Conventional evaluation methods of chemotherapeutic efficacy such as tissue biopsy and anatomical measurement are either invasive with potential complications or dilatory to capture the rapid pathological changes. Here, a sensitive and resolution-scalable photoacoustic microscopy (PAM) with theranostic nanoformulation was developed to noninvasively monitor the therapy response in a timely manner. Ultrasmall graphene oxide (GO) nanosheets were designed as both drug loading vehicle and photoacoustic signal amplifier to the tumor. With the signal enhancement by the injected contrast agents, the subtle microvascular changes of the chemotherapy response in tumor were advantagely revealed by our PAM system, which was much earlier than the morphological measurement by standard imaging techniques. High tumor uptake of the enhanced nanodrug with Cy5.5 labeling was validated by fluorescence imaging. At different observation scales, PAM offered unprecedented sensitivity of optical absorption and high spatial resolution over optical imaging. Our studies demonstrate the PAM system with synergistic theranostic strategy to be multiplexing platforms for tumor diagnosis, drug delivery, and chemotherapy response monitoring in a very early stage and effective way.
Plant guard cells gate CO2 uptake and transpirational water loss through stomatal pores. As a result of decades of experimental investigation, there is an abundance of information on the involvement of specific proteins and secondary messengers in the regulation of stomatal movements and on the pairwise relationships between guard cell components. We constructed a multi-level dynamic model of guard cell signal transduction during light-induced stomatal opening and of the effect of the plant hormone abscisic acid (ABA) on this process. The model integrates into a coherent network the direct and indirect biological evidence regarding the regulation of seventy components implicated in stomatal opening. Analysis of this signal transduction network identified robust cross-talk between blue light and ABA, in which [Ca2+]c plays a key role, and indicated an absence of cross-talk between red light and ABA. The dynamic model captured more than 1031 distinct states for the system and yielded outcomes that were in qualitative agreement with a wide variety of previous experimental results. We obtained novel model predictions by simulating single component knockout phenotypes. We found that under white light or blue light, over 60%, and under red light, over 90% of all simulated knockouts had similar opening responses as wild type, showing that the system is robust against single node loss. The model revealed an open question concerning the effect of ABA on red light-induced stomatal opening. We experimentally showed that ABA is able to inhibit red light-induced stomatal opening, and our model offers possible hypotheses for the underlying mechanism, which point to potential future experiments. Our modelling methodology combines simplicity and flexibility with dynamic richness, making it well suited for a wide class of biological regulatory systems.
Ovarian cancer ranks fifth in cancer deaths among women, accounting for more deaths than any other cancer of the female reproductive system. Monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) is highly expressed in various malignancies and promotes carcinogenesis. The aim of the study was to investigate the association between MCP-1 genetic polymorphisms and the susceptibility to ovarian cancer. MCP-1 rs1024611A/G and rs3760396C/G polymorphisms were examined in 257 ovarian cancer patients and 273 healthy controls. We found that distributions of rs1024611GG genotype and rs3760396GG genotype were clearly increased in ovarian cancer cases compared to healthy donors (odds ratio [OR]=1.93, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.13-3.29, p=0.015; OR=3.89, 95% CI: 1.63-9.33, p=0.001). Stratification analyses revealed that patients with serous papillary type had further increased percentage of rs3760396GG genotype than those with other types (OR=3.89, 95% CI: 1.11-13.66, p=0.024). In addition, we evaluated the possible effect of MCP-1 polymorphisms on gene expression by examining the serum level of MCP-1 in patients and controls. Data revealed that subjects carrying rs1024611AG and GG genotypes had a significantly higher serum level of MCP-1 than those with AA genotype. These data suggest that MCP-1 rs1024611A/G and rs3760396C/G polymorphisms are associated with increased susceptibility to ovarian cancer, in which rs1024611A/G may increase serum level of MCP-1 in the Chinese population.
The aim of this study was to determine the association of the microRNA-146a (miR-146a) polymorphism with the risk of diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL). The genotyping of miR-146a rs2910164 polymorphism was detected by polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP). The results showed that CC genotype and C alleles distribution in the DLBCL patient was significantly higher than that of the controls (p = 0.01 and p = 0.01, respectively). No significant differences were found between the two subgroups when stratified by clinical characteristics including sexual, age at admission, performance status, pathological type, Ann Arbor stage, LDH and ?2-MG value. The miR-146a expression was detected by the Taqman real-time PCR. The result showed that the miR-146a expression was notably upregulated in DLBCL patients when compared with controls (p = 0.02). In addition, the miR-146a expression of CC genotypes subgroup was drastically downregulated than that of GC/GG genotype subgroup in DLBCL patients (p = 0.0003), suggesting that this polymorphism can functionally affect the expression of miR-146a. In conclusion, it was shown that the miR-146a rs2910164 polymorphism is associated with the risk of DLBCL in the Chinese Han population.
Psychological positive health and health complaints have long been ignored scientifically. Sleep plays a critical role in children and adolescents development. We aimed at studying the association of sleep duration and quality with psychological positive health and health complaints in children and adolescents from southern Spain.
In this paper, a novel multiple sub-models maintenance technique, named maintaining and processing sub-models (MAPS), is proposed. MAPS aims to enhance the ability of estimation of distribution algorithms (EDAs) on multimodal problems. The advantages of MAPS over the existing multiple sub-models based EDAs stem from the explicit detection of the promising areas, which can save many function evaluations for exploration and thus accelerate the optimization speed. MAPS can be combined with any EDA that adopts a single Gaussian model. The performance of MAPS has been assessed through empirical studies where MAPS is integrated with three different types of EDAs. The experimental results show that MAPS can lead to much faster convergence speed and obtain more stable solutions than the compared algorithms on 12 benchmark problems.
High-efficiency bulk heterojunction (BHJ) organic solar cells with power conversion efficiencies of more than 5?% can be fabricated using the green solvent 2-MeTHF. The active layers comprise a blend of a molecular semiconductor donor with intermediate dimensions (X2) and the soluble fullerene derivative [6,6]-phenyl-C61 -butyricacidoctylester (PC61 BC8 ). A switch of the processing solvent from chloroform to 2-MeTHF leads to no negative impacts on the morphology and charge-transport properties of optimally performing BHJ films. Examinations by absorption spectroscopy, atomic force microscopy, and grazing incidence wide-angle X-ray scattering reveal no significant modification of morphology. These results show that green solvents can be excellent alternatives for large-area printing of high-performance organic photovoltaics (OPVs) and thus open new opportunities for sustainable mass production of organic solar cells and other optoelectronic devices.
Physical stimuli can act in either a synergistic or antagonistic manner to regulate cell fate decisions, but it is less clear whether insoluble signals alone can direct human pluripotent stem (hPS) cell differentiation into specialized cell types. We previously reported that stiff materials promote nuclear localization of the Yes-associated protein (YAP) transcriptional coactivator and support long-term self-renewal of hPS cells. Here, we show that even in the presence of soluble pluripotency factors, compliant substrata inhibit the nuclear localization of YAP and promote highly efficient differentiation of hPS cells into postmitotic neurons. In the absence of neurogenic factors, the effective substrata produce neurons rapidly (2 wk) and more efficiently (>75%) than conventional differentiation methods. The neurons derived from substrate induction express mature markers and possess action potentials. The hPS differentiation observed on compliant surfaces could be recapitulated on stiff surfaces by adding small-molecule inhibitors of F-actin polymerization or by depleting YAP. These studies reveal that the matrix alone can mediate differentiation of hPS cells into a mature cell type, independent of soluble inductive factors. That mechanical cues can override soluble signals suggests that their contributions to early tissue development and lineage commitment are profound.
Resistance to Imatinib mesylate (IM) is an emerging problem for patients with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML). T315I mutation in the Bcr-Abl is the predominant mechanism of the acquired resistance to IM and second generation tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKI). Therefore it is urgent to search for new measures to overcome TKI-resistance. Auranofin (AF), clinically used to treat rheumatic arthritis, was recently approved by US Food and Drug Administration for Phase II clinical trial to treat cancer. In contrast to the reports that AF induces apoptosis by increasing intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels via inhibiting thioredoxin reductase, our recent study revealed that AF-induced apoptosis depends on inhibition of proteasomal deubiquitinases (UCHL5 and USP14). Here we report that (i) AF induces apoptosis in both Bcr-Abl wild-type cells and Bcr-Abl-T315I mutation cells and inhibits the growth of IM-resistant Bcr-Abl-T315I xenografts in vivo; (ii) AF inhibits Bcr-Abl through both downregulation of Bcr-Abl gene expression and Bcr-Abl cleavage mediated by proteasome inhibition-induced caspase activation; (iii) proteasome inhibition but not ROS is required for AF-induced caspase activation and apoptosis. These findings support that AF overcomes IM resistance through both Bcr/Abl-dependent and -independent mechanisms, providing great clinical significance for cancer treatment.
There is a close neuroanatomical connection between odor and emotional processing. Olfactory dysfunction is found in various neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric disorders. Here, mice take the cyclic nucleotide gated channel 2 mutant gene (Cnga2), which is critical for olfactory sensory neurons to generate odor induced action potentials were used. The Cnga2 mice were congenitally anosmic. Adult mice were tested in a series behavioral paradigm such as open field, light/dark box, forced swim test and Y-maze. Our study found that Cnga2 mice showed increased anxiety- and depressive-like behaviors than their wide type siblings. However, Cnga2 mice showed no difference from the wide types when tested in the two-trial recognition Y-maze. The results indicate that innate olfactory deficiency might modulate emotional behaviors in mice.
Shewanella oneidensis MR-1 was cultivated on lactate with poised graphite electrode acceptors (E = +0.2 V vs. Ag/AgCl) in order to explore the basis for sustained increases in anodic current output following the addition of the lipid-intercalating conjugated oligoelectrolyte (COE), 4,4'-bis(4'-(N,N-bis(6''-(N,N,N-trimethylammonium)hexyl)amino)-styryl)stilbene tetraiodide (DSSN+). Microbial cultures, which were spiked with DSSN+, exhibit a ?2.2-fold increase in charge collected, a ?3.1-fold increase in electrode colonization by S. oneidensis, and a ?1.7-fold increase in coulombic efficiency from 51 ± 10% to an exceptional 84 ± 7% without obvious toxicity effects. Direct microbial biofilm voltammetry reveals that DSSN+ rapidly and sustainably increases cytochrome-based direct electron transfer and subsequently increases flavin-based mediated electron transfer. Control experiments indicate that DSSN+ does not contribute to the current in the absence of bacteria.
Many potentially useful intermediates such as hydrogen and volatile fatty acids (VFAs) are formed during the complex anaerobic digestion processes that produce methane from biomass. This study recovers VFAs from an anaerobic digester by a combination of gas stripping and absorption with calcium carbonate slurry. Glucose was used as the model substrate because it is readily available, inexpensive and easily digested. Sludge from a meat works anaerobic digester produced methane and carbon dioxide (and sometimes a small amount of hydrogen) when batch-fed with glucose. Conditioning the neutral anaerobic sludge to an acidic pH (below 4.8) was achieved using repeated 1-g L(-1) doses of glucose. After conditioning, mainly VFAs and hydrogen were produced. The intermediate VFAs could be stripped using headspace gas. In subsequent fed-batch digestion/stripping cycles, the pH decreased when glucose was added and then rose when the VFA was gas stripped. The predominant acids formed at low pH values were lactic, butyric and acetic acids. Lactic acid was converted to VFAs during stripping. The VFA calcium salts recovered were 80% butyrate, and 20% acetate with minor quantities of propionate and valerate. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Interleukin-27 (IL-27) has been reported to reduce the levels of interleukin-17 (IL-17) and alleviate the severity of experimental autoimmune myocarditis. IL-17, an important tissue-protective cytokine in viral myocarditis (VMC), has been reported to increase synovial expression of IL-27 in rheumatoid arthritis. However, the influence of IL-17 on IL-27 expression in murine model of VMC remains unknown.
Ten sulphur volatiles were observed in two Florida tomato cultivars ('Tasti-Lee' and 'FL 47') harvested at three maturity stages (breaker, turning, and pink) using gas chromatography with a pulsed flame photometric detector (GC-PFPD). Eight PFPD peaks were identified using retention values from authentic sulphur standards and GC-MS characteristic masses. Seven were quantified using an internal standard combined with external calibration curves. Dimethyl sulphide, dimethyl disulphide, dimethyl trisulphide 2-propylthiazole and 2-s-butylthiazole were newly identified in fresh tomatoes. Principal component analysis of sulphur volatiles indicated that there were appreciable maturity stage differences clustered in separate quadrants. GC-olfactometry (GC-O) identified 50 aroma-active compounds in 'Tasti-Lee', with 10 reported as odorants in fresh tomatoes for the first time. Four sulphur volatiles exhibited aroma activity, including two of the newly-reported fresh tomato sulphur volatiles, 2-s-butylthiazole and dimethyl sulphide. GC-O aroma profiling indicated that the most intense aroma category was earthy-musty, followed by fruity-floral, green-grassy, sweet-candy and sweaty-stale-sulphurous.
Proteasomes are attractive emerging targets for anti-cancer therapies. Auranofin (Aur), a gold-containing compound clinically used to treat rheumatic arthritis, was recently approved by US Food and Drug Administration for Phase II clinical trial to treat cancer but its anti-cancer mechanism is poorly understood. Here we report that (i) Aur shows proteasome-inhibitory effect that is comparable to that of bortezomib/Velcade (Vel); (ii) different from bortezomib, Aur inhibits proteasome-associated deubiquitinases (DUBs) UCHL5 and USP14 rather than the 20S proteasome; (iii) inhibition of the proteasome-associated DUBs is required for Aur-induced cytotoxicity; and (iv) Aur selectively inhibits tumor growth in vivo and induces cytotoxicity in cancer cells from acute myeloid leukemia patients. This study provides important novel insight into understanding the proteasome-inhibiting property of metal-containing compounds. Although several DUB inhibitors were reported, this study uncovers the first drug already used in clinic that can inhibit proteasome-associated DUBs with promising anti-tumor effects.
How botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) cross the host intestinal epithelial barrier in foodborne botulism is poorly understood. Here, we present the crystal structure of a clostridial hemagglutinin (HA) complex of serotype BoNT/A bound to the cell adhesion protein E-cadherin at 2.4 angstroms. The HA complex recognizes E-cadherin with high specificity involving extensive intermolecular interactions and also binds to carbohydrates on the cell surface. Binding of the HA complex sequesters E-cadherin in the monomeric state, compromising the E-cadherin-mediated intercellular barrier and facilitating paracellular absorption of BoNT/A. We reconstituted the complete 14-subunit BoNT/A complex using recombinantly produced components and demonstrated that abolishing either E-cadherin- or carbohydrate-binding of the HA complex drastically reduces oral toxicity of BoNT/A complex in vivo. Together, these studies establish the molecular mechanism of how HAs contribute to the oral toxicity of BoNT/A.
A stilbene-based membrane spanning conjugated oligoelectrolyte 4,4'-bis(4'-N,N-bis(6?-(N,N,N-trimethyl ammonium) hexyl) amino)-styryl) stilbene tetraiodide (DSSN+) has been reported to be able to interact with bacterial cells and enhance their bioelectricity generation in bioelectrochemical devices, although the mechanism remains elusive. The goal of this study was to elucidate the impacts of DSSN+ on extracellular bioactivity and the underlying mechanism. Specifically, extracellular ferrihydrite reduction by Shewanella oneidensis was used to evaluate the influence of cell-DSSN+ interaction. Our results show that DSSN+ enhanced ferrihydrite reduction by S. oneidensis in a growth-dependent manner. The incorporation of DSSN+ into S. oneidensis cell membrane increased the extracellular concentration of redox shuttles, i.e., flavins, and extracellular enzyme activities without significantly decreasing cell viability. The findings suggested that membrane permeabilization is the dominant mechanism for the enhancement of extracellular bioactivity in S. oneidensis by DSSN+. We further demonstrated that the interaction between DSSN+ and S. oneidensis cells enhanced biofilm formation and stability without compromising the overall biofilm activity. Taken together, our results suggest that membrane spanning conjugated oligoelectrolytes, of which DSSN+ is one of many possible molecular structures, may be applied to enhance extracellular bioactivity in bacteria toward more efficient biofilm-based biocatalysis.
In this report, we investigated the molecular mechanism underlying Leber's hereditary optic neuropathy (LHON)-associated mitochondrial m.3635G>A (p.S110N, ND1) mutation. A mutational screening of ND1 gene in a cohort of 1070 Han Chinese subjects LHON identified the m.3635G>A mutation in nine Chinese families with suggestively maternally transmitted LHON. Thirty-eight (22 males/16 females) of 162 matrilineal relatives in these families exhibited the variable severity and age-at-onset of optic neuropathy. Molecular analysis of their mitochondrial genomes identified the homoplasmic m.3635G>A mutation and distinct sets of polymorphisms belonging to the Asian haplogroups G2a1, R11a, D4, R11a, M7b2, G1a, F1a1, B4, and N9a3, respectively. Using cybrids constructed by transferring mitochondria from lymphoblastoid cell lines derived from one Chinese family into mtDNA-less (?(0)) cells, we showed ~27% decrease in the activity of NADH:ubiquinone oxidoreductase (complex I) in mutant cybrids carrying the m.3635G>A mutation, compared with control cybrids. The respiratory deficiency caused by the m.3635G>A mutation results in decreased efficiency of mitochondrial ATP synthesis. These mitochondrial dysfunctions caused an increase in the production of reactive oxygen species in the mutant cybrids. The data provide the direct evidence for the m.3635G>A mutation leading to LHON. Our findings may provide new insights into the understanding of pathophysiology of LHON.
The successful development of bortezomib-based therapy for treatment of multiple myeloma has established proteasome inhibition as an effective therapeutic strategy, and both 20S proteasome peptidases and 19S deubiquitinases (DUBs) are becoming attractive targets of cancer therapy. It has been reported that metal complexes, such as copper complexes, inhibit tumor proteasome. However, the involved mechanism of action has not been fully characterized. Here we report that (i) copper pyrithione (CuPT), an alternative to tributyltin for antifouling paint biocides, inhibits the ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) via targeting both 19S proteasome-specific DUBs and 20S proteolytic peptidases with a mechanism distinct from that of the FDA-approved proteasome inhibitor bortezomib; (ii) CuPT potently inhibits proteasome-specific UCHL5 and USP14 activities; (iii) CuPT inhibits tumor growth in vivo and induces cytotoxicity in vitro and ex vivo. This study uncovers a novel class of dual inhibitors of DUBs and proteasome and suggests a potential clinical strategy for cancer therapy.
Aroma active volatiles in four southern highbush blueberry cultivars ('Prima Dona', 'Jewel', 'Snow Chaser', and 'Kestrel') were determined using solid phase microextraction (SPME) in combination with gas chromatography-olfactometry (GC-O) and identified via GC-PFPD and GC-MS using retention indices of reference compounds and mass spectral data. The aromas of total, unseparated SPME extracts evaluated using GC-O were rated 8.2-9.0/10 for the four cultivars in terms of similarity to the original blueberry homogenates. In terms of GC-O aroma similarity, those aroma active volatile groups characterized as green, fruity, and floral were most intense. Of the 43 volatiles found to have aroma activity, 38 were identified and 13 had not been previously reported in blueberries. Although linalool and (E)-2-hexenal were common major aroma impact volatiles, dominant aroma-active volatiles were different for each cultivar. Principal component analysis confirmed that each cultivar possessed a unique aroma active profile as each cultivar was clustered into a separate score plot quadrant.
Novel poly(anhydride-ester)-b-poly(ethylene glycol) copolymers (PAE-b-PEGs) were synthesized by esterization of methyl poly(ethylene glycol) and poly(anhydride-ester), which were obtained by the melt polycondensation of alpha,omega-acetic anhydride-terminated poly(L-lactic acid), and characterized by 1H-NMR and gel permeation chromatography. The two poly(anhydride-ester)-b-poly(ethylene glycols) (denoted as PAE-b-PEG2k and PAE-b-PEG5k) thus obtained can self-assemble in water to form micelles with hydrodynamic diameters of 92.5 and 97.5 nm above their critical micelle concentrations of 3.78 and 2.36 microg/mL, respectively. The curcumin-loaded PAE-b-PEG2k and PAE-b-PEG5k micelles were prepared by the solid dispersion method, and they could encapsulate approximately 7% (w/w) curcumin. The diameters of the micelles were stable for 5 days. Curcumin is released faster from the micelles at pH 5.0 than at pH 7.4. Curcumin is released from the micelles at a fast rate during the initial 12 h, followed by a zero-order release during the subsequent 200 h, both at pH 5.0 and 7.4. The IC50 values of the curcumin-loaded PAE-b-PEG2k and PAE-b-PEG5k micelles against HeLa cells are 12.41 and 15.31 microg/mL, respectively, which is lower than that of free curcumin (25.90 microg/mL). The PAE-b-PEG2k micelles are taken up faster than the PAE-b-PEG5k micelles by HeLa cells. Curcumin-loaded micelles can induce G2/M phase cell cycle arrest and apoptosis of HeLa cells.
Clostridium straminisolvens (CSK1) is a novel cellulolytic bacterium isolated from a cellulose-degrading bacterial community MC1. In this study, the influence of the following cell disruption and elution methods on CSK1cellulase release was investigated: (1) freezing-thawing, (2) ultrasonication, (3) elution, (4) freezing-thawing following elution, (5) ultrasonication following elution, and lastly (6) high-pressure homogenization following elution. The activity of the cellulases CMCase, ?-glucosidase, Avicelase, FPase, and xylanase in crude extracts increased 81.5, 23.8, 87.7, 46.3, and 51.7 %, respectively, with an observed optimal treatment method for each cellulase type. The release of protein from CSK1 cells increased following either cell disruption or elution and was highest at 88.3 % in the homogenization high pressure following elution treatment. A newly observed protein was present following cell elution. The performance of cell elution as determined by real time-PCR indicated that the first time cell elution removed more than 90 % of the CSK1 cells from the substrate. These findings demonstrate that cell disruption and elution are effective methods for inducing cellulase release, and elution is the key step for CSK1. To our knowledge, this study presents the first evidence of optimal treatments for induction of cellulase release of Clostridium straminisolvens. This information will be of great value for use in subsequent efforts to better understand the cellulase characteristics of CSK1 and cellulose degradation mechanisms of the MC1 community.
Recently, the newly determined interleukin (IL)?22?producing T-helper (Th) 22 cell has been implicated to be involved in the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases. However, its role in the pathogenesis of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) has yet to be elucidated. A total of 30 patients with DCM and 30 healthy controls were enrolled in the present study. The levels of Th22, Th17 and Th1 cells in the peripheral blood were analyzed by flow cytometry. Levels of plasma IL?22 and autoantibody adenine nucleotide translocator (ANT) were assessed using the ELISA. The key transcription factor of Th22, aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR), was assessed using quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Additionally, clinical data on the brain natriuretic peptide (BNP), C?reactive protein (CRP) and erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) were collected. In comparison with those in the control group, significantly elevated levels of Th22, Th17 and Th1 cells were detected in patients with DCM (all P<0.01). Similarly, elevated mRNA levels of peripheral AHR were detected in patients with DCM. The percentage of Th22 cells was higher in ANT?positive compared with ANT?negative patients with DCM. The levels of BNP and CRP, but not ESR, showed a significant positive correlation with those of Th22 cells. With regard to the concentrations of plasma IL?22, no statistical difference was found between patients with DCM and the healthy controls, nor did it demonstrate a statistical correlation with the percentage of Th22 cells. In conclusion, the present study showed that patients with DCM, particularly those of the ANT autoantibody positive subjects, exhibit elevated levels of peripheral Th22 cells, indicating that a Th22 immune response may be implicated in the pathogenesis of DCM.
Artemisinin (ART) and its analogues, such as dihydroartesunate (DHA) and artesunate (ATS), are sesquiterpene lactones with anticancer activities. Transferrin (Tf) receptor is frequently overexpressed in cancer cells. In order to improve the delivery and the anticancer activity of ART and its analogues, adducts of Tf with ART, DHA or ATS were fabricated by simply combining ART, DHA or ATS with Tf. Increased antitumor effects of these adducts were observed on human liver hepatocellular carcinoma (HepG2) and lung adenocarcinoma (A549) cells. Meanwhile, only a low level of toxic effect was observed on normal human liver cells (HL-7702). Improved cellular uptake of ATS-Tf adduct compared to ATS alone was confirmed by HPLC analysis. UV-vis, fluorescence spectroscopy and docking study further confirmed the formation of the adducts with relatively high binding constants at neutral pH (7.4×10(4), 4.2×10(5) and 3.4×10(5)M(-1), for ART-Tf, DHA-Tf and ATS-Tf, respectively, at pH 7.4). However, the adducts became less stable with reduced binding constants under an acidic condition (2.6×10(4), 1.9×10(4) and 1.7×10(4)M(-1), for ART-Tf, DHA-Tf and ATS-Tf, respectively, at pH 5.5). A possible mechanism of the anticancer effect by these adducts was proposed. The short term and long term stability of ART-Tf in the presence of human serum albumin (HSA) was also studied. Our results showed that adducts of ART and its analogues with Tf, especially ATS-Tf and DHA-Tf, have significant anticancer effects to cancer cells, with minimal side effects on normal cells, therefore, are promising as potential novel anticancer agents.
Anacardic acid (6-pentadecylsalicylic acid, AA), a natural compound isolated from the traditional medicine Amphipterygium adstringens, has been reported to possess antitumor activities. However, its molecular targets have not been thoroughly studied. Here, we report that AA is a potent inducer of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, leading to apoptosis in hepatoma HepG2 and myeloma U266 cells. Induction of ER stress by AA was supported by a dose- and time-dependent increase in expression of the ER signaling downstream molecules, such as GRP78/BiP, phosphorylated eIF2?, ATF4 and CHOP in both HepG2 and U266 cell lines. Blockage of ATF4 expression by siRNA partially inhibited, while knockdown of CHOP expression by siRNA slightly increased AA-induced cell death in these cells. In addition, AA suppressed HepG2 xenograft tumor growth, associated with increased ER stress in vivo. These results suggest that AA induces tumor cell apoptosis associated with ATF4-dependent ER stress.
To evaluate the potential utility of pretreatment of raw biomass with a complex microbial system, we investigated the degradation of rice straw by BMC-9, a lignocellulose decomposition strain obtained from a biogas slurry compost environment. The degradation characteristics and corresponding changes in the bacterial community were assessed. The results showed that rapid degradation occurred from day 0 to day 9, with a peak total biomass bacterium concentration of 3.3 × 10(8) copies/ml on day 1. The pH of the fermentation broth declined initially and then increased, and the mass of rice straw decreased steadily. The highest concentrations of volatile fatty acid contents (0.291 mg/l lactic acid, 0.31 mg/l formic acid, 1.93 mg/l acetic acid, and 0.73 mg/l propionic acid) as well as the highest xylanse activity (1.79 U/ml) and carboxymethyl cellulase activity (0.37 U/ml) occurred on day 9. The greatest diversity among the microbial community also occurred on day 9, with the presence of bacteria belonging to Clostridium sp., Bacillus sp., and Geobacillus sp. Together, our results indicate that BMC-9 has a strong ability to rapidly degrade the lignocelluloses of rice straw under relatively inexpensive conditions, and the optimum fermentation time is 9 days.
Epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is a cellular process essential to the development and maintenance of solid tissues. In cancer, EMT suppresses apoptosis, but the mechanisms remain unclear. EMT selectively attenuated apoptosis signaling via the death receptors DR4 and DR5. Loss of the epithelial cell adhesion protein E-cadherin recapitulated this outcome, whereas homotypic E-cadherin engagement promoted apoptotic signaling via DR4/DR5, but not Fas. Depletion of ?-catenin, which couples E-cadherin to the actin cytoskeleton, or actin polymerization inhibitors similarly attenuated DR4/DR5-induced apoptosis. E-cadherin bound specifically to ligated DR4/DR5, requiring extracellular cadherin domain 1 and calcium. E-cadherin augmented DR4/DR5 clustering and assembly of the death-inducing signaling complex (DISC), increasing caspase-8 activation in high molecular weight cell fractions. Conversely, EMT attenuated DR4/DR5-mediated DISC formation and caspase-8 stimulation. Consistent with these findings, epithelial cancer cell lines expressing higher E-cadherin levels displayed greater sensitivity to DR4/DR5-mediated apoptosis. These results have potential implications for tissue homeostasis as well as cancer therapy.
The role of the histamine H3 receptor (H3R) in cerebral ischaemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury remains unknown. Here we show that H3R expression is upregulated after I/R in two mouse models. H3R antagonists and H3R knockout attenuate I/R injury, which is reversed by an H3R-selective agonist. Interestingly, H1R and H2R antagonists, a histidine decarboxylase (HDC) inhibitor and HDC knockout all fail to compromise the protection by H3R blockade. H3R blockade inhibits mTOR phosphorylation and reinforces autophagy. The neuroprotection by H3R antagonism is reversed by 3-methyladenine and siRNA for Atg7, and is diminished in Atg5?/? mouse embryonic fibroblasts. Furthermore, the peptide Tat-H3R(CT414-436), which blocks CLIC4 binding with H3Rs, or siRNA for CLIC4, further increases I/R-induced autophagy and protects against I/R injury. Therefore, H3R promotes I/R injury while its antagonism protects against ischaemic injury via histamine-independent mechanisms that involve suppressing H3R/CLIC4 binding-activated autophagy, suggesting that H3R inhibition is a therapeutic target for cerebral ischaemia.
N-phosphonium chitosans (NPCSs) with different degrees of substitution (3%, 13% and 21%) were synthesized and evaluated as novel polymeric antibacterial agents. Their antibacterial activities compared with hydroxypropyltrimethyl ammonium chloride chitosan (HACC), parent chitosan and (5-carboxypentyl) triphenylphosphonium bromide (CTPB) were tested against Escherichia coli and two strains of drug-resistance Staphylococcus aureus by minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC), minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) and biofilm prevention assays. The results show that the NPCS with 3% or 13% substitution has lower MIC and MBC values and stronger ability to inhibit biofilm formation of all the three bacteria than HACC, chitosan and CTPB. In addition, the antibacterial activity of NPCSs increases with their substitution decreasing from 21% to 3%. Overall, the antibacterial activity of NPCS with 3% or 13% substitution is better than that of NPCS with 21% substitution, HACC with 22% substitution, chitosan and CTPB. It can be considered that NPCS with appropriate degree of substitution has favorable antibacterial activity and is a potential polymeric antibacterial agent.
Acute coronary syndrome is a serious medical emergency. It occurs when an atherosclerotic plaque ruptures, leading to thrombus formation within a coronary artery. Previous studies have shown that T cells are involved in the initiation and progression of acute coronary syndrome. CD4(+)CD28(null) T lymphocytes increase in atherosclerotic plaque, and voltage-gated potassium channel Kv1.3 blockers can suppress the function of these cells in vitro by preventing exocytosis of their cytoplasmic granules. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of PAP-1, a small molecule voltage-gated potassium channel Kv1.3 blocker, on the development of atherosclerosis (AS) in a rat model and the potential mechanism for this effect. Plasma lipids, interferon?, CRP, CD4(+)CD28(null) T cells, and perforin were increased and unstable atherosclerotic plaques developed in the rat model of AS. Blockade of the Kv1.3 potassium channel via PAP-1 administration decreased perforin levels and prevented plaque formation but had no effect on the other changes seen in this AS model. These findings suggest that the small molecule, voltage-gated potassium channel Kv1.3 blocker PAP-1 can suppress the development of AS in a rat model, most likely by inhibiting the exocytosis of cytoplasmic granules from CD4(+)CD28(null) T cells.
The disease mechanism of Rett syndrome (RTT) is not well understood. Studies in RTT mouse models have suggested a non-cell-autonomous role for astrocytes in RTT pathogenesis. However, it is not clear whether this is also true for human RTT astrocytes. To establish an in vitro human RTT model, we previously generated isogenic induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) lines from several RTT patients carrying different disease-causing mutations. Here, we show that these RTT iPSC lines can be efficiently differentiated into astroglial progenitors and glial fibrillary acidic protein-expressing (GFAP(+)) astrocytes that maintain isogenic status, that mutant RTT astrocytes carrying three different RTT mutations and their conditioned media have adverse effects on the morphology and function of wild-type neurons and that the glial effect on neuronal morphology is independent of the intrinsic neuronal deficit in mutant neurons. Moreover, we show that both insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) and GPE (a peptide containing the first 3 amino acids of IGF-1) are able to partially rescue the neuronal deficits caused by mutant RTT astrocytes. Our findings confirm the critical glial contribution to RTT pathology, reveal potential cellular targets of IGF-1 therapy and further validate patient-specific iPSCs and their derivatives as valuable tools to study RTT disease mechanism.
To better understand the underlying molecular basis of leaf development in maize, a reference map of nuclear proteins in basal region of seedling leaf was established using a combination of 2DE and MALDI-TOF-MS. In total, 441 reproducible protein spots in nuclear proteome of maize leaf basal region were detected with silver staining in a pH range of 3-10, among which 203 spots corresponding to 163 different proteins were identified. As expected, proteins implicated in RNA and protein-associated functions were overrepresented in nuclear proteome. Remarkably, a high percentage (10%) of proteins was identified to be involved in cell division and growth. In addition, comparative nuclear proteomic analysis in leaf basal region of highly heterotic hybrid Mo17/B73 and its parental lines was also performed and 52 of 445 (11.69%) detected protein spots were differentially expressed between the hybrid and its parental lines, among which 16 protein spots displayed nonadditively expressed pattern. These results indicated that hybridization between two parental lines can cause changes in the expression of a variety of nuclear proteins, which may be responsible for the observed leaf size heterosis.
The two-phase anaerobic co-digestion of cassava dregs (CD) with pig manure (PM) was evaluated using four sequencing batch reactors (SBRs) and a continuously stirred tank reactor (CSTR). The effect of seven different PM to CD volatile solid ratios (10:0, 8:2, 6:4, 5:5, 4:6, 2:8 and 0:10) on the acidification phase was investigated. Results indicated the concentrations of soluble chemical oxygen demand, NH4-N and volatile fatty acids increased substantially at seven ratios. Co-acidification of PM and CD performed well. Methanogenic fermentation of the acidification products at seven ratios was steady in CSTR. The highest methane yield and VS removal of 0.352m(3)/kg VSadded and 68.5% were achieved at PM:CD (4:6). The microbial population in CSTR was analyzed using molecular methods. Findings revealed that bacteria such as Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes, archaea such as Methanobacteriales and Methanomicrobiales were advantageous populations. Co-digestion of PM and CD supported higher quantity and diversity of methanogens.
Poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) and/or poly(lactic-acid) (PLA) microspheres are important drug delivery systems. This study investigated eye biocompatibility and safety of PLGA/PLA microspheres through intravitreal injection in rabbits. Normal New Zealand rabbits were randomly selected and received intravitreal administration of different doses (low, medium, or high) of PLGA/PLA microspheres and erythropoietin-loaded PLGA/PLA microspheres. The animals were clinically examined and sacrificed at 1, 2, 4, 8, and 12 weeks postadministration, and retinal tissues were prepared for analysis. Retinal reactions to the microspheres were evaluated by terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end staining and glial fibrillary acidic protein immunohistochemistry. Retinal structure changes were assessed by hematoxylin and eosin staining and transmission electron microscopy. Finally, retinal function influences were explored by the electroretinography test. Terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end staining revealed no apoptotic cells in the injected retinas; immunohistochemistry did not detect any increased glial fibrillary acidic protein expression. Hematoxylin and eosin staining and transmission electron microscopy revealed no micro- or ultrastructure changes in the retinas at different time points postintravitreal injection. The electroretinography test showed no significant influence of scotopic or photopic amplitudes. The results demonstrated that PLGA/PLA microspheres did not cause retinal histological changes or functional damage and were biocompatible and safe enough for intravitreal injection in rabbits for controlled drug delivery.
Individual metabolites have been implicated in abscisic acid (ABA) signaling in guard cells, but a metabolite profile of this specialized cell type is lacking. We used liquid chromatography-multiple reaction monitoring mass spectrometry for targeted analysis of 85 signaling-related metabolites in Arabidopsis thaliana guard cell protoplasts over a time course of ABA treatment. The analysis utilized ?350 million guard cell protoplasts from ?30,000 plants of the Arabidopsis Columbia accession (Col) wild type and the heterotrimeric G-protein ? subunit mutant, gpa1, which has ABA-hyposensitive stomata. These metabolomes revealed coordinated regulation of signaling metabolites in unrelated biochemical pathways. Metabolites clustered into different temporal modules in Col versus gpa1, with fewer metabolites showing ABA-altered profiles in gpa1. Ca(2+)-mobilizing agents sphingosine-1-phosphate and cyclic adenosine diphosphate ribose exhibited weaker ABA-stimulated increases in gpa1. Hormone metabolites were responsive to ABA, with generally greater responsiveness in Col than in gpa1. Most hormones also showed different ABA responses in guard cell versus mesophyll cell metabolomes. These findings suggest that ABA functions upstream to regulate other hormones, and are also consistent with G proteins modulating multiple hormonal signaling pathways. In particular, indole-3-acetic acid levels declined after ABA treatment in Col but not gpa1 guard cells. Consistent with this observation, the auxin antagonist ?-(phenyl ethyl-2-one)-indole-3-acetic acid enhanced ABA-regulated stomatal movement and restored partial ABA sensitivity to gpa1.
Abstract Two novel polymer-drug conjugates norcantharidin-poly(vinyl alcohol) and norcantharidin-chitosan (NCTD-PVA and NCTD-CS) were synthesized via alcoholysis reaction and characterized by (1)H-NMR and FTIR. NCTD was released from the conjugates via hydrolysis, faster in PBS (pH 5.0) than that in PBS (pH 7.4). NCTD-PVA and NCTD-CS inhibited human esophageal carcinoma ECA-109 cell and murine breast cancer EMT6 cell growth in a dose-dependent manner. The IC50 values of NCTD, NCTD-PVA and NCTD-CS on ECA-109 cell at 48?h were 9.4?±?0.9, 55.3?±?3.0 and 168.8?±?8.9??g/ml, respectively, and the IC50 values of the three compounds on EMT6 cell were 3.1?±?0.3, 30.5?±?5.4 and 90.7?±?8.1??g/ml, respectively. The two conjugates both induced esophageal carcinoma ECA-109 cell apoptosis and arrested cell cycle at the S phase. Caspase-8 and caspase-3 were activated in the ECA-109 cell after incubating with NCTD-PVA or NCTD-CS. The primary in vivo antitumor activity was assessed in the EMT6 tumor-bearing mouse model. NCTD-PVA and NCTD-CS displayed higher tumor inhibition rates than that of free NCTD.
The use of biological pretreatment in anaerobic digestion systems has some potential; however, to date, these methods have not been able to effectively increase methane production of lignocellulose of municipal solid waste (LMSW). In this study a thermophilic microbial consortium (MC1) was used as a pretreatment method in order to enhance biogas and methane production yields. The results indicated that sCOD concentration increased significantly in the early stages of pretreatment. Ethanol, acetic acid, propionic acid, and butyric acid were the predominant volatile organic products in the MC1 hydrolysate. Biogas and methane production yields of LMSW significantly increased following MC1 pretreatment. In addition, the methane production rate of the treated LMSW was greater than that observed from the untreated sample.
The proteasome inhibitor-based combinational therapy has been reported to be an efficient cancer treatment. Our recent studies demonstrated that the natural compound gambogic acid (GA) is a tissue-specific proteasome inhibitor, comparable to bortezomib (Bor), and sensitizes malignant cells to the proteasome inhibitor MG132/MG262 both in vitro and in vivo. The aim of this study was to further extend our investigation by combining GA with the clinically used proteasome inhibitor Bor to test their combined efficacy against human hepatoma HepG2 and mouse hepatoma H22 cells. GA and Bor synergistically induced cytotoxicity and cell death in human HepG2 and mouse H22 cells, and accelerated proteasome inhibition, endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and caspase activation in HepG2 cancer cells. However, unexpectedly, GA did not enhance or even antagonized Bor-induced tumor growth inhibition in H22 allograft and HepG2 xenograft tumor models. These findings demonstrated that GA increased Bor activity in vitro but limited the efficacy of Bor in vivo. We suggest that the combination of GA and Bor be avoided when administering these drugs to patients.
The study aimed to examine (a) the association between weekly strength exercise frequency and grade point average (GPA), and (b) the demographic characteristics of weekly strength exercise frequency among undergraduate students at a large southern state university in the United States. Health behavior data (N = 1125) collected by the American College Health Association at the university in 2008 were analyzed. Analysis of variance was used to investigate weekly strength exercise frequency differences in GPA, sex, ethnicity, and year in university. The results revealed that those who more frequently engaged in strength exercise had significantly higher GPA. There was a significant difference in weekly strength exercise frequency by sex and ethnicity. Findings suggest that regular engagement in strength exercise may not only have physical health benefits but is also associated with academic achievement in high education. There is a need to further investigate the mechanism of strength exercise on GPA among university students.
Variation in conjugated oligoelectrolyte (COE) repeat units is shown to affect the rate of COE insertion into mammalian membrane patches and membrane patch stabilities. These findings suggest that it is possible to find COE structures that do not destroy membranes while at the same time allow for more facile transmembrane movement of ions/substrates.
To investigate the changes in orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) functional connectivity and its association with decision-making deficits in chronic heroin-dependent individuals (HDIs) and explore the neural mechanisms of heroin addiction and relapse.
Norcantharidin-conjugated chitosan conjugates (NCTD-CSs) with different degrees of substitution (DS, 60.2% and 97.9%) were synthesized and characterized by (1)H NMR, FT-IR, and XRD. In comparison with CS, the NCTD-CSs had lower crystallinity and better water solubility. Less than 6% NCTD was released from the NCTD-CSs through the hydrolysis of ester bonds in phosphate-buffered solution (PBS, pH 5.0 and 7.4) within 16 days, showing sustained drug release characteristic. The result of cytoxicity study showed that the NCTD-CSs were cytotoxic to MGC80-3 cells and their cytotoxicity was lower than that of NCTD. Fluorescence microscope and flow cytometry analysis demonstrated that the amount of the NCTD-CSs uptaken by MGC80-3 cells increased as incubation time. Confocal microscopy study showed that the NCTD-CSs were internalized into cells by endocytosis and mainly localized in lysosomes within 24h. It was found that the NCTD-CSs arrested MGC80-3 cell cycle at G2/M phase and induced cell death via cell apoptosis similarly to NCTD. These results indicated that the NCTD-CSs might be an efficient NCTD delivery system for cancer therapy.
Verapamil (Ver), an inhibitor of the multidrug resistance gene product, has been proved to be a promising combination partner with other anti-cancer agents including proteasome inhibitor bortezomib. Gambogic acid (GA) has been approved for Phase II clinical trials in cancer therapy in China. We have most recently reported that GA is a potent proteasome inhibitor, with anticancer efficiency comparable to bortezomib but much less toxicity. In the current study we investigated whether Ver can enhance the cytotoxicity of GA. We report that (i) the combination of Ver and GA results in synergistic cytotoxic effect and cell death induction in HepG2 and K562 cancer cell lines; (ii) a combinational treatment with Ver and GA induces caspase activation, endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production; (iii) caspase inhibitor z-VAD blocks GA+Ver-induced apoptosis but not proteasome inhibition; (iv) cysteine-containing compound N-acetylcysteine (NAC) prevents GA+Ver-induced poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase cleavage and proteasome inhibition. These results demonstrate that Ver accelerates GA-induced cytotoxicity via enhancing proteasome inhibition and ROS production. These findings indicate that the natural product GA is a valuable candidate that can be used in combination with Ver, thus representing a compelling anticancer strategy.
Under stress conditions transcription factors, including their coactivators, play major roles in mitochondrial biogenesis and oxidative phosphorylation. MED1 (Mediator complex subunit 1) functions as a coactivator of several transcription factors and is implicated in adipogenesis of the lipid and glucose metabolism. This suggests that MED1 may play a role in mitochondrial function. In this study, we found that both the mtDNA content and mitochondrial mass were markedly increased and cell proliferation markedly suppressed in MED1-deficient cells. Upon MED1 loss, Nrf1 and its downstream target genes involved in mitochondrial biogenesis (Tfam, Plormt, Tfb1m), were up-regulated as were those genes in the OXPHOS pathway. Moreover, the knockdown of MED1 resulted in significant changes in the profile of mitochondrial respiration, accompanied by a prominent decrease in the generation of ATP. Collectively, these observations strongly suggest that MED1 has an important affect on mitochondrial function. This further elucidates the role of MED1, particularly its role in the energy metabolism.
Cerebral ischemia-reperfusion (I-R) is a complex pathological process. Although autophagy can be evoked by ischemia, its involvement in the reperfusion phase after ischemia and its contribution to the fate of neurons remains largely unknown. In the present investigation, we found that autophagy was activated in the reperfusion phase, as revealed in both mice with middle cerebral artery occlusion and oxygen-glucose deprived cortical neurons in culture. Interestingly, in contrast to that in permanent ischemia, inhibition of autophagy (by 3-methyladenine, bafilomycin A 1, Atg7 knockdown or in atg5(-/-) MEF cells) in the reperfusion phase reinforced, rather than reduced, the brain and cell injury induced by I-R. Inhibition of autophagy either with 3-methyladenine or Atg7 knockdown enhanced the I-R-induced release of cytochrome c and the downstream activation of apoptosis. Moreover, MitoTracker Red-labeled neuronal mitochondria increasingly overlapped with GFP-LC3-labeled autophagosomes during reperfusion, suggesting the presence of mitophagy. The mitochondrial clearance in I-R was reversed by 3-methyladenine and Atg7 silencing, further suggesting that mitophagy underlies the neuroprotection by autophagy. In support, administration of the mitophagy inhibitor mdivi-1 in the reperfusion phase aggravated the ischemia-induced neuronal injury both in vivo and in vitro. PARK2 translocated to mitochondria during reperfusion and Park2 knockdown aggravated ischemia-induced neuronal cell death. In conclusion, the results indicated that autophagy plays different roles in cerebral ischemia and subsequent reperfusion. The protective role of autophagy during reperfusion may be attributable to mitophagy-related mitochondrial clearance and inhibition of downstream apoptosis. PARK2 may be involved in the mitophagy process.
Estrogen-related receptor ? is a potential candidate target for therapeutic treatment of breast cancer. We describe the discovery and structure-activity relationship study of a series of 1-phenyl-4-benzoyl-1H-1,2,3-triazoles as novel suppressors of ERR? transcriptional functions. The most promising compound, 2-aminophenyl-(1-(3-isopropylphenyl)-1H-1,2,3-triazol-4-yl)methanone (14n), potently suppressed the transcriptional functions of ERR? with IC50 = 0.021 ?M in a cell-based reporter gene assay and also decreased both the mRNA levels and the protein levels of ERR? and the downstream targets. This compound inhibited the proliferation and migration of breast cancer cells with high level of ERR?. Preliminary pharmacokinetic studies suggested that it possessed a good pharmacokinetic profile with an oral bioavailability of 71.8%. The compounds may serve as novel small molecule probes for further validation of ERR? as a molecular target for anticancer drug development.
The aim of this study was to explore the effect of a traditional Chinese medicine (Xiaochaihu Tang, XCHT) on the expression of matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2) and MMP-9 in rats with endometriosis (EMs). A total of 48 specific-pathogen-free (SPF) female Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats were randomly divided into control (n=8) and EMs (n=40) groups. The EMs model was established using a surgical procedure. At 21 days, the rats with EMs were screened and divided into four subgroups (n=8): the model control, low-dose (7.5 g/kg) XCHT-treated, high-dose (15 g/kg) XCHT-treated and gestrinone-treated (0.5 mg/kg) groups. Following 21 days of treatment, the rats were sacrificed. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and western blotting were used to examine the mRNA and protein levels of MMP-2 and MMP-9 in the endometrium. The expression levels of MMP-2 and MMP-9 were significantly increased in the rats with EMs compared with those in normal rats. Moreover, XCHT was able to significantly inhibit the expression of MMP-2 and MMP-9 compared with that in the model control group. In conclusion, XCHT was able to decrease the expression of MMP-2 and MMP-9 in the ectopic endometrium. The present results may provide a potential theoretical basis for the therapy of EMs.
High tumor targeting and sustained drug concentration are key points for successful anti-tumor therapy, however, it is a challenging task. In this work, a novel micelle formulation of paclitaxel (PTX) has been prepared for the purpose of prolonging the blood circulation time as well as improving the accumulation of the drug within the tumor tissue. PEGylated P(CL-co-LLA) (poly(?-caprolactone-co-L-lactide)) micelles containing PTX were prepared by solid dispersion-sonication method with a higher drug-loading efficiency and encapsulation ratio (28.4% and 94.7%, respectively). Pharmacokinetic study revealed that the drug-loading micelles exhibited a higher AUC values and a prolonged residence time of drug in the blood circulation than those of PTX injection. As demonstrated by tissue distribution and anti-tumor study in S180 tumor-bearing mice, the PEG-P(CL-co-LLA)/PTX micelles displayed modified tissue distribution of PTX and increased accumulation of PTX in tumor, therefore, resulted in anti-tumor effects enhancement and drug concentration in the normal tissues reduction. Furthermore, the preliminary safety tests were performed by measuring the body weight, histopathology, blood cell counts and clinical chemistry parameters, and the results showed no subacute toxicity to hematological system, major organs or tissues in mice. Taken together, our valuation shows that PEG-P(CL-co-LLA) micelles is a potential drug delivery system of PTX for the effective treatment of the tumor and systematic toxicity reduction, thus, the micellar formulation can provide a useful alternative dosage form for i.v. administration of PTX.
Accumulating evidence from brain structural imaging studies on heroin dependence has supported links between brain morphological alterations and heroin exposure, particularly in gray matter volume or gray matter density. However, the effects of heroin exposure on cortical thickness and the relationship between cortical thickness and heroin addiction are not yet known. In this study, we acquired 3D high-resolution brain structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) data from 18 heroin-dependent individuals (HDIs) and 15 healthy controls (HCs). Using FreeSurfer, we detected abnormalities in cortical thickness in the HDIs. Based on a vertex-wise analysis, the HDIs showed significantly decreased cortical thickness in the bilateral superior frontal, left caudal middle frontal, right superior temporal, and right insular regions compared to the HCs but significantly increased cortical thickness in the left superior parietal, bilateral lingual, left temporal pole, right inferior parietal, right lateral occipital, and right cuneus regions. To supplement these results, a subsequent ROI-wise analysis was performed and showed decreased cortical thickness in the left superior frontal sulcus, left precuneus gyrus, left calcarine sulcus, left anterior transverse collateral sulcus, and the right medial occipital-temporal and lingual sulcus. These regions partially overlapped with the areas identified using the vertex-wise analysis. In addition, we found that the thickness in the right superior frontal and right insular regions was negatively correlated with the duration of heroin use. These results provide compelling evidence for cortical abnormality in HDIs and also suggest that the duration of heroin use may be a critical factor associated with the brain alteration.
A novel 4-arm poly(ethylene glycol)-block-poly(anhydride-esters) amphiphilic copolymer (4-arm PEG-b-PAE) was synthesized by esterization of 4-arm poly(ethylene glycol) and poly(anhydride-esters) which was obtained by melt polycondensation of ? -, ? -acetic anhydride terminated poly(L-lactic acid). The obtained 4-arm PEG-b-PAE was characterized by (1)H-NMR and gel permeation chromatography. The critical micelle concentration of 4-arm PEG-b-PAE was 2.38 ?g/mL. The curcumin-loaded 4-arm PEG-b-PAE micelles were prepared by a solid dispersion method and the drug loading content and encapsulation efficiency of the micelles were 7.0% and 85.2%, respectively. The curcumin-loaded micelles were spherical with a hydrodynamic diameter of 151.9 nm. Curcumin was encapsulated within 4-arm PEG-b-PAE micelles amorphously and released from the micelles, faster in pH 5.0 than pH 7.4, presenting one biphasic drug release pattern with rapid release at the initial stage and slow release later. The hemolysis rate of the curcumin-loaded 4-arm PEG-b-PAE micelles was 3.18%, which was below 5%. The IC50 value of the curcumin-loaded micelles against Hela cells was 10.21 ?g/mL, lower than the one of free curcumin (25.90 ?g/mL). The cellular uptake of the curcumin-loaded micelles in Hela cell increased in a time-dependent manner. The curcumin-loaded micelles could induce G2/M phase cell cycle arrest and apoptosis of Hela cells.
Bovine serum albumin (BSA) was added to filter paper during the hydrolysis of cellulase. Adding BSA before the addition of the cellulase enhances enzyme activity in the solution, thereby increasing the conversion rate of cellulose. After 48 h of BSA treatment, the BSA adsorption quantities are 3.3, 4.6, 7.8, 17.2, and 28.3 mg/g substrate, each with different initial BSA concentration treatments at 50 °C; in addition, more cellulase was adsorbed onto the filter paper at 50 °C compared with 35 °C. After 48 h of hydrolysis, the free-enzyme activity could not be measured without the BSA treatment, whereas the remaining activity of the filter paper activity was approximately 41 % when treated with 1.0 mg/mL BSA. Even after 96 h of hydrolysis, 25 % still remained. Meanwhile, after 48 h of incubation without substrate, the remaining enzyme activities were increased 20.7 % (from 43.7 to 52.7 %) and 94.8 % (from 23.3 to 45.5 %) at 35 and 50 °C, respectively. Moreover, the effect of the BSA was more obvious at 35 °C compared with 50 °C. When using 15 filter paper cellulase units per gram substrate cellulase loading at 50 °C, the cellulose conversion was increased from 75 % (without BSA treatment) to ?90 % when using BSA dosages between 0.1 and 1.5 mg/mL. Overall, these results suggest that there are promising strategies for BSA treatment in the reduction of enzyme requirements during the hydrolysis of cellulose.
New norcantharidin-conjugated hydroxypropyltrimethyl ammonium chloride chitosan derivatives (NCTD-HACCs) were synthesized and characterized by (1)H NMR, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR), and wide-angle X-ray diffraction (WAXD). Two NCTD-HACCs with different degrees of substitution (DS) (12.2% and 24.8%) were obtained, which had good water solubility. NCTD was released from the NCTD-HACCs via hydrolysis, faster in pH 5.0 than pH 7.4 and presenting one biphasic drug release pattern with rapid release at the initial stage and slow release later. Fluorescence microscope and flow cytometry analysis demonstrated that the NCTD-HACC was endocytosized into MGC80-3 cells and the uptaken amount increased as incubation time. Compared with free NCTD, the NCTD-HACCs showed lower in vitro anti-tumor activity against human gastric cancer MGC80-3 cells, but higher in vivo tumor growth inhibition in S180 tumor-bearing mice. The in vivo near-infrared (NIR) fluorescence real-time imaging result showed the fluorescence intensity in tumor was much higher than that in heart, liver, spleen and lung (except kidney) after i.v. injection of the FITC-labeled NCTD-HACC2, indicating specific accumulation of the NCTD-HACC in tumor.
It is important to tailor biotic-abiotic interfaces in order to maximize the utility of bioelectronic devices such as microbial fuel cells (MFCs), electrochemical sensors and bioelectrosynthetic systems. The efficiency of electron-equivalent extraction (or injection) across such biotic-abiotic interfaces is dependent on the choice of the microbe and the conductive electrode material. In this contribution, we show that spontaneous intercalation of a conjugated oligoelectrolyte, namely 4,4-bis(4-(N,N-bis(6-(N,N,N-trimethylammonium)hexyl)amino)-styryl)stilbene tetraiodide (DSSN+), into the membranes of Escherichia coli leads to an increase in current generation in MFCs containing carbon-based electrodes. A combination of scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and confocal microscopy was employed to confirm the incorporation of DSSN+ into the cell membrane and biofilm formation atop carbon felt electrodes. Current collection was enhanced by more than 300% with addition of this conjugated oligoelectrolyte. The effect of DSSN+ concentration on electrical output was also investigated. Higher concentrations, up to 25 ?M, lead to an overall increase in the number of charge equivalents transferred to the charge-collecting electrode, providing evidence in support of the central role of the synthetic system in improving device performance.
In this study, N-phosphonium chitosans (NPCSs) with two degrees of substitution were synthesized in a homogeneous system as nonviral gene vectors. Grafted polymer/DNA complexes at various charge ratios were formulated and characterized. Particle sizes of NPCS/DNA complexes were between 110 and 160 nm as determined by dynamic light scattering. Accordingly, scanning electron microscopy photo of NPCS/DNA complexes exhibited a compact morphology. Zeta potentials of these complexes changed as the charge ratio and pH varied. The cytotoxicity assay showed that NPCS polymers were less toxic than branched PEI-25K. Furthermore, gene transfection efficiencies of NPCS/DNA complexes showed that the gene transfection ability of the grafted polymer was much better than chitosan and NPCS with the degree of substitution of 21.5% had comparative gene transfection efficiency to branched PEI-25K. Together, these results suggest that the low toxic NPCS grafted polymers could be used as effective gene delivery vectors.
Loss-of-function mutations in Na(v)1.5 cause sodium channelopathies, including Brugada syndrome, dilated cardiomyopathy, and sick sinus syndrome; however, no effective therapy exists. MOG1 increases plasma membrane (PM) expression of Na(v)1.5 and sodium current (I(Na)) density, thus we hypothesize that MOG1 can serve as a therapeutic target for sodium channelopathies.
Interleukin (IL)-22 has either proinflammatory or tissue?protective properties, depending on the nature of the affected tissue and the local cytokine milieu, including the presence or absence of IL-17A co-expression. We have previously demonstrated that IL-22 has critical anti-inflammatory and antiviral roles in mice with coxsackievirus B3 (CVB3)?induced acute viral myocarditis (AVMC) in the presence of IL-17A. However, whether IL-17A determines the function of IL-22 in AVMC remains unknown. Therefore, the present study, in continuation of our previous investigations, aimed to determine whether IL-22 plays a distinctly different role in the absence of IL-17A in AVMC by using IL-17A-deficient mice. Results demonstrated that the neutralization of IL-22 in IL-17A?deficient mice alleviated the severity of myocarditis. This was demonstrated by the lower pathological scores of heart sections and ratios of heart weight/body weight (HW/BW), reduced production of activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) and proinflammatory cytokines TNF-? and IL-6, followed by increased viral replication and decreased levels of the antiviral cytokine IFN-?. Furthermore, the correlation between cardiac CVB3 RNA and IL-22 mRNA or IFN-? mRNA was negative. In conclusion, IL-22 exacerbated the severity of AVMC and restrained viral replication in the absence of IL-17A. Spleen lymphocytes cultured with recombinant IL-17 (rIL-17) increased the production of IL-22. Combined with our previous data, these results indicate that IL-17A is not involved in regulating the antiviral role, however, may mediate the tissue-protective versus pathogenic properties of IL-22 in CVB3-induced AVMC in mice.
For the fixed-bed reactors in this experiment, during 40 days of stable operation and under different organic loading shocks, biogas production remained stable at 21 L, effluent pH remained between 6.8 and 7.5, and chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal efficiency and the biogas methane content were greater than 80% and 75%, respectively. The community was analyzed using denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE), 16S rRNA gene clone library screening, and quantitative PCR. Findings revealed that bacteria and methanogenic archaea were typically dominant in the adhering sludge. Methanomicrobiales was identified in carbon fiber carriers, they were breeding slowly, and attached easily. The 16S rRNA gene concentration of methanogenic archaea was higher in the adhering sludge than in the deposited sludge. Our results indicated that the colonization of the microorganism played a very important role in the carbon fiber carriers, as well as in the improvement of sludge activity and the shock resistance of the reactor.
Bcr-Abl(T315I) mutation-induced imatinib resistance remains a major challenge for clinical management of chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML). Herein, we report GZD824 (10a) as a novel orally bioavailable inhibitor against a broad spectrum of Bcr-Abl mutants including T315I. It tightly bound to Bcr-Abl(WT) and Bcr-Abl(T315I) with K(d) values of 0.32 and 0.71 nM, respectively, and strongly inhibited the kinase functions with nanomolar IC(50) values. The compound potently suppressed proliferation of Bcr-Abl-positive K562 and Ku812 human CML cells with IC(50) values of 0.2 and 0.13 nM, respectively. It also displayed good oral bioavailability (48.7%), a reasonable half-life (10.6 h), and promising in vivo antitumor efficacy. It induced tumor regression in mouse xenograft tumor models driven by Bcr-Abl(WT) or the mutants and significantly improved the survival of mice bearing an allograft leukemia model with Ba/F3 cells harboring Bcr-Abl(T315I). GZD824 represents a promising lead candidate for development of Bcr-Abl inhibitors to overcome acquired imatinib resistance.
Soils containing an approximately equal mixture of metastable iron sulfides and pyrite occur in the boreal Ostrobothnian coastal region of Finland, termed potential acid sulfate soil materials. If the iron sulfides are exposed to air, oxidation reactions result in acid and metal release to the environment that can cause severe damage. Despite that acidophilic microorganisms catalyze acid and metal release from sulfide minerals, the microbiology of acid sulfate soil (ASS) materials has been neglected. The molecular phylogeny of a depth profile through the plough and oxidized ASS layers identified several known acidophilic microorganisms and environmental clones previously identified from acid- and metal-contaminated environments. In addition, several of the 16S rRNA gene sequences were more similar to sequences previously identified from cold environments. Leaching of the metastable iron sulfides and pyrite with an ASS microbial enrichment culture incubated at low pH accelerated metal release, suggesting microorganisms capable of catalyzing metal sulfide oxidation were present. The 16S rRNA gene analysis showed the presence of species similar to Acidocella sp. and other clones identified from acid mine environments. These data support that acid and metal release from ASSs was catalyzed by indigenous microorganisms adapted to low pH.
Adolescence is a critical developmental stage during which substantial remodeling occurs in brain areas involved in emotional and learning processes. Although a robust literature on the biological effects of extremely low frequency magnetic fields (ELF-MFs) has been documented, data on the effects of ELF-MF exposure during this period on cognitive functions remain scarce. In this study, early adolescent male mice were exposed from postnatal day (P) 23-35 to a 50?Hz MF at 2?mT for 60?min/day. On P36-45, the potential effects of the MF exposure on spatial memory performance were examined using the Y-maze and Morris water maze tasks. The results showed that the MF exposure did not affect Y-maze performance but improved spatial learning acquisition and memory retention in the water maze task under the present experimental conditions.
In addition to the expression of recombinant proteins, baculoviruses have been developed as a platform for the display of complex eukaryotic proteins on the surface of virus particles or infected insect cells. Surface display has been used extensively for antigen presentation and targeted gene delivery but is also a candidate for the display of protein libraries for molecular screening. However, although baculovirus gene libraries can be efficiently expressed and displayed on the surface of insect cells, target gene selection is inefficient probably due to super-infection which gives rise to cells expressing more than one protein. In this report baculovirus superinfection of Sf9 cells has been investigated by the use of two recombinant multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus carrying green or red fluorescent proteins under the control of both early and late promoters (vAcBacGFP and vAcBacDsRed). The reporter gene expression was detected 8 hours after the infection of vAcBacGFP and cells in early and late phases of infection could be distinguished by the fluorescence intensity of the expressed protein. Simultaneous infection with vAcBacGFP and vAcBacDsRed viruses each at 0.5 MOI resulted in 80% of infected cells co-expressing the two fluorescent proteins at 48 hours post infection (hpi), and subsequent infection with the two viruses resulted in similar co-infection rate. Most Sf9 cells were re-infectable within the first several hours post infection, but the re-infection rate then decreased to a very low level by 16 hpi. Our data demonstrate that Sf9 cells were easily super-infectable during baculovirus infection, and super-infection could occur simultaneously at the time of the primary infection or subsequently during secondary infection by progeny viruses. The efficiency of super-infection may explain the difficulties of baculovirus display library screening but would benefit the production of complex proteins requiring co-expression of multiple polypeptides.
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