Genome-wide association studies have seen unprecedented success in identifying genetic loci that correlate with disease susceptibility and severity. Early phases of these studies have predominantly been performed in the Caucasian populations. The next phase in medical genetics is to extend the exploration across genetically diverse populations to leverage on larger sample sizes for locating smaller effects that may be present in most human populations. However, discoveries from these studies do not actually reveal the underlying functional changes to the human genome, but only point to broad regions stipulated by the extent of linkage disequilibrium (LD). Fine-mapping the functional variants can, however, be hampered by extensive LD, which can yield multiple perfect surrogates that are not distinguishable from the underlying causal variants, although several studies have illustrated the value of relying on multiple genetically diverse populations to narrow the candidate regions where the functional variants can be found in. Here, we explore the efficiency of trans-ethnic meta-analysis in discovering genetic association and in fine-mapping the causal variants by asking: are there any population diversity metrics that will be useful for: (i) identifying the populations or genomic regions where meta-analysis are likely to be more successful for discovering associations?; (ii) identifying the populations or loci to perform deep targeted sequencing for the purpose of fine-mapping causal variants? Our results indicate that simple metrics like the FST or the population specificity of haplotypes are useful in trans-ethnic meta-analyses, while the degree of haplotype sharing and LD variation are informative of the efficiency in trans-ethnic fine-mapping.
linkage disequilibrium; genome-wide association study; meta-analysis; fine-mapping
The improvement of bone ingrowth into prosthesis and enhancement of the combination of the range between the bone and prosthesis are important for long-term stability of artificial joints. They are the focus of research on uncemented artificial joints. Porous materials can be of potential use to solve these problems.
This research aims to observe the characteristics of the new porous Ti-25Nb alloy and its biocompatibility in vitro, and to provide basic experimental evidence for the development of new porous prostheses or bone implants for bone tissue regeneration.
The Ti-25Nb alloys with different porosities were fabricated using powder metallurgy. The alloys were then evaluated based on several characteristics, such as mechanical properties, purity, pore size, and porosity. To evaluate biocompatibility, the specimens were subjected to methylthiazol tetrazolium (MTT) colorimetric assay, cell adhesion and proliferation assay using acridine staining, scanning electron microscopy, and detection of inflammation factor interleukin-6 (IL-6).
The porous Ti-25Nb alloy with interconnected pores had a pore size of 200 µm to 500 µm, which was favorable for bone ingrowth. The compressive strength of the alloy was similar to that of cortical bone, while with the elastic modulus closer to cancellous bone. MTT assay showed that the alloy had no adverse reaction to rabbit bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells, with a toxicity level of 0 to 1. Cell adhesion and proliferation experiments showed excellent cell growth on the surface and inside the pores of the alloy. According to the IL-6 levels, the alloy did not cause any obvious inflammatory response.
All porous Ti-25Nb alloys showed good biocompatibility regardless of the percentage of porosity. The basic requirement of clinical orthopedic implants was satisfied, which made the alloy a good prospect for biomedical application. The alloy with 70% porosity had the optimum mechanical properties, as well as suitable pore size and porosity, which allowed more bone ingrowth.
Esophageal cancer is the eighth most common cancer and sixth leading cause of cancer associated death worldwide. Besides environmental risk factors, genetic factors might play an important role in the esophageal cancer carcinogenesis. We conducted a hospital based case–control study to evaluate the genetic susceptibility of functional single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the microRNAs on the development of esophageal cancer. A total of 629 esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) cases and 686 controls were recruited for this study. The hsa-miR-34b/c rs4938723 T>C, pri-miR-124-1 rs531564 C>G, pre-miR-125a rs12975333 G>T and hsa-miR-423 rs6505162 C>A genotypes were determined using Ligation Detection Reaction (LDR) method. Our results demonstrated that hsa-miR-34b/c rs4938723 CC genotype had a decreased risk of ESCC. The association was evident among patients who never drinking. Hsa-miR-423 rs6505162 C>A might associated with a significantly increased risk of ESCC in patients who smoking. These findings indicated that functional polymorphisms hsa-miR-34b/c rs4938723 T>C and hsa-miR-423 rs6505162 C>A might alter individual susceptibility to ESCC. However, our results were obtained with a limited sample size. Future larger studies with other ethnic populations are required to confirm current findings.
The present case report describes the diagnosis and treatment of a patient with veno-occlusive disease (VOD) following liver transplantation. Combining the clinical data and relevant literature, the study aimed to consider the causes of VOD following liver transplantation, and the pathogenesis, clinical diagnosis and auxiliary examination features of VOD. A 42-year-old man who had a long history of taking traditional Chinese medicine (essential components unknown) underwent an orthotropic liver transplantation on January 14, 2011, due to small venous occlusion disease of the liver. The patient was treated with tacrolimus as an antirejection therapy following the surgery, and gradually developed right upper quadrant pain and fatigue. The examination results were consistent with the diagnostic standards for VOD. Following treatment with methylprednisolone, the patient was treated with alprostadil and Danhong injections. Forty days later, the patient’s total bilirubin (TBIL) level was observed to have decreased significantly, the liver function had returned to normal and the ascites had decreased, but had not completely disappeared. The patient then underwent a transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS) procedure, following which the ascites were shown to have completely disappeared.
veno-occlusive disease; liver transplantation; tacrolimus; treatment
Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) is a common malignant tumor of the head and neck, and recurrence is an important prognostic factor in patients with OSCC. We explored the factors associated with recurrence of OSCC and analyzed the survival of patients after recurrence. Clinicopathologic and follow-up data of 275 patients with OSCC treated by surgery in the Cancer Institute and Hospital of Tianjin Medical University between 2002 and 2006 were analyzed. Recurrence factors were analyzed with Chi-square or Fisher's exact test and multivariate analysis. The prognosis of patients after recurrence was analyzed with the Kaplan-Meier method and log-rank test. The recurrence rate was 32.7%. The recurrence time ranged from 2 to 96 months, with a median of 14 months. Univariate analysis showed that T stage, degree of differentiation, pN stage, flap application, resection margin, and lymphovascular invasion were factors of recurrence (P < 0.05). Multivariate analysis showed that T stage, degree of differentiation, and pN stage were independent factors of recurrence (P < 0.001). The differences in gender, age, tumor site, region of lymph node metastasis, and perineural invasion between the recurrence and non-recurrence groups were not significant (P > 0.05). Kaplan-Meier and log-rank tests showed that the 2- and 5-year survival rates were significantly lower in the recurrence group than in non-recurrence group (67.6% vs. 88.0%, 31.8% vs. 79.9%, P < 0.001). Therefore, to improve prognosis, we recommend extended local excision, flap, radical neck dissection, and adjuvant chemoradiotherapy for patients more likely to undergo recurrence.
Oral tumors; squamous cell carcinoma; recurrence; survival
Decorin binding protein A (DBPA) is an important lipoprotein from the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease. Absence of DBPA drastically reduces the pathogenic potential of the bacterium and biochemical evidence indicates DBPA’s interactions with the glycosaminoglycan (GAG) portion of decorin are crucial to its function. We have solved the solution structure of DBPA and studied DBPA’s interactions with various forms of GAGs. DBPA is determined to be a helical bundle protein consisting of five helices held together by a strong hydrophobic core. The structure also possesses a basic patch formed by portions of two helices and two flexible linkers. Low molecular weight heparin-induced chemical shift perturbations for residues in the region as well as increases in signal intensities of select residues in their presence confirm residues in the pocket are perturbed by heparin binding. Dermatan sulfate (DS) fragments, the dominant GAG type found on decorin, were shown to have lower affinity than heparin but are still capable of binding DBPA.
glycosaminoglycan; bacterial adhesin; GAG-protein interactions; solution NMR
The parasitoid wasp Nasonia vitripennis is an emerging genetic model for functional analysis of DNA methylation. Here, we characterize genome-wide methylation at a base-pair resolution, and compare these results to gene expression across five developmental stages and to methylation patterns reported in other insects. An accurate assessment of DNA methylation across the genome is accomplished using bisulfite sequencing of adult females from a highly inbred line. One-third of genes show extensive methylation over the gene body, yet methylated DNA is not found in non-coding regions and rarely in transposons. Methylated genes occur in small clusters across the genome. Methylation demarcates exon-intron boundaries, with elevated levels over exons, primarily in the 5′ regions of genes. It is also elevated near the sites of translational initiation and termination, with reduced levels in 5′ and 3′ UTRs. Methylated genes have higher median expression levels and lower expression variation across development stages than non-methylated genes. There is no difference in frequency of differential splicing between methylated and non-methylated genes, and as yet no established role for methylation in regulating alternative splicing in Nasonia. Phylogenetic comparisons indicate that many genes maintain methylation status across long evolutionary time scales. Nasonia methylated genes are more likely to be conserved in insects, but even those that are not conserved show broader expression across development than comparable non-methylated genes. Finally, examination of duplicated genes shows that those paralogs that have lost methylation in the Nasonia lineage following gene duplication evolve more rapidly, show decreased median expression levels, and increased specialization in expression across development. Methylation of Nasonia genes signals constitutive transcription across developmental stages, whereas non-methylated genes show more dynamic developmental expression patterns. We speculate that loss of methylation may result in increased developmental specialization in evolution and acquisition of methylation may lead to broader constitutive expression.
Insects use methylation to modulate genome function in a different manner from vertebrates. Here, we quantified the global methylation profile in a parasitic wasp species, Nasonia vitripennis, a model with some advantages over ant and honeybee for functional and genetic analyses of methylation, such as short generation time, inbred lines, and inter-fertile species. Using a highly inbred line permitted us to precisely characterize DNA methylation, which is compared to gene expression variation across developmental stages, and contrasted to other insect species. DNA methylation is almost exclusively on the 5′-most 1 kbp coding exons, and ∼1/3 of protein coding genes are methylated. Methylated genes tend to occur in small clusters in the genome. Unlike many organisms, Nasonia leaves nearly all transposable element genes non-methylated. Methylated genes exhibit more uniform expression across developmental stages for both moderately and highly expressed genes, suggesting that DNA methylation is marking the genes for constitutive expression. Among pairs of differentially methylated duplicated genes, the paralogs that lose DNA methylation after duplication in the Nasonia lineage show lower expression and greater specialization of expression. Finally, by comparative analysis, we show that methylated genes are more conserved at three different time scales during evolution.
Sepsis continues to be a challenge in clinic. The rates of mortality in sepsis patients remain high. The present study aimed to investigate the effects and the underlying mechanisms of carbon monoxide-releasing molecules II (CORM-2)-liberated CO on suppressing inflammatory response in sepsis. It was shown that treatment of septic mice with CORM-2 attenuated PMN accumulation, downregulated cytokines production, inhibited expressions of iNOS and NF-κB activity in the lung and liver. In parallel, CORM-2 prevented activation of NF-κB in LPS-stimulated HUVEC. This was accompanied by a decrease in ROS and NO production, expression of ICAM-1 and subsequent PMN adhesion to HUVEC. These findings demonstrated that CORM-released CO attenuates inflammatory responses by interfering with NF-κB activation and therefore decreasing the expression of ICAM-1 and NO production, attenuating the oxidative stress and inflammation in sepsis.
Resistance to chemotherapy is a major obstacle in cancer therapy. The main purpose of this study is to evaluate the potential of a folate receptor-targeting nanoparticle to overcome/minimize drug resistance and to explore the underlying mechanisms. This is accomplished with enhanced cellular accumulation and retention of paclitaxel (one of the most effective anticancer drugs in use today and a well-known P-glycoprotein (P-gp) substrate) in a P-gp-overexpressing cancer model. The folate receptor-targeted nanoparticle, HFT-T, consists of a heparin-folate-paclitaxel (HFT) backbone with an additional paclitaxel (T) loaded in its hydrophobic core. In vitro analyses demonstrated that the HFT-T nanoparticle was superior to free paclitaxel or non-targeted nanoparticle (HT-T) in inhibiting proliferation of P-gp-overexpressing cancer cells (KB-8-5), partially due to its enhanced uptake and prolonged intracellular retention. In a subcutaneous KB-8-5 xenograft model, HFT-T administration enhanced the specific delivery of paclitaxel into tumor tissues and remarkably prolonged retention within tumor tissues. Importantly, HFT-T treatment markedly retarded tumor growth in a xenograft model of resistant human squamous cancer. Immunohistochemical analysis further indicated that increased in vivo efficacy of HFT-T nanoparticles was associated with a higher degree of microtubule stabilization, mitotic arrest, antiangiogenic activity, and inhibition of cell proliferation. These findings suggest that when the paclitaxel delivered as an HFT-T nanoparticle, the drug is better retained within the P-gp-overexpressing cells than the free form of paclitaxel. These results indicated that the targeted HFT-T nanoparticle may be promising in minimizing P-gp related drug resistance and enhancing therapeutic efficacy compared with the free form of paclitaxel.
Targeting nanoparticle; paclitaxel; Folate receptor; drug resistance; chemotherapy
Previous studies have raised the possibility that Wnt signaling may regulate both neural progenitor maintenance and neuronal differentiation within a single population. Here we investigate the role of Wnt/β-catenin activity in the zebrafish hypothalamus and find that the pathway is first required for the proliferation of unspecified hypothalamic progenitors in the embryo. At later stages, including adulthood, sequential activation and inhibition of Wnt activity is required for the differentiation of neural progenitors and negatively regulates radial glia differentiation. The presence of Wnt activity is conserved in hypothalamic progenitors of the adult mouse, where it plays a conserved role in inhibiting the differentiation of radial glia. This study establishes the vertebrate hypothalamus as a model for Wnt-regulated post-embryonic neural progenitor differentiation, and defines specific roles for Wnt signaling in neurogenesis.
Xanthine oxidoreductase (XOR) is a cytoplasmic molybdenum-containing oxidoreductase, catalyzing both endogenous purines and exogenous compounds. It is suggested that XOR in porcine hepatocytes catalyzes the N-oxide reduction of quinoxaline 1,4-di-N-oxides (QdNOs). To elucidate the molecular mechanism underlying this metabolism, the cDNA of porcine XOR was cloned and heterologously expressed in Spodoptera frugiperda insect cells. The bovine XOR, showing sequence identity of 91% to porcine XOR, was employed as template for homology modeling. By docking cyadox, a representative compound of QdNOs, into porcine XOR model, eight amino acid residues, Gly47, Asn352, Ser360, Arg427, Asp430, Asp431, Ser1227 and Lys1230, were located at distances of less than 4Å to cyadox. Site-directed mutagenesis was performed to analyze their catalytic functions. Compared with wild type porcine XOR, G47A, S360P, D431A, S1227A, and K1230A displayed altered kinetic parameters in cyadox reduction, similarly to that in xanthine oxidation, indicating these mutations influenced electron-donating process of xanthine before subsequent electron transfer to cyadox to fulfill the N-oxide reduction. Differently, R427E and D430H, both located in the 424–434 loop, exhibited a much lower Km and a decreased Vmax respectively in cyadox reduction. Arg427 may be related to the substrate binding of porcine XOR to cyadox, and Asp430 is suggested to be involved in the transfer of electron to cyadox. This study initially reveals the possible catalytic mechanism of porcine XOR in cyadox metabolism, providing with novel insights into the structure-function relationship of XOR in the reduction of exogenous di-N-oxides.
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is the most common indication for liver transplantation and the major cause of graft failure. A widely used immunosuppressant, cyclosporine A (CsA), for people who receive organ transplantation, has been recognized to have the ability to inhibit HCV replication both in vivo and in vitro. In this study, we investigated the effects of several other immunosuppressants, including mycophenolate mofetil (MMF), rapamycin and FK506, on HCV replication in human hepatic cells. MMF treatment of hepatic cells before or during HCV infection significantly suppressed full cycle viral replication, as evidenced by decreased expression of HCV RNA, protein and production of infectious virus. In contrast, rapamycin and FK506 had little effect on HCV replication. Investigation of the mechanism(s) disclosed that the inhibition of HCV replication by MMF was mainly due to its depletion of guanosine, a purine nucleoside crucial for synthesis of guanosine triphosphate, which is required for HCV RNA replication. The supplement of exogenous guanosine could reverse most of anti-HCV effect of mycophenolate mofetil. These data indicate that MMF, through the depletion of guanosine, inhibits full cycle HCV JFH-1 replication in human hepatic cells. It is of interest to further determine whether MMF is indeed beneficial for HCV-infected transplant recipients in future clinical studies.
HCV recurrence; liver transplantation; immunosuppressant; mycophenolate mofetil
Paraoxonase 3 (PON3) is a member of the PON family, which includes PON1, PON2, and PON3. Recently, PON3 was shown to prevent the oxidation of low-density lipoprotein in vitro. To test the role of PON3 in atherosclerosis and related traits, 2 independent lines of human PON3 transgenic (Tg) mice on the C57BL/6J (B6) background were constructed. Human PON3 mRNA was detected in various tissues, including liver, lung, kidney, brain, adipose, and aorta, of both lines of Tg mice. The human PON3 mRNA levels in the livers of PON3 Tg mice were 4- to 7-fold higher as compared with the endogenous mouse Pon3 mRNA levels. Human PON3 protein and activity were detected in the livers of Tg mice as well. No significant differences in plasma total, high-density lipoprotein, and very-low-density lipoprotein/low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and triglyceride and glucose levels were observed between the PON3 Tg and non-Tg mice. Interestingly, atherosclerotic lesion areas were significantly smaller in both lines of male PON3 Tg mice as compared with the male non-Tg littermates on B6 background fed an atherogenic diet. When bred onto the low-density lipoprotein receptor knockout mouse background, the male PON3 Tg mice also exhibited decreased atherosclerotic lesion areas and decreased expression of monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 in the aorta as compared with the male non-Tg littermates. In addition, decreased adiposity and lower circulating leptin levels were observed in both lines of male PON3 Tg mice as compared with the male non-Tg mice. In an F2 cross, adipose Pon3 mRNA levels inversely correlated with adiposity and related traits. Our study demonstrates that elevated PON3 expression significantly decreases atherosclerotic lesion formation and adiposity in male mice. PON3 may play an important role in protection against obesity and atherosclerosis.
atherosclerosis; obesity; genetics
Non-specific distribution of chemotherapeutic drugs (such as paclitaxel) is a major factor contributing to side effects and poor clinical outcomes in the treatment of human head and neck cancer. To develop novel drug delivery systems with enhanced efficacy and minimized adverse effects, we synthesized a ternary conjugate heparin-folic acid-paclitaxel (HFT), loaded with additional paclitaxel (T). The resulting nanoparticle, HFT-T, is expected to retain the antitumor activity of paclitaxel and specifically target folate receptor (FR)-expressing tumors, thereby increasing the bioavailability and efficacy of paclitaxel. In vitro experiments found that HFT-T selectively recognizes FR-positive human head and neck cancer cell line KB-3-1, displaying higher cytotoxicity compared to the free form of paclitaxel. In a subcutaneous KB-3-1 xenograft model, HFT-T administration enhanced the specific delivery of paclitaxel into tumor tissues and remarkably improved antitumor efficacy of paclitaxel. The average tumor volume in the HFT-T treatment group was 92.9±78.2mm3
vs 1670.3±286.1mm3 in the mice treated with free paclitaxel. Furthermore, paclitaxel tumors showed a resurgence of growth after several weeks of treatment, but this was not observed with HFT-T. This indicates that HFT-T could be more effective in preventing tumors from developing drug resistance. No significant acute in vivo toxicity was observed. These results indicate that specific delivery of paclitaxel with a ternary structured nanoparticle (HFT-T) targeting FR-positive tumor is a promising strategy to enhance chemotherapy efficacy and minimize adverse effects.
Targeting nanoparticle; specific drug delivery; folate receptor; paclitaxel; chemotherapy
Excessive circular fatty acid, particlarly saturated fatty acid, can result in insulin resistance in skeletal muscle, but other adverse effects of fatty acid accumulation in myocytes remain unclear.
Differentiated C2C12 myotubes were used. The effects of palmitate on cell viability, glucose uptake, gene expression and myotube loss were evaluated by MTT assay, 2NBDG uptake, qRT-PCR, Western Blot and crystal staining-based myotube counting, respectively. In some expreiments, oleate was administrated, or the inhibitors of signaling pathways were applied.
Palmitate-induced cellular insulin resistance was clarified by the reduced Akt phosphorylation, glucose uptake and Glut4 expression. Palmitate-caused myotube loss was clearly observed under microscope and proved by myotube counting and expression analysis of myotube marker genes. Moreover, palmitate-induced transcriptional suppression of three health benefit myokine genes (FNDC5, CTRP15 and FGF21) was found, and the different involvement of p38 and PI3K in the transcription of these genes was noticed.
Palmitate-induced insulin resistance accompanys myotube loss and the impaired expression of FNDC5, CTRP15 and FGF21genes in C2C12 myotubes. These results provide novel evidence indicating the negative role of high concentration of palmitate in myotubes.
Palmitate; Myotube loss; Myokine; Insulin resistance
MicroRNAs are a class of small non-coding RNAs that play an important role in various human tumor initiation and progression by regulating gene expression negatively. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of miR-214 on cell proliferation, migration and invasion, as well as the functional connection between miR-214 and PTEN in gastric cancer.
miR-214 and PTEN expression was determined in gastric cancer and matched normal tissues, and human gastric cancer cell lines by quantitative real-time PCR. The roles of miR-214 in cell proliferation, migration and invasion were analyzed with anti-miR-214 transfected cells. In addition, the regulation of PTEN by miR-214 was evaluated by Western blotting and luciferase reporter assays.
miR-214 was noted to be highly overexpressed in gastric cancer tissues and cell lines using qRT-PCR. The expression level of miR-214 is significantly associated with clinical progression and poor prognosis according to the analysis of the clinicopathologic data. We also found that the miR-214 levels are inversely correlated with PTEN in tumor tissues. And PTEN expression level is also associated with metastasis and invasion of gastric cancer. In addition, knockdown of miR-214 could significantly inhibit proliferation, migration and invasion of gastric cancer cells. Moreover, we demonstrate that PTEN is regulated negatively by miR-214 through a miR-214 binding site within the 3’-UTR of PTEN at the posttranscriptional level in gastric cancer cells.
These findings indicated that miR-214 regulated the proliferation, migration and invasion by targeting PTEN post-transcriptionally in gastric cancer. It may be a novel potential therapeutic agent for gastric cancer.
miR-214; PTEN; Gastric cancer; Proliferation; Invasion
Data are accumulating to support a role for adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in breast cancer progression; however, to date most studies have relied on adipose MSCs from non-breast sources. There is a particular need to investigate the role of adipose MSCs in the pathogenesis of basal-like breast cancer, which develops at a disproportionate rate in pre-menopausal African-American women with a gain in adiposity. The aim of this study was to better understand how breast adipose MSCs (bMSCs) contribute to the progression of basal-like breast cancers by relying on isogenic HMT-3255 S3 (pre-invasive) and T4-2 (invasive) human cells that upon transplantation into nude mice resemble this tumor subtype. In vitro results suggested that bMSCs may contribute to breast cancer progression in multiple ways. bMSCs readily penetrate extracellular matrix components in part through their expression of matrix metalloproteinases 1 and 3, promote the invasion of T4-2 cells and efficiently chemoattract endothelial cells via a bFGF-independent, VEGF-A-dependent manner. As mixed xenografts, bMSCs stimulated the growth, invasion and desmoplasia of T4-2 tumors, yet these resident stem cells showed no observable effect on the progression of pre-invasive S3 cells. While bMSCs form vessel-like structures within Matrigel both in vitro and in vivo and chemoattract endothelial cells, there appeared to be no difference between T4-2/bMSC mixed xenografts and T4-2 xenografts with regard to intra- or peri-tumoral vascularity. Collectively, our data suggest that bMSCs may contribute to the progression of basal-like breast cancers by stimulating growth and invasion but not vasculogenesis or angiogenesis.
MMPs; adipose; breast cancer; desmoplasia; invasion; mesenchymal stem cells
Studies elucidated that Th17 cells are important contributors to the pathogenesis of many immune-mediated diseases, and IL-17A is present in pathologic intervertebral disc (IVD) tissues. However, the mechanisms, how these cells traffic into the degenerate discs are not clear.
Materials and Methods
The samples collected from 53 patients had been divided into 3 groups: Group P (annulus fibrosus was intact), Group E (annulus fibrosus was reptured) and normal control. Immunohistochemistry was used to detect the expression of CCL20, CCR6, IL-17A, TNF–α and CD4 in IVD tissues. Moreover, nucleus pulposus (NP) cells had been cultured in the presence and absence of Th17 associated cytokines. The supernatants were detected for CCL20 concentrations by ELISA, and the NP cells for the expression of CCL20 mRNA. Additionally, peripheral blood (PB) samples had undergone detection for the expression of CCR6 mRNA and the proportion of IL-17-producing cells, including the surface expression of CCR6.
Immunohistochemistry revealed that CCL20 and TNF-α were expressed in degenerated NP cells. Double-labeled immunofluorescence elaborated, IL-17-producing cells (CD4+IL-17A+ and CD4+CCR6+) appeared in the Group E samples, but no traces or expression in Group P and normal control. IL-17A and TNF-α, alone or combined, could enhance CCL20 secretion in a dose-dependent manner, which was obtained through RT-PCR results. There was a notable difference of CCR6 mRNA expression between patients and normal controls. In comparison to controls, flow cytometry data indicated that the proportion of IL-17-producing cells and the CCR6 expression in PB were significantly increased.
Our results provide a potential explanation for involvement of the CCL20-CCR6 system in the trafficking of IL-17-producing cells to degenerated IVD tissues. Additionally, our results explain the contribution of Th17 associated cytokines to the development of degenerated discs via the up-regulation of CCL20 secretion from NP cells, which forms a positive chemotactic feedback loop.
Background and Aims
Preliminary field observations in 2001 and 2002 suggested that Kingdonia uniflora (Circaeasteraceae, Ranunculales) exhibits heterodichogamy, an unusual kind of reproductive heteromorphy, hitherto unreported in Ranunculales and known from only one other genus in basal eudicots.
During several subsequent years flowers were observed in the field. Flowers were fixed in FAA and studied with microtome sections series and with the scanning electron microscope.
The flowers proved to be heterodichogamous, with protandrous and protogynous morphs, which have a 1 : 1 ratio. Both morphs equally set fruit. Each year a single flower is formed at the tip of a rhizome or more rarely two flowers. The flowers are already open when they appear at the soil surface, before they are receptive and before pollen is dispersed. In both floral morphs the styles elongate early and the stigmas are positioned above the anthers before anthesis begins. In protogynous flowers the stigmas become receptive in this position; later the styles become reflexed and then the anthers dehisce. In contrast, in protandrous flowers the stamen filaments elongate during early anthesis such that the dehiscing anthers come to lie above the (still unreceptive) stigmas; after dehiscence of all anthers in a flower the styles begin to elongate and become receptive.
This is the first record of heterodichogamy in a representative of Ranunculales, in an herbaceous eudicot, and in a plant with uniflorous ramets. The occurrence of heterodichogamy in Kingdonia in which clonal reproduction appears to be dominant might be an adaptation to avoid mating between the ramets from a common mother individual (genet).
Kingdonia; Circaeasteraceae; Ranunculales; heterodichogamy; reproductive heteromorphy
Atrial fibrosis, as a hallmark of atrial structure remodeling, plays an important role in maintenance of chronic atrial fibrillation, but interrelationship of atrial fibrosis and atrial fibrillation is uncertain. Label-free proteomics can implement high throughput screening for finding and analyzing pivotal proteins related to the disease.. Therefore, we used label-free proteomics to explore and analyze differentially proteins in chronic atrial fibrillation patients with mitral valve disease.
Left and right atrial appendages obtained from patients with mitral valve disease were both in chronic atrial fibrillation (CAF, AF≥6 months, n = 6) and in sinus rhythm (SR, n = 6). One part of the sample was used for histological analysis and fibrosis quantification; other part were analyzed by label-free proteomic combining liquid chromatography with mass spectrometry (LC-MS), we utilized bioinformatics analysis to identify differential proteins.
Degree of atrial fibrosis was higher in CAF patients than that of SR patients. 223 differential proteins were detected between two groups. These proteins mainly had vital functions such as cell proliferation, stress response, focal adhesion apoptosis. We evaluated that serine/threonine protein kinase N2 (PKN2), dermatopontin(DP), S100 calcium binding protein B(S100B), protein tyrosine kinase 2(PTK2) and discoidin domain receptor tyrosine kinase 2(DDR2) played important roles in fibrotic process related to atrial fibrillation.
The study presented differential proteins responsible for atrial fibrosis in chronic atrial fibrillation patients through label-free proteomic analysis. We assessed some vital proteins including their characters and roles. These findings may open up new realm for mechanism research of atrial fibrillation.
Membranous nephropathy (MN) is a leading cause of nephrotic syndrome in adults and a significant cause of end-stage renal disease, yet current therapies are non-specific, toxic, and often ineffective. The development of novel targeted therapies requires a detailed understanding of the pathogenic mechanisms, but progress is hampered by the lack of a robust mouse model of disease. We report that DBA/1 mice as well as congenic FcγRIII−/− and FcRγ−/− mice immunized with a fragment of α3(IV) collagen developed massive albuminuria and nephrotic syndrome, due to subepithelial deposits of mouse IgG and C3 with corresponding basement membrane reaction and podocyte foot process effacement. The clinical presentation and histopathologic findings were characteristic of MN. Even though immunized mice produced genuine anti-α3NC1 autoAbs which bound to kidney and lung basement membranes, neither crescentic glomerulonephritis nor alveolitis ensued, likely due to the predominance of mIgG1 over mIgG2a and mIgG2b autoAbs. The ablation of activating IgG Fc receptors did not ameliorate injury, implicating subepithelial deposition of immune complexes and consequent complement activation as a major effector pathway. We have thus established an active model of murine MN. This model, leveraged by the availability of genetically engineered mice and mouse-specific reagents, will be instrumental for studying the pathogenesis of MN and for evaluating the efficacy of novel experimental therapies.
autoimmune; autoantibody; mouse model; glomerulonephritis; subepithelial immune complexes; podocytes
The Phosphate transporter 1 (PHT1) gene family has crucial roles in phosphate uptake, translocation, remobilization, and optimization of metabolic processes using of Pi. Gene duplications expand the size of gene families, and subfunctionalization of paralog gene pairs is a predominant tendency after gene duplications. To date, experimental evidence for the evolutionary relationships among different paralog gene pairs of a given gene family in soybean is limited.
All potential Phosphate transporter 1 genes in Glycine max L. (GmPHT1) were systematically analyzed using both bioinformatics and experimentation. The soybean PHT1 genes originated from four distinct ancestors prior to the Gamma WGT and formed 7 paralog gene pairs and a singleton gene. Six of the paralog gene pairs underwent subfunctionalization, and while GmPHT1;4 paralog gene experienced pseudogenization. Examination of long-term evolutionary changes, six GmPHT1 paralog gene pairs diverged at multiple levels, in aspects of spatio-temporal expression patterns and/or quanta, phosphates affinity properties, subcellular localization, and responses to phosphorus stress.
These characterized divergences occurred in tissue- and/or development-specific modes, or conditional modes. Moreover, they have synergistically shaped the evolutionary rate of GmPHT1 family, as well as maintained phosphorus homeostasis at cells and in the whole plant.
Phosphate transporter 1; Gene duplication; Gene divergence; Phosphorus homeostasis; Evolution; Glycine max L.
Elevated plasma homocysteine (Hcy) is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. While Hcy has been shown to promote endothelial dysfunction by decreasing the bioavailability of nitric oxide and increasing oxidative stress in the vasculature, the effects of Hcy on cardiomyocytes remain less understood. In this study we explored the effects of hyperhomocysteinemia (HHcy) on myocardial function ex vivo and examined the direct effects of Hcy on cardiomyocyte function and survival in vitro. Studies with isolated hearts from wild type and HHcy mice (heterozygous cystathionine-beta synthase deficient mice) demonstrated that HHcy mouse hearts had more severely impaired cardiac relaxation and contractile function and increased cell death following ischemia reperfusion (I/R). In isolated cultured adult rat ventricular myocytes, exposure to Hcy for 24 hours impaired cardiomyocyte contractility in a concentration-dependent manner, and promoted apoptosis as revealed by terminal dUTP nick-end labeling and cleaved caspase-3 immunoblotting. These effects were associated with activation of p38 MAPK, decreased expression of thioredoxin (TRX) protein, and increased production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Inhibition of p38 MAPK by the selective inhibitor SB203580 (5 µM) prevented all of these Hcy-induced changes. Furthermore, adenovirus-mediated overexpression of TRX in cardiomyocytes significantly attenuated Hcy-induced ROS generation, apoptosis, and impairment of myocyte contractility. Thus, Hcy may increase the risk for CVD not only by causing endothelial dysfunction, but also by directly exerting detrimental effects on cardiomyocytes.
homocysteine; hyperhomocysteinemia; cardiomyocytes; contractility; apoptosis; antioxidant; ischemia reperfusion injury; oxidative stress
Vitexicarpin (VIT) isolated from the fruits of Vitex rotundifolia has shown antitumor, anti-inflammatory, and immunoregulatory properties. This work is designed to evaluate the antiangiogenic effects of VIT and address the underlying action mechanism of VIT by a network pharmacology approach. The results validated that VIT can act as a novel angiogenesis inhibitor. Firstly, VIT can exert good antiangiogenic effects by inhibiting vascular-endothelial-growth-factor- (VEGF-) induced endothelial cell proliferation, migration, and capillary-like tube formation on matrigel in a dose-dependent manner. Secondly, VIT was also shown to have an antiangiogenic mechanism through inhibition of cell cycle progression and induction of apoptosis. Thirdly, VIT inhibited chorioallantoic membrane angiogenesis as well as tumor angiogenesis in an allograft mouse tumor model. We further addressed VIT's molecular mechanism of antiangiogenic actions using one of our network pharmacology methods named drugCIPHER. Then, we tested some key molecules in the VEGF pathway targeted by VIT and verified the inhibition effects of VIT on AKT and SRC phosphorylation. Taken together, this work not only identifies VIT as a novel potent angiogenesis inhibitor, but also demonstrates that network pharmacology methods can be an effective and promising approach to make discovery and understand the action mechanism of herbal ingredients.
Insulin resistance triggers the developments of diabetes mellitus and atherosclerosis. Tribbles homolog 3 (TRIB3) is involved in insulin resistance. We aimed to investigate whether TRIB3 is implicated in diabetic atherosclerosis. Sixty 3-week-old apolipoprotein E (ApoE−/−)/LDR receptor (LDLR−/−) mice were randomly divided into chow and diabetes groups. Diabetes was induced by a high-fat and high-sugar diet combined with low-dose streptozotocin. Mice in both groups were randomly divided into vehicle and TRIB3-silencing groups. After transfection, all mice were killed to evaluate the effects of TRIB3 on atherosclerosis. Silence of TRIB3 markedly decreased insulin resistance (P = 0.039) and glucose (P = 0.019), regardless of diabetes. Ultrasonography-measured parameters were similar in both groups, with and without silence of TRIB3. However, silence of TRIB3 decreased the aortic atherosclerotic burden (P = 1 × 10−13). Further study showed that in brachiocephalic lesions, fibrous cap thickness, cap-to-core ratio, collagen content, and the number of smooth muscle cells were significantly increased (P < 0.01 for all) by silence of TRIB3, whereas lipid and macrophage contents remained unaltered, with the vulnerability index significantly reduced. Moreover, the numbers of apoptotic cells and macrophages in brachiocephalic lesions were both significantly decreased (P < 0.01 for both). Macrophage migration was decreased (P = 4 × 10−4) by knocking down TRIB3, whereas adhesion and phagocytosis were increased (P < 0.05 for both). Silence of TRIB3 would diminish atherosclerotic burden and increase the plaque stability in diabetic mice.