To assess whether exon deletions or duplications in CLCN1 are associated with recessive myotonia congenita (MC).
We performed detailed clinical and electrophysiologic characterization in 60 patients with phenotypes consistent with MC. DNA sequencing of CLCN1 followed by multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification to screen for exon copy number variation was undertaken in all patients.
Exon deletions or duplications in CLCN1 were identified in 6% of patients with MC. Half had heterozygous exonic rearrangements. The other 2 patients (50%), with severe disabling infantile onset myotonia, were identified with both a homozygous mutation, Pro744Thr, which functional electrophysiology studies suggested was nonpathogenic, and a triplication/homozygous duplication involving exons 8–14, suggesting an explanation for the severe phenotype.
These data indicate that copy number variation in CLCN1 may be an important cause of recessive MC. Our observations suggest that it is important to check for exon deletions and duplications as part of the genetic analysis of patients with recessive MC, especially in patients in whom sequencing identifies no mutations or only a single recessive mutation. These results also indicate that additional, as yet unidentified, genetic mechanisms account for cases not currently explained by either CLCN1 point mutations or exonic deletions or duplications.
Acetazolamide has been the most commonly used treatment for hypokalemic periodic paralysis since 1968. However, its mechanism of efficacy is not fully understood, and it is not known whether therapy response relates to genotype. We undertook a clinical and genetic study to evaluate the response rate of patients treated with acetazolamide and to investigate possible correlations between response and genotype.
We identified a total of 74 genotyped patients for this study. These included patients who were referred over a 15-year period to the only UK referral center or to a Chinese center and who underwent extensive clinical evaluation. For all genotyped patients, the response to acetazolamide therapy in terms of attack frequency and severity was documented. Direct DNA sequencing of CACNA1S and SCN4A was performed.
Only 46% of the total patient cohort (34 of 74) reported benefit from acetazolamide. There was a greater chance of benefit in patients with mutations in CACNA1S (31 responded of 55 total) than in those with mutations in SCN4A (3 responded of 19 total). Patients with mutations that resulted in amino acids being substituted by glycine in either gene were the least likely to report benefit.
This retrospective study indicates that only approximately 50% of genotyped patients with hypokalemic periodic paralysis respond to acetazolamide. We found evidence supporting a relationship between genotype and treatment response. Prospective randomized controlled trials are required to further evaluate this relationship. Development of alternative therapies is required.
A proximal myopathy develops in some patients with muscle channelopathies, but the causative molecular mechanisms are unknown.
We reviewed retrospectively all clinical and muscle biopsy findings of three patients with channelopathy and additional myositis. Direct DNA sequencing was performed.
Pathogenic mutations were identified in each case. Biopsies illustrated inflammatory infiltrates.
Clinicians should consider muscle biopsy in channelopathy patients with severe myalgia and/or subacute weakness and accompanying elevated CK. Chance association of myositis and channelopathy is statistically unlikely. An alternative hypothesis suggests that inflammatory insults could contribute to myopathy in some patients.
neuromuscular; channelopathy; myositis; histopathology; treatment
The non-dystrophic myotonias are an important group of skeletal muscle channelopathies electrophysiologically characterized by altered membrane excitability. Many distinct clinical phenotypes are now recognized and range in severity from severe neonatal myotonia with respiratory compromise through to milder late-onset myotonic muscle stiffness. Specific genetic mutations in the major skeletal muscle voltage gated chloride channel gene and in the voltage gated sodium channel gene are causative in most patients. Recent work has allowed more precise correlations between the genotype and the electrophysiological and clinical phenotype. The majority of patients with myotonia have either a primary or secondary loss of membrane chloride conductance predicted to result in reduction of the resting membrane potential. Causative mutations in the sodium channel gene result in an abnormal gain of sodium channel function that may show marked temperature dependence. Despite significant advances in the clinical, genetic and molecular pathophysiological understanding of these disorders, which we review here, there are important unresolved issues we address: (i) recent work suggests that specialized clinical neurophysiology can identify channel specific patterns and aid genetic diagnosis in many cases however, it is not yet clear if such techniques can be refined to predict the causative gene in all cases or even predict the precise genotype; (ii) although clinical experience indicates these patients can have significant progressive morbidity, the detailed natural history and determinants of morbidity have not been specifically studied in a prospective fashion; (iii) some patients develop myopathy, but its frequency, severity and possible response to treatment remains undetermined, furthermore, the pathophysiogical link between ion channel dysfunction and muscle degeneration is unknown; (iv) there is currently insufficient clinical trial evidence to recommend a standard treatment. Limited data suggest that sodium channel blocking agents have some efficacy. However, establishing the effectiveness of a therapy requires completion of multi-centre randomized controlled trials employing accurate outcome measures including reliable quantitation of myotonia. More specific pharmacological approaches are required and could include those which might preferentially reduce persistent muscle sodium currents or enhance the conductance of mutant chloride channels. Alternative strategies may be directed at preventing premature mutant channel degradation or correcting the mis-targeting of the mutant channels.
ion channels; neuromuscular; genetics; EMG
Several missense mutations of CACNA1S and SCN4A genes occur in hypokalemic periodic paralysis. These mutations affect arginine residues in the S4 voltage sensors of the channel. Approximately 20% of cases remain genetically undefined.
We undertook direct automated DNA sequencing of the S4 regions of CACNA1S and SCN4A in 83 cases of hypokalemic periodic paralysis.
We identified reported CACNA1S mutations in 64 cases. In the remaining 19 cases, mutations in SCN4A or other CACNA1S S4 segments were found in 10, including three novel changes and the first mutations in channel domains I (SCN4A) and III (CACNA1S).
All mutations affected arginine residues, consistent with the gating pore cation leak hypothesis of hypokalemic periodic paralysis. Arginine mutations in S4 segments underlie 90% of hypokalemic periodic paralysis cases.
= hypokalemic periodic paralysis.
Data sources:Data were collected from published literature. Searches for adolescent prevention were conducted using PubMed, PsycInfo, and ERIC; and for cessation, PubMed, and two major reviews that span January 1978 to May 2002. PubMed, PsychInfo, and SCCI were searched for young adults from January 1990 to May 2002.
Study selection:Data included smoking prevention studies published from January 1990 to May 2002 and conducted in the USA; all identified smoking cessation studies for adolescents. Young adult data were limited to initiation and cessation studies.
Data extraction:Extraction of data was by consensus of the authors.
Data synthesis:Results of the review are qualitative in nature using a consensus approach of the authors.
Conclusions:School based curricula alone have been generally ineffective in the long term in preventing adolescents from initiating tobacco use but are effective when combined with other approaches such as media and smoke-free policies. Prevention research should consider multiple approaches and the social conditions that influence the development of youth problem behaviours including tobacco use. Because youth smoking cessation has been understudied to date, scientifically rigorous adolescent smoking cessation studies need to be conducted with attention to high risk smokers and less than daily smokers. Tobacco prevention and cessation for young adults needs focused attention. Prevention and cessation programmes need to address other tobacco products in addition to cigarettes.
The objective of this study is to determine if a non-immunogenic Dunning’s rat prostate cancer cell line, MATLyLu, can become immunogenic by reducing the endogenous production of TGF-β1. An expression construct containing a DNA sequence in an antisense orientation to TGF-β1 (TGF-β1 antisense) was stably transfected into MATLyLu cells. Following transfection, cellular content of TGF-β1 reduced from 70 to10 pg per 2 × 104cells and the rate of in vitro3H-thymidine incorporation increased 3–5-fold. After subcutaneous injection of tumour cells into syngeneic male hosts (Copenhagen rats), the tumour incidence was 100% (15/15) for the wild type MATLyLu cells and cells transfected with the control construct, but only 43% (9/21, P≤ 0.05) for cells transfected with TGF-β1 antisense. However, when cells were injected into immunodeficient hosts (athymic nude rats), the incidence of tumour development was 100% (10/10) for both the wild type MATLyLu cells and cells transfected with the control construct and 90% (9/10) for cells transfected with TGF-β1 antisense. These observations support the concept that MATLyLu cells are immunogenic, when the endogenous production of TGF-β1 is down-regulated. © 2000 Cancer Research Campaign
TGF-β; expression; rat prostate cancer; immunogenicity; tumour incidence; host–tumour interaction
We have shown that addition of exogenous delta-aminolaevulinic acid (ALA) to rat pancreatoma AR4-2J cells in culture leads to the increased production of porphobilinogen (PBG) and the accumulation of photoactive protoporphyrin IX (PPix) in these cells. Exposure to light (lambda > 400 nm) at an intensity of 0.2 mW cm-2 for 8 min resulted in an ALA dose-dependent cytolysis of the cells, with an EC50 of 6.6 +/- 0.7 microM. This cytolytic effect was light intensity dependent, with greater cell destruction after exposure to light at an intensity of 0.47 mW cm-2 than at 0.2 mW cm-2; it was also dependent on the duration of illumination, cell survival decreasing with increasing illumination times. The photodestruction of the AR4-2J cells following exposure to ALA can be attributed to the production of endogenous PPix, a photoactive porphyrin that we have shown to generate singlet oxygen upon illumination, whereas ALA itself does not. Further investigation of the molecular mechanisms underlying the photodynamic action of ALA demonstrated the involvement of the mitochondrial (peripheral) benzodiazepine receptor (MBR), a high-affinity recognition site for dicarboxylic porphyrins, and especially PPix. The centrally acting benzodiazepine compounds clonazepam and flumazenil, which have negligible affinities for the MBR, had no effect on ALA-mediated phototoxicity. In contrast, both the isoquinoline carboxamide PK11195 and the benzodiazepine Ro 5-4864 ligands, displaying a high affinity for the MBR, did affect ALA-mediated phototoxicity, each markedly increasing the EC50 for cell photodestruction and thus exerting a photoprotective effect. It is concluded that the MBR may play an important role in the expression of ALA-mediated PPix phototoxicity and that MBR ligands, by diminishing the actions of endogenous PPix, have the potential to rescue cells from porphyrin-induced photolysis.
Important differences exist in the responses to photodynamic agents of normal and tumour-derived pancreatic acinar cells. In the present study amylase release has been used to assess the mechanisms by which the photodynamic drugs tetra- and disulphonated aluminium phthalocyanine (A1PcS4, A1PcS2) act on pancreatic cells via energy and calcium-dependent activation and transduction pathways. The photodynamic release of amylase was found to be energy dependent and inhibited by the chelation of free cytoplasmic calcium but not by the removal of extracellular calcium. In contrast to their effects on normal acinar cells, the photodynamic action of A1PcS4 and A1PcS2 was to inhibit amylase secretion from pancreatoma AR4-2J cells. Removal of extracellular calcium reversed this inhibitory effect on AR4-2J cells and produced a significant increase in amylase release, but chelation of free cytoplasmic calcium did not affect the inhibitory photodynamic action of the phthalocyanines on amylase release from the tumour cells. Overall, these results demonstrate further important distinctions between the photodynamic action of sulphonated aluminium phthalocyanines on normal versus tumour exocrine cells of the pancreas and indicate that calcium plays an important role in photodynamic drug action, since these agents affected intracellular calcium mobilisation at some distal point in the membrane signal transduction pathway for regulated secretion. Furthermore, the photodynamic inhibition of constitutive secretion in tumour cells may involve a calcium-dependent membrane target site or modulation of membrane calcium channels by activation of protein kinase C.
This report describes the activities of 168 chemicals tested in a standard transformation assay using A-31-1-13 BALB/c-3T3 cells. The data set includes 84 carcinogens, 77 noncarcinogens, and 7 research chemicals. Carcinogens included 49 mutagens and 35 nonmutagens; noncarcinogens included 24 mutagens and 53 nonmutagens. The transformation assay did not use an exogenous activation system, thus, all chemical responses depended on the inherent target cell metabolic capacity where metabolic activation was required. The upper dose limit was 100 milli-osmolar because the assay could not discriminate active and inactive chemicals tested above this concentration. Certain physicochemical properties resulted in technical problems that affected chemical biological activity. For example, chemicals that reacted with plastic were usually nonmutagenic carcinogens. Similarly, chemicals that were insoluble in medium, or bound metals, were usually nonmutagenic and nontransforming. Multifactorial data analyses revealed that the transformation assay discriminated between nonmutagenic carcinogens and noncarcinogens; it detected 64% of the carcinogens and only 26% of the noncarcinogens. In contrast, the transformation assay detected most mutagenic chemicals, including 94% of the mutagenic carcinogens and 70% of the mutagenic noncarcinogens. Thus, transformation or Salmonella typuimurium mutagenicity assays could not discriminate mutagenic carcinogens from mutagenic noncarcinogens. Data analyses also revealed that mutagenic chemicals were more cytotoxic than nonmutagenic chemicals; 88% of the mutagens had an LD50 < 5 mM, whereas half of the nonmutagens had an LD50 > 5 mM. Binary data analyses of the same data set revealed that the transformation assay and rodent bioassay had a concordance of 71%, a sensitivity for carcinogens of 80.0%, and a specificity for detecting noncarcinogens of 60%. In contrast, Salmonella mutagenicity assays and rodent bioassays had a concordance of 63%, a sensitivity of 58%, and a specificity of 69%. The transformation assay complemented the Salmonella mutagenesis assay in the identification of nonmutagenic carcinogens; thus, the two assays had a combined 83% sensitivity for all carcinogens and a 75% specificity for nonmutagenic noncarcinogens.
A co-culture clonal survival assay was developed to measure the cytotoxicity of test chemical treatments to BALB/c-3T3 cells because the standard clonal survival assay using 200 wild type (WT) cells frequently overestimates chemical cytotoxicity when compared with identical treatment doses in high-density cultures. The assay used co-cultures of 3.2 x 10(4) WT cells, the same seeding density used in the transformation assay, and 200 ouabain resistant (OUAr) cells. After a 48-hr test chemical treatment, co-cultured cells were fed with culture medium containing 4 mM ouabain. The test chemical was cytotoxic to an equal percentage of WT and OUAr cells. Ouabain treatments killed the remaining WT cells. Thus, OUAr cells surviving the test chemical treatment measured the relative cloning efficiency (RCE) of all treated cells in the high-density cell co-culture. The co-culture assay succeeded because metabolic cooperation at the OUAr locus was not detected in BALB/c-3T3 cells. Five chemicals induced comparable cytotoxic responses in both assays, including actinomycin D, 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine, N'-methyl-N-nitro-N'-nitrosoguanidine, dimethyl sulfoxide and sodium chloride. In contrast, chemical cytotoxic responses detected in the standard and co-culture assays differed by > or = 10-fold for 11-aminoundecanoic acid, benzo[a]pyrene, cytosine arabinoside, and 3-methyl-cholanthrene and differed by > 2-fold for 2-acetylaminofluorene and dimethylnitrosamine. Detection of 11-aminoundecanoic acid-induced transformation was shown to be dependent on selecting treatment doses from the co-culture assay data. Thus, this method permits more accurate assessment of both chemical-induced cytotoxicity and transformation.
This report introduces an improved method of detecting chemical-induced morphological transformation of A-31-1-13 BALB/c-3T3 cells. The new procedure uses an increased target cell population to assess chemical-induced damage by increasing the initial seeding density and by delaying the initiation time of chemical treatment. Furthermore, a newly developed co-culture clonal survival assay was used to select chemical doses for the transformation assay. This assay measured the relative cloning efficiency (RCE) of chemical treatments in high-density cell cultures. In addition, transformation assay sensitivity was enhanced through the use of improved methods to solubilize many chemicals. From a group of 24 chemicals tested in at least two trials, clear evidence of chemical-induced transformation was detected for 12 chemicals (aphidicolin, barium chloride-2H2O, 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine, C.I. direct blue 15, trans-cinnamaldehyde, cytosine arabinoside, diphenylnitrosamine, manganese sulfate-H2O, 2-mercaptobenzimidazole, mezerein, riddelliine, and 2,6-xylidine); 2 chemicals had equivocal activity [C.I. direct blue 218 and mono(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate], 9 chemicals were inactive [carisoprodol, chloramphenicol sodium succinate, 4-chloro-2-nitroaniline, C.I. acid red 114, isobutyraldehyde, mono(2-ethylhexyl)adipate, sodium fluoride, and 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate), and 1 chemical had an indeterminate response (2,6-dinitrotoluene). All positive responses were detected in the absence of an exogenous activation system and exhibited significant activity at two or more consecutive doses. This report also presents a mathematical method that uses t-statistics for rank-ordering the potency of chemical-induced transformation responses. This model detects sensitivity differences in experiments used to evaluate chemical-induced transformation. Furthermore, it provides a method to estimate a chemical's transformation response in terms of the historical behavior of the assay, as well as its future activity. The most active of the 24 chemicals was mezerein, and the least active chemical was diphenylnitrosamine.
The frequency of spontaneous morphological transformation is an important variable in measuring chemical-induced transformation in BALB/c-3T3 clone A-31-1-13 cell cultures. Data from 110 experiments, which included benzo[a]pyrene control groups and other chemical treatment groups, were analyzed for factors that influenced spontaneous transformation. Spontaneous transformants demonstrated a continuum of morphological variants (type I, II, and III foci) that fit a normal distribution if converted to log10. The magnitude of transformation depended on the ampule of cryopreserved cells and the serum lot. Although the average frequency was approximately 0.71 x 10(-6) (type III foci/cell that survived and proliferated to confluence), the absolute number of foci/vessel increased in proportion to the surface area of the culture vessel. Thus, the frequency of spontaneous transformation was directly related to the cumulative number of mitoses that occurred in forming the contact-inhibited monolayer. These data are consistent with a hypothesis that spontaneous transformation in BALB/c-3T3 cells is a mutational event or some other single-step phenomenon.
Benzo[a]pyrene (BaP) induced significant morphological transformation of clone A31-1-13 BALB/c-3T3 cells without exogenous activation. Therefore, BaP was selected as a model to determine the internal consistency of detection of chemical-induced transformation. BaP induced a continuum of type I-III foci of different sizes, and the ratio of type I-III to type III foci/vessel was usually about 2-fold. The major finding was that BaP induced highly significant transformation responses, and the magnitude of these responses were inversely correlated with the cytotoxicity of the treatment doses. Thus, the induction of BaP-induced transformation behaved as though it was caused by a mutational event. Variability among responses were shown to depend on the serum lot and the cryopreserved ampule of cells. In addition, experiments with low spontaneous transformation responses had an impaired ability to detect BaP; however, experiments with high or normal spontaneous responses had a normal ability to detect BaP. Because the expression of BaP-induced transformation depended on both the cytotoxicity of the treatment and the cumulative number of mitoses, the frequency of BaP-induced transformation should be reported as the number of foci/vessel, but not expressed as the number of foci/viable cell surviving the chemical treatment. These conclusions are important because the same 110 experiments described in this report were also used to evaluate the transformation responses of many different carcinogenic and noncarcinogenic chemicals. These data are being reported separately.
The photodynamic effects of sulphonated aluminium phthalocyanine (SALPC) have been compared on cultured AR4-2J cells of a pancreatic carcinoma cell line and on exocrine cells of the normal phenotype freshly isolated from the rat pancreas; a multi-channel perifusion system was used for this kinetic study in vitro. Whereas light alone or SALPC alone was without effect on either cell type, photon activation of cellularly-bound SALPC with light greater than 570 nm permeabilised the cells and caused an increase in amylase secretion from normal acinar cells but a dose-dependent inhibition (10(-7) to 10(-5) M) of amylase release from AR4-2J cells. In contrast, direct permeabilisation of the plasma membrane with digitonin, 10 micrograms ml-1, evoked a marked release of amylase from both types of cell. Elevation of [Ca2+]i by the ionophore A23187, 10(-6) M, elicited secretion of amylase from normal cells but had little effect on AR4-2J cells. Finally, it was established that the differential photodynamic effects of SALPC on amylase release were not attributable to any topographical differences in the microanatomical organisation of normal or tumour-derived cells; furthermore, the structural integrity of normal and AR4-2J cells was maintained after the photodynamic action of SALPC. It is concluded that the generation of singlet oxygen is responsible for permeabilisation of both types of cell and that photon-activated SALPC has functionally distinct effects on the constitutive secretion of amylase of tumour cells and the regulated secretory pathway of normal cells. These observations may be important in the development of drugs with a selective photodynamic action on pancreatic tumour cells.
The contention that paternalism can be modernised in such a way as to avoid the usual criticisms is examined and dismissed. The alleged 'modernisation' consists simply in going through the motions of achieving the patient's free consent, while leaving the ultimate decision to the physician. Paternalism in this form is no better than the more old-fashioned variety, since it still takes away from patients the fundamental human right to make decisions about their own fate.
Obstetric and neonatal data on 155 domiciliary deliveries were analysed. The findings illustrated the problems in adhering to generally recognised risk criteria for selecting cases for domiciliary confinement and the unpredictability of events in the newborn period. Awareness of the risks of home confinement have led to increased efforts to achieve 100% hospital delivery. At the West Middlesex Hospital, to make hospital confinement more acceptable to mothers, we have tried to alter inflexible hospital routines and to make previously austere labour wards less impersonal. The same midwife who has supervised the antenatal period brings the mother into the unit, and transfers her home as soon as possible afterwards..