Club cells are known to function as regional progenitor cells to repair the bronchiolar epithelium in response to lung damage. By lineage tracing in mice, we have shown recently that club cells also give rise to alveolar type 2 cells (- AT2s) and alveolar type 1 cells (- AT1s) during the repair of the damaged alveolar epithelium. Here, we show that when highly purified, anatomically and phenotypically confirmed club cells are seeded in 3- dimensional culture either in bulk or individually, they proliferate and differentiate into both AT2- and AT1- like cells and form alveolar- like structures. This differentiation was further confirmed by transcriptomic analysis of freshly isolated club cells and their cultured progeny. Freshly isolated club cells express Sca- 1 and integrin alpha 6, markers commonly used to characterize lung stem/progenitor cells. Together, current study for the first time isolated highly purified club cells for in vitro study and demonstrated club cells' capacity to differentiate into alveolar epithelial cells at the single- cell level.
Ten novel loci have been found to be associated with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) susceptibility by a recent genome-wide association study conducted in Europeans. To test their disease associations and genetic similarities/differences in Asians and Europeans, we genotyped the 10 novel single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and performed an association study. A Chinese cohort from Northern China was recruited as the discovery population, and three East Asian cohorts were included for independent replication. The 10 SNPs were genotyped using TaqMan allele discrimination assays. To prioritize the associated SNPs, different layers of the public functional data were integrated. Among the 10 SNPs, rs564799 in IL12A was shared in both ethnicities (P-adjust = 5.91 x 10(-4); odds ratio = 1.22, 1.10-1.35). We also confirmed the reported polymorphism rs7726414 in TCF7 in the current study (P-adjust = 4.12 x 10(-8); odds ratio = 1.46, 1.28-1.66). The directions and magnitudes of the allelic effects for most of the 10 SNPs were comparable between Europeans and Asians. However, higher risk allele frequencies and population-attributable risk percentages were observed in Asians than in Europeans. We also identified the most likely functional SNPs at each locus. In conclusion, both genetic similarities and differences across ethnicities have been observed, providing further evidence for a genetic basis of the high incidence of SLE in Asian ancestry.
The actin cytoskeleton is an attractive target for bacterial toxins. The ADP-ribosyltransferase TccC3 from the insect bacterial pathogen Photorhabdus luminescence modifies actin to force its aggregation. We intended to transport the catalytic part of this toxin preferentially into cancer cells using a toxin transporter (Protective antigen, PA) which was redirected to Epidermal Growth Factor Receptors (EGFR) or to human EGF receptors 2 (HER2), which are overexpressed in several cancer cells. Protective antigen of anthrax toxin forms a pore through which the two catalytic parts (lethal factor and edema factor) or other proteins can be transported into mammalian cells. Here, we used PA as a double mutant (N682A, D683A; mPA) which cannot bind to the two natural anthrax receptors. Each mutated monomer is fused either to EGF or to an affibody directed against the human EGF receptor 2 (HER2). We established a cellular model system composed of two cell lines representing HER2 overexpressing esophageal adenocarcinomas (EACs) and EGFR overexpressing esophageal squamous cell carcinomas (ESCCs). We studied the specificity and efficiency of the re-directed anthrax pore for transport of TccC3 toxin and established Photorhabdus luminescence TccC3 as a toxin suitable for the development of a targeted toxin selectively killing cancer cells.
Intertidal organisms, especially the sessile species, often experience long-term periodic air exposure during their lives. Learning the biochemical and physiological responses of intertidal organisms to long-term periodic air exposure and the relationship to duration of air exposure provides insight into adaptation to this variably stressful environment. We studied the Manila clam, Ruditapes philippinarum, an important species in world aquaculture, as a model to evaluate survival, growth, lipid composition, oxygen consumption, oxidative damage, and antioxidant enzyme activity in relation to the duration of air exposure in a long-term (60 days) laboratory study of varying durations of periodic emersion and re-immersion. Our results show: (1) clams undergoing a longer period of air exposure had lower survival and growth compared to those given a shorter exposure, (2) levels of oxidative damage and activities of antioxidant enzymes were higher in all air exposure treatments, but did not increase with duration of air exposure, and (3) the content of docosahexaenoic acid increased with duration of air exposure. Our results can largely be interpreted in the context of the energy expenditure by the clams caused by aerobic metabolism during the daily cycle of emersion and re-immersion and the roles of docosahexaenoic acid against oxidative stress.
We propose a circular polarizer with beamforming features based on frequency selective surface (FSS), in which a modified anchor-shaped unit cell is used to reach the circular polarizer function. The beamforming characteristic is realized by a particular design of the unit-phase distribution, which is obtained by varying the scale of the unit cell. Instead of using plane waves, a horn antenna is designed to feed the phase-variant FSS. The proposed two-layer FSS is fabricated and measured to verify the design. The measured results show that the proposed structure can convert the linearly polarized waves to circularly polarized waves. Compared with the feeding horn antenna, the transmitted beam of the FSS-added horn is 14.43 degrees broader in one direction, while 3.77 degrees narrower in the orthogonal direction. To our best knowledge, this is the first time to realize circular polarizer with beamforming as the extra function based on FSS, which is promising in satellite and communication systems for potential applications due to its simple design and good performance.
Thiazolidinediones (TZD) function as potent anti-diabetic drugs through their direct action on the nuclear receptor peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPAR gamma), but their therapeutic benefits are compromised by severe side effects. To address this concern, here we developed a potent "hit" compound, VSP-51, which is a novel selective PPAR gamma-modulating ligand with improved therapeutic profiles in vitro compared to the multi-billion dollar TZD drug rosiglitazone (Rosi). Unlike Rosi, VSP-51 is a partial agonist of PPAR gamma with improved insulin sensitivity due to its ability to bind PPAR gamma with high affinity without stimulating adipocyte differentiation and the expression of adipogenesis-related genes. We have determined the crystal structure of the PPAR gamma ligand-binding domain (LBD) in complex with VSP-51, which revealed a unique mode of binding for VSP-51 and provides the molecular basis for the discrimination between VSP-51 from TZDs and other ligands such as telmisartan, SR1663 and SR1664. Taken together, our findings demonstrate that: a) VSP-51 can serve as a promising candidate for antidiabetic drug discovery; and b) provide a rational basis for the development of future pharmacological agents targeting PPAR gamma with advantages over current TZD drugs.
Alcoholic liver disease (ALD) is an important worldwide public health issue with no satisfying treatment available since now. Here we explore the effects of recombinant human cytoglobin (rhCygb) on chronic alcohol-induced liver injury and the underlying mechanisms. In vivo studies showed that rhCygb was able to ameliorate alcohol-induced liver injury, significantly reversed increased serum index (ALT, AST, TG, TC and LDL-C) and decreased serum HDL-C. Histopathology observation of the liver of rats treated with rhCygb confirmed the biochemical data. Furthermore, rhCygb significantly inhibited Kupffer cells (KCs) proliferation and TNF-alpha expression in LPS-induced KCs. rhCygb also inhibited LPS-induced NADPH oxidase activity and ROS, NO and O-2 center dot(-) generation. These results collectively indicate that rhCygb exert the protective effect on chronic alcohol-induced liver injury through suppression of KC activation and oxidative stress. In view of its anti-oxidative stress and anti-inflammatory features, rhCygb might be a promising candidate for development as a therapeutic agent against ALD.
Susceptibility to motion sickness (MS) varies considerably among humans. However, the cause of such variation is unclear. Here, we used a classical genetic approach to obtain mouse strains highly sensitive and resistant to MS (SMS and RMS). Proteomics analysis revealed substantially lower swiprosin-1 expression in SMS mouse brains. Inducing MS via rotary stimulation decreased swiprosin-1 in the mouse brains. Swiprosin-1 knockout mice were much more sensitive to motion disturbance. Immunohistochemistry revealed strong swiprosin-1 expression in the vestibular nuclei (VN). Over-expressing swiprosin-1 in the VN of SMS mice decreased MS susceptibility. Down-regulating swiprosin-1 in the VN of RMS mice by RNAi increased MS susceptibility. Additional in vivo experiments revealed decreased swiprosin-1 expression by glutamate via the NMDA receptor. Glutamate increased neuronal excitability in SMS or swiprosin-1 knockout mice more prominently than in RMS or wild-type mice. These results indicate that swiprosin-1 in the VN is a critical determinant of the susceptibility to MS.
Bioactive gibberellins (GAs) are essential phytohormones involved in the regulation of many aspects of plant development. GA receptors are crucial in GA signal transduction in plants. The GA receptor GoGID1 promotes plant elongation and improves biomass production when ectopically expressed in tobacco. Here, we discovered that GoGID1 can interact with the DELLA proteins of Arabidopsis in the presence of gibberellic acid. GoGID1 partially or completely functionally rescued the phenotypes of the Arabidopsis double-mutants atgid1a/atgid1c and atgid1a/atgid1b. The overexpression of GoGID1 led to increases in plant height and biomass production in transgenic Arabidopsis plants. The GoGID1 gene enhanced GA sensitivity of the transgenic plants. More importantly, transgenic alfalfa plants overexpressing GoGID1 exhibited increased growth rates, heights and biomass and produced larger leaves when compared with the control plants. Thus, GoGID1 functions as a GA receptor, playing multiple roles in plant growth and development. The GoGID1 gene has the potential to be used in the genetic engineering of forage crops for biomass improvement.
Waardenburg syndrome type 4 (WS4) or Waardenburg-Shah syndrome is a rare genetic disorder with a prevalence of <1/1,000,000 and characterized by the association of congenital sensorineural hearing loss, pigmentary abnormalities, and intestinal aganglionosis. There are three types of WS4 (WS4A-C) caused by mutations in endothelin receptor type B, endothelin 3, and SRY-box 10 (SOX10), respectively. This study investigated a genetic mutation in a Chinese family with one WS4 patient in order to improve genetic counselling. Genomic DNA was extracted, and mutation analysis of the three WS4 related genes was performed using Sanger sequencing. We detected a de novo heterozygous deletion mutation [c. 1333delT (p. Ser445Glnfs*57)] in SOX10 in the patient; however, this mutation was absent in the unaffected parents and 40 ethnicity matched healthy controls. Subsequent phylogenetic analysis and three-dimensional modelling of the SOX10 protein confirmed that the c. 1333delT heterozygous mutation was pathogenic, indicating that this mutation might constitute a candidate disease-causing mutation.
Previously, we found that arsenite (As-III) oxidation could improve the generation of ATP/NADH to support the growth of Agrobacterium tumefaciens GW4. In this study, we found that aioE is induced by As-III and located in the arsenic island near the As-III oxidase genes aioBA and co-transcripted with the arsenic resistant genes arsR1-arsC1-arsC2-acr3-1. AioE belongs to TrkA family corresponding the electron transport function with the generation of NADH and H+. An aioE in-frame deletion strain showed a null As-III oxidation and a reduced As-III resistance, while a cytC mutant only reduced As-III oxidation efficiency. With As-III, aioE was directly related to the increase of NADH, while cytC was essential for ATP generation. In addition, cyclic voltammetry analysis showed that the redox potential (ORP) of AioBA and AioE were + 0.297 mV vs. NHE and + 0.255 mV vs. NHE, respectively. The ORP gradient is AioBA > AioE > CytC (+ 0.217 similar to + 0.251 mV vs. NHE), which infers that electron may transfer from AioBA to CytC via AioE. The results indicate that AioE may act as a novel As-III oxidation electron transporter associated with NADH generation. Since As-III oxidation contributes As-III detoxification, the essential of AioE for As-III resistance is also reasonable.
Hyperglycemia (HG) stimulates the production of reactive oxygen species in the heart through activation of NADPH oxidase 2 (NOX2). This production is independent of glucose metabolism but requires sodium/glucose cotransporters (SGLT). Seven SGLT isoforms (SGLT1 to 6 and sodium-myoinositol cotransporter-1, SMIT1) are known, although their expression and function in the heart remain elusive. We investigated these 7 isoforms and found that only SGLT1 and SMIT1 were expressed in mouse, rat and human hearts. In cardiomyocytes, galactose (transported through SGLT1) did not activate NOX2. Accordingly, SGLT1 deficiency did not prevent HG-induced NOX2 activation, ruling it out in the cellular response to HG. In contrast, myo-inositol (transported through SMIT1) reproduced the toxic effects of HG. SMIT1 overexpression exacerbated glucotoxicity and sensitized cardiomyocytes to HG, whereas its deletion prevented HG-induced NOX2 activation. In conclusion, our results show that heart SMIT1 senses HG and triggers NOX2 activation. This could participate in the redox signaling in hyperglycemic heart and contribute to the pathophysiology of diabetic cardiomyopathy.
Multifunctional RNA helicase DDX3 participates in HCV infection, one of the major causes of hepatic steatosis. Here, we investigated the role of DDX3 in hepatic lipid metabolism. We found that HCV infection severely reduced DDX3 expression. Analysis of intracellular triglyceride and secreted ApoB indicated that lipid accumulations were increased while ApoB secretion were decreased in DDX3 knockdown HuH7 and HepG2 cell lines. Down-regulation of DDX3 significantly decreased protein and transcript expression of microsomal triglyceride transfer protein (MTP), a key regulator of liver lipid homeostasis. Moreover, DDX3 interacted with hepatocyte nuclear factor 4 (HNF4) and small heterodimer partner (SHP), and synergistically up-regulated HNF4-mediated transactivation of MTP promoter via its ATPase activity. Further investigation revealed that DDX3 interacted with CBP/p300 and increased the promoter binding affinity of HNF4 by enhancing HNF4 acetylation. Additionally, DDX3 partially relieved the SHP-mediated suppression on MTP promoter by competing with SHP for HNF4 binding which disrupted the inactive HNF4/SHP heterodimer while promoted the formation of the active HNF4 homodimer. Collectively, these results imply that DDX3 regulates MTP gene expression and lipid homeostasis through interplay with HNF4 and SHP, which may also reveal a novel mechanism of HCV-induced steatosis.
We report a simple new approach for green preparation of gallic acid supported reduced graphene oxide encapsulated gold nanoparticles (GA-RGO/AuNPs) via one-pot hydrothermal method. The as-prepared composites were successfully characterized by using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), Raman spectroscopy, X-ray powder diffraction techniques (XRD), scanning electron microscope (SEM), high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) and elemental analysis. The GA-RGO/AuNPs modified electrode behaves as a hybrid electrode material for sensitive and selective detection of dopamine (DA) in presence of ascorbic acid (AA) and uric acid (UA). The GA-RGO/AuNPs modified electrode displays an excellent electrocatalytic activity towards the oxidation of DA and exhibits a wide linear response range over the DA concentrations from 0.01-100.3 mu M with a detection limit (LOD) of 2.6 nM based on S/N = 3. In addition, the proposed sensor could be applied for the determination of DA in human serum and urine samples for practical analysis.
Cardiovascular diseases due to atherosclerosis are the leading cause of death globally. We aimed to investigate the potentially altered gene and pathway expression in advanced peripheral atherosclerotic plaques in comparison to healthy control arteries. Gene expression analysis was performed (Illumina HumanHT-12 version 3 Expression BeadChip) for 68 advanced atherosclerotic plaques (15 aortic, 29 carotid and 24 femoral plaques) and 28 controls (left internal thoracic artery (LITA)) from Tampere Vascular Study. Dysregulation of individual genes was compared to healthy controls and between plaques from different arterial beds and Ingenuity pathway analysis was conducted on genes with a fold change (FC) > +/- 1.5 and false discovery rate (FDR) < 0.05. 787 genes were significantly differentially expressed in atherosclerotic plaques. The most up-regulated genes were osteopontin and multiple MMPs, and the most down-regulated were cell death-inducing DFFA-like effector C and A (CIDEC, CIDEA) and apolipoprotein D (FC > 20). 156 pathways were differentially expressed in atherosclerotic plaques, mostly inflammation-related, especially related with leukocyte trafficking and signaling. In artery specific plaque analysis 50.4% of canonical pathways and 41.2% GO terms differentially expressed were in common for all three arterial beds. Our results confirm the inflammatory nature of advanced atherosclerosis and show novel pathway differences between different arterial beds.