Capsule is an important virulence factor in bacteria. A total of 78 capsular types have been identified in Klebsiella pneumoniae. However, there are limitations in current typing methods. We report here the development of a new genotyping method based on amplification of the variable regions of the wzc gene. Fragments corresponding to the variable region of wzc were amplified and sequenced from 76 documented capsular types of reference or clinical strains. The remaining two capsular types (reference strains K15 and K50) lacked amplifiable wzc genes and were proven to be acapsular. Strains with the same capsular type exhibited ≧94% DNA sequence identity across the variable region (CD1-VR2-CD2) of wzc. Strains with distinct K types exhibited <80% DNA sequence identity across this region, with the exception of three pairs of strains: K22/K37, K9/K45, and K52/K79. Strains K22 and K37 shared identical capsular polysaccharide synthesis (cps) genes except for one gene with a difference at a single base which resulted in frameshift mutation. The wzc sequences of K9 and K45 exhibited high DNA sequence similarity but possessed different genes in their cps clusters. K52 and K79 exhibited 89% wzc DNA sequence identity but were readily distinguished from each other at the DNA level; in contrast, strains with the same capsular type as K52 exhibited 100% wzc sequence identity. A total of 29 strains from patients with bacteremia were typed by the wzc system. wzc DNA sequences confirmed the documented capsular type for twenty-eight of these clinical isolates; the remaining strain likely represents a new capsular type. Thus, the wzc genotyping system is a simple and useful method for capsular typing of K. pneumoniae.
Essential proteins are indispensable for cell survive. Identifying essential proteins is very important for improving our understanding the way of a cell working. There are various types of features related to the essentiality of proteins. Many methods have been proposed to combine some of them to predict essential proteins. However, it is still a big challenge for designing an effective method to predict them by integrating different features, and explaining how these selected features decide the essentiality of protein. Gene expression programming (GEP) is a learning algorithm and what it learns specifically is about relationships between variables in sets of data and then builds models to explain these relationships.
In this work, we propose a GEP-based method to predict essential protein by combing some biological features and topological features. We carry out experiments on S. cerevisiae data. The experimental results show that the our method achieves better prediction performance than those methods using individual features. Moreover, our method outperforms some machine learning methods and performs as well as a method which is obtained by combining the outputs of eight machine learning methods.
The accuracy of predicting essential proteins can been improved by using GEP method to combine some topological features and biological features.
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the most malignant tumors and the biggest obstacle in curing HCC is its high metastasis potential. Alteration of p53 is the most frequent genetic change found in HCC. Although the biological function of p53 in tumor initiation and progression has been well characterized, whether or not p53 is implicated in metastasis of HCC is largely unknown. In this study, we analyzed the potential functions of p53 in epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and metastasis of HCC cells. Both insulin- and TGF-β1-induced changes of critical EMT markers were greatly enhanced by p53 knockdown in HCC cells. The insulin- and TGF-β1-stimulated migration of HCC cells were enhanced by p53 knockdown. Furthermore, in vivo metastasis of HCC cells using different mouse models was robustly enhanced by p53 knockdown. In addition, we found that p53 regulation on EMT and metastasis involves β-catenin signaling. The nuclear accumulation and transcriptional activity of β-catenin was modulated by p53. The enhanced EMT phenotype, cell migration and tumor metastasis of HCC cells by p53 knockdown were abrogated by inhibiting β-catenin signal pathway. In conclusion, this study reveals that p53 plays a pivotal role in EMT and metastasis of HCC cells via its regulation on β-catenin signaling.
A Fe(acac)3-catalyzed decarboxylative coupling of 2-(aryl)vinyl carboxylic acids with cycloalkanes was developed by using DTBP as an oxidant through a radical process. This reaction tolerates a wide range of substrates, and products are obtained in good to excellent yields (71–95%). The reaction also shows excellent stereoselectivity, and only trans-isomers are obtained.
alkenylation; cycloalkanes; decarboxylative; Fe(acac)3; free radical; sp3 C–H bonds
Klebsiella pneumoniae is one of the major pathogens causing hospital-acquired multidrug-resistant infections. The capsular polysaccharide (CPS) is an important virulence factor of K. pneumoniae. With 78 capsular types discovered thus far, an association between capsular type and the pathogenicity of K. pneumoniae has been observed.
To investigate an initially non-typeable K. pneumoniae UTI isolate NTUH-K1790N, the cps gene region was sequenced. By NTUH-K1790N cps-PCR genotyping, serotyping and determination using a newly isolated capsular type-specific bacteriophage, we found that NTUH-K1790N and three other isolates Ca0507, Ca0421 and C1975 possessed a new capsular type, which we named KN2. Analysis of a KN2 CPS− mutant confirmed the role of capsule as the target recognized by the antiserum and the phage. A newly described lytic phage specific for KN2 K. pneumoniae, named 0507-KN2-1, was isolated and characterized using transmission electron microscopy. Whole-genome sequencing of 0507-KN2-1 revealed a 159 991 bp double-stranded DNA genome with a G+C content of 46.7% and at least 154 open reading frames. Based on its morphological and genomic characteristics, 0507-KN2-1 was classified as a member of the Myoviridae phage family. Further analysis of this phage revealed a 3738-bp gene encoding a putative polysaccharide depolymerase. A recombinant form of this protein was produced and assayed to confirm its enzymatic activity and specificity to KN2 capsular polysaccharides. KN2 K. pneumoniae strains exhibited greater sensitivity to this depolymerase than these did to the cognate phage, as determined by spot analysis.
Here we report that a group of clinical strains possess a novel Klebsiella capsular type. We identified a KN2-specific phage and its polysaccharide depolymerase, which could be used for efficient capsular typing. The lytic phage and depolymerase also have potential as alternative therapeutic agents to antibiotics for treating K. pneumoniae infections, especially against antibiotic-resistant strains.
The aim of this study is to understand the influences of the social custom of foot binding on female osteoporosis by means of comparing and analyzing the lumbar vertebrae and hip bone mass differences between the foot-binding aged women and unbound women of the same age at Qujing District of Yunnan Province. Of the examined people, 81.37% suffer from osteoporosis on the basis of lumbar vertebra (L1–L4) and femoral neck BMD, of which 82.14% for the foot-binding group and 80.44% for the unbound group. There is no statistical difference for the osteoporosis morbidity of the two groups. Compare the BMD value for various vertebrae, femoral neck, and rehabilitation of the two groups and find the BMD value for the other parts have no statistical difference except the BMD value of L1 centrum, which shows that foot binding does not significantly influence the overall bone mineral density of foot-binding women.
Metabolic risk factors and abnormalities such as obesity and hypertension are rapidly rising among the Chinese population following China’s tremendous economic growth and widespread westernization of lifestyle in recent decades. Limited information is available about the current burden of metabolic syndrome (MetS) in China.
We analyzed data on metabolic risk factors among 22,457 adults aged ≥ 32 years participating in the “Zhabei Health 2020” survey (2009–2010), a cross-sectional study of a representative sample of community residents in Zhabei District. We defined MetS using Chinese-specific cut-off points for central obesity according to consensus criteria recently endorsed by several international and national organizations in defining MetS in different populations worldwide. We used a multiple logistic regression model to assess the associations of potential risk factors with MetS.
The unadjusted prevalence of the MetS was 35.1% for men and 32.5% for women according to the consensus criteria for Chinese. The prevalence increased progressively from 12.1% among participants aged 32–45 years to 45.4% among those aged ≥ 75 years. Age, smoking, family history of diabetes, and education are significantly associated with risk of MetS.
The MetS is highly prevalent and has reached epidemic proportion in Chinese urban adult community residents.
Metabolic syndrome; Prevalence; Population-based survey; China
Some mammals hibernate in response to harsh environments. Although hibernating mammals may metabolize proteins, the nitrogen metabolic pathways commonly activated during hibernation are not fully characterized. In contrast to the hypothesis of amino acid preservation, we found evidence of amino acid metabolism as three of five key enzymes, including phenylalanine hydroxylase (PAH), homogentisate 1,2-dioxygenase (HGD), fumarylacetoacetase (FAH), involved in phenylalanine and tyrosine catabolism were co-upregulated during hibernation in two distantly related species of bats, Myotis ricketti and Rhinolophus ferrumequinum. In addition, the levels of phenylalanine in the livers of these bats were significantly decreased during hibernation. Because phenylalanine and tyrosine are both glucogenic and ketogenic, these results indicate the role of this catabolic pathway in energy supply. Since any deficiency in the catabolism of these two amino acids can cause accumulations of toxic metabolites, these results also suggest the detoxification role of these enzymes during hibernation. A higher selective constraint on PAH, HPD, and HGD in hibernators than in non-hibernators was observed, and hibernators had more conserved amino acid residues in each of these enzymes than non-hibernators. These conserved amino acid residues are mostly located in positions critical for the structure and activity of the enzymes. Taken together, results of this work provide novel insights in nitrogen metabolism and removal of harmful metabolites during bat hibernation.
Ras plays a pivotal role in many cellular activities, and its subcellular compartmentalization provides spatial and temporal selectivity. Here we report a mode of spatial regulation of Ras signaling in the Golgi apparatus by two highly homologous proteins PAQR10 and PAQR11 of the progestin and AdipoQ receptors family. PAQR10 and PAQR11 are exclusively localized in the Golgi apparatus. Overexpression of PAQR10/PAQR11 stimulates basal and EGF-induced ERK phosphorylation and increases the expression of ERK target genes in a dose-dependent manner. Overexpression of PAQR10/PAQR11 markedly elevates Golgi localization of HRas, NRas and KRas4A, but not KRas4B. PAQR10 and PAQR11 can also interact with HRas, NRas and KRas4A, but not KRas4B. The increased Ras protein at the Golgi apparatus by overexpression of PAQR10/PAQR11 is in an active state. Consistently, knockdown of PAQR10 and PAQR11 reduces EGF-stimulated ERK phosphorylation and Ras activation at the Golgi apparatus. Intriguingly, PAQR10 and PAQR11 are able to interact with RasGRP1, a guanine nucleotide exchange protein of Ras, and increase Golgi localization of RasGRP1. The C1 domain of RasGRP1 is both necessary and sufficient for the interaction of RasGRP1 with PAQR10/PAQR11. The simulation of ERK phosphorylation by overexpressed PAQR10/PAQR11 is abrogated by downregulation of RasGRP1. Furthermore, differentiation of PC12 cells is significantly enhanced by overexpression of PAQR10/PAQR11. Collectively, this study uncovers a new paradigm of spatial regulation of Ras signaling in the Golgi apparatus by PAQR10 and PAQR11.
Ras; Signal transduction; Golgi apparatus; compartmentalization; ERK
Identifying protein complexes from protein-protein interaction network is fundamental for understanding the mechanism of cellular component and protein function. At present, many methods to identify protein complexes are mainly based on the topological characteristics or the functional similarity features, neglecting the fact that proteins must be in their active forms to interact with others and the formation of protein complex is following a just-in-time mechanism.
This paper firstly presents a protein complex formation model based on the just-in-time mechanism. By investigating known protein complexes combined with gene expression data, we find that most protein complexes can be formed in continuous time points, and the average overlapping rate of the known complexes during the formation is large. A method is proposed to refine the protein complexes predicted by clustering algorithms based on the protein complex formation model and the properties of known protein complexes. After refinement, the number of known complexes that are matched by predicted complexes, Sensitivity, Specificity, and f-measure are significantly improved, when compared with those of the original predicted complexes.
The refining method can discard the spurious proteins by protein activity and generate new complexes by just-in-time assemble mechanism, which can enhance the ability to predict complex.
Protein activity; Protein complex formation model; Just-in-time; Refining; Gene expression
Between September 17 and October 3, 2009, hundreds of workers employed in a manufacturing factory in Shenzhen, a city in south China developed a sudden onset of acute gastroenteritis. A retrospective cohort study is designed to identify the risk factors and control this outbreak.
Information on demographic characteristics, working place, the history of contact with a person having diarrhea and/or vomiting, drink water preference and frequency, eating in the company cafeteria or outside the company, hand-washing habits and eating habits is included. Furthermore, in order to find the contamination source, we investigated the environment around the underground reservoir and collected water samples from the junction between municipal supply water system and underground reservoir to test potential bacteria and virus, examine the seepage tracks on the wall of the underground reservoir from the side of septic tank, and check the integrity and attitude of this lid. Relative risk was presented and Chi-square test was performed. All the analyses were performed with OpenEpi software version 2.3.1 online.
The cohort study demonstrated that the workers who had direct drink water were 3.0 fold more likely to suffer from acute gastroenteritis than those who consumed commercial bottled water. The direct drinking water, water of the tank of buildings, and the underground reservoir were positive only for norovirus. Norovirus was also detected from stool and rectal swab samples from patients with acute gastroenteritis. The underground reservoir was found to be the primary contamination source. Further environmental investigation showed that the norovirus contaminated substance entered into the underground reservoir via access holes in lid covering this underground reservoir.
This acute gastroenteritis outbreak was caused by the secondary supply system contaminated by norovirus in this factory. The outbreak of gastroenteritis cases caused by norovirus frequently occurred in China due to a lack of surveillance and supervision, and due to faults in the construction of such water systems. Therefore, more attentions should pay to the secondary supply water system in China.
Norovirus; Acute gastroenteritis; Outbreak; Secondary water supply system
The initiators caspase-9 (CASP9) and caspase-10 (CASP10) are two key controllers of apoptosis and play important roles in carcinogenesis. This study aims to explore the association between CASPs gene polymorphisms and colorectal cancer (CRC) susceptibility in a population-based study. A two-stage designed population-based case-control study was carried out, including a testing set with 300 cases and 296 controls and a validation set with 206 cases and 845 controls. A total of eight tag selected single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in CASP9 and CASP10 were chosen based on HapMap and the National Center of Biotechnology Information (NCBI) datasets and genotyped by restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) assay. Multivariate logistic regression models were applied to evaluate the association of SNPs with CRC risk. In the first stage, from eight tag SNPs, three polymorphisms rs4646077 (odds ratio (OR)AA+AG: 0.654, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.406–1.055; P=0.082), rs4233532 (ORCC: 1.667, 95% CI: 0.967–2.876; ORCT: 1.435, 95% CI: 0.998–2.063; P=0.077), and rs2881930 (ORCC: 0.263, 95% CI: 0.095–0.728, P=0.036) showed possible association with CRC risk. However, none of the three SNPs, rs4646077 (ORAA+AG: 1.233, 95% CI: 0.903–1.683), rs4233532 (ORCC: 0.892, 95% CI: 0.640–1.243; ORCT: 1.134, 95% CI: 0.897–1.433), and rs2881930 (ORCC: 1.096, 95% CI: 0.620–1.938; ORCT: 1.009, 95% CI: 0.801–1.271), remained significant with CRC risk in the validation set, even after stratification for different tumor locations (colon or rectum). In addition, never tea drinking was associated with a significantly increased risk of CRC in testing set together with validation set (OR: 1.755, 95% CI: 1.319–2.334). Our results found that polymorphisms of CASP9 and CASP10 genes may not contribute to CRC risk in Chinese population and thereby the large-scale case-control studies might be in consideration. In addition, tea drinking was a protective factor for CRC.
CASP9; CASP10; Colorectal cancer; Single nucleotide polymorphisms; Susceptibility to cancer; Tea drinking
Dysregulation of the complement system has been linked to pathogenesis of hypertension. However, whether genetic changes of complement factor H (CFH) and its related genes are associated with hypertension is unknown. We genotyped three SNPs in the CFH gene cluster that are closely linked to age-related macular degeneration, namely rs1061170 (Y402H), rs2274700 (A473A) and rs7542235 (CFHR1–3Δ), and tested for their associations with blood pressure and hypertension risk in a population-based cohort including 3,210 unrelated Chinese Hans (50–70 years of age) from Beijing and Shanghai. We found that rs2274700 (A473A) and rs7542235 (CFHR1–3Δ) were both significantly associated with diastolic blood pressure (DBP) (β = 0.632–1.431, P≤0.038) and systolic blood pressure (SBP) (β = 1.567–4.445, P≤0.008), and rs2274700 (A473A) was associated with hypertension risk (OR [95%CI]: 1.175 [1.005–1.373], P = 0.048). Notably, the associations of rs2274700 (A473A) with DBP (P = 2.1×10−3), SBP (P = 8×10−5) and hypertension risk (P = 7.9×10−3) were significant only in the individuals with low CRP levels (<2.0 mg/l), but not in those with CRP levels ≥2.0 mg/l (P≥0.0807) (P for interaction ≤0.0467). However, no significant association between rs1061170 (Y402H) and blood pressure or hypertension risk was observed (P≥0.259). In conclusion, our results suggest that genetic variations in CFH and its related genes may contribute to hypertension risk in Chinese Hans.
Identification of essential proteins plays a significant role in understanding minimal requirements for the cellular survival and development. Many computational methods have been proposed for predicting essential proteins by using the topological features of protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks. However, most of these methods ignored intrinsic biological meaning of proteins. Moreover, PPI data contains many false positives and false negatives. To overcome these limitations, recently many research groups have started to focus on identification of essential proteins by integrating PPI networks with other biological information. However, none of their methods has widely been acknowledged.
By considering the facts that essential proteins are more evolutionarily conserved than nonessential proteins and essential proteins frequently bind each other, we propose an iteration method for predicting essential proteins by integrating the orthology with PPI networks, named by ION. Differently from other methods, ION identifies essential proteins depending on not only the connections between proteins but also their orthologous properties and features of their neighbors. ION is implemented to predict essential proteins in S. cerevisiae. Experimental results show that ION can achieve higher identification accuracy than eight other existing centrality methods in terms of area under the curve (AUC). Moreover, ION identifies a large amount of essential proteins which have been ignored by eight other existing centrality methods because of their low-connectivity. Many proteins ranked in top 100 by ION are both essential and belong to the complexes with certain biological functions. Furthermore, no matter how many reference organisms were selected, ION outperforms all eight other existing centrality methods. While using as many as possible reference organisms can improve the performance of ION. Additionally, ION also shows good prediction performance in E. coli K-12.
The accuracy of predicting essential proteins can be improved by integrating the orthology with PPI networks.
Vertebrate lens development depends on a complex network of signaling molecules to coordinate cell proliferation, migration and differentiation. In this study, we have studied the role of heparan sulfate in lens specific signaling by generating a conditional ablation of heparan sulfate modification genes, Ndst1 and Ndst2. In this mutant, N-sulfation of heparan sulfate was disrupted after the lens induction stage, resulting in reduced lens cell proliferation, increased cell death and defective lens fiber differentiation in later lens development. The loss of Ndst function also prevented the assembly of Fgf/Fgfr complexes on the lens cell surface and disrupted ERK signaling within the lens. We further demonstrated that Ndst mutation completely inhibited the FGF1 and Fgf3 overexpression phenotypes, but Kras reactivation was sufficient to reverse the Ndst deficient lens differentiation defect. The epistatic relationship between Ndst and FGF-Ras signaling demonstrates that FGF signaling is the predominant signaling pathway controlled by Ndst in lens development.
Ndst; lens; heparan sulfate; FGF; Ras
Identification of protein complexes and functional modules from protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks is crucial to understanding the principles of cellular organization and predicting protein functions. In the past few years, many computational methods have been proposed. However, most of them considered the PPI networks as static graphs and overlooked the dynamics inherent within these networks. Moreover, few of them can distinguish between protein complexes and functional modules.
In this paper, a new framework is proposed to distinguish between protein complexes and functional modules by integrating gene expression data into protein-protein interaction (PPI) data. A series of time-sequenced subnetworks (TSNs) is constructed according to the time that the interactions were activated. The algorithm TSN-PCD was then developed to identify protein complexes from these TSNs. As protein complexes are significantly related to functional modules, a new algorithm DFM-CIN is proposed to discover functional modules based on the identified complexes. The experimental results show that the combination of temporal gene expression data with PPI data contributes to identifying protein complexes more precisely. A quantitative comparison based on f-measure reveals that our algorithm TSN-PCD outperforms the other previous protein complex discovery algorithms. Furthermore, we evaluate the identified functional modules by using “Biological Process” annotated in GO (Gene Ontology). The validation shows that the identified functional modules are statistically significant in terms of “Biological Process”. More importantly, the relationship between protein complexes and functional modules are studied.
The proposed framework based on the integration of PPI data and gene expression data makes it possible to identify protein complexes and functional modules more effectively. Moveover, the proposed new framework and algorithms can distinguish between protein complexes and functional modules. Our findings suggest that functional modules are closely related to protein complexes and a functional module may consist of one or multiple protein complexes. The program is available at http://netlab.csu.edu.cn/bioinfomatics/limin/DFM-CIN/index.html.
Most animals experience fasting–feeding cycles throughout their lives. It is well known that the liver plays a central role in regulating glycogen metabolism. However, how hepatic glycogenesis is coordinated with the fasting–feeding cycle to control postprandial glucose homeostasis remains largely unknown. This study determines the molecular mechanism underlying the coupling of hepatic glycogenesis with the fasting–feeding cycle.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
Through a series of molecular, cellular, and animal studies, we investigated how PPP1R3G, a glycogen-targeting regulatory subunit of protein phosphatase 1 (PP1), is implicated in regulating hepatic glycogenesis and glucose homeostasis in a manner tightly orchestrated with the fasting–feeding cycle.
PPP1R3G in the liver is upregulated during fasting and downregulated after feeding. PPP1R3G associates with glycogen pellet, interacts with the catalytic subunit of PP1, and regulates glycogen synthase (GS) activity. Fasting glucose level is reduced when PPP1R3G is overexpressed in the liver. Hepatic knockdown of PPP1R3G reduces postprandial elevation of GS activity, decreases postprandial accumulation of liver glycogen, and decelerates postprandial clearance of blood glucose. Other glycogen-targeting regulatory subunits of PP1, such as PPP1R3B, PPP1R3C, and PPP1R3D, are downregulated by fasting and increased by feeding in the liver.
We propose that the opposite expression pattern of PPP1R3G versus other PP1 regulatory subunits comprise an intricate regulatory machinery to control hepatic glycogenesis during the fasting–feeding cycle. Because of its unique expression pattern, PPP1R3G plays a major role to control postprandial glucose homeostasis during the fasting–feeding transition via its regulation on liver glycogenesis.
FAK opposes Rho activity and vimentin intermediate filament formation to promote podosome rosette assembly.
Podosomes are dynamic actin-enriched membrane structures that play an important role in invasive cell motility and extracellular matrix degradation. They are often found to assemble into large rosettelike structures in highly invasive cells. However, the mechanism of this assembly remains obscure. In this study, we identified focal adhesion kinase (FAK) as a key molecule necessary for assembly. Moreover, phosphorylation of p130Cas and suppression of Rho signaling by FAK were found to be important for FAK to induce the assembly of podosome rosettes. Finally, we found that suppression of vimentin intermediate filaments by FAK facilitates the assembly of podosome rosettes. Collectively, our results strongly suggest a link between FAK, podosome rosettes, and tumor invasion and unveil a negative role for Rho signaling and vimentin filaments in podosome rosette assembly.
The carboxylesterase Est55 has been cloned and expressed in Bacillus subtilis strains. Est55, which lacks a classical, cleavable N-terminal signal sequence, was found to be secreted during the stationary phase of growth such that there is more Est55 in the medium than inside the cells. Several cytoplasmic proteins were also secreted in large amounts during late stationary phase, indicating that secretion in B. subtilis is not unique to Est55. These proteins, which all have defined cytoplasmic functions, include GroEL, DnaK, enolase, pyruvate dehydrogenase subunits PdhB and PdhD, and SodA. The release of Est55 and those proteins into the growth medium is not due to gross cell lysis, a conclusion that is supported by several lines of evidence: constant cell density and secretion in the presence of chloramphenicol, constant viability count, the absence of EF-Tu and SecA in the culture medium, and the lack of effect of autolysin-deficient mutants. The shedding of these proteins by membrane vesicles into the medium is minimal. More importantly, we have identified a hydrophobic α-helical domain within enolase that contributes to its secretion. Thus, upon the genetic deletion or replacement of a potential membrane-embedding domain, the secretion of plasmid gene-encoded mutant enolase is totally blocked, while the wild-type chromosomal enolase is secreted normally in the same cultures during the stationary phase, indicating differential specificity. We conclude that the secretion of Est55 and several cytoplasmic proteins without signal peptides in B. subtilis is a general phenomenon and is not a consequence of cell lysis or membrane shedding; instead, their secretion is through a process(es) in which protein domain structure plays a contributing factor.
Klebsiella pneumoniae is the common cause of a global emerging infectious disease, community-acquired pyogenic liver abscess (PLA). Capsular polysaccharide (CPS) and lipopolysaccharide (LPS) are critical for this microorganism's ability to spread through the blood and to cause sepsis. While CPS type K1 is an important virulence factor in K. pneumoniae causing PLA, the role of LPS in PLA is not clear. Here, we characterize the role of LPS O antigen in the pathogenesis of K. pneumoniae causing PLA. NTUH-K2044 is a LPS O1 clinical strain; the presence of the O antigen was shown via the presence of 1,3-galactan in the LPS, and of sequences that align with the wb gene cluster, known to produce O-antigen. Serologic analysis of K. pneumoniae clinical isolates demonstrated that the O1 serotype was more prevalent in PLA strains than that in non-tissue-invasive strains (38/42 vs. 9/32, P<0.0001). O1 serotype isolates had a higher frequency of serum resistance, and mutation of the O1 antigen changed serum resistance in K. pneumoniae. A PLA-causing strain of CPS capsular type K2 and LPS serotype O1 (i.e., O1:K2 PLA strain) deleted for the O1 synthesizing genes was profoundly attenuated in virulence, as demonstrated in separate mouse models of septicemia and liver abscess. Immunization of mice with the K2044 magA-mutant (K1− O1) against LPS O1 provided protection against infection with an O1:K2 PLA strain, but not against infection with an O1:K1 PLA strain. Our findings indicate that the O1 antigen of PLA-associated K. pneumoniae contributes to virulence by conveying resistance to serum killing, promoting bacterial dissemination to and colonization of internal organs after the onset of bacteremia, and could be a useful vaccine candidate against infection by an O1:K2 PLA strain.
Identification of essential proteins is always a challenging task since it requires experimental approaches that are time-consuming and laborious. With the advances in high throughput technologies, a large number of protein-protein interactions are available, which have produced unprecedented opportunities for detecting proteins' essentialities from the network level. There have been a series of computational approaches proposed for predicting essential proteins based on network topologies. However, the network topology-based centrality measures are very sensitive to the robustness of network. Therefore, a new robust essential protein discovery method would be of great value.
In this paper, we propose a new centrality measure, named PeC, based on the integration of protein-protein interaction and gene expression data. The performance of PeC is validated based on the protein-protein interaction network of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The experimental results show that the predicted precision of PeC clearly exceeds that of the other fifteen previously proposed centrality measures: Degree Centrality (DC), Betweenness Centrality (BC), Closeness Centrality (CC), Subgraph Centrality (SC), Eigenvector Centrality (EC), Information Centrality (IC), Bottle Neck (BN), Density of Maximum Neighborhood Component (DMNC), Local Average Connectivity-based method (LAC), Sum of ECC (SoECC), Range-Limited Centrality (RL), L-index (LI), Leader Rank (LR), Normalized α-Centrality (NC), and Moduland-Centrality (MC). Especially, the improvement of PeC over the classic centrality measures (BC, CC, SC, EC, and BN) is more than 50% when predicting no more than 500 proteins.
We demonstrate that the integration of protein-protein interaction network and gene expression data can help improve the precision of predicting essential proteins. The new centrality measure, PeC, is an effective essential protein discovery method.
Environmental factors-induced dysfunction of esophageal squamous epithelium, including genomic DNA impairment and apoptosis, play an important role in the pathogenesis of esophageal squamous cell cancer. DNA damage-induced 45α (GADD45α) has been found promoting DNA repair and removing methylation marker, Therefore, in this study we will investigate whether GADD45α expression is induced and its mechanism in esophageal squamous cell cancer.
Two human esophageal squamous cell lines (ESCC), ECA109 and KYSE510 were cultured in RPMI-1640 medium supplemented with 10% fetal bovine serum (FBS). Lipofectamine 2000 was used to transfect cells. mRNA level of GADD45α was measured by reverse transcription-quantitive PCR (RT-qPCR), protein level of GADD45α was detected by western blot and Immunohistochemistry. Global DNA methylation of tissue sample was measured using the Methylamp Global DNA Methylation Quantification Ultra kit (Epigentek Group) and promoter methylation was measured by bisulfite sequencing.
GADD45a mRNA and protein levels were increased significantly in tumor tissue than that in adjacent normal tissue. Hypomethylation of global genomic DNA and GADD45α promoter were found in ESCC. The cell sensitivity to Cisplatin DDP was decreased significantly in Eca109 and Kyse510 cells, in which GADD45α expression was down-regulated by RNA interference (RNAi). In addition, silence of GADD45a expression in ESCC cells inhibited proliferation and promoted apoptosis.
Overexpression of GADD45α gene is due to DNA hypomethylation in ESCC. GADD45α may be a protective factor in DDP chemotherapy for esophageal squamous cell carcinoma.
Esophageal squamous cell cancer; GADD45α; DNA methylation; DNA damage
Chronic alcohol exposure affects the central nervous system, influences behavior, and induces neuroadaptive changes in vertebrate species including our own. The molecular mechanisms responsible for chronic alcohol effects have not been fully elucidated due to the complexity of alcohol’s actions. Here we use zebrafish, a novel tool in alcohol research, to reveal a large number of genes that respond to chronic alcohol treatment. We demonstrate differential gene expression in response to chronic alcohol treatment using full genome DNA microarrays and find a total of 1914 genes to show a minimum of 2-fold and significant expression level change (1127 were up- and 787 were down-regulated). Approximately two-thirds of these genes had no known previous functional annotation. The results of the microarray analyses correlated well with those obtained on a selected subset of genes analyzed by quantitative real-time RT-PCR. Analyses of the differentially expressed genes with known annotations were enriched for a variety of molecular functions. Only a fraction of these known genes has been reported in the literature to be alcohol related. We conclude that the zebrafish is an excellent tool for the analysis of genes associated with alcohol’s actions in vertebrates, one which may facilitate the discovery and better understanding of the mechanisms of alcohol abuse.
chronic alcohol exposure; DNA Microarray; gene chip; gene expression; gene function; zebrafish brain; alcohol adaptation
Semaphorin4D (SEMA4D) has been regarded as an important protein in tumor angiogenesis, though originally identified in neurodevelopment. SEMA4D is extensively expressed in several malignant solid tumors. Nevertheless, the function and expression of SEMA4D in epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is as yet not well understood. The aim of this study was to investigate SEMA4D expression in EOC and evaluate its clinical–pathological and prognostic significance. Immunohistochemistry was used to analyze SEMA4D expression and tumor angiogenesis-related proteins (HIF-1α and VEGF) in tissues from 40 patients with normal ovarian epithelia and 124 EOC patients. SEMA4D was found to be expressed in 61.3% of the 124 EOC tissues, which was significantly higher than in the normal ovarian epithelia (p < 0.001). SEMA4D expression correlated with HIF-1α and VEGF closely (ρ = 0.349 and 0.263, p < 0.001). Positive SEMA4D staining was significantly higher in tissues from patients with low histological grade, FIGO stage III-IV, lymph node metastasis and residual disease ≥1 cm (p < 0.05). In the Cox proportional hazard mode, SEMA4D expression and histologic grade were independent indicators of overall survival (OS) and progress-free survival (PFS) for EOC patients. These findings suggest that the cooperation of SEMA4D, HIF-1α, and VEGF may indicate poor prognosis for patients with EOC, thereby demonstrating that SEMA4D and its role in angiogenesis in EOC warrants further study.
Semaphorin4D; HIF-1; VEGF; ovarian cancer; prognosis
One of the most fundamental and challenging tasks in bio-informatics is to identify related sequences and their hidden biological significance. The most popular and proven best practice method to accomplish this task is aligning multiple sequences together. However, multiple sequence alignment is a computing extensive task. In addition, the advancement in DNA/RNA and Protein sequencing techniques has created a vast amount of sequences to be analyzed that exceeding the capability of traditional computing models. Therefore, an effective parallel multiple sequence alignment model capable of resolving these issues is in a great demand.
We design O(1) run-time solutions for both local and global dynamic programming pair-wise alignment algorithms on reconfigurable mesh computing model. To align m sequences with max length n, we combining the parallel pair-wise dynamic programming solutions with newly designed parallel components. We successfully reduce the progressive multiple sequence alignment algorithm's run-time complexity from O(m × n4) to O(m) using O(m × n3) processing units for scoring schemes that use three distinct values for match/mismatch/gap-extension. The general solution to multiple sequence alignment algorithm takes O(m × n4) processing units and completes in O(m) time.
To our knowledge, this is the first time the progressive multiple sequence alignment algorithm is completely parallelized with O(m) run-time. We also provide a new parallel algorithm for the Longest Common Subsequence (LCS) with O(1) run-time using O(n3) processing units. This is a big improvement over the current best constant-time algorithm that uses O(n4) processing units.