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Find video protocols related to scientific articles indexed in Pubmed.
Perivascular Derived Stem Cells with Neural Crest Characteristics are Involved in Tendon Repair.
Stem Cells Dev.
PUBLISHED: 11-11-2014
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Tendons and ligaments exhibit limited regenerative capacity following injury, with damaged tissue being replaced by a fibrotic scar. The physiological role of scar tissue is complex and has been studied extensively. In this study we demonstrate that rat tendons contain a unique subpopulation of cells exhibiting stem cell characteristics, including clonogenicity, multipotency, and self-renewal capacity. Additionally, these putative stem cells expressed markers consistent with neural crest stem cells. Using immunofluorescent labeling, we identified P75+ (p75 neurotrophin receptor) cells in the perivascular regions of native rat tendon. Importantly, P75+ cells were frequently localized near vascular cells expressing ?-smooth muscle actin (SMA+) and increased in number within the peritenon after injury. Ultrastructural analysis showed that perivascular cells detached from vessels in response to injury, migrated into the interstitial space and deposited extracellular matrix (ECM). Characterization of P75+ cells isolated from the scar tissue indicated that this population also expressed the neural crest stem cell markers vimentin, Sox 10, and Snail. In conclusion, our results suggest that neural crest-like stem cells of perivascular origin reside within the rat peritenon and give rise to scar-forming stromal cells following tendon injury.
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Impact of mesophyll diffusion on estimated global land CO2 fertilization.
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.
PUBLISHED: 10-13-2014
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In C3 plants, CO2 concentrations drop considerably along mesophyll diffusion pathways from substomatal cavities to chloroplasts where CO2 assimilation occurs. Global carbon cycle models have not explicitly represented this internal drawdown and therefore overestimate CO2 available for carboxylation and underestimate photosynthetic responsiveness to atmospheric CO2. An explicit consideration of mesophyll diffusion increases the modeled cumulative CO2 fertilization effect (CFE) for global gross primary production (GPP) from 915 to 1,057 PgC for the period of 1901-2010. This increase represents a 16% correction, which is large enough to explain the persistent overestimation of growth rates of historical atmospheric CO2 by Earth system models. Without this correction, the CFE for global GPP is underestimated by 0.05 PgC/y/ppm. This finding implies that the contemporary terrestrial biosphere is more CO2 limited than previously thought.
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Total saponins from Rosa laevigata Michx fruit attenuates hepatic steatosis induced by high-fat diet in rats.
Food Funct
PUBLISHED: 10-13-2014
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The protective effects of total saponins from Rosa laevigata Michx fruit (RLTS) in high-fat diet (HFD)-induced rats were investigated. The results showed that oral administration of RLTS attenuated hepatic steatosis, significantly reduced the levels of body weight, alanine transaminase, aspartate transaminase, total cholesterol, total triglyceride, free fatty acids, low density lipoprotein, blood glucose, insulin and malondialdehyde, and increased high density lipoprotein and glutathione levels compared with the model group. Further investigations showed that RLTS affected fatty acid synthesis, fatty acid ?-oxidation, fatty acid ?-oxidation, total cholesterol and triglyceride metabolism and synthesis. Moreover, the extract obviously suppressed HFD-induced oxidative stress and inflammation. These results suggest that RLTS should be developed to be one functional food or health product against non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in the future.
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Sphagnum physiology in the context of changing climate: Emergent influences of genomics, modeling and host-microbiome interactions on understanding ecosystem function.
Plant Cell Environ.
PUBLISHED: 09-18-2014
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Peatlands harbor more than one-third of terrestrial carbon leading to the argument that the bryophytes, as major components of peatland ecosystems, store more organic carbon in soils than any other collective plant taxa. Plants of the genus Sphagnum is an important component of peatland ecosystems and are potentially vulnerable to changing climatic conditions. However, the response of Sphagnum to rising temperatures, elevated CO2 and shifts in local hydrology have yet to be fully characterized. In this review, we examine Sphagnum biology and ecology and explore the role of this keystone species and its associated microbiome in carbon and nitrogen cycling using literature review and model simulations. Several issues are highlighted including the consequences of a variable environment on plant-microbiome interactions, uncertainty associated with CO2 diffusion resistances and the relationship between fixed N and that partitioned to the photosynthetic apparatus. We note that the Sphagnum fallax genome is currently being sequenced and outline potential applications of population-level genomics and corresponding plant photosynthesis and microbial metabolic modeling techniques. We highlight Sphagnum as a model organism to explore ecosystem response to a changing climate, and to define the role that Sphagnum can play at the intersection of physiology, genetics and functional genomics.
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Rifampicin improves neuronal apoptosis in LPS-stimulated co?cultured BV2 cells through inhibition of the TLR-4 pathway.
Mol Med Rep
PUBLISHED: 08-11-2014
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Agents inhibiting microglial activation are attracting attention as candidate drugs for neuroprotection in neurodegenerative diseases. Recently, researchers have focused on the immunosuppression induced by rifampicin. Our previous study showed that rifampicin inhibits the production of lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced pro-inflammatory mediators and improves neuron survival in inflammation; however, the mechanism through which rifampicin inhibits microglial inflammation and its neuroprotective effects are not completely understood. In this study, we examined the effects of rifampicin on morphological changes induced by LPS in murine microglial BV2 cells. Then we investigated, in BV2 microglia, the effects of rifampicin on two signaling pathway componentss stimulated by LPS, the Toll?like receptor-4 (TLR-4) and the nuclear factor-?B (NF-?B). In addition, we co-cultured BV2 microglia and neurons to observe the indirect neuroprotective effects of rifampicin. Rifampicin inhibited LPS-stimulated expression of the TLR-4 gene. When neurons were co-cultured with LPS-stimulated BV2 microglia, pre-treatment with rifampicin increased neuronal viability and reduced the number of apoptotic cells. Taken together, these findings suggest that rifampicin, with its anti-inflammatory properties, may be a promising agent for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.
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Potent effects of flavonoid-rich extract from Rosa laevigata Michx fruit against hydrogen peroxide-induced damage in PC12 cells via attenuation of oxidative stress, inflammation and apoptosis.
Molecules
PUBLISHED: 08-07-2014
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Oxidative stress-induced neuronal death has an important role in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative disorders. The effects and mechanisms of action of the total flavonoids (TFs) from Rosa laevigata Michx fruit against hydrogen peroxide (H2O2)-induced oxidative injury in PC12 cells were investigated in this study. The results demonstrated that the TFs protected against cell apoptosis, DNA and mitochondrial damage caused by H2O2 based on single cell gel electrophoresis, in situ terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL), flow cytometry and transmission electron microscope (TEM) assays. In addition, the TFs notably decreased cytochrome C release from mitochondria into the cytosol and intracellular Ca2+ levels, and diminished intracellular generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Furthermore, the TFs inhibited the phosphorylation levels of JNK, ERK and p38 MAPK as well as down-regulated the expressions of IL-1, IL-6, TNF-?, Fas, FasL, CYP2E1, Bak, caspase-3, caspase-9, p53, COX-2, NF-?B, AP-1, and up-regulated the expressions of Bcl-2 and Bcl-xl. In conclusion, these results suggest that the TFs from R. laevigata Michx fruit show good effects against H2O2-induced oxidative injury in PC12 cells by adjusting oxidative stress, and suppression of apoptosis and inflammation, and could be developed as a potential candidate to prevent oxidative stress in the future.
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Dioscin attenuates hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury in rats through inhibition of oxidative-nitrative stress, inflammation and apoptosis.
Transplantation
PUBLISHED: 08-02-2014
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Dioscin shows potent effects against liver damage in our previous studies; however, the action of it on hepatic ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury is still unknown. In the present article, the effects and possible mechanisms of dioscin against hepatic I/R injury were investigated.
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Lack of association between the G+2044A polymorphism of interleukin-13 gene and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: a meta-analysis.
Mol. Biol. Rep.
PUBLISHED: 06-19-2014
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Numerous studies have investigated association of interleukin-13 (IL-13) G+2044A polymorphism with COPD susceptibility; however, the results were inconsistent and inconclusive. To evaluate the association between the IL-13 G+2044A polymorphism and susceptibility to COPD, a meta-analysis of published case-control studies was performed. Based on PubMed and Chinese database, this research selected studies that examined the association of the IL-13 G+2044A polymorphism with COPD. A genetic model-free approach was used to assess whether the combined data showed this association. Then a subgroup analysis was also performed, with stratifications for race, study design, and sample size. Six studies (total 1,213 COPD patients and 801 control subjects) for the IL-13 G+2044A polymorphism with COPD were included in the meta-analysis (G- vs A-allele: OR 1.12, 95 % CI 0.96-1.32, P = 0.15; genotypes GG+GA vs genotype AA: OR 0.99, 95 % CI 0.49-2.00, P = 0.98; genotype GG vs genotypes GA+AA: OR 1.18, 95 % CI 0.97-1.44, P = 0.09; genotype GA vs genotypes GG+AA: OR 0.85, 95 % CI 0.70-1.04, P = 0.11). This meta-analysis demonstrates that the IL-13 G+2044A polymorphism does not confer susceptibility to COPD. More detailed data about individual and environment, larger sample sizes with unbiased genotyping methods and matched controls in different populations are required.
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Potent Effects of the Total Saponins from Dioscorea nipponica Makino Against Streptozotocin-Induced Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus in Rats.
Phytother Res
PUBLISHED: 06-07-2014
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The aim of the present paper was to investigate the effects and possible mechanisms of the total saponins from Dioscorea nipponica Makino (TSDN) against type 2 diabetes mellitus. Streptozotocin (STZ) with high-fat diet induced type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) rats were treated with TSDN. Some biochemical parameters, target proteins and genes were investigated. The results showed that TSDN decreased the levels of food/water intake, fasting blood glucose and serum lipid parameters, ameliorated oral glucose and insulin tolerance test levels, markedly increased body weight and serum insulin, reduced excess free radicals and affected ossification and renal protection. Histopathological examination indicated that TSDN increased liver glycogen, decreased the production of lipid vacuoles and lightened liver damage. Further investigation showed that TSDN down-regulated the protein expressions of NF-?B, GRP78, ATF6, eIF2 and the levels of MAPK phosphorylation and up-regulated the protein expressions of IRS-1, GLUT-4, p-Akt and p-AMPK. In addition, TSDN obviously decreased the gene expressions of TNF-a, IL-6, PEPCK, G6Pase, GSK-3? and GSK-3? activity, and increased the gene expressions of PFK, PK and GK activity. These findings show the anti-diabetic activity of total saponins from D. nipponica Makino, which should be developed as a new potent drug for treatment of diabetes mellitus in future. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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Radiation-induced brachial plexus injury after radiotherapy for nasopharyngeal carcinoma.
Jpn. J. Clin. Oncol.
PUBLISHED: 05-19-2014
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Radiation-induced brachial plexus injury is a devastating complication that occurs after radiotherapy in the vicinity of the brachial plexus. Nasopharyngeal carcinoma, the most common type of cancer in Guangdong Province, is primarily treated with radiotherapy with subsequent side effects. However, radiation-induced brachial plexus injury is rarely reported in nasopharyngeal carcinoma. To draw attention to this correlation, we analyzed the clinical characteristics including the imaging findings of 10 patients suffering from radiation-induced brachial plexus injury for nasopharyngeal carcinoma.
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Comparison of reprogramming genes in induced pluripotent stem cells and nuclear transfer cloned embryos.
Stem Cell Rev
PUBLISHED: 05-16-2014
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The most effective reprogramming methods, somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), are widely used in biological research and regenerative medicine, yet the mechanism that reprograms somatic cells to totipotency remains unclear and thus reprogramming efficiency is still low. Microarray technology has been employed in analyzing the transcriptomes changes during iPS reprogramming. Unfortunately, it is difficult to obtain enough DNA from SCNT reconstructed embryos to take advantage of this technology. In this study, we aimed to identify critical genes from the transcriptional profile for iPS reprogramming and compared expression levels of these genes in SCNT reprogramming. By integrating gene expression information from microarray databases and published studies comparing somatic cells with either miPSCs or mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs), we obtained two lists of co-upregulated genes. The gene ontology (GO) enriched analysis of these two lists demonstrated that the reprogramming process is associated with numerous biological processes. Specifically, we selected 32 genes related to heterochromatin, embryonic development, and cell cycle from our co-upregulated gene datasets and examined the gene expression level in iPSCs and SCNT embryos by qPCR. The results revealed that some reprogramming related genes in iPSCs were also expressed in SCNT reprogramming. We established the network of gene interactions that occur with genes differentially expressed in iPS and SCNT reprogramming and then performed GO analysis on the genes in the network. The network genes function in chromatin organization, heterochromatin, transcriptional regulation, and cell cycle. Further researches to improve reprogramming efficiency, especially in SCNT, will focus on functional studies of these selected genes.
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Characterization of an Ebosin derivative produced by heterologous gene replacement in.
Microb. Cell Fact.
PUBLISHED: 05-07-2014
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BackgroundEbosin is a novel exopolysaccharide (EPS) produced by Streptomyces sp. 139 and evidenced to possess an anti-rheumatic arthritis activity in vivo. The Ebosin biosynthesis gene cluster (ste) consists of 27 ORFs and ste7 has previously been demonstrated to code for a fucosyltransferase, which plays an essential role in the formation of repeating sugar units during Ebosin production. Aiming to generate derivatives of Ebosin for better activity, we replaced ste7 with a gene encoding for a glucosyltransferase (gtf) from Streptococcus thermophilus. ResultsThis alteration resulted in a novel Ebosin derivative (EPS-7 g) with its monosaccharide composition dramatically changed, especially in the proportion of glucose which increased from 1.1% (Ebosin) to 84.01% (EPS-7 g). In an ELISA analysis, EPS-7 g exhibited a higher binding activity for IL-1R, as a competitor of interleukin-1, than that of Ebosin. It also exhibited a higher inhibitory effect on the activity of IL-1ß-converting enzyme and production of IL-1ß in fibroblast-like synoviocytes (FLS). In addition, experiments with acute inflamed mice induced by croton oil showed a significantly higher anti-inflammatory activity of EPS-7 g compared with Ebosin.ConclusionsThe new Ebosin derivative EPS-7 g is more bioactive than Ebosin evaluated by a series of experiments. This is the first report demonstrating a modification of EPS structure via heterologous gene replacement in Streptomyces.
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Effects of the total saponins from Rosa laevigata Michx fruit against acetaminophen-induced liver damage in mice via induction of autophagy and suppression of inflammation and apoptosis.
Molecules
PUBLISHED: 05-04-2014
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The effect of the total saponins from Rosa laevigata Michx fruit (RLTS) against acetaminophen (APAP)-induced liver damage in mice was evaluated in the present paper. The results showed that RLTS markedly improved the levels of liver SOD, CAT, GSH, GSH-Px, MDA, NO and iNOS, and the activities of serum ALT and AST caused by APAP. Further research confirmed that RLTS prevented fragmentation of DNA and mitochondrial ultrastructural alterations based on TdT-mediated dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) assays. In addition, RLTS decreased the gene or protein expressions of cytochrome P450 (CYP2E1), pro-inflammatory mediators (IL-1?, IL-4, IL-6, TNF-?, iNOS, Bax, HMGB-1 and COX-2), pro-inflammatory transcription factors (NF-?B and AP-1), pro-apoptotic proteins (cytochrome C, p53, caspase-3, caspase-9, p-JNK, p-p38 and p-ERK), and increased the protein expressions of Bcl-2 and Bcl-xL. Moreover, the gene expression of IL-10, and the proteins including LC3, Beclin-1 and Atg5 induced by APAP were even more augmented by the extract. These results demonstrate that RLTS has hepatoprotective effects through antioxidative action, induction of autophagy, and suppression of inflammation and apoptosis, and could be developed as a potential candidate to treat APAP-induced liver damage in the future.
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Adenosine receptor expression in a rat model of experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis.
Cell. Immunol.
PUBLISHED: 03-17-2014
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Extracellular adenosine is an essential negative regulator of immune reactions that acts by signaling via 4 distinct adenosine receptors. We evaluated adenosine receptor expression in Lewis rats presenting with experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis (EAMG) to determine whether the expression of adenosine receptors are changed in the development and progression of EAMG. Lymphocyte A1AR and A2AAR mRNA and protein levels from lymphocytes harvested from the lymph nodes, spleen, and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) of EAMG rats were decreased. A modest but not significant increase in A2BAR levels was observed in EAMG lymphocytes harvested from lymph nodes and PBMCs. No changes in A3AR expression were observed in lymphocytes harvested from lymph nodes, spleen, or PBMCs following EAMG induction. Results presented in this report showed that the expression levels and the distribution pattern of adenosine receptors were altered in EAMG lymphocytes.
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Microbial dormancy improves development and experimental validation of ecosystem model.
ISME J
PUBLISHED: 03-15-2014
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Climate feedbacks from soils can result from environmental change followed by response of plant and microbial communities, and/or associated changes in nutrient cycling. Explicit consideration of microbial life-history traits and functions may be necessary to predict climate feedbacks owing to changes in the physiology and community composition of microbes and their associated effect on carbon cycling. Here we developed the microbial enzyme-mediated decomposition (MEND) model by incorporating microbial dormancy and the ability to track multiple isotopes of carbon. We tested two versions of MEND, that is, MEND with dormancy (MEND) and MEND without dormancy (MEND_wod), against long-term (270 days) carbon decomposition data from laboratory incubations of four soils with isotopically labeled substrates. MEND_wod adequately fitted multiple observations (total C-CO2 and (14)C-CO2 respiration, and dissolved organic carbon), but at the cost of significantly underestimating the total microbial biomass. MEND improved estimates of microbial biomass by 20-71% over MEND_wod. We also quantified uncertainties in parameters and model simulations using the Critical Objective Function Index method, which is based on a global stochastic optimization algorithm, as well as model complexity and observational data availability. Together our model extrapolations of the incubation study show that long-term soil incubations with experimental data for multiple carbon pools are conducive to estimate both decomposition and microbial parameters. These efforts should provide essential support to future field- and global-scale simulations, and enable more confident predictions of feedbacks between environmental change and carbon cycling.The ISME Journal advance online publication, 11 July 2014; doi:10.1038/ismej.2014.120.
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Synthesis and characterization of 14C-labelled sulfate conjugates of steroid oestrogens.
J Labelled Comp Radiopharm
PUBLISHED: 03-11-2014
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Steroid oestrogens are typical endocrine-disrupting compounds in the environment and are excreted from the human and animals mainly as conjugates, including sulfate and glucuronide salts. The oestrogen conjugates are largely biologically inactive, but they can be de-conjugated and release free oestrogens, which usually exhibit strong oestrogenicity. Therefore, it is important to study the fate of oestrogen conjugates in the environment. However, because of the complexity of environmental matrixes, time-consuming pre-treatments of samples are usually required to reduce the interference of the matrixes. (14)C radioisotope can trace target substances and their degradation products at low concentrations in complex environmental samples and is therefore essential in such studies. We synthesized three oestrogen sulfates with (14)C-labelling at the ring, i.e. [3-(14)C]-estrone-3-sulfate ammonium salt, [3-(14)C]-17?-estradiol-17-sulfate ammonium salt, and [3-(14)C]-17?-estradiol-3,17-disulfate diammonium salt with radiochemical purities of >98% by sulfation of [3-(14)C]-labelled estrone and 17?-estradiol in dry pyridine with SO3 -triethylamine at room temperature or 90-95?°C, followed by hydrolysis with KOH-methanol solution and purification by preparative thin-layer chromatography on silica gel using an ammonia-containing eluent. The products were characterized by mass spectrometry and (13)C and (1)H nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, using their corresponding non-labelled compounds. The (14)C-labelled oestrogen conjugates provide possibilities for studying their fate in soil and sediment environments as well as in the animal manure.
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Effects of the geophagous earthworm Metaphire guillelmi on sorption, mineralization, and bound-residue formation of 4-nonylphenol in an agricultural soil.
Environ. Pollut.
PUBLISHED: 02-28-2014
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Effects of earthworms on fate of nonylphenol (NP) are obscure. Using (14)C-4-NP111 as a representative, we studied the fate of 4-NP in an agricultural soil with or without the earthworm Metaphire guillelmi and in fresh cast of the earthworm. Sorption of 4-NP on the cast (Kd 1564) was significantly higher than on the parent soil (Kd 1474). Mineralization of 4-NP was significantly lower in the cast (13.2%) and the soil with earthworms (10.4%) than in the earthworm-free soil (16.0%). One nitro metabolite of 4-NP111 (2-nitro-4-NP111) was identified in the soil and cast, and the presence of the earthworm significantly decreased its amounts. The presence of earthworm also significantly decreased formation of bound residues of 4-NP in the soil. Our results demonstrate that earthworms could significantly change the fate of 4-NP, underlining that earthworm effects should be considered when evaluating behavior and risk of 4-NP in soil.
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Seasonal, diurnal and vertical variation in photosynthetic parameters in Phyllostachys humilis bamboo plants.
Photosyn. Res.
PUBLISHED: 02-24-2014
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In recent years, temperate bamboo species have been introduced in Europe for multiple uses such as renewable bio-based materials (wood, composites, fibres, biochemicals…) and numerous ecological functions (soil and water conservation, erosion control, phytoremediation…). Despite their interesting potential, little is known on the ecophysiology of these plants in their new habitat. Therefore, we studied gas exchange parameters on a full soil bamboo plantation of Phyllostachys humilis on a test field in Ireland (Europe). We evaluated the seasonal, diurnal and vertical variation of the parameters of two commonly used photosynthetic models, i.e. the light response curve (LRC) model and the model of Farquhar, von Caemmerer and Berry (FvCB). Furthermore, we tested if there were environmental effects on the photosynthetic parameters of these models and if a correlation between photosynthetic parameters and fluorescence parameters was present, fluorescence parameters can be easily and fast determined. Our results show that the gas exchange parameters do not vary diurnally or vertically. Only seasonal variations were found and should, therefore, be taken into account when using the LRC or FvCB model when modelling canopy growth. Therefore, a big-leaf model or a sunlit-shade model can be used for modelling bamboo growth in Western Europe. There is no straightforward relation between environmental variables and the photosynthetic parameters. Although fluorescence parameters showed a correlation with the photosynthetic parameters, application of such correlation may be limited.
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Protein-selective coacervation with hyaluronic acid.
Biomacromolecules
PUBLISHED: 02-11-2014
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Selective coacervation with hyaluronic acid (HA), a biocompatible and injectable anionic polysaccharide, was used to isolate a target protein, bovine serum albumin (BSA), with 90% purity from a 1:1 mixture with a second protein of similar pI, ?-lactoglobulin (BLG). This separation was attributed to the higher HA-affinity of BSA, arising from its more concentrated positive domain. The values of pH corresponding respectively to the onset of complex formation, coacervation, precipitation, and redissolution (pH(c), pH?, pH(p), and pH(d)) were determined as a function of ionic strength I. These pH values were related to critical values of protein charge, Z, and their dependence on I provided some insights into the mechanisms of these transitions. The higher polyanion binding affinity of BSA, deduced from its higher values of pH(c), was confirmed by isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC). Confocal laser microscopy clearly showed time-dependent coalescence of vesicular droplets into a continuous film. Comparisons with prior results for the polycation poly(diallyldimethylammonium chloride) (PDADMAC) show reversal of protein selectivity due to reversal of the polyelectrolyte charge. Stronger binding of both proteins to PDADMAC established by ITC may be related to the higher chain flexibility and effective linear charge density of this polycation.
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Prevalence of low serum vitamin a levels in young children with chalazia in southwest china.
Am. J. Ophthalmol.
PUBLISHED: 02-05-2014
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To detect risk factors that may be related to chalazia in children in southwest China.
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iTRAQ-based proteomic analysis of dioscin on human HCT-116 colon cancer cells.
Proteomics
PUBLISHED: 01-15-2014
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Dioscin shows various pharmacological effects. However, its activity on colorectal cancer is still unknown. The present work showed that dioscin significantly inhibited cell proliferation on human HCT-116 colon cancer cells, and affected Ca(2+) release and ROS generation. The content of nitric oxide (NO) and its producer inducible NO synthase (iNOS) associated with DNA damage and aberrant cell signaling were assayed using the kits. DNA damage and cell apoptosis caused by dioscin were also analyzed through single-cell gel electrophoresis and in situ terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick-end labeling assays. The results showed that dioscin increased the levels of NO and inducible NO synthase. The comet length in dioscin-treated groups was much longer than that of the control group, and the number of terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick-end labeling positive cells (apoptotic cells) was significantly increased by the compound (p < 0.01). Furthermore, dioscin caused mitochondrial damage and G2/M cell cycle arrest through transmission electron microscopy and flow cytometry analysis, respectively. To study the cytotoxic mechanism of dioscin, an iTRAQ-based proteomics approach was used. There were 288 significantly different proteins expressed in response to dioscin, which were connected with each other and were involved in different Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes pathways. Then, some differentially expressed proteins involved in oxidative phosphorylation, Wnt, p53, and calcium signaling pathways were validated by Western blotting and quantitative real-time PCR assays. Our work elucidates the molecular mechanism of dioscin-induced cytotoxicity in colon cancer cells, and the identified targets may be useful for treatment of colorectal cancer in future.
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Structure-activity relationships of diamine inhibitors of cytochrome P450 (CYP) 3A as novel pharmacoenhancers. Part II: P2/P3 region and discovery of cobicistat (GS-9350).
Bioorg. Med. Chem. Lett.
PUBLISHED: 01-14-2014
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The HIV protease inhibitor (PI) ritonavir (RTV) has been widely used as a pharmacoenhancer for other PIs, which are substrates of cytochrome P450 3A (CYP3A). However the potent anti-HIV activity of ritonavir may limit its use as a pharmacoenhancer with other classes of anti-HIV agents. Ritonavir is also associated with limitations such as poor physicochemical properties. To address these issues a series of compounds with replacements at the P2 and/or P3 region was designed and evaluated as novel CYP3A inhibitors. Through these efforts, a potent and selective inhibitor of CYP3A, GS-9350 (cobicistat) with improved physiochemical properties was discovered.
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Structure-activity relationships of diamine inhibitors of cytochrome P450 (CYP) 3A as novel pharmacoenhancers, part I: core region.
Bioorg. Med. Chem. Lett.
PUBLISHED: 01-14-2014
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Ritonavir (RTV), an HIV-1 protease inhibitor (PI), is also a potent mechanism-based inhibitor of human cytochrome P450 3A (CYP3A) and has been widely prescribed as a pharmacoenhancer. As a boosting agent for marketed PIs, it reduces pill burden, and improves compliance. Removal of the hydroxyl group from RTV reduces, but does not eliminate HIV PI activity and does not affect CYP3A inhibition. Herein we report the discovery of a novel series of CYP3A inhibitors that are devoid of antiviral activity. The synthesis and evaluation of analogs with extensive modifications of the 1,4-diamine core along with the structure activity relationships with respect to anti-HIV activity, CYP3A inhibitory activity, selectivity against other CYP enzymes and the human pregnane X receptor (PXR) will be discussed.
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Protective effects of the total saponins from Dioscorea nipponica Makino against carbon tetrachloride-induced liver injury in mice through suppression of apoptosis and inflammation.
Int. Immunopharmacol.
PUBLISHED: 01-13-2014
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The present study was to investigate the effects and possible mechanisms of the total saponins from Dioscorea nipponica Makino (TSDN) against CCl?-induced hepato-toxicity in mice. The mice were orally administrated with TSDN for seven days and then given CCl? (0.3%, 10 ml/kg i.p.). The results showed that TSDN significantly attenuated the activities of ALT and AST, consistent with hematoxylin-eosin staining. The ALP levels and relative liver weight were significantly decreased by TSDN compared with model group. Moreover, TSDN dramatically decreased MDA, iNOS and NO levels, while the levels of GSH, GSH-Px and SOD were increased. Further investigations showed that TSDN inhibited CCl?-induced metabolic activation and CYP2E1 expression, down-regulated the levels of MAPKs phosphorylation, NF-?B, HMGB1, COX-2 as well as effectively suppressed the expressions of Caspase-3, Caspase-9, PARP and Bak. Quantitative real-time PCR assay demonstrated that TSDN obviously decreased the gene expressions of TNF-a, IL-1?, IL-6, IL-10, Fas, FasL, Bax as well as modulated Bcl-2 mRNA level. This is the first time to report the protective actions of the TSDN against CCl?-induced liver damage in mice through suppression of inflammation and apoptosis. This natural product should be developed as a new drug for treatment of liver injury in future.
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The effects of harvesting media on biological characteristics and repair potential of neural stem cells after traumatic brain injury.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Various solutions are utilized widely for the isolation, harvesting, sorting, testing and transplantation of neural stem cells (NSCs), whereas the effects of harvesting media on the biological characteristics and repair potential of NSCs remain unclear. To examine some of these effects, NSCs were isolated from cortex of E14.5 mice and exposed to the conventional harvesting media [0.9% saline (Saline), phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) or artificial cerebrospinal fluid (ACSF)] or the proliferation culture medium (PCM) for different durations at 4°C. Treated NSCs were grafted by in situ injection into the lesion sites of traumatic brain injury (TBI) mice. In vitro, harvesting media-exposed NSCs displayed time-dependent reduction of viability and proliferation. S phase entry decreased in harvesting media-exposed cells, which was associated with upregulation of p53 protein and downregulation of cyclin E1 protein. Moreover, harvesting media exposure induced the necrosis and apoptosis of NSCs. The levels of Fas-L, cleaved caspase 3 and 8 were increased, which suggests that the death receptor signaling pathway is involved in the apoptosis of NSCs. In addition, exposure to Saline did not facilitate the neuronal differentiation of NSCs, suggesting that Saline exposure may be disadvantageous for neurogenesis. In vivo, NSC-mediated functional recovery in harvesting media-exposed NSC groups was notably attenuated in comparison with the PCM-exposed NSC group. In conclusion, harvesting media exposure modulates the biological characteristics and repair potential of NSCs after TBI. Our results suggest that insight of the effects of harvesting media exposure on NSCs is critical for developing strategies to assure the successful long-term engraftment of NSCs.
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Interrelationships between ALOX5AP polymorphisms, serum leukotriene B4 level and risk of acute coronary syndrome.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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We investigated the relationships between the ALOX5AP gene rs10507391 and rs4769874 polymorphisms, serum levels of leukotriene (LT) B4, and risk of acute coronary syndrome (ACS).
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Selection and expression profiles of reference genes in mouse preimplantation embryos of different ploidies at various developmental stages.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Real-time reverse transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) has become the most frequently used system for studies of gene expression. Many studies have provided reliable evidence that the transcription levels of reference genes are not constant at different developmental stages and in different experimental conditions. However, suitable reference genes which are stably expressed in polyploid preimplantation embryos of different developmental stages have not yet been identified. Therefore, it is critical to verify candidate reference genes to analyze gene expression accurately in both diploid and polyploid embryos. We examined the expression levels of 12 candidate reference genes in preimplantation embryos of four different ploidies at six developmental stages. Stability analysis of the reference genes was performed by four independent software programs, and the stability of three genes was evaluated by comparison with the Oct4 expression level during preimplantation development in diploid embryos. The expression levels of most genes in the polyploid embryos were higher than that in the diploid embryos, but the increasing degree were disproportionate with the ploidies. There were no significant difference in reference gene expressions among embryos of different ploidies when they reached the morula stage, and the expression level remained flat until the blastocyst stage. Ubc, Ppia, and Pgk1 were the three most stable reference genes in diploid and polyploid embryos.
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Rifampicin protects PC12 cells from rotenone-induced cytotoxicity by activating GRP78 via PERK-eIF2?-ATF4 pathway.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Rifampicin has been proposed as a therapeutic candidate for Parkinson's disease (PD). We previously showed that rifampicin was neuroprotective in PD models in vivo and in vitro. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying are not fully elucidated. In this study, using the comprehensive proteomic analysis, we identified that the 78 kDa glucose-regulated protein (GRP78), a hallmark of the unfolded protein response (UPR), was upregulated in rifampicin-treated PC12 cells. Western blot analysis confirmed GRP78 activation. GRP78 functions cytoprotectively in stressed cells, therefore, we hypothesized that GRP78 mediated rifampicin-induced neuroprotection. Using RNA interference, we found that GRP78 gene knockdown significantly attenuated the neuroprotective effects of rifampicin. Next, we examined three UPR transducers, namely, protein kinase RNA-like endoplasmic reticulum kinase (PERK), inositol requiring kinase ? (IRE?) and activating transcription factor 6 (ATF 6), and how they regulated rifampicin-stimulated GRP78 expression. Our results showed that PERK, eukaryotic initiation factor 2? (eIF2?), and activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4) were activated in rifampicin-treated PC12 cells. Silencing the ATF4 gene using RNAi inhibited GRP78 stimulation. Interestingly, we did not detect significant IRE? activation, X-box binding protein 1 mRNA splicing, or ATF6 cleavage up to 24 h after rifampicin treatment. Taken together, our data suggested that rifampicin induced GRP78 via the PERK-eIF2?-ATF4 pathway to protect neurons against rotenone-induced cell damage. Targeting molecules in this pathway could be a novel therapeutic approach for PD treatment.
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Representation of dormant and active microbial dynamics for ecosystem modeling.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Dormancy is an essential strategy for microorganisms to cope with environmental stress. However, global ecosystem models typically ignore microbial dormancy, resulting in notable model uncertainties. To facilitate the consideration of dormancy in these large-scale models, we propose a new microbial physiology component that works for a wide range of substrate availabilities. This new model is based on microbial physiological states and the major parameters are the maximum specific growth and maintenance rates of active microbes and the ratio of dormant to active maintenance rates. A major improvement of our model over extant models is that it can explain the low active microbial fractions commonly observed in undisturbed soils. Our new model shows that the exponentially-increasing respiration from substrate-induced respiration experiments can only be used to determine the maximum specific growth rate and initial active microbial biomass, while the respiration data representing both exponentially-increasing and non-exponentially-increasing phases can robustly determine a range of key parameters including the initial total live biomass, initial active fraction, the maximum specific growth and maintenance rates, and the half-saturation constant. Our new model can be incorporated into existing ecosystem models to account for dormancy in microbially-driven processes and to provide improved estimates of microbial activities.
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Morphological changes and germ layer formation in the porcine embryos from days 7-13 of development.
Zygote
PUBLISHED: 11-16-2013
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Summary Morphogenesis and identification of embryonic differentiation in porcine embryos are crucial issues for developmental biology and laboratory animal science. The current paper presents a study on the asynchronous development of hatched porcine embryos from days 7 to 13 post-insemination. Examination of semi-thin sections of the hypoblast showed that it had characteristics similar to those of the mouse anterior visceral endoderm during embryonic disc formation. Also, a cavity appeared in the epiblast, which was similar to a mouse proamniotic cavity. With the gradual disappearance of Raubers layer, the cavity opened and contacted the external environment directly, all of which formed the embryonic disc. To confirm the differentiation characteristics, we performed immunohistochemical analyses and showed that GATA6 was detected clearly in parietal endoderm cells during embryonic disc establishment. OCT4 was expressed in the inner cell mass (ICM) and trophoblast of hatched blastocysts and in the epiblast during formation of the embryonic disc. However, OCT4 showed comparatively decreased expression in the posterior embryonic disc, primitive streak and migrating cells. SOX2 was present in the ICM and epiblast. Therefore, both SOX2 and OCT4 can be used as markers of pluripotent cells in the porcine embryonic disc. At the start of gastrulation, staining revealed VIMENTIN in the posterior of the embryonic disc, primitive streak and in migrating cells that underlay the embryonic disc and was also expressed in epiblast cells located in the anterior primitive streak. Together with serial sections of embryos stained by whole mount immunohistochemistry, the mesoderm differentiation pattern was shown as an ingression movement that took place at the posterior of the embryonic disc and with bilateral migration along the embryonic disc borders.
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Discovery of GS-9669, a Thumb Site II Non-Nucleoside Inhibitor of NS5B for the Treatment of Genotype 1 Chronic Hepatitis C Infection.
J. Med. Chem.
PUBLISHED: 11-06-2013
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Investigation of thiophene-2-carboxylic acid HCV NS5B site II inhibitors, guided by measurement of cell culture medium binding, revealed the structure-activity relationships for intrinsic cellular potency. The pharmacokinetic profile was enhanced through incorporation of heterocyclic ethers on the N-alkyl substituent. Hydroxyl groups were incorporated to modulate protein binding. Intrinsic potency was further improved through enantiospecific introduction of an olefin in the N-acyl motif, resulting in the discovery of the phase 2 clinical candidate GS-9669. The unexpected activity of this compound against the clinically relevant NS5B M423T mutant, relative to the wild type, was shown to arise from both the N-alkyl substituent and the N-acyl group.
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Correlating structure and function of drug-metabolizing enzymes: progress and ongoing challenges.
Drug Metab. Dispos.
PUBLISHED: 10-15-2013
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This report summarizes a symposium sponsored by the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics at Experimental Biology held April 20-24 in Boston, MA. Presentations discussed the status of cytochrome P450 (P450) knowledge, emphasizing advances and challenges in relating structure with function and in applying this information to drug design. First, at least one structure of most major human drug-metabolizing P450 enzymes is known. However, the flexibility of these active sites can limit the predictive value of one structure for other ligands. A second limitation is our coarse-grain understanding of P450 interactions with membranes, other P450 enzymes, NADPH-cytochrome P450 reductase, and cytochrome b5. Recent work has examined differential P450 interactions with reductase in mixed P450 systems and P450:P450 complexes in reconstituted systems and cells, suggesting another level of functional control. In addition, protein nuclear magnetic resonance is a new approach to probe these protein/protein interactions, identifying interacting b5 and P450 surfaces, showing that b5 and reductase binding are mutually exclusive, and demonstrating ligand modulation of CYP17A1/b5 interactions. One desired outcome is the application of such information to control drug metabolism and/or design selective P450 inhibitors. A final presentation highlighted development of a CYP3A4 inhibitor that slows clearance of human immunodeficiency virus drugs otherwise rapidly metabolized by CYP3A4. Although understanding P450 structure/function relationships is an ongoing challenge, translational advances will benefit from continued integration of existing and new biophysical approaches.
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Genistein decreases the breast cancer stem-like cell population through Hedgehog pathway.
Stem Cell Res Ther
PUBLISHED: 08-29-2013
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The existence of breast cancer stem-like cells (BCSCs) has profound implications for cancer prevention. Genistein, a predominant isoflavone found in soy products, has multiple robust anti-tumor effects in various cancers, especially in the breast and prostate cancer. In this study, we aimed to evaluate genistein inhibition of BCSCs and its potential mechanism by culturing MCF-7 breast cancer cells and implanting these cells into nude mice.
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Identification and functional analysis of the gene ste9 involving in Ebosin biosynthesis from Streptomyces sp. 139.
FEMS Microbiol. Lett.
PUBLISHED: 08-10-2013
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Ebosin is a novel exopolysaccharide produced by Streptomyces sp. 139 with remarkable antirheumatic arthritis activity in vivo, and its biosynthesis gene cluster (ste) consisting of 27 ORFs has been identified. For functional analysis, one of the ste genes, ste9, was disrupted and then the gene complementation was performed. The resultant mutant Streptomyces sp. 139 (ste9(-) ) produced polysaccharides with molecular weights of about 4.153 × 10(5) which is much smaller than that of Ebosin (9.03 × 10(5) ). The complemented strain Streptomyces sp. 139 (pKC9c) showed recovery in the molecular weights of EPS produced (8.004 × 10(5) ). As the theoretical protein product of ste9 is a chain length determinant (Wzz) homologue by sequence similarity, ste9 was cloned and expressed in E. coli 086:H2 (wzz(-) ) for a complementation test. SDS-PAGE analysis showed that E. coli 086:H2 (wzz(-) ) (pET30a-ste9) produced a modal chain length lipid polysaccharide (LPS) similar to that of the wild-type E. coli 086:H2. In addition, the expression of ste9 was able to restore the serum resistance of E. coli 086:H2 (wzz(-) ) to almost the level of the wild-type strain. These results indicate that the ste9 gene is coding for a chain length determinant which plays an important role in Ebosin biosynthesis.
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Degradation and bound-residue formation of nonylphenol in red soil and the effects of ammonium.
Environ. Pollut.
PUBLISHED: 08-08-2013
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Fate of nonylphenol (NP) in soils and the effects of nitrogen fertilizers are unclear. Using (14)C-tracer, we studied the aerobic and anaerobic degradation of 4-NP111 in a paddy red soil amended without and with ammonium chloride. Under oxic conditions, 4-NP111 had a half-life of 16.1 ± 1.6 days and minor mineralization (3.84 ± 0.02%), forming no extractable metabolite but abundant bound residues (60.9 ± 1.7%, mostly bound to humin) after 49 days of incubation. The ammonium amendment (8 mmol/kg soil) significantly inhibited the degradation (half-life of 68.0 ± 7.7 days), mineralization (2.0 ± 1.1%), and bound-residue formation (23.7 ± 0.2%). Under anoxic conditions, 4-NP111 did not degrade during 49 days of incubation and the ammonium amendment (40 mmol/kg soil) did not affect its persistence. Our results demonstrate that bound-residue formation was a major mechanism for NP dissipation in the red soil under oxic conditions and that chemical nitrogen fertilizer at average field application rate may already considerably increase NP recalcitrance in agricultural soils.
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Effects of daily bathing with chlorhexidine and acquired infection of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus: a meta-analysis.
J Thorac Dis
PUBLISHED: 07-30-2013
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Chlorhexidine gluconate (CHG) is a common and safe antimicrobial agent and has been used widely in hand hygiene and skin disinfection; however, whether daily bathing with CHG results in the reduced acquired infection of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE) remains inconclusive.
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Degradation, metabolism, and bound-residue formation and release of Tetrabromobisphenol A in soil during sequential anoxic-oxic incubation.
Environ. Sci. Technol.
PUBLISHED: 07-24-2013
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Tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA) is one of the most commonly used flame retardants and has become an environmental contaminant worldwide. We studied the fate of (14)C-labeled TBBPA in soil under static anoxic (195 days) and sequential anoxic (125 days)-oxic (70 days) conditions. During anoxic incubation, TBBPA dissipated with a half-life of 36 days, yielding four debromination metabolites: bisphenol A (BPA) and mono-, di-, and tribrominated BPA. At the end of anoxic incubation, all four brominated BPAs completely disappeared, leaving BPA (54% of initial TBBPA) as the sole detectable organic metabolite. TBBPA dissipation was accompanied by trace mineralization (<1.3%) and substantial bound-residue formation (35%), probably owing to chemical binding to soil organic matter. Subsequent oxic incubation was effective in degrading accumulated BPA (half-life 11 days) through mineralization (6%) and bound-residue formation (62%). However, 42% of the anoxically formed bound residues was released as TBBPA and lower brominated BPAs, which were then persistent during oxic incubation. Our results provide the first evidence for release of bound residues during alteration of the redox environment and indicate that sequential anoxic-oxic incubation approaches-considered effective in remediation of environments containing halogenated xenobiotics-do not completely remove xenobiotics from environmental matrices.
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Identification and Functional Analysis of the Chain Length Determinant Gene ste8 Involved in the Biosynthesis of Ebosin by Streptomyces sp. 139.
J. Microbiol. Biotechnol.
PUBLISHED: 07-16-2013
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Ebosin, a novel exopolysaccharide produced by Streptomyces sp. 139, has obvious antirheumatic arthritis activity in vivo, and its biosynthesis gene cluster (ste), consisting of 27 open reading frames, has been identified. This paper reports our study of the gene functionality of ste8, the predicted protein product of which is homologous to some bacterial chain length determinant Wzz proteins. For characterization of Ste8, ste8 was cloned and expressed in the mutant strain E. coli 086:H2 (?wzz). The functional complementation of wzz by ste8 was demonstrated by the restoration of wild-type lipopolysaccharide biosynthesis and increased levels of serum resistance of E. coli 086:H2 (?wzz) (pET30a-ste8). To examine the function of ste8 in ebosin biosynthesis, the gene was knocked out with a double crossover via homologous recombination. The molecular weight of the ebosin derivative EPS-8m produced by the mutant Streptomyces sp. 139 (ste8) was much lower than that of ebosin, and the binding activity of EPS-8m for IL-1R decreased significantly compared with ebosin. These results demonstrate that ste8 encodes a chain length determinant (Wzz) that functions in ebosin biosynthesis.
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Artefactual responses of mesophyll conductance to CO2 and irradiance estimated with the variable J and online isotope discrimination methods.
Plant Cell Environ.
PUBLISHED: 07-11-2013
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Studies with the variable J method have reported that mesophyll conductance (gm ) rapidly decreases with increasing intercellular CO2 partial pressures (Ci ) or decreasing irradiance. Similar responses have been suggested with the online isotope discrimination method, although with less consistency. Here we show that even when the true gm is constant, the variable J method can produce an artefactual dependence of gm on Ci or irradiance similar to those reported in previous studies for any of the following factors: day respiration and chloroplastic CO2 photocompensation point are estimated with Laisk method; Ci or electron transport rate is positively biased; net photosynthetic rate is negatively biased; insufficient NADPH is assumed while insufficient ATP limits RuBP regeneration. The isotopic method produces similar artefacts if fractionation of carboxylation or Ci is positively biased or ?(13) negatively biased. A non-zero chloroplastic resistance to CO2 movement results in a qualitatively different dependence of gm on Ci or irradiance and this dependence is only sensitive at low Ci . We thus cannot rule out the possibility that previously reported dependence of gm on Ci or irradiance is a methodological artefact. Recommendations are made to take advantage of sensitivities of the variable J and isotopic methods for estimating gm .
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Protective effects of dioscin against alcohol-induced liver injury.
Arch. Toxicol.
PUBLISHED: 07-09-2013
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Our previous studies have shown that dioscin has protective effect against liver injury. However, the action of the compound against ethanol-induced liver injury is still unknown. In the present paper, ethanol-induced acute and chronic liver damage rat models were used, and the results showed that dioscin significantly alleviated liver steatosis, reduced the levels of alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, total triglyceride (TG), total cholesterol and malondialdehyde, and increased the levels of high-density lipoprotein, superoxide dismutase, glutathione and glutathione peroxidase. Transmission electron microscopy and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling assays showed that dioscin prevented mitochondrial ultrastructural alterations and apoptosis caused by ethanol. In addition, dioscin significantly inhibited ethanol-induced cytochrome P450 2E1 activation, down-regulated the levels of mitogen-activated protein kinases phosphorylation, inhibited the expressions of nuclear factor kappa B, glucose regulated protein 78, activating transcription factor 6 and alpha subunit of translation initiation factor 2 to attenuate oxidative damage, decreased the expressions of tumor necrosis factor alpha and interleukin-6, and down-regulated the expressions of apoptosis-related proteins including p53, caspase-3, caspase-9, poly (ADP-ribose)-polymerase and cytokeratin-18. Further investigation indicated that dioscin markedly increased the expressions of peroxisome proliferators-activated receptor ? and its target genes including medium-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase, carnitine palmitoyl-CoA transferase I and acyl-CoA oxidase to advance fatty acid ?-oxidation, up-regulated the expressions of acyl-CoA synthetase long-chain family member 1, acyl-CoA synthetase long-chain family member 5, alpha-aminoadipic semialdehyde dehydrogenase and acyl-CoA dehydrogenase to promote fatty acid metabolism, and down-regulated the expressions of glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase, diacylglycerol acyltransferase 1 and diacylglycerol acyltransferase 2 to accelerate TG synthesis. However, dioscin had no effects on the expressions of sterol regulatory element-binding protein-1c, fatty acid synthase, acetyl-CoA carboxylase 1 and stearoyl-CoA desaturase 1 associated with fatty acid synthesis. In conclusion, dioscin shows excellent protective effect against ethanol-induced liver injury through ameliorating ethanol-induced oxidative stress, mitochondrial function, inflammatory cytokine production, apoptosis and liver steatosis, which should be developed as a new drug for the treatment of ethanol-induced liver injury in the future.
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Protective effects of the total saponins from Rosa laevigata Michx fruit against carbon tetrachloride-induced acute liver injury in mice.
Food Chem. Toxicol.
PUBLISHED: 07-08-2013
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Saponins are the major chemicals from Rosa laevigata Michx fruit. However, there have no papers to report the activities of the natural product against liver damage. In the present work, total saponins from R. laevigata Michx fruit (RLTS) with purity>70% was produced and then the protective effects of it against CCl4-induced acute liver injury in mice was tested. The results showed that RLTS decreased serum ALT and AST activities compared with model group, as well as the relative liver weight and histological findings. In addition, RLTS remarkably increased the levels of SOD, CAT, GSH-Px, GSH and decreased MDA, iNOS and NO levels in liver. Transmission electron microscopy and TUNEL assays showed that RLTS repaired fragmented DNA and mitochondrial change caused by CCl4. Further investigation demonstrated that RLTS pretreatment down-regulated the protein expression of CYP2E1, ATF6, GRP78, EIF2, COX-2, NF-?B, p53, Caspase-3, Caspase-9, Cytokeratin 18 and the levels of MAPKs phosphorylation, up-regulated Bcl-2 expression, and markedly decreased the gene expression of TNF-?, IL-6, Fas/FasL and Bax. This is the first time to reveal the hepatoprotective effect of total saponins from R. laevigata Michx fruit, which should be developed as a new drug for treatment of live injury in future.
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The first avian influenza A (H7N9) viral infection in humans in Zhejiang Province, China: a death report.
Front Med
PUBLISHED: 05-20-2013
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This study reports the first death caused by a novel avian influenza A (H7N9) virus in Zhejiang Province, China. The patient had chronic hepatitis B and history of exposure to poultry. The patient initially complained of diarrhea and influenza-like symptoms on March 7 and 14 respectively. The disease progressed to severe pneumonia, sustained hypoxia, and coagulation abnormalities. The patient died on March 27 because of respiratory failure, multiple organ failure, and disseminated intravascular coagulation without oseltamivir treatment. This H7N9 virus from Zhejiang is highly similar to isolates obtained from Shanghai, Jiangsu, Anhui, etc. Analysis of hemagglutinin, neuramidinase, and matrix genes indicated that the isolates share the same avian origin, have low virulence, and are sensitive to oseltamivir, but are resistant to adamantine. Only the isolate that caused the fatality exhibited substitution of Q226I in the HA gene, which indicates a potentially enhanced human affinity. The secondary transmission rate was 1.6% (2/125). Only two health workers presented with influenza-like symptoms, and they subsequently tested negative for H7N9 RNA. In conclusion, underlying disease, late diagnosis, and untimely antiviral treatment are possible high-risk factors for infections and death caused by the lowpathogenicity avian influenza A (H7N9). Person-to-person transmission of the H7N9 virus was not detected among close contacts, but such transmission should be investigated in the future. Expanding and enhancing surveillance will help in the early discovery and diagnosis of suspected cases, which will reduce the number of severe cases and deaths.
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Effects of flavonoids from Rosa laevigata Michx fruit against high-fat diet-induced non-alcoholic fatty liver disease in rats.
Food Chem
PUBLISHED: 05-06-2013
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The effects and mechanisms of the total flavonoids (TFs) from Rosa laevigata Michx fruit on high-fat diet-induced non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) were investigated in this study. Gavage administration of the TFs significantly decreased the relative liver weight, serum AST and ALT activities, the levels of serum lipid, LDL, blood glucose and insulin, suppressed lipid accumulation in liver, and increased serum HDL level. Moreover, the natural product significantly enhanced SOD activity, increased GSH-Px and GSH contents and decreased the concentration of MDA and CYP2E1 expression as well as prevented mitochondrial membrane potential dysfunctions and ultrastructural alterations. Further mechanism investigation indicated that the TFs inhibited hepatic lipid accumulation by suppressing the expressions of some key molecules in fatty acid synthesis pathway and promoting fatty acid ?-oxidation, while not by inhibiting cholesterol synthesis. On the base of these, the TFs should be developed as a new drug for treatment of NAFLD.
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Dioscin, a natural steroid saponin, induces apoptosis and DNA damage through reactive oxygen species: a potential new drug for treatment of glioblastoma multiforme.
Food Chem. Toxicol.
PUBLISHED: 05-02-2013
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Dioscin, a natural product obtained from medicinal plants shows lipid-lowering, anti-cancer and hepatoprotective effects. However, the effect of it on glioblastoma is unclear. In this study, dioscin significantly inhibited proliferation of C6 glioma cells and caused reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation and Ca(2+) release. ROS accumulation affected levels of malondialdehyde, nitric oxide, glutathione disulfide and glutathione, and caused cell apoptosis. In addition, ROS generation caused mitochondrial damage including structural changes, increased mitochondrial permeability transition and decreased mitochondria membrane potential, which led to the release of cytochrome C, nuclear translation of programmed cell death-5 and increased activities of caspase-3,9. Simultaneously, dioscin down-regulated protein expression of Bcl-2, Bcl-xl, up-regulated expression of Bak, Bax, Bid and cleaved poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase. Also, oxygen stress induced S-phase arrest of cancer cells by way of regulating expression of DNA Topo I, p53, CDK2 and Cyclin A and caused DNA damage. In a rat allograft model, dioscin significantly inhibited tumor size and extended the life cycle of the rats. In conclusion, dioscin shows noteworthy anti-cancer activity on glioblastoma cells by promoting ROS accumulation, inducing DNA damage and activating mitochondrial signal pathways. Ultimately, we believe dioscin has promise as a new therapy for the treatment of glioblastoma.
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Effect of recombinant adeno-associated virus mediated transforming growth factor-beta1 on corneal allograft survival after high-risk penetrating keratoplasty.
Transpl. Immunol.
PUBLISHED: 04-10-2013
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Corneal transplantation is one of the most common and successful transplant surgeries performed around the world. However, the high-risk corneal transplantation remains a high level of corneal graft failure. Gene transfer of immunomodulatory molecules is considered as one potential strategy in preventing allograft rejection. It is worthy evaluating the effects of the immunemodulating agent on corneal allograft rejection. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the effects and mechanisms of recombinant adeno-associated virus mediated transforming growth factor-beta1 (rAAV-TGF-beta1) on corneal allograft survival using a high-risk rat model after penetrating keratoplasty (PKP). The mean survival time (MST) of corneal grafts was observed and immuno-histochemical staining of TGF-beta1 and Ox-62 was performed in the study. The MST showed significant prolongation in the rAAV-TGF-beta1 group compared to the allograft group. The rejection index (RI) at day 10 revealed was significantly greater in the allograft group than that of the other two groups. Besides the increase of TGF-beta1, the expression of Ox-62 decreasing in rAAV-TGF-beta1 transplanted recipients was detected after transplantation. In short, treatment with rAAV-TGF-beta1 prolongs corneal allograft survival and inhibits the Ox-62 expression in grafts after high-risk PKP.
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A new GntR family regulator Ste1 in Streptomyces sp. 139.
Appl. Microbiol. Biotechnol.
PUBLISHED: 03-26-2013
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The novel exopolysaccharide Ebosin produced by Streptomyces sp. 139 has remarkable in vivo antirheumatic arthritis activity, and its biosynthesis gene cluster (ste) consisting of 27 ORFs has been identified. The present investigation focused on the function of ste1 gene. Database searching revealed that Ste1 is homologous to the GntR family regulator originated from microbes. To confirm its function in Ebosin biosynthesis, the gene was disrupted. The mutant strain Streptomyces sp. 139 D1 was found to have a much higher Ebosin production than that of the wild-type strain, whilst the complementation strain Streptomyces sp. 139 C1 showed a decrease in the exopolysaccharide produced. Real-time qPCR analysis indicated that in the mutant strain Streptomyces sp. 139 D1, transcription levels of gene ste5, ste8, and ste17 increased significantly compared with those in the wild-type strain. The electrophoretic mobility shift assay demonstrated that Ste1 binds with higher affinity to the promoter 1 and 3 regions in the ste gene cluster. It is concluded that ste1 plays the negative regulation as a transcription repressor during Ebosin biosynthesis. Growing on minimal agar medium supplemented with glucose and R2YE agar medium, the mutant strain Streptomyces sp. 139 D1 exhibited a Bld phenotype.
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Asymmetrical effects of mesophyll conductance on fundamental photosynthetic parameters and their relationships estimated from leaf gas exchange measurements.
Plant Cell Environ.
PUBLISHED: 03-01-2013
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Worldwide measurements of nearly 130 C3 species covering all major plant functional types are analyzed in conjunction with model simulations to determine the effects of mesophyll conductance (gm ) on photosynthetic parameters and their relationships estimated from A/Ci curves. We find that an assumption of infinite gm results in up to 75% underestimation for maximum carboxylation rate Vcmax , 60% for maximum electron transport rate Jmax , and 40% for triose phosphate utilization rate Tu . Vcmax is most sensitive, Jmax is less sensitive, and Tu has the least sensitivity to the variation of gm . Due to this asymmetrical effect of gm , the ratios of Jmax to Vcmax , Tu to Vcmax , and Tu to Jmax are all overestimated. An infinite gm assumption also limits the freedom of variation of estimated parameters and artificially constrains parameter relationships to stronger shapes. These findings suggest the importance of quantifying gm for understanding in-situ photosynthetic machinery functioning. We show that a nonzero resistance to CO2 movement in chloroplasts has small effects on estimated parameters. A nonlinear function with gm as input is developed to convert the parameters estimated under an assumption of infinite gm to proper values. This function will facilitate gm representation in global carbon cycle models.
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Anti-cancer effects of dioscin on three kinds of human lung cancer cell lines through inducing DNA damage and activating mitochondrial signal pathway.
Food Chem. Toxicol.
PUBLISHED: 02-26-2013
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Dioscin, a natural steroid saponin, has been widely investigated. However, its anti-cancer activities on human lung cancer cells are still unknown. In the present paper, the inhibitory effects of dioscin were investigated, and the results showed that dioscin inhibited the proliferation of human A549, NCI-H446 and NCI-H460 cancer cells. DNA damage and cell apoptosis in dioscin-treated cells were found through single cell gel electrophoresis and in situ terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick-end labeling assays. Furthermore, dioscin caused mitochondrial structure changes and blocked cell cycle at S phase based on transmission electron microscope and flow cytometry analysis. In addition, dioscin treatment caused the release of cytochrome c from mitochondria into cytosol. The activities of Caspase-3 and -9 in dioscin-treated groups were significantly increased compared with control group. Western blotting analysis showed that dioscin significantly down-regulated the expressions of Bcl-2 and Bcl-xl, and up-regulated the expressions of Bax, Bak and Bid. Our results indicate that dioscin has anticancer activities against human lung cancer cells through inducing cell cycle arrest, DNA damage and activating mitochondrial signal pathway.
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The value of the use of plasma B-type natriuretic peptide among acute ischemic stroke patients in a Chinese emergency department.
Clin Neurol Neurosurg
PUBLISHED: 02-23-2013
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To determine the value of the use of plasma B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) among acute ischemic stroke patients in a Chinese emergency department (ED).
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ShRNA targeting Notch1 sensitizes breast cancer stem cell to paclitaxel.
Int. J. Biochem. Cell Biol.
PUBLISHED: 02-22-2013
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Breast cancer is currently the most lethal gynecologic malignancy in many countries, and paclitaxel is a cornerstone in the treatment of this malignancy. Unfortunately, the efficacy of paclitaxel is limited due to the development of drug resistance. Evidence has suggested that cancer stem cells (CSCs) are involved in resistance to various forms of therapies, including chemotherapy. However, the interaction between paclitaxel resistance and CSCs and its underlying mechanisms have not been previously explored. In this study, we confirmed that paclitaxel enriched breast CSCs (CD44+/CD24-) in a dose-dependent manner in MCF-7 human breast cancer cell line. We then demonstrated that Notch1 was overexpressed in breast CSCs isolated from paclitaxel-treated MCF-7 cells compared to non-CSCs. The short hairpin RNA (shRNA) mediated knock-down of Notch1 inhibited MCF-7 cell proliferation and induced cell apoptosis. The anti-apoptosis protein NF-?B was decreased significantly when treated with shRNA-Notch1, and this effect was sharply improved by combination with paclitaxel. Paclitaxel decreased CD44+/CD24- cell population in MCF-7 cells and reduced the size and number of primary mammospheres after down-regulating the Notch1. Furthermore, shRNA-Notch1 inhibited the growth of tumor xenografts in nude mice noticeably. RT-PCR and Western blotting analysis showed that the expressions of ALDH1, NICD, Hes-1 and the drug transporter ABCG2 were decreased both in vitro and in vivo. These results suggest that Notch1 might play a critical role in the resistance to paclitaxel, and targeting Notch1 may have important clinical applications in cancer therapy.
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Transformation optics for antennas: why limit the bandwidth with metamaterials?
Sci Rep
PUBLISHED: 02-12-2013
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In the last decade, a technique termed transformation optics has been developed for the design of novel electromagnetic devices. This method defines the exact modification of magnetic and dielectric constants required, so that the electromagnetic behaviour remains invariant after a transformation to a new coordinate system. Despite the apparently infinite possibilities that this mathematical tool introduces, one restriction has repeatedly recurred since its conception: limited frequency bands of operation. Here we circumvent this problem with the proposal of a full dielectric implementation of a transformed planar hyperbolic lens which retains the same focusing properties of an original curved lens. The redesigned lens demonstrates operation with high directivity and low side lobe levels for an ultra-wide band of frequencies, spanning over three octaves. The methodology proposed in this paper can be applied to revolutionise the design of many electromagnetic devices overcoming bandwidth limitations.
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The use of sensitive chemical antibodies for diagnosis: detection of low levels of EpCAM in breast cancer.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-24-2013
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EpCAM is expressed at low levels in a variety of normal human epithelial tissues, but is overexpressed in 70-90% of carcinomas. From a clinico-pathological point of view, this has both prognostic and therapeutic significance. EpCAM was first suggested as a therapeutic target for the treatment of epithelial cancers in the 1990s. However, following several immunotherapy trials, the results have been mixed. It has been suggested that this is due, at least in part, to an unknown level of EpCAM expression in the tumors being targeted. Thus, selection of patients who would benefit from EpCAM immunotherapy by determining EpCAM status in the tumor biopsies is currently undergoing vigorous evaluation. However, current EpCAM antibodies are not robust enough to be able to detect EpCAM expression in all pathological tissues. Here we report a newly developed EpCAM RNA aptamer, also known as a chemical antibody, which is not only specific but also more sensitive than current antibodies for the detection of EpCAM in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded primary breast cancers. This new aptamer, together with our previously described aptamer, showed no non-specific staining or cross-reactivity with tissues that do not express EpCAM. They were able to reliably detect target proteins in breast cancer xenograft where an anti-EpCAM antibody (323/A3) showed limited or no reactivity. Our results demonstrated a more robust detection of EpCAM using RNA aptamers over antibodies in clinical samples with chromogenic staining. This shows the potential of aptamers in the future of histopathological diagnosis and as a tool to guide targeted immunotherapy.
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Enhanced tumorigenesis and lymphatic metastasis of CD133+ hepatocarcinoma ascites syngeneic cell lines mediated by JNK signaling pathway in vitro and in vivo.
Biomed. Pharmacother.
PUBLISHED: 01-08-2013
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Cancer stem cells (CSCs), stem-like cells, or tumor-initiating cells (TICs) may initiate tumorigenesis and metastasis, but neither the basic cell biology of CSCs nor the mechanisms of CSC-mediated tumor growth and lymphoid node metastasis are understood. Evidence suggests that CSC phenotype is maintained, at least in part, by altered JNK signaling. In this study, factors influencing the growth and metastatic potential of CSCs were examined by comparing CD133 surface antigen expression, proliferation, clonogenicity, invasive capacity, tumorigenicity, and expression of JNK-associated signaling molecules between the highly metastatic mouse hepatocarcinoma ascites syngeneic cell line Hca-F and the low metastasis potential line Hca-P. The Hca-F line exhibited higher clonogenic, proliferative, and invasive capacities than Hca-P cells, and a greater proportion of Hca-F cells were CD133 positive. In both cell lines, the CD133+ subpopulation showed significantly enhanced tumorigenicity and metastatic potential. An in vivo tumorigenicity assay in nude mice indicated that Hca-F cells possessed significantly higher tumorigenicity than Hca-P cells as indicated by larger tumors after inoculation. Expression levels of E-cadherin (CDH1), annexin VII, and JNK1 proteins were inversely correlated with CD133 expression in both Hca-F and Hca-P cells. These results demonstrate that CD133+ subpopulations of both Hca-F and Hca-P lines show CSC-like properties. However, Hca-F cells showed greater tumorigenicity and invasiveness, consistent with greater lymphatic metastasis capacity. We propose that tumorigenesis and lymphatic metastasis are regulated by JNK/P53/annexin VII and JNK/ATF-2/CDH1/annexin VII signal transduction pathways.
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Time?order effects of vitamin C on hexavalent chromium?induced mitochondrial damage and DNA?protein crosslinks in cultured rat peripheral blood lymphocytes.
Mol Med Rep
PUBLISHED: 01-03-2013
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Hexavalent chromium [Cr(VI)] and its compounds have extensive applications in many industries and are widely known to cause occupational diseases as well as carcinogenic effects in humans. Mitochondrial damage, which is important in Cr(VI)?induced cytotoxicity, may be characterized by the opening status of the permeability transition pore, the maintenance of the mitochondrial membrane potential and the level of malondialdehyde. The formation of DNA?protein crosslinks (DPCs) in target tissues appears to be the direct and primary genotoxic effect of Cr(VI) exposure, and the lymphocytic DPCs may be viewed as a biomarker of internal Cr(VI) accumulation. It is well known that vitamin C (vit C) is an important biological reducing agent in humans and animals, which is capable of reducing Cr(VI). Regardless of the evidence from cell culture and in vivo experiments of the protective effect of the antioxidant, vit C, following exposure to Cr(VI), no studies have been conducted to date to demonstrate the time?order effects of vit C on Cr(VI)?induced mitochondrial damage and DPC formation. In the present study, by using peripheral blood lymphocytes from Sprague?Dawley rats, we demonstrated that vit C pre? and co?treatment have a protective effect against Cr(VI)?induced loss of cell viability and mitochondrial damage, while only vit C co?treatment has a protective effect against the Cr(VI)?induced increase in DPCs. The mechanistic investigation revealed that cellular reactive oxygen species levels are correlated with Cr(VI)?induced mitochondrial damage, and that p53 expression is correlated with the Cr(VI)?induced increase in DPCs. We concluded that vit C exerts different time?order effects on Cr(VI)?induced mitochondrial damage and DPC formation, and that biomarkers, including DPC and p53, may be used in the assessment of the development of Cr(VI)?induced cancer. These findings facilitate more detailed follow?up of the Cr(VI)?exposure populations for secondary prevention.
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In vitro anti-proliferative effects of Zuojinwan on eight kinds of human cancer cell lines.
Cytotechnology
PUBLISHED: 01-02-2013
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Zuojinwan (ZJW), a famous Chinese medicinal formula, contains two medicinal herbs Coptis chinese Frach and Evodia rutaecarpa (Juss.) Benth in the ratio of 6: 1. The inhibitory effects of ZJW on eight kinds of human cancer cell lines including SMMC-7721, BEL-7402, BEL-7404, HepG2, A549, NCI-H446, NCI-H460 and HCT- 116 cells were evaluated, and the possible mechanism was investigated. The growths of the eight kinds of cancer cells were inhibited by ZJW assessed through MTT assay. Flow cytometry assay revealed a sub-G1 peak with reduced DNA content was formed. The cell cycle was arrested in the G0/G1 phase in ZJW-treated SMMC-7721 and HepG2 cells, and in the S phase for NCI-H460 cells. Significant DNA damage was produced by ZJW assessed with single-cell gel electrophoresis assay. Morphological changes were also observed. Caspase-3 and -9 activities were increased following ZJW treatment. Western blot analysis showed that Bax and Bak protein levels were increased after ZJW treatment, while Bcl-2 and Bcl-xl protein levels were decreased. Our results suggest that ZJW has significant anti-cancer activities due to induction of mitochondria- dependent apoptosis pathway. Therefore, ZJW has the potential to be a novel chemotherapy drug to treat hepatoma, lung cancer and colon cancer by suppressing tumor growth.
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Multimerization and aggregation of native-state insulin: effect of zinc.
Langmuir
PUBLISHED: 12-05-2011
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The aggregation of insulin is complicated by the coexistence of various multimers, especially in the presence of Zn(2+). Most investigations of insulin multimerization tend to overlook aggregation kinetics, while studies of insulin aggregation generally pay little attention to multimerization. A clear understanding of the starting multimer state of insulin is necessary for the elucidation of its aggregation mechanism. In this work, the native-state aggregation of insulin as either the Zn-insulin hexamer or the Zn-free dimer was studied by turbidimetry and dynamic light scattering, at low ionic strength and pH near pI. The two states were achieved by varying the Zn(2+) content of insulin at low concentrations, in accordance with size-exclusion chromatography results and literature findings (Tantipolphan, R.; Romeijn, S.; Engelsman, J. d.; Torosantucci, R.; Rasmussen, T.; Jiskoot, W. J. Pharm. Biomed. 2010, 52, 195). The much greater aggregation rate and limiting turbidity (?(?)) for the Zn-insulin hexamer relative to the Zn-free dimer was explained by their different aggregation mechanisms. Sequential first-order kinetic regimes and the concentration dependence of ?(?) for the Zn-insulin hexamer indicate a nucleation and growth mechanism, as proposed by Wang and Kurganov (Wang, K.; Kurganov, B. I. Biophys. Chem. 2003, 106, 97). The pure second-order process for the Zn-free dimer suggests isodesmic aggregation, consistent with the literature. The aggregation behavior at an intermediate Zn(2+) concentration appears to be the sum of the two processes.
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Electrostatic selectivity in protein-nanoparticle interactions.
Biomacromolecules
PUBLISHED: 06-13-2011
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The binding of bovine serum albumin (BSA) and ?-lactoglobulin (BLG) to TTMA (a cationic gold nanoparticle coupled to 3,6,9,12-tetraoxatricosan-1-aminium, 23-mercapto-N,N,N-trimethyl) was studied by high-resolution turbidimetry (to observe a critical pH for binding), dynamic light scattering (to monitor particle growth), and isothermal titration calorimetry (to measure binding energetics), all as a function of pH and ionic strength. Distinctively higher affinities observed for BLG versus BSA, despite the lower pI of the latter, were explained in terms of their different charge anisotropies, namely, the negative charge patch of BLG. To confirm this effect, we studied two isoforms of BLG that differ in only two amino acids. Significantly stronger binding to BLGA could be attributed to the presence of the additional aspartates in the negative charge domain for the BLG dimer, best portrayed in DelPhi. This selectivity decreases at low ionic strength, at which both isoforms bind well below pI. Selectivity increases with ionic strength for BLG versus BSA, which binds above pI. This result points to the diminished role of long-range repulsions for binding above pI. Dynamic light scattering reveals a tendency for higher-order aggregation for TTMA-BSA at pH above the pI of BSA, due to its ability to bridge nanoparticles. In contrast, soluble BLG-TTMA complexes were stable over a range of pH because the charge anisotropy of this protein at makes it unable to bridge nanoparticles. Finally, isothermal titration calorimetry shows endoenthalpic binding for all proteins: the higher affinity of TTMA for BLGA versus BLGB comes from a difference in the dominant entropy term.
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Observed increase in local cooling effect of deforestation at higher latitudes.
Nature
PUBLISHED: 06-05-2011
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Deforestation in mid- to high latitudes is hypothesized to have the potential to cool the Earths surface by altering biophysical processes. In climate models of continental-scale land clearing, the cooling is triggered by increases in surface albedo and is reinforced by a land albedo-sea ice feedback. This feedback is crucial in the model predictions; without it other biophysical processes may overwhelm the albedo effect to generate warming instead. Ongoing land-use activities, such as land management for climate mitigation, are occurring at local scales (hectares) presumably too small to generate the feedback, and it is not known whether the intrinsic biophysical mechanism on its own can change the surface temperature in a consistent manner. Nor has the effect of deforestation on climate been demonstrated over large areas from direct observations. Here we show that surface air temperature is lower in open land than in nearby forested land. The effect is 0.85 ± 0.44 K (mean ± one standard deviation) northwards of 45° N and 0.21 ± 0.53 K southwards. Below 35° N there is weak evidence that deforestation leads to warming. Results are based on comparisons of temperature at forested eddy covariance towers in the USA and Canada and, as a proxy for small areas of cleared land, nearby surface weather stations. Night-time temperature changes unrelated to changes in surface albedo are an important contributor to the overall cooling effect. The observed latitudinal dependence is consistent with theoretical expectation of changes in energy loss from convection and radiation across latitudes in both the daytime and night-time phase of the diurnal cycle, the latter of which remains uncertain in climate models.
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Engineering the logical properties of a genetic AND gate.
Methods Mol. Biol.
PUBLISHED: 05-10-2011
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Synthetic biology promises to enhance our ability to control biological systems by creating a systematic approach for the construction of genetic circuits that reliably program cellular function. As part of this approach, efficient methods are needed for the tuning of genetic circuits so as to allow for optimization of a design despite varying cellular contexts and incomplete understanding of in vivo biological interactions. Here we outline an optimization method that we have used to improve the logical responses of a genetic AND logic gate derived from components of the LuxI-LuxR bacterial quorum-sensing system. Basing our approach on the idea of evolutionary design, we improved the properties of our genetic AND logic gate by using directed evolution and a two-step screening process to alter the activities of the LuxR transcriptional activator. Using this method, we were able to rapidly enhance the AND gates logical responses and have increased the specificities of these responses by ?1.5-fold.
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Overexpression of Hedgehog signaling molecules and its involvement in triple-negative breast cancer.
Oncol Lett
PUBLISHED: 03-29-2011
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The purpose of this study was to investigate the activation of Hedgehog (Hh) signaling molecules and its involvement in triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC). A total of 123 cases of paraffin blocks, including 83 cases of primary breast carcinoma, 30 cases of mammary hyperplasia and 10 cases of normal breast tissue, were immunohistochemically analyzed for Sonic Hedgehog (SHH), Patched-1 (PTCH1), Smoothened (SMO) and glioma-associated oncogene homoglog 1 (GLI1) expression. The expression of SMO and GLI1 in TNBC was significantly increased in comparison to non-triple-negative breast cancer (nTNBC). GLI1 expression manifested an inverse association with the estrogen receptor. The levels of GLI1 expression were increased in lymph node-positive cases. The expression of SHH and SMO was increased in high histological grades. Furthermore, the expression of SMO and GLI1 was correlated with superior tumor stage. The expression of SHH, SMO and GLI1 was significantly increased in breast cancer and mammary hyperplasia. PTCH1 expression was significantly decreased in breast cancer compared to mammary hyperplasia and normal breast tissue. For the first time, clinical evidence has been provided in support of significant roles of Hh signaling in TNBC. Hh signaling is involved in breast ductal changes and malignant transformation. Measures to inhibit Hh activity may improve the prognosis of TNBC patients.
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Protein purification by polyelectrolyte coacervation: influence of protein charge anisotropy on selectivity.
Biomacromolecules
PUBLISHED: 03-17-2011
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The effect of polyelectrolyte binding affinity on selective coacervation of proteins with the cationic polyelectrolyte, poly(diallyldimethylammonium chloride) (PDADMAC), was investigated for bovine serum albumin/?-lactoglobulin (BSA/BLG) and for the isoforms BLG-A/BLG-B. High-sensitivity turbidimetric titrations were used to define conditions of complex formation and coacervation (pH(c) and pH(?), respectively) as a function of ionic strength. The resultant phase boundaries, essential for the choice of conditions for selective coacervation for the chosen protein pairs, are nonmonotonic with respect to ionic strength, for both pH(c) and pH(?). These results are explained in the context of short-range attraction/long-range repulsion governing initial protein binding "on the wrong side of pI" and also subsequent phase separation due to charge neutralization. The stronger binding of BLG despite its higher isoelectric point, inferred from lower pH(c), is shown to result from the negative "charge patch" on BLG, absent for BSA, as visualized via computer modeling (DelPhi). The higher affinity of BLG versus BSA was also confirmed by isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC). The relative values of pH(?) for the two proteins show complex salt dependence so that the choice of ionic strength determines the order of coacervation, whereas the choice of pH controls the yield of the target protein. Coacervation at I = 100 mM, pH 7, of BLG from a 1:1 (w/w) mixture with BSA was shown by SEC to provide 90% purity of BLG with a 20-fold increase in concentration. Ultrafiltration was shown to remove effectively the polymer from the target protein. The relationship between protein charge anisotropy and binding affinity and between binding affinity and selective coacervation, inferred from the results for BLG/BSA, was tested using the isoforms of BLG. Substitution of glycine in BLG-B by aspartate in BLG-A lowers pH(c) by 0.2, as anticipated on the basis of DelPhi modeling. The stronger binding of BLG-A, confirmed by ITC, led to a difference in pH(?) that was sufficient to provide enrichment by a factor of 2 for BLG-A in the coacervate formed from "native BLG".
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Orthogonal test design for optimization of suitable conditions to separate C-phycocyanin from Spirulina platensis by high-speed counter-current chromatography using reverse micelle solvent system.
J Sep Sci
PUBLISHED: 02-15-2011
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High-speed counter-current chromatography (HSCCC) was applied to separate C-phycocyanin (C-PC) from Spirulina platensis in the article. The suitable conditions were optimized by an orthogonal test design (L(9)(3)(3)), including the stationary phase of reverse micelle solvent system (0.10 g/mL cetyltrimethylammonium bromide [CTAB]/isooctane-hexylalcohol), mobile phase A (0.05 mol/L sodium phosphate buffer, pH 4.0, containing 0.2 mol/L KCl) and mobile phase B (0.05 mol/L sodium phosphate buffer, pH 8.0, containing 0.4 mol/L KCl). Under the selected conditions, 78.7 mg protein was purified from 200 mg crude extract of S. platensis, and the purity of the product was 4.25 based on the absorbance ratio of A(620)/A(280) , which was increased 6.85 times compared with the crude extract. Then, the protein was identified to be C-PC by MALDI-TOF/TOF-MS and sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) analysis compared with the standard. The application of HSCCC used in the separation of C-PC from S. platensis was first reported in the article. Furthermore, three kinds of tumor cell lines including human hepatoma cell line SMMC-7721, human ovarian carcinoma cell line ES-2, and human lung adenocarcinoma cell line SPCA-1 were used to evaluate the anticancer activities of the separated product, and the results showed that the separated C-PC had excellent anti-tumor actions with the IC(50) values at 2.998, 4.854, and 8.423 ?g/mL, respectively, for 48 h treatment. The outcome indicates that an effective method for C-PC purification by HSCCC has been established.
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Factors that have an effect on degradation of diclofenac in aqueous solution by gamma ray irradiation.
Environ Sci Pollut Res Int
PUBLISHED: 01-24-2011
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Gamma ray irradiation is considered as an effective way to degrade diclofenac. However, due to the extensive coexisting substances in natural waters, the use of gamma ray irradiation for degradation is often influenced by multiple factors. The various factors that affect degradation efficiency, such as initial diclofenac concentration, initial pH, and the concentration of the additives including H(2)O(2) (·OH radical promoter), CH(3)OH (·OH radical scavenger), thiourea (·OH, H·, and e (aq) (-) scavenger), humic acid, and NO(3)(-) (coexisting substances in natural waters), are investigated. Furthermore, possible intermediate products are identified and corresponding transformation pathways are proposed.
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In vitro characterization of GS-8374, a novel phosphonate-containing inhibitor of HIV-1 protease with a favorable resistance profile.
Antimicrob. Agents Chemother.
PUBLISHED: 01-18-2011
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GS-8374 is a novel bis-tetrahydrofuran HIV-1 protease (PR) inhibitor (PI) with a unique diethylphosphonate moiety. It was selected from a series of analogs containing various di(alkyl)phosphonate substitutions connected via a linker to the para position of a P-1 phenyl ring. GS-8374 inhibits HIV-1 PR with high potency (K(i) = 8.1 pM) and with no known effect on host proteases. Kinetic and thermodynamic analysis of GS-8374 binding to PR demonstrated an extremely slow off rate for the inhibitor and favorable contributions of both the enthalpic and entropic components to the total free binding energy. GS-8374 showed potent antiretroviral activity in T-cell lines, primary CD4(+) T cells (50% effective concentration [EC(50)] = 3.4 to 11.5 nM), and macrophages (EC(50) = 25.5 nM) and exhibited low cytotoxicity in multiple human cell types. The antiviral potency of GS-8374 was only moderately affected by human serum protein binding, and its combination with multiple approved antiretrovirals showed synergistic effects. When it was tested in a PhenoSense assay against a panel of 24 patient-derived viruses with high-level PI resistance, GS-8374 showed lower mean EC(50)s and lower fold resistance than any of the clinically approved PIs. Similar to other PIs, in vitro hepatic microsomal metabolism of GS-8374 was efficiently blocked by ritonavir, suggesting a potential for effective pharmacokinetic boosting in vivo. In summary, results from this broad in vitro pharmacological profiling indicate that GS-8374 is a promising candidate to be further assessed as a new antiretroviral agent with potential for clinical efficacy in both treatment-naïve and -experienced patients.
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GS-8374, a novel HIV protease inhibitor, does not alter glucose homeostasis in cultured adipocytes or in a healthy-rodent model system.
Antimicrob. Agents Chemother.
PUBLISHED: 01-18-2011
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Adverse effects induced by HIV protease inhibitors (PIs) are a significant factor in limiting their clinical success. PIs directly contribute to peripheral insulin resistance and alterations in lipid metabolism. GS-8374 is a novel PI with potent antiretroviral activity and a favorable resistance profile. Here we report on the potential of GS-8374 to adversely affect glucose and lipid homeostasis. Acute effects of GS-8374 and control PIs on glucose uptake and lipid accumulation were assessed in vitro in mouse OP9 and primary human adipocytes, respectively. GS-8374 and atazanavir showed no effect on insulin-stimulated deoxyglucose uptake, whereas ritonavir and lopinavir caused significant reductions. Similarly, in vitro lipid accumulation was not significantly affected in adipocytes treated with either GS-8374 or atazanavir. In euglycemic-hyperinsulinemic clamp experiments performed in rats during acute infusion of therapeutic levels of PIs, sustained serum GS-8374 levels of 8 ?M had no effect on peripheral glucose disposal (similar to the findings for atazanavir). Comparable serum levels of lopinavir and ritonavir produced acute 19% and 53% reductions in in vivo glucose disposal, respectively. In conclusion, similar to atazanavir, but unlike ritonavir and lopinavir, GS-8374 neither affects insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in adipocytes in culture nor acutely alters peripheral glucose disposal in a rodent model system. These results dissociate the antiretroviral activity of GS-8374 from adverse effects on insulin sensitivity observed with some of the first-generation PIs and provide further support for the use of these experimental systems in the preclinical evaluation of novel PIs.
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ApoER2 and VLDLR in the developing human telencephalon.
Eur. J. Paediatr. Neurol.
PUBLISHED: 01-07-2011
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The Reelin-Dab1 signaling pathway plays a crucial role in regulating the migration and position of cortical neurons during the development of the cerebral cortex. Mutation in Reelin may result in severe developmental disorders such as autosomal recessive lissencephaly. Apolipoprotein E receptor type-2 (ApoER2) and very low-density lipoprotein receptor (VLDLR) are canonical receptors of Reelin, through which extracellular Reelin activates the intracellular adapter, Disabled1(Dab1), and subsequently interacts with other molecules. Although it is widely accepted that ApoER2 and VLDLR are indispensable components of the Reelin signaling pathway, little is known of their expression pattern in the laminated developing human brain. Here, we collected 18 cases of human fetal brains of 6-18 gestational weeks (GW) old and examined the expression of ApoER2 and VLDLR in the their telencephalon using immunocytochemical staining. We found that both receptors were absent in the preplate (PP) and the earliest stage of the cortical plate (CP). In later stages of CP development, ApoER2 was expressed earlier than VLDLR in the migrating neurons. Thus, the Reelin-Dab1 signaling pathway may not be involved in the formation of the preplate and deep layers of the CP. Instead, the pathway may act on neurons that are destined to form the more superficial layers of the CP. In addition, the pathway required ApoER2 only rather than both ApoER2 and VLDLR at the initiation of activity.
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SAR studies on dihydropyrimidinone antibiotics.
Bioorg. Med. Chem. Lett.
PUBLISHED: 01-05-2011
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There is an urgent need for the development of novel antimicrobial agents that offer effective treatment against MRSA. Using a new class of dipeptide antibiotic TAN-1057A/B as lead, we designed, synthesized and evaluated analogs of TAN-1057A/B. Several novel dihydropyrimidinone antibiotics demonstrating comparable antibiotic efficacy while possessing favorable selectivity were identified.
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Development and use of a medication history service associated with a health information exchange: architecture and preliminary findings.
AMIA Annu Symp Proc
PUBLISHED: 11-13-2010
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We describe our early experience with use in emergency department settings of a standards-based medication history service integrated into a health information exchange (HIE). The service sends queries from one Exchanges emergency department interface both to a local ambulatory care system and to the medication hub services provided by a second HIE. This second HIE in turn sends requests to SureScripts and returns histories for incorporation into the first Exchanges clinical interface. The service caches all requests to avoid costly duplicate query charges and maintains an account of queries, registered users, charges, and results obtained. Usage may be increasing as additional retail pharmacy data become available. Early results suggest that research and development emphasis requirements will of necessity shift from obtaining prescription medication history to finding new means to ensuring effective use.
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Application of proteomic and bioinformatic techniques for studying the hepatoprotective effect of dioscin against CCl?-induced liver damage in mice.
Planta Med.
PUBLISHED: 10-26-2010
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In this study, the significant hepatoprotective effect of dioscin against CCl?-induced acute liver damage in mice was first discovered, and the effect produced by dioscin at the dose of 100 mg/kg was equal to the action produced by silymarin at the dose of 200 mg/kg. Then, 1-dimension gel electrophoresis was used to separate the liver proteins, and five differentially expressed bands were selected. After in-gel digestion, 71 proteins were identified by nano-RP-HPLC-ESI-MS/MS/MS. Further network analysis suggested that the identified proteins formed a connected protein interaction subnetwork. Ten functional categories were selected to demonstrate the distribution of the proteins by Gene Ontology (GO) enrichment analysis. Six of the proteins, heat shock protein 5 (HSPA5), annexin 6 (ANXA6), isovaleryl-CoA dehydrogenase (IVD), ribosomal protein S6 (RPS6), cytoglobin (Cygb), and nucleoside diphosphate kinase A (NDPK-A), were validated by Western blotting assay. They might be involved in the hepatoprotective effect of dioscin, and their investigation could be useful, together with the determination of serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) levels, as well as the liver histopathologic study, for the elucidation of the action mechanisms of dioscin against CCl?-induced liver injury. Our work shows that the validated proteins should be considered as biomarkers for the investigation of acute liver injury, and its results should contribute to the therapy of liver damage by dioscin in the future.
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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.