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Sample records for core promoting melanin

  1. The repeat domain of the melanosome fibril protein Pmel17 forms the amyloid core promoting melanin synthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGlinchey, Ryan P; Shewmaker, Frank; McPhie, Peter; Monterroso, Begoña; Thurber, Kent; Wickner, Reed B

    2009-08-18

    Pmel17 is a melanocyte protein necessary for eumelanin deposition 1 in mammals and found in melanosomes in a filamentous form. The luminal part of human Pmel17 includes a region (RPT) with 10 copies of a partial repeat sequence, pt.e.gttp.qv., known to be essential in vivo for filament formation. We show that this RPT region readily forms amyloid in vitro, but only under the mildly acidic conditions typical of the lysosome-like melanosome lumen, and the filaments quickly become soluble at neutral pH. Under the same mildly acidic conditions, the Pmel filaments promote eumelanin formation. Electron diffraction, circular dichroism, and solid-state NMR studies of Pmel17 filaments show that the structure is rich in beta sheet. We suggest that RPT is the amyloid core domain of the Pmel17 filaments so critical for melanin formation.

  2. Bacterial melanin promotes recovery after sciatic nerve injury in rats

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Olga V Gevorkyan; Irina B Meliksetyan; Tigran R Petrosyan; Anichka S Hovsepyan

    2015-01-01

    Bacterial melanin, obtained from the mutant strain ofBacillus Thuringiensis, has been shown to promote recovery after central nervous system injury. It is hypothesized, in this study, that bacterial melanin can promote structural and functional recovery after peripheral nerve injury. Rats subjected to sciatic nerve transection were intramuscularly administered bacterial melanin. The sciatic nerve transected rats that did not receive intramuscular administration of bacterial melanin served as controls. Behavior tests showed that compared to control rats, the time taken for instrumental conditioned relfex recovery was signiifcantly shorter and the ability to keep the balance on the rotating bar was signiifcantly better in bacterial melanin-treated rats. Histomor-phological tests showed that bacterial melanin promoted axon regeneration after sciatic nerve injury. These ifndings suggest that bacterial melanin exhibits neuroprotective effects on injured sciatic nerve, contributes to limb motor function recovery, and therefore can be used for rehabil-itation treatment of peripheral nerve injury.

  3. Keratinocyte-derived laminin-332 protein promotes melanin synthesis via regulation of tyrosine uptake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chung, Heesung; Jung, Hyejung; Lee, Jung-Hyun; Oh, Hye Yun; Kim, Ok Bin; Han, Inn-Oc; Oh, Eok-Soo

    2014-08-01

    Melanocytes, which produce the pigment melanin, are known to be closely regulated by neighboring keratinocytes. However, how keratinocytes regulate melanin production is unclear. Here we report that melanin production in melanoma cells (B16F10 and MNT-1) was increased markedly on a keratinocyte-derived extracellular matrix compared with a melanoma cell-derived extracellular matrix. siRNA-mediated reduction of keratinocyte-derived laminin-332 expression decreased melanin synthesis in melanoma cells, and laminin-332, but not fibronectin, enhanced melanin content and α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone-regulated melanin production in melanoma cells. Similar effects were observed in human melanocytes. Interestingly, however, laminin-332 did not affect the expression or activity of tyrosinase. Instead, laminin-332 promoted the uptake of extracellular tyrosine and, subsequently, increased intracellular levels of tyrosine in both melanocytes and melanoma cells. Taken together, these data strongly suggest that keratinocyte-derived laminin-332 contributes to melanin production by regulating tyrosine uptake.

  4. Aspergillus Cell Wall Melanin Blocks LC3-Associated Phagocytosis to Promote Pathogenicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akoumianaki, Tonia; Kyrmizi, Irene; Valsecchi, Isabel; Gresnigt, Mark S; Samonis, George; Drakos, Elias; Boumpas, Dimitrios; Muszkieta, Laetitia; Prevost, Marie-Christine; Kontoyiannis, Dimitrios P; Chavakis, Triantafyllos; Netea, Mihai G; van de Veerdonk, Frank L; Brakhage, Axel A; El-Benna, Jamel; Beauvais, Anne; Latge, Jean-Paul; Chamilos, Georgios

    2016-01-13

    Concealing pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) is a principal strategy used by fungi to avoid immune recognition. Surface exposure of PAMPs during germination can leave the pathogen vulnerable. Accordingly, β-glucan surface exposure during Aspergillus fumigatus germination activates an Atg5-dependent autophagy pathway termed LC3-associated phagocytosis (LAP), which promotes fungal killing. We found that LAP activation also requires the genetic, biochemical or biological (germination) removal of A. fumigatus cell wall melanin. The attenuated virulence of melanin-deficient A. fumigatus is restored in Atg5-deficient macrophages and in mice upon conditional inactivation of Atg5 in hematopoietic cells. Mechanistically, Aspergillus melanin inhibits NADPH oxidase-dependent activation of LAP by excluding the p22phox subunit from the phagosome. Thus, two events that occur concomitantly during germination of airborne fungi, surface exposure of PAMPs and melanin removal, are necessary for LAP activation and fungal killing. LAP blockade is a general property of melanin pigments, a finding with broad physiological implications.

  5. Functional Screening of Core Promoter Activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Even, Dan Y; Kedmi, Adi; Ideses, Diana; Juven-Gershon, Tamar

    2017-01-01

    The core promoter is the DNA sequence that recruits the basal transcription machinery and directs accurate initiation of transcription. It is an active contributor to gene expression that can be rationally designed to manipulate the levels of expression. Core promoter function can be analyzed using different experimental approaches. Here, we describe the qualitative and quantitative analysis of engineered core promoter functions using the EGFP reporter gene that is driven by distinct core promoters. Expression plasmids are transfected into different mammalian cell lines, and the resulting fluorescence is monitored by live cell imaging , as well as by flow cytometry. In order to verify that the transcriptional activity of the examined core promoters is indeed a function of their activity, as opposed to differences in DNA uptake, real-time quantitative PCR analysis is performed. Importantly, the described methodology for functional screening of core promoter activity has enabled the analysis of engineered potent core promoters for extended time periods.

  6. The punctilious RNA polymerase II core promoter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vo Ngoc, Long; Wang, Yuan-Liang; Kassavetis, George A; Kadonaga, James T

    2017-07-01

    The signals that direct the initiation of transcription ultimately converge at the core promoter, which is the gateway to transcription. Here we provide an overview of the RNA polymerase II core promoter in bilateria (bilaterally symmetric animals). The core promoter is diverse in terms of its composition and function yet is also punctilious, as it acts with strict rules and precision. We additionally describe an expanded view of the core promoter that comprises the classical DNA sequence motifs, sequence-specific DNA-binding transcription factors, chromatin signals, and DNA structure. This model may eventually lead to a more unified conceptual understanding of the core promoter. © 2017 Vo ngoc et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

  7. Physical factors affecting chloroquine binding to melanin.

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    Schroeder, R L; Pendleton, P; Gerber, J P

    2015-10-01

    Chloroquine is an antimalarial drug but is also prescribed for conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis. Long-term users risk toxic side effects, including retinopathy, thought to be caused by chloroquine accumulation on ocular melanin. Although the binding potential of chloroquine to melanin has been investigated previously, our study is the first to demonstrate clear links between chloroquine adsorption by melanin and system factors including temperature, pH, melanin type, and particle size. In the current work, two Sepia melanins were compared with bovine eye as a representative mammalian melanin. Increasing the surface anionic character due to a pH change from 4.7 to 7.4 increased each melanin's affinity for chloroquine. Although the chloroquine isotherms exhibited an apparently strong interaction with each melanin, isosteric heat analysis indicated a competitive interaction. Buffer solution cations competed effectively at low surface coverage; chloroquine adsorption occurs via buffer cation displacement and is promoted by temperature-influenced secondary structure swelling.

  8. Exome-based Variant Detection in Core Promoters.

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    Kim, Yeong C; Cui, Jian; Luo, Jiangtao; Xiao, Fengxia; Downs, Bradley; Wang, San Ming

    2016-07-28

    Core promoter controls the initiation of transcription. Core promoter sequence change can disrupt transcriptional regulation, lead to impairment of gene expression and ultimately diseases. Therefore, comprehensive characterization of core promoters is essential to understand normal and abnormal gene expression in biomedical studies. Here we report the development of EVDC (Exome-based Variant Detection in Core promoters) method for genome-scale analysis of core-promoter sequence variation. This method is based on the fact that exome sequences contain the sequences not only from coding exons but also from non-coding region including core promoters generated by random fragmentation in exome sequencing process. Using exome data from three cell types of CD4+ T cells, CD19+ B cells and neutrophils of a single individual, we characterized the features of core promoter-mapped exome sequences, and analysed core-promoter variation in this individual genome. We also compared the core promoters between YRI (Yoruba in Ibadan, Nigeria) and the CEU (Utah residents of European decedent) populations using the exome data generated by the 1000 Genome project, and observed much higher variation in YRI population than in CEU population. Our study demonstrates that the EVDC method provides a simple but powerful means for genome-wile de novo characterization of core promoter sequence variation.

  9. The core promoter: At the heart of gene expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danino, Yehuda M; Even, Dan; Ideses, Diana; Juven-Gershon, Tamar

    2015-08-01

    The identities of different cells and tissues in multicellular organisms are determined by tightly controlled transcriptional programs that enable accurate gene expression. The mechanisms that regulate gene expression comprise diverse multiplayer molecular circuits of multiple dedicated components. The RNA polymerase II (Pol II) core promoter establishes the center of this spatiotemporally orchestrated molecular machine. Here, we discuss transcription initiation, diversity in core promoter composition, interactions of the basal transcription machinery with the core promoter, enhancer-promoter specificity, core promoter-preferential activation, enhancer RNAs, Pol II pausing, transcription termination, Pol II recycling and translation. We further discuss recent findings indicating that promoters and enhancers share similar features and may not substantially differ from each other, as previously assumed. Taken together, we review a broad spectrum of studies that highlight the importance of the core promoter and its pivotal role in the regulation of metazoan gene expression and suggest future research directions and challenges.

  10. The features of Drosophila core promoters revealed by statistical analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trifonov Edward N

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Experimental investigation of transcription is still a very labor- and time-consuming process. Only a few transcription initiation scenarios have been studied in detail. The mechanism of interaction between basal machinery and promoter, in particular core promoter elements, is not known for the majority of identified promoters. In this study, we reveal various transcription initiation mechanisms by statistical analysis of 3393 nonredundant Drosophila promoters. Results Using Drosophila-specific position-weight matrices, we identified promoters containing TATA box, Initiator, Downstream Promoter Element (DPE, and Motif Ten Element (MTE, as well as core elements discovered in Human (TFIIB Recognition Element (BRE and Downstream Core Element (DCE. Promoters utilizing known synergetic combinations of two core elements (TATA_Inr, Inr_MTE, Inr_DPE, and DPE_MTE were identified. We also establish the existence of promoters with potentially novel synergetic combinations: TATA_DPE and TATA_MTE. Our analysis revealed several motifs with the features of promoter elements, including possible novel core promoter element(s. Comparison of Human and Drosophila showed consistent percentages of promoters with TATA, Inr, DPE, and synergetic combinations thereof, as well as most of the same functional and mutual positions of the core elements. No statistical evidence of MTE utilization in Human was found. Distinct nucleosome positioning in particular promoter classes was revealed. Conclusion We present lists of promoters that potentially utilize the aforementioned elements/combinations. The number of these promoters is two orders of magnitude larger than the number of promoters in which transcription initiation was experimentally studied. The sequences are ready to be experimentally tested or used for further statistical analysis. The developed approach may be utilized for other species.

  11. Research of extraction technology of the melanin from core-shell of wild apricots using response surface analysis%响应面法对山杏核壳黑色素提取工艺的研究

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李军; 张乔会; 蓝晶晶; 王建中

    2012-01-01

    With less utilization, core-shell of wild apricot was the scarps of production. On the basis of single factor experiments,the optimum conditions for the extraction of the melanin from core-shell of wild apricot were obtained through Box-Benhnken center-united experiment design and response surface methodology.The results showed that the optimum conditions of extraction of the melanin from core-shell of wild apricot were as follows: liquid ratio 1:20, temperature 60℃,alkali concentration tmol/L,time 4h.Under this condition,the maximal yield of melanin was up to 8.33%.%山杏核壳是生产中的下脚料,开发利用较少。以山杏核壳为原料提取黑色素,通过响应面法优化工艺条件。在单因素实验基础上选取实验因素与水平,根据Box—Benhnken中心组合实验设计原理采用四因素三水平的响应面分析法。得到最佳提取工艺为:料液比1:20,温度60℃,碱液浓度1mol/L,时间4h;在此条件下,提取得率可达8.33%。

  12. Melanin-binding radiopharmaceuticals

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Packer, S; Fairchild, R G; Watts, K P; Greenberg, D; Hannon, S J

    1980-01-01

    The scope of this paper is limited to an analysis of the factors that are important to the relationship of radiopharmaceuticals to melanin. While the authors do not attempt to deal with differences between melanin-binding vs. melanoma-binding, a notable variance is assumed. (PSB)

  13. Dynamic usage of transcription start sites within core promoters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kawaji, Hideya; Frith, Martin C; Katayama, Shintaro

    2006-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Mammalian promoters do not initiate transcription at single, well defined base pairs, but rather at multiple, alternative start sites spread across a region. We previously characterized the static structures of transcription start site usage within promoters at the base pair level......, based on large-scale sequencing of transcript 5' ends. RESULTS: In the present study we begin to explore the internal dynamics of mammalian promoters, and demonstrate that start site selection within many mouse core promoters varies among tissues. We also show that this dynamic usage of start sites...

  14. Antiradiation properties of melanin

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    Bushmanov A.Ju.

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Aim: to examine the therapeutic efficiency of melanin administered to mice after irradiation at lethal and sublethal doses. Material and methods: Survival and hematological states were studied on CD-1 mice receiving on acute or fractionated whole-body doses on X-rays or gamma-irradiation. Melanin soluble was given with water ad libitum from the first to the 30th-day after irradiation. Results. It was shown that melanin produced a significant therapeutic and protective-therapeutic action against acute radiation injury in the dose range 6,5-7,5 Gy (LD80-LD under our conditions. Cumulative survival melanin treated mice was increased to 14,4%, in control group — 1,9%. After fractionated injury (1 Gy daily, total dose 10 Gy all mice which consumed melanin remained alive, versus 43,7% in control. Melanin decreased radiation-induced damage and stimulated the hematopoiesis recovery after sublethal exposure (5Gy. Conclusion. The results permit to regard melanin as a therapeutic agent for treatment of radiation injuries.

  15. Classification of Promoters Based on the Combination of Core Promoter Elements Exhibits Different Histone Modification Patterns

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    Natsume-Kitatani, Yayoi; Mamitsuka, Hiroshi

    2016-01-01

    Four different histones (H2A, H2B, H3, and H4; two subunits each) constitute a histone octamer, around which DNA wraps to form histone-DNA complexes called nucleosomes. Amino acid residues in each histone are occasionally modified, resulting in several biological effects, including differential regulation of transcription. Core promoters that encompass the transcription start site have well-conserved DNA motifs, including the initiator (Inr), TATA box, and DPE, which are collectively called the core promoter elements (CPEs). In this study, we systematically studied the associations between the CPEs and histone modifications by integrating the Drosophila Core Promoter Database and time-series ChIP-seq data for histone modifications (H3K4me3, H3K27ac, and H3K27me3) during development in Drosophila melanogaster via the modENCODE project. We classified 96 core promoters into four groups based on the presence or absence of the TATA box or DPE, calculated the histone modification ratio at the core promoter region, and transcribed region for each core promoter. We found that the histone modifications in TATA-less groups were static during development and that the core promoters could be clearly divided into three types: i) core promoters with continuous active marks (H3K4me3 and H3K27ac), ii) core promoters with a continuous inactive mark (H3K27me3) and occasional active marks, and iii) core promoters with occasional histone modifications. Linear regression analysis and non-linear regression by random forest showed that the TATA-containing groups included core promoters without histone modifications, for which the measured RNA expression values were not predictable accurately from the histone modification status. DPE-containing groups had a higher relative frequency of H3K27me3 in both the core promoter region and transcribed region. In summary, our analysis showed that there was a systematic link between the existence of the CPEs and the dynamics, frequency and influence

  16. Classification of Promoters Based on the Combination of Core Promoter Elements Exhibits Different Histone Modification Patterns.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yayoi Natsume-Kitatani

    Full Text Available Four different histones (H2A, H2B, H3, and H4; two subunits each constitute a histone octamer, around which DNA wraps to form histone-DNA complexes called nucleosomes. Amino acid residues in each histone are occasionally modified, resulting in several biological effects, including differential regulation of transcription. Core promoters that encompass the transcription start site have well-conserved DNA motifs, including the initiator (Inr, TATA box, and DPE, which are collectively called the core promoter elements (CPEs. In this study, we systematically studied the associations between the CPEs and histone modifications by integrating the Drosophila Core Promoter Database and time-series ChIP-seq data for histone modifications (H3K4me3, H3K27ac, and H3K27me3 during development in Drosophila melanogaster via the modENCODE project. We classified 96 core promoters into four groups based on the presence or absence of the TATA box or DPE, calculated the histone modification ratio at the core promoter region, and transcribed region for each core promoter. We found that the histone modifications in TATA-less groups were static during development and that the core promoters could be clearly divided into three types: i core promoters with continuous active marks (H3K4me3 and H3K27ac, ii core promoters with a continuous inactive mark (H3K27me3 and occasional active marks, and iii core promoters with occasional histone modifications. Linear regression analysis and non-linear regression by random forest showed that the TATA-containing groups included core promoters without histone modifications, for which the measured RNA expression values were not predictable accurately from the histone modification status. DPE-containing groups had a higher relative frequency of H3K27me3 in both the core promoter region and transcribed region. In summary, our analysis showed that there was a systematic link between the existence of the CPEs and the dynamics, frequency

  17. Characterization of nonconventional hepatitis B viruses lacking the core promoter.

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    Chang, Shau-Feng; Chang, Shih-Hsuan; Li, Bi-Chen; Will, Hans; Netter, Hans Jürgen

    2004-12-20

    The core gene (C-gene) promoter and regulatory sequences play a central role in the hepatitis B virus (HBV) life cycle. They are essential for the synthesis of the pregenomic and precore mRNA. The pregenomic RNA is the template required for replication and also the template for the synthesis of the core protein and polymerase. Here, we report the in vivo existence and functional characterization of HBV variants that lack the C-gene promoter region and the regulatory sequences located therein. HBV promoter fragments were isolated by PCR from sera of chronic carriers and characterized. Truncated promoter elements were identified, and then tested in the context of wild-type genomes in the HuH-7 cell line. The expression of the recombinant HBV genome resulted in the synthesis of surface proteins, and low level of core protein as well as a transcript pattern similar to, but smaller in size to wild-type virus. The recombinant HBV genome with the truncated promoter region produced pregenomic RNA-like transcripts. These transcripts were encapsidated and reverse transcribed when complemented by sufficient core and polymerase protein. These date provide an explanation as to why such deletion mutants of HBV can be produced at all, they highlight the functional potentials of viral sequences activated by mutations and may be of relevance for viral evolution and persistence.

  18. Core promoter recognition complex changes accompany liver development

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    D’Alessio, Joseph A.; Ng, Raymond; Willenbring, Holger; Tjian, Robert

    2011-01-01

    Recent studies of several key developmental transitions have brought into question the long held view of the basal transcriptional apparatus as ubiquitous and invariant. In an effort to better understand the role of core promoter recognition and coactivator complex switching in cellular differentiation, we have examined changes in transcription factor IID (TFIID) and cofactor required for Sp1 activation/Mediator during mouse liver development. Here we show that the differentiation of fetal liver progenitors to adult hepatocytes involves a wholesale depletion of canonical cofactor required for Sp1 activation/Mediator and TFIID complexes at both the RNA and protein level, and that this alteration likely involves silencing of transcription factor promoters as well as protein degradation. It will be intriguing for future studies to determine if a novel and as yet unknown core promoter recognition complex takes the place of TFIID in adult hepatocytes and to uncover the mechanisms that down-regulate TFIID during this critical developmental transition. PMID:21368148

  19. Core promoter acetylation is not required for high transcription from the phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase promoter in maize

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    Horst Ina

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Acetylation of promoter nucleosomes is tightly correlated and mechanistically linked to gene activity. However, transcription is not necessary for promoter acetylation. It seems, therefore, that external and endogenous stimuli control histone acetylation and by this contribute to gene regulation. Photosynthetic genes in plants are excellent models with which to study the connection between stimuli and chromatin modifications because these genes are strongly expressed and regulated by multiple stimuli that are easily manipulated. We have previously shown that acetylation of specific histone lysine residues on the photosynthetic phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase (Pepc promoter in maize is controlled by light and is independent of other stimuli or gene activity. Acetylation of upstream promoter regions responds to a set of other stimuli which include the nutrient availability of the plant. Here, we have extended these studies by analysing histone acetylation during the diurnal and circadian rhythm of the plant. Results We show that histone acetylation of individual lysine residues is removed from the core promoter before the end of the illumination period which is an indication that light is not the only factor influencing core promoter acetylation. Deacetylation is accompanied by a decrease in gene activity. Pharmacological inhibition of histone deacetylation is not sufficient to prevent transcriptional repression, indicating that deacetylation is not controlling diurnal gene regulation. Variation of the Pepc promoter activity during the day is controlled by the circadian oscillator as it is maintained under constant illumination for at least 3 days. During this period, light-induced changes in histone acetylation are completely removed from the core promoter, although the light stimulus is continuously applied. However, acetylation of most sites on upstream promoter elements follows the circadian rhythm. Conclusion Our results

  20. Nuclear factor Y regulates ancient budgerigar hepadnavirus core promoter activity.

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    Shen, Zhongliang; Liu, Yanfeng; Luo, Mengjun; Wang, Wei; Liu, Jing; Liu, Wei; Pan, Shaokun; Xie, Youhua

    2016-09-16

    Endogenous viral elements (EVE) in animal genomes are the fossil records of ancient viruses and provide invaluable information on the origin and evolution of extant viruses. Extant hepadnaviruses include avihepadnaviruses of birds and orthohepadnaviruses of mammals. The core promoter (Cp) of hepadnaviruses is vital for viral gene expression and replication. We previously identified in the budgerigar genome two EVEs that contain the full-length genome of an ancient budgerigar hepadnavirus (eBHBV1 and eBHBV2). Here, we found eBHBV1 Cp and eBHBV2 Cp were active in several human and chicken cell lines. A region from nt -85 to -11 in eBHBV1 Cp was critical for the promoter activity. Bioinformatic analysis revealed a putative binding site of nuclear factor Y (NF-Y), a ubiquitous transcription factor, at nt -64 to -50 in eBHBV1 Cp. The NF-Y core binding site (ATTGG, nt -58 to -54) was essential for eBHBV1 Cp activity. The same results were obtained with eBHBV2 Cp and duck hepatitis B virus Cp. The subunit A of NF-Y (NF-YA) was recruited via the NF-Y core binding site to eBHBV1 Cp and upregulated the promoter activity. Finally, the NF-Y core binding site is conserved in the Cps of all the extant avihepadnaviruses but not of orthohepadnaviruses. Interestingly, a putative and functionally important NF-Y core binding site is located at nt -21 to -17 in the Cp of human hepatitis B virus. In conclusion, our findings have pinpointed an evolutionary conserved and functionally critical NF-Y binding element in the Cps of avihepadnaviruses.

  1. Core promoter recognition complex changes accompany liver development

    OpenAIRE

    D’Alessio, Joseph A.; Ng, Raymond; Willenbring, Holger; Tjian, Robert

    2011-01-01

    Recent studies of several key developmental transitions have brought into question the long held view of the basal transcriptional apparatus as ubiquitous and invariant. In an effort to better understand the role of core promoter recognition and coactivator complex switching in cellular differentiation, we have examined changes in transcription factor IID (TFIID) and cofactor required for Sp1 activation/Mediator during mouse liver development. Here we show that the differentiation of fetal li...

  2. Role of Melanin in Oncogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-08-01

    knockdown of individual enzymes that are specifically involved in melanin biosynthesis phenylalanine hydroxylase , tyrosinase, tyrosine hydroxylase and...with siRNAs directed against melanin biosynthetic enzymes, tyrosinase (siTYR), tyrosine hydroxylase (TYH), phenlyalanine hydroxylase (siPKU), and

  3. Genome-wide analysis of core promoter elements from conserved human and mouse orthologous pairs

    OpenAIRE

    Jin, Victor X.; Singer, Gregory AC; Agosto-Pérez, Francisco J; Liyanarachchi, Sandya; Davuluri, Ramana V.

    2006-01-01

    Background The canonical core promoter elements consist of the TATA box, initiator (Inr), downstream core promoter element (DPE), TFIIB recognition element (BRE) and the newly-discovered motif 10 element (MTE). The motifs for these core promoter elements are highly degenerate, which tends to lead to a high false discovery rate when attempting to detect them in promoter sequences. Results In this study, we have performed the first analysis of these core promoter elements in orthologous mouse a...

  4. Mammalian RNA polymerase II core promoters: insights from genome-wide studies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sandelin, Albin; Carninci, Piero; Lenhard, Boris

    2007-01-01

    The identification and characterization of mammalian core promoters and transcription start sites is a prerequisite to understanding how RNA polymerase II transcription is controlled. New experimental technologies have enabled genome-wide discovery and characterization of core promoters, revealin...

  5. Engineering of core promoter regions enables the construction of constitutive and inducible promoters in Halomonas sp.

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    Li, Tingting; Li, Teng; Ji, Weiyue; Wang, Qiuyue; Zhang, Haoqian; Chen, Guo-Qiang; Lou, Chunbo; Ouyang, Qi

    2016-02-01

    Halomonas strain TD01, a newly identified halophilic bacterium, has proven to be a promising low-cost host for the production of chemicals. However, genetic manipulation in Halomonas sp. is still difficult due to the lack of well-characterized and tunable expression systems. In this study, a systematic, efficient method was exploited to construct both a constitutive promoter library and inducible promoters. Porin, a highly expressed protein in Halomonas TD01, was first identified from the Halomonas TD01 proteome. Subsequent study of the intergenic region upstream of porin led to the identification of a core promoter region, including -10 and -35 elements. By randomizing the sequence between the -35 and -10 elements, a constitutive promoter library was obtained with 310-fold variation in transcriptional activity; an inducible promoter with a >200-fold induction was built by integrating a lac operator into the core promoter region. As two complementary expression systems, the constitutive and inducible promoters were then employed to regulate the biosynthetic pathway of poly-3-hydroxybutyrate (PHB) in Halomonas TD01, demonstrating the usefulness of the expression systems, furthermore, they could be applied in future metabolic engineering of Halomonas TD strains, and the systematic method used in this study can be generalized to other less-characterized bacterial strains.

  6. Paraquat-Melanin Redox-Cycling: Evidence from Electrochemical Reverse Engineering.

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    Kim, Eunkyoung; Leverage, W Taylor; Liu, Yi; Panzella, Lucia; Alfieri, Maria Laura; Napolitano, Alessandra; Bentley, William E; Payne, Gregory F

    2016-08-17

    Parkinson's disease is a neurodegenerative disorder associated with oxidative stress and the death of melanin-containing neurons of the substantia nigra. Epidemiological evidence links exposure to the pesticide paraquat (PQ) to Parkinson's disease, and this link has been explained by a redox cycling mechanism that induces oxidative stress. Here, we used a novel electrochemistry-based reverse engineering methodology to test the hypothesis that PQ can undergo reductive redox cycling with melanin. In this method, (i) an insoluble natural melanin (from Sepia melanin) and a synthetic model melanin (having a cysteinyldopamine-melanin core and dopamine-melanin shell) were entrapped in a nonconducting hydrogel film adjacent to an electrode, (ii) the film-coated electrode was immersed in solutions containing PQ (putative redox cycling reductant) and a redox cycling oxidant (ferrocene dimethanol), (iii) sequences of input potentials (i.e., voltages) were imposed to the underlying electrode to systematically engage reductive and oxidative redox cycling, and (iv) output response currents were analyzed for signatures of redox cycling. The response characteristics of the PQ-melanin systems to various input potential sequences support the hypothesis that PQ can directly donate electrons to melanin. This observation of PQ-melanin redox interactions demonstrates an association between two components that have been individually linked to oxidative stress and Parkinson's disease. Potentially, melanin's redox activity could be an important component in understanding the etiology of neurological disorders such as Parkinson's disease.

  7. HDAC Activity Is Required for Efficient Core Promoter Function at the Mouse Mammary Tumor Virus Promoter

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    Sang C. Lee

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Histone deacetylases (HDACs have been shown to be required for basal or inducible transcription at a variety of genes by poorly understood mechanisms. We demonstrated previously that HDAC inhibition rapidly repressed transcription from the mouse mammary tumor virus (MMTV promoter by a mechanism that does not require the binding of upstream transcription factors. In the current study, we find that HDACs work through the core promoter sequences of MMTV as well as those of several cellular genes to facilitate transcriptional initiation through deacetylation of nonhistone proteins.

  8. Regulatory Enhancer-Core-Promoter Communication via Transcription Factors and Cofactors.

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    Zabidi, Muhammad A; Stark, Alexander

    2016-12-01

    Gene expression is regulated by genomic enhancers that recruit transcription factors and cofactors to activate transcription from target core promoters. Over the past years, thousands of enhancers and core promoters in animal genomes have been annotated, and we have learned much about the domain structure in which regulatory genomes are organized in animals. Enhancer-core-promoter targeting occurs at several levels, including regulatory domains, DNA accessibility, and sequence-encoded core-promoter specificities that are likely mediated by different regulatory proteins. We review here current knowledge about enhancer-core-promoter targeting, regulatory communication between enhancers and core promoters, and the protein factors involved. We conclude with an outlook on open questions that we find particularly interesting and that will likely lead to additional insights in the upcoming years.

  9. Photoacoustic measurement of epidermal melanin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viator, John A.; Svaasand, Lars O.; Aguilar, Guillermo; Choi, Bernard; Nelson, J. Stuart

    2003-06-01

    Most dermatologic laser procedures must consider epidermal melanin, as it is a broadband optical absorber which affects subsurface fluence, effectively limiting the amount of light reaching the dermis and targeted chromophores. An accurate method for quantifying epidermal melanin content would aid clinicians in determining proper light dosage for therapeutic laser procedures. While epidermal melanin content has been quantified non-invasively using optical methods, there is currently no way to determine the melanin distribution in the epidermis. We have developed a photoacoustic probe that uses a Q-switched, frequency doubled Nd:YAG laser operating at 532nm to generate acoustic pulses in skin in vivo. The probe contained a piezoelectric element that detected photoacoustic waves which were then analyzed for epidermal melanin content, using a photoacoustic melanin index (PAMI). We tested 15 human subjects with skin types I--VI using the photoacoustic probe. We also present photoacoustic data for a human subject with vitiligo. Photoacoustic measurement showed melanin in the vitiligo subject was almost completely absent.

  10. Synthetic Melanin E-Ink.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Lingqian; Chen, Feng; Zhang, Xiaokang; Kuang, Tairong; Li, Mi; Hu, Jiaming; Shi, Junfeng; Lee, Ly James; Cheng, Huanyu; Li, Yiwen

    2017-05-17

    Extensive efforts have been devoted to the development of surfactant-free electronic ink (E-ink) with excellent display resolution for high-definition resolution display. Herein, we report the use of polydopamine-based synthetic melanin, a class of functional nanoparticles with similar chemical compositions and physical properties to those of naturally occurring melanin, as a new E-ink material. It was found that such E-ink displays could achieve ultrahigh resolution (>10 000 ppi) and low power consumption (operation voltage of only 1 V) in aqueous solutions. Interestingly, simple oxidation of synthetic melanin nanoparticles enables the generation of intrinsic fluorescence, allowing further development of fluorescent E-ink displays with nanoscale resolution. We describe these bioinspired materials in an initial proof-of-concept study and propose that synthetic melanin nanoparticles will be suitable for electronic nanoinks with a potential wide range of applications in molecular patterning and fluorescence bioimaging.

  11. The CompHP Core Competencies Framework for Health Promotion in Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barry, Margaret M.; Battel-Kirk, Barbara; Dempsey, Colette

    2012-01-01

    Background: The CompHP Project on Developing Competencies and Professional Standards for Health Promotion in Europe was developed in response to the need for new and changing health promotion competencies to address health challenges. This article presents the process of developing the CompHP Core Competencies Framework for Health Promotion across…

  12. The CompHP Core Competencies Framework for Health Promotion in Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barry, Margaret M.; Battel-Kirk, Barbara; Dempsey, Colette

    2012-01-01

    Background: The CompHP Project on Developing Competencies and Professional Standards for Health Promotion in Europe was developed in response to the need for new and changing health promotion competencies to address health challenges. This article presents the process of developing the CompHP Core Competencies Framework for Health Promotion across…

  13. Encapsulation into complex coacervate core micelles promotes EGFP dimerization

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nolles, A.; Dongen, Van N.J.E.; Westphal, A.H.; Visser, A.J.W.G.; Kleijn, J.M.; Berkel, Van W.J.H.; Borst, J.W.

    2017-01-01

    Complex coacervate core micelles (C3Ms) are colloidal structures useful for encapsulation of biomacromolecules. We previously demonstrated that enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) can be encapsulated into C3Ms using the diblock copolymer

  14. Predicting Polymerase Ⅱ Core Promoters by Cooperating Transcription Factor Binding Sites in Eukaryotic Genes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xiao-Tu MA; Min-Ping QIAN; Hai-Xu TANG

    2004-01-01

    Several discriminate functions for predicting core promoters that based on the potential cooperation between transcription factor binding sites (TFBSs) are discussed. It is demonstrated that the promoter predicting accuracy is improved when the cooperation among TFBSs is taken into consideration.The core promoter region of a newly discovered gene CKLFSF1 is predicted to locate more than 1.5 kb far away from the 5′ end of the transcript and in the last intron of its upstream gene, which is experimentally confirmed later. The core promoters of 3402 human RefSeq sequences, obtained by extending the mRNAs in human genome sequences, are predicted by our algorithm, and there are about 60% of the predicted core promoters locating within the ± 500 bp region relative to the annotated transcription start site.

  15. Synthetic Core Promoters as Universal Parts for Fine-Tuning Expression in Different Yeast Species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portela, Rui M C; Vogl, Thomas; Kniely, Claudia; Fischer, Jasmin E; Oliveira, Rui; Glieder, Anton

    2017-03-17

    Synthetic biology and metabolic engineering experiments frequently require the fine-tuning of gene expression to balance and optimize protein levels of regulators or metabolic enzymes. A key concept of synthetic biology is the development of modular parts that can be used in different contexts. Here, we have applied a computational multifactor design approach to generate de novo synthetic core promoters and 5' untranslated regions (UTRs) for yeast cells. In contrast to upstream cis-regulatory modules (CRMs), core promoters are typically not subject to specific regulation, making them ideal engineering targets for gene expression fine-tuning. 112 synthetic core promoter sequences were designed on the basis of the sequence/function relationship of natural core promoters, nucleosome occupancy and the presence of short motifs. The synthetic core promoters were fused to the Pichia pastoris AOX1 CRM, and the resulting activity spanned more than a 200-fold range (0.3% to 70.6% of the wild type AOX1 level). The top-ten synthetic core promoters with highest activity were fused to six additional CRMs (three in P. pastoris and three in Saccharomyces cerevisiae). Inducible CRM constructs showed significantly higher activity than constitutive CRMs, reaching up to 176% of natural core promoters. Comparing the activity of the same synthetic core promoters fused to different CRMs revealed high correlations only for CRMs within the same organism. These data suggest that modularity is maintained to some extent but only within the same organism. Due to the conserved role of eukaryotic core promoters, this rational design concept may be transferred to other organisms as a generic engineering tool.

  16. Blood Supply--Susceptible Formation of Melanin Pigment in Hair Bulb Melanocytes of Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shogo Maeda, MD

    2015-03-01

    Conclusions: Melanin pigment formation in the hair bulb melanocytes appeared to be susceptible to the blood supply, and melanocytosis was promoted in the follicles and in the epidermis of Kitl-Tg C57BL/6 mice.

  17. Evolution of Drosophila ribosomal protein gene core promoters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Xiaotu; Zhang, Kangyu; Li, Xiaoman

    2009-03-01

    The coordinated expression of ribosomal protein genes (RPGs) has been well documented in many species. Previous analyses of RPG promoters focus only on Fungi and mammals. Recognizing this gap and using a comparative genomics approach, we utilize a motif-finding algorithm that incorporates cross-species conservation to identify several significant motifs in Drosophila RPG promoters. As a result, significant differences of the enriched motifs in RPG promoter are found among Drosophila, Fungi, and mammals, demonstrating the evolutionary dynamics of the ribosomal gene regulatory network. We also report a motif present in similar numbers of RPGs among Drosophila species which does not appear to be conserved at the individual RPG gene level. A module-wise stabilizing selection theory is proposed to explain this observation. Overall, our results provide significant insight into the fast-evolving nature of transcriptional regulation in the RPG module.

  18. Study of Melanin Bleaching After Immunohistochemistry of Melanin-containing Tissues

    OpenAIRE

    2015-01-01

    Melanin may interfere with immunohistochemical staining. The goal of this study was to investigate the effects of trichloroisocyanuric acid (TCCA) bleaching, potassium permanganate bleaching, and potassium dichromate bleaching on melanin, tissue antigen, and 3,3′-diaminobenzidine (DAB) using melanin-containing and melanin-free tissue samples. Our results demonstrated that all 3 bleaching methods efficiently bleached melanin and partially destroyed tissue antigen. In addition, potassium perman...

  19. Evolutionary trend of exceptionally long human core promoter short tandem repeats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohadi, M; Mohammadparast, S; Darvish, H

    2012-10-01

    Short tandem repeats (STRs) are variable elements that play a significant role in genome evolution by creating and maintaining quantitative genetic variation. Because of their proximity to the +1 transcription start site (TSS) and polymorphic nature, core promoter STRs may be considered a novel source of variation across species. In a genome-scale analysis of the entire human protein-coding genes annotated in the GeneCards database (19,927), we analyze the prevalence and repeat numbers of different classes of core promoter STRs in the interval between -120 and +1 to the TSS. We also analyze the evolutionary trend of exceptionally long core promoter STRs of ≥6-repeats. 133 genes (~2%) had core promoter STRs of ≥6-repeats. In the majority of those genes, the STR motifs were found to be conserved across evolution. Di-nucleotide repeats had the highest representation in the human core promoter long STRs (72 genes). Tri- (52 genes), tetra-, penta-, and hexa-nucleotide STRs (9 genes) were also present in the descending prevalence. The majority of those genes (84 genes) revealed directional expansion of core promoter STRs from mouse to human. However, in a number of genes, the difference in average allele size across species was sufficiently small that there might be a constraint on the evolution of average allele size. Random drift of STRs from mouse to human was also observed in a minority of genes. Future work on the genes listed in the current study may further our knowledge into the potential importance of core promoter STRs in human evolution.

  20. Fungal melanins differ in planar stacking distances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casadevall, Arturo; Nakouzi, Antonio; Crippa, Pier R; Eisner, Melvin

    2012-01-01

    Melanins are notoriously difficult to study because they are amorphous, insoluble and often associated with other biological materials. Consequently, there is a dearth of structural techniques to study this enigmatic pigment. Current models of melanin structure envision the stacking of planar structures. X ray diffraction has historically been used to deduce stacking parameters. In this study we used X ray diffraction to analyze melanins derived from Cryptococcus neoformans, Aspergillus niger, Wangiella dermatitides and Coprinus comatus. Analysis of melanin in melanized C. neoformans encapsulated cells was precluded by the fortuitous finding that the capsular polysaccharide had a diffraction spectrum that was similar to that of isolated melanin. The capsular polysaccharide spectrum was dominated by a broad non-Bragg feature consistent with origin from a repeating structural motif that may arise from inter-molecular interactions and/or possibly gel organization. Hence, we isolated melanin from each fungal species and compared diffraction parameters. The results show that the inferred stacking distances of fungal melanins differ from that reported for synthetic melanin and neuromelanin, occupying intermediate position between these other melanins. These results suggest that all melanins have a fundamental diffracting unit composed of planar graphitic assemblies that can differ in stacking distance. The stacking peak appears to be a distinguishing universal feature of melanins that may be of use in characterizing these enigmatic pigments.

  1. Synthesis and assembly of fungal melanin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisenman, Helene C; Casadevall, Arturo

    2012-02-01

    Melanin is a unique pigment with myriad functions that is found in all biological kingdoms. It is multifunctional, providing defense against environmental stresses such as ultraviolet (UV) light, oxidizing agents and ionizing radiation. Melanin contributes to the ability of fungi to survive in harsh environments. In addition, it plays a role in fungal pathogenesis. Melanin is an amorphous polymer that is produced by one of two synthetic pathways. Fungi may synthesize melanin from endogenous substrate via a 1,8-dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN) intermediate. Alternatively, some fungi produce melanin from L-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-dopa). The detailed chemical structure of melanin is not known. However, microscopic studies show that it has an overall granular structure. In fungi, melanin granules are localized to the cell wall where they are likely cross-linked to polysaccharides. Recent studies suggest the fungal melanin may be synthesized in internal vesicles akin to mammalian melanosomes and transported to the cell wall. Potential applications of melanin take advantage of melanin's radioprotective properties and propensity to bind to a variety of substances.

  2. Major histocompatibility complex class I core promoter elements are not essential for transcription in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbash, Zohar S; Weissman, Jocelyn D; Campbell, John A; Mu, Jie; Singer, Dinah S

    2013-11-01

    The role of core promoter elements in regulating transcription initiation is largely unknown for genes subject to complex regulation. Major histocompatibility complex class I genes are ubiquitously expressed and governed by tissue-specific and hormonal signals. Transcription initiates at multiple sites within the core promoter, which contains elements homologous to the canonical elements CCAAT, TATAA, Sp1 binding site (Sp1BS), and Initiator (Inr). To determine their functions, expression of class I transgenes with individually mutated elements was assessed. Surprisingly, all mutant promoters supported transcription. However, each mutated core promoter element had a distinct effect on expression: CAAT box mutations modulated constitutive expression in nonlymphoid tissues, whereas TATAA-like element mutations dysregulated transcription in lymphoid tissues. Inr mutations aberrantly elevated expression. Sp1BS element mutations resulted in variegated transgene expression. RNA polymerase II binding and histone H3K4me3 patterns correlated with transgene expression; H3K9me3 marks partially correlated. Whereas the wild-type, TATAA-like, and CAAT mutant promoters were activated by gamma interferon, the Sp1 and Inr mutants were repressed, implicating these elements in regulation of hormonal responses. These results lead to the surprising conclusion that no single element is required for promoter activity. Rather, each plays a distinct role in promoter activity, chromatin structure, tissue-specific expression, and extracellular signaling.

  3. Genome-wide computational prediction and analysis of core promoter elements across plant monocots and dicots.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sunita Kumari

    Full Text Available Transcription initiation, essential to gene expression regulation, involves recruitment of basal transcription factors to the core promoter elements (CPEs. The distribution of currently known CPEs across plant genomes is largely unknown. This is the first large scale genome-wide report on the computational prediction of CPEs across eight plant genomes to help better understand the transcription initiation complex assembly. The distribution of thirteen known CPEs across four monocots (Brachypodium distachyon, Oryza sativa ssp. japonica, Sorghum bicolor, Zea mays and four dicots (Arabidopsis thaliana, Populus trichocarpa, Vitis vinifera, Glycine max reveals the structural organization of the core promoter in relation to the TATA-box as well as with respect to other CPEs. The distribution of known CPE motifs with respect to transcription start site (TSS exhibited positional conservation within monocots and dicots with slight differences across all eight genomes. Further, a more refined subset of annotated genes based on orthologs of the model monocot (O. sativa ssp. japonica and dicot (A. thaliana genomes supported the positional distribution of these thirteen known CPEs. DNA free energy profiles provided evidence that the structural properties of promoter regions are distinctly different from that of the non-regulatory genome sequence. It also showed that monocot core promoters have lower DNA free energy than dicot core promoters. The comparison of monocot and dicot promoter sequences highlights both the similarities and differences in the core promoter architecture irrespective of the species-specific nucleotide bias. This study will be useful for future work related to genome annotation projects and can inspire research efforts aimed to better understand regulatory mechanisms of transcription.

  4. Production of natural melanin by Auricularia auricula and study on its molecular structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Shujing; Zhang, Xiaojuan; Sun, Shiwei; Zhang, Liaoyuan; Shan, Shukai; Zhu, Hu

    2016-01-01

    In this study, the production and structure of melanin produced by Auricularia auricula have been determined and analyzed in detail. The results showed that the highest mycelial growth rate was observed in low-carbon and carbon-free medium. In low-nitrogen and nitrogen-free medium, melanin yield was very low. Deficiency of tyrosine in medium led to weak secretion of melanin. The inorganic salt could markedly influence mycelia morphology, but did not obviously impact mycelia growth rate and melanin yield. Meanwhile the condensed molecular formula ([C18(OR)3H7O4N2]n) and structural formula of melanin were concluded based on UV-Vis, HPLC, FTIR, NMR and elemental assay. This is an eumelanin and also a macromolecular polymer of 5,6-dihydroxyindole and 5,6-dihydroxyindole-2-carboxylic acid. The 6 main components were phenolic hydroxyl, carboxyl, amidogen, carbonyl, methylene, methyne and sulfur. This work testified that nutritional control was very important to promote melanin production, making melanin more affordable as material in food, cosmetics and medicines.

  5. Fanconi anemia core complex gene promoters harbor conserved transcription regulatory elements.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Meier

    Full Text Available The Fanconi anemia (FA gene family is a recent addition to the complex network of proteins that respond to and repair certain types of DNA damage in the human genome. Since little is known about the regulation of this novel group of genes at the DNA level, we characterized the promoters of the eight genes (FANCA, B, C, E, F, G, L and M that compose the FA core complex. The promoters of these genes show the characteristic attributes of housekeeping genes, such as a high GC content and CpG islands, a lack of TATA boxes and a low conservation. The promoters functioned in a monodirectional way and were, in their most active regions, comparable in strength to the SV40 promoter in our reporter plasmids. They were also marked by a distinctive transcriptional start site (TSS. In the 5' region of each promoter, we identified a region that was able to negatively regulate the promoter activity in HeLa and HEK 293 cells in isolation. The central and 3' regions of the promoter sequences harbor binding sites for several common and rare transcription factors, including STAT, SMAD, E2F, AP1 and YY1, which indicates that there may be cross-connections to several established regulatory pathways. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays and siRNA experiments confirmed the shared regulatory responses between the prominent members of the TGF-β and JAK/STAT pathways and members of the FA core complex. Although the promoters are not well conserved, they share region and sequence specific regulatory motifs and transcription factor binding sites (TBFs, and we identified a bi-partite nature to these promoters. These results support a hypothesis based on the co-evolution of the FA core complex genes that was expanded to include their promoters.

  6. Characterization and identification of microRNA core promoters in four model species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xuefeng Zhou

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available MicroRNAs are short, noncoding RNAs that play important roles in post-transcriptional gene regulation. Although many functions of microRNAs in plants and animals have been revealed in recent years, the transcriptional mechanism of microRNA genes is not well-understood. To elucidate the transcriptional regulation of microRNA genes, we study and characterize, in a genome scale, the promoters of intergenic microRNA genes in Caenorhabditis elegans, Homo sapiens, Arabidopsis thaliana, and Oryza sativa. We show that most known microRNA genes in these four species have the same type of promoters as protein-coding genes have. To further characterize the promoters of microRNA genes, we developed a novel promoter prediction method, called common query voting (CoVote, which is more effective than available promoter prediction methods. Using this new method, we identify putative core promoters of most known microRNA genes in the four model species. Moreover, we characterize the promoters of microRNA genes in these four species. We discover many significant, characteristic sequence motifs in these core promoters, several of which match or resemble the known cis-acting elements for transcription initiation. Among these motifs, some are conserved across different species while some are specific to microRNA genes of individual species.

  7. Quantitative Analyses of Core Promoters Enable Precise Engineering of Regulated Gene Expression in Mammalian Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ede, Christopher; Chen, Ximin; Lin, Meng-Yin; Chen, Yvonne Y

    2016-05-20

    Inducible transcription systems play a crucial role in a wide array of synthetic biology circuits. However, the majority of inducible promoters are constructed from a limited set of tried-and-true promoter parts, which are susceptible to common shortcomings such as high basal expression levels (i.e., leakiness). To expand the toolbox for regulated mammalian gene expression and facilitate the construction of mammalian genetic circuits with precise functionality, we quantitatively characterized a panel of eight core promoters, including sequences with mammalian, viral, and synthetic origins. We demonstrate that this selection of core promoters can provide a wide range of basal gene expression levels and achieve a gradient of fold-inductions spanning 2 orders of magnitude. Furthermore, commonly used parts such as minimal CMV and minimal SV40 promoters were shown to achieve robust gene expression upon induction, but also suffer from high levels of leakiness. In contrast, a synthetic promoter, YB_TATA, was shown to combine low basal expression with high transcription rate in the induced state to achieve significantly higher fold-induction ratios compared to all other promoters tested. These behaviors remain consistent when the promoters are coupled to different genetic outputs and different response elements, as well as across different host-cell types and DNA copy numbers. We apply this quantitative understanding of core promoter properties to the successful engineering of human T cells that respond to antigen stimulation via chimeric antigen receptor signaling specifically under hypoxic environments. Results presented in this study can facilitate the design and calibration of future mammalian synthetic biology systems capable of precisely programmed functionality.

  8. HCV core protein promotes hepatocyte proliferation and chemoresistance by inhibiting NR4A1

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tan, Yongsheng, E-mail: yongshengtanwhu@126.com; Li, Yan, E-mail: liyansd2@163.com

    2015-10-23

    This study investigated the effect of HCV core protein on the proliferation of hepatocytes and hepatocellular carcinoma cells (HCC), the influence of HCV core protein on HCC apoptosis induced by the chemotherapeutic agent cisplatin, and the mechanism through which HCV core protein acts as a potential oncoprotein in HCV-related HCC by measuring the levels of NR4A1 and Runt-related transcription factor 3 (RUNX3), which are associated with tumor suppression and chemotherapy resistance. In the present study, PcDNA3.1-core and RUNX3 siRNA were transfected into LO2 and HepG2 cells using Lipofectamine 2000. LO2-core, HepG2-core, LO2-RUNX3 {sup low} and control cells were treated with different concentrations of cisplatin for 72 h, and cell proliferation and apoptosis were assayed using the CellTiter 96{sup ®}Aqueous Non-Radioactive Cell Proliferation Assay Kit. Western blot and real time PCR analyses were used to detect NR4A1, RUNX3, smad7, Cyclin D1 and BAX. Confocal microscopy was used to determine the levels of NR4A1 in HepG2 and HepG2-core cells. The growth rate of HepG2-core cells was considerably greater than that of HepG2 cells. HCV core protein increased the expression of cyclin D1 and decreased the expressions of NR4A1 and RUNX3. In LO2 – RUNX3 {sup low}, the rate of cell proliferation and the level of cisplatin resistance were the same as in the LO2 -core. These results suggest that HCV core protein decreases the sensitivity of hepatocytes to cisplatin by inhibiting the expression of NR4A1 and promoting the expression of smad7, which negatively regulates the TGF-β pathway. This effect results in down regulation of RUNX3, a target of the TGF-β pathway. Taken together, these findings indicate that in hepatocytes, HCV core protein increases drug resistance and inhibits cell apoptosis by inhibiting the expressions of NR4A1 and RUNX3. - Highlights: • HCV core protein inhibits HepG2 cell sensitivity to cisplatin. • Core expression in HepG2 decreases

  9. Genome-wide computational prediction and analysis of core promoter elements across plant monocots and dicots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Transcription initiation, essential to gene expression regulation, involves recruitment of basal transcription factors to the core promoter elements (CPEs). The distribution of currently known CPEs across plant genomes is largely unknown. This is the first large scale genome-wide report on the compu...

  10. PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN CTSI AND BUSINESS SCHOOLS CAN PROMOTE BEST PRACTICES FOR CORE FACILITIES AND RESOURCES

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reeves, Lilith; Dunn-Jensen, Linda M.; Baldwin, Timothy T.; Tatikonda, Mohan V.; Cornetta, Kenneth

    2013-01-01

    Biomedical research enterprises require a large number of core facilities and resources to supply the infrastructure necessary for translational research. Maintaining the financial viability and promoting efficiency in an academic environment can be particularly challenging for medical schools and universities. The Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute sought to improve core and service programs through a partnership with the Indiana University Kelley School of Business. The program paired teams of Masters of Business Administration students with cores and programs that self-identified the need for assistance in project management, financial management, marketing, or resource efficiency. The projects were developed by CTSI project managers and business school faculty using service-learning principles to ensure learning for students who also received course credit for their participation. With three years of experience, the program demonstrates a successful partnership that improves clinical research infrastructure by promoting business best practices and providing a valued learning experience for business students. PMID:23919365

  11. Partnership between CTSI and business schools can promote best practices for core facilities and resources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reeves, Lilith; Dunn-Jensen, Linda M; Baldwin, Timothy T; Tatikonda, Mohan V; Cornetta, Kenneth

    2013-08-01

    Biomedical research enterprises require a large number of core facilities and resources to supply the infrastructure necessary for translational research. Maintaining the financial viability and promoting efficiency in an academic environment can be particularly challenging for medical schools and universities. The Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute sought to improve core and service programs through a partnership with the Indiana University Kelley School of Business. The program paired teams of Masters of Business Administration students with cores and programs that self-identified the need for assistance in project management, financial management, marketing, or resource efficiency. The projects were developed by CTSI project managers and business school faculty using service-learning principles to ensure learning for students who also received course credit for their participation. With three years of experience, the program demonstrates a successful partnership that improves clinical research infrastructure by promoting business best practices and providing a valued learning experience for business students. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Genome-wide detection and analysis of hippocampus core promoters using DeepCAGE

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Valen, Eivind; Pascarella, Giovanni; Chalk, Alistair;

    2009-01-01

    in a given tissue. Here, we present a new method for high-throughput sequencing of 5' cDNA tags-DeepCAGE: merging the Cap Analysis of Gene Expression method with ultra-high-throughput sequence technology. We apply DeepCAGE to characterize 1.4 million sequenced TSS from mouse hippocampus and reveal a wealth...... of novel core promoters that are preferentially used in hippocampus: This is the most comprehensive promoter data set for any tissue to date. Using these data, we present evidence indicating a key role for the Arnt2 transcription factor in hippocampus gene regulation. DeepCAGE can also detect promoters...

  13. Engaging Stakeholders and Promoting Uptake of OMERACT Core Outcome Instrument Sets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tunis, Sean R; Maxwell, Lara J; Graham, Ian D; Shea, Beverley J; Beaton, Dorcas E; Bingham, Clifton O; Brooks, Peter; Conaghan, Philip G; D'Agostino, Maria Antonietta; de Wit, Maarten P; Gossec, Laure; March, Lyn M; Simon, Lee S; Singh, Jasvinder A; Strand, Vibeke; Wells, George A; Tugwell, Peter

    2017-08-01

    While there has been substantial progress in the development of core outcomes sets, the degree to which these are used by researchers is variable. We convened a special workshop on knowledge translation at the Outcome Measures in Rheumatology (OMERACT) 2016 with 2 main goals. The first focused on the development of a formal knowledge translation framework and the second on promoting uptake of recommended core outcome domain and instrument sets. We invited all 189 OMERACT 2016 attendees to the workshop; 86 attended, representing patient research partners (n = 15), healthcare providers/clinician researchers (n = 52), industry (n = 4), regulatory agencies (n = 4), and OMERACT fellows (n = 11). Participants were given an introduction to knowledge translation and were asked to propose and discuss recommendations for the OMERACT community to (1) strengthen stakeholder involvement in the core outcome instrument set development process, and (2) promote uptake of core outcome sets with a specific focus on the potential role of post-regulatory decision makers. We developed the novel "OMERACT integrated knowledge translation" framework, which formalizes OMERACT's knowledge translation strategies. We produced strategies to improve stakeholder engagement throughout the process of core outcome set development and created a list of creative and innovative ways to promote the uptake of OMERACT's core outcome sets. The guidance provided in this paper is preliminary and is based on the views of the participants. Future work will engage OMERACT groups, "post-regulatory decision makers," and a broad range of different stakeholders to identify and evaluate the most useful methods and processes, and to revise guidance accordingly.

  14. Spiders do have melanin after all.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsiung, Bor-Kai; Blackledge, Todd A; Shawkey, Matthew D

    2015-11-01

    Melanin pigments are broadly distributed in nature - from bacteria to fungi to plants and animals. However, many previous attempts to identify melanins in spiders were unsuccessful, suggesting that these otherwise ubiquitous pigments were lost during spider evolution. Yet, spiders exhibit many dark colours similar to those produced by melanins in other organisms, and the low solubility of melanins makes isolation and characterization difficult. Therefore, whether melanins are truly absent or have simply not yet been detected is an open question. Raman spectroscopy provides a reliable way to detect melanins in situ, without the need for isolation. In this study, we document the presence of eumelanin in diverse species of spiders using confocal Raman microspectroscopy. Comparisons of spectra with theoretically calculated data falsify the previous hypothesis that dark colours are produced solely by ommochromes in spiders. Our data indicate that melanins are present in spiders and further supporting that they are present in most living organisms. © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  15. Core Promoter Plasticity Between Maize Tissues and Genotypes Contrasts with Predominance of Sharp Transcription Initiation Sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mejía-Guerra, María Katherine; Li, Wei; Galeano, Narmer F; Vidal, Mabel; Gray, John; Doseff, Andrea I; Grotewold, Erich

    2015-12-01

    Core promoters are crucial for gene regulation, providing blueprints for the assembly of transcriptional machinery at transcription start sites (TSSs). Empirically, TSSs define the coordinates of core promoters and other regulatory sequences. Thus, experimental TSS identification provides an essential step in the characterization of promoters and their features. Here, we describe the application of CAGE (cap analysis of gene expression) to identify genome-wide TSSs used in root and shoot tissues of two maize (Zea mays) inbred lines (B73 and Mo17). Our studies indicate that most TSS clusters are sharp in maize, similar to mice, but distinct from Arabidopsis thaliana, Drosophila melanogaster, or zebra fish, in which a majority of genes have broad-shaped TSS clusters. We established that ∼38% of maize promoters are characterized by a broader TATA-motif consensus, and this motif is significantly enriched in genes with sharp TSSs. A noteworthy plasticity in TSS usage between tissues and inbreds was uncovered, with ∼1500 genes showing significantly different dominant TSSs, sometimes affecting protein sequence by providing alternate translation initiation codons. We experimentally characterized instances in which this differential TSS utilization results in protein isoforms with additional domains or targeted to distinct subcellular compartments. These results provide important insights into TSS selection and gene expression in an agronomically important crop.

  16. Variations in the core promoter/pre-core region in HBV genotype C in Japanese and Northern Vietnamese patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Truong, Bui Xuan; Yano, Yoshihiko; Seo, Yasushi; Phuong, Tran Minh; Tanaka, Yasuhito; Kato, Hirotaka; Miki, Akira; Utsumi, Takako; Azuma, Takeshi; Trach, Nguyen Khanh; Mizokami, Masashi; Hayashi, Yoshitake; Kasuga, Masato

    2007-09-01

    Hepatitis B virus (HBV) subgenotypes Cs (C1) and Ce (C2) are common in East Asia. To investigate the genomic difference of HBV genotype C between two separated regions, 50 subgenotype Cs-infected Vietnamese and 70 subgenotype Ce-infected Japanese patients were enrolled for analysis. The patients were categorized to either a hepatocellular carcinoma group (HCC) or a non-HCC group including liver cirrhosis, chronic hepatitis, and asymptomatic carriers. HBV serology, HBV-DNA level, and variations in core promoter/pre-core region were examined. Phylogenetic analysis based on the full genome sequences and nucleotide sequences partly in the S gene and in the P gene revealed that all Japanese strains (70/70) were subgenotype Ce, and nearly all of the Vietnamese strains (50/51) were subgenotype Cs, excluding one subgenotype C5. C1858 and G1775 were common in the Vietnamese (64% and 40%) but not in the Japanese (0%). The prevalence of C/A1753 in Vietnamese was higher than that in the Japanese (32% vs. 17.1%), however the frequency of A1896 in the Japanese was significantly higher (32.9% vs. 12%, P HBV-DNA, the Japanese HCC had a relatively low level. In the Vietnamese, C/A1753 and C1858 were associated closely with T1762A1764, higher HBV-DNA levels and higher HCC incidence. The multivariate analysis revealed that male, T1653 and C/A1753 were independent risk factors for HCC. The subgenotypes and unique mutations of HBV genotype C in the Vietnamese and Japanese differed, and C/A1753 and C1858 variants might play a role in the pathogenesis of liver disease in Vietnamese patients.

  17. Rab11b mediates melanin transfer between donor melanocytes and acceptor keratinocytes via coupled exo/endocytosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarafder, Abul K; Bolasco, Giulia; Correia, Maria S; Pereira, Francisco J C; Iannone, Lucio; Hume, Alistair N; Kirkpatrick, Niall; Picardo, Mauro; Torrisi, Maria R; Rodrigues, Inês P; Ramalho, José S; Futter, Clare E; Barral, Duarte C; Seabra, Miguel C

    2014-04-01

    The transfer of melanin from melanocytes to keratinocytes is a crucial process underlying maintenance of skin pigmentation and photoprotection against UV damage. Here, we present evidence supporting coupled exocytosis of the melanin core, or melanocore, by melanocytes and subsequent endocytosis by keratinocytes as a predominant mechanism of melanin transfer. Electron microscopy analysis of human skin samples revealed three lines of evidence supporting this: (1) the presence of melanocores in the extracellular space; (2) within keratinocytes, melanin was surrounded by a single membrane; and (3) this membrane lacked the melanosomal membrane protein tyrosinase-related protein 1 (TYRP1). Moreover, co-culture of melanocytes and keratinocytes suggests that melanin exocytosis is specifically induced by keratinocytes. Furthermore, depletion of Rab11b, but not Rab27a, caused a marked decrease in both keratinocyte-stimulated melanin exocytosis and transfer to keratinocytes. Thus, we propose that the predominant mechanism of melanin transfer is keratinocyte-induced exocytosis, mediated by Rab11b through remodeling of the melanosome membrane, followed by subsequent endocytosis by keratinocytes.

  18. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy for sepia melanin

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Mbonyiryivuze, A

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available intensively studied biomolecule systems such as nucleic acid, proteins and carbohydrates. Melanins have been reported to have a diverse number of functions in the biosystem, including photosensitization, metal ion chelation, photoprotection to absorb a broad...

  19. Core histone genes of Giardia intestinalis: genomic organization, promoter structure, and expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Rodney D

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Giardia intestinalis is a protist found in freshwaters worldwide, and is the most common cause of parasitic diarrhea in humans. The phylogenetic position of this parasite is still much debated. Histones are small, highly conserved proteins that associate tightly with DNA to form chromatin within the nucleus. There are two classes of core histone genes in higher eukaryotes: DNA replication-independent histones and DNA replication-dependent ones. Results We identified two copies each of the core histone H2a, H2b and H3 genes, and three copies of the H4 gene, at separate locations on chromosomes 3, 4 and 5 within the genome of Giardia intestinalis, but no gene encoding a H1 linker histone could be recognized. The copies of each gene share extensive DNA sequence identities throughout their coding and 5' noncoding regions, which suggests these copies have arisen from relatively recent gene duplications or gene conversions. The transcription start sites are at triplet A sequences 1–27 nucleotides upstream of the translation start codon for each gene. We determined that a 50 bp region upstream from the start of the histone H4 coding region is the minimal promoter, and a highly conserved 15 bp sequence called the histone motif (him is essential for its activity. The Giardia core histone genes are constitutively expressed at approximately equivalent levels and their mRNAs are polyadenylated. Competition gel-shift experiments suggest that a factor within the protein complex that binds him may also be a part of the protein complexes that bind other promoter elements described previously in Giardia. Conclusion In contrast to other eukaryotes, the Giardia genome has only a single class of core histone genes that encode replication-independent histones. Our inability to locate a gene encoding the linker histone H1 leads us to speculate that the H1 protein may not be required for the compaction of Giardia's small and gene-rich genome.

  20. Actinobacterial melanins: current status and perspective for the future.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manivasagan, Panchanathan; Venkatesan, Jayachandran; Sivakumar, Kannan; Kim, Se-Kwon

    2013-10-01

    Melanins are enigmatic pigments that are produced by a wide variety of microorganisms including several species of bacteria and fungi. Melanins are biological macromolecules with multiple important functions, yet their structures are not well understood. Melanins are frequently used in medicine, pharmacology, and cosmetics preparations. Melanins also have great application potential in agriculture industry. They have several biological functions including photoprotection, thermoregulation, action as free radical sinks, cation chelators, and antibiotics. Plants and insects incorporate melanins as cell wall and cuticle strengtheners, respectively. Actinobacteria are the most economically as well as biotechnologically valuable prokaryotes. However, the melanin properties are, in general, poorly understood. In this review an evaluation is made on the present state of research on actinobacterial melanins and its perspectives. The highlights include the production and biotechnological applications of melanins in agriculture, food, cosmetic and medicinal fields. With increasing advancement in science and technology, there would be greater demands in the future for melanins produced by actinobacteria from various sources.

  1. DOPA and DHN pathway orchestrate melanin synthesis in Aspergillus species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pal, Anuradha K; Gajjar, Devarshi U; Vasavada, Abhay R

    2014-01-01

    Melanins are high molecular weight hydrophobic pigments that have been studied for their role in the virulence of fungal pathogens. We investigated the amount and type of melanin in 20 isolates of Aspergillus spp.; A. niger (n = 3), A. flavus (n = 5), A. tamarii (n = 3), A. terreus (n = 3), A. tubingensis (n = 3), A. sydowii (n = 3). Aspergillus spp. were identified by sequencing the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region. Extraction of melanin from culture filtrate and fungal biomass was done and followed by qualitative and quantitative analysis of melanin pigment. Ultraviolet (UV), Fourier transformed infrared (FT-IR), and electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectra analyses confirmed the presence of melanin. The melanin pathway was studied by analyzing the effects of inhibitors; kojic acid, tropolone, phthalide, and tricyclazole. The results indicate that in A. niger and A. tubingensis melanin was found in both culture filtrate and fungal biomass. For A. tamarii and A. flavus melanin was extracted from biomass only, whereas melanin was found only in culture filtrate for A. terreus. A negligible amount of melanin was found in A. sydowii. The maximum amount of melanin from culture filtrate and fungal biomass was found in A. niger and A. tamarrii, respectively. The DOPA (3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine) pathway produces melanin in A. niger, A. tamarii and A. flavus, whereas the DHN (1,8-dihydroxynaphthalene) pathway produces melanin in A. tubingensis and A. terreus. It can be concluded that the amount and type of melanin in aspergilli largely differ from species to species.

  2. Study of melanin bleaching after immunohistochemistry of melanin-containing tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Hongwu; Wu, Wenqiao

    2015-04-01

    Melanin may interfere with immunohistochemical staining. The goal of this study was to investigate the effects of trichloroisocyanuric acid (TCCA) bleaching, potassium permanganate bleaching, and potassium dichromate bleaching on melanin, tissue antigen, and 3,3'-diaminobenzidine (DAB) using melanin-containing and melanin-free tissue samples. Our results demonstrated that all 3 bleaching methods efficiently bleached melanin and partially destroyed tissue antigen. In addition, potassium permanganate bleaching and potassium dichromate bleaching clearly destroyed DAB, whereas TCCA bleaching had no significant effect on DAB. Therefore, neither potassium permanganate nor potassium dichromate is an ideal solution, whereas TCCA might be an ideal solution for melanin bleaching after the immunohistochemical staining of melanin-containing tissues. After immunostaining followed by TCCA bleaching, the melanin could be completely removed in all 120 malignant melanoma tissue sections. Compared with the control, the DAB intensity was clear, and the tissue structure and cellular nuclei were well maintained. It is worth noting that TCCA should be freshly prepared before each experiment, and used within 2 hours of its preparation. In addition, sections should not be incubated with TCCA for over 30 minutes.

  3. Genome-wide identification of human- and primate-specific core promoter short tandem repeats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bushehri, A; Barez, M R Mashhoudi; Mansouri, S K; Biglarian, A; Ohadi, M

    2016-08-01

    Recent reports of a link between human- and primate-specific genetic factors and human/primate-specific characteristics and diseases necessitate genome-wide identification of those factors. We have previously reported core promoter short tandem repeats (STRs) of extreme length (≥6-repeats) that have expanded exceptionally in primates vs. non-primates, and may have a function in adaptive evolution. In the study reported here, we extended our study to the human STRs of ≥3-repeats in the category of penta and hexaucleotide STRs, across the entire human protein coding gene core promoters, and analyzed their status in several superorders and orders of vertebrates, using the Ensembl database. The ConSite software was used to identify the transcription factor (TF) sets binding to those STRs. STR specificity was observed at different levels of human and non-human primate (NHP) evolution. 73% of the pentanucleotide STRs and 68% of the hexanucleotide STRs were found to be specific to human and NHPs. AP-2alpha, Sp1, and MZF were the predominantly selected TFs (90%) binding to the human-specific STRs. Furthermore, the number of TF sets binding to a given STR was found to be a selection factor for that STR. Our findings indicate that selected STRs, the cognate binding TFs, and the number of TF set binding to those STRs function as switch codes at different levels of human and NHP evolution and speciation.

  4. Combined exposure to big endothelin-1 and mechanical loading in bovine sternal cores promotes osteogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Luisa A; Johnson, Michael G; Cullen, Diane M; Vivanco, Juan F; Blank, Robert D; Ploeg, Heidi-Lynn; Smith, Everett L

    2016-04-01

    Increased bone formation resulting from mechanical loading is well documented; however, the interactions of the mechanotransduction pathways are less well understood. Endothelin-1, a ubiquitous autocrine/paracrine signaling molecule promotes osteogenesis in metastatic disease. In the present study, it was hypothesized that exposure to big endothelin-1 (big ET1) and/or mechanical loading would promote osteogenesis in ex vivo trabecular bone cores. In a 2×2 factorial trial of daily mechanical loading (-2000με, 120cycles daily, "jump" waveform) and big ET1 (25ng/mL), 48 bovine sternal trabecular bone cores were maintained in bioreactor chambers for 23days. The bone cores' response to the treatment stimuli was assessed with percent change in core apparent elastic modulus (ΔEapp), static and dynamic histomorphometry, and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) secretion. Two-way ANOVA with a post hoc Fisher's LSD test found no significant treatment effects on ΔEapp (p=0.25 and 0.51 for load and big ET1, respectively). The ΔEapp in the "no load + big ET1" (CE, 13±12.2%, p=0.56), "load + no big ET1" (LC, 17±3.9%, p=0.14) and "load + big ET1" (LE, 19±4.2%, p=0.13) treatment groups were not statistically different than the control group (CC, 3.3%±8.6%). Mineralizing surface (MS/BS), mineral apposition (MAR) and bone formation rates (BFR/BS) were significantly greater in LE than CC (p=0.037, 0.0040 and 0.019, respectively). While the histological bone formation markers in LC trended to be greater than CC (p=0.055, 0.11 and 0.074, respectively) there was no difference between CE and CC (p=0.61, 0.50 and 0.72, respectively). Cores in LE and LC had more than 50% greater MS/BS (p=0.037, p=0.055 respectively) and MAR (p=0.0040, p=0.11 respectively) than CC. The BFR/BS was more than two times greater in LE (p=0.019) and LC (p=0.074) than CC. The PGE2 levels were elevated at 8days post-osteotomy in all groups and the treatment groups remained elevated compared to the CC group on days 15

  5. Melanin directly converts light for vertebrate metabolic use: heuristic thoughts on birds, Icarus and dark human skin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodman, Geoffrey; Bercovich, Dani

    2008-08-01

    Pigments serve many visually obvious animal functions (e.g. hair, skin, eyes, feathers, scales). One is 'melanin', unusual in an absorption across the UV-visual spectrum which is controversial. Any polymer or macro-structure of melanin monomers is 'melanin'. Its roles derive from complex structural and physical-chemical properties e.g. semiconductor, stable radical, conductor, free radical scavenger, charge-transfer. Clinicians and researchers are well acquainted with melanin in skin and ocular pathologies and now increasingly are with internal, melanized, pathology-associated sites not obviously subject to light radiation (e.g. brain, cochlea). At both types of sites some findings puzzle: positive and negative neuromelanin effects in Parkinsons; unexpected melanocyte action in the cochlea, in deafness; melanin reduces DNA damage, but can promote melanoma; in melanotic cells, mitochondrial number was 83% less, respiration down 30%, but development similar to normal amelanotic cells. A little known, avian anatomical conundrum may help resolve melanin paradoxes. One of many unique adaptations to flight, the pecten, strange intra-ocular organ with unresolved function(s), is much enlarged and heavily melanized in birds fighting gravity, hypoxia, thirst and hunger during long-distance, frequently sub-zero, non-stop migration. The pecten may help cope with energy and nutrient needs under extreme conditions, by a marginal but critical, melanin-initiated conversion of light to metabolic energy, coupled to local metabolite recycling. Similarly in Central Africa, reduction in body hair and melanin increase may also have lead to 'photomelanometabolism' which, though small scale/ unit body area, in total may have enabled a sharply increased development of the energy-hungry cortex and enhanced human survival generally. Animal inability to utilize light energy directly has been traditionally assumed. Melanin and the pecten may have unexpected lessons also for human physiology

  6. The relationship between the hepatitis B virus base core and precore/core promoter mutations and the development of cirrhotic hepatocellular carcinoma and noncirrhotic hepatocellular carcinoma

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    徐尧江

    2013-01-01

    Objective To investigate the mutations of basal core promoter(BCP) and precore(PreC) region of hepatitis B virus(HBV) and the association with the development of hepatocellular carcinoma in patients with chronic HBV infection. Methods Totally 381 untreated HBV patients were recruited from the Department of Infectious

  7. Thermohydrogel Containing Melanin for Photothermal Cancer Therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Miri; Kim, Hyun Soo; Kim, Min Ah; Ryu, Hyanghwa; Jeong, Hwan-Jeong; Lee, Chang-Moon

    2016-12-01

    Melanin is an effective absorber of light and can extend to near infrared (NIR) regions. In this study, a natural melanin is presented as a photothermal therapeutic agent (PTA) because it provides a good photothermal conversion efficiency, shows biodegradability, and does not induce long-term toxicity during retention in vivo. Poloxamer solution containing melanin (Pol-Mel) does not show any precipitation and shows sol-gel transition at body temperature. After irradiation from 808 nm NIR laser at 1.5 W cm(-2) for 3 min, the photothermal conversion efficiency of Pol-Mel is enough to kill cancer cells in vitro and in vivo. The tumor growth of mice bearing CT26 tumors treated with Pol-Mel injection and laser irradiation is suppressed completely without recurrence postirradiation. All these results indicate that Pol-Mel can become an attractive PTA for photothermal cancer therapy.

  8. Inhibitory Effect of Arctigenin from Fructus Arctii Extract on Melanin Synthesis via Repression of Tyrosinase Expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Hwayong; Song, Kwang Hoon; Jung, Pil Mun; Kim, Ji-Eun; Ro, Hyunju; Kim, Mi Yoon; Ma, Jin Yeul

    2013-01-01

    To identify the active compound arctigenin in Fructus Arctii (dried seed of medicinal plant Arctium lappa) and to elucidate the inhibitory mechanism in melanogenesis, we analyzed melanin content and tyrosinase activity on B16BL6 murine melanoma and melan-A cell cultures. Water extracts of Fructus Arctii were shown to inhibit tyrosinase activity in vitro and melanin content in α -melanocyte stimulating hormone-stimulated cells to similar levels as the well-known kojic acid and arbutin, respectively. The active compound arctigenin of Fructus Arctii displayed little or no cytotoxicity at all concentrations examined and decreased the relative melanin content and tyrosinase activity in a dose-dependent manner. Melanogenic inhibitory activity was also identified in vivo with zebrafish embryo. To determine the mechanism of inhibition, the effects of arctigenin on tyrosinase gene expression and tyrosinase promoter activity were examined. Also in addition, in the signaling cascade, arctigenin dose dependently decreased the cAMP level and promoted the phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase. This result suggests that arctigenin downregulates cAMP and the tyrosinase enzyme through its gene promoter and subsequently upregulates extracellular signal-regulated kinase activity by increasing phosphorylation in the melanogenesis signaling pathway, which leads to a lower melanin content.

  9. Inhibitory Effect of Arctigenin from Fructus Arctii Extract on Melanin Synthesis via Repression of Tyrosinase Expression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Hwayong; Song, Kwang Hoon; Jung, Pil Mun; Kim, Ji-Eun; Kim, Mi Yoon; Ma, Jin Yeul

    2013-01-01

    To identify the active compound arctigenin in Fructus Arctii (dried seed of medicinal plant Arctium lappa) and to elucidate the inhibitory mechanism in melanogenesis, we analyzed melanin content and tyrosinase activity on B16BL6 murine melanoma and melan-A cell cultures. Water extracts of Fructus Arctii were shown to inhibit tyrosinase activity in vitro and melanin content in α-melanocyte stimulating hormone-stimulated cells to similar levels as the well-known kojic acid and arbutin, respectively. The active compound arctigenin of Fructus Arctii displayed little or no cytotoxicity at all concentrations examined and decreased the relative melanin content and tyrosinase activity in a dose-dependent manner. Melanogenic inhibitory activity was also identified in vivo with zebrafish embryo. To determine the mechanism of inhibition, the effects of arctigenin on tyrosinase gene expression and tyrosinase promoter activity were examined. Also in addition, in the signaling cascade, arctigenin dose dependently decreased the cAMP level and promoted the phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase. This result suggests that arctigenin downregulates cAMP and the tyrosinase enzyme through its gene promoter and subsequently upregulates extracellular signal-regulated kinase activity by increasing phosphorylation in the melanogenesis signaling pathway, which leads to a lower melanin content. PMID:23781272

  10. Inhibitory Effect of Arctigenin from Fructus Arctii Extract on Melanin Synthesis via Repression of Tyrosinase Expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hwayong Park

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available To identify the active compound arctigenin in Fructus Arctii (dried seed of medicinal plant Arctium lappa and to elucidate the inhibitory mechanism in melanogenesis, we analyzed melanin content and tyrosinase activity on B16BL6 murine melanoma and melan-A cell cultures. Water extracts of Fructus Arctii were shown to inhibit tyrosinase activity in vitro and melanin content in α-melanocyte stimulating hormone-stimulated cells to similar levels as the well-known kojic acid and arbutin, respectively. The active compound arctigenin of Fructus Arctii displayed little or no cytotoxicity at all concentrations examined and decreased the relative melanin content and tyrosinase activity in a dose-dependent manner. Melanogenic inhibitory activity was also identified in vivo with zebrafish embryo. To determine the mechanism of inhibition, the effects of arctigenin on tyrosinase gene expression and tyrosinase promoter activity were examined. Also in addition, in the signaling cascade, arctigenin dose dependently decreased the cAMP level and promoted the phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase. This result suggests that arctigenin downregulates cAMP and the tyrosinase enzyme through its gene promoter and subsequently upregulates extracellular signal-regulated kinase activity by increasing phosphorylation in the melanogenesis signaling pathway, which leads to a lower melanin content.

  11. Exceptional expansion and conservation of a CT-repeat complex in the core promoter of PAXBP1 in primates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohammadparast, Saeid; Bayat, Hadi; Biglarian, Akbar; Ohadi, Mina

    2014-08-01

    Adaptive evolution may be linked with the genomic distribution and function of short tandem repeats (STRs). Proximity of the core promoter STRs to the +1 transcription start site (TSS), and their mutable nature are characteristics that highlight those STRs as a novel source of interspecies variation. The PAXBP1 gene (alternatively known as GCFC1) core promoter contains the longest STR identified in a Homo sapiens gene core promoter. Indeed, this core promoter is a stretch of four consecutive CT-STRs. In the current study, we used the Ensembl, NCBI, and UCSC databases to analyze the evolutionary trend and functional implication of this CT-STR complex in six major lineages across vertebrates, including primates, non-primate mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fish. We observed exceptional expansion (≥4-repeats) and conservation of this CT-STR complex across primates, except prosimians, Microcebus murinus and Otolemur garnettii (Fisher exact Pprimate lineages. Different length alleles across the PAXBP1 core promoter CT-STRs significantly altered gene expression in vitro (Pprimates and non-primates. To our knowledge, this is the first instance of expansion and conservation of a STR complex co-occurring specifically with the primate lineage.

  12. Optimization of competitively differentiated polymerase chain reaction in detection of HBV basal core promoter mutation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xiao-Mou Peng; Lin Gu; Xue-Juan Chen; Jian-Guo Li; Yang-Su Huang; Zhi-Liang Gao

    2005-01-01

    AIM: To improve competitively differentiated polymerase chain reaction (CD-PCR) in detection of HBV basal core promoter mutation.METHODS: Recombinant plasmid of double point mutation A1762T/G1764A in basal core promoter of HBV constructed by site-directed mutagenesis was used as mutant control.To reveal the deficiency mechanism of CD-PCR, relationship between the circle number of PCR and the increased speed of products of each competitive primer was comparatively studied. Diversified amount of dNTPs and mutual primer of the competitive primers were tried to optimize CDPCR. Optimized CD-PCR was evaluated by detecting A1762T/G1764A mutation in recombinant plasmids and clinical sera from patients with HBV infection. RESULTS: The deficiency mechanism of CD-PCR was that the products of mismatched competitive primer grew fast when the amplification of matched primer entered into plateau stage, which led to decrease in or disappearance of the difference in the amount of their products. This phenomenon could be eliminated by reducing dNTPs to10 μmol/L and mutual primer to about 100 nmol/L. Optimized CD-PCR could detect both mutant and wild strain indepe ndent of the amount of templates and the number of PCRcycles. Its detection limit was 103 copies/mL, about 50 copies/reaction. About 10% of mutant DNAs among wild type DNAs could be detected. A1762T/G1764A mutant was detected in 41.8% (51/122) of patients with HBV infection, but not detected in controls with negative HBsAg. CONCLUSION: Optimized CD-PCR can detect mutation independent of the amount of initial templates and the number of PCR cycles.

  13. Evidence for a Melanin Cell Wall Component in Pneumocystis carinii

    OpenAIRE

    Icenhour, Crystal R.; Kottom, Theodore J.; Limper, Andrew H

    2003-01-01

    Fluorescein isothiocyanate-labeled monoclonal antibodies specific for fungal melanin were used in this study to visualize melanin-like components of the Pneumocystis carinii cell wall. A colorimetric enzyme assay confirmed these findings. This is the first report of melanin-like pigments in Pneumocystis.

  14. CORE

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Krigslund, Jeppe; Hansen, Jonas; Hundebøll, Martin

    2013-01-01

    different flows. Instead of maintaining these approaches separate, we propose a protocol (CORE) that brings together these coding mechanisms. Our protocol uses random linear network coding (RLNC) for intra- session coding but allows nodes in the network to setup inter- session coding regions where flows...... intersect. Routes for unicast sessions are agnostic to other sessions and setup beforehand, CORE will then discover and exploit intersecting routes. Our approach allows the inter-session regions to leverage RLNC to compensate for losses or failures in the overhearing or transmitting process. Thus, we...... increase the benefits of XORing by exploiting the underlying RLNC structure of individual flows. This goes beyond providing additional reliability to each individual session and beyond exploiting coding opportunistically. Our numerical results show that CORE outperforms both forwarding and COPE...

  15. CORE

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Krigslund, Jeppe; Hansen, Jonas; Hundebøll, Martin

    2013-01-01

    different flows. Instead of maintaining these approaches separate, we propose a protocol (CORE) that brings together these coding mechanisms. Our protocol uses random linear network coding (RLNC) for intra- session coding but allows nodes in the network to setup inter- session coding regions where flows...... intersect. Routes for unicast sessions are agnostic to other sessions and setup beforehand, CORE will then discover and exploit intersecting routes. Our approach allows the inter-session regions to leverage RLNC to compensate for losses or failures in the overhearing or transmitting process. Thus, we...... increase the benefits of XORing by exploiting the underlying RLNC structure of individual flows. This goes beyond providing additional reliability to each individual session and beyond exploiting coding opportunistically. Our numerical results show that CORE outperforms both forwarding and COPE...

  16. Melanin as an active layer in biosensors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Piacenti da Silva, Marina, E-mail: marinaness@yahoo.com; Congiu, Mirko, E-mail: congiumat@gmail.com; Oliveira Graeff, Carlos Frederico de, E-mail: graeff@fc.unesp.br [Department of Physics, Faculty of Sciences - UNESP, Bauru, SP (Brazil); Fernandes, Jéssica Colnaghi, E-mail: jeziga-cf@yahoo.com.br; Biziak de Figueiredo, Natália, E-mail: natbiziak@yahoo.com.br; Mulato, Marcelo, E-mail: mmulato@ffclrp.usp.br [Department of Physics, Faculty of Philosophy, Science and Letters at Ribeirão Preto, University of São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, SP (Brazil)

    2014-03-15

    The development of pH sensors is of great interest due to its extensive application in several areas such as industrial processes, biochemistry and particularly medical diagnostics. In this study, the pH sensing properties of an extended gate field effect transistor (EGFET) based on melanin thin films as active layer are investigated and the physical mechanisms related to the device operation are discussed. Thin films were produced from different melanin precursors on indium tin oxide (ITO) and gold substrates and were investigated by Atomic Force Microscopy and Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy. Experiments were performed in the pH range from 2 to 12. EGFETs with melanin deposited on ITO and on gold substrates showed sensitivities ranging from 31.3 mV/pH to 48.9 mV/pH, depending on the melanin precursor and the substrate used. The pH detection is associated with specific binding sites in its structure, hydroxyl groups and quinone imine.

  17. Melanin biosynthesis pathway in Agaricus bisporus mushrooms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weijn, A.; Bastiaan-Net, S.; Wichers, H.J.; Mes, J.J.

    2013-01-01

    With the full genome sequence of Agaricus bisporus available, it was possible to investigate the genes involved in the melanin biosynthesis pathway of button mushrooms. Based on different BLAST and alignments, genes were identified in the genome which are postulated to be involved in this pathway.

  18. Melanin as an active layer in biosensors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marina Piacenti da Silva

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The development of pH sensors is of great interest due to its extensive application in several areas such as industrial processes, biochemistry and particularly medical diagnostics. In this study, the pH sensing properties of an extended gate field effect transistor (EGFET based on melanin thin films as active layer are investigated and the physical mechanisms related to the device operation are discussed. Thin films were produced from different melanin precursors on indium tin oxide (ITO and gold substrates and were investigated by Atomic Force Microscopy and Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy. Experiments were performed in the pH range from 2 to 12. EGFETs with melanin deposited on ITO and on gold substrates showed sensitivities ranging from 31.3 mV/pH to 48.9 mV/pH, depending on the melanin precursor and the substrate used. The pH detection is associated with specific binding sites in its structure, hydroxyl groups and quinone imine.

  19. Melanin as an active layer in biosensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piacenti da Silva, Marina; Fernandes, Jéssica Colnaghi; de Figueiredo, Natália Biziak; Congiu, Mirko; Mulato, Marcelo; de Oliveira Graeff, Carlos Frederico

    2014-03-01

    The development of pH sensors is of great interest due to its extensive application in several areas such as industrial processes, biochemistry and particularly medical diagnostics. In this study, the pH sensing properties of an extended gate field effect transistor (EGFET) based on melanin thin films as active layer are investigated and the physical mechanisms related to the device operation are discussed. Thin films were produced from different melanin precursors on indium tin oxide (ITO) and gold substrates and were investigated by Atomic Force Microscopy and Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy. Experiments were performed in the pH range from 2 to 12. EGFETs with melanin deposited on ITO and on gold substrates showed sensitivities ranging from 31.3 mV/pH to 48.9 mV/pH, depending on the melanin precursor and the substrate used. The pH detection is associated with specific binding sites in its structure, hydroxyl groups and quinone imine.

  20. Melanin: A scavenger in gingival inflammation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S Nilima

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: One of the major direct or indirect targets of ultraviolet exposure of skin is the melanocyte or the melanin -forming cell. Epidermal melanocytes act as a trap for free radicals. Based on the protective role of melanocytes in medical literature, the role of melanin pigmentation in gingiva needs to be elucidated. Periodontal pathogens and their products demonstrate the ability to induce the generation of reactive oxygen species. Hence purpose of this study was to unravel the protective role of melanin (if any against the gingival inflammation. Materials and Methods: A total of 80 subjects; 20 in each group were selected. The selection of subjects regarding gingival pigmentation was based on Dummett′s scoring criteria 0, 3. A complete medical, dental history and an informed consent were obtained from the patients. After evaluation of clinical parameters the GCF was collected using microcapillary pipettes at the selected sites. IL-1β levels were quantitated using ELISA. Results: In non-pigmented healthy and gingivitis groups, there was a positive correlation between plaque index, gingival index and bleeding index versus IL-1β level: indicating an increase in the biochemical mediator of inflammation corresponding to an increase in the clinical parameters of inflammation. Also a positive correlation was found between the gingival index and bleeding index versus the IL-1β levels in the pigmented healthy group. The pigmented gingivitis groups showed a negative correlation between the plaque index, gingival index and bleeding index. Conclusions: The clinical markers of inflammation such as gingival index, bleeding index was of low numerical value in pigmented group than in the non-pigmented group, supposedly due to the protective action of melanin. The negative correlation of clinical markers of inflammation to the IL-1β levels in the pigmented gingivitis group could possibly be attributed to the protective role of melanins.

  1. Epidermal melanin absorption in human skin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norvang Nilsen, Lill T.; Fiskerstrand, Elisanne J.; Nelson, J. Stuart; Berns, Michael W.; Svaasand, Lars O.

    1996-01-01

    The principle of laser induced selective photothermolysis is to induced thermal damage to specific targets in such a manner that the temperature of the surrounding tissue is maintained below the threshold for thermal damage. The selectivity is obtained by selection of a proper wavelength and pulse duration. The technique is presently being used in the clinic for removal of port-wine stains. The presence of melanin in the epidermal layer can represent a limitation to the selectivity. Melanin absorption drops off significantly with increasing wavelength, but is significant in the entire wavelength region where the blood absorption is high. Treatment of port-wine stain in patients with high skin pigmentation may therefore give overheating of the epidermis, resulting in epidermal necrosis. Melanosomal heating is dependent on the energy and duration of the laser pulse. The heating mechanism for time scales less than typically 1 microsecond(s) corresponds to a transient local heating of the individual melanosomes. For larger time scales, heat diffusion out of the melanosomes become of increased importance, and the temperature distribution will reach a local steady state condition after typically 10 microsecond(s) . For even longer pulse duration, heat diffusing from neighboring melanosomes becomes important, and the temperature rise in a time scale from 100 - 500 microsecond(s) is dominated by this mechanism. The epidermal heating during the typical 450 microsecond(s) pulse used for therapy is thus dependent on the average epidermal melanin content rather than on the absorption coefficient of the individual melanosomes. This study will present in vivo measurements of the epidermal melanin absorption of human skin when exposed to short laser pulses (< 0.1 microsecond(s) ) from a Q-switched ruby laser and with long laser pulses (approximately 500 microsecond(s) ) from a free-running ruby laser or a long pulse length flashlamp pumped dye laser. The epidermal melanin

  2. PROFILE VICTIMS OF NOTIFIED IN CORE AND VIOLENCE PREVENTION TO HEALTH PROMOTION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juliete Tasca

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Study aiming to identify the profile of the victims reported in the core of violence prevention and health promotion, in a city in the extreme south of Santa Catarina. Research of quali-quantitative methodological approach, descriptive-exploratory documentary and field. The survey was conducted from the analysis of notifications from SINAN-information system of reportable diseases-from 2010 to October 2012 and realization of interview with the nurse program participant. In the data analysis phase, the information were quantified through Microsoft Office Excel and presented by means of quantitative analysis. Organized analysis and interpretation of qualitative data from the categorization of data. In relation to the types of violence, 40.92 was characterised with physical violence; 16.47 auto injury caused; 13.07 neglect and abandonment; 10.29 disability or mental disorder; 6.71; moral psychological violence; 6.07 violence with a firearm; 3.24 sexual violence; 1.81 violence related to work; 1.02 torture; 0.26 legal intervention; 0.07 sexual O perfil das vítimas da violência exploitation; 0.07 trafficking human beings. The violence is considered a public health problem of multiple dimensions requiring increasingly in-depth studies and public policies involving beyond theme of violence, security, education and culture for peace.

  3. Profile victims of notified in Core and Violence Prevention to Health Promotion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juliete Tasca

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Study aiming to identify the profile of the victims reported in the core of violence prevention and health promotion, in a city in the extreme south of Santa Catarina. Research of quali-quantitative methodological approach, descriptive-exploratory documentary and field. The survey was conducted from the analysis of notifications from SINAN-information system of reportable diseases-from 2010 to October 2012 and realization of interview with the nurse program participant. In the data analysis phase, the information were quantified through Microsoft Office Excel and presented by means of quantitative analysis. Organized analysis and interpretation of qualitative data from the categorization of data. In relation to the types of violence, 40.92 was characterised with physical violence; 16.47 auto injury caused; 13.07 neglect and abandonment; 10.29 disability or mental disorder; 6.71; moral psychological violence; 6.07 violence with a firearm; 3.24 sexual violence; 1.81 violence related to work; 1.02 torture; 0.26 legal intervention; 0.07 sexual exploitation; 0.07 trafficking human beings. The violence is considered a public health problem of multiple dimensions requiring increasingly in-depth studies and public policies involving beyond theme of violence, security, education and culture for peace.

  4. Melanins and melanogenesis: methods, standards, protocols.

    Science.gov (United States)

    d'Ischia, Marco; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Napolitano, Alessandra; Briganti, Stefania; Garcia-Borron, José-Carlos; Kovacs, Daniela; Meredith, Paul; Pezzella, Alessandro; Picardo, Mauro; Sarna, Tadeusz; Simon, John D; Ito, Shosuke

    2013-09-01

    Despite considerable advances in the past decade, melanin research still suffers from the lack of universally accepted and shared nomenclature, methodologies, and structural models. This paper stems from the joint efforts of chemists, biochemists, physicists, biologists, and physicians with recognized and consolidated expertise in the field of melanins and melanogenesis, who critically reviewed and experimentally revisited methods, standards, and protocols to provide for the first time a consensus set of recommended procedures to be adopted and shared by researchers involved in pigment cell research. The aim of the paper was to define an unprecedented frame of reference built on cutting-edge knowledge and state-of-the-art methodology, to enable reliable comparison of results among laboratories and new progress in the field based on standardized methods and shared information.

  5. Induction of melanin biosynthesis in Vibrio cholerae.

    OpenAIRE

    Coyne, V E; al-Harthi, L

    1992-01-01

    Vibrio cholerae synthesized the pigment melanin in response to specific physiological conditions that were stressful to the bacterium. Pigmentation was induced when V. cholerae was subjected to hyperosmotic stress in conjunction with elevated growth temperatures (above 30 degrees C). The salt concentration tolerated by V. cholerae was lowered by additional abiotic factors such as acidic starting pH of the growth medium and limitation of organic nutrients. Although the amount of toxin detected...

  6. Photochemical Synthesis of Au@Pd Core-Shell Nanoparticles for Methanol Oxidation Reaction: the Promotional Effect of the Au Core

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dong Yingnan

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available A novel method for synthesizing Au@Pd core-shell nanoparticles was proposed based on photochemistry. By irradiating the mixture of Au (III and Pd (II ions using ultraviolet light, the Au@Pd core-shell nanoparticles were prepared. The size of the nanoparticles and the thickness of the Pd shell could be efficiently adjusted by changing the molar ratio of Au (III to Pd (II ion. In this way, nanoparticles with diameter in the range of 5.6~4.6 nm were obtained. The core-shell structure of the synthesized nanoparticles was showed by the characterization using UV-Vis, TEM/HR-TEM and XPS. The paper investigated the electrocatalysis performance of Au@Pd nanoparticles in the methanol catalytic oxidation reaction, as well as the electron donating effect of Au core to Pd shell and the promotion of this effect on the catalytic activity of Pd shell. The experimental results provided reference for the development of non-platinum catalysts of low-temperature fuel cell anode.

  7. Prevalence of the initiator over the TATA box in human and yeast genes and identification of DNA motifs enriched in human TATA-less core promoters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Chuhu; Bolotin, Eugene; Jiang, Tao; Sladek, Frances M; Martinez, Ernest

    2007-03-01

    The core promoter of eukaryotic genes is the minimal DNA region that recruits the basal transcription machinery to direct efficient and accurate transcription initiation. The fraction of human and yeast genes that contain specific core promoter elements such as the TATA box and the initiator (INR) remains unclear and core promoter motifs specific for TATA-less genes remain to be identified. Here, we present genome-scale computational analyses indicating that approximately 76% of human core promoters lack TATA-like elements, have a high GC content, and are enriched in Sp1-binding sites. We further identify two motifs - M3 (SCGGAAGY) and M22 (TGCGCANK) - that occur preferentially in human TATA-less core promoters. About 24% of human genes have a TATA-like element and their promoters are generally AT-rich; however, only approximately 10% of these TATA-containing promoters have the canonical TATA box (TATAWAWR). In contrast, approximately 46% of human core promoters contain the consensus INR (YYANWYY) and approximately 30% are INR-containing TATA-less genes. Significantly, approximately 46% of human promoters lack both TATA-like and consensus INR elements. Surprisingly, mammalian-type INR sequences are present - and tend to cluster - in the transcription start site (TSS) region of approximately 40% of yeast core promoters and the frequency of specific core promoter types appears to be conserved in yeast and human genomes. Gene Ontology analyses reveal that TATA-less genes in humans, as in yeast, are frequently involved in basic "housekeeping" processes, while TATA-containing genes are more often highly regulated, such as by biotic or stress stimuli. These results reveal unexpected similarities in the occurrence of specific core promoter types and in their associated biological processes in yeast and humans and point to novel vertebrate-specific DNA motifs that might play a selective role in TATA-independent transcription.

  8. Biochemical degradation of soil humic acids and fungal melanins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zavgorodnyaya, Y.A.; Demin, V.V.; Kurakov, A.V. [Moscow MV Lomonosov State University, Moscow (Russian Federation). Dept. of Soil Science

    2002-07-01

    Studies were conducted to compare properties and biodegradation of fungal melanins from Aspergillus niger and Cladosporium cladosporiodes with those of humic acids from soils and brown coal. Compared to the humic acids the fungal melanins contained more functional groups, were less hydrophilic and had relatively high molecular weights. Under the conditions of incubation the melanins were found to be more readily degradable than the humic acids studied. The changes in elemental composition, optical parameters and the decrease of molecular weight, observed for both fungal melanins during degradation, made them more similar to soil humic acids.

  9. Dopamine-melanin nanofilms for biomimetic structural coloration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Tong-Fei; Hong, Jong-Dal

    2015-02-09

    This article describes the formation of dopamine-melanin thin films (50-200 nm thick) at an air/dopamine solution interface under static conditions. Beneath these films, spherical melanin granules formed in bulk liquid phase. The thickness of dopamine-melanin films at the interface relied mainly on the concentration of dopamine solution and the reaction time. A plausible mechanism underlining dopamine-melanin thin film formation was proposed based on the hydrophobicity of dopamine-melanin aggregates and the mass transport of the aggregates to the air/solution interface as a result of convective flow. The thickness of the interfacial films increased linearly with the dopamine concentration and the reaction time. The dopamine-melanin thin film and granules (formed in bulk liquid phase) with a double-layered structure were transferred onto a solid substrate to mimic the (keratin layer)/(melanin granules) structure present in bird plumage, thereby preparing full dopamine-melanin thin-film reflectors. The reflected color of the thin-film reflectors depended on the film thickness, which could be adjusted according to the dopamine concentration. The reflectance of the resulted reflectors exhibited a maximal reflectance value of 8-11%, comparable to that of bird plumage (∼11%). This study provides a useful, simple, and low-cost approach to the fabrication of biomimetic thin-film reflectors using full dopamine-melanin materials.

  10. Effect of UV irradiation on free radicals in synthetic melanin and melanin biopolymer from Sepia officinalis – EPR examination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zdybel Magdalena

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Free radicals in synthetic melanin and melanin from Sepia officinalis were studied by electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR spectroscopy. The effect of time of ultraviolet (UV irradiation on free radicals in these melanins was tested. The samples were exposed to UV during 15, 30, and 60 minutes. EPR spectra were measured with microwaves from an X-band (9.3 GHz in the range of microwave power of 2.2–70 mW. The performed EPR examinations indicate that high concentrations (~1021–1022 spin/g of o-semiquinone free radicals with g factors of 2.0039–2.0045 exist in all the tested samples. For nonirradiated samples, free radical concentration was higher in natural melanin than in synthetic melanin. UV irradiation caused the increase of free radical concentrations in synthetic melanin samples and this effect depends on the time of irradiation. The largest free radical formation in the both melanins was obtained for 60 min of UV irradiation. Free radical concentrations after the UV irradiation of melanins during 30 min were lower than during irradiation by 15 min, and probably this effect was the result of recombination of the radiatively formed free radicals. EPR lines of the tested samples broadened with increasing microwave power, so these lines were homogeneously broadened. The two types of melanins differed in the time of spin-lattice relaxation processes. Slower spin-lattice relaxation processes exist in melanin from Sepia officinalis than in synthetic melanin. UV irradiation did not change the time of spin-lattice relaxation processes in the tested melanins. The performed studies confirmed the usefulness of EPR spectroscopy in cosmetology and medicine.

  11. Promoting Research as a Core Value in Master's-Level Counselor Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huber, Charles H.; Savage, Todd A.

    2009-01-01

    Theory, practice, and research are all espoused to be core values within counselor education. The authors assert that research needs to become directly associated with theory and practice for it to be a concurrent core value. "Action research" is most simply defined as a form of research that is practitioner based. The authors propose infusing…

  12. Hepatitis B virus subgenotypes and basal core promoter mutations in Indonesia

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Andi Utama; Sigit Purwantomo; Marlinang Diarta Siburian; Rama Dhenni; Rino Alvani Gani; Irsan Hasan; Andri Sanityoso; Upik Anderiani Miskad; Fardah Akil; Irawan Yusuf; Wenny Astuti Achwan; Soewignjo Soemohardjo; Syafruddin AR Lelosutan; Ruswhandi Martamala; Benyamin Lukito; Unggul Budihusodo; Laurentius Adrianus Lesmana; Ali Sulaiman; Susan Tai

    2009-01-01

    AIM:To identify the distribution of hepatitis B virus(HBV) subgenotype and basal core promoter(BCP) mutations among patients with HBV-associated liver disease in Indonesia.METHODS:Patients with chronic hepatitis (CH,n=61),liver cirrhosis (LC,n = 62),and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC,n = 48) were included in this study.HBV subgenotype was identified based on S or preS gene sequence,and mutations in the HBx gene including the overlapping BCP region were examined by direct sequencing.RESULTS:HBV genotype B (subgenotypes B2,B3,B4,B5 and B7) the major genotype in the samples,accounted for 75.4%,71.0% and 75.0% of CH,LC and HCC patients,respectively,while the genotype C(subgenotypes C1,C2 and C3) was detected in 24.6%,29.0%,and 25.0% of CH,LC,and HCC patients,respectively.Subgenotypes B3 (84.9%) and C1 (82.2%) were the main subgenotype in HBV genotype B and C,respectively.Serotype adw2 (84.9%) and adrq+(89.4%) were the most prevalent in HBV genotype B and C,respectively.Double mutation (A1762T/G1764A) in the BCP was significantly higher in LC (59.7%) and HCC (54.2%) than in CH (19.7%),suggesting that this mutation was associated with severity of liver disease.The T1753V was also higher in LC (46.8%),but lower in HCC (22.9%) and CH (18.0%),suggesting that this mutation may be an indicator of cirrhosis.CONCLUSION:HBV genotype B/B3 and C/C1 are the major genotypes in Indonesia.Mutations in BCP,such as A1762T/G1764A and T1753V,might have an association with manifestations of liver disease.

  13. Aspergillus fumigatus conidial melanin modulates host cytokine response

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    L.Y.A. Chai (Louis); M.G. Netea (Mihai); J. Sugui (Janyce); A.G. Vonk (Alieke); W.W.J. van de Sande (Wendy); A. Warris (Adilia); K.J. Kwon-Chung (Kyung); B. Jan Kullberg (Bart)

    2010-01-01

    textabstractMelanin biopigments have been linked to fungal virulence. Aspergillus fumigatus conidia are melanised and are weakly immunogenic. We show that melanin pigments on the surface of resting Aspergillus fumigatus conidia may serve to mask pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs)-induced

  14. Aspergillus fumigatus conidial melanin modulates host cytokine response.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chai, L.; Netea, M.G.; Sugui, J.; Vonk, A.G.; Sande, W.W. van de; Warris, A.; Kwon-Chung, K.J.; Kullberg, B.J.

    2010-01-01

    Melanin biopigments have been linked to fungal virulence. Aspergillus fumigatus conidia are melanised and are weakly immunogenic. We show that melanin pigments on the surface of resting Aspergillus fumigatus conidia may serve to mask pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs)-induced cytokine re

  15. Aspergillus fumigatus conidial melanin modulates host cytokine response.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chai, L.; Netea, M.G.; Sugui, J.; Vonk, A.G.; Sande, W.W. van de; Warris, A.; Kwon-Chung, K.J.; Kullberg, B.J.

    2010-01-01

    Melanin biopigments have been linked to fungal virulence. Aspergillus fumigatus conidia are melanised and are weakly immunogenic. We show that melanin pigments on the surface of resting Aspergillus fumigatus conidia may serve to mask pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs)-induced cytokine

  16. Aspergillus fumigatus conidial melanin modulates host cytokine response

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    L.Y.A. Chai (Louis); M.G. Netea (Mihai); J. Sugui (Janyce); A.G. Vonk (Alieke); W.W.J. van de Sande (Wendy); A. Warris (Adilia); K.J. Kwon-Chung (Kyung); B. Jan Kullberg (Bart)

    2010-01-01

    textabstractMelanin biopigments have been linked to fungal virulence. Aspergillus fumigatus conidia are melanised and are weakly immunogenic. We show that melanin pigments on the surface of resting Aspergillus fumigatus conidia may serve to mask pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs)-induced

  17. Interocular agreement in melanin and macular pigment optical density.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kanis, M.J.; Berendschot, T.T.J.M.; van Norren, D.

    2007-01-01

    Macular pigment (MP) and melanin possibly protect the macular area by absorbing blue light and acting as antioxidants. Because little is known about the interocular correlation of melanin, we determined its optical density (MOD) in both eyes of healthy subjects using fundus reflectometry. The measur

  18. Natural melanin composites by layer-by-layer assembly

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eom, Taesik; Shim, Bong Sub

    2015-04-01

    Melanin is an electrically conductive and biocompatible material, because their conjugated backbone structures provide conducting pathways from human skin, eyes, brain, and beyond. So there is a potential of using as materials for the neural interfaces and the implantable devices. Extracted from Sepia officinalis ink, our natural melanin was uniformly dispersed in mostly polar solvents such as water and alcohols. Then, the dispersed melanin was further fabricated to nano-thin layered composites by the layer-by-layer (LBL) assembly technique. Combined with polyvinyl alcohol (PVA), the melanin nanoparticles behave as an LBL counterpart to from finely tuned nanostructured films. The LBL process can adjust the smart performances of the composites by varying the layering conditions and sandwich thickness. We further demonstrated the melanin loading degree of stacked layers, combination nanostructures, electrical properties, and biocompatibility of the resulting composites by UV-vis spectrophotometer, scanning electron microscope (SEM), multimeter, and in-vitro cell test of PC12, respectively.

  19. Electronic structure calculations of ESR parameters of melanin units.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batagin-Neto, Augusto; Bronze-Uhle, Erika Soares; Graeff, Carlos Frederico de Oliveira

    2015-03-21

    Melanins represent an important class of natural pigments present in plants and animals that are currently considered to be promising materials for applications in optic and electronic devices. Despite their interesting properties, some of the basic features of melanins are not satisfactorily understood, including the origin of their intrinsic paramagnetism. A number of experiments have been performed to investigate the electron spin resonance (ESR) response of melanin derivatives, but until now, there has been no consensus regarding the real structure of the paramagnetic centers involved. In this work, we have employed electronic structure calculations to evaluate the ESR parameters of distinct melanin monomers and dimers in order to identify the possible structures associated with unpaired spins in this biopolymer. The g-factors and hyperfine constants of the cationic, anionic and radicalar structures were investigated. The results confirm the existence of at least two distinct paramagnetic centers in melanin structure, identifying the chemical species associated with them and their roles in electrical conductivity.

  20. Mutational analysis of the UCP2 core promoter and relationships of variants with obesity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dalgaard, Louise T; Andersen, Gitte; Larsen, Lesli H;

    2003-01-01

    To identify polymorphisms in the human uncoupling protein 2 gene (UCP2) promoter and to investigate whether these were associated with obesity or weight gain.......To identify polymorphisms in the human uncoupling protein 2 gene (UCP2) promoter and to investigate whether these were associated with obesity or weight gain....

  1. Pigment Melanin: Pattern for Iris Recognition

    CERN Document Server

    Hosseini, Mahdi S; Soltanian-Zadeh, Hamid

    2009-01-01

    Recognition of iris based on Visible Light (VL) imaging is a difficult problem because of the light reflection from the cornea. Nonetheless, pigment melanin provides a rich feature source in VL, unavailable in Near-Infrared (NIR) imaging. This is due to biological spectroscopy of eumelanin, a chemical not stimulated in NIR. In this case, a plausible solution to observe such patterns may be provided by an adaptive procedure using a variational technique on the image histogram. To describe the patterns, a shape analysis method is used to derive feature-code for each subject. An important question is how much the melanin patterns, extracted from VL, are independent of iris texture in NIR. With this question in mind, the present investigation proposes fusion of features extracted from NIR and VL to boost the recognition performance. We have collected our own database (UTIRIS) consisting of both NIR and VL images of 158 eyes of 79 individuals. This investigation demonstrates that the proposed algorithm is highly s...

  2. Promoting Access to Common Core Mathematics for Students with Severe Disabilities through Mathematical Problem Solving

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spooner, Fred; Saunders, Alicia; Root, Jenny; Brosh, Chelsi

    2017-01-01

    There is a need to teach the pivotal skill of mathematical problem solving to students with severe disabilities, moving beyond basic skills like computation to higher level thinking skills. Problem solving is emphasized as a Standard for Mathematical Practice in the Common Core State Standards across grade levels. This article describes a…

  3. Promoting Utilization of Saccharum spp. Genetic Resources through Genetic Diversity Analysis and Core Collection Construction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pathak, Bhuvan; Ayala-Silva, Tomas; Yang, Xiping; Todd, James; Glynn, Neil C.; Kuhn, David N.; Glaz, Barry; Gilbert, Robert A.; Comstock, Jack C.; Wang, Jianping

    2014-01-01

    Sugarcane (Saccharum spp.) and other members of Saccharum spp. are attractive biofuel feedstocks. One of the two World Collections of Sugarcane and Related Grasses (WCSRG) is in Miami, FL. This WCSRG has 1002 accessions, presumably with valuable alleles for biomass, other important agronomic traits, and stress resistance. However, the WCSRG has not been fully exploited by breeders due to its lack of characterization and unmanageable population. In order to optimize the use of this genetic resource, we aim to 1) genotypically evaluate all the 1002 accessions to understand its genetic diversity and population structure and 2) form a core collection, which captures most of the genetic diversity in the WCSRG. We screened 36 microsatellite markers on 1002 genotypes and recorded 209 alleles. Genetic diversity of the WCSRG ranged from 0 to 0.5 with an average of 0.304. The population structure analysis and principal coordinate analysis revealed three clusters with all S. spontaneum in one cluster, S. officinarum and S. hybrids in the second cluster and mostly non-Saccharum spp. in the third cluster. A core collection of 300 accessions was identified which captured the maximum genetic diversity of the entire WCSRG which can be further exploited for sugarcane and energy cane breeding. Sugarcane and energy cane breeders can effectively utilize this core collection for cultivar improvement. Further, the core collection can provide resources for forming an association panel to evaluate the traits of agronomic and commercial importance. PMID:25333358

  4. Promoting utilization of Saccharum spp. genetic resources through genetic diversity analysis and core collection construction.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Spurthi N Nayak

    Full Text Available Sugarcane (Saccharum spp. and other members of Saccharum spp. are attractive biofuel feedstocks. One of the two World Collections of Sugarcane and Related Grasses (WCSRG is in Miami, FL. This WCSRG has 1002 accessions, presumably with valuable alleles for biomass, other important agronomic traits, and stress resistance. However, the WCSRG has not been fully exploited by breeders due to its lack of characterization and unmanageable population. In order to optimize the use of this genetic resource, we aim to 1 genotypically evaluate all the 1002 accessions to understand its genetic diversity and population structure and 2 form a core collection, which captures most of the genetic diversity in the WCSRG. We screened 36 microsatellite markers on 1002 genotypes and recorded 209 alleles. Genetic diversity of the WCSRG ranged from 0 to 0.5 with an average of 0.304. The population structure analysis and principal coordinate analysis revealed three clusters with all S. spontaneum in one cluster, S. officinarum and S. hybrids in the second cluster and mostly non-Saccharum spp. in the third cluster. A core collection of 300 accessions was identified which captured the maximum genetic diversity of the entire WCSRG which can be further exploited for sugarcane and energy cane breeding. Sugarcane and energy cane breeders can effectively utilize this core collection for cultivar improvement. Further, the core collection can provide resources for forming an association panel to evaluate the traits of agronomic and commercial importance.

  5. Promoting utilization of Saccharum spp. genetic resources through genetic diversity analysis and core collection construction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nayak, Spurthi N; Song, Jian; Villa, Andrea; Pathak, Bhuvan; Ayala-Silva, Tomas; Yang, Xiping; Todd, James; Glynn, Neil C; Kuhn, David N; Glaz, Barry; Gilbert, Robert A; Comstock, Jack C; Wang, Jianping

    2014-01-01

    Sugarcane (Saccharum spp.) and other members of Saccharum spp. are attractive biofuel feedstocks. One of the two World Collections of Sugarcane and Related Grasses (WCSRG) is in Miami, FL. This WCSRG has 1002 accessions, presumably with valuable alleles for biomass, other important agronomic traits, and stress resistance. However, the WCSRG has not been fully exploited by breeders due to its lack of characterization and unmanageable population. In order to optimize the use of this genetic resource, we aim to 1) genotypically evaluate all the 1002 accessions to understand its genetic diversity and population structure and 2) form a core collection, which captures most of the genetic diversity in the WCSRG. We screened 36 microsatellite markers on 1002 genotypes and recorded 209 alleles. Genetic diversity of the WCSRG ranged from 0 to 0.5 with an average of 0.304. The population structure analysis and principal coordinate analysis revealed three clusters with all S. spontaneum in one cluster, S. officinarum and S. hybrids in the second cluster and mostly non-Saccharum spp. in the third cluster. A core collection of 300 accessions was identified which captured the maximum genetic diversity of the entire WCSRG which can be further exploited for sugarcane and energy cane breeding. Sugarcane and energy cane breeders can effectively utilize this core collection for cultivar improvement. Further, the core collection can provide resources for forming an association panel to evaluate the traits of agronomic and commercial importance.

  6. UNAIDS ‘multiple sexual partners’ core indicator: promoting sexual networks to reduce potential biases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zacharie Tsala Dimbuene

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available UNAIDS proposed a set of core indicators for monitoring changes in the worldwide AIDS epidemic. This paper explores the validity and effectiveness of the ‘multiple sexual partners’ core indicator, which is only partially captured with current available data. The paper also suggests an innovative approach for collecting more informative data that can be used to provide an accurate measure of the UNAIDS's ‘multiple sexual partners’ core indicator. Specifically, the paper addresses three major limitations associated with the indicator when it is measured with respondents’ sexual behaviors. First, the indicator assumes that a person's risk of contracting HIV/AIDS/STIs is merely a function of his/her own sexual behavior. Second, the indicator does not account for a partner's sexual history, which is very important in assessing an individual's risk level. Finally, the 12-month period used to define a person's risks can be misleading, especially because HIV/AIDS theoretically has a period of latency longer than a year. The paper concludes that, programmatically, improvements in data collection are a top priority for reducing the observed bias in the ‘multiple sexual partners’ core indicator.

  7. Analysis of ultra-deep pyrosequencing and cloning based sequencing of the basic core promoter/precore/core region of hepatitis B virus using newly developed bioinformatics tools.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mukhlid Yousif

    Full Text Available AIMS: The aims of this study were to develop bioinformatics tools to explore ultra-deep pyrosequencing (UDPS data, to test these tools, and to use them to determine the optimum error threshold, and to compare results from UDPS and cloning based sequencing (CBS. METHODS: Four serum samples, infected with either genotype D or E, from HBeAg-positive and HBeAg-negative patients were randomly selected. UDPS and CBS were used to sequence the basic core promoter/precore region of HBV. Two online bioinformatics tools, the "Deep Threshold Tool" and the "Rosetta Tool" (http://hvdr.bioinf.wits.ac.za/tools/, were built to test and analyze the generated data. RESULTS: A total of 10952 reads were generated by UDPS on the 454 GS Junior platform. In the four samples, substitutions, detected at 0.5% threshold or above, were identified at 39 unique positions, 25 of which were non-synonymous mutations. Sample #2 (HBeAg-negative, genotype D had substitutions in 26 positions, followed by sample #1 (HBeAg-negative, genotype E in 12 positions, sample #3 (HBeAg-positive, genotype D in 7 positions and sample #4 (HBeAg-positive, genotype E in only four positions. The ratio of nucleotide substitutions between isolates from HBeAg-negative and HBeAg-positive patients was 3.5 ∶ 1. Compared to genotype E isolates, genotype D isolates showed greater variation in the X, basic core promoter/precore and core regions. Only 18 of the 39 positions identified by UDPS were detected by CBS, which detected 14 of the 25 non-synonymous mutations detected by UDPS. CONCLUSION: UDPS data should be approached with caution. Appropriate curation of read data is required prior to analysis, in order to clean the data and eliminate artefacts. CBS detected fewer than 50% of the substitutions detected by UDPS. Furthermore it is important that the appropriate consensus (reference sequence is used in order to identify variants correctly.

  8. Toward a detailed description of the thermally induced dynamics of the core promoter.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Boian S Alexandrov

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Establishing the general and promoter-specific mechanistic features of gene transcription initiation requires improved understanding of the sequence-dependent structural/dynamic features of promoter DNA. Experimental data suggest that a spontaneous dsDNA strand separation at the transcriptional start site is likely to be a requirement for transcription initiation in several promoters. Here, we use Langevin molecular dynamic simulations based on the Peyrard-Bishop-Dauxois nonlinear model of DNA (PBD LMD to analyze the strand separation (bubble dynamics of 80-bp-long promoter DNA sequences. We derive three dynamic criteria, bubble probability, bubble lifetime, and average strand separation, to characterize bubble formation at the transcriptional start sites of eight mammalian gene promoters. We observe that the most stable dsDNA openings do not necessarily coincide with the most probable openings and the highest average strand displacement, underscoring the advantages of proper molecular dynamic simulations. The dynamic profiles of the tested mammalian promoters differ significantly in overall profile and bubble probability, but the transcriptional start site is often distinguished by large (longer than 10 bp and long-lived transient openings in the double helix. In support of these results are our experimental transcription data demonstrating that an artificial bubble-containing DNA template is transcribed bidirectionally by human RNA polymerase alone in the absence of any other transcription factors.

  9. Precore/basal core promoter mutants and hepatitis B viral DNA levels as predictors for liver deaths and hepatocellular carcinoma

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Myron J Tong; Lawrence M Blatt; Jia-Horng Kao; Jason Tzuying Cheng; William G Corey

    2006-01-01

    AIM: To conduct a retrospective study in 400 chronic hepatitis B patients in order to identify hepatitis B viral factors associated with complications of liver disease or development of hepatocellular carcinoma.METHODS: The mean follow-up time was 83.6 ± 39.6mo. Alpha-fetoprotein test and abdominal ultrasound were used for cancer surveillance. Hepatitis B basal core promoter mutants, precore mutants, genotypes,hepatitis B viral DNA (HBV DNA) level and hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg) were measured. Univariate analysis and logistic regression were used to assess odds ratios for viral factors related to liver deaths and hepatocellular carcinoma development.RESULTS: During follow-up, 38 patients had liver deaths not related to hepatocellular carcinoma. On multivariate analysis, older age [odds ratio: 95.74 (12.13-891.31);P < 0.0001], male sex [odds ratio: 7.61 (2.20-47.95);P = 0.006], and higher log10 HBV DNA [odds ratio:4.69 (1.16-20.43); P < 0.0001] were independently predictive for these liver related deaths. Also, 31 patients developed hepatocellular carcinoma. Multivariate analysis showed that older age [odds ratio: 26.51 (2.36-381.47);P = 0.007], presence of precore mutants [odds ratio:4.23 (1.53-19.58); P = 0.02] and presence of basal core promoter mutants [odds ratio: 2.93 (1.24-7.57); P =0.02] were independent predictors for progression to hepatocellular carcinoma.CONCLUSION: Our results show that high levels of baseline serum HBV DNA are associated with nonhepatocellular carcinoma-related deaths of liver failure,while genetic mutations in the basal core promoter and precore regions are predictive for development of hepatocellular carcinoma.

  10. Regulation of gene expression in the protozoan parasite Entamoeba invadens: identification of core promoter elements and promoters with stage-specific expression patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manna, Dipak; Ehrenkaufer, Gretchen M; Singh, Upinder

    2014-10-01

    Developmental switching between life-cycle stages is a common feature among many pathogenic organisms. Entamoeba histolytica is an important human pathogen and is a leading parasitic cause of death globally. During its life cycle, Entamoeba converts between cysts (essential for disease transmission) and trophozoites (responsible for tissue invasion). Despite being central to its biology, the triggers that are involved in the developmental pathways of this parasite are not well understood. In order to define the transcriptional network associated with stage conversion we used Entamoeba invadens which serves as a model system for Entamoeba developmental biology, and performed RNA sequencing at different developmental time points. In this study RNA-Seq data was utilised to define basal transcriptional control elements as well as to identify promoters which regulate stage-specific gene expression patterns. We discovered that the 5' and 3' untranslated regions of E. invadens genes are short, a median of 20 nucleotides (nt) and 26 nt respectively. Bioinformatics analysis of DNA sequences proximate to the start and stop codons identified two conserved motifs: (i) E. invadens Core Promoter Motif - GAAC-Like (EiCPM-GL) (GAACTACAAA), and (ii) E. invadens 3'-U-Rich Motif (Ei3'-URM) (TTTGTT) in the 5' and 3' flanking regions, respectively. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays demonstrated that both motifs specifically bind nuclear protein(s) from E. invadens trophozoites. Additionally, we identified select genes with stage-specific expression patterns and analysed the ability of each gene promoter to drive a luciferase reporter gene during the developmental cycle. This approach confirmed three trophozoite-specific, four encystation-specific and two excystation-specific promoters. This work lays the framework for use of stage-specific promoters to express proteins of interest in a particular life-cycle stage, adding to the molecular toolbox for genetic manipulation of E

  11. Activation of Melanin Synthesis in Alternaria infectoria by Antifungal Drugs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandes, Chantal; Prados-Rosales, Rafael; Silva, Branca M A; Nakouzi-Naranjo, Antonio; Zuzarte, Mónica; Chatterjee, Subhasish; Stark, Ruth E; Casadevall, Arturo; Gonçalves, Teresa

    2015-12-28

    The importance of Alternaria species fungi to human health ranges from their role as etiological agents of serious infections with poor prognoses in immunosuppressed individuals to their association with respiratory allergic diseases. The present work focuses on Alternaria infectoria, which was used as a model organism of the genus, and was designed to unravel melanin production in response to antifungals. After we characterized the pigment produced by A. infectoria, we studied the dynamics of 1,8-dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN)-melanin production during growth, the degree of melanization in response to antifungals, and how melanization affected susceptibility to several classes of therapeutic drugs. We demonstrate that A. infectoria increased melanin deposition in cell walls in response to nikkomycin Z, caspofungin, and itraconazole but not in response to fluconazole or amphotericin B. These results indicate that A. infectoria activates DHN-melanin synthesis in response to certain antifungal drugs, possibly as a protective mechanism against these drugs. Inhibition of DHN-melanin synthesis by pyroquilon resulted in a lower minimum effective concentration (MEC) of caspofungin and enhanced morphological changes (increased hyphal balloon size), characterized by thinner and less organized A. infectoria cell walls. In summary, A. infectoria synthesizes melanin in response to certain antifungal drugs, and its susceptibility is influenced by melanization, suggesting the therapeutic potential of drug combinations that affect melanin synthesis.

  12. Binding characteristics of fluoroquinolones to synthetic levodopa melanin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ono, Chiho; Tanaka, Makoto

    2003-08-01

    To define the binding characteristics of fluoroquinolones to synthetic levodopa melanin, the binding of various drugs, including levofloxacin and ofloxacin, and positive controls (timolol and chloroquine), was investigated in-vitro. The affinity and capacity of the drug binding were calculated by Langmuir's adsorption isotherm. The affinity constant (K) and the binding capacity (r(max)) of levofloxacin were similar to those of timolol and much lower than those of chloroquine. Racemic ofloxacin and its enantiomers showed similar K and r(max), suggesting that the binding lacked stereoselectivity. The binding experiment with levofloxacin derivatives indicated that the basic nitrogen atom at position 7 of the quinolone ring, but not carboxyl group at position 3, would play a critical role in the interaction of fluoroquinolones with melanin. The melanin-drug complexes of levofloxacin and chloroquine were washed with neutral phosphate buffer, ethanol and 1 M HCl solution to explain the nature of the interaction of melanin with the drugs. Electrostatic forces mainly participate in the formation of the chloroquine-melanin complex, whereas van der Waals' and hydrophobic interactions are involved in the levofloxacin-melanin complex in addition to electrostatic forces. The interactions of various fluoroquinolones such as norfloxacin, enoxacin, sparfloxacin, ciprofloxacin and lomefloxacin with melanin were also studied. The results showed that the relative K value was: chloroquine approximately ciprofloxacin, sparfloxacin >/= lomefloxacin > timolol, levofloxacin approximately enoxacin, norfloxacin, and that the relative r(max) value was: norfloxacin, enoxacin >/= chloroquine, sparfloxacin > levofloxacin, ciprofloxacin, timolol, lomefloxacin. The fluoroquinolones vary in their affinity and capacity to bind with melanin, and ciprofloxacin and sparfloxacin showed a stronger interaction with melanin than the other fluoroquinolones studied.

  13. Biocatalysis on the surface of Escherichia coli: melanin pigmentation of the cell exterior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gustavsson, Martin; Hörnström, David; Lundh, Susanna; Belotserkovsky, Jaroslav; Larsson, Gen

    2016-01-01

    Today, it is considered state-of-the-art to engineer living organisms for various biotechnology applications. Even though this has led to numerous scientific breakthroughs, the enclosed interior of bacterial cells still restricts interactions with enzymes, pathways and products due to the mass-transfer barrier formed by the cell envelope. To promote accessibility, we propose engineering of biocatalytic reactions and subsequent product deposition directly on the bacterial surface. As a proof-of-concept, we used the AIDA autotransporter vehicle for Escherichia coli surface expression of tyrosinase and fully oxidized externally added tyrosine to the biopolymer melanin. This resulted in a color change and creation of a black cell exterior. The capture of ninety percent of a pharmaceutical wastewater pollutant followed by regeneration of the cell bound melanin matrix through a simple pH change, shows the superior function and facilitated processing provided by the surface methodology. The broad adsorption spectrum of melanin could also allow removal of other micropollutants. PMID:27782179

  14. Hepatitis B virus genotypes and mutations in the basal core promoter and pre-core/core in chronically infected patients in southern Brazil: a cross-sectional study of HBV genotypes and mutations in chronic carriers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flávia Miryan Martins Almeida de Mello

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Introduction In Brazil, little data exist regarding the distribution of genotypes in relation to basal core promoter (BCP and precore/core mutations among chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV carriers from different regions of the country. The aim of this study was to identify HBV genotypes and the frequency of mutations at the BCP and precore/core region among the prevalent genotypes in chronic carriers from southern Brazil. Methods Nested-polymerase chain reaction (nested-PCR products amplified from the S-polymerase gene, BCP and precore/core region from 54 samples were sequenced and analyzed. Results Phylogenetic analysis of the S-polymerase gene sequences showed that 66.7% (36/54 of the patients were infected with genotype D (D1, D2, D3, 25.9% (14/54 with genotype A (A1, A2, 5.6% (3/54 with subgenotype C2, and 2% (1/54 with genotype E. A comparison of virological characteristics showed significant differences between genotypes A, C and D. The comparison between HBeAg status and the G1896A stop codon mutation in patients with genotype D revealed a relationship between HBV G1896A precore mutants and genotype D and hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg seroconversion. Genotype D had a higher prevalence of the G1896A mutation and the presence of a thymine at position 1858. Genotype A was associated with a higher prevalence of the G1862T mutation and the presence of a cytosine at position 1858. Conclusions HBV genotype D (D3 is predominant in HBV chronic carriers from southern Brazil. The presence of mutations in the BCP and precore/core region was correlated with the HBV genotype and HBeAg negative status.

  15. Subcellular Compartmentalization and Trafficking of the Biosynthetic Machinery for Fungal Melanin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Upadhyay, Srijana; Xu, Xinping; Lowry, David; Jackson, Jennifer C; Roberson, Robert W; Lin, Xiaorong

    2016-03-22

    Protection by melanin depends on its subcellular location. Although most filamentous fungi synthesize melanin via a polyketide synthase pathway, where and how melanin biosynthesis occurs and how it is deposited as extracellular granules remain elusive. Using a forward genetic screen in the pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus, we find that mutations in an endosomal sorting nexin abolish melanin cell-wall deposition. We find that all enzymes involved in the early steps of melanin biosynthesis are recruited to endosomes through a non-conventional secretory pathway. In contrast, late melanin enzymes accumulate in the cell wall. Such subcellular compartmentalization of the melanin biosynthetic machinery occurs in both A. fumigatus and A. nidulans. Thus, fungal melanin biosynthesis appears to be initiated in endosomes with exocytosis leading to melanin extracellular deposition, much like the synthesis and trafficking of mammalian melanin in endosomally derived melanosomes.

  16. Endothelin-1 increases melanin synthesis in an established sheep skin melanocyte culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pang, Yamiao; Geng, Jianjun; Qin, Yilong; Wang, Haidong; Fan, Ruiwen; Zhang, Ying; Li, Hongquan; Jiang, Shan; Dong, Changsheng

    2016-08-01

    The aims of the study were to establish a culture system for sheep skin melanocytes and uncover the effects of endothelin-1 on melanin synthesis in cultured melanocytes in order to provide an optimal cell system and a theoretical basis for studying the regulatory mechanism of coat color in sheep. In this study, skin punch biopsies were harvested from the dorsal region of 1-3-yr-old sheep, and skin melanocytes were then obtained by the two-step digestion using dispase II and trypsin/ethylene diamine tetraacetic acid (EDTA). The primary cultures of the melanocytes were established and characterized by dopa-staining, immunocytochemical localization of melanocyte markers, and RT-polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis of coat color genes. To determine the effect of endothelin-1 on proliferation and melanin synthesis of melanocytes, the cultured cells were treated with different doses of endothelin-1 (10(-7), 10(-8), 10(-9), 10(-10), and 0 mol/L), and the growth rate of melanocytes, production of melanin, expression of related genes, and location of related protein in cultured cells were examined by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT), ultraviolet spectrophotometry, qRT-PCR, and immunocytochemical localization, respectively. The results showed that the established melanocyte culture functions properly. Endothelin-1 treatment increased markedly the number of melanocytes and melanin content. In responding to this treatment, expressions of microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF), melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), tyrosinase (TYR), and endothelin receptor B (EDNRB) in the melanocytes were significantly up regulated (P skin melanocytes was established successfully in vitro, and endothelin-1 promotes the melanogenesis in sheep skin melanocytes.

  17. Analysis of HBV genotype, drug resistant mutations, and pre-core/basal core promoter mutations in Korean patients with acute hepatitis B.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jong Ho; Hong, Sun Pyo; Jang, Eun Sun; Park, Sang Jong; Hwang, Seong Gyu; Kang, Sook-Kyoung; Jeong, Sook-Hyang

    2015-06-01

    Acute hepatitis B, caused by hepatitis B virus (HBV) strains with drug resistant mutations or pre-core/basal core promoter (PC/BCP) mutations, is a public health concern, because this infection is often associated with poor disease outcome or difficulty in therapeutic choice. The HBV genotype, the prevalence of drug resistant mutations, and PC/BCP mutations in Korean patients with acute hepatitis B were studied. From 2006 to 2008, 36 patients with acute hepatitis B were enrolled prospectively in four general hospitals. Among them, 20 showed detectable HBV DNA (median value was 4.8 log copies/mL). HBV genotyping and analysis of HBV mutations that conferred resistance against lamivudine, adefovir, or entecavir and of PC/BCP mutations were performed using highly sensitive restriction fragment mass polymorphism (RFMP) analysis. All 20 patients were infected with HBV genotype C, which causes almost all cases of chronic hepatitis B in Korea. No patient showed mutations that conferred resistance against lamivudine (L180M, M204V/I), adefovir (A181T, N236S), or entecavir (I169M, A184T/V, S202I/G, M250V/I/L). However, four patients had BCP mutations, and two had PC mutations. Platelet counts were significantly lower in the four patients with PC/BCP mutations compared to those with wild type. In this study, all acute hepatitis B patients had genotype C HBV strains with no drug resistant mutations. However, 20% showed PC/BCP mutations. This highlights the need for further study on the significance of PC/BCP mutations.

  18. Subcellular Compartmentalization and Trafficking of the Biosynthetic Machinery for Fungal Melanin

    OpenAIRE

    Srijana Upadhyay; Xinping Xu; David Lowry; Jennifer C. Jackson; Robert W. Roberson; Xiaorong Lin

    2016-01-01

    Protection by melanin depends on its subcellular location. Although most filamentous fungi synthesize melanin via a polyketide synthase pathway, where and how melanin biosynthesis occurs, and how it is deposited as extracellular granules, remain elusive. Using a forward genetic screen in the pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus, we find that mutations in an endosomal sorting nexin abolish melanin cell wall deposition. We find that all enzymes involved in the early steps of melanin biosynthesis are ...

  19. Replacement of the human cytomegalovirus promoter with fish enhancer and core elements to control the expression of the G gene of viral haemorrhagic septicemia virus (VHSV).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez-Lopez, A; Chinchilla, B; Encinas, P; Gomez-Casado, E; Estepa, A; Coll, J M

    2012-12-15

    This work explores some of the possibilities to replace human cytomegalovirus (CMV) core and/or enhancer promoter control elements to create new expression vectors for use with fish. The work is relevant to fish vaccination, since DNA vaccines use eukaryotic expression plasmids controlled by the human cytomegalovirus (CMV) promoter to be effective against novirhabdoviruses, such as viral haemorrhagic septicemia virus (VHSV), one of the most devastating fish viral European diseases. To reduce possible homologous recombination with fish genome, core and enhancer sequences from fish origin, such as trout interferon-inducible myxovirus protein (Mx), zebrafish retrovirus long terminal repeat (LTR) and carp β-actin (AE6), were combined with those of CMV to design alternative hybrid promoters. The substitution of CMV core and/or enhancer with the corresponding elements of Mx or the LTR core maintained a similar in vitro protein G expression level than that obtained by using the CMV promoter. Vectors using the dsRNA-inducible Mx enhancer followed either by the LTR or the AE6 cores showed the highest in vitro protein G expression levels. Furthermore, synthetic constructs using the Mx enhancer maintained their polyI:C induction capabilities despite the core used. Some of these hybrid promoters might contribute to the development of all-fish-vectors for DNA vaccines while others might be useful for more basic studies.

  20. Melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH: a new sleep factor?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pablo eTorterolo

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Neurons that utilize the neuropeptide melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH as a neuromodulator are mainly located in the lateral hypothalamus and the incerto-hypothalamic area, and have widespread projections throughout the brain. While the biological functions of this neuropeptide are exerted in humans through two metabotropic receptors, the MCHR1 and MCHR2, only the MCHR1 is present in rodents. Recently, it has been shown that the MCHergic system is involved in the control of sleep. We can summarize the experimental findings as follows:1. The areas related to the control of sleep and wakefulness have an important density of MCHergic fibers and receptors.2. MCHergic neurons are active during sleep, especially during REM sleep.3. Genetically-modified animals without MCH have less REM sleep, notably under conditions of negative energy balance. 4. Systemically administered MCHR1 antagonists reduce sleep. 5. Intraventricular microinjection of MCH increases both slow wave sleep (SWS and REM sleep; however, the increment in REM sleep is more pronounced.6. Microinjection of MCH into the dorsal raphe nucleus increases REM sleep time. REM seep is inhibited by immunoneutralization of MCH within this nucleus.7. Microinjection of MCH in the nucleus pontis oralis of the cat enhances REM sleep time and reduces REM sleep latency.All these data strongly suggest that MCH has a potent role in the promotion of sleep. Although both SWS and REM sleep are facilitated by MCH, REM sleep seems to be more sensitive to MCH modulation.

  1. Expression of melanin and insecticidal protein from Rhodotorula ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    SERVER

    2006-02-16

    Feb 16, 2006 ... Key words: Rhodotorula glutinis, Escherichia coli, Melanin, Insecticidal Protein. INTRODUCTION ... proteinaceous crystals toxic to different insect larvae (Bulla ..... Gulex univitattus, Aedes aegypti and Culex pipens. Mosq.

  2. Morphological and chemical composition characterization of commercial sepia melanin

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Mbonyiryivuze, A

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available of functions in the biosystem, including photosensitization, metal ion chelation, photoprotection to absorb a broad range of electromagnetic radiation, antibiotic, thermoregulation [6]. Melanins are found all over the body from the skin and blood...

  3. [Generation of superoxides during the interaction of melanins with oxygen].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lapina, V A; Dontsov, A E; Ostrovskiĭ, M A

    1984-10-01

    The rate of nitroblue tetrazolium (NBT) reduction by dihydroxyphenylalanine-melanin, pheomelanin and retinal pigment epithelium melanosomes under aerobic conditions (pH 7.4) is low both in the dark and upon illumination, but increases drastically in the presence of cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB). Under these conditions, the light insignificantly stimulates NBT reduction (1.3-fold). The reaction is effectively inhibited by superoxide dismutase. This suggests that superoxide anions (O2-. are formed as intermediate reaction products in the course of NBT reduction by melanins. At alkaline values of pH (greater than or equal to 9.0), the O2-.-dependent reduction of NBT can also take place in the absence of CTAB. In contrast with oxidation of photoreduced riboflavin, the melanin oxidation by O2 cannot induce lipid peroxidation. It is concluded that O2-. generation via melanin oxidation of melanosomes occurs only under non-physiological conditions and can hardly take place in vivo.

  4. Melanin content in melanoma metastases affects the outcome of radiotherapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brożyna, Anna A; Jóźwicki, Wojciech; Roszkowski, Krzysztof; Filipiak, Jan; Slominski, Andrzej T

    2016-04-05

    Melanin possess radioprotective and scavenging properties, and its presence can affect the behavior of melanoma cells, its surrounding environment and susceptibility to the therapy, as showed in vitro experiments. To determine whether melanin presence in melanoma affects the efficiency of radiotherapy (RTH) we evaluated the survival time after RTH treatment in metastatic melanoma patients (n = 57). In another cohort of melanoma patients (n = 84), the relationship between melanin level and pT and pN status was determined. A significantly longer survival time was found in patients with amelanotic metastatic melanomas in comparison to the melanotic ones, who were treated with either RTH or chemotherapy (CHTH) and RTH. These differences were more significant in a group of melanoma patients treated only with RTH. A detailed analysis of primary melanomas revealed that melanin levels were significantly higher in melanoma cells invading reticular dermis than the papillary dermis. A significant reduction of melanin pigmentation in pT3 and pT4 melanomas in comparison to pT1 and T2 tumors was observed. However, melanin levels measured in pT3-pT4 melanomas developing metastases (pN1-3, pM1) were higher than in pN0 and pM0 cases. The presence of melanin in metastatic melanoma cells decreases the outcome of radiotherapy, and melanin synthesis is related to higher disease advancement. Based on our previous cell-based and clinical research and present research we also suggest that inhibition of melanogenesis can improve radiotherapy modalities. The mechanism of relationship between melanogenesis and efficacy of RTH requires additional studies, including larger melanoma patients population and orthotopic, imageable mouse models of metastatic melanoma.

  5. Isolation of a novel strain of Aeromonas media producing high levels of DOPA-melanin and assessment of the photoprotective role of the melanin in bioinsecticide applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wan, X; Liu, H M; Liao, Y; Su, Y; Geng, J; Yang, M Y; Chen, X D; Shen, P

    2007-12-01

    To isolate a bacterium that produces high yield of melanin and to examine the effect of this bacterial pigment on the efficacy of a bioinsecticide. A novel melanin-producing bacterium, designated as strain WS, was isolated from the East Lake, Wuhan, China. Taxonomic studies of this strain indicate that it belongs to Aeromonas media. Physicochemical analysis of the pigment produced by strain WS (melanin WS) suggests that it is the authentic 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA)-melanin. This melanin and that produced by Pseudomonas maltophilia P28 (melanin P28) share many biophysical properties, but the yield of the melanin WS is significantly higher than that of the melanin P28. In addition, the melanin WS appears to be more effective in the protection of a bioinsecticide against ultraviolet (UV) or solar radiation. At the concentration of 10 ppm, the melanin P28 exhibited no photoprotective effect on the bioinsecticide against UV radiation; in contrast, 5 ppm of melanin WS displayed an obvious protective effect. Similarly, the melanin WS displayed more protective effect on the bioinsecticide against solar radiation than the melanin P28 did over a 4-day period, with the effect being more dramatic for the last 2 days. We have isolated a novel bacterial strain of A. media that produces high levels of melanin. The melanin produced by this strain offers effective photoprotection of a commercial bioinsecticide BTI against UV and solar radiation. Our study suggests that the melanin produced by our newly isolated A. media strain has the potential to be used as a general photoprotective agent for bioinsecticides.

  6. Research progress of bacterial melanin and nervous system diseases%细菌黑色素与神经系统疾病的研究进展

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    杨倩; 韩彦青; 姜晓萌; 裴宇恒; 李东芳; 李光来

    2016-01-01

    黑色素是广泛存在于自然界中的一类天然色素家族,苏云金芽孢杆菌突变株可获得高水平细菌黑色素,细菌黑色素能透过血脑屏障,具有抗氧化、螯合有毒金属、促进神经再生等生物学特性,可用来治疗某些与黑色素缺乏相关的神经性疾病,也能促进中枢神经系统及周围神经损伤后的结构和功能的恢复,文章就细菌黑色素在神经系统疾病的相关研究做了综述。%Melanin is a class of natural pigments family in nature. Bacterial melanin with high level of pigment synthesis-Bacillus thuringiensis was obtained. Bacterial melanin can cross the blood-brain barrier, accomplish antioxidant protection, chelate toxic metals, promote nerve regeneration. It can treat nervous system diseases with melanin deficiency, promote the structural and functional recovery of the central nervous system and peripheral nerve injury. This article summarized the research of the function of the bacterial melanin in the nervous system diseases.

  7. Bird Integumentary Melanins: Biosynthesis, Forms, Function and Evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ismael Galván

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Melanins are the ubiquitous pigments distributed in nature. They are one of the main pigments responsible for colors in living cells. Birds are among the most diverse animals regarding melanin-based coloration, especially in the plumage, although they also pigment bare parts of the integument. This review is devoted to the main characteristics of bird melanins, including updated views of the formation and nature of melanin granules, whose interest has been raised in the last years for inferring the color of extinct birds and non-avian theropod dinosaurs using resistant fossil feathers. The molecular structure of the two main types of melanin, eumelanin and pheomelanin, and the environmental and genetic factors that regulate avian melanogenesis are also presented, establishing the main relationship between them. Finally, the special functions of melanin in bird feathers are also discussed, emphasizing the aspects more closely related to these animals, such as honest signaling, and the factors that may drive the evolution of pheomelanin and pheomelanin-based color traits, an issue for which birds have been pioneer study models.

  8. [Intervention of nicotinamide on skin melanin genesis after UVA exposed].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patam, Muhammad; Jin, Xi-peng; Zhang, Yu-bin; Pan, Jian-ying; Shen, Guang-zu

    2007-08-01

    To investigate the interference effect of nicotinamide on UVA-induced melanin genesis and melanin transport in human skin melanocyte. The optimum UVA dose expected to cause cell proliferation: 0.2 J/cm(2), nicotinamide was added immediately after the 0.2 J/cm(2) UVA exposure and the melanin content, cell cycles, cell apoptosis and mRNA express level were measured respectively. Melanin content in melanocytes was increased significantly after exposed to 0.2 J/cm(2) UVA. Melanin content in melanocytes was decreased after treatment with 10.0 mmol/ml nicotinamide following UVA exposure, but the cell cycles and the cell apoptosis rate were not significantly altered. mRNA express levels of TYR, TRP-1 were modulated by nicotinamide. Nicotinamide has more effect on decreasing melanin genesis after UVA exposure, nicotinamide also plays a role in modulating the mRNA express of TYR, TRP-1 gene. It is possible to consider nicotinamide as an efficient and safe sun screen to provide a certain level of protection for UVA exposed skin.

  9. Bird Integumentary Melanins: Biosynthesis, Forms, Function and Evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galván, Ismael; Solano, Francisco

    2016-04-08

    Melanins are the ubiquitous pigments distributed in nature. They are one of the main pigments responsible for colors in living cells. Birds are among the most diverse animals regarding melanin-based coloration, especially in the plumage, although they also pigment bare parts of the integument. This review is devoted to the main characteristics of bird melanins, including updated views of the formation and nature of melanin granules, whose interest has been raised in the last years for inferring the color of extinct birds and non-avian theropod dinosaurs using resistant fossil feathers. The molecular structure of the two main types of melanin, eumelanin and pheomelanin, and the environmental and genetic factors that regulate avian melanogenesis are also presented, establishing the main relationship between them. Finally, the special functions of melanin in bird feathers are also discussed, emphasizing the aspects more closely related to these animals, such as honest signaling, and the factors that may drive the evolution of pheomelanin and pheomelanin-based color traits, an issue for which birds have been pioneer study models.

  10. Identification of the core promoter of STK11 gene and its transcriptional regulation by p53

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Maojin Yao; Chenjie Li; Yi Chu; Fei Wang; Xiaoliu Shi; Yongjun Wang; Hongwei Shen; Wenfeng Ning; Jianguang Tang; Xiangping Wang; Jie Li; Shiquang Zhou; Xin Yi

    2008-01-01

    Peutz-Jeghers syndrome (PJS) is an autosomal dominant disease characterized by mucocutaneous pigmentation and hamartomatous polyps. Most cases of PJS involve the inactivation of germline mutations in the serine/threonine kinase gene STK11 which is also known as LKB1. The function of STK11 was previously linked to the tumor suppressor p53 and was shown to activate the p53 target p21/ WAF1. Recently, STK11 was reported to be interacting with p53 physically in the nucleus and it can directly or indirectly phosphorylate p53. Here we characterized the 5'-flanking region of human STK11 gene and identified a 161-bp fragment with promoter activity. Sequence analysis, mutagenesis and gel shift studies revealed a binding site of Spl and p53, which affects the promoter activity. Mutation analyses showed that this fragment was required for p53-mediated transcriptional activation. This transcriptional activation was further confirmed by real-time quantitative RT-PCR and Western blot analysis. Transient transfection of p53 expression plasmid into fetal liver cell lines increased STK11 mRNA and protein levels. In conclusion, our results reveal a new role for p53 in elevating STK11 gene expression via a positive feedback pattern.

  11. Cd 2+ effect on free radicals in Cladosporium cladosporioides-melanin tested by EPR spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matuszczyk, Magdalena; Buszman, Ewa; Pilawa, Barbara; Witoszyńska, Teresa; Wilczok, Tadeusz

    2004-08-01

    Changes in free radicals system of Cladosporium cladosporioides-melanin and model DOPA-melanin caused by diamagnetic Cd 2+ ions were studied by electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy. EPR line of eumelanin was mainly found in the spectrum of Cl.cl.-melanin. Cd 2+ ions increased o-semiquinone free radicals concentration in both natural and synthetic melanins. Cd 2+ broadened EPR lines of Cl.cl.-melanin in mycelium and the ions fastened spin-lattice relaxation processes. The narrower EPR lines and slower spin-lattice relaxation were obtained for DOPA-melanin-Cd 2+ complexes than for DOPA-melanin. Pheomelanin additionally existing in Cl.cl. samples was responsible for differences between the EPR data for Cl.cl. melanin and DOPA-melanin.

  12. Promoting quality of care in disaster response: A survey of core surgical competencies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Evan G; Razek, Tarek; Elsharkawi, Hossam; Wren, Sherry M; Kushner, Adam L; Giannou, Christos; Khwaja, Kosar A; Beckett, Andrew; Deckelbaum, Dan L

    2015-07-01

    Recent humanitarian crises have led to a call for professionalization of the humanitarian field, but core competencies for the delivery of surgical care have yet to be established. The objective of this study was to survey surgeons with experience in disaster response to identify surgical competencies required to be effective in these settings. An online survey elucidating demographic information, scope of practice, and previous experience in global health and disaster response was transmitted to surgeons from a variety of surgical societies and nongovernmental organizations. Participants were provided with a list of 111 operative procedures and were asked to identify those deemed essential to the toolset of a frontline surgeon in disaster response via a Likert scale. Responses from personnel with experience in disaster response were contrasted with those from nonexperienced participants. A total of 147 surgeons completed the survey. Participants held citizenship in 22 countries, were licensed in 30 countries, and practiced in >20 countries. Most respondents (56%) had previous experience in humanitarian response. The majority agreed or strongly agreed that formal training (54%), past humanitarian response (94%), and past global health experiences (80%) provided adequate preparation. The most commonly deemed important procedures included control of intraabdominal hemorrhage (99%), abdominal packing for trauma (99%), and wound debridement (99%). Procedures deemed important by experienced personnel spanned multiple specialties. This study addressed specifically surgical competencies in disaster response. We provide a list of operative procedures that should set the stage for further structured education programs. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Core promoter-specific gene regulation: TATA box selectivity and Initiator-dependent bi-directionality of serum response factor-activated transcription.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Muyu; Gonzalez-Hurtado, Elsie; Martinez, Ernest

    2016-04-01

    Gene-specific activation by enhancers involves their communication with the basal RNA polymerase II transcription machinery at the core promoter. Core promoters are diverse and may contain a variety of sequence elements such as the TATA box, the Initiator (INR), and the downstream promoter element (DPE) recognized, respectively, by the TATA-binding protein (TBP) and TBP-associated factors of the TFIID complex. Core promoter elements contribute to the gene selectivity of enhancers, and INR/DPE-specific enhancers and activators have been identified. Here, we identify a TATA box-selective activating sequence upstream of the human β-actin (ACTB) gene that mediates serum response factor (SRF)-induced transcription from TATA-dependent but not INR-dependent promoters and requires the TATA-binding/bending activity of TBP, which is otherwise dispensable for transcription from a TATA-less promoter. The SRF-dependent ACTB sequence is stereospecific on TATA promoters but activates in an orientation-independent manner a composite TATA/INR-containing promoter. More generally, we show that SRF-regulated genes of the actin/cytoskeleton/contractile family tend to have a TATA box. These results suggest distinct TATA-dependent and INR-dependent mechanisms of TFIID-mediated transcription in mammalian cells that are compatible with only certain stereospecific combinations of activators, and that a TBP-TATA binding mechanism is important for SRF activation of the actin/cytoskeleton-related gene family.

  14. Relation between hepatitis B virus genotypes and gene mutation of basic core promoter in Li nationality

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Juntao Zeng; Zhengwen Liu; Shiping Zeng; Jing Chen

    2009-01-01

    Objective:To investigate the relation between hepatitis B virus(HBV) genotypes and the double mutation of A-to-T nucleotide(nt) 1762 and G-to-A nt 1764 in basic core promotev(BCP T1762/A1764) in patients of the Li nationality. Methods:Subjects were 125 HBV DNA positive patients that belong to the Li nationality on Hainan Island. HBV DNA genotype was determined by real time fluorimetrypolymerase chain reaction. BCP T1762/A1764 mutation was performed using the direct sequencing method. Results:The prevalence rates of genotype B, genotype C, genotype D, genotype C and D mixed infection(genotype C+D) and genotype B and D mixed infection (genotype B+C) were 31.20%, 53.60%, 12.00%, 2.40% and 0.80% respectively. Mutation frequencies in patients infected with HBV genotype C(58.21%) were significantly higher than in those infected with other genotypes (P <0.01). The serum viral load of the patients with genotype C(5.74±1.21) was also higher than that of those with genotype B(P <0.01). Conclusion:The major genotypes in the Li nationality were genotype C and genotype B. The infection of genotype D and mixed infection also occurred in the Li nationality. Genotype C HBV has a higher replication rate, and the different degrees of pathogenecity among HBV genotypes may be related to BCP T1762/ A1764 mutation frequency.

  15. Use of the PSA enhancer core element to modulate the expression of prostate- and non-prostate-specific basal promoters in a lentiviral vector context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapel-Fernandes, S; Jordier, F; Lauro, F; Maitland, N; Chiaroni, J; de Micco, P; Mannoni, P; Bagnis, C

    2006-10-01

    Composite promoters combining the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) enhancer core element with promoter elements derived from gene coding for human prostate-specific transglutaminase gene, prostate-specific membrane antigen gene, prostate-specific antigen, rat probasin or phosphoglycerate kinase were characterized for their ability to specifically express the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) gene in prostate versus non-prostate cancer cell lines when transferred with a human immunodeficiency virus-1-based lentiviral vector. By themselves minimal proximal promoter elements were found to inefficiently promote relevant tissue-specific expression; in all the vectors tested, addition of the PSA enhancer core element markedly improved EGFP expression in LnCaP, a cancer prostate cell line used as a model for prostate cancer. The composite promoter was inactive in HuH7, a hepatocarcinoma cell line used as a model of neighboring non-prostate cancer cells. Among the promoters tested, the combination of the PSA enhancer and the rat probasin promoter showed both high specificity and a strong EGFP expression. Neither a high viral input nor the presence of the cPPT/CTS sequence affected composite promoter behavior. Our data suggest that composite prostate-specific promoters constructed by combining key elements from various promoters can improve and/or confer tissue specific expression in a lentiviral vector context.

  16. Green Infrastructure Research Promotes Students' Deeper Interest in Core Courses of a Water Resources Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yerk, W.; Montalto, F. A.; Foti, R.

    2015-12-01

    As one of most innovative among low impact development technologies, Green Infrastructure (GI) is a new technology that presents a range of potential research opportunities. Inherently linked to sustainability, urban quality of life, resilience, and other such topics, GI also represents a unique opportunity to highlight the social relevance of practical STEM research to undergraduate students. The nature of research on urban GI, in fact, as well as the accessibility of the GI sites, allows students to combine hands-on experience with theoretical work. Furthermore, the range of scales of the projects is such that they can be managed within a single term, but does not preclude longer engagement. The Sustainable Water Resource Engineering lab at Drexel University is engaged in two types of GI research outside the classroom. One type is a research co-op research internship. The second is a selective university-wide faculty-mentored summer scholarship STAR (Students Tackling Advanced Research) specifically designed for freshmen. The research projects we developed for those curricula can be accomplished by undergraduate students, but also address a larger research need in this emerging field. The research tasks have included identifying and calibrating affordable instruments, designing and building experimental setups, and monitoring and evaluating performance of GI sites. The work also promoted deeper understanding of the hydrological processes and initiated learning beyond the students' current curricula. The practice of the Lab's research being embedded into the educational process receives positive feedback from the students and achieves meaningful and long-lasting learning objectives. The experience helps students to students acquire hands-on experience, improves their metacognition and evidence-based inquiring into real-world problems, and further advances decision-making and communication skills.

  17. Up-regulation effect of hepatitis B virus genome A1846T mutation on viral replication and core promoter activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ling JIANG

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective  To evaluate the influence of hepatitis B virus (HBV genome nucleotide A1846T mutation on the viral replication capacity and the transcription activity of HBV core promoter (CP in vitro. Methods  A total of 385 patients with hepatitis B admitted to the 302 Hospital of PLA were enrolled in the study, including 116 with moderate chronic hepatitis B (CHB-M, 123 with severe chronic hepatitis B (CHB-S, and 146 with acute-on-chronic liver failure (ACLF. Serum HBV DNA was isolated and full-length HBV genome was amplified. The incidence of A1846T was analyzed. Full-length HBV genomes containing 1846T mutation were cloned into pGEM-T easy vector, and the counterpart wild-type 1846A plasmids were obtained by site-directed mutagenesis. The full-length HBV genome was released from recombinant plasmid by BspQ Ⅰ/Sca Ⅰ digestion, and then transfected into HepG2 cells. Secreted HBsAg level and intracellular HBV core particles were measured 72 hours post-transfection to analyze the replication capacity (a 1.0-fold HBV genome model. 1846 mutant and wild-type full-length HBV genomes were extracted to amplify the fragment of HBV CP region, and the dual luciferase reporter of the pGL3-CP was constructed. The luciferase activity was detected 48 hours post-transfection. Results  The incidence of A1846T mutation gradually increased with the severity of hepatitis B, reaching 31.03%, 42.27%, and 55.48% in CHB-M, CHB-S and ACLF patients respectively (P<0.01. The replication capacity of 1846T mutants, level of secreted HBsAg, and transcriptional activity of CP promoter were increased by 320%, 28% and 85% respectively, compared with 1846A wild-type strains. While the more common double mutation A1762T/G1764A in CP region was increased by 67%, 9% and 72% respectively, compared with its counterpart wild-type strains. A1846T had a greater influence on viral replication capacity in vitro. Conclusions A1846T mutation could significantly increase the

  18. Toward core inter-professional health promotion competencies to address the non-communicable diseases and their risk factors through knowledge translation: Curriculum content assessment

    OpenAIRE

    Dean, Elizabeth; Moffat, Marilyn; Skinner, Margot; Dornelas de Andrade, Armele; Myezwa, Hellen; Söderlund, Anne

    2014-01-01

    Background To increase the global impact of health promotion related to non-communicable diseases, health professionals need evidence-based core competencies in health assessment and lifestyle behavior change. Assessment of health promotion curricula by health professional programs is a first step. Such program assessment is a means of 1. demonstrating collective commitment across health professionals to prevent non-communicable diseases; 2. addressing the knowledge translation gap between wh...

  19. The study of the transformer gene from Bactrocera dorsalis and B. correcta with putative core promoter regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laohakieat, Kamoltip; Aketarawong, Nidchaya; Isasawin, Siriwan; Thitamadee, Siripong; Thanaphum, Sujinda

    2016-02-01

    The transformer (tra) is a sex determining switch in different orders of insects, including Diptera, as in the family Tephritidae. The lifelong autoregulatory loop of tra female-specific splicing can be reset by the intervention of male-specific primary signals (M factor). In early development, the functional female and truncated male TRA proteins relay the sexual fates to the alternative splicing of a bisexual switch gene, doublesex (dsx) cascading the sexual differentiation processes. Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel) and Bactrocera correcta (Bezzi) are among the Bactrocera model worldwide key pests. Area-wide integrated pest management using the male-only Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) relying on genetic sexing systems is effective in control programs. We undertook the molecular characterization and comparative studies of the tra orthologues in the Bactrocera species, including the Salaya1 genetic sexing strain (GSS). RT-PCR revealed that B. dorsalis tra (Bdtra) and B. correcta tra (Bctra) transcripts contained conservation of both constitutive exons and male-specific exons as in other Bactrocera. However, new Bdtra male-specific exons were retained, diversifying the pattern of the male-specifically spliced transcripts. The coding sequences of tra were highly conserved in Bactrocera (86-95%) but less so among related genera (61-65%) within the same Tephritidae family. A conservation of deduced amino acid sequences (18 residues), called the TEP region, was identified to be distinctive among tephritids. The 5' regulatory sequence containing many structural characteristics of the putative core promoter was discovered in B. correcta. The expression patterns of Bdtra and Bctra were sex-specifically spliced and the signals relayed to the dsx genes in the adult wild-types. However, the coexistence of male- and female-specifically spliced transcripts (980 and 626 bp, respectively) of the B. dorsalis wild-type strain was found in the Salaya1 GSS adult males. The Bdtra RNA

  20. Melanin Made by Dopamine Oxidation: Thin Films and Interactions with Polyelectrolyte Multilayers

    OpenAIRE

    Bernsmann, Falk

    2014-01-01

    The spontaneous oxidation of dopamine in slightly alkaline solutions was investigated on the basis of the work of Lee and others [Science, 318:426-430, 2007], and the reaction product was identified as dopamine-melanin. The ability of melanin to covalently bind amine functional groups was confirmed by quantification of the corresponding binding sites on dopamine-melanin aggregates. Furthermore it is possible to redissolve dopamine-melanin aggregates in strongly alkaline solutions. The obtaine...

  1. Preoperative Assessment of TERT Promoter Mutation on Thyroid Core Needle Biopsies Supports Diagnosis of Malignancy and Addresses Surgical Strategy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crescenzi, A; Trimboli, P; Modica, D C; Taffon, C; Guidobaldi, L; Taccogna, S; Rainer, A; Trombetta, M; Papini, E; Zelano, G

    2016-03-01

    In the last decade, several molecular markers have been proposed to improve the diagnosis of thyroid nodules. Among these, mutations in the telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT) promoter have been correlated to malignant tumors, characterized by highest recurrence and decreased patients' survival. This suggests an important role of TERT mutational analysis in the clinical diagnosis and management of thyroid cancer patients. The aim of the study was to demonstrate the adequacy of core needle biopsy (CNB) for the preoperative assessment of TERT mutational status, to reach a more accurate definition of malignancy and a more appropriate surgical planning. Indeed, CNB is gaining momentum for improving diagnosis of thyroid nodules deemed inconclusive by fine needle aspirate (FNA). The study included 50 patients submitted to CNB due to inconclusive FNA report. TERT mutational status was correlated with BRAF mutation, definitive histology, and post-operative TNM staging of the neoplasia. C228T mutation of the TERT promoter was reported in 10% of the papillary carcinomas (PTC) series. When compared with final histology, all cases harboring TERT mutation resulted as locally invasive PTCs. The prevalence of TERT mutated cases was 17.6% among locally advanced PTCs. TERT analysis on CNB allows the assessment of the pathological population on paraffin sections before DNA isolation, minimizing the risk of false negatives due to poor sampling that affects FNA, and gathering aggregate information about morphology and TERT mutational status. Data indicating a worse outcome of the tumor might be used to individualize treatment decision, surgical option, and follow-up design. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  2. Melanin determination by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) for K. marxianus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ultraviolet light (UV) mutated K. marxianus was found to turn dark brown during a growth assay. This brown color was hypothesized to be melanin overproduction influenced by the UV exposure. Cell cultures were oxidized and HPLC analyzed to determine melanin concentrations. The resulting melanin con...

  3. CAPS-1 promotes fusion competence of stationary dense-core vesicles in presynaptic terminals of mammalian neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farina, Margherita; van de Bospoort, Rhea; He, Enqi; Persoon, Claudia M; van Weering, Jan R T; Broeke, Jurjen H; Verhage, Matthijs; Toonen, Ruud F

    2015-02-26

    Neuropeptides released from dense-core vesicles (DCVs) modulate neuronal activity, but the molecules driving DCV secretion in mammalian neurons are largely unknown. We studied the role of calcium-activator protein for secretion (CAPS) proteins in neuronal DCV secretion at single vesicle resolution. Endogenous CAPS-1 co-localized with synaptic markers but was not enriched at every synapse. Deletion of CAPS-1 and CAPS-2 did not affect DCV biogenesis, loading, transport or docking, but DCV secretion was reduced by 70% in CAPS-1/CAPS-2 double null mutant (DKO) neurons and remaining fusion events required prolonged stimulation. CAPS deletion specifically reduced secretion of stationary DCVs. CAPS-1-EYFP expression in DKO neurons restored DCV secretion, but CAPS-1-EYFP and DCVs rarely traveled together. Synaptic localization of CAPS-1-EYFP in DKO neurons was calcium dependent and DCV fusion probability correlated with synaptic CAPS-1-EYFP expression. These data indicate that CAPS-1 promotes fusion competence of immobile (tethered) DCVs in presynaptic terminals and that CAPS-1 localization to DCVs is probably not essential for this role.

  4. Differential Antifungal Activity of Human and Cryptococcal Melanins with Structural Discrepancies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Néstor Correa

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Melanin is a pigment found in all biological kingdoms, and plays a key role in protection against ultraviolet radiation, oxidizing agents, and ionizing radiation damage. Melanin exerts an antimicrobial activity against bacteria, fungi, and parasites. We demonstrated an antifungal activity of synthetic and human melanin against Candida sp. The members of the Cryptococcus neoformans and C. gattii species complexes are capsulated yeasts, which cause cryptococcosis. For both species melanin is an important virulence factor. To evaluate if cryptococcal and human melanins have antifungal activity against Cryptococcus species they both were assayed for their antifungal properties and physico-chemical characters. Melanin extracts from human hair and different strains of C. neoformans (n = 4 and C. gattii (n = 4 were investigated. The following minimum inhibitory concentrations were found for different melanins against C. neoformans and C. gattii were (average/range: 13.7/(7.8–15.6 and 19.5/(15.6–31.2 μg/mL, respectively, for human melanin; 273.4/(125–>500 and 367.2/(125.5–>500 μg/mL for C. neoformans melanin and 125/(62.5–250 and 156.2/(62–250 μg/mL for C. gattii melanin. Using Scanning Electron Microscopy we observed that human melanin showed a compact conformation and cryptococcal melanins exposed an amorphous conformation. Infrared spectroscopy (FTIR showed some differences in the signals related to C-C bonds of the aromatic ring of the melanin monomers. High Performance Liquid Chromatography established differences in the chromatograms of fungal melanins extracts in comparison with human and synthetic melanin, particularly in the retention time of the main compound of fungal melanin extracts and also in the presence of minor unknown compounds. On the other hand, MALDI-TOF-MS analysis showed slight differences in the spectra, specifically the presence of a minor intensity ion in synthetic and human melanin, as well as in some fungal

  5. Variability in the precore and core promoter regions of HBV strains in Morocco: characterization and impact on liver disease progression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bouchra Kitab

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Hepatitis B virus (HBV is one of the most common human pathogens that cause aggressive hepatitis and advanced liver disease (AdLD, including liver cirrhosis and Hepatocellular Carcinoma. The persistence of active HBV replication and liver damage after the loss of hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg has been frequently associated with mutations in the pre-core (pre-C and core promoter (CP regions of HBV genome that abolish or reduce HBeAg expression. The purpose of this study was to assess the prevalence of pre-C and CP mutations and their impact on the subsequent course of liver disease in Morocco. METHODS/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: A cohort of 186 patients with HBeAg-negative chronic HBV infection was studied (81 inactive carriers, 69 with active chronic hepatitis, 36 with AdLD. Pre-C and CP mutations were analyzed by PCR-direct sequencing method. The pre-C stop codon G1896A mutation was the most frequent (83.9% and was associated with a lower risk of AdLD development (OR, 0.4; 95% CI, 0.15-1.04; p = 0.04. HBV-DNA levels in patients with G1896A were not significantly different from the other patients carrying wild-type strains (p = 0.84. CP mutations C1653T, T1753V, A1762T/G1764A, and C1766T/T1768A were associated with higher HBV-DNA level and increased liver disease severity. Multiple logistic regression analysis showed that older age (≥ 40 years, male sex, high viral load (>4.3 log(10 IU/mL and CP mutations C1653T, T1753V, A1762T/G1764A, and C1766T/T1768A were independent risk factors for AdLD development. Combination of these mutations was significantly associated with AdLD (OR, 7.52; 95% CI, 4.8-8; p<0.0001. CONCLUSIONS: This study shows for the first time the association of HBV viral load and CP mutations with the severity of liver disease in Moroccan HBV chronic carriers. The examination of CP mutations alone or in combination could be helpful for prediction of the clinical outcome.

  6. Variability in the Precore and Core Promoter Regions of HBV Strains in Morocco: Characterization and Impact on Liver Disease Progression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kitab, Bouchra; Essaid El Feydi, Abdellah; Afifi, Rajaa; Trepo, Christian; Benazzouz, Mustapha; Essamri, Wafaa; Zoulim, Fabien; Chemin, Isabelle; Alj, Hanane Salih; Ezzikouri, Sayeh; Benjelloun, Soumaya

    2012-01-01

    Background Hepatitis B virus (HBV) is one of the most common human pathogens that cause aggressive hepatitis and advanced liver disease (AdLD), including liver cirrhosis and Hepatocellular Carcinoma. The persistence of active HBV replication and liver damage after the loss of hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg) has been frequently associated with mutations in the pre-core (pre-C) and core promoter (CP) regions of HBV genome that abolish or reduce HBeAg expression. The purpose of this study was to assess the prevalence of pre-C and CP mutations and their impact on the subsequent course of liver disease in Morocco. Methods/Principal Findings A cohort of 186 patients with HBeAg-negative chronic HBV infection was studied (81 inactive carriers, 69 with active chronic hepatitis, 36 with AdLD). Pre-C and CP mutations were analyzed by PCR-direct sequencing method. The pre-C stop codon G1896A mutation was the most frequent (83.9%) and was associated with a lower risk of AdLD development (OR, 0.4; 95% CI, 0.15–1.04; p = 0.04). HBV-DNA levels in patients with G1896A were not significantly different from the other patients carrying wild-type strains (p = 0.84). CP mutations C1653T, T1753V, A1762T/G1764A, and C1766T/T1768A were associated with higher HBV-DNA level and increased liver disease severity. Multiple logistic regression analysis showed that older age (≥40 years), male sex, high viral load (>4.3 log10 IU/mL) and CP mutations C1653T, T1753V, A1762T/G1764A, and C1766T/T1768A were independent risk factors for AdLD development. Combination of these mutations was significantly associated with AdLD (OR, 7.52; 95% CI, 4.8–8; pviral load and CP mutations with the severity of liver disease in Moroccan HBV chronic carriers. The examination of CP mutations alone or in combination could be helpful for prediction of the clinical outcome. PMID:22905181

  7. diversion of the melanin synthetic pathway by dopamine product ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Studies have been reported about the physiological regulation of the ... However, the understanding of how melanin synthesis is regulated in the human body still needs ... conditions for temperature (298.15 K) and pressure (1.00 atm) using ...

  8. Hepatitis B virus genotype C isolates with wild-type core promoter sequence replicate less efficiently than genotype B isolates but possess higher virion secretion capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qin, Yanli; Tang, Xiaoli; Garcia, Tamako; Hussain, Munira; Zhang, Jiming; Lok, Anna; Wands, Jack; Li, Jisu; Tong, Shuping

    2011-10-01

    Infection by hepatitis B virus (HBV) genotype C is associated with a prolonged viremic phase, delayed hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg) seroconversion, and an increased incidence of liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma compared with genotype B infection. Genotype C is also associated with the more frequent emergence of core promoter mutations, which increase genome replication and are independently associated with poor clinical outcomes. We amplified full-length HBV genomes from serum samples from Chinese and U. S. patients with chronic HBV infection and transfected circularized genome pools or dimeric constructs of individual clones into Huh7 cells. The two genotypes could be differentiated by Western blot analysis due to the reactivities of M and L proteins toward a monoclonal pre-S2 antibody and slightly different S-protein mobilities. Great variability in replication capacity was observed for both genotypes. The A1762T/G1764A core promoter mutations were prevalent in genotype C isolates and correlated with increased replication capacity, while the A1752G/T mutation frequently found in genotype B isolates correlated with a low replication capacity. Importantly, most genotype C isolates with wild-type core promoter sequence replicated less efficiently than the corresponding genotype B isolates due to less efficient transcription of the 3.5-kb RNA. However, genotype C isolates often displayed more efficient virion secretion. We propose that the low intracellular levels of viral DNA and core protein of wild-type genotype C delay immune clearance and trigger the subsequent emergence of A1762T/G1764A core promoter mutations to upregulate replication; efficient virion secretion compensates for the low replication capacity to ensure the establishment of persistent infection by genotype C.

  9. Structural Characterization of Melanin Pigments from Commercial Preparations of the Edible Mushroom Auricularia auricula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prados-Rosales, Rafael; Toriola, Stacy; Nakouzi, Antonio; Chatterjee, Subhasish; Stark, Ruth; Gerfen, Gary; Tumpowsky, Paul; Dadachova, Ekaterina; Casadevall, Arturo

    2015-08-26

    Many of the most widely consumed edible mushrooms are pigmented, and these have been associated with some beneficial health effects. Nevertheless, the majority of the reported compounds associated with these desirable properties are non-pigmented. We have previously reported that melanin pigment from the edible mushroom Auricularia auricula can protect mice against ionizing radiation, although no physicochemical characterization was reported. Consequently, in this study we have characterized commercial A. auricula mushroom preparations for melanin content and carried out structural characterization of isolated insoluble melanin materials using a panel of sophisticated spectroscopic and physical/imaging techniques. Our results show that approximately 10% of the dry mass of A. auricula is melanin and that the pigment has physicochemical properties consistent with those of eumelanins, including hosting a stable free radical population. Electron microscopy studies show that melanin is associated with the mushroom cell wall in a manner similar to that of melanin from the model fungus C. neoformans. Elemental analysis of melanin indicated C, H, and N ratios consistent with 5,6-dihydroxyindole-2-carboxylic acid/5,6-dihydroxyindole and 1,8-dihydroxynaphthalene eumelanin. Validation of the identity of the isolated product as melanin was achieved by EPR analysis. A. auricula melanin manifested structural differences, relative to the C. neoformans melanin, with regard to the variable proportions of alkyl chains or oxygenated carbons. Given the necessity for new oral and inexpensive radioprotective materials coupled with the commercial availability of A. auricula mushrooms, this product may represent an excellent source of edible melanin.

  10. Synthesis of melanin-like pigments by Sporothrix schenckii in vitro and during mammalian infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris-Jones, Rachael; Youngchim, Sirida; Gomez, Beatriz L; Aisen, Phil; Hay, Roderick J; Nosanchuk, Joshua D; Casadevall, Arturo; Hamilton, Andrew J

    2003-07-01

    Melanin has been implicated in the pathogenesis of several important human fungal pathogens. Existing data suggest that the conidia of the dimorphic fungal pathogen Sporothrix schenckii produce melanin or melanin-like compounds; in this study we aimed to confirm this suggestion and to demonstrate in vitro and in vivo production of melanin by yeast cells. S. schenckii grown on Mycosel agar produced visibly pigmented conidia, although yeast cells grown in brain heart infusion and minimal medium broth appeared to be nonpigmented macroscopically. However, treatment of both conidia and yeast cells with proteolytic enzymes, denaturant, and concentrated hot acid yielded dark particles similar in shape and size to the corresponding propagules, which were stable free radicals consistent with identification as melanins. Melanin particles extracted from S. schenckii yeast cells were used to produce a panel of murine monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) which labeled pigmented conidia, yeast cells, and the isolated particles. Tissue from hamster testicles infected with S. schenckii contained fungal cells that were labeled by melanin-binding MAbs, and digestion of infected hamster tissue yielded dark particles that were also reactive. Additionally, sera from humans with sporotrichosis contained antibodies that bound melanin particles. These findings indicate that S. schenckii conidia and yeast cells can produce melanin or melanin-like compounds in vitro and that yeast cells can synthesize pigment in vivo. Since melanin is an important virulence factor in other pathogenic fungi, this pigment may have a similar role in the pathogenesis of sporotrichosis.

  11. Characterization of the basal core promoter and precore regions in anti-HBe-positive inactive carriers of hepatitis B virus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ledesma, María Mora González López; Galdame, Omar; Bouzas, Belén; Tadey, Luciana; Livellara, Beatriz; Giuliano, Silvina; Viaut, Marcela; Paz, Silvia; Fainboim, Hugo; Gadano, Adrian; Campos, Rodolfo; Flichman, Diego

    2011-05-01

    The study of hepatitis B virus (HBV) genomic heterogeneity has become a major issue in investigations aimed at understanding the relationship between HBV mutants and the wide spectrum of clinical and pathological conditions associated with HBV infection. Although most chronically infected HBV patients are inactive carriers, several virological aspects of this state remain unclear. In order to determine the prevalence and clinical significance of mutations in the basal core promoter (BCP) and precore (pC) regions among inactive carriers, the nucleotide sequences from 41 inactive carriers were analyzed and compared with those from 29 individuals with chronic active hepatitis. Genotypes A (24.3%), D (37.1%), F1b (12.9%), and F4 (18.6%) were the most prevalent. Mutations in the BCP/pC regions were observed in most of the inactive carriers (92.7%) and in most of the patients with chronic active hepatitis (93.1%). The prevalence of mutation 1764(A) was significantly higher in patients with chronic active hepatitis (65.5%) than in inactive carriers (36.6%) (p=0.038), whereas the prevalences of mutations at the other positions analyzed were not significantly different. Older patients (>50 years) showed BCP/pC patterns with a higher number of substitutions. Mutations were found to be biased by genotype: the 1896(A) mutation was highly prevalent in genotypes D and F4, while alternative substitutions in the pC region were more prevalent in genotypes A and F1b. Mutations in the BCP/pC regions are the hallmark of chronic anti-HBe-positive individuals; nevertheless, the even distribution of mutations in active and inactive carriers suggests that BCP/pC mutations may occur during HBV infection not strictly related to the HBV infection activity. Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  12. Decolorization of synthetic melanins by crude laccases of Lentinus polychrous Lév.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khammuang, Saranyu; Sarnthima, Rakrudee

    2013-01-01

    Melanins are complex natural pigments that darken the skin and are difficult to degrade. This study evaluated synthetic melanin decolorization by the crude laccase from fungus Lentinus polychrous in the absence and presence of selected redox mediators. The greatest melanin decolorization activity was 87 % at pH 6.5 within 3 h in the presence of 2,2-azinobis (3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulfonate) diammonium salt (ABTS), whereas only about 22 % melanin decolorized at pH 5.0 in case of no mediator. The optimum temperatures for melanin decolorization in the absence and presence of ABTS were 55 and 35°C, respectively. Using a natural redox mediator, 1.0 mmol/L vanillin leads to 45 % melanin decolorization. Our results suggest the possibility of applying vanillin for L. polychrous laccase-catalyzed decolorization of melanin.

  13. HCV core protein-induced down-regulation of microRNA-152 promoted aberrant proliferation by regulating Wnt1 in HepG2 cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shifeng Huang

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Hepatitis C virus (HCV has been reported to regulate cellular microRNAs (miRNAs. The HCV core protein is considered to be a potential oncoprotein in HCV-related hepatocellular carcinoma (HCV-HCC, but HCV core-regulated miRNAs are largely unknown. Our preliminary experiments revealed significant down-regulation of microRNA-152 (miR-152 by HCV core protein in HepG2 cells. Through target gene prediction softwares, Wnt1 was predicted to be a potential target of miR-152. The present study was initiated to investigate whether miR-152 is aberrantly regulated by the HCV core protein, and involved in the regulation of the aberrant proliferation of HCV-HCC cells. METHODS: MiR-152 levels were examined by stem-loop real-time RT-PCR (SLqRT-PCR. Cell proliferation was analyzed by MTT and colony formation assay. Cell cycle analysis was performed by flow cytometry. Luciferase reporter assay was conducted to confirm miRNA-target association. Wnt1 expression was determined by real-time qPCR and Western blotting. RESULTS: HCV core protein significantly suppressed miR-152 expression, and led to significant Wnt1 up-regulation with a concomitant aberrantly promoted proliferation. Moreover, we validated that miR-152 inhibition promoted, while miR-152 mimics inhibited cell proliferation. Using, qRT-PCR and western blot, Wnt1 was demonstrated to be regulated by miR-152. Luciferase activity assay showed that while miR-152 mimics significantly reduced the luciferase activity by 83.76% (P<0.0001, miR-152 inhibitor showed no effect on luciferase reporter. Most notably, salvage expression of miR-152 after Ad-HCV core infection for 24 h almost totally reversed the proliferation-promoting effect of the HCV core protein, and meanwhile, reduced the expression of both Wnt1 mRNA and protein to basal levels. CONCLUSION: These findings provide important evidence that the reduced miR-152 expression by HCV core protein can indirectly lose an inhibitory effect on Wnt1

  14. Stronger enhancer II/core promoter activities of hepatitis B virus isolates of B2 subgenotype than those of C2 subgenotype

    OpenAIRE

    Yanli Qin; Xueshi Zhou; Haodi Jia; Chaoyang Chen; Weifeng Zhao; Jiming Zhang; Shuping Tong

    2016-01-01

    Hepatitis B virus (HBV) genotype C causes prolonged chronic infection and increased risk for liver cancer than genotype B. Our previous work revealed lower replication capacity of wild-type genotype C2 than B2 isolates. HBV DNA replication is driven by pregenomic RNA, which is controlled by core promoter (CP) and further augmented by enhancer I (ENI) and enhancer II (ENII). DNA fragments covering these regulatory elements were amplified from B2 and C2 isolates to generate luciferase reporter ...

  15. Isolation and characterization of melanin pigment from yesso scallop Patinopecten yessoensis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Xiujun; Wu, Biao; Zhou, Liqing; Liu, Zhihong; Dong, Yinghui; Yang, Aiguo

    2017-04-01

    Melanin is one of the essential compounds in the pigments of molluscan shells. However, the effects of melanin on color variations in molluscs are largely unknown. Our previous study suggests that Yesso scallop Patinopecten yessoensis might contain melanin pigment in the dark brown shell. We therefore isolated melanin from the pigmented shells using hydrochloric acid method, and characterized the types of melanin pigments by spectrophotometry. The purified melanin, which was verified by spectrophotometry scanning and HPLC analysis, showed the typical characteristics of melanin absorption spectra and HPLC chromatograms. The contents of pheomelanin and eumelanin in pigmented shells, which were determined by the linear standard curve of melanin at 405 nm and 350 nm absorbance, were 48.23 ± 1.350 and 157.65 ± 5.905 mg, respectively. The present results indicate that the brown-pigmented shells of scallops comprise approximately 76.6% of eumelanin and 23.4% of pheomelanin, which supports the presence of eumelanin-rich pigment in scallop shells. Therefore, the combination of hydrochloric acid extraction and spectrophotometric quantification is a rapid and efficient method to isolate and quantify melanin in shells. This will facilitate the melanin studies related to shell color polymorphism and the selective breeding of bivalves with different shell colors.

  16. Melanin and Melanin-Related Polymers as Materials with Biomedical and Biotechnological Applications—Cuttlefish Ink and Mussel Foot Proteins as Inspired Biomolecules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Solano

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The huge development of bioengineering during the last years has boosted the search for new bioinspired materials, with tunable chemical, mechanical, and optoelectronic properties for the design of semiconductors, batteries, biosensors, imaging and therapy probes, adhesive hydrogels, tissue restoration, photoprotectors, etc. These new materials should complement or replace metallic or organic polymers that cause cytotoxicity and some adverse health effects. One of the most interesting biomaterials is melanin and synthetic melanin-related molecules. Melanin has a controversial molecular structure, dependent on the conditions of polymerization, and therefore tunable. It is found in animal hair and skin, although one of the common sources is cuttlefish (Sepia officinalis ink. On the other hand, mussels synthesize adhesive proteins to anchor these marine animals to wet surfaces. Both melanin and mussel foot proteins contain a high number of catecholic residues, and their properties are related to these groups. Dopamine (DA can easily polymerize to get polydopamine melanin (PDAM, that somehow shares properties with melanin and mussel proteins. Furthermore, PDAM can easily be conjugated with other components. This review accounts for the main aspects of melanin, as well as DA-based melanin-like materials, related to their biomedical and biotechnological applications.

  17. Melanin and Melanin-Related Polymers as Materials with Biomedical and Biotechnological Applications-Cuttlefish Ink and Mussel Foot Proteins as Inspired Biomolecules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solano, Francisco

    2017-07-18

    The huge development of bioengineering during the last years has boosted the search for new bioinspired materials, with tunable chemical, mechanical, and optoelectronic properties for the design of semiconductors, batteries, biosensors, imaging and therapy probes, adhesive hydrogels, tissue restoration, photoprotectors, etc. These new materials should complement or replace metallic or organic polymers that cause cytotoxicity and some adverse health effects. One of the most interesting biomaterials is melanin and synthetic melanin-related molecules. Melanin has a controversial molecular structure, dependent on the conditions of polymerization, and therefore tunable. It is found in animal hair and skin, although one of the common sources is cuttlefish (Sepia officinalis) ink. On the other hand, mussels synthesize adhesive proteins to anchor these marine animals to wet surfaces. Both melanin and mussel foot proteins contain a high number of catecholic residues, and their properties are related to these groups. Dopamine (DA) can easily polymerize to get polydopamine melanin (PDAM), that somehow shares properties with melanin and mussel proteins. Furthermore, PDAM can easily be conjugated with other components. This review accounts for the main aspects of melanin, as well as DA-based melanin-like materials, related to their biomedical and biotechnological applications.

  18. Detection of antibodies against Paracoccidioides brasiliensis melanin in in vitro and in vivo studies during infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urán, Martha E; Nosanchuk, Joshua D; Restrepo, Angela; Hamilton, Andrew J; Gómez, Beatriz L; Cano, Luz E

    2011-10-01

    Several cell wall constituents, including melanins or melanin-like compounds, have been implicated in the pathogenesis of a wide variety of microbial diseases caused by diverse species of pathogenic bacteria, fungi, and helminthes. Among these microorganisms, the dimorphic fungal pathogen Paracoccidioides brasiliensis produces melanin in its conidial and yeast forms. In the present study, melanin particles from P. brasiliensis were injected into BALB/c mice in order to produce monoclonal antibodies (MAbs). We identified five immunoglobulin G1 (IgG1) κ-chain and four IgM melanin-binding MAbs. The five IgG1 κ-chain isotypes are the first melanin-binding IgG MAbs ever reported. The nine MAbs labeled P. brasiliensis conidia and yeast cells both in vitro and in pulmonary tissues. The MAbs cross-reacted with melanin-like purified particles from other fungi and also with commercial melanins, such as synthetic and Sepia officinalis melanin. Melanization during paracoccidioidomycosis (PCM) was also further supported by the detection of IgG antibodies reactive to melanin from P. brasiliensis conidia and yeast in sera and bronchoalveolar lavage fluids from P. brasiliensis-infected mice, as well as in sera from human patients with PCM. Serum specimens from patients with other mycoses were also tested for melanin-binding antibodies by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and cross-reactivities were detected for melanin particles from different fungal sources. These results suggest that melanin from P. brasiliensis is an immunologically active fungal structure that activates a strong IgG humoral response in humans and mice.

  19. Structure and Function of Iron-Loaded Synthetic Melanin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Yiwen; Xie, Yijun; Wang, Zhao; Zang, Nanzhi; Carniato, Fabio; Huang, Yuran; Andolina, Christopher M.; Parent, Lucas R.; Ditri, Treffly B.; Walter, Eric D.; Botta, Mauro; Rinehart, Jeffrey D.; Gianneschi, Nathan C.

    2016-11-22

    We describe a synthetic method for increasing and controlling the iron loading of synthetic melanin nanoparticles and use the resulting materials to perform a systematic quantitative investigation on their structure- property relationship. A comprehensive analysis by magnetometry, electron paramagnetic resonance, and nuclear magnetic relaxation dispersion reveals the complexities of their magnetic behavior and how these intraparticle magnetic interactions manifest in useful material properties such as their performance as MRI contrast agents. This analysis allows predictions of the optimal iron loading through a quantitative modeling of antiferromagnetic coupling that arises from proximal iron ions. This study provides a detailed understanding of this complex class of synthetic biomaterials and gives insight into interactions and structures prevalent in naturally occurring melanins.

  20. Flavonoids and Melanins: A Common Strategy across Two Kingdoms

    OpenAIRE

    Carletti, Giorgia; Nervo, Giuseppe; Cattivelli, Luigi

    2014-01-01

    Ultraviolet (UV) radiations alter a number of metabolic functions in vivant. They produce damages to lipids, nucleic acids and proteins, generating reactive oxygen species such as singlet oxygen (O2), hydroxyl radical (HO) and superoxide anion (O2 -). Plants and animals, after their water emersion, have developed biochemical mechanisms to protect themselves from that environmental threat through a common strategy. Melanins in animals and flavonoids in plants are antioxidant pigments acting as...

  1. From field to database : a user-oriented approche to promote cyber-curating of scientific drilling cores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pignol, C.; Arnaud, F.; Godinho, E.; Galabertier, B.; Caillo, A.; Billy, I.; Augustin, L.; Calzas, M.; Rousseau, D. D.; Crosta, X.

    2016-12-01

    Managing scientific data is probably one the most challenging issues in modern science. In plaeosciences the question is made even more sensitive with the need of preserving and managing high value fragile geological samples: cores. Large international scientific programs, such as IODP or ICDP led intense effort to solve this problem and proposed detailed high standard work- and dataflows thorough core handling and curating. However many paleoscience results derived from small-scale research programs in which data and sample management is too often managed only locally - when it is… In this paper we present a national effort leads in France to develop an integrated system to curate ice and sediment cores. Under the umbrella of the national excellence equipment program CLIMCOR, we launched a reflexion about core curating and the management of associated fieldwork data. Our aim was then to conserve all data from fieldwork in an integrated cyber-environment which will evolve toward laboratory-acquired data storage in a near future. To do so, our demarche was conducted through an intimate relationship with field operators as well laboratory core curators in order to propose user-oriented solutions. The national core curating initiative proposes a single web portal in which all teams can store their fieldwork data. This portal is used as a national hub to attribute IGSNs. For legacy samples, this requires the establishment of a dedicated core list with associated metadata. However, for forthcoming core data, we developed a mobile application to capture technical and scientific data directly on the field. This application is linked with a unique coring-tools library and is adapted to most coring devices (gravity, drilling, percussion etc.) including multiple sections and holes coring operations. Those field data can be uploaded automatically to the national portal, but also referenced through international standards (IGSN and INSPIRE) and displayed in international

  2. Flavonoids and Melanins: a common strategy across two kingdoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carletti, Giorgia; Nervo, Giuseppe; Cattivelli, Luigi

    2014-01-01

    Ultraviolet (UV) radiations alter a number of metabolic functions in vivant. They produce damages to lipids, nucleic acids and proteins, generating reactive oxygen species such as singlet oxygen (O2), hydroxyl radical (HO) and superoxide anion (O2 (-)). Plants and animals, after their water emersion, have developed biochemical mechanisms to protect themselves from that environmental threat through a common strategy. Melanins in animals and flavonoids in plants are antioxidant pigments acting as free radical scavenging mechanisms. Both are phenol compounds constitutively synthesized and enhanced after exposure to UV rays, often conferring a red-brown-dark tissue pigmentation. Noteworthy, beside anti-oxidant scavenging activity, melanins and flavonoids have acquired secondary functions that, both in plants and animals, concern reproductions and fitness. Plants highly pigmented are more resistant to biotic and abiotic stresses. Darker wild vertebrates are generally more aggressive, sexually active and resistant to stress than lighter individuals. Flavonoids have been associated with signal attraction between flowers and insects and with plant-plant interaction. Melanin pigmentation has been proposed as trait in bird communication, acting as honest signals of quality. This review shows how the molecular mechanisms leading to tissue pigmentation have many functional analogies between plants and animals and how their origin lies in simpler organisms such as Cyanobacteria. Comparative studies between plant and animal kingdoms can reveal new insight of the antioxidant strategies in vivant.

  3. Genetic Basis of Melanin Pigmentation in Butterfly Wings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Linlin; Martin, Arnaud; Perry, Michael W; van der Burg, Karin R L; Matsuoka, Yuji; Monteiro, Antónia; Reed, Robert D

    2017-04-01

    Despite the variety, prominence, and adaptive significance of butterfly wing patterns, surprisingly little is known about the genetic basis of wing color diversity. Even though there is intense interest in wing pattern evolution and development, the technical challenge of genetically manipulating butterflies has slowed efforts to functionally characterize color pattern development genes. To identify candidate wing pigmentation genes, we used RNA sequencing to characterize transcription across multiple stages of butterfly wing development, and between different color pattern elements, in the painted lady butterfly Vanessa cardui This allowed us to pinpoint genes specifically associated with red and black pigment patterns. To test the functions of a subset of genes associated with presumptive melanin pigmentation, we used clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/Cas9 genome editing in four different butterfly genera. pale, Ddc, and yellow knockouts displayed reduction of melanin pigmentation, consistent with previous findings in other insects. Interestingly, however, yellow-d, ebony, and black knockouts revealed that these genes have localized effects on tuning the color of red, brown, and ochre pattern elements. These results point to previously undescribed mechanisms for modulating the color of specific wing pattern elements in butterflies, and provide an expanded portrait of the insect melanin pathway. Copyright © 2017 by the Genetics Society of America.

  4. Sub-nm 3D observation of human hair melanin by high-voltage STEM.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imai, Takehito; Higuchi, Kimitaka; Yamamoto, Yuta; Arai, Shigeo; Nakano, Takashi; Tanaka, Nobuo

    2016-04-01

    The ultrastructure of melanin granules in human hair was studied using 1,000 kV high-voltage scanning transmission electron microscopy to successfully reconstruct three-dimensional images of the whole melanin granule. It was revealed that the melanin granule was composed of a membrane-like outer structure that included many spherical vesicles, and an inner matrix containing a sheet-like structure in the elongated direction of the melanin granule and a sheet-like arrays structure in the cross direction. The outer structure of the melanin granule was maintained even after exposure to hair-bleaching agents to decompose the melanin granule, suggesting that the outer structure was a highly robust structure and composition compared with the inner matrix . © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Japanese Society of Microscopy. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  5. Melanin from the nitrogen-fixing bacterium Azotobacter chroococcum: a spectroscopic characterization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerjee, Aulie; Supakar, Subhrangshu; Banerjee, Raja

    2014-01-01

    Melanins, the ubiquitous hetero-polymer pigments found widely dispersed among various life forms, are usually dark brown/black in colour. Although melanins have variety of biological functions, including protection against ultraviolet radiation of sunlight and are used in medicine, cosmetics, extraction of melanin from the animal and plant kingdoms is not an easy task. Using complementary physicochemical techniques (i.e. MALDI-TOF, FTIR absorption and cross-polarization magic angle spinning solid-state (13)C NMR), we report here the characterization of melanins extracted from the nitrogen-fixing non-virulent bacterium Azotobacter chroococcum, a safe viable source. Moreover, considering dihydroxyindole moiety as the main constituent, an effort is made to propose the putative molecular structure of the melanin hetero-polymer extracted from the bacterium. Characterization of the melanin obtained from Azotobacter chroococcum would provide an inspiration in extending research activities on these hetero-polymers and their use as protective agent against UV radiation.

  6. Insertion of core CpG island element into human CMV promoter for enhancing recombinant protein expression stability in CHO cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mariati; Yeo, Jessna H M; Koh, Esther Y C; Ho, Steven C L; Yang, Yuansheng

    2014-01-01

    The human cytomegalovirus promoter (hCMV) is susceptible to gene silencing in CHO cells, most likely due to epigenetic events, such as DNA methylation and histone modifications. The core CpG island element (IE) from the hamster adenine phosphoribosyltransferase gene has been shown to prevent DNA methylation. A set of modified hCMV promoters was developed by inserting one or two copies of IE in either forward or reverse orientations either upstream of the hCMV enhancer, between the enhancer and core promoter (CP), or downstream of the CP. The modified hCMV with one copy of IE inserted between the enhancer and core promoter in reverse orientation (MR1) was most effective at enhancing expression stability without compromising expression level when compared with the wild-type (WT) hCMV. A third of 18 EGFP expressing clones generated using MR1 retained 70% of their starting expression level after 8 weeks of culture in the absence of selection pressure, while none of 18 WT hCMV generated clones had expression above 50%. MR1 also improved antibody expression stability of methotrexate (MTX) amplified CHO cell lines. Stably transfected pools generated using MR1 maintained 62% of their original monoclonal antibody titer after 8 weeks of culture in the absence of MTX, compared to only 37% for WT hCMV pools. Low levels of CpG methylation within both WT hCMV and MR1 were observed in all the analyzed cell lines and the methylation levels did not correlate to the expression stability, suggesting IE enhances expression stability by other mechanisms other than preventing methylation. © 2014 American Institute of Chemical Engineers.

  7. HCV core protein promotes liver fibrogenesis via up-regulation of CTGF with TGF-beta1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shin, Ju Yeop; Hur, Wonhee; Wang, Jin Sang; Jang, Jeong Won; Kim, Chang Wook; Bae, Si Hyun; Jang, Sung Key; Yang, Se-Hwan; Sung, Young Chul; Kwon, Oh-Joo; Yoon, Seung Kew

    2005-04-30

    Liver cirrhosis is one of the major complications of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, but the mechanisms underlying HCV-related fibrogenesis are still not clear. Although the roles of HCV core protein remain poorly understood, it is supposed to play an important role in the regulation of cellular growth and hepatocarcinogenesis. The aim of this study was to examine the role of HCV core protein on the hepatic fibrogenesis. We established an in vitro co-culture system with primary hepatic stellate cell (HSC) isolated from rats, and a stable HepG2-HCV core cell line which had been transfected with HCV core gene. The expressions of fibrosis-related molecules transforming growth factor beta1 (TGF-beta1), transforming growth factor beta receptor II (TGFbetaRII), alpha-smooth muscle actin (alpha-SMA) and connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) were analyzed via histological or molecular methods. In addition, the expression levels of matrix metaloprotinase-2 (MMP-2) and collagen type I (Col I) from the co-cultured media were measured by zymogram and ELISA, respectively. The expressions of alpha-SMA, TGF-beta1, Col I, TGFbetaRII and MMP-2 were significantly increased in the co-culture of stable HepG2-HCV core with HSC. Moreover, the significant increases of CTGF and TGF-beta1 in the HCV core-expressing cells were observed by either Northern or Western blot analysis. These results suggest that HCV core protein may contribute to the hepatic fibrogenesis via up-regulation of CTGF and TGF-beta1.

  8. Influence of variation in melanin content on absorbance spectra of liquid skin phantoms

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Smit, Jacoba E

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available , Melanin Skin pigments • Melanin (epidermis), Haemoglobin (dermis), Bilirubin, Carotene, Keratin Melanocytes • Located at epidermal-dermal junction • Melanosomes • Melanin biosynthesis • In contact with ~ 40 keratinocytes Slide 4 of 41 © CSIR... due to keratin. More realistic phantoms – adding keratin • Comparison between the PheroidTM phantoms and melanosomes from different skin phototypes could not be made. To verify the true amount to which these phantoms represent real skin, such a...

  9. Domains of Core Competency, Standards, and Quality Assurance for Building Global Capacity in Health Promotion: The Galway Consensus Conference Statement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allegrante, John P.; Barry, Margaret M.; Airhihenbuwa, Collins O.; Auld, M. Elaine; Collins, Janet L.; Lamarre, Marie-Claude; Magnusson, Gudjon; McQueen, David V.; Mittelmark, Maurice B.

    2009-01-01

    This paper reports the outcome of the Galway Consensus Conference, an effort undertaken as a first step toward international collaboration on credentialing in health promotion and health education. Twenty-nine leading authorities in health promotion, health education, and public health convened a 2-day meeting in Galway, Ireland, during which the…

  10. Applying photoacoustics to quantification of melanin concentration in retinal pigment epithelium (Conference Presentation)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shu, Xiao; Zhang, Hao F.; Liu, Wenzhong

    2016-03-01

    The melanin in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) protects retina and other ocular tissues by photo-screening and acting as antioxidant and free radical scavenger. It helps maintain normal visual functions since human eye is subjected to lifelong high oxygen stress and photon exposure. Loss of the RPE melanin weakens the protection mechanism and jeopardizes ocular health. Local decrease in the RPE melanin concentration is believed to be both a cause and a sign of early-stage age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the leading blinding disease in developed world. Current technology cannot quantitatively measure the RPE melanin concentration which might be a promising marker in early AMD screening. Photoacoustic ophthalmoscopy (PAOM), as an emerging optical absorption-based imaging technology, can potentially be applied to measure the RPE melanin concentration if the dependence of the detectable photoacoustic (PA) signal amplitudes on the RPE melanin concentrations is verified. In this study, we tested the feasibility of using PA signal ratio from RPE melanin and the nearby retinal blood vessels as an indicator of the RPE melanin variation. A novel whole eye optical model was designed and Monte Carlo modeling of light (MCML) was employed. We examined the influences on quantification from PAOM axial resolution, the depth and diameter of the retinal blood vessel, and the RPE thickness. The results show that the scheme is robust to individual histological and illumination variations. This study suggests that PAOM is capable of quantitatively measuring the RPE melanin concentration in vivo.

  11. Effect of pH on Paramagnetic Centers in Cladosporium cladosporioides Melanin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pilawa, B.; Buszman, E.; Gondzik, A.; Wilczyński, S.; Zdybel, M.; Witoszyńska, T.; Wilczok, T.

    2006-07-01

    Paramagnetic centers in melanin existing in pigmented soil fungi Cladosporium cladosporioides cultured at acidic (4, 5, 6), neutral (7), and alkaline (8) pH were studied by EPR method. o-semiquinone free radicals (g: 2.0032-2.0040) concentration in melanin biopolymer increased for pH from 4 to 6, decreased at pH 7, and reached the maximum value at pH 8. It may be expected that melanin free radicals reactions with small molecules (metal ions, drugs) are the most effective at pH between 6 and 8. Slow spin-lattice relaxation processes exist in the all studied melanin samples.

  12. Production of natural edible melanin by Auricularia auricula and its physicochemical properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Shujing; Zhang, Xiaojuan; Chen, Wenxing; Zhang, Liaoyuan; Zhu, Hu

    2016-04-01

    Fermentation conditions of natural edible melanin by Auricularia auricula were optimized to obtain a high melanin yield and physicochemical properties of melanin were firstly investigated. The results indicated that yeast extract, tyrosine and lactose have significant effects on melanin production. Under the proposed optimized conditions, the melanin experimental yield (2.97 g/L) closely matched the value (3.04 g/L) predicted by the second-order model, which provided a statistically prediction of media in submerged fermentation of A. auricula. The yield achieved was 2.14-fold higher compared to the control. It was firstly revealed that tyrosine could stimulate melanin synthesis in A. auricula. The results showed that this melanin had better thermostability and light resistance, and its solubility was relatively high under alkaline conditions. Zn(2+) and Cu(2+) could result in melanin precipitation. The results should be useful for the efficient production of melanin and enable numerous applications in food, cosmetics, pharmacology, medicines and other fields.

  13. Production and cytotoxicity of extracellular insoluble and droplets of soluble melanin by Streptomyces lusitanus DMZ-3.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madhusudhan, D N; Mazhari, Bi Bi Zainab; Dastager, Syed G; Agsar, Dayanand

    2014-01-01

    A Streptomyces lusitanus DMZ-3 strain with potential to synthesize both insoluble and soluble melanins was detected. Melanins are quite distinguished based on their solubility for varied biotechnological applications. The present investigation reveals the enhanced production of insoluble and soluble melanins in tyrosine medium by a single culture. Streptomyces lusitanus DMZ-3 was characterized by 16S rRNA gene analysis. An enhanced production of 5.29 g/L insoluble melanin was achieved in a submerged bioprocess following response surface methodology. Combined interactive effect of temperature (50°C), pH (8.5), tyrosine (2.0 g/L), and beef extract (0.5 g/L) were found to be critical variables for enhanced production in central composite design analysis. An optimized indigenous slant culture system was an innovative approach for the successful production (264 mg/L) of pure soluble melanin from the droplets formed on the surface of the culture. Both insoluble and soluble melanins were confirmed and characterized by Chemical, reactions, UV, FTIR, and TLC analysis. First time, cytotoxic study of melanin using brine shrimps was reported. Maximum cytotoxic activity of soluble melanin was Lc50-0.40 µg/mL and insoluble melanin was Lc50-0.80 µg/mL.

  14. Isolation and characterization of biologically active melanin from Actinoalloteichus sp. MA-32.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manivasagan, Panchanathan; Venkatesan, Jayachandran; Senthilkumar, Kalimuthu; Sivakumar, Kannan; Kim, Se-Kwon

    2013-07-01

    Melanins are enigmatic pigments and biological macromolecules that are produced by a wide variety of microorganisms including several species of bacteria and fungi. The present study was carried out on isolation and characterization of melanin from marine actinobacteria, Actinoalloteichus sp. MA-32. Medium composition and culture conditions for the melanin production by Actinoalloteichus sp. MA-32 were optimized using two statistical methods: Plackett-Burman design applied to find the key ingredients and conditions for the best yield of melanin production and central composite design used to optimize the concentration of the four significant variables: glycerol, L-tyrosine, NaCl and trace salt solution. The melanin was optimally active at pH 7-9 and temperature 45-60°C and it was most stable up to pH 11 and 4% of NaCl concentration. Melanin was examined by UV-vis absorption spectroscopy and infrared spectrometry. Melanin has potential antibacterial activity as it showed greater antagonistic and it has a strong antioxidant potential observed in the in vitro evaluation of its DPPH radical-scavenging activity, superoxide radical-scavenging activity, nitric oxide-scavenging activity, reducing power and metal chelating activity. The observed activities indicate that melanin might be a novel potential antioxidant. This study suggested that the melanin could potentially be used as a natural antioxidant in the food, cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries.

  15. Different culture media containing methyldopa for melanin production by Cryptococcus species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ralciane de Paula Menezes

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: Melanin production by species of Cryptococcus is widely used to characterize C. neoformans complex in mycology laboratories. This study aims to test the efficacy of methyldopa from pharmaceutical tablet as a substrate for melanin production, to compare the production of melanin using different agar base added with methyldopa, and to compare the melanin produced in those media with that produced in Niger seed agar and sunflower seed agar by C. neoformans, C. laurentii, and C. albidus. Two isolates of each species, C. neoformans, C. laurentii, and C. albidus, and one of Candida albicans were used to experimentally detect conditions for melanin production. METHODS: The following media were tested: Mueller-Hinton agar (MHA, brain and heart infusion agar (BHIA, blood agar base (BAB, and minimal medium agar (MMA, all added with methyldopa, and the media Niger seed agar (NSA and sunflower seed agar (SSA. RESULTS: All isolates grew in most of the culture media after 24h. Strains planted on media BAB and BHIA showed growth only after 48h. All isolates produced melanin in MMA, MHA, SSA, and NSA media. CONCLUSIONS: Methyldopa in the form pharmaceutical tablet can be used as a substrate for melanin production by Cryptococcus species; minimal medium plus methyldopa was more efficient than the BAB, MHA, and BHIA in the melanin production; and NSA and SSA, followed by MMA added with methyldopa, were more efficient than other media studied for melanin production by all strains studied.

  16. Expression pattern and core region analysis of AtMPK3 promoter in response to environmental stresses

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2010-01-01

    The protein kinase AtMPK3,a component of the MAP kinase cascade,plays an important role in stress signal transduction in plant cells. To clarify how AtMPK3 is regulated at the transcriptional level in response to various environmental factors, the 1016-bp promoter sequence upstream of the transcription start site of the AtMPK3 gene was isolated. Analyses of the promoter sequence using plant promoter databases revealed that the AtMPK3 promoter contains many potential cis-acting elements involved in environmental stress responses. We constructed four deletion mutants of the AtMPK3 promoter, and introduced the intact and truncated promoter sequences fused to the β-glucuronidase (GUS) gene into Arabidopsis. GUS histochemical staining and quantitative fluorometric GUS assays were performed to visualize and compare the expression patterns in response to different environmental stimuli. The region between-188 and-62 upstream of the transcription start site was identified as the essential DNA sequence of the AtMPK3 promoter for responses to drought, high salinity, low temperature, and wounding. These results advance our understanding of the molecular mechanisms controlling AtMPK3 expression in response to different environmental stimuli.

  17. Detailed analysis of Helicobacter pylori Fur-regulated promoters reveals a Fur box core sequence and novel Fur-regulated genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pich, Oscar Q; Carpenter, Beth M; Gilbreath, Jeremy J; Merrell, D Scott

    2012-06-01

    In Helicobacter pylori, iron balance is controlled by the Ferric uptake regulator (Fur), an iron-sensing repressor protein that typically regulates expression of genes implicated in iron transport and storage. Herein, we carried out extensive analysis of Fur-regulated promoters and identified a 7-1-7 motif with dyad symmetry (5'-TAATAATnATTATTA-3'), which functions as the Fur box core sequence of H. pylori. Addition of this sequence to the promoter region of a typically non-Fur regulated gene was sufficient to impose Fur-dependent regulation in vivo. Moreover, mutation of this sequence within Fur-controlled promoters negated regulation. Analysis of the H. pylori chromosome for the occurrence of the Fur box established the existence of well-conserved Fur boxes in the promoters of numerous known Fur-regulated genes, and revealed novel putative Fur targets. Transcriptional analysis of the new candidate genes demonstrated Fur-dependent repression of HPG27_51, HPG27_52, HPG27_199, HPG27_445, HPG27_825 and HPG27_1063, as well as Fur-mediated activation of the cytotoxin associated gene A, cagA (HPG27_507). Furthermore, electrophoretic mobility shift assays confirmed specific binding of Fur to the promoters of each of these genes. Future experiments will determine whether loss of Fur regulation of any of these particular genes contributes to the defects in colonization exhibited by the H. pylori fur mutant.

  18. Toward core inter-professional health promotion competencies to address the non-communicable diseases and their risk factors through knowledge translation: curriculum content assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dean, Elizabeth; Moffat, Marilyn; Skinner, Margot; Dornelas de Andrade, Armele; Myezwa, Hellen; Söderlund, Anne

    2014-07-14

    To increase the global impact of health promotion related to non-communicable diseases, health professionals need evidence-based core competencies in health assessment and lifestyle behavior change. Assessment of health promotion curricula by health professional programs is a first step. Such program assessment is a means of 1. demonstrating collective commitment across health professionals to prevent non-communicable diseases; 2. addressing the knowledge translation gap between what is known about non-communicable diseases and their risk factors consistent with 'best' practice; and, 3. establishing core health-based competencies in the entry-level curricula of established health professions. Consistent with the World Health Organization's definition of health (i.e., physical, emotional and social wellbeing) and the Ottawa Charter, health promotion competencies are those that support health rather than reduce signs and symptoms primarily. A process algorithm to guide the implementation of health promotion competencies by health professionals is described. The algorithm outlines steps from the initial assessment of a patient's/client's health and the indications for health behavior change, to the determination of whether that health professional assumes primary responsibility for implementing health behavior change interventions or refers the patient/client to others.An evidence-based template for assessment of the health promotion curriculum content of health professional education programs is outlined. It includes clinically-relevant behavior change theory; health assessment/examination tools; and health behavior change strategies/interventions that can be readily integrated into health professionals' practices. Assessment of the curricula in health professional education programs with respect to health promotion competencies is a compelling and potentially cost-effective initial means of preventing and reversing non-communicable diseases. Learning evidence

  19. Specific mutations of basal core promoter are associated with chronic liver disease in hepatitis B virus subgenotype D1 prevalent in Turkey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sunbul, Mustafa; Sugiyama, Masaya; Kurbanov, Fuat; Leblebicioglu, Hakan; Khan, Anis; Elkady, Abeer; Tanaka, Yasuhito; Mizokami, Masashi

    2013-02-01

    The role of hepatitis B virus (HBV) genetics in the clinical manifestations of infection is being increasingly recognized. Genotype D is one of eight currently recognized major HBV genotypes. The virus is ubiquitous worldwide, but shows different features in different regions. One hundred and ninety-eight patients with chronic HBV infection were enrolled in this study, 38 of whom had been diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver and/or hepatocellular carcinoma. HBV DNA was isolated from the patients' blood samples and the entire genome and/or the basal core promoter/core promoter region sequenced. Phylogenetic analysis of the complete genomes revealed that subgenotype D1 is the most prevalent subgenotype in Turkey, but there was no definite phylogenetic grouping according to geography for isolates from different regions within Turkey, or for isolates in Turkey relative to other parts of the world. Turkish isolates tended to be genetically similar to European and central Asian isolates. Overall, HBV-infection in Turkey appears to be characterized by early HBeAg seroconversion, a high incidence of the A1896 core promoter mutation and a small viral load. Genotype D characteristic mutations A1757 and T1764/G1766 were found in the BCP region. T1773 was associated with T1764/G1766 and a larger viral load. In conclusion, infection with HBV genotype D in Turkey has a similar clinical outcome to that of Europe and central Asia. Genotypic mutations in genotype D may be linked with disease prognosis in Turkey, but further studies with higher sample numbers and balanced clinical groups are needed to confirm this.

  20. Low frequency of mutations in the core promoter and precore regions of hepatitis B virus in anti-HBe positive Brazilian carriers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Niel Christian

    2001-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Mutations in the core promoter and precore regions of the hepatitis B virus (HBV genome, notably the double substitution (AGG to TGA at nt positions 1762-1764 in the core promoter, and the precore stop codon mutation G to A at nt 1896, can often explain the anti-HBe phenotype in chronic carriers. However, the A1896 mutation is restricted to HBV isolates that have T at nt 1858. The double substitution at positions 1762-1764 has been described to occur preferentially in patients infected with strains showing C instead of T at nt 1858. Results HBV DNAs from 29 anti-HBe Brazilian samples were characterized by nucleotide sequencing of PCR products from precore region. Among them, 18 isolates presented C at nt 1858 (mostly genotype A strains. The 11 remaining isolates (genotypes D and F had T1858. The stop codon mutation at nt 1896 was found in seven isolates (24% of the total and 63% of the isolates that had T1858. The frequency of the double substitution at positions 1762-1764 was surprisingly low (20% among C1858 isolates. An association between A1896 and TGA 1762-1764 mutations was observed among genotype D isolates: these showed either none of the two mutations or both. Furthermore, strains mutated at positions 1896 and/or 1762-1764 also presented an elevated number of other, less common substitutions in the core promoter and precore regions. Conclusions The data reported here are not in accordance with some reports from other parts of the world. In half of the isolates, none of the mutations previously described could explain the anti-HBe phenotype.

  1. Estradiol differently affects melanin synthesis of malignant and normal melanocytes: a relationship with clock and clock-controlled genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poletini, Maristela Oliveira; de Assis, Leonardo Vinicius Monteiro; Moraes, Maria Nathalia; Castrucci, Ana Maria de Lauro

    2016-10-01

    Melanin production within melanocytes is regulated, among others, by estradiol, whose effects on melanogenesis are still not completely elucidated. Here we show that although 10(-7) M 17β-estradiol (E2) increased tyrosinase mRNA levels in B16-F10 malignant melanocytes, there was a transient decrease and abolishment of the temporal variation of melanin content. Both parameters were much higher in the malignant than in normal Melan-a cells. Considering that silencing clock machinery in human melanocytes increases melanogenesis, we investigated clock gene expression in those cell lines. Except for Melan-a Bmal1 and B16-F10 Per2 expression of control cells, Per1, Per2, and Bmal1 expression increased independently of cell type or E2 treatment after 24 h. However, melanoma cells showed a marked increase in Per1 and Bma11 expression in response to E2 at the same time points, what may rule out E2 as a synchronizer agent since the expression of those genes were not in antiphase. Next, we investigated the expression of Xpa, a clock-controlled gene, which in Melan-a cells, peaked at 18 h, and E2 treatment shifted this peak to 24 h, whereas B16-F10 Xpa expression peaked at 24 h in both control and E2 group, and it was higher compared to Melan-a cells in both groups. Therefore, malignant and normal melanocytes display profound differences on core elements of the local clock, and how they respond to E2, what is most probably determinant of the differences seen on melanin synthesis and Tyrosinase and Xpa expression. Understanding these processes at the molecular level could bring new strategies to treat melanoma.

  2. Melanin, a promising radioprotector: Mechanisms of actions in a mice model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kunwar, A., E-mail: amitbio@rediffmail.com [Radiation and Photochemistry Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Trombay, Mumbai 400085 (India); Adhikary, B. [Radiation and Photochemistry Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Trombay, Mumbai 400085 (India); Jayakumar, S. [Radiation Biology and Health Sciences Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Trombay, Mumbai 400085 (India); Barik, A. [Radiation and Photochemistry Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Trombay, Mumbai 400085 (India); Chattopadhyay, S. [Bio-Organic Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Trombay, Mumbai 400085 (India); Raghukumar, S. [Myko Tech Private Limited, Dona Paula, Goa‐403004 (India); Priyadarsini, K.I., E-mail: kindira@barc.gov.in [Radiation and Photochemistry Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Trombay, Mumbai 400085 (India)

    2012-10-15

    The radioprotective effect of extracellular melanin, a naturally occurring pigment, isolated from the fungus Gliocephalotrichum simplex was examined in BALB/C mice, and the probable mechanism of action was established. At an effective dose of 50 mg/kg body weight, melanin exhibited both prophylactic and mitigative activities, increasing the 30-day survival of mice by 100% and 60%, respectively, after exposure to radiation (7 Gy, whole body irradiation (WBI)). The protective activity of melanin was primarily due to inhibition of radiation-induced hematopoietic damages as evidenced by improvement in spleen parameters such as index, total cellularity, endogenous colony forming units, and maintenance of circulatory white blood cells and platelet counts. Melanin also reversed the radiation-induced decrease in ERK phosphorylation in splenic tissue, which may be the key feature in its radioprotective action. Additionally, our results indicated that the sustained activation of AKT, JNK and P38 proteins in splenic tissue of melanin pre-treated group may also play a secondary role. This was also supported by the fact that melanin could prevent apoptosis in splenic tissue by decreasing BAX/Bcl-XL ratio, and increasing the expressions of the proliferation markers (PCNA and Cyclin D1), compared to the radiation control group. Melanin also reduced the oxidative stress in hepatic tissue and abrogated immune imbalance by reducing the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL6 and TNFα). In conclusion, our results confirmed that fungal melanin is a very effective radioprotector against WBI and the probable mechanisms of radioprotection are due to modulation in pro-survival (ERK) signaling, prevention of oxidative stress and immunomodulation. -- Highlights: ► Melanin showed promising radioprotection under pre and post irradiation condition. ► Melanin protects the hematopoietic system from radiation induced damage. ► Melanin modulates pro-survival pathways, immune system

  3. From tyrosine to melanin: Signaling pathways and factors regulating melanogenesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zuzanna Rzepka

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Melanins are natural pigments of skin, hair and eyes and can be classified into two main types: brown to black eumelanin and yellow to reddish-brown pheomelanin. Biosynthesis of melanins takes place in melanosomes, which are specialized cytoplasmic organelles of melanocytes - dendritic cells located in the basal layer of the epidermis, uveal tract of the eye, hair follicles, as well as in the inner ear, central nervous system and heart. Melanogenesis is a multistep process and begins with the conversion of amino acid L-tyrosine to DOPAquinone. The addition of cysteine or glutathione to DOPAquinone leads to the intermediates formation, followed by subsequent transformations and polymerization to the final product, pheomelanin. In the absence of thiol compounds DOPAquinone undergoes an intramolecular cyclization and oxidation to form DOPAchrome, which is then converted to 5,6-dihydroksyindole (DHI or 5,6-dihydroxyindole-2-carboxylic acid (DHICA. Eumelanin is formed by polymerization of DHI and DHICA and their quinones. Regulation of melanogenesis is achieved by physical and biochemical factors. The article presents the intracellular signaling pathways: cAMP/PKA/CREB/MITF cascade, MAP kinases cascade, PLC/DAG/PKCβ cascade and NO/cGMP/PKG cascade, which are involved in the regulation of expression and activity of the melanogenesis-related proteins by ultraviolet radiation and endogenous agents (cytokines, hormones. Activity of the key melanogenic enzyme, tyrosinase, is also affected by pH and temperature. Many pharmacologically active substances are able to inhibit or stimulate melanin biosynthesis, as evidenced by in vitro studies on cultured pigment cells.

  4. The core planar cell polarity gene prickle interacts with flamingo to promote sensory axon advance in the Drosophila embryo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mrkusich, Eli M; Flanagan, Dustin J; Whitington, Paul M

    2011-10-01

    The atypical cadherin Drosophila protein Flamingo and its vertebrate homologues play widespread roles in the regulation of both dendrite and axon growth. However, little is understood about the molecular mechanisms that underpin these functions. Whereas flamingo interacts with a well-defined group of genes in regulating planar cell polarity, previous studies have uncovered little evidence that the other core planar cell polarity genes are involved in regulation of neurite growth. We present data in this study showing that the planar cell polarity gene prickle interacts with flamingo in regulating sensory axon advance at a key choice point - the transition between the peripheral nervous system and the central nervous system. The cytoplasmic tail of the Flamingo protein is not required for this interaction. Overexpression of another core planar cell polarity gene dishevelled produces a similar phenotype to prickle mutants, suggesting that this gene may also play a role in regulation of sensory axon advance.

  5. Odontogenic Cyst with Verrucous Proliferation Exhibiting Melanin Pigmentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soni, Krupa Mehta; Ahmed, Junaid; Bhat, Keshava; Kottieth Pallam, Nandita; Lewis, Amitha Juanita

    2017-01-01

    Verrucous proliferation arising from odontogenic cysts is a rare entity. We report an unusual case of an infected odontogenic cyst with verrucous proliferation and melanin pigmentation in a 13-year-old male patient who presented with an intraoral swelling in relation to impacted teeth 26 and 27. The enucleated lesion was diagnosed as an odontogenic keratocyst and the patient died within two years of presentation due to multiple recurrences. The clinical, radiological, and microscopic features of the lesion are presented with an attempt to discuss the etiopathogenesis. The case hereby reported is uncommon with only eight cases reported in the literature. PMID:28409045

  6. Modelling and verification of melanin concentration on human skin type

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Karsten, AE

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available -brown colour) and pheomelanin (yellow-reddish 11 colour) (3,4). Melanin is synthesized within melanosomes inside melanocytes located in the 12 basal layer of the epidermis and the mature melanosomes get transferred via dendrites to the 13 keratinocytes... in die epidermis where they are responsible for skin photoprotection (3). 14 It is well documented that the absorption and scattering of light through skin tissue 15 depends on the skin?s optical properties (see for example studies by Tuchin (5...

  7. Is there any difference in the photobiological properties of melanins isolated from human blue and brown eyes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menon, I A; Basu, P K; Persad, S; Avaria, M; Felix, C C; Kalyanaraman, B

    1987-01-01

    Investigations were carried out to determine whether the melanin present in the blue and brown eyes were eumelanin, the melanin present in black hair and dark skin, or pheomelanin, the melanin present in red hair and the skin of people with red hair. Our results showed that UV-visible irradiation of blue or brown eye melanin did not produce any superoxide. Irradiation of 51Cr-labelled Ehrlich ascites carcinoma cells in the presence of blue or brown eye melanin did not produce significant cell lysis. The electron spin resonance (ESR) signals of blue and brown eye melanins were very similar to those of eumelanin. Comparison of these findings with our previous results indicated that the blue and brown eye melanins are essentially eumelanin. The ESR signals further suggested that in the case of both blue and brown eye melanins the iris, ciliary body, choroid, and retinal pigment epithelium did not differ. PMID:2820463

  8. Core 3 mucin-type O-glycan restoration in colorectal cancer cells promotes MUC1/p53/miR-200c-dependent epithelial identity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ye, J; Wei, X; Shang, Y; Pan, Q; Yang, M; Tian, Y; He, Y; Peng, Z; Chen, L; Chen, W; Wang, R

    2017-07-24

    The attachment of cell-surface carbohydrates to proteins mediated by the amino acids serine or threonine (O-glycan) is involved in tumor metastasis; the roles of O-glycans vary depending on their structure, but the detailed mechanisms by which O-glycans trigger signaling to control tumor metastasis are largely unknown. In this study, we found that the reduced expression of core 3 synthase correlated with metastasis to lymph nodes and distant organs, resulting in poor prognosis for colorectal cancer (CRC) patients. Mechanically, we revealed that mucin-type core 3 O-glycan was synthesized at the membrane-tethered MUC1 N terminus because of core 3 synthase expression in colon cancer cells. This further inhibited the translocation of MUC1-C to the nucleus, initiated p53 gene transcription that was dependent on the inhibition of MUC1-C nucleus translocation, activated p53-mediated miR-200c expression and resulted in mesenchymal-epithelial transition (MET). Inhibition of MUC1 via small interfering RNA (siRNA) in re-expressed core 3 synthase colon cancer cells further inhibited MUC1-C nucleus translocation, increased p53 and miR-200c expression, and enhanced MET. However, inhibition of p53 via siRNA or miR-200c via miR-200c inhibitor in re-expressed core 3 synthase colon cancer cells promoted the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in a reversible manner. Core 3 synthase mRNA levels and the p53 mRNA levels or miR-200c levels in the colon cancerous samples were positively correlated. Our findings suggest a novel mechanism linking mucin-type core 3 O-glycan to the EMT-MET plasticity of CRC cells via MUC1/p53/miR-200c-dependent signaling cascade and shed light on therapeutic strategies to treat this malignancy.Oncogene advance online publication, 24 July 2017; doi:10.1038/onc.2017.241.

  9. Condition-dependent expression of melanin-based coloration in the Eurasian kestrel

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Piault, Romain; van den Brink, Valentijn; Roulin, Alexandre

    2012-01-01

    Melanin is the most common pigment in animal integuments and is responsible for some of the most striking ornaments. A central tenet of sexual selection theory states that melanin-based traits can signal absolute individual quality in any environment only if their expression is condition-dependent.

  10. CONSTITUTIVE MELANIN IN THE CELL WALL OF THE ETIOLOGIC AGENT OF LOBO'S DISEASE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    TABORDA Valeria B.A.

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available Lobo's disease is a chronic granulomatous disease caused by the obligate pathogenic fungus, whose cell walls contain constitutive melanin. In contrast, melanin does not occur in the cell walls of Paracoccidioides brasiliensis when stained by the Fontana-Masson stain.

  11. Condition-dependent expression of melanin-based coloration in the Eurasian kestrel

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Piault, Romain; van den Brink, Valentijn; Roulin, Alexandre

    Melanin is the most common pigment in animal integuments and is responsible for some of the most striking ornaments. A central tenet of sexual selection theory states that melanin-based traits can signal absolute individual quality in any environment only if their expression is condition-dependent.

  12. (Pheo)melanin photosensitizes UVA-induced DNA damage in cultured human melanocytes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wenczl, E.; Schans, G.P. van der; Roza, L.; Kolb, R.M.; Timmerman, A.J.; Smit, N.P.M.; Pavel, S.; Schothorst, A.A.

    1998-01-01

    The question of whether melanins are photoprotecting and/or photosensitizing in human skin cells continues to be debated. To evaluate the role of melanin upon UVA irradiation, DNA single-strand breaks (ssb) were measured in human melanocytes differing only in the amount of pigment produced by

  13. (Pheo)melanin photosensitizes UVA-induced DNA damage in cultured human melanocytes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wenczl, E.; Schans, G.P. van der; Roza, L.; Kolb, R.M.; Timmerman, A.J.; Smit, N.P.M.; Pavel, S.; Schothorst, A.A.

    1998-01-01

    The question of whether melanins are photoprotecting and/or photosensitizing in human skin cells continues to be debated. To evaluate the role of melanin upon UVA irradiation, DNA single-strand breaks (ssb) were measured in human melanocytes differing only in the amount of pigment produced by cultur

  14. Melanins Protect Sporothrix brasiliensis and Sporothrix schenckii from the Antifungal Effects of Terbinafine.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Almeida-Paes

    Full Text Available Terbinafine is a recommended therapeutic alternative for patients with sporotrichosis who cannot use itraconazole due to drug interactions or side effects. Melanins are involved in resistance to antifungal drugs and Sporothrix species produce three different types of melanin. Therefore, in this study we evaluated whether Sporothrix melanins impact the efficacy of antifungal drugs. Minimal inhibitory concentrations (MIC and minimal fungicidal concentrations (MFC of two Sporothrix brasiliensis and four Sporothrix schenckii strains grown in the presence of the melanin precursors L-DOPA and L-tyrosine were similar to the MIC determined by the CLSI standard protocol for S. schenckii susceptibility to amphotericin B, ketoconazole, itraconazole or terbinafine. When MICs were determined in the presence of inhibitors to three pathways of melanin synthesis, we observed, in four strains, an increase in terbinafine susceptibility in the presence of tricyclazole, a DHN-melanin inhibitor. In addition, one S. schenckii strain grown in the presence of L-DOPA had a higher MFC value when compared to the control. Growth curves in presence of 2×MIC concentrations of terbinafine showed that pyomelanin and, to a lesser extent, eumelanin were able to protect the fungi against the fungicidal effect of this antifungal drug. Our results suggest that melanin protects the major pathogenic species of the Sporothrix complex from the effects of terbinafine and that the development of new antifungal drugs targeting melanin synthesis may improve sporotrichosis therapies.

  15. Melanins Protect Sporothrix brasiliensis and Sporothrix schenckii from the Antifungal Effects of Terbinafine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida-Paes, Rodrigo; Figueiredo-Carvalho, Maria Helena Galdino; Brito-Santos, Fábio; Almeida-Silva, Fernando; Oliveira, Manoel Marques Evangelista; Zancopé-Oliveira, Rosely Maria

    2016-01-01

    Terbinafine is a recommended therapeutic alternative for patients with sporotrichosis who cannot use itraconazole due to drug interactions or side effects. Melanins are involved in resistance to antifungal drugs and Sporothrix species produce three different types of melanin. Therefore, in this study we evaluated whether Sporothrix melanins impact the efficacy of antifungal drugs. Minimal inhibitory concentrations (MIC) and minimal fungicidal concentrations (MFC) of two Sporothrix brasiliensis and four Sporothrix schenckii strains grown in the presence of the melanin precursors L-DOPA and L-tyrosine were similar to the MIC determined by the CLSI standard protocol for S. schenckii susceptibility to amphotericin B, ketoconazole, itraconazole or terbinafine. When MICs were determined in the presence of inhibitors to three pathways of melanin synthesis, we observed, in four strains, an increase in terbinafine susceptibility in the presence of tricyclazole, a DHN-melanin inhibitor. In addition, one S. schenckii strain grown in the presence of L-DOPA had a higher MFC value when compared to the control. Growth curves in presence of 2×MIC concentrations of terbinafine showed that pyomelanin and, to a lesser extent, eumelanin were able to protect the fungi against the fungicidal effect of this antifungal drug. Our results suggest that melanin protects the major pathogenic species of the Sporothrix complex from the effects of terbinafine and that the development of new antifungal drugs targeting melanin synthesis may improve sporotrichosis therapies. PMID:27031728

  16. Melanins Protect Sporothrix brasiliensis and Sporothrix schenckii from the Antifungal Effects of Terbinafine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida-Paes, Rodrigo; Figueiredo-Carvalho, Maria Helena Galdino; Brito-Santos, Fábio; Almeida-Silva, Fernando; Oliveira, Manoel Marques Evangelista; Zancopé-Oliveira, Rosely Maria

    2016-01-01

    Terbinafine is a recommended therapeutic alternative for patients with sporotrichosis who cannot use itraconazole due to drug interactions or side effects. Melanins are involved in resistance to antifungal drugs and Sporothrix species produce three different types of melanin. Therefore, in this study we evaluated whether Sporothrix melanins impact the efficacy of antifungal drugs. Minimal inhibitory concentrations (MIC) and minimal fungicidal concentrations (MFC) of two Sporothrix brasiliensis and four Sporothrix schenckii strains grown in the presence of the melanin precursors L-DOPA and L-tyrosine were similar to the MIC determined by the CLSI standard protocol for S. schenckii susceptibility to amphotericin B, ketoconazole, itraconazole or terbinafine. When MICs were determined in the presence of inhibitors to three pathways of melanin synthesis, we observed, in four strains, an increase in terbinafine susceptibility in the presence of tricyclazole, a DHN-melanin inhibitor. In addition, one S. schenckii strain grown in the presence of L-DOPA had a higher MFC value when compared to the control. Growth curves in presence of 2×MIC concentrations of terbinafine showed that pyomelanin and, to a lesser extent, eumelanin were able to protect the fungi against the fungicidal effect of this antifungal drug. Our results suggest that melanin protects the major pathogenic species of the Sporothrix complex from the effects of terbinafine and that the development of new antifungal drugs targeting melanin synthesis may improve sporotrichosis therapies.

  17. Color reduction of melanin by lysosomal and peroxisomal enzymes isolated from mammalian cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Dong Jun; Sekhon, Simranjeet Singh; Yoon, Jihee; Kim, Yang-Hoon; Min, Jiho

    2016-02-01

    Lysosomes and peroxisomes are organelles with many functions in all eukaryotic cells. Lysosomes contain hydrolytic enzymes (lysozyme) that degrade molecules, whereas peroxisomes contain enzymes such as catalase that convert hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) to water and oxygen and neutralize toxicity. In contrast, melanin is known as a helpful element to protect the skin against harmful ultraviolet rays. However, a high quantity of melanin leads to hyperpigmentation or skin cancer in human. New materials have already been discovered to inhibit tyrosinase in melanogenesis; however, melanin reduction does not suggest their preparation. In this study, we report that the color intensity because of melanin decreased by the cellular activation of lysosomes and peroxisomes. An increase in the superficial intensity of lysosome and peroxisome activities of HeLa cells was observed. In addition, a decrease in the amount of melanin has also been observed in mammalian cells without using any other chemical, showing that the process can work in vivo for treating melanin. Therefore, the results of this study indicate that the amount of melanin decreases by the lysosome and peroxisome activity after entering the cells, and functional organelles are effective in color reduction. This mechanism can be used in vivo for treating melanin.

  18. Monte Carlo investigation on quantifying the retinal pigment epithelium melanin concentration by photoacoustic ophthalmoscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shu, Xiao; Liu, Wenzhong; Zhang, Hao F

    2015-10-01

    The retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) melanin plays an important role in maintaining normal visual functions. A decrease in the RPE melanin concentration with aging is believed to be associated with several blinding diseases, including age-related macular degeneration. Quantifying the RPE melanin noninvasively is therefore important in evaluating the retinal health and aging conditions. Photoacoustic ophthalmoscopy (PAOM), as an optical absorption-based imaging technology, can potentially be applied to measure variations in the RPE melanin if the relationship between the detected photoacoustic (PA) signal amplitudes and the RPE melanin concentrations can be established. In this work, we tested the feasibility of using PA signals from retinal blood vessels as references to measure RPE melanin variation using Monte Carlo (MC) simulation. The influences from PAOM axial resolution, the depth and diameter of the retinal blood vessel, and the RPE thickness were examined. We proposed a calibration scheme by relating detected PA signals to the RPE melanin concentrations, and we found that the scheme is robust to these tested parameters. This study suggests that PAOM has the capability of quantitatively measuring the RPE melanin in vivo.

  19. Specific mutations in the enhancer II/core promoter/precore regions of hepatitis B virus subgenotype C2 in Korean patients with hepatocellular carcinoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Ja Kyung; Chang, Hye Young; Lee, Jung Min; Baatarkhuu, Oidov; Yoon, Young Joon; Park, Jun Yong; Kim, Do Young; Han, Kwang-Hyub; Chon, Chae Yoon; Ahn, Sang Hoon

    2009-06-01

    Recently, hepatitis B virus (HBV) genotypes and mutations have been reported to be related to hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). This cross-sectional case-control study examined the relationship between HCC and mutations in the enhancer II/core promoter and precore regions of HBV by comparing 135 Korean HCC patients infected with HBV genotype C2 (HBV/C2; HCC group) with 135 age-, sex-, and hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg) status-matched patients without HCC (non- HCC group). Age and sex were also matched between HBeAg-positive and -negative patients. The prevalence of T1653, A1689, V1753, T1762/A1764, T1846, A1850, C1858, and A1896 mutations was evaluated in this population. The prevalence of the T1653 mutation in the box alpha region, the T1689 [corrected] mutation in between the box alpha and beta regions, and the T1762/A1764 mutations in the basal core promoter region was significantly higher in the HCC group compared to the non-HCC group (8.9% vs. 2.2%, P = 0.017; 19.3% vs. 4.4%, P HBV/C2.

  20. EFFECT OF CADMIUM(II) ON FREE RADICALS IN DOPA-MELANIN TESTED BY EPR SPECTROSCOPY.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zdybel, Magdalena; Pilawa, Barbara; Chodurek, Ewa

    2015-01-01

    Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy may be applied to examine interactions of melanin with metal ions and drugs. In this work EPR method was used to examination of changes in free radical system of DOPA-melanin--the model eumelanin after complexing with diamagnetic cadmium(II) ions. Cadmium(II) may affect free radicals in melanin and drugs binding by this polymer, so the knowledge of modification of properties and free radical concentration in melanin is important to pharmacy. The effect of cadmium(II) in different concentrations on free radicals in DOPA-melanin was determined. EPR spectra of DOPA-melanin, and DOPA-melanin complexes with cadmium(II) were measured by an X-band (9.3 GHz) EPR spectrometer produced by Radiopan (Poznań, Poland) and the Rapid Scan Unit from Jagmar (Krak6w, Poland). The DOPA (3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine) to metal ions molar ratios in the reaction mixtures were 2:1, 1:1, and 1: 2. High concentrations of o-semiquinone (g ~2.0040) free radicals (~10(21)-10(22) spin/g) characterize DOPA-melanin and its complexes with cadmium(II). Formation of melanin complexes with cadmium(II) increase free radical concentration in DOPA-melanin. The highest free radical concentration was obtained for DOPA-melanin-cadmium(II) (1:1) complexes. Broad EPR lines with linewidths: 0.37-0.73 mT, were measured. Linewidths increase after binding of cadmium(II) to melanin. Changes of integral intensities and linewidths with increasing microwave power indicate the homogeneous broadening of EPR lines, independently on the metal ion concentration. Slow spin-lattice relaxation processes existed in all the tested samples, their EPR lines saturated at low microwave powers. Cadmium(II) causes fastening of spin-lattice relaxation processes in DOPA-melanin. The EPR results bring to light the effect of cadmium(II) on free radicals in melanin, and probably as the consequence on drug binding to eumelanin.

  1. Madecassoside Inhibits Melanin Synthesis by Blocking Ultraviolet-Induced Inflammation

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    Eunsun Jung

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Madecassoside (MA, a pentacyclic triterpene isolated from Centella asitica (L., is used as a therapeutic agent in wound healing and also as an anti-inflammatory and anti-aging agent. However, the involvement of MA in skin-pigmentation has not been reported. This study was conducted to investigate the effects of MA on ultraviolet (UV-induced melanogenesis and mechanisms in a co-culture system of keratinocytes and melanocytes. MA significantly inhibited UVR-induced melanin synthesis and melanosome transfer in the co-culture system. These effects were further demonstrated by the MA-induced inhibition of protease-activated receptor-2 expression and its signaling pathway, cyclooxygenase-2, prostaglandin E2 and prostaglandin F2 alpha in keratinocytes. The clinical efficacy of MA was confirmed on artificially tanned human skin. MA significantly reduced UV-induced melanin index at 8 weeks after topical application. Overall, the study demonstrated significant benefits of MA use in the inhibition of hyperpigmentation caused by UV irradiation.

  2. Hesperetin induces melanin production in adult human epidermal melanocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Usach, Iris; Taléns-Visconti, Raquel; Magraner-Pardo, Lorena; Peris, José-Esteban

    2015-06-01

    One of the major sources of flavonoids for humans are citrus fruits, hesperidin being the predominant flavonoid. Hesperetin (HSP), the aglycon of hesperidin, has been reported to provide health benefits such as antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anticarcinogenic effects. However, the effect of HSP on skin pigmentation is not clear. Some authors have found that HSP induces melanogenesis in murine B16-F10 melanoma cells, which, if extrapolated to in vivo conditions, might protect skin against photodamage. Since the effect of HSP on normal melanocytes could be different to that observed on melanoma cells, the described effect of HSP on murine melanoma cells has been compared to the effect obtained using normal human melanocytes. HSP concentrations of 25 and 50 µM induced melanin synthesis and tyrosinase activity in human melanocytes in a concentration-dependent manner. Compared to control melanocytes, 25 µM HSP increased melanin production and tyrosinase activity 1.4-fold (p melanocyte cultures could be reproduced on human skin.

  3. Role of Melanin in Melanocyte Dysregulation of Reactive Oxygen Species

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    Noah C. Jenkins

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available We have recently reported a potential alternative tumor suppressor function for p16 relating to its capacity to regulate oxidative stress and observed that oxidative dysregulation in p16-depleted cells was most profound in melanocytes, compared to keratinocytes or fibroblasts. Moreover, in the absence of p16 depletion or exogenous oxidative insult, melanocytes exhibited significantly higher basal levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS than these other epidermal cell types. Given the role of oxidative stress in melanoma development, we speculated that this increased susceptibility of melanocytes to oxidative stress (and greater reliance on p16 for suppression of ROS may explain why genetic compromise of p16 is more commonly associated with predisposition to melanoma rather than other cancers. Here we show that the presence of melanin accounts for this differential oxidative stress in normal and p16-depleted melanocytes. Thus the presence of melanin in the skin appears to be a double-edged sword: it protects melanocytes as well as neighboring keratinocytes in the skin through its capacity to absorb UV radiation, but its synthesis in melanocytes results in higher levels of intracellular ROS that may increase melanoma susceptibility.

  4. Comparison of Antioxidant Activities of Melanin Fractions from Chestnut Shell

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    Zeng-Yu Yao

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Chestnut shell melanin can be used as a colorant and antioxidant, and fractionated into three fractions (Fr. 1, Fr. 2, and Fr. 3 with different physicochemical properties. Antioxidant activities of the fractions were comparatively evaluated for the first time. The fractions exhibited different antioxidative potential in different evaluation systems. Fr. 1, which is only soluble in alkaline water, had the strongest peroxidation inhibition and superoxide anion scavenging activity; Fr. 2, which is soluble in alkaline water and hydrophilic organic solvents but insoluble in neutral and acidic water, had the greatest power to chelate ferrous ions; and Fr. 3, which is soluble both in hydrophilic organic solvents and in water at any pH conditions, had the greatest hydroxyl (·OH and 1,1-diphenyl-2-picryl-hydrazyl (DPPH· radicals scavenging abilities, reducing power, and phenolic content. The pigment fractions were superior to butylated hydroxytolune (BHT in ·OH and DPPH· scavenging and to ethylene diamine tetraacetic acid (EDTA in the Fe2+–chelation. They were inferior to BHT in peroxidation inhibition and O2·− scavenging and reducing power. However, BHT is a synthetic antioxidant and cannot play the colorant role. The melanin fractions might be used as effective biological antioxidant colorants.

  5. Bioinspired near-infrared-excited sensing platform for in vitro antioxidant capacity assay based on upconversion nanoparticles and a dopamine-melanin hybrid system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Dong; Chen, Chuan; Ke, Xuebin; Kang, Ning; Shen, Yuqing; Liu, Yongliang; Zhou, Xi; Wang, Hongjun; Chen, Changqing; Ren, Lei

    2015-02-11

    A novel core-shell structure based on upconversion fluorescent nanoparticles (UCNPs) and dopamine-melanin has been developed for evaluation of the antioxidant capacity of biological fluids. In this approach, dopamine-melanin nanoshells facilely formed on the surface of UCNPs act as ultraefficient quenchers for upconversion fluorescence, contributing to a photoinduced electron-transfer mechanism. This spontaneous oxidative polymerization of the dopamine-induced quenching effect could be effectively prevented by the presence of various antioxidants (typically biothiols, ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), and Trolox). The chemical response of the UCNPs@dopamine-melanin hybrid system exhibited great selectivity and sensitivity toward antioxidants relative to other compounds at 100-fold higher concentration. A satisfactory correlation was established between the ratio of the "anti-quenching" fluorescence intensity and the concentration of antioxidants. Besides the response of the upconversion fluorescence signal, a specific evaluation process for antioxidants could be visualized by the color change from colorless to dark gray accompanied by the spontaneous oxidation of dopamine. The near-infrared (NIR)-excited UCNP-based antioxidant capacity assay platform was further used to evaluate the antioxidant capacity of cell extracts and human plasma, and satisfactory sensitivity, repeatability, and recovery rate were obtained. This approach features easy preparation, fluorescence/visual dual mode detection, high specificity to antioxidants, and enhanced sensitivity with NIR excitation, showing great potential for screening and quantitative evaluation of antioxidants in biological systems.

  6. Multimodal microscopy and the stepwise multi-photon activation fluorescence of melanin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Zhenhua

    The author's work is divided into three aspects: multimodal microscopy, stepwise multi-photon activation fluorescence (SMPAF) of melanin, and customized-profile lenses (CPL) for on-axis laser scanners, which will be introduced respectively. A multimodal microscope provides the ability to image samples with multiple modalities on the same stage, which incorporates the benefits of all modalities. The multimodal microscopes developed in this dissertation are the Keck 3D fusion multimodal microscope 2.0 (3DFM 2.0), upgraded from the old 3DFM with improved performance and flexibility, and the multimodal microscope for targeting small particles (the "Target" system). The control systems developed for both microscopes are low-cost and easy-to-build, with all components off-the-shelf. The control system have not only significantly decreased the complexity and size of the microscope, but also increased the pixel resolution and flexibility. The SMPAF of melanin, activated by a continuous-wave (CW) mode near-infrared (NIR) laser, has potential applications for a low-cost and reliable method of detecting melanin. The photophysics of melanin SMPAF has been studied by theoretical analysis of the excitation process and investigation of the spectra, activation threshold, and photon number absorption of melanin SMPAF. SMPAF images of melanin in mouse hair and skin, mouse melanoma, and human black and white hairs are compared with images taken by conventional multi-photon fluorescence microscopy (MPFM) and confocal reflectance microscopy (CRM). SMPAF images significantly increase specificity and demonstrate the potential to increase sensitivity for melanin detection compared to MPFM images and CRM images. Employing melanin SMPAF imaging to detect melanin inside human skin in vivo has been demonstrated, which proves the effectiveness of melanin detection using SMPAF for medical purposes. Selective melanin ablation with micrometer resolution has been presented using the Target system

  7. Data on melanin production in B16F1 melanoma cells in the presence of emu oil

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    Minoru Ito

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Here, we present data on the effects of emu oil, obtained from emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae fat deposits, on melanogenesis in B16F1 murine melanoma cells. The cells were cultured in media containing different concentrations of emu oil, and the melanin content of these cells was measured using a microplate reader. Next, melanin content was measured for cells cultured with α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone. This article reports the different melanin contents as μg melanin/mg cellular protein, by using bar graphs with error bars. The present data imply that emu oil reduces the cellular melanin production.

  8. Chemical, experimental, and morphological evidence for diagenetically altered melanin in exceptionally preserved fossils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colleary, Caitlin; Dolocan, Andrei; Gardner, James; Singh, Suresh; Wuttke, Michael; Rabenstein, Renate; Habersetzer, Jörg; Schaal, Stephan; Feseha, Mulugeta; Clemens, Matthew; Jacobs, Bonnie F; Currano, Ellen D; Jacobs, Louis L; Sylvestersen, Rene Lyng; Gabbott, Sarah E; Vinther, Jakob

    2015-10-13

    In living organisms, color patterns, behavior, and ecology are closely linked. Thus, detection of fossil pigments may permit inferences about important aspects of ancient animal ecology and evolution. Melanin-bearing melanosomes were suggested to preserve as organic residues in exceptionally preserved fossils, retaining distinct morphology that is associated with aspects of original color patterns. Nevertheless, these oblong and spherical structures have also been identified as fossilized bacteria. To date, chemical studies have not directly considered the effects of diagenesis on melanin preservation, and how this may influence its identification. Here we use time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry to identify and chemically characterize melanin in a diverse sample of previously unstudied extant and fossil taxa, including fossils with notably different diagenetic histories and geologic ages. We document signatures consistent with melanin preservation in fossils ranging from feathers, to mammals, to amphibians. Using principal component analyses, we characterize putative mixtures of eumelanin and phaeomelanin in both fossil and extant samples. Surprisingly, both extant and fossil amphibians generally exhibit melanosomes with a mixed eumelanin/phaeomelanin composition rather than pure eumelanin, as assumed previously. We argue that experimental maturation of modern melanin samples replicates diagenetic chemical alteration of melanin observed in fossils. This refutes the hypothesis that such fossil microbodies could be bacteria, and demonstrates that melanin is widely responsible for the organic soft tissue outlines in vertebrates found at exceptional fossil localities, thus allowing for the reconstruction of certain aspects of original pigment patterns.

  9. Melanins: Skin Pigments and Much More—Types, Structural Models, Biological Functions, and Formation Routes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Solano

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available This review presents a general view of all types of melanin in all types of organisms. Melanin is frequently considered just an animal cutaneous pigment and is treated separately from similar fungal or bacterial pigments. Similarities concerning the phenol precursors and common patterns in the formation routes are discussed. All melanins are formed in a first enzymatically-controlled phase, generally a phenolase, and a second phase characterized by an uncontrolled polymerization of the oxidized intermediates. In that second phase, quinones derived from phenol oxidation play a crucial role. Concerning functions, all melanins show a common feature, a protective role, but they are not merely photoprotective pigments against UV sunlight. In pathogenic microorganisms, melanization becomes a virulence factor since melanin protects microbial cells from defense mechanisms in the infected host. In turn, some melanins are formed in tissues where sunlight radiation is not a potential threat. Then, their redox, metal chelating, or free radical scavenging properties are more important than light absorption capacity. These pigments sometimes behave as a double-edged sword, and inhibition of melanogenesis is desirable in different cells. Melanin biochemistry is an active field of research from dermatological, biomedical, cosmetical, and microbiological points of view, as well as fruit technology.

  10. Experimental autoimmune anterior uveitis (EAAU): induction by melanin antigen and suppression by various treatments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broekhuyse, R M; Kuhlmann, E D; Winkens, H J

    1993-02-01

    The uveitogenicity of melanin has been a controversial subject for a long time, presumably as a result of the use of ill-defined preparations in the experiments. We have developed procedures for the preparation of purified uveitogenic melanins from the retinal pigment epithelium and choroid that are free from pathogenic retinal photoreceptor proteins. The active melano-antigen is located at the surface of the melanin granules and is probably identical in both tissues. It retains its pathogenicity in hot polar detergent and during in vitro proteolysis, but it is inactivated by macrophage phagocytosis and hydrolysis in hot hydrochloric acid. Lewis rats immunized with microgram doses of bovine retinal pigment epithelial or choroidal melanin develop severe experimental autoimmune anterior uveitis (EAAU) about 10 days later. Retinitis and pinealitis are not observed. Skin melanin prepared in a similar way evokes EAAU as well, but it is only weakly pathogenic. EAAU cannot be transferred by serum, and its development can effectively be inhibited by antibodies to the inciting antigen and by cyclosporin. Vitamin E treatment of the animals causes a delay in its onset. The results indicate that cell-mediated immunity plays a dominant role in the pathogenesis of EAAU. This is the first time it has been shown that purified ocular and skin melanins are able to induce an autoimmune disease. The relevance of this finding for the study of melanin-related immunopathology in man is discussed.

  11. Syndecan-2 regulates melanin synthesis via protein kinase C βII-mediated tyrosinase activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Hyejung; Chung, Heesung; Chang, Sung Eun; Choi, Sora; Han, Inn-Oc; Kang, Duk-Hee; Oh, Eok-Soo

    2014-05-01

    Syndecan-2, a transmembrane heparan sulfate proteoglycan that is highly expressed in melanoma cells, regulates melanoma cell functions (e.g. migration). Since melanoma is a malignant tumor of melanocytes, which largely function to synthesize melanin, we investigated the possible involvement of syndecan-2 in melanogenesis. Syndecan-2 expression was increased in human skin melanoma tissues compared with normal skin. In both mouse and human melanoma cells, siRNA-mediated knockdown of syndecan-2 was associated with reduced melanin synthesis, whereas overexpression of syndecan-2 increased melanin synthesis. Similar effects were also detected in human primary epidermal melanocytes. Syndecan-2 expression did not affect the expression of tyrosinase, a key enzyme in melanin synthesis, but instead enhanced the enzymatic activity of tyrosinase by increasing the membrane and melanosome localization of its regulator, protein kinase CβII. Furthermore, UVB caused increased syndecan-2 expression, and this up-regulation of syndecan-2 was required for UVB-induced melanin synthesis. Taken together, these data suggest that syndecan-2 regulates melanin synthesis and could be a potential therapeutic target for treating melanin-associated diseases. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. A Non-canonical Melanin Biosynthesis Pathway Protects Aspergillus terreus Conidia from Environmental Stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geib, Elena; Gressler, Markus; Viediernikova, Iuliia; Hillmann, Falk; Jacobsen, Ilse D; Nietzsche, Sandor; Hertweck, Christian; Brock, Matthias

    2016-05-19

    Melanins are ubiquitous pigments found in all kingdoms of life. Most organisms use them for protection from environmental stress, although some fungi employ melanins as virulence determinants. The human pathogenic fungus Aspergillus fumigatus and related Ascomycetes produce dihydroxynaphthalene- (DHN) melanin in their spores, the conidia, and use it to inhibit phagolysosome acidification. However, biosynthetic origin of melanin in a related fungus, Aspergillus terreus, has remained a mystery because A. terreus lacks genes for synthesis of DHN-melanin. Here we identify genes coding for an unusual NRPS-like enzyme (MelA) and a tyrosinase (TyrP) that A. terreus expressed under conidiation conditions. We demonstrate that MelA produces aspulvinone E, which is activated for polymerization by TyrP. Functional studies reveal that this new pigment, Asp-melanin, confers resistance against UV light and hampers phagocytosis by soil amoeba. Unexpectedly, Asp-melanin does not inhibit acidification of phagolysosomes, thus likely contributing specifically to survival of A. terreus conidia in acidic environments.

  13. Fruit over sunbed: carotenoid skin colouration is found more attractive than melanin colouration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lefevre, Carmen E; Perrett, David I

    2015-01-01

    Skin colouration appears to play a pivotal part in facial attractiveness. Skin yellowness contributes to an attractive appearance and is influenced both by dietary carotenoids and by melanin. While both increased carotenoid colouration and increased melanin colouration enhance apparent health in Caucasian faces by increasing skin yellowness, it remains unclear, firstly, whether both pigments contribute to attractiveness judgements, secondly, whether one pigment is clearly preferred over the other, and thirdly, whether these effects depend on the sex of the face. Here, in three studies, we examine these questions using controlled facial stimuli transformed to be either high or low in (a) carotenoid colouration, or (b) melanin colouration. We show, firstly, that both increased carotenoid colouration and increased melanin colouration are found attractive compared to lower levels of these pigments. Secondly, we show that carotenoid colouration is consistently preferred over melanin colouration when levels of colouration are matched. In addition, we find an effect of the sex of stimuli with stronger preferences for carotenoids over melanin in female compared to male faces, irrespective of the sex of the observer. These results are interpreted as reflecting preferences for sex-typical skin colouration: men have darker skin than women and high melanization in male faces may further enhance this masculine trait, thus carotenoid colouration is not less desirable, but melanin colouration is relatively more desirable in males compared to females. Taken together, our findings provide further support for a carotenoid-linked health-signalling system that is highly important in mate choice.

  14. Stepwise multiphoton activation fluorescence reveals a new method of melanin detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Zhenhua; Kerimo, Josef; Mega, Yair; DiMarzio, Charles A.

    2013-06-01

    The stepwise multiphoton activated fluorescence (SMPAF) of melanin, activated by a continuous-wave mode near infrared (NIR) laser, reveals a broad spectrum extending from the visible spectra to the NIR and has potential application for a low-cost, reliable method of detecting melanin. SMPAF images of melanin in mouse hair and skin are compared with conventional multiphoton fluorescence microscopy and confocal reflectance microscopy (CRM). By combining CRM with SMPAF, we can locate melanin reliably. However, we have the added benefit of eliminating background interference from other components inside mouse hair and skin. The melanin SMPAF signal from the mouse hair is a mixture of a two-photon process and a third-order process. The melanin SMPAF emission spectrum is activated by a 1505.9-nm laser light, and the resulting spectrum has a peak at 960 nm. The discovery of the emission peak may lead to a more energy-efficient method of background-free melanin detection with less photo-bleaching.

  15. Stepwise multiphoton activation fluorescence reveals a new method of melanin detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Zhenhua; Kerimo, Josef; Mega, Yair; Dimarzio, Charles A

    2013-06-01

    The stepwise multiphoton activated fluorescence (SMPAF) of melanin, activated by a continuous-wave mode near infrared (NIR) laser, reveals a broad spectrum extending from the visible spectra to the NIR and has potential application for a low-cost, reliable method of detecting melanin. SMPAF images of melanin in mouse hair and skin are compared with conventional multiphoton fluorescence microscopy and confocal reflectance microscopy (CRM). By combining CRM with SMPAF, we can locate melanin reliably. However, we have the added benefit of eliminating background interference from other components inside mouse hair and skin. The melanin SMPAF signal from the mouse hair is a mixture of a two-photon process and a third-order process. The melanin SMPAF emission spectrum is activated by a 1505.9-nm laser light, and the resulting spectrum has a peak at 960 nm. The discovery of the emission peak may lead to a more energy-efficient method of background-free melanin detection with less photo-bleaching.

  16. Biologically derived melanin electrodes in aqueous sodium-ion energy storage devices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Young Jo; Wu, Wei; Chun, Sang-Eun; Whitacre, Jay F; Bettinger, Christopher J

    2013-12-24

    Biodegradable electronics represents an attractive and emerging paradigm in medical devices by harnessing simultaneous advantages afforded by electronically active systems and obviating issues with chronic implants. Integrating practical energy sources that are compatible with the envisioned operation of transient devices is an unmet challenge for biodegradable electronics. Although high-performance energy storage systems offer a feasible solution, toxic materials and electrolytes present regulatory hurdles for use in temporary medical devices. Aqueous sodium-ion charge storage devices combined with biocompatible electrodes are ideal components to power next-generation biodegradable electronics. Here, we report the use of biologically derived organic electrodes composed of melanin pigments for use in energy storage devices. Melanins of natural (derived from Sepia officinalis) and synthetic origin are evaluated as anode materials in aqueous sodium-ion storage devices. Na(+)-loaded melanin anodes exhibit specific capacities of 30.4 ± 1.6 mAhg(-1). Full cells composed of natural melanin anodes and λ-MnO2 cathodes exhibit an initial potential of 1.03 ± 0.06 V with a maximum specific capacity of 16.1 ± 0.8 mAhg(-1). Natural melanin anodes exhibit higher specific capacities compared with synthetic melanins due to a combination of beneficial chemical, electrical, and physical properties exhibited by the former. Taken together, these results suggest that melanin pigments may serve as a naturally occurring biologically derived charge storage material to power certain types of medical devices.

  17. Chemical, experimental, and morphological evidence for diagenetically altered melanin in exceptionally preserved fossils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colleary, Caitlin; Dolocan, Andrei; Gardner, James; Singh, Suresh; Wuttke, Michael; Rabenstein, Renate; Habersetzer, Jörg; Schaal, Stephan; Feseha, Mulugeta; Clemens, Matthew; Jacobs, Bonnie F.; Currano, Ellen D.; Jacobs, Louis L.; Lyng Sylvestersen, Rene; Gabbott, Sarah E.; Vinther, Jakob

    2015-10-01

    In living organisms, color patterns, behavior, and ecology are closely linked. Thus, detection of fossil pigments may permit inferences about important aspects of ancient animal ecology and evolution. Melanin-bearing melanosomes were suggested to preserve as organic residues in exceptionally preserved fossils, retaining distinct morphology that is associated with aspects of original color patterns. Nevertheless, these oblong and spherical structures have also been identified as fossilized bacteria. To date, chemical studies have not directly considered the effects of diagenesis on melanin preservation, and how this may influence its identification. Here we use time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry to identify and chemically characterize melanin in a diverse sample of previously unstudied extant and fossil taxa, including fossils with notably different diagenetic histories and geologic ages. We document signatures consistent with melanin preservation in fossils ranging from feathers, to mammals, to amphibians. Using principal component analyses, we characterize putative mixtures of eumelanin and phaeomelanin in both fossil and extant samples. Surprisingly, both extant and fossil amphibians generally exhibit melanosomes with a mixed eumelanin/phaeomelanin composition rather than pure eumelanin, as assumed previously. We argue that experimental maturation of modern melanin samples replicates diagenetic chemical alteration of melanin observed in fossils. This refutes the hypothesis that such fossil microbodies could be bacteria, and demonstrates that melanin is widely responsible for the organic soft tissue outlines in vertebrates found at exceptional fossil localities, thus allowing for the reconstruction of certain aspects of original pigment patterns.

  18. Functional Analysis of the Dioxin Response Elements (DREs of the Murine CYP1A1 Gene Promoter: Beyond the Core DRE Sequence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuaizhang Li

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR is a ligand-dependent transcription factor that mediates the biological and toxicological effects of halogenated aromatic hydrocarbons, such as 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD. When activated by dioxin, the cytosolic AhR protein complex translocates into the nucleus and dimerizes with the ARNT (Ah receptor nuclear translocator protein. The heteromeric ligand:AhR/Arnt complex then recognizes and binds to its specific DNA recognition site, the dioxin response element (DRE. DREs are located upstream of cytochrome P4501A1 (CYP1A1 and other AhR-responsive genes, and binding of the AhR complex stimulates their transcription. Although CYP1A1 expression has been used as the model system to define the biochemical and molecular mechanism of AhR action, there is still limited knowledge about the roles of each of the seven DREs located in the CYP1A1 promoter. These seven DREs are conserved in mouse, human and rat. Deletion analysis showed that a single DRE at -488 was enough to activate the transcription. Truncation analysis demonstrated that the DRE at site -981 has the highest transcriptional efficiency in response to TCDD. This result was verified by mutation analysis, suggesting that the conserved DRE at site -981 could represent a significant and universal AhR regulatory element for CYP1A1. The reversed substituted intolerant core sequence (5'-GCGTG-3' or 5'-CACGC-3' of seven DREs reduced the transcriptional efficiency, which illustrated that the adjacent sequences of DRE played a vital role in activating transcription. The core DRE sequence (5'-TNGCGTG-3' tends to show a higher transcriptional level than that of the core DRE sequence (5'-CACGCNA-3' triggered by TCDD. Furthermore, in the core DRE (5'-TNGCGTG-3' sequence, when “N” is thymine or cytosine (T or C, the transcription efficiency was stronger compared with that of the other nucleotides. The effects of DRE orientation, DRE adjacent sequences and

  19. Frizzled-Induced Van Gogh Phosphorylation by CK1ε Promotes Asymmetric Localization of Core PCP Factors in Drosophila

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lindsay K. Kelly

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Epithelial tissues are polarized along two axes. In addition to apical-basal polarity, they are often polarized within the plane of the epithelium, so-called Planar Cell Polarity (PCP. PCP depends upon Wnt/Frizzled (Fz signaling factors, including Fz itself and Van Gogh (Vang/Vangl. We sought to understand how Vang interaction with other core PCP factors affects Vang function. We find that Fz induces Vang phosphorylation in a cell-autonomous manner. Vang phosphorylation occurs on conserved N-terminal serine/threonine residues, is mediated by CK1ε/Dco, and is critical for polarized membrane localization of Vang and other PCP proteins. This regulatory mechanism does not require Fz signaling through Dishevelled and thus represents a cell-autonomous upstream interaction between Fz and Vang. Furthermore, this signaling event appears to be related to Wnt5a-mediated Vangl2 phosphorylation during mouse limb patterning and may thus be a general mechanism underlying Wnt-regulated PCP establishment.

  20. Frizzled-Induced Van Gogh Phosphorylation by CK1ε Promotes Asymmetric Localization of Core PCP Factors in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Lindsay K; Wu, Jun; Yanfeng, Wang A; Mlodzik, Marek

    2016-07-12

    Epithelial tissues are polarized along two axes. In addition to apical-basal polarity, they are often polarized within the plane of the epithelium, so-called Planar Cell Polarity (PCP). PCP depends upon Wnt/Frizzled (Fz) signaling factors, including Fz itself and Van Gogh (Vang/Vangl). We sought to understand how Vang interaction with other core PCP factors affects Vang function. We find that Fz induces Vang phosphorylation in a cell-autonomous manner. Vang phosphorylation occurs on conserved N-terminal serine/threonine residues, is mediated by CK1ε/Dco, and is critical for polarized membrane localization of Vang and other PCP proteins. This regulatory mechanism does not require Fz signaling through Dishevelled and thus represents a cell-autonomous upstream interaction between Fz and Vang. Furthermore, this signaling event appears to be related to Wnt5a-mediated Vangl2 phosphorylation during mouse limb patterning and may thus be a general mechanism underlying Wnt-regulated PCP establishment. Copyright © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. The G1613A mutation in the HBV genome affects HBeAg expression and viral replication through altered core promoter activity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Man-Shan Li

    Full Text Available Infection of hepatitis B virus (HBV causes acute and chronic hepatitis and is closely associated with the development of cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC. Previously, we demonstrated that the G1613A mutation in the HBV negative regulatory element (NRE is a hotspot mutation in HCC patients. In this study, we further investigated the functional consequences of this mutation in the context of the full length HBV genome and its replication. We showed that the G1613A mutation significantly suppresses the secretion of e antigen (HBeAg and enhances the synthesis of viral DNA, which is in consistence to our clinical result that the G1613A mutation associates with high viral load in chronic HBV carriers. To further investigate the molecular mechanism of the mutation, we performed the electrophoretic mobility shift assay with the recombinant RFX1 protein, a trans-activator that was shown to interact with the NRE of HBV. Intriguingly, RFX1 binds to the G1613A mutant with higher affinity than the wild-type sequence, indicating that the mutation possesses the trans-activating effect to the core promoter via NRE. The trans-activating effect was further validated by the enhancement of the core promoter activity after overexpression of RFX1 in liver cell line. In summary, our results suggest the functional consequences of the hotspot G1613A mutation found in HBV. We also provide a possible molecular mechanism of this hotspot mutation to the increased viral load of HBV carriers, which increases the risk to HCC.

  2. Both a PKS and a PPTase are involved in melanin biosynthesis and regulation of Aureobasidium melanogenum XJ5-1 isolated from the Taklimakan desert.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Hong; Liu, Guang-Lei; Chi, Zhe; Wang, Jian-Ming; Zhang, Ly-Ly; Chi, Zhen-Ming

    2017-02-20

    A PKS1 gene responsible for the melanin biosynthesis and a NPG1 gene in Aureobasidium melanogenum XJ5-1 were cloned and characterized. An ORF of the PKS1 gene encoding a protein with 2165 amino acids contained 6495bp while an ORF of the NPG1 gene encoding a protein with 340 amino acids had 1076bp. After analysis of their promoters, it was found that expression of both the PKS1 gene and the NPG1 gene was repressed by nitrogen sources and glucose, respectively. The PKS deduced from the cloned gene consisted of one ketosynthase, one acyl transferase, two acyl carrier proteins, one thioesterase and one cyclase while the PPTase belonged to the family Sfp-type. After disruption of the PKS1 gene and the NPG1 gene, expression of the PKS1 gene and the NPG1 gene and the melanin biosynthesis in the disruptants K5 and DP107 disappeared and expression of the PKS1 gene in the disruptant DP107 was also negatively influenced. However, after the NPG1 gene was complemented in the disruptant DP107, the melanin biosynthesis in the complementary strain BP17 was restored and expression of the PKS1 gene and the NPG1 gene was greatly enhanced, suggesting that the PKS was indeed activated and regulated by the PPTase and expression of the PKS1 gene and the NPG1 gene had a coordinate regulation.

  3. Melanin concentration gradients in modern and fossil feathers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel J Field

    Full Text Available In birds and feathered non-avian dinosaurs, within-feather pigmentation patterns range from discrete spots and stripes to more subtle patterns, but the latter remain largely unstudied. A ∼55 million year old fossil contour feather with a dark distal tip grading into a lighter base was recovered from the Fur Formation in Denmark. SEM and synchrotron-based trace metal mapping confirmed that this gradient was caused by differential concentration of melanin. To assess the potential ecological and phylogenetic prevalence of this pattern, we evaluated 321 modern samples from 18 orders within Aves. We observed that the pattern was found most frequently in distantly related groups that share aquatic ecologies (e.g. waterfowl Anseriformes, penguins Sphenisciformes, suggesting a potential adaptive function with ancient origins.

  4. Effects of hepatitis B virus precore and basal core promoter mutations on the expression of viral antigens: genotype B vs C.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, C-J; Cheng, H-R; Chen, C-L; Chen, T-C; Tseng, T-C; Wang, Z-L; Chen, P-J; Liu, C-H; Chen, D-S; Kao, J-H

    2011-10-01

    Hepatitis B virus (HBV) genotypes/mutants are known to affect natural outcomes. The virologic differences among HBV genotype, precore and basal core promoter (BCP) mutations were investigated. HBV strains were isolated from 18 hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg)-positive patients (nine genotype B and nine genotype C). All had precore and BCP wild-type sequences. After cloning of full-length HBV genome, the effects of viral genotype, precore and BCP mutations singly or additively on the expression of viral DNA and antigens were investigated by mutagenesis and transfection assays in Huh7 cells. Significant findings included the following: (i) expression of intracellular core protein increased when precore or BCP mutation was introduced in genotype C strains; (ii) expression of intracellular surface protein was lower in genotype C precore wild-type strain compared with genotype B; (iii) precore mutation was associated with a lower extracellular expression level of HBV DNA; (iv) secretion of hepatitis B surface antigen in genotype C was lower than that in genotype B; and (v) secretion of HBeAg in genotype B was lower than that in genotype C. No additive effect was observed by combining precore and BCP mutations. Hence, HBV genotype and precore/BCP mutations correlate with intrahepatic expression of viral antigens in vitro.

  5. The role of alpha-synuclein in melanin synthesis in melanoma and dopaminergic neuronal cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tianhong Pan

    Full Text Available The relatively high co-occurrence of Parkinson's disease (PD and melanoma has been established by a large number of epidemiological studies. However, a clear biological explanation for this finding is still lacking. Ultra-violet radiation (UVR-induced skin melanin synthesis is a defense mechanism against UVR-induced damage relevant to the initiation of melanoma, whereas, increased neuromelanin (NM, the melanin synthesized in dopaminergic neurons, may enhance the susceptibility to oxidative stress-induced neuronal injury relevant to PD. SNCA is a PD-causing gene coding for alpha-Synuclein (α-Syn that expresses not only in brain, but also in skin as well as in tumors, such as melanoma. The findings that α-Syn can interact with tyrosinase (TYR and inhibit tyrosine hydroxylase (TH, both of which are enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of melanin and dopamine (DA, led us to propose that α-Syn may participate in the regulation of melanin synthesis. In this study, by applying ultraviolet B (UVB light, a physiologically relevant stimulus of melanogenesis, we detected melanin synthesis in A375 and SK-MEL-28 melanoma cells and in SH-SY5Y and PC12 dopaminergic neuronal cells and determined effects of α-Syn on melanin synthesis. Our results showed that UVB light exposure increased melanin synthesis in all 4 cell lines. However, we found that α-Syn expression reduced UVB light-induced increase of melanin synthesis and that melanin content was lower when melanoma cells were expressed with α-Syn, indicating that α-Syn may have inhibitory effects on melanin synthesis in melanoma cells. Different from melanoma cells, the melanin content was higher in α-Syn-over-expressed dopaminergic neuronal SH-SY5Y and PC12 cells, cellular models of PD, than that in non-α-Syn-expressed control cells. We concluded that α-Syn could be one of the points responsible for the positive association between PD and melanoma via its differential roles in melanin synthesis in

  6. Movable magnetic porous cores enclosed within carbon microcapsules: structure-controlled synthesis and promoted carbon-based applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    You, Lijun; Zhang, Yuting; Xu, Shuai; Guo, Jia; Wang, Changchun

    2014-09-10

    Rattle-type porous carbon microcapsules (RPCMs) were deliberately designed to combine multiple functions with the aim of improving the applicability of amorphous carbon in a synergistic fashion. A movable Fe3O4 nanocluster coated with porous carbon is encapsulated in the cavity of a carbon microcapsule with an eggshell-like characteristic, allowing for storage, adsorption, and exchange of matters through the mesoporous channels of the carbon layer. The synthetic strategy of RPCMs is flexible and universal, involving the constitution and carbonization of Fe3O4@PF@PS@PF template particles. This results in a double carbon shell and a sandwiched hollow cavity with a movable magnetic core. There is evidence that RPCMs possess large surface areas, hierarchical pore sizes, hydrophobicity, and magnetic responsiveness. Hence, diverse applications have been investigated. It is proved that RPCMs exhibit excellent performance in the effective enrichment of peptides/proteins. The detection limit toward peptides could reach as low as 10 nM, and the enrichment capacity toward MYO protein is as high as 410 mg/g (protein/beads). Furthermore, RPCMs are able to harvest proteins in complex real samples such as fetal bovine serum and rabbit blood. In addition, RPCMs could be fabricated in a supercapacitor electrode and display outstanding energy-storage performance. The electrochemical measurements demonstrate that RPCM-based electrodes have a specific capacitance of as high as 216 F/g (0.1 A/g), long-term cycling stability with a capacitance retention of 92.4% over 1000 cycles (0.2 A/g), and good electronic conductivity.

  7. Histamine inhibits the melanin-concentrating hormone system: implications for sleep and arousal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parks, Gregory S; Olivas, Nicholas D; Ikrar, Taruna; Sanathara, Nayna M; Wang, Lien; Wang, Zhiwei; Civelli, Olivier; Xu, Xiangmin

    2014-05-15

    Melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH)-producing neurons are known to regulate a wide variety of physiological functions such as feeding, metabolism, anxiety and depression, and reward. Recent studies have revealed that MCH neurons receive projections from several wake-promoting brain regions and are integral to the regulation of rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. Here, we provide evidence in both rats and mice that MCH neurons express histamine-3 receptors (H3R), but not histamine-1 (H1R) or histamine-2 (H2R) receptors. Electrophysiological recordings in brain slices from a novel line of transgenic mice that specifically express the reporter ZsGreen in MCH neurons show that histamine strongly inhibits MCH neurons, an effect which is TTX insensitive, and blocked by the intracellular presence of GDP-β-S. A specific H3R agonist, α-methylhistamine, mimicks the inhibitory effects of histamine, and a specific neutral H3R antagonist, VUF 5681, blocks this effect. Tertiapin Q (TPQ), a G protein-dependent inwardly rectifying potassium (GIRK) channel inhibitor, abolishes histaminergic inhibition of MCH neurons. These results indicate that histamine directly inhibits MCH neurons through H3R by activating GIRK channels and suggest that that inhibition of the MCH system by wake-active histaminergic neurons may be responsible for silencing MCH neurons during wakefulness and thus may be directly involved in the regulation of sleep and arousal.

  8. Elemental characterisation of melanin in feathers via synchrotron X-ray imaging and absorption spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Nicholas P.; van Veelen, Arjen; Anné, Jennifer; Manning, Phillip L.; Bergmann, Uwe; Sellers, William I.; Egerton, Victoria M.; Sokaras, Dimosthenis; Alonso-Mori, Roberto; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Ito, Shosuke; Wogelius, Roy A.

    2016-09-01

    Melanin is a critical component of biological systems, but the exact chemistry of melanin is still imprecisely known. This is partly due to melanin’s complex heterogeneous nature and partly because many studies use synthetic analogues and/or pigments extracted from their natural biological setting, which may display important differences from endogenous pigments. Here we demonstrate how synchrotron X-ray analyses can non-destructively characterise the elements associated with melanin pigment in situ within extant feathers. Elemental imaging shows that the distributions of Ca, Cu and Zn are almost exclusively controlled by melanin pigment distribution. X-ray absorption spectroscopy demonstrates that the atomic coordination of zinc and sulfur is different within eumelanised regions compared to pheomelanised regions. This not only impacts our fundamental understanding of pigmentation in extant organisms but also provides a significant contribution to the evidence-based colour palette available for reconstructing the appearance of fossil organisms.

  9. Characterization of melanin produced by a wild-type strain of Bacillus cereus

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Jianping; CAI Jun; DENG Yinyue; CHEN Yuehua; REN Gaixin

    2007-01-01

    Bacillus cereus 58 (Bc58)is a UV-resistant wild type strain that has an ability to produce a sorrel pigment induced by L-tyrosine.The Fourier-transform infrared (FT-IR)spectra and chemical tests of its pigment are similar to that of the standard melanin (Sigma).A bioassay shows that the LC50 of a Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt)formulation added with the melanin of Bc58 and exposed to UV for 5 h is 16.1 μg/ml,which is similar to that of the Bt formulation without UV treatment,however,it is almost double that of the Bt formulation exposed to UV without the melanin of Bc58.The result of SDS-PAGE indicates that the melanin of Bc58 can protect the insecticidal crystal proteins from degradation.This suggests that it is an excellent UV protective agent for the insecticidal crystal proteins of the Bt formulation.

  10. Lasers in esthetic treatment of gingival melanin hyperpigmentation: a review article.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bakhshi, Mahin; Rahmani, Somayeh; Rahmani, Ali

    2015-11-01

    The health and suitability of mouth components play an important role towards defining facial attractiveness. An important component of the oral cavity is the color of the gingival tissue. Gingival melanin hyperpigmentation is caused by several reasons and affects people across ethnicity, race, age, and both gender. Lasers are presently being used for gingival melanin depigmentation. In this article, we reviewed studies on laser parameters, duration of gingival healing, pain perception during and after the operation, scores used for the evaluation of gingival melanin hyperpigmentation, follow-up period, treatment results, and recurrence reports. We conclude that laser ablation for gingival depigmentation is one of the most pleasant, reliable, acceptable, and impressive techniques available for treating gingival melanin hyperpigmentation.

  11. Melanin concentrating hormone receptor 1 (MCHR1) antagonists - Still a viable approach for obesity treatment?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Högberg, T.; Frimurer, T.M.; Sasmal, P.K.

    2012-01-01

    Obesity is a global epidemic associated with multiple severe diseases. Several pharmacotherapies have been investigated including the melanin concentrating hormone (MCH) and its receptor 1. The development of MCHR1 antagonists are described with a specific perspective on different chemotypes...

  12. Bio-Inspired Structural Colors Produced via Self-Assembly of Synthetic Melanin Nanoparticles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Ming; Li, Yiwen; Allen, Michael C; Deheyn, Dimitri D; Yue, Xiujun; Zhao, Jiuzhou; Gianneschi, Nathan C; Shawkey, Matthew D; Dhinojwala, Ali

    2015-05-26

    Structural colors arising from interactions of light with submicron scale periodic structures have been found in many species across all taxa, serving multiple biological functions including sexual signaling, camouflage, and aposematism. Directly inspired by the extensive use of self-assembled melanosomes to produce colors in avian feathers, we set out to synthesize and assemble polydopamine-based synthetic melanin nanoparticles in an effort to fabricate colored films. We have quantitatively demonstrated that synthetic melanin nanoparticles have a high refractive index and broad absorption spanning across the UV-visible range, similar to natural melanins. Utilizing a thin-film interference model, we demonstrated the coloration mechanism of deposited films and showed that the unique optical properties of synthetic melanin nanoparticles provide advantages for structural colors over other polymeric nanoparticles (i.e., polystyrene colloidal particles).

  13. Melanin and blood concentration in human skin studied by multiple regression analysis: experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimada, M.; Yamada, Y.; Itoh, M.; Yatagai, T.

    2001-09-01

    Knowledge of the mechanism of human skin colour and measurement of melanin and blood concentration in human skin are needed in the medical and cosmetic fields. The absorbance spectrum from reflectance at the visible wavelength of human skin increases under several conditions such as a sunburn or scalding. The change of the absorbance spectrum from reflectance including the scattering effect does not correspond to the molar absorption spectrum of melanin and blood. The modified Beer-Lambert law is applied to the change in the absorbance spectrum from reflectance of human skin as the change in melanin and blood is assumed to be small. The concentration of melanin and blood was estimated from the absorbance spectrum reflectance of human skin using multiple regression analysis. Estimated concentrations were compared with the measured one in a phantom experiment and this method was applied to in vivo skin.

  14. Natural melanin: a potential pH-responsive drug release device.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araújo, Marco; Viveiros, Raquel; Correia, Tiago R; Correia, Ilídio J; Bonifácio, Vasco D B; Casimiro, Teresa; Aguiar-Ricardo, Ana

    2014-07-20

    This work proposes melanin as a new nanocarrier for pH-responsive drug release. Melanin is an abundant natural polymer that can be easily extracted from cuttlefish as nanoparticles with a suitable size range for drug delivery. However, despite its high potentiality, the application of this biopolymer in the pharmaceutical and biomedical fields is yet to be explored. Herein, melanin nanoparticles were impregnated with metronidazole, chosen as model antibiotic drug, using supercritical carbon dioxide. The drug release profile was investigated at acidic and physiologic pH, and the dominant mechanism was found to follow a non-Fickian transport. Drug release from melanin shows a strong pH dependency, which allied to its biocompatibility and lack of cytotoxicity envisages its potential application as nanocarrier in formulations for colon and intestine targeted drug delivery.

  15. Quick analysis of optical spectra to quantify epidermal melanin and papillary dermal blood content of skin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacques, Steven L

    2015-04-01

    This paper presents a practical approach for assessing the melanin and blood content of the skin from total diffuse reflectance spectra, R(λ), where λ is wavelength. A quick spectral analysis using just three wavelengths (585 nm, 700 nm and 800 nm) is presented, based on the 1985 work of Kollias and Baquer who documented epidermal melanin of skin using the slope of optical density (OD) between 620 nm and 720 nm. The paper describes the non-rectilinear character of such a quick analysis, and shows that almost any choice of two wavelengths in the 600-900 range can achieve the characterization of melanin. The extrapolation of the melanin slope to 585 nm serves as a baseline for subtraction from the OD (585 nm) to yield a blood perfusion score. Monte Carlo simulations created spectral data for a skin model with epidermis, papillary dermis and reticular dermis to illustrate the analysis.

  16. Elemental characterisation of melanin in feathers via synchrotron X-ray imaging and absorption spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Nicholas P.; van Veelen, Arjen; Anné, Jennifer; Manning, Phillip L.; Bergmann, Uwe; Sellers, William I.; Egerton, Victoria M.; Sokaras, Dimosthenis; Alonso-Mori, Roberto; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Ito, Shosuke; Wogelius, Roy A.

    2016-01-01

    Melanin is a critical component of biological systems, but the exact chemistry of melanin is still imprecisely known. This is partly due to melanin’s complex heterogeneous nature and partly because many studies use synthetic analogues and/or pigments extracted from their natural biological setting, which may display important differences from endogenous pigments. Here we demonstrate how synchrotron X-ray analyses can non-destructively characterise the elements associated with melanin pigment in situ within extant feathers. Elemental imaging shows that the distributions of Ca, Cu and Zn are almost exclusively controlled by melanin pigment distribution. X-ray absorption spectroscopy demonstrates that the atomic coordination of zinc and sulfur is different within eumelanised regions compared to pheomelanised regions. This not only impacts our fundamental understanding of pigmentation in extant organisms but also provides a significant contribution to the evidence-based colour palette available for reconstructing the appearance of fossil organisms. PMID:27658854

  17. The role of melanin as protector against free radicals in skin and its role as free radical indicator in hair

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrling, Thomas; Jung, Katinka; Fuchs, Jürgen

    2008-05-01

    Throughout the body, melanin is a homogenous biological polymer containing a population of intrinsic, semiquinone-like radicals. Additional extrinsic free radicals are reversibly photo-generated by UV and visible light. Melanin photochemistry, particularly the formation and decay of extrinsic radicals, has been the subject of numerous electron spin resonance (ESR) spectroscopy studies. Several melanin monomers exist, and the predominant monomer in a melanin polymer depends on its location within an organism. In skin and hair, melanin differs in content of eumelanin or pheomelanin. Its bioradical character and its susceptibility to UV irradiation makes melanin an excellent indicator for UV-related processes in both skin and hair. The existence of melanin in skin is strongly correlated with the prevention against free radicals/ROS generated by UV radiation. Especially in the skin melanin (mainly eumelanin) ensures the only natural UV protection by eliminating the generated free radicals/ROS. Melanin in hair can be used as a free radical detector for evaluating the efficacy of hair care products. The aim of this study was to investigate the suitability of melanin as protector of skin against UV generated free radicals and as free radical indicator in hair.

  18. Examination by EPR spectroscopy of free radicals in melanins isolated from A-375 cells exposed on valproic acid and cisplatin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chodurek, Ewa; Zdybel, Magdalena; Pilawa, Barbara; Dzierzewicz, Zofia

    2012-01-01

    Drug binding by melanin biopolymers influence the effectiveness of the chemotherapy, radiotherapy and photodynamic therapy. Free radicals of melanins take part in formation of their complex with drugs. The aim of this work was to determine the effect of the two compounds: valproic acid (VPA) and cisplatin (CPT) on free radicals properties of melanin isolated from A-375 melanoma cells. Free radicals were examined by an X-band (9.3 GHz) electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy. EPR spectra were measured for the model synthetic eumelanin - DOPA-melanin, the melanin isolated from the control A-375 cells and these cells treated by VPA, CPT and both VPA and CPT. For all the examined samples broad EPR lines (deltaBpp: 0.48-0.68 mT) with g-factors of 2.0045-2.0060 characteristic for o-semiquinone free radicals were observed. Free radicals concentrations (N) in the tested samples, g-factors, amplitudes (A), integral intensities (I) and linewidths (deltaBpp) of the EPR spectra, were analyzed. The EPR lines were homogeneously broadened. Continuous microwave saturation of the EPR spectra indicated that slow spin-lattice relaxation processes existed in all the tested melanin samples. The relatively slowest spin-lattice relaxation processes characterized melanin isolated from A-375 cells treated with both VPA and CPT. The changes of the EPR spectra with increasing microwave power in the range of 2.2-70 mW were evaluated. Free radicals concentrations in the melanin from A-375 cells were higher than in the synthetic DOPA-melanin. The strong increase of free radicals concentration in the melanin from A-375 cells was observed after their treating by VPA. CPT also caused the increase of free radicals concentrations in the examined natural melanin. The free radicals concentration in melanin isolated from A-375 cells treated with both VPA and CPT was slightly higher than those in melanin from the control cells.

  19. KHG26792 Inhibits Melanin Synthesis in Mel-Ab Cells and a Skin Equivalent Model

    OpenAIRE

    Li, Hailan; Kim, Jandi; Hahn, Hoh-Gyu; Yun, Jun; Jeong, Hyo-Soon; Yun, Hye-Young; Baek, Kwang Jin; Kwon, Nyoun Soo; Min, Young Sil; Park, Kyoung-Chan; Kim, Dong-Seok

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to characterize the effects of KHG26792 (3-(naphthalen-2-yl(propoxy) methyl)azetidine hydrochloride), a potential skin whitening agent, on melanin synthesis and identify the underlying mechanism of action. Our data showed that KHG26792 significantly reduced melanin synthesis in a dose-dependent manner. Additionally, KHG26792 downregulated microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF) and tyrosinase, the rate-limiting enzyme in melanogenesis, although tyros...

  20. An Ultra-Violet Tolerant Wild-Type Strain of Melanin-Producing Bacillus thuringiensis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sansinenea, Estibaliz; Salazar, Francisco; Ramirez, Melanie; Ortiz, Aurelio

    2015-01-01

    Background: Bacillus thuringiensis is the most successful biological control agent used in agriculture, forestry and mosquito control. However, the insecticidal activity of the B. thuringiensis formulation is not very stable and rapidly loses its biological activity under field conditions, due to the ultraviolet radiation in sunlight. Melanin is known to absorb radiation therefore photo protection of B. thuringiensis based on melanin has been extensively studied. Objectives: The aim of this study was to find a wild type strain of naturally melanin-producing B. thuringiensis to avoid any mutation or manipulation that can affect the Cry protein content. Materials and Methods: Bacillus thuringiensis strains were isolated from soils of different States of Mexico and pigment extraction was followed by lowering the pH to 2 using 1N HCl. Pigment was characterized by some chemical tests based on its solubility, bleaching by H2O2 and flocculation with FeCl3, and using an Infrared (IR) spectrum. Ultraviolet (UV) irradiation experiment was performed to probe the melanin efficacy. Results: ELI52 strain of B. thuringiensis was confirmed to naturally produce melanin. The Cry protein analysis suggested that ELI52 is probably a B. thuringiensis subsp. israelensis strain with toxic activity against the Diptera order of insects. Ultra Violet protection efficacy of melanin was probed counting total viable colonies after UV radiation and comparing the results with the non-producing melanin strain L-DOPA (L-3, 4-dihydroxyphenylalanine) was also detected in the culture. ELI52 strain showed an antagonistic effect over some common bacteria from the environment. Conclusions: ELI52 wild-type strain of B. thuringiensis is a good bio-insecticide that produces melanin with UV-resistance that is probably toxic against the Diptera order of insects and can inhibit the growth of other environmental bacteria. PMID:26421136

  1. Sexual dimorphism in melanin pigmentation, feather coloration and its heritability in the barn swallow (Hirundo rustica).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saino, Nicola; Romano, Maria; Rubolini, Diego; Teplitsky, Celine; Ambrosini, Roberto; Caprioli, Manuela; Canova, Luca; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa

    2013-01-01

    Melanin is the main pigment in animal coloration and considerable variation in the concentrations of the two melanin forms (pheo- and eumlanin) in pigmented tissues exists among populations and individuals. Melanin-based coloration is receiving increasing attention particularly in socio-sexual communication contexts because the melanocortin system has been hypothesized to provide a mechanistic basis for covariation between coloration and fitness traits. However, with few notable exceptions, little detailed information is available on inter-individual and inter-population variation in melanin pigmentation and on its environmental, genetic and ontogenetic components. Here, we investigate melanin-based coloration in an Italian population of a passerine bird, the barn swallow (Hirundo rustica rustica), its sex- and age-related variation, and heritability. The concentrations of eu- and pheomelanin in the throat (brown) and belly (white-to-brownish) feathers differed between sexes but not according to age. The relative concentration of either melanin (Pheo:Eu) differed between sexes in throat but not in belly feathers, and the concentrations in males compared to females were larger in belly than in throat feathers. There were weak correlations between the concentrations of melanins within as well as among plumage regions. Coloration of belly feathers was predicted by the concentration of both melanins whereas coloration of throat feathers was only predicted by pheomelanin in females. In addition, Pheo:Eu predicted coloration of throat feathers in females and that of belly feathers in males. Finally, we found high heritability of color of throat feathers. Melanization was found to differ from that recorded in Hirundo rustica rustica from Scotland or from H. r. erythrogaster from North America. Hence, present results show that pigmentation strategies vary in a complex manner according to sex and plumage region, and also among geographical populations, potentially

  2. Melanin, a promising radioprotector: mechanisms of actions in a mice model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunwar, A; Adhikary, B; Jayakumar, S; Barik, A; Chattopadhyay, S; Raghukumar, S; Priyadarsini, K I

    2012-10-15

    The radioprotective effect of extracellular melanin, a naturally occurring pigment, isolated from the fungus Gliocephalotrichum simplex was examined in BALB/C mice, and the probable mechanism of action was established. At an effective dose of 50mg/kg body weight, melanin exhibited both prophylactic and mitigative activities, increasing the 30-day survival of mice by 100% and 60%, respectively, after exposure to radiation (7Gy, whole body irradiation (WBI)). The protective activity of melanin was primarily due to inhibition of radiation-induced hematopoietic damages as evidenced by improvement in spleen parameters such as index, total cellularity, endogenous colony forming units, and maintenance of circulatory white blood cells and platelet counts. Melanin also reversed the radiation-induced decrease in ERK phosphorylation in splenic tissue, which may be the key feature in its radioprotective action. Additionally, our results indicated that the sustained activation of AKT, JNK and P38 proteins in splenic tissue of melanin pre-treated group may also play a secondary role. This was also supported by the fact that melanin could prevent apoptosis in splenic tissue by decreasing BAX/Bcl-XL ratio, and increasing the expressions of the proliferation markers (PCNA and Cyclin D1), compared to the radiation control group. Melanin also reduced the oxidative stress in hepatic tissue and abrogated immune imbalance by reducing the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL6 and TNFα). In conclusion, our results confirmed that fungal melanin is a very effective radioprotector against WBI and the probable mechanisms of radioprotection are due to modulation in pro-survival (ERK) signaling, prevention of oxidative stress and immunomodulation.

  3. Melanin from the nitrogen-fixing bacterium Azotobacter chroococcum: a spectroscopic characterization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aulie Banerjee

    Full Text Available Melanins, the ubiquitous hetero-polymer pigments found widely dispersed among various life forms, are usually dark brown/black in colour. Although melanins have variety of biological functions, including protection against ultraviolet radiation of sunlight and are used in medicine, cosmetics, extraction of melanin from the animal and plant kingdoms is not an easy task. Using complementary physicochemical techniques (i.e. MALDI-TOF, FTIR absorption and cross-polarization magic angle spinning solid-state (13C NMR, we report here the characterization of melanins extracted from the nitrogen-fixing non-virulent bacterium Azotobacter chroococcum, a safe viable source. Moreover, considering dihydroxyindole moiety as the main constituent, an effort is made to propose the putative molecular structure of the melanin hetero-polymer extracted from the bacterium. Characterization of the melanin obtained from Azotobacter chroococcum would provide an inspiration in extending research activities on these hetero-polymers and their use as protective agent against UV radiation.

  4. Efektivitas kurkumin sebagai antioksidan dan inhibitor melanin pada kultur sel B16F1

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    Sugiharto Sugiharto

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Melanin inhibitors have become increasingly important ingredients in medication and cosmetics for the prevention ofhyperpigmentation. In the last few years, a huge number of natural herbal extracts have been tested as inhibitors of melanin synthesisand some of these effects are related to the antioxidant properties. The objectives of this study were to determine of curcumin propertiesas antioxidant activity and melanin inhibitors. In this study, our data indicated that antioxidant assay with DPPH showed IC50 was16,05 μg/ml. In the absence of α-MSH (α-Melanocyte Stimulating Hormone, melanin content assay in cell B16-F1 indicated thatthe highest activity of curcumin to reduce melanin content of 45,67% at 25 μg/ml. Meanwhile, in the presence of α-MSH at the sameconcentration indicated that the highest activity was 53,87%. Based on the data, curcumin has potential properties as antioxidantactivity and melanin inhibitor.

  5. Manassantin A and B from Saururus chinensis inhibiting cellular melanin production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seo, Chang-Seob; Lee, Won-Hee; Chung, Hee-Wook; Chang, Eun Ju; Lee, Seung Ho; Jahng, Yurngdong; Hwang, Bang Yeon; Son, Jong-Keun; Han, Sang-Bae; Kim, Youngsoo

    2009-11-01

    Hyperpigmentation disorders such as freckles and senile lentigines in the skin are associated with abnormal accumulation of melanin pigments. In this study, two lignan constituents were isolated from Saururus chinensis Baill (Saururaceae) as inhibitors of cellular melanin production by bioassay-guided fractionations. The active constituents were manassantin A and B that dose-dependently inhibited melanin production in alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (alpha-MSH)-activated melanoma B16 cells with IC(50) values of 13 nm and 8 nm, respectively. Arbutin as a positive control exhibited an IC(50) value of 96 microm on alpha-MSH-induced melanin production. Further, manassantin A inhibited forskolin- or 3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine (IBMX)-induced melanin production with IC(50) values of 14 nm or 12 nm, respectively. Manassantin A decreased cellular amounts of IBMX-inducible tyrosinase protein but could not affect the catalytic activity of cell-free tyrosinase, a key enzyme in the biosynthetic pathway of melanin pigments. Finally, this study could provide a pharmacological potential of S. chinensis in hyperpigmentation disorders.

  6. Production and Characterization of Melanin by Submerged Culture of Culinary and Medicinal Fungi Auricularia auricula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Min; Xiao, Gongnian; Thring, Ronald W; Chen, Wan; Zhou, Huabin; Yang, Hailong

    2015-05-01

    Natural melanin is of great potential value and application in the fields of pharmacology, cosmetics, and functional foods. In the present study, statistically designed experiments were conducted for the optimization of the media to enhance the production of melanin by submerged culture of Auricularia auricula. Glucose, tyrosine, peptone, and CaCO3 were found to have significant effects (P melanin biosynthesis by a Plackett-Burman experimental design and subsequently optimized using response surface methodology. Optimal media were obtained at the following concentrations: glucose, 0.90 g/L; tyrosine, 6.68 g/L; peptone, 6.99 g/L; and CaCO3, 6.75 g/L. The validity of the optimum media was verified in separate experiments in which the melanin yield of 1008.08 mg/L was obtained under optimum conditions, compared with 306.52 mg/L at other conditions, i.e., a 3.29-fold increase. Furthermore, the important physical and chemical properties of A. auricula melanin were determined. The findings from the present study indicate that large-scale production of natural melanin by submerged culture of A. auricular could be a useful approach.

  7. Preparation of melanin from Catharsius molossus L. and preliminary study on its chemical structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xin, Chao; Ma, Jia-hua; Tan, Cheng-jia; Yang, Zhou; Ye, Feng; Long, Chan; Ye, Shuang; Hou, Da-bin

    2015-04-01

    A great deal of melanin was found in the waste alkali liquor produced by extraction of chitin from Catharsius molossus L. Discarding the lye could harm the environment and cause waste of resources. In this paper, melanin from C. molossus L. was recovered through acid precipitation and purified by pepsin and so on. The purity, chemical composition and structure of the prepared melanin were explored by UV-visible absorption spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, high resolution (13)C Cross polarization magic angle spinning nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy pyrolysis gas chromatography mass spectrometry, X ray diffraction, X ray fluorescence, matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time of flight tandem mass spectrometry, thermal analysis, and so on. The results showed that the purity of the prepared melanin was higher than the commercial standard melanin and it was a kind of nanoaggregates composed of a large quantity of 5,6-dihydroxyindole eumelanin and a small amount of phaeomelanin. In addition, the prepared melanin was irregular in shape and its structure could be divided into three levels: advanced structure maintained by polypeptides, substructure maintained by the ferric ion and microstructure. In particular, the smallest structural unit showed the graphite-like layered structure containing five layers linked by non-covalent bonds and each layer mainly consisted of 5,6-dihydroxyindole and its derivatives, which might be connected to each other through various chemical bonds.

  8. High-level production of melanin by a novel isolate of Streptomyces kathirae.

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    Guo, Jing; Rao, Zhiming; Yang, Taowei; Man, Zaiwei; Xu, Meijuan; Zhang, Xian

    2014-08-01

    Forty-five bacterial strains that produced diffusive pigments were isolated from 40 soil samples. Maximum pigment production was from a Streptomyces kathirae strain designated SC-1. The diffused pigment was characterized by UV-visual and infrared spectroscopy, MS and (1) H nuclear magnetic resonance imaging, and was confirmed as melanin. This may be the first report of melanin production by S. kathirae. To enhance melanin production, the culture medium was optimized by conducting a series of batch fermentations in a defined medium, and the results were analysed statistically using a response surface method. The optimal culture medium comprised 3.3 g L(-1) amylodextrine, 37 g L(-1) yeast extract, 5 g L(-1) NaCl, 0.1 g L(-1) CaCl2 and 54.4 μM CuSO4 . The pH of this medium was 6.0. Under optimal conditions, the melanin concentration was maximized at 13.7 g L(-1) , c. 8.6-fold higher than obtained in suboptimal medium. To our knowledge, the results provide novel data on melanin fermentation, and identify an excellent candidate for industrial-scale microbial fermentation of melanin.

  9. Characterization and biological activities of extracellular melanin produced by Schizophyllum commune (Fries).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arun, G; Eyini, M; Gunasekaran, P

    2015-06-01

    Melanins are enigmatic pigments produced by a wide variety of microorganisms including bacteria and fungi. Here, we have isolated and characterized extracellular melanin from mushroom fungus, Schizophyllum commune. The extracellular dark pigment produced by the broth culture of S. commune, after 21 days of incubation was recovered by hot acid-alkali treatment. The melanin nature of the pigment was characterized by biochemical tests and further, confirmed by UV, IR, EPR, NMR and MALDI-TOF Mass Spectra. Extracellular melanin, at 100 μg/ml, showed significant antibacterial activity against Escherichia coli, Bacillus subtilis, Klebsiella pneumoniae and Pseudomonas fluorescens and antifungal activity against Trichophyton simii and T. rubrum. At a concentration of 50 μg/ml, melanin showed high free radical scavenging activity of DPPH (2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl) indicating its antioxidant potential. It showed concentration dependent inhibition of cell proliferation of Human Epidermoid Larynx Carcinoma Cell Line (HEP-2). This study has demonstrated characterization of melanin from basidiomycetes mushroom fungus, Schizophyllum commune and its applications.

  10. BmPAH catalyzes the initial melanin biosynthetic step in Bombyx mori.

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    Ping Chen

    Full Text Available Pigmentation during insect development is a primal adaptive requirement. In the silkworm, melanin is the primary component of larval pigments. The rate limiting substrate in melanin synthesis is tyrosine, which is converted from phenylalanine by the rate-limiting enzyme phenylalanine hydroxylase (PAH. While the role of tyrosine, derived from phenylalanine, in the synthesis of fiber proteins has long been known, the role of PAH in melanin synthesis is still unknown in silkworm. To define the importance of PAH, we cloned the cDNA sequence of BmPAH and expressed its complete coding sequence using the Bac-to-Bac baculovirus expression system. Purified recombinant protein had high PAH activity, some tryptophan hydroxylase activity, but no tyrosine hydroxylase activity, which are typical properties of PAH in invertebrates. Because melanin synthesis is most robust during the embryonic stage and larval integument recoloring stage, we injected BmPAH dsRNA into silkworm eggs and observed that decreasing BmPAH mRNA reduced neonatal larval tyrosine and caused insect coloration to fail. In vitro cultures and injection of 4(th instar larval integuments with PAH inhibitor revealed that PAH activity was essential for larval marking coloration. These data show that BmPAH is necessary for melanin synthesis and we propose that conversion of phenylalanine to tyrosine by PAH is the first step in the melanin biosynthetic pathway in the silkworm.

  11. Clinical instructors' perception of a faculty development programme promoting postgraduate year-1 (PGY1) residents' ACGME six core competencies: a 2-year study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Fa-Yauh; Yang, Ying-Ying; Hsu, Hui-Chi; Chuang, Chiao-Lin; Lee, Wei-Shin; Chang, Ching-Chih; Huang, Chia-Chang; Chen, Jaw-Wen; Cheng, Hao-Min; Jap, Tjin-Shing

    2011-01-01

    Objective The six core competencies designated by Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) are essential for establishing a patient centre holistic medical system. The authors developed a faculty programme to promote the postgraduate year 1 (PGY(1)) resident, ACGME six core competencies. The study aims to assess the clinical instructors' perception, attitudes and subjective impression towards the various sessions of the 'faculty development programme for teaching ACGME competencies.' Methods During 2009 and 2010, 134 clinical instructors participated in the programme to establish their ability to teach and assess PGY(1) residents about ACGME competencies. Results The participants in the faculty development programme reported that the skills most often used while teaching were learnt during circuit and itinerant bedside, physical examination teaching, mini-clinical evaluation exercise (mini-CEX) evaluation demonstration, training workshop and videotapes of 'how to teach ACGME competencies.' Participants reported that circuit bedside teaching and mini-CEX evaluation demonstrations helped them in the interpersonal and communication skills domain, and that the itinerant teaching demonstrations helped them in the professionalism domain, while physical examination teaching and mini-CEX evaluation demonstrations helped them in the patients' care domain. Both the training workshop and videotape session increase familiarity with teaching and assessing skills. Participants who applied the skills learnt from the faculty development programme the most in their teaching and assessment came from internal medicine departments, were young attending physician and had experience as PGY(1) clinical instructors. Conclusions According to the clinical instructors' response, our faculty development programme effectively increased their familiarity with various teaching and assessment skills needed to teach PGY(1) residents and ACGME competencies, and these clinical

  12. Determination and Characterization of Extracellular Melanin from Setosphaeria turcica and Influencing Factors of Its Production%玉米大斑病菌的胞外黑色素种类及影响其产量的因素

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    吴楠; 李青为; 曹志艳; 张娇; 郝志敏; 董金皋

    2013-01-01

    respectively containing tyrosine and tricyclazole were about 2 and 1.5 times more than that of the mock,while it could also be slightly enhanced by Cu2+ with the concentration lower than 0.5 μmol·L-1 or at pH6.0.[Conclusion] The extracellular melanin from S.turcica was proved to be similar with DOPA melanin.Tyrosine and tricyclazole obviously promoted the production of extracellular melanin.

  13. Vaccinia virus-mediated melanin production allows MR and optoacoustic deep tissue imaging and laser-induced thermotherapy of cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stritzker, Jochen; Kirscher, Lorenz; Scadeng, Miriam; Deliolanis, Nikolaos C; Morscher, Stefan; Symvoulidis, Panagiotis; Schaefer, Karin; Zhang, Qian; Buckel, Lisa; Hess, Michael; Donat, Ulrike; Bradley, William G; Ntziachristos, Vasilis; Szalay, Aladar A

    2013-02-26

    We reported earlier the delivery of antiangiogenic single chain antibodies by using oncolytic vaccinia virus strains to enhance their therapeutic efficacy. Here, we provide evidence that gene-evoked production of melanin can be used as a therapeutic and diagnostic mediator, as exemplified by insertion of only one or two genes into the genome of an oncolytic vaccinia virus strain. We found that produced melanin is an excellent reporter for optical imaging without addition of substrate. Melanin production also facilitated deep tissue optoacoustic imaging as well as MRI. In addition, melanin was shown to be a suitable target for laser-induced thermotherapy and enhanced oncolytic viral therapy. In conclusion, melanin as a mediator for thermotherapy and reporter for different imaging modalities may soon become a versatile alternative to replace fluorescent proteins also in other biological systems. After ongoing extensive preclinical studies, melanin overproducing oncolytic virus strains might be used in clinical trials in patients with cancer.

  14. Melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH: role in REM sleep and depression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pablo eTorterolo

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH is a peptidergic neuromodulator synthesized by neurons of the lateral hypothalamus and incerto-hypothalamic area. MCHergic neurons project throughout the central nervous system, including areas such as the dorsal (DR and median (MR raphe nuclei, which are involved in the control of sleep and mood.Major Depression (MD is a prevalent psychiatric disease diagnosed on the basis of symptomatic criteria such as sadness or melancholia, guilt, irritability and anhedonia. A short REM sleep latency (i.e. the interval between sleep onset and the first REM sleep period, as well as an increase in the duration of REM sleep and the density of rapid-eye movements during this state, are considered important biological markers of depression. The fact that the greatest firing rate of MCHergic neurons occurs during REM sleep and that optogenetic stimulation of these neurons induces sleep, tends to indicate that MCH plays a critical role in the generation and maintenance of sleep, especially REM sleep. In addition, the acute microinjection of MCH into the DR promotes REM sleep, while immunoneutralization of this peptide within the DR decreases the time spent in this state. Moreover, microinjections of MCH into either the DR or MR promote a depressive-like behavior. In the DR, this effect is prevented by the systemic administration of antidepressant drugs (either fluoxetine or nortriptyline and blocked by the intra-DR microinjection of a specific MCH receptor antagonist. Using electrophysiological and microdialysis techniques we demonstrated also that MCH decreases the activity of serotonergic DR neurons.Therefore, there are substantive experimental data suggesting that the MCHergic system plays a role in the control of REM sleep and, in addition, in the pathophysiology of depression. Consequently, in the present report, we summarize and evaluate the current data and hypotheses related to the role of MCH in REM sleep and MD.

  15. Neurochemical characterization of neurons expressing melanin-concentrating hormone receptor 1 in the mouse hypothalamus1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chee, Melissa J. S.; Pissios, Pavlos; Maratos-Flier, Eleftheria

    2013-01-01

    Melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) is a hypothalamic neuropeptide that acts via MCH receptor 1 (MCHR1) in the mouse. It promotes positive energy balance thus mice lacking MCH or MCHR1 are lean, hyperactive, and resistant to diet-induced obesity. Identifying the cellular targets of MCH is an important step to understanding the mechanisms underlying MCH actions. We generated the Mchr1-cre mouse that expressed cre recombinase driven by the MCHR1 promoter and crossed it with a tdTomato reporter mouse. The resulting Mchr1-cre/tdTomato progeny expressed easily detectable tdTomato fluorescence in MCHR1 neurons, which were found throughout the olfactory system, striatum, and hypothalamus. To chemically identify MCH-targeted cell populations that play a role in energy balance, MCHR1 hypothalamic neurons were characterized by colabeling select hypothalamic neuropeptides with tdTomato fluorescence. TdTomato fluorescence colocalized with dynorphin, oxytocin, vasopressin, enkephalin, thyrothropin-releasing hormone, and corticotropin-releasing factor immunoreactive cells in the paraventricular nucleus. In the lateral hypothalamus, neurotensin but neither orexin nor MCH neurons expressed tdTomato. In the arcuate nucleus, both Neuropeptide Y and proopiomelanocortin cells expressed tdTomato. We further demonstrated that some of these arcuate neurons were also targets of leptin action. Interestingly, MCHR1 was expressed in the vast majority of leptin-sensitive proopiomelanocortin neurons, highlighting their importance for the orexigenic actions of MCH. Taken together, this study supports the use of the Mchr1-cre mouse for outlining the neuroanatomical distribution and neurochemical phenotype of MCHR1 neurons. PMID:23605441

  16. Non-toxic melanin production inhibitors from Garcinia livingstonei (Clusiaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulholland, Dulcie A; Mwangi, Elizabeth M; Dlova, Ncoza C; Plant, Nick; Crouch, Neil R; Coombes, Phillip H

    2013-09-16

    The stem bark of Garcinia livingstonei is used traditionally as a skin lightening agent. To isolate and identify compounds responsible for the observed skin lightening activity of Garcinia livingstonei and to evaluate their cytotoxicity. Constituents of the stem bark and fruits of Garcinia livingstonei were isolated using chromatographic techniques and structures were determined using 1D and 2D NMR and MS analysis. MeWo cells were used to evaluate the cytotoxicity and impact on melanin levels of extracts and compounds isolated, in vitro. Twelve known compounds, morelloflavone (1), morelloflavone-7″-sulphate (2), guttiferone A (3), sargaol (4), isojacareubin (5), 6-deoxyisojacareubin (6) and in addition to the common triterpenoids, betulin, betulin aldehyde, lupeol, lupenone, euphol and stigmasterol were isolated in this investigation. Morelloflavone, morelloflavone-7″-sulphate and sargaol, were found to be considerably less cytotoxic and more effective as skin lightening agents than hydroquinone. A range of compounds was isolated from the stem bark and fruit of Garcinia livingstonei. Although the bark extract contained the cytotoxic guttiferone A, it was found to be less toxic than hydroquinone, and morelloflavone, the 7″-sulphate derivative and sargaol show potential for development as depigmentation/skin lightening agents. © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Stronger enhancer II/core promoter activities of hepatitis B virus isolates of B2 subgenotype than those of C2 subgenotype.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qin, Yanli; Zhou, Xueshi; Jia, Haodi; Chen, Chaoyang; Zhao, Weifeng; Zhang, Jiming; Tong, Shuping

    2016-07-27

    Hepatitis B virus (HBV) genotype C causes prolonged chronic infection and increased risk for liver cancer than genotype B. Our previous work revealed lower replication capacity of wild-type genotype C2 than B2 isolates. HBV DNA replication is driven by pregenomic RNA, which is controlled by core promoter (CP) and further augmented by enhancer I (ENI) and enhancer II (ENII). DNA fragments covering these regulatory elements were amplified from B2 and C2 isolates to generate luciferase reporter constructs. As ENII is fully embedded in CP, we inserted HBV DNA fragments in the sense orientation to determine their combined activities, and in the antisense orientation to measure enhancer activities alone. Genotype B2 isolates displayed higher ENI+ENII+CP, ENII+CP, and ENII activities, but not ENI or ENI+ENII activity, than C2 isolates. The higher ENII+CP activity was partly attributable to 4 positions displaying genotype-specific variability. Exchanging CP region was sufficient to revert the replication phenotypes of several B2 and C2 clones tested. These results suggest that a weaker ENII and/or CP at least partly accounts for the lower replication capacities of wild-type C2 isolates, which could drive the subsequent acquisition of CP mutations. Such mutations increase genome replication and are implicated in liver cancer development.

  18. Redox activity of melanin from the ink sac of Sepia officinalis by means of colorimetric oxidative assay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srisuk, Pathomthat; Correlo, Vitor M; Leonor, Isabel B; Palladino, Pasquale; Reis, Rui L

    2016-01-01

    The redox properties of natural extract from cuttlefish ink sac (Sepia officinalis) and synthetic melanin used as a biomimetic in melanin structural investigation were determined by comparison of this phenol-based heterogeneous pigment with gallic acid used as a standard in Folin-Ciocalteu colorimetric assay widely employed for characterisation of oxidative properties of biomaterials. Reactivity of sepia melanin reported here is much higher than previously indicated and this protocol should allow the redox characterisation of all melanins irrespective of their origin and composition.

  19. Preparation of Thin Melanin-Type Films by Surface-Controlled Oxidation.

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    Salomäki, Mikko; Tupala, Matti; Parviainen, Timo; Leiro, Jarkko; Karonen, Maarit; Lukkari, Jukka

    2016-04-26

    The preparation of thin melanin films suitable for applications is challenging. In this work, we present a new alternative approach to thin melanin-type films using oxidative multilayers prepared by the sequential layer-by-layer deposition of cerium(IV) and inorganic polyphosphate. The interfacial reaction between cerium(IV) in the multilayer and 5,6-dihydroxyindole (DHI) in the adjacent aqueous solution leads to the formation of a thin uniform film. The oxidation of DHI by cerium(IV) proceeds via known melanin intermediates. We have characterized the formed DHI-melanin films using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), atomic force microscopy (AFM), UV-vis spectroscopy, and spectroelectrochemistry. When a five-bilayer oxidative multilayer is used, the film is uniform with a thickness of ca. 10 nm. Its chemical composition, as determined using XPS, is typical for melanin. It is also redox active, and its oxidation occurs in two steps, which can be assigned to semiquinone and quinone formation within the indole structural motif. Oxidative multilayers can also oxidize dopamine, but the reaction stops at the dopamine quinone stage because of the limited amount of the multilayer-based oxidizing agent. However, dopamine oxidation by Ce(IV) was studied also in solution by UV-vis spectroscopy and mass spectrometry in order to verify the reaction mechanism and the final product. In solution, the oxidation of dopamine by cerium shows that the indole ring formation takes place already at low pH and that the mass spectrum of the final product is practically identical with that of commercial melanin. Therefore, layer-by-layer formed oxidative multilayers can be used to deposit functional melanin-type thin films on arbitrary substrates by a surface-controlled reaction.

  20. Melanin dependent survival of Apergillus fumigatus conidia in lung epithelial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amin, Shayista; Thywissen, Andreas; Heinekamp, Thorsten; Saluz, Hans Peter; Brakhage, Axel A

    2014-07-01

    Aspergillus fumigatus is the most important air-borne pathogenic fungus of humans. Upon inhalation of conidia, the fungus makes close contact with lung epithelial cells, which only possess low phagocytic activity. These cells are in particular interesting to address the question whether there is some form of persistence of conidia of A. fumigatus in the human host. Therefore, by also using uracil-auxotrophic mutant strains, we were able to investigate the interaction of A549 lung epithelial cells and A. fumigatus conidia in detail for long periods. Interestingly, unlike professional phagocytes, our study showed that the presence of conidial dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN) melanin enhanced the uptake of A. fumigatus conidia by epithelial cells when compared with non-pigmented pksP mutant conidia. Furthermore, conidia of A. fumigatus were able to survive within epithelial cells. This was due to the presence of DHN melanin in the cell wall of conidia, because melanised wild-type conidia showed a higher survival rate inside epithelial cells and led to inhibition of acidification of phagolysosomes. Both effects were not observed for white (non-melanised) conidia of the pksP mutant strain. Moreover, in contrast to pksP mutant conidia, melanised wild-type conidia were able to inhibit the extrinsic apoptotic pathway in A549 lung epithelial cells even for longer periods. The anti-apoptotic effect was not restricted to conidia, because both conidia-derived melanin ghosts (cell-free DHN melanin) and a different type of melanin, dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) melanin, acted anti-apoptotically. Taken together, these data indicate the possibility of melanin-dependent persistence of conidia in lung epithelial cells.

  1. Melanin-Like Pigment Synthesis by Soil Bacillus weihenstephanensis Isolates from Northeastern Poland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drewnowska, Justyna M; Zambrzycka, Monika; Kalska-Szostko, Beata; Fiedoruk, Krzysztof; Swiecicka, Izabela

    2015-01-01

    Although melanin is known for protecting living organisms from harmful physical and chemical factors, its synthesis is rarely observed among endospore-forming Bacillus cereus sensu lato. Here, for the first time, we reported that psychrotolerant Bacillus weihenstephanensis from Northeastern Poland can produce melanin-like pigment. We assessed physicochemical properties of the pigment and the mechanism of its synthesis in relation to B. weihenstephanensis genotypic and phenotypic characteristics. Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy displayed a stable free radical signal of the pigment from environmental isolates which are consistent with the commercial melanin. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR) and physicochemical tests indicated the phenolic character of the pigment. Several biochemical tests showed that melanin-like pigment synthesis by B. weihenstephanensis was associated with laccase activity. The presence of the gene encoding laccase was confirmed by the next generation whole genome sequencing of one B. weihenstephanensis strain. Biochemical (API 20E and 50CHB tests) and genetic (Multi-locus Sequence Typing, 16S rRNA sequencing, and Pulsed-Field Gel Electrophoresis) characterization of the isolates revealed their close relation to the psychrotrophic B. weihenstephanensis DSMZ 11821 reference strain. The ability to synthesize melanin-like pigment by soil B. weihenstephanensis isolates and their psychrotrophic character seemed to be a local adaptation to a specific niche. Detailed genetic and biochemical analyses of melanin-positive environmental B. weihenstephanensis strains shed some light on the evolution and ecological adaptation of these bacteria. Moreover, our study raised new biotechnological possibilities for the use of water-soluble melanin-like pigment naturally produced by B. weihenstephanensis as an alternative to commercial non-soluble pigment.

  2. Melanin-Like Pigment Synthesis by Soil Bacillus weihenstephanensis Isolates from Northeastern Poland.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Justyna M Drewnowska

    Full Text Available Although melanin is known for protecting living organisms from harmful physical and chemical factors, its synthesis is rarely observed among endospore-forming Bacillus cereus sensu lato. Here, for the first time, we reported that psychrotolerant Bacillus weihenstephanensis from Northeastern Poland can produce melanin-like pigment. We assessed physicochemical properties of the pigment and the mechanism of its synthesis in relation to B. weihenstephanensis genotypic and phenotypic characteristics. Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR spectroscopy displayed a stable free radical signal of the pigment from environmental isolates which are consistent with the commercial melanin. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR and physicochemical tests indicated the phenolic character of the pigment. Several biochemical tests showed that melanin-like pigment synthesis by B. weihenstephanensis was associated with laccase activity. The presence of the gene encoding laccase was confirmed by the next generation whole genome sequencing of one B. weihenstephanensis strain. Biochemical (API 20E and 50CHB tests and genetic (Multi-locus Sequence Typing, 16S rRNA sequencing, and Pulsed-Field Gel Electrophoresis characterization of the isolates revealed their close relation to the psychrotrophic B. weihenstephanensis DSMZ 11821 reference strain. The ability to synthesize melanin-like pigment by soil B. weihenstephanensis isolates and their psychrotrophic character seemed to be a local adaptation to a specific niche. Detailed genetic and biochemical analyses of melanin-positive environmental B. weihenstephanensis strains shed some light on the evolution and ecological adaptation of these bacteria. Moreover, our study raised new biotechnological possibilities for the use of water-soluble melanin-like pigment naturally produced by B. weihenstephanensis as an alternative to commercial non-soluble pigment.

  3. Two-photon excited fluorescence lifetime imaging and spectroscopy of melanins in vitro and in vivo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krasieva, Tatiana B.; Stringari, Chiara; Liu, Feng; Sun, Chung-Ho; Kong, Yu; Balu, Mihaela; Meyskens, Frank L.; Gratton, Enrico; Tromberg, Bruce J.

    2013-03-01

    Changes in the amounts of cellular eumelanin and pheomelanin have been associated with carcinogenesis. The goal of this work is to develop methods based on two-photon-excited-fluorescence (TPEF) for measuring relative concentrations of these compounds. We acquire TPEF emission spectra (λex=1000 nm) of melanin in vitro from melanoma cells, hair specimens, and in vivo from healthy volunteers. We find that the pheomelanin emission peaks at approximately 615 to 625 nm and eumelanin exhibits a broad maximum at 640 to 680 nm. Based on these data we define an optical melanin index (OMI) as the ratio of fluorescence intensities at 645 and 615 nm. The measured OMI for the MNT-1 melanoma cell line is 1.6±0.22 while the Mc1R gene knockdown lines MNT-46 and MNT-62 show substantially greater pheomelanin production (OMI=0.5±0.05 and 0.17±0.03, respectively). The measured values are in good agreement with chemistry-based melanin extraction methods. In order to better separate melanin fluorescence from other intrinsic fluorophores, we perform fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy of in vitro specimens. The relative concentrations of keratin, eumelanin, and pheomelanin components are resolved using a phasor approach for analyzing lifetime data. Our results suggest that a noninvasive TPEF index based on spectra and lifetime could potentially be used for rapid melanin ratio characterization both in vitro and in vivo.

  4. Localization of melanin in conidia of Alternaria alternata using phage display antibodies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carzaniga, Raffaella; Fiocco, Daniela; Bowyer, Paul; O'Connell, Richard J

    2002-03-01

    Melanins derived from 1,8-dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN) are important for the pathogenicity and survival of fungi causing disease in both plants and animals. However, precise information on their location within fungal cell walls is lacking. To obtain antibodies for the immunocytochemical localization of melanin, 83 phage antibodies binding to 1,8-DHN were selected from a naive semisynthetic single-chain Fv (scFv) phage display library. Sequence analysis of the heavy chain binding domains of 17 antibodies showed a high frequency of positively charged amino acids. One antibody, designated M1, was characterized in detail. M1 bound specifically to 1,8-DHN in competitive inhibition enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays, showing no cross-reaction with nine structurally related phenolic compounds. Epitope recognition required two hydroxyl groups in a 1,8 configuration. M1 also bound to naturally occurring melanin isolated from mycelia of Alternaria alternata, suggesting that epitopes remain accessible in polymerized melanin. Transmission electron microscopy-immunogold labeling, using M1 in the form of soluble scFv fragments, showed that melanin was located in the septa and outer (primary) walls of wild-type A. alternata conidia, but not those of an albino mutant, AKT88-1. The M1 antibody provides a new tool for detecting melanized pathogens in plant and animal tissues and for precisely mapping the distribution of the polymer within spores, appressoria, and hyphae.

  5. A novel melanin inhibitor: hydroperoxy traxastane-type triterpene from flowers of Arnica montana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maeda, Kazuhisa; Naitou, Tomoko; Umishio, Kenichi; Fukuhara, Tadao; Motoyama, Akira

    2007-05-01

    We isolated a novel inhibitor of melanin biosynthesis from the flowers of Arnica montana L. (Compositae), and identified it as a traxastane-type triterpene (3beta,16beta-dihydroxy-21alpha-hydroperoxy-20(30)-taraxastene) [1] by means of 1D or 2D-NMR and liquid chromatography/high-resolution mass spectrometry (LC-HR-MS). Compound [1] at the concentration of 0.53 muM completely inhibited melanin accumulation in cultured B16 melanoma cells. It is one of the most potent among known plant inhibitors of melanin biosynthesis in cultured cells, being 50 times more potent than 4-methoxyphenol, which is used as an anti-pigmentation agent. Its mechanism of action is considered to involve inhibition of transcriptional factor MITF-M (melanocyte-type isoform of microphthalmia-associated transcription factor), which would lead to a decrease of tyrosinase and related genes. We confirmed that compound [1] decreased the protein levels of tyrosinase and its related proteins in B16 melanoma cells. Further study revealed that a similar hydroperoxy triterpene also suppressed the melanin pigment accumulation of B16 melanoma cells. These results indicate that the hydroperoxy group may play an important role in the suppression of the melanin accumulation by compound [1].

  6. Role of GTP-CHI links PAH and TH in melanin synthesis in silkworm, Bombyx mori.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Ping; Wang, Jiying; Li, Haiyin; Li, Yan; Chen, Peng; Li, Tian; Chen, Xi; Xiao, Junjie; Zhang, Liang

    2015-08-10

    In insects, pigment patterns are formed by melanin, ommochromes, and pteridines. Here, the effects of pteridine synthesis on melanin formation were studied using 4th instar larvae of a wild-type silkworm strain, dazao (Bombyx mori), with normal color and markings. Results from injected larvae and in vitro integument culture indicated that decreased activity of guanosine triphosphate cyclohydrolase I (GTP-CH I, a rate-limiting enzyme for pteridine synthesis), lowers BH4 (6R-l-erythro-5,6,7,8-tetrahydrobiopterin, a production correlated with GTP-CH I activity) levels and eliminates markings and coloration. The conversion of phenylalanine and tyrosine to melanin was prevented when GTP-CH I was inhibited. When BH4 was added, phenylalanine was converted to tyrosine, and the tyrosine concentration increased. Tyrosine was then converted to melanin to create normal markings and coloration. Decreasing GTP-CH I activity did not affect L-DOPA (3,4-l-dihydroxyphenylalanine). GTP-CH I affected melanin synthesis by generating the BH4 used in two key reaction steps: (1) conversion of phenylalanine to tyrosine by PAH (phenylalanine hydroxylase) and (2) conversion of tyrosine to L-DOPA by TH (tyrosine hydroxylase). Expression profiles of BmGTPCH Ia, BmGTPCH Ib, BmTH, and BmPAH in the integument were consistent with the current findings.

  7. Evolutionary shifts in the melanin-based color system of birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eliason, Chad M; Shawkey, Matthew D; Clarke, Julia A

    2016-02-01

    Melanin pigments contained in organelles (melanosomes) impart earthy colors to feathers. Such melanin-based colors are distributed across birds and thought to be the ancestral color-producing mechanism in birds. However, we have had limited data on melanin-based color and melanosome diversity in Palaeognathae, which includes the flighted tinamous and large-bodied, flightless ratites and is the sister taxon to all other extant birds. Here, we use scanning electron microscopy and spectrophotometry to assess melanosome morphology and quantify reflected color for 19 species within this clade. We find that brown colors in ratites are uniquely associated with elongated melanosomes nearly identical in shape to those associated with black colors. Melanosome and color diversity in large-bodied ratites is limited relative to other birds (including flightless penguins) and smaller bodied basal maniraptoran dinosaur outgroups of Aves, whereas tinamous show a wider range of melanosome forms similar to neognaths. The repeated occurrence of novel melanosome forms in the nonmonophyletic ratites suggests that melanin-based color tracks changes in body size, physiology, or other life history traits associated with flight loss, but not feather morphology. We further anticipate these findings will be useful for future color reconstructions in extinct species, as variation in melanosome shape may potentially be linked to a more nuanced palette of melanin-based colors.

  8. Melanocyte biology and function with reference to oral melanin hyperpigmentation in HIV-seropositive subjects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feller, Liviu; Chandran, Rakesh; Kramer, Beverley; Khammissa, Razia A G; Altini, Mario; Lemmer, Johan

    2014-09-01

    The color of normal skin and of oral mucosa is not determined by the number of melanocytes in the epithelium but rather by their melanogenic activity. Pigmented biopolymers or melanins are synthesized in melanosomes. Tyrosinase is the critical enzyme in the biosynthesis of both brown/black eumelanin and yellow/red pheomelanin. The number of the melanosomes within the melanocytes, the type of melanin within the melanosomes, and the efficacy of the transfer of melanosomes from the melanocytes to the neighboring keratinocytes all play an important role in tissue pigmentation. Melanin production is regulated by locally produced factors including proopiomelanocortin and its derivative peptides, particularly alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH), melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), adrenergic and cholinergic agents, growth factors, cytokines, and nitric oxide. Both eumelanin and pheomelanin can be produced by the same melanocytes, and the proportion of the two melanin types is influenced by the degree of functional activity of the α-MSH/MC1R intracellular pathway. The cause of HIV oral melanosis is not fully understood but may be associated with HIV-induced cytokine dysregulation, with the medications commonly prescribed to HIV-seropositive persons, and with adrenocortical dysfunction, which is not uncommon in HIV-seropositive subjects with AIDS. The purpose of this article is to discuss some aspects of melanocyte biology and HIV-associated oral melanin hyperpigmentation.

  9. The effect of metallothionein 2A core promoter region single-nucleotide polymorphism on accumulation of toxic metals in sinonasal inverted papilloma tissues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Starska, Katarzyna, E-mail: katarzyna.starska@umed.lodz.pl [I Department of Otolaryngology and Laryngological Oncology, Medical University of Łódź, Kopcinskiego 22, 90-153 Łódź (Poland); Bryś, Magdalena; Forma, Ewa [Department of Cytobiochemistry, University of Łódź, Pomorska 142/143, 90-236 Łódź (Poland); Olszewski, Jurek; Pietkiewicz, Piotr [II Department of Otolaryngology and Laryngological Oncology, Medical University of Łódź, Żeromskiego 113, 90-549 Łódź (Poland); Lewy-Trenda, Iwona; Danilewicz, Marian [Department of Pathology, Medical University of Łódź, Pomorska 251, 92-213 Łódź (Poland); Krześlak, Anna [Department of Cytobiochemistry, University of Łódź, Pomorska 142/143, 90-236 Łódź (Poland)

    2015-06-15

    Metallothioneins (MTs) are intracellular thiol-rich heavy metal-binding proteins which join trace metal ions protecting cells against heavy metal toxicity and regulate metal distribution and donation to various enzymes and transcription factors. The goal of this study was to identify the − 5 A/G (rs28366003) single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the core promoter region of the MT2A gene, and to investigate its effect on allele-specific gene expression and Cd, Zn, Cu and Ni content in sinonasal inverted papilloma tissue (IP), with non-cancerous sinonasal mucosa (NCM) as a control. The MT2A promoter region − 5 A/G SNP was identified by restriction fragment length polymorphism using 117 IP and 132 NCM. MT2A gene analysis was performed by quantitative real-time PCR. Metal levels were analyzed by flame atomic absorption spectrometry. The frequency of A allele carriage was 99.2% and 100% in IP and NCM, respectively. The G allele carriage was detected in 23.9% of IP and in 12.1% of the NCM samples. As a result, a significant association of − 5 A/G SNP in MT2A gene with mRNA expression in both groups was determined. A significant association was identified between the − 5 A/G SNP in the MT2A gene with mRNA expression in both groups. A highly significant association was detected between the rs28366003 genotype and Cd and Zn content in IP. Furthermore, significant differences were identified between A/A and A/G genotype with regard to the type of metal contaminant. The Spearman rank correlation results showed the MT2A gene expression and both Cd and Cu levels were negatively correlated. The results obtained in this study suggest that the − 5 A/G SNP in the MT2A gene may have an effect on allele-specific gene expression and toxic metal accumulation in sinonasal inverted papilloma. - Highlights: • MT2A gene expression and metal content in sinonasal inverted papilloma tissues • Association between SNP (rs28366003) and expression of MT2A • Significant

  10. 提升焊管企业核心竞争力的有效途径%Effective Way to Promoting Core Competitiveness of Welded Pipe Enterprise

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    白功利

    2012-01-01

    针对目前国内外焊管产品市场供大于求的局面,以及我国焊管产品出口面临的严峻形势,分析了我国焊管生产技术、机组装备水平及高端焊管产品的研发状况,探讨了提升我国焊管企业核心竞争力的几种有效途径,包括企业集团战略的实施、生产技术和装备水平的不断改进、企业科技创新和产品结构的调整以及品牌战略和人才战略的实施.最后对焊管企业的管理和发展提出了建议.%Aimaing at oversupply situation of welded pipe products in domestic and overseas market, and the severe situation for China welded pipe products export, it analyzed welded pipe production technology, unit equipment level and development status of high-end welded pipe products in China domestic, disscussed several effective ways to promoting core competitiveness of welded pipe enterprise, including implementating corporate group strategy, updating technology and equipment level, technological innovation, adjusting product structure, and carrying out brand strategy and talent strategy. In the end, it put forward proposals to management and development for welded pipe enterprise.

  11. Sleep architecture and homeostasis in mice with partial ablation of melanin-concentrating hormone neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varin, Christophe; Arthaud, Sébastien; Salvert, Denise; Gay, Nadine; Libourel, Paul-Antoine; Luppi, Pierre-Hervé; Léger, Lucienne; Fort, Patrice

    2016-02-01

    Recent reports support a key role of tuberal hypothalamic neurons secreting melanin concentrating-hormone (MCH) in the promotion of Paradoxical Sleep (PS). Controversies remain concerning their concomitant involvement in Slow-Wave Sleep (SWS). We studied the effects of their selective loss achieved by an Ataxin 3-mediated ablation strategy to decipher the contribution of MCH neurons to SWS and/or PS. Polysomnographic recordings were performed on male adult transgenic mice expressing Ataxin-3 transgene within MCH neurons (MCH(Atax)) and their wild-type littermates (MCH(WT)) bred on two genetic backgrounds (FVB/N and C57BL/6). Compared to MCH(WT) mice, MCH(Atax) mice were characterized by a significant drop in MCH mRNAs (-70%), a partial loss of MCH-immunoreactive neurons (-30%) and a marked reduction in brain density of MCH-immunoreactive fibers. Under basal condition, such MCH(Atax) mice exhibited higher PS amounts during the light period and a pronounced SWS fragmentation without any modification of SWS quantities. Moreover, SWS and PS rebounds following 4-h total sleep deprivation were quantitatively similar in MCH(Atax)vs. MCH(WT) mice. Additionally, MCH(Atax) mice were unable to consolidate SWS and increase slow-wave activity (SWA) in response to this homeostatic challenge as observed in MCH(WT) littermates. Here, we show that the partial loss of MCH neurons is sufficient to disturb the fine-tuning of sleep. Our data provided new insights into their contribution to subtle process managing SWS quality and its efficiency rather than SWS quantities, as evidenced by the deleterious impact on two powerful markers of sleep depth, i.e., SWS consolidation/fragmentation and SWA intensity under basal condition and under high sleep pressure.

  12. Chronic loss of melanin-concentrating hormone affects motivational aspects of feeding in the rat.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joram D Mul

    Full Text Available Current epidemic obesity levels apply great medical and financial pressure to the strenuous economy of obesity-prone cultures, and neuropeptides involved in body weight regulation are regarded as attractive targets for a possible treatment of obesity in humans. The lateral hypothalamus and the nucleus accumbens shell (AcbSh form a hypothalamic-limbic neuropeptide feeding circuit mediated by Melanin-Concentrating Hormone (MCH. MCH promotes feeding behavior via MCH receptor-1 (MCH1R in the AcbSh, although this relationship has not been fully characterized. Given the AcbSh mediates reinforcing properties of food, we hypothesized that MCH modulates motivational aspects of feeding.Here we show that chronic loss of the rat MCH-precursor Pmch decreased food intake predominantly via a reduction in meal size during rat development and reduced high-fat food-reinforced operant responding in adult rats. Moreover, acute AcbSh administration of Neuropeptide-GE and Neuropeptide-EI (NEI, both additional neuropeptides derived from Pmch, or chronic intracerebroventricular infusion of NEI, did not affect feeding behavior in adult pmch(+/+ or pmch(-/- rats. However, acute administration of MCH to the AcbSh of adult pmch(-/- rats elevated feeding behavior towards wild type levels. Finally, adult pmch(-/- rats showed increased ex vivo electrically evoked dopamine release and increased limbic dopamine transporter levels, indicating that chronic loss of Pmch in the rat affects the limbic dopamine system.Our findings support the MCH-MCH1R system as an amplifier of consummatory behavior, confirming this system as a possible target for the treatment of obesity. We propose that MCH-mediated signaling in the AcbSh positively mediates motivational aspects of feeding behavior. Thereby it provides a crucial signal by which hypothalamic neural circuits control energy balance and guide limbic brain areas to enhance motivational or incentive-related aspects of food consumption.

  13. Melanin-containing films: growth from dopamine solutions versus layer-by-layer deposition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernsmann, Falk; Ersen, Ovidiu; Voegel, Jean-Claude; Jan, Edward; Kotov, Nicholas A; Ball, Vincent

    2010-10-25

    Films formed by oxidation of dopamine are of interest for functionalisation of solid-liquid interfaces owing to their versatility. However, the ability to modulate the properties of such films, for example, permeability to ionic species and the absorption coefficient, is urgently needed. Indeed, melanin films produced by oxidation of dopamine absorb strongly over the whole UV/Vis part of the electromagnetic spectrum and are impermeable to anions even for a film thickness as low as a few nanometers. Herein we combine oxidation of dopamine to produce a solution containing dopamine-melanin particles and their alternating deposition with poly(diallyldimethylammonium chloride) to produce films which have nearly the same morphology as pure dopamine-melanin films but are less compact, more transparent and more permeable to ferrocyanide anions.

  14. Pigment Melanin Scavenges Nitric Oxide In Vitro: Possible Relevance to Keloid Formation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julian M. Menter

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Recently, nitric oxide (NO has been implicated in the formation of keloids, preferentially formed in dark-skinned persons, and we suspected that pigment melanin itself may play a direct role by adsorbing NO. We tested the ability of cuttlefish sepia melanin to scavenge (adsorb NO, generated in situ by 2-(N.N Diethylamino diazeneolate-2-oxide (DEA/NO, through a dialysis membrane. NO was measured as NO2_ and NO3_ by the Griess method and as N2O3 by trapping experiments with the fluorogenic substrate 4,5-diaminofluorescein (DAF-2. Initial NO2_ and NO3_ concentrations were significantly lower in the test dialyzates than in controls. Scavenging of NO was rapid enough to compete with DAF adduct formation. Both analytical methods gave comparable results. Adsorbed NO and/or its oxidized products may undergo interactions with melanin, adsorbed O2, and/or dermal material that may lead to keloid formation.

  15. Experimentally induced melanin-like pigmentation (thesaurismosis) related to acorn ingestion in Nero Siciliano pigs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lanteri, Giovanni; Marino, Fabio; Liotta, Luigi; Stefano, Carmelo; Macrì, Battesimo

    2011-09-01

    In this study, an experimental challenge was carried out by feeding Nero Siciliano pigs with acorn to evoke melanin-like pigmentation and support the hypothesis that it is caused by ingested material. Twelve pigs were studied, 6 fed with acorns and 6 fed commercial feed. At slaughter, all the animals fed on acorns showed black discolouration of almost all lymph nodes. The lymph nodes were normal in size and shape. Histochemical tests performed on tissues allowed us to identify and differentiate the pigment. Immunohistochemical staining for macrophage markers showed macrophages containing a variable amount of melanin-like granules. Our data, and the well-known steps of melanin formation, confirm that swine enzymes could act on phenolic substances found in acorns.

  16. Skip areas of retained melanin: A clue to the histopathological diagnosis of idiopathic guttate hypomelanosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajiv Joshi

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Biopsy findings in 55 cases of idiopathic guttate hypomelanosis (IGH are reported. Most cases had a flat epidermis with loss of the rete pattern and a thickened orthokeratotic basket weave stratum corneum. The epidermis had markedly decreased to absent melanin in the basal layer and reduced numbers of melanocytes at the dermoepidermal junction. One-third of patients had a sparse perivascular lymphocytic infiltrate, whereas the rest had no significant dermal inflammation. These findings are in concordance with current literature.However, small foci of retained melanin in the basal layer (skip areas alternating with larger areas of melanin loss were present in almost 80% of cases. This finding has not been reported earlier and appears to be quite specific to IGH and may be used as a clue to differentiate IGH from other similar conditions such as vitiligo and guttate morphea.

  17. Quantitative photoacoustics to measure single cell melanin production and nanoparticle attachment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhattacharyya, Kiran; Eshein, Adam; Chandrasekhar, Anand; Viator, John A.

    2015-04-01

    Photoacoustics can be used as a label-free spectroscopic method of identifying pigmented proteins and characterizing their intracellular concentration over time in a single living cell. The authors use a microscopic laser irradiation system with a 5 ns, Q-switched laser focused onto single cells in order to collect photoacoustic responses of melanoma cells from the HS936 cell line and gold nanoparticle labeled breast cancer cells from the T47D cell line. The volume averaged intracellular concentration of melanin is found to range from 29-270 mM for single melanoma cells and the number of gold nanoparticles (AuNP) is shown to range from 850-5900 AuNPs/cell. Additionally, the melanin production response to UV-A light stimulus is measured in four melanoma cells to find a mass production rate of 5.7 pg of melanin every 15 min.

  18. Analysis of the melanin distribution in different ethnic groups by in vivo laser scanning microscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antoniou, C.; Lademann, J.; Richter, H.; Astner, S.; Patzelt, A.; Zastrow, L.; Sterry, W.; Koch, S.

    2009-05-01

    The aim of this study was to determine whether Laser scanning confocal microscopy (LSM) is able to visualize differences in melanin content and distribution in different Skin Phototypes. The investigations were carried out on six healthy volunteers with Skin Phototypes II, IV, and VI. Representative skin samples of Skin Phototypes II, V, and VI were obtained for histological analysis from remaining tissue of skin grafts and were used for LSM-pathologic correlation. LSM evaluation showed significant differences in melanin distribution in Skin Phototypes II, IV, and VI, respectively. Based on the differences in overall reflectivity and image brightness, a visual evaluation scheme showed increasing brightness of the basal and suprabasal layers with increasing Skin Phototypes. The findings correlated well with histological analysis. The results demonstrate that LSM may serve as a promising adjunctive tool for real time assessment of melanin content and distribution in human skin, with numerous clinical applications and therapeutic and preventive implications.

  19. Sexual selection and the function of a melanin-based plumage ornament in polygamous penduline tits Remiz pendulinus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kingma, Sjouke A.; Szentirmai, Istvan; Szekely, Tamas; Bokony, Veronika; Bleeker, Maarten; Liker, Andras; Komdeur, Jan; McGraw, K.

    2008-01-01

    Melanin-based ornaments are often involved in signaling aggression and dominance, and their role in sexual selection is increasingly recognized. We investigated the functions of a melanin-based plumage ornament (facial 'mask') in male Eurasian penduline tits Remiz pendulinus in the contexts of male-

  20. Sexual selection and the function of a melanin-based plumage ornament in polygamous penduline tits Remiz pendulinus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kingma, Sjouke A.; Szentirmai, Istvan; Szekely, Tamas; Bokony, Veronika; Bleeker, Maarten; Liker, Andras; Komdeur, Jan; McGraw, K.

    2008-01-01

    Melanin-based ornaments are often involved in signaling aggression and dominance, and their role in sexual selection is increasingly recognized. We investigated the functions of a melanin-based plumage ornament (facial 'mask') in male Eurasian penduline tits Remiz pendulinus in the contexts of male-

  1. Sexual Dichromatism of the Damselfly Calopteryx japonica Caused by a Melanin-Chitin Multilayer in the Male Wing Veins

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stavenga, Doekele G.; Leertouwer, Hein L.; Hariyama, Takahiko; De Raedt, Hans A.; Wilts, Bodo D.

    2012-01-01

    Mature male Calopteryx japonica damselflies have dark-blue wings, due to darkly coloured wing membranes and blue reflecting veins. The membranes contain a high melanin concentration and the veins have a multilayer of melanin and chitin. Female and immature C. japonica damselflies have brown wings. W

  2. Melanin offers protection against induction of cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers and 6-4 photoproducts by UVB in cultured human melanocytes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smit, N.P.M.; Vink, A.A.; Kolb, R.M.; Steenwinkel, M.J.S.T.; Berg, P.T.M. van den; Nieuwpoort, F. van; Roza, L.; Pavel, S.

    2001-01-01

    The goal of this investigation was to correlate the melanin content in human pigmentary cells with the generation of UVB-induced photoproducts and to examine the relationship between the melanin content and the removal of the photoproducts. Cultured melanocytes from light-skinned individuals

  3. Sexual Dichromatism of the Damselfly Calopteryx japonica Caused by a Melanin-Chitin Multilayer in the Male Wing Veins

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stavenga, Doekele G.; Leertouwer, Hein L.; Hariyama, Takahiko; De Raedt, Hans A.; Wilts, Bodo D.

    2012-01-01

    Mature male Calopteryx japonica damselflies have dark-blue wings, due to darkly coloured wing membranes and blue reflecting veins. The membranes contain a high melanin concentration and the veins have a multilayer of melanin and chitin. Female and immature C. japonica damselflies have brown wings.

  4. Flux pinning mechanism and H{sub c2}-anisotropy in melanin doped bulk MgB{sub 2}

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shahabuddin Shah, M., E-mail: mshahabuddin@ksu.edu.sa; Shahabuddin, Mohammed; Alzayed, Nasser S.; Parakkandy, Jafar M.

    2014-06-15

    Highlights: • Melanin doping enhances superconducting properties of MgB{sub 2}. • Grain boundary pinning is the dominant pinning mechanism in melanin doped MgB{sub 2}. • Experimental J{sub c} data could be very closely fitted using Percolation model. • Anisotropy is reduced due to melanin doping resulting in increase in J{sub c} in high field. • Pinning force maximum is suppressed due to melanin doping. - Abstract: Flux pinning mechanism in melanin doped MgB{sub 2} superconductor has been studied using a scaling law proposed by Dew-Hughes and another method proposed by Eisterer. Our experimental data could be fitted very closely by the aforementioned scaling law. The fitting parameters, the positions of peaks b{sub peak} and k = b{sub peak}/b{sub n} confirm a grain-boundary pinning in the 10% melanin doped sample, while the undoped sample consists of mixed pinning. Furthermore, percolation theory was utilized under grain-boundary approximation to investigate the role of H{sub c2}-anisotropy in the critical current density, and its dependence on applied field as well as temperature. The H{sub c2}-anisotropy decreases with melanin doping resulting in the increase of J{sub c} in high field. There is suppression of flux pinning maximum due to melanin doping, which is found to be the main reason for the degradation of low-field J{sub c}.

  5. Melanin offers protection against induction of cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers and 6-4 photoproducts by UVB in cultured human melanocytes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smit, N.P.M.; Vink, A.A.; Kolb, R.M.; Steenwinkel, M.J.S.T.; Berg, P.T.M. van den; Nieuwpoort, F. van; Roza, L.; Pavel, S.

    2001-01-01

    The goal of this investigation was to correlate the melanin content in human pigmentary cells with the generation of UVB-induced photoproducts and to examine the relationship between the melanin content and the removal of the photoproducts. Cultured melanocytes from light-skinned individuals synthes

  6. In vivo measurements of cutaneous melanin across spatial scales: using multiphoton microscopy and spatial frequency domain spectroscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saager, Rolf B; Balu, Mihaela; Crosignani, Viera; Sharif, Ata; Durkin, Anthony J; Kelly, Kristen M; Tromberg, Bruce J

    2015-06-01

    The combined use of nonlinear optical microscopy and broadband reflectance techniques to assess melanin concentration and distribution thickness in vivo over the full range of Fitzpatrick skin types is presented. Twelve patients were measured using multiphoton microscopy (MPM) and spatial frequency domain spectroscopy (SFDS) on both dorsal forearm and volar arm, which are generally sun-exposed and non-sun-exposed areas, respectively. Both MPM and SFDS measured melanin volume fractions between (skin type I non-sun-exposed) and 20% (skin type VI sun exposed). MPM measured epidermal (anatomical) thickness values ~30-65 μm, while SFDS measured melanin distribution thickness based on diffuse optical path length. There was a strong correlation between melanin concentration and melanin distribution (epidermal) thickness measurements obtained using the two techniques. While SFDS does not have the ability to match the spatial resolution of MPM, this study demonstrates that melanin content as quantified using SFDS is linearly correlated with epidermal melanin as measured using MPM (R² = 0.8895). SFDS melanin distribution thickness is correlated to MPM values (R² = 0.8131). These techniques can be used individually and/or in combination to advance our understanding and guide therapies for pigmentation-related conditions as well as light-based treatments across a full range of skin types.

  7. Innovative use of Mucuna monosperma (Wight) callus cultures for continuous production of melanin by using statistically optimized biotransformation medium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inamdar, Shrirang; Joshi, Swati; Bapat, Vishwas; Jadhav, Jyoti

    2014-01-20

    Melanins are predominantly indolic polymers which are having extensive applications in cosmetics, agriculture and medicine. In the present study, optimization of nutritional parameters influencing melanin production by Mucuna monosperma callus cultures was attempted using the response surface methodology (RSM). Standardization of four factors was carried out using the Box-Behnken design. The optimized levels of factors predicted by the model include tyrosine 0.978gL(-1), pH 5.85, SDS 34.55mgL(-1)and copper sulphate 21.14mgL(-1) tyrosine, which resulted in highest melanin yield of 0.887gL(-1). The optimization of medium using RSM resulted in a 3.06-fold increase in the yield of melanin. The ANOVA analysis showed a significant R(2)-value (0.9995), model F-value (1917.72) and probability (0.0001), with insignificant lack of fit. Optimized medium was used in the laboratory scale column reactor for the continuous production of melanin. Uninterrupted flow column exhibited maximum melanin production rate of 250mgL(-1)h(-1) which is the highest value ever reported using plant as a biotransformation source. Melanin production was confirmed by spectrophotometric and chemical analysis. Thus, this study demonstrates the production of melanin by M. monosperma callus, using a laboratory scale column reactor.

  8. Condition-dependence, pleiotropy and the handicap principle of sexual selection in melanin-based colouration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roulin, Alexandre

    2016-05-01

    The signalling function of melanin-based colouration is debated. Sexual selection theory states that ornaments should be costly to produce, maintain, wear or display to signal quality honestly to potential mates or competitors. An increasing number of studies supports the hypothesis that the degree of melanism covaries with aspects of body condition (e.g. body mass or immunity), which has contributed to change the initial perception that melanin-based colour ornaments entail no costs. Indeed, the expression of many (but not all) melanin-based colour traits is weakly sensitive to the environment but strongly heritable suggesting that these colour traits are relatively cheap to produce and maintain, thus raising the question of how such colour traits could signal quality honestly. Here I review the production, maintenance and wearing/displaying costs that can generate a correlation between melanin-based colouration and body condition, and consider other evolutionary mechanisms that can also lead to covariation between colour and body condition. Because genes controlling melanic traits can affect numerous phenotypic traits, pleiotropy could also explain a linkage between body condition and colouration. Pleiotropy may result in differently coloured individuals signalling different aspects of quality that are maintained by frequency-dependent selection or local adaptation. Colouration may therefore not signal absolute quality to potential mates or competitors (e.g. dark males may not achieve a higher fitness than pale males); otherwise genetic variation would be rapidly depleted by directional selection. As a consequence, selection on heritable melanin-based colouration may not always be directional, but mate choice may be conditional to environmental conditions (i.e. context-dependent sexual selection). Despite the interest of evolutionary biologists in the adaptive value of melanin-based colouration, its actual role in sexual selection is still poorly understood.

  9. Promotion of Human Civilization by Socialism: From the Core Values Perspective of "Harmony"%从“和谐”核心价值观看社会主义对人类文明的进步

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    常宗耀

    2012-01-01

    在社会主义核心价值观的基本范畴中,“和谐”应该是一个最高的范畴。从“和谐”这一社会主义核心价值观的基本范畴看,社会主义对人类文明有着巨大的进步。这些进步在总体上可以归纳为:物质文明、政治文明与精神文明的和谐发展对人类文明的全面进步,个体与群体(社会)的和谐发展对人类文明的全面进步以及人与自然的和谐发展对人类文明的全面进步等。%Among the basic concepts of socialist core values, "harmony" should be the ultimate concept. From the perspective of such basic concept of socialist core values as "harmony," socialism has exerted great promotions for human civilization. These promotions can generally be categorized as the following: the harmonious development of material civilization, political civilization and spiritual civilization comprehensively promotes human civilization; the harmonious development of individuals and collectives (societies) comprehensively promotes human civilization, and the harmonious development of human beings and nature comprehensively promotes human civilization.

  10. Tyrosine and the synthesis of melanin in embryonic cells fromAmbystoma mexicanum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landström, Ulf; Løvtrup, Søren

    1978-09-01

    Explants comprising about 15 cells were dissected from various regions of the blastula ofAmbystoma mexicanum and cultured in Barth's medium. By addition of L-tyrosine to the culture medium it was possible to induce melanin synthesis in three different cells types: undifferentiated embryonic cells, mesenchyme cells and nerve cells. Tyrosine was found to act as an inductor in a very low concentration (1 μM). It is suggested that tyrosine serves both as an inductor and as a substrate for melanin synthesis in the amphibian larva.

  11. Prevention of melanin formation during aryl alcohol oxidase production under growth-limited conditions using an Aspergillus nidulans cell factory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pardo-Planas, Oscar; Prade, Rolf A; Müller, Michael; Atiyeh, Hasan K; Wilkins, Mark R

    2017-11-01

    An Aspergillus nidulans cell factory was genetically engineered to produce an aryl alcohol oxidase (AAO). The cell factory initiated production of melanin when growth-limited conditions were established using stationary plates and shaken flasks. This phenomenon was more pronounced when the strain was cultured in a trickle bed reactor (TBR). This study investigated different approaches to reduce melanin formation in fungal mycelia and liquid medium in order to increase the enzyme production yield. Removal of copper from the medium recipe reduced melanin formation in agar cultures and increased enzyme activities by 48% in agitated liquid cultures. Copper has been reported as a key element for tyrosinase, an enzyme responsible for melanin production. Ascorbic acid (0.44g/L) stopped melanin accumulation, did not affect growth parameters and resulted in AAO activity that was more than two-fold greater than a control treatment with no ascorbic acid. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Protection of melanized Cryptococcus neoformans from lethal dose gamma irradiation involves changes in melanin's chemical structure and paramagnetism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdelahad Khajo

    Full Text Available Certain fungi thrive in highly radioactive environments including the defunct Chernobyl nuclear reactor. Cryptococcus neoformans (C. neoformans, which uses L-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-DOPA to produce melanin, was used here to investigate how gamma radiation under aqueous aerobic conditions affects the properties of melanin, with the aim of gaining insight into its radioprotective role. Exposure of melanized fungal cell in aqueous suspensions to doses of γ-radiation capable of killing 50 to 80% of the cells did not lead to a detectable loss of melanin integrity according to EPR spectra of melanin radicals. Moreover, upon UV-visible (Xe-lamp illumination of melanized cells, the increase in radical population was unchanged after γ-irradiation. Gamma-irradiation of frozen cell suspensions and storage of samples for several days at 77 K however, produced melanin modification noted by a reduced radical population and reduced photoresponse. More direct evidence for structural modification of melanin came from the detection of soluble products with absorbance maxima near 260 nm in supernatants collected after γ-irradiation of cells and cell-free melanin. These products, which include thiobarbituric acid (TBA-reactive aldehydes, were also generated by Fenton reagent treatment of cells and cell-free melanin. In an assay of melanin integrity based on the metal (Bi(+3 binding capacity of cells, no detectable loss in binding was detected after γ-irradiation. Our results show that melanin in C. neoformans cells is susceptible to some damage by hydroxyl radical formed in lethal radioactive aqueous environments and serves a protective role in melanized fungi that involves sacrificial breakdown.

  13. Hepatitis B virus basal core promoter/precore mutants and association with liver cirrhosis in children with chronic hepatitis B virus infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhong, Y W; Di, F L; Liu, C; Zhang, X C; Bi, J F; Li, Y L; Wu, S Q; Dong, H; Liu, L M; He, J; Shi, Y M; Zhang, H F; Zhang, M

    2016-04-01

    We investigated 168 children and analysed the virological characterization and association with disease progression in children with hepatitis B virus (HBV) basal core promoter/precore (BCP/PC) mutants. Among 168 patients with HBV infection (aged 0.5-18 years old, mean 10.1), 86 of them had HBV-related liver cirrhosis (LC) and 82 had HBV-related chronic hepatitis B (CHB). A direct sequencing method was employed to determine the HBV genotypes and the mutations in BCP/PC regions. In all, 133 of them were infected with genotype C viruses (79.17%); only 35 patients (20.83%) were infected with genotype B viruses. Both LC patients and CHB patients had significantly higher ratios of genotype C when compared with the ratios of genotype B (83.7%-16.3% versus 74.4%-25.6%). For patients with CHB, the prevalence of BCP/PC wild-type viruses was 52.4%; but this was only 4.7% in patients with LC. The C1653T, T1753C, A1762T/G1764A and G1896A mutations had a significantly higher prevalence in patients with LC. Among all the patients with genotype B viruses, those with LC had lower HBV DNA levels and higher G1899A mutation frequency than patients with CHB. Among all the patients with genotype C viruses, the patients with LC had higher prevalence of C1653T, A1762T/G1764A and G1896A mutation frequency, higher hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg) -negative rates, lower viral load, lower elevated alanine aminotransferase and lower anti-HBe positive rates than CHB patients. The HBV BCP/PC variants were more common in HBeAg-negative LC patients than in the CHB group (BCP, 53.4% versus 15.6%; PC, 18.6% versus 3.7%, respectively, p viruses, high viral load and C1653T, A1762T/G1764A, G1896A mutant viruses, were more susceptible to developing LC. Copyright © 2015 European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Association of core promoter mutations of hepatitis B virus and viral load is different in HBeAg(+) and HBeAg(-) patients

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Andi Utama; Benyamin Lukito; Tantoro Harmono; Nasrul Zubir; Julius; Soewignjo Soemohardjo; Laurentius Adrianus Lesmana; Ali Sulaiman; Susan Tai; Marlinang Diarta Siburian; Sigit Purwantomo; Mariana Destila Bayu Intan; Tri Shinta Kurniasih; Rino Alvani Gani; Wenny Astuti Achwan; Arnelis; Syafruddin AR Lelosutan

    2011-01-01

    AIM: To identify the prevalence of hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg) and to assess the association of hepatitis B virus (HBV) core promoter mutations and viral load in Indonesian patients.METHODS: Sixty-four patients with chronic hepatitis,65 with liver cirrhosis and 50 with hepatocellular carcinoma were included in this study. HBeAg and hepatitis B e antibody (HBeAb) tests were performed using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and the mutations were analyzed by sequencing. Viral load was measured by real-time polymerase chain reaction.RESULTS: Of 179 patients, 108 (60.3%) were HBeAg(-) and 86 (79.6%) of these HBeAg(-) patients had been seroconverted. The A1896 mutation was not found in HBeAg(+) patients, however, this mutation was detected in 70.7% of HBeAg(-) patients. This mutation was frequently found when HBeAg was not expressed (87.7%), compared to that found in HBeAg seroconverted patients (65.1%). The A1899 mutation was also more prevalent in HBeAg(-) than in HBeAg(+) patients (P = 0.004). The T1762/A1764 mutation was frequently found in both HBeAg(+) and HBeAg(-) patients, however,the prevalence of this mutation did not significantly differ among the two groups (P = 0.054). In HBeAg(+)patients, the T1762/A1764 mutation was correlated with lower HBV DNA (P < 0.001). The A1899 mutation did not correlate with HBV DNA (P = 0.609). In HBeAg(-)patients, the T1762/A1764 mutation alone was not correlated with HBV DNA (P = 0.095), however, the presence of either the T1762/A1764 or A1896 mutations was associated with increased HBV DNA (P < 0.001).CONCLUSION: The percentage of HBeAg(-) patients is high in Indonesia, and most of the HBeAg(-) patients had been seroconverted. The A1896 mutation was most likely the major cause of HBeAg loss. The T1762/A1764 mutation alone was associated with lower viral loads in HBeAg(+) patients, but not in HBeAg(-) patients.

  15. Aspergillus Cell Wall Melanin Blocks LC3-Associated Phagocytosis to Promote Pathogenicity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Akoumianaki, T.; Kyrmizi, I.; Valsecchi, I.; Gresnigt, M.S.; Samonis, G.; Drakos, E.; Boumpas, D.; Muszkieta, L.; Prevost, M.C.; Kontoyiannis, D.P.; Chavakis, T.; Netea, M.G.; Veerdonk, F.L. van de; Brakhage, A.A.; El-Benna, J.; Beauvais, A.; Latge, J.P.; Chamilos, G.

    2016-01-01

    Concealing pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) is a principal strategy used by fungi to avoid immune recognition. Surface exposure of PAMPs during germination can leave the pathogen vulnerable. Accordingly, beta-glucan surface exposure during Aspergillus fumigatus germination activates an

  16. High refractive index of melanin in shiny occipital feathers of a bird of paradise

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stavenga, Doekele G.; Leertouwer, Heinrich; Osorio, Daniel C.; Wilts, Bodo D.

    2015-01-01

    Male Lawes's Parotia, a bird of paradise, use the highly directional reflection of the structurally colored, brilliant-silvery occipital feathers in their courtship display. As in other birds, the structural coloration is produced by ordered melanin pigmentation. The barbules of the Parotia's occipi

  17. Combined effects of Cu and UVR on survival and melanin synthesis in Chironomus riparius larvae

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Baat, M.L.; van Gemert, M.; Verweij, R.A.; Loayza Muro, R.A.; Kraak, M.H.S.

    2012-01-01

    The tropical Andes encompass vast areas with altitudes above 4000 m, where the combination of high UV radiation and metal pollution creates environments that challenge the survival and persistence of aquatic life. Since the pigment melanin counteracts the negative effects of UVR, and has the additio

  18. High refractive index of melanin in shiny occipital feathers of a bird of paradise

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stavenga, Doekele G.; Leertouwer, Heinrich; Osorio, Daniel C.; Wilts, Bodo D.

    Male Lawes's Parotia, a bird of paradise, use the highly directional reflection of the structurally colored, brilliant-silvery occipital feathers in their courtship display. As in other birds, the structural coloration is produced by ordered melanin pigmentation. The barbules of the Parotia's

  19. Combined effects of Cu and UVR on survival and melanin synthesis in Chironomus riparius larvae

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Baat, M.L.; van Gemert, M.; Verweij, R.A.; Loayza Muro, R.A.; Kraak, M.H.S.

    2012-01-01

    The tropical Andes encompass vast areas with altitudes above 4000 m, where the combination of high UV radiation and metal pollution creates environments that challenge the survival and persistence of aquatic life. Since the pigment melanin counteracts the negative effects of UVR, and has the

  20. Effect of Purified Mushroom Tyrosinase on Melanin Content and Melanogenic Protein Expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamal Uddin Zaidi

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In mammalian melanocytes, melanosome is a highly specialized organelle where melanin is synthesized. Melanin synthesis is controlled by tyrosinase, the vital enzyme in melanogenic pathway. The present investigation is based on an effect of purified mushroom tyrosinase of Agaricus bisporus on B16F10 melanocytes for the melanin production via blocking pigment cell machinery. Using B16F10 melanocytes showed that the stimulation of melanogenesis by purified tyrosinase is due to increased tyrosinase absorption. Cellular tyrosinase activity and melanin content in B16F10 melanocytes were increased by purified tyrosinase in a dose-dependent manner. Western blot analysis revealed that cellular tyrosinase levels were enhanced after treatment with purified tyrosinase for 48 hours. Furthermore, tyrosinase induced phosphorylation of cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB in a dose-dependent manner. The purified tyrosinase-mediated increase of tyrosinase activity was significantly attenuated by H89, LY294002, Ro-32-0432, and PD98059, cAMP-dependent protein kinase inhibitors. The results indicate that purified tyrosinase can be used as contestant for the treatment of vitiligous skin conditions.

  1. Interpreting melanin-based coloration through deep time: a critical review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindgren, Johan; Moyer, Alison; Schweitzer, Mary H.; Sjövall, Peter; Uvdal, Per; Nilsson, Dan E.; Heimdal, Jimmy; Engdahl, Anders; Gren, Johan A.; Schultz, Bo Pagh; Kear, Benjamin P.

    2015-01-01

    Colour, derived primarily from melanin and/or carotenoid pigments, is integral to many aspects of behaviour in living vertebrates, including social signalling, sexual display and crypsis. Thus, identifying biochromes in extinct animals can shed light on the acquisition and evolution of these biological traits. Both eumelanin and melanin-containing cellular organelles (melanosomes) are preserved in fossils, but recognizing traces of ancient melanin-based coloration is fraught with interpretative ambiguity, especially when observations are based on morphological evidence alone. Assigning microbodies (or, more often reported, their ‘mouldic impressions’) as melanosome traces without adequately excluding a bacterial origin is also problematic because microbes are pervasive and intimately involved in organismal degradation. Additionally, some forms synthesize melanin. In this review, we survey both vertebrate and microbial melanization, and explore the conflicts influencing assessment of microbodies preserved in association with ancient animal soft tissues. We discuss the types of data used to interpret fossil melanosomes and evaluate whether these are sufficient for definitive diagnosis. Finally, we outline an integrated morphological and geochemical approach for detecting endogenous pigment remains and associated microstructures in multimillion-year-old fossils. PMID:26290071

  2. Melanin-based color of plumage: role of condition and of feathers' microstructure

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Alba, Liliana; Van Hemert, Caroline R.; Spencer, Karen A.; Heidinger, Britt J.; Gill, Lisa; Evans, Neil P.; Monaghan, Pat; Handel, Colleen M.; Shawkey, Matthew D.

    2014-01-01

    Whether melanin-based colors honestly signal a bird's condition during the growth of feathers is controversial, and it is unclear if or how the physiological processes underlying melanogenesis or color-imparting structural feather microstructure may be adversely affected by condition. Here we report results from two experiments designed to measure the effect of condition on expression of eumelanic and pheomelanic coloration in black-capped chickadees (Poecile atricapillus) and zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata), respectively. In chickadees, we compared feathers of birds affected and unaffected by avian keratin disorder, while in zebra finches we compared feathers of controls with feathers of those subjected to an unpredictable food supply during development. In both cases we found that control birds had brighter feathers (higher total reflectance) and more barbules, but similar densities of melanosomes. In addition, the microstructure of the feathers explained variation in color more strongly than did melanosome density. Together, these results suggest that melanin-based coloration may in part be condition-dependent, but that this may be driven by changes in keratin and feather development, rather than melanogenesis itself. Researchers should be cautious when assigning variation in melanin-based color to melanin alone and microstructure of the feather should be taken into account.

  3. Effect of Purified Mushroom Tyrosinase on Melanin Content and Melanogenic Protein Expression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ali, Ayesha S.

    2016-01-01

    In mammalian melanocytes, melanosome is a highly specialized organelle where melanin is synthesized. Melanin synthesis is controlled by tyrosinase, the vital enzyme in melanogenic pathway. The present investigation is based on an effect of purified mushroom tyrosinase of Agaricus bisporus on B16F10 melanocytes for the melanin production via blocking pigment cell machinery. Using B16F10 melanocytes showed that the stimulation of melanogenesis by purified tyrosinase is due to increased tyrosinase absorption. Cellular tyrosinase activity and melanin content in B16F10 melanocytes were increased by purified tyrosinase in a dose-dependent manner. Western blot analysis revealed that cellular tyrosinase levels were enhanced after treatment with purified tyrosinase for 48 hours. Furthermore, tyrosinase induced phosphorylation of cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) response element-binding protein (CREB) in a dose-dependent manner. The purified tyrosinase-mediated increase of tyrosinase activity was significantly attenuated by H89, LY294002, Ro-32-0432, and PD98059, cAMP-dependent protein kinase inhibitors. The results indicate that purified tyrosinase can be used as contestant for the treatment of vitiligous skin conditions. PMID:27699070

  4. Metal exposure influences the melanin and carotenoid-based colorations in great tits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giraudeau, M; Mateos-Gonzalez, F; Cotín, J; Pagani-Nuñez, E; Torné-Noguera, A; Senar, J C

    2015-11-01

    Metals are naturally found in the environment but are also emitted through anthropogenic activities, raising some concerns about the potential deleterious effects of these elements on wildlife. The potential effects of metals on bird coloration have been the focus of several recent studies since animal colored-signals often reflect the physiology of their bearers and are thus used by animals to assess the quality of another individual as a mate or competitor. These studies have shown that the melanin pigmentation seems to be positively associated and the carotenoid-based coloration negatively associated with metal exposure in wild birds. Although these studies have been very useful to show the associations between metal exposure and coloration, only few of them have actually quantified the levels of metal exposure at the individual level; always focusing on one or two of them. Here, we measured the concentrations of eight metals in great tits' feathers and then assessed how these levels of metals were associated with the carotenoid and melanin-based colorations. We found that the melanin pigmentation was positively associated with the copper concentration and negatively correlated with the chromium concentration in feathers. In addition, we have shown that the carotenoid-based coloration was negatively associated with the feather's mercury concentration. This study is the first one to identify some metals that might affect positively and negatively the deposition of melanin and carotenoid into the plumage of wild birds.

  5. Mechanistic insights into the bleaching of melanin by alkaline hydrogen peroxide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, R A W; Garrett, B; Naqvi, K R; Fülöp, A; Godfrey, S P; Marsh, J M; Chechik, V

    2017-07-01

    This work aims to determine the roles of reactive oxygen species HO∙ and HO2(-) in the bleaching of melanins by alkaline hydrogen peroxide. Experiments using melanosomes isolated from human hair indicated that the HO∙ radical generated in the outside solution does not contribute significantly to bleaching. However, studies using soluble Sepia melanin demonstrated that both HO2(-) and HO∙ will individually bleach melanin. Additionally, when both oxidants are present, bleaching is increased dramatically in both rate and extent. Careful experimental design enabled the separation of the roles and effects of these key reactive species, HO∙ and HO2(-). Rationalisation of the results presented, and review of previous literature, allowed the postulation of a simplified general scheme whereby the strong oxidant HO∙ is able to pre-oxidise melanin units to o-quinones enabling more facile ring opening by the more nucleophilic HO2(-). In this manner the efficiency of the roles of both species is maximised. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Silver nanoparticles mediated altered gene expression of melanin biosynthesis genes in Bipolaris sorokiniana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mishra, Sandhya; Singh, H B

    2015-03-01

    Melanin production in many fungal phytopathogens has been investigated to play direct or indirect role in pathogenesis. However, in Bipolaris sorokiniana, the spot blotch pathogen of wheat, much less is known about the role melanin play in pathogenesis. As an extension of our previous report, the present study aims to investigate the plausible association between melanin production and virulence factor in B. sorokiniana. In the previous study, we carried out analysis on the antifungal efficacy of biosynthesized silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) against B. sorokiniana. The present investigation revealed the gene expression analysis of melanin biosynthesis genes viz. polyketide synthase (PKS1) and scytalone dehydratase (SCD1) under the influence of AgNPs. The 0.05mg/ml concentration of AgNPs yielded noticeable inhibition of B. sorokiniana growth, while 0.1mg/ml concentration of AgNPs accounted for complete inhibition of pathogen growth. In addition, the semiquantitative RT-PCR analysis exhibited reduced expression of PKS1 and SCD1 under the influence of AgNPs treatment. Furthermore, the qRT-PCR demonstrated 6.47 and 1.808 fold significant decrease in the expression pattern of PKS1 and SCD1, respectively, in B. sorokiniana treated with AgNPs. The present study provides probable understanding of molecular events underlying the antifungal role of AgNPs against B. sorokiniana.

  7. Melanin-independent accumulation of turgor pressure in appressoria of Phakopsora pachyrhizi

    Science.gov (United States)

    In some plant pathogenic fungi, turgor pressure accumulation in appressoria produces a mechanical force enabling the direct penetration of hyphae through the plant cell epidermis. Melanin has been reported to function as an impermeable barrier to osmolytes, which allow appressoria to accumulate high...

  8. Melanins and melanogenesis: from pigment cells to human health and technological applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    d'Ischia, Marco; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Cicoira, Fabio; Di Mauro, Eduardo; Garcia-Borron, Josè Carlos; Commo, Stephane; Galván, Ismael; Ghanem, Ghanem; Kenzo, Koike; Meredith, Paul; Pezzella, Alessandro; Santato, Clara; Sarna, Tadeusz; Simon, John D; Zecca, Luigi; Zucca, Fabio A; Napolitano, Alessandra; Ito, Shosuke

    2015-09-01

    During the past decade, melanins and melanogenesis have attracted growing interest for a broad range of biomedical and technological applications. The burst of polydopamine-based multifunctional coatings in materials science is just one example, and the list may be expanded to include melanin thin films for organic electronics and bioelectronics, drug delivery systems, functional nanoparticles and biointerfaces, sunscreens, environmental remediation devices. Despite considerable advances, applied research on melanins and melanogenesis is still far from being mature. A closer intersectoral interaction between research centers is essential to raise the interests and increase the awareness of the biomedical, biomaterials science and hi-tech sectors of the manifold opportunities offered by pigment cells and related metabolic pathways. Starting from a survey of biological roles and functions, the present review aims at providing an interdisciplinary perspective of melanin pigments and related pathway with a view to showing how it is possible to translate current knowledge about physical and chemical properties and control mechanisms into new bioinspired solutions for biomedical, dermocosmetic, and technological applications.

  9. Near-infrared autofluorescence imaging of cutaneous melanins and human skin in vivo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Xiao; Lui, Harvey; McLean, David I.; Zeng, Haishan

    2009-03-01

    In recent years, near-infrared (NIR) autofluorescence imaging has been explored as a novel technique for tissue evaluation and diagnosis. We present an NIR fluorescence imaging system optimized for the dermatologic clinical setting, with particular utility for the direct characterization of cutaneous melanins in vivo. A 785-nm diode laser is coupled into a ring light guide to uniformly illuminate the skin. A bandpass filter is used to purify the laser light for fluorescence excitation, while a long-pass filter is used to block the main laser wavelength but pass the spontaneous components for NIR reflectance imaging. A computer-controlled filter holder is used to switch these two filters to select between reflectance and fluorescence imaging modes. Both the reflectance and fluorescence photons are collected by an NIR-sensitive charge-coupled device (CCD) camera to form the respective images. Preliminary results show that cutaneous melanin in pigmented skin disorders emits higher NIR autofluorescence than surrounding normal tissue. This confirmed our previous findings from NIR fluorescence spectroscopy study of cutaneous melanins and provides a new approach to directly image the distributions of cutaneous melanins in the skin. In-vivo NIR autofluorescence images may be useful for clinical evaluation and diagnosis of pigmented skin lesions, including melanoma.

  10. GAMMA RADIATION INTERACTS WITH MELANIN TO ALTER ITS OXIDATION-REDUCTION POTENTIAL AND RESULTS IN ELECTRIC CURRENT PRODUCTION

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Turick, C.; Ekechukwu, A.; Milliken, C.

    2011-05-17

    The presence of melanin pigments in organisms is implicated in radioprotection and in some cases, enhanced growth in the presence of high levels of ionizing radiation. An understanding of this phenomenon will be useful in the design of radioprotective materials. However, the protective mechanism of microbial melanin in ionizing radiation fields has not yet been elucidated. Here we demonstrate through the electrochemical techniques of chronoamperometry, chronopotentiometry and cyclic voltammetry that microbial melanin is continuously oxidized in the presence of gamma radiation. Our findings establish that ionizing radiation interacts with melanin to alter its oxidation-reduction potential. Sustained oxidation resulted in electric current production and was most pronounced in the presence of a reductant, which extended the redox cycling capacity of melanin. This work is the first to establish that gamma radiation alters the oxidation-reduction behavior of melanin, resulting in electric current production. The significance of the work is that it provides the first step in understanding the initial interactions between melanin and ionizing radiation taking place and offers some insight for production of biomimetic radioprotective materials.

  11. Surface structure characterization of Aspergillus fumigatus conidia mutated in the melanin synthesis pathway and their human cellular immune response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bayry, Jagadeesh; Beaussart, Audrey; Dufrêne, Yves F; Sharma, Meenu; Bansal, Kushagra; Kniemeyer, Olaf; Aimanianda, Vishukumar; Brakhage, Axel A; Kaveri, Srini V; Kwon-Chung, Kyung J; Latgé, Jean-Paul; Beauvais, Anne

    2014-08-01

    In Aspergillus fumigatus, the conidial surface contains dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN)-melanin. Six-clustered gene products have been identified that mediate sequential catalysis of DHN-melanin biosynthesis. Melanin thus produced is known to be a virulence factor, protecting the fungus from the host defense mechanisms. In the present study, individual deletion of the genes involved in the initial three steps of melanin biosynthesis resulted in an altered conidial surface with masked surface rodlet layer, leaky cell wall allowing the deposition of proteins on the cell surface and exposing the otherwise-masked cell wall polysaccharides at the surface. Melanin as such was immunologically inert; however, deletion mutant conidia with modified surfaces could activate human dendritic cells and the subsequent cytokine production in contrast to the wild-type conidia. Cell surface defects were rectified in the conidia mutated in downstream melanin biosynthetic pathway, and maximum immune inertness was observed upon synthesis of vermelone onward. These observations suggest that although melanin as such is an immunologically inert material, it confers virulence by facilitating proper formation of the A. fumigatus conidial surface.

  12. Real-time in vivo confocal laser scanning microscopy of melanin-containing cells: A promising diagnostic intervention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiang, Wenzhong; Song, Xiuzu; Peng, Jianzhong; Xu, Aie; Bi, Zhigang

    2015-12-01

    The use of noninvasive imaging techniques to evaluate different types of skin lesions is increasing popular. In vivo confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM) is a new method for high resolution non-invasive imaging of intact skin in situ and in vivo. Although many studies have investigated melanin-containing cells in lesions by in vivo CLSM, few studies have systematically characterized melanin-containing cells based on their morphology, size, arrangement, density, borders, and brightness. In this study, the characteristics of melanin-containing cells were further investigated by in vivo CLSM. A total of 130 lesions, including common nevi, giant congenital pigmented nevi, vitiligo, melasma, melanoma, and chronic eczema, were imaged by in vivo CLSM. This research helps dermatologists understand the characteristics of melanin-containing cells and facilitate the clinical application of melanin-containing cells in the investigation of dermatological disease. In summary, melanin-containing cells include keratinocytes, melanocytes, macrophages, and melanocytic skin tumor cells. Our study presents the CLSM characteristics of melanin-containing cells to potentially facilitate in vivo diagnosis based on shape, size, arrangement, density, borders, and brightness.

  13. Insulin-sensitizing and beneficial lipid-metabolic effects of the water-soluble melanin complex extracted from Inonotus obliquus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jung-Han; Hyun, Chang-Kee

    2014-09-01

    Inonotus obliquus has been traditionally used for treatment of metabolic diseases; however, the mechanism remains to be elucidated. In this study, we found that the water-soluble melanin complex extracted from I. obliquus improved insulin sensitivity and reduced adiposity in high fat (HF)-fed obese mice. When the melanin complex was treated to 3T3-L1 adipocytes, insulin-stimulated glucose uptake was increased significantly, and its phosphoinositide 3-kinase-dependent action was proven with wortmannin treatment. Additionally, dose-dependent increases in Akt phosphorylation and glucose transporter 4 translocation into the plasma membrane were observed in melanin complex-treated cells. Adiponectin gene expression in 3T3-L1 cells incubated with melanin complex increased which was corroborated by increased AMP-activated protein kinase phosphorylation in HepG2 and C2C12 cells treated with conditioned media from the 3T3-L1 culture. Melanin complex-treated 3T3-L1 cells showed no significant change in expression of several lipogenic genes, whereas enhanced expressions of fatty acid oxidative genes were observed. Similarly, the epididymal adipose tissue of melanin complex-treated HF-fed mice had higher expression of fatty acid oxidative genes without significant change in lipogenic gene expression. Together, these results suggest that the water-soluble melanin complex of I. obliquus exerts antihyperglycemic and beneficial lipid-metabolic effects, making it a candidate for promising antidiabetic agent.

  14. Role of melanin in release of extracellular enzymes and selection of aggressive isolates of Bipolaris sorokiniana in barley.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chand, Ramesh; Kumar, Manoj; Kushwaha, Chanda; Shah, Kavita; Joshi, Arun K

    2014-08-01

    Eighteen barley isolates of Bipolaris sorokiniana belonging to wild and clonal type of black, mixed and white subpopulations were quantitatively assayed for their melanin content and aggressiveness with respect to production of some of the extracellular enzymes such as cellulase, pectinase, amylase and protease. Cellulase and pectinase constituted major portion of the enzymes recovered from the black, mixed and white isolates. Enzyme production and aggressiveness were relatively higher in melanin devoid or low melanin isolates. The melanin deficient isolates were also differentiated from black and mixed isolates on the basis of variation in internal transcribed spacer region of the ribosomal DNA. Higher enzyme productions positively correlated with area under disease progress curve (AUDPC) and lesion development. Melanin content was negatively correlated with extracellular enzymes and aggressiveness of the isolates. Based on melanin content, lesion size, AUDPC and extracellular enzymes, the isolates were grouped in two major clusters (I and II) with further division of cluster II into two sub-clusters (II-A and II-B). The results appears to indicate a possible role of melanin in release of extracellular enzymes and hence in evolution and selection of aggressive isolates of B. sorokiniana in barley.

  15. Melanin is required for the formation of the multi-cellular conidia in the endophytic fungus Pestalotiopsis microspora.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Xi; Huo, Liang; Liu, Heng; Chen, Longfei; Wang, Yu; Zhu, Xudong

    2015-10-01

    Melanin plays an important role in regulating various biological processes in many fungi. However, its biological role in conidiation remains largely elusive. We report here that conidia production, morphogenesis, integrity, germination and their viability in Pestalotiopsis microspora require the polyketide-derived melanin. A polyketide synthase gene, pks1, was identified and demonstrated responsible for melanin biosynthesis in this fungus. A targeted deletion mutant strain Δpks1 displayed a defect in pigmentation of conidia and had an albino colonial phenotype. Interestingly, Δpks1 produced approximately 6-fold as many conidia as the wild type did, suggesting a negative modulation of melanin on conidia production in this fungus. Moreover, the conidia failed to develop into the normal five-cell morphology, rather the three main-body cells separated via constriction at the original septum position to generate three independent mutant conidia. This result suggests a novel role of melanin in the formation of the multi-cellular conidia. Germ tubes could develop from the three different types of mutant conidia and kept elongating, despite a significantly lower germination rate was observed for them. Still more, the unpigmented conidia became permeable to Calcofluor White and DAPI, suggesting the integrity of the conidia was impaired. Deliberate inhibition of melanin biosynthesis by a specific inhibitor, tricyclazole, led to a similar phenotypes. This work demonstrates a new function of fungal melanin in conidial development.

  16. Unlocking the molecular structure of fungal melanin using 13C biosynthetic labeling and solid-state NMR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tian, Shiying; Garcia-Rivera, Javier; Yan, Bin; Casadevall, Arturo; Stark, Ruth E

    2003-07-15

    Melanins are enigmatic pigments found in all biological kingdoms that are associated with a variety of functions, including microbial virulence. Despite being ubiquitous in nature, melanin pigments have long resisted atomic-level structural examination because of their insolubility and amorphous organization. Cryptococcus neoformans is a human pathogenic fungus that melanizes only when provided with exogenous substrate, thus offering a unique system for exploring questions related to melanin structure at the molecular level. We have exploited the requirement for exogenous substrate in melanin synthesis as well as the capabilities of high-resolution solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) to establish the predominantly aliphatic composition of l-dopa melanin and to introduce (13)C labels that permit the identification of proximal carbons in the developing biopolymer. By swelling solid melanin samples in organic solvents and using two-dimensional heteronuclear NMR in conjunction with magic-angle spinning, we have identified chemical bonding patterns typical of alkane, alkene, alcohol, ketone, ester, and indole functional groups. These findings demonstrate the feasibility of a novel approach to determining the structure of melanin using metabolic labeling and NMR spectroscopy.

  17. Melanin and Cryptococcus neoformans%黑素与新生隐球菌

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    王雪连; 孔庆涛; 王高峰; 刘芳; 邓德权; 桑红

    2011-01-01

    黑素的产生与多种微生物的毒力相关.新生隐球菌主要通过酚氧化酶(漆酶)合成黑素,黑素主要通过抵抗宿主微生物杀伤机制和影响宿主免疫应答来致病.主要就新生隐球菌黑素的微观结构、生物合成,漆酶的分子调节,黑素与新生隐球菌毒力的关系,黑化对真菌生存的影响及与抗真菌治疗的关系等方面进行概述,以期通过对黑素特征的理解为抗真菌药物的开发和对疾病的治疗策略选择提供帮助.%The production of melanin is associated with the virulence of various microorganisms.Cryptococcus neoformans produces melanin mainly via phenoloxidase(laccase)pathway.Melanin contributes to virulence likely by reducing the susceptibility of melanized fungi to host defense mechanisms and affecting immune responses in infected hosts.This review mainly focuses on the microstructure and biosynthesis of Cryptococcus neoformans melanin, molecular regulation of laecase, relationship between melanin and Cryptococcus neoformans virulence, effects of melanization on the survival of fungi, relationship between melanization and antifungal treatment, ete, which may facilitate the design and development of antifungal agents and strategies.

  18. Melanin-targeted nonlinear microscopy for label-free molecular diagnosis and staining (Conference Presentation)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warren, Warren S.

    2017-02-01

    Visible absorption in tissue is dominated by a very small number of chromophores (hemoglobins and melanins) with broad optical spectra; for melanins in particular, the optical absorption spectrum is typically featureless. In addition, scattering limits penetration depth. As a result, the most common microscopy application by far is with excised tissue, which can be stained. However, nonlinear optical methods have the additional advantages of greater penetration depth and reduced sensitivity to scattering. Traditional nonlinear microscopy relies on mechanisms which produce light of a different color than the irradiating lasers, such as second harmonic generation or two photon induced fluorescence, and this contrast is sparse in biological issue without expressing or injecting different chromophores. Recently, stable laser sources and pulse shaping/pulse train modulation methods have made it possible to detect a much wider range of nonlinear molecular signatures, even at modest laser powers (much less than a laser pointer). Here we show the utility of a variety of such signatures (pump-probe, pulse-shaped stimulated Raman, cross-phase modulation) to quantitatively image the biochemical composition of transparent or pigmented tissue in a variety of applications, ranging from thin, unstained tissue sections to live knockout mice. The rich biochemical information provided by this method can be used as an indicator of melanocyte activity, which in turn (for example) reflects the status of melanocytic lesions. Comparisons with model systems (synthetic melanin nanoparticles, sepia melanin) and analysis of melanin degradation pathways in vivo have led to a quantitative understanding of the molecular basis of these changes.

  19. Characterization of human hair melanin and its degradation products by means of magnetic resonance techniques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghiani, Simona; Baroni, Simona; Burgio, Daniela; Digilio, Giuseppe; Fukuhara, Masaki; Martino, Paola; Monda, Keiji; Nervi, Carlo; Kiyomine, Akira; Aime, Silvio

    2008-05-01

    Melanin granules (MGs) have been extracted from human Chinese black hairs by either acid hydrolysis (CH-type MGs) or enzymatic digestion (CP-type MGs), and their chemical structure investigated at the solid state by means of (13)C cross polarization magic angle spinning (CPMAS NMR) and EPR spectroscopy. Both types of MGs contain a large amount of protein that is tightly bound to the true melanin polymer, with CP-type MGs having a larger protein content than CH-type ones. Moreover, MGs may also contain variable amounts of lipid-like material. A high amount of paramagnetic metals is detected by EPR in CP-type MGs, in particular Fe(III). Iron can be bound in two chemical forms: as isolated high spin Fe(III) ions with rhombic symmetry and as small oxy-hydroxy Fe(III) aggregates. Iron is poorly available to chelators. CH-type MGs contain much fewer metals. CP-type MGs have then been subjected to partial bleaching by hydrogen peroxide in ammonia, yielding a residual solid, called residual oxidized melanin (ROM) and a soluble but still pigmented fraction called melanin free acid (MFA). MFA can be isolated by precipitation at acidic pH. The (13)C-CPMAS NMR and EPR spectra of these derivatives indicated that ROM has a structure very similar to that of parent MGs, whereas MFA shows a decrease of the protein content with respect to the melanin and a decreased amount of bound iron. Thus, the oxidative degradation of CP-type MGs is a process not involving the bulk of MGs, but rather it proceeds from the solvent-exposed outer parts to the interior. Copyright (c) 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  20. Brightness of melanin-based plumage coloration is a cue to oxidative stress in Himalayan Black Bulbuls (Hypsipete leucocephalus nigerrimus)

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Hsin?Yi Hung; Shou?Hsien Li

    2015-01-01

    Background: Melanin?based coloration is often found to be associated with variations in physiological and behavio?ral traits that are essential in avian communication.However,the function of melanin?based traits to their bearers has been investigated less than that of carotenoid?based ones.It is commonly believed that expression of melanin?based pigmentation is genetically controlled.However,whether it could be modulated by physical condition has remained controversial.In this study,we demonstrate that the level of melanin?based plumage pigmentation could be nega?tively correlated with an individual’s oxidative stress level.Methods: In this study,we used two groups of Black Bulbuls(Hypsipetes leucocephalus nigerrimus) obtained from a pet?shop in 2010 and 2011 to examine the correlation between the melanin?based plumage coloration and the ratio of lymphocytes to heterocytes,which is an indicator of the oxidative stress experienced by an individual.Results: We found a negative correlation between oxidative stress levels and expression of melanin?based pigmen?tation on the breast and scapular feathers,but the correlation only appeared in the 2011 group,individuals of which had higher oxidative stress level and brighter plumage(i.e.more melanins) than those of the 2010 group.Conclusions: Our data suggest that melanin?based plumage could reflect an individual’s physical condition in certain situations.Therefore,melanin?based plumage coloration could have a function in Himalayan Black Bulbuls’ communication.

  1. In vivo isolation of the effects of melanin from underlying hemodynamics across skin types using spatial frequency domain spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saager, Rolf B.; Sharif, Ata; Kelly, Kristen M.; Durkin, Anthony J.

    2016-05-01

    Skin is a highly structured tissue, raising concerns as to whether skin pigmentation due to epidermal melanin may confound accurate measurements of underlying hemodynamics. Using both venous and arterial cuff occlusions as a means of inducing differential hemodynamic perturbations, we present analyses of spectra limited to the visible or near-infrared regime, in addition to a layered model approach. The influence of melanin, spanning Fitzpatrick skin types I to V, on underlying estimations of hemodynamics in skin as interpreted by these spectral regions are assessed. The layered model provides minimal cross-talk between melanin and hemodynamics and enables removal of problematic correlations between measured tissue oxygenation estimates and skin phototype.

  2. Pigmented epidermal cyst with dense collection of melanin: A rare entity - Report of a case with review of the literature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayalakshmy, P S; Subitha, K; Priya, P V; Johnson, Gerald

    2012-05-01

    Epidermal cyst is a very common benign cystic lesion of the skin. It is usual to find ulceration of the lining epithelium, rupture of the cyst wall with chronic inflammation and foreign body giant cell reaction. But, it is very rare to see an epidermal cyst with marked accumulation of melanin pigment. Only a few cases of pigmented epidermal cyst with dense collection of melanin pigment have been published in the literature. Here, we are reporting a case of ruptured epidermal cyst with keratin granuloma formation and showing dense collection of melanin pigment.

  3. Proteomics Core

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Proteomics Core is the central resource for mass spectrometry based proteomics within the NHLBI. The Core staff help collaborators design proteomics experiments in a...

  4. Proteomics Core

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Proteomics Core is the central resource for mass spectrometry based proteomics within the NHLBI. The Core staff help collaborators design proteomics experiments in...

  5. Moving beyond Compliance: Promoting Research-Based Professional Discretion in the Implementation of the Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodard, Rebecca; Kline, Sonia

    2015-01-01

    State- and local-level mandates are currently being implemented to ensure strict compliance to the new national Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts (CCSS for ELA) and related assessments. These standards provide many potential opportunities to improve literacy education nationally and locally. However, the CCSS for ELA will…

  6. Morpho-histology of head kidney of female catfish Heteropneustes fossilis: seasonal variations in melano-macrophage centers, melanin contents and effects of lipopolysaccharide and dexamethasone on melanins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Ravi; Joy, K P; Singh, S M

    2016-10-01

    In the catfish Heteropneustes fossilis, the anterior kidney is a hemopoietic tissue which surrounds the adrenal homologues, interrenal (IR) and chromaffin tissues corresponding to the adrenal cortical and adrenal medulla of higher mammals. The IR tissue is arranged in cell cords around the posterior cardinal vein (PCV) and its tributaries and secretes corticosteroids. The chromaffin tissue is scattered singly or in nests of one or more cells around the epithelial lining of the PCV or blood capillaries within the IR tissue. They are ferric ferricyanide-positive. Leukemia-inhibitory factor (LIF)-like reactivity was noticed in the lining of the epithelium of the IR cell cords and around the wall of the PCV and blood capillaries. No staining was observed in the hemopoietic cells. IL-1β- and TNF-α-like immunoreactivity was seen in certain cells in the hemopoietic tissue but not in the IR region. Macrophages were identified with mammalian macrophage-specific MAC387 antibodies and are present in the hemopoietic mass but not in the IR tissue. Pigments accumulate in the hemopoietic mass as melano-macrophage centers (MMCs) and are PAS-, Schmorl's- and Perls'-positive. The pigments contain melanin (black), hemosiderin (blue) and lipofuscin/ceroid (oxidized lipid, yellowish tan), as evident from the Perls' reaction. The MMCs were TUNEL-positive as evident from FITC fluorescence, indicating their apoptotic nature. The MMCs showed significant seasonal variation with their density increasing to the peak in the postspawning phase. Melanins were characterized spectrophotometrically for the first time in fish anterior kidney. The predominant form is pheomelanin (PM), followed by eumelanin (EM) and alkali-soluble melanin (ASM). Melanins showed significant seasonal variations with the level low in the resting phase and increasing to the peak in the postspawning phase. Under in vitro conditions, lipopolysaccharide (10 µg/mL) treatment increased significantly the levels of PM and EM

  7. A thioredoxin of Sinorhizobium meliloti CE52G is required for melanin production and symbiotic nitrogen fixation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro-Sowinski, Susana; Matan, Ofra; Bonafede, Paula; Okon, Yaacov

    2007-08-01

    A miniTn5-induced mutant of a melanin-producing strain of Sinorhizobium meliloti (CE52G) that does not produce melanin was mapped to a gene identified as a probable thioredoxin gene. It was proved that the thiol-reducing activity of the mutant was affected. Addition to the growth medium of substrates that induce the production of melanin (L-tyrosine, guaiacol, orcinol) increased the thioredoxin-like (trxL) mRNA level in the wild-type strain. The mutant strain was affected in the response to paraquat-induced oxidative stress, symbiotic nitrogen fixation, and both laccase and tyrosinase activities. The importance of thioredoxin in melanin production in bacteria, through the regulation of laccase or tyrosinase activities, or both, by the redox state of structural or catalytic SH groups, is discussed.

  8. Compositional changes of human hair melanin resulting from bleach treatment investigated by nanoscale secondary ion mass spectrometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kojima, Toru; Yamada, Hiromi; Isobe, Mitsuru; Yamamoto, Toshihiko; Takeuchi, Miyuki; Aoki, Dan; Matsushita, Yasuyuki; Fukushima, Kazuhiko

    2014-11-01

    It is important to understand the influence of bleach treatment on human hair because it is one of the most important chemical treatments in hair cosmetic processes. A comparison of the elemental composition of melanin between virgin hair and bleached hair would provide important information about the structural changes of melanin. To investigate the elemental composition of melanin granules in virgin black hair and bleached hair, these hair cross-sections are analyzed by using a nanoscale secondary ion mass spectrometry (NanoSIMS). The virgin black hair and bleached hair samples were embedded in resin and smooth hair cross-sections were obtained using an ultramicrotome. NanoSIMS measurements were performed using a Cs(+) primary ion beam to detect negative secondary ions. More intensive (16) O(-) ions were detected from the melanin granules of bleached hair than from those of virgin black hair in NanoSIMS (16) O(-) ion image. In addition, it was indicated that (16) O(-) ion intensity and (16) O(-) /(12) C(14) N(-) ion intensity ratio of melanin granules in bleached hair were higher than those in virgin black hair. Nanoscale secondary ion mass spectrometry analysis of the cross-sections of virgin black hair and bleached hair indicated that the oxygen content in melanin granules was increased by bleach treatment. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. [THE INFLUENCE OF MELANIN ON THE GASTRIC MUCOSA AND HYPOTHALAMIC-PITUITARY-ADRENOCORTICAL AXIS UNDER ACUTE STRESS CONDITIONS].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golyshkin, D V; Falalyeyeva, T M; Neporada, K S; Beregova, T V

    2015-01-01

    We studied the influence of melanin from yeast-like fungi Nadsoniella nigra strain X1 on the changes of the levels of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) and cortisol in blood serum of rats, adrenal glands weight ratio and lesions of the gastric mucosa (GM) caused by neuromuscular tension by Selye. Melanin administration restored functioning of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis that was evident by an increase of ACTH concentration by 42% and a decrease of cortisol concentration by 19% compared to the rats injected with water (group 2). In rats treated with melanin, the adrenal glands weight ratio, didn't differ from intact control group of the rats. Melanin decreased ulcers area by 64% and reduced the content of free hydroxyproline by 29%, the free fucose by 16% and the free hexuronic acids by 24% in the GM compared to the group 2 of the rats. It is established that the mechanism of melanin stress-protective properties are based on its regulation of the glucocorticoids secretion and prevention of GM collagen and extracellular matrix substances depolymerization. Melanin possesses gastroprotective properties and is a perspective agent for preventing and treatment of consequences of the stress influence on the organism.

  10. Compton scattering by internal shields based on melanin-containing mushrooms provides protection of gastrointestinal tract from ionizing radiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Revskaya, Ekaterina; Chu, Peter; Howell, Robertha C; Schweitzer, Andrew D; Bryan, Ruth A; Harris, Matthew; Gerfen, Gary; Jiang, Zewei; Jandl, Thomas; Kim, Kami; Ting, Li-Min; Sellers, Rani S; Dadachova, Ekaterina; Casadevall, Arturo

    2012-11-01

    There is a need for radioprotectors that protect normal tissues from ionizing radiation in patients receiving high doses of radiation and during nuclear emergencies. We investigated the possibility of creating an efficient oral radioprotector based on the natural pigment melanin that would act as an internal shield and protect the tissues via Compton scattering followed by free radical scavenging. CD-1 mice were fed melanin-containing black edible mushrooms Auricularia auricila-judae before 9 Gy total body irradiation. The location of the mushrooms in the body before irradiation was determined by in vivo fluorescent imaging. Black mushrooms protected 80% of mice from the lethal dose, while control mice or those given melanin-devoid mushrooms died from gastrointestinal syndrome. The crypts of mice given black mushrooms showed less apoptosis and more cell division than those in control mice, and their white blood cell and platelet counts were restored at 45 days to preradiation levels. The role of melanin in radioprotection was proven by the fact that mice given white mushrooms supplemented with melanin survived at the same rate as mice given black mushrooms. The ability of melanin-containing mushrooms to provide remarkable protection against radiation suggests that they could be developed into oral radioprotectors.

  11. Melanin- and carotenoid-dependent signals of great tits (Parus major) relate differently to metal pollution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dauwe, Tom; Eens, Marcel

    2008-10-01

    Due to their high phenotypic plasticity, the expression of secondary sexual characteristics is particularly sensitive to stress. Here, we investigated the expression of two conspicuous visual signals in great tits (Parus major) in a metal pollution gradient. In three study sites with marked differences in metal contamination (mainly lead, cadmium, copper and zinc), we compared melanin and carotenoid colouration of great tits. While carotenoid colouration (yellow breast) was negatively related to metal pollution, the size of a melanin trait (breast stripe) was larger in the most polluted sites. Environmental pollutants not only affect the expression of conspicuous signals but may even enhance, directly or indirectly, a signal of male quality such as breast stripe. Our results also support the multiple messages hypothesis predicting that different signals highlight different aspects of geno- and phenotypic condition of the bearer.

  12. [The magnetic susceptibility of the melanin in the eyes of representatives of different vertebrate classes].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zagal'skaia, E O

    1995-01-01

    The magnetoperceptivity (Chi) and element composition of eye pigment epitelium (EPE) melanin in vertebrate animals were measured. The minimal values of EPE Chi were found in winter-sleeping and anabiotic animals (Ursus arctos, Rana temporaria). The magnetoperception was high in migrating animals (Oncorhynchus keta, 0. gorbuscha, Anas crecca) and in wild gray rats as well, EPE magnetoperceptivity in albino rats wasn't practicaly established. In the majority of cases the quantity of magnetoperceptivity correlates with per-cent content of iron. The evident correlation between melanin magnet properties and the life strategy of the investigated animals allows to propose the participance of eye pigment epithelium in orientation and navigation of the animals.

  13. Melanin- and carotenoid-dependent signals of great tits ( Parus major) relate differently to metal pollution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dauwe, Tom; Eens, Marcel

    2008-10-01

    Due to their high phenotypic plasticity, the expression of secondary sexual characteristics is particularly sensitive to stress. Here, we investigated the expression of two conspicuous visual signals in great tits ( Parus major) in a metal pollution gradient. In three study sites with marked differences in metal contamination (mainly lead, cadmium, copper and zinc), we compared melanin and carotenoid colouration of great tits. While carotenoid colouration (yellow breast) was negatively related to metal pollution, the size of a melanin trait (breast stripe) was larger in the most polluted sites. Environmental pollutants not only affect the expression of conspicuous signals but may even enhance, directly or indirectly, a signal of male quality such as breast stripe. Our results also support the multiple messages hypothesis predicting that different signals highlight different aspects of geno- and phenotypic condition of the bearer.

  14. Photochemistry. Chemiexcitation of melanin derivatives induces DNA photoproducts long after UV exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Premi, Sanjay; Wallisch, Silvia; Mano, Camila M; Weiner, Adam B; Bacchiocchi, Antonella; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Bechara, Etelvino J H; Halaban, Ruth; Douki, Thierry; Brash, Douglas E

    2015-02-20

    Mutations in sunlight-induced melanoma arise from cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers (CPDs), DNA photoproducts that are typically created picoseconds after an ultraviolet (UV) photon is absorbed at thymine or cytosine. We found that in melanocytes, CPDs are generated for >3 hours after exposure to UVA, a major component of the radiation in sunlight and in tanning beds. These "dark CPDs" constitute the majority of CPDs and include the cytosine-containing CPDs that initiate UV-signature C→T mutations. Dark CPDs arise when UV-induced reactive oxygen and nitrogen species combine to excite an electron in fragments of the pigment melanin. This creates a quantum triplet state that has the energy of a UV photon but induces CPDs by energy transfer to DNA in a radiation-independent manner. Melanin may thus be carcinogenic as well as protective against cancer. These findings also validate the long-standing suggestion that chemically generated excited electronic states are relevant to mammalian biology.

  15. Two-photon excited fluorescence spectroscopy and imaging of melanin in vitro and in vivo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krasieva, Tatiana B.; Liu, Feng; Sun, Chung-Ho; Kong, Yu; Balu, Mihaela; Meyskens, Frank L.; Tromberg, Bruce J.

    2012-03-01

    The ability to detect early melanoma non-invasively would improve clinical outcome and reduce mortality. Recent advances in two-photon excited fluorescence (TPEF) in vivo microscopy offer a powerful tool in early malignant melanoma diagnostics. The goal of this work was to develop a TPEF optical index for measuring relative concentrations of eumelanin and pheomelanin since ex vivo studies show that changes in this ratio have been associated with malignant transformation. We acquired TPEF emission spectra (λex=1000 nm) of melanin from several specimens, including human hair, malignant melanoma cell lines, and normal melanocytes and keratinocytes in different skin layers (epidermis, papillary dermis) in five healthy volunteers in vivo. We found that the pheomelanin emission peaks at around 620 nm and is blue-shifted from the eumelanin with broad maximum at 640-680nm. We defined "optical melanin index" (OMI) as a ratio of fluorescence signal intensities measured at 645 nm and 615nm. The measured OMI for a melanoma cell line MNT-1 was 1.6+/-0.2. The MNT-46 and MNT-62 lines (Mc1R gene knockdown) showed an anticipated change in melanins production ratio and had OMI of 0.55+/-0.05 and 0.17+/-0.02, respectively, which strongly correlated with HPLC data obtained for these lines. Average OMI measured for basal cells layers (melanocytes and keratinocytes) in normal human skin type I, II-III (not tanned and tanned) in vivo was 0.5, 1.05 and 1.16 respectively. We could not dependably detect the presence of pheomelanin in highly pigmented skin type V-VI. These data suggest that a non-invasive TPEF index could potentially be used for rapid melanin ratio characterization both in vitro and in vivo, including pigmented lesions.

  16. Rapid and accurate estimation of blood saturation, melanin content, and epidermis thickness from spectral diffuse reflectance.

    OpenAIRE

    2010-01-01

    We present a method to determine chromophore concentrations, blood saturation, and epidermal thickness of human skin from diffuse reflectance spectra. Human skin was approximated as a plane-parallel slab of variable thickness supported by a semi-infinite layer corresponding to the epidermis and dermis, respectively. The absorption coefficient was modeled as a function of melanin content for the epidermis and blood content and oxygen saturation for the dermis. The scattering coefficient and re...

  17. Skin melanin degradation%皮肤黑素降解的研究进展

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    周颖丽; 宋秀祖

    2014-01-01

    The difference in human skin complexion is mainly determined by melanin content,type and distribution (granular or scattered).It is considered that melanin is synthesized in melanocytes firstly,then transported from melanocytes to keratinocytes through a variety of ways,degraded in keratinocytes,and finally passes out of the body.Although there have been many studies on the production and transport of melanin,little is known about the degradation process of melanin in keratinocytes.Autophagy is likely to play an important role in this process.%人类皮肤颜色的差异主要由黑素在皮肤中的含量、种类及其分布状态(颗粒状或分散状)来决定.黑素在黑素细胞的黑素小体内被合成后,借助多种途径完成在黑素细胞内以及从黑素细胞到邻近角质形成细胞的转运,最终在角质形成细胞内被降解而排出体外.对于黑素的生成和转运,各方面的研究很多,而对黑素在角质形成细胞内的降解过程研究甚少,机制尚不明了.目前研究认为,自噬在其中发挥着重要的作用.

  18. Conidial Dihydroxynaphthalene Melanin of the Human Pathogenic Fungus Aspergillus fumigatus Interferes with the Host Endocytosis Pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thywißen, Andreas; Heinekamp, Thorsten; Dahse, Hans-Martin; Schmaler-Ripcke, Jeannette; Nietzsche, Sandor; Zipfel, Peter F; Brakhage, Axel A

    2011-01-01

    Aspergillus fumigatus is the most important air-borne fungal pathogen of humans. The interaction of the pathogen with the host's immune system represents a key process to understand pathogenicity. For elimination of invading microorganisms, they need to be efficiently phagocytosed and located in acidified phagolysosomes. However, as shown previously, A. fumigatus is able to manipulate the formation of functional phagolysosomes. Here, we demonstrate that in contrast to pigmentless pksP mutant conidia of A. fumigatus, the gray-green wild-type conidia inhibit the acidification of phagolysosomes of alveolar macrophages, monocyte-derived macrophages, and human neutrophil granulocytes. Therefore, this inhibition is independent of the cell type and applies to the major immune effector cells required for defense against A. fumigatus. Studies with melanin ghosts indicate that the inhibitory effect of wild-type conidia is due to their dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN)-melanin covering the conidia, whereas the hydrophobin RodA rodlet layer plays no role in this process. This is also supported by the observation that pksP conidia still exhibit the RodA hydrophobin layer, as shown by scanning electron microscopy. Mutants defective in different steps of the DHN-melanin biosynthesis showed stronger inhibition than pksP mutant conidia but lower inhibition than wild-type conidia. Moreover, A. fumigatus and A. flavus led to a stronger inhibition of phagolysosomal acidification than A. nidulans and A. terreus. These data indicate that a certain type of DHN-melanin that is different in the various Aspergillus species, is required for maximal inhibition of phagolysosomal acidification. Finally, we identified the vacuolar ATPase (vATPase) as potential target for A. fumigatus based on the finding that addition of bafilomycin which inhibits vATPase, led to complete inhibition of the acidification whereas the fusion of phagosomes containing wild-type conidia and lysosomes was not affected.

  19. Melanocytes and melanin represent a first line of innate immunity against Candida albicans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tapia, Cecilia V; Falconer, Maryanne; Tempio, Fabián; Falcón, Felipe; López, Mercedes; Fuentes, Marisol; Alburquenque, Claudio; Amaro, José; Bucarey, Sergio A; Di Nardo, Anna

    2014-07-01

    Melanocytes are dendritic cells located in the skin and mucosae that synthesize melanin. Some infections induce hypo- or hyperpigmentation, which is associated with the activation of Toll-like receptors (TLRs), especially TLR4. Candida albicans is an opportunist pathogen that can switch between blastoconidia and hyphae forms; the latter is associated with invasion. Our objectives in this study were to ascertain whether C. albicans induces pigmentation in melanocytes and whether this process is dependent on TLR activation, as well as relating this with the antifungal activity of melanin as a first line of innate immunity against fungal infections. Normal human melanocytes were stimulated with C. albicans supernatants or with crude extracts of the blastoconidia or hyphae forms, and pigmentation and TLR2/TLR4 expression were measured. Expression of the melanosomal antigens Melan-A and gp100 was examined for any correlation with increased melanin levels or antifungal activity in melanocyte lysates. Melanosomal antigens were induced earlier than cell pigmentation, and hyphae induced stronger melanization than blastoconidia. Notably, when melanocytes were stimulated with crude extracts of C. albicans, the cell surface expression of TLR2/TLR4 began at 48 h post-stimulation and peaked at 72 h. At this time, blastoconidia induced both TLR2 and TLR4 expression, whereas hyphae only induced TLR4 expression. Taken together, these results suggest that melanocytes play a key role in innate immune responses against C. albicans infections by recognizing pathogenic forms of C. albicans via TLR4, resulting in increased melanin content and inhibition of infection.

  20. Toxicological and melanin synthesis effects of Polygonum multiflorum root extracts on zebrafish embryos and human melanocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thanh Thi Hoai Dang

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Polygonum multiflorum (PM has been commmonly used as folk medicine for treatment of various conditions, such as early graying of hair in humans. However, there have been limited studies which have evaluated the toxicological and biological effects of PM in vitro as well as in vivo. In this study, PM root extracts in ethyl acetate (PM-E and in distilled water (PM-W were examined for their effects on the development of teratogenic defects/deaths. Additionally, they were evaluated for their effects on melanin formation in human melanocytes and pigmentation in embryos/larvae of wild type strain AB zebrafish (Danio rerio. Our results showed that PM root extracts at concentrations of 40 mg/L and 105 mg/L induced the development of teratogenic defects, including yolk sac edema (or heart edema, hemovascular defects, necrosis and abnormal trunk in zebrafish embryos at 4 days post fertilization; teratogenic indexes (TIs were 1.43 and 0.63 for ethyl acetate extract and distilled water extract, respectively. Our results also demonstrated that PM-W significantly increased the pigmentation level of embryos/larvae and induced melanin formation in human melanocytes. The amount of melanin in PM-W-exposed embryos/larvae was 2.2-fold and 1.71-fold greater than those in the control embryos/larvae and control melanocytes, respectively. Our study also showed that the increased level of pigmentation in PM-W embryos/larvae or melanin biosynthesis in melanocytes were both regulated by activation of tyrosinase. Conclusively, our study suggests that PM root extracts could be used as potential agents for treatment of early hair graying as well as various other diseases related to loss of pigmentation. However, these PM root extracts may also have some negative effects on embryos; therefore it should be careful when using for women during pregnancy. [Biomed Res Ther 2016; 3(9.000: 808-818

  1. The Protective Role of Melanin Against UV Damage in Human Skin

    OpenAIRE

    Brenner, Michaela; Hearing, Vincent J.

    2008-01-01

    Human skin is repeatedly exposed to ultraviolet radiation (UVR) that influences the function and survival of many cell types and is regarded as the main causative factor in the induction of skin cancer. It has been traditionally believed that skin pigmentation is the most important photoprotective factor, since melanin, besides functioning as a broadband UV absorbent, has antioxidant and radical scavenging properties. Besides, many epidemiological studies have shown a lower incidence for skin...

  2. Arbutin encapsulated micelles improved transdermal delivery and suppression of cellular melanin production

    OpenAIRE

    Liang, Ke; Xu, Keming; Bessarab, Dmitri; Obaje, Jonathan; Xu, Chenjie

    2016-01-01

    Background Hyperpigmentation is a skin disorder characterized by elevated production of melanin. Current treatment approaches mainly rely on the application of skin lightening chemicals, most of which have safety issues. Efficacy of delivery of the active ingredients to the target organ has also been a challenge. Transdermal based drug delivery platform has been shown to improve drug bioavailability, avoiding the hepatic first pass metabolism, decrease gastrointestinal side effects, and event...

  3. Conidial Dihydroxynaphthalene Melanin of the Human Pathogenic Fungus Aspergillus fumigatus Interferes with the Host Endocytosis Pathway

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thywißen, Andreas; Heinekamp, Thorsten; Dahse, Hans-Martin; Schmaler-Ripcke, Jeannette; Nietzsche, Sandor; Zipfel, Peter F.; Brakhage, Axel A.

    2011-01-01

    Aspergillus fumigatus is the most important air-borne fungal pathogen of humans. The interaction of the pathogen with the host's immune system represents a key process to understand pathogenicity. For elimination of invading microorganisms, they need to be efficiently phagocytosed and located in acidified phagolysosomes. However, as shown previously, A. fumigatus is able to manipulate the formation of functional phagolysosomes. Here, we demonstrate that in contrast to pigmentless pksP mutant conidia of A. fumigatus, the gray-green wild-type conidia inhibit the acidification of phagolysosomes of alveolar macrophages, monocyte-derived macrophages, and human neutrophil granulocytes. Therefore, this inhibition is independent of the cell type and applies to the major immune effector cells required for defense against A. fumigatus. Studies with melanin ghosts indicate that the inhibitory effect of wild-type conidia is due to their dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN)-melanin covering the conidia, whereas the hydrophobin RodA rodlet layer plays no role in this process. This is also supported by the observation that pksP conidia still exhibit the RodA hydrophobin layer, as shown by scanning electron microscopy. Mutants defective in different steps of the DHN-melanin biosynthesis showed stronger inhibition than pksP mutant conidia but lower inhibition than wild-type conidia. Moreover, A. fumigatus and A. flavus led to a stronger inhibition of phagolysosomal acidification than A. nidulans and A. terreus. These data indicate that a certain type of DHN-melanin that is different in the various Aspergillus species, is required for maximal inhibition of phagolysosomal acidification. Finally, we identified the vacuolar ATPase (vATPase) as potential target for A. fumigatus based on the finding that addition of bafilomycin which inhibits vATPase, led to complete inhibition of the acidification whereas the fusion of phagosomes containing wild-type conidia and lysosomes was not affected. PMID

  4. Three-photon fluorescence imaging of melanin with a dual-wedge confocal scanning system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mega, Yair; Kerimo, Joseph; Robinson, Joseph; Vakili, Ali; Johnson, Nicolette; DiMarzio, Charles

    2012-03-01

    Confocal microscopy can be used as a practical tool in non-invasive applications in medical diagnostics and evaluation. In particular, it is being used for the early detection of skin cancer to identify pathological cellular components and, potentially, replace conventional biopsies. The detection of melanin and its spatial location and distribution plays a crucial role in the detection and evaluation of skin cancer. Our previous work has shown that the visible emission from melanin is strong and can be easily observed with a near-infrared CW laser using low power. This is due to a unique step-wise, (SW) three-photon excitation of melanin. This paper shows that the same SW, 3-photon fluorescence can also be achieved with an inexpensive, continuous-wave laser using a dual-prism scanning system. This demonstrates that the technology could be integrated into a portable confocal microscope for clinical applications. The results presented here are in agreement with images obtained with the larger and more expensive femtosecond laser system used earlier.

  5. Substantial Effect of Melanin Influencing Factors on Melanogenesis in Muzzle Melanocytes of Differently Colored Hanwoo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Touseef Amna

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available The present study was designed to investigate the effect of α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH, nitric oxide (NO and L-cysteine on melanin production and expression of related genes MC1R, Tyr, Tyrp-1 and Tyrp-2 in muzzle melanocytes of differently colored three native Hanwoo cattle. Muzzle samples were taken from black, brindle and brown Hanwoo and purified melanocytes were cultured with α-MSH, nitric oxide and L-cysteine at 100 nM, 50 µM and 0.07 mg/ml of media respectively. The amounts of total melanin, eumelanin and mRNA expression at Tyr, Tyrp-1, Tyrp-2 and MC1R levels were quantified. α-MSH and nitric oxide significantly increased (p<0.05 the amount of total melanin in black and brindle whereas eumelanin production in brown Hanwoo muzzle melanocytes. On the contrary, L-cysteine greatly (p<0.05 depressed the eumelanin production in black color but increased in brown. Simultaneously, up regulation of Tyr by nitric oxide and α-MSH and down regulation of Tyr, Tyrp-2 and MC1R genes by L-cysteine were observed in muzzle melanocytes of all three phenotypes. The results of this study revealed nitric oxide and α-MSH contribute hyper-pigmentation by enhancing eumelanogenesis whereas L-cysteine contributes to pheomelanin production in different colored Hanwoo muzzle melanocytes.

  6. Prenylated flavonoids from Artocarpus altilis: antioxidant activities and inhibitory effects on melanin production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lan, Wen-Chun; Tzeng, Cheng-Wei; Lin, Chun-Ching; Yen, Feng-Lin; Ko, Horng-Huey

    2013-05-01

    Flavonoids, 10-oxoartogomezianone (1), 8-geranyl-3-(hydroxyprenyl)isoetin (2), hydroxyartoflavone A (3), isocycloartobiloxanthone (4), and furanocyclocommunin (5), together with 12 known compounds, were isolated from heartwood and cortex of Artocarpus altilis, and their structures were identified by comparing their spectra with those of similar compounds. To identify natural antioxidants and whitening agents, the ability of these prenylated flavonoids was assessed to scavenge the 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl radical (DPPH), the 2,2'-azino-bis(3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulfonic acid) (ABTS(+·)) radical cation, and the superoxide anion (O2(-·)), and their abilities to inhibit tyrosinase and melanin production. It was found that compounds 3, 4, and artoflavone A (15) had moderate DPPH(·)-scavenging activity, whereas compound 4 exhibited significant ABTS(+·)-scavenging activity, and that norartocarpetin (7) and artogomezianone (8) exhibited moderate ABTS(+·)-scavenging activity, with compounds 2, 7, and artocarpin (6) displaying good superoxide anion-scavenging activity. In addition, compounds 7, 8, cudraflavone A (14), and artonin M (17), inhibited melanin production by strongly suppressing tyrosinase activity. Compound 6 reduced the melanin content without inhibiting tyrosinase activity. These results suggest that flavonoids isolated from A. altilis may be candidate antioxidants and/or skin-whitening agents. However, further investigations are required to determine their mechanisms of action. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Studies on Synthetic and Natural Melanin and Its Affinity for Fe(III Ion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. G. Costa

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available In this work, we measured the metal-binding sites of natural and synthetic dihydroxyindole (DHI melanins and their respective interactions with Fe(III ions. Besides the two acid groups detected for the DHI system: catechol (Cat and quinone-imine (QI, acetate groups were detected in the natural oligomer by potentiometric titrations. At acidic pH values, Fe(III complexation with synthetic melanin was detected in an Fe(OH(CatH2Cat interaction. With an increase of pH, three new interactions occurred: dihydroxide diprotonated catechol, Fe(OH2(CatH2Cat−, dihydroxide monoprotonated catechol, [Fe(OH2(CatHCat]2−, and an interaction resulting from the association of one quinone-imine and a catechol group, [Fe(OH2(Qi−(CatHCat]3−. In the natural melanin system, we detected the same interactions involving catechol and quinone-imine groups but also the metal interacts with acetate group at pH values lower than 4.0. Furthermore, interactions in the synthetic system were also characterized by infrared spectroscopy by using the characteristic vibrations of catechol and quinone-imine groups. Finally, scanning electronic microscopy (SEM and energy-dispersive X-ray (EDS analysis were used to examine the differences in morphology of these two systems in the absence and presence of Fe(III ions. The mole ratio of metal and donor atoms was obtained by the EDS analysis.

  8. ULK1 regulates melanin levels in MNT-1 cells independently of mTORC1.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eyal Kalie

    Full Text Available Melanosomes are lysosome-related organelles that serve as specialized sites of melanin synthesis and storage in melanocytes. The progression of melanosomes through the different stages of their formation requires trafficking of specific proteins and membrane constituents in a sequential manner, which is likely to deploy ubiquitous cellular machinery along with melanocyte-specific proteins. Recent evidence revealed a connection between melanogenesis and the autophagy machinery, suggesting a novel role for members of the latter in melanocytes. Here we focused on ULK1, a key autophagy protein which is negatively regulated by mTORC1, to assess its potential role in melanogenesis in MNT-1 cells. We found that ULK1 depletion causes an increase in melanin levels, suggesting an inhibitory function for this protein in melanogenesis. Furthermore, this increase was accompanied by increased transcription of MITF (microphthalmia-associated transcription factor and tyrosinase and by elevated protein levels of tyrosinase, the rate-limiting factor in melanin biogenesis. We also provide evidence to show that ULK1 function in this context is independent of the canonical ULK1 autophagy partners, ATG13 and FIP200. Furthermore we show that regulation of melanogenesis by ULK1 is independent of mTORC1 inhibition. Our data thus provide intriguing insights regarding the involvement of the key regulatory autophagy machinery in melanogenesis.

  9. Role of core promoter sequences in the mechanism of swarmer cell-specific silencing of gyrB transcription in Caulobacter crescentus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gober James W

    2005-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Each Caulobacter crescentus cell division yields two distinct cell types: a flagellated swarmer cell and a non-motile stalked cell. The swarmer cell is further distinguished from the stalked cell by an inability to reinitiate DNA replication, by the physical properties of its nucleoid, and its discrete program of gene expression. Specifically, with regard to the latter feature, many of the genes involved in DNA replication are not transcribed in swarmer cells. Results We show that for one of these genes involved in DNA replication, gyrB, its pattern of temporal expression depends upon an 80 base pair promoter region with strong resemblance to the Caulobacter crescentus σ73 consensus promoter sequence; regulation does not appear to be affected by the general strength of the promoter activity, as mutations that increased its conformity with the consensus did not affect its cell-cycle expression pattern. Transcription from the gyrB promoter in vitro required only the presence of the σ73 RNA polymerase (from E. coli and the requisite nucleoside triphosphates, although a distinct binding activity, present in crude whole-cell extracts, formed a complex gyrB promoter DNA. We also assayed the effect on gyrB expression in strains containing mutations in either smc or dps, two genes encoding proteins that condense DNA. However we found there was no change in the temporal pattern of gyrB transcription in strains containing deletions in either of these genes. Conclusion These experiments demonstrate that gyrB transcription does not require any auxiliary factors, suggesting that temporal regulation is not dependent upon an activator protein. Swarmer-specific silencing may not be attributable to the observed physical difference in the swarmer cell nucleoid, since mutations in either smc or dps, two genes encoding proteins that condense DNA, did not alter the temporal pattern of gyrB transcription in strains containing deletions in either

  10. Ice cores

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Svensson, Anders

    2014-01-01

    Ice cores from Antarctica, from Greenland, and from a number of smaller glaciers around the world yield a wealth of information on past climates and environments. Ice cores offer unique records on past temperatures, atmospheric composition (including greenhouse gases), volcanism, solar activity......, dustiness, and biomass burning, among others. In Antarctica, ice cores extend back more than 800,000 years before present (Jouzel et al. 2007), whereas. Greenland ice cores cover the last 130,000 years...

  11. Ice cores

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Svensson, Anders

    2014-01-01

    Ice cores from Antarctica, from Greenland, and from a number of smaller glaciers around the world yield a wealth of information on past climates and environments. Ice cores offer unique records on past temperatures, atmospheric composition (including greenhouse gases), volcanism, solar activity......, dustiness, and biomass burning, among others. In Antarctica, ice cores extend back more than 800,000 years before present (Jouzel et al. 2007), whereas. Greenland ice cores cover the last 130,000 years...

  12. Mechanical and photo-fragmentation processes for nanonization of melanin to improve its efficacy in protecting cells from reactive oxygen species stress

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Yi-Cheng [Graduate Institute of Photonics and Optoelectronics, and Department of Electrical Engineering, National Taiwan University, Taipei 10617, Taiwan (China); Institute of Atomic and Molecular Sciences, Academia Sinica, Taipei 10617, Taiwan (China); Chen, Sih-Min [Graduate Institute of Biophysics, National Central University, Jhongli 32001, Taiwan (China); Liu, Jhong-Han; Hsu, Hsiang-Wei [Department of Physics, National Central University, Jhongli 32001, Taiwan (China); Lin, Hoang-Yan [Graduate Institute of Photonics and Optoelectronics, and Department of Electrical Engineering, National Taiwan University, Taipei 10617, Taiwan (China); Chen, Szu-yuan, E-mail: sychen@ltl.iams.sinica.edu.tw [Institute of Atomic and Molecular Sciences, Academia Sinica, Taipei 10617, Taiwan (China); Graduate Institute of Biophysics, National Central University, Jhongli 32001, Taiwan (China); Department of Physics, National Central University, Jhongli 32001, Taiwan (China)

    2015-02-14

    It has been well established ex vivo that melanin has the ability of scavenging free radicals and reactive oxygen species (ROS), besides other functions. Therefore, we propose to utilize nanonized melanin as medication against acute oxidative stress. For this purpose, we developed and characterized two techniques based on mechanical stir and photo-fragmentation using femtosecond laser pulses, respectively, for disintegration of suspended melanin powder to produce nanometer-sized and water-dispersible melanin. This resolves a major obstacle in the medical and industrial applications of melanin. The viabilities of cultured retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells exposed to exogenous H{sub 2}O{sub 2} stress and treated with various conditions of melanin and irradiation were compared. It was found that melanin could be nanonized very effectively with the techniques, and nanonized melanin exhibited a much stronger effect than unprocessed melanin on raising the viability of cultured RPE cells under acute ROS stress. The effect was even more prominent without simultaneous light irradiation, promising for effective in vivo application to the whole body.

  13. 构建由OSE2修饰hTERT核心启动子在骨肉瘤转录靶向基因治疗前景中的研究%Study of construction hTERT core promoter modified by OSE2 in osteosarcoma transcription target gene therapy

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李立文; 王臻; 苏明权; 马越云; 杨旻; 李哲

    2002-01-01

    Objective Constructing replication defect type virus vector of yeast cytosine deaminase gene expression guided by hTERT core promoter modified by OSE2 tandem replicator.Methods Multimer of OSE2 was designed and cloned into the upstream site of hTERT core promoter,then confirmed by sequencing.Shuttle plasmids were constructed using modified hTERT promoter and Fcy1 and cotransfected HEK 293 cells.Recombination yields replication defect type adenovirus.Result HEK 293 cells cotransfected by shuttle plasmid and assisted plasmid appeared typical cytopathic effect 7~ 10 days later.122bp objective fragment was confirmed by PCR evaluation.Conclusion We successfully constructed the replication defective adenovirus of Fcy1 gene expression guided by hTERT core promoter modified by 3 or 6 copys OSE2.

  14. Adaptive melanin response of the soil fungus Aspergillus niger to UV radiation stress at "Evolution Canyon", Mount Carmel, Israel.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natarajan Singaravelan

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Adaptation is an evolutionary process in which traits in a population are tailored by natural selection to better meet the challenges presented by the local environment. The major discussion relating to natural selection concerns the portraying of the cause and effect relationship between a presumably adaptive trait and selection agents generating it. Therefore, it is necessary to identify trait(s that evolve in direct response to selection, enhancing the organism's fitness. "Evolution Canyon" (EC in Israel mirrors a microcosmic evolutionary system across life and is ideal to study natural selection and local adaptation under sharply, microclimatically divergent environments. The south-facing, tropical, sunny and xeric "African" slope (AS receives 200%-800% higher solar radiation than the north-facing, temperate, shady and mesic "European" slope (ES, 200 meters apart. Thus, solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR is a major selection agent in EC influencing the organism-environment interaction. Melanin is a trait postulated to have evolved for UV-screening in microorganisms. Here we investigate the cause and effect relationship between differential UVR on the opposing slopes of EC and the conidial melanin concentration of the filamentous soil fungus Aspergillus niger. We test the working hypothesis that the AS strains exhibit higher melanin content than strains from the ES resulting in higher UV resistance. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We measured conidial melanin concentration of 80 strains from the EC using a spectrophotometer. The results indicated that mean conidial melanin concentration of AS strains were threefold higher than ES strains and the former resisted UVA irradiation better than the latter. Comparisons of melanin in the conidia of A. niger strains from sunny and shady microniches on the predominantly sunny AS and predominantly shady ES indicated that shady conditions on the AS have no influence on the selection on melanin

  15. Effect of apigenin-7-glucoside, genkwanin and naringenin on tyrosinase activity and melanin synthesis in B16F10 melanoma cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nasr Bouzaiene, Nouha; Chaabane, Fadwa; Sassi, Aicha; Chekir-Ghedira, Leila; Ghedira, Kamel

    2016-01-01

    In this study, we have investigated the effects of apigenin-7-glucoside, genkwanin and naringenin, on mouse melanoma B16F10 cell proliferation. Influence of these natural products on percentage cell distribution in cycle phases and melanogenesis was also studied. Cell viability was determined at various periods using the MTT assay, whereas effects of tested compounds on progression through the cell cycle were analyzed by flow cytometry. In addition, amounts of melanin and tyrosinase were measured spectrophotometrically at 475 nm. Besides, the mechanism involved on the death route induced by the tested molecules was evaluated using the bis-benzimide trihydrochloride coloration method (Hoechst 33258). Apigenin-7-glucoside, genkwanin and naringenin exhibited significant anti-proliferative activity against B16F10 melanoma cells after 24 and 48 h of incubation. Furthermore, apigenin-7-glucoside, genkwanin and naringenin provoked an increase of subG0/G1, S and G2/M phase cell proportion with a significant decrease of cell proportion in G0/G1 phases. The results evaluated using Hoechst 33,258, confirm that the percentage of B16F10 cells observed in the sub G0/G1 phase were undergoing apoptosis. Moreover, apigenin-7-glucoside and naringenin revealed an ability to enhance melanogenesis synthesis and tyrosinase activity of B16F10 melanoma cells. Whereas genkwanin induces a decrease of melanin synthesis by inhibiting tyrosinase activity. Our results promote the introduction of genkwanin in cosmetic preparations, as skin whitening agent, whereas apigenin-7-glucoside and naringenin should be introduced into cosmetic products as natural tanning agents. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Hypothalamic kappa opioid receptor mediates both diet‐induced and melanin concentrating hormone–induced liver damage through inflammation and endoplasmic reticulum stress

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imbernon, Monica; Sanchez‐Rebordelo, Estrella; Romero‐Picó, Amparo; Kalló, Imre; Chee, Melissa J.; Porteiro, Begoña; Al‐Massadi, Omar; Contreras, Cristina; Fernø, Johan; Senra, Ana; Gallego, Rosalia; Folgueira, Cintia; Seoane, Luisa M.; van Gestel, Margriet; Adan, Roger A.; Liposits, Zsolt; Dieguez, Carlos; López, Miguel

    2016-01-01

    The opioid system is widely known to modulate the brain reward system and thus affect the behavior of humans and other animals, including feeding. We hypothesized that the hypothalamic opioid system might also control energy metabolism in peripheral tissues. Mice lacking the kappa opioid receptor (κOR) and adenoviral vectors overexpressing or silencing κOR were stereotaxically delivered in the lateral hypothalamic area (LHA) of rats. Vagal denervation was performed to assess its effect on liver metabolism. Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress was inhibited by pharmacological (tauroursodeoxycholic acid) and genetic (overexpression of the chaperone glucose‐regulated protein 78 kDa) approaches. The peripheral effects on lipid metabolism were assessed by histological techniques and western blot. We show that in the LHA κOR directly controls hepatic lipid metabolism through the parasympathetic nervous system, independent of changes in food intake and body weight. κOR colocalizes with melanin concentrating hormone receptor 1 (MCH‐R1) in the LHA, and genetic disruption of κOR reduced melanin concentrating hormone–induced liver steatosis. The functional relevance of these findings was given by the fact that silencing of κOR in the LHA attenuated both methionine choline–deficient, diet‐induced and choline‐deficient, high‐fat diet–induced ER stress, inflammation, steatohepatitis, and fibrosis, whereas overexpression of κOR in this area promoted liver steatosis. Overexpression of glucose‐regulated protein 78 kDa in the liver abolished hypothalamic κOR‐induced steatosis by reducing hepatic ER stress. Conclusions: This study reveals a novel hypothalamic–parasympathetic circuit modulating hepatic function through inflammation and ER stress independent of changes in food intake or body weight; these findings might have implications for the clinical use of opioid receptor antagonists. (Hepatology 2016;64:1086‐1104) PMID:27387967

  17. Inhibitory Effects of Adlay Extract on Melanin Production and Cellular Oxygen Stress in B16F10 Melanoma Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huey-Chun Huang

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to determine the effects of adlay extract on melanin production and the antioxidant characteristics of the extract. The seeds were extracted by the supercritical fluid CO2 extraction (SFE method. The effect of adlay extract on melanin production was evaluated using mushroom tyrosinase activity assay, intracellular tyrosinase activity, antioxidant properties and melanin content. Those assays were performed spectrophotometrically. In addition, the expression of melanogenesis-related proteins was determined by western blotting. The results revealed that the adlay extract suppressed intracellular tyrosinase activity and decreased the amount of melanin in B16F10 cells. The adlay extract decreased the expression of microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF, tyrosinase, tyrosinase related protein-1 (TRP-1 and tyrosinase related protein-2 (TRP-2. The extract also exhibited antioxidant characteristics such as free radical scavenging capacity and reducing power. It effectively decreased intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS levels in B16F10 cells. We concluded that the adlay extract inhibits melanin production by down-regulation of MITF, tyrosinase, TRP-1 and TRP-2. The antioxidant properties of the extract may also contribute to the inhibition of melanogenesis. The adlay extract can therefore be applied as an inhibitor of melanogenesis and could also act as a natural antioxidant in skin care products.

  18. 黑素及其对真菌毒力的影响%Melanin and its contribution to fungal virulence

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张晓利; 吕雪莲; 刘维达

    2008-01-01

    Melanin is a kind of dark-brown or black negative charged materials formed by the oxidative polymerization of phenolic compounds. Melanin synthesis is associated with the virulence of a number of human pathogenic fungi. Melanin can enhance the pathogenicity and survival of infective fungi by protecting them against environmental damage, oxidative injury and antifungal agents. It has been observed that the melanin in Cryptococcus neoformans, Fonsecaea pedrosoi and Sporotrichum schenckii is closely related to the virulence of these fungi. This article presents the possible mechanisms underlying the enhancement of fungal virulence by melanin.%黑素是一类带负电荷的暗褐色或黑色物质,多由酚类化合物氧化聚合而成.黑素的合成与多种人类致病性真菌的毒力相关,它具有保护真菌免受环境因素损伤、抗氧化、抗宿主防御系统和耐受抗真菌药物等作用,从而能够提高菌株在宿主内的存活率,增强对宿主的致病能力.新生隐球菌,裴氏着色芽生菌及申克孢子丝菌等存在的黑素与毒力密切相关,探讨黑素能增强真菌毒力的机制.

  19. The pbrB gene encodes a laccase required for DHN-melanin synthesis in conidia of Talaromyces (Penicillium) marneffei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sapmak, Ariya; Boyce, Kylie J; Andrianopoulos, Alex; Vanittanakom, Nongnuch

    2015-01-01

    Talaromyces marneffei (Basionym: Penicillium marneffei) is a significant opportunistic fungal pathogen in patients infected with human immunodeficiency virus in Southeast Asia. T. marneffei cells have been shown to become melanized in vivo. Melanins are pigment biopolymers which act as a non-specific protectant against various stressors and which play an important role during virulence in fungi. The synthesis of the two most commonly found melanins in fungi, the eumelanin DOPA-melanin and the allomelanin DHN-melanin, requires the action of laccase enzymes. The T. marneffei genome encodes a number of laccases and this study describes the characterization of one of these, pbrB, during growth and development. A strain carrying a PbrB-GFP fusion shows that pbrB is expressed at high levels during asexual development (conidiation) but not in cells growing vegetatively. The pbrB gene is required for the synthesis of DHN-melanin in conidia and when deleted results in brown pigmented conidia, in contrast to the green conidia of the wild type.

  20. Ultrastructural changes produced in Ehrlich ascites carcinoma cells by ultraviolet-visible radiation in the presence of melanins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lea, P.J.; Pawlowski, A.; Persad, S.D.; Menon, I.A.; Haberman, H.F.

    1988-01-01

    Irradiation of Ehrlich ascites carcinoma (EAC) cells in the presence of pheomelanin, i.e., red hair melanin (RHM), has been reported to produce extensive cell lysis. Irradiation in the presence of eumelanin, i.e., black hair melanin (BHM), or irradiation in the absence of either type of melanin did not produce this effect. We observed that RHM particles penetrated the cell membrane without apparent structural damage to the cell or the cell membrane. Irradiation of the cells in the absence of melanin did not produce any changes in the ultrastructure of the cells. Incubation of the cells in the dark in the presence of RHM produced only minor structural, mainly cytoplasmic changes. Irradiation of the cells in the presence of RHM produced extensive ultrastructural changes prior to complete cell lysis; these changes were more severe than the effects of incubation of the cells in the dark in the presence of RHM. When the cells incubated in the dark or irradiated in the presence of latex particles or either one of the eumelanins particles, viz. BHM or synthetic dopa melanin, these particles did not penetrate into the cells or produce any ultrastructural changes. These particles were in fact not even ingested by the cells.

  1. pH-Induced aggregated melanin nanoparticles for photoacoustic signal amplification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ju, Kuk-Youn; Kang, Jeeun; Pyo, Jung; Lim, Joohyun; Chang, Jin Ho; Lee, Jin-Kyu

    2016-07-01

    We present a new melanin-like nanoparticle (MelNP) and its performance evaluation results. This particle is proposed as an exogenous contrast agent for photoacoustic (PA) imaging. Conventional PA contrast agents are based on non-biological materials. In contrast, the MelNPs are organic nanoparticles inspired by natural melanin. Melanin is an endogenous chromophore that has the ability to produce a PA signal in vivo. The developed MelNPs are capable of aggregating with one another under mildly acidic conditions after introducing hydrolysis-susceptible citraconic amide on the surface of bare MelNPs. We ascertained that the physical aggregation of the MelNPs resulted in an increased PA signal strength in the near-infrared window of biological tissue (i.e., 700 nm) without absorption tuning. This phenomenon is likely because of the overlapping thermal fields of the developed MelNPs. The PA signal produced from the developed MelNPs, after exposure to mildly acidic conditions (i.e., pH 6), is 8.1 times stronger than under neutral conditions. This unique characteristic found in this study can be utilized in a practical strategy for highly sensitive in vivo cancer target imaging in response to its acidic microenvironment. This approach to amplify the PA response of MelNPs in clusters could accelerate the use of MelNPs as an alternative to non-biological nanoprobes, so that MelNPs may be applicable in PA imaging and functional PA imaging such as stimuli sensitive, multimodal, and theranostic imaging.We present a new melanin-like nanoparticle (MelNP) and its performance evaluation results. This particle is proposed as an exogenous contrast agent for photoacoustic (PA) imaging. Conventional PA contrast agents are based on non-biological materials. In contrast, the MelNPs are organic nanoparticles inspired by natural melanin. Melanin is an endogenous chromophore that has the ability to produce a PA signal in vivo. The developed MelNPs are capable of aggregating with one

  2. Promoting marketing management level to the development assistance for the core of grid enterprises%提升营销管理水平的探讨

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    罗伦国

    2011-01-01

    New power marketing method to meet the market needs should be established, taking natural resources as premise, based on demand forecasting management, for the purpose of quality services, centered in meet user needs and guide the consumer. Grid enterprises is always ready to offer quality and cheap cleaner energy, is adapted to commercializes operation and legalized management, have layered efficient operating and full - featured, which is the fierce urgency of its core business--the marketing management work.%建立适应市场需要的新型电力营销理念,以可持续发展为前提,以需求预测管理为基础,以用户需求为导向,以优质服务为宗旨,以满足用户需求、引导用户消费为中心,随时随地为用户提供质优、价廉的清洁能源,适应商业化运营、法制化管理,分层高效运作,功能齐备,是电网企业核心业务---营销管理工作的当前之急。

  3. Dopamine-melanin film deposition depends on the used oxidant and buffer solution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernsmann, Falk; Ball, Vincent; Addiego, Frédéric; Ponche, Arnaud; Michel, Marc; Gracio, José Joaquin de Almeida; Toniazzo, Valérie; Ruch, David

    2011-03-15

    The deposition of "polydopamine" films, from an aqueous solution containing dopamine or other catecholamines, constitutes a new and versatile way to functionalize solid-liquid interfaces. Indeed such films can be deposited on almost all kinds of materials. Their deposition kinetics does not depend markedly on the surface chemistry of the substrate, and the films can reach thickness of a few tens of nanometers in a single reaction step. Up to now, even if a lot is known about the oxidation mechanism of dopamine in solution, only little information is available to describe the deposition mechanism on surfaces either by oxidation in solution or by electrodeposition. The deposition kinetics of melanin was only investigated from dopamine solutions using oxygen or ammonium persulfate as an oxidant and from a tris(hydroxymethyl) aminomethane (Tris) containing buffer solutions at pH 8.5. Many other oxidants could be used, and the buffer agent containing a primary amine group may influence the deposition process. Herein we show that the deposition kinetics of melanin from dopamine containing buffers at pH 8.5 can be markedly modified using Cu(2+) instead of O2 as an oxidant: the deposition kinetics remains linear up to thicknesses of more than 70 nm, whereas the film growth stops at 45 ± 5 nm in the presence of 02. In addition, the films prepared from Cu(2+) containing solutions display an absorption spectrum with defined peaks at 320 and 370 nm, which are absent in the spectra of films prepared in oxygenated solutions. The replacement of Tris buffer by phosphate buffer also has a marked effect on the melanin deposition kinetics.

  4. Duration of reappearance of gingival melanin pigmentation after surgical removal - A clinical study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaur Harjit

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: In dentistry, esthetics has a special place. Although gingival melanin pigmentation does not present a medical problem, clinicians are often faced with a challenge of achieving gingival esthetics. Materials and Methods: A method of de-epithelialization of the pigmented gingiva using Kirkland′s gingivectomy knife is described. Twenty patients who were conscious about their gingival melanin pigmentation were selected. The gingiva of the whole of the arch was abraded until the entire visible pigmentation was removed. Clinical observations for intensity of pigmentation were recorded at baseline and then after surgery at monthly intervals over a period of 9 months according to Dummett-Gupta Oral Pigmentation Index scoring criteria proposed by Dummett C. O. in 1964. Results: The mean gingival melanin pigmentation score came down to 0.407 after 9 months as compared to preoperative score, which was 2.24. No repigmentation occurred in fair-complexioned persons. In persons with wheatish complexion, repigmentation was seen in 85.71% of the cases, but scores came down to 0.38 postoperatively as compared to 2.27 preoperatively. In dark complexioned persons, repigmentation occurred in all cases, but the mean scores were 0.93 as compared to 2.40 preoperatively. The difference between preoperative and postoperative mean scores for each segment was put to statistical analysis by applying paired t test and was found to be significant. Conclusion: As this method has shown statistically significant results, it can be used in patients who are conscious of pigmented gingiva and want an esthetically satisfactory color.

  5. Microneedling dilates the follicular infundibulum and increases transfollicular absorption of liposomal sepia melanin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Serrano G

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Gabriel Serrano,1 Patricia Almudéver,2 Juan M Serrano,3 Julio Cortijo,2 Carmen Faus,1 Magda Reyes,1 Inmaculada Expósito,3 Ana Torrens,3 Fernando Millán1 1Clínica Dermatológica Serrano, 2Department of Pharmacology, University of Valencia, 3Research and Development Department, Sesderma Laboratories, Valencia, Spain Abstract: Encapsulation of chemicals in liposomes and microneedling are currently used techniques to enhance the penetration of several substances through skin and hair. In this study, we apply a liposomal melanin–fluorescein compound to an ex vivo model of human skin, using a new electrical microneedling device (Nanopore turbo roller. The product was applied by hand massage (A or with the assistance of the electrical roller for 2 minutes (B. An additional test was performed free of product and with only the E-roller (C. Histological changes and product absorption were evaluated by optical and fluorescent microscopy 60 and 90 minutes after the treatment. Site B showed larger deposits of melanin–fluorescein at superficial and deep levels of hair structures in comparison to site A. Light, epidermal deposits of the melanin–fluorescein complex were also observed. Sites B and C showed a significant widening (47% of the follicular infundibulum which could explain the increased penetration of the formulation. Microneedling also removed the scales and sebum residues in the neighborhood of the infundibulum. Targeting hair follicles with melanin may be useful to dye poorly pigmented hairs, improving laser hair removal. The procedure accelerates the delivery of melanin into hair structures allowing an even absorption, larger pigment deposits, and deeper penetration of the formulation into the hair. Keywords: liposomes, melanin, microneedling, follicular infundibulum, hair removal

  6. New insights into the physicochemical effects of ammonia/peroxide bleaching of hair and Sepia melanins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prem, Padmaja; Dube, Katherine J; Madison, Stephen A; Bartolone, John

    2003-01-01

    Chemically unaltered melanosomes from black hair were isolated using a mild enzymatic procedure reported by Novellino et al. involving sequential treatment of a homogenized hair sample with different protease enzymes. Time-dependent fluorescence studies show, under identical conditions, that the rate of bleaching upon NH3/H2O2 treatment of hair melanosomes is twice that of Sepia melanosomes. The structure and morphology of hair melanosomes are compared to Sepia eumelanin using ESEM and TEM imaging studies. Black hair melanosomes are aggregates of rice-shaped ellipsoidal particles (0.8-1.0 microm in length and 0.2-0.6 microm in width) surrounded by an amorphous material suspected to be made of non-proteinacious materials. Sepia eumelanin aggregates are larger (2-5 microm) particles with a "doughnut" shape comprised of 100-150-nm spherical particles. Time-dependent TEM imaging studies of ammonia-treated (pH 10) hair melanosomes showed an initial breakdown of melanosomal aggregates followed by rupture of the melanosomal membrane, releasing melanin nanoparticles and leaving a ghost membrane behind. After prolonged treatment with aqueous NH3, a total loss of characteristic melanosome morphology was observed leading to an amorphous material. By contrast, Sepia melanosomes under identical conditions of ammonia treatment did not show such changes, probably due to different surface properties and aggregation behavior. Sodium hydroxide or sodium carbonate at identical pH did not show similar changes to ammonia, suggesting that the changes are not merely due to alkaline pH, but, rather, are specific to ammonia. Co-treatment with ammonia and peroxide induced a faster disintegration of the melanosomes, resulting in a complete dissolution and discoloration of melanin in 30 minutes. The data suggest that ammonia helps to release melanin nanoparticles out of melanosomes, making them more susceptible to oxidative attack by H2O2.

  7. Transcription Factor Amr1 Induces Melanin Biosynthesis and Suppresses Virulence in Alternaria brassicicola

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cho, Yangrae; Srivastava, Akhil; Ohm, Robin A.; Lawrence, Christopher B.; Wang, Koon-Hui; Grigoriev, Igor V.; Marahatta, Sharadchandra P.

    2012-05-01

    Alternaria brassicicola is a successful saprophyte and necrotrophic plant pathogen. Several A. brassicicola genes have been characterized as affecting pathogenesis of Brassica species. To study regulatory mechanisms of pathogenesis, we mined 421 genes in silico encoding putative transcription factors in a machine-annotated, draft genome sequence of A. brassicicola. In this study, targeted gene disruption mutants for 117 of the transcription factor genes were produced and screened. Three of these genes were associated with pathogenesis. Disruption mutants of one gene (AbPacC) were nonpathogenic and another gene (AbVf8) caused lesions less than half the diameter of wild-type lesions. Unexpectedly, mutants of the third gene, Amr1, caused lesions with a two-fold larger diameter than the wild type and complementation mutants. Amr1 is a homolog of Cmr1, a transcription factor that regulates melanin biosynthesis in several fungi. We created gene deletion mutants of ?amr1 and characterized their phenotypes. The ?amr1 mutants used pectin as a carbon source more efficiently than the wild type, were melanin-deficient, and more sensitive to UV light and glucanase digestion. The AMR1 protein was localized in the nuclei of hyphae and in highly melanized conidia during the late stage of plant pathogenesis. RNA-seq analysis revealed that three genes in the melanin biosynthesis pathway, along with the deleted Amr1 gene, were expressed at low levels in the mutants. In contrast, many hydrolytic enzyme-coding genes were expressed at higher levels in the mutants than in the wild type during pathogenesis. The results of this study suggested that a gene important for survival in nature negatively affected virulence, probably by a less efficient use of plant cell-wall materials. We speculate that the functions of the Amr1 gene are important to the success of A. brassicicola as a competitive saprophyte and plant parasite.

  8. Duration of reappearance of gingival melanin pigmentation after surgical removal — A clinical study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaur, Harjit; Jain, Sanjeev; Sharma, Roshan Lal

    2010-01-01

    Background: In dentistry, esthetics has a special place. Although gingival melanin pigmentation does not present a medical problem, clinicians are often faced with a challenge of achieving gingival esthetics. Materials and Methods: A method of de-epithelialization of the pigmented gingiva using Kirkland’s gingivectomy knife is described. Twenty patients who were conscious about their gingival melanin pigmentation were selected. The gingiva of the whole of the arch was abraded until the entire visible pigmentation was removed. Clinical observations for intensity of pigmentation were recorded at baseline and then after surgery at monthly intervals over a period of 9 months according to Dummett-Gupta Oral Pigmentation Index scoring criteria proposed by Dummett C. O. in 1964. Results: The mean gingival melanin pigmentation score came down to 0.407 after 9 months as compared to preoperative score, which was 2.24. No repigmentation occurred in fair-complexioned persons. In persons with wheatish complexion, repigmentation was seen in 85.71% of the cases, but scores came down to 0.38 postoperatively as compared to 2.27 preoperatively. In dark-complexioned persons, repigmentation occurred in all cases, but the mean scores were 0.93 as compared to 2.40 preoperatively. The difference between preoperative and postoperative mean scores for each segment was put to statistical analysis by applying paired t test and was found to be significant. Conclusion: As this method has shown statistically significant results, it can be used in patients who are conscious of pigmented gingiva and want an esthetically satisfactory color. PMID:21691546

  9. 基于“微笑曲线”理论下提升民营企业核心竞争力的研究%Study on Core Competence Promotion of Private Enterprises Based on"Smiling Curve Theory"

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    陈修齐

    2011-01-01

    After international financial crisis,private enterprises in China face unprecedented opportunities and challenges.How to promote core competence is crucial to sustainable development of our private enterprises.Based on "Smiling Curve Theory",this article not only analyzes the status and action of our private enterprises in national economy and social develop-ment,but also problems and difficulties they are facing.Meanwhile,this article expounds the necessity of transferring their development to the two ends of "Smiling Curve" in global industry chain,putting forward specific strategies and measures of promoting core competence of our private enterprises based on that.%国际金融危机以来,我国民营企业面临着前所未有的机遇与挑战,提升核心竞争力是我国民营企业未来可持续发展的关键。本文基于"微笑曲线"理论分析了我国民营企业在国民经济和社会发展中的重要作用及面临的问题和困境,提出向全球产业链"微笑曲线"两端转移发展的必要性以及在此基础上提升我国民营企业核心竞争力的具体对策和措施。

  10. Comparison of the effectiveness between 2% and 4% nicotinamide gel in reducing melanin index

    OpenAIRE

    Lisa Murtisari, Lisa Murtisari

    2015-01-01

    Background: Nicotinamide is a safe agent inhibiting melanosome transfer in vitro therefore it can reduce skin pigmentation. Two percent nicotinamide cream combined with sunscreen as a lightening agent in-creases skin lightness in vivo. Measurement of skin colour changes can be performed by mexameter to measure melanin index (MI).Objective: This study was aimed to compare the effectiveness of 2% and 4% nicotinamide gel as a lightening agent in reducing MI.Materials and Methods: This study was ...

  11. Comparison of the effectiveness between 2% and 4% nicotinamide gel in reducing melanin index

    OpenAIRE

    Lisa Murtisari, Lisa Murtisari

    2015-01-01

    Background: Nicotinamide is a safe agent inhibiting melanosome transfer in vitro therefore it can reduce skin pigmentation. Two percent nicotinamide cream combined with sunscreen as a lightening agent in-creases skin lightness in vivo. Measurement of skin colour changes can be performed by mexameter to measure melanin index (MI).Objective: This study was aimed to compare the effectiveness of 2% and 4% nicotinamide gel as a lightening agent in reducing MI.Materials and Methods: This study was ...

  12. Melanin synthesis is associated with changes in hyphopodial turgor, permeability, and wall rigidity in gaeumannomyces graminis var. graminis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Money, N P; Caesar-TonThat, T C; Frederick, B; Henson, J M

    1998-01-01

    Mycelia of Gaeumannomyces graminis var. graminis form large cells called hyphopodia with deeply lobed, melanized walls. Like appressoria produced by other pathogens, hyphopodia develop on hydrophobic surfaces, but it is not clear that hyphopodia function as platforms for host penetration. In appressoria, melanin synthesis is linked to the generation of enormous turgor pressures that provide the necessary force for plant penetration. In the present study, hyphopodial turgor was measured in a wild-type strain of G. graminis var. graminis, a mutant exhibiting constitutive synthesis of melanin (referred to as the dark mutant), and a melanin-deficient strain (thr). These experiments demonstrate that hyphopodia of the wild-type strain generate higher pressures than the dark mutant and that nonmelanized thr hyphopodia generate minuscule internal pressures. Melanization of the wall is also associated with an increase in its rigidity. These data correlate with differences in wall permeability consistent with a recent model for turgor generation by appressoria.

  13. Melanin and blood concentration in a human skin model studied by multiple regression analysis: assessment by Monte Carlo simulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimada, M.; Yamada, Y.; Itoh, M.; Yatagai, T.

    2001-09-01

    Measurement of melanin and blood concentration in human skin is needed in the medical and the cosmetic fields because human skin colour is mainly determined by the colours of melanin and blood. It is difficult to measure these concentrations in human skin because skin has a multi-layered structure and scatters light strongly throughout the visible spectrum. The Monte Carlo simulation currently used for the analysis of skin colour requires long calculation times and knowledge of the specific optical properties of each skin layer. A regression analysis based on the modified Beer-Lambert law is presented as a method of measuring melanin and blood concentration in human skin in a shorter period of time and with fewer calculations. The accuracy of this method is assessed using Monte Carlo simulations.

  14. Using Sepia melanin as a PD model to describe the binding characteristics of neuromelanin - A critical review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeder, Rhiannon L; Double, Kay L; Gerber, Jacobus P

    2015-01-01

    Parkinson's disease is characterised pathologically by a relatively selective death of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra of the brain. The vulnerability of these neurons appears to be linked to the pigment neuromelanin. However, as yet there is limited understanding behind the mechanisms of this disease process. Complications arise due to the difficulty in obtaining appreciable quantities of neuromelanin. Furthermore, an appropriate model for studying neuromelanin has not been identified. To date there has been many studies looking at the binding and chemical characteristics of neuromelanin. However, a range of different synthetic and organic melanins have been used as models and leading to many varied conclusions being drawn. Therefore, the aim of this review is to present Sepia melanin as the most appropriate study model for the binding characteristics of neuromelanin. Considerations included chemical structure, surface characteristics and structural features of both synthetic and organic melanins.

  15. EPR examination of free radical properties of DOPA-melanin complexes with ciprofloxacin, lomefloxacin, norfloxacin and sparfloxacin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beberok, Artur; Buszman, Ewa; Zdybel, Magdalena; Pilawa, Barbara; Wrześniok, Dorota

    2010-09-01

    Paramagnetic complexes of DOPA-melanin with ciprofloxacin, lomefloxacin, norfloxacin and sparfloxacin were studied by EPR spectroscopy. The aim of this work was to determine free radical concentration and properties of these complexes. Free radical concentrations in the studied complexes were ∼1019-1020 spin/g. Relatively lower and similar (5.1-6.6 × 1019 spin/g) free radical concentrations characterized DOPA-melanin complexes with ciprofloxacin, and lomefloxacin. Higher concentrations (0.8-1.2 × 1020 spin/g) were obtained for complexes of norfloxacin and sparfloxacin. Effect of the drug concentration on free radicals in melanin was observed. Strong dipolar spin-spin interactions and slow spin-lattice relaxation processes exist in all of the samples.

  16. 5meCpG epigenetic marks neighboring a primate-conserved core promoter short tandem repeat indicate X-chromosome inactivation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Filipe Brum Machado

    Full Text Available X-chromosome inactivation (XCI is the epigenetic transcriptional silencing of an X-chromosome during the early stages of embryonic development in female eutherian mammals. XCI assures monoallelic expression in each cell and compensation for dosage-sensitive X-linked genes between females (XX and males (XY. DNA methylation at the carbon-5 position of the cytosine pyrimidine ring in the context of a CpG dinucleotide sequence (5meCpG in promoter regions is a key epigenetic marker for transcriptional gene silencing. Using computational analysis, we revealed an extragenic tandem GAAA repeat 230-bp from the landmark CpG island of the human X-linked retinitis pigmentosa 2 RP2 promoter whose 5meCpG status correlates with XCI. We used this RP2 onshore tandem GAAA repeat to develop an allele-specific 5meCpG-based PCR assay that is highly concordant with the human androgen receptor (AR exonic tandem CAG repeat-based standard HUMARA assay in discriminating active (Xa from inactive (Xi X-chromosomes. The RP2 onshore tandem GAAA repeat contains neutral features that are lacking in the AR disease-linked tandem CAG repeat, is highly polymorphic (heterozygosity rates approximately 0.8 and shows minimal variation in the Xa/Xi ratio. The combined informativeness of RP2/AR is approximately 0.97, and this assay excels at determining the 5meCpG status of alleles at the Xp (RP2 and Xq (AR chromosome arms in a single reaction. These findings are relevant and directly translatable to nonhuman primate models of XCI in which the AR CAG-repeat is monomorphic. We conducted the RP2 onshore tandem GAAA repeat assay in the naturally occurring chimeric New World monkey marmoset (Callitrichidae and found it to be informative. The RP2 onshore tandem GAAA repeat will facilitate studies on the variable phenotypic expression of dominant and recessive X-linked diseases, epigenetic changes in twins, the physiology of aging hematopoiesis, the pathogenesis of age-related hematopoietic

  17. High-Throughput Melanin-Binding Affinity and In Silico Methods to Aid in the Prediction of Drug Exposure in Ocular Tissue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reilly, John; Williams, Sarah L; Forster, Cornelia J; Kansara, Viral; End, Peter; Serrano-Wu, Michael H

    2015-12-01

    Drugs possessing the ability to bind to melanin-rich tissue, such as the eye, are linked with higher ocular exposure, and therefore have the potential to affect the efficacy and safety profiles of therapeutics. A high-throughput melanin chromatographic affinity assay has been developed and validated, which has allowed the rapid melanin affinity assessment for a large number of compounds. Melanin affinity of compounds can be quickly assigned as low, medium, or high melanin binders. A high-throughput chromatographic method has been developed and fully validated to assess melanin affinity of pharmaceuticals and has been useful in predicting ocular tissue distribution in vivo studies. The high-throughput experimental approach has also allowed for a specific training set of 263 molecules for a quantitative structure-affinity relationships (QSAR) method to be developed, which has also been shown to be a predictor of ocular tissue exposure. Previous studies have reported the development of in silico QSAR models based on training sets of relatively small and mostly similar compounds; this model covers a broader range of melanin-binding affinities than what has been previously published and identified several physiochemical descriptors to be considered in the design of compounds where melanin-binding modulation is desired.

  18. Protein adsorption on dopamine-melanin films: role of electrostatic interactions inferred from zeta-potential measurements versus chemisorption.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernsmann, Falk; Frisch, Benoît; Ringwald, Christian; Ball, Vincent

    2010-04-01

    We recently showed the possibility to build dopamine-melanin films of controlled thickness by successive immersions of a substrate in alkaline solutions of dopamine [F. Bernsmann, A. Ponche, C. Ringwald, J. Hemmerlé, J. Raya, B. Bechinger, J.-C. Voegel, P. Schaaf, V. Ball, J. Phys. Chem. C 113 (2009) 8234-8242]. In this work the structure and properties of such films are further explored. The zeta-potential of dopamine-melanin films is measured as a function of the total immersion time to build the film. It appears that the film bears a constant zeta-potential of (-39+/-3) mV after 12 immersion steps. These data are used to calculate the surface density of charged groups of the dopamine-melanin films at pH 8.5 that are mostly catechol or quinone imine chemical groups. Furthermore the zeta-potential is used to explain the adsorption of three model proteins (lysozyme, myoglobin, alpha-lactalbumin), which is monitored by quartz crystal microbalance. We come to the conclusion that protein adsorption on dopamine-melanin is not only determined by possible covalent binding between amino groups of the proteins and catechol groups of dopamine-melanin but that electrostatic interactions contribute to protein binding. Part of the adsorbed proteins can be desorbed by sodium dodecylsulfate solutions at the critical micellar concentration. The fraction of weakly bound proteins decreases with their isoelectric point. Additionally the number of available sites for covalent binding of amino groups on melanin grains is quantified.

  19. Transformer core

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mehendale, A.; Hagedoorn, Wouter; Lötters, Joost Conrad

    2010-01-01

    A transformer core includes a stack of a plurality of planar core plates of a magnetically permeable material, which plates each consist of a first and a second sub-part that together enclose at least one opening. The sub-parts can be fitted together via contact faces that are located on either side

  20. Transformer core

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mehendale, A.; Hagedoorn, Wouter; Lötters, Joost Conrad

    2008-01-01

    A transformer core includes a stack of a plurality of planar core plates of a magnetically permeable material, which plates each consist of a first and a second sub-part that together enclose at least one opening. The sub-parts can be fitted together via contact faces that are located on either side

  1. Genome-Wide Mapping Targets of the Metazoan Chromatin Remodeling Factor NURF Reveals Nucleosome Remodeling at Enhancers, Core Promoters and Gene Insulators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    So Yeon Kwon

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available NURF is a conserved higher eukaryotic ISWI-containing chromatin remodeling complex that catalyzes ATP-dependent nucleosome sliding. By sliding nucleosomes, NURF is able to alter chromatin dynamics to control transcription and genome organization. Previous biochemical and genetic analysis of the specificity-subunit of Drosophila NURF (Nurf301/Enhancer of Bithorax (E(bx has defined NURF as a critical regulator of homeotic, heat-shock and steroid-responsive gene transcription. It has been speculated that NURF controls pathway specific transcription by co-operating with sequence-specific transcription factors to remodel chromatin at dedicated enhancers. However, conclusive in vivo demonstration of this is lacking and precise regulatory elements targeted by NURF are poorly defined. To address this, we have generated a comprehensive map of in vivo NURF activity, using MNase-sequencing to determine at base pair resolution NURF target nucleosomes, and ChIP-sequencing to define sites of NURF recruitment. Our data show that, besides anticipated roles at enhancers, NURF interacts physically and functionally with the TRF2/DREF basal transcription factor to organize nucleosomes downstream of active promoters. Moreover, we detect NURF remodeling and recruitment at distal insulator sites, where NURF functionally interacts with and co-localizes with DREF and insulator proteins including CP190 to establish nucleosome-depleted domains. This insulator function of NURF is most apparent at subclasses of insulators that mark the boundaries of chromatin domains, where multiple insulator proteins co-associate. By visualizing the complete repertoire of in vivo NURF chromatin targets, our data provide new insights into how chromatin remodeling can control genome organization and regulatory interactions.

  2. Genome-Wide Mapping Targets of the Metazoan Chromatin Remodeling Factor NURF Reveals Nucleosome Remodeling at Enhancers, Core Promoters and Gene Insulators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    So Yeon Kwon

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available NURF is a conserved higher eukaryotic ISWI-containing chromatin remodeling complex that catalyzes ATP-dependent nucleosome sliding. By sliding nucleosomes, NURF is able to alter chromatin dynamics to control transcription and genome organization. Previous biochemical and genetic analysis of the specificity-subunit of Drosophila NURF (Nurf301/Enhancer of Bithorax (E(bx has defined NURF as a critical regulator of homeotic, heat-shock and steroid-responsive gene transcription. It has been speculated that NURF controls pathway specific transcription by co-operating with sequence-specific transcription factors to remodel chromatin at dedicated enhancers. However, conclusive in vivo demonstration of this is lacking and precise regulatory elements targeted by NURF are poorly defined. To address this, we have generated a comprehensive map of in vivo NURF activity, using MNase-sequencing to determine at base pair resolution NURF target nucleosomes, and ChIP-sequencing to define sites of NURF recruitment. Our data show that, besides anticipated roles at enhancers, NURF interacts physically and functionally with the TRF2/DREF basal transcription factor to organize nucleosomes downstream of active promoters. Moreover, we detect NURF remodeling and recruitment at distal insulator sites, where NURF functionally interacts with and co-localizes with DREF and insulator proteins including CP190 to establish nucleosome-depleted domains. This insulator function of NURF is most apparent at subclasses of insulators that mark the boundaries of chromatin domains, where multiple insulator proteins co-associate. By visualizing the complete repertoire of in vivo NURF chromatin targets, our data provide new insights into how chromatin remodeling can control genome organization and regulatory interactions.

  3. Topical liposome targeting of dyes, melanins, genes, and proteins selectively to hair follicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffman, R M

    1998-01-01

    For therapeutic and cosmetic modification of hair, we have developed a hair-follicle-selective macromolecule and small molecule targeting system with topical application of phosphatidylcholine-based liposomes. Liposome-entrapped melanins, proteins, genes, and small-molecules have been selectively targeted to the hair follicle and hair shafts of mice. Liposomal delivery of these molecules is time dependent. Negligible amounts of delivered molecules enter the dermis, epidermis, or bloodstream thereby demonstrating selective follicle delivery. Naked molecules are trapped in the stratum corneum and are unable to enter the follicle. The potential of the hair-follicle liposome delivery system for therapeutic use for hair disease as well as for cosmesis has been demonstrated in 3-dimensional histoculture of hair-growing skin and mouse in vivo models. Topical liposome selective delivery to hair follicles has demonstrated the ability to color hair with melanin, the delivery of the active lac-Z gene to hair matrix cells and delivery of proteins as well. Liposome-targeting of molecules to hair follicles has also been achieved in human scalp in histoculture. Liposomes thus have high potential in selective hair follicle targeting of large and small molecules, including genes, opening the field of gene therapy and other molecular therapy of the hair process to restore hair growth, physiologically restore or alter hair pigment, and to prevent or accelerate hair loss.

  4. Olanzapine-induced changes in glucose metabolism are independent of the melanin-concentrating hormone system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girault, Elodie M; Toonen, Pim W; Eggels, Leslie; Foppen, Ewout; Ackermans, Mariëtte T; la Fleur, Susanne E; Fliers, Eric; Kalsbeek, Andries

    2013-11-01

    Atypical antipsychotic drugs such as Olanzapine (Ola) induce weight gain and metabolic changes associated with the development of type 2 diabetes. The mechanisms underlying these undesired side-effects are currently unknown. Chagnon et al. showed that the common allele rs7973796 of the prepro-melanin-concentrating hormone (PMCH) gene is associated with a greater body mass index in Ola-treated schizophrenic patients. As PMCH encodes for the orexigenic neuropeptide melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH), it was hypothesized that MCH is involved in Ola-induced metabolic changes. We have recently reported that the intragastric infusion of Ola results in hyperglycaemia and insulin resistance in male rats. In order to test in vivo the possible involvement of the PMCH gene in the pathogenesis of Ola side-effects, we administered Ola intragastrically in wild-type (WT) and PMCH knock-out (KO) rats. Our results show that glucose and corticosterone levels, as well as endogenous glucose production, are elevated by the infusion of Ola in both WT and KO animals. Thus, the lack of MCH does not seem to affect the acute effects of Ola on glucose metabolism. On the other hand, these effects might be obliterated by compensatory changes in other hypothalamic systems. In addition, possible modulatory effects of the MCH KO on the long term effects of Ola, i.e. increased adiposity, body weight gain, have not been investigated yet.

  5. Microneedling dilates the follicular infundibulum and increases transfollicular absorption of liposomal sepia melanin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serrano, Gabriel; Almudéver, Patricia; Serrano, Juan M; Cortijo, Julio; Faus, Carmen; Reyes, Magda; Expósito, Inmaculada; Torrens, Ana; Millán, Fernando

    2015-01-01

    Encapsulation of chemicals in liposomes and microneedling are currently used techniques to enhance the penetration of several substances through skin and hair. In this study, we apply a liposomal melanin–fluorescein compound to an ex vivo model of human skin, using a new electrical microneedling device (Nanopore turbo roller). The product was applied by hand massage (A) or with the assistance of the electrical roller for 2 minutes (B). An additional test was performed free of product and with only the E-roller (C). Histological changes and product absorption were evaluated by optical and fluorescent microscopy 60 and 90 minutes after the treatment. Site B showed larger deposits of melanin–fluorescein at superficial and deep levels of hair structures in comparison to site A. Light, epidermal deposits of the melanin–fluorescein complex were also observed. Sites B and C showed a significant widening (47%) of the follicular infundibulum which could explain the increased penetration of the formulation. Microneedling also removed the scales and sebum residues in the neighborhood of the infundibulum. Targeting hair follicles with melanin may be useful to dye poorly pigmented hairs, improving laser hair removal. The procedure accelerates the delivery of melanin into hair structures allowing an even absorption, larger pigment deposits, and deeper penetration of the formulation into the hair. PMID:26170707

  6. Action of 2,2',4,4'-tetrahydroxybenzophenone in the biosynthesis pathway of melanin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Jimenez, Antonio; Teruel-Puche, Jose Antonio; Garcia-Ruiz, Pedro Antonio; Berna, Jose; Rodríguez-López, Jose Neptuno; Tudela, Jose; Garcia-Canovas, Francisco

    2017-05-01

    2,2',4,4'-tetrahydroxybenzophenone (Uvinul D50), a sunscreen used in cosmetics, has two effects in the melanin biosynthesis pathway. On the one hand, it acts a weak inhibitor of tyrosinase and on the other, it accelerates the conversion of dopachrome to melanin. Uvinul D50 was seen to behave as a weak competitive inhibitor: apparent constant inhibition=2.02±0.09mM and IC50=3.82±0.39mM established in this work. These values are higher than those in the bibliography, which tend to be undersetimated. This discrepancy could be explained by the reaction of Uvinul D50 with the dopachrome produced from l-tyrosine or l-dopa, which would interfere in the measurement. Based on studies of its docking to tyrosinase, it seems that Uvinul D50 interacts with the active site of the enzyme (oxytyrosinase) both in its protonated and deprotonated forms (pKa=7). However, it cannot be hydroxylated, meaning that it acts as a weak inhibitor, not as an alternative substrate, despite its resorcinol structure. Uvinul D50 can be used as sunscreen, in low concentrations without significant adverse effects on melanogenesis.

  7. Effects of melanin-induced free radicals on the isolated rat peritoneal mast cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ranadive, N.S.; Shirwadkar, S.; Persad, S.; Menon, I.A.

    1986-03-01

    Pheomelanin from human red hair (RHM) produces considerably more cellular damage in Ehrlich ascites carcinoma cells when subjected to radiations of wavelength 320-700 nm than eumelanin from black hair (BHM). Irradiation of RHM generated large amounts of superoxide while BHM did not produce detectable amounts of superoxide. The present investigations describe the effects of irradiation of mast cells in the presence of various natural and synthetic melanins. Irradiation of mast cells in the presence of RHM and red hair melanoprotein released large amounts of histamine while BHM and synthetic melanins prepared from dopa, cysteinyldopa, or a mixture of dopa and cysteinyldopa did not release histamine. The release of histamine at lower concentrations of RHM was not accompanied by the release of /sup 51/Cr from chromium-loaded cells, suggesting that this release was of noncytotoxic nature. On the other hand, the release of histamine at higher concentrations of RHM was due to cell lysis since both histamine and cytoplasmic marker /sup 51/Cr were released to the same extent. The release evoked by large concentration RHM was not inhibited by superoxide dismutase or catalase. This suggests that the cell lysis under these conditions was not due to H/sub 2/O/sub 2/ or O-2. The finding that mast cells release histamine when irradiated in the presence of RHM suggests that the immediate and late-phase reactions seen in sunburn may in part be due to the release of mediators from these cells.

  8. Heavy Water as a Probe of the Free Radical Nature and Electrical Conductivity of Melanin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rienecker, Shermiyah B; Mostert, A Bernardus; Schenk, Gerhard; Hanson, Graeme R; Meredith, Paul

    2015-12-01

    Melanins are pigmentary macromolecules found in many locations throughout nature including plants and vertebrate animals. It was recently proposed that the predominant brown-black pigment eumelanin is a mixed ionic-electronic conductor which has led to renewed interest in its basic properties as a model bioelectronic material. This exotic hybrid electrical behavior is strongly dependent upon hydration and is closely related to the free radical content of melanin which is believed to be a mixed population of two species: the semiquinone (SQ) and a carbon-centered radical (CCR). The predominant charge carrier is the proton that is released during the formation of the SQ radical and controlled by a comproportionation equilibrium reaction. In this paper we present a combined solid-state electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR), adsorption, and hydrated conductivity study using D2O as a probe. We make specific predictions as to how the heavy isotope effect, in contrast to H2O, should perturb the comproportionation equilibrium and the related outcome as far as the electrical conductivity is concerned. Our EPR results confirm the proposed two-spin mechanism and clearly demonstrate the power of combining macroscopic measurements with observations from mesoscopic probes for the study of bioelectronic materials.

  9. 4-(Phenylsulfanylbutan-2-One Suppresses Melanin Synthesis and Melanosome Maturation In Vitro and In Vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shing-Yi Sean Wu

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we screened compounds with skin whitening properties and favorable safety profiles from a series of marine related natural products, which were isolated from Formosan soft coral Cladiella australis. Our results indicated that 4-(phenylsulfanylbutan-2-one could successfully inhibit pigment generation processes in mushroom tyrosinase platform assay, probably through the suppression of tyrosinase activity to be a non-competitive inhibitor of tyrosinase. In cell-based viability examinations, it demonstrated low cytotoxicity on melanoma cells and other normal human cells. It exhibited stronger inhibitions of melanin production and tyrosinase activity than arbutin or 1-phenyl-2-thiourea (PTU. Also, we discovered that 4-(phenylsulfanylbutan-2-one reduces the protein expressions of melanin synthesis-related proteins, including the microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF, tyrosinase-related protein-1 (Trp-1, dopachrome tautomerase (DCT, Trp-2, and glycoprotein 100 (GP100. In an in vivo zebrafish model, it presented a remarkable suppression in melanogenesis after 48 h. In summary, our in vitro and in vivo biological assays showed that 4-(phenylsulfanylbutan-2-one possesses anti-melanogenic properties that are significant in medical cosmetology.

  10. Melanin Transfer in Human 3D Skin Equivalents Generated Exclusively from Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karl Gledhill

    Full Text Available The current utility of 3D skin equivalents is limited by the fact that existing models fail to recapitulate the cellular complexity of human skin. They often contain few cell types and no appendages, in part because many cells found in the skin are difficult to isolate from intact tissue and cannot be expanded in culture. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs present an avenue by which we can overcome this issue due to their ability to be differentiated into multiple cell types in the body and their unlimited growth potential. We previously reported generation of the first human 3D skin equivalents from iPSC-derived fibroblasts and iPSC-derived keratinocytes, demonstrating that iPSCs can provide a foundation for modeling a complex human organ such as skin. Here, we have increased the complexity of this model by including additional iPSC-derived melanocytes. Epidermal melanocytes, which are largely responsible for skin pigmentation, represent the second most numerous cell type found in normal human epidermis and as such represent a logical next addition. We report efficient melanin production from iPSC-derived melanocytes and transfer within an entirely iPSC-derived epidermal-melanin unit and generation of the first functional human 3D skin equivalents made from iPSC-derived fibroblasts, keratinocytes and melanocytes.

  11. Effect of norfloxacin and moxifloxacin on melanin synthesis and antioxidant enzymes activity in normal human melanocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beberok, Artur; Wrześniok, Dorota; Otręba, Michał; Miliński, Maciej; Rok, Jakub; Buszman, Ewa

    2015-03-01

    Fluoroquinolone antibiotics provide broad-spectrum coverage for a number of infectious diseases, including respiratory as well as urinary tract infections. One of the important adverse effects of these drugs is phototoxicity which introduces a serious limitation to their use. To gain insight the molecular mechanisms underlying the fluoroquinolones-induced phototoxic side effects, the impact of two fluoroquinolone derivatives with different phototoxic potential, norfloxacin and moxifloxacin, on melanogenesis and antioxidant enzymes activity in normal human melanocytes HEMa-LP was determined. Both drugs induced concentration-dependent loss in melanocytes viability. The value of EC50 for these drugs was found to be 0.5 mM. Norfloxacin and moxifloxacin suppressed melanin biosynthesis; antibiotics were shown to inhibit cellular tyrosinase activity and to reduce melanin content in melanocytes. When comparing the both analyzed fluoroquinolones, it was observed that norfloxacin possesses greater inhibitory effect on tyrosinase activity in melanocytes than moxifloxacin. The extent of oxidative stress in cells was assessed by measuring the activity of antioxidant enzymes: SOD, CAT, and GPx. It was observed that norfloxacin caused higher depletion of antioxidant status in melanocytes when compared with moxifloxacin. The obtained results give a new insight into the mechanisms of fluoroquinolones toxicity directed to pigmented tissues. Moreover, the presented differences in modulation of biochemical processes in melanocytes may be an explanation for various phototoxic activities of the analyzed fluoroquinolone derivatives in vivo.

  12. Singlet molecular oxygen generation by light-activated DHN-melanin of the fungal pathogen Mycosphaerella fijiensis in black Sigatoka disease of bananas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beltrán-García, Miguel J; Prado, Fernanda M; Oliveira, Marilene S; Ortiz-Mendoza, David; Scalfo, Alexsandra C; Pessoa, Adalberto; Medeiros, Marisa H G; White, James F; Di Mascio, Paolo

    2014-01-01

    In pathogenic fungi, melanin contributes to virulence, allowing tissue invasion and inactivation of the plant defence system, but has never been implicated as a factor for host cell death, or as a light-activated phytotoxin. Our research shows that melanin synthesized by the fungal banana pathogen Mycosphaerella fijiensis acts as a virulence factor through the photogeneration of singlet molecular oxygen O2 (1Δg). Using analytical tools, including elemental analysis, ultraviolet/infrared absorption spectrophometry and MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry analysis, we characterized both pigment content in mycelia and secreted to the culture media as 1,8-dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN)-melanin type compound. This is sole melanin-type in M. fijiensis. Isolated melanins irradiated with a Nd:YAG laser at 532 nm produced monomol light emission at 1270 nm, confirming generation of O2 (1Δg), a highly reactive oxygen specie (ROS) that causes cellular death by reacting with all cellular macromolecules. Intermediary polyketides accumulated in culture media by using tricyclazole and pyroquilon (two inhibitors of DHN-melanin synthesis) were identified by ESI-HPLC-MS/MS. Additionally, irradiation at 532 nm of that mixture of compounds and whole melanized mycelium also generated O2 (1Δg). A pigmented-strain generated more O2 (1Δg) than a strain with low melanin content. Banana leaves of cultivar Cavendish, naturally infected with different stages of black Sigatoka disease, were collected from field. Direct staining of the naturally infected leaf tissues showed the presence of melanin that was positively correlated to the disease stage. We also found hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) but we cannot distinguish the source. Our results suggest that O2 (1Δg) photogenerated by DHN-melanin may be involved in the destructive effects of Mycosphaerella fijiensis on banana leaf tissues. Further studies are needed to fully evaluate contributions of melanin-mediated ROS to microbial pathogenesis.

  13. Singlet molecular oxygen generation by light-activated DHN-melanin of the fungal pathogen Mycosphaerella fijiensis in black Sigatoka disease of bananas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel J Beltrán-García

    Full Text Available In pathogenic fungi, melanin contributes to virulence, allowing tissue invasion and inactivation of the plant defence system, but has never been implicated as a factor for host cell death, or as a light-activated phytotoxin. Our research shows that melanin synthesized by the fungal banana pathogen Mycosphaerella fijiensis acts as a virulence factor through the photogeneration of singlet molecular oxygen O2 (1Δg. Using analytical tools, including elemental analysis, ultraviolet/infrared absorption spectrophometry and MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry analysis, we characterized both pigment content in mycelia and secreted to the culture media as 1,8-dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN-melanin type compound. This is sole melanin-type in M. fijiensis. Isolated melanins irradiated with a Nd:YAG laser at 532 nm produced monomol light emission at 1270 nm, confirming generation of O2 (1Δg, a highly reactive oxygen specie (ROS that causes cellular death by reacting with all cellular macromolecules. Intermediary polyketides accumulated in culture media by using tricyclazole and pyroquilon (two inhibitors of DHN-melanin synthesis were identified by ESI-HPLC-MS/MS. Additionally, irradiation at 532 nm of that mixture of compounds and whole melanized mycelium also generated O2 (1Δg. A pigmented-strain generated more O2 (1Δg than a strain with low melanin content. Banana leaves of cultivar Cavendish, naturally infected with different stages of black Sigatoka disease, were collected from field. Direct staining of the naturally infected leaf tissues showed the presence of melanin that was positively correlated to the disease stage. We also found hydrogen peroxide (H2O2 but we cannot distinguish the source. Our results suggest that O2 (1Δg photogenerated by DHN-melanin may be involved in the destructive effects of Mycosphaerella fijiensis on banana leaf tissues. Further studies are needed to fully evaluate contributions of melanin-mediated ROS to microbial pathogenesis.

  14. Central melanin-concentrating hormone influences liver and adipose metabolism via specific hypothalamic nuclei and efferent autonomic/JNK1 pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imbernon, Monica; Beiroa, Daniel; Vázquez, María J; Morgan, Donald A; Veyrat-Durebex, Christelle; Porteiro, Begoña; Díaz-Arteaga, Adenis; Senra, Ana; Busquets, Silvia; Velásquez, Douglas A; Al-Massadi, Omar; Varela, Luis; Gándara, Marina; López-Soriano, Francisco-Javier; Gallego, Rosalía; Seoane, Luisa M; Argiles, Josep M; López, Miguel; Davis, Roger J; Sabio, Guadalupe; Rohner-Jeanrenaud, Françoise; Rahmouni, Kamal; Dieguez, Carlos; Nogueiras, Ruben

    2013-03-01

    Specific neuronal circuits modulate autonomic outflow to liver and white adipose tissue. Melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH)-deficient mice are hypophagic, lean, and do not develop hepatosteatosis when fed a high-fat diet. Herein, we sought to investigate the role of MCH, an orexigenic neuropeptide specifically expressed in the lateral hypothalamic area, on hepatic and adipocyte metabolism. Chronic central administration of MCH and adenoviral vectors increasing MCH signaling were performed in rats and mice. Vagal denervation was performed to assess its effect on liver metabolism. The peripheral effects on lipid metabolism were assessed by real-time polymerase chain reaction and Western blot. We showed that the activation of MCH receptors promotes nonalcoholic fatty liver disease through the parasympathetic nervous system, whereas it increases fat deposition in white adipose tissue via the suppression of sympathetic traffic. These metabolic actions are independent of parallel changes in food intake and energy expenditure. In the liver, MCH triggers lipid accumulation and lipid uptake, with c-Jun N-terminal kinase being an essential player, whereas in adipocytes MCH induces metabolic pathways that promote lipid storage and decreases lipid mobilization. Genetic activation of MCH receptors or infusion of MCH specifically in the lateral hypothalamic area modulated hepatic lipid metabolism, whereas the specific activation of this receptor in the arcuate nucleus affected adipocyte metabolism. Our findings show that central MCH directly controls hepatic and adipocyte metabolism through different pathways. Copyright © 2013 AGA Institute. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Detection of Ca2+-dependent acid phosphatase activity identifies neuronal integrity in damaged rat central nervous system after application of bacterial melanin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tigran R Petrosyan

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The study aims to confirm the neuroregenerative effects of bacterial melanin (BM on central nervous system injury using a special staining method based on the detection of Ca2+-dependent acid phosphatase activity. Twenty-four rats were randomly assigned to undergo either unilateral destruction of sensorimotor cortex (group I; n = 12 or unilateral rubrospinal tract transection at the cervical level (C3–4 (group II; n = 12. In each group, six rats were randomly selected after surgery to undergo intramuscular injection of BM solution (BM subgroup and the remaining six rats were intramuscularly injected with saline (saline subgroup. Neurological testing confirmed that BM accelerated the recovery of motor function in rats from both BM and saline subgroups. Two months after surgery, Ca2+-dependent acid phosphatase activity detection in combination with Chilingarian's calcium adenoside triphosphate method revealed that BM stimulated the sprouting of fibers and dilated the capillaries in the brain and spinal cord. These results suggest that BM can promote the recovery of motor function of rats with central nervous system injury; and detection of Ca2+-dependent acid phosphatase activity is a fast and easy method used to study the regeneration-promoting effects of BM on the injured central nervous system.

  16. Central Melanin-Concentrating Hormone Influences Liver and Adipose Metabolism Via Specific Hypothalamic Nuclei and Efferent Autonomic/JNK1 Pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imbernon, Monica; Beiroa, Daniel; Vázquez, María J.; Morgan, Donald A.; Veyrat–Durebex, Christelle; Porteiro, Begoña; Díaz–Arteaga, Adenis; Senra, Ana; Busquets, Silvia; Velásquez, Douglas A.; Al–Massadi, Omar; Varela, Luis; Gándara, Marina; López–Soriano, Francisco–Javier; Gallego, Rosalía; Seoane, Luisa M.; Argiles, Josep M.; López, Miguel; Davis, Roger J.; Sabio, Guadalupe; Rohner–Jeanrenaud, Françoise; Rahmouni, Kamal; Dieguez, Carlos; Nogueiras, Ruben

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND & AIMS Specific neuronal circuits modulate autonomic outflow to liver and white adipose tissue. Melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH)-deficient mice are hypophagic, lean, and do not develop hepatosteatosis when fed a high-fat diet. Herein, we sought to investigate the role of MCH, an orexigenic neuropeptide specifically expressed in the lateral hypothalamic area, on hepatic and adipocyte metabolism. METHODS Chronic central administration of MCH and adenoviral vectors increasing MCH signaling were performed in rats and mice. Vagal denervation was performed to assess its effect on liver metabolism. The peripheral effects on lipid metabolism were assessed by real-time polymerase chain reaction and Western blot. RESULTS We showed that the activation of MCH receptors promotes nonalcoholic fatty liver disease through the parasympathetic nervous system, whereas it increases fat deposition in white adipose tissue via the suppression of sympathetic traffic. These metabolic actions are independent of parallel changes in food intake and energy expenditure. In the liver, MCH triggers lipid accumulation and lipid uptake, with c-Jun N-terminal kinase being an essential player, whereas in adipocytes MCH induces metabolic pathways that promote lipid storage and decreases lipid mobilization. Genetic activation of MCH receptors or infusion of MCH specifically in the lateral hypothalamic area modulated hepatic lipid metabolism, whereas the specific activation of this receptor in the arcuate nucleus affected adipocyte metabolism. CONCLUSIONS Our findings show that central MCH directly controls hepatic and adipocyte metabolism through different pathways. PMID:23142626

  17. New SPECT tracers: Example of tracers of proteoglycans and melanin; Nouveaux traceurs TEMP: exemple des traceurs des proteoglycanes et de la melanine

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cachin, F.; Mestas, D.; Kelly, A.; Merlin, C.; Veyre, A.; Maublant, J. [CRLCC Jean-Perrin, Service de Medecine Nucleaire, 63 - Clermont-Ferrand (France); Cachin, F.; Chezal, J.M.; Miot-Noirault, E.; Moins, N.; Auzeloux, P.; Vidal, A.; Bonnet-Duquennoy, M.; Boisgard, S.; D' Incan, M.; Madelmont, J.C.; Maublant, J. [Universite d' Auvergne, EA 4231, 63 - Clermont-Ferrand (France); Boisgard, S. [CHRU Gabriel-Montpied, Service d' Orthopedie, 63 - Clermont-Ferrand (France); D' Incan, M. [CHRU Gabriel-Montpied, Service de Dermatologie, 63 - Clermont-Ferrand (France); Redini, F. [Inserm, U957-EA3822, Faculte de Medecine, 44 - Nantes (France); Filaire, M. [Universite d' Auvergne, Lab. d' Anatomie, 63 - Clermont-Ferrand (France)

    2009-02-15

    The majority of research program on new radiopharmaceuticals turn to tracers used for positron emission tomography (PET). Only a few teams work on new non fluorine labeled tracers. However, the coming of SPECT/CT gamma cameras, the arrival of semi-conductors gamma cameras should boost the development of non-PET tracers. We exhibit in this article the experience acquired by our laboratory in the conception and design of two new non fluorine labelled compounds. The {sup 99m}Tc-N.T.P. 15-5 (N.T.P. 15-5 for N-[tri-ethyl-ammonium]-3-propyl-[15]ane-N5) which binds to proteoglycans could be used for the diagnosis and staging of osteoarthritis and chondrosarcoma. The iodo benzamides, specific to the melanin, are nowadays compared to {sup 18}F-fluorodeoxyglucose in a phase III clinical trial for the diagnosis and detection of melanoma metastasis. Our last development focus on N-[2-(diethyl-amino)ethyl]-4 and 2-iodo benzamides respectively B.Z.A. and B.Z.A.2 hetero-aromatic analogues usable for melanoma treatment. (authors)

  18. Ice Cores

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Records of past temperature, precipitation, atmospheric trace gases, and other aspects of climate and environment derived from ice cores drilled on glaciers and ice...

  19. Core BPEL

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hallwyl, Tim; Højsgaard, Espen

    extensions. Combined with the fact that the language definition does not provide a formal semantics, it is an arduous task to work formally with the language (e.g. to give an implementation). In this paper we identify a core subset of the language, called Core BPEL, which has fewer and simpler constructs......, does not allow omissions, and does not contain ignorable elements. We do so by identifying syntactic sugar, including default values, and ignorable elements in WS-BPEL. The analysis results in a translation from the full language to the core subset. Thus, we reduce the effort needed for working...... formally with WS-BPEL, as one, without loss of generality, need only consider the much simpler Core BPEL. This report may also be viewed as an addendum to the WS-BPEL standard specification, which clarifies the WS-BPEL syntax and presents the essential elements of the language in a more concise way...

  20. Core BPEL

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hallwyl, Tim; Højsgaard, Espen

    extensions. Combined with the fact that the language definition does not provide a formal semantics, it is an arduous task to work formally with the language (e.g. to give an implementation). In this paper we identify a core subset of the language, called Core BPEL, which has fewer and simpler constructs......, does not allow omissions, and does not contain ignorable elements. We do so by identifying syntactic sugar, including default values, and ignorable elements in WS-BPEL. The analysis results in a translation from the full language to the core subset. Thus, we reduce the effort needed for working...... formally with WS-BPEL, as one, without loss of generality, need only consider the much simpler Core BPEL. This report may also be viewed as an addendum to the WS-BPEL standard specification, which clarifies the WS-BPEL syntax and presents the essential elements of the language in a more concise way...

  1. Core benefits

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Keith, Brian W

    2010-01-01

    This SPEC Kit explores the core employment benefits of retirement, and life, health, and other insurance -benefits that are typically decided by the parent institution and often have significant governmental regulation...

  2. 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.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Hong; Liang, Jie-ping; Li, Pei-bo; Peng, Wei; Peng, Yao-yao; Zhang, Gao-min; Xie, Cheng-shi; Long, Chao-feng; Su, Wei-wei

    2014-01-01

    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

  3. On the Dimensions of Promoting Popularization Media Direction of the Socialist Core Value System%论推进社会主义核心价值体系大众化的媒体引导向度

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    陈赵阳

    2011-01-01

    Media is a important carrier to spread ideological culture.It is a main channel to popularize mainstream values.It can play an important role in organizing and directing public opinion.We must play fully respective advantage of traditional and new media in the course of promoting popularization of the socialist core value system.We should not only consolidate position of traditional media direction,but also exploit channel of new media direction.The traditional media must cooperate with new media to build strong vigor of public opinion.It can boost up charm,inspire force and influence maximally in order to cause people to identify with the socialist core value system.%媒体是思想文化传播的重要载体,是推广主流价值观的主渠道,在组织和引导社会舆论方面发挥着重要作用。在推进社会主义核心价值体系大众化进程中,要充分发挥传统媒体和新兴媒体的各自优势,不断巩固传统媒体引导阵地,积极开拓新兴媒体引导渠道,实现传统媒体和新兴媒体的联动,努力营造舆论强势,最大限度地增强理论宣传的吸引力、感染力和影响力,从而使社会主义核心价值体系更好地在广大人民群众中入耳、入脑、入心。

  4. Black perithecial pigmentation in Fusarium species is due to the accumulation of 5-deoxybostrycoidin-based melanin

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frandsen, Rasmus John Normand; Rasmussen, Silas Anselm; Knudsen, Peter Boldsen

    2016-01-01

    anthrone (4) and purpurfusarin (5). The novel dimeric bostrycoidin purpurfusarin (5) was found to inhibit the growth of Candida albicans with an IC50 of 8.0 +/-1.9 mu M. The results show that Fusarium species with black perithecia have a previously undescribed form of 5-deoxybostrycoidin based melanin...

  5. [Influence of low dozes of ionizing radiation on accumulation of melanin pigments and catalase and superoxidedismutase activities in Cladosporium cladosporioides].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuhaĭ, T I

    2007-01-01

    Influence of low dozes of ionizing radiation on melanin pigments synthesis and activity of antioxidant enzymes catalase and superoxidedismutase of two strains of Cladosporium cladosporioides 4, (isolated from radioactive soil) and 396 (control) were investigated. It was shown, that in C. cladosporioides 4 under the exposure of ionizing radiation an increase of melanin synthesis in a stationary growth phase and increase of superoxidedismutase activity in a logarithmic phase were observed; in the control strain C. cladosporioides 396 activation of melanin synthesis and superoxide dismutase activity in both growth phases was revealed. It was established that in C. cladosporioides 4 the endocellular catalase activity in a logarithmic phase is 3.2 times higher, than in control strain. Under the action of ionizing radiation a 2-fold increase of this enzyme activity unlike the control strain in which the activity inhibition was revealed. The obtained results testify to the complex response of antioxidant systems and melanin to the action of low dozes of radiation which depends on the growth phase and presence of radioadaptation properties in the investigated fungi.

  6. Human eccrine sweat gland cells turn into melanin-uptaking keratinocytes in dermo-epidermal skin substitutes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Böttcher-Haberzeth, Sophie; Biedermann, Thomas; Pontiggia, Luca; Braziulis, Erik; Schiestl, Clemens; Hendriks, Bart; Eichhoff, Ossia M; Widmer, Daniel S; Meuli-Simmen, Claudia; Meuli, Martin; Reichmann, Ernst

    2013-02-01

    Recently, Biedermann et al. (2010) have demonstrated that human eccrine sweat gland cells can develop a multilayered epidermis. The question still remains whether these cells can fulfill exclusive and very specific functional properties of epidermal keratinocytes, such as the incorporation of melanin, a feature absent in sweat gland cells. We added human melanocytes to eccrine sweat gland cells to let them develop into an epidermal analog in vivo. The interaction between melanocytes and sweat gland-derived keratinocytes was investigated. The following results were gained: (1) macroscopically, a pigmentation of the substitutes was seen 2-3 weeks after transplantation; (2) we confirmed the development of a multilayered, stratified epidermis with melanocytes distributed evenly throughout the basal layer; (3) melanocytic dendrites projected to suprabasal layers; and (4) melanin was observed to be integrated into former eccrine sweat gland cells. These skin substitutes were similar or equal to skin substitutes cultured from human epidermal keratinocytes. The only differences observed were a delay in pigmentation and less melanin uptake. These data suggest that eccrine sweat gland cells can form a functional epidermal melanin unit, thereby providing striking evidence that they can assume one of the most characteristic keratinocyte properties.

  7. Inhibitory effect of a novel combination of Salvia hispanica (chia) seed and Punica granatum (pomegranate) fruit extracts on melanin production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diwakar, Ganesh; Rana, Jatinder; Saito, Lisa; Vredeveld, Doug; Zemaitis, Dorothy; Scholten, Jeffrey

    2014-09-01

    In recent years, dietary fatty acids have been extensively evaluated for nutritional as well as cosmetic benefits. Among the dietary fats, the omega-3 (ω3) and omega-6 (ω6) forms of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) have been found to exhibit many biological functions in the skin such as prevention of transepidermal water loss, maintenance of the stratum corneum epidermal barrier, and disruption of melanogenesis in epidermal melanocytes. In this study, we examined the effect of chia seed extract, high in ω3 (linolenic acid) and ω6 (linoleic acid) PUFAs, for its capacity to affect melanogenesis. Chia seed extract was shown to inhibit melanin biosynthesis in Melan-a cells; however, linoleic and α-linolenic acids alone did not effectively reduce melanin content. Further investigation demonstrated that chia seed extract in combination with pomegranate fruit extract had a synergistic effect on the inhibition of melanin biosynthesis with no corresponding effect on tyrosinase activity. Investigation of the possible mechanism of action revealed that chia seed extract downregulated expression of melanogenesis-related genes (Tyr, Tyrp1, and Mc1r), alone and in combination with pomegranate fruit extract, suggesting that the inhibition of melanin biosynthesis by a novel combination of chia seed and pomegranate fruit extracts is possibly due to the downregulation of gene expression of key melanogenic enzymes.

  8. 2-Ethoxybenzamide stimulates melanin synthesis in B16F1 melanoma cells via the CREB signaling pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Kazuomi; Ando, Ryosuke; Kobayashi, Honoka; Nishio, Takashi

    2016-12-01

    Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are frequently used for the treatment of inflammation, pain, and fever. In this study, we found that 2-ethoxybenzamide (ETZ) significantly enhanced melanin synthesis in B16F1 melanoma cells, and also induced melanosome formation. Therefore, we investigated the mechanism by which ETZ up-regulated melanin synthesis. Western blot analysis demonstrated that ETZ increased melanogenic protein levels, except that for TRP-2. Moreover, semi-quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and real-time RT-PCR analyses showed that ETZ enhanced the mRNA levels of melanogenic genes, including microphthalmia-associated transcription factor and melanocortin 1 receptor. We also observed phosphorylation of cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB) following ETZ treatment. However, ETZ did not affect intracellular cAMP levels. ERK was also activated by ETZ treatment, and melanin content was enhanced upon treatment with the specific ERK inhibitor PD98059. Together, our results indicate that ETZ induces melanin synthesis via CREB phosphorylation.

  9. Interpretation of Ocular Melanin Drug Binding Assays. Alternatives to the Model of Multiple Classes of Independent Sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manzanares, José A; Rimpelä, Anna-Kaisa; Urtti, Arto

    2016-04-04

    Melanin has a high binding affinity for a wide range of drugs. The determination of the melanin binding capacity and its binding affinity are important, e.g., in the determination of the ocular drug distribution, the prediction of drug effects in the eye, and the trans-scleral drug delivery. The binding parameters estimated from a given data set vary significantly when using different isotherms or different nonlinear fitting methods. In this work, the commonly used bi-Langmuir isotherm, which assumes two classes of independent sites, is confronted with the Sips isotherm. Direct, log-log, and Scatchard plots are used, and the interpretation of the binding curves in the latter is critically analyzed. In addition to the goodness of fit, the emphasis is placed on the physical meaning of the binding parameters. The bi-Langmuir model imposes a bimodal distribution of binding energies for the sites on the melanin granules, but the actual distribution is most likely continuous and unimodal, as assumed by the Sips isotherm. Hence, the latter describes more accurately the distribution of binding energies and also the experimental results of melanin binding to drugs and metal ions. Simulations are used to show that the existence of two classes of sites cannot be confirmed on the sole basis of the shape of the binding curve in the Scatchard plot, and that serious doubts may appear on the meaning of the binding parameters of the bi-Langmuir model. Experimental results of melanin binding to chloroquine and metoprolol are used to illustrate the importance of the choice of the binding isotherm and of the method used to evaluate the binding parameters.

  10. Melanin index in assessing the treatment efficacy of 1064 nm Q switched Nd-Yag laser in nevus of Ota

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gomathy Sethuraman

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Q-switched neodymium-yttrium aluminium-garnet (Q switched Nd-Yag laser has been used in the treatment of nevus of Ota in all skin types with variable success rate. Data with an objective assessment parameter to this laser treatment is lacking. Objective: To evaluate the utility of melanin index in assessing the treatment response and also determine the efficacy and safety of the Q-switched Nd-Yag laser (1064-nm in the treatment of nevus of Ota in Fitzpatrick skin types IV and V. Materials and Methods: A total of 35 patients treated with Nd-Yag laser were studied. The objective improvement (pigment clearance was determined by melanin index from two fixed points: A1, 2 cm below the pupil at the mid pupillary line (when the gaze is fixed; A2, the most prominent part of zygoma. The melanin index in these two areas was recorded as M1 and M2, respectively. The subjective clinical improvement was determined by the physician and the patient global assessment score. Results: The mean baseline melanin indices M1 and M2 were 59.54 ± 9.72 and 59.02 ± 9.16, respectively. At the last visit the mean M1 and M2 decreased to 53.8 ± 8.55 (P 50% pigment clearance. Conclusion: The melanin index, a simple non-invasive parameter is useful in assessing the treatment response more objectively. The 1064-nm Q-switched Nd-Yag laser offers good improvement in patients with nevus of Ota in darker skin types IV/V.

  11. Melanin Index in Assessing the Treatment Efficacy of 1064 nm Q Switched Nd-Yag Laser in Nevus of Ota

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sethuraman, Gomathy; Sharma, Vinod K; Sreenivas, Vishnubhatla

    2013-01-01

    Background: Q-switched neodymium-yttrium aluminium-garnet (Q switched Nd-Yag) laser has been used in the treatment of nevus of Ota in all skin types with variable success rate. Data with an objective assessment parameter to this laser treatment is lacking. Objective: To evaluate the utility of melanin index in assessing the treatment response and also determine the efficacy and safety of the Q-switched Nd-Yag laser (1064-nm) in the treatment of nevus of Ota in Fitzpatrick skin types IV and V. Materials and Methods: A total of 35 patients treated with Nd-Yag laser were studied. The objective improvement (pigment clearance) was determined by melanin index from two fixed points: A1, 2 cm below the pupil at the mid pupillary line (when the gaze is fixed); A2, the most prominent part of zygoma. The melanin index in these two areas was recorded as M1 and M2, respectively. The subjective clinical improvement was determined by the physician and the patient global assessment score. Results: The mean baseline melanin indices M1 and M2 were 59.54 ± 9.72 and 59.02 ± 9.16, respectively. At the last visit the mean M1 and M2 decreased to 53.8 ± 8.55 (P 50% pigment clearance. Conclusion: The melanin index, a simple non-invasive parameter is useful in assessing the treatment response more objectively. The 1064-nm Q-switched Nd-Yag laser offers good improvement in patients with nevus of Ota in darker skin types IV/V. PMID:24470713

  12. Bioproduction, characterization, anticancer and antioxidant activities of extracellular melanin pigment produced by newly isolated microbial cell factories Streptomyces glaucescens NEAE-H

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Naggar, Noura El-Ahmady; El-Ewasy, Sara M.

    2017-01-01

    In this present study, a newly isolated strain, Streptomyces sp. NEAE-H, capable of producing high amount of black extracellular melanin pigment on peptone-yeast extract iron agar and identified as Streptomyces glaucescens NEAE-H. Plackett–Burman statistical design was conducted for initial screening of 17 independent (assigned) variables for their significances on melanin pigment production by Streptomyces glaucescens NEAE-H. The most significant factors affecting melanin production are incubation period, protease-peptone and ferric ammonium citrate. The levels of these significant variables and their interaction effects were optimized by using face-centered central composite design. The maximum melanin production (31.650 μg/0.1 ml) and tyrosinase activity (6089.10 U/ml) were achieved in the central point runs under the conditions of incubation period (6 days), protease-peptone (5 g/L) and ferric ammonium citrate (0.5 g/L). Melanin pigment was recovered by acid-treatment. Higher absorption of the purified melanin pigment was observed in the UV region at 250 nm. It appeared to have defined small spheres by scanning electron microscopy imaging. The maximum melanin yield was 350 mg dry wt/L of production medium. In vitro anticancer activity of melanin pigment was assayed against skin cancer cell line using MTT assay. The IC50 value was 16.34 ± 1.31 μg/ml for melanin and 8.8 ± 0.5 μg/ml for standard 5-fluorouracil. PMID:28195138

  13. Optical (DRUV-VIS and magnetic (EPR behavior of synthetic melanins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Júlio César Pereira dos Santos

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available The properties of melanins prepared from L-dopa oxidation by both chemical and electrochemical methods are reported, searching for a material with more intense optical absorption in the visible region. The characterization of the samples have been done by cyclic voltammetry (CV, cronoamperometry (CA, Fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy (FTIR, electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy (EPR and diffuse reflectance ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy (DRUV-VIS techniques. The electrochemical method enhanced the organic free radical (spin concentration and the absorption intensity in the visible region of the spectrum. The DRUV-VIS technique along with mathematical tools, such as the Kubelka-Munk remission function, were good options for the characterization of the final products.

  14. The progress in animal melanin%动物黑色素研究进展

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    伍革民; 彭光旭

    2005-01-01

    黑色素(melanin)是一种生物多聚体。它广泛存在于人和动物皮肤,毛发和眼睛中。动物黑色素可分为两类,一是真黑色素(eumelanin),不含硫原子,呈棕色或黑色;二是脱黑色素(pheomelanin),含硫原子,呈黄色或微红棕色。动物与人的皮肤毛发色素沉着决定于其所含真黑色素与脱黑色素的相对数量。脊椎动物黑色素的合成与酪氨酸酶(tyrosinase)密切相关。

  15. Electrochemical growth of synthetic melanin thin films by constant potential methods

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, In Gyun; Nam, Hye Jin; Ahn, Hyeon Ju [Department of Chemistry, School of Chemical Materials Science, Institute of Basic Sciences, Sungkyunkwan Advanced Institute of NanoTechnology (SAINT), Sungkyunkwan University, Chunchun-dong, Gyunggi-do, Suwon 440-746 (Korea, Republic of); Jung, Duk-Young, E-mail: dyjung@skku.ed [Department of Chemistry, School of Chemical Materials Science, Institute of Basic Sciences, Sungkyunkwan Advanced Institute of NanoTechnology (SAINT), Sungkyunkwan University, Chunchun-dong, Gyunggi-do, Suwon 440-746 (Korea, Republic of)

    2011-02-28

    Polymerized melanin thin films were electrochemically synthesized in a 5,6-dihydroxyindole precursor solution on indium tin oxide (ITO) substrates using the cyclic voltammetry and constant potential methods. Tris(hydroxymethyl)aminomethane (THAM) and phosphate buffer solutions were applied to prepare the films that were well deposited to the ITO substrates. The films that were synthesized in the THAM buffer solution exhibited a faster growth rate and better adhesion to the ITO electrodes than the films in the phosphate buffer. The film thickness linearly increased at the growth rate of 0.8 nm/s as the deposition time and number of cycles increased. Two electrochemical conditions produced similar thicknesses as well as physical properties in each buffer solution. However, the constant potential method demonstrated that this provides the synthetic advantages of faster deposition and less consumption of electric charge compared to the cyclic voltammetry route.

  16. Melanin Biosynthesis Inhibition Effects of Ginsenoside Rb2 Isolated from Panax ginseng Berry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Dae Young; Jeong, Yong Tae; Jeong, Sang Chul; Lee, Mi Kyoung; Min, Jin Woo; Lee, Jae Won; Kim, Geum Soog; Lee, Seung Eun; Ahn, Young Sup; Kang, Hee Cheol; Kim, Jin Hee

    2015-12-28

    Ginsenoside Rb2 (Gin-Rb2) was purified from the fruit extract of Panax ginseng. Its chemical structure was measured by spectroscopic analysis, including HR-FAB-MS, (1)H-NMR, and IR spectroscopy. Gin-Rb2 decreased potent melanogenesis in melan-a cells, with 23.4% at 80 μM without cytotoxicity. Gin-Rb2 also decreased tyrosinase and MITF protein expression in melan-a cells. Furthermore, Gin-Rb2 presented inhibition of the body pigmentation in the zebrafish in vivo system and reduced melanin contents and tyrosinase activity. These results show that Gin-Rb2 isolated from P. ginseng may be an effective skin-whitening agent via the in vitro and in vivo systems.

  17. Novel Inhibitory Effect of N-(2-Hydroxycyclohexylvaliolamine on Melanin Production in a Human Skin Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bum-Ho Bin

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Hyper-pigmentation causes skin darkness and medical disorders, such as post-inflammatory melanoderma and melasma. Therefore, the development of anti-melanogenic agents is important for treating these conditions and for cosmetic production. In our previous paper, we demonstrated that the anti-diabetic drug voglibose, a valiolamine derivative, is a potent anti-melanogenic agent. In addition, we proposed an alternative screening strategy to identify valiolamine derivatives with high skin permeability that act as anti-melanogenic agents when applied topically. In this study, we synthesized several valiolamine derivatives with enhanced lipophilicity and examined their inhibitory effects in a human skin model. N-(2-hydroxycyclohexylvaliolamine (HV possesses a stronger inhibitory effect on melanin production than voglibose in a human skin model, suggesting that HV is a more potent anti-melanogenic agent for the skin.

  18. The contribution of structural-, psittacofulvin- and melanin-based colouration to sexual dichromatism in Australasian parrots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taysom, A J; Stuart-Fox, D; Cardoso, G C

    2011-02-01

    Colour ornamentation in animals is exceptionally diverse, but some colours may provide better signals of individual quality or more efficient visual stimuli and, thus, be more often used as sexual signals. This may depend on physiological costs, which depend on the mechanism of colour production (e.g. exogenously acquired colouration in passerine birds appears to be most sexually dichromatic). We studied sexual dichromatism in a sample of 27 Australasian parrot species with pigment- (melanin and psittacofulvin) and structural-based colouration, to test whether some of these types of colouration are more prominent in sexual ornamentation. Unlike passerines, in which long wavelength colouration (yellow to red) usually involves exogenous and costly carotenoid pigments, yellow to red colouration in parrots is based on endogenously synthesized psittacofulvin pigments. This allows us to assess whether costly exogenous pigments are necessary for these plumage colours to have a prominent role in sexual signalling. Structural blue colouration showed the largest and most consistent sexual dichromatism, both in area and perceptually relevant chromatic differences, indicating that it is often ornamental in parrots. By contrast, we found little evidence for consistent sexual dichromatism in melanin-based colouration. Unlike passerines, yellow to red colouration was not strongly sexually dichromatic: although the area of colouration was generally larger in males, colour differences between the sexes were on average imperceptible to parrots. This is consistent with the idea that the prominent yellow to red sexual dichromatism in passerines is related to the use of carotenoid pigments, rather than resulting from sensory bias for these colours.

  19. Seasonal Changes in Colour: A Comparison of Structural, Melanin- and Carotenoid-Based Plumage Colours

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delhey, Kaspar; Burger, Claudia; Fiedler, Wolfgang; Peters, Anne

    2010-01-01

    Background Plumage coloration is important for bird communication, most notably in sexual signalling. Colour is often considered a good quality indicator, and the expression of exaggerated colours may depend on individual condition during moult. After moult, plumage coloration has been deemed fixed due to the fact that feathers are dead structures. Still, many plumage colours change after moult, although whether this affects signalling has not been sufficiently assessed. Methodology/Principal Findings We studied changes in coloration after moult in four passerine birds (robin, Erithacus rubecula; blackbird, Turdus merula; blue tit, Cyanistes caeruleus; and great tit, Parus major) displaying various coloration types (melanin-, carotenoid-based and structural). Birds were caught regularly during three years to measure plumage reflectance. We used models of avian colour vision to derive two variables, one describing chromatic and the other achromatic variation over the year that can be compared in magnitude among different colour types. All studied plumage patches but one (yellow breast of the blue tit) showed significant chromatic changes over the year, although these were smaller than for a typical dynamic trait (bill colour). Overall, structural colours showed a reduction in relative reflectance at shorter wavelengths, carotenoid-based colours the opposite pattern, while no general pattern was found for melanin-based colours. Achromatic changes were also common, but there were no consistent patterns of change for the different types of colours. Conclusions/Significance Changes of plumage coloration independent of moult are probably widespread; they should be perceivable by birds and have the potential to affect colour signalling. PMID:20644723

  20. Coloration principles of nymphaline butterflies - thin films, melanin, ommochromes and wing scale stacking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stavenga, Doekele G; Leertouwer, Hein L; Wilts, Bodo D

    2014-06-15

    The coloration of the common butterflies Aglais urticae (small tortoiseshell), Aglais io (peacock) and Vanessa atalanta (red admiral), belonging to the butterfly subfamily Nymphalinae, is due to the species-specific patterning of differently coloured scales on their wings. We investigated the scales' structural and pigmentary properties by applying scanning electron microscopy, (micro)spectrophotometry and imaging scatterometry. The anatomy of the wing scales appears to be basically identical, with an approximately flat lower lamina connected by trabeculae to a highly structured upper lamina, which consists of an array of longitudinal, parallel ridges and transversal crossribs. Isolated scales observed at the abwing (upper) side are blue, yellow, orange, red, brown or black, depending on their pigmentation. The yellow, orange and red scales contain various amounts of 3-OH-kynurenine and ommochrome pigment, black scales contain a high density of melanin, and blue scales have a minor amount of melanin pigment. Observing the scales from their adwing (lower) side always revealed a structural colour, which is blue in the case of blue, red and black scales, but orange for orange scales. The structural colours are created by the lower lamina, which acts as an optical thin film. Its reflectance spectrum, crucially determined by the lamina thickness, appears to be well tuned to the scales' pigmentary spectrum. The colours observed locally on the wing are also due to the degree of scale stacking. Thin films, tuned pigments and combinations of stacked scales together determine the wing coloration of nymphaline butterflies. © 2014. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  1. Hepatitis B virus basal core promoter mutations A1762T/G1764A are associated with genotype C and a low serum HBsAg level in chronically-infected HBeAg-positive Chinese patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Chun-Hui; Zhao, Cheng-Yu; Ding, Hai; Peng, Ya-Qin; Jin, Peng-Yuan; Yan, Ling; Zhuang, Hui; Li, Tong

    2012-11-01

    The present study was aimed to obtain baseline information of basal core promoter A1762T/G1764A and precore G1896A mutations of hepatitis B virus (HBV) in 192 HBeAg-positive chronically-infected Chinese patients, who were potential candidates for antiviral treatment. The detection of these mutations (including minor mutant subpopulations) was achieved by direct sequencing, whose sensitivity for minor mutant subpopulations identification was confirmed by clone sequencing. Patients enrolled were infected with either genotype B (46.35%) or C (53.65%) HBV identified by routine tests in our laboratory. The A1762T/G1764A or G1896A mutations were detected in 125specimens (125/192, 65.10%), in which 77 (77/125, 61.60%) existed as subpopulations. The A1762T/G1764A mutations were found to be more prevalent in genotype C than that in genotype B HBV [62.14% (64/103) vs. 20.22% (18/89), Pgenotypes. The emergence of A1762T/G1764A mutations was also found to be associated with an older age, an elevated ALT/AST level, and a lower HBsAg level in serum [wild-type vs. mutant: 4.57 (3.46-5.42) vs. 3.93 (2.51-5.36), Pgenotype C and a low serum HBsAg level in chronically-infected HBeAg-positive Chinese patients.

  2. 构建MYC反应元件修饰hTERT核心启动子引导荧光素酶表达的腺病毒载体%Construction of adenoviral vector for luciferase driven by hTERT core promoter modified with MYC-responsive elements

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    杨旻; 王臻; 李立文; 苏明权; 于文彬

    2003-01-01

    AIM:To construct adenoviral vectors for luciferase driven by human telomerase reverse transcriptase(hTERT) core promoter with multimer of MYC responsive elements.METHODS:Multimer of MYC responsive elements was cloned into the upstream site of hTERT core promoter and the modified hTERT promoter and luciferase were cloned into the plasmid pDC316 to construct shuttle plasmids which cotransfected HEK 293 cells with rescue plasmid pBHGlox(delta)E1,3Cre to achieve recombinant adenoviral vectors.The cytopathic effects and PCR using primers specific for luciferase were used to identify the recombinant adenoviral vectors.RESULTS:Adenoviral vectors with luciferase driven by hTERT core promoter with none or positive and negative six copies of MYC responsive elements were constructed and amplified.The titer of the adenovirus were 3.5× 106 pfu/ml,2.5× 106 pfu/ml and 1.5× 106 pfu/ml respectively determined by plaque assay.CONCLUSION:The further research on transciriptional targeting in osteosarcoma gene therapy can be done using adenoviral vectors with luciferase driven by hTERT promoter with MYC responsive elements.

  3. Cerebrospinal fluid melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH and hypocretin-1 (HCRT-1, orexin-A in Alzheimer's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frank M Schmidt

    Full Text Available Ancillary to decline in cognitive abilities, patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD frequently suffer from behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD. Hypothalamic polypeptides such as melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH and hypocretin-1 (HCRT-1, orexin-A are promoters of sleep-wake regulation and energy homeostasis and are found to impact on cognitive performance. To investigate the role of MCH and HCRT-1 in AD, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF levels were measured in 33 patients with AD and 33 healthy subjects (HS using a fluorescence immunoassay (FIA. A significant main effect of diagnosis (F(1,62 = 8.490, p<0.01 on MCH levels was found between AD (93.76±13.47 pg/mL and HS (84.65±11.40 pg/mL. MCH correlated with T-tau (r = 0.47; p<0.01 and P-tau (r = 0.404; p<0.05 in the AD but not in the HS. CSF-MCH correlated negatively with MMSE scores in the AD (r = -0.362, p<0.05 and was increased in more severely affected patients (MMSE≤20 compared to HS (p<0.001 and BPSD-positive patients compared to HS (p<0.05. In CSF-HCRT-1, a significant main effect of sex (F(1,31 = 4.400, p<0.05 with elevated levels in females (90.93±17.37 pg/mL vs. 82.73±15.39 pg/mL was found whereas diagnosis and the sex*diagnosis interaction were not significant. Elevated levels of MCH in patients suffering from AD and correlation with Tau and severity of cognitive impairment point towards an impact of MCH in AD. Gender differences of CSF-HCRT-1 controversially portend a previously reported gender dependence of HCRT-1-regulation. Histochemical and actigraphic explorations are warranted to further elucidate alterations of hypothalamic transmitter regulation in AD.

  4. Bifunctional effects of O-methylated flavones from Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi on melanocytes: Inhibition of melanin production and intracellular melanosome transport

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsuji-Naito, Kentaro

    2017-01-01

    The growing interest in skin lightening has recently renewed attention on the esthetic applications of Chinese herbal medicine. Although Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi is used for antipyretic and antiinflammatory purposes, its whitening effect remains unclear. This study reports three major findings: (1) S. baicalensis has a potent inhibitory effect on melanogenesis; (2) wogonin and its glycoside are the active components of S. baicalensis; and (3) O-methylated flavones from S. baicalensis, such as wogonin, inhibit intracellular melanosome transport. Using a melanin quantification assay, we showed that S. baicalensis potently inhibits melanogenesis in B16F10 cells. Componential analyses revealed that the main components of S. baicalensis are baicalin, wogonoside, baicalein, wogonin, and oroxylin A. Among these five flavones, wogonin and wogonoside consistently inhibited melanogenesis in both B16F10 melanoma cells and primary melanocytes. Wogonin exhibited the strongest inhibition of melanin production and markedly lightened the color of skin equivalents. We identified microphthalmia-associated transcription factor and tyrosinase-related proteins as potential targets of wogonin- and wogonoside-induced melanogenesis suppression. In culture, we found that the melanosomes in wogonin-treated B16F10 cells were localized to the perinuclear region. Immunoblotting analyses revealed that wogonin significantly reduced in melanophilin protein, which is required for actin-based melanosome transport. Other actin-based melanosome transport-related molecules, i.e., Rab27A and myosin Va, were not affected by wogonin. Cotreatment with MG132 blocked the wogonin-induced decrease in melanophilin, suggesting that wogonin promotes the proteolytic degradation of melanophilin via the calpain/proteasomal pathway. We determined that the structural specificities of the mono-O-methyl group in the flavone A-ring and the aglycone form were responsible for reducing melanosome transport

  5. Effect of calcipotriol on melanin synthesis by human melanoeytes%卡泊三醇对黑素细胞黑素合成的影响

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    汤芦艳; 傅雯雯; 张勇; 祝绿川; 郑志忠

    2009-01-01

    tyrosinase activity by 137%and 123%,and enhanced melanin synthesis by 40.63%and 18.75%,respectively,compamd with untreated melanocytes(both P<0.05).Moreover,the tyrosinase protein level increased by 270.4%(P<0.05)in melanocytes treated with calcipotriol at 10~(-9) mol/L for 24 hours.The strongest tyrosinase activity and melanin synthesis was observed in melanocytes treated with calcipotriol of 10~(-9) moI/L.Conclusions The proliferation of melanocytes is unaffected by calcipotriol at 10~(-9) to 10~(-5) mol/L,but it can elevate the expression of tyrosinase protein,enhance tyrosinase activity,and promote melanin synthesis in melanocytes.

  6. The − 5 A/G single-nucleotide polymorphism in the core promoter region of MT2A and its effect on allele-specific gene expression and Cd, Zn and Cu levels in laryngeal cancer

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Starska, Katarzyna, E-mail: katarzyna.starska@umed.lodz.pl [I Department of Otolaryngology and Laryngological Oncology, Medical University of Łódź, Kopcinskiego 22, 90-153 Łódź (Poland); Krześlak, Anna; Forma, Ewa [Department of Cytobiochemistry, University of Łódź, Pomorska 142/143, 90-236 Łódź (Poland); Olszewski, Jurek [II Department of Otolaryngology and Laryngological Oncology, Medical University of Łódź, Żeromskiego 113, 90-549 Łódź (Poland); Morawiec-Sztandera, Alina [Department of Head and Neck Surgery, Medical University of Łódź, Paderewskiego 4, 93-509 Łódź (Poland); Aleksandrowicz, Paweł [Department of Otolaryngology and Laryngological Oncology, Medical University of Lublin, Jaczewskiego 8, 20-954 Lublin (Poland); Lewy-Trenda, Iwona [Department of Pathology, Medical University of Łódź, Pomorska 251, 92-213 Łódź (Poland); and others

    2014-10-15

    Metallothioneins (MTs) are low molecular weight, cysteine-rich heavy metal-binding proteins which participate in the mechanisms of Zn homeostasis, and protect against toxic metals. MTs contain metal-thiolate cluster groups and suppress metal toxicity by binding to them. The aim of this study was to determine the − 5 A/G (rs28366003) single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the core promoter region of the MT2A gene and to investigate its effect on allele-specific gene expression and Cd, Zn and Cu content in squamous cell laryngeal cancer (SCC) and non-cancerous laryngeal mucosa (NCM) as a control. The MT2A promoter region − 5 A/G SNP was determined by restriction fragment length polymorphism using 323 SCC and 116 NCM. MT2A gene analysis was performed by quantitative real-time PCR. The frequency of A allele carriage was 94.2% and 91.8% in SCC and NCM, respectively, while G allele carriage was detected in 5.8% and 8.2% of SCC and NCM samples, respectively. As a result, a significant association was identified between the − 5 A/G SNP in the MT2A gene with mRNA expression in both groups. Metal levels were analyzed by flame atomic absorption spectrometry. The significant differences were identified between A/A and both the A/G and G/G genotypes, with regard to the concentration of the contaminating metal. The Spearman rank correlation results showed that the MT2A expression and Cd, Zn, Cu levels were negatively correlated. Results obtained in this study suggest that − 5 A/G SNP in MT2A gene may have an effect on allele-specific gene expression and accumulation of metal levels in laryngeal cancer. - Highlights: • MT2A gene expression and metal content in laryngeal cancer tissues • Association between SNP (rs28366003) and expression of MT2A • Significant associations between the SNP and Cd, Zn and Cu levels • Negative correlation between MT2A gene expression and Cd, Zn and Cu levels.

  7. Core Java

    CERN Document Server

    Horstmann, Cay S

    2013-01-01

    Fully updated to reflect Java SE 7 language changes, Core Java™, Volume I—Fundamentals, Ninth Edition, is the definitive guide to the Java platform. Designed for serious programmers, this reliable, unbiased, no-nonsense tutorial illuminates key Java language and library features with thoroughly tested code examples. As in previous editions, all code is easy to understand, reflects modern best practices, and is specifically designed to help jumpstart your projects. Volume I quickly brings you up-to-speed on Java SE 7 core language enhancements, including the diamond operator, improved resource handling, and catching of multiple exceptions. All of the code examples have been updated to reflect these enhancements, and complete descriptions of new SE 7 features are integrated with insightful explanations of fundamental Java concepts.

  8. Low-melanin containing pullulan production from sugarcane bagasse hydrolysate by Aureobasidium pullulans in fermentations assisted by light-emitting diode.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terán Hilares, Ruly; Orsi, Camila Ayres; Ahmed, Muhammad Ajaz; Marcelino, Paulo Franco; Menegatti, Carlos Renato; da Silva, Silvio Silvério; Dos Santos, Júlio César

    2017-04-01

    Pullulan is a polymer produced by Aureobasidium pullulans and the main bottleneck for its industrial production is the presence of melanin pigment. In this study, light-emitting diodes (LEDs) of different wavelengths were used to assist the fermentation process aiming to produce low-melanin containing pullulan by wild strain of A. pullulans LB83 with different carbon sources. Under white light using glucose-based medium, 11.75g.L(-1) of pullulan with high melanin content (45.70UA540nm.g(-1)) was obtained, this production improved in process assisted by blue LED light, that resulted in 15.77g.L(-1) of pullulan with reduced content of melanin (4.46UA540nm.g(-1)). By using sugarcane bagasse (SCB) hydrolysate as carbon source, similar concentration of pullulan (about 20g.L(-1)) was achieved using white and blue LED lights, with lower melanin contents in last. Use of LED light was found as a promising approach to assist biotechnological process for low-melanin containing pullulan production. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Variation in melanin content and composition in type V and VI photoexposed and photoprotected human skin: the dominant role of DHI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alaluf, S; Heath, A; Carter, N; Atkins, D; Mahalingam, H; Barrett, K; Kolb, R; Smit, N

    2001-10-01

    A combination of techniques, including high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), spectrophotometric measurements, and a novel method for quantifying melanosome morphology, were applied to the analysis of melanin content and composition in highly pigmented (Fitzpatrick type V and VI) human skin. We found that total epidermal melanin content is significantly elevated in photoexposed type V and VI skin (approximately 1.6 x), while analysis of individual melanin components suggests that pheomelanin content increases only slightly, whereas 5,6-dihydroxyindole-2-carboxylic acid (DHICA)-eumelanin and to a greater extent 5,6-dihydroxyindole (DHI)-eumelanin content are both markedly elevated. Analysis of the relative composition of epidermal melanin in these subjects revealed that DHI-eumelanin is the largest single component (approximately 60-70%), followed by DHICA-eumelanin (25-35%), with pheomelanin being a relatively minor component (2-8%). Moreover, there was a comparative enrichment of DHI-eumelanin at photoexposed sites, with a corresponding decline in the relative contributions from DHICA-eumelanin and pheomelanin. There was also a good correlation and close agreement between the concentration of spheroidal melanosomes determined by morphological image analysis and the concentration of pheomelanin determined by a combination of HPLC and spectrophotometric analysis (r = 0.89, P DHI-eumelanin formation is the dominant pathway for melanin synthesis in heavily pigmented (Fitzpatrick V and VI) skin types in vivo, and is the favoured pathway when melanin production is increased in chronically photoexposed skin.

  10. Melanins as biomarkers of ovarian follicular atresia in the catfish Heteropneustes fossilis: biochemical and histochemical characterization, seasonal variation and hormone effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Ravi; Joy, Keerikkattil P

    2015-06-01

    Follicular atresia is a common feature of the vertebrate ovary that occurs at different stages of folliculogenesis and ovarian regression. It has physiological significance to maintain homeostasis and control fecundity, and ensure removal of post-ovulatory follicular remnants for preparing the ovary for the next cycle. Pigments appear late in the atretic process as indigestible waste formed out of the degradation of the oocytes, follicle wall and granulocytes. In the present study, pigment accumulation was demonstrated by Schmorl's and Perls' staining methods in the atretic ovarian follicles of Heteropneustes fossilis during follicular development and regression. Melanins were characterized spectrophotometrically for the first time in fish ovary. The predominant form is eumelanin, followed by pheomelanin and alkali-soluble melanin. Melanins showed significant seasonal variations with levels low in gonad resting phase, increasing to the peak in the post-spawning phase. The concentration of melanins increased time-dependently in post-ovulated ovary after human chorionic gonadotropin treatment. In the spawning phase, in vitro incubation of ovary slices with estradiol-17β or dexamethasone for 8 or 16 h decreased both eumelanin and pheomelanin levels time-dependently. The alkali-soluble melanin showed a significant decrease only in the dexamethasone group at 16 h. The results show that melanin assay can be used as a biomarker of follicular atresia in fish ovary, natural or induced by environmental toxicants.

  11. Near-infrared excited state dynamics of melanins: the effects of iron content, photo-damage, chemical oxidation, and aggregate size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simpson, Mary Jane; Wilson, Jesse W; Robles, Francisco E; Dall, Christopher P; Glass, Keely; Simon, John D; Warren, Warren S

    2014-02-13

    Ultrafast pump-probe measurements can discriminate the two forms of melanin found in biological tissue (eumelanin and pheomelanin), which may be useful for diagnosing and grading melanoma. However, recent work has shown that bound iron content changes eumelanin's pump-probe response, making it more similar to that of pheomelanin. Here we record the pump-probe response of these melanins at a wider range of wavelengths than previous work and show that with shorter pump wavelengths the response crosses over from being dominated by ground-state bleaching to being dominated by excited-state absorption. The crossover wavelength is different for each type of melanin. In our analysis, we found that the mechanism by which iron modifies eumelanin's pump-probe response cannot be attributed to Raman resonances or differences in melanin aggregation and is more likely caused by iron acting to broaden the unit spectra of individual chromophores in the heterogeneous melanin aggregate. We analyze the dependence on optical intensity, finding that iron-loaded eumelanin undergoes irreversible changes to the pump-probe response after intense laser exposure. Simultaneously acquired fluorescence data suggest that the previously reported "activation" of eumelanin fluorescence may be caused in part by the dissociation of metal ions or the selective degradation of iron-containing melanin.

  12. Validation of Eupatorium triplinerve Vahl leaves, a skin care herb from East Kalimantan, using a melanin biosynthesis assay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arung, Enos Tangke; Kuspradini, Harlinda; Kusuma, Irawan Wijaya; Shimizu, Kuniyoshi; Kondo, Ryuichiro

    2012-04-01

    In searching for a new material made from natural resources that could be used as a whitening agent, we focused on the plants used for skin treatment by the native people of East Kalimantan. The methanol extract of the leaves of Eupatorium triplinerve Vahl showed antimelanogenesis activity in a melanin biosynthesis assay. By activity-guided fractionation, 7-methoxycoumarin (1) was isolated as an active compound. The IC50 of 1 on mushroom tyrosinase was 2360 μM (L-tyrosine was used as the substrate) and above 2840 μM (L-DOPA was used as the substrate), respectively. Regarding melanin formation inhibition in B16 melanoma cells, the IC50 of 1 was 1780 μM with 83% cell viability at IC50. Based on these results, we validated that the leaf extract is in line with the traditional use of the Dayak tribe in East Kalimantan.

  13. Melanin biosynthesis inhibitory and antioxidant activities of quercetin-3'-O-beta-D-glucoside isolated from Allium cepa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arung, Enos Tangke; Furuta, Shoko; Ishikawa, Hiroya; Tanaka, Hiroyuki; Shimizu, Kuniyoshi; Kondo, Ryuichiro

    2011-01-01

    In the course of searching for new whitening agents, we have found that the methanol extract of dried skin of Allium cepa shows potent melanin biosynthesis inhibitory activity in B16 melanoma cells. Bioassay-guided fractionation led to the isolation of quercetin-3'-O-beta-D-glucoside (1) from the methanol extract of dried skin of A. cepa, which inhibited melanin formation in B16 melanoma cells with an IC50 value of 38.8 microM and mushroom tyrosinase with an IC50 value of 6.5 microM using L-tyrosine and 48.5 microM using L-dihydroxyphenylalanine as substrates, respectively. In addition, the antioxidant activity of 1 was evaluated in the oxygen radical absorbance capacity assay; it showed 3.04 micromol Trolox equivalents/mmol. 1 was shown to be a promising ingredient that could be useful for treating hyperpigmentation and for protecting against oxidative stress.

  14. Melanin concentrating hormone and estrogen receptor-α are coexstensive but not coexpressed in cells of male rat hypothalamus

    OpenAIRE

    Muschamp, John W.; Hull, Elaine M.

    2007-01-01

    In male rats, estradiol (E2) exerts marked anorectic effects. One mechanism proposed for this effect is an E2-mediated down-regulation of the orexigenic neuropeptide melanin concentrating hormone (MCH). Previous anatomical work has shown that both MCH and estrogen receptor α (ERα) are found in quantity in the lateral hypothalamic area (LHA), a structure long associated with appetite and ingestive behavior. It has been hypothesized that the most direct manner by which E2 could affect MCH expre...

  15. A novel bioactive chalcone of Morus australis inhibits tyrosinase activity and melanin biosynthesis in B16 melanoma cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahashi, Makoto; Takara, Kensaku; Toyozato, Tomonao; Wada, Koji

    2012-01-01

    The methanol extract of Morus australis (shimaguwa) acts as a whitening agent due to the inhibition of tyrosinase activity. In order to explore the mechanism(s) of the whitening action, constituents of the 95% methanol extract from the dried stems of shimaguwa were isolated and their skin-whitening capacity was examined. Bioassay-guided fractionation of the methanol soluble extract of shimaguwa led to the isolation of 2, 4, 2', 4'-hydroxycalcone (chalcone 1) and three analogues of chalcone 1 with 3'-substituted resorcinol moieties (chalcones 2-4). Chalcone derivative 4 proved to be a novel compound and was fully characterized. Chalcones 1-4 were evaluated for inhibition activity on mushroom tyrosinase using L-tyrosine as the substrate. The parent chalcone 1 was a highly effective inhibitor of tyrosinase activity (IC₅₀ = 0.21 μM) compared to arbutin (IC₅₀ = 164 μM). Compared to chalcone 1, chalcones 2 and 3, which possess 3'-substituted isoprenyl or bulky 2-benzoylbiphenyl, showed significantly decreased tyrosinase activity, while chalcone 4, possessing 3'-substituted 2-hydroxy-1-pentene group, showed slightly increased activity.The effects of chalcones 1-4 on melanin synthesis, without affecting cell growth, were assayed in melanin-producing B16 murine melanoma cells. Chalcone 3 significantly reduced cell viability before reaching the IC₅₀ value for melanin synthesis. In contrast, the inhibitory effects of chalcones 1, 2 and 4 were more than 100-fold greater than that of arbutin, with little or no cytotoxicity. More significantly, chalcone 2, which exhibited less tyrosinase inhibitory activity compared to the parent chalcone 1, showed the highest inhibition of melanin synthesis in B16 cells among the chalcones tested. Accordingly, chalcones 1 and 2, and the novel chalcone 4 might be the active components responsible for the whitening ability of shimaguwa. Moreover, whitening ability was not exclusively due to tyrosinase inhibition.

  16. Nanoarchitecturing of Natural Melanin Nanospheres by Layer-by-Layer Assembly: Macroscale Anti-inflammatory Conductive Coatings with Optoelectronic Tunability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eom, Taesik; Woo, Kyungbae; Cho, Whirang; Heo, Jae Eun; Jang, Daseul; Shin, Jae In; Martin, David C; Wie, Jeong Jae; Shim, Bong Sup

    2017-06-12

    Natural melanins are biocompatible conductors with versatile functionalities. Here, we report fabrication of multifunctional poly(vinyl alcohol)/melanin nanocomposites by layer-by-layer (LBL) assembly using melanin nanoparticles (MNPs) directly extracted from sepia officinalis inks. The LBL assembly offers facile manipulation of nanotextures as well as nm-thickness control of the macroscale film by varying solvent qualities. The time-resolved absorption was monitored during the process and quantitatively studied by fractal dimension and lacunarity analysis. The capability of nanoarchitecturing provides confirmation of complete monolayer formation and leads to tunable iridescent reflective colors of the MNP films. In addition, the MNP films have durable electrochemical conductivities as evidenced by enhanced charge storage capacities for 1000 cycles. Moreover, the MNP covered ITO (indium tin oxide) substrates significantly reduced secretion of inflammatory cytokines, TNF-α, by raw 264.7 macrophage cells compared to bare ITO, by a factor of 5 and 1.8 with and without lipopolysaccharide endotoxins, respectively. These results highlight the optoelectronic device-level tunability along with the anti-inflammatory biocompatibility of the MNP LBL film. This combination of performance should make these films particularly interesting for bioelectronic device applications such as electroceuticals, artificial bionic organs, biosensors, and implantable devices.

  17. Sex-linked inheritance, genetic correlations and sexual dimorphism in three melanin-based colour traits in the barn owl.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roulin, A; Jensen, H

    2015-03-01

    Theory states that genes on the sex chromosomes have stronger effects on sexual dimorphism than genes on the autosomes. Although empirical data are not necessarily consistent with this theory, this situation may prevail because the relative role of sex-linked and autosomally inherited genes on sexual dimorphism has rarely been evaluated. We estimated the quantitative genetics of three sexually dimorphic melanin-based traits in the barn owl (Tyto alba), in which females are on average darker reddish pheomelanic and display more and larger black eumelanic feather spots than males. The plumage traits with higher sex-linked inheritance showed lower heritability and genetic correlations, but contrary to prediction, these traits showed less pronounced sexual dimorphism. Strong offspring sexual dimorphism primarily resulted from daughters not expressing malelike melanin-based traits and from sons expressing femalelike traits to similar degrees as their sisters. We conclude that in the barn owl, polymorphism at autosomal genes rather than at sex-linked genes generate variation in sexual dimorphism in melanin-based traits.

  18. Diversion of the melanin synthetic pathway by dopamine product scavengers: A quantum chemical modeling of the reaction mechanisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. B. Demissie

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available We report the stability and reactivity of the oxidation products as well as L-cysteine and N-acetylcysteine adducts of dopamine studied using quantum chemical calculations. The overall reactions studied were subdivided into four reaction channels. The first reaction channel is the oxidation of dopamine to form dopaminoquinone. The second reaction channel leads to melanin formation through subsequent reactions. The third and fourth reaction channels are reactions leading to the formation of dopaminoquinone adducts which are aimed to divert the synthesis of melanin. The results indicate that L-cysteine and N-acetylcysteine undergo chemical reactions mainly at C5 position of dopaminoquinone. The analyses of the thermodynamic energies indicate that L-cysteine and N-acetylcysteine covalently bind to dopaminoquinone by competing with the internal cyclization reaction of dopaminoquinone which leads to the synthesis of melanin. The analysis of the results, based on the reaction free energies, is also supported by the investigation of the natural bond orbitals of the reactants and products.

  19. Cladosporium cladosporioides LPSC 1088 produces the 1,8-dihydroxynaphthalene-melanin-like compound and carries a putative pks gene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llorente, Carla; Bárcena, Alejandra; Vera Bahima, José; Saparrat, Mario C N; Arambarri, Angélica M; Rozas, M Fernanda; Mirífico, María V; Balatti, Pedro A

    2012-12-01

    Cladosporium cladosporioides is a dematiaceous fungus with coloured mycelia and conidia due to the presence of dark pigments. The purpose of this study was to characterize the dark pigments synthetized by Cladosporium sp. LPSC no. 1088 and also to identify the putative polyketide synthase (pks) gene that might be involved in the pigment biosynthesis. Morphological as well as molecular features like the ITS sequence confirmed that LPSC 1088 is Cladosporium cladosporioides. UV-visible, Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) and Electron Spin Resonance (ESR) spectroscopy analysis as well as melanin inhibitors suggest that the main dark pigment of the isolate was 1,8 dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN)-melanin-type compound. Two commercial fungicides, Difenoconazole and Chlorothalonil, inhibited fungal growth as well as increased pigmentation of the colonies suggesting that melanin might protect the fungus against chemical stress. The pigment is most probably synthetized by means of a pentaketide pathway since the sequence of a 651 bp fragment, coding for a putative polyketide synthase, is highly homologous to pks sequences from other fungi.

  20. Uptake of 7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene and benzo(a)pyrene in melanin-containing tissues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Roberto, A.; Larsson, B.S. [Uppsala Univ., Dept. of Pharmaceutical Biosciences, Div. of Toxicology, Uppsala (Sweden); Tjaelve, H. [The Swedish Univ. of Agricultural Sciences, Dept. of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Uppsala (Sweden)

    1996-08-01

    It is widely accepted that UV exposure is the main etiological factor for malignant melanoma. Epidemiologic studies, however, have indicated that also chemical carcinogens may be a risk factor for the disease. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons such as 7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene and benzo(a)pyrene represent an important class of carcinogenic chemicals. It is known that 7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene can induce melanotic tumours in various animal species, and human melanocytes in culture have been found to be capable of metabolizing benzo(a)pyrene to its proximate carcinogen benzo(a)pyrene-7,8-diol. In the present study the disposition of {sup 14}C- and {sup 3}H-7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene and {sup 14}C-benzo(a)pyrene was studied in pigmented and albino mice and Syrian golden hamsters by whole-body autoradiography. The results showed pronounced retention of label in the melanin-containing structures of the eyes and the hair follicles in the pigmented animals. The labelling of the corresponding structures in the albino animals was low. Additional experiments showed that 7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene and benzo(a)pyrene as well as some of their metabolites are bound to melanin in vitro. The specific localization of the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in pigmented tissues due to melanin affinity, combined with bioactivating capacity of melanocytes, suggest that these substances may play a role in the induction of malignant melanoma. (au).

  1. Bleaching of melanin in the epidermis of South American fur seal and its application on enzyme immunohistochemistry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A.P. Silva

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available The South American fur seal (Arctocephalus australis is an amphibious marine mammal distributed along the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of South America. The species is well adjusted to different habitats due to the morphology of its fin-like members and due to some adaptations in their integumentary system. Immunohistochemical studies are very important to evaluate the mechanisms of skin adaptation due the differential expression of the antigens present in the tissue depending of the region of the body surface. However, its strongly pigmented (melanin epidermis prevents the visualization of the immuno-histochemical chromogens markers. In this study a melanin bleaching method was developed aimed to allow the visualization of the chromogens without interfering in the antigen-antibody affinity for immunohistochemistry. The analysis of PCNA (proliferating cell nuclear antigen index in the epidermis of A. australis by immunohistochemistry with diaminobenzidine (DAB as chromogen was used to test the method. The bleaching of the melanin allowed to obtain the cell proliferation index in epidermis and to avoid false positive results without affecting the immunohistochemical results.

  2. Control of heterogeneous nucleation and growth kinetics of dopamine-melanin by altering substrate chemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klosterman, Luke; Riley, John K; Bettinger, Christopher John

    2015-03-24

    Dopamine-melanin (DM or "polydopamine") can be deposited on virtually any substrate from solution through autoxidation of dopamine. The versatility of this process has allowed surface-mediated assembly of DM for a wide variety of functional coatings. Here we report the impact of well-defined surface chemistries on the nucleation and growth of such films. DM was deposited on silicon dioxide (SiO2) and SiO2 substrates modified with self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) bearing octadecyl (C18), phenethyl, and aminopropyl functional groups. Atomic force microscopy revealed three-dimensional islands whose areal density and surface coverage are lowest on bare SiO2 substrates and highest on the neutral aromatic and aliphatic substrates. Increasing the pH of the solution from 8.2 to 10 dissociates catechol moieties in DM and inhibits adsorption on negatively charged SiO2 substrates. The growth rate of DM films on SAM-modified SiO2 is maximized at pH 9.5 and almost completely abolished at pH 10 because of increased DM solubility. The initial rates of DM adsorption were measured using quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation measurements. The initial adsorption rate is proportional to the nucleation density, which increases as the hydrophobicity of the substrate increases. Taken together, these data provide insight into the rates of heterogeneous nucleation and growth of DM on substrates with well-defined chemistries.

  3. A role of melanin-concentrating hormone producing neurons in the central regulation of paradoxical sleep

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salin Paul

    2003-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Peptidergic neurons containing the melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH and the hypocretins (or orexins are intermingled in the zona incerta, perifornical nucleus and lateral hypothalamic area. Both types of neurons have been implicated in the integrated regulation of energy homeostasis and body weight. Hypocretin neurons have also been involved in sleep-wake regulation and narcolepsy. We therefore sought to determine whether hypocretin and MCH neurons express Fos in association with enhanced paradoxical sleep (PS or REM sleep during the rebound following PS deprivation. Next, we compared the effect of MCH and NaCl intracerebroventricular (ICV administrations on sleep stage quantities to further determine whether MCH neurons play an active role in PS regulation. Results Here we show that the MCH but not the hypocretin neurons are strongly active during PS, evidenced through combined hypocretin, MCH, and Fos immunostainings in three groups of rats (PS Control, PS Deprived and PS Recovery rats. Further, we show that ICV administration of MCH induces a dose-dependant increase in PS (up to 200% and slow wave sleep (up to 70% quantities. Conclusion These results indicate that MCH is a powerful hypnogenic factor. MCH neurons might play a key role in the state of PS via their widespread projections in the central nervous system.

  4. Safety and Efficacy of 188-Rhenium-Labeled Antibody to Melanin in Patients with Metastatic Melanoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Klein

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available There is a need for effective “broad spectrum” therapies for metastatic melanoma which would be suitable for all patients. The objectives of Phase Ia/Ib studies were to evaluate the safety, pharmacokinetics, dosimetry, and antitumor activity of 188Re-6D2, a 188-Rhenium-labeled antibody to melanin. Stage IIIC/IV metastatic melanoma (MM patients who failed standard therapies were enrolled in both studies. In Phase Ia, 10 mCi 188Re-6D2 were given while unlabeled antibody preload was escalated. In Phase Ib, the dose of 188Re-6D2 was escalated to 54 mCi. SPECT/CT revealed 188Re-6D2 uptake in melanoma metastases. The mean effective half-life of 188Re-6D2 was 12.4 h. Transient HAMA was observed in 9 patients. Six patients met the RECIST criteria for stable disease at 6 weeks. Two patients had durable disease stabilization for 14 weeks and one for 22 weeks. Median overall survival was 13 months with no dose-limiting toxicities. The data demonstrate that 188Re-6D2 was well tolerated, localized in melanoma metastases, and had antitumor activity, thus warranting its further investigation in patients with metastatic melanoma.

  5. Neurons Containing Orexin or Melanin Concentrating Hormone Reciprocally Regulate Wake and Sleep

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    Roda Rani eKonadhode

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available There is considerable amount of data on arousal neurons whereas there is a paucity of knowledge regarding neurons that make us fall asleep. Indeed, current network models of sleep-wake regulation list many arousal neuronal populations compared to only one sleep group located in the preoptic area. There are neurons outside the preoptic area that are active during sleep, but they have never been selectively manipulated. Indeed, none of the sleep-active neurons have been selectively stimulated. To close this knowledge gap we used optogenetics to selectively manipulate neurons containing melanin concentrating hormone (MCH. The MCH neurons are located in the posterior hypothalamus intermingled with the orexin arousal neurons. Our data indicated that optogenetic stimulation of MCH neurons in wildtype mice (J Neuroscience, 2013 robustly increased both non-REM and REM sleep. MCH neuron stimulation increased sleep during the animal’s normal active period, which is compelling evidence that stimulation of MCH neurons has a powerful effect in counteracting the strong arousal signal from all of the arousal neurons. The MCH neurons represent the only group of sleep-active neurons that when selectively stimulated induce sleep. From a translational perspective this is potentially useful in sleep disorders, such as insomnia, where sleep needs to be triggered against a strong arousal drive. Our studies indicate that the MCH neurons belong within an overall model of sleep-wake regulation.

  6. Melanin concentrating hormone induces hippocampal acetylcholine release via the medial septum in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Zhi-Hong; Fukuda, Satoru; Minakawa, Yoichi; Yasuda, Atsushi; Sakamoto, Hidetoshi; Sawamura, Shigehito; Takahashi, Hidenori; Ishii, Noriko

    2013-06-01

    Among various actions of melanin concentrating hormone (MCH), its memory function has been focused in animal studies. Although MCH neurons project to various areas in the brain, one main target site of MCH is hippocampal formation for memory consolidation. Recent immunohistochemical study shows that MCH neurons directly project to the hippocampal formation and may indirectly affect the hippocampus through the medial septum nucleus (MS). It has been reported that sleep is necessary for memory and that hippocampal acetylcholine (ACh) release is indispensable for memory consolidation. However, there is no report how MCH actually influences the hippocampal ACh effluxes in accordance with the sleep-wake cycle changes. Thus, we investigated the modulatory function of intracerebroventricular (icv) injection of MCH on the sleep-wake cycle and ACh release using microdialysis techniques. Icv injection of MCH significantly increased the rapid eye movement (REM) and non-REM episode time and the hippocampal, not cortical, ACh effluxes. There was a significant correlation between REM episode time and hippocampal ACh effluxes, but not between REM episode time and cortical ACh effluxes. Microinjection of MCH into the MS increased the hippocampal ACh effluxes with no influence on the REM episode time. It appears that the effect sites of icv MCH for prolongation of REM episode time may be other neuronal areas than the cholinergic neurons in the MS. We conclude that MCH actually increases the hippocampal ACh release at least in part through the MS in rats.

  7. Mechanisms relevant to the enhanced virulence of a dihydroxynaphthalene-melanin metabolically engineered entomopathogen.

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    Min-Nan Tseng

    Full Text Available The entomopathogenic fungus Metarhizium anisopliae MA05-169 is a transformant strain that has been metabolically engineered to express dihydroxynaphthalene-melanin biosynthesis genes. In contrast to the wild type strain, the transformant displays a greater resistance to environmental stress and a higher virulence toward target insect host. However, the underlying mechanisms for these characteristics remain unclear; hence experiments were initiated to explore the possible mechanism(s through physiological and molecular approaches. Although both transformant and wild type strains could infect and share the same insect host range, the former germinated faster and produced more appressoria than the latter, both in vivo and in vitro. The transformant showed a significantly shorter median lethal time (LT50 when infecting the diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella and the striped flea beetle (Phyllotreta striolata, than the wild type. Additionally, the transformant was more tolerant to reactive oxygen species (ROS, produced 40-fold more orthosporin and notably overexpressed the transcripts of the pathogenicity-relevant hydrolytic enzymes (chitinase, protease, and phospholipase genes in vivo. In contrast, appressorium turgor pressure and destruxin A content were slightly decreased compared to the wild type. The transformant's high anti-stress tolerance, its high virulence against five important insect pests (cowpea aphid Aphis craccivora, diamondback moth Pl. xylostella, striped flea beetle Ph. striolata, and silverleaf whitefly Bemisia argentifolii and its capacity to colonize the root system are key properties for its potential bio-control field application.

  8. Novel Neuroprotective Effects of Melanin-Concentrating Hormone in Parkinson's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Ji-Yeun; Kim, Seung-Nam; Yoo, Junsang; Jang, Jaehwan; Lee, Ahreum; Oh, Ju-Young; Kim, Hongwon; Oh, Seung Tack; Park, Seong-Uk; Kim, Jongpil; Park, Hi-Joon; Jeon, Songhee

    2016-11-14

    Acupuncture has shown the therapeutic effect on various neurodegenerative disorders including Parkinson's disease (PD). While investigating the neuroprotective mechanism of acupuncture, we firstly found the novel function of melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) as a potent neuroprotective candidate. Here, we explored whether hypothalamic MCH mediates the neuroprotective action of acupuncture. In addition, we aimed at evaluating the neuroprotective effects of MCH and elucidating underlying mechanism in vitro and in vivo PD models. First, we tested whether hypothalamic MCH mediates the neuroprotective effects of acupuncture by challenging MCH-R1 antagonist (i.p.) in mice PD model. We also investigated whether MCH has a beneficial role in dopaminergic neuronal protection in vitro primary midbrain and human neuronal cultures and in vivo MPTP-induced, Pitx3(-/-), and A53T mutant mice PD models. Transcriptomics followed by quantitative PCR and western blot analyses were performed to reveal the neuroprotective mechanism of MCH. We first found that hypothalamic MCH biosynthesis was directly activated by acupuncture treatment and that administration of an MCH-R1 antagonist reverses the neuroprotective effects of acupuncture. A novel finding is that MCH showed a beneficial role in dopaminergic neuron protection via downstream pathways related to neuronal survival. This is the first study to suggest the novel neuroprotective action of MCH as well as the involvement of hypothalamic MCH in the acupuncture effects in PD, which holds great promise for the application of MCH in the therapy of neurodegenerative diseases.

  9. Structure Characterization and Lead Detoxification Effect of Carboxymethylated Melanin Derived from Lachnum Sp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zong, Shuai; Li, Lan; Li, Jinglei; Shaikh, Farnaz; Yang, Liu; Ye, Ming

    2017-06-01

    In the present study, an intracellular melanin, named LIM205, was separated from Lachnum YM205 mycelia and was purified on a Sephadex G-15 column. The molecular weight of LIM205 was determined as 522 Da, and its molecular formula was speculated as C28H14N2O7S. The possible chemical structure of LIM205 was determined according to the results of Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR), (1)H NMR, (13)C NMR, and pyrolysis/GC-MS analysis. With the aim to increase its water solubility, its carboxymethylated derivative, named CLIM205, was formed by the substitution of hydrogen atoms in LIM205 with one, two, and three carboxymethylate groups. FT-IR, UV, and ESI-MS analysis demonstrated that the carboxymethylate groups were conjugated onto LIM205. The lead detoxification activities of LIM205 and CLIM205 had also been investigated. In vivo test showed that both LIM205 and CLIM205 reduced the tissue lead concentration, enhanced lead excretion, and reversed lead-induced alterations in superoxide dismutase (SOD), glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px), and malondialdehyde (MDA) concentrations in mice, with CLIM205 showed better efficacy. The study indicates that LIM205 and CLIM205 have significant lead detoxification effect which will contribute to solve related problems.

  10. HIV-Associated Oral Mucosal Melanin Hyperpigmentation: A Clinical Study in a South African Population Sample

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    R. Chandran

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective. The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence of HIV-associated oral mucosal melanin hyperpigmentation (HIV-OMH in a specific population of HIV-seropositive South Africans and to analyse the associations between HIV-OMH clinical features and the demographic and immunological characteristics of the study cohort. Material and Methods. This cross-sectional study included 200 HIV-seropositive Black subjects. The collected data comprised age, gender, CD4+ T cell count, viral load, systemic disease, medications, oral site affected by HIV-OMH, extent (localized or generalized, intensity of the pigmentation (dark or light, and smoking and snuff use. Results. Overall, 18.5% of the study cohort had HIV-OMH. Twenty-two and a half percent had OMH that could not with confidence be attributed to HIV infection, and 59% did not have any OMH. There was a significant but weak association between smoking and the presence of HIV-OMH. Conclusions. The prevalence of HIV-OMH in the study population was 18.5%, the gingiva being the most commonly affected site. It appears that the CD4+ T cell count does not play any role in the biopathology of HIV-OMH.

  11. Regulation of nucleus accumbens activity by the hypothalamic neuropeptide melanin-concentrating hormone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sears, Robert M; Liu, Rong-Jian; Narayanan, Nandakumar S; Sharf, Ruth; Yeckel, Mark F; Laubach, Mark; Aghajanian, George K; DiLeone, Ralph J

    2010-06-16

    The lateral hypothalamus and the nucleus accumbens shell (AcbSh) are brain regions important for food intake. The AcbSh contains high levels of receptor for melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH), a lateral hypothalamic peptide critical for feeding and metabolism. MCH receptor (MCHR1) activation in the AcbSh increases food intake, while AcbSh MCHR1 blockade reduces feeding. Here biochemical and cellular mechanisms of MCH action in the rodent AcbSh are described. A reduction of phosphorylation of GluR1 at serine 845 (pSer(845)) is shown to occur after both pharmacological and genetic manipulations of MCHR1 activity. These changes depend upon signaling through G(i/o), and result in decreased surface expression of GluR1-containing AMPA receptors (AMPARs). Electrophysiological analysis of medium spiny neurons (MSNs) in the AcbSh revealed decreased amplitude of AMPAR-mediated synaptic events (mEPSCs) with MCH treatment. In addition, MCH suppressed action potential firing MSNs through K(+) channel activation. Finally, in vivo recordings confirmed that MCH reduces neuronal cell firing in the AcbSh in freely moving animals. The ability of MCH to reduce cell firing in the AcbSh is consistent with a general model from other pharmacological and electrophysiological studies whereby reduced AcbSh neuronal firing leads to food intake. The current work integrates the hypothalamus into this model, providing biochemical and cellular mechanisms whereby metabolic and limbic signals converge to regulate food intake.

  12. High-throughput screening of novel antagonists on melanin-concentrat-ing hormone receptor-1

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jian-hua YAN; Qun-yi LI; Jean A BOUTIN; M Pierre RENARD; Yi-xiang DING; Xiao-jiang HAO; Wei-min ZHAO; Ming-wei WANG

    2008-01-01

    Aim: To find new antagonists on human melanin-concentrating hormone recep-tor- 1 (MCHR-1) through high-throughput screening (HTS) of a diverse com-pound library. Methods: MCHR-1, [3H]SNAP7941, and FlashBlue G-protein-coupled receptor beads were used to measure the receptor-binding activities of various compounds based on scintillation proximity assay (SPA) technology. The guanosine 5' (γ-[35S]thio) triphosphate ([35S]GTPγS) binding assay was sub-sequently applied to functionally characterize the "hits" identified by the HTS campaign. Results: Of the 48 240 compounds screened with the SPA method, 12 hits were confirmed to possess MCHR-1 binding activities, 8 were function-ally studied subsequently with the [35S]GTPγS binding assay, and only 1 com-pound (NC 127816) displayed moderate human MCHR- 1 binding affinity (Ki=115.7 nmol/L) and relatively potent antagonism (KB=23.8 nmol/L). This compound shares a novel scaffold (1-ethoxy-2H-2-aza-1-phospha-naphthalene 1-oxide) with 3 other analogs in the group. Conclusion: Considering the marked difference in molecular shape and electrostatic status between NC127816 and the structures reported elsewhere, we anticipate that its derivatives may repre-sent a new class of potent MCHR-1 modulators.

  13. Targeted Disruption of Melanin Biosynthesis Genes in the Human Pathogenic Fungus Lomentospora prolificans and Its Consequences for Pathogen Survival

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    Ayat Al-Laaeiby

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The dematiaceous (melanised fungus Lomentospora (Scedosporium prolificans is a life-threatening opportunistic pathogen of immunocompromised humans, resistant to anti-fungal drugs. Melanin has been shown to protect human pathogenic fungi against antifungal drugs, oxidative killing and environmental stresses. To determine the protective role of melanin in L. prolificans to oxidative killing (H2O2, UV radiation and the polyene anti-fungal drug amphotericin B, targeted gene disruption was used to generate mutants of the pathogen lacking the dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN-melanin biosynthetic enzymes polyketide synthase (PKS1, tetrahydroxynapthalene reductase (4HNR and scytalone dehydratase (SCD1. Infectious propagules (spores of the wild-type strain 3.1 were black/brown, whereas spores of the PKS-deficient mutant ΔLppks1::hph were white. Complementation of the albino mutant ΔLppks1::hph restored the black-brown spore pigmentation, while the 4HNR-deficient mutant ΔLp4hnr::hph and SCD-deficient mutant ΔLpscd1::hph both produced orange-yellow spores. The mutants ΔLppks1::hph and ΔLp4hnr::hph showed significant reductions in spore survival following H2O2 treatment, while spores of ΔLpscd1::hph and the ΔLppks1::hph complemented strain ΔLppks1::hph:PKS showed spore survivals similar to strain 3.1. Spores of the mutants ΔLp4hnr::hph and ΔLpscd1::hph and complemented strain ΔLppks1::hph:PKS showed spore survivals similar to 3.1 following exposure to UV radiation, but survival of ΔLppks1::hph spores was significantly reduced compared to the wild-type strain. Strain 3.1 and mutants ΔLp4hnr::hph and ΔLppks1::hph:PKS were resistant to amphotericin B while, paradoxically, the PKS1- and SCD1-deficient mutants showed significant increases in growth in the presence of the antifungal drug. Taken together, these results show that while melanin plays a protective role in the survival of the pathogen to oxidative killing and UV radiation, melanin does not

  14. Targeted Disruption of Melanin Biosynthesis Genes in the Human Pathogenic Fungus Lomentospora prolificans and Its Consequences for Pathogen Survival.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Laaeiby, Ayat; Kershaw, Michael J; Penn, Tina J; Thornton, Christopher R

    2016-03-24

    The dematiaceous (melanised) fungus Lomentospora (Scedosporium) prolificans is a life-threatening opportunistic pathogen of immunocompromised humans, resistant to anti-fungal drugs. Melanin has been shown to protect human pathogenic fungi against antifungal drugs, oxidative killing and environmental stresses. To determine the protective role of melanin in L. prolificans to oxidative killing (H₂O₂), UV radiation and the polyene anti-fungal drug amphotericin B, targeted gene disruption was used to generate mutants of the pathogen lacking the dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN)-melanin biosynthetic enzymes polyketide synthase (PKS1), tetrahydroxynapthalene reductase (4HNR) and scytalone dehydratase (SCD1). Infectious propagules (spores) of the wild-type strain 3.1 were black/brown, whereas spores of the PKS-deficient mutant ΔLppks1::hph were white. Complementation of the albino mutant ΔLppks1::hph restored the black-brown spore pigmentation, while the 4HNR-deficient mutant ΔLp4hnr::hph and SCD-deficient mutant ΔLpscd1::hph both produced orange-yellow spores. The mutants ΔLppks1::hph and ΔLp4hnr::hph showed significant reductions in spore survival following H₂O₂ treatment, while spores of ΔLpscd1::hph and the ΔLppks1::hph complemented strain ΔLppks1::hph:PKS showed spore survivals similar to strain 3.1. Spores of the mutants ΔLp4hnr::hph and ΔLpscd1::hph and complemented strain ΔLppks1::hph:PKS showed spore survivals similar to 3.1 following exposure to UV radiation, but survival of ΔLppks1::hph spores was significantly reduced compared to the wild-type strain. Strain 3.1 and mutants ΔLp4hnr::hph and ΔLppks1::hph:PKS were resistant to amphotericin B while, paradoxically, the PKS1- and SCD1-deficient mutants showed significant increases in growth in the presence of the antifungal drug. Taken together, these results show that while melanin plays a protective role in the survival of the pathogen to oxidative killing and UV radiation, melanin does not

  15. Novel point mutations and mutational complexes in the enhancer II, core promoter and precore regions of hepatitis B virus genotype D1 associated with hepatocellular carcinoma in Saudi Arabia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Anis; Al Balwi, Mohammed A; Tanaka, Yasuhito; Hajeer, Ali; Sanai, Faisal M; Al Abdulkarim, Ibrahim; Al Ayyar, Latifah; Badri, Motasim; Saudi, Dib; Tamimi, Waleed; Mizokami, Masashi; Al Knawy, Bandar

    2013-12-15

    In this study, a cohort of 182 patients [55 hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and 127 non-HCC] infected with hepatitis B virus (HBV) in Saudi Arabia was investigated to study the relationship between sequence variation in the enhancer II (EnhII), basal core promoter (BCP) and precore regions of HBV genotype D (HBV/D) and the risk of HCC. HBV genotypes were determined by sequencing analysis and/or enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Variations in the EnhII, BCP and precore regions were compared between 107 non-HCC and 45 HCC patients infected with HBV/D, followed by age-matched analysis of 40 cases versus equal number of controls. Age and male gender were significantly associated with HCC (p = 0.0001 and p = 0.03, respectively). Serological markers such as aspartate aminotransferase, albumin and anti-HBe were significantly associated with HCC (p = 0.0001 for all), whereas HBeAg positivity was associated with non-HCC (p = 0.0001). The most prevalent HBV genotype was HBV/D (94%), followed by HBV/E (4%), HBV/A (1.6%) and HBV/C (0.5%). For HBV/D1, genomic mutations associated with HCC were T1673/G1679, G1727, C1741, C1761, A1757/T1764/G1766, T1773, T1773/G1775 and C1909. Age- and gender-adjusted stepwise logistic regression analysis indicated that mutations G1727 [odds ratio (OR) = 18.3; 95% confidence interval (CI) = 2.8-118.4; p = 0.002], A1757/T1764/G1766 (OR = 4.7; 95% CI = 1.3-17.2; p = 0.01) and T1773 (OR = 14.06; 95% CI = 2.3-84.8; p = 0.004) are independent predictors of HCC development. These results implicate novel individual and combination patterns of mutations in the X/precore region of HBV/D1 as predictors of HCC. Risk stratification based on these mutation complexes would be useful in determining high-risk patients and improving diagnostic and treatment strategies for HBV/D1.

  16. 高粱黑粉菌黑色素生成机理及其功能研究%Melanin Formation Mechanism and Function Discussion of Sphacelotheca Reiliana

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    石太渊; 于淼; 鲁明; 高雅

    2013-01-01

    Sphacelotheca reiliana melanin is indoles macromolecular polymer and it belongs to eumelanin. It consists of the intermediate-product from indole and tyrosine oxidation. In the process of melanin biosynthesis, in addition to tyrosinase, dopachrome isomerase and DHICA oxidase also involved in the metabolism of melanin. The comprehensive effect of these three enzymes determines the biosynthesis of eumelanin. This paper mainly expounds from the structure, function, mechanism and prospects of the sphacelotheca reiliana melanin and provide a theoretical basis for the sphacelotheca reiliana melanin development.%高粱黑粉菌黑色素属于真黑色素类,是吲哚类大分子聚合体,由吲哚和酪氨酸氧化而来的中间产物构成。在黑色素的生物合成步骤中,除了酪氨酸酶,还有多巴色素异构酶和DHICA氧化酶参与黑色素代谢,这3种酶的综合作用决定了真黑色素的生物合成。主要从高粱黑粉菌黑色素的结构、功能、作用机理和前景等方面进行阐述,为高粱黑粉菌黑色素开发提供理论依据。

  17. Impact of Solvent pH on Direct Immobilization of Lysosome-Related Cell Organelle Extracts on TiO₂ for Melanin Treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bang, Seung Hyuck; Kim, Pil; Oh, Suk-Jung; Kim, Yang-Hoon; Min, Jiho

    2015-05-01

    Techniques for immobilizing effective enzymes on nanoparticles for stabilization of the activity of free enzymes have been developing as a pharmaceutical field. In this study, we examined the effect of three different pH conditions of phosphate buffer, as a dissolving solvent for lysosomal enzymes, on the direct immobilization of lysosomal enzymes extracted from Hen's egg white and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Titanium(IV) oxide (TiO2) nanoparticles, which are extensively used in many research fields, were used in this study. The lysosomal enzymes immobilized on TiO2 under each pH condition were evaluated to maintain the specific activity of lysosomal enzymes, so that we can determine the degree of melanin treatment in lysosomal enzymes immobilized on TiO2. We found that the immobilization efficiency and melanin treatment activity in both lysosomal enzymes extracted from Hen's egg white and S. cerevisiae were the highest in an acidic condition of phosphate buffer (pH 4). However, the immobilization efficiency and melanin treatment activity were inversely proportional to the increase in pH under alkaline conditions. In addition, enhanced immobilization efficiency was shown in TiO2 pretreated with a divalent, positively charged ion, Ca(2+), and the melanin treatment activity of immobilized lysosomal enzymes on TiO2 pretreated with Ca(2+) was also increased. Therefore, this result suggests that the immobilization efficiency and melanin treatment activity of lysosomal enzymes can be enhanced according to the pH conditions of the dissolving solvent.

  18. Intestinal upregulation of melanin-concentrating hormone in TNBS-induced enterocolitis in adult zebrafish.

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    Brenda M Geiger

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH, an evolutionarily conserved appetite-regulating neuropeptide, has been recently implicated in the pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD. Expression of MCH is upregulated in inflamed intestinal mucosa in humans with colitis and MCH-deficient mice treated with trinitrobenzene-sulfonic acid (TNBS develop an attenuated form of colitis compared to wild type animals. Zebrafish have emerged as a new animal model of IBD, although the majority of the reported studies concern zebrafish larvae. Regulation MCH expression in the adult zebrafish intestine remains unknown. METHODS: In the present study we induced enterocolitis in adult zebrafish by intrarectal administration of TNBS. Follow-up included survival analysis, histological assessment of changes in intestinal architecture, and assessment of intestinal infiltration by myeloperoxidase positive cells and cytokine transcript levels. RESULTS: Treatment with TNBS dose-dependently reduced fish survival. This response required the presence of an intact microbiome, since fish pre-treated with vancomycin developed less severe enterocolitis. At 6 hours post-challenge, we detected a significant influx of myeloperoxidase positive cells in the intestine and upregulation of both proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines. Most importantly, and in analogy to human IBD and TNBS-induced mouse experimental colitis, we found increased intestinal expression of MCH and its receptor in TNBS-treated zebrafish. CONCLUSIONS: Taken together these findings not only establish a model of chemically-induced experimental enterocolitis in adult zebrafish, but point to effects of MCH in intestinal inflammation that are conserved across species.

  19. Statistical approach, Sensory analysis, brief application of Bioinformatics Tool, Melanin, Allicin and Glucosinolate presence in Mango pulp for Pharmacological Benefits

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    Saranya Chitturi

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Information on important flavor components for fruit and vegetables is lacking and would be useful for breeders and molecular biologists . In this study five acid treatments, were formulated and the effects of Citric Acid (CA and Malic Acid (MA levels on canned mango pulp (Mangifera indica L. flavor perception was evaluated . Depiction of pulp components was executed in the Rasmol V 2 7.1 visualizing pectin, melanin and allinase compounds as a part of brief bioformatic analysis of the pulp. Melanin content, allicin and glucosinolate’s presence were assessed and their % concentration variations against different treatments was depicted . As we correlated the values of TSS and pH by different statistical analysis methods like Pearson’s correlation coefficient, Spearman’s and Regression plots by a statistical software we found that these two variables are positively correlated to each other. We have the alternate hypothesis H1 with p value < 0.05 being accepted for the sensory quality estimation based on Larmond’s 9-point hedonic scale sensory evaluation. The lowest levels of allicin was found in T2 about 0.14% where as the highest was noted to be about 4.28% in T3. The T5 treatment showed low concentration of melanin about 3.98% and the highest was about 9.43% in T4.The glucosinolate concentrations also varied according to the treatment administered. Low level of about 3.34% in T3 and about 7.9% concentration was observed in T4 . All these findings can further invariably help in extending the shelf life and increasing the marketability of the mango based products

  20. Oxidative stress regulated heme-oxygenase-1 and glutathione S-transferase-m1 gene expression changes in cell lines exposed to melanins

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jie Li; Peng Zhao; Junfeng Yang; Renyun Zhang; Shen Li; Dan Liu

    2011-01-01

    To investigate the effects of oxidative stress on substantia nigra neuronal degeneration and death in patients with Parkinson's disease, we treated neuroblastoma cells (SK-N-SH) and glioma cells with Fenton's reagent, iron chelating agent, neuromelanin and dopamine melanin. We investigated the changes in expression of nine oxidative stress-related genes and proteins. The levels of mRNAs for heme-oxygenase-1 and glutathione S-transferase-m1 were significantly reduced in SK-N-SH cells exposed to oxidative stress, and increased in glial cells treated with deferoxamine. These results revealed that SK-N-SH neurons react sensitively to oxidative stress, which implies different outcomes between these two types of cells in the substantia nigra. Moreover, the influences of neuromelanin and dopamine melanin on cell function are varied, and dopamine melanin is not a good model for neuromelanin.

  1. Alisol B, a triterpene from Alismatis rhizoma (dried rhizome of Alisma orientale), inhibits melanin production in murine B16 melanoma cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshida, Ichiro; Ito, Chihiro; Matsuda, Shinya; Tsuji, Akihiko; Yanaka, Noriyuki; Yuasa, Keizo

    2017-03-01

    To develop new whitening agents from natural products, we screened 80 compounds derived from crude drugs in Kampo medicine in a melanin synthesis inhibition assay using murine B16 melanoma cells. The screen revealed that treatment with alisol B, a triterpene from Alismatis rhizoma, significantly decreased both melanin content and cellular tyrosinase activity in B16 cells. However, alisol B did not directly inhibit mushroom tyrosinase activity in vitro. Therefore, we investigated the mechanism underlying the inhibitory effect of alisol B on melanogenesis. Alisol B suppressed mRNA induction of tyrosinase and its transcription factor, microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF). Furthermore, alisol B reduced the phosphorylation of CREB and maintained the activation of ERK1/2. These results suggest that the reduction in melanin production by alisol B is due to the downregulation of MITF through the suppression of CREB and activation of ERK and that alisol B may be useful as a new whitening agent.

  2. Effects of ultraviolet-visible irradiation in the presence of melanin isolated from human black or red hair upon Ehrlich ascites carcinoma cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Menon, I.A.; Persad, S.; Ranadive, N.S.; Haberman, H.F.

    1983-07-01

    The present study is an attempt to investigate the possibility that ultraviolet irradiation in the presence of pheomelanin may be more harmful to cells than the irradiation in the presence of eumelanin. The effects of UV-visible irradiation upon Ehrlich ascites carcinoma cells in the presence of the melanin isolated from human black hair (eumelanin) or from red hair (pheomelanin) were investigated. Irradiation of these cells was found to produce cell lysis, as observed by leakage of 51Cr from labeled cells and intracellular lactic dehydrogenase from the cells and decrease in cell viability demonstrated by the trypan blue exclusion test. The three parameters were quantitatively parallel to one another under various experimental conditions, namely different periods of irradiation and irradiation in the presence of different concentrations of melanin. The above effects were more pronounced when the irradiation was carried out in the presence of melanin from red hair than in the presence of black-hair melanin. In the absence of either melanin, the irradiation did not produce any significant effect in cell viability or cell lysis. Irradiation of the cells in the presence of red-hair melanin also decreased the transplantability of these cells. These observations clearly show that irradiation of cells in the presence of pheomelanin could produce cytotoxic effects. The present experimental design may have application in the development of in vitro models for the study of UV radiation-induced cutaneous carcinogenesis. The reactions of pheomelanin may be related to the susceptibility of ''Celtic'' skin to UV radiation-induced skin damage and carcinogenesis.

  3. 维A酸在细胞和基因水平调控黑素表达的研究%Regulation of melanin expression in both cell and gene by retinoic acid

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    刘全忠; 籍晓明; 张秉新; 侯淑萍; 亓玉青; 金洪喜

    2009-01-01

    Objective To investigate the effects and mechanism of retinoie acid on B16 marina mel-anoma cells and human melanocytes in vitro. Methods B16F10 murine melanoma cells and human mela-noeytes were cultured in culture medium which contains different concentration of components, including retinoic acid. Using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) mRNA expression of the tyrosinase was detected. Tyrosinase activity, melanin content and cell proliferation rate were also deter-mined. Results Retinoieacid exhibited an inhibitory effect on the expression of tyrosinase mRNA. As the concentration of retinoic acid was 100 μmol/L, treating for 72 h, the expression of tyrosinase mRNA de-creased 30.13 %, retinoic acid exhibited an inhibitory effect on tyrosinase activity and melanin production at high concentration (>500 μmol/L), and it could promote the cell proliferation. Retinoic acid and hy-droqninone could be cooperative at high concentration (1 000 μmol/L), and enhanced the down regulation of tyrosinase activity and melanin content. Retinoic acid could also mitigate the inhibitory effect of hydro-quinone on cell proliferation, so as to protect the cells from injury. Hydroquinone had no effect on tyrosi-nase gene expression at mRNA level. Conclusion Retinoic acid inhibits the synthesis of melanin by the genetic regulation at mRNA level.%目的 探讨维A酸治疗皮肤色斑的作用机制.方法 应用不同浓度的维A酸作用于B16F10黑素瘤细胞及正常人黑素细胞,观察肘酪氨酸酶mRNA的表达、酪氨酸酶活性、黑素含量及黑素细胞增殖率的影响.结果 维A酸的作用浓度为100μmol/L时,黑素细胞酪氨酸酶mRNA表达下调均值为30.13%;当浓度为500μmol/L以上时,可使酪氨酸酶活性降低82.79%,并随着浓度的增加作用越明显;而对黑素含量的降低则需要更高的浓度(1 000μmol/L);同时,还有促进黑素细胞增殖的作用.对照组氧醌对酪氰酸酶mRNA的表达无明显影

  4. Ultrastructure and Antioxidative Activity of Melanin from Cuttlefish%乌贼墨黑色素的超微结构及抗氧化活性研究

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李和生; 李晓; 董亚辉; 雷静; 孙楠楠; 张丽媛

    2012-01-01

    应用电镜技术和体外培养试验等研究乌贼墨黑色素超微结构及其抗氧化等特性.结果表明,乌贼墨黑色素是由黑色素单体堆积而成,其单体颗粒呈圆形,表面清晰光滑,平均直径约118 nm.乌贼墨黑色素对大肠杆菌有较好的光保护效果.随着黑色素浓度的增加,其光保护作用增强.黑色素可有效抑制猪油的氧化反应.在乌贼墨黑色素同一添加量水平下,POV值均随着时间的延长而增大;在一定时间条件下,乌贼墨添加量越大,POV值越小,表明乌贼墨黑色素具有较强的抗氧化能力.黑色素对大鼠自发性脂质过氧化有明显的抑制作用,其抑制率达到53.3%.同时,黑色素对Fe2+-Cys诱导大鼠肝脂质过氧化也有较明显的抑制作用,其抑制率达到22.5%.%The ultrastruclure and antioxidation of melanin from cuttlefish were dealt with electron microscope technology and incubation in Vitro. The results were showed that the cuttlefish melanin was consisted hy the accumulation of the melanin monomers. The shape of monomer grain with mean diameter of about 0.118 μm was round, clear and smooth. The photoprotective effect of cuttlefish melanin to E. Coli was better and was increased with the melanin concentration. The oxidation of lard can be efficiently restrained by the cuttlefish melanin. POV (peroxide value) increased with time in the same addition of the cuttlefish melanin, but decreased with the addition in the same time. Those showed that the cuttlefish melanin had stronger, antioxidation ability. The restriction of endogenous LPO(lipid peroxidation) to rat liver homogenate was obvious and its inhibitory rate could reach to be 53.3%. Meanwhile, the restriction of Fe2+-Cys-induced LPO was also obvious and the inhibitory rate reached 22.5%.

  5. EPR Studies of DOPA–Melanin Complexes with Netilmicin and Cu(II) at Temperatures in the Range of 105–300 K

    OpenAIRE

    Zdybel, Magdalena; Pilawa, Barbara; Buszman, Ewa; Wrześniok, Dorota; Krzyminiewski, Ryszard; Kruczyński, Zdzisław

    2012-01-01

    The application of electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy in pharmacy of melanin complexes with netilmicin and Cu(II) was presented. The continuous microwave saturation of EPR spectra of DOPA–melanin and the complexes was performed. EPR spectra were measured on an X-band (9.3 GHz) spectrometer at temperatures in the range of 105–300 K. Paramagnetic copper ions decrease the intensity of the EPR lines of melanin’s free radicals. It was found that fast spin–lattice relaxation charact...

  6. Dual-core antiresonant hollow core fibers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xuesong; Fan, Zhongwei; Shi, Zhaohui; Ma, Yunfeng; Yu, Jin; Zhang, Jing

    2016-07-25

    In this work, dual-core antiresonant hollow core fibers (AR-HCFs) are numerically demonstrated, based on our knowledge, for the first time. Two fiber structures are proposed. One is a composite of two single-core nested nodeless AR-HCFs, exhibiting low confinement loss and a circular mode profile in each core. The other has a relatively simple structure, with a whole elliptical outer jacket, presenting a uniform and wide transmission band. The modal couplings of the dual-core AR-HCFs rely on a unique mechanism that transfers power through the air. The core separation and the gap between the two cores influence the modal coupling strength. With proper designs, both of the dual-core fibers can have low phase birefringence and short modal coupling lengths of several centimeters.

  7. Using health promotion competencies for curriculum development in higher education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madsen, Wendy; Bell, Tanya

    2012-03-01

    Health promotion core competencies are used for a variety of reasons. Recently there have been moves to gain international consensus regarding core competencies within health promotion. One of the main reasons put forward for having core competencies is to guide curriculum development within higher education institutions. This article outlines the endeavours of one institution to develop undergraduate and postgraduate curricula around the Australian core competencies for health promotion practitioners. It argues that until core competencies have been agreed upon internationally, basing curricula on these carries a risk associated with change. However, delaying curricula until such risks are ameliorated decreases opportunities to deliver dynamic and current health promotion education within higher institutions.

  8. Haste makes waste: accelerated molt adversely affects the expression of melanin-based and depigmented plumage ornaments in house sparrows.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Csongor I Vágási

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Many animals display colorful signals in their integument which convey information about the quality of their bearer. Theoretically, these ornaments incur differential production and/or maintenance costs that enforce their honesty. However, the proximate mechanisms of production costs are poorly understood and contentious in cases of non-carotenoid-based plumage ornaments like the melanin-based badge and depigmented white wing-bar in house sparrows Passer domesticus. Costly life-history events are adaptively separated in time, thus, when reproduction is extended, the time available for molt is curtailed and, in turn, molt rate is accelerated. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We experimentally accelerated the molt rate by shortening the photoperiod in order to test whether this environmental constraint is mirrored in the expression of plumage ornaments. Sparrows which had undergone an accelerated molt developed smaller badges and less bright wing-bars compared to conspecifics that molted at a natural rate being held at natural-like photoperiod. There was no difference in the brightness of the badge or the size of the wing-bar. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These results indicate that the time available for molt and thus the rate at which molt occurs may constrain the expression of melanin-based and depigmented plumage advertisements. This mechanism may lead to the evolution of honest signaling if the onset of molt is condition-dependent through the timing of and/or trade-off between breeding and molt.

  9. Effects of Danshensu and Salvianolic Acid B from Salvia miltiorrhiza Bunge (Lamiaceae) on cell proliferation and collagen and melanin production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yi-Shyan; Lee, Shu-Mei; Lin, Ying-Ju; Chiang, Shu-Hua; Lin, Chih-Chien

    2014-02-13

    Danshensu (DSU) and salvianolic acid B (SAB) are the primary water-soluble compounds of Salvia miltiorrhiza Bunge (Lamiaceae). In this study, we analyzed the effects of DSU, SAB and a S. miltiorrhiza extract (SME) on cell proliferation. Additionally, the effects of DSU and SAB on collagen synthesis in Detroit 551 human normal fibroblast cells and on melanin production in B16 melanoma cells were verified. The results demonstrated that SME can enhance the proliferation of Detroit 551 cells and that this boost may be caused by DSU and SAB. This research showed that SME, DSU and SAB all have the ability to increase the production of collagen in Detroit 551 cells. The results also confirmed that DSU and SAB can attenuate the α-MSH-stimulated melanin production of B16 cells by inhibiting tyrosinase activity. Therefore, SME, DSU and SAB each have the potential to be utilized as active ingredients in wound healing or cosmetic treatments. In the future, DSU and SAB could also be used as functional components for treating hyperpigmentation.

  10. Effects of Danshensu and Salvianolic Acid B from Salvia miltiorrhiza Bunge (Lamiaceae on Cell Proliferation and Collagen and Melanin Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi-Shyan Chen

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Danshensu (DSU and salvianolic acid B (SAB are the primary water-soluble compounds of Salvia miltiorrhiza Bunge (Lamiaceae. In this study, we analyzed the effects of DSU, SAB and a S. miltiorrhiza extract (SME on cell proliferation. Additionally, the effects of DSU and SAB on collagen synthesis in Detroit 551 human normal fibroblast cells and on melanin production in B16 melanoma cells were verified. The results demonstrated that SME can enhance the proliferation of Detroit 551 cells and that this boost may be caused by DSU and SAB. This research showed that SME, DSU and SAB all have the ability to increase the production of collagen in Detroit 551 cells. The results also confirmed that DSU and SAB can attenuate the α-MSH-stimulated melanin production of B16 cells by inhibiting tyrosinase activity. Therefore, SME, DSU and SAB each have the potential to be utilized as active ingredients in wound healing or cosmetic treatments. In the future, DSU and SAB could also be used as functional components for treating hyperpigmentation.

  11. Retroperitoneal sclerosing PEComa with melanin pigmentation and granulomatous inflammation-A rare association within an uncommon tumor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bharat Rekhi

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available PEComa, defined as a perivascular epithelioid cell tumor, displays a wide clinicopathological spectrum. Lately, a sclerosing PEComa has been identified as its distinct variant, but with limited documentation, in view of its rarity. Herein, we describe an uncommon case of a 53-year-old lady, who was referred to us with pain abdomen. Radiological imaging disclosed a well-defined, hypodense retroperitoneal mass. The excised tumor was a round, encapsulated soft tissue mass measuring 7 cm with a tan-brown cut surface. Microscopy showed uniform, epithelioid cells with clear cytoplasm, focal melanin pigmentation and mild nuclear atypia, arranged in sheets and nests around capillary-sized vessels in a dense sclerotic stroma. Additionally, co-existing epithelioid granulomas were noted. On immunohistochemistry (IHC, tumor cells were diffusely positive for HMB45; focally for desmin and smooth muscle actin (SMA, while negative for EMA, CD10, S100-P, Melan A, CD34, AMACR and CK MNF116. This case reinforces sclerosing PEComa as an uncommon, but a distinct clinicopathological entity and exemplifies diagnostic challenge associated with it; necessitating application of IHC markers for its correct identification. Presence of melanin pigment and granulomatous inflammation in the present tumor constitute as novel histopathological findings in a sclerosing PEComa.

  12. Identification and molecular characterization of the homogentisate pathway responsible for pyomelanin production, the major melanin constituents in Aeromonas media WS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, He; Qiao, Yunqian; Chai, Baozhong; Qiu, Chenxi; Chen, Xiangdong

    2015-01-01

    The pigmentation of many Aeromonas species has been thought to be due to the production of a L-DOPA (L-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine) based melanin. However, in this study we found that although L-DOPA synthesis occurs in the high-melanin-yielding Aeromonas media strain WS, it plays a minor, if any, role in pigmentation. Instead, the pigmentation of A. media strain WS is due to the production of pyomelanin through HGA (homogentisate). Gene products of phhA (encodes phenylalanine hydroxylase), tyrB and aspC (both encode aromatic amino acid aminotransferase), and hppD (encodes 4-hydroxyphenylpyruvate dioxygenase) constitute a linear pathway of converting phenylalanine to HGA and disruption of any one of these genes impairs or blocks pigmentation of A. media strain WS. This HGA biosynthesis pathway is widely distributed in Aeromonas, but HGA is only detectable in the cultures of pigmented Aeromonas species. Heterologous expression of HppD from both pigmented and non-pigmented Aeromonas species in E. coli leads to the production of pyomelanin and thus pigmentation, suggesting that most Aeromonas species have the critical enzymes to produce pyomelanin through HGA. Taken together, we have identified a widely conserved biosynthesis pathway of HGA based pyomelanin in Aeromonas that may be responsible for pigmentation of many Aeromonas species.

  13. Identification and molecular characterization of the homogentisate pathway responsible for pyomelanin production, the major melanin constituents in Aeromonas media WS.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    He Wang

    Full Text Available The pigmentation of many Aeromonas species has been thought to be due to the production of a L-DOPA (L-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine based melanin. However, in this study we found that although L-DOPA synthesis occurs in the high-melanin-yielding Aeromonas media strain WS, it plays a minor, if any, role in pigmentation. Instead, the pigmentation of A. media strain WS is due to the production of pyomelanin through HGA (homogentisate. Gene products of phhA (encodes phenylalanine hydroxylase, tyrB and aspC (both encode aromatic amino acid aminotransferase, and hppD (encodes 4-hydroxyphenylpyruvate dioxygenase constitute a linear pathway of converting phenylalanine to HGA and disruption of any one of these genes impairs or blocks pigmentation of A. media strain WS. This HGA biosynthesis pathway is widely distributed in Aeromonas, but HGA is only detectable in the cultures of pigmented Aeromonas species. Heterologous expression of HppD from both pigmented and non-pigmented Aeromonas species in E. coli leads to the production of pyomelanin and thus pigmentation, suggesting that most Aeromonas species have the critical enzymes to produce pyomelanin through HGA. Taken together, we have identified a widely conserved biosynthesis pathway of HGA based pyomelanin in Aeromonas that may be responsible for pigmentation of many Aeromonas species.

  14. Inhibitory and Acceleratory Effects of Inonotus obliquus on Tyrosinase Activity and Melanin Formation in B16 Melanoma Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zheng-Fei Yan

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the present study is to preliminarily investigate the antimelanogenesis effect of Inonotus obliquus extracts by cell-free mushroom tyrosinase assay. It was found that petroleum ether and n-butanol extracts might contain unknown potential tyrosinase inhibitors, while its ethyl acetate extract might contain some unknown accelerators. Six compounds were isolated and their structures were identified by interpretation of NMR data and nicotinic acid was first discovered in Inonotus obliquus. In cells testing, betulin and trametenolic acid decreased tyrosinase activity and melanin content, while inotodiol and lanosterol significantly increased tyrosinase activity and melanin content, showing an AC⁡50 of 9.74 and 8.43 μM, respectively. Nicotinie acid, 3β,22,25-trihydroxy-lanosta-8-ene, had a little or no effect on tyrosinase. Betulin exhibited a mode of noncompetitive inhibition with a KI=KIS of 0.4 μM on tyrosinase activity showing an IC50 of 5.13 μM and being more effective than kojic acid (6.43 μM, and trametenolic acid exhibited a mode of mixed inhibition with a KI of 0.9 μM, KIS of 0.5 μM, and an IC50 of 7.25 μM. We proposed betulin and trametenolic acid as a new candidate of potent tyrosinase inhibitors and inotodiol and lanosterol as accelerators that could be used as therapeutic agent.

  15. Animal MRI Core

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Animal Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Core develops and optimizes MRI methods for cardiovascular imaging of mice and rats. The Core provides imaging expertise,...

  16. 英语翻转课堂促进幼师职业核心能力培养刍议%On the promotion of English flipped classroom in preschool educators’vocational core competences cultivation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    林学梅

    2016-01-01

    With the high-speed development of information technology and the advent of knowledge-based economy sci-oety,the cultivation of students'vocational core competences in higher vocational colleges is of greater importance. The college English training goals are highly unified to the demands of vocational core competences.With the combination of microlecture re-sources and flipped classroom to establish a new English teaching mode-microlecture based “English flipped classroom”,has positive effects on cultivating higher vocational preschool educators’vocational core competences.%高职院校对学生职业核心能力的培养随着信息技术的高速发展以及知识经济社会的到来而愈发重要。大学英语培养目标与职业核心能力的培养需求高度统一。文章结合微课资源和翻转课堂模式建立起的新型英语教学模式———基于微课的英语翻转课堂,对高职幼师职业核心能力的培养有着积极作用。

  17. 从藜豆中提取天然黑色素的工艺研究%Study on the extraction of natural melanin from mucuna macrocarpa wall

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    陈松; 韦万兴; 刘志平; 周敏; 卓家雄; 肖世基

    2011-01-01

    The extraction of natural melanin from mucuna macrocarpa wall was studied. Based on the experiment, the melanin was suitable to be extracted with 4% NaOH at 60 t for 40 min,precipitated when pH was 2. After further purification,3.62% yield of melanin was obtained. With UV and IR analysis,the melanin has the structure model of catechol.%以我国南方资源丰富的藜豆为原料,对藜豆中的天然黑色素提取工艺进行了研究,得出了藜豆黑色素的最佳提取条件:用4% NaOH溶液于60℃超声浸提40 min,调节pH =2,析出黑色素,得率为3.62%.由紫外和红外波谱分析藜豆黑色素具有邻苯二酚型结构.

  18. The hypothalamo-hypophyseal system of the white seabream Diplodus sargus: immunocytochemical identification of arginine-vasotocin, isotocin, melanin-concentrating hormone and corticotropin-releasing factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duarte, G; Segura-Noguera, M M; Martín del Río, M P; Mancera, J M

    2001-01-01

    The distribution of the neurosecretory hormones vasotocin, isotocin and melanin-concentrating hormone and the hypophysiotropic hormone corticotropin-releasing factor was studied in the hypothalamo-hypophyseal system of the white seabream (Diplodus sargus) using immunocytochemical techniques. Magnocellular and parvocellular perikarya immunoreactive for arginine-vasotocin and isotocin were present in the nucleus preopticus. Perikarya immunoreactive for arginine-vasotocin extended more caudally with respect to isotocin-immunoreactive perikarya. Parvocellular perikarya were located at rostroventral levels and magnocellular perikarya in the dorsocaudal portion of the nucleus. Arginine-vasotocin and isotocin did not coexist in the same neuron. Fibres immunoreactive for arginine-vasotocin and isotocin innervated all areas of neurohypophysis and terminate close to corticotropic and melanotropic cells. Perikarya immunoreactive for melanin-concentrating hormone and corticotropin-releasing factor were observed in the nucleus lateralis tuberis, with a few neurons in the nucleus periventricularis posterior. In addition, melanin-concentrating hormone immunoreactive perikarya were detected in the nucleus recessus lateralis. The preoptic nucleus did not show immunoreactivity for these antisera. Fibres showing melanin-concentrating hormone and corticotropin-releasing factor immunoreactivity ended close to the melanotropic and somatolactotrophic cells of the pars intermedia, and close to the corticotrophic cells of the rostral pars distalis.

  19. Manassantin A inhibits cAMP-induced melanin production by down-regulating the gene expressions of MITF and tyrosinase in melanocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hwa Dong; Lee, Won-Hee; Roh, Eunmiri; Seo, Chang-Seob; Son, Jong-Keun; Lee, Seung Ho; Hwang, Bang Yeon; Jung, Sang-Hun; Han, Sang-Bae; Kim, Youngsoo

    2011-09-01

    Microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF) is inducible in response to cAMP through the cAMP-responsive element-binding protein (CREB) and plays a pivotal role in the melanocyte-specific expression of tyrosinase or tyrosinase-related proteins (TRPs) for melanin biosynthesis. Manassantin A from Saururus chinensis inhibits cAMP-induced melanin production in B16 melanoma cells. Here, we focused on molecular basis of the antimelanogenic activity. Manassantin A consistently inhibited the cAMP elevator 3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine (IBMX)- or dibutyryl cAMP-induced melanin production in B16 cells or in melan-a melanocytes by down-regulating the expression of tyrosinase or TRP1 gene. Moreover, manassantin A suppressed MITF induction through IBMX-activated CREB pathway, directly inhibiting the Ser-133 phosphorylation of CREB. However, manassantin A did not affect IBMX-increased cAMP levels in these cells but also other cAMP-dependent melanogenic pathways through post-translational modifications of MITF. This putative molecular mechanism of manassantin A in the inhibition of melanin production suggests its pharmacological potential in skin hyperpigmentation.

  20. New Biosynthetic Step in the Melanin Pathway of Wangiella (Exophiala) dermatitidis: Evidence for 2-Acetyl-1,3,6,8-Tetrahydroxynaphthalene as a Novel Precursor

    Science.gov (United States)

    The predominant cell wall melanin of Wangiella dermatitidis, a black fungal pathogen of humans, is synthesized from 1,8-dihydroxynaphthalene (D2HN). An early precursor, 1,3,6,8-tetrahydroxynaphthalene (T4HN), in the pathway leading to D2HN is reportedly produced as a pentaketide directly by an iter...

  1. Study on antioxidant activities of melanin of Aureobasidium pullulans%出芽短梗霉黑色素的抗氧化活性研究

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    赵博; 乔长晟; 汪建明; 盖丽丰

    2013-01-01

    In order to evaluate the antioxidant activities of melanin in Aureobasidium pullulans, reaction systems of reducing force, DPPH free radicals, hydroxyl free radicals, super oxide anion free radicals, iron chela force as well as inhibition of lipid peroxidation were established. Then antioxidant activities of melanin of Aureobasidium pullulans and Vc were measured and compared in different reaction systems. The result indicated that melanin had certain reductive force, in 0.4g/L was equal to the Vc. Melanin could effectively scavenge DPPH free radicals, hydroxyl free radicals and super oxide anion free radicals. Under the condition of the same concentration, melanin remove hydroxyl free radicals and super oxide anion free radicals were higher than Vc. In addition, melanin had certain iron ion chelated force and suppress the lipid peroxidation ability. So, melanin in Aureobasidium pullulans had good antioxidant activities.%建立了还原力体系、DPPH自由基体系、羟基自由基体系、超氧阴离子自由基体系、铁离子螯合力体系及抑