Beta-catenin is a key nuclear effector of Wnt signaling which could be antagonized by dickkopf-1(DKK1). Beta-catenin and DKK1 are involved in a variety of biological processes; however, their expression in the placenta with severe preeclampsia (PE) has not been elucidated. This study was aimed to detect the localization and compare the expression of beta-catenin and DKK1 in normal and preeclamptic placenta.
Sixty pregnant women who underwent cesarean section were enrolled in this study, including 30 healthy pregnant women in the control group and 30 preeclamptic women in the severe PE group. Real-time polymerase chain reaction (real-time-PCR) and western blot were employed to detect the beta-catenin and DKK1 mRNA and protein expression levels, respectively, and their locations were evaluated by immunohistochemistry (IHC).
Our results indicated that beta-catenin and DKK1 were expressed predominantly in the syncytiotrophoblast and the extravillous trophoblast (EVT). The beta-catenin mRNA and protein expressions were significantly decreased, whereas the DKK1 significantly increased in preeclamptic placental tissues compared to normal placental controls.
In conclusion, decreased beta-catenin expression, as well as DKK1 over-expression might be associated with the process of the pathogenesis of PE. Further studies would elucidate their exact roles in the pathogenesis of PE.
Severe preeclampsia; Beta-catenin; Dickkof-1; Placenta
Fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS) is a neurodegenerative disorder associated with fragile X premutation carriers. Previous studies have shown that fragile X rCGG repeats are sufficient to cause neurodegeneration and that the rCGG-repeat-binding proteins Pur α and heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein (hnRNP) A2/B1 could modulate rCGG-mediated neuronal toxicity. Mobile genetic elements or their remnants populate the genomes, and the activities of these elements are tightly controlled for the fitness of host genomes in different organisms. Here we provide both biochemical and genetic evidence to show that the activation of a specific retrotransposon, gypsy, can modulate rCGG-mediated neurodegeneration in an FXTAS Drosophila model. We find that one of the rCGG-repeat-binding proteins, hnRNP A2/B1, is involved in this process via interaction with heterochromatin protein 1. Knockdown of gypsy RNA by RNAi could suppress the neuronal toxicity caused by rCGG repeats. These data together point to a surprisingly active role for retrotransposition in neurodegeneration.
Adverse Drug Reaction (ADR) is one of the most important issues in the assessment of drug safety. In fact, many adverse drug reactions are not discovered during limited pre-marketing clinical trials; instead, they are only observed after long term post-marketing surveillance of drug usage. In light of this, the detection of adverse drug reactions, as early as possible, is an important topic of research for the pharmaceutical industry. Recently, large numbers of adverse events and the development of data mining technology have motivated the development of statistical and data mining methods for the detection of ADRs. These stand-alone methods, with no integration into knowledge discovery systems, are tedious and inconvenient for users and the processes for exploration are time-consuming. This paper proposes an interactive system platform for the detection of ADRs. By integrating an ADR data warehouse and innovative data mining techniques, the proposed system not only supports OLAP style multidimensional analysis of ADRs, but also allows the interactive discovery of associations between drugs and symptoms, called a drug-ADR association rule, which can be further developed using other factors of interest to the user, such as demographic information. The experiments indicate that interesting and valuable drug-ADR association rules can be efficiently mined.
Adverse drug reaction; Associative classification; Contingency cube; Data mining; Data warehouse; Pharmacovigilance
Transient potential receptor melastatin-2 (TRPM2) is a non-selective Ca2+-permeable cation channel of the TRPM channel subfamily and is mainly activated by intracellular adenosine diphosphate ribose (ADPR). Here we synthesized a 1-(2-nitrophenyl)ethyl caged ADPR (NPE-ADPR) and found that uncaging of NPE-ADPR efficiently stimulated Ca2+, Mg2+, and Zn2+ influx in a concentration-dependent manner in intact human Jurkat T-lymphocytes. The cation influx was inhibited by inhibitors or knockdown of TRPM2. Likewise, uncaging of NPE-ADPR markedly induced cation entry in HEK 293 cells that overexpress TRPM2. As expected, high temperature increased the ability of the photolyzed NPE-ADPR to induce cation entry, whereas acidic pH inhibited. Moreover, the absence of extracellular Ca2+ significantly inhibited Mg2+ and Zn2+ influx after uncaging NPE-ADPR. On the other hand, the absence of extracellular Na+ or Mg2+ had no effect on photolyzed NPE-ADPR induced Ca2+ entry. Taken together, our results indicated that NPE-ADPR is a cell permeable ADPR analogue that is useful for studying TRPM2-mediated cation entry in intact cells.
Identification of biomarkers representing the evolution of the pathophysiology of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is vitally important, not only for objective diagnosis but also for the evaluation of therapeutic efficacy and resilience to trauma. Ongoing research is directed at identifying molecular biomarkers for PTSD, including traumatic stress induced proteins, transcriptomes, genomic variances and genetic modulators, using biologic samples from subjects' blood, saliva, urine, and postmortem brain tissues. However, the correlation of these biomarker molecules in peripheral or postmortem samples to altered brain functions associated with psychiatric symptoms in PTSD remains unresolved. Here, we present an animal model of PTSD in which both peripheral blood and central brain biomarkers, as well as behavioral phenotype, can be collected and measured, thus providing the needed correlation of the central biomarkers of PTSD, which are mechanistic and pathognomonic but cannot be collected from people, with the peripheral biomarkers and behavioral phenotypes, which can.
Our animal model of PTSD employs restraint and tail shocks repeated for three continuous days - the inescapable tail-shock model (ITS) in rats. This ITS model mimics the pathophysiology of PTSD 17, 7, 4, 10. We and others have verified that the ITS model induces behavioral and neurobiological alterations similar to those found in PTSD subjects 17, 7, 10, 9. Specifically, these stressed rats exhibit (1) a delayed and exaggerated startle response appearing several days after stressor cessation, which given the compressed time scale of the rat's life compared to a humans, corresponds to the one to three months delay of symptoms in PTSD patients (DSM-IV-TR PTSD Criterian D/E 13), (2) enhanced plasma corticosterone (CORT) for several days, indicating compromise of the hypothalamopituitary axis (HPA), and (3) retarded body weight gain after stressor cessation, indicating dysfunction of metabolic regulation.
The experimental paradigms employed for this model are: (1) a learned helplessness paradigm in the rat assayed by measurement of acoustic startle response (ASR) and a charting of body mass; (2) microdissection of the rat brain into regions and nuclei; (3) enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for blood levels of CORT; (4) a gene expression microarray plus related bioinformatics tools 18. This microarray, dubbed rMNChip, focuses on mitochondrial and mitochondria-related nuclear genes in the rat so as to specifically address the neuronal bioenergetics hypothesized to be involved in PTSD.
Medicine; Issue 68; Genetics; Physiology; Neuroscience; Immunology; PTSD; biomarker; stress; fear; startle; corticosterone; animal model; RNA; RT-PCR; gene chip; cDNA microarray; oligonucleotide microarray; amygdala; prefrontal cortex; hippocampus; cingulate cortex; hypothalamus; white blood cell
Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) and the closely related gamma-2 herpesvirus rhesus macaque (RM) rhadinovirus (RRV) are the only known viruses to encode viral homologues of the cellular interferon (IFN) regulatory factors (IRFs). Recent characterization of a viral IRF (vIRF) deletion clone of RRV (vIRF-knockout RRV [vIRF-ko RRV]) demonstrated that vIRFs inhibit induction of type I and type II IFNs during RRV infection of peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Because the IFN response is a key component to a host's antiviral defenses, this study has investigated the role of vIRFs in viral replication and the development of the immune response during in vivo infection in RMs, the natural host of RRV. Experimental infection of RMs with vIRF-ko RRV resulted in decreased viral loads and diminished B cell hyperplasia, a characteristic pathology during acute RRV infection that often develops into more severe lymphoproliferative disorders in immune-compromised animals, similar to pathologies in KSHV-infected individuals. Moreover, in vivo infection with vIRF-ko RRV resulted in earlier and sustained production of proinflammatory cytokines and earlier induction of an anti-RRV T cell response compared to wild-type RRV infection. These findings reveal the broad impact that vIRFs have on pathogenesis and the immune response in vivo and are the first to validate the importance of vIRFs during de novo infection in the host.
Background: The role and mechanism of cADPR, an endogenous Ca2+-mobilizing nucleotide, in cardiomyogenesis remain to be determined.
Results: We found that inhibition of the cADPR cascade facilitated cardiomyocyte differentiation of mouse ES cells.
Conclusion: The CD38-cADPR-Ca2+ signaling pathway antagonizes the cardiomyocyte differentiation of mouse ES cells.
Significance: Inhibition of cADPR signaling should provide a good approach to enrich functional cardiomyocytes from ES cells.
Cyclic adenosine diphosphoribose (cADPR) is an endogenous Ca2+ mobilizing messenger that is formed by ADP-ribosyl cyclases from nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD). The main ADP-ribosyl cyclase in mammals is CD38, a multi-functional enzyme and a type II membrane protein. Here we explored the role of CD38-cADPR-Ca2+ in the cardiomyogenesis of mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells. We found that the mouse ES cells are responsive to cADPR and possess the key components of the cADPR signaling pathway. In vitro cardiomyocyte (CM) differentiation of mouse ES cells was initiated by embryoid body (EB) formation. Interestingly, beating cells appeared earlier and were more abundant in CD38 knockdown EBs than in control EBs. Real-time RT-PCR and Western blot analyses further showed that the expression of several cardiac markers, including GATA4, MEF2C, NKX2.5, and α-MLC, were increased markedly in CD38 knockdown EBs than those in control EBs. Similarly, FACS analysis showed that more cardiac Troponin T-positive CMs existed in CD38 knockdown or 8-Br-cADPR, a cADPR antagonist, treated EBs compared with that in control EBs. On the other hand, overexpression of CD38 in mouse ES cells significantly inhibited CM differentiation. Moreover, CD38 knockdown ES cell-derived CMs possess the functional properties characteristic of normal ES cell-derived CMs. Last, we showed that the CD38-cADPR pathway negatively modulated the FGF4-Erks1/2 cascade during CM differentiation of ES cells, and transiently inhibition of Erk1/2 blocked the enhanced effects of CD38 knockdown on the differentiation of CM from ES cells. Taken together, our data indicate that the CD38-cADPR-Ca2+ signaling pathway antagonizes the CM differentiation of mouse ES cells.
Calcium; Calcium Signaling; Cardiac Development; Cd38; Cyclic ADP-ribose; Differentiation; Embryonic Stem Cell; Signal Transduction
The overexpression of interferon (IFN)-inducible genes is a prominent feature of SLE, serves as a marker for active and more severe disease, and is also observed in other autoimmune and inflammatory conditions. The genetic variations responsible for sustained activation of IFN responsive genes are unknown.
We systematically evaluated association of SLE with a total of 1,754 IFN-pathway related genes, including IFN-inducible genes known to be differentially expressed in SLE patients and their direct regulators. We performed a three-stage design where two cohorts (total n=939 SLE cases, 3,398 controls) were analyzed independently and jointly for association with SLE, and the results were adjusted for the number of comparisons.
A total of 16,137 SNPs passed all quality control filters of which 316 demonstrated replicated association with SLE in both cohorts. Nine variants were further genotyped for confirmation in an average of 1,316 independent SLE cases and 3,215 independent controls. Association with SLE was confirmed for several genes, including the transmembrane receptor CD44 (rs507230, P = 3.98×10−12), cytokine pleiotrophin (PTN) (rs919581, P = 5.38×10−04), the heat-shock DNAJA1 (rs10971259, P = 6.31×10−03), and the nuclear import protein karyopherin alpha 1 (KPNA1) (rs6810306, P = 4.91×10−02).
This study expands the number of candidate genes associated with SLE and highlights the potential of pathway-based approaches for gene discovery. Identification of the causal alleles will help elucidate the molecular mechanisms responsible for activation of the IFN system in SLE.
Previous research has shown inconsistent findings regarding the relations between the functional Val158Met polymorphisms of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene and individual differences in personality traits. This study attempts to overcome some of the weaknesses of previous research, namely, small sample sizes, clinical samples, ethnic stratification, wide age ranges, neglecting sex differences, and single measures of personality traits. A large sample (n=556, 250 male, 306 female) of healthy Chinese college students (mean age=20.5±1 years) was given a battery of personality scales, including the temperament and character inventory-revised, the behavioral inhibition system and behavioral approach system scale, the Beck depression inventory, and the Beck anxiety inventory. Factor analysis of the affect-related personality traits revealed two factors that corresponded to positive (PEM) and negative emotionality (NEM). We found a consistent COMT-by-sex interaction effect on affect-related personality traits. Compared with males with Met/Met alleles, males with Val/Val alleles showed significantly higher scores on NEM, but lower scores on PEM. Females, however, showed an opposite but nonsignificant pattern. Our results supported the role of the COMT gene in personality traits for males and contributed to the growing literature on sex differences in gene–behavior connections.
sex; COMT; personality; dopamine; mood/anxiety/stress disorders; behavioral science; depression; unipolar/bipolar; personality; COMT
Background: The available agonists for cADPR, an endogenous Ca2+-mobilizing nucleotide, are either weak or not cell-permeant.
Results: We synthesized a coumarin-caged isopropylidene-protected cIDPRE (Co-i-cIDPRE), which is a potent and cell-permeant cADPR agonist.
Conclusion: Uncaging of Co-i-cIDPRE activates RyRs for Ca2+ mobilization and triggers Ca2+ influx via TRPM2.
Significance: Co-i-cIDPRE should provide a valuable tool to study cADPR/Ca2+ signaling.
Cyclic adenosine diphosphate ribose is an endogenous Ca2+ mobilizer involved in diverse cellular processes. A cell membrane-permeable cyclic adenosine diphosphate ribose analogue, cyclic inosine diphosphoribose ether (cIDPRE), can induce Ca2+ increase in intact human Jurkat T-lymphocytes. Here we synthesized a coumarin-caged analogue of cIDPRE (Co-i-cIDPRE), aiming to have a precisely temporal and spatial control of bioactive cIDPRE release inside the cell using UV uncaging. We showed that Co-i-cIDPRE accumulated inside Jurkat cells quickly and efficiently. Uncaging of Co-i-cIDPRE evoked Ca2+ release from endoplasmic reticulum, with concomitant Ca2+ influx in Jurkat cells. Ca2+ release evoked by uncaged Co-i-cIDPRE was blocked by knockdown of ryanodine receptors (RyRs) 2 and 3 in Jurkat cells. The associated Ca2+ influx, on the other hand, was abolished by double knockdown of Stim1 and TRPM2 in Jurkat cells. Furthermore, Ca2+ release or influx evoked by uncaged Co-i-cIDPRE was recapitulated in HEK293 cells that overexpress RyRs or TRPM2, respectively, but not in wild-type cells lacking these channels. In summary, our results indicate that uncaging of Co-i-cIDPRE incites Ca2+ release from endoplasmic reticulum via RyRs and triggers Ca2+ influx via TRPM2.
Calcium; Calcium Signaling; Cyclic ADP-ribose; Ryanodine Receptor; TRP Channels; SOCE; TRPM2
Human CD38 is a novel multi-functional protein that acts not only as an antigen for B-lymphocyte activation, but also an enzyme catalyzing the synthesis of a Ca2+ messenger molecule, cyclic ADP-ribose, from NAD+. It is well established that this novel Ca2+ signaling enzyme is responsible for regulating a wide range of physiological functions. Based on the crystal structure of the CD38/NAD+ complex, we synthesized a series of simplified N-substituted nicotinamide derivatives (Compound 1–14). A number of these compounds exhibited moderate inhibition of the NAD+ utilizing activity of CD38, with Compound 4 showing the higher potency. The crystal structure of CD38/ Compound 4 complex and computer simulation of Compound 7 docking to CD38 show a significant role of the nicotinamide moiety and the distal aromatic group of the compounds for substrate recognition by the active site of CD38. Biologically, we showed that both Compounds 4 and 7 effectively relaxed the agonist-induced contraction of muscle preparations form rats and guinea pigs. This study is a rational design of inhibitors for CD38 that exhibit important physiological effects, and can serve as a model for future drug development.
Fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS), a late-onset neurodegenerative disorder, has been recognized in older male fragile X premutation carriers and is uncoupled from fragile X syndrome. Using a Drosophila model of FXTAS, we previously showed that transcribed premutation repeats alone are sufficient to cause neurodegeneration. MiRNAs are sequence-specific regulators of post-transcriptional gene expression. To determine the role of miRNAs in rCGG repeat-mediated neurodegeneration, we profiled miRNA expression and identified selective miRNAs, including miR-277, that are altered specifically in Drosophila brains expressing rCGG repeats. We tested their genetic interactions with rCGG repeats and found that miR-277 can modulate rCGG repeat-mediated neurodegeneration. Furthermore, we identified Drep-2 and Vimar as functional targets of miR-277 that could modulate rCGG repeat-mediated neurodegeneration. Finally, we found that hnRNP A2/B1, an rCGG repeat-binding protein, can directly regulate the expression of miR-277. These results suggest that sequestration of specific rCGG repeat-binding proteins could lead to aberrant expression of selective miRNAs, which may modulate the pathogenesis of FXTAS by post-transcriptionally regulating the expression of specific mRNAs involved in FXTAS.
Fragile X–associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS) is an adult-onset neurodegenerative disorder, usually affecting males over 50 years of age. FXTAS patients are the carriers of fragile X premutation alleles. Using a FXTAS Drosophila model, we previously demonstrated that fragile X premutation rCGG repeats alone could cause neurodegeneration. Pur α and hnRNP A2/B1 were identified as specific premutation rCGG repeat-binding proteins (RBPs) that could bind and modulate fragile X permutation rCGG-mediated neuronal degeneration. MiRNAs are sequence-specific regulators of post-transcriptional gene expression. Here we show that fragile X premutation rCGG repeats could lead to aberrant expression of selective miRNAs, which may modulate the pathogenesis of FXTAS by post-transcriptionally regulating the expression of specific mRNAs involved in FXTAS.
Hap1 was originally identified as a neuronal protein that interacts with huntingtin, the Huntington’s disease (HD) protein. Later studies revealed that Hap1 participates in intracellular trafficking in neuronal cells and that this trafficking function can be adversely affected by mutant huntingtin. Hap1 is also present in pancreatic β-cells and other endocrine cells; however, the role of Hap1 in these endocrine cells remains unknown. Using the Cre-loxP system, we generated conditional Hap1 knockout mice to selectively deplete the expression of Hap1 in mouse pancreatic β-cells. Mutant mice with Hap1 deficiency in pancreatic β-cells had impaired glucose tolerance and decreased insulin release in response to intraperitoneally injected glucose. Using cultured pancreatic β-cell lines and isolated mouse pancreatic islets, we confirmed that decreasing Hap1 could reduce glucose-mediated insulin release. Electron microscopy suggested that there was a reduced number of insulin-containing vesicles docked at the plasma membrane of pancreatic islets in Hap1 mutant mice following intraperitoneal glucose injection. Glucose treatment decreased the phosphorylation of Hap1A in cultured β-cells and in mouse pancreatic tissues. Moreover, this glucose treatment increased Hap1’s association with kinesin light chain and dynactin p150, both of which are involved in microtubule-dependent trafficking. These studies suggest that Hap1 is important for insulin release from β-cells via dephosphorylation that can regulate its intracellular trafficking function.
Huntingtin; Trafficking; Insulin; Pancreas; Phosphorylation
The asymmetric unit of the title compound, C19H15FN2O2, contains two molecules, A and B, in which the dihedral angles between the ring systems are 46.4 (2) and 17.24 (14)°, respectively. In the crystal, molecules are linked into  chains of alternating A and B species by N—H⋯O hydrogen bonds.
Store-operated Ca2+ channels are a major Ca2+ entry pathway in nonexcitable cells, which drive various essential cellular functions. Recently, STIM1 and Orai proteins have been identified as the major molecular components of the Ca2+ release-activated Ca2+ (CRAC) channel. As the key subunit of the CRAC channel, STIM1 is the ER Ca2+ sensor and is essential for the recruitment and activation of Orai1. However, the mechanisms in transmission of information of STIM1 to Orai1 still need further investigation. Bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) is one of the most advanced and powerful tools for studying and visualising protein-protein interactions in living cells. We utilised BiFC and acceptor photobleaching fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) experiments to visualise and determine the state of STIM1 in the living cells in resting state. Our results demonstrate that STIM1 exists in an oligomeric form in resting cells and that rather than the SAM motif, it is the C-terminus (residues 233–474) of STIM1 that is the key domain for the interaction between STIM1s. The STIM1 oligomers (BiFC-STIM1) and wild-type STIM1 colocalised and had a fibrillar distribution in resting conditions. Depletion of ER Ca2+ stores induced BiFC-STIM1 distribution to become punctate, an effect that could be prevented or reversed by 2-APB. After depletion of the Ca2+ stores, BiFC-STIM1 has the ability to form puncta that colocalise with wild-type STIM1 or Orai1 near the plasma membrane. Our data also indicate that the function of BiFC-STIM1 was not altered compared with that of wild-type STIM1.
DNA damage activates checkpoint controls which block progression of cells through the division cycle. Several different checkpoints exist that control transit at different positions in the cell cycle. A role for checkpoint activation in providing resistance of cells to genotoxic anticancer therapy, including chemotherapy and ionizing radiation, is widely recognized. Although the core molecular functions that execute different damage activated checkpoints are known, the signals that control checkpoint activation are far from understood. We used a kinome-spanning RNA interference screen to delineate signalling required for radiation-mediated retinoblastoma protein activation, the recognized executor of G1 checkpoint control. Our results corroborate the involvement of the p53 tumour suppressor (TP53) and its downstream targets p21CIP1/WAF1 but infer lack of involvement of canonical double strand break (DSB) recognition known for its role in activating TP53 in damaged cells. Instead our results predict signalling involving the known TP53 phosphorylating kinase PRPK/TP53RK and the JNK/p38MAPK activating kinase STK4/MST1, both hitherto unrecognised for their contribution to DNA damage G1 checkpoint signalling. Our results further predict a network topology whereby induction of p21CIP1/WAF1 is required but not sufficient to elicit checkpoint activation. Our experiments document a role of the kinases identified in radiation protection proposing their pharmacological inhibition as a potential strategy to increase radiation sensitivity in proliferating cancer cells.
Risky decision-making is a complex process that involves weighing the probabilities of alternative options that can be desirable, undesirable, or neutral. Individuals vary greatly in how they make decisions either under ambiguity and/or under risk. Such individual differences may have genetic bases. Based on previous studies on the genetic basis of decision making, two decision making tasks [i.e., Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) and Loss Aversion Task (LAT)] were used to test the effect of 5-HTTLPR polymorphism on decision making under ambiguity and under risk in a large Han Chinese sample (572 college students, 312 females). Basic intelligence and memory tests were also included to control for the influence of basic cognitive abilities on decision making. We found that 5-HTTLPR polymorphism significantly influenced performance in both IGT and LAT. After controlling for intellectual and memory abilities, subjects homozygous for s allele had lower IGT scores than l carriers in the first 40 trials of the IGT task. They also exhibited higher loss aversion than l carriers in the LAT task. Moreover, the effects of 5-HTTLPR were stronger for males than for females. These results extend the literature on the important role of emotion in decision under ambiguity and risk, and provide additional lights on how decision-making is influenced by culture as well as sex differences. Combining our results with existing literature, we propose that these effects might be mediated by a neural circuitry that comprises the amygdala, ventromedial prefrontal cortex, and insular cortex. Understanding the genetic factors affecting decision in healthy subjects may allow us better identify at-risk individuals, and target better the development of new potential treatments for specific disorders such as schizophrenia, addiction, and depression.
5-HTTLPR; Iowa Gambling Task; Loss Aversion; Decision Making; Emotion; Amygdala; Ventromedial Prefrontal Cortex; Insula
Enoyl-ACP reductase (ENR) catalyses the last reduction reaction in the fatty acid elongation cycle in bacteria and is a good antimicrobial target candidate. FabV is the most recently discovered class of ENR, but we lack information about the atomic structure and the key residues involved in reductase activity except for the known conserved tyrosine and lysine residues in the Y-X8-K active site motif.
Here we report the crystal structure of FabV from Xanthomonas oryzae (xoFabV). The crystal structure of this enzyme has been solved to 1.6 Å resolution in space group P212121. The model of xoFabV consists of one monomer in the asymmetric unit which is composed of 13 α-helices and 11 β-strands, representing a canonical Rossmann fold architecture. Structural comparison presents that the locations of the conserved tyrosine (Y236) and lysine (K245) residues in the Y-X8-K active site motif of xoFabV and the Y-X6-K motif of ecFabI are notably similar. However, the conformations of Y236 in xoFabV and Y156 in ecFabI are distinct. Structure-based site-directed mutagenesis and enzymatic activity assays reveal that in addition to the conserved Y236 and K245 in the Y-X8-K motif, Y53, D111 and Y226 are key residues implicated in the reductase activity, and F113 and T276 are also important for enzyme function. Moreover, a proposed active lysine located immediately after the Y-X8-K motif in FabV from Burkholderia mallei (bmFabV) is altered to an inactive V246 in xoFabV.
We determine the first crystal structure of the FabV enzyme and identify several residues important for its enzymatic activity. These findings lay a solid foundation for the development of specific antibacterial inhibitors of the pathogenic bacteria, such as Vibrio cholerae, Burkholderia species and Xanthomonas species.
Antigen-dependent stimulation of T cells plays a critical role in adaptive immunity and host defense. Activation of major histocompatibility complex II (MHC II) molecules, dictated by Class II transactivator (CIITA), is considered a pivotal step in this process. The mechanism underlying differential regulation of CIITA activity by the post-translational modification machinery (PTM) and its implications are not clearly appreciated. Here, we report that SIRT1, a type III deacetylase, interacts with and deacetylates CIITA. SIRT1 activation augments MHC II transcription by shielding CIITA from proteasomal degradation and promoting nuclear accumulation and target binding of CIITA. In contrast, depletion of SIRT1 upregulates CIITA acetylation and attenuates its activity. Nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase (NAMPT) that synthesizes NAD+ required for SIRT1 activation exerts similar effects on CIITA activity. Two different types of stress stimuli, hypobaric hypoxia and oxidized low-density lipoprotein (oxLDL), induce the acetylation of CIITA and suppress its activity by inhibiting the SIRT1 expression and activity. Thus, our data link SIRT1-mediated deacetylation of CIITA to MHC II transactivation in macrophages and highlight a novel strategy stress cues may employ to manipulate host adaptive immune system.
The asymmetric unit of the title compound, C6H16N+·C3H2N3S3
−, contains two independent ion pairs. The 2,4,6-trithioxo-1,3,5-triazinan-1-ide anion features an almost planar six-membered ring (r.m.s. deviations = 0.009 and 0.018 Å) having exocyclic double-bond S atoms. The anions interact by N—H⋯S hydrogen bonds to generate a chain running along . The triethylammonium cations are hydrogen bonded to the anions with the ammonium H atom forming a hydrogen bond to the negatively-charged N atom of the anion. In the crystal structure, both triethylammonium cations are disordered over two orientations with equal occupancies.
The Fusarium graminearum species complex (Fg complex) consists of phylogenetically distinct species some of which cannot be discriminated based on their morphology. Their chemotypes and geographic distributions are dramatically different, and these highlight the challenges that Fusarium head blight (FHB) poses to plant disease specialists and plant breeders, thereby requiring that quarantine officials employ molecular diagnostic tools in their active surveillance programs. Molecular marker technologies play essential roles in species identification of the Fg complex, and they are being used widely to assess the genetic diversity of the clade. The utility, applicability and limitations of molecular methods for assessing the population structure and genetic diversity within the Fg complex are discussed with suitable examples. Knowledge gained from these studies will provide a baseline for monitoring changes in FHB pathogen diversity and mycotoxin potential over time, both of which are critical to the ultimate control and elimination of this economically devastating disease.
Fusarium graminearum species complex; chemotype; genetic diversity; population structure; geographic distribution
Traditional behavioral genetic studies (e.g., twin, adoption studies) have shown that human personality has moderate to high heritability, but recent molecular behavioral genetic studies have failed to identify quantitative trait loci (QTL) with consistent effects. The current study adopted a multi-step approach (ANOVA followed by multiple regression and permutation) to assess the cumulative effects of multiple QTLs. Using a system-level (dopamine system) genetic approach, we investigated a personality trait deeply rooted in the nervous system (the Highly Sensitive Personality, HSP). 480 healthy Chinese college students were given the HSP scale and genotyped for 98 representative polymorphisms in all major dopamine neurotransmitter genes. In addition, two environment factors (stressful life events and parental warmth) that have been implicated for their contributions to personality development were included to investigate their relative contributions as compared to genetic factors. In Step 1, using ANOVA, we identified 10 polymorphisms that made statistically significant contributions to HSP. In Step 2, these polymorphism's main effects and interactions were assessed using multiple regression. This model accounted for 15% of the variance of HSP (p<0.001). Recent stressful life events accounted for an additional 2% of the variance. Finally, permutation analyses ascertained the probability of obtaining these findings by chance to be very low, p ranging from 0.001 to 0.006. Dividing these loci by the subsystems of dopamine synthesis, degradation/transport, receptor and modulation, we found that the modulation and receptor subsystems made the most significant contribution to HSP. The results of this study demonstrate the utility of a multi-step neuronal system-level approach in assessing genetic contributions to individual differences in human behavior. It can potentially bridge the gap between the high heritability estimates based on traditional behavioral genetics and the lack of reproducible genetic effects observed currently from molecular genetic studies.
An expanded polyglutamine (polyQ) domain in the N-terminal region of huntingtin (htt) causes misfolding and accumulation of htt in neuronal cells and the subsequent neurodegeneration of Huntington's disease (HD). Clearing the misfolded htt is critical for preventing neuropathology, and this process is mediated primarily by both the ubiquitin–proteasome system (UPS) and autophagy. Although overexpression of mutant htt can inhibit UPS activity in cultured cells, mutant htt does not inhibit global UPS activity in the brains of HD transgenic mice. These findings underscore the importance of investigating the function of the UPS and autophagy in the brain when mutant proteins are not overexpressed. When cultured PC12 cells were treated with either UPS or autophagy inhibitors, more N-terminal mutant htt fragments accumulated via inhibition of the UPS. Furthermore, in HD CAG repeat knock-in mouse brain, inhibiting the UPS also resulted in a greater accumulation of N-terminal, but not full-length, mutant htt than inhibiting autophagy did. Our findings suggest that impairment of the UPS may be more important for the accumulation of N-terminal mutant htt and might therefore make an attractive therapeutic target.
It is a widespread belief in Asian countries that mung bean soup (MBS) may afford a protective effect against heat stress. Lack of evidence supports MBS conferring a benefit in addition to water.
Here we show that vitexin and isovitexin are the major antioxidant components in mungbean (more than 96% of them existing in the bean seed coat), and both of them could be absorbed via gavage into rat plasma. In the plasma of rats fed with mungbean coat extract before or after exposure to heat stress, the levels of malonaldehyde and activities of lactate dehydrogenase and nitric oxide synthase were remarkably reduced; the levels of total antioxidant capacity and glutathione (a quantitative assessment of oxidative stress) were significantly enhanced.
Our results demonstrate that MBS can play additional roles to prevent heat stress injury. Characterization of the mechanisms underlying mungbean beneficial effects should help in the design of diet therapy strategies to alleviate heat stress, as well as provide reference for searching natural medicines against oxidative stress induced diseases.
Natural products represent an important source for agents of cancer prevention and cancer treatment. More than 60% of conventional anticancer drugs are derived from natural sources, particularly from plant-derived materials. In this study, 2α, 3α, 19β, 23β-tetrahydroxyurs-12-en-28-oic acid (THA), a novel triterpenoid from the leaves of Sinojackia sarcocarpa, was isolated, and its anticancer activity was investigated both in vitro and in vivo.
THA possessed potent tumor selected toxicity in vitro. It exhibited significantly higher cytotoxicity to the cancer cell lines A2780 and HepG2 than to IOSE144 and QSG7701, two noncancerous cell lines derived from ovary epithelium and liver, respectively. Moreover, THA showed a dose-dependent inhibitory effect on A2780 ovary tumor growth in vivo in nude mice. THA induced a dose-dependent apoptosis and G2/M cell cycle arrest in A2780 and HepG2 cells. The THA-induced cell cycle arrest was accompanied by a downregulation of Cdc2. The apoptosis induced by THA was evident by induction of DNA fragmentation, release of cytoplasmic Cytochrome c from mitochondria, activation of caspases, downregulation of Bcl-2 and upregulation of Bax.
The primary data indicated that THA exhibit a high toxicity toward two cancer cells than their respective non-cancerous counterparts and has a significant anticancer activity both in vitro and in vivo. Thus, THA and/or its derivatives may have great potential in the prevention and treatment of human ovary tumors and other malignancies.