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1.  Decreased Cezanne expression is associated with the progression and poor prognosis in hepatocellular carcinoma 
Background
Deubiquitinases, such as CYLD, A20 and Cezanne, have emerged as negative regulators that balance the strength and duration of NF-κB signaling through feedback mechanisms. However, how these serial feedback loops are simultaneously disrupted in cancer remains unclear. The purpose of this study is to investigate the correlation of Cezanne expression with clinicopathological/prognostic value in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).
Methods
The expression levels of Cezanne and matrix metallopeptidase 9 (MMP-9) were assessed by immunohistochemistry in 230 HCC specimens. The correlation between expression of Cezanne and MMP-9, clinicopathological/prognostic value in hepatocellular carcinoma was examined.
Results
Cezanne reduction in HCC was significantly associated with larger tumor, satellite nodule, vascular invasion, TNM stage, BCLC stage and early recurrence. Kaplan-Meier analysis showed that Cezanne was a great predictive factor for overall survival (OS) and time to recurrence (TTR). The expression of Cezanne was decreased in TNM and BCLC stage-dependent manner. In addition, Cezanne reduction was associated with poor prognosis in patients subgroups stratified by tumor size, tumor differentiation, TNM stage and BCLC stage. Moreover, Cezanne was negatively associated with MMP-9 among 230 HCC samples. Patients who had Cezanne downregulation, in which cancer cells showed high invasiveness, had shorter TTR and poor OS. Furthermore, the coindex of Cezanne and preoperative serum AFP levels was significantly correlated with OS and TTR.
Conclusion
Cezanne has a pivotal role in tumor progression and prognosis, and may act as a potential prognostic biomarker for survival in HCC patients.
doi:10.1186/s12967-015-0396-1
PMCID: PMC4329219  PMID: 25638165
Hepatocellular carcinoma; Cezanne; MMP-9; Aggressiveness; Prognosis
2.  Protective immunity induced by peptides of AMA1, RON2 and RON4 containing T-and B-cell epitopes via an intranasal route against toxoplasmosis in mice 
Parasites & Vectors  2015;8:15.
Background
Toxoplasma gondii is a ubiquitous protozoan intracellular parasite, the causative agent of toxoplasmosis, and a worldwide zoonosis. Apical membrane antigen-1 (AMA1) and rhoptry neck protein (RON2, RON4) are involved in the invasion of T. gondii.
Methods
This study chemically synthesized peptides of TgAMA1, TgRON2 and TgRON4 that contained the T- and B-cell epitopes predicted by bioinformatics analysis. We evaluated the systemic response by proliferation, cytokine and antibody measurements as well as the mucosal response by examining the levels of antigen-specific secretory IgA (SIgA) in the nasal, vesical and intestinal washes obtained from mice after nasal immunization with single (AMA1, RON2, RON4) or mixtures of peptides (A1 + R2, A1 + R4, R2 + R4, A1 + R2 + R4). We also assessed the parasite burdens in the liver and brain as well as the survival of mice challenged with a virulent strain.
Results
The results showed that the mice immunized with single or mixed peptides produced effective mucosal and systemic immune responses with a high level of specific antibody responses, a strong lymphoproliferative response and significant levels of gamma interferon (IFN-γ), interleukin-2 (IL-2) and IL-4 production. These mice also elicited partial protection against acute and chronic T. gondii infection. Moreover, our study indicated that mixtures of peptides, especially the A1 + R2 mixture, were more powerful and efficient than any other single peptides.
Conclusions
These results demonstrated that intranasal immunisation with peptides of AMA1, RON2 and RON4 containing T- and B-cell epitopes can partly protect mice against toxoplasmosis, and a combination of peptides as a mucosal vaccine strategy is essential for future Toxoplasma vaccine development.
doi:10.1186/s13071-015-0636-5
PMCID: PMC4297402  PMID: 25582167
Toxoplasma gondii; AMA1; RON2; RON4; Peptide epitope; Mucosal vaccine
3.  Transcriptional analysis of porcine circovirus-like virus P1 
BMC Veterinary Research  2014;10(1):287.
Background
Recently identified porcine circovirus-like virus P1 has the smallest DNA viral genome. In this study, we identified the viral genes and their corresponding mRNA transcripts.
Results
The RNAs of P1, synthesized in porcine kidney cells, were examined with northern blotting and PCR analyses.
Eight virus-specific RNAs were detected. Four mRNAs (open reading frames (ORFs) 1, 2, 4, and 5) are encoded by the viral (−) strand and four (ORFs 3, 6, 7, and 8) are encoded by the viral (+) strand. All proteins encoded by the ORFs of the P1 virus are less than 50 amino acids in length, except that encoded by ORF1 (113 amino acids).
Conclusions
We show a very complex viral transcription pattern in P1-infected cells.
doi:10.1186/s12917-014-0287-3
PMCID: PMC4258304  PMID: 25440084
Porcine circovirus like virus P1; Transcriptional analysis; Northern blotting; RACE
4.  Anthraquinonyl glycoside facilitates the standardization of graphene electrodes for the impedance detection of lectins 
Background
Construction of electrochemical impedance sensors by the self-assembly technique has become a promising strategy for the ‘label-free’ detection of protein-ligand interactions. However, previous impedance sensors are devoid of an inherent electrochemical signal, which limits the standardization of the sensors for protein recognition in a reproducible manner.
Results
We designed and synthesized an anthraquinonyl glycoside (AG) where the anthraquinone (AQ) moiety can bind to the surface of a graphene-based working electrode while the glycoside serving as a ligand for lectin. By measuring the inherent voltammetric signal of AQ, the glycosides decorated on the working electrode could be simply quantified to obtain electrodes with a unified signal window. Subsequently, impedance analysis showed that the ‘standardized’ electrodes gave a reproducible electrochemical response to a selective lectin with no signal variation in the presence of unselective proteins.
Conclusion
Anthraquinone-modified ligands could be used to facilitate the standardization of electrochemical impedance sensors for the reproducible, selective analysis of ligand-protein interactions.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s13065-014-0067-y) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1186/s13065-014-0067-y
PMCID: PMC4245500  PMID: 25435901
Anthraquinone; Graphene; Glycoside; Lectin; Electrochemistry; EIS; Standardization
5.  Anthraquinonyl glycoside facilitates the standardization of graphene electrodes for the impedance detection of lectins 
Background
Construction of electrochemical impedance sensors by the self-assembly technique has become a promising strategy for the ‘label-free’ detection of protein-ligand interactions. However, previous impedance sensors are devoid of an inherent electrochemical signal, which limits the standardization of the sensors for protein recognition in a reproducible manner.
Results
We designed and synthesized an anthraquinonyl glycoside (AG) where the anthraquinone (AQ) moiety can bind to the surface of a graphene-based working electrode while the glycoside serving as a ligand for lectin. By measuring the inherent voltammetric signal of AQ, the glycosides decorated on the working electrode could be simply quantified to obtain electrodes with a unified signal window. Subsequently, impedance analysis showed that the ‘standardized’ electrodes gave a reproducible electrochemical response to a selective lectin with no signal variation in the presence of unselective proteins.
Conclusion
Anthraquinone-modified ligands could be used to facilitate the standardization of electrochemical impedance sensors for the reproducible, selective analysis of ligand-protein interactions.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s13065-014-0067-y) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1186/s13065-014-0067-y
PMCID: PMC4245500  PMID: 25435901
Anthraquinone; Graphene; Glycoside; Lectin; Electrochemistry; EIS; Standardization
6.  The Molecular Mechanism of Rhein in Diabetic Nephropathy 
Diabetic nephropathy (DN) is characterized by unclear pathogenesis. Recent medical data shows that the incidence of DN rises year by year. Rhein is the main compositions of rhubarb, a traditional Chinese medicinal plant, which plays an active role in kidney protection. The prophylaxis and phytotherapeutic effects of rhein are due to its anti-inflammatory and antifibrosis properties. Here, we shed light on the renal protective role of rhein in diabetes mellitus (DM) with a particular focus on the molecular basis of this effect.
doi:10.1155/2014/487097
PMCID: PMC4243766  PMID: 25435889
7.  Testing Stem Cell Therapy in a Rat Model of Inflammatory Bowel Disease: Role of Bone Marrow Stem Cells and Stem Cell Factor in Mucosal Regeneration 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(10):e107891.
Background
The gastrointestinal (GI) mucosal cells turnover regularly under physiological conditions, which may be stimulated in various pathological situations including inflammation. Local epithelial stem cells appear to play a major role in such mucosal renewal or pathological regeneration. Less is clear about the involvement of multipotent stem cells from blood in GI repair. We attempted to explore a role of bone marrow mesenchymal stromal cells (BMMSCs) and soluble stem cell factor (SCF) in GI mucosa regeneration in a rat model of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD).
Methods
BMMSCs labelled with the fluorescent dye PKH26 from donor rats were transfused into rats suffering indomethacin-induced GI injury. Experimental effects by BMMSCs transplant and SCF were determined by morphometry of intestinal mucosa, double labeling of PKH26 positive BMMSCs with endogenous proliferative and intestinal cell markers, and western blot and PCR analyses of the above molecular markers in the recipient rats relative to controls.
Results
PKH26 positive BMMSCs were found in the recipient mucosa, partially colocalizing with the proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), Lgr5, Musashi-1 and ephrin-B3. mRNA and protein levels of PCNA, Lgr5, Musashi-1 and ephrin-B3 were elevated in the intestine in BMMSCs-treated rats, most prominent in the BMMSCs-SCF co-treatment group. The mucosal layer and the crypt layer of the small intestine were thicker in BMMSCs-treated rats, more evident in the BMMSCs-SCF co-treatment group.
Conclusion
BMMSCs and SCF participate in but may play a synergistic role in mucosal cell regeneration following experimentally induced intestinal injury. Bone marrow stem cell therapy and SCF administration may be of therapeutic value in IBD.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0107891
PMCID: PMC4195572  PMID: 25309991
8.  Reduced Topological Efficiency in Cortical-Basal Ganglia Motor Network of Parkinson's Disease: A Resting State fMRI Study 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(10):e108124.
Parkinson's disease (PD) is mainly characterized by dopamine depletion of the cortico-basal ganglia (CBG) motor circuit. Given that dopamine dysfunction could affect functional brain network efficiency, the present study utilized resting-state fMRI (rs-fMRI) and graph theoretical approach to investigate the topological efficiency changes of the CBG motor network in patients with PD during a relatively hypodopaminergic state (12 hours after a last dose of dopamimetic treatment). We found that PD compared with controls had remarkable decreased efficiency in the CBG motor network, with the most pronounced changes observed in rostral supplementary motor area (pre-SMA), caudal SMA (SMA-proper), primary motor cortex (M1), primary somatosensory cortex (S1), thalamus (THA), globus pallidus (GP), and putamen (PUT). Furthermore, reduced efficiency in pre-SMA, M1, THA and GP was significantly correlated with Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) motor scores in PD patients. Together, our results demonstrate that individuals with PD appear to be less effective at information transfer within the CBG motor pathway, which provides a novel perspective on neurobiological explanation for the motor symptoms in patients. These findings are in line with the pathophysiology of PD, suggesting that network efficiency metrics may be used to identify and track the pathology of PD.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0108124
PMCID: PMC4184784  PMID: 25279557
9.  Partial Protective Effect of Intranasal Immunization with Recombinant Toxoplasma gondii Rhoptry Protein 17 against Toxoplasmosis in Mice 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(9):e108377.
Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii) is an obligate intracellular protozoan parasite that infects a variety of mammals, including humans. An effective vaccine for this parasite is therefore needed. In this study, RH strain T. gondii rhoptry protein 17 was expressed in bacteria as a fusion with glutathione S-transferase (GST) and the recombinant proteins (rTgROP17) were purified via GST-affinity chromatography. BALB/c mice were nasally immunised with rTgROP17, and induction of immune responses and protection against chronic and lethal T. gondii infections were investigated. The results revealed that mice immunised with rTgROP17 produced high levels of specific anti-rTgROP17 IgGs and a mixed IgG1/IgG2a response of IgG2a predominance. The systemic immune response was associated with increased production of Th1 (IFN-γand IL-2) and Th2 (IL-4) cytokines, and enhanced lymphoproliferation (stimulation index, SI) in the mice immunised with rTgROP17. Strong mucosal immune responses with increased secretion of TgROP17-specific secretory IgA (SIgA) in nasal, vaginal and intestinal washes were also observed in these mice. The vaccinated mice displayed apparent protection against chronic RH strain infection as evidenced by their lower liver and brain parasite burdens (59.17% and 49.08%, respectively) than those of the controls. The vaccinated mice also exhibited significant protection against lethal infection of the virulent RH strain (survival increased by 50%) compared to the controls. Our data demonstrate that rTgROP17 can trigger strong systemic and mucosal immune responses against T. gondii and that ROP17 is a promising candidate vaccine for toxoplasmosis.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0108377
PMCID: PMC4177930  PMID: 25255141
10.  Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) C677T and A1298C polymorphisms and the risk of primary Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) in a Chinese population 
Cancer causes & control : CCC  2007;18(6):665-675.
Objectives
Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR), which is expressed in the liver, may be involved in both DNA methylation and DNA synthesis. It is also indicated as a potential risk factor of liver cancer in patients with chronic liver disease. To date, no study has been conducted on MTHFR and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) using a population-based design. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of polymorphisms of the MTHFR gene on the risk of primary liver cancer and their possible effect modifications on various environmental risk factors.
Methods
A population-based case–control study was conducted in Taixing, China. MTHFR C677T and A1298C were assayed by PCR-RFLP techniques.
Results
The frequency of MTHFR 677 C/C wild homo-zygotes genotype was 25.8% in cases, which was lower than that in controls (34.5%). The adjusted odds ratios (ORs) for the MTHFR 677 C/T and T/T genotype were 1.66(95% CI: 1.06–2.61), 1.21(95% CI: 0.65–2.28) respectively when compared with the MTHFR 677 C/C genotype. Subjects carrying any T genotype have the increased risk of 1.55(95% CI: 1.01–2.40) for development of primary hepatocellular carcinoma. A high degree of linkage disequilibrium was observed between the C677T and A1298C polymorphisms, with the D′ of 0.887 and p < 0.01. The MTHFR 677 any T genotype was suggested to have potentially more than multiplicative interactions with raw water drinking with p-value for adjusted interaction of 0.03.
Conclusion
We observed that the MTHFR 677 C/T genotype was associated with an increased risk of primary liver cancer in a Chinese population. The polymorphism of MTHFR 677 might modify the effects of raw water drinking on the risk of primary hepatocellular carcinoma.
doi:10.1007/s10552-007-9012-x
PMCID: PMC4165489  PMID: 17503006
MTHFR (5, 10-methylenetetralydrofolate reductase); Genetic polymorphism; Primary liver cancer; Case–control study; Effect modification
11.  FEN1 -69G>A and 4150G>T polymorphisms and cancer risk in Chinese population 
Scientific Reports  2014;4:6183.
Previous studies have investigated the associations between FEN1 -69G>A (rs174538) and 4150G>T (rs4246215) polymorphisms and cancer risk in Chinese population. However, the results were controversial. We therefore carried out a meta-analysis to derive a more precise estimation of the associations. PubMed Database was systematically searched to identify potentially eligible literatures. Crude odds ratios (ORs) and their 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were used to assess the strength of associations between FEN1 -69G>A and 4150G>T polymorphisms and cancer risk in Chinese population. A total of 4 articles, including 5,108 cases and 6,382 controls, were used to evaluate the effect of the two polymorphisms on cancer risk. The pooled ORs indicated that FEN1 -69G>A and 4150G>T polymorphisms were significantly associated with cancer risk in Chinese population. In stratified analyses by cancer type, significant associations were also observed in digestive system cancer. In addition, haplotypes consisting of -69G>A and 4150G>T polymorphisms were closely associated with cancer risk. Interestingly, significantly correlation between FEN1 -69G>A polymorphism and mRNA expression was observed. In conclusion, this meta-analysis suggests that FEN1 -69G>A and 4150G>T polymorphisms may be associated with cancer susceptibility in Chinese population. However, further investigation on large population and different ethnicities are warranted.
doi:10.1038/srep06183
PMCID: PMC4143769  PMID: 25154853
12.  7SL RNA represses p53 translation by competing with HuR 
Nucleic Acids Research  2014;42(15):10099-10111.
Noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) and RNA-binding proteins are potent post-transcriptional regulators of gene expression. The ncRNA 7SL is upregulated in cancer cells, but its impact upon the phenotype of cancer cells is unknown. Here, we present evidence that 7SL forms a partial hybrid with the 3′-untranslated region (UTR) of TP53 mRNA, which encodes the tumor suppressor p53. The interaction of 7SL with TP53 mRNA reduced p53 translation, as determined by analyzing p53 expression levels, nascent p53 translation and TP53 mRNA association with polysomes. Silencing 7SL led to increased binding of HuR to TP53 mRNA, an interaction that led to the promotion of p53 translation and increased p53 abundance. We propose that the competition between 7SL and HuR for binding to TP53 3′UTR contributes to determining the magnitude of p53 translation, in turn affecting p53 levels and the growth-suppressive function of p53. Our findings suggest that targeting 7SL may be effective in the treatment of cancers with reduced p53 levels.
doi:10.1093/nar/gku686
PMCID: PMC4150789  PMID: 25123665
13.  Deletion of the Igf1 Gene: Suppressive Effects on Adult Leydig Cell Development 
Journal of andrology  2010;31(4):379-387.
Deletion of the insulin-like growth factor 1 (Igf1) gene was shown in previous studies to result in reduced numbers of Leydig cells in the testes of 35-day-old mice, and in reduced circulating testosterone levels. In the current study, we asked whether deletion of the Igf1 gene affects the number, proliferation, and/or steroidogenic function of some or all of the precursor cell types in the developmental sequence that leads to the establishment of adult Leydig cells (ALCs). Decreased numbers of cells in the Leydig cell lineage (ie, 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase–positive cells) were seen in testes of postnatal day (PND) 14–90 Igf1−/− mice compared with age-matched Igf1+/+ controls. The development of ALCs proceeds from stem Leydig cells (SLCs) through progenitor Leydig cells (PLCs) and immature Leydig cells (ILCs). The bromodeoxyuridine labeling index of putative SLCs was similar in the Igf1−/− and Igf1+/+ mice. In contrast, the labeling index of PLCs was reduced in the Igf1−/− mice on each day of PND 14 through PND 35, and that of more mature Leydig cells (referred to herein as LCs, a combination of ILCs plus ALCs) was reduced from PND 21 through PND 56. In Igf1−/− mice that received recombinant IGF-I, the labeling indices of PLCs and LCs were similar to those of age-matched Igf1+/+ mice, indicating that the reductions in the labeling indices seen in the PLCs and LCs of the Igf1−/− mice were a consequence of reduced IGF-I. On each day of PND 21 through PND 90, testicular testosterone concentrations were significantly reduced in the Igf1−/− mice, as were the expressions of testis-specific mRNAs involved in steroidogenesis, including Star, Cyp11a1, and Cyp17a1. The increased expression of the gene for 5α-reductase (Srd5a1) in adult Igf1−/− testes suggests that the depletion of Igf1 might suppress or delay Leydig cell maturation. These observations, taken together, indicate that the reduced numbers of Leydig cells in the adult testes of Igf1−/− mice result at least in part from altered proliferation and differentiation of ALC precursor cells, but not of the stem cells that give rise to these cells.
doi:10.2164/jandrol.109.008680
PMCID: PMC4103413  PMID: 20203337
Developmental lineage; proliferation; testosterone
14.  Transforming growth factor-β1 reduces apoptosis via autophagy activation in hepatic stellate cells 
Molecular Medicine Reports  2014;10(3):1282-1288.
Autophagy is a metabolic process that is important in fibrogenesis, in which cellular components are degraded by lysosomal machinery. Transforming growth factor β1 (TGF-β1) is a potent fibrogenic cytokine involved in liver fibrosis; however, it remains elusive whether autophagy is regulated by TGF-β1 in this process. In the present study, the function of TGF-β1-mediated autophagy in the proliferation and apoptosis of hepatic stellate cells (HSCs) was investigated. A rat HSC cell line (HSC-T6) was incubated with or without TGF-β1 followed by bafilomycin A1, and microtubule-associated proteins 1A/1B light chain 3 (LC3) small interfering (si)RNA was used to inhibit autophagy in order to assess the association between TGF-β1 and autophagy. HSC-T6 cell transient transfection was accomplished with a pLVX-AcGFP-N1-rLC3B-encoding plasmid. An MTS assay and flow cytometry were utilized to detect proliferation and apoptosis of HSC-T6 cells. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction, immunofluorescence and western blot analysis were used to detect the presence of activation markers. Proliferation was increased and apoptosis was reduced in HSC-T6 cells treated with TGF-β1 compared with cells subjected to serum deprivation. However, when HSC-T6 cells were treated with bafilomycin A1 and LC3 siRNA, increased apoptosis and reduced proliferation were observed. In addition, protein and mRNA expression levels of the autophagy marker LC3 were significantly increased. GFP-LC3 punctate markings were more prolific following TGF-β1 treatment of HSC-T6 cells, indicating that TGF-β1 may rescue HSC-T6 cells from serum deprivation and reduce apoptosis via autophagy induction. The present study elucidated the possible functions of TGF-β1-mediated autophagy in the pathological process of liver fibrosis.
doi:10.3892/mmr.2014.2383
PMCID: PMC4121427  PMID: 25059289
transforming growth factor-β1; hepatic stellate cell; autophagy; apoptosis
15.  A ‘Clicked' Tetrameric Hydroxamic Acid Glycopeptidomimetic Antagonizes Sugar-Lectin Interactions On The Cellular Level 
Scientific Reports  2014;4:5513.
A tetrameric N-acetyl galactosaminyl (GalNAc) peptidomimetic was constructed by N-acetylation of repeating proline-based hydroxamic acid units, followed by a convergent ‘click chemistry' coupling. This novel glycopeptidomimetic was determined to effectively antagonize the interaction between a transmembrane hepatic lectin and GalNAc on the cellular level.
doi:10.1038/srep05513
PMCID: PMC4076733  PMID: 24981800
16.  Resveratrol protects vascular smooth muscle cells against high glucose-induced oxidative stress and cell proliferation in vitro 
Background
Resveratrol exhibits beneficial effects against numerous degenerative diseases at different stages of pathogenesis. This study investigated potential mechanisms and resveratrol effects on high glucose (HG)-induced oxidative stress (30 mM d-glucose, 30 min) and cell proliferation (30 mM d-glucose, 24 h) in vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs).
Material/Methods
Intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation was detected by 2′,7′-dichlorofluorescein diacetate (DCFH-DA). Total antioxidant capacity (TAC), malonyldialdehyde (MDA), glutathione (GSH), and superoxide dismutase (SOD) were measured to evaluate oxidative stress. VSMC proliferation was measured by CCK-8 assays and through propidium iodide-based cell cycle analysis. Expression of NAD(P)H oxidase, proliferation proteins, and cell signalling were assessed by immunoblot analysis.
Results
Co-treatment of primary cultures of VSMCs with 1–100 μM resveratrol decreased HG-induced ROS overproduction (P<0.05). Resveratrol also abolished HG-induced phosphorylation of oxidase subunit p47 phox and reduced HG-induced cyclin D1, cyclin E, and PCNA expression in a concentration-dependent manner. Furthermore, resveratrol (10 μM) attenuated HG-induced phosphorylation of Akt, p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), ERK 1/2, and JNK1/2 without affecting total levels. HG stimulation enhanced downstream IκB-α phosphorylation and NF-κB activity, and resveratrol repressed these effects.
Conclusions
Resveratrol inhibits HG-induced oxidative stress and VSMC proliferation by suppressing ROS generation, NADPH oxidase, Akt phosphorylation, p38 MAPK/JNK/ERK phosphorylation, and IκB-α and NF-κB activities.
doi:10.12659/MSMBR.890858
PMCID: PMC4095779  PMID: 24971582
Cell Proliferation; Grape Seed Extract; Hyperglycemia; Muscle; Smooth; Vascular; Oxidative Stress
17.  Overexpression of MAGE-D4 in colorectal cancer is a potentially prognostic biomarker and immunotherapy target 
Melanoma-associated antigen D4 (MAGE-D4) is a novel member of MAGE family. This study aimed to examine the expression and immunogenicity of MAGE-D4 in colorectal cancer (CRC) to determine its potential as a prognosis and immunotherapeutic target. The expression of MAGE-D4 mRNA and protein was determined by RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry (IHC) in CRCs with paired adjacent non-tumor tissues, colorectal adenomas and normal colorectal tissues, respectively. Sera from 64 CRC patients were tested for MAGE-D4 antibody by ELISA. MAGE-D4 mRNA was more frequently expressed in CRCs (76.7%, 46/60) than in adjacent non-tumor tissues (15.0%, 9/60). MAGE-D4 protein was detected in all the CRC tissues tested, 70.0% of which showed high expression. There was no MAGE-D4 protein detected in any paired adjacent non-tumor tissue. No MAGE-D4 expression was found in colorectal adenomas and normal colorectal tissues by either RT-PCR or immunohistochemistry. Patients with high MAGE-D4 protein expression had significantly shorter overall survival than those with low MAGE-D4 protein expression (median, 68.6 vs 122.2 months; P=0.030). Furthermore, multivariate analysis exhibited high MAGE-D4 protein expression had a trend toward an independent prognostic factor (hazard ratio: 6.124; P=0.050). Humoral immunity to MAGE-D4 was detected in 12 of 64 (18.8%) CRC patients’ sera but not in 77 healthy donors. There was no correlation between MAGE-D4 expression, serum antibody and clinicopathological parameters. These findings suggest MAGE-D4 may serve as a potentially prognostic biomarker and an attractive target of immunotherapy in CRC.
PMCID: PMC4129003  PMID: 25120768
Melanoma-associated antigen; MAGE-D4; colorectal cancer; serum immunoreactivity
18.  Recovering Directed Networks in Neuroimaging Datasets Using Partially Conditioned Granger Causality 
Brain Connectivity  2013;3(3):294-301.
Abstract
Recovering directed pathways of information transfer between brain areas is an important issue in neuroscience and helps to shed light on the brain function in several physiological and cognitive states. Granger causality (GC) analysis is a valuable tool to detect directed dynamical connectivity, and it is being increasingly used. Unfortunately, this approach encounters some limitations in particularly when applied to neuroimaging datasets, often consisting in short and noisy data and for which redundancy plays an important role. In this article, we address one of these limitations, namely, the computational and conceptual problems arising when conditional GC, necessary to disambiguate direct and mediated influences, is used on short and noisy datasets of many variables, as it is typically the case in some electroencephalography (EEG) protocols and in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). We show that considering GC in the framework of information theory we can limit the conditioning to a limited number of variables chosen as the most informative, obtaining more stable and reliable results both in EEG and fMRI data.
doi:10.1089/brain.2013.0142
PMCID: PMC3685317  PMID: 23530810
EEG; effective connectivity; information transfer; partially conditioned Granger causality; redundancy; resting-state fMRI
19.  Left and Right Amygdala - Mediofrontal Cortical Functional Connectivity Is Differentially Modulated by Harm Avoidance 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(4):e95740.
Background
The left and right amygdalae are key regions distinctly involved in emotion-regulation processes. Individual differences, such as personality features, may affect the implicated neurocircuits. The lateralized amygdala affective processing linked with the temperament dimension Harm Avoidance (HA) remains poorly understood. Resting state functional connectivity imaging (rsFC) may provide more insight into these neuronal processes.
Methods
In 56 drug-naive healthy female subjects, we have examined the relationship between the personality dimension HA on lateralized amygdala rsFC.
Results
Across all subjects, left and right amygdalae were connected with distinct regions mainly within the ipsilateral hemisphere. Females scoring higher on HA displayed stronger left amygdala rsFC with ventromedial prefrontal cortical (vmPFC) regions involved in affective disturbances. In high HA scorers, we also observed stronger right amygdala rsFC with the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex (dmPFC), which is implicated in negative affect regulation.
Conclusions
In healthy females, left and right amygdalae seem implicated in distinct mPFC brain networks related to HA and may represent a vulnerability marker for sensitivity to stress and anxiety (disorders).
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0095740
PMCID: PMC3997418  PMID: 24760033
20.  Nasal mucosal inhalation of amyloid-beta peptide 3–10 defective adenovirus attenuates cytotoxicity induced by beta-amyloid (1–42) 
Neural Regeneration Research  2014;9(8):872-877.
Three-month-old Alzheimer's disease model transgenic mice were immunized with Aβ1–42 Plp-Adenovirus [Ad]-X-CMV-(Aβ3–10)10-CpG [AdCpG-(Aβ3–10)10] or AdCpG virus fluid via nasal mucosal inhalation, respectively. ELISA analysis of serum showed Aβ42 antibody titers were significantly increased in mice immunized with Aβ1–42 and AdCpG-(Aβ3–10)10. Concanavalin A and AdCpG-(Aβ3–10)10 stimulation significantly increased the number of proliferating spleen cells cultured from AdCpG(Aβ3–10)10 and Aβ42 groups compared with the control group. In the AdCpG(Aβ3–10)10 group, levels of interleukin (IL)-4 and IL-10 were increased, while those of IL-2 and interferon-γ were decreased. In the Aβ42 group, levels of IL-4, IL-10, IL-2 and interferon-γ were all increased. Experimental findings indicate that AdCpG-(Aβ3–10)10 vaccine can produce strong T helper 2 (Th2) humoral immune responses in addition to the production of Aβ42 antibody. The cellular immunologic response was weak and avoided Aβ1–42-mediated cytotoxicity.
doi:10.4103/1673-5374.131605
PMCID: PMC4146261  PMID: 25206904
nerve regeneration; neurodegenerative disease; Alzheimer's disease; immunotherapy; amyloid-beta peptide vaccine; cytokines; humoral immunity; inflammation; NSFC grant; neural regeneration
21.  Complete Genome Sequence of Paenibacillus polymyxa SQR-21, a Plant Growth-Promoting Rhizobacterium with Antifungal Activity and Rhizosphere Colonization Ability 
Genome Announcements  2014;2(2):e00281-14.
Here we report the complete genome sequence of a plant growth-promoting rhizobacterium (PGPR), Paenibacillus polymyxa SQR-21, which consists of one circular chromosome of 5,828,438 bp with 5,024 coding sequences (CDS). The data presented highlight multiple sets of functional genes associated with its plant-beneficial characteristics.
doi:10.1128/genomeA.00281-14
PMCID: PMC3983308  PMID: 24723719
22.  Substitution Pattern Reverses the Fluorescence Response of Coumarin Glycoligands upon Coordination with Silver (I) 
Scientific Reports  2014;4:4252.
Development of sugar-based fluorescence (FL) chemo-probes is of much interest since sugars are biocompatible, water-soluble and structurally rigid natural starting materials. We report here that fluorescent glycoligands with two triazolyl coumarin moieties installed onto the different positions of an identical glucosyl nucleus exert completely reversed optical response to a metal ion. C3,4-, C2,3- and C4,6-di-substituted coumarin glucosides synthesized by a click reaction similarly showed a selective FL variation in the presence of silver (I) among a range of metal cations in an aqueous solution. However, the variation was determined to be converse: the FL of the C3,4-ligand was quenched whereas that of the C2,3/C4,6-ligand tangibly enhanced. FL and NMR titrations suggested that this divergence was due to the distinct complexation modes of the conformationally constrained ligands with the ion. The optimal motifs of the ligand-ion complexation were predicted by a computational simulation. Finally, the C2,3-ligand was determined to be of low cytotoxicity and applicable in the FL imaging of silver ions internalized by live cells.
doi:10.1038/srep04252
PMCID: PMC3939457  PMID: 24584644
23.  Top3β is an RNA topoisomerase that works with Fragile X syndrome protein to promote synapse formation 
Nature neuroscience  2013;16(9):10.1038/nn.3479.
Topoisomerases are crucial to solve DNA topological problems, but they have not been linked to RNA metabolism. Here we show that human topoisomerase 3β (Top3β) is an RNA topoisomerase that biochemically and genetically interacts with FMRP, a protein deficient in Fragile X syndrome and known to regulate translation of mRNAs important for neuronal function and autism. Notably, the FMRP-Top3β interaction is abolished by a disease-associated FMRP mutation, suggesting that Top3β may contribute to pathogenesis of mental disorders. Top3β binds multiple mRNAs encoded by genes with neuronal functions related to schizophrenia and autism. Expression of one such gene, ptk2/FAK, is reduced in neuromuscular junctions of Top3β mutant flies. Synapse formation is defective in Top3β mutant flies and mice, as observed in FMRP mutant animals. Our findings suggest that Top3β acts as an RNA topoisomerase and works with FMRP to promote expression of mRNAs critical for neurodevelopment and mental health.
doi:10.1038/nn.3479
PMCID: PMC3853347  PMID: 23912945
schizophrenia; autism; topoisomerase; Fragile X syndrome; Top3β; TDRD3; synapse
24.  Effects of Obstructive Sleep Apnea on Cardiac Function and Clinical Outcomes in Chinese Patients with ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction 
The Scientific World Journal  2014;2014:908582.
Aim. The objective of this study was to investigate the influence of OSA on cardiac function in Chinese patients with ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) and determine the prognostic impact of OSA among these patients. Methods. In this retrospective study, 198 STEMI patients were enrolled. Doppler echocardiography was performed to detect the effect of OSA on cardiac function. Major adverse cardiac events (MACE) and cardiac mortality were analyzed to determine whether OSA was a clinical prognostic factor; its prognostic impact was then assessed adjusting for other covariates. Results. The echocardiographic results showed that the myocardium of STEMI patients with OSA appeared to be more hypertrophic and with a poorer cardiac function compared with non-OSA STEMI patients. A Kaplan-Meier survival analysis revealed significantly higher cumulative incidence of MACE and cardiac mortality in the OSA group compared with that in the non-OSA group during a mean follow-up of 24 months. Multivariate Cox regression analysis revealed that OSA was an independent risk factor for MACE and cardiac mortality. Conclusion. These results indicate that the OSA is a powerful predictor of decreased survival and exerts negative prognostic impact on cardiac function in STEMI patients.
doi:10.1155/2014/908582
PMCID: PMC3948503  PMID: 24701193
25.  Expression characteristics of CDC20 in gastric cancer and its correlation with poor prognosis 
The cell division cycle 20 homolog (CDC20) expression is increased in diverse human cancers and plays a vital role in tumorigenesis and progression. However, the clinical significance of CDC20 expression in gastric cancer (GC) remains largely unknown. The aim of this study was to investigate the clinicopathologic features and prognostic significance of CDC20 in GC. The CDC20 mRNA expression was measured by quantitative real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR). Immunohistochemistry (IHC) was used to detect the expression of CDC20 protein in 131 clinicopathologically characterized GC cases. The relationship between CDC20 expression and clinicopathological features was analyzed by appropriate statistics. Kaplan-Meier analysis and Cox proportional hazards regression models were used to investigate the correlation between CDC20 expression and prognosis of GC patients. The relative mRNA expression of CDC20 were significantly higher in GC tumor tissues than in the corresponding noncancerous tissues (P<0.001). Simultaneously, CDC20 protein expression was positively correlated with tumor size (P=0.02), histological grade (P=0.037), lymph node involvement (P=0.009), and TNM stage (P=0.015). Furthermore, Kaplan-Meier analysis indicated that patients with high CDC20 expression had poor overall survival (P<0.001). Multivariate analysis showed that high CDC20 expression was an independent predictor of overall survival. In conclusion, our data indicated that CDC20 upregulation was associated with aggressive progression and poor prognosis in GC. CDC20 was identified for the first time as an independent marker for predicting the clinical outcome of GC patients.
PMCID: PMC3925919  PMID: 24551295
CDC20; immunohistochemistry; gastric cancer

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