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1.  The Effect and Mechanisms of Proliferative Inhibition of Crocin on Human Leukaemia Jurkat Cells 
The West Indian Medical Journal  2016;64(5):473-479.
ABSTRACT
Targeted therapy is a potentially useful approach for the treatment of T-lineage acute lymphoblastic leukaemia. This study aimed to find a highly effective, low toxic anti-tumour drug and further investigate its mechanisms. Jurkat cells were used as the object and were stimulated by different concentrations of crocin. By cell count, growth curve, methyl thiazolyl tetrazolium (MTT) method for the detection of cell proliferation, annexin V/propidium iodide (PI) method for the apoptosis rates, and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) for Bcl-2 and Bax gene expression, the effect and mechanisms of proliferative inhibition of crocin on Jurkat cells were further explored. Crocin promoted Jurkat cell apoptosis and inhibited cell growth, in a dose-time-dependent manner. The mechanism might be related to the inhibition of Bcl-2 gene expression and the promotion of Bax gene expression. These results suggest that crocin can be used as a suitable clinical agent for the treatment of T-lineage acute lymphoblastic leukaemia.
doi:10.7727/wimj.2016.053
PMCID: PMC4961334  PMID: 27398676
Anti-tumour; apoptosis; crocin; Jurkat cells
2.  Pain typology and incident endometriosis 
Human Reproduction (Oxford, England)  2015;30(10):2427-2438.
STUDY QUESTION
What are the pain characteristics among women, with no prior endometriosis diagnosis, undergoing laparoscopy or laparotomy regardless of clinical indication?
SUMMARY ANSWER
Women with surgically visualized endometriosis reported the highest chronic/cyclic pain and significantly greater dyspareunia, dysmenorrhea, and dyschezia compared with women with other gynecologic pathology (including uterine fibroids, pelvic adhesions, benign ovarian cysts, neoplasms and congenital Müllerian anomalies) or a normal pelvis.
WHAT IS KNOWN ALREADY
Prior research has shown that various treatments for pain associated with endometriosis can be effective, making identification of specific pain characteristics in relation to endometriosis necessary for informing disease diagnosis and management.
STUDY DESIGN, SIZE, DURATION
The study population for these analyses includes the ENDO Study (2007–2009) operative cohort: 473 women, ages 18–44 years, who underwent a diagnostic and/or therapeutic laparoscopy or laparotomy at one of 14 surgical centers located in Salt Lake City, UT or San Francisco, CA. Women with a history of surgically confirmed endometriosis were excluded.
PARTICIPANTS/MATERIALS, SETTING AND METHODS
Endometriosis was defined as surgically visualized disease; staging was based on revised American Society for Reproductive Medicine (rASRM) criteria. All women completed a computer-assisted personal interview at baseline specifying 17 types of pain (rating severity via 11-point visual analog scale) and identifying any of 35 perineal and 60 full-body front and 60 full-body back sites for which they experienced pain in the last 6 months.
MAIN RESULTS AND THE ROLE OF CHANCE
There was a high prevalence (≥30%) of chronic and cyclic pelvic pain reported by the entire study cohort regardless of post-operative diagnosis. However, women with a post-operative endometriosis diagnosis, compared with women diagnosed with other gynecologic disorders or a normal pelvis, reported more cyclic pelvic pain (49.5% versus 31.0% and 33.1%, P < 0.001). Additionally, women with endometriosis compared with women with a normal pelvis experienced more chronic pain (44.2 versus 30.2%, P = 0.04). Deep pain with intercourse, cramping with periods, and pain with bowel elimination were much more likely reported in women with versus without endometriosis (all P < 0.002). A higher percentage of women diagnosed with endometriosis compared with women with a normal pelvis reported vaginal (22.6 versus 10.3%, P < 0.01), right labial (18.4 versus 8.1%, P < 0.05) and left labial pain (15.3 versus 3.7%, P < 0.01) along with pain in the right/left hypogastric and umbilical abdominopelvic regions (P < 0.05 for all). Among women with endometriosis, no clear and consistent patterns emerged regarding pain characteristics and endometriosis staging or anatomic location.
LIMITATIONS, REASONS FOR CAUTION
Interpretation of our findings requires caution given that we were limited in our assessment of pain characteristics by endometriosis staging and anatomic location due to the majority of women having minimal (stage I) disease (56%) and lesions in peritoneum-only location (51%). Significance tests for pain topology related to gynecologic pathology were not corrected for multiple comparisons.
WIDER IMPLICATIONS OF THE FINDINGS
Results of our research suggest that while women with endometriosis appear to have higher pelvic pain, particularly dyspareunia, dysmenorrhea, dyschezia and pain in the vaginal and abdominopelvic area than women with other gynecologic disorders or a normal pelvis, pelvic pain is commonly reported among women undergoing laparoscopy, even among women with no identified gynecologic pathology. Future research should explore causes of pelvic pain among women who seek out gynecologic care but with no apparent gynecologic pathology. Given our and other's research showing little correlation between pelvic pain and rASRM staging among women with endometriosis, further development and use of a classification system that can better predict outcomes for endometriosis patients with pelvic pain for both surgical and nonsurgical treatment is needed.
STUDY FUNDING/COMPETING INTERESTS
Supported by the Intramural Research Program, Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (contracts NO1-DK-6-3428, NO1-DK-6-3427, and 10001406-02). The authors have no potential competing interests.
doi:10.1093/humrep/dev147
PMCID: PMC4573450  PMID: 26269529
endometriosis; epidemiology; laparoscopy; dysmenorrhea; dyspareunia
3.  Novel Syntrophic Populations Dominate an Ammonia-Tolerant Methanogenic Microbiome 
mSystems  2016;1(5):e00092-16.
The microbial production of methane or “biogas” is an attractive renewable energy technology that can recycle organic waste into biofuel. Biogas reactors operating with protein-rich substrates such as household municipal or agricultural wastes have significant industrial and societal value; however, they are highly unstable and frequently collapse due to the accumulation of ammonia. We report the discovery of a novel uncultured phylotype (unFirm_1) that is highly detectable in metaproteomic data generated from an ammonia-tolerant commercial reactor. Importantly, unFirm_1 is proposed to perform a key metabolic step in biogas microbiomes, whereby it syntrophically oxidizes acetate to hydrogen and carbon dioxide, which methanogens then covert to methane. Only very few culturable syntrophic acetate-oxidizing bacteria have been described, and all were detected at low in situ levels compared to unFirm_1. Broader comparisons produced the hypothesis that unFirm_1 is a key mediator toward the successful long-term stable operation of biogas production using protein-rich substrates.
ABSTRACT
Biogas reactors operating with protein-rich substrates have high methane potential and industrial value; however, they are highly susceptible to process failure because of the accumulation of ammonia. High ammonia levels cause a decline in acetate-utilizing methanogens and instead promote the conversion of acetate via a two-step mechanism involving syntrophic acetate oxidation (SAO) to H2 and CO2, followed by hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis. Despite the key role of syntrophic acetate-oxidizing bacteria (SAOB), only a few culturable representatives have been characterized. Here we show that the microbiome of a commercial, ammonia-tolerant biogas reactor harbors a deeply branched, uncultured phylotype (unFirm_1) accounting for approximately 5% of the 16S rRNA gene inventory and sharing 88% 16S rRNA gene identity with its closest characterized relative. Reconstructed genome and quantitative metaproteomic analyses imply unFirm_1’s metabolic dominance and SAO capabilities, whereby the key enzymes required for acetate oxidation are among the most highly detected in the reactor microbiome. While culturable SAOB were identified in genomic analyses of the reactor, their limited proteomic representation suggests that unFirm_1 plays an important role in channeling acetate toward methane. Notably, unFirm_1-like populations were found in other high-ammonia biogas installations, conjecturing a broader importance for this novel clade of SAOB in anaerobic fermentations.
IMPORTANCE The microbial production of methane or “biogas” is an attractive renewable energy technology that can recycle organic waste into biofuel. Biogas reactors operating with protein-rich substrates such as household municipal or agricultural wastes have significant industrial and societal value; however, they are highly unstable and frequently collapse due to the accumulation of ammonia. We report the discovery of a novel uncultured phylotype (unFirm_1) that is highly detectable in metaproteomic data generated from an ammonia-tolerant commercial reactor. Importantly, unFirm_1 is proposed to perform a key metabolic step in biogas microbiomes, whereby it syntrophically oxidizes acetate to hydrogen and carbon dioxide, which methanogens then covert to methane. Only very few culturable syntrophic acetate-oxidizing bacteria have been described, and all were detected at low in situ levels compared to unFirm_1. Broader comparisons produced the hypothesis that unFirm_1 is a key mediator toward the successful long-term stable operation of biogas production using protein-rich substrates.
doi:10.1128/mSystems.00092-16
PMCID: PMC5080403  PMID: 27822555
anaerobic digestion; biogas; metagenomics; metaproteomics; syntrophic acetate oxidation
4.  A Prediction Model of the Capillary Pressure J-Function 
PLoS ONE  2016;11(9):e0162123.
The capillary pressure J-function is a dimensionless measure of the capillary pressure of a fluid in a porous medium. The function was derived based on a capillary bundle model. However, the dependence of the J-function on the saturation Sw is not well understood. A prediction model for it is presented based on capillary pressure model, and the J-function prediction model is a power function instead of an exponential or polynomial function. Relative permeability is calculated with the J-function prediction model, resulting in an easier calculation and results that are more representative.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0162123
PMCID: PMC5014314  PMID: 27603701
5.  3d Transition Metal Adsorption Induced the valley-polarized Anomalous Hall Effect in Germanene 
Scientific Reports  2016;6:27830.
Based on DFT + U and Berry curvature calculations, we study the electronic structures and topological properties of 3d transition metal (TM) atom (from Ti to Co) adsorbed germanene (TM-germanene). We find that valley-polarized anomalous Hall effect (VAHE) can be realized in germanene by adsorbing Cr, Mn, or Co atoms on its surface. A finite valley Hall voltage can be easily detected in their nanoribbon, which is important for valleytronics devices. Moreover, different valley-polarized current and even reversible valley Hall voltage can be archived by shifting the Fermi energy of the systems. Such versatile features of the systems show potential in next generation electronics devices.
doi:10.1038/srep27830
PMCID: PMC4911552  PMID: 27312176
6.  PPAR-delta promotes survival of breast cancer cells in harsh metabolic conditions 
Oncogenesis  2016;5(6):e232-.
Expression of the nuclear receptor peroxisome proliferator activated receptor delta (PPARδ) in breast cancer cells is negatively associated with patient survival, but the underlying mechanisms are not clear. High PPARδ protein levels in rat breast adenocarcinomas were found to be associated with increased growth in soft agar and mice. Transgenic expression of PPARδ increased the ability of human breast cancer cell lines to migrate in vitro and form lung metastases in mice. PPARδ also conferred the ability to grow in exhausted tissue culture media and survive in low-glucose and other endoplasmic reticulum stress conditions such as hypoxia. Upregulation of PPARδ by glucocorticoids or synthetic agonists also protected human breast cancer cells from low glucose. Survival in low glucose was related to increased antioxidant defenses mediated in part by catalase and also to late AKT phosphorylation, which is associated with the prolonged glucose-deprivation response. Synthetic antagonists reversed the survival benefits conferred by PPARδ in vitro. These findings suggest that PPARδ conditions breast cancer cells to survive in harsh microenvironmental conditions by reducing oxidative stress and enhancing survival signaling responses. Drugs that target PPARδ may have a role in the treatment of breast cancer.
doi:10.1038/oncsis.2016.41
PMCID: PMC4945742  PMID: 27270614
7.  Potential years of life lost due to suicide in China, 2006–2010 
Public health  2015;129(5):555-560.
Objectives
To calculate the potential years of life lost (PYLL) due to suicide in China, and analyse the distribution of PYLL by age, sex and region.
Study design
The recent Chinese national mortality data (2006–2010) published by the Chinese Ministry of Health and the census data provided by the Chinese National Population Census were used to calculate PYLL due to suicide.
Methods
Age-, sex- and region-specific PYLL due to suicide in China were determined for victims aged between 1 and 74 years.
Results
Suicide was found to be the 10th leading cause of death in terms of PYLL, and accounted for 3.06% of all PYLL in China. There were three age peaks for PYLL due to suicide in rural areas (20–24, 35–44 and 50–59 years), and two peaks for PYLL due to suicide in urban areas (20–24 and 35–44 years). PYLL due to suicide in rural areas was approximately two-fold higher than PYLL due to suicide in urban areas.
Conclusions
Suicide is a major public health problem in China. This needs to be controlled, especially in rural areas.
doi:10.1016/j.puhe.2015.02.012
PMCID: PMC4442732  PMID: 25769349
Potential years of life lost; Suicide; Sex; Region; China
8.  Genetic differentiation and diversity of Callosobruchus chinensis collections from China 
Bulletin of Entomological Research  2015;106(1):124-134.
Callosobruchus chinensis (Linnaeus) is one of the most destructive pests of leguminous seeds. Genetic differentiation and diversity analysis of 345 C. chinensis individuals from 23 geographic populations using 20 polymorphic simple sequence repeats revealed a total of 149 alleles with an average of 7.45 alleles per locus. The average Shannon's information index was 1.015. The gene flow and genetic differentiation rate values at the 20 loci ranged from 0.201 to 1.841 and 11.0–47.2%, with averages of 0.849 and 24.4%, respectively. In the 23 geographic populations, the effective number of alleles and observed heterozygosity ranged from 1.441 to 2.218 and 0.191–0.410, respectively. Shannon's information index ranged from 0.357 to 0.949, with the highest value in Hohhot and the lowest in Rudong. In all comparisons, the fixation index (FST) values ranged from 0.049 to 0.441 with a total FST value of 0.254 among the 23 C. chinensis populations, indicating a moderate level of genetic differentiation and gene flow among these populations. Analysis of molecular variance revealed that the genetic variation within populations accounted for 76.7% of the total genetic variation. The genetic similarity values between populations varied from 0.617 to 0.969, whereas genetic distances varied from 0.032 to 0.483. Using unweighted pair-group method using arithmetical averages cluster analysis, the 23 geographic collections were classified into four distinct genetic groups but most of them were clustered into a single group. The pattern of the three concentrated groups from polymerase chain reactions analysis showed a somewhat different result with cluster.
doi:10.1017/S0007485315000863
PMCID: PMC4762245  PMID: 26548842
Callosobruchus chinensis; simple sequence repeat; geographic populations; genetic differentiation; genetic diversity
9.  Bisphenol A, benzophenone-type ultraviolet filters, and phthalates in relation to uterine leiomyoma 
Environmental research  2014;137:101-107.
Bisphenol A, benzophenone-type UV filters, and phthalates are chemicals in high production and use including in a range of personal care products. Exposure of humans to these chemicals has been shown to affect endocrine function. Although short-lived, widespread exposure may lead to continual opportunity for these chemicals to elicit health effects in humans. The association of these chemicals with incident uterine leiomyoma, an estrogen sensitive disease, is not known. Urinary concentrations of bisphenol A (BPA), five benzophenone-type UV filters (2-hydroxy-4-methoxybenzophenone (2OH-4MeO-BP), 2,4-dihydroxybenzophenone (2,4OH-BP), 2,2′-dihydroxybenzophenone (2,2′OH-4MeO-BP), 2,2′4,4′-tetrahydroxybenzophenone (2,2′4,4′OH-BP), and 4-hydroxybenzophenone (4OH-BP), and 14 phthalate monoesters were quantified in 495 women who later underwent laparoscopy/laparotomy at 14 clinical sites for the diagnosis of fibroids. Significantly higher geometric mean creatinine-corrected concentrations of BPA, 2,4OH-BP, and 2OH-4MeO-BP were observed in women with than without fibroids [BPA: 2.09 μg/g vs. 1.46 μg/g p=0.004; 2,4OH-BP:11.10 μg/g vs. 6.71 μg/g p=0.01; 2OH-4MeO-BP: 11.31 μg/g vs. 6.10 μg/g p=0.01]. Mono-methyl phthalate levels were significantly lower in women with than without fibroids (1.78 μg/g vs. 2.40 μg/g). However, none of the exposures were associated with a significant odds ratio even when adjusting for relevant covariates. There was a lack of an association between select nonpersistent chemicals and the odds of a fibroid diagnosis.
doi:10.1016/j.envres.2014.06.028
PMCID: PMC4355097  PMID: 25531814
benzophenone; bisphenol A; fibroid; phthalate; ultraviolet filter
10.  Unveiling the Mechanism for the Split Hysteresis Loop in Epitaxial Co2Fe1-xMnxAl Full-Heusler Alloy Films 
Scientific Reports  2016;6:18615.
Utilizing epitaxial Co2Fe1-xMnxAl full-Heusler alloy films on GaAs (001), we address the controversy over the analysis for the split hysteresis loop which is commonly found in systems consisting of both uniaxial and fourfold anisotropies. Quantitative comparisons are carried out on the values of the twofold and fourfold anisotropy fields obtained with ferromagnetic resonance and vibrating sample magnetometer measurements. The most suitable model for describing the split hysteresis loop is identified. In combination with the component resolved magnetization measurements, these results provide compelling evidences that the switching is caused by the domain wall nucleation and movements with the switching fields centered at the point where the energy landscape shows equal minima for magnetization orienting near the easy axis and the field supported hard axis.
doi:10.1038/srep18615
PMCID: PMC4702088  PMID: 26733075
11.  Parallel charge sheets of electron liquid and gas in La0.5Sr0.5TiO3/SrTiO3 heterostructures 
Scientific Reports  2015;5:18282.
We show here a new phenomenon in La0.5Sr0.5TiO3/SrTiO3 (LSTO/STO) heterostructures; that is a coexistence of three-dimensional electron liquid (3DEL) and 2D electron gas (2DEG), separated by an intervening insulating LSTO layer. The two types of carriers were revealed through multi-channel analysis of the evolution of nonlinear Hall effect as a function of film thickness, temperature and back gate voltage. We demonstrate that the 3D electron originates from La doping in LSTO film and the 2D electron at the surface of STO is due to the polar field in the intervening insulating layer. As the film thickness is reduced below a critical thickness of 6 unit cells (uc), an abrupt metal-to-insulator transition (MIT) occurs without an intermediate semiconducting state. The properties of the LSTO layer grown on different substrates suggest that the insulating phase of the intervening layer is a result of interface strain induced by the lattice mismatch between the film and substrate. Further, by fitting the magnetoresistance (MR) curves, the 6 unit cell thick LSTO is shown to exhibit spin-orbital coupling. These observations point to new functionalities, in addition to magnetism and superconductivity in STO-based systems, which could be exploited in a multifunctional context.
doi:10.1038/srep18282
PMCID: PMC4680910  PMID: 26669575
12.  Search for long-lived heavy charged particles using a ring imaging Cherenkov technique at LHCb 
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A search is performed for heavy long-lived charged particles using 3.0 \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$${\rm fb}^{-1}$$\end{document}fb-1 of proton–proton collisions collected at \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\sqrt{s}$$\end{document}s\documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$=$$\end{document}= 7 and 8  TeV with the LHCb detector. The search is mainly based on the response of the ring imaging Cherenkov detectors to distinguish the heavy, slow-moving particles from muons. No evidence is found for the production of such long-lived states. The results are expressed as limits on the Drell–Yan production of pairs of long-lived particles, with both particles in the LHCb pseudorapidity acceptance, \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$1.8 < \eta < 4.9$$\end{document}1.8<η<4.9. The mass-dependent cross-section upper limits are in the range 2–4 fb (at 95 % CL) for masses between 14 and 309 \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$${\mathrm {\,GeV\!/}c^2}$$\end{document}GeV/c2.
doi:10.1140/epjc/s10052-015-3809-7
PMCID: PMC4684630  PMID: 26709346
13.  Negative emotions affect postoperative scores for evaluating functional knee recovery and quality of life after total knee replacement 
This study aimed to determine whether psychological factors affect health-related quality of life (HRQL) and recovery of knee function in total knee replacement (TKR) patients. A total of 119 TKR patients (male: 38; female: 81) completed the Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI), Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), State Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI), Eysenck Personality Questionnaire-revised (EPQR-S), Knee Society Score (KSS), and HRQL (SF-36). At 1 and 6 months after surgery, anxiety, depression, and KSS scores in TKR patients were significantly better compared with those preoperatively (P<0.05). SF-36 scores at the sixth month after surgery were significantly improved compared with preoperative scores (P<0.001). Preoperative Physical Component Summary Scale (PCS) and Mental Component Summary Scale (MCS) scores were negatively associated with extraversion (E score) (B=-0.986 and -0.967, respectively, both P<0.05). Postoperative PCS and State Anxiety Inventory (SAI) scores were negatively associated with neuroticism (N score; B=-0.137 and -0.991, respectively, both P<0.05). Postoperative MCS, SAI, Trait Anxiety Inventory (TAI), and BAI scores were also negatively associated with the N score (B=-0.367, -0.107, -0.281, and -0.851, respectively, all P<0.05). The KSS function score at the sixth month after surgery was negatively associated with TAI and N scores (B=-0.315 and -0.532, respectively, both P<0.05), but positively associated with the E score (B=0.215, P<0.05). The postoperative KSS joint score was positively associated with postoperative PCS (B=0.356, P<0.05). In conclusion, for TKR patients, the scores used for evaluating recovery of knee function and HRQL after 6 months are inversely associated with the presence of negative emotions.
doi:10.1590/1414-431X20154616
PMCID: PMC4678652  PMID: 26577843
Total knee replacement; Negative emotion; Anxiety; Depression; Functional recovery; Health-related quality of life
14.  Association of tamoxifen use and increased diabetes among Asian women diagnosed with breast cancer 
British Journal of Cancer  2014;111(9):1836-1842.
Background:
We conducted a population-based cohort study to assess whether tamoxifen treatment is associated with an increased incidence of diabetes.
Methods:
Data obtained from the Taiwanese National Health Insurance Research Database were used for a population-based cohort study. The study cohort included 22 257 breast cancer patients diagnosed between 1 January 2000 and 31 December 2004. Among them, 15 210 cases received tamoxifen treatment and 7047 did not. Four subjects without breast cancer were frequency-matched by age and index year as the control group. Hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated using multivariate Cox proportional hazards regression analysis.
Results:
Breast cancer patients exhibited a 14% higher rate of developing diabetes (adjusted HR=1.14, 95% CI=1.08–1.20) compared with non-breast cancer controls, but the significant difference was limited to tamoxifen users. In addition, tamoxifen users exhibited a significantly increased risk of diabetes compared with non-tamoxifen users among women diagnosed with breast cancer (adjusted HR=1.31, 95% CI=1.19–1.45). Stratification by age groups indicated that both younger and older women diagnosed with breast cancer exhibited a significantly higher risk of diabetes than the normal control subjects did, and tamoxifen users consistently exhibited a significantly higher diabetes risk than non-tamoxifen users or normal control subjects did, regardless of age. Both recent and remote uses of tamoxifen were associated with an increased likelihood of diabetes.
Conclusions:
The results of this population-based cohort study suggested that tamoxifen use in breast cancer patients might increase subsequent diabetes risk. The underlying mechanism remains unclear and further larger studies are mandatory to validate our findings.
doi:10.1038/bjc.2014.488
PMCID: PMC4453737  PMID: 25225901
tamoxifen; breast cancer; diabetes; population-based; cohort study
15.  Genotranscriptomic meta-analysis of the Polycomb gene CBX2 in human cancers: initial evidence of an oncogenic role 
British Journal of Cancer  2014;111(8):1663-1672.
Background:
Polycomb group (PcG) proteins are histone modifiers known to transcriptionally silence key tumour suppressor genes in multiple human cancers. The chromobox proteins (CBX2, 4, 6, 7, and 8) are critical components of PcG-mediated repression. Four of them have been associated with tumour biology, but the role of CBX2 in cancer remains largely uncharacterised.
Methods:
Addressing this issue, we conducted a comprehensive and unbiased genotranscriptomic meta-analysis of CBX2 in human cancers using the COSMIC and Oncomine databases.
Results:
We discovered changes in gene expression that are suggestive of a widespread oncogenic role for CBX2. Our genetic analysis of 8013 tumours spanning 29 tissue types revealed no inactivating chromosomal aberrations and only 40 point mutations at the CBX2 locus. In contrast, the overall rate of CBX2 amplification averaged 10% in all combined neoplasms but exceeded 30% in ovarian, breast, and lung tumours. In addition, transcriptomic analyses revealed a strong tendency for increased CBX2 mRNA levels in many cancers compared with normal tissues, independently of CDKN2A/B silencing. Furthermore, CBX2 upregulation and amplification significantly correlated with metastatic progression and lower overall survival in many cancer types, particularly those of the breast.
Conclusions:
Overall, we report that the molecular profile of CBX2 is suggestive of an oncogenic role. As CBX2 has never been studied in human neoplasms, our results provide the rationale to further investigate the function of CBX2 in the context of cancer cells.
doi:10.1038/bjc.2014.474
PMCID: PMC4200100  PMID: 25225902
CBX2; polycomb; metastasis; prognosis; expression; breast; prostate; lung; meta-analysis
16.  RILP suppresses invasion of breast cancer cells by modulating the activity of RalA through interaction with RalGDS 
Wang, Z | Zhou, Y | Hu, X | Chen, W | Lin, X | Sun, L | Xu, X | Hong, W | Wang, T
Cell Death & Disease  2015;6(10):e1923-.
RILP (Rab7-interacting lysosomal protein) is a key regulator for late endosomal/lysosomal trafficking, and probably a tumor suppressor in prostate cancer. However, the role of RILP in other cancers and the underlying mechanism for RILP in regulating the invasion of cancer cells remain to be investigated. In this study, we showed that overexpression of RILP in breast cancer cells inhibits the migration and invasion, whereas the depletion of RILP by RNAi-mediated knockdown promotes the migration and invasion. We identified RalGDS (Ral guanine nucleotide dissociation stimulator) as a novel interacting partner for RILP, and truncation analysis revealed the N-terminal region of RILP is responsible for interacting with the guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) domain of RalGDS. Immunofluorescence microscopy revealed that RalGDS can be recruited to the late endosomal compartments by RILP. Further investigations indicated that the overexpression of RILP inhibits the activity of RalA, a downstream target of RalGDS. Our data suggest that RILP suppresses the invasion of breast cancer cells by interacting with RalGDS to inhibit its GEF activity for RalA.
doi:10.1038/cddis.2015.266
PMCID: PMC4632296  PMID: 26469971
17.  Spectroscopic study of Gd nanostructures quantum confined in Fe corrals 
Scientific Reports  2015;5:12092.
Low dimensional nanostructures have attracted attention due to their rich physical properties and potential applications. The essential factor for their functionality is their electronic properties, which can be modified by quantum confinement. Here the electronic states of Gd atom trapped in open Fe corrals on Ag(111) were studied via scanning tunneling spectroscopy. A single spectroscopic peak above the Fermi level is observed after Gd adatoms are trapped inside Fe corrals, while two peaks appear in empty corrals. The single peak position is close to the higher energy peak of the empty corrals. These findings, attributed to quantum confinement of the corrals and Gd structures trapped inside, are supported by tight-binding calculations. This demonstrates and provides insights into atom trapping in open corrals of various diameters, giving an alternative approach to modify the properties of nano-objects.
doi:10.1038/srep12092
PMCID: PMC4498218  PMID: 26160318
18.  Measurement of the \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\eta _c(1S)$$\end{document}ηc(1S) production cross-section in proton–proton collisions via the decay \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$${\eta _c(1S)\,{\rightarrow } \,{{{ p}}} \overline{{{{ p}}}}} $$\end{document}ηc(1S)→pp¯ 
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The production of the \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\eta _c (1S)$$\end{document}ηc(1S) state in proton-proton collisions is probed via its decay to the \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$p\overline{p}$$\end{document}pp¯ final state with the LHCb detector, in the rapidity range \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$2.0 < y < 4.5$$\end{document}2.0 6.5 \mathrm{{\,GeV/}{ c}} $$\end{document}pT>6.5GeV/c. The cross-section for prompt production of \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\eta _c (1S)$$\end{document}ηc(1S) mesons relative to the prompt \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$${{ J}}/{\psi } $$\end{document}J/ψ cross-section is measured, for the first time, to be \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\sigma _{\eta _c (1S)}/\sigma _{{{{ J}}/{\psi }}} = 1.74\, \pm \,0.29\, \pm \, 0.28\, \pm \,0.18 _{{\mathcal{B}}}$$\end{document}σηc(1S)/σJ/ψ=1.74±0.29±0.28±0.18B at a centre-of-mass energy \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$${\sqrt{s}} = 7 {~\mathrm{TeV}}$$\end{document}s=7TeV using data corresponding to an integrated luminosity of 0.7 fb\documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$^{-1}$$\end{document}-1, and \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\sigma _{\eta _c (1S)}/\sigma _{{{{ J}}/{\psi }}} = 1.60 \pm 0.29 \pm 0.25 \pm 0.17 _{{\mathcal{B}}}$$\end{document}σηc(1S)/σJ/ψ=1.60±0.29±0.25±0.17B at \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$${\sqrt{s}} = 8 {~\mathrm{TeV}}$$\end{document}s=8TeV using 2.0 fb\documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$^{-1}$$\end{document}-1. The uncertainties quoted are, in order, statistical, systematic, and that on the ratio of branching fractions of the \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\eta _c (1S)$$\end{document}ηc(1S) and \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$${{ J}}/{\psi } $$\end{document}J/ψ decays to the \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$p\overline{p}$$\end{document}pp¯ final state. In addition, the inclusive branching fraction of \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$${b} $$\end{document}b-hadron decays into \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\eta _c (1S)$$\end{document}ηc(1S) mesons is measured, for the first time, to be \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$${\mathcal{B}}( b {\rightarrow } \eta _c X ) = (4.88\, \pm \,0.64\, \pm \,0.29\, \pm \, 0.67 _{{\mathcal{B}}}) \times 10^{-3}$$\end{document}B(b→ηcX)=(4.88±0.64±0.29±0.67B)×10-3, where the third uncertainty includes also the uncertainty on the \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$${{ J}}/{\psi } $$\end{document}J/ψ inclusive branching fraction from \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$${b} $$\end{document}b-hadron decays. The difference between the \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$${{ J}}/{\psi } $$\end{document}J/ψ and \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\eta _c (1S)$$\end{document}ηc(1S) meson masses is determined to be \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$114.7 \pm 1.5 \pm 0.1 {\mathrm {\,MeV\!/}c^2} $$\end{document}114.7±1.5±0.1MeV/c2.
doi:10.1140/epjc/s10052-015-3502-x
PMCID: PMC4498677  PMID: 26190939
19.  Optical probe for surface and subsurface defects induced by ion bombardment 
Physica Status Solidi  2013;7(4):301-304.
We demonstrate that reflectance difference spectroscopy (RDS) is sensitive to defects induced by ion bombardment, located either in the topmost layer or in the subsurface region. Most importantly, these two kinds of defects can be spectrally discriminated, since the corresponding signatures in the RD spectrum arise from perturbations of different types of electronic states: The defects in the topmost surface layer mainly lead to a quenching of the optical anisotropy related to surface states, whereas the subsurface defects strongly affect the optical anisotropy originating from transitions between surface-modified bulk electronic states. Consequently, RDS can be used to simultaneously monitor the defects in the topmost surface layer and in the subsurface region in-situ during ion bombardment and thermal annealing.
Characteristic RD spectra and the corresponding STM images for a Cu(110) substrate before and after healing of the subsurface defects.
doi:10.1002/pssr.201307088
PMCID: PMC4461859  PMID: 26089989
metal surfaces; ion bombardment; reflectance difference spectroscopy; optical anisotropy; surface defects; bulk defects
20.  GSK3 is a regulator of RAR-mediated differentiation 
Leukemia  2012;26(6):1277-1285.
Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is the most common form of leukemia in adults. Unfortunately, the standard therapeutic agents used for this disease have high toxicities and poor efficacy. The one exception to these poor outcomes is the use of the retinoid, all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA), for a rare subtype of AML (APL). The use of the differentiation agent, ATRA, in combination with low-dose chemotherapy leads to the long-term survival and presumed cure of 75–85% of patients. Unfortunately ATRA has not been clinically useful for other subtypes of AML. Though many non-APL leukemic cells respond to ATRA, they require significantly higher concentrations of ATRA for effective differentiation. Here we show that the combination of ATRA with glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3) inhibition significantly enhances ATRA-mediated AML differentiation and growth inhibition. These studies have revealed that ATRA's receptor, the retinoic acid receptor (RAR), is a novel target of GSK3 phosphorylation and that GSK3 can impact the expression and transcriptional activity of the RAR. Overall, our studies suggest the clinical potential of ATRA and GSK3 inhibition for AML and provide a mechanistic framework to explain the promising activity of this combination regimen.
doi:10.1038/leu.2012.2
PMCID: PMC4458365  PMID: 22222598
AML; differentiation; retinoids
21.  Search for long-lived particles decaying to jet pairs 
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A search is presented for long-lived particles with a mass between 25 and 50 \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\mathrm{GeV}/\mathrm{c}^{2}$$\end{document}GeV/c2 and a lifetime between 1 and 200\documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\mathrm{\,ps}$$\end{document}ps in a sample of proton–proton collisions at a centre-of-mass energy of \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\sqrt{s}=7$$\end{document}s=7 TeV, corresponding to an integrated luminosity of 0.62 \documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \usepackage{amsmath} \usepackage{wasysym} \usepackage{amsfonts} \usepackage{amssymb} \usepackage{amsbsy} \usepackage{mathrsfs} \usepackage{upgreek} \setlength{\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \begin{document}$$\text{ fb }^{-1}$$\end{document}fb-1, collected by the LHCb detector. The particles are assumed to be pair-produced by the decay of a standard model-like Higgs boson. The experimental signature of the long-lived particle is a displaced vertex with two associated jets. No excess above the background is observed and limits are set on the production cross-section as a function of the long-lived particle mass and lifetime.
doi:10.1140/epjc/s10052-015-3344-6
PMCID: PMC4423877  PMID: 25983649
22.  Testes-specific protease 50 promotes cell invasion and metastasis by increasing NF-kappaB-dependent matrix metalloproteinase-9 expression 
Cell Death & Disease  2015;6(3):e1703-.
The high mortality in breast cancer is often associated with metastatic progression in patients. Previously we have demonstrated that testes-specific protease 50 (TSP50), an oncogene overexpressed in breast cancer samples, could promote cell proliferation and tumorigenesis. However, whether TSP50 also has a key role in cell invasion and cancer metastasis, and the mechanism underlying the process are still unclear. Here we found that TSP50 overexpression greatly promoted cell migration, invasion, adhesion and formation of the stellate structures in 3D culture system in vitro as well as lung metastasis in vivo. Conversely, TSP50 knockdown caused the opposite changes. Mechanistic studies revealed that NF-κB signaling pathway was required for TSP50-induced cell migration and metastasis, and further results indicated that TSP50 overexpression enhanced expression and secretion of MMP9, a target gene of NF-κB signaling. In addition, knockdown of MMP9 resulted in inhibition of cell migration and invasion in vitro and lung metastasis in vivo. Most importantly, immunohistochemical staining of human breast cancer samples strongly showed that the coexpression of TSP50 and p65 as well as TSP50 and MMP9 were correlated with increased metastasis and poor survival. Furthermore, we found that some breast cancer diagnosis-associated features such as tumor size, tumor grade, estrogen receptors (ER) and progesterone receptors (PR) levels, were correlated well with TSP50/p65 and TSP50/MMP9 expression status. Taken together, this work identified the TSP50 activation of MMP9 as a novel signaling mechanism underlying human breast cancer invasion and metastasis.
doi:10.1038/cddis.2015.61
PMCID: PMC4385939  PMID: 25811800
23.  Celastrol induces apoptosis and autophagy via the ROS/JNK signaling pathway in human osteosarcoma cells: an in vitro and in vivo study 
Cell Death & Disease  2015;6(1):e1604-.
Osteosarcoma is the most common primary malignant tumor of bone, the long-term survival of which has stagnated in the past several decades. Celastrol, a triterpene from traditional Chinese medicine, has been proved to possess potent anti-tumor effect on various cancers. However, the effect of celastrol on human osteosarcoma and the underlying mechanisms remains to be elucidated. We reported here that celastrol could inhibit cell proliferation by causing G2/M phase arrest. Exposure to celastrol resulted in the activation of caspase-3, -8, and -9, indicating that celastrol induced apoptosis through both extrinsic and intrinsic pathways. Autophagy occurred in celastrol-treated cells as evidenced by formation of autophagosome and accumulation of LC3B-II. The celastrol-induced cell death was remarkably restored by the combination of autophagy and apoptosis inhibitors. Furthermore, inhibition of apoptosis enhanced autophagy while suppression of autophagy diminished apoptosis. Celastrol also induced JNK activation and ROS generation. The JNK inhibitor significantly attenuated celastrol-triggered apoptosis and autophagy while ROS scavenger could completely reverse them. The ROS scavenger also prevented G2/M phase arrest and phosphorylation of JNK. Importantly, we found that celastrol had the similar effects on primary osteosarcoma cells. Finally, in vivo, celastrol suppressed tumor growth in the mouse xenograft model. Taken together, our results revealed that celastrol caused G2/M phase arrest, induced apoptosis and autophagy via the ROS/JNK signaling pathway in human osteosarcoma cells. Celastrol is therefore a promising candidate for development of antitumor drugs targeting osteosarcoma.
doi:10.1038/cddis.2014.543
PMCID: PMC4669742  PMID: 25611379
24.  A Glimpse of Matrix Metalloproteinases in Diabetic Nephropathy 
Current medicinal chemistry  2014;21(28):3244-3260.
Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are proteolytic enzymes belonging to the family of zinc-dependent endopeptidases that are capable of degrading almost all the proteinaceous components of the extracellular matrix (ECM). It is known that MMPs play a role in a number of renal diseases, such as, various forms of glomerulonephritis and tubular diseases, including some of the inherited kidney diseases. In this regard, ECM accumulation is considered to be a hallmark morphologic finding of diabetic nephropathy, which not only is related to the excessive synthesis of matrix proteins, but also to their decreased degradation by the MMPs. In recent years, increasing evidence suggest that there is a good correlation between the activity or expression of MMPs and progression of renal disease in patients with diabetic nephropathy in humans and in various experimental animal models. In such a diabetic milieu, the expression of MMPs is modulated by high glucose, advanced glycation end products (AGEs), TGF-β, reactive oxygen species (ROS), transcription factors and some of the microRNAs. In this review, we focused on the structure and functions of MMPs, and their role in the pathogenesis of diabetic nephropathy.
PMCID: PMC4281028  PMID: 25039784
Diabetic nephropathy; extracellular matrix; metalloproteinases; TGF-β

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