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Int. J. Mol. Sci., Volume 18, Issue 7 (July 2017)

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Cover Story (view full-size image) After determining the 3D structure of Littorina littorea metallothionein (Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., [...] Read more.
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Open AccessArticle Induction of a Regulatory Phenotype in CD3+ CD4+ HLA-DR+ T Cells after Allogeneic Mixed Lymphocyte Culture; Indications of Both Contact-Dependent and -Independent Activation
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1603; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071603
Received: 14 June 2017 / Revised: 14 July 2017 / Accepted: 19 July 2017 / Published: 24 July 2017
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Abstract
Although the observation of major histocompatibility complex II (MHCII) receptors on T cells is longstanding, the explanation for this occurrence remains enigmatic. Reports of an inducible, endogenous expression exist, as do studies demonstrating a protein acquisition from other cells by mechanisms including vesicle
[...] Read more.
Although the observation of major histocompatibility complex II (MHCII) receptors on T cells is longstanding, the explanation for this occurrence remains enigmatic. Reports of an inducible, endogenous expression exist, as do studies demonstrating a protein acquisition from other cells by mechanisms including vesicle transfer. Irrespective of origin, the presence of the human MHCII isotype, human leukocyte antigen DR (HLA-DR), potentially identifies a regulatory T cell population. Using an allogeneic mixed lymphocyte culture (MLC) to induce an antigen-specific immune response, the role of antigen-presenting cells (APCs) for the presence of HLA-DR on cluster of differentiation 3(CD3)+ CD4+ T cells was evaluated. Moreover, a functional phenotype was established for these T cells. It was demonstrated that APCs were essential for HLA-DR on CD3+ CD4+ T cells. Additionally, a regulatory T cell phenotype was induced in CD3+ CD4+ HLA-DR+ responder T cells with an expression of CD25, CTLA-4, CD62L, PD-1, and TNFRII. This phenotype was induced both with and without physical T cell:APC contact, which could reveal novel indications about its functionality. To further investigate contact-independent communication, a phenotype of the small cell-derived vesicles from the MLCs was determined. Yet heterogeneous, this vesicle phenotype displayed contact-dependent differences, providing clues about their intended function in cellular communication. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry)
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Open AccessArticle Pyranopyran-1,8-dione, an Active Compound from Vitices Fructus, Attenuates Cigarette-Smoke Induced Lung Inflammation in Mice
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1602; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071602
Received: 28 June 2017 / Revised: 21 July 2017 / Accepted: 21 July 2017 / Published: 24 July 2017
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1120 | PDF Full-text (3023 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Previously, we isolated and identified pyranopyran-1,8-dione (PPY) from Viticis Fructus, as a bioactive compound possessing anti-inflammatory properties. The present study was aimed to evaluate the preventive benefit of PPY on cigarette–smoke (CS)-induced lung inflammation. C57BL/6 mice were exposed to CS for 2 weeks
[...] Read more.
Previously, we isolated and identified pyranopyran-1,8-dione (PPY) from Viticis Fructus, as a bioactive compound possessing anti-inflammatory properties. The present study was aimed to evaluate the preventive benefit of PPY on cigarette–smoke (CS)-induced lung inflammation. C57BL/6 mice were exposed to CS for 2 weeks while PPY was administrated by oral injection 2 h before CS exposure. To validate the anti-inflammatory effects of PPY, the numbers of immune cells in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid were counted. Proinflammatory cytokines (Tumor necrosis factor-α: TNF-α, IL-6) and keratinocyte chemokine (KC/CXCL1) were also measured. Histopathologic analysis and cellular profiles showed that inflammatory cell infiltrations were significantly decreased in peribronchial and perivascular area by PPY treatment. The alveolar destruction by CS was markedly ameliorated by PPY treatment. In addition, the TNF-α, IL-6, and KC levels were declined in the PPY groups. These observations suggest that PPY has a preventive potential for lung inflammatory diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Anti-Inflammatory Agents)
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Open AccessArticle The Effects of Artemisinin on the Cytolytic Activity of Natural Killer (NK) Cells
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1600; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071600
Received: 3 June 2017 / Revised: 13 July 2017 / Accepted: 21 July 2017 / Published: 24 July 2017
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1429 | PDF Full-text (1658 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Artemisinin, a chemical compound used for the treatment of malaria, has been known to show anti-cancer activity. However, the effect of this chemical on natural killer (NK) cells, which are involved in tumor killing, remains unknown. Here, we demonstrate that artemisinin exerts a
[...] Read more.
Artemisinin, a chemical compound used for the treatment of malaria, has been known to show anti-cancer activity. However, the effect of this chemical on natural killer (NK) cells, which are involved in tumor killing, remains unknown. Here, we demonstrate that artemisinin exerts a potent anti-cancer effect by activating NK cells. NK-92MI cells pre-treated with artemisinin were subjected to a cytotoxicity assay using K562 cells. The results showed that artemisinin significantly enhances the cytolytic activity of NK cells in a dose-dependent manner. Additionally, the artemisinin-enhanced cytotoxic effect of NK-92MI cells on tumor cells was accompanied by the stimulation of granule exocytosis, as evidenced by the detection of CD107a expression in NK cells. Moreover, this enhancement of cytotoxicity by artemisinin was also observed in human primary NK cells from peripheral blood. Our results suggest that artemisinin enhances human NK cell cytotoxicity and degranulation. This is the first evidence that artemisinin exerts antitumor activity by enhancing NK cytotoxicity. Therefore, these results provide a deeper understanding of the action of artemisinin and will contribute to the development and application of this class of compounds in cancer treatment strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Killer (NK) Cells)
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Open AccessReview Cytoprotective Effect of the UCP2-SIRT3 Signaling Pathway by Decreasing Mitochondrial Oxidative Stress on Cerebral Ischemia–Reperfusion Injury
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1599; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071599
Received: 22 June 2017 / Revised: 18 July 2017 / Accepted: 19 July 2017 / Published: 24 July 2017
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1949 | PDF Full-text (470 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Recovered blood supply after cerebral ischemia for a certain period of time fails to restore brain function, with more severe dysfunctional problems developing, called cerebral ischemia–reperfusion injury (CIR). CIR involves several extremely complex pathophysiological processes in which the interactions between key factors at
[...] Read more.
Recovered blood supply after cerebral ischemia for a certain period of time fails to restore brain function, with more severe dysfunctional problems developing, called cerebral ischemia–reperfusion injury (CIR). CIR involves several extremely complex pathophysiological processes in which the interactions between key factors at various stages have not been fully elucidated. Mitochondrial dysfunction is one of the most important mechanisms of CIR. The mitochondrial deacetylase, sirtuin 3 (SIRT3), can inhibit mitochondrial oxidative stress by deacetylation, to maintain mitochondrial stability. Uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2) regulates ATP (Adenosine triphosphate) and reactive oxygen species production by affecting the mitochondrial respiratory chain, which may play a protective role in CIR. Finally, we propose that UCP2 regulates the activity of SIRT3 through sensing the energy level and, in turn, maintaining the mitochondrial steady state, which demonstrates a cytoprotective effect on CIR. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Free Radicals and Oxidants in Pathogenesis)
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Open AccessArticle An Appropriate Modulation of Lymphoproliferative Response and Cytokine Release as Possible Contributors to Longevity
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1598; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071598
Received: 26 June 2017 / Revised: 12 July 2017 / Accepted: 19 July 2017 / Published: 24 July 2017
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1114 | PDF Full-text (3302 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The decrease in the proliferative response of lymphocytes is one of the most evident among the age-related changes of the immune system. This has been linked to a higher risk of mortality in both humans and experimental animals. However, long-lived individuals, in spite
[...] Read more.
The decrease in the proliferative response of lymphocytes is one of the most evident among the age-related changes of the immune system. This has been linked to a higher risk of mortality in both humans and experimental animals. However, long-lived individuals, in spite of optimally maintaining most of the functions of the immune system, also seem to show an impaired proliferative response. Thus, it was hypothesized that these individuals may have distinct evolution times in this proliferation and a different modulatory capacity through their cytokine release profiles. An individualized longitudinal study was performed on female ICR-CD1 mice, starting at the adult age (40 weeks old), analyzing the proliferation of peritoneal leukocytes at different ages in both basal conditions and in the presence of the mitogen Concanavalin A, for 4, 24 and 48 h of culture. The cytokine secretions (IL-2, IL-17, IL-1β, IL-6, TNF-α and IL-10) in the same cultures were also studied. Long-lived mice show a high proliferative capacity after short incubation times and, despite experiencing a functional decline when they are old, are able to compensate this decrease with an appropriate modulation of the lymphoproliferative response and cytokine release. This could explain their elevated resistance to infections and high longevity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Immunology of Aging)
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Open AccessReview Redox Properties of Tryptophan Metabolism and the Concept of Tryptophan Use in Pregnancy
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1595; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071595
Received: 20 June 2017 / Revised: 11 July 2017 / Accepted: 19 July 2017 / Published: 24 July 2017
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1950 | PDF Full-text (1939 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
During pregnancy, tryptophan (Trp) is required for several purposes, and Trp metabolism varies over time in the mother and fetus. Increased oxidative stress (OS) with high metabolic, energy and oxygen demands during normal pregnancy or in pregnancy-associated disorders has been reported. Taking the
[...] Read more.
During pregnancy, tryptophan (Trp) is required for several purposes, and Trp metabolism varies over time in the mother and fetus. Increased oxidative stress (OS) with high metabolic, energy and oxygen demands during normal pregnancy or in pregnancy-associated disorders has been reported. Taking the antioxidant properties of Trp and its metabolites into consideration, we made four hypotheses. First, the use of Trp and its metabolites is optional based on their antioxidant properties during pregnancy. Second, dynamic Trp metabolism is an accommodation mechanism in response to OS. Third, regulation of Trp metabolism could be used to control/attenuate OS according to variations in Trp metabolism during pregnancy. Fourth, OS-mediated injury could be alleviated by regulation of Trp metabolism in pregnancy-associated disorders. Future studies in normal/abnormal pregnancies and in associated disorders should include measurements of free Trp, total Trp, Trp metabolites, and activities of Trp-degrading enzymes in plasma. Abnormal pregnancies and some associated disorders may be associated with disordered Trp metabolism related to OS. Mounting evidence suggests that the investigation of the use of Trp and its metabolites in pregnancy will be meanful. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Free Radicals and Oxidants in Pathogenesis)
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Open AccessReview Application of Extrusion-Based Hydrogel Bioprinting for Cartilage Tissue Engineering
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1597; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071597
Received: 7 June 2017 / Revised: 10 July 2017 / Accepted: 16 July 2017 / Published: 23 July 2017
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 2636 | PDF Full-text (950 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Extrusion-based bioprinting (EBB) is a rapidly developing technique that has made substantial progress in the fabrication of constructs for cartilage tissue engineering (CTE) over the past decade. With this technique, cell-laden hydrogels or bio-inks have been extruded onto printing stages, layer-by-layer, to form
[...] Read more.
Extrusion-based bioprinting (EBB) is a rapidly developing technique that has made substantial progress in the fabrication of constructs for cartilage tissue engineering (CTE) over the past decade. With this technique, cell-laden hydrogels or bio-inks have been extruded onto printing stages, layer-by-layer, to form three-dimensional (3D) constructs with varying sizes, shapes, and resolutions. This paper reviews the cell sources and hydrogels that can be used for bio-ink formulations in CTE application. Additionally, this paper discusses the important properties of bio-inks to be applied in the EBB technique, including biocompatibility, printability, as well as mechanical properties. The printability of a bio-ink is associated with the formation of first layer, ink rheological properties, and crosslinking mechanisms. Further, this paper discusses two bioprinting approaches to build up cartilage constructs, i.e., self-supporting hydrogel bioprinting and hybrid bioprinting, along with their applications in fabricating chondral, osteochondral, and zonally organized cartilage regenerative constructs. Lastly, current limitations and future opportunities of EBB in printing cartilage regenerative constructs are reviewed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Three-dimensional (3D) Bioprinting of Tissues and Organs)
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Open AccessReview Autophagy and Human Neurodegenerative Diseases—A Fly’s Perspective
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1596; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071596
Received: 19 June 2017 / Revised: 12 July 2017 / Accepted: 21 July 2017 / Published: 23 July 2017
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2094 | PDF Full-text (449 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Neurodegenerative diseases in humans are frequently associated with prominent accumulation of toxic protein inclusions and defective organelles. Autophagy is a process of bulk lysosomal degradation that eliminates these harmful substances and maintains the subcellular environmental quality. In support of autophagy’s importance in neuronal
[...] Read more.
Neurodegenerative diseases in humans are frequently associated with prominent accumulation of toxic protein inclusions and defective organelles. Autophagy is a process of bulk lysosomal degradation that eliminates these harmful substances and maintains the subcellular environmental quality. In support of autophagy’s importance in neuronal homeostasis, several genetic mutations that interfere with autophagic processes were found to be associated with familial neurodegenerative disorders. In addition, genetic mutations in autophagy-regulating genes provoked neurodegenerative phenotypes in animal models. The Drosophila model significantly contributed to these recent developments, which led to the theory that autophagy dysregulation is one of the major underlying causes of human neurodegenerative disorders. In the current review, we discuss how studies using Drosophila enhanced our understanding of the relationship between autophagy and neurodegenerative processes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neuronal Protein Homeostasis in Health and Disease)
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Open AccessArticle Comparison of Two Stationary Phases for the Determination of Phytosterols and Tocopherols in Mango and Its By-Products by GC-QTOF-MS
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1594; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071594
Received: 1 June 2017 / Revised: 18 July 2017 / Accepted: 19 July 2017 / Published: 22 July 2017
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Abstract
Two different gas chromatography coupled to quadrupole-time of flight mass spectrometry (GC-QTOF-MS) methodologies were carried out for the analysis of phytosterols and tocopherols in the flesh of three mango cultivars and their by-products (pulp, peel, and seed). To that end, a non-polar column
[...] Read more.
Two different gas chromatography coupled to quadrupole-time of flight mass spectrometry (GC-QTOF-MS) methodologies were carried out for the analysis of phytosterols and tocopherols in the flesh of three mango cultivars and their by-products (pulp, peel, and seed). To that end, a non-polar column ((5%-phenyl)-methylpolysiloxane (HP-5ms)) and a mid-polar column (crossbond trifluoropropylmethyl polysiloxane (RTX-200MS)) were used. The analysis time for RTX-200MS was much lower than the one obtained with HP-5ms. Furthermore, the optimized method for the RTX-200MS column had a higher sensibility and precision of peak area than the HP-5ms methodology. However, RTX-200MS produced an overlapping between β-sitosterol and Δ5-avenasterol. Four phytosterols and two tocopherols were identified in mango samples. As far as we are concerned, this is the first time that phytosterols have been studied in mango peel and that Δ5-avenasterol has been reported in mango pulp. α- and γ-tocopherol were determined in peel, and α-tocopherol was the major tocopherol in this fraction (up to 81.2%); however, only α-tocopherol was determined in the pulp and seed. The peel was the fraction with the highest total concentration of phytosterols followed by seed and pulp, and “Sensación” was the cultivar with the highest concentration of total phytosterols in most cases. There were no significant differences between quantification of tocopherols with both columns. However, in most cases, quantification of phytosterols was higher with RTX-200MS than with HP-5ms column. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Techniques in Plant and Food Analysis)
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Open AccessArticle Predictive Structure and Topology of Peroxisomal ATP-Binding Cassette (ABC) Transporters
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1593; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071593
Received: 26 June 2017 / Revised: 10 July 2017 / Accepted: 19 July 2017 / Published: 22 July 2017
Viewed by 1788 | PDF Full-text (3264 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
The peroxisomal ATP-binding Cassette (ABC) transporters, which are called ABCD1, ABCD2 and ABCD3, are transmembrane proteins involved in the transport of various lipids that allow their degradation inside the organelle. Defective ABCD1 leads to the accumulation of very long-chain fatty acids and is
[...] Read more.
The peroxisomal ATP-binding Cassette (ABC) transporters, which are called ABCD1, ABCD2 and ABCD3, are transmembrane proteins involved in the transport of various lipids that allow their degradation inside the organelle. Defective ABCD1 leads to the accumulation of very long-chain fatty acids and is associated with a complex and severe neurodegenerative disorder called X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy (X-ALD). Although the nucleotide-binding domain is highly conserved and characterized within the ABC transporters family, solid data are missing for the transmembrane domain (TMD) of ABCD proteins. The lack of a clear consensus on the secondary and tertiary structure of the TMDs weakens any structure-function hypothesis based on the very diverse ABCD1 mutations found in X-ALD patients. Therefore, we first reinvestigated thoroughly the structure-function data available and performed refined alignments of ABCD protein sequences. Based on the 2.85  Å resolution crystal structure of the mitochondrial ABC transporter ABCB10, here we propose a structural model of peroxisomal ABCD proteins that specifies the position of the transmembrane and coupling helices, and highlight functional motifs and putative important amino acid residues. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physiological and Pathological Roles of ABC Transporters)
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Open AccessReview An Update on Jacalin-Like Lectins and Their Role in Plant Defense
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1592; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071592
Received: 30 June 2017 / Revised: 17 July 2017 / Accepted: 20 July 2017 / Published: 22 July 2017
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1427 | PDF Full-text (3334 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Plant lectins are proteins that reversibly bind carbohydrates and are assumed to play an important role in plant development and resistance. Through the binding of carbohydrate ligands, lectins are involved in the perception of environmental signals and their translation into phenotypical responses. These
[...] Read more.
Plant lectins are proteins that reversibly bind carbohydrates and are assumed to play an important role in plant development and resistance. Through the binding of carbohydrate ligands, lectins are involved in the perception of environmental signals and their translation into phenotypical responses. These processes require down-stream signaling cascades, often mediated by interacting proteins. Fusing the respective genes of two interacting proteins can be a way to increase the efficiency of this process. Most recently, proteins containing jacalin-related lectin (JRL) domains became a subject of plant resistance responses research. A meta-data analysis of fusion proteins containing JRL domains across different kingdoms revealed diverse partner domains ranging from kinases to toxins. Among them, proteins containing a JRL domain and a dirigent domain occur exclusively within monocotyledonous plants and show an unexpected high range of family member expansion compared to other JRL-fusion proteins. Rice, wheat, and barley plants overexpressing OsJAC1, a member of this family, are resistant against important fungal pathogens. We discuss the possibility that JRL domains also function as a decoy in fusion proteins and help to alert plants of the presence of attacking pathogens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Lectins: From Model Species to Crop Plants)
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Open AccessReview The Role of p16INK4a Pathway in Human Epidermal Stem Cell Self-Renewal, Aging and Cancer
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1591; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071591
Received: 27 June 2017 / Revised: 13 July 2017 / Accepted: 19 July 2017 / Published: 22 July 2017
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2249 | PDF Full-text (1517 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The epidermis is a self-renewing tissue. The balance between proliferation and differentiation processes is tightly regulated to ensure the maintenance of the stem cell (SC) population in the epidermis during life. Aging and cancer may be considered related endpoints of accumulating damages within
[...] Read more.
The epidermis is a self-renewing tissue. The balance between proliferation and differentiation processes is tightly regulated to ensure the maintenance of the stem cell (SC) population in the epidermis during life. Aging and cancer may be considered related endpoints of accumulating damages within epidermal self-renewing compartment. p16INK4a is a potent inhibitor of the G1/S-phase transition of the cell cycle. p16INK4a governs the processes of SC self-renewal in several tissues and its deregulation may result in aging or tumor development. Keratinocytes are equipped with several epigenetic enzymes and transcription factors that shape the gene expression signatures of different epidermal layers and allow dynamic and coordinated expression changes to finely balance keratinocyte self-renewal and differentiation. These factors converge their activity in the basal layer to repress p16INK4a expression, protecting cells from senescence, and preserving epidermal homeostasis and regeneration. Several stress stimuli may activate p16INK4a expression that orchestrates cell cycle exit and senescence response. In the present review, we discuss the role of p16INK4a regulators in human epidermal SC self-renewal, aging and cancer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Research of Epidermal Stem Cells 2017)
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Open AccessReview Cadmium Handling, Toxicity and Molecular Targets Involved during Pregnancy: Lessons from Experimental Models
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1590; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071590
Received: 29 June 2017 / Revised: 18 July 2017 / Accepted: 18 July 2017 / Published: 22 July 2017
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2060 | PDF Full-text (1064 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Even decades after the discovery of Cadmium (Cd) toxicity, research on this heavy metal is still a hot topic in scientific literature: as we wrote this review, more than 1440 scientific articles had been published and listed by the PubMed.gov website during 2017.
[...] Read more.
Even decades after the discovery of Cadmium (Cd) toxicity, research on this heavy metal is still a hot topic in scientific literature: as we wrote this review, more than 1440 scientific articles had been published and listed by the PubMed.gov website during 2017. Cadmium is one of the most common and harmful heavy metals present in our environment. Since pregnancy is a very particular physiological condition that could impact and modify essential pathways involved in the handling of Cd, the prenatal life is a critical stage for exposure to this non-essential element. To give the reader an overview of the possible mechanisms involved in the multiple organ toxic effects in fetuses after the exposure to Cd during pregnancy, we decided to compile some of the most relevant experimental studies performed in experimental models and to summarize the advances in this field such as the Cd distribution and the factors that could alter it (diet, binding-proteins and membrane transporters), the Cd-induced toxicity in dams (preeclampsia, fertility, kidney injury, alteration in essential element homeostasis and bone mineralization), in placenta and in fetus (teratogenicity, central nervous system, liver and kidney). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metal Metabolism in Animals II)
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Open AccessArticle Mapping Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL) for Resistance to Late Blight in Tomato
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1589; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071589
Received: 6 July 2017 / Revised: 16 July 2017 / Accepted: 19 July 2017 / Published: 22 July 2017
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1693 | PDF Full-text (1256 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
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Late blight caused by Phytophthora infestans (Montagne, Bary) is a devastating disease of tomato worldwide. There are three known major genes, Ph-1, Ph-2, and Ph-3, conferring resistance to late blight. In addition to these three genes, it is also believed
[...] Read more.
Late blight caused by Phytophthora infestans (Montagne, Bary) is a devastating disease of tomato worldwide. There are three known major genes, Ph-1, Ph-2, and Ph-3, conferring resistance to late blight. In addition to these three genes, it is also believed that there are additional factors or quantitative trait loci (QTL) conferring resistance to late blight. Precise molecular mapping of all those major genes and potential QTL is important in the development of suitable molecular markers and hence, marker-assisted selection (MAS). The objective of the present study was to map the genes and QTL associated with late blight resistance in a tomato population derived from intra-specific crosses. To achieve this objective, a population, derived from the crossings of NC 1CELBR × Fla. 7775, consisting of 250 individuals at F2 and F2-derived families, were evaluated in replicated trials. These were conducted at Mountain Horticultural Crops Reseach & Extension Center (MHCREC) at Mills River, NC, and Mountain Research Staion (MRS) at Waynesville, NC in 2011, 2014, and 2015. There were two major QTL associated with late blight resistance located on chromosomes 9 and 10 with likelihood of odd (LOD) scores of more than 42 and 6, explaining 67% and 14% of the total phenotypic variation, respectively. The major QTLs are probably caused by the Ph-2 and Ph-3 genes. Furthermore, there was a minor QTL on chromosomes 12, which has not been reported before. This minor QTL may be novel and may be worth investigating further. Source of resistance to Ph-2, Ph-3, and this minor QTL traces back to line L3707, or Richter’s Wild Tomato. The combination of major genes and minor QTL may provide a durable resistance to late blight in tomato. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Defense Genes Against Biotic Stresses)
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Open AccessReview Age-Related Loss of Cohesion: Causes and Effects
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1578; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071578
Received: 18 June 2017 / Revised: 18 July 2017 / Accepted: 19 July 2017 / Published: 22 July 2017
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1615 | PDF Full-text (889 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Aneuploidy is a leading genetic cause of birth defects and lower implantation rates in humans. Most errors in chromosome number originate from oocytes. Aneuploidy in oocytes increases with advanced maternal age. Recent studies support the hypothesis that cohesion deterioration with advanced maternal age
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Aneuploidy is a leading genetic cause of birth defects and lower implantation rates in humans. Most errors in chromosome number originate from oocytes. Aneuploidy in oocytes increases with advanced maternal age. Recent studies support the hypothesis that cohesion deterioration with advanced maternal age represents a leading cause of age-related aneuploidy. Cohesin generates cohesion, and is established only during the premeiotic S phase of fetal development without any replenishment throughout a female’s period of fertility. Cohesion holds sister chromatids together until meiosis resumes at puberty, and then chromosome segregation requires the release of sister chromatid cohesion from chromosome arms and centromeres at anaphase I and anaphase II, respectively. The time of cohesion cleavage plays an important role in correct chromosome segregation. This review focuses specifically on the causes and effects of age-related cohesion deterioration in female meiosis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry)
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Open AccessArticle In Situ β-Glucan Fortification of Cereal-Based Matrices by Pediococcus parvulus 2.6: Technological Aspects and Prebiotic Potential
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1588; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071588
Received: 23 May 2017 / Revised: 7 July 2017 / Accepted: 17 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 918 | PDF Full-text (1062 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Bacterial exopolysaccharides produced by lactic acid bacteria are of increasing interest in the food industry, since they might enhance the technological and functional properties of some edible matrices. In this work, Pediococcus parvulus 2.6, which produces an O2-substituted (1,3)-β-d-glucan exopolysaccharide only synthesised
[...] Read more.
Bacterial exopolysaccharides produced by lactic acid bacteria are of increasing interest in the food industry, since they might enhance the technological and functional properties of some edible matrices. In this work, Pediococcus parvulus 2.6, which produces an O2-substituted (1,3)-β-d-glucan exopolysaccharide only synthesised by bacteria, was proposed as a starter culture for the production of three cereal-based fermented foods. The obtained fermented matrices were naturally bio-fortified in microbial β-glucans, and used to investigate the prebiotic potential of the bacterial exopolysaccharide by analysing the impact on the survival of a probiotic Lactobacillus plantarum strain under starvation and gastrointestinal simulated conditions. All of the assays were performed by using as control of the P. parvulus 2.6’s performance, the isogenic β-glucan non-producing 2.6NR strain. Our results showed a differential capability of P. parvulus to ferment the cereal flours. During the fermentation step, the β-glucans produced were specifically quantified and their concentration correlated with an increased viscosity of the products. The survival of the model probiotic L. plantarum WCFS1 was improved by the presence of the bacterial β-glucans in oat and rice fermented foods under starvation conditions. The probiotic bacteria showed a significantly higher viability when submitted to a simulated intestinal stress in the oat matrix fermented by the 2.6 strain. Therefore, the cereal flours were a suitable substrate for in situ bio-fortification with the bacterial β-glucan, and these matrices could be used as carriers to enhance the beneficial properties of probiotic bacteria. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Glucan: New Perspectives on Biochemistry and Application)
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Open AccessReview Human Chorionic Gonadotropin and Breast Cancer
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1587; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071587
Received: 13 March 2017 / Revised: 17 July 2017 / Accepted: 17 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1261 | PDF Full-text (224 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Breast cancer is well known as a malignancy being strongly influenced by female steroids. Pregnancy is a protective factor against breast cancer. Human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) is a candidate hormone which could mediate this antitumoral effect of pregnancy. For this review article, all
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Breast cancer is well known as a malignancy being strongly influenced by female steroids. Pregnancy is a protective factor against breast cancer. Human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) is a candidate hormone which could mediate this antitumoral effect of pregnancy. For this review article, all original research articles on the role of HCG in breast cancer were considered, which are listed in PubMed database and were written in English. The role of HCG in breast cancer seems to be a paradox. Placental heterodimeric HCG acts as a protective agent by imprinting a permanent genomic signature of the mammary gland determining a refractory condition to malignant transformation which is characterized by cellular differentiation, apoptosis and growth inhibition. On the other hand, ectopic expression of β-HCG in various cancer entities is associated with poor prognosis due to its tumor-promoting function. Placental HCG and ectopically expressed β-HCG exert opposite effects on breast tumorigenesis. Therefore, mimicking pregnancy by treatment with HCG is suggested as a strategy for breast cancer prevention, whereas targeting β-HCG expressing tumor cells seems to be an option for breast cancer therapy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue hCG—An Endocrine, Regulator of Gestation and Cancer)
Open AccessReview The Role of Tumor Microenvironment in Chemoresistance: To Survive, Keep Your Enemies Closer
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1586; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071586
Received: 3 July 2017 / Revised: 16 July 2017 / Accepted: 19 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
Cited by 22 | Viewed by 1967 | PDF Full-text (3385 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Chemoresistance is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in cancer and it continues to be a challenge in cancer treatment. Chemoresistance is influenced by genetic and epigenetic alterations which affect drug uptake, metabolism and export of drugs at the cellular levels. While
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Chemoresistance is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in cancer and it continues to be a challenge in cancer treatment. Chemoresistance is influenced by genetic and epigenetic alterations which affect drug uptake, metabolism and export of drugs at the cellular levels. While most research has focused on tumor cell autonomous mechanisms of chemoresistance, the tumor microenvironment has emerged as a key player in the development of chemoresistance and in malignant progression, thereby influencing the development of novel therapies in clinical oncology. It is not surprising that the study of the tumor microenvironment is now considered to be as important as the study of tumor cells. Recent advances in technological and analytical methods, especially ‘omics’ technologies, has made it possible to identify specific targets in tumor cells and within the tumor microenvironment to eradicate cancer. Tumors need constant support from previously ‘unsupportive’ microenvironments. Novel therapeutic strategies that inhibit such microenvironmental support to tumor cells would reduce chemoresistance and tumor relapse. Such strategies can target stromal cells, proteins released by stromal cells and non-cellular components such as the extracellular matrix (ECM) within the tumor microenvironment. Novel in vitro tumor biology models that recapitulate the in vivo tumor microenvironment such as multicellular tumor spheroids, biomimetic scaffolds and tumor organoids are being developed and are increasing our understanding of cancer cell-microenvironment interactions. This review offers an analysis of recent developments on the role of the tumor microenvironment in the development of chemoresistance and the strategies to overcome microenvironment-mediated chemoresistance. We propose a systematic analysis of the relationship between tumor cells and their respective tumor microenvironments and our data show that, to survive, cancer cells interact closely with tumor microenvironment components such as mesenchymal stem cells and the extracellular matrix. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tumor Microenvironment)
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Open AccessArticle Investigating the Influence of Magnesium Ions on p53–DNA Binding Using Atomic Force Microscopy
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1585; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071585
Received: 15 June 2017 / Revised: 10 July 2017 / Accepted: 18 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
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Abstract
p53 is a tumor suppressor protein that plays a significant role in apoptosis and senescence, preserving genomic stability, and preventing oncogene expression. Metal ions, such as magnesium and zinc ions, have important influences on p53–DNA interactions for stabilizing the structure of the protein
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p53 is a tumor suppressor protein that plays a significant role in apoptosis and senescence, preserving genomic stability, and preventing oncogene expression. Metal ions, such as magnesium and zinc ions, have important influences on p53–DNA interactions for stabilizing the structure of the protein and enhancing its affinity to DNA. In the present study, we systematically investigated the interaction of full length human protein p53 with DNA in metal ion solution by atomic force microscopy (AFM). The p53–DNA complexes at various p53 concentrations were scanned by AFM and their images are used to measure the dissociation constant of p53–DNA binding by a statistical method. We found that the dissociation constant of p53 binding DNA is 328.02 nmol/L in physiological buffer conditions. The influence of magnesium ions on p53–DNA binding was studied by AFM at various ion strengths through visualization. We found that magnesium ions significantly stimulate the binding of the protein to DNA in a sequence-independent manner, different from that stimulated by zinc. Furthermore, the high concentrations of magnesium ions can promote p53 aggregation and even lead to the formation of self-assembly networks of DNA and p53 proteins. We propose an aggregation and self-assembly model based on the present observation and discuss its biological meaning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Biophysics)
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Open AccessReview DNA Damage Tolerance by Eukaryotic DNA Polymerase and Primase PrimPol
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1584; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071584
Received: 26 June 2017 / Revised: 14 July 2017 / Accepted: 16 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1289 | PDF Full-text (1254 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
PrimPol is a human deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) polymerase that also possesses primase activity and is involved in DNA damage tolerance, the prevention of genome instability and mitochondrial DNA maintenance. In this review, we focus on recent advances in biochemical and crystallographic studies of
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PrimPol is a human deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) polymerase that also possesses primase activity and is involved in DNA damage tolerance, the prevention of genome instability and mitochondrial DNA maintenance. In this review, we focus on recent advances in biochemical and crystallographic studies of PrimPol, as well as in identification of new protein-protein interaction partners. Furthermore, we discuss the possible functions of PrimPol in both the nucleus and the mitochondria. Full article
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Open AccessReview Dietary Modulation of Oxidative Stress in Alzheimer’s Disease
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1583; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071583
Received: 16 June 2017 / Revised: 3 July 2017 / Accepted: 12 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2445 | PDF Full-text (759 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Cells generate unpaired electrons, typically via oxygen- or nitrogen-based by-products during normal cellular respiration and under stressed situations. These pro-oxidant molecules are highly unstable and may oxidize surrounding cellular macromolecules. Under normal conditions, the reactive oxygen or nitrogen species can be beneficial to
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Cells generate unpaired electrons, typically via oxygen- or nitrogen-based by-products during normal cellular respiration and under stressed situations. These pro-oxidant molecules are highly unstable and may oxidize surrounding cellular macromolecules. Under normal conditions, the reactive oxygen or nitrogen species can be beneficial to cell survival and function by destroying and degrading pathogens or antigens. However, excessive generation and accumulation of the reactive pro-oxidant species over time can damage proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, and nucleic acids. Over time, this oxidative stress can contribute to a range of aging-related degenerative diseases such as cancer, diabetes, macular degeneration, and Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s diseases. It is well accepted that natural compounds, including vitamins A, C, and E, β-carotene, and minerals found in fruits and vegetables are powerful anti-oxidants that offer health benefits against several different oxidative stress induced degenerative diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease (AD). There is increasing interest in developing anti-oxidative therapeutics to prevent AD. There are contradictory and inconsistent reports on the possible benefits of anti-oxidative supplements; however, fruits and vegetables enriched with multiple anti-oxidants (e.g., flavonoids and polyphenols) and minerals may be highly effective in attenuating the harmful effects of oxidative stress. As the physiological activation of either protective or destructive pro-oxidant behavior remains relatively unclear, it is not straightforward to relate the efficacy of dietary anti-oxidants in disease prevention. Here, we review oxidative stress mediated toxicity associated with AD and highlight the modulatory roles of natural dietary anti-oxidants in preventing AD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Correlation between Nutrition, Oxidative Stress and Disease)
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Open AccessHypothesis A Membrane-Fusion Model That Exploits a β-to-α Transition in the Hydrophobic Domains of Syntaxin 1A and Synaptobrevin 2
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1582; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071582
Received: 11 June 2017 / Revised: 14 July 2017 / Accepted: 18 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
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Abstract
Parallel zippering of the SNARE domains of syntaxin 1A/B, SNAP-25, and VAMP/synaptobrevin 2 is widely regarded as supplying the driving force for exocytotic events at nerve terminals and elsewhere. However, in spite of intensive research, no consensus has been reached concerning the molecular
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Parallel zippering of the SNARE domains of syntaxin 1A/B, SNAP-25, and VAMP/synaptobrevin 2 is widely regarded as supplying the driving force for exocytotic events at nerve terminals and elsewhere. However, in spite of intensive research, no consensus has been reached concerning the molecular mechanism by which these SNARE proteins catalyze membrane fusion. As an alternative to SNARE-based models, a scenario was developed in which synaptotagmin 1 (or, 2) can serve as a template to guide lipid movements that underlie fast, synchronous exocytosis at nerve terminals. This “dyad model” advanced a novel proposal concerning the membrane disposition of the palmitoylated, cysteine-rich region of these synaptotagmins. Unexpectedly, it now emerges that a similar principle can be exploited to reveal how the hydrophobic, carboxyl-terminal domains of syntaxin 1A and synaptobrevin 2 can perturb membrane structure at the interface between a docked synaptic vesicle and the plasma membrane. These “β-to-α transition” models will be compared and contrasted with other proposals for how macromolecules are thought to intervene to drive membrane fusion. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Membrane Fusion)
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Open AccessArticle Combination Therapy of PEG-HM-3 and Methotrexate Retards Adjuvant-Induced Arthritis
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1538; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071538
Received: 8 June 2017 / Revised: 10 July 2017 / Accepted: 11 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1504 | PDF Full-text (5371 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
At present, the early phenomenon of inflammatory angiogenesis is rarely studied in Rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Previous research found that PEG-HM-3, an integrin inhibitor, possessed anti-angiogenesis and anti-rheumatic activity. In this study, the advantages of inhibiting angiogenesis and immune cell adhesion and migration, as
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At present, the early phenomenon of inflammatory angiogenesis is rarely studied in Rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Previous research found that PEG-HM-3, an integrin inhibitor, possessed anti-angiogenesis and anti-rheumatic activity. In this study, the advantages of inhibiting angiogenesis and immune cell adhesion and migration, as well as the benefits of anti-arthritis effects, were evaluated using a combination of PEG-HM-3 and methotrexate (MTX). In vitro, spleen cell proliferation and the levels of tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α) in macrophage supernatant were assessed. Hind paw edema, arthritis index, clinical score, body weight and immunohistochemistry (IHC) of the spleen, thymus, and joint cavity were evaluated in vivo in adjuvant-induced arthritis rats. Joints of the left hind paws were imaged by X-ray. The expression of the toll-like receptor 4 (TLR-4) protein was assessed in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced synoviocytes. PEG-HM-3 combined with MTX significantly reduced primary and secondary swelling of the hind paws, the arthritis index, the clinical score and bone erosion. The results of IHC showed that the levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6) in spleens and the levels of TNF-α, CD31 (cluster of differentiation 31), and CD105 in the joint cavity were decreased. The body weight of rats was maintained during combination therapy. Ankle cavity integrity, and bone erosion and deformity were improved in combination treatment. The expression of TLR-4 was significantly reduced with combination treatment in rat synoviocytes. Co-suppression of both inflammation and angiogenesis in arthritis was achieved in this design with combination therapy. The activity of nuclear transcription factor (NF-κB) and the expression of inflammatory factors were down regulated via integrin αvβ3 and TLR-4 signaling pathways. In the future, the application of this combination can be a candidate in early and mid-term RA therapy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Integrins and Human Pathologies)
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Open AccessArticle In Vitro Preservation of Transgenic Tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) Plants Overexpressing the Stress-Related SlAREB1 Transcription Factor
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1477; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071477
Received: 18 May 2017 / Revised: 11 June 2017 / Accepted: 1 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1448 | PDF Full-text (5938 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
In vitro preservation of transgenic tomato lines overexpressing the stress-responsive transcription factor SlAREB1 was studied by using slow growth and cryopreservation techniques. Slow growth preservation was performed by using different concentrations of sucrose (0, 100, 200, 300 mm) and abscisic acid (0, 4,
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In vitro preservation of transgenic tomato lines overexpressing the stress-responsive transcription factor SlAREB1 was studied by using slow growth and cryopreservation techniques. Slow growth preservation was performed by using different concentrations of sucrose (0, 100, 200, 300 mm) and abscisic acid (0, 4, 8, 12 μm) in Murashige and Skoog (MS) media, while cryopreservation was conducted by using encapsulation dehydration, V-cryoplates and seeds. Significant differences were observed between tested lines grown on MS media supplemented with 200 mm sucrose where transgenic lines overexpressing SlAREB1 showed improved growth when compared with negative control. The addition of abscisic acid (ABA) to the preservation media affected negatively transgenic lines growth and development when compared with ABA-free media. In encapsulation dehydration, non-cryopreserved transgenic lines overexpressing SlAREB1 pretreated in 0.8 M sucrose for 1 day and subjected to different dehydration periods showed significantly higher survival percentages when compared with negative control. For V-cryoplates technique, cryopreserved transgenic lines overexpressing SlAREB1 treated in 0.3 M sucrose for 3 days with or without cold acclimatization showed significantly higher survival percentages when compared with the negative control. Seed cryopreservation was performed successfully with a clear reduction in germination percentage in transgenic lines overexpressing high levels of SlAREB1. In conclusion, transgenic tomato lines overexpressing SlAREB1 were found to improve tolerance against different abiotic stresses associated with different in vitro preservation protocols. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Lack of Association between Hepatitis C Virus core Gene Variation 70/91aa and Insulin Resistance
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1444; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071444
Received: 31 March 2017 / Revised: 17 May 2017 / Accepted: 24 May 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
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Abstract
The role of hepatitis C virus (HCV) in insulin resistance (IR) is not fully understood. The aim of this study was to determine the impact of amino acid (aa) substitutions in the core region of HCV according to IR and to identify clinical
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The role of hepatitis C virus (HCV) in insulin resistance (IR) is not fully understood. The aim of this study was to determine the impact of amino acid (aa) substitutions in the core region of HCV according to IR and to identify clinical and laboratory associations. Ninety-two treatment-naive HCV patients were recruited to determine laboratory data and blood cell count. IR was determined using Homeostasis Model Assessment (HOMA) index where IR was defined as HOMA ≥2. HCV RNA load and genotype were determined by Abbott Real time HCV. HCV core region was determined by direct nucleotide sequencing. Bivariate analysis was conducted using HOMA IR ≥2 as a dependent factor. IR prevalence was 43.5% (n = 40), vitamin D sufficiency was found in 76.1% (n = 70) and 72.8% (n = 67) had advanced liver fibrosis. In the bivariate analyses, elevated values of γGT (p = 0.024) and fibrosis staging (p = 0.004) were associated with IR, but IR was not related to core mutations. The presence of glutamine in position 70 was associated with low vitamin D concentration (p = 0.005). In the multivariate analysis, no variable was independently associated with HOMA-IR. In conclusion, lack of association between IR and HCV core mutations in positions 70 and 91 suggests that genetic variability of this region has little impact on IR. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hepatitis Virus Infection and Research)
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Open AccessArticle Functional Implications of MicroRNAs in Crohn’s Disease Revealed by Integrating MicroRNA and Messenger RNA Expression Profiling
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1580; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071580
Received: 17 June 2017 / Revised: 12 July 2017 / Accepted: 16 July 2017 / Published: 20 July 2017
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1242 | PDF Full-text (2842 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Crohn’s disease (CD) is a debilitating inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) that emerges due to the influence of genetic and environmental factors. microRNAs (miRNAs) have been identified in the tissue and sera of IBD patients and may play an important role in the induction
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Crohn’s disease (CD) is a debilitating inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) that emerges due to the influence of genetic and environmental factors. microRNAs (miRNAs) have been identified in the tissue and sera of IBD patients and may play an important role in the induction of IBD. Our study aimed to identify differentially expressed miRNAs and miRNAs with the ability to alter transcriptome activity by comparing inflamed tissue samples with their non-inflamed counterparts. We studied changes in miRNA–mRNA interactions associated with CD by examining their differential co-expression relative to normal mucosa from the same patients. Correlation changes between the two conditions were incorporated into scores of predefined gene sets to identify biological processes with altered miRNA-mediated control. Our study identified 28 miRNAs differentially expressed (p-values < 0.01), of which 14 are up-regulated. Notably, our differential co-expression analysis highlights microRNAs (i.e., miR-4284, miR-3194 and miR-21) that have known functional interactions with key mechanisms implicated in IBD. Most of these miRNAs cannot be detected by differential expression analysis that do not take into account miRNA–mRNA interactions. The identification of differential miRNA–mRNA co-expression patterns will facilitate the investigation of the miRNA-mediated molecular mechanisms underlying CD pathogenesis and could suggest novel drug targets for validation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry)
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Open AccessArticle Characterization of the Dioscorin Gene Family in Dioscorea alata Reveals a Role in Tuber Development and Environmental Response
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1579; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071579
Received: 6 June 2017 / Revised: 16 July 2017 / Accepted: 17 July 2017 / Published: 20 July 2017
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Abstract
Dioscorin is one of the major soluble proteins in yam tubers. Unlike other well-known plant storage proteins, such as patatin and sporamin, dioscorin is argued for its function as storage proteins, and the molecular mechanisms underlying its expressional complexity are little understood. In
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Dioscorin is one of the major soluble proteins in yam tubers. Unlike other well-known plant storage proteins, such as patatin and sporamin, dioscorin is argued for its function as storage proteins, and the molecular mechanisms underlying its expressional complexity are little understood. In this study, we isolated five dioscorin genes from Dioscorea alata L., comprising three class A (Da-dio1, -3 and -4) and two class B (Da-dio2 and -5) isoforms. Expressions of all dioscorin genes gradually decreased in mother tubers during yam sprouting and regrowth. On the other hand, all dioscorin genes accumulated transcripts progressively with tuber development in new tubers, with Da-dio5 being the most prominent isoform. In yam leaves, the expressions of Da-dio5 were up-regulated by the treatments of five phytohormones (gibberellic acid, salicylic acid, indole-3-acetic acid, abscisic acid, and ethylene), and three abiotic stresses (high-temperature, low-temperature and drought). To further elucidate the regulatory mechanisms of Da-dio5 expressions, transgenic Arabidopsis plants harboring the Da-dio5 promoter-β-glucuronidase (GUS) fusion were generated. GUS staining showed that expressions of the Da-dio5 promoter were detected mainly in the shoot apical meristem (SAM) and hypocotyls, and enhanced by the treatments of the five hormones, and the three abiotic stresses mentioned above. These results suggest diverse roles of Da-dio5 in yam sprouting, regrowth, and tuberization, as well as in response to enviromental cues. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle The Alternaria alternata Mycotoxin Alternariol Suppresses Lipopolysaccharide-Induced Inflammation
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1577; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071577
Received: 1 May 2017 / Revised: 30 June 2017 / Accepted: 8 July 2017 / Published: 20 July 2017
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1573 | PDF Full-text (2596 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The Alternaria mycotoxins alternariol (AOH) and alternariol monomethyl ether (AME) have been shown to possess genotoxic and cytotoxic properties. In this study, the ability of AOH and AME to modulate innate immunity in the human bronchial epithelial cell line (BEAS-2B) and mouse macrophage
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The Alternaria mycotoxins alternariol (AOH) and alternariol monomethyl ether (AME) have been shown to possess genotoxic and cytotoxic properties. In this study, the ability of AOH and AME to modulate innate immunity in the human bronchial epithelial cell line (BEAS-2B) and mouse macrophage cell line (RAW264.7) were investigated. During these studies, it was discovered that AOH and to a lesser extent AME potently suppressed lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced innate immune responses in a dose-dependent manner. Treatment of BEAS-2B cells with AOH resulted in morphological changes including a detached pattern of growth as well as elongated arms. AOH/AME-related immune suppression and morphological changes were linked to the ability of these mycotoxins to cause cell cycle arrest at the G2/M phase. This model was also used to investigate the AOH/AME mechanism of immune suppression in relation to aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR). AhR was not found to be important for the immunosuppressive properties of AOH/AME, but appeared important for the low levels of cell death observed in BEAS-2B cells. Full article
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Open AccessReview Interaction of Mitochondria with the Endoplasmic Reticulum and Plasma Membrane in Calcium Homeostasis, Lipid Trafficking and Mitochondrial Structure
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1576; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071576
Received: 28 May 2017 / Revised: 10 July 2017 / Accepted: 13 July 2017 / Published: 20 July 2017
Cited by 18 | Viewed by 2983 | PDF Full-text (3198 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Studying organelles in isolation has been proven to be indispensable for deciphering the underlying mechanisms of molecular cell biology. However, observing organelles in intact cells with the use of microscopic techniques reveals a new set of different junctions and contact sites between them
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Studying organelles in isolation has been proven to be indispensable for deciphering the underlying mechanisms of molecular cell biology. However, observing organelles in intact cells with the use of microscopic techniques reveals a new set of different junctions and contact sites between them that contribute to the control and regulation of various cellular processes, such as calcium and lipid exchange or structural reorganization of the mitochondrial network. In recent years, many studies focused their attention on the structure and function of contacts between mitochondria and other organelles. From these studies, findings emerged showing that these contacts are involved in various processes, such as lipid synthesis and trafficking, modulation of mitochondrial morphology, endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, apoptosis, autophagy, inflammation and Ca 2 + handling. In this review, we focused on the physical interactions of mitochondria with the endoplasmic reticulum and plasma membrane and summarized present knowledge regarding the role of mitochondria-associated membranes in calcium homeostasis and lipid metabolism. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mitochondria Crosstalks with other Organelles in Pathophysiology)
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Open AccessArticle The Effect of N-Terminal Cyclization on the Function of the HIV Entry Inhibitor 5P12-RANTES
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1575; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071575
Received: 1 July 2017 / Revised: 12 July 2017 / Accepted: 14 July 2017 / Published: 20 July 2017
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1296 | PDF Full-text (1119 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Despite effective treatment for those living with Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), there are still two million new infections each year. Protein-based HIV entry inhibitors, being highly effective and specific, could be used to protect people from initial infection. One of the most promising
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Despite effective treatment for those living with Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), there are still two million new infections each year. Protein-based HIV entry inhibitors, being highly effective and specific, could be used to protect people from initial infection. One of the most promising of these for clinical use is 5P12-RANTES, a variant of the chemokine RANTES/CCL5. The N-terminal amino acid of 5P12-RANTES is glutamine (Gln; called Q0), a residue that is prone to spontaneous cyclization when at the N-terminus of a protein. It is not known how this cyclization affects the potency of the inhibitor or whether cyclization is necessary for the function of the protein, although the N-terminal region of RANTES has been shown to be critical for receptor interactions, with even small changes having a large effect. We have studied the kinetics of cyclization of 5P12-RANTES as well as N-terminal variations of the protein that either produce an identical cyclized terminus (Glu0) or that cannot similarly cyclize (Asn0, Phe0, Ile0, and Leu0). We find that the half life for N-terminal cyclization of Gln is roughly 20 h at pH 7.3 at 37 °C. However, our results show that cyclization is not necessary for the potency of this protein and that several replacement terminal amino acids produce nearly-equally potent HIV inhibitors while remaining CC chemokine receptor 5 (CCR5) antagonists. This work has ramifications for the production of active 5P12-RANTES for use in the clinic, while also opening the possibility of developing other inhibitors by varying the N-terminus of the protein. Full article
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