Laser sheet based microscopy has become widely accepted as an effective active illumination method for real time three-dimensional (3D) imaging of biological tissue samples. The light sheet geometry, where the camera is oriented perpendicular to the sheet itself, provides an effective method of eliminating some of the scattered light and minimizing the sample exposure to radiation. However, residual background noise still remains, limiting the contrast and visibility of potentially interesting features in the samples. In this article, we investigate additional structuring of the illumination for improved background rejection, and propose a new technique, “3D HiLo” where we combine two HiLo images processed from orthogonal directions to improve the condition of the 3D reconstruction. We present a comparative study of conventional structured illumination based demodulation methods, namely 3Phase and HiLo with a newly implemented 3D HiLo approach and demonstrate that the latter yields superior signal-to-background ratio in both lateral and axial dimensions, while simultaneously suppressing image processing artifacts.
(180.6900) Three-dimensional microscopy; (180.2520) Fluorescence microscopy; (110.6880) Three-dimensional image acquisition; (100.3020) Image reconstruction-restoration
The steroid androst-5-ene-3ß,17ß-diol (5-androstenediol, 5-AED) elevates circulating granulocytes and platelets in animals and humans, and enhances survival during the acute radiation syndrome (ARS) in mice and non-human primates. 5-AED promotes survival of irradiated human hematopoietic progenitors in vitro through induction of Nuclear Factor-κB (NFκB)-dependent Granulocyte Colony-Stimulating Factor (G-CSF) expression, and causes elevations of circulating G-CSF and interleukin-6 (IL-6). However, the in vivo cellular and molecular effects of 5-AED are not well understood. The aim of this study was to investigate the mechanisms of action of 5-AED administered subcutaneously (s.c.) to mice 24 h before total body γ- or X-irradiation (TBI). We used neutralizing antibodies, flow cytometric functional assays of circulating innate immune cells, analysis of expression of genes related to cell cycle progression, DNA repair and apoptosis, and assessment of DNA strand breaks with halo-comet assays. Neutralization experiments indicated endogenous G-CSF but not IL-6 was involved in survival enhancement by 5-AED. In keeping with known effects of G-CSF on the innate immune system, s.c. 5-AED stimulated phagocytosis in circulating granulocytes and oxidative burst in monocytes. 5-AED induced expression of both bax and bcl-2 in irradiated animals. Cdkn1a and ddb1, but not gadd45a expression, were upregulated by 5-AED in irradiated mice. S.c. 5-AED administration caused decreased DNA strand breaks in splenocytes from irradiated mice. Our results suggest 5-AED survival enhancement is G-CSF-dependent, and that it stimulates innate immune cell function and reduces radiation-induced DNA damage via induction of genes that modulate cell cycle progression and apoptosis.
Studying ultrastructural changes could reveal novel pathophysiology of obese-asthmatic condition as existing concepts in asthma pathogenesis are based on the histological changes of the diseased airway. While asthma is defined in functional terms, the potential of electron microscopy (EM) in providing cellular and subcellular detail is underutilized. With this view, we have performed transmission EM in the lungs from allergic mice that show key features of asthma and high-fat- or high-fructose-fed mice that mimicked metabolic syndrome to illustrate the ultrastructural changes. The primary focus was epithelial injury and metaplasia, which are cardinal features of asthma and initiate airway remodeling. EM findings of the allergically inflamed mouse lungs correlate with known features of human asthma such as increased mitochondria in airway smooth muscle, platelet activation and subepithelial myofibroblasts. Interestingly, we found a clear and unambiguous evidence to suggest that ciliated cells can become goblet cells using immunoelectron microscopy. Additionally, we show for the first time the stressed mitochondria in the bronchial epithelia of high-fat- or high-fructose-fed mice even without allergen exposure. These results may stimulate interest in using EM in understanding novel pathological mechanisms for different subtypes of asthma including obese asthma.
p140Cap is an adaptor protein that negatively controls tumor cell properties, by inhibiting in vivo tumor growth and metastasis formation. Our previous data demonstrated that p140Cap interferes with tumor growth and impairs invasive properties of cancer cells inactivating signaling pathways, such as the tyrosine kinase Src or E-cadherin/EGFR cross-talk. In breast cancer p140Cap expression inversely correlates with tumor malignancy. p140Cap is composed of several conserved domains that mediate association with specific partners. Here we focus our attention on two domains of p140Cap, the TER (Tyrosine Enriched Region) which includes several tyrosine residues, and the CT (Carboxy Terminal) which contains a proline rich sequence, involved in binding to SH2 and SH3 domains, respectively. By generating stable cell lines expressing these two proteins, we demonstrate that both TER and CT domains maintain the ability to associate the C-terminal Src kinase (Csk) and Src, to inhibit Src activation and Focal adhesion kinase (Fak) phosphorylation, and to impair in vitro and in vivo tumor cell features. In particular expression of TER and CT proteins in cancer cells inhibits in vitro and in vivo growth and directional migration at a similar extent of the full length p140Cap protein. Moreover, by selective point mutations and deletion we show that the ability of the modules to act as negative regulators of cell migration and proliferation mainly resides on the two tyrosines (Y) inserted in the EPLYA and EGLYA sequences in the TER module and in the second proline-rich stretch contained in the CT protein. Gene signature of cells expressing p140Cap, TER or CT lead to the identification of a common pattern of 105 down-regulated and 128 up-regulated genes, suggesting that the three proteins can act through shared pathways. Overall, this work highlights that the TER and CT regions of p140Cap can efficiently suppress tumor cell properties, opening the perspective that short, defined p140Cap regions can have therapeutic effects.
p140Cap; breast cancer; lung cancer; colon cancer; cell signaling; Csk; Src
Several deleterious intra-acinar phenomena are simultaneously triggered on initiating acute pancreatitis. These culminate in acinar injury or inflammatory mediator generation in vitro and parenchymal damage in vivo. Supraphysiologic caerulein is one such initiator which simultaneously activates numerous signaling pathways including non-receptor tyrosine kinases such as of the Src family. It also causes a sustained increase in cytosolic calcium- a player thought to be crucial in regulating deleterious phenomena. We have shown Src to be involved in caerulein induced actin remodeling, and caerulein induced changes in the Golgi and post-Golgi trafficking to be involved in trypsinogen activation, which initiates acinar cell injury. However, it remains unclear whether an increase in cytosolic calcium is necessary to initiate acinar injury or if injury can be initiated at basal cytosolic calcium levels by an alternate pathway. To study the interplay between tyrosine kinase signaling and calcium, we treated mouse pancreatic acinar cells with the tyrosine phosphatase inhibitor pervanadate. We studied the effect of the clinically used Src inhibitor Dasatinib (BMS-354825) on pervanadate or caerulein induced changes in Src activation, trypsinogen activation, cell injury, upstream cytosolic calcium, actin and Golgi morphology. Pervanadate, like supraphysiologic caerulein, induced Src activation, redistribution of the F-actin from its normal location in the sub-apical area to the basolateral areas, and caused antegrade fragmentation of the Golgi. These changes, like those induced by supraphysiologic caerulein, were associated with trypsinogen activation and acinar injury, all of which were prevented by Dasatinib. Interestingly, however, pervanadate did not cause an increase in cytosolic calcium, and the caerulein induced increase in cytosolic calcium was not affected by Dasatinib. These findings suggest that intra-acinar deleterious phenomena may be initiated independent of an increase in cytosolic calcium. Other players resulting in acinar injury along with the Src family of tyrosine kinases remain to be explored.
We report a case of bilateral apical lung bullae that collapsed following an episode of community-acquired pneumonia with bilateral air fluid levels. With standard treatment for community-acquired pneumonia, management of a patient that may have qualified for bullectomy, (as in our case) showed complete resolution of all pathology without surgical intervention. Conservative management took precedence in alleviating pathology over surgical intervention.
emphysema/bullae; lung infection; infection; chest
This research has established a method for using single channel surface electromyogram (sEMG) recorded from the forearm to identify individual finger flexion. The technique uses the volume conduction properties of the tissues and uses the magnitude and density of the singularities in the signal as a measure of strength of the muscle activity.
SEMG was recorded from the flexor digitorum superficialis muscle during four different finger flexions. Based on the volume conduction properties of the tissues, sEMG was decomposed into wavelet maxima and grouped into four groups based on their magnitude. The mean magnitude and the density of each group were the inputs to the twin support vector machines (TSVM). The algorithm was tested on 11 able-bodied and one trans-radial amputated volunteer to determine the accuracy, sensitivity and specificity. The system was also tested to determine inter-experimental variations and variations due to difference in the electrode location.
Accuracy and sensitivity of identification of finger actions from single channel sEMG signal was 93% and 94% for able-bodied and 81% and 84% for trans-radial amputated respectively, and there was only a small inter-experimental variation.
Volume conduction properties based sEMG analysis provides a suitable basis for identifying finger flexions from single channel sEMG. The reported system requires supervised training and automatic classification.
The purification, preliminary characterization and crystallization of a lectin purified from M. indica latex are presented. Using synchrotron radiation, a diffraction data set to 2.8 Å resolution was collected.
A quantitatively major protein has been purified from the latex of Morus indica. The purified previously uncharacterized protein, M. indica lectin (MIL), was further shown to be a glycosylated tetramer and belongs to the family of jacalin-related lectins. Crystallization of MIL was also accomplished and the tetragonal crystals diffracted synchrotron X-rays to a resolution of 2.8 Å.
mulberry latex; lectins; tetramers; glycosylation
Suicide during pregnancy and the postpartum is a tragic event for the victim and profoundly impacts the baby, the family, and the community. Prior efforts to study risks for pregnancy-associated suicide have been hampered by the lack of data sources which capture pregnancy and delivery status of victims. Introduction of the United States National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS) offers new insights into violent deaths by linking multiple data sources and allowing better examination of psychosocial risk factors.
The analysis used data from 17 states reporting to the NVDRS from 2003–2007 to evaluate suicide patterns among pregnant, postpartum, and non-pregnant or postpartum women. Demographic factors, mental health status, substance use, precipitating circumstances, intimate partner problems, and suicide methods were compared among groups.
The 2083 female suicide victims of reproductive age demonstrated high prevalence of existing mental health diagnosis and current depressed mood with depressed mood significantly higher among postpartum women. Substance use and presence of other precipitating factors were high and similar among groups. Intimate partner problems were higher among pregnant and postpartum victims. Postpartum women were more likely die via asphyxia as cause of death compared to poisoning or firearms
These findings describe important mental health, substance use, and intimate partner problems seen with pregnancy-associated suicide. The study highlights mental health risk factors which could potentially be targeted for intervention in this vulnerable population.
Pregnancy; postpartum; suicide; mental health; intimate partner violence
The liver plays a central role in ethanol metabolism and oxidative stress is implicated in alcohol-mediated liver injury. β-Catenin regulates hepatic metabolic zonation and adaptive response to oxidative stress. We hypothesized that β-catenin regulates the hepatic response to ethanol ingestion. Female liver-specific β-catenin knockout (KO) mice and wild type (WT) littermates were fed the Lieber-Decarli liquid diet (5% ethanol) in a pair-wise fashion. Liver histology, biochemistry, and gene expression studies were performed. Plasma alcohol and ammonia levels were measured using standard assays. Ethanol-fed KO mice exhibited systemic toxicity and early mortality. KO mice exhibited severe macrovesicular steatosis and five to six-fold higher serum ALT and AST levels. KO mice had modest increase in hepatic oxidative stress, lower expression of mitochondrial superoxide dismutase (SOD-2), and lower citrate synthase activity, the first step in the tricarboxylic acid cycle. N-Acetyl cysteine (NAC) did not prevent ethanol-induced mortality in KO mice. In WT livers, β-catenin was found to co-precipitate with FoxO3, the upstream regulator of SOD-2. Hepatic alcohol dehydrogenase and aldehyde dehydrogenase activities and expression were lower in KO mice. Hepatic cytochrome P450 2E1 protein levels were upregulated in ethanol-fed WT mice but were nearly undetectable in KO mice. These changes in ethanol-metabolizing enzymes were associated with 30-fold higher blood alcohol levels in KO mice.
β-catenin is essential for hepatic ethanol metabolism and plays a protective role in alcohol-mediated liver steatosis. Our results strongly suggest that integration of these functions by β-catenin is critical for adaptation to ethanol ingestion in vivo.
Wnt pathway; Alcohol dehydrogenase; Cyp2E1; SOD-2; oxidative stress
Airway epithelial injury is the hallmark of various respiratory diseases, but its mechanisms remain poorly understood. While 13-S-hydroxyoctadecadienoic acid (13-S-HODE) is produced in high concentration during mitochondrial degradation in reticulocytes little is known about its role in asthma pathogenesis. Here, we show that extracellular 13-S-HODE induces mitochondrial dysfunction and airway epithelial apoptosis. This is associated with features of severe airway obstruction, lung remodeling, increase in epithelial stress related proinflammatory cytokines and drastic airway neutrophilia in mouse. Further, 13-S-HODE induced features are attenuated by inhibiting Transient Receptor Potential Cation Channel, Vanilloid-type 1 (TRPV1) both in mouse model and human bronchial epithelial cells. These findings are relevant to human asthma, as 13-S-HODE levels are increased in human asthmatic airways. Blocking of 13-S-HODE activity or disruption of TRPV1 activity attenuated airway injury and asthma mimicking features in murine allergic airway inflammation. These findings indicate that 13-S-HODE induces mitochondrial dysfunction and airway epithelial injury.
Objective: Primary bony tumors of the chest wall are usually benign and most commonly located in the ribs or sternum. Chondrosarcoma is regarded as one of the most frequent primary malignancies of the chest wall and its incidence after a sternotomy for a cardiac procedure is extremely rare. We present a case of sternal chondrosarcoma. Methods: The patient presented with a sternal mass 4 years after undergoing coronary artery bypass grafting for ischemic coronary artery disease. The mass originally emanated from the upper portion of the patients’ sternum and then rapidly enlarged to include the anterior aspects of his neck. Radiologic imaging studies were undertaken: computed tomographic scan and magnetic resonance imaging, with surgical intervention for excision. Results: Computed tomographic scan and magnetic resonance imaging established an 8.4 × 6.2 × 8.6 cm3 complex solid tissue mass within the lower neck arising from the sternal manubrium, with extensive bone destruction. Computed tomography-guided biopsy showed cells of uncertain significance. Surgical excision was performed and the mass was diagnosed as a grade II chondrosarcoma. Discussion: Primary sarcomas of the sternum though uncommon are potentially curable with wide surgical excision. Success depends on tumor histologic type and grade, which dictate recurrence.
Objective: Congenitally corrected transposition of great arteries (CCTGA) is characterized by atrioventricular and ventriculoarterial discordance. Characterizations of these anomalies are important because they may influence surgical approach and management. Methods: We present a case of newly diagnosed CCTGA at the age of 50. He presented with sudden onset of shortness of breath for the first time and was diagnosed with CCTGA. Echocardiogram, magnetic resonance imaging, and cardiac catheterization were utilized to elucidate the pathology. Results: Intraoperatively, patient's CCTGA and ventricularization of the right ventricle were confirmed. The severe systemic atrioventricular valve regurgitation was replaced with a bioprosthetic valve (Medtronic Mosaic No. 29) with placement of epicardial ventricular leads for possible future placement of automatic implantable cardioverter defibrillators. Pathology report confirmed a degeneration of the systemic atrioventricular valve. Conclusions: Significant coronary artery anomalies have also been described in literature with CCTGA. The variances encountered in this case are excellent examples of the intricacies associated in diagnosis and surgical care in patients with CCTGA.
Wilms' tumor 1 antigen (WT1) is overexpressed in acute myeloid leukemia (AML), a high-risk neoplasm warranting development of novel immunotherapeutic approaches. Unfortunately, clinical immunotherapeutic use of WT1 peptides against AML has been inconclusive. With the rationale of stimulating multiantigenic responses against WT1, we genetically programmed long-lasting dendritic cells capable of producing and processing endogenous WT1 epitopes. A tricistronic lentiviral vector co-expressing a truncated form of WT1 (lacking the DNA-binding domain), granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), and interleukin-4 (IL-4) was used to transduce human monocytes ex vivo. Overnight transduction induced self-differentiation of monocytes into immunophenotypically stable “SmartDC/tWT1” (GM-CSF+, IL-4+, tWT1+, IL-6+, IL-8+, TNF-α+, MCP-1+, HLA-DR+, CD86+, CCR2+, CCR5+) that were viable for 3 weeks in vitro. SmartDC/tWT1 were produced with peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) obtained from an FLT3-ITD+ AML patient and surplus material from a donor lymphocyte infusion (DLI) and used to expand CD8+ T cells in vitro. Expanded cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) showed antigen-specific reactivity against WT1 and against WT1+ leukemia cells. SmartDC/tWT1 injected s.c. into Nod.Rag1−/−.IL2rγc−/− mice were viable in vivo for more than three weeks. Migration of human T cells (huCTLs) to the immunization site was demonstrated following adoptive transfer of huCTLs into mice immunized with SmartDC/tWT1. Furthermore, SmartDC/tWT1 immunization plus adoptive transfer of T cells reactive against WT1 into mice resulted in growth arrest of a WT1+ tumor. Gene array analyses of SmartDC/tWT1 demonstrated upregulation of several genes related to innate immunity. Thus, SmartDC/tWT1 can be produced in a single day of ex vivo gene transfer, are highly viable in vivo, and have great potential for use as immunotherapy against malignant transformation overexpressing WT1.
Sundarasetty and colleagues generate long-lasting, self-differentiated myeloid-derived antigen-presenting cells reactive against tumors (SmartDC) expressing a truncated form of Wilms' tumor 1 antigen (tWT1). SmartDC/tWT1 generated from a patient with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) efficiently stimulated expansion and activation of anti-WT1 cytotoxic responses against primary blasts obtained from the patient. SmartDC/tWT1 injected into a mouse model of adoptive T cell transfer remained viable in vivo for more than 3 weeks, and it was capable of attracting cytotoxic T cells.
Many plants employ energized loading strategies to accumulate osmotically-active solutes into the phloem of source organs to accentuate the hydrostatic pressure gradients that drive the flow of water, nutrients and signals from source to sinks. Proton-coupled symport of sugars from the apoplasm into the phloem symplasm is the best studied phloem-loading mechanism. As an alternative, numerous species use a polymer trapping mechanism to load through symplasm: sucrose enters the phloem through specialized plasmodesmata and is converted to raffinose-family oligosaccharides (RFOs) which accumulate because of their larger size. In this study, metabolic engineering was used to generate RFOs at the inception of the translocation stream of Arabidopsis thaliana, which loads from the apoplasm and transports predominantly sucrose, and the fate of the sugars throughout the plant determined. Three genes, GALACTINOL SYNTHASE, RAFFINOSE SYNTHASE and STACHYOSE SYNTHASE, were expressed from promoters specific to the companion cells of minor veins. Two transgenic lines homozygous for all three genes (GRS63 and GRS47) were selected for further analysis. Three-week-old plants of both lines had RFO levels approaching 50% of total soluble sugar. RFOs were also identified in exudates from excised leaves of transgenic plants whereas levels were negligible in exudates from wild type (WT) leaves. Differences in starch accumulation between WT and GRS63 and GRS47 lines were not observed. Similarly, there were no differences in vegetative growth between WT and engineered plants, but the latter flowered slightly earlier. Finally, since the sugar composition of the translocation stream appeared altered, we tested for an impact on green peach aphid (Myzus persicae Sulzer) feeding. When given a choice between WT and transgenic plants, green peach aphids preferred settling on the WT plants. Furthermore, green peach aphid fecundity was lower on the transgenic plants compared to the WT plants. When added to an artificial diet, RFOs did not have a negative effect on aphid fecundity, suggesting that although aphid resistance in the transgenic plants is enhanced, it is not due to direct toxicity of RFO toward the insect.
raffinose family oligosaccharides; green peach aphid; phloem transport; sugar transport; metabolic engineering
The literature is replete with evaluations of failed surgery, illustrating a 9.5%–25% reoperation rate. Speculated causes of post lumbar surgery syndrome include epidural fibrosis, acquired stenosis, recurrent disc herniation, sacroiliac joint pain, and facet joint pain among other causes.
Patients (n = 120) were randomly assigned to two groups with a 2-year follow-up. Group I (control group, n = 60) received caudal epidural injections with catheterization up to S3 with local anesthetic (lidocaine 2%, 5 mL), nonparticulate betamethasone (6 mg, 1 mL), and 6 mL of 0.9% sodium chloride solution. Group II (intervention group, n = 60) received percutaneous adhesiolysis of the targeted area, with targeted delivery of lidocaine 2% (5 mL), 10% hypertonic sodium chloride solution (6 mL), and nonparticulate betamethasone (6 mg). The multiple outcome measures included the Numeric Rating Scale, the Oswestry Disability Index 2.0, employment status, and opioid intake with assessments at 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24 months posttreatment. Primary outcome was defined as 50% improvement in pain and Oswestry Disability Index scores.
Significant improvement with at least 50% relief with pain and improvement in functional status was illustrated in 82% of patients at the 2-year follow-up in the intervention group compared to 5% in the control group receiving caudal epidural injections. The average number of procedures over a period of 2 years in Group II was 6.4 ± 2.35 with overall total relief of approximately 78 weeks out of 104 weeks.
The results of this study show significant improvement in 82% of patients over a period of 2 years with an average of six to seven procedures of 1-day percutaneous adhesiolysis in patients with failed back surgery syndrome.
epidural adhesions; epidural steroid injections; epidural fibrosis
The disaccharide trehalose and trehalose-6-phosphate that are present in trace amounts are suggested to have a signaling function in plants. Recently, it was demonstrated that trehalose metabolism contributes to Arabidopsis thaliana defense against the green peach aphid (GPA; Myzus persicae Sülzer), an important insect pest of a large variety of plants. TPS11 (TREHALOSE PHOSPHATE SYNTHASE11)-dependent trehalose metabolism was shown to curtail GPA infestation by promoting starch accumulation and expression of the PAD4 (PHYTOALEXIN-DEFICIENT4) gene, which has important roles in regulating antibiosis and antixenosis against GPA. Here we show that trehalose metabolism is similarly activated in leaves of GPA-infested tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) plants and likely contributes to tomato defense against GPA. GPA-infested leaves of tomato accumulated trehalose, which was accompanied by the transient upregulation of SlTPS11, a homolog of the Arabidopsis TPS11. GPA-infestation was also accompanied by starch accumulation and the upregulation of SlPAD4, the tomato homolog of Arabidopsis PAD4. Furthermore, trehalose application induced SlPAD4 expression and starch accumulation, and curtailed GPA infestation, suggesting that like in Arabidopsis trehalose contributes to tomato defense against GPA.
Myzus persicae; SlPAD4; SlTPS11; Solanum lycopersicum; plant defense; starch; trehalose
Acute pancreatitis is a painful, life-threatening disorder of the pancreas whose etiology is often multi-factorial. It is of great importance to understand the interplay between factors that predispose patients to develop the disease. One such factor is an excessive elevation in pancreatic acinar cell Ca2+. These aberrant Ca2+ elevations are triggered by release of Ca2+ from apical Ca2+ pools that are gated by the inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor (IP3R) types 2 and 3. In this study, we examined the role of IP3R type 2 (IP3R2) using mice deficient in this Ca2+ release channel (IP3R2−/−). Using live acinar cell Ca2+ imaging we found that loss of IP3R2 reduced the amplitude of the apical Ca2+ signal and caused a delay in its initiation. This was associated with a reduction in carbachol-stimulated amylase release and an accumulation of zymogen granules (ZGs). Specifically, there was a 2-fold increase in the number of ZGs (P<0.05) and an expansion of the ZG pool area within the cell. There was also a 1.6- and 2.6-fold increase in cellular amylase and trypsinogen, respectively. However, the mice did not have evidence of pancreatic injury at baseline, other than an elevated serum amylase level. Further, pancreatitis outcomes using a mild caerulein hyperstimulation model were similar between IP3R2−/− and wild type mice. In summary, IP3R2 modulates apical acinar cell Ca2+ signals and pancreatic enzyme secretion. IP3R-deficient acinar cells accumulate ZGs, but the mice do not succumb to pancreatic damage or worse pancreatitis outcomes.
Chloronitrophenols (CNPs) are widely used in the synthesis of dyes, drugs and pesticides, and constitute a major group of environmental pollutants. 4-Chloro-2-nitrophenol (4C2NP) is an isomer of CNPs that has been detected in various industrial effluents. A number of physicochemical methods have been used for treatment of wastewater containing 4C2NP. These methods are not as effective as microbial degradation, however.
A 4C2NP-degrading bacterium, Exiguobacterium sp. PMA, which uses 4C2NP as the sole carbon and energy source was isolated from a chemically-contaminated site in India. Exiguobacterium sp. PMA degraded 4C2NP with the release of stoichiometeric amounts of chloride and ammonium ions. The effects of different substrate concentrations and various inoculum sizes on degradation of 4C2NP were investigated. Exiguobacterium sp. PMA degraded 4C2NP up to a concentration of 0.6 mM. High performance liquid chromatography and gas chromatography–mass spectrometry identified 4-chloro-2-aminophenol (4C2AP) and 2-aminophenol (2AP) as possible metabolites of the 4C2NP degradation pathway. The crude extract of 4C2NP-induced PMA cells contained enzymatic activity for 4C2NP reductase and 4C2AP dehalogenase, suggesting the involvement of these enzymes in the degradation of 4C2NP. Microcosm studies using sterile and non-sterile soils spiked with 4C2NP were carried out to monitor the bioremediation potential of Exiguobacterium sp. PMA. The bioremediation of 4C2NP by Exiguobacterium sp. PMA was faster in non-sterilized soil than sterilized soil.
Our studies indicate that Exiguobacterium sp. PMA may be useful for the bioremediation of 4C2NP-contaminated sites. This is the first report of (i) the formation of 2AP in the 4C2NP degradation pathway by any bacterium and (iii) the bioremediation of 4C2NP by any bacterium.
4-Chloro-2-nitrophenol; 4-Chloro-2-aminophenol; 2-aminophenol; Biodegradation; Bioremediation; Soil microcosm
Ever since the discovery of the role of bacteriophytochrome (BphP) in inducing carotenoid synthesis in Deinococcus radiodurans in response to light the role of BphPs in other non-photosynthetic bacteria is not clear yet. Azospirillum brasilense, a non-photosynthetic rhizobacterium, harbours a pair of BphPs out of which AbBphP1 is a homolog of AtBphP1 of Agrobacterium tumefaciens. By overexpression, purification, biochemical and spectral characterization we have shown that AbBphP1 is a photochromic bacteriophytochrome. Phenotypic study of the ΔAbBphP1 mutant showed that it is required for the survival of A. brasilense on minimal medium under red light. The mutant also showed reduced chemotaxis towards dicarboxylates and increased sensitivity to the photooxidative stress. Unlike D. radiodurans, AbBphP1 was not involved in controlling carotenoid synthesis. Proteome analysis of the ΔAbBphP1 indicated that AbBphP1 is involved in inducing a cellular response that enables A. brasilense in regenerating proteins that might be damaged due to photodynamic stress.
Threats of nuclear and other radiologic exposures have been increasing but no countermeasure for acute radiation syndrome has been approved by regulatory authorities. In prior publications we have demonstrated the efficacy of tocopherol succinate (TS) as a promising radiation countermeasure with the potential to protect against lethal doses of ionizing radiation exposure. The aim of this study was to gain further insight regarding how TS protects mice against a lethal dose of radiation. CD2F1 mice were injected subcutaneously with 400 mg/kg of TS, and 24 h later exposed to 60Co γ–radiation. Intestinal tissues or spleen/thymus were harvested after irradiation and analyzed for CD68-positive inflammatory cells and apoptotic cells by immunostaining of jejunal cross-sections. Comet assay was used to analyze DNA damage in various tissues. Phospho-histone H3(pH3) and the proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) were used as mitotic markers for immunostaining jejunal cross-sections. We observed that injecting TS significantly decreased the number of CD68-positive cells, DNA damage and apoptotic cells (BAX, caspase 3 and cleaved poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-positive cells) as judged by various apoptotic pathway markers. TS treatment also increased proliferating cells in irradiated mice. Results of this study further support our contention that TS protects mice against lethal doses of ionizing radiation by inhibiting radiation-induced apoptosis and DNA damage while enhancing cell proliferation.
Apoptosis; mice; radiation; tocopherol succinate
Transfusion-related acute lung injury (TRALI) is an underdiagnosed and underreported syndrome which by itself is the third leading cause of transfusion-related mortality. The incidence of TRALI is reported to be 1 in 2000 to 5000 transfusions. When combined with uncontrollable bleeding, survival is unachievable. We report the case of a 25-year-old man, who underwent open heart surgery as an infant to correct his congenital heart disease in association with right pulmonary artery atresia. He presented with hemoptysis secondary to aspergilloma and required a pneumonectomy of the nonfunctional right lung. During pneumolysis, significant bleeding occurred from the superior vena cava. The patient required a blood transfusion and was placed on cardiopulmonary bypass to control the bleeding. Simultaneous occurrence of severe pulmonary edema and retroperitoneal bleeding were noted. Approximately 8 L of frothy edema fluid were drained from the only functional left lung starting ~15 minutes after the transfusion and lasting for several hours until the end of the case. It most likely represented TRALI syndrome. Increasing abdominal girth and poor volume return to the pump were consistent with and pathognomonic for retroperitoneal bleeding. Though primary surgical bleeding in the chest was controlled successfully and a pneumonectomy performed without further difficulty, we were unable to separate the patient from cardiopulmonary bypass due to the inability to oxygenate. As a result, we could not reverse the anti-coagulation which potentially exacerbated the retroperitoneal bleeding. After multiple unsuccessful attempts the patient succumbed. This ill-fated case demonstrates the quandary of obtaining vascular access for emergency cardiopulmonary bypass while in the right thoracotomy position. It may be beneficial to have both the femoral artery and vein cannulated before positioning a patient in a lateral decubitus position. In addition, early direct access to the right atrium may obviate a need for femoral venous cannulation. Also, adult extracorporeal membrane oxygenation may be indicated if faced with such a severe pulmonary edema without ongoing hemorrhage.
Transfusion; lung injury; pulmonary atresia; retroperitoneal hematoma
Knowledge of the wide spectrum of the oral markers of diabetes is imperative as one frequently encounters individuals with undetected, untreated or poorly controlled diabetes.
The objective was to study the oral manifestations in type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM) and to establish an association between oral manifestations and associated microvascular and macrovascular complications.
Materials and Methods:
50 cases of DM were selected who had oral complications. The control group comprised 50 age- and sex-matched diabetic patients without any oral complications.
Oral manifestations in DM included periodontal disease in 34%, oral candidiasis in 24%, tooth loss in 24%, oral mucosal ulcers in 22%, taste impairment in 20%, xerostomia and salivary gland hypofunction in 14%, dental caries in 24%, and burning mouth sensation in 10% cases. Fasting [(FBG) (P = 0.003)] and postprandial blood glucose [(PPBG) (P = 0.0003)] levels were significantly higher among cases. The P values for neuropathy, retinopathy, nephropathy, cardiovascular disease, dyslipidemia, and sepsis were 0.0156, 0.0241, 0.68, 0.4047, 0.0278, and 0.3149, respectively, which were significant for neuropathy, retinopathy, and dyslipidemia.
Several oral complications are seen among diabetics. Association of oral markers in DM and microvascular complications suggests that there is a significant association between the two.
Diabetes mellitus; dyslipidemia; neuropathy; oral complications; retinopathy
Homicide and suicide are two important and potentially preventable causes of maternal injury. We analyzed data from the National Violent Death Reporting System to estimate the rates of pregnancy-associated homicide and suicide in a multi-state sample, to compare these rates with other causes of maternal mortality, and to describe victims’ demographic characteristics.
We analyzed data from female victims of reproductive age from 2003–2007. We identified pregnancy-associated violent deaths as deaths due to homicide or suicide during pregnancy or within the first year postpartum. We calculated the rates of pregnancy-associated homicide and suicide as the number of deaths per 100,000 live births in the sample population. We used descriptive statistics to report victims’ demographic characteristics and prevalence of intimate partner violence (IPV).
There were 94 counts of pregnancy-associated suicide and 139 counts of pregnancy-associated homicide, yielding pregnancy-associated suicide and homicide rates of 2.0 and 2.9 deaths/100,000 live births, respectively. Victims of pregnancy-associated suicide were significantly more likely to be older and of Caucasian or American Indian descent as compared to all live births in NVDRS states. Pregnancy-associated homicide victims were significantly more likely to be at the extremes of the age range and African American. 54.3% of pregnancy-associated suicides involved intimate partner conflict that appeared to contribute to the suicide. 45.3% of pregnancy-associated homicides were IPV-associated.
Our results indicate that pregnancy-associated homicide and suicide are important contributors to maternal mortality and confirm the need to evaluate the relationships between socio demographic disparities and IPV with pregnancy-associated violent death.
Study Design. A randomized, double-blind, active-control trial. Objective. To determine the clinical effectiveness of therapeutic thoracic facet joint nerve blocks with or without steroids in managing chronic mid back and upper back pain. Summary of Background Data. The prevalence of thoracic facet joint pain has been established as 34% to 42%. Multiple therapeutic techniques utilized in managing chronic thoracic pain of facet joint origin include medial branch blocks, radiofrequency neurotomy, and intraarticular injections.
Methods. This randomized double-blind active controlled trial was performed in 100 patients with 50 patients in each group who received medial branch blocks with local anesthetic alone or local anesthetic and steroids.
Outcome measures included the numeric rating scale (NRS), Oswestry Disability Index (ODI), opioid intake, and work status, at baseline, 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24 months.
Results. Significant improvement with significant pain relief and functional status improvement of 50% or more were observed in 80% of the patients in Group I and 84% of the patients in Group II at 2-year followup.
Conclusions. Therapeutic medial branch blocks of thoracic facets with or without steroids may provide a management option for chronic function-limiting thoracic pain of facet joint origin.