RarA is an AraC-type regulator in Klebsiella pneumoniae, which, when overexpressed, confers a low-level multidrug-resistant (MDR) phenotype linked to the upregulation of both the acrAB and oqxAB efflux genes. Increased rarA expression has also been shown to be integral in the development of tigecycline resistance in the absence of ramA in K. pneumoniae. Given its phenotypic role in MDR, microarray analyses were performed to determine the RarA regulon. Transcriptome analysis was undertaken using strains Ecl8ΔrarA/pACrarA-2 (rarA-expressing construct) and Ecl8ΔrarA/pACYC184 (vector-only control) using bespoke microarray slides consisting of probes derived from the genomic sequences of K. pneumoniae MGH 78578 (NC_009648.1) and Kp342 (NC_011283.1). Our results show that rarA overexpression resulted in the differential expression of 66 genes (42 upregulated and 24 downregulated). Under the COG (clusters of orthologous groups) functional classification, the majority of affected genes belonged to the category of cell envelope biogenesis and posttranslational modification, along with genes encoding the previously uncharacterized transport proteins (e.g., KPN_03141, sdaCB, and leuE) and the porin OmpF. However, genes associated with energy production and conversion and amino acid transport/metabolism (e.g., nuoA, narJ, and proWX) were found to be downregulated. Biolog phenotype analyses demonstrated that rarA overexpression confers enhanced growth of the overexpresser in the presence of several antibiotic classes (i.e., beta-lactams and fluoroquinolones), the antifungal/antiprotozoal compound clioquinol, disinfectants (8-hydroxyquinoline), protein synthesis inhibitors (i.e., minocycline and puromycin), membrane biogenesis agents (polymyxin B and amitriptyline), DNA synthesis (furaltadone), and the cytokinesis inhibitor (sanguinarine). Both our transcriptome and phenotypic microarray data support and extend the role of RarA in the MDR phenotype of K. pneumoniae.
Legal regulations often limit the medical care that paramedics can provide. Telemedical solutions could overcome these limitations by remotely providing expert support. Therefore, a mobile telemedicine system to support paramedics was developed. During the implementation phase of this system in four German emergency medical services (EMS), the feasibility and possible limitations of this system were evaluated.
After obtaining ethical approval and providing a structured training program for all medical professionals, the system was implemented on three paramedic-staffed ambulances on August 1st, 2012. Two more ambulances were included subsequently during this month. The paramedics could initiate a consultation with EMS physicians at a teleconsultation centre. Telemedical functionalities included audio communication, real-time vital data transmission, 12-lead electrocardiogram, picture transmission on demand, and video streaming from a camera embedded into the ceiling of each ambulance. After each consultation, telephone-based debriefings were conducted. Data were retrieved from the documentation protocols of the teleconsultation centre and the EMS.
During a one month period, teleconsultations were conducted during 35 (11.8%) of 296 emergency missions with a mean duration of 24.9 min (SD 12.5). Trauma, acute coronary syndromes, and circulatory emergencies represented 20 (57%) of the consultation cases. Diagnostic support was provided in 34 (97%) cases, and the administration of 50 individual medications, including opioids, was delegated by the teleconsultation centre to the paramedics in 21 (60%) missions (range: 1–7 per mission). No medical complications or negative interpersonal effects were reported. All applications functioned as expected except in one case in which the connection failed due to the lack of a viable mobile network.
The feasibility of the telemedical approach was demonstrated. Teleconsultation enabled early initiation of treatments by paramedics operating under the real-time medical direction. Teleconsultation can be used to provide advanced care until the patient is under a physician’s care; moreover, it can be used to support the paramedics who work alone to provide treatment in non-life-threatening cases. Non-availability of mobile networks may be a relevant limitation. A larger prospective controlled trial is needed to evaluate the rate of complications and outcome effects.
Telemedicine; Teleconsultation; Telepresence; Emergency medical service; Analgesia
We report the genome sequence of Klebsiella pneumoniae subsp. pneumoniae Ecl8, a spontaneous streptomycin-resistant mutant of strain ECL4, derived from NCIB 418. K. pneumoniae Ecl8 has been shown to be genetically tractable for targeted gene deletion strategies and so provides a platform for in-depth analyses of this species.
Bacteria employ complex transcriptional networks involving multiple genes in response to stress, which is not limited to gene and protein networks but now includes small RNAs (sRNAs). These regulatory RNA molecules are increasingly shown to be able to initiate regulatory cascades and modulate the expression of multiple genes that are involved in or required for survival under environmental challenge. Despite mounting evidence for the importance of sRNAs in stress response, their role upon antibiotic exposure remains unknown. In this study, we sought to determine firstly, whether differential expression of sRNAs occurs upon antibiotic exposure and secondly, whether these sRNAs could be attributed to microbial tolerance to antibiotics.
A small scale sRNA cloning strategy of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium SL1344 challenged with half the minimal inhibitory concentration of tigecycline identified four sRNAs (sYJ5, sYJ20, sYJ75 and sYJ118) which were reproducibly upregulated in the presence of either tigecycline or tetracycline. The coding sequences of the four sRNAs were found to be conserved across a number of species. Genome analysis found that sYJ5 and sYJ118 mapped between the 16S and 23S rRNA encoding genes. sYJ20 (also known as SroA) is encoded upstream of the tbpAyabKyabJ operon and is classed as a riboswitch, whilst its role in antibiotic stress-response appears independent of its riboswitch function. sYJ75 is encoded between genes that are involved in enterobactin transport and metabolism. Additionally we find that the genetic deletion of sYJ20 rendered a reduced viability phenotype in the presence of tigecycline, which was recovered when complemented. The upregulation of some of these sRNAs were also observed when S. Typhimurium was challenged by ampicillin (sYJ5, 75 and 118); or when Klebsiella pneumoniae was challenged by tigecycline (sYJ20 and 118).
Small RNAs are overexpressed as a result of antibiotic exposure in S. Typhimurium where the same molecules are upregulated in a related species or after exposure to different antibiotics. sYJ20, a riboswitch, appears to possess a trans-regulatory sRNA role in antibiotic tolerance. These findings imply that the sRNA mediated response is a component of the bacterial response to antibiotic challenge.
Tigecycline resistance in Klebsiella pneumoniae results from ramA upregulation that causes the overexpression of the efflux pump, AcrAB-TolC. Tigecycline mutants, derived from Ecl8ΔramA, can exhibit a multidrug resistance phenotype due to increased transcription of the marA, rarA, acrAB, and oqxAB genes. These findings support the idea that tigecycline or multidrug resistance in K. pneumoniae, first, is not solely dependent on the ramA gene, and second, can arise via alternative regulatory pathways in K. pneumoniae.
Transcriptional regulators, such as SoxS, RamA, MarA, and Rob, which upregulate the AcrAB efflux pump, have been shown to be associated with multidrug resistance in clinically relevant Gram-negative bacteria. In addition to the multidrug resistance phenotype, these regulators have also been shown to play a role in the cellular metabolism and possibly the virulence potential of microbial cells. As such, the increased expression of these proteins is likely to cause pleiotropic phenotypes. Klebsiella pneumoniae is a major nosocomial pathogen which can express the SoxS, MarA, Rob, and RamA proteins, and the accompanying paper shows that the increased transcription of ramA is associated with tigecycline resistance (M. Veleba and T. Schneiders, Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. 56:4466–4467, 2012). Bioinformatic analyses of the available Klebsiella genome sequences show that an additional AraC-type regulator is encoded chromosomally. In this work, we characterize this novel AraC-type regulator, hereby called RarA (Regulator of antibiotic resistance A), which is encoded in K. pneumoniae, Enterobacter sp. 638, Serratia proteamaculans 568, and Enterobacter cloacae. We show that the overexpression of rarA results in a multidrug resistance phenotype which requires a functional AcrAB efflux pump but is independent of the other AraC regulators. Quantitative real-time PCR experiments show that rarA (MGH 78578 KPN_02968) and its neighboring efflux pump operon oqxAB (KPN_02969_02970) are consistently upregulated in clinical isolates collected from various geographical locations (Chile, Turkey, and Germany). Our results suggest that rarA overexpression upregulates the oqxAB efflux pump. Additionally, it appears that oqxR, encoding a GntR-type regulator adjacent to the oqxAB operon, is able to downregulate the expression of the oqxAB efflux pump, where OqxR complementation resulted in reductions to olaquindox MICs.
Coatings of orthopedic implants are investigated to improve the osteoinductive and osteoconductive properties of the implant surfaces and thus to enhance periimplant bone formation. By applying coatings that mimic the extracellular matrix a favorable environment for osteoblasts, osteoclasts and their progenitor cells is provided to promote early and strong fixation of implants. It is known that the early bone ongrowth increases primary implant fixation and reduces the risk of implant failure. This review presents an overview of coating titanium and hydroxyapatite implants with components of the extracellular matrix like collagen type I, chondroitin sulfate and RGD peptide in different small and large animal models. The influence of these components on cells, the inflammation process, new bone formation and bone/implant contact is summarized.
RGD peptide; bone healing; chondroitin sulfate; collagen type I; hyaluronic acid; hydroxyapatite; implants; titanium
Tissue engineering and regenerative techniques targeting bone include a broad range of strategies and approaches to repair, augment, replace or regenerate bone tissue. Investigations that are aimed at optimization of these strategies until clinical translation require control of systemic factors as well as modification of a broad range of key parameters.
This article reviews a possible strategy using a tissue engineering approach and systematically describes a series of experiments evaluating the properties of an embroidered and surface coated polycaprolactone-co-lactide scaffold being considered as bone graft substitute for large bone defects. The scaffold design and fabrication, the scaffolds properties, as well as its surface modification and their influence in vitro are evaluated, followed by in vivo analysis of the scaffolds using orthotopic implantation models in small and large animals.
bone substitute; tissue engineering; scaffold; polycaprolactone-co-lactide; collagen type I; chondroitin sulfate; critical size defect; nude rat; sheep
Working memory training has been widely used to investigate working memory processes. We have shown previously that visual working memory benefits only from intra-modal visual but not from across-modal auditory working memory training. In the present functional magnetic resonance imaging study we examined whether auditory working memory processes can also be trained specifically and which training-induced activation changes accompany theses effects. It was investigated whether working memory training with strongly distinct auditory materials transfers exclusively to an auditory (intra-modal) working memory task or whether it generalizes to a (across-modal) visual working memory task. We used adaptive n-back training with tonal sequences and a passive control condition. The memory training led to a reliable training gain. Transfer effects were found for the (intra-modal) auditory but not for the (across-modal) visual transfer task. Training-induced activation decreases in the auditory transfer task were found in two regions in the right inferior frontal gyrus. These effects confirm our previous findings in the visual modality and extents intra-modal effects in the prefrontal cortex to the auditory modality. As the right inferior frontal gyrus is frequently found in maintaining modality-specific auditory information, these results might reflect increased neural efficiency in auditory working memory processes. Furthermore, task-unspecific (amodal) activation decreases in the visual and auditory transfer task were found in the right inferior parietal lobule and the superior portion of the right middle frontal gyrus reflecting less demand on general attentional control processes. These data are in good agreement with amodal activation decreases within the same brain regions on a visual transfer task reported previously.
auditory; n-back task; training; visual; working memory; plasticity; fMRI
Tigecycline resistance has been attributed to ramA overexpression and subsequent acrA upregulation. The ramA locus, originally identified in Klebsiella pneumoniae, has homologues in Enterobacter and Salmonella spp. In this study, we identify in silico that the ramR binding site is also present in Citrobacter spp. and that Enterobacter, Citrobacter and Klebsiella spp. share key regulatory elements in the control of the romA–ramA locus. RACE (rapid amplification of cDNA ends) mapping indicated that there are two promoters from which romA–ramA expression can be regulated in K. pneumoniae. Correspondingly, electrophoretic binding studies clearly showed that purified RamA and RamR proteins bind to both of these promoters. Hence, there appear to be two RamR binding sites within the Klebsiella romA–ramA locus. Like MarA, RamA binds the promoter region, implying that it might be subject to autoregulation. We have identified changes within ramR in geographically distinct clinical isolates of K. pneumoniae. Intriguingly, levels of romA and ramA expression were not uniformly affected by changes within the ramR gene, thereby supporting the dual promoter finding. Furthermore, a subset of strains sustained no changes within the ramR gene but which still overexpressed the romA–ramA genes, strongly suggesting that a secondary regulator may control ramA expression.
Klebsiella pneumoniae; romA; ramA; ramR; acrA; Tigecycline
The mechanism of stepwise acquired multidrug resistance in Acinetobacter baumannii isolates from a hospitalized patient was investigated. Thirteen consecutive multidrug-resistant isolates were recovered from the same patient over a 2-month period. The Vitek 2 system identified the isolates as meropenem-sensitive Acinetobacter lwoffii; however, molecular identification showed that the isolates were A. baumannii. Etest revealed that the isolates were meropenem resistant. The presence of oxacillinase (OXA)-type enzymes were investigated by sequencing. The clonal relatedness of isolates was assessed by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). Expression of the genes encoding the efflux pumps AdeB and AdeJ was performed by semiquantitative real-time reverse transcription-PCR (qRT-PCR). The adeRS two-component system was sequenced. All isolates had identical PFGE fingerprints, suggesting clonal identity. The first six isolates were positive for the novel blaOXA-164 gene. The following seven isolates, recovered after treatment with a combination of meropenem, amikacin, ciprofloxacin, and co-trimoxazole showed an increase of >7-fold in adeB mRNA transcripts and a missense mutation in blaOXA-164, converting it to blaOXA-58. Sequencing revealed a novel mutation in adeR. These data illustrate how A. baumannii can adapt during antimicrobial therapy, leading to increased antimicrobial resistance.
The Functional Movement ScreenTM (FMSTM) is a screening instrument which evaluates selective fundamental movement patterns to determine potential injury risk. However, despite its global use, there are currently no normative values available for the FMSTM.
To establish normative values for the FMSTM in a population of active, healthy individuals. Secondary aims were to investigate whether performance differed between males and females, between those with and without a previous history of injury, and to establish real-time inter-rater reliability of the FMSTM.
Two hundred and nine (108 females and 101 males) physically active individuals, aged between 18 and 40 years, with no recent (<6 weeks) history of musculoskeletal injury were recruited. All participants performed the FMSTM and were scored using the previously established standardized FMSTM criteria. A representative sub-group participant sample (28%) determined inter rater reliability.
The mean composite FMSTM score was 15.7 with a 95% confidence interval between 15.4 and 15.9 out of a possible total of 21. There was no statistically significant difference in scores between females and males (t207 = .979, p = .329), or those who reported a previous injury and those who did not (t207 = .688, p= .492). Inter-rater reliability (ICC3,1) for the composite FMSTM score was .971, demonstrating excellent reliability. Inter-rater reliability (Kappa) for individual test components of the FMSTM demonstrated substantial to excellent agreement (0.70 — 1.0).
Discussion and Conclusion:
This cross-sectional study provides FMSTM reference values for young, active individuals, which will assist in the interpretation of individual scores when screening athletes for musculoskeletal injury and performance factors.
Pre-participation screening; Functional Movement ScreenTM; injury risk; athletic performance
Mevalonate kinase deficiency (MKD) is an autoinflammatory disorder caused by mutations in the MVK gene resulting in decreased activity of the enzyme mevalonate kinase (MK). Although MK is required for biosynthesis of all isoprenoids, in MKD, in particular, the timely synthesis of geranylgeranyl pyrophosphate appears to be compromised. Because small guanosine triphosphatases (GTPases) depend on geranylgeranylation for their proper signaling function, we studied the effect of MK deficiency on geranylgeranylation and activation of the two small GTPases, RhoA and Rac1. We demonstrate that both geranylgeranylation and activation of the two GTPases are more easily disturbed in MKD cells than in control cells when the flux though the isoprenoid biosynthesis pathway is suppressed by low concentrations of simvastatin. The limited capacity of geranylgeranylation in MKD cells readily leads to markedly increased levels of nonisoprenylated and activated GTPases, which will affect proper signaling by these GTPases.
Ground hardness is considered one of the possible risk factors associated with rugby injuries.
To examine the contribution of ground hardness, rainfall and evapotranspiration to the incidence of injury, and to investigate seasonal injury bias throughout one full season of rugby union.
A prospective epidemiological study of rugby injuries was performed on 271 players from rugby union teams involved in the premier grade rugby competition in Dunedin, New Zealand. Ground hardness was measured before each match over 20 rounds with an industrial penetrometer, and local weather information was collected through the National Institute of Weather and Atmospheric Research and the Otago Regional Council. Poisson mixed models were used to describe injury incidence as a function of ground hardness throughout the season.
The overall injury incidence during the season was 52 injuries per 1000 match player‐hours (95% CI 42 to 65). Although injury incidence decreased gradually by round with a rate ratio of 0.98 (95% CI 0.96 to 0.99) (p = 0.036), and the hardness of match grounds decreased significantly over the season (0.16 MPa/round, 95% CI 0.12 to 0.21, p<0.001), a non‐significant association was demonstrated between injury incidence and ground hardness. Injury incidence was not associated with a combination of ground hardness, rainfall and evapotranspiration on the day of the match or cumulative rainfall and evapotranspiration before each match.
Seasonal change in ground hardness and an early‐season bias of injuries was demonstrated. Although the contribution of ground hardness to injury incidence was not statistically significant, match round and injury incidence were highly correlated, confirming a seasonal bias, which may confound the relationship of injury to ground condition.
rugby injuries; injury incidence; ground hardness; rainfall; evapotranspiration
Reverse genetics approaches rely on the detection of sequence alterations in target genes to identify allelic variants among mutant or natural populations. Current (pre-) screening methods such as TILLING and EcoTILLING are based on the detection of single base mismatches in heteroduplexes using endonucleases such as CEL 1. However, there are drawbacks in the use of endonucleases due to their relatively poor cleavage efficiency and exonuclease activity. Moreover, pre-screening methods do not reveal information about the nature of sequence changes and their possible impact on gene function. We present KeyPoint™ technology, a high-throughput mutation/polymorphism discovery technique based on massive parallel sequencing of target genes amplified from mutant or natural populations. KeyPoint combines multi-dimensional pooling of large numbers of individual DNA samples and the use of sample identification tags (“sample barcoding”) with next-generation sequencing technology. We show the power of KeyPoint by identifying two mutants in the tomato eIF4E gene based on screening more than 3000 M2 families in a single GS FLX sequencing run, and discovery of six haplotypes of tomato eIF4E gene by re-sequencing three amplicons in a subset of 92 tomato lines from the EU-SOL core collection. We propose KeyPoint technology as a broadly applicable amplicon sequencing approach to screen mutant populations or germplasm collections for identification of (novel) allelic variation in a high-throughput fashion.
The title compound, [Li2(C5H4NOS)2(C2H6O)]n, having two formula units in the asymmetric unit, forms infinite chains of Li2O2 rhombi along b, consisting of four independent Li and O atoms. Metal binding to 2-thiooxo-1,2-dihydropyridin-1-olate occurs in a bidentate fashion via O and S, and in a monodentate manner via the N-oxide O atom. π–π Interactions between polymeric chains are evident from centroid-to-centroid distances of pyridinethione fragments of 3.461 (6)–3.607 (6) Å. The N—O and C—S bond lengths are distinctively different from those in hitherto investigated NiII, ZnII and (H3C)2TlIII complexes of 2-thiooxo-1,2-dihydropyridin-1-olate, but correlate with those reported for 1-hydroxy- and 1-alkoxypyridine-2(1H)-thiones in the solid state.
Application of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) is revolutionizing human bio-medical research. However, discovery of polymorphisms in low polymorphic species is still a challenging and costly endeavor, despite widespread availability of Sanger sequencing technology. We present CRoPS™ as a novel approach for polymorphism discovery by combining the power of reproducible genome complexity reduction of AFLP® with Genome Sequencer (GS) 20/GS FLX next-generation sequencing technology. With CRoPS, hundreds-of-thousands of sequence reads derived from complexity-reduced genome sequences of two or more samples are processed and mined for SNPs using a fully-automated bioinformatics pipeline. We show that over 75% of putative maize SNPs discovered using CRoPS are successfully converted to SNPWave® assays, confirming them to be true SNPs derived from unique (single-copy) genome sequences. By using CRoPS, polymorphism discovery will become affordable in organisms with high levels of repetitive DNA in the genome and/or low levels of polymorphism in the (breeding) germplasm without the need for prior sequence information.
Study objective: This study investigates whether neighbourhood socioeconomic disadvantage may contribute to child behavioural and emotional problems, beyond the effects of parental socioeconomic status. It also examines the influence of neighbourhood disadvantage on changes in the frequency of behavioural problems from late childhood into early adolescence.
Design and setting: The study was conducted in a large community sample in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. An index of neighbourhood socioeconomic disadvantage was calculated for each of the city's 74 neighbourhoods. Multilevel regression analysis estimated effects of neighbourhood disadvantage and individual variables (parental socioeconomic status, child's gender, and age) on behavioural problems reported by children (Youth Self-Report) and parents (Child Behavior Checklist) and on changes in these scores over a two year follow up.
Participants: A cohort of all children born in 1978 and living in Rotterdam. Of those eligible, 73% (n=2587) participated in the first measurement (T1), at 10–12 years; 71% of the T1 respondents participated again two years later (T2), at 12–14 years.
Main results: Neighbourhood disadvantage was associated with higher Total, Internalising, and Externalising Problems, as assessed with both the Child Behavior Checklist and the Youth Self-Report, even after controlling for parental socioeconomic status. Neighbourhood disadvantage also seemed to contribute to increases in Total Problems over the follow up.
Conclusions: Living in a disadvantaged neighbourhood is associated with greater behavioural problems and may lead to an exacerbation of problems as children move from childhood into adolescence. Public health interventions to improve child mental health must take the neighbourhood environment into account.
Neighbourhood socioeconomic disadvantage and social capital have been associated with adolescent well-being, but the majority of studies were cross-sectional, and the time window over which the neighbourhood may impact on development is unknown. Therefore, the contribution of the neighbourhood environment to adolescents' quality of life and the course of these effects during the period of transition from childhood to early adolescence was examined.
A cohort of adolescents living in Maastricht (The Netherlands), with a mean age of 11.2 years at baseline and of 13.5 years at follow-up was followed. Adolescents who responded both at baseline and at follow-up were included in the analysis (n = 475). Multilevel regression analyses estimated neighbourhood effects while controlling for individual-level effects. Neighbourhood-level socioeconomic and social capital variables, individual-level confounders, and baseline values of the outcome measures were included in the models.
None of the neighbourhood factors was associated with changes in general health or mental health over the two-year period. However, two-year exposure to greater disparity between individual level socioeconomic status on the one hand and neighbourhood level of socioeconomic status on the other (e.g. high socioeconomic status adolescents living in deprived neighbourhoods and vice versa) negatively impacted on self-esteem and satisfaction.
The neighbourhood environment per se does not contribute to change in quality of life during the transition to early adolescence. However, adolescents living in families whose socioeconomic status deviates from the mean level of neighbourhood socioeconomic deprivation may be negatively affected.
Scalable multiplexed amplification technologies are needed for cost-effective large-scale genotyping of genetic markers such as single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). We present SNPWaveTM, a novel SNP genotyping technology to detect various subsets of sequences in a flexible fashion in a fixed detection format. SNPWave is based on highly multiplexed ligation, followed by amplification of up to 20 ligated probes in a single PCR. Depending on the multiplexing level of the ligation reaction, the latter employs selective amplification using the amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP®) technology. Detection of SNPWave reaction products is based on size separation on a sequencing instrument with multiple fluorescence labels and short run times. The SNPWave technique is illustrated by a 100-plex genotyping assay for Arabidopsis, a 40-plex assay for tomato and a 10-plex assay for Caenorhabditis elegans, detected on the MegaBACE 1000 capillary sequencer.
The MICs of ciprofloxacin for 33 clinical isolates of K. pneumoniae resistant to extended-spectrum cephalosporins from three hospitals in Singapore ranged from 0.25 to >128 μg/ml. Nineteen of the isolates were fluoroquinolone resistant according to the NCCLS guidelines. Strains for which the ciprofloxacin MIC was ≥0.5 μg/ml harbored a mutation in DNA gyrase A (Ser83→Tyr, Leu, or IIe), and some had a secondary Asp87→Asn mutation. Isolates for which the MIC was 16 μg/ml possessed an additional alteration in ParC (Ser80→IIe, Trp, or Arg). Tolerance of the organic solvent cyclohexane was observed in 10 of the 19 fluoroquinolone-resistant strains; 3 of these were also pentane tolerant. Five of the 10 organic solvent-tolerant isolates overexpressed AcrA and also showed deletions within the acrR gene. Complementation of the mutated acrR gene with the wild-type gene decreased AcrA levels and produced a two- to fourfold reduction in the fluoroquinolone MICs. None of the organic solvent-tolerant clinical isolates overexpressed another efflux-related gene, acrE. While marA and soxS were not overexpressed, another marA homologue, ramA, was overexpressed in 3 of 10 organic solvent-tolerant isolates. These findings indicate that multiple target and nontarget gene changes contribute to fluoroquinolone resistance in K. pneumoniae. Besides AcrR mutations, ramA overexpression (but not marA or soxS overexpression) was related to increased AcrAB efflux pump expression in this collection of isolates.
The prognostic significance of tumour cell proliferation was investigated in a series of 418 gastric carcinomas using the monoclonal antibody MIB-1. Owing to strong intratumoural heterogeneity of MIB-1 expression three different proliferation indices (PIs) were determined in all carcinomas: (1) PImax in areas of maximal tumour cell proliferation, (2) PIrand in areas randomly distributed over the whole tumour. (3) PIfront in areas exclusively located at the tumour invasion front. There was a strong intertumoral heterogeneity with PImax ranging from 4.9% to 92.2%, PIrand ranging from 3.4% to 81.4% and PIfront ranging from 4.2% to 87.1%. The mean values were 51.3% +/- 19.7 for PImax, 34.2% +/- 18.3 for PIrand and 37.2% +/- 19.5 for PIfront. Whereas no statistically significant correlation could be found between proliferative activity and the clinicopathological parameters depth of invasion, lymph node involvement or grade of tumour differentiation, there was a positive correlation between a high proliferation index at the tumour invasion front (PIfront) and the presence of blood or lymphatic vessel invasion. No significant correlation could be demonstrated between the different proliferation indices and survival, even when different subgroups of patients were analysed separately. The present results suggest that the immunohistochemical evaluation of the proliferation activity has no predictive value for the prognosis of gastric cancer patients or the identification of subgroups of patients who may be at higher risk.
This study has identified horizontally acquired genomic regions of enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157:H7 that regulate expression of the type III secretion (T3S) system encoded by the locus of enterocyte effacement (LEE). Deletion of O-island 51, a 14.93 kb cryptic prophage (CP-933C), resulted in a reduction in LEE expression and T3S. The deletion also had a reduced capacity to attach to epithelial cells and significantly reduced E. coli O157 excretion levels from sheep. Further characterization of O-island 51 identified a novel positive regulator of the LEE, encoded by ecs1581 in the E. coli O157:H7 strain Sakai genome and present but not annotated in the E. coli strain EDL933 sequence. Functionally important residues of ECs1581 were identified based on phenotypic variants present in sequenced E. coli strains and the regulator was termed RgdR based on a motif demonstrated to be important for stimulation of gene expression. While RgdR activated expression from the LEE1 promoter in the presence or absence of the LEE-encoded regulator (Ler), RgdR stimulation of T3S required ler and Ler autoregulation. RgdR also controlled the expression of other phenotypes, including motility, indicating that this new family of regulators may have a more global role in E. coli gene expression.