MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNA molecules, whose primary function is to regulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional/translational levels. MiRNAs play crucial roles in normal biological processes and are commonly dys-regulated in human diseases. Stem cells are regarded as the “mother” cells of all types of differentiated cells that comprise tissues and organs of the body. A novel hypothesis proposes that tumors are composed of heterogeneous cells derived from cancer stem cells, which have self-renewal and differentiation capabilities similar to those of normal stem cells. Cancer stem cells have been isolated and characterized from various tumors. Given recent studies supporting the critical regulatory roles of miRNAs in the self-renewal and differentiation of cancer stem cells, better understanding the functions of miRNAs will provide invaluable insights into the prevention of tumorigenesis and tumor progression. In this review, we will summarize the research progress in the study of miRNAs involved in the self-renewal and differentiation of cancer stem cells.
cancer; stem cells; miRNAs; tumorigenesis; tumor progression; self-renewal; differentiation
One of the strategies to improve the outcome of anti-erbB2-mediated immunotherapy is to combine anti-erbB2 antibodies with T-cell-based adoptive immunotherapy, which can be achieved by expressing anti-erbB2 mAb on the surface of T cells. A single-chain variable fragment (scFv) from an anti-erbB2 mAb has been expressed on T cell surface to bind to erbB2-positive cells, and CD3ζ has been expressed as a fusion partner at C terminus of this scFv to transduce signals. T cells grafted with this chimeric scFv/CD3ζ were able to specifically attack target tumor cells with no MHC/Ag restriction. To test the effects of CD28 signal on cellular activation and antitumor effectiveness of chimeric scFv/CD3ζ-modified T cells, we constructed a recombinant anti-erbB2 scFv/Fc/CD28/CD3ζ gene in a retroviral vector. T cells expressing anti-erbB2 scFv/Fc/CD28/CD3ζ specifically lyzed erbB2-positive target tumor cells and secreted not only interferon-γ (IFN-γ) but also IL-2 after binding to their target cells. Our data indicate that CD3 and CD28 signaling can be delivered in one molecule, which is sufficient for complete T cell activation without exogenous B7/CD28 co-stimulation.
erbB2; gene therapy; immunotherapy; recombinant gene; scFv; T cell; tumor
Phosphopantetheinyl transferases (PPTases) are essential to the activities of type I/II polyketide synthases (PKSs) and nonribosomal peptide synthetases (NRPSs) through converting acyl carrier proteins (ACPs) in PKSs and peptidyl carrier proteins (PCPs) in NRPSs from inactive apo-forms into active holo-forms, leading to biosynthesis of polyketides and nonribosomal peptides. The industrial natamycin (NTM) producer, Streptomyces chattanoogensis L10, contains two PPTases (SchPPT and SchACPS) and five PKSs. Biochemical characterization of these two PPTases shows that SchPPT catalyzes the phosphopantetheinylation of ACPs in both type I PKSs and type II PKSs, SchACPS catalyzes the phosphopantetheinylation of ACPs in type II PKSs and fatty acid synthases (FASs), and the specificity of SchPPT is possibly controlled by its C terminus. Inactivation of SchPPT in S. chattanoogensis L10 abolished production of NTM but not the spore pigment, while overexpression of the SchPPT gene not only increased NTM production by about 40% but also accelerated productions of both NTM and the spore pigment. Thus, we elucidated a comprehensive phosphopantetheinylation network of PKSs and improved polyketide production by engineering the cognate PPTase in bacteria.
Extracts from Potentilla species have been applied in traditional medicine and exhibit antioxidant, hypoglycemic, anti-inflammatory, antitumor and anti-ulcerogenic properties, but little has been known about the diversity of phytochemistry and pharmacology on this genus. This study investigated and compared the phytochemical profiles, antioxidant and antimicrobial activities of leaf extracts from three Potentilla species (Potentilla fruticosa, Potentilla glabra and Potentilla parvifolia) in order to discover new resources for lead structures and pharmaceutical products.
Chemical composition and content of six phenolic compounds were evaluated and determined by RP-HPLC; Total phenolic and total flavonoid content were determined using Folin-Ciocalteau colourimetric method and sodium borohydride/chloranil-based method (SBC); Antioxidant activities were determined using DPPH, ABTS and FRAP assays; Antimicrobial properties were investigated by agar dilution and mycelial growth rate method.
The results showed hyperoside was the predominant phenolic compound in three Potentilla species by RP-HPLC assay, with the content of 8.86 (P. fruticosa), 2.56 (P. glabra) and 2.68 mg/g (P. parvifolia), respectively. The highest content of total identified phenolic compounds (hyperoside, (+)-catechin, caffeic acid, ferulic acid, rutin and ellagic acid) was observed in P. parvifolia (14.17 mg/g), follow by P. fruticosa (10.01 mg/g) and P. glabra (7.01 mg/g). P. fruticosa possessed the highest content of total phenolic (84.93 ± 0.50 mmol gallic acid equivalent/100 g) and total flavonoid (84.14 ± 0.03 mmol quercetin equivalent/100 g), which were in good correlation with its significant DPPHIC50 (16.87 μg/mL), ABTS (2763.48 μmol Trolox equivalent/g) and FRAP (1398.70 μmol Trolox equivalent/g) capacities. Furthermore, the effective methodology to distinguish the different species of Potentilla was also established by chromatographic fingerprint analysis for the first time. The results of antimicrobial activities showed P. fruticosa exhibited the strongest inhibition aganist Gram-positive bacteria, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Candida albicans with MIC values of 0.78–6.25 mg/mL. P. parvifolia possessed antibacterial and antifungal activities against all the microorganisms tested, with EC50 and MIC values of 20.52–47.02 mg/mL and 0.78–50 mg/mL, respectively.
These results indicated that leaf extracts from three Potentilla species could become useful supplement for pharmaceutical products as a new antioxidant and antimicrobial agents.
Potentilla spp; Phytochemicals; Antioxidant activity; Antimicrobial activity; RP-HPLC
Methylphenidate (MPH) has long been used to treat attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD); however, its cellular mechanisms of action and potential effects on prefrontal cortical circuitry are not well understood, particularly in the developing brain system. A clinically-relevant dose range for rodents has been established in the adult animal; however, how this range will translate to juvenile animals has not been established.
Juvenile (P15) and adult (P90) SD rats were treated with MPH or saline. Whole-cell patch clamp recording was used to examine the neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission in pyramidal neurons of prefrontal cortex. Recovery from MPH treatment was also examined at 1, 5 and 10 weeks following drug cessation.
1 mg/kg i.p. dose of MPH, either single dose or chronic treatment (well within the accepted therapeutic range for adults) produced significant depressive effects on pyramidal neurons by increasing hyperpolarization-activated currents in juvenile rat prefrontal cortex, while exerting excitatory effects in adult rats. Minimum clinically-relevant doses (0.03 to 0.3 mg/kg) also produced depressive effects in juvenile rats, in a linear dose-dependent manner. Function recovered within 1 week from chronic 1 mg/kg treatment, chronic treatment with 3 and 9 mg/kg resulted in depression of prefrontal neurons lasting 10 weeks and beyond.
These results suggest that the juvenile prefrontal cortex is supersensitive to methylphenidate, and the accepted therapeutic range for adults is an overshoot. Juvenile treatment with MPH may result in long-lasting, potentially permanent, changes to excitatory neuron function in the prefrontal cortex of juvenile rats.
methylphenidate; psychostimulant; ADHD; prefrontal cortex; development; neuronal excitability
Given the emerging roles of miRNAs as potential posttranscriptional/posttranslational regulators of the steroidogenic process in adrenocortical and gonadal cells, we sought to determine miRNA profiles in rat adrenals from animals treated with vehicle, ACTH, 17α-E2 or dexamethasone. Key observations were also confirmed using hormone (Bt2cAMP)-treated mouse Leydig tumor cells, MLTC-1, and primary rat ovarian granulosa cells.
RNA was extracted from rat adrenal glands and miRNA profiles were established using microarray and confirmed with qRT-PCR. The expression of some of the hormone-sensitive miRNAs was quantified in MLTC-1 and granulosa cells after stimulation with Bt2cAMP. Targets of hormonally altered miRNAs were explored by qRT-PCR and Western blotting in adrenals and granulosa cells.
Adrenals from ACTH, 17α-E2 and dexamethasone treated rats exhibited miRNA profiles distinct from control animals. ACTH up-regulated the expression of miRNA-212, miRNA-182, miRNA-183, miRNA-132, and miRNA-96 and down-regulated the levels of miRNA-466b, miRNA-214, miRNA-503, and miRNA-27a. The levels of miR-212, miRNA-183, miRNA-182, miRNA-132, miRNA-370, miRNA-377, and miRNA-96 were up-regulated, whereas miR-125b, miRNA-200b, miR-122, miRNA-466b, miR-138, miRNA-214, miRNA-503 and miRNA27a were down-regulated in response to 17α-E2 treatment. Dexamethasone treatment decreased miRNA-200b, miR-122, miR-19a, miRNA-466b and miRNA27a levels, but increased miRNA-183 levels. Several adrenal miRNAs are subject to regulation by more than one hormone. Significant cAMP-induced changes in certain miRNAs were also noted in MLTC-1 and granulosa cells. Some of the hormone-induced miRNAs in steroidogenic cells were predicted to target proteins involved in lipid metabolism/steroidogenesis. We also obtained evidence that miR-132 and miRNA-214 inhibit the expression of SREBP-1c and LDLR, respectively.
Our results demonstrate that expression of a number of miRNAs in steroidogenic cells of the testis, ovary and adrenal glands is subject to hormonal regulation and that miRNAs and their regulation by specific hormones are likely to play a key role in posttranscriptional/posttranslational regulation of steroidogenesis.
The ginseng family (Araliaceae) includes a number of economically important plant species. Previously phylogenetic studies circumscribed three major clades within the core ginseng plant family, yet the internal relationships of each major group have been poorly resolved perhaps due to rapid radiation of these lineages. Recent studies have shown that phyogenomics based on chloroplast genomes provides a viable way to resolve complex relationships.
We report the complete nucleotide sequences of five Araliaceae chloroplast genomes using next-generation sequencing technology. The five chloroplast genomes are 156,333–156,459 bp in length including a pair of inverted repeats (25,551–26,108 bp) separated by the large single-copy (86,028–86,566 bp) and small single-copy (18,021–19,117 bp) regions. Each chloroplast genome contains the same 114 unique genes consisting of 30 transfer RNA genes, four ribosomal RNA genes, and 80 protein coding genes. Gene size, content, and order, AT content, and IR/SC boundary structure are similar among all Araliaceae chloroplast genomes. A total of 140 repeats were identified in the five chloroplast genomes with palindromic repeat as the most common type. Phylogenomic analyses using parsimony, likelihood, and Bayesian inference based on the complete chloroplast genomes strongly supported the monophyly of the Asian Palmate group and the Aralia-Panax group. Furthermore, the relationships among the sampled taxa within the Asian Palmate group were well resolved. Twenty-six DNA markers with the percentage of variable sites higher than 5% were identified, which may be useful for phylogenetic studies of Araliaceae.
The chloroplast genomes of Araliaceae are highly conserved in all aspects of genome features. The large-scale phylogenomic data based on the complete chloroplast DNA sequences is shown to be effective for the phylogenetic reconstruction of Araliaceae.
Phytoplasmas are plant pathogenic bacteria that have no cell wall and are responsible for major crop losses throughout the world. Phytoplasma-infected plants show a variety of symptoms and the mechanisms they use to physiologically alter the host plants are of considerable interest, but poorly understood. In this study we undertook a detailed analysis of Paulownia infected by Paulownia witches’-broom (PaWB) Phytoplasma using high-throughput mRNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) and digital gene expression (DGE). RNA-Seq analysis identified 74,831 unigenes, which were subsequently used as reference sequences for DGE analysis of diseased and healthy Paulownia in field grown and tissue cultured plants. Our study revealed that dramatic changes occurred in the gene expression profile of Paulownia after PaWB Phytoplasma infection. Genes encoding key enzymes in cytokinin biosynthesis, such as isopentenyl diphosphate isomerase and isopentenyltransferase, were significantly induced in the infected Paulownia. Genes involved in cell wall biosynthesis and degradation were largely up-regulated and genes related to photosynthesis were down-regulated after PaWB Phytoplasma infection. Our systematic analysis provides comprehensive transcriptomic data about plants infected by Phytoplasma. This information will help further our understanding of the detailed interaction mechanisms between plants and Phytoplasma.
Two new peptides, MCh-1 and MCh-2, along with three known trypsin inhibitors (MCTI-I, MCTI-II and MCTI-III), were isolated from the seeds of the tropical vine Momordica charantia. The sequences of the peptides were determined using mass spectrometry and NMR spectroscopy. Using a strategy involving partial reduction and stepwise alkylation of the peptides, followed by enzymatic digestion and tandem mass spectrometry sequencing, the disulfide connectivity of MCh-1 was elucidated to be CysI-CysIV, CysII-CysV and CysIII-CysVI. The three-dimensional structures of MCh-1 and MCh-2 were determined using NMR spectroscopy and found to contain the inhibitor cystine knot (ICK) motif. The sequences of the novel peptides differ significantly from peptides previously isolated from this plant. Therefore, this study expands the known peptide diversity in M. charantia and the range of sequences that can be accommodated by the ICK motif. Furthermore, we show that a stable two-disulfide intermediate is involved in the oxidative folding of MCh-1. This disulfide intermediate is structurally homologous to the proposed ancestral fold of ICK peptides, and provides a possible pathway for the evolution of this structural motif, which is highly prevalent in nature.
AIM: To investigate cytokeratin 8 (CK8) overexpression during hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and its pathogenesis, and the effect of ectopic CK8 expression on hepatoma cell lines.
METHODS: We successfully established an in vitro HCV cell culture system (HCVcc) to investigate the different expression profiles of CK8 in Huh-7-HCV and Huh-7.5-HCV cells. The expression of CK8 at the mRNA level was determined by real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). The expression of CK8 at the protein level was evaluated by Western blotting. We then constructed a eukaryotic expression combination vector containing the coding sequence of human full length CK8 gene. CK8 cDNA was amplified by reverse transcription-PCR and inserted into pEGFP-C1 and the positive clone pEGFP-CK8 was obtained. After confirming the sequence, the recombinant plasmid was transfected into SMMC7721 cells with lipofectamine2000 and CK8 expression was detected using inverted fluorescence microscopy, RT-PCR and Western blotting. Besides, we identified biological function of CK8 on SMMC7721 cells, including cell proliferation, cell cycle and apoptosis detection.
RESULTS: RT-PCR showed that the expression level of CK8 in Huh-7-HCV and Huh-7.5-HCV cells was 2.88 and 2.95 times higher than in control cells. Western blot showed that CK8 expression in Huh-7-HCV and Huh-7.5-HCV cells was 2.53 and 3.26 times higher than that in control cells, respectively. We found that CK8 at mRNA and protein levels were both significantly increased in HCVcc. CK8 was up-regulated in SMMC7721 cells. CK8 expression at the mRNA level was significantly upregulated in SMMC7721/pEGFP-CK8 cells. CK8 expression in SMMC7721/ pEGFP-CK8 cells was 2.69 times higher than in SMMC7721 cells, and was 2.64 times higher than in SMMC7721/pEGFP-C1 cells. CK8 expression at the protein level in SMMC7721/pEGFP-CK8 cells was 2.46 times higher than in SMMC7721 cells, and was 2.29 times higher than in SMMC7721/pEGFP-C1 cells. Further analysis demonstrated that forced expression of CK8 slowed cell growth and induced apoptosis of SMMC7721 cells.
CONCLUSION: CK8 up-regulation might have a functional role in HCV infection and pathogenesis, and could be a promising target for the treatment of HCV infection.
Hepatitis C virus cell culture system; Cytokeratin 8; Up-regulation; Eukaryotic expression; Apoptosis
In many parts of the world, including in China, extreme heat events or heat waves are likely to increase in intensity, frequency, and duration in light of climate change in the next decades. Risk perception and adaptation behaviors are two important components in reducing the health impacts of heat waves, but little is known about their relationships in China. This study aimed to examine the associations between risk perception to heat waves, adaptation behaviors, and heatstroke among the public in Guangdong province, China.
A total of 2,183 adult participants were selected using a four-stage sampling method in Guangdong province. From September to November of 2010 each subject was interviewed at home by a well-trained investigator using a structured questionnaire. The information collected included socio-demographic characteristics, risk perception and spontaneous adaptation behaviors during heat wave periods, and heatstroke experience in the last year. Chi-square tests and unconditional logistic regression models were employed to analyze the data.
This study found that 14.8%, 65.3% and 19.9% of participants perceived heat waves as a low, moderate or high health risk, respectively. About 99.1% participants employed at least one spontaneous adaptation behavior, and 26.2%, 51.2% and 22.6% respondents employed <4, 4–7, and >7 adaptation behaviors during heat waves, respectively. Individuals with moderate (OR=2.93, 95% CI: 1.38-6.22) or high (OR=10.58, 95% CI: 4.74-23.63) risk perception experienced more heatstroke in the past year than others. Drinking more water and wearing light clothes in urban areas, while decreasing activity as well as wearing light clothes in rural areas were negatively associated with heatstroke. Individuals with high risk perception and employing <4 adaptation behaviors during heat waves had the highest risks of heatstroke (OR=47.46, 95% CI: 12.82-175.73).
There is a large room for improving health risk perception and adaptation capacity to heat waves among the public of Guangdong province. People with higher risk perception and fewer adaptation behaviors during heat waves may be more vulnerable to heat waves.
Risk perception; Climate change; Heat waves; Extreme heat; Adaptation behaviors; Heatstroke; Interactive effect
Clinical diagnosis of acute graft-versus-host disease (aGVHD) mainly depends on clinical manifestation and tissue biopsies, leading to a delayed diagnosis and treatment for aGVHD patients when the early symptom is insignificant. Our objective was to investigate the possibility of prewarning the risk of aGVHD before and after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT) by serum protein profiling combined with serum ferritin. The difference in polypeptide expression before and after transplantation had been compared by using CLINPROT technology, and serum ferritin levels have been analyzed simultaneously. Through combining serum ferritin and MS spectral data, the diagnosis sensitivity and specificity of our model for prewarning severe aGVHD (III~IV°aGVHD) before transplant all increased to 90.0%, while after transplant, the sensitivity and specificity are 78.3% and 86.4%. Our joint prewarning model could predict the risk of aGVHD, especially severe aGVHD before and after transplant, which also provides a reliable method to the continuous monitoring of the condition of patients.
Previous phylogenetic studies of the grape family (Vitaceae) yielded poorly resolved deep relationships, thus impeding our understanding of the evolution of the family. Next-generation sequencing now offers access to protein coding sequences very easily, quickly and cost-effectively. To improve upon earlier work, we extracted 417 orthologous single-copy nuclear genes from the transcriptomes of 15 species of the Vitaceae, covering its phylogenetic diversity. The resulting transcriptome phylogeny provides robust support for the deep relationships, showing the phylogenetic utility of transcriptome data for plants over a time scale at least since the mid-Cretaceous. The pros and cons of transcriptome data for phylogenetic inference in plants are also evaluated.
Classical swine fever (CSF) caused by CSF virus (CSFV) is a highly contagious disease of pigs. The RNA helicases retinoic acid-inducible gene I (RIG-I) and melanoma differentiation-associated gene 5 (MDA-5) are differentially involved in the detection of various RNA viruses. In present study, we investigated the roles of RIG-I and MDA-5 in eliciting antiviral and inflammatory responses to CSFV shimen strain in Porcine alveolar macrophages (PAMs).
CSFV Shimen strain was used as challenge virus in this study and PAMs were cultured in vitro. Interferon regulatory factor (IRF)-3 and nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) translocation was detected using immunofluorescent staining; RIG-I, MDA5, interferon promoter-stimulating factor 1 (IPS-1), IRF-3 and NF-κB expression was measured by Western Blotting; Interferon beta (IFN-β), IFN-α, interleukin-1beta (IL-1β), IL-6 and tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α) expression was tested by Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA) and shRNA-mediated knockdown of MDA5 or RIG-I was performed.
The findings suggested that the initial response to CSFV infection resulted in the higher expression of RIG-I and MDA5 leading to the activation of IPS-1, IRF-3 and NF-κB in a dose-dependent manner. Evaluation of IFN-α, IFN-β, IL-1β, IL-6 or TNF-α expressed by PAMs showed significant differences between infected and uninfected cells. CSFV infected cells induced to express high levels of IFN-α, IFN-β, IL-1β, IL-6 and TNF-α in a dose-dependent way within 24 h post-infection (hpi). At the same time, CSFV improved the nuclear translocation of IRF-3 and NF-κB. We also directly compared and assessed the roles of RIG-I and MDA5 in triggering innate immune actions during CSFV infection through shRNA-mediated knockdown of MDA5 or RIG-I. We found that, compared to the control, the production of IFN-α, IFN-β, IL-1β, IL-6 and TNF-α in response to CSFV infection was heavily reduced in RIG-I knockdown cells while it was moderately decreased in MDA5 knockdown cells. PAMs derived from knockdown of both RIG-I and MDA5 almost failed to produce IFNs and inflammatory cytokines.
It indicates that CSFV can be recognized by both RIG-I and MDA5 to initiate the RIG-I signaling pathway to trigger innate defenses against infection.
RIG-I; MDA5; CSF; CSFV; IRF-3; NF-κB; Interferon; Inflammatory response; PAM
To investigate the prediction value of preoperative serum alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) level for the prognosis of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), by comparing pathological characteristics, recurrence rate and survival rate after hepatectomy.
108 cases of HCC patients who received liver resection in our hospital from 2005 to 2011 were enrolled in this study. According to preoperative serum AFP level, the patients were divided into AFP ≤ 20 ng/mL group, AFP 20 to 400 ng/mL group and AFP > 400 ng/mL group, and the clinicopathological and cytopathological features were compared. All the patients were followed up for 24 months, the postoperative recurrence rates and survival rates were compared and analyzed, and the risk factors for HCC postoperative survival rate were studied by multifactor regression analysis.
Of the 108 cases of HCC patients, there were 42 cases in AFP ≤20 ng/mL group, 28 cases in AFP 20–400 ng/mL group and 39 cases in AFP > 400 ng/mL group. It was shown that cell differentiation degrees (χ2 = 20.198, P = 0.000) and microvascular invasion rates (χ2 = 20.358, P = 0.000) were significantly different among the three groups. The AFP ≤ 20 ng/mL group showed higher cell differentiation degrees and significantly lower microvascular invasion rates compared to the other groups (P < 0.05). The follow-up data showed that postoperative 2-year recurrence rate (χ2 = 6.164, P = 0.046), 18-month survival rate (χ2 = 7.647, P = 0.022) and 24-month survival rate (χ2 = 6.725, P = 0.035) of the three groups were significantly different, and we found that the AFP ≤ 20 ng/mL group had lower postoperative 2-year recurrence rate, and higher 18-month survival rate and 24-month survival rate than the other two groups (P <0.05). Multiple logistic regression analysis indicated that tumor diameter (≥ 5 cm) and preoperative serum AFP level (> 400 ng/mL) were closely correlated with HCC postoperative survival rate (P <0.05).
It is shown that preoperative serum AFP level has considerable predictive value for the malignant feature and prognosis of HCC. It is suggested that HCC patients with no contraindication of operation and serum AFP ≤ 20 ng/mL can benefit most from primary treatment of hepatectomy. While HCC patients with serum AFP higher than 20 ng/mL need comprehensive therapy besides surgical resection and close follow up.
Alpha-fetoprotein; Hepatocellular carcinoma; Differentiation degree; Hepatectomy; Prognosis
It is well known that nitric oxide (NO) enhances salt tolerance of glycophytes. However, the effect of NO on modulating ionic balance in halophytes is not very clear. This study focuses on the role of NO in mediating K+/Na+ balance in a mangrove species, Kandelia obovata Sheue, Liu and Yong. We first analyzed the effects of sodium nitroprusside (SNP), an NO donor, on ion content and ion flux in the roots of K. obovata under high salinity. The results showed that 100 μM SNP significantly increased K+ content and Na+ efflux, but decreased Na+ content and K+ efflux. These effects of NO were reversed by specific NO synthesis inhibitor and scavenger, which confirmed the role of NO in retaining K+ and reducing Na+ in K. obovata roots. Using western-blot analysis, we found that NO increased the protein expression of plasma membrane (PM) H+-ATPase and vacuolar Na+/H+ antiporter, which were crucial proteins for ionic balance. To further clarify the molecular mechanism of NO-modulated K+/Na+ balance, partial cDNA fragments of inward-rectifying K+ channel, PM Na+/H+ antiporter, PM H+-ATPase, vacuolar Na+/H+ antiporter and vacuolar H+-ATPase subunit c were isolated. Results of quantitative real-time PCR showed that NO increased the relative expression levels of these genes, while this increase was blocked by NO synthesis inhibitors and scavenger. Above results indicate that NO greatly contribute to K+/Na+ balance in high salinity-treated K. obovata roots, by activating AKT1-type K+ channel and Na+/H+ antiporter, which are the critical components in K+/Na+ transport system.
This study aimed to characterize and compare the effects of obesity on gene expression profiles in two distinct adipose depots, epididymal and bone marrow, at two different ages in mice. Alterations in gene expression were analyzed in adipocytes isolated from diet-induced obese (DIO) C57BL/6J male mice at 6 and 14 months of age and from leptin deficient mice (ob/ob) at 6 months of age using microarrays. DIO affected gene expression in both depots at 6 and 14 months, but more genes were altered in epididymal than bone marrow adipocytes at each age and younger mice displayed more changes than older animals. In epididymal adipocytes a total of 2789 (9.6%) genes were differentially expressed at 6-months with DIO, whereas 952 (3.3%) were affected at 14-months. In bone marrow adipocytes, 347 (1.2%) genes were differentially expressed at 6-months with DIO, whereas only 189 (0.66%) were changed at 14-months. 133 genes were altered by DIO in both fat depots at 6-months, and 37 genes at 14-months. Only four genes were altered in both depots at both ages with DIO. Bone marrow adipocytes are less responsive to DIO than epididymal adipocytes and the response of both depots to DIO declines with age. This loss of responsiveness with age is likely due to age-associated changes in expression of genes related to adipogenesis, inflammation and mitochondrial function that are similar to and obscure the changes commonly associated with DIO. Patterns of gene expression were generally similar in epididymal adipocytes from ob/ob and DIO mice; however, several genes were differentially expressed in bone marrow adipocytes from ob/ob and DIO mice, perhaps reflecting the importance of leptin signaling for bone metabolism. In conclusion, obesity affects age-associated alterations in gene expression in both epididymal and bone marrow adipocytes regardless of diet or genetic background.
Genome-wide association studies (GWASs) in identifying the disease-associated genetic variants
have been proved to be a great pioneering work. Two-stage design and analysis are often adopted in
GWASs. Considering the genetic model uncertainty, many robust procedures have been proposed and
applied in GWASs. However, the existing approaches mostly focused on binary traits, and few work
has been done on continuous (quantitative) traits, since the statistical significance of these robust tests
is difficult to calculate. In this paper, we develop a powerful F-statistic-based robust joint analysis
method for quantitative traits using the combined raw data from both stages in the framework of
two-staged GWASs. Explicit expressions are obtained to calculate the statistical significance and
power. We show using simulations that the proposed method is substantially more robust than the
F-test based on the additive model when the underlying genetic model is unknown. An example for
rheumatic arthritis (RA) is used for illustration.
The hickory genus (Carya) contains ca. 17 species distributed in subtropical and tropical regions of eastern Asia and subtropical to temperate regions of eastern North America. Previously, the phylogenetic relationships between eastern Asian and eastern North American species of Carya were not fully confirmed even with an extensive sampling, biogeographic and diversification patterns had thus never been investigated in a phylogenetic context. We sampled 17 species of Carya and 15 species representing all other genera of the Juglandaceae as outgroups, with eight nuclear and plastid loci to reconstruct the phylogeny of Carya. The phylogenetic positions of seven extinct genera of the Juglandaceae were inferred using morphological characters and the molecular phylogeny as a backbone constraint. Divergence times within Carya were estimated with relaxed Bayesian dating. Biogeographic analyses were performed in DIVA and LAGRANGE. Diversification rates were inferred by LASER and APE packages. Our results support two major clades within Carya, corresponding to the lineages of eastern Asia and eastern North America. The split between the two disjunct clades is estimated to be 21.58 (95% HPD 11.07-35.51) Ma. Genus-level DIVA and LAGRANGE analyses incorporating both extant and extinct genera of the Juglandaceae suggested that Carya originated in North America, and migrated to Eurasia during the early Tertiary via the North Atlantic land bridge. Fragmentation of the distribution caused by global cooling in the late Tertiary resulted in the current disjunction. The diversification rate of hickories in eastern North America appeared to be higher than that in eastern Asia, which is ascribed to greater ecological opportunities, key morphological innovations, and polyploidy.
Cortical dopamine (DA) modulation of the gamma-amino butyric acid (GABA) system is closely associated with cognitive function and psychiatric disorders. We recently reported that the glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK-3β) pathway is required for hyperdopamine/D2 receptor-mediated inhibition of NMDA receptors in the prefrontal cortex. Here we explore whether GSK-3β is also involved in dopaminergic modulation of GABAA receptor-mediated inhibitory transmission. We confirmed that DA induces a dose-dependent, bidirectional regulatory effect on inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) in prefrontal neurons. The modulatory effects of DA were differentially affected by co-application of GSK-3β inhibitors and different doses of DA. GSK-3β inhibitors completely blocked high-dose (20 μM) DA-induced depressive effects on IPSCs but exhibited limited effects on the facilitating regulation of IPSC in low-dose DA (200 nM). We also confirmed that surface expressions of GABAA receptor β2/3 subunits were significantly decreased by DA applied in cultured prefrontal neurons and in vivo administration of DA reuptake inhibitor. These effects were blocked by prior administration of GSK-3β inhibitors. We explored DA-mediated regulation of GABAA receptor trafficking and exhibited the participation of brefeldin A-inhibited GDP/GTP exchange factor 2 (BIG2) or dynamin-dependent trafficking of GABAA receptors. Together, these data suggest that DA may act through different signaling pathways to affect synaptic inhibition, depending on the concentration. The GSK-3β signaling pathway is involved in DA-induced decrease in BIG2-dependent insertion and an increase in the dynamin- dependent internalization of GABAA receptors, which results in suppression of inhibitory synaptic transmission.
Receptor trafficking; inhibitory synaptic transmission; GSK-3; dopamine; neocortex
We sought to identify and characterize microRNA (miRNAs) that posttranscriptionally regulate the expression of scavenger receptor class B type I (SR-BI) and SR-BI-linked selective high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesteryl ester (CE) transport and steroidogenesis. Four miRNAs (miRNA-125a, miRNA-125b, miRNA-145, and miRNA-455) with a potential to regulate SR-BI were identified in silico and validated by quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR), Western blot analysis, and SR-BI 3′ untranslated region (UTR) reporter assays. In vitro treatment of primary rat granulosa cells and MLTC-1 cells with cyclic AMP (cAMP) or in vivo treatment of rat adrenals with adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) decreased the expression of miRNA-125a, miRNA-125b, and miRNA-455 and reciprocally increased SR-BI expression. Using luciferase constructs containing the 3′ untranslated region of SR-BI combined with miRNA overexpression and mutagenesis, we have provided evidence that steroidogenic SR-BI is a direct target of miRNA-125a and miRNA-455. Moreover, the transfection of Leydig tumor cells with precursor miRNA 125a (pre-miRNA-125a) or pre-miRNA-455 resulted in the suppression of SR-BI at both the transcript and protein levels and reduced selective HDL CE uptake and HDL-stimulated progesterone production. Transfection of liver Hepa 1-6 cells with pre-miRNA-125a significantly reduced SR-BI expression and its selective transport function. In contrast, overexpression of miRNA-145 did not affect SR-BI expression or selective HDL CE uptake mediated by SR-BI in steroidogenic cell lines. These data suggest that a trophic hormone and cAMP inversely regulate the expression of SR-BI and miRNA-125a and miRNA-455 in steroidogenic tissues/cells and that both miRNA-125a and miRNA-455, by targeting steroidogenic SR-BI, negatively regulate selective HDL CE uptake and HDL CE-supported steroid hormone production.
AIM: To evaluate the correlation between nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and microvascular complications in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM).
METHODS: Data were obtained from 1217 inpatients with T2DM (757 females, 460 males; aged 63.39 ± 12.28 years). NAFLD was diagnosed by hepatic ultrasonography. Diabetic nephropathy (DN), diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN), and diabetic retinopathy (DR) were diagnosed according to their respective criteria. The prevalence of NAFLD and the independent correlations of clinical characteristics with NAFLD were determined by cross-tabulation and logistic regression, respectively.
RESULTS: Approximately 61% of inpatients with T2DM in Qingdao, China had NAFLD, which decreased significantly with increase in age and prolonged course of diabetes. The prevalence of NAFLD in patients presenting with DN, DPN and DR was 49.4%, 57.2% and 54.9%, respectively. These rates were significantly lower than those of patients without DN, DPN and DR (65.9%, 65.6% and 66.1%, respectively, P < 0.05). Participants with NAFLD had greater body weight, waist circumference (WC), body mass index (BMI), fasting blood glucose (FBG), hemoglobin A1c, alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, γ-glutamyltransferase, blood pressure, as well as triglyceride (TG) levels and lower high-density lipoprotein (HDL) concentration than those without NAFLD (P < 0.05). NAFLD was positively correlated with BMI, WC, TG, FBG, diastolic blood pressure, and systolic blood pressure but negatively correlated with the duration of diabetes, DR, DPN, DN, and HDL.
CONCLUSION: Despite the benign nature of NAFLD, efforts should be directed toward early diagnosis, intensive blood glucose and blood pressure control, and effective dyslipidemia correction.
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease; Type 2 diabetes mellitus; Diabetic nephropathy; Diabetic retinopathy; Diabetic neuropathy
Aims. To examine the potential differences between multiple daily injection (MDI) regimens based on new long-acting insulin analogues (glargine or detemir) plus prandial insulin aspart and continuous subcutaneous insulin aspart infusion (CSII) in patients with poorly controlled type 2 diabetes. Methods. Patients (n = 119) with poorly controlled type 2 diabetes of a duration exceeding five years were randomly assigned into three groups: Group A treated with CSII using insulin aspart; Group B treated with glargine-based MDI and Group C treated with detemir-based MDI. Results. Good glycemic control was achieved by patients in Group A in a significantly shorter duration than patients in Groups B and C. Total daily insulin, basal insulin dose and dose per kg body weight in Group A were significantly less than those in Groups B and C. Daily blood glucose fluctuation in Group A was significantly less than that in Groups B and C. There were no differences between Groups B and C. Conclusions. Aspart-based CSII may achieve good blood glucose control with less insulin doses over a shorter period compared with glargine or detemir-based MDI. No differences between glargine- and detemir-based MDI were detected in poorly controlled subjects with type 2 diabetes.