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author:("Sun, yanai")
1.  Intracellular delivery of messenger RNA by recombinant PP7 virus-like particles carrying low molecular weight protamine 
BMC Biotechnology  2016;16:46.
Cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs) have been widely used as carriers to transport different molecules into living cells, whereas messenger RNAs (mRNAs) have been utilized as target molecules for the prevention and treatment of various diseases. However, the instability of CPPs and mRNAs has limited their application. Bacteriophage PP7 virus-like particles (VLPs) may protect peptides and RNAs from degradation through displaying foreign peptides on their surface and encapsidating RNA linked with the pac site.
In this study, the cDNA of the PP7 coat protein single-chain dimer carrying low molecular weight protamine (LMWP) and the cDNA of green fluorescent protein (GFP) were inserted into two multiple cloning sites of pETDuet-1, respectively. PP7 VLPs carrying the LMWP peptide and GFP mRNA were subsequently expressed in Escherichia coli BL21 (DE3) with high yield and thermal stability, and were easily purified. The VLPs were also non-replicative, non-infectious, and non-toxic. Moreover, they penetrated the mouse prostate cancer cells RM-1 after 24 h incubation. Last, PP7 VLPs carrying the LMWP could encapsidate the GFP mRNA, which was translated into mature protein in mammalian cells.
Recombinant PP7 VLPs can be used simultaneously as a targeted delivery vector for both peptides and mRNA due to their abilities to package RNA and display peptides.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12896-016-0274-9) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4884372  PMID: 27233770
Low molecular weight protamine; Messenger RNA; Peptide display; PP7 bacteriophage; Virus-like particle
2.  Maternal Snoring May Predict Adverse Pregnancy Outcomes: A Cohort Study in China 
PLoS ONE  2016;11(2):e0148732.
To examine the prevalence of snoring during pregnancy and its effects on key pregnancy outcomes.
Pregnant women were consecutively recruited in their first trimester. Habitual snoring was screened by using a questionnaire in the 1st and 3rd trimester, respectively. According to the time of snoring, participants were divided into pregnancy onset snorers, chronic snorers and non-snorers. Logistic regressions were performed to examine the associations between snoring and pregnancy outcomes.
Of 3 079 pregnant women, 16.6% were habitual snorers, with 11.7% were pregnancy onset snorers and 4.9% were chronic snorers. After adjusting for potential confounders, chronic snorers were independently associated with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) (RR 1.66, 95%CI 1.09–2.53). Both pregnancy onset and chronic snorers were independently associated with placental adhesion (RR 1.96, 95%CI 1.17–3.27, and RR 2.33, 95%CI 1.22–4.46, respectively). Pregnancy onset snorers were at higher risk of caesarean delivery (RR 1.37, 95%CI 1.09–1.73) and having macrosomia (RR 1.54, 95%CI 1.05–2.27) and large for gestational age (LGA) (RR 1.71, 95%CI 1.31–2.24) infants. In addition, being overweight or obese before pregnancy plays an important role in mediating snoring and adverse pregnancy outcomes.
Maternal snoring may increase the risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes, and being overweight or obese before pregnancy with snoring is remarkable for researchers. Further studies are still needed to confirm our results.
PMCID: PMC4752474  PMID: 26871434
3.  Internal consistency and test-retest reliability of the Chinese version of the 5-item Duke University Religion Index 
Shanghai Archives of Psychiatry  2014;26(5):300-309.
The Duke University Religion Index (DUREL) is a widely-used 5-item scale assessing religiosity.
Assess the internal consistency, reliability, and factor structure of the revised Chinese version of DUREL.
Using probability proportionate to size (PPS) methods we randomly identified 3981 households with eligible occupants in 20 primary sampling sites in Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, a province in northwest China in which 34% of the population are Muslims of the Hui ethnic group. In 3054 households a screening interview was completed and an adult family member was randomly selected; 2425 respondents completed the survey (including the DUREL) and 188 randomly selected individuals repeated the survey an average of 2.5 days later.
The internal consistency (Cronbach’s α) of the 5 items in the full sample was 0.90; it ranged from 0.70 to 0.90 in various subgroups of subjects stratified by ethnicity, urban versus rural residence, and above versus below median education. The test-retest reliability (intraclass correlation coefficient) for the total score in the full sample was 0.87; it ranged from 0.63 to 0.90 in the different subgroups of subjects. Exploratory factor analysis in a random half of the sample identified a single factor (eigen value=4.21) that explained 84% of the total variance. Confirmatory factor analysis in the second half of the sample confirmed the unidimensional model; the model fit measures of the one-factor model using the 5 item scores as observed variables were acceptable (comparative fit index [CFI] and Tucker-Lewis index [TLI]>0.99; root mean square error of approximation [RMSEA]=0.105; χ2 =70.49, df=5), but the model fit improved after adding the correlation between items 1 and 2 (that assess organized and personal religious activities, respectively) as a sixth observed variable(CFI and TLI>0.99; RMSEA=0.046; χ2 =14.32, df=4).
The Chinese version of the DUREL is a reliable and valid measure of religiosity that can be used to assess the relationship of religiosity/spirituality to physical and psychological wellbeing in Chinese respondents. As suggested by other authors, our factor analysis results indicate that the overall score is the best measure derived from the scale, not the three dimensional scores recommended by the original authors.
PMCID: PMC4248264  PMID: 25477725
religiosity; reliability; validity; explanatory factor analysis; confirmatory factor analysis; Hui ethnic group; China
4.  External Quality Assessment for Avian Influenza A (H7N9) Virus Detection Using Armored RNA 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  2013;51(12):4055-4059.
An external quality assessment (EQA) program for the molecular detection of avian influenza A (H7N9) virus was implemented by the National Center for Clinical Laboratories (NCCL) of China in June 2013. Virus-like particles (VLPs) that contained full-length RNA sequences of the hemagglutinin (HA), neuraminidase (NA), matrix protein (MP), and nucleoprotein (NP) genes from the H7N9 virus (armored RNAs) were constructed. The EQA panel, comprising 6 samples with different concentrations of armored RNAs positive for H7N9 viruses and four H7N9-negative samples (including one sample positive for only the MP gene of the H7N9 virus), was distributed to 79 laboratories in China that carry out the molecular detection of H7N9 viruses. The overall performances of the data sets were classified according to the results for the H7 and N9 genes. Consequently, we received 80 data sets (one participating group provided two sets of results) which were generated using commercial (n = 60) or in-house (n = 17) reverse transcription-quantitative PCR (qRT-PCR) kits and a commercial assay that employed isothermal amplification method (n = 3). The results revealed that the majority (82.5%) of the data sets correctly identified the H7N9 virus, while 17.5% of the data sets needed improvements in their diagnostic capabilities. These “improvable” data sets were derived mostly from false-negative results for the N9 gene at relatively low concentrations. The false-negative rate was 5.6%, and the false-positive rate was 0.6%. In addition, we observed varied diagnostic capabilities between the different commercially available kits and the in-house-developed assays, with the assay manufactured by BioPerfectus Technologies (Jiangsu, China) performing better than the others. Overall, the majority of laboratories have reliable diagnostic capacities for the detection of H7N9 virus.
PMCID: PMC3838055  PMID: 24088846
5.  Effect of statin therapy on the progression of coronary atherosclerosis 
An increasing number of authors employing intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) and virtual histology (VH-IVUS) have investigated the effect of statin use on plaque volume (PV) and plaque composition. However, inconsistent results have been reported. Therefore, we conducted a meta-analysis to determine the appropriate regimen of statins to effectively stabilize vulnerable coronary plaques.
Online electronic databases were carefully searched for all relevant studies. We compared mean values of PV and plaque composition between baseline and follow-up in patients receiving statin therapy. We pooled treatment effects and calculated mean differences (MD) with the 95% confidence interval (CI) using a random-effects model. By stratified analyses, we explored the influence of clinical presentation, dose and duration of statin treatment, and low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C) levels on the effects of statins.
Seventeen studies involving 2,171 patients were analyzed. Statin therapy significantly decreased PV (−5.3 mm3; 95% CI: –3.3 mm3 to −7.2 mm3; P < 0.001), without heterogeneity. When considering the dose and duration of statins used, only subgroups employing a high dose and long duration demonstrated a significant reduction in PV (p < 0.001). A significant decrease in PV was noted if achieved LDL-C levels were <100 mg/dL (p < 0.001). Statin treatment could induce a twofold decrease in PV in patients with acute coronary syndrome (ACS) compared with that observed in patients with stable angina pectoris (SAP). A regressive trend was seen for necrotic core volume (MD: –2.1 mm3; 95% CI: –4.7 mm3 to 0.5 mm3, P = 0.11). However, statin use did not induce a significant change for fibrotic, fibro-fatty, or dense calcium compositions.
Our meta-analysis demonstrated that statin therapy (especially that involving a high dose and long duration and achieving <100 mg/dL LDL-C levels) can significantly decrease PV in patients with SAP or ACS. These data suggested that statins can be used to reduce the atheroma burden for secondary prevention by appropriately selecting the statin regimen. No significant change in plaque composition was seen after statin therapy.
PMCID: PMC3468364  PMID: 22938176
Atherosclerosis; Statin; Meta-analysis; Intravascular ultrasound
6.  A Novel Model of Atherosclerosis in Rabbits Using Injury to Arterial Walls Induced by Ferric Chloride as Evaluated by Optical Coherence Tomography as well as Intravascular Ultrasound and Histology 
This study aim was to develop a new model of atherosclerosis by FeCl3-induced injury to right common carotid arteries (CCAs) of rabbits. Right CCAs were induced in male New Zealand White rabbits (n = 15) by combination of a cholesterol-rich diet and FeCl3-induced injury to arterial walls. The right and left CCAs were evaluated by histology and in vivo intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) and optical coherence tomography (OCT) examinations of 24 hours (n = 3), 8 weeks (n = 6), and 12 weeks (n = 6) after injury. Each right CCA of the rabbits showed extensive white-yellow plaques. At eight and 12 weeks after injury, IVUS, OCT, and histological findings demonstrated that the right CCAs had evident eccentric plaques. Six plaques (50%) with evident positive remodeling were observed. Marked progression was clearly observed in the same plaque at 12 weeks after injury when it underwent repeat OCT and IVUS. We demonstrated, for the first time, a novel model of atherosclerosis induced by FeCl3. The model is simple, fast, inexpensive, and reproducible and has a high success rate. The eccentric plaques and remodeling of plaques were common in this model. We successfully carried out IVUS and OCT examinations twice in the same lesion within a relatively long period of time.
PMCID: PMC3361737  PMID: 22665979

Results 1-6 (6)