Despite great progress in the treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) over the last-decade, intrahepatic recurrence is still the most frequent serious adverse event after all the treatments including microwave ablation. This study aimed to predict early recurrence of HCC after microwave ablation using serum proteomic signature.
After curative microwave ablation of HCC, 86 patients were followed-up for 1 year. Serum samples were collected before microwave ablation. The mass spectra of proteins were generated using surface-enhanced laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (SELDI-TOF MS). Serum samples from 50 patients were randomly selected as a training set and for biomarkers discovery and model development. The remaining serum samples were categorized for validation of the algorithm.
According to preablation serum protein profiling obtained from the 50 HCC samples in the training set, nine significant differentially-expressed proteins were detected in the serum samples between recurrent and non-recurrent patients. Decision classification tree combined with three candidate proteins with m/z values of 7787, 6858 and 6646 was produced using Biomarker Patterns Software with sensitivity of 85.7% and specificity of 88.9% in the training set. When the SELDI marker pattern was tested with the blinded testing set, it yielded a sensitivity of 80.0%, a specificity of 88.5% and a positive predictive value of 86.1%.
Differentially-expressed protein peaks in preablation serum screened by SELDI are associated with prognosis of HCC. The decision classification tree is a potential tool in predicting early intrahepatic recurrence in HCC patients after microwave ablation.
Social caste determination in the honey bee is assumed to be determined by the dietary status of the young larvae and translated into physiological and epigenetic changes through nutrient-sensing pathways. We have employed Illumina/Solexa sequencing to examine the small RNA content in the bee larval food, and show that worker jelly is enriched in miRNA complexity and abundance relative to royal jelly. The miRNA levels in worker jelly were 7–215 fold higher than in royal jelly, and both jellies showed dynamic changes in miRNA content during the 4th to 6th day of larval development. Adding specific miRNAs to royal jelly elicited significant changes in queen larval mRNA expression and morphological characters of the emerging adult queen bee. We propose that miRNAs in the nurse bee secretions constitute an additional element in the regulatory control of caste determination in the honey bee.
Tumour suppressor ING4 is one of ING family genes, which are involved in cell cycle arrest, gene transcription regulation, DNA repair and apoptosis. ING4 inhibition has been reported in various tumours, including gliomas, breast tumours, and stomach adenocarcinoma. The aim was to evaluate ING4 expression in lung cancers.
Method and results
By immunohistochemistry of 246 lung tumour tissues, reduced ING4 nuclear and cytoplasmic expression were both revealed in lung cancer and associated with tumour grade. Interestingly, compared with normal tissues, we found more tumours with ING4 expression in the cytoplasm higher than in the nucleus. Nuclear ING4 inhibition correlated with the tumour stage and lymph node metastasis. Consistent with these findings, semiquantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction and Western blotting demonstrated decreased ING4 mRNA and expression in 100% (50 / 50) tumour tissues. Furthermore, ING4 expression was lower in grade III than in grades I–II tumours. Reduced ING4 mRNA correlated with lymph node metastasis.
Our results indicate that overall inhibition of ING4 expression and ING4 expression higher in cytoplasm than in nucleus of tumour cells may be involved in the initiation and progression of lung cancers, and thus, analysis for ING4 expression may be useful as a clinical diagnostic and prognostic tool for lung cancer.
PMID: 20716169 CAMSID: cams3768
ING4 expression; lung cancer; mRNA; tumour suppressor gene
The development cycle of an image-guided surgery navigation system is too long to meet current clinical needs. This paper presents an integrated system developed by the integration of two open-source software (IGSTK and MITK) to shorten the development cycle of the image-guided surgery navigation system and save human resources simultaneously. An image-guided surgery navigation system was established by connecting the two aforementioned open-source software libraries. It used the Medical Imaging Interaction Toolkit (MITK) as a framework providing image processing tools for the image-guided surgery navigation system of medical imaging software with a high degree of interaction and used the Image-Guided Surgery Toolkit (IGSTK) as a library that provided the basic components of the system for location, tracking, and registration. The electromagnetic tracking device was used to measure the real-time position of surgical tools and fiducials attached to the patient’s anatomy. IGSTK was integrated into MITK; at the same time, the compatibility and the stability of this system were emphasized. Experiments showed that an integrated system of the image-guided surgery navigation system could be developed in 2 months. The integration of IGSTK into MITK is feasible. Several techniques for 3D reconstruction, geometric analysis, mesh generation, and surface data analysis for medical image analysis of MITK can connect with the techniques for location, tracking, and registration of IGSTK. This integration of advanced modalities can decrease software development time and emphasize the precision, safety, and robustness of the image-guided surgery navigation system.
MITK; IGSTK; Image-guided surgery navigation; Development cycle; Open-source software; Integration
The aim of the study was to evaluate the efficiency and feasibility of contrast-enhanced ultrasound (CEUS) with Sonovue in assessing of renal cell carcinomas (RCCs) following ultrasound (US)-guided percutaneous microwave ablation (MWA).
Patinets and methods
Seventy-nine patients (60 males and 19 females) with 83 lesions (mean size 3.2±1.6 cm) were treated by US-guided percutaneous MWA. The CEUS results of the third day after the ablation were compared with the synchronous contrast-enhanced computed tomography (CT)/magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) results and biopsy pathological results. The follow-up was performed by CEUS and CT/MRI after 1, 3, 6 months and every 6 months subsequently. The combination of clinical follow-up results and CT/MRI imaging findings was the reference standard of CEUS results for evaluating the therapeutic effect. The identification of residual or recurrence tumour was assessed by two blinded radiologists.
On the third day after MWA, CEUS showed 68 of 83 lesions (68/83, 81.9%) successfully ablated and 15 of 83 (18.1%) with residual tumours. Among residual tumours, 13 (86.7%) were confirmed by contrast-enhanced CT/MRI findings and biopsy results. The sensitivity, specificity, accuracy, positive and negative predictive value of CEUS evaluating the short-term MWA effectiveness were 100%, 97.1%, 97.6%, 86.7% and 100%, respectively. During the six years follow-up (median 26 months), the CEUS showed recurrence in 7 patients, and six of them achieved consistent results on CEUS and CT/MRI imaging. The sensitivity, specificity, accuracy, positive and negative predictive value for CEUS evaluating long-term MWA effectiveness were 85.7%, 98.7%, 97.6%, 85.7% and 98.7%, respectively.
The post-procedural CEUS demonstrated as an effective and feasible method in evaluating a therapeutic effect of RCCs following MWA.
contras enhanced ultrasound; microwave ablation; renal cell carcinoma
Background and Purpose
NAD(P)H: quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1) mediated quinone reduction and subsequent UDP-glucuronosyltransferases (UGTs) catalyzed glucuronidation is the dominant metabolic pathway of tanshinone IIA (TSA), a promising anti-cancer agent. UGTs are positively expressed in various tumor tissues and play an important role in the metabolic elimination of TSA. This study aims to explore the role of UGT1A in determining the intracellular accumulation and the resultant apoptotic effect of TSA.
We examined TSA intracellular accumulation and glucuronidation in HT29 (UGT1A positive) and HCT116 (UGT1A negative) human colon cancer cell lines. We also examined TSA-mediated reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, cytotoxicity and apoptotic effect in HT29 and HCT116 cells to investigate whether UGT1A levels are directly associated with TSA anti-cancer effect. UGT1A siRNA or propofol, a UGT1A9 competitive inhibitor, was used to inhibit UGT1A expression or UGT1A9 activity.
Multiple UGT1A isoforms are positively expressed in HT29 but not in HCT116 cells. Cellular S9 fractions prepared from HT29 cells exhibit strong glucuronidation activity towards TSA, which can be inhibited by propofol or UGT1A siRNA interference. TSA intracellular accumulation in HT29 cells is much lower than that in HCT116 cells, which correlates with high expression levels of UGT1A in HT29 cells. Consistently, TSA induces less intracellular ROS, cytotoxicity, and apoptotic effect in HT29 cells than those in HCT116 cells. Pretreatment of HT29 cells with UGT1A siRNA or propofol can decrease TSA glucuronidation and simultaneously improve its intracellular accumulation, as well as enhance TSA anti-cancer effect.
Conclusions and Implications
UGT1A can compromise TSA cytotoxicity via reducing its intracellular exposure and switching the NQO1-triggered redox cycle to metabolic elimination. Our study may shed a light in understanding the cellular pharmacokinetic and molecular mechanism by which UGTs determine the chemotherapy effects of drugs that are UGTs’ substrates.
Lymph node metastasis (LNM) in gastric cancer is a very important prognostic factor affecting long-term survival. Currently, several common imaging techniques are used to evaluate the lymph node status. However, they are incapable of achieving both high sensitivity and specificity simultaneously. In order to deal with this complex issue, a new evidential reasoning (ER) based model is proposed to support diagnosis of LNM in gastric cancer.
There are 175 consecutive patients who went through multidetector computed tomography (MDCT) consecutively before the surgery. Eight indicators, which are serosal invasion, tumor classification, tumor enhancement pattern, tumor thickness, number of lymph nodes, maximum lymph node size, lymph node station and lymph node enhancement are utilized to evaluate the tumor and lymph node through CT images. All of the above indicators reflect the biological behavior of gastric cancer. An ER based model is constructed by taking the above indicators as input index. The output index determines whether LNM occurs for the patients, which is decided by the surgery and histopathology. A technique called k-fold cross-validation is used for training and testing the new model. The diagnostic capability of LNM is evaluated by receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves. A Radiologist classifies LNM by adopting lymph node size for comparison.
134 out of 175 cases are cases of LNM, and the remains are not. Eight indicators have statistically significant difference between the positive and negative groups. The sensitivity, specificity and AUC of the ER based model are 88.41%, 77.57% and 0.813, respectively. However, for the radiologist evaluating LNM by maximum lymph node size, the corresponding values are only 63.4%, 75.6% and 0.757. Therefore, the proposed model can obtain better performance than the radiologist. Besides, the proposed model also outperforms other machine learning methods.
According to the biological behavior information of gastric cancer, the ER based model can diagnose LNM effectively and preoperatively.
Gastric cancer; Lymph node metastasis; Evidential reasoning
Background. Cancer/testis antigens (CTAs) are ideal targets for cancer immunotherapy in virtue of their restricted expression profile in normal tissues. However, CTA-targeted immunotherapy has been rather disappointing clinical setting for CTAs are downregulated by cytosine-phosphate-guanosine (CpG) methylation in their promoter regions, so that tumor cells have low immunogenicity. Methods. We reinduced mouse CTA P1A through demethylation process and generated P1A-specific cytotoxic lymphocytes (CTLs) by immunizing BALB/c (H-2d) mice with dendritic cells pulsed with a P1A-specific peptide and CpG oligodeoxynucleotide (ODN) immune adjuvant. Results. We found that demethylation and CpG ODN immune adjuvant stimulation facilitated DC maturation and enhanced the allogenic capacity of P1A-specific CTLs against target cells both in vitro and in vivo. Conclusions. Our results suggested that CTA induction and immune adjuvant stimulation is a feasible strategy in cancer immunotherapy.
This study investigated the influencing factors of foot plantar pressure and attempted to find practical indicators to predict abnormal foot pressure in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM).
Subjects and Methods
Vibration perception threshold (VPT) and foot plantar pressure in 1,126 T2DM outpatients were examined. Patients were assigned to Group A (n=599), Group B (n=312), and Group C (n=215) according to VPT values and to Group I (n=555), Group II (n=436), and Group III (n=135) based on body mass index (BMI). The clinical characteristics and pressure–time integral (PTI) were compared among the three groups, and the associated factors of the total PTI in the entire foot (T-PTI) were analyzed.
PTI of Group C in heel medial and heel lateral was significantly higher than that of Group A (all P<0.01). PTI of Group B in the right fifth metatarsal and heel medial was significantly higher than that of Group A (all P<0.05). T-PTI of Group C was significantly higher than those of Groups A and B, and that of Group B was higher than that of Group A (all P<0.01). PTI of Groups II and III in the second, third, and fourth metatarsal, midfoot, heel medial, and heel lateral was significantly higher than that of Group I (all P<0.05). T-PTI of Groups II and III was significantly higher than that of Group I (all P<0.01). Pearson correlation analysis showed that T-PTI was positively associated with age, VPT, waist circumference, waist-to-hip ratio, and BMI (P<0.05). In multiple stepwise regression analysis, VPT (P=0.004) and BMI (P=0.000) were independent risk factors of T-PTI, and each 1 unit increase in BMI increased the T-PTI by 5.962 kPa•s. Receiver operator characteristic curve analysis further revealed that the optimal cutpoint of VPT and BMI to predict the abnormal PTI was 21 V (odds ratio=2.33, 95% confidence interval 1.67–3.25) and 24.9 kg/m2 (odds ratio=2.12, 95% confidence interval 1.55–2.90), respectively.
Having a VPT higher than 21 V and a BMI above 24.9 kg/m2 increases the risk of excessive foot plantar pressure in Chinese T2DM.
The aim of this study was to understand the characteristics of blood pressure (BP) variability in subjects with diabetic nephropathy (DN), and identify the probable predictors affecting BP variability. Fifty-one chronic kidney disease (CKD)-hypertensive patients without diabetes (NDN group) and sixty type 2 diabetic patients with overt DN (DN group) were enrolled in this study. The values of short-term BP variability were obtained from 24 h ambulatory BP monitoring (ABPM). Variance analysis or nonparametric analysis revealed that 24-h systolic BP variability and nighttime systolic BP variability of the DN group were significantly higher than those of the NDN group [(12.23±3.66) vs. (10.74±3.83) mmHg, P<0.05; (11.23±4.82) vs. (9.48±3.69) mmHg, P<0.05]. Then the patients of the DN group were divided into two groups according to glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) level: Group A (HbA1c<7%) and Group B (HbA1c≥7%), and the t-test showed that patients in Group B had larger 24-h diastolic, daytime diastolic, and nighttime systolic/diastolic BP variability compared with Group A. In the DN group, partial correlation analysis revealed that HbA1c exhibited a strong association with 24-h diastolic, daytime diastolic, nighttime systolic and diastolic BP variability (P<0.001, P<0.001, P<0.05, and P<0.001, respectively). Taken together, larger short-term BP variability was detected in hypertensive type 2 diabetic patients with overt nephropathy and renal insufficiency. It may imply that the optimal BP variability level could benefit from a better glycaemic control.
Short-term blood pressure variability; Diabetic nephropathy; Glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c); Hypertension; Glycaemic control
AIM: To investigate the effect of antiviral therapy with nucleoside analogs in hepatitis B virus (HBV)-related cirrhosis and esophageal varices.
METHODS: Eligible patients with HBV-related cirrhosis and esophageal varices who consulted two tertiary hospitals in Beijing, China, the Chinese Second Artillery General Hospital and Chinese PLA General Hospital, were enrolled in the study from January 2005 to December 2009. Of 117 patients, 79 received treatment with different nucleoside analogs and 38 served as controls. Bleeding rate, change in variceal grade and non-bleeding duration were analyzed. Multivariate Cox proportional hazard regression was used to identify factors related to esophageal variceal bleeding.
RESULTS: The bleeding rate was decreased in the antiviral group compared to the control group (29.1% vs 65.8%, P < 0.001). Antiviral therapy was an independent factor related to esophageal bleeding in multivariate analysis (HR = 11.3, P < 0.001). The mean increase in variceal grade per year was lower in the antiviral group (1.0 ± 1.3 vs 1.7 ± 1.2, P = 0.003). Non-bleeding duration in the antiviral group was prolonged in the Kaplan-Meier model. Viral load rebound was observed in 3 cases in the lamivudine group and in 1 case in the adefovir group, all of whom experienced bleeding. Entecavir and adefovir resulted in lower bleeding rates (17.2% and 28.6%, respectively) than the control (P < 0.001 and P = 0.006, respectively), whereas lamivudine (53.3%) did not (P = 0.531).
CONCLUSION: Antiviral therapy delays the progression of esophageal varices and reduces bleeding risk in HBV-related cirrhosis, however, high-resistance agents tend to be ineffective for long-term treatment.
Nucleoside analog; Esophageal variceal bleeding; Hepatitis B virus; Cirrhosis; Resistance; Entecavir; Lamivudine; Adefovir
Studies have shown that electroacupuncture (EA) ameliorates learning and memory after ischemic injury. However, there have been few studies elucidating the mechanisms of EA on learning and memory in cerebral hypoperfusion. In this study, we explored the cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB) signaling pathway-mediated antiapoptotic action involved in EA-induced improvement of learning and memory. EA at GV20 and GV14 acupoints was applied in cerebral hypoperfusion rats. A Morris water maze task was performed, and the immunoreactivities of pCREB, Bcl-2, and Bax in the hippocampal CA1 area were evaluated by the Western blotting technique. Our findings indicated that (1) EA ameliorated spatial learning and memory impairment in cerebral hypoperfusion rats; (2) EA increased the immunoreactivities of pCREB and Bcl-2 and decreased the immunoreactivity of Bax; (3) intracerebroventricular administration of H89 (the inhibitor of protein kinase A) blocked EA-induced, pCREB-mediated antiapoptotic action and improved learning and memory. These results suggest that EA can ameliorate learning and memory via activation of the CREB signaling pathway in the hippocampus to attenuate apoptosis after cerebral hypoperfusion.
It has been reported that dense intratumoral infiltration of Foxp3 +Tregs (Tregs) was an independent factor for poor prognosis of breast cancer (BC) patients. However, the cytokines activating the Treg infiltration are not known. This study was undertaken to evaluate the role of CCL22 and TGF-β1 in this cascade and their prognostic significance for BC patients. 417 cases of invasive breast cancer were selected from the prior study cohort and the expressions of CCL22 and TGF-β1 were assessed by immunohistochemistry. It was identified that tumor secretion of CCL22 was positively correlated with the intratumoral Treg infiltration (P<0.0001), but its association with lymphoid aggregates surrounding the tumor was not proven to be significant (P=0.056). Moreover, CCL22 expression was found to be associated with the tumor histological features known to be related with unfavorable prognosis of patients, including high histological grade (P<0.0001), negative ER (P<0.0001), negative PR (P=0.001), and HER2 amplification (P=0.028). Similar to intratumoral Treg infiltrates, CCL22 tumor secretion correlated with the prognosis of the molecular subtypes of breast carcinoma (P<0.0001). Univariate analysis revealed CCL22 to be an independent prognostic factor for overall survival (OS, P<0.0001) and progression-free survival (PFS, P<0.0001) of BC patients that were confirmed by multivariate analysis (P=0.011 and P=0.010 respectively). In contrast, although TGF-β1 expression was positively correlated with both Tregs infiltrates into the tumor bed and lymphoid aggregates surrounding the tumor (P=0.023; P=0.046, respectively), its expression was not significantly associated with the molecular subtypes of breast carcinoma and the prognosis of the patients. Our study indicates that both CCL22 and TGF-β1 are candidate chemoattractants for intratumoral Foxp3 +Tregs infiltration; however, unlike the later, CCL22 is an independent prognostic predictor of BC patients, and it therefore may have the potential to serve as a target for immunotherapeutic strategy of BC.
Aberrant activation of Cyclin D-Cdk4/6 signaling pathway is commonly found in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC). Here, we show that PD-0332991, a highly specific inhibitor for Cdk4 and Cdk6, exerted growth inhibitory effects on three human PDAC cell lines. Microarray analysis revealed that PD-0332991 down-regulated cell-cycle-related genes, but up-regulated genes implicated in extracellular matrix (ECM) remodeling and pancreatic cancer cell invasion and metastasis. Moreover, PD-0332991 enhanced invasion in transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-β)-responsive PDAC cell lines that harbor a wild-type SMAD4 gene (COLO-357, PANC-1), but not in TGF-β-resistant AsPC-1 cells that harbor a mutated SMAD4. PD-0332991 also induced epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in COLO-357 and PANC-1, but not in AsPC-1 cells. Inhibition of CDK4/6 using shRNA mimicked the effects of PD-0332991 on EMT induction. Furthermore, PD-0332991 increased Smad transcriptional activity in luciferase readout assays and activated TGF-β signaling. SB-505124, an inhibitor of the type I TGF-β receptor (TβRI) kinase, completely blocked EMT induction by PD-0332991. When combined with PD-0332991, SB-505124 inhibited the growth of COLO-357 and PANC-1 cells. Taken together, these data suggest that anti-Cdk4/6 therapy could induce EMT and enhance pancreatic cancer cell invasion by activating Smad-dependent TGF-β signaling, and that combining PD-0332991 and SB-505124 may represent a novel therapeutic strategy in PDAC.
Pancreatic cancer; Cdk4/6; PD-0332991; EMT; TGF-β
The aim of the present study was to investigate whether asiatic acid (AA), a pentacyclic triterpene derived from Centella asiatica, exerts anti-proliferative effects on multiple myeloma RPMI 8226 cells and to determine the molecular mechanism underlying the anticancer action of AA. The study sought to analyze the potential role of AA on the proliferation of the RPMI 8226 cells using a 3-(4,5-dimethyl-2-thiazolyl)-2,5-diphenyl-2H-tetrazolium assay. Cell cycle arrest was detected by flow cytometry, and the expression levels of focal adhesion kinase (FAK) in the myeloma cells induced by AA were analyzed using the western blotting and immunoprecipitation methods. The results indicated that AA significantly inhibited cell proliferation in a time- and dose-dependent manner and led to G2/M phase arrest at concentrations of 35 and 40 μmol/l in the RPMI 8226 cells. The expression levels of FAK and p-FAK were distinctly decreased following AA treatment (at the concentration of 40 μmol/l) for 24 h compared with that of the control groups. Taken together, these results demonstrated that AA was able to regulate cell cycle progression in RPMI 8226 cells, thereby significantly inhibiting cell growth. Furthermore, AA decreased the expression levels of FAK, indicating that the antitumor mechanism of AA may be associated with the inhibition of signal transduction mediated by FAK.
asiatic acid; multiple myeloma; focal adhesion kinase; proliferation inhibition; cell cycle arrest
Haemophilus influenzae; NMR assignment; structural genomics
Sinomenine (SIN) is a purified alkaloid from the Chinese herb Sinomenium acutum. Previous studies demonstrated that SIN possesses anti-inflammatory and anti-apoptotic properties. We thus in the present report conducted studies to examine its impact on ischemia reperfusion (IR) induced renal injury. Precondition of mice with 200 mg/kg of SIN provided significant protection for mice against IR-induced renal injury as manifested by the attenuated serum creatinine (Cre) and blood urea nitrogen (BUN) along with less severity for histological changes and tubular cell apoptosis. In line with these results, treatment of mice with SIN suppressed IR-induced inflammatory infiltration and the expression of chemokine CXCL-10, adhesion molecule ICAM-1, and cytokines TNF-а/IL-6. Mechanistic studies revealed that SIN inhibits NF-κB transcriptional activity to suppress IR-induced inflammatory response in the kidney, while it attenuates MAP kinase signaling to prevent tubular cells undergoing apoptosis after IR insult. Altogether, our data support that SIN could be a useful therapeutic agent for prevention and treatment of IR-induced renal injury in the clinical settings.
Sinomenine; reperfusion injury; inflammation; apoptosis
People with schizophrenia have a higher prevalence of obesity than the general population. Many people with this illness struggle with weight gain, due, in part, to medications and other factors that act as obstacles to exercise and healthy eating. Several studies have shown the benefits of behavioral weight loss programs targeting eating and/or exercise in people with schizophrenia. Fewer studies have used competitive events as a goal for an exercise program. The current study tested the feasibility of preparing, using an exercise program, for a 5-kilometer (5K) event in people with schizophrenia. The exercise program was a 10-week training program consisting of three supervised walking/jogging sessions per week and a weekly educational meeting on healthy behaviors. Almost 65% (11/17) of the subjects participated in all of the training sessions, and 82% (14/17) participated in the 5K event. Participants did not gain a significant amount of weight during the exercise program (median weight change = 0.7 kg; 25th percentile 0.5, 75th percentile 3.9, p = .10). This study suggests that using an achievable goal, such as a 5K event, promotes adherence to an exercise program and is feasible in a population of people with chronic schizophrenia.
schizophrenia; weight gain; weight management; 5K; healthy behavior
The impact of co-morbid substance use on mortality is not well studied in psychotic disorders. The objective of this study was to examine the impact of substance use on mortality in people with psychotic disorders and alcohol and/or drug use. We examined the rate of substance use and the risk of substance use on mortality risk over a 4–10 year period in 762 people with psychotic disorders. Deceased patients were identified from the Social Security Death Index and the Maryland Division of Vital Records. Substance use was defined as regular and heavy use or abuse or dependence. Seventy seven percent had co-morbid lifetime substance use, with co-morbid cannabis and alcohol use occurring most commonly. Out of 762 subjects, 62 died during follow up. In a Cox model, predicted mortality risk was higher in age group 35–55 compared to <35 years and in males, but reduced in cannabis users. Overall five- (3.1% vs 7.5%) and ten-year mortality risk (5.5% vs. 13.6%) was lower in cannabis users than in non-users with psychotic disorders (p=0.005) in a survival model. Alcohol use was not predictive of mortality. We observed a lower mortality risk in cannabis-using psychotic disorder patients compared to cannabis non-users despite subjects having similar symptoms and treatments. Future research is warranted to replicate these findings and to shed light on the anti-inflammatory properties of the endocannabinoid system and its role in decreased mortality in people with psychotic disorders.
psychotic disorders; substance use; cannabis; alcohol; mortality
The prevalence of cigarette smoking among people with schizophrenia is greater than that of the general population. Because smoking and use of other drugs covary, we examined illicit drug use in current smokers not trying to quit or reduce their tobacco use. We recruited outpatient participants who had a DSM-IV diagnosis of schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder (schizophrenia, n=70) and a control group who had no Axis I psychiatric disorders (control, n=97). During a 2-3 hour session, participants completed demographic and research questionnaires, including the Drug Use Survey (DUS).
Participants with schizophrenia were older than controls (p<0.001) and smoked more cigarettes per day (p=0.01), but did not differ in degree of nicotine dependence. Ever using a drug was similar between the groups, except that significantly more participants with schizophrenia reported ever using hallucinogens (p<0.001) and inhalants (p=0.001). For alcohol, cocaine, and marijuana, fewer participants with schizophrenia were current users, but more participants with schizophrenia were past users (p’s<0.0001). Heavy smokers from the general population continued to use illicit drugs throughout their lives, while schizophrenia participants had the highest period of illicit drug use in their 20’s.
These data suggest that illicit drug use tends to be high in heavy cigarette smokers, regardless of a schizophrenia diagnosis. However, while illicit drug use is high across the lifespan of heavy smokers in the general population, heavy smokers with schizophrenia use illicit drugs mostly in the first decade of their illness.
schizophrenia; smoking; cigarettes; tobacco; drug use; alcohol; marijuana
MGH2.1 is a herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV1) oncolytic virus that expresses two prodrug-activating transgenes: the cyclophosphamide (CPA)-activating cytochrome P4502B1 (CYP2B1) and the CPT11-activating secreted human intestinal carboxylesterase (shiCE). Toxicology and biodistribution of MGH2.1 in the presence/absence of prodrugs was evaluated in mice. MGH2.1 ± prodrugs was cytotoxic to human glioma cells, but not to normal cells. Pharmacokinetically, intracranial MGH2.1 did not significantly alter the metabolism of intraperitoneally (i.p.) administered prodrugs in mouse plasma, brain, or liver. MGH2.1 did not induce an acute inflammatory reaction. MGH2.1 DNA was detected in brains of mice inoculated with 108 pfus for up to 60 days. However, only one animal showed evidence of viral gene expression at this time. Expression of virally encoded genes was restricted to brain. Intracranial inoculation of MGH2.1 did not induce lethality at 108 pfus in the absence of prodrugs and at 106 pfus in the presence of prodrugs. This study provides safety and toxicology data justifying a possible clinical trial of intratumoral injection of MGH2.1 with peripheral administration of CPA and/or CPT11 prodrugs in humans with malignant gliomas.
carboxylesterase; CPT11; cyclophosphamide; cytochrome P450; herpes simplex virus; irinotecan
A new avian-origin influenza virus A (H7N9) recently crossed the species barrier and
infected humans; therefore, there is an urgent need to establish mammalian animal models
for studying the pathogenic mechanism of this strain and the immunological response. In
this study, we attempted to develop mouse models of H7N9 infection because mice are
traditionally the most convenient models for studying influenza viruses. We showed that
the novel A (H7N9) virus isolated from a patient could infect inbred BALB/c and C57BL/6
mice as well as outbred Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) mice. The amount of bodyweight
lost showed differences at 7 days post infection (d.p.i.) (BALB/c mice 30%, C57BL/6
and ICR mice approximately 20%), and the lung indexes were increased both at 3
d.p.i. and at 7 d.p.i.. Immunohistochemistry demonstrated the existence of the H7N9
viruses in the lungs of the infected mice, and these findings were verified by
quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and 50% tissue culture
infectious dose (TCID50) detection at 3 d.p.i. and 7 d.p.i.. Histopathological
changes occurred in the infected lungs, including pulmonary interstitial inflammatory
lesions, pulmonary oedema and haemorrhages. Furthermore, because the most clinically
severe cases were in elderly patients, we analysed the H7N9 infections in both young and
old ICR mice. The old ICR mice showed more severe infections with more bodyweight lost and
a higher lung index than the young ICR mice. Compared with the young ICR mice, the old
mice showed a delayed clearance of the H7N9 virus and higher inflammation in the lungs.
Thus, old ICR mice could partially mimic the more severe illness in elderly patients.
avian influenza virus; H7N9; mice
The fetal liver kinase 1 (FLK-1)+ hemangioblast can generate hematopoietic, endothelial, and smooth muscle cells (SMCs). ER71/ETV2, GATA2, and SCL form a core transcriptional network in hemangioblast development. Transient coexpression of these three factors during mesoderm formation stage in mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs) robustly enhanced hemangioblast generation by activating bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) and FLK-1 signaling while inhibiting phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase, WNT signaling, and cardiac output. Moreover, etsrp, gata2, and scl inhibition converted hematopoietic field of the zebrafish anterior lateral plate mesoderm to cardiac. FLK-1+ hemangioblasts generated by transient coexpression of the three factors (ER71-GATA2-SCL [EGS]-induced FLK-1+) effectively produced hematopoietic, endothelial, and SMCs in culture and in vivo. Importantly, EGS-induced FLK-1+ hemangioblasts, when codelivered with mesenchymal stem cells as spheroids, were protected from apoptosis and generated functional endothelial cells and SMCs in ischemic mouse hindlimbs, resulting in improved blood perfusion and limb salvage. ESC-derived, EGS-induced FLK-1+ hemangioblasts could provide an attractive cell source for future hematopoietic and vascular repair and regeneration.
•ER71, GATA2, and Scl form a core transcriptional network in hemangioblast development•ER71, GATA2, and Scl coexpression enhances hemangioblast generation from ESCs•BMP, Wnt, VEGFR2, and PI3 kinase signaling pathways regulate hemangioblast development•Hemangioblast and MSC spheroids can improve vascular repair and regeneration
Somatostatin (Som), one of the most concentrated neuropeptides in the brain, is highly expressed in the olfactory bulb (OB). However, the temporal profile by which OB somatostatin-expressing (Som+) interneurons are produced and the molecular mechanisms controlling this profile are totally unknown. In the present study, we found that all the Som+ interneurons in the mouse external plexiform layer (EPL) and the rat glomerular layer (GL) express the transcription factor Sp8.Using the 5-bromo-2′-deoxyuridine (BrdU) birth dating method, combined with immunostaining, we showed that the generation of Som+ interneurons in the mouse and rat OB is confined to the later embryonic and earlier postnatal stages. Within the mouse OB, the production of Som+ interneurons is maximal during late embryogenesis and decreases after birth, whereas the generation of Som+ interneurons is low during embryogenesis and increases gradually after birth in the rat OB. Interestingly, genetic ablation of Sp8 by cre/loxP-based recombination severely reduces the number of Som+ interneurons in the EPL of the mouse OB. Taken together, these results suggest that Sp8 is required for the normal production of Som+ interneurons in the EPL of the mouse OB.