Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) are a promising cell source for cartilage regenerative medicine; however, the methods for chondrocyte induction from iPSC are currently developing and not yet sufficient for clinical application. Here, we report the establishment of a fluorescent indicator system for monitoring chondrogenic differentiation from iPSC to simplify screening for effective factors that induce chondrocytes from iPSC. We generated iPSC from embryonic fibroblasts of Col2a1-EGFP transgenic mice by retroviral transduction of Oct4, Sox2, Klf4, and c-Myc. Among the 30 clones of Col2a1-EGFP iPSC we established, two clones showed high expression levels of embryonic stem cell (ESC) marker genes, similar to control ESC. A teratoma formation assay showed that the two clones were pluripotent and differentiated into cell types from all three germ layers. The fluorescent signal was observed during chondrogenic differentiation of the two clones concomitant with the increase in chondrocyte marker expression. In conclusion, Col2a1-EGFP iPSC are useful for monitoring chondrogenic differentiation and will contribute to research in cartilage regenerative medicine.
Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most prevalent form of arthritis and accounts for substantial morbidity and disability, particularly in the elderly. It is characterized by changes in joint structure including degeneration of the articular cartilage and its etiology is multifactorial with a strong postulated genetic component. We performed a meta-analysis of four genome-wide association (GWA) studies of 2,371 knee OA cases and 35,909 controls in Caucasian populations. Replication of the top hits was attempted with data from additional ten replication datasets. With a cumulative sample size of 6,709 cases and 44,439 controls, we identified one genome-wide significant locus on chromosome 7q22 for knee OA (rs4730250, p-value=9.2×10−9), thereby confirming its role as a susceptibility locus for OA. The associated signal is located within a large (500kb) linkage disequilibrium (LD) block that contains six genes; PRKAR2B (protein kinase, cAMP-dependent, regulatory, type II, beta), HPB1 (HMG-box transcription factor 1), COG5 (component of oligomeric golgi complex 5), GPR22 (G protein-coupled receptor 22), DUS4L (dihydrouridine synthase 4-like), and BCAP29 (the B-cell receptor-associated protein 29). Gene expression analyses of the (six) genes in primary cells derived from different joint tissues confirmed expression of all the genes in the joint environment.
Individual skeletal elements of the vertebrate limbs arise through a segmentation process introducing joints in specific locations. However, the molecular pathways controlling joint formation and subsequent joint maintenance are largely unknown. In this study, we focused on SOX11, and its contribution to the regulation of GDF5, a secreted signal necessary for proper joint formation and postnatal joint homeostasis.
Sox11 is initially expressed broadly in the murine cartilage condensations at early stages of skeletal development, but its expression is specifically increased in the forming joint interzone as is forms. SOX11 overexpression can directly activate GDF5 expression both in vitro and in micromass cell cultures prepared from chick limb buds. Conserved SOX family binding sites are present in the 5’ UTR region of the GDF5 gene and we show SOX11 can specifically bind to one of them. While misexpression of Sox11 in developing chick limbs through RCAS virus infection does not induce Gdf5 expression in ectopic locations, it does enhance its expression. To explore the roles of Sox11 in joint homeostasis, we analyzed adult knee joints in an osteoarthritis mouse model where the medial meniscus and the medial collateral ligament were removed. We also analyzed knee joints from human subjects who underwent total knee replacement surgery. We find that SOX11 is mainly expressed in the weight-bearing areas of knee joints, and its expression is decreased in degraded cartilage during progression of knee osteoarthritis in both mice and humans.
This work implicates SOX11 as a potential regulator of GDF5 expression in joint maintenance and suggests a possible role in the pathogenesis of osteoarthritis.
SOX11; GDF5; Joint maintenance; Articular cartilage
Objectives: The epithelial-mesenchymal-transition (EMT) is an important step in the invasion and metastasis of cancer. A critical molecular feature of this process is the downregulation of E-cadherin expression, which is mainly controlled by Snail-related zinc-finger transcription factors (Snail and Slug). The aim of this study was to evaluate the prognostic impact of EMT-related protein (E-cadherin, Snail and Slug) expression in endometrial cancer.
Methods: An immunohistochemical analysis was conducted using tissue microarray samples of 354 primary tumors and 30 metastases of endometrial carcinomas, and the relationship between protein expression, clinicopathological features and outcomes were investigated.
Results: Reduced E-cadherin was seen in 39.8% of primary tumors. Reduced E-cadherin was seen in 19.5%, 40.8% and 72.7% of G1, G2 and G3 endometrioid adenocarcinomas, respectively. The nuclear expression of Snail and Slug were positive in 16.9% and 3.7% of primary tumors, respectively. EMT status, which was represented by both reduced E-cadherin and nuclear expression of Snail, was significantly associated with histological type, FIGO stage, myometrial invasion, positive peritoneal cytology and patient survival (p < 0.01). There was no difference in the rates of EMT status between the primary tumors and metastases. A multivariate analysis showed that EMT-positive status was a significant predictor for both the progression-free survival and overall survival (p < 0.01).
Conclusions: These data indicate that EMT status has a prognostic impact in endometrial cancer. Therefore, the clarification and control of EMT signaling is a promising molecular targeting therapy in endometrial cancer.
epithelial-mesenchymal-transition; EMT; Snail; Slug; E-cadherin; endometrial cancer
Mature cystic teratomas (MCTs) are the most common germ cell tumors of the ovary. Malignant tranformation occurs in 1-2% of these neoplasms. Although most of the malignancies arising from MCTs are squamous cell carcinomas, adenocarcinoma of the gastrointestinal type is extremery rare. We herein present a case of adenocarcinoma of the intestinal type arising from a MCT.
A 49-year-old female underwent surgery for a left ovarian tumor. The histology of the cyst walls revealed a MCT with a few hair shafts and a squamous layer, while another part of the tumor showed adenocarcinoma of the intestinal type. Five years after surgery, she is alive without disease.
Malignant transformation; Mature cystic teratoma; Adenocarcinoma; Intestinal type
To determine whether mild cognitive impairment (MCI) increases the risk of occurrence or progression of radiographic knee osteoarthritis (KOA) in a general population.
Population-based cohort study.
Residents in mountain and seaside areas of Wakayama Prefecture, Japan.
1690 participants (596 men, 1094 women; mean age 65.2 years old) were enrolled from the large-scale cohort for the Research on Osteoarthritis (OA)/osteoporosis Against Disability (ROAD) study initiated in 2005 to investigate epidemiological features of OA in Japan. Of these, 1384 individuals (81.9%; 466 men, 918 women) completed the second survey including knee radiography 3 years later.
Primary outcome measures
Radiographic KOA was defined as Kellgren-Lawrence (KL) grade ≥ 2 using paired x-ray films. Incidence of KOA during follow-up defined on radiographs as KL grade ≥2, progression of KOA defined as a higher KL grade (either knee) at follow-up compared with baseline. MCI defined as a summary mini-mental state examination (MMSE) score ≤23. Associations between MCI and incidence or progression of KOA were analysed.
The annual cumulative incidence of KOA was 3.3%; for progression of OA it was 8.0%. On logistic regression analysis adjusted for age, gender, regional differences, body mass index, grip strength (worse side), smoking, alcohol consumption, regular exercise and history of knee injury, baseline MMSE summary score was significantly associated with the incidence of KOA (+1 MMSE score; OR 0.83, p=0.010). Baseline MCI was also significantly associated with the incidence of KOA (vs non-occurrence of KOA; OR 4.90, p=0.027). There was no significant association between MMSE scores, the presence of MCI and progression of KOA (+1 MMSE score; OR 0.96, p=0.232; vs non-progression of KOA; OR 1.38, p=0.416).
MCI significantly increases the risk of incident radiographic KOA, but not the progression of KOA.
G protein-coupled receptor 30 (GPR30) is a 7-transmembrane estrogen receptor that functions alongside traditional estrogen receptors to regulate the cellular responses to estrogen. Recent studies suggest that GPR30 expression is associated with a poor prognosis, and that this is due to the GPR30-mediated transactivation of the EGFR in breast cancer. However, the biological contribution of GPR30 in ovarian cancer remains unclear. The purpose of this study was to elucidate the relationships between GPR30 expression and the clinicopathological findings, and to determine how the signaling cascade influences the prognosis of ovarian cancer.
The expression levels of GPR30, EGFR, ERα, and ERβ were analyzed using an immunohistochemical analysis, and their correlations with the clinicopathological features were examined in 10 patients with borderline malignant tumors and 152 patients with epithelial ovarian cancer. We also examined whether GPR30 signaling activates the EGFR-Akt pathway in an ovarian cancer cell line (Caov-3) by a Western blotting analysis.
The GPR30 expression in ovarian carcinomas was significantly higher than that in borderline malignancies (p=0.0016), and was not associated with the expression of the EGFR, ERα, or ERβ. The expression of GPR30 in clear cell carcinomas was significantly lower than that in other subtypes of cancer (P <; 0.001). The expression of both GPR30 and EGFR was significantly associated with a poor prognosis in terms of the progression-free survival rate. The phosphorylation of the EGFR and Akt could be significantly enhanced by G1 (p <; 0.05) and inhibited by a Src family kinase inhibitor.
The expression of both GPR30 and EGFR is associated with a poor outcome in ovarian cancer, and GPR30 increases the phosphorylation of Akt via the EGFR in ovarian cancer cells. The regulation of GPR30 might be a potentially useful new therapeutic target in ovarian cancer.
G protein-coupled receptor 30; GPR30; 7-transmembrane estrogen receptor; EGFR; Akt; ERα; Clear cell carcinomas; Prognostic factor
Although general anesthesia is widely used in the surgical arena, the mechanisms by which general anesthetics act remain unclear. We previously described alterations in gene expression ratios in hepatic tissue taken from rats treated with anesthetics. Consequently, it is considered that anesthetics influence liver metabolism. Thus, the goal of this study was to use pattern recognition analysis of proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectra to visualize changes in liver metabolic phenotypes in response to widely used intravenous anesthetics (propofol and dexmedetomidine) and inhalational anesthetics (sevoflurane and isoflurane).
Rats were randomized into 13 groups (n = 6 in each group), and each group received one of following agents: propofol, dexmedetomidine, sevoflurane, isoflurane, or no anesthetic (control group). The liver was directly removed from rats immediately after or 24 h or 48 h after a 6-h period of anesthesia. Hydrophilic compounds were extracted from the liver and were analyzed with proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. All spectral data were processed and analyzed by principal component analysis for comparison of metabolite profiles.
Data were visualized by plotting principal component (PC) scores. In the plots, each point represents an individual sample. Each group was clustered separately on the plots, and the PC scores of the propofol group were clearly distinct from those of the control group and other anesthetic groups. The difference in PC scores was more pronounced immediately after completion of anesthesia when compared with 24 or 48 h after completion of anesthesia. Although the effect of intravenous anesthetics on the liver dissipated over time, the effect of inhalational anesthetics persisted.
Propofol, dexmedetomidine, sevoflurane and isoflurane exert different effects on liver metabolism. In particular, liver metabolism was markedly altered after exposure to propofol. The effect of anesthesia on the liver under propofol or dexmedetomidine resolved rapidly when compared with the effect under sevoflurane or isoflurane.
Adequate modeling of light propagation in the head is important to predict the
sensitivity of NIRS signal and the spatial sensitivity profile of
source-detector pairs. The 3D realistic head models of which the geometry is
based upon the anatomical images acquired by magnetic resonance imaging and
x-ray computed tomography are constructed to investigate the influence of the
frontal sinus on the NIRS signal and spatial sensitivity. Light propagation in
the head is strongly affected by the presence of the frontal sinus. The light
tends to propagate around the frontal sinus. The influence of the frontal sinus
on the sensitivity of the NIRS signal to the brain activation is not consistent
and depends on the depth of the frontal sinus, the optical properties of the
superficial tissues and the relative position between the source-detector pair
and the frontal sinus. The frontal sinus located in the shallow region of the
skull tends to reduce the sensitivity of the NIRS signal while the deep frontal
sinus can increase the sensitivity of the NIRS signal.
(170.3660) Light propagation in tissues; (170.5280) Photon migration; (170.2655) Functional monitoring and imaging
In natural synovial joints under physiologic conditions, fluid thin-film lubrication by a hydrated layer of the cartilage is essential for the smooth motion of the joints. The considerably less efficient lubrication of artificial joints of polyethylene is prone to wear, leading to osteolysis and aseptic loosening and limiting the longevity of THA. A nanometer-scale layer of poly(2-methacryloyloxyethyl phosphorylcholine) (PMPC) with cartilage-mimicking brushlike structures on a crosslinked polyethylene (CLPE) surface may provide hydrophilicity and lubricity resembling the physiologic joint surface.
We asked whether the photoirradiation time during graft polymerization would affect the density and stability of the PMPC layer and the PMPC-grafted surface would enhance the durability of artificial joints. We investigated the effect of photoirradiation time and the resultant characteristics of the PMPC layer on the durability of the CLPE.
For each of the PMPC-grafted CLPE surfaces with various photoirradiation times (six groups: 0 [untreated CLPE], 11, 23, 45, 90, and 180 minutes), 18 sample pieces (total of 108 samples) were evaluated in surface analyses, and four cups (total of 24 samples) were evaluated in a hip simulator test.
The density of the PMPC layer increased with an increase in the photoirradiation time. The hip simulator test confirmed the PMPC-grafted CLPE with a high density of the PMPC layer exhibited minimal wear as compared with the untreated CLPE. High-density PMPC grafting appears essential for maintaining the high wear resistance of the PMPC-grafted CLPE. To obtain a high-density PMPC layer, the photoirradiation time must be greater than 45 minutes.
The cartilage-mimicking, density brushlike structure of the PMPC-grafted CLPE could extend high durability to acetabular cups in THA.
Our in vitro findings suggest the wear performance of CLPE acetabular cups in THA can be improved by this approach.
RUNX2 and SP7 are essential transcription factors for osteoblast differentiation at an early stage. Although RUNX2 inhibits osteoblast differentiation at a late stage, the function of SP7 at the late stage of osteoblast differentiation is not fully elucidated. Thus, we pursued the function of SP7 in osteoblast differentiation. RUNX2 induced Sp7 expression in Runx2−/− calvarial cells. Adenoviral transfer of sh-Sp7 into primary osteoblasts reduced the expression of Alpl, Col1a1, and Bglap2 and mineralization, whereas that of Sp7 reduced Bglap2 expression and mineralization at a late stage of osteoblast differentiation. Sp7 transgenic mice under the control of 2.3 kb Col1a1 promoter showed osteopenia and woven-bone like structure in the cortical bone, which was thin and less mineralized, in a dose-dependent manner. Further, the number of processes in the osteoblasts and osteocytes was reduced. Although the osteoblast density was increased, the bone formation was reduced. The frequency of BrdU incorporation was increased in the osteoblastic cells, while the expression of Col1a1, Spp1, Ibsp, and Bglap2 was reduced. Further, the osteopenia in Sp7 or Runx2 transgenic mice was worsened in Sp7/Runx2 double transgenic mice and the expression of Col1a1 and Bglap2 was reduced. The expression of Sp7 and Runx2 was not increased in Runx2 and Sp7 transgenic mice, respectively. The expression of endogenous Sp7 was increased in Sp7 transgenic mice and Sp7-transduced cells; the introduction of Sp7 activated and sh-Sp7 inhibited Sp7 promoter; and ChIP assay showed the binding of endogenous SP7 in the proximal region of Sp7 promoter. These findings suggest that SP7 and RUNX2 inhibit osteoblast differentiation at a late stage in a manner independent of RUNX2 and SP7, respectively, and SP7 positively regulates its own promoter.
To address the need for standardization of osteoarthritis (OA) phenotypes by examining the effect of heterogeneity among symptomatic (SOA) and radiographic osteoarthritis (ROA) phenotypes.
Descriptions of OA phenotypes of the 28 studies involved in the TREAT-OA consortium were collected. To investigate whether different OA definitions result in different association results, we created hip OA definitions used within the consortium in the Rotterdam Study-I and tested the association of hip OA with gender, age and BMI using one-way ANOVA. For radiographic OA, we standardized the hip, knee and hand ROA definitions and calculated prevalence's of ROA before and after standardization in 9 cohort studies. This procedure could only be performed in cohort studies and standardization of SOA definitions was not feasible at this moment.
In this consortium, all studies with symptomatic OA phenotypes (knee, hip and hand) used a different definition and/or assessment of OA status. For knee, hip and hand radiographic OA 5, 4 and 7 different definitions were used, respectively. Different hip OA definitions do lead to different association results. For example, we showed in the Rotterdam Study-I that hip OA defined as “at least definite JSN and one definite osteophyte” was not associated with gender (p=0.22), but defined as “at least one definite osteophyte” was significantly associated with gender (p=3×10−9). Therefore, a standardization process was undertaken for radiographic OA definitions. Before standardization a wide range of ROA prevalence's was observed in the 9 cohorts studied. After standardization the range in prevalence of knee and hip ROA was small. Standardization of SOA phenotypes was not possible due to the case-control design of the studies.
Phenotype definitions influence the prevalence of OA and association with clinical variables. ROA phenotypes within the TREAT-OA consortium were standardized to reduce heterogeneity and improve power in future genetics studies.
Bcl2 subfamily proteins, including Bcl2 and Bcl-XL, inhibit apoptosis. As osteoblast apoptosis is in part responsible for osteoporosis in sex steroid deficiency, glucocorticoid excess, and aging, bone loss might be inhibited by the upregulation of Bcl2; however, the effects of Bcl2 overexpression on osteoblast differentiation and bone development and maintenance have not been fully investigated. To investigate these issues, we established two lines of osteoblast-specific BCL2 transgenic mice. In BCL2 transgenic mice, bone volume was increased at 6 weeks of age but not at 10 weeks of age compared with wild-type mice. The numbers of osteoblasts and osteocytes increased, but osteoid thickness and the bone formation rate were reduced in BCL2 transgenic mice with high expression at 10 weeks of age. The number of BrdU-positive cells was increased but that of TUNEL-positive cells was unaltered at 2 and 6 weeks of age. Osteoblast differentiation was inhibited, as shown by reduced Col1a1 and osteocalcin expression. Osteoblast differentiation of calvarial cells from BCL2 transgenic mice also fell in vitro. Overexpression of BCL2 in primary osteoblasts had no effect on osteoclastogenesis in co-culture with bone marrow cells. Unexpectedly, overexpression of BCL2 in osteoblasts eventually caused osteocyte apoptosis. Osteocytes, which had a reduced number of processes, gradually died with apoptotic structural alterations and the expression of apoptosis-related molecules, and dead osteocytes accumulated in cortical bone. These findings indicate that overexpression of BCL2 in osteoblasts inhibits osteoblast differentiation, reduces osteocyte processes, and causes osteocyte apoptosis.
Leg pain/numbness and gait disturbance, two major symptoms in the lower extremities of lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS), are generally expected to be alleviated by decompression surgery. However, the paucity of information available to patients before surgery about specific predictors has resulted in some of them being dissatisfied with the surgical outcome when the major symptoms remain after the procedure. This prospective, observational study sought to identify the predictors of the outcome of a decompression surgery: modified fenestration with restorative spinoplasty. Of 109 consecutive LSS patients who underwent the decompression surgery, 89 (56 males and 33 females) completed the 2 year follow-up. Both leg pain/numbness and gait disturbance determined by the Japanese Orthopedic Association scoring system were significantly improved at 2 years after surgery compared to those preoperative, regardless of potential predictors including gender, preoperative presence of resting numbness in the leg, drop foot, cauda equina syndrome, degenerative spinal deformity or myelographic filling defect, or the number of decompressed levels. However, 27 (30.3%) and 13 (14.6%) patients showed residual leg pain/numbness and gait disturbance, respectively. Among the variables examined, the preoperative resting numbness was associated with residual leg pain/numbness and gait disturbance, and the preoperative drop foot was associated with residual gait disturbance, which was confirmed by logistic regression analysis after adjustment for age and gender. This is the first study to identify specific predictors for these two remaining major symptoms of LSS after decompression surgery, and consideration could be given to including this in the informed consent.
Lumbar spinal stenosis; Decompression surgery; Outcome; Predictor
A retrospective study was performed to determine the sensitivities of the pyramidal signs in patients with cervical myelopathy, focusing on those with increased signal intensity (ISI) in T2-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The relationship between prevalence of the pyramidal signs and the severity of myelopathy was investigated. We reviewed the records of 275 patients with cervical myelopathy who underwent surgery. Of these, 143 patients were excluded from this study due to comorbidities that might complicate neurological findings. The MR images of the remaining 132 patients were evaluated in a blinded fashion. The neurological findings of 120 patients with ISI (90 men and 30 women; mean age 61 years) were reviewed for hyperreflexia (patellar tendon reflex), ankle clonus, Hoffmann reflex, and Babinski sign. To assess the severity of myelopathy, the motor function scores of the upper and lower extremities for cervical myelopathy set by the Japanese Orthopaedic Association (m-JOA score) were used. The most prevalent signs were hyperreflexia (94%), Hoffmann reflex (81%), Babinski sign (53%), and ankle clonus (35%). Babinski sign (P < 0.001), ankle clonus, and Hoffmann reflex showed significant association with the lower m-JOA score. Conversely, no association was found with the upper m-JOA score. In patients with cervical myelopathy, hyperreflexia showed the highest sensitivity followed by Hoffmann reflex, Babinski sign, and ankle clonus. The prevalence of the pyramidal signs correlated with increasing severity of myelopathy. Considering their low sensitivity in patients with mild disability, the pyramidal signs may have limited utility in early diagnosis of cervical myelopathy.
Neurological examination; Babinski sign; Hoffmann reflex; Clonus; Pyramidal sign; Long tract sign
Our previous study has shown that prenatal exposure to X-ray irradiation causes cerebral hypo-perfusion during the postnatal development of central nervous system (CNS). However, the source of the hypo-perfusion and its impact on the CNS development remains unclear. The present study developed an automatic analysis method to determine the mean red blood cell (RBC) speed through single microvessels imaged with two-photon microscopy in the cerebral cortex of rats prenatally exposed to X-ray irradiation (1.5 Gy).
We obtained a mean RBC speed (0.9±0.6 mm/sec) that ranged from 0.2 to 4.4 mm/sec from 121 vessels in the radiation-exposed rats, which was about 40% lower than that of normal rats that were not exposed. These results were then compared with the conventional method for monitoring microvascular perfusion using the arteriovenous transit time (AVTT) determined by tracking fluorescent markers. A significant increase in the AVTT was observed in the exposed rats (1.9±0.6 sec) as compared to the age-matched non-exposed rats (1.2±0.3 sec). The results indicate that parenchyma capillary blood velocity in the exposed rats was approximately 37% lower than in non-exposed rats.
The algorithm presented is simple and robust relative to monitoring individual RBC speeds, which is superior in terms of noise tolerance and computation time. The demonstrative results show that the method developed in this study for determining the mean RBC speed in the spatial frequency domain was consistent with the conventional transit time method.
Topotecan, a novel topoisomerase-1 inhibitor, is a drug that appears to be effective against platinum-resistant ovarian cancers. However, the molecular mechanisms by which Topotecan treatment inhibits cancer cell proliferation are unclear. We investigated whether Topotecan increases the efficacy of Cisplatin in platinum-resistant ovarian cancer models in vitro and in vivo.
Topotecan significantly inhibited Cisplatin-induced Akt activation in Caov-3 cells, but not in A2780 cells. In the presence of Topotecan, Cisplatin-induced growth inhibition and apoptosis were significantly enhanced in Caov-3 cells. Topotecan inhibited not only Cisplatin-induced Akt activation but also VEGF and HIF-1α expression. Moreover, treatment with Topotecan increased the efficacy of Cisplatin-induced growth inhibition in the intraabdominal dissemination and production of ascites in athymic nude mice inoculated with Caov-3 cells.
We used Cisplatin-resistant Caov-3 cells and Cisplatin-sensitive A2780 cells. We examined the effect of Cisplatin and Topotecan on the cell viability of Caov-3 and A2780 cells by MTS assay. We examined the Akt kinase activity, VEGF and HIF-1α expression after Cisplatin and Topotecan by a western blot analysis. Moreover, we also evaluated the effects of Cisplatin and Topotecan on the intraabdominal dissemination of ovarian cancer in vivo.
We herein demonstrated that Topotecan inhibits Akt kinase activity and VEGF transcriptional activation after Cisplatin treatment in platinum-resistant ovarian cancers. We clarified how Topotecan enhanced the clinical activity in the platinum-resistant ovarian cancer. These results provide a rationale for using Topotecan in clinical regimens aimed at molecular targeting agents in platinum-resistant ovarian cancers.
topoisomerase-1 inhibitor; ovarian cancer; platinum-resistant; PI3K/Akt cascade; apoptosis; VEGF; topotecan
Patients with interferon‐γ receptor 1 (IFNγR1) deficiency show selective susceptibility to intracellular pathogens such as mycobacteria. IFNγR1 deficiency is an inherited immunodeficiency disorder, which can be either recessive or dominant. Dominant forms of IFNγR1 deficiency are known to be associated with mutations that introduce a premature stop codon in the intracellular domain of IFNγR1. One such mutation, 818del4, is believed to be the most common type. Although these mutations are presumed to exert a dominant‐negative effect on IFNγ signal transduction, the underlying molecular mechanism is unresolved.
We characterised the 774del4 mutant of IFNγR1 using a gene‐expression system to examine the effects of this mutation on IFNγ signal transduction.
We identified a novel dominant mutation in IFNGR1, designated 774del4, which produced a truncated form of IFNγR1 in a patient with recurrent mycobacterial infections. IFNγR1 was overexpressed on the surfaces of CD14‐positive cells from the peripheral blood of this patient, and STAT1 phosphorylation in response to high doses of IFNγ was partially deficient. We expressed two truncated forms of IFNγR1, 774del4 and 818del4, in HEK 293 cells using transient transfection and found that these mutants overexpressed IFNγR1 on the cell surface because of impaired receptor stability, which resulted in a dominant‐negative effect on IFNγ signal transduction.
Like the 818del4 mutation, 774del4 produces a truncated form of IFNγR1, which has a dominant‐negative effect on IFNγ signal transduction through altered receptor stability.
congenital immunodeficiency; IFNγ receptor 1;
; mycobacterium; osteomyelitis
General anesthesia is routinely used as a surgical procedure and its safety has been endorsed by clinical outcomes; however, its effects at the molecular level have not been elucidated. General anesthetics influence glucose metabolism in the brain. However, the effects of anesthetics on brain metabolites other than those related to glucose have not been well characterized. We used a pattern recognition analysis of proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectra to visualize the changes in holistic brain metabolic phenotypes in response to the widely used intravenous anesthetic propofol and the volatile anesthetic isoflurane.
Rats were randomized into five groups (n = 7 each group). Propofol and isoflurane were administered to two groups each, for 2 or 6 h. The control group received no anesthesia. Brains were removed directly after anesthesia. Hydrophilic compounds were extracted from excised whole brains and measured by proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. All spectral data were processed and analyzed by principal component analysis for comparison of the metabolite profiles. Data were visualized by plotting principal component (PC) scores. In the plots, each point represents an individual sample. The propofol and isoflurane groups were clustered separately on the plots, and this separation was especially pronounced when comparing the 6-h groups. The PC scores of the propofol group were clearly distinct from those of the control group, particularly in the 6-h group, whereas the difference in PC scores was more subtle in the isoflurane group and control groups.
The results of the present study showed that propofol and isoflurane exerted differential effects on holistic brain metabolism under anesthesia.
Since sleep apnea is a risk factor for high mortality of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients, this study examined the prevalence in RA patients with occipitocervical lesions, and the associated radiographic features. Twenty-nine RA patients requiring surgery for progressive myelopathy due to occipitocervical lesions (3 males, 26 females, average age 65 years) were preoperatively evaluated. Twenty-three (79%) had sleep apnea defined as apnea–hypopnea index >5 events per hour measured by a portable monitoring device, and all of them were classified as the obstructive type. Among gender, age, bone mass index (BMI), and radiographic parameters related to occipitocervical lesions: atlantodental interval (ADI), cervical angles (O/C1, C1/2, and C2/6), and cervical lengths (O–C2 and O–C6), the ADI and cervical lengths were shown to be significantly associated with the presence of sleep apnea by parametric statistical analysis. Since there were positive correlations between the ADI and cervical lengths by Pearson’s test, we performed a multivariate logistic regression analysis after adjustment for confounding factors and found that small ADI was the principle parameter associated with sleep apnea. We therefore conclude that the prevalence of sleep apnea is higher than that in a general RA population that was reported previously, and believe that occipitocervical lesions are an independent risk factor for this condition. Small ADI and short neck, secondary to the vertical translocation by RA, may cause obstructive sleep apnea, probably through mechanical or neurological collapse of the upper airway.
Sleep apnea; Rheumatoid arthritis; Occipitocervical lesion
Although transition from proliferation to hypertrophic differentiation of chondrocytes is a crucial step for endochondral ossification in physiological skeletal growth and pathological disorders like osteoarthritis, the underlying mechanism remains an enigma. This study investigated the role of the transcription factor CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein β (C/EBPβ) in chondrocytes during endochondral ossification.
Mouse embryos with homozygous deficiency in C/EBPβ (C/EBPβ−/−) exhibited dwarfism with elongated proliferative zone and delayed chondrocyte hypertrophy in the growth plate cartilage. In the cultures of primary C/EBPβ−/− chondrocytes, cell proliferation was enhanced while hypertrophic differentiation was suppressed. Contrarily, retroviral overexpression of C/EBPβ in chondrocytes suppressed the proliferation and enhanced the hypertrophy, suggesting the cell cycle arrest by C/EBPβ. In fact, a DNA cell cycle histogram revealed that the C/EBPβ overexpression caused accumulation of cells in the G0/G1 fraction. Among cell cycle factors, microarray and real-time RT-PCR analyses have identified the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p57Kip2 as the transcriptional target of C/EBPβ. p57Kip2 was co-localized with C/EBPβ in late proliferative and pre-hypertrophic chondrocytes of the mouse growth plate, which was decreased by the C/EBPβ deficiency. Luciferase-reporter and electrophoretic mobility shift assays identified the core responsive element of C/EBPβ in the p57Kip2 promoter between −150 and −130 bp region containing a putative C/EBP motif. The knockdown of p57Kip2 by the siRNA inhibited the C/EBPβ-induced chondrocyte hypertrophy. Finally, when we created the experimental osteoarthritis model by inducing instability in the knee joints of adult mice of wild-type and C/EBPβ+/− littermates, the C/EBPβ insufficiency caused resistance to joint cartilage destruction.
C/EBPβ transactivates p57Kip2 to promote transition from proliferation to hypertrophic differentiation of chondrocytes during endochondral ossification, suggesting that the C/EBPβ-p57Kip2 signal would be a therapeutic target of skeletal disorders like growth retardation and osteoarthritis.
A defect in Klotho gene expression in mice accelerates the degeneration of multiple age-sensitive traits. Here, we show that overexpression of Klotho in mice extends life span. Klotho protein functions as a circulating hormone that binds to a cell-surface receptor and represses intracellular signals of insulin and insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1), an evolutionarily conserved mechanism for extending life span. Alleviation of aging-like phenotypes in Klotho-deficient mice was observed by perturbing insulin and IGF1 signaling, suggesting that Klotho-mediated inhibition of insulin and IGF1 signaling contributes to its anti-aging properties. Klotho protein may function as an anti-aging hormone in mammals.
cGMP-dependent protein kinase II (cGKII; encoded by PRKG2) is a serine/threonine kinase that is critical for skeletal growth in mammals; in mice, cGKII deficiency results in dwarfism. Using radiographic analysis, we determined that this growth defect was a consequence of an elongated growth plate and impaired chondrocyte hypertrophy. To investigate the mechanism of cGKII-mediated chondrocyte hypertrophy, we performed a kinase substrate array and identified glycogen synthase kinase–3β (GSK-3β; encoded by Gsk3b) as a principal phosphorylation target of cGKII. In cultured mouse chondrocytes, phosphorylation-mediated inhibition of GSK-3β was associated with enhanced hypertrophic differentiation. Furthermore, cGKII induction of chondrocyte hypertrophy was suppressed by cotransfection with a phosphorylation-deficient mutant of GSK-3β. Analyses of mice with compound deficiencies in both protein kinases (Prkg2–/–Gsk3b+/–) demonstrated that the growth retardation and elongated growth plate associated with cGKII deficiency were partially rescued by haploinsufficiency of Gsk3b. We found that β-catenin levels decreased in Prkg2–/– mice, while overexpression of cGKII increased the accumulation and transactivation function of β-catenin in mouse chondroprogenitor ATDC5 cells. This effect was blocked by coexpression of phosphorylation-deficient GSK-3β. These data indicate that hypertrophic differentiation of growth plate chondrocytes during skeletal growth is promoted by phosphorylation and inactivation of GSK-3β by cGKII.