A pulsed laser engineering approach is developed to prepare novel functional graphene paper with graphitic nanospheres homogeneously decorated on the surface and the superior performance of engineered paper is revealed in matrix-free mass spectrometry (MS) detection and imaging. We demonstrate that the stability of graphene paper under intense irradiation can be dramatically increased through a designed laser engineering process by forming densely packed graphitic nanospheres on the paper surface. Moreover, the surface hydrophobicity is enhanced and electric conductivity is improved. The engineered graphene paper can image the invisible micro-patterns of trace amount molecules and increases the detection limit towards diverse molecules by over two orders of magnitude compared to the pristine graphene paper and commercial products in MS analysis.
The prognosis for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is poor, and the mechanisms underlying the development of HCC remain unclear. Notch1 and Notch3 may be involved in malignant transformation, although their roles remain unknown.
Materials and Methods
HCC tissues were stained with anti-Notch1 or -Notch3 antibody. The migration and invasion capacities of the cells were measured with transwell cell culture chambers. RT-PCR was used to measure the expression of Notch1 and Notch3 mRNA. Additionally, western blot analysis was used to assess the protein expression of Notch1, Notch3, CD44v6, E-cadherin, matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2), MMP-9, and urokinase-type plasminogen activator (uPA). RNA interference was used to down-regulate the expression of Notch1 and Notch3. Cell viability was assessed using MTT.
Based on immunohistochemistry, high Notch1 expression was correlated with tumor size, tumor grade, metastasis, venous invasion and AJCC TNM stage. High Notch3 expression was only strongly correlated with metastasis, venous invasion and satellite lesions. Kaplan-Meier curves demonstrated that patients with high Notch1 or Notch3 expression were at a significantly increased risk for shortened survival time. In vitro, the down-regulation of Notch1 decreased the migration and invasion capacities of HCC cells by regulating CD44v6, E-cadherin, MMP-2, MMP-9, and uPA via the COX-2 and ERK1/2 pathways. Down-regulation of Notch3 only decreased the invasion capacity of HCC cells by regulating MMP-2 and MMP-9 via the ERK1/2 pathway.
Based on the migration and invasion of HCC, we hypothesize that targeting Notch1 may be more useful than Notch3 for designing novel preventive and therapeutic strategies for HCC in the near future.
Secretory meningioma (SM) is a rare, benign subtype of meningioma. Between January 2005 and December 2010, 70 SMs were operated on at the Department of Neurosurgery, Huashan Hospital, Fudan University. We retrospectively analyzed the clinical data, radiological and immunohistochemical findings, and patient outcome to discuss the specific features of SMs. Cranial base preference, hyper-signal in T2 weighted MR image, “xenon light” gadolinium-diethylenetriamine pentaacetic acid (Gd-DTPA) enhancement were frequently observed in the 70 cases. Non-skull base SMs, which received more complete resection (p<0.01) and had better short-term and long-term outcome, were observed with more severe peritumoral brain edema (PTBE) (p<0.001). In follow-up, only 1 cranial base SM case showed tumor progression. 3 cases died after operation, all with cranial base SMs. As for the 10 cases given Simpson grade 3 or 4 resection who were available at follow-up, 3 died, 5 received gamma-knife therapy, and the other 2 cases received no treatment at all. Only one of the 2 residual SMs without postoperative radiation presented minor progression at a median of 48 months follow-up. In conclusion, cranial base preference, hyper-signal T2 weighted MR image and “xenon light” GD-DTPA enhancement are specific for SMs. Prognosis of SMs is related with operation completeness and surgical risks, rather than the extent of PTBE. Residual SM grows slowly and reacts well to gamma-knife therapy.
Location; prognosis; radiology; secretory meningiomas
Innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) expressing the nuclear receptor RORγt are essential for gut immunity presumably through production of interleukin (IL)-22. The molecular mechanism underlying the development of RORγt+ ILCs is poorly understood. Here, we have shown that the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (Ahr) plays an essential role in RORγt+ ILC maintenance and function. Expression of Ahr in the hematopoietic compartment was important for accumulation of adult but not fetal intestinal RORγt+ ILCs. Without Ahr, RORγt+ ILCs had increased apoptosis and less production of IL-22. RORγt interacted with Ahr and promoted Ahr binding at the Il22 locus. Upon IL-23 stimulation, Ahr-deficient RORγt+ ILCs had reduced IL-22 expression, consistent with downregulation of IL-23R in those cells. Ahr-deficient mice succumbed to Citrobacter rodentium infection, while ectopic expression of IL-22 protected animals from early mortality. Our data uncover a previously unrecognized physiological role for Ahr in promoting innate gut immunity by regulating RORγt+ ILCs.
Ahr; RORγt+ILCs; IL-22; Citrobacter rodentium infection
The aim of the present study was to discuss the clinical features of intracranial vestibular schwannomas and to evaluate the symptoms and signs as well as their correlation with tumor extension. The records of 1,009 patients who were treated in Shanghai Huashan Hospital were reviewed retrospectively. According to the Samii classification of 1997, the patients were grouped into a T3 and a T4 group based on the radiological findings. We focused our analysis on the incidence of subjective disturbances versus objective morbidity, and symptomatology versus tumor size and extension. Of the 1,009 cases, 424 patients (42.0%) were defined as T3 while 585 patients (58%) were defined as T4. The most frequent clinical symptoms were hearing loss (85.8%), facial numbness (48.9%), ataxia (44.6%), tinnitus (40.1%), deafness (26.3%) and facial paralysis (21.1%). The ratios of gender, vertigo and facial paralysis were significantly different between the T3 and T4 groups (P<0.05); however, none of the clinical symptoms had a positive likelihood ratio (PLR) greater than 10 for T4 prediction. The most frequent cranial nerve disturbance was associated with the cochlear nerve (92.6%) and trigeminal nerve (53.5%). Disturbance of the facial nerve was more severe in T3 than T4 patients (P<0.05). Hearing deficit, facial paresthesia, ataxia and tinnitus are key symptoms of huge vestibular schwannomas. Cochlear, trigeminal and facial nerves were the most commonly affected cranial nerves in cases of large tumors. Gender and tumor size were associated with tumor extension. Although the predictive value was limited, the symptoms of vertigo, facial paralysis and hearing loss may be indicators of tumor growth.
vestibular schwannomas; clinical feature; alarm feature; tumor growth
It has been proven that radioactive seeds such as Iodine-125 seeds implantation is a highly effective treatment for patients with localized cancer, such as lung cancer. It may increase the effectiveness of cryosurgery for lung cancer with the combination of Iodine-125 seed implantation into edge of the cryoablation zone. Percutaneous cryosurgery and Iodine-125 seed implantation are mutual complementation; both have been proved to be safe and effective modality for unresectable lung cancer, especially for centrally located lung cancer. Well-designed, randomized and control study both in the laboratory and in the clinical about this option are needed before the conclusive evidence submits.
Lung cancer; cryosurgery; cryoablation; Iodine-125 seeds
Zinc distributes widely in the central nervous system, especially in the hippocampus, amygdala and cortex. The dynamic balance of zinc is critical for neuronal functions. Zinc modulates the activity of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) through the direct inhibition and various intracellular signaling pathways. Abnormal NMDAR activities have been implicated in the aetiology of many brain diseases. Sustained zinc accumulation in the extracellular fluid is known to link to pathological conditions. However, the mechanism linking this chronic zinc exposure and NMDAR dysfunction is poorly understood.
We reported that chronic zinc exposure reduced the numbers of NR1 and NR2A clusters in cultured hippocampal pyramidal neurons. Whole-cell and synaptic NR2A-mediated currents also decreased. By contrast, zinc did not affect NR2B, suggesting that chronic zinc exposure specifically influences NR2A-containg NMDARs. Surface biotinylation indicated that zinc exposure attenuated the membrane expression of NR1 and NR2A, which might arise from to the dissociation of the NR2A-PSD-95-Src complex.
Chronic zinc exposure perturbs the interaction of NR2A to PSD-95 and causes the disorder of NMDARs in hippocampal neurons, suggesting a novel action of zinc distinct from its acute effects on NMDAR activity.
A great number of studies regarding the associations between IL-1B-511, IL-1B+3954 and IL-1RN VNTR polymorphisms within the IL-1gene cluster and coronary heart disease (CHD) have been published. However, results have been inconsistent. In this study, a meta-analysis was performed to investigate the associations.
Published literature from PubMed and Embase databases were searched for eligible publications. Pooled odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated using random- or fixed- effect model.
Thirteen studies (3,219 cases/2,445 controls) for IL-1B-511 polymorphism, nine studies (1,828 cases/1,818 controls) for IL-1B+3954 polymorphism and twelve studies (2,987 cases/ 2,208 controls) for IL-1RN VNTR polymorphism were included in this meta analysis. The results indicated that both IL-1B-511 and IL-1B+3954 polymorphisms were not associated with CHD risk (IL-1B-511 T vs. C: OR = 0.98, 95%CI 0.87–1.09; IL-1B+3954 T vs. C: OR = 1.06, 95%CI 0.95–1.19). Similarly, there was no association between IL-1RN VNTR polymorphism and CHD risk (*2 vs. L: OR = 1.00, 95%CI 0.85–1.17).
This meta-analysis suggested that there were no associations between IL-1 gene cluster polymorphisms and CHD.
Depolarization-induced suppression of excitation (DSE) at parallel fiber-Purkinje cell synapse is an endocannabinoid-mediated short-term retrograde plasticity. Intracellular Ca2+ elevation is critical for the endocannabinoid production and DSE. Nevertheless, how elevated Ca2+ leads to DSE is unclear.
We utilized cytosolic phospholipase A2 alpha (cPLA2α) knock-out mice and whole-cell patch clamp in cerebellar slices to observed the action of cPLA2α/arachidonic acid signaling on DSE at parallel fiber-Purkinje cell synapse. Our data showed that DSE was significantly inhibited in cPLA2α knock-out mice, which was rescued by arachidonic acid. The degradation enzyme of 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL), blocked DSE, while another catabolism enzyme for N-arachidonoylethanolamine (AEA), fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), did not affect DSE. These results suggested that 2-AG is responsible for DSE in Purkinje cells. Co-application of paxilline reversed the blockade of DSE by internal K+, indicating that large conductance Ca2+-activated potassium channel (BK) is sufficient to inhibit cPLA2α/arachidonic acid-mediated DSE. In addition, we showed that the release of 2-AG was independent of soluble NSF attachment protein receptor (SNARE), protein kinase C and protein kinase A.
Our data first showed that cPLA2α/arachidonic acid/2-AG signaling pathway mediates DSE at parallel fiber-Purkinje cell synapse.
Utilizing somatic cell nuclear transfer, the authors demonstrate the generation of a transgenic miniature pig model of retinitis pigmentosa. These pigs demonstrate a clinical phenotype similar to that observed in humans and may represent a novel tool for study of hereditary retinal degeneration.
The Pro23His (P23H) rhodopsin (RHO) mutation underlies the most common form of human autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (adRP). The objective of this investigation was to establish a transgenic miniature swine model of RP using the human P23H RHO gene.
Somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) was used to create transgenic miniature pigs that expressed the human P23H RHO mutation. From these experiments, six transgenic founders were identified whose retinal function was studied with full-field electroretinography (ffERG) from 3 months through 2 years. Progeny from one founder were generated and genotyped to determine transgene inheritance pattern. Retinal mRNA was isolated, and the ratio of P23H to wild-type pig RHO was measured.
A single transgene integration site was observed for five of the six founders. All founders had abnormal scotopic and photopic ffERGs after 3 months. The severity of the ffERG phenotype was grouped into moderately and severely affected groups. Offspring of one founder inherited the transgene as an autosomal dominant mutation. mRNA analyses demonstrated that approximately 80% of total RHO was mutant P23H.
Expression of the human RHO P23H transgene in the retina creates a miniature swine model with an inheritance pattern and retinal function that mimics adRP. This large-animal model can serve as a novel tool for the study of the pathogenesis and therapeutic intervention in the most common form of adRP.
To train Tibetan monkey (Macaca thibetana) for intraocular pressure (IOP) measurement in conscious state and obtain normal IOP in conscious Tibetan Macaque.
The training was based on award-conditioned behavior. Food stimulation and human-animal interaction were used in this training.
Trained Tibetan monkeys calmly accepted IOP measurement by the TonoVet® rebound tonometer without sedation or anesthesia and their IOP values were similar to other primates.
Human-cultivated Thibetan monkeys are tamable, and can be used for biomedical research such as ophthalmic research without anesthesia.
Macaca thibetana; domestication; conscious intraocular pressure measurement
Immunological arguments and historical examples have shown that treatment with cord blood for non-hematopoietic activities, such as growth factor production and stimulation of angiogenesis, may not require matching or immune suppression.
To study the benefit of blood mononuclear cell therapy, 8 patients with idiopathic osteoporosis were given intermittent treatments with non-matched allogeneic cord blood mononuclear cells for 3 months. Morning fasting samples were collected for measuring urine N telopeptide of type-1 collagen, serum bone-specific alkaline phosphatase, and insulin-like growth factor 1 during one-year study.
Clinical response was striking. Serum insulin-like growth factor 1 significantly increased in all patients at 3 months compared with baseline values, from 264.1 ± 107.0 to 384.4 ± 63.1 ng/mL (P = 0.002), with a tendency to return to baseline values at 12 months (312.9 ± 75.5 ng/mL, P = 0.083). In contrast, differences in serum bone-specific alkaline phosphatase and urine N telopeptide of type-1 collagen were not significant at 3 (P = 0.765, P = 0.057) or 12 months (P = 0.889, P = 0.122). A beneficial effect on bone density was observed in all patients at the lumbar spine. The mean bone mineral density calculated during therapy (0.6811 ± 0.1442 g/cm2) tended higher than baseline values (0.6239 ± 0.1362 g/cm2, P < 0), and percentage change (median) varied from 8.85% at 3 months to 7.85% at one year. All patients are now well after one year.
The findings indicate that for these patients with idiopathic osteoporosis, treatment with cord blood mononuclear cells led to a significant increase in insulin-like growth factor 1 levels, which favors the increase in bone mineral density.
Osteoporosis; Cord blood mononuclear cells
The asymmetric unit of the title compound, C24H22O4, contains two independent molecules in both of which the naphthalene ring systems adopts a transoid arrangement. The dihedral angles between the naphthalene ring system in the two molecules are 83.0 (1) and 89.0 (1)°. There are slight differences in the C(H3)—O—C(H2)—O– torsion angles of the eqivalent methoxymethoxy groups. In the crystal, weak C—H⋯O hydrogen bonds are present.
The authors describe a swine model of rod-specific retinal degeneration.
Transgenic pigs carrying a mutant human rhodopsin transgene have been developed as a large animal model of retinitis pigmentosa (RP). This model displays some key features of human RP, but the time course of disease progression makes this model costly, time consuming, and difficult to study because of the size of the animals at end-stage disease. Here, the authors evaluate an iodoacetic acid (IAA) model of photoreceptor degeneration in the pig as an alternative model that shares features of the transgenic pig and human RP.
IAA blocks glycolysis, thereby inhibiting photoreceptor function. The effect of the intravenous injection of IAA on swine rod and cone photoreceptor viability and morphology was followed by histologic evaluation of different regions of the retina using hematoxylin and eosin and immunostaining. Rod and cone function was analyzed by full-field electroretinography and multifocal electroretinography.
IAA led to specific loss of rods in a central-to-peripheral retinal gradient. Although cones were resistant, they showed shortened outer segments, loss of bipolar cell synaptic connections, and a diminished flicker ERG, hallmarks of transition to cone dysfunction in RP patients.
IAA provides an alternative rod-dominant model of retinal damage that shares a surprising number of features with the pig transgenic model of RP and with human RP. This IAA model is cost-effective and rapid, ensuring that the size of the animals does not become prohibitive for end-stage evaluation or therapeutic intervention.
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are non-coding RNAs that regulate gene expression in post-transcriptional fashion, and emerging studies support their importance in regulating many biological processes, including myogenic differentiation and muscle development. miR-29 is a promoting factor during myogenesis but its full spectrum of impact on muscle cells has yet to be explored. Here we describe an analysis of miR-29 affected transcriptome in C2C12 muscle cells using a high throughput RNA-sequencing platform. The results reveal that miR-29 not only functions to promote myogenic differentiation but also suppresses the transdifferentiation of myoblasts into myofibroblasts. miR-29 inhibits the fibrogenic differentiation through down-regulating both extracellular matrix genes and cell adhesion genes. We further demonstrate that miR-29 is under negative regulation by TGF-beta (TGF-β)–Smad3 signaling via dual mechanisms of both inhibiting MyoD binding and enhancing Yin Yang 1 (YY1)-recruited Polycomb association. Together, these results identify miR-29 as a pleiotropic molecule in both myogenic and fibrogenic differentiation of muscle cells.
microRNAs (miRNAs) are non-coding RNAs that regulate gene expression post-transcriptionally, and mounting evidence supports the prevalence and functional significance of their interplay with transcription factors (TFs). Here we describe the identification of a regulatory circuit between muscle miRNAs (miR-1, miR-133 and miR-206) and Yin Yang 1 (YY1), an epigenetic repressor of skeletal myogenesis in mouse. Genome-wide identification of potential down-stream targets of YY1 by combining computational prediction with expression profiling data reveals a large number of putative miRNA targets of YY1 during skeletal myoblasts differentiation into myotubes with muscle miRs ranking on top of the list. The subsequent experimental results demonstrate that YY1 indeed represses muscle miRs expression in myoblasts and the repression is mediated through multiple enhancers and recruitment of Polycomb complex to several YY1 binding sites. YY1 regulating miR-1 is functionally important for both C2C12 myogenic differentiation and injury-induced muscle regeneration. Furthermore, we demonstrate that miR-1 in turn targets YY1, thus forming a negative feedback loop. Together, these results identify a novel regulatory circuit required for skeletal myogenesis and reinforce the idea that regulatory circuitries involving miRNAs and TFs are prevalent mechanisms.
mTor kinase is involved in cell growth, proliferation, and differentiation. The roles of mTor activators, Rheb1 and Rheb2, have not been established in vivo. Here, we report that Rheb1, but not Rheb2, is critical for embryonic survival and mTORC1 signaling. Embryonic deletion of Rheb1 in neural progenitor cells abolishes mTORC1 signaling in developing brain and increases mTORC2 signaling. Remarkably, embryonic and early postnatal brain development appears grossly normal in these Rheb1f/f, Nes-cre mice with the notable exception of deficits of myelination. Conditional expression of Rheb1 transgene in neural progenitors increases mTORC1 activity and promotes myelination in the brain. In addition, the Rheb1 transgene rescues mTORC1 signaling and hypomyelination in the Rheb1f/f, Nes-cre mice. Our study demonstrates that Rheb1 is essential for mTORC1 signaling and myelination in the brain, and suggests that mTORC1 signaling plays a role in selective cellular adaptations, rather than general cellular viability.
Liver X receptors (LXRs) are nuclear receptors involved in cholesterol homeostasis. Notably, they are also expressed by T cells and are involved in regulating T cell proliferation and differentiation. In this issue of the JCI, Cui et al. have elucidated the molecular mechanism underlying the effects of LXR activation on a subset of T cells known as Th17 cells in mice and humans. Specifically, they showed that LXR-induced Srebp-1 inhibits Il17 transcription by binding to the Il17 promoter through interaction with the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (Ahr), a transcription factor known to enhance Th17 cell responses.
Chinese suicide samples have provided opportunities to study the differences between suicides with and without psychiatric diagnoses.
To examine the differences between suicides with and without mental disorders.
Sixty-six suicides and 66 living controls were studied with psychological autopsy interviews in rural China. Those who died by suicide with (n = 45) and without (n = 21) mental disorders were compared on demographic characteristics, suicidal behavior, social support, life events, and depressive symptoms (as measured by the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale, HAMD).
Suicides with and without psychiatric diagnoses had significant differences in many demographic and social factors. In comparison with suicides with psychiatric diagnoses, suicides without psychiatric diagnoses were younger, were better educated, had higher income, were more likely to kill themselves using pesticides or other poisons, were less likely to have a history of prior suicide attempt, had less long-term life events and more recent life events, and scored lower on HAMD.
These two groups might be from two different populations. This finding has important implications for more effective and targeted suicide prevention strategies in China.
suicide; psychological autopsy; mental disorder; China
DNA methylation aberration and microRNA (miRNA) deregulation have been observed in many types of cancers. A systematic study of methylome and transcriptome in bladder urothelial carcinoma has never been reported.
The DNA methylation was profiled by modified methylation-specific digital karyotyping (MMSDK) and the expression of mRNAs and miRNAs was analyzed by digital gene expression (DGE) sequencing in tumors and matched normal adjacent tissues obtained from 9 bladder urothelial carcinoma patients. We found that a set of significantly enriched pathways disrupted in bladder urothelial carcinoma primarily related to “neurogenesis” and “cell differentiation” by integrated analysis of -omics data. Furthermore, we identified an intriguing collection of cancer-related genes that were deregulated at the levels of DNA methylation and mRNA expression, and we validated several of these genes (HIC1, SLIT2, RASAL1, and KRT17) by Bisulfite Sequencing PCR and Reverse Transcription qPCR in a panel of 33 bladder cancer samples.
We characterized the profiles between methylome and transcriptome in bladder urothelial carcinoma, identified a set of significantly enriched key pathways, and screened four aberrantly methylated and expressed genes. Conclusively, our findings shed light on a new avenue for basic bladder cancer research.