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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
cartilage; chondrocyte; culture; passage; mechanotransduction; immunohistochemistry; immunofluorescence; dedifferentiation; TRPV4; TRPV5; TRPV6
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.
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.
This study was designed to compare the bimatoprost/timolol combination and dorzolamide/timolol combination in glaucoma for efficacy, safety, and cost-effectiveness in a local population of Trichy in the state of Tamilnadu.
Materials and Methods:
Eight-week, randomized, parallel group, open-label study was conducted on 48 patients of open angle glaucoma or ocular hypertension. After initial clinical assessment and baseline investigations, bimatoprost/timolol combination (Group A) was prescribed to 22 patients (2 patients lost after initial assessment) and dorzolamide/timolol combination (Group B) to 24 patients. The patients were reviewed after second and eighth weeks for cure rate and adverse drug reaction monitoring.
At the end of 8 weeks, the mean reduction in intraocular pressure from baseline was 13.04 mmHg (95% confidence interval (CI): 10.67–14.70) with bimatoprost/timolol combination once daily (P < 0.01) and 9.46 mmHg (95% CI: 7.47–10.5) with dorzolamide/timolol combination twice daily. Both the treatments were safe. Cost-effective range of bimatoprost/timolol combination was lower than that of dorzolamide/timolol combination.
The fixed combination of bimatoprost/timolol was slightly more effective than that of dorzolamide/timolol combination in reducing IOP, and both treatments were generally well tolerated. Bimatoprost/timolol combination was more cost-effective (cost-effective analysis) than dorzolamide/timolol combination.
Bimatoprost/timolol; dorzolamide/timolol; intraocular pressure; ocular hypertension
Aquaporins (AQPs) are intrinsic membrane proteins that facilitate selective water and small solute movement across the plasma membrane. In this study, we investigate the role of inhibiting AQPs in sensitising prostate cancer cells to cryotherapy. PC-3 and DU145 prostate cancer cells were cooled to 0, −5 and −10°C. The expression of AQP3 in response to freezing was determined using real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT–qPCR) and western blot analysis. Aquaporins were inhibited using mercuric chloride (HgCl2) and small interfering RNA (siRNA) duplex, and cell survival was assessed using a colorimetric assay. There was a significant increase in AQP3 expression in response to freezing. Cells treated with AQP3 siRNA were more sensitive to cryoinjury compared with control cells (P<0.001). Inhibition of the AQPs by HgCl2 also increased the sensitivity of both cell lines to cryoinjury and there was a complete loss of cell viability at −10°C (P<0.01). In conclusion, we have shown that AQP3 is involved directly in cryoinjury. Inhibition of AQP3 increases the sensitivity of prostate cancer cells to freezing. This strategy may be exploited in the clinic to improve the efficacy of prostate cryotherapy.
AQP3; cryotherapy; prostate cancer
Cronobacter spp. (formerly Enterobacter sakazakii), are a group of Gram-negative pathogens that have been implicated as causative agents of meningitis and necrotizing enterocolitis in infants. The pathogens are linked to infant formula; however, they have also been isolated from a wide range of foods and environmental samples.
In this study, 233 samples of food, infant formula and environment were screened for the presence of Cronobacter spp. in an attempt to find its source. Twenty nine strains were isolated from samples of spices, herbs, infant foods, and dust obtained from household vacuum cleaners. Among the 76 samples of infant food, infant formula, milk powder and non-milk dairy products tested, only one sample of infant food contained Cronobacter spp. (1.4%). The other Cronobacter spp. isolates recovered include two from household vacuum dust, and 26 from 67 samples of herbs and spices. Among the food categories analyzed, herbs and spices harbored the highest number of isolates, indicating plants as a possible reservoir of this pathogen. Initial screening with API 20E test strips yielded 42 presumptive isolates. Further characterization using 3 chromogenic media (α-MUG, DFI and EsPM) and 8 sets of PCR primers detecting ITS (internal transcribed spacer sequences), 16S rRNA, zpx, gluA, gluB, OmpA genes followed by nucleotide sequencing of some PCR amplicons did not confirm the identity of all the isolates as none of the methods proved to be free of both false positives or false negatives. The final confirmation step was done by 16S rRNA sequence analysis identifying only 29 of the 42 isolates as Cronobacter spp.
Our studies showed that Cronobacter spp. are highly diverse and share many phenotypic traits with other Enterobacteriaceae members highlighting the need to use several methods to confirm the identity of this pathogen. None of the biochemical, chromogenic or PCR primers proved to be a reliable method for confirmation of the identity of the isolates as all of them gave either false positives or false negatives or both. It is therefore concluded that 16S rRNA sequencing is pivotal to confirm the identity of the isolates.
Semaphorins are a large family of transmembrane proteins. The gene for SEMA4A encodes a transmembrane protein comprising 760 amino acids. To investigate its association with human retinal degeneration, mutation screening of the SEMA4A gene was carried out on 190 unrelated patients suffering from a variety of eye diseases. We report the first observation of the involvement of SEMA4A gene mutations causing retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and cone rod dystrophy (CRD). We screened the DNA of 135 patients with RP, 25 patients with CRD, and 30 with LCA using SSCP and direct DNA sequencing for mutations in the SEMA4A gene. Two mutations, p.D345H and p.F350C, were observed only in affected patients; they were not observed in any of the normal members or the 100 control subjects. Both mutations identified occur in the conserved semaphorin domain. Multiple sequence alignments using Clustal analysis showed that R713Q is a conserved substitution and D345H is a semi‐conserved substitution. We conclude that these mutations are a cause of various retinal degenerations.
SEMA4A; retinal degeneration; retinitis pigmentosa; cone rod dystrophy
The majority of superficial temporal artery (STA) aneurysms are due to trauma and are, in reality, false aneurysms. However, true STA aneurysms are extremely rare. Here, we present two cases of spontaneous superficial temporal artery aneurysms arising without any previous history of trauma.
Background: A national eye survey was conducted in 1996 to determine the prevalence of blindness and low vision and their major causes among the Malaysian population of all ages.
Methods: A stratified two stage cluster sampling design was used to randomly select primary and secondary sampling units. Interviews, visual acuity tests, and eye examinations on all individuals in the sampled households were performed. Estimates were weighted by factors adjusting for selection probability, non-response, and sampling coverage.
Results: The overall response rate was 69% (that is, living quarters response rate was 72.8% and household response rate was 95.1%). The age adjusted prevalence of bilateral blindness and low vision was 0.29% (95% CI 0.19 to 0.39%), and 2.44% (95% CI 2.18 to 2.69%) respectively. Females had a higher age adjusted prevalence of low vision compared to males. There was no significant difference in the prevalence of bilateral low vision and blindness among the four ethnic groups, and urban and rural residents. Cataract was the leading cause of blindness (39%) followed by retinal diseases (24%). Uncorrected refractive errors (48%) and cataract (36%) were the major causes of low vision.
Conclusion: Malaysia has blindness and visual impairment rates that are comparable with other countries in the South East Asia region. However, cataract and uncorrected refractive errors, though readily treatable, are still the leading causes of blindness, suggesting the need for an evaluation on accessibility and availability of eye care services and barriers to eye care utilisation in the country.
prevalence; blindness; low vision; Malaysian
BACKGROUND: Haemorrhagic radiation proctitis frequently presents as a problem in management. We analysed the technique of formalin dab in its management. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Twenty patients presenting with haemorrhagic radiation proctitis and treated with formalin dab were prospectively analysed. RESULTS: Twelve patients ceased to bleed following one session of formnalin dab. Six patients needed more than one session to effect haemostasis. Two of three patients with torrential bleeding failed to respond to formalin dab and required surgical excision of the rectum. CONCLUSION: Formalin dab is a simple, effective and safe treatment modality in the management of chronic haemorrhagic radiation proctitis, and hence should be considered as the initial treatment modality for such a condition.
The major virulence factors of toxigenic Vibrio cholerae are cholera toxin (CT), which is encoded by a lysogenic bacteriophage (CTXΦ), and toxin-coregulated pilus (TCP), an essential colonization factor which is also the receptor for CTXΦ. The genes for the biosynthesis of TCP are part of a larger genetic element known as the TCP pathogenicity island. To assess their pathogenic potential, we analyzed environmental strains of V. cholerae carrying genetic variants of the TCP pathogenicity island for colonization of infant mice, susceptibility to CTXΦ, and diarrheagenicity in adult rabbits. Analysis of 14 environmental strains, including 3 strains carrying a new allele of the tcpA gene, 9 strains carrying a new allele of the toxT gene, and 2 strains carrying conventional tcpA and toxT genes, showed that all strains colonized infant mice with various efficiencies in competition with a control El Tor biotype strain of V. cholerae O1. Five of the 14 strains were susceptible to CTXΦ, and these transductants produced CT and caused diarrhea in adult rabbits. These results suggested that the new alleles of the tcpA and toxT genes found in environmental strains of V. cholerae encode biologically active gene products. Detection of functional homologs of the TCP island genes in environmental strains may have implications for understanding the origin and evolution of virulence genes of V. cholerae.
BACKGROUND—Congenital microphthalmia (OMIM: 309700) may occur in isolation or in association with a variety of systemic malformations. Isolated microphthalmia may be inherited as an autosomal dominant, an autosomal recessive, or an X linked trait.
METHODS—Based on a whole genome linkage analysis, in a six generation consanguineous family with autosomal recessive inheritance, the first locus for isolated microphthalmia was mapped to chromosome 14q32. Eight members of this family underwent clinical examination to determine the nature of the microphthalmia phenotype associated with this locus.
RESULTS—All affected individuals in this family suffered from bilateral microphthalmia in association with anterior segment abnormalities, and the best visual acuity achieved was "perception of light". Corneal changes included partial or complete congenital sclerocornea, and the later development of corneal vascularisation and anterior staphyloma. Intraocular pressure, as measured by Schiotz tonometry, was greatly elevated in many cases.
CONCLUSIONS—This combination of ocular defects suggests an embryological disorder involving tissues derived from both the neuroectoderm and neural crest. Other families with defects in the microphthalmia gene located on 14q32 may have a similar ocular phenotype aiding their identification.