The prevalence of cutaneous malignant melanoma (CMM) has increased significantly in most Caucasian populations in recent decades. Both genetic and environment are significant risk factors involved in the development of CMM. A germline mutation in the Syntaxin 17 (STX17) gene was recently identified in horses causing premature hair gray and associated with susceptibility to melanoma. We hypothesized that common germline variants in the STX17 gene might be associated with predisposition to human CMM or might interact with other melanoma risk genes. We conducted a case-control study by genotyping 26 tagging single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) across the STX17 gene region in an Australian sample and performed logistic regression analysis for predicting the possible SNP interactions in a combined dataset. Our results do not support an association between CMM and any of the STX17 SNPs and provide no evidence for interactions between the melanoma risk SNP rs910873 on chromosome 20 and any of the STX17 SNPs. We conclude that common variants in the STX17 gene region do not play a key role in the pathogenesis of human melanoma.
Syntaxin 17; melanoma; polymorphisms
Control of blood vessel tone is central to vascular homeostasis. Here, we show that metabolism of tryptophan to kynurenine by indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) expressed in endothelial cells contributes to arterial vessel relaxation and the control of blood pressure. Infection of mice with malarial parasites (Plasmodium berghei), and experimental induction of endotoxemia, caused endothelial expression of IDO, resulting in decreased plasma tryptophan, increased kynurenine, and hypotension. Pharmacological inhibition of IDO increased blood pressure in systemically inflamed mice, but not in mice deficient for IDO or interferon-γ, which is required for IDO induction. Tryptophan dilated pre-constricted porcine coronary arteries only if active IDO and an intact endothelium were both present. Kynurenine dose-dependently decreased blood pressure in spontaneously hypertensive rats, inhibited contraction of arteries, and relaxed pre-constricted rings endothelium-independently. Arterial relaxation by kynurenine was mediated by activation of the adenylate and soluble guanylate cyclase pathways.
During inflammation, myeloperoxidase (MPO) released by circulating leukocytes accumulates within the subendothelial matrix by binding to and transcytosing the vascular endothelium. Oxidative reactions catalyzed by subendothelial-localized MPO are implicated as a cause of endothelial dysfunction in vascular disease. While the subendothelial matrix is a key target for MPO-derived oxidants during disease, the implications of this damage for endothelial morphology and signaling are largely unknown. We found that endothelial-transcytosed MPO produced hypochlorous acid (HOCl) that reacted locally with the subendothelial matrix and induced covalent cross-linking of the adhesive matrix protein fibronectin. Real-time biosensor and live cell imaging studies revealed that HOCl-mediated matrix oxidation triggered rapid membrane retraction from the substratum and adjacent cells (de-adhesion). De-adhesion was linked with the alteration of Tyr-118 phosphorylation of paxillin, a key adhesion-dependent signaling process, as well as Rho kinase-dependent myosin light chain-2 phosphorylation. De-adhesion dynamics were dependent on the contractile state of cells, with myosin II inhibition with blebbistatin attenuating the rate of membrane retraction. Rho kinase inhibition with Y-27632 also conferred protection, but not during the initial phase of membrane retraction, which was driven by pre-existing actomyosin tensile stress. Notably, diversion of MPO from HOCl production by thiocyanate or nitrite attenuated de-adhesion and associated signaling responses, despite the latter substrate supporting MPO-catalyzed fibronectin nitration. These data show that subendothelial-localized MPO employs a novel “outside-in” mode of redox signaling, involving HOCl-mediated matrix oxidation. These MPO-catalyzed oxidative events are likely to play a previously unrecognized role in altering endothelial integrity and signaling during inflammatory vascular disorders.
► MPO binds to and mediates HOCl-dependent oxidation of the subendothelial matrix. ► HOCl-mediated matrix oxidation disrupts cell-matrix contacts, inducing de-adhesion. ► De-adhesion is driven by unopposed actomyosin contractile forces. ► De-adhesion is linked with rapid changes in adhesion-dependent signaling. ► MPO alters endothelial integrity and signaling by HOCl-mediated matrix oxidation.
BAH, 4-aminobenzoic acid hydrazide; PP2, 4-amino-5-(4-chlorophenyl)-7-(dimethylethyl)pyrazolo[3,4–d]pyrimidine; ECs, bovine aortic endothelial cells; FAK, focal adhesion kinase; HBSS, Hank's balanced salt solution; HOCl, hypochlorous acid; HOSCN, hypothiocyanous acid; Met, methionine; MPO, myeloperoxidase; MLC-2, myosin light chain II; NO, nitric oxide; NO2−, nitrite; •NO2, nitrogen dioxide radical; PBS, phosphate-buffered saline, SCN−, thiocyanate; Y-27632, (+)-(R)-trans-4-(1-aminoethyl)-N-(4-pyridyl)cyclohexanecarboxamide dihydrochloride; Myeloperoxidase; Extracellular matrix; Endothelial dysfunction; Redox signaling; Free radicals
Infiltration of Ly6Chi monocytes from the blood is a hallmark of viral encephalitis. In mice with lethal encephalitis caused by West Nile virus (WNV), an emerging neurotropic flavivirus, inhibition of Ly6Chi monocyte trafficking into the brain by anti-very late antigen (VLA)-4 integrin antibody blockade at the time of first weight loss and leukocyte influx resulted in long-term survival of up to 60% of infected mice, with subsequent sterilizing immunity. This treatment had no effect on viral titers but appeared to be due to inhibition of Ly6Chi macrophage immigration. Although macrophages isolated from the infected brain induced WNV-specific CD4+ T-cell proliferation, T cells did not directly contribute to pathology, but are likely to be important in viral control, as antibody-mediated T-cell depletion could not reproduce the therapeutic benefit of anti-VLA-4. Instead, 70% of infiltrating inflammatory monocyte-derived macrophages were found to be making nitric oxide (NO). Furthermore, aminoguanidine-mediated inhibition of induced NO synthase activity in infiltrating macrophages significantly prolonged survival, indicating involvement of NO in the immunopathology. These data show for the first time the therapeutic effects of temporally targeting pathogenic NO-producing macrophages during neurotropic viral encephalitis.
Neurotropic virus; Flavivirus; Inflammatory monocytes; West Nile virus encephalitis; Macrophage infiltration; VLA-4; Integrins; Nitric oxide
The Happy Life Club™ is an intervention that utilises health coaches trained in behavioural change and motivational interviewing techniques to assist with the management of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) in primary care settings in China. Health coaches will support participants to improve modifiable risk factors and adhere to effective self-management treatments associated with T2DM.
A cluster randomised controlled trial involving 22 Community Health Centres (CHCs) in Fengtai District of Beijing, China. CHCs will be randomised into a control or intervention group, facilitating recruitment of at least 1320 individual participants with T2DM into the study. Participants in the intervention group will receive a combination of both telephone and face-to-face health coaching over 18 months, in addition to usual care received by the control group. Health coaching will be performed by CHC doctors and nurses certified in coach-assisted chronic disease management. Outcomes will be assessed at baseline and again at 6, 12 and 18 months by means of a clinical health check and self-administered questionnaire. The primary outcome measure is HbA1c level. Secondary outcomes include metabolic, physiological and psychological variables.
This cluster RCT has been developed to suit the Chinese health care system and will contribute to the evidence base for the management of patients with T2DM. With a strong focus on self-management and health coach support, the study has the potential to be adapted to other chronic diseases, as well as other regions of China.
Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN01010526
We conducted a genome-wide association pooling study for cutaneous melanoma and performed validation in samples totalling 2019 cases and 2105 controls. Using pooling we identified a novel melanoma risk locus on chromosome 20 (rs910873, rs1885120), with replication in two further samples (combined P <1 × 10-15). The odds ratio is 1.75 (1.53, 2.01), with evidence for stronger association in early onset cases.
Oxidative injury and dysfunction of the vascular endothelium is an early and causal feature of many vascular diseases and single antioxidant strategies to prevent vascular injury have met with mixed results. Here we report that induction of a metabolic stress response with AMP kinase prevents oxidative endothelial cell injury. This response is characterized by stabilization of the mitochondrion and increased mitochondrial biogenesis resulting in attenuation of oxidative c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) activation. We report that peroxisome proliferator coactivator 1α (PGC-1α) is a key downstream target of AMPK that is both necessary and sufficient for the metabolic stress response and JNK attenuation. Moreover, induction of the metabolic stress response in vivo attenuates ROS-mediated JNK activation and endothelial dysfunction in response to angiotensin II in wild-type mice, but not animals lacking either the endothelial isoform of AMPK or PGC-1α. These data highlight AMPK and PGC-1α as potential therapeutic targets for the amelioration of endothelial dysfunction and, as a consequence, vascular disease.
Endometriosis is a polygenic disease with a complex and multifactorial aetiology that affects 8–10% of women of reproductive age. Epidemiological data support a link between endometriosis and cancers of the reproductive tract. Fibroblast growth factor receptor 2 (FGFR2) has recently been implicated in both endometrial and breast cancer. Our previous studies on endometriosis identified significant linkage to a novel susceptibility locus on chromosome 10q26 and the FGFR2 gene maps within this linkage region. We therefore hypothesized that variation in FGFR2 may contribute to the risk of endometriosis.
We genotyped 13 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) densely covering a 27 kb region within intron 2 of FGFR2 including two SNPs (rs2981582 and rs1219648) significantly associated with breast cancer and a total 40 tagSNPs across 150 kb of the FGFR2 gene. SNPs were genotyped in 958 endometriosis cases and 959 unrelated controls.
We found no evidence for association between endometriosis and FGFR2 intron 2 SNPs or SNP haplotypes and no evidence for association between endometriosis and variation across the FGFR2 gene.
Common variation in the breast-cancer implicated intron 2 and other highly plausible causative candidate regions of FGFR2 do not appear to be a major contributor to endometriosis susceptibility in our large Australian sample.
endometriosis; fibroblast growth factor receptor 2; single nucleotide polymorphism; haplotype