We report improved whole-genome shotgun sequences for the genomes of indica and japonica rice, both with multimegabase contiguity, or almost 1,000-fold improvement over the drafts of 2002. Tested against a nonredundant collection of 19,079 full-length cDNAs, 97.7% of the genes are aligned, without fragmentation, to the mapped super-scaffolds of one or the other genome. We introduce a gene identification procedure for plants that does not rely on similarity to known genes to remove erroneous predictions resulting from transposable elements. Using the available EST data to adjust for residual errors in the predictions, the estimated gene count is at least 38,000–40,000. Only 2%–3% of the genes are unique to any one subspecies, comparable to the amount of sequence that might still be missing. Despite this lack of variation in gene content, there is enormous variation in the intergenic regions. At least a quarter of the two sequences could not be aligned, and where they could be aligned, single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rates varied from as little as 3.0 SNP/kb in the coding regions to 27.6 SNP/kb in the transposable elements. A more inclusive new approach for analyzing duplication history is introduced here. It reveals an ancient whole-genome duplication, a recent segmental duplication on Chromosomes 11 and 12, and massive ongoing individual gene duplications. We find 18 distinct pairs of duplicated segments that cover 65.7% of the genome; 17 of these pairs date back to a common time before the divergence of the grasses. More important, ongoing individual gene duplications provide a never-ending source of raw material for gene genesis and are major contributors to the differences between members of the grass family.
Comparative genome sequencing of indica and japonica rice reveals that duplication of genes and genomic regions has played a major part in the evolution of grass genomes
Here we present the first diploid genome sequence of an Asian individual. The genome was sequenced to 36-fold average coverage using massively parallel sequencing technology. We aligned the short reads onto the NCBI human reference genome to 99.97% coverage, and guided by the reference genome, we used uniquely mapped reads to assemble a high-quality consensus sequence for 92% of the Asian individual's genome. We identified approximately 3 million single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) inside this region, of which 13.6% were not in the dbSNP database. Genotyping analysis showed that SNP identification had high accuracy and consistency, indicating the high sequence quality of this assembly. We also carried out heterozygote phasing and haplotype prediction against HapMap CHB and JPT haplotypes (Chinese and Japanese, respectively), sequence comparison with the two available individual genomes (J. D. Watson and J. C. Venter), and structural variation identification. These variations were considered for their potential biological impact. Our sequence data and analyses demonstrate the potential usefulness of next-generation sequencing technologies for personal genomics.
It is evident that epigenetic factors, especially DNA methylation, play essential roles in obesity development. Using pig as a model, here we investigated the systematic association between DNA methylation and obesity. We sampled eight variant adipose and two distinct skeletal muscle tissues from three pig breeds living within comparable environments but displaying distinct fat level. We generated 1,381 gigabases (Gb) of sequence data from 180 methylated DNA immunoprecipitation (MeDIP) libraries, and provided a genome-wide DNA methylation map as well as a gene expression map for adipose and muscle studies. The analysis showed global similarity and difference among breeds, sexes and anatomic locations, and identified the differentially methylated regions (DMRs). The DMRs in promoters are highly associated with obesity development via expression repression of both known obesity-related genes and novel genes. This comprehensive map provides a solid basis for exploring epigenetic mechanisms of adipose deposition and muscle growth.
Information on the health-related quality of life (HRQoL) of patients with genital warts (GW) in populations in mainland China is still limited. The aim of the study was to use a generic instrument to measure the impact of genital warts on HRQoL in men and women in this setting.
A multi-centre hospital-based cross-sectional study across 18 centers in China was conducted to interview patients using the European quality of life-5 dimension (EQ-5D) instrument; respondents' demographic and clinical data were also collected.
A total of 1,358 GW patients (612 men, 746 women) were included in the analysis, with a mean age of 32.0 ± 10.6 years. 56.4% of the patients reported some problems in the dimension of Anxiety/Depression (highest), followed by Pain/Discomfort (24.7%) and Mobility (3.5%). The overall visual analogue scale (VAS) score of the study population was found to be 65.2 ± 22.0, and the EQ-5D index score was found to be 0.843 ± 0.129 using Japanese preference weights (the Chinese preference was unavailable yet). Patients with lower VAS means and EQ-5D index scores were more often female, living in urban area, and suffering multiple GW (all p values < 0.05), but the values did not differ notably by age (p values > 0.05).
The HRQoL of patients with GW was substantially lower, compared to a national representative general population in China (VAS = ~80); the findings of different subgroups are informative for future GW prevention and control efforts.
The polycomb group protein B lymphoma Mo-MLV insertion region 1 homolog (Bmi-1) is dysregulated in various cancers, and its upregulation strongly correlates with an invasive phenotype and poor prognosis in patients with nasopharyngeal carcinomas. However, the underlying mechanism of Bmi-1–mediated invasiveness remains unknown. In the current study, we found that upregulation of Bmi-1 induced epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and enhanced the motility and invasiveness of human nasopharyngeal epithelial cells, whereas silencing endogenous Bmi-1 expression reversed EMT and reduced motility. Furthermore, upregulation of Bmi-1 led to the stabilization of Snail, a transcriptional repressor associated with EMT, via modulation of PI3K/Akt/GSK-3β signaling. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays revealed that Bmi-1 transcriptionally downregulated expression of the tumor suppressor PTEN in tumor cells through direct association with the PTEN locus. This in vitro analysis was consistent with the statistical inverse correlation detected between Bmi-1 and PTEN expression in a cohort of human nasopharyngeal carcinoma biopsies. Moreover, ablation of PTEN expression partially rescued the migratory/invasive phenotype of Bmi-1–silenced cells, indicating that PTEN might be a major mediator of Bmi-1–induced EMT. Our results provide functional and mechanistic links between the oncoprotein Bmi-1 and the tumor suppressor PTEN in the development and progression of cancer.
AIM: To determine whether and how magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-based total liver volume (TLV) and diffusion weighted imaging (DWI) could predict liver fibrosis.
METHODS: Sixteen experimental mature mini-pigs (6 males, 10 females), weighing between 20.0 and 24.0 kg were prospectively used to model liver fibrosis induced by intraperitoneal injection of 40% CCl4 dissolved in fat emulsion twice a week for 16 wk, and by feeding 40% CCl4 mixed with maize flour twice daily for the subsequent 5 wk. All the survival animals underwent percutaneous liver biopsy and DWI using b = 300, 500 and 800 s/mm2 followed by abdominal gadolinium-enhanced MRI at the 0, 5th, 9th, 16th and 21st weekend after beginning of the modeling. TLV was obtained on enhanced MRI, and apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) was obtained on DWI. Hepatic tissue specimens were stained with hematoxylin and Masson’s trichrome staining for staging liver fibrosis. Pathological specimens were scored using the human METAVIR classification system. Statistical analyses were performed to determine whether and how the TLV and ADC could be used to predict the stage of liver fibrosis.
RESULTS: TLV increased from stage 0 to 2 and decreased from stage 3 (r = 0.211; P < 0.001). There was a difference in TLV between stage 0-1 and 2-4 (P = 0.03) whereas no difference between stage 0-2 and 3-4 (P = 0.71). TLV could predict stage ≥ 2 [area under receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) = 0.682]. There was a decrease in ADC values with increasing stage of fibrosis for b = 300, 500 and 800 s/mm2 (r = -0.418, -0.535 and -0.622, respectively; all P < 0.001). Differences were found between stage 0-1 and 2-4 in ADC values for b = 300, 500 and 800 s/mm2, and between stage 0-2 and 3-4 for b = 500 or 800 s/mm2 (all P < 0.05). For predicting stage ≥ 2 and ≥ 3, AUC was 0.803 and 0.847 for b = 500 s/mm2, and 0.848 and 0.887 for b = 800 s/mm2, respectively.
CONCLUSION: ADC for b = 500 or 800 s/mm2 could be better than TLV and ADC for b = 300 s/mm2 to predict fibrosis stage ≥ 2 or ≥ 3.
Magnetic resonance imaging; Total liver volume; Liver fibrosis; Apparent diffusion coefficient; Stage
Classical swine fever virus (CSFV) can evade the immune response and establish chronic infection under natural and experimental conditions. Some genes related to antigen processing and presentation and to cytokine regulation are known to be involved in this response, but the precise mechanism through which each gene responds to CSFV infection remains unclear.
In this study, the amplification standard curve and corresponding linear regression equations for the genes SLA-2, TAP1, SLA-DR, Ii, CD40, CD80, CD86, IFN-α, and IFN-β were established successfully. Real-time RT-PCR was used to quantify the immune response gene transcription in PK-15 cells post CSFV infection. Results showed that: (1) immune response genes were generally down-regulated as a result of CSFV infection, and (2) the expression of SLA-2, SLA-DR, Ii and CD80 was significantly decreased (p<0.001).
We conclude that in vitro infection with CSFV inhibits the transcription of host immune response genes. These findings may facilitate the development of effective strategies for controlling CSF.
Classical swine fever virus (CSFV); Immune response genes; Real-time RT-PCR
Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have recently identified KIF1B as susceptibility locus for hepatitis B virus (HBV)–related hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). To further identify novel susceptibility loci associated with HBV–related HCC and replicate the previously reported association, we performed a large three-stage GWAS in the Han Chinese population. 523,663 autosomal SNPs in 1,538 HBV–positive HCC patients and 1,465 chronic HBV carriers were genotyped for the discovery stage. Top candidate SNPs were genotyped in the initial validation samples of 2,112 HBV–positive HCC cases and 2,208 HBV carriers and then in the second validation samples of 1,021 cases and 1,491 HBV carriers. We discovered two novel associations at rs9272105 (HLA-DQA1/DRB1) on 6p21.32 (OR = 1.30, P = 1.13×10−19) and rs455804 (GRIK1) on 21q21.3 (OR = 0.84, P = 1.86×10−8), which were further replicated in the fourth independent sample of 1,298 cases and 1,026 controls (rs9272105: OR = 1.25, P = 1.71×10−4; rs455804: OR = 0.84, P = 6.92×10−3). We also revealed the associations of HLA-DRB1*0405 and 0901*0602, which could partially account for the association at rs9272105. The association at rs455804 implicates GRIK1 as a novel susceptibility gene for HBV–related HCC, suggesting the involvement of glutamate signaling in the development of HBV–related HCC.
Previous studies strongly suggest the importance of genetic susceptibility for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). However, the studies about genetic etiology on HBV–related HCC were limited. Our genome-wide association study included 523,663 autosomal SNPs in 1,538 HBV–positive HCC patients and 1,465 chronic HBV carriers for the discovery analysis. 2,112 HBV–positive HCC cases and 2,208 HBV carriers (the initial validation), and 1,021 cases and 1,491 HBV carriers (the second validation), were then analyzed for validation. The fourth independent samples of 1,298 cases and 1,026 controls were analyzed as replication. We discovered two novel associations at rs9272105 (HLA-DQA1/DRB1) on 6p21.32 and rs455804 (GRIK1) on 21q21.3. HLA-DRB1 molecules play an important role in chronic HBV infection and progression to HCC. The association at rs455804 implicates GRIK1 as a novel susceptibility gene for HBV–related HCC, suggesting the involvement of glutamate signaling in the development of HBV–related HCC.
A recent genome-wide scan has identified two genetic variants in the HLA-DP region strongly associated with hepatitis B infection in Japanese. This study evaluates the effects of these risk variants in Chinese, where the HBV infection is the most popular in the world.
Methods and Findings
We have assessed the relationship between these two single nucleotide polymorphisms (rs3077 and rs9277535) and chronic hepatitis B infection in two independent case-control studies. The first population in Chinese Han included 736 patients and 782 spontaneously recovered controls. The second set was established in Chinese Zhuang minority of 177 patients and 208 controls. Both A alleles of rs3077 and rs9277535 significantly deceased the risk to CHB in Chinese Han (OR = 0.540, 95%CI: 0.464–0.628, P = 4.068×10−16 and OR = 0.696, 95%CI: 0.601–0.806, P = 1.062×10−6, respectively). Conceivably, rs9277535 was found to be associated with decreased risk of the disease in Chinese Zhuang, with an OR of 0.606 (95%CI, 0.441–0.833, P = 0.002).
Chronic hepatitis B susceptibility loci in HLA-DP region (rs3077 and rs9277535) identified by genome-wide scan in Japanese population were validated in Chinese population. These findings might provide clues to develop screening and surveillance strategies.
In this study, we examined anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory effects of the synthetic melanocortin peptide (Ac-Cys-Lys-Pro-Val-NH2)2 or (CKPV)2 against Candida albicans vaginitis. Our in vitro results showed that (CKPV)2 dose-dependently inhibited Candida albicans colonies formation. In a rat Candida albicans vaginitis model, (CKPV)2 significantly inhibited vaginal Candida albicans survival and macrophages sub-epithelial mucosa infiltration. For mechanisms study, we observed that (CKPV)2 inhibited macrophages phagocytosis of Candida albicans. Meanwhile, (CKPV)2 administration inhibited macrophage pro-inflammatory cytokines (TNF-α, IL-1β and IL-6) release, while increasing the arginase activity and anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 production, suggesting macrophages M1 to M2 polarization. Cyclic AMP (cAMP) production was also induced by (CKPV)2 administration in macrophages. These above effects on macrophages by (CKPV)2 were almost reversed by melanocortin receptor-1(MC1R) siRNA knockdown, indicating the requirement of MC1R in the process. Altogether, our results suggest that (CKPV)2 exerted anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory activities against Candida albicans vaginitis probably through inducing macrophages M1 to M2 polarization and MC1R activation.
For years, emerging infectious diseases have appeared worldwide and threatened the health of people. The emergence and spread of an infectious-disease outbreak are usually unforeseen, and have the features of suddenness and uncertainty. Timely understanding of basic information in the field, and the collection and analysis of epidemiological information, is helpful in making rapid decisions and responding to an infectious-disease emergency. Therefore, it is necessary to have an unobstructed channel and convenient tool for the collection and analysis of epidemiologic information in the field.
Baseline information for each county in mainland China was collected and a database was established by geo-coding information on a digital map of county boundaries throughout the country. Google Maps was used to display geographic information and to conduct calculations related to maps, and the 3G wireless network was used to transmit information collected in the field to the server. This study established a decision support system for the response to infectious-disease emergencies based on WebGIS and mobile services (DSSRIDE). The DSSRIDE provides functions including data collection, communication and analyses in real time, epidemiological detection, the provision of customized epidemiological questionnaires and guides for handling infectious disease emergencies, and the querying of professional knowledge in the field. These functions of the DSSRIDE could be helpful for epidemiological investigations in the field and the handling of infectious-disease emergencies.
The DSSRIDE provides a geographic information platform based on the Google Maps application programming interface to display information of infectious disease emergencies, and transfers information between workers in the field and decision makers through wireless transmission based on personal computers, mobile phones and personal digital assistants. After a 2-year practice and application in infectious disease emergencies, the DSSRIDE is becoming a useful platform and is a useful tool for investigations in the field carried out by response sections and individuals. The system is suitable for use in developing countries and low-income districts.
The aim of this study was to determine whether and how the diameter of the vein that gives rise to the inflowing vein of the esophageal and gastric fundic varices secondary to posthepatitic cirrhosis, as measured with multidetector-row computed tomography, could predict the varices and their patterns.
A total of 106 patients with posthepatitic cirrhosis underwent multidetector-row computed tomography. Patients with and without esophageal and gastric fundic varices were enrolled in Group 1 and Group 2, respectively. Group 1 was composed of Subgroup A, consisting of patients with varices, and Subgroup B consisted of patients with varices in combination with portal vein-inferior vena cava shunts. The diameters of the originating veins of veins entering the varices were reviewed and statistically analyzed.
The originating veins were the portal vein in 8% (6/75) of patients, the splenic vein in 65.3% (49/75) of patients, and both the portal and splenic veins in 26.7% (20/75) of patients. The splenic vein diameter in Group 1 was larger than that in Group 2, whereas no differences in portal vein diameters were found between groups. In Group 1, the splenic vein diameter in Subgroup A was larger than that in Subgroup B. A cut-off splenic vein diameter of 8.5 mm achieved a sensitivity of 83.3% and specificity of 58.1% for predicting the varices. For discrimination of the varices in combination with and without portal vein-inferior vena cava shunts, a cut-off diameter of 9.5 mm achieved a sensitivity of 66.7% and specificity of 60.0%.
The diameter of the splenic vein can be used to predict esophageal and gastric fundic varices and their patterns.
Portal Hypertension; Esophageal and Gastric Fundic Varices; Originating Vein; Computed Tomography
AIM: To investigate contrast-enhanced computed tomography (CECT) for discriminating esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) from normal esophagus and evaluating outcomes within tumors after chemoradiotherapy (CRT).
METHODS: Sixty-four patients with surgical ESCC served as group A, and underwent thoracic contrast-enhanced scan with 16-section multidetector row CT 1 wk before surgery. Thirty-five patients with advanced ESCC receiving 4-wk CRT and showing response to CRT served as group B, and underwent CT scans similar with group A 4 wk after completion of CRT. In group A, differences in CT attenuation values (in HU) between the preoperative ESCC and background normal esophageal wall (delta CT1), or between different background normal esophageal walls (delta CT2) were compared. Furthermore, delta CT1 between group A and B was also compared.
RESULTS: In group A, mean delta CT1 was higher than delta CT2 (23.86 ± 10.59 HU vs 6.24 ± 3.06 HU, P < 0.05). When a delta CT1 of 10.025 HU was employed at a cut-off value to discriminate ESCC from normal esophagus, a sensitivity of 89.1% and specificity of 90.6% were achieved. Mean delta CT1 was lower in group B than in group A (9.25 ± 10.86 vs 23.86 ± 10.59, P < 0.05), and a delta CT1 of 15.45 HU was obtained at a cut-off value to assess the CRT changes with a sensitivity of 76.6% and specificity of 77.1%.
CONCLUSION: CECT might be a clinical technique for discriminating ESCC from normal esophagus, and evaluating outcome in the tumors treated with CRT.
Esophagus; Squamous cell carcinoma; Multidetector row computed tomography; Attenuation value; Chemoradiotherapy
In mammals, hair cells do not undergo spontaneous regeneration when they are damaged and result in permanent hearing loss. Previous studies in cultured Organ of Corti dissected from neonatal animals have shown that both DAPT (r-secretase inhibitor in the Notch signal pathway) treatment and Atoh1 overexpression can induce supernumerary hair cells. The effects of simultaneous DAPT treatment and Atoh1 over expression in the cells of cultured Organ of Corti from neonatal rats are still obscure.
In this study, we set out to investigate the interaction of DAPT treatment and Atoh1 overexpression as well as culture time and the location of basilar fragment isolated form neonatal rat inner ear. Our results showed that DAPT treatment induced more hair cells in the apical turn, while Atoh1 overexpression induced more extra hair cells in the middle turn of the cultured Organ of Corti. When used together, their effects are additive but not synergistic. In addition, the induction of supernumerary hair cells by both DAPT and Atoh1 overexpression is dependent on the treatment time and the location of the cochlear tissue. Moreover, DAPT treatment causes dramatic changes in the orientation of the stereociliary bundles of hair cells, whereas Atoh1 overexpression didn't induce drastic change of the polarity of stereociliary bundles.
Taken together, these results suggest that DAPT treatment are much more potent in inducing supernumerary hair cells than Atoh1 overexpression and that the new hair cells mainly come from the trans-differentiation of supporting cells around hair cells. The orientation change of stereociliary bundle of hair cells may be attributed to the insertion of the newly formed hair cells. The immature hair bundles on the newly formed hair cells may also contribute to the overall chaos of the stereociliary bundle of the sensory epithelia.
Myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury is the major cause of morbidity and mortality for cardiovascular diseases. Dopamine D2 receptors are expressed in cardiac tissues. However, the roles of dopamine D2 receptors in myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury and cardiomyocyte apoptosis are unclear. Here we investigated the effects of both dopamine D2 receptors agonist (bromocriptine) and antagonist (haloperidol) on apoptosis of cultured neonatal rat ventricular myocytes induced by ischemia/reperfusion injury.
Myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury was simulated by incubating primarily cultured neonatal rat cardiomyocytes in ischemic (hypoxic) buffer solution for 2 h. Thereafter, these cells were incubated for 24 h in normal culture medium.
Treatment of the cardiomyocytes with 10 μM bromocriptine significantly decreased lactate dehydrogenase activity, increased superoxide dismutase activity, and decreased malondialdehyde content in the culture medium. Bromocriptine significantly inhibited the release of cytochrome c, accumulation of [Ca2+]i, and apoptosis induced by ischemia/reperfusion injury. Bromocriptine also down-regulated the expression of caspase-3 and -9, Fas and Fas ligand, and up-regulated Bcl-2 expression. In contrast, haloperidol (10 μM) had no significant effects on the apoptosis of cultured cardiomyocytes under the aforementioned conditions.
These data suggest that activation of dopamine D2 receptors can inhibit apoptosis of cardiomyocytes encountered during ischemia/reperfusion damage through various pathways.
Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) has caused large outbreaks worldwide in recent years, especially on the islands of the Indian Ocean and India. The virus is transmitted by mosquitoes (Aedes aegypti), which are widespread in China, with an especially high population density in southern China. Analyses of full-length viral sequences revealed the acquisition of a single adaptive mutation providing a selective advantage for the transmission of CHIKV by this species. No outbreaks due to the local transmission of CHIKV have been reported in China, and no cases of importation were detected on mainland China before 2008. We followed the spread of imported CHIKV in southern China and analyzed the genetic character of the detected viruses to evaluate their potential for evolution.
The importation of CHIKV to mainland China was first detected in 2008. The genomic sequences of four of the imported viruses were identified, and phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that the sequences were clustered in the Indian Ocean group; however, seven amino acid changes were detected in the nonstructural protein-coding region, and five amino acid changes were noted in the structural protein-coding regions. In particular, a novel substitution in E2 was detected (K252Q), which may impact the neurovirulence of CHIKV. The adaptive mutation A226V in E1 was observed in two imported cases of chikungunya disease.
Laboratory-confirmed CHIKV infections among travelers visiting China in 2008 were presented, new mutations in the viral nucleic acids and proteins may represent adaptive mutations for human or mosquito hosts.
The expression of heat-shock protein 60 (also known as chaperonin 60, Cpn60) in experimental acute pancreatitis (AP) is considered to play an active role in the prevention of abnormal enzyme accumulation and activation in pancreatic acinar cells. However, there are controversial results in the literature regarding the relationship between the abnormality of Cpn60 expression and AP onset and development. The purpose of this study was to investigate the alternations of Cpn60 expression and the relationship between the abnormal expression of Cpn60 and AP progression in rat severe acute pancreatitis (SAP) models. In this report, we induced SAP in Sprague–Dawley (SD) rats by reverse injection of sodium deoxycholate into the pancreatic duct, and examined the dynamic changes of Cpn60 expression in pancreatic tissues from different time points and at different levels with techniques of real-time PCR, western blotting, and immunohistochemistry. At 1 h after SAP induction, the expression of Cpn60 mRNA in the AP pancreatic tissues was higher than those in the sham-operation group and normal control group, but decreased sharply as the time period was extended, and there was a significant difference between 1 h and 10 h after SAP induction (p < 0.05). In the AP process, Cpn60 protein expression showed transient elevation as well, and the increased protein expression occurred predominantly in affected, but not totally destroyed, pancreatic acinar cells. As AP progressed, the pancreatic tissues were seriously damaged, leading to a decreased overall Cpn60 protein expression. Our results show a complex pattern of Cpn60 expression in pancreatic tissues of SAP rats, and the causality between the damage of pancreatic tissues and the decrease of Cpn60 level needs to be investigated further.
Acute pancreatitis; Chaperonin 60 (Cpn60); Pancreatic tissue; Experimental study
The long QT syndrome (LQTS) is a cardiac disorder characterized by prolongation of the QT interval on electrocardiograms (ECGs), syncope and sudden death caused by a specific ventricular tachyarrhythmia known as torsade de pointes. LQTS is caused by mutations in ion channel genes including the cardiac sodium channel gene SCN5A, and potassium channel subunit genes KCNQ1, KCNH2, KCNE1, and KCNE2. Little information is available about LQTS mutations in the Chinese population. In this study, we characterized 42 Chinese LQTS families for mutations in the two most common LQTS genes, KCNQ1 and KCNH2. We report here the identification of four novel KCNQ1 mutations and three novel KCNH2 mutations. The KCNQ1 mutations include L191P in the S2–S3 cytoplasmic loop, F275S and S277L in the S5 transmembrane domain, and G306V in the channel pore. The KCNH2 mutations include L413P in transmembrane domain S1, E444D in the extracellular loop between S1 and S2, and L559H in domain S5. The location and character of these mutations expand the spectrum of KCNQ1 and KCNH2 mutations causing LQTS. Excitement, exercises, and stress appear to be the triggers for developing cardiac events (syncope, sudden death) for LQTS patients with KCNQ1 mutations F275S, S277L, and G306V, and all three KCNH2 mutations L413P, E444D and L559H. In contrast, cardiac events for an LQTS patient with KCNQ1 mutation L191P occurred during sleep or awakening from sleep. KCNH2 mutations L413P and L559H are associated with the bifid T waves on ECGs. Inderal or propanolol (a beta blocker) appears to be effective in preventing arrhythmias and syncope for an LQTS patient with the KCNQ1 L191P mutation.
Long QT Syndrome; LQTS; cardiac arrhythmia; KCNQ1; KVLQT1; KCNH2; HERG; potassium channel; mutation; torsade de pointes; sudden death; ion channel; IKs, IKr
Studies in Western countries have repeatedly shown that women with a history of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) are at increased risk for developing major depression (MD). Would this relationship be found in China?
Three levels of CSA (non-genital, genital, and intercourse) were assessed by self-report in two groups of Han Chinese women: 1970 clinically ascertained with recurrent MD and 2597 matched controls. Diagnostic and other risk factor information was assessed at personal interview. Odds ratios (ORs) were calculated by logistic regression and regression coefficients by linear or Poisson regression.
Any form of CSA was significantly associated with recurrent MD [OR 3.26, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.95–5.45]. This association strengthened with increasing CSA severity: non-genital (OR 2.47, 95% CI 1.17–5.23), genital (OR 2.77, 95% CI 1.32–5.83) and intercourse (OR 13.35, 95% CI 1.83–97.42). The association between any form of CSA and MD remained significant after accounting for parental history of depression, childhood emotional neglect (CEN), childhood physical abuse (CPA) and parent–child relationship. Among the depressed women, those with CSA had an earlier age of onset, longer depressive episodes and an increased risk for generalized anxiety disorder (GAD; OR 1.92, 95% CI 1.39–2.66) and dysthymia (OR 2.16, 95% CI 1.52–3.09).
In Chinese women CSA is strongly associated with MD and this association increases with greater severity of CSA. Depressed women with CSA have an earlier age of onset, longer depressive episodes and increased co-morbidity with GAD and dysthymia. Although reporting biases cannot be ruled out, our results are consistent with the hypothesis that, as in Western countries, CSA substantially increases the risk for MD in China.
Childhood sexual abuse; co-morbidity; major depression
The relationship between recurrent major depression (MD) in women and suicidality is complex. We investigated the extent to which patients who suffered with various forms of suicidal symptomatology can be distinguished from those subjects without such symptoms.
We examined the clinical features of the worst episode in 1970 Han Chinese women with recurrent DSM-IV MD between the ages of 30 and 60 years from across China. Student's t tests, and logistic and multiple logistic regression models were used to determine the association between suicidality and other clinical features of MD.
Suicidal symptomatology is significantly associated with a more severe form of MD, as indexed by both the number of episodes and number of MD symptoms. Patients reporting suicidal thoughts, plans or attempts experienced a significantly greater number of stressful life events. The depressive symptom most strongly associated with lifetime suicide attempt was feelings of worthlessness (odds ratio 4.25, 95% confidence interval 2.9–6.3). Excessive guilt, diminished concentration and impaired decision-making were also significantly associated with a suicide attempt.
This study contributes to the existing literature on risk factors for suicidal symptomatology in depressed women. Identifying specific depressive symptoms and co-morbid psychiatric disorders may help improve the clinical assessment of suicide risk in depressed patients. These findings could be helpful in identifying those who need more intense treatment strategies in order to prevent suicide.
Co-morbidity; major depression; suicidal ideation; suicide; women
Somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) is an important method of breeding quality varieties, expanding groups, and preserving endangered species. However, the viability of SCNT embryos is poor, and the cloned rate of animal production is low in pig. This study aims to investigate the gene function and establish a disease model of Banna miniature inbred pig. SCNT with donor cells derived from fetal, newborn, and adult fibroblasts was performed, and the cloning efficiencies among the donor cells were compared. The results showed that the cleavage and blastocyst formation rates did not significantly differ between the reconstructed embryos derived from the fetal (74.3% and 27.4%) and newborn (76.4% and 21.8%) fibroblasts of the Banna miniature inbred pig (P>0.05). However, both fetal and newborn fibroblast groups showed significantly higher rates than the adult fibroblast group (61.9% and 13.0%; P<0.05). The pregnancy rates of the recipients in the fetal and newborn fibroblast groups (60% and 80%, respectively) were higher than those in the adult fibroblast group. Eight, three, and one cloned piglet were obtained from reconstructed embryos of the fetal, newborn, and adult fibroblasts, respectively. Microsatellite analyses results indicated that the genotypes of all cloning piglets were identical to their donor cells and that the genetic homozygosity of the Banna miniature inbred pig was higher than those of the recipients. Therefore, the offspring was successfully cloned using the fetal, newborn, and adult fibroblasts of Banna miniature inbred pig as donor cells.
Rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) have become an essential tool in the contemporary malaria control and management programmes in the world. This study aims to evaluate the performance of two commonly used RDTs for malaria diagnosis in the China-Myanmar border area.
A total 606 febrile patients in the China-Myanmar border were recruited to this study and were diagnosed for malaria infections by microscopy, two RDTs tests (Pf/Pan device, and Pv/Pf device) and nested PCR.
Malaria parasites were found in 143 patients by microscopy, of which 51, 73, and 19 were Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium vivax and P. falciparum/P. vivax mixed infections, respectively. Compared to microscopy, the sensitivity of the Pf/Pan device was 88.6% for P. falciparum and 69.9% for P. vivax with the specificity of 90.4%. For a subset of 350 patients, the sensitivity of the Pf/Pan device and Pv/Pf device for detection of P. falciparum was 87.5% and 91.7%, respectively; and for detection of P. vivax was 72.0% and 73.8%, respectively. The specificity of the Pf/Pan device and Pv/Pf device was 94.3% and 96.5%, respectively. Nested PCR detected malaria parasites in 174 of 606 samples, of which 67, 79, two and 26 were P. falciparum, P. vivax, P. ovale and P. falciparum/P. vivax mixed infections, respectively. Compared to nested PCR, all other methods had sensitivity below 80%, suggesting that a significant number of cases were missed.
Compared to PCR, both microscopy and RDTs had lower sensitivities. RDTs had similar performance to microscopy for P. falciparum diagnosis, but performed worse for P. vivax diagnosis. Other RDT products should be selected with higher sensitivity (and good specificity) for both P. falciparum and P. vivax diagnosis.
Rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs); Malaria diagnosis; Microscopy; PCR; Sensitivity; Specificity
Epidemiological studies have evaluated the association between nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH) oxidase p22phox C242T polymorphism and risk of ischemic cerebrovascular disease (ICVD), but the results remain inconclusive. This meta-analysis was therefore designed to clarify these controversies.
Systematic searches of electronic databases Embase, PubMed and Web of Science, as well as hand searching of the references of identified articles and the meeting abstracts were performed. Statistical analyses were performed using software Review Manager (Version 5.1.7) and Stata (Version 11.0). The pooled odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (95%CIs) were performed. Fixed or random effects model was separately used depending on the heterogeneity between studies. Publication bias was tested by Begg's funnel plot and Egger's regression test. A total of 6 studies including 1,948 cases and 2,357 controls were combined showing no statistical evidence of association between NADPH oxidase p22phox C242T polymorphism and overall ICVD (allelic model: OR = 1.08, 95%CI = 0.93–1.26; additive model: OR = 1.33, 95%CI = 0.81–2.17; dominant model: OR = 1.00, 95%CI = 0.86–1.15; recessive model: OR = 1.06, 95%CI = 0.77–1.45). Significant association was found in large-artery atherosclerotic stroke subgroup (allelic model: OR = 1.12, 95%CI = 0.88–1.41; additive model: OR = 1.36, 95%CI = 0.60–3.09; dominant model: OR = 1.25, 95%CI = 0.74–2.11; recessive model: OR = 2.17, 95%CI = 1.11–4.23). No statistical evidence of significant association was observed for small-vessel occlusive stroke, as well as Asian subgroup and Caucasian subgroup. Statistical powers on the combined sample size (total and subgroup) were all lower than 80%.
This meta-analysis indicates that NADPH oxidase p22phox C242T polymorphism is more associated with large-artery atherosclerotic stroke than small-vessel occlusive stroke. However, this conclusion should be interpreted with caution due to the small sample size. Larger sample-size studies with homogeneous ICVD patients and well-matched controls are required.
AML1-ETO fusion protein (AE) is generated by t(8;21)(q22;q22) chromosomal translocation, which is one of the most frequently observed structural abnormalities in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and displays a pivotal role in leukemogenesis. The histone acetyltransferase p300 promotes self-renewal of leukemia cells by acetylating AE and facilitating its downstream gene expression as a transcriptional coactivator, suggesting that p300 may be a potential therapeutic target for AE-positive AML. However, the effects of p300 inhibitors on leukemia cells and the underlying mechanisms have not been extensively investigated. In the current study, we analyzed the anti-leukemia effects of C646, a selective and competitive p300 inhibitor, on AML cells. Results showed that C646 inhibited cellular proliferation, reduced colony formation, evoked partial cell cycle arrest in G1 phase, and induced apoptosis in AE-positive AML cell lines and primary blasts isolated from leukemic mice and AML patients. Nevertheless, no significant inhibitory effects were observed in granulocyte colony-stimulating factor-mobilized normal peripheral blood stem cells. Notably, AE-positive AML cells were more sensitive to lower C646 doses than AE-negative ones. And C646-induced growth inhibition on AE-positive AML cells was associated with reduced global histone H3 acetylation and declined c-kit and bcl-2 levels. Therefore, C646 may be a potential candidate for treating AE-positive AML.
AIM: To investigate the associations between interleukin (IL)-1B and IL-1RN polymorphisms and gastric cancers among the Tibet, Hui and Han ethnicities.
METHODS: Genomic DNA was extracted from peripheral blood of 210, 205, and 202 healthy volunteers and from 155, 158, and 197 gastric cancer patients from the Tibet, Hui, and Han populations, respectively. Polymorphisms in IL-1B and IL-1RN were analyzed by denaturing high-performance liquid chromatography.
RESULTS: Carriers of the IL-1B-31 CC genotype had an increased risk of intestinal type gastric cancer [odds ratio (OR) = 2.17, P = 0.037] in the Tibet ethnicity. Carriers of the IL-1B 2/L genotype had an increased risk of both intestinal and diffuse types of gastric cancer (OR = 2.08, 2.31, P = 0.007, 0.016, respectively) in the Hui ethnicity. In the Han population, carriers of the IL-1B-31 CC, IL-1B-511CT, TT genotypes had increased risk of intestinal type gastric cancer (OR = 2.51, 2.74, 5.66, P = 0.005, 0.002, 0.000, respectively).
CONCLUSION: IL-1B and IL-RN genotypes may differentially contribute to gastric cancer among the Tibet, Hui, and Han ethnicities in the Qinghai area of China.
Gastric cancer; Interleukin-1B; Interleukin-1RN; Polymorphism; Risk of gastric cancer