Promyelocytic leukemia zinc finger (PLZF) protein expression is closely related to the progression of human cancers, including prostate cancer (PCa). However, the according context of a signaling pathway for PLZF to suppress prostate tumorigenesis remains greatly unknown. Here we report that PLZF is a downstream mediator of the PTEN signaling pathway in PCa. We found that PLZF expression is closely correlated with PTEN expression in a cohort of prostate cancer specimens. Interestingly, both PTEN rescue and phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) inhibitor LY294002 treatment increase the PLZF expression in prostate cancer cell lines. Further, luciferase reporter assay and chromatin immunoprecipitation assay demonstrate that FOXO3a, a transcriptional factor phosphorylated by PI3K/AKT, could directly bind to the promoter of PLZF gene. These results indicate that PTEN regulates PLZF expression by AKT/FOXO3a. Moreover, our animal experiments also demonstrate that PLZF is capable of inhibiting prostate tumorigenesis in vivo. Taken together, our study defines a PTEN/PLZF pathway and would shed new lights for developing therapeutic strategy of prostate cancer.
Distal cerebral embolization is a known complication of carotid interventions. Here we prospectively investigate whether subclinical microembolization seen on post-operative MRI leads to cognitive deficits in a cohort of patients undergoing carotid revascularization procedures.
Patients undergoing carotid interventions and eligible for MRI scanning were recruited to participate. Among 247 patients who received both preoperative and postoperative MRI evaluations, a total of 51 patients also completed neuropsychological testing prior to and at one month following the procedures. Cognitive evaluation included the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT) for memory evaluation and the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) for general cognitive impairment screening.
All 51 patients (16 CAS and 35 CEA) were male with a mean age of 71 years, ranging 54 to 89 years. Among them, 27 patients (53%) were symptomatic preoperatively including 11 patients who had prior stroke and 16 patients who had prior TIA. The majority of the patients had significant medical comorbidities including hypertension (96%), diabetes (31.3%), coronary artery disease (47%), and COPD (15.7%). Two patients (4%) had prior ipsilateral CEA and 8 had contralateral carotid occlusion (15.7%).
Memory decline evident on RAVLT was identified in 21 patients including 8 CAS patients and 13 CEA patients. Eleven patients had evidence of procedure-related microemboli. Although there was no significant difference in baseline cognitive function or memory change between CEA and CAS cohort, the CAS cohort had significantly higher incidence of microembolic lesions. Multivariate regression analysis showed that procedure-related microembolization was associated with memory decline (P=0.016) as evident by change in RAVLT. Prior history of neurologic symptom was significantly associated with poor baseline cognitive function (MMSE) (P=0.03) and overall cognitive deterioration (change in MMSE) (P=0.026) as determined by Wilcoxon Rank Sum test and linear regression analysis respectively.
Although both CEA and CAS are effective in stroke prevention with minimal neurologic complication, neurocognitive effects remain uncertain. Procedure-associated microembolization and pre-existing neurologic symptoms are associated with poor baseline cognitive function and memory decline following the procedures. Further comprehensive cognitive evaluation to determine the benefit of carotid interventions is warranted.
To assess the variation in distribution, extent, and NPP of global natural vegetation in response to climate change in the period 1911–2000 and to provide a feasible method for climate change research in regions where historical data is difficult to obtain. In this research, variations in spatiotemporal distributions of global potential natural vegetation (PNV) from 1911 to 2000 were analyzed with the comprehensive sequential classification system (CSCS) and net primary production (NPP) of different ecosystems was evaluated with the synthetic model to determine the effect of climate change on the terrestrial ecosystems. The results showed that consistently rising global temperature and altered precipitation patterns had exerted strong influence on spatiotemporal distribution and productivities of terrestrial ecosystems, especially in the mid/high latitudes. Ecosystems in temperate zones expanded and desert area decreased as a consequence of climate variations. The vegetation that decreased the most was cold desert (18.79%), while the maximum increase (10.31%) was recorded in savanna. Additionally, the area of tundra and alpine steppe reduced significantly (5.43%) and were forced northward due to significant ascending temperature in the northern hemisphere. The global terrestrial ecosystems productivities increased by 2.09%, most of which was attributed to savanna (6.04%), tropical forest (0.99%), and temperate forest (5.49%). Most NPP losses were found in cold desert (27.33%). NPP increases displayed a latitudinal distribution. The NPP of tropical zones amounted to more than a half of total NPP, with an estimated increase of 1.32%. The increase in northern temperate zone was the second highest with 3.55%. Global NPP showed a significant positive correlation with mean annual precipitation in comparison with mean annual temperature and biological temperature. In general, effects of climate change on terrestrial ecosystems were deep and profound in 1911–2000, especially in the latter half of the period.
Dihydromyricetin (DHM) is a major active ingredient of flavonoids compounds. It exhibited anticancer activity and induced apoptosis in human hepatocellular carcinoma HepG2 cells according to our previous data. In this study, we investigated whether p53 is involved in DHM-triggered viability inhibition and apoptosis induction in cancer cells. MTT [3-(4, 5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide] assay was employed to evaluate the viability of HepG2 cells after DHM treatment. Meanwhile, p53 small interfering RNA (siRNA) was adopted to silence p53 expression. Protein level of p53 and Bax/Bcl-2 were evaluated by western blot analysis. Cell counting assay showed that DHM inhibited HepG2 cell growth effectively in a time- and dose-dependent manner. P53 expression was significantly increased after DHM treatment, whereas Bcl-2 was reduced potently. Furthermore, after co-treatment with Pifithrin-α (PFT-α, p53 inhibitor), Bcl-2 expression was reversed. The expression of Bax was no significant change, which was also observed after p53 silence. These findings defined and supported a novel function that DHM could induce human hepatocellular carcinoma HepG2 cells apoptosis by up-regulating Bax/Bcl-2 expression via p53 signal pathway.
Previous studies in narcolepsy, an autoimmune disorder affecting hypocretin (orexin) neurons and recently associated with H1N1 influenza, have demonstrated significant associations with five loci. Using a well-characterized Chinese cohort, we refined known associations in TRA@ and P2RY11-DNMT1 and identified new associations in the TCR beta (TRB@; rs9648789 max P = 3.7×10−9 OR 0.77), ZNF365 (rs10995245 max P = 1.2×10−11 OR 1.23), and IL10RB-IFNAR1 loci (rs2252931 max P = 2.2×10−9 OR 0.75). Variants in the Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA)- DQ region were associated with age of onset (rs7744020 P = 7.9×10−9 beta −1.9 years) and varied significantly among cases with onset after the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic compared to previous years (rs9271117 P = 7.8×10−10 OR 0.57). These reflected an association of DQB1*03:01 with earlier onset and decreased DQB1*06:02 homozygosity following 2009. Our results illustrate how genetic association can change in the presence of new environmental challenges and suggest that the monitoring of genetic architecture over time may help reveal the appearance of novel triggers for autoimmune diseases.
Narcolepsy-hypocretin deficiency results from a highly specific autoimmune attack on hypocretin cells. Recent studies have established antigen presentation by specific class II proteins encoded by (HLA DQB1*06:02 and DQA1*01:02) to the cognate T cell receptor as the main disease pathway, with a role for H1N1 influenza in the triggering process. Here, we have used a large and well-characterized cohort of Chinese narcolepsy cases to examine genetic architecture not observed in European samples. We confirmed previously implicated susceptibility genes (T cell receptor alpha, P2RY11), and identify new loci (ZNF365, IL10RB-IFNAR1), most notably, variants at the beta chain of the T cell receptor. We found that one HLA variant, (DQB1*03:01), is associated with dramatically earlier disease onset (nearly 2 years). We also identified differences in HLA haplotype frequencies among cases with onset following the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic as compared to before the outbreak, with fewer HLA DQB1*06:02 homozygotes. This may be the first demonstration of such an effect, and suggests that the study of changes in GWAS signals over time could help identify environmental factors in other autoimmune diseases.
AIM: To evaluate the clinical results of angiography and embolization for massive gastrointestinal hemorrhage after abdominal surgery.
METHODS: This retrospective study included 26 patients with postoperative hemorrhage after abdominal surgery. All patients underwent emergency transarterial angiography, and 21 patients underwent emergency embolization. We retrospectively analyzed the angiographic features and the clinical outcomes of transcatheter arterial embolization.
RESULTS: Angiography showed that a discrete bleeding focus was detected in 21 (81%) of 26 patients. Positive angiographic findings included extravasations of contrast medium (n = 9), pseudoaneurysms (n = 9), and fusiform aneurysms (n = 3). Transarterial embolization was technically successful in 21 (95%) of 22 patients. Clinical success was achieved in 18 (82%) of 22 patients. No postembolization complications were observed. Three patients died of rebleeding.
CONCLUSION: The positive rate of angiographic findings in 26 patients with postoperative gastrointestinal hemorrhage was 81%. Transcatheter arterial embolization seems to be an effective and safe method in the management of postoperative gastrointestinal hemorrhage.
Transcatheter arterial embolization; Postoperative hemorrhage; Complications; Surgery
Recently we found that ATP5J was over-expressed in tissue samples from patients with colorectal cancer. However, the clinical significance and function of the over-expression of ATP5J in these patients remains unclear. We investigated these issues in the current study. Our results indicated that expression of ATP5J was significantly higher in colorectal cancer tissue than in adjacent tissue, and it was also significantly higher in metastatic lymph nodes than in primary cancer tissue (P<0.05). A correlation between ATP5J expression and tumor differentiation was detected, but no correlation with gender, age, T stage, lymph node metastasis, or survival status was observed. Down-regulation of ATP5J expression attenuated the ability of cell migration and increased the sensitivity to 5-fluorouracil (5-Fu) in cells of the DLD1 cell line. Inversely, up-regulation of ATP5J expression enhanced cell migration and decreased 5-Fu sensitivity, suggesting that the function of ATP5J in colorectal cancer might involve cell migration and 5-Fu sensitivity.
The complex nanoliposomes encapsulating both a hydrophilic drug vitamin C (vit C) and hydrophobic drug medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) was prepared by combining double emulsion method with dynamic high pressure microfluidization. The complex nanoliposomes was further freeze-dried under −86 °C for 48 h with sucrose at the sucrose/lipids ratio of 2:1(w/w) in order to enhance its stability. The freeze-dried complex nanoliposomes under the suitable conditions exhibited high entrapment efficiency of MCFAs (44.26 ± 3.34)%, relatively high entrapment efficiency of vit C (62.25 ± 3.43)%, low average size diameter (110.4 ± 7.28) nm and good storage stability at 4 °C for 60 days with slight changes in mean particle diameter and drug entrapment efficiencies. The results of transmission electron microscopy of freeze-dried complex nanoliposomes also showed that the freeze-dried samples with sucrose were stable without great increase in their particle sizes and without destroying their spherical shape. The results indicated that sucrose presented well protection effects in MCFAs-vit C complex nanoliposomes, suggesting the possibility of further usage in commercial liposomes.
medium-chain fatty acids; vitamin C; double emulsion; dynamic high pressure microfluidization; lyophilization
Although rotational parameters by speckle tracking echocardiography (STE) have been previously compared to sonomicrometry and cardiac magnetic resonance imaging, few have examined the relationship between left ventricular (LV) rotational mechanics and intraventricular measures of load-independent contractility, LV stiffness, or ventriculoarterial coupling. The aim of this study was to compare the changes in LV rotational indices to intraventricular pressure–volume (PV) relationships under a range of inotropic states induced by pharmacological interventions, acute ischemia, and changes in preload. In nine pigs, simultaneous echocardiographic imaging and LVPV measurements were performed during pharmacologically induced high or low inotropy and during acute ischemia by ligation of the left anterior descending coronary artery (LAD). Maximal ventricular elastance (Emax), arterial elastance (Ea), ventricular–arterial coupling (Emax/Ea), dP/dt, tau, and other hemodynamic parameters were determined. Dobutamine and esmolol infusions led to inversely correlated changes in hemodynamic measurements of LV function. Apical but not basal rotation and diastolic rotation rate were decreased by esmolol and increased by dobutamine. The LV twist correlates well with Emax (r = 0.83) and Emax/Ea (r = 0.80). Apical diastolic rotation rate also correlates with dP/dtmin (r = −0.63), τ (r = −0.81), and LV stiffness (r = −0.52). LAD ligation decreased systolic and diastolic LV rotation in apical (P < 0.05), but not basal myocardium. Occlusion of the inferior vena cava, to reduce preload, increased apical rotation in systole and diastole. LV rotational parameters measured by STE provide quantitative and reproducible indices of global LV systolic and diastolic function during acute changes in hemodynamics.
Left ventricular twist; LV stiffness; rotation; untwisting rate
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are endogenous small non-coding RNAs which play a critical role in gene regulation in plants. Pinelliapedatisecta is one of the most important herbs in traditional Chinese medicine, but there are no microRNAs of Pinelliapedatisecta were deposited in miRBase and the research of the related miRNA biological functions is still insufficient. To detect Pinelliapedatisecta miRNAs and discover their expression difference with Pinelliaternata, we carried out a microarray profiling. A total of 101 miRNAs belonging to 22 miRNA families were detected both in Pinelliapedatisecta and Pinelliaternata respectively, among them 21 miRNAs showed their differentially expression. GO (gene ontology) term enrichment analysis of the target genes of differential expression miRNAs reveal that these miRNAs mainly affect the reproduction, transcription factor activity and plant developmental process. To elucidate the target function of miRNAs, we constructed a degradome library from Pinellia pedatisecta leaf. The result showed that a total of 18 transcript were identified as targets of miRNAs and further analysis indicated that miR156 and miR529 may function together to repress SPL14.
“Trojan horse” antibiotic albomycins are peptidyl nucleosides consisting of a highly modified 4′-thiofuranosyl cytosine moiety and a ferrichrome siderophore that are linked by a peptide bond via a serine residue. While the latter component serves to sequester iron from the environment, the seryl nucleoside portion is a potent inhibitor of bacterial seryl-tRNA synthetases, resulting in broad-spectrum antimicrobial activities of albomycin δ2. The isolation of albomycins has revealed this biological activity is only optimized following two unusual cytosine modifications, N4-carbamoylation and N3-methylation. We identified a genetic locus (named abm) for albomycin production in Streptomyces sp. ATCC 700974. Gene deletion and complementation experiments along with bioinformatic analysis suggested 18 genes are responsible for albomycin biosynthesis and resistance, allowing us to propose a potential biosynthetic pathway for installing the novel chemical features. The gene abmI, encoding a putative methyltransferase, was functionally assigned in vitro and shown to modify the N3 of a variety of cytosine-containing nucleosides and antibiotics such as blasticidin S. Furthermore, a ΔabmI mutant was shown to produce the descarbamoyl-desmethyl albomycin analog, supporting that the N3-methylation occurs before the N4-carbamoylation in the biosynthesis of albomycin δ2. The combined genetic information was utilized to identify an abm-related locus (named ctj) from the draft genome of Streptomyces sp. C. Cross-complementation experiments and in vitro studies with CtjF, the AbmI homolog, suggest the production of a similar 4′-thiofuranosyl cytosine in this organism. In total, the genetic and biochemical data provide a biosynthetic template for assembling siderophore-inhibitor conjugates, and modifying the albomycin scaffold to generate new derivatives.
β-blockers (BBs) with different pharmacological properties may have heterogeneous effects on sympathetic nervous activity (SNA) and central aortic pressure (CAP), which are independent cardiovascular factors for hypertension. Hence, we analyzed the effects of bisoprolol and atenolol on SNA and CAP in hypertensive patients.
This was a prospective, randomized, controlled study in 109 never-treated hypertensive subjects randomized to bisoprolol (5 mg) or atenolol (50 mg) for 4–8 weeks. SNA, baroreflex sensitivity (BRS) and heart rate (HR) variability (HRV) were measured using power spectral analysis using a Finometer. CAP and related parameters were determined using the SphygmoCor device (pulse wave analysis).
Both drugs were similarly effective in reducing brachial BP. However, central systolic BP (−14±10 mm Hg vs −6±9 mm Hg; P<0.001) and aortic pulse pressure (−3±10 mm Hg vs +3±8 mm Hg; P<0.001) decreased more significantly with bisoprolol than with atenolol. The augmentation index at a HR of 75 bpm (AIxatHR75) was significantly decreased (29%±11% to 25%±12%; P = 0.026) in the bisoprolol group only. Furthermore, the change in BRS in the bisoprolol group (3.99±4.19 ms/mmHg) was higher than in the atenolol group (2.66±3.78 ms/mmHg), although not statistically significant (P>0.05). BRS was stable when RHR was controlled (RHR≤65 bpm), and the two treatments had similar effects on the low frequency/high frequency (HF) ratio and on HF.
BBs seem to have different effects on arterial distensibility and compliance in hypertensive subjects. Compared with atenolol, bisoprolol may have a better effect on CAP.
Objectives. IL-33, a newly found cytokine which is involved in joint inflammation, could be blocked by a decoy receptor—sST2. The expression and correlation of IL-33 and sST2 in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are of great interest. Methods. Synovial fluid (SF) was obtained from 120 RA and 30 osteoarthritis (OA) patients, and paired sera were collected from 54 of these RA patients. The levels of IL-33 and sST2 were measured by ELISA. Results. SF IL-33 was significantly higher in RA than in OA, which was correlated with disease activity score 28, erythrocyte sedimentation rate, rheumatoid factor (RF)-IgM, RF-IgG, glucose phosphate isomerase (GPI), and immunoglobulin. Serum IL-33 was correlated positively with SF IL-33 in RA. Furthermore, it was correlated with RF-IgM and GPI. sST2 was partly detectable in RA (13 out of 54, 24.1%), while not in OA. Serum sST2 in RA had no significant correlation with serum IL-33 or SF IL-33. However, SFs from both RA and OA patients did not express sST2. Conclusions. This study supported that IL-33 played an important role in the local pathogenesis of RA. Considering the tight correlation between IL-33 and clinical features, it may become a new target of local treatment.
Mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) is aberrantly activated in many cancer types, and two rapamycin derivatives are currently approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the United States for treating renal cell carcinoma. Mechanistically, mTOR is hyperactivated in human cancers either due to the genetic activation of its upstream activating signaling pathways or the genetic inactivation of its negative regulators. The tumor suppressor liver kinase B1 (LKB1), also known as serine/threonine kinase 11 (STK11), is involved in cell polarity, cell detachment and adhesion, tumor metastasis, and energetic stress response. A key role of LKB1 is to negatively regulate the activity of mTOR complex 1 (mTORC1). This review summarizes the molecular basis of this negative interaction and recent research progress in this area.
Energetic stress; metabolism; bi-allelic inactivation; protein translation
Both biomass dominated green vegetative cells (GV) and astaxanthin-dominated orange resting cells (OR) affect the final astaxanthin yield in industry. Examination of Haematococcus pluvialis revealed that the OR cells greatly varied from the GV cells at both cellular and subcellular levels. In particular, the thylakoid membranes in the OR were disassembled and fragmented. Furthermore, the OR conserved most of the photosynthetic pigments, with elevated concentrations of violaxanthin, antheraxanthin, and neoxanthin. Notably, moderate photosynthesis was detected in OR, even though most of the thylakoid membranes were disassembled, when compared with those in the GV. However, the energy distribution pattern between photosystem I and II (PSI and PSII) in the OR favored PSI, which was also confirmed by 77-K fluorescence. As zeaxanthin was not detected in the OR, we attribute the acclimation role to astaxanthin, instead of xanthophyll cycle. Additionally, proteomic-scale comparison analysis of thylakoids of the OR and GV indicated no photosynthetically remarkable variations. However, an extensive acclimation mechanism of H. pluvialis was proposed, in which proteins in thylakoid of GV were noted to be involved in biomass accumulation and those in OR were involved in stress response. Conclusions of the comparative analysis might provide some physiological background of OR for astaxanthin production by using H. pluvialis.
Yes-associated protein 1 (YAP 1), the nuclear effector of the Hippo pathway, is a key regulator of organ size and a candidate human oncogene in multiple tumors. However, the expression dynamics of YAP 1 in urothelial carcinoma of the bladder (UCB) and its clinical/prognostic significance are unclear.
In this study, the methods of quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR), Western blotting and immunohistochemistry (IHC) were utilized to investigate mRNA/ protein expression of YAP 1 in UCBs. Spearman’s rank correlation, Kaplan-Meier plots and Cox proportional hazards regression model were used to analyze the data.
Up-regulated expression of YAP 1 mRNA and protein was observed in the majority of UCBs by qRT-PCR and Western blotting, when compared with their paired normal bladder tissues. By IHC, positive expression of YAP 1 was examined in 113/213 (53.1%) of UCBs and in 6/86 (7.0%) of normal bladder specimens tissues. Positive expression of YAP 1 was correlated with poorer differentiation, higher T classification and higher N classification (P < 0.05). In univariate survival analysis, a significant association between positive expression of YAP 1 and shortened patients’ survival was found (P < 0.001). In different subsets of UCB patients, YAP 1 expression was also a prognostic indicator in patients with grade 2 (P = 0.005) or grade 3 (P = 0.046) UCB, and in patients in pT1 (P = 0.013), pT2-4 (P = 0.002), pN- (P < 0.001) or pT2-4/pN- (P = 0.004) stage. Importantly, YAP 1 expression (P = 0.003) together with pT and pN status (P< 0.05) provided significant independent prognostic parameters in multivariate analysis.
Our findings provide evidences that positive expression of YAP 1 in UCB may be important in the acquisition of an aggressive phenotype, and it is an independent biomarker for poor prognosis of patients with UCB.
Urothelial carcinoma of the bladder; YAP 1; Immunohistochemistry; Prognosis
Gracilariopsis lemaneiformis has a high economic value and is one of the most important aquaculture species in China. Despite it is economic importance, it has remained largely unstudied at the genomic level. In this study, we conducted a genome survey of Gp. lemaneiformis using next-generation sequencing (NGS) technologies. In total, 18.70 Gb of high-quality sequence data with an estimated genome size of 97 Mb were obtained by HiSeq 2000 sequencing for Gp. lemaneiformis. These reads were assembled into 160,390 contigs with a N50 length of 3.64 kb, which were further assembled into 125,685 scaffolds with a total length of 81.17 Mb. Genome analysis predicted 3490 genes and a GC% content of 48%.
The identified genes have an average transcript length of 1,429 bp, an average coding sequence size of 1,369 bp, 1.36 exons per gene, exon length of 1,008 bp, and intron length of 191 bp. From the initial assembled scaffold, transposable elements constituted 54.64% (44.35 Mb) of the genome, and 7737 simple sequence repeats (SSRs) were identified. Among these SSRs, the trinucleotide repeat type was the most abundant (up to 73.20% of total SSRs), followed by the di- (17.41%), tetra- (5.49%), hexa- (2.90%), and penta- (1.00%) nucleotide repeat type. These characteristics suggest that Gp. lemaneiformis is a model organism for genetic study. This is the first report of genome-wide characterization within this taxon.
Some Bacillus thuringiensis strains have high toxicity to nematodes. Nematicidal activity has been found in several families of crystal proteins, such as Cry5, Cry6, and Cry55. The B. thuringiensis strain YBT-1518 has three cry genes that have high nematicidal activity. The whole genome sequence of this strain contains multiple potential virulence factors. To evaluate the pathogenic potential of virulence factors, we focused on a metalloproteinase called Bmp1. It encompasses a consecutive N-terminal signal peptide, an FTP superfamily domain, an M4 neutral protease GluZincin superfamily, two Big-3 superfamily motifs, and a Gram-positive anchor superfamily motif as a C-terminal domain. Here, we showed that purified Bmp1 protein showed metalloproteinase activity and toxicity against Caenorhabditis elegans (the 50% lethal concentration is 610 ± 9.37 μg/ml). In addition, mixing Cry5Ba with Bmp1 protein enhanced the toxicity 7.9-fold (the expected toxicity of the two proteins calculated from their separate toxicities) against C. elegans. Confocal microscopic observation revealed that Bmp1 protein was detected from around the mouth and esophagus to the intestine. Striking microscopic images revealed that Bmp1 degrades intestine tissues, and the Cry5Ba causes intestinal shrinkage from the body wall. Thus, the B. thuringiensis Bmp1 metalloproteinase is a nematicidal virulence factor. These findings give a new insight into the relationship between B. thuringiensis and its host nematodes.
Toxoplasma gondii results in ocular toxoplasmosis characterized by chorioretinitis with inflammation and necrosis of the neuroretina, pigment epithelium, and choroid. After invasion, T. gondii replicates in host cells before cell lysis, which releases the parasites to invade neighboring cells to repeat the life cycle and establish a chronic retinal infection. The mechanism by which T. gondii avoids innate immune defense, however, is unknown. Therefore, we determined whether PI3K/Akt signaling pathway activation by T. gondii is essential for subversion of host immunity and parasite proliferation. T. gondii infection or excretory/secretory protein (ESP) treatment of the human retinal pigment epithelium cell line ARPE-19 induced Akt phosphorylation, and PI3K inhibitors effectively reduced T. gondii proliferation in host cells. Furthermore, T. gondii reduced intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) while activating the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway. While searching for the main source of these ROS, we found that NADPH oxidase 4 (Nox4) was prominently expressed in ARPE-19 cells, and this expression was significantly reduced by T. gondii infection or ESP treatment along with decreased ROS levels. In addition, artificial reduction of host Nox4 levels with specific siRNA increased replication of intracellular T. gondii compared to controls. Interestingly, these T. gondii-induced effects were reversed by PI3K inhibitors, suggesting that activation of the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway is important for suppression of both Nox4 expression and ROS levels by T. gondii infection. These findings demonstrate that manipulation of the host PI3K/Akt signaling pathway and Nox4 gene expression is a novel mechanism involved in T. gondii survival and proliferation.
Epilepsy is a common chronic neurological disorder characterized by recurrent unprovoked seizures. Electroencephalogram (EEG) signals play a critical role in the diagnosis of epilepsy. Multichannel EEGs contain more information than do single-channel EEGs. Automatic detection algorithms for spikes or seizures have traditionally been implemented on single-channel EEG, and algorithms for multichannel EEG are unavailable.
This study proposes a physiology-based detection system for epileptic seizures that uses multichannel EEG signals. The proposed technique was tested on two EEG data sets acquired from 18 patients. Both unipolar and bipolar EEG signals were analyzed. We employed sample entropy (SampEn), statistical values, and concepts used in clinical neurophysiology (e.g., phase reversals and potential fields of a bipolar EEG) to extract the features. We further tested the performance of a genetic algorithm cascaded with a support vector machine and post-classification spike matching.
We obtained 86.69% spike detection and 99.77% seizure detection for Data Set I. The detection system was further validated using the model trained by Data Set I on Data Set II. The system again showed high performance, with 91.18% detection of spikes and 99.22% seizure detection.
We report a de novo EEG classification system for seizure and spike detection on multichannel EEG that includes physiology-based knowledge to enhance the performance of this type of system.
This paper reports the experimental and theoretical investigation of the Talbot effect beyond the paraxial limit at optical frequencies. Au hole array films with periodicitya0comparable to the wavelength of coherent illumination λ were used to study the non-paraxial Talbot effect. Significant differences from the paraxial (classical) Talbot effect were observed. Depending on the ratio of a0/λ, the interference pattern in the direction perpendicular to the hole array was not necessarily periodic, and the self-image distances deviated from the paraxial Talbot distances. Defects within the hole array film or above the film were healed in the self-images as the light propagated from the surface.
(110.6760) Talbot and self-imaging effects; (050.1940) Diffraction; (050.6624) Subwavelength structures; (240.6680) Surface plasmons
Robot-assisted rehabilitation is an advanced new technology in stroke rehabilitation to provide intensive training. Post-stroke motor recovery depends on active rehabilitation by voluntary participation of patient’s paretic motor system as early as possible in order to promote reorganization of brain. However, voluntary residual motor efforts to the affected limb have not been involved enough in most robot-assisted rehabilitation for patients after stroke. The objective of this study is to evaluate the feasibility of robot-assisted rehabilitation using myoelectric control on upper limb motor recovery.
In the present study, an exoskeleton-type rehabilitation robotic system was designed to provide voluntarily controlled assisted torque to the affected wrist. Voluntary intention was involved by using the residual surface electromyography (EMG) from flexor carpi radialis(FCR) and extensor carpi radialis (ECR)on the affected limb to control the mechanical assistance provided by the robotic system during wrist flexion and extension in a 20-session training. The system also applied constant resistant torque to the affected wrist during the training. Sixteen subjects after stroke had been recruited for evaluating the tracking performance and therapeutical effects of myoelectrically controlled robotic system.
With the myoelectrically-controlled assistive torque, stroke survivors could reach a larger range of motion with a significant decrease in the EMG signal from the agonist muscles. The stroke survivors could be trained in the unreached range with their voluntary residual EMG on the paretic side. After 20-session rehabilitation training, there was a non-significant increase in the range of motion and a significant decrease in the root mean square error (RMSE) between the actual wrist angle and target angle. Significant improvements also could be found in muscle strength and clinical scales.
These results indicate that robot-aided therapy with voluntary participation of patient’s paretic motor system using myoelectric control might have positive effect on upper limb motor recovery.
The dielectric nanosize dependence of BaTiO3 powders was investigated by the slurry method, where two series of BaTiO3 slurries with 10 vol% and 30 vol% solids loadings were prepared as model samples. Applying the Bruggeman-Hanai equation, the high-frequency limiting permittivity (εh) of the slurries was extracted from the dielectric spectra. The εh of the 10 vol% slurry showed abnormal size independence in the range from 100 nm to 700 nm, and the εh of the 30 vol% slurry exhibited good agreement with the previous prediction. Through analysing quantitatively the response of εh to the changing permittivity of the powders under different solids loading, it was found that the εh of the slurry with lower solids loading is more inclined to be interfered by the systematic and random errors. Furthermore, a high permittivity value was found in the BaTiO3 powders with 50 nm particle size.
The current study aims to investigate the effect of chitosan derivatives on the intestinal absorption and bioavailabilities of forsythoside A (FTA) and Chlorogenic acid (CHA), the major active components in Flos Lonicerae - Fructus Forsythiae herb couple. Biopharmaceutics and pharmacokinetics properties of the two compounds have been characterized in vitro, in situ as well as in rats. Based on the identified biopharmaceutics characteristics of the two compounds, the effect of chitosan derivatives as an absorption enhancer on the intestinal absorption and pharmacokinetics of FTA and CHA in pure compound form as well as extract form were investigated in vitro, in situ and in vivo. Both FTA and CHA demonstrated very limited intestinal permeabilities, leading to oral bioavailabilities being only 0.50% and 0.13% in rats, respectively. Results from both in vitro, in situ as well as in vivo studies consistently indicated that Chito-oligosaccharide (COS) at dosage of 25 mg/kg could enhance intestinal permeabilities significantly as well as the in vivo bioavailabilities of both FTA and CHA than CMCs in Flos Lonicerae - Fructus Forsythiae herb couple preparations, and was safe for gastrointestine from morphological observation. Besides, treatment with Flos Lonicerae - Fructus Forsythiae herb couple preparations with COS at the dosage of 25 mg/kg prevented MDCK damage after influenza virus propagation, which was significantly better than control. The current findings not only identified the usefulness of COS for the improved delivery of Flos Lonicerae - Fructus Forsythiae preparations but also demonstrated the importance of biopharmaceutical characterization in the dosage form development of traditional Chinese medicine.
Prion diseases are kinds of progressive, incurable neurodegenerative disorders. So far, survival time of the patients with these diseases in China is unclear.
Based upon the surveillance data from Chinese Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) surveillance network from January 2008 to December 2011, a retrospective follow-up survey was performed. The survival times of Chinese patients with prion diseases and the possible influencing factors were analyzed.
Median survival time of 121 deceased patients was 7.1 months, while those for sporadic CJD (sCJD), familial CJD (fCJD) and fatal familial insomnia (FFI) cases were 6.1, 3.1 and 8.2 months, respectively. 74.0% of sCJD patients, 100% of fCJD cases and 91.7% FFI cases died within one year. The general socio-demographic factors, abnormalities in clinical examinations, clinical manifestations, and social factors did not significantly influence the survival times of Chinese prion patients.
Survival time of Chinese patients with prion diseases was comparable with that of many Western countries, but obviously shorter than that of Japan. Patients with acute onset and rapid progression had significantly short survival times.