BACKGROUND: Recent studies have shown that microRNAs (miRNA) have prognostic values in cancers. This meta-analysis seeks to summarize the global predicting role of miR-155 for survival in patients with a variety of carcinomas.
METHODS: Eligible studies were identified through multiple search strategies. Data were extracted from studies investigating the relationship between miR-155 expression and survival in cancer patients. Combined hazard ratios (HRs) of miR-155 for outcome were analyzed.
RESULTS: A total of 16 studies dealing with various carcinomas were included for this meta-analysis. For overall survival, higher miR-155 expression could significantly predict worse outcome with the pooled HR of 2.057 (95% CI: 1.392–3.039). For relapse or progress-free survival, elevated miR-155 was also a significant predictor, with a combined HR of 1.918 (95% CI: 1.311–2.806,). In addition, subgroup analysis showed that higher expression of miR-155 had the trends to predict worse outcome in lung cancer. However, the HRs did not reach the statistical significance.
CONCLUSION: Our findings suggest that miR-155 detection has a prognostic value in cancer patients. Regularly measuring miR-155 expression may be useful in clinical practice.
miR-155; cancer; prognosis; clinical
Hepatic oval cells are thought to represent facultative hepatic epithelial stem cells in liver in which damage inhibits hepatocyte proliferation and liver regeneration. The LE/6 hepatic stem cell line was derived from the liver of male Sprague-Dawley rats fed a choline-deficient diet containing 0.1% ethionine. They are histochemically characterized by their expression of hepatocytic (hepPar1), cholangiocytic cytokeratin (CK19), hepatic progenitor cell (OV-6), and hematopoietic stem cell (c-kit) markers. In this study, we transplanted LE/6 cells by subcutaneous injection into adult female nude mice, and examined their engraftment and differentiation potential in the subcutaneous microenvironment in vivo. Our results demonstrated that following subcutaneous transplantation, differentiation of LE/6 cells into mesenchymal tumor tissue (MTT) was associated with reduced E-cadherin expression, upregulation of E-cadherin repressor molecules (Snail proteins), and increased expression of vimentin and N-cadherin, all of these events are characteristic of the epithelial–mesenchymal transition (EMT).
AIM: To investigate the major complications after radiofrequency ablation (RFA) for the treatment of liver tumors and analyze possible risk factors that precipitate these complications.
METHODS: From March 2001 to April 2008, 255 patients with liver tumors (205 male, 50 female; age range, 18-89 years; mean age, 56.0 years) who received RFA were enrolled in this study. Of these patients, 212 had hepatocellular carcinoma, 39 had metastatic liver tumors and four had cholangiocellular carcinoma. One hundred and forty eight patients had a single tumor, and 107 had multiple tumors. Maximum diameter of the tumors ranged 1.3-20 cm (mean, 5.1 cm). All patients were treated with a cooled-tip perfusion electrode attached to a radiofrequency generator (Radionics, Burlington, MA, USA). RFA was performed via the percutaneous approach (n = 257), laparoscopy (n = 7), or open surgical treatment (n = 86). The major complications related to RFA were recorded. The resultant data were analyzed to determine risk factors associated these complications.
RESULTS: Among the 255 patients, 425 liver tumors were treated and 350 RFA sessions were performed. Thirty-seven (10%) major complications were observed which included 13 cases of liver failure, 10 cases of hydrothorax requiring drainage, three cases of tumor seeding, one case of upper gastrointestinal bleeding, one case of intrahepatic abscess, one case of bile duct injury, one case of cardiac arrest, and five cases of hyperglycemia. Seven patients had more than two complications. Liver failure was the most severe complication and was associated with the highest mortality. Eleven patients died due to worsening liver decompensation. Child-Pugh classification (P = 0.001) and choice of approach (P = 0.045) were related to post-treatment liver failure, whereas patient age, tumor size and number were not significant factors precipitating this complication.
CONCLUSION: RFA can be accepted as a relatively safe procedure for the treatment of liver tumors. However, attention should be paid to possible complications even though the incidences of these complications are rare. Careful patient selection and the best approach choice (percutaneous, laparoscopy, or laparotomy) will help to minimize the incidence and morbidity rate of complications which occur after RFA.
Complication; Hepatocellular carcinoma; Metastatic liver tumor; Radiofrequency ablation; Liver failure
We demonstrate intrinsic optical signal (IOS) imaging of intact rat islet, which consists of many endocrine cells working together. A near-infrared digital microscope was employed for optical monitoring of islet activities evoked by glucose stimulation. Dynamic NIR images revealed transient IOS responses in the islet activated by low-dose (2.75mM) and high-dose (5.5mM) glucose stimuli. Comparative experiments and quantitative analysis indicated that both glucose metabolism and calcium/insulin dynamics might contribute to the observed IOS responses. Further investigation of the IOS imaging technology may provide a high resolution method for ex vivo functional examination of the islet, which is important for advanced study of diabetes associated islet dysfunctions and for improved quality control of donor islets for transplantation.
intrinsic optical signal; functional imaging; rat islet; glucose stimulation
Previous studies have demonstrated that structural deficits and functional connectivity imbalances might underlie the pathophysiology of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). The purpose of the present study was to investigate gray matter deficits and abnormal resting-state networks in patients with OCD and further investigate the association between the anatomic and functional alterations and clinical symptoms.
Participants were 33 treatment-naïve OCD patients and 33 matched healthy controls. Voxel-based morphometry was used to investigate the regions with gray matter abnormalities and resting-state functional connectivity analysis was further conducted between each gray matter abnormal region and the remaining voxels in the brain.
Compared with healthy controls, patients with OCD showed significantly increased gray matter volume in the left caudate, left thalamus, and posterior cingulate cortex, as well as decreased gray matter volume in the bilateral medial orbitofrontal cortex, left anterior cingulate cortex, and left inferior frontal gyrus. By using the above morphologic deficits areas as seed regions, functional connectivity analysis found abnormal functional integration in the cortical-striatum-thalamic-cortical (CSTC) circuits and default mode network. Subsequent correlation analyses revealed that morphologic deficits in the left thalamus and increased functional connectivity within the CSTC circuits positively correlated with the total Y-BOCS score.
This study provides evidence that morphologic and functional alterations are seen in CSTC circuits and default mode network in treatment-naïve OCD patients. The association between symptom severity and the CSTC circuits suggests that anatomic and functional alterations in CSTC circuits are especially important in the pathophysiology of OCD.
Chronic stress is a precipitating factor for affective disorders such as depression and anxiety. This is associated with the effects of chronic stress on the amygdala. Adolescents may be more vulnerable to the effects of chronic stress, which may be related to its impact on amygdala function. However, the stress-induced changes in amygdala neuronal activity, and the age-dependent impact of chronic stress on amygdala neuronal activity have not been studied in depth. In this study, we investigated how repeated restraint impacts basolateral amygdala (BLA) projection neuron activity in both adolescent and adult rats. Using in vivo extracellular recordings from anesthetized rats, we found that repeated restraint increased the number of spontaneously firing neurons in the BLA of adolescent rats, but did not significantly increase the firing rate. In contrast, repeated restraint increased the firing rate of BLA neurons in adult rats, but did not change the number of spontaneously firing neurons. This is the first direct evidence of how stress differently impacts amygdala physiology in adolescent and adult rats. These findings may shed light on the mechanism by which chronic stress may age-dependently precipitate psychiatric disorders.
chronic stress; repeated restraint; adolescent; amygdala; extracellular electrophysiology
ABT-751, a novel orally available antitubulin agent, is mainly eliminated as inactive glucuronide (ABT-751G) and sulfate (ABT-751S) conjugates. We performed a pharmacogenetic investigation of ABT-751 pharmacokinetics using in-vitro data to guide the selection of genes for genotyping in a phase I trial of ABT-751.
UDP-glucuronosyltransferase (UGT) and sulfotransferase (SULT) enzymes were screened for ABT-751 metabolite formation in vitro. Forty-seven cancer patients treated with ABT-751 were genotyped for 21 variants in these genes.
UGT1A1, UGT1A4, UGT1A8, UGT2B7, and SULT1A1 were found to be involved in the formation of inactive ABT-751 glucuronide (ABT-751G) and sulfate (ABT-751S). SULT1A1 copy number (> 2) was associated with an average 34% increase in ABT-751 clearance (P= 0.044), an 18% reduction in ABT-751 AUC (P = 0.045), and a 50% increase in sulfation metabolic ratios (P=0.025). UGT1A8 rs6431558 was associated with a 28% increase in glucuronidation metabolic ratios (P =0.022), and UGT1A4*2 was associated with a 65% decrease in ABT-751 Ctrough (P = 0.009).
These results might represent the first example of a clinical pharmacokinetic effect of the SULT1A1 copy number variant on the clearance of a SULT1A1 substrate. A-priori selection of candidate genes guided by in-vitro metabolic screening enhanced our ability to identify genetic determinants of interpatient pharmacokinetic variability.
ABT-751; drug development; drug metabolism; pharmacogenetics; phase I; sulfotransferase; UDP-glucuronosyltransferase
We aimed to assess the effectiveness and feasibility of head-and-neck Computed Tomography Angiography (CTA) with low tube voltage and low concentration contrast media combined with iterative reconstruction algorithm.
92 patients were randomly divided into group A and B: patients in group A received a conventional scan with 120 kVp and contrast media of 320 mgI/ml. Patients in group B, 80 kVp and contrast media of 270 mgI/ml were used along with iterative reconstruction algorithm techniques. Image quality, radiation dose and the effectively consumed iodine amount between two groups were analyzed and compared.
Image quality of CTA of head-and-neck vessels obtained from patients in group B was significantly improved quantitatively and qualitatively. In addition, CT attenuation values in group B were also significantly higher than that in group A (p<0.001). Furthermore, compared with the protocol whereby 120 kVp and 320 mgI/dl were administrated, the mean radiation dose and consumed iodine amount in protocol B were also reduced by 50% and 15.6%, respectively (p<0.001).
With the help of iterative reconstruction algorithm techniques, the head-and-neck CTA with diagnostic quality can be adequately acquired with low tube voltage and low concentration contrast media. This method could be potentially extended to include any part of the body to reduce the risks related to ionizing radiation.
The high aqueous solubility, poor permeability, and absorption of berberine (BBR) result in its low plasma level after oral administration, which greatly limits its clinical application. BBR solid lipid nanoparticles (SLNs) were prepared to achieve improved bioavailability and prolonged effect. Developed SLNs showed homogeneous spherical shapes, small size (76.8 nm), zeta potential (7.87 mV), encapsulation efficiency (58%), and drug loading (4.2%). The power of X-ray diffraction combined with 1H nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy was employed to analyze chemical functional groups and the microstructure of BBR-SLNs, and indicated that the drug was wrapped in a lipid carrier. Single dose (50 mg/kg) oral pharmacokinetic studies in rats showed significant improvement (P<0.05) in the peak plasma concentration, area under the curve, and variance of mean residence time of BBR-SLNs when compared to BBR alone (P<0.05), suggesting improved bioavailability. Furthermore, oral administration of both BBR and BBR-SLNs significantly suppressed body weight gain, fasting blood glucose levels, and homeostasis assessment of insulin resistance, and ameliorated impaired glucose tolerance and insulin tolerance in db/db diabetic mice. BBR-SLNs at high dose (100 mg/kg) showed more potent effects when compared to an equivalent dose of BBR. Morphologic analysis demonstrated that BBR-SLNs potentially promoted islet function and protected the islet from regeneration. In conclusion, our study demonstrates that by entrapping BBR into SLNs the absorption of BBR and its anti-diabetic action were effectively enhanced.
berberine; solid lipid nanoparticles; pharmacokinetic; hypoglycemic effect
We examined the incidence trends of bladder and kidney cancers using a population-based cancer registration data.
Age-standardized incidence rates were analyzed using data from the Shanghai Cancer Registry during 1973 to 2005. Annual percentage changes and 95% confidence intervals were calculated to evaluate the incidence changes. Age-period-cohort analysis was further implemented to assess the contributions of age, period and cohort effects to the trends using the intrinsic estimator method.
In total, 12,676 bladder and 5,811 kidney cancer patients were registered in urban Shanghai. The age-standardized rates of bladder cancer in males increased from 6.39 to 7.66 per 100,000, or 0.62% per year, whereas the rates in females increased from 1.95 to 2.09 per 100,000, or 0.33% per year. For kidney cancer, the age-standardized rates in males increased from 1.20 to 5.64 per 100,000, or 6.98% per year. Similarly in females, the rates increased from 0.85 to 3.33 per 100,000, or 5.93% per year. Age-period-cohort analysis showed increasing curves of age and period effects but generally decreasing cohort effects for bladder and kidney cancers.
Our results show increasing incidence trends of bladder and kidney cancers in Chinese men and women, especially for kidney cancer.
Defining glioma subtypes based on objective genetic and molecular signatures may allow for a more rational, patient-specific approach to molecularly targeted therapy. However, prior studies attempting to classify glioma subtypes have given conflicting results. We aim to complement and validate the existing molecular classification system on a large number of samples from an East Asian population. A total of 225 samples from Chinese patients was selected for whole genome gene expression profiling. Consensus clustering was applied. Three major groups of gliomas were identified (referred to as G1, G2, and G3). The G1 subgroup correlates with a good clinical outcome, young age, and extremely high frequency of IDH1 mutations. Relative to the G1 subgroup, the G3 subgroup is correlated with a poorer clinical outcome, older age, and a very low rate of mutations in the IDH1 gene. Correlations of the G2 subgroup with respect to clinical outcome, age, and IDH1 mutation fall between the G1 and G3 subgroups. In addition, the G2 subtype was associated with a higher percentage of loss of 1p/19q when compared with G1 and G3 subtypes. Furthermore, our classification scheme was validated on 2 independent datasets derived from the cancer genome atlas (TCGA) and Rembrandt. With use of the TCGA classification system, proneural, neural, and mesenchymal, but not classical subtype, associated gene signatures were clearly defined. In summary, our results reveal that 3 main subtypes stably exist in Chinese patients with glioma. Our classification scheme may reflect the clinical and genetic alterations more clearly. Classical subtype–associated gene signature was not found in our dataset.
Chinese Glioma Genome Atlas; glioma; microarray; molecular classification
Little is known about the etiology of pancreatic cancer. Epidemiological studies on tea consumption and pancreatic cancer risk have been inconclusive. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the association between green tea drinking and the risk of pancreatic cancer in urban Shanghai, China.
In this population-based case-control study conducted in urban Shanghai, 908 cases of pancreatic cancer and 1067 healthy controls were recruited. Information on tea drinking, including type of tea, amount of tea consumption, temperature of tea, and the duration of regular tea drinking, were collected via interview questionnaire.
We examined the association of multiple tea drinking habits with the risk of pancreatic cancer. In women, regular green tea drinking was associated with 32% reduction of pancreatic cancer risk (OR 0.68, 95% CI 0.48–0.96), compared to those who did not drink tea regularly. Increased consumption and longer duration of tea drinking were both associated with reduced pancreatic cancer risk in women. Among regular tea drinkers, lower temperature of tea was associated with reduced risk of pancreatic cancer in both men and women, independent of amount or duration of tea drinking.
Habits of green tea drinking, including regular drinking, amount of consumption, persistence of the habit, and tea temperature, may lower pancreatic cancer risk.
pancreatic cancer; tea; case-control study; China
Cancer genomics is a rapidly growing discipline in which the genetic molecular basis of malignancy is studied at the scale of whole genomes. While the discipline has been successful with respect to identifying specific oncogenes and tumor suppressors involved in oncogenesis, it is also challenging our approach to managing patients suffering from this deadly disease. Specifically cancer genomics is driving clinical oncology to take a more molecular approach to diagnosis, prognostication, and treatment selection. We review here recent work undertaken in cancer genomics with an emphasis on translation of genomic findings. Finally, we discuss scientific challenges and research opportunities emerging from findings derived through analysis of tumors with high-depth sequencing.
Cancer; genomics; translation; personalized medicine
The goal of personalized medicine is to tailor a patient's treatment strategy on the basis of his or her unique genetic make-up. The field of oncology is beginning to incorporate many of the strategies of personalized medicine, especially within the realm of pharmacogenomics, which is the study of how inter-individual genetic variation determines drug response or toxicity. A main objective of pharmacogenomics is to facilitate physician decision-making regarding optimal drug selection, dose and treatment duration on a patient-by-patient basis. Recent advances in genome-wide genotyping and sequencing technologies have supported the discoveries of a number of pharmacogenetic markers that predict response to chemotherapy. However, effectively implementing these pharmacogenetic markers in the clinic remains a major challenge. This review focuses on the contribution of germline genetic variation to chemotherapeutic toxicity and response, and discusses the utility of genome-wide association studies and use of lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs) in pharmacogenomic studies. Furthermore, we highlight several recent examples of genetic variants associated with chemotherapeutic toxicity or response in both patient cohorts and LCLs, and discuss the challenges and future directions of pharmacogenomic discovery for cancer treatment.
Pharmacogenomics; chemotherapeutics; genome-wide association studies; International HapMap Project; clinical translation
Bone marrow-derived macrophages (BMMs) treated with granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) or macrophage colony-stimulating factor (M-CSF), differentiate into GM-CSF-induced mouse bone marrow-derived macrophages (GM-BMMs) or M-CSF-induced mouse bone marrow-derived macrophages (M-BMMs), which have an M1 or M2 profile, respectively. GM-BMMs produce large amounts of proinflammatory cytokines and mediate resistance to pathogens, whereas M-BMMs produce anti-inflammatory cytokines that contribute to tissue repair and remodeling. M-BMMs stimulated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) are in an antiinflammatory state, with an IL-12low IL-10high phenotype. However, the regulation of this process remains unclear. Klf10 belongs to the family of Krüppel-like transcription factors and was initially described as a TGF-β inducible early gene 1. IL-12p40 is upregulated in LPS-stimulated M-BMMs from Klf10-deficient mice, but downregulated during Klf10 overexpression. Klf11, another member of the Krüppel-like factor family, can also repress the production of IL-12p40. Furthermore, Klf10 binds to the CACCC element of the IL-12p40 promoter and inhibits its transcription. We have therefore identified Klf10 as a transcription factor that regulates the expression of IL-12p40 in M-BMMs.
IL-12p40; Inflammatory factor; Klf10; Macrophage; Transcription factor
Pichia pastoris is commonly used for the production of recombinant proteins due to its preferential secretion of recombinant proteins, resulting in lower production costs and increased yields of target proteins. However, not all recombinant proteins can be successfully secreted in P. pastoris. A computational method that predicts the likelihood of a protein being secreted into the supernatant would be of considerable value; however, to the best of our knowledge, no such tool has yet been developed. We present a machine-learning approach called Presep to assess the likelihood of a recombinant protein being secreted by P. pastoris based on its pseudo amino acid composition (PseAA). Using a 20-fold cross validation, Presep demonstrated a high degree of accuracy, with Matthews correlation coefficient (MCC) and overall accuracy (Q2) scores of 0.78 and 95%, respectively. Computational results were validated experimentally, with six β-galactosidase genes expressed in P. pastoris strain GS115 to verify Presep model predictions. A strong correlation (R2 = 0.967) was observed between Presep prediction secretion propensity and the experimental secretion percentage. Together, these results demonstrate the ability of the Presep model for predicting the secretion propensity of P. pastoris for a given protein. This model may serve as a valuable tool for determining the utility of P. pastoris as a host organism prior to initiating biological experiments. The Presep prediction tool can be freely downloaded at http://www.mobioinfor.cn/Presep.
Hyperglycemia causes oxidative stress that could damage vascular endothelial cells, leading to cardiovascular complications. The Vgf gene was identified as a nerve growth factor-responsive gene, and its protein product, VGF, is characterized by the presence of partially cleaved products. One of the VGF-derived peptides is TLQP-21, which is composed of 21 amino acids (residues 556–576). Past studies have reported that TLQP-21 could stimulate insulin secretion in pancreatic cells and protect these cells from apoptosis, which suggests that TLQP-21 has a potential function in diabetes therapy. Here, we explore the protective role of TLQP-21 against the high glucose-mediated injury of vascular endothelial cells. Using human umbilical vascular endothelial cells (HUVECs), we demonstrated that TLQP-21 (10 or 50 nM) dose-dependently prevented apoptosis under high-glucose (30 mmol/L) conditions (the normal glucose concentration is 5.6 mmol/L). TLQP-21 enhanced the expression of NAPDH, resulting in upregulation of glutathione (GSH) and a reduction in the levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS). TLQP-21 also upregulated the expression of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD), which is known as the main source of NADPH. Knockdown of G6PD almost completely blocked the increase of NADPH induced by TLQP-21, indicating that TLQP-21 functions mainly through G6PD to promote NADPH generation. In conclusion, TLQP-21 could increase G6PD expression, which in turn may increase the synthesis of NADPH and GSH, thereby partially restoring the redox status of vascular endothelial cells under high glucose injury. We propose that TLQP-21 is a promising drug for diabetes therapy.
5-Hydroxy-2-pyridone (2,5-DHP) is a central metabolic intermediate in catabolism of many pyridine derivatives, and has been suggested as a potential carcinogen. 2,5-DHP is frequently transformed to N-formylmaleamic acid (NFM) by a 2,5-DHP dioxygenase. Three hypotheses were formerly discussed for conversion of 2,5-DHP to maleamate. Based on enzymatic reactions of dioxygenase (Hpo) and N-formylamide deformylase (Nfo), we demonstrated that the dioxygenase does not catalyze the hydrolysis of NFM but rather that this activity is brought about by a separate deformylase. We report that the deformylase acts both on NFM and its trans-isomer, N-formylfumaramic acid (NFF), but the catalytic efficiency of Nfo for NFM is about 1,400 times greater than that for NFF. In addition, we uncover catalytic and structural characteristics of the new family that the Hpo belongs to, and support a potential 2-His-1-carboxylate motif (HX52HXD) by three-dimensional modeling and site-directed mutagenesis. This study provides a better understanding of 2,5-DHP catabolism.
Post-stroke depression (PSD) is commonly observed among stroke survivors. However, statistical analysis of such data is scarce in developing countries. The purpose of this study is to examine the incidence of PSD and its relationship with stroke characteristics in China.
This was a prospective hospital-based study. Stroke patients were assessed within two weeks after acute ischemic stroke onset and then reevaluated at three months. Hamilton Depression Scale (HAMD) was used for screening depression (PSD). Subjects with HAMD score of ≥7 were further assessed with the World Health Organization Composite International Diagnostic Interview. Stroke severity was measured by the National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS). Stroke outcome was measured by the modified Rankin Scale (mRS).
One hundred and two stroke patients were recruited, only ninety-one patients completed del period (men = 53, 63.74%), with mean age 60.0±10.4 years (range, 34–82 years). The incidence of PSD was 27.47% two weeks after stroke. The occurrence of PSD was unrelated with age, stroke type, stroke lesion and the history of disease. In univariate analysis gender, PSD was correlated with female gender. In multivariate logistic regression analysis, poor stroke outcome (mRS≥3) (OR 12.113, CI 1.169 to 125.59, P<0.05) was the important predictors of PSD.
The study indicated that gender, functional dependence and stroke outcome are determinants of PSD occurrence during the first 2 weeks after stroke in China.
Shape memory alloy (SMA) staples in nickel titanium with shape memory effect are effective for spinal growth control. This study was designed to evaluate the biomechanical properties of the staples and observe the stability of the fixed segments spine after the staples were implanted. According to the vertical distance of the vertebrae, SMA staples of 5, 6.5, and 8 mm were designed. The recovery stress of 24 SMA staples in three groups was measured. The pullout strength of SMA staples and stainless steel staples in each functional spinal unit was measured. Each of the six fresh specimens was divided into three conditions: normal, single staple, and double staples. Under each condition, the angle and torque of spinal movements in six directions were tested. Results show that the differences in recovery stress and maximum pullout strength between groups were statistically significant. In left and right bending, flextion, and extention, the stability of spine was decreased in conditions of single staple and double staples. Biomechanical function of SMA staples was superior to stainless steel staple. SMA staples have the function of hemiepiphyseal compression and kyphosis and scoliosis model of thoracic vertebrae in goat could be successfully created by the fusionless technique.
Dendritic cells (DCs) play a key role in the initiation stage of an antigen-specific immune response. A variety of tumor-derived factors (TDFs) can suppress DC maturation and function, resulting in defects in the tumor-specific immune response. To identify unknown TDFs that may suppress DCs maturation and function, we established a high-throughput screening technology based on a human liver tumor T7 phage cDNA library and screened all of the proteins derived from hepatoma cells that potentially interact with immature DCs. Growth/differentiation factor-15 (GDF-15) was detected and chosen for further study. By incubation of DCs cultures with GDF-15, we demonstrate that GDF-15 can inhibit surface protrusion formation during DC maturation; suppress the membrane expression of CD83, CD86 and HLA-DR on DCs; enhance phagocytosis by DCs; reduce IL-12 and elevate TGF-β1 secretion by DCs; inhibit T cell stimulation and cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) activation by DCs. By building tumor-bearing mouse models, we demonstrate that GDF-15 can inhibit the ability of DCs to stimulate a tumor-specific immune response in vivo. These results indicate that GDF-15 may be one of the critical molecules that inhibit DC maturation and function and are involved in tumor immune escape. Thus, GDF-15 may be a novel target in tumor immunotherapy.
STAMP2 is a counterregulator of inflammation and insulin resistance. The aim of this study is to investigate whether activation of STAMP2 improves insulin resistance by regulating macrophage polarization in adipose tissues. The diabetic ApoE−/−/LDLR−/− mouse model was induced by high-fat diet and low-dose streptozotocin. Samples were obtained from epididymal, subcutaneous and brown adipose tissues. Infiltration of M1/M2 macrophages and inflammatory cytokines were investigated by immunohistochemistry. We then used gene overexpression to investigate the effect of STAMP2 on macrophages infiltration and polarization and inflammatory cytokines expression. Our results showed that infiltration of macrophages, the ratio of M1/M2 macrophages and the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines were enhanced and STAMP2 was downregulated in adipose tissues of diabetic ApoE−/−/LDLR−/− mice compared with control mice. STAMP2 gene overexpression could significantly reduce macrophages infiltration, the ratio of M1/M2 macrophages and the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines in epididymal and brown adipose tissues, improving insulin resistance. Our results suggested that STAMP2 gene overexpression may improve insulin resistance via regulating macrophage polarization in visceral and brown adipose tissues.
Artemether is one of the artemisinin derivatives that are active ingredients in antimalarial drugs. Counterfeit and substandard antimalarial drugs have become a serious problem, which demands reliable analytical tools and implementation of strict regulation of drug quality. Structural similarity among artemisinin analogs is a challenge to develop immunoassays that are specific to artemisinin derivatives. To produce specific antibodies to artemether, we used microbial fermentation of artemether to obtain 9-hydroxyartemether, which was subsequently used to prepare a 9-O-succinylartemether hapten for conjugation with ovalbumin as the immunogen. A monoclonal antibody (mAb), designated as 2G12E1, was produced with high specificity to artemether. 2G12E1 showed low cross reactivities to dihydroartemisinin, artemisinin, artesunate and other major antimalarial drugs. An indirect competitive enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (icELISA) developed showed a concentration causing 50% of inhibition for artemether as 3.7 ng mL−1 and a working range of 0.7–19 ng mL−1. The icELISA was applied for determination of artemether content in different commercial drugs and the results were comparable to those determined by high-performance liquid chromatography analysis. In comparison with reported broad cross activity of anti-artemisinin mAbs, the most notable advantage of the 2G12E1-based ELISA is its high specificity to artemether only.
The aim of this study was to determine the clinical significance of the results of screening of newborn hearing and the incidence of deafness-susceptibility genes. One thousand newborn babies in the Handan Center Hospital (Handan, China) underwent screening of hearing and deafness-susceptibility genes. The first screening test was carried out using otoacoustic emissions (OAEs). Babies with hearing loss who failed to pass the initial screening were scheduled for rescreening at 42 days after birth. Cord blood was used for the screening of deafness-susceptibility genes, namely the GJB2, SLC26A4 and mitochondrial 12S rRNA (MTRNR1) genes. Among the 1,000 neonates that underwent the first hearing screening, 25 exhibited left-sided hearing loss, 21 exhibited right-sided hearing loss and 15 cases had binaural hearing loss. After rescreening 42 days later, only one of the initial 61 cases exhibited hearing loss under OAE testing. The neonatal deafness gene tests showed two cases with 1555A>G mutation and two cases with 1494C>T mutation of the MTRNR1 gene. In the SLC26A4 gene screening, four cases exhibited the heterozygous IVS7-2A>G mutation and one case exhibited heterozygous 1226G>A mutation. In the GJB2 gene screening, two cases exhibited the homozygous 427C>T mutation and 10 exhibited the heterozygous 235delC mutation. The genetic screening revealed 21 newborns with mutations in the three deafness-susceptibility genes. The overall carrier rate was 2.1% (21/1,000). The association of hearing and gene screening may be the promising screening strategy for the diagnosis of hearing loss.
newborn; hearing screening; gene screening; MassARRAY platform; mitochondrial 12S rRNA; GJB2 gene; SLC26A4 gene
Streptococcus agalactiae, also referred to as Group B Streptococcus (GBS), is a frequent resident of the rectovaginal tract in humans, and a major cause of neonatal infection. In addition, S. agalactiae is a known fish pathogen, which compromises food safety and represents a zoonotic hazard. The complete genome sequence of the piscine S. agalactiae isolate GD201008-001 was compared with 14 other piscine, human and bovine strains to explore their virulence determinants, evolutionary relationships and the genetic basis of host tropism in S. agalactiae.
The pan-genome of S. agalactiae is open and its size increases with the addition of newly sequenced genomes. The core genes shared by all isolates account for 50 ~ 70% of any single genome. The Chinese piscine isolates GD201008-001 and ZQ0910 are phylogenetically distinct from the Latin American piscine isolates SA20-06 and STIR-CD-17, but are closely related to the human strain A909, in the context of the clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPRs), prophage, virulence-associated genes and phylogenetic relationships. We identified a unique 10 kb gene locus in Chinese piscine strains.
Isolates from cultured tilapia in China have a close genomic relationship with the human strain A909. Our findings provide insight into the pathogenesis and host-associated genome content of piscine S. agalactiae isolated in China.
Streptococcus agalactiae; Tilapia; Pan-genome; China