Ferroelectricity is essential to many forms of current technology, ranging from sensors and
actuators to optical or memory devices. In this circumstance, organic ferroelectrics are of
particular importance because of their potential application in tomorrow's organic devices,
and several pure organic ferroelectrics have been recently developed. However, some
problems, such as current leakage and/or low working frequencies, make their application
prospects especially for ferroelectric memory (FeRAM) not clear. Here, we describe the
molecule-displacive ferroelectricity of supramolecular adducts of tartaric acid and
1,4-diazabicyclo[2.2.2]octane N,N′-dioxide. The adducts show large spontaneous
polarization, high rectangularity of the ferroelectric hysteresis loops even at high
operation frequency (10 kHz), and high performance in polarization switching up to 1 ×
106 times without showing fatigue. It opens great perspectives in terms of
applications, especially in organic FeRAM.
Minimization as an adaptive allocation technique has been recommended in the literature for use in randomized clinical trials. However, it remains uncommonly used due in part to a lack of easily accessible implementation tools.
To provide clinical trialists with a robust, flexible, and readily accessible tool for implementing covariate-adaptive biased-coin randomization.
We developed a Web-based random allocation system, MinimRan, that applies Pocock–Simon (for trials with 2 or more arms) and 2-way (currently limited to 2-arm trials) minimization methods for trials using only categorical prognostic factors or the symmetric Kullback–Leibler divergence minimization method for trials (currently limited to 2-arm trials) using continuous prognostic factors with or without categorical factors, in covariate-adaptive biased-coin randomization.
In this paper, we describe the system’s essential statistical and computer programming features and provide as an example the randomization results generated by it in a recently completed trial. The system can be used in single- and double-blind trials as well as single-center and multicenter trials.
We expect the system to facilitate the translation of the 3 validated random allocation methods into broad, efficient clinical research practice.
randomized controlled trials; randomization; minimization; adaptive randomization; Kullback–Leibler divergence; Web-based
To determine prevalence of genital human papillomavirus (HPV) infection among men in rural China, we analyzed genital swab specimens. Among 2,236 male residents of rural Henan Province, HPV infection prevalence was 17.5%. The most common oncogenic and nononcogenic types were HPV-16 and HPV-3, respectively. Infection was associated with younger age and multiple sex partners.
HPV; men; China; viruses; genital infection; human papillomavirus
Hop (Humulus lupulus L.) is cultivated for its cones, the secondary metabolites of which contribute bitterness, flavour and aroma to beer. Molecular breeding methods, such as marker assisted selection (MAS), have great potential for improving the efficiency of hop breeding. The success of MAS is reliant on the identification of reliable marker-trait associations. This study used quantitative trait loci (QTL) analysis to identify marker-trait associations for hop, focusing on traits related to expediting plant sex identification, increasing yield capacity and improving bittering, flavour and aroma chemistry.
QTL analysis was performed on two new linkage maps incorporating transferable Diversity Arrays Technology (DArT) markers. Sixty-three QTL were identified, influencing 36 of the 50 traits examined. A putative sex-linked marker was validated in a different pedigree, confirming the potential of this marker as a screening tool in hop breeding programs. An ontogenetically stable QTL was identified for the yield trait dry cone weight; and a QTL was identified for essential oil content, which verified the genetic basis for variation in secondary metabolite accumulation in hop cones. A total of 60 QTL were identified for 33 secondary metabolite traits. Of these, 51 were pleiotropic/linked, affecting a substantial number of secondary metabolites; nine were specific to individual secondary metabolites.
Pleiotropy and linkage, found for the first time to influence multiple hop secondary metabolites, have important implications for molecular selection methods. The selection of particular secondary metabolite profiles using pleiotropic/linked QTL will be challenging because of the difficulty of selecting for specific traits without adversely changing others. QTL specific to individual secondary metabolites, however, offer unequalled value to selection programs. In addition to their potential for selection, the QTL identified in this study advance our understanding of the genetic control of traits of current economic and breeding significance in hop and demonstrate the complex genetic architecture underlying variation in these traits. The linkage information obtained in this study, based on transferable markers, can be used to facilitate the validation of QTL, crucial to the success of MAS.
Linkage map; Transferable marker; Diversity arrays technology DArT; Pleiotropy; Sex-linked marker; Dry cone weight; Plant secondary metabolite; Hop acid; Essential oil
To elucidate the role of Fuzheng Huayu Capsule, a herbal formula, in the prevention of esophageal variceal bleeding in cirrhotic patients, a multicenter randomized and placebo-controlled trial was carried out. One hundred forty-six cirrhotic patients with esophageal varices were enrolled to compare the probability of upper gastrointestinal bleeding and survival between Fuzheng Huayu Capsule group and controlled group for the duration of 2 years. The results demonstrated that the FZHYC could effectively reduce the risk of variceal bleeding and improve survival rates for cirrhotic patients with varices, especially the combination of the capsule and Propranolol, which presented a better effect; FZHYC could reduce the varices size in patients with small ones. Its effect may be related to the amelioration of hepatic fibrosis.
Nine novel human papillomavirus (HPV) types were isolated from healthy skin of individuals in rural Anyang, China. All of these isolates belong to the genus Gammapapillomavirus. These data will provide us with useful information for a better understanding of PV evolution and the relationship of PV with the host.
Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-associated nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is a squamous cell cancer endemic in Southern China and Southeast Asia. It has been shown that inflammatory and immune responses during EBV infection contribute to the development of NPC. The complement receptor 2 (CR2) gene plays central roles during inflammatory and immune responses and, therefore, is a good candidate susceptibility gene for NPC. We performed PCR-based sequencing to identify multiple single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within the exon regions of the CR2 gene in a Cantonese population. Two SNPs were screened in 528 NPC patients and 408 normal individuals to perform a case-control study matched according to age, gender and residence. Furthermore, we cloned the entire 5′-UTR and entire CR2 promoter into a luciferase report system and compared the luciferase activities between the different allelic constructs. A SNP in the 5′-UTR of CR2 (24 T/C, rs3813946) showed a significant association (P<0.01) with NPC in the Cantonese population studied. The subjects were categorized into 2 age groups: group 1, age ≤45 years and group 2, age >45 years. In group 1, the allelic frequencies of 24 T/C in the patients were significantly different from those of the controls (P=0.0034). The odds ratio (OR=1.81) also indicated a higher risk of NPC in individuals who carried the minor allele C. All constructs exerted allelic differences on luciferase activities, but only the susceptible allele +24C construct showed increased activity. Our findings implicate CR2 as a susceptibility gene for NPC and suggest that enhanced CR2 expression may be involved in the oncogenesis and development of NPC.
nasopharyngeal carcinoma; complement receptor 2; single-nucleotide polymorphism; susceptibility; case-control study
To evaluate the effects of intensive control of blood glucose and blood pressure on microvascular complications in patients with type II diabetes by comparing the therapeutic effects of intensive and standard treatment in patients with type II diabetes.
A total of 107 patients with type II diabetes were randomly assigned into intensive and standard treatment groups. Patients in the intensive treatment group received preterax (perindopril/ indapamide) to control blood pressure, and gliclazide (diamicron) MR to control blood glucose. Patients in the standard treatment group received routine medications or placebo. Urinary microalbumin (UMA), urinary creatinine (UCR), the UMA/UCR ratio, and visual acuity were monitored according to the study design of the ADVANCE trial. Direct ophthalmoscopy and seven-field stereoscopic retinal photography were used to examine the fundi at baseline, and repeated after 5 years of treatment.
The characteristics of patients in both groups were well balanced at baseline. After 5 years of treatment, visual acuity was found to be decreased in the standard group (P=0.04), but remained stable in the intensive group. The severity of diabetic retinopathy had not progressed in patients in the intensive group, but had deteriorated in the standard group (P=0.0006). The UMA/UCR ratio was not obviously changed in patients in the intensive group, whereas it was significantly increased in the standard group (P=0.00).
Intensive control of blood glucose and blood pressure can decrease the incidence or slow the progression of microvascular complications in patients with type II diabetes, and maintain stable vision.
diabetes mellitus; intensive therapy; microvascular complications; diabetic retinopathy
Heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein C1/C2 (hnRNP C) is a core component of 40S ribonucleoprotein particles that bind pre-mRNAs and influence their processing, stability and export. Breast cancer tumor suppressors BRCA1, BRCA2 and PALB2 form a complex and play key roles in homologous recombination (HR), DNA double strand break (DSB) repair and cell cycle regulation following DNA damage.
PALB2 nucleoprotein complexes were isolated using tandem affinity purification from nuclease-solubilized nuclear fraction. Immunofluorescence was used for localization studies of proteins. siRNA-mediated gene silencing and flow cytometry were used for studying DNA repair efficiency and cell cycle distribution/checkpoints. The effect of hnRNP C on mRNA abundance was assayed using quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR.
Results and Significance
We identified hnRNP C as a component of a nucleoprotein complex containing breast cancer suppressor proteins PALB2, BRCA2 and BRCA1. Notably, other components of the 40S ribonucleoprotein particle were not present in the complex. hnRNP C was found to undergo significant changes of sub-nuclear localization after ionizing radiation (IR) and to partially localize to DNA damage sites. Depletion of hnRNP C substantially altered the normal balance of repair mechanisms following DSB induction, reducing HR usage in particular, and impaired S phase progression after IR. Moreover, loss of hnRNP C strongly reduced the abundance of key HR proteins BRCA1, BRCA2, RAD51 and BRIP1, which can be attributed, at least in part, to the downregulation of their mRNAs due to aberrant splicing. Our results establish hnRNP C as a key regulator of BRCA gene expression and HR-based DNA repair. They also suggest the existence of an RNA regulatory program at sites of DNA damage, which involves a unique function of hnRNP C that is independent of the 40S ribonucleoprotein particles and most other hnRNP proteins.
To investigate the effects of ozone on winter wheat and flixweed under competition, two species were exposed to ambient, elevated and high [O3] for 30 days, planted singly or in mixculture. Eco-physiological responses were examined at different [O3] and fumigating time. Ozone reduced the contents of chlorophyll, increased the accumulation of H2O2 and malondialdehyde in both wheat and flixweed. The effects of competition on chlorophyll content of wheat emerged at elevated and high [O3], while that of flixweed emerged only at high [O3]. The increase of H2O2 and malondialdehyde of flixweed was less than that of wheat under the same condition. Antioxidant enzyme activities of wheat and flixweed were seriously depressed by perennial and serious treatment using O3. However, short-term and moderate fumigation increased the activities of SOD and POD of wheat, and CAT of flixweed. The expression levels of antioxidant enzymes related genes provided explanation for these results. Furthermore, the increase of CAT expression of flixweed was much higher than that of SOD and POD expression of wheat. Ozone and competition resulted in significant reductions in biomass and grain yield in both winter wheat and flixweed. However, the negative effects on flixweed were less than wheat. Our results demonstrated that winter wheat is more sensitive to O3 and competition than flixweed, providing valuable data for further investigation on responses of winter wheat to ozone pollution, in particular combined with species competition.
EGFR genotyping is now standard in the management of advanced lung adenocarcinoma, as this biomarker predicts marked benefit from treatment with EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs). EGFR exon 19 insertions are a poorly described family of EGFR mutations, and their association with EGFR TKI-sensitivity in lung adenocarcinoma is uncertain.
Patients with lung cancers harboring EGFR exon 19 insertions were studied. The predicted effects of the insertions on the structure of the EGFR protein were examined, and EGFR exon 19 insertions were introduced into Ba/F3 cells to assess oncogenicity and in vitro sensitivity to EGFR TKIs. In patients receiving TKI, response magnitude was assessed with serial computed tomography (CT) measurement.
Twelve tumors harboring EGFR exon 19 insertions were identified; patients were predominately female (92%) and never-smokers (75%). The 11 specimens available for full sequencing all demonstrated an 18 bp insertion that resulted in the substitution of a Pro for Leu at residue 747. The mutant EGFR transformed the Ba/F3 cells, which were then sensitive to EGFR TKI. Six patients with measurable disease received TKI and 5 had a response on serial CT.
EGFR exon 19 insertions are a newly appreciated family of EGFR TKI-sensitizing mutations, and patients with tumors harboring these mutations should be treated with EGFR-TKI. While these mutations may be missed through the use of some mutation-specific assays, the addition of PCR product size analysis to multi-gene assays allows sensitive detection of both exon 19 insertion and deletion mutations.
Subcapsular hepatic haematoma is a rare complication of endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancrea-tography (ERCP), and there are few reports about this unusual complication worldwide. The primary symptom of most cases reported in the literature is abdominal pain. We report an unusual case with the primary symptom of fever. A 56-year-old man who had a six-month history of recurrent episodes of upper abdominal pain was diagnosed with a common bile duct stone by magnetic resonance cholangiopancrea-tography. Endoscopic biliary sphincterotomy was performed, and stones from the common bile duct were successfully extracted with a basket. The patient had a persistent fever after ERCP, and treatment with intravenous antibiotics was unsuccessful. Computed tomography showed a 13 cm × 6 cm subcapsular hepatic haematoma filled with air and liquid on the surface of the right hepatic lobe. The patient was successfully treated with peritoneal drainage under B-ultra guidance. Subcapsular liver haematoma should be considered when hard-to- explain symptoms persist in the early period after ERCP. Percutaneous drainage is an effective treatment.
Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancrea-tography; Hepatic; Hematoma; Complication; Treatment
The analysis of protein-protein-interactions is a key focus of proteomics efforts. The yeast two-hybrid system has been the most commonly used method in genome-wide searches for protein interaction partners. However, the throughput of the current yeast two-hybrid array approach is hampered by the involvement of the time-consuming LacZ assay and/or the incompatibility of liquid handling automation due to the requirement for selection of colonies/diploids on agar plates. To facilitate large-scale yeast two-hybrid assays, we report a novel array approach by coupling a GFP reporter based yeast two-hybrid system with high throughput flow cytometry that enables the processing of a 96 well plate in as little as 3 minutes. In this approach, the yEGFP reporter has been established in both AH109 (MATa) and Y187 (MATα) reporter cells. It not only allows the generation of two copies of GFP reporter genes in diploid cells, but also allows the convenient determination of self-activators generated from both bait and prey constructs by flow cytometry. We demonstrate a Y2H array assay procedure that is carried out completely in liquid media in 96-well plates by mating bait and prey cells in liquid YPD media, selecting the diploids containing positive interaction pairs in selective media and analyzing the GFP reporter directly by flow cytometry. We have evaluated this flow cytometry based array procedure by showing that the interaction of the positive control pair P53/T is able to be reproducibly detected at 72 hrs post-mating compared to the negative control pairs. We conclude that our flow cytometry based yeast two-hybrid approach is robust, convenient, quantitative, and is amenable to large-scale analysis using liquid-handling automation.
HT flow cytometry; Protein-protein interaction; Yeast two-hybrid system; Array approach
Pathologic studies play an important role in evaluating patients with Alport syndrome besides genotyping. Difficulties still exist in diagnosing Alport syndrome (AS), and misdiagnosis is a not-so-rare event, even in adult patient evaluated with renal biopsy.
We used nested case–control study to investigate 52 patients previously misdiagnosed and 52 patients initially diagnosed in the China Alport Syndrome Treatments and Outcomes Registry e-system.
We found mesangial proliferative glomerulonephritis (MsPGN, 26.9%) and focal and segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS, 19.2%) were the most common misdiagnosis. FSGS was the most frequent misdiagnosis in female X-linked AS (fXLAS) patients (34.8%), and MsPGN in male X-linked AS (mXLAS) patients (41.2%). Previous misdiagnosed mXLAS patients (13/17, 76.5%) and autosomal recessive AS (ARAS) patients (8/12, 66.7%) were corrected after a second renal biopsy. While misdiagnosed fXLAS patients (18/23, 78.3%) were corrected after a family member diagnosed (34.8%) or after rechecking electronic microscopy and/or collagen-IV alpha-chains immunofluresence study (COL-IF) (43.5%) during follow-up. With COL-IF as an additional criterion for AS diagnosis, we found that patients with less than 3 criteria reached have increased risk of misdiagnosis (3.29-fold for all misdiagnosed AS patients and 3.90-fold for fXLAS patients).
We emphasize timely and careful study of electronic microscopy and COL-IF in pathologic evaluation of AS patients. With renal and/or skin COL-IF as additional criterion, 3 diagnosis criteria reached are the cutoff for diagnosing AS pathologically.
Alport syndrome; Diagnosis; Immunohistology; Renal biopsy
Malaria causes over one million deaths annually, posing an enormous health and economic burden in endemic regions. The completion of genome sequencing of the causative agents, a group of parasites in the genus Plasmodium, revealed potential drug and vaccine candidates. However, genomics-driven target discovery has been significantly hampered by our limited knowledge of the cellular networks associated with parasite development and pathogenesis. In this paper, we propose an approach based on aligning neighborhood PPI subnetworks across species to identify network components in the malaria parasite P. falciparum.
Instead of only relying on sequence similarities to detect functional orthologs, our approach measures the conservation between the neighborhood subnetworks in protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks in two species, P. falciparum and E. coli. 1,082 P. falciparum proteins were predicted as functional orthologs of known transcriptional regulators in the E. coli network, including general transcriptional regulators, parasite-specific transcriptional regulators in the ApiAP2 protein family, and other potential regulatory proteins. They are implicated in a variety of cellular processes involving chromatin remodeling, genome integrity, secretion, invasion, protein processing, and metabolism.
In this proof-of-concept study, we demonstrate that a subnetwork alignment approach can reveal previously uncharacterized members of the subnetworks, which opens new opportunities to identify potential therapeutic targets and provide new insights into parasite biology, pathogenesis and virulence. This approach can be extended to other systems, especially those with poor genome annotation and a paucity of knowledge about cellular networks.
Ascites syndrome is still a problem for chicken industry in various parts of the world. Despite the intensive investigations of this syndrome for many years, its pathogenesis remains unclear. The objective of this study was to analyze the difference in hepatic proteomics between ascites and healthy broilers by two-dimensional electrophoresis (2-DE) and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS). Changes of biochemical parameters of liver and blood were also determined. The results indicated that red blood cell counts (RBC), hematocrit (HCT) and haemoglobin (HGB) of ascites broilers were significantly greater than healthy broilers. Hepatic malondialdehyde (MDA) level of ascites broilers was significantly increased, and the activity of total superoxide dismutase (T-SOD) was significantly decreased. Hepatic lactic acid (LD) level of ascitic broilers were significantly lower than healthy ones. Serum glucose and cholesterol level of ascites broilers were significantly increased, and serum globulin level was significantly decreased in ascites broilers. There was no significant difference in triglyceride (TG) and blood urea nitrogen (BUN) level. The activity of liver hexokinase (HK) and succinodehydrogenase (SDH) in ascites broilers was significantly decreased, and there was no significant difference in the activity of liver pyruvate kinase (PK) and Na+-K+-ATPase. The hepatic proteomics analysis showed that 18 proteins expression difference were identified between ascites and healthy broilers. These proteins were mainly involved in: 1) cytoskeleton; 2) glucose, lipids and amino acid metabolism; 3) cell secretion; 4) cell apoptosis; 5) signal transduction; 6) immune and inflammatory response; and 7) cellular redox homeostasis. Mitochondrial isoform phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (M-PEPCK) mainly participates in gluconeogenesis of chicken liver. In conclusion, liver oxidative damage was significantly aggravated, but antioxidant capacity was decreased in cold-induced ascites broilers. Serum glucose level was significantly increased, with liver M-PEPCK expression higher in ascites broilers, which implied that some potential regulatory reagents may reduce ascites susceptibility and mortality under cold temperature by increasing liver gluconeogenesis level.
Ascites; Broilers; Biochemical parameters; Proteomics analysis
The Oxford classification of IgA nephropathy (IgAN) provides a useful tool for prediction of renal prognosis. However, the application of this classification in children with IgAN needs validation in different patient populations.
A total of 218 children with IgAN from 7 renal centers in China were enrolled. The inclusion criteria was similar to the original Oxford study.
There were 98 patients (45%) with mesangial proliferation (M1), 51 patients (23%) with endocapillary proliferation (E1), 136 patients (62%) with segmental sclerosis/adhesion lesion (S1), 13 patients (6%) with moderate tubulointerstitial fibrosis (T1 26-50% of cortex scarred), and only 2 patients (1%) with severe tubulointerstitial fibrosis (T2, >50% of cortex scarred). During a median follow-up duration of 56 months, 24 children (12.4%) developed ESRD or 50% decline in renal function. In univariate COX analysis, we found that tubular atrophy/interstitial fibrosis (HR 4.3, 95%CI 1.8-10.5, P < 0.001) and segmental glomerulosclerosis (HR 9.2 1.2-68.6, P = 0.03) were significant predictors of renal outcome. However, mesangial hypercellularity, endocapillary proliferation, crescents, and necrosis were not associated with renal prognosis. In the multivariate COX regression model, none of these pathologic lesions were shown to be independent risk factors of unfavorable renal outcome except for tubular atrophy/interstitial fibrosis (HR 2.9, 95%CI 1.0-7.9 P = 0.04).
We confirmed tubular atrophy/interstitial fibrosis was the only feature independently associated with renal outcomes in Chinese children with IgAN.
Glomerulonephritis; IgA nephropathy; Oxford classification; Children; Pediatrics
AIM: To investigate whether activated carbon nanoparticles suspension (ACNS) or methylene blue (MB) can increase the detected number of lymph nodes in colorectal cancer.
METHODS: Sixty-seven of 72 colorectal cancer patients treated at our hospital fulfilled the inclusion criteria of the study which was conducted from December 2010 to February 2012. Seven patients refused to participate. Eventually, 60 patients were included, and randomly assigned to three groups (20 in each group): ACNS group (group A), MB group (group B) and non-stained conventional surgical group (group C). In group A, patients received subserosal injection of 1 mL ACNS in a 4-quadrant region around the mass. In group B, the main artery of specimen was identified and isolated after the specimen was removed, and 2 mL MB was slowly injected into the isolated, stretched and fixed vessel. In group C, no ACNS and MB were injected. All the mesentery lymph nodes were isolated and removed systematically by visually inspecting and palpating the adipose tissue.
RESULTS: No difference was observed among the three groups in age, gender, tumor location, tumor diameter, T-stage, degree of differentiation, postoperative complications and peritoneal drainage retention time. The total number of detected lymph nodes was 535, 476 and 223 in the three groups, respectively. The mean number of detected lymph nodes per patient was significantly higher in group A than in group C (26.8 ± 8.4 vs 12.2 ± 3.2, P < 0.001). Similarly, there were significantly more lymph nodes detected in group B than in group C (23.8 ± 6.9 vs 12.2 ± 3.2, P < 0.001). However, there was no significant difference between group A and group B. There were 50, 46 and 32 metastatic lymph nodes dissected in 13 patients of group A, 10 patients of group B and 11 patients of group C, without significant differences among the three groups. Eleven of the 60 patients had insufficient number of detected lymph nodes (< 12). Only one patient with T4a rectal cancer had 10 lymph nodes detected in group B, the other 10 patients were all from group C. Based on the different diameter categories, the number of detected lymph nodes in groups A and B was significantly higher than in group C. However, there was no statistically significant difference between group A and group B. The metastatic lymph nodes were not significant different among the three groups. Similarly, tumor location, T stage and tumor differentiation did not affect the staining results. Body mass index was a minor influencing factor in the two different staining methods. The stained lymph nodes can easily be identified from the mesenteric adipose tissues, and the staining time for lymph nodes was not significantly different compared with unstained group. None of the patients in groups A and B had drug-related complications.
CONCLUSION: Both activated carbon nanoparticles suspension in vivo and methylene blue in vitro can be used as tracers to increase the detected number of lymph nodes in colorectal cancer.
Nanotechnology; Activated carbon nanoparticles suspension; Methylene blue; Lymph nodes; Co-lorectal cancer
It is of great interest to identify new neurons in the adult human brain, but the persistence of neurogenesis in the subventricular zone (SVZ) and the existence of the rostral migratory stream (RMS)-like pathway in the adult human forebrain remain highly controversial. In the present study, we have described the general configuration of the RMS in adult monkey, fetal human and adult human brains. We provide evidence that neuroblasts exist continuously in the anterior ventral SVZ and RMS of the adult human brain. The neuroblasts appear singly or in pairs without forming chains; they exhibit migratory morphologies and co-express the immature neuronal markers doublecortin, polysialylated neural cell adhesion molecule and βIII-tubulin. Few of these neuroblasts appear to be actively proliferating in the anterior ventral SVZ but none in the RMS, indicating that neuroblasts distributed along the RMS are most likely derived from the ventral SVZ. Interestingly, no neuroblasts are found in the adult human olfactory bulb. Taken together, our data suggest that the SVZ maintains the ability to produce neuroblasts in the adult human brain.
human; rhesus monkey; stem cells; neurogenesis; neuroblasts; subventricular zone; rostral migratory stream
The hypoxia-inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α) plays an important role in regulating angiogenesis, which is essential for tumor growth and metastasis. Genetic variations of HIF1A (coding HIF-1α) have been shown to influence an individual's susceptibility to many human tumors; however, evidence on associations between HIF1A single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and prostate cancer (PCa) risk is conflicting. We genotyped three potentially functional polymorphisms in HIF1A (rs11549465, rs11549467 and rs2057482) using the TaqMan method and assessed their associations with PCa risk in a case–control study of 662 PCa patients and 716 controls in a Chinese Han population. Compared with rs11549467 GG genotype, the variant genotypes GA+AA had a significantly increased PCa risk (adjusted odds ratio (OR)=1.70; 95% confidence interval (CI)=1.06–2.72), particularly among older patients (OR=2.01; 95%CI=1.05–3.86), smokers (OR=2.06; 95%CI=1.07–3.99), never drinkers (OR=2.16; 95%CI=1.20–3.86) and patients without a family history of cancer (OR=1.71; 95%CI=1.02–2.89). Furthermore, patients with rs11549467 variant genotypes were associated with a higher Gleason score (OR=2.14; 95%CI=1.22–3.75). No altered PCa risk was associated with the rs11549465 and rs2057482 polymorphism. However, the combined variant genotypes of rs2057482 and rs11549467 were associated with increased PCa risk (OR=2.10; 95%CI=1.23–3.57 among subjects carrying three or more risk alleles). These results suggest that HIF1A polymorphisms may impact PCa susceptibility and progression in the Chinese Han population.
genetic association; HIF-1α; HIF1A; polymorphism; prostate cancer
The extracellular matrix (ECM) provides a supportive microenvironment for cells, which is suitable as a tissue engineering scaffold. Mechanical stimulus plays a significant role in the fate of osteoblast, suggesting that it regulates ECM formation. Therefore, we investigated the influence of mechanical stimulus on ECM formation and bioactivity.
Mouse osteoblastic MC3T3-E1 cells were cultured in cell culture dishes and stimulated with mechanical tensile strain. After removing the cells, the ECMs coated on dishes were prepared. The ECM protein and calcium were assayed and MC3T3-E1 cells were re-seeded on the ECM-coated dishes to assess osteoinductive potential of the ECM.
The cyclic tensile strain increased collagen, bone morphogenetic protein 2 (BMP-2), BMP-4, and calcium levels in the ECM. Compared with the ECM produced by unstrained osteoblasts, those of mechanically stimulated osteoblasts promoted alkaline phosphatase activity, elevated BMP-2 and osteopontin levels and mRNA levels of runt-related transcriptional factor 2 (Runx2) and osteocalcin (OCN), and increased secreted calcium of the re-seeded MC3T3-E1 cells.
Mechanical strain promoted ECM production of osteoblasts in vitro, increased BMP-2/4 levels, and improved osteoinductive potential of the ECM. This study provided a novel method to enhance bioactivity of bone ECM in vitro via mechanical strain to osteoblasts.
Tensile strain; Osteoblast; Extracellular matrix; Osteoinduction
PALB2/FANCN is mutated in breast and pancreatic cancers and Fanconi anemia (FA). It controls the intranuclear localization, stability, and DNA repair function of BRCA2 and links BRCA1 and BRCA2 in DNA homologous recombination repair and breast cancer suppression. Here, we show that PALB2 directly interacts with KEAP1, an oxidative stress sensor that binds and represses the master antioxidant transcription factor NRF2. PALB2 shares with NRF2 a highly conserved ETGE-type KEAP1 binding motif and can effectively compete with NRF2 for KEAP1 binding. PALB2 promotes NRF2 accumulation and function in the nucleus and lowers the cellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) level. In addition, PALB2 also regulates the rate of NRF2 export from the nucleus following induction. Our findings identify PALB2 as a regulator of cellular redox homeostasis and provide a new link between oxidative stress and the development of cancer and FA.
Cardiac shock wave therapy (CSWT) improves cardiac function in patients with severe coronary artery disease (CAD). We aimed to evaluate the clinical outcomes of a new CSWT treatment regimen.
The 55 patients with severe CAD were randomly divided into 3 treatment groups. The control group (n = 14) received only medical therapy. In group A ( n = 20), CSWT was performed 3 times within 3 months. In group B ( n = 21), patients underwent 3 CSWT sessions/week, and 9 treatment sessions were completed within 1 month. Primary outcome measurement was 6-minute walk test (6MWT). Other measurements were also evaluated.
The 6MWT, CCS grading of angina, dosage of nitroglycerin, NYHA classification, and SAQ scores were improved in group A and B compared to control group.
A CSWT protocol with 1 month treatment duration showed similar therapeutic efficacy compared to a protocol of 3 months duration.
Clinical trial registry
We have registered on ClinicalTrials.gov, the protocol ID is CSWT IN CHINA.
Coronary artery disease; Angina pectoris; Myocardial ischemia; Cardiac shock wave therapy
Effective immobilization and transportation are vital to the life-saving acute medical care needed when treating critically injured people. However, the most common types of stretchers used today are wrought with problems that can lead to further medical complications, difficulty in employment and rescue, and ineffective transitions to hospital treatment. Here we report a novel first aid stretcher called the “emergency carpet”, which solves these problems with a unique design for spine injured patients. Polyurethane composite material, obtained by a novel process of manually mixing isocyanate and additives, can be poured into a specially designed fabric bag and allowed to harden to form a rigid human-shaped stretcher. The effectiveness of the emergency carpet was examined in the pre-hospital management of victims with spinal fractures. Additionally, it was tested on flat ground and complex terrain as well as in the sea and air. We demonstrated that the emergency carpet can be assembled and solidified on the scene in 5 minutes, providing effective immobilization to the entire injured body. With the protection of the emergency carpet, none of the 20 patients, who were finally confirmed to have spinal column fracture or dislocation, had any neurological deterioration during transportation. Furthermore, the carpet can be handled and transported by multiple means under differing conditions, without compromising immobilization. Finally, the emergency carpet allows the critically injured patient to receive multiple examinations such as X-ray, CT, and MRI without being removed from the carpet. Our results demonstrate that the emergency carpet has ideal capabilities for immobilization, extrication, and transportation of the spine injured patients. Compared with other stretchers, it allows for better mobility, effective immobilization, remarkable conformity to the body, and various means for transportation. The emergency carpet is promising for its intrinsic advantages in the pre-hospital management of accident victims.
Spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma (SSEH) is an uncommon clinical entity. It produces a severe neurological deficit and prompt decompression is usually the first choice of treatment. Brown-Séquard syndrome is commonly seen in the setting of spinal trauma or an extramedullary spinal neoplasm, but rarely caused by SSEH.
Case report and literature review.
A previously healthy man presented with Brown-Séquard syndrome below T5–T6 cord segment secondary to spontaneous epidural hematoma. He opted for conservative treatment, which was followed by rapid resolution.
Although Brown-Séquard syndrome as a presenting feature of SSEH is rare, it does exist in exceptional case, which should be taken into consideration for differential diagnosis. Prompt surgical decompression is an absolute surgical indication widely accepted for patient with progressive neurological deficit. However, SSEH presenting with incomplete neurological insult such as Brown-Séquard syndrome might have a benign course. Successful non-operative management of this problem does not make it a standard of care, and surgical decompression remains the standard treatment for SSEH.
Spinal epidural hematoma; Brown-Séquard syndrome; Thoracic vertebra; Spinal cord; Methylprednisolone; Paraparesis