Less than 67% of patients with intermediate risk for common bile duct (CBD) stones require therapeutic intervention. It is important to have an accurate, safe, and reliable method for the definitive diagnosis of CBD stones before initiating therapeutic endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP). Few publications detail the diagnostic efficacy of linear echoendoscopy (EUS) for CBD stones.
30 patients with biliary colic, pancreatitis, unexplained derangement of liver function tests, and/or dilated CBD without an identifiable cause were enrolled in the study. When a CBD stone was disclosed by linear EUS, ERCP with stone extraction was performed. Patients who failed ERCP were referred for surgical intervention. If no stone was found by EUS, ERCP would not be performed and patients were followed-up for possible biliary symptoms for up to three months.
The major reason for enrollment was acute pancreatitis. The mean predicted risk for CBD stones was 47% (28–61). Of the 12 patients who were positive for CBD stones by EUS, nine had successful ERCP, one failed ERCP (later treated successfully by surgical intervention) and two were false-positive cases. No procedure-related adverse events were noted. For those 18 patients without evidence of CBD stones by EUS, no false-negative case was noted during the three-month follow-up period. Linear EUS had sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predicted values for the detection of CBD stones of 1, 0.9, 0.8 and 1, respectively.
Linear EUS is safe and efficacious for the diagnosis of occult CBD stones in patients with intermediate risk for the disease.
Linear echoendoscope; Occult common bile duct stones
During normal pregnancy, dramatically increased placental blood flow is critical for fetal growth and survival as well as neonatal birth weights and survivability. This increased blood flow results from angiogenesis, vasodilatation, and vascular remodeling. Locally produced growth factors including fibroblast growth factor2 (FGF2) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGFA) are key regulators of placental endothelial functions including cell proliferation, migration, and vasodilatation. However, the precise signaling mechanisms underlying such regulation in fetoplacental endothelium are less well defined, specifically with regard to the interactions amongst protein kinases, protein phosphatase, and nitric oxide (NO). Recently we and others researchers have obtained solid evidence showing that different signaling mechanisms participate in FGF2- and VEGFA-regulated fetoplacental endothelial cell proliferation and migration as well as NO production. This review will briefly summarize currently available data on signaling mediating fetoplacental angiogenesis with a specific emphasis on protein kinases, ERK1/2, AKT1, and p38 MAPK and protein phosphatases, PPP2 and PPP3.
Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between the methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) C677T excision repair cross-complementation group 1 (ERCC1) genetic polymorphisms and the clinical efficacy of gemcitabine-based chemotherapy in advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Methods: A total of 135 chemonaive patients with unresectable advanced NSCLC were treated with gemcitabine/platinum regimens. The polymorphisms of MTHFR C677T, ERCC1 C8092A, and ERCC1 C118T were genotyped using the TaqMan methods. Results: The overall response rate was 28.9%. Patients with MTHFR CC genotype had a higher rate of objective response than patients with variant genotype (TT or CT) (41.2% versus 19.1%, P=0.01). Median time to progression (TTP) of patients with MTHFR CC genotype was longer than that of patients with variant genotype (7.6 months versus 5.0 months, P=0.003). No significant associations were obtained between ERCC1 C118T and C8092A polymorphisms and both response and survival. Conclusions: Our data suggest the value of MTHFR C677T polymorphism as a possible predictive marker of response and TTP in advanced NSCLC patients treated with gemcitabine/platinum.
Non-small cell lung cancer; Single nucleotide polymorphism; Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase; Gemcitabine; Excision repair cross-complementation group 1
Rituximab is the first line drug to treat non Hodgkin’s lymphoma (B-NHL) alone or in combination with chemotherapy. However, 30–40% of B-NHL patients are unresponsive to rituximab or resistant after therapy. Human phosphatidylethanolamine-binding protein 4 (hPEBP4) is a novel member of PEBP family and functions as an anti-apoptotic molecule. In this study, we found hPEBP4 to be expressed in up to 90% of B-cell lymphoma patients, but in only 16.7% of normal lymph nodes. Interestingly, hPEBP4 overexpression inhibited rituximab-mediated complement dependent cytotoxicity (R-CDC) and antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity (ADCC) in B-NHL cells while downregulation of hPEBP4 augmented the therapeutic efficacy of rituximab both in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, hPEBP4 silencing sensitized the primary B-acute lymphocytic leukemia (B-ALL) cells to R-CDC. During rituximab-mediated complement dependent cytotoxicity, hPEBP4 was recruited to the cell membrane in a PE-binding domain dependent manner and inhibited R-CDC induced calcium flux and reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation. These events contributed to the decrease of cell death induced by R-CDC in B-cell lymphomas. Meanwhile, hPEBP4 knockdown potentiated the chemosensitization of the rituximab in B-cell lymphoma cells by regulating the expression of Bcl-xl, Cycline E, p21waf/cip1 and p53 and the activation of caspase-3 and caspase-9. Considering that hPEBP4 conferred cellular resistance to rituximab treatment and was preferentially expressed in lymphoma tissue, it could be a potential valuable target for adjuvant therapy for B-cell lymphoma.
1. CYP2S1 is an evolutionarily conserved, mainly extra-hepatic member of the CYP2 family and proposed to be regulated by the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR).
2. The present study explores AhR's regulation of CYP2S1 in male Sprague Dawley rats using PCB126 (3,3',4,4',5-pentachlorobiphenyl), the most potent AhR agonist among the PCBs. Additionally, CYP2S1 expression was examined after treatments with the classic CYP-inducers β-naphthoflavone (β-NF, AhR activator), phenobarbital (PB, CAR activator) and dexamethasone (Dex, PXR activator). CYP2S1 and CYP1A1/2, CYP1B1, CYP2B and CYP3A mRNAs were measured in liver, lung, spleen, stomach, kidney, and thymus at different time points.
3. Constitutive CYP2S1 was expressed at comparable levels to other CYPs with the highest expression levels in stomach, kidney and lung. CYP2S1 mRNA was only non-significantly elevated by β-NF in liver tissues. PCB126 did not increase CYP2S1 mRNA in any organ and at any time point examined despite a significant induction of CYP1 genes. PCB126 reduced CYP2S1 mRNA by 40% (not significant) from the 7th post-exposure day in thymus. PB and Dex had no effect on CYP2S1 mRNA levels.
4. These observations show that in this model CYP2S1 is not, or only weakly, regulated by AhR and not induced by CAR or PXR activators.
The lack of reliable methods to efficiently isolate and propagate stem cell populations is a significant obstacle to the advancement of cell-based therapies for human diseases. One isolation technique is based on efflux of the fluorophore Hoechst 33342. Using fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS), a sub-population containing adult stem cells has been identified in a multitude of tissues in every mammalian species examined. These rare cells are referred to as the ‘side population’ or SP due to a distinctive FACS profile that results from weak staining by Hoechst dye. Although the SP contains multi-potent cells capable of differentiating toward hematopoietic and mesenchymal lineages; there is currently no method to efficiently expand them. Here, we describe a spinner-flask culture system containing C2C12 myoblasts attached to spherical microcarriers that act to support the growth of non-adherent, post-natal murine skeletal muscle and bone marrow SP cells. Using FACS and hemocytometry, we show expansion of unfractionated EGFP+ SP cells over 6 wks. A significant number of these cells retain characteristics of freshly-isolated, unfractionated SP cells with respect to protein expression and dye efflux capacity. Expansion of the SP will permit further study of these heterogeneous cells and determine their therapeutic potential for regenerative and reparative therapies.
Patients with Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) are particularly vulnerable to development of Diabetic nephropathy (DN) leading to End Stage Renal Disease. Hence a better understanding of the factors affecting kidney disease progression in T1D is urgently needed. In recent years microRNAs have emerged as important post-transcriptional regulators of gene expression in many different health conditions. We hypothesized that urinary microRNA profile of patients will differ in the different stages of diabetic renal disease.
Methods and Findings
We studied urine microRNA profiles with qPCR in 40 T1D with >20 year follow up 10 who never developed renal disease (N) matched against 10 patients who went on to develop overt nephropathy (DN), 10 patients with intermittent microalbuminuria (IMA) matched against 10 patients with persistent (PMA) microalbuminuria. A Bayesian procedure was used to normalize and convert raw signals to expression ratios. We applied formal statistical techniques to translate fold changes to profiles of microRNA targets which were then used to make inferences about biological pathways in the Gene Ontology and REACTOME structured vocabularies. A total of 27 microRNAs were found to be present at significantly different levels in different stages of untreated nephropathy. These microRNAs mapped to overlapping pathways pertaining to growth factor signaling and renal fibrosis known to be targeted in diabetic kidney disease.
Urinary microRNA profiles differ across the different stages of diabetic nephropathy. Previous work using experimental, clinical chemistry or biopsy samples has demonstrated differential expression of many of these microRNAs in a variety of chronic renal conditions and diabetes. Combining expression ratios of microRNAs with formal inferences about their predicted mRNA targets and associated biological pathways may yield useful markers for early diagnosis and risk stratification of DN in T1D by inferring the alteration of renal molecular processes.
Meningiomas are central nervous system tumors that originate from the meningeal coverings of the brain and spinal cord. Most meningiomas are pathologically benign or atypical, but 3–5% display malignant features. Despite previous studies on benign and atypical meningiomas, the key molecular pathways involved in malignant transformation remain to be determined, as does the extent of epigenetic alteration in malignant meningiomas. In this study, we explored the landscape of DNA methylation in ten benign, five atypical and four malignant meningiomas. Compared to the benign tumors, the atypical and malignant meningiomas demonstrate increased global DNA hypomethylation. Clustering analysis readily separates malignant from atypical and benign tumors, implicating that DNA methylation patterns may serve as diagnostic biomarkers for malignancy. Genes with hypermethylated CpG islands in malignant meningiomas (such as HOXA6 and HOXA9) tend to coincide with the binding sites of polycomb repressive complexes (PRC) in early developmental stages. Most genes with hypermethylated CpG islands at promoters are suppressed in malignant and benign meningiomas, suggesting the switching of gene silencing machinery from PRC binding to DNA methylation in malignant meningiomas. One exception is the MAL2 gene that is highly expressed in benign group and silenced in malignant group, representing de novo gene silencing induced by DNA methylation. In summary, our results suggest that malignant meningiomas have distinct DNA methylation patterns compared to their benign and atypical counterparts, and that the differentially methylated genes may serve as diagnostic biomarkers or candidate causal genes for malignant transformation.
China produces the greatest amount of propolis but there is still lack of basic studies on its pharmacological mechanisms. Our previous study found that ethanol extract from Chinese propolis (EECP) exerted excellent anti-inflammatory effects in vivo but mechanisms of action were elusive. To further clarify the possible mechanisms underlying the anti-inflammatory effects of Chinese propolis (poplar type), we utilized EECP to analyze its chemical composition and evaluated its potential anti-inflammatory effects in vitro. High-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) profile indicated that EECP contained abundant flavonoids, including rutin, myricetin, quercetin, kaempferol, apigenin, pinocembrin, chrysin, and galangin. Next we found that EECP could significantly inhibit the production of NO, IL-1β, and IL-6 in lipopolysaccharide- (LPS-) stimulated RAW 264.7 cells and suppress mRNA expression of iNOS, IL-1β, and IL-6 in a time- and dose-dependent manner. Furthermore, we found that EECP could suppress the phosphorylation of IκBα and AP-1 but did not affect IκBα's degradation. In addition, using a reporter assay, we found that EECP could block the activation of NF-κB in TNF-α-stimulated HEK 293T cells. Our findings give new insights for understanding the mechanisms involved in the anti-inflammatory effects by Chinese propolis and provide additional references for using propolis in alternative and complementary therapies.
Exome sequencing has identified the causes of several Mendelian diseases, although it has rarely been used in a clinical setting to diagnose the genetic cause of an idiopathic disorder in a single patient. We performed exome sequencing on a pedigree with several members affected with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), in an effort to identify candidate variants predisposing to this complex disease. While we did identify some rare variants that might predispose to ADHD, we have not yet proven the causality for any of them. However, over the course of the study, one subject was discovered to have idiopathic hemolytic anemia (IHA), which was suspected to be genetic in origin. Analysis of this subject’s exome readily identified two rare non-synonymous mutations in PKLR gene as the most likely cause of the IHA, although these two mutations had not been documented before in a single individual. We further confirmed the deficiency by functional biochemical testing, consistent with a diagnosis of red blood cell pyruvate kinase deficiency. Our study implies that exome and genome sequencing will certainly reveal additional rare variation causative for even well-studied classical Mendelian diseases, while also revealing variants that might play a role in complex diseases. Furthermore, our study has clinical and ethical implications for exome and genome sequencing in a research setting; how to handle unrelated findings of clinical significance, in the context of originally planned complex disease research, remains a largely uncharted area for clinicians and researchers.
AIM: To investigate the impact of renal and graft function on post-transplant hyperlipidemia (PTHL) in living donor liver transplantation (LDLT).
METHODS: A total of 115 adult patients undergoing LDLT from January 2007 to May 2009 at a single center were enrolled. Data were collected and analyzed by the China Liver Transplant Registry retrospectively. PTHL was defined as serum triglycerides ≥ 150 mg/dL or serum cholesterol ≥ 200 mg/dL or the need for pharmacologic treatment at the sixth month after LDLT. Early renal dysfunction (ERD) was defined as serum creatinine ≥ 2 mg/dL and/or the need for renal replacement therapy in the first post-transplant week.
RESULTS: In 115 eligible patients, the incidence of PTHL was 24.3%. Recipients with PTHL showed a higher incidence of post-transplant cardiovascular events compared to those without PTHL (17.9% vs 4.6%, P = 0.037). Serum creatinine showed significant positive correlations with total serum triglycerides, both at post-transplant month 1 and 3 (P < 0.01). Patients with ERD had much higher pre-transplant serum creatinine levels (P < 0.001) and longer duration of pre-transplant renal insufficiency (P < 0.001) than those without ERD. Pre-transplant serum creatinine, graft-to-recipient weight ratio, graft volume/standard liver volume ratio, body mass index (BMI) and ERD were identified as risk factors for PTHL by univariate analysis. Furthermore, ERD [odds ratio (OR) = 9.593, P < 0.001] and BMI (OR = 6.358, P = 0.002) were identified as independent risk factors for PTHL by multivariate analysis.
CONCLUSION: Renal function is closely associated with the development of PTHL in LDLT. Post-transplant renal dysfunction, which mainly results from pre-transplant renal insufficiency, contributes to PTHL.
Hyperlipidemia; Liver transplantation; Renal insufficiency; Graft function; Risk factors; Prognosis
Five populations segregated in isogenic backgrounds and three sets of near isogenic lines (NILs) overlapping in a 362.3-kb region covering heading date gene Hd1 were developed from the indica rice cross Zhenshan97 (ZS97)/Milyang 46 (MY46). They were used to analyze the effects of Hd1 on heading date, plant height and yield traits. In a background of the parental mixtures, the photoperiod-sensitive allele derived from ZS97 functioned in promoting and delaying flowering in the natural short-day and long-day conditions, respectively. In the background of ZS97, no response to the photoperiod was observed, whereas the photoperiod-insensitive allele derived from MY46 functioned in delaying flowering, increasing plant height, and enhancing grain productivity. The additive effects estimated in two NIL sets were 6.14 and 6.14 d for heading date, 4.46 and 5.55 cm for plant height, 10.82 and 11.54 for the number of spikelets per panicle, 6.82 and 8.00 for the number of grains per panicle, and 2.16 and 2.23 g for grain yield per plant, which explained 94.1% and 96.3%, 70.5% and 84.8%, 52.4% and 55.2%, 28.9% and 39.2%, and 36.5% and 26.9% of the phenotypic variances, respectively. Since the photoperiod-insensitive allele of Hd1 confers a long vegetative phase, it is a good candidate for breeding rice varieties with high yielding potential for low latitudes.
Human plasma has long been a rich source for biomarker discovery. It has recently become clear that plasma RNA molecules, such as microRNA, in addition to proteins are common and can serve as biomarkers. Surveying human plasma for microRNA biomarkers using next generation sequencing technology, we observed that a significant fraction of the circulating RNA appear to originate from exogenous species. With careful analysis of sequence error statistics and other controls, we demonstrated that there is a wide range of RNA from many different organisms, including bacteria and fungi as well as from other species. These RNAs may be associated with protein, lipid or other molecules protecting them from RNase activity in plasma. Some of these RNAs are detected in intracellular complexes and may be able to influence cellular activities under in
vitro conditions. These findings raise the possibility that plasma RNAs of exogenous origin may serve as signaling molecules mediating for example the human-microbiome interaction and may affect and/or indicate the state of human health.
Alexithymia, characterized by difficulties in identifying and describing feelings, is highly indicative of a broad range of psychiatric disorders. Several studies have also discovered the response inhibition ability impairment in alexithymia. However, few studies on alexithymic individuals have specifically examined how emotional context modulates response inhibition procedure. In order to investigate emotion cognition interaction in alexithymia, we analyzed the spatiao-temporal features of such emotional response inhibition by the approaches of event-related potentials and neural source-localization.
The study participants included 15 subjects with high alexithymia scores on the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (alexithymic group) and 15 matched subjects with low alexithymia scores (control group). Subjects were instructed to perform a modified emotional Go/Nogo task while their continuous electroencephalography activities were synchronously recorded. The task includes 3 categories of emotional contexts (positive, negative and neutral) and 2 letters (“M” and “W”) centered in the screen. Participants were told to complete go and nogo actions based on the letters. We tested the influence of alexithymia in this emotional Go/Nogo task both in behavioral level and related neural activities of N2 and P3 ERP components.
We found that negatively valenced context elicited larger central P3 amplitudes of the Nogo–Go difference wave in the alexithymic group than in the control group. Furthermore, source-localization analyses implicated the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) as the neural generator of the Nogo-P3.
These findings suggest that difficulties in identifying feelings, particularly in negative emotions, is a major feature of alexithymia, and the ACC plays a critical role in emotion-modulated response inhibition related to alexithymia.
Nanoscale real-time molecular sensing requires large signal enhancement, small background, short detection time and high spectral resolution. We demonstrate a new vibrational spectroscopic technique which satisfies all of these conditions. This time-resolved surface-enhanced coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (tr-SECARS) spectroscopy is used to detect hydrogen-bonded molecular complexes of pyridine with water in the near field of gold nanoparticles with large signal enhancement and a fraction of a second collection time. Optimal spectral width and time delays of ultrashort laser pulses suppress the surface-enhanced non-resonant background. Time-resolved signals increase the spectral resolution which is limited by the width of the probe pulse and allow measuring nanoscale vibrational dephasing dynamics. This technique combined with quantum chemistry simulations may be used for the investigation of complex mixtures at the nanoscale and surface environment of artificial nanostructures and biological systems.
Cognitive change is prevalent in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), but still lack a widely accepted and sensitive screening method. In this study, we try to find a sensitive screening battery for detecting subtle cognitive deficits in patients with ALS.
Eighty consecutive ALS patients and 57 matched normal controls underwent the Mini-Mental Status Examination (MMSE), the verbal fluency test (VFT), the Stroop Color Word Interference Test (CWT), and the prospective memory (PM) tests, including event-based (EBPM) and time-based (TBPM).
The patients did not differ from the controls in the MMSE, the VFT and the CWT. By contrast, statistically significant differences were found in the PM tests (EBPM: P=0.043; TBPM: P<0.001). More interestingly, TBPM was more sensitive than EBPM in the early-phase patients.
Prefrontal lobar dysfunction does exist among ALS patients and may spread from the medial to the lateral region. The PM tests seem more sensitive in ALS patients with frontotemporal dysfunction than are the classical cognitive measures.
Quiescent cells are considered to be dormant. However, recent studies suggest that quiescent fibroblasts possess active metabolic profile and certain functional characteristics. We previously observed that serum-starved quiescent fibroblasts respond to proinflammatory stimuli by robust expression of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), which declines after the quiescent fibroblasts are driven to proliferation. In this study, we elucidated the underlying signaling and transcriptional mechanism and identified by microarray genes with similar differential expression. By using pharmacological inhibitors coupled with gene silencing, we uncovered the key role of protein kinase C δ (PKCδ) and extracellular signal regulated protein kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) signaling in mediating COX-2 expression in quiescent cells. Surprisingly, COX-2 expression in proliferative cells was not blocked by PKCδ or ERK1/2 inhibitors due to intrinsic inhibition of PKCδ and ERK1/2 in proliferative cells. Restrained COX-2 transcription in proliferative cells was attributable to reduced NF-κB binding. Microarray analysis identified 35 genes whose expressions were more robust in quiescent than in proliferative cells. A majority of those genes belong to proinflammatory cytokines, chemokines, adhesive molecules and metalloproteinases, which require NF-κB for transcription. Quiescent fibroblasts had a higher migratory activity than proliferative fibroblasts as determined by the transwell assay. Selective COX-2 inhibition reduced migration which was restored by prostaglandin E2. As COX-2 and inflammatory mediators induce DNA oxidation, we measured 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine (8-OHdG) in quiescent vs. proliferative fibroblasts. PMA-induced 8-OHdG accumulation was significantly higher in quiescent than in proliferative fibroblasts. These findings indicate that quiescent fibroblasts (and probably other quiescent cells) are at the forefront in mounting inflammatory responses through expression of an array of proinflammatory genes via the PKCδ/ERK1/2 signaling pathway.
RlmL, a 23S rRNA m2G2445 methyltransferase from Escherichia coli, was expressed, purified and crystallized, and crystals diffracted to 2.2 Å.
The RlmL (YcbY) protein in Escherichia coli is an rRNA methyltransferase that is specific for m2G2445 modification of 23S RNA. The rlmL gene was cloned into the expression vector pET28a and expressed in the host E. coli strain BL21 (DE3). Recombinant protein with a six-histidine tag was purified by Ni2+-affinity chromatography followed by gel filtration. Crystals were grown using the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method and a detergent was used as an additive to improve diffraction quality. The final crystals diffracted to 2.2 Å resolution. The crystals belonged to space group P21, with unit-cell parameters a = 73.6, b = 140.8, c = 102.9 Å, β = 102.3°. The crystal has a most probable solvent content of 62.8% with two molecules in the asymmetric unit.
RlmL; rRNA methyltransferases; Echerichia coli
Homeostasis of selenium (Se), a critical antioxidant incorporated into amino acids and enzymes, is disrupted by exposure to aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) agonists. Here we examined the importance of dietary Se in preventing the toxicity of the most toxic polychlorinated biphenyl congener, 3,3′,4,4′,5-pentachlorobiphenyl (PCB 126), a potent AhR agonist. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were fed a modified AIN-93 diet with differing dietary Se levels (0.02, 0.2, and 2 ppm). Following 3 weeks of acclimatization, rats from each dietary group were given a single ip injection of corn oil (vehicle), 0.2, 1, or 5 μmol/kg body weight PCB 126, followed 2 weeks later by euthanasia. PCB exposure caused dose-dependent increases in liver weight and at the highest PCB 126 dose decreases in whole body weight gains. Hepatic cytochrome P-450 (CYP1A1) activity was significantly increased even at the lowest dose of PCB 126, indicating potent AhR activation. PCB exposure diminished hepatic Se levels in a dose-dependent manner, and this was accompanied by diminished Se-dependent glutathione peroxidase activity. Both these effects were partially mitigated by Se supplementation. Conversely, thioredoxin (Trx) reductase activity and Trx oxidation state, although significantly diminished in the lowest dietary Se groups, were not affected by PCB exposure. In addition, PCB 126–induced changes in hepatic copper, iron, manganese, and zinc were observed. These results demonstrate that supplemental dietary Se was not able to completely prevent the toxicity caused by PCB 126 but was able to increase moderately the levels of several key antioxidants, thereby maintaining them roughly at normal levels.
polychlorinated biphenyls; glutathione; glutathione peroxidase; redox status; selenium; copper; zinc; superoxide dismutase; thioredoxin; hepatotoxicity
A number of agents are now available for use in protecting against ionizing radiation. These radiation-protective agents, however, have many adverse effects. Efforts have been made to develop new radiation-protective agents for medical application. Here, we investigated whether a compound, polyethylenimine (PEI), which activates Toll-like receptor 5 (TLR5)-mediated NF-kB signaling pathways, could have an anti-radiation effect on a mouse model. First, a cell-based screening model for an agonist of TLR5-mediated NF-kB pathway was established and then validated by activation of TLR5-mediated NF-kB luciferase reporter activity with a known TLR5 agonist, flagellin. We found that PEI induced dose-dependent activation of the TLR5-mediated NF-kB pathway, indicating that PEI is indeed a TLR5 agonist. Furthermore, the anti-radiation effect of polyethylenimine was assessed using a γ-ray total body irradiation (TBI) mouse model. Compared with the irradiation control, both survival time and survival rate were significantly improved in mice that received either a low dose of polyethylenimine (P= 0.019) or a high dose of polyethylenimine (P< 0.001). We also observed a positive correlation between animal body weight and survival time in mice that received a low dose of polyethylenimine, a high dose of polyethylenimine and amifostine, over a period of 30 days, r= 0.42 (P< 0.02), 0.72 (P< 0.0001) and 0.95 (P< 0.0001), respectively, while a negative correlation between animal body weight and survival time was observed in the irradiation control (r= –0.89; P< 0.0001). These results indicate that polyethylenimine is a new TLR5 agonist with potential application in offering protection for patients receiving radiotherapy or in radiation-related accidents.
Polyethylenimine (PEI); NF-κB; radiation protection; Toll-like receptor 5 (TLR5); total body irradiation (TBI)
AIM: To study the effect of H2 gas on liver injury in massive hepatectomy using the Intermittent Pringle maneuver in swine.
METHODS: Male Bama pigs (n = 14) treated with ketamine hydrochloride and Sumianxin II as induction drugs followed by inhalation anesthesia with 2% isoflurane, underwent 70% hepatotectomy with loss of bleeding less than 50 mL, and with hepatic pedicle occlusion for 20 min, were divided into two groups: Hydrogen-group (n = 7), the pigs with inhalation of 2% hydrogen by the tracheal intubation during major hepatotectomy; Contrast-group (n = 7), underwent 70% hepatotectomy without inhalation of hydrogen. Hemodynamic changes and plasma concentrations of alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), hyaluronic acid (HA), tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin-6 (IL-6), and malondialdehyde (MDA) in liver tissue were measured at pre-operation, post-hepatotectomy (PH) 1 h and 3 h. The apoptosis and proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) expression in liver remnant were evaluated at PH 3 h. Then we compared the two groups by these marks to evaluate the effect of the hydrogen in the liver injury during major hepatotectomy with the Pringle Maneuver in the swine.
RESULTS: There were no significant differences in body weight, blood loss and removal liver weight between the two groups. There was no significant difference in changes of portal vein pressure between two groups at pre-operation, PH 30 min, but in hydrogen gas treated-group it slightly decrease and lower than its in Contrast-group at PH 3 h, although there were no significant difference (P = 0.655). ALT and AST in Hydrogen-group was significantly lower comparing to Contrast-group (P = 0.036, P = 0.011, vs P = 0.032, P = 0.013) at PH 1 h and 3 h, although the two groups all increased. The MDA level increased between the two group at PH 1 h and 3 h. In the hydrogen gas treated-group, the MDA level was not significantly significant at pre-operation and significantly low at PH 1 h and 3 h comparing to Contrast-group (P = 0.0005, P = 0.0004). In Hydrogen-group, the HA level was also significantly low to Contrast-group (P = 0.0005, P = 0.0005) although the two groups all increased at PH 1 h and 3 h. The expression of cluster of differentiation molecule 31 molecules Hydrogen-group was low to Contrast-group. However, PCNA index (%) was not statistically significant between the two groups (P = 0.802). Microphotometric evaluation of apoptotic index (AI) in terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP-biotin nick end labeling-stained tissue after hepatotectomy for 3h, the AI% level in the hydrogen was significantly low to Contrast-group (P = 0.012). There were no significant difference between Hydrogen-group and Contrast-group at pre-operation (P = 0.653, P = 0.423), but after massive hepatotectomy, the TNF-α and IL-6 levels increase, and its in Hydrogen-group was significantly low compared with Contrast-group (P = 0.022, P = 0.013, vs P = 0.016, P = 0.012), respectively. Hydrogen-gas inhalation reduce levels of these markers and relieved morphological liver injury and apoptosis.
CONCLUSION: H2 gas attenuates markedly ischemia and portal hyperperfusion injury in pigs with massive hepatotectomy, possibly by the reduction of inflammation and oxidative stress, maybe a potential agent for treatment in clinic.
Massive hepatotectomy; Hydrogen gas; Anti-oxidant; Hyperperfusion; Malondialdehyde; Oxidative stress
Data from human genetics, histopathology, and animal models reveal a major role for the complement system in the development of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Genetic variations in the complement factor H (CFH) gene are associated with an elevated risk of AMD. In this study we sought to determine whether eyes from donors with a high risk genotype (homozygosity for the histidine allele at codon 402) exhibit altered levels of membrane attack complex (MAC) in the choroid, compared to eyes with a low risk genotype (homozygosity for tyrosine). Proteins were extracted from the RPE/choroid of 18 donors (10 low risk and 8 high risk) and levels of MAC were assessed using an ELISA assay. Eyes from donors homozygous for the histidine allele showed 69% higher levels of MAC than those homozygous for the tyrosine allele (p<0.05), independent of whether the eyes showed signs of early AMD. Our results provide evidence that high-risk CFH genotypes may affect AMD risk by increased deposition of MAC around the aging choriocapillaris.
For more than thirty years, the dog has been used as a model for human diseases. Despite efforts made to develop canine embryonic stem cells, success has been elusive. Here, we report the generation of canine induced pluripotent stem cells (ciPSCs) from canine adult fibroblasts, which we accomplished by introducing human OCT4, SOX2, c-MYC, and KLF4. The ciPSCs expressed critical pluripotency markers and showed evidence of silencing the viral vectors and normal karyotypes. Microsatellite analysis indicated that the ciPSCs showed the same profile as the donor fibroblasts but differed from cells taken from other dogs. Under culture conditions favoring differentiation, the ciPSCs could form cell derivatives from the ectoderm, mesoderm, and endoderm. Further, the ciPSCs required leukemia inhibitory factor and basic fibroblast growth factor to survive, proliferate, and maintain pluripotency. Our results demonstrate an efficient method for deriving canine pluripotent stem cells, providing a powerful platform for the development of new models for regenerative medicine, as well as for the study of the onset, progression, and treatment of human and canine genetic diseases.