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1.  The Ca2+ channel inhibitor 2-APB reverses β-amyloid-induced LTP deficit in hippocampus by blocking BAX and caspase-3 hyperactivation 
British Journal of Pharmacology  2015;172(9):2273-2285.
Background and Purpose
At the early stage of Alzheimer's disease (AD), the accumulation of β-amyloid (Aβ) oligomers disturbs intracellular Ca2+ homeostasis and disrupts synaptic plasticity of brain neurons. Prevention of Aβ-induced synaptic failure remains an unsolved problem for the treatment of AD. Here, the effects of 2-aminoethoxydiphenyl borate (2-APB), a non-specific, but moderately potent Ca2+ channel inhibitor, on Aβ-induced deficit of synaptic long-term potentiation (LTP) and the underlying molecular mechanisms were explored.
Experimental Approach
We used hippocampal slices and primary cultures of hippocampal neurons from C57BL/6 mice. Methods applied in our study included electrophysiological recording, membrane protein extraction, Western blot assay and Ca2+ imaging.
Key Results
2-APB at 10 μM effectively reversed suppression by oligomeric Aβ1–42 (500 nM) of LTP in hippocampal slices. 2-APB also restored phosphorylation and trafficking of the glutamate receptor subunit GluA1 in Aβ-treated hippocampal slices, supporting its protective action on synaptic function. Aβ-mediated abnormal neuronal [Ca2+]i elevation and hyperactivation of the mitochondrial apoptotic proteins BAX, caspase-3, and glycogen synthase kinase-3β, were blocked by 2-APB pretreatment. Moreover, the defict in long term potentiation deficit in hippocampal slices from APPswe/PS1ΔE9 gene mutant mice was rescued by 2-APB at 10 μM.
Conclusions and Implication
These data demonstrate that 2-APB is a potentially useful chemical to protect synaptic plasticity against neurotoxic effects of Aβ in AD.
doi:10.1111/bph.13048
PMCID: PMC4403093  PMID: 25521332
2.  Au-NiCo2O4 supported on three-dimensional hierarchical porous graphene-like material for highly effective oxygen evolution reaction 
Scientific Reports  2016;6:23398.
A three-dimensional hierarchical porous graphene-like (3D HPG) material was synthesized by a one-step ion-exchange/activation combination method using a cheap metal ion exchanged resin as carbon precursor. The 3D HPG material as support for Au-NiCo2O4 gives good activity and stability for oxygen evolution reaction (OER). The 3D HPG material is induced into NiCo2O4 as conductive support to increase the specific area and improve the poor conductivity of NiCo2O4. The activity of and stability of NiCo2O4 significantly are enhanced by a small amount of Au for OER. Au is a highly electronegative metal and acts as an electron adsorbate, which is believed to facilitate to generate and stabilize Co4+ and Ni3+ cations as the active centres for the OER.
doi:10.1038/srep23398
PMCID: PMC4800497  PMID: 26996816
3.  The Pseudorabies Virus DNA Polymerase Accessory Subunit UL42 Directs Nuclear Transport of the Holoenzyme 
Pseudorabies virus (PRV) DNA replication occurs in the nuclei of infected cells and requires the viral DNA polymerase. The PRV DNA polymerase comprises a catalytic subunit, UL30, and an accessory subunit, UL42, that confers processivity to the enzyme. Its nuclear localization is a prerequisite for its enzymatic function in the initiation of viral DNA replication. However, the mechanisms by which the PRV DNA polymerase holoenzyme enters the nucleus have not been determined. In this study, we characterized the nuclear import pathways of the PRV DNA polymerase catalytic and accessory subunits. Immunofluorescence analysis showed that UL42 localizes independently in the nucleus, whereas UL30 alone predominantly localizes in the cytoplasm. Intriguingly, the localization of UL30 was completely shifted to the nucleus when it was coexpressed with UL42, demonstrating that nuclear transport of UL30 occurs in an UL42-dependent manner. Deletion analysis and site-directed mutagenesis of the two proteins showed that UL42 contains a functional and transferable bipartite nuclear localization signal (NLS) at amino acids 354–370 and that K354, R355, and K367 are important for the NLS function, whereas UL30 has no NLS. Coimmunoprecipitation assays verified that UL42 interacts with importins α3 and α4 through its NLS. In vitro nuclear import assays demonstrated that nuclear accumulation of UL42 is a temperature- and energy-dependent process and requires both importins α and β, confirming that UL42 utilizes the importin α/β-mediated pathway for nuclear entry. In an UL42 NLS-null mutant, the UL42/UL30 heterodimer was completely confined to the cytoplasm when UL42 was coexpressed with UL30, indicating that UL30 utilizes the NLS function of UL42 for its translocation into the nucleus. Collectively, these findings suggest that UL42 contains an importin α/β-mediated bipartite NLS that transports the viral DNA polymerase holoenzyme into the nucleus in an in vitro expression system.
doi:10.3389/fmicb.2016.00124
PMCID: PMC4753316  PMID: 26913023
pseudorabies virus; DNA polymerase; accessory subunit; UL42; nuclear transport
4.  The Succinate Receptor GPR91 Is Involved in Pressure Overload-Induced Ventricular Hypertrophy 
PLoS ONE  2016;11(1):e0147597.
Background
Pulmonary arterial hypertension is characterized by increased pressure overload that leads to right ventricular hypertrophy (RVH). GPR91 is a formerly orphan G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) that has been characterized as a receptor for succinate; however, its role in RVH remains unknown.
Methods and Results
We investigated the role of succinate-GPR91 signaling in a pulmonary arterial banding (PAB) model of RVH induced by pressure overload in SD rats. GPR91 was shown to be located in cardiomyocytes. In the sham and PAB rats, succinate treatment further aggravated RVH, up-regulated RVH-associated genes and increased p-Akt/t-Akt levels in vivo. In vitro, succinate treatment up-regulated the levels of the hypertrophic gene marker anp and p-Akt/t-Akt in cardiomyocytes. All these effects were inhibited by the PI3K antagonist wortmannin both in vivo and in vitro. Finally, we noted that the GPR91-PI3K/Akt axis was also up-regulated compared to that in human RVH.
Conclusions
Our findings indicate that succinate-GPR91 signaling may be involved in RVH via PI3K/Akt signaling in vivo and in vitro. Therefore, GPR91 may be a novel therapeutic target for treating pressure overload-induced RVH.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0147597
PMCID: PMC4732750  PMID: 26824665
5.  Productive Entry of Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus via Macropinocytosis Independent of Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinase 
Scientific Reports  2016;6:19294.
Virus entry is an attractive target for therapeutic intervention. Here, using a combination of electron microscopy, immunofluorescence assay, siRNA interference, specific pharmacological inhibitors, and dominant negative mutation, we demonstrated that the entry of foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) triggered a substantial amount of plasma membrane ruffling. We also found that the internalization of FMDV induced a robust increase in fluid-phase uptake, and virions internalized within macropinosomes colocalized with phase uptake marker dextran. During this stage, the Rac1-Pak1 signaling pathway was activated. After specific inhibition on actin, Na+/H+ exchanger, receptor tyrosine kinase, Rac1, Pak1, myosin II, and protein kinase C, the entry and infection of FMDV significantly decreased. However, inhibition of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) did not reduce FMDV internalization but increased the viral entry and infection to a certain extent, implying that FMDV entry did not require PI3K activity. Results showed that internalization of FMDV exhibited the main hallmarks of macropinocytosis. Moreover, intracellular trafficking of FMDV involves EEA1/Rab5-positive vesicles. The present study demonstrated macropinocytosis as another endocytic pathway apart from the clathrin-mediated pathway. The findings greatly expand our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of FMDV entry into cells, as well as provide potential insights into the entry mechanisms of other picornaviruses.
doi:10.1038/srep19294
PMCID: PMC4725844  PMID: 26757826
6.  Stromal Derived Factor-1/CXCR4 Axis Involved in Bone Marrow Mesenchymal Stem Cells Recruitment to Injured Liver 
Stem Cells International  2016;2016:8906945.
The molecular mechanism of bone marrow mesenchymal stromal stem cells (BMSCs) mobilization and migration to the liver was poorly understood. Stromal cell-derived factor-1 (SDF-1) participates in BMSCs homing and migration into injury organs. We try to investigate the role of SDF-1 signaling in BMSCs migration towards injured liver. The expression of CXCR4 in BMSCs at mRNA level and protein level was confirmed by RT-PCR, flow cytometry, and immunocytochemistry. The SDF-1 or liver lysates induced BMSCs migration was detected by transwell inserts. CXCR4 antagonist, AMD3100, and anti-CXCR4 antibody were used to inhibit the migration. The Sprague-Dawley rat liver injury model was established by intraperitoneal injection of thioacetamide. The concentration of SDF-1 increased as modeling time extended, which was determined by ELISA method. The Dir-labeled BMSCs were injected into the liver of the rats through portal vein. The cell migration in the liver was tracked by in vivo imaging system and the fluorescent intensity was measured. In vivo, BMSCs migrated into injured liver which was partially blocked by AMD3100 or anti-CXCR4 antibody. Taken together, the results demonstrated that the migration of BMSCs was regulated by SDF-1/CXCR4 signaling which involved in BMSCs recruitment to injured liver.
doi:10.1155/2016/8906945
PMCID: PMC4737461  PMID: 26880995
7.  Cultivation-independent comprehensive investigations on bacterial communities in serofluid dish, a traditional Chinese fermented food 
Genomics Data  2015;7:127-128.
Serofluid dish (or Jiangshui, in Chinese), a traditional food in the Chinese culture, is made from vegetables by fermentation. In this study, bacterial community of the fermented serofluid dish was assessed by Illumina amplicon sequencing. The metagenome comprised of 49,589 average raw reads with an average 11,497,917 bp and G + C content is 52.46%. This is the first report on V4 hyper-variable region of the 16S rRNA metagenome sequence employing Illumina platform to profile the microbial community of this little known fermented food from Gansu Province, China. The metagenome sequence can be accessed at NCBI, SRA database accession no. SRP065370.
doi:10.1016/j.gdata.2015.12.019
PMCID: PMC4778640  PMID: 26981386
Serofluid dish; Jiangshui; 16S rRNA; Cultivation-independent; Microbial diversity
8.  Draft genome sequence of Halopiger salifodinae KCY07-B2T, an extremly halophilic archaeon isolated from a salt mine 
Halopiger salifodinae strain KCY07-B2T, isolated from a salt mine in Kuche county, Xinjiang province, China, belongs to the family Halobacteriaceae. It is a strictly aerobic, pleomorphic, rod-shaped, Gram-negative and extremely halophilic archaeon. In this work, we report the features of the type strain KCY07-B2T, together with the draft genome sequence and annotation. The draft genome sequence is composed of 83 contigs for 4,350,718 bp with 65.41 % G + C content and contains 4204 protein-coding genes and 50 rRNA genes.
doi:10.1186/s40793-015-0113-y
PMCID: PMC4675023  PMID: 26664653
Halopiger salifodinae; Archaea; Extreme halophile; Genome; Salt mine
9.  ERCC2 polymorphisms and radiation-induced adverse effects on normal tissue: systematic review with meta-analysis and trial sequential analysis 
Background
The relationship between ERCC2 polymorphisms and the risk of radiotoxicity remains inconclusive. The aim of our study is to systematically evaluate the association between ERCC2 polymorphisms and the risk of radiotoxicity.
Methods
Publications were identified through a search of the PubMed and Web of Science databases up to August 15, 2015. The pooled odds ratios (ORs) with corresponding 95 % confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated to evaluate the association between ERCC2 polymorphisms and radiotoxicity. Trial sequential analysis (TSA) and power calculation were performed to evaluate the type 1 and type 2 errors.
Results
Eleven studies involving 2584 patients were ultimately included in this meta-analysis. Conventional meta-analysis identified a significant association between ERCC2 rs13181 polymorphism and radiotoxicity (OR = 0.71, 95 % CI: 0.55-0.93, P = 0.01), but this association failed to get the confirmation of TSA.
Conclusions
The minor allele of rs13181 polymorphism may confer a protect effect against radiotoxicity. To confirm this correlation at the level of OR = 0.71, an overall information size of approximate 2800 patients were needed.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s13014-015-0558-6) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1186/s13014-015-0558-6
PMCID: PMC4665885  PMID: 26627042
ERCC2; Polymorphism; Radiotherapy; Adverse effect; Radiogenomics
10.  Oryza sativa Chloroplast Signal Recognition Particle 43 (OscpSRP43) Is Required for Chloroplast Development and Photosynthesis 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(11):e0143249.
A rice chlorophyll-deficient mutant w67 was isolated from an ethyl methane sulfonate (EMS)–induced IR64 (Oryza sativa L. ssp. indica) mutant bank. The mutant exhibited a distinct yellow-green leaf phenotype in the whole plant growth duration with significantly reduced levels of chlorophyll and carotenoid, impaired chloroplast development and lowered capacity of photosynthesis compared with the wild-type IR64. Expression of a number of genes associated with chlorophyll metabolism, chloroplast biogenesis and photosynthesis was significantly altered in the mutant. Genetic analysis indicated that the yellow-green phenotype was controlled by a single recessive nuclear gene located on the short arm of chromosome 3. Using map-based strategy, the mutation was isolated and predicted to encode a chloroplast signal recognition particle 43 KD protein (cpSRP43) with 388 amino acid residuals. A single base substitution from A to T at position 160 resulted in a premature stop codon. OscpSRP43 was constitutively expressed in various organs with the highest level in the leaf. Functional complementation could rescue the mutant phenotype and subcellular localization showed that the cpSRP43:GFP fusion protein was targeted to the chloroplast. The data suggested that Oryza sativa cpSRP43 (OscpSRP43) was required for the normal development of chloroplasts and photosynthesis in rice.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0143249
PMCID: PMC4657901  PMID: 26600124
11.  Gavage of D-Ribose induces Aβ-like deposits, Tau hyperphosphorylation as well as memory loss and anxiety-like behavior in mice 
Oncotarget  2015;6(33):34128-34142.
In addition to D-Glucose, D-Ribose is also abnormally elevated in the urine of type 2 diabetic patients, establishing a positive correlation between the concentration of uric D-Ribose and the severity of diabetes. Intraperitoneal injection of D-Ribose causes memory loss and brain inflammation in mice. To simulate a chronic progression of age-related cognitive impairment, we orally administered D-Ribose by gavage at both a low and high dose to 8 week-old male C57BL/6J mice daily for a total of 6 months, followed by behavioral, histological and biochemical analysis. We found that long-term oral administration of D-Ribose impairs spatial learning and memory, accompanied by anxiety-like behavior. Tau was hyperphosphorylated at AT8, S396, S214 and T181 in the brain. Aβ-like deposition was also found in the hippocampus for the high dose group. D-Glucose-gavaged mice did not show significant memory loss and anxiety-like behavior under the same experimental conditions. These results demonstrate that a long-term oral administration of D-Ribose not only induces memory loss with anxiety-like behavior, but also elevates Aβ-like deposition and Tau hyperphosphorylation, presenting D-Ribose-gavaged mouse as a model for age-related cognitive impairment and diabetic encephalopathy.
PMCID: PMC4741441  PMID: 26452037
D-Ribose; memory impairment; Tau hyperphosphorylation; Aβ-like deposition; anxiety-like behavior; Gerotarget
12.  Identification of a novel molecular probe for recognition of human osteosarcoma cell using the cell-SELEX method 
Osteosarcoma is the most common primary malignant bone tumor in adolescents and young adults. The lack of specific probes for human osteosarcoma hinders the early diagnosis and treatment of metastatic disease. In the present study, we have designed a novel aptamer using the cell-based Systematic Evolution of Ligands Exponential Enrichment (cell-SELEX) technique that specifically recognizes the U-2 OS human osteosarcoma cell line. Candidate aptamer families were identified through nine rounds of selection followed by sequence analysis and fluorescent labeling in addition to specific binding to U-2 OS cells. We identified one aptamer that showed high affinity and specificity to target cells, but did not recognize non-osteosarcoma negative control tumor cell lines. Moreover, we show that the selected aptamer can effectively be used as a molecular probe for specific recognition of clinical osteosarcoma samples. The generation of aptamer libraries can be used not only for the specific diagnosis of osteosarcoma, but also to build a platform for developing probe-carrier-antitumor drugs complexes and targeted therapies for osteosarcoma.
PMCID: PMC4694313  PMID: 26770413
Cell-SELEX; osteosarcoma U-2 OS; aptamer
13.  Genome-Wide Identification of Genes Probably Relevant to the Uniqueness of Tea Plant (Camellia sinensis) and Its Cultivars 
Tea (Camellia sinensis) is a popular beverage all over the world and a number of studies have focused on the genetic uniqueness of tea and its cultivars. However, molecular mechanisms underlying these phenomena are largely undefined. In this report, based on expression data available from public databases, we performed a series of analyses to identify genes probably relevant to the uniqueness of C. sinensis and two of its cultivars (LJ43 and ZH2). Evolutionary analyses showed that the evolutionary rates of genes involved in the pathways were not significantly different among C. sinensis, C. oleifera, and C. azalea. Interestingly, a number of gene families, including genes involved in the pathways synthesizing iconic secondary metabolites of tea plant, were significantly upregulated, expressed in C. sinensis (LJ43) when compared to C. azalea, and this may partially explain its higher content of flavonoid, theanine, and caffeine. Further investigation showed that nonsynonymous mutations may partially contribute to the differences between the two cultivars of C. sinensis, such as the chlorina and higher contents of amino acids in ZH2. Genes identified as candidates are probably relevant to the uniqueness of C. sinensis and its cultivars should be good candidates for subsequent functional analyses and marker-assisted breeding.
doi:10.1155/2015/527054
PMCID: PMC4620235  PMID: 26543846
14.  Interfacial and biological properties of the gradient coating on polyamide substrate for bone substitute 
Fabrication of bioactive and mechanical matched bone substitutes is crucial for clinical application in bone defects repair. In this study, nano-hydroxyapatite/polyamide (nHA/PA) composite was coated on injection-moulded PA by a chemical corrosion and phase-inversion technique. The shear strength, gradient composition and pore structure of the bioactive coating were characterized. Osteoblast-like MG63 cells were cultured on pure PA and composite-coated PA samples. The cells' adhesion, spread and proliferation were determined using MTT assay and microscopy. The results confirm that the samples with the nHA/PA composite coating have better cytocompatibility and have no negative effects on cells. To investigate the in vivo biocompatibility, both pure PA and composite-coated PA cylinders were implanted in the trochlea of rabbit femurs and studied histologically, and the bonding ability with bone were determined using push-out tests. The results show that composite-coated implants exhibit better biocompatibility and the shear strength of the composite-coated implants with host bone at 12 weeks can reach 3.49 ± 0.42 MPa, which is significantly higher than that of pure PA implants. These results indicate that composite-coated PA implants have excellent biocompatibility and bonding abilities with host bone and they have the potential to be applied in repair of bone defects.
doi:10.1098/rsif.2014.0101
PMCID: PMC4233721  PMID: 25121648
interfacial properties; gradient coating; polyamide; nano-hydroxyapatite; osteogenesis
15.  Ribosylation triggering Alzheimer’s disease-like Tau hyperphosphorylation via activation of CaMKII 
Aging Cell  2015;14(5):754-763.
Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is regarded as one of the serious risk factors for age-related cognitive impairment; however, a causal link between these two diseases has so far not been established. It was recently discovered that, apart from high D-glucose levels, T2DM patients also display abnormally high concentrations of uric D-ribose. Here, we show for the first time that the administration of D-ribose, the most active glycator among monosaccharides, produces high levels of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) and, importantly, triggers hyperphosphorylation of Tau in the brain of C57BL/6 mouse and neuroblastoma N2a cells. However, the administration of D-glucose showed no significant changes in Tau phosphorylation under the same experimental conditions. Crucially, suppression of AGE formation using an AGEs inhibitor (aminoguanidine) effectively prevents hyperphosphorylation of Tau protein. Further study shows AGEs resulted from ribosylation activate calcium-/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase type II (CaMKII), a key kinase responsible for Tau hyperphosphorylation. These data suggest that there is indeed a mechanistic link between ribosylation and Tau hyperphosphorylation. Targeting ribosylation by inhibiting AGE formation may be a promising therapeutic strategy to prevent Alzheimer’s disease-like Tau hyperphosphorylation and diabetic encephalopathies.
doi:10.1111/acel.12355
PMCID: PMC4568963  PMID: 26095350
hyperphosphorylation; ribosylation; Tau protein
16.  Chamaejasmin B exerts anti-MDR effect in vitro and in vivo via initiating mitochondria-dependant intrinsic apoptosis pathway 
Multidrug resistance (MDR) is the main obstacle limiting the efficacy of cancer chemotherapy. Looking for novel anti-MDR agents is an important way to conquer cancer drug resistance. We recently established that chamaejasmin B (CHB), a natural biflavone from Stellera chamaejasme L., is the major active component. However, its anti-MDR activity is still unknown. This study investigated the anti-MDR effect of CHB and the underlying mechanisms. First, it was found that CHB inhibited the growth of both sensitive and resistant cell lines in vitro, and the average resistant factor (RF) of CHB was only 1.26. Furthermore, CHB also displayed favorable anti-MDR activity in KB and KBV200 cancer cells xenograft mice. Subsequent study showed that CHB induced G0/G1 cell cycle arrest as well as apoptosis both in KB and in resistant KBV200 cancer cells. Further studies showed that CHB had no influence on the level of Fas/FasL and activation of procaspase 8. However, CHB-induced apoptosis was dependent on the activation of caspase 9 and caspase 3. Moreover, CHB treatment resulted in the elevation of the Bax/Bcl-2 ratio, attenuation of mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm), and release of cytochrome c and apoptosis-inducing factor from mitochondria into cytoplasm both in KB and KBV200 cells. In conclusion, CHB exhibited good anti-MDR activity in vitro and in vivo, and the underlying mechanisms may be related to the activation of mitochondrial-dependant intrinsic apoptosis pathway. These findings provide a new leading compound for MDR therapy and supply a new evidence for the potential of CHB to be employed in clinical trial of MDR therapy in cancers.
doi:10.2147/DDDT.S89392
PMCID: PMC4590417  PMID: 26445529
drug resistance; chamaejasmin B; apoptosis; anticancer; Bax/Bcl-2
17.  Conversion to aflibercept for diabetic macular edema unresponsive to ranibizumab or bevacizumab 
Background
The purpose of this study was to determine if eyes with diabetic macular edema (DME) unresponsive to ranibizumab or bevacizumab would benefit from conversion to aflibercept.
Methods
This study was conducted as a retrospective chart review of subjects with DME unresponsive to ranibizumab and/or bevacizumab and subsequently converted to aflibercept.
Results
In total, 21 eyes from 19 subjects of mean age 62±15 years were included. The majority of subjects were male (63%). The median number of ranibizumab or bevacizumab injections before switching to aflibercept was six, and the median number of aflibercept injections after switching was three. Median follow-up was 5 months after the switch. Mean central foveal thickness (CFT) was 453.52±143.39 mm immediately prior to the switch. Morphologically, intraretinal cysts were present in all cases. Mean CFT after the first injection decreased significantly to 362.57±92.82 mm (Wilcoxon signed-rank test; P<0.001). At the end of follow-up, the mean CFT was 324.17±98.76 mm (P<0.001). Mean visual acuity was 0.42±0.23 logMAR just prior to the switch, 0.39±0.31 logMAR after one aflibercept injection, and 0.37±0.22 log-MAR at the end of follow-up. The final visual acuity was significantly better than visual acuity before the switch (P=0.04).
Conclusion
Eyes with DME unresponsive to multiple ranibizumab/bevacizumab injections demonstrate anatomical and visual improvement on conversion to aflibercept.
doi:10.2147/OPTH.S81523
PMCID: PMC4577250  PMID: 26396494
diabetic retinopathy; macular edema; aflibercept; bevacizumab; ranibizumab
18.  Suppressing Nitrite-oxidizing Bacteria Growth to Achieve Nitrogen Removal from Domestic Wastewater via Anammox Using Intermittent Aeration with Low Dissolved Oxygen 
Scientific Reports  2015;5:13048.
Achieving nitrogen removal from domestic wastewater using anaerobic ammonium oxidation (anammox) has the potential to make wastewater treatment energy-neutral or even energy-positive. The challenge is to suppress the growth of nitrite-oxidizing bacteria (NOB). This study presents a promising method based on intermittent aeration with low dissolved oxygen to limit NOB growth, thereby providing an advantage to anammox bacteria to form a partnership with the ammonium-oxidizing bacteria (AOB). The results showed that NOB was successfully suppressed using that method, with the relative abundance of NOB maintained between 2.0–2.6%, based on Fluorescent in-situ Hybridization. Nitrogen could be effectively removed from domestic wastewater with anammox at a temperature above 20 °C, with an effluent total nitrogen (TN) concentration of 6.6 ± 2.7 mg/L, while the influent TN and soluble chemical oxygen demand were 62.6 ± 3.1 mg/L and 88.0 ± 8.1 mg/L, respectively.
doi:10.1038/srep13048
PMCID: PMC4564738  PMID: 26354321
19.  Human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cell transplantation restores damaged ovaries 
Ovarian injury because of chemotherapy can decrease the levels of sexual hormones and potentia generandi of patients, thereby greatly reducing quality of life. The goal of this study was to investigate which transplantation method for human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (HUMSCs) can recover ovarian function that has been damaged by chemotherapy. A rat model of ovarian injury was established using an intraperitoneal injection of cyclophosphamide. Membrane-labelled HUMSCs were subsequently injected directly into ovary tissue or tail vein. The distribution of fluorescently labelled HUMSCs, estrous cycle, sexual hormone levels, and potentia generandi of treated and control rats were then examined. HUMSCs injected into the ovary only distributed to the ovary and uterus, while HUMSCs injected via tail vein were detected in the ovary, uterus, kidney, liver and lung. The estrous cycle, levels of sex hormones and potentia generandi of the treated rats were also recovered to a certain degree. Moreover, in some transplanted rats, fertility was restored and their offspring developed normally. While ovary injection could recover ovarian function faster, both methods produced similar results in the later stages of observation. Therefore, our results suggest that transplantation of HUMSCs by tail vein injection represents a minimally invasive and effective treatment method for ovarian injury.
doi:10.1111/jcmm.12571
PMCID: PMC4568915  PMID: 25922900
umbilical cord; human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cell; ovarian function
20.  Invasive fungal infection in allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplant recipients: single center experiences of 12 years*  
Invasive fungal infection (IFI) is a growing cause of morbidity and mortality among patients after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT). We retrospectively reviewed the records of 408 patients undergoing allo-HSCTs during the period November 1998 to December 2009, analyzed the incidence and risk factors of IFI, and examined the impact of IFI on overall survival. A total of 92 (22.5%) episodes suffered proven or probable IFI (4 patients were proven, 88 patients were probable). Candida was the most common pathogen for early IFI, and mold was the most frequent causative organism for late IFI. A prior history of IFI, human leukocyte antigen (HLA) mismatch, long-time neutropenia, and acute graft-versus-host-disease (GVHD) were risk factors for early IFI. A prior history of IFI, corticosteroid therapy, cytomegalovirus (CMV) disease, and chronic GVHD were risk factors for late IFI. IFI-related mortality was 53.26%. The 12-year overall survival (OS) rate for IFI was significantly lower than that of patients without IFI (41.9% vs. 63.6%, P<0.01).
doi:10.1631/jzus.B1500005
PMCID: PMC4569688  PMID: 26365122
Invasive fungal infection; Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation; Incidence; Risk factors
21.  Anxiolytic effect of essential oils of Salvia miltiorrhiza in rats 
This study aims to investigate the anxiolytic effects of essential oil from S. miltiorrhiza in rats. The elevated plus maze test and the social interaction test were performed to evaluate the anxiolytic effects of essential oil. The levels of noradrenaline (NE), dopamine (DA) and serotonin (5-HT) in cerebral cortex of rats as well as the plasma corticosterone (CORT) level were examined in the rats with the treatment of essential oil. The rota-rod test was carried out to exclude any false positive results in experimental procedures related to anxiety disorders. The catalepsy test was carried out to investigate whether essential oil induces the catalepsy. Our results showed that oral administration of essential oil increased the percentage of time spent in the open arms and increased the number of entries to the open arms in the elevated plus maze test. Oral administration of essential oil also increased the time for social interaction in rats. No apparent extrapyramidal symptom (EPS) was observed in the animals with essential oil treatment. The effect of essential oil in the intracellular chloride (Cl-) concentration in the cultured human neuroblastoma cells was assessed. Treatment with essential oil (50-100 mg/kg) increased intracellular Cl- concentration in the cell culture in a dose-dependent manner, suggesting the involvement of GABAA receptor-Cl- ion channel. Together, our data indicate an anxiolytic effect induced by the essential oil from S. miltiorrhiza.
PMCID: PMC4612874  PMID: 26550189
Salvia. Miltiorrhiza; essential oil; anxiolytic effect; monoamines; GABAA receptor
22.  Quantitative Proteomic Analysis of BHK-21 Cells Infected with Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus Serotype Asia 1 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(7):e0132384.
Stable isotope labeling with amino acids in cell culture (SILAC) was used to quantitatively study the host cell gene expression profile, in order to achieve an unbiased overview of the protein expression changes in BHK-21 cells infected with FMDV serotype Asia 1. The SILAC-based approach identified overall 2,141 proteins, 153 of which showed significant alteration in the expression level 6 h post FMDV infection (57 up-regulated and 96 down-regulated). Among these proteins, six cellular proteins, including three down-regulated (VPS28, PKR, EVI5) and three up-regulated (LYPLA1, SEC62 and DARs), were selected according to the significance of the changes and/or the relationship with PKR. The expression level and pattern of the selected proteins were validated by immunoblotting and confocal microscopy. Furthermore, the functions of these cellular proteins were assessed by small interfering RNA-mediated depletion, and their functional importance in the replication of FMDV was demonstrated by western blot, reverse transcript PCR (RT-PCR) and 50% Tissue Culture Infective Dose (TCID50). The results suggest that FMDV infection may have effects on the expression of specific cellular proteins to create more favorable conditions for FMDV infection. This study provides novel data that can be utilized to understand the interactions between FMDV and the host cell.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0132384
PMCID: PMC4498813  PMID: 26161868
23.  Association between Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms in XRCC3 and Radiation-Induced Adverse Effects on Normal Tissue: A Meta-Analysis 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(6):e0130388.
The X-ray repair cross-complementing group 3 (XRCC3) protein plays an important role in the repair of DNA double-strand breaks. The relationship between XRCC3 polymorphisms and the risk of radiation-induced adverse effects on normal tissue remains inconclusive. Thus, we performed a meta-analysis to elucidate the association between XRCC3 polymorphisms and radiation-induced adverse effects on normal tissue. All eligible studies up to December 2014 were identified through a search of the PubMed, Embase and Web of Science databases. Seventeen studies involving 656 cases and 2193 controls were ultimately included in this meta-analysis. The pooled odds ratios (ORs) with corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated to evaluate the association between XRCC3 polymorphisms and the risk of radiation-induced normal tissue adverse effects. We found that the XRCC3 p.Thr241Met (rs861539) polymorphism was significantly associated with early adverse effects induced by radiotherapy (OR = 1.99, 95%CI: 1.31–3.01, P = 0.001). A positive association lacking statistical significance with late adverse effects was also identified (OR = 1.28, 95%CI: 0.97–1.68, P = 0.08). In addition, the rs861539 polymorphism was significantly correlated with a higher risk of adverse effects induced by head and neck area irradiation (OR = 2.41, 95%CI: 1.49–3.89, p = 0.0003) and breast irradiation (OR = 1.41, 95%CI: 1.02–1.95, p = 0.04), whereas the correlation was not significant for lung irradiation or pelvic irradiation. Furthermore, XRCC3 rs1799794 polymorphism may have a protective effect against late adverse effects induced by radiotherapy (OR = 0.47, 95%CI: 0.26–0.86, P = 0.01). Well-designed large-scale clinical studies are required to further validate our results.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0130388
PMCID: PMC4474802  PMID: 26091483
24.  Electrospun Gelatin/β-TCP Composite Nanofibers Enhance Osteogenic Differentiation of BMSCs and In Vivo Bone Formation by Activating Ca2+-Sensing Receptor Signaling 
Stem Cells International  2015;2015:507154.
Calcium phosphate- (CaP-) based composite scaffolds have been used extensively for the bone regeneration in bone tissue engineering. Previously, we developed a biomimetic composite nanofibrous membrane of gelatin/β-tricalcium phosphate (TCP) and confirmed their biological activity in vitro and bone regeneration in vivo. However, how these composite nanofibers promote the osteogenic differentiation of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) is unknown. Here, gelatin/β-TCP composite nanofibers were fabricated by incorporating 20 wt% β-TCP nanoparticles into electrospun gelatin nanofibers. Electron microscopy showed that the composite β-TCP nanofibers had a nonwoven structure with a porous network and a rough surface. Spectral analyses confirmed the presence and chemical stability of the β-TCP and gelatin components. Compared with pure gelatin nanofibers, gelatin/β-TCP composite nanofibers caused increased cell attachment, proliferation, alkaline phosphatase activity, and osteogenic gene expression in rat BMSCs. Interestingly, the expression level of the calcium-sensing receptor (CaSR) was significantly higher on the composite nanofibrous scaffolds than on pure gelatin. For rat calvarial critical sized defects, more extensive osteogenesis and neovascularization occurred in the composite scaffolds group compared with the gelatin group. Thus, gelatin/β-TCP composite scaffolds promote osteogenic differentiation of BMSCs in vitro and bone regeneration in vivo by activating Ca2+-sensing receptor signaling.
doi:10.1155/2015/507154
PMCID: PMC4466496  PMID: 26124840
25.  Viroporin Activity of the Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus Non-Structural 2B Protein 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(5):e0125828.
Viroporins are a family of low-molecular-weight hydrophobic transmembrane proteins that are encoded by various animal viruses. Viroporins form transmembrane pores in host cells via oligomerization, thereby destroying cellular homeostasis and inducing cytopathy for virus replication and virion release. Among the Picornaviridae family of viruses, the 2B protein encoded by enteroviruses is well understood, whereas the viroporin activity of the 2B protein encoded by the foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) has not yet been described. An analysis of the FMDV 2B protein domains by computer-aided programs conducted in this study revealed that this protein may contain two transmembrane regions. Further biochemical, biophysical and functional studies revealed that the protein possesses a number of features typical of a viroporin when it is overexpressed in bacterial and mammalian cells as well as in FMDV-infected cells. The protein was found to be mainly localized in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), with both the N- and C-terminal domains stretched into the cytosol. It exhibited cytotoxicity in Escherichia coli, which attenuated 2B protein expression. The release of virions from cells infected with FMDV was inhibited by amantadine, a viroporin inhibitor. The 2B protein monomers interacted with each other to form both intracellular and extracellular oligomers. The Ca2+ concentration in the cells increased, and the integrity of the cytoplasmic membrane was disrupted in cells that expressed the 2B protein. Moreover, the 2B protein induced intense autophagy in host cells. All of the results of this study demonstrate that the FMDV 2B protein has properties that are also found in other viroporins and may be involved in the infection mechanism of FMDV.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0125828
PMCID: PMC4422707  PMID: 25946195

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