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1.  A systems genetics study of swine illustrates mechanisms underlying human phenotypic traits 
BMC Genomics  2015;16(1):88.
The pig, which shares greater similarities with human than with mouse, is important for agriculture and for studying human diseases. However, similarities in the genetic architecture and molecular regulations underlying phenotypic variations in humans and swine have not been systematically assessed.
We systematically surveyed ~500 F2 pigs genetically and phenotypically. By comparing candidates for anemia traits identified in swine genome-wide SNP association and human genome-wide association studies (GWAS), we showed that both sets of candidates are related to the biological process “cellular lipid metabolism” in liver. Human height is a complex heritable trait; by integrating genome-wide SNP data and human adipose Bayesian causal network, which closely represents bone transcriptional regulations, we identified PLAG1 as a causal gene for limb bone length. This finding is consistent with GWAS findings for human height and supports the common genetic architecture between swine and humans. By leveraging a human protein-protein interaction network, we identified two putative candidate causal genes TGFB3 and DAB2IP and the known regulators MESP1 and MESP2 as responsible for the variation in rib number and identified the potential underlying molecular mechanisms. In mice, knockout of Tgfb3 and Tgfb2 together decreases rib number.
Our findings show that integrative network analyses reveal causal regulators underlying the genetic association of complex traits in swine and that these causal regulators have similar effects in humans. Thus, swine are a potentially good animal model for studying some complex human traits that are not under intense selection.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12864-015-1240-y) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4336704
Systems genetics; Swine model; Complex human traits
2.  Baicalein Inhibits Progression of Gallbladder Cancer Cells by Downregulating ZFX 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(1):e0114851.
Baicalein, a widely used Chinese herbal medicine, has multiple pharmacological activities. However, the precise mechanisms of the anti-proliferation and anti-metastatic effects of baicalein on gallbladder cancer (GBC) remain poorly understood. Therefore, the aim of this study was to assess the anti-proliferation and anti-metastatic effects of baicalein and the related mechanism(s) on GBC. In the present study, we found that treatment with baicalein induced a significant inhibitory effect on proliferation and promoted apoptosis in GBC-SD and SGC996 cells, two widely used gallbladder cancer cell lines. Additionally, treatment with baicalein inhibited the metastasis of GBC cells. Moreover, we demonstrated for the first time that baicalein inhibited GBC cell growth and metastasis via down-regulation of the expression level of Zinc finger protein X-linked (ZFX). In conclusion, our studies suggest that baicalein may be a potential phytochemical flavonoid for therapeutics of GBC and ZFX may serve as a molecular marker or predictive target for GBC.
PMCID: PMC4305301  PMID: 25617627
3.  FastGCN: A GPU Accelerated Tool for Fast Gene Co-Expression Networks 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(1):e0116776.
Gene co-expression networks comprise one type of valuable biological networks. Many methods and tools have been published to construct gene co-expression networks; however, most of these tools and methods are inconvenient and time consuming for large datasets. We have developed a user-friendly, accelerated and optimized tool for constructing gene co-expression networks that can fully harness the parallel nature of GPU (Graphic Processing Unit) architectures. Genetic entropies were exploited to filter out genes with no or small expression changes in the raw data preprocessing step. Pearson correlation coefficients were then calculated. After that, we normalized these coefficients and employed the False Discovery Rate to control the multiple tests. At last, modules identification was conducted to construct the co-expression networks. All of these calculations were implemented on a GPU. We also compressed the coefficient matrix to save space. We compared the performance of the GPU implementation with those of multi-core CPU implementations with 16 CPU threads, single-thread C/C++ implementation and single-thread R implementation. Our results show that GPU implementation largely outperforms single-thread C/C++ implementation and single-thread R implementation, and GPU implementation outperforms multi-core CPU implementation when the number of genes increases. With the test dataset containing 16,000 genes and 590 individuals, we can achieve greater than 63 times the speed using a GPU implementation compared with a single-thread R implementation when 50 percent of genes were filtered out and about 80 times the speed when no genes were filtered out.
PMCID: PMC4300192  PMID: 25602758
4.  Increasing expression of substance P and calcitonin gene-related peptide in synovial tissue and fluid contribute to the progress of arthritis in developmental dysplasia of the hip 
Developmental dysplasia of the hip (DDH) is a common musculoskeletal disorder that has pain and loss of joint function as major pathological features. In the present study, we explored the mechanisms of possible involvement and regulation of substance P (SP) and calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) in the pathological and inflammatory processes of arthritis in DDH.
Blood, synovial tissue and fluid samples were collected from patients diagnosed with different severities of DDH and from patients with femoral neck fracture. Levels of SP, CGRP and inflammatory cytokines in synovium and synovial fluid (SF) in the different groups were evaluated by immunohistochemistry, real-time PCR and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Correlations between neuropeptides and inflammatory cytokines in SF were evaluated by partial correlation analysis. The proinflammatory effects of SP and CGRP on synoviocytes obtained from patients with moderate DDH were investigated in vitro by real-time PCR and ELISA. The mechanisms of those effects were evaluated by Western blot analysis and nuclear factor κ-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells (NF-κB) DNA binding assay.
Significantly increased levels of neuropeptides and inflammatory cytokines were observed in synovium and SF from patients in the severe DDH group compared with the moderate DDH and control groups. In moderate DDH samples, SP in SF correlated with tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, and CGRP in SF correlated with TNF-α and interleukin (IL)-10. In the severe DDH group, SP in SF correlated with interleukin (IL)-1β, TNF-α and IL-10. CGRP in SF correlated with TNF-α. Additionally, SP might have had obvious proinflammatory effects on synoviocytes through the activation of NF-κB.
The upregulation of SP and CGRP in synovium and SF might participate in the inflammatory process of arthritis in DDH. The activation of the NF-κB pathway seems indispensable in the proinflammatory effect of SP on synoviocytes. This original discovery may indicate a potential clinical drug target and the development of innovative therapies for DDH.
PMCID: PMC4320827  PMID: 25578529
5.  Integrative Analysis of DNA Methylation and Gene Expression Data Identifies EPAS1 as a Key Regulator of COPD 
PLoS Genetics  2015;11(1):e1004898.
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a complex disease. Genetic, epigenetic, and environmental factors are known to contribute to COPD risk and disease progression. Therefore we developed a systematic approach to identify key regulators of COPD that integrates genome-wide DNA methylation, gene expression, and phenotype data in lung tissue from COPD and control samples. Our integrative analysis identified 126 key regulators of COPD. We identified EPAS1 as the only key regulator whose downstream genes significantly overlapped with multiple genes sets associated with COPD disease severity. EPAS1 is distinct in comparison with other key regulators in terms of methylation profile and downstream target genes. Genes predicted to be regulated by EPAS1 were enriched for biological processes including signaling, cell communications, and system development. We confirmed that EPAS1 protein levels are lower in human COPD lung tissue compared to non-disease controls and that Epas1 gene expression is reduced in mice chronically exposed to cigarette smoke. As EPAS1 downstream genes were significantly enriched for hypoxia responsive genes in endothelial cells, we tested EPAS1 function in human endothelial cells. EPAS1 knockdown by siRNA in endothelial cells impacted genes that significantly overlapped with EPAS1 downstream genes in lung tissue including hypoxia responsive genes, and genes associated with emphysema severity. Our first integrative analysis of genome-wide DNA methylation and gene expression profiles illustrates that not only does DNA methylation play a ‘causal’ role in the molecular pathophysiology of COPD, but it can be leveraged to directly identify novel key mediators of this pathophysiology.
Author Summary
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a common lung disease. It is the fourth leading cause of death in the world and is expected to be the third by 2020. COPD is a heterogeneous and complex disease consisting of obstruction in the small airways, emphysema, and chronic bronchitis. COPD is generally caused by exposure to noxious particles or gases, most commonly from cigarette smoking. However, only 20–25% of smokers develop clinically significant airflow obstruction. Smoking is known to cause epigenetic changes in lung tissues. Thus, genetics, epigenetic, and their interaction with environmental factors play an important role in COPD pathogenesis and progression. Currently, there are no therapeutics that can reverse COPD progression. In order to identify new targets that may lead to the development of therapeutics for curing COPD, we developed a systematic approach to identify key regulators of COPD that integrates genome-wide DNA methylation, gene expression, and phenotype data in lung tissue from COPD and control samples. Our integrative analysis identified 126 key regulators of COPD. We identified EPAS1 as the only key regulator whose downstream genes significantly overlapped with multiple genes sets associated with COPD disease severity.
PMCID: PMC4287352  PMID: 25569234
6.  Efficient responses to host and bacterial signals during Vibrio cholerae colonization 
Gut Microbes  2013;5(1):120-128.
Vibrio cholerae, the microorganism responsible for the diarrheal disease cholera, is able to sense and respond to a variety of changing stimuli in both its aquatic and human gastrointestinal environments. Here we present a review of research efforts aimed toward understanding the signals this organism senses in the human host. V. cholerae’s ability to sense and respond to temperature and pH, bile, osmolarity, oxygen and catabolite levels, nitric oxide, and mucus, as well as the quorum sensing signals produced in response to these factors will be discussed. We also review the known quorum sensing regulatory pathways and discuss their importance with regard to the regulation of virulence and colonization during infection.
PMCID: PMC4049929  PMID: 24256715
V. cholerae; mucus; bile; pH; quorum sensing; virulence; colonization; environmental signals
7.  TCF-1 and LEF-1 act upstream of Th-POK to promote CD4+ T cell lineage choice and cooperate with Runx3 to silence the Cd4 gene in CD8+ T cells 
Nature immunology  2014;15(7):646-656.
TCF-1 and LEF-1 are essential for early T cell development, but their roles beyond the CD4+CD8+ double positive (DP) stage are unknown. By specific ablation in DP thymocytes, we demonstrated that deficiency in TCF-1 and LEF-1 diminished CD4+ T cell output and redirected CD4+ T cells to a CD8+ T cell fate. The role of TCF-1 and LEF-1 in CD4-CD8 lineage choice was partly mediated by direct positive regulation of Th-POK. Furthermore, loss of TCF-1 and LEF-1 unexpectedly caused CD4 derepression in CD8+ lineage-committed T cells without affecting the expression of Runx factors. Instead, TCF-1 physically interacted with Runx3 to cooperatively silence the Cd4 gene. Thus, TCF-1 and LEF-1 adopt distinct genetic wiring to program CD4+ fate decision and establish CD8+ T cell identity.
PMCID: PMC4064003  PMID: 24836425
8.  Clinical Characteristics and Impact of Diabetes Mellitus on Outcomes in Patients with Nonvalvular Atrial Fibrillation 
Yonsei Medical Journal  2014;56(1):62-71.
Studies have shown that diabetes mellitus (DM) is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, including atrial fibrillation (AF); however, the clinical characteristics and prognostic impact of DM in patients with nonvalvular AF have not been well understood in China.
Materials and Methods
Included were 1644 consecutive patients with nonvalvular AF. Endpoints included all-cause mortality, cardiovascular mortality, stroke, major bleeding, and combined endpoint events (CEE) during a 1-year follow-up.
The prevalence of DM was 16.8% in nonvalvular AF patients. Compared with non-diabetic AF patients, diabetic AF patients were older and tended to coexist with other cardiovascular diseases. Most patients with DM (93.5%) were eligible for anticoagulation, as determined by CHADS2 scores. However, only 11.2% of patients received anticoagulation. During a 1-year follow-up, the all-cause mortality and CEE rate in the DM group were significantly higher than those of the non-DM group, while the incidence of stroke was comparable. After multivariate adjustments, DM was still an independent risk factor for 1-year all-cause mortality [hazard ratio (HR)=1.558; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.126-2.156; p=0.007], cardiovascular mortality (HR=1.615; 95% CI 1.052-2.479; p=0.028), and CEE (HR=1.523; 95% CI 1.098-2.112; p=0.012), yet not for stroke (HR=1.119; 95% CI 0.724-1.728; p=0.614).
DM is a common morbidity coexisting with nonvalvular AF and is associated with an increased risk of 1-year all-cause mortality, cardiovascular mortality, and CEE. However, no increased risk of stroke was found during a 1-year follow-up in patients with AF and DM.
PMCID: PMC4276779  PMID: 25510748
Nonvalvular atrial fibrillation; diabetes mellitus; anticoagulation; outcomes
9.  Are the numbers adding up? Exploiting discrepancies among complementary population models 
Ecology and Evolution  2014;5(2):368-376.
Large carnivores are difficult to monitor because they tend to be sparsely distributed, sensitive to human activity, and associated with complex life histories. Consequently, understanding population trend and viability requires conservationists to cope with uncertainty and bias in population data. Joint analysis of combined data sets using multiple models (i.e., integrated population model) can improve inference about mechanisms (e.g., habitat heterogeneity and food distribution) affecting population dynamics. However, unobserved or unobservable processes can also introduce bias and can be difficult to quantify. We developed a Bayesian hierarchical modeling approach for inference on an integrated population model that reconciles annual population counts with recruitment and survival data (i.e., demographic processes). Our modeling framework is flexible and enables a realistic form of population dynamics by fitting separate density-dependent responses for each demographic process. Discrepancies estimated from shared parameters among different model components represent unobserved additions (i.e., recruitment or immigration) or removals (i.e., death or emigration) when annual population counts are reliable. In a case study of gray wolves in Wisconsin (1980–2011), concordant with policy changes, we estimated that a discrepancy of 0% (1980–1995), −2% (1996–2002), and 4% (2003–2011) in the annual mortality rate was needed to explain annual growth rate. Additional mortality in 2003–2011 may reflect density-dependent mechanisms, changes in illegal killing with shifts in wolf management, and nonindependent censoring in survival data. Integrated population models provide insights into unobserved or unobservable processes by quantifying discrepancies among data sets. Our modeling approach is generalizable to many population analysis needs and allows for identifying dynamic differences due to external drivers, such as management or policy changes.
PMCID: PMC4314269
Bayesian inference; correction factor; gray wolves; hierarchical model; integrated population model; latent variable; population counts; radiotelemetry data; state-space model; survival analysis
10.  An Active Patch Model for Real World Texture and Appearance Classification 
This paper addresses the task of natural texture and appearance classification. Our goal is to develop a simple and intuitive method that performs at state of the art on datasets ranging from homogeneous texture (e.g., material texture), to less homogeneous texture (e.g., the fur of animals), and to inhomogeneous texture (the appearance patterns of vehicles). Our method uses a bag-of-words model where the features are based on a dictionary of active patches. Active patches are raw intensity patches which can undergo spatial transformations (e.g., rotation and scaling) and adjust themselves to best match the image regions. The dictionary of active patches is required to be compact and representative, in the sense that we can use it to approximately reconstruct the images that we want to classify. We propose a probabilistic model to quantify the quality of image reconstruction and design a greedy learning algorithm to obtain the dictionary. We classify images using the occurrence frequency of the active patches. Feature extraction is fast (about 100 ms per image) using the GPU. The experimental results show that our method improves the state of the art on a challenging material texture benchmark dataset (KTH-TIPS2). To test our method on less homogeneous or inhomogeneous images, we construct two new datasets consisting of appearance image patches of animals and vehicles cropped from the PASCAL VOC dataset. Our method outperforms competing methods on these datasets.
PMCID: PMC4270015  PMID: 25531013
Active Patch; Texture Classification; Appearance Recognition
11.  Integrating epigenetic data into molecular casual networks 
Molecular Pain  2014;10(Suppl 1):O21.
PMCID: PMC4304370
12.  Histone deacetylase 6 activity is critical for the metastasis of Burkitt’s lymphoma cells 
Cancer Cell International  2014;14(1):139.
Burkitt’s lymphoma is an aggressive malignancy with high risk of metastasis to extranodal sites, such as bone marrow and central nervous system. The prognosis of metastatic Burkitt’s lymphoma is poor. Here we sought to identify a role of histone deacetylase 6 (HDAC6) in the metastasis of Burkitt’s lymphoma cells.
Burkitt’s lymphoma cells were pharmacologically treated with niltubacin, tubacin or sodium butyrate (NaB) or transfected with siRNAs to knock down the expression of HDAC6. Cell migration and invasion ability were measured by transwell assay, and cell cycle progression was analyzed by flow cytometry. Cell adhesion and proliferation was determined by CellTiter-Glo luminescent cell viability assay kit. Cell morphological alteration and microtubule stability were analyzed by immunofluorescence staining. Effect of niltubacin, tubacin and NaB on acetylated tubulin and siRNA efficacy were measured by western blotting.
Suppression of histone deacetylase 6 activity significantly compromised the migration and invasion of Burkitt’s lymphoma cells, without affecting cell proliferation and cell cycle progression. Mechanistic study revealed that HDAC6 modulated chemokine induced cell shape elongation and cell adhesion probably through its action on microtubule dynamics.
We identified a critical role of HDAC6 in the metastasis of Burkitt’s lymphoma cells, suggesting that pharmacological inhibition of HDAC6 could be a promising strategy for the management of metastatic Burkitt’s lymphoma.
PMCID: PMC4276069  PMID: 25546298
Burkitt’s lymphoma; histone deacetylase 6; Cell shape elongation; Metastasis; Microtubule dynamics
13.  Global, regional, and national levels and causes of maternal mortality during 1990–2013: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2013 
Kassebaum, Nicholas J | Bertozzi-Villa, Amelia | Coggeshall, Megan S | Shackelford, Katya A | Steiner, Caitlyn | Heuton, Kyle R | Gonzalez-Medina, Diego | Barber, Ryan | Huynh, Chantal | Dicker, Daniel | Templin, Tara | Wolock, Timothy M | Ozgoren, Ayse Abbasoglu | Abd-Allah, Foad | Abera, Semaw Ferede | Abubakar, Ibrahim | Achoki, Tom | Adelekan, Ademola | Ademi, Zanfina | Adou, Arsène Kouablan | Adsuar, José C | Agardh, Emilie E | Akena, Dickens | Alasfoor, Deena | Alemu, Zewdie Aderaw | Alfonso-Cristancho, Rafael | Alhabib, Samia | Ali, Raghib | Al Kahbouri, Mazin J | Alla, François | Allen, Peter J | AlMazroa, Mohammad A | Alsharif, Ubai | Alvarez, Elena | Alvis-Guzmán, Nelson | Amankwaa, Adansi A | Amare, Azmeraw T | Amini, Hassan | Ammar, Walid | Antonio, Carl A T | Anwari, Palwasha | Ärnlöv, Johan | Arsenijevic, Valentina S Arsic | Artaman, Ali | Asad, Majed Masoud | Asghar, Rana J | Assadi, Reza | Atkins, Lydia S | Badawi, Alaa | Balakrishnan, Kalpana | Basu, Arindam | Basu, Sanjay | Beardsley, Justin | Bedi, Neeraj | Bekele, Tolesa | Bell, Michelle L | Bernabe, Eduardo | Beyene, Tariku J | Bhutta, Zulfiqar | Abdulhak, Aref Bin | Blore, Jed D | Basara, Berrak Bora | Bose, Dipan | Breitborde, Nicholas | Cárdenas, Rosario | Castañeda-Orjuela, Carlos A | Castro, Ruben Estanislao | Catalá-López, Ferrán | Cavlin, Alanur | Chang, Jung-Chen | Che, Xuan | Christophi, Costas A | Chugh, Sumeet S | Cirillo, Massimo | Colquhoun, Samantha M | Cooper, Leslie Trumbull | Cooper, Cyrus | da Costa Leite, Iuri | Dandona, Lalit | Dandona, Rakhi | Davis, Adrian | Dayama, Anand | Degenhardt, Louisa | De Leo, Diego | del Pozo-Cruz, Borja | Deribe, Kebede | Dessalegn, Muluken | deVeber, Gabrielle A | Dharmaratne, Samath D | Dilmen, Uğur | Ding, Eric L | Dorrington, Rob E | Driscoll, Tim R | Ermakov, Sergei Petrovich | Esteghamati, Alireza | Faraon, Emerito Jose A | Farzadfar, Farshad | Felicio, Manuela Mendonca | Fereshtehnejad, Seyed-Mohammad | de Lima, Graça Maria Ferreira | Forouzanfar, Mohammad H | França, Elisabeth B | Gaffikin, Lynne | Gambashidze, Ketevan | Gankpé, Fortuné Gbètoho | Garcia, Ana C | Geleijnse, Johanna M | Gibney, Katherine B | Giroud, Maurice | Glaser, Elizabeth L | Goginashvili, Ketevan | Gona, Philimon | González-Castell, Dinorah | Goto, Atsushi | Gouda, Hebe N | Gugnani, Harish Chander | Gupta, Rahul | Gupta, Rajeev | Hafezi-Nejad, Nima | Hamadeh, Randah Ribhi | Hammami, Mouhanad | Hankey, Graeme J | Harb, Hilda L | Havmoeller, Rasmus | Hay, Simon I | Heredia Pi, Ileana B | Hoek, Hans W | Hosgood, H Dean | Hoy, Damian G | Husseini, Abdullatif | Idrisov, Bulat T | Innos, Kaire | Inoue, Manami | Jacobsen, Kathryn H | Jahangir, Eiman | Jee, Sun Ha | Jensen, Paul N | Jha, Vivekanand | Jiang, Guohong | Jonas, Jost B | Juel, Knud | Kabagambe, Edmond Kato | Kan, Haidong | Karam, Nadim E | Karch, André | Karema, Corine Kakizi | Kaul, Anil | Kawakami, Norito | Kazanjan, Konstantin | Kazi, Dhruv S | Kemp, Andrew H | Kengne, Andre Pascal | Kereselidze, Maia | Khader, Yousef Saleh | Khalifa, Shams Eldin Ali Hassan | Khan, Ejaz Ahmed | Khang, Young-Ho | Knibbs, Luke | Kokubo, Yoshihiro | Kosen, Soewarta | Defo, Barthelemy Kuate | Kulkarni, Chanda | Kulkarni, Veena S | Kumar, G Anil | Kumar, Kaushalendra | Kumar, Ravi B | Kwan, Gene | Lai, Taavi | Lalloo, Ratilal | Lam, Hilton | Lansingh, Van C | Larsson, Anders | Lee, Jong-Tae | Leigh, James | Leinsalu, Mall | Leung, Ricky | Li, Xiaohong | Li, Yichong | Li, Yongmei | Liang, Juan | Liang, Xiaofeng | Lim, Stephen S | Lin, Hsien-Ho | Lipshultz, Steven E | Liu, Shiwei | Liu, Yang | Lloyd, Belinda K | London, Stephanie J | Lotufo, Paulo A | Ma, Jixiang | Ma, Stefan | Machado, Vasco Manuel Pedro | Mainoo, Nana Kwaku | Majdan, Marek | Mapoma, Christopher Chabila | Marcenes, Wagner | Marzan, Melvin Barrientos | Mason-Jones, Amanda J | Mehndiratta, Man Mohan | Mejia-Rodriguez, Fabiola | Memish, Ziad A | Mendoza, Walter | Miller, Ted R | Mills, Edward J | Mokdad, Ali H | Mola, Glen Liddell | Monasta, Lorenzo | de la Cruz Monis, Jonathan | Hernandez, Julio Cesar Montañez | Moore, Ami R | Moradi-Lakeh, Maziar | Mori, Rintaro | Mueller, Ulrich O | Mukaigawara, Mitsuru | Naheed, Aliya | Naidoo, Kovin S | Nand, Devina | Nangia, Vinay | Nash, Denis | Nejjari, Chakib | Nelson, Robert G | Neupane, Sudan Prasad | Newton, Charles R | Ng, Marie | Nieuwenhuijsen, Mark J | Nisar, Muhammad Imran | Nolte, Sandra | Norheim, Ole F | Nyakarahuka, Luke | Oh, In-Hwan | Ohkubo, Takayoshi | Olusanya, Bolajoko O | Omer, Saad B | Opio, John Nelson | Orisakwe, Orish Ebere | Pandian, Jeyaraj D | Papachristou, Christina | Park, Jae-Hyun | Caicedo, Angel J Paternina | Patten, Scott B | Paul, Vinod K | Pavlin, Boris Igor | Pearce, Neil | Pereira, David M | Pesudovs, Konrad | Petzold, Max | Poenaru, Dan | Polanczyk, Guilherme V | Polinder, Suzanne | Pope, Dan | Pourmalek, Farshad | Qato, Dima | Quistberg, D Alex | Rafay, Anwar | Rahimi, Kazem | Rahimi-Movaghar, Vafa | Rahman, Sajjad ur | Raju, Murugesan | Rana, Saleem M | Refaat, Amany | Ronfani, Luca | Roy, Nobhojit | Sánchez Pimienta, Tania Georgina | Sahraian, Mohammad Ali | Salomon, Joshua A | Sampson, Uchechukwu | Santos, Itamar S | Sawhney, Monika | Sayinzoga, Felix | Schneider, Ione J C | Schumacher, Austin | Schwebel, David C | Seedat, Soraya | Sepanlou, Sadaf G | Servan-Mori, Edson E | Shakh-Nazarova, Marina | Sheikhbahaei, Sara | Shibuya, Kenji | Shin, Hwashin Hyun | Shiue, Ivy | Sigfusdottir, Inga Dora | Silberberg, Donald H | Silva, Andrea P | Singh, Jasvinder A | Skirbekk, Vegard | Sliwa, Karen | Soshnikov, Sergey S | Sposato, Luciano A | Sreeramareddy, Chandrashekhar T | Stroumpoulis, Konstantinos | Sturua, Lela | Sykes, Bryan L | Tabb, Karen M | Talongwa, Roberto Tchio | Tan, Feng | Teixeira, Carolina Maria | Tenkorang, Eric Yeboah | Terkawi, Abdullah Sulieman | Thorne-Lyman, Andrew L | Tirschwell, David L | Towbin, Jeffrey A | Tran, Bach X | Tsilimbaris, Miltiadis | Uchendu, Uche S | Ukwaja, Kingsley N | Undurraga, Eduardo A | Uzun, Selen Begüm | Vallely, Andrew J | van Gool, Coen H | Vasankari, Tommi J | Vavilala, Monica S | Venketasubramanian, N | Villalpando, Salvador | Violante, Francesco S | Vlassov, Vasiliy Victorovich | Vos, Theo | Waller, Stephen | Wang, Haidong | Wang, Linhong | Wang, XiaoRong | Wang, Yanping | Weichenthal, Scott | Weiderpass, Elisabete | Weintraub, Robert G | Westerman, Ronny | Wilkinson, James D | Woldeyohannes, Solomon Meseret | Wong, John Q | Wordofa, Muluemebet Abera | Xu, Gelin | Yang, Yang C | Yano, Yuichiro | Yentur, Gokalp Kadri | Yip, Paul | Yonemoto, Naohiro | Yoon, Seok-Jun | Younis, Mustafa Z | Yu, Chuanhua | Jin, Kim Yun | El SayedZaki, Maysaa | Zhao, Yong | Zheng, Yingfeng | Zhou, Maigeng | Zhu, Jun | Zou, Xiao Nong | Lopez, Alan D | Naghavi, Mohsen | Murray, Christopher J L | Lozano, Rafael
Lancet  2014;384(9947):980-1004.
The fifth Millennium Development Goal (MDG 5) established the goal of a 75% reduction in the maternal mortality ratio (MMR; number of maternal deaths per 100 000 livebirths) between 1990 and 2015. We aimed to measure levels and track trends in maternal mortality, the key causes contributing to maternal death, and timing of maternal death with respect to delivery.
We used robust statistical methods including the Cause of Death Ensemble model (CODEm) to analyse a database of data for 7065 site-years and estimate the number of maternal deaths from all causes in 188 countries between 1990 and 2013. We estimated the number of pregnancy-related deaths caused by HIV on the basis of a systematic review of the relative risk of dying during pregnancy for HIV-positive women compared with HIV-negative women. We also estimated the fraction of these deaths aggravated by pregnancy on the basis of a systematic review. To estimate the numbers of maternal deaths due to nine different causes, we identified 61 sources from a systematic review and 943 site-years of vital registration data. We also did a systematic review of reports about the timing of maternal death, identifying 142 sources to use in our analysis. We developed estimates for each country for 1990–2013 using Bayesian meta-regression. We estimated 95% uncertainty intervals (UIs) for all values.
292 982 (95% UI 261 017–327 792) maternal deaths occurred in 2013, compared with 376 034 (343 483–407 574) in 1990. The global annual rate of change in the MMR was −0·3% (−1·1 to 0·6) from 1990 to 2003, and −2·7% (−3·9 to −1·5) from 2003 to 2013, with evidence of continued acceleration. MMRs reduced consistently in south, east, and southeast Asia between 1990 and 2013, but maternal deaths increased in much of sub-Saharan Africa during the 1990s. 2070 (1290–2866) maternal deaths were related to HIV in 2013, 0·4% (0·2–0·6) of the global total. MMR was highest in the oldest age groups in both 1990 and 2013. In 2013, most deaths occurred intrapartum or postpartum. Causes varied by region and between 1990 and 2013. We recorded substantial variation in the MMR by country in 2013, from 956·8 (685·1–1262·8) in South Sudan to 2·4 (1·6–3·6) in Iceland.
Global rates of change suggest that only 16 countries will achieve the MDG 5 target by 2015. Accelerated reductions since the Millennium Declaration in 2000 coincide with increased development assistance for maternal, newborn, and child health. Setting of targets and associated interventions for after 2015 will need careful consideration of regions that are making slow progress, such as west and central Africa.
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
PMCID: PMC4255481  PMID: 24797575
14.  Outer Membrane Protein OmpW Is the Receptor for Typing Phage VP5 in the Vibrio cholerae O1 El Tor Biotype 
Journal of Virology  2014;88(12):7109-7111.
Phage typing is used for the subtyping of clones of epidemic bacteria. In this study, we identified the outer membrane protein OmpW as the receptor for phage VP5, one of the typing phages for the Vibrio cholerae O1 El Tor biotype. A characteristic 11-bp deletion in ompW was observed in all epidemic strains resistant to VP5, suggesting that this mutation event can be used as a tracing marker in cholera surveillance.
PMCID: PMC4054361  PMID: 24719419
15.  Escherichia coli Isolate for Studying Colonization of the Mouse Intestine and Its Application to Two-Component Signaling Knockouts 
Journal of Bacteriology  2014;196(9):1723-1732.
The biology of Escherichia coli in its primary niche, the animal intestinal tract, is remarkably unexplored. Studies with the streptomycin-treated mouse model have produced important insights into the metabolic requirements for Escherichia coli to colonize mice. However, we still know relatively little about the physiology of this bacterium growing in the complex environment of an intestine that is permissive for the growth of competing flora. We have developed a system for studying colonization using an E. coli strain, MP1, isolated from a mouse. MP1 is genetically tractable and does not require continuous antibiotic treatment for stable colonization. As an application of this system, we separately knocked out each two-component system response regulator in MP1 and performed competitions against the wild-type strain. We found that only three response regulators, ArcA, CpxR, and RcsB, produce strong colonization defects, suggesting that in addition to anaerobiosis, adaptation to cell envelope stress is a critical requirement for E. coli colonization of the mouse intestine. We also show that the response regulator OmpR, which had previously been hypothesized to be important for adaptation between in vivo and ex vivo environments, is not required for MP1 colonization due to the presence of a third major porin.
PMCID: PMC3993324  PMID: 24563035
16.  Epigenome-wide differences in pathology-free regions of multiple sclerosis–affected brains 
Nature neuroscience  2013;17(1):121-130.
Using the Illumina 450K array and a stringent statistical analysis with age and gender correction, we report genome-wide differences in DNA methylation between pathology-free regions derived from human multiple sclerosis–affected and control brains. Differences were subtle, but widespread and reproducible in an independent validation cohort. The transcriptional consequences of differential DNA methylation were further defined by genome-wide RNA-sequencing analysis and validated in two independent cohorts. Genes regulating oligodendrocyte survival, such as BCL2L2 and NDRG1, were hypermethylated and expressed at lower levels in multiple sclerosis–affected brains than in controls, while genes related to proteolytic processing (for example, LGMN, CTSZ) were hypomethylated and expressed at higher levels. These results were not due to differences in cellular composition between multiple sclerosis and controls. Thus, epigenomic changes in genes affecting oligodendrocyte susceptibility to damage are detected in pathology-free areas of multiple sclerosis–affected brains.
PMCID: PMC3934491  PMID: 24270187
17.  Ursolic acid induces cell cycle arrest and apoptosis of gallbladder carcinoma cells 
Cancer Cell International  2014;14(1):96.
Ursolic acid (UA), a plant extract used in traditional Chinese medicine, exhibits potential anticancer effects in various human cancer cell lines in vitro. In the present study, we evaluated the anti-tumoral properties of UA against gallbladder carcinoma and investigated the potential mechanisms responsible for its effects on proliferation, cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in vitro.
The anti-tumor activity of UA against GBC-SD and SGC-996 cells was assessed using MTT and colony formation assays. An annexin V/PI double-staining assay was used to detect cell apoptosis. Cell cycle changes were detected using flow cytometry. Rhodamine 123 staining was used to assess the mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm) and validate UA’s ability to induce apoptosis in both cell lines. The effectiveness of UA in gallbladder cancer was further verified in vivo by establishing a xenograft GBC model in nude mice. Finally, the expression levels of cell cycle- and apoptosis-related proteins were analyzed by western blotting.
Our results suggest that UA can significantly inhibit the growth of gallbladder cancer cells. MTT and colony formation assays indicated dose-dependent decreases in cell proliferation. S-phase arrest was observed in both cell lines after treatment with UA. Annexin V/PI staining suggested that UA induced both early and late phases of apoptosis. UA also decreased ΔΨm and altered the expression of molecules regulating the cell cycle and apoptosis. In vivo study showed intraperitoneally injection of UA can significantly inhibited the growth of xenograft tumor in nude mice and the inhibition efficiency is dose related. Activation of caspase-3,-9 and PARP indicated that mitochondrial pathways may be involved in UA-induced apoptosis.
Taken together, these results suggest that UA exhibits significant anti-tumor effects by suppressing cell proliferation, promoting apoptosis and inducing 7cell cycle arrest both in vitro and in vivo. It may be a potential agent for treating gallbladder cancer.
PMCID: PMC4224689  PMID: 25383044
Ursolic acid; Gallbladder cancer; Proliferation; Cell cycle; Apoptosis; Mitochondrial-mediated pathway
18.  The incidence of acute myocardial infarction in relation to overweight and obesity: a meta-analysis 
Archives of Medical Science : AMS  2014;10(5):855-862.
Epidemiological evidence suggests that overweight and obesity have been associated with acute myocardial infarction (AMI). However, data on this issue are controversial. This study aims to use meta-analysis to determine whether overweight and obesity are related to AMI.
Material and methods
We searched PubMed and Embase databases up to October 23rd, 2013 for related literature. The association of overweight and obesity with AMI was assessed by odd ratio (OR) with 95% confidence interval (CI) as the effect size. Then subgroup analysis was performed according to gender, area and study type.
Five primary studies (one cohort study and four case-control studies) were included in this meta-analysis involving 36 803 participants, 14 883 of whom had an AMI. There was a significant association between overweight and AMI (OR = 1.27, 95% CI: 1.21–1.33, p < 0.001). Similar results revealed a relation between obesity and AMI (OR = 1.22, 95% CI: 1.07–1.40, p = 0.003). Subgroup analysis showed that overweight and obesity were positively associated with AMI risk except for obese subjects in Europe. There was no publication bias (Begg's test p = 0.972, Egger's test p = 0.858).
Both overweight and obesity increased the incidence of AMI, and it is necessary to control weight to prevent AMI. A large number of studies is needed to explore the mechanisms that link overweight and obesity with AMI.
PMCID: PMC4223131  PMID: 25395935
meta-analysis; acute myocardial infarction; overweight; obesity
19.  Global, regional, and national incidence and mortality for HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria during 1990–2013: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2013 
Murray, Christopher J L | Ortblad, Katrina F | Guinovart, Caterina | Lim, Stephen S | Wolock, Timothy M | Roberts, D Allen | Dansereau, Emily A | Graetz, Nicholas | Barber, Ryan M | Brown, Jonathan C | Wang, Haidong | Duber, Herbert C | Naghavi, Mohsen | Dicker, Daniel | Dandona, Lalit | Salomon, Joshua A | Heuton, Kyle R | Foreman, Kyle | Phillips, David E | Fleming, Thomas D | Flaxman, Abraham D | Phillips, Bryan K | Johnson, Elizabeth K | Coggeshall, Megan S | Abd-Allah, Foad | Ferede, Semaw | Abraham, Jerry P | Abubakar, Ibrahim | Abu-Raddad, Laith J | Abu-Rmeileh, Niveen Me | Achoki, Tom | Adeyemo, Austine Olufemi | Adou, Arsène Kouablan | Adsuar, José C | Agardh, Emilie Elisabet | Akena, Dickens | Al Kahbouri, Mazin J | Alasfoor, Deena | Albittar, Mohammed I | Alcalá-Cerra, Gabriel | Alegretti, Miguel Angel | Alemu, Zewdie Aderaw | Alfonso-Cristancho, Rafael | Alhabib, Samia | Ali, Raghib | Alla, Francois | Allen, Peter J | Alsharif, Ubai | Alvarez, Elena | Alvis-Guzman, Nelson | Amankwaa, Adansi A | Amare, Azmeraw T | Amini, Hassan | Ammar, Walid | Anderson, Benjamin O | Antonio, Carl Abelardo T | Anwari, Palwasha | Ärnlöv, Johan | Arsenijevic, Valentina S Arsic | Artaman, Ali | Asghar, Rana J | Assadi, Reza | Atkins, Lydia S | Badawi, Alaa | Balakrishnan, Kalpana | Banerjee, Amitava | Basu, Sanjay | Beardsley, Justin | Bekele, Tolesa | Bell, Michelle L | Bernabe, Eduardo | Beyene, Tariku Jibat | Bhala, Neeraj | Bhalla, Ashish | Bhutta, Zulfiqar A | Abdulhak, Aref Bin | Binagwaho, Agnes | Blore, Jed D | Basara, Berrak Bora | Bose, Dipan | Brainin, Michael | Breitborde, Nicholas | Castañeda-Orjuela, Carlos A | Catalá-López, Ferrán | Chadha, Vineet K | Chang, Jung-Chen | Chiang, Peggy Pei-Chia | Chuang, Ting-Wu | Colomar, Mercedes | Cooper, Leslie Trumbull | Cooper, Cyrus | Courville, Karen J | Cowie, Benjamin C | Criqui, Michael H | Dandona, Rakhi | Dayama, Anand | De Leo, Diego | Degenhardt, Louisa | Del Pozo-Cruz, Borja | Deribe, Kebede | Jarlais, Don C Des | Dessalegn, Muluken | Dharmaratne, Samath D | Dilmen, Uğur | Ding, Eric L | Driscoll, Tim R | Durrani, Adnan M | Ellenbogen, Richard G | Ermakov, Sergey Petrovich | Esteghamati, Alireza | Faraon, Emerito Jose A | Farzadfar, Farshad | Fereshtehnejad, Seyed-Mohammad | Fijabi, Daniel Obadare | Forouzanfar, Mohammad H | Paleo, Urbano Fra. | Gaffikin, Lynne | Gamkrelidze, Amiran | Gankpé, Fortuné Gbètoho | Geleijnse, Johanna M | Gessner, Bradford D | Gibney, Katherine B | Ginawi, Ibrahim Abdelmageem Mohamed | Glaser, Elizabeth L | Gona, Philimon | Goto, Atsushi | Gouda, Hebe N | Gugnani, Harish Chander | Gupta, Rajeev | Gupta, Rahul | Hafezi-Nejad, Nima | Hamadeh, Randah Ribhi | Hammami, Mouhanad | Hankey, Graeme J | Harb, Hilda L | Haro, Josep Maria | Havmoeller, Rasmus | Hay, Simon I | Hedayati, Mohammad T | Pi, Ileana B Heredia | Hoek, Hans W | Hornberger, John C | Hosgood, H Dean | Hotez, Peter J | Hoy, Damian G | Huang, John J | Iburg, Kim M | Idrisov, Bulat T | Innos, Kaire | Jacobsen, Kathryn H | Jeemon, Panniyammakal | Jensen, Paul N | Jha, Vivekanand | Jiang, Guohong | Jonas, Jost B | Juel, Knud | Kan, Haidong | Kankindi, Ida | Karam, Nadim E | Karch, André | Karema, Corine Kakizi | Kaul, Anil | Kawakami, Norito | Kazi, Dhruv S | Kemp, Andrew H | Kengne, Andre Pascal | Keren, Andre | Kereselidze, Maia | Khader, Yousef Saleh | Khalifa, Shams Eldin Ali Hassan | Khan, Ejaz Ahmed | Khang, Young-Ho | Khonelidze, Irma | Kinfu, Yohannes | Kinge, Jonas M | Knibbs, Luke | Kokubo, Yoshihiro | Kosen, S | Defo, Barthelemy Kuate | Kulkarni, Veena S | Kulkarni, Chanda | Kumar, Kaushalendra | Kumar, Ravi B | Kumar, G Anil | Kwan, Gene F | Lai, Taavi | Balaji, Arjun Lakshmana | Lam, Hilton | Lan, Qing | Lansingh, Van C | Larson, Heidi J | Larsson, Anders | Lee, Jong-Tae | Leigh, James | Leinsalu, Mall | Leung, Ricky | Li, Yichong | Li, Yongmei | De Lima, Graça Maria Ferreira | Lin, Hsien-Ho | Lipshultz, Steven E | Liu, Shiwei | Liu, Yang | Lloyd, Belinda K | Lotufo, Paulo A | Machado, Vasco Manuel Pedro | Maclachlan, Jennifer H | Magis-Rodriguez, Carlos | Majdan, Marek | Mapoma, Christopher Chabila | Marcenes, Wagner | Marzan, Melvin Barrientos | Masci, Joseph R | Mashal, Mohammad Taufiq | Mason-Jones, Amanda J | Mayosi, Bongani M | Mazorodze, Tasara T | Mckay, Abigail Cecilia | Meaney, Peter A | Mehndiratta, Man Mohan | Mejia-Rodriguez, Fabiola | Melaku, Yohannes Adama | Memish, Ziad A | Mendoza, Walter | Miller, Ted R | Mills, Edward J | Mohammad, Karzan Abdulmuhsin | Mokdad, Ali H | Mola, Glen Liddell | Monasta, Lorenzo | Montico, Marcella | Moore, Ami R | Mori, Rintaro | Moturi, Wilkister Nyaora | Mukaigawara, Mitsuru | Murthy, Kinnari S | Naheed, Aliya | Naidoo, Kovin S | Naldi, Luigi | Nangia, Vinay | Narayan, K M Venkat | Nash, Denis | Nejjari, Chakib | Nelson, Robert G | Neupane, Sudan Prasad | Newton, Charles R | Ng, Marie | Nisar, Muhammad Imran | Nolte, Sandra | Norheim, Ole F | Nowaseb, Vincent | Nyakarahuka, Luke | Oh, In-Hwan | Ohkubo, Takayoshi | Olusanya, Bolajoko O | Omer, Saad B | Opio, John Nelson | Orisakwe, Orish Ebere | Pandian, Jeyaraj D | Papachristou, Christina | Caicedo, Angel J Paternina | Patten, Scott B | Paul, Vinod K | Pavlin, Boris Igor | Pearce, Neil | Pereira, David M | Pervaiz, Aslam | Pesudovs, Konrad | Petzold, Max | Pourmalek, Farshad | Qato, Dima | Quezada, Amado D | Quistberg, D Alex | Rafay, Anwar | Rahimi, Kazem | Rahimi-Movaghar, Vafa | Rahman, Sajjad Ur | Raju, Murugesan | Rana, Saleem M | Razavi, Homie | Reilly, Robert Quentin | Remuzzi, Giuseppe | Richardus, Jan Hendrik | Ronfani, Luca | Roy, Nobhojit | Sabin, Nsanzimana | Saeedi, Mohammad Yahya | Sahraian, Mohammad Ali | Samonte, Genesis May J | Sawhney, Monika | Schneider, Ione J C | Schwebel, David C | Seedat, Soraya | Sepanlou, Sadaf G | Servan-Mori, Edson E | Sheikhbahaei, Sara | Shibuya, Kenji | Shin, Hwashin Hyun | Shiue, Ivy | Shivakoti, Rupak | Sigfusdottir, Inga Dora | Silberberg, Donald H | Silva, Andrea P | Simard, Edgar P | Singh, Jasvinder A | Skirbekk, Vegard | Sliwa, Karen | Soneji, Samir | Soshnikov, Sergey S | Sreeramareddy, Chandrashekhar T | Stathopoulou, Vasiliki Kalliopi | Stroumpoulis, Konstantinos | Swaminathan, Soumya | Sykes, Bryan L | Tabb, Karen M | Talongwa, Roberto Tchio | Tenkorang, Eric Yeboah | Terkawi, Abdullah Sulieman | Thomson, Alan J | Thorne-Lyman, Andrew L | Towbin, Jeffrey A | Traebert, Jefferson | Tran, Bach X | Dimbuene, Zacharie Tsala | Tsilimbaris, Miltiadis | Uchendu, Uche S | Ukwaja, Kingsley N | Uzun, Selen Begüm | Vallely, Andrew J | Vasankari, Tommi J | Venketasubramanian, N | Violante, Francesco S | Vlassov, Vasiliy Victorovich | Vollset, Stein Emil | Waller, Stephen | Wallin, Mitchell T | Wang, Linhong | Wang, XiaoRong | Wang, Yanping | Weichenthal, Scott | Weiderpass, Elisabete | Weintraub, Robert G | Westerman, Ronny | White, Richard A | Wilkinson, James D | Williams, Thomas Neil | Woldeyohannes, Solomon Meseret | Wong, John Q | Xu, Gelin | Yang, Yang C | Yano, Yuichiro | Yentur, Gokalp Kadri | Yip, Paul | Yonemoto, Naohiro | Yoon, Seok-Jun | Younis, Mustafa | Yu, Chuanhua | Jin, Kim Yun | El Sayed Zaki, Maysaa | Zhao, Yong | Zheng, Yingfeng | Zhou, Maigeng | Zhu, Jun | Zou, Xiao Nong | Lopez, Alan D | Vos, Theo
Lancet  2014;384(9947):1005-1070.
The Millennium Declaration in 2000 brought special global attention to HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria through the formulation of Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 6. The Global Burden of Disease 2013 study provides a consistent and comprehensive approach to disease estimation for between 1990 and 2013, and an opportunity to assess whether accelerated progress has occurred since the Millennium Declaration.
To estimate incidence and mortality for HIV, we used the UNAIDS Spectrum model appropriately modified based on a systematic review of available studies of mortality with and without antiretroviral therapy (ART). For concentrated epidemics, we calibrated Spectrum models to fit vital registration data corrected for misclassification of HIV deaths. In generalised epidemics, we minimised a loss function to select epidemic curves most consistent with prevalence data and demographic data for all-cause mortality. We analysed counterfactual scenarios for HIV to assess years of life saved through prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) and ART. For tuberculosis, we analysed vital registration and verbal autopsy data to estimate mortality using cause of death ensemble modelling. We analysed data for corrected case-notifications, expert opinions on the case-detection rate, prevalence surveys, and estimated cause-specific mortality using Bayesian meta-regression to generate consistent trends in all parameters. We analysed malaria mortality and incidence using an updated cause of death database, a systematic analysis of verbal autopsy validation studies for malaria, and recent studies (2010–13) of incidence, drug resistance, and coverage of insecticide-treated bednets.
Globally in 2013, there were 1·8 million new HIV infections (95% uncertainty interval 1·7 million to 2·1 million), 29·2 million prevalent HIV cases (28·1 to 31·7), and 1·3 million HIV deaths (1·3 to 1·5). At the peak of the epidemic in 2005, HIV caused 1·7 million deaths (1·6 million to 1·9 million). Concentrated epidemics in Latin America and eastern Europe are substantially smaller than previously estimated. Through interventions including PMTCT and ART, 19·1 million life-years (16·6 million to 21·5 million) have been saved, 70·3% (65·4 to 76·1) in developing countries. From 2000 to 2011, the ratio of development assistance for health for HIV to years of life saved through intervention was US$4498 in developing countries. Including in HIV-positive individuals, all-form tuberculosis incidence was 7·5 million (7·4 million to 7·7 million), prevalence was 11·9 million (11·6 million to 12·2 million), and number of deaths was 1·4 million (1·3 million to 1·5 million) in 2013. In the same year and in only individuals who were HIV-negative, all-form tuberculosis incidence was 7·1 million (6·9 million to 7·3 million), prevalence was 11·2 million (10·8 million to 11·6 million), and number of deaths was 1·3 million (1·2 million to 1·4 million). Annualised rates of change (ARC) for incidence, prevalence, and death became negative after 2000. Tuberculosis in HIV-negative individuals disproportionately occurs in men and boys (versus women and girls); 64·0% of cases (63·6 to 64·3) and 64·7% of deaths (60·8 to 70·3). Globally, malaria cases and deaths grew rapidly from 1990 reaching a peak of 232 million cases (143 million to 387 million) in 2003 and 1·2 million deaths (1·1 million to 1·4 million) in 2004. Since 2004, child deaths from malaria in sub-Saharan Africa have decreased by 31·5% (15·7 to 44·1). Outside of Africa, malaria mortality has been steadily decreasing since 1990.
Our estimates of the number of people living with HIV are 18·7% smaller than UNAIDS’s estimates in 2012. The number of people living with malaria is larger than estimated by WHO. The number of people living with HIV, tuberculosis, or malaria have all decreased since 2000. At the global level, upward trends for malaria and HIV deaths have been reversed and declines in tuberculosis deaths have accelerated. 101 countries (74 of which are developing) still have increasing HIV incidence. Substantial progress since the Millennium Declaration is an encouraging sign of the effect of global action.
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
PMCID: PMC4202387  PMID: 25059949
20.  Enhanced Interaction of Vibrio cholerae Virulence Regulators TcpP and ToxR under Oxygen-Limiting Conditions 
Infection and Immunity  2014;82(4):1676-1682.
Vibrio cholerae is the causative agent of the diarrheal disease cholera. The ability of V. cholerae to colonize and cause disease requires the intricately regulated expression of a number of virulence factors during infection. One of the signals sensed by V. cholerae is the presence of oxygen-limiting conditions in the gut. It has been shown that the virulence activator AphB plays a key role in sensing low oxygen concentrations and inducing the transcription of another key virulence activator, TcpP. In this study, we used a bacterial two-hybrid system to further examine the effect of oxygen on different virulence regulators. We found that anoxic conditions enhanced the interaction between TcpP and ToxR, identified as the first positive regulator of V. cholerae virulence genes. We further demonstrated that the TcpP-ToxR interaction was dependent on the primary periplasmic protein disulfide formation enzyme DsbA and cysteine residues in the periplasmic domains of both ToxR and TcpP. Furthermore, we showed that in V. cholerae, an interaction between TcpP and ToxR is important for virulence gene induction. Under anaerobic growth conditions, we detected ToxR-TcpP heterodimers, which were abolished in the presence of the reducing agent dithiothreitol. Our results suggest that V. cholerae may sense intestinal anoxic signals by multiple components to activate virulence.
PMCID: PMC3993381  PMID: 24491579
21.  Plasmodium genetic loci linked to host cytokine and chemokine responses 
Genes and immunity  2014;15(3):145-152.
Both host and parasite factors contribute to disease severity of malaria infection; however, the molecular mechanisms responsible for the disease and the host-parasite interactions involved remain largely unresolved. To investigate effects of parasite factors on host immune responses and pathogenesis, we measured levels of plasma cytokines/chemokines (CC) and growth rates in mice infected with two Plasmodium yoelii strains having different virulence phenotypes and in progeny from a genetic cross of the two parasites. Quantitative trait loci (QTL) analysis linked levels of many CCs, particularly IL-1β, IP-10, IFN-γ, MCP-1, and MIG, and early parasite growth rate to loci on multiple parasite chromosomes, including chromosomes 7, 9, 10, 12, and 13. Comparison of the genome sequences spanning the mapped loci revealed various candidate genes. The loci on chromosome 7 and 13 had significant (p < 0.005) additive effects on IL-1β, IL-5, and IP-10 responses, and the chromosome 9 and 12 loci had significant (p = 0.017) interaction. Infection of knockout mice showed critical roles of MCP-1 and IL-10 in parasitemia control and host mortality. These results provide important information for better understanding of malaria pathogenesis and can be used to examine the role of these factors in human malaria infection.
PMCID: PMC3999244  PMID: 24452266
genetic mapping; cytokine; chemokine; inflammation; pathogenesis; virulence
22.  Non-pulmonary vein foci induced before and after pulmonary vein isolation in patients undergoing ablation therapy for paroxysmal atrial fibrillation: incidence and clinical outcome 
Objective: To evaluate the incidence and clinical outcome of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) plus isoproterenol (ISP)-induced non-pulmonary vein (PV) foci before and after circumferential PV isolation (CPVI) during index ablation in patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (PAF). Methods: In 80 consecutive patients undergoing catheter ablation for drug-refractory, symptomatic PAF at our hospital from April 2010 to January 2011, atrial fibrillation (AF) was provoked with ATP (20 mg) and ISP (20 μg/min) administration before and after CPVI. The spontaneous initiation of AF was mapped and recorded. Results: Before ablation, AF mostly originating from PVs (PV vs. non-PV, 36/70 vs. 3/70; P<0.01) was induced in 39 patients with sinus rhythm. CPVI significantly suppressed AF inducibility; however, more non-PV foci were provoked (post-CPVI vs. pre-CPVI, 13/76 vs. 3/70; P=0.016). Patients with pre- and post-CPVI induced AF (n=49) were divided according to non-PV foci being induced (group N, n=17) or not (group P, n=32). After mean (19.2±8.2) months follow-up, 88.2% (15/17) and 65.6% (21/32) of patients in groups N and P, respectively, were free from AF recurrence (P=0.088). Conclusions: ATP+ISP administration effectively provokes non-PV foci, especially after CPVI in PAF patients. Although in this study difference did not achieve statistical significance, supplementary ablation targeting non-PV foci might benefit clinical outcome.
PMCID: PMC4201320  PMID: 25294381
Atrial fibrillation; Non-pulmonary vein foci; Adenosine triphosphate
23.  First Report of a Deletion Encompassing an Entire Exon in the Homogentisate 1,2-Dioxygenase Gene Causing Alkaptonuria 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(9):e106948.
Alkaptonuria is often diagnosed clinically with episodes of dark urine, biochemically by the accumulation of peripheral homogentisic acid and molecularly by the presence of mutations in the homogentisate 1,2-dioxygenase gene (HGD). Alkaptonuria is invariably associated with HGD mutations, which consist of single nucleotide variants and small insertions/deletions. Surprisingly, the presence of deletions beyond a few nucleotides among over 150 reported deleterious mutations has not been described, raising the suspicion that this gene might be protected against the detrimental mechanisms of gene rearrangements. The quest for an HGD mutation in a proband with AKU revealed with a SNP array five large regions of homozygosity (5–16 Mb), one of which includes the HGD gene. A homozygous deletion of 649 bp deletion that encompasses the 72 nucleotides of exon 2 and surrounding DNA sequences in flanking introns of the HGD gene was unveiled in a proband with AKU. The nature of this deletion suggests that this in-frame deletion could generate a protein without exon 2. Thus, we modeled the tertiary structure of the mutant protein structure to determine the effect of exon 2 deletion. While the two β-pleated sheets encoded by exon 2 were missing in the mutant structure, other β-pleated sheets are largely unaffected by the deletion. However, nine novel α-helical coils substituted the eight coils present in the native HGD crystal structure. Thus, this deletion results in a deleterious enzyme, which is consistent with the proband’s phenotype. Screening for mutations in the HGD gene, particularly in the Middle East, ought to include this exon 2 deletion in order to determine its frequency and uncover its origin.
PMCID: PMC4169433  PMID: 25233259
24.  Global, regional, and national levels of neonatal, infant, and under-5 mortality during 1990–2013: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2013 
Wang, Haidong | Liddell, Chelsea A | Coates, Matthew M | Mooney, Meghan D | Levitz, Carly E | Schumacher, Austin E | Apfel, Henry | Iannarone, Marissa | Phillips, Bryan | Lofgren, Katherine T | Sandar, Logan | Dorrington, Rob E | Rakovac, Ivo | Jacobs, Troy A | Liang, Xiaofeng | Zhou, Maigeng | Zhu, Jun | Yang, Gonghuan | Wang, Yanping | Liu, Shiwei | Li, Yichong | Ozgoren, Ayse Abbasoglu | Abera, Semaw Ferede | Abubakar, Ibrahim | Achoki, Tom | Adelekan, Ademola | Ademi, Zanfina | Alemu, Zewdie Aderaw | Allen, Peter J | AlMazroa, Mohammad AbdulAziz | Alvarez, Elena | Amankwaa, Adansi A | Amare, Azmeraw T | Ammar, Walid | Anwari, Palwasha | Cunningham, Solveig Argeseanu | Asad, Majed Masoud | Assadi, Reza | Banerjee, Amitava | Basu, Sanjay | Bedi, Neeraj | Bekele, Tolesa | Bell, Michelle L | Bhutta, Zulfiqar | Blore, Jed | Basara, Berrak Bora | Boufous, Soufiane | Breitborde, Nicholas | Bruce, Nigel G | Bui, Linh Ngoc | Carapetis, Jonathan R | Cárdenas, Rosario | Carpenter, David O | Caso, Valeria | Castro, Ruben Estanislao | Catalá-Lopéz, Ferrán | Cavlin, Alanur | Che, Xuan | Chiang, Peggy Pei-Chia | Chowdhury, Rajiv | Christophi, Costas A | Chuang, Ting-Wu | Cirillo, Massimo | Leite, Iuri da Costa | Courville, Karen J | Dandona, Lalit | Dandona, Rakhi | Davis, Adrian | Dayama, Anand | Deribe, Kebede | Dharmaratne, Samath D | Dherani, Mukesh K | Dilmen, Uğur | Ding, Eric L | Edmond, Karen M | Ermakov, Sergei Petrovich | Farzadfar, Farshad | Fereshtehnejad, Seyed-Mohammad | Fijabi, Daniel Obadare | Foigt, Nataliya | Forouzanfar, Mohammad H | Garcia, Ana C | Geleijnse, Johanna M | Gessner, Bradford D | Goginashvili, Ketevan | Gona, Philimon | Goto, Atsushi | Gouda, Hebe N | Green, Mark A | Greenwell, Karen Fern | Gugnani, Harish Chander | Gupta, Rahul | Hamadeh, Randah Ribhi | Hammami, Mouhanad | Harb, Hilda L | Hay, Simon | Hedayati, Mohammad T | Hosgood, H Dean | Hoy, Damian G | Idrisov, Bulat T | Islami, Farhad | Ismayilova, Samaya | Jha, Vivekanand | Jiang, Guohong | Jonas, Jost B | Juel, Knud | Kabagambe, Edmond Kato | Kazi, Dhruv S | Kengne, Andre Pascal | Kereselidze, Maia | Khader, Yousef Saleh | Khalifa, Shams Eldin Ali Hassan | Khang, Young-Ho | Kim, Daniel | Kinfu, Yohannes | Kinge, Jonas M | Kokubo, Yoshihiro | Kosen, Soewarta | Defo, Barthelemy Kuate | Kumar, G Anil | Kumar, Kaushalendra | Kumar, Ravi B | Lai, Taavi | Lan, Qing | Larsson, Anders | Lee, Jong-Tae | Leinsalu, Mall | Lim, Stephen S | Lipshultz, Steven E | Logroscino, Giancarlo | Lotufo, Paulo A | Lunevicius, Raimundas | Lyons, Ronan Anthony | Ma, Stefan | Mahdi, Abbas Ali | Marzan, Melvin Barrientos | Mashal, Mohammad Taufiq | Mazorodze, Tasara T | McGrath, John J | Memish, Ziad A | Mendoza, Walter | Mensah, George A | Meretoja, Atte | Miller, Ted R | Mills, Edward J | Mohammad, Karzan Abdulmuhsin | Mokdad, Ali H | Monasta, Lorenzo | Montico, Marcella | Moore, Ami R | Moschandreas, Joanna | Msemburi, William T | Mueller, Ulrich O | Muszynska, Magdalena M | Naghavi, Mohsen | Naidoo, Kovin S | Narayan, KM Venkat | Nejjari, Chakib | Ng, Marie | Ngirabega, Jean de Dieu | Nieuwenhuijsen, Mark J | Nyakarahuka, Luke | Ohkubo, Takayoshi | Omer, Saad B | Caicedo, Angel J Paternina | Wyk, Victoria Pillay-van | Pope, Dan | Prabhakaran, Dorairaj | Rahman, Sajjad UR | Rana, Saleem M | Reilly, Robert Quentin | Rojas-Rueda, David | Ronfani, Luca | Rushton, Lesley | Saeedi, Mohammad Yahya | Salomon, Joshua | Sampson, Uchechukwu | Santos, Itamar S | Sawhney, Monika | Schmidt, Jürgen C | Nazarova, Marina Shakh | She, Jun | Sheikhbahaei, Sara | Shibuya, Kenji | Shin, Hwashin Hyun | Shishani, Kawkab | Shiue, Ivy | Sigfusdottir, Inga Dora | Singh, Jasvinder A | Skirbekk, Vegard | Sliwa, Karen | Soshnikov, Sergey S | Sposato, Luciano A | Stathopoulou, Vasiliki Kalliopi | Stroumpoulis, Konstantinos | Tabb, Karen M | Talongwa, Roberto Tchio | Teixeira, Carolina Maria | Terkawi, Abdullah Sulieman | Thomson, Alan J | Lyman, Andrew L Thorne | Toyoshima, Hideaki | Dimbuene, Zacharie Tsala | Uwaliraye, Parfait | Uzun, Selen Begüm | Vasankari, Tommi J | Vasconcelos, Ana Maria Nogales | Vlassov, Vasiliy Victorovich | Vollset, Stein Emil | Vos, Theo | Waller, Stephen | Wan, Xia | Weichenthal, Scott | Weiderpass, Elisabete | Weintraub, Robert G | Westerman, Ronny | Wilkinson, James D | Williams, Hywel C | Yang, Yang C | Yentur, Gokalp Kadri | Yip, Paul | Yonemoto, Naohiro | Younis, Mustafa | Yu, Chuanhua | Jin, Kim Yun | Zaki, Maysaa El Sayed | Zhu, Shankuan | Lopez, Alan D | Murray, Christopher J L
Lancet  2014;384(9947):957-979.
Remarkable financial and political efforts have been focused on the reduction of child mortality during the past few decades. Timely measurements of levels and trends in under-5 mortality are important to assess progress towards the Millennium Development Goal 4 (MDG 4) target of reduction of child mortality by two thirds from 1990 to 2015, and to identify models of success.
We generated updated estimates of child mortality in early neonatal (age 0–6 days), late neonatal (7–28 days), postneonatal (29–364 days), childhood (1–4 years), and under-5 (0–4 years) age groups for 188 countries from 1970 to 2013, with more than 29 000 survey, census, vital registration, and sample registration datapoints. We used Gaussian process regression with adjustments for bias and non-sampling error to synthesise the data for under-5 mortality for each country, and a separate model to estimate mortality for more detailed age groups. We used explanatory mixed effects regression models to assess the association between under-5 mortality and income per person, maternal education, HIV child death rates, secular shifts, and other factors. To quantify the contribution of these different factors and birth numbers to the change in numbers of deaths in under-5 age groups from 1990 to 2013, we used Shapley decomposition. We used estimated rates of change between 2000 and 2013 to construct under-5 mortality rate scenarios out to 2030.
We estimated that 6·3 million (95% UI 6·0–6·6) children under-5 died in 2013, a 64% reduction from 17·6 million (17·1–18·1) in 1970. In 2013, child mortality rates ranged from 152·5 per 1000 livebirths (130·6–177·4) in Guinea-Bissau to 2·3 (1·8–2·9) per 1000 in Singapore. The annualised rates of change from 1990 to 2013 ranged from −6·8% to 0·1%. 99 of 188 countries, including 43 of 48 countries in sub-Saharan Africa, had faster decreases in child mortality during 2000–13 than during 1990–2000. In 2013, neonatal deaths accounted for 41·6% of under-5 deaths compared with 37·4% in 1990. Compared with 1990, in 2013, rising numbers of births, especially in sub-Saharan Africa, led to 1·4 million more child deaths, and rising income per person and maternal education led to 0·9 million and 2·2 million fewer deaths, respectively. Changes in secular trends led to 4·2 million fewer deaths. Unexplained factors accounted for only −1% of the change in child deaths. In 30 developing countries, decreases since 2000 have been faster than predicted attributable to income, education, and secular shift alone.
Only 27 developing countries are expected to achieve MDG 4. Decreases since 2000 in under-5 mortality rates are accelerating in many developing countries, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. The Millennium Declaration and increased development assistance for health might have been a factor in faster decreases in some developing countries. Without further accelerated progress, many countries in west and central Africa will still have high levels of under-5 mortality in 2030.
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, US Agency for International Development.
PMCID: PMC4165626  PMID: 24797572
25.  Mutation of Tyrosine 470 of human dopamine transporter is critical for HIV-1 Tat-induced inhibition of dopamine transport and transporter conformational transitions 
HIV-1 Tat protein plays a crucial role in perturbations of the dopamine (DA) system. Our previous studies have demonstrated that Tat decreases DA uptake, and allosterically modulates DA transporter (DAT) function. In the present study, we have found that Tat interacts directly with DAT, leading to inhibition of DAT function. Through computational modeling and simulations, a potential recognition binding site of human DAT (hDAT) for Tat was predicted. Mutation of tyrosine470 (Y470H) attenuated Tat-induced inhibition of DA transport, implicating the functional relevance of this residue for Tat binding to hDAT. Y470H reduced the maximal velocity of [3H]DA uptake without changes in the Km and IC50 values for DA inhibition of DA uptake but increased DA uptake potency for cocaine and GBR12909, suggesting that this residue does not overlap with the binding sites in hDAT for substrate but is critical for these inhibitors. Furthermore, Y470H also led to transporter conformational transitions by affecting zinc modulation of DA uptake and WIN35,428 binding as well as enhancing basal DA efflux. Collectively, these findings demonstrate Tyr470 as a functional recognition residue in hDAT for Tat-induced inhibition of DA transport and transporter conformational transitions. The consequence of mutation at this residue is to block the functional binding of Tat to hDAT without affecting physiological DA transport.
PMCID: PMC3740080  PMID: 23645138
Dopamine transporter; HIV-1 Tat; mutation; uptake; computational modeling; allosteric modulation

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