The rhizobium-legume symbiosis is a model system for studying mutualistic interactions between bacteria and eukaryotes. Sinorhizobium sp. NGR234 is distinguished by its ability to form either indeterminate nodules or determinate nodules with diverse legumes. Here, we presented a high-resolution RNA-seq transcriptomic analysis of NGR234 bacteroids in indeterminate nodules of Leucaena leucocephala and determinate nodules of Vigna unguiculata. In contrast to exponentially growing free-living bacteria, non-growing bacteroids from both legumes recruited several common cellular functions such as cbb3 oxidase, thiamine biosynthesis, nitrate reduction pathway (NO-producing), succinate metabolism, PHB (poly-3-hydroxybutyrate) biosynthesis and phosphate/phosphonate transporters. However, different transcription profiles between bacteroids from two legumes were also uncovered for genes involved in the biosynthesis of exopolysaccharides, lipopolysaccharides, T3SS (type three secretion system) and effector proteins, cytochrome bd ubiquinol oxidase, PQQ (pyrroloquinoline quinone), cytochrome c550, pseudoazurin, biotin, phasins and glycolate oxidase, and in the metabolism of glutamate and phenylalanine. Noteworthy were the distinct expression patterns of genes encoding phasins, which are thought to be involved in regulating the surface/volume ratio of PHB granules. These patterns are in good agreement with the observed granule size difference between bacteroids from L. leucocephala and V. unguiculata.
Genomic ANI (Average Nucleotide Identity) has been found to be able to replace DNA-DNA hybridization in prokaryote taxonomy. The ANI of each of the core genes that has a phylogeny congruent with the reference species tree of rhizobia was compared to the genomic ANI. This allowed us to identify three housekeeping genes (SMc00019-truA-thrA) whose ANI reflected the intraspecies and interspecies genomic ANI among rhizobial strains, revealing an ANI gap (≥2%) between the inter- and intra-species comparisons. The intraspecies (96%) and interspecies (94%) ANI boundaries calculated from three genes (SMc00019-truA-thrA) provided a criterion for bacterial species definition and confirmed 621/629 of known interspecies relationships within Bradyrhizobium, Mesorhizobium, Sinorhizobium and Rhizobium. Some widely studied strains should be renamed. The SMc00019-truA-thrA ANI also correlates well with the genomic ANI of strains in Agrobacterium, Methylobacterium, Ralstonia, Rhodopseudomonas, Cupriavidus and Burkholderia, suggesting their wide applicability in other bacteria.
As the putative center of origin for soybean and the second largest region of soybean production in China, the North China Plain covers temperate and subtropical regions with diverse soil characteristics. However, the soybean rhizobia in this plain have not been sufficiently studied. To investigate the biodiversity and biogeography of soybean rhizobia in this plain, a total of 309 isolates of symbiotic bacteria from the soybean nodules collected from 16 sampling sites were studied by molecular characterization. These isolates were classified into 10 genospecies belonging to the genera Sinorhizobium and Bradyrhizobium, including four novel groups, with S. fredii (68.28%) as the dominant group. The phylogeny of symbiotic genes nodC and nifH defined four lineages among the isolates associated with Sinorhizobium fredii, Bradyrhizobium elkanii, B. japonicum, and B. yuanmingense, demonstrating the different origins of symbiotic genes and their coevolution with the chromosome. The possible lateral transfer of symbiotic genes was detected in several cases. The association between soil factors (available N, P, and K and pH) and the distribution of genospecies suggest clear biogeographic patterns: Sinorhizobium spp. were superdominant in sampling sites with alkaline-saline soils, while Bradyrhizobium spp. were more abundant in neutral soils. This study clarified the biodiversity and biogeography of soybean rhizobia in the North China Plain.
Methadone maintenance treatment (MMT) has been available in Guangdong province, China since 2006. This study aims to estimate the prevalence levels of HIV, Hepatitis C (HCV), Tuberculosis (TB) and their co-infections and associated demographic and risk behaviours among MMT entrants.
A total of 2296 drug users at the time of their MMT enrolment were recruited from four clinics during 2006-2011. Participants’ demographic characteristics, infection status and self-reported high-risk drug-use and sexual behaviours were surveyed. Log-linear contingency analysis was employed to investigate the demographic and behavioural differences between gender and drug-user type, while multivariate regression analysis was used to identify the associated factors of HIV, HCV and TB infections.
Female drug users demonstrate significantly higher frequency of daily drug consumption (Log-linear contingency analysis, G2=10.86, p=0.013) and higher proportion of having had sex in the past three months (G2=30.22, p<0.001) than their male counterparts. Among injecting drug users, females also inject (χ2=16.15, p=0.001) and share syringes (χ2=13.24, p=0.004) more frequently than males. Prevalence of HIV, HCV and TB among MMT entrants are 6.3%, 78.7% and 4.4% respectively. Co-infections of HIV/HCV, HIV/TB, HCV/TB and HIV/HCV/TB reportedly infect 5.6%, 0.5%, 3.8% and 0.3% of study participants. Infection risks of HIV, HCV and TB are consistently associated with increasing length of drug use, injecting drugs, financial dependence and reduced sexual activities.
Injecting drug use is the major contributing factor in prevalence levels of HIV, HCV and TB among MMT entrants. Female drug users are more disadvantaged in their social status and risk-taking in their drug use behaviours than males.
Sirtuins are a highly conserved family of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+)-dependent protein lysine modifying enzymes with deacetylase, adenosine diphosphateribosyltransferase and other deacylase activities. Mammals have seven sirtuins, namely SIRT1-7. They are key regulators for a wide variety of cellular and physiological processes such as cell proliferation, differentiation, DNA damage and stress response, genome stability, cell survival, metabolism, energy homeostasis, organ development, aging, and cancer. Here we present an extensive literature review of the roles of mammalian sirtuins, particularly SIRT1 as that is the most studied sirtuin, in human epithelial, neuronal, hematopoietic, and mesenchymal malignancies, covering breast, prostate, lung, thyroid, liver, colon, gastric, pancreatic, ovarian, and cervical cancers, tumors of the central nervous system, leukemia and lymphoma, and soft tissue sarcomas. Collective evidence suggests sirtuins are involved in both promoting and suppressing tumorigenesis depending on cellular and molecular contexts. We discuss the potential use of sirtuin modulators, especially sirtuin inhibitors, in cancer treatment.
sirtuin; cancer; sirtuin modulator; deacetylation; acetylation
To analyze whether urine output and urinalysis results are predictive of survival and neurologic outcomes in patients with non-traumatic out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA).
Information was obtained from 1,340 patients with non-traumatic OHCA who had achieved a sustained return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC). Factors that were associated with survival in the post-resuscitative period were evaluated. The association between urine output and fluid challenge in the early resuscitative period was analyzed and compared between the survivors and the non-survivors. The results of the initial urinalysis, including the presence of proteinuria and other findings, were used to evaluate the severity of vascular protein leakage and survival. The association between proteinuria and the neurologic outcomes of the survivors was also analyzed. The clinical features of capillary leakage were examined during the post-resuscitative period.
Of the 1,340 patients, 312 survived. A greater urine output was associated with a higher chance of survival. The initial urine output increased in proportion to the amount of fluid that was administered during early resuscitation in the emergency department for the survivors but not for the non-survivors (p<0.05). In the initial urinalysis, proteinuria was strongly associated with survival, and severe proteinuria indicated significantly poorer neurologic outcomes (p<0.05 for both comparisons). Proteinuria was associated with a risk of developing signs of capillary leakage, including body mass index gain and pitting edema (both p<0.001).
The severity of proteinuria during the early post-resuscitative period was predictive of survival.
Chromium (VI) [Cr(VI)], a ubiquitous environmental carcinogen, is generally believed to induce mainly mutagenic binary and ternary Cr(III)–deoxyguanosine (dG)-DNA adducts in human cells. However, both adenine (A) and guanine (G) mutations are found in the p53 gene in Cr exposure-related lung cancer. Using UvrABC nuclease and formamidopyrimidine glycosylase (Fpg), and ligation-mediated PCR methods, we mapped the distribution of bulky DNA adducts (BDA) and oxidative DNA damage (ODD) in the p53 gene in Cr(VI)-treated human lung cells. We found that both BDA and ODD formed at 2ʹ-deoxyadenosine (dA) and dG bases. To understand the causes for these Cr-induced DNA damages, we mapped the distribution of BDA adducts and ODD in the p53 gene DNA fragments induced by Cr(III), Cr(VI) and Cr(V), the three major cellular Cr forms. We found that (i) dA at –CA- is a major Cr(VI) binding site followed by -GG- and –G-. Cr(VI) does not bind to –GGG-, (ii) Cr(VI)–DNA binding specificity is distinctly different from the Cr(III)–DNA binding in which –GGG- and –GG- are preferential sites, (iii) Cr(V) binding sites include all of Cr(VI) and Cr(III)–DNA binding sites and (iv) Cr(VI) and Cr(V) induce Fpg-sensitive sites at –G-. Together, these results suggest that Cr(VI) induction of BDA and ODD at dA and dG residues is through Cr(V) intermediate. We propose that these Cr(VI)-induced BDA and ODD contribute to mutagenesis of the p53 gene that leads to lung carcinogenesis.
The objectives of this study were to: 1) determine if a genetic algorithm in combination with morphing software can be used to evolve more attractive faces; and 2) evaluate whether this approach can be used as a tool to define or identify the attributes of the ideal attractive face.
Basic research study incorporating focus group evaluations.
Digital images were acquired of 250 female volunteers (18–25 y). Randomly selected images were used to produce a parent generation (P) of 30 synthetic faces using morphing software. Then, a focus group of 17 trained volunteers (18–25 y) scored each face on an attractiveness scale ranging from 1 (unattractive) to 10 (attractive). A genetic algorithm was used to select 30 new pairs from the parent generation, and these were morphed using software to produce a new first generation (F1) of faces. The F1 faces were scored by the focus group, and the process was repeated for a total of four iterations of the algorithm. The algorithm mimics natural selection by using the attractiveness score as the selection pressure; the more attractive faces are more likely to morph. All five generations (P-F4) were then scored by three focus groups: a) surgeons (n = 12), b) cosmetology students (n = 44), and c) undergraduate students (n = 44). Morphometric measurements were made of 33 specific features on each of the 150 synthetic faces, and correlated with attractiveness scores using univariate and multivariate analysis.
The average facial attractiveness scores increased with each generation and were 3.66 (+0.60), 4.59 (±0.73), 5.50 (±0.62), 6.23 (±0.31), and 6.39 (±0.24) for P and F1–F4 generations, respectively. Histograms of attractiveness score distributions show a significant shift in the skew of each curve toward more attractive faces with each generation. Univariate analysis identified nasal width, eyebrow arch height, and lip thickness as being significantly correlated with attractiveness scores. Multivariate analysis identified a similar collection of morphometric measures. No correlation with more commonly accepted measures such as the length facial thirds or fifths were identified. When images are examined as a montage (by generation), clear distinct trends are identified: oval shaped faces, distinct arched eyebrows, and full lips predominate. Faces evolve to approximate the guidelines suggested by classical canon. F3 and F4 generation faces look profoundly similar. The statistical and qualitative analysis indicates that the algorithm and methodology succeeds in generating successively more attractive faces.
The use of genetic algorithms in combination with a morphing software and traditional focus-group derived attractiveness scores can be used to evolve attractive synthetic faces. We have demonstrated that the evolution of attractive faces can be mimicked in software. Genetic algorithms and morphing provide a robust alternative to traditional approaches rooted in comparing attractiveness scores with a series of morphometric measurements in human subjects.
Facial Beauty; attractiveness; plastic surgery; morphing; genetic algorithm
Bivariate mixture modeling was used to analyze joint population distributions of transferrin saturation (TS) and serum ferritin concentration (SF) measured in the Hemochromatosis and Iron Overload Screening (HEIRS) Study. Four components (C1, C2, C3, and C4) with successively age-adjusted increasing means for TS and SF were identified in data from 26,832 African Americans, 12,620 Asians, 12,264 Hispanics, and 43,254 whites. The largest component, C2, had normal mean TS (21% to 26% for women, 29% to 30% for men) and SF (43–82 μg/L for women, 165–242 μg/L for men), which consisted of component proportions greater than 0.59 for women and greater than 0.68 for men. C3 and C4 had progressively greater mean values for TS and SF with progressively lesser component proportions. C1 had mean TS values less than 16% for women (<20% for men) and SF values less than 28 μg/L for women (<47 μg/L for men). Compared with C2, adjusted odds of iron deficiency were significantly greater in C1 (14.9–47.5 for women, 60.6–3530 for men), adjusted odds of liver disease were significantly greater in C3 and C4 for African-American women and all men, and adjusted odds of any HFE mutation were increased in C3 (1.4–1.8 for women, 1.2–1.9 for men) and in C4 for Hispanic and white women (1.5 and 5.2, respectively) and men (2.8 and 4.7, respectively). Joint mixture modeling identifies a component with lesser SF and TS at risk for iron deficiency and 2 components with greater SF and TS at risk for liver disease or HFE mutations. This approach can identify populations in which hereditary or acquired factors influence metabolism measurement.
Primary upper endoscopy (EGD) and transabdominal US (TUS) are often performed in patients with upper abdominal pain.
Primary: Determine whether the combination of EGD and EUS was equivalent to EGD plus TUS in the diagnostic evaluation of upper abdominal pain. Secondary: Compare EUS versus TUS in detecting abdominal lesions, and compare EGD by using an oblique-viewing echoendoscope versus the standard, forward-viewing endoscope in detecting mucosal lesions.
Prospective, paired design.
Six academic endoscopy centers.
This study involved patients with upper abdominal pain referred for endoscopy.
All patients had EGD, EUS, and TUS. The EGD was done using both an oblique-viewing echoendoscope and the standard, forward-viewing endoscope (randomized order) by two separate endoscopists in a blinded fashion, followed by EUS. TUS was performed within 4 weeks of EGD/EUS, also in a blinded fashion. Follow-up: telephone interviews and chart reviews.
Main Outcome Measurements
Diagnose possible etiology of upper abdominal pain and detect clinically significant lesions.
A diagnosis of the etiology of upper abdominal pain was made in 66 of 172 patients (38%). The diagnostic rate was 42 of 66 patients (64%) for EGD plus EUS versus 41 of 66 patients (62%) for EGD plus TUS, which was statistically equivalent (McNemar test; P = .27). One hundred ninety-eight lesions were diagnosed with either EUS or TUS. EUS was superior to TUS for visualizing the pancreas (P < .0001) and for diagnosing chronic pancreatitis (P = .03). Two biliary stones were detected only by EUS. Two hundred fifty-one mucosal lesions were similarly diagnosed with EGD with either the standard, forward-viewing endoscope or the oblique-viewing echoendoscope (kappa = 0.48 [95% CI, .43-.54]). EGD with the standard, forward-viewing endoscope was preferred for biopsies.
No cost analysis.
The combination of EGD with EUS is equivalent to EGD plus TUS for diagnosing a potential etiology of upper abdominal pain. EUS is superior to TUS for detecting chronic pancreatitis. EGD combined with EUS should be considered in the first-line diagnostic evaluation of patients with upper abdominal pain.
AIM: To study the diagnostic value of immunoglobulin heavy chain (IgH) and T-cell receptor γ (TCR-γ) gene monoclonal rearrangements in primary gastric lymphoma (PGL).
METHODS: A total of 48 patients with suspected PGL at our hospital were prospectively enrolled in this study from January 2009 to December 2011. The patients were divided into three groups (a PGL group, a gastric linitis plastica group, and a benign gastric ulcer group) based on the pathological results (gastric mucosal specimens obtained by endoscopy or surgery) and follow-up. Endoscopic ultrasonography (EUS) and EUS-guided biopsy were performed in all the patients. The tissue specimens were used for histopathological examination and for IgH and TCR-γ gene rearrangement polymerase chain reaction analyses.
RESULTS: EUS and EUS-guided biopsy were successfully performed in all 48 patients. In the PGL group (n = 21), monoclonal IgH gene rearrangements were detected in 14 (66.7%) patients. A positive result for each set of primers was found in 12 (57.1%), 8 (38.1%), and 4 (19.0%) cases using FR1/JH, FR2/JH, and FR3/JH primers, respectively. Overall, 12 (75%) patients with mucosal-associated lymphoid tissue lymphoma (n = 16) and 2 (40%) patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (n = 5) were positive for monoclonal IgH gene rearrangements. No patients in the gastric linitis plastica group (n = 17) and only one (10%) patient in the benign gastric ulcer group (n = 10) were positive for a monoclonal IgH gene rearrangement. No TCR-γ gene monoclonal rearrangements were detected. The sensitivity of monoclonal IgH gene rearrangements was 66.7% for a PGL diagnosis, and the specificity was 96.4%. In the PGL group, 8 (100%) patients with stage IIE PGL (n = 8) and 6 (46.1%) patients with stage IE PGL (n = 13) were positive for monoclonal IgH gene rearrangements.
CONCLUSION: IgH gene rearrangements may be associated with PGL staging and may be useful for the diagnosis of PGL and for differentiating between PGL and gastric linitis plastica.
Immunoglobulin heavy chain; T-cell receptor γ; Gene rearrangement; Primary gastric lymphoma; Endoscopic biopsy specimen
How often elevated serum ferritin in primary-care patients reflects increased iron stores (normally 0.8 g in men, 0.4 g in women) is not known. The Hereditary Hemochromatosis and Iron Overload Screening (HEIRS) study screened 101,168 primary-care participants (44% Caucasians, 27% African-Americans, 14% Asians/Pacific Islanders, 13% Hispanics, 2% others). Follow-up clinical evaluation was performed in 302 of 333 HFE C282Y homozygotes regardless of iron measures and 1,375 of 1,920 nonhomozygotes with serum ferritin >300 μg/L (men), >200 μg/L (women) and transferrin saturation >50% (men), >45% (women). Quantitative phlebotomy was conducted in 122 of 175 C282Y homozygotes and 122 of 1,102 nonhomozygotes with non-transfusional serum ferritin elevation at evaluation. The estimated prevalence in the Caucasian population of C282Y homozygotes with serum ferritin >900 μg/L at evaluation was 20 per 10,000 men and 4 per 10,000 women; this constellation was predictive of iron stores >4 g in men and >2 g in women. The estimated prevalence per 10,000 of non-C282Y homozygotes with serum ferritin >900 μg/L at evaluation was 7 among Caucasians, 13 among Hispanics, 20 among African Americans, and 38 among Asians and Pacific Islanders, and this constellation was predictive of iron stores >2 g but <4 g. In conclusion, serum ferritin >900 μg/L after initial elevations of both serum ferritin and transferrin saturation is predictive of mildly increased iron stores in multiple ethnic populations regardless of HFE genotype. Serum ferritin >900 μg/L in male C282Y homozygotes is predictive of moderately increased iron stores.
Angiogenesis, the formation of blood vessels, is necessary for a tumor to grow, but when angiogenesis first appears in the progression of breast ductal carcinomas is unknown. To determine when this occurs, the authors examined microvessel density (MVD) by CD31 and CD105 immunostaining in normal ducts, 32 cases of usual hyperplasia, 19 cases of atypical hyperplasia, and 29 cases of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS). Simple hyperplasia had a 22-fold greater MVD than normal ducts (P < .0001). An increase during the progression of ductal changes was highly significant (P < .0001). To determine a possible mechanism, immunohistochemistry for vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) was evaluated. VEGF staining intensity of ductal epithelium increased during the progression from normal to hyperplastic to DCIS. This study shows that the first significant increase in angiogenesis occurs very early in the evolution of ductal proliferations as ductal cells become hyperplastic.
breast; angiogenesis; hyperplasia; ductal carcinoma in situ; CD31; CD105; vascular endothelial growth factor; microvessel density
P bodies are cytoplasmic RNA granules containing the Dcp1-Dcp2 decapping enzymes where mRNA decay can occur. Here, we describe the characterization of P bodies in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe. Most information on the property and function of P bodies stems from studies in the distantly related budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and Edc3 was identified as a scaffold protein required for P-body assembly. However, we found that, unlike in S. cerevisiae, fission yeast Edc3 was dispensable for P-body formation. Pdc1, a novel partner of the fission yeast decapping enzyme, with a limited similarity to plant Edc4/Varicose that is required for the assembly of P bodies, was identified (tandem affinity purification–matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization tandem mass spectrometry [TAP-MALDI MS/MS]). Pdc1 interacts with Dcp2 through its C terminus and contains a coiled-coil region for self-interaction to mediate P-body formation. In line with the model that Pdc1 cross-bridges different proteins, additional interactions can be demonstrated with components such as Edc3 and Ste13. Although Pdc1 is not required for the interaction between Dcp1 and Dcp2, our data suggest that Pdc1 acts as a functional homologue of Edc4, a third component of the decapping enzymes that is thought to be absent from fungi. Together, these results highlight the diverse P-body protein compositions between different species and might help to provide insight into their evolutionary paths.
Orchidaceae, one of the largest angiosperm families, has significant commercial value. Isolation of genes involved in orchid floral development and morphogenesis, scent production, and colouration will advance knowledge of orchid flower formation and facilitate breeding new varieties to increase the commercial value. With high-throughput virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS), this study identified five transcription factors involved in various aspects of flower morphogenesis in the orchid Phalaenopsis equestris. These genes are PeMADS1, PeMADS7, PeHB, PebHLH, and PeZIP. Silencing PeMADS1 and PebHLH resulted in reduced flower size together with a pelaloid column containing petal-like epidermal cells and alterations of epidermal cell arrangement in lip lateral lobes, respectively. Silencing PeMADS7, PeHB, and PeZIP alone resulted in abortion of the first three fully developed flower buds of an inflorescence, which indicates the roles of the genes in late flower development. Furthermore, double silencing PeMADS1 and PeMADS6, C- and B-class MADS-box genes, respectively, produced a combinatorial phenotype with two genes cloned in separate vectors. Both PeMADS1 and PeMADS6 are required to ensure the normal development of the lip and column as well as the cuticle formation on the floral epidermal cell surface. Thus, VIGS allows for unravelling the interaction between two classes of MADS transcription factors for dictating orchid floral morphogenesis.
Cymbidium mosaic virus; PebHLH; PeMADS1; PeMADS6; Phalaenopsis; virus-induced gene silencing.
Neuritogenesis is a process through which neurons generate their widespread axon and dendrites. The microtubule cytoskeleton plays crucial roles throughout neuritogenesis. Our previous study indicated that the amount of type II protein kinase A (PKA) on microtubules significantly increased upon neuronal differentiation and neuritogenesis. While the overall pool of PKA has been shown to participate in various neuronal processes, the function of microtubule-associated PKA during neuritogenesis remains largely unknown. First, we showed that PKA localized to microtubule-based region in different neurons. Since PKA is essential for various cellular functions, globally inhibiting PKA activity will causes a wide variety of phenotypes in neurons. To examine the function of microtubule-associated PKA without changing the total PKA level, we utilized the neuron-specific PKA anchoring protein MAP2. Overexpressing the dominant negative MAP2 construct that binds to type II PKA but cannot bind to the microtubule cytoskeleton in dissociated hippocampal neurons removed PKA from microtubules and resulted in compromised neurite elongation. In addition, we demonstrated that the association of PKA with microtubules can also enhance cell protrusion using the non-neuronal P19 cells. Overexpressing a MAP2 deletion construct which does not target PKA to the microtubule cytoskeleton caused non-neuronal cells to generate shorter cell protrusions than control cells overexpressing wild-type MAP2 that anchors PKA to microtubules. Finally, we demonstrated that the ability of microtubule-associated PKA to promote protrusion elongation was independent of MAP2 phosphorylation. This suggests other proteins in close proximity to the microtubule cytoskeleton are involved in this process.
Background. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) may present with gastroesophageal and extraesophageal symptoms. Currently, the frequencies of gastroesophageal and extragastroesophageal symptoms in Asian patients with different categories of GERD remain unclear. Aim. To investigate the frequencies of gastroesophageal and extragastroesophageal symptoms in patients with mild erosive esophagitis, severe erosive esophagitis, and Barrett's esophagus of GERD. Methods. The symptoms of symptomatic subjects with (1) Los Angeles grade A/B erosive esophagitis, (2) Los Angeles grade C/D erosive esophagitis, and (3) Barrett's esophagus proven by endoscopy were prospectively assessed by a standard questionnaire for gastroesophageal and extragastroesophageal symptoms. The frequencies of the symptoms were compared by Chi-square test. Result. Six hundred and twenty-five patients (LA grade A/B: 534 patients; LA grade C/D: 37 patients; Barrett's esophagus: 54 patients) were assessed for gastroesophageal and extragastroesophageal symptoms. Patients with Los Angeles grade A/B erosive esophagitis had higher frequencies of symptoms including epigastric pain, epigastric fullness, dysphagia, and throat cleaning than patients with Los Angeles grade C/D erosive esophagitis. Patients with Los Angeles grade A/B erosive esophagitis also had higher frequencies of symptoms including acid regurgitation, epigastric acidity, regurgitation of food, nausea, vomiting, epigastric fullness, dysphagia, foreign body sensation of throat, throat cleaning, and cough than patients with Barrett's esophagus. Conclusion. The frequencies of some esophageal and extraesophageal symptoms in patients with Los Angeles grade A/B erosive esophagitis were higher than those in patients with Los Angeles grade C/D erosive esophagitis and Barrett's esophagus. The causes of different symptom profiles in different categories of GERD patients merit further investigations.
Obese patients may be at a greater risk for acute kidney injury (AKI) with the use of certain antimicrobial agents that are dosed by weight. Current preclinical models of AKI utilize the male rat within a narrow weight range that limits extrapolation of the generated results. We evaluated the pharmacokinetics and AKI potential of gentamicin in 14-week-old diet-induced obesity-prone (n = 40) and obesity-resistant (n = 40) rats of both sexes. Single daily doses of gentamicin (12.5, 18.75, or 25 mg/kg of body weight) or saline (control) were administered intraperitoneally for 14 doses. Blood samples were collected after doses 1, 7, and 14, assayed by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS), and analyzed using a nonparametric population pharmacokinetic approach for gentamicin. Urine was collected after doses 1, 3, and 5 and assayed for kidney injury molecule 1 (KIM-1) and neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) and normalized to creatinine (Cr) values. Histology was performed on all animals, and the degree of proximal tubular injury was graded. The mean (minimum, maximum) weight of the rats was 330 (136, 580) g. NGAL/Cr predicted AKI better than did KIM-1/Cr and was detectable in male rats after dose 1 and in obesity-prone female rats after dose 5. Proximal tubular injury by histology was significantly higher in male than in female rats. A significant relationship between the gentamicin area under the curve from zero to 24 hours (AUC0–24) estimates and the maximum NGAL/Cr ratio was observed. This preclinical model has the potential to aid with dose extrapolation for body size and improve assessment of the toxicology potential of antimicrobials in development.
Ion-exchange chromatography (IEX) relies on electrostatic interactions between the adsorbent and the adsorbate, and is used extensively in protein purification. Conventional IEX utilizes ligands that are singly charged and randomly dispersed over the adsorbent, creating a heterogeneous distribution of potential adsorption sites. Clustered-charge ion exchangers exhibit higher affinity, capacity, and selectivity than their dispersed-charge counterparts of the same total charge density. In the present work, we monitored the transport behavior of an anionic protein near clustered-charge adsorbent surfaces using Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy. We can resolve protein free diffusion, hindered diffusion and association with bare glass, agarose-coated, and agarose-clustered peptide surfaces, demonstrating that this method can be used to understand and ultimately optimize clustered charge adsorbent and other surface interactions at the molecular scale.
Ion-Exchange Chromatography; Protein Adsorption; Diffusion; Anion Exchange Matrix; Clustered-Charge Ion Exchange Adsorbent
To identify risk factors of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) in pediatric intensive care unit (PICU).
PubMed, Ovid, Web of Science, the Cochrane Library and references of retrieved articles were searched without language limitation. Pooled odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated by using both the Mantel-Haenszel fixed-effect and the DerSimonian-Laird random-effects models.
Out of the 205 initially retrieved articles, 9 papers were included. All 4,564 patients were enrolled, including 213 patients with VAP and 4,351 patients without VAP. Among fourteen risk factors, six factors had statistical significances. Risk factors of VAP and its value of OR were as follows: genetic syndrome (OR =2.04; 95% CI: 1.08-3.86), steroids (OR =1.87; 95% CI: 1.07-3.27), reintubation or self-extubation (OR =3.16; 95% CI: 2.10-4.74), bloodstream infection (OR =4.42; 95% CI: 2.12-9.22), prior antibiotic therapy (OR =2.89; 95% CI: 1.41-5.94), bronchoscopy (OR =4.48; 95% CI: 2.31-8.71).
Special methods of preventions should be taken in the light of risk factors of VAP in PICU so as to decrease the rate.
Risk factors; ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP); pediatric intensive care unit (PICU); meta-analysis
The mechanisms by which microRNAs (miRNAs) affect cell fate decisions remain poorly understood. Herein, we report that miR-200a can suppress the differentiation of mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells into endoderm and mesoderm. Interestingly, miR-200a directly targets growth factor receptor-bound protein 2 (Grb2), which is a key adaptor in the Erk signaling pathway. Furthermore, high levels of miR-200a dramatically decrease Grb2 levels and suppress the appearance of mesoderm and endoderm lineages in embryoid body formation, as well as suppressing the activation of Erk. Finally, Grb2 supplementation significantly rescues the miR-200a-induced layer-formation bias and the Erk suppression. Collectively, our results demonstrate that miR-200a plays critical roles in ES cell lineage commitment by directly regulating Grb2 expression and Erk signaling.
Background and Study Aims. The association between Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) and chronic spontaneous urticaria (CSU) remains controversial. This study explored the role of H. pylori in CSU among different virulent genotypes patients. Patients and Methods. Patients infected by H. pylori were sorted into two groups as group A (with CSU) and group B (without CSU). The tissue materials were taken via endoscopy for polymerase chain reaction study to determine virulence factors. After H. pylori eradication therapy, the eradication rate and response of urticaria were evaluated by using C13-UBT and a three-point scale (complete remission, partial remission, or no improvement). Results. The results were comparable between patients of groups A and B in terms of H. pylori infection rates and eradication rate. Longitudinal follow-up of 23.5 months showed complete remission of urticaria in 63.6% but no improvement in 36.4% of the patients after H. pylori eradication. H. pylori infected patients with different virulence factors such as cytotoxin-associated gene A, vacuolating cytotoxin gene A signal region and middle region have similar remission rates for CSU. Conclusions. Current study suggests that H. pylori may play a role in the development and disease course of CSU but may be irrelevant to different virulent genotypes.
Hunter syndrome (mucopolysaccharidosis type II (MPS II)) is a rare metabolic disease that can severely compromise health, well-being and life expectancy. Little evidence has been published on the impact of MPS II on health-related quality of life (HRQL). The objective of this study was to describe this impact using the Hunter Syndrome-Functional Outcomes for Clinical Understanding Scale (HS-FOCUS) questionnaire and a range of standard validated questionnaires previously used in paediatric populations.
Clinical and demographic characteristics collected in a clinical trial and responses to four HRQL questionnaires completed both by patients and parents prior to enzyme replacement treatment were used. The association between questionnaire scores and clinical function parameters were tested using Spearman rank-order correlations. Results were compared to scores in other paediatric populations with chronic conditions obtained through a targeted literature search of published studies.
Overall, 96 male patients with MPS II and their parents were enrolled in the trial. All parents completed the questionnaires and 53 patients above 12 years old also completed the self-reported versions. Parents’ and patients’ responses were analysed separately and results were very similar. Dysfunction according to the HS-FOCUS and the CHAQ was most pronounced in the physical function domains. Very low scores were reported in the Self Esteem and Family Cohesion domains in the CHQ and HUI3 disutility values indicated a moderate impact. Scores reported by patients and their parents were consistently lower than scores in the other paediatric populations identified (except the parent-reported Behaviour score); and considerably lower than normative values.
This study describes the impact on HRQL in patients with MPS II and provides a broader context by comparing it with that of other chronic paediatric diseases. Physical function and the ability to perform day-to-day activities were the most affected areas and a considerable impact on the psychological aspects of patients’ HRQL was also found, with a higher level of impairment across most dimensions (particularly Pain and Self Esteem) than that of other paediatric populations. Such humanistic data provide increasingly important support for establishing priorities for health care spending, and as a component of health economic analysis.
Hunter syndrome; Mucopolysaccharidosis type II; Lysosomal storage disease; Patient-reported outcomes; Health-related quality of life
Depression in older adults deteriorates quality of life and increases morbidity, mortality, and medical expenses. Medicine and social policy should work together to decrease this burden. Existing prevention studies are often based on time-consuming psychotherapies, which therefore are not feasible for a wide application at the community level. Postcard interventions have been shown to be effective for patients after hospitalization for major depression, drug overdose, or self-harm. This paper describes the protocol of a pragmatic, randomized controlled trial designed to examine the efficacy of a postcard intervention for depression among community-dwelling individuals aged 65 years or older.
This is a pragmatic, non-blinded, parallel comparison, randomized controlled trial using Zelen’s design in a community setting. Participants will include community-dwelling older adults (aged 65 years or older) with limited social support (indicated by eating meals alone) and with symptoms of depression (scoring 4 or higher on the 15-item Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS)). The intervention will consist of sending postcards with handwritten messages and seasonal reports from a historical city to participants once a month for eight consecutive months. Self-addressed, stamped envelopes will be enclosed to facilitate non-obligatory replies. Primary outcomes will be changes in the GDS scores that are administered to all elderly inhabitants of the community every year as part of annual health checks. Secondary outcomes include quality of life as measured by a visual analogue scale, and self-rated basic and advanced activities of daily living. We will also examine the subjective sense of effectiveness of the intervention, recollection of the number of intervention mailings received, and the number of mailed replies as the index of the acceptability of the postcard intervention. The time × group interaction for two consecutive years will be analyzed using a generalized linear mixed model. To detect an effect size of 0.5 at alpha error of 0.05 and statistical power of 0.80, 63 participants per group are required. Based on an estimated consent and dropout rate of 70%, a total of 180 subjects will be recruited.
Depression; Non-clinical intervention; Prevention; Community; Older adults