Highly pathogenic H5N1 influenza A virus remains a substantial threat to public health. To understand the molecular basis and host mechanism for the high virulence of H5N1 viruses in mammals, we compared two H5N1 isolates which have similar genetic backgrounds but greatly differ in their virulence in mice. A/Chicken/Jiangsu/k0402/2010 (CK10) is highly pathogenic, whereas A/Goose/Jiangsu/k0403/2010 (GS10) is nonpathogenic. We first showed that CK10 elicited a more potent innate immune response than did GS10 in mouse lungs by increasing the number and expression levels of activated genes. We then generated a series of reassortants between the two viruses and evaluated their virulence in mice. Inclusion of the CK10 PA gene in the GS10 background resulted in a dramatic increase in virulence. Conversely, expression of the GS10 PA gene in the CK10 background significantly attenuated the virulence. These results demonstrated that the PA gene mainly determines the pathogenicity discrepancy between CK10 and GS10 in mice. We further determined that arginine (R) at position 353 of the PA gene contributes to the high virulence of CK10 in mice. The reciprocal substitution at position 353 in PA or the exchange of the entire PA gene largely caused the transfer of viral phenotypes, including virus replication, polymerase activity, and manipulation of the innate response, between CK10 and GS10. We therefore defined a novel molecular marker associated with the high virulence of H5N1 influenza viruses, providing further insights into the pathogenesis of H5N1 viruses in mammals.
In this study, the complete genomic sequence of a novel reassortant H9N2 avian influenza virus (AIV) from domestic ducks in eastern China was reported. Phylogenetic analysis showed that seven of the eight genes were all highly homologous to the chicken-origin H9N2 viruses, whereas the PB2 gene was homologous to the human-origin H1N1 virus, which suggested that domestic ducks might play a key role in the genetic reassortment and evolution of H9N2 AIVs in eastern China.
Motivation: Tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) has been routinely used in proteomics studies. Post-translational modification (PTM) identification is a challenging problem in tandem mass spectral analysis.
Results: In this article, we define two scoring functions for identifying peptides/proteins with PTMs from MS/MS spectra: match scores and diagonal scores, as well as two spectral identification problems based on the two scores. We propose several index-based algorithms for the two problems. Both theoretical and experimental analyses show that the index-based algorithms significantly improve on speed when compared with existing algorithms.
To investigate the expression of chemokine ligand 2 (CCL2), chemokine ligand 18 (CCL18), and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in peripheral blood of patients with gastric cancer and their correlation with presence of malignancy and disease progression.
Sixty patients with pathological proved gastric cancer were prospectively included into study. The levels of CCL2, CCL18, and VEGF in peripheral blood were examined by enzyme-linked immunosorbentassay (ELISA). Peripheral blood from 20 healthy people was examined as control.
The preoperative serum levels of CCL2, CCL18 and VEGF in gastric cancer patients were significantly higher than that of controls (P <0.001, P <0.001, and P <0.001, respectively). ROC curve analysis showed that with a cut-off value of ≥1272.8, the VEGF*CCL2 predicted the presence of gastric cancer with 83% sensitivity and 80% specificity. Preoperative serum CCL2 was significantly correlated to N stage (P =0.040); CCL18 associated with N stage (P =0.002), and TNM stage (P =0.002); VEGF correlated to T stage (P =0.000), N stage (P =0.015), and TNM stage (P =0.000).
Preoperative serum levels of CCL2 and VEGF could play a crucial role in predicting the presence and progression of gastric cancer.
Gastric cancer; Diagnosis; Biological markers
For the first time we report the complete genomic sequence of an H11N3 influenza virus from domestic ducks in China. Phylogenetic analysis showed that the H11N3 virus was a novel reassortant with its genes from different subtypes of domestic duck-origin avian influenza viruses, which further underlined that domestic ducks play a key role in the genetic reassortment and evolution of influenza viruses in China.
Here, we report the genomic sequence of a Chinese reassortant H5N2 avian influenza virus which possessed the polybasic motif PLREKRRK-R/GL at the hemagglutinin cleavage site. Phylogenetic analysis showed that all eight genes were of the Eurasian lineage, five of which were highly homologous to the endemic clade 2.3.4 H5N1 viruses and their H5N5 reassortant descendants. These data suggested that novel multisubtypic NA reassortants bearing the H5N1 backbone could be generated through genetic reassortment in H5N1 circulating regions, which will help in understanding the evolution and segment reassortment mechanism of H5 subtype avian influenza viruses.
Bowel resection may lead to short bowel syndrome (SBS), which often requires parenteral nutrition (PN) due to inadequate intestinal adaptation. The objective of this study was to determine the time course of adaptation and proglucagon system responses after bowel resection in a PN-dependent rat model of SBS.
Rats underwent jugular catheter placement and a 60% jejunoileal resection + cecectomy with jejunoileal anastomosis or transection control surgery. Rats were maintained exclusively with PN and killed at 4 hours to 12 days. A nonsurgical group served as baseline. Bowel growth and digestive capacity were assessed by mucosal mass, protein, DNA, histology, and sucrase activity. Plasma insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) and bioactive glucagon-like peptide 2 (GLP-2) were measured by radioimmunoassay.
Jejunum cellularity changed significantly over time with resection but not transection, peaking at days 3–4 and declining by day 12. Jejunum sucrase-specific activity decreased significantly with time after resection and transection. Colon crypt depth increased over time with resection but not transection, peaking at days 7–12. Plasma bioactive GLP-2 and colon proglucagon levels peaked from days 4–7 after resection and then approached baseline. Plasma IGF-I increased with resection through day 12. Jejunum and colon GLP-2 receptor RNAs peaked by day 1 and then declined below baseline.
After bowel resection resulting in SBS in the rat, peak proglucagon, plasma GLP-2, and GLP-2 receptor levels are insufficient to promote jejunal adaptation. The colon adapts with resection, expresses proglucagon, and should be preserved when possible in massive intestinal resection.
intestinal failure; intestinal adaptation; GI hormones; short bowel syndrome; bowel resection
Glucagon-like peptide-2 (GLP-2) is a nutrient-dependent proglucagon-derived hormone that stimulates intestinal adaptive growth. Our aim was to determine whether exogenous GLP-2 increases resection-induced adaptation without diminishing endogenous proglucagon and GLP-2 receptor expression.
Rats underwent transection or 70% jejunoileal resection ± GLP-2 infusion (100 μg/kg body weight/d) and were fed a semipurified diet with continuous infusion of GLP-2 or saline by means of jugular catheter. After 7 days, body weight, mucosal cellularity (dry mass, protein and DNA), crypt–villus height, and crypt cell proliferation (by bromodeoxyuridine staining) were determined. Plasma bioactive GLP-2 (by radioimmunoassay), proglucagon and GLP-2 receptor mRNA expression (by Northern blot and real-time reverse transcriptase quantitative polymerase chain reaction) were measured. GLP-2 receptor was colocalized to neuroendocrine markers by immunohistochemistry.
Low-dose exogenous GLP-2 increased mucosal cellularity and crypt–villus height in the duodenum, jejunum, and ileum; enterocyte proliferation in the jejunal crypt; and duodenal and jejunal sucrase segmental activity. Plasma bioactive GLP-2 concentration increased 70% upon resection, with an additional 54% increase upon GLP-2 infusion in resected rats (P < .05). Ileal proglucagon mRNA expression increased with resection, and exogenous ileum GLP-2 failed to blunt this response. Exogenous GLP-2 increased ileum GLP-2 receptor expression 3-fold in resected animals and was colocalized to vasoactive intestinal peptide-positive and endothelial nitric oxide synthase-expressing enteric neurons and serotonin-containing enteroendocrine cells in the jejunum and ileum of resected rats.
Exogenous GLP-2 augments adaptive growth and digestive capacity of the residual small intestine in a rat model of mid–small bowel resection by increasing plasma GLP-2 concentrations and GLP-2 receptor expression without diminishing endogenous proglucagon expression.
intestinal failure; intestinal adaptation; GI hormones; short bowel syndrome; bowel resection
The H3 subtype avian influenza virus (AIV) can provide genes for human influenza virus through gene reassortment, which raises great concerns in terms of its potential threat to human health. Here, we report the complete genome sequence of a novel H3N2 AIV isolated from domestic ducks in the Jiangsu province of eastern China in 2004, which is a natural recombinant virus whose genes are derived from H3N8, H5N1, H5N2, H11N2, H4N6, and H1N1 AIVs. This genome will help to understand the epidemiology and molecular characteristics of H3N2 influenza virus in eastern China.
Here, we report the complete genome sequence of an H3N6 avian influenza virus (AIV) isolated from domestic ducks in Jiangsu province of eastern China in 2010. Phylogenetic analysis showed that the H3N6 virus is a natural recombinant virus whose genes were derived from H3N8, H4N6, H6N6, H7N7, and H11N2 AIVs. This analysis will help to understand the molecular characteristics and evolution of the H3N6 influenza virus in eastern China.
Here, we report the complete genomic sequence of a novel reassortant H4N2 influenza virus isolated from domestic ducks in the Jiangsu province of China in 2011. Phylogenetic analysis showed that all the viral genes except for hemagglutinin (HA) were highly homologous to the clade 2.3.4 H5N2 viruses. The data suggest that genetic reassortment occurred between H4 and H5N2 avian influenza viruses, which highlights the role of domestic poultry as a reassortment vessel in China.
To kill invading bacteria, neutrophils must interpret spatial cues, migrate, and reach target sites. Although initiation of chemotactic migration has been extensively studied, little is known about its termination. Here we report that two mitogen-activated protein kinases played opposing roles in neutrophil trafficking. The extracellular signal-regulated kinase (Erk) potentiated G protein-coupled receptor kinase GRK2 activity and inhibited neutrophil migration, whereas p38 MAPK acted as a non-canonical GRK that phosphorylated the formyl peptide receptor FPR1 and facilitated neutrophil migration by blocking GRK2 function. Therefore, the dynamic balance between Erk and p38 MAPK controls neutrophil “stop” and “go” behaviors, ensuring neutrophils precisely reach their final destination as the first line of host-defense.
Genotype VIId Newcastle disease virus (NDV) isolates induce more severe damage to lymphoid tissues, especially to the spleen, when compared to virulent viruses of other genotypes. However, the biological basis of the unusual pathological changes remains largely unknown.
Virus replication, cytokine gene expression profile and cell death response in chicken splenocytes infected with two genotype VIId NDV strains (JS5/05 and JS3/05), genotype IX NDV strain F48E8 and genotype IV NDV strain Herts/33 were evaluated. Statistical significance of differences between experimental groups was determined using the Independent-Samples T test.
JS5/05 and JS3/05 caused hyperinduction of type I interferons (IFNs) (IFN-α and -β) during detection period compared to F48E8 and Herts/33. JS5/05 increased expression level of IFN-γ gene at 6 h post-inoculation (pi) and JS3/05 initiated sustained activation of IFN-γ within 24 h pi, whereas transcriptional levels of IFN-γ remained unchanged at any of the time points during infection of F48E8 and Herts/33. In addition, compared to F48E8 and Herts/33, JS3/05 and JS5/05 significantly increased the amount of free nucleosomal DNA in splenocytes at 6 and 24 h pi respectively. Annexin-V and Proidium iodid (PI) double staining of infected cells showed that cell death induced by JS3/05 and JS5/05 was characterized by marked necrosis compared to F48E8 and Herts/33 at 24 h pi. These results indicate that genotype VIId NDV strains JS3/05 and JS5/05 elicited stronger innate immune and cell death responses in chicken splenocytes than F48E8 and Herts/33. JS5/05 replicated at a significantly higher efficiency in splenocytes than F48E8 and Herts/33. Early excessive cell death induced by JS3/05 infection partially impaired virus replication.
Viral dysregulaiton of host response may be relevant to the severe pathological manifestation in the spleen following genotype VIId NDV infection.
Innate immune response; Cell death; Splenic necrosis; Genotype VIId Newcastle disease virus
Most HIV transmission in women occurs through the cervicovaginal mucosa, which is coated by a bacterial biofilm including Lactobacillus. This commensal bacterium plays a role in maintaining healthy mucosa and can be genetically engineered to produce anti-viral peptides. Here, we report a 63% reduction in transmission of a chimeric simian/human immunodeficiency virus (SHIVSF162P3) after repeated vaginal challenges of macaques treated with Lactobacillus jensenii expressing the HIV-1 entry inhibitor cyanovirin-N. Furthermore, peak viral loads in colonized macaques with breakthrough infection were reduced 6-fold. Colonization and prolonged anti-viral protein secretion by the genetically engineered lactobacilli did not cause any increase in proinflammatory markers. These findings lay the foundation for an accessible and durable approach to reduce heterosexual transmission of HIV in women that is coitally independent, inexpensive, and enhances the natural protective effects of the vaginal microflora.
Development of small-molecule inhibitors targeting phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) has been an appealing strategy for the treatment of various types of cancers.
Our approach was to perform structural modification and optimization based on previously identified morpholinoquinoxaline derivative WR1 and piperidinylquinoxaline derivative WR23 with a total of forty-five novel piperazinylquinoxaline derivatives synthesized. Most target compounds showed low micromolar to nanomolar antiproliferative potency against five human cancer cell lines using MTT method. Selected compounds showed potent PI3Kα inhibitory activity in a competitive fluorescent polarization assay, such as compound 22 (IC50 40 nM) and 41 (IC50: 24 nM), which induced apoptosis in PC3 cells. Molecular docking analysis was performed to explore possible binding modes between target compounds and PI3K.
The identified novel piperazinylquinoxaline derivatives that showed potent PI3Kα inhibitory activity and cellular antiproliferative potency may be promising agents for potential applications in cancer treatment.
Short-term energy deprivation reduces leptin concentrations and alters the levels of circulating hormones of the hypothalamic–pituitary–peripheral axis in lean subjects. Whether the reduction in leptin concentration during long-term weight loss in obese individuals is linked to the same neuroendocrine changes seen in lean, leptin sensitive subjects remains to be fully clarified.
Twenty-four overweight and obese adults (16 women and 8 men; BMI: 27.5–38.0 kg/m2) were prescribed a hypocaloric diet (−500 kcal/day) and were randomized to receive recombinant methionyl leptin (n=18, metreleptin, 10 mg/day self-injected s.c.) or placebo (n=6, same volume and time as metreleptin) for 6 months.
Metreleptin administration did not affect weight loss beyond that induced by hypocaloric diet alone (P for interaction = 0.341) but increased the serum concentrations of total leptin by 6–8–fold (P<0.001) and led to the generation of anti-leptin antibodies. Despite free leptin concentration (P for interaction = 0.041) increasing from 9±1 ng/ml at baseline to 43±15 and 36±12 ng/ml at 3 and 6 months, respectively, changes in circulating hormones of the thyroid and insulin-like growth factor axes at 3 and 6 months were not significantly different in the placebo- and metreleptin-treated groups.
Leptin does not likely mediate changes in neuroendocrine function in response to weight loss induced by a mild hypocaloric diet in overweight and obese subjects.
caloric restriction; thyroid function; leptin resistance; leptin tolerance; obesity
Metreleptin has been efficacious in improving metabolic control in patients with lipodystrophy, but its efficacy has not been tested in obese patients with type 2 diabetes.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
We studied the role of leptin in regulating the endocrine adaptation to long-term caloric deprivation and weight loss in obese diabetic subjects over 16 weeks in the context of a double-blinded, placebo–controlled, randomized trial. We then performed detailed interventional and mechanistic signaling studies in humans in vivo, ex vivo, and in vitro.
In obese patients with diabetes, metreleptin administration for 16 weeks did not alter body weight or circulating inflammatory markers but reduced HbA1c marginally (8.01 ± 0.93–7.96 ± 1.12, P = 0.03). Total leptin, leptin-binding protein, and antileptin antibody levels increased, limiting free leptin availability and resulting in circulating free leptin levels of ∼50 ng/mL. Consistent with clinical observations, all metreleptin signaling pathways studied in human adipose tissue and peripheral blood mononuclear cells were saturable at ∼50 ng/mL, with no major differences in timing or magnitude of leptin-activated STAT3 phosphorylation in tissues from male versus female or obese versus lean humans in vivo, ex vivo, or in vitro. We also observed for the first time that endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress in human primary adipocytes inhibits leptin signaling.
In obese patients with diabetes, metreleptin administration did not alter body weight or circulating inflammatory markers but reduced HbA1c marginally. ER stress and the saturable nature of leptin signaling pathways play a key role in the development of leptin tolerance in obese patients with diabetes.
Clinical significance of microscopic peritoneal carcinomatosis remained unclear. The aim of this study was to evaluate the prognostic value of microscopic peritoneal carcinomatosis in gastric cancer.
From 1996 to 2007, 4426 patients underwent gastrectomy for gastric cancer at Fudan University Shanghai Cancer Center. The clinical and pathological data were reviewed to identify patients with microscopic peritoneal carcinomatosis (group 1). The clinicopathological features and prognosis were examined. Additionally, 242 stage-matched gastric cancer patients without microscopic peritoneal carcinomatosis (group 2) and 118 with macroscopic peritoneal carcinomatosis (group 3) were selected as control groups.
Microscopic peritoneal carcinomatosis was found in 121 patients. There were 85 males and 36 females (2.36:1). There was a higher incidence rate of large size tumor (≥5 cm) (P = 0.045), Borrmann IV (P = 0.000), and serosal invasion (P = 0.000) in gastric cancer with microscopic peritoneal carcinomatosis compared with the control group. The 5-year survival rate of gastric cancer with microscopic peritoneal carcinomatosis was 24%, significantly poorer than that of the stage-matched control group but better than that of patients with macroscopic peritoneal carcinomatosis. The independent prognostic factors identified included pathological stage and operative curability.
The presence of microscopic peritoneal carcinomatosis was associated with worse prognosis for gastric cancer, but curative surgery showed potential to improve prognosis.
The clinical importance of preoperative tumor markers remain elusive in gastric cancer. The aim of this study was to evaluate the prognostic value of AFP, CEA, CA19-9, and CA50 in T4a stage gastric cancer.
Two hundred and seventy-three T4a gastric cancer patients who underwent curative D2 gastrectomy between 1996 and 2005 were evaluated. The correlation between tumor markers and clinicopathologic characteristics and prognostic value of preoperative tumor markers were investigated.
Correlation analysis showed that AFP was associated with Borrmann type (P = 0.010); CEA with sex (P = 0.029), tumors site (P = 0.014), and N stage (P = 0.001); CA19-9 with age (P = 0.047), tumor site (P = 0.011), lymphovascular invasion (P = 0.004), and N stage (P = 0.000); CA50 with age (P = 0.017), tumor site (P = 0.004), tumor size (P = 0.014), and N stage (P = 0.000). Multivariate analysis showed that the positivity of preoperative CEA, CA19-9, and CA50 were major independent poor prognostic factors of patients with T4a stage gastric cancer.
Preoperative serum tumor marker might be a candidate for the staging system in addition to conventional factors.
Tumor markers; Gastric cancer; Prognosis
T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) is an aggressive hematological malignancy. The understanding of its gene expression regulation and molecular mechanisms still remains elusive. Started from experimentally verified T-ALL-related miRNAs and genes, we obtained 120 feed-forward loops (FFLs) among T-ALL-related genes, miRNAs and TFs through combining target prediction. Afterwards, a T-ALL miRNA and TF co-regulatory network was constructed, and its significance was tested by statistical methods. Four miRNAs in the miR-17–92 cluster and four important genes (CYLD, HOXA9, BCL2L11 and RUNX1) were found as hubs in the network. Particularly, we found that miR-19 was highly expressed in T-ALL patients and cell lines. Ectopic expression of miR-19 represses CYLD expression, while miR-19 inhibitor treatment induces CYLD protein expression and decreases NF-κB expression in the downstream signaling pathway. Thus, miR-19, CYLD and NF-κB form a regulatory FFL, which provides new clues for sustained activation of NF-κB in T-ALL. Taken together, we provided the first miRNA-TF co-regulatory network in T-ALL and proposed a model to demonstrate the roles of miR-19 and CYLD in the T-cell leukemogenesis. This study may provide potential therapeutic targets for T-ALL and shed light on combining bioinformatics with experiments in the research of complex diseases.
The CCN3/nephroblastoma overexpressed gene belongs to the CCN family of genes that encode secreted proteins involved in a variety of processes including tumorigenesis. Altered expression of CCN3 has been observed in human nephroblastoma and renal cell carcinoma (RCC), suggesting that CCN3 plays a role in kidney tumorigenesis. The aim of the present study was to examine the role of CCN3 in clear cell RCC biology. In particular, we studied the expression of CCN3 in 32 pairs of RCC tissues and corresponding normal kidney tissues using immunohistochemistry. The CCN3 gene was transfected into the 786-O cell line and the behaviors of stably transfected clones were analyzed. Results showed the expression of CCN3 was lower in RCC tissues compared to corresponding normal kidney tissues and the expression of CCN3 was inversely correlated with the Ki67 index. CCN3-expressing clones exhibited significantly inhibited cell proliferation. Furthermore, CCN3-transfected 786-O cells exhibited increased adhesion to extracellular matrix proteins, migration and invasion in Matrigel. Our data indicated that CCN3 plays an anti-proliferative role in clear cell RCC cells and promotes the adhesion, migration and invasion of clear cell RCC cells.
renal cell carcinoma; CCN3; migration; tumorigenicity
Animal studies have demonstrated that dietary supplementation with flaxseed oil inhibits colorectal cancer growth. Recent data indicate that walnuts have strong antiproliferative properties against colon cancer cells in vitro but no previous study has assessed the effects of walnuts in vivo or performed a joint evaluation of flaxseed oil and walnuts. The aim of the present study was to examine the effect of dietary walnuts on colorectal cancer in vivo and to comparatively evaluate their efficacy in relation to flaxseed oil.
HT-29 human colon cancer cells were injected in 6-wk-old female nude mice. After a 1-wk acclimation period, mice (n = 48) were randomized to diets containing ~ 19% of total energy from walnuts, flaxseed oil, or corn oil (control) and were subsequently studied for 25 d.
Tumor growth rate was significantly slower in walnut-fed and flaxseed-fed mice compared with corn oil-fed animals (P < 0.05) by 27% and 43%, respectively. Accordingly, final tumor weight was reduced by 33% and 44%, respectively (P < 0.05 versus control); the differences between walnut and flaxseed diets did not reach significance. We found no differences among groups in metabolic and hormonal profile, serum antioxidant capacity, or inflammation (P > 0.05). However, walnuts and flaxseed oil significantly reduced serum expression levels of angiogenesis factors, including vascular endothelial growth factor (by 30% and 80%, respectively), and approximately doubled total necrotic areas despite smaller tumor sizes (P < 0.05 versus control). Dietary walnuts significantly decreased angiogenesis (CD34 staining; P = 0.017 versus control), whereas this effect did not reach significance in the flaxseed oil group (P = 0.454 versus control).
We conclude that walnuts in the diet inhibit colorectal cancer growth by suppressing angiogenesis. Further studies are needed to confirm our findings in humans and explore underlying mechanisms.
Nuts; Linseed; Colon cancer; Xenograft; VEGF
Background and Objective
The prognosis varied among the patients with the same stage, therefore there was a need for new prognostic and predictive factors. The aim of this study was to evaluate the relationship of apoptosis-related biological markers such as p53, bcl-2, bax, and c-myc, and clinicopathological features and their prognostic value.
From 1996 to 2007, 4426 patients had undergone curative D2 gastrectomy for gastric cancer at Fudan University Shanghai Cancer Center. Among 501 patients, the expression levels of p53, bcl-2, bax, and c-myc were examined by immunohistochemistry. The prognostic value of biological markers and the correlation between biological markers and other clinicopathological factors were investigated.
There were 339 males and 162 females with a mean age of 57. The percentages of positive expression of p53, bcl-2, bax, and c-myc were 65%, 22%, 43%, and 58%, respectively. There was a strong correlation between p53, bax, and c-myc expression (P = 0.00). There was significant association between bcl-2, and bax expression (P<0.05). p53 expression correlated with histological grade (P = 0.01); bcl-2 expression with pathological stage (P = 0.00); bax expression with male (P = 0.02), histological grade (P = 0.01), Borrmann type (P = 0.01), tumor location (P = 0.00), lymph node metastasis (P = 0.03), and pathological stage (P = 0.03); c-myc expression with Borrmann type (P = 0.00). bcl-2 expression was related with good survival in univariate analysis (P = 0.01). Multivariate analysis showed that bcl-2 expression and pathological stage were defined as independent prognostic factors. There were significant differences of overall 5-year survival rates according to bcl-2 expression or not in stage IIB (P = 0.03).
The expression of bcl-2 was an independent prognostic factor for patients with gastric cancer; it might be a candidate for the gastric cancer staging system.
Obesity and diabetes have been associated with increased consumption of highly processed foods, and reduced consumption of whole grains and nuts. It has been proposed, mainly on the basis of observational studies, that nuts may provide superior satiation, may lead to reduced calorie consumption, and may decrease the risk of type 2 diabetes; but evidence from randomized, interventional studies is lacking. Twenty men and women with the metabolic syndrome participated in a randomized, double blind, cross-over study of walnut consumption. Subjects had two four-day admissions to the clinical research center where they were fed an iso-caloric diet. In addition, they consumed shakes for breakfast containing either walnuts or placebo (shakes were standardized for calories, carbohydrate, and fat content). Appetite, insulin resistance, and metabolic parameters were measured. We found an increased level of satiety (overall p-value 0.0079) and sense of fullness (p=0.05) in pre-lunch questionnaires following the walnut breakfast as compared to the placebo breakfast, with the walnut effect achieving significance on day 3 and 4 (p=0.02 and p=0.03). We did not find any change in resting energy expenditure, hormones known to mediate satiety, or insulin resistance when comparing the walnut versus placebo diet. Walnut consumption over 4 days increased satiety by day 3. Long term studies are needed to confirm the physiologic role of walnuts, the duration of time needed for these effects to occur, and to elucidate the underlying mechanisms.
Walnuts; Diet; Metabolic Syndrome
The development of effective microbicides for the prevention of HIV-1 sexual transmission represents a primary goal for the control of AIDS epidemics worldwide. A promising strategy is the use of bacteria belonging to the vaginal microbiota as live microbicides for the topical production of HIV-1 inhibitors. We have engineered a human vaginal isolate of Lactobacillus jensenii to secrete the anti-HIV-1 chemokine RANTES, as well as C1C5 RANTES, a mutated analogue that acts as a CCR5 antagonist and therefore is devoid of proinflammatory activity. Full-length wild-type RANTES and C1C5 RANTES secreted by L. jensenii were purified to homogeneity and shown to adopt a correctly folded conformation. Both RANTES variants were shown to inhibit HIV-1 infection in CD4+ T cells and macrophages, displaying strong activity against HIV-1 isolates of different genetic subtypes. This work provides proof of principle for the use of L. jensenii-produced C1C5 RANTES to block HIV-1 infection of CD4+ T cells and macrophages, setting the basis for the development of a live anti-HIV-1 microbicide targeting CCR5 in an antagonistic manner.