The crystal structure of human-heart-type fatty-acid-binding protein in complex with anilinonaphthalene-8-sulfonate was solved at 2.15 Å resolution revealing the detailed binding mechanism of the fluorescent probe 1-anilinonaphthalene-8-sulfonate.
Heart-type fatty-acid-binding protein (FABP3), which is a cytosolic protein abundantly found in cardiomyocytes, plays a role in trafficking fatty acids throughout cellular compartments by reversibly binding intracellular fatty acids with relatively high affinity. The fluorescent probe 1-anilinonaphthalene-8-sulfonate (ANS) is extensively utilized for examining the interaction of ligands with fatty-acid-binding proteins. The X-ray structure of FABP3 was determined in the presence of ANS and revealed the detailed ANS-binding mechanism. Furthermore, four water molecules were clearly identified in the binding cavity. Through these water molecules, the bound ANS molecule forms indirect hydrogen-bond interactions with FABP3. The adipocyte-type fatty-acid-binding protein (FABP4) exhibits 67% sequence identity with FABP3 and its crystal structure is almost the same as that of FABP3. However, FABP4 can bind with a higher affinity to ANS than FABP3. To understand the difference in their ligand specificities, a structural comparison was performed between FABP3–ANS and FABP4–ANS complexes. The result revealed that the orientation of ANS binding to FABP3 is completely opposite to that of ANS binding to FABP4, and the substitution of valine in FABP4 to leucine in FABP3 may result in greater steric hindrance between the side-chain of Leu115 and the aniline ring of ANS.
X-ray structure; FABP3–ANS complex; human-heart fatty-acid-binding protein
Bile acids (BAs) play important roles not only in lipid metabolism, but also in signal transduction. TGR5, a transmembrane receptor of BAs, is an immunomodulative factor, but its detailed mechanism remains unclear. Here, we aimed to delineate how BAs operate in immunological responses via the TGR5 pathway in human mononuclear cell lineages. We examined TGR5 expression in human peripheral blood monocytes, several types of in vitro differentiated macrophages (Mϕs) and dendritic cells. Mϕs differentiated with macrophage colony-stimulating factor and interferon-γ (Mγ-Mϕs), which are similar to the human intestinal lamina propria CD14+ Mϕs that contribute to Crohn's disease (CD) pathogenesis by production of pro-inflammatory cytokines, highly expressed TGR5 compared with any other type of differentiated Mϕ and dendritic cells. We also showed that a TGR5 agonist and two types of BAs, deoxycholic acid and lithocholic acid, could inhibit tumour necrosis factor-α production in Mγ-Mϕs stimulated by commensal bacterial antigen or lipopolysaccharide. This inhibitory effect was mediated by the TGR5–cAMP pathway to induce phosphorylation of c-Fos that regulated nuclear factor-κB p65 activation. Next, we analysed TGR5 levels in lamina propria mononuclear cells (LPMCs) obtained from the intestinal mucosa of patients with CD. Compared with non-inflammatory bowel disease, inflamed CD LPMCs contained more TGR5 transcripts. Among LPMCs, isolated CD14+ intestinal Mϕs from patients with CD expressed TGR5. In isolated intestinal CD14+ Mϕs, a TGR5 agonist could inhibit tumour necrosis factor-α production. These results indicate that TGR5 signalling may have the potential to modulate immune responses in inflammatory bowel disease.
bile acid; Crohn's disease; intestinal macrophage; TGR5; tumour necrosis factor α
Cancer stem cells (CSC) or cancer stem cell-like cells (CSC-LCs) have been identified in many malignant tumors. CSCs are proposed to be related with drug resistance, tumor recurrence, and metastasis and are considered as a new target for cancer treatment; however, there are only a few reports on CSCs or CSC-LCs in renal cell carcinoma (RCC). Different approaches have been reported for CSC identification, but there are no universal markers for CSC. We used two different approaches, the traditional side population (SP) approach, and the enzymatic (aldehyde dehydrogenase 1 (ALDH1)) approach to identify CSC-LC population in two RCC cell lines, ACHN and KRC/Y. We found that ACHN and KRC/Y contain 1.4% and 1.7% SP cells, respectively. ACHN SP cells showed a higher sphere forming ability, drug resistance, and a slightly higher tumorigenic ability in NOD/SCID mice than Non-SP (NSP) cells, suggesting that cells with CSC-LC properties are included in ACHN SP cells. KRC/Y SP and NSP cells showed no difference in such properties. ALDH1 activity analysis revealed that ACHN SP cells expressed a higher level of activity than NSP cells (SP vs. NSP: 32.7% vs 14.6%). Analysis of ALDH1-positive ACHN cells revealed that they have a higher sphere forming ability, self-renewal ability, tumorigenicity and express higher mRNA levels of CSC-LC property-related genes (e.g., ABC transporter genes, self-replication genes, anti-apoptosis genes, and so forth) than ALDH1-negative cells. Drug treatment or exposure to hypoxic condition induced a 2- to 3-fold increase in number of ALDH1-positive cells. In conclusion, the results suggest that the ALDH1-positive cell population rather than SP cells show CSC-LC properties in a RCC cell line, ACHN.
To investigate whether diabetes and regular hemodialysis are associated with false elevation of ankle systolic blood pressure and ankle-brachial systolic pressure index (ABI) because of their arterial calcification in patients with critical limb ischemia (CLI).
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
We recruited 269 Japanese patients who underwent endovascular therapy for CLI. Ankle systolic blood pressure and ABI were assessed before endovascular therapy. Arterial stenosis and calcification were evaluated angiographically. We investigated the associations among clinical comorbidities, arterial calcification, and measurements of ankle systolic blood pressure and ABI.
Ankle systolic blood pressure was 85 ± 56 mmHg, and ABI was 0.59 ± 0.37. Arterial calcification was observed in 69% of the patients. The prevalence of diabetes and regular hemodialysis was 71 and 47%. Diabetes and regular hemodialysis were both significantly associated with the presence of arterial calcification; their adjusted odds ratios were 2.33 (P = 0.01) and 7.40 (P < 0.01), respectively. However, there was no significant difference in ankle systolic blood pressure or ABI level between those with and without these comorbidities. Furthermore, the presence of arterial calcification was not associated with ankle systolic blood pressure or ABI level, whereas arterial stenoses of all segments in the lower body had independent associations with reduced ankle systolic blood pressure and ABI level.
Diabetes and regular hemodialysis were significantly associated with arterial calcification, but not with elevated measurements of ankle systolic blood pressure or ABI, in CLI patients.
It is difficult to distinguish infections with different Bartonella species using commercially available immunofluorescence (indirect immunofluorescent antibody [IFA]) assay kits. To identify appropriate proteins for serodiagnosis of Bartonella quintana infections, we investigated the antigenicity of B. quintana proteins using sera from homeless people with high B. quintana IgG titers in IFA assay. These sera reacted strongly to an outer membrane protein, hemin-binding protein D (HbpD). Further, serum from an endocarditis patient infected with B. quintana reacted to HbpB and HbpD. To locate the antigenic sites within the proteins, we generated deletion mutants of HbpB and HbpD. Amino acid residues 89 to 220 of HbpB and 151 to 200 of HbpD were identified as the minimum regions required for recognition by these sera. Several oligopeptides comprising parts of the minimum regions of HbpB and HbpD were synthesized, and their immunoreactivity with the above-mentioned sera was tested by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Serum from the endocarditis patient reacted similarly to synthetic peptides HbpB2 (amino acid residues 144 to 173 of HbpB) and HbpD3 (151 to 200 residues of HbpD), while sera from the other subjects reacted to HbpD3. These results indicate that synthetic peptides HbpB2 and HbpD3 might be suitable for developing serological tools for differential diagnosis of B. quintana infections from other Bartonella infections.
Simian retrovirus type 4 (SRV-4), a simian type D retrovirus, naturally infects cynomolgus monkeys, usually without apparent symptoms. However, some infected monkeys presented with an immunosuppressive syndrome resembling that induced by simian immunodeficiency virus infection. Antiretrovirals with inhibitory activity against SRV-4 are considered to be promising agents to combat SRV-4 infection. However, although some antiretrovirals have been reported to have inhibitory activity against SRV-1 and SRV-2, inhibitors with anti-SRV-4 activity have not yet been studied. In this study, we identified antiretroviral agents with anti-SRV-4 activity from a panel of anti-human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) drugs using a robust in vitro luciferase reporter assay. Among these, two HIV reverse transcriptase inhibitors, zidovudine (AZT) and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF), potently inhibited SRV-4 infection within a submicromolar to nanomolar range, which was similar to or higher than the activities against HIV-1, Moloney murine leukemia virus, and feline immunodeficiency virus. In contrast, nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors and protease inhibitors did not exhibit any activities against SRV-4. Although both AZT and TDF effectively inhibited cell-free SRV-4 transmission, they exhibited only partial inhibitory activities against cell-to-cell transmission. Importantly, one HIV integrase strand transfer inhibitor, raltegravir (RAL), potently inhibited single-round infection as well as cell-free and cell-to-cell SRV-4 transmission. These findings indicate that viral expansion routes impact the inhibitory activity of antiretrovirals against SRV-4, while only RAL is effective in suppressing both the initial SRV-4 infection and subsequent SRV-4 replication.
Mitochondrial Ca2+ is known to change dynamically, regulating mitochondrial as well as cellular functions such as energy metabolism and apoptosis. The NCLX gene encodes the mitochondrial Na+-Ca2+ exchanger (NCXmit), a Ca2+ extrusion system in mitochondria. Here we report that the NCLX regulates automaticity of the HL-1 cardiomyocytes. NCLX knockdown using siRNA resulted in the marked prolongation of the cycle length of spontaneous Ca2+ oscillation and action potential generation. The upstrokes of action potential and Ca2+ transient were markedly slower, and sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca2+ handling were compromised in the NCLX knockdown cells. Analyses using a mathematical model of HL-1 cardiomyocytes demonstrated that blocking NCXmit reduced the SR Ca2+ content to slow spontaneous SR Ca2+ leak, which is a trigger of automaticity. We propose that NCLX is a novel molecule to regulate automaticity of cardiomyocytes via modulating SR Ca2+ handling.
The purpose of this study is to investigate the prognostic impact of C-reactive protein (CRP) on patients with advanced urothelial carcinoma and to develop a novel nomogram predicting survival.
A total of 223 consecutive patients were treated at Tokyo Medical and Dental Hospital. A nomogram incorporating V was developed based on the result of a Cox proportional hazards model. Its efficacy and clinical usefulness was evaluated by concordance index (c-index) and decision curve analysis.
Of the 223 patients, 184 (83%) died of cancer. Median follow-up periods of patients who died and those who remained alive were 5 and 11 months, respectively. We developed a novel nomogram incorporating Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group Performance Status, presence of visceral metastasis, haemoglobin and age. The c-index of the nomogram predicting survival probability 6 and 12 months after diagnosis was 0.788 and 0.765, respectively. Decision curve analyses revealed that the novel nomogram incorporating CRP had a superior net benefit than that without CRP for most of the examined probabilities.
We demonstrated the prognostic impact of CRP that improved the predictive accuracy of a nomogram for survival probability in patients with advanced urothelial carcinoma.
C-reactive protein; advanced urothelial carcinoma; biomarker; survival prediction; nomogram; decision curve analysis
Several epidemiological and preclinical studies suggest that non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), which inhibit cyclooxygenase (COX), reduce the risk of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and can lower β-amyloid (Aβ) production and inhibit neuroinflammation. However, follow-up clinical trials, mostly using selective cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 inhibitors, failed to show any beneficial effect in AD patients with mild to severe cognitive deficits. Recent data indicated that COX-1, classically viewed as the homeostatic isoform, is localized in microglia and is actively involved in brain injury induced by pro-inflammatory stimuli including Aβ, lipopolysaccharide, and interleukins. We hypothesized that neuroinflammation is critical for disease progression and selective COX-1 inhibition, rather than COX-2 inhibition, can reduce neuroinflammation and AD pathology. Here, we show that treatment of 20-month-old triple transgenic AD (3 × Tg-AD) mice with the COX-1 selective inhibitor SC-560 improved spatial learning and memory, and reduced amyloid deposits and tau hyperphosphorylation. SC-560 also reduced glial activation and brain expression of inflammatory markers in 3 × Tg-AD mice, and switched the activated microglia phenotype promoting their phagocytic ability. The present findings are the first to demonstrate that selective COX-1 inhibition reduces neuroinflammation, neuropathology, and improves cognitive function in 3 × Tg-AD mice. Thus, selective COX-1 inhibition should be further investigated as a potential therapeutic approach for AD.
3 × Tg-AD mice; Alzheimer's disease; COX-1; microglia; SC-560
Human T-cell leukemia virus type 1 (HTLV-1) causes both a neoplastic disease and inflammatory diseases, including HTLV-1-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP). The HTLV-1 basic leucine zipper factor (HBZ) gene is encoded in the minus strand of the proviral DNA and is constitutively expressed in infected cells and ATL cells. HBZ increases the number of regulatory T (Treg) cells by inducing the Foxp3 gene transcription. Recent studies have revealed that some CD4+Foxp3+ T cells are not terminally differentiated but have a plasticity to convert to other T-cell subsets. Induced Treg (iTreg) cells tend to lose Foxp3 expression, and may acquire an effector phenotype accompanied by the production of inflammatory cytokines, such as interferon-γ (IFN-γ). In this study, we analyzed a pathogenic mechanism of chronic inflammation related with HTLV-1 infection via focusing on HBZ and Foxp3. Infiltration of lymphocytes was observed in the skin, lung and intestine of HBZ-Tg mice. As mechanisms, adhesion and migration of HBZ-expressing CD4+ T cells were enhanced in these mice. Foxp3−CD4+ T cells produced higher amounts of IFN-γ compared to those from non-Tg mice. Expression of Helios was reduced in Treg cells from HBZ-Tg mice and HAM/TSP patients, indicating that iTreg cells are predominant. Consistent with this finding, the conserved non-coding sequence 2 region of the Foxp3 gene was hypermethylated in Treg cells of HBZ-Tg mice, which is a characteristic of iTreg cells. Furthermore, Treg cells in the spleen of HBZ-transgenic mice tended to lose Foxp3 expression and produced an excessive amount of IFN-γ, while Foxp3 expression was stable in natural Treg cells of the thymus. HBZ enhances the generation of iTreg cells, which likely convert to Foxp3−T cells producing IFN-γ. The HBZ-mediated proinflammatory phenotype of CD4+ T cells is implicated in the pathogenesis of HTLV-1-associated inflammation.
Viral infection frequently induces tissue inflammation in the host. HTLV-1 infection is associated with chronic inflammation in the CNS, skin, and lung, but the inflammatory mechanism is not fully understood yet. Since HTLV-1 directly infects CD4+ T cells, central player of the host immune regulation, HTLV-1 should modulate the host immune response not only via viral antigen stimulation but also via CD4+ T-cell-mediated immune deregulation. It has been reported that Foxp3+CD4+ T cells are increased in HTLV-1 infection. It remains a central question in HTLV-1 pathogenesis why HTLV-1 induces inflammation despite of increase of FoxP3+ cells, which generally possess immune suppressive function. We have elucidated here that most of the increased Foxp3+ cells in HBZ-Tg mice or HAM/TSP patients is not thymus-derived naturally occurring Treg cells but induced Treg cells. Since the iTreg cells are prone to lose FoxP3 expression and then become cytokine-producing cells, the increase of iTreg cells could serve as a source of proinflammatory CD4+ T cells. Thus HTLV-1 causes abnormal CD4+ T-cell differentiation by expressing HBZ, which should play a crucial role in chronic inflammation related with HTLV-1. This study has provided new insights into the mechanism of chronic inflammation accompanied with viral infection.
The fowl pox vector expressing the tumor associated antigens MUC1 and CEA in the context of costimulatory molecules (rF-PANVAC) has shown promise as a tumor vaccine. However, vaccine mediated expansion of suppressor T cell populations may blunt clinical efficacy. We characterized the cellular immune response induced by ex-vivo dendritic cells (DCs) transduced with (rF)-PANVAC. Consistent with the functional characteristics of potent antigen presenting cells, rF-PANVAC-DCs demonstrated strong expression of MUC1 and CEA and costimulatory molecules, CD80, CD86, and CD83; decreased levels of phosphorylated STAT3, and increased levels of Tyk2, JAK2 and STAT1. rF-PANVAC-DCs stimulated expansion of tumor antigen specific T cells with potent cytolytic capacity. However, rF-PANVAC transduced DCs also induced the concurrent expansion of FOXP3 expressing CD4+CD25+high regulatory T cells (Tregs) that inhibited T cell activation. Moreover, Tregs expressed high levels of Th2 cytokines (IL-10, IL-4, IL-5, and IL-13) together with phosphorylated STAT3 and STAT6. In contrast, the vaccine expanded Treg population expressed high levels of Th1 cytokines IL-2 and IFNγ and the proinflammatory RORγt and IL-17A suggesting that these cells may share effector functions with conventional TH17 T cells. These data suggest that Tregs expanded by rF-PANVAC-DCs, exhibit immunosuppressive properties potentially mediated by Th2 cytokines, but simultaneous expression of Th1 and Th17 associated factors suggests a high degree of plasticity.
The filamentous, heterocystous cyanobacterium Anabaena sp. strain PCC 7120 is one of the simplest multicellular organisms that show both morphological pattern formation with cell differentiation (heterocyst formation) and circadian rhythms. Therefore, it potentially provides an excellent model in which to analyze the relationship between circadian functions and multicellularity. However, detailed cyanobacterial circadian regulation has been intensively analyzed only in the unicellular species Synechococcus elongatus. In contrast to the highest-amplitude cycle in Synechococcus, we found that none of the kai genes in Anabaena showed high-amplitude expression rhythms. Nevertheless, ∼80 clock-controlled genes were identified. We constructed luciferase reporter strains to monitor the expression of some high-amplitude genes. The bioluminescence rhythms satisfied the three criteria for circadian oscillations and were nullified by genetic disruption of the kai gene cluster. In heterocysts, in which photosystem II is turned off, the metabolic and redox states are different from those in vegetative cells, although these conditions are thought to be important for circadian entrainment and timekeeping processes. Here, we demonstrate that circadian regulation is active in heterocysts, as shown by the finding that heterocyst-specific genes, such as all1427 and hesAB, are expressed in a robust circadian fashion exclusively without combined nitrogen.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) and neuromyelitis optica (NMO) occasionally have an extremely aggressive and debilitating disease course; however, its molecular basis is unknown. This study aimed to determine a relationship between connexin (Cx) pathology and disease aggressiveness in Asian patients with MS and NMO.
Samples included 11 autopsied cases with NMO and NMO spectrum disorder (NMOSD), six with MS, and 20 with other neurological diseases (OND). Methods of analysis included immunohistochemical expression of astrocytic Cx43/Cx30, oligodendrocytic Cx47/Cx32 relative to AQP4 and other astrocytic and oligodendrocytic proteins, extent of demyelination, the vasculocentric deposition of complement and immunoglobulin, and lesion staging by CD68 staining for macrophages. Lesions were classified as actively demyelinating (n=59), chronic active (n=58) and chronic inactive (n=23). Sera from 120 subjects including 30 MS, 30 NMO, 40 OND and 20 healthy controls were examined for anti-Cx43 antibody by cell-based assay. Six NMO/NMOSD and three MS cases showed preferential loss of astrocytic Cx43 beyond the demyelinated areas in actively demyelinating and chronic active lesions, where heterotypic Cx43/Cx47 astrocyte oligodendrocyte gap junctions were extensively lost. Cx43 loss was significantly associated with a rapidly progressive disease course as six of nine cases with Cx43 loss, but none of eight cases without Cx43 loss regardless of disease phenotype, died within two years after disease onset (66.7% vs. 0%, P=0.0090). Overall, five of nine cases with Cx43 loss and none of eight cases without Cx43 loss had distal oligodendrogliopathy characterized by selective myelin associated glycoprotein loss (55.6% vs. 0.0%, P=0.0296). Loss of oligodendrocytic Cx32 and Cx47 expression was observed in most active and chronic lesions from all MS and NMO/NMOSD cases. Cx43-specific antibodies were absent in NMO/NMOSD and MS patients.
These findings suggest that autoantibody-independent astrocytic Cx43 loss may relate to disease aggressiveness and distal oligodendrogliopathy in both MS and NMO.
Odontogenic diseases can be a risk factor for life-threatening infection in patients with hematologic malignancies during chemotherapy that induces myelosuppression of variable severity. Previous studies noted the necessity of the elimination of all odontogenic foci before hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. To enable planning for the adequate dental intervention, the oral medicine team must understand the general status of patient and the intensity of the chemotherapy, which is sometimes difficult to be fully appreciated by dental staff. Therefore, a simplified grading would facilitate the sharing of information between hematologists, dentists and oral hygienists. This study aimed to introduce our myelosuppression grading of chemotherapies for hematologic malignancies and analyze the timing of occurrence of severe odontogenic infection.
37 patients having received various chemotherapies for hematologic malignancies were enrolled. The chemotherapy regimens were classified into four grades based on the persistency of myelosuppression induced by chemotherapy. Mild myelosuppressive chemotherapies were classified as grade A, moderate ones as grade B, severe ones as grade C, and chemotherapies that caused severe myelosuppression and persistent immunodeficiency (known as conditioning regimens for transplant) as grade D. The timing of occurrence of severe odontogenic infection was retrospectively investigated.
Two patients (5.4%) had severe odontogenic infections after grade B or C chemotherapy. One occurred after extraction of non-salvageable teeth; the other resulted from advanced periodontitis in a tooth that could not be extracted because of thrombocytopenia. Both were de novo hematologic malignancy patients. During grade D chemotherapy, no patients had severe odontogenic infections.
The simplified grading introduced in this study is considered a useful tool for understanding the myelosuppressive state caused by chemotherapy and facilitating communication between medical and dental staff. During the period around the primary chemotherapy, especially for de novo hematologic malignancy patients who often received grade B to C myelosuppression chemotherapy, caution should be exercised for severe odontogenic infection by the oral medicine team, irrespective of whether invasive treatment is to be performed.
Hematologic malignancy; Chemotherapy; Tooth extraction; Myelosuppression grading; Odontogenic septicemia
We studied the replication of influenza A/California/07/09 (H1N1) wild type (CA09wt) virus in two non-human primate species and used one of these models to evaluate the immunogenicity and protective efficacy of a live attenuated cold-adapted vaccine, which contains the hemagglutinin and neuraminidase from the H1N1 wild type virus and six internal protein gene segments of the A/Ann Arbor/6/60 cold-adapted (ca) master donor virus. We infected African green monkeys (AGMs) and rhesus macaques with 2 × 106 TCID50 of CA09wt and CA09ca influenza viruses. The virus replicated in the upper respiratory tract of all animals but the titers in upper respiratory tract tissues of rhesus macaques were significant higher than in AGMs (mean peak titers 104.5 TCID50/g and 102.0 TCID50/g on days 4 and 2 post-infection, respectively; p<0.01). Virus replication was observed in the lungs of all rhesus macaques (102.0–105.4TCID50/g) whereas only 2 out of 4 AGMs had virus recovered from the lungs (102.5– 103.5 TCID50/g). The CA09ca vaccine virus was attenuated and highly restricted in replication in both AGMs and rhesus macaques. We evaluated the immunogenicity and protective efficacy of the CA09ca vaccine in rhesus macaques because CA09wt virus replicated more efficiently in this species. One or two doses of vaccine were administered intranasally and intratracheally to rhesus macaques. For the two-dose group, the vaccine was administered 4-weeks apart. Immunogenicity was assessed by measuring hemagglutination-inhibiting (HAI) antibodies in the serum and specific IgA antibodies to CA09wt virus in the nasal wash. One or two doses of the vaccine elicited a significant rise in HAI titers (range 40–320). Two doses of CA09ca elicited higher pH1N1-specific IgA titers than in the mock-immunized group (p<0.01). Vaccine efficacy was assessed by comparing titers of CA09wt challenge virus in the respiratory tract of mock immunized and CA09ca vaccinated monkeys. Significantly lower virus titers were observed in the lungs of vaccinated animals than mock-immunized animals (p ≤ 0.01). Our results demonstrate that AGMs and rhesus macaques support the replication of pandemic H1N1 influenza virus to different degrees and a cold-adapted pH1N1 vaccine elicits protective immunity against pH1N1 virus infection in rhesus macaques.
Pandemic H1N1; Non-human primate; Influenza vaccine
Midkine (MDK) is a heparin-binding growth factor that is highly expressed in many malignant tumors, including lung cancers. MDK activates the PI3K pathway and induces anti-apoptotic activity, in turn enhancing the survival of tumors. Therefore, the inhibition of MDK is considered a potential strategy for cancer therapy. In the present study, we demonstrate a novel small molecule compound (iMDK) that targets MDK. iMDK inhibited the cell growth of MDK-positive H441 lung adenocarcinoma cells that harbor an oncogenic KRAS mutation and H520 squamous cell lung cancer cells, both of which are types of untreatable lung cancer. However, iMDK did not reduce the cell viability of MDK-negative A549 lung adenocarcinoma cells or normal human lung fibroblast (NHLF) cells indicating its specificity. iMDK suppressed the endogenous expression of MDK but not that of other growth factors such as PTN or VEGF. iMDK suppressed the growth of H441 cells by inhibiting the PI3K pathway and inducing apoptosis. Systemic administration of iMDK significantly inhibited tumor growth in a xenograft mouse model in vivo. Inhibition of MDK with iMDK provides a potential therapeutic approach for the treatment of lung cancers that are driven by MDK.
To prevent excessive inflammatory responses to commensal microbes, intestinal macrophages unlike their systemic counterparts do not produce inflammatory cytokines in response to enteric bacteria. Consequently, loss of macrophage tolerance to the enteric microbiota plays a central role in the pathogenesis of the inflammatory bowel diseases. Therefore, we examined whether the hyporesponsive phenotype of intestinal macrophages is programmed by prior exposure to the microbiota. IL-10, but not in vivo exposure to the microbiota, programs intestinal macrophage tolerance, as wild-type (WT) colonic macrophages from germ free and specific-pathogen free (SPF) derived mice produce IL-10 but not IL-12 p40 when activated with enteric bacteria. Basal and activated IL-10 expression is mediated through a MyD88 dependent pathway. Conversely, colonic macrophages from germ free and SPF derived colitis-prone Il10−/− mice demonstrated robust production of IL-12 p40. Next, mechanisms through which IL-10 inhibits Il12b expression were investigated. While Il12b mRNA was transiently induced in LPS-activated WT bone marrow derived macrophages (BMDMs), expression persisted in Il10−/− BMDMs. There were no differences in nucleosome remodeling, mRNA stability, NF-κB activation or MAPK signaling to explain prolonged transcription of Il12b in Il10−/− BMDMs. However, acetylated histone H4 (AcH4) transiently associated with the Il12b promoter in WT BMDMs, whereas association of these factors was prolonged in Il10−/− BMDMs. Experiments utilizing histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors and HDAC3 shRNA indicate that HDAC3 is involved in histone deacetylation of the Il12b promoter by IL-10. These results suggest that histone deacetylation on the Il12b promoter by HDAC3 mediates homeostatic effects of IL-10 in macrophages.
We have previously developed a new malaria vaccine delivery system based on the baculovirus dual expression system (BDES). In this system, expression of malaria antigens is driven by a dual promoter consisting of the baculovirus-derived polyhedrin and mammal-derived cytomegalovirus promoters. To test this system for its potential as a vaccine against human malaria parasites, we investigated immune responses against the newly developed BDES-based Plasmodium falciparum circumsporozoite protein vaccines (BDES-PfCSP) in mice and Rhesus monkeys. Immunization of mice with BDES-PfCSP induced Th1/Th2-mixed type immune responses with high PfCSP-specific antibody (Ab) titers, and provided significant protection against challenge from the bites of mosquitoes infected with a transgenic P. berghei line expressing PfCSP. Next, we evaluated the immunogenicity of the BDES-PfCSP vaccine in a rhesus monkey model. Immunization of BDES-PfCSP elicited high levels of anti-PfCSP Ab responses in individual monkeys. Moreover, the sera from the immunized monkeys remarkably blocked sporozoite invasion of HepG2 cells. Taken together with two animal models, our results indicate that this novel vaccine platform (BDES) has potential clinical application as a vaccine against malaria.
The complex process of allopolyploid speciation includes various mechanisms ranging from species crosses and hybrid genome doubling to genome alterations and the establishment of new allopolyploids as persisting natural entities. Currently, little is known about the genetic mechanisms that underlie hybrid genome doubling, despite the fact that natural allopolyploid formation is highly dependent on this phenomenon. We examined the genetic basis for the spontaneous genome doubling of triploid F1 hybrids between the direct ancestors of allohexaploid common wheat (Triticum aestivum L., AABBDD genome), namely Triticumturgidum L. (AABB genome) and Aegilopstauschii Coss. (DD genome). An Ae. tauschii intraspecific lineage that is closely related to the D genome of common wheat was identified by population-based analysis. Two representative accessions, one that produces a high-genome-doubling-frequency hybrid when crossed with a T. turgidum cultivar and the other that produces a low-genome-doubling-frequency hybrid with the same cultivar, were chosen from that lineage for further analyses. A series of investigations including fertility analysis, immunostaining, and quantitative trait locus (QTL) analysis showed that (1) production of functional unreduced gametes through nonreductional meiosis is an early step key to successful hybrid genome doubling, (2) first division restitution is one of the cytological mechanisms that cause meiotic nonreduction during the production of functional male unreduced gametes, and (3) six QTLs in the Ae. tauschii genome, most of which likely regulate nonreductional meiosis and its subsequent gamete production processes, are involved in hybrid genome doubling. Interlineage comparisons of Ae. tauschii’s ability to cause hybrid genome doubling suggested an evolutionary model for the natural variation pattern of the trait in which non-deleterious mutations in six QTLs may have important roles. The findings of this study demonstrated that the genetic mechanisms for hybrid genome doubling could be studied based on the intrinsic natural variation that exists in the parental species.
BTBD10, an Akt interactor, activates Akt by decreasing the protein phosphatase 2A-mediated dephosphorylation and inactivation of Akt. Overexpression of BTBD10 suppresses motor neuron death that is induced by a familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)-linked superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) mutant, G93A-SOD1 in vitro. In this study, we further investigated the BTBD10-mediated suppression of motor neuron death. We found that the small interfering RNA-mediated inhibition of BTBD10 expression led to the death of cultured motor neurons. In Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans), disruption of the btbd-10 gene caused not only loss of neurons, including both motor and touch-receptor neurons, but also a locomotion defect. In addition, we found that the expression of BTBD10 was generally decreased in the motor neurons from patients of sporadic ALS and transgenic mice overexpressing G93A-SOD1 (G93A-SOD1-transgenic mice). Collectively, these results suggest that the reduced expression of BTBD10 leads to motor neuron death both in vitro and in vivo.
ALS; motor neuron death; Caenorhabditis elegans; FUS; TDP-43
Few studies have focused on pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) associated with connective tissue diseases (CTDs). The optimal treatment for CTD-PAH has yet to be established.
Meta-analysis of the data from evaluations of treatment for PAH generally (19 studies) and CTD-PAH specifically (nine studies) to compare the effects of pulmonary vasodilative PAH agents. MEDLINE, EMBASE and BIOSIS were searched. English-language full-text articles published between January 1990 and August 2012 were eligible.
Patients with PAH generally (n=3073) and CTD-PAH specifically (n=678).
Primary outcome measure
Exercise capacity (6 min walk distance, 6 MWD).
Patients with PAH (all forms) had mean age 32–55 years (women, 61–87%); CTD-PAH patients had mean age 45–55 years (women, 74–95%). Overall estimate of mean change in 6 MWD from baseline (95% CI) for the active treatment group versus the control group in all patients with PAH was 34.6 m (27.4–41.9 m). Pooled mean differences from the results for patients receiving placebo by subgroup of patients receiving phosphodiesterase (PDE)-5 inhibitors, endothelin receptor antagonists (ERAs) and prostacyclin (PGI2) analogues were 22.4–45.5, 39.5–44.2 and 12.4–64.9 m, respectively. Overall estimate of mean difference between changes in 6 MWD in patients with CTD-PAH was 34.2 m (23.3–45.0 m). Pooled mean differences by subgroup of patients receiving PDE-5 inhibitors, ERAs and PGI2 analogues in patients with CTD-PAH were 37.0–47.1, 14.1–21.7 and 21.0–108.0 m, respectively. ERAs were less effective in patients with CTD-PAH than all-form patients with PAH: 14.1 m (−4.4–32.6 m) vs 39.5 m (19.5–59.6 m) for bosentan and 21.7 m (2.2–41.3 m) vs 44.2 m (30.2–58.2 m) for ambrisentan.
All three types of PAH agent are effective. However, ERAs may be a less effective choice against CTD-PAH; further studies are needed. Limitations include the limited number of studies for some agents and for patients with CTD-PAH.
Bone remodeling is characterized by the sequential, local tethering of osteoclasts and osteoblasts and is key to the maintenance of bone integrity. While bone matrix–mobilized growth factors, such as TGF-β, are proposed to regulate remodeling, no in vivo evidence exists that an osteoclast-produced molecule serves as a coupling factor for bone resorption to formation. We found that CTHRC1, a protein secreted by mature bone-resorbing osteoclasts, targets stromal cells to stimulate osteogenesis. Cthrc1 expression was robustly induced when mature osteoclasts were placed on dentin or hydroxyapatite, and also by increasing extracellular calcium. Cthrc1 expression in bone increased in a high-turnover state (such as that induced by RANKL injections in vivo), but decreased in conditions associated with suppressed bone turnover (such as with aging and after alendronate treatment). Targeted deletion of Cthrc1 in mice eliminated Cthrc1 expression in bone, whereas its deficiency in osteoblasts did not exert any significant effect. Osteoclast-specific deletion of Cthrc1 resulted in osteopenia due to reduced bone formation and impaired the coupling process after resorption induced by RANKL injections, impairing bone mass recovery. These data demonstrate that CTHRC1 is an osteoclast-secreted coupling factor that regulates bone remodeling.
Dysfunction of regulatory T (Treg) cells has been detected in diverse inflammatory disorders, including chronic graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). Interleukin-2 is critical for Treg cell growth, survival, and activity. We hypothesized that low-dose interleukin-2 could preferentially enhance Treg cells in vivo and suppress clinical manifestations of chronic GVHD.
In this observational cohort study, patients with chronic GVHD that was refractory to glucocorticoid therapy received daily low-dose subcutaneous interleukin-2 (0.3×106, 1×106, or 3×106 IU per square meter of body-surface area) for 8 weeks. The end points were safety and clinical and immunologic response. After a 4-week hiatus, patients with a response could receive interleukin-2 for an extended period.
A total of 29 patients were enrolled. None had progression of chronic GVHD or relapse of a hematologic cancer. The maximum tolerated dose of interleukin-2 was 1×106 IU per square meter. The highest dose level induced unacceptable constitutional symptoms. Of the 23 patients who could be evaluated for response, 12 had major responses involving multiple sites. The numbers of CD4+ Treg cells were preferentially increased in all patients, with a peak median value, at 4 weeks, that was more than eight times the baseline value (P<0.001), without affecting CD4+ conventional T (Tcon) cells. The Treg:Tcon ratio increased to a median of more than five times the baseline value (P<0.001). The Treg cell count and Treg:Tcon ratio remained elevated at 8 weeks (P<0.001 for both comparisons with baseline values), then declined when the patients were not receiving interleukin-2. The increased numbers of Treg cells expressed the transcription factor forkhead box P3 (FOXP3) and could inhibit autologous Tcon cells. Immunologic and clinical responses were sustained in patients who received interleukin-2 for an extended period, permitting the glucocorticoid dose to be tapered by a mean of 60% (range, 25 to 100).
Daily low-dose interleukin-2 was safely administered in patients with active chronic GVHD that was refractory to glucocorticoid therapy. Administration was associated with preferential, sustained Treg cell expansion in vivo and amelioration of the manifestations of chronic GVHD in a substantial proportion of patients. (Funded by a Dana–Farber Dunkin' Donuts Rising Star award and others; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00529035.)
Ectonucleotidase plays an important role in the regulation of cardiac function by controlling extracellular levels of adenine nucleotides and adenosine. To determine the influence of ischemia-reperfusion injury on ectonucleotidase activity in coronary vascular bed, we compared the metabolic profile of adenine nucleotides during the coronary circulation in pre- and post-ischemic heart.
Langendorff-perfused rat hearts were used to assess the intracoronary metabolism of adenine nucleotides. The effects of ischemia on the adenine nucleotide metabolism were examined after 30 min of ischemia and 30 min of reperfusion. Adenine nucleotide metabolites were measured by high performance liquid chromatography.
ATP, ADP and AMP were rapidly metabolized to adenosine and inosine during the coronary circulation. After ischemia, ectonucleotidase activity of the coronary vascular bed was significantly decreased. In addition, the perfusate from the ischemic heart contained a considerable amount of enzymes degrading ATP, AMP and adenosine. Immunoblot analysis revealed that the perfusate from the ischemic heart dominantly contained ectonucleoside triphosphate diphosphohydrolase 1, and, to a lesser extent, ecto-5’-nucleotidase. The leakage of nucleotide metabolizing enzymes from the coronary vascular bed by ischemia-reperfusion was more remarkable in aged rats, in which post-ischemic cardiac dysfunction was more serious.
Ectonucleotidases were liberated from the coronary vascular bed by ischemia-reperfusion, resulting in an overall decrease in ectonucleotidase activity in the post-ischemic coronary vascular bed. These results suggest that decreased ectonucleotidase activity by ischemia may exacerbate subsequent reperfusion injury, and that levels of circulating ectonucleotidase may reflect the severity of ischemic vascular injury.
Ischemia-reperfusion; Coronary circulation; Ectonucleotidase; ATP; Adenosine