The degree of differentiation in human cancers generally reflects the degree of malignancy, with the most undifferentiated cancer being also the highest grade and the most aggressive. High-grade serous ovarian carcinomas (HGSOC) are poorly differentiated and fast-growing malignancies. The molecular mechanisms underlying the poor differentiation of HGSOC has not been completely characterized. Evidence suggests that miRNA, miR are dysregulated in HGSOC. Therefore, we focused on those miRNAs that are relevant to tumor differentiation. Expression profiling of miRNAs in HGSOC, indicated miR-106a and its family members were significantly upregulated. Upregulation of miR-106a was further validated by real-time reverse transcriptase PCR (qRT-PCR) and miRNA in situ hybridization in a large cohort of HGSOC specimens. Overexpression of miR-106a in benign and malignant ovarian cells significantly increased the cellular proliferation rate and expanded the side-population fraction. In particular, SKOV3 cells with miR-106a overexpression had significantly higher tumor initial/stem cell population (CD24- and CD133-positive cells) than control SKOV3 cells. Among many miR-106a predicated target genes, p130 (RBL2), an retinoblastoma (Rb) tumor suppressor family member, was not only confirmed as a specific target of miR-106a but also related to tumor growth and differentiation. The importance of mir-106a and RBL2 was further demonstrated in vivo, in which, SKOV3 cells overexpressing miR-106a formed poorly differentiated carcinomas and had reduced RBL2 levels. To our knowledge, this is the first study of miR-106a mediating proliferation and tumor differentiation in HGSOC.
The current study suggests that the RB tumor suppressor pathway is a critical regulator of growth and differentiation in HGSOC.
A high-throughput method was developed and applied to screen for the active antihepatic steatosis components within Coptidis Rhizoma Alkaloids Extract (CAE). This method was a combination of two previously described assays: HepG2 cell extraction with HPLC analysis and a free fatty acid-induced (FFA) hepatic steatosis HepG2 cell assay. Two alkaloids within CAE, berberine and coptisine, were identified by HepG2 cell extraction with HPLC analysis as high affinity components for HepG2. These alkaloids were also determined to be active and potent compounds capable of lowering triglyceride (TG) accumulation in the FFA-induced hepatic steatosis HepG2 cell assay. This remarkable inhibition of TG accumulation (P < 0.01) by berberine and coptisine occurred at concentrations of 0.2 μg/mL and 5.0 μg/mL, respectively. At these concentrations, the effect seen was similar to that of a CAE at 100.0 μg/mL. Another five alkaloids within CAE, palmatine, epiberberine, jateorhizine, columbamine, and magnoline, were found to have a lower affinity for cellular components from HepG2 cells and a lower inhibition of TG accumulation. The finding of two potent and active compounds within CAE indicates that the screening method we developed is a feasible, rapid, and useful tool for studying traditional Chinese medicines (TCMs) in treating hepatic steatosis.
Each element in the conformal array has a different pattern, which leads to the performance deterioration of the conventional high resolution direction-of-arrival (DOA) algorithms. In this paper, a joint frequency and two-dimension DOA (2D-DOA) estimation algorithm for conformal array are proposed. The delay correlation function is used to suppress noise. Both spatial and time sampling are utilized to construct the spatial-time matrix. The frequency and 2D-DOA estimation are accomplished based on parallel factor (PARAFAC) analysis without spectral peak searching and parameter pairing. The proposed algorithm needs only four guiding elements with precise positions to estimate frequency and 2D-DOA. Other instrumental elements can be arranged flexibly on the surface of the carrier. Simulation results demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed algorithm.
Neuroblastoma (NB) is the most common extracranial solid tumor in childhood. The present treatment including surgery, chemotherapy and radiation, which have only 40% long-term cure rates, and usually cause tumor recurrence. Thus, looking for new effective and less toxic therapies has important significance. XAV939 is a small molecule inhibitor of tankyrase 1(TNKS1). The objective of this study is to investigate the effect of XAV939 on the proliferation and apoptosis of NB cell lines, and the related mechanism.
In the present study, we used both XAV939 treatment and RNAi method to demonstrate that TNKS1 inhibition may be a potential mechanism to cure NB. MTT method was used for determining the cell viability and the appropriate concerntration for follow-up assays. The colony formation assay, Annexin V staining and cell cycle analysis were used for detecting colony forming ability, cell apoptosis and the percentage of different cell cycle. The Western blot was used for detecting the expression of key proteins of Wnt/ beta-catenin (Wnt/β-catenin) signaling pathway.
The results showed that TNKS1 inhibition decreased the viability of SH-SY5Y, SK-N-SH and IMR-32 cells, induced apoptosis in SH-SY5Y as well as SK-N-SH cells, and led to the accumulation of NB cells in the S and G2/M phase of the cell cycle. Moreover, we demonstrated TNKS1 inhibition may in part blocked Wnt/β-catenin signaling and reduced the expression of anti-apoptosis protein. Finally, we also demonstrated that TNKS1 inhibition decreased colony formation in vitro.
These findings suggested that TNKS1 may be a potential molecule target for the treatment of NB.
Neuroblastoma; Tankyrase 1; Wnt signaling; XAV939
Objective. To observe the relationship between changes in renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) activity and blood plasma glucose after administration of hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) for one year in patients with hypertension. Methods. 108 hypertensive patients were given 12.5 mg HCTZ per day for one year. RAAS activity, plasma glucose levels, and other biochemical parameters, as well as plasma oxidized low density lipoprotein (oxLDL) levels, were measured and analyzed at baseline, six weeks, and one year after treatment. Results. After one year of treatment, the reduction in plasma glucose observed between the elevated plasma renin activity (PRA) group (−0.26 ± 0.26 mmol/L) and the nonelevated PRA group (−1.36 ± 0.23 mmol/L) was statistically significant (P < 0.05). The decrease of plasma glucose in the elevated Ang II group (−0.17 ± 0.18 mmol/L) compared to the nonelevated Ang II group (−1.07 ± 0.21 mmol/L) was statistically significant (P < 0.05). The proportion of patients with elevated plasma glucose in the elevated Ang II group (40.5%) was significantly higher than those in the nonelevated Ang II group (16.3%) (P < 0.05). The relative oxLDL level was not affected by the treatment. Conclusions. Changes in RAAS activity were correlated with changes in plasma glucose levels after one year of HCTZ therapy.
To characterize downstream effectors of p300 acetyltransferase in the myocardium.
Acetyltransferase p300 is a central driver of the hypertrophic response to increased workload, but its biological targets and downstream effectors are incompletely known.
Methods and Results
Mice expressing a myocyte-restricted transgene encoding acetyltransferase p300, previously shown to develop spontaneous hypertrophy, were observed to undergo robust compensatory blood vessel growth together with increased angiogenic gene expression. Chromatin immunoprecipitation demonstrated binding of p300 to the enhancers of the angiogenic regulators Angpt1 and Egln3. Interestingly, p300 overexpression in vivo was also associated with relative upregulation of several members of the anti-angiogenic miR-17∼92 cluster in vivo. Confirming this finding, both miR-17-3p and miR-20a were upregulated in neonatal rat ventricular myocytes following adenoviral transduction of p300. Relative expression of most members of the 17∼92 cluster was similar in all 4 cardiac chambers and in other organs, however, significant downregulation of miR-17-3p and miR-20a occurred between 1 and 8 months of age in both wt and tg mice. The decline in expression of these microRNAs was associated with increased expression of VEGFA, a validated miR-20a target. In addition, miR-20a was demonstrated to directly repress p300 expression through a consensus binding site in the p300 3′UTR. In vivo transduction of p300 resulted in repression both of p300 and of p300-induced angiogenic transcripts.
p300 drives an angiogenic transcription program during hypertrophy that is fine-tuned in part through direct repression of p300 by miR-20a.
Chronic inflammation has been regarded as an important mechanism in carcinogenesis. Inflammation-associated genetic variants have been highly associated with cancer risk. Polymorphisms in the gene cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), a pro-inflammation factor, have been suggested to alter the risk of multiple tumors, but the findings of various studies are not consistent.
A literature search through February 2013 was performed using PubMed, EMBASE, and CNKI databases. We used odds ratios (ORs) with confidence intervals (CIs) of 95% to assess the strength of the association between the COX-2-765G>C polymorphism and cancer risk in a random-effect model. We also assessed heterogeneity and publication bias.
In total, 65 articles with 29,487 cancer cases and 39,212 non-cancer controls were included in this meta-analysis. The pooled OR (95% CIs) in the co-dominant model (GC vs. GG) was 1.11 (1.02–1.22), and in the dominant model ((CC+GC) vs. GG), the pooled OR was 1.12 (1.02–1.23). In the subgroup analysis, stratified by cancer type and race, significant associations were found between the-765 C allele and higher risk for gastric cancer, leukemia, pancreatic cancer, and cancer in the Asian population.
In summary, the COX-2-765 C allele was related to increased cancer susceptibility, especially gastric cancer and cancer in the Asian population.
In recent years, as the development of next-generation sequencing technology, a growing number of genes have been reported as being horizontally transferred from prokaryotes to eukaryotes, most of them involving arthropods. As a member of the phylum Arthropoda, the Pacific white shrimp Litopenaeus vannamei has to adapt to the complex water environments with various symbiotic or parasitic microorganisms, which provide a platform for horizontal gene transfer (HGT).
In this study, we analyzed the genome-wide HGT events in L. vannamei. Through homology search and phylogenetic analysis, followed by experimental PCR confirmation, 14 genes with HGT event were identified: 12 of them were transferred from bacteria and two from fungi. Structure analysis of these genes showed that the introns of the two fungi-originated genes were substituted by shrimp DNA fragment, two genes transferred from bacteria had shrimp specific introns inserted in them. Furthermore, around other three bacteria-originated genes, there were three large DNA segments inserted into the shrimp genome. One segment was a transposon that fully transferred, and the other two segments contained only coding regions of bacteria. Functional prediction of these 14 genes showed that 6 of them might be related to energy metabolism, and 4 others related to defense of the organism.
HGT events from bacteria or fungi were happened in the genome of L. vannamei, and these horizontally transferred genes can be transcribed in shrimp. This is the first time to report the existence of horizontally transferred genes in shrimp. Importantly, most of these genes are exposed to a negative selection pressure and appeared to be functional.
Horizontal gene transfer; Litopenaeus vannamei; Shrimp; Bacteria; Fungi
A Pichia pastoris (P. pastoris) cell surface display system of Bombyx mori acetylcholinesterase (BmAChE) was constructed and its bioactivity was studied. The modified Bombyx mori acetylcholinesterase gene (bmace) was fused with the anchor protein (AGα1) from Saccharomyces cerevisiae and transformed into P. pastoris strain GS115. The recombinant strain harboring the fusion gene bmace-AGα1 was induced to display BmAChE on the P. pastoris cell surface. Fluorescence microscopy and flow cytometry assays revealed that the BmAChE was successfully displayed on the cell surface of P. pastoris GS115. The enzyme activity of the displayed BmAChE was detected by the Ellman method at 787.7 U/g (wet cell weight). In addition, bioactivity of the displayed BmAChE was verified by inhibition tests conducted with eserine, and with carbamate and organophosphorus pesticides. The displayed BmAChE had an IC50 of 4.17×10−8 M and was highly sensitive to eserine and five carbamate pesticides, as well as seven organophosphorus pesticides. Results suggest that the displayed BmAChE had good bioactivity.
Endothelial activation, which is characterized by upregulation of cellular adhesion molecules and pro-inflammatory chemokines and cytokines, and consequent monocyte recruitment to the arterial intima are etiologic factors in atherosclerosis. Redox-active transition metal ions, such as copper and iron, may play an important role in endothelial activation by stimulating redox-sensitive cell signaling pathways. We have shown previously that copper chelation by tetrathiomolybdate (TTM) inhibits LPS-induced acute inflammatory responses in vivo. Here, we investigated whether TTM can inhibit atherosclerotic lesion development in apolipoprotein E-deficient (apoE−/−) mice. We found that 10-week treatment of apoE−/− mice with TTM (33–66 ppm in the diet) reduced serum levels of the copper-containing protein, ceruloplasmin, by 47%, and serum iron by 26%. Tissue levels of “bioavailable” copper, assessed by the copper-to-molybdenum ratio, decreased by 80% in aorta and heart, whereas iron levels of these tissues were not affected by TTM treatment. Furthermore, TTM significantly attenuated atherosclerotic lesion development in whole aorta by 25% and descending aorta by 45% compared to non-TTM treated apoE−/− mice. This anti-atherogenic effect of TTM was accompanied by several anti-inflammatory effects, i.e., significantly decreased serum levels of soluble vascular cell and intercellular adhesion molecules (VCAM-1 and ICAM-1); reduced aortic gene expression of VCAM-1, ICAM-1, monocyte chemotactic protein-1, and pro-inflammatory cytokines; and significantly less aortic accumulation of M1 type macrophages. In contrast, serum levels of oxidized LDL were not reduced by TTM. These data indicate that TTM inhibits atherosclerosis in apoE−/− mice by reducing bioavailable copper and vascular inflammation, not by altering iron homeostasis or reducing oxidative stress.
tetrathiomolybdate; endothelial activation; copper chelation; atherosclerosis; vascular inflammation
Krukenberg tumor originated from stomach in female patients is common in clinical practice, but it is still uncertain whether surgical resection of ovarian metastases could improve the outcome. Some studies suggested that a certain group of patients could benefit from the resection of ovarian metastases. However, conclusions were different between studies and there was no data to illustrate if certain molecular markers were associated with patients’ survival. In this study, we analyzed the effects of resection of ovarian metastases, and investigated prognostic factors in 133 patients with ovarian metastases originated from stomach. Furthermore, we examined the expression of some cancer stem cells (CSCs) markers or related molecules in 64 ovarian metastases specimens and analyzed the correlation between these molecules and patients’ survival. We found that the median overall survival (mOS) of all 133 patients was 16 months, and “gastrectomy” and “without ascites” were two independent prognostic factors associated with longer survival. The mOS of the patients with gastrectomy was longer than that of patients had not undergone gastrectomy (19 vs. 9 months, p = 0.048). Patients without ascites survived longer than those with ascites (mOS: 21 vs. 13 months, p = 0.008). We also found that Sox2, CD44 or CD133 positive expression in ovarian metastases were risk factors correlated with poor survival, and Sox2 expression was an independent prognostic indicator. These results suggested that ovarian metastasectomy might help to prolong the survivor of some patients with Krukenberg tumor originated from stomach. Patients without ascites, and with resected or resectable primary gastric cancer lesion could get benefit from and be potential candidate for surgical treatment. The expression of Sox2 might serve as a prognostic indicator for predicting patients’ survival and be helpful for selecting patients in future.
A large number of studies have been conducted to explore the mechanism of Back-Shu and Front-Mu points. While several lines of evidence addressed the acupuncture information of Shu acupoints and Mu acupoints gathering in the spinal cord, whether the convergence is extended to the high centre still remains unclear. The study selected gastric Mu points (RN12) and gastric Shu points (BL21) regulating gastric motility and its central neural mechanisms as the breakthrough point, using the technique of immunochemistry, nuclei lesion, electrophysiology, and nerve transection. Here, we report that gastric motility regulation of gastric Shu and Mu acupoints and their synergistic effect and the signals induced by electroacupuncture (EA) stimulation of acupoints RN12 and RN12 gather in the dorsal vagal complex (DVC), increasing the levels of gastrointestinal hormones in the DVC to regulate gastric motility through the vagus. In sum, our data demonstrate an important role of DVC and vagus in the regulation of gastric motility by EA at gastric Shu and Mu points.
Our objective was to determine the secular trend in prevalence of type 2 diabetes in Shanghai, China.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
Two consecutive population-based surveys for type 2 diabetes were conducted in randomly selected adults aged 35–74 years in Shanghai in 2002–2003 (n = 12,329) and in 2009 (n = 7,423). Diagnosed type 2 diabetes was determined based on self-report, whereas those undiagnosed were identified by measured fasting and postload glucose according to 2009 American Diabetes Association criteria.
Age-standardized prevalence of diagnosed and undiagnosed type 2 diabetes increased from 5.1 and 4.6% in 2002–2003 to 7.4 and 5.2% in 2009. The prevalence of type 2 diabetes increased with age and was higher among men and in urban residents in both surveys (P < 0.001). Between the two surveys, the increase in the prevalence was more evident in the rural population (P < 0.001) and appeared more rapid in younger birth cohorts (P < 0.05).
Our results suggest that Shanghai has experienced an increasing burden of type 2 diabetes.
Cancer stem cells are regarded as the cause of tumour formation and recurrence in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC). However, ideal surface markers for stem cells in NPC remain unidentified. In the present study, we investigated the expression of CD133, Nanog and Sox2 in the nasopharyngeal carcinoma cell line CNE2 and primarily cultured NPC cells using immunofluorescence or flow cytometry. A cell population with a CD133+ phenotype was enriched using magnetic-activated cell sorting technology. We demonstrated that CD133+ cells exhibited a strong potential for self-renewal, proliferation and differentiation and a greater potential for in vivo tumour formation in nude mice compared to CD133− cells, although the percentage of CD133+ cells was small. However, the specific marker antigens Nanog and Sox2 were simultaneously expressed in normal cancer stem cells. Our results showed that CD133 can serve as a specific surface marker for nasopharyngeal cancer stem cells.
nasopharyngeal carcinoma; cancer stem cells; CD133
Ginkgo biloba extract (GBE) EGb761 is widely used for cardiovascular prevention. Here, we investigated the effects of GBE on atherosclerotic lesion development in rabbits with a high-fat diet.
Material and methods
Forty New Zealand white male rabbits were randomly divided into four groups. The first two were the normal diet group (C) and the high-fat group (HF). The remaining two groups were those who received a high cholesterol diet supplemented with either the standard drug (simvastatin 2 mg/kg/day) or GBE (3 mg/kg/day). At 12 weeks, histopathological and chemical analyses were performed.
Plasma lipid measurement showed that GBE inhibited high-fat diet-induced increase of serum triglyceride (TG), total cholesterol (TC), and low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) by 59.1% (0.9 ±0.2 4 mmol/l vs. 2.2 ±0.4 mmol/l), 18.2% (31.1 ±1.4 mmol/l vs. 38.0 ±0.4 mmol/l) and 15% (28.9 ±1.3 mmol/l vs. 34.0±1.0 mmol/l), respectively, at 12 weeks (p < 0.01). The en face Sudan IV-positive lesion area of the aorta in the GBE group (51.7 ±3.1%) was significantly lower compared with that in the HF group (88.2 ±2.2%; p < 0.01). The mean atherosclerotic lesion area of the GBE group was reduced by 53.2% compared with the HF group (p < 0.01). Immunohistochemistry and western blot analysis showed that GBE markedly suppressed high-fat diet-induced upregulation of connexin 43 (Cx43) in rabbits (p < 0.01).
Thus, our study revealed that GBE prevented atherosclerosis progress through modulating plasma lipid, suppressing atherosclerotic lesion development, and attenuating the expression of Cx43 protein.
atherosclerosis; Ginkgo biloba extract; connexin 43; plasma lipid; high-fat diet
Schistosomiasis transmission is typically focal. Understanding spatial variations of Schistosoma infections and their associated factors is important to help to invent site-specific intervention strategies.
A five-year longitudinal study was carried out prospectively in 12 natural villages, Guichi district of Anhui province. A GIS-based spatial analysis was conducted to identify geographic distribution patterns of schistosomiasis infections at the household scale.
The results of the spatial autocorrelation analysis for 2005 showed that there were significant spatial clusters of human infections at the household level, and these results were in agreement with that of the spatial scan statistic. As prevalence of infections in humans decreased over the course of control, the spatial distribution of these infections became less heterogeneous.
The findings imply that it may be necessary to re-assess risk factors of S. japonicum transmission over the course of control and to adjust accordingly control measures in the communities.
Schistosomiasis; Intervention; Geographical information system; Spatial-temporal distribution; Spatial autocorrelation analysis; Spatial scan statistic; Schistosoma japonicum
Anopiophora glabripennis (Motsch.) (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) is a destructive woodborer, attacking many species of deciduous hardwood trees. Apriona swainsoni (Hope) (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) is a woodborer of Sophora japonica L. (Angiospermae: Fabaceae). Dastarcus helophoroides (Fairmaire) (Coleoptera: Bothrideridae) is an important natural enemy of both Cerambycid species in China. Kairomones for two populations of D. helophoroides that parasitize A. glabripennis and A. swainsoni respectively were studied. Based on identification and quantification of volatiles from larval frass produced by A. glabripennis and A. swainsoni, monoterpenes were selected to test their kairomonal activity to both populations of D. helophoroides adults using a Y-tube olfactometer. The results indicated that (S)-(-)-limonene served as a kairomone for the population of D. helophoroides parasitized A. glabripennis. α-pinene, (IR)-(+)-αpinene and (+)-β-pinene were attractive to the population of D. helophoroides parasitized A. swainsoni. The results provide information about the co-evolution of D. helophoroides, its host, and host-food trees.
kairomone; olfactory response; parasitoid; tritrophic interactions; woodborer
DJ-1 can induce the tumor cell proliferation and invasion via down-regulating PTEN in many malignant tumors, and correlated to prognostic significance. However, the tumorigenesis role and clinical significance of DJ-1 in supraglottic squamous cell carcinoma (SSCC) is unclear. We aimed to evaluate the DJ-1 the relationship between DJ-1 and clinicopathological data including patient survival.
The expression of DJ-1 and PTEN in SSCCs (52) and adjacent non-cancerous tissues (42) was assessed by immunohistochemistry (IHC), and the relationship between DJ-1 and clinicopathological data was analyzed.
DJ-1 was detected mainly in SSCCs (88.5%) and less frequently in adjacent non-cancerous tissues (21.0%). PTEN expression was detected in 46.2% of SSCCs and in 90.5% of adjacent non-cancerous tissues. DJ-1 expression was linked to nodal status (P = 0.009), a highly significant association of DJ-1 expression with shortened patient overall survival (5-year survival rate 88.0% versus 53.9%; P = 0.007; log rank test) was demonstrated.
Our data suggested that DJ-1 over-expression was linked to nodal status, and might be an independent prognostic marker for patients with SSCC.
DJ-1; PTEN; Tumorigenesis; Supraglottic squamous cell carcinoma; Overall survival
The notion that dietary flavonoids exert beneficial health effects in humans is often based on in vitro studies using the glycoside or aglycone forms of these flavonoids. However, flavonoids are extensively metabolized in humans, resulting in formation of glucuronide, methyl and sulphate derivatives, which may have different properties than their parent compounds. The goal of this study was to investigate whether different chemical modifications of the same flavonoid molecule affect its biological and antioxidant activities. Hence, we studied the anti-inflammatory effects of several major human metabolites of quercetin and (−)-epigallocatechin-3-O-gallate (EGCG) by assessing their inhibitory effects on tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα)-induced protein expression of cellular adhesion molecules in human aortic endothelial cells (HAEC). HAEC were incubated with 1–30 μM quercetin, 3′- or 4′-O-methyl-quercetin, quercetin-3-O-glucuronide and quercetin-3′-sulphate; or 20–100 μM EGCG, 4″-O-methyl-EGCG and 4′,4″-di-O-methyl-EGCG, prior to co-incubation with 100 U/ml of TNFα. 3′-O-Methyl-quercetin, 4′-O-methyl-quercetin and their parent aglycone compound, quercetin, all effectively inhibited expression of intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) with IC50 values (concentration required for 50% inhibition) of 8.0, 5.0 and 4.4 μM, respectively; E-selectin expression was suppressed to a somewhat lesser but still significant degree by all three compounds, whereas vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1) was not affected. In contrast, quercetin-3-O-glucuronide (20–100 μM), quercetin-3′-O-sulphate (10–30 μM) and phenolic acid metabolites of quercetin (20–100 μM) did not inhibit adhesion molecule expression. 4′,4″-di-O-methyl-EGCG selectively inhibited ICAM-1 expression with an IC50 value of 94 μM, whereas EGCG (20–60 μM) and 4″-O-methyl-EGCG (20–100 μM) had no effect. The inhibitory effects of 3′-O-methyl-quercetin and 4′,4″-di-O-methyl-EGCG on adhesion molecule expression were not related to either inhibition of NF-κB activation or their antioxidant reducing capacity. Our data indicate that flavonoid metabolites have different biological and antioxidant properties than their parent compounds, and suggest that data from in vitro studies using non-metabolites of flavonoids are of limited relevance in vivo.
In 2004 an aggressive plan was instituted aiming to achieve nationwide transmission control of schistosomiasis by 2015. Here, we report a longitudinal study on the control of schistosomiasis in Anhui province, China. Using a mathematical model, we compared the effects of different control strategies implemented in the study area. During the 5-year study period, a 60.8% reduction in human prevalence was observed from 2005 (7.95%) to 2009 (3.1%), and snail infection decreased from 0.063% in 2005 to zero in 2009. Results of the model agree well with the first 3-year field observations and suggest continuous decrease in human infections in the last 2 years, whereas the last 2-year field observations indicated that human infections appeared to be stable even with continuous control. Our findings showed that the integrated control strategy was effective, and we speculated that other factors besides bovines might contribute to the local transmission of the disease.
A comprehensive understanding of gene function and the production of site-specific genetically modified mutants are two major goals of genetic engineering in the post-genomic era. Although site-specific recombination systems have been powerful tools for genome manipulation of many organisms, they have not yet been established for use in the manipulation of the silkworm Bombyx mori genome. In this study, we achieved site-specific excision of a target gene at predefined chromosomal sites in the silkworm using a FLP/FRT site-specific recombination system. We first constructed two stable transgenic target silkworm strains that both contain a single copy of the transgene construct comprising a target gene expression cassette flanked by FRT sites. Using pre-blastoderm microinjection of a FLP recombinase helper expression vector, 32 G3 site-specific recombinant transgenic individuals were isolated from five of 143 broods. The average frequency of FLP recombinase-mediated site-specific excision in the two target strains genome was approximately 3.5%. This study shows that it is feasible to achieve site-specific recombination in silkworms using the FLP/FRT system. We conclude that the FLP/FRT system is a useful tool for genome manipulation in the silkworm. Furthermore, this is the first reported use of the FLP/FRT system for the genetic manipulation of a lepidopteran genome and thus provides a useful reference for the establishment of genome manipulation technologies in other lepidopteran species.
Activated inhibitor of nuclear factor-κB kinase β (IKKβ) is necessary and sufficient for denervated skeletal muscle atrophy. Although several studies have shown that Mg2+/Mn2+-dependent protein phosphatase 1B (PPM1B) inactivated IKKβ, few studies have investigated the role of PPM1B in denervated skeletal muscle. In this study, we aim to explore the expression and significance of PPM1B and phosphorylated IKKβ (P-IKKβ) during atrophy of the denervated gastrocnemius. Thirty young adult female Wistar rats were subjected to right sciatic nerve transection and were sacrificed at 0 (control), 2, 7, 14, and 28 days after denervation surgery. The gastrocnemius was removed from both the denervated and the contralateral limb. The muscle wet weight ratio was calculated as the ratio of the wet weight of the denervated gastrocnemius to that of the contralateral gastrocnemius. RT-PCR and Western blot analysis showed that mRNA and protein levels of PPM1B were significantly lower than those of the control group at different times after the initiation of denervation, while P-IKKβ showed the opposite trends. PPM1B protein expression persistently decreased while P-IKKβ expression persistently increased for 28 days after denervation. PPM1B expression correlated negatively with P-IKKβ expression by the Spearman test, whereas decreasing PPM1B expression correlated positively with the muscle wet weight ratio. The expression levels of PPM1B and P-IKKβ were closely associated with atrophy in skeletal denervated muscle. These results suggest that PPM1B and P-IKKβ could be markers in skeletal muscle atrophy.
Muscular atrophy; Denervation; PPM1B; P-IKKβ; IKKβ; RT-PCR; Western blot
Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) has been increasingly used for the treatment of dyslipidemia and cardiovascular disease. Recently, much progress has been made in studies on the mechanisms of action of the lipid-regulating effect of TCM in animal experiments. Current researches showed that the lipid-regulating effect of TCM may be related to the following actions: (1) inhibiting intestinal absorption of lipids; (2) reducing the biosynthesis of endogenous lipids; (3) increasing the catabolism of lipid, sterol substances in live system; (4) increasing the secretion of sterol substances in live system; (5) regulating transcription factors related to lipid metabolism. This paper provides an overview of the recent advances and discusses their implications in future development of lipid-lowering drugs from TCM.
High mobility group AT-hook 1 (HMGA1) is a non-histone nuclear binding protein that is developmentally regulated. HMGA1 is significantly overexpressed in and associated with high grade and advance stage of prostate cancer (PC). The oncogenic role of HMGA1 is at least mediated through chromosomal instability and structural aberrations. However, regulation of HMGA1 expression is not well understood. Identification of microRNA mediated HMGA1 regulation will provide a promising therapeutic target in treating PC.
In this study, we examined the functional relation between miR-296 and HMGA1 expression in several prostate cancer cell lines and a large prostate cancer cohort. We further examined the oncogenic property of HMGA1 regulated by miR-296.
Here we report that miR-296, a microRNA predicted to target HMGA1, specifically represses HMGA1 expression by promoting degradation and inhibiting HMGA1translation . Repression of HMGA1 by miR-296 is direct and sequence-specific. Importantly, ectopic miR-296 expression significantly reduced prostate cancer cell proliferation and invasion, in part through the down-regulation of HMGA1. Examining prostate cancer patient samples, we found an inverse correlation between HMGA1 and miR-296 expression: high levels of HMGA1 were associated with low miR-296 expression and strongly linked to more advanced tumor grade and stage.
Our results indicate miR-296 regulates HMGA1 expression and is associated with PC growth and invasion.
HMGA1; prostate cancer; microRNA
Uterine leiomyomas, or fibroids, represent the most common benign tumor of the female reproductive tract. Fibroids become symptomatic in 30% of all women and up to 70% of African American women of reproductive age. Epigenetic dysregulation of individual genes has been demonstrated in leiomyoma cells; however, the in vivo genome-wide distribution of such epigenetic abnormalities remains unknown.
We characterized and compared genome-wide DNA methylation and mRNA expression profiles in uterine leiomyoma and matched adjacent normal myometrial tissues from 18 African American women. We found 55 genes with differential promoter methylation and concominant differences in mRNA expression in uterine leiomyoma versus normal myometrium. Eighty percent of the identified genes showed an inverse relationship between DNA methylation status and mRNA expression in uterine leiomyoma tissues, and the majority of genes (62%) displayed hypermethylation associated with gene silencing. We selected three genes, the known tumor suppressors KLF11, DLEC1, and KRT19 and verified promoter hypermethylation, mRNA repression and protein expression using bisulfite sequencing, real-time PCR and western blot. Incubation of primary leiomyoma smooth muscle cells with a DNA methyltransferase inhibitor restored KLF11, DLEC1 and KRT19 mRNA levels.
These results suggest a possible functional role of promoter DNA methylation-mediated gene silencing in the pathogenesis of uterine leiomyoma in African American women.