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1.  Comprehensive biomarker analysis and final efficacy results of sorafenib in the BATTLE (Biomarker-Integrated Approaches of Targeted Therapy for Lung Cancer Elimination) trial 
To report the clinical efficacy of sorafenib and to evaluate biomarkers associated with sorafenib clinical benefit in the BATTLE program.
Patients and Methods
Patients with previously treated non-small–cell lung cancer (NSCLC) received sorafenib until progression or unacceptable toxicity. Eight-week disease control rate (DCR), progression-free survival (PFS), and overall survival (OS) were assessed. Prespecified biomarkers included K-RAS, EGFR, and B-RAF mutations, and EGFR gene copy number. Gene expression profiles from NSCLC cell lines and patient tumor biopsies with wild-type EGFR were used to develop a sorafenib sensitivity signature (SSS).
105 patients were eligible and randomized to receive sorafenib. Among 98 patients evaluable for 8-week DCR, the observed DCR was 58.2%. The median PFS and OS were 2.83 (95% confidence interval [CI], 2.04-3.58) and 8.48 months (95% CI, 5.78-10.97), respectively. Eight-week DCR was higher in patients with wt-EGFR than patients with EGFR mutation (P=0.012), and in patients with EGFR gene copy number gain (FISH positive) versus patients FISH negative (P=0.048). In wt-EGFR tumors, the SSS was associated with improved PFS (median PFS 3.61 months in high SSS versus 1.84 months in low SSS, P=0.026) but not with 8-week DCR. Increased expression of fibroblast growth factor-1, NF-kB and hypoxia pathways were identified potential drivers of sorafenib resistance.
Sorafenib demonstrates clinical activity in NSCLC, especially with wt-EGFR. SSS was associated with improved PFS. These data identify subgroups that may derive clinical benefit from sorafenib and merit investigation in future trials. NCT00411671.
PMCID: PMC3905243  PMID: 24166906
multikinase inhibitor; non–small cell lung cancer; sorafenib; biomarkers; targeted treatment
2.  MiRNA-210 modulates a nickel-induced cellular energy metabolism shift by repressing the iron–sulfur cluster assembly proteins ISCU1/2 in Neuro-2a cells 
He, M | Lu, Y | Xu, S | Mao, L | Zhang, L | Duan, W | Liu, C | Pi, H | Zhang, Y | Zhong, M | Yu, Z | Zhou, Z
Cell Death & Disease  2014;5(2):e1090-.
The cellular energy metabolism shift, characterized by the inhibition of oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) and enhancement of glycolysis, is involved in nickel-induced neurotoxicity. MicroRNA-210 (miR-210) is regulated by hypoxia-inducible transcription factor-1α (HIF-1α) under hypoxic conditions and controls mitochondrial energy metabolism by repressing the iron–sulfur cluster assembly protein (ISCU1/2). ISCU1/2 facilitates the assembly of iron–sulfur clusters (ISCs), the prosthetic groups that are critical for mitochondrial oxidation-reduction reactions. This study aimed to investigate whether miR-210 modulates alterations in energy metabolism after nickel exposure through suppressing ISCU1/2 and inactivating ISCs-containing metabolic enzymes. We determined that NiCl2 exposure leads to a significant accumulation of HIF-1α, rather than HIF-1β, in Neuro-2a cells. The miR-210 overexpression and ISCU1/2 downregulation was observed in a dose- and time-dependent manner. The gain-of-function and loss-of-dysfunction assays revealed that miR-210 mediated the ISCU1/2 suppression, energy metabolism alterations, and ISC-containing metabolic enzyme inactivation after nickel exposure. In addition, the impact of miR-210 on ISC-containing metabolic enzymes was independent from cellular iron regulation. Overall, these data suggest that repression of miR-210 on ISCU1/2 may contribute to HIF-1α-triggered alterations in energy metabolism after nickel exposure. A better understanding of how nickel impacts cellular energy metabolism may facilitate the elucidation of the mechanisms by which nickel affects the human health.
PMCID: PMC3944272  PMID: 24577088
nickel; energy metabolism shift; miR-210; ISCU1/2; glycolysis
3.  Oscillation of Clock and Clock Controlled Genes Induced by Serum Shock in Human Breast Epithelial and Breast Cancer Cells: Regulation by Melatonin 
This study investigates differences in expression of clock and clock-controlled genes (CCGs) between human breast epithelial and breast cancer cells and breast tumor xenografts in circadian intact rats and examines if the pineal hormone melatonin influences clock gene and CCG expression. Oscillation of clock gene expression was not observed under standard growth conditions in vitro, however, serum shock (50% horse serum for 2 h) induced oscillation of clock gene and CCG expression in MCF-10A cells, which was repressed or disrupted in MCF-7 cells. Melatonin administration following serum shock differentially suppressed or induced clock gene (Bmal1 and Per2) and CCG expression in MCF10A and MCF-7 cells. These studies demonstrate the lack of rhythmic expression of clock genes and CCGs of cells in vitro and that transplantation of breast cancer cells as xenografts into circadian competent hosts re-establishes a circadian rhythm in the peripheral clock genes of tumor cells.
PMCID: PMC3448497  PMID: 23012497
melatonin; clock genes; circadian; serum shock; breast cancer
4.  Periodic 48 h feed withdrawal improves glucose tolerance in growing pigs by enhancing adipogenesis and lipogenesis 
Adipocyte numbers and peroxisome proliferators activated receptorγ (PPARγ) expression of retroperitoneal tissue increased while area under the curve (AUC) during the glucose tolerance test (GTT) was reduced in rats subjected to certain feed withdrawal (FW) regimens. Thus, using pigs as the experimental model, the hypothesis that FW regimens influence glucose tolerance by influencing fat cell function was evaluated with the objective of determining the effect of a single (FWx1; at age of 19 wk for 48 h) or periodic, multiple (FWx4; 24 h FW at 7 and 11 wk of age and 48 h FW at 15 and 19 wk of age) FW on AUC of glucose and insulin during the GTT relative to pigs that did not experience FW (Control).
Growth, body composition, adipocyte numbers, PPARγ expression, lipogenic potential as glucose uptake into fat of adipocytes of varying diameter in omental (OM) and subcutaneous (SQ) fat as affected by FW regimens were determined in pigs initiated into the study at 5 wk of age and fed the same diet, ad libitum.
Blood glucose concentrations for prior to and 120 min post glucose meal tended to be lower (p = 0.105 and 0.097, respectively) in pigs in FW treatments. In OM fat; cell numbers, glucose Universal14C [U14C] incorporation into fat and rate of incorporation per 104 cells was greatest for cells with diameters of 90-119 μm. Pigs undergoing FWx4 tended to have greater (p = 0.0685; by 191%) number of adipocytes, increased (p = 0.0234) glucose U14C incorporation into adipocytes and greater (p = 0.0872) rate of glucose uptake into cells of 119-150 μm diameter than of cells from control or FWx1 pigs. Subcutaneous adipocyte numbers in 22-60 and 61-90 μm diameter ranges from pigs in FWx1 tended to be greater (p = 0.08 and 0.06, respectively) than for those in FWx4 treatment, yet PPARγ expression and total cell number were not affected by treatment.
Results suggest that FW regimens influence fat cell function or lipogenesis rather than number, affecting glucose metabolism and may have implications in drug-free control of metabolic syndrome symptoms.
PMCID: PMC3292934  PMID: 22321818
Adipocyte diameter; area under the curve; glucose tolerance; glucose incorporation into fat; pigs; feed withdrawal
5.  Loss of surface N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor proteins in mouse cortical neurones during anaesthesia induced by chloral hydrate in vivo 
BJA: British Journal of Anaesthesia  2009;102(4):515-522.
Anaesthetics may target ionotropic glutamate receptors in brain cells to produce their biological actions. Membrane-bound ionotropic glutamate receptors undergo dynamic trafficking between the surface membrane and intracellular organelles. Their subcellular distribution is subject to modulation by changing synaptic inputs and determines the efficacy and strength of excitatory synapses. It has not been explored whether anaesthesia has any impact on surface glutamate receptor expression. In this study, the effect of general anaesthesia on expression of N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors in the surface and intracellular pools of cortical neurones was investigated in vivo.
General anaesthesia was induced by intraperitoneal injection of chloral hydrate in adult male mice. Surface protein cross-linking assays were performed to detect changes in distribution of NMDA receptor subunits (NR1, NR2A, and NR2B) in the surface and intracellular compartments of cerebral cortical neurones.
Chloral hydrate did not alter the total amounts of NR1, NR2A, and NR2B proteins in cortical neurones. However, the drug reduced NR1 proteins in the surface pool of these neurones, and induced a proportional increase in NR1 in the intracellular pool. Similar redistribution of NR2B subunits was observed between the two distinct pools. The changes in NR1 and NR2B were rapid and remained throughout the duration of anaesthesia. NR2A proteins were not altered in the surface or intracellular pool in response to chloral hydrate.
These data demonstrate that subcellular expression of NR1 and NR2B in cortical neurones is sensitive to anaesthesia. Chloral hydrate reduces surface-expressed NMDA receptors (specifically NR2B-containing NMDA receptors) in these neurones in vivo.
PMCID: PMC2724878  PMID: 19224925
anaesthetics; cerebral cortex; glutamate receptor; NR1; NR2A; NR2B
6.  Incidence and risk factors for urethral and anal gonorrhoea and chlamydia in a cohort of HIV‐negative homosexual men: the Health in Men Study 
Sexually Transmitted Infections  2006;83(2):113-119.
Early detection and treatment of bacterial sexually transmitted infections has been advocated as an HIV prevention strategy.
To inform screening guidelines, the incidence and risk factors for urethral and anal gonorrhoea and chlamydia were studied in a prospective cohort of community‐based HIV negative homosexual men in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
All participants were offered annual screening for gonorrhoea and chlamydia (study‐visit diagnoses) on urine and anal swabs using nucleic acid amplification. Participants also reported diagnoses of gonorrhoea and chlamydia made elsewhere between interviews (interval diagnoses). All diagnoses were summed to create a combined incidence rate, and detailed data on specific sexual practices with casual and regular partners were collected.
Among 1427 men enrolled, the combined incidence rates were 3.49 and 2.96 per 100 person‐years for urethral and anal gonorrhoea, respectively; and 7.43 and 4.98 per 100 person‐years for urethral and anal chlamydia, respectively. Urethral infections were associated with unprotected anal intercourse (UAI) with HIV‐positive partners (hazard ratio (HR) = 2.58, 95% CI 1.10 to 6.05 for urethral gonorrhoea) and with frequent insertive oral sex (p for trend 0.007 for urethral chlamydia). Anal infections were associated with receptive UAI (p for trend 0.001 for both anal gonorrhoea and chlamydia) and other receptive anal sexual practices. Stratified analyses showed the independence of the associations of insertive oral sex with urethral infections and of non‐intercourse receptive anal practices with anal infections.
Incident gonorrhoea and chlamydia were common. Risk behaviours for both urethral and anal infections were not restricted to UAI. Screening that includes tests for anal and urethral infections should be considered for all sexually active homosexual men, not just for those who report UAI.
PMCID: PMC2598603  PMID: 17005541
7.  Effect of conjugated linoleic acids from beef or industrial hydrogenation on growth and adipose tissue characteristics of rats 
The conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) content of beef can be increased by supplementing appropriate beef cattle diets with vegetable oil or oil seed. Yet the effect of consumption of such beef on adipose tissue characteristics is unclear, thus the study was conducted to compare adipose tissue responses of rats to diets containing beef from steers either not provided or provided the oil supplements to alter CLA composition of the fat in muscle.
Effects of feeding synthetic (industrial hydrogenation) CLA or CLA from beef on growth and adipose tissue responses of weanling, male, Wistar rats (n = 56; 14 per treatment diet) were investigated in a completely randomized design experiment. Diets were: control (CON) diet containing casein and soybean oil, synthetic CLA (SCLA) diet; where 1.69% synthetic CLA replaced soybean oil, two beef-diets; CONM and CLAM, containing freeze dried beef from steers either not fed or fed 14% sunflower seeds to increase CLA content of beef. Diets were isonitrogenous (20% protein) and isocaloric. Rat weights and ad libitum intakes were recorded every 2 wk. After 9 wk, rats were fasted for 24 h, blood sampled by heart puncture, sacrificed, tissue and organs were harvested and weights recorded. The adipose tissue responses with regard to cellularity and fatty acid compositions of retroperitoneal and inguinal adipose tissue were determined.
Body weights and gains were comparable, but organ weights as percent of body weight were greater for rats fed SCLA than CONM. Fasting blood glucose concentration was lower (p < 0.01) in rats fed SCLA than those fed CONM or CLAM. Retroperitoneal and inguinal fat weights, as percent of body weight were greater (p < 0.01) in rats fed CONM or CLAM than those fed CON or SCLA diets. Adipocyte numbers were least in retroperitoneal tissue of rats fed SCLA, while inguinal tissue cell density and total number were lower (p = 0.02) in rats fed CLAM (7.26 × 107 cells/g and 8.03 × 108 cells) than those fed CONM (28.88 × 107 cells/g and 32.05 × 108 cells, respectively).
Study suggests that dietary CLA either as synthetic or high CLA-beef may alter adipose tissue characteristics by decreasing the number of adipocytes and by decreasing the size of the tissue.
PMCID: PMC2676290  PMID: 19386120
8.  An unusual cause of pancreatitis 
Gut  2006;55(2):164.
PMCID: PMC1856522  PMID: 16407382
pancreatitis; intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm; cholangiopancreatography
9.  Enhanced myocardial relaxation in vivo in transgenic mice overexpressing the beta2-adrenergic receptor is associated with reduced phospholamban protein. 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1996;97(7):1618-1623.
To assess the effect of targeted myocardial beta-adrenergic receptor (AR) stimulation on relaxation and phospholamban regulation, we studied the physiological and biochemical alterations associated with overexpression of the human beta2-AR gene in transgenic mice. These mice have an approximately 200-fold increase in beta-AR density and a 2-fold increase in basal adenylyl cyclase activity relative to negative littermate controls. Mice were catheterized with a high fidelity micromanometer and hemodynamic recordings were obtained in vivo. Overexpression of the beta2-AR altered parameters of relaxation. At baseline, LV dP/dt(min) and the time constant of LV pressure isovolumic decay (Tau) in the transgenic mice were significantly shorter compared with controls, indicating markedly enhanced myocardial relaxation. Isoproterenol stimulation resulted in shortening of relaxation velocity in control mice but not in the transgenic mice, indicating maximal relaxation in these animals. Immunoblotting analysis revealed a selective decrease in the amount of phospholamban protein, without a significant change in the content for either sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca2+ ATPase or calsequestrin, in the transgenic hearts compared with controls. This study indicates that myocardial relaxation is both markedly enhanced and maximal in these mice and that conditions associated with chronic beta-AR stimulation can result in a selective reduction of phospholamban protein.
PMCID: PMC507225  PMID: 8601626

Results 1-9 (9)