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1.  Imaging for Prediction of Functional Outcome and Assessment of Recovery in Ischemic Stroke 
doi:10.1161/STROKEAHA.113.003611
PMCID: PMC3981064  PMID: 24595589
Imaging; Stroke; Recovery; CT; MRI; PET; DTI
2.  RMND5 from Xenopus laevis Is an E3 Ubiquitin-Ligase and Functions in Early Embryonic Forebrain Development 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(3):e0120342.
In Saccharomyces cerevisiae the Gid-complex functions as an ubiquitin-ligase complex that regulates the metabolic switch between glycolysis and gluconeogenesis. In higher organisms six conserved Gid proteins form the CTLH protein-complex with unknown function. Here we show that Rmnd5, the Gid2 orthologue from Xenopus laevis, is an ubiquitin-ligase embedded in a high molecular weight complex. Expression of rmnd5 is strongest in neuronal ectoderm, prospective brain, eyes and ciliated cells of the skin and its suppression results in malformations of the fore- and midbrain. We therefore suggest that Xenopus laevis Rmnd5, as a subunit of the CTLH complex, is a ubiquitin-ligase targeting an unknown factor for polyubiquitination and subsequent proteasomal degradation for proper fore- and midbrain development.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0120342
PMCID: PMC4368662  PMID: 25793641
3.  Tracking Post-Hibernation Behavior and Early Migration Does Not Reveal the Expected Sex-Differences in a “Female-Migrating” Bat 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(12):e114810.
Long-distance migration is a rare phenomenon in European bats. Genetic analyses and banding studies show that females can cover distances of up to 1,600 km, whereas males are sedentary or migrate only short distances. The onset of this sex-biased migration is supposed to occur shortly after rousing from hibernation and when the females are already pregnant. We therefore predicted that the sexes are exposed to different energetic pressures in early spring, and this should be reflected in their behavior and physiology. We investigated this in one of the three Central European long-distance migrants, the common noctule (Nyctalus noctula) in Southern Germany recording the first individual partial migration tracks of this species. In contrast to our predictions, we found no difference between male and female home range size, activity, habitat use or diet. Males and females emerged from hibernation in similar body condition and mass increase rate was the same in males and females. We followed the first migration steps, up to 475 km, of radio-tagged individuals from an airplane. All females, as well as some of the males, migrated away from the wintering area in the same northeasterly direction. Sex differences in long-distance migratory behavior were confirmed through stable isotope analysis of hair, which showed greater variation in females than in males. We hypothesize that both sexes faced similarly good conditions after hibernation and fattened at maximum rates, thus showing no differences in their local behavior. Interesting results that warrant further investigation are the better initial condition of the females and the highly consistent direction of the first migratory step in this population as summering habitats of the common noctule occur at a broad range in Northern Europe. Only research focused on individual strategies will allow us to fully understand the migratory behavior of European bats.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0114810
PMCID: PMC4269398  PMID: 25517947
4.  Structure and functional characterization of pyruvate decarboxylase from Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus 
Background
Bacterial pyruvate decarboxylases (PDC) are rare. Their role in ethanol production and in bacterially mediated ethanologenic processes has, however, ensured a continued and growing interest. PDCs from Zymomonas mobilis (ZmPDC), Zymobacter palmae (ZpPDC) and Sarcina ventriculi (SvPDC) have been characterized and ZmPDC has been produced successfully in a range of heterologous hosts. PDCs from the Acetobacteraceae and their role in metabolism have not been characterized to the same extent. Examples include Gluconobacter oxydans (GoPDC), G. diazotrophicus (GdPDC) and Acetobacter pasteutrianus (ApPDC). All of these organisms are of commercial importance.
Results
This study reports the kinetic characterization and the crystal structure of a PDC from Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus (GdPDC). Enzyme kinetic analysis indicates a high affinity for pyruvate (KM 0.06 mM at pH 5), high catalytic efficiencies (1.3 • 106 M−1•s−1 at pH 5), pHopt of 5.5 and Topt at 45°C. The enzyme is not thermostable (T½ of 18 minutes at 60°C) and the calculated number of bonds between monomers and dimers do not give clear indications for the relatively lower thermostability compared to other PDCs. The structure is highly similar to those described for Z. mobilis (ZmPDC) and A. pasteurianus PDC (ApPDC) with a rmsd value of 0.57 Å for Cα when comparing GdPDC to that of ApPDC. Indole-3-pyruvate does not serve as a substrate for the enzyme. Structural differences occur in two loci, involving the regions Thr341 to Thr352 and Asn499 to Asp503.
Conclusions
This is the first study of the PDC from G. diazotrophicus (PAL5) and lays the groundwork for future research into its role in this endosymbiont. The crystal structure of GdPDC indicates the enzyme to be evolutionarily closely related to homologues from Z. mobilis and A. pasteurianus and suggests strong selective pressure to keep the enzyme characteristics in a narrow range. The pH optimum together with reduced thermostability likely reflect the host organisms niche and conditions under which these properties have been naturally selected for. The lack of activity on indole-3-pyruvate excludes this decarboxylase as the enzyme responsible for indole acetic acid production in G. diazotrophicus.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12900-014-0021-1) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1186/s12900-014-0021-1
PMCID: PMC4428508  PMID: 25369873
5.  Altered information processing in children with focal epilepsies with and without intellectual disability 
Functional Neurology  2014;29(2):87-97.
Summary
The aim of this exploratory study was to investigate the relationship between focal interictal epileptiform discharges (IEDs), intellectual disability and cortical information processing in children with partial epilepsy. Two groups of patients – Group 1 (n = 9 patients) with focal IEDs and normal IQ and Group 2 (n = 10 patients) with focal IEDs and intellectual disability – were compared with 14 healthy control participants. A computerized choice reaction time task (go/no-go paradigm) was performed and event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded. When an IED occurred during the period between the presentation of the stimulus and the response, the response was defined as a response with IED. Omission errors, commission errors and reaction time were evaluated in temporal relationship to IEDs.
The Group 1 patients did not differ from the healthy children in neurophysiological functions and ERP amplitudes. The Group 2 children showed inferior performances in verbal learning and memory, cognitive flexibility and selective attention, and were characterized by low ERP amplitudes compared with the epilepsy patients with normal IQ and the healthy children. We were not able to identify any significant relationship between IEDs and cognitive functions in either group of patients. Our findings suggest that the impact of IEDs on the overall intellectual abilities of epilepsy patients may not be as significant as previously thought. Moreover, it is likely that abnormalities in cognitive information processing as revealed by lower ERP amplitudes, occurrence of IEDs, and intellectual disabilities may represent common abnormal processes and may not be causally related to each other.
PMCID: PMC4198165  PMID: 25306118
epilepsy; go/no-go; intellectual disability; mismatch negativity; visual evoked potentials
6.  γδ T cells exhibit multifunctional and protective memory in intestinal tissues 
Immunity  2013;39(1):184-195.
Summary
The study of T cell memory and the target of vaccine design has focused on memory subsumed by T cells bearing the αβ T cell receptor. Alternatively, γδ T cells are thought to provide rapid immunity particularly at mucosal borders. Here we have shown that a distinct subset of mucosal γδ T cells mounts an immune response to oral Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) infection leading to the development of multifunctional memory T cells in the murine intestinal mucosa that is capable of simultaneously producing interferon-γ and interleukin-17A. Challenge infection with oral Lm, but not oral Salmonella or intravenous Lm, induced rapid expansion of memory γδ T cells suggesting contextual specificity to the priming pathogen. Importantly, memory γδ T cells were able to provide enhanced protection against infection. These findings illustrate a previously unrecognized role for γδ T cells with hallmarks of adaptive immunity in the intestinal mucosa.
doi:10.1016/j.immuni.2013.06.015
PMCID: PMC3749916  PMID: 23890071
7.  The Influence of MgH2 on the Assessment of Electrochemical Data to Predict the Degradation Rate of Mg and Mg Alloys 
Mg and Mg alloys are becoming more and more of interest for several applications. In the case of biomaterial applications, a special interest exists due to the fact that a predictable degradation should be given. Various investigations were made to characterize and predict the corrosion behavior in vitro and in vivo. Mostly, the simple oxidation of Mg to Mg2+ ions connected with adequate hydrogen development is assumed, and the negative difference effect (NDE) is attributed to various mechanisms and electrochemical results. The aim of this paper is to compare the different views on the corrosion pathway of Mg or Mg alloys and to present a neglected pathway based on thermodynamic data as a guideline for possible reactions combined with experimental observations of a delay of visible hydrogen evolution during cyclic voltammetry. Various reaction pathways are considered and discussed to explain these results, like the stability of the Mg+ intermediate state, the stability of MgH2 and the role of hydrogen overpotential. Finally, the impact of MgH2 formation is shown as an appropriate base for the prediction of the degradation behavior and calculation of the corrosion rate of Mg and Mg alloys.
doi:10.3390/ijms150711456
PMCID: PMC4139793  PMID: 24972140
magnesium; magnesium alloys; magnesium hydride; corrosion; degradation
8.  Translational Research: Palatal-derived Ecto-mesenchymal Stem Cells from Human Palate: A New Hope for Alveolar Bone and Cranio-Facial Bone Reconstruction 
The management of facial defects has rapidly changed in the last decade. Functional and esthetic requirements have steadily increased along with the refinements of surgery. In the case of advanced atrophy or jaw defects, extensive horizontal and vertical bone augmentation is often unavoidable to enable patients to be fitted with implants. Loss of vertical alveolar bone height is the most common cause for a non primary stability of dental implants in adults. At present, there is no ideal therapeutic approach to cure loss of vertical alveolar bone height and achieve optimal pre-implantological bone regeneration before dental implant placement. Recently, it has been found that specific populations of stem cells and/or progenitor cells could be isolated from different dental resources, namely the dental follicle, the dental pulp and the periodontal ligament. Our research group has cultured palatal-derived stem cells (paldSCs) as dentospheres and further differentiated into various cells of the neuronal and osteogenic lineage, thereby demonstrating their stem cell state. In this publication will be shown whether paldSCs could be differentiated into the osteogenic lineage and, if so, whether these cells are able to regenerate alveolar bone tissue in vivo in an athymic rat model. Furthermore, using these data we have started a proof of principle clinical- and histological controlled study using stem cell-rich palatal tissues for improving the vertical alveolar bone augmentation in critical size defects. The initial results of the study demonstrate the feasibility of using stem cell-mediated tissue engineering to treat alveolar bone defects in humans.
doi:10.15283/ijsc.2014.7.1.23
PMCID: PMC4049728  PMID: 24921024
Human palatal-derived stem cells (paldSCs); Osteogenic differentiation; Athymic immunodeficient rats; Stem-cell enriched palatal-derived tissues; Proof of principle clinical-and histologically-con; Osteoplastic surgical methods
9.  Systems analysis of the prostate tumor suppressor NKX3.1 supports roles in DNA repair and luminal cell differentiation 
F1000Research  2014;3:115.
NKX3.1 is a homeobox transcription factor whose function as a prostate tumor suppressor remains insufficiently understood because neither the transcriptional program governed by NKX3.1, nor its interacting proteins have been fully revealed. Using affinity purification and mass spectrometry, we have established an extensive NKX3.1 interactome which contains the DNA repair proteins Ku70, Ku80, and PARP, thus providing a molecular underpinning to previous reports implicating NKX3.1 in DNA repair. Transcriptomic profiling of NKX3.1-negative prostate epithelial cells acutely expressing NKX3.1 revealed a rapid and complex response that is a near mirror image of the gene expression signature of human prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PIN). Pathway and network analyses suggested that NKX3.1 actuates a cellular reprogramming toward luminal cell differentiation characterized by suppression of pro-oncogenic c-MYC and interferon-STAT signaling and activation of tumor suppressor pathways. Consistently, ectopic expression of NKX3.1 conferred a growth arrest depending on TNFα and JNK signaling. We propose that the tumor suppressor function of NKX3.1 entails a transcriptional program that maintains the differentiation state of secretory luminal cells and that disruption of NKX3.1 contributes to prostate tumorigenesis by permitting luminal cell de-differentiation potentially augmented by defects in DNA repair.
doi:10.12688/f1000research.3818.1
PMCID: PMC4141641  PMID: 25177484
10.  Relative impact of 3- and 5-hydroxyl groups of cytosporone B on cancer cell viability† 
MedChemComm  2012;4(2):332-339.
A novel and the shortest route, thus far, for preparing cytosporone B (Csn-B) is reported. Csn-B and two analogs were used to probe the importance of hydroxyl groups at the 3- and 5-positions of the Csn-B benzene ring in inhibiting the viability of human H460 lung cancer and LNCaP prostate cancer cells, inducing H460 cell apoptosis, and interacting with the NR4A1 (TR3) ligand-binding domain (LBD). These studies indicate that Csn-B and 5-Me-Csn-B, having a phenolic hydroxyl at the 3-position of their aromatic rings, had similar activities in inhibiting cancer cell viability and in inducing apoptosis, whereas 3,5-(Me)2-Csn-B was unable to do so. These results are in agreement with ligand-binding experiments showing that the interaction with the NR4A1 LBD required the presence of the 3-hydroxyl group.
doi:10.1039/C2MD20243C
PMCID: PMC4005383  PMID: 24795803
11.  Destruction of RhoA CULtivates actin 
Molecular cell  2009;35(6):735-736.
Cullin 3, the core subunit of the CRL3 ubiquitin ligase family, is essential for development, but its substrates remain poorly defined. Here, Chen et al. (2009) report that CRL3BACURD targets the RhoA GTPase for degradation thereby maintaining actin cytoskeleton integrity.
doi:10.1016/j.molcel.2009.09.012
PMCID: PMC3981991  PMID: 19782022
12.  The flavoproteome of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae☆ 
Biochimica et Biophysica Acta  2014;1844(3):535-544.
Genome analysis of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae identified 68 genes encoding flavin-dependent proteins (1.1% of protein encoding genes) to which 47 distinct biochemical functions were assigned. The majority of flavoproteins operate in mitochondria where they participate in redox processes revolving around the transfer of electrons to the electron transport chain. In addition, we found that flavoenzymes play a central role in various aspects of iron metabolism, such as iron uptake, the biogenesis of iron–sulfur clusters and insertion of the heme cofactor into apocytochromes. Another important group of flavoenzymes is directly (Dus1-4p and Mto1p) or indirectly (Tyw1p) involved in reactions leading to tRNA-modifications. Despite the wealth of genetic information available for S. cerevisiae, we were surprised that many flavoproteins are poorly characterized biochemically. For example, the role of the yeast flavodoxins Pst2p, Rfs1p and Ycp4p with regard to their electron donor and acceptor is presently unknown. Similarly, the function of the heterodimeric Aim45p/Cir1p, which is homologous to the electron-transferring flavoproteins of higher eukaryotes, in electron transfer processes occurring in the mitochondrial matrix remains to be elucidated. This lack of information extends to the five membrane proteins involved in riboflavin or FAD transport as well as FMN and FAD homeostasis within the yeast cell. Nevertheless, several yeast flavoproteins, were identified as convenient model systems both in terms of their mechanism of action as well as structurally to improve our understanding of diseases caused by dysfunctional human flavoprotein orthologs.
Highlights
•Overview of flavin-dependent proteins in S. cerevisiae.•The role of yeast flavoproteins in iron metabolism.•Biosynthesis and transport of flavins.•Yeast as a model organism for investigating human diseases linked to flavoproteins.
doi:10.1016/j.bbapap.2013.12.015
PMCID: PMC3991850  PMID: 24373875
DHAP, dihydroxy acetone phosphate; DHBP, 3,4-dihydroxy-2-butanone-4-phosphate; DRAP, 2,5-diamino-6-(ribosylamino)-4-(3H)-pyrimidinone 5′-phosphate; ER, endoplasmic reticulum; ETC, electron transport chain; Gly3p, glycerol 3-phosphate; gluSA, γ-glutamic acid semialdehyde; Mia(40), mitochondrial intermembrane space import and assay/oxidoreductase 40; ORF, open reading frame; Q, ubiquionone; Iron metabolism; Mitochondrion; Redox balance; tRNA-modifications; Membrane transporters
13.  Molecular mechanism of protrusion formation during cell-to-cell spread of Listeria 
The bacterial pathogen Listeria monocytogenes spreads within human tissues using a motility process dependent on the host actin cytoskeleton. Cell-to-cell spread involves the ability of motile bacteria to remodel the host plasma membrane into protrusions, which are internalized by neighboring cells. Recent results indicate that formation of Listeria protrusions in polarized human cells involves bacterial antagonism of a host signaling pathway comprised of the scaffolding protein Tuba and its effectors N-WASP and Cdc42. These three human proteins form a complex that generates tension at apical cell junctions. Listeria relieves this tension and facilitates protrusion formation by secreting a protein called InlC. InlC interacts with a Src Homology 3 (SH3) domain in Tuba, thereby displacing N-WASP from this domain. Interaction of InlC with Tuba is needed for efficient Listeria spread in cultured human cells and infected animals. Recent structural data has elucidated the mechanistic details of InlC/Tuba interaction, revealing that InlC and N-WASP compete for partly overlapping binding surfaces in the Tuba SH3 domain. InlC binds this domain with higher affinity than N-WASP, explaining how InlC is able to disrupt Tuba/N-WASP complexes.
doi:10.3389/fcimb.2014.00021
PMCID: PMC3930863  PMID: 24600591
Listeria monocytogenes; cell-to-cell spread; protrusion; InlC; Tuba; SH3 domain; cortical tension; structural elucidation
14.  Does an aerobic endurance programme have an influence on information processing in migraineurs? 
Background
Migraine is a disorder of central information processing which is characterized by a reduced habituation of event-related potentials. There might be positive effects of aerobic exercise on brain function and pain. The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of exercise on information processing and clinical course of migraine.
Methods
33 patients completed a ten-week aerobic exercise programme. To examine the influence of the treatment on information processing and attention, Trail Making Test (TMT) A and B, d2-Letter Cancellation Test (LCT) and recordings of the Contingent Negative Variation (CNV) were performed before and after the training.
Results
Patients showed a significant reduction of the migraine attack frequency, the iCNV-amplitude and the processing time for TMT-A and TMT-B after treatment. Moreover, there was a significant increase of the habituation and positive changes in parameters of attention (d2-LCT) after the training.
Conclusions
This study demonstrates that aerobic exercise programme influences central information processing and leads to clinical effects on the migraine symptomatology. The results can be interpreted in terms of an improvement of a dysfunctional information processing and a stimulus selection under aerobic exercise.
doi:10.1186/1129-2377-15-11
PMCID: PMC4017768  PMID: 24528557
Migraine; Sport; Exercise; Jogging; Walking; Contingent negative variation; CNV; Habituation; Dishabituation
15.  PET/MRI for Neurological Applications 
PET and MRI provide complementary information in the study of the human brain. Simultaneous PET/MR data acquisition allows the spatial and temporal correlation of the measured signals, opening up opportunities impossible to realize using stand-alone instruments. This paper reviews the methodological improvements and potential neurological and psychiatric applications of this novel technology. We first present methods for improving the performance and information content of each modality by using the information provided by the other technique. On the PET side, we discuss methods that use the simultaneously acquired MR data to improve the PET data quantification. On the MR side, we present how improved PET quantification could be used to validate a number of MR techniques. Finally, we describe promising research, translational and clinical applications that could benefit from these advanced tools.
doi:10.2967/jnumed.112.105346
PMCID: PMC3806202  PMID: 23143086
simultaneous PET/MRI; multimodal imaging; neurology
16.  CAND1 controls in vivo dynamics of the Cullin 1-RING ubiquitin ligase repertoire 
Nature communications  2013;4:1642.
The combinatorial architecture of cullin 1-RING ubiquitin ligases (CRL1s), in which multiple F-box containing substrate receptors (FBPs) compete for access to CUL1, poses special challenges to assembling CRL1 complexes through high affinity protein interactions while maintaining the flexibility to dynamically sample the entire FBP repertoire. Here, using highly quantitative mass spectrometry, we demonstrate that this problem is addressed by CAND1, a factor that controls the dynamics of the global CRL1 network by promoting the assembly of newly synthesized FBPs with CUL1-RBX1 core complexes. Our studies of in vivo CRL1 dynamics and in vitro biochemical findings showing that CAND1 can displace FBPs from Cul1p suggest that CAND1 functions in a cycle that serves to exchange FBPs on CUL1 cores. We propose that this cycle assures comprehensive sampling of the entire FBP repertoire in order to maintain the CRL1 landscape, a function that we show to be critical for substrate degradation and normal physiology.
doi:10.1038/ncomms2636
PMCID: PMC3637025  PMID: 23535663
17.  Biliary phosphatidylcholine and lysophosphatidylcholine profiles in sclerosing cholangitis 
AIM: To analyze phospholipid profiles in intrahepatic bile from patients with primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC) and secondary sclerosing cholangitis (SSC).
METHODS: Intrahepatic bile specimens collected via endoscopic retrograde cholangiography from 41 patients were analyzed. Fourteen of these patients were diagnosed with PSC, 10 with SSC, 11 with choledocholithiasis or no identifiable biliary disease, and 6 with cholangiocellular carcinoma (CCC). Bile acid, cholesterol, protein, and bilirubin contents as well as pancreas lipase activity in bile were determined by biochemical methods. Phosphatidylcholine (PC) and lysophosphatidylcholine (LPC) species were quantified using nano-electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry.
RESULTS: Bile from all the examined patient groups showed a remarkably similar PC and LPC species composition, with only minor statistical differences. Total biliary PC concentrations were highest in controls (8030 ± 1843 μmol/L) and lowest in patients with CCC (1969 ± 981 μmol/L) (P = 0.005, controls vs SSC and CCC, respectively, P < 0.05). LPC contents in bile were overall low (4.2% ± 1.8%). Biliary LPC/PC ratios and ratios of biliary PC to bilirubin, PC to cholesterol, PC to protein, and PC to bile acids showed no intergroup differences.
CONCLUSION: PC and LPC profiles being similar in patients with or without sclerosing cholangitis, these phospholipids are likely not of major pathogenetic importance in this disease group.
doi:10.3748/wjg.v19.i33.5454
PMCID: PMC3761098  PMID: 24023488
Primary sclerosing cholangitis; Secondary sclerosing cholangitis; Cholangiocellular carcinoma; Phosphatidylcholine; Lysophosphatidylcholine; Bile; Mass spectrometry
18.  Small Molecule-Induced Mitochondrial Disruption Directs Prostate Cancer Inhibition via Unfolded Protein Response Signaling 
Oncotarget  2013;4(8):1212-1229.
We previously identified SMIP004 (N-(4-butyl-2-methyl-phenyl) acetamide) as a novel inducer of cancer-cell selective apoptosis of human prostate cancer cells. SMIP004 decreased the levels of positive cell cycle regulators, upregulated cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitors, and resulted in G1 arrest, inhibition of colony formation in soft agar, and cell death. However, the mechanism of SMIP004-induced cancer cell selective apoptosis remained unknown. Here, we used chemical genomic and proteomic profiling to unravel a SMIP004-induced pro-apoptotic pathway, which initiates with disruption of mitochondrial respiration leading to oxidative stress. This, in turn, activates two pathways, one eliciting cell cycle arrest by rapidly targeting cyclin D1 for proteasomal degradation and driving the transcriptional downregulation of the androgen receptor, and a second pathway that activates pro-apoptotic signaling through MAPK activation downstream of the unfolded protein response (UPR). SMIP004 potently inhibits the growth of prostate and breast cancer xenografts in mice. Our data suggest that SMIP004, by inducing mitochondrial ROS formation, targets specific sensitivities of prostate cancer cells to redox and bioenergetic imbalances that can be exploited in cancer therapy.
PMCID: PMC3787152  PMID: 23902736
Prostate cancer; cell cycle arrest; apoptosis; oxidative stress; small molecule inhibitor; mitochondrial function
19.  Stroke: Working toward a Prioritized World Agenda 
Background and Purpose
The aim of the Synergium was to devise and prioritize new ways of accelerating progress in reducing the risks, effects, and consequences of stroke.
Methods
Preliminary work was performed by 7 working groups of stroke leaders followed by a synergium (a forum for working synergistically together) with approximately 100 additional participants. The resulting draft document had further input from contributors outside the synergium.
Results
Recommendations of the Synergium are: Basic Science, Drug Development and Technology: There is a need to develop: (1) New systems of working together to break down the prevalent ‘silo’ mentality; (2) New models of vertically integrated basic, clinical, and epidemiological disciplines; and (3) Efficient methods of identifying other relevant areas of science. Stroke Prevention: (1) Establish a global chronic disease prevention initiative with stroke as a major focus. (2) Recognize not only abrupt clinical stroke, but subtle subclinical stroke, the commonest type of cerebrovascular disease, leading to impairments of executive function. (3) Develop, implement and evaluate a population approach for stroke prevention. (4) Develop public health communication strategies using traditional and novel (e.g., social media/marketing) techniques. Acute Stroke Management: Continue the establishment of stroke centers, stroke units, regional systems of emergency stroke care and telestroke networks. Brain Recovery and Rehabilitation: (1) Translate best neuroscience, including animal and human studies, into poststroke recovery research and clinical care. (2) Standardize poststroke rehabilitation based on best evidence. (3) Develop consensus on, then implementation of, standardized clinical and surrogate assessments. (4) Carry out rigorous clinical research to advance stroke recovery. Into the 21st Century: Web, Technology and Communications: (1) Work toward global unrestricted access to stroke-related information. (2) Build centralized electronic archives and registries. Foster Cooperation Among Stakeholders (large stroke organizations, nongovernmental organizations, governments, patient organizations and industry) to enhance stroke care. Educate and energize professionals, patients, the public and policy makers by using a ‘Brain Health’ concept that enables promotion of preventive measures.
Conclusions
To accelerate progress in stroke, we must reach beyond the current status scientifically, conceptually, and pragmatically. Advances can be made not only by doing, but ceasing to do. Significant savings in time, money, and effort could result from discontinuing practices driven by unsubstantiated opinion, unproven approaches, and financial gain. Systematic integration of knowledge into programs coupled with careful evaluation can speed the pace of progress
doi:10.1111/j.1747-4949.2010.00442.x
PMCID: PMC3712839  PMID: 20636706
Prevention; Rehabilitation; Stroke; Translational; Treatment
20.  Stroke: Working Toward a Prioritized World Agenda 
Background and Purpose
The aim of the Synergium was to devise and prioritize new ways of accelerating progress in reducing the risks, effects, and consequences of stroke.
Methods
Preliminary work was performed by 7 working groups of stroke leaders followed by a synergium (a forum for working synergistically together) with approximately 100 additional participants. The resulting draft document had further input from contributors outside the synergium.
Results
Recommendations of the Synergium are:
Basic Science, Drug Development and Technology: There is a need to develop: (1) New systems of working together to break down the prevalent “silo” mentality; (2) New models of vertically integrated basic, clinical, and epidemiological disciplines; and (3) Efficient methods of identifying other relevant areas of science.
Stroke Prevention: (1) Establish a global chronic disease prevention initiative with stroke as a major focus. (2) Recognize not only abrupt clinical stroke, but subtle subclinical stroke, the commonest type of cerebrovascular disease, leading to impairments of executive function. (3) Develop, implement and evaluate a population approach for stroke prevention. (4) Develop public health communication strategies using traditional and novel (eg, social media/marketing) techniques.
Acute Stroke Management: Continue the establishment of stroke centers, stroke units, regional systems of emergency stroke care and telestroke networks.
Brain Recovery and Rehabilitation: (1) Translate best neuroscience, including animal and human studies, into poststroke recovery research and clinical care. (2) Standardize poststroke rehabilitation based on best evidence. (3) Develop consensus on, then implementation of, standardized clinical and surrogate assessments. (4) Carry out rigorous clinical research to advance stroke recovery.
Into the 21st Century: Web, Technology and Communications: (1) Work toward global unrestricted access to stroke-related information. (2) Build centralized electronic archives and registries.
Foster Cooperation Among Stakeholders (large stroke organizations, nongovernmental organizations, governments, patient organizations and industry) to enhance stroke care.
Educate and energize professionals, patients, the public and policy makers by using a “Brain Health” concept that enables promotion of preventive measures.
Conclusions
To accelerate progress in stroke, we must reach beyond the current status scientifically, conceptually, and pragmatically. Advances can be made not only by doing, but ceasing to do. Significant savings in time, money, and effort could result from discontinuing practices driven by unsubstantiated opinion, unproven approaches, and financial gain. Systematic integration of knowledge into programs coupled with careful evaluation can speed the pace of progress.
doi:10.1161/STROKEAHA.110.586156
PMCID: PMC3712843  PMID: 20498453
prevention; rehabilitation; stroke; translational; treatment
21.  The human flavoproteome 
Graphical abstract
Highlights
► 89 genes encoding flavoproteins were identified in the human genome. ► Two thirds of human flavoproteins are linked to human diseases. ► Flavoenzymes are essential for the biosynthesis of other coenzymes and hormones. ► Flavoenzymes play a critical role in folate and cobalamin metabolism.
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) is an essential dietary compound used for the enzymatic biosynthesis of FMN and FAD. The human genome contains 90 genes encoding for flavin-dependent proteins, six for riboflavin uptake and transformation into the active coenzymes FMN and FAD as well as two for the reduction to the dihydroflavin form. Flavoproteins utilize either FMN (16%) or FAD (84%) while five human flavoenzymes have a requirement for both FMN and FAD. The majority of flavin-dependent enzymes catalyze oxidation–reduction processes in primary metabolic pathways such as the citric acid cycle, β-oxidation and degradation of amino acids. Ten flavoproteins occur as isozymes and assume special functions in the human organism. Two thirds of flavin-dependent proteins are associated with disorders caused by allelic variants affecting protein function. Flavin-dependent proteins also play an important role in the biosynthesis of other essential cofactors and hormones such as coenzyme A, coenzyme Q, heme, pyridoxal 5′-phosphate, steroids and thyroxine. Moreover, they are important for the regulation of folate metabolites by using tetrahydrofolate as cosubstrate in choline degradation, reduction of N-5.10-methylenetetrahydrofolate to N-5-methyltetrahydrofolate and maintenance of the catalytically competent form of methionine synthase. These flavoenzymes are discussed in detail to highlight their role in health and disease.
doi:10.1016/j.abb.2013.02.015
PMCID: PMC3684772  PMID: 23500531
Coenzyme A; Coenzyme Q; Folate; Heme; Pyridoxal 5′-phosphate; Steroids; Thyroxine; Vitamins
22.  Heterogeneous kinetics of AKT signaling in individual cells are accounted for by variable protein concentration 
In most solid cancers, cells harboring oncogenic mutations represent only a sub-fraction of the entire population. Within this sub-fraction the expression level of mutated proteins can vary significantly due to cellular variability limiting the efficiency of targeted therapy. To address the causes of the heterogeneity, we performed a systematic analysis of one of the most frequently mutated pathways in cancer cells, the phosphatidylinositol 3 kinase (PI3K) signaling pathway. Among others PI3K signaling is activated by the hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) that regulates proliferation of hepatocytes during liver regeneration but also fosters tumor cell proliferation. HGF-mediated responses of PI3K signaling were monitored both at the single cell and cell population level in primary mouse hepatocytes and in the hepatoma cell line Hepa1_6. Interestingly, we observed that the HGF-mediated AKT responses at the level of individual cells is rather heterogeneous. However, the overall average behavior of the single cells strongly resembled the dynamics of AKT activation determined at the cell population level. To gain insights into the molecular cause for the observed heterogeneous behavior of individual cells, we employed dynamic mathematical modeling in a stochastic framework. Our analysis demonstrated that intrinsic noise was not sufficient to explain the observed kinetic behavior, but rather the importance of extrinsic noise has to be considered. Thus, distinct from gene expression in the examined signaling pathway fluctuations of the reaction rates has only a minor impact whereas variability in the concentration of the various signaling components even in a clonal cell population is a key determinant for the kinetic behavior.
doi:10.3389/fphys.2012.00451
PMCID: PMC3508424  PMID: 23226133
mathematical modeling; HGF; PI3 kinase; AKT; single cell heterogeneity; live cell imaging; primary hepatocytes; hepatocellular carcinoma
23.  Heterogeneity in the penumbra 
Original experimental studies in nonhuman primate models of focal ischemia showed flow-related changes in evoked potentials that suggested a circumferential zone of low regional cerebral blood flow with normal K+ homeostasis, around a core of permanent injury in the striatum or the cortex. This became the basis for the definition of the ischemic penumbra. Imaging techniques of the time suggested a homogeneous core of injury, while positing a surrounding ‘penumbral' region that could be salvaged. However, both molecular studies and observations of vascular integrity indicate a more complex and dynamic situation in the ischemic core that also changes with time. The microvascular, cellular, and molecular events in the acute setting are compatible with heterogeneity of the injury within the injury center, which at early time points can be described as multiple ‘mini-cores' associated with multiple ‘mini-penumbras'. These observations suggest the progression of injury from many small foci to a homogeneous defect over time after the onset of ischemia. Recent observations with updated imaging techniques and data processing support these dynamic changes within the core and the penumbra in humans following focal ischemia.
doi:10.1038/jcbfm.2011.93
PMCID: PMC3185890  PMID: 21731034
focal ischemia; imaging; ischemic penumbra; metabolic characteristics; microvessel characteristics; molecular characteristics
24.  Stress-Coping and Cortisol Analysis in Patients with Non-Syndromic Cleft Lip and Palate: An Explorative Study 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(7):e41015.
Background
Non-syndromic clefts of the orofacial region occur in approximately 1 per 500 to 2,500 live births, depending on geographical area and ethnicity. It can be supposed that the disruption of the normal facial structure and the long-standing pressure of treatment from birth to adulthood bring about a range of life stressors which may lead to a long-lasting impact on affected subjects throughout their lives. Therefore, the present study aimed to assess different aspects of psychosocial stress in affected individuals.
Methods
The study was divided into two parts: first, the Trier Social Stress Test which involves uncontrollability and high levels of social-evaluative stress under real conditions and second, the query of various aspects of coping with psychosocial stress. The test group consisted of 30 affected adult subjects, and an equally sized control group of unaffected volunteers. Cortisol dysregulation was determined by saliva samples before and after stress induction. Meanwhile, participants were asked to complete the SVF 120 stress-coping questionnaire.
Results
The analysis of saliva samples showed a similar baseline concentration as well as a similar increase in cortisol levels after stress induction for both groups. Subsequently, the decline in cortisol concentrations was significantly faster in the CLP group (course: p<0.001; groups: p = 0.102; interaction: p = 0.167). The evaluation of the stress-coping questionnaire revealed a significantly shorter rumination about a stressful event in individuals with CLP-related malformations (p = 0.03).
Conclusion
We conclude that adults with CLP have significantly better stress-coping strategies than their healthy peers.
Trial Registration
German Clinical Trials Organization DRKS00003466
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0041015
PMCID: PMC3401206  PMID: 22911731
25.  Translational Control of Cell Division by Elongator 
Cell reports  2012;1(5):424-433.
SUMMARY
Elongator is required for the synthesis of the mcm5s2 modification found on tRNAs recognizing AA-ending codons. In order to obtain a global picture of the role of Elongator in translation, we used reverse protein arrays to screen the fission yeast proteome for translation defects. Unexpectedly, this revealed that Elongator inactivation mainly affected three specific functional groups including proteins implicated in cell division. The absence of Elongator results in a delay in mitosis onset and cytokinesis defects. We demonstrate that the kinase Cdr2, which is a central regulator of mitosis and cytokinesis, is under translational control by Elongator due to the Lysine codon usage bias of the cdr2 coding sequence. These findings uncover a mechanism by which the codon usage, coupled to tRNA modifications, fundamentally contributes to gene expression and cellular functions.
doi:10.1016/j.celrep.2012.04.001
PMCID: PMC3388810  PMID: 22768388

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