WorldWideScience

Sample records for biologically relevant pathways

  1. Genetic associations at 53 loci highlight cell types and biological pathways relevant for kidney function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pattaro, Cristian; Teumer, Alexander; Gorski, Mathias; Chu, Audrey Y; Li, Man; Mijatovic, Vladan; Garnaas, Maija; Tin, Adrienne; Sorice, Rossella; Li, Yong; Taliun, Daniel; Olden, Matthias; Foster, Meredith; Yang, Qiong; Chen, Ming-Huei; Pers, Tune H; Johnson, Andrew D; Ko, Yi-An; Fuchsberger, Christian; Tayo, Bamidele; Nalls, Michael; Feitosa, Mary F; Isaacs, Aaron; Dehghan, Abbas; d'Adamo, Pio; Adeyemo, Adebowale; Dieffenbach, Aida Karina; Zonderman, Alan B; Nolte, Ilja M; van der Most, Peter J; Wright, Alan F; Shuldiner, Alan R; Morrison, Alanna C; Hofman, Albert; Smith, Albert V; Dreisbach, Albert W; Franke, Andre; Uitterlinden, Andre G; Metspalu, Andres; Tonjes, Anke; Lupo, Antonio; Robino, Antonietta; Johansson, Åsa; Demirkan, Ayse; Kollerits, Barbara; Freedman, Barry I; Ponte, Belen; Oostra, Ben A; Paulweber, Bernhard; Krämer, Bernhard K; Mitchell, Braxton D; Buckley, Brendan M; Peralta, Carmen A; Hayward, Caroline; Helmer, Catherine; Rotimi, Charles N; Shaffer, Christian M; Müller, Christian; Sala, Cinzia; van Duijn, Cornelia M; Saint-Pierre, Aude; Ackermann, Daniel; Shriner, Daniel; Ruggiero, Daniela; Toniolo, Daniela; Lu, Yingchang; Cusi, Daniele; Czamara, Darina; Ellinghaus, David; Siscovick, David S; Ruderfer, Douglas; Gieger, Christian; Grallert, Harald; Rochtchina, Elena; Atkinson, Elizabeth J; Holliday, Elizabeth G; Boerwinkle, Eric; Salvi, Erika; Bottinger, Erwin P; Murgia, Federico; Rivadeneira, Fernando; Ernst, Florian; Kronenberg, Florian; Hu, Frank B; Navis, Gerjan J; Curhan, Gary C; Ehret, George B; Homuth, Georg; Coassin, Stefan; Thun, Gian-Andri; Pistis, Giorgio; Gambaro, Giovanni; Malerba, Giovanni; Montgomery, Grant W; Eiriksdottir, Gudny; Jacobs, Gunnar; Li, Guo; Wichmann, H-Erich; Campbell, Harry; Schmidt, Helena; Wallaschofski, Henri; Völzke, Henry; Brenner, Hermann; Kroemer, Heyo K; Kramer, Holly; Lin, Honghuang; Leach, I Mateo; Ford, Ian; Guessous, Idris; Rudan, Igor; Prokopenko, Inga; Borecki, Ingrid; Heid, Iris M; Kolcic, Ivana; Persico, Ivana; Jukema, J Wouter; Wilson, James F; Felix, Janine F; Divers, Jasmin; Lambert, Jean-Charles; Stafford, Jeanette M; Gaspoz, Jean-Michel; Smith, Jennifer A; Faul, Jessica D; Wang, Jie Jin; Ding, Jingzhong; Hirschhorn, Joel N; Attia, John; Whitfield, John B; Chalmers, John; Viikari, Jorma; Coresh, Josef; Denny, Joshua C; Karjalainen, Juha; Fernandes, Jyotika K; Endlich, Karlhans; Butterbach, Katja; Keene, Keith L; Lohman, Kurt; Portas, Laura; Launer, Lenore J; Lyytikäinen, Leo-Pekka; Yengo, Loic; Franke, Lude; Ferrucci, Luigi; Rose, Lynda M; Kedenko, Lyudmyla; Rao, Madhumathi; Struchalin, Maksim; Kleber, Marcus E; Cavalieri, Margherita; Haun, Margot; Cornelis, Marilyn C; Ciullo, Marina; Pirastu, Mario; de Andrade, Mariza; McEvoy, Mark A; Woodward, Mark; Adam, Martin; Cocca, Massimiliano; Nauck, Matthias; Imboden, Medea; Waldenberger, Melanie; Pruijm, Menno; Metzger, Marie; Stumvoll, Michael; Evans, Michele K; Sale, Michele M; Kähönen, Mika; Boban, Mladen; Bochud, Murielle; Rheinberger, Myriam; Verweij, Niek; Bouatia-Naji, Nabila; Martin, Nicholas G; Hastie, Nick; Probst-Hensch, Nicole; Soranzo, Nicole; Devuyst, Olivier; Raitakari, Olli; Gottesman, Omri; Franco, Oscar H; Polasek, Ozren; Gasparini, Paolo; Munroe, Patricia B; Ridker, Paul M; Mitchell, Paul; Muntner, Paul; Meisinger, Christa; Smit, Johannes H; Kovacs, Peter; Wild, Philipp S; Froguel, Philippe; Rettig, Rainer; Mägi, Reedik; Biffar, Reiner; Schmidt, Reinhold; Middelberg, Rita P S; Carroll, Robert J; Penninx, Brenda W; Scott, Rodney J; Katz, Ronit; Sedaghat, Sanaz; Wild, Sarah H; Kardia, Sharon L R; Ulivi, Sheila; Hwang, Shih-Jen; Enroth, Stefan; Kloiber, Stefan; Trompet, Stella; Stengel, Benedicte; Hancock, Stephen J; Turner, Stephen T; Rosas, Sylvia E; Stracke, Sylvia; Harris, Tamara B; Zeller, Tanja; Zemunik, Tatijana; Lehtimäki, Terho; Illig, Thomas; Aspelund, Thor; Nikopensius, Tiit; Esko, Tonu; Tanaka, Toshiko; Gyllensten, Ulf; Völker, Uwe; Emilsson, Valur; Vitart, Veronique; Aalto, Ville; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Chouraki, Vincent; Chen, Wei-Min; Igl, Wilmar; März, Winfried; Koenig, Wolfgang; Lieb, Wolfgang; Loos, Ruth J F; Liu, Yongmei; Snieder, Harold; Pramstaller, Peter P; Parsa, Afshin; O'Connell, Jeffrey R; Susztak, Katalin; Hamet, Pavel; Tremblay, Johanne; de Boer, Ian H; Böger, Carsten A; Goessling, Wolfram; Chasman, Daniel I; Köttgen, Anna; Kao, W H Linda; Fox, Caroline S

    2016-01-21

    Reduced glomerular filtration rate defines chronic kidney disease and is associated with cardiovascular and all-cause mortality. We conducted a meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies for estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), combining data across 133,413 individuals with replication in up to 42,166 individuals. We identify 24 new and confirm 29 previously identified loci. Of these 53 loci, 19 associate with eGFR among individuals with diabetes. Using bioinformatics, we show that identified genes at eGFR loci are enriched for expression in kidney tissues and in pathways relevant for kidney development and transmembrane transporter activity, kidney structure, and regulation of glucose metabolism. Chromatin state mapping and DNase I hypersensitivity analyses across adult tissues demonstrate preferential mapping of associated variants to regulatory regions in kidney but not extra-renal tissues. These findings suggest that genetic determinants of eGFR are mediated largely through direct effects within the kidney and highlight important cell types and biological pathways.

  2. Biological Pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skip to main content Biological Pathways Fact Sheet Enter Search Term(s): Español Research Funding An Overview Bioinformatics Current Grants Education and Training Funding Extramural Research News Features ...

  3. A systems biology approach to identify intelligence quotient score-related genomic regions, and pathways relevant to potential therapeutic treatments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Min; Kong, Lei; Qu, Hong

    2014-01-01

    Although the intelligence quotient (IQ) is the most popular intelligence test in the world, little is known about the underlying biological mechanisms that lead to the differences in human. To improve our understanding of cognitive processes and identify potential biomarkers, we conducted a comprehensive investigation of 158 IQ-related genes selected from the literature. A genomic distribution analysis demonstrated that IQ-related genes were enriched in seven regions of chromosome 7 and the X chromosome. In addition, these genes were enriched in target lists of seven transcription factors and sixteen microRNAs. Using a network-based approach, we further reconstructed an IQ-related pathway from known human pathway interaction data. Based on this reconstructed pathway, we incorporated enriched drugs and described the importance of dopamine and norepinephrine systems in IQ-related biological process. These findings not only reveal several testable genes and processes related to IQ scores, but also have potential therapeutic implications for IQ-related mental disorders. PMID:24566931

  4. Biology relevant to space radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fry, R.J.M.

    1996-01-01

    The biological effects of the radiations to which mankind on earth are exposed are becoming known with an increasing degree of detail. This knowledge is the basis of the estimates of risk that, in turn, fosters a comprehensive and evolving radiation protection system. The substantial body of information has been, and is being, applied to questions about the biological effects of radiation is space and the associated risk estimates. The purpose of this paper is not to recount all the biological effect of radiation but to concentrate on those that may occur as a result from exposure to the radiations encountered in space. In general, the biological effects of radiation in space are the same as those on earth. However, the evidence that the effects on certain tissues by the heaviest-charged particles can be interpreted on the basis of our knowledge about other high-LET radiation is equivocal. This specific question will be discussed in greater detail later. It is important to point out the that there are only limited data about the effects on humans of two components of the radiations in space, namely protons and heavy ions. Thus predictions of effects on space crews are based on experimental systems exposed on earth at rates and fluences that are higher than those in space and one the effects of gamma or x rays with estimates of the equivalent doses using quality factors

  5. Biology relevant to space radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fry, R.J.M.

    1997-01-01

    There are only very limited data on the health effects to humans from the two major components of the radiations in space, namely protons and heavy ions. As a result, predictions of the accompanying effects must be based either on (1) data generated through studies of experimental systems exposed on earth at rates and fluences higher than those in space, or (2) extrapolations from studies of gamma and x rays. Better information is needed about the doses, dose rates, and the energy and LET spectra of the radiations at the organ level that are anticipated to be encountered during extended space missions. In particular, there is a need for better estimates of the relationship between radiation quality and biological effects. In the case of deterministic effects, it is the threshold that is important. The possibility of the occurrence of a large solar particle event (SPE) requires that such effects be considered during extended space missions. Analyses suggest, however, that it is feasible to provide sufficient shielding so as to reduce such effects to acceptable levels, particularly if the dose rates can be limited. If these analyses prove correct, the primary biological risks will be the stochastic effects (latent cancer induction). The contribution of one large SPE to the risk of stochastic effects while undesirable will not be large in comparison to the potential total dose on a mission of long duration

  6. The Kynurenine Pathway in Stem Cell Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon P. Jones

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The kynurenine pathway (KP is the main catabolic pathway of the essential amino acid tryptophan. The KP has been identified to play a critical role in regulating immune responses in a variety of experimental settings. It is also known to be involved in several neuroinflammatory diseases including Huntington's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and Alzheimer's disease. This review considers the current understanding of the role of the KP in stem cell biology. Both of these fundamental areas of cell biology have independently been the focus of a burgeoning research interest in recent years. A systematic review of how the two interact has not yet been conducted. Several inflammatory and infectious diseases in which the KP has been implicated include those for which stem cell therapies are being actively explored at a clinical level. Therefore, it is highly relevant to consider the evidence showing that the KP influences stem cell biology and impacts the functional behavior of progenitor cells.

  7. The kynurenine pathway in stem cell biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Simon P; Guillemin, Gilles J; Brew, Bruce J

    2013-09-15

    The kynurenine pathway (KP) is the main catabolic pathway of the essential amino acid tryptophan. The KP has been identified to play a critical role in regulating immune responses in a variety of experimental settings. It is also known to be involved in several neuroinflammatory diseases including Huntington's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and Alzheimer's disease. This review considers the current understanding of the role of the KP in stem cell biology. Both of these fundamental areas of cell biology have independently been the focus of a burgeoning research interest in recent years. A systematic review of how the two interact has not yet been conducted. Several inflammatory and infectious diseases in which the KP has been implicated include those for which stem cell therapies are being actively explored at a clinical level. Therefore, it is highly relevant to consider the evidence showing that the KP influences stem cell biology and impacts the functional behavior of progenitor cells.

  8. Molecular profiles to biology and pathways: a systems biology approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Laere, Steven; Dirix, Luc; Vermeulen, Peter

    2016-06-16

    Interpreting molecular profiles in a biological context requires specialized analysis strategies. Initially, lists of relevant genes were screened to identify enriched concepts associated with pathways or specific molecular processes. However, the shortcoming of interpreting gene lists by using predefined sets of genes has resulted in the development of novel methods that heavily rely on network-based concepts. These algorithms have the advantage that they allow a more holistic view of the signaling properties of the condition under study as well as that they are suitable for integrating different data types like gene expression, gene mutation, and even histological parameters.

  9. Computational Modeling of Biological Systems From Molecules to Pathways

    CERN Document Server

    2012-01-01

    Computational modeling is emerging as a powerful new approach for studying and manipulating biological systems. Many diverse methods have been developed to model, visualize, and rationally alter these systems at various length scales, from atomic resolution to the level of cellular pathways. Processes taking place at larger time and length scales, such as molecular evolution, have also greatly benefited from new breeds of computational approaches. Computational Modeling of Biological Systems: From Molecules to Pathways provides an overview of established computational methods for the modeling of biologically and medically relevant systems. It is suitable for researchers and professionals working in the fields of biophysics, computational biology, systems biology, and molecular medicine.

  10. Integrated pathway clusters with coherent biological themes for target prioritisation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi-An Chen

    Full Text Available Prioritising candidate genes for further experimental characterisation is an essential, yet challenging task in biomedical research. One way of achieving this goal is to identify specific biological themes that are enriched within the gene set of interest to obtain insights into the biological phenomena under study. Biological pathway data have been particularly useful in identifying functional associations of genes and/or gene sets. However, biological pathway information as compiled in varied repositories often differs in scope and content, preventing a more effective and comprehensive characterisation of gene sets. Here we describe a new approach to constructing biologically coherent gene sets from pathway data in major public repositories and employing them for functional analysis of large gene sets. We first revealed significant overlaps in gene content between different pathways and then defined a clustering method based on the shared gene content and the similarity of gene overlap patterns. We established the biological relevance of the constructed pathway clusters using independent quantitative measures and we finally demonstrated the effectiveness of the constructed pathway clusters in comparative functional enrichment analysis of gene sets associated with diverse human diseases gathered from the literature. The pathway clusters and gene mappings have been integrated into the TargetMine data warehouse and are likely to provide a concise, manageable and biologically relevant means of functional analysis of gene sets and to facilitate candidate gene prioritisation.

  11. Mining biological pathways using WikiPathways web services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelder, Thomas; Pico, Alexander R; Hanspers, Kristina; van Iersel, Martijn P; Evelo, Chris; Conklin, Bruce R

    2009-07-30

    WikiPathways is a platform for creating, updating, and sharing biological pathways [1]. Pathways can be edited and downloaded using the wiki-style website. Here we present a SOAP web service that provides programmatic access to WikiPathways that is complementary to the website. We describe the functionality that this web service offers and discuss several use cases in detail. Exposing WikiPathways through a web service opens up new ways of utilizing pathway information and assisting the community curation process.

  12. Partitioning of genomic variance using biological pathways

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Edwards, Stefan McKinnon; Janss, Luc; Madsen, Per

    and that these variants are enriched for genes that are connected in biological pathways or for likely functional effects on genes. These biological findings provide valuable insight for developing better genomic models. These are statistical models for predicting complex trait phenotypes on the basis of SNP...... action of multiple SNPs in genes, biological pathways or other external findings on the trait phenotype. As proof of concept we have tested the modelling framework on several traits in dairy cattle....

  13. BioMe: biologically relevant metals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tus, Alan; Rakipović, Alen; Peretin, Goran; Tomić, Sanja; Šikić, Mile

    2012-01-01

    In this article, we introduce BioMe (biologically relevant metals), a web-based platform for calculation of various statistical properties of metal-binding sites. Users can obtain the following statistical properties: presence of selected ligands in metal coordination sphere, distribution of coordination numbers, percentage of metal ions coordinated by the combination of selected ligands, distribution of monodentate and bidentate metal-carboxyl, bindings for ASP and GLU, percentage of particular binuclear metal centers, distribution of coordination geometry, descriptive statistics for a metal ion–donor distance and percentage of the selected metal ions coordinated by each of the selected ligands. Statistics is presented in numerical and graphical forms. The underlying database contains information about all contacts within the range of 3 Å from a metal ion found in the asymmetric crystal unit. The stored information for each metal ion includes Protein Data Bank code, structure determination method, types of metal-binding chains [protein, ribonucleic acid (RNA), deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), water and other] and names of the bounded ligands (amino acid residue, RNA nucleotide, DNA nucleotide, water and other) and the coordination number, the coordination geometry and, if applicable, another metal(s). BioMe is on a regular weekly update schedule. It is accessible at http://metals.zesoi.fer.hr. PMID:22693222

  14. Silk-polypyrrole biocompatible actuator performance under biologically relevant conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagler, Jo'elen; Peterson, Ben; Murphy, Amanda; Leger, Janelle

    Biocompatible actuators that are capable of controlled movement and can function under biologically relevant conditions are of significant interest in biomedical fields. Previously, we have demonstrated that a composite material of silk biopolymer and the conducting polymer polypyrrole (PPy) can be formed into a bilayer device that can bend under applied voltage. Further, these silk-PPy composites can generate forces comparable to human muscle (>0.1 MPa) making them ideal candidates for interfacing with biological tissues. Here silk-PPy composite films are tested for performance under biologically relevant conditions including exposure to a complex protein serum and biologically relevant temperatures. Free-end bending actuation performance, current response, force generation and, mass degradation were investigated . Preliminary results show that when exposed to proteins and biologically relevant temperatures, these silk-PPy composites show minimal degradation and are able to generate forces and conduct currents comparable to devices tested under standard conditions. NSF.

  15. e-Science and biological pathway semantics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciano Joanne S

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The development of e-Science presents a major set of opportunities and challenges for the future progress of biological and life scientific research. Major new tools are required and corresponding demands are placed on the high-throughput data generated and used in these processes. Nowhere is the demand greater than in the semantic integration of these data. Semantic Web tools and technologies afford the chance to achieve this semantic integration. Since pathway knowledge is central to much of the scientific research today it is a good test-bed for semantic integration. Within the context of biological pathways, the BioPAX initiative, part of a broader movement towards the standardization and integration of life science databases, forms a necessary prerequisite for its successful application of e-Science in health care and life science research. This paper examines whether BioPAX, an effort to overcome the barrier of disparate and heterogeneous pathway data sources, addresses the needs of e-Science. Results We demonstrate how BioPAX pathway data can be used to ask and answer some useful biological questions. We find that BioPAX comes close to meeting a broad range of e-Science needs, but certain semantic weaknesses mean that these goals are missed. We make a series of recommendations for re-modeling some aspects of BioPAX to better meet these needs. Conclusion Once these semantic weaknesses are addressed, it will be possible to integrate pathway information in a manner that would be useful in e-Science.

  16. Biological pathways and toxicity of plutonium

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Metivier, H.

    1982-01-01

    After a brief description of the sources of plutonium in the environment and its physical and chemical characteristics, the following topics were studied: 1) biological pathway of plutonium leading to man by ingestion of contaminated food, by inhalation, by skin absorption and wounds in case of occupational exposure, and finally transport in organism and tissue distribution; 2) toxicity of plutonium; 3) treatment of internal contamination; 4) human exposure and its consequences including population exposure and personnel exposure, health risk. Limits on plutonium intake are discussed in the light of ICRP recommendations. (117 references) [fr

  17. Positron interactions and transport in biologically relevant molecules

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Makochekanwa, C; Jones, A; Caradonna, P; Slaughter, D; Sullivan, J; Buckman, S; Bankovic, A; Petrovic, Z; Malovic, G; Dujko, S; Marler, J; Nixon, K; Brunger, M

    2009-01-01

    We present new, high-resolution measurements of positron scattering from biologically relevant molecules, such as water and formic acid. The measurements include absolute determinations of total scattering and positronium formation and they have enabled us to assemble a set of cross sections for these molecules which can be used in an investigation of positron transport in these systems.

  18. Pathway Commons, a web resource for biological pathway data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerami, Ethan G; Gross, Benjamin E; Demir, Emek; Rodchenkov, Igor; Babur, Ozgün; Anwar, Nadia; Schultz, Nikolaus; Bader, Gary D; Sander, Chris

    2011-01-01

    Pathway Commons (http://www.pathwaycommons.org) is a collection of publicly available pathway data from multiple organisms. Pathway Commons provides a web-based interface that enables biologists to browse and search a comprehensive collection of pathways from multiple sources represented in a common language, a download site that provides integrated bulk sets of pathway information in standard or convenient formats and a web service that software developers can use to conveniently query and access all data. Database providers can share their pathway data via a common repository. Pathways include biochemical reactions, complex assembly, transport and catalysis events and physical interactions involving proteins, DNA, RNA, small molecules and complexes. Pathway Commons aims to collect and integrate all public pathway data available in standard formats. Pathway Commons currently contains data from nine databases with over 1400 pathways and 687,000 interactions and will be continually expanded and updated.

  19. Electron scattering from molecules and molecular aggregates of biological relevance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorfinkiel, Jimena D.; Ptasinska, Sylwia

    2017-09-01

    In this Topical Review we survey the current state of the art in the study of low energy electron collisions with biologically relevant molecules and molecular clusters. We briefly describe the methods and techniques used in the investigation of these processes and summarise the results obtained so far for DNA constituents and their model compounds, amino acids, peptides and other biomolecules. The applications of the data obtained is briefly described as well as future required developments.

  20. Presenting and exploring biological pathways with PathVisio

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hanspers Kristina

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Biological pathways are a useful abstraction of biological concepts, and software tools to deal with pathway diagrams can help biological research. PathVisio is a new visualization tool for biological pathways that mimics the popular GenMAPP tool with a completely new Java implementation that allows better integration with other open source projects. The GenMAPP MAPP file format is replaced by GPML, a new XML file format that provides seamless exchange of graphical pathway information among multiple programs. Results PathVisio can be combined with other bioinformatics tools to open up three possible uses: visual compilation of biological knowledge, interpretation of high-throughput expression datasets, and computational augmentation of pathways with interaction information. PathVisio is open source software and available at http://www.pathvisio.org. Conclusion PathVisio is a graphical editor for biological pathways, with flexibility and ease of use as primary goals.

  1. Hands-on-Entropy, Energy Balance with Biological Relevance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reeves, Mark

    2015-03-01

    Entropy changes underlie the physics that dominates biological interactions. Indeed, introductory biology courses often begin with an exploration of the qualities of water that are important to living systems. However, one idea that is not explicitly addressed in most introductory physics or biology textbooks is important contribution of the entropy in driving fundamental biological processes towards equilibrium. From diffusion to cell-membrane formation, to electrostatic binding in protein folding, to the functioning of nerve cells, entropic effects often act to counterbalance deterministic forces such as electrostatic attraction and in so doing, allow for effective molecular signaling. A small group of biology, biophysics and computer science faculty have worked together for the past five years to develop curricular modules (based on SCALEUP pedagogy). This has enabled students to create models of stochastic and deterministic processes. Our students are first-year engineering and science students in the calculus-based physics course and they are not expected to know biology beyond the high-school level. In our class, they learn to reduce complex biological processes and structures in order model them mathematically to account for both deterministic and probabilistic processes. The students test these models in simulations and in laboratory experiments that are biologically relevant such as diffusion, ionic transport, and ligand-receptor binding. Moreover, the students confront random forces and traditional forces in problems, simulations, and in laboratory exploration throughout the year-long course as they move from traditional kinematics through thermodynamics to electrostatic interactions. This talk will present a number of these exercises, with particular focus on the hands-on experiments done by the students, and will give examples of the tangible material that our students work with throughout the two-semester sequence of their course on introductory

  2. Pathways to ischemic neuronal cell death: are sex differences relevant?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    McCullough Louise D

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract We have known for some time that the epidemiology of human stroke is sexually dimorphic until late in life, well beyond the years of reproductive senescence and menopause. Now, a new concept is emerging: the mechanisms and outcome of cerebral ischemic injury are influenced strongly by biological sex as well as the availability of sex steroids to the brain. The principal mammalian estrogen (17 β estradiol or E2 is neuroprotective in many types of brain injury and has been the major focus of investigation over the past several decades. However, it is becoming increasingly clear that although hormones are a major contributor to sex-specific outcomes, they do not fully account for sex-specific responses to cerebral ischemia. The purpose of this review is to highlight recent studies in cell culture and animal models that suggest that genetic sex determines experimental stroke outcome and that divergent cell death pathways are activated after an ischemic insult. These sex differences need to be identified if we are to develop efficacious neuroprotective agents for use in stroke patients.

  3. Biological pathways and genetic mechanisms involved in social functioning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ordonana, J.R.; Bartels, M.; Boomsma, D.I.; Cella, D.; Mosing, M.; Oliveira, J.R.; Patrick, D.L.; Veenhoven, R.; Wagner, G.G.; Sprangers, M.A.G.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: To describe the major findings in the literature regarding associations between biological and genetic factors and social functioning, paying special attention to: (1) heritability studies on social functioning and related concepts; (2) hypothesized biological pathways and genetic variants

  4. Co-expressed Pathways DataBase for Tomato: a database to predict pathways relevant to a query gene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narise, Takafumi; Sakurai, Nozomu; Obayashi, Takeshi; Ohta, Hiroyuki; Shibata, Daisuke

    2017-06-05

    Gene co-expression, the similarity of gene expression profiles under various experimental conditions, has been used as an indicator of functional relationships between genes, and many co-expression databases have been developed for predicting gene functions. These databases usually provide users with a co-expression network and a list of strongly co-expressed genes for a query gene. Several of these databases also provide functional information on a set of strongly co-expressed genes (i.e., provide biological processes and pathways that are enriched in these strongly co-expressed genes), which is generally analyzed via over-representation analysis (ORA). A limitation of this approach may be that users can predict gene functions only based on the strongly co-expressed genes. In this study, we developed a new co-expression database that enables users to predict the function of tomato genes from the results of functional enrichment analyses of co-expressed genes while considering the genes that are not strongly co-expressed. To achieve this, we used the ORA approach with several thresholds to select co-expressed genes, and performed gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) applied to a ranked list of genes ordered by the co-expression degree. We found that internal correlation in pathways affected the significance levels of the enrichment analyses. Therefore, we introduced a new measure for evaluating the relationship between the gene and pathway, termed the percentile (p)-score, which enables users to predict functionally relevant pathways without being affected by the internal correlation in pathways. In addition, we evaluated our approaches using receiver operating characteristic curves, which concluded that the p-score could improve the performance of the ORA. We developed a new database, named Co-expressed Pathways DataBase for Tomato, which is available at http://cox-path-db.kazusa.or.jp/tomato . The database allows users to predict pathways that are relevant to a

  5. Interleukins and their signaling pathways in the Reactome biological pathway database.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jupe, Steve; Ray, Keith; Roca, Corina Duenas; Varusai, Thawfeek; Shamovsky, Veronica; Stein, Lincoln; D'Eustachio, Peter; Hermjakob, Henning

    2018-04-01

    There is a wealth of biological pathway information available in the scientific literature, but it is spread across many thousands of publications. Alongside publications that contain definitive experimental discoveries are many others that have been dismissed as spurious, found to be irreproducible, or are contradicted by later results and consequently now considered controversial. Many descriptions and images of pathways are incomplete stylized representations that assume the reader is an expert and familiar with the established details of the process, which are consequently not fully explained. Pathway representations in publications frequently do not represent a complete, detailed, and unambiguous description of the molecules involved; their precise posttranslational state; or a full account of the molecular events they undergo while participating in a process. Although this might be sufficient to be interpreted by an expert reader, the lack of detail makes such pathways less useful and difficult to understand for anyone unfamiliar with the area and of limited use as the basis for computational models. Reactome was established as a freely accessible knowledge base of human biological pathways. It is manually populated with interconnected molecular events that fully detail the molecular participants linked to published experimental data and background material by using a formal and open data structure that facilitates computational reuse. These data are accessible on a Web site in the form of pathway diagrams that have descriptive summaries and annotations and as downloadable data sets in several formats that can be reused with other computational tools. The entire database and all supporting software can be downloaded and reused under a Creative Commons license. Pathways are authored by expert biologists who work with Reactome curators and editorial staff to represent the consensus in the field. Pathways are represented as interactive diagrams that include as

  6. The complexity of DNA damage: relevance to biological consequences

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ward, J.F.

    1994-01-01

    Ionizing radiation causes both singly and multiply damaged sites in DNA when the range of radical migration is limited by the presence of hydroxyl radical scavengers (e.g. within cells). Multiply damaged sites are considered to be more biologically relevant because of the challenges they present to cellular repair mechanisms. These sites occur in the form of DNA double-strand breaks (dsb) but also as other multiple damages that can be converted to dsb during attempted repair. The presence of a dsb can lead to loss of base sequence information and/or can permit the two ends of a break to separate and rejoin with the wrong partner. (Multiply damaged sites may also be the biologically relevant type of damage caused by other agents, such as UVA, B and/or C light, and some antitumour antibiotics). The quantitative data available from radiation studies of DNA are shown to support the proposed mechanisms for the production of complex damage in cellular DNA, i.e. via scavengable and non-scavengable mechanisms. The yields of complex damages can in turn be used to support the conclusion that cellular mutations are a consequence of the presence of these damages within a gene. (Author)

  7. In vivo relevance for photoprotection by the vitamin D rapid response pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dixon, K M; Deo, S S; Norman, A W; Bishop, J E; Halliday, G M; Reeve, V E; Mason, R S

    2007-03-01

    Vitamin D is produced by exposure of 7-dehydrocholesterol in the skin to UV irradiation (UVR) and further converted in the skin to the biologically active metabolite, 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D(3) (1,25(OH)(2)D(3)) and other compounds. UVR also results in DNA damage producing cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers (CPD). We previously reported that 1,25(OH)(2)D(3) at picomolar concentrations, protects human skin cells from UVR-induced apoptosis, and decreases CPD in surviving cells. 1,25(OH)(2)D(3) has been shown to generate biological responses via two pathways-the classical steroid receptor/genomic pathway or a rapid, non-genomic pathway mediated by a putative membrane receptor. Whether the rapid response pathway is physiologically relevant is unclear. A cis-locked, rapid-acting agonist 1,25(OH)(2)lumisterol(3) (JN), entirely mimicked the actions of 1,25(OH)(2)D(3) to reduce fibroblast and keratinocyte loss and CPD damage after UVR. The effects of 1,25(OH)(2)D(3) were abolished by a rapid-acting antagonist, but not by a genomic antagonist. Skh:hr1 mice exposed to three times the minimal erythemal dose of solar-simulated UVR and treated topically with 1,25(OH)(2)D(3) or JN immediately after UVR showed reduction in UVR-induced UVR-induced sunburn cells (pphotoprotective effects via the rapid pathway and raise the possibility that other D compounds produced in skin may contribute to the photoprotective effects.

  8. Autocatalytic, bistable, oscillatory networks of biologically relevant organic reactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semenov, Sergey N.; Kraft, Lewis J.; Ainla, Alar; Zhao, Mengxia; Baghbanzadeh, Mostafa; Campbell, Victoria E.; Kang, Kyungtae; Fox, Jerome M.; Whitesides, George M.

    2016-09-01

    Networks of organic chemical reactions are important in life and probably played a central part in its origin. Network dynamics regulate cell division, circadian rhythms, nerve impulses and chemotaxis, and guide the development of organisms. Although out-of-equilibrium networks of chemical reactions have the potential to display emergent network dynamics such as spontaneous pattern formation, bistability and periodic oscillations, the principles that enable networks of organic reactions to develop complex behaviours are incompletely understood. Here we describe a network of biologically relevant organic reactions (amide formation, thiolate-thioester exchange, thiolate-disulfide interchange and conjugate addition) that displays bistability and oscillations in the concentrations of organic thiols and amides. Oscillations arise from the interaction between three subcomponents of the network: an autocatalytic cycle that generates thiols and amides from thioesters and dialkyl disulfides; a trigger that controls autocatalytic growth; and inhibitory processes that remove activating thiol species that are produced during the autocatalytic cycle. In contrast to previous studies that have demonstrated oscillations and bistability using highly evolved biomolecules (enzymes and DNA) or inorganic molecules of questionable biochemical relevance (for example, those used in Belousov-Zhabotinskii-type reactions), the organic molecules we use are relevant to metabolism and similar to those that might have existed on the early Earth. By using small organic molecules to build a network of organic reactions with autocatalytic, bistable and oscillatory behaviour, we identify principles that explain the ways in which dynamic networks relevant to life could have developed. Modifications of this network will clarify the influence of molecular structure on the dynamics of reaction networks, and may enable the design of biomimetic networks and of synthetic self-regulating and evolving

  9. Systems biology approaches and pathway tools for investigating cardiovascular disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wheelock, C.E.; Wheelock, A.M.; Kawashima, S.; Diez, D.; Kanehisa, M.; Erk, M. van; Kleemann, R.; Haeggström, J.Z.; Goto, S.

    2009-01-01

    Systems biology aims to understand the nonlinear interactions of multiple biomolecular components that characterize a living organism. One important aspect of systems biology approaches is to identify the biological pathways or networks that connect the differing elements of a system, and examine

  10. Biclustering methods: biological relevance and application in gene expression analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Oghabian

    Full Text Available DNA microarray technologies are used extensively to profile the expression levels of thousands of genes under various conditions, yielding extremely large data-matrices. Thus, analyzing this information and extracting biologically relevant knowledge becomes a considerable challenge. A classical approach for tackling this challenge is to use clustering (also known as one-way clustering methods where genes (or respectively samples are grouped together based on the similarity of their expression profiles across the set of all samples (or respectively genes. An alternative approach is to develop biclustering methods to identify local patterns in the data. These methods extract subgroups of genes that are co-expressed across only a subset of samples and may feature important biological or medical implications. In this study we evaluate 13 biclustering and 2 clustering (k-means and hierarchical methods. We use several approaches to compare their performance on two real gene expression data sets. For this purpose we apply four evaluation measures in our analysis: (1 we examine how well the considered (biclustering methods differentiate various sample types; (2 we evaluate how well the groups of genes discovered by the (biclustering methods are annotated with similar Gene Ontology categories; (3 we evaluate the capability of the methods to differentiate genes that are known to be specific to the particular sample types we study and (4 we compare the running time of the algorithms. In the end, we conclude that as long as the samples are well defined and annotated, the contamination of the samples is limited, and the samples are well replicated, biclustering methods such as Plaid and SAMBA are useful for discovering relevant subsets of genes and samples.

  11. Arbitrary protein−protein docking targets biologically relevant interfaces

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Juliette

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein-protein recognition is of fundamental importance in the vast majority of biological processes. However, it has already been demonstrated that it is very hard to distinguish true complexes from false complexes in so-called cross-docking experiments, where binary protein complexes are separated and the isolated proteins are all docked against each other and scored. Does this result, at least in part, reflect a physical reality? False complexes could reflect possible nonspecific or weak associations. Results In this paper, we investigate the twilight zone of protein-protein interactions, building on an interesting outcome of cross-docking experiments: false complexes seem to favor residues from the true interaction site, suggesting that randomly chosen partners dock in a non-random fashion on protein surfaces. Here, we carry out arbitrary docking of a non-redundant data set of 198 proteins, with more than 300 randomly chosen "probe" proteins. We investigate the tendency of arbitrary partners to aggregate at localized regions of the protein surfaces, the shape and compositional bias of the generated interfaces, and the potential of this property to predict biologically relevant binding sites. We show that the non-random localization of arbitrary partners after protein-protein docking is a generic feature of protein structures. The interfaces generated in this way are not systematically planar or curved, but tend to be closer than average to the center of the proteins. These results can be used to predict biological interfaces with an AUC value up to 0.69 alone, and 0.72 when used in combination with evolutionary information. An appropriate choice of random partners and number of docking models make this method computationally practical. It is also noted that nonspecific interfaces can point to alternate interaction sites in the case of proteins with multiple interfaces. We illustrate the usefulness of arbitrary docking

  12. Arbitrary protein−protein docking targets biologically relevant interfaces

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Martin, Juliette; Lavery, Richard

    2012-01-01

    Protein-protein recognition is of fundamental importance in the vast majority of biological processes. However, it has already been demonstrated that it is very hard to distinguish true complexes from false complexes in so-called cross-docking experiments, where binary protein complexes are separated and the isolated proteins are all docked against each other and scored. Does this result, at least in part, reflect a physical reality? False complexes could reflect possible nonspecific or weak associations. In this paper, we investigate the twilight zone of protein-protein interactions, building on an interesting outcome of cross-docking experiments: false complexes seem to favor residues from the true interaction site, suggesting that randomly chosen partners dock in a non-random fashion on protein surfaces. Here, we carry out arbitrary docking of a non-redundant data set of 198 proteins, with more than 300 randomly chosen "probe" proteins. We investigate the tendency of arbitrary partners to aggregate at localized regions of the protein surfaces, the shape and compositional bias of the generated interfaces, and the potential of this property to predict biologically relevant binding sites. We show that the non-random localization of arbitrary partners after protein-protein docking is a generic feature of protein structures. The interfaces generated in this way are not systematically planar or curved, but tend to be closer than average to the center of the proteins. These results can be used to predict biological interfaces with an AUC value up to 0.69 alone, and 0.72 when used in combination with evolutionary information. An appropriate choice of random partners and number of docking models make this method computationally practical. It is also noted that nonspecific interfaces can point to alternate interaction sites in the case of proteins with multiple interfaces. We illustrate the usefulness of arbitrary docking using PEBP (Phosphatidylethanolamine binding

  13. PathText: a text mining integrator for biological pathway visualizations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kemper, Brian; Matsuzaki, Takuya; Matsuoka, Yukiko; Tsuruoka, Yoshimasa; Kitano, Hiroaki; Ananiadou, Sophia; Tsujii, Jun'ichi

    2010-01-01

    Motivation: Metabolic and signaling pathways are an increasingly important part of organizing knowledge in systems biology. They serve to integrate collective interpretations of facts scattered throughout literature. Biologists construct a pathway by reading a large number of articles and interpreting them as a consistent network, but most of the models constructed currently lack direct links to those articles. Biologists who want to check the original articles have to spend substantial amounts of time to collect relevant articles and identify the sections relevant to the pathway. Furthermore, with the scientific literature expanding by several thousand papers per week, keeping a model relevant requires a continuous curation effort. In this article, we present a system designed to integrate a pathway visualizer, text mining systems and annotation tools into a seamless environment. This will enable biologists to freely move between parts of a pathway and relevant sections of articles, as well as identify relevant papers from large text bases. The system, PathText, is developed by Systems Biology Institute, Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology, National Centre for Text Mining (University of Manchester) and the University of Tokyo, and is being used by groups of biologists from these locations. Contact: brian@monrovian.com. PMID:20529930

  14. Biological Conversion of Sugars to Hydrocarbons Technology Pathway

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Davis, R.; Biddy, M.; Tan, E.; Tao, L.; Jones, S.

    2013-03-01

    This technology pathway case investigates the biological conversion of biomass-derived sugars to hydrocarbon biofuels, utilizing data from recent literature references and information consistent with recent pilot-scale demonstrations at NREL. Technical barriers and key research needs have been identified that should be pursued for the pathway to become competitive with petroleum-derived gasoline-, diesel-, and jet-range hydrocarbon blendstocks.

  15. Classifying transcription factor targets and discovering relevant biological features

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DeLisi Charles

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background An important goal in post-genomic research is discovering the network of interactions between transcription factors (TFs and the genes they regulate. We have previously reported the development of a supervised-learning approach to TF target identification, and used it to predict targets of 104 transcription factors in yeast. We now include a new sequence conservation measure, expand our predictions to include 59 new TFs, introduce a web-server, and implement an improved ranking method to reveal the biological features contributing to regulation. The classifiers combine 8 genomic datasets covering a broad range of measurements including sequence conservation, sequence overrepresentation, gene expression, and DNA structural properties. Principal Findings (1 Application of the method yields an amplification of information about yeast regulators. The ratio of total targets to previously known targets is greater than 2 for 11 TFs, with several having larger gains: Ash1(4, Ino2(2.6, Yaf1(2.4, and Yap6(2.4. (2 Many predicted targets for TFs match well with the known biology of their regulators. As a case study we discuss the regulator Swi6, presenting evidence that it may be important in the DNA damage response, and that the previously uncharacterized gene YMR279C plays a role in DNA damage response and perhaps in cell-cycle progression. (3 A procedure based on recursive-feature-elimination is able to uncover from the large initial data sets those features that best distinguish targets for any TF, providing clues relevant to its biology. An analysis of Swi6 suggests a possible role in lipid metabolism, and more specifically in metabolism of ceramide, a bioactive lipid currently being investigated for anti-cancer properties. (4 An analysis of global network properties highlights the transcriptional network hubs; the factors which control the most genes and the genes which are bound by the largest set of regulators. Cell-cycle and

  16. Modelling biological pathway dynamics with Timed Automata

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schivo, Stefano; Scholma, Jetse; Urquidi Camacho, R.A.; Wanders, B.; van der Vet, P.E.; Karperien, Hermanus Bernardus Johannes; Langerak, Romanus; van de Pol, Jan Cornelis; Post, Janine Nicole

    2012-01-01

    When analysing complex interaction networks occurring in biological cells, a biologist needs computational support in order to understand the effects of signalling molecules (e.g. growth factors, drugs). ANIMO (Analysis of Networks with Interactive MOdelling) is a tool that allows the user to create

  17. Characterization of Nanoparticle Aggregation in Biologically Relevant Fluids

    Science.gov (United States)

    McEnnis, Kathleen; Lahann, Joerg

    Nanoparticles (NPs) are often studied as drug delivery vehicles, but little is known about their behavior in blood once injected into animal models. If the NPs aggregate in blood, they will be shunted to the liver or spleen instead of reaching the intended target. The use of animals for these experiments is costly and raises ethical questions. Typically dynamic light scattering (DLS) is used to analyze aggregation behavior, but DLS cannot be used because the components of blood also scatter light. As an alternative, a method of analyzing NPs in biologically relevant fluids such as blood plasma has been developed using nanoparticle tracking analysis (NTA) with fluorescent filters. In this work, NTA was used to analyze the aggregation behavior of fluorescent polystyrene NPs with different surface modifications in blood plasma. It was expected that different surface chemistries on the particles will change the aggregation behavior. The effect of the surface modifications was investigated by quantifying the percentage of NPs in aggregates after addition to blood plasma. The use of this characterization method will allow for better understanding of particle behavior in the body, and potential problems, specifically aggregation, can be addressed before investing in in vivo studies.

  18. Physical, chemical, and biological properties of radiocerium relevant to radiation protection guidelines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1978-01-01

    Present knowledge of the relevant physical, chemical, and biological properties of radiocerium as a basis for establishing radiation protection guidelines is summarized. The first section of the report reviews the chemical and physical properties of radiocerium relative to the biological behavior of internally-deposited cerium and other lanthanides. The second section of the report gives the sources of radiocerium in the environment and the pathways to man. The third section of the report describes the metabolic fate of cerium in several mammalian species as a basis for predicting its metabolic fate in man. The fourth section of the report considers the biomedical effects of radiocerium in light of extensive animal experimentation. The last two sections of the report describe the history of radiation protection guidelines for radiocerium and summarize data required for evaluating the adequacy of current radiation protection guidelines. Each section begins with a summary of the most important findings that follow

  19. Molecular Phenotyping Combines Molecular Information, Biological Relevance, and Patient Data to Improve Productivity of Early Drug Discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drawnel, Faye Marie; Zhang, Jitao David; Küng, Erich; Aoyama, Natsuyo; Benmansour, Fethallah; Araujo Del Rosario, Andrea; Jensen Zoffmann, Sannah; Delobel, Frédéric; Prummer, Michael; Weibel, Franziska; Carlson, Coby; Anson, Blake; Iacone, Roberto; Certa, Ulrich; Singer, Thomas; Ebeling, Martin; Prunotto, Marco

    2017-05-18

    Today, novel therapeutics are identified in an environment which is intrinsically different from the clinical context in which they are ultimately evaluated. Using molecular phenotyping and an in vitro model of diabetic cardiomyopathy, we show that by quantifying pathway reporter gene expression, molecular phenotyping can cluster compounds based on pathway profiles and dissect associations between pathway activities and disease phenotypes simultaneously. Molecular phenotyping was applicable to compounds with a range of binding specificities and triaged false positives derived from high-content screening assays. The technique identified a class of calcium-signaling modulators that can reverse disease-regulated pathways and phenotypes, which was validated by structurally distinct compounds of relevant classes. Our results advocate for application of molecular phenotyping in early drug discovery, promoting biological relevance as a key selection criterion early in the drug development cascade. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. A systems biology approach reveals common metastatic pathways in osteosarcoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flores Ricardo J

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Osteosarcoma (OS is the most common malignant bone tumor in children and adolescents. The survival rate of patients with metastatic disease remains very dismal. Nevertheless, metastasis is a complex process and a single-level analysis is not likely to identify its key biological determinants. In this study, we used a systems biology approach to identify common metastatic pathways that are jointly supported by both mRNA and protein expression data in two distinct human metastatic OS models. Results mRNA expression microarray and N-linked glycoproteomic analyses were performed on two commonly used isogenic pairs of human metastatic OS cell lines, namely HOS/143B and SaOS-2/LM7. Pathway analysis of the differentially regulated genes and glycoproteins separately revealed pathways associated to metastasis including cell cycle regulation, immune response, and epithelial-to-mesenchymal-transition. However, no common significant pathway was found at both genomic and proteomic levels between the two metastatic models, suggesting a very different biological nature of the cell lines. To address this issue, we used a topological significance analysis based on a “shortest-path” algorithm to identify topological nodes, which uncovered additional biological information with respect to the genomic and glycoproteomic profiles but remained hidden from the direct analyses. Pathway analysis of the significant topological nodes revealed a striking concordance between the models and identified significant common pathways, including “Cytoskeleton remodeling/TGF/WNT”, “Cytoskeleton remodeling/Cytoskeleton remodeling”, and “Cell adhesion/Chemokines and adhesion”. Of these, the “Cytoskeleton remodeling/TGF/WNT” was the top ranked common pathway from the topological analysis of the genomic and proteomic profiles in the two metastatic models. The up-regulation of proteins in the “Cytoskeleton remodeling/TGF/WNT” pathway in the Sa

  1. Whole-Exome Sequencing to Identify Novel Biological Pathways Associated With Infertility After Pelvic Inflammatory Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Brandie D; Zheng, Xiaojing; Darville, Toni; Zhong, Wujuan; Konganti, Kranti; Abiodun-Ojo, Olayinka; Ness, Roberta B; O'Connell, Catherine M; Haggerty, Catherine L

    2017-01-01

    Ideal management of sexually transmitted infections (STI) may require risk markers for pathology or vaccine development. Previously, we identified common genetic variants associated with chlamydial pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) and reduced fecundity. As this explains only a proportion of the long-term morbidity risk, we used whole-exome sequencing to identify biological pathways that may be associated with STI-related infertility. We obtained stored DNA from 43 non-Hispanic black women with PID from the PID Evaluation and Clinical Health Study. Infertility was assessed at a mean of 84 months. Principal component analysis revealed no population stratification. Potential covariates did not significantly differ between groups. Sequencing kernel association test was used to examine associations between aggregates of variants on a single gene and infertility. The results from the sequencing kernel association test were used to choose "focus genes" (P < 0.01; n = 150) for subsequent Ingenuity Pathway Analysis to identify "gene sets" that are enriched in biologically relevant pathways. Pathway analysis revealed that focus genes were enriched in canonical pathways including, IL-1 signaling, P2Y purinergic receptor signaling, and bone morphogenic protein signaling. Focus genes were enriched in pathways that impact innate and adaptive immunity, protein kinase A activity, cellular growth, and DNA repair. These may alter host resistance or immunopathology after infection. Targeted sequencing of biological pathways identified in this study may provide insight into STI-related infertility.

  2. Contextual Hub Analysis Tool (CHAT): A Cytoscape app for identifying contextually relevant hubs in biological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muetze, Tanja; Goenawan, Ivan H; Wiencko, Heather L; Bernal-Llinares, Manuel; Bryan, Kenneth; Lynn, David J

    2016-01-01

    Highly connected nodes (hubs) in biological networks are topologically important to the structure of the network and have also been shown to be preferentially associated with a range of phenotypes of interest. The relative importance of a hub node, however, can change depending on the biological context. Here, we report a Cytoscape app, the Contextual Hub Analysis Tool (CHAT), which enables users to easily construct and visualize a network of interactions from a gene or protein list of interest, integrate contextual information, such as gene expression or mass spectrometry data, and identify hub nodes that are more highly connected to contextual nodes (e.g. genes or proteins that are differentially expressed) than expected by chance. In a case study, we use CHAT to construct a network of genes that are differentially expressed in Dengue fever, a viral infection. CHAT was used to identify and compare contextual and degree-based hubs in this network. The top 20 degree-based hubs were enriched in pathways related to the cell cycle and cancer, which is likely due to the fact that proteins involved in these processes tend to be highly connected in general. In comparison, the top 20 contextual hubs were enriched in pathways commonly observed in a viral infection including pathways related to the immune response to viral infection. This analysis shows that such contextual hubs are considerably more biologically relevant than degree-based hubs and that analyses which rely on the identification of hubs solely based on their connectivity may be biased towards nodes that are highly connected in general rather than in the specific context of interest. CHAT is available for Cytoscape 3.0+ and can be installed via the Cytoscape App Store ( http://apps.cytoscape.org/apps/chat).

  3. Seeking kinetic pathways relevant to the structural evolution of metal nanoparticles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Haldar, Paramita; Chatterjee, Abhijit

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the kinetic pathways that cause metal nanoparticles to structurally evolve over time is essential for predicting their shape and size distributions and catalytic properties. Consequently, we need detailed kinetic models that can provide such information. Most kinetic Monte Carlo models used for metal systems contain a fixed catalogue of atomic moves; the catalogue is largely constructed based on our physical understanding of the material. In some situations, it is possible that an incorrect picture of the overall dynamics is obtained when kinetic pathways that are relevant to the dynamics are missing from the catalogue. Hence, a computational framework that can systematically determine the relevant pathways is required. This work intends to fulfil this requirement. Examples involving an Ag nanoparticle are studied to illustrate how molecular dynamics (MD) calculations can be employed to find the relevant pathways in a system. Since pathways that are unlikely to be selected at short timescales can become relevant at longer times, the accuracy of the catalogue is maintained by continually seeking these pathways using MD. We discuss various aspects of our approach, namely, defining the relevance of atomic moves to the dynamics and determining when additional MD is required to ensure the desired accuracy, as well as physical insights into the Ag nanoparticle. (paper)

  4. PubChem3D: Biologically relevant 3-D similarity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kim Sunghwan

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The use of 3-D similarity techniques in the analysis of biological data and virtual screening is pervasive, but what is a biologically meaningful 3-D similarity value? Can one find statistically significant separation between "active/active" and "active/inactive" spaces? These questions are explored using 734,486 biologically tested chemical structures, 1,389 biological assay data sets, and six different 3-D similarity types utilized by PubChem analysis tools. Results The similarity value distributions of 269.7 billion unique conformer pairs from 734,486 biologically tested compounds (all-against-all from PubChem were utilized to help work towards an answer to the question: what is a biologically meaningful 3-D similarity score? The average and standard deviation for the six similarity measures STST-opt, CTST-opt, ComboTST-opt, STCT-opt, CTCT-opt, and ComboTCT-opt were 0.54 ± 0.10, 0.07 ± 0.05, 0.62 ± 0.13, 0.41 ± 0.11, 0.18 ± 0.06, and 0.59 ± 0.14, respectively. Considering that this random distribution of biologically tested compounds was constructed using a single theoretical conformer per compound (the "default" conformer provided by PubChem, further study may be necessary using multiple diverse conformers per compound; however, given the breadth of the compound set, the single conformer per compound results may still apply to the case of multi-conformer per compound 3-D similarity value distributions. As such, this work is a critical step, covering a very wide corpus of chemical structures and biological assays, creating a statistical framework to build upon. The second part of this study explored the question of whether it was possible to realize a statistically meaningful 3-D similarity value separation between reputed biological assay "inactives" and "actives". Using the terminology of noninactive-noninactive (NN pairs and the noninactive-inactive (NI pairs to represent comparison of the "active/active" and

  5. Constructing biological pathways by a two-step counting approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hsiuying Wang

    Full Text Available Networks are widely used in biology to represent the relationships between genes and gene functions. In Boolean biological models, it is mainly assumed that there are two states to represent a gene: on-state and off-state. It is typically assumed that the relationship between two genes can be characterized by two kinds of pairwise relationships: similarity and prerequisite. Many approaches have been proposed in the literature to reconstruct biological relationships. In this article, we propose a two-step method to reconstruct the biological pathway when the binary array data have measurement error. For a pair of genes in a sample, the first step of this approach is to assign counting numbers for every relationship and select the relationship with counting number greater than a threshold. The second step is to calculate the asymptotic p-values for hypotheses of possible relationships and select relationships with a large p-value. This new method has the advantages of easy calculation for the counting numbers and simple closed forms for the p-value. The simulation study and real data example show that the two-step counting method can accurately reconstruct the biological pathway and outperform the existing methods. Compared with the other existing methods, this two-step method can provide a more accurate and efficient alternative approach for reconstructing the biological network.

  6. Sifting abstracts from Medline and evaluating their relevance to molecular biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grabar, Natalia; Jaulent, Marie-Christine; Chambaz, Antoine; Lefebvre, Céline; Néri, Christian

    2006-01-01

    The most important knowledge in the area of biology currently consists of raw text documents. Bibliographic databases of biomedical articles can be searched, but an efficient procedure should evaluate the relevance of documents to biology. In genetics, this challenge is even trickier, because of the lack of consistency in genes' naming tradition. We aim to define a good approach for collecting relevant abstracts for biology and for studied species and genes. Our approach relies on defining best queries, detecting and filtering best sources.

  7. Streptococcus pyogenes biofilms – formation, biology,and clinical relevance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomas eFiedler

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Streptococcus pyogenes (group A streptococci, GAS is an exclusive human bacterial pathogen. The virulence potential of this species is tremendous. Interactions with humans range from asymptomatic carriage over mild and superficial infections of skin and mucosal membranes up to systemic purulent toxic-invasive disease manifestations. Particularly the latter are a severe threat for predisposed patients and lead to significant death tolls worldwide. This places GAS among the most important Gram-positive bacterial pathogens. Many recent reviews have highlighted the GAS repertoire of virulence factors, regulators and regulatory circuits/networks that enable GAS to colonize the host and to deal with all levels of the host immune defense. This covers in vitro and in vivo studies, including animal infection studies based on mice and more relevant, macaque monkeys. It is now appreciated that GAS, like many other bacterial species, do not necessarily exclusively live in a planktonic lifestyle. GAS is capable of microcolony and biofilm formation on host cells and tissues. We are now beginning to understand that this feature significantly contributes to GAS pathogenesis. In this review we will discuss the current knowledge on GAS biofilm formation, the biofilm-phenotype associated virulence factors, regulatory aspects of biofilm formation, the clinical relevance, and finally contemporary treatment regimens and future treatment options.

  8. Crossing frontiers in tackling pathways of biological invasions

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Essl, F.; Bacher, S.; Blackburn, T. M.; Booy, O.; Brundu, G.; Brunel, S.; Cardoso, A.-C.; Eschen, R.; Gallardo, B.; Galil, B.; García-Berthou, E.; Genovesi, P.; Groom, Q.; Harrower, C.; Hulme, P. E.; Katsanevakis, S.; Kenis, M.; Kühn, I.; Kumschick, S.; Martinou, A. F.; Nentwig, W.; O´Flynn, C.; Pagad, S.; Pergl, Jan; Pyšek, Petr; Rabitsch, W.; Richardson, D. M.; Roques, A.; Roy, H. E.; Sclarea, R.; Schindler, S.; Seebens, H.; Vanderhoeven, S.; Vila, M.; Wilson, J. R. U.; Zenetos, A.; Jeschke, J.M.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 65, č. 8 (2015), s. 769-782 ISSN 0006-3568 R&D Projects: GA ČR GB14-36079G; GA ČR(CZ) GAP504/11/1028 Grant - others:AV ČR(CZ) AP1002 Program:Akademická prémie - Praemium Academiae Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : biological invasions * pathways * management Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 4.294, year: 2015

  9. Biological Conversion of Sugars to Hydrocarbons Technology Pathway

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Davis, Ryan; Biddy, Mary J.; Tan, Eric; Tao, Ling; Jones, Susanne B.

    2013-03-31

    In support of the Bioenergy Technologies Office, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) are undertaking studies of biomass conversion technologies to identify barriers and target research toward reducing conversion costs. Process designs and preliminary economic estimates for each of these pathway cases were developed using rigorous modeling tools (Aspen Plus and Chemcad). These analyses incorporated the best information available at the time of development, including data from recent pilot and bench-scale demonstrations, collaborative industrial and academic partners, and published literature and patents. This technology pathway case investigates the biological conversion of biomass derived sugars to hydrocarbon biofuels, utilizing data from recent literature references and information consistent with recent pilot scale demonstrations at NREL. Technical barriers and key research needs have been identified that should be pursued for the pathway to become competitive with petroleum-derived gasoline, diesel and jet range hydrocarbon blendstocks.

  10. A biologically relevant method for considering patterns of oceanic retention in the Southern Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mori, Mao; Corney, Stuart P.; Melbourne-Thomas, Jessica; Klocker, Andreas; Sumner, Michael; Constable, Andrew

    2017-12-01

    Many marine species have planktonic forms - either during a larval stage or throughout their lifecycle - that move passively or are strongly influenced by ocean currents. Understanding these patterns of movement is important for informing marine ecosystem management and for understanding ecological processes generally. Retention of biological particles in a particular area due to ocean currents has received less attention than transport pathways, particularly for the Southern Ocean. We present a method for modelling retention time, based on the half-life for particles in a particular region, that is relevant for biological processes. This method uses geostrophic velocities at the ocean surface, derived from 23 years of satellite altimetry data (1993-2016), to simulate the advection of passive particles during the Southern Hemisphere summer season (from December to March). We assess spatial patterns in the retention time of passive particles and evaluate the processes affecting these patterns for the Indian sector of the Southern Ocean. Our results indicate that the distribution of retention time is related to bathymetric features and the resulting ocean dynamics. Our analysis also reveals a moderate level of consistency between spatial patterns of retention time and observations of Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) distribution.

  11. Biology and relevance of human acute myeloid leukemia stem cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Daniel; Majeti, Ravindra

    2017-03-23

    Evidence of human acute myeloid leukemia stem cells (AML LSCs) was first reported nearly 2 decades ago through the identification of rare subpopulations of engrafting cells in xenotransplantation assays. These AML LSCs were shown to reside at the apex of a cellular hierarchy that initiates and maintains the disease, exhibiting properties of self-renewal, cell cycle quiescence, and chemoresistance. This cancer stem cell model offers an explanation for chemotherapy resistance and disease relapse and implies that approaches to treatment must eradicate LSCs for cure. More recently, a number of studies have both refined and expanded our understanding of LSCs and intrapatient heterogeneity in AML using improved xenotransplant models, genome-scale analyses, and experimental manipulation of primary patient cells. Here, we review these studies with a focus on the immunophenotype, biological properties, epigenetics, genetics, and clinical associations of human AML LSCs and discuss critical questions that need to be addressed in future research. © 2017 by The American Society of Hematology.

  12. EPR imaging of diffusional processes in biologically relevant polymers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berliner, Lawrence J.; Fujii, Hirotada

    Diffusion processes in biological tissue are important problems for noninvasive investigation. As a model study, this work addresses the diffusion of an electrolyte buffer (Krebs) solution containing a nitroxide spin probe into a cylindrical polyacrylamide gel rod. The nitroxide spin density distribution was imaged at 1.6 GHz in gel cross sections at various time intervals for both homogeneous radial diffusion and inhomogeneous diffusion. A one-dimensional radial diffusion constant was calculated for the nitroxide spin probe, TEMPOL, of 3.7 ± 0.7 × 10 -6 cm 2/s at ambient temperature. The EPR spectrometer, using low-field flat-loop surface coils (H. Nishikawa, H. Fujii, and L. J. Berliner, J. Magn. Reson.62, 79 (1985)), showed minimal dielectric or magnetic losses in sensitity for electrolyte vs nondielectric samples.

  13. Rethinking the central dogma: noncoding RNAs are biologically relevant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Victoria L

    2009-01-01

    Non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) are a large class of functional molecules with over 100 unique classes described to date. ncRNAs are diverse in terms of their function and size. A relatively new class of small ncRNA, called microRNAs (miRNA), have received a great deal of attention in the literature in recent years. miRNAs are endogenously encoded gene families that demonstrate striking evolutionary conservation. miRNAs serve essential and diverse physiological functions such as differentiation and development, proliferation, maintaining cell type phenotypes, and many others. The discovery and ongoing investigation of miRNAs is part of a revolution in biology that is changing the basic concepts of gene expression and RNA functionality. A single miRNA can participate in controlling the expression of up to several hundred protein-coding genes by interacting with mRNAs, generally in 3' untranslated regions. Our new and developing understanding of miRNAs, and other ncRNAs, promises to lead to significant contributions to medicine. Specifically, miRNAs are likely to serve as the basis for novel therapies and diagnostic tools.

  14. Biological relevance of human papillomaviruses in vulvar cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halec, Gordana; Alemany, Laia; Quiros, Beatriz; Clavero, Omar; Höfler, Daniela; Alejo, Maria; Quint, Wim; Pawlita, Michael; Bosch, Francesc X; de Sanjose, Silvia

    2017-04-01

    The carcinogenic role of high-risk human papillomavirus (HR-HPV) types in the increasing subset of vulvar intraepithelial neoplasia and vulvar cancer in young women has been established. However, the actual number of vulvar cancer cases attributed to HPV is still imprecisely defined. In an attempt to provide a more precise definition of HPV-driven vulvar cancer, we performed HPV-type-specific E6*I mRNA analyses available for 20 HR-/possible HR (pHR)-HPV types, on tissue samples from 447 cases of vulvar cancer. HPV DNA genotyping was performed using SPF10-LiPA 25 assay due to its high sensitivity in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissues. Data on p16 INK4a expression was available for comparative analysis via kappa statistics. The use of highly sensitive assays covering the detection of HPV mRNA in a broad spectrum of mucosal HPV types resulted in the detection of viral transcripts in 87% of HPV DNA+ vulvar cancers. Overall concordance between HPV mRNA+ and p16 INK4a upregulation (strong, diffuse immunostaining in >25% of tumor cells) was 92% (K=0.625, 95% confidence interval (CI)=0.531-0.719). Among these cases, 83% were concordant pairs of HPV mRNA+ and p16 INK4a + and 9% were concordant pairs of HPV mRNA- and p16 INK4a -. Our data confirm the biological role of HR-/pHR-HPV types in the great majority of HPV DNA+ vulvar cancers, resulting in an HPV-attributable fraction of at least 21% worldwide. Most HPV DNA+ vulvar cancers were associated with HPV16 (85%), but a causative role for other, less frequently occurring mucosal HPV types (HPV26, 66, 67, 68, 70 and 73) was also confirmed at the mRNA level for the first time. These findings should be taken into consideration for future screening options as HPV-associated vulvar preneoplastic lesions have increased in incidence in younger women and require different treatment than vulvar lesions that develop from rare autoimmune-related mechanisms in older women.

  15. Genomics and systems biology--how relevant are the developments to veterinary pharmacology, toxicology and therapeutics?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witkamp, R F

    2005-06-01

    This review discusses some of the recent developments in genomics and its current and future relevance for veterinary pharmacology and toxicology. With the rapid progress made in this field several new approaches in pharmacological and toxicological research have developed and drug discovery and drug development strategies have changed dramatically. In this review, the term genomics is used to encompass the three sub-disciplines transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics (or metabonomics) to describe the formation and fate of mRNA, proteins and metabolites, respectively. The current status and methods of the technology and some applications are briefly described. Although the DNA sequencing programmes are receiving considerable attention, the real value of genomics for pharmacology and toxicology is brought by the parallel developments in bio-informatics, bio-statistics and the integration of biology with mathematics and information technology. The ultimate level of integration is now mostly called systems biology, where mRNA, proteins and metabolites are being analysed in parallel, using a complete arsenal of analytical techniques (DNA-array, LC-MS/MS, GC-MS/MS, NMR, etc.). The information thus collected is analysed, integrated, linked to database information and translated to pathways and systems. This approach offers an enormous potential to study disease mechanisms and find new drug targets. Thus far, genomics and systems biology have not been introduced significantly in typical veterinary pharmacological and toxicological research programmes. The high costs and complexity connected to these large projects often form major obstacles for research groups with limited budgets. In other veterinary areas and disciplines, including infectious diseases, animal production and food-safety more examples of application are available. Genomics and bio-informatics provide outstanding opportunities to study pharmacology and toxicology in a more holistic way, taking into

  16. Efficient algorithms for extracting biological key pathways with global constraints

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Baumbach, Jan; Friedrich, T.; Kötzing, T.

    2012-01-01

    from a set of cases (patients, cell lines, tissues, etc.). We aimed for finding all maximal connected sub-graphs where all nodes but K are expressed in all cases but at most L, i.e. key pathways. Thereby, we combined biological networks with OMICS data, instead of analyzing these data sets in isolation....... Here we present an alternative approach that avoids a certain bias towards hub nodes: We now aim for extracting all maximal connected sub-networks where all but at most K nodes are expressed in all cases but in total (!) at most L, i.e. accumulated over all cases and all nodes in a solution. We call...

  17. In-silico prediction of drug targets, biological activities, signal pathways and regulating networks of dioscin based on bioinformatics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Lianhong; Zheng, Lingli; Xu, Lina; Dong, Deshi; Han, Xu; Qi, Yan; Zhao, Yanyan; Xu, Youwei; Peng, Jinyong

    2015-03-05

    Inverse docking technology has been a trend of drug discovery, and bioinformatics approaches have been used to predict target proteins, biological activities, signal pathways and molecular regulating networks affected by drugs for further pharmacodynamic and mechanism studies. In the present paper, inverse docking technology was applied to screen potential targets from potential drug target database (PDTD). Then, the corresponding gene information of the obtained drug-targets was applied to predict the related biological activities, signal pathways and processes networks of the compound by using MetaCore platform. After that, some most relevant regulating networks were considered, which included the nodes and relevant pathways of dioscin. 71 potential targets of dioscin from humans, 7 from rats and 8 from mice were screened, and the prediction results showed that the most likely targets of dioscin were cyclin A2, calmodulin, hemoglobin subunit beta, DNA topoisomerase I, DNA polymerase lambda, nitric oxide synthase and UDP-N-acetylhexosamine pyrophosphorylase, etc. Many diseases including experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis of human, temporal lobe epilepsy of rat and ankylosing spondylitis of mouse, may be inhibited by dioscin through regulating immune response alternative complement pathway, G-protein signaling RhoB regulation pathway and immune response antiviral actions of interferons, etc. The most relevant networks (5 from human, 3 from rat and 5 from mouse) indicated that dioscin may be a TOP1 inhibitor, which can treat cancer though the cell cycle- transition and termination of DNA replication pathway. Dioscin can down regulate EGFR and EGF to inhibit cancer, and also has anti-inflammation activity by regulating JNK signaling pathway. The predictions of the possible targets, biological activities, signal pathways and relevant regulating networks of dioscin provide valuable information to guide further investigation of dioscin on pharmacodynamics and

  18. Is 'class effect' relevant when assessing the benefit/risk profile of a biologic agent?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sterry, W.; Kerkhof, P.C.M. van de

    2012-01-01

    Psoriasis is a chronic, genetically predisposed skin disorder, characterised by thickened scaly plaques. Although no therapy is recognised as curative, therapies aimed at symptom control include biologic agents that are generally designed to block molecular activation of cellular pathways of a

  19. Relative extents of hydrogen-deuterium exchange of nitrosamines: relevance to biological isotope effect studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Singer, G.M.; Lijinsky, W.

    1979-01-01

    Relative extents of base-catalyzed, hydrogen-deuterium exchange have been determined for a number of nitrosamines. Observed trends in the exchanges are discussed in terms of substitution, ring size and conformation. The relevance of the exchanges to deuterium isotope effects in carcinogenesis tests is discussed. Those compounds which give pronounced biological isotope effects undergo exchange only to a small extent. No biological isotope effect is found for compounds which undergo extensive exchange. (author)

  20. A study of ruthenium complexes of some biologically relevant a-N ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Journal of Chemical Sciences; Volume 112; Issue 3. A study of ruthenium complexes of some biologically relevant ∙ -N-heterocyclic carboxylic acids. P Sengupta S Ghosh. Volume 112 Issue 3 June 2000 pp 355-355. Fulltext. Click here to view fulltext PDF. Permanent link:

  1. Estimation of relevant variables on high-dimensional biological patterns using iterated weighted kernel functions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio Rojas-Galeano

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available The analysis of complex proteomic and genomic profiles involves the identification of significant markers within a set of hundreds or even thousands of variables that represent a high-dimensional problem space. The occurrence of noise, redundancy or combinatorial interactions in the profile makes the selection of relevant variables harder.Here we propose a method to select variables based on estimated relevance to hidden patterns. Our method combines a weighted-kernel discriminant with an iterative stochastic probability estimation algorithm to discover the relevance distribution over the set of variables. We verified the ability of our method to select predefined relevant variables in synthetic proteome-like data and then assessed its performance on biological high-dimensional problems. Experiments were run on serum proteomic datasets of infectious diseases. The resulting variable subsets achieved classification accuracies of 99% on Human African Trypanosomiasis, 91% on Tuberculosis, and 91% on Malaria serum proteomic profiles with fewer than 20% of variables selected. Our method scaled-up to dimensionalities of much higher orders of magnitude as shown with gene expression microarray datasets in which we obtained classification accuracies close to 90% with fewer than 1% of the total number of variables.Our method consistently found relevant variables attaining high classification accuracies across synthetic and biological datasets. Notably, it yielded very compact subsets compared to the original number of variables, which should simplify downstream biological experimentation.

  2. Identifying biological pathway interrupting toxins using multi-tree ensembles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gergo Barta

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The pharmaceutical industry constantly seeks new ways to improve current methods that scientists use to evaluate environmental chemicals and develop new medicines. Various automated steps are involved in the process as testing hundreds of thousands of chemicals manually would be infeasible. Our research effort and the Toxicology in the 21st Century Data Challenge focused on cost-effective automation of toxicological testing, a chemical substance screening process looking for possible toxic effects caused by interrupting biological pathways. The computational models we propose in this paper successfully combine various publicly available substance fingerprinting tools with advanced machine learning techniques. In our paper, we explore the significance and utility of assorted feature selection methods as the structural analyzers generate a plethora of features for each substance. Machine learning models were carefully selected and evaluated based on their capability to cope with the high-dimensional high-variety data with multi-tree ensemble methods coming out on top. Techniques like Random forests and Extra trees combine numerous simple tree models and proved to produce reliable predictions on toxic activity while being nearly non-parametric and insensitive to dimensionality extremes. The Tox21 Data Challenge contest offered a great platform to compare a wide range of solutions in a controlled and orderly manner. The results clearly demonstrate that the generic approach presented in this paper is comparable to advanced deep learning and domain-specific solutions. Even surpassing the competition in some nuclear receptor signaling and stress pathway assays and achieving an accuracy of up to 94 percent.

  3. De novo characterization of the spleen transcriptome of the large yellow croaker (Pseudosciaena crocea and analysis of the immune relevant genes and pathways involved in the antiviral response.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yinnan Mu

    Full Text Available The large yellow croaker (Pseudosciaena crocea is an economically important marine fish in China. To understand the molecular basis for antiviral defense in this species, we used Illumia paired-end sequencing to characterize the spleen transcriptome of polyriboinosinic:polyribocytidylic acid [poly(I:C]-induced large yellow croakers. The library produced 56,355,728 reads and assembled into 108,237 contigs. As a result, 15,192 unigenes were found from this transcriptome. Gene ontology analysis showed that 4,759 genes were involved in three major functional categories: biological process, cellular component, and molecular function. We further ascertained that numerous consensus sequences were homologous to known immune-relevant genes. Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes orthology mapping annotated 5,389 unigenes and identified numerous immune-relevant pathways. These immune-relevant genes and pathways revealed major antiviral immunity effectors, including but not limited to: pattern recognition receptors, adaptors and signal transducers, the interferons and interferon-stimulated genes, inflammatory cytokines and receptors, complement components, and B-cell and T-cell antigen activation molecules. Moreover, the partial genes of Toll-like receptor signaling pathway, RIG-I-like receptors signaling pathway, Janus kinase-Signal Transducer and Activator of Transcription (JAK-STAT signaling pathway, and T-cell receptor (TCR signaling pathway were found to be changed after poly(I:C induction by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR analysis, suggesting that these signaling pathways may be regulated by poly(I:C, a viral mimic. Overall, the antivirus-related genes and signaling pathways that were identified in response to poly(I:C challenge provide valuable leads for further investigation of the antiviral defense mechanism in the large yellow croaker.

  4. De novo characterization of the spleen transcriptome of the large yellow croaker (Pseudosciaena crocea) and analysis of the immune relevant genes and pathways involved in the antiviral response

    KAUST Repository

    Mu, Yinnan

    2014-05-12

    The large yellow croaker (Pseudosciaena crocea) is an economically important marine fish in China. To understand the molecular basis for antiviral defense in this species, we used Illumia paired-end sequencing to characterize the spleen transcriptome of polyriboinosinic:polyribocytidylic acid [poly(I:C)]-induced large yellow croakers. The library produced 56,355,728 reads and assembled into 108,237 contigs. As a result, 15,192 unigenes were found from this transcriptome. Gene ontology analysis showed that 4,759 genes were involved in three major functional categories: biological process, cellular component, and molecular function. We further ascertained that numerous consensus sequences were homologous to known immune-relevant genes. Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes orthology mapping annotated 5,389 unigenes and identified numerous immune-relevant pathways. These immune-relevant genes and pathways revealed major antiviral immunity effectors, including but not limited to: pattern recognition receptors, adaptors and signal transducers, the interferons and interferon-stimulated genes, inflammatory cytokines and receptors, complement components, and B-cell and T-cell antigen activation molecules. Moreover, the partial genes of Toll-like receptor signaling pathway, RIG-I-like receptors signaling pathway, Janus kinase-Signal Transducer and Activator of Transcription (JAK-STAT) signaling pathway, and T-cell receptor (TCR) signaling pathway were found to be changed after poly(I:C) induction by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis, suggesting that these signaling pathways may be regulated by poly(I:C), a viral mimic. Overall, the antivirus-related genes and signaling pathways that were identified in response to poly(I:C) challenge provide valuable leads for further investigation of the antiviral defense mechanism in the large yellow croaker. © 2014 Mu et al.

  5. Systems analysis of gene ontology and biological pathways involved in post-myocardial infarction responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Nguyen T; Lindsey, Merry L; Jin, Yu-Fang

    2015-01-01

    Pathway analysis has been widely used to gain insight into essential mechanisms of the response to myocardial infarction (MI). Currently, there exist multiple pathway databases that organize molecular datasets and manually curate pathway maps for biological interpretation at varying forms of organization. However, inconsistencies among different databases in pathway descriptions, frequently due to conflicting results in the literature, can generate incorrect interpretations. Furthermore, although pathway analysis software provides detailed images of interactions among molecules, it does not exhibit how pathways interact with one another or with other biological processes under specific conditions. We propose a novel method to standardize descriptions of enriched pathways for a set of genes/proteins using Gene Ontology terms. We used this method to examine the relationships among pathways and biological processes for a set of condition-specific genes/proteins, represented as a functional biological pathway-process network. We applied this algorithm to a set of 613 MI-specific proteins we previously identified. A total of 96 pathways from Biocarta, KEGG, and Reactome, and 448 Gene Ontology Biological Processes were enriched with these 613 proteins. The pathways were represented as Boolean functions of biological processes, delivering an interactive scheme to organize enriched information with an emphasis on involvement of biological processes in pathways. We extracted a network focusing on MI to demonstrate that tyrosine phosphorylation of Signal Transducer and Activator of Transcription (STAT) protein, positive regulation of collagen metabolic process, coagulation, and positive/negative regulation of blood coagulation have immediate impacts on the MI response. Our method organized biological processes and pathways in an unbiased approach to provide an intuitive way to identify biological properties of pathways under specific conditions. Pathways from different

  6. Informatics approaches in the Biological Characterization of Adverse Outcome Pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adverse Outcome Pathways (AOPs) are a conceptual framework to characterize toxicity pathways by a series of mechanistic steps from a molecular initiating event to population outcomes. This framework helps to direct risk assessment research, for example by aiding in computational ...

  7. Isotopes in geobiochemistry: tracing metabolic pathways in microorganisms of environmental relevance with stable isotopes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adrian, Lorenz; Marco-Urrea, Ernest

    2016-10-01

    Stable isotopes are flexibly used as tracers to investigate environmental processes, microorganisms responsible for environmental transformations, syntrophic relationships in consortia, and metabolic pathways. With the advent of widely accessible high-resolution, highly accurate and sensitive mass spectrometers connected to liquid chromatography (LC-MS/MS) and the explosion of microbial genome sequence information the options to apply stable isotope tracers to geobiochemical topics have multiplied. With methods at hand to analyze biochemical pathways and enzymatic functions of yet-uncultivated microorganisms even in mixed cultures, a wide field of new discoveries can be expected. Applications rely both on the high sensitivity to detect trace amounts of biological material in slow or non-growing cultures and on the high multi-dimensional resolution of LC-MS/MS to allow the separation of complex samples and to retrieve phylogenetic information. Challenges and examples of stable isotope applications to describe geobiochemical processes are reviewed. Overall, the potential is not yet sufficiently deployed. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Relevant uses of surface proteins – display on self‐organized biological structures

    OpenAIRE

    Jahns, Anika C.; Rehm, Bernd H. A.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Proteins are often found attached to surfaces of self‐assembling biological units such as whole microbial cells or subcellular structures, e.g. intracellular inclusions. In the last two decades surface proteins were identified that could serve as anchors for the display of foreign protein functions. Extensive protein engineering based on structure–function data enabled efficient display of technically and/or medically relevant protein functions. Small size, diversity of the anchor pro...

  9. AN INTEGRATED NETWORK APPROACH TO IDENTIFYING BIOLOGICAL PATHWAYS AND ENVIRONMENTAL EXPOSURE INTERACTIONS IN COMPLEX DISEASES.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darabos, Christian; Qiu, Jingya; Moore, Jason H

    2016-01-01

    Complex diseases are the result of intricate interactions between genetic, epigenetic and environmental factors. In previous studies, we used epidemiological and genetic data linking environmental exposure or genetic variants to phenotypic disease to construct Human Phenotype Networks and separately analyze the effects of both environment and genetic factors on disease interactions. To better capture the intricacies of the interactions between environmental exposure and the biological pathways in complex disorders, we integrate both aspects into a single "tripartite" network. Despite extensive research, the mechanisms by which chemical agents disrupt biological pathways are still poorly understood. In this study, we use our integrated network model to identify specific biological pathway candidates possibly disrupted by environmental agents. We conjecture that a higher number of co-occurrences between an environmental substance and biological pathway pair can be associated with a higher likelihood that the substance is involved in disrupting that pathway. We validate our model by demonstrating its ability to detect known arsenic and signal transduction pathway interactions and speculate on candidate cell-cell junction organization pathways disrupted by cadmium. The validation was supported by distinct publications of cell biology and genetic studies that associated environmental exposure to pathway disruption. The integrated network approach is a novel method for detecting the biological effects of environmental exposures. A better understanding of the molecular processes associated with specific environmental exposures will help in developing targeted molecular therapies for patients who have been exposed to the toxicity of environmental chemicals.

  10. Identification of common biological pathways and drug targets across multiple respiratory viruses based on human host gene expression analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven B Smith

    Full Text Available Pandemic and seasonal respiratory viruses are a major global health concern. Given the genetic diversity of respiratory viruses and the emergence of drug resistant strains, the targeted disruption of human host-virus interactions is a potential therapeutic strategy for treating multi-viral infections. The availability of large-scale genomic datasets focused on host-pathogen interactions can be used to discover novel drug targets as well as potential opportunities for drug repositioning.In this study, we performed a large-scale analysis of microarray datasets involving host response to infections by influenza A virus, respiratory syncytial virus, rhinovirus, SARS-coronavirus, metapneumonia virus, coxsackievirus and cytomegalovirus. Common genes and pathways were found through a rigorous, iterative analysis pipeline where relevant host mRNA expression datasets were identified, analyzed for quality and gene differential expression, then mapped to pathways for enrichment analysis. Possible repurposed drugs targets were found through database and literature searches. A total of 67 common biological pathways were identified among the seven different respiratory viruses analyzed, representing fifteen laboratories, nine different cell types, and seven different array platforms. A large overlap in the general immune response was observed among the top twenty of these 67 pathways, adding validation to our analysis strategy. Of the top five pathways, we found 53 differentially expressed genes affected by at least five of the seven viruses. We suggest five new therapeutic indications for existing small molecules or biological agents targeting proteins encoded by the genes F3, IL1B, TNF, CASP1 and MMP9. Pathway enrichment analysis also identified a potential novel host response, the Parkin-Ubiquitin Proteasomal System (Parkin-UPS pathway, which is known to be involved in the progression of neurodegenerative Parkinson's disease.Our study suggests that

  11. cPath: open source software for collecting, storing, and querying biological pathways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gross Benjamin E

    2006-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Biological pathways, including metabolic pathways, protein interaction networks, signal transduction pathways, and gene regulatory networks, are currently represented in over 220 diverse databases. These data are crucial for the study of specific biological processes, including human diseases. Standard exchange formats for pathway information, such as BioPAX, CellML, SBML and PSI-MI, enable convenient collection of this data for biological research, but mechanisms for common storage and communication are required. Results We have developed cPath, an open source database and web application for collecting, storing, and querying biological pathway data. cPath makes it easy to aggregate custom pathway data sets available in standard exchange formats from multiple databases, present pathway data to biologists via a customizable web interface, and export pathway data via a web service to third-party software, such as Cytoscape, for visualization and analysis. cPath is software only, and does not include new pathway information. Key features include: a built-in identifier mapping service for linking identical interactors and linking to external resources; built-in support for PSI-MI and BioPAX standard pathway exchange formats; a web service interface for searching and retrieving pathway data sets; and thorough documentation. The cPath software is freely available under the LGPL open source license for academic and commercial use. Conclusion cPath is a robust, scalable, modular, professional-grade software platform for collecting, storing, and querying biological pathways. It can serve as the core data handling component in information systems for pathway visualization, analysis and modeling.

  12. MO-DE-207B-03: Improved Cancer Classification Using Patient-Specific Biological Pathway Information Via Gene Expression Data

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Young, M; Craft, D [Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA (United States)

    2016-06-15

    cancer classification using biological pathways. Patients are classified with greater specificity and physiological relevance as compared to current gene-specific approaches. Focus now moves to utilizing PICS for pan-cancer patient-specific treatment response prediction.

  13. Unaffected features of BSA stabilized Ag nanoparticles after storage and reconstitution in biological relevant media.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valenti, Laura E; Giacomelli, Carla E

    2015-08-01

    Silver-coated orthopedic implants and silver composite materials have been proposed to produce local biocidal activity at low dose to reduce post-surgery infection that remains one of the major contributions to the patient morbidity. This work presents the synthesis combined with the characterization, colloidal stability in biological relevant media, antimicrobial activity and handling properties of silver nanoparticles (Ag-NP) before and after freeze dry and storage. The nanomaterial was synthesized in aqueous solution with simple, reproducible and low-cost strategies using bovine serum albumin (BSA) as the stabilizing agent. Ag-NP were characterized by means of the size distribution and morphology (UV-vis spectra, dynamic light scattering measurements and TEM images), charge as a function of the pH (zeta potential measurements) and colloidal stability in biological relevant media (UV-vis spectra and dynamic light scattering measurements). Further, the interactions between the protein and Ag-NP were evaluated by surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) and the antimicrobial activity was tested with two bacteria strains (namely Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis) mainly present in the infections caused by implants and prosthesis in orthopedic surgery. Finally, the Ag-NP dispersed in aqueous solution were dried and stored as long-lasting powders that were easily reconstituted without losing their stability and antimicrobial properties. The proposed methods to stabilize Ag-NP not only produce stable dispersions in media of biological relevance but also long-lasting powders with optimal antimicrobial activity in the nanomolar range. This level is much lower than the cytotoxicity determined in vitro on osteoblasts, osteoclasts and osteoarthritic chondrocytes. The synthesized Ag-NP can be incorporated as additive of biomaterials or pharmaceutical products to confer antimicrobial activity in a powdered form in different formulations, dispersed in

  14. Modelling low energy electron and positron tracks in biologically relevant media

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Blanco, F.; Munoz, A.; Almeida, D.; Ferreira da Silva, F.; Limao-Vieira, P.; Fuss, M.C.; Sanz, A.G.; Garcia, G.

    2013-01-01

    This colloquium describes an approach to incorporate into radiation damage models the effect of low and intermediate energy (0-100 eV) electrons and positrons, slowing down in biologically relevant materials (water and representative biomolecules). The core of the modelling procedure is a C++ computing programme named 'Low Energy Particle Track Simulation (LEPTS)', which is compatible with available general purpose Monte Carlo packages. Input parameters are carefully selected from theoretical and experimental cross section data and energy loss distribution functions. Data sources used for this purpose are reviewed showing examples of electron and positron cross section and energy loss data for interactions with different media of increasing complexity: atoms, molecules, clusters and condense matter. Finally, we show how such a model can be used to develop an effective dosimetric tool at the molecular level (i.e. nanodosimetry). Recent experimental developments to study the fragmentation induced in biologically material by charge transfer from neutrals and negative ions are also included. (authors)

  15. Brain processing of biologically relevant odors in the awake rat, as revealed by manganese-enhanced MRI.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benoist Lehallier

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: So far, an overall view of olfactory structures activated by natural biologically relevant odors in the awake rat is not available. Manganese-enhanced MRI (MEMRI is appropriate for this purpose. While MEMRI has been used for anatomical labeling of olfactory pathways, functional imaging analyses have not yet been performed beyond the olfactory bulb. Here, we have used MEMRI for functional imaging of rat central olfactory structures and for comparing activation maps obtained with odors conveying different biological messages. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Odors of male fox feces and of chocolate flavored cereals were used to stimulate conscious rats previously treated by intranasal instillation of manganese (Mn. MEMRI activation maps showed Mn enhancement all along the primary olfactory cortex. Mn enhancement elicited by male fox feces odor and to a lesser extent that elicited by chocolate odor, differed from that elicited by deodorized air. This result was partly confirmed by c-Fos immunohistochemistry in the piriform cortex. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: By providing an overall image of brain structures activated in awake rats by odorous stimulation, and by showing that Mn enhancement is differently sensitive to different stimulating odors, the present results demonstrate the interest of MEMRI for functional studies of olfaction in the primary olfactory cortex of laboratory small animals, under conditions close to natural perception. Finally, the factors that may cause the variability of the MEMRI signal in response to different odor are discussed.

  16. Brain processing of biologically relevant odors in the awake rat, as revealed by manganese-enhanced MRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehallier, Benoist; Rampin, Olivier; Saint-Albin, Audrey; Jérôme, Nathalie; Ouali, Christian; Maurin, Yves; Bonny, Jean-Marie

    2012-01-01

    So far, an overall view of olfactory structures activated by natural biologically relevant odors in the awake rat is not available. Manganese-enhanced MRI (MEMRI) is appropriate for this purpose. While MEMRI has been used for anatomical labeling of olfactory pathways, functional imaging analyses have not yet been performed beyond the olfactory bulb. Here, we have used MEMRI for functional imaging of rat central olfactory structures and for comparing activation maps obtained with odors conveying different biological messages. Odors of male fox feces and of chocolate flavored cereals were used to stimulate conscious rats previously treated by intranasal instillation of manganese (Mn). MEMRI activation maps showed Mn enhancement all along the primary olfactory cortex. Mn enhancement elicited by male fox feces odor and to a lesser extent that elicited by chocolate odor, differed from that elicited by deodorized air. This result was partly confirmed by c-Fos immunohistochemistry in the piriform cortex. By providing an overall image of brain structures activated in awake rats by odorous stimulation, and by showing that Mn enhancement is differently sensitive to different stimulating odors, the present results demonstrate the interest of MEMRI for functional studies of olfaction in the primary olfactory cortex of laboratory small animals, under conditions close to natural perception. Finally, the factors that may cause the variability of the MEMRI signal in response to different odor are discussed.

  17. The Biological Connection Markup Language: a SBGN-compliant format for visualization, filtering and analysis of biological pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beltrame, Luca; Calura, Enrica; Popovici, Razvan R; Rizzetto, Lisa; Guedez, Damariz Rivero; Donato, Michele; Romualdi, Chiara; Draghici, Sorin; Cavalieri, Duccio

    2011-08-01

    Many models and analysis of signaling pathways have been proposed. However, neither of them takes into account that a biological pathway is not a fixed system, but instead it depends on the organism, tissue and cell type as well as on physiological, pathological and experimental conditions. The Biological Connection Markup Language (BCML) is a format to describe, annotate and visualize pathways. BCML is able to store multiple information, permitting a selective view of the pathway as it exists and/or behave in specific organisms, tissues and cells. Furthermore, BCML can be automatically converted into data formats suitable for analysis and into a fully SBGN-compliant graphical representation, making it an important tool that can be used by both computational biologists and 'wet lab' scientists. The XML schema and the BCML software suite are freely available under the LGPL for download at http://bcml.dc-atlas.net. They are implemented in Java and supported on MS Windows, Linux and OS X.

  18. Past-Forwarding Ancient Calamities. Pathways for Making Archaeology Relevant in Disaster Risk Reduction Research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felix Riede

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Despite the alleged mastery of humans over nature, contemporary societies are acutely vulnerable to natural hazards. In interaction with vulnerable communities, these transform into catastrophes. In a deep historical perspective, human communities of many different kinds have been affected by numerous kinds of natural disasters that may provide useful data for scenario-based risk reduction measures vis-à-vis future calamities. The low frequency of high magnitude hazards necessitates a deep time perspective for understanding both the natural and human dimensions of such events in an evidence-based manner. This paper focusses on the eruption of the Laacher See volcano in western Germany about 13,000 years ago as an example of such a rare, but potentially highly devastating event. It merges Lee Clarke’s sociological argument for also thinking about such very rare events in disaster planning and David Staley’s notion of thinking historically about the future in order to ‘past-forward’ such information on past constellations of vulnerability and resilience. ‘Past-forwarding’ is here intended to signal the use of such deep historical information in concerns for contemporary and future resilience. This paper outlines two pathways for making archaeological information on past extreme environmental events relevant in disaster risk reduction: First, the combination of information from the geosciences and the humanities holds the potential to transform ancient hazards from matters of fact to matters of concern and, hence, to more effectively raise awareness of the issues concerned. Second, in addition to information on past calamities feeding into preparatory scenarios, I argue that the well-established outreach channels available to the humanities (museums, in particular provide powerful platforms for communication to multiple publics.

  19. Review of biological factors relevant to import risk assessments for epizootic ulcerative syndrome (Aphanomyces invadans).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oidtmann, B

    2012-02-01

    Epizootic ulcerative syndrome (EUS) is a disease affecting both wild and farmed fish in freshwater and estuarine environments. After it was first described in Japan in 1971, the disease has spread widely across Asia and to some regions of Australia, North America and Africa. In Asia and Africa, the spread of the disease has substantially affected livelihoods of fish farmers and fishermen. No reports are yet published showing the presence of the disease in Europe or South America. Given its epizootic nature and its broad susceptible fish species range, it would appear that the disease has the potential for further spread. This study provides a review of the scientific literature on several biological factors of the pathogen, Aphanomyces invadans, associated with the disease EUS and aspects of the disease that are relevant to undertaking import risk assessments (IRA) covering (i) Life cycle and routes of transmission; (ii) Minimum infectious dose; (iii) Tissue localization and pathogen load; (iv) Predisposing factors for infection and factors influencing expression of disease; (v) Carrier state in fish; (vi) Diagnostic methods; (vii) Survival in the environment; (viii) Permissive temperature range; (ix) Stability of the agent in aquatic animal products; (x) Prevalence of infection; and (xi) Affected life stages. Much of the biological information presented is relevant to a broad range of risk questions. Areas where data are lacking were identified, and the information provided is put into context with other aspects that need to be addressed in an IRA. © 2011 Crown copyright.

  20. Inactivation of the antibacterial and cytotoxic properties of silver ions by biologically relevant compounds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geraldine Mulley

    Full Text Available There has been a recent surge in the use of silver as an antimicrobial agent in a wide range of domestic and clinical products, intended to prevent or treat bacterial infections and reduce bacterial colonization of surfaces. It has been reported that the antibacterial and cytotoxic properties of silver are affected by the assay conditions, particularly the type of growth media used in vitro. The toxicity of Ag+ to bacterial cells is comparable to that of human cells. We demonstrate that biologically relevant compounds such as glutathione, cysteine and human blood components significantly reduce the toxicity of silver ions to clinically relevant pathogenic bacteria and primary human dermal fibroblasts (skin cells. Bacteria are able to grow normally in the presence of silver nitrate at >20-fold the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC if Ag+ and thiols are added in a 1:1 ratio because the reaction of Ag+ with extracellular thiols prevents silver ions from interacting with cells. Extracellular thiols and human serum also significantly reduce the antimicrobial activity of silver wound dressings Aquacel-Ag (Convatec and Acticoat (Smith & Nephew to Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Escherichia coli in vitro. These results have important implications for the deployment of silver as an antimicrobial agent in environments exposed to biological tissue or secretions. Significant amounts of money and effort have been directed at the development of silver-coated medical devices (e.g. dressings, catheters, implants. We believe our findings are essential for the effective design and testing of antimicrobial silver coatings.

  1. Comparison of the perceived relevance of oral biology reported by students and interns of a Pakistani dental college.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farooq, I; Ali, S

    2014-11-01

    The purpose of this study was to analyse and compare the perceived relevance of oral biology with dentistry as reported by dental students and interns and to investigate the most popular teaching approach and learning resource. A questionnaire aiming to ask about the relevance of oral biology to dentistry, most popular teaching method and learning resource was utilised in this study. Study groups encompassed second-year dental students who had completed their course and dental interns. The data were obtained and analysed statistically. The overall response rate for both groups was 60%. Both groups reported high relevance of oral biology to dentistry. Perception of dental interns regarding the relevance of oral biology to dentistry was higher than that of students. Both groups identified student presentations as the most important teaching method. Amongst the most important learning resources, textbooks were considered most imperative by interns, whereas lecture handouts received the highest importance score by students. Dental students and interns considered oral biology to be relevant to dentistry, although greater relevance was reported by interns. Year-wise advancement in dental education and training improves the perception of the students about the relevance of oral biology to dentistry. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  2. Radiotracers For Lipid Signaling Pathways In Biological Systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gatley, S. J. [Northeastern Univ., Boston, MA (United States)

    2016-09-26

    The primary focus of this project continues to be the development of radiotracers and radiotracer methodology for studying physiology and biochemistry. The compounds that have been labeled areacylethanolamines and acylglycerols that are, as classes, represented in both in plants and in animals. In the latter, some of these act as ligands for cannabinoid receptors and they are therefore known as endocannabinoids. Cannabinoid receptors are not found in plant genomes so that plants must contain other receptors and signaling systems that use acylethanolamines. Relatively little work has been done on that issue, though acylethanolamines do modulate plant growth and stress resistance, thus possessing obvious relevance to agriculture and energy production. Progress has been described in five peer-reviewed papers and seven meeting abstracts. Preparation of 2-acylglycerol lipid messengers in high purity. A novel enzymatic synthesis was developedthat gave pure 2-acylglycerols free of any rearrrangement to the thermodynamically more stable 1(3)-acylglycerol byproducts. The method utilized 1,3-dibutyryl-2-acylglycerol substrate ethanolysis by a resinimobilized lipase. Thus, pure radiolabeled 2-acylglycerols can now be conveniently prepared just prior to their utilization. These synthetic studies were published in the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, 2011. Diacylglycerol lipase assay methodology. Diacylglycerol lipases (DAGLs) generate 2- acylglycerols, and are thus potential targets for disease- or growth-modifying agents, by means of reducing formation of 2-acylglycerols. A radioTLC assay of the hydrolysis of radiolabeled diglyceride substrate [1''-carbon-14]2-arachidonoyl-1-stearoyl-sn-glycerol has been implemented, and used to validate a novel, potentially highthroughput fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) based assay. A number of new DAGL inhibitors that have selectivity for DAGLs were synthesized and screened. This work was very recently published in

  3. Pathway Tools version 19.0 update: software for pathway/genome informatics and systems biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Latendresse, Mario; Paley, Suzanne M.; Krummenacker, Markus; Ong, Quang D.; Billington, Richard; Kothari, Anamika; Weaver, Daniel; Lee, Thomas; Subhraveti, Pallavi; Spaulding, Aaron; Fulcher, Carol; Keseler, Ingrid M.; Caspi, Ron

    2016-01-01

    Pathway Tools is a bioinformatics software environment with a broad set of capabilities. The software provides genome-informatics tools such as a genome browser, sequence alignments, a genome-variant analyzer and comparative-genomics operations. It offers metabolic-informatics tools, such as metabolic reconstruction, quantitative metabolic modeling, prediction of reaction atom mappings and metabolic route search. Pathway Tools also provides regulatory-informatics tools, such as the ability to represent and visualize a wide range of regulatory interactions. This article outlines the advances in Pathway Tools in the past 5 years. Major additions include components for metabolic modeling, metabolic route search, computation of atom mappings and estimation of compound Gibbs free energies of formation; addition of editors for signaling pathways, for genome sequences and for cellular architecture; storage of gene essentiality data and phenotype data; display of multiple alignments, and of signaling and electron-transport pathways; and development of Python and web-services application programming interfaces. Scientists around the world have created more than 9800 Pathway/Genome Databases by using Pathway Tools, many of which are curated databases for important model organisms. PMID:26454094

  4. Expansion of biological pathways based on evolutionary inference.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yang; Calvo, Sarah E; Gutman, Roee; Liu, Jun S; Mootha, Vamsi K

    2014-07-03

    The availability of diverse genomes makes it possible to predict gene function based on shared evolutionary history. This approach can be challenging, however, for pathways whose components do not exhibit a shared history but rather consist of distinct "evolutionary modules." We introduce a computational algorithm, clustering by inferred models of evolution (CLIME), which inputs a eukaryotic species tree, homology matrix, and pathway (gene set) of interest. CLIME partitions the gene set into disjoint evolutionary modules, simultaneously learning the number of modules and a tree-based evolutionary history that defines each module. CLIME then expands each module by scanning the genome for new components that likely arose under the inferred evolutionary model. Application of CLIME to ∼1,000 annotated human pathways and to the proteomes of yeast, red algae, and malaria reveals unanticipated evolutionary modularity and coevolving components. CLIME is freely available and should become increasingly powerful with the growing wealth of eukaryotic genomes. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Gene Expression Profiling of Biological Pathway Alterations by Radiation Exposure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kuei-Fang Lee

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Though damage caused by radiation has been the focus of rigorous research, the mechanisms through which radiation exerts harmful effects on cells are complex and not well-understood. In particular, the influence of low dose radiation exposure on the regulation of genes and pathways remains unclear. In an attempt to investigate the molecular alterations induced by varying doses of radiation, a genome-wide expression analysis was conducted. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells were collected from five participants and each sample was subjected to 0.5 Gy, 1 Gy, 2.5 Gy, and 5 Gy of cobalt 60 radiation, followed by array-based expression profiling. Gene set enrichment analysis indicated that the immune system and cancer development pathways appeared to be the major affected targets by radiation exposure. Therefore, 1 Gy radioactive exposure seemed to be a critical threshold dosage. In fact, after 1 Gy radiation exposure, expression levels of several genes including FADD, TNFRSF10B, TNFRSF8, TNFRSF10A, TNFSF10, TNFSF8, CASP1, and CASP4 that are associated with carcinogenesis and metabolic disorders showed significant alterations. Our results suggest that exposure to low-dose radiation may elicit changes in metabolic and immune pathways, potentially increasing the risk of immune dysfunctions and metabolic disorders.

  6. ANIMO: a tool for modeling biological pathway dynamics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schivo, Stefano; Scholma, Jetse; Karperien, Hermanus Bernardus Johannes; Langerak, Romanus; van de Pol, Jan Cornelis; Post, Janine Nicole

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Computational methods are applied with increasing success to the analysis of complex biological systems. However, their adoption is sometimes made difficult by requiring prior knowledge about the foundations of such methods, which often come from a different branch of science. The

  7. Improving the Timed Automata Approach to Biological Pathway Dynamics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Langerak, R.; Pol, Jaco van de; Post, Janine N.; Schivo, Stefano; Aceto, Luca; Bacci, Giorgio; Bacci, Giovanni; Ingólfsdóttir, Anna; Legay, Axel; Mardare, Radu

    2017-01-01

    Biological systems such as regulatory or gene networks can be seen as a particular type of distributed systems, and for this reason they can be modeled within the Timed Automata paradigm, which was developed in the computer science context. However, tools designed to model distributed systems often

  8. Integrating genomic alterations in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma identifies new relevant pathways and potential therapeutic targets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karube, K; Enjuanes, A; Dlouhy, I; Jares, P; Martin-Garcia, D; Nadeu, F; Ordóñez, G R; Rovira, J; Clot, G; Royo, C; Navarro, A; Gonzalez-Farre, B; Vaghefi, A; Castellano, G; Rubio-Perez, C; Tamborero, D; Briones, J; Salar, A; Sancho, J M; Mercadal, S; Gonzalez-Barca, E; Escoda, L; Miyoshi, H; Ohshima, K; Miyawaki, K; Kato, K; Akashi, K; Mozos, A; Colomo, L; Alcoceba, M; Valera, A; Carrió, A; Costa, D; Lopez-Bigas, N; Schmitz, R; Staudt, L M; Salaverria, I; López-Guillermo, A; Campo, E

    2018-01-01

    Genome studies of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) have revealed a large number of somatic mutations and structural alterations. However, the clinical significance of these alterations is still not well defined. In this study, we have integrated the analysis of targeted next-generation sequencing of 106 genes and genomic copy number alterations (CNA) in 150 DLBCL. The clinically significant findings were validated in an independent cohort of 111 patients. Germinal center B-cell and activated B-cell DLBCL had a differential profile of mutations, altered pathogenic pathways and CNA. Mutations in genes of the NOTCH pathway and tumor suppressor genes (TP53/CDKN2A), but not individual genes, conferred an unfavorable prognosis, confirmed in the independent validation cohort. A gene expression profiling analysis showed that tumors with NOTCH pathway mutations had a significant modulation of downstream target genes, emphasizing the relevance of this pathway in DLBCL. An in silico drug discovery analysis recognized 69 (46%) cases carrying at least one genomic alteration considered a potential target of drug response according to early clinical trials or preclinical assays in DLBCL or other lymphomas. In conclusion, this study identifies relevant pathways and mutated genes in DLBCL and recognizes potential targets for new intervention strategies. PMID:28804123

  9. Biologically relevant photoacoustic imaging phantoms with tunable optical and acoustic properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogt, William C.; Jia, Congxian; Wear, Keith A.; Garra, Brian S.; Joshua Pfefer, T.

    2016-10-01

    Established medical imaging technologies such as magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography rely on well-validated tissue-simulating phantoms for standardized testing of device image quality. The availability of high-quality phantoms for optical-acoustic diagnostics such as photoacoustic tomography (PAT) will facilitate standardization and clinical translation of these emerging approaches. Materials used in prior PAT phantoms do not provide a suitable combination of long-term stability and realistic acoustic and optical properties. Therefore, we have investigated the use of custom polyvinyl chloride plastisol (PVCP) formulations for imaging phantoms and identified a dual-plasticizer approach that provides biologically relevant ranges of relevant properties. Speed of sound and acoustic attenuation were determined over a frequency range of 4 to 9 MHz and optical absorption and scattering over a wavelength range of 400 to 1100 nm. We present characterization of several PVCP formulations, including one designed to mimic breast tissue. This material is used to construct a phantom comprised of an array of cylindrical, hemoglobin-filled inclusions for evaluation of penetration depth. Measurements with a custom near-infrared PAT imager provide quantitative and qualitative comparisons of phantom and tissue images. Results indicate that our PVCP material is uniquely suitable for PAT system image quality evaluation and may provide a practical tool for device validation and intercomparison.

  10. Relevance of the palatal protein kinase A pathway to the pathogenesis of cleft palate by secalonic acid D in mice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dhulipala, Vamsidhara C.; Hanumegowda, Umesh M.; Balasubramanian, Ganesh; Reddy, Chada S.

    2004-01-01

    Secalonic acid-D (SAD) is a teratogenic mycotoxin inducing cleft palate (CP) in the offspring of the exposed mice by reducing palatal shelf size secondary to reduced proliferation of the palatal mesenchymal (PM) cells. Co-administration of dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO) reversed the CP-inducing effect of SAD. Although SAD has been shown to affect both protein kinases A (PKA) and C (PKC) pathways, the relevance of each of these pathways to its CP induction is unknown. The present studies were designed to test the hypothesis that the protective effect of DMSO is mediated by its specific reversal of the effect(s) of SAD on one of these two pathways using ELISA-based activity assays, Western blot analysis, electrophoretic mobility shift assays (EMSA), and murine embryonic PM (MEPM) cell growth in culture. Within the PKA pathway, SAD inhibited the activity of the catalytic subunit of PKA and its migration into the nucleus, elevated phosphorylated cyclic AMP (cAMP) response element (CRE)-binding protein (pCREB) level, and reduced the binding of CREB to CRE. In the PKC pathway, SAD reduced the activity of PKC and the binding of transcription factors (TF) to 12-O-tetradecanoate-13 phorbol acetate-response element (TRE). SAD also inhibited MEPM cell growth and the expression of the CRE- and TRE-containing gene, proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA). Reversal, by DMSO, of the effects of SAD on MEPM cell growth, on PCNA expression and on all components of the PKA, but not of PKC, pathway suggests that the perturbation of the PKA pathway by SAD is relevant to its induction of CP in mice

  11. 6,7-dimethoxy-coumarin as a probe of hydration dynamics in biologically relevant systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghose, Avisek; Amaro, Mariana; Kovaricek, Petr; Hof, Martin; Sykora, Jan

    2018-04-01

    Coumarin derivatives are well known fluorescence reporters for investigating biological systems due to their strong micro-environment sensitivity. Despite having wide range of environment sensitive fluorescence probes, the potential of 6,7-dimethoxy-coumarin has not been studied extensively so far. With a perspective of its use in protein studies, namely using the unnatural amino acid technology or as a substrate for hydrolase enzymes, we study acetyloxymethyl-6,7-dimethoxycoumarin (Ac-DMC). We investigate the photophysics and hydration dynamics of this dye in aerosol-OT (AOT) reverse micelles at various water contents using the time dependent fluorescence shift (TDFS) method. The TDFS response in AOT reverse micelles from water/surfactant ratio of 0 to 20 confirms its sensitivity towards the hydration and mobility of its microenvironment. Moreover, we show that the fluorophore can be efficiently quenched by halide ions. Hence, we conclude that the 6,7-dimethoxy-methylcoumarin fluorophore is useful for studying hydration parameters in biologically relevant systems.

  12. Molecular crowding has no effect on the dilution thermodynamics of the biologically relevant cation mixtures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Głogocka, Daria; Przybyło, Magdalena; Langner, Marek

    2017-04-01

    The ionic composition of intracellular space is rigorously maintained in the expense of high-energy expenditure. It has been recently postulated that the cytoplasmic ionic composition is optimized so the energy cost of the fluctuations of calcium ion concentration is minimized. Specifically, thermodynamic arguments have been produced to show that the presence of potassium ions at concentrations higher than 100 mM reduce extend of the energy dissipation required for the dilution of calcium cations. No such effect has been measured when sodium ions were present in the solution or when the other divalent cation magnesium was diluted. The experimental observation has been interpreted as the indication of the formation of ionic clusters composed of calcium, chloride and potassium. In order to test the possibility that such clusters may be preserved in biological space, the thermodynamics of ionic mixtures dilution in solutions containing albumins and model lipid bilayers have been measured. Obtained thermograms clearly demonstrate that the energetics of calcium/potassium mixture is qualitatively different from calcium/sodium mixture indicating that the presence of the biologically relevant quantities of proteins and membrane hydrophilic surfaces do not interfere with the properties of the intracellular aqueous phase.

  13. The ChEBI reference database and ontology for biologically relevant chemistry: enhancements for 2013

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hastings, Janna; de Matos, Paula; Dekker, Adriano; Ennis, Marcus; Harsha, Bhavana; Kale, Namrata; Muthukrishnan, Venkatesh; Owen, Gareth; Turner, Steve; Williams, Mark; Steinbeck, Christoph

    2013-01-01

    ChEBI (http://www.ebi.ac.uk/chebi) is a database and ontology of chemical entities of biological interest. Over the past few years, ChEBI has continued to grow steadily in content, and has added several new features. In addition to incorporating all user-requested compounds, our annotation efforts have emphasized immunology, natural products and metabolites in many species. All database entries are now ‘is_a’ classified within the ontology, meaning that all of the chemicals are available to semantic reasoning tools that harness the classification hierarchy. We have completely aligned the ontology with the Open Biomedical Ontologies (OBO) Foundry-recommended upper level Basic Formal Ontology. Furthermore, we have aligned our chemical classification with the classification of chemical-involving processes in the Gene Ontology (GO), and as a result of this effort, the majority of chemical-involving processes in GO are now defined in terms of the ChEBI entities that participate in them. This effort necessitated incorporating many additional biologically relevant compounds. We have incorporated additional data types including reference citations, and the species and component for metabolites. Finally, our website and web services have had several enhancements, most notably the provision of a dynamic new interactive graph-based ontology visualization. PMID:23180789

  14. The clinical implications and biologic relevance of neurofilament expression in gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine neoplasms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schimmack, Simon; Lawrence, Ben; Svejda, Bernhard; Alaimo, Daniele; Schmitz-Winnenthal, Hubertus; Fischer, Lars; Büchler, Markus W; Kidd, Mark; Modlin, Irvin

    2012-05-15

    Although gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine neoplasms (GEP-NENs) exhibit widely divergent behavior, limited biologic information (apart from Ki-67) is available to characterize malignancy. Therefore, the identification of alternative biomarkers is a key unmet need. Given the role of internexin alpha (INA) in neuronal development, the authors assessed its function in neuroendocrine cell systems and the clinical implications of its expression as a GEP-NEN biomarker. Functional assays were undertaken to investigate the mechanistic role of INA in the pancreatic BON cell line. Expression levels of INA were investigated in 50 pancreatic NENs (43 primaries, 7 metastases), 43 small intestinal NENs (25 primaries, 18 metastases), normal pancreas (n = 10), small intestinal mucosa (n = 16), normal enterochromaffin (EC) cells (n = 9), mouse xenografts (n = 4) and NEN cell lines (n = 6) using quantitative polymerase chain reaction, Western blot, and immunostaining analyses. In BON cells, decreased levels of INA messenger RNA and protein were associated with the inhibition of both proliferation and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling. INA was not expressed in normal neuroendocrine cells but was overexpressed (from 2-fold to 42-fold) in NEN cell lines and murine xenografts. In pancreatic NENs, INA was overexpressed compared with pancreatic adenocarcinomas and normal pancreas (27-fold [P = .0001], and 9-fold [P = .02], respectively). INA transcripts were correlated positively with Ki-67 (correlation coefficient [r] = 0.5; P biologic information relevant to delineation of both pancreatic NEN tumor phenotypes and clinical behavior. Copyright © 2011 American Cancer Society.

  15. Dual Atrioventricular Nodal Pathways Physiology: A Review of Relevant Anatomy, Electrophysiology, and Electrocardiographic Manifestations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bhalaghuru Chokkalingam Mani, MD

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available More than half a century has passed since the concept of dual atrioventricular (AV nodal pathways physiology was conceived. Dual AV nodal pathways have been shown to be responsible for many clinical arrhythmia syndromes, most notably AV nodal reentrant tachycardia. Although there has been a considerable amount of research on this topic, the subject of dual AV nodal pathways physiology remains heavily debated and discussed. Despite advances in understanding arrhythmia mechanisms and the widespread use of invasive electrophysiologic studies, there is still disagreement on the anatomy and physiology of the AV node that is the basis of discontinuous antegrade AV conduction. The purpose of this paper is to review the concept of dual AV nodal pathways physiology and its varied electrocardiographic manifestations.

  16. [Exploration of common biological pathways for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and low birth weight].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiang, Bo; Yu, Minglan; Liang, Xuemei; Lei, Wei; Huang, Chaohua; Chen, Jing; He, Wenying; Zhang, Tao; Li, Tao; Liu, Kezhi

    2017-12-10

    To explore common biological pathways for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and low birth weight (LBW). Thei-Gsea4GwasV2 software was used to analyze the result of genome-wide association analysis (GWAS) for LBW (pathways were derived from Reactome), and nominally significant (Ppathways were tested for replication in ADHD.Significant pathways were analyzed with DAPPLE and Reatome FI software to identify genes involved in such pathways, with each cluster enriched with the gene ontology (GO). The Centiscape2.0 software was used to calculate the degree of genetic networks and the betweenness value to explore the core node (gene). Weighed gene co-expression network analysis (WGCNA) was then used to explore the co-expression of genes in these pathways.With gene expression data derived from BrainSpan, GO enrichment was carried out for each gene module. Eleven significant biological pathways was identified in association with LBW, among which two (Selenoamino acid metabolism and Diseases associated with glycosaminoglycan metabolism) were replicated during subsequent ADHD analysis. Network analysis of 130 genes in these pathways revealed that some of the sub-networksare related with morphology of cerebellum, development of hippocampus, and plasticity of synaptic structure. Upon co-expression network analysis, 120 genes passed the quality control and were found to express in 3 gene modules. These modules are mainly related to the regulation of synaptic structure and activity regulation. ADHD and LBW share some biological regulation processes. Anomalies of such proces sesmay predispose to ADHD.

  17. Rett syndrome - biological pathways leading from MECP2 to disorder phenotypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehrhart, Friederike; Coort, Susan L M; Cirillo, Elisa; Smeets, Eric; Evelo, Chris T; Curfs, Leopold M G

    2016-11-25

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a rare disease but still one of the most abundant causes for intellectual disability in females. Typical symptoms are onset at month 6-18 after normal pre- and postnatal development, loss of acquired skills and severe intellectual disability. The type and severity of symptoms are individually highly different. A single mutation in one gene, coding for methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2), is responsible for the disease. The most important action of MECP2 is regulating epigenetic imprinting and chromatin condensation, but MECP2 influences many different biological pathways on multiple levels although the molecular pathways from gene to phenotype are currently not fully understood. In this review the known changes in metabolite levels, gene expression and biological pathways in RTT are summarized, discussed how they are leading to some characteristic RTT phenotypes and therefore the gaps of knowledge are identified. Namely, which phenotypes have currently no mechanistic explanation leading back to MECP2 related pathways? As a result of this review the visualization of the biologic pathways showing MECP2 up- and downstream regulation was developed and published on WikiPathways which will serve as template for future omics data driven research. This pathway driven approach may serve as a use case for other rare diseases, too.

  18. Functional Relevance of Different Basal Ganglia Pathways Investigated in a Spiking Model with Reward Dependent Plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pierre Berthet

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The brain enables animals to behaviourally adapt in order to survive in a complex and dynamic environment, but how reward-oriented behaviours are achieved and computed by its underlying neural circuitry is an open question. To address this concern, we have developed a spiking model of the basal ganglia (BG that learns to dis-inhibit the action leading to a reward despite ongoing changes in the reward schedule. The architecture of the network features the two pathways commonly described in BG, the direct (denoted D1 and the indirect (denoted D2 pathway, as well as a loop involving striatum and the dopaminergic system. The activity of these dopaminergic neurons conveys the reward prediction error (RPE, which determines the magnitude of synaptic plasticity within the different pathways. All plastic connections implement a versatile four-factor learning rule derived from Bayesian inference that depends upon pre- and postsynaptic activity, receptor type and dopamine level. Synaptic weight updates occur in the D1 or D2 pathways depending on the sign of the RPE, and an efference copy informs upstream nuclei about the action selected. We demonstrate successful performance of the system in a multiple-choice learning task with a transiently changing reward schedule. We simulate lesioning of the various pathways and show that a condition without the D2 pathway fares worse than one without D1. Additionally, we simulate the degeneration observed in Parkinson’s disease (PD by decreasing the number of dopaminergic neurons during learning. The results suggest that the D1 pathway impairment in PD might have been overlooked. Furthermore, an analysis of the alterations in the synaptic weights shows that using the absolute reward value instead of the RPE leads to a larger change in D1.

  19. Is it biologically relevant to measure the structures of small peptides in the gas-phase?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barran, Perdita E.; Polfer, Nick C.; Campopiano, Dominic J.; Clarke, David J.; Langridge-Smith, Patrick R. R.; Langley, Ross J.; Govan, John R. W.; Maxwell, Alison; Dorin, Julia R.; Millar, Robert P.; Bowers, Michael T.

    2005-02-01

    Recent developments in sample introduction of biologically relevant molecules have heralded a new era for gas-phase methods of structural determination. One of the biggest challenges is to relate gas-phase structures, often measured in the absence of water and counter ions, with in vivo biologically active structures. An advantage of gas-phase based techniques is that a given peptide can be analysed in a variety of different forms, for example, as a function of charge state, or with additional water molecules. Molecular modelling can provide insight into experimental findings and help elucidate the differences between structural forms. Combining experiment and theory provides a thorough interrogation of candidate conformations. Here two important naturally occurring peptide systems have been examined in detail and results are assessed in terms of their biological significance. The first of these is gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH), a decapeptide which is the central regulator of the reproductive system in vertebrates. We have examined several naturally occurring variants of this peptide using Ion Mobility Mass Spectrometry and Electron Capture Dissociation (ECD) in conjunction with Fourier Transform Ion Cyclotron Mass Spectrometry (FT-ICR-MS). Candidate conformations are modelled using the AMBER force field. Single amino acid changes, for example Gly6 --> Ala6, or Ala6 --> D-Ala6, have observable effects on the gas phase structure of GnRH. It has been shown that evolutionary primary sequence variations are key to the biological activity of GnRH, and it is thought that this is due to different binding affinities at target receptors. This work provides strong evidence that this activity is structurally based. The second system examined is the relationship between the quaternary structure and activity of two novel [beta]-defensins. FT-ICR mass spectrometry has been employed to characterize di-sulphide bridging and dissociation based experiments utilised to

  20. Stimulus fear-relevance and the vicarious learning pathway to childhood fears.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Askew, Chris; Dunne, Güler; Özdil, Zehra; Reynolds, Gemma; Field, Andy P

    2013-10-01

    Enhanced fear learning for fear-relevant stimuli has been demonstrated in procedures with adults in the laboratory. Three experiments investigated the effect of stimulus fear-relevance on vicarious fear learning in children (aged 6-11 years). Pictures of stimuli with different levels of fear-relevance (flowers, caterpillars, snakes, worms, and Australian marsupials) were presented alone or together with scared faces. In line with previous studies, children's fear beliefs and avoidance preferences increased for stimuli they had seen with scared faces. However, in contrast to evidence with adults, learning was mostly similar for all stimulus types irrespective of fear-relevance. The results support a proposal that stimulus preparedness is bypassed when children observationally learn threat-related information from adults.

  1. New tools for the visualization of biological pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghosh, Tomojit; Ma, Xiaofeng; Kirby, Michael

    2018-01-01

    This paper presents several geometrically motivated techniques for the visualization of high-dimensional biological data sets. The Grassmann manifold provides a robust framework for measuring data similarity in a subspace context. Sparse radial basis function classification as a visualization technique leverages recent advances in radial basis function learning via convex optimization. In the spirit of deep belief networks, supervised centroid-encoding is proposed as a way to exploit class label information. These methods are compared to linear and nonlinear principal component analysis (autoencoders) in the context of data visualization; these approaches may perform poorly for visualization when the variance of the data is spread across more than three dimensions. In contrast, the proposed methods are shown to capture significant data structure in two or three dimensions, even when the information in the data lives in higher dimensional subspaces. To illustrate these ideas, the visualization techniques are applied to gene expression data sets that capture the host immune system's response to infection by the Ebola virus in non-human primate and collaborative cross mouse. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  2. Stability of silver nanoparticles: agglomeration and oxidation in biological relevant conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Valenti, Laura E.; Giacomelli, Carla E., E-mail: giacomel@fcq.unc.edu.ar [Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Ciudad Universitaria, Instituto de Investigaciones en Físico Química de Córdoba (INFIQC) CONICET-UNC, Departamento de Fisicoquímica, Facultad de Ciencias Químicas (Argentina)

    2017-05-15

    Silver nanoparticles (Ag-NP) are the most used nanomaterial in consumer products due to the intrinsic antimicrobial capacity of silver. However, Ag-NP may be also harmful to algae, aquatic species, mammalian cells, and higher plants because both Ag{sup +} and nanoparticles are responsible of cell damages. The oxidative dissolution of Ag-NP would proceed to completion under oxic conditions, but the rate and extent of the dissolution depend on several factors. This work correlates the effect of the capping agent (albumin and citrate) with the stability of Ag-NP towards agglomeration in simulated body fluid (SBF) and oxidation in the presence of ROS species (H{sub 2}O{sub 2}). Capping provides colloidal stability only through electrostatic means, whereas albumin acts as bulky ligands giving steric and electrostatic repulsion, inhibiting the agglomeration in SBF. However, citrate capping protects Ag-NP from dissolution to a major extent than albumin does because of its reducing power. Moreover, citrate in solution minimizes the oxidation of albumin-coated Ag-NP even after long incubation times. H{sub 2}O{sub 2}-induced dissolution proceeds to completion with Ag-NP incubated in SBF, while incubation in citrate leads to an incomplete oxidation. In short, albumin is an excellent capping agent to minimize Ag-NP agglomeration whereas citrate provides a mild-reductive medium that prevents dissolution in biological relevant media as well as in the presence of ROS species. These results provide insight into how the surface properties and media composition affect the release of Ag{sup +} from Ag-NP, related to the cell toxicity and relevant to the storage and lifetime of silver-containing nanomaterials.

  3. Stability of silver nanoparticles: agglomeration and oxidation in biological relevant conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valenti, Laura E.; Giacomelli, Carla E.

    2017-05-01

    Silver nanoparticles (Ag-NP) are the most used nanomaterial in consumer products due to the intrinsic antimicrobial capacity of silver. However, Ag-NP may be also harmful to algae, aquatic species, mammalian cells, and higher plants because both Ag+ and nanoparticles are responsible of cell damages. The oxidative dissolution of Ag-NP would proceed to completion under oxic conditions, but the rate and extent of the dissolution depend on several factors. This work correlates the effect of the capping agent (albumin and citrate) with the stability of Ag-NP towards agglomeration in simulated body fluid (SBF) and oxidation in the presence of ROS species (H2O2). Capping provides colloidal stability only through electrostatic means, whereas albumin acts as bulky ligands giving steric and electrostatic repulsion, inhibiting the agglomeration in SBF. However, citrate capping protects Ag-NP from dissolution to a major extent than albumin does because of its reducing power. Moreover, citrate in solution minimizes the oxidation of albumin-coated Ag-NP even after long incubation times. H2O2-induced dissolution proceeds to completion with Ag-NP incubated in SBF, while incubation in citrate leads to an incomplete oxidation. In short, albumin is an excellent capping agent to minimize Ag-NP agglomeration whereas citrate provides a mild-reductive medium that prevents dissolution in biological relevant media as well as in the presence of ROS species. These results provide insight into how the surface properties and media composition affect the release of Ag+ from Ag-NP, related to the cell toxicity and relevant to the storage and lifetime of silver-containing nanomaterials.

  4. Inferring hidden causal relations between pathway members using reduced Google matrix of directed biological networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    2018-01-01

    Signaling pathways represent parts of the global biological molecular network which connects them into a seamless whole through complex direct and indirect (hidden) crosstalk whose structure can change during development or in pathological conditions. We suggest a novel methodology, called Googlomics, for the structural analysis of directed biological networks using spectral analysis of their Google matrices, using parallels with quantum scattering theory, developed for nuclear and mesoscopic physics and quantum chaos. We introduce analytical “reduced Google matrix” method for the analysis of biological network structure. The method allows inferring hidden causal relations between the members of a signaling pathway or a functionally related group of genes. We investigate how the structure of hidden causal relations can be reprogrammed as a result of changes in the transcriptional network layer during cancerogenesis. The suggested Googlomics approach rigorously characterizes complex systemic changes in the wiring of large causal biological networks in a computationally efficient way. PMID:29370181

  5. Action video game players' visual search advantage extends to biologically relevant stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chisholm, Joseph D; Kingstone, Alan

    2015-07-01

    Research investigating the effects of action video game experience on cognition has demonstrated a host of performance improvements on a variety of basic tasks. Given the prevailing evidence that these benefits result from efficient control of attentional processes, there has been growing interest in using action video games as a general tool to enhance everyday attentional control. However, to date, there is little evidence indicating that the benefits of action video game playing scale up to complex settings with socially meaningful stimuli - one of the fundamental components of our natural environment. The present experiment compared action video game player (AVGP) and non-video game player (NVGP) performance on an oculomotor capture task that presented participants with face stimuli. In addition, the expression of a distractor face was manipulated to assess if action video game experience modulated the effect of emotion. Results indicate that AVGPs experience less oculomotor capture than NVGPs; an effect that was not influenced by the emotional content depicted by distractor faces. It is noteworthy that this AVGP advantage emerged despite participants being unaware that the investigation had to do with video game playing, and participants being equivalent in their motivation and treatment of the task as a game. The results align with the notion that action video game experience is associated with superior attentional and oculomotor control, and provides evidence that these benefits can generalize to more complex and biologically relevant stimuli. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Extracellular membrane vesicles in blood products-biology and clinical relevance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emilija Krstova Krajnc

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Extracellular membrane vesicles are fragments shed from plasma membranes off all cell types that are undergoing apoptosis or are being subjected to various types of stimulation or stress.  Even in the process of programmed cell death (apoptosis, cell fall apart of varying size vesicles. They expose phosphatidylserine (PS on the outer leaflet of their membrane, and bear surface membrane antigens reflecting their cellular origin. Extracellular membrane vesicles have been isolated from many types of biological fluids, including serum, cerebrospinal fluid, urine, saliva, tears and conditioned culture medium. Flow cytometry is one of the many different methodological approaches that have been used to analyze EMVs. The method attempts to characterize the EMVs cellular origin, size, population, number, and structure. EMVs are present and accumulate in blood products (erythrocytes, platelets as well as in fresh frozen plasma during storage. The aim of this review is to highlight the importance of extracellular vesicles as a cell-to-cell communication system and the role in the pathogenesis of different diseases. Special emphasis will be given to the implication of extracellular membrane vesicles in blood products and their clinical relevance. Although our understanding of the role of  EMVs in disease is far from comprehensive, they display promise as biomarkers for different diseases in the future and also as a marker of quality and safety in the quality control of blood products.

  7. The Integrin Receptor in Biologically Relevant Bilayers: Insights from Molecular Dynamics Simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalli, Antreas C; Rog, Tomasz; Vattulainen, Ilpo; Campbell, Iain D; Sansom, Mark S P

    2017-08-01

    Integrins are heterodimeric (αβ) cell surface receptors that are potential therapeutic targets for a number of diseases. Despite the existence of structural data for all parts of integrins, the structure of the complete integrin receptor is still not available. We have used available structural data to construct a model of the complete integrin receptor in complex with talin F2-F3 domain. It has been shown that the interactions of integrins with their lipid environment are crucial for their function but details of the integrin/lipid interactions remain elusive. In this study an integrin/talin complex was inserted in biologically relevant bilayers that resemble the cell plasma membrane containing zwitterionic and charged phospholipids, cholesterol and sphingolipids to study the dynamics of the integrin receptor and its effect on bilayer structure and dynamics. The results of this study demonstrate the dynamic nature of the integrin receptor and suggest that the presence of the integrin receptor alters the lipid organization between the two leaflets of the bilayer. In particular, our results suggest elevated density of cholesterol and of phosphatidylserine lipids around the integrin/talin complex and a slowing down of lipids in an annulus of ~30 Å around the protein due to interactions between the lipids and the integrin/talin F2-F3 complex. This may in part regulate the interactions of integrins with other related proteins or integrin clustering thus facilitating signal transduction across cell membranes.

  8. Messina: a novel analysis tool to identify biologically relevant molecules in disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark Pinese

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Morphologically similar cancers display heterogeneous patterns of molecular aberrations and follow substantially different clinical courses. This diversity has become the basis for the definition of molecular phenotypes, with significant implications for therapy. Microarray or proteomic expression profiling is conventionally employed to identify disease-associated genes, however, traditional approaches for the analysis of profiling experiments may miss molecular aberrations which define biologically relevant subtypes. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we present Messina, a method that can identify those genes that only sometimes show aberrant expression in cancer. We demonstrate with simulated data that Messina is highly sensitive and specific when used to identify genes which are aberrantly expressed in only a proportion of cancers, and compare Messina to contemporary analysis techniques. We illustrate Messina by using it to detect the aberrant expression of a gene that may play an important role in pancreatic cancer. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Messina allows the detection of genes with profiles typical of markers of molecular subtype, and complements existing methods to assist the identification of such markers. Messina is applicable to any global expression profiling data, and to allow its easy application has been packaged into a freely-available stand-alone software package.

  9. Monoclonal Antibodies Follow Distinct Aggregation Pathways During Production-Relevant Acidic Incubation and Neutralization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Thomas Skamris; Tian, Xinsheng; Thorolfsson, Matthias

    2016-01-01

    PURPOSE: Aggregation aspects of therapeutic monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) are of common concern to the pharmaceutical industry. Low pH treatment is applied during affinity purification and to inactivate endogenous retroviruses, directing interest to the mechanisms of acid-induced antibody aggregat......PURPOSE: Aggregation aspects of therapeutic monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) are of common concern to the pharmaceutical industry. Low pH treatment is applied during affinity purification and to inactivate endogenous retroviruses, directing interest to the mechanisms of acid-induced antibody...... identified, which may lead to two distinct pathways of reversible and irreversible aggregation, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: We conclude that subtle variations in mAb sequence greatly affect responses towards low-pH incubation and subsequent neutralization, and demonstrate how orthogonal biophysical methods...... distinguish between reversible and irreversible mAb aggregation pathways at early stages of acidic treatment....

  10. Deciphering the biological effects of acupuncture treatment modulating multiple metabolism pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Aihua; Yan, Guangli; Sun, Hui; Cheng, Weiping; Meng, Xiangcai; Liu, Li; Xie, Ning; Wang, Xijun

    2016-02-16

    Acupuncture is an alternative therapy that is widely used to treat various diseases. However, detailed biological interpretation of the acupuncture stimulations is limited. We here used metabolomics and proteomics technology, thereby identifying the serum small molecular metabolites into the effect and mechanism pathways of standardized acupuncture treatments at 'Zusanli' acupoint which was the most often used acupoint in previous reports. Comprehensive overview of serum metabolic profiles during acupuncture stimulation was investigated. Thirty-four differential metabolites were identified in serum metabolome and associated with ten metabolism pathways. Importantly, we have found that high impact glycerophospholipid metabolism, fatty acid metabolism, ether lipid metabolism were acutely perturbed by acupuncture stimulation. As such, these alterations may be useful to clarify the biological mechanism of acupuncture stimulation. A series of differentially expressed proteins were identified and such effects of acupuncture stimulation were found to play a role in transport, enzymatic activity, signaling pathway or receptor interaction. Pathway analysis further revealed that most of these proteins were found to play a pivotal role in the regulation of multiple metabolism pathways. It demonstrated that the metabolomics coupled with proteomics as a powerful approach for potential applications in understanding the biological effects of acupuncture stimulation.

  11. Relevance of DNA repair pathways on ascorbic acid effects on Echerichia Coli K-12 cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Slyus, M.A. van; Oliveira, R.L.B. da C.; Felzenszwalb, I.; Gomes, R.A.; Menck, C.F.

    1985-01-01

    Inactivation kinetics were performed with repair proficient and deficient Escherichia coli K-12 cells treated with oxidized solutions of ascorbic acid. The repair pathways controlled by the recA and uvrA gene products are essential for cell survival to the treatment. However, SOS chromotest result indicates that the SOS functions are only induced at high and toxic concentrations of the drug. Moreover, single strand breaks in DNA from treated cells are detected, demonstrating genome damage promoted by oxidized solutions of ascorbate. (M.A.C.) [pt

  12. Genetic associations at 53 loci highlight cell types and biological pathways relevant for kidney function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pattaro, Cristian; Teumer, Alexander; Gorski, Mathias; Chu, Audrey Y; Li, Man; Mijatovic, Vladan; Garnaas, Maija; Tin, Adrienne; Sorice, Rossella; Li, Yong; Taliun, Daniel; Olden, Matthias; Foster, Meredith; Yang, Qiong; Chen, Ming-Huei; Pers, Tune H; Johnson, Andrew D; Ko, Yi-An; Fuchsberger, Christian; Tayo, Bamidele; Nalls, Michael; Feitosa, Mary F; Isaacs, Aaron; Dehghan, Abbas; d'Adamo, Pio; Adeyemo, Adebowale; Dieffenbach, Aida Karina; Zonderman, Alan B; Nolte, Ilja M; van der Most, Peter J; Wright, Alan F; Shuldiner, Alan R; Morrison, Alanna C; Hofman, Albert; Smith, Albert V; Dreisbach, Albert W; Franke, Andre; Uitterlinden, Andre G; Metspalu, Andres; Tonjes, Anke; Lupo, Antonio; Robino, Antonietta; Johansson, Åsa; Demirkan, Ayse; Kollerits, Barbara; Freedman, Barry I; Ponte, Belen; Oostra, Ben A; Paulweber, Bernhard; Krämer, Bernhard K; Mitchell, Braxton D; Buckley, Brendan M; Peralta, Carmen A; Hayward, Caroline; Helmer, Catherine; Rotimi, Charles N; Shaffer, Christian M; Müller, Christian; Sala, Cinzia; van Duijn, Cornelia M; Saint-Pierre, Aude; Ackermann, Daniel; Shriner, Daniel; Ruggiero, Daniela; Toniolo, Daniela; Lu, Yingchang; Cusi, Daniele; Czamara, Darina; Ellinghaus, David; Siscovick, David S; Ruderfer, Douglas; Gieger, Christian; Grallert, Harald; Rochtchina, Elena; Atkinson, Elizabeth J; Holliday, Elizabeth G; Boerwinkle, Eric; Salvi, Erika; Bottinger, Erwin P; Murgia, Federico; Rivadeneira, Fernando; Ernst, Florian; Kronenberg, Florian; Hu, Frank B; Navis, Gerjan J; Curhan, Gary C; Ehret, George B; Homuth, Georg; Coassin, Stefan; Thun, Gian-Andri; Pistis, Giorgio; Gambaro, Giovanni; Malerba, Giovanni; Montgomery, Grant W; Eiriksdottir, Gudny; Jacobs, Gunnar; Li, Guo; Wichmann, H-Erich; Campbell, Harry; Schmidt, Helena; Wallaschofski, Henri; Völzke, Henry; Brenner, Hermann; Kroemer, Heyo K; Kramer, Holly; Lin, Honghuang; Leach, I Mateo; Ford, Ian; Guessous, Idris; Rudan, Igor; Prokopenko, Inga; Borecki, Ingrid; Heid, Iris M; Kolcic, Ivana; Persico, Ivana; Jukema, J Wouter; Wilson, James F; Felix, Janine F; Divers, Jasmin; Lambert, Jean-Charles; Stafford, Jeanette M; Gaspoz, Jean-Michel; Smith, Jennifer A; Faul, Jessica D; Wang, Jie Jin; Ding, Jingzhong; Hirschhorn, Joel N; Attia, John; Whitfield, John B; Chalmers, John; Viikari, Jorma; Coresh, Josef; Denny, Joshua C; Karjalainen, Juha; Fernandes, Jyotika K; Endlich, Karlhans; Butterbach, Katja; Keene, Keith L; Lohman, Kurt; Portas, Laura; Launer, Lenore J; Lyytikäinen, Leo-Pekka; Yengo, Loic; Franke, Lude; Ferrucci, Luigi; Rose, Lynda M; Kedenko, Lyudmyla; Rao, Madhumathi; Struchalin, Maksim; Kleber, Marcus E; Cavalieri, Margherita; Haun, Margot; Cornelis, Marilyn C; Ciullo, Marina; Pirastu, Mario; de Andrade, Mariza; McEvoy, Mark A; Woodward, Mark; Adam, Martin; Cocca, Massimiliano; Nauck, Matthias; Imboden, Medea; Waldenberger, Melanie; Pruijm, Menno; Metzger, Marie; Stumvoll, Michael; Evans, Michele K; Sale, Michele M; Kähönen, Mika; Boban, Mladen; Bochud, Murielle; Rheinberger, Myriam; Verweij, Niek; Bouatia-Naji, Nabila; Martin, Nicholas G; Hastie, Nick; Probst-Hensch, Nicole; Soranzo, Nicole; Devuyst, Olivier; Raitakari, Olli; Gottesman, Omri; Franco, Oscar H; Polasek, Ozren; Gasparini, Paolo; Munroe, Patricia B; Ridker, Paul M; Mitchell, Paul; Muntner, Paul; Meisinger, Christa; Smit, Johannes H; Kovacs, Peter; Wild, Philipp S; Froguel, Philippe; Rettig, Rainer; Mägi, Reedik; Biffar, Reiner; Schmidt, Reinhold; Middelberg, Rita P S; Carroll, Robert J; Penninx, Brenda W; Scott, Rodney J; Katz, Ronit; Sedaghat, Sanaz; Wild, Sarah H; Kardia, Sharon L R; Ulivi, Sheila; Hwang, Shih-Jen; Enroth, Stefan; Kloiber, Stefan; Trompet, Stella; Stengel, Benedicte; Hancock, Stephen J; Turner, Stephen T; Rosas, Sylvia E; Stracke, Sylvia; Harris, Tamara B; Zeller, Tanja; Zemunik, Tatijana; Lehtimäki, Terho; Illig, Thomas; Aspelund, Thor; Nikopensius, Tiit; Esko, Tonu; Tanaka, Toshiko; Gyllensten, Ulf; Völker, Uwe; Emilsson, Valur; Vitart, Veronique; Aalto, Ville; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Chouraki, Vincent; Chen, Wei-Min; Igl, Wilmar; März, Winfried; Koenig, Wolfgang; Lieb, Wolfgang; Loos, Ruth J F; Liu, Yongmei; Snieder, Harold; Pramstaller, Peter P; Parsa, Afshin; O'Connell, Jeffrey R; Susztak, Katalin; Hamet, Pavel; Tremblay, Johanne; de Boer, Ian H; Böger, Carsten A; Goessling, Wolfram; Chasman, Daniel I; Köttgen, Anna; Kao, W H Linda; Fox, Caroline S; van der Schouw, YT; Bots, Michael L; Grobbee, Diederick E; Moret, N. Charlotte

    2016-01-01

    Reduced glomerular filtration rate defines chronic kidney disease and is associated with cardiovascular and all-cause mortality. We conducted a meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies for estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), combining data across 133,413 individuals with replication

  13. Extraintestinal manifestations and complications in inflammatory bowel disease: from shared genetics to shared biological pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Sommeren, Suzanne; Janse, Marcel; Karjalainen, Juha; Fehrmann, Rudolf; Franke, Lude; Fu, Jingyuan; Weersma, Rinse K

    2014-06-01

    The clinical presentation of the inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) is extremely heterogenous and is characterized by various extraintestinal manifestations and complications (EIM). Increasing genetic insight for IBD and EIM shows multiple shared susceptibility loci. We hypothesize that, next to these overlapping genetic risk loci, distinct disease pathways are shared between IBD and EIM. The overlapping genetic risk loci for IBD and its EIM were searched in literature. We assessed shared disease pathways by performing an extensive pathway analysis by protein-protein interaction and cotranscriptional analysis, using both publicly available and newly developed databases. Reliable genetic data were available for primary sclerosing cholangitis, ankylosing spondylitis, decreased bone mineral density, colorectal carcinoma, gallstones, kidney stones, and deep venous thrombosis. We found an extensive overlap in genetic risk loci, especially for IBD and primary sclerosing cholangitis and ankylosing spondylitis. We identified 370 protein-protein interactions, of which 108 are statistically specific. We identified 446 statistically specific cotranscribed gene pairs. The interactions are shown to cluster in specific biological pathways. We show that the pathogenetic overlap between IBD and its EIM extends beyond shared risk genes to distinctive shared biological pathways. We define genetic background as a risk factor for IBD-EIM alongside known mechanisms such as malabsorption and medication. Clustering patients based on distinctive pathways may enable stratification of patients to predict development of EIM.

  14. Clinically relevant characterization of lung adenocarcinoma subtypes based on cellular pathways: an international validation study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher M Bryant

    Full Text Available Lung adenocarcinoma (AD represents a predominant type of lung cancer demonstrating significant morphologic and molecular heterogeneity. We sought to understand this heterogeneity by utilizing gene expression analyses of 432 AD samples and examining associations between 27 known cancer-related pathways and the AD subtype, clinical characteristics and patient survival. Unsupervised clustering of AD and gene expression enrichment analysis reveals that cell proliferation is the most important pathway separating tumors into subgroups. Further, AD with increased cell proliferation demonstrate significantly poorer outcome and an increased solid AD subtype component. Additionally, we find that tumors with any solid component have decreased survival as compared to tumors without a solid component. These results lead to the potential to use a relatively simple pathological examination of a tumor in order to determine its aggressiveness and the patient's prognosis. Additional results suggest the ability to use a similar approach to determine a patient's sensitivity to targeted treatment. We then demonstrated the consistency of these findings using two independent AD cohorts from Asia (N = 87 and Europe (N = 89 using the identical analytic procedures.

  15. Escher: A Web Application for Building, Sharing, and Embedding Data-Rich Visualizations of Biological Pathways

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    King, Zachary A.; Draeger, Andreas; Ebrahim, Ali

    2015-01-01

    Escher is a web application for visualizing data on biological pathways. Three key features make Escher a uniquely effective tool for pathway visualization. First, users can rapidly design new pathway maps. Escher provides pathway suggestions based on user data and genome-scale models, so users can......IP)-in conjunction with metabolite-and reaction-oriented data types (e.g. metabolomics, fluxomics). Third, Escher harnesses the strengths of web technologies (SVG, D3, developer tools) so that visualizations can be rapidly adapted, extended, shared, and embedded. This paper provides examples of each...... of these features and explains how the development approach used for Escher can be used to guide the development of future visualization tools....

  16. A model invalidation-based approach for elucidating biological signalling pathways, applied to the chemotaxis pathway in R. sphaeroides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Mark A J; August, Elias; Hamadeh, Abdullah; Maini, Philip K; McSharry, Patrick E; Armitage, Judith P; Papachristodoulou, Antonis

    2009-10-31

    Developing methods for understanding the connectivity of signalling pathways is a major challenge in biological research. For this purpose, mathematical models are routinely developed based on experimental observations, which also allow the prediction of the system behaviour under different experimental conditions. Often, however, the same experimental data can be represented by several competing network models. In this paper, we developed a novel mathematical model/experiment design cycle to help determine the probable network connectivity by iteratively invalidating models corresponding to competing signalling pathways. To do this, we systematically design experiments in silico that discriminate best between models of the competing signalling pathways. The method determines the inputs and parameter perturbations that will differentiate best between model outputs, corresponding to what can be measured/observed experimentally. We applied our method to the unknown connectivities in the chemotaxis pathway of the bacterium Rhodobacter sphaeroides. We first developed several models of R. sphaeroides chemotaxis corresponding to different signalling networks, all of which are biologically plausible. Parameters in these models were fitted so that they all represented wild type data equally well. The models were then compared to current mutant data and some were invalidated. To discriminate between the remaining models we used ideas from control systems theory to determine efficiently in silico an input profile that would result in the biggest difference in model outputs. However, when we applied this input to the models, we found it to be insufficient for discrimination in silico. Thus, to achieve better discrimination, we determined the best change in initial conditions (total protein concentrations) as well as the best change in the input profile. The designed experiments were then performed on live cells and the resulting data used to invalidate all but one of the

  17. A model invalidation-based approach for elucidating biological signalling pathways, applied to the chemotaxis pathway in R. sphaeroides

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamadeh Abdullah

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Developing methods for understanding the connectivity of signalling pathways is a major challenge in biological research. For this purpose, mathematical models are routinely developed based on experimental observations, which also allow the prediction of the system behaviour under different experimental conditions. Often, however, the same experimental data can be represented by several competing network models. Results In this paper, we developed a novel mathematical model/experiment design cycle to help determine the probable network connectivity by iteratively invalidating models corresponding to competing signalling pathways. To do this, we systematically design experiments in silico that discriminate best between models of the competing signalling pathways. The method determines the inputs and parameter perturbations that will differentiate best between model outputs, corresponding to what can be measured/observed experimentally. We applied our method to the unknown connectivities in the chemotaxis pathway of the bacterium Rhodobacter sphaeroides. We first developed several models of R. sphaeroides chemotaxis corresponding to different signalling networks, all of which are biologically plausible. Parameters in these models were fitted so that they all represented wild type data equally well. The models were then compared to current mutant data and some were invalidated. To discriminate between the remaining models we used ideas from control systems theory to determine efficiently in silico an input profile that would result in the biggest difference in model outputs. However, when we applied this input to the models, we found it to be insufficient for discrimination in silico. Thus, to achieve better discrimination, we determined the best change in initial conditions (total protein concentrations as well as the best change in the input profile. The designed experiments were then performed on live cells and the resulting

  18. Study about the relevance and the disclosure of biological assets of listed companies in BM&FBOVESPA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciana Holtz

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The main objective this article is to verify that the information content of biological assets disclosed in the financial statements are relevant and, the secondary objective perform content analysis of the notes verifying the compliance of information supplied by entities with CPC 29. The study sample was composed of publicly traded stock companies listed on the BM & FBOVESPA with data for the year 2010 and 2011. The empirical tests were conducted applying relevance models, using observations of 347 active companies characterizing a study model pooled ordinary least squares – POLS, including companies that have reported biological assets into account specific .The companies that had values of biological assets posted have had analyzed explanatory notes referring to this account. The results provide empirical evidence that the information content of biological assets disclosed by companies is not relevant to the sample. In relation the content analysis of the notes was checked a partial compliance of the standard, there is a disparity in the information disclosure practices by the companies analyzed, as well as an omission of items required by the standard. Can be inferred that loss of the relevance has occurred, in part, by the poor quality of the notes, which may make it difficult for outside users in interpreting the information disclosed.

  19. Development of computationally predicted Adverse Outcome Pathway (AOP) networks through data mining and integration of publicly available in vivo, in vitro, phenotype, and biological pathway data

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Adverse Outcome Pathway (AOP) framework is increasingly being adopted as a tool for organizing and summarizing the mechanistic information connecting molecular perturbations by environmental stressors with adverse outcomes relevant for ecological and human health outcomes. Ho...

  20. The Creation and Physiological Relevance of Divergent Hydroxylation Patterns in the Flavonoid Pathway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heidi Halbwirth

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Flavonoids and biochemically-related chalcones are important secondary metabolites, which are ubiquitously present in plants and therefore also in human food. They fulfill a broad range of physiological functions in planta and there are numerous reports about their physiological relevance for humans. Flavonoids have in common a basic C6-C3-C6 skeleton structure consisting of two aromatic rings (A and B and a heterocyclic ring (C containing one oxygen atom, whereas chalcones, as the intermediates in the formation of flavonoids, have not yet established the heterocyclic C-ring. Flavonoids are grouped into eight different classes, according to the oxidative status of the C-ring. The large number of divergent chalcones and flavonoid structures is from the extensive modification of the basic molecules. The hydroxylation pattern influences physiological properties such as light absorption and antioxidative activity, which is the base for many beneficial health effects of flavonoids. In some cases antiinfective properties are also effected.

  1. Ventral aspect of the visual form pathway is not critical for the perception of biological motion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilaie-Dotan, Sharon; Saygin, Ayse Pinar; Lorenzi, Lauren J.; Rees, Geraint; Behrmann, Marlene

    2015-01-01

    Identifying the movements of those around us is fundamental for many daily activities, such as recognizing actions, detecting predators, and interacting with others socially. A key question concerns the neurobiological substrates underlying biological motion perception. Although the ventral “form” visual cortex is standardly activated by biologically moving stimuli, whether these activations are functionally critical for biological motion perception or are epiphenomenal remains unknown. To address this question, we examined whether focal damage to regions of the ventral visual cortex, resulting in significant deficits in form perception, adversely affects biological motion perception. Six patients with damage to the ventral cortex were tested with sensitive point-light display paradigms. All patients were able to recognize unmasked point-light displays and their perceptual thresholds were not significantly different from those of three different control groups, one of which comprised brain-damaged patients with spared ventral cortex (n > 50). Importantly, these six patients performed significantly better than patients with damage to regions critical for biological motion perception. To assess the necessary contribution of different regions in the ventral pathway to biological motion perception, we complement the behavioral findings with a fine-grained comparison between the lesion location and extent, and the cortical regions standardly implicated in biological motion processing. This analysis revealed that the ventral aspects of the form pathway (e.g., fusiform regions, ventral extrastriate body area) are not critical for biological motion perception. We hypothesize that the role of these ventral regions is to provide enhanced multiview/posture representations of the moving person rather than to represent biological motion perception per se. PMID:25583504

  2. Identification of a novel signaling pathway and its relevance for GluA1 recycling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guiscard Seebohm

    Full Text Available We previously showed that the serum- and glucocorticoid-inducible kinase 3 (SGK3 increases the AMPA-type glutamate receptor GluA1 protein in the plasma membrane. The activation of AMPA receptors by NMDA-type glutamate receptors eventually leads to postsynaptic neuronal plasticity. Here, we show that SGK3 mRNA is upregulated in the hippocampus of new-born wild type Wistar rats after NMDA receptor activation. We further demonstrate in the Xenopus oocyte expression system that delivery of GluA1 protein to the plasma membrane depends on the small GTPase RAB11. This RAB-dependent GluA1 trafficking requires phosphorylation and activation of phosphoinositol-3-phosphate-5-kinase (PIKfyve and the generation of PI(3,5P(2. In line with this mechanism we could show PIKfyve mRNA expression in the hippocampus of wild type C57/BL6 mice and phosphorylation of PIKfyve by SGK3. Incubation of hippocampal slices with the PIKfyve inhibitor YM201636 revealed reduced CA1 basal synaptic activity. Furthermore, treatment of primary hippocampal neurons with YM201636 altered the GluA1 expression pattern towards reduced synaptic expression of GluA1. Our findings demonstrate for the first time an involvement of PIKfyve and PI(3,5P(2 in NMDA receptor-triggered synaptic GluA1 trafficking. This new regulatory pathway of GluA1 may contribute to synaptic plasticity and memory.

  3. Contextual Hub Analysis Tool (CHAT: A Cytoscape app for identifying contextually relevant hubs in biological networks [version 2; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanja Muetze

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Highly connected nodes (hubs in biological networks are topologically important to the structure of the network and have also been shown to be preferentially associated with a range of phenotypes of interest. The relative importance of a hub node, however, can change depending on the biological context. Here, we report a Cytoscape app, the Contextual Hub Analysis Tool (CHAT, which enables users to easily construct and visualize a network of interactions from a gene or protein list of interest, integrate contextual information, such as gene expression or mass spectrometry data, and identify hub nodes that are more highly connected to contextual nodes (e.g. genes or proteins that are differentially expressed than expected by chance. In a case study, we use CHAT to construct a network of genes that are differentially expressed in Dengue fever, a viral infection. CHAT was used to identify and compare contextual and degree-based hubs in this network. The top 20 degree-based hubs were enriched in pathways related to the cell cycle and cancer, which is likely due to the fact that proteins involved in these processes tend to be highly connected in general. In comparison, the top 20 contextual hubs were enriched in pathways commonly observed in a viral infection including pathways related to the immune response to viral infection. This analysis shows that such contextual hubs are considerably more biologically relevant than degree-based hubs and that analyses which rely on the identification of hubs solely based on their connectivity may be biased towards nodes that are highly connected in general rather than in the specific context of interest.   Availability: CHAT is available for Cytoscape 3.0+ and can be installed via the Cytoscape App Store (http://apps.cytoscape.org/apps/chat.

  4. Self-Relevance Constructions of Biology Concepts: Meaning-Making and Identity-Formation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidson, Yonaton Sahar

    2018-01-01

    Recent research supports the benefit of students' construction of relevance through writing about the connection of content to their life. However, most such research defines relevance narrowly as utility value--perceived instrumentality of the content to the student's career goals. Furthermore, the scope of phenomenological and conceptual…

  5. Basics and principles of particle image velocimetry (PIV) for mapping biogenic and biologically relevant flows

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stamhuis, Eize J.

    2006-01-01

    Particle image velocimetry (PIV) has proven to be a very useful technique in mapping animal-generated flows or flow patterns relevant to biota. Here, theoretical background is provided and experimental details of 2-dimensional digital PIV are explained for mapping flow produced by or relevant to

  6. Serotonin-related pathways and developmental plasticity: relevance for psychiatric disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dayer, Alexandre

    2014-01-01

    Risk for adult psychiatric disorders is partially determined by early-life alterations occurring during neural circuit formation and maturation. In this perspective, recent data show that the serotonin system regulates key cellular processes involved in the construction of cortical circuits. Translational data for rodents indicate that early-life serotonin dysregulation leads to a wide range of behavioral alterations, ranging from stress-related phenotypes to social deficits. Studies in humans have revealed that serotonin-related genetic variants interact with early-life stress to regulate stress-induced cortisol responsiveness and activate the neural circuits involved in mood and anxiety disorders. Emerging data demonstrate that early-life adversity induces epigenetic modifications in serotonin-related genes. Finally, recent findings reveal that selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors can reinstate juvenile-like forms of neural plasticity, thus allowing the erasure of long-lasting fear memories. These approaches are providing new insights on the biological mechanisms and clinical application of antidepressants. PMID:24733969

  7. "Evo in the News:" Understanding Evolution and Students' Attitudes toward the Relevance of Evolutionary Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Infanti, Lynn M.; Wiles, Jason R.

    2014-01-01

    This investigation evaluated the effects of exposure to the "Evo in the News" section of the "Understanding Evolution" website on students' attitudes toward biological evolution in undergraduates in a mixed-majors introductory biology course at Syracuse University. Students' attitudes toward evolution and changes therein were…

  8. Synthesis and Demonstration of the Biological Relevance of sp3-rich Scaffolds Distantly Related to Natural Product Frameworks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foley, Daniel J; Craven, Philip G E; Collins, Patrick M; Doveston, Richard G; Aimon, Anthony; Talon, Romain; Churcher, Ian; von Delft, Frank; Marsden, Stephen P; Nelson, Adam

    2017-10-26

    The productive exploration of chemical space is an enduring challenge in chemical biology and medicinal chemistry. Natural products are biologically relevant, and their frameworks have facilitated chemical tool and drug discovery. A "top-down" synthetic approach is described that enabled a range of complex bridged intermediates to be converted with high step efficiency into 26 diverse sp 3 -rich scaffolds. The scaffolds have local natural product-like features, but are only distantly related to specific natural product frameworks. To assess biological relevance, a set of 52 fragments was prepared, and screened by high-throughput crystallography against three targets from two protein families (ATAD2, BRD1 and JMJD2D). In each case, 3D fragment hits were identified that would serve as distinctive starting points for ligand discovery. This demonstrates that frameworks that are distantly related to natural products can facilitate discovery of new biologically relevant regions within chemical space. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  9. CLIC, a tool for expanding biological pathways based on co-expression across thousands of datasets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yang; Liu, Jun S.; Mootha, Vamsi K.

    2017-01-01

    In recent years, there has been a huge rise in the number of publicly available transcriptional profiling datasets. These massive compendia comprise billions of measurements and provide a special opportunity to predict the function of unstudied genes based on co-expression to well-studied pathways. Such analyses can be very challenging, however, since biological pathways are modular and may exhibit co-expression only in specific contexts. To overcome these challenges we introduce CLIC, CLustering by Inferred Co-expression. CLIC accepts as input a pathway consisting of two or more genes. It then uses a Bayesian partition model to simultaneously partition the input gene set into coherent co-expressed modules (CEMs), while assigning the posterior probability for each dataset in support of each CEM. CLIC then expands each CEM by scanning the transcriptome for additional co-expressed genes, quantified by an integrated log-likelihood ratio (LLR) score weighted for each dataset. As a byproduct, CLIC automatically learns the conditions (datasets) within which a CEM is operative. We implemented CLIC using a compendium of 1774 mouse microarray datasets (28628 microarrays) or 1887 human microarray datasets (45158 microarrays). CLIC analysis reveals that of 910 canonical biological pathways, 30% consist of strongly co-expressed gene modules for which new members are predicted. For example, CLIC predicts a functional connection between protein C7orf55 (FMC1) and the mitochondrial ATP synthase complex that we have experimentally validated. CLIC is freely available at www.gene-clic.org. We anticipate that CLIC will be valuable both for revealing new components of biological pathways as well as the conditions in which they are active. PMID:28719601

  10. CLIC, a tool for expanding biological pathways based on co-expression across thousands of datasets.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Li

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available In recent years, there has been a huge rise in the number of publicly available transcriptional profiling datasets. These massive compendia comprise billions of measurements and provide a special opportunity to predict the function of unstudied genes based on co-expression to well-studied pathways. Such analyses can be very challenging, however, since biological pathways are modular and may exhibit co-expression only in specific contexts. To overcome these challenges we introduce CLIC, CLustering by Inferred Co-expression. CLIC accepts as input a pathway consisting of two or more genes. It then uses a Bayesian partition model to simultaneously partition the input gene set into coherent co-expressed modules (CEMs, while assigning the posterior probability for each dataset in support of each CEM. CLIC then expands each CEM by scanning the transcriptome for additional co-expressed genes, quantified by an integrated log-likelihood ratio (LLR score weighted for each dataset. As a byproduct, CLIC automatically learns the conditions (datasets within which a CEM is operative. We implemented CLIC using a compendium of 1774 mouse microarray datasets (28628 microarrays or 1887 human microarray datasets (45158 microarrays. CLIC analysis reveals that of 910 canonical biological pathways, 30% consist of strongly co-expressed gene modules for which new members are predicted. For example, CLIC predicts a functional connection between protein C7orf55 (FMC1 and the mitochondrial ATP synthase complex that we have experimentally validated. CLIC is freely available at www.gene-clic.org. We anticipate that CLIC will be valuable both for revealing new components of biological pathways as well as the conditions in which they are active.

  11. Identifying biological pathways in the MRI findings of people with low back pain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Rikke Krüger; Jensen, Tue Secher; Kjaer, Per

    on intervertebral disc height and signal intensity, disc protrusions, high intensity zones, size and type of vertebral endplate signal changes, vertebral endplate irregularities and defects, osteophytes, and spondylolisthesis. Latent class analysis (probabilistic data mining) was used to distinguish the best...... into a model of five different biological pathways of degeneration. Future research will test the association between these clusters and clinically important characteristics such as pain and activity limitation....

  12. Synergy and interactions among biological pathways leading to preterm premature rupture of membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lannon, Sophia M R; Vanderhoeven, Jeroen P; Eschenbach, David A; Gravett, Michael G; Adams Waldorf, Kristina M

    2014-10-01

    Preterm premature rupture of membranes (PPROM) occurs in 1% to 2% of births. Impact of PPROM is greatest in low- and middle-income countries where prematurity-related deaths are most common. Recent investigations identify cytokine and matrix metalloproteinase activation, oxidative stress, and apoptosis as primary pathways to PPROM. These biological processes are initiated by heterogeneous etiologies including infection/inflammation, placental bleeding, uterine overdistention, and genetic polymorphisms. We hypothesize that pathways to PPROM overlap and act synergistically to weaken membranes. We focus our discussion on membrane composition and strength, pathways linking risk factors to membrane weakening, and future research directions to reduce the global burden of PPROM. © The Author(s) 2014.

  13. The Fortymile caribou herd: novel proposed management and relevant biology, 1992-1997

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodney D. Boertje

    2000-04-01

    Full Text Available A diverse, international Fortymile Planning Team wrote a novel Fortymile caribou herd {Rangifer tarandus granti Management Plan in 1995 (Boertje & Gardner, 1996: 56-77. The primary goal of this plan is to begin restoring the Fortymile herd to its former range; >70% of the herd's former range was abandoned as herd size declined. Specific objectives call for increasing the Fortymile herd by at least 5-10% annually from 1998-2002. We describe demographics of the herd, factors limiting the herd, and condition of the herd and range during 1992-1997. These data were useful in proposing management actions for the herd and should be instrumental in future evaluations of the plan's actions. The following points summarize herd biology relevant to management proposed by the Fortymile Planning Team: 1. Herd numbers remained relatively stable during 1990-1995 (about 22 000-23 000 caribou. On 21 June 1996 we counted about 900 additional caribou in the herd, probably a result of increased pregnancy rates in 1996. On 26 June 1997 we counted about 2500 additional caribou in the herd, probably a result of recruitment of the abundant 1996 calves and excellent early survival of the 1997 calves. The Team deemed that implementing management actions during a period of natural growth would be opportune. 2. Wolf (Canis lupus and grizzly bear (Ursus arctos predation were the most important sources of mortality, despite over a decade of the most liberal regulations in the state for harvesting of wolves and grizzly bears. Wolves were the most important predator. Wolves killed between 2000 and 3000 caribou calves annually during this study and between 1000 and 2300 older caribou; 1200-1900 calves were killed from May through September. No significant differences in annual wolf predation rates on calves or adults were observed between 1994 and early winter 1997. Reducing wolf predation was judged by the Team to be the most manageable way to help hasten or stimulate

  14. Enhanced surface functionality via plasma modification and plasma deposition techniques to create more biologically relevant materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shearer, Jeffrey C.

    Functionalizing nanoparticles and other unusually shaped substrates to create more biologically relevant materials has become central to a wide range of research programs. One of the primary challenges in this field is creating highly functionalized surfaces without modifying the underlying bulk material. Traditional wet chemistry techniques utilize thin film depositions to functionalize nanomaterials with oxygen and nitrogen containing functional groups, such as --OH and --NHx. These functional groups can serve to create surfaces that are amenable to cell adhesion or can act as reactive groups for further attachment of larger structures, such as macromolecules or antiviral agents. Additional layers, such as SiO2, are often added between the nanomaterial and the functionalized coating to act as a barrier films, adhesion layers, and to increase overall hydrophilicity. However, some wet chemistry techniques can damage the bulk material during processing. This dissertation examines the use of plasma processing as an alternative method for producing these highly functionalized surfaces on nanoparticles and polymeric scaffolds through the use of plasma modification and plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition techniques. Specifically, this dissertation will focus on (1) plasma deposition of SiO2 barrier films on nanoparticle substrates; (2) surface functionalization of amine and alcohol groups through (a) plasma co-polymerization and (b) plasma modification; and (3) the design and construction of plasma hardware to facilitate plasma processing of nanoparticles and polymeric scaffolds. The body of work presented herein first examines the fabrication of composite nanoparticles by plasma processing. SiOxC y and hexylamine films were coated onto TiO2 nanoparticles to demonstrate enhanced water dispersion properties. Continuous wave and pulsed allyl alcohol plasmas were used to produce highly functionalized Fe2 O3 supported nanoparticles. Specifically, film composition was

  15. Identification of key processes underlying cancer phenotypes using biologic pathway analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sol Efroni

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Cancer is recognized to be a family of gene-based diseases whose causes are to be found in disruptions of basic biologic processes. An increasingly deep catalogue of canonical networks details the specific molecular interaction of genes and their products. However, mapping of disease phenotypes to alterations of these networks of interactions is accomplished indirectly and non-systematically. Here we objectively identify pathways associated with malignancy, staging, and outcome in cancer through application of an analytic approach that systematically evaluates differences in the activity and consistency of interactions within canonical biologic processes. Using large collections of publicly accessible genome-wide gene expression, we identify small, common sets of pathways - Trka Receptor, Apoptosis response to DNA Damage, Ceramide, Telomerase, CD40L and Calcineurin - whose differences robustly distinguish diverse tumor types from corresponding normal samples, predict tumor grade, and distinguish phenotypes such as estrogen receptor status and p53 mutation state. Pathways identified through this analysis perform as well or better than phenotypes used in the original studies in predicting cancer outcome. This approach provides a means to use genome-wide characterizations to map key biological processes to important clinical features in disease.

  16. Mapping the patent landscape of synthetic biology for fine chemical production pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carbonell, Pablo; Gök, Abdullah; Shapira, Philip; Faulon, Jean-Loup

    2016-09-01

    A goal of synthetic biology bio-foundries is to innovate through an iterative design/build/test/learn pipeline. In assessing the value of new chemical production routes, the intellectual property (IP) novelty of the pathway is important. Exploratory studies can be carried using knowledge of the patent/IP landscape for synthetic biology and metabolic engineering. In this paper, we perform an assessment of pathways as potential targets for chemical production across the full catalogue of reachable chemicals in the extended metabolic space of chassis organisms, as computed by the retrosynthesis-based algorithm RetroPath. Our database for reactions processed by sequences in heterologous pathways was screened against the PatSeq database, a comprehensive collection of more than 150M sequences present in patent grants and applications. We also examine related patent families using Derwent Innovations. This large-scale computational study provides useful insights into the IP landscape of synthetic biology for fine and specialty chemicals production. © 2016 The Authors. Microbial Biotechnology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd and Society for Applied Microbiology.

  17. Modeling the photochemical transformation of nitrobenzene under conditions relevant to sunlit surface waters: Reaction pathways and formation of intermediates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vione, Davide; De Laurentiis, Elisa; Berto, Silvia; Minero, Claudio; Hatipoglu, Arzu; Cinar, Zekiye

    2016-02-01

    Nitrobenzene (NB) would undergo photodegradation in sunlit surface waters, mainly by direct photolysis and triplet-sensitized oxidation, with a secondary role of the *OH reaction. Its photochemical half-life time would range from a few days to a couple of months under fair-weather summertime irradiation, depending on water chemistry and depth. NB phototransformation gives phenol and the three nitrophenol isomers, in different yields depending on the considered pathway. The minor *OH role in degradation would make NB unsuitable as *OH probe in irradiated natural water samples, but the selectivity towards *OH could be increased by monitoring the formation of phenol from NB+*OH. The relevant reaction would proceed through ipso-addition of *OH on the carbon atom bearing the nitro-group, forming a pre-reactive complex that would evolve into a transition state (and then into a radical addition intermediate) with very low activation energy barrier. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Formation of biologically relevant carboxylic acids during the gamma irradiation of acetic acid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Negron-Mendoza, A.; Ponnamperuma, C.

    1976-01-01

    Irradiation of aqueous solutions of acetic acid with gamma rays produced several carboxylic acids in small yield. Their identification was based on the technique of gas chromatography combined with mass spectrometry. Some of these acids are Krebs Cycle intermediates. Their simultaneous formation in experiments simulating the primitive conditions on the earth suggests that metabolic pathways may have had their origin in prebiotic chemical processes.

  19. New suggestive genetic loci and biological pathways for attention function in adult attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alemany, Silvia; Ribasés, Marta; Vilor-Tejedor, Natàlia; Bustamante, Mariona; Sánchez-Mora, Cristina; Bosch, Rosa; Richarte, Vanesa; Cormand, Bru; Casas, Miguel; Ramos-Quiroga, Josep A; Sunyer, Jordi

    2015-09-01

    Attention deficit is one of the core symptoms of the attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). However, the specific genetic variants that may be associated with attention function in adult ADHD remain largely unknown. The present study aimed to identifying SNPs associated with attention function in adult ADHD and tested whether these associations were enriched for specific biological pathways. Commissions, hit-reaction time (HRT), the standard error of HRT (HRTSE), and intraindividual coefficient variability (ICV) of the Conners Continuous Performance Test (CPT-II) were assessed in 479 unmedicated adult ADHD individuals. A Genome-Wide Association Study (GWAS) was conducted for each outcome and, subsequently, gene set enrichment analyses were performed. Although no SNPs reached genome-wide significance (P association with the CPT outcomes (P associated SNP was located in the SORCS2 gene (P = 3.65E-07), previously associated with bipolar disorder (BP), Alzheimer disease (AD), and brain structure in elderly individuals. We detected other genes suggested to be involved in synaptic plasticity, cognitive function, neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders, and smoking behavior such as NUAK1, FGF20, NETO1, BTBD9, DLG2, TOP3B, and CHRNB4. Also, several of the pathways nominally associated with the CPT outcomes are relevant for ADHD such as the ubiquitin proteasome, neurodegenerative disorders, axon guidance, and AD amyloid secretase pathways. To our knowledge, this is the first GWAS and pathway analysis of attention function in patients with persistent ADHD. Overall, our findings reinforce the conceptualization of attention function as a potential endophenotype for studying the molecular basis of adult ADHD. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. Teleology then and now: the question of Kant's relevance for contemporary controversies over function in biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zammito, John

    2006-12-01

    'Naturalism' is the aspiration of contemporary philosophy of biology, and Kant simply cannot be refashioned into a naturalist. Instead, epistemological 'deflation' was the decisive feature of Kant's treatment of the 'biomedical' science in his day, so it is not surprising that this might attract some philosophers of science to him today. A certain sense of impasse in the contemporary 'function talk' seems to motivate renewed interest in Kant. Kant--drawing on his eighteenth-century predecessors-provided a discerning and powerful characterization of what biologists had to explain in organic form. His difference from the rest is that he opined that it was impossible to explain it. Its 'inscrutability' was intrinsic. The third Critique essentially proposed the reduction of biology to a kind of pre-scientific descriptivism, doomed never to attain authentic scientificity, to have its 'Newton of the blade of grass'. By contrast, for Locke, and a fortiori for Buffon and his followers, 'intrinsic purposiveness' was a fact of the matter about concrete biological phenomena; the features of internal self-regulation were hypotheses arising out of actual research practice. The difference comes most vividly to light once we recognize Kant's distinction of the concept of organism from the concept of life. If biology must conceptualize self-organization as actual in the world, Kant's regulative/constitutive distinction is pointless in practice and the (naturalist) philosophy of biology has urgent work to undertake for which Kant turns out not to be very helpful.

  1. Membrane Domains and Their Relevance to the Organization of Biological Membranes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bagatolli, Luis

    2012-01-01

    approaches. Thus, a section containing a historical perspective of lipid domains has been added as an introduction, recapitulating how lipid domains came into view and discussing how this phenomenon influenced different models of biological membranes. General but important aspects of the physical basis...... approaches. This includes a section on experimental results showing correlations between simple lipid mixtures and some specialized natural membranous systems. The chapter ends by discussing the pros and cons of current biological membrane models considering membrane domains, and tackles new challenges...... and future perspectives on membrane-related studies. This last section includes a critical discussion about the appropriateness of connecting phenomena observed in model membrane systems with their natural counterpart – that is, biological membranes....

  2. Doses due to tritium releases by NET - data base and relevant parameters on biological tritium behaviour

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Diabate, S.; Strack, S.

    1990-12-01

    This study gives an overview on the current knowledge about the behaviour of tritium in plants and in food chains in order to evaluate the ingestion pathway modelling of existing computer codes for dose estimations. The tritium uptake and retention by plants standing at the beginning of the food chains is described. The different chemical forms of tritium, which may be released into the atmosphere (HT, HTO and tritiated organics), and incorporation of tritium into organic material of plants are considered. Uptake and metabolism of tritiated compounds in animals and man are reviewed with particular respect to organically bound tritium and its significance for dose estimations. Some basic remarks on tritium toxicity are also included. Furthermore, a choice of computer codes for dose estimations due to chronic or accidental tritium releases has been compared with respect to the ingestion pathway. (orig.) [de

  3. Genomics and systems biology - How relevant are the developments to veterinary pharmacology, toxicology and therapeutics?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Witkamp, R.F.

    2005-01-01

    This review discusses some of the recent developments in genomics and its current and future relevance for veterinary pharmacology and toxicology. With the rapid progress made in this field several new approaches in pharmacological and toxicological research have developed and drug discovery and

  4. Developing an easy-to-apply model for identifying relevant pathogen pathways into surface waters used for recreational purposes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tondera, Katharina; Klaer, Kassandra; Roder, Silke; Brueckner, Ira; Strathmann, Martin; Kistemann, Thomas; Schreiber, Christiane; Pinnekamp, Johannes

    2016-10-01

    Swimming in inner-city surface waters is popular in the warm season, but can have negative consequences such as gastro-intestinal, ear and skin infections. The pathogens causing these infections commonly enter surface waters via several point source discharges such as the effluents from wastewater treatment plants and sewer overflows, as well as through diffuse non-point sources such as surface runoff. Nonetheless, the recreational use of surface waters is attractive for residents. In order to save financial and organizational resources, local authorities need to estimate the most relevant pathways of pathogens into surface waters. In particular, when detailed data on a local scale are missing, this is quite difficult to achieve. For this reason, we have developed an easy-to-apply model using the example of Escherichia coli and intestinal enterococci as a first approach to the local situation, where missing data can be replaced by data from literature. The model was developed based on a case study of a river arm monitored in western Germany and will be generalized for future applications. Although the limits of the EU Bathing Water Directive are already fulfilled during dry weather days, we showed that the effluent of wastewater treatment plants and overland flow had the most relevant impact on the microbial surface water quality. On rainy weather days, combined sewer overflows are responsible for the highest microbial pollution loads. The results obtained in this study can help decision makers to focus on reducing the relevant pathogen sources within a catchment area. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  5. Obesity and psychiatric disorders: commonalities in dysregulated biological pathways and their implications for treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopresti, Adrian L; Drummond, Peter D

    2013-08-01

    Rates of obesity are higher than normal across a range of psychiatric disorders, including major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and anxiety disorders. While the problem of obesity is generally acknowledged in mental health research and treatment, an understanding of their bi-directional relationship is still developing. In this review the association between obesity and psychiatric disorders is summarised, with a specific emphasis on similarities in their disturbed biological pathways; namely neurotransmitter imbalances, hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis disturbances, dysregulated inflammatory pathways, increased oxidative and nitrosative stress, mitochondrial disturbances, and neuroprogression. The applicability and effectiveness of weight-loss interventions in psychiatric populations are reviewed along with their potential efficacy in ameliorating disturbed biological pathways, particularly those mediating inflammation and oxidative stress. It is proposed that weight loss may not only be an effective intervention to enhance physical health but may also improve mental health outcomes and slow the rate of neuroprogressive disturbances in psychiatric disorders. Areas of future research to help expand our understanding of the relationship between obesity and psychiatric disorders are also outlined. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Demographic history and biologically relevant genetic variation of Native Mexicans inferred from whole-genome sequencing

    OpenAIRE

    Romero-Hidalgo, Sandra; Ochoa-Leyva, Adrián; Garcíarrubio, Alejandro; Acuña-Alonzo, Victor; Antúnez-Argüelles, Erika; Balcazar-Quintero, Martha; Barquera-Lozano, Rodrigo; Carnevale, Alessandra; Cornejo-Granados, Fernanda; Fernández-López, Juan Carlos; García-Herrera, Rodrigo; García-Ortíz, Humberto; Granados-Silvestre, Ángeles; Granados, Julio; Guerrero-Romero, Fernando

    2017-01-01

    Understanding the genetic structure of Native American populations is important to clarify their diversity, demographic history, and to identify genetic factors relevant for biomedical traits. Here, we show a demographic history reconstruction from 12 Native American whole genomes belonging to six distinct ethnic groups representing the three main described genetic clusters of Mexico (Northern, Southern, and Maya). Effective population size estimates of all Native American groups remained bel...

  7. eQTL epistasis: detecting epistatic effects and inferring hierarchical relationships of genes in biological pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Mingon; Zhang, Chunling; Chun, Hyung-Wook; Ding, Chris; Liu, Chunyu; Gao, Jean

    2015-03-01

    Epistasis is the interactions among multiple genetic variants. It has emerged to explain the 'missing heritability' that a marginal genetic effect does not account for by genome-wide association studies, and also to understand the hierarchical relationships between genes in the genetic pathways. The Fisher's geometric model is common in detecting the epistatic effects. However, despite the substantial successes of many studies with the model, it often fails to discover the functional dependence between genes in an epistasis study, which is an important role in inferring hierarchical relationships of genes in the biological pathway. We justify the imperfectness of Fisher's model in the simulation study and its application to the biological data. Then, we propose a novel generic epistasis model that provides a flexible solution for various biological putative epistatic models in practice. The proposed method enables one to efficiently characterize the functional dependence between genes. Moreover, we suggest a statistical strategy for determining a recessive or dominant link among epistatic expression quantitative trait locus to enable the ability to infer the hierarchical relationships. The proposed method is assessed by simulation experiments of various settings and is applied to human brain data regarding schizophrenia. The MATLAB source codes are publicly available at: http://biomecis.uta.edu/epistasis. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  8. Inorganic concepts relevant to metal binding, activity, and toxicity in a biological system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hoeschele, J.D. (Warner-Lambert Co., Ann Arbor, MI (USA). Parke-Davis Pharmaceutical Research Div.); Turner, J.E.; England, M.W. (Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (USA))

    1990-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to review selected physical and inorganic concepts and factors which might be important in assessing and/or understanding the fact and disposition of a metal system in a biological environment. Hopefully, such inquiries will ultimately permit us to understand, rationalize, and predict differences and trends in biological effects as a function of the basic nature of a metal system and, in optimal cases, serve as input to a system of guidelines for the notion of Chemical Dosimetry.'' The plan of this paper is to first review, in general terms, the basic principles of the Crystal Field Theory (CFT), a unifying theory of bonding in metal complexes. This will provide the necessary theoretical background for the subsequent discussion of selected concepts and factors. 21 refs., 7 figs., 6 tabs.

  9. CLINICAL AND BIOLOGICAL RELEVANCE OF EZH2 IN TRIPLE NEGATIVE BREAST CANCER

    OpenAIRE

    Hussein, Yaser R.; Sood, Anil K.; Bandyopadhyay, Sudeshna; Albashiti, Bassam; Semaan, Assaad; Nahleh, Zeina; Roh, Juwon; Han, Hee Dong; Lopez-Berestein, Gabriel; Ali-Fehmi, Rouba

    2012-01-01

    The polycomb group protein, enhancer of zeste homolog 2 (EZH2), is a transcriptional repressor involved in cell cycle regulation and has been linked to aggressive breast cancer. We examined the clinical and biological significance of EZH2 expression in triple-negative breast cancers. Tissue microarrays were constructed with invasive breast cancer cases and stained with EZH2, cytokeratin 5/6, epidermal growth factor receptor 1(EGFR) and p53. The expression of these markers was correlated with ...

  10. Behavioral and Biological Effects of Housing Conditions and Stress in Male Rats - Relevance to Heart Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    2006-08-01

    statistically significant effects for enrichment on various biological measures (e.g., Body weight , adrenal gland weights , fat adipose tissue). Studies of...anxiety-like behaviors as a consequence of neonatal maternal separation in Long-Evans rats. Pharmacology Biochemistry & Behavior, 73(1), 131-140...stress field. Journal of Human Stress, 15, 22-36. McIntosh, J., Anisman, H., & Merali, Z. (1999). Short and long-periods of neonatal maternal

  11. CSML2SBML: a novel tool for converting quantitative biological pathway models from CSML into SBML.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Chen; Nagasaki, Masao; Ikeda, Emi; Sekiya, Yayoi; Miyano, Satoru

    2014-07-01

    CSML and SBML are XML-based model definition standards which are developed with the aim of creating exchange formats for modeling, visualizing and simulating biological pathways. In this article we report a release of a format convertor for quantitative pathway models, namely CSML2SBML. It translates models encoded by CSML into SBML without loss of structural and kinetic information. The simulation and parameter estimation of the resulting SBML model can be carried out with compliant tool CellDesigner for further analysis. The convertor is based on the standards CSML version 3.0 and SBML Level 2 Version 4. In our experiments, 11 out of 15 pathway models in CSML model repository and 228 models in Macrophage Pathway Knowledgebase (MACPAK) are successfully converted to SBML models. The consistency of the resulting model is validated by libSBML Consistency Check of CellDesigner. Furthermore, the converted SBML model assigned with the kinetic parameters translated from CSML model can reproduce the same dynamics with CellDesigner as CSML one running on Cell Illustrator. CSML2SBML, along with its instructions and examples for use are available at http://csml2sbml.csml.org. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Spinocerebellar ataxia: miRNAs expose biological pathways underlying pervasive Purkinje cell degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Stijl, Rogier; Withoff, Sebo; Verbeek, Dineke S

    2017-12-01

    Recent work has demonstrated the importance of miRNAs in the pathogenesis of various brain disorders including the neurodegenerative disorder spinocerebellar ataxia (SCA). This review focuses on the role of miRNAs in the shared pathogenesis of the different SCA types. We examine the novel findings of a recent cell-type-specific RNA-sequencing study in mouse brain and discuss how the identification of Purkinje-cell-enriched miRNAs highlights biological pathways that expose the mechanisms behind pervasive Purkinje cell degeneration in SCA. These key pathways are likely to contain targets for therapeutic development and represent potential candidate genes for genetically unsolved SCAs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Assessment of Relevant Exposure Pathways in Scenario of Reuse of Very Low Level Radioactive Steel in Tunnel Constructions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hrncir, T.; Necas, V.

    2012-01-01

    Decommissioning process and related management of generated radioactive materials during this process became important topics during last several years because of continuously increasing number of nuclear power plant approaching the end of their lifetime. The very low level radioactive waste category includes considerable amount of materials arising from decommissioning. In line with international incentives of optimization of the waste management process, alternative concepts of recycling and reuse of materials are considered. One of these concepts of such optimization is the conditional release of materials with their subsequent recycling and reuse in industrial or nuclear sector. This paper is devoted to an option of recycling and reuse of conditionally released steel in industrial sector, specifically in motorway tunnel constructions. It is assumed that very low level radioactive steel would be released and reused in form of steel reinforcing components, such as steel nets and bars, assembled in primary and secondary lining of motorway tunnel. Assessment of exposure pathways relevant for construction, operation and post-operation period was performed. The computational tool VISIPLAN 3D ALARA was used for calculation of external individual effective dose for personnel constructing the tunnel and for members of the public driving through already built motorway tunnel. The simulation software GOLDSIM was used for the assessment of internal exposure pathways. GOLDSIM environment enables modelling of degradation processes and transport of radionuclides through unsaturated and saturated zone of subsoil. There are international recommendations available for the concept of release of radioactive materials into the environment derived from the principles that the individual effective dose received by critical individual must not exceed some tens of microSv/yr. Dose limits 10 microSv/yr or 50 microSv/yr considering specific conditions are stated in Slovak legislation

  14. Soluble ST2 associates with diabetes but not established cardiovascular risk factors: a new inflammatory pathway of relevance to diabetes?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashley M Miller

    Full Text Available Preliminary data mostly from animal models suggest the sST2/IL-33 pathway may have causal relevance for vascular disease and diabetes and thus point to a potential novel inflammatory link to cardiometabolic disease. However, the characterisation of sST2 levels in terms of metabolic or vascular risk in man is completely lacking. We sought to address this gap via a comprehensive analysis of risk factor and vascular correlates of sST2 in a cross-sectional study (pSoBid. We measured sST2 in plasma in 639 subjects and comprehensively related it to cardiovascular and diabetes risk factors and imaged atherosclerosis measures. Circulating sST2 levels increased with age, were lower in women and in highest earners. After adjusting for age and gender, sST2 levels associated strongly with markers of diabetes, including triglycerides [effect estimate (EE per 1 standard deviation increase in sST2:1.05 [95%CI 1.01,1.10], liver function (alanine aminotransaminase [ALT] and γ-glutamyl transferase [GGT]: EE 1.05 [1.01,1.09] and 1.13 [1.07,1.19] respectively, glucose (1.02 [1.00,1.03] and sICAM-1 (1.05 [1.02,1.07]. However, sST2 levels were not related to smoking, cholesterol, blood pressure, or atheroma (carotid intima media thickness, plaque presence. These results suggest that sST2 levels, in individuals largely without vascular disease, are related principally to markers associated with diabetes and ectopic fat and add support for a role of sST2 in diabetes. Further mechanistic studies determining how sST2 is linked to diabetes pathways may offer new insights into the inflammatory paradigm for type 2 diabetes.

  15. Formation of biologically relevant compounds of interest in chemical evolution from the radiolysis of succinonitrile solutions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Albarran, G.; Juarez, C.; Negron-Mendoza, A.

    1991-01-01

    Low molecular weight compounds such as H 2 , CO 2 , NH 3 were identified among the radiolytic products. Irradiated samples exhibit positive biuret test. IR spectra of the dry residue confirm the presence of amide groups. These results suggest the presence of peptidic type material, which increased with the radiation dose. Other compounds identified were several di and tricarboxylic acids. The initial yield of formation of a variety of products was calculated from the concentration vs dose plots. Some of the radiolytic compounds are of biological importance and their formation is significant to chemical evolution studies. (author) 7 refs

  16. Stepfather or biological father? Education-specific pathways of postdivorce fatherhood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christine Schnor

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Background: Men are commonly assigned the role of economic providers in the family, and education informs about their capacity to fulfil this role. Yet having biological ties to coresident children can determine the man's willingness to step into the provider role. This study investigates how education is linked to fatherhood after divorce, distinguishing between biological father and stepfather positions. Methods: We analysed life course data from 1,111 divorced Belgian men collected in the 'Divorce in Flanders' project. We used descriptive methods of sequence analysis to illustrate the pathways of postdivorce fatherhood. In multinomial logistic regressions, we estimated the likelihood of, firstly, being a father with coresident biological children or/and stepchildren and, secondly, repartnering with a mother and fathering children in this union. Results: Divorced men's family situation depend on their educational levels. More educated men are more often in the role of a resident biological father, whereas the less educated men are more often stepfathers. Men's resident arrangement for first-marriage children, their selection into a new union and the parental status of their new partner help explaining educational differences in post-divorce father positions. Highly educated men live more often with their children from first marriage and repartner more often and especially women without own coresident children, which is beneficial for their transition to a post-divorce birth. Contribution: The findings suggest that both capacity and willingness to support the postdivorce family are lower among the less educated. These education-specific pathways of postdivorce fatherhood are likely to enhance social inequalities.

  17. Gene expression profiling in whole blood identifies distinct biological pathways associated with obesity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gorman Shelby A

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Obesity is reaching epidemic proportions and represents a significant risk factor for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer. Methods To explore the relationship between increased body mass and gene expression in blood, we conducted whole-genome expression profiling of whole blood from seventeen obese and seventeen well matched lean subjects. Gene expression data was analyzed at the individual gene and pathway level and a preliminary assessment of the predictive value of blood gene expression profiles in obesity was carried out. Results Principal components analysis of whole-blood gene expression data from obese and lean subjects led to efficient separation of the two cohorts. Pathway analysis by gene-set enrichment demonstrated increased transcript levels for genes belonging to the "ribosome", "apoptosis" and "oxidative phosphorylation" pathways in the obese cohort, consistent with an altered metabolic state including increased protein synthesis, enhanced cell death from proinflammatory or lipotoxic stimuli, and increased energy demands. A subset of pathway-specific genes acted as efficient predictors of obese or lean class membership when used in Naive Bayes or logistic regression based classifiers. Conclusion This study provides a comprehensive characterization of the whole blood transcriptome in obesity and demonstrates that the investigation of gene expression profiles from whole blood can inform and illustrate the biological processes related to regulation of body mass. Additionally, the ability of pathway-related gene expression to predict class membership suggests the feasibility of a similar approach for identifying clinically useful blood-based predictors of weight loss success following dietary or surgical interventions.

  18. A novel ion pairing LC/MS metabolomics protocol for study of a variety of biologically relevant polar metabolites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knee, Jose M; Rzezniczak, Teresa Z; Barsch, Aiko; Guo, Kevin Z; Merritt, Thomas J S

    2013-10-01

    We report a method of ion-pairing liquid chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry (IP-LC-MS) that we have developed for the sensitive detection and quantification of a variety of biologically relevant polar molecules. We use the ion-pairing agent diamyl ammonium to improve chromatographic resolution of polar compounds, such as nucleotide cofactors, sugar phosphates, and organic acids, that are generally poorly retained by conventional reverse phase chromatographic methods. This method showed good linearity (average R value of 0.996) and reproducibility (generally RSD values <10%). We demonstrate the utility of this method by investigating the metabolomic signature of three distinct biological systems: the metabolic response to lack of superoxide dismutase activity and to paraquat induced oxidative stress, and the metabolic profiles of four different Drosophila species. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Carboxylate-Assisted Iridium-Catalyzed C-H Amination of Arenes with Biologically Relevant Alkyl Azides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Tao; Hu, Xuejiao; Wang, Zhen; Yang, Tiantian; Sun, Hao; Li, Guigen; Lu, Hongjian

    2016-02-24

    An iridium-catalyzed C-H amination of arenes with a wide substrate scope is reported. Benzamides with electron-donating and -withdrawing groups and linear, branched, and cyclic alkyl azides are all applicable. Cesium carboxylate is crucial for both reactivity and regioselectivity of the reactions. Many biologically relevant molecules, such as amino acid, peptide, steroid, sugar, and thymidine derivatives can be introduced to arenes with high yields and 100 % chiral retention. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  20. Solid State Structures of Alkali Metal Ion Complexes Formed by Low-Molecular-Weight Ligands of Biological Relevance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aoki, Katsuyuki; Murayama, Kazutaka; Hu, Ning-Hai

    2016-01-01

    This chapter provides structural data, mainly metal binding sites/modes, observed in crystal structures of alkali metal ion complexes containing low-molecular-weight ligands of biological relevance, mostly obtained from the Cambridge Structural Database (the CSD version 5.35 updated to February 2014). These ligands include (i) amino acids and small peptides, (ii) nucleic acid constituents (excluding quadruplexes and other oligonucleotides), (iii) simple carbohydrates, and (iv) naturally occurring antibiotic ionophores. For some representative complexes of these ligands, some details on the environment of the metal coordination and structural characteristics are described.

  1. Concise Review: Quiescence in Adult Stem Cells: Biological Significance and Relevance to Tissue Regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rumman, Mohammad; Dhawan, Jyotsna; Kassem, Moustapha

    2015-10-01

    Adult stem cells (ASCs) are tissue resident stem cells responsible for tissue homeostasis and regeneration following injury. In uninjured tissues, ASCs exist in a nonproliferating, reversibly cell cycle-arrested state known as quiescence or G0. A key function of the quiescent state is to preserve stemness in ASCs by preventing precocious differentiation, and thus maintaining a pool of undifferentiated ASCs. Recent evidences suggest that quiescence is an actively maintained state and that excessive or defective quiescence may lead to compromised tissue regeneration or tumorigenesis. The aim of this review is to provide an update regarding the biological mechanisms of ASC quiescence and their role in tissue regeneration. © 2015 AlphaMed Press.

  2. Elements determination of clinical relevance in biological tissues Dmdmdx/J dystrophic mice strains investigated by NAA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Metairon, Sabrina

    2012-01-01

    In this work the determination of chemistry elements in biological tissues (whole blood, bones and organs) of dystrophic mice, used as animal model of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), was performed using analytical nuclear technique. The aim of this work was to determine reference values of elements of clinical (Ca, Cl, K, Mg, Na) and nutritional (Br and S) relevance in whole blood, tibia, quadriceps and hearts from Dmdmdx/J (10 males and 10 females) dystrophic mice and C57BL/6J (10 males) control group mice, using Neutron Activation Analysis technique (NAA). To show in more details the alterations that this disease may cause in these biological tissues, correlations matrixes of the DMD mdx /J mouse strain were generated and compared with C57BL/6J control group. For this study 119 samples of biological tissue were irradiated in the IEA-R1 nuclear reactor at IPEN (Sao Paulo, Brazil). The concentrations of these elements in biological tissues of Dmd mdx /J and C57B/6J mice are the first indicative interval for reference values. Moreover, the alteration in some correlation coefficients data among the elements in the health status and in the diseased status indicates a connection between these elements in whole blood, tibia, quadriceps and heart. These results may help the researchers to evaluate the efficiency of new treatments and to compare the advantages of different treatment approaches before performing tests in patients with muscular dystrophy. (author)

  3. A rapid Q-PCR titration protocol for adenovirus and helper-dependent adenovirus vectors that produces biologically relevant results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallaher, Sean D.; Berk, Arnold J.

    2013-01-01

    Adenoviruses are employed in the study of cellular processes and as expression vectors used in gene therapy. The success and reproducibility of these studies is dependent in part on having accurate and meaningful titers of replication competent and helper-dependent adenovirus stocks, which is problematic due to the use of varied and divergent titration protocols. Physical titration methods, which quantify the total number of viral particles, are used by many, but are poor at estimating activity. Biological titration methods, such as plaque assays, are more biologically relevant, but are time consuming and not applicable to helper-dependent gene therapy vectors. To address this, a protocol was developed called “infectious genome titration” in which viral DNA is isolated from the nuclei of cells ~3 h post-infection, and then quantified by Q-PCR. This approach ensures that only biologically active virions are counted as part of the titer determination. This approach is rapid, robust, sensitive, reproducible, and applicable to all forms of adenovirus. Unlike other Q-PCR-based methods, titers determined by this protocol are well correlated with biological activity. PMID:23624118

  4. Diverse, Biologically Relevant, and Targetable Gene Rearrangements in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer and Other Malignancies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaver, Timothy M; Lehmann, Brian D; Beeler, J Scott; Li, Chung-I; Li, Zhu; Jin, Hailing; Stricker, Thomas P; Shyr, Yu; Pietenpol, Jennifer A

    2016-08-15

    Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) and other molecularly heterogeneous malignancies present a significant clinical challenge due to a lack of high-frequency "driver" alterations amenable to therapeutic intervention. These cancers often exhibit genomic instability, resulting in chromosomal rearrangements that affect the structure and expression of protein-coding genes. However, identification of these rearrangements remains technically challenging. Using a newly developed approach that quantitatively predicts gene rearrangements in tumor-derived genetic material, we identified and characterized a novel oncogenic fusion involving the MER proto-oncogene tyrosine kinase (MERTK) and discovered a clinical occurrence and cell line model of the targetable FGFR3-TACC3 fusion in TNBC. Expanding our analysis to other malignancies, we identified a diverse array of novel and known hybrid transcripts, including rearrangements between noncoding regions and clinically relevant genes such as ALK, CSF1R, and CD274/PD-L1 The over 1,000 genetic alterations we identified highlight the importance of considering noncoding gene rearrangement partners, and the targetable gene fusions identified in TNBC demonstrate the need to advance gene fusion detection for molecularly heterogeneous cancers. Cancer Res; 76(16); 4850-60. ©2016 AACR. ©2016 American Association for Cancer Research.

  5. Biological Production of a Hydrocarbon Fuel Intermediate Polyhydroxybutyrate (Phb) from a Process Relevant Lignocellulosic Derived Sugar

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, Wei; Mohagheghi, Ali; Mittal, Ashutosh; Pilath, Heidi; Johnson, David K.

    2015-03-22

    PHAs are synthesized by many microorganisms to serve as intracellular carbon storage molecules. In some bacterial strains, PHB can account for up to 80% of cell mass. In addition to its application in the packaging sector, PHB also has great potential as an intermediate in the production of hydrocarbon fuels. PHB can be thermally depolymerized and decarboxylated to propene which can be upgraded to hydrocarbon fuels via commercial oligomerization technologies. In recent years a great effort has been made in bacterial production of PHB, yet the production cost of the polymer is still much higher than conventional petrochemical plastics. The high cost of PHB is because the cost of the substrates can account for as much as half of the total product cost in large scale fermentation. Thus searching for cheaper and better substrates is very necessary for PHB production. In this study, we demonstrate production of PHB by Cupriavidus necator from a process relevant lignocellulosic derived sugar stream, i.e., saccharified hydrolysate slurry from pretreated corn stover. Good cell growth was observed on slurry saccharified with advanced enzymes and 40~60% of PHB was accumulated in the cells. The mechanism of inhibition in the toxic hydrolysate generated by pretreatment and saccharification of biomass, will be discussed.

  6. Potential biological pathways linking Type-D personality and poor health: A cross-sectional investigation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vera K Jandackova

    Full Text Available Type-D personality, defined as a combination of high negative affect and high social isolation, has been associated with poor health outcomes. However, pathways underlying this association are largely unknown. We investigated the relationship between Type-D personality and several biological and behavioral pathways including the autonomic nervous system, the immune system, glucose regulation and sleep in a large, apparently healthy sample.Data from a total of 646 respondents (age 41.6±11.5, 12,2% women were available for analysis. Persons with Type-D (negative affect and social isolation score ≥10 were contrasted with those without Type-D. Measures of plasma fibrinogen levels, white blood cell count, high sensitivity C-reactive protein, fasting plasma glucose (FPG, cholesterol, high-density and low-density lipoprotein, glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c, creatinine, triglycerides, and albumin were derived from fasting blood samples. Urine norepinephrine and free cortisol were determined by high-performance liquid chromatography. Time-domain heart rate variability (HRV measures were calculated for the 24hr recording period and for nighttime separately.Persons with Type-D had higher HbA1c, FPG, and fibrinogen, and lower nighttime HRV than those without Type-D, suggesting worse glycemic control, systemic inflammation and poorer autonomic nervous system modulation in Type-D persons. In addition, those with Type-D reported less social support and greater sleep difficulties while no group differences were observed for alcohol and cigarette consumption, physical activity and body mass index.Findings provide some of the first evidence for multiple possible biological and behavioral pathways between Type-D personality and increased morbidity and mortality.

  7. Altitude training causes haematological fluctuations with relevance for the Athlete Biological Passport.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonne, Thomas Christian; Lundby, Carsten; Lundby, Anne Kristine; Sander, Mikael; Bejder, Jacob; Nordsborg, Nikolai Baastrup

    2015-08-01

    The impact of altitude training on haematological parameters and the Athlete Biological Passport (ABP) was evaluated in international-level elite athletes. One group of swimmers lived high and trained high (LHTH, n = 10) for three to four weeks at 2130 m or higher whereas a control group (n = 10) completed a three-week training camp at sea-level. Haematological parameters were determined weekly three times before and four times after the training camps. ABP thresholds for haemoglobin concentration ([Hb]), reticulocyte percentage (RET%), OFF score and the abnormal blood profile score (ABPS) were calculated using the Bayesian model. After altitude training, six swimmers exceeded the 99% ABP thresholds: two swimmers exceeded the OFF score thresholds at day +7; one swimmer exceeded the OFF score threshold at day +28; one swimmer exceeded the threshold for RET% at day +14; and one swimmer surpassed the ABPS threshold at day +14. In the control group, no values exceeded the individual ABP reference range. In conclusion, LHTH induces haematological changes in Olympic-level elite athletes which can exceed the individually generated references in the ABP. Training at altitude should be considered a confounding factor for ABP interpretation for up to four weeks after altitude exposure but does not consistently cause abnormal values in the ABP. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  8. Testosterone and progesterone concentrations in blow samples are biologically relevant in belugas (Delphinapterus leucas).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richard, Justin T; Robeck, Todd R; Osborn, Steven D; Naples, Lisa; McDermott, Alexa; LaForge, Robert; Romano, Tracy A; Sartini, Becky L

    2017-05-15

    Steroid hormone analysis in blow (respiratory vapor) may provide a minimally invasive way to assess the reproductive status of wild cetaceans. Biological validation of the method is needed to allow for the interpretation of hormone measurements in blow samples. Utilizing samples collected from trained belugas (Delphinapterus leucas, n=20), enzyme immunoassays for testosterone and progesterone were validated for use with beluga blow samples. Testosterone concentrations in 40 matched blood and blow samples collected from 4 male belugas demonstrated a positive correlation (R 2 =0.52, pTestosterone concentrations (mean±SD) in blow samples collected from adult males (119.3±14.2pg/ml) were higher (ptestosterone concentrations in blow demonstrated a seasonal pattern of secretion, with peak secretion occurring during the breeding season (February-April, 136.95±33.8pg/ml). Progesterone concentrations in blow varied by reproductive status; pregnant females (410.6±87.8pg/ml) and females in the luteal phase of the estrous cycle (339.5±51.0pg/ml) had higher (ptestosterone or progesterone in belugas. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Regulatory T Cells in Colorectal Cancer: From Biology to Prognostic Relevance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dimitrios Mougiakakos

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Regulatory T cells (Tregs were initially described as "suppressive" lymphocytes in the 1980s. However, it took almost 20 years until the concept of Treg-mediated immune control in its present form was finally established. Tregs are obligatory for self-tolerance and defects within their population lead to severe autoimmune disorders. On the other hand Tregs may promote tolerance for tumor antigens and even hamper efforts to overcome it. Intratumoral and systemic accumulation of Tregs has been observed in various types of cancer and is often linked to worse disease course and outcome. Increase of circulating Tregs, as well as their presence in mesenteric lymph nodes and tumor tissue of patients with colorectal cancer de facto suggests a strong involvement of Tregs in the antitumor control. This review will focus on the Treg biology in view of colorectal cancer, means of Treg accumulation and the controversies regarding their prognostic significance. In addition, a concise overview will be given on how Tregs and their function can be targeted in cancer patients in order to bolster an inherent immune response and/or increase the efficacy of immunotherapeutic approaches.

  10. Genome-wide association and biological pathway analysis for milk-fat composition in Danish Holstein and Danish Jersey cattle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Buitenhuis, Bart; Janss, Luc L G; Poulsen, Nina Aagaard

    2014-01-01

    The milk fat profile of the Danish Holstein (DH) and Danish Jersey (DJ) show clear differences. Identification of the genomic regions, genes and biological pathways underlying the milk fat biosynthesis will improve the understanding of the biology underlying bovine milk fat production and may...... provide new possibilities to change the milk fat composition by selective breeding. In this study a genome wide association scan (GWAS) in the DH and DJ was performed for a detailed milk fatty acid (FA) profile using the HD bovine SNP array and subsequently a biological pathway analysis based on the SNP...

  11. TaBoo SeArch Algorithm with a Modified Inverse Histogram for Reproducing Biologically Relevant Rare Events of Proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harada, Ryuhei; Takano, Yu; Shigeta, Yasuteru

    2016-05-10

    The TaBoo SeArch (TBSA) algorithm [ Harada et al. J. Comput. Chem. 2015 , 36 , 763 - 772 and Harada et al. Chem. Phys. Lett. 2015 , 630 , 68 - 75 ] was recently proposed as an enhanced conformational sampling method for reproducing biologically relevant rare events of a given protein. In TBSA, an inverse histogram of the original distribution, mapped onto a set of reaction coordinates, is constructed from trajectories obtained by multiple short-time molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Rarely occurring states of a given protein are statistically selected as new initial states based on the inverse histogram, and resampling is performed by restarting the MD simulations from the new initial states to promote the conformational transition. In this process, the definition of the inverse histogram, which characterizes the rarely occurring states, is crucial for the efficiency of TBSA. In this study, we propose a simple modification of the inverse histogram to further accelerate the convergence of TBSA. As demonstrations of the modified TBSA, we applied it to (a) hydrogen bonding rearrangements of Met-enkephalin, (b) large-amplitude domain motions of Glutamine-Binding Protein, and (c) folding processes of the B domain of Staphylococcus aureus Protein A. All demonstrations numerically proved that the modified TBSA reproduced these biologically relevant rare events with nanosecond-order simulation times, although a set of microsecond-order, canonical MD simulations failed to reproduce the rare events, indicating the high efficiency of the modified TBSA.

  12. Copper isotope fractionation between aqueous compounds relevant to low temperature geochemistry and biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujii, Toshiyuki; Moynier, Frédéric; Abe, Minori; Nemoto, Keisuke; Albarède, Francis

    2013-06-01

    Isotope fractionation between the common Cu species present in solution (Cu+, Cu2+, hydroxide, chloride, sulfide, carbonate, oxalate, and ascorbate) has been investigated using both ab initio methods and experimental solvent extraction techniques. In order to establish unambiguously the existence of equilibrium isotope fractionation (as opposed to kinetic isotope fractionation), we first performed laboratory-scale liquid-liquid distribution experiments. Upon exchange between HCl medium and a macrocyclic complex, the 65Cu/63Cu ratio fractionated by -1.06‰ to -0.39‰. The acidity dependence of the fractionation was appropriately explained by ligand exchange reactions between hydrated H2O and Cl- via intramolecular vibrations. The magnitude of the Cu isotope fractionation among important Cu ligands was also estimated by ab initio methods. The magnitude of the nuclear field shift effect to the Cu isotope fractionation represents only ˜3% of the mass-dependent fractionation. The theoretical estimation was expanded to chlorides, hydroxides, sulfides, sulfates, and carbonates under different conditions of pH. Copper isotope fractionation of up to 2‰ is expected for different forms of Cu present in seawater and for different sediments (carbonates, hydroxides, and sulfides). We found that Cu in dissolved carbonates and sulfates is isotopically much heavier (+0.6‰) than free Cu. Isotope fractionation of Cu in hydroxide is minimal. The relevance of these new results to the understanding of metabolic processes was also discussed. Copper is an essential element used by a large number of proteins for electron transfer. Further theoretical estimates of δ65Cu in hydrated Cu(I) and Cu(II) ions, Cu(II) ascorbates, and Cu(II) oxalate predict Cu isotope fractionation during the breakdown of ascorbate into oxalate and account for the isotopically heavy Cu found in animal kidneys.

  13. A machine learning heuristic to identify biologically relevant and minimal biomarker panels from omics data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swan, Anna L; Stekel, Dov J; Hodgman, Charlie; Allaway, David; Alqahtani, Mohammed H; Mobasheri, Ali; Bacardit, Jaume

    2015-01-01

    Investigations into novel biomarkers using omics techniques generate large amounts of data. Due to their size and numbers of attributes, these data are suitable for analysis with machine learning methods. A key component of typical machine learning pipelines for omics data is feature selection, which is used to reduce the raw high-dimensional data into a tractable number of features. Feature selection needs to balance the objective of using as few features as possible, while maintaining high predictive power. This balance is crucial when the goal of data analysis is the identification of highly accurate but small panels of biomarkers with potential clinical utility. In this paper we propose a heuristic for the selection of very small feature subsets, via an iterative feature elimination process that is guided by rule-based machine learning, called RGIFE (Rule-guided Iterative Feature Elimination). We use this heuristic to identify putative biomarkers of osteoarthritis (OA), articular cartilage degradation and synovial inflammation, using both proteomic and transcriptomic datasets. Our RGIFE heuristic increased the classification accuracies achieved for all datasets when no feature selection is used, and performed well in a comparison with other feature selection methods. Using this method the datasets were reduced to a smaller number of genes or proteins, including those known to be relevant to OA, cartilage degradation and joint inflammation. The results have shown the RGIFE feature reduction method to be suitable for analysing both proteomic and transcriptomics data. Methods that generate large 'omics' datasets are increasingly being used in the area of rheumatology. Feature reduction methods are advantageous for the analysis of omics data in the field of rheumatology, as the applications of such techniques are likely to result in improvements in diagnosis, treatment and drug discovery.

  14. [Biological characteristics of cleft palate relevant gene thyroid transcription factor-2 transgenic mice].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Lei; Shi, Bing; Qian, Zheng; Meng, Tian; Wang, Yan

    2014-08-01

    The aim of this study is to establish a transgenic mouse model for cleft palate relevant gene thyroid transcription factor-2 (TTF-2), which can be used to study palatal shelf development when the expression pattern and regular activation of TTF-2 is altered. The C57BL/6J mouse TTF-2 gene was cloned through polymerase chain reaction (PCR) from the mouse genomic DNA. The TTF-2 gene was inserted into the expression vector pBROAD3-mcs to construct the recombinant expression vector pBROAD3-TTF-2. This expression vector was then microinjected into the male pronuclei of the fertilized mouse ovum. Thus, the TTF-2 transgenic mice model was established. The genotype of the transgenic mice was identified by PCR and Southern blot analysis. Immunohistochemistry identified the consistent expression of TTF-2 gene during its palatal shelf development. TTF-2 genes were microinjected into 982 fertilized ova. A total of 580 two-cell-stage embryos cultured and transplanted into the oviducts of 48 pseudopregnant female mice. Overall, 68 embryos were obtained for analysis. The genotype of the mice was determined through PCR and Southern blot analysis using genomic DNA extracted from tail biopsies of the transgenic fetus. A total of 13 TTF-2 transgenic mice were detected. The expression of TTF-2 gene during the palatal shelf development of the transgenic mice was consistently detected by immunohistochemistry. The recombinant expression vector pBROAD3-TTF-2 was integrated into mouse genome through microinjection. The transgenic mouse in the palatal shelf that consistently expressed TTF-2 was successfully established and displayed a cleft palate phenotype.

  15. Food Polyphenols Fail to Cause a Biologically Relevant Reduction of COX-2 Activity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ina Willenberg

    Full Text Available Epidemiologic studies show a correlation between the dietary intake of food polyphenols and beneficial health effects. Several in vitro studies indicate that the anti-inflammatory potential of polyphenols is, at least in part, mediated by a modulation of the enzymes of the arachidonic acid cascade, such as the prostaglandin forming cyclooxygenases (COXs. Evidence that this mode of action can be transferred to the situation in vivo is scarce. This study characterized effects of a subset of polyphenols on COX-2 expression and activity in vitro and compared the potency with known drugs. Next, the in vivo relevance of the observed in vitro effects was tested. Enzyme assays and incubations of polyphenols with the cancer cell line HCA-7 and lipopolysaccharide (LPS stimulated primary monocytes support the hypothesis that polyphenols can effect COX-2 expression and activity in vitro. The effects were most pronounced in the monocyte assay for wogonin, apigenin, resveratrol and genistein with IC50 values of 1.5 μM, 2.6 μM, 2.8 μM and 7.4 μM. However, these values are 100- to 1000-fold higher in comparison to those of the known pharmaceuticals celecoxib, indomethacin and dexamethasone. In an animal model of LPS induced sepsis, pretreatment with polyphenols (i. p. 100 mg/kg bw did not result in decreased plasma or tissue prostaglandin levels, whereas the positive control celecoxib effectively attenuated LPS induced prostaglandin formation. These data suggest that despite the moderate potency in vitro, an effect of polyphenols on COX-2 during acute inflammation is unlikely, even if a high dose of polyphenols is ingested.

  16. Prognostic value and in vitro biological relevance of Neuropilin 1 and Neuropilin 2 in osteosarcoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boro, Aleksandar; Arlt, Matthias Je; Lengnick, Harald; Robl, Bernhard; Husmann, Maren; Bertz, Josefine; Born, Walter; Fuchs, Bruno

    2015-01-01

    Neoadjuvant chemotherapy in osteosarcoma increased the long-term survival of patients with localized disease considerably but metastasizing osteosarcoma remained largely treatment resistant. Neuropilins, transmembrane glycoproteins, are important receptors for VEGF dependent hyper-vascularization in tumor angiogenesis and their aberrant expression promotes tumorigenesis and metastasis in many solid tumors. Our analysis of Neuropilin-1 (NRP1) and Neuropilin-2 (NRP2) immunostaining in a tissue microarray of 66 osteosarcoma patients identified NRP2 as an indicator of poor overall, metastasis-free and progression free survival while NRP1 had no predictive value. Patients with tumors that expressed NRP2 in the absence of NRP1 had a significantly worse prognosis than NRP1(-)/NRP2(-), NRP1(+) or NRP1(+)/NRP2(+) tumors. Moreover, patients with overt metastases and with NRP2-positive primary tumors had a significantly shorter survival rate than patients with metastases but NRP2-negative tumors. Furthermore, the expression of both NRP1 and NRP2 in osteosarcoma cell lines correlated to a variable degree with the metastatic potential of the respective cell line. To address the functional relevance of Neuropilins for VEGF signaling we used shRNA mediated down-regulation and blocking antibodies of NRP1 and NRP2 in the metastatic 143B and HuO9-M132 cell lines. In 143B cells, VEGFA signaling monitored by AKT phosphorylation was more inhibited by blocking of NRP1, whereas in HuO9-M132 cells NRP2 blocking was more effective indicating that NRP1 and NRP2 can substitute each other in the functional interaction with VEGFR1. Altogether, these data point to NRP2 as a powerful prognostic marker in osteosarcoma and together with NRP1 as a novel target for tumor-suppressive therapy.

  17. CLINICAL AND BIOLOGICAL RELEVANCE OF EZH2 IN TRIPLE NEGATIVE BREAST CANCER

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hussein, Yaser R.; Sood, Anil K.; Bandyopadhyay, Sudeshna; Albashiti, Bassam; Semaan, Assaad; Nahleh, Zeina; Roh, Juwon; Han, Hee Dong; Lopez-Berestein, Gabriel; Ali-Fehmi, Rouba

    2014-01-01

    The polycomb group protein, enhancer of zeste homolog 2 (EZH2), is a transcriptional repressor involved in cell cycle regulation and has been linked to aggressive breast cancer. We examined the clinical and biological significance of EZH2 expression in triple-negative breast cancers. Tissue microarrays were constructed with invasive breast cancer cases and stained with EZH2, cytokeratin 5/6, epidermal growth factor receptor 1(EGFR) and p53. The expression of these markers was correlated with clinicopathologic variables and patients’ outcome. Furthermore, in vivo EZH2 gene silencing was achieved using siRNA incorporated into chitosan nanoparticles. Out of 261 cases of invasive breast cancer, high expression of EZH2 was detected in 87 (33%) cases, and it was strongly associated with a triple-negative breast cancer phenotype (P<.001) compared to all other non-triple negative breast cancers. Furthermore, high EZH2 was significantly associated with high histologic grade (P=.01), estrogen receptor negativity (P<.001), progesterone receptor negativity (P<.001), EGFR positivity (P=.04), and high p53 expression (P<.001). Survival analysis demonstrated that patients with high EZH2 had a poorer overall survival, compared to those with low EZH2 (P=.03), and it retained its significance as an independent prognostic factor (P=.02). In addition, EZH2 gene silencing resulted in significant reduction in tumor growth (P<.01) in the orthotopic MB-231 mouse model of breast carcinoma. Our results show that high EZH2 expression is significantly associated with triple-negative breast cancer and decreased survival. EZH2 may represent a potential therapeutic target for this aggressive disease, which warrants further investigation. PMID:22436627

  18. Preparing nano-calcium phosphate particles via a biologically friendly pathway

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hu Qinghong; Xu Xurong; Tang Ruikang [Department of Chemistry and Centre of Biopathways and Biomaterials, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, Zhejang 310027 (China); Ji Huijiao; Liu Yukan; Zhang Ming, E-mail: rtang@zju.edu.c [Department of Biology, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, Zhejiang 310058 (China)

    2010-08-01

    It is widely agreed that nano-calcium phosphates (CaP) play an important role in tissue engineering and medical application due to their unique biological characteristics. However, the properties of nano-CaP, including bioactivity, biocompatibility and mechanical properties, are tailored over wide ranges by controlling the size and morphology of particles. Therefore, it is important to develop synthesis methods which can control the particle size distribution and shape uniformly. In this study, we report that polyacrylic acid (PAA) can act as an efficient agent to modulate nano-CaP formation. The dimension of the resultant sphere-like nanoparticles (5-60 nm) can readily be regulated by changing PAA concentrations (75-200 {mu}g ml{sup -1}). In contrast to other additives, PAA is a water-soluble polymer that has already been used as an excellent biocompatible implant material in vivo. Our in vitro proliferation experiments of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) demonstrate that the involvement of PAA does not change the bioactivity of the resultant nano-CaP. In contrast, the nano-CaP fabricated by using another typical control agent, hexadecyl (cetyl) trimethyl ammonium bromide, suppressed the cell proliferation of BMSCs. Thus, we suggest that the biopolymer, PAA, can provide a more biologically friendly pathway to prepare biological nano-CaP for biomedical application. (communication)

  19. The scaling law of climate change and its relevance to assessing (palaeo)biological responses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiessling, Wolfgang; Eichenseer, Kilian

    2014-05-01

    interglacials, are not monotonic, but punctuated by short-term cooling intervals. The fossil record tells us that biodiversity responded dramatically to ancient intervals of climate warming. We can now see that the apparently slower rates of change in some mass extinctions (Permian-Triassic, Triassic-Jurassic) were greater than today when the scaling law is considered. This reassures us that studying deep time patterns of organismic response to climate change is a worthwhile endeavor that is relevant for predicting the future. References Burrows, M. T., Schoeman, D. S., Buckley, L. B., Moore, P., Poloczanska, E. S., Brander, K. M., Brown, C., Bruno, J. F., Duarte, C. M., Halpern, B. S., Holding, J., Kappel, C. V., Kiessling, W., O'Connor, M. I., Pandolfi, J. M., Parmesan, C., Schwing, F. B., Sydeman, W. J., and Richardson, A. J.: The pace of shifting climate in marine and terrestrial ecosystems, Science, 334, 652-655, 2011. Gingerich, P. D.: Quantification and comparison of evolutionary rates, American Journal of Science, 293A, 453-478, 1993. Sadler, P. M.: Sediment accumulation rates and the completeness of stratigraphic sections, Journal of Geology, 89, 569-584, 1981. Sun, Y., Joachimski, M. M., Wignall, P. B., Yan, C., Chen, Y., Jiang, H., Wang, L., and Lai, X.: Lethally hot temperatures during the Early Triassic greenhouse, Science, 338, 366-370, 2012.

  20. Perspectives on the relevance of the circadian time structure to workplace threshold limit values and employee biological monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smolensky, Michael H; Reinberg, Alain E; Sackett-Lundeen, Linda

    2017-01-01

    The circadian time structure (CTS) and its disruption by rotating and nightshift schedules relative to work performance, accident risk, and health/wellbeing have long been areas of occupational medicine research. Yet, there has been little exploration of the relevance of the CTS to setting short-term, time-weighted, and ceiling threshold limit values (TLVs); conducting employee biological monitoring (BM); and establishing normative reference biological exposure indices (BEIs). Numerous publications during the past six decades document the CTS substantially affects the disposition - absorption, distribution, metabolism, and elimination - and effects of medications. Additionally, laboratory animal and human studies verify the tolerance to chemical, biological (contagious), and physical agents can differ extensively according to the circadian time of exposure. Because of slow and usually incomplete CTS adjustment by rotating and permanent nightshift workers, occupational chemical and other contaminant encounters occur during a different circadian stage than for dayshift workers. Thus, the intended protection of some TLVs when working the nightshift compared to dayshift might be insufficient, especially in high-risk settings. The CTS is germane to employee BM in that large-amplitude predictable-in-time 24h variation can occur in the concentration of urine, blood, and saliva of monitored chemical contaminants and their metabolites plus biomarkers indicative of adverse xenobiotic exposure. The concept of biological time-qualified (for rhythms) reference values, currently of interest to clinical laboratory pathology practice, is seemingly applicable to industrial medicine as circadian time and workshift-specific BEIs to improve surveillance of night workers, in particular. Furthermore, BM as serial assessments performed frequently both during and off work, exemplified by employee self-measurement of lung function using a small portable peak expiratory flow meter, can

  1. Identifying novel genes and biological processes relevant to the development of cancer therapy-induced mucositis: An informative gene network analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes-Gibby, Cielito C; Melkonian, Stephanie C; Wang, Jian; Yu, Robert K; Shelburne, Samuel A; Lu, Charles; Gunn, Gary Brandon; Chambers, Mark S; Hanna, Ehab Y; Yeung, Sai-Ching J; Shete, Sanjay

    2017-01-01

    Mucositis is a complex, dose-limiting toxicity of chemotherapy or radiotherapy that leads to painful mouth ulcers, difficulty eating or swallowing, gastrointestinal distress, and reduced quality of life for patients with cancer. Mucositis is most common for those undergoing high-dose chemotherapy and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation and for those being treated for malignancies of the head and neck. Treatment and management of mucositis remain challenging. It is expected that multiple genes are involved in the formation, severity, and persistence of mucositis. We used Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA), a novel network-based approach that integrates complex intracellular and intercellular interactions involved in diseases, to systematically explore the molecular complexity of mucositis. As a first step, we searched the literature to identify genes that harbor or are close to the genetic variants significantly associated with mucositis. Our literature review identified 27 candidate genes, of which ERCC1, XRCC1, and MTHFR were the most frequently studied for mucositis. On the basis of this 27-gene list, we used IPA to generate gene networks for mucositis. The most biologically significant novel molecules identified through IPA analyses included TP53, CTNNB1, MYC, RB1, P38 MAPK, and EP300. Additionally, uracil degradation II (reductive) and thymine degradation pathways (p = 1.06-08) were most significant. Finally, utilizing 66 SNPs within the 8 most connected IPA-derived candidate molecules, we conducted a genetic association study for oral mucositis in the head and neck cancer patients who were treated using chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy (186 head and neck cancer patients with oral mucositis vs. 699 head and neck cancer patients without oral mucositis). The top ranked gene identified through this association analysis was RB1 (rs2227311, p-value = 0.034, odds ratio = 0.67). In conclusion, gene network analysis identified novel molecules and biological

  2. A systems biology approach to analyse amplification in the JAK2-STAT5 signalling pathway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Timmer Jens

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The amplification of signals, defined as an increase in the intensity of a signal through networks of intracellular reactions, is considered one of the essential properties in many cell signalling pathways. Despite of the apparent importance of signal amplification, there have been few attempts to formalise this concept. Results In this work we investigate the amplification and responsiveness of the JAK2-STAT5 pathway using a kinetic model. The recruitment of EpoR to the plasma membrane, activation by Epo, and deactivation of the EpoR/JAK2 complex are considered as well as the activation and nucleocytoplasmic shuttling of STAT5. Using qualitative biological knowledge, we first establish the structure of a general power-law model. We then generate a family of models from which we select suitable candidates. The parameter values of the model are estimated from experimental quantitative time-course data. The final model, whether it is conventional model with fixed predefined integer kinetic orders or a model with variable non-integer kinetic orders, is selected on the basis of a good agreement between simulations and the experimental data. The model is used to analyse the responsiveness and amplification properties of the pathway with sustained, transient, and oscillatory stimulation. Conclusion The selected kinetic model predicts that the system acts as an amplifier with maximum amplification and sensitivity for input signals whose intensity match physiological values for Epo concentration and with duration in the range of one to 100 minutes. The response of the system reaches saturation for more intense and longer stimulation with Epo. We hypothesise that these properties of the system directly relate to the saturation of Epo receptor activation, its low recruitment to the plasma membrane and intense deactivation as predicted by the model.

  3. Associations of Genetic Polymorphisms Relevant to Metabolic Pathway of Vitamin D3 with Development and Prognosis of Childhood Bronchial Asthma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Ying; Wang, Zhansheng; Ma, Tongshuai

    2017-08-01

    This study was aimed at investigating the correlation between genetic polymorphisms relevant to metabolic pathway of vitamin D3 (VD 3 ) and susceptibility to childhood bronchial asthma. Altogether 143 childhood patients with bronchial asthma and 143 healthy children of Chinese Han ethnicity were enrolled in this study. The key single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were identified by HaploView 4.2 software and selected from previous investigations. Genomic DNAs were isolated from peripheral blood samples by using TaqMan Blood DNA kits. The genotyping of SNPs was performed by TaqMan SNPs genotyping assay. Odds ratios and corresponding 95% confidence intervals were calculated to evaluate the association between SNPs and susceptibility to bronchial asthma. Statistical analyses were conducted by using SPSS 13.0 software. Rs10766197 of CYP2R1, rs7041 and rs4588 of CG, rs4646536 of CYP27B1, rs2228570, rs7975232, and rs1544410 of VDR, as well as rs1805192 and rs10865710 of PPAR were shown to be significantly associated with increased risk of bronchial asthma. Besides, prognosis of childhood bronchial asthma, which was represented as Saint George Respiratory Questionnaire (SGRQ) scoring, was closely linked with CYP2R1 rs10766197, CYP27B1 rs4646536, VDR rs7975232, VDR rs1544410, PPAR rs1805192, and PPAR rs10865710. The haplotype analysis suggested that TA and CG of CG rs7041/rs4588, CA and AG of VDR rs7975232/rs1544410, and CC of PPAR rs1805192/rs10865710 were, respectively, correlated with levels of VD, IL-4, and IL-5. And only haplotypes of VDR showed associations with risk of bronchial asthma during childhood, whereas hardly any significance could be observed between the haplotypes and behavior of quality-of-life (SGRQ) scoring. Significant associations were found between rs10766197 of CYP2R1, rs7041 and rs4588 of CG, rs4646536 of CYP27B1, rs2228570, rs7975232, and rs1544410 of VDR, as well as rs1805192 and rs10865710 of PPAR and susceptibility to and prognosis of

  4. The practicalities and pitfalls of establishing a policy-relevant and cost-effective soil biological monitoring scheme.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faber, Jack H; Creamer, Rachel E; Mulder, Christian; Römbke, Jörg; Rutgers, Michiel; Sousa, J Paulo; Stone, Dorothy; Griffiths, Bryan S

    2013-04-01

    A large number of biological indicators have been proposed over the years for assessing soil quality. Although many of those have been applied in monitoring schemes across Europe, no consensus exists on the extent to which these indicators might perform best and how monitoring schemes can be further optimized in terms of scientific and policy relevance. Over the past decade, developments in environmental monitoring and risk assessment converged toward the use of indicators and endpoints that are related to soil functioning and ecosystem services. In view of the proposed European Union (EU) Soil Framework Directive, there is an urgent need to identify and evaluate indicators for soil biodiversity and ecosystem services. The recently started integrated project, Ecological Function and Biodiversity Indicators in European Soils (EcoFINDERS), aims to address this specific issue within the EU Framework Program FP7. Here, we 1) discuss how to use the concept of ecosystem services in soil monitoring, 2) review former and ongoing monitoring schemes, and 3) present an analysis of metadata on biological indicators in some EU member states. Finally, we discuss our experiences in establishing a logical sieve approach to devise a monitoring scheme for a standardized and harmonized application at European scale. Copyright © 2013 SETAC.

  5. On making nursing undergraduate human reproductive physiology content meaningful and relevant: discussion of human pleasure in its biological context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McClusky, Leon Mendel

    2012-01-01

    The traditional presentation of the Reproductive Physiology component in an Anatomy and Physiology course to nursing undergraduates focuses on the broad aspects of hormonal regulation of reproduction and gonadal anatomy, with the role of the higher centres of the brain omitted. An introductory discussion is proposed which could precede the lectures on the reproductive organs. The discussion gives an overview of the biological significance of human pleasure, the involvement of the neurotransmitter dopamine, and the role of pleasure in the survival of the individual and even species. Pleasure stimuli (positive and negative) and the biological significance of naturally-induced pleasurable experiences are briefly discussed in the context of reproduction and the preservation of genetic material with an aim to foster relevancy between subject material and human behaviour in any type of society. The tenderness of this aspect of the human existence is well-understood because of its invariable association with soul-revealing human expressions such as love, infatuation, sexual flirtations, all of which are underpinned by arousal, desire and/or pleasure. Assuming that increased knowledge correlates with increased confidence, the proposed approach may provide the nurse with an adequate knowledge base to overcome well-known barriers in communicating with their patients about matters of sexual health and intimacy. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Sex differences in panic-relevant responding to a 10% carbon dioxide-enriched air biological challenge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nillni, Yael I; Berenz, Erin C; Rohan, Kelly J; Zvolensky, Michael J

    2012-01-01

    The current study examined sex differences in psychological (i.e., self-reported anxiety, panic symptoms, and avoidance) and physiological (i.e., heart rate and skin conductance level) response to, and recovery from, a laboratory biological challenge. Participants were a community-recruited sample of 128 adults (63.3% women; M(age)=23.2 years, SD=8.9) who underwent a 4-min 10% CO(2)-enriched air biological challenge. As predicted, women reported more severe physical panic symptoms and avoidance (i.e., less willingness to participate in another challenge) and demonstrated increased heart rate as compared to men above and beyond the variance accounted for by other theoretically relevant variables (recent panic attack history, neuroticism, and anxiety sensitivity). Additionally, women demonstrated a faster rate of recovery with respect to heart rate compared to men. These results are in line with literature documenting sex-specific differences in panic psychopathology, and results are discussed in the context of possible mechanisms underlying sex differences in panic vulnerability. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Culturally relevant inquiry-based laboratory module implementations in upper-division genetics and cell biology teaching laboratories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siritunga, Dimuth; Montero-Rojas, María; Carrero, Katherine; Toro, Gladys; Vélez, Ana; Carrero-Martínez, Franklin A

    2011-01-01

    Today, more minority students are entering undergraduate programs than ever before, but they earn only 6% of all science or engineering PhDs awarded in the United States. Many studies suggest that hands-on research activities enhance students' interest in pursuing a research career. In this paper, we present a model for the implementation of laboratory research in the undergraduate teaching laboratory using a culturally relevant approach to engage students. Laboratory modules were implemented in upper-division genetics and cell biology courses using cassava as the central theme. Students were asked to bring cassava samples from their respective towns, which allowed them to compare their field-collected samples against known lineages from agricultural stations at the end of the implementation. Assessment of content and learning perceptions revealed that our novel approach allowed students to learn while engaged in characterizing Puerto Rican cassava. In two semesters, based on the percentage of students who answered correctly in the premodule assessment for content knowledge, there was an overall improvement of 66% and 55% at the end in the genetics course and 24% and 15% in the cell biology course. Our proposed pedagogical model enhances students' professional competitiveness by providing students with valuable research skills as they work on a problem to which they can relate.

  8. RANTES/CCL5 mediated-biological effects depend on the syndecan-4/PKCα signaling pathway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Loïc Maillard

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The perpetuation of angiogenesis is involved in certain chronic inflammatory diseases. The accelerated neovascularisation may result from an inflammatory status with a response of both endothelial cells and monocytes to inflammatory mediators such as chemokines. We have previously described in vitro and in vivo the pro-angiogenic effects of the chemokine Regulated on Activation, Normal T Cell Expressed and Secreted (RANTES/CCL5. The effects of RANTES/CCL5 may be related to its binding to G protein-coupled receptors and to proteoglycans such as syndecan-1 and -4. The aim of this study was to evaluate the functionality of syndecan-4 as a co-receptor of RANTES/CCL5 by the use of mutated syndecan-4 constructs. Our data demonstrate that site-directed mutations in syndecan-4 modify RANTES/CCL5 biological activities in endothelial cells. The SDC4S179A mutant, associated with an induced protein kinase C (PKCα activation, leads to higher RANTES/CCL5 pro-angiogenic effects, whereas the SDC4L188QQ and the SDC4A198del mutants, leading to lower phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2 binding or to lower PDZ protein binding respectively, are associated with reduced RANTES/CCL5 cellular effects. Moreover, our data highlight that the intracellular domain of SDC-4 is involved in RANTES/CCL5-induced activation of the PKCα signaling pathway and biological effect. As RANTES/CCL5 is involved in various physiopathological processes, the development of a new therapeutic strategy may be reliant on the mechanism by which RANTES/CCL5 exerts its biological activities, for example by targeting the binding of the chemokine to its proteoglycan receptor.

  9. Identification of functionally relevant populations in enhanced biological phosphorus removal processes based on intracellular polymers profiles and insights into the metabolic diversity and heterogeneity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Majed, Nehreen; Chernenko, Tatyana; Diem, Max; Gu, April Z

    2012-05-01

    This study proposed and demonstrated the application of a new Raman microscopy-based method for metabolic state-based identification and quantification of functionally relevant populations, namely polyphosphate accumulating organisms (PAOs) and glycogen accumulating organisms (GAOs), in enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) system via simultaneous detection of multiple intracellular polymers including polyphosphate (polyP), glycogen, and polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB). The unique Raman spectrum of different combinations of intracellular polymers within a cell at a given stage of the EBPR cycle allowed for its identification as PAO, GAO, or neither. The abundance of total PAOs and GAOs determined by Raman method were consistent with those obtained with polyP staining and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). Different combinations and quantities of intracellular polymer inclusions observed in single cells revealed the distribution of different sub-PAOs groups among the total PAO populations, which exhibit phenotypic and metabolic heterogeneity and diversity. These results also provided evidence for the hypothesis that different PAOs may employ different extents of combination of glycolysis and TCA cycle pathways for anaerobic reducing power and energy generation and it is possible that some PAOs may rely on TCA cycle solely without glycolysis. Sum of cellular level quantification of the internal polymers associated with different population groups showed differentiated and distributed trends of glycogen and PHB level between PAOs and GAOs, which could not be elucidated before with conventional bulk measurements of EBPR mixed cultures. © 2012 American Chemical Society

  10. A Systems Biology Analysis Unfolds the Molecular Pathways and Networks of Two Proteobacteria in Spaceflight and Simulated Microgravity Conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roy, Raktim; Shilpa, P Phani; Bagh, Sangram

    2016-09-01

    Bacteria are important organisms for space missions due to their increased pathogenesis in microgravity that poses risks to the health of astronauts and for projected synthetic biology applications at the space station. We understand little about the effect, at the molecular systems level, of microgravity on bacteria, despite their significant incidence. In this study, we proposed a systems biology pipeline and performed an analysis on published gene expression data sets from multiple seminal studies on Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium under spaceflight and simulated microgravity conditions. By applying gene set enrichment analysis on the global gene expression data, we directly identified a large number of new, statistically significant cellular and metabolic pathways involved in response to microgravity. Alteration of metabolic pathways in microgravity has rarely been reported before, whereas in this analysis metabolic pathways are prevalent. Several of those pathways were found to be common across studies and species, indicating a common cellular response in microgravity. We clustered genes based on their expression patterns using consensus non-negative matrix factorization. The genes from different mathematically stable clusters showed protein-protein association networks with distinct biological functions, suggesting the plausible functional or regulatory network motifs in response to microgravity. The newly identified pathways and networks showed connection with increased survival of pathogens within macrophages, virulence, and antibiotic resistance in microgravity. Our work establishes a systems biology pipeline and provides an integrated insight into the effect of microgravity at the molecular systems level. Systems biology-Microgravity-Pathways and networks-Bacteria. Astrobiology 16, 677-689.

  11. Nuclear Receptor Signaling Atlas: Opening Access to the Biology of Nuclear Receptor Signaling Pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becnel, Lauren B; Darlington, Yolanda F; Ochsner, Scott A; Easton-Marks, Jeremy R; Watkins, Christopher M; McOwiti, Apollo; Kankanamge, Wasula H; Wise, Michael W; DeHart, Michael; Margolis, Ronald N; McKenna, Neil J

    2015-01-01

    Signaling pathways involving nuclear receptors (NRs), their ligands and coregulators, regulate tissue-specific transcriptomes in diverse processes, including development, metabolism, reproduction, the immune response and neuronal function, as well as in their associated pathologies. The Nuclear Receptor Signaling Atlas (NURSA) is a Consortium focused around a Hub website (www.nursa.org) that annotates and integrates diverse 'omics datasets originating from the published literature and NURSA-funded Data Source Projects (NDSPs). These datasets are then exposed to the scientific community on an Open Access basis through user-friendly data browsing and search interfaces. Here, we describe the redesign of the Hub, version 3.0, to deploy "Web 2.0" technologies and add richer, more diverse content. The Molecule Pages, which aggregate information relevant to NR signaling pathways from myriad external databases, have been enhanced to include resources for basic scientists, such as post-translational modification sites and targeting miRNAs, and for clinicians, such as clinical trials. A portal to NURSA's Open Access, PubMed-indexed journal Nuclear Receptor Signaling has been added to facilitate manuscript submissions. Datasets and information on reagents generated by NDSPs are available, as is information concerning periodic new NDSP funding solicitations. Finally, the new website integrates the Transcriptomine analysis tool, which allows for mining of millions of richly annotated public transcriptomic data points in the field, providing an environment for dataset re-use and citation, bench data validation and hypothesis generation. We anticipate that this new release of the NURSA database will have tangible, long term benefits for both basic and clinical research in this field.

  12. Nuclear Receptor Signaling Atlas: Opening Access to the Biology of Nuclear Receptor Signaling Pathways.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lauren B Becnel

    Full Text Available Signaling pathways involving nuclear receptors (NRs, their ligands and coregulators, regulate tissue-specific transcriptomes in diverse processes, including development, metabolism, reproduction, the immune response and neuronal function, as well as in their associated pathologies. The Nuclear Receptor Signaling Atlas (NURSA is a Consortium focused around a Hub website (www.nursa.org that annotates and integrates diverse 'omics datasets originating from the published literature and NURSA-funded Data Source Projects (NDSPs. These datasets are then exposed to the scientific community on an Open Access basis through user-friendly data browsing and search interfaces. Here, we describe the redesign of the Hub, version 3.0, to deploy "Web 2.0" technologies and add richer, more diverse content. The Molecule Pages, which aggregate information relevant to NR signaling pathways from myriad external databases, have been enhanced to include resources for basic scientists, such as post-translational modification sites and targeting miRNAs, and for clinicians, such as clinical trials. A portal to NURSA's Open Access, PubMed-indexed journal Nuclear Receptor Signaling has been added to facilitate manuscript submissions. Datasets and information on reagents generated by NDSPs are available, as is information concerning periodic new NDSP funding solicitations. Finally, the new website integrates the Transcriptomine analysis tool, which allows for mining of millions of richly annotated public transcriptomic data points in the field, providing an environment for dataset re-use and citation, bench data validation and hypothesis generation. We anticipate that this new release of the NURSA database will have tangible, long term benefits for both basic and clinical research in this field.

  13. The nonconservative property of dissolved molybdenum in the western Taiwan Strait: Relevance of submarine groundwater discharges and biological utilization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Deli; Xia, Weiwei; Lu, Shuimiao; Wang, Guizhi; Liu, Qian; Moore, Willard S.; Arthur Chen, Chen-Tung

    2016-01-01

    This study examined dissolved Mo and sedimentary Mo along with hydrochemical parameters in the western Taiwan Strait (WTS) in May and August 2012. The results demonstrate that dissolved Mo could be depleted of as high as 10-20 nM during our May sampling period when the nutrient-enriched Min-Zhe coastal current ceased and spring blooms developed. The negative correlation between Chl-a and dissolved Mo suggests the possible involvement of high algal productivity in removing dissolved Mo out of the water column. Specific oceanographic settings (little currents) permitted a high sedimentary enrichment of Mo (>6 µg/g Mo) within the highly productive waters outside the Jiulong River mouth. Possibly, the high algal productivities and consequent organic matter sinks provide a pathway of Mo burial from water columns into sediments. Dissolved Mo was relatively high in groundwater samples, but we observed that submarine groundwater discharges (SGDs) only contributed to a relatively small percentage of the total dissolved Mo pool in WTS. It is probably attributable to the immediate removal of SGD-released Mo ions via adsorption onto newly formed Mn oxides once exposed to oxygenated seawater, followed by an elevated sedimentary Mo accumulation near the SGDs (˜5 µg/g). In addition to metal oxide particle scavenging and sulfide precipitation, we estimated that biological uptake along with Mo adsorption onto organic matter carriers could finally provide more than 10% of the annual sedimentary Mo accumulation in WTS.

  14. Identification of Genes Relevant to Pesticides and Biology from Global Transcriptome Data of Monochamus alternatus Hope (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) Larvae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shao, Ensi; Rebeca, Carballar-Lejarazú; Guo, Yajie; Xiong, Yueting; Mou, Yani; Xu, Runxue; Hu, Xia; Liang, Guanghong; Zou, Shuangquan; Guan, Xiong; Zhang, Feiping

    2016-01-01

    Monochamus alternatus Hope is the main vector in China of the Pine Wilt Disease caused by the pine wood nematode Bursaphelenchus xylophilus. Although chemical control is traditionally used to prevent pine wilt disease, new strategies based in biological control are promising ways for the management of the disease. However, there is no deep sequence analysis of Monochamus alternatus Hope that describes the transcriptome and no information is available about gene function of this insect vector. We used next generation sequencing technology to sequence the whole fourth instar larva transcriptome of Monochamus alternatus Hope and successfully built a Monochamus alternatus Hope transcriptome database. In total, 105,612 unigenes were assigned for Gene Ontology (GO) terms, information for 16,730 classified unigenes was obtained in the Clusters of Orthologous Groups (COGs) database, and 13,024 unigenes matched with 224 predicted pathways in the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genome (KEGG). In addition, genes related to putative insecticide resistance-related genes, RNAi, the Bt receptor, intestinal digestive enzymes, possible future insect control targets and immune-related molecules are described. This study provides valuable basic information that can be used as a gateway to develop new molecular tools for Monochamus alternatus Hope control strategies. PMID:26815657

  15. Alkali Metal Ion Complexes with Phosphates, Nucleotides, Amino Acids, and Related Ligands of Biological Relevance. Their Properties in Solution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crea, Francesco; De Stefano, Concetta; Foti, Claudia; Lando, Gabriele; Milea, Demetrio; Sammartano, Silvio

    2016-01-01

    Alkali metal ions play very important roles in all biological systems, some of them are essential for life. Their concentration depends on several physiological factors and is very variable. For example, sodium concentrations in human fluids vary from quite low (e.g., 8.2 mmol dm(-3) in mature maternal milk) to high values (0.14 mol dm(-3) in blood plasma). While many data on the concentration of Na(+) and K(+) in various fluids are available, the information on other alkali metal cations is scarce. Since many vital functions depend on the network of interactions occurring in various biofluids, this chapter reviews their complex formation with phosphates, nucleotides, amino acids, and related ligands of biological relevance. Literature data on this topic are quite rare if compared to other cations. Generally, the stability of alkali metal ion complexes of organic and inorganic ligands is rather low (usually log K  Na(+) > K(+) > Rb(+) > Cs(+). For example, for citrate it is: log K ML = 0.88, 0.80, 0.48, 0.38, and 0.13 at 25 °C and infinite dilution. Some considerations are made on the main aspects related to the difficulties in the determination of weak complexes. The importance of the alkali metal ion complexes was also studied in the light of modelling natural fluids and in the use of these cations as probes for different processes. Some empirical relationships are proposed for the dependence of the stability constants of Na(+) complexes on the ligand charge, as well as for correlations among log K values of NaL, KL or LiL species (L = generic ligand).

  16. Homeobox genes and tooth development: Understanding the biological pathways and applications in regenerative dental science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramanathan, Anand; Srijaya, Thekkeparambil Chandrabose; Sukumaran, Prema; Zain, Rosnah Binti; Abu Kasim, Noor Hayaty

    2018-01-01

    Homeobox genes are a group of conserved class of transcription factors that function as key regulators during the embryonic developmental processes. They act as master regulator for developmental genes, which involves coordinated actions of various auto and cross-regulatory mechanisms. In this review, we summarize the expression pattern of homeobox genes in relation to the tooth development and various signaling pathways or molecules contributing to the specific actions of these genes in the regulation of odontogenesis. An electronic search was undertaken using combination of keywords e.g. Homeobox genes, tooth development, dental diseases, stem cells, induced pluripotent stem cells, gene control region was used as search terms in PubMed and Web of Science and relevant full text articles and abstract were retrieved that were written in English. A manual hand search in text books were also carried out. Articles related to homeobox genes in dentistry and tissue engineering and regenerative medicine of odontogenesis were selected. The possible perspective of stem cells technology in odontogenesis and subsequent analysis of gene correction pertaining to dental disorders through the possibility of induced pluripotent stem cells technology is also inferred. We demonstrate the promising role of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine on odontogenesis, which can generate a new ray of hope in the field of dental science. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Exposure pathways and biological receptors: baseline data for the canyon uranium mine, Coconino County, Arizona

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hinck, Jo E.; Linder, Greg L.; Darrah, Abigail J.; Drost, Charles A.; Duniway, Michael C.; Johnson, Matthew J.; Méndez-Harclerode, Francisca M.; Nowak, Erika M.; Valdez, Ernest W.; van Riper, Charles; Wolff, S.W.

    2014-01-01

    Recent restrictions on uranium mining within the Grand Canyon watershed have drawn attention to scientific data gaps in evaluating the possible effects of ore extraction to human populations as well as wildlife communities in the area. Tissue contaminant concentrations, one of the most basic data requirements to determine exposure, are not available for biota from any historical or active uranium mines in the region. The Canyon Uranium Mine is under development, providing a unique opportunity to characterize concentrations of uranium and other trace elements, as well as radiation levels in biota, found in the vicinity of the mine before ore extraction begins. Our study objectives were to identify contaminants of potential concern and critical contaminant exposure pathways for ecological receptors; conduct biological surveys to understand the local food web and refine the list of target species (ecological receptors) for contaminant analysis; and collect target species for contaminant analysis prior to the initiation of active mining. Contaminants of potential concern were identified as arsenic, cadmium, chromium, copper, lead, mercury, nickel, selenium, thallium, uranium, and zinc for chemical toxicity and uranium and associated radionuclides for radiation. The conceptual exposure model identified ingestion, inhalation, absorption, and dietary transfer (bioaccumulation or bioconcentration) as critical contaminant exposure pathways. The biological survey of plants, invertebrates, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and small mammals is the first to document and provide ecological information on .200 species in and around the mine site; this study also provides critical baseline information about the local food web. Most of the species documented at the mine are common to ponderosa pine Pinus ponderosa and pinyon–juniper Pinus–Juniperus spp. forests in northern Arizona and are not considered to have special conservation status by state or federal agencies; exceptions

  18. Depletion of adult neurogenesis using the chemotherapy drug temozolomide in mice induces behavioural and biological changes relevant to depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egeland, M; Guinaudie, C; Du Preez, A; Musaelyan, K; Zunszain, P A; Fernandes, C; Pariante, C M; Thuret, S

    2017-04-25

    Numerous studies have examined links between postnatal neurogenesis and depression using a range of experimental methods to deplete neurogenesis. The antimitotic drug temozolomide (TMZ) has previously been used successfully as an experimental tool in animals to deplete adult neurogenesis and is used regularly on human patients as a standard chemotherapy for brain cancer. In this study, we wanted to evaluate whether TMZ as a model for chemotherapy treatment could affect parameters related to depression in an animal model. Prevalence rates of depression in patients is thought to be highly underdiagnosed, with some studies reporting rates as high as 90%. Results from this study in mice, treated with a regimen of TMZ similar to humans, exhibited behavioural and biochemical changes that have relevance to the development of depression. In particular, behavioural results demonstrated robust deficits in processing novelty and a significant increase in the corticosterone response. Quantification of neurogenesis using a novel sectioning method, which clearly evaluates dorsal and ventral neurogenesis separately, showed a significant correlation between the level of ventral neurogenesis and the corticosterone response. Depression is a complex disorder with discoveries regarding its neurobiology and how it relates to behaviour being only in their infancy. The findings presented in this study demonstrate that chemotherapy-induced decreases in neurogenesis results in previously unreported behavioural and biochemical consequences. These results, we argue, are indicative of a biological mechanism, which may contribute to the development of depression in patients being treated with chemotherapy and is separate from the mental distress resulting from a cancer diagnosis.

  19. Three-Dimensional Biologically Relevant Spectrum (BRS-3D: Shape Similarity Profile Based on PDB Ligands as Molecular Descriptors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ben Hu

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The crystallized ligands in the Protein Data Bank (PDB can be treated as the inverse shapes of the active sites of corresponding proteins. Therefore, the shape similarity between a molecule and PDB ligands indicated the possibility of the molecule to bind with the targets. In this paper, we proposed a shape similarity profile that can be used as a molecular descriptor for ligand-based virtual screening. First, through three-dimensional (3D structural clustering, 300 diverse ligands were extracted from the druggable protein–ligand database, sc-PDB. Then, each of the molecules under scrutiny was flexibly superimposed onto the 300 ligands. Superimpositions were scored by shape overlap and property similarity, producing a 300 dimensional similarity array termed the “Three-Dimensional Biologically Relevant Spectrum (BRS-3D”. Finally, quantitative or discriminant models were developed with the 300 dimensional descriptor using machine learning methods (support vector machine. The effectiveness of this approach was evaluated using 42 benchmark data sets from the G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR ligand library and the GPCR decoy database (GLL/GDD. We compared the performance of BRS-3D with other 2D and 3D state-of-the-art molecular descriptors. The results showed that models built with BRS-3D performed best for most GLL/GDD data sets. We also applied BRS-3D in histone deacetylase 1 inhibitors screening and GPCR subtype selectivity prediction. The advantages and disadvantages of this approach are discussed.

  20. High-fidelity de novo synthesis of pathways using microchip-synthesized oligonucleotides and general molecular biology equipment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wan, Wen; Lu, Min; Wang, Dongmei; Gao, Xiaolian; Hong, Jiong

    2017-07-21

    Engineering and evaluation of synthetic routes for generating valuable compounds require accurate and cost-effective de novo synthesis of genetic pathways. Here, we present an economical and streamlined de novo DNA synthesis approach for engineering a synthetic pathway with microchip-synthesized oligonucleotides (oligo). The process integrates entire oligo pool amplification, error-removal, and assembly of long DNA molecules. We utilized this method to construct a functional lycopene biosynthetic pathway (11.9 kb encoding 10 genes) in Escherichia coli using a highly error-prone microchip-synthesized oligo pool (479 oligos) without pre-purification, and the error-frequency was reduced from 14.25/kb to 0.53/kb. This low-equipment-dependent and cost-effective method can be widely applied for rapid synthesis of biosynthetic pathways in general molecular biology laboratories.

  1. Systems Biology Model of Interactions Between Tissue Growth Factors and DNA Damage Pathways: Low Dose Response and Cross-Talk in TGFbeta and ATM Signaling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    O' Neill, Peter [University of Oxford; Anderson, Jennifer [University of Oxford

    2014-10-02

    The etiology of radiation carcinogenesis has been described in terms of aberrant changes that span several levels of biological organization. Growth factors regulate many important cellular and tissue functions including apoptosis, differentiation and proliferation. A variety of genetic and epigenetic changes of growth factors have been shown to contribute to cancer initiation and progression. It is known that cellular and tissue damage to ionizing radiation is in part initiated by the production of reactive oxygen species, which can activate cytokine signaling, and the DNA damage response pathways, most notably the ATM signaling pathway. Recently the transforming growth factor β (TGFβ) pathway has been shown to regulate or directly interact with the ATM pathway in the response to radiation. The relevance of this interaction with the ATM pathway is not known although p53 becomes phosphorylated and DNA damage responses are involved. However, growth factor interactions with DNA damage responses have not been elucidated particularly at low doses and further characterization of their relationship to cancer processes is warranted. Our goal will be to use a systems biology approach to mathematically and experimentally describe the low dose responses and cross-talk between the ATM and TGFβ pathways initiated by low and high LET radiation. We will characterize ATM and TGFβ signaling in epithelial and fibroblast cells using 2D models and ultimately extending to 3D organotypic cell culture models to begin to elucidate possible differences that may occur for different cell types and/or inter-cellular communication. We will investigate the roles of the Smad and Activating transcription factor 2 (ATF2) proteins as the potential major contributors to cross- talk between the TGFβ and ATM pathways, and links to cell cycle control and/or the DNA damage response, and potential differences in their responses at low and high doses. We have developed various experimental

  2. Systems Biology Model of Interactions between Tissue Growth Factors and DNA Damage Pathways: Low Dose Response and Cross-Talk in TGFβ and ATM Signaling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cucinotta, Francis A [Univ. of Nevada, Las Vegas, NV (United States)

    2016-09-01

    The etiology of radiation carcinogenesis has been described in terms of aberrant changes that span several levels of biological organization. Growth factors regulate many important cellular and tissue functions including apoptosis, differentiation and proliferation. A variety of genetic and epigenetic changes of growth factors have been shown to contribute to cancer initiation and progression. It is known that cellular and tissue damage to ionizing radiation is in part initiated by the production of reactive oxygen species, which can activate cytokine signaling, and the DNA damage response pathways, most notably the ATM signaling pathway. Recently, the transforming growth factor β (TGFβ) pathway has been shown to regulate or directly interact with the ATM pathway in the response to radiation. The relevance of this interaction with the ATM pathway is not known although p53 becomes phosphorylated and DNA damage responses are involved. However, growth factor interactions with DNA damage responses have not been elucidated particularly at low doses, and further characterization of their relationship to cancer processes is warranted. Our goal will be to use a systems biology approach to mathematically and experimentally describe the low-dose responses and cross-talk between the ATM and TGFβ pathways initiated by low- and high-LET radiation. We will characterize ATM and TGFβ signaling in epithelial and fibroblast cells using 2D models and ultimately extending to 3D organotypic cell culture models to begin to elucidate possible differences that may occur for different cell types and/or inter-cellular communication. We will investigate the roles of the Smad and Activating transcription factor 2 (ATF2) proteins as the potential major contributors to crosstalk between the TGFβ and ATM pathways, and links to cell cycle control and/or the DNA damage response, and potential differences in their responses at low and high doses. We have developed various experimental

  3. Systems Biology Model of Interactions between Tissue Growth Factors and DNA Damage Pathways: Low Dose Response and Cross-Talk in TGFβ and ATM Signaling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cucinotta, Francis A

    2016-01-01

    The etiology of radiation carcinogenesis has been described in terms of aberrant changes that span several levels of biological organization. Growth factors regulate many important cellular and tissue functions including apoptosis, differentiation and proliferation. A variety of genetic and epigenetic changes of growth factors have been shown to contribute to cancer initiation and progression. It is known that cellular and tissue damage to ionizing radiation is in part initiated by the production of reactive oxygen species, which can activate cytokine signaling, and the DNA damage response pathways, most notably the ATM signaling pathway. Recently, the transforming growth factor β (TGFβ) pathway has been shown to regulate or directly interact with the ATM pathway in the response to radiation. The relevance of this interaction with the ATM pathway is not known although p53 becomes phosphorylated and DNA damage responses are involved. However, growth factor interactions with DNA damage responses have not been elucidated particularly at low doses, and further characterization of their relationship to cancer processes is warranted. Our goal will be to use a systems biology approach to mathematically and experimentally describe the low-dose responses and cross-talk between the ATM and TGFβ pathways initiated by low- and high-LET radiation. We will characterize ATM and TGFβ signaling in epithelial and fibroblast cells using 2D models and ultimately extending to 3D organotypic cell culture models to begin to elucidate possible differences that may occur for different cell types and/or inter-cellular communication. We will investigate the roles of the Smad and Activating transcription factor 2 (ATF2) proteins as the potential major contributors to crosstalk between the TGFβ and ATM pathways, and links to cell cycle control and/or the DNA damage response, and potential differences in their responses at low and high doses. We have developed various experimental

  4. Biological characterization of chemically diverse compounds targeting the Plasmodium falciparum coenzyme A synthesis pathway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabine Fletcher

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In the fight against malaria, the discovery of chemical compounds with a novel mode of action and/or chemistry distinct from currently used drugs is vital to counteract the parasite’s known ability to develop drug resistance. Another desirable aspect is efficacy against gametocytes, the sexual developmental stage of the parasite which enables the transmission through Anopheles vectors. Using a chemical rescue approach, we previously identified compounds targeting Plasmodium falciparum coenzyme A (CoA synthesis or utilization, a promising target that has not yet been exploited in anti-malarial drug development. Results We report on the outcomes of a series of biological tests that help to define the species- and stage-specificity, as well as the potential targets of these chemically diverse compounds. Compound activity against P. falciparum gametocytes was determined to assess stage-specificity and transmission-reducing potential. Against early stage gametocytes IC50 values ranging between 60 nM and 7.5 μM were obtained. With the exception of two compounds with sub-micromolar potencies across all intra-erythrocytic stages, activity against late stage gametocytes was lower. None of the compounds were specific pantothenate kinase inhibitors. Chemical rescue profiling with CoA pathway intermediates demonstrated that most compounds acted on either of the two final P. falciparum CoA synthesis enzymes, phosphopantetheine adenylyltransferase (PPAT or dephospho CoA kinase (DPCK. The most active compound targeted either phosphopantothenoylcysteine synthetase (PPCS or phosphopantothenoylcysteine decarboxylase (PPCDC. Species-specificity was evaluated against Trypanosoma cruzi and Trypanosoma brucei brucei. No specific activity against T. cruzi amastigotes was observed; however three compounds inhibited the viability of trypomastigotes with sub-micromolar potencies and were confirmed to act on T. b. brucei CoA synthesis. Conclusions

  5. Bridging Lung Development with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Relevance of Developmental Pathways in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Pathogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boucherat, Olivier; Morissette, Mathieu C; Provencher, Steeve; Bonnet, Sébastien; Maltais, François

    2016-02-15

    Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is characterized by chronic airflow limitation. This generic term encompasses emphysema and chronic bronchitis, two common conditions, each having distinct but also overlapping features. Recent epidemiological and experimental studies have challenged the traditional view that COPD is exclusively an adult disease occurring after years of inhalational insults to the lungs, pinpointing abnormalities or disruption of the pathways that control lung development as an important susceptibility factor for adult COPD. In addition, there is growing evidence that emphysema is not solely a destructive process because it is also characterized by a failure in cell and molecular maintenance programs necessary for proper lung development. This leads to the concept that tissue regeneration required stimulation of signaling pathways that normally operate during development. We undertook a review of the literature to outline the contribution of developmental insults and genes in the occurrence and pathogenesis of COPD, respectively.

  6. Kinesio taping influences the mechanical behaviour of the skin of the low back: A possible pathway for functionally relevant effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cimino, Stephanie R; Beaudette, Shawn M; Brown, Stephen H M

    2018-01-23

    Despite claims of functional benefits of kinesio tape application, little mechanistic evidence exists to support physiological pathways to achieve these benefits. As kinesio tape is adhered directly to the skin, it can be supposed that any pathway needs to first achieve effects at this level. To address this, two layers of the skin, the combined epidermis and dermis, as well as the hypodermis were studied. Specifically, -kinematic measures of skin surface stretch and retraction, as well as ultrasound measures of skin thickness, were made along all edges of kinesio tape applied over the low back. Results demonstrated that the more superficial skin layer (combined epidermis and dermis), but not the deeper hypodermis, was significantly stretched (p = .0001) and thinner (p = .0016) at either end of the tape, and significantly retracted (p tape. These results were partly dependent upon spine posture; skin retraction along the tape edges was only apparent in neutral and flexed (but not extended) spine postures, while skin thinning at the tape ends was only apparent in neutral and extended (but not flexed) spine postures. Hypodermal thickness was not affected by kinesio tape application at any location or in any posture. In summary, measured deformations at the skin surface and within the epidermal and dermal regions provide plausible pathways through which kinesio tape could achieve its claimed benefits. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Clinicopathological variables of sporadic schwannomas of peripheral nerve in 291 patients and expression of biologically relevant markers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Eric D; Ingram, Davis; Metcalf-Doetsch, William; Khan, Dilshad; Al Sannaa, Ghadah; Le Loarer, Francois; Lazar, Alexander J F; Slopis, John; Torres, Keila E; Lev, Dina; Pollock, Raphael E; McCutcheon, Ian E

    2017-09-08

    OBJECTIVE While sporadic peripheral schwannomas (SPSs) are generally well treated with surgery, their biology is not well understood. Consequently, treatment options are limited. The aim of this study was to provide a comprehensive description of SPS. The authors describe clinicopathological features and treatment outcomes of patients harboring these tumors, and they assess expression of biomarkers using a clinically annotated tissue microarray. Together, these data give new insight into the biology and management of SPS. METHODS Patients presenting with a primary SPS between 1993 and 2011 (n = 291) were selected from an institutional registry to construct a clinical database. All patients underwent follow-up, and short- and long-term outcomes were assessed. Expression of relevant biomarkers was assessed using a new tissue microarray (n = 121). RESULTS SPSs were generally large (mean 5.5 cm) and frequently painful at presentation (55%). Most patients were treated with surgery (80%), the majority of whom experienced complete resolution (52%) or improvement (18%) of their symptoms. Tumors that were completely resected (85%) did not recur. Some patients experienced short-term (16%) and long-term (4%) complications postoperatively. Schwannomas expressed higher levels of platelet-derived growth factor receptor-β (2.1) than malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors (MPNSTs) (1.5, p = 0.004) and neurofibromas (1.33, p = 0.007). Expression of human epidermal growth factor receptor-2 was greater in SPSs (0.91) than in MPNSTs (0.33, p = 0.002) and neurofibromas (0.33, p = 0.026). Epidermal growth factor receptor was expressed in far fewer SPS cells (10%) than in MPNSTs (58%, p SPSs more frequently expressed cytoplasmic survivin (66% of tumor cells) than normal nerve (46% of cells), but SPS expressed nuclear survivin in fewer tumor cells than in MPNSTs (24% and 50%, respectively; p = 0.018). CONCLUSIONS Complete resection is curative for SPS. Left untreated, however, these

  8. Self-assembled structures and pKa value of oleic acid in systems of biological relevance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salentinig, Stefan; Sagalowicz, Laurent; Glatter, Otto

    2010-07-20

    In the human digestion process, triglycerides are hydrolyzed by lipases to monoglycerides and the corresponding fatty acids. Here we report the self-assembly of structures in biologically relevant, emulsified oleic acid-monoolein mixtures at various pH values and oleic acid concentrations. Small-angle X-ray scattering, cryogenic transmission electron microscopy, and dynamic light scattering were used to investigate the structures formed, and to follow their transitions while these factors were varied. The addition of oleic acid to monoolein-based cubosomes was found to increase the critical packing parameter in the system. Structural transitions from bicontinuous cubosomes through hexosomes and micellar cubosomes (Fd3m symmetry) to emulsified microemulsions occur with increasing oleic acid concentration. At sufficiently high oleic acid concentration, the internal particle structure was also found to strongly depend on the pH of the aqueous phase: transformations from emulsified microemulsion through micellar cubosomes, hexosomes, and bicontinuous cubosomes to vesicles can be observed as a function of increasing pH. The reversible transition from liquid crystals to vesicles occurs at intestinal pH values (between pH 7 and 8). The hydrodynamic radius of the particles decreases from around 120 nm for internally structured particles to around 60 nm for vesicles. All transitions with pH are reversible. Finally, the apparent pK(a) for oleic acid in monoolein could be determined from the change of structure with pH. This value is within the physiological pH range of the intestine and depends somewhat on composition.

  9. A systems biology strategy reveals biological pathways and plasma biomarker candidates for potentially toxic statin-induced changes in muscle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reijo Laaksonen

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Aggressive lipid lowering with high doses of statins increases the risk of statin-induced myopathy. However, the cellular mechanisms leading to muscle damage are not known and sensitive biomarkers are needed to identify patients at risk of developing statin-induced serious side effects. METHODOLOGY: We performed bioinformatics analysis of whole genome expression profiling of muscle specimens and UPLC/MS based lipidomics analyses of plasma samples obtained in an earlier randomized trial from patients either on high dose simvastatin (80 mg, atorvastatin (40 mg, or placebo. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: High dose simvastatin treatment resulted in 111 differentially expressed genes (1.5-fold change and p-value<0.05, while expression of only one and five genes was altered in the placebo and atorvastatin groups, respectively. The Gene Set Enrichment Analysis identified several affected pathways (23 gene lists with False Discovery Rate q-value<0.1 in muscle following high dose simvastatin, including eicosanoid synthesis and Phospholipase C pathways. Using lipidomic analysis we identified previously uncharacterized drug-specific changes in the plasma lipid profile despite similar statin-induced changes in plasma LDL-cholesterol. We also found that the plasma lipidomic changes following simvastatin treatment correlate with the muscle expression of the arachidonate 5-lipoxygenase-activating protein. CONCLUSIONS: High dose simvastatin affects multiple metabolic and signaling pathways in skeletal muscle, including the pro-inflammatory pathways. Thus, our results demonstrate that clinically used high statin dosages may lead to unexpected metabolic effects in non-hepatic tissues. The lipidomic profiles may serve as highly sensitive biomarkers of statin-induced metabolic alterations in muscle and may thus allow us to identify patients who should be treated with a lower dose to prevent a possible toxicity.

  10. Compensatory role of the Nrf2–ARE pathway against paraquat toxicity: Relevance of 26S proteasome activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yasuhiko Izumi

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Oxidative stress and the ubiquitin–proteasome system play a key role in the pathogenesis of Parkinson disease. Although the herbicide paraquat is an environmental factor that is involved in the etiology of Parkinson disease, the role of 26S proteasome in paraquat toxicity remains to be determined. Using PC12 cells overexpressing a fluorescent protein fused to the proteasome degradation signal, we report here that paraquat yielded an inhibitory effect on 26S proteasome activity without an obvious decline in 20S proteasome activity. Relative low concentrations of proteasome inhibitors caused the accumulation of nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2, which is targeted to the ubiquitin–proteasome system, and activated the antioxidant response element (ARE-dependent transcription. Paraquat also upregulated the protein level of Nrf2 without increased expression of Nrf2 mRNA, and activated the Nrf2–ARE pathway. Consequently, paraquat induced expression of Nrf2-dependent ARE-driven genes, such as γ-glutamylcysteine synthetase, catalase, and hemeoxygenase-1. Knockdown of Nrf2 or inhibition of γ-glutamylcysteine synthetase and catalase exacerbated paraquat-induced toxicity, whereas suppression of hemeoxygenase-1 did not. These data indicate that the compensatory activation of the Nrf2–ARE pathway via inhibition of 26S proteasome serves as part of a cellular defense mechanism to protect against paraquat toxicity.

  11. Compensatory role of the Nrf2-ARE pathway against paraquat toxicity: Relevance of 26S proteasome activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Izumi, Yasuhiko; Yamamoto, Noriyuki; Matsushima, Sayaka; Yamamoto, Takamori; Takada-Takatori, Yuki; Akaike, Akinori; Kume, Toshiaki

    2015-11-01

    Oxidative stress and the ubiquitin-proteasome system play a key role in the pathogenesis of Parkinson disease. Although the herbicide paraquat is an environmental factor that is involved in the etiology of Parkinson disease, the role of 26S proteasome in paraquat toxicity remains to be determined. Using PC12 cells overexpressing a fluorescent protein fused to the proteasome degradation signal, we report here that paraquat yielded an inhibitory effect on 26S proteasome activity without an obvious decline in 20S proteasome activity. Relative low concentrations of proteasome inhibitors caused the accumulation of nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2), which is targeted to the ubiquitin-proteasome system, and activated the antioxidant response element (ARE)-dependent transcription. Paraquat also upregulated the protein level of Nrf2 without increased expression of Nrf2 mRNA, and activated the Nrf2-ARE pathway. Consequently, paraquat induced expression of Nrf2-dependent ARE-driven genes, such as γ-glutamylcysteine synthetase, catalase, and hemeoxygenase-1. Knockdown of Nrf2 or inhibition of γ-glutamylcysteine synthetase and catalase exacerbated paraquat-induced toxicity, whereas suppression of hemeoxygenase-1 did not. These data indicate that the compensatory activation of the Nrf2-ARE pathway via inhibition of 26S proteasome serves as part of a cellular defense mechanism to protect against paraquat toxicity. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Production and hosting by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Design, Development, and Psychometric Analysis of a General, Organic, and Biological Chemistry Topic Inventory Based on the Identified Main Chemistry Topics Relevant to Nursing Clinical Practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Corina E.

    2013-01-01

    This two-stage study focused on the undergraduate nursing course that covers topics in general, organic, and biological (GOB) chemistry. In the first stage, the central objective was to identify the main concepts of GOB chemistry relevant to the clinical practice of nursing. The collection of data was based on open-ended interviews of both nursing…

  13. Microbial production of natural and non-natural flavonoids: Pathway engineering, directed evolution and systems/synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pandey, Ramesh Prasad; Parajuli, Prakash; Koffas, Mattheos A G; Sohng, Jae Kyung

    2016-01-01

    In this review, we address recent advances made in pathway engineering, directed evolution, and systems/synthetic biology approaches employed in the production and modification of flavonoids from microbial cells. The review is divided into two major parts. In the first, various metabolic engineering and system/synthetic biology approaches used for production of flavonoids and derivatives are discussed broadly. All the manipulations/engineering accomplished on the microorganisms since 2000 are described in detail along with the biosynthetic pathway enzymes, their sources, structures of the compounds, and yield of each product. In the second part of the review, post-modifications of flavonoids by four major reactions, namely glycosylations, methylations, hydroxylations and prenylations using recombinant strains are described. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. DMPD: Type I interferon receptors: biochemistry and biological functions. [Dynamic Macrophage Pathway CSML Database

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available 17502368 Type I interferon receptors: biochemistry and biological functions. de Wee...(.html) (.csml) Show Type I interferon receptors: biochemistry and biological functions. PubmedID 17502368 T...itle Type I interferon receptors: biochemistry and biological functions. Authors

  15. DMPD: Lysophospholipid receptors: signaling and biology. [Dynamic Macrophage Pathway CSML Database

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available 15189145 Lysophospholipid receptors: signaling and biology. Ishii I, Fukushima N, Y...e X, Chun J. Annu Rev Biochem. 2004;73:321-54. (.png) (.svg) (.html) (.csml) Show Lysophospholipid receptors: signaling and biology.... PubmedID 15189145 Title Lysophospholipid receptors: signaling and biology. Authors

  16. Dissection of Biological Property of Chinese Acupuncture Point Zusanli Based on Long-Term Treatment via Modulating Multiple Metabolic Pathways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guangli Yan

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Acupuncture has a history of over 3000 years and is a traditional Chinese medical therapy that uses hair-thin metal needles to puncture the skin at specific points on the body to promote wellbeing, while its molecular mechanism and ideal biological pathways are still not clear. High-throughput metabolomics is the global assessment of endogenous metabolites within a biologic system and can potentially provide a more accurate snap shot of the actual physiological state. We hypothesize that acupuncture-treated human would produce unique characterization of metabolic phenotypes. In this study, UPLC/ESI-HDMS coupled with pattern recognition methods and system analysis were carried out to investigate the mechanism and metabolite biomarkers for acupuncture treatment at “Zusanli” acupoint (ST-36 as a case study. The top 5 canonical pathways including alpha-linolenic acid metabolism, d-glutamine and d-glutamate metabolism, citrate cycle, alanine, aspartate, and glutamate metabolism, and vitamin B6 metabolism pathways were acutely perturbed, and 53 differential metabolites were identified by chemical profiling and may be useful to clarify the physiological basis and mechanism of ST-36. More importantly, network construction has led to the integration of metabolites associated with the multiple perturbation pathways. Urine metabolic profiling might be a promising method to investigate the molecular mechanism of acupuncture.

  17. Characterizing and optimizing human anticancer drug targets based on topological properties in the context of biological pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jian; Wang, Yan; Shang, Desi; Yu, Fulong; Liu, Wei; Zhang, Yan; Feng, Chenchen; Wang, Qiuyu; Xu, Yanjun; Liu, Yuejuan; Bai, Xuefeng; Li, Xuecang; Li, Chunquan

    2015-04-01

    One of the challenging problems in drug discovery is to identify the novel targets for drugs. Most of the traditional methods for drug targets optimization focused on identifying the particular families of "druggable targets", but ignored their topological properties based on the biological pathways. In this study, we characterized the topological properties of human anticancer drug targets (ADTs) in the context of biological pathways. We found that the ADTs tended to present the following seven topological properties: influence the number of the pathways related to cancer, be localized at the start or end of the pathways, interact with cancer related genes, exhibit higher connectivity, vulnerability, betweenness, and closeness than other genes. We first ranked ADTs based on their topological property values respectively, then fused them into one global-rank using the joint cumulative distribution of an N-dimensional order statistic to optimize human ADTs. We applied the optimization method to 13 anticancer drugs, respectively. Results demonstrated that over 70% of known ADTs were ranked in the top 20%. Furthermore, the performance for mercaptopurine was significant: 6 known targets (ADSL, GMPR2, GMPR, HPRT1, AMPD3, AMPD2) were ranked in the top 15 and other four out of the top 15 (MAT2A, CDKN1A, AREG, JUN) have the potentialities to become new targets for cancer therapy. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Relevance of biotic pathways to the long-term regulation of nuclear waste disposal: Phase 2, Final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McKenzie, D.H.; Cadwell, L.L.; Kennedy, W.E. Jr.; Prohammer, L.A.; Simmons, M.A.

    1986-11-01

    The results reported here establish the relevance and propose a method for including biotic transport in the assessment and licensing process for commercial low-level waste disposal sites. Earlier work identified the biotic transport mechanisms and process scenarios linking biotic transport with dose to man, and developed models for assessment of impacts. Model modification and improvement efforts in enhancing the ability to represent soil erosion and soil transport within the trench cover. Two alternative hypotheses on plant root uptake were incorporated into the model to represent transport of radionuclides by roots that penetrate the buried waste. Enhancements were also made to the scenario for future site intruder activities. Representation of waste package decomposition in the model was confirmed as the best available alternative. Results from sensitivity analyses indicate that additional information is needed to evaluate the alternative hypotheses for plant root uptake of buried wastes. Site-specific evaluations of the contribution from biotic transport to the potential dose to man establish the relevance in the assessment process. The BIOPORT/MAXI1 computer software package is proposed for dose assessments of commercial low-level waste disposal sites

  19. Relevance of biotic pathways to the long-term regulation of nuclear waste disposal: Phase 2, Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McKenzie, D.H.; Cadwell, L.L.; Kennedy, W.E. Jr.; Prohammer, L.A.; Simmons, M.A.

    1986-11-01

    The results reported here establish the relevance and propose a method for including biotic transport in the assessment and licensing process for commercial low-level waste disposal sites. Earlier work identified the biotic transport mechanisms and process scenarios linking biotic transport with dose to man, and developed models for assessment of impacts. Model modification and improvement efforts in enhancing the ability to represent soil erosion and soil transport within the trench cover. Two alternative hypotheses on plant root uptake were incorporated into the model to represent transport of radionuclides by roots that penetrate the buried waste. Enhancements were also made to the scenario for future site intruder activities. Representation of waste package decomposition in the model was confirmed as the best available alternative. Results from sensitivity analyses indicate that additional information is needed to evaluate the alternative hypotheses for plant root uptake of buried wastes. Site-specific evaluations of the contribution from biotic transport to the potential dose to man establish the relevance in the assessment process. The BIOPORT/MAXI1 computer software package is proposed for dose assessments of commercial low-level waste disposal sites.

  20. The Glutamate Dehydrogenase Pathway and Its Roles in Cell and Tissue Biology in Health and Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Plaitakis

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH is a hexameric enzyme that catalyzes the reversible conversion of glutamate to α-ketoglutarate and ammonia while reducing NAD(P+ to NAD(PH. It is found in all living organisms serving both catabolic and anabolic reactions. In mammalian tissues, oxidative deamination of glutamate via GDH generates α-ketoglutarate, which is metabolized by the Krebs cycle, leading to the synthesis of ATP. In addition, the GDH pathway is linked to diverse cellular processes, including ammonia metabolism, acid-base equilibrium, redox homeostasis (via formation of fumarate, lipid biosynthesis (via oxidative generation of citrate, and lactate production. While most mammals possess a single GDH1 protein (hGDH1 in the human that is highly expressed in the liver, humans and other primates have acquired, via duplication, an hGDH2 isoenzyme with distinct functional properties and tissue expression profile. The novel hGDH2 underwent rapid evolutionary adaptation, acquiring unique properties that enable enhanced enzyme function under conditions inhibitory to its ancestor hGDH1. These are thought to provide a biological advantage to humans with hGDH2 evolution occurring concomitantly with human brain development. hGDH2 is co-expressed with hGDH1 in human brain, kidney, testis and steroidogenic organs, but not in the liver. In human cerebral cortex, hGDH1 and hGDH2 are expressed in astrocytes, the cells responsible for removing and metabolizing transmitter glutamate, and for supplying neurons with glutamine and lactate. In human testis, hGDH2 (but not hGDH1 is densely expressed in the Sertoli cells, known to provide the spermatids with lactate and other nutrients. In steroid producing cells, hGDH1/2 is thought to generate reducing equivalents (NADPH in the mitochondria for the biosynthesis of steroidal hormones. Lastly, up-regulation of hGDH1/2 expression occurs in cancer, permitting neoplastic cells to utilize glutamine/glutamate for their growth

  1. Developmental biology informs cancer: the emerging role of the hedgehog signaling pathway in upper gastrointestinal cancers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Keping; Abbruzzese, James L

    2003-10-01

    The hedgehog (Hh) signaling pathway plays many roles in invertebrate and vertebrate development. For example, specific inhibition of sonic Hh expression is critical during early stages of pancreas organogenesis, but an active Hh pathway appears to be required for maintenance of adult endocrine functions. Mutational inactivation of the Hh pathway has been demonstrated in human malignancies of the skin, cerebellum, and skeletal muscle. Now, two papers implicate aberrant Hh signaling in human upper gastrointestinal cancers including those developing from the esophagus, stomach, biliary tract, and pancreas.

  2. Hepatic SRC-1 Activity Orchestrates Transcriptional Circuitries of Amino Acid Pathways with Potential Relevance for Human Metabolic Pathogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tannour-Louet, Mounia; York, Brian; Tang, Ke; Stashi, Erin; Bouguerra, Hichem; Zhou, Suoling; Yu, Hui; Wong, Lee-Jun C.; Stevens, Robert D.; Xu, Jianming; Newgard, Christopher B.; O'Malley, Bert W.

    2014-01-01

    Disturbances in amino acid metabolism are increasingly recognized as being associated with, and serving as prognostic markers for chronic human diseases, such as cancer or type 2 diabetes. In the current study, a quantitative metabolomics profiling strategy revealed global impairment in amino acid metabolism in mice deleted for the transcriptional coactivator steroid receptor coactivator (SRC)-1. Aberrations were hepatic in origin, because selective reexpression of SRC-1 in the liver of SRC-1 null mice largely restored amino acids concentrations to normal levels. Cistromic analysis of SRC-1 binding sites in hepatic tissues confirmed a prominent influence of this coregulator on transcriptional programs regulating amino acid metabolism. More specifically, SRC-1 markedly impacted tyrosine levels and was found to regulate the transcriptional activity of the tyrosine aminotransferase (TAT) gene, which encodes the rate-limiting enzyme of tyrosine catabolism. Consequently, SRC-1 null mice displayed low TAT expression and presented with hypertyrosinemia and corneal alterations, 2 clinical features observed in the human syndrome of TAT deficiency. A heterozygous missense variant of SRC-1 (p.P1272S) that is known to alter its coactivation potential, was found in patients harboring idiopathic tyrosinemia-like disorders and may therefore represent one risk factor for their clinical symptoms. Hence, we reinforce the concept that SRC-1 is a central factor in the fine orchestration of multiple pathways of intermediary metabolism, suggesting it as a potential therapeutic target that may be exploitable in human metabolic diseases and cancer. PMID:25148457

  3. Relevance of biotic pathways to the long-term regulation of nuclear waste disposal. Phase I. Final report. Vol. 4

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McKenzie, D.H.; Cadwell, L.L.; Eberhardt, L.E.; Kennedy, W.E. Jr.; Peloquin, R.A.; Simmons, M.A.

    1984-05-01

    Licensing and regulation of commercial low-level waste (CLLW) burial facilities require that anticipated risks associated with burial sites be evaluated for the life of the facility. This work reviewed the existing capability to evaluate dose to man resulting from the potential redistribution of buried radionuclides by plants and animals that we have termed biotic transport. Through biotic transport, radionuclides can be moved to locations where they can enter exposure pathways to man. We found that predictive models currently in use did not address the long-term risks resulting from the cumulative transport of radionuclides. Although reports in the literature confirm that biotic transport phenomena are common, assessments routinely ignore the associated risks or dismiss them as insignificant without quantitative evaluation. To determine the potential impacts of biotic transport, we made order-of-magnitude estimates of the dose to man for biotic transport processes at reference arid and humid CLLW disposal sites. Estimated doses to site residents after assumed loss of institutional control were comparable to dose estimates for the intruder-agricultural scenario defined in the DEIS for 10 CFR 61 (NRC). The reported lack of potential importance of biotic transport at low-level waste sites in earlier assessment studies is not confirmed by order of magnitude estimates presented in this study. 17 references, 10 figures, 8 tables.

  4. Relevance of biotic pathways to the long-term regulation of nuclear waste disposal. Phase I. Final report. Vol. 4

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McKenzie, D.H.; Cadwell, L.L.; Eberhardt, L.E.; Kennedy, W.E. Jr.; Peloquin, R.A.; Simmons, M.A.

    1984-05-01

    Licensing and regulation of commercial low-level waste (CLLW) burial facilities require that anticipated risks associated with burial sites be evaluated for the life of the facility. This work reviewed the existing capability to evaluate dose to man resulting from the potential redistribution of buried radionuclides by plants and animals that we have termed biotic transport. Through biotic transport, radionuclides can be moved to locations where they can enter exposure pathways to man. We found that predictive models currently in use did not address the long-term risks resulting from the cumulative transport of radionuclides. Although reports in the literature confirm that biotic transport phenomena are common, assessments routinely ignore the associated risks or dismiss them as insignificant without quantitative evaluation. To determine the potential impacts of biotic transport, we made order-of-magnitude estimates of the dose to man for biotic transport processes at reference arid and humid CLLW disposal sites. Estimated doses to site residents after assumed loss of institutional control were comparable to dose estimates for the intruder-agricultural scenario defined in the DEIS for 10 CFR 61 (NRC). The reported lack of potential importance of biotic transport at low-level waste sites in earlier assessment studies is not confirmed by order of magnitude estimates presented in this study. 17 references, 10 figures, 8 tables

  5. Integration of prior biological knowledge and epigenetic information enhances the prediction accuracy of the Bayesian Wnt pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinha, Shriprakash

    2014-11-01

    Computational modeling of the Wnt signaling pathway has gained prominence for its use as a diagnostic tool to develop therapeutic cancer target drugs and predict test samples as tumorous/normal. Diagnostic tools entail modeling of the biological phenomena behind the pathway while prediction requires inclusion of factors for discriminative classification. This manuscript develops simple static Bayesian network predictive models of varying complexity by encompassing prior partially available biological knowledge about intra/extracellular factors and incorporating information regarding epigenetic modification into a few genes that are known to have an inhibitory effect on the pathway. Incorporation of epigenetic information enhances the prediction accuracy of test samples in human colorectal cancer. In comparison to the Naive Bayes model where β-catenin transcription complex activation predictions are assumed to correspond to sample predictions, the new biologically inspired models shed light on differences in behavior of the transcription complex and the state of samples. Receiver operator curves and their respective area under the curve measurements obtained from predictions of the state of the test sample and the corresponding predictions of the state of activation of the β-catenin transcription complex of the pathway for the test sample indicate a significant difference between the transcription complex being on (off) and its association with the sample being tumorous (normal). The two-sample Kolmogorov-Smirnov test confirms the statistical deviation between the distributions of these predictions. Hitherto unknown relationship between factors like DKK2, DKK3-1 and SFRP-2/3/5 w.r.t. the β-catenin transcription complex has been inferred using these causal models.

  6. TC-1 (c8orf4) enhances aggressive biologic behavior in lung cancer through the Wnt/β-catenin pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Kai; Huang, Lijun; Li, Wenhai; Yan, Xiaolong; Li, Xiaofei; Zhang, Zhipei; Jin, Faguang; Lei, Jie; Ba, Guangzhen; Liu, Boya; Wang, Xiaoping; Wang, Yunjie

    2013-11-01

    The thyroid cancer-1 (TC-1) or c8orf4 gene encodes a 106-residue naturally disordered protein that has been found to be associated with thyroid, gastric, and breast cancer. A recent study has indicated that the protein functions as a positive regulator in the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway in human breast cancer. However, no research has been done in the area of lung cancer. Therefore, the goal of the present study was to confirm the relationship among TC-1, lung cancer, and the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway. The expression of TC-1 was immunohistochemically examined in 147 patients with non-small-cell lung cancer. TC-1-overexpressed and silenced A549 cells were infected using lentivirus and MTT cell proliferation analysis, and Matrigel invasion assays and scratch-wound assays were performed to confirm the biologic behavioral changes in different A549 cell subsets. The Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway, key gene β-catenin, target genes of vascular endothelial growth factor, cyclin D1, matrix metalloproteinase-7, c-myc, and survivin were tested at the mRNA and protein level. TC-1 was detected in 97 of the 147 non-small-cell lung cancer primary tumor specimens, and its expression correlated with the TNM stage and regional lymph node metastasis (P cell line. Furthermore, expression of TC-1 protein affected the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway's downstream genes, such as vascular endothelial growth factor and matrix metalloproteinase-7, at the mRNA and protein level. TC-1 expression is associated with aggressive biologic behavior in lung cancer and might coordinate with the Wnt/β-catenin pathway as a positive upstream regulator that induces these behaviors. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Integrated genomic characterization reveals novel, therapeutically relevant drug targets in FGFR and EGFR pathways in sporadic intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mitesh J Borad

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Advanced cholangiocarcinoma continues to harbor a difficult prognosis and therapeutic options have been limited. During the course of a clinical trial of whole genomic sequencing seeking druggable targets, we examined six patients with advanced cholangiocarcinoma. Integrated genome-wide and whole transcriptome sequence analyses were performed on tumors from six patients with advanced, sporadic intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (SIC to identify potential therapeutically actionable events. Among the somatic events captured in our analysis, we uncovered two novel therapeutically relevant genomic contexts that when acted upon, resulted in preliminary evidence of anti-tumor activity. Genome-wide structural analysis of sequence data revealed recurrent translocation events involving the FGFR2 locus in three of six assessed patients. These observations and supporting evidence triggered the use of FGFR inhibitors in these patients. In one example, preliminary anti-tumor activity of pazopanib (in vitro FGFR2 IC50≈350 nM was noted in a patient with an FGFR2-TACC3 fusion. After progression on pazopanib, the same patient also had stable disease on ponatinib, a pan-FGFR inhibitor (in vitro, FGFR2 IC50≈8 nM. In an independent non-FGFR2 translocation patient, exome and transcriptome analysis revealed an allele specific somatic nonsense mutation (E384X in ERRFI1, a direct negative regulator of EGFR activation. Rapid and robust disease regression was noted in this ERRFI1 inactivated tumor when treated with erlotinib, an EGFR kinase inhibitor. FGFR2 fusions and ERRFI mutations may represent novel targets in sporadic intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma and trials should be characterized in larger cohorts of patients with these aberrations.

  8. Nitric oxide and nitrous oxide turnover in natural and engineered microbial communities: biological pathways, chemical reactions, and novel technologies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schreiber, Frank; Wunderlin, Pascal; Udert, Kai M.; Wells, George F.

    2012-01-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O) is an environmentally important atmospheric trace gas because it is an effective greenhouse gas and it leads to ozone depletion through photo-chemical nitric oxide (NO) production in the stratosphere. Mitigating its steady increase in atmospheric concentration requires an understanding of the mechanisms that lead to its formation in natural and engineered microbial communities. N2O is formed biologically from the oxidation of hydroxylamine (NH2OH) or the reduction of nitrite (NO−2) to NO and further to N2O. Our review of the biological pathways for N2O production shows that apparently all organisms and pathways known to be involved in the catabolic branch of microbial N-cycle have the potential to catalyze the reduction of NO−2 to NO and the further reduction of NO to N2O, while N2O formation from NH2OH is only performed by ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB). In addition to biological pathways, we review important chemical reactions that can lead to NO and N2O formation due to the reactivity of NO−2, NH2OH, and nitroxyl (HNO). Moreover, biological N2O formation is highly dynamic in response to N-imbalance imposed on a system. Thus, understanding NO formation and capturing the dynamics of NO and N2O build-up are key to understand mechanisms of N2O release. Here, we discuss novel technologies that allow experiments on NO and N2O formation at high temporal resolution, namely NO and N2O microelectrodes and the dynamic analysis of the isotopic signature of N2O with quantum cascade laser absorption spectroscopy (QCLAS). In addition, we introduce other techniques that use the isotopic composition of N2O to distinguish production pathways and findings that were made with emerging molecular techniques in complex environments. Finally, we discuss how a combination of the presented tools might help to address important open questions on pathways and controls of nitrogen flow through complex microbial communities that eventually lead to N2O build

  9. Nitric oxide and nitrous oxide turnover in natural and engineered microbial communities: biological pathways, chemical reactions and novel technologies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frank eSchreiber

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Nitrous oxide (N2O is an environmentally important atmospheric trace gas because it is an effective greenhouse gas and it leads to ozone depletion through photo-chemical nitric oxide (NO production in the stratosphere. Mitigating its steady increase in atmospheric concentration requires an understanding of the mechanisms that lead to its formation in natural and engineered microbial communities. N2O is formed biologically from the oxidation of hydroxylamine (NH2OH or the reduction of nitrite (NO2- to NO and further to N2O. Our review of the biological pathways for N2O production shows that apparently all organisms and pathways known to be involved in the catabolic branch of microbial N-cycle have the potential to catalyze the reduction of NO2- to NO and the further reduction of NO to N2O, while N2O formation from NH2OH is only performed by ammonia oxidizing bacteria. In addition to biological pathways, we review important chemical reactions that can lead to NO and N2O formation due to the reactivity of NO2-, NH2OH and nitroxyl (HNO. Moreover, biological N2O formation is highly dynamic in response to N-imbalance imposed on a system. Thus, understanding NO formation and capturing the dynamics of NO and N2O build-up are key to understand mechanisms of N2O release. Here, we discuss novel technologies that allow experiments on NO and N2O formation at high temporal resolution, namely NO and N2O microelectrodes and the dynamic analysis of the isotopic signature of N2O with quantum cascade laser based absorption spectroscopy. In addition, we introduce other techniques that use the isotopic composition of N2O to distinguish production pathways and findings that were made with emerging molecular techniques in complex environments. Finally, we discuss how a combination of the presented tools might help to address important open questions on pathways and controls of nitrogen flow through complex microbial communities that eventually lead to N2O build-up.

  10. The comparative immunogenicity of biologic therapy and its clinical relevance in psoriatic arthritis: a systematic review of the literature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balsa, Alejandro; Lula, Sadiq; Marshall, Lisa; Szczypa, Piotr; Aikman, Laraine

    2018-03-20

    Biologic agents have demonstrated efficacy in treating patients with psoriatic arthritis (PsA). Biologic agents also have an intrinsic capacity to induce an immune response in patients that could result in unwanted adverse events and/or treatment failure. Areas covered: In this systematic literature review, the authors document the incidence of immune responses, primarily anti-drug antibodies (ADA), to the biologic therapeutic agents currently in clinical practice for the treatment of PsA. The authors discuss the importance of these responses with respect to clinical practice. Expert opinion: Our evaluation of the published literature shows that the immune responses to the various biologic therapeutic agents currently being used to treat PsA are similar to those observed for these agents in other rheumatic diseases. Moreover, similar to observations in other rheumatic diseases, the incidence of ADA formation to biologic agents in patients with PsA is often decreased when patients are given concomitant treatment with disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs. These data strongly suggest that the immune response is a characteristic of the biologic agent. Using therapeutic drug monitoring may be an approach to assess the immune response to the agent and to mitigate the potential impact on efficacy and safety, and consequently optimize treatment.

  11. Biologically relevant oxidants and terminology, classification and nomenclature of oxidatively generated damage to nucleobases and 2-deoxyribose in nucleic acids

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cadet, Jean; Loft, Steffen; Olinski, Ryszard

    2012-01-01

    of the oxidized bases including 8-oxo-7,8-dihydroguanine (8-oxoGua), a ubiquitous marker of almost every type of oxidative stress in cells. Efforts to standardize the nomenclature and abbreviations of the main DNA degradation products that arise from oxidative pathways are reported. Information is also provided...

  12. Redundancy control in pathway databases (ReCiPa): an application for improving gene-set enrichment analysis in Omics studies and "Big data" biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vivar, Juan C; Pemu, Priscilla; McPherson, Ruth; Ghosh, Sujoy

    2013-08-01

    Abstract Unparalleled technological advances have fueled an explosive growth in the scope and scale of biological data and have propelled life sciences into the realm of "Big Data" that cannot be managed or analyzed by conventional approaches. Big Data in the life sciences are driven primarily via a diverse collection of 'omics'-based technologies, including genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, transcriptomics, metagenomics, and lipidomics. Gene-set enrichment analysis is a powerful approach for interrogating large 'omics' datasets, leading to the identification of biological mechanisms associated with observed outcomes. While several factors influence the results from such analysis, the impact from the contents of pathway databases is often under-appreciated. Pathway databases often contain variously named pathways that overlap with one another to varying degrees. Ignoring such redundancies during pathway analysis can lead to the designation of several pathways as being significant due to high content-similarity, rather than truly independent biological mechanisms. Statistically, such dependencies also result in correlated p values and overdispersion, leading to biased results. We investigated the level of redundancies in multiple pathway databases and observed large discrepancies in the nature and extent of pathway overlap. This prompted us to develop the application, ReCiPa (Redundancy Control in Pathway Databases), to control redundancies in pathway databases based on user-defined thresholds. Analysis of genomic and genetic datasets, using ReCiPa-generated overlap-controlled versions of KEGG and Reactome pathways, led to a reduction in redundancy among the top-scoring gene-sets and allowed for the inclusion of additional gene-sets representing possibly novel biological mechanisms. Using obesity as an example, bioinformatic analysis further demonstrated that gene-sets identified from overlap-controlled pathway databases show stronger evidence of prior association

  13. Use of a bovine genome array to identify new biological pathways for beef marbling in Hanwoo (Korean Cattle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lim Da-jeong

    2010-11-01

    , which is involved in connective tissue degradation, could play a role in an important biological pathway for building up marbling in cattle. Moreover, ADAMTS4 and TGFβ1could potentially be used as an early biological marker for marbling fat content in the early stages of growth.

  14. The practicalities and pitfalls of establishing a policy-relevant and cost-effective soil biological monitoring scheme

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Faber, J.H.; Creamer, R.E.; Mulder, C.; Römbke, J.; Rutgers, M.; Sousa, J.P.; Stone, D.; Griffiths, B.S.

    2013-01-01

    A large number of biological indicators have been proposed over the years for assessing soil quality. Although many of those have been applied in monitoring schemes across Europe, no consensus exists on the extent to which these indicators might perform best and how monitoring schemes can be further

  15. Relevance of biotic pathways to the long-term regulation of nuclear waste disposal. A report on Tasks 1 and 2 of Phase I

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McKenzie, D.H.; Cadwell, L.L.; Cushing, C.E. Jr.; Harty, R.; Kennedy, W.E. Jr.; Simmons, M.A.; Soldat, J.K.; Swartzman, B.

    1982-07-01

    The purpose of the work reported here was to evaluate the relevance of biotic transport to the assessment of impacts and licensing of low-level waste disposal sites. Available computer models and their recent applications at low-level waste disposal sites are considered. Biotic transport mechanisms and processes for both terrestrial and aquatic systems are presented with examples from existing waste disposal sites. Following a proposed system for ranking radionuclides by their potential for biotic transport, recommendations for completing Phase I research are presented. To evaluate the long-term importance of biotic transport at low-level waste sites, scenarios for biotic pathways and mechanisms need to be developed. Scenarios should begin with a description of the waste form and should include a description of biotic processes and mechanisms, approximations of the magnitude of materials transported, and a linkage to processes or mechanisms in existing models. Once these scenarios are in place, existing models could be used to evaluate impacts resulting from biotic transport and to assess the relevance to site selection and licensing of low-level waste disposal sites

  16. Understanding specificity in metabolic pathways--structural biology of human nucleotide metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welin, Martin; Nordlund, Pär

    2010-05-21

    Interactions are the foundation of life at the molecular level. In the plethora of activities in the cell, the evolution of enzyme specificity requires the balancing of appropriate substrate affinity with a negative selection, in order to minimize interactions with other potential substrates in the cell. To understand the structural basis for enzyme specificity, the comparison of structural and biochemical data between enzymes within pathways using similar substrates and effectors is valuable. Nucleotide metabolism is one of the largest metabolic pathways in the human cell and is of outstanding therapeutic importance since it activates and catabolises nucleoside based anti-proliferative drugs and serves as a direct target for anti-proliferative drugs. In recent years the structural coverage of the enzymes involved in human nucleotide metabolism has been dramatically improved and is approaching completion. An important factor has been the contribution from the Structural Genomics Consortium (SGC) at Karolinska Institutet, which recently has solved 33 novel structures of enzymes and enzyme domains in human nucleotide metabolism pathways and homologs thereof. In this review we will discuss some of the principles for substrate specificity of enzymes in human nucleotide metabolism illustrated by a selected set of enzyme families where a detailed understanding of the structural determinants for specificity is now emerging. 2010. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  17. Understanding specificity in metabolic pathways-Structural biology of human nucleotide metabolism

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Welin, Martin; Nordlund, Paer

    2010-01-01

    Interactions are the foundation of life at the molecular level. In the plethora of activities in the cell, the evolution of enzyme specificity requires the balancing of appropriate substrate affinity with a negative selection, in order to minimize interactions with other potential substrates in the cell. To understand the structural basis for enzyme specificity, the comparison of structural and biochemical data between enzymes within pathways using similar substrates and effectors is valuable. Nucleotide metabolism is one of the largest metabolic pathways in the human cell and is of outstanding therapeutic importance since it activates and catabolises nucleoside based anti-proliferative drugs and serves as a direct target for anti-proliferative drugs. In recent years the structural coverage of the enzymes involved in human nucleotide metabolism has been dramatically improved and is approaching completion. An important factor has been the contribution from the Structural Genomics Consortium (SGC) at Karolinska Institutet, which recently has solved 33 novel structures of enzymes and enzyme domains in human nucleotide metabolism pathways and homologs thereof. In this review we will discuss some of the principles for substrate specificity of enzymes in human nucleotide metabolism illustrated by a selected set of enzyme families where a detailed understanding of the structural determinants for specificity is now emerging.

  18. A biological pathway linking inflammation and depression: activation of indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christmas DM

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available David M Christmas, JP Potokar, Simon JC DaviesAcademic Unit of Psychiatry, School of Social and Community Medicine, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK A presentation relating to this manuscript was made by Dr David Christmas at the 9th International Meeting on Clinical Pharmacology in Psychiatry (9th IMCPP in Copenhagen, Denmark in September 2010Abstract: This article highlights the evidence linking depression to increased inflammatory drive and explores putative mechanisms for the association by reviewing both preclinical and clinical literature. The enzyme indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase is induced by proinflammatory cytokines and may form a link between immune functioning and altered neurotransmission, which results in depression. Increased indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase activity may cause both tryptophan depletion and increased neurotoxic metabolites of the kynurenine pathway, two alterations which have been hypothesized to cause depression. The tryptophan-kynurenine pathway is comprehensively described with a focus on the evidence linking metabolite alterations to depression. The use of immune-activated groups at high risk of depression have been used to explore these hypotheses; we focus on the studies involving chronic hepatitis C patients receiving interferon-alpha, an immune activating cytokine. Findings from this work have led to novel strategies for the future development of antidepressants including inhibition of indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase, moderating the cytokines which activate it, or addressing other targets in the kynurenine pathway.Keywords: depression, inflammation, indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase, kynurenine, serotonin, tryptophan

  19. Relevance of biotic pathways to the long-term regulation of nuclear waste disposal. Topical report on reference eastern humid low-level sites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McKenzie, D.H.; Cadwell, L.L.; Eberhardt, L.E.; Kennedy, W.E. Jr.; Peloquin, R.A.; Simmons, M.A.

    1983-01-01

    The purpose of the work reported here was to develop an order-of-magnitude estimate for the potential dose to man resulting from biotic transport mechanisms at a humid reference low-level waste site in the eastern US. A description of the reference site is presented that includes the waste inventories, site characteristics and biological communites. Parameter values for biotic transport processes are based on data reported in current literature. Transport and exposure scenarios are developed for assessing biotic transport during 500 years following site closure. Calculations of radionuclide decay and waste container decomposition are made to estimate the quantities available for biotic transport. Doses to man are calculated for the biological transport of radionucludes at the reference site after loss of institutional control. These dose estimates are compared to dose estimates we calculated for the intruder-agricultural scenarios reported in the DEIS for 10 CFR 61 (NRC). Dose to man estimates as a result of cumulative biotic transport are calculated to be of the same order-of-magnitude as the dose resulting from the more commonly evaluated human intrusion scenario. The reported lack of potential importance of biotic transport at low-level waste sites in earlier assessment studies is not confirmed by findings presented in this report. Through biotic transport, radionuclides can be moved to locations where they can enter exposure pathways to man

  20. Stable organic field-effect transistors for continuous and nondestructive sensing of chemical and biologically relevant molecules in aqueous environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yun, Minseong; Sharma, Asha; Fuentes-Hernandez, Canek; Hwang, Do Kyung; Dindar, Amir; Singh, Sanjeev; Choi, Sangmoo; Kippelen, Bernard

    2014-02-12

    The use of organic field-effect transistors (OFETs) as sensors in aqueous media has gained increased attention for environmental monitoring and medical diagnostics. However, stable operation of OFETs in aqueous media is particularly challenging because of electrolytic hydrolysis of water, high ionic conduction through the analyte, and irreversible damage of organic semiconductors when exposed to water. To date, OFET sensors have shown the capability of label-free sensing of various chemical/biological species, but they could only be used once because their operational stability and lifetime while operating in aqueous environments has been poor, and their response times typically slow. Here, we report on OFETs with unprecedented water stability. These OFETs are suitable for the implementation of reusable chemical/biological sensors because they primarily respond to charged species diluted in an aqueous media by rapidly shifting their threshold voltage. These OFET sensors present stable current baselines and saturated signals which are ideal for detection of low concentration of small or large molecules that alter the pH of an aqueous environment. The overall response of these OFET sensors paves the way for the development of continuous chemical/biological nondestructive sensor applications in aqueous media.

  1. Occurrence, pathways and implications of biological production of reactive oxygen species in natural waters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, T.; Hansel, C. M.; Voelker, B. M.; Lamborg, C. H.

    2014-12-01

    Reactive oxygen species (ROS), such as superoxide (O2-) and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) play a critical role in the redox cycling of both toxic (e.g., Hg) and nutrient (e.g., Fe) metals. Despite the discovery of extracellular ROS production in various microbial cultures, including fungi, algae and bacteria, photo-dependent processes are generally considered as the predominant source of ROS in natural waters. Here we show that biological production of ROS is ubiquitous and occurs at a significant rate in freshwater and brackish water environments. Water samples were collected from three freshwater and one brackish water ponds in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, USA, periodically from 2012 to 2014. Production of O2- and H2O2 were measured in dark incubations of natural water using a chemiluminescent and a colorimetric probe, respectively. Rates of biological ROS production were obtained by comparing unfiltered with 0.2-μm filtered samples. The role of biological activity in ROS production was confirmed by the cessation of ROS production upon addition of formaldehyde. In surface water, production rates of O2- ranged from undetectable to 96.0 ± 30.0 nmol L-1 h-1, and production rates of H2O2 varied between 9.9 ± 1.3 nmol L-1 h-1 and 145.6 ± 11.2 nmol L-1 h-1. The maximum production rates of both ROS were observed in mid-summer 2013, which coincides with peak biological activity. ROS production in the water from aphotic zone was greater than in the water from photic zone. Thus, non-light dependent biological processes are likely the major contributors to ROS production in this system. Moreover, O2- production appeared to be enhanced by NADH and inhibited by proteinase-K, suggesting the possible involvement of NADH oxidoreductases in this process. The potential role of different microbial communities in ROS production, and the implications of biological ROS production for mercury speciation will also be discussed.

  2. Reconstruction of biological pathways and metabolic networks from in silico labeled metabolites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hadadi, Noushin; Hafner, Jasmin; Soh, Keng Cher; Hatzimanikatis, Vassily

    2017-01-01

    Reaction atom mappings track the positional changes of all of the atoms between the substrates and the products as they undergo the biochemical transformation. However, information on atom transitions in the context of metabolic pathways is not widely available in the literature. The understanding of metabolic pathways at the atomic level is of great importance as it can deconvolute the overlapping catabolic/anabolic pathways resulting in the observed metabolic phenotype. The automated identification of atom transitions within a metabolic network is a very challenging task since the degree of complexity of metabolic networks dramatically increases when we transit from metabolite-level studies to atom-level studies. Despite being studied extensively in various approaches, the field of atom mapping of metabolic networks is lacking an automated approach, which (i) accounts for the information of reaction mechanism for atom mapping and (ii) is extendable from individual atom-mapped reactions to atom-mapped reaction networks. Hereby, we introduce a computational framework, iAM.NICE (in silico Atom Mapped Network Integrated Computational Explorer), for the systematic atom-level reconstruction of metabolic networks from in silico labelled substrates. iAM.NICE is to our knowledge the first automated atom-mapping algorithm that is based on the underlying enzymatic biotransformation mechanisms, and its application goes beyond individual reactions and it can be used for the reconstruction of atom-mapped metabolic networks. We illustrate the applicability of our method through the reconstruction of atom-mapped reactions of the KEGG database and we provide an example of an atom-level representation of the core metabolic network of E. coli. Copyright © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  3. Effect of Co-Existing Biologically Relevant Molecules and Ions on DNA Photocleavage Caused by Pyrene and its Derivatives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongtao Yu

    2005-04-01

    Full Text Available Inorganic ions, coenzymes, amino acids, and saccharides could co-exist with toxic environmental chemicals, such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs, in the cell. The presence of these co-existing chemicals can modulate the toxicity of the PAHs. One of the genotoxic effects by PAHs is light-induced cleavage, or photocleavage, of DNA. The effect of inorganic ions I-, Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+, Fe3+, Mn2+, Cu2+, and Zn2+ and biological molecules riboflavin, histidine, mannitol, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD, glutathione, and glutamic acid on the DNA photocleavage by pyrene, 1-hydroxypyrene (1-HP, and 1-aminopyrene (1-AP, is studied. The non-transition metal ions Na+, Ca2+, and Mg2+, usually have very little inhibitory effects, while the transition metal ions Fe3+, Cu2+, and Zn2+ enhance, Mn2+ inhibits the DNA photocleavage. The effect by biological molecules is complex, depending on the photochemical reaction mechanisms of the compounds tested (1-AP, 1-HP and pyrene and on the chemical nature of the added biological molecules. Riboflavin, histidine, and mannitol enhance DNA photocleavage by all three compounds, except that mannitol has no effect on the photocleavage of DNA by pyrene. Glutathione inhibits the DNA photocleavage by 1-AP and 1-HP, but has no effect on that by pyrene. NAD enhances the DNA photocleavage by 1-AP, but has no effect on that by 1-HP and pyrene. Glutamic acid enhances the DNA photocleavage by 1-AP and pyrene, but inhibits that by 1-HP. These results show that the co-existing chemicals may have a profound effect on the toxicity of PAHs, or possibly on the toxicity of many other chemicals. Therefore, if one studies the toxic effects of PAHs or other toxic chemicals, the effect of the co-existing chemicals or ions needs to be considered.

  4. SysBioCube: A Data Warehouse and Integrative Data Analysis Platform Facilitating Systems Biology Studies of Disorders of Military Relevance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chowbina, Sudhir; Hammamieh, Rasha; Kumar, Raina; Chakraborty, Nabarun; Yang, Ruoting; Mudunuri, Uma; Jett, Marti; Palma, Joseph M; Stephens, Robert

    2013-01-01

    SysBioCube is an integrated data warehouse and analysis platform for experimental data relating to diseases of military relevance developed for the US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command Systems Biology Enterprise (SBE). It brings together, under a single database environment, pathophysio-, psychological, molecular and biochemical data from mouse models of post-traumatic stress disorder and (pre-) clinical data from human PTSD patients.. SysBioCube will organize, centralize and normalize this data and provide an access portal for subsequent analysis to the SBE. It provides new or expanded browsing, querying and visualization to provide better understanding of the systems biology of PTSD, all brought about through the integrated environment. We employ Oracle database technology to store the data using an integrated hierarchical database schema design. The web interface provides researchers with systematic information and option to interrogate the profiles of pan-omics component across different data types, experimental designs and other covariates.

  5. An efficient biological pathway layout algorithm combining grid-layout and spring embedder for complicated cellular location information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kojima, Kaname; Nagasaki, Masao; Miyano, Satoru

    2010-06-18

    Graph drawing is one of the important techniques for understanding biological regulations in a cell or among cells at the pathway level. Among many available layout algorithms, the spring embedder algorithm is widely used not only for pathway drawing but also for circuit placement and www visualization and so on because of the harmonized appearance of its results. For pathway drawing, location information is essential for its comprehension. However, complex shapes need to be taken into account when torus-shaped location information such as nuclear inner membrane, nuclear outer membrane, and plasma membrane is considered. Unfortunately, the spring embedder algorithm cannot easily handle such information. In addition, crossings between edges and nodes are usually not considered explicitly. We proposed a new grid-layout algorithm based on the spring embedder algorithm that can handle location information and provide layouts with harmonized appearance. In grid-layout algorithms, the mapping of nodes to grid points that minimizes a cost function is searched. By imposing positional constraints on grid points, location information including complex shapes can be easily considered. Our layout algorithm includes the spring embedder cost as a component of the cost function. We further extend the layout algorithm to enable dynamic update of the positions and sizes of compartments at each step. The new spring embedder-based grid-layout algorithm and a spring embedder algorithm are applied to three biological pathways; endothelial cell model, Fas-induced apoptosis model, and C. elegans cell fate simulation model. From the positional constraints, all the results of our algorithm satisfy location information, and hence, more comprehensible layouts are obtained as compared to the spring embedder algorithm. From the comparison of the number of crossings, the results of the grid-layout-based algorithm tend to contain more crossings than those of the spring embedder algorithm due to

  6. Evaluation of some procedures relevant to the determination of trace elemental components in biological materials by destructive neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Berry, D.L.

    1979-01-01

    The development of a simplified procedure for the analysis of biological materials by destructive neutron activation analysis (DNAA) is described. The sample manipulations preceding gamma ray assay were investigated as five specific stages of processing: (1) pre-irradiation treatment; (2) sample irradiation; (3) removal of the organic matrix; (4) removal of interfering radioactivities; and (5) concentration and separation of analyte activities. Each stage was evaluated with respect to susceptibility to sample contamination, loss of trace elemental components, and compatibility with other operations in the overall DNAA procedures. A complete DNAA procedure was proposed and evaluated for the analysis of standard bovine liver and blood samples. The DNAA system was effective for the determination of As, Cu, Fe, Hg, Mo, Rb, Sb, Se, and Zn without yield determinations and with a minimum turn-around time of approximately 3 days

  7. Evaluation of some procedures relevant to the determination of trace elemental components in biological materials by destructive neutron activation analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Berry, D.L.

    1979-01-01

    The development of a simplified procedure for the analysis of biological materials by destructive neutron activation analysis (DNAA) is described. The sample manipulations preceding gamma ray assay were investigated as five specific stages of processing: (1) pre-irradiation treatment; (2) sample irradiation; (3) removal of the organic matrix; (4) removal of interfering radioactivities; and (5) concentration and separation of analyte activities. Each stage was evaluated with respect to susceptibility to sample contamination, loss of trace elemental components, and compatibility with other operations in the overall DNAA procedures. A complete DNAA procedure was proposed and evaluated for the analysis of standard bovine liver and blood samples. The DNAA system was effective for the determination of As, Cu, Fe, Hg, Mo, Rb, Sb, Se, and Zn without yield determinations and with a minimum turn-around time of approximately 3 days.

  8. Convergence of regenerative medicine and synthetic biology to develop standardized and validated models of human diseases with clinical relevance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hutmacher, Dietmar Werner; Holzapfel, Boris Michael; De-Juan-Pardo, Elena Maria; Pereira, Brooke Anne; Ellem, Stuart John; Loessner, Daniela; Risbridger, Gail Petuna

    2015-12-01

    In order to progress beyond currently available medical devices and implants, the concept of tissue engineering has moved into the centre of biomedical research worldwide. The aim of this approach is not to replace damaged tissue with an implant or device but rather to prompt the patient's own tissue to enact a regenerative response by using a tissue-engineered construct to assemble new functional and healthy tissue. More recently, it has been suggested that the combination of Synthetic Biology and translational tissue-engineering techniques could enhance the field of personalized medicine, not only from a regenerative medicine perspective, but also to provide frontier technologies for building and transforming the research landscape in the field of in vitro and in vivo disease models. Crown Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Interaction of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs with membranes: in vitro assessment and relevance for their biological actions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira-Leite, Catarina; Nunes, Cláudia; Reis, Salette

    2013-10-01

    Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are among the most commonly used drugs in the world due to their anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antipyretic properties. Nevertheless, the consumption of these drugs is still associated with the occurrence of a wide spectrum of adverse effects. Regarding the major role of membranes in cellular events, the hypothesis that the biological actions of NSAIDs may be related to their effect at the membrane level has triggered the in vitro assessment of NSAIDs-membrane interactions. The use of membrane mimetic models, cell cultures, a wide range of experimental techniques and molecular dynamics simulations has been providing significant information about drugs partition and location within membranes and also about their effect on diverse membrane properties. These studies have indeed been providing evidences that the effect of NSAIDs at membrane level may be an additional mechanism of action and toxicity of NSAIDs. In fact, the pharmacokinetic properties of NSAIDs are closely related to the ability of these drugs to interact and overcome biological membranes. Moreover, the therapeutic actions of NSAIDs may also result from the indirect inhibition of cyclooxygenase due to the disturbing effect of NSAIDs on membrane properties. Furthermore, increasing evidences suggest that the disordering effects of these drugs on membranes may be in the basis of the NSAIDs-induced toxicity in diverse organ systems. Overall, the study of NSAIDs-membrane interactions has proved to be not only important for the better understanding of their pharmacological actions, but also for the rational development of new approaches to overcome NSAIDs adverse effects. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Biological responses of two marine organisms of ecological relevance to on-going ocean acidification and global warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomiero, A; Bellerby, R G J; Manca Zeichen, M; Babbini, L; Viarengo, A

    2018-05-01

    Recently, there has been a growing concern that climate change may rapidly and extensively alter global ecosystems with unknown consequences for terrestrial and aquatic life. While considerable emphasis has been placed on terrestrial ecology consequences, aquatic environments have received relatively little attention. Limited knowledge is available on the biological effects of increments of seawater temperature and pH decrements on key ecological species, i.e., primary producers and/or organisms representative of the basis of the trophic web. In the present study, we addressed the biological effects of global warming and ocean acidification on two model organisms, the microbenthic marine ciliate Euplotes crassus and the green alga Dunaliella tertiocleta using a suite of high level ecological endpoint tests and sub-lethal stress measures. Organisms were exposed to combinations of pH and temperature (TR1: 7.9 [pH], 25.5 °C and TR2: 7.8 [pH], 27,0 °C) simulating two possible environmental scenarios predicted to occur in the habitats of the selected species before the end of this century. The outcomes of the present study showed that the tested scenarios did not induce a significant increment of mortality on protozoa. Under the most severe exposure conditions, sub-lethal stress indices show that pH homeostatic mechanisms have energetic costs that divert energy from essential cellular processes and functions. The marine protozoan exhibited significant impairment of the lysosomal compartment and early signs of oxidative stress under these conditions. Similarly, significant impairment of photosynthetic efficiency and an increment in lipid peroxidation were observed in the autotroph model organism held under the most extreme exposure condition tested. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Biological Production of a Hydrocarbon Fuel Intermediate Polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) from a Process Relevant Lignocellulosic Derived Sugar (Poster)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, W.; Mittal, A.; Mohagheghi, A.; Johnson, D. K.

    2014-04-01

    PHAs are synthesized by many microorganisms to serve as intracellular carbon storage molecules. In some bacterial strains, PHB can account for up to 80% of cell mass. In addition to its application in the packaging sector, PHB also has great potential as an intermediate in the production of hydrocarbon fuels. PHB can be thermally depolymerized and decarboxylated to propene which can be upgraded to hydrocarbon fuels via commercial oligomerization technologies. Cupriavidus necator is the microorganism that has been most extensively studied and used for PHB production on an industrial scale; However the substrates used for producing PHB are mainly fructose, glucose, sucrose, fatty acids, glycerol, etc., which are expensive. In this study, we demonstrate production of PHB from a process relevant lignocellulosic derived sugar stream, i.e., saccharified slurry from pretreated corn stover. The strain was first investigated in shake flasks for its ability to utilize glucose, xylose and acetate. In addition, the strain was also grown on pretreated lignocellulose hydrolyzate slurry and evaluated in terms of cell growth, sugar utilization, PHB accumulation, etc. The mechanism of inhibition in the toxic hydrolysate generated by the pretreatment and saccharification process of biomass, was also studied.

  12. Different pathways but same result? Comparing chemistry and biological effects of burned and decomposed litter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazzoleni, Stefano; Bonanomi, Giuliano; Incerti, Guido; El-Gawad, Ahmed M. Abd; Sarker, Tushar Chandra; Cesarano, Gaspare; Saulino, Luigi; Saracino, Antonio; Castro Rego, Francisco

    2017-04-01

    Litter burning and biological decomposition are oxidative processes co-occurring in many terrestrial ecosystems, producing organic matter with different chemical properties and differently affecting plant growth and soil microbial activity. Here, we tested the chemical convergence hypothesis (i.e. materials with different initial chemistry tend to converge towards a common profile, with similar biological effects, as the oxidative process advances) for burning and decomposition. We compared the molecular composition of 63 organic materials - 7 litter types either fresh, decomposed for 30, 90, 180 days, or heated at 100, 200, 300, 400, 500 °C - as assessed by 13C NMR. We used litter water extracts (5% dw) as treatments in bioassays on plant (Lepidium sativum) and fungal (Aspergillus niger) growth, and a washed quartz sand amended with litter materials (0.5 % dw) to assess heterotrophic respiration by CO2 flux chamber. We observed different molecular variations for materials either burning (i.e. a sharp increase of aromatic C and a decrease of most other fractions above 200 °C) or decomposing (i.e. early increase of alkyl, methoxyl and N-alkyl C and decrease of O-alkyl and di-O-alkyl C fractions). Soil respiration and fungal growth progressively decreased with litter age and temperature. Plant growth underwent an inhibitory effect by untreated litter, more and less rapidly released over decomposing and burning materials, respectively. Correlation analysis between NMR and bioassay data showed that opposite responses for soil respiration and fungi, compared to plants, are related to essentially the same C molecular types. Our findings suggest a functional convergence of decomposed and burnt organic substrates, emerging from the balance between the bioavailability of labile C sources and the presence of recalcitrant and pyrogenic compounds, oppositely affecting different trophic levels.

  13. Pharmacological, Physiochemical, and Drug-Relevant Biological Properties of Short Chain Fatty Acid Hexosamine Analogues Used in Metabolic Glycoengineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saeui, Christopher T; Liu, Lingshu; Urias, Esteban; Morrissette-McAlmon, Justin; Bhattacharya, Rahul; Yarema, Kevin J

    2018-03-05

    In this study, we catalog structure activity relationships (SAR) of several short chain fatty acid (SCFA)-modified hexosamine analogues used in metabolic glycoengineering (MGE) by comparing in silico and experimental measurements of physiochemical properties important in drug design. We then describe the impact of these compounds on selected biological parameters that influence the pharmacological properties and safety of drug candidates by monitoring P-glycoprotein (Pgp) efflux, inhibition of cytochrome P450 3A4 (CYP3A4), hERG channel inhibition, and cardiomyocyte cytotoxicity. These parameters are influenced by length of the SCFAs (e.g., acetate vs n-butyrate), which are added to MGE analogues to increase the efficiency of cellular uptake, the regioisomeric arrangement of the SCFAs on the core sugar, the structure of the core sugar itself, and by the type of N-acyl modification (e.g., N-acetyl vs N-azido). By cataloging the influence of these SAR on pharmacological properties of MGE analogues, this study outlines design considerations for tuning the pharmacological, physiochemical, and the toxicological parameters of this emerging class of small molecule drug candidates.

  14. The interaction of nicotine withdrawal and panic disorder in the prediction of panic-relevant responding to a biological challenge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leyro, Teresa M; Zvolensky, Michael J

    2013-03-01

    The current investigation evaluated nicotine withdrawal symptoms elicited by 12 hours of smoking deprivation on anxious and fearful responding to bodily sensations among daily smokers with and without panic disorder (PD). It was hypothesized that smokers with PD who were experiencing greater levels of nicotine withdrawal would experience the greatest levels of fearful responding to, and delayed recovery from, a 10% carbon dioxide-enriched air (CO₂) biological challenge procedure. Participants were 58 adults who reported smoking 19.72 cigarettes daily (SD = 7.99). Results indicated that nicotine withdrawal and PD status interacted to predict greater postchallenge panic attack symptoms. Also, individuals with PD initially evidenced a quicker decrease in subjective anxiety following the challenge, but their rate of recovery decelerated over time as compared to those without PD. There was, however, no significant interaction for change in subjective anxiety pre- to postchallenge. Results are discussed in relation to the role of nicotine withdrawal in anxious and fearful responding for smokers with PD. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved).

  15. Fractal structures of single-walled carbon nanotubes in biologically relevant conditions: role of chirality vs. media conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Iftheker A; Aich, Nirupam; Afrooz, A R M Nabiul; Flora, Joseph R V; Schierz, P Ariette; Ferguson, P Lee; Sabo-Attwood, Tara; Saleh, Navid B

    2013-11-01

    Aggregate structure of covalently functionalized chiral specific semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) was systematically studied employing static light scattering (SLS). Fractal dimensions (Df) of two specific chirality SWNTs-SG65 and SG76 with (6, 5) and (7, 6) chiral enrichments-were measured under four biological exposure media conditions, namely: Dulbecco's Modified Eagle Medium (DMEM), Minimum Essential Medium (MEM), Roswell Park Memorial Institute (RPMI) 1640 medium, and 0.9% saline solution. The SWNTs exhibited chiral dependence on Df with SG65 showing more fractal or loosely bound aggregate structures, i.e., lower Df values (range of 2.24±0.03 to 2.64±0.05), compared to the SG76 sample (range of 2.58±0.13 to 2.90±0.08). All the Df values reported are highly reproducible, measured from multiple SLS runs and estimated with 'random block-effects' statistical analysis that yielded all p values to be fractal aggregates. Moreover, presence of fetal bovine serum (FBS) and bovine serum albumin (BSA), used to mimic the in vitro cell culture condition, reduced the Df values, i.e., created more fractal structures. Steric hindrance to aggregation was identified as the key mechanism for creating the fractal structures. Also, increase in FBS concentration from 1% to 10% resulted in increasingly lower Df values. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  16. [Preneoplasias of ovarian carcinoma: biological and clinical aspects of different pathways of tumorigenesis].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staebler, A

    2011-11-01

    Ovarian carcinomas consist of a heterogeneous group of malignant epithelial neoplasms with specific pathogenic mechanisms. This review provides a brief introduction to the different pathways of tumor progression and the associated molecular changes. However, the main focus will be on two areas with major paradigm shifting developments in recent years. Mutational analysis of ovarian clear cell carcinomas, endometrioid carcinomas and endometriotic lesions identified mutations in the ARID1A gene as common and early genetic changes in carcinomas with associated endometriosis and in atypical endometriosis itself. Extensive pathological work-up of the fallopian tubes of BRCA1/2 mutation carriers have demonstrated the existence of serous tubal intraepithelial carcinomas (STIC). Further studies showed that this lesion can also be found in 50-60% of patients with serous ovarian carcinomas without BRCA1/2 germline mutations. Pre-precursors which share the p53 mutations with STICs but proliferate very little are called p53-signatures and provide conclusive evidence that STICs develop in the fallopian tubes.

  17. Bridging from Cells to Cognition in Autism Pathophysiology: Biological Pathways to Defective Brain Function and Plasticity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anderson, Matthew; Hooker, Brian S.; Herbert, Martha

    2008-01-01

    We review evidence to support the model that autism may begin when a maternal environmental, infectious, or autoantibody insult causes inflammation which increases reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in the fetus, leading to fetal DNA damage (nuclear and mitochondrial), and that these inflammatory and oxidative stressors persist beyond early development (with potential further exacerbations), producing ongoing functional consequences. In organs with a high metabolic demand such as the central nervous system, the continued use of mitochondria with DNA damage may generate additional ROS which will activate the innate immune system leading to more ROS production. Such a mechanism would self-sustain and possibly progressively worsen. The mitochondrial dysfunction and altered redox signal transduction pathways found in autism would conspire to activate both astroglia and microglia. These activated cells can then initiate a broad-spectrum proinflammatory gene response. Neurons may have acquired receptors for these inflammatory signals to inhibit neuronal signaling as a protection from excitotoxic damage during various pathologic insults (e.g., infection). In autism, over-zealous neuroinflammatory responses could not only influence neural developmental processes, but may more significantly impair neural signaling involved in cognition in an ongoing fashion. This model makes specific predictions in patients and experimental animal models and suggests a number of targets sites of intervention. Our model of potentially reversible pathophysiological mechanisms in autism motivates our hope that effective therapies may soon appear on the horizon.

  18. Biological pathways and chemical behavior of plutonium and other actinides in the environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dahlman, R.C.; Bondietti, E.A.; Eyman, L.D.

    1976-01-01

    The principal long-lived actinide elements that may enter the environment from either U or Pu fuel cycles are Pu, Am, Cm, and Np. Approximately 25% of the alpha activity estimated to be released to the atmosphere from the LMFBR fuel cycle will be contributed by 241 Am, 242 Cm, and 244 Cm. The balance of the alpha activity will come from Pu isotopes. Activities of 242 Cm, 244 Cm, 241 Am, 243 Am, and 237 Np in waste may exceed concentrations of Pu isotopes in waste after various periods of decay. Thorium and uranium isotopes may also be released by operations of the thorium fuel cycle. Environmental actinides are discussed under the following headings: sources of man-made actinide elements; pathways of exposure; environmental chemistry of actinides; uptake of actinides by plants; distribution of actinides in components of White Oak Lake; entry of actinides into terrestrial food chains; relationship between chemical behavior and uptake of actinides by organisms; and behavior of Pu in freshwater and marine food chains

  19. Relevance of biotic pathways to the long-term regulation of nuclear-waste disposal. Topical report on reference western arid low-level sites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McKenzie, D.H.; Cadwell, L.L.; Eberhardt, L.E.; Kennedy, W.E. Jr.; Peloquin, R.A.; Simmons, M.A.

    1982-10-01

    The purpose of the work reported here was to develop an order of magnitude estimate for the potential dose to man resulting from biotic transport mechanisms at a reference western arid low-level waste site. A description of the reference site is presented that includes the waste inventories, site characteristics and biological communities. Parameter values for biotic transport processes are based on data reported in current literature. Transport and exposure scenarios are developed for assessing biotic transport during 100 years following site closure. Calculations of radionuclide decay and waste container decomposition are made to estimate the quantities available for biotic transport. Dose to a man occupying the reference site following the 100 years of biotic transport are calculated. These dose estimates are compared to dose estimates for the intruder-agricultural scenario reported in the DEIS for 10 CFR 61 (NRC). Dose to man estimates as a result of biotic transport are estimated to be of the same order of magnitude as the dose resulting from the more commonly evaluated human intrusion scenario. The reported lack of potential importance of biotic transport at low-level waste sites in earlier assessment studies is not confirmed by the findings presented in this report. These results indicate that biotic transport has the potential to influence low-level waste site performance. Through biotic transport, radionuclides may be moved to locations where they can enter exposure pathways to man

  20. Airway gene expression in COPD is dynamic with inhaled corticosteroid treatment and reflects biological pathways associated with disease activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van den Berge, Maarten; Steiling, Katrina; Timens, Wim; Hiemstra, Pieter S; Sterk, Peter J; Heijink, Irene H; Liu, Gang; Alekseyev, Yuriy O; Lenburg, Marc E; Spira, Avrum; Postma, Dirkje S

    2014-01-01

    A core feature of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is the accelerated decline in forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1). The recent Groningen and Leiden Universities study of Corticosteroids in Obstructive Lung Disease (GLUCOLD) study suggested that particular phenotypes of COPD benefit from fluticasone±salmeterol by reducing the rate of FEV1 decline, yet the underlying mechanisms are unknown. Whole-genome gene expression profiling using the Affymetrix Gene ST array (V.1.0) was performed on 221 bronchial biopsies available from 89 COPD patients at baseline and after 6 and 30 months of fluticasone±salmeterol and placebo treatment in GLUCOLD. Linear mixed effects modelling revealed that the expression of 138 genes decreased, whereas the expression of 140 genes significantly upregulated after both 6 and 30 months of treatment with fluticasone±salmeterol versus placebo. A more pronounced treatment-induced change in the expression of 50 and 55 of these 278 genes was associated with a lower rate of decline in FEV1 and Saint George Respiratory Questionnaire, respectively. Genes decreasing with treatment were involved in pathways related to cell cycle, oxidative phosphorylation, epithelial cell signalling, p53 signalling and T cell signalling. Genes increasing with treatment were involved in pathways related to focal adhesion, gap junction and extracellular matrix deposition. Finally, the fluticasone-induced gene expression changes were enriched among genes that change in the airway epithelium in smokers with versus without COPD in an independent data set. The present study suggests that gene expression in biological pathways of COPD is dynamic with treatment and reflects disease activity. This study opens the gate to targeted and molecular phenotype-driven therapy of COPD.

  1. Time-resolved and steady-state studies of biologically and chemically relevant systems using laser, absorption, and fluorescence spectroscopy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barnes, Charles Ashley [Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA (United States)

    2014-12-20

    In Chapter 2 several experimental and data analysis methods used in this thesis are described. In Chapter 3 steady-state fluorescence spectroscopy was used to determine the concentration of the efflux pump inhibitors (EPIs), pheophorbide a and pyropheophorbide a, in the feces of animals and it was found that their levels far exceed those reported to be inhibitory to efflux pumps. In Chapter 4 the solvation dynamics of 6-Propionyl-2-(N,Ndimethyl) aminonaphthalene (PRODAN) was studied in reverse micelles. The two fluorescent states of PRODAN solvate on different time scales and as such care must be exercised in solvation dynamic studies involving it and its analogs. In Chapter 5 we studied the experimental and theoretical solvation dynamics of coumarin 153 (C153) in wild-type (WT) and modified myoglobins. Based on the nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and time-resolved fluorescence studies, we have concluded that it is important to thoroughly characterize the structure of a protein and probe system before comparing the theoretical and experimental results. In Chapter 6 the photophysical and spectral properties of a derivative of the medically relevant compound curcumin called cyclocurcumin was studied. Based on NMR, fluorescence, and absorption studies, the ground- and excited-states of cyclocurcumin are complicated by the existence of multiple structural isomers. In Chapter 7 the hydrolysis of cellulose by a pure form of cellulase in an ionic liquid, HEMA, and its aqueous mixtures at various temperatures were studied with the goal of increasing the cellulose to glucose conversion for biofuel production. It was found that HEMA imparts an additional stability to cellulase and can allow for faster conversion of cellulose to glucose using a pre-treatment step in comparison to only buffer.

  2. Seven-day human biological rhythms: An expedition in search of their origin, synchronization, functional advantage, adaptive value and clinical relevance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reinberg, Alain E; Dejardin, Laurence; Smolensky, Michael H; Touitou, Yvan

    2017-01-01

    This fact-finding expedition explores the perspectives and knowledge of the origin and functional relevance of the 7 d domain of the biological time structure, with special reference to human beings. These biological rhythms are displayed at various levels of organization in diverse species - from the unicellular sea algae of Acetabularia and Goniaulax to plants, insects, fish, birds and mammals, including man - under natural as well as artificial, i.e. constant, environmental conditions. Nonetheless, very little is known about their derivation, functional advantage, adaptive value, synchronization and potential clinical relevance. About 7 d cosmic cycles are seemingly too weak, and the 6 d work/1 d rest week commanded from G-d through the Laws of Mosses to the Hebrews is too recent an event to be the origin in humans. Moreover, human and insect studies conducted under controlled constant conditions devoid of environmental, social and other time cues report the persistence of 7 d rhythms, but with a slightly different (free-running) period (τ), indicating their source is endogenous. Yet, a series of human and laboratory rodent studies reveal certain mainly non-cyclic exogenous events can trigger 7 d rhythm-like phenomena. However, it is unknown whether such triggers unmask, amplify and/or synchronize previous non-overtly expressed oscillations. Circadian (~24 h), circa-monthly (~30 d) and circannual (~1 y) rhythms are viewed as genetically based features of life forms that during evolution conferred significant functional advantage to individual organisms and survival value to species. No such advantages are apparent for endogenous 7 d rhythms, raising several questions: What is the significance of the 7 d activity/rest cycle, i.e. week, storied in the Book of Genesis and adopted by the Hebrews and thereafter the residents of nearby Mediterranean countries and ultimately the world? Why do humans require 1 d off per 7 d span? Do 7 d rhythms bestow functional

  3. Molecular profiling reveals biologically discrete subsets and pathways of progression in diffuse glioma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceccarelli, Michele; Barthel, Floris P.; Malta, Tathiane M.; Sabedot, Thais S.; Salama, Sofie R.; Murray, Bradley A.; Morozova, Olena; Newton, Yulia; Radenbaugh, Amie; Pagnotta, Stefano M.; Anjum, Samreen; Wang, Jiguang; Manyam, Ganiraju; Zoppoli, Pietro; Ling, Shiyung; Rao, Arjun A.; Grifford, Mia; Cherniack, Andrew D.; Zhang, Hailei; Poisson, Laila; Carlotti, Carlos Gilberto; Pretti da Cunha Tirapelli, Daniela; Rao, Arvind; Mikkelsen, Tom; Lau, Ching C.; Yung, W.K. Alfred; Rabadan, Raul; Huse, Jason; Brat, Daniel J.; Lehman, Norman L.; Barnholtz-Sloan, Jill S.; Zheng, Siyuan; Hess, Kenneth; Rao, Ganesh; Meyerson, Matthew; Beroukhim, Rameen; Cooper, Lee; Akbani, Rehan; Wrensch, Margaret; Haussler, David; Aldape, Kenneth D.; Laird, Peter W.; Gutmann, David H.; Noushmehr, Houtan; Iavarone, Antonio; Verhaak, Roel G.W.

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Therapy development for adult diffuse glioma is hindered by incomplete knowledge of somatic glioma driving alterations and suboptimal disease classification. We defined the complete set of genes associated with 1,122 diffuse grade II-III-IV gliomas from The Cancer Genome Atlas and used molecular profiles to improve disease classification, identify molecular correlations, and provide insights into the progression from low- to high-grade disease. Whole genome sequencing data analysis determined that ATRX but not TERT promoter mutations are associated with increased telomere length. Recent advances in glioma classification based on IDH mutation and 1p/19q co-deletion status were recapitulated through analysis of DNA methylation profiles, which identified clinically relevant molecular subsets. A subtype of IDH-mutant glioma was associated with DNA demethylation and poor outcome; a group of IDH-wildtype diffuse glioma showed molecular similarity to pilocytic astrocytoma and relatively favorable survival. Understanding of cohesive disease groups may aid improved clinical outcomes. PMID:26824661

  4. NeAT: a toolbox for the analysis of biological networks, clusters, classes and pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brohée, Sylvain; Faust, Karoline; Lima-Mendez, Gipsi; Sand, Olivier; Janky, Rekin's; Vanderstocken, Gilles; Deville, Yves; van Helden, Jacques

    2008-01-01

    The network analysis tools (NeAT) (http://rsat.ulb.ac.be/neat/) provide a user-friendly web access to a collection of modular tools for the analysis of networks (graphs) and clusters (e.g. microarray clusters, functional classes, etc.). A first set of tools supports basic operations on graphs (comparison between two graphs, neighborhood of a set of input nodes, path finding and graph randomization). Another set of programs makes the connection between networks and clusters (graph-based clustering, cliques discovery and mapping of clusters onto a network). The toolbox also includes programs for detecting significant intersections between clusters/classes (e.g. clusters of co-expression versus functional classes of genes). NeAT are designed to cope with large datasets and provide a flexible toolbox for analyzing biological networks stored in various databases (protein interactions, regulation and metabolism) or obtained from high-throughput experiments (two-hybrid, mass-spectrometry and microarrays). The web interface interconnects the programs in predefined analysis flows, enabling to address a series of questions about networks of interest. Each tool can also be used separately by entering custom data for a specific analysis. NeAT can also be used as web services (SOAP/WSDL interface), in order to design programmatic workflows and integrate them with other available resources. PMID:18524799

  5. Brain drains: new insights into brain clearance pathways from lymphatic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bower, Neil I; Hogan, Benjamin M

    2018-04-02

    The lymphatic vasculature act as the drainage system for most of our tissues and organs, clearing interstitial fluid and waste and returning them to the blood circulation. This is not the case for the central nervous system (CNS), which is devoid of parenchymal lymphatic vessels. Nevertheless, the brain is responsible for 25% of the body's metabolism and only compromises 2% of the body's mass. This high metabolic load requires an efficient system to remove waste products and maintain homeostasis. Well-described mechanisms of waste clearance include phagocytic immune cell functions as well as perivascular fluid flow; however, the need for active drainage of waste from the brain is becoming increasingly appreciated. Recent developments in lymphatic vascular biology challenge the proposition that the brain lacks lymphatic drainage or an equivalent. In this review, we describe the roles of the glymphatic system (a key drainage mechanism in the absence of lymphatics), the recently characterized meningeal lymphatic vessels, and explore an enigmatic cell population found in zebrafish called mural lymphatic endothelial cells. These systems may play important individual and collective roles in draining and clearing wastes from the brain.

  6. Why are well-educated Muscovites more likely to survive? Understanding the biological pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd, Megan A.; Shkolnikov, Vladimir M.; Goldman, Noreen

    2016-01-01

    There are large socioeconomic disparities in adult mortality in Russia, although the biological mechanisms are not well understood. With data from the study of Stress, Aging, and Health in Russia (SAHR), we use Gompertz hazard models to assess the relationship between educational attainment and mortality among older adults in Moscow and to evaluate biomarkers associated with inflammation, neuroendocrine function, heart rate variability, and clinical cardiovascular and metabolic risk as potential mediators of that relationship. We do this by assessing the extent to which the addition of biomarker variables into hazard models of mortality attenuates the association between educational attainment and mortality. We find that an additional year of education is associated with about 5% lower risk of age-specific all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. Inflammation biomarkers are best able to account for this relationship, explaining 25% of the education-all-cause mortality association, and 35% of the education-cardiovascular mortality association. Clinical markers perform next best, accounting for 13% and 23% of the relationship between education and all-cause and cardiovascular mortality, respectively. Although heart rate biomarkers are strongly associated with subsequent mortality, they explain very little of the education-mortality link. Neuroendocrine biomarkers fail to account for any portion of the link. These findings suggest that inflammation may be important for understanding mortality disparities by socioeconomic status. PMID:27085072

  7. Combinatorial biosynthesis of cyclic lipopeptide antibiotics: a model for synthetic biology to accelerate the evolution of secondary metabolite biosynthetic pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baltz, Richard H

    2014-10-17

    Nonribosomal peptide synthetases (NRPSs) are giant multi-enzymes that carry out sequencial assembly line couplings of amino acids to generate linear or cyclic peptides. NRPSs are composed of repeating enzyme domains with modular organization to activate and couple specific amino acids in a particular order. From a synthetic biology perspective, they can be considered as peptide assembly machines composed of devices to couple fatty acids to l-amino acids, l-amino acids to l-amino acids, and d-amino acids to l-amino acids. The coupling devices are composed of specific parts that contain two or more enzyme domains that can be exchanged combinatorially to generate novel peptide assembly machines to produce novel peptides. The potent lipopeptide antibiotics daptomycin and A54145E have identical cyclic depsipeptide ring structures and stereochemistry but have divergent amino acid sequences. As their biosynthetic gene clusters are derived from an ancient ancestral lipopetide pathway, these lipopeptides provided an attractive model to develop combinatorial biosynthesis to generate antibiotics superior to daptomycin. These studies on combinatorial biosynthesis have helped generate guidelines for the successful assembly of NRPS parts and devices that can be used to generate novel lipopeptide structures and have established a basis for future synthetic biology studies to further develop combinatorial biosynthesis as a robust approach to natural product drug discovery.

  8. Whole genome association study identifies regions of the bovine genome and biological pathways involved in carcass trait performance in Holstein-Friesian cattle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doran, Anthony G; Berry, Donagh P; Creevey, Christopher J

    2014-10-01

    Four traits related to carcass performance have been identified as economically important in beef production: carcass weight, carcass fat, carcass conformation of progeny and cull cow carcass weight. Although Holstein-Friesian cattle are primarily utilized for milk production, they are also an important source of meat for beef production and export. Because of this, there is great interest in understanding the underlying genomic structure influencing these traits. Several genome-wide association studies have identified regions of the bovine genome associated with growth or carcass traits, however, little is known about the mechanisms or underlying biological pathways involved. This study aims to detect regions of the bovine genome associated with carcass performance traits (employing a panel of 54,001 SNPs) using measures of genetic merit (as predicted transmitting abilities) for 5,705 Irish Holstein-Friesian animals. Candidate genes and biological pathways were then identified for each trait under investigation. Following adjustment for false discovery (q-value 0.5) with at least one of the four traits. In total, 557 unique bovine genes, which mapped to 426 human orthologs, were within 500kbs of QTL found associated with a trait using the Bayesian approach. Using this information, 24 significantly over-represented pathways were identified across all traits. The most significantly over-represented biological pathway was the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) signaling pathway. A large number of genomic regions putatively associated with bovine carcass traits were detected using two different statistical approaches. Notably, several significant associations were detected in close proximity to genes with a known role in animal growth such as glucagon and leptin. Several biological pathways, including PPAR signaling, were shown to be involved in various aspects of bovine carcass performance. These core genes and biological processes may form the

  9. Application of adverse outcome pathways (AOPs) in human health and ecotoxicology capturing divergent consequences of conserved molecular initiating events via AOP networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    The adverse outcome pathway (AOP) framework was developed to help organize and disseminate existing knowledge concerning the means through which specific perturbations of biological pathways can lead to adverse outcomes considered relevant to risk-based regulatory decision-making...

  10. Application of Adverse Outcome Pathways (AOPs) in Human Health and Ecotoxicology Capturing Divergent Consequences of Conserved Molecular Initiating Events via AOP Networks (Presentation)

    Science.gov (United States)

    The adverse outcome pathway (AOP) framework was developed to help organize and disseminate existing knowledge concerning the means through which specific perturbations of biological pathways can lead to adverse outcomes considered relevant to risk-based regulatory decision-making...

  11. Profiling conserved biological pathways in Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disorder (ADPKD) to elucidate key transcriptomic alterations regulating cystogenesis: A cross-species meta-analysis approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chatterjee, Shatakshee; Verma, Srikant Prasad; Pandey, Priyanka

    2017-09-05

    Initiation and progression of fluid filled cysts mark Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease (ADPKD). Thus, improved therapeutics targeting cystogenesis remains a constant challenge. Microarray studies in single ADPKD animal models species with limited sample sizes tend to provide scattered views on underlying ADPKD pathogenesis. Thus we aim to perform a cross species meta-analysis to profile conserved biological pathways that might be key targets for therapy. Nine ADPKD microarray datasets on rat, mice and human fulfilled our study criteria and were chosen. Intra-species combined analysis was performed after considering removal of batch effect. Significantly enriched GO biological processes and KEGG pathways were computed and their overlap was observed. For the conserved pathways, biological modules and gene regulatory networks were observed. Additionally, Gene Set Enrichment Analysis (GSEA) using Molecular Signature Database (MSigDB) was performed for genes found in conserved pathways. We obtained 28 modules of significantly enriched GO processes and 5 major functional categories from significantly enriched KEGG pathways conserved in human, mice and rats that in turn suggest a global transcriptomic perturbation affecting cyst - formation, growth and progression. Significantly enriched pathways obtained from up-regulated genes such as Genomic instability, Protein localization in ER and Insulin Resistance were found to regulate cyst formation and growth whereas cyst progression due to increased cell adhesion and inflammation was suggested by perturbations in Angiogenesis, TGF-beta, CAMs, and Infection related pathways. Additionally, networks revealed shared genes among pathways e.g. SMAD2 and SMAD7 in Endocytosis and TGF-beta. Our study suggests cyst formation and progression to be an outcome of interplay between a set of several key deregulated pathways. Thus, further translational research is warranted focusing on developing a combinatorial therapeutic

  12. Science for All: Strengthening Pathways for Scientists and Engineers to Bring Real-World Relevancy to STEM Concepts During Just-in-Time Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klug Boonstra, S.

    2017-12-01

    With the advent and widespread adoption of virtual connectivity, it is possible for scientists, engineers, and other STEM professionals to reach every place the youth of America learn! Arizona State University's School of Earth and Space Exploration, in planned collaboration with national STEM organizations, agencies, and education partners, are proposing a bold, collaborative, national model that will better enable STEM professionals of all disciplines to meet the needs of their audiences more effectively and efficiently. STEM subject matter experts (SMEs) can bring timely and authentic, real-world examples that engage and motivate learners in the conceptual learning journey presented through formal and informal curricula while also providing a personal face and story of their STEM journey and experience. With over 6.2 million scientists and engineers, 55.6 million PreK-12 students, and 6.3 million community college students in the US, the possible reach, long-term impact, and benefits of the virtual, just-in-time interactions between SMEs, teachers, and students has the potential to provide the missing links of relevancy and real-world application that will engage learners and enhance STEM understanding at a higher, deeper level while having the capacity to do this at a national scale. Providing professional development training for the SMEs will be an essential element in helping them to understand where their STEM work is relevant and appropriate within educational learning progressions. The vision for STEM Connect will be to prepare the STEM SMEs to share their expertise in a way that will show the dynamic and iterative nature of STEM research and design, helping them to bring their STEM expertise to formal and informal learners in a strategic and meaningful way. Discussions with possible STEM Connect collaborators (e.g., national STEM member-based organizations, technology providers, federal agencies, and professional educational organizations) are underway

  13. Lung Cancer Cell Line Screen Links Fanconi Anemia/BRCA Pathway Defects to Increased Relative Biological Effectiveness of Proton Radiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Qi; Ghosh, Priyanjali; Magpayo, Nicole [Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts (United States); Testa, Mauro; Tang, Shikui [Division of Radiation Physics, Department of Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts (United States); Gheorghiu, Liliana [Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts (United States); Biggs, Peter; Paganetti, Harald [Division of Radiation Physics, Department of Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts (United States); Efstathiou, Jason A. [Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts (United States); Lu, Hsiao-Ming [Division of Radiation Physics, Department of Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts (United States); Held, Kathryn D. [Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts (United States); Willers, Henning, E-mail: hwillers@mgh.harvard.edu [Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts (United States)

    2015-04-01

    Purpose: Growing knowledge of genomic heterogeneity in cancer, especially when it results in altered DNA damage responses, requires re-examination of the generic relative biological effectiveness (RBE) of 1.1 of protons. Methods and Materials: For determination of cellular radiosensitivity, we irradiated 17 lung cancer cell lines at the mid-spread-out Bragg peak of a clinical proton beam (linear energy transfer, 2.5 keV/μm). For comparison, 250-kVp X rays and {sup 137}Cs γ-rays were used. To estimate the RBE of protons relative to {sup 60}Co (Co60eq), we assigned an RBE(Co60Eq) of 1.1 to X rays to correct the physical dose measured. Standard DNA repair foci assays were used to monitor damage responses. FANCD2 was depleted using RNA interference. Results: Five lung cancer cell lines (29.4%) exhibited reduced clonogenic survival after proton irradiation compared with X-irradiation with the same physical doses. This was confirmed in a 3-dimensional sphere assay. Corresponding proton RBE(Co60Eq) estimates were statistically significantly different from 1.1 (P≤.05): 1.31 to 1.77 (for a survival fraction of 0.5). In 3 of these lines, increased RBE was correlated with alterations in the Fanconi anemia (FA)/BRCA pathway of DNA repair. In Calu-6 cells, the data pointed toward an FA pathway defect, leading to a previously unreported persistence of proton-induced RAD51 foci. The FA/BRCA-defective cells displayed a 25% increase in the size of subnuclear 53BP1 foci 18 hours after proton irradiation. Conclusions: Our cell line screen has revealed variations in proton RBE that are partly due to FA/BRCA pathway defects, suggesting that the use of a generic RBE for cancers should be revisited. We propose that functional biomarkers, such as size of residual 53BP1 foci, may be used to identify cancers with increased sensitivity to proton radiation.

  14. A Western Blot-based Investigation of the Yeast Secretory Pathway Designed for an Intermediate-Level Undergraduate Cell Biology Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hood-DeGrenier, Jennifer K.

    2008-01-01

    The movement of newly synthesized proteins through the endomembrane system of eukaryotic cells, often referred to generally as the secretory pathway, is a topic covered in most intermediate-level undergraduate cell biology courses. An article previously published in this journal described a laboratory exercise in which yeast mutants defective in…

  15. Application of Raman microscopy for simultaneous and quantitative evaluation of multiple intracellular polymers dynamics functionally relevant to enhanced biological phosphorus removal processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Majed, Nehreen; Gu, April Z

    2010-11-15

    Polyphosphate (poly-P), polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs), and glycogen are the key functionally relevant intracellular polymers involved in the enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) process. Further understanding of the mechanisms of EBPR has been hampered by the lack of cellular level quantification tools to accurately measure the dynamics of these polymers during the EBPR process. In this study, we developed a novel Raman microscopy method for simultaneous identification and quantification of poly-P, PHB, and glycogen abundance in each individual cell and their distribution among the populations in EBPR. Validation of the method was demonstrated via a batch phosphorus uptake and release test, in which the total intracellular polymers abundance determined via Raman approach correlated well with those measured via conventional bulk chemical analysis (correlation coefficient r = 0.8 for poly-P, r = 0.94 for PHB, and r = 0.7 for glycogen). Raman results, for the first time, clearly showed the distributions of microbial cells containing different abundance levels of the three intracellular polymers under the same environmental conditions (at a given time point), indicating population heterogeneity exists. The results revealed the intracellular distribution and dynamics of the functionally relevant polymers in different metabolic stages of the EBPR process and elucidated the association of cellular metabolic state with the fate of these polymers during various substrates availability conditions.

  16. Chemometric analysis of correlations between electronic absorption characteristics and structural and/or physicochemical parameters for ampholytic substances of biological and pharmaceutical relevance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Judycka-Proma, U.; Bober, L.; Gajewicz, A.; Puzyn, T.; Błażejowski, J.

    2015-03-01

    Forty ampholytic compounds of biological and pharmaceutical relevance were subjected to chemometric analysis based on unsupervised and supervised learning algorithms. This enabled relations to be found between empirical spectral characteristics derived from electronic absorption data and structural and physicochemical parameters predicted by quantum chemistry methods or phenomenological relationships based on additivity rules. It was found that the energies of long wavelength absorption bands are correlated through multiparametric linear relationships with parameters reflecting the bulkiness features of the absorbing molecules as well as their nucleophilicity and electrophilicity. These dependences enable the quantitative analysis of spectral features of the compounds, as well as a comparison of their similarities and certain pharmaceutical and biological features. Three QSPR models to predict the energies of long-wavelength absorption in buffers with pH = 2.5 and pH = 7.0, as well as in methanol, were developed and validated in this study. These models can be further used to predict the long-wavelength absorption energies of untested substances (if they are structurally similar to the training compounds).

  17. Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    I am particularly happy that the Academy is bringing out this document by Professor M S. Valiathan on Ayurvedic Biology. It is an effort to place before the scientific community, especially that of India, the unique scientific opportunities that arise out of viewing Ayurveda from the perspective of contemporary science, its tools ...

  18. A genome-wide association meta-analysis of diarrhoeal disease in young children identifies FUT2 locus and provides plausible biological pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bustamante, Mariona; Standl, Marie; Bassat, Quique; Vilor-Tejedor, Natalia; Medina-Gomez, Carolina; Bonilla, Carolina; Ahluwalia, Tarunveer S; Bacelis, Jonas; Bradfield, Jonathan P; Tiesler, Carla M T; Rivadeneira, Fernando; Ring, Susan; Vissing, Nadja H; Fink, Nadia R; Jugessur, Astanand; Mentch, Frank D; Ballester, Ferran; Kriebel, Jennifer; Kiefte-de Jong, Jessica C; Wolsk, Helene M; Llop, Sabrina; Thiering, Elisabeth; Beth, Systke A; Timpson, Nicholas J; Andersen, Josefine; Schulz, Holger; Jaddoe, Vincent W V; Evans, David M; Waage, Johannes; Hakonarson, Hakon; Grant, Struan F A; Jacobsson, Bo; Bønnelykke, Klaus; Bisgaard, Hans; Davey Smith, George; Moll, Henriette A; Heinrich, Joachim; Estivill, Xavier; Sunyer, Jordi

    2016-09-15

    More than a million childhood diarrhoeal episodes occur worldwide each year, and in developed countries a considerable part of them are caused by viral infections. In this study, we aimed to search for genetic variants associated with diarrhoeal disease in young children by meta-analyzing genome-wide association studies, and to elucidate plausible biological mechanisms. The study was conducted in the context of the Early Genetics and Lifecourse Epidemiology (EAGLE) consortium. Data about diarrhoeal disease in two time windows (around 1 year of age and around 2 years of age) was obtained via parental questionnaires, doctor interviews or medical records. Standard quality control and statistical tests were applied to the 1000 Genomes imputed genotypic data. The meta-analysis (N = 5758) followed by replication (N = 3784) identified a genome-wide significant association between rs8111874 and diarrhoea at age 1 year. Conditional analysis suggested that the causal variant could be rs601338 (W154X) in the FUT2 gene. Children with the A allele, which results in a truncated FUT2 protein, had lower risk of diarrhoea. FUT2 participates in the production of histo-blood group antigens and has previously been implicated in the susceptibility to infections, including Rotavirus and Norovirus Gene-set enrichment analysis suggested pathways related to the histo-blood group antigen production, and the regulation of ion transport and blood pressure. Among others, the gastrointestinal tract, and the immune and neuro-secretory systems were detected as relevant organs. In summary, this genome-wide association meta-analysis suggests the implication of the FUT2 gene in diarrhoeal disease in young children from the general population. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Not quite PIB-positive, not quite PIB-negative: slight PIB elevations in elderly normal control subjects are biologically relevant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mormino, Elizabeth C; Brandel, Michael G; Madison, Cindee M; Rabinovici, Gil D; Marks, Shawn; Baker, Suzanne L; Jagust, William J

    2012-01-16

    Researchers employing Pittsburgh Compound B positron emission tomography (PIB-PET) imaging have consistently indentified old normal control (oNC) subjects with elevated tracer uptake, suggesting the presence of beta-amyloid deposition in these individuals. However, a consensus regarding the level at which PIB reveals a biologically meaningful signal does not exist (ie. an appropriate cutoff value for PIB positivity remains unclear). In this exploratory study, we sought to investigate the range of PIB distribution volume ratio (DVR) values present in our oNC cohort (N=75, age range=58-97). oNC subjects were classified based on global PIB index values (average DVR across prefrontal, parietal, lateral temporal and cingulate cortices) by employing two approaches: (1) an iterative outlier approach that revealed a cutoff value of 1.16 (IO-cutoff) and (2) an approach using data from a sample of young normal control subjects (N=11, age range=20-30) that yielded a cutoff value of 1.08 (yNC-cutoff). oNC subjects falling above the IO-cutoff had values similar to AD subjects ("PIB+", 15%). Subjects falling between the 2 cutoffs were considered to have ambiguous PIB status ("Ambig", 20%) and the remaining oNC were considered "PIB-" (65%). Additional measures capturing focal DVR magnitude and extent of elevated DVR values were consistent with the classification scheme using PIB index values, and revealed evidence for elevated DVR values in a subset of PIB- oNC subjects. Furthermore, there were a greater proportion of ambiguously elevated values compared to low values, and these elevated values were present in regions known to show amyloid deposition. The analyses presented in this study, in conjunction with recently published pathological data, suggest a biological relevance of slight PIB elevations in aging. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Activity on Trypanosoma cruzi, erythrocytes lysis and biologically relevant physicochemical properties of Pd(II) and Pt(II) complexes of thiosemicarbazones derived from 1-indanones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, Diego; Parajón-Costa, Beatriz; Rossi, Miriam; Caruso, Francesco; Benítez, Diego; Varela, Javier; Cerecetto, Hugo; González, Mercedes; Gómez, Natalia; Caputto, María E; Moglioni, Albertina G; Moltrasio, Graciela Y; Finkielsztein, Liliana M; Gambino, Dinorah

    2012-12-01

    American trypanosomiasis or Chagas disease, caused by the protist parasite Trypanosoma cruzi (T. cruzi), is a major health concern in Latin America. In the search for new bioactive compounds, eight Pd(II) and Pt(II) complexes of thiosemicarbazones derived from 1-indanones (HL) were evaluated as potential anti-T. cruzi compounds. Their unspecific cytotoxicity was determined on human erythrocytes. Two physicochemical features, lipophilicity and redox behavior, that could be potentially relevant for the biological activity of these complexes, were determined. Crystal structure of [Pd(HL1)(L1)]Cl·CH(3)OH, where HL1=1-indanone thiosemicarbazone, was solved by X-ray diffraction methods. Five of the eight metal complexes showed activity against T. cruzi with IC(50) values in the low micromolar range and showed significantly higher activity than the corresponding free ligands. Four of them resulted more active against the parasite than the reference antitrypanosomal drug Nifurtimox. Anti-T. cruzi activity and selectivity towards the parasite were both higher for the Pd(II) compounds than for the Pt(II) analogues, showing the effect of the metal center selection on the biological behavior. Among both physicochemical features tested for this series of compounds, lipophilicity and redox behavior, only the former seemed to show correlation with the antiproliferative effects observed. Metal coordination improved bioactivity but lead to an increase of mammalian cytotoxicity. Nevertheless, some of the metal complexes tested in this work still show suitable selectivity indexes and deserve further developments. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Correlation between γ-ray-induced DNA double-strand breakage and cell killing after biologically relevant doses: analysis by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Murray, D.

    1994-01-01

    We examined the degree of correlation between γ-ray-induced lethality and DNA double-strand breaks (dsbs) after biologically relevant doses of radiation. Radiation lethality was modified by treating 14 C-labelled Chinese hamster ovary cells with either of two aminothiols (WR-1065 or WR-255591) and the associated effect on dsb induction was determined by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). The use of phosphorimaging to analyse the distribution of 14 C-activity in the gel greatly improved the low-dose resolution of the PFGE assay. Both WR-1065 and WR-255591 protected against dsb induction and lethality to a similar extent after low doses of radiation. although this correlation broke down when supralethal doses were used to induce dsbs. Thus, the level of dsbs induced in these cells as measured by PFGE after survival-curve doses of γ-radiation is consistently predictive of the degree of lethality obtained, implying a cause-effect relationship between these two parameters and confirming previous results obtained using the neutral filter elution assay for dsbs. (author)

  2. Evaluating legacy contaminants and emerging chemicals in marine environments using adverse outcome pathways and biological effects-directed analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hutchinson, Thomas H; Lyons, Brett P; Thain, John E; Law, Robin J

    2013-09-30

    important scientific, economic and health challenges. In order to meet these challenges and pursue cost-effective scientific approaches that can provide evidence necessary to support policy needs (e.g. the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive), it is widely recognised that there is a need to (i) provide marine exposure assessments for priority contaminants using a range of validated models, passive samplers and biomarkers; (ii) integrate chemical monitoring data with biological effects data across spatial and temporal scales (including quality controls); and (iii) strengthen the evidence base to understand the relationship between exposure to complex chemical mixtures, biological and ecological impacts through integrated approaches and molecular data (e.g. genomics, proteomics and metabolomics). Additionally, we support the widely held view that (iv) that rather than increasing the analytical chemistry monitoring of large number of emerging contaminants, it will be important to target analytical chemistry towards key groups of chemicals of concern using effects-directed analysis. It is also important to evaluate to what extent existing biomarkers and bioassays can address various classes of emerging chemicals using the adverse outcome pathway (AOP) approach now being developed by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) with respect to human toxicology and ecotoxicology. Crown Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Integrative analyses of miRNA and proteomics identify potential biological pathways associated with onset of pulmonary fibrosis in the bleomycin rat model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fukunaga, Satoki [Department of Molecular Pathology, Osaka City University Graduate School of Medicine, 1-4-3 Asahi-machi, Abeno-ku, Osaka 545-8585 (Japan); Environmental Health Science Laboratory, Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd., 3-1-98 Kasugade-Naka, Konohana-ku, Osaka 554-8558 (Japan); Kakehashi, Anna [Department of Molecular Pathology, Osaka City University Graduate School of Medicine, 1-4-3 Asahi-machi, Abeno-ku, Osaka 545-8585 (Japan); Sumida, Kayo; Kushida, Masahiko; Asano, Hiroyuki [Environmental Health Science Laboratory, Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd., 3-1-98 Kasugade-Naka, Konohana-ku, Osaka 554-8558 (Japan); Gi, Min [Department of Molecular Pathology, Osaka City University Graduate School of Medicine, 1-4-3 Asahi-machi, Abeno-ku, Osaka 545-8585 (Japan); Wanibuchi, Hideki, E-mail: wani@med.osaka-cu.ac.jp [Department of Molecular Pathology, Osaka City University Graduate School of Medicine, 1-4-3 Asahi-machi, Abeno-ku, Osaka 545-8585 (Japan)

    2015-08-01

    To determine miRNAs and their predicted target proteins regulatory networks which are potentially involved in onset of pulmonary fibrosis in the bleomycin rat model, we conducted integrative miRNA microarray and iTRAQ-coupled LC-MS/MS proteomic analyses, and evaluated the significance of altered biological functions and pathways. We observed that alterations of miRNAs and proteins are associated with the early phase of bleomycin-induced pulmonary fibrosis, and identified potential target pairs by using ingenuity pathway analysis. Using the data set of these alterations, it was demonstrated that those miRNAs, in association with their predicted target proteins, are potentially involved in canonical pathways reflective of initial epithelial injury and fibrogenic processes, and biofunctions related to induction of cellular development, movement, growth, and proliferation. Prediction of activated functions suggested that lung cells acquire proliferative, migratory, and invasive capabilities, and resistance to cell death especially in the very early phase of bleomycin-induced pulmonary fibrosis. The present study will provide new insights for understanding the molecular pathogenesis of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. - Highlights: • We analyzed bleomycin-induced pulmonary fibrosis in the rat. • Integrative analyses of miRNA microarray and proteomics were conducted. • We determined the alterations of miRNAs and their potential target proteins. • The alterations may control biological functions and pathways in pulmonary fibrosis. • Our result may provide new insights of pulmonary fibrosis.

  4. High-throughput siRNA screening as a method of perturbation of biological systems and identification of targeted pathways coupled with compound screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiefer, Jeff; Yin, Hongwei H; Que, Qiang Q; Mousses, Spyro

    2009-01-01

    High-throughput RNA interference (HT-RNAi) is a powerful research tool for parallel, 'genome-wide', targeted knockdown of specific gene products. Such perturbation of gene product expression allows for the systematic query of gene function. The phenotypic results can be monitored by assaying for specific alterations in molecular and cellular endpoints, such as promoter activation, cell proliferation and survival. RNAi profiling may also be coupled with drug screening to identify molecular correlates of drug response. As with other genomic-scale data, methods of data analysis are required to handle the unique aspects of data normalization and statistical processing. In addition, novel techniques or knowledge-mining strategies are required to extract useful biological information from HT-RNAi data. Knowledge-mining strategies involve the novel application of bioinformatic tools and expert curation to provide biological context to genomic-scale data such as that generated from HT-RNAi data. Pathway-based tools, whether text-mining based or manually curated, serve an essential role in knowledge mining. These tools can be applied during all steps of HT-RNAi screen experiments including pre-screen knowledge gathering, assay development and hit confirmation and validation. Most importantly, pathway tools allow the interrogation of HT-RNAi data to identify and prioritize pathway-based biological information as a result of specific loss of gene function.

  5. Pathway analysis and optimization in metabolic engineering

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Torres, Néstor V; Voit, Eberhard O

    2002-01-01

    ... Engineering introduces researchers and advanced students in biology and engineering to methods of optimizing biochemical systems of biotechnological relevance. It examines the development of strategies for manipulating metabolic pathways, demonstrates the need for effective systems models, and discusses their design and analysis, while placing special emp...

  6. Spatial distribution of osteopontin, CD44v6 and podoplanin in the lining epithelium of odontogenic keratocyst, and their biological relevance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kechik, Khamisah Awang; Siar, Chong Huat

    2018-02-01

    The odontogenic keratocyst (OKC) remains the most challenging jaw cyst to treat because of its locally-aggressive behaviour and high recurrence potential. Emerging evidence suggests that osteopontin, its receptors CD44v6 and integrin α v , and podoplanin, have a role in the local invasiveness of this cyst. However the spatial distribution characteristics of these pro-invasive markers in the lining epithelium of OKC, and their association with the clinicopathologic parameters of OKC are largely unexplored. This study sought to address these issues in comparison with dentigerous cysts (DCs) and radicular cysts (RCs) and to evaluate their biological relevance. A sample consisting of 20 OKC cases, 10 DCs and 10 RCs was subjected to immunohistochemical staining for osteopontin, CD44v6 and integrin α v , and podoplanin, and semiquantitative analysis was performed. All factors (except integrin α v ) were detected heterogeneously in the constitutive layers of the lining epithelium in all three cyst types. Key observations were significant upregulation of CD44v6 and podoplanin in OKC compared to DCs and RCs, suggesting that these protein molecules may play crucial roles in promoting local invasiveness in OKC (P<0.05). Osteopontin underexpression and distribution patterns were indistinctive among all three cysts indicating its limited role as pro-invasive factor. Clinical parameters showed no significant correlations with all protein factors investigated. Present findings suggest that an osteopontin low CD44v6 high and podoplanin high immunoprofile most probably represent epithelial signatures of OKC and are markers of local invasiveness in this cyst. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Salt-stimulation of caesium accumulation in the euryhaline green microalga Chlorella salina: potential relevance to the development of a biological Cs-removal process

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Avery, S.V.; Codd, G.A.; Gadd, G.M.

    1993-01-01

    Accumulation of Cs + by Chlorella salina was 28-fold greater in cells incubated in the presence than in the absence of 0.5 M-NaCl. An approximate 70% removal of external Cs + resulted after 15 h incubation of cells with 50 μ;M-CsCl and 0.5 M-NaCl. LiCl also had a stimulatory effect on Cs + uptake, although mannitol did not. Cs + influx increased with increasing external NaCl concentration and was maximal between 25-500 mM-NaCl at approximately 4 nmol Cs + h−1 (10 6 cells) −1 . Little effect on Cs + uptake resulted from the presence of Mg 2+ or Ca 2+ or from varying the external pH, and Cs + was relatively non-toxic towards C. salina. At increasing cell densities (from 4 × 10 5 to 1 × 10 7 cells ml +1 ), decreasing amounts of Cs + were accumulated per cell although the rate of Cs + removal from the external medium was still greatest at the higher cell densities examined. Freely suspended C. salina and cell-loaded alginate microbeads accumulated similar levels of Cs + , however, 46% of total Cs + uptake was attributable to the calcium-alginate matrix in the latter case. When Cs + -loaded cells were subjected to hypoosmotic shock, loss of cellular Cs + occurred allowing easy Cs + recovery. This loss exceeded 90% of cellular Cs + when cells were washed with solutions containing ≤ 50 mM-NaCl between consecutive Cs + uptake periods; these cells subsequently lost their ability to accumulate large amounts of Cs + . Maximal Cs + uptake (approximately 85.1% removal after three 15 h incubations) occurred when cells were washed with a solution containing 500 mM-NaCl and 200 mM-KCl between incubations. The relevance of these results to the possible use of C. salina in a salt-dependent biological Cs-removal process is discussed. (author)

  8. Immediate Early Genes Anchor a Biological Pathway of Proteins Required for Memory Formation, Long-Term Depression and Risk for Schizophrenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marballi, Ketan K.; Gallitano, Amelia L.

    2018-01-01

    While the causes of myriad medical and infectious illnesses have been identified, the etiologies of neuropsychiatric illnesses remain elusive. This is due to two major obstacles. First, the risk for neuropsychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia, is determined by both genetic and environmental factors. Second, numerous genes influence susceptibility for these illnesses. Genome-wide association studies have identified at least 108 genomic loci for schizophrenia, and more are expected to be published shortly. In addition, numerous biological processes contribute to the neuropathology underlying schizophrenia. These include immune dysfunction, synaptic and myelination deficits, vascular abnormalities, growth factor disruption, and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) hypofunction. However, the field of psychiatric genetics lacks a unifying model to explain how environment may interact with numerous genes to influence these various biological processes and cause schizophrenia. Here we describe a biological cascade of proteins that are activated in response to environmental stimuli such as stress, a schizophrenia risk factor. The central proteins in this pathway are critical mediators of memory formation and a particular form of hippocampal synaptic plasticity, long-term depression (LTD). Each of these proteins is also implicated in schizophrenia risk. In fact, the pathway includes four genes that map to the 108 loci associated with schizophrenia: GRIN2A, nuclear factor of activated T-cells (NFATc3), early growth response 1 (EGR1) and NGFI-A Binding Protein 2 (NAB2); each of which contains the “Index single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)” (most SNP) at its respective locus. Environmental stimuli activate this biological pathway in neurons, resulting in induction of EGR immediate early genes: EGR1, EGR3 and NAB2. We hypothesize that dysfunction in any of the genes in this pathway disrupts the normal activation of Egrs in response to stress. This may result in

  9. Immediate Early Genes Anchor a Biological Pathway of Proteins Required for Memory Formation, Long-Term Depression and Risk for Schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ketan K. Marballi

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available While the causes of myriad medical and infectious illnesses have been identified, the etiologies of neuropsychiatric illnesses remain elusive. This is due to two major obstacles. First, the risk for neuropsychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia, is determined by both genetic and environmental factors. Second, numerous genes influence susceptibility for these illnesses. Genome-wide association studies have identified at least 108 genomic loci for schizophrenia, and more are expected to be published shortly. In addition, numerous biological processes contribute to the neuropathology underlying schizophrenia. These include immune dysfunction, synaptic and myelination deficits, vascular abnormalities, growth factor disruption, and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR hypofunction. However, the field of psychiatric genetics lacks a unifying model to explain how environment may interact with numerous genes to influence these various biological processes and cause schizophrenia. Here we describe a biological cascade of proteins that are activated in response to environmental stimuli such as stress, a schizophrenia risk factor. The central proteins in this pathway are critical mediators of memory formation and a particular form of hippocampal synaptic plasticity, long-term depression (LTD. Each of these proteins is also implicated in schizophrenia risk. In fact, the pathway includes four genes that map to the 108 loci associated with schizophrenia: GRIN2A, nuclear factor of activated T-cells (NFATc3, early growth response 1 (EGR1 and NGFI-A Binding Protein 2 (NAB2; each of which contains the “Index single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP” (most SNP at its respective locus. Environmental stimuli activate this biological pathway in neurons, resulting in induction of EGR immediate early genes: EGR1, EGR3 and NAB2. We hypothesize that dysfunction in any of the genes in this pathway disrupts the normal activation of Egrs in response to stress. This may

  10. The melanomas: a synthesis of epidemiological, clinical, histopathological, genetic, and biological aspects, supporting distinct subtypes, causal pathways, and cells of origin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whiteman, David C.; Pavan, William J; Bastian, Boris C.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Converging lines of evidence from varied scientific disciplines suggest that cutaneous melanomas comprise biologically distinct subtypes that arise through multiple causal pathways. Understanding the respective relationships of each subtype with etiologic factors such as UV radiation and constitutional factors is the first necessary step toward developing refined prevention strategies for the specific forms of melanoma. Furthermore, classifying this disease precisely into biologically distinct subtypes is the key to developing mechanism- based treatments, as highlighted by recent discoveries. In this review, we outline the historical developments that underpin our understanding of melanoma heterogeneity, and we do this from the perspectives of clinical presentation, histopathology, epidemiology, molecular genetics, and developmental biology. We integrate the evidence from these separate trajectories to catalog the emerging major categories of melanomas and conclude with important unanswered questions relating to the development of melanoma and its cells of origin. PMID:21707960

  11. Changes in the number of CD31−CD45−Sca-1+ cells and Shh signaling pathway involvement in the lungs of mice with emphysema and relevant effects of acute adenovirus infection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deng MH

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Minhua Deng,1,2 Jinhua Li,2 Ye Gan,3 Yan Chen,2 Ping Chen2 1Respiratory Medicine Department, PLA Rocket Force General Hospital, Beijing, 2Respiratory Medicine Department, 3Rehabilitation Department, Second Xiangya Hospital, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan Province, People’s Republic of China Background: COPD is a leading cause of mortality worldwide, and cigarette smoke is a pivotal risk factor. Adenovirus is a common cause of acute exacerbations of COPD and expedites COPD progression. Lung stem/progenitor cells play an important role in the development of COPD, while the relevant mechanism remains elusive. Here, we investigated the number of lung CD31-CD45-Sca-1+ cells and sonic hedgehog (Shh signaling pathway expression levels in cigarette smoke extract (CSE-induced emphysema mice, as well as the relevant effects of acute adenovirus infection (AAI. Materials and methods: BALB/c mice were treated with CSE by intraperitoneal injection and/or adenovirus endotracheal instillation at different time points for 28 days. Lung function, lung histomorphology, CD31-CD45-Sca-1+ cell count, and expression levels of major components in the Shh signaling pathway in the lungs were measured. Results: CSE intraperitoneal injection and adenovirus endotracheal instillation successfully induced emphysema and AAI in mice, respectively. In the lungs of emphysema mice, both the number of CD31-CD45-Sca-1+ cells and expression levels of Shh signaling pathway molecules were reduced. However, AAI increased the number of inhibited CD31-CD45-Sca-1+ cells and activated the suppression of the Shh signaling pathway. Conclusion: Both CD31-CD45-Sca-1+ cell numbers and Shh signaling pathway expression levels were downregulated in the lungs of emphysema mice induced by CSE intraperitoneal injection, which likely contributes to the pathogenesis of emphysema. Additionally, these inhibited lung CD31-CD45-Sca-1+ cells and Shh signaling pathway molecules were upregulated

  12. Sexual incentive motivation, olfactory preference, and activation of the vomeronasal projection pathway by sexually relevant cues in non-copulating and naive male rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portillo, Wendy; Paredes, Raúl G

    2004-09-01

    There are some apparently healthy male rats that fail to mate after repeated testing with receptive females. We have previously shown that these "non-copulator (NC)" males show no partner preference for a receptive female when given the opportunity to physically interact with a sexually receptive female or a sexually active male. We also demonstrated that although NC males prefer odors from estrous females to odors from anestrous females, this preference is significantly reduced in comparison to the preference displayed by copulating (C) males. The aim of the present study was to evaluate in NC males sexual incentive motivation, that is, the approach behavior of male rats to either a sexually receptive female or a sexually active male in a test where the subjects can smell, hear, and see the stimulus animal but prevents their physical interaction. In addition, we determined whether NC rats have alterations in their ability to detect odors from conspecifics or odors related to food. In the detection of odors from conspecifics, we determined if these NC males are sexually attracted toward odors from receptive females or sexually active males. For food-related odors, we quantified the time it took the subjects to locate a hidden a piece of apple. Finally, using the induction of Fos-immunoreactivity (Fos-IR) as an index of neuronal activation, we compared the response of the vomeronasal projection pathway (VN pathway) of C and NC male rats exposed to estrous bedding. Males without sexual experience (WSE) were included in all experiments to determine the importance of previous heterosexual experience in the different behavioral tests and in the activity of the VN pathway. In the sexual incentive motivation test, we found that C and WSE male rats have a clear preference for estrous females over sexually active males, whereas NC male rats showed no preference. In odor tests, our results showed that C males had a clear preference for odors from estrous females as opposed

  13. Signaling pathways effecting crosstalk between cartilage and adjacent tissues: Seminars in cell and developmental biology: The biology and pathology of cartilage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maes, Christa

    2017-02-01

    Endochondral ossification, the mechanism responsible for the development of the long bones, is dependent on an extremely stringent coordination between the processes of chondrocyte maturation in the growth plate, vascular expansion in the surrounding tissues, and osteoblast differentiation and osteogenesis in the perichondrium and the developing bone center. The synchronization of these processes occurring in adjacent tissues is regulated through vigorous crosstalk between chondrocytes, endothelial cells and osteoblast lineage cells. Our knowledge about the molecular constituents of these bidirectional communications is undoubtedly incomplete, but certainly some signaling pathways effective in cartilage have been recognized to play key roles in steering vascularization and osteogenesis in the perichondrial tissues. These include hypoxia-driven signaling pathways, governed by the hypoxia-inducible factors (HIFs) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), which are absolutely essential for the survival and functioning of chondrocytes in the avascular growth plate, at least in part by regulating the oxygenation of developing cartilage through the stimulation of angiogenesis in the surrounding tissues. A second coordinating signal emanating from cartilage and regulating developmental processes in the adjacent perichondrium is Indian Hedgehog (IHH). IHH, produced by pre-hypertrophic and early hypertrophic chondrocytes in the growth plate, induces the differentiation of adjacent perichondrial progenitor cells into osteoblasts, thereby harmonizing the site and time of bone formation with the developmental progression of chondrogenesis. Both signaling pathways represent vital mediators of the tightly organized conversion of avascular cartilage into vascularized and mineralized bone during endochondral ossification. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  14. Coordinated induction of GST and MRP2 by cAMP in Caco-2 cells: Role of protein kinase A signaling pathway and toxicological relevance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arana, Maite Rocío; Tocchetti, Guillermo Nicolás; Domizi, Pablo; Arias, Agostina; Rigalli, Juan Pablo; Ruiz, María Laura

    2015-01-01

    The cAMP pathway is a universal signaling pathway regulating many cellular processes including metabolic routes, growth and differentiation. However, its effects on xenobiotic biotransformation and transport systems are poorly characterized. The effect of cAMP on expression and activity of GST and MRP2 was evaluated in Caco-2 cells, a model of intestinal epithelium. Cells incubated with the cAMP permeable analog dibutyryl cyclic AMP (db-cAMP: 1,10,100 μM) for 48 h exhibited a dose–response increase in GST class α and MRP2 protein expression. Incubation with forskolin, an activator of adenylyl cyclase, confirmed the association between intracellular cAMP and upregulation of MRP2. Consistent with increased expression of GSTα and MRP2, db-cAMP enhanced their activities, as well as cytoprotection against the common substrate 1-chloro-2,4-dinitrobenzene. Pretreatment with protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitors totally abolished upregulation of MRP2 and GSTα induced by db-cAMP. In silico analysis together with experiments consisting of treatment with db-cAMP of Caco-2 cells transfected with a reporter construct containing CRE and AP-1 sites evidenced participation of these sites in MRP2 upregulation. Further studies involving the transcription factors CREB and AP-1 (c-JUN, c-FOS and ATF2) demonstrated increased levels of total c-JUN and phosphorylation of c-JUN and ATF2 by db-cAMP, which were suppressed by a PKA inhibitor. Co-immunoprecipitation and ChIP assay studies demonstrated that db-cAMP increased c-JUN/ATF2 interaction, with further recruitment to the region of the MRP2 promoter containing CRE and AP-1 sites. We conclude that cAMP induces GSTα and MRP2 expression and activity in Caco-2 cells via the PKA pathway, thus regulating detoxification of specific xenobiotics. - Highlights: • cAMP positively modulates the expression and activity of GST and MRP2 in Caco-2 cells. • Such induction resulted in increased cytoprotection against chemical injury. • PKA

  15. Coordinated induction of GST and MRP2 by cAMP in Caco-2 cells: Role of protein kinase A signaling pathway and toxicological relevance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arana, Maite Rocío, E-mail: arana@ifise-conicet.gov.ar [Instituto de Fisiología Experimental (CONICET), Facultad de Ciencias Bioquímicas y Farmacéuticas (UNR), Suipacha 570, 2000 Rosario (Argentina); Tocchetti, Guillermo Nicolás, E-mail: gtocchetti@live.com.ar [Instituto de Fisiología Experimental (CONICET), Facultad de Ciencias Bioquímicas y Farmacéuticas (UNR), Suipacha 570, 2000 Rosario (Argentina); Domizi, Pablo, E-mail: domizi@ibr-conicet.gov.ar [Instituto de Biología Molecular y Celular de Rosario (CONICET), Facultad de Ciencias Bioquímicas y Farmacéuticas (UNR), Suipacha 570, 2000 Rosario (Argentina); Arias, Agostina, E-mail: agoarias@yahoo.com.ar [Instituto de Fisiología Experimental (CONICET), Facultad de Ciencias Bioquímicas y Farmacéuticas (UNR), Suipacha 570, 2000 Rosario (Argentina); Rigalli, Juan Pablo, E-mail: jprigalli@gmail.com [Instituto de Fisiología Experimental (CONICET), Facultad de Ciencias Bioquímicas y Farmacéuticas (UNR), Suipacha 570, 2000 Rosario (Argentina); Ruiz, María Laura, E-mail: ruiz@ifise-conicet.gov.ar [Instituto de Fisiología Experimental (CONICET), Facultad de Ciencias Bioquímicas y Farmacéuticas (UNR), Suipacha 570, 2000 Rosario (Argentina); and others

    2015-09-01

    The cAMP pathway is a universal signaling pathway regulating many cellular processes including metabolic routes, growth and differentiation. However, its effects on xenobiotic biotransformation and transport systems are poorly characterized. The effect of cAMP on expression and activity of GST and MRP2 was evaluated in Caco-2 cells, a model of intestinal epithelium. Cells incubated with the cAMP permeable analog dibutyryl cyclic AMP (db-cAMP: 1,10,100 μM) for 48 h exhibited a dose–response increase in GST class α and MRP2 protein expression. Incubation with forskolin, an activator of adenylyl cyclase, confirmed the association between intracellular cAMP and upregulation of MRP2. Consistent with increased expression of GSTα and MRP2, db-cAMP enhanced their activities, as well as cytoprotection against the common substrate 1-chloro-2,4-dinitrobenzene. Pretreatment with protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitors totally abolished upregulation of MRP2 and GSTα induced by db-cAMP. In silico analysis together with experiments consisting of treatment with db-cAMP of Caco-2 cells transfected with a reporter construct containing CRE and AP-1 sites evidenced participation of these sites in MRP2 upregulation. Further studies involving the transcription factors CREB and AP-1 (c-JUN, c-FOS and ATF2) demonstrated increased levels of total c-JUN and phosphorylation of c-JUN and ATF2 by db-cAMP, which were suppressed by a PKA inhibitor. Co-immunoprecipitation and ChIP assay studies demonstrated that db-cAMP increased c-JUN/ATF2 interaction, with further recruitment to the region of the MRP2 promoter containing CRE and AP-1 sites. We conclude that cAMP induces GSTα and MRP2 expression and activity in Caco-2 cells via the PKA pathway, thus regulating detoxification of specific xenobiotics. - Highlights: • cAMP positively modulates the expression and activity of GST and MRP2 in Caco-2 cells. • Such induction resulted in increased cytoprotection against chemical injury. • PKA

  16. Los itinerarios profesionales en Biología: un ejemplo de formación académica orientada a la inserción profesional Professional pathways in Biology: an example of professionally-oriented teaching

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José Aramburu

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Uno de los retos de la Universidad es formar los profesionales necesarios para la sociedad en que está inserta. Este ajuste no es fácil de obtener debido a la rigidez de los planes de estudios oficiales y a las cambiantes necesidades sociales. Sin embargo, el próximo Espacio Europeo de Educación Superior tiene este empeño como uno de sus principales objetivos. En el presente artículo se presenta la experiencia de los itinerarios profesionales de la licenciatura en Biología de la Universitat Pompeu Fabra durante dos cursos académicos. Situados en el quinto curso del plan de estudios, permiten a los estudiantes una formación específica en uno de los ámbitos profesionales en los que pueden insertarse laboralmente. La experiencia muestra que, tras un período de uno o dos años de su graduación, el 83% de los egresados se encuentran realizando un trabajo remunerado, en la mayoría de los casos relacionado con la biología, mientras que un 9% realizan otros estudios (no doctorado. Sólo el 3% de los graduados están buscando trabajo de forma activa. En conclusión, los itinerarios profesionales pueden constituir una estrategia educativa adecuada para permitir que los licenciados en Biología se inserten con éxito en ocupaciones laborales acordes con su formación.One of the main challenges facing universities is to train professionals who possess the skills that society requires. This is difficult to achieve due to the rigidity of official curricula and the constantly changing needs of society. However, it remains one of the main goals of the Bologna process. This paper describes the experience of the professional pathways which form part of the biology degree offered by the Universitat Pompeu Fabra, over a period of two academic years. Professional pathways are an essential part of the fifth year syllabus and provide students with specific training in one of the professional settings in which they may eventually work. Our experience

  17. A review of biological processes within oceanic water columns relevant to the assessment of the safety of disposal of waste, notably radioactive isotopes on or within the sea bed

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Angel, M.V.

    1985-01-01

    Pelagic biological processes and their connotations in the assessment of possible dispersal mechanisms of contaminants released on the deep oceanic seabed are reviewed. Biological gradients tend to be from the surface down so the search is for processes which run counter to these general gradients. Observed profiles of standing crop of both plankton and micronekton show that below 2000 m biological activity would have to be exceptionally dynamic to have an influence that will even approach within an order of magnitude of the dispersive effect of physical mixing. Examination of all forms of known migration mechanisms fails to reveal such dynamic activity. Nor have any critical pathways been identified within the present or foreseeable pattern of exploitation of the oceans. However, a major gap in knowledge is whether the pattern of these biological processes changes substantially in the region of continental slopes. (author)

  18. Polymorphisms in Genes of Relevance for Oestrogen and Oxytocin Pathways and Risk of Barrett's Oesophagus and Oesophageal Adenocarcinoma: A Pooled Analysis from the BEACON Consortium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagergren, Katarina; Ek, Weronica E; Levine, David; Chow, Wong-Ho; Bernstein, Leslie; Casson, Alan G; Risch, Harvey A; Shaheen, Nicholas J; Bird, Nigel C; Reid, Brian J; Corley, Douglas A; Hardie, Laura J; Wu, Anna H; Fitzgerald, Rebecca C; Pharoah, Paul; Caldas, Carlos; Romero, Yvonne; Vaughan, Thomas L; MacGregor, Stuart; Whiteman, David; Westberg, Lars; Nyren, Olof; Lagergren, Jesper

    2015-01-01

    The strong male predominance in oesophageal adenocarcinoma (OAC) and Barrett's oesophagus (BO) continues to puzzle. Hormonal influence, e.g. oestrogen or oxytocin, might contribute. This genetic-epidemiological study pooled 14 studies from three continents, Australia, Europe, and North America. Polymorphisms in 3 key genes coding for the oestrogen pathway (receptor alpha (ESR1), receptor beta (ESR2), and aromatase (CYP19A1)), and 3 key genes of the oxytocin pathway (the oxytocin receptor (OXTR), oxytocin protein (OXT), and cyclic ADP ribose hydrolase glycoprotein (CD38)), were analysed using a gene-based approach, versatile gene-based test association study (VEGAS). Among 1508 OAC patients, 2383 BO patients, and 2170 controls, genetic variants within ESR1 were associated with BO in males (p = 0.0058) and an increased risk of OAC and BO combined in males (p = 0.0023). Genetic variants within OXTR were associated with an increased risk of BO in both sexes combined (p = 0.0035) and in males (p = 0.0012). We followed up these suggestive findings in a further smaller data set, but found no replication. There were no significant associations between the other 4 genes studied and risk of OAC, BO, separately on in combination, in males and females combined or in males only. Genetic variants in the oestrogen receptor alpha and the oxytocin receptor may be associated with an increased risk of BO or OAC, but replication in other large samples are needed.

  19. Polymorphisms in Genes of Relevance for Oestrogen and Oxytocin Pathways and Risk of Barrett's Oesophagus and Oesophageal Adenocarcinoma: A Pooled Analysis from the BEACON Consortium.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katarina Lagergren

    Full Text Available The strong male predominance in oesophageal adenocarcinoma (OAC and Barrett's oesophagus (BO continues to puzzle. Hormonal influence, e.g. oestrogen or oxytocin, might contribute.This genetic-epidemiological study pooled 14 studies from three continents, Australia, Europe, and North America. Polymorphisms in 3 key genes coding for the oestrogen pathway (receptor alpha (ESR1, receptor beta (ESR2, and aromatase (CYP19A1, and 3 key genes of the oxytocin pathway (the oxytocin receptor (OXTR, oxytocin protein (OXT, and cyclic ADP ribose hydrolase glycoprotein (CD38, were analysed using a gene-based approach, versatile gene-based test association study (VEGAS.Among 1508 OAC patients, 2383 BO patients, and 2170 controls, genetic variants within ESR1 were associated with BO in males (p = 0.0058 and an increased risk of OAC and BO combined in males (p = 0.0023. Genetic variants within OXTR were associated with an increased risk of BO in both sexes combined (p = 0.0035 and in males (p = 0.0012. We followed up these suggestive findings in a further smaller data set, but found no replication. There were no significant associations between the other 4 genes studied and risk of OAC, BO, separately on in combination, in males and females combined or in males only.Genetic variants in the oestrogen receptor alpha and the oxytocin receptor may be associated with an increased risk of BO or OAC, but replication in other large samples are needed.

  20. Effects of Lutein on Hyperosmoticity-Induced Upregulation of IL-6 in Cultured Corneal Epithelial Cells and Its Relevant Signal Pathways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shih-Chun Chao

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Dry eye is a common disorder characterized by deficiency of tear. Hyperosmoticity of tear stimulates inflammation and damage of ocular surface tissues and plays an essential role in the pathogenesis of dry eye. Cultured human corneal epithelial (CE cells were used for the study of effects of lutein and hyperosmoticity on the secretion of IL-6 by CE cells. Cell viability of CE cells was not affected by lutein at 1–10 μM as determined by MTT assay. Hyperosmoticity significantly elevated the secretion of IL-6 by CE cells as measured by ELISA analysis. The constitutive secretion of IL-6 was not affected by lutein. Lutein significantly and dose-dependently inhibited hyperosmoticity-induced secretion of IL-6. Phosphorylated- (p- p38 MAPK, p-JNK levels in cell lysates and NF-κB levels in cell nuclear extracts were increased by being exposed to hyperosmotic medium. JNK, p38, and NF-κB inhibitors decreased hyperosmoticity-induced secretion of IL-6. Lutein significantly inhibited hyperosmoticity-induced elevation of NF-κB, p38, and p-JNK levels. We demonstrated that lutein inhibited hyperosmoticity-induced secretion of IL-6 in CE cells through the deactivation of p38, JNK, and NF-κB pathways. Lutein may be a promising agent to be explored for the treatment of dry eye.

  1. Relevance of targeting RET/PTC junction oncogene and Wnt/β-catenin pathway in the treatment of papillary thyroid carcinoma: skill of 8-year work

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Massaad-Massade L.

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC is the most common endocrine gland malignancy and occurs frequently due to the radiation exposure. PTC is characterized by the paracentric inversion in chromosome 10 leading to the fusion of RET with several genes present in thyroid named PTC. The RET/PTCs junction oncogenes are present in around 80 % of papillary thyroid carcinoma, the most frequent ones are RET/PTC1 and RET/PTC3. Interestingly, RET/PTCs are found only in the tumour cells and not in the surrounding normal tissues, therefore, they represent a good target for RNA interference strategies. We aimed, on the one hand, to inhibit dedifferentiation due to the RET/PTC junction oncogene by siRNA and, on the other hand, to investigate a role of Wnt/β-catenin pathway in the regulation of a tissue-specific transcription factor, the thyroid transcription factor-1 (TTF-1 essential for the differentiation of the thyroid. In this paper we summarised our main results obtained during eight years that pointed a new therapeutic strategy for papillary thyroid carcinoma.

  2. Exome sequencing and pathway analysis for identification of genetic variability relevant for bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) in preterm newborns: A pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrera, Paola; Di Resta, Chiara; Volonteri, Chiara; Castiglioni, Emanuela; Bonfiglio, Silvia; Lazarevic, Dejan; Cittaro, Davide; Stupka, Elia; Ferrari, Maurizio; Somaschini, Marco

    2015-12-07

    Bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) is the most common chronic lung disease in infancy, affecting preterm children with low birth weight. The disease has a multifactorial aetiology with a significant genetic component; until now published association studies have identified several candidate genes but only few of these data has been replicated. In this pilot study, we approached exome sequencing aimed at identifying non-common variants, which are expected to have a stronger phenotypic effect. We performed this study on 26 Italian severely affected BPD preterm unrelated newborns, homogeneously selected from a large prospective cohort. We used an Illumina HiSeq 2000 for sequencing. Data analysis was focussed on genes previously associated to BPD susceptibility and to new candidates in related pathways, highlighted by a prioritization analysis performed using ToppGene Suite. By exome sequencing, we identified 3369 novel variants, with a median of 400 variations per sample. The top candidate genes highlighted were NOS2, MMP1, CRP, LBP and the toll-like receptor (TLR) family. All of them have been confirmed with Sanger sequencing. Potential candidate genes have been discovered in this preliminary study; the pathogenic role of identified variants will need to be confirmed with functional and segregation studies and possibly with further methods, able to evaluate the collective influence of rare variants. Moreover, additional candidates will be tested and genetic analysis will be extended to all affected children. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Systems Biology-Based Identification of Crosstalk between E2F Transcription Factors and the Fanconi Anemia Pathway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moe Tategu

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Fanconi anemia (FA is an autosomal recessive disorder characterized by congenital abnormalities, bone marrow failure, chromosome fragility, and cancer susceptibility. At least eleven members of the FA gene family have been identified using complementation experiments. Ubiquitin-proteasome has been shown to be a key regulator of FA proteins and their involvement in the repair of DNA damage. Here, we identifi ed a novel functional link between the FA/BRCA pathway and E2F-mediated cell cycle regulome. In silico mining of a transcriptome database and promoter analyses revealed that a significant number of FA gene members were regulated by E2F transcription factors, known to be pivotal regulators of cell cycle progression – as previously described for BRCA1. Our findings suggest that E2Fs partly determine cell fate through the FA/BRCA pathway.

  4. Beyond prostaglandins - chemistry and biology of cyclic oxygenated metabolites formed by free-radical pathways from polyunsaturated fatty acids

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Jahn, Ullrich; Galano, J. M.; Durand, T.

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 47, č. 32 (2008), s. 5894-5955 ISSN 1433-7851 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z40550506 Keywords : biological activity * fatty acids * isoprostanes * oxidation * total synthesis Subject RIV: CC - Organic Chemistry Impact factor: 10.879, year: 2008

  5. Commonalities in Biological Pathways, Genetics, and Cellular Mechanism between Alzheimer Disease and Other Neurodegenerative Diseases: An In Silico-Updated Overview.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, Khurshid; Baig, Mohammad Hassan; Mushtaq, Gohar; Kamal, Mohammad Amjad; Greig, Nigel H; Choi, Inho

    2017-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common and well-studied neurodegenerative disease (ND). Biological pathways, pathophysiology and genetics of AD show commonalities with other NDs viz. Parkinson's disease (PD), Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Huntington's disease (HD), Prion disease and Dentatorubral-pallidoluysian atrophy (DRPLA). Many of the NDs, sharing the common features and molecular mechanisms suggest that pathology may be directly comparable and be implicated in disease prevention and development of highly effective therapies. In this review, a brief description of pathophysiology, clinical symptoms and available treatment of various NDs have been explored with special emphasis on AD. Commonalities in these fatal NDs provide support for therapeutic advancements and enhance the understanding of disease manifestation. The studies concentrating on the commonalities in biological pathways, cellular mechanisms and genetics may provide the scope to researchers to identify few novel common target(s) for disease prevention and development of effective common drugs for multi-neurodegenerative diseases. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  6. Profiling and functional data on the developing olfactory/GnRH system reveal cellular and molecular pathways essential for this process and potentially relevant for the Kallmann syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giulia eGaraffo

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available During embryonic development, immature neurons in the olfactory epithelium (OE extend axons through the nasal mesenchyme, to contact projection neurons in the olfactory bulb. Axon navigation is accompanied by migration of the GnRH+ neurons, which enter the anterior forebrain and home in the septo-hypothalamic area. This process can be interrupted at various points and lead to the onset of the Kallmann syndrome (KS, a disorder characterized by anosmia and central hypogonadotropic hypogonadism. Several genes has been identified in human and mice that cause KS or a KS-like phenotype. In mice a set of transcription factors appears to be required for olfactory connectivity and GnRH neuron migration; thus we explored the transcriptional network underlying this developmental process by profiling the OE and the adjacent mesenchyme at three embryonic ages. We also profiled the OE from embryos null for Dlx5, a homeogene that causes a KS-like phenotype when deleted. We identified 20 interesting genes belonging to the following categories: 1 transmembrane adhesion/receptor, 2 axon-glia interaction, 3 scaffold/adapter for signalling, 4 synaptic proteins. We tested some of them in zebrafish embryos: the depletion of five (of six Dlx5 targets affected axonal extension and targeting, while three (of three affected GnRH neuron position and neurite organization. Thus, we confirmed the importance of cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions and identified new molecules needed for olfactory connection and GnRH neuron migration. Using available and newly generated data, we predicted/prioritized putative KS-disease genes, by building conserved co-expression networks with all known disease genes in human and mouse. The results show the overall validity of approaches based on high-throughput data and predictive bioinformatics to identify genes potentially relevant for the molecular pathogenesis of KS. A number of candidate will be discussed, that should be tested in

  7. The MUC1 oncomucin regulates pancreatic cancer cell biological properties and chemoresistance. Implication of p42–44 MAPK, Akt, Bcl-2 and MMP13 pathways

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tréhoux, Solange; Duchêne, Bélinda; Jonckheere, Nicolas; Van Seuningen, Isabelle, E-mail: isabelle.vanseuningen@inserm.fr

    2015-01-16

    Highlights: • Loss of MUC1 decreases proliferation and tumor growth via β-catenin and p42–44 MAPK. • Inhibition of MUC1 decreases cell migration and invasion through MMP13. • Loss of MUC1 decreases survival and increases apoptosis via Akt and Bcl-2 pathways. • Loss of MUC1 sensitizes cells to gemcitabine and 5-Fluorouracil chemotherapeutic drugs. - Abstract: MUC1 is an oncogenic mucin overexpressed in several epithelial cancers, including pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma, and is considered as a potent target for cancer therapy. To this aim, we undertook to study MUC1 biological effects on pancreatic cancer cells and identify pathways mediating these effects. Our in vitro experiments indicate that inhibiting MUC1 expression decreases cell proliferation, cell migration and invasion, cell survival and increases cell apoptosis. Moreover, lack of MUC1 in these cells profoundly altered their sensitivity to gemcitabine and 5-Fluorouracil chemotherapeutic drugs. In vivo MUC1-KD cell xenografts in SCID mice grew slower. Altogether, we show that MUC1 oncogenic mucin alters proliferation, migration, and invasion properties of pancreatic cancer cells and that these effects are mediated by p42–44 MAPK, Akt, Bcl-2 and MMP13 pathways.

  8. Regulatory effect of evodiamine on the malignant biological behaviors and Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway of colorectal cancer cell lines HT29

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuan-Hui Wang

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To study the regulatory effect of evodiamine on the malignant biological behaviors and Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway of colorectal cancer cell lines HT29. Methods: Colorectal cancer cell lines HT29 were cultured and divided into blank control group and evodiamine group, and after different treatment, cell viability, proportion of different cell cycle as well as the contents of VEGFA, VEGFB, VEGFC, MMP3, MMP14, Wnt and β-catenin were detected. Results: (1 Cell viability: MTT value of evodiamine group was significantly lower than that of blank control group; (2 Cell cycle: proportion of both S phase and G2/M phase of evodiamine group were lower than those of blank control group, and proportion of G0/ G1 phase was higher than that of blank control group; (3 VEGF and MMP contents: VEGFA, VEGFB, VEGFC, MMP3 and MMP14 contents of evodiamine group were lower than those of blank control group; (4 Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway: Wnt and β-catenin contents of evodiamine group were lower than those of blank control group. Conclusion: Evodiamine can inhibit the proliferation of colorectal cancer cell lines HT29 and down-regulate the expression of VEGF and MMP, and the effect may be achieved by inhibiting the activation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway.

  9. The MUC1 oncomucin regulates pancreatic cancer cell biological properties and chemoresistance. Implication of p42–44 MAPK, Akt, Bcl-2 and MMP13 pathways

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tréhoux, Solange; Duchêne, Bélinda; Jonckheere, Nicolas; Van Seuningen, Isabelle

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • Loss of MUC1 decreases proliferation and tumor growth via β-catenin and p42–44 MAPK. • Inhibition of MUC1 decreases cell migration and invasion through MMP13. • Loss of MUC1 decreases survival and increases apoptosis via Akt and Bcl-2 pathways. • Loss of MUC1 sensitizes cells to gemcitabine and 5-Fluorouracil chemotherapeutic drugs. - Abstract: MUC1 is an oncogenic mucin overexpressed in several epithelial cancers, including pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma, and is considered as a potent target for cancer therapy. To this aim, we undertook to study MUC1 biological effects on pancreatic cancer cells and identify pathways mediating these effects. Our in vitro experiments indicate that inhibiting MUC1 expression decreases cell proliferation, cell migration and invasion, cell survival and increases cell apoptosis. Moreover, lack of MUC1 in these cells profoundly altered their sensitivity to gemcitabine and 5-Fluorouracil chemotherapeutic drugs. In vivo MUC1-KD cell xenografts in SCID mice grew slower. Altogether, we show that MUC1 oncogenic mucin alters proliferation, migration, and invasion properties of pancreatic cancer cells and that these effects are mediated by p42–44 MAPK, Akt, Bcl-2 and MMP13 pathways

  10. Ultraperformance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry based comprehensive metabolomics combined with pattern recognition and network analysis methods for characterization of metabolites and metabolic pathways from biological data sets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Ai-hua; Sun, Hui; Han, Ying; Yan, Guang-li; Yuan, Ye; Song, Gao-chen; Yuan, Xiao-xia; Xie, Ning; Wang, Xi-jun

    2013-08-06

    Metabolomics is the study of metabolic changes in biological systems and provides the small molecule fingerprints related to the disease. Extracting biomedical information from large metabolomics data sets by multivariate data analysis is of considerable complexity. Therefore, more efficient and optimizing metabolomics data processing technologies are needed to improve mass spectrometry applications in biomarker discovery. Here, we report the findings of urine metabolomic investigation of hepatitis C virus (HCV) patients by high-throughput ultraperformance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS) coupled with pattern recognition methods (principal component analysis, partial least-squares, and OPLS-DA) and network pharmacology. A total of 20 urinary differential metabolites (13 upregulated and 7 downregulated) were identified and contributed to HCV progress, involve several key metabolic pathways such as taurine and hypotaurine metabolism, glycine, serine and threonine metabolism, histidine metabolism, arginine and proline metabolism, and so forth. Metabolites identified through metabolic profiling may facilitate the development of more accurate marker algorithms to better monitor disease progression. Network analysis validated close contact between these metabolites and implied the importance of the metabolic pathways. Mapping altered metabolites to KEGG pathways identified alterations in a variety of biological processes mediated through complex networks. These findings may be promising to yield a valuable and noninvasive tool that insights into the pathophysiology of HCV and to advance the early diagnosis and monitor the progression of disease. Overall, this investigation illustrates the power of the UPLC-MS platform combined with the pattern recognition and network analysis methods that can engender new insights into HCV pathobiology.

  11. KeyPathwayMiner - De-novo network enrichment by combining multiple OMICS data and biological networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Baumbach, Jan; Alcaraz, Nicolas; Pauling, Josch K.

    studied. The exact quantities for ``mainly'' and ``most'' are modeled with two easy-to-interpret parameters that allow the user to control the number of outliers (not dysregulated genes/cases) in the solutions. We developed two slightly varying models that fall into the class of NP-Hard optimization...... problems and designed a set of algorithms to tackle the combinatorial explosion of the search space. During the presentation we will demonstrate how to: Import and process the data, set the parameters for the two models, compute and visualize the key pathways, judge and statistically evaluate the results...

  12. Exploration of potential biomarkers and related biological pathways for PCB exposure in maternal and cord serum: A pilot birth cohort study in Chiba, Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eguchi, Akifumi; Sakurai, Kenichi; Watanabe, Masahiro; Mori, Chisato

    2017-05-01

    Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) have been associated with adverse human reproductive and fetal developmental measures or outcomes because of their endocrine-disrupting effects; however, the biological mechanisms of adverse effects of PCB exposure in humans are not currently well established. In this study, we aimed to identify the biological pathways and potential biomarkers of PCB exposure in maternal and umbilical cord serum using a hydrophilic interaction chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (HILIC-MS/MS) metabolomics platform. The median concentration of total PCBs in maternal (n=93) and cord serum (n=93) were 350 and 70pgg -1 wet wt, respectively. PCB levels in maternal and fetal serum from the Chiba Study of Mother and Children's Health (C-MACH) cohort are comparable to those of earlier cohort studies conducted in Japan, the USA, and European countries. We used the random forest model with the metabolome profile to predict exposure levels of PCB (first quartile [Q1] and fourth quartile [Q4]) for pregnant women and fetuses. In the prediction model for classification of Q1 versus Q4 (area-under-curve [AUC]: pregnant women=0.812 and fetuses=0.919), citraconic acid level in maternal serum and ethanolamine, p-hydroxybenzoate, and purine levels in cord serum had >0.70 AUC values. These candidate biomarkers and metabolite included in composited models were related to glutathione and amino acid metabolism in maternal serum and the amino acid metabolism and ubiquinone and other terpenoid-quinone biosynthesis in cord serum (FDR PCB exposure in pregnant women and fetuses. These results showed that metabolome analysis might be useful to explore potential biomarkers and related biological pathways for PCB exposure. Thus, more detailed studies are needed to verify sensitivity of the biomarkers and clarify the biochemical changes resulting from PCB exposure. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  13. Role of quantity of additional food to predators as a control in predator-prey systems with relevance to pest management and biological conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srinivasu, P D N; Prasad, B S R V

    2011-10-01

    Necessity to understand the role of additional food as a tool in biological control programs is being increasingly felt, particularly due to its eco-friendly nature. A thorough mathematical analysis in this direction revealed the vital role of quality and quantity of the additional food in the controllability of the predator-prey systems. In this article controllability of the additional food--provided predator-prey system is studied from perspectives of pest eradication and biological conservation. Time optimal paths have been constructed to drive the state of the system to a desired terminal state by choosing quantity of the additional food as control variable. The theory developed in this article has been illustrated by solving problems related to pest eradication and biological conservation.

  14. Psychological and biological responses to race-based social stress as pathways to disparities in educational outcomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, Dorainne J; Heissel, Jennifer A; Richeson, Jennifer A; Adam, Emma K

    2016-09-01

    We present the race-based disparities in stress and sleep in context model (RDSSC), which argues that racial/ethnic disparities in educational achievement and attainment are partially explained by the effects of race-based stressors, such as stereotype threat and perceived discrimination, on psychological and biological responses to stress, which, in turn, impact cognitive functioning and academic performance. Whereas the roles of psychological coping responses, such as devaluation and disidentification, have been theorized in previous work, the present model integrates the roles of biological stress responses, such as changes in stress hormones and sleep hours and quality, to this rich literature. We situate our model of the impact of race-based stress in the broader contexts of other stressors [e.g., stressors associated with socioeconomic status (SES)], developmental histories of stress, and individual and group differences in access to resources, opportunity and employment structures. Considering both psychological and biological responses to race-based stressors, in social contexts, will yield a more comprehensive understanding of the emergence of academic disparities between Whites and racial/ethnic minorities. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  15. Cellular Signaling Pathways in Insulin Resistance-Systems Biology Analyses of Microarray Dataset Reveals New Drug Target Gene Signatures of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muhammad, Syed Aun; Raza, Waseem; Nguyen, Thanh; Bai, Baogang; Wu, Xiaogang; Chen, Jake

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is a chronic and metabolic disorder affecting large set of population of the world. To widen the scope of understanding of genetic causes of this disease, we performed interactive and toxicogenomic based systems biology study to find potential T2DM related genes after cDNA differential analysis. Methods: From the list of 50-differential expressed genes ( p T2DM related genes using extensive data mapping. In our constructed gene-network, T2DM-related differentially expressed seeder genes (9-genes) are found to interact with functionally related gene signatures (31-genes). The genetic interaction network of both T2DM-associated seeder as well as signature genes generally relates well with the disease condition based on toxicogenomic and data curation. Results: These networks showed significant enrichment of insulin signaling, insulin secretion and other T2DM-related pathways including JAK-STAT, MAPK, TGF, Toll-like receptor, p53 and mTOR, adipocytokine, FOXO, PPAR, P13-AKT, and triglyceride metabolic pathways. We found some enriched pathways that are common in different conditions. We recognized 11-signaling pathways as a connecting link between gene signatures in insulin resistance and T2DM. Notably, in the drug-gene network, the interacting genes showed significant overlap with 13-FDA approved and few non-approved drugs. This study demonstrates the value of systems genetics for identifying 18 potential genes associated with T2DM that are probable drug targets. Conclusions: This integrative and network based approaches for finding variants in genomic data expect to accelerate identification of new drug target molecules for different diseases and can speed up drug discovery outcomes.

  16. Transcriptional profiling and biological pathway analysis of human equivalence PCB exposure in vitro: indicator of disease and disorder development in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghosh, Somiranjan; Mitra, Partha S; Loffredo, Christopher A; Trnovec, Tomas; Murinova, Lubica; Sovcikova, Eva; Ghimbovschi, Svetlana; Zang, Shizhu; Hoffman, Eric P; Dutta, Sisir K

    2015-04-01

    Our earlier gene-expression studies with a Slovak PCBs-exposed population have revealed possible disease and disorder development in accordance with epidemiological studies. The present investigation aimed to develop an in vitro model system that can provide an indication of disrupted biological pathways associated with developing future diseases, well in advance of the clinical manifestations that may take years to appear in the actual human exposure scenario. We used human Primary Blood Mononuclear Cells (PBMC) and exposed them to a mixture of human equivalence levels of PCBs (PCB-118, -138, -153, -170, -180) as found in the PCBs-exposed Slovak population. The microarray studies of global gene expression were conducted on the Affymetrix platform using Human Genome U133 Plus 2.0 Array along with Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA) to associate the affected genes with their mechanistic pathways. High-throughput qRT-PCR Taqman Low Density Array (TLDA) was done to further validate the selected 6 differentially expressed genes of our interest, viz., ARNT, CYP2D6, LEPR, LRP12, RRAD, TP53, with a small population validation sample (n=71). Overall, we revealed a discreet gene expression profile in the experimental model that resembled the diseases and disorders observed in PCBs-exposed population studies. The disease pathways included endocrine system disorders, genetic disorders, metabolic diseases, developmental disorders, and cancers, strongly consistent with the evidence from epidemiological studies. These gene finger prints could lead to the identification of populations and subgroups at high risk for disease, and can pose as early disease biomarkers well ahead of time, before the actual disease becomes visible. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Multivariate imaging-genetics study of MRI gray matter volume and SNPs reveals biological pathways correlated with brain structural differences in Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabin Khadka

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Background: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD is a prevalent neurodevelopmental disorder affecting children, adolescents, and adults. Its etiology is not well-understood, but it is increasingly believed to result from diverse pathophysiologies that affect the structure and function of specific brain circuits. Although one of the best-studied neurobiological abnormalities in ADHD is reduced fronto-striatal-cerebellar gray matter volume, its specific genetic correlates are largely unknown. Methods: In this study, T1-weighted MR images of brain structure were collected from 198 adolescents (63 ADHD-diagnosed. A multivariate parallel independent component analysis technique (Para-ICA identified imaging-genetic relationships between regional gray matter volume and single nucleotide polymorphism data. Results: Para-ICA analyses extracted 14 components from genetic data and 9 from MR data. An iterative cross-validation using randomly-chosen sub-samples indicated acceptable stability of these ICA solutions. A series of partial correlation analyses controlling for age, sex, and ethnicity revealed two genotype-phenotype component pairs significantly differed between ADHD and non-ADHD groups, after a Bonferroni correction for multiple comparisons. The brain phenotype component not only included structures frequently found to have abnormally low volume in previous ADHD studies, but was also significantly associated with ADHD differences in symptom severity and performance on cognitive tests frequently found to be impaired in patients diagnosed with the disorder. Pathway analysis of the genotype component identified several different biological pathways linked to these structural abnormalities in ADHD. Conclusions: Some of these pathways implicate well-known dopaminergic neurotransmission and neurodevelopment hypothesized to be abnormal in ADHD. Other more recently implicated pathways included glutamatergic and GABA-eric physiological systems

  18. Co-introduction vs ecological fitting as pathways to the establishment of effective mutualisms during biological invasions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Roux, Johannes J; Hui, Cang; Keet, Jan-Hendrik; Ellis, Allan G

    2017-09-01

    Contents 1354 I. 1354 II. 1355 III. 1357 IV. 1357 V. 1359 1359 References 1359 SUMMARY: Interactions between non-native plants and their mutualists are often disrupted upon introduction to new environments. Using legume-rhizobium mutualistic interactions as an example, we discuss two pathways that can influence symbiotic associations in such situations: co-introduction of coevolved rhizobia; and utilization of, and adaptation to, resident rhizobia, hereafter referred to as 'ecological fitting'. Co-introduction and ecological fitting have distinct implications for successful legume invasions and their impacts. Under ecological fitting, initial impacts may be less severe and will accrue over longer periods as novel symbiotic associations and/or adaptations may require fine-tuning over time. Co-introduction will have more profound impacts that will accrue more rapidly as a result of positive feedbacks between densities of non-native rhizobia and their coevolved host plants, in turn enhancing competition between native and non-native rhizobia. Co-introduction can further impact invasion outcomes by the exchange of genetic material between native and non-native rhizobia, potentially resulting in decreased fitness of native legumes. A better understanding of the roles of these two pathways in the invasion dynamics of non-native legumes is much needed, and we highlight some of the exciting research avenues it presents. © 2017 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  19. Robust de novo pathway enrichment with KeyPathwayMiner 5

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alcaraz, Nicolas; List, Markus; Dissing-Hansen, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Identifying functional modules or novel active pathways, recently termed de novo pathway enrichment, is a computational systems biology challenge that has gained much attention during the last decade. Given a large biological interaction network, KeyPathwayMiner extracts connected subnetworks tha...... several network perturbation techniques and over a range of perturbation degrees. In addition, users may now provide a gold-standard set to determine how enriched extracted pathways are with relevant genes compared to randomized versions of the original network.......Identifying functional modules or novel active pathways, recently termed de novo pathway enrichment, is a computational systems biology challenge that has gained much attention during the last decade. Given a large biological interaction network, KeyPathwayMiner extracts connected subnetworks...... that are enriched for differentially active entities from a series of molecular profiles encoded as binary indicator matrices. Since interaction networks constantly evolve, an important question is how robust the extracted results are when the network is modified. We enable users to study this effect through...

  20. PathNet: a tool for pathway analysis using topological information

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dutta Bhaskar

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Identification of canonical pathways through enrichment of differentially expressed genes in a given pathway is a widely used method for interpreting gene lists generated from high-throughput experimental studies. However, most algorithms treat pathways as sets of genes, disregarding any inter- and intra-pathway connectivity information, and do not provide insights beyond identifying lists of pathways. Results We developed an algorithm (PathNet that utilizes the connectivity information in canonical pathway descriptions to help identify study-relevant pathways and characterize non-obvious dependencies and connections among pathways using gene expression data. PathNet considers both the differential expression of genes and their pathway neighbors to strengthen the evidence that a pathway is implicated in the biological conditions characterizing the experiment. As an adjunct to this analysis, PathNet uses the connectivity of the differentially expressed genes among all pathways to score pathway contextual associations and statistically identify biological relations among pathways. In this study, we used PathNet to identify biologically relevant results in two Alzheimer’s disease microarray datasets, and compared its performance with existing methods. Importantly, PathNet identified de-regulation of the ubiquitin-mediated proteolysis pathway as an important component in Alzheimer’s disease progression, despite the absence of this pathway in the standard enrichment analyses. Conclusions PathNet is a novel method for identifying enrichment and association between canonical pathways in the context of gene expression data. It takes into account topological information present in pathways to reveal biological information. PathNet is available as an R workspace image from http://www.bhsai.org/downloads/pathnet/.

  1. Finding metabolic pathways using atom tracking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heath, Allison P.; Bennett, George N.; Kavraki, Lydia E.

    2010-01-01

    Motivation: Finding novel or non-standard metabolic pathways, possibly spanning multiple species, has important applications in fields such as metabolic engineering, metabolic network analysis and metabolic network reconstruction. Traditionally, this has been a manual process, but the large volume of metabolic data now available has created a need for computational tools to automatically identify biologically relevant pathways. Results: We present new algorithms for finding metabolic pathways, given a desired start and target compound, that conserve a given number of atoms by tracking the movement of atoms through metabolic networks containing thousands of compounds and reactions. First, we describe an algorithm that identifies linear pathways. We then present a new algorithm for finding branched metabolic pathways. Comparisons to known metabolic pathways demonstrate that atom tracking enables our algorithms to avoid many unrealistic connections, often found in previous approaches, and return biologically meaningful pathways. Our results also demonstrate the potential of the algorithms to find novel or non-standard pathways that may span multiple organisms. Availability: The software is freely available for academic use at: http://www.kavrakilab.org/atommetanet Contact: kavraki@rice.edu Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:20421197

  2. Immunolocalisation of members of the polypeptide N-acetylgalactosaminyl transferase (ppGalNAc-T) family is consistent with biologically relevant altered cell surface glycosylation in breast cancer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brooks, Susan A; Carter, Tracey M; Bennett, Eric P

    2007-01-01

    understood, may mediate the synthesis of varied glycoforms of cellular proteins with different biological activities. Disruptions in glycosylation are a common feature of cancer and may have functional significance. Immunocytochemistry with confocal scanning laser microscopy was employed to detect members...... of the ppGalNAc-T family, ppGalNAc-T1, -T2, -T3, -T4 and -T6 in a range of breast cell lines. The cells were chosen to represent a range of phenotypes from 'normal'/benign (HMT 3,522), primary, non-metastatic breast cancer (BT 474), to aggressive, metastatic breast cancer (ZR75-1, T47D, MCF-7, DU 4...... tightly restricted ppGalNAc-T's may result in initiation of O-linked glycosylation at normally unoccupied potential glycosylation sites leading to altered glycoforms of proteins with changed biological activity which may contribute to the pathogenesis of cancer....

  3. The perlecan heparan sulfate proteoglycan mediates cellular uptake of HIV-1 Tat through a pathway responsible for biological activity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cell surface heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs) mediate internalization of HIV-1 Tat. Herein, we report that human WiDr cells, which express perlecan but no other HSPGs, can internalize 125 I-labeled Tat with minimal lysosomal degradation. Pre-treatment of cells with heparitinase almost completely abolished 125 I-Tat surface binding, while the use of an HIV-1 long terminal repeat (LTR) promoter-reporter construct demonstrated that transactivation was potently blocked by pretreatment of cells with heparitinase, indicating an essential role for perlecan in the biologic effects of Tat. We conclude that the perlecan mediates Tat uptake and is required for HIV-1 LTR-directed transactivation in this human cell type

  4. Robust de novo pathway enrichment with KeyPathwayMiner 5 [version 1; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Alcaraz

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Identifying functional modules or novel active pathways, recently termed de novo pathway enrichment, is a computational systems biology challenge that has gained much attention during the last decade. Given a large biological interaction network, KeyPathwayMiner extracts connected subnetworks that are enriched for differentially active entities from a series of molecular profiles encoded as binary indicator matrices. Since interaction networks constantly evolve, an important question is how robust the extracted results are when the network is modified. We enable users to study this effect through several network perturbation techniques and over a range of perturbation degrees. In addition, users may now provide a gold-standard set to determine how enriched extracted pathways are with relevant genes compared to randomized versions of the original network.

  5. Integrative analysis of hepatic microRNA and mRNA to identify potential biological pathways associated with monocrotaline-induced liver injury in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Zhenlin; Chen, Minwei; Zhang, Jiaqi; Sheng, Yuchen; Ji, Lili

    2017-10-15

    Pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs) are a type of natural hepatotoxic compounds. Monocrotaline (MCT), belongs to PAs, is a main compound distributed in medicinal herb Crotalaria ferruginea Grah. ex Benth. This study aims to identify the potential biological signaling pathway associated with MCT-induced liver injury by analyzing the integrative altered hepatic microRNA (miRNA) and mRNA expression profile. C57BL/6 mice were orally given with MCT (270, 330mg/kg). Serum alanine/aspartate aminotransferase (ALT/AST) activity, total bilirubin (TBil) amount and liver histological evaluation showed the liver injury induced by MCT. Results of miRNA chip analysis showed that the hepatic expression of 15 miRNAs (whose signal intensity>200) was significantly altered in MCT-treated mice, and among them total 11 miRNAs passed further validation by using Real-time PCR assay. Results of mRNA chip analysis demonstrated that the hepatic expression of 569 genes was up-regulated and of other 417 genes was down-regulated in MCT-treated mice. There are total 426 predicted target genes of those above altered 11 miRNAs, and among them total 10 genes were also altered in mice treated with both MCT (270mg/kg) and MCT (330mg/kg) from the results of mRNA chip. Among these above 10 genes, total 8 genes passed further validation by using Real-time PCR assay. Only 1 biological signaling pathway was annotated by using those above 8 genes, which is phagosome. In conclusion, this study demonstrated the integrative altered expression profile of liver miRNA and mRNA, and identified that innate immunity may be critically involved in MCT-induced liver injury in mice. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Multi-species, multi-transcription factor binding highlights conserved control of tissue-specific biological pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballester, Benoit; Medina-Rivera, Alejandra; Schmidt, Dominic; Gonzàlez-Porta, Mar; Carlucci, Matthew; Chen, Xiaoting; Chessman, Kyle; Faure, Andre J; Funnell, Alister PW; Goncalves, Angela; Kutter, Claudia; Lukk, Margus; Menon, Suraj; McLaren, William M; Stefflova, Klara; Watt, Stephen; Weirauch, Matthew T; Crossley, Merlin; Marioni, John C; Odom, Duncan T; Flicek, Paul; Wilson, Michael D

    2014-01-01

    As exome sequencing gives way to genome sequencing, the need to interpret the function of regulatory DNA becomes increasingly important. To test whether evolutionary conservation of cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) gives insight into human gene regulation, we determined transcription factor (TF) binding locations of four liver-essential TFs in liver tissue from human, macaque, mouse, rat, and dog. Approximately, two thirds of the TF-bound regions fell into CRMs. Less than half of the human CRMs were found as a CRM in the orthologous region of a second species. Shared CRMs were associated with liver pathways and disease loci identified by genome-wide association studies. Recurrent rare human disease causing mutations at the promoters of several blood coagulation and lipid metabolism genes were also identified within CRMs shared in multiple species. This suggests that multi-species analyses of experimentally determined combinatorial TF binding will help identify genomic regions critical for tissue-specific gene control. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.02626.001 PMID:25279814

  7. Molecular biology of human epidermal receptors, signaling pathways and targeted therapy against cancers: new evidences and old challenges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paulo Michel Pinheiro Ferreira

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Human epidermal receptors (HER1/2/3/4 belong to the class of receptor-type tyrosine kinases. After binding a ligand, dimerization, it will ocurr activation of intracellular kinases after two-dimensional and cytoplasmic tail reciprocal transphosphorylation. This transphosphorylation recruits signaling pathways such as Ras/Raf/MEK/Erk1-2, PI3-K/AKT and JAK/STAT, which can affect the cell cycle, cytoskeleton reorganization, apoptosis, metastasis, differentiation, angiogenesis and transcription. HER deregulation is found in epithelial, mesenchymal and nervous neoplasms and is associated with poor prognosis and tumor severity. Since HER are promiscuous proteins when subjected to mutations, resultant modifications confer cellular metabolic superiority and activate complex, interconnected and overlapping networks of cytoplasmic signaling. Moreover, overexpression of HER1/2 is involved in tumor resistance to radiation and anti-hormone therapies. Indeed, HER2 expression is up to 100-fold higher in 25-30% of invasive breast cancers. These characteristics support the development of resistance to anti-HER1/2 chemotherapy such as monoclonal antibodies and tyrosine kinase inhibitors. Then, the challenges in research with HER-positive cancers include planning therapeutic strategies against known resistance mechanisms and identifying novel mechanisms as a way to overcome and control cell growth and malignant progression.

  8. From Hans Selye's discovery of biological stress to the identification of corticotropin-releasing factor signaling pathways: implication in stress-related functional bowel diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taché, Yvette; Brunnhuber, Stefan

    2008-12-01

    Selye pioneered the concept of biological stress in 1936, culminating in the identification of the corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) signaling pathways by Vale's group in the last two decades. The characterization of the 41 amino-acid CRF and other peptide members of the mammalian CRF family, urocortin 1, urocortin 2, and urocortin 3, and the cloning of CRF(1) and CRF(2) receptors, which display distinct affinity for CRF ligands, combined with the development of selective CRF receptor antagonists enable us to unravel the importance of CRF(1) receptor in the stress-related endocrine (activation of pituitary-adrenal axis), behavioral (anxiety/depression, altered feeding), autonomic (activation of sympathetic nervous system), and immune responses. The activation of CRF(1) receptors is also one of the key mechanisms through which various stressors impact the gut to stimulate colonic propulsive motor function and to induce hypersensitivity to colorectal distension as shown by the efficacy of the CRF(1) receptor antagonists in blunting these stress-related components. The importance of CRF(1) signaling pathway in the visceral response to stress in experimental animals provided new therapeutic approaches for treatment of functional bowel disorder such as irritable bowel syndrome, a multifactor functional disorder characterized by altered bowel habits and visceral pain, for which stress has been implicated in the pathophysiology and is associated with anxiety-depression in a subset of patients.

  9. Network-Based Identification of Biomarkers Coexpressed with Multiple Pathways

    OpenAIRE

    Guo, Nancy Lan; Wan, Ying-Wooi

    2014-01-01

    Unraveling complex molecular interactions and networks and incorporating clinical information in modeling will present a paradigm shift in molecular medicine. Embedding biological relevance via modeling molecular networks and pathways has become increasingly important for biomarker identification in cancer susceptibility and metastasis studies. Here, we give a comprehensive overview of computational methods used for biomarker identification, and provide a performance comparison of several net...

  10. Diversity, biological roles and biosynthetic pathways for sugar-glycerate containing compatible solutes in bacteria and archaea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Empadinhas, Nuno; da Costa, Milton S

    2011-08-01

    A decade ago the compatible solutes mannosylglycerate (MG) and glucosylglycerate (GG) were considered to be rare in nature. Apart from two species of thermophilic bacteria, Thermus thermophilus and Rhodothermus marinus, and a restricted group of hyperthermophilic archaea, the Thermococcales, MG had only been identified in a few red algae. Glucosylglycerate was considered to be even rarer and had only been detected as an insignificant solute in two halophilic microorganisms, a cyanobacterium, as a component of a polysaccharide and of a glycolipid in two actinobacteria. Unlike the hyper/thermophilic MG-accumulating microorganisms, branching close to the root of the Tree of Life, those harbouring GG shared a mesophilic lifestyle. Exceptionally, the thermophilic bacterium Persephonella marina was reported to accumulate GG. However, and especially owing to the identification of the key-genes for MG and GG synthesis and to the escalating numbers of genomes available, a plethora of new organisms with the resources to synthesize these solutes has been recognized. The accumulation of GG as an 'emergency' compatible solute under combined salt stress and nitrogen-deficient conditions now seems to be a disseminated survival strategy from enterobacteria to marine cyanobacteria. In contrast, the thermophilic and extremely radiation-resistant bacterium Rubrobacter xylanophilus is the only actinobacterium known to accumulate MG, and under all growth conditions tested. This review addresses the environmental factors underlying the accumulation of MG, GG and derivatives in bacteria and archaea and their roles during stress adaptation or as precursors for more elaborated macromolecules. The diversity of pathways for MG and GG synthesis as well as those for some of their derivatives is also discussed. The importance of glycerate-derived organic solutes in the microbial world is only now being recognized. Their stress-dependent accumulation and the molecular aspects of their

  11. Metabolic Reconstruction of Setaria italica: A Systems Biology Approach for Integrating Tissue-Specific Omics and Pathway Analysis of Bioenergy Grasses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Oliveira Dal'Molin, Cristiana G; Orellana, Camila; Gebbie, Leigh; Steen, Jennifer; Hodson, Mark P; Chrysanthopoulos, Panagiotis; Plan, Manuel R; McQualter, Richard; Palfreyman, Robin W; Nielsen, Lars K

    2016-01-01

    The urgent need for major gains in industrial crops productivity and in biofuel production from bioenergy grasses have reinforced attention on understanding C4 photosynthesis. Systems biology studies of C4 model plants may reveal important features of C4 metabolism. Here we chose foxtail millet (Setaria italica), as a C4 model plant and developed protocols to perform systems biology studies. As part of the systems approach, we have developed and used a genome-scale metabolic reconstruction in combination with the use of multi-omics technologies to gain more insights into the metabolism of S. italica. mRNA, protein, and metabolite abundances, were measured in mature and immature stem/leaf phytomers, and the multi-omics data were integrated into the metabolic reconstruction framework to capture key metabolic features in different developmental stages of the plant. RNA-Seq reads were mapped to the S. italica resulting for 83% coverage of the protein coding genes of S. italica. Besides revealing similarities and differences in central metabolism of mature and immature tissues, transcriptome analysis indicates significant gene expression of two malic enzyme isoforms (NADP- ME and NAD-ME). Although much greater expression levels of NADP-ME genes are observed and confirmed by the correspondent protein abundances in the samples, the expression of multiple genes combined to the significant abundance of metabolites that participates in C4 metabolism of NAD-ME and NADP-ME subtypes suggest that S. italica may use mixed decarboxylation modes of C4 photosynthetic pathways under different plant developmental stages. The overall analysis also indicates different levels of regulation in mature and immature tissues in carbon fixation, glycolysis, TCA cycle, amino acids, fatty acids, lignin, and cellulose syntheses. Altogether, the multi-omics analysis reveals different biological entities and their interrelation and regulation over plant development. With this study, we demonstrated

  12. Metabolic reconstruction of Setaria italica: a systems biology approach for integrating tissue-specific omics and pathway analysis of bioenergy grasses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristiana Gomes De Oliveira Dal'molin

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The urgent need for major gains in industrial crops productivity and in biofuel production from bioenergy grasses have reinforced attention on understanding C4 photosynthesis. Systems biology studies of C4 model plants may reveal important features of C4 metabolism. Here we chose foxtail millet (Setaria italica, as a C4 model plant and developed protocols to perform systems biology studies. As part of the systems approach, we have developed and used a genome-scale metabolic reconstruction in combination with the use of multi-omics technologies to gain more insights into the metabolism of S.italica. mRNA, protein and metabolite abundances, were measured in mature and immature stem/leaf phytomers and the multi-omics data were integrated into the metabolic reconstruction framework to capture key metabolic features in different developmental stages of the plant. RNA-Seq reads were mapped to the S. italica resulting for 83% coverage of the protein coding genes of S. italica. Besides revealing similarities and differences in central metabolism of mature and immature tissues, transcriptome analysis indicates significant gene expression of two malic enzyme isoforms (NADP- ME and NAD-ME. Although much greater expression levels of NADP-ME genes are observed and confirmed by the correspondent protein abundances in the samples, the expression of multiple genes combined to the significant abundance of metabolites that participates in C4 metabolism of NAD-ME and NADP-ME subtypes suggest that S. italica may use mixed decarboxylation modes of C4 photosynthetic pathways under different plant developmental stages. The overall analysis also indicates different levels of regulation in mature and immature tissues in carbon fixation, glycolysis, TCA cycle, amino acids, fatty acids, lignin and cellulose syntheses. Altogether, the multi-omics analysis reveals different biological entities and their interrelation and regulation over plant development. With this study

  13. Elements determination of clinical relevance in biological tissues Dmd{sup mdx}/J dystrophic mice strains investigated by NAA; Determinacao de elementos de relevancia clinica em tecidos biologicos de camundongos distroficos Dmd{sup mdx}/J por AAN

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Metairon, Sabrina

    2012-07-01

    In this work the determination of chemistry elements in biological tissues (whole blood, bones and organs) of dystrophic mice, used as animal model of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), was performed using analytical nuclear technique. The aim of this work was to determine reference values of elements of clinical (Ca, Cl, K, Mg, Na) and nutritional (Br and S) relevance in whole blood, tibia, quadriceps and hearts from Dmdmdx/J (10 males and 10 females) dystrophic mice and C57BL/6J (10 males) control group mice, using Neutron Activation Analysis technique (NAA). To show in more details the alterations that this disease may cause in these biological tissues, correlations matrixes of the DMD{sup mdx}/J mouse strain were generated and compared with C57BL/6J control group. For this study 119 samples of biological tissue were irradiated in the IEA-R1 nuclear reactor at IPEN (Sao Paulo, Brazil). The concentrations of these elements in biological tissues of Dmd{sup mdx}/J and C57B/6J mice are the first indicative interval for reference values. Moreover, the alteration in some correlation coefficients data among the elements in the health status and in the diseased status indicates a connection between these elements in whole blood, tibia, quadriceps and heart. These results may help the researchers to evaluate the efficiency of new treatments and to compare the advantages of different treatment approaches before performing tests in patients with muscular dystrophy. (author)

  14. An investigation into adult nursing students' experience of the relevance and application of behavioural sciences (biology, psychology and sociology) across two different curricula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mowforth, Gillian; Harrison, Judy; Morris, Marianne

    2005-01-01

    Curriculum development for nurse education is constantly changing to reflect the sociopolitical context and medical advancement. Throughout this process the contribution of the behavioural sciences to each curriculum has been widely debated. Nurse educators encourage students to acquire and develop academic knowledge to underpin their practical skills and professional competencies. However with new political agendas science content within the new curricula is being marginalised, [United Kingdom Central Council for Nursing Midwifery and Health Visiting, 1999. Fitness for Practice. London, UKCC]. This qualitative study investigated adult branch nursing students' experiences of the behavioural sciences while studying two different curricula: one a new integrated delivery of the sciences, the other involving discrete science modules. The study utilised focus group interviews at two distinct phases of their courses: 12-18 and 24-30 months. Each interview was tape recorded, transcribed verbatim and inductive thematic analysis [Hayes, N., 1997. Doing Qualitative Analysis in Psychology. Psychology Press Erlbaum Taylor & Francis Ltd.] was applied. This article reports the findings and discusses the relevance of the sciences to students and their patient care, and how the sciences underpin their view of health and illness.

  15. A MATLAB tool for pathway enrichment using a topology-based pathway regulation score.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibrahim, Maysson; Jassim, Sabah; Cawthorne, Michael Anthony; Langlands, Kenneth

    2014-11-04

    Handling the vast amount of gene expression data generated by genome-wide transcriptional profiling techniques is a challenging task, demanding an informed combination of pre-processing, filtering and analysis methods if meaningful biological conclusions are to be drawn. For example, a range of traditional statistical and computational pathway analysis approaches have been used to identify over-represented processes in microarray data derived from various disease states. However, most of these approaches tend not to exploit the full spectrum of gene expression data, or the various relationships and dependencies. Previously, we described a pathway enrichment analysis tool created in MATLAB that yields a Pathway Regulation Score (PRS) by considering signalling pathway topology, and the overrepresentation and magnitude of differentially-expressed genes (J Comput Biol 19:563-573, 2012). Herein, we extended this approach to include metabolic pathways, and described the use of a graphical user interface (GUI). Using input from a variety of microarray platforms and species, users are able to calculate PRS scores, along with a corresponding z-score for comparison. Further pathway significance assessment may be performed to increase confidence in the pathways obtained, and users can view Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathway diagrams marked-up to highlight impacted genes. The PRS tool provides a filter in the isolation of biologically-relevant insights from complex transcriptomic data.

  16. Solar ultraviolet radiation induces biological alterations in human skin in vitro: relevance of a well-balanced UVA/UVB protection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernerd, Francoise; Marionnet, Claire; Duval, Christine

    2012-06-01

    Cutaneous damages such as sunburn, pigmentation, and photoaging are known to be induced by acute as well as repetitive sun exposure. Not only for basic research, but also for the design of the most efficient photoprotection, it is crucial to understand and identify the early biological events occurring after ultraviolet (UV) exposure. Reconstructed human skin models provide excellent and reliable in vitro tools to study the UV-induced alterations of the different skin cell types, keratinocytes, fibroblasts, and melanocytes in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Using different in vitro human skin models, the effects of UV light (UVB and UVA) were investigated. UVB-induced damages are essentially epidermal, with the typical sunburn cells and DNA lesions, whereas UVA radiation-induced damages are mostly located within the dermal compartment. Pigmentation can also be obtained after solar simulated radiation exposure of pigmented reconstructed skin model. Those models are also highly adequate to assess the potential of sunscreens to protect the skin from UV-associated damage, sunburn reaction, photoaging, and pigmentation. The results showed that an effective photoprotection is provided by broad-spectrum sunscreens with a potent absorption in both UVB and UVA ranges.

  17. Solar ultraviolet radiation induces biological alterations in human skin in vitro: Relevance of a well-balanced UVA/UVB protection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Françoise Bernerd

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Cutaneous damages such as sunburn, pigmentation, and photoaging are known to be induced by acute as well as repetitive sun exposure. Not only for basic research, but also for the design of the most efficient photoprotection, it is crucial to understand and identify the early biological events occurring after ultraviolet (UV exposure. Reconstructed human skin models provide excellent and reliable in vitro tools to study the UV-induced alterations of the different skin cell types, keratinocytes, fibroblasts, and melanocytes in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Using different in vitro human skin models, the effects of UV light (UVB and UVA were investigated. UVB-induced damages are essentially epidermal, with the typical sunburn cells and DNA lesions, whereas UVA radiation-induced damages are mostly located within the dermal compartment. Pigmentation can also be obtained after solar simulated radiation exposure of pigmented reconstructed skin model. Those models are also highly adequate to assess the potential of sunscreens to protect the skin from UV-associated damage, sunburn reaction, photoaging, and pigmentation. The results showed that an effective photoprotection is provided by broad-spectrum sunscreens with a potent absorption in both UVB and UVA ranges.

  18. Using Vitek MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry to identify species belonging to the Acinetobacter calcoaceticus-Acinetobacter baumannii complex: a relevant alternative to molecular biology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pailhoriès, Hélène; Daure, Sophie; Eveillard, Matthieu; Joly-Guillou, Marie-Laure; Kempf, Marie

    2015-10-01

    Acinetobacter baumannii belongs to the Acinetobacter calcoaceticus-baumannii complex (Acb) containing 2 other pathogenic species: Acinetobacter pittii and Acinetobacter nosocomialis. Identification of these bacteria remains problematic despite the use of matrix-assisted laser ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS). Here, we enriched the SARAMIS™ database of the Vitek MS® plus mass spectrometer to improve the identification of species of the Acb complex. For each species, we incremented reference spectra. Then, a SuperSpectrum was created based on the selection of 40 specific masses. In a second step, we validated reference spectra and SuperSpectra with 100 isolates identified by rpoB gene sequencing. All the isolates were correctly identified by MALDI-TOF MS with the database we created as compared to the identifications obtained by rpoB sequencing. Our database enabled rapid and reliable identification of the pathogen species belonging to the Acb complex. Identification by MALDI-TOF MS with our database is a good alternative to molecular biology. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Biological assessments of a mixture of endocrine disruptors at environmentally relevant concentrations in water following UV/H{sub 2}O{sub 2} oxidation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chen, P.-J. [Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Duke University (United States); Integrated Toxicology Program, Nicolas School of Environment and Earth Science, Duke University (United States); Rosenfeldt, Erik J. [Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Duke University (United States); Kullman, Seth W. [Integrated Toxicology Program, Nicolas School of Environment and Earth Science, Duke University (United States); Hinton, David E. [Integrated Toxicology Program, Nicolas School of Environment and Earth Science, Duke University (United States); Linden, Karl G. [Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Duke University (United States)]. E-mail: kglinden@duke.edu

    2007-04-15

    Numerous studies have investigated degradation of individual endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs) in lab or natural waters. However, natural variations in water matrices and mixtures of EDCs in the environment may confound analysis of the treatment efficiency. Because chemical based analytical methods cannot represent the combined or synergistic activities between water quality parameters and/or the EDC mixtures at environmentally relevant concentrations ({mu}g L{sup -1}-ng L{sup -1}), bioanalytical assessments of residual estrogenic activity in treated water were used to evaluate the performance of the UV based advanced oxidation process for estrogenic contaminants in water. Four EDCs including estradiol (E{sub 2}), ethinyl estradiol (EE{sub 2}), bisphenol-A (BPA) and nonylphenol (NP) were spiked individually or as a mixture at {mu}g L{sup -1}-ng L{sup -1} in laboratory or natural river water. The removal rates of estrogenic activity were quantitatively evaluated by in vitro yeast estrogen screen (YES) and in vivo Vitellogenin (VTG) assays with Japanese medaka fish (Oryzias latipes). UV in combination with 10 ppm H{sub 2}O{sub 2} as an oxidation process was capable of decreasing in vitro and in vivo estrogenic activity, however, in vivo estrogenic activity of the EDC mixture in natural water was not completely removed at UV fluence up to 2000 mJ cm{sup -2}. The removal rates of in vitro estrogenic activity of the EDC mixtures were lower than those observed for single compounds, and slower in natural waters, likely due to lower steady-state concentrations of hydroxyl radicals ({center_dot}OH) in the presence of {center_dot}OH scavengers from the water matrix and EDC mixture.

  20. Investigation of the effect of sugar stereochemistry on biologically relevant lyotropic phases from branched-chain synthetic glycolipids by small-angle X-ray scattering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zahid, N Idayu; Conn, Charlotte E; Brooks, Nicholas J; Ahmad, Noraini; Seddon, John M; Hashim, Rauzah

    2013-12-23

    Synthetic branched-chain glycolipids are suitable as model systems in understanding biological cell membranes, particularly because certain natural lipids possess chain branching. Herein, four branched-chain glycopyranosides, namely, 2-hexyl-decyl-α-D-glucopyranoside (α-Glc-OC10C6), 2-hexyl-decyl-β-D-glucopyranoside (β-Glc-OC10C6), 2-hexyl-decyl-α-D-galactopyranoside (α-Gal-OC10C6), and 2-hexyl-decyl-β-D-galactopyranoside (β-Gal-OC10C6), with a total alkyl chain length of 16 carbon atoms have been synthesized, and their phase behavior has been studied. The partial binary phase diagrams of these nonionic surfactants in water were investigated by optical polarizing microscopy (OPM) and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). The introduction of chain branching in the hydrocarbon chain region is shown to result in the formation of inverse structures such as inverse hexagonal and inverse bicontinuous cubic phases. A comparison of the four compounds showed that they exhibited different polymorphism, especially in the thermotropic state, as a result of contributions from anomeric and epimeric effects according to their stereochemistry. The neat α-Glc-OC10C6 compound exhibited a lamellar (Lα) phase whereas dry α-Gal-OC10C6 formed an inverse bicontinuous cubic Ia3d (QII(G)) phase. Both β-anomers of glucoside and galactoside adopted the inverse hexagonal phase (HII) in the dry state. Generally, in the presence of water, all four glycolipids formed inverse bicontinuous cubic Ia3d (QII(G)) and Pn3m (QII(D)) phases over wide temperature and concentration ranges. The formation of inverse nonlamellar phases by these Guerbet branched-chain glycosides confirms their potential as materials for novel biotechnological applications such as drug delivery and crystallization of membrane proteins.

  1. Biological artificial fluid-induced non-lamellar phases in glyceryl monooleate: the kinetics pathway and its digestive process by bile salts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Yanyan; Wang, Qifang; Wang, Yan; Xu, Hui; Yuan, Bo; Li, Sanming; Liu, Hongzhuo

    2014-02-01

    The cubic (Q(II)) phase is a promising sustained-release system. However, its rigid gel-like propensity is highly viscous, which makes it difficult to handle in pharmaceutical applications. To circumvent this problem, a less viscous lamellar (L(α)) phase that could spontaneously transform to Q(II) phase by the introduction of water or biological artificial fluid can be used. However, the kinetics pathway of phase transition, susceptibility to digestive processes and impact of the transition on drug release are not yet well understood. We investigated various biological artificial fluid-induced L(α) to inverse Q(II) phase transition over time in glyceryl monooleate (GMO) by water penetration scan and light polarizing microscopy. To reveal the structure stability, fluorescence spectroscopy studies were conducted using pyrene as a probe. Furthermore, the release mechanism of pyrene as a lipophilic drug model in the spontaneously formed Q(II) was investigated. Although hexagonal (H(II)) mesophases occurred when phosphate buffered saline (PBS) 7.4, 0.1 M HCl or sodium taurocholate (NaTC) solutions were introduced to GMO at room temperature, they disappear with the exception of 0.1 M HCl at 37 °C. Compared with 25 °C, L(α) to Q(II) phase transition was in a faster rate as almost completely transforms were observed after 2 h post-immersion. The spontaneously formed mesophases were stable over 24 h immersions in PBS or pancreatic lipase solutions as proven by the extremely low fluorescence signal, however they were digestible by bile salts. This result indicated that digestion by bile salts was the major pathway instead of digestion by lipases. Moreover, pyrene fluorescence spectroscopy confirmed that the digestion by bile salts induced the formation of GMO-bile salt mixed micelles whose performance depended on the bile salt concentrations. This dependence influenced the drug release from the spontaneously formed Q(II) phase. All the results concluded that

  2. Biological pathways of exposure and ecotoxicity values for uranium and associated radionuclides: Chapter D in Hydrological, geological, and biological site characterization of breccia pipe uranium deposits in Northern Arizona

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hinck, Jo E.; Linder, Greg L.; Finger, Susan E.; Little, Edward E.; Tillitt, Donald E.; Kuhne, Wendy

    2010-01-01

    This chapter compiles available chemical and radiation toxicity information for plants and animals from the scientific literature on naturally occurring uranium and associated radionuclides. Specifically, chemical and radiation hazards associated with radionuclides in the uranium decay series including uranium, thallium, thorium, bismuth, radium, radon, protactinium, polonium, actinium, and francium were the focus of the literature compilation. In addition, exposure pathways and a food web specific to the segregation areas were developed. Major biological exposure pathways considered were ingestion, inhalation, absorption, and bioaccumulation, and biota categories included microbes, invertebrates, plants, fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. These data were developed for incorporation into a risk assessment to be conducted as part of an environmental impact statement for the Bureau of Land Management, which would identify representative plants and animals and their relative sensitivities to exposure of uranium and associated radionuclides. This chapter provides pertinent information to aid in the development of such an ecological risk assessment but does not estimate or derive guidance thresholds for radionuclides associated with uranium. Previous studies have not attempted to quantify the risks to biota caused directly by the chemical or radiation releases at uranium mining sites, although some information is available for uranium mill tailings and uranium mine closure activities. Research into the biological impacts of uranium exposure is strongly biased towards human health and exposure related to enriched or depleted uranium associated with the nuclear energy industry rather than naturally occurring uranium associated with uranium mining. Nevertheless, studies have reported that uranium and other radionuclides can affect the survival, growth, and reproduction of plants and animals. Exposure to chemical and radiation hazards is influenced by a

  3. Computational biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hartmann, Lars Røeboe; Jones, Neil; Simonsen, Jakob Grue

    2011-01-01

    Computation via biological devices has been the subject of close scrutiny since von Neumann’s early work some 60 years ago. In spite of the many relevant works in this field, the notion of programming biological devices seems to be, at best, ill-defined. While many devices are claimed or proved t...

  4. Measurement of biological relevant UV exposure. Investigations in a dental practice; Messung der biologisch relevanten UV-Strahlenbelastung. Untersuchungen in einer Zahnarztpraxis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Braches, J.M.H.

    2001-07-01

    Light sources used in a dental treatment room were examined in order to determine their spectral output in the UV region. Using an UVX-radiometer, the polymerization curing unit and the dental operating light were identified as the sole UV sources and thus they were examined spectroradiometrically. The curing unit exhibits a moderate fraction of UV-A radiation in the wavelength region of 350-400 nm, the operating light emitted UV-A as well as UV-B radiation (280-400 nm). Both light sources were used to determine the biological effective radiation employing the DLR biofilm technology. Results show an effect on the biofilm for the polymerization curing unit only at a distance of 0.2 cm and an unrealistic long exposure period (up to 30 min), pointing to underlying mechanisms of thermal nature. Using the operating light, a dose-dependent inactivation of the DLR biofilm could be documented. A reduction of the effect could be obtained using different shielding materials (mylar foil, medical gloves). From these experiments, the mean UV radiation exposure was calculated to be 3.163 Jm{sup -2} Biofilm/h (0.045 MED/h) for the patient's oral mucosa region and 0.145 Jm{sup -2} Biofilm/h (0.002 MED/h) for the dentist's wrist region. The results point out that there is an only marginal UV radiation risk for the dentist and the patient from the light sources of a dental practice. (orig.) [German] Die in einem Behandlungsraum einer Zahnarztpraxis vorhandenen Lichtquellen wurden in Hinblick auf deren Strahlungsabgabe im UV-Bereich des elektromagnetischen Spektrums untersucht. Mittels eines UVX-Radiometers wurden zunaechst die Polymerisationsleuchte und die Behandlungsleuchte als alleinige UV-Strahlenquellen identifiziert und daraufhin spektroradiometrisch untersucht. Die Polymerisationsleuchte zeigte dabei einen moderaten Anteil an UV-A-Strahlung im Wellenlaengenbereich von 350-400 nm, die Behandlungsleuchte emittierte UV-Strahlung sowohl im UV-A- als auch im UV

  5. The new follow-on-biologics law: a section by section analysis of the patent litigation provisions in the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dougherty, Michael P

    2010-01-01

    An abbreviated pathway for the approval of biosimilar biological products, often called "follow-on biologics," has been enacted into law as part of the health care legislation recently passed by Congress and signed by the President. The subtitle of the health care bill establishing this approval pathway, the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009, includes many provisions governing the identification of patents relevant to a given biosimilar biological product and the assertion of those patents in infringement suits. This article provides a section-by-section analysis of the patent-related provisions of the new approval pathway for biosimilar biological products, and points out several ways in which the new law differs fundamentally from the Hatch-Waxman Act, which provides the approval pathway for generic versions of small molecule drugs.

  6. Biologically relevant heterodinuclear iron-manganese complexes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carboni, Michaël; Clémancey, Martin; Molton, Florian; Pécaut, Jacques; Lebrun, Colette; Dubois, Lionel; Blondin, Geneviève; Latour, J-M

    2012-10-01

    The heterodinuclear complexes [Fe(III)Mn(II)(L-Bn)(μ-OAc)(2)](ClO(4))(2) (1) and [Fe(II)Mn(II)(L-Bn)(μ-OAc)(2)](ClO(4)) (2) with the unsymmetrical dinucleating ligand HL-Bn {[2-bis[(2-pyridylmethyl)aminomethyl

  7. Gregory Bateson's relevance to current molecular biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruni, Luis Emilio

    2008-01-01

    Among other things, Gregory Bateson is considered a pioneer in the study of communication in living systems and evolution. His contribution to cybernetics was very special because for him communication was a characteristic property of the living world. But his formulation of information...... as differences sensed by living systems did not hinder him from using the rest of the conceptual tool-box from cybernetics like, e.g., the notions of feedback, digital and analogical codes, and even information as improbability or restraints, which in his view emphasised the importance of the context...... to the fruitfulness of his abductive approach, being as he was concerned with advancing the search for fundamental principles in communication processes in living systems at different hierarchical levels. In this paper I point out some passages to illustrate Bateson’s coherent approach to context...

  8. CRISPR-Cas: biology, mechanisms and relevance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hille, Frank

    2016-01-01

    Prokaryotes have evolved several defence mechanisms to protect themselves from viral predators. Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) and their associated proteins (Cas) display a prokaryotic adaptive immune system that memorizes previous infections by integrating short sequences of invading genomes—termed spacers—into the CRISPR locus. The spacers interspaced with repeats are expressed as small guide CRISPR RNAs (crRNAs) that are employed by Cas proteins to target invaders sequence-specifically upon a reoccurring infection. The ability of the minimal CRISPR-Cas9 system to target DNA sequences using programmable RNAs has opened new avenues in genome editing in a broad range of cells and organisms with high potential in therapeutical applications. While numerous scientific studies have shed light on the biochemical processes behind CRISPR-Cas systems, several aspects of the immunity steps, however, still lack sufficient understanding. This review summarizes major discoveries in the CRISPR-Cas field, discusses the role of CRISPR-Cas in prokaryotic immunity and other physiological properties, and describes applications of the system as a DNA editing technology and antimicrobial agent. This article is part of the themed issue ‘The new bacteriology’. PMID:27672148

  9. Chlorosulfolipids: Structure, synthesis, and biological relevance

    OpenAIRE

    Bedke, D. Karl; Vanderwal, Christopher D.

    2010-01-01

    Chlorosulfolipids have been isolated from freshwater algae and from toxic mussels. They appear to have a structural role in algal membranes and have been implicated in Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning. Further fascinating aspects of these compounds include their stereochemically complex polychlorinated structures and the resulting strong conformational biases, and their poorly understood (yet surely compelling) biosynthesis. Discussions of each of these topics and of efforts in structural and s...

  10. Reaction of tetracycline with biologically relevant chloramines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benavides, J.; Barrias, P.; Piro, N.; Arenas, A.; Orrego, A.; Pino, E.; Villegas, L.; Dorta, E.; Aspée, A.; López-Alarcón, C.

    2017-05-01

    Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection triggers inflammatory processes with the consequent production of hypochlorous acid (HOCl), monochloramine (NH2Cl), and protein-derived chloramines. As the therapy for eradicating H. pylori is partially based on the use of tetracycline, we studied the kinetic of its consumption elicited by HOCl, NH2Cl, N-chloro-n-butylamine (NHCl-But, used as a lysine-derived chloramine model), and lysozyme-derived chloramines. In the micromolar concentration range, tetracycline reacted rapidly with HOCl, generating in the first few seconds intermediates of short half-life. In contrast, a slow tetracycline consumption was observed in the presence of high NH2Cl and NHCl-But concentrations (millimolar range). Similar chlorinated products of tetracycline were identified by mass spectrometry, in the presence of HOCl and NH2Cl. These results evidenced that tautomers of tetracycline are pivotal intermediates in all reactions. In spite of the low reactivity of chloramines towards tetracycline, it is evident that, in the concentration range where they are produced in a H. pylori infection (millimolar range), the reactions lead to oxidation and/or chlorination of tetracycline. This kind of reactions, which were also observed triggered by lysozyme-derived chloramines, could limit the efficiency of the tetracycline-based therapy.

  11. A Wnt1 regulated Frizzled-1/β-Catenin signaling pathway as a candidate regulatory circuit controlling mesencephalic dopaminergic neuron-astrocyte crosstalk: Therapeutical relevance for neuron survival and neuroprotection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pluchino Stefano

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Dopamine-synthesizing (dopaminergic, DA neurons in the ventral midbrain (VM constitute a pivotal neuronal population controlling motor behaviors, cognitive and affective brain functions, which generation critically relies on the activation of Wingless-type MMTV integration site (Wnt/β-catenin pathway in their progenitors. In Parkinson's disease, DA cell bodies within the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc progressively degenerate, with causes and mechanisms poorly understood. Emerging evidence suggests that Wnt signaling via Frizzled (Fzd receptors may play a role in different degenerative states, but little is known about Wnt signaling in the adult midbrain. Using in vitro and in vivo model systems of DA degeneration, along with functional studies in both intact and SN lesioned mice, we herein highlight an intrinsic Wnt1/Fzd-1/β-catenin tone critically contributing to the survival and protection of adult midbrain DA neurons. Results In vitro experiments identifie Fzd-1 receptor expression at a mRNA and protein levels in dopamine transporter (DAT expressing neurons, and demonstrate the ability of exogenous Wnt1 to exert robust neuroprotective effects against Caspase-3 activation, the loss of tyrosine hydroxylase-positive (TH+ neurons and [3H] dopamine uptake induced by different DA-specific insults, including serum and growth factor deprivation, 6-hydroxydopamine and MPTP/MPP+. Co-culture of DA neurons with midbrain astrocytes phenocopies Wnt1 neuroprotective effects, whereas RNA interference-mediated knockdown of Wnt1 in midbrain astrocytes markedly reduces astrocyte-induced TH+ neuroprotection. Likewise, silencing β-catenin mRNA or knocking down Fzd-1 receptor expression in mesencephalic neurons counteract astrocyte-induced TH+ neuroprotection. In vivo experiments document Fzd-1 co-localization with TH+ neurons within the intact SNpc and blockade of Fzd/β-catenin signaling by unilateral infusion of a Fzd

  12. Selenzyme: Enzyme selection tool for pathway design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carbonell, Pablo; Wong, Jerry; Swainston, Neil; Takano, Eriko; Turner, Nicholas J; Scrutton, Nigel S; Kell, Douglas B; Breitling, Rainer; Faulon, Jean-Loup

    2018-02-07

    Synthetic biology applies the principles of engineering to biology in order to create biological functionalities not seen before in nature. One of the most exciting applications of synthetic biology is the design of new organisms with the ability to produce valuable chemicals including pharmaceuticals and biomaterials in a greener; sustainable fashion. Selecting the right enzymes to catalyze each reaction step in order to produce a desired target compound is, however, not trivial. Here, we present Selenzyme, a free online enzyme selection tool for metabolic pathway design. The user is guided through several decision steps in order to shortlist the best candidates for a given pathway step. The tool graphically presents key information about enzymes based on existing databases and tools such as: similarity of sequences and of catalyzed reactions; phylogenetic distance between source organism and intended host species; multiple alignment highlighting conserved regions, predicted catalytic site, and active regions; and relevant properties such as predicted solubility and transmembrane regions. Selenzyme provides bespoke sequence selection for automated workflows in biofoundries. The tool is integrated as part of the pathway design stage into the design-build-test-learn SYNBIOCHEM pipeline. The Selenzyme web server is available at http://selenzyme.synbiochem.co.uk. pablo.carbonell@manchester.ac.uk. Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. © The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press.

  13. Unraveling pancreatic islet biology by quantitative proteomics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhou, Jianying; Dann, Geoffrey P.; Liew, Chong W.; Smith, Richard D.; Kulkarni, Rohit N.; Qian, Weijun

    2011-08-01

    The pancreatic islets of Langerhans play a critical role in maintaining blood glucose homeostasis by secreting insulin and several other important peptide hormones. Impaired insulin secretion due to islet dysfunction is linked to the pathogenesis underlying both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. Over the past 5 years, emerging proteomic technologies have been applied to dissect the signaling pathways that regulate islet functions and gain an understanding of the mechanisms of islet dysfunction relevant to diabetes. Herein, we briefly review some of the recent quantitative proteomic studies involving pancreatic islets geared towards gaining a better understanding of islet biology relevant to metabolic diseases.

  14. A PSO-Based Approach for Pathway Marker Identification From Gene Expression Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mandal, Monalisa; Mondal, Jyotirmay; Mukhopadhyay, Anirban

    2015-09-01

    In this article, a new and robust pathway activity inference scheme is proposed from gene expression data using Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO). From microarray gene expression data, the corresponding pathway information of the genes are collected from a public database. For identifying the pathway markers, the expression values of each pathway consisting of genes, termed as pathway activity, are summarized. To measure the goodness of a pathway activity vector, t-score is widely used in the existing literature. The weakness of existing techniques for inferring pathway activity is that they intend to consider all the member genes of a pathway. But in reality, all the member genes may not be significant to the corresponding pathway. Therefore, those genes, which are responsible in the corresponding pathway, should be included only. Motivated by this, in the proposed method, using PSO, important genes with respect to each pathway are identified. The objective is to maximize the average t-score. For the pathway activities inferred from different percentage of significant pathways, the average absolute t -scores are plotted. In addition, the top 50% pathway markers are evaluated using 10-fold cross validation and its performance is compared with that of other existing techniques. Biological relevance of the results is also studied.

  15. Why relevance theory is relevant for lexicography

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bothma, Theo; Tarp, Sven

    2014-01-01

    This article starts by providing a brief summary of relevance theory in information science in relation to the function theory of lexicography, explaining the different types of relevance, viz. objective system relevance and the subjective types of relevance, i.e. topical, cognitive, situational...... dictionary project, identifying new tasks and responsibilities of the modern lexicographer. The article furthermore discusses how relevance theory impacts on teaching dictionary culture and reference skills. By integrating insights from lexicography and information science, the article contributes to new...

  16. Eight paths of ERK1/2 signalling pathway regulating hepatocyte ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2011-12-05

    Dec 5, 2011 ... proliferation and how. In this study, using isolated hepatocytes, Rat Genome. 230 2.0 Array, bioinformatics and systems biology meth- ods, we evaluated expression changes of genes related to. ERK1/2 signalling pathway and its paths at the transcrip- tional level, which is helpful to explore the relevance of.

  17. Genetic characterization of interleukins (IL-1α, IL-1β, IL-2, IL-4, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12A, IL-12B, IL-15 and IL-18) with relevant biological roles in lagomorphs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neves, Fabiana; Abrantes, Joana; Almeida, Tereza; de Matos, Ana Lemos; Costa, Paulo P; Esteves, Pedro J

    2015-11-01

    ILs, as essential innate immune modulators, are involved in an array of biological processes. In the European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) IL-1α, IL-1β, IL-2, IL-4, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12A, IL-12B, IL-15 and IL-18 have been implicated in inflammatory processes and in the immune response against rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus and myxoma virus infections. In this study we characterized these ILs in six Lagomorpha species (European rabbit, pygmy rabbit, two cottontail rabbit species, European brown hare and American pika). Overall, these ILs are conserved between lagomorphs, including in their exon/intron structure. Most differences were observed between leporids and American pika. Indeed, when comparing both, some relevant differences were observed in American pika, such as the location of the stop codon in IL-1α and IL-2, the existence of a different transcript in IL8 and the number of cysteine residues in IL-1β. Changes at N-glycosylation motifs were also detected in IL-1, IL-10, IL-12B and IL-15. IL-1α is the protein that presents the highest evolutionary distances, which is in contrast to IL-12A where the distances between lagomorphs are the lowest. For all these ILs, sequences of human and European rabbit are more closely related than between human and mouse or European rabbit and mouse. © The Author(s) 2015.

  18. The evolution of relevance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott-Phillips, Thomas C

    2010-05-01

    With human language, the same utterance can have different meanings in different contexts. Nevertheless, listeners almost invariably converge upon the correct intended meaning. The classic Gricean explanation of how this is achieved posits the existence of four maxims of conversation, which speakers are assumed to follow. Armed with this knowledge, listeners are able to interpret utterances in a contextually sensible way. This account enjoys wide acceptance, but it has not gone unchallenged. Specifically, Relevance Theory offers an explicitly cognitive account of utterance interpretation that presents a radical challenge to the neo-Gricean paradigm. Evolutionary considerations are one way in which we can choose between competing theories. A simple game-theoretic model of the evolution of communication is presented, and it is used to derive a number of basic qualities that will be satisfied by all evolved communication systems. These qualities are observed to precisely predict the foundational principles of Relevance Theory. The model thus provides biological support for that enterprise in general, and for the plausibility of the cognitive mechanisms that it describes in particular. Copyright © 2010 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  19. Informatics approaches in the Biological Characterization of ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adverse Outcome Pathways (AOPs) are a conceptual framework to characterize toxicity pathways by a series of mechanistic steps from a molecular initiating event to population outcomes. This framework helps to direct risk assessment research, for example by aiding in computational prioritization of chemicals, genes, and tissues relevant to an adverse health outcome. We have designed and implemented a computational workflow to access a wealth of public data relating genes, chemicals, diseases, pathways, and species, to provide a biological context for putative AOPs. We selected three AOP case studies: ER/Aromatase Antagonism Leading to Reproductive Dysfunction, AHR1 Activation Leading to Cardiotoxicity, and AChE Inhibition Leading to Acute Mortality, and deduced a taxonomic range of applicability for each AOP. We developed computational tools to automatically access and analyze the pathway activity of AOP-relevant protein orthologs, finding broad similarity among vertebrate species for the ER/Aromatase and AHR1 AOPs, and similarity extending to invertebrate animal species for AChE inhibition. Additionally, we used public gene expression data to find groups of highly co-expressed genes, and compared those groups across organisms. To interpret these findings at a higher level of biological organization, we created the AOPdb, a relational database that mines results from sources including NCBI, KEGG, Reactome, CTD, and OMIM. This multi-source database connects genes,

  20. Adverse outcome pathways: a concise introduction for toxicologists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vergauwen, Lucia; Hengstler, Jan G.; Angrish, Michelle; Whelan, Maurice

    2018-01-01

    Adverse outcome pathways are designed to provide a clear-cut mechanistic representation of critical toxicological effects that propagate over different layers of biological organization from the initial interaction of a chemical with a molecular target to an adverse outcome at the individual or population level. Adverse outcome pathways are currently gaining momentum, especially in view of their many potential applications as pragmatic tools in the fields of human toxicology, ecotoxicology and risk assessment. A number of guidance documents, issued by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, as well as landmark papers, outlining best practices to develop, assess and use adverse outcome pathways, have been published in the last few years. The present paper provides a synopsis of the main principles related to the adverse outcome pathway framework for the toxicologist less familiar with this area, followed by two case studies relevant for human toxicology and ecotoxicology. PMID:28660287

  1. Curation and Computational Design of Bioenergy-Related Metabolic Pathways

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Karp, Peter D. [SRI International, Menlo Park, CA (United States)

    2014-09-12

    Pathway Tools is a systems-biology software package written by SRI International (SRI) that produces Pathway/Genome Databases (PGDBs) for organisms with a sequenced genome. Pathway Tools also provides a wide range of capabilities for analyzing predicted metabolic networks and user-generated omics data. More than 5,000 academic, industrial, and government groups have licensed Pathway Tools. This user community includes researchers at all three DOE bioenergy centers, as well as academic and industrial metabolic engineering (ME) groups. An integral part of the Pathway Tools software is MetaCyc, a large, multiorganism database of metabolic pathways and enzymes that SRI and its academic collaborators manually curate. This project included two main goals: I. Enhance the MetaCyc content of bioenergy-related enzymes and pathways. II. Develop computational tools for engineering metabolic pathways that satisfy specified design goals, in particular for bioenergy-related pathways. In part I, SRI proposed to significantly expand the coverage of bioenergy-related metabolic information in MetaCyc, followed by the generation of organism-specific PGDBs for all energy-relevant organisms sequenced at the DOE Joint Genome Institute (JGI). Part I objectives included: 1: Expand the content of MetaCyc to include bioenergy-related enzymes and pathways. 2: Enhance the Pathway Tools software to enable display of complex polymer degradation processes. 3: Create new PGDBs for the energy-related organisms sequenced by JGI, update existing PGDBs with new MetaCyc content, and make these data available to JBEI via the BioCyc website. In part II, SRI proposed to develop an efficient computational tool for the engineering of metabolic pathways. Part II objectives included: 4: Develop computational tools for generating metabolic pathways that satisfy specified design goals, enabling users to specify parameters such as starting and ending compounds, and preferred or disallowed intermediate compounds

  2. Redox biology in normal cells and cancer: restoring function of the redox/Fyn/c-Cbl pathway in cancer cells offers new approaches to cancer treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noble, Mark; Mayer-Pröschel, Margot; Li, Zaibo; Dong, Tiefei; Cui, Wanchang; Pröschel, Christoph; Ambeskovic, Ibro; Dietrich, Joerg; Han, Ruolan; Yang, Yin Miranda; Folts, Christopher; Stripay, Jennifer; Chen, Hsing-Yu; Stevens, Brett M

    2015-02-01

    This review discusses a unique discovery path starting with novel findings on redox regulation of precursor cell and signaling pathway function and identification of a new mechanism by which relatively small changes in redox status can control entire signaling networks that regulate self-renewal, differentiation, and survival. The pathway central to this work, the redox/Fyn/c-Cbl (RFC) pathway, converts small increases in oxidative status to pan-activation of the c-Cbl ubiquitin ligase, which controls multiple receptors and other proteins of central importance in precursor cell and cancer cell function. Integration of work on the RFC pathway with attempts to understand how treatment with systemic chemotherapy causes neurological problems led to the discovery that glioblastomas (GBMs) and basal-like breast cancers (BLBCs) inhibit c-Cbl function through altered utilization of the cytoskeletal regulators Cool-1/βpix and Cdc42, respectively. Inhibition of these proteins to restore normal c-Cbl function suppresses cancer cell division, increases sensitivity to chemotherapy, disrupts tumor-initiating cell (TIC) activity in GBMs and BLBCs, controls multiple critical TIC regulators, and also allows targeting of non-TICs. Moreover, these manipulations do not increase chemosensitivity or suppress division of nontransformed cells. Restoration of normal c-Cbl function also allows more effective harnessing of estrogen receptor-α (ERα)-independent activities of tamoxifen to activate the RFC pathway and target ERα-negative cancer cells. Our work thus provides a discovery strategy that reveals mechanisms and therapeutic targets that cannot be deduced by standard genetics analyses, which fail to reveal the metabolic information, isoform shifts, protein activation, protein complexes, and protein degradation critical to our discoveries. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  3. Pathway modeling of microarray data: A case study of pathway activity changes in the testis following in utero exposure to dibutyl phthalate (DBP)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ovacik, Meric A.; Sen, Banalata; Euling, Susan Y.; Gaido, Kevin W.; Ierapetritou, Marianthi G.; Androulakis, Ioannis P.

    2013-01-01

    Pathway activity level analysis, the approach pursued in this study, focuses on all genes that are known to be members of metabolic and signaling pathways as defined by the KEGG database. The pathway activity level analysis entails singular value decomposition (SVD) of the expression data of the genes constituting a given pathway. We explore an extension of the pathway activity methodology for application to time-course microarray data. We show that pathway analysis enhances our ability to detect biologically relevant changes in pathway activity using synthetic data. As a case study, we apply the pathway activity level formulation coupled with significance analysis to microarray data from two different rat testes exposed in utero to Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP). In utero DBP exposure in the rat results in developmental toxicity of a number of male reproductive organs, including the testes. One well-characterized mode of action for DBP and the male reproductive developmental effects is the repression of expression of genes involved in cholesterol transport, steroid biosynthesis and testosterone synthesis that lead to a decreased fetal testicular testosterone. Previous analyses of DBP testes microarray data focused on either individual gene expression changes or changes in the expression of specific genes that are hypothesized, or known, to be important in testicular development and testosterone synthesis. However, a pathway analysis may inform whether there are additional affected pathways that could inform additional modes of action linked to DBP developmental toxicity. We show that Pathway activity analysis may be considered for a more comprehensive analysis of microarray data

  4. Pathway modeling of microarray data: A case study of pathway activity changes in the testis following in utero exposure to dibutyl phthalate (DBP)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ovacik, Meric A. [Chemical and Biochemical Engineering Department, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ 08854 (United States); Sen, Banalata [National Center for Environmental Assessment, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709 (United States); Euling, Susan Y. [National Center for Environmental Assessment, Office of Research and Development, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC 20460 (United States); Gaido, Kevin W. [U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Center for Veterinary Medicine, Office of New Animal Drug Evaluation, Division of Human Food Safety, Rockville, MD 20855 (United States); Ierapetritou, Marianthi G. [Chemical and Biochemical Engineering Department, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ 08854 (United States); Androulakis, Ioannis P., E-mail: yannis@rci.rutgers.edu [Chemical and Biochemical Engineering Department, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ 08854 (United States); Biomedical Engineering Department, Rutgers University, NJ 08854 (United States)

    2013-09-15

    Pathway activity level analysis, the approach pursued in this study, focuses on all genes that are known to be members of metabolic and signaling pathways as defined by the KEGG database. The pathway activity level analysis entails singular value decomposition (SVD) of the expression data of the genes constituting a given pathway. We explore an extension of the pathway activity methodology for application to time-course microarray data. We show that pathway analysis enhances our ability to detect biologically relevant changes in pathway activity using synthetic data. As a case study, we apply the pathway activity level formulation coupled with significance analysis to microarray data from two different rat testes exposed in utero to Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP). In utero DBP exposure in the rat results in developmental toxicity of a number of male reproductive organs, including the testes. One well-characterized mode of action for DBP and the male reproductive developmental effects is the repression of expression of genes involved in cholesterol transport, steroid biosynthesis and testosterone synthesis that lead to a decreased fetal testicular testosterone. Previous analyses of DBP testes microarray data focused on either individual gene expression changes or changes in the expression of specific genes that are hypothesized, or known, to be important in testicular development and testosterone synthesis. However, a pathway analysis may inform whether there are additional affected pathways that could inform additional modes of action linked to DBP developmental toxicity. We show that Pathway activity analysis may be considered for a more comprehensive analysis of microarray data.

  5. GC-MS Metabolomic Analysis to Reveal the Metabolites and Biological Pathways Involved in the Developmental Stages and Tissue Response of Panax ginseng

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jia Liu

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Ginsenosides, the major compounds present in ginseng, are known to have numerous physiological and pharmacological effects. The physiological processes, enzymes and genes involved in ginsenoside synthesis in P. ginseng have been well characterized. However, relatively little information is known about the dynamic metabolic changes that occur during ginsenoside accumulation in ginseng. To explore this topic, we isolated metabolites from different tissues at different growth stages, and identified and characterized them by using gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry (GC-MS. The results showed that a total of 30, 16, 20, 36 and 31 metabolites were identified and involved in different developmental stages in leaf, stem, petiole, lateral root and main root, respectively. To investigate the contribution of tissue to the biosynthesis of ginsenosides, we examined the metabolic changes of leaf, stem, petiole, lateral root and main root during five development stages: 1-, 2-, 3-, 4- and 5-years. The score plots of partial least squares-discriminate analysis (PLS-DA showed clear discrimination between growth stages and tissue samples. Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG pathway analysis in the same tissue at different growth stages indicated profound biochemical changes in several pathways, including carbohydrate metabolism and pentose phosphate metabolism, in addition, the tissues displayed significant variations in amino acid metabolism, sugar metabolism and energy metabolism. These results should facilitate further dissection of the metabolic flux regulation of ginsenoside accumulation in different developmental stages or different tissues of ginseng.

  6. Coordination modes between copper(II) and N-acetylneuraminic (sialic) acid from a 2D-simulation analysis of EPR spectra. Implications for copper mediation of sialoglycoconjugate chemistry relevant to human biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fainerman-Melnikova, Marina; Szabó-Plánka, Terézia; Rockenbauer, Antal; Codd, Rachel

    2005-04-04

    mononuclear Cu(II) center. This work shows that Cu(II) could potentially mediate the chemistry of sialoglycoconjugate-containing proteins in human biology, such as the sialylated amyloid precursor protein of relevance to Alzheimer's disease.

  7. Proteomics provides insights into biological pathways altered by plant growth promoting bacteria and arbuscular mycorrhiza in sorghum grown in marginal soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhawi, Faten; Datta, Rupali; Ramakrishna, Wusirika

    2017-02-01

    Sorghum is an economically important crop, a model system for gene discovery and a biofuel source. Sorghum seedlings were subjected to three microbial treatments, plant growth promoting bacteria (B), arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi mix with two Glomus species (G. aggregatum and G. etunicatum), Funelliformis mosseae and Rhizophagus irregularis (My), and B and My combined (My+B). Proteomic analysis was conducted followed by integration with metabolite, plant biomass and nutrient data. Out of 366 differentially expressed proteins in sorghum roots, 44 upregulated proteins overlapping among three treatment groups showed positive correlation with sorghum biomass or element uptake or both. Proteins upregulated only in B group include asparagine synthetase which showed negative correlation with biomass and uptake of elements. Phosphoribosyl amino imidazole succinocarboxamide protein with more than 50-fold change in My and My+B groups correlated positively with Ca, Cu, S and sucrose levels in roots. The B group showed the highest number of upregulated proteins among the three groups with negative correlation with sorghum biomass and element uptake. KEGG pathway analysis identified carbon fixation as the unique pathway associated with common upregulated proteins while biosynthesis of amino acids and fatty acid degradation were associated with common downregulated proteins. Protein-protein interaction analysis using STRING identified a major network with thirteen downregulated proteins. These findings suggest that plant-growth-promoting-bacteria alone or in combination with mycorrhiza enhanced radical scavenging system and increased levels of specific proteins thereby shifting the metabolism towards synthesis of carbohydrates resulting in sorghum biomass increase and uptake of nutrients. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Using views of Systems Biology Cloud: application for model building.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruebenacker, Oliver; Blinov, Michael

    2011-03-01

    A large and growing network ("cloud") of interlinked terms and records of items of Systems Biology knowledge is available from the web. These items include pathways, reactions, substances, literature references, organisms, and anatomy, all described in different data sets. Here, we discuss how the knowledge from the cloud can be molded into representations (views) useful for data visualization and modeling. We discuss methods to create and use various views relevant for visualization, modeling, and model annotations, while hiding irrelevant details without unacceptable loss or distortion. We show that views are compatible with understanding substances and processes as sets of microscopic compounds and events respectively, which allows the representation of specializations and generalizations as subsets and supersets respectively. We explain how these methods can be implemented based on the bridging ontology Systems Biological Pathway Exchange (SBPAX) in the Systems Biology Linker (SyBiL) we have developed.

  9. Pathways with PathWhiz.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pon, Allison; Jewison, Timothy; Su, Yilu; Liang, Yongjie; Knox, Craig; Maciejewski, Adam; Wilson, Michael; Wishart, David S

    2015-07-01

    PathWhiz (http://smpdb.ca/pathwhiz) is a web server designed to create colourful, visually pleasing and biologically accurate pathway diagrams that are both machine-readable and interactive. As a web server, PathWhiz is accessible from almost any place and compatible with essentially any operating system. It also houses a public library of pathways and pathway components that can be easily viewed and expanded upon by its users. PathWhiz allows users to readily generate biologically complex pathways by using a specially designed drawing palette to quickly render metabolites (including automated structure generation), proteins (including quaternary structures, covalent modifications and cofactors), nucleic acids, membranes, subcellular structures, cells, tissues and organs. Both small-molecule and protein/gene pathways can be constructed by combining multiple pathway processes such as reactions, interactions, binding events and transport activities. PathWhiz's pathway replication and propagation functions allow for existing pathways to be used to create new pathways or for existing pathways to be automatically propagated across species. PathWhiz pathways can be saved in BioPAX, SBGN-ML and SBML data exchange formats, as well as PNG, PWML, HTML image map or SVG images that can be viewed offline or explored using PathWhiz's interactive viewer. PathWhiz has been used to generate over 700 pathway diagrams for a number of popular databases including HMDB, DrugBank and SMPDB. © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  10. A new take on comparative immunology; Relevance to immunotherapy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Ena; Albini, Adriana; Stroncek, David F; Marincola, Francesco M

    2012-01-01

    Summary It is becoming increasingly recognized that experimental animal models, while useful to address monothematic biological questions, bear unpredictable relevance to human disease. Several reasons have been proposed. However, the uncontrollable nature of human genetics and the heterogeneity of disease that with difficulty can be replicated experimentally play a leading role. Comparative immunology is a term that generally refers to the analysis of shared or diverging facets of immunology among species; these comparisons are carried according to the principle that evolutionarily conserved themes outline biologic functions universally relevant for survival. We propose that a similar strategy could be applied searching for themes shared by distinct immune pathologies within our own species. Identification of common patterns may outline pathways necessary for a particular determinism to occur such as tissue-specific rejection or tolerance. This approach is founded on the unproven but sensible presumption that Nature does not require an infinite plethora of redundant mechanisms to reach its purposes. Thus, immune pathologies must follow, at least in part, common means that determine their onset and maintenance. Commonalities among diseases can, in turn, be segregated from disease-specific patterns uncovering essential mechanisms that may represent universal targets for immunotherapy. PMID:20635956

  11. Deep learning relevance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lioma, Christina; Larsen, Birger; Petersen, Casper

    2016-01-01

    train a Recurrent Neural Network (RNN) on existing relevant information to that query. We then use the RNN to "deep learn" a single, synthetic, and we assume, relevant document for that query. We design a crowdsourcing experiment to assess how relevant the "deep learned" document is, compared...

  12. Caffeine affects the biological responses of human hematopoietic cells of myeloid lineage via downregulation of the mTOR pathway and xanthine oxidase activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abooali, Maryam; Yasinska, Inna M.; Casely-Hayford, Maxwell A.; Berger, Steffen M.; Fasler-Kan, Elizaveta; Sumbayev, Vadim V.

    2015-01-01

    Correction of human myeloid cell function is crucial for the prevention of inflammatory and allergic reactions as well as leukaemia progression. Caffeine, a naturally occurring food component, is known to display anti-inflammatory effects which have previously been ascribed largely to its inhibitory actions on phosphodiesterase. However, more recent studies suggest an additional role in affecting the activity of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), a master regulator of myeloid cell translational pathways, although detailed molecular events underlying its mode of action have not been elucidated. Here, we report the cellular uptake of caffeine, without metabolisation, by healthy and malignant hematopoietic myeloid cells including monocytes, basophils and primary acute myeloid leukaemia mononuclear blasts. Unmodified caffeine downregulated mTOR signalling, which affected glycolysis and the release of pro-inflammatory/pro-angiogenic cytokines as well as other inflammatory mediators. In monocytes, the effects of caffeine were potentiated by its ability to inhibit xanthine oxidase, an enzyme which plays a central role in human purine catabolism by generating uric acid. In basophils, caffeine also increased intracellular cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) levels which further enhanced its inhibitory action on mTOR. These results demonstrate an important mode of pharmacological action of caffeine with potentially wide-ranging therapeutic impact for treating non-infectious disorders of the human immune system, where it could be applied directly to inflammatory cells. PMID:26384306

  13. Deciphering the Biochemical Pathway and Pharmacokinetic Study of Amyloid βeta-42 with Superparamagnetic Iron Oxide Nanoparticles (SPIONs) Using Systems Biology Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaushik, Aman Chandra; Kumar, Ajay; Dwivedi, Vivek Dhar; Bharadwaj, Shiv; Kumar, Sanjay; Bharti, Kritika; Kumar, Pavan; Chaudhary, Ravi Kumar; Mishra, Sarad Kumar

    2018-04-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathogenesis leads to the appearance of senile plaques due to the production and deposition of the β-amyloid peptide (Aβ). Superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONs) have potential role in the detection and imaging of Aβ plaques in AD. SPIONs have shown appropriate potential in the diagnosis and treatment of AD. In the present study, the pharmacokinetics of SPIONs and its effect in the biochemical pathway of AD were analyzed using collected information. During analysis, the interaction of SPIONs with amyloid beta-42 (Aβ 42 ), a biomarker for AD progression, has been shown. Nodes represent the entities and edges represent the relation (interactions) of one node to another node. Aβ 42 and their interaction with other entities making up biochemical network are involved in AD mechanism in presence of SPION. The kinetic simulation was done to investigate pharmacokinetics of SPIONs for AD, where concentration was assigned of nanoparticles and other entities were applied as a kinetic irreversible simple Michaelis-Menten or mass action kinetics. Simulation was done in presence and absence of SPIONs to investigate pharmacokinetic effect in AD and explore the mechanism of Aβ 42 in presence of SPIONs. This study may lead to better understanding, which is required to target the metabolism of Aß 42 peptide, a pivotal player in this pathology.

  14. Discovery of Novel Bromophenol Hybrids as Potential Anticancer Agents through the Ros-Mediated Apoptotic Pathway: Design, Synthesis and Biological Evaluation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li-Jun Wang

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available A series of bromophenol hybrids with N-containing heterocyclic moieties were designed, and their anticancer activities against a panel of five human cancer cell lines (A549, Bel7402, HepG2, HCT116 and Caco2 using MTT assay in vitro were explored. Among them, thirteen compounds (17a, 17b, 18a, 19a, 19b, 20a, 20b, 21a, 21b, 22a, 22b, 23a, and 23b exhibited significant inhibitory activity against the tested cancer cell lines. The structure-activity relationships (SARs of bromophenol derivatives were discussed. The promising candidate compound 17a could induce cell cycle arrest at G0/G1 phase and induce apoptosis in A549 cells, as well as caused DNA fragmentations, morphological changes and ROS generation by the mechanism studies. Furthermore, compound 17a suppression of Bcl-2 levels (decrease in the expression of the anti-apoptotic proteins Bcl-2 and down-regulation in the expression levels of Bcl-2 in A549 cells were observed, along with activation caspase-3 and PARP, which indicated that compound 17a induced A549 cells apoptosis in vitro through the ROS-mediated apoptotic pathway. These results might be useful for bromophenol derivatives to be explored and developed as novel anticancer drugs.

  15. Network-based identification of biomarkers coexpressed with multiple pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Nancy Lan; Wan, Ying-Wooi

    2014-01-01

    Unraveling complex molecular interactions and networks and incorporating clinical information in modeling will present a paradigm shift in molecular medicine. Embedding biological relevance via modeling molecular networks and pathways has become increasingly important for biomarker identification in cancer susceptibility and metastasis studies. Here, we give a comprehensive overview of computational methods used for biomarker identification, and provide a performance comparison of several network models used in studies of cancer susceptibility, disease progression, and prognostication. Specifically, we evaluated implication networks, Boolean networks, Bayesian networks, and Pearson's correlation networks in constructing gene coexpression networks for identifying lung cancer diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers. The results show that implication networks, implemented in Genet package, identified sets of biomarkers that generated an accurate prediction of lung cancer risk and metastases; meanwhile, implication networks revealed more biologically relevant molecular interactions than Boolean networks, Bayesian networks, and Pearson's correlation networks when evaluated with MSigDB database.

  16. Network-Based Identification of Biomarkers Coexpressed with Multiple Pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Nancy Lan; Wan, Ying-Wooi

    2014-01-01

    Unraveling complex molecular interactions and networks and incorporating clinical information in modeling will present a paradigm shift in molecular medicine. Embedding biological relevance via modeling molecular networks and pathways has become increasingly important for biomarker identification in cancer susceptibility and metastasis studies. Here, we give a comprehensive overview of computational methods used for biomarker identification, and provide a performance comparison of several network models used in studies of cancer susceptibility, disease progression, and prognostication. Specifically, we evaluated implication networks, Boolean networks, Bayesian networks, and Pearson’s correlation networks in constructing gene coexpression networks for identifying lung cancer diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers. The results show that implication networks, implemented in Genet package, identified sets of biomarkers that generated an accurate prediction of lung cancer risk and metastases; meanwhile, implication networks revealed more biologically relevant molecular interactions than Boolean networks, Bayesian networks, and Pearson’s correlation networks when evaluated with MSigDB database. PMID:25392692

  17. Relevance of biotic pathways to the long-term regulation of nuclear waste disposal. Estimation of radiation dose to man resulting from biotic transport: the BIOPORT/MAXI1 software package. Volume 5

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McKenzie, D.H.; Cadwell, L.L.; Gano, K.A.; Kennedy, W.E. Jr.; Napier, B.A.; Peloquin, R.A.; Prohammer, L.A.; Simmons, M.A.

    1985-10-01

    BIOPORT/MAXI1 is a collection of five computer codes designed to estimate the potential magnitude of the radiation dose to man resulting from biotic transport processes. Dose to man is calculated for ingestion of agricultural crops grown in contaminated soil, inhalation of resuspended radionuclides, and direct exposure to penetrating radiation resulting from the radionuclide concentrations established in the available soil surface by the biotic transport model. This document is designed as both an instructional and reference document for the BIOPORT/MAXI1 computer software package and has been written for two major audiences. The first audience includes persons concerned with the mathematical models of biological transport of commercial low-level radioactive wastes and the computer algorithms used to implement those models. The second audience includes persons concerned with exercising the computer program and exposure scenarios to obtain results for specific applications. The report contains sections describing the mathematical models, user operation of the computer programs, and program structure. Input and output for five sample problems are included. In addition, listings of the computer programs, data libraries, and dose conversion factors are provided in appendices.

  18. Relevance of biotic pathways to the long-term regulation of nuclear waste disposal. Estimation of radiation dose to man resulting from biotic transport: the BIOPORT/MAXI1 software package. Volume 5

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McKenzie, D.H.; Cadwell, L.L.; Gano, K.A.; Kennedy, W.E. Jr.; Napier, B.A.; Peloquin, R.A.; Prohammer, L.A.; Simmons, M.A.

    1985-10-01

    BIOPORT/MAXI1 is a collection of five computer codes designed to estimate the potential magnitude of the radiation dose to man resulting from biotic transport processes. Dose to man is calculated for ingestion of agricultural crops grown in contaminated soil, inhalation of resuspended radionuclides, and direct exposure to penetrating radiation resulting from the radionuclide concentrations established in the available soil surface by the biotic transport model. This document is designed as both an instructional and reference document for the BIOPORT/MAXI1 computer software package and has been written for two major audiences. The first audience includes persons concerned with the mathematical models of biological transport of commercial low-level radioactive wastes and the computer algorithms used to implement those models. The second audience includes persons concerned with exercising the computer program and exposure scenarios to obtain results for specific applications. The report contains sections describing the mathematical models, user operation of the computer programs, and program structure. Input and output for five sample problems are included. In addition, listings of the computer programs, data libraries, and dose conversion factors are provided in appendices

  19. A liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry method based on class characteristic fragmentation pathways to detect the class of indole-derivative synthetic cannabinoids in biological samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazzarino, Monica; de la Torre, Xavier; Botrè, Francesco

    2014-07-21

    This article describes a liquid chromatographic/tandem mass spectrometric method, based on the use of precursor ion scan as the acquisition mode, specifically developed to detect indole-derived cannabinoids (phenylacetylindoles, naphthoylindoles and benzoylindoles) in biological fluids (saliva, urine and blood). The method is designed to recognize one or more common "structural markers", corresponding to mass spectral fragments originating from the specific portion of the molecular structure that is common to the aminoalkylindole analogues and that is fundamental for their pharmacological classification. As such, the method is also suitable for detecting unknown substances, provided they contain the targeted portion of the molecular structure. The pre-treatment procedure consists in a liquid/liquid extraction step carried out at neutral pH: this is the only pretreatment in the case of analyses carried out in saliva, while it follows an enzymatic hydrolysis procedure in the case of urine samples, or a protein precipitation step in the case of blood samples. The chromatographic separation is achieved using an octadecyl reverse-phase 5 μm fused-core particle column; while the mass spectrometric detection is carried out by a triple-quadrupole instrument in positive electrospray ionization and precursor ion scan as acquisition mode, selecting, as mass spectral fragments, the indole (m/z 144), the carbonylnaphthalenyl (m/z 155) and the naphthalenyl (m/z 127) moieties. Once developed and optimized, the analytical procedure was validated in term of sensitivity (lower limits of detection in the range of 0.1-0.5 ng mL(-1)), specificity (no interference was detected at the retention times of the analytes under investigation), recovery (higher than 65% with a satisfactory repeatability: CV% lower than 10), matrix effect (lower than 30% for all the biological specimens tested), repeatability of the retention times (CV% lower than 0.1), robustness, and carry over (the positive

  20. Adenosine Receptors as a Biological Pathway for the Anti-Inflammatory and Beneficial Effects of Low Frequency Low Energy Pulsed Electromagnetic Fields

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katia Varani

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Several studies explored the biological effects of low frequency low energy pulsed electromagnetic fields (PEMFs on human body reporting different functional changes. Much research activity has focused on the mechanisms of interaction between PEMFs and membrane receptors such as the involvement of adenosine receptors (ARs. In particular, PEMF exposure mediates a significant upregulation of A2A and A3ARs expressed in various cells or tissues involving a reduction in most of the proinflammatory cytokines. Of particular interest is the observation that PEMFs, acting as modulators of adenosine, are able to increase the functionality of the endogenous agonist. By reviewing the scientific literature on joint cells, a double role for PEMFs could be hypothesized in vitro by stimulating cell proliferation, colonization of the scaffold, and production of tissue matrix. Another effect could be obtained in vivo after surgical implantation of the construct by favoring the anabolic activities of the implanted cells and surrounding tissues and protecting the construct from the catabolic effects of the inflammatory status. Moreover, a protective involvement of PEMFs on hypoxia damage in neuron-like cells and an anti-inflammatory effect in microglial cells have suggested the hypothesis of a positive impact of this noninvasive biophysical stimulus.

  1. Updating the Wnt pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Jia; Virshup, David M.

    2014-01-01

    In the three decades since the discovery of the Wnt1 proto-oncogene in virus-induced mouse mammary tumours, our understanding of the signalling pathways that are regulated by the Wnt proteins has progressively expanded. Wnts are involved in an complex signalling network that governs multiple biological processes and cross-talk with multiple additional signalling cascades, including the Notch, FGF (fibroblast growth factor), SHH (Sonic hedgehog), EGF (epidermal growth factor) and Hippo pathways. The Wnt signalling pathway also illustrates the link between abnormal regulation of the developmental processes and disease manifestation. Here we provide an overview of Wnt-regulated signalling cascades and highlight recent advances. We focus on new findings regarding the dedicated Wnt production and secretion pathway with potential therapeutic targets that might be beneficial for patients with Wnt-related diseases. PMID:25208913

  2. Feedstock Supply System Design and Economics for Conversion of Lignocellulosic Biomass to Hydrocarbon Fuels: Conversion Pathway: Biological Conversion of Sugars to Hydrocarbons The 2017 Design Case

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kevin Kenney; Kara G. Cafferty; Jacob J. Jacobson; Ian J Bonner; Garold L. Gresham; William A. Smith; David N. Thompson; Vicki S. Thompson; Jaya Shankar Tumuluru; Neal Yancey

    2013-09-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy promotes the production of a range of liquid fuels and fuel blendstocks from lignocellulosic biomass feedstocks by funding fundamental and applied research that advances the state of technology in biomass collection, conversion, and sustainability. As part of its involvement in this program, the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) investigates the feedstock logistics economics and sustainability of these fuels. Between 2000 and 2012, INL conducted a campaign to quantify the economics and sustainability of moving biomass from standing in the field or stand to the throat of the biomass conversion process. The goal of this program was to establish the current costs based on conventional equipment and processes, design improvements to the current system, and to mark annual improvements based on higher efficiencies or better designs. The 2012 programmatic target was to demonstrate a delivered biomass logistics cost of $35/dry ton. This goal was successfully achieved in 2012 by implementing field and process demonstration unit-scale data from harvest, collection, storage, preprocessing, handling, and transportation operations into INL’s biomass logistics model. Looking forward to 2017, the programmatic target is to supply biomass to the conversion facilities at a total cost of $80/dry ton and on specification with in-feed requirements. The goal of the 2017 Design Case is to enable expansion of biofuels production beyond highly productive resource areas by breaking the reliance of cost-competitive biofuel production on a single, abundant, low-cost feedstock. If this goal is not achieved, biofuel plants are destined to be small and/or clustered in select regions of the country that have a lock on low-cost feedstock. To put the 2017 cost target into perspective of past accomplishments of the cellulosic ethanol pathway, the $80 target encompasses total delivered feedstock cost, including both grower payment and logistics costs, while meeting all

  3. Decreased radioiodine uptake of FRTL-5 cells after {sup 131}I incubation in vitro: molecular biological investigations indicate a cell cycle-dependent pathway

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Meller, Birgit; Deisting, Wibke; Baehre, Manfred [University of Luebeck, Clinic of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, Luebeck (Germany); Gaspar, Erzsebet; Wenzel, Bjoern E. [University of Luebeck, Clinic of Internal Medicine I, Luebeck (Germany); Czarnocka, Barbara [Medical Centre of Postgraduate Education, Department of Clinical Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Warsaw (Poland)

    2008-06-15

    In radioiodine therapy the 'stunning phenomenon' is defined as a reduction of radioiodine uptake after diagnostic application of {sup 131}I. In the current study, we established an in vitro model based on the 'Fisher rat thyrocyte cell line no. 5' (FRTL-5) to investigate the stunning. TSH-stimulated FRTL-5 cells were incubated with {sup 131}I. Time-dependent {sup 131}I uptake and the viability of FRTL-5 cells were evaluated at 4-144 h after radioiodine application. All data was corrected for number of viable cells, half life and {sup 131}I concentration. Sodium iodide symporter (NIS) and the housekeeping gene ({beta}-actin, GAPDH) levels were quantified by quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Additionally, immunohistochemical staining (IHC) of NIS on the cell membrane was carried out. FRTL-5 monolayer cell cultures showed a specific maximum uptake of {sup 131}I 24-48 h after application. Significantly decreased {sup 131}I uptake values were observed after 72-144 h. The decrease in radioiodine uptake was correlated with decreasing mRNA levels of NIS and housekeeping genes. In parallel, unlike in controls, IHC staining of NIS on FRTL-5 cells declined significantly after {sup 131}I long-term incubation. It could be demonstrated that during {sup 131}I incubation of FRTL-5 cells, radioiodine uptake decreased significantly. Simultaneously decreasing levels of NIS mRNA and protein expression suggest a NIS-associated mechanism. Since mRNA levels of housekeeping genes decreased, too, the reduced NIS expression might be provoked by a cell cycle arrest. Our investigations recommend the FRTL-5 model as a valuable tool for further molecular biological investigations of the stunning phenomenon. (orig.)

  4. Development of a pluripotent stem cell derived neuronal model to identify chemically induced pathway perturbations in relation to neurotoxicity: Effects of CREB pathway inhibition

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pistollato, Francesca; Louisse, Jochem; Scelfo, Bibiana; Mennecozzi, Milena [Institute for Health and Consumer Protection (IHCP), JRC, Ispra (Italy); Accordi, Benedetta; Basso, Giuseppe [Oncohematology Laboratory, Department of Woman and Child Health, University of Padova, Padova (Italy); Gaspar, John Antonydas [Center of Physiology and Pathophysiology, Institute of Neurophysiology, University of Cologne, Cologne (Germany); Zagoura, Dimitra; Barilari, Manuela; Palosaari, Taina [Institute for Health and Consumer Protection (IHCP), JRC, Ispra (Italy); Sachinidis, Agapios [Center of Physiology and Pathophysiology, Institute of Neurophysiology, University of Cologne, Cologne (Germany); Bremer-Hoffmann, Susanne, E-mail: susanne.bremer@jrc.ec.europa.eu [Institute for Health and Consumer Protection (IHCP), JRC, Ispra (Italy)

    2014-10-15

    According to the advocated paradigm shift in toxicology, acquisition of knowledge on the mechanisms underlying the toxicity of chemicals, such as perturbations of biological pathways, is of primary interest. Pluripotent stem cells (PSCs), such as human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs), offer a unique opportunity to derive physiologically relevant human cell types to measure molecular and cellular effects of such pathway modulations. Here we compared the neuronal differentiation propensity of hESCs and hiPSCs with the aim to develop novel hiPSC-based tools for measuring pathway perturbation in relation to molecular and cellular effects in vitro. Among other fundamental pathways, also, the cAMP responsive element binding protein (CREB) pathway was activated in our neuronal models and gave us the opportunity to study time-dependent effects elicited by chemical perturbations of the CREB pathway in relation to cellular effects. We show that the inhibition of the CREB pathway, using 2-naphthol-AS-E-phosphate (KG-501), induced an inhibition of neurite outgrowth and synaptogenesis, as well as a decrease of MAP2{sup +} neuronal cells. These data indicate that a CREB pathway inhibition can be related to molecular and cellular effects that may be relevant for neurotoxicity testing, and, thus, qualify the use of our hiPSC-derived neuronal model for studying chemical-induced neurotoxicity resulting from pathway perturbations. - Highlights: • HESCs derived neuronal cells serve as benchmark for iPSC based neuronal toxicity test development. • Comparisons between hESCs and hiPSCs demonstrated variability of the epigenetic state • CREB pathway modulation have been explored in relation to the neurotoxicant exposure KG-501 • hiPSC might be promising tools to translate theoretical AoPs into toxicological in vitro tests.

  5. Soil is an important pathway of human lead exposure.

    OpenAIRE

    Mielke, H W; Reagan, P L

    1998-01-01

    This review shows the equal or greater importance of leaded gasoline-contaminated dust compared to lead-based paint to the child lead problem, and that soil lead, resulting from leaded gasoline and pulverized lead-based paint, is at least or more important than lead-based paint (intact and not pulverized) as a pathway of human lead exposure. Because lead-based paint is a high-dose source, the biologically relevant dosage is similar to lead in soil. Both lead-based paint and soil lead are asso...

  6. Reevaluating synthesis by biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yadav, Vikramaditya G; Stephanopoulos, Gregory

    2010-06-01

    The two cornerstones of synthetic biology are the introduction of the new technology of chemical DNA synthesis and its subsequent emphasis on the use of standardized biological parts in the construction of genetic systems aimed at eliciting of desired cellular behavior. A number of high-impact applications have been proposed for this technology, notable among them being the biological synthesis of valuable compounds for chemical or pharmaceutical use. To this end, synthetic biologists propose assembling metabolic pathways in toto by combining genes isolated from a variety of sources. While pathway construction is similar to approaches established long ago by Metabolic Engineering, the two methods deviate significantly when it comes to pathway optimization. Synthetic biologists opt for gene-combinatorial methods whereby large numbers of pathways, comprising several combinations of genes from different sources, and their mutants, are evaluated in search for an optimal pathway configuration. Metabolic engineering, on the contrary, aims to optimize pathways by tuning the activity of the intermediate reaction steps. Both, rational methods based on kinetics and regulation, as well as combinatorial methods, typically in this order, are used to this end. We argue that a systematic approach consisting of fine-tuning the properties of individual pathway components, prominently enzymes, is a superior strategy to searches spanning large genetic spaces in engineering optimal microbes for the production of chemical and pharmaceutical products. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. BALB/c mice: low sociability and other phenotypes that may be relevant to autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brodkin, Edward S

    2007-01-10

    Low sociability is one of the most prominent and disabling symptoms of autism. The biology of sociability is not well understood, and there is no available treatment that adequately improves social functioning in most autistic patients. The development of animal models of reduced sociability can aid in the elucidation of the biology of social behaviors, and may ultimately shed light on the biology of autism. This paper will review evidence that mice of the BALB/c inbred strain show relatively low levels of social interaction in various settings and across various stages of development, including male-male interactions, female-female interactions, male-female sexual interactions, and parenting behaviors. Taken together, this evidence suggests a generally low level of sociability in BALB/c mice that may be relevant to autism. BALB/c mice also show other phenotypes with possible relevance to autism, including relatively high levels of anxiety and aggressive behaviors, large brain size, underdevelopment of the corpus callosum, and low levels of brain serotonin. Further research is needed to determine the relationship among these BALB/c phenotypes, and to determine their possible relevance to autism. In conclusion, the BALB/c inbred strain may be a useful animal model for identifying genes and neurobiological pathways involved in autism-related phenotypes.

  8. Pathogenesis and biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winkler, Frank

    2018-01-01

    Metastasis to the brain is an increasing complication of solid cancers. Fortunately, our understanding of its pathogenesis has greatly increased in the last decade, with crucial insights into the molecular and cellular determinants of successful brain colonization; some aspects remain less well understood. The latter include the exact features of brain metastasis-initiating cancer cells, and a potential premetastatic niche. It is clear that a brain-arrested cancer cell has to master a sequence of steps to eventually grow to a clinically relevant brain metastasis. Various brain-specific cell types and molecular niches promote or hinder brain colonization in a dynamic and reciprocal manner. After mandatory extravasation and colonization of a brain-specific perivascular niche, the cancer cell can stay dormant, or further grow by dynamic interactions with cerebral blood vessels. In addition, the activation of certain molecular pathways on site of the cancer cell which are related to growth, motility, survival, and adaptation to the brain environment appears also important, given their characteristic modification in brain metastases of patients. A deeper understanding of the most vulnerable steps of the brain metastatic cascade may foster the development of novel preventive approaches, and that of core biologic mechanisms for macrometastatic growth and persistence will help to develop better therapeutics. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Pathway-based analysis using reduced gene subsets in genome-wide association studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liu Jianjun

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP analysis only captures a small proportion of associated genetic variants in Genome-Wide Association Studies (GWAS partly due to small marginal effects. Pathway level analysis incorporating prior biological information offers another way to analyze GWAS's of complex diseases, and promises to reveal the mechanisms leading to complex diseases. Biologically defined pathways are typically comprised of numerous genes. If only a subset of genes in the pathways is associated with disease then a joint analysis including all individual genes would result in a loss of power. To address this issue, we propose a pathway-based method that allows us to test for joint effects by using a pre-selected gene subset. In the proposed approach, each gene is considered as the basic unit, which reduces the number of genetic variants considered and hence reduces the degrees of freedom in the joint analysis. The proposed approach also can be used to investigate the joint effect of several genes in a candidate gene study. Results We applied this new method to a published GWAS of psoriasis and identified 6 biologically plausible pathways, after adjustment for multiple testing. The pathways identified in our analysis overlap with those reported in previous studies. Further, using simulations across a range of gene numbers and effect sizes, we demonstrate that the proposed approach enjoys higher power than several other approaches to detect associated pathways. Conclusions The proposed method could increase the power to discover susceptibility pathways and to identify associated genes using GWAS. In our analysis of genome-wide psoriasis data, we have identified a number of relevant pathways for psoriasis.

  10. Incorporation of enzyme concentrations into FBA and identification of optimal metabolic pathways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mukhopadhyay Subhasis

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In the present article, we propose a method for determining optimal metabolic pathways in terms of the level of concentration of the enzymes catalyzing various reactions in the entire metabolic network. The method, first of all, generates data on reaction fluxes in a pathway based on steady state condition. A set of constraints is formulated incorporating weighting coefficients corresponding to concentration of enzymes catalyzing reactions in the pathway. Finally, the rate of yield of the target metabolite, starting with a given substrate, is maximized in order to identify an optimal pathway through these weighting coefficients. Results The effectiveness of the present method is demonstrated on two synthetic systems existing in the literature, two pentose phosphate, two glycolytic pathways, core carbon metabolism and a large network of carotenoid biosynthesis pathway of various organisms belonging to different phylogeny. A comparative study with the existing extreme pathway analysis also forms a part of this investigation. Biological relevance and validation of the results are provided. Finally, the impact of the method on metabolic engineering is explained with a few examples. Conclusions The method may be viewed as determining an optimal set of enzymes that is required to get an optimal metabolic pathway. Although it is a simple one, it has been able to identify a carotenoid biosynthesis pathway and the optimal pathway of core carbon metabolic network that is closer to some earlier investigations than that obtained by the extreme pathway analysis. Moreover, the present method has identified correctly optimal pathways for pentose phosphate and glycolytic pathways. It has been mentioned using some examples how the method can suitably be used in the context of metabolic engineering.

  11. Systematic reconstruction of autism biology from massive genetic mutation profiles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Weijun; Zhang, Chaolin; Jiang, Yong-Hui; Brouwer, Cory R

    2018-04-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) affects 1% of world population and has become a pressing medical and social problem worldwide. As a paradigmatic complex genetic disease, ASD has been intensively studied and thousands of gene mutations have been reported. Because these mutations rarely recur, it is difficult to (i) pinpoint the fewer disease-causing versus majority random events and (ii) replicate or verify independent studies. A coherent and systematic understanding of autism biology has not been achieved. We analyzed 3392 and 4792 autism-related mutations from two large-scale whole-exome studies across multiple resolution levels, that is, variants (single-nucleotide), genes (protein-coding unit), and pathways (molecular module). These mutations do not recur or replicate at the variant level, but significantly and increasingly do so at gene and pathway levels. Genetic association reveals a novel gene + pathway dual-hit model, where the mutation burden becomes less relevant. In multiple independent analyses, hundreds of variants or genes repeatedly converge to several canonical pathways, either novel or literature-supported. These pathways define recurrent and systematic ASD biology, distinct from previously reported gene groups or networks. They also present a catalog of novel ASD risk factors including 118 variants and 72 genes. At a subpathway level, most variants disrupt the pathway-related gene functions, and in the same gene, they tend to hit residues extremely close to each other and in the same domain. Multiple interacting variants spotlight key modules, including the cAMP (adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate) second-messenger system and mGluR (metabotropic glutamate receptor) signaling regulation by GRKs (G protein-coupled receptor kinases). At a superpathway level, distinct pathways further interconnect and converge to three biology themes: synaptic function, morphology, and plasticity.

  12. Pathways and therapeutic targets in melanoma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shtivelman, Emma; Davies, Michael A.; Hwu, Patrick; Yang, James; Lotem, Michal; Oren, Moshe; Flaherty, Keith T.; Fisher, David E.

    2014-01-01

    This review aims to summarize the current knowledge of molecular pathways and their clinical relevance in melanoma. Metastatic melanoma was a grim diagnosis, but in recent years tremendous advances have been made in treatments. Chemotherapy provided little benefit in these patients, but development of targeted and new immune approaches made radical changes in prognosis. This would not have happened without remarkable advances in understanding the biology of disease and tremendous progress in the genomic (and other “omics”) scale analyses of tumors. The big problems facing the field are no longer focused exclusively on the development of new treatment modalities, though this is a very busy area of clinical research. The focus shifted now to understanding and overcoming resistance to targeted therapies, and understanding the underlying causes of the heterogeneous responses to immune therapy. PMID:24743024

  13. Screening-relevant age threshold of 70 years and older is a stronger determinant for the choice of adjuvant treatment in breast cancer patients than tumor biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inwald, E C; Ortmann, O; Koller, M; Zeman, F; Hofstädter, F; Evert, M; Brockhoff, G; Klinkhammer-Schalke, M

    2017-05-01

    The 70-year threshold determines whether patients are eligible or not for the breast cancer screening program in Germany. It is not known whether this age threshold also influences the choice of adjuvant treatment and ultimate outcome. 3463 patients were analyzed from the clinical cancer registry Regensburg (Germany) with primary, non-metastatic invasive breast cancer diagnosed between 2000 and 2012. The distribution of tumor biological subtypes was evaluated in breast cancer patients both in those eligible for screening (ESG, 50-69 years) and those not eligible for screening (NESG, ≥70 years). Local and systemic therapies in different subtypes as well as overall survival (OS) were analyzed. 2171 patients (62.7%) pertained to the ESG and 1292 patients (37.3%) referred to the NESG. The distribution of the common subtypes Luminal A, Luminal B, HER2-like, and Basal-like was comparable in both groups. Treatment varied considerably with less systemic therapies in all subtypes in patients in the NESG. Regarding local therapies, patients in the NESG also received less surgery and less radiotherapy. As to Luminal A patients, best OS was seen in patients receiving endocrine therapy (ET) (7-year OS of 95.6%) and CHT plus ET (7-year OS of 93.1%) in the ESG. In the NESG, best OS was seen in patients receiving CHT plus ET (7-year OS of 95.2%), whereas patients receiving only ET had a 7-year OS of 73.9%. Despite similar tumor biology, elderly patients are undertreated regarding both systemic and local therapies compared to younger patients, leading to reduced OS.

  14. Interleukin-17: characteristics, differentiation pathways, signaling and biological functions Interleuquina-17: características, vías de diferenciación, señalización y funciones biológicas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis Fernando García Moreno

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available Interleukin-17 is a proinflammatory cytokine with very pleiotropic biological functions. It is secreted by different subsets of activated T cells. Its receptor is found on different cells in a wide range of tissues. IL-17 has been shown to be involved in the development of autoimmune diseases, allograft rejection, cancer, immediate and delayed hypersensitivity responses, and control of infections. IL-17 seems to play an important role in the immune response against Mycobacterium tuberculosis. This review includes the recently elucidated aspects of this cytokine, particularly its molecular characteristics, differentiation pathways, signaling and functions. Interleuquina 17 (IL-17 es una citoquina proinflamatoria con diversas funciones biológicas secretada por varios subtipos de células T activadas. Su receptor se encuentra en los distintos tipos celulares de un amplio rango de tejidos. La IL-17 se ha relacionado con el desarrollo de enfermedades autoinmunes, rechazo de aloinjertos, cáncer, respuestas de hipersensibilidad inmediatas y tardías y control de infecciones, entre ellas la respuesta inmune contra Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Esta revisión pretende abarcar los aspectos hasta ahora elucidados sobre las características, las vías de diferenciación de las células productoras de IL-17, así como la señalización y funciones de ésta.

  15. Culturally Relevant Cyberbullying Prevention

    OpenAIRE

    Phillips, Gregory John

    2017-01-01

    In this action research study, I, along with a student intervention committee of 14 members, developed a cyberbullying intervention for a large urban high school on the west coast. This high school contained a predominantly African American student population. I aimed to discover culturally relevant cyberbullying prevention strategies for African American students. The intervention committee selected video safety messages featuring African American actors as the most culturally relevant cyber...

  16. Hyperpolarized NMR Probes for Biological Assays

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sebastian Meier

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available During the last decade, the development of nuclear spin polarization enhanced (hyperpolarized molecular probes has opened up new opportunities for studying the inner workings of living cells in real time. The hyperpolarized probes are produced ex situ, introduced into biological systems and detected with high sensitivity and contrast against background signals using high resolution NMR spectroscopy. A variety of natural, derivatized and designed hyperpolarized probes has emerged for diverse biological studies including assays of intracellular reaction progression, pathway kinetics, probe uptake and export, pH, redox state, reactive oxygen species, ion concentrations, drug efficacy or oncogenic signaling. These probes are readily used directly under natural conditions in biofluids and are often directly developed and optimized for cellular assays, thus leaving little doubt about their specificity and utility under biologically relevant conditions. Hyperpolarized molecular probes for biological NMR spectroscopy enable the unbiased detection of complex processes by virtue of the high spectral resolution, structural specificity and quantifiability of NMR signals. Here, we provide a survey of strategies used for the selection, design and use of hyperpolarized NMR probes in biological assays, and describe current limitations and developments.

  17. A method for integrating and ranking the evidence for biochemical pathways by mining reactions from text

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miwa, Makoto; Ohta, Tomoko; Rak, Rafal; Rowley, Andrew; Kell, Douglas B.; Pyysalo, Sampo; Ananiadou, Sophia

    2013-01-01

    Motivation: To create, verify and maintain pathway models, curators must discover and assess knowledge distributed over the vast body of biological literature. Methods supporting these tasks must understand both the pathway model representations and the natural language in the literature. These methods should identify and order documents by relevance to any given pathway reaction. No existing system has addressed all aspects of this challenge. Method: We present novel methods for associating pathway model reactions with relevant publications. Our approach extracts the reactions directly from the models and then turns them into queries for three text mining-based MEDLINE literature search systems. These queries are executed, and the resulting documents are combined and ranked according to their relevance to the reactions of interest. We manually annotate document-reaction pairs with the relevance of the document to the reaction and use this annotation to study several ranking methods, using various heuristic and machine-learning approaches. Results: Our evaluation shows that the annotated document-reaction pairs can be used to create a rule-based document ranking system, and that machine learning can be used to rank documents by their relevance to pathway reactions. We find that a Support Vector Machine-based system outperforms several baselines and matches the performance of the rule-based system. The success of the query extraction and ranking methods are used to update our existing pathway search system, PathText. Availability: An online demonstration of PathText 2 and the annotated corpus are available for research purposes at http://www.nactem.ac.uk/pathtext2/. Contact: makoto.miwa@manchester.ac.uk Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:23813008

  18. Management intensity alters decomposition via biological pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wickings, Kyle; Grandy, A. Stuart; Reed, Sasha; Cleveland, Cory

    2011-01-01

    Current conceptual models predict that changes in plant litter chemistry during decomposition are primarily regulated by both initial litter chemistry and the stage-or extent-of mass loss. Far less is known about how variations in decomposer community structure (e.g., resulting from different ecosystem management types) could influence litter chemistry during decomposition. Given the recent agricultural intensification occurring globally and the importance of litter chemistry in regulating soil organic matter storage, our objectives were to determine the potential effects of agricultural management on plant litter chemistry and decomposition rates, and to investigate possible links between ecosystem management, litter chemistry and decomposition, and decomposer community composition and activity. We measured decomposition rates, changes in litter chemistry, extracellular enzyme activity, microarthropod communities, and bacterial versus fungal relative abundance in replicated conventional-till, no-till, and old field agricultural sites for both corn and grass litter. After one growing season, litter decomposition under conventional-till was 20% greater than in old field communities. However, decomposition rates in no-till were not significantly different from those in old field or conventional-till sites. After decomposition, grass residue in both conventional- and no-till systems was enriched in total polysaccharides relative to initial litter, while grass litter decomposed in old fields was enriched in nitrogen-bearing compounds and lipids. These differences corresponded with differences in decomposer communities, which also exhibited strong responses to both litter and management type. Overall, our results indicate that agricultural intensification can increase litter decomposition rates, alter decomposer communities, and influence litter chemistry in ways that could have important and long-term effects on soil organic matter dynamics. We suggest that future efforts to more accurately predict soil carbon dynamics under different management regimes may need to explicitly consider how changes in litter chemistry during decomposition are influenced by the specific metabolic capabilities of the extant decomposer communities.

  19. Modelling biological pathway dynamics with Timed Automata

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schivo, Stefano; Scholma, Jetse; Wanders, B.; Urquidi Camacho, Ricardo A.; van der Vet, P.E.; Karperien, Hermanus Bernardus Johannes; Langerak, Romanus; van de Pol, Jan Cornelis; Post, Janine Nicole

    Living cells are constantly subjected to a plethora of environmental stimuli that require integration into an appropriate cellular response. This integration takes place through signal transduction events that form tightly interconnected networks. The understanding of these networks requires to

  20. Core bioactive components promoting blood circulation in the traditional Chinese medicine compound xueshuantong capsule (CXC based on the relevance analysis between chemical HPLC fingerprint and in vivo biological effects.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hong Liu

    Full Text Available Compound xueshuantong capsule (CXC is an oral traditional Chinese herbal formula (CHF comprised of Panax notoginseng (PN, Radix astragali (RA, Salvia miltiorrhizae (SM, and Radix scrophulariaceae (RS. The present investigation was designed to explore the core bioactive components promoting blood circulation in CXC using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC and animal studies. CXC samples were prepared with different proportions of the 4 herbs according to a four-factor, nine-level uniform design. CXC samples were assessed with HPLC, which identified 21 components. For the animal experiments, rats were soaked in ice water during the time interval between two adrenaline hydrochloride injections to reduce blood circulation. We assessed whole-blood viscosity (WBV, erythrocyte aggregation and red corpuscle electrophoresis indices (EAI and RCEI, respectively, plasma viscosity (PV, maximum platelet aggregation rate (MPAR, activated partial thromboplastin time (APTT, and prothrombin time (PT. Based on the hypothesis that CXC sample effects varied with differences in components, we performed grey relational analysis (GRA, principal component analysis (PCA, ridge regression (RR, and radial basis function (RBF to evaluate the contribution of each identified component. Our results indicate that panaxytriol, ginsenoside Rb1, angoroside C, protocatechualdehyde, ginsenoside Rd, and calycosin-7-O-β-D-glucoside are the core bioactive components, and that they might play different roles in the alleviation of circulation dysfunction. Panaxytriol and ginsenoside Rb1 had close relevance to red blood cell (RBC aggregation, angoroside C was related to platelet aggregation, protocatechualdehyde was involved in intrinsic clotting activity, ginsenoside Rd affected RBC deformability and plasma proteins, and calycosin-7-O-β-D-glucoside influenced extrinsic clotting activity. This study indicates that angoroside C, calycosin-7-O-β-D-glucoside, panaxytriol, and

  1. Nutritional Systems Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kasper

    and network biology has the potential to increase our understanding of how small molecules affect metabolic pathways and homeostasis, how this perturbation changes at the disease state, and to what extent individual genotypes contribute to this. A fruitful strategy in approaching and exploring the field...... biology research. The paper also shows as a proof-of-concept that a systems biology approach to diet is meaningful and demonstrates some basic principles on how to work with diet systematic. The second chapter of this thesis we developed the resource NutriChem v1.0. A foodchemical database linking...... sites of diet on the disease pathway. We propose a framework for interrogating the critical targets in colon cancer process and identifying plant-based dietary interventions as important modifiers using a systems chemical biology approach. The fifth chapter of the thesis is on discovering of novel anti...

  2. Plant synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Wusheng; Stewart, C Neal

    2015-05-01

    Plant synthetic biology is an emerging field that combines engineering principles with plant biology toward the design and production of new devices. This emerging field should play an important role in future agriculture for traditional crop improvement, but also in enabling novel bioproduction in plants. In this review we discuss the design cycles of synthetic biology as well as key engineering principles, genetic parts, and computational tools that can be utilized in plant synthetic biology. Some pioneering examples are offered as a demonstration of how synthetic biology can be used to modify plants for specific purposes. These include synthetic sensors, synthetic metabolic pathways, and synthetic genomes. We also speculate about the future of synthetic biology of plants. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Control-Relevant Upscaling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vakili Ghahani, S.A.

    2010-01-01

    An ‘upscaling/order-reduction’ solution transfers the relevant features of a geological model to a flow simulation model such that cost-efficient simulation, prediction and control of the fluid flow in an oil reservoir become feasible. In addition to the computational issues, in most reservoir

  4. Is Information Still Relevant?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Lia

    2013-01-01

    Introduction: The term "information" in information science does not share the characteristics of those of a nomenclature: it does not bear a generally accepted definition and it does not serve as the bases and assumptions for research studies. As the data deluge has arrived, is the concept of information still relevant for information…

  5. Relevance and Definition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watson, Rita

    1995-01-01

    Examined whether the use of superordinate terms in 206 children's definitions is predictable by relevance theory. Children (ages 5-10) gave definitions for 16 basic-level words and 4 superordinate words from natural kind and artifact semantic domains. Superordinate terms were used more frequently when they supported more inferences. Findings…

  6. Mining biological networks from full-text articles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czarnecki, Jan; Shepherd, Adrian J

    2014-01-01

    The study of biological networks is playing an increasingly important role in the life sciences. Many different kinds of biological system can be modelled as networks; perhaps the most important examples are protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks, metabolic pathways, gene regulatory networks, and signalling networks. Although much useful information is easily accessible in publicly databases, a lot of extra relevant data lies scattered in numerous published papers. Hence there is a pressing need for automated text-mining methods capable of extracting such information from full-text articles. Here we present practical guidelines for constructing a text-mining pipeline from existing code and software components capable of extracting PPI networks from full-text articles. This approach can be adapted to tackle other types of biological network.

  7. Molecular pathways

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cox, Thomas R; Erler, Janine Terra

    2014-01-01

    that 45% of deaths in the developed world are linked to fibrotic disease. Fibrosis and cancer are known to be inextricably linked; however, we are only just beginning to understand the common and overlapping molecular pathways between the two. Here, we discuss what is known about the intersection...... of fibrosis and cancer, with a focus on cancer metastasis, and highlight some of the exciting new potential clinical targets that are emerging from analysis of the molecular pathways associated with these two devastating diseases. Clin Cancer Res; 20(14); 3637-43. ©2014 AACR....

  8. KeyPathwayMinerWeb

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    List, Markus; Alcaraz, Nicolas; Dissing-Hansen, Martin

    2016-01-01

    , for instance), KeyPathwayMiner extracts connected sub-networks containing a high number of active or differentially regulated genes (proteins, metabolites) in the molecular profiles. The web interface at (http://keypathwayminer.compbio.sdu.dk) implements all core functionalities of the KeyPathwayMiner tool set......We present KeyPathwayMinerWeb, the first online platform for de novo pathway enrichment analysis directly in the browser. Given a biological interaction network (e.g. protein-protein interactions) and a series of molecular profiles derived from one or multiple OMICS studies (gene expression...... such as data integration, input of background knowledge, batch runs for parameter optimization and visualization of extracted pathways. In addition to an intuitive web interface, we also implemented a RESTful API that now enables other online developers to integrate network enrichment as a web service...

  9. Analysis of DNA double-strand break repair pathways in mice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brugmans, Linda; Kanaar, Roland; Essers, Jeroen

    2007-01-01

    During the last years significant new insights have been gained into the mechanism and biological relevance of DNA double-strand break (DSB) repair in relation to genome stability. DSBs are a highly toxic DNA lesion, because they can lead to chromosome fragmentation, loss and translocations, eventually resulting in cancer. DSBs can be induced by cellular processes such as V(D)J recombination or DNA replication. They can also be introduced by exogenous agents DNA damaging agents such as ionizing radiation or mitomycin C. During evolution several pathways have evolved for the repair of these DSBs. The most important DSB repair mechanisms in mammalian cells are nonhomologous end-joining and homologous recombination. By using an undamaged repair template, homologous recombination ensures accurate DSB repair, whereas the untemplated nonhomologous end-joining pathway does not. Although both pathways are active in mammals, the relative contribution of the two repair pathways to genome stability differs in the different cell types. Given the potential differences in repair fidelity, it is of interest to determine the relative contribution of homologous recombination and nonhomologous end-joining to DSB repair. In this review, we focus on the biological relevance of DSB repair in mammalian cells and the potential overlap between nonhomologous end-joining and homologous recombination in different tissues

  10. Korrek, volledig, relevant

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bergenholtz, Henning; Gouws, Rufus

    2007-01-01

    In explanatory dictionaries, both general language dictionaries and dictionaries dealing with languages for special purposes, the lexicographic definition is an important item to present the meaning of a given lemma. Due to a strong linguistic bias, resulting from an approach prevalent in the early...... phases of the development of theoretical lexicography, a distinction is often made between encyclopaedic information and semantic information in dictionary definitions, and dictionaries had often been criticized when their definitions were dominated by an encyclopaedic approach. This used to be seen...... as detrimental to the status of a dictionary as a container of linguistic knowledge. This paper shows that, from a lexicographic perspective, such a distinction is not relevant. What is important is that definitions should contain information that is relevant to and needed by the target users of that specific...

  11. Relevance and definition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watson, R

    1995-02-01

    The study examined whether the use of superordinate terms in children's definitions was predicted by relevance theory. Two hundred and six children aged five to ten years gave definitions for 16 basic-level words and four superordinate words from natural kind and artefact semantic domains. Superordinate terms were used more frequently when they supported more inferences. This was evidenced by their more frequent use in natural kind than in artefact domains, and more frequent use when the superordinate was itself defined by a semantically complex expression. When used, superordinates also usually occurred at the beginning of the definitional expression. It is argued that these findings reflect the speaker's intention to achieve optimal relevance, that is, to achieve maximum contextual effects with the least processing effort.

  12. Information Needs/Relevance

    OpenAIRE

    Wildemuth, Barbara M.

    2009-01-01

    A user's interaction with a DL is often initiated as the result of the user experiencing an information need of some kind. Aspects of that experience and how it might affect the user's interactions with the DL are discussed in this module. In addition, users continuously make decisions about and evaluations of the materials retrieved from a DL, relative to their information needs. Relevance judgments, and their relationship to the user's information needs, are discussed in this module. Draft

  13. Molecular Biology Database List.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burks, C

    1999-01-01

    Molecular Biology Database List (MBDL) includes brief descriptions and pointers to Web sites for the various databases described in this issue as well as other Web sites presenting data sets relevant to molecular biology. This information is compiled into a list (http://www.oup.co.uk/nar/Volume_27/Issue_01/summary/ gkc105_gml.html) which includes links both to source Web sites and to on-line versions of articles describing the databases. PMID:9847130

  14. T-cell Lymphomas: Updates in Biology and Diagnosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ondrejka, Sarah L; Hsi, Eric D

    2016-03-01

    Nodal-based peripheral T-cell lymphomas are heterogeneous malignancies with overlapping morphology and clinical features. However, the current World Health Organization classification scheme separates these tumors into prognostically relevant categories. Since its publication, efforts to uncover the gene expression profiles and molecular alterations have subdivided these categories further, and distinct subgroups are emerging with specific profiles that reflect the cell of origin for these tumors and their microenvironment. Identification of the perturbed biologic pathways may prove useful in selecting patients for specific therapies and associating biomarkers with survival and relapse. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. The genomic scrapheap challenge; extracting relevant data from unmapped whole genome sequencing reads, including strain specific genomic segments, in rats

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Der Weide, Robin H.; Simonis, Marieke; Hermsen, Roel; Toonen, Pim; Cuppen, Edwin; de Ligt, Joep

    2016-01-01

    Unmapped next-generation sequencing reads are typically ignored while they contain biologically relevant information. We systematically analyzed unmapped reads from whole genome sequencing of 33 inbred rat strains. High quality reads were selected and enriched for biologically relevant sequences;

  16. A pathway-centric approach to rare variant association analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richardson, Tom G; Timpson, Nicholas J; Campbell, Colin; Gaunt, Tom R

    2017-01-01

    Current endeavours in rare variant analysis are typically underpowered when investigating association signals from individual genes. We undertook an approach to rare variant analysis which utilises biological pathway information to analyse functionally relevant genes together. Conventional filtering approaches for rare variant analysis are based on variant consequence and are therefore confined to coding regions of the genome. Therefore, we undertook a novel approach to this process by obtaining functional annotations from the Combined Annotation Dependent Depletion (CADD) tool, which allowed potentially deleterious variants from intronic regions of genes to be incorporated into analyses. This work was undertaken using whole-genome sequencing data from the UK10K project. Rare variants from the KEGG pathway for arginine and proline metabolism were collectively associated with systolic blood pressure (P=3.32x10−5) based on analyses using the optimal sequence kernel association test. Variants along this pathway also showed evidence of replication using imputed data from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children cohort (P=0.02). Subsequent analyses found that the strength of evidence diminished when analysing genes in this pathway individually, suggesting that they would have been overlooked in a conventional gene-based analysis. Future studies that adopt similar approaches to investigate polygenic effects should yield value in better understanding the genetic architecture of complex disease. PMID:27577545

  17. Improving carbon fixation pathways

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ducat, DC; Silver, PA

    2012-08-01

    A recent resurgence in basic and applied research on photosynthesis has been driven in part by recognition that fulfilling future food and energy requirements will necessitate improvements in crop carbon-fixation efficiencies. Photosynthesis in traditional terrestrial crops is being reexamined in light of molecular strategies employed by photosynthetic microbes to enhance the activity of the Calvin cycle. Synthetic biology is well-situated to provide original approaches for compartmentalizing and enhancing photosynthetic reactions in a species independent manner. Furthermore, the elucidation of alternative carbon-fixation routes distinct from the Calvin cycle raises possibilities that novel pathways and organisms can be utilized to fix atmospheric carbon dioxide into useful materials.

  18. [Relevant public health enteropathogens].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riveros, Maribel; Ochoa, Theresa J

    2015-01-01

    Diarrhea remains the third leading cause of death in children under five years, despite recent advances in the management and prevention of this disease. It is caused by multiple pathogens, however, the prevalence of each varies by age group, geographical area and the scenario where cases (community vs hospital) are recorded. The most relevant pathogens in public health are those associated with the highest burden of disease, severity, complications and mortality. In our country, norovirus, Campylobacter and diarrheagenic E. coli are the most prevalent pathogens at the community level in children. In this paper we review the local epidemiology and potential areas of development in five selected pathogens: rotavirus, norovirus, Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC), Shigella and Salmonella. Of these, rotavirus is the most important in the pediatric population and the main agent responsible for child mortality from diarrhea. The introduction of rotavirus vaccination in Peru will have a significant impact on disease burden and mortality from diarrhea. However, surveillance studies are needed to determine the impact of vaccination and changes in the epidemiology of diarrhea in Peru following the introduction of new vaccines, as well as antibiotic resistance surveillance of clinical relevant bacteria.

  19. Aberrant Signaling Pathways in Glioma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nakada, Mitsutoshi; Kita, Daisuke; Watanabe, Takuya; Hayashi, Yutaka; Teng, Lei; Pyko, Ilya V.; Hamada, Jun-Ichiro

    2011-01-01

    Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), a WHO grade IV malignant glioma, is the most common and lethal primary brain tumor in adults; few treatments are available. Median survival rates range from 12–15 months. The biological characteristics of this tumor are exemplified by prominent proliferation, active invasiveness, and rich angiogenesis. This is mainly due to highly deregulated signaling pathways in the tumor. Studies of these signaling pathways have greatly increased our understanding of the biology and clinical behavior of GBM. An integrated view of signal transduction will provide a more useful approach in designing novel therapies for this devastating disease. In this review, we summarize the current understanding of GBM signaling pathways with a focus on potential molecular targets for anti-signaling molecular therapies

  20. Signaling pathways in melanosome biogenesis and pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiaffino, Maria Vittoria

    2010-07-01

    Melanosomes are the specialized intracellular organelles of pigment cells devoted to the synthesis, storage and transport of melanin pigments, which are responsible for most visible pigmentation in mammals and other vertebrates. As a direct consequence, any genetic mutation resulting in alteration of melanosomal function, either because affecting pigment cell survival, migration and differentiation, or because interfering with melanosome biogenesis, transport and transfer to keratinocytes, is immediately translated into color variations of skin, fur, hair or eyes. Thus, over 100 genes and proteins have been identified as pigmentary determinants in mammals, providing us with a deep understanding of this biological system, which functions by using mechanisms and processes that have parallels in other tissues and organs. In particular, many genes implicated in melanosome biogenesis have been characterized, so that melanosomes represent an incredible source of information and a model for organelles belonging to the secretory pathway. Furthermore, the function of melanosomes can be associated with common physiological phenotypes, such as variation of pigmentation among individuals, and with rare pathological conditions, such as albinism, characterized by severe visual defects. Among the most relevant mechanisms operating in melanosome biogenesis are the signal transduction pathways mediated by two peculiar G protein-coupled receptors: the melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R), involved in the fair skin/red hair phenotype and skin cancer; and OA1 (GPR143), whose loss-of-function results in X-linked ocular albinism. This review will focus on the most recent novelties regarding the functioning of these two receptors, by highlighting emerging signaling mechanisms and general implications for cell biology and pathology. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. From early lessons to new frontiers: the worm as a treasure trove of small RNA biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Youngman, Elaine M; Claycomb, Julie M

    2014-01-01

    In the past 20 years, the tiny soil nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has provided critical insights into our understanding of the breadth of small RNA-mediated gene regulatory activities. The first microRNA was identified in C. elegans in 1993, and the understanding that dsRNA was the driving force behind RNA-mediated gene silencing came from experiments performed in C. elegans in 1998. Likewise, early genetic screens in C. elegans for factors involved in RNA interference pointed to conserved mechanisms for small RNA-mediated gene silencing pathways, placing the worm squarely among the founding fathers of a now extensive field of molecular biology. Today, the worm continues to be at the forefront of ground-breaking insight into small RNA-mediated biology. Recent studies have revealed with increasing mechanistic clarity that C. elegans possesses an extensive nuclear small RNA regulatory network that encompasses not only gene silencing but also gene activating roles. Further, a portrait is emerging whereby small RNA pathways play key roles in integrating responses to environmental stimuli and transmitting epigenetic information about such responses from one generation to the next. Here we discuss endogenous small RNA pathways in C. elegans and the insight worm biology has provided into the mechanisms employed by these pathways. We touch on the increasingly spectacular diversity of small RNA biogenesis and function, and discuss the relevance of lessons learned in the worm for human biology.

  2. From early lessons to new frontiers: The worm as a treasure trove of small RNA biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elaine M. Youngman

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available In the past twenty years, the tiny soil nematode C. elegans has provided critical insights into our understanding of the breadth of small RNA-mediated gene regulatory activities. The first microRNA was identified in C. elegans in 1993, and the understanding that dsRNA was the driving force behind RNA-mediated gene silencing came from experiments performed in C. elegans in 1998. Likewise, early genetic screens in C. elegans for factors involved in RNAi pointed to conserved mechanisms for small RNA-mediated gene silencing pathways, placing the worm squarely among the founding fathers of a now extensive field of molecular biology. Today, the worm continues to be at the forefront of ground-breaking insight into small RNA-mediated biology. Recent studies have revealed with increasing mechanistic clarity that C. elegans possesses an extensive nuclear small RNA regulatory network that encompasses not only gene silencing but also gene activating roles. Further, a portrait is emerging whereby small RNA pathways play key roles in integrating responses to environmental stimuli and transmitting epigenetic information about such responses from one generation to the next. Here we discuss endogenous small RNA pathways in C. elegans and the insight worm biology has provided into the mechanisms employed by these pathways. We touch on the increasingly spectacular diversity of small RNA biogenesis and function, and discuss the relevance of lessons learned in the worm for human biology.

  3. The Biology of Cancer Health Disparities

    Science.gov (United States)

    These examples show how biology contributes to health disparities (differences in disease incidence and outcomes among distinct racial and ethnic groups, ), and how biological factors interact with other relevant factors, such as diet and the environment.

  4. Single Molecule Fluorescence: from Physical Fascination to Biological Relevance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Segers-Nolten, Gezina M.J.

    2003-01-01

    Confocal fluorescence microscopy is particularly well-known from the beautiful images that have been obtained with this technique from cells. Several cellular components could be nicely visualized simultaneously by staining them with different fluorophores. Not only for ensemble applications but

  5. Colloidal stability of silver nanoparticles in biologically relevant conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    MacCuspie, Robert I.

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the colloidal stability of nanoparticles (NPs) plays a key role in phenomenological interpretation of toxicological experiments, particularly if single NPs or their aggregates or agglomerates determine the dominant experimental result. This report examines a variety of instrumental techniques for surveying the colloidal stability of aqueous suspensions of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs), including atomic force microscopy, dynamic light scattering, and colorimetry. It was found that colorimetry can adequately determine the concentration of single AgNPs that remained in solution if morphological information about agglomerates is not required. The colloidal stability of AgNPs with various surface capping agents and in various solvents ranging from cell culture media to different electrolytes of several concentrations, and in different pH conditions was determined. It was found that biocompatible bulky capping agents, such as bovine serum albumin or starch, that provided steric colloidal stabilization, as opposed to purely electrostatic stabilization such as with citrate AgNPs, provided better retention of single AgNPs in solution over a variety of conditions for up to 64 h of observation.

  6. Towards a barrier height benchmark set for biologically relevant systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jimmy C. Kromann

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available We have collected computed barrier heights and reaction energies (and associated model structures for five enzymes from studies published by Himo and co-workers. Using this data, obtained at the B3LYP/6- 311+G(2d,2p[LANL2DZ]//B3LYP/6-31G(d,p level of theory, we then benchmark PM6, PM7, PM7-TS, and DFTB3 and discuss the influence of system size, bulk solvation, and geometry re-optimization on the error. The mean absolute differences (MADs observed for these five enzyme model systems are similar to those observed for PM6 and PM7 for smaller systems (10–15 kcal/mol, while DFTB results in a MAD that is significantly lower (6 kcal/mol. The MADs for PMx and DFTB3 are each dominated by large errors for a single system and if the system is disregarded the MADs fall to 4–5 kcal/mol. Overall, results for the condensed phase are neither more or less accurate relative to B3LYP than those in the gas phase. With the exception of PM7-TS, the MAD for small and large structural models are very similar, with a maximum deviation of 3 kcal/mol for PM6. Geometry optimization with PM6 shows that for one system this method predicts a different mechanism compared to B3LYP/6-31G(d,p. For the remaining systems, geometry optimization of the large structural model increases the MAD relative to single points, by 2.5 and 1.8 kcal/mol for barriers and reaction energies. For the small structural model, the corresponding MADs decrease by 0.4 and 1.2 kcal/mol, respectively. However, despite these small changes, significant changes in the structures are observed for some systems, such as proton transfer and hydrogen bonding rearrangements. The paper represents the first step in the process of creating a benchmark set of barriers computed for systems that are relatively large and representative of enzymatic reactions, a considerable challenge for any one research group but possible through a concerted effort by the community. We end by outlining steps needed to expand and improve the data set and how other researchers can contribute to the process.

  7. Tailor-Made Fluorescent Trilobolide To Study Its Biological Relevance

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Jurášek, M.; Rimpelová, S.; Kmoníčková, Eva; Drašar, P.; Ruml, T.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 57, č. 19 (2014), s. 7947-7954 ISSN 0022-2623 Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GA14-28334S; GA MŠMT(CZ) 20/2014 Program:GA Institutional support: RVO:68378041 Keywords : trilobolide * nitric oxide * endoplasmic reticulum Subject RIV: FR - Pharmacology ; Medidal Chemistry Impact factor: 5.447, year: 2014

  8. Biologically Relevant Exposure Science for 21st Century Toxicity Testing

    Science.gov (United States)

    High visibility efforts in toxicity testing and computational toxicology including the recent NRC report, Toxicity Testing in the 21st Century: a Vision and Strategy (NRC, 2007), raise important research questions and opportunities for the field of exposure science. The authors ...

  9. The importance of biologically relevant microclimates in habitat suitability assessments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johanna Varner

    Full Text Available Predicting habitat suitability under climate change is vital to conserving biodiversity. However, current species distribution models rely on coarse scale climate data, whereas fine scale microclimate data may be necessary to assess habitat suitability and generate predictive models. Here, we evaluate disparities between temperature data at the coarse scale from weather stations versus fine-scale data measured in microhabitats required for a climate-sensitive mammal, the American pika (Ochotona princeps. We collected two years of temperature data in occupied talus habitats predicted to be suitable (high elevation and unsuitable (low elevation by the bioclimatic envelope approach. At low elevations, talus surface and interstitial microclimates drastically differed from ambient temperatures measured on-site and at a nearby weather station. Interstitial talus temperatures were frequently decoupled from high ambient temperatures, resulting in instantaneous disparities of over 30 °C between these two measurements. Microhabitat temperatures were also highly heterogeneous, such that temperature measurements within the same patch of talus were not more correlated than measurements at distant patches. An experimental manipulation revealed that vegetation cover may cool the talus surface by up to 10 °C during the summer, which may contribute to this spatial heterogeneity. Finally, low elevation microclimates were milder and less variable than typical alpine habitat, suggesting that, counter to species distribution model predictions, these seemingly unsuitable habitats may actually be better refugia for this species under climate change. These results highlight the importance of fine-scale microhabitat data in habitat assessments and underscore the notion that some critical refugia may be counterintuitive.

  10. The importance of biologically relevant microclimates in habitat suitability assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varner, Johanna; Dearing, M Denise

    2014-01-01

    Predicting habitat suitability under climate change is vital to conserving biodiversity. However, current species distribution models rely on coarse scale climate data, whereas fine scale microclimate data may be necessary to assess habitat suitability and generate predictive models. Here, we evaluate disparities between temperature data at the coarse scale from weather stations versus fine-scale data measured in microhabitats required for a climate-sensitive mammal, the American pika (Ochotona princeps). We collected two years of temperature data in occupied talus habitats predicted to be suitable (high elevation) and unsuitable (low elevation) by the bioclimatic envelope approach. At low elevations, talus surface and interstitial microclimates drastically differed from ambient temperatures measured on-site and at a nearby weather station. Interstitial talus temperatures were frequently decoupled from high ambient temperatures, resulting in instantaneous disparities of over 30 °C between these two measurements. Microhabitat temperatures were also highly heterogeneous, such that temperature measurements within the same patch of talus were not more correlated than measurements at distant patches. An experimental manipulation revealed that vegetation cover may cool the talus surface by up to 10 °C during the summer, which may contribute to this spatial heterogeneity. Finally, low elevation microclimates were milder and less variable than typical alpine habitat, suggesting that, counter to species distribution model predictions, these seemingly unsuitable habitats may actually be better refugia for this species under climate change. These results highlight the importance of fine-scale microhabitat data in habitat assessments and underscore the notion that some critical refugia may be counterintuitive.

  11. A novel dysregulated pathway-identification analysis based on global influence of within-pathway effects and crosstalk between pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Junwei; Li, Chunquan; Yang, Haixiu; Xu, Yanjun; Zhang, Chunlong; Ma, Jiquan; Shi, Xinrui; Liu, Wei; Shang, Desi; Yao, Qianlan; Zhang, Yunpeng; Su, Fei; Feng, Li; Li, Xia

    2015-01-01

    Identifying dysregulated pathways from high-throughput experimental data in order to infer underlying biological insights is an important task. Current pathway-identification methods focus on single pathways in isolation; however, consideration of crosstalk between pathways could improve our understanding of alterations in biological states. We propose a novel method of pathway analysis based on global influence (PAGI) to identify dysregulated pathways, by considering both within-pathway effects and crosstalk between pathways. We constructed a global gene–gene network based on the relationships among genes extracted from a pathway database. We then evaluated the extent of differential expression for each gene, and mapped them to the global network. The random walk with restart algorithm was used to calculate the extent of genes affected by global influence. Finally, we used cumulative distribution functions to determine the significance values of the dysregulated pathways. We applied the PAGI method to five cancer microarray datasets, and compared our results with gene set enrichment analysis and five other methods. Based on these analyses, we demonstrated that PAGI can effectively identify dysregulated pathways associated with cancer, with strong reproducibility and robustness. We implemented PAGI using the freely available R-based and Web-based tools (http://bioinfo.hrbmu.edu.cn/PAGI). PMID:25551156

  12. Chemical reporters for biological discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grammel, Markus; Hang, Howard C

    2013-08-01

    Functional tools are needed to understand complex biological systems. Here we review how chemical reporters in conjunction with bioorthogonal labeling methods can be used to image and retrieve nucleic acids, proteins, glycans, lipids and other metabolites in vitro, in cells as well as in whole organisms. By tagging these biomolecules, researchers can now monitor their dynamics in living systems and discover specific substrates of cellular pathways. These advances in chemical biology are thus providing important tools to characterize biological pathways and are poised to facilitate our understanding of human diseases.

  13. Adverse Outcome Pathway (AOP) Network Development for Fatty Liver

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adverse outcome pathways (AOPs) are descriptive biological sequences that start from a molecular initiating event (MIE) and end with an adverse health outcome. AOPs provide biological context for high throughput chemical testing and further prioritize environmental health risk re...

  14. Relevance of the axis spermidine/eIF5A for plant growth and development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Borja eBelda Palazón

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available One key role of the essential polyamine spermidine in eukaryotes is to provide the 4-aminobutyl moiety group destined to the post-translational modification of a lysine in the highly conserved translation factor eIF5A. This modification is catalyzed by two sequential enzymatic steps leading to the activation of eIF5A by the conversion of one conserved lysine to the unusual amino acid hypusine. The active translation factor facilitates the sequence-specific translation of polyproline sequences that otherwise cause ribosome stalling. In spite of the well-characterized involvement of active eIF5A in the translation of proline repeat-rich proteins, its biological role has been recently elucidated only in mammals, and it is poorly described at the functional level in plants. Here we describe the alterations in plant growth and development caused by RNAi-mediated conditional genetic inactivation of the hypusination pathway in Arabidopsis thaliana by knocking-down the enzyme deoxyhypusine synthase. We have uncovered that spermidine-mediated activation of eIF5A by hypusination is involved in several aspects of plant biology such as the control of flowering time, the aerial and root architecture and root hair growth. In addition this pathway is required for adaptation to challenging growth conditions such as high salt and high glucose medium and to elevated concentrations of the plant hormone ABA. We have also performed a bioinformatic analysis of polyproline-rich containing proteins as putative eIF5A targets to uncover their organization in clusters of protein networks to find molecular culprits for the disclosed phenotypes. This study represents a first attempt to provide a holistic view of the biological relevance of the spermidine-dependent hypusination pathway for plant growth and development.

  15. Pivotal role of the muscle-contraction pathway in cryptorchidism and evidence for genomic connections with cardiomyopathy pathways in RASopathies

    KAUST Repository

    Cannistraci, Carlo

    2013-02-14

    Background: Cryptorchidism is the most frequent congenital disorder in male children; however the genetic causes of cryptorchidism remain poorly investigated. Comparative integratomics combined with systems biology approach was employed to elucidate genetic factors and molecular pathways underlying testis descent. Methods. Literature mining was performed to collect genomic loci associated with cryptorchidism in seven mammalian species. Information regarding the collected candidate genes was stored in MySQL relational database. Genomic view of the loci was presented using Flash GViewer web tool (http://gmod.org/wiki/Flashgviewer/). DAVID Bioinformatics Resources 6.7 was used for pathway enrichment analysis. Cytoscape plug-in PiNGO 1.11 was employed for protein-network-based prediction of novel candidate genes. Relevant protein-protein interactions were confirmed and visualized using the STRING database (version 9.0). Results. The developed cryptorchidism gene atlas includes 217 candidate loci (genes, regions involved in chromosomal mutations, and copy number variations) identified at the genomic, transcriptomic, and proteomic level. Human orthologs of the collected candidate loci were presented using a genomic map viewer. The cryptorchidism gene atlas is freely available online: http://www.integratomics-time.com/cryptorchidism/. Pathway analysis suggested the presence of twelve enriched pathways associated with the list of 179 literature-derived candidate genes. Additionally, a list of 43 network-predicted novel candidate genes was significantly associated with four enriched pathways. Joint pathway analysis of the collected and predicted candidate genes revealed the pivotal importance of the muscle-contraction pathway in cryptorchidism and evidence for genomic associations with cardiomyopathy pathways in RASopathies. Conclusions: The developed gene atlas represents an important resource for the scientific community researching genetics of cryptorchidism. The

  16. Vygotsky's Crisis: Argument, context, relevance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hyman, Ludmila

    2012-06-01

    Vygotsky's The Historical Significance of the Crisis in Psychology (1926-1927) is an important text in the history and philosophy of psychology that has only become available to scholars in 1982 in Russian, and in 1997 in English. The goal of this paper is to introduce Vygotsky's conception of psychology to a wider audience. I argue that Vygotsky's argument about the "crisis" in psychology and its resolution can be fully understood only in the context of his social and political thinking. Vygotsky shared the enthusiasm, widespread among Russian leftist intelligentsia in the 1920s, that Soviet society had launched an unprecedented social experiment: The socialist revolution opened the way for establishing social conditions that would let the individual flourish. For Vygotsky, this meant that "a new man" of the future would become "the first and only species in biology that would create itself." He envisioned psychology as a science that would serve this humanist teleology. I propose that The Crisis is relevant today insofar as it helps us define a fundamental problem: How can we systematically account for the development of knowledge in psychology? I evaluate how Vygotsky addresses this problem as a historian of the crisis. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Keeping climate research relevant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rubin, E.S.; Lave, L.B.; Morgan, M.G.

    1992-01-01

    Recent post-mortems of the National Acid Precipitation Assessment Program (NAPAP) confirmed what Congress and other key parties to the acid rain debate already knew: that the 10-year, half-billion-dollar interagency program to guide US policy on acid rain control proved largely irrelevant to the effort to forge the new Clean Air Act last fall. Although NAPAP won praise for its scientific accomplishments, the program failed in its primary mission - to provide policy-relevant information in a timely manner. Now, government attempts to deal with the more difficult and far-reaching environmental issues associated with global warming appear to be headed down the same ill-fated path. Global climate change has become the most important environmental issue on the world agenda. The potentially enormous human and ecological implications of global warming - rising sea levels, altered precipitation patterns, and damage to natural ecosystems - have generated concern. But the equally large uncertainties about the timing and magnitude of possible effects, coupled with questions about the costs and impacts of possible abatement measures, have thus far kept policymakers from agreeing on what to do

  18. Systems Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    IAS Admin

    Systems biology seeks to study biological systems as a whole, contrary to the reductionist approach that has dominated biology. Such a view of biological systems emanating from strong foundations of molecular level understanding of the individual components in terms of their form, function and interactions is promising to ...

  19. Bystander effect: Biological endpoints and microarray analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chaudhry, M. Ahmad [Department of Medical Laboratory and Radiation Sciences, College of Nursing and Health Sciences, University of Vermont, 302 Rowell Building, Burlington, VT 05405 (United States) and DNA Microarray Facility, University of Vermont, Burlington, VT 05405 (United States)]. E-mail: mchaudhr@uvm.edu

    2006-05-11

    In cell populations exposed to ionizing radiation, the biological effects occur in a much larger proportion of cells than are estimated to be traversed by radiation. It has been suggested that irradiated cells are capable of providing signals to the neighboring unirradiated cells resulting in damage to these cells. This phenomenon is termed the bystander effect. The bystander effect induces persistent, long-term, transmissible changes that result in delayed death and neoplastic transformation. Because the bystander effect is relevant to carcinogenesis, it could have significant implications for risk estimation for radiation exposure. The nature of the bystander effect signal and how it impacts the unirradiated cells remains to be elucidated. Examination of the changes in gene expression could provide clues to understanding the bystander effect and could define the signaling pathways involved in sustaining damage to these cells. The microarray technology serves as a tool to gain insight into the molecular pathways leading to bystander effect. Using medium from irradiated normal human diploid lung fibroblasts as a model system we examined gene expression alterations in bystander cells. The microarray data revealed that the radiation-induced gene expression profile in irradiated cells is different from unirradiated bystander cells suggesting that the pathways leading to biological effects in the bystander cells are different from the directly irradiated cells. The genes known to be responsive to ionizing radiation were observed in irradiated cells. Several genes were upregulated in cells receiving media from irradiated cells. Surprisingly no genes were found to be downregulated in these cells. A number of genes belonging to extracellular signaling, growth factors and several receptors were identified in bystander cells. Interestingly 15 genes involved in the cell communication processes were found to be upregulated. The induction of receptors and the cell

  20. Bystander effect: Biological endpoints and microarray analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chaudhry, M. Ahmad

    2006-01-01

    In cell populations exposed to ionizing radiation, the biological effects occur in a much larger proportion of cells than are estimated to be traversed by radiation. It has been suggested that irradiated cells are capable of providing signals to the neighboring unirradiated cells resulting in damage to these cells. This phenomenon is termed the bystander effect. The bystander effect induces persistent, long-term, transmissible changes that result in delayed death and neoplastic transformation. Because the bystander effect is relevant to carcinogenesis, it could have significant implications for risk estimation for radiation exposure. The nature of the bystander effect signal and how it impacts the unirradiated cells remains to be elucidated. Examination of the changes in gene expression could provide clues to understanding the bystander effect and could define the signaling pathways involved in sustaining damage to these cells. The microarray technology serves as a tool to gain insight into the molecular pathways leading to bystander effect. Using medium from irradiated normal human diploid lung fibroblasts as a model system we examined gene expression alterations in bystander cells. The microarray data revealed that the radiation-induced gene expression profile in irradiated cells is different from unirradiated bystander cells suggesting that the pathways leading to biological effects in the bystander cells are different from the directly irradiated cells. The genes known to be responsive to ionizing radiation were observed in irradiated cells. Several genes were upregulated in cells receiving media from irradiated cells. Surprisingly no genes were found to be downregulated in these cells. A number of genes belonging to extracellular signaling, growth factors and several receptors were identified in bystander cells. Interestingly 15 genes involved in the cell communication processes were found to be upregulated. The induction of receptors and the cell

  1. The quassinoid derivative NBT-272 targets both the AKT and ERK signaling pathways in embryonal tumors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castelletti, Deborah; Fiaschetti, Giulio; Di Dato, Valeria; Ziegler, Urs; Kumps, Candy; De Preter, Katleen; Zollo, Massimo; Speleman, Frank; Shalaby, Tarek; De Martino, Daniela; Berg, Thorsten; Eggert, Angelika; Arcaro, Alexandre; Grotzer, Michael A

    2010-12-01

    The quassinoid analogue NBT-272 has been reported to inhibit MYC, thus warranting a further effort 7to better understand its preclinical properties in models of embryonal tumors (ET), a family of childhood malignancies sharing relevant biological and genetic features such as deregulated expression of MYC oncogenes. In our study, NBT-272 displayed a strong antiproliferative activity in vitro that resulted from the combination of diverse biological effects, ranging from G(1)/S arrest of the cell cycle to apoptosis and autophagy. The compound prevented the full activation of both eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4E (eIF4E) and its binding protein 4EBP-1, regulating cap-dependent protein translation. Interestingly, all responses induced by NBT-272 in ET could be attributed to interference with 2 main proproliferative signaling pathways, that is, the AKT and the MEK/extracellular signal-regulated kinase pathways. These findings also suggested that the depleting effect of NBT-272 on MYC protein expression occurred via indirect mechanisms, rather than selective inhibition. Finally, the ability of NBT-272 to arrest tumor growth in a xenograft model of neuroblastoma plays a role in the strong antitumor activity of this compound, both in vitro and in vivo, with its potential to target cell-survival pathways that are relevant for the development and progression of ET.

  2. Evolutionary conservation and network structure characterize genes of phenotypic relevance for mitosis in human.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marek Ostaszewski

    Full Text Available The impact of gene silencing on cellular phenotypes is difficult to establish due to the complexity of interactions in the associated biological processes and pathways. A recent genome-wide RNA knock-down study both identified and phenotypically characterized a set of important genes for the cell cycle in HeLa cells. Here, we combine a molecular interaction network analysis, based on physical and functional protein interactions, in conjunction with evolutionary information, to elucidate the common biological and topological properties of these key genes. Our results show that these genes tend to be conserved with their corresponding protein interactions across several species and are key constituents of the evolutionary conserved molecular interaction network. Moreover, a group of bistable network motifs is found to be conserved within this network, which are likely to influence the network stability and therefore the robustness of cellular functioning. They form a cluster, which displays functional homogeneity and is significantly enriched in genes phenotypically relevant for mitosis. Additional results reveal a relationship between specific cellular processes and the phenotypic outcomes induced by gene silencing. This study introduces new ideas regarding the relationship between genotype and phenotype in the context of the cell cycle. We show that the analysis of molecular interaction networks can result in the identification of genes relevant to cellular processes, which is a promising avenue for future research.

  3. Pareto Optimal Design for Synthetic Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patanè, Andrea; Santoro, Andrea; Costanza, Jole; Carapezza, Giovanni; Nicosia, Giuseppe

    2015-08-01

    Recent advances in synthetic biology call for robust, flexible and efficient in silico optimization methodologies. We present a Pareto design approach for the bi-level optimization problem associated to the overproduction of specific metabolites in Escherichia coli. Our method efficiently explores the high dimensional genetic manipulation space, finding a number of trade-offs between synthetic and biological objectives, hence furnishing a deeper biological insight to the addressed problem and important results for industrial purposes. We demonstrate the computational capabilities of our Pareto-oriented approach comparing it with state-of-the-art heuristics in the overproduction problems of i) 1,4-butanediol, ii) myristoyl-CoA, i ii) malonyl-CoA , iv) acetate and v) succinate. We show that our algorithms are able to gracefully adapt and scale to more complex models and more biologically-relevant simulations of the genetic manipulations allowed. The Results obtained for 1,4-butanediol overproduction significantly outperform results previously obtained, in terms of 1,4-butanediol to biomass formation ratio and knock-out costs. In particular overproduction percentage is of +662.7%, from 1.425 mmolh⁻¹gDW⁻¹ (wild type) to 10.869 mmolh⁻¹gDW⁻¹, with a knockout cost of 6. Whereas, Pareto-optimal designs we have found in fatty acid optimizations strictly dominate the ones obtained by the other methodologies, e.g., biomass and myristoyl-CoA exportation improvement of +21.43% (0.17 h⁻¹) and +5.19% (1.62 mmolh⁻¹gDW⁻¹), respectively. Furthermore CPU time required by our heuristic approach is more than halved. Finally we implement pathway oriented sensitivity analysis, epsilon-dominance analysis and robustness analysis to enhance our biological understanding of the problem and to improve the optimization algorithm capabilities.

  4. Dysregulated Pathway Identification of Alzheimer's Disease Based on Internal Correlation Analysis of Genes and Pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kong, Wei; Mou, Xiaoyang; Di, Benteng; Deng, Jin; Zhong, Ruxing; Wang, Shuaiqun

    2017-11-20

    Dysregulated pathway identification is an important task which can gain insight into the underlying biological processes of disease. Current pathway-identification methods focus on a set of co-expression genes and single pathways and ignore the correlation between genes and pathways. The method proposed in this study, takes into account the internal correlations not only between genes but also pathways to identifying dysregulated pathways related to Alzheimer's disease (AD), the most common form of dementia. In order to find the significantly differential genes for AD, mutual information (MI) is used to measure interdependencies between genes other than expression valves. Then, by integrating the topology information from KEGG, the significant pathways involved in the feature genes are identified. Next, the distance correlation (DC) is applied to measure the pairwise pathway crosstalks since DC has the advantage of detecting nonlinear correlations when compared to Pearson correlation. Finally, the pathway pairs with significantly different correlations between normal and AD samples are known as dysregulated pathways. The molecular biology analysis demonstrated that many dysregulated pathways related to AD pathogenesis have been discovered successfully by the internal correlation detection. Furthermore, the insights of the dysregulated pathways in the development and deterioration of AD will help to find new effective target genes and provide important theoretical guidance for drug design. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  5. Is nanotechnology the key to unravel and engineer biological processes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarro, Melba; Planell, Josep A

    2012-01-01

    Regenerative medicine is an emerging field aiming to the development of new reparative strategies to treat degenerative diseases, injury, and trauma through developmental pathways in order to rebuild the architecture of the original injured organ and take over its functionality. Most of the processes and interactions involved in the regenerative process take place at subcellular scale. Nanotechnology provides the tools and technology not only to detect, to measure, or to image the interactions between the different biomolecules and biological entities, but also to control and guide the regenerative process. The relevance of nanotechnology for the development of regenerative medicine as well as an overview of the different tools that contribute to unravel and engineer biological systems are presented in this chapter. In addition, general data about the social impact and global investment in nanotechnology are provided.

  6. Integrated Systems Approach Reveals Sphingolipid Metabolism Pathway Dysregulation in Association with Late-Onset Alzheimer’s Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John Stephen Malamon

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Late-onset Alzheimer’s disease (LOAD and age are significantly correlated such that one-third of Americans beyond 85 years of age are afflicted. We have designed and implemented a pilot study that combines systems biology approaches with traditional next-generation sequencing (NGS analysis techniques to identify relevant regulatory pathways, infer functional relationships and confirm the dysregulation of these biological pathways in LOAD. Our study design is a most comprehensive systems approach combining co-expression network modeling derived from RNA-seq data, rigorous quality control (QC standards, functional ontology, and expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL derived from whole exome (WES single nucleotide variant (SNV genotype data. Our initial results reveal several statistically significant, biologically relevant genes involved in sphingolipid metabolism. To validate these findings, we performed a gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA. The GSEA revealed the sphingolipid metabolism pathway and regulation of autophagy in association with LOAD cases. In the execution of this study, we have successfully tested an integrative approach to identify both novel and known LOAD drivers in order to develop a broader and more detailed picture of the highly complex transcriptional and regulatory landscape of age-related dementia.

  7. Biological computation

    CERN Document Server

    Lamm, Ehud

    2011-01-01

    Introduction and Biological BackgroundBiological ComputationThe Influence of Biology on Mathematics-Historical ExamplesBiological IntroductionModels and Simulations Cellular Automata Biological BackgroundThe Game of Life General Definition of Cellular Automata One-Dimensional AutomataExamples of Cellular AutomataComparison with a Continuous Mathematical Model Computational UniversalitySelf-Replication Pseudo Code Evolutionary ComputationEvolutionary Biology and Evolutionary ComputationGenetic AlgorithmsExample ApplicationsAnalysis of the Behavior of Genetic AlgorithmsLamarckian Evolution Genet

  8. An Integrative data mining approach to identifying Adverse Outcome Pathway (AOP) Signatures

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Adverse Outcome Pathway (AOP) framework is a tool for making biological connections and summarizing key information across different levels of biological organization to connect biological perturbations at the molecular level to adverse outcomes for an individual or populatio...

  9. Thermodynamic Analysis of Biodegradation Pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finley, Stacey D.; Broadbelt, Linda J.

    2014-01-01

    Microorganisms provide a wealth of biodegradative potential in the reduction and elimination of xenobiotic compounds in the environment. One useful metric to evaluate potential biodegradation pathways is thermodynamic feasibility. However, experimental data for the thermodynamic properties of xenobiotics is scarce. The present work uses a group contribution method to study the thermodynamic properties of the University of Minnesota Biocatalysis/Biodegradation Database. The Gibbs free energies of formation and reaction are estimated for 914 compounds (81%) and 902 reactions (75%), respectively, in the database. The reactions are classified based on the minimum and maximum Gibbs free energy values, which accounts for uncertainty in the free energy estimates and a feasible concentration range relevant to biodegradation. Using the free energy estimates, the cumulative free energy change of 89 biodegradation pathways (51%) in the database could be estimated. A comparison of the likelihood of the biotransformation rules in the Pathway Prediction System and their thermodynamic feasibility was then carried out. This analysis revealed that when evaluating the feasibility of biodegradation pathways, it is important to consider the thermodynamic topology of the reactions in the context of the complete pathway. Group contribution is shown to be a viable tool for estimating, a priori, the thermodynamic feasibility and the relative likelihood of alternative biodegradation reactions. This work offers a useful tool to a broad range of researchers interested in estimating the feasibility of the reactions in existing or novel biodegradation pathways. PMID:19288443

  10. Biological process linkage networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dikla Dotan-Cohen

    Full Text Available The traditional approach to studying complex biological networks is based on the identification of interactions between internal components of signaling or metabolic pathways. By comparison, little is known about interactions between higher order biological systems, such as biological pathways and processes. We propose a methodology for gleaning patterns of interactions between biological processes by analyzing protein-protein interactions, transcriptional co-expression and genetic interactions. At the heart of the methodology are the concept of Linked Processes and the resultant network of biological processes, the Process Linkage Network (PLN.We construct, catalogue, and analyze different types of PLNs derived from different data sources and different species. When applied to the Gene Ontology, many of the resulting links connect processes that are distant from each other in the hierarchy, even though the connection makes eminent sense biologically. Some others, however, carry an element of surprise and may reflect mechanisms that are unique to the organism under investigation. In this aspect our method complements the link structure between processes inherent in the Gene Ontology, which by its very nature is species-independent. As a practical application of the linkage of processes we demonstrate that it can be effectively used in protein function prediction, having the power to increase both the coverage and the accuracy of predictions, when carefully integrated into prediction methods.Our approach constitutes a promising new direction towards understanding the higher levels of organization of the cell as a system which should help current efforts to re-engineer ontologies and improve our ability to predict which proteins are involved in specific biological processes.

  11. Do two machine-learning based prognostic signatures for breast cancer capture the same biological processes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drier, Yotam; Domany, Eytan

    2011-03-14

    The fact that there is very little if any overlap between the genes of different prognostic signatures for early-discovery breast cancer is well documented. The reasons for this apparent discrepancy have been explained by the limits of simple machine-learning identification and ranking techniques, and the biological relevance and meaning of the prognostic gene lists was questioned. Subsequently, proponents of the prognostic gene lists claimed that different lists do capture similar underlying biological processes and pathways. The present study places under scrutiny the validity of this claim, for two important gene lists that are at the focus of current large-scale validation efforts. We performed careful enrichment analysis, controlling the effects of multiple testing in a manner which takes into account the nested dependent structure of gene ontologies. In contradiction to several previous publications, we find that the only biological process or pathway for which statistically significant concordance can be claimed is cell proliferation, a process whose relevance and prognostic value was well known long before gene expression profiling. We found that the claims reported by others, of wider concordance between the biological processes captured by the two prognostic signatures studied, were found either to be lacking statistical rigor or were in fact based on addressing some other question.

  12. Do two machine-learning based prognostic signatures for breast cancer capture the same biological processes?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yotam Drier

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available The fact that there is very little if any overlap between the genes of different prognostic signatures for early-discovery breast cancer is well documented. The reasons for this apparent discrepancy have been explained by the limits of simple machine-learning identification and ranking techniques, and the biological relevance and meaning of the prognostic gene lists was questioned. Subsequently, proponents of the prognostic gene lists claimed that different lists do capture similar underlying biological processes and pathways. The present study places under scrutiny the validity of this claim, for two important gene lists that are at the focus of current large-scale validation efforts. We performed careful enrichment analysis, controlling the effects of multiple testing in a manner which takes into account the nested dependent structure of gene ontologies. In contradiction to several previous publications, we find that the only biological process or pathway for which statistically significant concordance can be claimed is cell proliferation, a process whose relevance and prognostic value was well known long before gene expression profiling. We found that the claims reported by others, of wider concordance between the biological processes captured by the two prognostic signatures studied, were found either to be lacking statistical rigor or were in fact based on addressing some other question.

  13. DISC1 pathway in brain development: exploring therapeutic targets for major psychiatric disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atsushi eKamiya

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Genetic risk factors for major psychiatric disorders play key roles in neurodevelopment. Thus, exploring the molecular pathways of risk genes is important not only for understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying brain development, but also to decipher how genetic disturbances affect brain maturation and functioning relevant to major mental illnesses. During the last decade, there has been significant progress in determining the mechanisms whereby risk genes impact brain development. Nonetheless, given that the majority of psychiatric disorders have etiological complexities encompassing multiple risk genes and environmental factors, the biological mechanisms of these diseases remain poorly understood. How can we move forward in our research for discovery of the biological markers and novel therapeutic targets for major mental disorders? Here we review recent progress in the neurobiology of Disrupted in schizophrenia 1 (DISC1, a major risk gene for major mental disorders, with a particular focus on its roles in cerebral cortex development. Convergent findings implicate DISC1 as part of a large, multi-step pathway implicated in various cellular processes and signal transduction. We discuss links between the DISC1 pathway and environmental factors, such as immune/inflammatory responses, which may suggest novel therapeutic targets. Existing treatments for major mental disorders are hampered by a limited number of pharmacological targets. Consequently, elucidation of the DISC1 pathway, and its association with neuropsychiatric disorders, may offer hope for novel treatment interventions.

  14. Pathways for Metastable Carbonate Synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whittaker, Michael L.

    Carbonate minerals are integral to life on earth, as reservoirs for CO 2 in the earth's natural carbon cycle and as the skeletal elements of abundant organisms like corals and plankton. Because of its relevance, availability, and low toxicity, calcium carbonate is also an important model system for phase transformations in aqueous solutions. However, it often does not conform to classical theories of nucleation, prompting a critical reevaluation of both the pathways of carbonate mineralization and the theories that describe them. Most importantly, it has been shown that amorphous calcium carbonate (ACC) is frequently a precursor to crystalline calcium carbonate during precipitation, in both biological and inorganic systems. Amorphous precursors influence phase transformations in several ways, including decoupling densification of ions in solution from their arrangement on a crystalline lattice, altering solution thermodynamics, creating new interfaces, and changing kinetic barriers. To exert control over these processes in vivo, organisms generally confine precipitation reactions to small volumes, often within lipid membrane vesicles. Herein, I describe in vitro model systems designed to elucidate and replicate biological mineralization pathways. Giant unilamellar vesicles are shown to slow the rate of crystallization of ACC by excluding nucleation accelerants, and by preserving the high kinetic barriers to lower energy phases that result. Phosphatidylcholine, one of the most abundant natural lipids, does not interact strongly with ACC, but the interfacial chemistry canbe tuned by changing the lipid charge or reducing steric shielding. Microfluidically produced water-in-oil emulsions were used as liposome analogs to study crystallization kinetics. In ensembles of hundreds of emulsion drops, we show that vaterite forms from ACC via a classical, two-step nucleation process. We also extend the classical theory of nucleation to highly confined aqueous systems, where

  15. Synthetic biology and metabolic engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephanopoulos, Gregory

    2012-11-16

    Metabolic engineering emerged 20 years ago as the discipline occupied with the directed modification of metabolic pathways for the microbial synthesis of various products. As such, it deals with the engineering (design, construction, and optimization) of native as well as non-natural routes of product synthesis, aided in this task by the availability of synthetic DNA, the core enabling technology of synthetic biology. The two fields, however, only partially overlap in their interest in pathway engineering. While fabrication of biobricks, synthetic cells, genetic circuits, and nonlinear cell dynamics, along with pathway engineering, have occupied researchers in the field of synthetic biology, the sum total of these areas does not constitute a coherent definition of synthetic biology with a distinct intellectual foundation and well-defined areas of application. This paper reviews the origins of the two fields and advances two distinct paradigms for each of them: that of unit operations for metabolic engineering and electronic circuits for synthetic biology. In this context, metabolic engineering is about engineering cell factories for the biological manufacturing of chemical and pharmaceutical products, whereas the main focus of synthetic biology is fundamental biological research facilitated by the use of synthetic DNA and genetic circuits.