Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is a multi-factorial malignancy closely associated with environmental factors, genetic factors and Epstein-Barr virus infection. Human leukocyte antigen (HLA) complex, specially the region near HLA-A locus, was regarded as a major candidate region bearing NPC genetic susceptibility loci in many previous studies including two recent genome-wide association (GWA) studies. To provide further evidence for the NPC susceptibility in the region near HLA-A locus based on other previous studies, we carried out a two-stage hospital-based case control association study including 535 sporadic NPC patients and 525 cancer-free control subjects from Guangdong, a high prevalence area of NPC in China.
38 tag SNPs were initially selected by Heploview from the segment around HLA-A locus (from D6S211 to D6S510) and genotyped on GenomeLab SNPstream platform in 206 cases and 180 controls in the stage 1. Subsequently, the stage 1 significant SNPs and 17 additional SNPs were examined on another platform (Sequenom iPlex Assay) in another independent set of study population including 329 cases and 345 controls.
Totally eight SNPs from the segment from D6S211 to D6S510 within HLA complex were found to be significantly associated with NPC. Two of the most significant SNPs (rs9260734 and rs2517716) located near to HLA-A and HCG9 respectively were in strong LD with some other SNPs of this region reported by two previous GWA studies. Meanwhile, Meanwhile, novel independent susceptibility loci (rs9404952, Pcombined = 6.6 × 10-5, OR combined = 1.45) was found to be close to HLA-G.
Therefore, our present study supports that the segment from D6S211 to D6S510 in HLA complex region might contain NPC susceptibility loci which indeed needs to be fully investigated in the future.
Nasopharyngeal carcinoma; Single nucleotide polymorphism; Human leukocyte antigen (HLA)
The methylotrophic yeast, Pichia pastoris, offers the possibility to generate a high amount of recombinant proteins in a fast and easy way to use expression system. Being a single-celled microorganism, P. pastoris is easy to manipulate and grows rapidly on inexpensive media at high cell densities. A simple and direct method for the selection of high-producing clones can dramatically enhance the whole production process along with significant decrease in production costs.
A visual method for rapid selection of high-producing clones based on mannanase reporter system was developed. The study explained that it was possible to use mannanase activity as a measure of the expression level of the protein of interest. High-producing target protein clones were directly selected based on the size of hydrolysis holes in the selected plate. As an example, the target gene (9elp-hal18) was expressed and purified in Pichia pastoris using this technology.
A novel methodology is proposed for obtaining the high-producing clones of proteins of interest, based on the mannanase reporter system. This system may be adapted to other microorganisms, such as Saccharomyces cerevisiae for the selection of clones.
Drosophila has recently become a powerful model system to understand the mechanisms of temporal patterning of neural progenitors called neuroblasts (NBs). Two different temporal sequences of transcription factors (TFs) have been found to be sequentially expressed in NBs of two different systems: the Hunchback, Krüppel, Pdm1/Pdm2, Castor, and Grainyhead sequence in the Drosophila ventral nerve cord; and the Homothorax, Klumpfuss, Eyeless, Sloppy-paired, Dichaete, and Tailless sequence that patterns medulla NBs. In addition, the intermediate neural progenitors of type II NB lineages are patterned by a different sequence: Dichaete, Grainyhead, and Eyeless. These three examples suggest that temporal patterning of neural precursors by sequences of TFs is a common theme to generate neural diversity. Cross-regulations, including negative feedback regulation and positive feedforward regulation among the temporal factors, can facilitate the progression of the sequence. However, there are many remaining questions to understand the mechanism of temporal transitions. The temporal sequence progression is intimately linked to the progressive restriction of NB competence, and eventually determines the end of neurogenesis. Temporal identity has to be integrated with spatial identity information, as well as with the Notch-dependent binary fate choices, in order to generate specific neuron fates.
Side population (SP) cells are previously identified from bone marrow based on their capacity to efflux of the fluorescent dye Hoechst 33342. Recent studies demonstrate that SP cells isolated from various cancer cell lines and primary tumors possess stem-cell-like properties. Thus, targeting tumor SP cells may provide new strategies for treatment in clinic. We previously showed that 1,3,8-trihydroxy-6-methylanthraquinone (emodin), a reactive oxygen species (ROS) generator, enhanced sensitivity of gallbladder cancer SGC-996 cells to cisplatin (CDDP) via generation of ROS and downregulation of multidrug-resistance-associated protein 1 (MRP1). To determine whether emodin also acts effectively on cancer stem cells of gallbladder carcinoma, we use SP cells as a model of cancer stem-cell-like cells. Here, we found that emodin, via ROS-related mechanism and suppressing the function of ATP-binding cassette super-family G member (ABCG2), which is known to be associated with Hoechst dye efflux activity of SP cells, not only reduced the ratio, inhibited clone formation, and eliminated sphere formation of SP cells effectively, but also promoted obviously the intracellular accumulation of doxorubicin, the main substrate of the efflux pump ABCG2. In addition, emodin could sensitize CDDP, via inhibition of expression of ABCG2, to overcome chemoresistance of SP cells. Importantly, similar to the experiment in vitro, emodin/CDDP co-treatment in vivo suppressed the tumor growth derived from SP cells through downregulating ABCG2 expression. Our results suggest that emodin is an effective agent targeting cancer stem-like SP cells of gallbladder carcinoma, either alone or acts as a chemotherapy enhancer.
By combining pseudo-random bead-based aptamer libraries with conjugation chemistry, we have created next-generation aptamers, X-aptamers (XAs). Several X ligands can be added in a directed or random fashion to the aptamers to further enhance their binding affinities to the target proteins. Here we describe the addition of a drug (N-acetyl-2,3-dehydro-2-deoxyneuraminic acid) demonstrated to bind to CD44-HABD, to a complete monothioate backbone substituted aptamer to increase its binding affinity to the target protein by up to 23-fold, while increasing the drugs’ binding 1-million fold.
X-Aptamer; thioaptamer; aptamer selection; bead-based library; CD44-HABD
In an effort to reconstitute the NAD+ synthetic pathway in Escherichia coli (E. coli), we produced a set of gene knockout mutants with deficiencies in previously well-defined NAD+de novo and salvage pathways. Unexpectedly, the mutant deficient in NAD+de novo and salvage pathway I could grow in M9/nicotinamide medium, which was contradictory to the proposed classic NAD+ metabolism of E. coli. Such E. coli mutagenesis assay suggested the presence of an undefined machinery to feed nicotinamide into the NAD+ biosynthesis. We wanted to verify whether xanthosine phophorylase (xapA) contributed to a new NAD+ salvage pathway from nicotinamide.
Additional knockout of xapA further slowed down the bacterial growth in M9/nicotinamide medium, whereas the complementation of xapA restored the growth phenotype. To further validate the new function of xapA, we cloned and expressed E. coli xapA as a recombinant soluble protein. Biochemical assay confirmed that xapA was capable of using nicotinamide as a substrate for nicotinamide riboside formation.
Both the genetic and biochemical evidences indicated that xapA could convert nicotinamide to nicotinamide riboside in E. coli, albeit with relatively weak activity, indicating that xapA may contribute to a second NAD+ salvage pathway from nicotinamide. We speculate that this xapA-mediated NAD+ salvage pathway might be significant in some bacteria lacking NAD+de novo and NAD+ salvage pathway I or II, to not only use nicotinamide riboside, but also nicotinamide as precursors to synthesize NAD+. However, this speculation needs to be experimentally tested.
Purine nucleoside phosphorylase; Nicotinamide riboside; Salvage pathway; Pyridine nucleotide cycles
The sonochemical effects of ultrasound (US) treatment on 14 flavonoids representing the main flavonoids in citrus fruit were investigated in a standard mixture by stability evaluation of a model system. Degradation products were further tentatively identified by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and high-performance liquid chromatography–ultraviolet detection–electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry. Thirteen flavonoids (i.e., eriocitrin, narirutin, neohesperidin, quercitrin, eridictyol, didymin, naringenin, luteolin, sinensetin, nobiletin, tangeretin, naringin, and hesperidin) were fairly stable whereas quercetin was degraded significantly by US treatment. The types of solvent and temperature used were important factors that determined the resulting degradation reactions. The degradation rate of quercetin was highest in 80% ethanol aqueous solution and decreased with increasing temperature. Longer US durations caused increases in the extent of quercetin degradation. Liquid height, ultrasonic intensity, pulse length, and duty cycle of US affected degradation rates but did not change the nature of degradation of the flavonoids. Four types of reactions occurred simultaneously for quercetin under US treatment: oxidation, addition, polymerization, and decomposition. Eight degradation products were tentatively identified as dimer, alcohol addition, oxidation, and decomposition products.
Steroid synthesis and metabolic pathways play important roles in the pathophysiology of PCOS, but until now there have been no studies on the methylation profiles of specific genes in steroid synthesis pathways that are known to be associated with PCOS. Here we used MassARRAY quantitative methylation analysis to determine the methylation levels of each CpG site or cluster in the promoters of EPHX1, SRD5A1, and CYP11A1 in 64 peripheral blood samples. We further examined the methylation level of EPHX1 in an independent cohort consisting of 116 people. Finally, we investigated the role of EPHX1 in steroidogenesis in the KGN cell line. For SRD5A1 and CYP11A1, there was no significant difference in methylation level between patients and controls. For EPHX1, however, the methylation levels of a few consecutive CpG sites and clusters were found to be significantly associated with PCOS. The methylation levels of a number of CpG clusters or sites were significantly lower in patients than in controls in the first cohort consisting of 64 people, such as clusters 13–14 (P<0.05), 15–16 (P<0.001), and 19–24 (P<0.001) and sites CpG_53 (P<0.01) and CpG_54 (P<0.05). Among differentiated methylation sites and clusters, the methylation levels of the CpG cluster 13–14 and CpG cluster 19–24 in PCOS patients were significantly lower than in controls in the second cohort of 116 people (P<0.05 for both). In addition, knockdown and overexpression experiments in KGN cells showed that EPHX1 can regulate estradiol concentrations, and this indicates a role for EPHX1 in steroidogenesis. Our study has demonstrated that methylation of the EPHX1 promoter might be associated with PCOS. This study provides direct evidence that methylation plays an important role in PCOS and demonstrates a novel role for EPHX1 in female reproduction.
Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is increasing rapidly worldwide. Previous animal models were established to study consequences of offspring after exposure to severe intrauterine hyperglycemia. In this study we are aiming to characterize the blood pressure levels and renal function of male offspring obtained from diabetic mothers with moderate hyperglycemia.
We established a rat model with moderate hyperglycemia after pregnancy by a single intraperitoneal injection of streptozotocin (STZ). The male offspring were studied and fed with either normal diet or high salt diet after weaning. Arterial pressure and renal function were measured.
Arterial pressure of male offspring increased from 12 weeks by exposure to intrauterine moderate hyperglycemia. At 20 weeks, high salt diet accelerated the blood pressure on diabetic offspring compared to diabetic offspring fed with normal diet. We found offspring exposed to intrauterine moderate hyperglycemia had a trend to have a higher creatinine clearance rate and significant increase of urinary N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase (NAG) excretion indicating an early stage of nephropathy progression.
We observed the high blood pressure level and early renal dysfunction of male offspring obtained from diabetic mothers with moderate hyperglycemia. Furthermore, we investigated high salt diet after weaning on offspring exposed to intrauterine hyperglycemia could exacerbate the blood pressure and renal function. Renin angiotensin system (RAS) plays an important role in hypertension pathogenesis and altered gene expression of RAS components in offspring with in utero hyperglycemia exposure may account for the programmed hypertension. Therefore, our study provides evidence “fetal programming” of maternal diabetes is critical for metabolic disease development.
Diffraction enhanced imaging (DEI) is a synchrotron radiation X-ray phase-contrast imaging technique that can better reveal the microstructure of biological soft tissues than conventional X-rays. The aim of this study is to investigate the angio-architectural changes of the liver during fibrosis, cirrhosis and its subsequent regression by applying synchrotron radiation based DEI.
DEI experiments were performed at the 4W1A station of Beijing Synchrotron Radiation Facility. Twenty-four Sprague-Dawley rats were induced with liver fibrosis by carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) for up to 10 weeks, after which spontaneous regression started and continued until week 30. Quantitative analysis of the DEI images yielded the mean vascular density and intercapillary distance, which was then re-confirmed by immunohistochemical analysis of CD34.
Based on the DEI results, the mean vascular density was 1.4-fold higher in fibrotic rats (at week 6) and 2-fold higher in cirrhotic rats (at week 10) compared with the control (p<0.05). Accordingly, the intercapillary distance decreased to 563.89±243.35 µm in fibrotic rats and 392.90±92.68 µm in cirrhotic rats compared with 673.85±214.16µm in the control (p<0.05). During fibrosis regression at week 30, vascular density was 0.7-fold lower and intercapillary distance increased to 548.60±210.94 µm as compared with cirrhotic rats (p<0.05).In parallel to the DEI results, immunohistochemical analysis of CD34 showed similar changes.
Synchrotron-based DEI can conduct radiological as well as pathological analysis. Our results are consistent with previous reports indicating that angiogenesis is directly proportional to fibrosis progression. Furthermore, by clarifying the vascular characteristics of liver diseases, DEI reveals that cirrhosis cannot fully reverse during fibrosis regression.
Saturated fatty acids, such as palmitic and stearic acid, cause detrimental effects in endothelial cells (ECs) and have been suggested to contribute to macrophage accumulation in adipose tissue and the vascular wall in states of obesity and insulin resistance. Long-chain fatty acids are believed to require conversion into acyl-CoA derivatives to exert most of their detrimental effects, a reaction catalyzed by acyl-CoA synthetases (ACSL). The objective of this study was to investigate the role of ACSL1, an ACSL isoform previously shown to mediate inflammatory effects in myeloid cells, in regulating EC responses to a saturated fatty acid-rich environment in vitro and in vivo.
Methods and Results
Saturated fatty acids caused increased inflammatory activation, ER stress, and apoptosis in mouse microvascular ECs. Forced ACSL1 overexpression exacerbated the effects of saturated fatty acids on apoptosis and ER stress. However, endothelial ACSL1-deficiency did not protect against the effects of saturated fatty acids in vitro, nor did it protect insulin resistant mice fed a saturated fatty acid-rich diet from macrophage adipose tissue accumulation or increased aortic adhesion molecule expression.
Endothelial ACSL1 is not required for inflammatory and apoptotic effects of a saturated fatty acid-rich environment.
Acyl-CoA synthetase; Apoptosis; Endothelium; Inflammation
The purpose of this study was to identify miRNAs and genes involved in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) radioresistance, and explore the underlying mechanisms in the development of radioresistance.
We used microarrays to compare the differences of both miRNA and mRNA expression profiles in the radioresistant NPC CNE2-IR and radiosensitive NPC CNE2 cells, applied qRT-PCR to confirm the reliability of microarray data, adopted databases prediction and anticorrelated analysis of miRNA and mRNA expression to identify the miRNA target genes, and employed bioinformatics tools to examine the functions and pathways in which miRNA target genes are involved, and construct a miRNA-target gene regulatory network. We further investigated the roles of miRNA-23a and its target gene IL-8 in the NPC radioresistance.
The main findings were fourfold: (1) fifteen differential miRNAs and 372 differential mRNAs were identified, and the reliability of microarray data was validated for randomly selected eight miRNAs and nine genes; (2) 174 miRNA target were identified, and most of their functions and regulating pathways were related to tumor therapeutic resistance; (3) a posttranscriptional regulatory network including 375 miRNA-target gene pairs was constructed, in which the ten genes were coregulated by the six miRNAs; (4) IL-8 was a direct target of miRNA-23a, the expression levels of IL-8 were elevated in the radioresistant NPC tissues and showed inverse correlation with miRNA-23a expression, and genetic upregulation of miRNA-23a and antibody neutralization of secretory IL-8 could reduce NPC cells radioresistance.
We identified fifteen differential miRNAs and 372 differential mRNAs in the radioresistant NPC cells, constructed a posttranscriptional regulatory network including 375 miRNA-target gene pairs, discovered the ten target genes coregulated by the six miRNAs, and validated that downregulated miRNA-23a was involved in NPC radioresistance through directly targeting IL-8. Our data form a basis for further investigating the mechanisms of NPC radioresistance.
DNA microarrays have gained wide use in biomedical research by simultaneously monitoring the expression levels of a large number of genes. The successful implementation of DNA microarray technologies requires the development of methods and techniques for the fabrication of microarrays, the selection of probes to represent genes, the quantification of hybridization, and data analysis. In this paper, we concentrate on probes that are either spotted or synthesized on the glass slides through several aspects: sources of probes, the criteria for selecting probes, tools available for probe selections, and probes used in commercial microarray chips. We then provide a detailed review of one type of DNA microarray: Affymetrix GeneChips, discuss the need to re-annotate probes, review different methods for regrouping probes into probe sets, and compare various redefinitions through public available datasets.
Microarray; GeneChips; Probes; Probe sets; Review
Finding effective drugs to treat fungal infections has important clinical significance based on high mortality rates, especially in an immunodeficient population. Traditional antifungal drugs with single targets have been reported to cause serious side effects and drug resistance. Nowadays, however, drug combinations, particularly with respect to synergistic interaction, have attracted the attention of researchers. In fact, synergistic drug combinations could simultaneously affect multiple subpopulations, targets, and diseases. Therefore, a strategy that employs synergistic antifungal drug combinations could eliminate the limitations noted above and offer the opportunity to explore this emerging bioactive chemical space. However, it is first necessary to build a powerful database in order to facilitate the analysis of drug combinations. To address this gap in our knowledge, we have built the first Antifungal Synergistic Drug Combination Database (ASDCD), including previously published synergistic antifungal drug combinations, chemical structures, targets, target-related signaling pathways, indications, and other pertinent data. Its current version includes 210 antifungal synergistic drug combinations and 1225 drug-target interactions, involving 105 individual drugs from more than 12,000 references. ASDCD is freely available at http://ASDCD.amss.ac.cn.
With advances in the development of various disciplines, there is a need to decipher bio-behavioural mechanisms via interdisciplinary means. Here, we present an interdisciplinary study of the role of silica nanoparticles (SiO2-NPs) in disturbing the neural behaviours of zebrafish and a possible physiological mechanism for this phenomenon. We used adult zebrafish as an animal model to evaluate the roles of size (15-nm and 50-nm) and concentration (300 μg/mL and 1000 μg/mL) in SiO2-NP neurotoxicity via behavioural and physiological analyses. With the aid of video tracking and data mining, we detected changes in behavioural phenotypes. We found that compared with 50-nm nanosilica, 15-nm SiO2-NPs produced greater significant changes in advanced cognitive neurobehavioural patterns (colour preference) and caused potentially Parkinson's disease-like behaviour. Analyses at the tissue, cell and molecular levels corroborated the behavioural results, demonstrating that nanosilica acted on the retina and dopaminergic (DA) neurons to change colour preference and to cause potentially Parkinson's disease-like behaviour.
Brown cotton fiber is the major raw material for colored cotton industry. Previous studies have showed that the brown pigments in cotton fiber belong to proanthocyanidins (PAs). To clarify the details of PA biosynthesis pathway in brown cotton fiber, gene expression profiles in developing brown and white fibers were compared via digital gene expression profiling and qRT-PCR. Compared to white cotton fiber, all steps from phenylalanine to PA monomers (flavan-3-ols) were significantly up-regulated in brown fiber. Liquid chromatography mass spectrometry analyses showed that most of free flavan-3-ols in brown fiber were in 2, 3-trans form (gallocatechin and catechin), and the main units of polymeric PAs were trihydroxylated on B ring. Consistent with monomeric composition, the transcript levels of flavonoid 3′, 5′-hydroxylase and leucoanthocyanidin reductase in cotton fiber were much higher than their competing enzymes acting on the same substrates (dihydroflavonol 4-reductase and anthocyanidin synthase, respectively). Taken together, our data revealed a detailed PA biosynthesis pathway wholly activated in brown cotton fiber, and demonstrated that flavonoid 3′, 5′-hydroxylase and leucoanthocyanidin reductase represented the primary flow of PA biosynthesis in cotton fiber.
The zearalenone (ZEA) monoclonal antibody (mAb) 2D3, one of the highest sensitivity antibodies, was developed. Based on this mAb, it was established of an immunoaffinity column (IAC) coupled with an indirect competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (icELISA). After optimization, the icELISA allowed an IC50 against ZEA of 0.02 µg L−1. The mAb 2D3 exhibited a high recognition of ZEA (100%) and β-zearalenol (β-ZOL, 88.2%). Its cross-reactivity with α-zearalenol (α-ZOL) and β-zearalanol (β-ZAL) were found to be 4.4% and 4.6%, respectively. The IAC-icELISA method was employed to analyze ZEA contamination in food samples, compared with high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The spiked assay for ZEA demonstrated the considerable recoveries for IAC-icELISA (83–93%) and HPLC (94–108%) methods. Results showed that the mAb 2D3 and IAC-icELISA method posed potential applications in sensitively determination of ZEA in maize.
Endometrial cancer (EC) is the most common gynecological malignancy in women and is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. Estrogenic stimulation significantly increases endometrial cell proliferation, and both insulin resistance and hyperinsulinemia are associated with the development of EC in women. It has long been known that insulin resistance occurs in women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and/or obesity, but one important unanswered question is whether the insulin resistance associated with PCOS and obesity is part of the etiology of the initiation and development of EC. Therefore, research efforts to understand the common and specific underlying endometrial responses to insulin resistance in women with PCOS and obesity could provide further therapeutic options for early endometrial carcinoma.
PCOS; obesity; insulin resistance; estrogen; IGF-1; endometrial carcinoma
Amorphous carbon is one of the most lubricious materials known, but the mechanism is not well understood. It is counterintuitive that such a strong covalent solid could exhibit exceptional lubricity. A prevailing view is that lubricity of amorphous carbon results from chemical passivation of dangling bonds on surfaces. Here we show instead that lubricity arises from shear induced strain localization, which, instead of homogeneous deformation, dominates the shearing process. Shear localization is characterized by covalent bond reorientation, phase transformation and structural ordering preferentially in a localized region, namely tribolayer, resulting in shear weakening. We further demonstrate an anomalous pressure induced transition from stick-slip friction to continuous sliding with ultralow friction, due to gradual clustering and layering of graphitic sheets in the tribolayer. The proposed shear localization mechanism sheds light on the mechanism of superlubricity, and would enrich our understanding of lubrication mechanism of a wide variety of amorphous materials.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a state of altered steroid hormone production and activity. Chronic estrogen exposure or lack of progesterone due to ovarian dysfunction can result in endometrial hyperplasia and carcinoma. A key contributor to our understanding of progesterone as a critical regulator for normal uterine function has been the elucidation of progesterone receptor (PR) expression, regulation, and signaling pathways. Several human studies indicate that PR-mediated signaling pathways in the nucleus are associated with progesterone resistance in women with PCOS. The aim of this review is to provide an overview of endometrial progesterone resistance in women with PCOS; to present the PR structure, its different isoforms, and their expression in the endometrium; to illustrate the possible regulation of PR and PR-mediated signaling in progesterone resistance in women with PCOS; and to discuss current clinical treatments for atypical endometrial hyperplasia and endometrial carcinoma in women with PCOS and accompanying progesterone resistance.
Progesterone resistance; Progesterone receptor isoforms; Endometrium; PCOS
Patients with colorectal cancer (CRC) often develop liver metastases, in which case surgery is considered the only potentially curative treatment option. However, liver surgery is associated with a risk of ischemia-reperfusion (IR) injury, which is thought to promote the growth of colorectal liver metastases. The influence of IR-induced tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) elevation in the process still is unknown. To investigate the role of TNF-α in the growth of pre-existing micrometastases in the liver following IR, we used a mouse model of colorectal liver metastases. In this model, mice received IR treatment seven days after intrasplenic injections of colorectal CT26 cells. Prior to IR treatment, either TNF-α blocker Enbrel or low-dose TNF-α, which could inhibit IR-induced TNF-α elevation, was administered by intraperitoneal injection.
Hepatic IR treatment significantly promoted CT26 tumor growth in the liver, but either Enbrel or low-dose TNF-α pretreatment reversed this trend. Further studies showed that the CT26 + IR group prominently increased the levels of ALT and AST, liver necrosis, inflammatory infiltration and the expressions of hepatic IL-6, MMP9 and E-selectin compared to those of CT26 group. Inhibition of TNF-α elevation remarkably attenuated the increases of these liver inflammatory damage indicators and tumor-promoting factors.
These findings suggested that inhibition of TNF-α elevation delayed the IR-enhanced outgrowth of colorectal liver metastases by reducing IR-induced inflammatory damage and the formation of tumor-promoting microenvironments. Both Enbrel and low-dose TNF-α represented the potential therapeutic approaches for the protection of colorectal liver metastatic patients against IR injury-induced growth of liver micrometastases foci.
Colorectal cancer; Liver metastases; Ischemia-reperfusion; TNF-α; Enbrel
Acute kidney injury in patients with acute pancreatitis carries a poor prognosis. Hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) is characterized by non-immune hemolytic anemia, thrombocytopenia, and renal failure caused by platelet thrombi in the microcirculation of the kidney, and though rare in adults it is associated with high mortality and a high rate of chronic renal failure.
Herein, we report a case of alcohol-induced acute pancreatitis in a 38-year-old Chinese female complicated by HUS. Her renal function progressively deteriorated in 2 days, and daily continuous renal replacement therapy (CRRT) was thus performed for a total of 13 treatments. She also received intermittent transfusions of fresh frozen plasma. Her renal failure was successfully managed, with subsequent return of normal renal function. She was discharged 1 month after admission and follow-up at 3 months revealed normal urea and creatinine.
CRRT was shown to be useful for the treatment of HUS following acute pancreatitis. Prior case reports and our case should remind clinicians that HUS is a possible complication of acute pancreatitis. This study highlights the importance of early diagnosis and prompt initiation of CRRT to prevent mortality and improve outcomes.
Acute pancreatitis; Acute renal failure; Continuous renal replacement therapy; Hemolytic-uremic syndrome
Serum pepsinogen (PG) levels are valuable in the diagnosis of gastric diseases. However, PG levels are affected by many factors such as the area and race. This study aimed to investigate serum PG levels in patients with different gastric diseases who were Chinese Han people in Hunan Province, midsouth China.
A total of 248 gastric disease patients and 34 healthy controls were enrolled. The patients included those with non-atrophic and chronic atrophic gastritis, gastric and duodenal ulcer, early and advanced gastric cancer. Serum PG I and II levels were detected by Biohit ELISA kit (Finland), and PG I/II ratio was calculated. Differences in patients with gastric disease and healthy controls were analyzed using paired t-test.
Compared with controls, patients with early and advanced gastric cancer had a significantly lower PG I level and PG I/II ratio (p <0.005). In contrast, patients with gastric and duodenal ulcer had a significantly higher PG I level (p <0.005). Compared with atrophic gastritis patients, patients with early and advanced carcinoma of the stomach had a significantly lower PG I/II ratio (p < 0.001). Combination of the cut-off levels of PG I (70 μg/L) and PG I/II ratio (6) provided 62.1% sensitivity of and 94.2% specificity for the diagnosis of gastric cancer.
Decreased PG I level and PG I/II ratio are risk factors for gastric cancer. Combined use of serum PG I level and PG I/II ratio may help the early diagnosis of gastric cancer.
Gastritis; Stomach; Gastric cancer; Peptic ulcer; Serum pepsinogen
Hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) are maintained in a tightly regulated bone microenvironment constituted by a rich milieu of cells. Bone cells such as osteoblasts are associated with niche maintenance as regulators of the endosteal microenvironment. Bone remodeling also plays a role in HSC mobilization although it is poorly defined. The effects of zoledronic acid (ZA), a potent bisphosphonate that inhibits bone resorption, were investigated on bone marrow cell populations focusing on HSCs, and the endosteal and vascular niches in bone. ZA treatment significantly increased bone volume and HSCs in both young and adult mice (4 week and 4 month old, respectively). ZA increased vessel numbers with no overall change in vascular volume in bones of young and had no effect on vasculature in adult mice. Since both young and adult mice had increased HSCs and bone mass with differing vasculature responses, this suggests that ZA indirectly supports HSCs via the osteoblastic niche and not the vascular niche. Additionally, gene expression in Lin- cells demonstrated increased expression of self-renewal-related genes Bmi1 and Ink4a suggesting a role of ZA in the modulation of cell commitment and differentiation toward a long-term self-renewing cell. Genes that support the osteoblastic niche, BMP2 and BMP6 were also augmented in ZA treated mice. In conclusion, ZA-induced HSC expansion occurs independent of the vascular niche via indirect modulation of the osteoblastic niche.
HEMATOPOIETIC STEM CELLS; NICHE; BONE VASCULATURE; BLOOD VESSELS; BISPHOSPHONATE; ZOLEDRONIC ACID
The feasibility of Shutter-Speed Model (SSM) (Dynamic-Contrast-Enhanced) DCE-MRI pharmacokinetic analyses for prostate cancer detection was investigated in a pre-biopsy patient cohort. Differences of results from the fast exchange regime-allowed (FXR-a) SSM version and the fast-exchange-limit-constrained (FXL-c) standard model (SM) are demonstrated. Though the spatial information is more limited, post-DCE-MRI biopsy specimens were also examined. The MRI results were correlated with the biopsy pathology findings. Of all the model parameters, ROI-averaged Ktrans difference [ΔKtrans ≡ Ktrans(FXR-a) − Ktrans(FXL-c)] or 2D Ktrans(FXR-a) vs. kep(FXR-a) values were found to provide the most useful biomarkers for malignant/benign prostate tissue discrimination [at 100% sensitivity for a population of 13, the specificity is 88%] and disease burden determination. [The best specificity for the FXL-c analysis is 67%, with the 2D plot.] Ktrans and kep are each measures of passive trans-capillary contrast reagent transfer rate constants. Parameter value increases with shutter-speed model (relative to standard model) analysis are larger in malignant foci than in normal appearing glandular tissue. Pathology analyses verify the SSM(FXR-a) promise for prostate cancer detection. Parametric mapping may further improve pharmacokinetic biomarker performance.