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1.  Carriers of Loss-of-Function Mutations in EXT Display Impaired Pancreatic Beta-Cell Reserve Due to Smaller Pancreas Volume 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(12):e115662.
Exotosin (EXT) proteins are involved in the chain elongation step of heparan sulfate (HS) biosynthesis, which is intricately involved in organ development. Loss of function mutations (LOF) in EXT1 and EXT2 result in hereditary exostoses (HME). Interestingly, HS plays a role in pancreas development and beta-cell function, and genetic variations in EXT2 are associated with an increased risk for type 2 diabetes mellitus. We hypothesized that loss of function of EXT1 or EXT2 in subjects with hereditary multiple exostoses (HME) affects pancreatic insulin secretion capacity and development. We performed an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) followed by hyperglycemic clamps to investigate first-phase glucose-stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS) in HME patients and age and gender matched non-affected relatives. Pancreas volume was assessed with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). OGTT did not reveal significant differences in glucose disposal, but there was a markedly lower GSIS in HME subjects during hyperglycemic clamp (iAUC HME: 0.72 [0.46–1.16] vs. controls 1.53 [0.69–3.36] nmol·l−1·min−1, p<0.05). Maximal insulin response following arginine challenge was also significantly attenuated (iAUC HME: 7.14 [4.22–10.5] vs. controls 10.2 [7.91–12.70] nmol·l−1·min−1 p<0.05), indicative of an impaired beta-cell reserve. MRI revealed a significantly smaller pancreatic volume in HME subjects (HME: 72.0±15.8 vs. controls 96.5±26.0 cm3 p = 0.04). In conclusion, loss of function of EXT proteins may affect beta-cell mass and insulin secretion capacity in humans, and render subjects at a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes when exposed to environmental risk factors.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0115662
PMCID: PMC4277348  PMID: 25541963
2.  Chinese Consensus Statement on the Evaluation and Intervention of Collateral Circulation for Ischemic Stroke 
CNS Neuroscience & Therapeutics  2014;20(3):202-208.
Background
Collateral circulation is becoming more significant in the individual management strategy of ischemic stroke, there are more data updated recently.
Aim
To make the further acknowledgment of the evaluation and how to improving collateral flow, for better treatment selection.
Method
A panel of experts on stroke providing related statement based on review the results from most up-to-date clinical research.
Results
DSA is the gold standard in evaluating all levels of collaterals. CTA can be used for evaluating leptomeningeal collaterals, MRA for CoW, TCD or TCCS can be used as screening tool for primary evaluation. The treatment modalities include direct interventions, such as Extracranial–Intracranial bypass, and indirect interventions, as External counterpulsation and pressor therapy. The consideration of methodology to augment and improve can be considered on an individual basis.
Discussion
In this consensus, we interpret the definition, neuroimaging evaluation, intervention and potential strategy on collaterals in the future.
Conclusion
Assessment of collateral circulation is crucial for selecting therapeutic options, predicting infarction volume and making prognosis after ischemic stroke. Data is still needed to provide therapeutic evidence for many new developed technologies. Until more evidence is available, the clinical significance of applying the new technologies is unclear and perhaps limited.
doi:10.1111/cns.12226
PMCID: PMC4233984  PMID: 24495505
Collateral circulation; Consensus; Evaluation; Intervention; Ischemic stroke
3.  Excretion of Urinary Orosomucoid 1 Protein Is Elevated in Patients with Chronic Heart Failure 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(9):e107550.
Easily screening markers for early detection of chronic heart failure (CHF) are lacking. We identified twenty differently expressed proteins including orosomucoid 1(ORM1) in urine between patients with CHF and normal controls by proteomic methods. Bioinformatics analyses suggested ORM1 could be used for further analysis. After verification by western blotting, the urinary levels of ORM1 were quantified with enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) by correcting for creatinine expression. The ORM1-Cr was significantly elevated in CHF patients than normal controls (6498.83±4300.21 versus 2102.26±1069.24 ng/mg). Furthermore, a Spearman analysis indicated that the urinary ORM1 levels had a high positive correlation with the classification of CHF, and the multivariate analysis suggested that the urinary ORM1 content was associated with the plasma amino-terminal pro- brain natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) (OR: 2.106, 95% CI: 1.213–3.524, P = 0.002) and the New York Heart Association (NYHA) classification (OR: 3.019, 95% CI: 1.329–4.721, P<0.001). In addition, receiving operating curve (ROC) analyses suggested that an optimum cut-off value of 2484.98 ng/mg with 90.91% sensitivity and 85.48% specificity, respectively, could be used for the diagnosis of CHF. To sum up, our findings indicate that ORM1 could be a potential novel urinary biomarker for the early detection of CHF.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0107550
PMCID: PMC4162620  PMID: 25215505
4.  Enzymatic synthesis of heparin related polysaccharides on sensor chips: Rapid screening of heparin–protein interactions 
The biological roles of heparin (HP) and heparan sulfate (HS) are mediated mainly through their interaction with proteins. In the present work, we provide a rapid method for screening HP/HS–protein interactions providing structural data on the key sulfo groups that participate in the binding. A library of polysaccharides structurally related to HP was prepared by immobilizing the biotinylated N-sulfated K5 polysaccharide (N-sulfoheparosan) on sensor chips followed by selective modification of this polysaccharide with enzymes that participate in HP/HS biosynthesis. The polysaccharides synthesized on the surface of the sensor chips differ in the number and position of sulfo groups present both on uronic acid and glucosamine residues. Surface plasmon resonance was used to measure the interaction of each member of this polysaccharide library with antithrombin III (ATIII), to afford structural information on sulfo groups required for this HP/HS–protein interaction. This method is viewed as widely applicable for the study of the structure–activity relationship (SAR) of HP/HS–protein interactions.
doi:10.1016/j.bbrc.2005.11.051
PMCID: PMC4140613  PMID: 16310167
Heparin; Surface plasmon resonance; Sulfo group; Enzymatic synthesis antithrombin
5.  Affinity, Kinetic, and Structural Study of the Interaction of 3-O-Sulfotransferase Isoform 1 with Heparan Sulfate† 
Biochemistry  2006;45(16):5122-5128.
The 3-O-sulfonation of glucosamine residues in heparan sulfate (HS) by 3-O-sulfotransferase (3-OST) is a key substitution that is present in HS sequences of biological importance, in particular HS anticoagulant activity. Six different isoforms of 3-OST have been identified that exhibit different substrate specificity. In this paper the affinity and kinetics of the interaction between 3-O-sulfotransferase isoform 1 (3-OST-1) and HS have been examined using surface plasmon resonance (SPR). 3-OST-1 binds with micomolar affinity to HS (KD= 2.79 µM), and this interaction is apparently independent of the presence of the coenzyme, 3′-phosphoadenosine 5′-phosphosulfate (PAPS). A conformational change in the complex has also been detected, supporting data from previous studies. Selected 3-OST-1 mutants have provided valuable information of amino acid residues that participate in 3-OST-1 interaction with HS substrate and its catalytic activity. The results from this study contribute to understanding the substrate specificity among the 3-OST isoforms and in the mechanism of 3-OST-1-catalyzed biosynthesis of anticoagulant HS.
doi:10.1021/bi052403n
PMCID: PMC4129659  PMID: 16618101
6.  Stable RAGE-Heparan Sulfate Complexes are Essential for Signal Transduction 
ACS chemical biology  2013;8(7):1611-1620.
RAGE (Receptor for Advanced Glycation End-Products) has emerged as a major receptor that mediates vascular inflammation. Signaling through RAGE by damage-associated molecular pattern molecules often leads to uncontrolled inflammation that exacerbates the impact of the underlying disease. Oligomerization of RAGE is believed to play an essential role in signal transduction, but the molecular mechanism of oligomerization remains elusive. Here we report that RAGE activation of Erk1/2 phosphorylation on endothelial cells in response to a number of ligands depends on a mechanism that involves heparan sulfate-induced hexamerization of the RAGE extracellular domain. Structural studies of the extracellular V-C1 domain-dodecasaccharide complex by X-ray diffraction and small-angle X-ray scattering revealed that the hexamer consists of a trimer of dimers, with a stoichiometry of 2:1 RAGE:dodecasaccharide. Mutagenesis studies mapped the heparan sulfate binding site and the interfacial surface between the monomers, and demonstrated that electrostatic interactions with heparan sulfate and inter-monomer hydrophobic interactions work in concert to stabilize the dimer. The importance of oligomerization was demonstrated by inhibition of signaling with a new epitope-defined monoclonal antibody that specifically targets oligomerization. These findings indicate that RAGE-heparan sulfate oligomeric complexes are essential for signaling and that interfering with RAGE oligomerization might be of therapeutic value.
doi:10.1021/cb4001553
PMCID: PMC3806902  PMID: 23679870
7.  Current animal models of bladder cancer: Awareness of translatability (Review) 
Experimental animal models are crucial in the study of biological behavior and pathological development of cancer, and evaluation of the efficacy of novel therapeutic or preventive agents. A variety of animal models that recapitulate human urothelial cell carcinoma have thus far been established and described, while models generated by novel techniques are emerging. At present a number of reviews on animal models of bladder cancer comprise the introduction of one type of method, as opposed to commenting on and comparing all classifications, with the merits of a certain method being explicit but the shortcomings not fully clarified. Thus the aim of the present study was to provide a summary of the currently available animal models of bladder cancer including transplantable (which could be divided into xenogeneic or syngeneic, heterotopic or orthotopic), carcinogen-induced and genetically engineered models in order to introduce their materials and methods and compare their merits as well as focus on the weaknesses, difficulties in operation, associated problems and translational potential of the respective models. Findings of these models would provide information for authors and clinicians to select an appropriate model or to judge relevant preclinical study findings. Pertinent detection methods are therefore briefly introduced and compared.
doi:10.3892/etm.2014.1837
PMCID: PMC4113637  PMID: 25120584
animal model; bladder cancer; carcinogen-induced; genetically engineered mouse; translatability
8.  Insulin and risk of diabetic retinopathy in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus: data from a meta-analysis of seven cohort studies 
Diagnostic Pathology  2014;9:130.
Background
Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is a chronic incurable disease associated with multi-systemic complications. The chronic complications related to T2DM induce growing burden to the national health system. Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is the most serious ocular complication associated with T2DM and one of the leading causes of secondary blindness. The association between insulin use and DR risk has also been reported in different studies.
Methods
In order to obtain more informative results on the relationship between insulin intake and risk of DR and to take into account more recent evidence, we conducted this meta-analysis by including all available relevant cohort studies. A systemic literature search was performed via electronic databases inclu-apding Pubmed and EMBASE to identify all available relevant studies until February 2014. A total of seven cohort studies were included in this meta-analysis. In this meta-analysis, we conducted a rigorous search of all available published cohort studies to quantify the possible association between insulin use and incidental DR in individuals with type 2 diabetes.
Results
Although major heterogeneity existed in this study, the significant association between insulin use and risk of DR was detected. The subgroup analyses by study design, region, data source and adjustment of HbA1c generated similar results. Also, when the DM duration was adjusted, no result was reported with significant difference.
Conclusion
The results of this meta-analysis helps to better explore the role of insulin use in DR risk development. Meanwhile, our results are statistically robust and yield important conclusions. The underlying mechanism by which insulin use increases DR risk should be explored in future in vitro and in vivo studies. Additional large-scale, well-designed studies with sufficient data are needed to confirm our findings.
Virtual Slides
The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here: http://www.diagnosticpathology.diagnomx.eu/vs/2003724731291657
doi:10.1186/1746-1596-9-130
PMCID: PMC4227060  PMID: 24972631
Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM); Insulin; Diabetic retinopathy (DR); Meta-analysis
9.  Fish intake and risk of heart failure: A meta-analysis of five prospective cohort studies 
The findings on the association between fish intake and the risk of heart failure (HF) have been inconsistent. The purpose of this study was to clarify this potential association. We searched for relevant studies in the PubMed database through January 2012 and manually reviewed references. Five independent prospective cohort studies involving 5,273 cases and 144,917 participants were included. The summary relative risk estimates (SRRE) based on the highest compared with the lowest category of fish consumption were estimated by variance-based meta-analysis. In addition, we performed sensitivity and dose-response analyses to examine the association. Overall, an absence of an association between fish intake and HF was observed (SRRE=1.00; 95% CI, 0.81–1.24). However, fried fish intake positively associated with HF (SRRE=1.40; 95% CI, 1.22–1.61). In addition, dose-response analysis of fried fish suggested that each increment of six fried fish per month corresponded to a 37% increase of HF rate (RR=1.37; 95% CI, 1.20–1.56). In conclusion, our findings suggest that there is no significant association between fish intake and risk of HF, with the exception of a possible positive correlation with individuals comsuming fried fish, based on a limited number of studies. Future studies are required to confirm these findings.
doi:10.3892/etm.2012.605
PMCID: PMC3503629  PMID: 23181122
fish; nutrition; heart failure; meta-analysis
10.  Association of a Common Variant at 10q26 and Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia Aggressiveness in Han Chinese Descent 
Recent studies reported that rs2252004 at 10q26 was significantly associated with prostate cancer (PCa) risk in a Japanese population and was subsequently confirmed in a Chinese population. We aimed to assess the relationship between this locus and risk/aggressiveness of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). The current study included 426 BPH cases and 1,008 controls from Xinhua Hospital in Shanghai, China. All BPH patients were treated with α-adrenergic blockers and 5α-reductase inhibitors for at least 9 months. Associations between rs2252004 and BPH risk/aggressiveness were tested using logistic regression. Associations between rs2252004 and clinical parameters including International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS), total prostate volume (TPV), total PSA (tPSA), and free PSA (fPSA) were evaluated by linear regression. Allele “A” in rs2252004 was significantly associated with increased risk for aggressiveness of BPH in a Chinese population (OR = 1.42, 95% CI: 1.04–1.96, P = 0.03). Patients with the genotype “A/A” (homozygous minor allele) had an increase of IPSS and TPV after treatment (P = 0.045 and 0.024, resp.). No association was observed between rs2252004, BPH risk, and baseline clinicopathological traits (All P > 0.05). Our study is the first to show that rs2252004 at 10q26 was associated with BPH aggressiveness and efficacy of BPH treatment.
doi:10.1155/2013/820849
PMCID: PMC3747368  PMID: 23984071
11.  Correction: Aspirin Use and Risk of Age-Related Macular Degeneration: A Meta-Analysis 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(6):10.1371/annotation/bc36f952-ec0c-45d0-bedd-15429017791e.
doi:10.1371/annotation/bc36f952-ec0c-45d0-bedd-15429017791e
PMCID: PMC3692953
12.  Changes in Retinal Morphology, Electroretinogram and Visual Behavior after Transient Global Ischemia in Adult Rats 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(6):e65555.
The retina is a light-sensitive tissue of the central nervous system that is vulnerable to ischemia. The pathological mechanism underlying retinal ischemic injury is not fully understood. The purpose of this study was to investigate structural and functional changes of different types of rat retinal neurons and visual behavior following transient global ischemia. Retinal ischemia was induced using a 4-vessel occlusion model. Compared with the normal group, the number of βIII-tubulin positive retinal ganglion cells and calretinin positive amacrine cells were reduced from 6 h to 48 h following ischemia. The number of recoverin positive cone bipolar cells transiently decreased at 6 h and 12 h after ischemia. However, the fluorescence intensity of rhodopsin positive rod cells and fluorescent peanut agglutinin positive cone cells did not change after reperfusion. An electroretinogram recording showed that the a-wave, b-wave, oscillatory potentials and the photopic negative response were completely lost during ischemia. The amplitudes of the a- and b-waves were partially recovered at 1 h after ischemia, and returned to the control level at 48 h after reperfusion. However, the amplitudes of oscillatory potentials and the photopic negative response were still reduced at 48 h following reperfusion. Visual behavior detection showed there was no significant change in the time spent in the dark chamber between the control and 48 h group, but the distance moved, mean velocity in the black and white chambers and intercompartmental crosses were reduced at 48 h after ischemia. These results indicate that transient global ischemia induces dysfunction of retinal ganglion cells and amacrine cells at molecular and ERG levels. However, transient global ischemia in a 17 minute duration does not appear to affect photoreceptors.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0065555
PMCID: PMC3679137  PMID: 23776500
13.  Sudden visual loss in the untreated eye of a patient with neovascular glaucoma following an intravitreal bevacizumab injection: A case report 
Oncology Letters  2013;6(2):445-447.
The current study presents the case of a patient with a rare adverse event characterized by sudden vision loss in the untreated eye following an intravitreal injection of bevacizumab for neovascular glaucoma (NVG). The patient was diagnosed with NVG refractory to Ahmed glaucoma valve implantation and a vitreous hemorrhage in the right eye, which was treated with 1.25 mg intravitreal bevacizumab. Ten days after the bevacizumab injection, the left eye exhibited sudden visual loss. The patient’s best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) decreased from 80 to 25 letters [Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study (ETDRS) chart]. A fundus examination revealed a swollen optic disk with unclear boundaries, retinal hemorrhages and thinning retinal vessels. Fundus fluorescein angiography (FA) identified hyperfluorescence in the optic disk and an enlarged foveal avascular zone. The visual field revealed quadrantal defects that confirmed the diagnosis of anterior ischemic optic neuropathy associated with ischemic maculopathy. Six months later, following medical treatment, the patient’s BCVA was increased to 44 letters. However, a clinical examination found neovessels with one papilla disk (PD) above the disk. Laser photocoagulation treatment was administered immediately. The area of neovessels above the disk was reduced to 1/4 PD at the last follow-up. In conclusion, although intravitreal anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (Bevacizumab) is an effective treatment for neovascular ocular diseases, its adverse effects must be taken into consideration for the treatment of NVG. Photocoagulation remains an effective treatment for proliferative diabetic retinopathy.
doi:10.3892/ol.2013.1382
PMCID: PMC3789081  PMID: 24137344
anti-vascular endothelial growth factor; neovascular glaucoma; bevacizumab; anterior ischemic optic neuropathy
14.  Aspirin Use and Risk of Age-Related Macular Degeneration: A Meta-Analysis 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(3):e58821.
Background
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the main cause of blindness and the curative options are limited. The objective of this meta-analysis was to determine the association between aspirin use and risk of AMD.
Methods
A comprehensive literature search was performed in PubMed, Embase, Web of Science, and reference lists. A meta-analysis was performed by STATA software.
Results
Ten studies involving 171729 individuals examining the association between aspirin use and risk of AMD were included. Among the included studies, 2 were randomized-controlled trials (RCTs), 4 were case-control studies and 4 were cohort studies. The relative risks (RRs) were pooled using a random-effects model. Relative risks with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) of aspirin use as a risk for AMD. The pooled RR of 10 included studies between the use of aspirin and risk of AMD was 1.09 (95% CI, 0.96–1.24). The same result was detected in early and late stage AMD subgroup analysis. In the subgroup analyses, the pooled RR of RCTs, case-control studies and cohort studies were 0.81 (95% CI, 0.64–1.02), 1.02 (95% CI, 0.92–1.14) and 1.08 (95% CI, 0.91–1.28), respectively.
Conclusions
The use of aspirin was not associated with the risk of AMD.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0058821
PMCID: PMC3597550  PMID: 23516561
16.  Associations of MMP1, 3, 9 and TIMP3 Genes Polymorphism with Isolated Systolic Hypertension in Chinese Han Population 
Background and aims: Large artery stiffness and endothelial dysfunction are the predominant characteristic of isolated systolic hypertension. Recently studies have revealed MMP1, 3, 9 and TIMP3 Genes polymorphism were associated with arterial stiffness, but the relationship with isolated systolic hypertension were not further studied. This study was to investigate the associations of MMP1,3,9 and TIMP3 Genes polymorphism with isolated systolic hypertension. Methods: We identified the genotype of the genes in 503 patients with isolated systolic hypertension, 481 essential hypertension patients with elevated diastolic blood pressure and 244 age-matched normotensive controls for 5 SNPs and detected the brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity, flow-mediated dilatation, endothelin-1 and nitric oxide among the participants. Results: Multinomial logistic analyses showed that the 5A allele of rs3025058(5A/6A) in MMP3 and the T allele of rs3918242(C-1562T) in MMP9 were significantly associated with isolated systolic hypertension after adjusted by age, triglyceride, low-density lipoprotein (P<0.001, Pcorr<0.003; P=0.009, Pcorr=0.027). The 5A/G/C and 6A/A/T haplotypes were significantly associated with isolated systolic hypertension (Permutation p=0.0258; Permutation p=0.000002). In addition, the brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity of different genotypes for the 5A/6A and C-1562T polymorphisms was significantly highest in 5A or T homozygotes (P<0.01), however, the flow-mediated dilatation and nitric oxide were markedly lowest in 5A or T homozygotes (P<0.01). Conclusion: MMP3 and MMP9 genes variant seem to contribute to the development of isolated systolic hypertension by affecting arterial stiffness and endothelial function.
doi:10.7150/ijms.5728
PMCID: PMC3689878  PMID: 23794948
artery stiffness; endothelial function; gene; isolated systolic hypertension; polymorphism.
18.  Indocyanine Green-Assisted Internal Limiting Membrane Peeling in Macular Hole Surgery: A Meta-Analysis 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(11):e48405.
Background
The opinion of application of indocyanine green (ICG) in the macular hole surgery was contradictory. Here we conducted a meta-analysis to evaluate the effect of in internal limiting membrane (ILM) peeling for macular hole surgery.
Methods and Findings
We searched electronic databases for comparative studies published before July 2012 of ILM peeling with and without ICG. Twenty-two studies including 1585 eyes were included. Visual acuity (VA) improvement, including the postoperative rate of ≥20/40 VA gained (OR, 0.65; 95% CI, 0.43 to 0.97; P = 0.033) and increased LogMAR (WMD, −0.09; 95% CI, −0.16 to −0.02; P = 0.011), was less in the ICG group. The risk of visual field defects was greater in the ICG group than in the non-ICG group. There was no significant difference in the rate of anatomical outcomes between ILM peeling procedures performed with and without ICG. RPE changes and other postoperative complications were not significantly different between the ICG and non-ICG groups. An additional analysis showed that the VA improvement of the ICG group was less than the non-ICG group only within the first year of follow up. A subgroup analysis showed that the rate of VA improvement was lower in the ICG group than in other adjuncts group. A higher rate of secondary closure and less VA improvement were observed in a high proportion (>0.1%) of the ICG group. A sensitivity analysis after the randomized-controlled trials were excluded from the meta-analysis demonstrated no differences compared with the overall results.
Conclusions
This meta-analysis demonstrated that there is no evidence of clinical superiority in outcomes for ICG-assisted ILM peeling procedure over the non-ICG one. The toxicity of ICG should be considered when choosing the various staining methods.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0048405
PMCID: PMC3492355  PMID: 23144875
19.  Stage-Dependent Regulation of Mammary Ductal Branching by Heparan Sulfate and HGF-cMet Signaling 
Developmental biology  2011;355(2):394-403.
Specific interactions of growth factors with heparan sulfate are thought to regulate stages of branching morphogenesis in developing mammalian organs, but the evidence derives mostly from studies of explanted tissues or cell culture. We recently provided in vivo evidence that inactivation of Ndst1, the predominant N-deacetylase/N-sulfotransferase gene essential for the formation of mature heparan sulfate, results in a highly specific defect in murine lobuloalveolar development. Here, we demonstrate a highly penetrant dramatic defect in primary branching by mammary epithelial-specific inactivation of Ext1, a subunit of the copolymerase complex that catalyzes the formation of the heparan sulfate chain. In contrast to Ext1 deletion, inactivation of Hs2st (which encodes an enzyme required for 2-O-sulfation of uronic acids in heparan sulfate) did not inhibit ductal formation but displayed markedly decreased secondary and ductal side-branches as well as fewer bifurcated terminal end buds. Targeted conditional deletion of c-Met, the receptor for HGF, in mammary epithelial cells showed similar defects in secondary and ductal side-branching, but did not result in any apparent defect in bifurcation of terminal end buds. Although there is published evidence indicating a role for 2-O sulfation in HGF binding, primary epithelial cells isolated from Hs2st conditional deletions were able to activate Erk in the presence of HGF and there appeared to be only a slight reduction in HGF-mediated c-Met phosphorylation in these cells compared to control. Thus, both c-Met and Hs2st play important, but potentially independent, roles in secondary and ductal side-branching. When considered together with previous studies of Ndst1-deficient glands, the data presented here raise the possibility of partially-independent regulation by heparan sulfate-dependent pathways of primary ductal branching, terminal end bud bifurcation, secondary branching, ductal side-branching and lobuloalveolar formation.
doi:10.1016/j.ydbio.2011.04.035
PMCID: PMC3118867  PMID: 21586278
sulfotransferase; heparan sulfate; proteoglycans; branching morphogenesis; growth factor signaling
20.  Transitional Zone Index and Intravesical Prostatic Protrusion in Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia Patients: Correlations according to Treatment Received and Other Clinical Data 
Korean Journal of Urology  2012;53(4):253-257.
Purpose
The aim of this research was to assess the value of the transitional zone index (TZI) and intravesical prostatic protrusion (IPP) from transrectal ultrasonography in evaluating the severity and progression of disease by analyzing the relationship between the 2 parameters and symptoms, clinical history, and urodynamics in benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) patients undergoing different treatment.
Materials and Methods
A total of 203 patients receiving medication and 162 patients who underwent transurethral resection of the prostate because of BPH were enrolled in this retrospective analysis. The clinical history and subjective and objective examination results of all patients were recorded and compared after being classified by TZI and IPP level. Linear regression was used to find correlations between IPP, TZI, and urodynamics.
Results
The 2 parameters were found to differ significantly between patients receiving medication and patients undergoing surgical therapy (p<0.05). PSA, maximum flow rate (Qmax), detrusor pressure at Qmax (PdetQmax), and the bladder outlet obstruction index (BOOI) differed according to various TZI levels (p<0.05). In addition, the voiding symptom score, Qmax, and BOOI of subgroups with various IPP levels were also significantly different (p<0.05). Both TZI and IPP had significant effects on Qmax, BOOI, and PdetQmax (p<0.05) and the incidence of acute urinary retention (p=0.000).
Conclusions
The results demonstrated that both TZI and IPP had favorable value for assessing severity and progression in patients with BPH. Further studies are needed to confirm whether the two parameters have predictive value in the efficacy of BPH treatment and could be considered as factors in the selection of therapy.
doi:10.4111/kju.2012.53.4.253
PMCID: PMC3332136  PMID: 22536468
Benign prostatic hyperplasia; Medication; Transurethral resection of the prostate; Ultrasonography; Urodynamics
21.  The prevalence of canine Leishmania infantum infection in Sichuan Province, southwestern China detected by real time PCR 
Parasites & Vectors  2011;4:173.
Background
Visceral leishmaniasis (VL) is endemic in western China, and becoming an important public health concern. Infected dogs are the main reservoir for Leishmania infantum, and a potential sentinel for human VL in endemic areas. In the present study we investigated the prevalence of Leishmania DNA in dogs from Wenchuan, Heishui and Jiuzhaigou County in Sichuan Province, southwestern China, which are important endemic areas of zoonotic VL, detected by real time PCR. The results will help to design control strategies against visceral leishmaniasis in dogs and humans.
Results
The overall prevalence of Leishmania DNA in dogs was 24.8% (78/314) in Sichuan Province, with the positive rate of 23.5% (23/98) in Wenchuan County, 28.2% (20/71) in Heishui County, and 24.1% (35/145) in Jiuzhaigou County, and no significant difference was observed among the three counties (P > 0.05). The dogs were further allocated to different groups based on sexes, ages and external clinical symptoms. The logistic regression analysis revealed that a higher prevalence was found in older and external symptomatic dogs, compared to that of younger and asymptomatic dogs (P < 0.05).
Conclusions
The results revealed that L. infantum infection in dogs is widespread in Sichuan Province, southwestern China, which has a public health significance, due to its contribution to the transmission of the infection to humans by sandflies. It is necessary to take measures, including treatment or eradication of infected dogs, to control canine leishmaniasis, which could be helpful to reduce human VL in this area.
doi:10.1186/1756-3305-4-173
PMCID: PMC3179450  PMID: 21910882
Leishmania; Dogs; Prevalence; Real time PCR; China
22.  Glycosaminoglycan Binding Facilitates Entry of a Bacterial Pathogen into Central Nervous Systems 
PLoS Pathogens  2011;7(6):e1002082.
Certain microbes invade brain microvascular endothelial cells (BMECs) to breach the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and establish central nervous system (CNS) infection. Here we use the leading meningitis pathogen group B Streptococcus (GBS) together with insect and mammalian infection models to probe a potential role of glycosaminoglycan (GAG) interactions in the pathogenesis of CNS entry. Site-directed mutagenesis of a GAG-binding domain of the surface GBS alpha C protein impeded GBS penetration of the Drosophila BBB in vivo and diminished GBS adherence to and invasion of human BMECs in vitro. Conversely, genetic impairment of GAG expression in flies or mice reduced GBS dissemination into the brain. These complementary approaches identify a role for bacterial-GAG interactions in the pathogenesis of CNS infection. Our results also highlight how the simpler yet genetically conserved Drosophila GAG pathways can provide a model organism to screen candidate molecules that can interrupt pathogen-GAG interactions for future therapeutic applications.
Author Summary
Streptococcus agalactiae (Group B Streptococcus, GBS) is a leading cause of meningitis in human newborn infants. The bacterial and host factors that allow this pathogen to cross the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and cause central nervous system (CNS) infection are not well understood. Here we demonstrate that GBS expresses a specific protein on its surface that can bind to sugar molecules known as glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) on the surface of brain capillary cells, initiating infection of the BBB. Fruit flies or mice genetically engineered to have reduced GAGs showed decreased dissemination of GBS into the brain tissues following experimental infection. Our results identify a role for bacterial-GAG interactions in the pathogenesis of newborn meningitis and highlight how the simpler yet genetically conserved fruit fly GAG biosynthetic pathways make the fruit fly a good model organism to screen candidate molecules that can interrupt pathogen-GAG interactions for future therapeutic applications.
doi:10.1371/journal.ppat.1002082
PMCID: PMC3121876  PMID: 21731486
23.  Pulmonary Immunization Using Antigen 85-B Polymeric Microparticles to Boost Tuberculosis Immunity 
The AAPS Journal  2010;12(3):338-347.
This study aims to evaluate immunization with polymeric microparticles containing recombinant antigen 85B (rAg85B) delivered directly to the lungs to protect against tuberculosis. rAg85B was expressed in Escherichia coli and encapsulated in poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) microparticles (P-rAg85B). These were delivered as dry powders to the lungs of guinea pigs in single or multiple doses of homologous and heterologous antigens. Bacille Calmette–Guérin (BCG) delivered subcutaneously was employed as the positive control and as part of immunization strategies. Immunized animals were challenged with a low-dose aerosol of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) H37Rv to assess the extent of protection measured as reduction in bacterial burden (CFU) in the lungs and spleens of guinea pigs. Histopathological examination and morphometric analysis of these tissues were also performed. The heterologous strategy of BCG prime–P-rAg85B aerosol boosts appeared to enhance protection from bacterial infection, as indicated by a reduction in CFU in both the lungs and spleens compared with untreated controls. Although the CFU data were not statistically different from the BCG and BCG–BCG groups, the histopathological and morphometric analyses indicated the positive effect of BCG–P-rAg85B in terms of differences in area of tissue affected and number and size of granulomas observed in tissues. P-rAg85B microparticles appeared to be effective in boosting a primary BCG immunization against MTB infection, as indicated by histopathology and morphometric analysis. These encouraging observations are relevant to boosting adults previously immunized with BCG or exposed to MTB, commonly the case in the developing world, and should be followed by further assessment of an appropriate immunization protocol for maximum protection.
doi:10.1208/s12248-010-9193-1
PMCID: PMC2895436  PMID: 20422340
antigen 85B; BCG; boost immunization; microparticles; pulmonary delivery
24.  Engineering Sulfotransferases to Modify Heparan Sulfate* 
Nature chemical biology  2008;4(3):200-202.
The biosynthesis of heparan sulfate (HS), an essential glycan in many organisms, involves an array of specialized sulfotransferases. Here, we present a study aimed at engineering the substrate specificity of different HS 3-O-sulfotransferase isoforms. Based on the crystal structures, we identified a pair of amino acid residues responsible for selecting the substrates. Mutations at these residues altered the substrate specificities. Our results demonstrated the feasibility of tailoring the specificity of sulfotransferases to modify HS with desired functions.
doi:10.1038/nchembio.66
PMCID: PMC2676843  PMID: 18223645
25.  Role for 3-O-Sulfated Heparan Sulfate as the Receptor for Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1 Entry into Primary Human Corneal Fibroblasts 
Journal of Virology  2006;80(18):8970-8980.
Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) infection of the corneal stroma remains a major cause of blindness. Primary cultures of corneal fibroblasts (CF) were tested and found susceptible to HSV-1 entry, which was confirmed by deconvolution imaging of infected cells. Plaque assay and real-time PCR demonstrated viral replication and hence a productive infection of CF by HSV-1. A role for glycoprotein D (gD) receptors in cultured CF was determined by gD interference assay. Reverse transcription-PCR analysis indicated expression of herpesvirus entry mediator and 3-O-sulfated (3-OS) heparan sulfate (HS)-generating enzyme 3-O sulfotransferase 3 (3-OST-3) but not nectin-1 or nectin-2. Subsequently, HS isolated from these cells was found to contain two distinct disaccharides (IdoUA2S-AnMan3S and IdoUA2S-AnMan3S6S) that are representative of 3-OST-3 activity. The following lines of evidence supported the important role of 3-OS HS as the mediator of HSV-1 entry into CF. (i) Blockage of entry was observed in CF treated with heparinases. The same enzymes had significantly less effect on HeLa cells that use nectin-1 as the entry receptor. (ii) Enzymatic removal of cell surface HS also removed the major gD-binding receptor, as evident from the reduced binding of gD to cells. (iii) Spinoculation assay demonstrated that entry blockage by heparinase treatment included the membrane fusion step. (iv) HSV-1 glycoprotein-induced cell-to-cell fusion was inhibited by either prior treatment of cells with heparinases or by HS preparations enriched in 3-OS HS. Taken together, the data in this report provide novel information on the role of 3-OS HS in mediating infection of CF, a natural target cell type.
doi:10.1128/JVI.00296-06
PMCID: PMC1563926  PMID: 16940509

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