Introduction. There is no report about risk factors for renal deterioration according to the clinical stage, divided by the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) in type 2 diabetes. Materials and Methods. We evaluated the factors correlated with the annual eGFR decline in 1303 subjects with type 2 diabetes whose eGFR was ≥30 mL/min/1.73 m2. eGFR strata were defined by baseline eGFR value as follows: stratum 1: ≥90, stratum 2: ≥60, <90, and stratum 3: ≥30, <60. Results. The annual eGFR decline was 2.3 ± 5.4 mL/min/1.73 m2 in overall subjects. Multiple linear regression analysis demonstrated that age, male sex, systolic blood pressure, logarithmically transformed albumin excretion rate (AER), eGFR strata, and hemoglobin concentration were significantly correlated with the annual eGFR decline. When stratified by eGFR, the factors that showed a significant correlation were different among eGFR strata. AER was significantly correlated with annual eGFR decline in all eGFR strata. Hemoglobin concentration showed a significant correlation only in the advanced eGFR stratum. Conclusion. The factors correlated with the annual eGFR decline were different among eGFR strata in type 2 diabetes mellitus, and hemoglobin concentration and AER were important factors for renal deterioration, especially in the advanced eGFR stratum.
Zinc finger E-box binding (ZEB) proteins ZEB1 and ZEB2 are transcription factors essential in transforming growth factor (TGF)-β-mediated senescence, epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) and cancer stem cell function. ZEBs are negatively regulated by members of the miR-200 microRNA family, but precisely how tumor cells expressing ZEBs emerge during invasive growth remains unknown. Here we report that NOTCH3-mediated signaling prevents expansion of a unique subset of ZEB-expressing cells. ZEB expression was associated with the lack of cellular capability of undergoing NOTCH3-mediated squamous differentiation in human esophageal cells. Genetic inhibition of the Notch-mediated transcriptional activity by dominant-negative Mastermind-like1 (DNMAML1) prevented squamous differentiation and induction of Notch target genes including NOTCH3. Moreover, DNMAML1 enriched EMT competent cells exhibited robust upregulation of ZEBs, downregulation of the miR-200 family, and enhanced anchorage independent growth and tumor formation in nude mice. RNA interference (RNAi) experiments suggested the involvement of ZEBs in anchorage independent colony formation, invasion and TGF-β-mediated EMT. Invasive growth and impaired squamous differentiation was recapitulated upon Notch inhibition by DNMAML1 in organotypic 3D culture, a form of human tissue engineering. Together, our findings indicate that NOTCH3 is a key factor limiting the expansion of ZEB-expressing cells, providing novel mechanistic insights into the role of Notch signaling in the cell fate regulation and disease progression of squamous esophageal cancers.
Notch; EMT; squamous cell differentiation; ZEB1; miR-200
Besides well-established roles of bile acids (BA) in dietary lipid absorption and cholesterol homeostasis, it has recently become clear that BA is also a biological signaling molecule. We have shown that strategies aimed at activating TGR5 by increasing the BA pool size with BA administration may constitute a significant therapeutic advance to combat the metabolic syndrome and suggest that such strategies are worth testing in a clinical setting. Bile acid binding resin (BABR) is known not only to reduce serum cholesterol levels but also to improve glucose tolerance and insulin resistance in animal models and humans. However, the mechanisms by which BABR affects glucose homeostasis have not been established. We investigated how BABR affects glycemic control in diet-induced obesity models.
Methods and Findings
We evaluated the metabolic effect of BABR by administrating colestimide to animal models for the metabolic syndrome. Administration of BABR increased energy expenditure, translating into significant weight reduction and insulin sensitization. The metabolic effects of BABR coincide with activation of cholesterol and BA synthesis in liver and thermogenesis in brown adipose tissue. Interestingly, these effects of BABR occur despite normal food intake and triglyceride absorption. Administration of BABR and BA had similar effects on BA composition and thermogenesis, suggesting that they both are mediated via TGR5 activation.
Our data hence suggest that BABR could be useful for the management of the impaired glucose tolerance of the metabolic syndrome, since they not only lower cholesterol levels, but also reduce obesity and improve insulin resistance.
An 89-year-old man with diabetes treated with metformin 500 mg/day and glimepiride 4 mg/day was hospitalized because of hypoglycemic right hemiparesis and dysarthria (casual glucose value 1.8 mmol/L), which resolved quickly following administration of 40 mL of 40% dextrose. Hemiparesis is a rare symptom (4.2%) of hypoglycemia. There are about 200 case reports of hypoglycemic hemiparesis. The average glucose level at which hemiparesis developed was 1.8 mmol/L. Right-sided hemiparesis predominated (R 66%; L 34%). On imaging studies, abnormal findings were frequently observed in the internal capsule or splenium of the corpus callosum. The mechanism of hemiparesis is not fully understood. The existence of cases in which hypoglycemia cannot be distinguished from stroke on imaging studies suggests the importance of measurement of the blood glucose level when the symptoms of stroke are first recognized.
Diabetes; glimepiride; hypoglycemic hemiparesis; magnetic resonance; metformin
Several recent studies have reported that selectins are produced during ischemia-reperfusion injury, and that selectin ligands play an important role in cell binding to the endothelium and in liver metastasis. Portal clamping during pancreaticoduodenectomy with vessel resection for pancreatic head cancer causes hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury, which might promote liver metastasis. We investigated the liver colonization of pancreatic cancer cells under hepatic ischemia-reperfusion and examined the involvement of E-selectin and its ligands. A human pancreatic cancer cell line (Capan-1) was injected into the spleen of mice after hepatic ischemia-reperfusion (I/R group). In addition, to investigate the effect of an anti-E-selectin antibody on liver colonization in the IR group, mice received an intraperitoneal injection of the anti-E-selectin antibody following hepatic ischemia-reperfusion and tumor inoculation (IR+Ab group). Four weeks later, mice were sacrificed and the number of tumor nodules on the liver was compared to mice without hepatic ischemia-reperfusion (control group). The incidence of liver metastasis in the I/R group was significantly higher (16 of 20, 80%) than that in the control group (6 of 20, 30%) (P<0.01). Moreover, mice in the I/R group had significantly more tumor nodules compared to those in the control group (median, 9.9 vs. 2.7 nodules) (P<0.01). In the I/R+Ab group, only 2 of 5 (40%) mice developed liver metastases. RT-PCR and southern blotting of the liver extracts showed that the expression of IL-1 and E-selectin mRNA after hepatic ischemia-reperfusion was significantly higher than the basal levels. Hepatic ischemia-reperfusion increases liver metastases and E-selectin expression in pancreatic cancer. These results suggest that E-selectin produced due to hepatic ischemia-reperfusion is involved in liver metastasis.
ischemia-reperfusion injury; E-selectin; sialyl-LewisA; liver metastasis; pancreatic cancer; portal clamping
Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) is one of the most aggressive forms of squamous cell carcinomas. Common genetic lesions in ESCC include p53 mutations and EGFR overexpression, both of which have been implicated in negative regulation of Notch signaling. In addition, cyclin D1 is overexpressed in ESCC and can be activated via EGFR, Notch and Wnt signaling. To elucidate how these genetic lesions may interact during the development and progression of ESCC, we tested a panel of genetically engineered human esophageal cells (keratinocytes) in organotypic 3D culture (OTC), a form of human tissue engineering. Notch signaling was suppressed in culture and mice by dominant negative Mastermind-like1 (DNMAML1), a genetic pan-Notch inhibitor. DNMAML1 mice were subjected to 4-Nitroquinoline 1-oxide-induced oral-esophageal carcinogenesis. Highly invasive characteristics of primary human ESCC were recapitulated in OTC as well as DNMAML1 mice. In OTC, cyclin D1 overexpression induced squamous hyperplasia. Concurrent EGFR overexpression and mutant p53 resulted in transformation and invasive growth. Interestingly, cell proliferation appeared to be regulated differentially between those committed to squamous-cell differentiation and those invading into the stroma. Invasive cells exhibited Notch-independent activation of cyclin D1 and Wnt signaling. Within the oral-esophageal squamous epithelia, Notch signaling regulated squamous-cell differentiation to maintain epithelial integrity, and thus may act as a tumor suppressor by preventing the development of a tumor-promoting inflammatory microenvironment.
Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma; organotypic 3D culture; EGFR; P53; cyclin D1; Wnt; Notch; squamous-cell differentiation; invasion; 4-Nitroquinoline 1-oxide
Antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody (ANCA)-associated crescentic glomerulonephritis (CGN) is a major cause of rapidly progressive glomerulonephritis (RPGN). ANCA-associated CGN is generally classified into pauci-immune RPGN, in which there are few or no immune complexes.
A 78-year-old man presented with RPGN after a 7-year course of chronic proteinuria and hematuria with stable renal function. A blood examination showed a high titer of myeloperoxidase (MPO)-ANCA. A renal biopsy showed crescentic glomerulonephritis with abundant subepithelial, intramenbranous and subendothelial deposits by electron microscopy, leading to the diagnosis of ANCA-associated CGN superimposed on type 3 membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis (MPGN).
This case is unique in that type 3 MPGN and MPO-ANCA-associated CGN coexisted, and no similar case has been reported to date. Because ANCA-associated CGN has a predilection for elderly individuals and primary type 3 MPGN is rarely seen in this age group, coincidental existence appears less likely. This case may confer valuable information regarding the link between immune complex and ANCA-associated CGN.
Myeloperoxidase-antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody; Membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis; Immune complex; Rapidly progressive glomerulonephritis
Novel repressor regulates insulin sensitivity through interaction with Foxo1
This study characterizes a novel Foxo1 CoRepressor (FCoR) that regulates insulin sensitivity and energy metabolism as revealed by whole-body knockout. As target of PKA phosphorylation, FCoR modulates Foxo's acetylation known to control Foxo's biological activity.
Forkhead box-containing protein o (Foxo) 1 is a key transcription factor in insulin and glucose metabolism. We identified a Foxo1-CoRepressor (FCoR) protein in mouse adipose tissue that inhibits Foxo1's activity by enhancing acetylation via impairment of the interaction between Foxo1 and the deacetylase Sirt1 and via direct acetylation. FCoR is phosphorylated at Threonine 93 by catalytic subunit of protein kinase A and is translocated into nucleus, making it possible to bind to Foxo1 in both cytosol and nucleus. Knockdown of FCoR in 3T3-F442A cells enhanced expression of Foxo target and inhibited adipocyte differentiation. Overexpression of FCoR in white adipose tissue decreased expression of Foxo-target genes and adipocyte size and increased insulin sensitivity in Leprdb/db mice and in mice fed a high-fat diet. In contrast, Fcor knockout mice were lean, glucose intolerant, and had decreased insulin sensitivity that was accompanied by increased expression levels of Foxo-target genes and enlarged adipocytes. Taken together, these data suggest that FCoR is a novel repressor that regulates insulin sensitivity and energy metabolism in adipose tissue by acting to fine-tune Foxo1 activity.
acetylation; Foxo1; FCoR; Sirt1
Background/Aims. Arterial stiffness is an independent risk factor for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. This study was conducted to determine the effect of olmesartan (OLM) and azelnidipine (AZL) on arterial stiffness using the cardio-ankle vascular index (CAVI), which is a novel blood pressure (BP)-independent marker for arterial stiffness in hypertensive patients. Methods. Fifty-two consecutive hypertensive patients were randomly assigned either to a group treated with OLM monotherapy or to a group treated with OLM and AZL combination therapy. Clinical and biological parameters were measured before and 12 months after the start of this study. Results. Both therapies significantly and similarly reduced BP, augmentation index, and plasma aldosterone levels. The combination therapy significantly decreased CAVI and serum low-density lipoprotein (LDL-C) levels and these reductions were significantly greater than those produced with monotherapy. No significant differences in metabolic parameters were observed between the two therapies. Conclusion. The combination therapy with OLM and AZL had beneficial effects on arterial stiffness assessed by CAVI, LDL-C, and metabolism, despite the similar BP reduction, compared with OLM monotherapy. Since these markers are known to influence the future risk of cardiovascular events, combination therapy with OLM and AZL could be a useful choice for treating hypertensive patients.
Introduction. It was reported that 25-hydroxyvitamin D level was independently associated with anemia in chronic kidney diseases, but the relation between vitamin D and anemia in diabetes mellitus is not still certain. We analyzed the relation between plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D level and hemoglobin concentration.
Materials and Methods. A cross-sectional study in male patients with type 2 diabetes was performed. Correlation coefficients and standardized partial regression coefficient for the hemoglobin concentration were evaluated.
Results. Hemoglobin concentration was positively correlated with body mass index, HbA1c, estimated glomerular filtration rate, cholinesterase, and 25-hydroxyvitamin D level and negatively correlated with age, duration of diabetes mellitus, serum creatinine, and urinary albumin creatinine ratio. Multiple regression analysis revealed the independent relation of 25-hydroxyvitamin D to hemoglobin concentration.
Conclusions. Plasma circulating form of vitamin D is significantly associated with hemoglobin concentration in diabetes mellitus independent of the clinical markers for kidney function or nutrition.
Insulin and leptin intracellular signaling pathways converge and act synergistically on the hypothalamic phosphatidylinositol-3-OH kinase/3-phosphoinositide-dependent protein kinase 1 (PDK1). However, little is known about whether PDK1 in agouti-related peptide (AGRP) neurons contributes to energy homeostasis. We generated AGRP neuron-specific PDK1 knockout (AGRPPdk1−/−) mice and mice with selective expression of transactivation-defective Foxo1 (Δ256Foxo1AGRPPdk1−/−). The AGRPPdk1−/− mice showed reductions in food intake, body length, and body weight. The Δ256Foxo1AGRPPdk1−/− mice showed increased body weight, food intake, and reduced locomotor activity. After four weeks of calorie-restricted feeding, oxygen consumption and locomotor activity were elevated in AGRPPdk1−/− mice and reduced in Δ256Foxo1AGRPPdk1−/− mice. In vitro, ghrelin-induced changes in [Ca2+]i and inhibition of ghrelin by leptin were significantly attenuated in AGRPPdk1−/− neurons compared to control neurons. However, ghrelin-induced [Ca2+]i changes and leptin inhibition were restored in Δ256Foxo1AGRPPdk1−/− mice. These results suggested that PDK1 and Foxo1 signaling pathways play important roles in the control of energy homeostasis through AGRP-independent mechanisms.
The proximal straight tubule (S3 segment) of the kidney is highly susceptible to ischemia and toxic insults but has a remarkable capacity to repair its structure and function. In response to such injuries, complex processes take place to regenerate the epithelial cells of the S3 segment; however, the precise molecular mechanisms of this regeneration are still being investigated. By applying the “toxin receptor mediated cell knockout” method under the control of the S3 segment-specific promoter/enhancer, Gsl5, which drives core 2 β-1,6-N-acetylglucosaminyltransferase gene expression, we established a transgenic mouse line expressing the human diphtheria toxin (DT) receptor only in the S3 segment. The administration of DT to these transgenic mice caused the selective ablation of S3 segment cells in a dose-dependent manner, and transgenic mice exhibited polyuria containing serum albumin and subsequently developed oliguria. An increase in the concentration of blood urea nitrogen was also observed, and the peak BUN levels occurred 3–7 days after DT administration. Histological analysis revealed that the most severe injury occurred in the S3 segments of the proximal tubule, in which tubular cells were exfoliated into the tubular lumen. In addition, aquaporin 7, which is localized exclusively to the S3 segment, was diminished. These results indicate that this transgenic mouse can suffer acute kidney injury (AKI) caused by S3 segment-specific damage after DT administration. This transgenic line offers an excellent model to uncover the mechanisms of AKI and its rapid recovery.
Kidney proximal straight tubules; Transgenic mouse; Diphtheria toxin receptor; Acute kidney injury (acute renal failure)
Natriuretic peptides (NPs) have been characterized as vascular hormones that regulate vascular tone via guanylyl cyclase (GC), cyclic GMP (cGMP), and cGMP-dependent protein kinase (cGK). Recent clinical studies have shown that plasma NP levels were lower in subjects with the metabolic syndrome. The present study was conducted to elucidate the roles for NP/cGK cascades in energy metabolism.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
We used three types of genetically engineered mice: brain NP (BNP) transgenic (BNP-Tg), cGK-Tg, and guanylyl cyclase-A (GCA) heterozygous knockout (GCA+/−) mice and analyzed the metabolic consequences of chronic activation of NP/cGK cascades in vivo. We also examined the effect of NPs in cultured myocytes.
BNP-Tg mice fed on high-fat diet were protected against diet-induced obesity and insulin resistance, and cGK-Tg mice had reduced body weight even on standard diet; surprisingly, giant mitochondria were densely packed in the skeletal muscle. Both mice showed an increase in muscle mitochondrial content and fat oxidation through upregulation of peroxisome proliferator–activated receptor (PPAR)-γ coactivator (PGC)-1α and PPARδ. The functional NP receptors, GCA and guanylyl cyclase-B, were downregulated by feeding a high-fat diet, while GCA+/− mice showed increases in body weight and glucose intolerance when fed a high-fat diet. NPs directly increased the expression of PGC-1α and PPARδ and mitochondrial content in cultured myocytes.
The findings together suggest that NP/cGK cascades can promote muscle mitochondrial biogenesis and fat oxidation, as to prevent obesity and glucose intolerance. The vascular hormone, NP, would contribute to coordinated regulation of oxygen supply and consumption.
Angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) are known to reduce the cardiovascular risk in hypertensive patients. This study was designed to examine the effect of an ARB candesartan on subclinical atherosclerosis assessed by cardio-ankle vascular index (CAVI) in comparison with calcium channel blockers (CCBs) alone in hypertensive patients with metabolic syndrome (MetS). A total of 53 consecutive hypertensive patients with MetS were randomly assigned to the candesartan group, in which candesartan was added on, or the CCBs group, in which CCBs were added on. Clinical and biological parameters were obtained before and after the 12-month treatment period. The primary measure of efficacy was the %change in CAVI. When treated with candesartan, but not CCBs, CAVI significantly decreased from 8.7 to 7.7 by 11%. Blood pressure (BP) significantly decreased with both treatments, but the differences between groups were not significant. The changes in other parameters remained unchanged in both the groups. Analysis of covariance found that both the BP reduction and the therapy difference contributed to the decrease in CAVI, but the BP reduction was not involved in the decrease in CAVI caused by the difference in the therapy. Candesartan may be a better antihypertensive drug than CCBs to improve subclinical atherosclerosis of patients with MetS.
albuminuria; ambulatory blood pressure; calcium channel blockers; carotid intima-media thickness
The term “receptor-associated prorenin system” (RAPS) refers to the pathogenic mechanisms whereby prorenin binding to its receptor dually activates the tissue renin-angiotensin system (RAS) and RAS-independent intracellular signaling via the receptor. The aim of the present study was to define the association of the RAPS with diabetes-induced retinal inflammation.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
Long-Evans rats, C57BL/6 mice, and angiotensin II type 1 receptor (AT1-R)-deficient mice with streptozotocin-induced diabetes were treated with (pro)renin receptor blocker (PRRB). Retinal mRNA expression of prorenin and the (pro)renin receptor was examined by quantitative RT-PCR. Leukocyte adhesion to the retinal vasculature was evaluated with a concanavalin A lectin perfusion–labeling technique. Retinal protein levels of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and intercellular adhesion molecule (ICAM)-1 were examined by ELISA. Retinal extracellular signal–regulated kinase (ERK) activation was analyzed by Western blotting.
Induction of diabetes led to significant increase in retinal expression of prorenin but not the (pro)renin receptor. Retinal adherent leukocytes were significantly suppressed with PRRB. Administration of PRRB inhibited diabetes-induced retinal expression of VEGF and ICAM-1. To clarify the role of signal transduction via the (pro)renin receptor in the diabetic retina, we used AT1-R–deficient mice in which the RAS was deactivated. Retinal adherent leukocytes in AT1-R–deficient diabetic mice were significantly suppressed with PRRB. PRRB suppressed the activation of ERK and the production of VEGF, but not ICAM-1, in AT1-R–deficient diabetic mice.
These results indicate a significant contribution of the RAPS to the pathogenesis of diabetes-induced retinal inflammation, suggesting the possibility of the (pro)renin receptor as a novel molecular target for the treatment of diabetic retinopathy.
Vascular fibrosis is a major complication of hypertension and atherosclerosis, yet it is largely untreatable. Natriuretic peptides (NPs) repress fibrogenic activation of vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs), but the intracellular mechanism mediating this effect remains undetermined. Here we show that inhibition of RhoA through phosphorylation at Ser188, the site targeted by the NP effector cyclic GMP (cGMP)-dependent protein kinase I (cGK I), is critical to fully exert antifibrotic potential. cGK I+/− mouse blood vessels exhibited an attenuated P-RhoA level and concurrently increased RhoA/ROCK signaling. Importantly, cGK I insufficiency caused dynamic recruitment of ROCK into the fibrogenic programs, thereby eliciting exaggerated vascular hypertrophy and fibrosis. Transgenic expression of cGK I-unphosphorylatable RhoAA188 in VSMCs augmented ROCK activity, vascular hypertrophy, and fibrosis more prominently than did that of wild-type RhoA, consistent with the notion that RhoAA188 escapes the intrinsic inhibition by cGK I. Additionally, VSMCs expressing RhoAA188 became refractory to the antifibrotic effects of NPs. Our results identify cGK I-mediated Ser188 phosphorylation of RhoA as a converging node for pro- and antifibrotic signals and may explain how diminished cGMP signaling, commonly associated with vascular malfunction, predisposes individuals to vascular fibrosis.
OBJECTIVE—Blockade of angiotensin (Ang) II has been shown to prevent new-onset type 2 diabetes. We focused on the effects of AngII on muscle mitochondria, especially on their biogenesis, as an underlining mechanism of type 2 diabetes.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS—C2C12 cells and C57bl/6 mice were used to examine roles for AngII in the regulation of muscle mitochondria and to explore whether the effect was mediated by type 1 AngII receptor (AT1R) or type 2 receptor (AT2R).
RESULTS—C2C12 cells treated with 10−8–10−6 mol/l AngII reduced the mitochondrial content associated with downregulation of the genes involved in mitochondrial biogenesis. The action of AngII was diminished by blockade of AT2R but not AT1R, whereas overexpression of AT2R augmented the effect. AngII increased mitochondrial ROS and decreased mitochondrial membrane potential, and these effects of AngII were significantly suppressed by blockade of either AT1R or AT2R. Chronic AngII infusion in mice also reduced muscle mitochondrial content in association with increased intramuscular triglyceride and deteriorated glycemic control. The AngII-induced reduction in muscle mitochondria in mice was partially, but significantly, reversed by blockade of either AT1R or AT2R, associated with increased fat oxidation, decreased muscle triglyceride, and improved glucose tolerance. Genes involved in mitochondrial biogenesis were decreased via AT2R but not AT1R under these in vivo conditions.
CONCLUSIONS—Taken together, these findings imply the novel roles for AngII in the regulation of muscle mitochondria and lipid metabolism. AngII reduces mitochondrial content possibly through AT1R-dependent augmentation of their degradation and AT2R-dependent direct suppression of their biogenesis.
In Japan, gargling is a generally accepted way of preventing upper respiratory tract infection (URTI). The effectiveness of gargling for preventing URTI has been shown in a randomized controlled trial that compared incidences of URTI between gargling and control groups. From the perspective of the third-party payer, gargling is dominant due to the fact that the costs of gargling are borne by the participant. However, the cost-effectiveness of gargling from a societal perspective should be considered. In this study, economic evaluation alongside a randomized controlled trial was performed to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of gargling for preventing URTI from a societal perspective.
Among participants in the gargling trial, 122 water-gargling and 130 control subjects were involved in the economic analysis. Sixty-day cumulative follow-up costs and effectiveness measured by quality-adjusted life days (QALD) were compared between groups on an intention-to-treat basis. Incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) was converted to dollars per quality-adjusted life years (QALY). The 95% confidence interval (95%CI) and probability of gargling being cost-effective were estimated by bootstrapping.
After 60 days, QALD was increased by 0.43 and costs were $37.1 higher in the gargling group than in the control group. ICER of the gargling group was $31,800/QALY (95%CI, $1,900–$248,100). Although this resembles many acceptable forms of medical intervention, including URTI preventive measures such as influenza vaccination, the broad confidence interval indicates uncertainty surrounding our results. In addition, one-way sensitivity analysis also indicated that careful evaluation is required for the cost of gargling and the utility of moderate URTI. The major limitation of this study was that this trial was conducted in winter, at a time when URTI is prevalent. Care must be taken when applying the results to a season when URTI is not prevalent, since the ICER will increase due to decreases in incidence.
This study suggests gargling as a cost-effective preventive strategy for URTI that is acceptable from perspectives of both the third-party payer and society.
We previously demonstrated that vascular endothelial growth factor receptor type 2 (VEGF-R2)-positive cells induced from mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells can differentiate into both endothelial cells (ECs) and mural cells (MCs) and these vascular cells construct blood vessel structures in vitro. Recently, we have also established a method for the large-scale expansion of ECs and MCs derived from human ES cells. We examined the potential of vascular cells derived from human ES cells to contribute to vascular regeneration and to provide therapeutic benefit for the ischemic brain.
Phosphate buffered saline, human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (hMNCs), ECs-, MCs-, or the mixture of ECs and MCs derived from human ES cells were intra-arterially transplanted into mice after transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAo).
Transplanted ECs were successfully incorporated into host capillaries and MCs were distributed in the areas surrounding endothelial tubes. The cerebral blood flow and the vascular density in the ischemic striatum on day 28 after MCAo had significantly improved in ECs-, MCs- and ECs+MCs-transplanted mice compared to that of mice injected with saline or transplanted with hMNCs. Moreover, compared to saline-injected or hMNC-transplanted mice, significant reduction of the infarct volume and of apoptosis as well as acceleration of neurological recovery were observed on day 28 after MCAo in the cell mixture-transplanted mice.
Transplantation of ECs and MCs derived from undifferentiated human ES cells have a potential to contribute to therapeutic vascular regeneration and consequently reduction of infarct area after stroke.
(Pro)renin receptor-bound prorenin not only causes the generation of angiotensin II via the nonproteolytic activation of prorenin, it also activates the receptor’s own intracellular signaling pathways independent of the generated angiotensin II. Within the kidneys, the (pro)renin receptor is not only present in the glomerular mesangium, it is also abundant in podocytes, which play an important role in the maintenance of the glomerular filtration barrier. Recent in vivo studies have demonstrated that the overexpression of the (pro)renin receptor to a degree similar to that observed in hypertensive rat kidneys leads to slowly progressive nephropathy with proteinuria. In addition, the handle region peptide, which acts as a decoy peptide and competitively inhibits the binding of prorenin to the receptor, is more beneficial than an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor with regard to alleviating proteinuria and glomerulosclerosis in experimental animal models of diabetes and essential hypertension. Thus, the (pro)renin receptor may be upregulated in podocytes under hypertensive conditions and may contribute to the breakdown of the glomerular filtration barrier.
Angiotensin; Mitogen-activated protein kinases; Nonproteolytic activation; Podocytes; Prorenin
We demonstrated that mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells-derived vascular endothelial growth factor receptor-2 (VEGF-R2) positive cells could differentiate into both endothelial cells (EC) and mural cells (MC), and termed them as vascular progenitor cells (VPC). Recently, we have established a method to expand monkey and human ES cells-derived VPC with the proper differentiation stage in a large quantity. Here we investigated the therapeutic potential of human VPC-derived EC and MC for vascular regeneration.
Methods and Results
After the expansion of human VPC-derived vascular cells, we transplanted these cells to nude mice with hindlimb ischemia. The blood flow recovery and capillary density in ischemic hindlimbs were significantly improved in human VPC-derived EC-transplanted mice, compared to human peripheral and umbilical cord blood-derived endothelial progenitor cells (pEPC and uEPC) transplanted mice. The combined transplantation of human VPC-derived EC and MC synergistically improved blood flow of ischemic hindlimbs remarkably, compared to the single cell transplantations. Transplanted VPC-derived vascular cells were effectively incorporated into host circulating vessels as EC and MC to maintain long-term vascular integrity.
Our findings suggest that the combined transplantation of human ES cells-derived EC and MC can be used as a new promising strategy for therapeutic vascular regeneration in patients with tissue ischemia.
Hepatocyte growth factor activator inhibitor type 1 (HAI-1) is a membrane-associated Kunitz-type serine proteinase inhibitor that was initially identified as a potent inhibitor of hepatocyte growth factor activator. HAI-1 is also a cognate inhibitor of matriptase, a membrane-associated serine proteinase. HAI-1 is expressed predominantly in epithelial cells in the human body. Its mRNA is also abundant in human placenta, with HAI-1 specifically expressed by villous cytotrophoblasts. In order to address the precise roles of HAI-1 in vivo, we generated HAI-1 mutant mice by homozygous recombination. Heterozygous HAI-1+/− mice underwent normal organ development. However, homozygous HAI-1−/− mice experienced embryonic lethality which became evident at embryonic day 10.5 postcoitum (E10.5). As early as E9.5, HAI-1−/− embryos showed growth retardation that did not reflect impaired cell proliferation but resulted instead from failed placental development and function. Histological analysis revealed severely impaired formation of the labyrinth layer, in contrast all other placental layers, such as the spongiotrophoblast layer and giant cell layer, which were formed. Our results indicate that mouse HAI-1 is essential for branching morphogenesis in the chorioallantoic placenta and lack of HAI-1 function may result in placental failure.
The trefoil peptide intestinal trefoil factor (ITF) plays a critical role in the protection of colonic mucosa and is essential to restitution after epithelial damage. These functional properties are accomplished through coordinated promotion of cell migration and inhibition of apoptosis. ITF contains a unique three-looped trefoil motif formed by intrachain disulfide bonds among six conserved cysteine residues, which is thought to contribute to its marked protease resistance. ITF also has a seventh cysteine residue, which permits homodimer formation. A series of cysteine-to-serine substitutions and a C-terminally truncated ITF were made by PCR site-directed mutagenesis. Any alteration of the trefoil motif or truncation resulted in loss of protease resistance. However, neither an intact trefoil domain nor dimerization was required to promote cell migration. This pro-restitution activity correlated with the ability of the ITF mutants to activate mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase independent of phosphorylation of the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor. In contrast, only intact ITF retained both phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase and the EGF receptor-dependent antiapoptotic effect in HCT116 and IEC-6 cells. The inability to block apoptosis correlated with a loss of trefoil peptide-induced transactivation of the EGF receptor or Akt kinase in HT-29 cells. In addition to defining structural requirements for the functional properties of ITF, these findings demonstrate that distinct intracellular signaling pathways mediate the effects of ITF on cell migration and apoptosis.
Goblet cells are the major mucus-producing cells of the intestine and are presumed to play an important role in mucosal protection. However, their functional role has not been directly assessed in vivo. In initial studies, a 5′ flanking sequence of the murine intestinal trefoil factor (ITF) gene was found to confer goblet cell–specific expression of a transgene. To assess the role of goblet cells in the intestine, we generated transgenic mice in which ∼60% of goblet cells were ablated by the expression of an attenuated diphtheria toxin (DT) gene driven by the ITF promoter; other cell lineages were unaffected. We administered 2 exogenous agents, dextran sodium sulfate (DSS) and acetic acid, to assess the susceptibility of mITF/DT-A transgenic mice to colonic injury. After oral administration of DSS, 55% of control mice died, whereas DT transgenic mice retained their body weight and less than 5% died. Similarly, 30% of the wild-type mice died after mucosal administration of acetic acid, compared with 3.2% of the transgenic mice. Despite the reduction in goblet-cell number, the total amount of ITF was increased in the mITF/DT-A transgenic mice, indicating inducible compensatory mechanisms. These results suggest that goblet cells contribute to mucosal protection and repair predominantly through production of trefoil peptides.
J. Clin. Invest. 104:1539–1547 (1999).