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1.  Cytotoxicity of Aporphine, Protoberberine, and Protopine Alkaloids from Dicranostigma leptopodum (Maxim.) Fedde 
Nine alkaloids with three different structural skeletons were isolated from Dicranostigma leptopodum (Maxim.) Fedde (Papaveraceae) by repeated silica gel column chromatography. Their chemical structures were identified on the basic of physicochemical and spectroscopic data. Among them, 10-O-methylhernovine (1), nantenine (2), corytuberine (3), lagesianine A (4), and dihydrocryptopine (9) were first isolated from this plant. With a series of cytotoxic tests, compounds 2, 3, and 7 displayed cytotoxicity against SMMC-7721 with IC50 values of 70.08 ± 4.63, 73.22 ± 2.35, and 27.77 ± 2.29 μM, respectively.
doi:10.1155/2014/580483
PMCID: PMC4055583  PMID: 24963327
2.  Direct writing of graphene patterns on insulating substrates under ambient conditions 
Scientific Reports  2014;4:4892.
To unleash the full potential of graphene in electronics and optoelectronics, high-quality graphene patterns on insulating substrates are required. However, existing methods generally follow a “synthesis + patterning” strategy, which are time consuming and costly for fabricating high-quality graphene patterns on desired substrates. We developed a nanofabrication process to deposit high-quality graphene patterns directly on insulating substrates via a solid-phase laser direct writing (LDW) process. Open-air and room-temperature fabrication of graphene patterns on insulating substrates has been achieved via a femtosecond LDW process without graphene transfer and patterning. Various graphene patterns, including texts, spirals, line arrays, and integrated circuit patterns, with a feature line width of 800 nm and a low sheet resistance of 205 ohm/sq, were fabricated. The LDW method provides a facile and cost-effective way to fabricate complex and high-quality graphene patterns directly on target substrates, which opens a door for fabricating various advanced functional devices.
doi:10.1038/srep04892
PMCID: PMC4013930  PMID: 24809639
3.  Superior border of the arcuate line: Three dimension reconstruction and digital measurements of the fixation route for pelvic and acetabular fractures 
International Orthopaedics  2013;37(5):889-897.
Purpose
To obtain a series of parameters describing the shape and bone thickness of the fixation route along the superior border of the arcuate line, so as to provide references for pelvic and acetabular surgery and design pelvic anatomic internal fixators.
Method
A total of 175 complete pelvic computed tomography (CT) scans of normal adult pelvises were collected. Each person’s CT scans were reconstructed to create a three-dimensional pelvic model. A curve of the fixation route was delineated and divided into 11 equal parts. The total length of the curve, the radius of curvature, and the bone thickness at each decile point were all measured. The position of the pelvic inlet, the anterior and posterior sagittal diameter were measured.
Results
The radius of curvature at each decile point were 29.18 ± 15.53, 55.27 ± 29.48, 43.04 ± 14.42, 59.62 ± 21.02, 91.67 ± 52.01, 78.9 ± 38.66, 75.76 ± 25.87, 61.75 ± 16.68, 54.62 ± 14.88, and 43.61 ± 19.10 mm, respectively. The anterior and posterior sagittal diameter of the pelvic inlet was 66.01 ± 9.15 and 41.36 ± 8.19 mm, respectively. For all groups divided by the ratio of the posterior and the anterior sagittal diameter, the decile points 1, 3, and 10 had smaller radii of curvature than the before and after points, respectively.
Conclusions
The curve of the fixation route along superior border of arcuate line has a relatively greater bending degree at the pubic tubercle, iliopubic eminence and close to the sacroiliac joint. With the transition of the pelvic inlet shape from android to gynecoid and platypelloid type, the bone surface at the iliopubic eminence becomes flatter. Pelvic and acetabular surgery could be more accurate by referring to the previous key bending points and the change of the pelvic inlet shape.
doi:10.1007/s00264-013-1804-x
PMCID: PMC3631479  PMID: 23385608
4.  Diversity and Antimicrobial Activity of Culturable Endophytic Fungi Isolated from Moso Bamboo Seeds 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(4):e95838.
Bamboos, regarded as therapeutic agents in ethnomedicine, have been used to inhibit inflammation and enhance natural immunity for a long time in Asia, and there are many bamboo associated fungi with medical and edible value. In the present study, a total of 350 fungal strains were isolated from the uncommon moso bamboo (Phyllostachys edulis) seeds for the first time. The molecular diversity of these endophytic fungi was investigated and bioactive compound producers were screened for the first time. All the fungal endophytes were categorized into 69 morphotypes according to culturable characteristics and their internal transcriber spacer (ITS) regions were analyzed by BLAST search with the NCBI database. The fungal isolates showed high diversity and were divided in Ascomycota (98.0%) and Basidiomycota (2.0%), including at least 19 genera in nine orders. Four particular genera were considered to be newly recorded bambusicolous fungi, including Leptosphaerulina, Simplicillium, Sebacina and an unknown genus in Basidiomycetes. Furthermore, inhibitory effects against clinical pathogens and phytopathogens were screened preliminarily and strains B09 (Cladosporium sp.), B34 (Curvularia sp.), B35 (undefined genus 1), B38 (Penicillium sp.) and zzz816 (Shiraia sp.) displayed broad-spectrum activity against clinical bacteria and yeasts by the agar diffusion method. The crude extracts of isolates B09, B34, B35, B38 and zzz816 under submerged fermentation, also demonstrated various levels of bioactivities against bambusicolous pathogenic fungi. This study is the first report on the antimicrobial activity of endophytic fungi associated with moso bamboo seeds, and the results show that they could be exploited as a potential source of bioactive compounds and plant defense activators. In addition, it is the first time that strains of Shiraia sp. have been isolated and cultured from moso bamboo seeds, and one of them (zzz816) could produce hypocrellin A at high yield, which is significantly different from the other strains published.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0095838
PMCID: PMC3997407  PMID: 24759896
5.  The relationship between job performance and perceived organizational support in faculty members at Chinese universities: a questionnaire survey 
BMC Medical Education  2014;14:50.
Background
Although several studies have been conducted to investigate the relationship between perceived organizational support (POS) and job performance (JP), it remains unclear whether this relationship is appropriate for faculty members at Chinese universities. The objectives of this study were to (a) examine the correlation between POS andJP; (b) identify the predictors of POS, including demographic and organizational characteristics among faculty members at a Chinese university; (c) investigate the influence of mediating factors between POS and JP; and (d) compare the findings of this study with related studies.
Methods
A cross-sectional questionnaire survey was used in this study. The questionnaire was administered to 700 faculty members who were randomly selected from all faculty members at six universities. A total of 581 questionnaires were obtained. A statistical model for JP was developed based on the literature review.
Results
The analysis results indicated that the relationship between POS and JP was mediated by job satisfaction (JS), positive affectivity (PA), and affective commitment (AC). In addition, procedural and distributive justice contribute to POS.
Conclusions
The study concludes that the relationship between POS and JP is mediated by JS, PA, and AC and is influenced by POS. These results can provide evidence for university administrators to improve POS and increase the JP of faculty members at universities.
doi:10.1186/1472-6920-14-50
PMCID: PMC4008306  PMID: 24624932
Job performance; Perceived organizational support; Chinese university; Faculty members
6.  Baicalin Protects the Cardiomyocytes from ER Stress-Induced Apoptosis: Inhibition of CHOP through Induction of Endothelial Nitric Oxide Synthase 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(2):e88389.
Baicalin, the main active ingredient of the Scutellaria root, exerts anti-oxidant and anti-apoptotic effects in cardiovascular diseases. However, the therapeutic mechanism of baicalin remains unknown. Cultured neonatal rat cardiomyocytes were pre-treated with baicalin (0–50 µM) for 24 h, and subsequently treated with tunicamycin (100 ng/ml). Cell viability was detected by MTT assay, and cell damage was determined by LDH release and TUNEL assay. The expression of CHOP, JNK, caspase-3, eNOS was analyzed by western blot. NO was measured by DAF-FM staining. As a result, treatment with baicalin significantly reduced apoptosis induced by ER stress inducer tunicamycin in cardiomyocytes. Molecularly, baicalin ameliorated tunicamycin-induced ER stress by downregulation of CHOP. In addition, baicalin inverted tunicamycin-induced decreases of eNOS mRNA and protein levels, phospho eNOS and NO production through CHOP pathway. However, the protective effects of baicalin were significantly decreased in cardiomyocytes treated with L-NAME, which suppressed activation of nitric oxide synthase. In conclusion, our results implicate that baicalin could protect cardiomyocytes from ER stress-induced apoptosis via CHOP/eNOS/NO pathway, and suggest the therapeutic values of baicalin against ER stress-associated cardiomyocyte apoptosis.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0088389
PMCID: PMC3919764  PMID: 24520378
7.  Novel esophageal squamous cell carcinoma bone metastatic clone isolated by scintigraphy, X ray and micro PET/CT 
AIM: To establish a Chinese esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) cell line with high bone metastasis potency using 99mTc-methylene diphosphonate (99mTc-MDP) micro-pinhole scintigraphy, X ray and micro-positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) for exploring the mechanism of occurrence and development in esophageal cancer.
METHODS: The cells came from a BALB/c nu/nu immunodeficient mouse, and oncogenic tumor tissue was from a surgical specimen from a 61-year-old male patient with ESCC. The cell growth curve was mapped and analysis of chromosome karyotype was performed. Approximately 1 × 106 oncogenic cells were injected into the left cardiac ventricle of immunodeficient mice. The bone metastatic lesions of tumor-bearing mice were detected by 99mTc-MDP scintigraphy, micro-PET/CT and X-ray, and were resected from the mice under deep anesthesia. The bone metastatic cells in the lesions were used for culture and for repeated intracardiac inoculation. This in vivo/in vitro experimental metastasis study was repeated for four cycles. All of the suspicious bone sites were confirmed by pathology. Real-time polymerase chain reaction was used to compare the gene expression in the parental cells and in the bone metastatic clone.
RESULTS: The surgical specimen was implanted subcutaneously in immunodeficient mice and the tumorigenesis rate was 100%. First-passage oncogenic cells were named CEK-Sq-1. The chromosome karyotype analysis of the cell line was hypotriploid. The bone metastasis rate went from 20% with the first-passage oncogenic cells via intracardiac inoculation to 90% after four cycles. The established bone metastasis clone named CEK-Sq-1BM had a high potential to metastasize in bone, including mandible, humerus, thoracic and lumbar vertebrae, scapula and femur. The bone metastasis lesions were successfully detected by micro-pinhole bone scintigraphy, micro-PET/CT, and X-ray. The sensitivity, specificity and accuracy of the micro-pinhole scintigraphy, X-ray, and micro-PET/CT imaging examinations were: 89.66%/32%/80%, 88.2%/100%/89.2%, and 88.75%/77.5%/87.5%, respectively. Some gene expression difference was found between parental and bone metastasis cells.
CONCLUSION: This newly established Chinese ESCC cell line and animal model may provide a useful tool for the study of the pathogenesis and development of esophageal carcinoma.
doi:10.3748/wjg.v20.i4.1030
PMCID: PMC3921526  PMID: 24574775
Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma; Cell line; Bone metastasis; Molecular imaging; Real-time polymerase chain reaction
8.  Serum Potassium Levels and Its Variability in Incident Peritoneal Dialysis Patients: Associations with Mortality 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(1):e86750.
Background
Abnormal serum potassium is associated with an increased risk of mortality in dialysis patients. However, the impacts of serum potassium levels on short- and long-term mortality and association of potassium variability with death in peritoneal dialysis (PD) patients are uncertain.
Methods
We examined mortality-predictability of serum potassium at baseline and its variability in PD patients treated in our center January 2006 through December 2010 with follow-up through December 2012. The hazard ratios (HRs) were used to assess the relationship between baseline potassium levels and short-term (≤1 year) as well as long-term (>1 year) survival. Variability of serum potassium was defined as the coefficient of variation of serum potassium (CVSP) during the first year of PD.
Results
A total of 886 incident PD patients were enrolled, with 248 patients (27.9%) presented hypokalemia (serum potassium <3.5 mEq/L). During a median follow-up of 31 months (range: 0.5–81.0 months), adjusted all-cause mortality hazard ratio (HR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) for baseline serum potassium of <3.0, 3.0 to <3.5, 3.5 to <4.0, 4.5 to <5.0, and ≥5.0 mEq/L, compared with 4.0 to <4.5 (reference), were 1.79 (1.02–3.14), 1.15 (0.72–1.86), 1.31 (0.82–2.08), 1.33 (0.71–2.48), 1.28 (0.53–3.10), respectively. The increased risk of lower potassium with mortality was evident during the first year of follow-up, but vanished thereafter. Adjusted all-cause mortality HR for CVSP increments of 7.5% to <12.0%; 12.0% to <16.7% and ≥16.7%, compared with <7.5% (reference), were 1.35 (0.67–2.71), 2.00 (1.05–3.83) and 2.18 (1.18–4.05), respectively. Similar association was found between serum potassium levels and its variability and cardiovascular mortality.
Conclusions
A lower serum potassium level was associated with all-cause and cardiovascular mortality during the first year of follow-up in incident PD patients. In addition, higher variability of serum potassium levels conferred an increased risk of death in this population.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0086750
PMCID: PMC3903570  PMID: 24475176
9.  Epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition markers to predict response of Berberine in suppressing lung cancer invasion and metastasis 
Background
The effects of berberine on the metastatic potential of lung cancer cells and its underlying mechanisms have not been fully elucidated. Since epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition is a cellular process associated with cancer invasion and metastasis, we attempted to investigate the potential use of berberine as an inhibitor of TGF-β1-induced epithelial-to-mesenchymal in A549 cells.
Methods
In this study, we investigated the anticancer activity of berberine against A549 cells in vitro and in vivo. BBR-induced apoptosis of the human lung cancer cells was determined by flow cytometry. The ability of BBR to inhibit TGF-β-induced EMT was examined by QRT-PCR and Western blotting. The impact of BBR on A549 cell migration and invasion was evaluated by transwell assay.
Results
We demonstrated that TGF-β1 induced epithelial-to-mesenchymal to promote lung cancer invasion and metastasis. Berberine inhibited invasion and migration of A549 cells, increased expression of the epithelial phenotype marker E-cadherin, repressed the expression of the mesenchymal phenotype marker Vimentin, as well as decreased the level of epithelial-to-mesenchymal -inducing transcription factors Snail1 and Slug during the initiation of TGF-β1-induced epithelial-to-mesenchymal. Furthermore, berberine inhibited growth of lung cancer cells in vivo xenograft.
Conclusions
Our findings provided new evidence that berberine is an effective inhibitor of the metastatic potential of A549 cells through suppression of TGF-β1-induced epithelial-to-mesenchymal.
doi:10.1186/1479-5876-12-22
PMCID: PMC3944941  PMID: 24456611
Lung neoplasms; Berberine; Invasiveness; Epithelial-mesenchymal transition; Transforming growth factor beta1
10.  Relationships between HDL-C, hs-CRP, with Central Arterial Stiffness in Apparently Healthy People Undergoing a General Health Examination 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(12):e81778.
Background
Some cardiovascular risk factors have been confirmed to be positively correlated with arterial stiffness. However, it is unclear whether HDL-C, a well-established anti-risk factor, has an independent association with arterial stiffness. The aim of this study was to evaluate the relationship between HDL-C levels and arterial stiffness and the possible role of high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) in this potential correlation in apparently healthy adults undergoing a general health examination in China.
Materials and Methods
This was a cross-sectional survey. In total, 15,302 participants (age range, 18–82 years; mean, 43.88±8.44 years) were recruited during routine health status examinations. A questionnaire was used and we measured the body mass index, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and fasting glucose, and serum lipid, uric acid, hs-CRP, and serum creatinine levels of each participant. Central arterial stiffness was assessed by carotid–femoral pulse wave velocity (cf-PWV).
Results
HDL-C levels decreased as cf-PWV increased. Pearson’s correlation analysis revealed that HDL-C levels were associated with cf-PWV (r=−0.18, P<0.001). hs-CRP levels were positively associated with cf-PWV (r=0.13). After adjustment for all confounders, HDL-C was inversely independently associated with all quartiles of cf-PWV. Furthermore, HDL-C was associated with cf-PWV in different quartiles of hs-CRP, and the correlation coefficients (r) gradually decreased with increasing hs-CRP levels (quartiles 1–4).
Conclusions
HDL-C is inversely independently associated with central arterial stiffness. The anti-inflammatory activity of HDL-C may mediate its relationship with cf-PWV. Further, long-term follow-up studies are needed to evaluate whether high HDL-C levels are protective against central artery stiffening through the anti-inflammatory activity of HDL-C.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0081778
PMCID: PMC3849294  PMID: 24312587
12.  IQdb: an intelligence quotient score-associated gene resource for human intelligence 
Intelligence quotient (IQ) is the most widely used phenotype to characterize human cognitive abilities. Recent advances in studies on human intelligence have identified many new susceptibility genes. However, the genetic mechanisms involved in IQ score and the relationship between IQ score and the risk of mental disorders have won little attention. To address the genetic complexity of IQ score, we have developed IQdb (http://IQdb.cbi.pku.edu.cn), a publicly available database for exploring IQ-associated human genes. In total, we collected 158 experimental verified genes from literature as a core dataset in IQdb. In addition, 46 genomic regions related to IQ score have been curated from literature. Based on the core dataset and 46 confirmed linked genomic regions, more than 6932 potential IQ-related genes are expanded using data of protein–protein interactions. A systematic gene ranking approach was applied to all the collected and expanded genes to represent the relative importance of all the 7090 genes in IQdb. Our further systematic pathway analysis reveals that IQ-associated genes are significantly enriched in multiple signal events, especially related to cognitive systems. Of the 158 genes in the core dataset, 81 are involved in various psychotic and mental disorders. This comprehensive gene resource illustrates the importance of IQdb to our understanding on human intelligence, and highlights the utility of IQdb for elucidating the functions of IQ-associated genes and the cross-talk mechanisms among cognition-related pathways in some mental disorders for community.
Database URL: http://IQdb.cbi.pku.edu.cn.
doi:10.1093/database/bat063
PMCID: PMC3770929  PMID: 24030781
13.  Evaluation of PCR in Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid for Diagnosis of Pneumocystis jirovecii Pneumonia: A Bivariate Meta-Analysis and Systematic Review 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(9):e73099.
Background
As a promising tool, PCR in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) has not been accepted as a diagnostic criterion for PJP.
Objective
We undertook a systematic review of published studies to evaluate the diagnostic accuracy of PCR assays in BALF for PJP.
Methods
Eligible studies from PubMed, Embase and Web of Science reporting PCR assays in BALF for diagnosing PJP were identified. A bivariate meta-analysis of the method’s sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative likelihood ratios with a 95% confidence interval (CI) were analyzed. The post-test probability was performed to evaluate clinical usefulness. A summary receiver operating characteristics (SROC) curve was used to evaluate overall performance. Subgroup analyses were carried out to analysis the potential heterogeneity.
Results
Sixteen studies published between 1994 and 2012 were included. The summary sensitivity and specificity values (95% CI) of PCR in BALF for diagnosis of PJP were 98.3% (91.3%–99.7%) and 91.0% (82.7%–95.5%), respectively. The positive and negative likelihood ratios were 10.894 (5.569–21.309) and 0.018 (0.003–0.099), respectively. In a setting of 20% prevalence of PJP, the probability of PJP would be over 3-fold if the BALF-PCR test was positive, and the probability of PJP would be less than 0.5% if it was negative. The area under the SROC curve was 0.98 (0.97–0.99).
Conclusions
The method of PCR in BALF shows high sensitivity and good specificity for the diagnosis of PJP. However, clinical practice for the diagnosis of PJP should consider the consistent respiratory symptoms, radiographic changes and laboratory findings of the suspected patients.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0073099
PMCID: PMC3762835  PMID: 24023814
14.  Targeting the brain with PEG-PLGA nanoparticles modified with phage-displayed peptides 
Biomaterials  2011;32(21):4943-4950.
The relative impermeability of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) results from tight junctions and efflux transport systems limits drug delivery to the central nervous system (CNS), and thus severely restricts the therapy of many central nervous system diseases. In order to enhance the brain-specific drug delivery, we employed a 12-mer phage display peptide library to isolate peptides that could target the drug delivery system to the brain. A 12-amino-acid-peptide (denoted as Pep TGN) which was displayed by bacteriophage Clone 12-2 was finally selected by rounds of in vivo screening. Pep TGN was covalently conjugated onto the surface of poly (ethyleneglycol)-poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PEG-PLGA) based nanoparticles (NPs). The cellular uptake of Pep TGN decorated nanoparticles was significantly higher than that of unmodified nanoparticles when incubated with bEnd.3 cells. Enhanced brain accumulation efficiency together with lower accumulation in liver and spleen was observed in the nude mice intravenously injected with Pep TGN conjugated nanoparticles compared with those injected with plain nanoparticles, showing powerful brain selectivity of Pep TGN. Coumarin 6 was used as a fluorescent probe for the evaluation of brain delivery properties. The brain Drug Targeting Index (DTI) of coumarin 6 incorporated in targeted nanoparticles was significantly higher than that of coumarin 6 incorporated in plain nanoparticles. In conclusion, the Pep TGN is a motif never been reported before and Pep TGN modified nanoparticles showed great potential in targeted drug delivery across the blood brain barrier.
doi:10.1016/j.biomaterials.2011.03.031
PMCID: PMC3727047  PMID: 21470674
Phage display; blood-brain barrier (BBB); brain delivery; biodegradable nanoparticle
15.  GNPs-CS/KGM as Hemostatic First Aid Wound Dressing with Antibiotic Effect: In Vitro and In Vivo Study 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(7):e66890.
Ideal wound dressing materials should create a good healing environment, with immediate hemostatic effects and antimicrobial activity. In this study, chitosan/konjac glucomannan (CS/KGM) films embedded with gentamicin-loaded poly(dex-GMA/AAc) nanoparticles (giving GNP-CS/KGM films) were prepared as novel wound dressings. The results revealed that the modified CS/KGM films could be used as effective wound dressings and had significant hemostatic effects. With their microporous structure, the films could effectively absorb water from blood and trap blood cells. The gentamicinloaded poly(dex-GMA/AAc) nanoparticles (GNPs) also further promoted blood clotting, with their favorable water uptake capacity. Thus, the GNP-CS/KGM films had wound healing and synergistic effects that helped to stop bleeding from injuries, and also showed good antibiotic abilities by addition of gentamicin to the NPs. These GNPCS/KGM films can be considered as promising novel biodegradable and biocompatible wound dressings with hemostatic capabilities and antibiotic effects for treatment of external bleeding injuries.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0066890
PMCID: PMC3713006  PMID: 23874402
16.  Correction: Human Papillomavirus Up-Regulates MMP-2 and MMP-9 Expression and Activity by Inducing Interleukin-8 in Lung Adenocarcinomas 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(6):10.1371/annotation/a50fa759-93fb-444d-9523-9d4a805ef898.
doi:10.1371/annotation/a50fa759-93fb-444d-9523-9d4a805ef898
PMCID: PMC3681507
17.  Simultaneous Determination of Benzene and Toluene in Pesticide Emulsifiable Concentrate by Headspace GC-MS 
The toxic inert ingredients in pesticide formulations are strictly regulated in many countries. In this paper, a simple and efficient headspace-gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (HSGC-MS) method using fluorobenzene as an internal standard (IS) for rapid simultaneous determination of benzene and toluene in pesticide emulsifiable concentrate (EC) was established. The headspace and GC-MS conditions were investigated and developed. A nonpolar fused silica Rtx-5 capillary column (30 m × 0.20 mm i.d. and 0.25 μm film thickness) with temperature programming was used. Under optimized headspace conditions, equilibration temperature of 120°C, equilibration time of 5 min, and sample size of 50 μL, the regression of the peak area ratios of benzene and toluene to IS on the concentrations of analytes fitted a linear relationship well at the concentration levels ranging from 3.2 g/L to 16.0 g/L. Standard additions of benzene and toluene to blank different matrix solutions 1ead to recoveries of 100.1%–109.5% with a relative standard deviation (RSD) of 0.3%–8.1%. The method presented here stands out as simple and easily applicable, which provides a way for the determination of toxic volatile adjuvant in liquid pesticide formulations.
doi:10.1155/2013/121783
PMCID: PMC3626381  PMID: 23607048
18.  Prevalence of and risk factors for aspirin resistance in elderly patients with coronary artery disease 
Objective
To assess the prevalence of and related risk factors for aspirin resistance in elderly patients with coronary artery disease (CAD).
Methods
Two hundred and forty-six elderly patients (75.9 ± 7.4 years) with CAD who received daily aspirin therapy (≥ 75 mg) over one month were recruited. The effect of aspirin was assessed using light transmission aggregometry (LTA) and thrombelastography platelet mapping assay (TEG). Aspirin resistance was defined as ≥ 20% arachidonic acid (AA)-induced aggregation and ≥ 70% adenosine diphosphate (ADP)-induced aggregation in the LTA assay. An aspirin semi-responder was defined as meeting one (but not both) of the criteria described above. Based on the results of TEG, aspirin resistance was defined as ≥ 50% aggregation induced by AA.
Results
As determined by LTA, 23 (9.3%) of the elderly CAD patients were resistant to aspirin therapy; 91 (37.0%) were semi-responders. As determined by TEG, 61 patients (24.8%) were aspirin resistant. Of the 61 patients who were aspirin resistant by TEG, 19 were aspirin resistant according to LTA results. Twenty-four of 91 semi-responders by LTA were aspirin resistant by TEG. Multivariate logistic regression analysis revealed that elevated fasting serum glucose level (Odds ratio: 1.517; 95% CI: 1.176–1.957; P = 0.001) was a significant risk factor for aspirin resistance as determined by TEG.
Conclusions
A significant number of elderly patients with CAD are resistant to aspirin therapy. Fasting blood glucose level is closely associated with aspirin resistance in elderly CAD patients.
doi:10.3969/j.issn.1671-5411.2013.01.005
PMCID: PMC3627718  PMID: 23610570
Aspirin resistance; Coronary artery disease; Risk factors
19.  Effects of Heme Oxygenase-1 Upregulation on Blood Pressure and Cardiac Function in an Animal Model of Hypertensive Myocardial Infarction 
In this study, we evaluate the effect of HO-1 upregulation on blood pressure and cardiac function in the new model of infarct spontaneous hypertensive rats (ISHR). Male spontaneous hypertensive rats (SHR) at 13 weeks (n = 40) and age-matched male Wistar (WT) rats (n = 20) were divided into six groups: WT (sham + normal saline (NS)), WT (sham + Co(III) Protoporphyrin IX Chloride (CoPP)), SHR (myocardial infarction (MI) + NS), SHR (MI + CoPP), SHR (MI + CoPP + Tin Mesoporphyrin IX Dichloride (SnMP)), SHR (sham + NS); CoPP 4.5 mg/kg, SnMP 15 mg/kg, for six weeks, one/week, i.p., n = 10/group. At the sixth week, echocardiography (UCG) and hemodynamics were performed. Then, blood samples and heart tissue were collected. Copp treatment in the SHR (MI + CoPP) group lowered blood pressure, decreased infarcted area, restored cardiac function (left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF), left ventricular fraction shortening (LVFS), +dp/dtmax, (−dp/dtmax)/left ventricular systolic pressure (LVSP)), inhibited cardiac hypertrophy and ventricular enlargement (downregulating left ventricular end-systolic diameter (LVEDD), left ventricular end-systolic diameter (LVESD) and heart weight/body weight (HW/BW)), lowered serum CRP, IL-6 and Glu levels and increased serum TB, NO and PGI2 levels. Western blot and immunohistochemistry showed that HO-1 expression was elevated in the SHR (MI + CoPP) group, while co-administration with SnMP suppressed the benefit functions mentioned above. In conclusion, HO-1 upregulation can lower blood pressure and improve post-infarct cardiac function in the ISHR model. These functions may be involved in the inhibition of inflammation and the ventricular remodeling process and in the amelioration of glucose metabolism and endothelial dysfunction.
doi:10.3390/ijms14022684
PMCID: PMC3588009  PMID: 23358254
hypertension; myocardial infarction; heme oxygenase; bilirubin
20.  Human Papillomavirus Up-Regulates MMP-2 and MMP-9 Expression and Activity by Inducing Interleukin-8 in Lung Adenocarcinomas 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(1):e54423.
Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection is associated with non-smoking female lung cancer. Our previous report demonstrated that HPV 16 promotes lung tumor cell progression by up-regulating interleukin-17 (IL-17). IL-17 and its downstream signaling mediator, interleukin-8 (IL-8), have been implicated to modulate a variety of pro-angiogenic factors and play important roles in tumor angiogenesis and metastasis. Accordingly, we hypothesized that HPV infection may potentiate tumorigenic and metastatic characteristics of the infected cells through IL-8. The goal of the present study was to determine whether HPV infection in lung adenocarcinoma cells can promote the expression of IL-8 and metalloproteinases (MMPs) to make the transformed cells equipped with angiogenic and metastatic characteristics. The expression of IL-8 and MMPs in HPV 16 E6-transfected H1299 cells was analyzed to examine the hypothesis. HPV 16 E6 up-regulates pro-angiogenic MMP-2 and MMP-9 through inducing IL-8 expression in lung cancer cells. The results indicate that, in addition to cell proliferation-related machinery, HPV infection promotes the expression and activities of angiogenic and metastatic molecules in lung adenocarcinoma cells. The cytokines induced by HPV infection may work together to confer the malignant and tumorigenic potentials on the infected cells by promoting machineries of growth, angiogenic and metastatic characteristics.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0054423
PMCID: PMC3549962  PMID: 23349885
21.  Cardiovascular and cerebrovascular outcomes in elderly hypertensive patients treated with either ARB or ACEI 
Background
Although angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEI) and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARB) are equally important in the treatment of hypertension, there is less evidence whether they have equal cardiovascular and cerebrovascular protective effects, especially in elder hypertensive patients. This study aims to clarify this unresolved issue.
Methods
This cross-sectional study included clinical data on 933 aged male patients with hypertension who received either an ARB or ACEI for more than two months between January 2007 and May 2011. The primary outcome was the composite of cardiovascular death, non-fatal myocardial infarction, and non-fatal stroke. The secondary endpoints were unstable angina, new atrial fibrillation, and transient ischemic attack.
Results
The median follow-up time was 24 months. Age, drug types, cerebral infarction history, renal dysfunction history were the independent predictors of the primary endpoint. The risk of an occurrence of a primary endpoint event was higher in the ARB group than the ACEI group [P = 0.037, hazard ratios (HR): 2.124, 95% confidence interval (95% CI): 1.048–4.306]. The Kaplan-Meier method also suggests that the rate of primary endpoint occurrence was higher in the ARB group than the ACEI group (P = 0.04). In regard to the secondary endpoints, there were no significant differences between the two treatment arms (P = 0.137, HR: 1.454, 95% CI: 0.888–2.380). Patient age and coronary heart disease history were independent predictors of the secondary endpoint.
Conclusion
ACEI were more effective than ARB in reducing cardiovascular and cerebrovascular morbidity and mortality in aged patients with hypertension.
doi:10.3724/SP.J.1263.2011.12031
PMCID: PMC3470024  PMID: 23097655
Angiotensin receptor blocker; Angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor; Renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system; Angiotensin type 2 receptor
22.  Association of cardiac and renal function with extreme N-terminal fragment Pro-B-type natriuretic peptide levels in elderly patients 
Background
The data are inconsistent regarding whether extreme N-terminal fragment pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT pro-BNP) levels are associated with impaired renal function. Furthermore, the relationship between extreme NT pro-BNP levels and cardiac and renal function in elderly patients has not been reported. The aim of the present study was to examine a hypothesis that extreme NT pro-BNP levels may be associated with impaired cardiac and renal function in elderly patients.
Methods
We retrospectively analyzed the data of demographic, clinical, and echocardiographic features on 152 consecutive elderly patients aged more than 80 years old (average age, 83.65 ± 3.58 years) with NT pro-BNP levels ≥ 3000 pg/ml. The participants were divided into two categories according to their NT pro-BNP levels: (1) 3000–10000 pg/mL and (2) >10000 pg /mL.
Results
The number of patients with impaired renal function (P = 0.019) and the mortality (P < 0.001) in the period of inpatient was higher in the group with NT pro-BNP > 10000 pg /mL. The levels of serum creatinine and creatine kinase MB (CK-MB) in the group of NT pro-BNP > 10000 pg / mL were higher than those in the group of NT pro-BNP = 3000-10000 pg/mL (P = 0.001 and P = 0.023, respectively). Furthermore, no significant difference in the distribution by NYHA class in different NT pro-BNP levels was observed. Multiple linear regression analyses demonstrated that with NT pro-BNP levels as the dependent variable, NT pro-BNP levels were positively correlated with CK-MB (β = 0.182, P = 0.024) and creatinine levels (β = 0.281, P = 0.001). The area under the receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) curve of NT pro-BNP levels and clinical diagnosis of impaired renal function was 0.596 and reached significant difference (95%CI:0.503-0.688, P = 0.044).
Conclusion
These data suggest that the extreme elevation of NT pro-BNP levels (≥3000 pg/ml) is mainly determined by impaired renal function in elderly patients above 80 years. Extreme NT pro-BNP levels may be useful for assessing the severity of impaired renal function.
doi:10.1186/1471-2261-12-57
PMCID: PMC3422193  PMID: 22834778
NT pro-BNP; Factors; Elderly; Impaired renal function
23.  pVHL Mediates K63-Linked Ubiquitination of nCLU 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(4):e35848.
pVHL, product of von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) tumor suppressor gene, functions as the substrate recognition component of an E3-ubiquitin ligase that targets proteins for ubiquitination and proteasomal degradation. Hypoxia-inducible factor α (HIFα) is the well-known substrate of pVHL. Besides HIFα, pVHL also binds to many other proteins and has multiple functions. In this manuscript, we report that the nuclear clusterin (nCLU) is a target of pVHL. We found that pVHL had a direct interaction with nCLU. nCLU bound to pVHL at pVHL's β domain, the site for recognition of substrate, indicating that nCLU might be a substrate of pVHL. Interestingly, pVHL bound to nCLU but did not lead to nCLU destruction. Further studies indicated that pVHL mediated K63-linked ubiquitination of nCLU and promoted nCLU nuclear translocation. In summary, our results disclose a novel function of pVHL that mediates K63-linked ubiquitination and identify nCLU as a new target of pVHL.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0035848
PMCID: PMC3332038  PMID: 22532874
24.  Combination of TRAIL and actinomycin D liposomes enhances antitumor effect in non-small cell lung cancer 
The intractability of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) to multimodality treatments plays a large part in its extremely poor prognosis. Tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) is a promising cytokine for selective induction of apoptosis in cancer cells; however, many NSCLC cell lines are resistant to TRAIL-induced apoptosis. The therapeutic effect can be restored by treatments combining TRAIL with chemotherapeutic agents. Actinomycin D (ActD) can sensitize NSCLC cells to TRAIL-induced apoptosis by upregulation of death receptor 4 (DR4) or 5 (DR5). However, the use of ActD has significant drawbacks due to the side effects that result from its nonspecific biodistribution in vivo. In addition, the short half-life of TRAIL in serum also limits the antitumor effect of treatments combining TRAIL and ActD. In this study, we designed a combination treatment of long-circulating TRAIL liposomes and ActD liposomes with the aim of resolving these problems. The combination of TRAIL liposomes and ActD liposomes had a synergistic cytotoxic effect against A-549 cells. The mechanism behind this combination treatment includes both increased expression of DR5 and caspase activation. Moreover, systemic administration of the combination of TRAIL liposomes and ActD liposomes suppressed both tumor formation and growth of established subcutaneous NSCLC xenografts in nude mice, inducing apoptosis without causing significant general toxicity. These results provide preclinical proof-of-principle for a novel therapeutic strategy in which TRAIL liposomes are safely combined with ActD liposomes.
doi:10.2147/IJN.S24711
PMCID: PMC3356168  PMID: 22619505
TRAIL; actinomycin D; liposomes; combination treatment; non-small cell lung cancer
25.  Development of an ELISA-array for simultaneous detection of five encephalitis viruses 
Virology Journal  2012;9:56.
Japanese encephalitis virus(JEV), tick-borne encephalitis virus(TBEV), and eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEV) can cause symptoms of encephalitis. Establishment of accurate and easy methods by which to detect these viruses is essential for the prevention and treatment of associated infectious diseases. Currently, there are still no multiple antigen detection methods available clinically. An ELISA-array, which detects multiple antigens, is easy to handle, and inexpensive, has enormous potential in pathogen detection. An ELISA-array method for the simultaneous detection of five encephalitis viruses was developed in this study. Seven monoclonal antibodies against five encephalitis-associated viruses were prepared and used for development of the ELISA-array. The ELISA-array assay is based on a "sandwich" ELISA format and consists of viral antibodies printed directly on 96-well microtiter plates, allowing for direct detection of 5 viruses. The developed ELISA-array proved to have similar specificity and higher sensitivity compared with the conventional ELISAs. This method was validated by different viral cultures and three chicken eggs inoculated with infected patient serum. The results demonstrated that the developed ELISA-array is sensitive and easy to use, which would have potential for clinical use.
doi:10.1186/1743-422X-9-56
PMCID: PMC3305475  PMID: 22369052

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