Menopausal symptoms have been suggested to be an indicator of better prognosis among patients treated for breast cancer, because women who experience these symptoms usually have a lower level of estrogen. We tested this hypothesis in a population-based, prospective cohort study involving 4,842 women with stage 0 to III primary breast cancer who were enrolled in the Shanghai Breast Cancer Survival Study between March 2002 and April 2006, were aged 20 to 75 years, and were recruited 6 months post-diagnosis. They were followed-up by in-person surveys and record linkages with the vital statistics registry. Cox regression analysis was used to evaluate the association of menopausal symptoms at baseline with breast cancer recurrence. Approximately 56% of patients experienced at least one menopausal symptom, including hot flashes, night sweats, and/or vaginal dryness at baseline. During a median follow-up period of 5.3 years, 720 women had a recurrence. Experiencing hot flashes or having ≥2 menopausal symptoms was associated with lower risk of recurrence among premenopausal women (hazard ratio [HR]=0.77, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.62-0.96 for hot flashes; 0.73, 0.56-0.96 for ≥2 menopausal symptoms). Lower recurrence risk in relation to hot flashes was also observed among women who were not overweight/obese (HR=0.78, 95% CI: 0.64-0.99), those with relatively low waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) (HR=0.77, 95% CI: 0.61-0.97), and those who used tamoxifen (HR=0.75, 95% CI: 0.58-0.98). Consistently experiencing multiple menopausal symptoms was associated with lower recurrence risk among women with low WHR or who used tamoxifen. This large, population-based cohort study of women with breast cancer confirms that experiencing menopausal symptoms is an indicator of favorable breast cancer prognosis.
To inform the design and assess the feasibility of a prospective effectiveness study evaluating an insulin delivery device for patients with diabetes mellitus to be conducted within the membership of a large US commercial insurer.
Providers who issued ≥1 insulin prescription between January 1, 2011 and September 30, 2011 were selected from administrative claims contained in the HealthCore Integrated Research DatabaseSM. Adult diabetes patients with visits to these providers were identified. Providers were dichotomized into high- (HVPs) and low-volume providers (LVPs) based on median number of diabetes patients per provider.
We identified 15,349 HVPs and 15,313 LVPs (median number of patients = 14). Most HVPs were located in the Midwest (6,291 [41.0%]) and South (5,092 [33.2%]), while LVPs were evenly distributed across regions. Over 80% (12,769) of HVPs practiced family or internal medicine; 6.4% (989) were endocrinologists. HVPs prescribed insulin to an average of 25% of patients. Patients of HVPs (522,527) had similar characteristics as patients of LVPs (80,669), except for geographical dispersion, which followed that of providers. Approximately 65% of patients were aged 21–64 years and 97% had type 2 diabetes. Among patients with ≥1 available HbA1C result during 2011 (103,992), 48.3% (50,193) had an average HbA1C ≥7.0%. Among patients initiating insulin, 79.6% (22,205) had an average HbA1C ≥7.0%.
The observed provider and patient populations support the feasibility of the prospective study. Sampling of patients from HVPs is efficient while minimizing bias as patient characteristics are similar to those from LVPs. The study also highlights unmet needs for improved glycemic control since approximately half of patients with diabetes are not on goal.
diabetes mellitus; claims analysis; prospective study design; insulin delivery
Molecular imaging of atherosclerotic biomarkers is critical for non-invasive detection and diagnosis of atherosclerotic plaques and therapeutic management. Fibrin and fibronectin accumulate at elevated levels in atherosclerotic plaques and are associated with atherogenesis and disease progression. Molecular imaging of these biomarkers has the potential to non-invasively characterize plaque burden. In this work, we investigated the effectiveness of a peptide-targeted macrocyclic Gd(III) chelate, CLT1-dL-(DOTA-Gd)4, specific to fibrin-fibronectin complexes for molecular MRI of atherosclerosis. Atherosclerotic plaques were induced in Apolipoprotein E-knockout (ApoE-/-) mice by feeding with high fat and cholesterol-enriched diet (HFD) for up to 30 weeks. MRI of the vessel wall in the arch aorta was performed at 10, 20 and 30 weeks after the onset of HFD. High spatial-resolution MRI was performed prior and up to 35 minutes after i.v. injection of CLT1-dL-(DOTA-Gd)4 or a nonspecific control agent at a dose of 0.1 mmol-Gd/kg. CLT1-dL-(DOTA-Gd)4 produced stronger enhancement in the atherosclerotic lesions of the aortic wall than the control at all time points in the mice. Cross sectional MR images of the aortic arch revealed progressive thickening of the atherosclerotic vessel wall in the mice on HFD for up to 30 weeks. This progression correlated well to histological staining, as well as fibrin and fibronectin immunochemical stained images. Molecular MRI with CLT1-dL-(DOTA-Gd)4 has a potential for detecting atherosclerosis and non-invasive monitoring of the progression of the plaques.
Molecular MRI; atherosclerosis; CLT1 peptide; targeted contrast agent; macrocyclic Gd(III) chelate
Breast cancer mortality is primarily due to the occurrence of metastatic disease. We have identified a novel potential therapeutic agent derived from an edible root of the plant Colocasia esculenta, commonly known as taro, that has demonstrable activity in a preclinical model of metastatic breast cancer and that should have minimal toxicity. We have shown for the first time that a water-soluble extract of taro (TE) potently inhibits lung colonizing ability as well as spontaneous metastasis from mammary gland-implanted tumors, in a murine model of highly metastatic ER, PR and Her-2/neu negative breast cancer. TE modestly inhibits proliferation of some, but not all, breast and prostate cancer cell lines. Morphologic changes including cell rounding were observed. Tumor cell migration was completely blocked by TE. TE treatment also inhibited prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) synthesis and downregulated cyclooxygenase (COX) 1 and 2 mRNA expression. We purified the active compound(s) to near homogeneity with antimetastatic activity comparable to stock TE. The active compound with a native size of approximately 25 kD contains two fragments of nearly equal size. The N-terminal amino acid sequencing of both fragments reveals that the active compound is highly related to three taro proteins; 12 kD storage protein, tarin and lectin. All are similar in terms of amino acid sequence, post-translational processing and all contain a carbohydrate-binding domain. This is the first report describing a compound(s) derived from taro, that potently and specifically inhibits tumor metastasis.
Taro; Breast cancer; Antimetastatic activity; Tumor; Cancer therapy
A 74-year-old man presented with a progressively worsening pain in sacrum and was diagnosed to have a sacral chordoma by biopsy in May, 2004. Percutaneous intratumoral injection with lipiodol-pingyangmycin suspension (LPS) was carried out under image guidance and repeated when the pain in sacrum recurred and the tumor increased. During a 6-year follow-up period, three sessions of this treatment were executed. CT imaging and Karnofsky Performance Score were used to evaluate the size of tumor and quality of life, respectively. The patient was free of pain after each procedure and had a high quality of life with a Karnofsky Performance Score above 80 points. The tumor lesion in sacral area was effectively controlled. No complications were observed. Percutaneous intratumoral injection with LPS under image guidance may be an effective and safe alternative for the patients with sacral chordoma.
Percutaneous intratumoral injection; Lipiodol-pingyangmycin suspension; Sacral chordoma
Over the past three decades, mortality from lung cancer has sharply and continuously increased in China, ascending to the first cause of death among all types of cancer. The ability to identify the actual sequence of gene mutations may help doctors determine which mutations lead to precancerous lesions and which produce invasive carcinomas, especially using next-generation sequencing (NGS) technology. In this study, we analyzed the latest lung cancer data in the COSMIC database, in order to find genomic “hotspots” that are frequently mutated in human lung cancer genomes. The results revealed that the most frequently mutated lung cancer genes are EGFR, KRAS and TP53. In recent years, EGFR and KRAS lung cancer test kits have been utilized for detecting lung cancer patients, but they presented many disadvantages, as they proved to be of low sensitivity, labor-intensive and time-consuming. In this study, we constructed a more complete catalogue of lung cancer mutation events including 145 mutated genes. With the genes of this list it may be feasible to develop a NGS kit for lung cancer mutation detection.
Lung cancer; Next-generation sequencing; Somatic mutation kit; COSMIC
Dexras1, a small G-protein localized predominantly to the brain, is transcriptionally upregulated by the synthetic glucocorticoid dexamethasone. It has close homology to the Ras subfamily, but differs in that Dexras1 contains an extended 7 kDa C-terminal tail. Previous studies in our laboratory showed that NMDA receptor activation, via NO and Dexras1, physiologically stimulates DMT1, the major iron importer. A membrane permeable iron chelator substantially reduces NMDA-excitotoxicity suggesting that Dexras1-mediated iron influx plays a crucial role in NMDA/NO-mediated cell death. We here report that iron influx is elicited by nitric oxide but not by other pro-apoptotic stimuli such as H2O2 or staurosporine. Deletion of Dexras1 in mice attenuates NO-mediated cell death in dissociated primary cortical neurons and retinal ganglion cells in vivo. Thus Dexras1 appears to mediate NMDA-elicited neurotoxicity via NO and iron influx.
Optical coherence microscopy (OCM) is a widely used structural imaging modality. To extend its application in molecular imaging, gold nanorods are widely used as contrast agents for OCM. However, they very often offer limited sensitivity as a result of poor signal to background ratio. Here we experimentally demonstrate that a novel OCM implementation based on dark-field circular depolarization detection can efficiently detect circularly depolarized signal from gold nanorods and at the same time efficiently suppress the background signals. This results into a significant improvement in signal to background ratio.
(110.4500) Optical coherence tomography; (120.5820) Scattering measurements; (180.3170) Interference microscopy; (290.5850) Scattering, particles; (290.5855) Scattering, polarization
Inhibitors of apoptosis (IAPs) play important roles in apoptosis and NF-κB activation. In this study, we cloned and characterized three IAPs (LvIAP1-3) from the Pacific white shrimp, Litopenaeusvannamei. LvIAP1-3 proteins shared signature domains and exhibited significant similarities with other IAP family proteins. The tissue distributions of LvIAP1-3 were studied. The expression of LvIAP1-3 was induced in the muscle after white spot syndrome virus (WSSV) infection. LvIAP1 expression in the gill, hemocytes, hepatopancreas, and intestine was responsive to WSSV and Vibrioalginolyticus infections. LvIAP2 expression in the gill, hemocytes, and hepatopancreas was also responsive to WSSV infection. The expression of LvIAP3 in the gill, hemocytes, and intestine was reduced after V. alginolyticus infection. When overexpressed in Drosophila S2 cells, GFP labeled-LvIAP2 was distributed in the cytoplasm and appeared as speck-like aggregates in the nucleus. Both LvIAP1 and LvIAP3 were widely distributed throughout the cytoplasm and nucleus. The expression of LvIAP1, LvIAP2, and LvIAP3 was significantly knocked down by dsRNA-mediated gene silencing. In the gill of LvIAP1- or LvIAP3-silenced shrimp, the expression of WSSV VP28 was significantly higher than that of the dsGFP control group, suggesting that LvIAP1 and LvIAP3 may play protective roles in host defense against WSSV infection. Intriguingly, the LvIAP2-silenced shrimp all died within 48 hours after dsLvIAP2 injection. In the hemocytes of LvIAP2-silenced shrimps, the expression of antimicrobial peptide genes (AMPs), including Penaeidins, lysozyme, crustins, Vibriopenaeicidae-induced cysteine and proline-rich peptides (VICPs), was significantly downregulated, while the expression of anti-lipopolysaccharide factors (ALFs) was upregulated. Moreover, LvIAP2 activated the promoters of the NF-κB pathway-controlled AMPs, such as shrimp Penaeidins and Drosophila drosomycin and attacin A, in Drosophila S2 cells. Taken together, these results reveal that LvIAP1 and LvIAP3 might participate in the host defense against WSSV infection, and LvIAP2 might be involved in the regulation of shrimp AMPs.
Swallowing dysfunction (also known as dysphagia), which results in a deterioration of nutritional intake, slows rehabilitation and causes aspiration pneumonia, is very common following neurological impairments. Although videofluorographic (VF) examination is widely used for detecting aspiration, an objective and non-invasive method for assessing swallowing function has yet to be established because of a lack of adequate devices and protocols. In this paper, a bend sensor whose resistance is altered by bending was introduced to monitor swallowing-related laryngeal movement.
Six healthy male volunteers were recruited in the present study. Specific time points on the signal waveform produced by the bend sensor were defined to describe laryngeal movement by differential analysis. Additionally, the physiological significance of the obtained waveform was confirmed by analyzing the sequential correlations between the signal waveform from the bend sensor and hyoid bone kinetics simultaneously recorded by VF.
Seven time points were successfully defined on the signal waveform to reference laryngeal movement. Each time point was well correlated with certain VF events, with evidence of no significant time lags, and there were positive correlations between waveform time points and matched VF events. Furthermore, obvious similarities were noticed between the duration of each phase on the signal waveform and the duration of the matched hyoid bone activity.
The present monitoring system using a bend sensor might be useful for observing the temporal aspects of laryngeal movement during swallowing, and it was well coordinated with hyoid bone movement.
microRNAs (miRNAs) are short noncoding RNAs that negatively regulate gene expression. Although recent evidences have been indicated that their aberrant expression may play an important role in cancer stem cells, the mechanism of their deregulation in neoplastic transformation of liver cancer stem cells (LCSCs) has not been explored. In our study, the HCC model was established in F344 rats by DEN induction. The EpCAM+ cells were sorted out from unfractionated fetal liver cells and liver cancer cells using the FACS analysis and miRNA expression profiles of two groups were screened through microarray platform. Gain-of-function studies were performed in vitro and in vivo to determine the role of miR-92b on proliferation and differentiation of the hepatic progenitors. In addition, luciferase reporter system and gene function analysis were used to predict miR-92b target. we found that miR-92b was highly downregulated in EpCAM+ fetal liver cells in expression profiling studies. RT-PCR analysis demonstrated reverse correlation between miR-92b expression and differentiation degree in human HCC samples. Overexpression of miR-92b in EpCAM+ fetal liver cells significantly increased proliferation and inhibited differentiation as well as in vitro and in vivo studies. Moreover, we verified that C/EBPß is a direct target of miR-92b and contributes to its effects on proliferation and differentiation. We conclude that aberrant expression of miR-92b can result in proliferation increase and differentiation arrest of hepatic progenitors by targeting C/EBPß.
A nonsurgical method to induce sterility would be a useful tool to control feral populations of animals. Our laboratories have experience with approaches aimed at targeting brain cells in vivo with vehicles that deliver a payload of either inhibitory RNAs or genes intended to correct cellular dysfunction. A combination/modification of these methods may provide a useful framework for the design of approaches that can be used to sterilize cats and dogs. For this approach to succeed it has to meet several conditions: It needs to target a gene essential for fertility. It must involve a method that can selectively silence the gene of interest. It also needs to deliver the silencing agent via a minimally invasive method. Finally, the silencing effect needs to be sustained for many years, so that expansion of the targeted population can be effectively prevented. In this article we discuss this subject and provide a succinct account of our previous experience with: a) molecular reagents able to disrupt reproductive cyclicity when delivered to regions of the brain involved in the control of reproduction, and b) molecular reagents able to ameliorate neuronal disease when delivered systemically using a novel approach of gene therapy.
RNA interference; Adeno-associated virus; microRNA
The chemokine CXCL12, also known as SDF-1, and its receptor, CXCR4, are overexpressed in prostate cancers and in animal models of prostate-specific PTEN deletion, but their regulation is poorly understood. Loss of the tumor suppressor PTEN (phosphatase and tensin homolog) is frequently observed in cancer, resulting in the deregulation of cell survival, growth, and proliferation. We hypothesize that loss of PTEN and subsequent activation of Akt, frequent occurrences in prostate cancer, regulate the CXCL12/CXCR4 signaling axis in tumor growth and bone metastasis.
Murine prostate epithelial cells from PTEN+/+, PTEN+/−, and PTEN−/− (prostate specific knockdown) mice as well as human prostate cancer cell lines C4-2B, PC3, and DU145 were used in gene expression and invasion studies with Akt inhibition. Additionally, HA-tagged Akt1 was overexpressed in DU145, and tumor growth in subcutaneous and intra-tibia bone metastasis models were analyzed.
Loss of PTEN resulted in increased expression of CXCR4 and CXCL12 and Akt inhibition reversed expression and cellular invasion. These results suggest that loss of PTEN may play a key role in the regulation of this chemokine activity in prostate cancer. Overexpression of Akt1 in DU145 resulted in increased CXCR4 expression, as well as increased proliferation and cell cycle progression. Subcutaneous injection of these cells also resulted in increased tumor growth as compared to neo controls. Akt1 overexpression reversed the osteosclerotic phenotype associated with DU145 cells to an osteolytic phenotype and enhanced intra-osseous tumor growth.
These results suggest the basis for activation of CXCL12 signaling through CXCR4 in prostate cancer driven by the loss of PTEN and subsequent activation of Akt. Akt1-associated CXCL12/CXCR4 signaling promotes tumor growth, suggesting that Akt inhibitors may potentially be employed as anticancer agents to target expansion of PC bone metastases.
In the title compound, C19H22N2, both the benzimidazole unit and the 2,6-diisopropylphenyl group are essentially planar [maximum deviations from the least-squares planes of 0.005 (1) and 0.009 (1) Å, respectively]. The dihedral angle between the two planes is 79.6 (7)°. In the crystal, molecules are linked into chains along the a-axis direction by weak C—H⋯N interactions. The crystal structure also features C—H⋯π interactions, which link the chains into a three-dimensional network.
2-Zinc-glycoprotein 1 (AZGP1) is a multidisciplinary protein that participates in many important functions in the human body, including fertilization, immunoregulation and lipid mobilization. Recently, it has been shown that AZGP1 is also involved in carcinogenesis and tumor differentiation. In this study, we investigated the expression levels and prognostic value of AZGP1 in primary gastric cancers.
Methods and Results
We examined the expression of AZGP1 in 35 paired cancerous and matched adjacent noncancerous gastric mucosa tissues by real-time quantitative RT-PCR (qRT-PCR) and western blotting. Furthermore, we analyzed AZGP1 expression in 248 patients who underwent resection procedures between 2005 and 2007 using immunohistochemistry. The relationships between the AZGP1 expression levels, the clinicopathological factors, and patient survival were investigated. AZGP1 expression was significantly reduced at both the mRNA (P = 0.023) and protein levels (P = 0.019) in tumor tissue samples, compared with expression in matched adjacent non-tumor tissue samples. The immunohistochemical staining data showed that AZGP1 expression was significantly decreased in 52.8% (131/248) of gastric adenocarcinoma cases. Clinicopathological analysis showed that the reduced expression of AZGP1 was significantly correlated with tumor location (P = 0.011), histological grade (P = 0.005) and T stage (P = 0.008). Kaplan–Meier survival curves revealed that the reduced expression of AZGP1 was associated with a poor prognosis in gastric adenocarcinoma patients (P = 0.009). Multivariate Cox analysis identified AZGP1 expression was an independent prognostic factor for overall survival of gastric adenocarcinoma patients (HR = 1.681, 95% CI = 1.134–2.494, P = 0.011).
Our study suggests that AZGP1 might serve as a candidate tumor suppressor and a potential prognostic biomarker in gastric carcinogenesis.
Septic cardiomyopathy is a severe condition that remains a challenge for clinical management. This study investigated whether the natural polyphenolic compound resveratrol could be used as a prophylactic treatment to alleviate sepsis-related myocardial injury; the underlying molecular mechanisms were deciphered by both in vitro and in vivo experiments.
A mouse model of endotoxin-induced cardiomyopathy was developed by intraperitoneal injection of LPS, and resveratrol was administered prophylatically to the animals. Serum LDH and CK activities were measured to detect myocardial injury, and echocardiography was performed to monitor cardiac structure and function. Various cytokines/chemokines and the Nrf2 antioxidant defense system were examined in the heart tissue. The effects of resveratrol on LPS-induced Nrf2 activation, ROS generation, and apoptotic cell death were further investigated in cultured primary human cardiomyocytes. An Nrf2 specific siRNA was used to define its role in resveratrol-mediated cardiomyocyte protective effect.
Resveratrol pretreatment significantly attenuated LPS-induced myocardial injury in mice, which was associated with suppressed proinflammatory cytokine production and enhanced Nrf2 activation in the heart. In cultured primary human cardiomyocytes, resveratrol activated Nrf2, inhibited LPS-induced ROS generation, and effectively protected the cells from LPS-induced apoptotic cell death. Knockdown of Nrf2 abrogated resveratrol-mediated protection of the cells from LPS-induced cell death.
Resveratrol effectively alleviates endotoxin-induced cardiac toxicity through mechanisms that involve the Nrf2 antioxidant defense pathway. Our data suggest that resveratrol might be developed as a useful prophylactic management for septic cardiomyopathy.
Total glucosides of paeony (TGP) is a biologically active compound extracted from Paeony root. TGP has been used in rheumatoid arthritis therapy for many years. However, the mechanism by which TGP prevents bone loss has been less explored.
TGP was orally administered for 3 months to New Zealand rabbits with antigen-induced arthritis (AIA). Digital x-ray knee images and bone mineral density (BMD) measurements of the subchondral knee bone were performed before sacrifice. Chondrocytes were observed using transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Histological analysis and mRNA expression of receptor activator of nuclear factor-B ligand (RANKL) and osteoprotegerin (OPG) were evaluated in joint tissues.
The BMD value in TGP rabbits was significantly higher compared with that seen in the AIA model rabbits. In addition, the subchondral bone plate was almost completely preserved by TGP treatment, while there was a decrease in bone plate integrity in AIA rabbits. There was less damage to the chondrocytes of the TGP treated group. Immunohistochemical examination of the TGP group showed that a higher percentage of TGP treated chondrocytes expressed OPG as compared to the chondrocytes isolated from AIA treated animals. In contrast, RANKL expression was significantly decreased in the TGP treated group compared to the AIA group. In support of the immunohistochemistry data, the expression of RANKL mRNA was decreased and OPG mRNA expression was enhanced in the TGP group when compared to that of the AIA model group.
These results reveal that TGP suppresses juxta-articular osteoporosis and prevents subchondral bone loss. The decreased RANKL and increased OPG expression seen in TGP treated animals could explain how administration of TGP maintains higher BMD.
Juxta-articular; Osteoporosis; Rheumatoid arthritis; Receptor activator of nuclear factor-B ligand; Total glucosides of paeony
Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) has been extensively studied for decades because of its health benefits including cancer prevention, anti-atherogenic and anti-obesity effects, and modulation of the immune system. We previously described the production of trans-10, cis-12 CLA in Yarrowia lipolytica by expressing the gene coding for linoleic acid isomerase from Propionibacterium acnes (pai). However the stable strain produced CLA at about 0.08% of dry cell weight (DCW), a level of production which was not high enough for practical applications. The goal of the present study was to enhance production of CLA by genetic engineering of Y. lipolytica strains.
We have now co-expressed the delta 12-desaturase gene (FADS12, d12) from Mortierella alpina together with the codon-optimized linoleic acid isomerase (opai) gene in Y. lipolytica, expressed under the control of promoter hp16d modified by fusing 12 copies of UAS1B to the original promoter hp4d. A multi-copy integration plasmid was used to further enhance the expression of both genes. Using glucose as the sole carbon source, the genetically-modified Y. lipolytica produced trans-10, cis-12-CLA at a level of up to 10% of total fatty acids and 0.4% of DCW. Furthermore, when the recombinant yeast was grown with soybean oil, trans-10, cis-12-CLA now accumulated at a level of up to 44% of total fatty acids, which represented 30% of DCW after 38.5 h of cultivation. In addition, trans-10, cis-12-CLA was also detected in the growth medium up to 0.9 g/l.
We have successfully produced trans-10, cis-12-CLA with a titre of 4 g/l of culture (3.1 g/l in cells and 0.9 g/l in culture medium). Our results demonstrate the potential use of Y. lipolytica as a promising microbial cell factory for trans-10, cis-12-CLA production.
Conjugated linoleic acid; Fermentation; Multi-copy integration; opai-d12 co-expression; Promoter hp16d; Soybean oil; Yarrowia lipolytica
We have previously demonstrated that B cells can shape the immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis, including the level of neutrophil infiltration and granulomatous inflammation at the site of infection. The present study examined the mechanisms by which B cells regulate the host neutrophilic response upon exposure to mycobacteria and how neutrophilia may influence vaccine efficacy. To address these questions, a murine aerosol infection tuberculosis (TB) model and an intradermal (ID) ear BCG immunization mouse model, involving both the μMT strain and B cell-depleted C57BL/6 mice, were used. IL (interleukin)-17 neutralization and neutrophil depletion experiments using these systems provide evidence that B cells can regulate neutrophilia by modulating the IL-17 response during M. tuberculosis infection and BCG immunization. Exuberant neutrophilia at the site of immunization in B cell-deficient mice adversely affects dendritic cell (DC) migration to the draining lymph nodes and attenuates the development of the vaccine-induced Th1 response. The results suggest that B cells are required for the development of optimal protective anti-TB immunity upon BCG vaccination by regulating the IL-17/neutrophilic response. Administration of sera derived from M. tuberculosis-infected C57BL/6 wild-type mice reverses the lung neutrophilia phenotype in tuberculous μMT mice. Together, these observations provide insight into the mechanisms by which B cells and humoral immunity modulate vaccine-induced Th1 response and regulate neutrophila during M. tuberculosis infection and BCG immunization.
Mycobacterium tuberculosis poses a serious threat to public health globally. It has been well established that T cells are critical in protection against M. tuberculosis. The role of B cells and humoral immunity in the process is less well understood. We previously showed that B cells and humoral immunity regulate the immune response against M. tuberculosis. The present study examined the mechanisms by which B cells regulate the host neutrophilic response upon exposure to mycobacteria and how neutrophilia may modulate the development of vaccine-induced protective immunity. The data reveal that B cells can regulate neutrophilia during M. tuberculosis infection and BCG vaccination by modulating the IL-17 response. Vaccination studies show that excess neutrophilia adversely affects the development of BCG-elicited Th1 response. These observations suggest that B cells can optimize the development of protective immunity upon BCG vaccination by regulating the IL-17/neutrophilic response. Understanding the mechanisms by which B cells and humoral immunity modulate the immune response during M. tuberculosis infection and BCG immunization, particularly those that regulate IL-17 levels and neutrophilia, may lead to the development of novel strategies for the control of the tubercle bacillus, including efficacious vaccines.
γδ T cells (γδT) belong to a distinct T cell lineage that performs immune functions different from αβ T cells (αβT). Previous studies have established that Erk1/2 MAPKs are critical for positive selection of αβT cells. Additional evidence also suggests that elevated Erk1/2 activity promotes γδT cell generation. RasGRP1, a guanine nucleotide releasing factor for Ras, plays an important role in positive selection of αβT cells by activating the Ras-Erk1/2 pathway. In this report, we demonstrate that RasGRP1 is critical for TCR-induced Erk1/2 activation in γδT cells but exerts different roles for γδT cell generation and activation. Deficiency of RasGRP1 does not obviously affect γδT cell numbers in the thymus but leads to increased γδT cells, particularly CD4−CD8+ γδT cells, in the peripheral lymphoid organs. The virtually unhindered γδT cell development in the RasGRP1−/− thymus proved to be cell intrinsic, while the increase in CD8+ γδT cells is caused by non-cell-intrinsic mechanisms. Our data provides genetic evidence that decreased Erk1/2 activation in the absence of RasGRP1 is compatible for γδT cell generation. Although RasGRP1 is dispensable for γδT cell generation, RasGRP1-deficient γδT cells are defective in proliferation following TCR stimulation. Additionally, RasGRP1-deficient γδT cells are impaired to produce IL-17 but not IFNγ. Together, these observations have revealed that RasGRP1 plays differential roles for γδ and αβ T cell development but is critical for γδT cell proliferation and production of IL-17.
Heat shock protein 27 (HSP27) shows attenuated expression in human coronary arteries as the extent of atherosclerosis progresses. In mice, overexpression of HSP27 reduces atherogenesis, yet the precise mechanism(s) are incompletely understood. Inflammation plays a central role in atherogenesis, and of particular interest is the balance of pro- and anti-inflammatory factors produced by macrophages. As nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) is a key immune signaling modulator in atherogenesis, and macrophages are known to secrete HSP27, we sought to determine if recombinant HSP27 (rHSP27) alters NF-κB signaling in macrophages. Treatment of THP-1 macrophages with rHSP27 resulted in the degradation of an inhibitor of NF-κB, IκBα, nuclear translocation of the NF-κB p65 subunit, and increased NF-κB transcriptional activity. Treatment of THP-1 macrophages with rHSP27 yielded increased expression of a variety of genes, including the pro-inflammatory factors, IL-1β, and TNF-α. However, rHSP27 also increased the expression of the anti-inflammatory factors IL-10 and GM-CSF both at the mRNA and protein levels. Our study suggests that in macrophages, activation of NF-κB signaling by rHSP27 is associated with upregulated expression and secretion of key pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines. Moreover, we surmise that it is the balance in expression of these mediators and antagonists of inflammation, and hence atherogenesis, that yields a favorable net effect of HSP27 on the vessel wall.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s12192-012-0356-0) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Heat shock protein 27 (HSP27); Macrophage; Nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) signaling; Atherosclerosis
Systematic determination of gene function is an essential step in fully understanding the precise contribution of each gene for the proper execution of molecular functions in the cell. Gene functional linkage is defined as to describe the relationship of a group of genes with similar functions. With thousands of genomes sequenced, there arises a great opportunity to utilize gene evolutionary information to identify gene functional linkages. To this end, we established a computational method (called TRACE) to trace gene footprints through a gene functional network constructed from 341 prokaryotic genomes. TRACE performance was validated and successfully tested to predict enzyme functions as well as components of pathway. A so far undescribed chromosome partitioning-like protein ro03654 of an oleaginous bacteria Rhodococcus sp. RHA1 (RHA1) was predicted and verified experimentally with its deletion mutant showing growth inhibition compared to RHA1 wild type. In addition, four proteins were predicted to act as prokaryotic SNARE-like proteins, and two of them were shown to be localized at the plasma membrane. Thus, we believe that TRACE is an effective new method to infer prokaryotic gene functional linkages by tracing evolutionary events.
Repressor activator protein 1 (RAP1) is the most highly conserved telomere protein. It is involved in protecting chromosome ends in fission yeast, promoting gene silencing in Saccharomyces cerevisiae while in Kluyveromyces lactis it is required to repress homology directed recombination (HDR) at telomeres. Since mammalian RAP1 requires TRF2 for stable expression, its role in telomere function has remained obscure. To understand how RAP1 plays such diverse functions at telomeres, we solved the crystal or solution structures of the C-terminal RCT domains of RAP1 from multiple organisms in complex with their respective protein-binding partners. Our comparative structural analysis establishes the RCT domain of RAP1 as an evolutionarily conserved protein-protein interaction module. In mammalian and fission yeast cells, this module interacts with TRF2 and Taz1, respectively, targeting RAP1 to chromosome ends for telomere end protection. While RAP1 repress NHEJ at fission yeast telomeres, at mammalian telomeres it is required to repress HDR. In contrast, S. cerevisiae RAP1 utilizes the RCT domain to recruit Sir3 to telomeres to mediate gene silencing. Together, our results reveal that depending on the organism, the evolutionarily conserved RAP1 RCT motif plays diverse functional roles at telomeres.
Parasecretion of the hematopoietic cytokines is considered as one of the mechanisms account for bone marrow hematopoiesis disorder. In this study, the level of IL-6 secreted by bone marrow stromal cells from a mouse model of aplastic anemia was analyzed. The aplastic anemia mouse model was established with cyclophosphamide in combination with chloramphenicol and 60Coγ radiation. The impairment of bone marrow hematopoiesis induced by irradiation and chemotherapeutic drugs was subsequently characterized by peripheral blood cell count, pathomorphological changes, and apoptosis rate. Furthermore, the in vitro proliferation of bone marrow stromal cells (BMSC) and the IL-6 secretion levels of BMSC were analyzed. In our model of aplastic anemia, the number of peripheral blood cells and bone marrow cells (BMC) were notably decreased, and the apoptosis rate of BMC increased. Furthermore, the proliferation of BMSC was obviously impeded while the IL-6 secretion levels of BMSC significantly increased. The findings of our study suggested that the IL-6 secretion level may be enhanced to some extent by the induction of aplastic anemia caused by irradiation and chemotherapeutic drugs and that the abnormal level of IL-6 might probably interfere with the stability of the bone marrow hematopoietic microenvironment.
In retrospective studies, odds ratio is often used as the measure of association. Under independent beta prior assumption, the exact posterior distribution of odds ratio given a single 2 × 2 table has been derived in the literature. However, independence between risks within the same study may be an oversimplified assumption because cases and controls in the same study are likely to share some common factors and thus to be correlated. Furthermore, in a meta-analysis of case-control studies, investigators usually have multiple 2×2 tables. In this paper, we first extend the published results on a single 2×2 table to allow within study prior correlation while retaining the advantage of closed form posterior formula, and then extend the results to multiple 2 × 2 tables and regression setting. The hyperparameters, including within study correlation, are estimated via an empirical Bayes approach. The overall odds ratio and the exact posterior distribution of the study-specific odds ratio are inferred based on the estimated hyperparameters. We conduct simulation studies to verify our exact posterior distribution formulas and investigate the finite sample properties of the inference for the overall odds ratio. The results are illustrated through a twin study for genetic heritability and a meta-analysis for the association between the N-acetyltransferase 2 (NAT2) acetylation status and colorectal cancer.
Bivariate beta-binomial model; Exact method; Hypergeometric function; Meta-analysis; Odds ratio; Sarmanov family