Rapid detection and differentiation of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is critical for the early diagnosis of difficult-to-treat nosocomial and community acquired clinical infections and improved epidemiological surveillance. We developed a microfluidics chip coupled with surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) spectroscopy (532 nm) “lab-on-a-chip” system to rapidly detect and differentiate methicillin-sensitive S. aureus (MSSA) and MRSA using clinical isolates from China and the United States. A total of 21 MSSA isolates and 37 MRSA isolates recovered from infected humans were first analyzed by using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and multilocus sequence typing (MLST). The mecA gene, which refers resistant to methicillin, was detected in all the MRSA isolates and different allelic profiles were identified assigning isolates as either previously identified or novel clones. A total of 17,400 SERS spectra of the 58 S. aureus isolates were collected within 3.5 hours using this optofluidic platform. Intra- and inter-laboratory spectral reproducibility yielded a differentiation index value of 3.43 to 4.06 and demonstrated the feasibility of using this optofluidic system at different laboratories for bacterial identification. A global SERS-based dendrogram model for MRSA and MSSA identification and differentiation to the strain level was established and cross-validated (Simpson index of diversity of 0.989) and had an average recognition rate of 95% for S. aureus isolates associated with a recent outbreak in China. SERS typing correlated well with MLST indicating that it has high sensitivity and selectivity and would be suitable for determining the origin and possible spread of MRSA. A SERS-based partial least-squares regression model could quantify the actual concentration of a specific MRSA isolate in a bacterial mixture at levels from 5 to 100% (regression coefficient, > 0.98; residual prediction deviation, >10.05). This optofluidic platform has advantages over traditional genotyping for ultrafast, automated and reliable detection and epidemiological surveillance of bacterial infections.
MRSA; microfluidics; Raman spectroscopy; chemometrics
Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) protein tyrosine phosphatase B (mPTPB) is a virulence factor secreted by the pathogen and mediates mycobacterial survival in macrophages by targeting host cell immune responses. Consequently, mPTPB represents an exciting new target to combat TB infection. We describe a medicinal chemistry-oriented approach that transforms a benzofuran salicylic acid scaffold into a highly potent (IC50 = 38 nM) and selective mPTPB inhibitor (>50 fold against a large panel of PTPs). Importantly, the inhibitor is capable of reversing the altered host immune responses induced by the bacterial phosphatase and restoring the macrophage’s full capacity to secrete IL-6 and undergo apoptosis in response to IFN-γ stimulation, validating the concept that chemical inhibition of mPTPB may be therapeutically useful for novel TB treatment. The study further demonstrates that bicyclic salicylic acid pharmacophores can be used to deliver PTP inhibitors with high potency, selectivity, and cellular efficacy.
The enzyme cofactor biotin (vitamin H or B7) is an energetically expensive molecule whose de novo biosynthesis requires 20 ATP equivalents. It seems quite likely that diverse mechanisms have evolved to tightly regulate its biosynthesis. Unlike the model regulator BirA, a bifunctional biotin protein ligase with the capability of repressing the biotin biosynthetic pathway, BioR has been recently reported by us as an alternative machinery and a new type of GntR family transcriptional factor that can repress the expression of the bioBFDAZ operon in the plant pathogen Agrobacterium tumefaciens. However, quite unusually, a closely related human pathogen, Brucella melitensis, has four putative BioR-binding sites (both bioR and bioY possess one site in the promoter region, whereas the bioBFDAZ [bio] operon contains two tandem BioR boxes). This raised the question of whether BioR mediates the complex regulatory network of biotin metabolism. Here, we report that this is the case. The B. melitensis BioR ortholog was overexpressed and purified to homogeneity, and its solution structure was found to be dimeric. Functional complementation in a bioR isogenic mutant of A. tumefaciens elucidated that Brucella BioR is a functional repressor. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays demonstrated that the four predicted BioR sites of Brucella plus the BioR site of A. tumefaciens can all interact with the Brucella BioR protein. In a reporter strain that we developed on the basis of a double mutant of A. tumefaciens (the ΔbioR ΔbioBFDA mutant), the β-galactosidase (β-Gal) activity of three plasmid-borne transcriptional fusions (bioBbme-lacZ, bioYbme-lacZ, and bioRbme-lacZ) was dramatically decreased upon overexpression of Brucella bioR. Real-time quantitative PCR analyses showed that the expression of bioBFDA and bioY is significantly elevated upon removal of bioR from B. melitensis. Together, we conclude that Brucella BioR is not only a negative autoregulator but also a repressor of expression of bioY and bio operons that separately function in biotin transport and the biosynthesis pathway.
Growing evidence indicates that the gut microbiota could have an important role in the development of diet- and lifestyle-induced diseases. It has been shown that modulation of the gut microbiota by means of probiotics and prebiotics could improve host health. An oat-based product fermented by the exopolysaccharide (EPS)-producing organism Pediococcus parvulus 2.6 has been reported to have a bifidogenic effect. To find out whether the effect could be attributed to the EPS or the bacterium, mice were fed a diet supplemented with 2% purified EPS or 108 CFU/g of live P. parvulus 2.6 for 6 weeks. Both supplementations altered the gut microbiota composition but in different directions. Purified EPS not only significantly lowered the microbial diversity (P < 0.001) but decreased the bifidobacterial population (P = 0.01). In contrast, the live EPS-producing bacterium P. parvulus 2.6 antagonized Enterobacteriaceae without disturbing the homeostasis of the cecal microbiota.
Cullin-RING ligases (CRLs) are a family of E3 ubiquitin ligase complexes that rely on either RING-box 1 (RBX1) or sensitive to apoptosis gene (SAG), also known as RBX2, for activity. RBX1 and SAG are both overexpressed in human lung cancer; however, their contribution to patient survival and lung tumorigenesis is unknown. Here, we report that overexpression of SAG, but not RBX1, correlates with poor patient prognosis and more advanced disease. We found that SAG is overexpressed in murine KrasG12D-driven lung tumors and that Sag deletion suppressed lung tumorigenesis and extended murine life span. Using cultured lung cancer cells, we showed that SAG knockdown suppressed growth and survival, inactivated both NF-κB and mTOR pathways, and resulted in accumulation of tumor suppressor substrates, including p21, p27, NOXA, and BIM. Importantly, growth suppression by SAG knockdown was partially rescued by simultaneous knockdown of p21 or the mTOR inhibitor DEPTOR. Treatment with MLN4924, a small molecule inhibitor of CRL E3s, also inhibited the formation of KrasG12D-induced lung tumors through a similar mechanism involving inactivation of NF-κB and mTOR and accumulation of tumor suppressor substrates. Together, our results demonstrate that Sag is a Kras-cooperating oncogene that promotes lung tumorigenesis and suggest that targeting SAG-CRL E3 ligases may be an effective therapeutic approach for Kras-driven lung cancers.
The nonlinear optical properties of nanocrystalline-Si/SiO2 (nc-Si/SiO2) multilayers have been investigated through Z-scan technique by using a Ti-sapphire laser with 50-fs pulse duration at 800 nm as a pump laser. It is interesting to note that with increasing the annealing temperature to make the sample change from amorphous phase to nanocrystalline state, the nonlinear absorption turns the reverse saturation absorption into saturation absorption while the nonlinear optical refraction is also changed simultaneously from self-defocusing to self-focusing. We propose that the localized states at the nc-Si/SiO2 interfaces play the key role in the observed switching behaviors. Our results demonstrate that the tunable optical nonlinearities can be achieved by controlling the microstructures of nc-Si, which can be used as engineering different nonlinear optical devices.
Optical nonlinearities; Nanocrystalline Si; Multilayers; Interface state; 42.65.-k; 42.65.Jx; 42.65.Pc
WUSCHEL-related homeobox (WOX) is a large group of transcription factors specifically found in plants. WOX members contain the conserved homeodomain essential for plant development by regulating cell division and differentiation. However, the evolutionary relationship of WOX members in plant kingdom remains to be elucidated. In this study, we searched 350 WOX members from 50 species in plant kingdom. Linkage analysis of WOX protein sequences demonstrated that amino acid residues 141–145 and 153–160 located in the homeodomain are possibly associated with the function of WOXs during the evolution. These 350 members were grouped into 3 clades: the first clade represents the conservative WOXs from the lower plant algae to higher plants; the second clade has the members from vascular plant species; the third clade has the members only from spermatophyte species. Furthermore, among the members of Arabidopsis thaliana and Oryza sativa, we observed ubiquitous expression of genes in the first clade and the diversified expression pattern of WOX genes in distinct organs in the second clade and the third clade. This work provides insight into the origin and evolutionary process of WOXs, facilitating their functional investigations in the future.
A convergent approach provides a convenient access to synthetically and biologically useful 3,4-disubstituted 5-hydroxy indoles. The one-pot procedure uses microwave heating to initiate an intramolecular [4+2]-cycloaddition of an alkynol segment onto a furan followed by a fragmentation, aromatization and N-Boc deprotection cascade. Yields range from 15-75%, with aromatic substituents providing better conversions. 4-Trimethylsilylated analogs undergo a 1,3-silatropic rearrangement to give the O-TMS ethers.
Aims: Activation of intrarenal renin–angiotensin system (RAS) has a detrimental effect on the progression of chronic kidney diseases (CKDs), although the regulation of intrarenal RAS remains unclear. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the role of advanced oxidation protein products (AOPPs) in intrarenal RAS activation. Results: AOPPs upregulated the expression of almost all components of RAS and increased activity of angiotensin-converting enzyme in cultured proximal tubular epithelial cells. The triggering effect of AOPP-albumin was 100-times stronger than that of unmodified albumin. The effect of AOPP-albumin was mainly mediated by a CD36-dependent, redox-sensitive signaling involving activation of protein kinase Cα, NADPH oxidase, and nuclear factor-κB/activation protein-1. Chronic AOPP–albumin loading in unilateral nephrectomy rats resulted in deposition of AOPPs in renal tubular cells accompanied with local RAS activation and functional perturbations such as increase in urinary albumin excretion. Accumulation of AOPPs was also detected in human renal tubular cells and correlated with expression of angiotensin II in renal biopsies from 19 patients with IgA nephropathy. Innovation and Conclusion: This study demonstrated for the first time that AOPPs modified albumin functions as a strong trigger of intrarenal RAS via a CD36-mediated, redox-dependent pathway. Given the fact that accumulation of AOPPs is prevalent in diabetes and CKD, targeting AOPPs could be a strategy for the therapeutic intervention of CKD. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 18, 19–35.
Emerging evidence suggests that the tumor microenvironment plays a critical role in regulating cancer stem cells (CSCs) and tumor progression through both autocrine and paracrine signaling. Elevated production of bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) from human ovarian cancer cells and stroma has been shown to increase CSC proliferation and tumor growth. Here, we report that Lin28, a stem cell factor, binds to BMP4 mRNA in epithelial ovarian carcinoma cells, thereby promoting BMP4 expression at the post-transcriptional level. As co-expression of Lin28 and Oct4 (another stem cell factor) has been implicated in ovarian cancer CSCs, we also determined that high levels of Lin28 are associated with an unfavorable prognosis when co-expressed with high levels of Oct4. Together, these findings uncover a new level of regulation of BMP4 expression and imply a novel Lin28/Oct4/BMP4-mediated mechanism of regulating ovarian tumor cell growth, thus holding potential for the development of new strategies for the diagnosis and treatment of ovarian cancer.
BMP4; Lin28/Oct4; ovarian cancer; posttranscriptional; tumor microenvironment
The population-based “Asymptomatic Polyvascular Abnormalities in Community (APAC) Study was designed to examine prevalence and associations of asymptomatic polyvascular abnormalities (APA) in a general population. In this report, the objectives, design and baseline data of the APAC study are described.
The study included 5,440 participants (40.1% women) with an age of 40+ years who were randomly selected from the population of the Kailuan Study which included 101,510 employees and retirees of the Kailuan Co. Ltd, a large coal mine industry located in Tangshan, Hebei, China. Exclusion criteria were previous cerebral stroke, transient ischemic attacks and coronary heart disease. In 2010 and 2011, information on potential cardiovascular risk factors was collected and all participants underwent transcranial Doppler sonography, measurement of the ankle brachial index, and bilateral carotid duplex sonography. In a first follow-up examination in 2012/2013, retinal photography and spectral-domain optical coherence tomography were additionally performed. In a planned long-term follow-up, data from clinical examinations and laboratory tests and the occurrence of cardiovascular or cerebrovascular events will be collected to build up a predicting model for the risk of ischemic events.
At baseline, mean age of the participants was 55.2±11.8 years, and men showed a significantly (P<0.001) higher prevalence of arterial hypertension (55.5% vs. 36.5%) and hyperlipidemia (50.7% vs. 46.0%) and a higher blood homocysteine concentration (18.68±10.28µmol/L versus 11.69±6.40µmol/L).
The APAC is the first study to prospectively evaluate the relationship between intracranial arterial stenosis, retinal nerve fiber layer changes, retinal microvascular signs, and the eventual development of cerebrovascular or cardiovascular events.
We have previously shown that elevated expression of mitotic kinase aurora kinase A (AURKA) in cancer cells promotes the development of metastatic phenotypes and is associated clinically with adverse prognosis. Here, we first revealed a clinically positive correlation between AURKA and autophagy-associated protein SQSTM1 in breast cancer and further demonstrated that AURKA regulated SQSTM1 through autophagy. Indeed, depletion by siRNA or chemical inhibition of AURKA by the small molecule VX-680 increased both the level of microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3-II (LC3-II) and the number of autophagosomes, along with decreased SQSTM1. Conversely, overexpression of AURKA inhibited autophagy, as assessed by decreased LC3-II and increased SQSTM1 either upon nutrient deprivation or normal conditions. In addition, phosphorylated forms of both RPS6KB1 and mechanistic target of rapamycin (MTOR) were elevated by overexpression of AURKA whereas they were suppressed by depletion or inhibition of AURKA. Moreover, inhibition of MTOR by PP242, an inhibitor of MTOR complex1/2, abrogated the changes in both LC3-II and SQSTM1 in AURKA-overexpressing BT-549 cells, suggesting that AURKA-suppressed autophagy might be associated with MTOR activation. Lastly, repression of autophagy by depletion of either LC3 or ATG5, sensitized breast cancer cells to VX-680-induced apoptosis. Similar findings were observed in cells treated with the autophagy inhibitors chloroquine (CQ) and bafilomycin A1 (BAF). Our data thus revealed a novel role of AURKA as a negative regulator of autophagy, showing that AURKA inhibition induced autophagy, which may represent a novel mechanism of drug resistance in apoptosis-aimed therapy for breast cancer.
AURKA; SQSTM1; autophagy; breast cancer; MTOR; apoptosis
The VjbR protein induced antibody responses in both human and animal brucellosis, and the vjbR mutant 16MΔvjbR is an ideal vaccine candidate because of the feasibility of using the VjbR as diagnostic antigen. To further characterize this vaccine candidate and provide information for vaccine development, in the present study, a whole genome DNA microarray of 16M were used to compare the transcriptome of the vjbR mutant to that of the wild type strains. A total of 126 genes were greatly differentially expressed in the vjbR mutant. A great proportion of virB and flagellar genes were differentially expressed in the vjbR mutant, implying that the vjbR regulate expression of virulence genes by sensing intracellular environments. Interestingly, the virB genes are regulated by the vjbR in independent manners as shown by their different fold changes and transcription abundances. A number of genes involved in translation, stress response, amino acid transport and metabolism, cell wall/membrane biogenesis, energy production and conversion, translation were differentially expressed. The vjbR mutant showed increased sensitivity to stresses of nutrition limitation, oxidative stress and acidification, and decreased survival in macrophage and mice, being consistent with its transcription profiles. These results indicated that the quorum sensing regulator vjbR could sense intracellular environments and response to them by regulate expression of virulence genes and other intracellular survival related genes, and therefore contribute to Brucella survival in host cells. This also provided direct evidence for the rational vaccine design by using antigenic global regulator for future development of genetically marked vaccine for brucellosis.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s12088-012-0293-8) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Brucella; vjbR; Transcriptome; Genetically marked live vaccine
Single particle magnetization and size measurements of micron and nano sized, magnetic particles were made using a previously described device referred to as Cell Tracking Velocimetry, CTV. Three types of commercially available, and commonly used, magnetic particles were studied in this report. While the CTV instrument provides individual particles measurements, the average magnetization and size measurements were found to have reasonable agreements with reported values from instruments which measure bulk values. In addition, the CTV instrument, using electromagnets, can also determine magnetization curves, which also proved to have reasonable agreement with other published studies. Given that magnetic separation and analysis technology is dependent on the quality of the magnetic particles used, studies such as this one using CTV provide not only average data, but also provides information with respect to the distribution of the properties such as magnetization and size. For example, the spread of the data in magnetic and settling velocities were found to be predominately due to the size distribution of the analyzed particles.
Magnetophoretic mobility; particle settling velocity; particle magnetic velocity; cell tracking velocimetry; magnetization
Progranulin (PGRN) is a secreted glycoprotein expressed in neurons and glia that is implicated in neuronal survival on the basis that mutations in the GRN gene causing haploinsufficiency result in a familial form of frontotemporal dementia (FTD). Recently, a direct interaction between PGRN and tumor necrosis factor receptors (TNFR I/II) was reported and proposed to be a mechanism by which PGRN exerts anti-inflammatory activity, raising the possibility that aberrant PGRN–TNFR interactions underlie the molecular basis for neuroinflammation in frontotemporal lobar degeneration pathogenesis. Here, we report that we find no evidence for a direct physical or functional interaction between PGRN and TNFRs. Using coimmunoprecipitation and surface plasmon resonance (SPR) we replicated the interaction between PGRN and sortilin and that between TNF and TNFRI/II, but not the interaction between PGRN and TNFRs. Recombinant PGRN or transfection of a cDNA encoding PGRN did not antagonize TNF-dependent NFκB, Akt, and Erk1/2 pathway activation; inflammatory gene expression; or secretion of inflammatory factors in BV2 microglia and bone marrow-derived macrophages (BMDMs). Moreover, PGRN did not antagonize TNF-induced cytotoxicity on dopaminergic neuroblastoma cells. Last, co-addition or pre-incubation with various N- or C-terminal-tagged recombinant PGRNs did not alter lipopolysaccharide-induced inflammatory gene expression or cytokine secretion in any cell type examined, including BMDMs from Grn+/− or Grn−/− mice. Therefore, the neuroinflammatory phenotype associated with PGRN deficiency in the CNS is not a direct consequence of the loss of TNF antagonism by PGRN, but may be a secondary response by glia to disrupted interactions between PGRN and Sortilin and/or other binding partners yet to be identified.
Carbonic anhydrase inhibitors (CAI) are mild diuretics, hence not widely used in fluid overloaded states. They are however the treatment of choice for certain non-kidney conditions. Thiazides, specific inhibitors of Na-Cl cotransport (NCC), are mild agents and the most widely used diuretics in the world for control of mild hypertension.
In addition to inhibiting the salt reabsorption in the proximal tubule, CAIs down-regulate pendrin, therefore leaving NCC as the major salt absorbing transporter in the distal nephron, and hence allowing for massive diuresis by the inhibitors of NCC in the setting of increased delivery of salt from the proximal tubule.
Experimental Protocols and Results
Daily treatment of rats with acetazolamide (ACTZ), a known CAI, for 10 days caused mild diuresis whereas daily treatment with hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) for 4 days caused hardly any diuresis. However, treatment of rats that were pretreated with ACTZ for 6 days with a combination of ACTZ plus HCTZ for 4 additional days increased the urine output by greater than 2 fold (p<0.001, n = 5) compared to ACTZ-treated animals. Sodium excretion increased by 80% in the ACTZ plus HCTZ group and animals developed significant volume depletion, metabolic alkalosis and pre-renal failure. Molecular studies demonstrated ∼75% reduction in pendrin expression by ACTZ. The increased urine output in ACTZ/HCTZ treated rats was associated with a significant reduction in urine osmolality and reduced membrane localization of AQP-2 (aquaporin2).
These results indicate that ACTZ down-regulates pendrin expression and leaves NCC as the major salt absorbing transporter in the distal nephron in the setting of increased delivery of salt from the proximal tubule. Despite being considered mild agents individually, we propose that the combination of ACTZ and HCTZ is a powerful diuretic regimen.
Beclin 1, a key regulator of autophagy, has been found to be aberrantly expressed in a variety of human malignancies. Herein, we employed immunohistochemistry (IHC) to detect the protein expression of Beclin 1 in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and paired normal adjacent lung tissues, and analyzed its clinicopathological/prognostic significance in NSCLC. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis was utilized to determine a cutoff point (>2 VS. ≤2) for Beclin 1 expression in a training set (n = 105). For validation, the ROC-derived cutoff value was subjected to analysis of the association of Beclin 1 with patients’ clinical characteristics and outcome in a testing set (n = 111) and the overall patient cohort (n = 216). Our data showed that Beclin 1 was significantly lower in NSCLC tissues compared with the adjacent normal tissues, negatively associating with tumor recurrence rate (65.8% VS 32.3%; p < 0.001). In the testing set and the overall patient cohort, low expression of Beclin 1 showed significantly inferior overall survival (OS) (p < 0.001) and progression-free survival (PFS) (p < 0.001) compared to high expression of Beclin 1. In the testing set and the overall patient cohort, the median duration of OS for patients with high and low expression of Beclin 1 was 108 VS. 24.5 months (p < 0.001) and 108 VS. 28 months (p < 0.001), respectively. Furthermore, low expression of Beclin 1 was also a poor prognostic factor within each stage of NSCLC patients. Multivariate analysis identified that Beclin 1 was an independent prognostic factor for NSCLC. Our findings in the present study provided evidence that Beclin 1 may thus emerge as an independent prognostic biomarker in this tumor entity in the future.
Obesity is linked to type 2 diabetes and risk factors associated to the metabolic syndrome. Consumption of dietary fibres has been shown to have positive metabolic health effects, such as by increasing satiety, lowering blood glucose and cholesterol levels. These effects may be associated with short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), particularly propionic and butyric acids, formed by microbial degradation of dietary fibres in colon, and by their capacity to reduce low-grade inflammation.
To investigate whether dietary fibres, giving rise to different SCFAs, would affect metabolic risk markers in low-fat and high-fat diets using a model with conventional rats for 2, 4 and 6 weeks.
Material and Methods
Conventional rats were administered low-fat or high-fat diets, for 2, 4 or 6 weeks, supplemented with fermentable dietary fibres, giving rise to different SCFA patterns (pectin – acetic acid; guar gum – propionic acid; or a mixture – butyric acid). At the end of each experimental period, liver fat, cholesterol and triglycerides, serum and caecal SCFAs, plasma cholesterol, and inflammatory cytokines were analysed. The caecal microbiota was analysed after 6 weeks.
Results and Discussion
Fermentable dietary fibre decreased weight gain, liver fat, cholesterol and triglyceride content, and changed the formation of SCFAs. The high-fat diet primarily reduced formation of SCFAs but, after a longer experimental period, the formation of propionic and acetic acids recovered. The concentration of succinic acid in the rats increased in high-fat diets with time, indicating harmful effect of high-fat consumption. The dietary fibre partly counteracted these harmful effects and reduced inflammation. Furthermore, the number of Bacteroides was higher with guar gum, while noticeably that of Akkermansia was highest with the fibre-free diet.
Innate immune responses are characterized by precise gene expression whereby gene subsets are temporally induced to limit infection, although the mechanisms involved are incompletely understood. We show that antiviral immunity in Drosophila requires the transcriptional pausing pathway, including Negative Elongation Factor (NELF) that pauses RNA Polymerase II (Pol II) and Positive Elongation Factor b (P-TEFb), which releases paused Pol II to produce full length transcripts. We identify a set of genes that is rapidly transcribed upon arbovirus infection, including components of antiviral pathways (RNA silencing, autophagy, JAK/STAT, Toll, and Imd) and various Toll receptors. Many of these genes require P-TEFb for expression and exhibit pausing-associated chromatin features. Furthermore, transcriptional pausing is critical for antiviral immunity in insects, as NELF and P-TEFb are required to restrict viral replication in adult flies and vector mosquito cells. Thus, transcriptional pausing primes virally-induced genes to facilitate rapid gene induction and robust antiviral responses.
This study documents the spatial and temporal distribution of Oct-4, Cdx-2 and acetylated H4K5 (H4K5ac) by immunocytochemistry staining using in-vivo-derived rabbit embryos at different stages: day-3 compact morulae, day-4 early blastocysts, day-4 expanded blastocysts, day-5 blastocysts, day-6 blastocysts and day-7 blastocysts. The Oct-4 signal was stronger in the inner cell mass (ICM)/epiblast cells than in the trophectoderm (TE) cells in all blastocyst stages except day-4 expanded blastocysts, where the signal was similarly weak in both the ICM and TE cells. The Cdx-2 signal was first detected in a small number of TE cells of day-4 early blastocysts, and became evident in the TE cells exclusively afterwards. A consistently strong H4K5ac signal was observed in the TE cells in all blastocyst stages examined. In particular, this signal was stronger in the TE than in the ICM cells in day-4 early blastocysts, day-4 expanded blastocysts and day-5 blastocysts. Double staining of H4K5ac with either Oct-4 or Cdx-2 on embryos at different blastocyst stages confirmed these findings. This work suggests that day 4 is a critical timing for lineage formation in rabbit embryos. A combination of Oct-4, Cdx-2 and H4K5ac can be used as biomarkers to identify different lineage cells in rabbit blastocysts.
Cdx-2; embryos; H4K5ac; in vivo; Oct-4; rabbit
Lin28 plays important roles in development, stem cell maintenance, oncogenesis and metabolism. As an RNA-binding protein, it blocks the biogenesis primarily of let-7 family miRNAs and also promotes translation of a cohort of mRNAs involved in cell growth, metabolism and pluripotency, likely through recognition of distinct sequence and structural motifs within mRNAs. Here, we show that one such motif, shared by multiple Lin28-responsive elements (LREs) present in Lin28 mRNA targets also participates in a Drosha-dependent regulation and may contribute to destabilization of its cognate mRNAs. We further show that the same mutations in the LREs known to abolish Lin28 binding and stimulation of translation also abrogate Drosha-dependent mRNA destabilization, and that this effect is independent of miRNAs, uncovering a previously unsuspected coupling between Drosha-dependent destabilization and Lin28-mediated regulation. Thus, Lin28-dependent stimulation of translation of target mRNAs may, in part, serve to compensate for their intrinsic instability, thereby ensuring optimal levels of expression of genes critical for cell viability, metabolism and pluripotency.
Lin28; Drosha; stem cell; oncogene; RNA stability; metabolism
Gastric cancer (GC) remains a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide and there is therefore a clear need to search for more sensitive early diagnostic biomarkers. We performed a systematic review of eight published miRNA profiling studies that compared GC tissues with adjacent noncancerous tissues. A miRNA ranking system was used that took the frequency of comparisons, direction of differential expression and total sample size into consideration. We identified five miRNAs that were most consistently reported to be upregulated (miR-21, miR-106b, miR-17, miR-18a and miR-20a) and two miRNAs that were downregulated (miR-378 and miR-638). Six of these were further validated in 32 paired sets of GC and adjacent noncancerous tissue samples using real-time PCR. MiR-21, miR-106b, miR-17, miR-18a and miR-20a were confirmed to be upregulatedin GC tissues, while the expression of miR-378 was decreased. Moreover, we found a significant association between expression levels of miR-21, miR-106b, miR-17, miR-18a and miR-20a and clinicopathological features of GC. These miRNAs may be used for diagnostic and/or prognostic biomarkers for GC and therefore warrant further investigation.
Autophagy is now emerging as a spotlight in trafficking events that activate innate and adaptive immunity. It facilitates innate pathogen detection and antigen presentation, as well as pathogen clearance and lymphocyte homeostasis. In this review, we first summarize new insights into its functions in immunity, which underlie its associations with autoimmunity. As some lines of evidence are emerging to support its role in autoimmune and autoinflammatory diseases, we further discuss whether and how it affects autoimmune diseases including systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes mellitus and multiple sclerosis, as well as autoinflammatory diseases, such as Crohn disease and vitiligo.
autoimmune disease; autoinflammatory disease; autophagy; immunity
The isodicentric Y (idic Y) chromosome is one of the most common aberrations of the human Y chromosome. Due to a structural instability during cell division, patients with idic Y may develop mosaic karyotypes with variable phenotypes. We present a rare case of a 25-year-old male with azoospermia and infertility. In this patient, an idic Yq was characterized by duplication of almost the entire Y chromosome in head-to-head fashion with breakpoints occurring at the distal Yp / Yp11.3 with sparing of both the AZF and SRY regions. We discuss the possible mechanisms of azoospermia in this patient and add to the limited evidence that exists regarding the importance of pseudoautosomal regions and meiotic sex chromosome pairing as part of normal spermatogenesis.
Azoospermia; Chromosomal mosaicism; Isodicentric Y; AZF