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Int. J. Mol. Sci., Volume 18, Issue 2 (February 2017)

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Cover Story Five missense point mutations occurring near the nucleotide-binding pocket are associated with [...] Read more.
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Editorial

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Open AccessEditorial Pulses, Healthy, and Sustainable Food Sources for Feeding the Planet
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 255; doi:10.3390/ijms18020255
Received: 4 January 2017 / Revised: 22 January 2017 / Accepted: 23 January 2017 / Published: 25 January 2017
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(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pulses)
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Research

Jump to: Editorial, Review, Other

Open AccessArticle Polyphenolic Extract of Euphorbia supina Attenuates Manganese-Induced Neurotoxicity by Enhancing Antioxidant Activity through Regulation of ER Stress and ER Stress-Mediated Apoptosis
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 300; doi:10.3390/ijms18020300
Received: 10 November 2016 / Accepted: 24 January 2017 / Published: 30 January 2017
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (10299 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Manganese (Mn) is an important trace element present in human body, which acts as an enzyme co-factor or activator in various metabolic reactions. While essential in trace amounts, excess levels of Mn in human brain can produce neurotoxicity, including idiopathic Parkinson’s disease (PD)-like
[...] Read more.
Manganese (Mn) is an important trace element present in human body, which acts as an enzyme co-factor or activator in various metabolic reactions. While essential in trace amounts, excess levels of Mn in human brain can produce neurotoxicity, including idiopathic Parkinson’s disease (PD)-like extrapyramidal manganism symptoms. This study aimed to investigate the protective role of polyphenolic extract of Euphorbia supina (PPEES) on Mn-induced neurotoxicity and the underlying mechanism in human neuroblastoma SKNMC cells and Sprague-Dawley (SD) male rat brain. PPEES possessed significant amount of total phenolic and flavonoid contents. PPEES also showed significant antioxidant activity in 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical scavenging and reducing power capacity (RPC) assays. Our results showed that Mn treatment significantly reduced cell viability and increased lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) level, which was attenuated by PPEES pretreatment at 100 and 200 µg/mL. Additionally, PPEES pretreatment markedly attenuated Mn-induced antioxidant status alteration by resolving the ROS, MDA and GSH levels and SOD and CAT activities. PPEES pretreatment also significantly attenuated Mn-induced mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm) and apoptosis. Meanwhile, PPEES pretreatment significantly reversed the Mn-induced alteration in the GRP78, GADD34, XBP-1, CHOP, Bcl-2, Bax and caspase-3 activities. Furthermore, administration of PPEES (100 and 200 mg/kg) to Mn exposed rats showed improvement of histopathological alteration in comparison to Mn-treated rats. Moreover, administration of PPEES to Mn exposed rats showed significant reduction of 8-OHdG and Bax immunoreactivity. The results suggest that PPEES treatment reduces Mn-induced oxidative stress and neuronal cell loss in SKNMC cells and in the rat brain. Therefore, PPEES may be considered as potential treat-ment in Mn-intoxicated patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Activity of Natural Secondary Metabolite Products)
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Open AccessArticle In Vitro Characterization of the Two-Stage Non-Classical Reassembly Pathway of S-Layers
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 400; doi:10.3390/ijms18020400
Received: 29 November 2016 / Revised: 17 January 2017 / Accepted: 31 January 2017 / Published: 14 February 2017
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Abstract
The recombinant bacterial surface layer (S-layer) protein rSbpA of Lysinibacillus sphaericus CCM 2177 is an ideal model system to study non-classical nucleation and growth of protein crystals at surfaces since the recrystallization process may be separated into two distinct steps: (i) adsorption of
[...] Read more.
The recombinant bacterial surface layer (S-layer) protein rSbpA of Lysinibacillus sphaericus CCM 2177 is an ideal model system to study non-classical nucleation and growth of protein crystals at surfaces since the recrystallization process may be separated into two distinct steps: (i) adsorption of S-layer protein monomers on silicon surfaces is completed within 5 min and the amount of bound S-layer protein sufficient for the subsequent formation of a closed crystalline monolayer; (ii) the recrystallization process is triggered—after washing away the unbound S-layer protein—by the addition of a CaCl2 containing buffer solution, and completed after approximately 2 h. The entire self-assembly process including the formation of amorphous clusters, the subsequent transformation into crystalline monomolecular arrays, and finally crystal growth into extended lattices was investigated by quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation (QCM-D) and atomic force microscopy (AFM). Moreover, contact angle measurements showed that the surface properties of S-layers change from hydrophilic to hydrophobic as the crystallization proceeds. This two-step approach is new in basic and application driven S-layer research and, most likely, will have advantages for functionalizing surfaces (e.g., by spray-coating) with tailor-made biological sensing layers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Recognition)
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Open AccessArticle Comparisons of Transcriptional Profiles of Gut Genes between Cry1Ab-Resistant and Susceptible Strains of Ostrinia nubilalis Revealed Genes Possibly Related to the Adaptation of Resistant Larvae to Transgenic Cry1Ab Corn
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 301; doi:10.3390/ijms18020301
Received: 25 September 2016 / Revised: 6 January 2017 / Accepted: 20 January 2017 / Published: 30 January 2017
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Abstract
A microarray developed on the basis of 2895 unique transcripts from larval gut was used to compare gut gene expression profiles between a laboratory-selected Cry1Ab-resistant (R) strain and its isoline susceptible (S) strain of the European corn borer (Ostrinia nubilalis) after
[...] Read more.
A microarray developed on the basis of 2895 unique transcripts from larval gut was used to compare gut gene expression profiles between a laboratory-selected Cry1Ab-resistant (R) strain and its isoline susceptible (S) strain of the European corn borer (Ostrinia nubilalis) after the larvae were fed the leaves of transgenic corn (MON810) expressing Cry1Ab or its non-transgenic isoline for 6 h. We revealed 398 gut genes differentially expressed (i.e., either up- or down-regulated genes with expression ratio ≥2.0) in S-strain, but only 264 gut genes differentially expressed in R-strain after being fed transgenic corn leaves. Although the percentages of down-regulated genes among the total number of differentially expressed genes (50% in S-strain and 45% in R-strain) were similar between the R- and S-strains, the expression ratios of down-regulated genes were much higher in S-strain than in R-strain. We revealed that 17 and 9 significantly up- or down-regulated gut genes from S and R-strain, respectively, including serine proteases and aminopeptidases. These genes may be associated with Cry1Ab toxicity by degradation, binding, and cellular defense. Overall, our study suggests enhanced adaptation of Cry1Ab-resistant larvae on transgenic Cry1Ab corn as revealed by lower number and lower ratios of differentially expressed genes in R-strain than in S-strain of O. nubilalis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessCommunication A Conjugate Based on Anti-HER2 Diaffibody and Auristatin E Targets HER2-Positive Cancer Cells
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 401; doi:10.3390/ijms18020401
Received: 14 December 2016 / Revised: 20 January 2017 / Accepted: 31 January 2017 / Published: 14 February 2017
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Abstract
Antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) have recently emerged as efficient and selective cancer treatment therapeutics. Currently, alternative forms of drug carriers that can replace monoclonal antibodies are under intensive investigation. Here, a cytotoxic conjugate of an anti-HER2 (Human Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor 2) diaffibody with
[...] Read more.
Antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) have recently emerged as efficient and selective cancer treatment therapeutics. Currently, alternative forms of drug carriers that can replace monoclonal antibodies are under intensive investigation. Here, a cytotoxic conjugate of an anti-HER2 (Human Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor 2) diaffibody with monomethyl-auristatin E (MMAE) is proposed as a potential anticancer therapeutic. The anti-HER2 diaffibody was based on the ZHER2:4 affibody amino acid sequence. The anti-HER2 diaffibody has been expressed as a His-tagged protein in E. coli and purified by Ni-nitrilotriacetyl (Ni-NTA) agarose chromatography. The molecule was properly folded, and the high affinity and specificity of its interaction with HER2 was confirmed by surface plasmon resonance (SPR) and flow cytometry, respectively. The (ZHER2:4)2DCS-MMAE conjugate was obtained by coupling the maleimide group linked with MMAE to cysteines, which were introduced in a drug conjugation sequence (DCS). Cytotoxicity of the conjugate was evaluated using the 3-(4,5-dimethyl-2-thiazolyl)-2,5-diphenyl-2-H-tetrazolium bromide MTT assay and the xCELLigence Real-Time Cell Analyzer. Our experiments demonstrated that the conjugate delivered auristatin E specifically to HER2-positive tumor cells, which finally led to their death. These results indicate that the cytotoxic diaffibody conjugate is a highly potent molecule for the treatment of various types of cancer overexpressing HER2 receptors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Recognition)
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Open AccessArticle An In Silico Identification of Common Putative Vaccine Candidates against Treponema pallidum: A Reverse Vaccinology and Subtractive Genomics Based Approach
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 402; doi:10.3390/ijms18020402
Received: 14 November 2016 / Revised: 22 January 2017 / Accepted: 27 January 2017 / Published: 14 February 2017
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Abstract
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are caused by a wide variety of bacteria, viruses, and parasites that are transmitted from one person to another primarily by vaginal, anal, or oral sexual contact. Syphilis is a serious disease caused by a sexually transmitted infection. Syphilis
[...] Read more.
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are caused by a wide variety of bacteria, viruses, and parasites that are transmitted from one person to another primarily by vaginal, anal, or oral sexual contact. Syphilis is a serious disease caused by a sexually transmitted infection. Syphilis is caused by the bacterium Treponema pallidum subspecies pallidum. Treponema pallidum (T. pallidum) is a motile, gram-negative spirochete, which can be transmitted both sexually and from mother to child, and can invade virtually any organ or structure in the human body. The current worldwide prevalence of syphilis emphasizes the need for continued preventive measures and strategies. Unfortunately, effective measures are limited. In this study, we focus on the identification of vaccine targets and putative drugs against syphilis disease using reverse vaccinology and subtractive genomics. We compared 13 strains of T. pallidum using T. pallidum Nichols as the reference genome. Using an in silicoapproach, four pathogenic islands were detected in the genome of T. pallidum Nichols. We identified 15 putative antigenic proteins and sixdrug targets through reverse vaccinology and subtractive genomics, respectively, which can be used as candidate therapeutic targets in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Reverse Vaccinology)
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Open AccessCommunication Antimicrobial and Hemolytic Studies of a Series of Polycations Bearing Quaternary Ammonium Moieties: Structural and Topological Effects
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 303; doi:10.3390/ijms18020303
Received: 6 December 2016 / Revised: 24 January 2017 / Accepted: 26 January 2017 / Published: 30 January 2017
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Abstract
A series of polycations bearing quaternary ammonium moieties have shown antimicrobial activity against the Gram-negative bacterium Escherichia coli. Different polymer topologies governed by a disubstituted aromatic core as well as different diamine-based linkers were found to influence the antimicrobial properties. Moreover, the hemolytic
[...] Read more.
A series of polycations bearing quaternary ammonium moieties have shown antimicrobial activity against the Gram-negative bacterium Escherichia coli. Different polymer topologies governed by a disubstituted aromatic core as well as different diamine-based linkers were found to influence the antimicrobial properties. Moreover, the hemolytic activity against human red blood cells was measured and demonstrated good biocompatibility and selectivity of these polycations for bacteria over mammalian cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial Polymers 2016)
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Open AccessArticle A Plant Proteinase Inhibitor from Enterolobium contortisiliquum Attenuates Pulmonary Mechanics, Inflammation and Remodeling Induced by Elastase in Mice
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 403; doi:10.3390/ijms18020403
Received: 1 December 2016 / Revised: 17 January 2017 / Accepted: 3 February 2017 / Published: 14 February 2017
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Abstract
Proteinase inhibitors have been associated with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities and may represent a potential therapeutic treatment for emphysema. Our aim was to evaluate the effects of a plant Kunitz proteinase inhibitor, Enterolobium contortisiliquum trypsin inhibitor (EcTI), on several aspects of experimental elastase-induced
[...] Read more.
Proteinase inhibitors have been associated with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities and may represent a potential therapeutic treatment for emphysema. Our aim was to evaluate the effects of a plant Kunitz proteinase inhibitor, Enterolobium contortisiliquum trypsin inhibitor (EcTI), on several aspects of experimental elastase-induced pulmonary inflammation in mice. C57/Bl6 mice were intratracheally administered elastase (ELA) or saline (SAL) and were treated intraperitoneally with EcTI (ELA-EcTI, SAL-EcTI) on days 1, 14 and 21. On day 28, pulmonary mechanics, exhaled nitric oxide (ENO) and number leucocytes in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) were evaluated. Subsequently, lung immunohistochemical staining was submitted to morphometry. EcTI treatment reduced responses of the mechanical respiratory system, number of cells in the BALF, and reduced tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9), matrix metalloproteinase-12 (MMP-12), tissue inhibitor of matrix metalloproteinase (TIMP-1), endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS)-positive cells and volume proportion of isoprostane, collagen and elastic fibers in the airways and alveolar walls compared with the ELA group. EcTI treatment reduced elastase induced pulmonary inflammation, remodeling, oxidative stress and mechanical alterations, suggesting that this inhibitor may be a potential therapeutic tool for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Botany)
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Open AccessArticle Jun Dimerization Protein 2 Activates Mc2r Transcriptional Activity: Role of Phosphorylation and SUMOylation
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 304; doi:10.3390/ijms18020304
Received: 15 December 2016 / Revised: 16 January 2017 / Accepted: 26 January 2017 / Published: 31 January 2017
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Abstract
Jun dimerization protein 2 (JDP2), a basic leucine zipper transcription factor, is involved in numerous biological and cellular processes such as cancer development and regulation, cell-cycle regulation, skeletal muscle and osteoclast differentiation, progesterone receptor signaling, and antibacterial immunity. Though JDP2 is widely expressed
[...] Read more.
Jun dimerization protein 2 (JDP2), a basic leucine zipper transcription factor, is involved in numerous biological and cellular processes such as cancer development and regulation, cell-cycle regulation, skeletal muscle and osteoclast differentiation, progesterone receptor signaling, and antibacterial immunity. Though JDP2 is widely expressed in mammalian tissues, its function in gonads and adrenals (such as regulation of steroidogenesis and adrenal development) is largely unknown. Herein, we find that JDP2 mRNA and proteins are expressed in mouse adrenal gland tissues. Moreover, overexpression of JDP2 in Y1 mouse adrenocortical cancer cells increases the level of melanocortin 2 receptor (MC2R) protein. Notably, Mc2r promoter activity is activated by JDP2 in a dose-dependent manner. Next, by mapping the Mc2r promoter, we show that cAMP response elements (between −1320 and −720-bp) are mainly required for Mc2r activation by JDP2 and demonstrate that −830-bp is the major JDP2 binding site by real-time chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) analysis. Mutations of cAMP response elements on Mc2r promoter disrupts JDP2 effect. Furthermore, we demonstrate that removal of phosphorylation of JDP2 results in attenuated transcriptional activity of Mc2r. Finally, we show that JDP2 is a candidate for SUMOylation and SUMOylation affects JDP2-mediated Mc2r transcriptional activity. Taken together, JDP2 acts as a novel transcriptional activator of the mouse Mc2r gene, suggesting that JDP2 may have physiological functions as a novel player in MC2R-mediated steroidogenesis as well as cell signaling in adrenal glands. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessArticle Anti-Fibrotic Effect of Losartan, an Angiotensin II Receptor Blocker, Is Mediated through Inhibition of ER Stress via Up-Regulation of SIRT1, Followed by Induction of HO-1 and Thioredoxin
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 305; doi:10.3390/ijms18020305
Received: 8 December 2016 / Accepted: 23 January 2017 / Published: 31 January 2017
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Abstract
Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress is increasingly identified as modulator of fibrosis. Losartan, an angiotensin II receptor blocker, has been widely used as the first choice of treatment in chronic renal diseases. We postulated that anti-fibrotic effect of losartan is mediated through inhibition of
[...] Read more.
Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress is increasingly identified as modulator of fibrosis. Losartan, an angiotensin II receptor blocker, has been widely used as the first choice of treatment in chronic renal diseases. We postulated that anti-fibrotic effect of losartan is mediated through inhibition of ER stress via SIRT1 (silent mating type information regulation 2 homolog 1) hemeoxygenase-1 (HO-1)/thioredoxin pathway. Renal tubular cells, tunicamycin (TM)-induced ER stress, and unilateral ureteral obstruction (UUO) mouse model were used. Expression of ER stress was assessed by Western blot analysis and immunohistochemical stain. ER stress was induced by chemical ER stress inducer, tunicamycin, and non-chemical inducers such as TGF-β, angiotensin II, high glucose, and albumin. Losartan suppressed the TM-induced ER stress, as shown by inhibition of TM-induced expression of GRP78 (glucose related protein 78) and p-eIF2α (phosphospecific-eukaryotic translation initiation factor-2α), through up-regulation of SIRT1 via HO-1 and thioredoxin. Losartan also suppressed the ER stress by non-chemical inducers. In both animal models, losartan reduced the tubular expression of GRP78, which were abolished by pretreatment with sirtinol (SIRT1 inhibitor). Sirtinol also blocked the inhibitory effect of losartan on the UUO-induced renal fibrosis. These findings provide new insights into renoprotective effects of losartan and suggest that SIRT1, HO-1, and thioredoxin may be potential pharmacological targets in kidney diseases under excessive ER stress condition. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessArticle Cisplatin, Oxaliplatin, and Kiteplatin Subcellular Effects Compared in a Plant Model
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 306; doi:10.3390/ijms18020306
Received: 16 December 2016 / Accepted: 25 January 2017 / Published: 31 January 2017
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Abstract
The immediate visual comparison of platinum chemotherapeutics’ effects in eukaryotic cells using accessible plant models of transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana is reported. The leading anticancer drug cisplatin, a third generation drug used for colon cancer, oxaliplatin and kiteplatin, promising Pt-based anticancer drugs effective against
[...] Read more.
The immediate visual comparison of platinum chemotherapeutics’ effects in eukaryotic cells using accessible plant models of transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana is reported. The leading anticancer drug cisplatin, a third generation drug used for colon cancer, oxaliplatin and kiteplatin, promising Pt-based anticancer drugs effective against resistant lines, were administered to transgenic A. thaliana plants monitoring their effects on cells from different tissues. The transgenic plants’ cell cytoskeletons were labelled by the green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged microtubule-protein TUA6 (TUA6-GFP), while the vacuolar organization was evidenced by two soluble chimerical GFPs (GFPChi and AleuGFP) and one transmembrane GFP-tagged tonoplast intrinsic protein 1-1 (TIP1.1-GFP). The three drugs showed easily recognizable effects on plant subcellular organization, thereby providing evidence for a differentiated drug targeting. Genetically modified A. thaliana are confirmed as a possible rapid and low-cost screening tool for better understanding the mechanism of action of human anticancer drugs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Botany)
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Open AccessArticle Effects of Postnatal Enriched Environment in a Model of Parkinson’s Disease in Adult Rats
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 406; doi:10.3390/ijms18020406
Received: 22 December 2016 / Revised: 1 February 2017 / Accepted: 6 February 2017 / Published: 14 February 2017
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Abstract
Environmental enrichment is a widespread neuroprotective strategy during development and also in the mature nervous system. Several research groups have described that enriched environment in adult rats has an impact on the progression of Parkinson’s disease (PD). The aim of our present study
[...] Read more.
Environmental enrichment is a widespread neuroprotective strategy during development and also in the mature nervous system. Several research groups have described that enriched environment in adult rats has an impact on the progression of Parkinson’s disease (PD). The aim of our present study was to examine the effects of early, postnatal environmental enrichment after 6-hydroxydopamine-induced (6-OHDA) lesion of the substantia nigra in adulthood. Newborn Wistar rats were divided into control and enriched groups according to their environmental conditions. For environmental enrichment, during the first five postnatal weeks animals were placed in larger cages and exposed to intensive complex stimuli. Dopaminergic cell loss, and hypokinetic and asymmetrical signs were evaluated after inducing PD with unilateral injections of 6-OHDA in three-month-old animals. Treatment with 6-OHDA led to a significant cell loss in the substantia nigra of control animals, however, postnatal enriched circumstances could rescue the dopaminergic cells. Although there was no significant difference in the percentage of surviving cells between 6-OHDA-treated control and enriched groups, the slightly less dopaminergic cell loss in the enriched group compared to control animals resulted in less severe hypokinesia. Our investigation is the first to provide evidence for the neuroprotective effect of postnatal enriched environment in PD later in life. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neuroprotective Strategies 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Gypenoside XVII Prevents Atherosclerosis by Attenuating Endothelial Apoptosis and Oxidative Stress: Insight into the ERα-Mediated PI3K/Akt Pathway
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 77; doi:10.3390/ijms18020077
Received: 4 November 2016 / Revised: 17 December 2016 / Accepted: 22 December 2016 / Published: 9 February 2017
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Abstract
Phytoestrogens are estrogen-like compounds of plant origin. The pharmacological activities of phytoestrogens are predominantly due to their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and lipid-lowering properties, which are mediated via the estrogen receptors (ERs): estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) and estrogen receptor beta (ERβ) and possibly G protein-coupled
[...] Read more.
Phytoestrogens are estrogen-like compounds of plant origin. The pharmacological activities of phytoestrogens are predominantly due to their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and lipid-lowering properties, which are mediated via the estrogen receptors (ERs): estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) and estrogen receptor beta (ERβ) and possibly G protein-coupled estrogen receptor 1 (GPER). Gypenoside XVII (GP-17) is a phytoestrogen that is widely used to prevent cardiovascular disease, including atherosclerosis, but the mechanism underlying these therapeutic effects is largely unclear. This study aimed to assess the anti-atherogenic effects of GP-17 and its mechanisms in vivo and in vitro. In vivo experiments showed that GP-17 significantly decreased blood lipid levels, increased the expression of antioxidant enzymes and decreased atherosclerotic lesion size in ApoE−/− mice. In vitro experiments showed that GP-17 significantly prevented oxidized low-density lipoprotein (Ox-LDL)-induced endothelial injury. The underlying protective mechanisms of GP-17 were mediated by restoring the normal redox state, up-regulating of the ratio of Bcl-2 to Bax and inhibiting the expression of cleaved caspase-3 in Ox-LDL-induced human umbilical vein endothelial cell (HUVEC) injury. Notably, we found that GP-17 treatment predominantly up-regulated the expression of ERα but not ERβ. However, similar to estrogen, the protective effect of GP-17 could be blocked by the ER antagonist ICI182780 and the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) antagonist LY294002. Taken together, these results suggest that, due to its antioxidant properties, GP-17 could alleviate atherosclerosis via the ERα-mediated PI3K/Akt pathway. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessArticle Evaluation of EphA2 and EphB4 as Targets for Image-Guided Colorectal Cancer Surgery
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 307; doi:10.3390/ijms18020307
Received: 23 November 2016 / Revised: 30 December 2016 / Accepted: 21 January 2017 / Published: 3 February 2017
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Abstract
Targeted image-guided oncologic surgery (IGOS) relies on the recognition of cell surface-associated proteins, which should be abundantly present on tumor cells but preferably absent on cells in surrounding healthy tissue. The transmembrane receptor tyrosine kinase EphA2, a member of the A class of
[...] Read more.
Targeted image-guided oncologic surgery (IGOS) relies on the recognition of cell surface-associated proteins, which should be abundantly present on tumor cells but preferably absent on cells in surrounding healthy tissue. The transmembrane receptor tyrosine kinase EphA2, a member of the A class of the Eph receptor family, has been reported to be highly overexpressed in several tumor types including breast, lung, brain, prostate, and colon cancer and is considered amongst the most promising cell membrane-associated tumor antigens by the NIH. Another member of the Eph receptor family belonging to the B class, EphB4, has also been found to be upregulated in multiple cancer types. In this study, EphA2 and EphB4 are evaluated as targets for IGOS of colorectal cancer by immunohistochemistry (IHC) using a tissue microarray (TMA) consisting of 168 pairs of tumor and normal tissue. The IHC sections were scored for staining intensity and percentage of cells stained. The results show a significantly enhanced staining intensity and more widespread distribution in tumor tissue compared with adjacent normal tissue for EphA2 as well as EphB4. Based on its more consistently higher score in colorectal tumor tissue compared to normal tissue, EphB4 appears to be a promising candidate for IGOS of colorectal cancer. In vitro experiments using antibodies on human colon cancer cells confirmed the possibility of EphB4 as target for imaging. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Evaluation of Not-Activated and Activated PRP in Hair Loss Treatment: Role of Growth Factor and Cytokine Concentrations Obtained by Different Collection Systems
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 408; doi:10.3390/ijms18020408
Received: 16 January 2017 / Revised: 7 February 2017 / Accepted: 8 February 2017 / Published: 14 February 2017
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Abstract
Platelet rich plasma (PRP) was tested as a potential therapy for androgenetic alopecia (AGA) through two different clinical protocols in which one population (18 participants) received half-head treatment with autologous non-activated PRP (A-PRP) produced by CPunT Preparation System (Biomed Device, Modena, Italy) and
[...] Read more.
Platelet rich plasma (PRP) was tested as a potential therapy for androgenetic alopecia (AGA) through two different clinical protocols in which one population (18 participants) received half-head treatment with autologous non-activated PRP (A-PRP) produced by CPunT Preparation System (Biomed Device, Modena, Italy) and the other half-head with placebo, and a second separated population in which all participants (n = 6, 3 participants per group) received treatment with calcium-activated PRP (AA-PRP) produced from one of two different PRP collection devices (Regen Blood Cell Therapy or Arthrex Angel System). For the A-PRP study, three treatments were administered over 30-day intervals. Trichoscan analysis of patients, three months post-treatment, showed a clinical improvement in the number of hairs in the target area (36 ± 3 hairs) and in total hair density (65± 5 hair cm2), whereas negligible improvements in hair count (1.1± 1.4 hairs) and density (1.9 ± 10.2 hair cm2) were seen in the region of the scalp that received placebo. Microscopic evaluation conducted two weeks after treatment showed also an increase in epidermal thickness, Ki67+ keratinocytes, and in the number of follicles. The AA-PRP treatment groups received a singular set of injections, and six months after the treatments were administered, notable differences in clinical outcomes were obtained from the two PRP collection devices (+90 ± 6 hair cm2 versus -73 ± 30 hair cm2 hair densities, Regen versus Arthrex). Growth factor concentrations in AA-PRP prepared from the two collection devices did not differ significantly upon calcium activation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessArticle Comprehensive Analysis of Rice Laccase Gene (OsLAC) Family and Ectopic Expression of OsLAC10 Enhances Tolerance to Copper Stress in Arabidopsis
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 209; doi:10.3390/ijms18020209
Received: 4 November 2016 / Accepted: 13 January 2017 / Published: 30 January 2017
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Abstract
Laccases are encoded by a multigene family and widely distributed in plant genomes where they play roles oxidizing monolignols to produce higher-order lignin involved in plant development and stress responses. We identified 30 laccase genes (OsLACs) from rice, which can be
[...] Read more.
Laccases are encoded by a multigene family and widely distributed in plant genomes where they play roles oxidizing monolignols to produce higher-order lignin involved in plant development and stress responses. We identified 30 laccase genes (OsLACs) from rice, which can be divided into five subfamilies, mostly expressed during early development of the endosperm, growing roots, and stems. OsLACs can be induced by hormones, salt, drought, and heavy metals stresses. The expression level of OsLAC10 increased 1200-fold after treatment with 20 μM Cu for 12 h. The laccase activities of OsLAC10 were confirmed in an Escherichia coli expression system. Lignin accumulation increased in the roots of Arabidopsis over-expressing OsLAC10 (OsLAC10-OX) compared to wild-type controls. After growth on 1/2 Murashige and Skoog (MS) medium containing toxic levels of Cu for seven days, roots of the OsLAC10-OX lines were significantly longer than those of the wild type. Compared to control plants, the Cu concentration decreased significantly in roots of the OsLAC10-OX line under hydroponic conditions. These results provided insights into the evolutionary expansion and functional divergence of OsLAC family. In addition, OsLAC10 is likely involved in lignin biosynthesis, and reduces the uptake of Cu into roots required for Arabidopsis to develop tolerance to Cu. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Abiotic Stress and Gene Networks in Plants 2017)
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Open AccessArticle Arabidopsis RabF1 (ARA6) Is Involved in Salt Stress and Dark-Induced Senescence (DIS)
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 309; doi:10.3390/ijms18020309
Received: 7 December 2016 / Revised: 21 January 2017 / Accepted: 25 January 2017 / Published: 1 February 2017
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Abstract
Arabidopsis small GTPase RabF1 (ARA6) functions in endosomal vesicle transport and may play a crucial role in recycling and degradation of molecules, thus involved in stress responses. Here we have reported that complementary overexpression lines RabF1OE (overexpression), GTPase mutants RabF1Q93L (constitutively active) and
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Arabidopsis small GTPase RabF1 (ARA6) functions in endosomal vesicle transport and may play a crucial role in recycling and degradation of molecules, thus involved in stress responses. Here we have reported that complementary overexpression lines RabF1OE (overexpression), GTPase mutants RabF1Q93L (constitutively active) and RabF1S47N (dominant negative) lines show longer root growth than wild-type, rabF1 knockout and N-myristoylation deletion (Δ1−29, N-terminus) complementary overexpression mutant plants under salt induced stress, which indicates that N-myristoylation of RabF1 is indispensable for salt tolerance. Moreover, RabF1 is highly expressed during senescence and RabF1OE lines were more tolerant of dark-induced senescence (DIS) than wild-type and rabF1. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Unconventional Proteins and Membranes Traffic)
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Open AccessArticle The Cell Death Triggered by the Nuclear Localized RxLR Effector PITG_22798 from Phytophthora infestans Is Suppressed by the Effector AVR3b
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 409; doi:10.3390/ijms18020409
Received: 16 November 2016 / Revised: 3 February 2017 / Accepted: 6 February 2017 / Published: 14 February 2017
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Abstract
Phytopathogenic oomycetes, such as Phytophthora infestans, potentially secrete many RxLR effector proteins into plant cells to modulate plant immune responses and promote colonization. However, the molecular mechanisms by which these RxLR effectors suppress plant immune responses are largely unknown. Here we describe
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Phytopathogenic oomycetes, such as Phytophthora infestans, potentially secrete many RxLR effector proteins into plant cells to modulate plant immune responses and promote colonization. However, the molecular mechanisms by which these RxLR effectors suppress plant immune responses are largely unknown. Here we describe an RxLR effector PITG_22798 (Gene accession: XM_002998349) that was upregulated during early infection of potato by P. infestans. By employment of agroinfiltration, we observed that PITG_22798 triggers cell death in Nicotiana benthamiana. Confocal microscopic examination showed that PITG_22798-GFP (Green Fluorescent Protein) located in the host nucleus when expressed transiently in N. benthamiana leaves. A nuclear localization signal (NLS) domain of PITG_22798 is important for nuclear localization and cell death-inducing activity. Sequence alignment and transient expression showed that PITG_22798 from diverse P. infestans isolates are conserved, and transient expression of PITG_22798 enhances P. infestans colonization of N. benthamiana leaves, which suggests that PITG_22798 contributes to P. infestans infection. PITG_22798-triggered cell death is dependent on SGT1-mediated signaling and is suppressed by the P. infestans avirulence effector 3b (AVR3b). The present research provides a clue for further investigation of how P. infestans effector PITG_22798 associates with and modulates host immunity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Botany)
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Open AccessArticle Expression of Iron-Related Proteins Differentiate Non-Cancerous and Cancerous Breast Tumors
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 410; doi:10.3390/ijms18020410
Received: 19 December 2016 / Revised: 1 February 2017 / Accepted: 6 February 2017 / Published: 14 February 2017
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Abstract
We have previously reported hepcidin and ferritin increases in the plasma of breast cancer patients, but not in patients with benign breast disease. We hypothesized that these differences in systemic iron homeostasis may reflect alterations in different iron-related proteins also play a key
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We have previously reported hepcidin and ferritin increases in the plasma of breast cancer patients, but not in patients with benign breast disease. We hypothesized that these differences in systemic iron homeostasis may reflect alterations in different iron-related proteins also play a key biochemical and regulatory role in breast cancer. Thus, here we explored the expression of a bundle of molecules involved in both iron homeostasis and tumorigenesis in tissue samples. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) or reverse-phase protein array (RPPA), were used to measure the expression of 20 proteins linked to iron processes in 24 non-cancerous, and 56 cancerous, breast tumors. We found that cancerous tissues had higher level of hepcidin than benign lesions (p = 0.012). The univariate analysis of RPPA data highlighted the following seven proteins differentially expressed between non-cancerous and cancerous breast tissue: signal transducer and transcriptional activator 5 (STAT5), signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3), bone morphogenetic protein 6 (BMP6), cluster of differentiation 74 (CD74), transferrin receptor (TFRC), inhibin alpha (INHA), and STAT5_pY694. These findings were confirmed for STAT5, STAT3, BMP6, CD74 and INHA when adjusting for age. The multivariate statistical analysis indicated an iron-related 10-protein panel effective in separating non-cancerous from cancerous lesions including STAT5, STAT5_pY694, myeloid differentiation factor 88 (MYD88), CD74, iron exporter ferroportin (FPN), high mobility group box 1 (HMGB1), STAT3_pS727, TFRC, ferritin heavy chain (FTH), and ferritin light chain (FTL). Our results showed an association between some iron-related proteins and the type of tumor tissue, which may provide insight in strategies for using iron chelators to treat breast cancer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Precision Medicine—From Bench to Bedside)
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Open AccessArticle Enhancing the Biological Relevance of Machine Learning Classifiers for Reverse Vaccinology
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 312; doi:10.3390/ijms18020312
Received: 15 November 2016 / Accepted: 17 January 2017 / Published: 1 February 2017
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Abstract
Reverse vaccinology (RV) is a bioinformatics approach that can predict antigens with protective potential from the protein coding genomes of bacterial pathogens for subunit vaccine design. RV has become firmly established following the development of the BEXSERO® vaccine against Neisseria meningitidis serogroup B.
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Reverse vaccinology (RV) is a bioinformatics approach that can predict antigens with protective potential from the protein coding genomes of bacterial pathogens for subunit vaccine design. RV has become firmly established following the development of the BEXSERO® vaccine against Neisseria meningitidis serogroup B. RV studies have begun to incorporate machine learning (ML) techniques to distinguish bacterial protective antigens (BPAs) from non-BPAs. This research contributes significantly to the RV field by using permutation analysis to demonstrate that a signal for protective antigens can be curated from published data. Furthermore, the effects of the following on an ML approach to RV were also assessed: nested cross-validation, balancing selection of non-BPAs for subcellular localization, increasing the training data, and incorporating greater numbers of protein annotation tools for feature generation. These enhancements yielded a support vector machine (SVM) classifier that could discriminate BPAs (n = 200) from non-BPAs (n = 200) with an area under the curve (AUC) of 0.787. In addition, hierarchical clustering of BPAs revealed that intracellular BPAs clustered separately from extracellular BPAs. However, no immediate benefit was derived when training SVM classifiers on data sets exclusively containing intra- or extracellular BPAs. In conclusion, this work demonstrates that ML classifiers have great utility in RV approaches and will lead to new subunit vaccines in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Reverse Vaccinology)
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Open AccessArticle Bacterial-Derived Polymer Poly-y-Glutamic Acid (y-PGA)-Based Micro/Nanoparticles as a Delivery System for Antimicrobials and Other Biomedical Applications
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 313; doi:10.3390/ijms18020313
Received: 31 December 2016 / Accepted: 18 January 2017 / Published: 2 February 2017
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Abstract
In the past decade, poly-γ-glutamic acid (γ-PGA)-based micro/nanoparticles have garnered remarkable attention as antimicrobial agents and for drug delivery, owing to their controlled and sustained-release properties, low toxicity, as well as biocompatibility with tissue and cells. γ-PGA is a naturally occurring biopolymer produced
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In the past decade, poly-γ-glutamic acid (γ-PGA)-based micro/nanoparticles have garnered remarkable attention as antimicrobial agents and for drug delivery, owing to their controlled and sustained-release properties, low toxicity, as well as biocompatibility with tissue and cells. γ-PGA is a naturally occurring biopolymer produced by several gram-positive bacteria that, due to its biodegradable, non-toxic and non-immunogenic properties, has been used successfully in the medical, food and wastewater industries. Moreover, its carboxylic group on the side chains can offer an attachment point to conjugate antimicrobial and various therapeutic agents, or to chemically modify the solubility of the biopolymer. The unique characteristics of γ-PGA have a promising future for medical and pharmaceutical applications. In the present review, the structure, properties and micro/nanoparticle preparation methods of γ-PGA and its derivatives are covered. Also, we have highlighted the impact of micro/nanoencapsulation or immobilisation of antimicrobial agents and various disease-related drugs on biodegradable γ-PGA micro/nanoparticles. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial Polymers 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Preventive Effects of Pentoxifylline on the Development of Colonic Premalignant Lesions in Obese and Diabetic Mice
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 413; doi:10.3390/ijms18020413
Received: 28 December 2016 / Revised: 19 January 2017 / Accepted: 10 February 2017 / Published: 15 February 2017
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Abstract
Obesity and its related metabolic abnormalities, including enhanced oxidative stress and chronic inflammation, are closely related to colorectal tumorigenesis. Pentoxifylline (PTX), a methylxanthine derivative, has been reported to suppress the production of tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α and possess anti-inflammatory properties. The present study
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Obesity and its related metabolic abnormalities, including enhanced oxidative stress and chronic inflammation, are closely related to colorectal tumorigenesis. Pentoxifylline (PTX), a methylxanthine derivative, has been reported to suppress the production of tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α and possess anti-inflammatory properties. The present study investigated the effects of PTX on the development of carcinogen-induced colorectal premalignant lesions in obese and diabetic mice. Male C57BL/KsJ-db/db mice, which are severely obese and diabetic, were administered weekly subcutaneous injections of the colonic carcinogen azoxymethane (15 mg/kg body weight) for four weeks and then received drinking water containing 125 or 500 ppm PTX for eight weeks. At the time of sacrifice, PTX administration markedly suppressed the development of premalignant lesions in the colorectum. The levels of oxidative stress markers were significantly decreased in the PTX-treated group compared with those in the untreated control group. In PTX-administered mice, the mRNA expression levels of cyclooxygenase (COX)-2, interleukin (IL)-6, and TNF-α, and the number of proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA)-positive cells in the colonic mucosa, were significantly reduced. These observations suggest that PTX attenuated chronic inflammation and oxidative stress, and prevented the development of colonic tumorigenesis in an obesity-related colon cancer model. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Inflammation and Cancer)
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Open AccessArticle Embryological Results of Couples Undergoing ICSI-ET Treatments with Males Carrying the Single Nucleotide Polymorphism rs175080 of the MLH3 Gene
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 314; doi:10.3390/ijms18020314
Received: 22 October 2016 / Accepted: 26 January 2017 / Published: 2 February 2017
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Abstract
Human MLH3 (hMLH3) gene has been suggested to play a role in the DNA mismatch repair mechanism, while it may also be associated with abnormal spermatogenesis and subsequently male infertility. The aim of the present study was to investigate possible relationships between the
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Human MLH3 (hMLH3) gene has been suggested to play a role in the DNA mismatch repair mechanism, while it may also be associated with abnormal spermatogenesis and subsequently male infertility. The aim of the present study was to investigate possible relationships between the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs175080 in the MLH3 gene of males and the embryological results in couples undergoing intracytoplasmatic sperm injection-embryo transfer (ICSI-ET) treatments. A total of 132 men volunteered for the study and gave written informed consent. All couples were subjected to ICSI-ET treatments in the years 2010 to 2012. The couples were divided into three groups according to the genotype of their husbands: the wild type GG (n = 28), the heterozygotic type GA (n = 72) and the mutant type AA (n = 32). Significantly lower sperm concentration and progressive motility were observed in the AA group as compared to the other two groups (Concentration: 14.57 ± 4.9 mil/mL in AA, 38.3 ± 5.4 mil/mL in GA and 41.03 ± 6.8 mil/mL in GG, p < 0.05, mean ± standard error of the mean—SEM). However, significantly better embryological results (mean score of embryo quality–MSEQ) were found in the AA (8.12 ± 0.5) and the GA group (7.36 ± 0.4) as compared to the GG group (5.82 ± 0.7), (p < 0.05). Clinical pregnancy rate was significantly higher in the AA genotype group (43.8%) and the GA group (30.6%) than in the GG group (14.3%), (p < 0.05). Live birth rate was not different. It is suggested for the first time that the deteriorating effect of the mutant type on sperm characteristics does not impact on embryo development after fertilization in vitro. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Human Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms and Disease Diagnostics)
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Open AccessArticle Biofilm Formation and Immunomodulatory Activity of Proteus mirabilis Clinically Isolated Strains
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 414; doi:10.3390/ijms18020414
Received: 29 November 2016 / Revised: 7 February 2017 / Accepted: 8 February 2017 / Published: 15 February 2017
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Abstract
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) and catheter-associated UTIs (CAUTIs) are the principal hospital-acquired infections. Proteus mirabilis is characterized by several virulence factors able to promote adhesion and biofilm formation and ameliorate the colonization of urinary tract and the formation of crystalline biofilms on the
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Urinary tract infections (UTIs) and catheter-associated UTIs (CAUTIs) are the principal hospital-acquired infections. Proteus mirabilis is characterized by several virulence factors able to promote adhesion and biofilm formation and ameliorate the colonization of urinary tract and the formation of crystalline biofilms on the abiotic surface of the urinary catheters. Since, to date, the role of P. mirabilis in the etiopathogenesis of different types of urinary tract infections is not well established, in this study we sought to characterize two different clinically isolated strains of P. mirabilis (PM1 and PM2) with distinctive phenotypes and analyzed various virulence factors possibly implicated in the ability to induce UTIs and CAUTIs. In particular, we analyzed motility, biofilm formation both on abiotic and biotic surfaces of PM1 and PM2 and paralleled these parameters with the ability to induce an inflammatory response in an epithelial cell model. Results showed that PM1 displayed major motility and a capacity to form biofilm and was associated with an anti-inflammatory response of host cells. Conversely, PM2 exhibited lack motility and a had slower organization in biofilm but promoted an increase of proinflammatory cytokine expression in infected epithelial cells. Our study provides data useful to start uncovering the pathologic basis of P. mirabilis-associated urinary infections. The evidence of different virulence factors expressed by PM1 and PM2 highlights the possibility to use precise and personalized therapies targeting specific virulence pathways. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Host-Microbe Interaction)
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Open AccessArticle Valproate Attenuates Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress-Induced Apoptosis in SH-SY5Y Cells via the AKT/GSK3β Signaling Pathway
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 315; doi:10.3390/ijms18020315
Received: 27 September 2016 / Revised: 12 January 2017 / Accepted: 27 January 2017 / Published: 8 February 2017
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Abstract
Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress-induced apoptosis plays an important role in a range of neurological disorders, such as neurodegenerative diseases, spinal cord injury, and diabetic neuropathy. Valproate (VPA), a typical antiepileptic drug, is commonly used in the treatment of bipolar disorder and epilepsy. Recently,
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Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress-induced apoptosis plays an important role in a range of neurological disorders, such as neurodegenerative diseases, spinal cord injury, and diabetic neuropathy. Valproate (VPA), a typical antiepileptic drug, is commonly used in the treatment of bipolar disorder and epilepsy. Recently, VPA has been reported to exert neurotrophic effects and promote neurite outgrowth, but its molecular mechanism is still unclear. In the present study, we investigated whether VPA inhibited ER stress and promoted neuroprotection and neuronal restoration in SH-SY5Y cells and in primary rat cortical neurons, respectively, upon exposure to thapsigargin (TG). In SH-SY5Y cells, cell viability was detected by the 3-(4,5-dimethyl-2-thiazolyl)-2,5-diphenyl-2-H-tetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay, and the expression of ER stress-related apoptotic proteins such as glucose‑regulated protein (GRP78), C/EBP homologous protein (CHOP), and cleaved caspase-12/-3 were analyzed with Western blot analyses and immunofluorescence assays. To explore the pathway involved in VPA-induced cell proliferation, we also examined p-AKT, GSK3β, p-JNK and MMP-9. Moreover, to detect the effect of VPA in primary cortical neurons, immunofluorescence staining of β-III tubulin and Anti-NeuN was analyzed in primary cultured neurons exposed to TG. Our results demonstrated that VPA administration improved cell viability in cells exposed to TG. In addition, VPA increased the levels of GRP78 and p-AKT and decreased the levels of ATF6, XBP-1, GSK3β, p-JNK and MMP-9. Furthermore, the levels of the ER stress-induced apoptosis response proteins CHOP, cleaved caspase-12 and cleaved caspase-3 were inhibited by VPA treatment. Meanwhile, VPA administration also increased the ratio of Bcl-2/Bax. Moreover, VPA can maintain neurite outgrowth of primary cortical neurons. Collectively, the neurotrophic effect of VPA is related to the inhibition of ER stress-induced apoptosis in SH-SY5Y cells and the maintenance of neuronal growth. Collectively, our results suggested a new approach for the therapeutic function of VPA in neurological disorders and neuroprotection. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Programmed Cell Death and Apoptosis)
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Open AccessArticle Azacitidine for Front-Line Therapy of Patients with AML: Reproducible Efficacy Established by Direct Comparison of International Phase 3 Trial Data with Registry Data from the Austrian Azacitidine Registry of the AGMT Study Group
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 415; doi:10.3390/ijms18020415
Received: 8 December 2016 / Revised: 6 February 2017 / Accepted: 8 February 2017 / Published: 15 February 2017
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Abstract
We recently published a clinically-meaningful improvement in median overall survival (OS) for patients with acute myeloid leukaemia (AML), >30% bone marrow (BM) blasts and white blood cell (WBC) count ≤15 G/L, treated with front-line azacitidine versus conventional care regimens within a phase 3
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We recently published a clinically-meaningful improvement in median overall survival (OS) for patients with acute myeloid leukaemia (AML), >30% bone marrow (BM) blasts and white blood cell (WBC) count ≤15 G/L, treated with front-line azacitidine versus conventional care regimens within a phase 3 clinical trial (AZA-AML-001; NCT01074047; registered: February 2010). As results obtained in clinical trials are facing increased pressure to be confirmed by real-world data, we aimed to test whether data obtained in the AZA-AML-001 trial accurately represent observations made in routine clinical practice by analysing additional AML patients treated with azacitidine front-line within the Austrian Azacitidine Registry (AAR; NCT01595295; registered: May 2012) and directly comparing patient-level data of both cohorts. We assessed the efficacy of front-line azacitidine in a total of 407 patients with newly-diagnosed AML. Firstly, we compared data from AML patients with WBC ≤ 15 G/L and >30% BM blasts included within the AZA-AML-001 trial treated with azacitidine (“AML-001” cohort; n = 214) with AAR patients meeting the same inclusion criteria (“AAR (001-like)” cohort; n = 95). The current analysis thus represents a new sub-analysis of the AML-001 trial, which is directly compared with a new sub-analysis of the AAR. Baseline characteristics, azacitidine application, response rates and OS were comparable between all patient cohorts within the trial or registry setting. Median OS was 9.9 versus 10.8 months (p = 0.616) for “AML-001” versus “AAR (001-like)” cohorts, respectively. Secondly, we pooled data from both cohorts (n = 309) and assessed the outcome. Median OS of the pooled cohorts was 10.3 (95% confidence interval: 8.7, 12.6) months, and the one-year survival rate was 45.8%. Thirdly, we compared data from AAR patients meeting AZA-AML-001 trial inclusion criteria (n = 95) versus all AAR patients with World Health Organization (WHO)-defined AML (“AAR (WHO-AML)” cohort; n = 193). Within the registry population, median OS for AAR patients meeting trial inclusion criteria versus all WHO-AML patients was 10.8 versus 11.8 months (p = 0.599), respectively. We thus tested and confirmed the efficacy of azacitidine as a front-line agent in patients with AML, >30% BM blasts and WBC ≤ 15 G/L in a routine clinical practice setting. We further show that the efficacy of azacitidine does not appear to be limited to AML patients who meet stringent clinical trial inclusion criteria, but instead appears efficacious as front-line treatment in all patients with WHO-AML. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Biology and Treatment of Myeloid Leukaemias)
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Open AccessCommunication Erythroid Differentiation Regulator 1 as a Novel Biomarker for Hair Loss Disorders
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 316; doi:10.3390/ijms18020316
Received: 31 October 2016 / Revised: 24 January 2017 / Accepted: 27 January 2017 / Published: 3 February 2017
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Abstract
Erythroid differentiation regulator 1 (Erdr1) is known to be involved in the inflammatory process via regulating the immune system in many cutaneous disorders, such as psoriasis and rosacea. However, the role of Erdr1 in various hair loss disorders remains unclear. The aim of
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Erythroid differentiation regulator 1 (Erdr1) is known to be involved in the inflammatory process via regulating the immune system in many cutaneous disorders, such as psoriasis and rosacea. However, the role of Erdr1 in various hair loss disorders remains unclear. The aim of this study was to investigate the putative role of Erdr1 in alopecias. Skin samples from 21 patients with hair loss disorders and five control subjects were retrieved, in order to assess their expression levels of Erdr1. Results revealed that expression of Erdr1 was significantly downregulated in the epidermis and hair follicles of patients with hair loss disorders, when compared to that in the control group. In particular, the expression of Erdr1 was significantly decreased in patients with alopecia areata. We propose that Erdr1 downregulation might be involved in the pathogenesis of hair loss, and could be considered as a novel biomarker for hair loss disorders. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Inflammatory Skin Conditions)
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Open AccessArticle Extending Immunological Profiling in the Gilthead Sea Bream, Sparus aurata, by Enriched cDNA Library Analysis, Microarray Design and Initial Studies upon the Inflammatory Response to PAMPs
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 317; doi:10.3390/ijms18020317
Received: 17 May 2016 / Revised: 31 August 2016 / Accepted: 8 October 2016 / Published: 3 February 2017
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Abstract
This study describes the development and validation of an enriched oligonucleotide-microarray platform for Sparus aurata (SAQ) to provide a platform for transcriptomic studies in this species. A transcriptome database was constructed by assembly of gilthead sea bream sequences derived from public repositories of
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This study describes the development and validation of an enriched oligonucleotide-microarray platform for Sparus aurata (SAQ) to provide a platform for transcriptomic studies in this species. A transcriptome database was constructed by assembly of gilthead sea bream sequences derived from public repositories of mRNA together with reads from a large collection of expressed sequence tags (EST) from two extensive targeted cDNA libraries characterizing mRNA transcripts regulated by both bacterial and viral challenge. The developed microarray was further validated by analysing monocyte/macrophage activation profiles after challenge with two Gram-negative bacterial pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs; lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and peptidoglycan (PGN)). Of the approximately 10,000 EST sequenced, we obtained a total of 6837 EST longer than 100 nt, with 3778 and 3059 EST obtained from the bacterial-primed and from the viral-primed cDNA libraries, respectively. Functional classification of contigs from the bacterial- and viral-primed cDNA libraries by Gene Ontology (GO) showed that the top five represented categories were equally represented in the two libraries: metabolism (approximately 24% of the total number of contigs), carrier proteins/membrane transport (approximately 15%), effectors/modulators and cell communication (approximately 11%), nucleoside, nucleotide and nucleic acid metabolism (approximately 7.5%) and intracellular transducers/signal transduction (approximately 5%). Transcriptome analyses using this enriched oligonucleotide platform identified differential shifts in the response to PGN and LPS in macrophage-like cells, highlighting responsive gene-cassettes tightly related to PAMP host recognition. As observed in other fish species, PGN is a powerful activator of the inflammatory response in S. aurata macrophage-like cells. We have developed and validated an oligonucleotide microarray (SAQ) that provides a platform enriched for the study of gene expression in S. aurata with an emphasis upon immunity and the immune response. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessCommunication Clinical and Molecular Evidence of ABCC11 Protein Expression in Axillary Apocrine Glands of Patients with Axillary Osmidrosis
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 417; doi:10.3390/ijms18020417
Received: 28 December 2016 / Revised: 18 January 2017 / Accepted: 13 February 2017 / Published: 15 February 2017
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Abstract
Accumulating evidence suggests that the risk of axillary osmidrosis is governed by a non-synonymous single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) 538G>A in human ATP-binding cassette C11 (ABCC11) gene. However, little data are available for the expression of ABCC11 protein in human axillary apocrine
[...] Read more.
Accumulating evidence suggests that the risk of axillary osmidrosis is governed by a non-synonymous single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) 538G>A in human ATP-binding cassette C11 (ABCC11) gene. However, little data are available for the expression of ABCC11 protein in human axillary apocrine glands that produce apocrine sweat—a source of odor from the armpits. To determine the effect of the non-synonymous SNP ABCC11 538G>A (G180R) on the ABCC11 in vivo, we generated transiently ABCC11-expressing transgenic mice with adenovirus vector, and examined the protein levels of each ABCC11 in the mice with immunoblotting using an anti-ABCC11 antibody we have generated in the present study. Furthermore, we examined the expression of ABCC11 protein in human axillary apocrine glands extracted from axillary osmidrosis patients carrying each ABCC11 genotype: 538GG, GA, and AA. Analyses of transiently ABCC11-expressing transgenic mice showed that ABCC11 538G>A diminishes the ABCC11 protein levels in vivo. Consistently, ABCC11 protein was detected in the human axillary apocrine glands of the 538GG homozygote or 538GA heterozygote, not in the 538AA homozygote. These findings would contribute to a better understanding of the molecular basis of axillary osmidrosis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physiological and Pathological Roles of ABC Transporters)
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Open AccessArticle Bifidobacterium adolescentis Exerts Strain-Specific Effects on Constipation Induced by Loperamide in BALB/c Mice
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 318; doi:10.3390/ijms18020318
Received: 19 October 2016 / Revised: 20 January 2017 / Accepted: 23 January 2017 / Published: 20 February 2017
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Abstract
Constipation is one of the most common gastrointestinal complaints worldwide. This study was performed to determine whether Bifidobacterium adolescentis exerts inter-strain differences in alleviating constipation induced by loperamide in BALB/c mice and to analyze the main reasons for these differences. BALB/c mice underwent
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Constipation is one of the most common gastrointestinal complaints worldwide. This study was performed to determine whether Bifidobacterium adolescentis exerts inter-strain differences in alleviating constipation induced by loperamide in BALB/c mice and to analyze the main reasons for these differences. BALB/c mice underwent gavage with B. adolescentis (CCFM 626, 667, and 669) once per day for 17 days. The primary outcome measures included related constipation indicators, and the secondary outcome measures were the basic biological characteristics of the strains, the concentration changes of short-chain fatty acids in feces, and the changes in the fecal flora. B. adolescentis CCFM 669 and 667 relieved constipation symptoms by adhering to intestinal epithelial cells, growing quickly in vitro and increasing the concentrations of propionic and butyric acids. The effect of B. adolescentis on the gut microbiota in mice with constipation was investigated via 16S rRNA metagenomic analysis. The results revealed that the relative abundance of Lactobacillus increased and the amount of Clostridium decreased in the B. adolescentis CCFM 669 and 667 treatment groups. In conclusion, B. adolescentis exhibits strain-specific effects in the alleviation of constipation, mostly due to the strains’ growth rates, adhesive capacity and effects on the gut microbiome and microenvironment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessArticle LC-MS/MS Analysis Unravels Deep Oxidation of Manganese Superoxide Dismutase in Kidney Cancer
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 319; doi:10.3390/ijms18020319
Received: 19 October 2016 / Revised: 11 January 2017 / Accepted: 25 January 2017 / Published: 4 February 2017
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1955 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Manganese superoxide dismutase (MNSOD) is one of the major scavengers of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in mitochondria with pivotal regulatory role in ischemic disorders, inflammation and cancer. Here we report oxidative modification of MNSOD in human renal cell carcinoma (RCC) by the shotgun
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Manganese superoxide dismutase (MNSOD) is one of the major scavengers of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in mitochondria with pivotal regulatory role in ischemic disorders, inflammation and cancer. Here we report oxidative modification of MNSOD in human renal cell carcinoma (RCC) by the shotgun method using data-dependent liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). While 5816 and 5571 proteins were identified in cancer and adjacent tissues, respectively, 208 proteins were found to be up- or down-regulated (p < 0.05). Ontological category, interaction network and Western blotting suggested a close correlation between RCC-mediated proteins and oxidoreductases such as MNSOD. Markedly, oxidative modifications of MNSOD were identified at histidine (H54 and H55), tyrosine (Y58), tryptophan (W147, W149, W205 and W210) and asparagine (N206 and N209) residues additional to methionine. These oxidative insults were located at three hotspots near the hydrophobic pocket of the manganese binding site, of which the oxidation of Y58, W147 and W149 was up-regulated around three folds and the oxidation of H54 and H55 was detected in the cancer tissues only (p < 0.05). When normalized to MNSOD expression levels, relative MNSOD enzymatic activity was decreased in cancer tissues, suggesting impairment of MNSOD enzymatic activity in kidney cancer due to modifications. Thus, LC-MS/MS analysis revealed multiple oxidative modifications of MNSOD at different amino acid residues that might mediate the regulation of the superoxide radicals, mitochondrial ROS scavenging and MNSOD activity in kidney cancer. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Advances in Proteomic Research)
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Open AccessArticle Genome-Wide Prediction of DNA Methylation Using DNA Composition and Sequence Complexity in Human
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 420; doi:10.3390/ijms18020420
Received: 3 January 2017 / Revised: 3 February 2017 / Accepted: 8 February 2017 / Published: 16 February 2017
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Abstract
DNA methylation plays a significant role in transcriptional regulation by repressing activity. Change of the DNA methylation level is an important factor affecting the expression of target genes and downstream phenotypes. Because current experimental technologies can only assay a small proportion of CpG
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DNA methylation plays a significant role in transcriptional regulation by repressing activity. Change of the DNA methylation level is an important factor affecting the expression of target genes and downstream phenotypes. Because current experimental technologies can only assay a small proportion of CpG sites in the human genome, it is urgent to develop reliable computational models for predicting genome-wide DNA methylation. Here, we proposed a novel algorithm that accurately extracted sequence complexity features (seven features) and developed a support-vector-machine-based prediction model with integration of the reported DNA composition features (trinucleotide frequency and GC content, 65 features) by utilizing the methylation profiles of embryonic stem cells in human. The prediction results from 22 human chromosomes with size-varied windows showed that the 600-bp window achieved the best average accuracy of 94.7%. Moreover, comparisons with two existing methods further showed the superiority of our model, and cross-species predictions on mouse data also demonstrated that our model has certain generalization ability. Finally, a statistical test of the experimental data and the predicted data on functional regions annotated by ChromHMM found that six out of 10 regions were consistent, which implies reliable prediction of unassayed CpG sites. Accordingly, we believe that our novel model will be useful and reliable in predicting DNA methylation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessArticle Plumbagin Suppresses α-MSH-Induced Melanogenesis in B16F10 Mouse Melanoma Cells by Inhibiting Tyrosinase Activity
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 320; doi:10.3390/ijms18020320
Received: 29 December 2016 / Revised: 22 January 2017 / Accepted: 26 January 2017 / Published: 3 February 2017
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Abstract
Recent studies have shown that plumbagin has anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic, antibacterial, and anti-cancer activities; however, it has not yet been shown whether plumbagin suppresses alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH)-induced melanin synthesis to prevent hyperpigmentation. In this study, we demonstrated that plumbagin significantly suppresses α-MSH-stimulated melanin
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Recent studies have shown that plumbagin has anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic, antibacterial, and anti-cancer activities; however, it has not yet been shown whether plumbagin suppresses alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH)-induced melanin synthesis to prevent hyperpigmentation. In this study, we demonstrated that plumbagin significantly suppresses α-MSH-stimulated melanin synthesis in B16F10 mouse melanoma cells. To understand the inhibitory mechanism of plumbagin on melanin synthesis, we performed cellular or cell-free tyrosinase activity assays and analyzed melanogenesis-related gene expression. We demonstrated that plumbagin directly suppresses tyrosinase activity independent of the transcriptional machinery associated with melanogenesis, which includes micropthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF), tyrosinase (TYR), and tyrosinase-related protein 1 (TYRP1). We also investigated whether plumbagin was toxic to normal human keratinocytes (HaCaT) and lens epithelial cells (B3) that may be injured by using skin-care cosmetics. Surprisingly, lower plumbagin concentrations (0.5–1 μM) effectively inhibited melanin synthesis and tyrosinase activity but do not cause toxicity in keratinocytes, lens epithelial cells, and B16F10 mouse melanoma cells, suggesting that plumbagin is safe for dermal application. Taken together, these results suggest that the inhibitory effect of plumbagin to pigmentation may make it an acceptable and safe component for use in skin-care cosmetic formulations used for skin whitening. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutrients and Phytochemicals for Skin Health)
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Open AccessArticle Concurrent Autophagy Inhibition Overcomes the Resistance of Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors in Human Bladder Cancer Cells
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 321; doi:10.3390/ijms18020321
Received: 16 December 2016 / Revised: 17 January 2017 / Accepted: 27 January 2017 / Published: 4 February 2017
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Abstract
Despite the potential therapeutic efficacy of epithelial growth factor receptor (EGFR) inhibitors in the treatment of advanced stage bladder cancer, there currently is no clear evidence to support this hypothesis. In this study, we investigate whether the concurrent treatment of autophagy-blocking agents with
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Despite the potential therapeutic efficacy of epithelial growth factor receptor (EGFR) inhibitors in the treatment of advanced stage bladder cancer, there currently is no clear evidence to support this hypothesis. In this study, we investigate whether the concurrent treatment of autophagy-blocking agents with EGFR inhibitors exerts synergistic anti-cancer effects in T24 and J82 human bladder cancer cells. Lapatinib and gefitinib were used as EGFR inhibitors, and bafilomycin A1 (BFA1), chloroquine (CQ) and 3-methyladenine (3-MA) were used as the pharmacologic inhibitors of autophagy activities. To assess the proliferative and self-renewal capabilities, the Cell Counting Kit-8 (CCK-8) assay and a clonogenic assay were performed, respectively. To examine apoptotic cell death, flow cytometry using annexin-V/propidium iodide (PI) was used. To measure the autophagy activities, the expression levels of LC3I and II was determined by Western blot analysis. To validate the synergistic effects of autophagy inhibition with EGFR inhibitors, we specifically blocked key autophagy regulatory gene ATG12 by transfection of small interference RNA and examined the phenotypic changes. Of note, lapatinib and gefitinib triggered autophagy activities in T24 and J82 human bladder cancer cells, as indicated by upregulation of LC3II. More importantly, inhibiting autophagy activities with pharmacologic inhibitors (BFA1, CQ or 3-MA) remarkably reduced the cell viabilities and clonal proliferation of T24 and J82 cells, compared to those treated with either of the agents alone. We also obtained similar results of the enhanced anti-cancer effects of EGFR inhibitors by suppressing the expression of ATG12. Notably, the apoptotic assay showed that synergistic anti-cancer effects were induced via the increase of apoptotic cell death. In summary, concomitant inhibition of autophagy activities potentiated the anti-cancer effects of EGFR inhibitors in human bladder cancer cells, indicating a novel therapeutic strategy to treat advanced bladder cancer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessArticle Metabolic Effects of Berries with Structurally Diverse Anthocyanins
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 422; doi:10.3390/ijms18020422
Received: 30 December 2016 / Revised: 7 February 2017 / Accepted: 8 February 2017 / Published: 15 February 2017
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Abstract
Overconsumption of energy dense foods and sedentary lifestyle are considered as major causes of obesity-associated insulin resistance and abnormal glucose metabolism. Results from both cohort studies and randomized trials suggested that anthocyanins from berries may lower metabolic risks, however these reports are equivocal.
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Overconsumption of energy dense foods and sedentary lifestyle are considered as major causes of obesity-associated insulin resistance and abnormal glucose metabolism. Results from both cohort studies and randomized trials suggested that anthocyanins from berries may lower metabolic risks, however these reports are equivocal. The present study was designed to examine effects of six berries with structurally diverse anthocyanin profiles (normalized to 400 µg/g total anthocyanin content) on development of metabolic risk factors in the C57BL/6 mouse model of polygenic obesity. Diets supplemented with blackberry (mono-glycosylated cyanidins), black raspberry (acylated mono-glycosylated cyanidins), blackcurrant (mono- and di-glycosylated cyanidins and delphinidins), maqui berry (di-glycosylated delphinidins), Concord grape (acylated mono-glycosylated delphinidins and petunidins), and blueberry (mono-glycosylated delphinidins, malvidins, and petunidins) showed a prominent discrepancy between biological activities of delphinidin/malvidin-versus cyanidin-type anthocyanins that could be explained by differences in their structure and metabolism in the gut. Consumption of berries also resulted in a strong shift in the gastrointestinal bacterial communities towards obligate anaerobes that correlated with decrease in the gastrointestinal luminal oxygen and oxidative stress. Further work is needed to understand mechanisms that lead to nearly anoxic conditions in the gut lumens, including the relative contributions of host, diet and/or microbial oxidative activity, and their implication to human health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Anthocyanins)
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Open AccessArticle Anti-Osteoclastic Activity of Artemisia capillaris Thunb. Extract Depends upon Attenuation of Osteoclast Differentiation and Bone Resorption-Associated Acidification Due to Chlorogenic Acid, Hyperoside, and Scoparone
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 322; doi:10.3390/ijms18020322
Received: 14 December 2016 / Revised: 23 January 2017 / Accepted: 26 January 2017 / Published: 4 February 2017
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Abstract
The present study attempts to elucidate the anti-osteoporotic activity of Artemisia capillaris Thunb. in the form of anti-osteoclastic effect and responsible bioactive compounds. The contents of chlorogenic acid, caffeic acid, hyperoside, isoquercitrin, isochlorogenic acid A, and scoparone in Artemisia capillaris hydroethanolic extract (ACHE)
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The present study attempts to elucidate the anti-osteoporotic activity of Artemisia capillaris Thunb. in the form of anti-osteoclastic effect and responsible bioactive compounds. The contents of chlorogenic acid, caffeic acid, hyperoside, isoquercitrin, isochlorogenic acid A, and scoparone in Artemisia capillaris hydroethanolic extract (ACHE) were 38.53, 0.52, 4.07, 3.03, 13.90, and 6.59 mg/g, respectively. ACHE diminished osteoclast differentiation and bone resorption due to chlorogenic acid, hyperoside, and scoparone. In addition, ACHE attenuated acidification as well as reducing tumor necrosis factor receptor-associated factor 6 (TRAF6) expression and its association with vacuolar H+-adenosine triphosphatase (V-ATPase). Furthermore, chlorogenic acid, hyperoside, and scoparone from A. capillaris abrogated the association of V-ATPase with TRAF6, suggesting that the blockage of bone resorption by A. capillaris was partially mediated by reducing acidification through down-regulating interaction of V-ATPase with TRAF6 due to scoparone as well as chlorogenic acid and hyperoside. These results imply that the anti-osteoclastic effect of A. capillaris through down-regulating osteoclast differentiation and bone resorption may contribute to its anti-osteoporotic effect. Full article
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Open AccessArticle A Dual-Modality System for Both Multi-Color Ultrasound-Switchable Fluorescence and Ultrasound Imaging
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 323; doi:10.3390/ijms18020323
Received: 25 October 2016 / Revised: 29 December 2016 / Accepted: 24 January 2017 / Published: 4 February 2017
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Abstract
Simultaneous imaging of multiple targets (SIMT) in opaque biological tissues is an important goal for molecular imaging in the future. Multi-color fluorescence imaging in deep tissues is a promising technology to reach this goal. In this work, we developed a dual-modality imaging system
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Simultaneous imaging of multiple targets (SIMT) in opaque biological tissues is an important goal for molecular imaging in the future. Multi-color fluorescence imaging in deep tissues is a promising technology to reach this goal. In this work, we developed a dual-modality imaging system by combining our recently developed ultrasound-switchable fluorescence (USF) imaging technology with the conventional ultrasound (US) B-mode imaging. This dual-modality system can simultaneously image tissue acoustic structure information and multi-color fluorophores in centimeter-deep tissue with comparable spatial resolutions. To conduct USF imaging on the same plane (i.e., x-z plane) as US imaging, we adopted two 90°-crossed ultrasound transducers with an overlapped focal region, while the US transducer (the third one) was positioned at the center of these two USF transducers. Thus, the axial resolution of USF is close to the lateral resolution, which allows a point-by-point USF scanning on the same plane as the US imaging. Both multi-color USF and ultrasound imaging of a tissue phantom were demonstrated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cancer Molecular Imaging in the Era of Precision Medicine)
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Open AccessArticle A Gin4-Like Protein Kinase GIL1 Involvement in Hyphal Growth, Asexual Development, and Pathogenesis in Fusarium graminearum
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 424; doi:10.3390/ijms18020424
Received: 31 August 2016 / Revised: 2 February 2017 / Accepted: 4 February 2017 / Published: 16 February 2017
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Abstract
Fusarium graminearum is the main causal agent of Fusarium head blight (FHB) on wheat and barley. In a previous study, a GIN4-like protein kinase gene, GIL1, was found to be important for plant infection and sexual reproduction. In this study we further
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Fusarium graminearum is the main causal agent of Fusarium head blight (FHB) on wheat and barley. In a previous study, a GIN4-like protein kinase gene, GIL1, was found to be important for plant infection and sexual reproduction. In this study we further characterized the functions of GIL1 kinase in different developmental processes. The Δgil1 mutants were reduced in growth, conidiation, and virulence, and formed whitish and compact colonies. Although phialide formation was rarely observed in the mutants, deletion of GIL1 resulted in increased hyphal branching and increased tolerance to cell wall and cell membrane stresses. The Δgil1 mutants produced straight, elongated conidia lacking of distinct foot cells and being delayed in germination. Compared with the wild type, some compartments in the vegetative hyphae of Δgil1 mutants had longer septal distances and increased number of nuclei, suggesting GIL1 is related to cytokinesis and septation. Localization of the GIL1-GFP fusion proteins to the septum and hyphal branching and fusion sites further supported its roles in septation and branching. Overall, our results indicate that GIL1 plays a role in vegetative growth and plant infection in F. graminearum, and is involved in septation and hyphal branching. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Botany)
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Open AccessArticle Chemoprevention of Rat Mammary Carcinogenesis by Apiaceae Spices
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 425; doi:10.3390/ijms18020425
Received: 21 December 2016 / Revised: 17 January 2017 / Accepted: 8 February 2017 / Published: 16 February 2017
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Abstract
Scientific evidence suggests that many herbs and spices have medicinal properties that alleviate symptoms or prevent disease. In this study, we examined the chemopreventive effects of the Apiaceae spices, anise, caraway, and celery seeds against 17β-estrogen (E2)-mediated mammary tumorigenesis in an ACI (August-Copenhagen
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Scientific evidence suggests that many herbs and spices have medicinal properties that alleviate symptoms or prevent disease. In this study, we examined the chemopreventive effects of the Apiaceae spices, anise, caraway, and celery seeds against 17β-estrogen (E2)-mediated mammary tumorigenesis in an ACI (August-Copenhagen Irish) rat model. Female ACI rats were given either control diet (AIN 93M) or diet supplemented with 7.5% (w/w) of anise, caraway, or celery seed powder. Two weeks later, one half of the animals in each group received subcutaneous silastic implants of E2. Diet intake and body weight were recorded weekly, and animals were euthanized after 3 and 12 weeks. E2-treatment showed significantly (2.1- and 3.4-fold) enhanced growth of pituitary gland at 3 and 12 weeks, respectively. All test spices significantly offset the pituitary growth by 12 weeks, except celery which was effective as early as three weeks. Immunohistochemical analysis for proliferative cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) in mammary tissues showed significant reduction in E2-mediated mammary cell proliferation. Test spices reduced the circulating levels of both E2 and prolactin at three weeks. This protection was more pronounced at 12 weeks, with celery eliciting the highest effect. RT-PCR and western blot analysis were performed to determine the potential molecular targets of the spices. Anise and caraway diets significantly offset estrogen-mediated overexpression of both cyclin D1 and estrogen receptor α (ERα). The effect of anise was modest. Likewise, expression of CYP1B1 and CYP1A1 was inhibited by all test spices. Based on short-term molecular markers, caraway was selected over other spices based on its enhanced effect on estrogen-associated pathway. Therefore, a tumor-end point study in ACI rats was conducted with dietary caraway. Tumor palpation from 12 weeks onwards revealed tumor latency of 29 days in caraway-treated animals compared with first tumor appearance at 92 days in control group. At the end of the study (25 weeks), the tumor incidence was 96% in the control group compared with only 70% in the caraway group. A significant reduction in tumor volume (661 ± 123 vs. 313 ± 81 mm3) and tumor multiplicity (4.2 ± 0.4 vs. 2.5 ± 0.5 tumors/animal) was also observed in the caraway group compared with the control group. Together, our data show dietary caraway can significantly delay and prevent the hormonal mammary tumorigenesis by modulating different cellular and molecular targets. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Sphingosine Kinase-1 Involves the Inhibitory Action of HIF-1α by Chlorogenic Acid in Hypoxic DU145 Cells
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 325; doi:10.3390/ijms18020325
Received: 20 December 2016 / Revised: 18 January 2017 / Accepted: 22 January 2017 / Published: 4 February 2017
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Abstract
Hypoxia enhances cancer development in a solid tumor. Hypoxia-inducible factor-1 α (HIF-1α) is a transcription factor that is dominantly expressed under hypoxia in solid tumor cells and is a key factor that regulates tumor. HIF-1α regulates several target genes involved in many aspects
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Hypoxia enhances cancer development in a solid tumor. Hypoxia-inducible factor-1 α (HIF-1α) is a transcription factor that is dominantly expressed under hypoxia in solid tumor cells and is a key factor that regulates tumor. HIF-1α regulates several target genes involved in many aspects of cancer progression, including angiogenesis, metastasis, anti-apoptosis and cell proliferation as well as imparts resistance to cancer treatment. In this study, we assessed Crataegus Pinnatifida Bunge var. typical Schneider ethanol extract (CPE) for its anti-cancer effects in hypoxia-induced DU145 human prostate cancer cell line. CPE decreased the abundance of HIF-1α and sphingosine kinase-1 (SPHK-1) in hypoxia-induced prostate cancer DU145 cells. CPE decreased HIF-1α and SPHK-1 as well as SPHK-1 activity. Chlorogenic acid (CA) is one of four major compounds of CPE. Compared to CPE, CA significantly decreased the expression of HIF-1α and SPHK-1 as well as SPHK-1 activity in hypoxia-induced DU145 cells. Furthermore, CA decreased phosphorylation AKT and GSK-3β, which are associated with HIF-1α stabilization and affected SPHK-1 in a concentration-dependent manner. We confirmed the mechanism of CA-induced inhibition of HIF-1α by SPHK-1 signaling pathway using SPHK-1 siRNA and SPHK inhibitor (SKI). CA decreased the secretion and cellular expression of VEGF, thus inhibiting hypoxia-induced angiogenesis. Treatment of DU145cells with SPHK1 siRNA and CA for 48 h decreased cancer cell growth, and the inhibitory action of SPHK siRNA and CA on cell growth was confirmed by decrease in the abundance of Proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA). Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Advances in Molecular Oncology)
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Open AccessArticle Reduced SHARPIN and LUBAC Formation May Contribute to CCl4- or Acetaminophen-Induced Liver Cirrhosis in Mice
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 326; doi:10.3390/ijms18020326
Received: 9 January 2017 / Revised: 26 January 2017 / Accepted: 26 January 2017 / Published: 4 February 2017
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Abstract
Linear ubiquitin chain assembly complex (LUBAC), composed of SHARPIN (SHANK-associated RH domain-interacting protein), HOIL-1L (longer isoform of heme-oxidized iron-regulatory protein 2 ubiquitin ligase-1), and HOIP (HOIL-1L interacting protein), forms linear ubiquitin on nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) essential modulator (NEMO) and induces NF-κB pathway activation.
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Linear ubiquitin chain assembly complex (LUBAC), composed of SHARPIN (SHANK-associated RH domain-interacting protein), HOIL-1L (longer isoform of heme-oxidized iron-regulatory protein 2 ubiquitin ligase-1), and HOIP (HOIL-1L interacting protein), forms linear ubiquitin on nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) essential modulator (NEMO) and induces NF-κB pathway activation. SHARPIN expression and LUBAC formation were significantly reduced in the livers of mice 24 h after the injection of either carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) or acetaminophen (APAP), both of which produced the fulminant hepatitis phenotype. To elucidate its pathological significance, hepatic SHARPIN expression was suppressed in mice by injecting shRNA adenovirus via the tail vein. Seven days after this transduction, without additional inflammatory stimuli, substantial inflammation and fibrosis with enhanced hepatocyte apoptosis occurred in the livers. A similar but more severe phenotype was observed with suppression of HOIP, which is responsible for the E3 ligase activity of LUBAC. Furthermore, in good agreement with these in vivo results, transduction of Hepa1-6 hepatoma cells with SHARPIN, HOIL-1L, or HOIP shRNA adenovirus induced apoptosis of these cells in response to tumor necrosis factor-α (TNFα) stimulation. Thus, LUBAC is essential for the survival of hepatocytes, and it is likely that reduction of LUBAC is a factor promoting hepatocyte death in addition to the direct effect of drug toxicity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Research on Drug Induced Liver Injury)
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Open AccessArticle Isolation and Characterization of Gramineae and Fabaceae Soda Lignins
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 327; doi:10.3390/ijms18020327
Received: 9 January 2017 / Revised: 25 January 2017 / Accepted: 26 January 2017 / Published: 4 February 2017
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Abstract
Some agricultural residues such as wheat or barley straw, as well as certain fast-growing plants like Leucaena leucocephala and Chamaecytisus proliferus, could be used as raw materials for the paper industry as an alternative to traditional plants (eucalyptus, pine, etc.). In the
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Some agricultural residues such as wheat or barley straw, as well as certain fast-growing plants like Leucaena leucocephala and Chamaecytisus proliferus, could be used as raw materials for the paper industry as an alternative to traditional plants (eucalyptus, pine, etc.). In the present study, four types of lignin obtained from the spent liquors produced by the pulping processes using the abovementioned feedstocks were isolated and characterized. Lignin samples were acquired through an acid precipitation from these spent liquors. The characterization of the precipitated lignin samples were performed using a Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR) and both liquid- and solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR) to analyse the chemical structure, and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) for determining the thermal properties. Additionally, chemical composition of lignin fractions was also measured. Even though they were of different botanical origin, all the studied samples except for wheat straw lignin had a similar chemical composition and thermal behaviour, and identical chemical structure. Wheat straw lignin showed a greater amount of Klason lignin and lower carbohydrate content. Furthermore, this lignin sample showed a higher thermal stability and significantly different cross-peak patterns in the 2D-NMR experiments. The molecular structures corresponding to p-coumarate (PCA), ferulate (FA) and cinnamyl aldehyde end-groups (J) were only detected in wheat isolated lignin. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Lignin Challenge: Exploring Innovative Applications)
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Open AccessArticle Synthesis of 8-Aryl-O-methylcyanidins and Their Usage for Dye-Sensitized Solar Cell Devices
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 427; doi:10.3390/ijms18020427
Received: 24 December 2016 / Revised: 3 February 2017 / Accepted: 9 February 2017 / Published: 16 February 2017
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Abstract
Anthocyanins as natural pigments are colorful and environmentally compatible dyes for dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). To increase the efficiency, we designed and synthesized unnatural O-methylflavonols and O-methylcyanidins that possess an aryl group at the 8-position. We synthesized per-O-methylquercetin
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Anthocyanins as natural pigments are colorful and environmentally compatible dyes for dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). To increase the efficiency, we designed and synthesized unnatural O-methylflavonols and O-methylcyanidins that possess an aryl group at the 8-position. We synthesized per-O-methylquercetin from quercetin, then using selective demethylation prepared various O-methylquercetins. Using the Suzuki-Miyaura coupling reaction, 8-arylation of per-O-methylquercetin was achieved. Using a LiAlH4 reduction or Clemmensen reduction, these flavonols were transformed to the corresponding cyanidin derivatives in satisfactory yields. Using these dyes, we fabricated DSSCs, and their efficiency was investigated. The efficiency of tetra-O-methylflavonol was 0.31%. However, the introduction of the 8-aryl residue increased the efficiency to 1.04%. In comparison to these flavonols, O-methylcyanidins exhibited a lower efficiency of 0.05% to 0.52%. The introduction of the 8-aryl group into the cyanidin derivatives did not result in a remarkable increase in the efficiency. These phenomena may be due to the poor fit of the HOMO-LUMO level of the dyes to the TiO2 conduction band. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Anthocyanins)
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Open AccessArticle Differential Gene Expression in the Meristem and during Early Fruit Growth of Pisum sativum L. Identifies Potential Targets for Breeding
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 428; doi:10.3390/ijms18020428
Received: 4 October 2016 / Revised: 15 December 2016 / Accepted: 8 February 2017 / Published: 16 February 2017
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Abstract
For successful molecular breeding it is important to identify targets to the gene family level, and in the specific species of interest, in this case Pisum sativum L. The cytokinins have been identified as a key breeding target due to their influence on
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For successful molecular breeding it is important to identify targets to the gene family level, and in the specific species of interest, in this case Pisum sativum L. The cytokinins have been identified as a key breeding target due to their influence on plant architecture, and on seed size and sink activity. We focused on the cytokinin biosynthetic gene family (the IPTs) and the gene family key to the destruction of cytokinins (the CKXs), as well as other gene families potentially affected by changing cytokinin levels. These included key meristem genes (WUS and BAM1) and the transporter gene families, sucrose transporters (SUTs) and amino acid permeases (AAPs). We used reverse transcription quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) to monitor gene expression in the vegetative meristem and in pre- and post-fertilisation young pea fruits. PsWUS expression was specific to the shoot apical meristem while PsBAM1 was highly expressed in the shoot apical meristem (SAM) but was also expressed at a low level in the young fruit. Differential expression was shown between genes and within gene families for IPT, CKX, SUT, and AAP. PsCKX7 showed strong gene family member-specific expression in the SAM, and was also expressed in young pea fruits. We suggest that PsCKX7 is a potential target for downregulation via molecular breeding or gene editing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pulses)
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Open AccessArticle The Dynamics of the Defense Strategy of Pea Induced by Exogenous Nitric Oxide in Response to Aphid Infestation
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 329; doi:10.3390/ijms18020329
Received: 1 August 2016 / Revised: 12 January 2017 / Accepted: 19 January 2017 / Published: 5 February 2017
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Abstract
The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of exogenous nitric oxide (NO), i.e., S-nitrosoglutathione (GSNO) and sodium nitroprusside (SNP), on the metabolic status of Pisum sativum L. cv. Cysterski leaves infested by Acyrthosiphon pisum Harris, population demographic parameters and
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The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of exogenous nitric oxide (NO), i.e., S-nitrosoglutathione (GSNO) and sodium nitroprusside (SNP), on the metabolic status of Pisum sativum L. cv. Cysterski leaves infested by Acyrthosiphon pisum Harris, population demographic parameters and A. pisum feeding activity. A reduction in the level of semiquinone radicals in pea seedling leaves pretreated with exogenous NO occurred 24 h after A. pisum infestation, which was earlier than in non-pretreated leaves. A decrease in the level of O2•− was observed in leaves pretreated with GSNO and infested by aphids at 48 and 72 h post-infestation (hpi). Directly after the pretreatment with GSNO, an increase in the level of metal ions was recorded. NO considerably induced the relative mRNA levels for phenylalanine ammonia-lyase in 24-h leaves pretreated with NO donors, both non-infested and infested. NO stimulated the accumulation of pisatin in leaves until 24 h. The Electrical Penetration Graph revealed a reduction in the feeding activity of the pea aphid on leaves pretreated with NO. The present study showed that foliar application of NO donors induced sequentially defense reactions of pea against A. pisum and had a deterrent effect on aphid feeding and limited the population growth rate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant-Insect Interactions)
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Open AccessArticle Succinimide Formation from an NGR-Containing Cyclic Peptide: Computational Evidence for Catalytic Roles of Phosphate Buffer and the Arginine Side Chain
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 429; doi:10.3390/ijms18020429
Received: 20 December 2016 / Revised: 17 January 2017 / Accepted: 10 February 2017 / Published: 16 February 2017
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Abstract
The Asn-Gly-Arg (NGR) motif and its deamidation product isoAsp-Gly-Arg (isoDGR) have recently attracted considerable attention as tumor-targeting ligands. Because an NGR-containing peptide and the corresponding isoDGR-containing peptide target different receptors, the spontaneous NGR deamidation can be used in dual
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The Asn-Gly-Arg (NGR) motif and its deamidation product isoAsp-Gly-Arg (isoDGR) have recently attracted considerable attention as tumor-targeting ligands. Because an NGR-containing peptide and the corresponding isoDGR-containing peptide target different receptors, the spontaneous NGR deamidation can be used in dual targeting strategies. It is well known that the Asn deamidation proceeds via a succinimide derivative. In the present study, we computationally investigated the mechanism of succinimide formation from a cyclic peptide, c[CH2CO-NGRC]-NH2, which has recently been shown to undergo rapid deamidation in a phosphate buffer. An H2PO4 ion was explicitly included in the calculations. We employed the density functional theory using the B3LYP functional. While geometry optimizations were performed in the gas phase, hydration Gibbs energies were calculated by the SM8 (solvation model 8) continuum model. We have found a pathway leading to the five-membered ring tetrahedral intermediate in which both the H2PO4 ion and the Arg side chain act as catalyst. This intermediate, once protonated at the NH2 group on the five-membered ring, was shown to easily undergo NH3 elimination leading to the succinimide formation. This study is the first to propose a possible catalytic role for the Arg side chain in the NGR deamidation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chemical Bond and Bonding 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Analysis of Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Related Gene Expression Changes in a Cellular and Animal Model of Parkinson’s Disease
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 430; doi:10.3390/ijms18020430
Received: 24 October 2016 / Revised: 27 January 2017 / Accepted: 8 February 2017 / Published: 16 February 2017
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Abstract
We employed transcriptome analysis of epidermal growth factor receptor related gene expression changes in cellular and animal models of Parkinson’s disease (PD). We used a well-known Parkinsonian toxin 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridine (MPP+) to induce neuronal apoptosis in the human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cell line.
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We employed transcriptome analysis of epidermal growth factor receptor related gene expression changes in cellular and animal models of Parkinson’s disease (PD). We used a well-known Parkinsonian toxin 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridine (MPP+) to induce neuronal apoptosis in the human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cell line. The MPP+-treatment of SH-SY5Y cells was capable of inducing neuro-apoptosis, but it remains unclear what kinds of transcriptional genes are affected by MPP+ toxicity. Therefore the pathways that were significantly perturbed in MPP+ treated human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells were identified based on genome-wide gene expression data at two time points (24 and 48 h). We found that the Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor (EGFR) pathway-related genes showed significantly differential expression at all time points. The EGFR pathway has been linked to diverse cellular events such as proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis. Further, to evaluate the functional significance of the altered EGFR related gene expression observed in MPP+-treated SH-SY5Y cells, the EGFR related GJB2 (Cx26) gene expression was analyzed in an MPP+-intoxicated animal PD model. Our findings identify that the EGFR signaling pathway and its related genes, such as Cx26, might play a significant role in dopaminergic (DAergic) neuronal cell death during the process of neuro-apoptosis and therefore can be focused on as potential targets for therapeutic intervention. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Transcriptome Profiling in Human Diseases)
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Open AccessArticle Behavior of Gingival Fibroblasts on Titanium Implant Surfaces in Combination with either Injectable-PRF or PRP
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 331; doi:10.3390/ijms18020331
Received: 5 January 2017 / Revised: 18 January 2017 / Accepted: 23 January 2017 / Published: 4 February 2017
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Abstract
Various strategies have been employed to speed tissue regeneration using bioactive molecules. Interestingly, platelet concentrates derived from a patient’s own blood have been utilized as a regenerative strategy in recent years. In the present study, a novel liquid platelet formulation prepared without the
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Various strategies have been employed to speed tissue regeneration using bioactive molecules. Interestingly, platelet concentrates derived from a patient’s own blood have been utilized as a regenerative strategy in recent years. In the present study, a novel liquid platelet formulation prepared without the use of anti-coagulants (injectable-platelet-rich fibrin, i-PRF) was compared to standard platelet-rich plasma (PRP) with gingival fibroblasts cultured on smooth and roughened titanium implant surfaces. Standard PRP and i-PRF (centrifuged at 700 rpm (60× g) for 3 min) were compared by assays for fibroblast biocompatibility, migration, adhesion, proliferation, as well as expression of platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF), transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β), collagen1 (COL1) and fibronectin (FN). The results demonstrate that i-PRF induced significantly higher cell migration, as well as higher messenger RNA (mRNA) levels of PDGF, TGF-β, collagen1 and fibronectin when compared to PRP. Furthermore, collagen1 synthesis was highest in the i-PRF group. These findings demonstrate that liquid platelet concentrates can be formulated without the use of anticoagulants and present much translational potential for future research. Future animal and clinical trials are now necessary to further investigate the potential of utilizing i-PRF for soft tissue regenerative protocols in combination with various biomaterials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessArticle N-Glycoprofiling Analysis for Carbohydrate Composition and Site-Occupancy Determination in a Poly-Glycosylated Protein: Human Thyrotropin of Different Origins
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 131; doi:10.3390/ijms18020131
Received: 19 August 2016 / Revised: 22 December 2016 / Accepted: 28 December 2016 / Published: 3 February 2017
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Abstract
Human thyrotropin (hTSH) is a glycoprotein with three potential glycosylation sites: two in the α-subunit and one in the β-subunit. These sites are not always occupied and occupancy is frequently neglected in glycoprotein characterization, even though it is related to folding, trafficking, initiation
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Human thyrotropin (hTSH) is a glycoprotein with three potential glycosylation sites: two in the α-subunit and one in the β-subunit. These sites are not always occupied and occupancy is frequently neglected in glycoprotein characterization, even though it is related to folding, trafficking, initiation of inflammation and host defense, as well as congenital disorders of glycosylation (CDG). For the first time N-glycoprofiling analysis was applied to the site-occupancy determination of two native pituitary hTSH, in comparison with three recombinant preparations of hTSH, a widely used biopharmaceutical. A single methodology provided the: (i) average N-glycan mass; (ii) mass fraction of each monosaccharide and of sulfate; and (iii) percent carbohydrate. The results indicate that the occupancy (65%–87%) and carbohydrate mass (12%–19%) can be up to 34%–57% higher in recombinant hormones. The average glycan mass is 24% lower in pituitary hTSH and contains ~3-fold fewer moles of galactose (p < 0.005) and sialic acid (p < 0.01). One of the two native preparations, which had the smallest glycan mass together with the lowest occupancy and GalNAc, sulfate, Gal and sialic acid contents, also presented the lowest in vivo bioactivity and circulatory half-life. The methodology described, comparing a recombinant biopharmaceutical to its native equivalent, can be applied to any physiologically or clinical relevant glycoprotein. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Glycan–Receptor Interaction)
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Open AccessArticle Transfer of Anti-Rotavirus Antibodies during Pregnancy and in Milk Following Maternal Vaccination with a Herpes Simplex Virus Type-1 Amplicon Vector
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 431; doi:10.3390/ijms18020431
Received: 30 December 2016 / Revised: 1 February 2017 / Accepted: 9 February 2017 / Published: 16 February 2017
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Abstract
Rotaviruses (RVs) are important enteric pathogens of newborn humans and animals, causing diarrhea and in rare cases death, especially in very young individuals. Rotavirus vaccines presently used are modified live vaccines that lack complete biological safety. Previous work from our laboratory suggested that
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Rotaviruses (RVs) are important enteric pathogens of newborn humans and animals, causing diarrhea and in rare cases death, especially in very young individuals. Rotavirus vaccines presently used are modified live vaccines that lack complete biological safety. Previous work from our laboratory suggested that vaccines based on in situ produced, non-infectious rotavirus-like particles (RVLPs) are efficient while being entirely safe. However, using either vaccine, active mucosal immunization cannot induce protective immunity in newborns due to their immature immune system. We therefore hypothesized that offspring from vaccinated dams are passively immunized either by transfer of maternal antibodies during pregnancy or by taking up antibodies from milk. Using a codon optimized polycistronic gene expression cassette packaged into herpesvirus particles, the simultaneous expression of the RV capsid genes led to the intracellular formation of RVLPs in various cell lines. Vaccinated dams developed a strong RV specific IgG antibody response determined in sera and milk of both mother and pups. Moreover, sera of naïve pups nursed by vaccinated dams also had RV specific antibodies suggesting a lactogenic transfer of antibodies. Although full protection of pups was not achieved in this mouse model, our observations are important for the development of improved vaccines against RV in humans as well as in various animal species. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Reverse Vaccinology)
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Open AccessArticle Low-Intensity Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy Enhances Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor Expression through PERK/ATF4 Signaling Pathway
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 433; doi:10.3390/ijms18020433
Received: 30 December 2016 / Revised: 23 January 2017 / Accepted: 13 February 2017 / Published: 16 February 2017
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Abstract
Low-intensity extracorporeal shock wave therapy (Li-ESWT) is used in the treatment of erectile dysfunction, but its mechanisms are not well understood. Previously, we found that Li-ESWT increased the expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Here we assessed the underlying signaling pathways in Schwann
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Low-intensity extracorporeal shock wave therapy (Li-ESWT) is used in the treatment of erectile dysfunction, but its mechanisms are not well understood. Previously, we found that Li-ESWT increased the expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Here we assessed the underlying signaling pathways in Schwann cells in vitro and in penis tissue in vivo after nerve injury. The result indicated that BDNF were significantly increased by the Li-ESWT after nerve injury, as well as the expression of BDNF in Schwann cells (SCs, RT4-D6P2T) in vitro. Li-ESWT activated the protein kinase RNA-like endoplasmic reticulum (ER) kinase (PERK) pathway by increasing the phosphorylation levels of PERK and eukaryotic initiation factor 2a (eIF2α), and enhanced activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4) in an energy-dependent manner. In addition, GSK2656157—an inhibitor of PERK—effectively inhibited the effect of Li-ESWT on the phosphorylation of PERK, eIF2α, and the expression of ATF4. Furthermore, silencing ATF4 dramatically attenuated the effect of Li-ESWT on the expression of BDNF, but had no effect on hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF)1α or glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) in Schwann cells. In conclusion, our findings shed new light on the underlying mechanisms by which Li-ESWT may stimulate the expression of BDNF through activation of PERK/ATF4 signaling pathway. This information may help to refine the use of Li-ESWT to further improve its clinical efficacy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor)
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Open AccessArticle Identification and Characterization of Lipopolysaccharide Induced TNFα Factor from Blunt Snout Bream, Megalobrama amblycephala
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 233; doi:10.3390/ijms18020233
Received: 19 October 2016 / Revised: 17 January 2017 / Accepted: 18 January 2017 / Published: 15 February 2017
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Abstract
Lipopolysaccharide induced TNFα factor (LITAF) is an important transcription factor responsible for regulation of tumor necrosis factor α. In this study, a novel litaf gene (designated as Malitaf) was identified and characterized from blunt snout bream, Megalobrama amblycephala. The full-length cDNA of
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Lipopolysaccharide induced TNFα factor (LITAF) is an important transcription factor responsible for regulation of tumor necrosis factor α. In this study, a novel litaf gene (designated as Malitaf) was identified and characterized from blunt snout bream, Megalobrama amblycephala. The full-length cDNA of Malitaf was of 956 bp, encoding a polypeptide of 161 amino acids with high similarity to other known LITAFs. A phylogenetic tree also showed that Malitaf significantly clustered with those of other teleost, indicating that Malitaf was a new member of fish LITAF family. The putative maLITAF protein possessed a highly conserved LITAF domain with two CXXC motifs. The mRNA transcripts of Malitaf were detected in all examined tissues of healthy M. amblycephala, including kidney, head kidney, muscle, liver, spleen, gill, and heart, and with the highest expression in immune organs: spleen and head kidney. The expression level of Malitaf in spleen was rapidly up-regulated and peaked (1.29-fold, p < 0.05) at 2 h after lipopolysaccharide (LPS) stimulation. Followed the stimulation of Malitaf, Matnfα transcriptional level was also transiently induced to a high level (51.74-fold, p < 0.001) at 4 h after LPS stimulation. Taken together, we have identified a putative fish LITAF ortholog, which was a constitutive and inducible immune response gene involved in M. amblycephala innate immunity during the course of a pathogenic infection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Lipopolysaccharides (LPSs))
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Open AccessArticle Proteome Characteristics of Non-Alcoholic Steatohepatitis Liver Tissue and Associated Hepatocellular Carcinomas
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 434; doi:10.3390/ijms18020434
Received: 12 December 2016 / Revised: 24 January 2017 / Accepted: 9 February 2017 / Published: 17 February 2017
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Abstract
To uncover mechanisms of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) associated hepatocarcinogenesis, we compared the proteomes of human NASH-associated liver biopsies, resected hepatocellular carcinomas (HCCs) and HCCs of HCV+ patients with normal liver tissue of patients with gastrointestinal tumor metastasis, in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded samples obtained
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To uncover mechanisms of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) associated hepatocarcinogenesis, we compared the proteomes of human NASH-associated liver biopsies, resected hepatocellular carcinomas (HCCs) and HCCs of HCV+ patients with normal liver tissue of patients with gastrointestinal tumor metastasis, in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded samples obtained after surgery in our hospital during the period from 2006 to 2011. In addition, proteome analysis of liver tumors in male STAM NASH-model mice was performed. Similar changes in the proteome spectrum such as overexpression of enzymes involved in lipid, cholesterol and bile acid biosynthesis and examples associated with suppression of fatty acid oxidation and catabolism, alcohol metabolism, mitochondrial function as well as low expression levels of cytokeratins 8 and 18 were observed in both human NASH biopsies and NASH HCCs, but not HCV+ HCCs. Alterations in downstream protein expression pointed to significant activation of transforming growth factor β, SMAD family member 3, β-catenin, Nrf2, SREBP-LXRα and nuclear receptor-interacting protein 1 (NRIP1), and inhibition of PPARs and p53 in human NASH biopsies and/or HCCs, suggesting their involvement in accumulation of lipids, development of fibrosis, oxidative stress, cell proliferation and suppression of apoptosis in NASH hepatocarcinogenesis. In STAM mice, PPARs inhibition was not obvious, while expression of cytokeratins 8 and 18 was elevated, indicative of essential differences between human and mouse NASH pathogenesis. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Proteomic Analysis of Various Rat Ocular Tissues after Ischemia–Reperfusion Injury and Possible Relevance to Acute Glaucoma
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 334; doi:10.3390/ijms18020334
Received: 6 December 2016 / Revised: 26 January 2017 / Accepted: 26 January 2017 / Published: 5 February 2017
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Abstract
Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that can cause vision loss and optical nerve damage. To investigate the protein expression alterations in various intraocular tissues (i.e., the cornea, conjunctiva, uvea, retina, and sclera) during ischemia–reperfusion (IR) injury, this study performed a proteomic
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Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that can cause vision loss and optical nerve damage. To investigate the protein expression alterations in various intraocular tissues (i.e., the cornea, conjunctiva, uvea, retina, and sclera) during ischemia–reperfusion (IR) injury, this study performed a proteomic analysis to qualitatively investigate such alterations resulting from acute glaucoma. The IR injury model combined with the proteomic analysis approach of two-dimensional difference gel electrophoresis (2D-DIGE) and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) was used to monitor the protein expression alterations in two groups of specimens (an IR injury group and a control group). The analysis results revealed 221 unique differentially expressed proteins of a total of 1481 proteins in the cornea between the two groups. In addition, 97 of 1206 conjunctival proteins, 90 of 1354 uveal proteins, 61 of 1180 scleral proteins, and 37 of 1204 retinal proteins were differentially expressed. These findings imply that different ocular tissues have different tolerances against IR injury. To sum up, this study utilized the acute glaucoma model combined with 2D-DIGE and MALDI-TOF MS to investigate the IR injury affected protein expression on various ocular tissues, and based on the ratio of protein expression alterations, the alterations in the ocular tissues were in the following order: the cornea, conjunctiva, uvea, sclera, and retina. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Advances in Proteomic Research)
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Open AccessArticle RNA-Seq Analyses for Two Silkworm Strains Reveals Insight into Their Susceptibility and Resistance to Beauveria bassiana Infection
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 234; doi:10.3390/ijms18020234
Received: 30 November 2016 / Revised: 11 January 2017 / Accepted: 13 January 2017 / Published: 10 February 2017
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Abstract
The silkworm Bombyx mori is an economically important species. White muscardine caused by Beauveria bassiana is the main fungal disease in sericulture, and understanding the silkworm responses to B. bassiana infection is of particular interest. Herein, we investigated the molecular mechanisms underlying these
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The silkworm Bombyx mori is an economically important species. White muscardine caused by Beauveria bassiana is the main fungal disease in sericulture, and understanding the silkworm responses to B. bassiana infection is of particular interest. Herein, we investigated the molecular mechanisms underlying these responses in two silkworm strains Haoyue (HY, sensitive to B. bassiana) and Kang 8 (K8, resistant to B. bassiana) using an RNA-seq approach. For each strain, three biological replicates for immersion treatment, two replicates for injection treatment and three untreated controls were collected to generate 16 libraries for sequencing. Differentially expressed genes (DEGs) between treated samples and untreated controls, and between the two silkworm strains, were identified. DEGs and the enriched Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathways of the two strains exhibited an obvious difference. Several genes encoding cuticle proteins, serine proteinase inhibitors (SPI) and antimicrobial peptides (AMP) and the drug metabolism pathway involved in toxin detoxification were considered to be related to the resistance of K8 to B. bassiana. These results revealed insight into the resistance and susceptibility of two silkworm strains against B. bassiana infection and provided a roadmap for silkworm molecular breeding to enhance its resistance to B. bassiana. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessArticle Proteomic Analysis of Mitochondria-Enriched Fraction Isolated from the Frontal Cortex and Hippocampus of Apolipoprotein E Knockout Mice Treated with Alda-1, an Activator of Mitochondrial Aldehyde Dehydrogenase (ALDH2)
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 435; doi:10.3390/ijms18020435
Received: 9 December 2016 / Revised: 25 January 2017 / Accepted: 31 January 2017 / Published: 17 February 2017
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Abstract
The role of different genotypes of apolipoprotein E (apoE) in the etiology of Alzheimer’s disease is widely recognized. It has been shown that altered functioning of apoE may promote 4-hydroxynonenal modification of mitochondrial proteins, which may result in mitochondrial dysfunction, aggravation of oxidative
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The role of different genotypes of apolipoprotein E (apoE) in the etiology of Alzheimer’s disease is widely recognized. It has been shown that altered functioning of apoE may promote 4-hydroxynonenal modification of mitochondrial proteins, which may result in mitochondrial dysfunction, aggravation of oxidative stress, and neurodegeneration. Mitochondrial aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH2) is an enzyme considered to perform protective function in mitochondria by the detoxification of the end products of lipid peroxidation, such as 4-hydroxynonenal and other reactive aldehydes. The goal of our study was to apply a differential proteomics approach in concert with molecular and morphological techniques to elucidate the changes in the frontal cortex and hippocampus of apolipoprotein E knockout (apoE−/−) mice upon treatment with Alda-1—a small molecular weight activator of ALDH2. Despite the lack of significant morphological changes in the brain of apoE−/− mice as compared to age-matched wild type animals, the proteomic and molecular approach revealed many changes in the expression of genes and proteins, indicating the impairment of energy metabolism, neuroplasticity, and neurogenesis in brains of apoE−/− mice. Importantly, prolonged treatment of apoE−/− mice with Alda-1 led to the beneficial changes in the expression of genes and proteins related to neuroplasticity and mitochondrial function. The pattern of alterations implies mitoprotective action of Alda-1, however, the accurate functional consequences of the revealed changes require further research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessArticle Developing and Evaluating a Flexible Wireless Microcoil Array Based Integrated Interface for Epidural Cortical Stimulation
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 335; doi:10.3390/ijms18020335
Received: 6 December 2016 / Revised: 26 January 2017 / Accepted: 31 January 2017 / Published: 5 February 2017
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Abstract
Stroke leads to serious long-term disability. Electrical epidural cortical stimulation has made significant improvements in stroke rehabilitation therapy. We developed a preliminary wireless implantable passive interface, which consists of a stimulating surface electrode, receiving coil, and single flexible passive demodulated circuit printed by
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Stroke leads to serious long-term disability. Electrical epidural cortical stimulation has made significant improvements in stroke rehabilitation therapy. We developed a preliminary wireless implantable passive interface, which consists of a stimulating surface electrode, receiving coil, and single flexible passive demodulated circuit printed by flexible printed circuit (FPC) technique and output pulse voltage stimulus by inductively coupling an external circuit. The wireless implantable board was implanted in cats’ unilateral epidural space for electrical stimulation of the primary visual cortex (V1) while the evoked responses were recorded on the contralateral V1 using a needle electrode. The wireless implantable board output stable monophasic voltage stimuli. The amplitude of the monophasic voltage output could be adjusted by controlling the voltage of the transmitter circuit within a range of 5–20 V. In acute experiment, cortico-cortical evoked potential (CCEP) response was recorded on the contralateral V1. The amplitude of N2 in CCEP was modulated by adjusting the stimulation intensity of the wireless interface. These results demonstrated that a wireless interface based on a microcoil array can offer a valuable tool for researchers to explore electrical stimulation in research and the dura mater-electrode interface can effectively transmit electrical stimulation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neurological Injuries’ Monitoring, Tracking and Treatment 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Advanced Glycation End Products Inhibit the Proliferation of Human Umbilical Vein Endothelial Cells by Inhibiting Cathepsin D
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 436; doi:10.3390/ijms18020436
Received: 28 October 2016 / Revised: 12 January 2017 / Accepted: 13 February 2017 / Published: 17 February 2017
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Abstract
We aimed to investigate the effect of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) on the proliferation and migration ability of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). Cell proliferation was detected by methyl thiazolyl tetrazolium (MTT) assay, real-time cell analyzer and 5-Ethynyl-2′-deoxyuridine (EdU) staining. Cell
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We aimed to investigate the effect of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) on the proliferation and migration ability of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). Cell proliferation was detected by methyl thiazolyl tetrazolium (MTT) assay, real-time cell analyzer and 5-Ethynyl-2′-deoxyuridine (EdU) staining. Cell migration was detected by wound-healing and transwell assay. AGEs significantly inhibited the proliferation and migration of HUVECs in a time-and dose-dependent way. Western blotting revealed that AGEs dramatically increased the expression of microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3 (LC3) II/I and p62. Immunofluorescence of p62 and acridine orange staining revealed that AGEs significantly increased the expression of p62 and the accumulation of autophagic vacuoles, respectively. Chloroquine (CQ) could further promote the expression of LC3 II/I and p62, increase the accumulation of autophagic vacuoles and promote cell injury induced by AGEs. In addition, AGEs reduced cathepsin D (CTSD) expression in a time-dependent way. Overexpression of wild-type CTSD significantly decreased the ratio of LC 3 II/I as well as p62 accumulation induced by AGEs, but overexpression of catalytically inactive mutant CTSD had no such effects. Only overexpression of wild-type CTSD could restore the proliferation of HUVECs inhibited by AGEs. However, overexpression of both wild-type CTSD and catalytically inactive mutant CTSD could promote the migration of HUVECs inhibited by AGEs. Collectively, our study found that AGEs inhibited the proliferation and migration in HUVECs and promoted autophagic flux, which in turn played a protective role against AGEs-induced cell injury. CTSD, in need of its catalytic activity, may promote proliferation in AGEs-treated HUVECs independent of the autophagy-lysosome pathway. Meanwhile, CTSD could improve the migration of AGEs-treated HUVECs regardless of its enzymatic activity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessArticle Exogenous PTHrP Repairs the Damaged Fracture Healing of PTHrP+/− Mice and Accelerates Fracture Healing of Wild Mice
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 337; doi:10.3390/ijms18020337
Received: 18 December 2016 / Revised: 29 January 2017 / Accepted: 1 February 2017 / Published: 6 February 2017
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Abstract
Bone fracture healing is a complicated physiological regenerative process initiated in response to injury and is similar to bone development. To demonstrate whether an exogenous supply of parathyroid hormone–related protein (PTHrP) helps in bone fracture healing, closed mid-diaphyseal femur fractures were created and
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Bone fracture healing is a complicated physiological regenerative process initiated in response to injury and is similar to bone development. To demonstrate whether an exogenous supply of parathyroid hormone–related protein (PTHrP) helps in bone fracture healing, closed mid-diaphyseal femur fractures were created and stabilized with intramedullary pins in eight-week-old wild-type (WT) PTHrP+/+ and PTHrP+/− mice. After administering PTHrP for two weeks, callus tissue properties were analyzed at one, two, and four weeks post-fracture (PF) by various methods. Bone formation–related genes and protein expression levels were evaluated by real-time reverse transcriptase–polymerase chain reaction and Western blots. At two weeks PF, mineral density of callus, bony callus areas, mRNA levels of alkaline phosphatase (ALP), type I collagen, Runt-related transcription factor 2 (Runx-2), and protein levels of Runx-2 and insulin-like growth factor-1 decreased in PTHrP+/− mice compared with WT mice. At four weeks PF, total collagen-positive bony callus areas, osteoblast number, ALP-positive areas, and type I collagen-positive areas all decreased in PTHrP+/− mice. At both two and four weeks PF, tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase–positive osteoclast number and surface decreased a little in PTHrP+/− mice. The study indicates that exogenous PTHrP provided by subcutaneous injection could redress impaired bone fracture healing, leading to mutation of activated PTHrP by influencing callus areas, endochondral bone formation, osteoblastic bone formation, and bone turnover. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Musculoskeletal Diseases Therapy)
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Open AccessArticle Effects of Remote Ischemic Preconditioning on Heme Oxygenase-1 Expression and Cutaneous Wound Repair
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 438; doi:10.3390/ijms18020438
Received: 20 December 2016 / Revised: 6 February 2017 / Accepted: 13 February 2017 / Published: 17 February 2017
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Abstract
Skin wounds may lead to scar formation and impaired functionality. Remote ischemic preconditioning (RIPC) can induce the anti-inflammatory enzyme heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) and protect against tissue injury. We aim to improve cutaneous wound repair by RIPC treatment via induction of HO-1. RIPC was
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Skin wounds may lead to scar formation and impaired functionality. Remote ischemic preconditioning (RIPC) can induce the anti-inflammatory enzyme heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) and protect against tissue injury. We aim to improve cutaneous wound repair by RIPC treatment via induction of HO-1. RIPC was applied to HO-1-luc transgenic mice and HO-1 promoter activity and mRNA expression in skin and several other organs were determined in real-time. In parallel, RIPC was applied directly or 24h prior to excisional wounding in mice to investigate the early and late protective effects of RIPC on cutaneous wound repair, respectively. HO-1 promoter activity was significantly induced on the dorsal side and locally in the kidneys following RIPC treatment. Next, we investigated the origin of this RIPC-induced HO-1 promoter activity and demonstrated increased mRNA in the ligated muscle, heart and kidneys, but not in the skin. RIPC did not change HO-1 mRNA and protein levels in the wound 7 days after cutaneous injury. Both early and late RIPC did not accelerate wound closure nor affect collagen deposition. RIPC induces HO-1 expression in several organs, but not the skin, and did not improve excisional wound repair, suggesting that the skin is insensitive to RIPC-mediated protection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Wound Repair and Regeneration)
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Open AccessArticle Serum Metabolomic Profiling Identifies Characterization of Non-Obstructive Azoospermic Men
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 238; doi:10.3390/ijms18020238
Received: 9 November 2016 / Revised: 10 January 2017 / Accepted: 12 January 2017 / Published: 25 January 2017
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Abstract
Male infertility is considered a common health problem, and non-obstructive azoospermia with unclear pathogenesis is one of the most challenging tasks for clinicians. The objective of this study was to investigate the differential serum metabolic pattern in non-obstructive azoospermic men and to determine
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Male infertility is considered a common health problem, and non-obstructive azoospermia with unclear pathogenesis is one of the most challenging tasks for clinicians. The objective of this study was to investigate the differential serum metabolic pattern in non-obstructive azoospermic men and to determine potential biomarkers related to spermatogenic dysfunction. Serum samples from patients with non-obstructive azoospermia (n = 22) and healthy controls (n = 31) were examined using high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS/MS). Serum metabolomic profiling could differentiate non-obstructive azoospermic patients from healthy control subjects. A total of 24 metabolites were screened and identified as potential markers, many of which are involved in energy production, oxidative stress and cell apoptosis in spermatogenesis. Moreover, the results showed that various metabolic pathways, including d-glutamine and d-glutamate metabolism, taurine and hypotaurine metabolism, pyruvate metabolism, the citrate cycle and alanine, aspartate and glutamate metabolism, were disrupted in patients with non-obstructive azoospermia. Our results indicated that the serum metabolic disorders may contribute to the etiology of non-obstructive azoospermia. This study suggested that serum metabolomics could identify unique metabolic patterns of non-obstructive azoospermia and provide novel insights into the pathogenesis underlying male infertility. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Research on Urology)
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Open AccessArticle Zinc Transporter 3 (ZnT3) in the Enteric Nervous System of the Porcine Ileum in Physiological Conditions and during Experimental Inflammation
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 338; doi:10.3390/ijms18020338
Received: 25 November 2016 / Revised: 28 January 2017 / Accepted: 3 February 2017 / Published: 7 February 2017
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Abstract
Zinc transporter 3 (ZnT3) is a member of the solute-linked carrier 30 (SLC 30) zinc transporter family. It is closely linked to the nervous system, where it takes part in the transport of zinc ions from the cytoplasm to the synaptic vesicles. ZnT3
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Zinc transporter 3 (ZnT3) is a member of the solute-linked carrier 30 (SLC 30) zinc transporter family. It is closely linked to the nervous system, where it takes part in the transport of zinc ions from the cytoplasm to the synaptic vesicles. ZnT3 has also been observed in the enteric nervous system (ENS), but its reactions in response to pathological factors remain unknown. This study, based on the triple immunofluorescence technique, describes changes in ZnT3-like immunoreactive (ZnT3-LI) enteric neurons in the porcine ileum, caused by chemically-induced inflammation. The inflammatory process led to a clear increase in the percentage of neurons immunoreactive to ZnT3 in all “kinds” of intramural enteric plexuses, i.e., myenteric (MP), outer submucous (OSP) and inner submucous (ISP) plexuses. Moreover, a wide range of other active substances was noted in ZnT3-LI neurons under physiological and pathological conditions, and changes in neurochemical characterisation of ZnT3+ cells in response to inflammation depended on the “kind” of enteric plexus. The obtained results show that ZnT3 is present in the ENS in a relatively numerous and diversified neuronal population, not only in physiological conditions, but also during inflammation. The reasons for the observed changes are not clear; they may be connected with the functions of zinc ions and their homeostasis disturbances in pathological processes. On the other hand, they may be due to adaptive and/or neuroprotective processes within the pathologically altered gastrointestinal tract. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Zinc Signaling in Physiology and Pathogenesis)
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Open AccessArticle Determination of VEGFR-2 (KDR) 604A>G Polymorphism in Pancreatic Disorders
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 439; doi:10.3390/ijms18020439
Received: 15 December 2016 / Accepted: 3 February 2017 / Published: 17 February 2017
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Abstract
Pancreatic disorders have a high prevalence worldwide. Despite the fact that screening methods became more effective and the knowledge we have nowadays about pancreatic diseases has enhanced, their incidence remains high. Our purpose was to determine whether single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) of VEGFR-2/KDR
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Pancreatic disorders have a high prevalence worldwide. Despite the fact that screening methods became more effective and the knowledge we have nowadays about pancreatic diseases has enhanced, their incidence remains high. Our purpose was to determine whether single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) of VEGFR-2/KDR (vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 2/kinase insert domain receptor) influences susceptibility to develop pancreatic pathology. Genomic DNA was extracted from blood samples collected from patients diagnosed with acute pancreatitis (n = 110), chronic pancreatitis (n = 25), pancreatic cancer (n = 82) and healthy controls (n = 232). VEGFR-2 (KDR) 604A>G (rs2071559) polymorphism frequency was determined with TaqMan allelic discrimination assays. Statistical assessment was performed by associating genetic polymorphism with clinical and pathological data. In both pancreatic disorders and healthy control groups the polymorphism we studied was in Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. Association between increased risk for pancreatic disorders and studied polymorphism was statistically significant. KDR 604AG and AG + GG genotypes were more prevalent in acute pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer patients than in controls. These genotypes influence disease development in a low rate. No association was found between chronic pancreatitis and KDR 604AG and AG + GG genotypes. In Romanian cohort, we found an association between the KDR 604A→G polymorphism and acute pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer. Carriers of the -604G variant allele were more frequent among acute pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer than among controls, suggesting that KDR 604G allele may confer an increased risk for these diseases. In the future, more extensive studies on larger groups are necessary, in order to clarify the role of VEGFR2 polymorphisms in pancreatic pathology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pancreatic Disorders)
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Open AccessArticle DFT Study of the Structure, Reactivity, Natural Bond Orbital and Hyperpolarizability of Thiazole Azo Dyes
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 239; doi:10.3390/ijms18020239
Received: 4 November 2016 / Accepted: 13 January 2017 / Published: 1 February 2017
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Abstract
The structure, reactivity, natural bond orbital (NBO), linear and nonlinear optical (NLO) properties of three thiazole azo dyes (A, B and C) were monitored by applying B3LYP, CAM-B3LYP and ωB97XD functionals with 6-311++G** and aug-cc-pvdz basis sets. The geometrical parameters,dipolemoments,HOMO-LUMO(highest occupied molecular orbital,lowest
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The structure, reactivity, natural bond orbital (NBO), linear and nonlinear optical (NLO) properties of three thiazole azo dyes (A, B and C) were monitored by applying B3LYP, CAM-B3LYP and ωB97XD functionals with 6-311++G** and aug-cc-pvdz basis sets. The geometrical parameters,dipolemoments,HOMO-LUMO(highest occupied molecular orbital,lowest unoccupied molecular orbital) energy gaps, absorption wavelengths and total hyperpolarizabilities were investigated in carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) chloroform (CHCl3), dichloromethane (CH2Cl2) and dimethlysulphoxide (DMSO). The donor methoxyphenyl group deviates from planarity with the thiazole azo moiety by ca. 38◦; while the acceptor dicyanovinyl, indandione and dicyanovinylindanone groups diverge by ca. 6◦. The HOMOs for the three dyes are identical. They spread over the methoxyphenyl donor moiety, the thiazole and benzene rings as π-bonding orbitals. The LUMOs are shaped up by the nature of the acceptor moieties. The LUMOs of the A, B and C dyes extend over the indandione, malononitrile and dicyanovinylindanone acceptor moieties, respectively, as π-antibonding orbitals. The HOMO-LUMO splittings showed that Dye C is much more reactive than dyes A and B. Compared to dyes A and B, Dye C yielded a longer maximum absorption wavelength because of the stabilization of its LUMOs relative to those of the other two. The three dyes show solvatochromism accompanied by significant increases in hyperpolarizability. The enhancement of the total hyperpolarizability of C compared to those of A and B is due to the cumulative action of the long π-conjugation of the indanone ring and the stronger electron-withdrawing ability of the dicyanovinyl moiety that form the dicyanovinylindanone acceptor group. These findings are facilitated by a natural bond orbital (NBO) technique. The very high total hyperpolarizabilities of the three dyes define their potent nonlinear optical (NLO) behaviour. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Chemical Bond and Bonding)
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Open AccessArticle High Specific Selectivity and Membrane-Active Mechanism of Synthetic Cationic Hybrid Antimicrobial Peptides Based on the Peptide FV7
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 339; doi:10.3390/ijms18020339
Received: 30 December 2016 / Revised: 29 January 2017 / Accepted: 1 February 2017 / Published: 6 February 2017
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Abstract
Hybrid peptides integrating different functional domains of peptides have many advantages, such as remarkable antimicrobial activity, lower hemolysis and ideal cell selectivity, compared with natural antimicrobial peptides. FV7 (FRIRVRV-NH2), a consensus amphiphilic sequence was identified as being analogous to host defense
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Hybrid peptides integrating different functional domains of peptides have many advantages, such as remarkable antimicrobial activity, lower hemolysis and ideal cell selectivity, compared with natural antimicrobial peptides. FV7 (FRIRVRV-NH2), a consensus amphiphilic sequence was identified as being analogous to host defense peptides. In this study, we designed a series of hybrid peptides FV7-LL-37 (17–29) (FV-LL), FV7-magainin 2 (9–21) (FV-MA) and FV7-cecropin A (1–8) (FV-CE) by combining the FV7 sequence with the small functional sequences LL-37 (17–29) (LL), magainin 2 (9–21) (MA) and cecropin A (1–8) (CE) which all come from well-described natural peptides. The results demonstrated that the synthetic hybrid peptides, in particular FV-LL, had potent antibacterial activities over a wide range of Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria with lower hemolytic activity than other peptides. Furthermore, fluorescent spectroscopy indicated that the hybrid peptide FV-LL exhibited marked membrane destruction by inducing outer and inner bacterial membrane permeabilization, while scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) demonstrated that FV-LL damaged membrane integrity by disrupting the bacterial membrane. Inhibiting biofilm formation assays also showed that FV-LL had similar anti-biofilm activity compared with the functional peptide sequence FV7. Synthetic cationic hybrid peptides based on FV7 could provide new models for combining different functional domains and demonstrate effective avenues to screen for novel antimicrobial agents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial Polymers 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Effect of Silver Diamine Fluoride and Potassium Iodide Treatment on Secondary Caries Prevention and Tooth Discolouration in Cervical Glass Ionomer Cement Restoration
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 340; doi:10.3390/ijms18020340
Received: 10 January 2017 / Revised: 29 January 2017 / Accepted: 31 January 2017 / Published: 6 February 2017
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Abstract
This study investigated the effect of silver diamine fluoride (SDF) and potassium iodide (KI) treatment on secondary caries prevention and tooth discolouration in glass ionomer cement (GIC) restoration. Cervical GIC restorations were done on 30 premolars with: Group 1, SDF + KI; Group
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This study investigated the effect of silver diamine fluoride (SDF) and potassium iodide (KI) treatment on secondary caries prevention and tooth discolouration in glass ionomer cement (GIC) restoration. Cervical GIC restorations were done on 30 premolars with: Group 1, SDF + KI; Group 2, SDF (positive control); Group 3, no treatment (negative control). After cariogenic biofilm challenge, the demineralisation of dentine adjacent to the restoration was evaluated using micro-computed tomography (micro-CT) and Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy. The colour of dentine adjacent to the restoration was assessed using CIELAB system at different time points. Total colour change (∆E) was calculated and was visible if ∆E > 3.7. Micro-CT showed the outer lesion depths for Groups 1, 2 and 3 were 91 ± 7 µm, 80 ± 7 µm and 119 ± 8 µm, respectively (p < 0.001; Group 2 < Group 1 < Group 3). FTIR found that there was a significant difference in amide I-to-hydrogen phosphate ratio among the three groups (p < 0.001; Group 2 < Group 1 < Group 3). ∆E of Groups 1, 2 and 3 after biofilm challenge were 22.5 ± 4.9, 70.2 ± 8.3 and 2.9 ± 0.9, respectively (p < 0.001; Group 3 < Group 1 < Group 2). SDF + KI treatment reduced secondary caries formation on GIC restoration, but it was not as effective as SDF treatment alone. Moreover, a perceptible staining on the restoration margin was observed, but the intensity of discolouration was less than that with solely SDF treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Bioinorganic Chemistry)
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Open AccessArticle Polymorphisms of Dopamine Receptor Genes and Risk of L-Dopa–Induced Dyskinesia in Parkinson’s Disease
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 242; doi:10.3390/ijms18020242
Received: 31 October 2016 / Revised: 11 January 2017 / Accepted: 16 January 2017 / Published: 24 January 2017
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Abstract
L-dopa–induced dyskinesia (LID) is a frequent motor complication of Parkinson’s disease (PD), associated with a negative prognosis. Previous studies showed an association between dopamine receptor (DR) gene (DR) variants and LID, the results of which have not been confirmed. The present
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L-dopa–induced dyskinesia (LID) is a frequent motor complication of Parkinson’s disease (PD), associated with a negative prognosis. Previous studies showed an association between dopamine receptor (DR) gene (DR) variants and LID, the results of which have not been confirmed. The present study is aimed to determine whether genetic differences of DR are associated with LID in a small but well-characterized cohort of PD patients. To this end we enrolled 100 PD subjects, 50 with and 50 without LID, matched for age, gender, disease duration and dopaminergic medication in a case-control study. We conducted polymerase chain reaction for single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) in both D1-like (DRD1A48G; DRD1C62T and DRD5T798C) and D2-like DR (DRD2G2137A, DRD2C957T, DRD3G25A, DRD3G712C, DRD4C616G and DRD4nR VNTR 48bp) analyzed genomic DNA. Our results showed that PD patients carrying allele A at DRD3G3127A had an increased risk of LID (OR 4.9; 95% CI 1.7–13.9; p = 0.004). The present findings may provide valuable information for personalizing pharmacological therapy in PD patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Human Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms and Disease Diagnostics)
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Open AccessArticle FKBP51 Immunohistochemical Expression: A New Prognostic Biomarker for OSCC?
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 443; doi:10.3390/ijms18020443
Received: 29 December 2016 / Revised: 3 February 2017 / Accepted: 9 February 2017 / Published: 18 February 2017
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Abstract
Up-to-date, several molecular markers of prognosis have been studied in Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma (OSCC), but none entered in the clinical setting. Therapy of OSCC tumors mainly relies on surgery, radiotherapy and partially on chemotherapy; there is an urgent need for biomarkers able
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Up-to-date, several molecular markers of prognosis have been studied in Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma (OSCC), but none entered in the clinical setting. Therapy of OSCC tumors mainly relies on surgery, radiotherapy and partially on chemotherapy; there is an urgent need for biomarkers able to better stratify OSCC patients’ risk to address targeted therapeutic strategies. The role of immune response in the pathogenesis and biological behavior of OSCC has been investigated by several authors, and promising results have been obtained with immune checkpoint inhibitors. We already investigated the role of the immune modulator FK506-binding protein 51 (FKBP51), a FK506-binding immunophilin, in cutaneous melanoma biology, and its expression in several human solid tumors. In the present study, we aimed to assess the value of FKBP51 expression in OSCC tumor cells as a marker of outcome. We collected clinical data from 72 patients who underwent surgery for Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC) of the tongue, floor, lips and palate. FKBP51 expression was assessed by immunohistochemistry on paraffin-embedded tumor tissues. In addition, we evaluated the human papillomavirus (HPV) status of primary tumors by immunohistochemistry, viral subtyping and In Situ Hybridization (ISH) assay. We found that high FKBP51-expressing tumors characterized the OSCCs with the worst prognosis: the high immunohistochemical expression of FKBP51 associated with death occurring within five years from the diagnosis with a sensitivity of 88.46% and a specificity of 91.67%. The estimated positive predictive value of the test was 88.45% and negative predictive value 91.67%. We tested FKBP51 mRNA presence, by RT-PCR assay, in a selected series of OSCC tumors, and we found that mRNA correlated well to the protein expression and to the clinical outcome. Applying the Bayes formula, we estimated an 88% probability of dying within five years from the diagnosis of OSCC patients with a high FKBP51 immunohistochemical (IHC) test result (>51% of FKBP51 positive tumor cells). On the basis of our analysis, we propose tumor tissue expression of FKBP51 protein as a reliable prognostic marker for OSCC tumors. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Effects of a Combination of Berberis aristata, Silybum marianum and Monacolin on Lipid Profile in Subjects at Low Cardiovascular Risk; A Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Trial
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 343; doi:10.3390/ijms18020343
Received: 5 November 2016 / Revised: 18 January 2017 / Accepted: 20 January 2017 / Published: 7 February 2017
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Abstract
The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of an anti-hypercholesterolemic agent containing Berberis aristata, Silybum marianum and monacolin K and KA in a sample of Caucasian patients at low cardiovascular risk according to Framingham score. The primary
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The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of an anti-hypercholesterolemic agent containing Berberis aristata, Silybum marianum and monacolin K and KA in a sample of Caucasian patients at low cardiovascular risk according to Framingham score. The primary outcome was to evaluate the effects of this nutraceutical combination on lipid profile; the secondary outcome was to evaluate the effect on some inflammatory markers, in particular high sensitivity C-reactive protein and tumor necrosis factor-α interleukin-6. One hundred and forty-three patients were randomized to placebo or Berberol® K, once a day, during the dinner, for 3 months, in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. We recorded a significant reduction of fasting plasma glucose with Berberol® K compared to placebo (−12.2%, p < 0.05). Moreover, we recorded an increase of fasting plasma insulin with Berberol® K both compared to baseline and to placebo (+9.9%, p < 0.05). Accordingly, the homeostasis model assessment (HOMA) index obtained after treatment with Berberol® K was lower than the one in the placebo group (−2.8%, p < 0.05). No variations of lipid profile were observed with placebo, while there was a significant decrease of total cholesterol (−20.5%, p < 0.05), triglycerides (−17.7%, p < 0.05), and low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholestero (−27.8%, p < 0.05) with Berberol® K, compared to placebo. There was a decrease of high sensitivity C-reactive protein (−30.8%, p < 0.05), and interleukin-6 (−25.0%, p < 0.05), with Berberol® K compared to placebo. In conclusion, combining different hypocholesterolemic nutraceutical agents such as Berberis aristata, Silybum marianum and monacolin K and KA could be effective and safe to obtain a reduction of lipid profile and an improvement of inflammatory parameters. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Bioactives and Nutraceuticals)
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Open AccessArticle Vegfa Impacts Early Myocardium Development in Zebrafish
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 444; doi:10.3390/ijms18020444
Received: 14 January 2017 / Revised: 30 January 2017 / Accepted: 8 February 2017 / Published: 21 February 2017
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Abstract
Vascular endothelial growth factor A (Vegfa) signaling regulates cardiovascular development. However, the cellular mechanisms of Vegfa signaling in early cardiogenesis remain poorly understood. The present study aimed to understand the differential functions and mechanisms of Vegfa signaling in cardiac development. A loss-of-function approach
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Vascular endothelial growth factor A (Vegfa) signaling regulates cardiovascular development. However, the cellular mechanisms of Vegfa signaling in early cardiogenesis remain poorly understood. The present study aimed to understand the differential functions and mechanisms of Vegfa signaling in cardiac development. A loss-of-function approach was utilized to study the effect of Vegfa signaling in cardiogenesis. Both morphants and mutants for vegfaa display defects in cardiac looping and chamber formation, especially the ventricle. Vegfa regulates the heart morphogenesis in a dose-dependent manner. Furthermore, the initial fusion of the bilateral myocardium population is delayed rather than endocardium. The results demonstrate that Vegfa signaling plays a direct impact on myocardium fusion, indicating that it is the initial cause of the heart defects. The heart morphogenesis is regulated by Vegfa in a dose-dependent manner, and later endocardium defects may be secondary to impaired myocardium–endocardium crosstalk. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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Open AccessArticle Rett Syndrome: A Focus on Gut Microbiota
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 344; doi:10.3390/ijms18020344
Received: 15 December 2016 / Revised: 25 January 2017 / Accepted: 27 January 2017 / Published: 7 February 2017
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Abstract
Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder affecting 1 in 10,000 live female births. Changes in microbiota composition, as observed in other neurological disorders such as autism spectrum disorders, may account for several symptoms typically associated with RTT. We studied the relationship
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Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder affecting 1 in 10,000 live female births. Changes in microbiota composition, as observed in other neurological disorders such as autism spectrum disorders, may account for several symptoms typically associated with RTT. We studied the relationship between disease phenotypes and microbiome by analyzing diet, gut microbiota, and short-chain fatty acid (SCFA) production. We enrolled eight RTT patients and 10 age- and sex-matched healthy women, all without dietary restrictions. The microbiota was characterized by 16S rRNA gene sequencing, and SCFAs concentration was determined by gas chromatographic analysis. The RTT microbiota showed a lower α diversity, an enrichment in Bacteroidaceae, Clostridium spp., and Sutterella spp., and a slight depletion in Ruminococcaceae. Fecal SCFA concentrations were similar, but RTT samples showed slightly higher concentrations of butyrate and propionate, and significant higher levels in branched-chain fatty acids. Daily caloric intake was similar in the two groups, but macronutrient analysis showed a higher protein content in RTT diets. Microbial function prediction suggested in RTT subjects an increased number of microbial genes encoding for propionate and butyrate, and amino acid metabolism. A full understanding of these critical features could offer new, specific strategies for managing RTT-associated symptoms, such as dietary intervention or pre/probiotic supplementation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Pathology, Diagnostics, and Therapeutics)
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Open AccessArticle Micro-Computed Tomography Detection of Gold Nanoparticle-Labelled Mesenchymal Stem Cells in the Rat Subretinal Layer
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 345; doi:10.3390/ijms18020345
Received: 11 November 2016 / Revised: 9 December 2016 / Accepted: 21 December 2016 / Published: 8 February 2017
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Abstract
Mesenchymal stem cells are widely used in many pre-clinical and clinical settings. Despite advances in molecular technology; the migration and homing activities of these cells in in vivo systems are not well understood. Labelling mesenchymal stem cells with gold nanoparticles has no cytotoxic
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Mesenchymal stem cells are widely used in many pre-clinical and clinical settings. Despite advances in molecular technology; the migration and homing activities of these cells in in vivo systems are not well understood. Labelling mesenchymal stem cells with gold nanoparticles has no cytotoxic effect and may offer suitable indications for stem cell tracking. Here, we report a simple protocol to label mesenchymal stem cells using 80 nm gold nanoparticles. Once the cells and particles were incubated together for 24 h, the labelled products were injected into the rat subretinal layer. Micro-computed tomography was then conducted on the 15th and 30th day post-injection to track the movement of these cells, as visualized by an area of hyperdensity from the coronal section images of the rat head. In addition, we confirmed the cellular uptake of the gold nanoparticles by the mesenchymal stem cells using transmission electron microscopy. As opposed to other methods, the current protocol provides a simple, less labour-intensive and more efficient labelling mechanism for real-time cell tracking. Finally, we discuss the potential manipulations of gold nanoparticles in stem cells for cell replacement and cancer therapy in ocular disorders or diseases. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Identifying the Long-Term Role of Inducible Nitric Oxide Synthase after Contusive Spinal Cord Injury Using a Transgenic Mouse Model
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 245; doi:10.3390/ijms18020245
Received: 5 December 2016 / Revised: 5 January 2017 / Accepted: 15 January 2017 / Published: 25 January 2017
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Abstract
Inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) is a potent mediator of oxidative stress during neuroinflammation triggered by neurotrauma or neurodegeneration. We previously demonstrated that acute iNOS inhibition attenuated iNOS levels and promoted neuroprotection and functional recovery after spinal cord injury (SCI). The present study
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Inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) is a potent mediator of oxidative stress during neuroinflammation triggered by neurotrauma or neurodegeneration. We previously demonstrated that acute iNOS inhibition attenuated iNOS levels and promoted neuroprotection and functional recovery after spinal cord injury (SCI). The present study investigated the effects of chronic iNOS ablation after SCI using inos-null mice. iNOS−/− knockout and wild-type (WT) control mice underwent a moderate thoracic (T8) contusive SCI. Locomotor function was assessed weekly, using the Basso Mouse Scale (BMS), and at the endpoint (six weeks), by footprint analysis. At the endpoint, the volume of preserved white and gray matter, as well as the number of dorsal column axons and perilesional blood vessels rostral to the injury, were quantified. At weeks two and three after SCI, iNOS−/− mice exhibited a significant locomotor improvement compared to WT controls, although a sustained improvement was not observed during later weeks. At the endpoint, iNOS−/− mice showed significantly less preserved white and gray matter, as well as fewer dorsal column axons and perilesional blood vessels, compared to WT controls. While short-term antagonism of iNOS provides histological and functional benefits, its long-term ablation after SCI may be deleterious, blocking protective or reparative processes important for angiogenesis and tissue preservation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neuroprotective Strategies 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Time, Concentration, and pH-Dependent Transport and Uptake of Anthocyanins in a Human Gastric Epithelial (NCI-N87) Cell Line
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 446; doi:10.3390/ijms18020446
Received: 30 December 2016 / Revised: 13 February 2017 / Accepted: 16 February 2017 / Published: 18 February 2017
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Abstract
Anthocyanins are the largest class of water soluble plant pigments and a common part of the human diet. They may have many potential health benefits, including antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, and cardioprotective activities. However, anthocyanin metabolism is not well understood. Studies suggest that anthocyanins
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Anthocyanins are the largest class of water soluble plant pigments and a common part of the human diet. They may have many potential health benefits, including antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, and cardioprotective activities. However, anthocyanin metabolism is not well understood. Studies suggest that anthocyanins absorption may occur in the stomach, in which the acidic pH favors anthocyanin stability. A gastric epithelial cell line (NCI-N87) has been used to study the behavior of anthocyanins at a pH range of 3.0–7.4. This work examines the effects of time (0–3 h), concentration (50–1500 µM), and pH (3.0, 5.0, 7.4) on the transport and uptake of anthocyanins using NCI-N87 cells. Anthocyanins were transported from the apical to basolateral side of NCI-N87 cells in time and dose dependent manners. Over the treatment time of 3 h the rate of transport increased, especially with higher anthocyanin concentrations. The non-linear rate of transport may suggest an active mechanism for the transport of anthocyanins across the NCI-N87 monolayer. At apical pH 3.0, higher anthocyanin transport was observed compared to pH 5.0 and 7.4. Reduced transport of anthocyanins was found to occur at apical pH 5.0. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Anthocyanins)
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Open AccessArticle Phenylarsine Oxide Can Induce the Arsenite-Resistance Mutant PML Protein Solubility Changes
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 247; doi:10.3390/ijms18020247
Received: 4 January 2017 / Revised: 17 January 2017 / Accepted: 18 January 2017 / Published: 25 January 2017
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (3879 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Arsenic trioxide (As2O3) has recently become one of the most effective drugs for treatment of patient with acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL), and its molecular mechanism has also been largely investigated. However, it has been reported that As2O
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Arsenic trioxide (As2O3) has recently become one of the most effective drugs for treatment of patient with acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL), and its molecular mechanism has also been largely investigated. However, it has been reported that As2O3 resistant patients are frequently found in relapsed APL after consolidation therapy, which is due to the point mutations in B-box type 2 motifs of promyelocytic leukemia (PML) gene. In the present study, we for the first time establish whether organic arsenic species phenylarsine oxide (PAO) could induce the mutant PML-IV (A216V) protein solubility changes and degradation. Here, three different PML protein variants (i.e., PML-IV, PML-V and mutant PML-A216V) were overexpressed in HEK293T cells and then exposed to PAO in time- and dose-dependent manners. Interestingly, PAO is found to have potential effect on induction of mutant PML-IV (A216V) protein solubility changes and degradation, but no appreciable effects were found following exposure to high concentrations of iAsIII, dimethylarsinous acid (DMAIII) and adriamycin (doxorubicin), even though they cause cell death. Our current data strongly indicate that PAO has good effects on the mutant PML protein solubility changes, and it may be helpful for improving the therapeutic strategies for arsenic-resistant APL treatments in the near future. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Anti-Inflammatory Activity of Sanghuangporus sanghuang Mycelium
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 347; doi:10.3390/ijms18020347
Received: 29 November 2016 / Revised: 18 January 2017 / Accepted: 20 January 2017 / Published: 7 February 2017
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Abstract
Acute lung injury (ALI) is characterized by inflammation of the lung tissue and oxidative injury caused by excessive accumulation of reactive oxygen species. Studies have suggested that anti-inflammatory or antioxidant agents could be used for the treatment of ALI with a good outcome.
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Acute lung injury (ALI) is characterized by inflammation of the lung tissue and oxidative injury caused by excessive accumulation of reactive oxygen species. Studies have suggested that anti-inflammatory or antioxidant agents could be used for the treatment of ALI with a good outcome. Therefore, our study aimed to test whether the mycelium extract of Sanghuangporus sanghuang (SS-1), believed to exhibit antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, could be used against the excessive inflammatory response associated with lipopolysaccharides (LPS)-induced ALI in mice and to investigate its possible mechanism of action. The experimental results showed that the administration of SS-1 could inhibit LPS-induced inflammation. SS-1 could reduce the number of inflammatory cells, inhibit myeloperoxidase (MPO) activity, regulate the TLR4/PI3K/Akt/mTOR pathway and the signal transduction of NF-κB and MAPK pathways in the lung tissue, and inhibit high mobility group box-1 protein 1 (HNGB1) activity in BALF. In addition, SS-1 could affect the synthesis of antioxidant enzymes Heme oxygenase 1 (HO-1) and Thioredoxin-1 (Trx-1) in the lung tissue and regulate signal transduction in the KRAB-associated protein-1 (KAP1)/nuclear factor erythroid-2-related factor Nrf2/Kelch Like ECH associated Protein 1 (Keap1) pathway. Histological results showed that administration of SS-1 prior to induction could inhibit the large-scale LPS-induced neutrophil infiltration of the lung tissue. Therefore, based on all experimental results, we propose that SS-1 exhibits a protective effect against LPS-induced ALI in mice. The mycelium of S. sanghuang can potentially be used for the treatment or prevention of inflammation-related diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Anti-Inflammatory Agents)
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Open AccessArticle Perindopril Induces TSP-1 Expression in Hypertensive Patients with Endothelial Dysfunction in Chronic Treatment
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 348; doi:10.3390/ijms18020348
Received: 7 December 2016 / Revised: 12 January 2017 / Accepted: 30 January 2017 / Published: 7 February 2017
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Abstract
Thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1) is a potent endogenous inhibitor of both physiological and pathological angiogenesis, widely studied as a target in drug development for treating cancer. Several studies performed in the cardiovascular field on TSP-1 are contradictory, the role of TSP-1 in the physiopathology of
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Thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1) is a potent endogenous inhibitor of both physiological and pathological angiogenesis, widely studied as a target in drug development for treating cancer. Several studies performed in the cardiovascular field on TSP-1 are contradictory, the role of TSP-1 in the physiopathology of cardiovascular disorders (CVDs) being, for the moment, incompletely understood and may be due to the presence of several domains in its structure which can stimulate many cellular receptors. It has been reported to inhibit NO-mediated signaling and to act on the angiogenesis, tissue perfusion, endothelial cell proliferation, and homeostasis, so we aimed to quantify the effect Perindopril has on TSP-1 plasma levels in hypertensive patients with endothelial dysfunction in comparison with other antihypertensive drugs, such as beta blockers, calcium channel blockers, and diuretics, in a chronic treatment. As a conclusion, patients under treatment with Perindopril had increased plasma levels of TSP-1 compared with other hypertensive patients and with the control group. The results of this study confirms the pleiotropic properties of Perindopril: anti-proliferative, anti-inflammatory, with effects showed by quantifying a single biomarker: TSP-1. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Liquid Biopsy for Clinical Application)
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Open AccessArticle Interaction of New-Developed TiO2-Based Photocatalytic Nanoparticles with Pathogenic Microorganisms and Human Dermal and Pulmonary Fibroblasts
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 249; doi:10.3390/ijms18020249
Received: 29 November 2016 / Revised: 13 January 2017 / Accepted: 16 January 2017 / Published: 25 January 2017
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Abstract
TiO2-based photocatalysts were obtained during previous years in order to limit pollution and to ease human daily living conditions due to their special properties. However, obtaining biocompatible photocatalysts is still a key problem, and the mechanism of their toxicity recently received
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TiO2-based photocatalysts were obtained during previous years in order to limit pollution and to ease human daily living conditions due to their special properties. However, obtaining biocompatible photocatalysts is still a key problem, and the mechanism of their toxicity recently received increased attention. Two types of TiO2 nanoparticles co-doped with 1% of iron and nitrogen (TiO2-1% Fe–N) atoms were synthesized in hydrothermal conditions at pH of 8.5 (HT1) and 5.5 (HT2), and their antimicrobial activity and cytotoxic effects exerted on human pulmonary and dermal fibroblasts were assessed. These particles exhibited significant microbicidal and anti-biofilm activity, suggesting their potential application for microbial decontamination of different environments. In addition, our results demonstrated the biocompatibility of TiO2-1% Fe–N nanoparticles at low doses on lung and dermal cells, which may initiate oxidative stress through dose accumulation. Although no significant changes were observed between the two tested photocatalysts, the biological response was cell type specific and time- and dose-dependent; the lung cells proved to be more sensitive to nanoparticle exposure. Taken together, these experimental data provide useful information for future photocatalytic applications in the industrial, food, pharmaceutical, and medical fields. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Exhaled Breath Metabolomics for the Diagnosis of Pneumonia in Intubated and Mechanically-Ventilated Intensive Care Unit (ICU)-Patients
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 449; doi:10.3390/ijms18020449
Received: 27 December 2016 / Revised: 3 February 2017 / Accepted: 15 February 2017 / Published: 19 February 2017
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Abstract
The diagnosis of hospital-acquired pneumonia remains challenging. We hypothesized that analysis of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in exhaled breath could be used to diagnose pneumonia or the presence of pathogens in the respiratory tract in intubated and mechanically-ventilated intensive care unit patients. In
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The diagnosis of hospital-acquired pneumonia remains challenging. We hypothesized that analysis of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in exhaled breath could be used to diagnose pneumonia or the presence of pathogens in the respiratory tract in intubated and mechanically-ventilated intensive care unit patients. In this prospective, single-centre, cross-sectional cohort study breath from mechanically ventilated patients was analysed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Potentially relevant VOCs were selected with a p-value < 0.05 and an area under the receiver operating characteristics curve (AUROC) above 0.7. These VOCs were used for principal component analysis and partial least square discriminant analysis (PLS-DA). AUROC was used as a measure of accuracy. Ninety-three patients were included in the study. Twelve of 145 identified VOCs were significantly altered in patients with pneumonia compared to controls. In colonized patients, 52 VOCs were significantly different. Partial least square discriminant analysis classified patients with modest accuracy (AUROC: 0.73 (95% confidence interval (CI): 0.57–0.88) after leave-one-out cross-validation). For determining the colonization status of patients, the model had an AUROC of 0.69 (95% CI: 0.57–0.82) after leave-one-out cross-validation. To conclude, exhaled breath analysis can be used to discriminate pneumonia from controls with a modest to good accuracy. Furthermore breath profiling could be used to predict the presence and absence of pathogens in the respiratory tract. These findings need to be validated externally. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pneumonia: Pathogenesis, Diagnostics, Therapeutics, and Prevention)
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Open AccessArticle AKT Axis, miR-21, and RECK Play Pivotal Roles in Dihydroartemisinin Killing Malignant Glioma Cells
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 350; doi:10.3390/ijms18020350
Received: 8 November 2016 / Revised: 4 January 2017 / Accepted: 31 January 2017 / Published: 10 February 2017
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Abstract
Dihydroartemisinin (DHA), a semi-synthetic derivative of artemisinin, is known to play important roles in inhibiting proliferation rate, inducing apoptosis, as well as hindering the metastasis and invasion of glioma cells, but the underlying mechanisms are still unclear so far. In this study, methyl
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Dihydroartemisinin (DHA), a semi-synthetic derivative of artemisinin, is known to play important roles in inhibiting proliferation rate, inducing apoptosis, as well as hindering the metastasis and invasion of glioma cells, but the underlying mechanisms are still unclear so far. In this study, methyl thiazolyl tetrazolium (MTT), colony-forming, wound healing, invasion, and apoptosis assays were performed to investigate the effect of DHA on malignant glioma cells. Results showed that DHA induced apoptosis of malignant glioma cells through Protein Kinase B (AKT) axis, induced death of malignant glioma cells by downregulating miR-21, and inhibited the invasion of malignant glioma cells corresponding with up-regulation of the reversion-inducing-cysteine-rich protein with kazal motifs (RECK). These results revealed that AKT axis, miR-21, and RECK play pivotal roles in DHA killing malignant glioma cells, suggesting that DHA is a potential agent for treating glioma. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Translational Molecular Medicine & Molecular Drug Discovery)
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Open AccessArticle Influence of Transgenic Metallothionein-1 on Gliosis, CA1 Neuronal Loss, and Brain Metal Levels of the Tg2576 Mouse Model of Alzheimer’s Disease
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 251; doi:10.3390/ijms18020251
Received: 22 November 2016 / Revised: 17 January 2017 / Accepted: 19 January 2017 / Published: 26 January 2017
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Abstract
The mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Tg2576 mice (APP), has provided valuable information, such as the role of the metallothionein (MT) family in their behavioral and amyloidosis phenotypes. In this study, we further characterize the role of MT-1 by crossing Mt1-overexpressing
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The mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Tg2576 mice (APP), has provided valuable information, such as the role of the metallothionein (MT) family in their behavioral and amyloidosis phenotypes. In this study, we further characterize the role of MT-1 by crossing Mt1-overexpressing mice with Tg2576 mice (APPTgMT). In 14-month-old mice, MT-1(/2) protein levels were dramatically increased by Mt1 overexpression throughout the cortex (Cx), which showed a prominent caudal-rostral gradient, and the hippocampus (HC). There was a trend for MT-1(/2) immunostaining to be increased in the areas surrounding the amyloid plaques in control male mice but not in Mt1-overexpressing mice. Gliosis was elicited by the amyloid plaques, but the effects of Mt1 overexpression were modest. However, in hippocampal western blots the microglial marker Iba-1 was increased in old male APPTgMT mice compared to APP-wild type (APPWT) mice, and the opposite was observed in young mice. Hippocampal CA1 neuronal loss was observed in Tg2576 mice, but was unaffected by Mt1 overexpression. Aging increased Zn and Cu levels differently depending on brain area, sex, and genotype. Thus, the effects of Mt1 overexpression on the phenotype of Tg2576 mice here studied are modest. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metalloproteins 2017)
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Open AccessArticle Quantitative Determination of Stilbenoids and Dihydroisocoumarins in Shorea roxburghii and Evaluation of Their Hepatoprotective Activity
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 451; doi:10.3390/ijms18020451
Received: 28 December 2016 / Revised: 13 February 2017 / Accepted: 15 February 2017 / Published: 20 February 2017
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Abstract
A simultaneous quantitative analytical method for 13 stilbenoids including (−)-hopeaphenol (1), (+)-isohopeaphenol (2), hemsleyanol D (3), (−)-ampelopsin H (4), vaticanols A (5), E (6), and G (7), (+)-α-viniferin (
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A simultaneous quantitative analytical method for 13 stilbenoids including (−)-hopeaphenol (1), (+)-isohopeaphenol (2), hemsleyanol D (3), (−)-ampelopsin H (4), vaticanols A (5), E (6), and G (7), (+)-α-viniferin (8), pauciflorol A (9), hopeafuran (10), (−)-balanocarpol (11), (−)-ampelopsin A (12), and trans-resveratrol 10-C-β-d-glucopyranoside (13), and two dihydroisocoumarins, phayomphenols A1 (14) and A2 (15) in the extract of Shorea roxburghii (dipterocarpaceae) was developed. According to the established protocol, distributions of these 15 polyphenols (115) in the bark and wood parts of S. roxburghii and a related plant Cotylelobium melanoxylon were evaluated. In addition, the principal polyphenols (1, 2, 8, 1315) exhibited hepatoprotective effects against d-galactosamine (d-galN)/lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced liver injury in mice at a dose of 100 or 200 mg/kg, p.o. To characterize the mechanisms of action, the isolates were examined in in vitro studies assessing their effects on (i) d-GalN-induced cytotoxicity in primary cultured mouse hepatocytes; (ii) LPS-induced nitric oxide (NO) production in mouse peritoneal macrophages; and (iii) tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α)-induced cytotoxicity in L929 cells. The mechanisms of action of these polyphenols (1, 2, and 8) were suggested to be dependent on the inhibition of LPS-induced macrophage activation and reduction of sensitivity of hepatocytes to TNF-α. However, none of the isolates reduced the cytotoxicity caused by d-GalN. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Activity of Natural Secondary Metabolite Products)
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Open AccessArticle Induction of Syndecan-4 by Organic–Inorganic Hybrid Molecules with a 1,10-Phenanthroline Structure in Cultured Vascular Endothelial Cells
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 352; doi:10.3390/ijms18020352
Received: 12 December 2016 / Revised: 27 January 2017 / Accepted: 2 February 2017 / Published: 8 February 2017
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Abstract
Organic–inorganic hybrid molecules constitute analytical tools used in biological systems. Vascular endothelial cells synthesize and secrete proteoglycans, which are macromolecules consisting of a core protein and glycosaminoglycan side chains. Although the expression of endothelial proteoglycans is regulated by several cytokines/growth factors, there may
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Organic–inorganic hybrid molecules constitute analytical tools used in biological systems. Vascular endothelial cells synthesize and secrete proteoglycans, which are macromolecules consisting of a core protein and glycosaminoglycan side chains. Although the expression of endothelial proteoglycans is regulated by several cytokines/growth factors, there may be alternative pathways for proteoglycan synthesis aside from downstream pathways activated by these cytokines/growth factors. Here, we investigated organic–inorganic hybrid molecules to determine a variant capable of analyzing the expression of syndecan-4, a transmembrane heparan-sulfate proteoglycan, and identified 1,10-phenanthroline (o-Phen) with or without zinc (Zn-Phen) or rhodium (Rh-Phen). Bovine aortic endothelial cells in culture were treated with these compounds, and the expression of syndecan-4 mRNA and core proteins was determined by real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction and Western blot analysis, respectively. Our findings indicated that o-Phen and Zn-Phen specifically and strongly induced syndecan-4 expression in cultured vascular endothelial cells through activation of the hypoxia-inducible factor-1α/β pathway via inhibition of prolyl hydroxylase-domain-containing protein 2. These results demonstrated an alternative pathway involved in mediating induction of endothelial syndecan-4 expression and revealed organic–inorganic hybrid molecules as effective tools for analyzing biological systems. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Genetic Variation in Choline-Metabolizing Enzymes Alters Choline Metabolism in Young Women Consuming Choline Intakes Meeting Current Recommendations
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 252; doi:10.3390/ijms18020252
Received: 24 December 2016 / Revised: 14 January 2017 / Accepted: 17 January 2017 / Published: 26 January 2017
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Abstract
Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in choline metabolizing genes are associated with disease risk and greater susceptibility to organ dysfunction under conditions of dietary choline restriction. However, the underlying metabolic signatures of these variants are not well characterized and it is unknown whether genotypic
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Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in choline metabolizing genes are associated with disease risk and greater susceptibility to organ dysfunction under conditions of dietary choline restriction. However, the underlying metabolic signatures of these variants are not well characterized and it is unknown whether genotypic differences persist at recommended choline intakes. Thus, we sought to determine if common genetic risk factors alter choline dynamics in pregnant, lactating, and non-pregnant women consuming choline intakes meeting and exceeding current recommendations. Women (n = 75) consumed 480 or 930 mg choline/day (22% as a metabolic tracer, choline-d9) for 10–12 weeks in a controlled feeding study. Genotyping was performed for eight variant SNPs and genetic differences in metabolic flux and partitioning of plasma choline metabolites were evaluated using stable isotope methodology. CHKA rs10791957, CHDH rs9001, CHDH rs12676, PEMT rs4646343, PEMT rs7946, FMO3 rs2266782, SLC44A1 rs7873937, and SLC44A1 rs3199966 altered the use of choline as a methyl donor; CHDH rs9001 and BHMT rs3733890 altered the partitioning of dietary choline between betaine and phosphatidylcholine synthesis via the cytidine diphosphate (CDP)-choline pathway; and CHKA rs10791957, CHDH rs12676, PEMT rs4646343, PEMT rs7946 and SLC44A1 rs7873937 altered the distribution of dietary choline between the CDP-choline and phosphatidylethanolamine N-methyltransferase (PEMT) denovo pathway. Such metabolic differences may contribute to disease pathogenesis and prognosis over the long-term. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutrigenomics of Risk Factors for Disease)
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Open AccessArticle Application of Chromatographic and Spectroscopic Methods towards the Quality Assessment of Ginger (Zingiber officinale) Rhizomes from Ecological Plantations
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 452; doi:10.3390/ijms18020452
Received: 3 February 2017 / Revised: 16 February 2017 / Accepted: 16 February 2017 / Published: 20 February 2017
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Abstract
The usefulness of ginger in the food industry and pharmacotherapy is strictly related to its content of various components. The study elucidates the chemical composition of Zingiber officinale rhizomes cultivated on ecological plantations on Shikoku Island (Japan). GC-MS analysis of terpene content, LC-MS
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The usefulness of ginger in the food industry and pharmacotherapy is strictly related to its content of various components. The study elucidates the chemical composition of Zingiber officinale rhizomes cultivated on ecological plantations on Shikoku Island (Japan). GC-MS analysis of terpene content, LC-MS determination of phenolic content, and the determination of 12 elements using AAS spectrometry were performed to give more detailed insight into the samples. Ninety-five percent of terpene composition was elucidated, with zingiberene as the most abundant sesquiterpene (37.9%); the quantification of gingerols and shogaols was performed, showing the highest contribution of 6-gingerol (268.3 mg/kg); a significant K (43,963 mg/kg of dry mass) and Mn (758.4 mg/kg of dry mass) content was determined in the elemental analysis of the rhizomes and low concentration of toxic elements (Cd, Ni and Pb) remaining below the safe level values recommended by European Commission Directives. The main phenolic compound was (6)-gingerol, which is characteristic of fresh rhizomes and is responsible for their taste and aroma. Surprisingly, high amounts of (6)-shogaol were determined, even though this phenolic compound usually occurs in old or processed material and not in fresh rhizomes. Sesquiterpenes were the major fraction of volatiles. The highest concentrations were determined for α-zingiberene, β-sesquiphellandrene, (E,E)-α-farnesene, geranial, and ar-curcumene. The volatiles composition of ginger cultivated on Shikoku Island is specific and strongly differs from plants cultivated in China, Nigeria, or Australia. The elemental composition of ginger rhizomes grown in ecological plantations is more beneficial for human health compared to products grown in normal cultivars, as the products contain high amounts of potassium and manganese and are characterized by low sodium content and lower levels of toxic heavy metals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Techniques in Plant and Food Analysis)
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Open AccessArticle Influence of Knee Immobilization on Chondrocyte Apoptosis and Histological Features of the Anterior Cruciate Ligament Insertion and Articular Cartilage in Rabbits
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 253; doi:10.3390/ijms18020253
Received: 26 December 2016 / Revised: 18 January 2017 / Accepted: 20 January 2017 / Published: 26 January 2017
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Abstract
This study examined the influence of immobilization on chondrocyte apoptosis and histological features of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) insertion and knee articular cartilage in rabbits. Forty-eight male Japanese white rabbits were assigned to an immobilization (n = 24) or sham (
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This study examined the influence of immobilization on chondrocyte apoptosis and histological features of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) insertion and knee articular cartilage in rabbits. Forty-eight male Japanese white rabbits were assigned to an immobilization (n = 24) or sham (n = 24) group. Rabbits in the immobilization group underwent complete unilateral surgical knee immobilization and rabbits in the sham group underwent a sham surgery. The average thickness of the glycosaminoglycan (GAG) stained red area by safranin O staining, the chondrocyte apoptosis rate and the chondrocyte proliferation rate in the cartilage layer in the ACL insertion and the articular cartilage of the medial tibial condyle were measured at one, two, four and eight weeks in six animals from each group. In the ACL insertion, the chondrocyte apoptosis rate was higher in the immobilization group than in the sham group at two and eight weeks after surgery (p < 0.05). The chondrocyte proliferation rate gradually decreased from two weeks to eight weeks in the immobilization group. The GAG layer was thinner in the immobilization group than in the sham group at two, four and eight weeks after surgery (p < 0.05). In the articular cartilage, the chondrocyte apoptosis rate in the immobilization group was higher than in the sham group at four and eight weeks after surgery (p < 0.05). The GAG layer was significantly thinner in the immobilization group than that in the sham group at four and eight weeks after surgery (p < 0.05). Knee immobilization significantly increased chondrocyte apoptosis at two and eight weeks after surgery in the ACL insertion and at four and eight weeks after surgery in the articular cartilage of the medial tibial condyle, and decreased GAG layer thickness from two to eight weeks after surgery in the ACL insertion and from four to eight weeks after surgery in the articular cartilage. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Apoptotic Chondrocytes and Osteoarthritis)
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Open AccessArticle The Application of a Modified d-ROMs Test for Measurement of Oxidative Stress and Oxidized High-Density Lipoprotein
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 454; doi:10.3390/ijms18020454
Received: 6 January 2017 / Revised: 4 February 2017 / Accepted: 15 February 2017 / Published: 21 February 2017
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Abstract
Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are involved in the initiation and progression of atherosclerosis. ROS-derived hydroperoxides, as an indicator of ROS production, have been measured by using the diacron reactive oxygen metabolites (d-ROMs) test, which requires iron-containing transferrin in the reaction mixture. In this
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Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are involved in the initiation and progression of atherosclerosis. ROS-derived hydroperoxides, as an indicator of ROS production, have been measured by using the diacron reactive oxygen metabolites (d-ROMs) test, which requires iron-containing transferrin in the reaction mixture. In this study we developed a modified d-ROMs test, termed the Fe-ROMs test, where iron ions were exogenously added to the reaction mixture. This modification is expected to exclude the assay variation that comes from different blood iron levels in individuals. In addition, this Fe-ROMs test was helpful for determining the class of plasma lipoproteins that are hydroperoxidized. Low-density lipoprotein/very low-density lipoprotein (LDL/VLDL) and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) were purified by use of an LDL/VLDL purification kit and the dextran sulfate-Mg2+ precipitation method, respectively; their hydroperoxide contents were assessed by performing the Fe-ROMs test. The majority of the hydroperoxides were detected only in the HDL fraction, not in the LDL/VLDL. Further detailed analysis of HDLs by size-exclusion high-performance liquid chromatography revealed that the hydroperoxide-containing molecules were small-sized HDLs. Because HDL was shown to be the principal vehicle for the plasma hydroperoxides, this Fe-ROMs test is a beneficial method for the assessment of oxidized-HDL levels. Indeed, Fe-ROMs levels were strongly associated with the levels of oxidized HDL, which were determined by performing the malondialdehyde-modified HDL enzyme immunoassay. In conclusion, the Fe-ROMs test using plasma itself or the HDL fraction after dextran sulfate-Mg2+ precipitation is useful to assess the functionality of HDL, because the oxidation of HDL impairs its antiatherogenic capacity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Pathology, Diagnostics, and Therapeutics)
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Open AccessArticle Antidepressant Effects of Aripiprazole Augmentation for Cilostazol-Treated Mice Exposed to Chronic Mild Stress after Ischemic Stroke
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 355; doi:10.3390/ijms18020355
Received: 22 September 2016 / Revised: 29 January 2017 / Accepted: 3 February 2017 / Published: 8 February 2017
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Abstract
The aim of this study was to determine the effects and underlying mechanism of aripiprazole (APZ) augmentation for cilostazol (CLS)-treated post-ischemic stroke mice that were exposed to chronic mild stress (CMS). Compared to treatment with either APZ or CLS alone, the combined treatment
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The aim of this study was to determine the effects and underlying mechanism of aripiprazole (APZ) augmentation for cilostazol (CLS)-treated post-ischemic stroke mice that were exposed to chronic mild stress (CMS). Compared to treatment with either APZ or CLS alone, the combined treatment resulted in a greater reduction in depressive behaviors, including anhedonia, despair-like behaviors, and memory impairments. This treatment also significantly reduced atrophic changes in the striatum, cortex, and midbrain of CMS-treated ischemic mice, and inhibited neuronal cell apoptosis, particularly in the striatum and the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus. Greater proliferation of neuronal progenitor cells was also observed in the ipsilateral striatum of the mice receiving combined treatment compared to mice receiving either drug alone. Phosphorylation of the cyclic adenosine monophosphate response element binding protein (CREB) was increased in the striatum, hippocampus, and midbrain of mice receiving combined treatment compared to treatment with either drug alone, particularly in the neurons of the striatum and hippocampus, and dopaminergic neurons of the midbrain. Our results suggest that APZ may augment the antidepressant effects of CLS via co-regulation of the CREB signaling pathway, resulting in the synergistic enhancement of their neuroprotective effects. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Translational Molecular Medicine & Molecular Drug Discovery)
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