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1.  High-yield novel leech hyaluronidase to expedite the preparation of specific hyaluronan oligomers 
Scientific Reports  2014;4:4471.
Hyaluronidases (HAases), particularly leech HAases, have attracted intense attention due to their broad applications in medical treatments and great potential for the enzymatic production of hyaluronan oligosaccharides. However, little is known about this third interesting family of HAases. Here, we applied the random amplification of cDNA ends polymerase chain reaction (RACE-PCR) approach to identify the first leech HAase-encoding gene. By combining protein engineering and high-density culture, we achieved high-level production (8.42 × 105 U ml−1) in the yeast Pichia pastoris secretory expression system. Compared with the commercial bovine testicular HAase, the recombinant leech HAase exhibited superior enzymatic properties. Furthermore, analysis of the hydrolytic process suggested that this novel enzyme adopts a nonprocessive endolytic mode, yielding a narrow-spectrum of specific HA oligosaccharides with different incubation times. Large-scale production of this novel leech HAase will not only greatly promote medical applications but also facilitate the enzymatic production of specific HA oligosaccharides.
doi:10.1038/srep04471
PMCID: PMC3966032  PMID: 24667183
2.  Rational Design of a Novel Propeptide for Improving Active Production of Streptomyces griseus Trypsin in Pichia pastoris 
Applied and Environmental Microbiology  2013;79(12):3851-3855.
Applying in silico simulations and in vitro experiments, the amino acid proline was proved to have a profound influence on Streptomyces griseus trypsinogen, and the hydrogen bond between H57 and D102 was found to be crucial for trypsin activity. By introducing an artificial propeptide, IVEF, the titer of trypsin was increased 6.71-fold.
doi:10.1128/AEM.00376-13
PMCID: PMC3675915  PMID: 23563937
3.  4,9,12,15-Tetra­oxa-3,5,8,10,14,16-hexa­aza­tetra­cyclo­[11.3.0.02,6.07,11]hexa­deca-1(16),2,5,7,10,13-hexaen-3-ium-3-olate monohydrate 
The organic mol­ecule in the title monohydrate, C6N6O5·H2O, presents an almost planar configuration, the greatest deviation from the least-squares plane through the atoms being 0.061 (1) Å for the O atom within the seven-membered ring. Each water H atom is bifurcated, one forming two O—H⋯N hydrogen bonds and the other forming O—H⋯N,O hydrogen bonds. The result of the hydrogen bonding is the formation of supra­molecular layers with a zigzag topology that stack along [001].
doi:10.1107/S160053681200774X
PMCID: PMC3297919  PMID: 22412722
4.  Resemblance of Symptoms for Major Depression Assessed at Interview versus from Hospital Record Review 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(1):e28734.
Background
Diagnostic information for psychiatric research often depends on both clinical interviews and medical records. Although discrepancies between these two sources are well known, there have been few studies into the degree and origins of inconsistencies.
Principal findings
We compared data from structured interviews and medical records on 1,970 Han Chinese women with recurrent DSM-IV major depression (MD). Correlations were high for age at onset of MD (0.93) and number of episodes (0.70), intermediate for family history (+0.62) and duration of longest episode (+0.43) and variable but generally more modest for individual depressive symptoms (mean kappa = 0.32). Four factors were identified for twelve symptoms from medical records and the same four factors emerged from analysis of structured interviews. Factor congruencies were high but the correlation of factors between interviews and records were modest (i.e. +0.2 to +0.4).
Conclusions
Structured interviews and medical records are highly concordant for age of onset, and the number and length of episodes, but agree more modestly for individual symptoms and symptom factors. The modesty of these correlations probably arises from multiple factors including i) inconsistency in the definition of the worst episode, ii) inaccuracies in self-report and iii) difficulties in coding medical records where symptoms were recorded solely for clinical purposes.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0028734
PMCID: PMC3256142  PMID: 22247760
5.  Complete PHB mobilization in Escherichia coli enhances the stress tolerance: a potential biotechnological application 
Background
Poly-β-hydroxybutyrate (PHB) mobilization in bacteria has been proposed as a mechanism that can benefit their host for survival under stress conditions. Here we reported for the first time that a stress-induced system enabled E. coli, a non-PHB producer, to mobilize PHB in vivo by mimicking natural PHB accumulation bacteria.
Results
The successful expression of PHB biosynthesis and PHB depolymerase genes in E. coli was confirmed by PHB production and 3-hydroxybutyrate secretion. Starvation experiment demonstrated that the complete PHB mobilization system in E. coli served as an intracellular energy and carbon storage system, which increased the survival rate of the host when carbon resources were limited. Stress tolerance experiment indicated that E. coli strains with PHB production and mobilization system exhibited an enhanced stress resistance capability.
Conclusion
This engineered E. coli with PHB mobilization has a potential biotechnological application as immobilized cell factories for biocatalysis and biotransformation.
doi:10.1186/1475-2859-8-47
PMCID: PMC2746179  PMID: 19719845
6.  Rice Dwarf Phytoreovirus Segment S6-Encoded Nonstructural Protein Has a Cell-to-Cell Movement Function 
Journal of Virology  2004;78(10):5382-5389.
Rice dwarf virus (RDV) is a member of the genus Phytoreovirus, which is composed of viruses with segmented double-stranded RNA genomes. Proteins that support the intercellular movement of these viruses in the host have not been identified. Microprojectile bombardment was used to determine which open reading frames (ORFs) support intercellular movement of a heterologous virus. A plasmid containing an infectious clone of Potato virus X (PVX) defective in cell-to-cell movement and expressing either β-glucuronidase or green fluorescent protein (GFP) was used for cobombardment with plasmids containing ORFs from RDV gene segments S1 through S12 onto leaves of Nicotiana benthamiana. Cell-to-cell movement of the movement-defective PVX was restored by cobombardment with a plasmid containing S6. In the absence of S6, no other gene segment supported movement. Identical results were obtained with Nicotiana tabacum, a host that allows fewer viruses to infect and spread within its tissue. S6 supported the cell-to-cell movement of the movement-defective PVX in sink and source leaves of N. benthamiana. A mutant S6 lacking the translation start codon did not complement the cell-to-cell movement of the movement-defective PVX. An S6 protein product (Pns6)-enhanced GFP fusion was observed near or within cell walls of epidermal cells from N. tabacum. By immunocytochemistry, unfused Pns6 was localized to plasmodesmata in rice leaves infected with RDV. S6 thus encodes a protein with characteristics identical to those of other viral proteins required for the cell-to-cell movement of their genome and therefore is likely required for the cell-to-cell movement of RDV.
doi:10.1128/JVI.78.10.5382-5389.2004
PMCID: PMC400330  PMID: 15113917

Results 1-6 (6)