The purpose of this study was to develop an auditory emotion recognition function that could determine the emotion caused by sounds coming from the environment in our daily life. For this purpose, sound stimuli from the International Affective Digitized Sounds (IADS-2), a standardized database of sounds intended to evoke emotion, were selected, and four psychoacoustic parameters (i.e., loudness, sharpness, roughness, and fluctuation strength) were extracted from the sounds. Also, by using an emotion adjective scale, 140 college students were tested to measure three basic emotions (happiness, sadness, and negativity). From this discriminant analysis to predict basic emotions from the psychoacoustic parameters of sound, a discriminant function with overall discriminant accuracy of 88.9 % was produced from training data. In order to validate the discriminant function, the same four psychoacoustic parameters were extracted from 46 sound stimuli collected from another database and substituted into the discriminant function. The results showed that an overall discriminant accuracy of 63.04 % was confirmed. Our findings provide the possibility that daily-life sounds, beyond voice and music, can be used in a human-machine interface.
The effects of fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) on collagen tissue regeneration by human bone marrow stem cells (hBMSCs) were investigated. hBMSCs were isolated from human vertebral body bone marrow during vertebral surgery and a population of hBMSCs with the characteristics of mesenchymal stem cells was observed. The FGF-2 treatment (5?ng/mL) affected on the colony-forming efficiency, proliferation, and in vitro differentiation of hBMSCs. Insoluble/soluble collagen and hydroxyproline synthesis was significantly enhanced in hBMSCs expanded with FGF-2 and the treatment of FGF-2 caused a reduction in the mRNA expression of collagen type I, but an increase of collagen types II and III along with lysyl oxidase family genes. Collagen formation was also examined using an in vivo assay model by transplanting hBMSCs into immunocompromised mice (n=4) and the histologic and immunohistochemical results revealed that significantly more collagen with a well-organized structure was formed by FGF-2-treated hBMSCs at 8 weeks posttransplantation (P<0.05). The DNA microarray assay demonstrated that genes related to extracellular matrix formation were significantly upregulated. To elucidate the underlying mechanism, chemical inhibitors against extracellular-signal-regulated kinase (ERK) and phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) were treated and following downstream expression was observed. Collectively, FGF-2 facilitated the collagen-producing potency of hBMSCs both in vitro and in vivo, rendering them more suitable for use in collagen regeneration in the clinical field.
This study aimed to enhance the attachment of periodontal ligament stem cells (PDLSCs) onto decellularized dental root surface using surface coating with fibronectin and/or calcium phosphate (CaP), and to evaluate the activity of PDLSCs attached to a coated dental root surface following tooth replantation. PDLSCs were isolated from five dogs, and the other dental roots were used as a scaffold for carrying PDLSCs, and then assigned to one of four groups according to whether their surface was coated with CaP, fibronectin, or CaP/fibronectin, or left uncoated (control). Fibronectin increased the adhesion of PDLSCs onto dental root surfaces compared to both the control and CaP-coated groups, and simultaneous surface coating with CaP and fibronectin significantly accelerated and increased PDLSC adhesion compared to the fibronectin-only group. On in vivo tooth replantation, functionally oriented periodontal new attachment was observed on the CaP/fibronectin-coated dental roots to which autologous PDLSCs had adhered, while in the control condition dental root replantation was associated only with root resorption and ankylosis along the entire root length. CaP and fibronectin synergistically enhanced the attachment of PDLSCs onto dental root surfaces, and autologous PDLSCs could produce de novo periodontal new attachment in an experimental in vivo model.
Human bone marrow stem cells (hBMSCs) represent a promising regenerative material because of their mutipotency, including their ability to regenerate collagenous soft tissues. We previously found that water-soluble chitin (WSC) enhances the ability of human periodontal ligament stem cells (hPDLSCs) to synthesize collagen tissue. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of WSC on hBMSCs and hPDLSCs for the collagen synthesis both in vitro and in vivo. hBMSCs and hPDLSCs were isolated and expanded with or without 0.3?mg/mL WSC. A series of in vitro and in vivo analyses were performed to evaluate their characteristics as stem cell populations. Then, collagen and hydroxyproline assays were conducted using both in vitro and in vivo assay models, and the real-time polymerase chain reaction was performed to analyze the expression of collagen-related markers. WSC-treated and nontreated hBMSCs and hPDLSCs were transplanted into immunocompromised mice, and histology and immunohistochemistry analyses were conducted after 8 weeks. The in vitro results showed that those cells possessed the characteristics of mesenchymal stem cells. The amount of soluble collagen synthesized was significantly greater in WSC-treated hBMSCs than in the nontreated group; conversely, treatment of hPDLSCs with WSC decreased the formation of soluble collagen. The amount of insoluble collagen synthesized was greater in the WSC-treated groups than in the nontreated groups for both hBMSCs and hPDLSCs. The hydroxyproline contents of the regenerated soluble and insoluble collagens were similar. The expressions of mRNA for collagen types I-V, hyaluronic acid synthase 1 (HAS1), HAS2, and HAS3, and the LOX family were higher in WSC-treated hPDLSCs than in the nontreated group, whereas WSC increased the expression of collagen type III and decreased that of collagen type I in hBMSCs. The histology and immunohistochemistry results revealed that WSC significantly increased the amount of collagen formed in vivo by both types of stem cells. Collectively, treatment with WSC significantly enhanced the collagen-forming potentials of hBMSCs and hPDLSCs, but the collagen they produced exhibited distinctively different characteristics. These findings suggest that the appropriate stem-cell source should be chosen based on the purpose of the required regenerated tissue.
Allelic variations in gene expression influence many biological responses and cause phenotypic variations in humans. In this study, Illumina Human Exome BeadChips containing more than 240,000 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were used to identify changes in allelic gene expression in hepatocellular carcinoma cells following lipopolysaccharide (LPS) stimulation. We found 17 monoallelically expressed genes, 58 allelic imbalanced genes, and 7 genes showing allele substitution. In addition, we also detected 33 differentially expressed genes following LPS treatment in vitro using these human exome SNP chips. However, alterations in allelic gene expression following LPS treatment were detected in only three genes (MLXIPL, TNC, and MX2), which were observed in one cell line sample only, indicating that changes in allelic gene expression following LPS stimulation of liver cells are rare events. Among a total of 75 genes showing allelic expression in hepatocellular carcinoma cells, either monoallelic or imbalanced, 43 genes (57.33%) had expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL) data, indicating that high-density exome SNP chips are useful and reliable for studying allelic gene expression. Furthermore, most genes showing allelic expression were regulated by cis-acting mechanisms and were also significantly associated with several human diseases. Overall, our study provides a better understanding of allele-specific gene expression in hepatocellular carcinoma cells with and without LPS stimulation and potential clues for the cause of human disease due to alterations in allelic gene expression.
Chlorophyll (Chl) degradation causes leaf yellowing during senescence or under stress conditions. For Chl breakdown, STAY-GREEN1 (SGR1) interacts with Chl catabolic enzymes (CCEs) and light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) at the thylakoid membrane, possibly to allow metabolic channeling of potentially phototoxic Chl breakdown intermediates. Among these Chl catabolic components, SGR1 acts as a key regulator of leaf yellowing. In addition to SGR1 (At4g22920), the Arabidopsis thaliana genome contains an additional homolog, SGR2 (At4g11910), whose biological function remains elusive. Under senescence-inducing conditions, SGR2 expression is highly up-regulated, similarly to SGR1 expression. Here we show that SGR2 function counteracts SGR1 activity in leaf Chl degradation; SGR2-overexpressing plants stayed green and the sgr2-1 knockout mutant exhibited early leaf yellowing under age-, dark-, and stress-induced senescence conditions. Like SGR1, SGR2 interacted with LHCII but, in contrast to SGR1, SGR2 interactions with CCEs were very limited. Furthermore, SGR1 and SGR2 formed homo- or heterodimers, strongly suggesting a role for SGR2 in negatively regulating Chl degradation by possibly interfering with the proposed CCE-recruiting function of SGR1. Our data indicate an antagonistic evolution of the functions of SGR1 and SGR2 in Arabidopsis to balance Chl catabolism in chloroplasts with the dismantling and remobilizing of other cellular components in senescing leaf cells.
Adenoviruses (family Adenoviridae) infect various organ systems and cause diseases in a wide range of host species. In this study, we examined multiple tissues from Chinstrap penguins (Pygoscelis antarctica), collected in Antarctica during 2009 and 2010, for the presence of novel adenoviruses by PCR. Analysis of a 855-bp region of the hexon gene of a newly identified adenovirus, designated Chinstrap penguin adenovirus 1 (CSPAdV-1), showed nucleotide (amino acid) sequence identity of 71.8% (65.5%) with South Polar skua 1 (SPSAdV-1), 71% (70%) with raptor adenovirus 1 (RAdV-1), 71.4% (67.6%) with turkey adenovirus 3 (TAdV-3) and 61% (61.6%) with frog adenovirus 1 (FrAdV-1). Based on the genetic and phylogenetic analyses, CSPAdV-1 was classified as a member of the genus, Siadenovirus. Virus isolation attempts from kidney homogenates in the MDTC-RP19 (ATCC® CRL-8135™) cell line were unsuccessful. In conclusion, this study provides the first evidence of new adenovirus species in Antarctic penguins.
Hypertension is the most prevalent cardiovascular disease worldwide, but its genetic basis is poorly understood. Recently, genome-wide association studies identified 33 genetic loci that are associated with blood pressure. However, it has been difficult to determine whether these loci are causative owing to the lack of functional analyses. Of these 33 genome-wide association studies (GWAS) loci, the 4q21 locus, known as the fibroblast growth factor 5 (FGF5) locus, has been linked to blood pressure in Asians and Europeans. Using a mouse model, we aimed to identify a causative gene in the 4q21 locus, in which four genes (anthrax toxin receptor 2 (ANTXR2), PR domain-containing 8 (PRDM8), FGF5 and chromosome 4 open reading frame 22 (C4orf22)) were near the lead single-nucleotide polymorphism (rs16998073). Initially, we examined Fgf5 gene by measuring blood pressure in Fgf5-knockout mice. However, blood pressure did not differ between Fgf5 knockout and wild-type mice. Therefore, the other candidate genes were studied by in vivo small interfering RNA (siRNA) silencing in mice. Antxr2 siRNA was pretreated with polyethylenimine and injected into mouse tail veins, causing a significant decrease in Antxr2 mRNA by 22% in the heart. Moreover, blood pressure measured under anesthesia in Antxr2 siRNA-injected mice rose significantly compared with that of the controls. These results suggest that ANTXR2 is a causative gene in the human 4q21 GWAS-blood pressure locus. Additional functional studies of ANTXR2 in blood pressure may identify a novel genetic pathway, thus increasing our understanding of the etiology of essential hypertension.
The solid pseudopapillary tumor (SPT) of the pancreas is a rare but low-grade malignant tumor with a good prognosis after surgical excision. Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS)-guided fine needle aspiration (FNA) is a minimally invasive, safe and reliable way of diagnosing SPT by providing characteristic cytological and immunochemical specimens. Definitive preoperative diagnosis leads to targeted and minimally invasive surgical resection. In this study, we report three cases of SPTs that were diagnosed through EUS-FNA and underwent successful laparoscopic surgery.
Delta neutrophil index (DNI) has been reported to be useful in the diagnosis of sepsis. We evaluated the role of DNI for differentiating true bacteremia from blood contamination and compared the DNI value with previously validated markers such as procalcitonin (PCT) and C-reactive protein (CRP).
Recent genome-wide association studies (GWASs) have identified 30 genetic loci that regulate blood pressure, increasing our understanding of the cause of hypertension. However, it has been difficult to define the causative genes at these loci due to a lack of functional analyses.
MicroRNAs are small noncoding RNAs thought to have pivotal roles in numerous diseases and developmental processes. However, a growing body of literature indicates that in vivo elimination of these tiny RNAs usually has little to no observable consequence, suggesting functional redundancy with other microRNAs or cellular pathways. We provide an in-depth analysis of miR-205 expression and define miR-205 as an epithelial-specific microRNA, and for the first time show that ablation of this microRNA knockout exhibits partially penetrant lethality in a constitutive mouse knockout model. Given the role of this microRNA in cancer and development, this mouse model will be an incredible reagent to study the function and mechanisms of miR-205 in epithelial tissue development and disease.
In response to a hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome case in November 2000, a seasonal rodent-borne disease surveillance program was initiated at Dagmar North Training Area (DNTA), Gyeonggi Province, Republic of Korea. From April 2001-December 2005, 1,848 small mammals were captured. Apodemus agrarius accounted for 92.5%, followed by Mus musculus (3.6%), Crocidura lasiura (2.1%), and Microtus fortis (1.1%). Three species of rodents were found to be antibody-positive (Ab+) for Hantaan virus (HTNV): A. agrarius (22.3%), M. musculus (9.1%), and M. fortis (5.0%). Ab+ rates for A. agrarius increased with increasing weight (age), except for those weighing <10 g. The peak HTNV transmission period in Korea coincided with the peak reproductive potential of A. agrarius during the fall (August/September) surveys. HTNV strains from DNTA were distinct from HTNV strains from the Peoples Republic of China. From these studies, more accurate risk assessments can be developed to better protect personnel from rodent-borne diseases.
Adenoviruses have been identified in humans and a wide range of vertebrate animals, but not previously from the polar region. Here, we report the entire 26,340-bp genome of a novel adenovirus, detected by PCR, in tissues of six of nine South Polar skuas (Catharacta maccormicki), collected in Lake King Sejong, King George Island, Antarctica, from 2007 to 2009. The DNA polymerase, penton base, hexon and fiber genes of the South Polar skua adenovirus (SPSAdV) exhibited 68.3%, 75.4%, 74.9% and 48.0% nucleotide sequence similarity with their counterparts in turkey hemorrhagic enteritis virus. Phylogenetic analysis based on the entire genome revealed that SPSAdV belonged to the genus Siadenovirus, family Adenoviridae. This is the first evidence of a novel adenovirus, SPSAdV, from a large polar seabird (family Stercorariidae) in Antarctica.
Soluble guanylate cyclase is an NO-sensing hemoprotein that serves as a NO receptor in NO-mediated signaling pathways. It has been believed that this enzyme displays no measurable affinity for O(2), thereby enabling the selective NO sensing in aerobic environments. Despite the physiological significance, the reactivity of the enzyme-heme for O(2) has not been examined in detail. In this paper we demonstrated that the high spin heme of the ferrous enzyme converted to a low spin oxyheme (Fe(2+)-O(2)) when frozen at 77 K in the presence of O(2). The ligation of O(2) was confirmed by EPR analyses using cobalt-substituted enzyme. The oxy form was produced also under solution conditions at -7 °C, with the extremely low affinity for O(2). The low O(2) affinity was not caused by a distal steric protein effect and by rupture of the Fe(2+)-proximal His bond as revealed by extended x-ray absorption fine structure. The midpoint potential of the enzyme-heme was +187 mV, which is the most positive among high spin protoheme-hemoproteins. This observation implies that the electron density of the ferrous heme iron is relatively low by comparison to those of other hemoproteins, presumably due to the weak Fe(2+)-proximal His bond. Based on our results, we propose that the weak Fe(2+)-proximal His bond is a key determinant for the low O(2) affinity of the heme moiety of soluble guanylate cyclase.
Cardiac and skeletal muscle development and maintenance require complex interactions between DNA-binding proteins and chromatin remodeling factors. We previously reported that Smyd1, a muscle-restricted histone methyltransferase, is essential for cardiogenesis and functions with a network of cardiac regulatory proteins. Here we show that the muscle-specific transcription factor skNAC is the major binding partner for Smyd1 in the developing heart. Targeted deletion of skNAC in mice resulted in partial embryonic lethality by embryonic day 12.5, with ventricular hypoplasia and decreased cardiomyocyte proliferation that were similar but less severe than in Smyd1 mutants. Expression of Irx4, a ventricle-specific transcription factor down-regulated in hearts lacking Smyd1, also depended on the presence of skNAC. Viable skNAC(-/-) adult mice had reduced postnatal skeletal muscle growth and impaired regenerative capacity after cardiotoxin-induced injury. Satellite cells isolated from skNAC(-/-) mice had impaired survival compared with wild-type littermate satellite cells. Our results indicate that skNAC plays a critical role in ventricular cardiomyocyte expansion and regulates postnatal skeletal muscle growth and regeneration in mice.
Paenibacillus polymyxa E681, a spore-forming, low-G+C, Gram-positive bacterium isolated from the rhizosphere of winter barley grown in South Korea, has great potential for agricultural applications due to its ability to promote plant growth and suppress plant diseases. Here we present the complete genome sequence of P. polymyxa E681. Its 5.4-Mb genome encodes functions specialized to the plant-associated lifestyle and characteristics that are beneficial to plants, such as the production of a plant growth hormone, antibiotics, and hydrolytic enzymes.
A marine bacterium, Hahella chejuensis, recently has attracted attention due to its lytic activity against a red-tide dinoflagellate. The algicidal function originates from its red pigment, prodigiosin, which also exhibits immunosuppressive or anticancer activity. Genome sequencing and functional analysis revealed a gene set contained in the hap gene cluster that is responsible for the biosynthesis of prodigiosin. To screen for the factors affecting the prodigiosin biosynthesis, we constructed a plasmid library of the H. chejuensis genomic DNA, introduced it into Escherichia coli strains harboring the hap cluster, and observed changes in production of the red pigment. Among the screened clones, hapXY genes whose products constitute a two-component signal transduction system were elucidated as positive regulators of the pigment production. In addition, an Hfq-dependent, noncoding region located at one end of the hap cluster was confirmed to play roles in regulation. Identification of factors involved in the regulation of prodigiosin biosynthesis should help in understanding how the prodigiosin-biosynthetic pathway is organized and controlled and also aid in modulating the overexpression of prodigiosin in a heterologous host, such as E. coli, or in the natural producer, H. chejuensis.
The usefulness of constitutional diagnoses based on skin measurements has been established in oriental medicine. However, it is very difficult to standardize traditional diagnosis methods. According to Sasang constitutional medicine, humans can be distinguished based on properties of the skin, including its texture, roughness, hardness and elasticity. The elasticity of the skin was previously used to distinguish between people with Tae-eumin (TE) and Soeumin (SE) constitutions. The present study designed a system that uses a compression method to measure the elasticity of hand skin and evaluated its measurement repeatability. The proposed system was used to compare the skin elasticity between SE and TE subjects, which produced a measurement repeatability error of <3%. The proposed system is suitable for use as a quantitative constitution diagnosis method for distinguishing between TE and SE subjects with an acceptable level of uncertainty.
The rates of antibiotic susceptibility and resistance were investigated in Streptococcus iniae and Streptococcus parauberis isolates obtained from diseased olive flounders (Paralichthys olivaceus) collected from fish farms in Jeju Island, Korea. Isolates of S. iniae (n=65) were susceptible to cefotaxime, erythromycin, ofloxacin, penicillin, tetracycline and vancomycin, as demonstrated by the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) test. Isolates of S. parauberis (n=86) were highly resistant to erythromycin (58% of the 86 isolates tested) and tetracycline (63% of the 86 isolates tested). Fifty-four isolates of tetracycline-resistant S. parauberis contained the tet(M/O/S) genes, of which 39 and 12 isolates contained the tet(M) and tet(S) genes, respectively, whereas 3 isolates contained both the tet(M) and tet(S) genes. Among the erythromycin-resistant isolates of S. parauberis (n=50) only 14 contained the erm(B) gene. These results suggest that the tet(S) and erm(B) genes of S. parauberis are involved in the acquisition of high-level resistance to erythromycin and tetracycline. Our findings reveal a high rate of antibiotic resistance among strains of S. parauberis and emphasize the need to develop an appropriate vaccine to reduce the use of antibiotics.
The transforming growth factor (TGF)-beta superfamily regulates cell proliferation, apoptosis, differentiation, migration, and development. Canonical TGFbeta signals are transduced to the nucleus via Smads in both major signaling branches, bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) or Activin/Nodal/TGFbeta. Smurf ubiquitin (Ub) ligases attenuate these pathways by targeting Smads and other signaling components for degradation by the 26S proteasome. Here, we identify tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-receptor-associated factor-4 (TRAF4) as a new target of Smurf1, which polyubiquitylates TRAF4 to trigger its proteasomal destruction. Unlike other TRAF family members, which mediate signal transduction by TNF, interleukin, or Toll-like receptors, we find that TRAF4 potentiates BMP and Nodal signaling. In the frog Xenopus laevis, TRAF4 mRNA is stored maternally in the egg animal pole, and in the embryo it is expressed in the gastrula marginal zone, neural plate, and cranial and trunk neural crest. Knockdown of embryonic TRAF4 impairs signaling, neural crest development and neural folding, whereas TRAF4 overexpression boosts signaling and expands the neural crest. In human embryonic kidney 293 cells, small interfering RNA knockdown of Smurf1 elevates TRAF4 levels, indicating endogenous regulation of TRAF4 by Smurf1. Our results uncover new functions for TRAF4 as a Smurf1-regulated mediator of BMP and Nodal signaling that are essential for neural crest development and neural plate morphogenesis.
The etiological agents of streptococcosis were isolated from diseased olive flounder collected on the Jeju island of Korea. A total of 151 bacterial isolates were collected between 2003 and 2006. The isolates were examined using various phenotypic and proteomic analyses, including sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), immunoblotting, and glycoprotein assays. In addition, isolates were grown on blood agar to assess hemolytic activity, and biochemical assays were performed using the API20 Strep kit. Our results revealed that all isolates were nonmotile, Gram-positive cocci that displayed negative catalase and oxidase activities. Multiplex PCR assays revealed that 43% and 57% of the isolates were Streptococcus iniae and Streptococcus parauberis, respectively. These results were consistent with those of the SDS-PAGE and immunoblot analyses using whole-cell lysates of bacterial isolates. Significant differences were observed with respect to the Voges-Proskauer, pyrrodonyl arylamidase, alkaline phosphatase, and hemolytic activities of the S. iniae and S. parauberis isolates. Isolates of S. iniae displayed uniform profiles in the immunoblot and glycoprotein assays; however, immunoblot assays of S. parauberis isolates (using a chicken IgY antibody raised against a homologous isolate) revealed three distinct antigenic profiles. Our findings suggest that S. parauberis and S. iniae are endemic pathogens responsible for the development of streptococcosis in olive flounder.
The Twin Bridges Training Area (TBTA) in the Republic of Korea consists of dirt roads, barren training areas, and forested hillsides adjacent to linear and broad expanses of tall grasses, herbaceous, and scrub vegetation. Of the six species of small mammals, the striped field mouse, Apodemus agrarius, was the most frequently captured (96.1%). Apodemus agrarius capture rates varied from 17.7 to 33.2% during three trapping periods. Gravid females were observed during November-December 2006 (8.4%) and March 2007 (5.1%). In 2005, the overall seroprevalence of Hantaan virus (HTNV) was high (34.4%) and lower during surveys in 2006 (14.2%) and 2007 (13.8%). Seroprevalence was directly correlated with weight increase of A. agrarius.
Anomalous origin of the left coronary artery from the pulmonary artery (ALCAPA) is a rare congenital anomaly associated with very high mortality during infancy. We report a 35-year-old female patient with ALCAPA initially visualized by echocardiography. She visited outpatient department presenting with intermittent chest discomfort for 3 weeks. Transthoracic echocardiography showed left coronary artery arising from main pulmonary artery and abundant septal color flow Doppler signals. Transesophageal echocardiography clearly revealed markedly dilated and tortuous right coronary artery showing windsock appearance. Multidetector computed tomography and coronary angiography enabled visualization of anomalous left coronary artery originating from left side of main pulmonary trunk. After treadmill exercise test which showed ST-segment depression presenting inducible myocardial ischemia, patient underwent direct re-implantation of the anomalous coronary artery into the aorta without any complication.
Recent genomewide association studies of large samples have identified genes that are associated with blood pressure. The Global Blood Pressure Genetics (Global BPgen) and Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genome Epidemiology (CHARGE) consortiums identified 14 loci that govern blood pressure on a genomewide significance level, one of which is CASZ1 confirmed in both Europeans and Asians. CASZ1 is a zinc finger transcription factor that controls apoptosis and cell fate and suppresses neuroblastoma tumor growth by reprogramming gene expression, like a tumor suppressor. To validate the function of CASZ1 in blood pressure, we decreased Casz1 mRNA levels in mice by siRNA. Casz1 siRNA reduced mRNA levels by 59% in a mouse cell line. A polyethylenimine-mixed siRNA complex was injected into mouse tail veins, reducing Casz1 mRNA expression to 45% in the kidney. However, blood pressure in the treated mice was unaffected, despite a 55% reduction in Casz1 mRNA levels in the kidney on multiple siRNA injections daily. Even though Casz1 siRNA-treated mice did not experience any significant change in blood pressure, our study demonstrates the value of in vivo siRNA injection in analyzing the function of candidate genes identified by genomewide association studies.
Fusobacterium species are uncommon causes of osteomyelitis. These organisms are normal flora of the oral cavity. Therefore, they mostly cause osteomyelitis of the head and neck. Hematogenous osteomyelitis at distant sites other than the head and neck has rarely been reported in pediatric or immunocompromised patients. Here, we report the first case of osteomyelitis of a long bone combined with a muscle abscess due to Fusobacterium nucleatum in an otherwise healthy adult.
Transforming growth factor ? superfamily members signal through Smad transcription factors. Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) act via Smads 1, 5 and 8 and TGF-?s signal through Smads 2 and 3. The endocytic adaptor protein Eps15R, or epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor pathway substrate 15-related protein is a component of EGF signal transduction, mediating internalization of the EGF receptor. We show that it interacts with Smad proteins, is required for BMP signalling in animal caps and stimulates Smad1 transcriptional activity. This function resides in the Asp-Pro-Phe motif-enriched DPF domain of Eps15R, which activates transcription and antagonizes Smad2 signalling. In living cells, Eps15R segregates into spatially distinct regions with different Smads, indicating an unrecognized level of Smad compartmentalization.
With the rapid aging of the population, Korea introduced public long-term care insurance for older people in 2008. The long-term care insurance was designed as a separate scheme from the national health insurance, with eligibility qualifications and the certification process based on functional disability, benefits and coverage of community-based and institutional care, and a financing structure through multi-party contributions. Delivering appropriate health services to long-term care beneficiaries who manifest a high prevalence of comorbid chronic conditions with rising healthcare costs, however, presents a particular challenge. The lack of coordination between the health and long-term care sectors, limited consideration of physicians assessments in the certification process, inadequate provision of health services in long-term care facilities, and overlapping and inefficient use of care resources act as barriers to providing comprehensive healthcare for older beneficiaries. Through active participation in the long-term care system, health professionals can help older patients navigate through the complex long-term care terrain to obtain quality healthcare.
The importance of miRNAs during development and disease processes is well established. However, most studies have been done in cells or with patient tissues, and therefore the physiological roles of miRNAs are not well understood. To unravel in vivo functions of miRNAs, we have generated conditional, reporter-tagged knockout-first mice for numerous evolutionarily conserved miRNAs. Here, we report the generation of 162 miRNA targeting vectors, 64 targeted ES cell lines, and 46 germline-transmitted miRNA knockout mice. In vivo lacZ reporter analysis in 18 lines revealed highly tissue-specific expression patterns and their miRNA expression profiling matched closely with published expression data. Most miRNA knockout mice tested were viable, supporting a mechanism by which miRNAs act redundantly with other miRNAs or other pathways. These data and collection of resources will be of value for the in vivo dissection of miRNA functions in mouse models.
During leaf senescence, plants degrade chlorophyll to colorless linear tetrapyrroles that are stored in the vacuole of senescing cells. The early steps of chlorophyll breakdown occur in plastids. To date, five chlorophyll catabolic enzymes (CCEs), NONYELLOW COLORING1 (NYC1), NYC1-LIKE, pheophytinase, pheophorbide a oxygenase (PAO), and red chlorophyll catabolite reductase, have been identified; these enzymes catalyze the stepwise degradation of chlorophyll to a fluorescent intermediate, pFCC, which is then exported from the plastid. In addition, STAY-GREEN (SGR), Mendels green cotyledon gene encoding a chloroplast protein, is required for the initiation of chlorophyll breakdown in plastids. Senescence-induced SGR binds to light-harvesting complex II (LHCII), but its exact role remains elusive. Here, we show that all five CCEs also specifically interact with LHCII. In addition, SGR and CCEs interact directly or indirectly with each other at LHCII, and SGR is essential for recruiting CCEs in senescing chloroplasts. PAO, which had been attributed to the inner envelope, is found to localize in the thylakoid membrane. These data indicate a predominant role for the SGR-CCE-LHCII protein interaction in the breakdown of LHCII-located chlorophyll, likely to allow metabolic channeling of phototoxic chlorophyll breakdown intermediates upstream of nontoxic pFCC.
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