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1.  Involvement of Reactive Oxygen Species in Apoptosis Induced by Pharmacological Inhibition of Protein Kinase CK2 
It has been reported that inhibition of protein kinase CK2 (CK2) with antisense oligodeoxynucleotides (ODN) is a potent inducer of apoptosis in cancer cells but not in normal cells. In this regard, the apoptotic-inducing effect is attributed to the catalytic activity of the enzyme, which phosphorylates proapoptotic proteins to inhibit their functions. In this study we investigate the role of intracellular redox status in the proapoptotic activity of CK2 inhibition in human leukemia Cem cells. We provide evidence that inhibition ofCK2 activity induces apoptotic cell death as evident by activation of caspase 3, DNA fragmentation, and phosphatidylserine externalization. Inhibition of CK2 resulted in a significant increase in intracellular hydrogen peroxide production, which we show as a critical mediator of apoptosis. To that end, apoptotic hallmarks, like DNA fragmentation and phosphatidylserine externalization, were blocked with the specific hydrogen peroxide scavenger catalase. We also show that inhibition of CK2 reduces cytosolic intracellular superoxide, a precursor of hydrogen peroxide. In summary, decreasing CK2 activity increases intracellular hydrogen peroxide, creating an intracellular environment conducive for death execution. Taken together, these data provide information on novel pathways involved in CK2 biology with implications for effective tools against drug-resistant tumors.
PMCID: PMC4392777  PMID: 19723109
human leukemia cells; CK2; apoptosis; ROS
2.  Effect of frozen storage on the characteristics of a developed and commercial fish sausages 
The effect of frozen storage on the physiochemical, chemical and microbial characteristics of two types of fish sausages was studied. Fish sausages developed (DFS) with a spice-sugar formulation and commercial fish sausages (CFS) were stored at −20 °C for 3 months. Fresh DFS contained 12.22% lipids and had a 3.53 cfu/g total bacteria count (TBC) whereas, CFS contained 5.5% lipids and had a 4.81 cfu/g TBC. During storage, TBC decreased significantly (p < 0.05) in DFS whereas it did not change (p > 0.05) in CFS. A peroxide value (PV) was not detectable until week four and eight of storage in CFS and DFS, respectively. The salt-soluble proteins (SSP) level was stable in DFS but in CFS it declined significantly (p < 0.05). Colour values did not change significantly (p > 0.05) in both sausage types. This study showed that the effect of storage at −20 °C on fish sausages characteristics varied between formulations and depended on the ingredients of fish sausages.
PMCID: PMC3791238  PMID: 24426029
Color; Fish; Frozen storage; Rancidity; Sausages
3.  Heritability and Genetic Advance among Chili Pepper Genotypes for Heat Tolerance and Morphophysiological Characteristics 
The Scientific World Journal  2014;2014:308042.
High temperature tolerance is an important component of adaptation to arid and semiarid cropping environment in chili pepper. Two experiments were carried out to study the genetic variability among chili pepper for heat tolerance and morphophysiological traits and to estimate heritability and genetic advance expected from selection. There was a highly significant variation among the genotypes in response to high temperature (CMT), photosynthesis rate, plant height, disease incidence, fruit length, fruit weight, number of fruits, and yield per plant. At 5% selection intensity, high genetic advance as percent of the mean (>20%) was observed for CMT, photosynthesis rate, fruit length, fruit weight, number of fruits, and yield per plant. Similarly, high heritability (>60%) was also observed indicating the substantial effect of additive gene more than the environmental effect. Yield per plant showed strong to moderately positive correlations (r = 0.23–0.56) at phenotypic level while at genotypic level correlation coefficient ranged from 0.16 to 0.72 for CMT, plant height, fruit length, and number of fruits. Cluster analysis revealed eight groups and Group VIII recorded the highest CMT and yield. Group IV recorded 13 genotypes while Groups II, VII, and VIII recorded one each. The results showed that the availability of genetic variance could be useful for exploitation through selection for further breeding purposes.
PMCID: PMC4248334  PMID: 25478590
4.  Characterization of Free and Porous Silicon-Encapsulated Superparamagnetic Iron Oxide Nanoparticles as Platforms for the Development of Theranostic Vaccines 
Tracking vaccine components from the site of injection to their destination in lymphatic tissue, and simultaneously monitoring immune effects, sheds light on the influence of vaccine components on particle and immune cell trafficking and therapeutic efficacy. In this study, we create a hybrid particle vaccine platform comprised of porous silicon (pSi) and superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONs). The impact of nanoparticle size and mode of presentation on magnetic resonance contrast enhancement are examined. SPION-enhanced relaxivity increased as the core diameter of the nanoparticle increased, while encapsulation of SPIONs within a pSi matrix had only minor effects on T2 and no significant effect on T2* relaxation. Following intravenous injection of single and hybrid particles, there was an increase in negative contrast in the spleen, with changes in contrast being slightly greater for free compared to silicon encapsulated SPIONs. Incubation of bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (BMDC) with pSi microparticles loaded with SPIONs, SIINFEKL peptide, and lipopolysaccharide stimulated immune cell interactions and interferon gamma production in OT-1 TCR transgenic CD8+ T cells. Overall, the hybrid particle platform enabled presentation of a complex payload that was traceable, stimulated functional T cell and BMDC interactions, and resolved in cellular activation of T cells in response to a specific antigen.
PMCID: PMC4057016  PMID: 24932409
porous silicon; iron oxide; magnetic resonance; antigen; adjuvant; vaccine
5.  Multivalent Presentation of MPL by Porous Silicon Microparticles Favors T Helper 1 Polarization Enhancing the Anti-Tumor Efficacy of Doxorubicin Nanoliposomes 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(4):e94703.
Porous silicon (pSi) microparticles, in diverse sizes and shapes, can be functionalized to present pathogen-associated molecular patterns that activate dendritic cells. Intraperitoneal injection of MPL-adsorbed pSi microparticles, in contrast to free MPL, resulted in the induction of local inflammation, reflected in the recruitment of neutrophils, eosinophils and proinflammatory monocytes, and the depletion of resident macrophages and mast cells at the injection site. Injection of microparticle-bound MPL resulted in enhanced secretion of the T helper 1 associated cytokines IFN-γ and TNF-α by peritoneal exudate and lymph node cells in response to secondary stimuli while decreasing the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10. MPL-pSi microparticles independently exhibited anti-tumor effects and enhanced tumor suppression by low dose doxorubicin nanoliposomes. Intravascular injection of the MPL-bound microparticles increased serum IL-1β levels, which was blocked by the IL-1 receptor antagonist Anakinra. The microparticles also potentiated tumor infiltration by dendritic cells, cytotoxic T lymphocytes, and F4/80+ macrophages, however, a specific reduction was observed in CD204+ macrophages.
PMCID: PMC3988134  PMID: 24736547
6.  A Study of Autoimmune Polyglandular Syndrome (APS) in Patients with Type1 Diabetes Mellitus (T1DM) Followed Up at a Teritiary Care Hospital 
Background: Type1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) results from auto- immune destruction of insulin-producing β cells and is characterized by the presence of insulitis and β-cell autoantibodies. Up to one third of patients develop an autoimmune polyglandular syndrome (APS). Presence of other autoimmune disorders in patients with T1DM has been associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Hypoglycemia resulting from concurrent hypothyroidism or adrenal crisis can be dangerous; starting replacement therapy for hypothyroidism may result in adrenal crisis if background hypocortisolism is not recognized. Early detection of antibodies and latent organ-specific dysfunction is advocated to alert physicians to take appropriate action in order to prevent full-blown disease.
Aims: The objectives of this study were to assess the concurrence of various autoimmune disorders in patients with T1DM, to review the concept and detect the overt forms of Autoimmune Thyroid Disease (AITD), Addison’s Disease (AD), Vitamin B 12, vitiligo in T1DM and to find their correlation according to age and sex of the patients.
Methods: It is a retrospective study where medical records between January 2007-June 2010 of all the patients diagnosed with T1DM, followed up at Department of Endocrinology were reviewed to find out the presence of (AD), AITD, vitiligo, Vitamin B12 deficiency and Primary Gonadal Failure, which were diagnosed clinically with available investigational procedures.
Results: A total of 100 cases of T1DM were evaluated during the present study. The age group of patients ranged from 8 to 40 years, with the average being 21.56 years. 64% of the patients were males and the rest were females. 29 % of T1DM subjects had AITD (Hashimoto’s or Graves’disease), 5% were diagnosed with Vitamin B12 deficiency, 4% had AD, and 6% showed Vitiligo. 28 % had family history of autoimmune endocrinopathy.
Conclusion: The commonest autoimmune disorder associated with T1DM found in our study was AITD. Because genetic/ autoantibodies testing is not a feasible option, it is important to screen them with best available laboratory facilities and clinical assessment in view of high prevalence of associated autoimmune conditions.
PMCID: PMC3972603  PMID: 24701486
Autoimmune endocrinopathy; Autoantibodies; Autoimmune thyroid disease; Addison’s disease; Hypothyroidism
7.  Mucoepidermoid Lung Carcinoma in Child 
Mucoepidermoid carcinoma (MEC) is a rare malignant tumor arising from the bronchial gland. A case of 6-year-old male child who presented with fever, hemoptysis and wheezing since 1month is reported. Chest X-ray showed features suggestive of foreign body with post-obstructive pneumonia and was treated for the same with medication without much improvement. Subsequently computerized tomography scan chest was carried out, which showed oval mass with speculated margin in right hilar region with distal segmental atelectasis. Bronchoscopy showed small growth with nodularity in the apical segmental bronchus of the right lower lobe with mucosal erosion and hence carried out broncho-alveolar lavage showed few atypical squamous cells. Patient underwent right lower lobectomy, which showed a grey white oval mass with solid and cystic areas in the right hilar region with extension in to the lung parenchyma. Histology of the tumor showed mixed solid and cystic areas with sheets of epidermoid cells and mucus-filled cysts of irregular size. Areas of solid growth were composed of squamoid and intermediate cells. Hence, the final diagnosis of mucoepidermoid carcinoma (MEC) intermediate grade of the lung was made. Early diagnosis can be accomplished if the clinician is alert to persistent pneumonia, coughing and tumor obstruction on image studies. MEC is a comparatively rare low-grade tumor, which reportedly carries a good prognosis with early surgical intervention.
PMCID: PMC3991955  PMID: 24761253
Lobectomy; Lung; Mucoepidermoid carcinoma; Periodic acid-Schiff
8.  Effects of cyclic equibiaxial mechanical stretch on α-BK and TRPV4 expression in equine chondrocytes 
SpringerPlus  2014;3:59.
Chondrocytes are regularly exposed to load-induced stimuli and have the capability to sense and respond to applied mechanical stress. However, the mechanisms involved in chondrocyte mechanotransduction are not clearly understood. The purpose of this study was to explore the effects of cyclic equibiaxial mechanical stretch on the expression of α-BK and TRPV4 channels.
Freshly isolated equine articular chondrocytes were subjected to mechanical stress (8% elongation at frequency of 0.5 Hz for 8 h). Western blotting was used to investigate the expression of BKCa and TRPV4 channel proteins. Mechanical stretch increased the expression of BKCa channels by 1.8 fold but TRPV4 expression was not affected.
Upregulation of BKCa channel may be the result of direct membrane stretch or elevated intracellular Ca2+.
PMCID: PMC3913796  PMID: 24516787
Chondrocyte; Mechanical stretch; TRPV4; BK channel; Mechanotransduction
9.  Activation of the Inflammasome and Enhanced Migration of Microparticle-Stimulated Dendritic Cells to the Draining Lymph Node 
Molecular pharmaceutics  2012;9(7):2049-2062.
Porous silicon microparticles presenting pathogen-associated molecular patterns mimic pathogens, enhancing internalization of the microparticles and activation of antigen presenting dendritic cells. We demonstrate abundant uptake of microparticles bound by the TLR-4 ligands LPS and MPL by murine bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (BMDC). Labeled microparticles induce concentration-dependent production of IL-1β, with inhibition by the caspase inhibitor Z-VAD-FMK supporting activation of the NLRP3-dependent inflammasome. Inoculation of BALB/c mice with ligand-bound microparticles induces a significant increase in circulating levels of IL-1β, TNF-α, and IL-6. Stimulation of BMDC with ligand-bound microparticles increases surface expression of co-stimulatory and MHC molecules, and enhances migration of BMDC to the draining lymph node. LPS-microparticles stimulate in vivo C57BL/6 BMDC and OT-1 transgenic T cell interactions in the presence of OVA SIINFEKL peptide in lymph nodes, with intact nodes imaged using two-photon microscopy. Formation of in vivo and in vitro immunological synapses between BMDC, loaded with OVA peptide and LPS-microparticles, and OT-1 T cells are presented, as well as elevated intracellular interferon gamma levels in CD8+ T cells stimulated by BMDC carrying peptide-loaded microparticles. In short, ligand-bound microparticles enhance 1) phagocytosis of microparticles; 2) BMDC inflammasome activation and up-regulation of co-stimulatory and MHC molecules; 3) cellular migration of BMDC to lymphatic tissue; and 4) cellular interactions leading to T cell activation in the presence of antigen.
PMCID: PMC3524399  PMID: 22680980
microparticle; vaccine; dendritic cell; migration; phagocytosis; atomic force microscopy; LPS; monophosphoryl lipid A
10.  Fracture of the Atlas through a Synchondrosis of Anterior Arch 
Case Reports in Radiology  2013;2013:934135.
Cervical fractures are rare in paediatric population. In younger children, cervical fractures usually occur above the level of C4; whereas in older population, fractures or dislocations more commonly involve the lower cervical spine. Greater elasticity of intervertebral ligaments and also the spinal vertebrae explains why cervical fractures in paediatric ages are rare. The injury usually results from a symmetric or asymmetric axial loading. In paediatric cases, most fractures occur through the synchondroses which are the weakest links of the atlas. The prognosis depends on the severity of the spinal cord injury. In this case, we presented an anterior fracture in synchondrosis of atlas after falling on head treated with cervical collar. There was no neurologic deficit for the following 2 years.
PMCID: PMC3847957  PMID: 24327927
11.  The Anti-Fasciolasis Properties of Silver Nanoparticles Produced by Trichoderma harzianum and Their Improvement of the Anti-Fasciolasis Drug Triclabendazole 
Recently, new strains of Fasciola demonstrated drug resistance, which increased the need for new drugs or improvement of the present drugs. Nanotechnology is expected to open some new opportunities to fight and prevent diseases using an atomic scale tailoring of materials. The ability to uncover the structure and function of biosystems at the nanoscale, stimulates research leading to improvement in biology, biotechnology, medicine and healthcare. The size of nanomaterials is similar to that of most biological molecules and structures; therefore, nanomaterials can be useful for both in vivo and in vitro biomedical research and applications. Therefore, this work aimed to isolate fungal strains from Taif soil samples, which have the ability to synthesize silver nanoparticles. The fungus Trichoderma harzianum, when challenged with silver nitrate solution, accumulated silver nanoparticles (AgNBs) on the surface of its cell wall in 72 h. These nanoparticles, dislodged by ultrasonication, showed an absorption peak at 420 nm in a UV-visible spectrum, corresponding to the plasmon resonance of silver nanoparticles. The transmission electron micrographs of dislodged nanoparticles in aqueous solution showed the production of reasonably monodisperse silver nanoparticles (average particle size: 4.66 nm) by the fungus. The percentage of non hatching eggs treated with the Triclabendazole drug was 69.67%, while this percentage increased to 89.67% in combination with drug and AgNPs.
PMCID: PMC3856041  PMID: 24196355
egg hatching; Fasciola; silver nanoparticle; Triclabendazole; Trichoderma
12.  Kinetics of rebounding of lymphoid and myeloid cells in mouse peripheral blood, spleen and bone marrow after treatment with cyclophosphamide 
Cellular immunology  2012;276(0):67-74.
Recently, we showed that post cyclophosphamide (CTX) microenvironment benefits the function of transferred T cells. Analysis of the kinetics of cellular recovery after CTX treatment showed that a single 4 mg/mouse CTX treatment decreased the absolute number of leukocytes in the peripheral blood (PBL) at days 3-15, and in the spleen and bone marrow (BM) at days 3-6. The absolute numbers of CD11c+CD11b− and CD11c+CD11b+ dendritic cells (DCs), CD11b+ and Ly6G+ myeloid cells, T and B cells, CD4+CD25+ T regulatory (Treg) cells, and NK1.1+ cells also decreased. The cell numbers returned to control levels during the recovery phase. The absolute numbers of B cells remained low for 3 weeks. The numbers of DCs increased in PBL and spleen at day 9 but returned to control levels at day 15. These data indicate that CTX alters the cellular microenvironment in kinetics that might be precisely targeted to benefit the host.
PMCID: PMC3787597  PMID: 22560674
Cyclophosphamide; Chemotherapy; Dendritic cells; Lymphocytes; Regulatory T cells; Natural Killer cells; Blood; Bone marrow; Spleen
13.  Dance of the SNAREs: Assembly and rearrangements detected with FRET at neuronal synapses 
Soluble NSF Attachment Protein Receptors (SNAREs) mediate vesicle fusion with the plasma membrane on activation by calcium binding to synaptotagmin. We used fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) and fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM) between fluorescently-labeled SNARE proteins expressed in cultured rat hippocampal neurons to detect resting SNARE complexes, their conformational rearrangement on exocytosis, their disassembly prior to endocytosis of vesicular proteins, and SNARE assembly at newly docked vesicles. Assembled SNAREs are not only in docked vesicles; unexpected residual “orphan SNARE complexes” also reside in para-active zone regions. Real-time changes in FRET between N-terminally labeled SNAP-25 and VAMP reported a reorientation of the SNARE motif upon exocytosis, SNARE disassembly in the active zone periphery, and SNARE reassembly in newly docked vesicles. With VAMP labeled C-terminally, decreased fluorescence in C-terminally labeled syntaxin (extracellular) reported trans-cis conformational changes in SNAREs on vesicle fusion. After fusion SNAP-25 and syntaxin disperse along with VAMP, as well as the FRET signal itself, indicating diffusion of intact SNAREs after vesicle fusion but before their peripheral disassembly. Our measurements of spatio-temporal dynamics of SNARE conformational changes and movements refine models of SNARE function. Technical advances required to detect tiny changes in fluorescence in small fractions of labeled proteins in presynaptic boutons on a time scale of seconds permit the detection of rapid inter-molecular interactions between small proportions of protein partners in cellular sub-compartments.
PMCID: PMC3647469  PMID: 23536066
14.  Application of SeDeM Expert system in formulation development of effervescent tablets by direct compression 
The SeDeM expert system is a pre formulation tool applied for the prediction of the suitability of a material for direct compression. This innovative tool provides an index of good compressibility of the material indicating its aptitude to be compressed by direct compression. In the study the SeDeM expert system has been applied for the prediction of the behavior of the material to be used in the formulation of effervescent tablets by direct compression. Different formulations were developed on the basis of the results of the SeDeM expert system. Various parameters for the material as per the SeDeM expert system were determined according to their official and reported methods. Powder blend for different formulations was evaluated for their rheological properties while tablets were evaluated for various official and unofficial tests.
Suitability of the material for direct compression was successfully predicted using the SeDeM expert system. Domperidone was found unsuitable for direct compression. During formulation all excipients responded as they were predicted as per the SeDeM expert system. Tablets produced using the resultant formulations were having sufficient mechanical strength, free of premature effervescence and were capable to be scaled up for commercial manufacturing.
PMCID: PMC4246396  PMID: 25473332
Domperidone; Effervescent tablets; SeDeM expert system; Super disintegrants
15.  Predicting missing biomarker data in a longitudinal study of Alzheimer disease 
Lo, Raymond Y. | Jagust, William J. | Aisen, Paul | Jack, Clifford R. | Toga, Arthur W. | Beckett, Laurel | Gamst, Anthony | Soares, Holly | C. Green, Robert | Montine, Tom | Thomas, Ronald G. | Donohue, Michael | Walter, Sarah | Dale, Anders | Bernstein, Matthew | Felmlee, Joel | Fox, Nick | Thompson, Paul | Schuff, Norbert | Alexander, Gene | DeCarli, Charles | Bandy, Dan | Chen, Kewei | Morris, John | Lee, Virginia M.-Y. | Korecka, Magdalena | Crawford, Karen | Neu, Scott | Harvey, Danielle | Kornak, John | Saykin, Andrew J. | Foroud, Tatiana M. | Potkin, Steven | Shen, Li | Buckholtz, Neil | Kaye, Jeffrey | Dolen, Sara | Quinn, Joseph | Schneider, Lon | Pawluczyk, Sonia | Spann, Bryan M. | Brewer, James | Vanderswag, Helen | Heidebrink, Judith L. | Lord, Joanne L. | Petersen, Ronald | Johnson, Kris | Doody, Rachelle S. | Villanueva-Meyer, Javier | Chowdhury, Munir | Stern, Yaakov | Honig, Lawrence S. | Bell, Karen L. | Morris, John C. | Mintun, Mark A. | Schneider, Stacy | Marson, Daniel | Griffith, Randall | Clark, David | Grossman, Hillel | Tang, Cheuk | Marzloff, George | Toledo-Morrell, Leylade | Shah, Raj C. | Duara, Ranjan | Varon, Daniel | Roberts, Peggy | Albert, Marilyn S. | Pedroso, Julia | Toroney, Jaimie | Rusinek, Henry | de Leon, Mony J | De Santi, Susan M | Doraiswamy, P. Murali | Petrella, Jeffrey R. | Aiello, Marilyn | Clark, Christopher M. | Pham, Cassie | Nunez, Jessica | Smith, Charles D. | Given, Curtis A. | Hardy, Peter | Lopez, Oscar L. | Oakley, MaryAnn | Simpson, Donna M. | Ismail, M. Saleem | Brand, Connie | Richard, Jennifer | Mulnard, Ruth A. | Thai, Gaby | Mc-Adams-Ortiz, Catherine | Diaz-Arrastia, Ramon | Martin-Cook, Kristen | DeVous, Michael | Levey, Allan I. | Lah, James J. | Cellar, Janet S. | Burns, Jeffrey M. | Anderson, Heather S. | Laubinger, Mary M. | Bartzokis, George | Silverman, Daniel H.S. | Lu, Po H. | Graff-Radford MBBCH, Neill R | Parfitt, Francine | Johnson, Heather | Farlow, Martin | Herring, Scott | Hake, Ann M. | van Dyck, Christopher H. | MacAvoy, Martha G. | Benincasa, Amanda L. | Chertkow, Howard | Bergman, Howard | Hosein, Chris | Black, Sandra | Graham, Simon | Caldwell, Curtis | Hsiung, Ging-Yuek Robin | Feldman, Howard | Assaly, Michele | Kertesz, Andrew | Rogers, John | Trost, Dick | Bernick, Charles | Munic, Donna | Wu, Chuang-Kuo | Johnson, Nancy | Mesulam, Marsel | Sadowsky, Carl | Martinez, Walter | Villena, Teresa | Turner, Scott | Johnson, Kathleen B. | Behan, Kelly E. | Sperling, Reisa A. | Rentz, Dorene M. | Johnson, Keith A. | Rosen, Allyson | Tinklenberg, Jared | Ashford, Wes | Sabbagh, Marwan | Connor, Donald | Jacobson, Sandra | Killiany, Ronald | Norbash, Alexander | Nair, Anil | Obisesan, Thomas O. | Jayam-Trouth, Annapurni | Wang, Paul | Lerner, Alan | Hudson, Leon | Ogrocki, Paula | DeCarli, Charles | Fletcher, Evan | Carmichael, Owen | Kittur, Smita | Mirje, Seema | Borrie, Michael | Lee, T-Y | Bartha, Dr Rob | Johnson, Sterling | Asthana, Sanjay | Carlsson, Cynthia M. | Potkin, Steven G. | Preda, Adrian | Nguyen, Dana | Tariot, Pierre | Fleisher, Adam | Reeder, Stephanie | Bates, Vernice | Capote, Horacio | Rainka, Michelle | Hendin, Barry A. | Scharre, Douglas W. | Kataki, Maria | Zimmerman, Earl A. | Celmins, Dzintra | Brown, Alice D. | Gandy, Sam | Marenberg, Marjorie E. | Rovner, Barry W. | Pearlson, Godfrey | Anderson, Karen | Saykin, Andrew J. | Santulli, Robert B. | Englert, Jessica | Williamson, Jeff D. | Sink, Kaycee M. | Watkins, Franklin | Ott, Brian R. | Wu, Chuang-Kuo | Cohen, Ronald | Salloway, Stephen | Malloy, Paul | Correia, Stephen | Rosen, Howard J. | Miller, Bruce L. | Mintzer, Jacobo
Neurology  2012;78(18):1376-1382.
To investigate predictors of missing data in a longitudinal study of Alzheimer disease (AD).
The Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) is a clinic-based, multicenter, longitudinal study with blood, CSF, PET, and MRI scans repeatedly measured in 229 participants with normal cognition (NC), 397 with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), and 193 with mild AD during 2005–2007. We used univariate and multivariable logistic regression models to examine the associations between baseline demographic/clinical features and loss of biomarker follow-ups in ADNI.
CSF studies tended to recruit and retain patients with MCI with more AD-like features, including lower levels of baseline CSF Aβ42. Depression was the major predictor for MCI dropouts, while family history of AD kept more patients with AD enrolled in PET and MRI studies. Poor cognitive performance was associated with loss of follow-up in most biomarker studies, even among NC participants. The presence of vascular risk factors seemed more critical than cognitive function for predicting dropouts in AD.
The missing data are not missing completely at random in ADNI and likely conditional on certain features in addition to cognitive function. Missing data predictors vary across biomarkers and even MCI and AD groups do not share the same missing data pattern. Understanding the missing data structure may help in the design of future longitudinal studies and clinical trials in AD.
PMCID: PMC3345787  PMID: 22491869
16.  Conus vexillum venom induces oxidative stress in Ehrlich's ascites carcinoma cells: an insight into the mechanism of induction 
It is estimated that venoms of marine cone snails (genus Conus) contain more than 100,000 different small peptides with a wide range of pharmacological and biological actions. Some of these peptides were developed into potential therapeutic agents and as molecular tools to understand biological functions of nervous and cardiovascular systems. In this study we examined the cytotoxic and anticancer properties of the marine vermivorous cone snail Conus vexillum (collected from Hurgada and Sharm El-Shaikh, Red Sea, Egypt) and suggest the possible mechanisms involved. The in vitro cytotoxic effects of Conus venom were assessed against Ehrlich’s ascites carcinoma (EAC) cells.
Conus venom treatment resulted in concentration-dependent cytotoxicity as indicated by a lactate dehydrogenase leakage assay. Apoptotic effects were measured in vivo by measuring levels of reactive oxygen species and oxidative defense agents in albino mice injected with EAC cells. Conus venom (1.25 mg/kg) induced a significant increase (p < 0.05) in several oxidative stress biomarkers (lipid peroxidation, protein carbonyl content and reactive nitrogen intermediates) of EAC cells after 3, 6, 9 and 12 hours of venom injection. Conus venom significantly reduced (p < 0.05) the activities of oxidative defense enzymes (catalase and superoxide dismutase) as well as the total antioxidant capacity of EAC cells, as evidenced by lowered levels of reduced glutathione.
These results demonstrate the cytotoxic potential of C. vexillum venom by inducing oxidative stress mediated mechanisms in tumor cells and suggest that the venom contains novel molecules with potential anticancer activity.
PMCID: PMC3710111  PMID: 23849458
Conus vexillum venom; Ehrlich’s cells; Oxidative stress; Cancer; Egypt
17.  Entonox® inhalation to reduce pain in common diagnostic and therapeutic outpatient urological procedures: a review of the evidence 
Entonox® (50% nitrous oxide and 50% oxygen; BOC Healthcare, Manchester, UK) is an analgesic and anxiolytic agent that is used to successfully reduce pain and anxiety during dental, paediatric and emergency department procedures. In this article we review the application and efficacy of Entonox® in painful local anaesthesia urological procedures by performing a systematic review of the literature.
A MEDLINE® search was performed using the terms ‘nitrous oxide’, ‘Entonox’, ‘prostate biopsy’, ‘flexible cystoscopy’ and ‘extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy’. English language publications of randomised studies were identified and reviewed.
The search yielded five randomised studies that investigated the clinical efficacy of Entonox® as an analgesic for day case urological procedures. Three randomised controlled trials (RCTs) investigated Entonox® in transrectal ultrasonography guided prostate biopsy. All three reported significant reductions in pain score in the Entonox® versus control groups. One RCT reported significant reduction in pain during male flexible cystoscopy in the Entonox® group compared with the control group. One RCT, which examined the use of Entonox® during extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy, found its use significantly decreased the pain score compared with the control group and this was comparable to intravenous pethidine.
Evidence from varied adult and paediatric procedures has shown Entonox® to be an effective, safe and patient acceptable form of analgesia. All published studies of its use in urological day case procedures have found it to significantly reduce procedural pain. There is huge potential to use this cheap, safe, effective analgesic in our current practice.
PMCID: PMC3954179  PMID: 22524905
Urology; Analgesia; Pain
18.  Waterlogging Tolerance of Crops: Breeding, Mechanism of Tolerance, Molecular Approaches, and Future Prospects 
BioMed Research International  2012;2013:963525.
Submergence or flood is one of the major harmful abiotic stresses in the low-lying countries and crop losses due to waterlogging are considerably high. Plant breeding techniques, conventional or genetic engineering, might be an effective and economic way of developing crops to grow successfully in waterlogged condition. Marker assisted selection (MAS) is a new and more effective approach which can identify genomic regions of crops under stress, which could not be done previously. The discovery of comprehensive molecular linkage maps enables us to do the pyramiding of desirable traits to improve in submergence tolerance through MAS. However, because of genetic and environmental interaction, too many genes encoding a trait, and using undesirable populations the mapping of QTL was hampered to ensure proper growth and yield under waterlogged conditions Steady advances in the field of genomics and proteomics over the years will be helpful to increase the breeding programs which will help to accomplish a significant progress in the field crop variety development and also improvement in near future. Waterlogging response of soybean and major cereal crops, as rice, wheat, barley, and maize and discovery of QTL related with tolerance of waterlogging, development of resistant variety, and, in addition, future prospects have also been discussed.
PMCID: PMC3591200  PMID: 23484164
19.  Seed Yield of Mungbean (Vigna radiata (L.) Wilczek) in relation to Growth and Developmental Aspects 
The Scientific World Journal  2012;2012:425168.
Growth parameters such as leaf area (LA), total dry mass (TDM) production, crop growth rate (CGR), relative growth rate (RGR), and net assimilation rate (NAR) were compared in six varieties of mungbean under subtropical condition (24°8′ N 90°0′ E) to identify limiting growth characters for the efficient application of physiology breeding for higher yields. Results revealed that a relatively smaller portion of TDM was produced before flower initiation and the bulk of it after anthesis. The maximum CGR was observed during pod filling stage in all the varieties due to maximum leaf area (LA) development at this stage. Two plant characters such as LA and CGR contributed to the higher TDM production. Results indicated that high yielding mungbean varieties should possess larger LA, higher TDM production ability, superior CGR at all growth stages, and high relative growth rate and net assimilation rate at vegetative stage which would result in superior yield components.
PMCID: PMC3419418  PMID: 22919319
20.  Extended results of the Alzheimer disease anti-inflammatory prevention trial (ADAPT) 
Epidemiologic evidence suggests that non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) delay onset of Alzheimer’s dementia (AD), but randomized trials show no benefit from NSAIDs in symptomatic AD. ADAPT randomized 2,528 elderly persons to naproxen or celecoxib vs. placebo for two years (s.d. 11 months) before treatments were terminated. During the treatment interval, 32 cases of AD revealed increased rates in both NSAID-assigned groups.
We continued the double-masked ADAPT protocol for two additional years to investigate incidence of AD (primary outcome). We then collected cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) from 117 volunteer participants to assess their ratio of CSF tau to Aβ1–42.
Including 40 new events observed during follow-up of 2,071 randomized individuals (92% of participants at treatment cessation), there were now 72 AD cases. Overall NSAID-related harm was no longer evident, but secondary analyses showed that increased risk remained notable in the first 2.5 years of observations, especially in 54 persons enrolled with Cognitive Impairment – No Dementia (CIND). These same analyses showed later reduction in AD incidence among asymptomatic enrollees given naproxen. CSF biomarker assays suggested that the latter result reflected reduced Alzheimer-type neurodegeneration.
These data suggest a revision of the original ADAPT hypothesis that NSAIDs reduce AD risk, thus: NSAIDs have an adverse effect in later stages of AD pathogenesis, while asymptomatic individuals treated with conventional NSAIDs like naproxen experience reduced AD incidence, but only after 2 – 3 years. Thus, treatment effects differ at various stages of disease. This hypothesis is consistent with data from both trials and epidemiological studies.
PMCID: PMC3149804  PMID: 21784351
21.  Synthetic Brassica napus L.: Development and Studies on Morphological Characters, Yield Attributes, and Yield 
The Scientific World Journal  2012;2012:416901.
Brassica napus was synthesized by hybridization between its diploid progenitor species B. rapa and B. oleracea followed by chromosome doubling. Cross with B. rapa as a female parent was only successful. Among three colchicine treatments (0.10, 0.15, and 0.20%), 0.15% gave the highest success (86%) of chromosome doubling in the hybrids (AC; 2n = 19). Synthetic B. napus (AACC, 2n = 38) was identified with bigger petals, fertile pollens and seed setting. Synthetic B. napus had increased growth over parents and exhibited wider ranges with higher coefficients of variations than parents for morphological and yield contributing characters, and yield per plant. Siliqua length as well as beak length in synthetic B. napus was longer than those of the parents. Number of seeds per siliqua, 1000-seed weight and seed yield per plant in synthetic B. napus were higher than those of the parents. Although flowering time in synthetic B. napus was earlier than both parents, however the days to maturity was little higher over early maturing B. rapa parent. The synthesized B. napus has great potential to produce higher seed yield. Further screening and evaluation is needed for selection of desirable genotypes having improved yield contributing characters and higher seed yield.
PMCID: PMC3373182  PMID: 22701356
22.  The Trypanocidal Activity of Amidine Compounds Does Not Correlate with Their Binding Affinity to Trypanosoma cruzi Kinetoplast DNA▿ 
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy  2011;55(10):4765-4773.
Due to limited efficacy and considerable toxicity, the therapy for Chagas' disease is far from being ideal, and thus new compounds are desirable. Diamidines and related compounds such as arylimidamides have promising trypanocidal activity against Trypanosoma cruzi. To better understand the mechanism of action of these heterocyclic cations, we investigated the kinetoplast DNA (kDNA) binding properties and trypanocidal efficacy against T. cruzi of 13 compounds. Four diamidines (DB75, DB569, DB1345, and DB829), eight arylimidamides (DB766, DB749, DB889, DB709, DB613, DB1831, DB1852, and DB2002), and one guanylhydrazone (DB1080) were assayed in thermal denaturation (Tm) and circular dichroism (CD) studies using whole purified T. cruzi kDNA and a conserved synthetic parasite sequence. The overall CD spectra using the whole kDNA were similar to those found for the conserved sequence and were indicative of minor groove binding. Our findings showed that some of the compounds that exhibited the highest trypanocidal activities (e.g., DB766) caused low or no change in the Tm measurements. However, while some active compounds, such as DB766, induced profound alterations of kDNA topology, others, like DB1831, although effective, did not result in altered Tm and CD measurements. Our data suggest that the strong affinity of amidines with kDNA per se is not sufficient to generate and trigger their trypanocidal activity. Cell uptake differences and possibly distinct cellular targets need to be considered in the final evaluation of the mechanisms of action of these compounds.
PMCID: PMC3186963  PMID: 21807972
23.  Expression of Transient Receptor Potential Vanilloid (TRPV) Channels in Different Passages of Articular Chondrocytes 
Ion channels play important roles in chondrocyte mechanotransduction. The transient receptor potential vanilloid (TRPV) subfamily of ion channels consists of six members. TRPV1-4 are temperature sensitive calcium-permeable, relatively non-selective cation channels whereas TRPV5 and TRPV6 show high selectivity for calcium over other cations. In this study we investigated the effect of time in culture and passage number on the expression of TRPV4, TRPV5 and TRPV6 in articular chondrocytes isolated from equine metacarpophalangeal joints. Polyclonal antibodies raised against TRPV4, TRPV5 and TRPV6 were used to compare the expression of these channels in lysates from first expansion chondrocytes (P0) and cells from passages 1–3 (P1, P2 and P3) by western blotting. TRPV4, TRPV5 and TRPV6 were expressed in all passages examined. Immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence confirmed the presence of these channels in sections of formalin fixed articular cartilage and monolayer cultures of methanol fixed P2 chondrocytes. TRPV5 and TRPV6 were upregulated with time and passage in culture suggesting that a shift in the phenotype of the cells in monolayer culture alters the expression of these channels. In conclusion, several TRPV channels are likely to be involved in calcium signaling and homeostasis in chondrocytes.
PMCID: PMC3344224  PMID: 22605988
cartilage; chondrocyte; culture; passage; mechanotransduction; immunohistochemistry; immunofluorescence; dedifferentiation; TRPV4; TRPV5; TRPV6
24.  Influence of Cationic Lipid Composition on Gene Silencing Properties of Lipid Nanoparticle Formulations of siRNA in Antigen-Presenting Cells 
Molecular Therapy  2011;19(12):2186-2200.
Lipid nanoparticles (LNPs) are currently the most effective in vivo delivery systems for silencing target genes in hepatocytes employing small interfering RNA. Antigen-presenting cells (APCs) are also potential targets for LNP siRNA. We examined the uptake, intracellular trafficking, and gene silencing potency in primary bone marrow macrophages (bmMΦ) and dendritic cells of siRNA formulated in LNPs containing four different ionizable cationic lipids namely DLinDAP, DLinDMA, DLinK-DMA, and DLinKC2-DMA. LNPs containing DLinKC2-DMA were the most potent formulations as determined by their ability to inhibit the production of GAPDH target protein. Also, LNPs containing DLinKC2-DMA were the most potent intracellular delivery agents as indicated by confocal studies of endosomal versus cytoplamic siRNA location using fluorescently labeled siRNA. DLinK-DMA and DLinKC2-DMA formulations exhibited improved gene silencing potencies relative to DLinDMA but were less toxic. In vivo results showed that LNP siRNA systems containing DLinKC2-DMA are effective agents for silencing GAPDH in APCs in the spleen and peritoneal cavity following systemic administration. Gene silencing in APCs was RNAi mediated and the use of larger LNPs resulted in substantially reduced hepatocyte silencing, while similar efficacy was maintained in APCs. These results are discussed with regard to the potential of LNP siRNA formulations to treat immunologically mediated diseases.
PMCID: PMC3242662  PMID: 21971424
25.  Spontaneous Severe Haemoperitoneum in the Third Trimester Leading to Intrauterine Death: Case Report 
Spontaneous haemoperitoneum during pregnancy is a rare but potentially catastrophic cause of acute abdominal pain. A healthy 37-year-old primigravida presented with acute abdominal pain and hypovolaemic shock at 37-weeks gestation. An emergency caesarean section was indicated on the clinical suspicion of placental abruption. However, an ultrasound scan confirmed the absence of a fetal heartbeat, and, in light of the mother's haemodynamic stability, a vaginal delivery was deemed most appropriate. Subsequent imaging, due to deterioration over the following 24-hours, revealed a large heterogenous haematoma within the pelvic cavity, which was later found to be caused by severe pelvic endometriosis. Despite fertility problems associated with severe endometriosis, advanced assisted reproductive technology enables more of these patients to become pregnant, highlighting the need to be aware of this rare complication in pregnancy.
PMCID: PMC3335503  PMID: 22567492

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