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1.  Characterization and optimization of ArtinM lectin expression in Escherichia coli 
BMC Biotechnology  2012;12:44.
Background
ArtinM is a d-mannose-specific lectin from Artocarpus integrifolia seeds that induces neutrophil migration and activation, degranulation of mast cells, acceleration of wound healing, induction of interleukin-12 production by macrophages and dendritic cells, and protective T helper 1 immune response against Leishmania major, Leishmania amazonensis and Paracoccidioides brasiliensis infections. Considering the important biological properties of ArtinM and its therapeutic applicability, this study was designed to produce high-level expression of active recombinant ArtinM (rArtinM) in Escherichia coli system.
Results
The ArtinM coding region was inserted in pET29a(+) vector and expressed in E. coli BL21(DE3)-Codon Plus-RP. The conditions for overexpression of soluble ArtinM were optimized testing different parameters: temperatures (20, 25, 30 or 37°C) and shaking speeds (130, 200 or 220 rpm) during induction, concentrations of the induction agent IPTG (0.01-4 mM) and periods of induction (1-19 h). BL21-CodonPlus(DE3)-RP cells induced under the optimized conditions (incubation at 20°C, at a shaking speed of 130 rpm, induction with 0.4 mM IPTG for 19 h) resulted in the accumulation of large amounts of soluble rArtinM. The culture provided 22.4 mg/L of rArtinM, which activity was determined by its one-step purification through affinity chromatography on immobilized d-mannose and glycoarray analysis. Gel filtration showed that rArtinM is monomeric, contrasting with the tetrameric form of the plant native protein (jArtinM). The analysis of intact rArtinM by mass spectrometry revealed a 16,099.5 Da molecular mass, and the peptide mass fingerprint and esi-cid-ms/ms of amino acid sequences of peptides from a tryptic digest covered 41% of the total ArtinM amino acid sequence. In addition, circular dichroism and fluorescence spectroscopy of rArtinM indicated that its global fold comprises β-sheet structure.
Conclusions
Overall, the optimized process to express rArtinM in E. coli provided high amounts of soluble, correctly folded and active recombinant protein, compatible with large scale production of the lectin.
doi:10.1186/1472-6750-12-44
PMCID: PMC3431236  PMID: 22857259
2.  Adverse drug reaction monitoring: support for pharmacovigilance at a tertiary care hospital in Northern Brazil 
Background
Adverse drug reactions (ADRs) are recognised as a common cause of hospital admissions, and they constitute a significant economic burden for hospitals. Hospital-based ADR monitoring and reporting programmes aim to identify and quantify the risks associated with the use of drugs provided in a hospital setting. This information may be useful for identifying and minimising preventable ADRs and may enhance the ability of prescribers to manage ADRs more effectively. The main objectives of this study were to evaluate ADRs that occurred during inpatient stays at the Hospital Geral de Palmas (HGP) in Tocantins, Brazil, and to facilitate the development of a pharmacovigilance service.
Methods
A prospective study was conducted at HGP over a period of 8 months, from January 2009 to August 2009. This observational, cross-sectional, descriptive study was based on an analysis of medical records. Several parameters were utilised in the data evaluation, including patient demographics, drug and reaction characteristics, and reaction outcomes. The reaction severity and predisposing factors were also assessed.
Results
The overall incidence of ADRs in the patient population was 3.1%, and gender was not found to be a risk factor. The highest ADR rate (75.8%) was found in the adult age group 15 to 50 years, and the lowest ADR rate was found in children aged 3 to 13 years (7.4%). Because of the high frequency of ADRs in orthopaedic (25%), general medicine (22%), and oncology (16%) patients, improved control of the drugs used in these specialties is required. Additionally, the nurse team (52.7%) registered the most ADRs in medical records, most likely due to the job responsibilities of nurses. As expected, the most noticeable ADRs occurred in skin tissues, with such ADRs are more obvious to medical staff, with rashes being the most common reactions. Metamizole, tramadol, and vancomycin were responsible for 21, 11.6, and 8.4% of ADRs, respectively. The majority of ADRs had moderate severity (58.9%), thus requiring intervention. Type A reactions were the most common (82.1%). At least one predisposing factor was present in 79.9% of the reports examined, and the most common predisposing factor was polypharmacy.
Conclusions
The results obtained will contribute to the development of strategies for the pharmacovigilance service at HGP and other hospitals throughout the country, which will improve the quality of ADR reporting and ensure safer drug use in Brazilian hospitals.
doi:10.1186/2050-6511-14-5
PMCID: PMC3554560  PMID: 23298396

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