The median age of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) patients is 71 years. PDAC rarely affects individuals under the age of 45. We investigated features of PDAC occurring in young patients (≤45 years) who underwent surgical resection in order to determine if any difference exists in comparison to elderly patients (≥70 years).
A retrospective analysis of patients with PDAC who were ≤45 years on the date of surgery between 1975 and 2009 was performed. This cohort was compared with PDAC patients whose ages were over 70 years on the date of surgery over the same time interval. Information reviewed included demographics, Charlson Age–Comorbidity Index (CACI), pathological staging, surgical management, and death or last follow-up.
Seventy five patients with PDAC of age ≤45 years at surgery were identified. The reference group consisted of 870 patients with a median age of 75. The most common symptoms of young patients were jaundice (45 %), abdominal pain (32 %), or weight loss (33 %). This did not differ significantly from older patients. Among the younger patients, 7 (9 %) underwent total pancreatectomy, 60 (80 %) underwent pancreaticoduodenectomy, and 8 (11 %) had distal pancreatectomy. The distribution of type of surgery was similar between two groups. Fifty-two of the young patients (69 %) had an R0 resection and this did not differ from the older age group (n=616; 71 %). The rate of lymph node positivity was 68 % for younger patients and 74 % for older patients (p=0.27). Of the younger patients, 11, 13, 49, and 2 were classified as stage I, IIA, IIB, and III, respectively, and did not differ from the older age group. The median overall survival for the young patients cohort was 19 months (95 % CI 15–22 months) which is longer than 16 months (95 % CI 14–17 months) of the older group (p=0.007). The actual 5- and 10- year survival in young age group (24 and 17 %) was longer than that in old age group (11 and 3 %) (p<0.05). The median CACI of the younger patients was 0.5 and was lower than 4.1 of the older patients (p<0.0001).
The demographic, pathologic, and treatment characteristics of PDAC patients younger than 45 years were similar to those older than 70 years. Younger patients had fewer complications after curative resections. The better survival among younger patients is likely related to fewer comorbidities in this group. These findings will be useful in counseling young patients with resectable pancreatic cancer.
Pancreas surgery; Morbidity; Mortality; Outcomes
A novel horseradish peroxidase- (HPR-) doped magnetic core-shell Fe3O4@SiO2@Au nanocomposites (Fe-Au MNPs) were employed on immunoassay for the determination of C-reactive protein (CRP) based on a electrochemical quartz crystal microbalance detector (EQCM). Firstly, the secondary CRP antibody and HRP were both immobilized on the Fe-Au MNPs (Fe-Au MNPs-anti-CRP2/HRP) as a signal tag. Secondly, the above tag and the primary antibody (anti-CRP1) in the bottom of 96-well microtiter plate were employed to conjugate with a serial of CRP concentrations to produce a sandwich immunocomplex. Thirdly, the immunocomplex solution was subsequently exposed to 3, 3′-diaminobenzidine (DAB) in the presence of H2O2, resulting in an insoluble product. When the precipitation solution was dripped on EQCM, it can achieve a decrease of frequency of crystal (Δf). The amount of Δf was proportional to (CRP) from 0.003 to 200 ng mL−1 with a low detection limit of 1 pg mL−1. Compared with the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), the immunoassay shows greatly improved sensitivity due to the significant amount of HRP labeled on signal tag. It also has good specificity and low sample consumption, which is expected to be a benefit for the CRP screening in early diagnosis of cardiovascular disease.
Hemoglobinopathies are the most common inherited diseases in southern China. However, there have been only a few epidemiological studies of hemoglobinopathies in Guangdong province.
Materials and Methods
Peripheral blood samples were collected from 15299 “healthy” unrelated subjects of dominantly ethnic Hakka in the Meizhou region, on which hemoglobin electrophoresis and routine blood tests were performed. Suspected cases with hemoglobin variants and hereditary persistence of fetal hemoglobin (HPFH) were further characterized by PCR, DNA sequencing, reverse dot blot (RDB) or multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA). In addition, 1743 samples were randomly selected from the 15299 subjects for thalassemia screening, and suspected thalassemia carriers were identified by PCR and RDB.
The gene frequency of hemoglobin variants was 0.477% (73/15299). The five main subgroups of the ten hemoglobin variants were Hb E, Hb G-Chinese, Hb Q-Tahiland, Hb New York and Hb J-Bangkok. 277 cases (15.89%, 277/1743) of suspected thalassemia carriers with microcytosis (MCV<82 fl) were found by thalassemia screening, and were tested by a RDB gene chip to reveal a total of 196 mutant chromosomes: including 124 α-thalassemia mutant chromosomes and 72 β-thalassemia mutant chromosomes. These results give a heterozygote frequency of 11.24% for common α and β thalassemia in the Hakka population in the Meizhou region. 3 cases of HPFH/δβ-thalassemia were found, including 2 cases of Vietnamese HPFH (FPFH-7) and a rare Belgian Gγ(Aγδβ)0–thalassemia identified in Chinese.
Our results provide a detailed prevalence and molecular characterization of hemoglobinopathies in Hakka people of the Meizhou region. The estimated numbers of pregnancies each year in the Meizhou region, in which the fetus would be at risk for β thalassemia major or intermedia, Bart’s hydrops fetalis, and Hb H disease, are 25 (95% CI, 15 to 38), 40 (95% CI, 26 to 57), and 15 (95% CI, 8 to 23), respectively.
The concept of one-protein–multiple-function, i.e. moonlighting proteins, is an ever-expanding paradigm. We obtained compelling evidence that an array of ‘cytoplasmic’ metabolic enzymes can enter the nuclei to carry out moonlighting transcription functions; this phenomenon is conserved from Drosophila to humans. Of particular interest are the classical glycolytic enzymes GAPDH (glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase) and LDH (lactate dehydrogenase), which utilize NAD(H) as coenzymes and not only moonlight (in their nuclear forms) to regulate the transcription of S-phase-specific histone genes, but also act as metabolic/redox sensors that link histone gene switching to DNA replication and S-phase progression.
chromosome; enzyme; GAPDH; histone 2B; S-phase; ATM, ataxia telangiectasia mutated; ATR, ataxia telangiectasia mutated- and Rad3-related; awd, abnormal wing disc; CBP, CREB (cAMP-response-element-binding protein)-binding protein; CDK, cyclin-dependent kinase; dm, Drosophila melanogaster; DSB, double-strand break; GAPDH, glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase; H2B, histone 2B; HAT, histone acetyl transferase; HDAC, histone deacetylase; HU, hydroxyurea; LDH, lactate dehydrogenase; MMC, mammalian metabolic cycle; nm23, non-metastasis 23; NPAT, nuclear protein, ataxia-telangiectasia locus; OCA-S, Oct-1 co-activator in the S-phase; PIKK, phosphoinositide 3-kinase-related kinase; RNAi, RNA interference; SLBP, stem–loop-binding protein; Tip60, Tat (transactivator of transcription)-interactive protein 60 kDa; YMC, yeast metabolic cycle
The VPAC1 receptor, a member of the vasoactive intestinal peptide receptors (VIPRs), is overexpressed in the most frequently occurring malignant tumors and plays a major role in the progression and angiogenesis of a number of malignancies. Recently, phage display has become widely used for many applications, including ligand generation for targeted imaging, drug delivery and therapy. In this work, we developed a panning procedure using a phage display peptide library to select a peptide that specifically binds to the VPAC1 receptor to develop a novel targeted probe for molecular imaging and therapy.
CHO-K1 cells stably expressing VPAC1 receptors (CHO-K1/VPAC1 cells) were used to select a VPAC1-binding peptide from a 12-mer phage peptide library. DNA sequencing and homologous analysis of the randomly selected phage clones were performed. A cellular ELISA was used to determine the most selectively binding peptide for further investigation. Binding specificity to the VPAC1 receptor was analyzed by competitive inhibition ELISA and flow cytometry. The binding ability of the selected peptide to CHO-K1/VPAC1 cells and colorectal cancer (CRC) cell lines was confirmed using fluorescence microscopy and flow cytometry.
A significant enrichment of phages that specifically bound to CHO-K1/VPAC1 cells was obtained after four rounds of panning. Of the selected phage clones, 16 out of 60 shared the same peptide sequence, GFRFGALHEYNS, which we termed the VP2 peptide. VP2 and vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) competitively bound to the VPAC1 receptor. More importantly, we confirmed that VP2 specifically bound to CHO-K1/VPAC1 cells and several CRC cell lines.
Our results demonstrate that the VP2 peptide could specifically bind to VPAC1 receptor and several CRC cell lines. And VP2 peptide may be a potential candidate to be developed as a useful diagnostic molecular imaging probe for early detection of CRC.
Most of colorectal adenocarcinomas are believed to arise from adenomas, which are premalignant lesions. Sequencing the whole exome of the adenoma will help identifying molecular biomarkers that can predict the occurrence of adenocarcinoma more precisely and help understanding the molecular pathways underlying the initial stage of colorectal tumorigenesis. We performed the exome capture sequencing of the normal mucosa, adenoma and adenocarcinoma tissues from the same patient and sequenced the identified mutations in additional 73 adenomas and 288 adenocarcinomas. Somatic single nucleotide variations (SNVs) were identified in both the adenoma and adenocarcinoma by comparing with the normal control from the same patient. We identified 12 nonsynonymous somatic SNVs in the adenoma and 42 nonsynonymous somatic SNVs in the adenocarcinoma. Most of these mutations including OR6X1, SLC15A3, KRTHB4, RBFOX1, LAMA3, CDH20, BIRC6, NMBR, GLCCI1, EFR3A, and FTHL17 were newly reported in colorectal adenomas. Functional annotation of these mutated genes showed that multiple cellular pathways including Wnt, cell adhesion and ubiquitin mediated proteolysis pathways were altered genetically in the adenoma and that the genetic alterations in the same pathways persist in the adenocarcinoma. CDH20 and LAMA3 were mutated in the adenoma while NRXN3 and COL4A6 were mutated in the adenocarcinoma from the same patient, suggesting for the first time that genetic alterations in the cell adhesion pathway occur as early as in the adenoma. Thus, the comparison of genomic mutations between adenoma and adenocarcinoma provides us a new insight into the molecular events governing the early step of colorectal tumorigenesis.
Non-visual photoreception in mammals is primarily mediated by two splice variants that derive from a single melanopsin (OPN4M) gene, whose expression is restricted to a subset of retinal ganglion cells. Physiologically, this sensory system regulates the photoentrainment of many biological rhythms, such as sleep via the melatonin endocrine system and pupil constriction. By contrast, melanopsin exists as two distinct lineages in non-mammals, opn4m and opn4x, and is broadly expressed in a wide range of tissue types, including the eye, brain, pineal gland and skin. Despite these findings, the evolution and function of melanopsin in early vertebrates are largely unknown. We, therefore, investigated the complement of opn4 classes present in the genome of a model deep-sea cartilaginous species, the elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii), as a representative vertebrate that resides at the base of the gnathostome (jawed vertebrate) lineage. We reveal that three melanopsin genes, opn4m1, opn4m2 and opn4x, are expressed in multiple tissues of the elephant shark. The two opn4m genes are likely to have arisen as a result of a lineage-specific duplication, whereas “long” and “short” splice variants are generated from a single opn4x gene. By using a heterologous expression system, we suggest that these genes encode functional photopigments that exhibit both “invertebrate-like” bistable and classical “vertebrate-like” monostable biochemical characteristics. We discuss the evolution and function of these melanopsin pigments within the context of the diverse photic and ecological environments inhabited by this chimaerid holocephalan, as well as the origin of non-visual sensory systems in early vertebrates.
The Na+/Ca2+ exchanger CALX promotes Ca2+ efflux in Drosophila sensory neuronal cells to facilitate light-mediated Ca2+ homeostasis. CALX activity is negatively regulated by specific Ca2+ interaction within its two intracellular Ca2+ regulatory domains CBD1 and CBD2, yet how the Ca2+ binding is converted to molecular motion to operate the exchanger is unknown. Here we report crystal structures of the entire Ca2+ regulatory domain CBD12 from two alternative splicing isoforms, CALX, 1.1 and 1.2, exhibiting distinct regulatory Ca2+-dependency. The structures show an open V-shaped conformation with four Ca2+ ions bound on the CBD domain interface, confirmed by LRET analysis. The structures together with Ca2+ binding analysis support that the Ca2+ inhibition of CALX is achieved by interdomain conformational changes induced by Ca2+ binding at CBD1. The conformational difference between the two isoforms also indicates that alternative splicing adjusts the interdomain orientation angle to modify the Ca2+ regulatory property of the exchangers.
Recently, the coexistence of gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs) with other neoplasms has been studied with increasing frequency. Coexistence of pancreatic cancer with GISTs remains a rarity; however, here, we report a very rare case of adenosquamous carcinoma (ASC) of the uncinate process of the pancreas with synchronous GISTs of the stomach in a 62-year-old female. The patient presented with epigastric discomfort and vomiting. Radiographic imaging revealed two masses; one located at the body of the stomach and the other located at the uncinate process of the pancreas. Intraoperatively, a fine needle aspiration biopsy was conducted in the uncinate process of the pancreas, which revealed the malignancy of the masses. A pancreaticoduodenectomy and partial gastrectomy were then conducted, and subsequent pathological examinations identified an ASC of the pancreas and a GIST of the stomach. In our case, contrary to the majority of previous cases of synchronous GISTs and other malignancies, GIST was not an incidental finding. The initial suspicion on the GIST as the underlying cause of clinical symptoms led to the discovery of the ASC of the uncinate process of the pancreas.
adenosquamous carcinoma; gastrointestinal stromal tumor; synchronous cancer; uncinate process of the pancreas
Epigenetic modification generally refers to phenotypic changes by a mechanism other than changes in DNA sequence and plays a significant role in developmental processes. In this study, we found that overexpression of one alternatively spliced tomato DDB1 transcript, DDB1F that is prevalently present in all tested tissues, resulted in reduction of organ size. Transgenic plants constitutively expressing the DDB1F from a strong cauliflower mosaic virus (CaMV) 35S promoter displayed moderately reduced size in vegetative organs (leaves and stems) and radically decreased size in reproductive organs (flowers, seeds and fruits), in which several genes encoding negative regulators for cell division were upregulated. Significantly, reduction of organ size conferred by overexpression of DDB1F transgene appears not to segregate in the subsequent generations, suggesting the phenotypic alternations are manipulated in an epigenetic manner and can be transmitted over generations. This notion was further substantiated by analysis of DNA methylation level at the SlWEE1 gene (encoding a negative regulator of cell division), revealing a correlation between less methylation in the promoter region and elevated expression level of this gene. Thus, our results suggest DDB1 plays an important role in regulation of the epigenetic state of genes involved in organogenesis, despite the underlying mechanism remains to be elucidated.
In China, rubella vaccination was introduced into the national immunization program in 2008, and a rubella epidemic occurred in the same year. In order to know whether changes in the genotypic distribution of rubella viruses have occurred in the postvaccination era, we investigate in detail the epidemiological profile of rubella in China and estimate the evolutionary rate, molecular clock phylogeny, and demographic history of the predominant rubella virus genotypes circulating in China using Bayesian Markov chain Monte Carlo phylodynamic analyses. 1E was found to be the predominant rubella virus genotype since its initial isolation in China in 2001, and no genotypic shift has occurred since then. The results suggest that the global 1E genotype may have diverged in 1995 and that it has evolved at a mutation rate of 1.65 × 10−3 per site per year. The Chinese 1E rubella virus isolates were grouped into either cluster 1 or cluster 2, which likely originated in 1997 and 2006, respectively. Cluster 1 viruses were found in all provinces examined in this study and had a mutation rate of 1.90 × 10−3 per site per year. The effective number of infections remained constant until 2007, and along with the introduction of rubella vaccine into the national immunization program, although the circulation of cluster 1 viruses has not been interrupted, some viral lineages have disappeared, and the epidemic started a decline that led to a decrease in the effective population size. Cluster 2 viruses were found only in Hainan Province, likely because of importation.
To enhance the accuracy of radioactive seed implants in the head and neck, a digital model individual template, containing information simultaneously on needle pathway and facial features, was designed to guide implantation with CT imaging. Thirty-one patients with recurrent and local advanced malignant tumors of head and neck after prior surgery and radiotherapy were involved in this study. Before 125I implants, patients received CT scans based on 0.75mm thickness. And the brachytherapy treatment planning system (BTPS) software was used to make the implantation plan based on the CT images. Mimics software and Geomagic software were used to read the data containing CT images and implantation plan, and to design the individual template. Then the individual template containing the information of needle pathway and face features simultaneously was made through rapid prototyping (RP) technique. All patients received 125I seeds interstitial implantation under the guide of the individual template and CT. The individual templates were positioned easily and accurately, and were stable. After implants, treatment quality evaluation was made by CT and TPS. The seeds and dosages distribution (D90,V100,V150) were well meet the treatment requirement. Clinical practice confirms that this approach can facilitate easier and more accurate implantation.
Digital model; individual template; radioactive seeds; head and neck
In our recent publication (Zheng et al., PLoS ONE) we described the identification of annexin A2 as a new pancreatic cancer associated tumor antigen. Its involvement in pancreatic cancer progression and metastases supports its role as an antigenic target for the development of both therapeutic antibody and T cell immunotherapy.
annexin A2; pancreatic cancer; therapeutic target; tumor-associated antigen; vaccine
In this paper, Fe3O4 nanoparticles (Fe3O4 NPs) grafted carboxyl groups of multiwalled carbon nanotubes with cationic polyelectrolyte poly (dimethyldiallylammonium chloride) (PDDA) (MWCNTs-COO−/PDDA@Fe3O4), are successfully synthesized and used for the extraction of six kinds of major toxic polychorinated biphenyls (PCBs) from a large volume of water solution. The hydrophilicity of the PDDA cage can enhance the dispersibility of sorbents in water samples, and the superparamagnetism of the Fe3O4 NPs facilitate magnetic separation which directly led to the simplification of the extraction procedure. With the magnetic solid-phase extraction (MSPE) technique based on the MWCNTs-COO−/PDDA@Fe3O4 sorbents, it requires only 30 min to extract trace levels of PCBs from 500 mL water samples. When the eluate condensed to 1.0 mL, concentration factors for PCBs became over 500. The spiked recoveries of several real water samples for PCBs were in the range of 73.3–98.9% with relative standard deviations varying from 3.8% to 9.4%, reflecting good accuracy of the method. Therefore, preconcentration of trace level of PCBs by using this MWCNTs-COO−/PDDA@Fe3O4 sorbent, which are stable for multiple reuses, from water solution can be performed.
Fe3O4 nanoparticles; MWCNTs; solid-phase extraction; polychorinated biphenyls; trace levels
In this study, the function of a LEA gene (TaLEA1) from Tamrix androssowii in response to heavy metal stress was characterized. Time-course expression analyses showed that NaCl, ZnCl2, CuSO4, and CdCl2 considerably increased the expression levels of the TaLEA1 gene, thereby suggesting that this gene plays a role in the responses to these test stressors. To analyze the heavy metal stress-tolerance mechanism regulated by TaLEA1, TaLEA1-overexpressing transgenic poplar plants (Populus davidiana Dode × P. bollena Lauche) were generated. Significant differences were not observed between the proline content of the transgenic and wild-type (WT) plants before and after CdCl2 stress. However, in comparison with the WT plants, the TaLEA1-transformed poplar plants had significantly higher superoxide dismutase (SOD) and peroxidase (POD) activities, and lower malondialdehyde (MDA) levels under CdCl2 stress. Further, the transgenic plants showed better growth than the WT plants did, indicating that TaLEA1 provides tolerance to cadmium stress. These results suggest that TaLEA1 confers tolerance to cadmium stress by enhancing reactive oxygen species (ROS)-scavenging ability and decreasing lipid peroxidation. Subcellular-localization analysis showed that the TaLEA1 protein was distributed in the cytoplasm and nucleus.
LEA gene; cadmium stress; stress tolerance; gene transformation; physiological response
The purpose of this study was to devise a novel electrochemical immunosensor for ultrasensitive detection of alfa-fetoprotein based on Fe3O4/Au nanoparticles as a carrier using a multienzyme amplification strategy.
Methods and results
Greatly enhanced sensitivity was achieved using bioconjugates containing horseradish peroxidase (HRP) and a secondary antibody (Ab2) linked to Fe3O4/Au nanoparticles (Fe3O4/Au-HRP-Ab2) at a high HRP/Ab2 ratio. After a sandwich immunoreaction, the Fe3O4/Au-HRP-Ab2 captured on the electrode surface produced an amplified electrocatalytic response by reduction of enzymatically oxidized hydroquinone in the presence of hydrogen peroxide. The high content of HRP in the Fe3O4/Au-HRP-Ab2 could greatly amplify the electrochemical signal. Under optimal conditions, the reduction current increased with increasing alfa-fetoprotein concentration in the sample, and exhibited a dynamic range of 0.005–10 ng/mL with a detection limit of 3 pg/mL.
The amplified immunoassay developed in this work shows good precision, acceptable stability, and reproducibility, and can be used for detection of alfa-fetoprotein in real samples, so provides a potential alternative tool for detection of protein in the laboratory. Furthermore, this immunosensor could be regenerated by simply using an external magnetic field.
Fe3O4/Au nanoparticles; alfa-fetoprotein; sandwich immunoassay; electrochemical immunosensor
Pituitary tumors are common intracranial neoplasms, yet few germline abnormalities have been implicated in their pathogenesis. Here we show that a single nucleotide germline polymorphism (SNP) substituting an arginine (R) for glycine (G) in the FGFR4 transmembrane domain can alter pituitary cell growth and hormone production. Compared with FGFR4-G388 mammosomatotroph cells that support prolactin (PRL) production, FGFR4-R388 cells express predominantly growth hormone (GH). Growth promoting effects of FGFR4-R388 as evidenced by enhanced colony formation was ascribed to Src activation and mitochondrial serine phosphorylation of STAT3 (pS-STAT3). In contrast, diminished pY-STAT3 mediated by FGFR4-R388 relieved GH inhibition leading to hormone excess. Using a knock-in mouse model, we demonstrate the ability of FGFR4-R385 to promote GH pituitary tumorigenesis. In patients with acromegaly, pituitary tumor size correlated with hormone excess in the presence of the FGFR4-R388 but not the FGFR4-G388 allele. Our findings establish a new role for the FGFR4-G388R polymorphism in pituitary oncogenesis, providing a rationale for targeting Src and STAT3 in the personalized treatment of associated disorders.
Several human cancers have been associated with increased growth hormone levels. Here we show that a frequent single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) associated with increased cancer risk and progression also deregulates pituitary function. Through recruitment of a distinct STAT3 signaling cascade, this polymorphic receptor variant drives pituitary growth hormone cell survival and hormonal output. These findings provide an example of a potentially common genetic program shared between cancer and a hormone that promotes its progression.
Sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) is globally produced as a source of food, feed, fiber and fuel. Grain and sweet sorghums differ in a number of important traits, including stem sugar and juice accumulation, plant height as well as grain and biomass production. The first whole genome sequence of a grain sorghum is available, but additional genome sequences are required to study genome-wide and intraspecific variation for dissecting the genetic basis of these important traits and for tailor-designed breeding of this important C4 crop.
We resequenced two sweet and one grain sorghum inbred lines, and identified a set of nearly 1,500 genes differentiating sweet and grain sorghum. These genes fall into ten major metabolic pathways involved in sugar and starch metabolisms, lignin and coumarin biosynthesis, nucleic acid metabolism, stress responses and DNA damage repair. In addition, we uncovered 1,057,018 SNPs, 99,948 indels of 1 to 10 bp in length and 16,487 presence/absence variations as well as 17,111 copy number variations. The majority of the large-effect SNPs, indels and presence/absence variations resided in the genes containing leucine rich repeats, PPR repeats and disease resistance R genes possessing diverse biological functions or under diversifying selection, but were absent in genes that are essential for life.
This is a first report of the identification of genome-wide patterns of genetic variation in sorghum. High-density SNP and indel markers reported here will be a valuable resource for future gene-phenotype studies and the molecular breeding of this important crop and related species.
One novel electrochemical immunosensor was constructed by immobilizing capture antibody of alpha-fetoprotein (AFP Ab1) on a nafion/nanogold-particle modified glassy carbon electrode. With a sandwich immunoassay, one DNA-derived magnetic nanoprobe, simplified as DNA/(ZMPs—HRP-AFP Ab2)n, was employed for the detection of AFP. The fabricated procedure of the proposed biosensor was characterized by cyclic voltammetry and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy. The performance and factors influencing the performance of the biosensor were also evaluated. Under optimal conditions, the developed biosensor exhibited a well-defined electrochemical
behavior toward the reduction of AFP ranging from 0.01 to 200 ng/mL with a detection limit of 4 pg/mL (S/N = 3). The biosensor was applied to the determination of AFP in serum with satisfactory results. It is important to note that the sandwich nanochainmodified electro-immunosensor provided an alternative substrate for the immobilization of other tumor markers.
Studies treating adenocarcinoma of the pancreas with gemcitabine alone or in combination with a doublet have demonstrated modest improvements in survival. Recent reports have suggested that using the triple-drug regimen FOLFIRINOX can substantially extend survival in patients with metastatic disease. We were interested in determining the clinical benefit of another three-drug regimen of gemcitabine, docetaxel and capecitabine (GTX) in patients with advanced pancreatic adenocarcinoma.
Patients and methods
The cases of 154 patients, who received treatment with GTX chemotherapy with histologically confirmed locally advanced or metastatic pancreatic adenocarcinoma, were retrospectively reviewed. All demographic and clinical data were captured including prior therapy, adverse events, treatment response and survival.
One hundred and seventeen metastatic and 37 locally advanced cases of adenocarcinoma of the pancreas were reviewed. Partial responses were noted in 11% of cases, and stable disease was observed in 62% of patients. Responses significantly correlated with toxicity (neutropenia, ALT elevation and hospitalizations). Grade 3 or greater hematologic and non-hematologic toxicities were noted in 41% and 9% of cases, respectively. Overall median survival was 11.6 months. Chemotherapy naïve patients with metastatic and locally advanced disease achieved a median survival of 11.3 and 25.0 months, respectively.
We observe a substantial survival benefit with GTX chemotherapy in our cohort of patients with advanced pancreatic cancer. These findings warrant further investigation of this combination in this patient population.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00280-011-1704-y) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Pancreatic cancer; Chemotherapy; Toxicity; Survival
Testes-specific protease 50 (TSP50) is normally expressed in testes and abnormally expressed in breast cancer, but whether TSP50 is expressed in colorectal carcinoma (CRC) and its clinical significance is unclear. We aimed to detect TSP50 expression in CRC, correlate it with clinicopathological factors, and assess its potential diagnostic and prognostic value.
TSP50 mRNAs and proteins were detected in 7 CRC cell lines and 8 CRC specimens via RT-PCR and Western blot analysis. Immunohistochemical analysis of TSP50, p53 and carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) with tissue microarrays composed of 95 CRCs, 20 colorectal adenomas and 20 normal colorectal tissues were carried out and correlated with clinicopathological characteristics and disease-specific survival for CRC patients. There was no significant correlation between the expression levels of TSP50 and p53 (P = 0.751) or CEA (P = 0.663). Abundant expression of TSP50 protein was found in CRCs (68.4%) while it was poorly expressed in colorectal adenomas and normal tissues (P<0.0001). Thus, CRCs can be distinguished from them with high specificity (92.5%) and positive predictive value (PPV, 95.6%). The survival of CRC patients with high TSP50 expression was significantly shorter than that of the patients with low TSP50 expression (P = 0.010), specifically in patients who had early-stage tumors (stage I and II; P = 0.004). Multivariate Cox regression analysis indicated that high TSP50 expression was a statistically significant independent risk factor (hazard ratio = 2.205, 95% CI = 1.214–4.004, P = 0.009).
Our data demonstrate that TSP50 is a potential effective indicator of poor survival for CRC patients, especially for those with early-stage tumors.
The aggressiveness of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA) is characterized by
its high metastatic potential and lack of effective therapies, which is the
result of a lack of understanding of the mechanisms involved in promoting PDA
metastases. We identified Annexin A2 (ANXA2), a member of the Annexin family of
calcium-dependent phospholipid binding proteins, as a new molecule that promotes
PDA invasion and metastases. We found ANXA2 to be a PDA-associated antigen
recognized by post-treatment sera of patients who demonstrated prolonged
survival following treatment with a PDA-specific vaccine. Cell surface ANXA2
increases with PDA development and progression. Knockdown of ANXA2 expression by
RNA interference or blocking with anti-ANXA2 antibodies inhibits in
vitro invasion of PDA cells. In addition, post-vaccination patient
sera inhibits in vitro invasion of PDA cells, suggesting that
therapeutic anti-ANXA2 antibodies are induced by the vaccine. Furthermore,
cell-surface localization of ANXA2 is tyrosine 23 phosphorylation-dependent; and
tyrosine 23 phosphorylation is required for PDA invasion. We demonstrated that
tyrosine 23 phosphorylation resulting in surface expression of ANXA2 is required
for TGFβ-induced, Rho-mediated epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT),
linking the cellular function of ANXA2 which was previously shown to be
associated with small GTPase-regulated cytoskeletal rearrangements, to the EMT
process in PDA. Finally, using mouse PDA models, we showed that shRNA knock-down
of ANXA2, a mutation at tyrosine 23, or anti-ANXA2 antibodies,
inhibit PDA metastases and prolong mouse survival. Thus, ANXA2 is part of a
novel molecular pathway underlying PDA metastases and a new target for
development of PDA therapeutics.
A novel electrochemical immunosensor for tumor biomarker detection based on three-dimensional, magnetic and electroactive nanoprobes was developed in this study. To fabricate the nanoprobes, negatively charged Fe3O4 nanoparticles (Fe3O4 NPs) and gold nanoparticles (Au NPs) were first loaded on the surface of multiple wall carbon nanotubes (MCNTs) which were functioned with redox-active hemin and cationic polyelectrolyte poly(dimethyldiallylammonium chloride) (PDDA). Using alpha fetoprotein (AFP) as a model analyte, AFP antibody (anti-AFP) was absorbed on the surface of Au NPs, bovine serum albumin (BSA) was then used to block sites against non-specific binding, and finally formed anti-AFP/Au NPs/Fe3O4/hemin/MCNTs named anti-AFP nanoprobes. When the target antigen AFP was present, it interacted with anti-AFP and formed an antigen-antibody complex on the nanoprobe interface. This resulted in a decreased electrochemical signal of hemin for quantitative determination of AFP when immobilized onto the screen-printed working electrode (SPCE). The results showed that the nanoprobe-based electrochemical immunosensor was sensitive to AFP detection at a concentration of 0.1 to 200 ng·mL−1 with a detection limit of 0.04 ng·mL−1, it also demonstrated good selectivity against other interferential substances. The electroactive nanoprobes can be massively prepared, easily immobilized on the SPCE for target detection and rapidly renewed with a magnet. The proposed immunosensor is fast, simple, sensitive, stable, magnet-controlled, nontoxic, label-free and reproducible.
alpha-fetoprotein; nanoprobes; screen-printed carbon electrode; electrochemical immunosensor
A novel magnetic nanoparticle-based electrochemical immunoassay of carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) was designed as a model using CEA antibody-functionalized magnetic beads [DNA/Fe3O4/ZrO2; Fe3O4 (core)/ZrO2 (shell) nano particles (ZMPs)] as immunosensing probes. To design the immunoassay, the CEA antibody and O-phenylenediamine (OPD) were initially immobilized on a chitosan/nano gold composite membrane on a glassy carbon electrode (GCE/CS-nano Au), which was used for CEA recognition. Then, horseradish peroxidase (HRP)-labeled anti-CEA antibodies (HRP-CEA Ab2) were bound to the surface of the synthesized magnetic ZMP nanoparticles as signal tag. Thus, the sandwich-type immune complex could be formed between secondary antibody (Ab2) modified DNA/ZMPs nanochains tagged by HRP and GCE/CS-nano Au. Unlike conventional nanoparticle-based electrochemical immunoassays, the recognition elements of this immunoassay included both electron mediators and enzyme labels, which obviously simplifies the electrochemical measurement process. The sandwich-type immunoassay format was used for online formation of the immunocomplex of CEA captured in the detection cell with an external magnet. The electrochemical signals derived from HRP during the reduction of H2O2 with OPD as electron mediator were measured. The method displayed a high sensitivity for CEA detection in the range of 0.008–200 ng/mL, with a detection limit of 5 pg/mL (estimated at a signal-to-noise ratio of 3). The precision, reproducibility, and stability of the immunoassay were good. The use of the assay was evaluated with clinical serum samples, and the results were in excellent accordance with those obtained using the standard enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) method. Thus, the magnetic nanoparticle-based assay format is a promising approach for clinical applications, and it could be further developed for the detection of other biomarkers in cancer diagnosis.
chitosan/DNA/Fe3O4/ZrO2; magnetic nanoparticle-based electrochemical immunoassay; carcinoembryonic antigen; sandwich electrochemical immunosensor
The incidence of rubella cases in China from 1991 to 2007 was reviewed, and the nucleotide sequences from 123 rubella viruses collected during 1999 to 2007 and 4 viral sequences previously reported from 1979 to 1984 were phylogenetically analyzed. Rubella vaccination was not included in national immunization programs in China before 2007. Changes in endemic viruses were compared with incidences of rubella epidemics. The results showed that rubella epidemics occur approximately every 6 to 8 years (1993/1994, 2001, and 2007), and a shift of disease burden to susceptible young adults was observed. The Chinese rubella virus sequences were categorized into 5 of the 13 rubella virus genotypes, 1a, 1E, 1F, 2A, and 2B; cocirculations of these different genotypes were found in China. In Anhui province, a shift in the predominant genotype from 1F and 2B to 1E coincided with the 2001 rubella epidemic. This shift may have occurred throughout China during 2001 to 2007. This study investigated the genotype distribution of rubella viruses in China over a 28-year period to establish an important genetic baseline in China during its prevaccination era.