The X-linked Foxp3 is a member of the forkhead/winged helix transcription factor family. Germ-line mutations cause lethal autoimmune diseases in males. Serendipitously, we observed that Foxp3sf/+ heterozygous mice developed cancer at a high rate. The majority of the cancers were mammary carcinomas in which the wild-type Foxp3 allele was inactivated and ErbB2 was over-expressed. Foxp3 bound and repressed the ErbB2 promoter. Deletion, functionally significant somatic mutations and down-regulation of the FOXP3 gene were commonly found in human breast cancer samples and correlated significantly with HER-2 over-expression, regardless of the status of HER-2 amplification. In toto, the data demonstrate that FOXP3 is an X-linked breast cancer suppressor gene and an important regulator of the HER-2/ErbB2 oncogene.
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by deficits in social communication, absence or delay in language development, and stereotyped or repetitive behaviors. Genetic studies show that neurexin-neuroligin (NRXN-NLGN) pathway genes contribute susceptibility to ASD, which include cell adhesion molecules NLGN3, NLGN4 and scaffolding proteins SHANK2 and SHANK3. Neuroligin proteins play an important role in synaptic function and trans-synaptic signaling by interacting with presynaptic neurexins. Shank proteins are scaffolding molecules of excitatory synapses, which function as central organizers of the postsynaptic density. Sequence level mutations and structural variations in these genes have been identified in ASD cases, while few studies were performed in Chinese population. In this study, we examined the copy numbers of four genes NLGN4, NLGN3, SHANK2, and SHANK3 in 285 ASD cases using multiplex fluorescence competitive polymerase chain reaction (PCR). We also screened the regulatory region including the promoter region and 5′/3′ untranslated regions (UTR) and the entire coding region of NLGN4 in a cohort of 285 ASD patients and 384 controls by direct sequencing of genomic DNA using the Sanger method. DNA copy number calculation in four genes showed no deletion or duplication in our cases. No missense mutations in NLGN4 were identified in our cohort. Association analysis of 6 common SNPs in NLGN4 did not find significant difference between ASD cases and controls. These findings showed that these genes may not be major disease genes in Chinese ASD cases.
Since the KCNB1 encoding Kv2.1 channel accounts for the majority of Kv currents modulating insulin secretion by pancreatic islet beta-cells, we postulated that KCNB1 is a plausible candidate gene for genetic variation contributing to the variable compensatory secretory function of beta-cells in type-2 diabetes (T2D). We conducted two studies, a case-control study and a cross-section study, to investigate the association of common single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in KCNB1 with T2D and its linking traits. In the case-control study, we first examined the association of 20 tag SNPs of KCNB1 with T2D in a population with 226 T2D patients and non-diabetic subjects (screening study). We then identified the association in an enlarged population of 412 T2D patients and non-diabetic subjects (replication study). In the cross-sectional study, we investigated the linkage between the candidate SNP rs1051295 and T2D by comparing beta-cell function and insulin sensitivity among rs1051295 genotypes in a general population of 1051 subjects at fasting and after glucose loading (oral glucose tolerance tests, OGTT) in 84 fasting glucose impaired subjects, and several T2D-related traits. We found that among the 19 available tag SNPs, only the KCNB1 rs1051295 was associated with T2D (P = 0.027), with the rs1051295 TT genotype associated with an increased risk of T2D compared with genotypes CC (P = 0.009). At fasting, rs1051295 genotype TT was associated with a 9.8% reduction in insulin sensitivity compared to CC (P = 0.008); along with increased plasma triglycerides (TG) levels (TT/CC: P = 0.046) and increased waist/hip (W/H) ratio (TT/CC: P = 0.013; TT/TC: P = 0.002). OGTT confirmed that genotype TT exhibited reduced insulin sensitivity by 16.3% (P = 0.030) compared with genotype TC+CC in a fasting glucose impaired population. The KCNB1 rs1051295 genotype TT in the Chinese Han population is associated with decreased insulin sensitivity and increased plasma TG and W/H ratio, which together contribute to an increased risk for T2D.
The incidence of measles in China from 1991 to 2008 was reviewed, and the nucleotide sequences from 1507 measles viruses (MeV) isolated during 1993 to 2008 were phylogenetically analyzed. The results showed that measles epidemics peaked approximately every 3 to 5 years with the range of measles cases detected between 56,850 and 140,048 per year. The Chinese MeV strains represented three genotypes; 1501 H1, 1 H2 and 5 A. Genotype H1 was the predominant genotype throughout China continuously circulating for at least 16 years. Genotype H1 sequences could be divided into two distinct clusters, H1a and H1b. A 4.2% average nucleotide divergence was found between the H1a and H1b clusters, and the nucleotide sequence and predicted amino acid homologies of H1a viruses were 92.3%–100% and 84.7%–100%, H1b were 97.1%–100% and 95.3%–100%, respectively. Viruses from both clusters were distributed throughout China with no apparent geographic restriction and multiple co-circulating lineages were present in many provinces. Cluster H1a and H1b viruses were co-circulating during 1993 to 2005, while no H1b viruses were detected after 2005 and the transmission of that cluster has presumably been interrupted. Analysis of the nucleotide and predicted amino acid changes in the N proteins of H1a and H1b viruses showed no evidence of selective pressure. This study investigated the genotype and cluster distribution of MeV in China over a 16-year period to establish a genetic baseline before MeV elimination in Western Pacific Region (WPR). Continuous and extensive MeV surveillance and the ability to quickly identify imported cases of measles will become more critical as measles elimination goals are achieved in China in the near future. This is the first report that a single endemic genotype of measles virus has been found to be continuously circulating in one country for at least 16 years.
Three-dimensional topological insulators are characterized by insulating bulk state and metallic surface state involving relativistic Dirac fermions which are responsible for exotic quantum phenomena and potential applications in spintronics and quantum computations. It is essential to understand how the Dirac fermions interact with other electrons, phonons and disorders. Here we report super-high resolution angle-resolved photoemission studies on the Dirac fermion dynamics in the prototypical Bi2(Te,Se)3 topological insulators. We have directly revealed signatures of the electron-phonon coupling and found that the electron-disorder interaction dominates the scattering process. The Dirac fermion dynamics in Bi2(Te3−xSex) topological insulators can be tuned by varying the composition, x, or by controlling the charge carriers. Our findings provide crucial information in understanding and engineering the electron dynamics of the Dirac fermions for fundamental studies and potential applications.
In order to explore the mechanism of delayed and uneven germination in sharp tooth oak (Quercus aliena var. acuteserrata) (STO), mechanical scarification techniques were used to study STO root and shoot germination and growth. The techniques used were: removing cup scar (RS), removing the pericarp (RP), and cutting off 1/2 (HC) and 2/3 (TC) cotyledons. Germination percentage and root and shoot length for Chinese cabbage (Beassica pekinensis) seeds (CCS) were also investigated for CCS cultivated in a Sanyo growth cabinet watered by distilled water and 80% methanol extracts from the acorn embryo, cotyledon and pericarp with concentrations of 1.0 g, 0.8 g, 0.6 g and 0.4 g dry acorn weight per ml methanol. The results showed that the majority of roots and shoots from acorns with RP and HC treatment emerged two weeks earlier, more simultaneously, and their total emergences were more than 46% and 28% higher, respectively. TC accelerated root and shoot emergence time and root length, but root and shoot germination rate and shoot height had no significant difference from the control. Positive consequences were not observed on all indices of RS treatment. The germination rates of CCS watered by 1.0 g·ml−1 methanol extracts from the embryo and cotyledon were significantly lower than those from the pericarp, and all concentrations resulted in decreased growth of root and shoot. Methanol extracts from pericarp significantly reduced root length of CCS, but presented little response in germination percentage and shoot length. The inhibitory effect was gradually increased with the increasing concentration of the methanol extract. We conclude that both the mechanical restriction of the pericarp and the presence of germination inhibitors in the embryo, cotyledon and pericarp are the causes for delayed and asynchronous germination of STO acorns.
To investigate the imaging manifestations of Pneumocystis Jiroveci Pneumonitis (PCP) in AIDS patients, and the correlation between imaging features, CD4+ lymphocyte count, and plasma HIV viral load.
Materials and methods
A total of consecutive 50 AIDS patients with PCP were reviewed retrospectively. Chest CT manifestations, CD4+ lymphocyte count, and plasma HIV viral load were analyzed to investigate their correlation.
PCP chest CT manifestations included ground-glass opacities dominated in 28 cases (28/50, 56%), lung cysts dominated in 10 cases (10/50, 20%), consolidation dominated in 6 cases (6/50, 12%), interstitial lesion dominated in 3 cases (3/50, 6%), and mixed lesions in 3 cases (3/50, 6%). In these 50 patients, CD4+ lymphocyte count ranged from 2 to 373 cells/µL. Plasma HIV viral load ranged from 500 to 5.28×107 copies/mL. CD4+ lymphocyte count in ground-glass opacities dominated patients was higher than that of lung cyst dominated patients (P<0.05). Plasma virus load of lung cysts dominated PCP patients was higher than that of consolidation dominated patients (P<0.05).
The typical chest imaging features of PCP in AIDS patients included lung ground-glass opacities and lung cysts. The chest imaging features were correlated with CD4+ T lymphocyte count and plasma HIV viral load.
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS); Pneumocystis Jiroveci Pneumonitis; Tomography; X-ray computed; CD4+ lymphocyte counts; Virus load
Heightened surveillance of acute febrile illness in China since 2009 has led to the identification of a severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) with an unknown cause. Infection with Anaplasma phagocytophilum has been suggested as a cause, but the pathogen has not been detected in most patients on laboratory testing.
We obtained blood samples from patients with the case definition of SFTS in six provinces in China. The blood samples were used to isolate the causal pathogen by inoculation of cell culture and for detection of viral RNA on polymerase-chain-reaction assay. The pathogen was characterized on electron microscopy and nucleic acid sequencing. We used enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, indirect immunofluorescence assay, and neutralization testing to analyze the level of virus-specific antibody in patients’ serum samples.
We isolated a novel virus, designated SFTS bunyavirus, from patients who presented with fever, thrombocytopenia, leukocytopenia, and multiorgan dysfunction. RNA sequence analysis revealed that the virus was a newly identified member of the genus phlebovirus in the Bunyaviridae family. Electron-microscopical examination revealed virions with the morphologic characteristics of a bunyavirus. The presence of the virus was confirmed in 171 patients with SFTS from six provinces by detection of viral RNA, specific antibodies to the virus in blood, or both. Serologic assays showed a virus-specific immune response in all 35 pairs of serum samples collected from patients during the acute and convalescent phases of the illness.
A novel phlebovirus was identified in patients with a life-threatening illness associated with fever and thrombocytopenia in China. (Funded by the China Mega-Project for Infectious Diseases and others.)
Flos carthami is a traditional Chinese herbal medicine. Clinically, the Flos carthami Injection has been used concomitantly with other Western drugs and may be used concomitantly with β-blockers, such as metoprolol, to treat cerebrovascular and coronary heart diseases, in China. Metoprolol is a CYP2D6 substrate and is predominantly metabolized by this isozyme. However, we do not know whether there is an effect of Flos carthami on CYP2D6 and the consequences of such an effect. Concern is raised regarding the possible herb-drug interaction. In this report, the effects of Flos carthami on the activity of CYP2D6 in vivo and in vitro and on the pharmacokinetics of metoprolol, in rats, are investigated. To assess the inhibitory potency of Flos carthami, the concentration associated with 50% inhibition (IC50) of dextromethorphan metabolism was determined based on the concentration-inhibition curves. The inhibitory effect of Flos carthami on CYP2D6 was also compared with cimetidine in vitro. Flos carthami could significantly inhibit CYP2D6 in rats both in vitro and in vivo (P < .05) and could slow down the metabolic rate of metoprolol as suggested by prolonged t1/2 (67.45%), by increased Cmax (74.51%) and AUC0−∞ (76.89%). These results suggest that CYP2D6 is a risk factor when Flos carthami is administered concomitantly with metoprolol or other CYP2D6 substrates.
Red raspberry possesses potent antioxidant capacity and antiproliferative activity against cancer in vitro.
The objective of this study was to determine the protective effects of raspberry 80% acetone extract in a rat hepatic lesions model induced by diethylnitrosamine (DEN). Rats were treated with the red raspberry extract (0.75, 1.5 or 3.0 g/kg of body weight) by gavage starting 2 h after DEN administration and continuing for 20 weeks.
A dose-dependent inhibition by red raspberry extract of DEN-induced hepatic nodule formation which stands for hepatic lesions was observed. Corresponding hepatic nodule incidence rates were 45.0, 40.0, 25.0 and 5.0% in positive control, low, middle and high groups, respectively (P < 0.01 or 0.05). Gross findings, histopathological and ultrastructural evaluations of hepatic lesion were performed on 9, 8, 5 and 1 hepatic nodule in positive control, low, middle and high doses of groups, respectively, identified in rats from the respective groups of 20. A decreasing trend of proportions of hepatocellular carcinoma masses accompanied the increasing doses of red raspberry extract.
These findings demonstrate that the potent capacity of red raspberry diet could not only suppress DEN-induced hepatic lesions in rats, but also reduce the definite diagnostic features of neoplasm.
Colorectal cancer (CRC) is often diagnosed at a late stage with concomitant poor prognosis. The hypersensitive analytical technique of proteomics can detect molecular changes before the tumor is palpable. The surface-enhanced laser desorption/ionization-time of flight-mass spectra (SELDI-TOF-MS) is a newly-developed technique of evaluating protein separation in recent years. The protein chips have established the expression of tumor protein in the serum specimens and become the newly discovered markers for tumor diagnosis. The objective of this study was to find new markers of the diagnosis among groups of CRC, colorectal benign diseases (CBD) and healthy controls. The assay of SELDI-TOF-MS with analytical technique of protein-chip bioinformatics was used to detect the expression of protein mass peaks in the sera of patients or controls. One hundred serum samples, including 52 cases of colorectal cancer, 27 cases of colorectal benign disease, and 21 cases of healthy controls, were examined by SELDI-TOF-MS with WCX2 protein-chips.
The diagnostic models (I, II and III) were setup by analyzed the data and sieved markers using Ciphergen - Protein-Chip-Software 5.1. These models were combined with 3 protein mass peaks to discriminate CRC, CBD, and healthy controls. The accuracy, the sensitivity and the particularity of cross verification of these models are all highly over 80%.
The SELDI-TOF-MS is a useful tool to help diagnose colorectal cancer, especially during the early stage. However, identification of the significantly differentiated proteins needs further study.
Hypoxia is a common microenvironment in solid tumors and is correlated with tumor progression by regulating cancer cell survival. Recent studies suggest that activation of double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase-like endoplasmic reticulum-related kinase (PERK) and phosphorylation of α subunit of eIF2 (eIF2α) confer cell adaptation to hypoxic stress. However, eIF2α is still phosphorylated at a lowered level in PERK knockout cells under hypoxic conditions. The mechanism for eIF2α kinase(s) (eIF2AK)-increased cell survival is not clear. In this report, we provide evidence that another eIF2AK, the amino acid starvation-dependent general control of amino acid biosynthesis kinase (GCN2), is also involved in hypoxia-induced eIF2α phosphorylation. We demonstrate that both GCN2 and PERK mediate the cell adaptation to hypoxic stress. High levels of eIF2α phosphorylation lead to G1 arrest and protect cells from hypoxia-induced apoptosis. Reduced phosphorylation of eIF2α by knocking out either PERK or GCN2 suppresses hypoxia-induced G1 arrest and promotes apoptosis in accompany with activation of p53 signal cascade. However, totally abolishing phosphorylation of eIF2α inhibits G1 arrest without promoting apoptosis. On the basis of our results, we propose that the levels of eIF2α phosphorylation serve as a “switch” in regulation of G1 arrest or apoptosis under hypoxic conditions.
Glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK-3β) represses cell cycle progression by directly phosphorylating cyclin D1 and indirectly regulating cyclin D1 transcription by inhibiting Wnt signaling. Recently, we reported that the Epm2a-encoded laforin is a GSK-3β phosphatase and a tumor suppressor. The cellular mechanism for its tumor suppression remains unknown. Using ex vivo thymocytes and primary embryonic fibroblasts from Epm2a−/− mice, we show here a general function of laforin in the cell cycle regulation and repression of cyclin D1 expression. Moreover, targeted mutation of Epm2a increased the phosphorylation of Ser9 on GSK-3β while having no effect on the phosphorylation of Ser21 on GSK-3α. In the GSK-3β+/+ but not the GSK-3β−/− cells, Epm2a small interfering RNA significantly enhanced cell growth. Consistent with an increased level of cyclin D1, the phosphorylation of retinoblastoma protein (Rb) and the levels of Rb-E2F-regulated genes cyclin A, cyclin E, MCM3, and PCNA are also elevated. Inhibitors of GSK-3β selectively increased the cell growth of Epm2a+/+ but not of Epm2a−/− cells. Taken together, our data demonstrate that laforin is a selective phosphatase for GSK-3β and regulates cell cycle progression by GSK-3β-dependent mechanisms. These data provide a cellular basis for the tumor suppression activity of laforin.
S-phase kinase-associated protein 2 (SKP2) is a component of the E3 ubiquitin ligase SKP1-Cul1-Fbox complex. Overexpression of SKP2 results in cell cycle dysregulation and carcinogenesis; however, the genetic lesions that cause this upregulation are poorly understood. We recently demonstrated that forkhead box P3 (FOXP3) is an X-linked breast cancer suppressor and an important repressor of the oncogene ERBB2/HER2. Since FOXP3 suppresses tumor growth regardless of whether the tumors overexpress ERBB2/HER2, additional FOXP3 targets may be involved in its tumor suppressor activity. Here, we show that mammary carcinomas from mice heterozygous for a Foxp3 mutation exhibited increased Skp2 expression. Ectopic expression of FOXP3 in mouse mammary cancer cells repressed SKP2 expression with a corresponding increase in p27 and polyploidy. Conversely, siRNA silencing of the FOXP3 gene in human mammary epithelial cells increased SKP2 expression. We also show that Foxp3 directly interacted with and repressed the Skp2 promoter. Moreover, the analysis of over 200 primary breast cancer samples revealed an inverse correlation between FOXP3 and SKP2 levels. Finally, we demonstrated that downregulation of SKP2 was critical for FOXP3-mediated growth inhibition in breast cancer cells that do not overexpress ERBB2/HER2. Our data provide genetic, biochemical, and functional evidence that FOXP3 is a novel transcriptional repressor for the oncogene SKP2.
Microglial cells, which are immunocompetent cells, are involved in all diseases of the central nervous system. During their activation in various diseases, a variety of soluble factors are released. In the present study, the correlation between cytokine levels and microglial cell migration in the course of retinal degeneration of Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) rats was evaluated. MFG-E8 and CD11b were used to confirm the microglial cells. In the retina of RCS rats, the mRNA expression of seven genes (MFG-E8 and its integrins αυ and ß5, CD11b and the cytokines TNF-α, IL-1ß, and MCP-1) formed almost similar bimodal peak distributions, which were centred at P7 and P45 to P60. In contrast, in rdy rats, which comprised the control group, a unimodal peak distribution centred at P14 was observed. The gene expression accompanied the activation and migration of microglial cells from the inner to the outer layer of the retina during the process of degeneration. Principal component analysis and discriminant function analysis revealed that the expression of these seven genes, especially TNF-α and CD11b, positively correlated with retinal degeneration and microglial activity during retinal degeneration in RCS rats, but not in the control rats. Furthermore, linear regression analysis demonstrated a significant correlation between the expression of these genes and the activation of microglial cells in the dystrophic retina. Our findings suggest that the suppression of microglial cells and the blockade of their cytotoxic effects may constitute a novel therapeutic strategy for treating photoreceptor death in various retinal disorders.
As avian influenza A(H5N1) viruses continue to circulate in Asia and Africa, global concerns of an imminent pandemic persist. Recent experimental studies suggest that efficient transmission between humans of current H5N1 viruses only requires a few genetic changes. An essential step is alteration of the virus hemagglutinin from preferential binding to avian receptors for the recognition of human receptors present in the upper airway. We have identified receptor-binding changes which emerged during H5N1 infection of humans, due to single amino acid substitutions, Ala134Val and Ile151Phe, in the hemagglutinin. Detailed biological, receptor-binding, and structural analyses revealed reduced binding of the mutated viruses to avian-like receptors, but without commensurate increased binding to the human-like receptors investigated, possibly reflecting a receptor-binding phenotype intermediate in adaptation to more human-like characteristics. These observations emphasize that evolution in nature of avian H5N1 viruses to efficient binding of human receptors is a complex multistep process.
•Changes in receptor binding of HA during H5N1 human infection were identified.•Single A134V and L151F substitutions caused reduced affinity for avian receptors.•Glycan array analyses were used to identify changes in receptor binding specificity.•Structural basis for altered receptor binding was examined by X-ray crystallography.
H5N1 influenza infection; Pyrosequencing; Hemagglutinin; Receptor specificity; Hemagglutination assays; Receptor binding; Carbohydrate microarray; Biolayer interferometry; Synthetic sialylglycopolymers; Hemagglutinin X-ray crystal structure
Although draft genome sequences of two of the major human schistosomes, Schistosoma japonicum and S. mansoni are available, the structures and characteristics of most genes and the influence of exogenous genes on the metabolism of schistosomes remain uncharacterized. Furthermore, which functional genomics approaches will be tractable for schistosomes are not yet apparent. Here, the vesicular stomatitis virus glycoprotein (VSVG)-pseudotyped pantropic retroviral vector pBABE-puro was modified to incorporate the human telomerase reverse transcriptase gene (hTERT) as a reporter, under the control of the retroviral long terminal repeat (LTR). Pseudotyped virions were employed to transduce S. japonicum to investigate the utility of retrovirus-mediated transgenesis of S. japonicum and the activity of human telomerase reverse transcriptase as a reporter transgene in schistosomes. Schistosomules perfused from experimentally infected rabbits were cultured for six days after exposure to the virions after which genomic DNAs from virus-exposed and control worms were extracted. Analysis of RNA from transduced parasites and immunohistochemistry of thin parasite sections revealed expression of hTERT in the transduced worms. Expression of hTERT was also confirmed by immunoblot analysis. These findings indicated that S. japonicum could be effectively transduced by VSVG pseudotyped retrovirus carrying the hTERT gene. Given the potential of hTERT to aid in derivation of immortalized cells, these findings suggest that this pantropic retroviral approach can be employed to transduce cells from specific tissues and organs of schistosomes to investigate the influence of transgene hTERT on growth and proliferation of schistosome cells.
Schistosoma japonicum; glycoprotein of vesicular stomatitis virus (VSVG); pantropic retrovirus; murine leukemia virus; transgene; telomerase
Safe and effective vaccines offer the best intervention for disease control. One strategy to maximize vaccine immunogenicity without compromising safety is to rationally design molecular complexes that mimic the natural structure of immunogenic microbes, but without the disease-causing components. Here we use highly programmable DNA nanostructures as platforms to assemble a model antigen and CpG adjuvants together into nanoscale complexes with precise control of the valency and spatial arrangement of each element. Our results from immunized mice show that compared to a mixture of antigen and CpG molecules, the assembled antigen-adjuvant-DNA complexes induce strong and long-lasting antibody responses against the antigen without stimulating a reaction to the DNA nanostructure itself. This result demonstrates the potential of DNA nanostructures to serve as general platforms for the rational design and construction of a variety of vaccines.
DNA nanostructure; synthetic vaccine; mouse immunization
mTOR is a highly conserved serine/threonine protein kinase that serves as a central regulator of cell growth, survival and autophagy. Deregulation of the PI3K/Akt/mTOR signaling pathway occurs commonly in cancer and numerous inhibitors targeting the ATP-binding site of these kinases are currently undergoing clinical evaluation. Here we report the characterization of Torin2, a second generation ATP-competitive inhibitor that is potent and selective for mTOR with a superior pharmacokinetic profile to previous inhibitors. Torin2 inhibited mTORC1-dependent T389 phosphorylation on S6K (RPS6KB1) with an EC50 of 250 pM with approximately 800-fold selectivity for cellular mTOR versus PI3K. Torin2 also exhibited potent biochemical and cellular activity against PIKK family kinases including ATM (EC50 28 nM), ATR (EC50 35 nM) and DNA-PK (EC50 118 nM) (PRKDC), the inhibition of which sensitized cells to Irradiation. Similar to the earlier generation compound Torin1 and in contrast to other reported mTOR inhibitors, Torin2 inhibited mTOR kinase and mTORC1 signaling activities in a sustained manner suggestive of a slow dissociation from the kinase. Cancer cell treatment with Torin2 for 24 hours resulted in a prolonged block in negative feedback and consequent T308 phosphorylation on Akt. These effects were associated with strong growth inhibition in vitro. Single agent treatment with Torin2 in vivo did not yield significant efficacy against KRAS-driven lung tumors, but the combination of Torin2 with MEK inhibitor AZD6244 yielded a significant growth inhibition. Taken together, our findings establish Torin2 as a strong candidate for clinical evaluation in a broad number of oncological settings where mTOR signaling has a pathogenic role.
mTOR; ATM; ATR; lung cancer; kinase inhibitors
Programmed cell death 4 (PDCD4), a novel tumor suppressor, inhibits cell proliferation, migration and invasion as well as promotes cell apoptosis in tumors. However, the molecular mechanism of its tumor-suppressive function remains largely unknown in tumors including nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC). In this study, downregulated PDCD4 expression was significantly associated with the status of NPC progression and poor prognosis. PDCD4 markedly suppressed the ability of cell proliferation and cell survival by modulating C-MYC-controlled cell cycle and BCL-2-mediated mitochondrion apoptosis resistance signals, and oncogenic transcription factor C-JUN in NPC. Furthermore, miR-184, a tumor-suppressive miRNA modulated by PDCD4 directly targeting BCL2 and C-MYC, participated in PDCD4-mediated suppression of cell proliferation and survival in NPC. Further, we found that PDCD4 decreased the binding of C-Jun to the AP-1 element on the miR-184 promoter regions by PI3K/AKT/JNK/C-Jun pathway and stimulated miR-184 expression. In clinical fresh specimens, reduced PDCD4 mRNA level was positively correlated with miR-184 expression in NPC. Our studies are the first to demonstrate that PDCD4 as tumor suppressor regulated miR-184-mediated direct targeting of BCL2 and C-MYC via PI3K/AKT and JNK/C-Jun pathway attenuating cell proliferation and survival in NPC.
PDCD4; NPC; miR-184; BCL2; C-MYC
Presented here is a slotted-quad-beam structure sensor for the measurement of friction in micro bearings. Stress concentration slots are incorporated into a conventional quad-beam structure to improve the sensitivity of force measurements. The performance comparison between the quad-beam structure sensor and the slotted-quad-beam structure sensor are performed by theoretical modeling and finite element (FE) analysis. A hollow stainless steel probe is attached to the mesa of the sensor chip by a tailor-made organic glass fixture. Concerning the overload protection of the fragile beams, a glass wafer is bonded onto the bottom of sensor chip to limit the displacement of the mesa. The calibration of the packaged device is experimentally performed by a tri-dimensional positioning stage, a precision piezoelectric ceramic and an electronic analytical balance, which indicates its favorable sensitivity and overload protection. To verify the potential of the proposed sensor being applied in micro friction measurement, a measurement platform is established. The output of the sensor reflects the friction of bearing resulting from dry friction and solid lubrication. The results accord with the theoretical modeling and demonstrate that the sensor has the potential application in measuring the micro friction force under stable stage in MEMS machines.
micro-force sensor; stress concentration slots; friction measurement
Postnatal and adult human and monkey fibroblasts were infected with Sendai virus containing the Yamanaka factors for 24 hr, then they were cultured in a chemically defined medium containing leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF), transforming growth factor (TGF)-β inhibitor SB431542, and glycogen synthase kinase (GSK)-3β inhibitor CHIR99021 at 39°C for inactivation of the virus. Induced neural progenitor (iNP) colonies appeared as early as day 13 and can be expanded for >20 passages. Under the same defined condition, no induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) colonies formed at either 37°Cor 39°C. The iNPs predominantly express hindbrain genes and differentiate into hindbrain neurons, and when caudalized, they produced an enriched population of spinal motor neurons. Following transplantation into the forebrain, the iNP-derived cells retained the hindbrain identity. The ability to generate defined, integration-free iNPs from adult primate fibroblasts under a defined condition with predictable fate choices will facilitate disease modeling and therapeutic development.
The Polycomb group protein Bmi1 is a transcriptional silencer of the Ink4a-Arf locus, which encodes the cell cycle regulator p16Ink4a and the tumor suppressor p19Arf. Bmi1 plays a key role in oncogenesis and stem cell self-renewal. We report that phosphorylation of human Bmi1 at Ser316 by Akt impaired its function by triggering its dissociation from the Ink4a-Arf locus, which resulted in decreased ubiquitylation of histone H2A and the inability of Bmi1 to promote cellular proliferation and tumor growth. Moreover, Akt-mediated phosphorylation of Bmi1 also inhibited its ability to promote self-renewal of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells. Our study provides a mechanism for the increased abundance of p16Ink4a and p19Arf seen in cancer cells with an activated phosphoinositide 3-kinase to Akt signaling pathway and identifies crosstalk between phosphorylation events and chromatin structure.
Salvia miltiorrhiza Bunge is one of the most renowned traditional medicinal plants in China. Phenolic acids that are derived from the rosmarinic acid pathway, such as rosmarinic acid and salvianolic acid B, are important bioactive components in S. miltiorrhiza. Accumulations of these compounds have been reported to be induced by various elicitors, while little is known about transcription factors that function in their biosynthetic pathways. We cloned a subgroup 4 R2R3 MYB transcription factor gene (SmMYB39) from S. miltiorrhiza and characterized its roles through overexpression and RNAi-mediated silencing. As the results showed, the content of 4-coumaric acid, rosmarinic acid, salvianolic acid B, salvianolic acid A and total phenolics was dramatically decreased in SmMYB39-overexpressing S. miltiorrhiza lines while being enhanced by folds in SmMYB39-RNAi lines. Quantitative real-time PCR and enzyme activities analyses showed that SmMYB39 negatively regulated transcripts and enzyme activities of 4-hydroxylase (C4H) and tyrosine aminotransferase (TAT). These data suggest that SmMYB39 is involved in regulation of rosmarinic acid pathway and acts as a repressor through suppressing transcripts of key enzyme genes.
Background and Aims
Interferon-gamma induced protein 10 (IP-10) was suggested to be involved in liver injury in viral hepatitis. This study aimed to investigate the impact of the single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) G-201A (rs1439490) in IP-10 gene on disease progression of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection.
The -201 SNP in IP-10 promoter was genotyped from 577 patients with different illness categories and 275 health controls; In vitro IP-10 promoter activity was compared between haplotype GG and AA homozygotes using luciferase reporter system in HepG2 cells. In vivo expression of IP-10 was compared between patients with -201 AA genotype and GG genotype.
The detected frequency of G-201A SNP was 17.8%, 25.3%, 26.6%, and 13.8% for patients with acute hepatitis B (AHB), patients with mild chronic hepatitis B (CHB-M), patients with severe chronic hepatitis B (CHB-S), and health controls, respectively. In vitro IP-10 promoter-driven luciferase activity in pGL3-Enhancer-201A transfected HepG2 cells was 1.43-fold higher than that in pGL3-Enhancer-201G transfected HepG2 cells (P<0.01). In vivo IP-10 transcriptional expression of peripheral blood mononuclear cells was 1.38-fold higher in patients with -201 AA genotype than in patients with -201 GG genotype (P<0.01).
G-201A in promoter region of IP-10 gene was associated with liver disease progression in patients with HBV infection through up-regulating IP-10 expression.