Myocardial infarction (MI) results in loss of myofibers in the ischemic zone of the heart, followed by scar formation. These factors increase barriers to mobilization of mesenchymal stem cells (MSC), thereby impeding their effectiveness in cardiac repair. This study examined MSC overexpressing CXCR4 (MSCCX4) to determine penetration into infarcted myocardium by releasing collagen degrading enzyme, matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9). In vitro, mouse MSC were utilized, including MSC using adenoviral transduction, to express CXCR4/green fluorescent protein (GFP) (MSCCX4), Null/GFP (MSCNull), MSC treated with siRNA targeting CXCR4 (MSCsiR), MSC treated with control siRNA(MSCCon-siR), MSCCX4 treated with siRNA targeting MMP-9 (MSCCX4-siRMP9) and MMP-14 (MSCCX4-siRMP14), MSC derived from MMP-9 knockout mouse with adenoviral transduction for GFP (MSCMP9−), or MSCMP9− plus overexpressing CXCR4 (MSCMP9-CX4). The ability to cross the basement membrane was evaluated in all MSC using a trans-collagen gel invasion assay. The CXCR4 and MMP expression were analyzed by Western blot. In vivo, MSC with various treatments were infused into mice via tail vein injections 7 days after MI. Echocardiography was performed before harvesting hearts for analysis at 4 weeks after MSC injection. Both in vitro and in vivo studies demonstrated upregulation of MMP-9 induced by MSCCX4, promoting increased GFP+ cell migration into the infarcted area in comparison to control group. This enhanced response was associated with reduced left ventricular (LV) fibrosis, increased LV free wall thickness, angiogenesis, and improved LV function. Under hypoxic conditions, MMP-9 is upregulated in MSCCX4, thus facilitating cross of the basement membrane, resulting in an improved remodeling of post-MI tissue.
The authors conducted a time-series analysis to examine seasonal variation of mortality risk in association with particulate matter less than 2.5 μm in aerodynamic diameter (PM2.5) and chemical species in Xi’an, China, using daily air pollution and all-cause and cause-specific mortality data (2004–2008). Poisson regression incorporating natural splines was used to estimate mortality risks of PM2.5 and its chemical components, adjusting for day of the week, time trend, and meteorologic effects. Increases of 2.29% (95% confidence interval: 0.83, 3.76) for all-cause mortality and 3.08% (95% confidence interval: 0.94, 5.26) for cardiovascular mortality were associated with an interquartile range increase of 103.0 μg/m3 in lagged 1–2 day PM2.5 exposure. Stronger effects were observed for the elderly (≥65 years), males, and cardiovascular diseases groups. Secondary components (sulfate and ammonium), combustion species (elemental carbon, sulfur, chlorine), and transition metals (chromium, lead, nickel, and zinc) appeared most responsible for increased risk, particularly in the cold months. The authors concluded that differential association patterns observed across species and seasons indicated that PM2.5-related effects might not be sufficiently explained by PM2.5 mass alone. Future research is needed to examine spatial and temporal varying factors that might play important roles in modifying the PM2.5–mortality association.
chemical components; excess relative risk; mortality; PM2.5; time series; Xi’an
Fumagillin is the only antibiotic approved for control of nosema disease in honey bees and has been extensively used in United States apiculture for more than 50 years for control of Nosema apis. It is toxic to mammals and must be applied seasonally and with caution to avoid residues in honey. Fumagillin degrades or is diluted in hives over the foraging season, exposing bees and the microsporidia to declining concentrations of the drug. We showed that spore production by Nosema ceranae, an emerging microsporidian pathogen in honey bees, increased in response to declining fumagillin concentrations, up to 100% higher than that of infected bees that have not been exposed to fumagillin. N. apis spore production was also higher, although not significantly so. Fumagillin inhibits the enzyme methionine aminopeptidase2 (MetAP2) in eukaryotic cells and interferes with protein modifications necessary for normal cell function. We sequenced the MetAP2 gene for apid Nosema species and determined that, although susceptibility to fumagillin differs among species, there are no apparent differences in fumagillin binding sites. Protein assays of uninfected bees showed that fumagillin altered structural and metabolic proteins in honey bee midgut tissues at concentrations that do not suppress microsporidia reproduction. The microsporidia, particularly N. ceranae, are apparently released from the suppressive effects of fumagillin at concentrations that continue to impact honey bee physiology. The current application protocol for fumagillin may exacerbate N. ceranae infection rather than suppress it.
Nosema ceranae, a microsporidian pathogen described from Asian honey bees, was discovered infecting European honey bees coincident with early reports of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) and has been suggested to be a factor in honey bee declines. Use of fumagillin, the only known reliable treatment for the naturally occurring Nosema apis, subsequently increased but controversial field results were reported for N. ceranae. Fumagillin suppresses reproduction of microsporidia but disease prevalence and hive performance in treated apiaries were similar to untreated apiaries 6 months after treatment. We compared responses of N. apis and N. ceranae to the antibiotic at concentrations that simulated fumagillin degradation in hives during the honey bee foraging season when use of the drug is discontinued. N. ceranae spore production recovered at a higher fumagillin concentration than N. apis. At lower fumagillin concentrations, significantly more infective N. ceranae spores were produced in treated bees than in untreated infected bees. Protein profiles of bees fed fumagillin confirmed our hypothesis that fumagillin affects bee physiology at concentrations that no longer suppress N. ceranae. Use of fumagillin may increase the prevalence of N. ceranae and is potentially a factor in replacement of N. apis by N. ceranae in US apiaries.
Hindbrain neuronal networks serving respiratory, proprioceptive, and arousal functions share a developmental requirement for the bHLH transcription factor Atoh1. Loss of Atoh1 in mice results in respiratory failure and neonatal lethality; however, the neuronal identity and mechanism by which Atoh1-dependent cells sustain newborn breathing remains unknown. We uncovered that selective loss of Atoh1 from the post-mitotic retrotrapezoid nucleus (RTN) neurons results in severely impaired inspiratory rhythm and pronounced neonatal death. Mice that escape neonatal death develop abnormal chemoresponsiveness as adults. Interestingly, the expression of Atoh1 in the RTN neurons is not required for their specification or maintenance, but is important for their proper localization and to establish essential connections with the preBötzinger Complex (preBötC). These results provide insights into the genetic regulation of neonatal breathing and shed light on the labile sites that might contribute to sudden death in newborn infants and altered chemoresponsiveness in adults.
CCR5 is the primary coreceptor for HIV entry. Early after infection, the HIV viral population diversifies rapidly into a quasispecies. It is not known whether the initial efficiency of the viral quasispecies to utilize CCR5 is associated with HIV disease progression or if it changes in an infected individual over time. The CCR5 and CXCR4 utilization efficiencies (R5-UE and X4-UE) of the HIV quasispecies were examined using a pseudovirus, single-round infection assay for samples obtained from known seroconverters from Rakai district, Uganda (n=88). Initial and longitudinal R5-UE values were examined to assess the association of R5-UE with HIV disease progression using multivariate Cox proportional hazard models. Longitudinal samples were analyzed for 35 seroconverters who had samples available from multiple time points. There was no association between initial or longitudinal changes in R5-UE and the hazard of HIV disease progression (p=0.225 and p=0.942, respectively). In addition, R5-UE increased significantly over time after HIV seroconversion (p<0.001), regardless of HIV subtype or the emergence of CXCR4-tropic virus. These data demonstrate that the R5-UE of the viral quasispecies early in HIV infection is not associated with disease progression, and that R5-UE levels increase in HIV-infected individuals over time.
Senescence related regulatory pathways serve as barriers to cancer immortalization and progression but they are currently not well defined. FILIP1L is a growth inhibitory gene with multiple isoforms whose expression is increased in senescent prostate and prostate cancer cells, and decreased in many cancers. We investigated whether DNA methylation regulates FILIP1L in senescence and in prostate cancer development.
Materials and Methods
FILIP1L mRNA expression was assessed in prostate cancer and associated normal prostate tissues using quantitative polymerase chain reaction. A tissue microarray was constructed using 95 prostate cancer specimens and 45 benign prostate specimens. Vectra™ imaging was used to quantitate nuclear and cytoplasmic FILIP1L protein expression. Bisulfite sequencing and Pyrosequencing® were used to assess methylation. Prostate cancer cell lines were treated with 2′-deoxy-5-azacytidine and mRNA expression was assessed.
FILIP1L isoform 2 mRNA was increased in replicatively senescent human prostate epithelial cells and decreased in prostate cancer specimens. We verified a reduction in nuclear FILIP1L protein in prostate cancer using tissue microarrays (p = 0.006). A CpG island 5′ of the isoform 2 translational start site was identified that showed hypermethylation in prostate cancer cell lines and tumors compared to normal prostate cells and tissues. Pyrosequencing confirmed FILIP1L hypermethylation in all 14 tumors compared to paired normal tissues (p <0.0001). Isoform 2 expression was induced in prostate cancer cell lines using 2′-deoxy-5-azacytidine.
FILIP1L isoform 2 is one of the most commonly hypermethylated genes in prostate cancer. It may serve as an important marker of prostate cancer. Isoform 2 expression is associated with senescence and its down-regulation may represent an early important biological event in prostate cancer development.
prostate; prostatic neoplasms; gene expression; methylation; cell aging
Clinical studies have shown that integrase strand transfer inhibitors can be used to treat HIV-1 infection. Although the first-generation integrase inhibitors are susceptible to the emergence of resistance mutations that impair their efficacy in therapy, such resistance has not been identified to date in drug-naïve patients who have been treated with the second-generation inhibitor dolutegravir. During previous in vitro selection study, we identified a R263K mutation as the most common substitution to arise in the presence of dolutegravir with H51Y arising as a secondary mutation. Additional experiments reported here provide a plausible explanation for the absence of reported dolutegravir resistance among integrase inhibitor-naïve patients to date.
We now show that H51Y in combination with R263K increases resistance to dolutegravir but is accompanied by dramatic decreases in both enzymatic activity and viral replication.
Since H51Y and R263K may define a unique resistance pathway to dolutegravir, our results are consistent with the absence of resistance mutations in antiretroviral drug-naive patients treated with this drug.
HIV integrase; Dolutegravir; Resistance to antiretrovirals; Viral fitness; Strand-transfer assay
AIM: To conduct a meta-analysis to compare Roux-en-Y (R-Y) gastrojejunostomy with gastroduodenal Billroth I (B-I) anastomosis after distal gastrectomy (DG) for gastric cancer.
METHODS: A literature search was performed to identify studies comparing R-Y with B-I after DG for gastric cancer from January 1990 to November 2012 in Medline, Embase, Science Citation Index Expanded and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials in The Cochrane Library. Pooled odds ratios (OR) or weighted mean differences (WMD) with 95%CI were calculated using either ﬁxed or random effects model. Operative outcomes such as operation time, intraoperative blood loss and postoperative outcomes such as anastomotic leakage and stricture, bile reﬂux, remnant gastritis, reﬂux esophagitis, dumping symptoms, delayed gastric emptying and hospital stay were the main outcomes assessed. Meta-analyses were performed using RevMan 5.0 software (Cochrane library).
RESULTS: Four randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and 9 non-randomized observational clinical studies (OCS) involving 478 and 1402 patients respectively were included. Meta-analysis of RCTs revealed that R-Y reconstruction was associated with a reduced bile reﬂux (OR 0.04, 95%CI: 0.01, 0.14; P < 0.00 001) and remnant gastritis (OR 0.43, 95%CI: 0.28, 0.66; P = 0.0001), however needing a longer operation time (WMD 40.02, 95%CI: 13.93, 66.11; P = 0.003). Meta-analysis of OCS also revealed R-Y reconstruction had a lower incidence of bile reﬂux (OR 0.21, 95%CI: 0.08, 0.54; P = 0.001), remnant gastritis (OR 0.18, 95%CI: 0.11, 0.29; P < 0.00 001) and reﬂux esophagitis (OR 0.48, 95%CI: 0.26, 0.89; P = 0.02). However, this reconstruction method was found to be associated with a longer operation time (WMD 31.30, 95%CI: 12.99, 49.60; P = 0.0008).
CONCLUSION: This systematic review point towards some clinical advantages that are rendered by R-Y compared to B-I reconstruction post DG. However there is a need for further adequately powered, well-designed RCTs comparing the same.
Gastric cancer; Distal gastrectomy; Roux-en-Y; Billroth I; Reconstruction; Meta-analysis
The major event that triggers osteogenesis is the transition of mesenchymal stem cells into bone forming, differentiating osteoblast cells. Osteoblast differentiation is the primary component of bone formation, exemplified by the synthesis, deposition and mineralization of extracellular matrix. Although not well understood, osteoblast differentiation from mesenchymal stem cells is a well-orchestrated process. Recent advances in molecular and genetic studies using gene targeting in mouse enable a better understanding of the multiple factors and signaling networks that control the differentiation process at a molecular level. Osteoblast commitment and differentiation are controlled by complex activities involving signal transduction and transcriptional regulation of gene expression. We review Wnt signaling pathway and Runx2 regulation network, which are critical for osteoblast differentiation. Many other factors and signaling pathways have been implicated in regulation of osteoblast differentiation in a network manner, such as the factors Osterix, ATF4, and SATB2 and the TGF-beta, Hedgehog, FGF, ephrin, and sympathetic signaling pathways. This review summarizes the recent advances in the studies of signaling transduction pathways and transcriptional regulation of osteoblast cell lineage commitment and differentiation. The knowledge of osteoblast commitment and differentiation should be applied towards the development of new diagnostic and therapeutic alternatives for human bone diseases.
Osteoblast; Runx2; Osterix; ATF4; SATB2; Wnt signaling; TGF-Beta signaling; hedgehog signaling; fgf signaling; ephrin signaling; sympathetic signaling; Review
The double-stranded RNA-activated protein kinase (PKR) was originally identified as a sensor of virus infection, but its function in the brain remains unknown. Here, we report that the lack of PKR enhances learning and memory in several behavioral tasks while increasing network excitability. In addition, loss of PKR increases the late phase of long-lasting synaptic potentiation (L-LTP) in hippocampal slices. These effects are caused by an interferon-γ (IFN-γ)-mediated selective reduction in GABAergic synaptic action. Together, our results reveal that PKR finely tunes the network activity that must be maintained while storing a given episode during learning. Because PKR activity is altered in several neurological disorders, this kinase presents a promising new target for the treatment of cognitive dysfunction. As a first step in this direction, we show that a selective PKR inhibitor replicates the Pkr−/− phenotype in WT mice, enhancing long-term memory storage and L-LTP.
The role of Notch signaling in cervical cancer was investigated, suggesting potential therapy using combinations of Notch1-activating agents and somatostatin receptor 2–targeting agents.
The role of Notch signaling in cervical cancer is seemingly controversial. To confirm the function of Notch signaling in this type of cancer, we established a stable Notch1-activated cervical cancer HeLa cell line. We found that Notch1 activation resulted in apoptosis, cell cycle arrest, and tumor suppression. At the molecular level, we found that a variety of genes associated with cyclic AMP, G protein-coupled receptor, and cancer signaling pathways contributed to Notch1-mediated tumor suppression. We observed that the expression of somatostatin (SST) was dramatically induced by Notch1 signaling activation, which was accompanied by enhanced expression of the cognate SST receptor subtype 1 (SSTR1) and SSTR2. Certain genes, such as tumor protein 63 (TP63, p63), were upregulated, whereas others, such as B-cell lymphoma 2 (BCL-2), Myc, Akt, and STAT3, were downregulated. Subsequently, knockdown of Notch1-induced SST reversed Notch1-induced decrease of BCL-2 and increase of p63, indicating that Notch1-induced tumor suppression may be partly through upregulating SST signaling. Our findings support a possible crosstalk between Notch signaling and SST signaling. Moreover, Notch-induced SSTR activation could enhance SSTR-targeted cancer chemotherapy. Valproic acid (VPA), a histone deacetylase inhibitor, suppressed cell growth and upregulated the expression of Notch1 and SSTR2. A combination therapy with VPA and the SSTR2-targeting cytotoxic conjugate CPT-SST strongly led to greater suppression, as compared to each alone. Our findings thus provide us with a promising clinical opportunity for enhanced cancer therapy using combinations of Notch1-activating agents and SSTR2-targeting agents.
Notch1 signaling; Cervical cancer; Tumor suppression; SST signaling; Receptor-targeted therapy
We investigated the retinal disease due to mutations in the retinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator (RPGR) gene in human patients and in an Rpgr conditional knockout (cko) mouse model.
XLRP patients with RPGR-ORF15 mutations (n = 35, ages at first visit 5–72 years) had clinical examinations, and rod and cone perimetry. Rpgr-cko mice, in which the proximal promoter and first exon were deleted ubiquitously, were back-crossed onto a BALB/c background, and studied with optical coherence tomography and electroretinography (ERG). Retinal histopathology was performed on a subset.
Different patterns of rod and cone dysfunction were present in patients. Frequently, there were midperipheral losses with residual rod and cone function in central and peripheral retina. Longitudinal data indicated that central rod loss preceded peripheral rod losses. Central cone-only vision with no peripheral function was a late stage. Less commonly, patients had central rod and cone dysfunction, but preserved, albeit abnormal, midperipheral rod and cone vision. Rpgr-cko mice had progressive retinal degeneration detectable in the first months of life. ERGs indicated relatively equal rod and cone disease. At late stages, there was greater inferior versus superior retinal degeneration.
RPGR mutations lead to progressive loss of rod and cone vision, but show different patterns of residual photoreceptor disease expression. Knowledge of the patterns should guide treatment strategies. Rpgr-cko mice had onset of degeneration at relatively young ages and progressive photoreceptor disease. The natural history in this model will permit preclinical proof-of-concept studies to be designed and such studies should advance progress toward human therapy.
Progress in treating canine RPGR disease prompted us to characterize patients with RPGR-ORF15 mutations and provide a detailed natural history of a novel Rpgr-mutant mouse for further proof-of-concept experiments.
Bioinformatic tools and databases for glycobiology and glycomics research are playing increasingly important roles in functional studies. However, to verify hypotheses generated by computational glycomics with empirical functional assays is only an emerging field. In this study, we predicted glycan epitopes expressed by a cancer-derived mucin, MUC1, by computational glycomics. MUC1 is expressed by tumor cells with a deficiency in glycosylation. Although numerous diagnostic reagents and cancer vaccines have been designed based on abnormally glycosylated MUC1 sequences, the glycan and peptide sequences responsible for immune responses in vivo are poorly understood. The immunogenicity of synthetic MUC1 glycopeptides bearing Tn or sialyl-Tn antigens have been studied in mouse models, while authentic glyco-epitopes expressed by tumor cells remain unclear. To examine the immunogenicity of authentic cancer derived MUC1 glyco-epitopes, we expressed membrane bound forms of MUC1 tandem repeats in Jurkat, a mutant cancer cell line deficient of mucin-type core-1 β1-3 galactosyltransferase activity, and immunized mice with cancer cells expressing authentic MUC1 glyco-epitopes. Antibody responses to individual glyco-epitopes were determined by chemically synthesized candidate MUC1 glycopeptides predicted through computational glycomics. Monoclonal antibodies can be generated toward chemically synthesized glycopeptide sequences. With RPAPGS(Tn)TAPPAHG as an example, a monoclonal antibody 16A, showed 25-fold higher binding to glycosylated peptide (EC50=9.278±1.059 ng/ml) compared to its non-glycosylated form (EC50=247.3±16.29 ng/ml) as measured by ELISA experiments with plate-bound peptides. A library of monoclonal antibodies toward authentic MUC1 glycopeptide epitopes may be a valuable tool for studying glycan and peptide sequences in cancer, as well as reagents for diagnosis and therapy.
computational glycomics; MUC1; glycopeptide; monoclonal antibodies; cancer; immunopathogenesis; immunotherapy
IκB kinase (IKK) complex, the master kinase for NF-κB activation, contains two kinase subunits, IKKα and IKKβ. In addition to mediating NF-κB signaling by phosphorylating IκB proteins during inflammatory and immune responses, the activation of the IKK complex also responds to various stimuli to regulate diverse functions independently of NF-κB. Although these two kinases share structural and biochemical similarities, different sub-cellular localization and phosphorylation targets between IKKα and IKKβ account for their distinct physiological and pathological roles. While IKKβ is predominantly cytoplasmic, IKKα has been found to shuttle between the cytoplasm and the nucleus. The nuclear-specific roles of IKKα have brought increasing complexity to its biological function. This review highlights major advances in the studies of the nuclear functions of IKKα and the mechanisms of IKKα nuclear translocation. Understanding the nuclear activity is essential for targeting IKKα for therapeutics.
Nuclear IKKα; NF-κB; Gene transcription; Tumor progression
Activation of the epidermal growth factor pathway is important in prostate cancer development and the transcription of androgen receptor regulated genes. This study evaluated the potential activity of lapatinib in men with biochemically-relapsed androgen-dependent (stage D0) prostate cancer.
Patients with a rising PSA after primary therapy for prostate cancer were enrolled. A PSA doubling time (PSADT) <12 months was required. Lapatinib was administered at 1,500 mg orally daily. Outcome measures were changes in PSA kinetics. Primary tumor blocks were obtained and assessed for EGFR expression, EGFR Q787Q polymorphism, and Kras 38 mutational status.
49 patients were enrolled (14 ineligible), resulting in 35 pts for analysis. No PSA response was observed; best response was stable disease (n=28, 80.0%). Pre-treatment average slope was 0.19 log (PSA)/month (PSADT=3.70 months), in contrast to on-treatment average slope of 0.13 log (PSA)/month (PSADT=5.44 months) using linear mixed effects models (p=0.006). Median progression-free survival (PFS) was 17.4 months for the high EGFR group and 6.0 months for the low EGFR group (p=0.50). Patients with Kras 38 mutation had shorter PFS than those without Kras 38 mutation (p=0.09).
Although no PSA responses (primary endpoint) was observed, lapatinib may have biologic activity in men with stage D0 prostate cancer as evidenced by a decrease in PSA slope in this non-randomized study. Additional trials assessing the role of EGFR overexpression and Kras wild type status in prostate cancer should be investigated.
Epidermal growth factor receptor; tyrosine kinase inhibitors; clinical trial
Markov state models have been widely used to study conformational changes of biological macromolecules. These models are built from short timescale simulations and then propagated to extract long timescale dynamics. However, the solvent information in molecular simulations are often ignored in current methods, because of the large number of solvent molecules in a system and the indistinguishability of solvent molecules upon their exchange.
We present a solvent signature that compactly summarizes the solvent distribution in the high-dimensional data, and then define a distance metric between different configurations using this signature. We next incorporate the solvent information into the construction of Markov state models and present a fast geometric clustering algorithm which combines both the solute-based and solvent-based distances.
We have tested our method on several different molecular dynamical systems, including alanine dipeptide, carbon nanotube, and benzene rings. With the new solvent-based signatures, we are able to identify different solvent distributions near the solute. Furthermore, when the solute has a concave shape, we can also capture the water number inside the solute structure. Finally we have compared the performances of different Markov state models. The experiment results show that our approach improves the existing methods both in the computational running time and the metastability.
In this paper we have initiated an study to build Markov state models for molecular dynamical systems with solvent degrees of freedom. The methods we described should also be broadly applicable to a wide range of biomolecular simulation analyses.
Mutations at amino acids 143, 148, and 155 in HIV-1 integrase (IN) define primary resistance pathways in subjects failing raltegravir (RAL)-containing treatments. Although each pathway appears to be genetically distinct, shifts in the predominant resistant virus population have been reported under continued drug pressure. To better understand this dynamic, we characterized the RAL susceptibility of 200 resistant viruses, and we performed sequential clonal analysis for selected cases. Patient viruses containing Y143R, Q148R, or Q148H mutations consistently exhibited larger reductions in RAL susceptibility than patient viruses containing N155H mutations. Sequential analyses of virus populations from three subjects revealed temporal shifts in subpopulations representing N155H, Y143R, or Q148H escape pathways. Evaluation of molecular clones isolated from different time points demonstrated that Y143R and Q148H variants exhibited larger reductions in RAL susceptibility and higher IN-mediated replication capacity (RC) than N155H variants within the same subject. Furthermore, shifts from the N155H pathway to either the Q148R or H pathway or the Y143R pathway were dependent on the amino acid substitution at position 148 and the secondary mutations in Y143R- or Q148R- or H-containing variants and correlated with reductions in RAL susceptibility and restorations in RC. Our observations in patient viruses were confirmed by analyzing site-directed mutations. In summary, viruses that acquire mutations defining the 143 or 148 escape pathways are less susceptible to RAL and exhibit greater RC than viruses containing 155 pathway mutations. These selective pressures result in the displacement of N155H variants by 143 or 148 variants under continued drug exposure.
Cytoplasmic male sterility (CMS) in pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) has been associated with novel genes in the mitochondria, such as orf507 and Ψatp6-2. Plant sterility has been proved to result from the rearrangement of the mitochondrial genome. Previous studies have demonstrated that orf507 is co-transcribed with the cox II gene, and Ψatp6-2 is truncated at the 3′ region of the atp6-2 that is found in the maintainer line. Until this time, little has been known about the relationship between the novel gene and the function of its corresponding enzyme in mitochondria from the CMS pepper line. Moreover, the aberrant function of the mitochondrial enzymes is seldom reported in pepper. In this study, we observed that anther abortion occurred after the tetrad stage in the CMS line (HW203A), which was accompanied by premature programmed cell death (PCD) in the tapetum. The spatiotemporal expression patterns of orf507 and Ψatp6-2 were analyzed together with the corresponding enzyme activities to investigate the interactions of the genes and mitochondrial enzymes. The two genes were both highly expressed in the anther. The orf507 was down-regulated in HW203A (CMS line), with nearly no expression in HW203B (the maintainer line). In contrast, the cytochrome c oxidase activity in HW203A showed the opposite trend, reaching its highest peak at the tetrad stage when compared with HW203B at the same stage. The Ψatp6-2 in the CMS line was also down-regulated, but it was up-regulated in the maintainer line. The corresponding F1Fo-ATPase activity in the CMS line was gradually decreased along with the development of the anther, which showed the same trend for Ψatp6-2 gene expression. On the contrary, with up-regulated gene expression of atp6-2 in the maintainer line, the F1Fo-ATPase activity sharply decreased after the initial development stage, but gradually increased following the tetrad stage, which was contrary to what happened in the CMS line. Taken together, all these results may provide evidence for the involvement of aberrant mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase and F1Fo-ATPase in CMS pepper anther abortion. Moreover, the novel orf507 and Ψatp6-2 genes in the mitochondria may be involved in the dysfunction of the cytochrome c oxidase and F1Fo-ATPase, respectively, which are responsible for the abortion of anthers in the CMS line.
Capsicum annuum L.; cytoplasmic male sterility; orf507; cytochrome c oxidase; Ψatp6-2; F1Fo-ATPase
Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) remains poor among heroin users, even after being treated with methadone. Evidence regarding self-reported psychopathology and HRQoL in heroin users is also limited. The present study aimed to investigate the association between self-reported psychopathology and HRQoL in Asian heroin users treated with methadone.
Thirty-nine heroin users treated with methadone and 39 healthy controls were recruited. Both groups self-reported on demographic data, the Brief Symptom Rating Scale, EuroQoL-5D, and World Health Organization Questionnaire on Quality of Life: Short Form. We compared clinical characteristics, psychopathology, and HRQoL between the two study groups. Correlation and regression analyses were conducted to explore the association between psychopathology and HRQoL in the heroin user group.
Heroin users had more psychopathology and worse HRQoL than healthy controls. The HRQoL of heroin users had significant correlations with Brief Symptom Rating Scale scores. HRQoL could be predicted by depression, anxiety, paranoia, and additional symptoms (ie, poor appetite and sleep difficulties) independently.
Self-reported psychopathology, depression, anxiety, paranoia, poor appetite, and sleep difficulties had a negative impact on each domain of HRQoL among heroin users treated with methadone. The importance of the environmental domain of HRQoL is discussed. Clinicians should recognize comorbid psychiatric symptoms early on to improve HRQoL in heroin users.
heroin abuse; Brief Symptom Rating Scale; World Health Organization questionnaire on quality of life
Assembly of nanowires into ordered macroscopic structures with new functionalities has been a recent focus. In this Letter, we report a new route for ordering hydrophilic Ag nanowires with high aspect ratio by flowing through a glass capillary. The present glass capillary with well-defined silver nanowire films inside can serve as a portable and reusable substrate for surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS), which may provide a versatile and promising platform for detecting mixture pollutions. By controlling the flow parameters of nanowire suspensions, initially random Ag nanowires can be aligned to form nanowire arrays with tunable density, forming cambered nanowire films adhered onto the inner wall of the capillary. Compared with the planar ordered Ag nanowire films by the Langmuir-Blodgett (LB) technique, the cambered nanowire films show better SERS performance.
We previously reported that adoption of an “open” envelope glycoprotein (Env) to expose the CD4 binding site for efficient receptor binding and infection of cell targets such as macrophages that express low levels of the receptor represents an early event in the process of coreceptor switch in two rapidly progressing (RP) R5 SHIVSF162P3N-infected rhesus macaques, releasing or reducing Env structural constraints that have been suggested to limit the pathways available for a change in coreceptor preference. Here we extended these studies to two additional RP monkeys with coreceptor switch and three without to confirm and identify additional factors that facilitated the process of phenotypic conversion.
We found that regardless of coreceptor switching, R5 viruses in SHIVSF162P3N-infected RP macaques evolved over time to infect macrophages more efficiently; this was accompanied by increased sCD4 sensitivity, with structural changes in the CD4 binding site, the V3 loop and/or the fusion domain of their Envs that are suggestive of better CD4 contact, CCR5 usage and/or virus fusion. However, sCD4-sensitive variants with improved CD4 binding were observed only in RPs with coreceptor switch. Furthermore, cumulative viral load was higher in RPs with than in those without phenotypic switch, with the latter maintaining a longer period of seroconversion.
Our data suggest that the increased virus replication in the RPs with R5-to-X4 conversion increased the rate of virus evolution and reduction in the availability of target cells with optimal CD4 expression heightened the competition for binding to the receptor. In the absence of immunological restrictions, variants that adopt an “open” Env to expose the CD4 binding site for better CD4 use are selected, allowing structural changes that confer CXCR4-use to be manifested. Viral load, change in target cell population during the course of infection and host immune response therefore are interdependent variables that influence R5 virus evolution and coreceptor switch in SHIVSF162P3N-infected rhesus macaques. Because an "open" Env conformation also renders the virus more susceptible to antibody neutralization, our findings help to explain the infrequent and late appearance of X4 virus in HIV-1 infection when the immune system deteriorates.
R5 SHIV; Coreceptor switch; CD4 binding; Macrophage infection
AIM: To conduct a meta-analysis to determine the safety and efficacy of laparoscopic liver resection (LLR) and open liver resection (OLR) for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).
METHODS: PubMed (Medline), EMBASE and Science Citation Index Expanded and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials in the Cochrane Library were searched systematically to identify relevant comparative studies reporting outcomes for both LLR and OLR for HCC between January 1992 and February 2012. Two authors independently assessed the trials for inclusion and extracted the data. Meta-analysis was performed using Review Manager Version 5.0 software (The Cochrane Collaboration, Oxford, United Kingdom). Pooled odds ratios (OR) or weighted mean differences (WMD) with 95%CI were calculated using either ﬁxed effects (Mantel-Haenszel method) or random effects models (DerSimonian and Laird method). Evaluated endpoints were operative outcomes (operation time, intraoperative blood loss, blood transfusion requirement), postoperative outcomes (liver failure, cirrhotic decompensation/ascites, bile leakage, postoperative bleeding, pulmonary complications, intraabdominal abscess, mortality, hospital stay and oncologic outcomes (positive resection margins and tumor recurrence).
RESULTS: Fifteen eligible non-randomized studies were identiﬁed, out of which, 9 high-quality studies involving 550 patients were included, with 234 patients in the LLR group and 316 patients in the OLR group. LLR was associated with signiﬁcantly lower intraoperative blood loss, based on six studies with 333 patients [WMD: -129.48 mL; 95%CI: -224.76-(-34.21) mL; P = 0.008]. Seven studies involving 416 patients were included to assess blood transfusion requirement between the two groups. The LLR group had lower blood transfusion requirement (OR: 0.49; 95%CI: 0.26-0.91; P = 0.02). While analyzing hospital stay, six studies with 333 patients were included. Patients in the LLR group were found to have shorter hospital stay [WMD: -3.19 d; 95%CI: -4.09-(-2.28) d; P < 0.00001] than their OLR counterpart. Seven studies including 416 patients were pooled together to estimate the odds of developing postoperative ascites in the patient groups. The LLR group appeared to have a lower incidence of postoperative ascites (OR: 0.32; 95%CI: 0.16-0.61; P = 0.0006) as compared with OLR patients. Similarly, fewer patients had liver failure in the LLR group than in the OLR group (OR: 0.15; 95%CI: 0.02-0.95; P = 0.04). However, no significant differences were found between the two approaches with regards to operation time [WMD: 4.69 min; 95%CI: -22.62-32 min; P = 0.74], bile leakage (OR: 0.55; 95%CI: 0.10-3.12; P = 0.50), postoperative bleeding (OR: 0.54; 95%CI: 0.20-1.45; P = 0.22), pulmonary complications (OR: 0.43; 95%CI: 0.18-1.04; P = 0.06), intra-abdominal abscesses (OR: 0.21; 95%CI: 0.01-4.53; P = 0.32), mortality (OR: 0.46; 95%CI: 0.14-1.51; P = 0.20), presence of positive resection margins (OR: 0.59; 95%CI: 0.21-1.62; P = 0.31) and tumor recurrence (OR: 0.95; 95%CI: 0.62-1.46; P = 0.81).
CONCLUSION: LLR appears to be a safe and feasible option for resection of HCC in selected patients based on current evidence. However, further appropriately designed randomized controlled trials should be undertaken to ascertain these findings.
Hepatocellular carcinoma; Laparoscopy; Open liver resection; Hepatectomy; Meta-analysis
A retrospective study was conducted at two medical centers in Taiwan to evaluate the clinical characteristics, outcomes, and risk factors for mortality among patients treated with a carbapenem for bacteremia caused by extended-spectrum-beta-lactamase (ESBL)-producing organisms. A total of 251 patients with bacteremia caused by ESBL-producing Escherichia coli and Klebsiella pneumoniae isolates treated by a carbapenem were identified. Among these ESBL-producing isolates, rates of susceptibility to ertapenem (MICs ≤ 0.25 μg/ml) were 83.8% and 76.4%, respectively; those to meropenem were 100% and 99.3%, respectively; and those to imipenem were 100% and 97.9%, respectively. There were no significant differences in the critical illness rate (P = 0.1) or sepsis-related mortality rate (P = 0.2) for patients with bacteremia caused by ESBL-producing K. pneumoniae (140 isolates, 55.8%) and E. coli (111 isolates, 44.2%). Multivariate analysis of variables related to sepsis-related mortality revealed that the presence of severe sepsis (odds ratio [OR], 15.9; 95% confidence interval [CI], 5.84 to 43.34; P < 0.001), hospital-onset bacteremia (OR, 4.65; 95% CI, 1.42 to 15.24; P = 0.01), and ertapenem-nonsusceptible isolates (OR, 5.12; 95% CI, 2.04 to 12.88; P = 0.001) were independent risk factors. The patients receiving inappropriate therapy had a higher sepsis-related mortality than those with appropriate therapy (P = 0.002), irrespective of ertapenem, imipenem, or meropenem therapy. Infections due to the ertapenem-susceptible isolates (MICs ≤ 0.25 μg/ml) were associated with a more favorable outcome than those due to ertapenem-nonsusceptible isolates (MICs > 0.25 μg/ml), if treated by a carbapenem. However, the mortality for patients with bacteremic episodes due to isolates with MICs of ≤0.5 μg/ml was similar to the mortality for those whose isolates had MICs of >0.5 μg/ml (P = 0.8). Such a finding supports the rationale of the current CLSI 2011 criteria for carbapenems for Enterobacteriaceae.
Rapid assays are still needed to detect rifabutin (RFB) susceptibility for proper tuberculosis treatment. To assess the use of the GenoType MTBDRplus assay and subsequent rpoB gene sequencing on detection of RFB susceptibility, we analyzed 800 multidrug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolates, and 13% (104/800) were RFB susceptible. Of the 104 RFB-susceptible isolates, 71 (68.3%) isolates were rapidly identified using two molecular assays, while the remaining isolates could be determined using conventional drug-susceptibility testing according to the clinician's decision.
Background. Mucosal or oral tolerance, an established method for inducing low-risk antigen-specific hyporesponsiveness, has not been investigated in vascularized composite allograft (VCA) research. We studied its effects on recipient immune responses and VCA rejection. Methods. Lewis rats (n = 12; TREATED) received seven daily intrajejunal treatments of 5 × 107 splenocytes from semiallogeneic Lewis-Brown-Norway rats (LBN) or vehicle (n = 11; SHAM). Recipients' immune responses were assessed by mixed lymphocyte reaction (MLR) against donor antigen and controls. Other Lewis (n = 8; TREATED/VCA) received LBN hindlimb VCA and daily intrajejunal treatments of 5 × 107 LBN splenocytes, or LBN VCA without treatment (n = 5; SHAM/VCA), until VCAs rejected. Recipients' immune responses were characterised and VCAs biopsied for histopathology. Immunosuppressants were not used.
Results. LBN-specific hyporesponsiveness was induced only in treated Lewis recipients. Treatment significantly reduced MLR alloreactivity, significantly reduced VCA rejection on histopathology, and significantly delayed clinical VCA rejection (P < 0.0005; TREATED/VCA mean 9.6 versus 6.0 days for SHAM/VCA). Treatment significantly increased immunosuppressive IL-10/IL-4/TGF-β production and significantly decreased proinflammatory IFN-γ/TNF-α. Conclusion. Jejunal exposure to antigen conferred donor specific hyporesponsiveness that delayed VCA rejection. This method may offer a low-risk adjunctive treatment option to help protect VCAs from rejection.