Reduced-intensity (RIT) conditioning regimens are gaining increased attention as a result of their advantages and efficacy. However, no data are available regarding whether these regimens improve patient quality of life (QoL). In our study, health-related QoL (HRQoL) was retrospectively assessed in 111 patients with hematological malignancies. Analysis of the Quality of Life Questionnaire indicated that 35 of the RIT patients were able to perform their normal work and returned to their baseline levels of function 2 to 3 months after transplantation. In the myeloablative (MA) group, only 24 patients were able to resume work, and these patients returned to their baseline levels of function 6 to 8 months after transplantation (68.6% vs. 40.0%, P = 0.004). Grade III–IV organ toxicity occurred in 20% of the RIT patients and in 52% of the MA patients (P = 0.001), and the cumulative incidences of grades III–IV acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) were 13.7% and 35.0% in RIT and MA patients, respectively (P = 0.015). In conclusion, the RIT conditioning regimens were well tolerated by the patients, with a low incidence of transplant-related mortality (TRM) and serious acute GVHD. In addition, these regimens minimized procedure-related toxicity, improved QoL and did not influence lymphocyte reconstitution; however, OS was similar for both regimens because the relapse rate was relatively increased in the RIT groups.
To compare the effects of transcatheter arterial chemoembolization (TACE) with transcatheter arterial embolization (TAE) on liver function, hepatic damage, and hepatic fibrogenesis in a rabbit tumor model.
Materials and Methods
Thirty-nine New Zealand white rabbits implanted with VX2 tumors in the left liver lobes were randomly divided into three groups: TAE, TACE, and control group. In the TAE group (n = 15), polyvinyl alcohol particles (PVAs) were used for left hepatic artery embolization. In the TACE group (n = 15), the tumors were treated with left hepatic arterial infusions of a suspension of 10-hydroxycamptothecin and lipiodol, followed by embolization with PVAs. In the control group (n = 9), the animals received sham treatment with distilled water. Serum and liver samples were collected at 6 hours, 3 days and 7 days after treatment. Liver damage was measured using a liver function test and histological analyses. Liver fibrogenesis and hepatic stellate cell (HSC) activation were evaluated using Sirius Red and anti-alpha-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) immunohistochemical stains.
TACE caused liver injury with greater increases in serum alanine aminotransferase and aspartate aminotransferase levels on day 3 (P<0.05). Histological analyses revealed increased hepatic necrosis in adjacent non-tumorous liver tissue from day 3 compared to the TAE group (Suzuki score of 2.33±1.29 versus 1.13±1.18, P = 0.001). HSC activation and proliferation were significantly increased in the TACE group compared to the control group at 3 and 7 days after treatment (0.074±0.014 vs. 0.010±0.006, and 0.088±0.023 vs. 0.017±0.009, P<0.05). Sirius Red staining demonstrated a statistically significant increase in collagen deposition in the livers in the TACE group 7 days after embolization compared to the control group (0.118±0.012 vs. 0.060±0.017, P = 0.05).
The results of this animal study revealed that TACE induced prominent hepatocellular damage and hepatic fibrogenesis, which compromised liver function and may be responsible for chronic liver decompensation.
Polymeric immunoglobulin receptor (pIgR) expression is downregulated in lung cancer, but its implications in lung tumourigenesis remain unknown. We hypothesised that loss of pIgR expression occurs early, and is associated with cell proliferation and poor prognosis.
pIgR expression was evaluated by immunohistochemistry in airways of patients with normal mucosa, pre-invasive lesions and invasive lesions, and correlated with clinical outcomes. 16-HBE and A549 cells stably transfected with pIgR were tested for proliferation, apoptosis and cell cycle progression.
Immunostaining was strong in normal epithelium, but severely reduced in pre-invasive lesions and most lung cancers. Persistent expression was associated with younger age and adenocarcinoma subtype but not survival. pIgR overexpression significantly reduced A549 and 16-HBE proliferation. Growth inhibition was not due to cell cycle arrest, increased apoptosis or endoplasmic reticulum stress, but we observed altered expression of genes encoding for membrane proteins, including NOTCH3. Interestingly, NOTCH3 expression was inversely correlated with pIgR expression in cell lines and tissues.
pIgR expression was lost in most lung cancers and pre-invasive bronchial lesions, suggesting that pIgR downregulation is an early event in lung tumourigenesis. pIgR overexpression in A549 and 16-HBE cells inhibited proliferation. Future investigations are required to determine the mechanisms by which pIgR contributes to cell proliferation.
Differentiation; lung adenocarcinoma; lung pre-invasive lesions; polymeric immunoglobulin receptor; proliferation
Although only a subset of smokers develop lung cancer, we cannot determine which smokers are at highest risk for cancer development, nor do we know the signaling pathways altered early in the process of tumorigenesis in these individuals. On the basis of the concept that cigarette smoke creates a molecular field of injury throughout the respiratory tract, this study explores oncogenic pathway deregulation in cytologically normal proximal airway epithelial cells of smokers at risk for lung cancer. We observed a significant increase in a genomic signature of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) pathway activation in the cytologically normal bronchial airway of smokers with lung cancer and smokers with dysplastic lesions, suggesting that PI3K is activated in the proximal airway before tumorigenesis. Further, PI3K activity is decreased in the airway of high-risk smokers who had significant regression of dysplasia after treatment with the chemopreventive agent myo-inositol, and myo-inositol inhibits the PI3K pathway in vitro. These results suggest that deregulation of the PI3K pathway in the bronchial airway epithelium of smokers is an early, measurable, and reversible event in the development of lung cancer and that genomic profiling of these relatively accessible airway cells may enable personalized approaches to chemoprevention and therapy. Our work further suggests that additional lung cancer chemoprevention trials either targeting the PI3K pathway or measuring airway PI3K activation as an intermediate endpoint are warranted.
Establishment of a rapid, highly specific, and accurate method for diagnosis of Toxoplasma gondii infection is essential to control and prevent zoonotic toxoplasmosis. In this study, a novel diagnostic strategy using magnetic bead-based serum peptide profiling by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) was developed. The serum peptides (samples I, II, and III) from T. gondii RH strain-infected mice at days 3, 6, and 9 post-infection (p.i.), and healthy mice were enriched by the optimized magnetic bead-based hydrophobic interaction (MB-HIC8). The mass spectrograms were acquired by MALDI-TOF MS, and analyzed by ClinProTools bioinformatics software from Bruker Daltonics. The diagnostic models from T. gondii RH-infected serum peptide profiling of samples I, II, and III were produced by genetic algorithms, and verified by cross-validation. The sample II model could correctly recognize T. gondii RH strain infection in mice at days 3, 6, and 9 p.i. with a sensitivity of 91.1% and a specificity of 96.7%., and also detect T. gondii ME49 strain-infected serum samples at days 3, 6, 9, and 12 p.i. with a sensitivity of 91.7%. The results of the present study suggest that serum peptide profiling by MALDI-TOF MS is a novel potential tool for the clinical diagnosis of acute T. gondii infection.
MALDI-TOF MS; Mice; Serum peptide profiling; Toxoplasmosis
Although several studies have demonstrated good results with open reduction and internal fixation of intercondylar fractures of the distal humerus, few have specifically addressed the results of such surgical fixation in young adults. The purpose of this study was to compare the clinical outcomes in patients with intercondylar fractures of the distal humerus treated using two different double-plating methods. Twenty-five patients with distal humeral fractures classified as type C according to the Association for Osteosynthesis/Association for the Study of Internal Fixation (AO/ASIF) classification system, who were admitted to the Second Hospital Affiliated to Anhui Medical University (Hefei, China) from October 2008 to October 2011, were included in the study. The patients were treated with two different double-plate fixation and olecranon osteotomy methods. Thirteen patients were treated by perpendicular plating (group I) and twelve patients by Y-shaped double-plating in the coronal plane (group II). All the patients were followed up for 12–38 months, with an average of 19.2±7.1 months in group I and 18.3±4.0 months in group II. All the osteotomies and fractures had healed by the final follow-up. Complications developed in 4 patients in group I and 3 patients in group II. According to the Mayo Elbow Performance Scores (MEPS), 84.6% of patients in group I and 83.3% in group II had excellent or good scores. No significant differences were identified between the clinical outcomes of the two plating methods. The olecranon osteotomy approach with double-plate fixation is a good choice for the surgical treatment of type C intercondylar fractures in young adult distal humeri. The two plating methods provide solid fixation, permit early rehabilitation and result in satisfactory clinical outcomes.
intercondylar fracture; distal humerus; double plate; internal fixation
The objective of this study was to examine the effect of genetic variants in fat mass and obesity associated (FTO) gene on metabolic syndrome (MetS). A systematic literature search was performed and random-effects meta-analysis was used to evaluate genetic variants in FTO with MetS. A gene-based analysis was conducted to investigate the cumulative effects of genetic polymorphisms in FTO. A total of 18 studies from 13 published papers were included in our analysis. Random-effects meta-analysis yielded an estimated odds ratio of 1.19 (95% CI 1.12–1.27; P = 1.38 × 10−7) for rs9939609, 1.19 (95% CI 1.05–1.35; P = 0.008) for rs8050136, and 1.89 (95% CI 1.20–2.96; P = 0.006) for rs1421085. The gene-based analysis indicated that FTO is strongly associated with MetS (P < 10−5). This association remains after excluding rs9939609, a SNP that was frequently reported to have strong association with obesity and MetS. In this study, we concluded that the FTO gene may play a critical role in leading to MetS. Targeting this gene may provide novel therapeutic strategies for the prevention and treatment of metabolic syndrome.
Metabolic syndrome; FTO; Polymorphism; Meta-analysis; Gene-based analysis
Salvia miltiorrhiza is an important medicinal plant with great economic and medicinal value. The complete chloroplast (cp) genome sequence of Salvia miltiorrhiza, the first sequenced member of the Lamiaceae family, is reported here. The genome is 151,328 bp in length and exhibits a typical quadripartite structure of the large (LSC, 82,695 bp) and small (SSC, 17,555 bp) single-copy regions, separated by a pair of inverted repeats (IRs, 25,539 bp). It contains 114 unique genes, including 80 protein-coding genes, 30 tRNAs and four rRNAs. The genome structure, gene order, GC content and codon usage are similar to the typical angiosperm cp genomes. Four forward, three inverted and seven tandem repeats were detected in the Salvia miltiorrhiza cp genome. Simple sequence repeat (SSR) analysis among the 30 asterid cp genomes revealed that most SSRs are AT-rich, which contribute to the overall AT richness of these cp genomes. Additionally, fewer SSRs are distributed in the protein-coding sequences compared to the non-coding regions, indicating an uneven distribution of SSRs within the cp genomes. Entire cp genome comparison of Salvia miltiorrhiza and three other Lamiales cp genomes showed a high degree of sequence similarity and a relatively high divergence of intergenic spacers. Sequence divergence analysis discovered the ten most divergent and ten most conserved genes as well as their length variation, which will be helpful for phylogenetic studies in asterids. Our analysis also supports that both regional and functional constraints affect gene sequence evolution. Further, phylogenetic analysis demonstrated a sister relationship between Salvia miltiorrhiza and Sesamum indicum. The complete cp genome sequence of Salvia miltiorrhiza reported in this paper will facilitate population, phylogenetic and cp genetic engineering studies of this medicinal plant.
Background: Colorectal carcinogenesis is believed to be a multi-stage process that originates with a localized adenoma, which linearly progresses to an intra-mucosal carcinoma, to an invasive lesion, and finally to metastatic cancer. This progression model is supported by tissue culture and animal model studies, but it is difficult to reconcile with several well-established observations, principally among these are that up to 25% of early stage (Stage I/II), node-negative colorectal cancer (CRC) develop distant metastasis, and that circulating CRC cells are undetectable in peripheral blood samples of up to 50% of patients with confirmed metastasis, but more than 30% of patients with no detectable metastasis exhibit such cells. The mechanism responsible for this diverse behavior is unknown, and there are no effective means to identify patients with pending, or who are at high risk for, developing metastatic CRC.
Novel findings: Our previous studies of human breast and prostate cancer have shown that cancer invasion arises from the convergence of a tissue injury, the innate immune response to that injury, and the presence of tumor stem cells within tumor capsules at the site of the injury. Focal degeneration of a capsule due to age or disease attracts lymphocyte infiltration that degrades the degenerating capsules resulting in the formation of a focal disruption in the capsule, which selectively favors proliferating or “budding” of the underlying tumor stem cells. Our recent studies suggest that lymphocyte infiltration also triggers metastasis by disrupting the intercellular junctions and surface adhesion molecules within the proliferating cell buds causing their dissociation. Then, lymphocytes and tumor cells are conjoined through membrane fusion to form tumor-lymphocyte chimeras (TLCs) that allows the tumor stem cell to avail itself of the lymphocyte's natural ability to migrate and breach cell barriers in order to intravasate and to travel to distant organs. Our most recent studies of human CRC have detected nearly identical focal capsule disruptions, lymphocyte infiltration, budding cells, and the formation of TLCs. Our studies have further shown that age- and type-matched node-positive and -negative CRC have a significantly different morphological and immunohistochemical profile and that the majority of lymphatic ducts with disseminated cells are located within the mucosa adjacent to morphologically normal appearing epithelial structures that express a stem cell-related marker.
New hypothesis: Based on these findings and the growth patterns of budding cells revealed by double immunohistochemistry, we further hypothesize that metastatic spread is an early event of carcinogenesis and that budding cells overlying focal capsule disruptions represent invasion- and metastasis-initiating cells that follow one of four pathways to progress: (1) to undergo extensive in situ proliferation leading to the formation of tumor nests that subsequently invade the submucosa, (2) to migrate with associated lymphocytes functioning as “seeds” to grow in new sites, (3) to migrate and intravasate into pre-existing vascular structures by forming TLCs, or (4) to intravasate into vascular structures that are generated by the budding cells themselves. We also propose that only node-positive cases harbor stem cells with the potential for multi-lineage differentiation and unique surface markers that permit intravasation.
Lymphocyte infiltration; tumor capsule; tumor invasion; tumor metastasis; stem cell.
Background: Our previous studies of human breast and prostate cancer have shown that aberrant immune cell infiltration is associated with focal tumor capsule disruption and tumor cell budding that facilitate invasion and metastasis. Our current study attempted to determine whether aberrant immune cell infiltration would have similar impact on colorectal cancer (CRC).
Materials and Methods: Tissue sections from 100 patients with primary CRC were assessed for the frequencies of focal basement membrane (BM) disruption, muscularis mucosa (MM) fragmentation, and tumor cell dissemination in epithelial structures adjacent and distal to infiltrating lymphoid aggregates using a panel of biomarkers and quantitative digital imaging.
Results: Our study revealed: (1) epithelial structures adjacent to lymphoid follicles or aggregates had a significantly higher (p<0.001) frequency of focally disrupted BM, dissociated epithelial cells in the stroma, disseminated epithelial cells within lymphatic ducts or blood vessels, and fragmented MM than their distal counterparts, (2) a majority of dissociated epithelial cells within the stroma or vascular structures were immediately subjacent to or physically associated with infiltrating immune cells, (3) the junctions of pre-invasive and invasive lesions were almost exclusively located at sites adjacent to lymphoid follicles or aggregates, (4) infiltrating immune cells were preferentially associated with epithelial capsules that show distinct degenerative alterations, and (5) infiltrating immune cells appeared to facilitate tumor stem cell proliferation, budding, and dissemination.
Conclusions: Aberrant immune cell infiltration may have the same destructive impact on the capsule of all epithelium-derived tumors. This, in turn, may selectively favor the proliferation of tumor stem or progenitor cells overlying these focal disruptions. These proliferating epithelial tumor cells subsequently disseminate from the focal disruption leading to tumor invasion and metastasis.
Colorectal cancer; tumor capsule; tumor invasion; metastasis, lymphocyte aggregates.
The presence of duplicates introduced by PCR amplification is a major issue in paired short reads from next-generation sequencing platforms. These duplicates might have a serious impact on research applications, such as scaffolding in whole-genome sequencing and discovering large-scale genome variations, and are usually removed. We present FastUniq as a fast de novo tool for removal of duplicates in paired short reads. FastUniq identifies duplicates by comparing sequences between read pairs and does not require complete genome sequences as prerequisites. FastUniq is capable of simultaneously handling reads with different lengths and results in highly efficient running time, which increases linearly at an average speed of 87 million reads per 10 minutes. FastUniq is freely available at http://sourceforge.net/projects/fastuniq/.
Recent studies have revealed that Mitochondrial Antiviral Signaling (MAVS) protein plays an essential role in the inhibition of viral infection through type I interferon (IFN) pathway. It has been shown that 3C (pro) cysteine protease of coxsackievirus B3 (CVB3) cleaves MAVS to inhibit type I IFNs induction. Other workers also found that MAVS knock-out mice suffered CVB3 susceptibility and severe histopathological change. Accordingly,our experiments were designed to explore the protection of over-expressing MAVS against CVB3 infection and the possible mechanism.
In this study, HeLa cells (transfected with MAVS constructs pre- or post- exposure to CVB3) were used to analyze the function of exogenous MAVS on CVB3 infection. The results revealed that though CVB3 infection induced production of type I IFNs, viral replication and cell death were not effectively inhibited. Similarly, exogenous MAVS increased type I IFNs moderately. Morever, we observed robust production of type I IFNs in CVB3 post-infected HeLa cells thereby successfully inhibiting CVB3 infection, as well formation of cytopathic effect (CPE) and cell death. Finally, introduction of exogenous MAVS into CVB3 pre-infected cells also restricted viral infection efficiently by greatly up-regulating IFNs.
In summary, exogenous MAVS effectively prevents and controls CVB3 infection by modulating and promoting the production of type I IFNs. The IFNs level in MAVS over-expressing cells is still tightly regulated by CVB3 infection. Thus, the factors that up-regulate MAVS might be an alternative prescription in CVB3-related syndromes by enhancing IFNs production.
Mitochondrial antiviral signaling protein; Coxsackievirus B3; Interferon; Antiviral response
Protein biopharmaceuticals, such as monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) are widely used for the prevention and treatment of various diseases. The complex and lengthy upstream and downstream production methods of the antibodies make them susceptible to physical and chemical modifications. Several IgG1 immunoglobulins are used as medical agents for the treatment of colon, breast and head and neck cancers, and at least four to eight isoforms exist in the products. The regulatory agencies understand the complex nature of the antibody molecules and allow the manufactures to set their own specifications for lot release, provided the safety and efficacy of the products are established in animal models prior to clinical trials. During the manufacture of a mAb product, we observed lot-to-lot variability in the isoform content and, although the variability is within the set specifications for lot release, made attempts to gain mechanistic insight by isolating and characterizing the individual isoforms. Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) and liquid chromatography (LC)/mass spectrometry (MS)/MS analyses of the isolated isoforms indicate that this variability is caused by sialic acid content, as well as truncation of C-terminal lysine of the individual isoforms. Sialidase and carboxypeptidase treatment of the product confirm the observations made by MALDI and LC/MS/MS.
IgG1; isoforms; charge heterogeneity; monoclonal antibody; glycosylation; silaic acid
Angiogenesis and invasion are essential processes for solid tumor growth and dissemination. The tumor development process can be dependent on the activation of a series of signaling pathways, including growth factor-activated pathways. MicroRNAs have been shown to be critical for tumorigenesis, but their roles in cancer angiogenesis, invasion and other signaling pathways important for tumor development are still unclear in the context of tumor biology. We investigated the role of microRNA miR-98 in regulating tumor growth, invasion, and angiogenesis using a highly aggressive breast cancer model in vitro and in vitro. We found that the expression of miR-98 inhibited breast cancer cell proliferation, survival, tumor growth, invasion, and angiogenesis. Conversely, inhibition of endogenous miR-98 promoted cell proliferation, survival, tumor growth, invasion, and angiogenesis. It appeared that miR-98 inhibited angiogenesis by modulating endothelial cell activities including cell spreading, cell invasion and tubule formation. Interestingly, miR-98 reduced the expression of ALK4 and MMP11, both of which were potential targets of miR-98. Transfection of an anti-miR-98 construct increased the expression of both targets. We confirmed that mir-98 targeted the 3'-untranslated regions of ALK4 and MMP11. Finally, ALK4- and MMP11-specific siRNAs inhibited breast cancer cell proliferation, survival, and angiogenesis. Rescue experiments with ALK4 and MMP11 constructs reversed the anti-proliferative, anti-invasive and anti-angiogenic effects of miR-98. Our findings define a regulatory role of miR-98 in tumor angiogenesis and invasion through repressed ALK4 and MMP11 expression.
microRNA; miR-98; angiogenesis; tumorigenesis; invasion
The purpose of this paper is to determine the early incidence of disc de- generation adjacent to the vertebral body of osteoporotic fracture treated with percutaneous vertebroplasty or balloon kyphoplasty and whether adjacent disc degeneration is accelerated by this two procedures.
182 patients with painful vertebral compression fractures were treated. A total of 97 patients were enrolled in this prospective study. 97 patients with a mean age of 65.3 years were classified into control group and surgical treatment group of non-random. 35 patients were in contol group and 62 patients who were performed percutaneous vertebroplasty or balloon kyphoplasty in treatment group. X-ray and Magnetic resonance imaging were done at the first and final visit. The grade of disc degeneration above the fractured vertebral was confirmed by evaluation of bony oedema in the fat suppressed sequences and T2-weighted image of magnetic resonance imaging. The height of degenerative disc was measured on X-ray film.
All patients were followed up two years after the first visit and the follow-up rate was 90.7% (88/97). The incidence of degeneration of adjacent disc above the fractured vertebral was 29.0% (9/31) in control group and 52.6% (30/57) in treatment group. It presented a statistically significant difference between two groups about the incidence of adjacent disc degeneration (P = 0.033). The percentage of adjacent disc height reduction in control group was 13.5% and 17.6% in treatment group. Statistically significant difference of VAS score and ODI was not found between the first evaluation postoperatively and the final follow-up in treatment group (P>0.05).
Disc degeneration adjacent to the fractured vertebral is accelerated by VP and BK procedures in the early stage, but clinical outcomes has not been weakened even in the presence of accelerated disc degeneration.
Somatic mutations of U2AF1 gene have recently been identified in myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and acute myeloid leukemia (AML). In this study, we analyzed the frequency and clinical impact of U2AF1 mutations in a cohort of 452 Chinese patients with myeloid neoplasms. Mutations in U2AF1 were found in 2.5% (7/275) of AML and 6.3% (6/96) of MDS patients, but in none of 81 CML. All mutations were heterozygous missense mutations affecting codon S34 or Q157. There was no significant association of U2AF1 mutation with blood parameters, FAB subtypes, karyotypes and other gene mutations in AML. The overall survival (OS) of AML patients with U2AF1 mutation (median 3 months) was shorter than those without mutation (median 7 months) (P = 0.035). No difference in the OS was observed between MDS patients with and without U2AF1 mutations. Our data show that U2AF1 mutation is a recurrent event at a low frequency in AML and MDS.
MicroRNAs (miRNA) are small regulatory RNAs that control gene expression by translational suppression and destabilization of target mRNAs. There is increasing evidence that miRNAs regulate genes associated with fibrosis in organs, such as the heart, kidney, liver, and the lung. In a large-scale screening for miRNAs potentially involved in bleomycin-induced fibrosis, we found expression of miR-29 family members significantly reduced in fibrotic lungs. Analysis of normal lungs showed the presence of miR-29 in subsets of interstitial cells of the alveolar wall, pleura, and at the entrance of the alveolar duct, known sites of pulmonary fibrosis. miR-29 levels inversely correlated with the expression levels of profibrotic target genes and the severity of the fibrosis. To study the impact of miR-29 down-regulation in the lung interstitium, we characterized gene expression profiles of human fetal lung fibroblast IMR-90 cells in which endogenous miR-29 was knocked down. This confirmed the derepression of reported miR-29 targets, including several collagens, but also revealed up-regulation of a large number of previously unrecognized extracellular matrix–associated and remodeling genes. Moreover, we found that miR-29 is suppressed by transforming growth factor (TGF)–β1 in these cells, and that many fibrosis-associated genes up-regulated by TGF-β1 are derepressed by miR-29 knockdown. Interestingly, a comparison of TGF-β1 and miR-29 targets revealed that miR-29 controls an additional subset of fibrosis-related genes, including laminins and integrins, independent of TGF-β1. Together, these strongly suggest a role of miR-29 in the pathogenesis of pulmonary fibrosis. miR-29 may be a potential new therapeutic target for this disease.
miR-29; pulmonary fibrosis; basement membrane; profibrotic genes; TGF-β1
The nucleoside analogues 8-amino-adenosine and 8-chloro-adenosine have been investigated in the context of B-lineage lymphoid malignancies by our laboratories due to the selective cytotoxicity they exhibit toward multiple myeloma (MM), chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), and mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) cell lines and primary cells. Encouraging pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties of 8-chloro-adenosine being documented in an ongoing Phase I trial in CLL provide additional impetus for the study of these promising drugs. In order to foster a deeper understanding of the commonalities between their mechanisms of action and gain insight into specific patient cohorts positioned to achieve maximal benefit from treatment, we devised a novel two-tiered chemoinformatic screen to identify molecular determinants of responsiveness to these compounds. This screen entailed: 1) the elucidation of gene expression patterns highly associated with the anti-tumor activity of 8-chloro-adenosine in the NCI-60 cell line panel, 2) characterization of altered transcript abundances between paired MM and MCL cell lines exhibiting differential susceptibility to 8-amino-adenosine, and 3) integration of the resulting datasets. This approach generated a signature of seven unique genes including G6PD which encodes the rate-determining enzyme of the pentose phosphate pathway (PPP), glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase. Bioinformatic analysis of primary cell gene expression data demonstrated that G6PD is frequently overexpressed in MM and CLL, highlighting the potential clinical implications of this finding. Utilizing the paired sensitive and resistant MM and MCL cell lines as a model system, we go on to demonstrate through loss-of-function and gain-of-function studies that elevated G6PD expression is necessary to maintain resistance to 8-amino- and 8-chloro-adenosine but insufficient to induce de novo resistance in sensitive cells. Taken together, these results indicate that G6PD activity antagonizes the cytotoxicity of 8-substituted adenosine analogues and suggests that administration of these agents to patients with B-cell malignancies exhibiting normal levels of G6PD expression may be particularly efficacious.
Endoscopic submucosal dissection (ESD) is a promising technique for the treatment of large, pre- and early malignant gastrointestinal lesions.
To assess the rates of en bloc resection, incidence of complications, procedure times and therapeutic outcomes of ESD using an insulated-tip diathermic knife; and to investigate predictors of these outcomes based on the final pathological features of biopsy specimens.
One hundred twenty patients with endoscopically suspected gastric epithelial tumours who were treated with ESD from January 2006 to December 2009 were evaluated.
The mean diameter of the gastric epithelial tumours in the present cohort was 1.88 cm. The mean diameter of the resected specimens was 3.33 cm. The en bloc resection rate was 90% (108 of 120). The median length of the operation was 64.6 min. The bleeding and perforation complication rates were 5.0% (six of 120) and 2.5% (three of 120), respectively. Of 10 gastric tumours initially diagnosed as adenocarcinoma on biopsy, four were found to be low-grade dysplasia and six were found to be high-grade dysplasia after resection and final pathological examination. A total of 112 (93.33%) patients underwent curative treatment, eight patients (6.67%) underwent noncurative treatment with ESD, and two patients (1.67%) experienced local recurrence and subsequently underwent surgery.
ESD is a promising local curative treatment option for gastric epithelial tumours, but still carries the risks of bleeding and/or perforation. Differences in the interpretation of histological results among different pathologists and/or between biopsy specimens before ESD and the en bloc tissue specimens after ESD will result in discrepancies.
Endoscopic submucosal dissection; Gastric epithelial tumour; IT knife
Ricin toxin has been regarded as one of the most potent poisons in the plant kingdom, and there is no effective therapeutic countermeasure or licensed vaccine against it. Consequently, early detection of ricin intoxication is necessary. In this study, we took mice as test subjects, and used the technique of Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF/MS) and ClinProt™ microparticle beads to set up an effective detection model with an accuracy of almost 100%. Eighty-two peaks in the mass range 1000–10,000 m/z were detected by ClinProTools software, and five different peaks with m/z of 4982.49, 1333.25, 1537.86, 4285.05 and 2738.88 had the greatest contribution to the accuracy and sensitivity of this model. They may therefore provide biomarkers for ricin intoxication.
ricin; MALDI-TOF-MS; detection model
Somatic mutations of DNMT3A gene have recently been reported in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). We examined the entire coding sequences of DNMT3A gene by high-resolution melting analysis and sequencing in Chinese patients with myeloid malignancies. R882 mutations were found in 12/182 AML and in 4/51 MDS, but not in either 79 chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), or 57 myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs), or 4 chronic monomyelocytic leukemia. No other DNMT3A mutations were detected in all patients. R882 mutations were associated with old age and more frequently present in monoblastic leukemia (M4 and M5, 7/52) compared to other subtypes (5/130). Furthermore, 14/16 (86.6%) R882 mutations were observed in patients with normal karyotypes. The overall survival of mutated MDS patients was shorter than those without mutation (median 9 and 25 months, respectively). We conclude that DNMT3A R882 mutations are recurrent molecular aberrations in AML and MDS, and may be an adverse prognostic event in MDS.
Adenocarcinomas of the lung commonly show an increase in the activity of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt signaling pathway, yet many are resistant to apoptosis induced by the inhibition of PI3K. We hypothesized that Bcl-xL would have a synergistic effect on the apoptotic response induced by inhibition of the PI3K/Akt pathway in lung adenocarcinoma. To test this, we examined the effect of the PI3K inhibitor and LY294002 on lung adenocarcinoma cell lines expressing varying levels of Bcl-xL. We found that cells that overexpress Bcl-xL are resistant LY294002-induced apoptosis, while cells that express little Bcl-xL readily are not. Restoring Bcl-xL expression in cells that express low level of Bcl-xL conferred resistance to apoptosis in response to LY294002. The simultaneous inhibition of the PI3K/Akt pathway by LY294002 or Akt1 siRNA and Bcl-xL function by ABT-737 or Bcl-xL siRNA greatly enhanced the apoptotic response. Moreover, this response was associated with the induction of proapoptotic BH3-only BCL2 family member Bim. Our data suggest that PI3K/Akt and Bcl-xL pathways control cell death in lung adenocarcinoma cells in a synergistic manner. Modulation of Bcl-xL expression may represent one important strategy to optimize the efficacy of therapeutic agents targeting the PI3K/Akt pathway in adenocarcinoma of the lung.
adenocarcinoma; PI3K/Akt pathway; Bcl-xL; apoptosis
Mammalian oocyte maturation and early embryo development processes are Ca2+-dependent. In this study, we used confocal microscopy to investigate the distribution pattern of Ca2+ and its dynamic changes in the processes of bovine oocytes maturation, in vitro fertilization (IVF), parthenogenetic activation (PA) and somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) embryo development. During the germinal vesicle (GV) and GV breakdown stage, Ca2+ was distributed in the cortical ooplasm and throughout the oocytes from the MI to MII stage. In IVF embryos, Ca2+ was distributed in the cortical ooplasm before the formation of the pronucleus. In 4-8 cell embryos and morulas, Ca2+ was present throughout the blastomere. In PA embryos, Ca2+ was distributed throughout the blastomere at 48 h, similar to in the 4-cell and 8-cell phase and the morula. At 6 h after activation, there was almost no distribution of Ca2+ in the SCNT embryos. However, Ca2+ was distributed in the donor nucleus at 10 h and it was distributed throughout the blastomere in the 2-8 cell embryos. In this study, Ca2+ showed significant fluctuations with regularity of IVF and SCNT groups, but PA did not. Systematic investigation of the Ca2+ location and distribution changes during oocyte maturation and early embryo development processes should facilitate a better understanding of the mechanisms involved in oocyte maturation, reconstructed embryo activation and development, ultimately improving the reconstructed embryo development rate.
bovine; concentration of Ca2+; distribution of Ca2+; embryos; oocytes
A nested Kirkpatrick–Baez mirror pair has been designed, fabricated and tested for achromatic nanofocusing synchrotron hard X-rays. The prototype system achieved a FWHM focal spot of about 150 nm in both horizontal and vertical directions.
The first test of nanoscale-focusing Kirkpatrick–Baez (KB) mirrors in the nested (or Montel) configuration used at a hard X-ray synchrotron beamline is reported. The two mirrors are both 40 mm long and coated with Pt to produce a focal length of 60 mm at 3 mrad incident angle, and collect up to a 120 µm by 120 µm incident X-ray beam with maximum angular acceptance of 2 mrad and a broad bandwidth of energies up to 30 keV. In an initial test a focal spot of about 150 nm in both horizontal and vertical directions was achieved with either polychromatic or monochromatic beam. The nested mirror geometry, with two mirrors mounted side-by-side and perpendicular to each other, is significantly more compact and provides higher demagnification than the traditional sequential KB mirror arrangement. Ultimately, nested mirrors can focus larger divergence to improve the diffraction limit of achromatic optics. A major challenge with the fabrication of the required mirrors is the need for near-perfect mirror surfaces near the edge of at least one of the mirrors. Special polishing procedures and surface profile coating were used to preserve the mirror surface quality at the reflecting edge. Further developments aimed at achieving diffraction-limited focusing below 50 nm are underway.
hard X-ray nanofocusing; achromatic; nested Kirkpatrick–Baez; Montel
Treatment of plants with HrpNEa, a protein of harpin group produced by Gram-negative plant pathogenic bacteria, induces plant resistance to insect herbivores, including the green peach aphid Myzus persicae, a generalist phloem-feeding insect. Under attacks by phloem-feeding insects, plants defend themselves using the phloem-based defense mechanism, which is supposed to involve the phloem protein 2 (PP2), one of the most abundant proteins in the phloem sap. The purpose of this study was to obtain genetic evidence for the function of the Arabidopsis thaliana (Arabidopsis) PP2-encoding gene AtPP2-A1 in resistance to M. persicae when the plant was treated with HrpNEa and after the plant was transformed with AtPP2-A1.
The electrical penetration graph technique was used to visualize the phloem-feeding activities of apterous agamic M. persicae females on leaves of Arabidopsis plants treated with HrpNEa and an inactive protein control, respectively. A repression of phloem feeding was induced by HrpNEa in wild-type (WT) Arabidopsis but not in atpp2-a1/E/142, the plant mutant that had a defect in the AtPP2-A1 gene, the most HrpNEa-responsive of 30 AtPP2 genes. In WT rather than atpp2-a1/E/142, the deterrent effect of HrpNEa treatment on the phloem-feeding activity accompanied an enhancement of AtPP2-A1 expression. In PP2OETAt (AtPP2-A1-overexpression transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana) plants, abundant amounts of the AtPP2-A1 gene transcript were detected in different organs, including leaves, stems, calyces, and petals. All these organs had a deterrent effect on the phloem-feeding activity compared with the same organs of the transgenic control plant. When a large-scale aphid population was monitored for 24 hours, there was a significant decrease in the number of aphids that colonized leaves of HrpNEa-treated WT and PP2OETAt plants, respectively, compared with control plants.
The repression in phloem-feeding activities of M. persicae as a result of AtPP2-A1 overexpression, and as a deterrent effect of HrpNEa treatment in WT Arabidopsis rather than the atpp2-a1/E/142 mutant suggest that AtPP2-A1 plays a role in plant resistance to the insect, particularly at the phloem-feeding stage. The accompanied change of aphid population in leaf colonies suggests that the function of AtPP2-A1 is related to colonization of the plant.