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Sample records for human disease suggesting

  1. The suggestion of common cause of disease, characteristics of human body, and medical treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Byung-Jun Cho

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Objectives & Methods: This suggestion was attempted to be elevated the recognition of common characteristics in disease. So, we performed to analyze the correlation of common cause of disease, characteristics of human body, and medical treatment. And the results are as follows. Results: 1. The cause of disease is consist of genetic factor, aging, habit, food of not good in health, weather, environment, deficit of the physical activity, stress and so on. 2. Generally, human has common and individual weakness. Individual weakness is appeared similar to the occurrence of volcano and lapse. 3. The correlation of disease and medical treatments is possible to explain using the quotation of the law of motion made by Isaac Newton, the great physicist. 4. When the process of the medical treatment was not progressed, the prognosis is determined by the correlation of the homeostasis(H' in human body and the homeostasis(H of disease. 5. The prognosis of disease is determined by the relationship between the energy of disease(F and medical treatment(F'. 6. The exact diagnosis is possible to predict the treatment sequence, and the facts that homeostasis in human body and disease, relationship between the energy of disease(F and medical treatment(F', action and reaction are important to determine the prognosis. 7. The careful observation of improving response and worsening action of disease becomes available for exact prognosis. Conclusion: The above described contents may be useful in clinical studies, and the concrete clinical reports about this will be made afterward.

  2. Genome-wide association study in multiple human prion diseases suggests genetic risk factors additional to PRNP

    OpenAIRE

    Mead, Simon; Uphill, James; Beck, John; Poulter, Mark; Campbell, Tracy; Lowe, Jessica; Adamson, Gary; Hummerich, Holger; Klopp, Norman; Rückert, Ina-Maria; Wichmann, H-Erich; Azazi, Dhoyazan; Plagnol, Vincent; Pako, Wandagi H.; Whitfield, Jerome

    2011-01-01

    Prion diseases are fatal neurodegenerative diseases of humans and animals caused by the misfolding and aggregation of prion protein (PrP). Mammalian prion diseases are under strong genetic control but few risk factors are known aside from the PrP gene locus (PRNP). No genome-wide association study (GWAS) has been done aside from a small sample of variant Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease (CJD). We conducted GWAS of sporadic CJD (sCJD), variant CJD (vCJD), iatrogenic CJD, inherited prion disease, kuru...

  3. Genome-wide association study in multiple human prion diseases suggests genetic risk factors additional to PRNP

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mead, Simon; Uphill, James; Beck, John; Poulter, Mark; Campbell, Tracy; Lowe, Jessica; Adamson, Gary; Hummerich, Holger; Klopp, Norman; Rückert, Ina-Maria; Wichmann, H-Erich; Azazi, Dhoyazan; Plagnol, Vincent; Pako, Wandagi H.; Whitfield, Jerome; Alpers, Michael P.; Whittaker, John; Balding, David J.; Zerr, Inga; Kretzschmar, Hans; Collinge, John

    2012-01-01

    Prion diseases are fatal neurodegenerative diseases of humans and animals caused by the misfolding and aggregation of prion protein (PrP). Mammalian prion diseases are under strong genetic control but few risk factors are known aside from the PrP gene locus (PRNP). No genome-wide association study (GWAS) has been done aside from a small sample of variant Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease (CJD). We conducted GWAS of sporadic CJD (sCJD), variant CJD (vCJD), iatrogenic CJD, inherited prion disease, kuru and resistance to kuru despite attendance at mortuary feasts. After quality control, we analysed 2000 samples and 6015 control individuals (provided by the Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium and KORA-gen) for 491032-511862 SNPs in the European study. Association studies were done in each geographical and aetiological group followed by several combined analyses. The PRNP locus was highly associated with risk in all geographical and aetiological groups. This association was driven by the known coding variation at rs1799990 (PRNP codon 129). No non-PRNP loci achieved genome-wide significance in the meta-analysis of all human prion disease. SNPs at the ZBTB38–RASA2 locus were associated with CJD in the UK (rs295301, P = 3.13 × 10−8; OR, 0.70) but these SNPs showed no replication evidence of association in German sCJD or in Papua New Guinea-based tests. A SNP in the CHN2 gene was associated with vCJD [P = 1.5 × 10−7; odds ratio (OR), 2.36], but not in UK sCJD (P = 0.049; OR, 1.24), in German sCJD or in PNG groups. In the overall meta-analysis of CJD, 14 SNPs were associated (P < 10−5; two at PRNP, three at ZBTB38–RASA2, nine at nine other independent non-PRNP loci), more than would be expected by chance. None of the loci recently identified as genome-wide significant in studies of other neurodegenerative diseases showed any clear evidence of association in prion diseases. Concerning common genetic variation, it is likely that the PRNP locus contains the only

  4. Human leptospirosis in Seychelles: A prospective study confirms the heavy burden of the disease but suggests that rats are not the main reservoir.

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    Leon Biscornet

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Leptospirosis is a bacterial zoonosis caused by pathogenic Leptospira for which rats are considered as the main reservoir. Disease incidence is higher in tropical countries, especially in insular ecosystems. Our objectives were to determine the current burden of leptospirosis in Seychelles, a country ranking first worldwide according to historical data, to establish epidemiological links between animal reservoirs and human disease, and to identify drivers of transmission.A total of 223 patients with acute febrile symptoms of unknown origin were enrolled in a 12-months prospective study and tested for leptospirosis through real-time PCR, IgM ELISA and MAT. In addition, 739 rats trapped throughout the main island were investigated for Leptospira renal carriage. All molecularly confirmed positive samples were further genotyped.A total of 51 patients fulfilled the biological criteria of acute leptospirosis, corresponding to an annual incidence of 54.6 (95% CI 40.7-71.8 per 100,000 inhabitants. Leptospira carriage in Rattus spp. was overall low (7.7% but dramatically higher in Rattus norvegicus (52.9% than in Rattus rattus (4.4%. Leptospira interrogans was the only detected species in both humans and rats, and was represented by three distinct Sequence Types (STs. Two were novel STs identified in two thirds of acute human cases while noteworthily absent from rats.This study shows that human leptospirosis still represents a heavy disease burden in Seychelles. Genotype data suggests that rats are actually not the main reservoir for human disease. We highlight a rather limited efficacy of preventive measures so far implemented in Seychelles. This could result from ineffective control measures of excreting animal populations, possibly due to a misidentification of the main contaminating reservoir(s. Altogether, presented data stimulate the exploration of alternative reservoir animal hosts.

  5. Crystallographic studies of prion protein (PrP) segments suggest how structural changes encoded by polymorphism at residue 129 modulate susceptibility to human prion disease.

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    Apostol, Marcin I; Sawaya, Michael R; Cascio, Duilio; Eisenberg, David

    2010-09-24

    A single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in codon 129 of the human prion gene, leading to a change from methionine to valine at residue 129 of prion protein (PrP), has been shown to be a determinant in the susceptibility to prion disease. However, the molecular basis of this effect remains unexplained. In the current study, we determined crystal structures of prion segments having either Met or Val at residue 129. These 6-residue segments of PrP centered on residue 129 are "steric zippers," pairs of interacting β-sheets. Both structures of these "homozygous steric zippers" reveal direct intermolecular interactions between Met or Val in one sheet and the identical residue in the mating sheet. These two structures, plus a structure-based model of the heterozygous Met-Val steric zipper, suggest an explanation for the previously observed effects of this locus on prion disease susceptibility and progression.

  6. Crystallographic Studies of Prion Protein (PrP) Segments Suggest How Structural Changes Encoded by Polymorphism at Residue 129 Modulate Susceptibility to Human Prion Disease

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    Apostol, Marcin I.; Sawaya, Michael R.; Cascio, Duilio; Eisenberg, David (UCLA)

    2010-09-23

    A single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in codon 129 of the human prion gene, leading to a change from methionine to valine at residue 129 of prion protein (PrP), has been shown to be a determinant in the susceptibility to prion disease. However, the molecular basis of this effect remains unexplained. In the current study, we determined crystal structures of prion segments having either Met or Val at residue 129. These 6-residue segments of PrP centered on residue 129 are 'steric zippers,' pairs of interacting {beta}-sheets. Both structures of these 'homozygous steric zippers' reveal direct intermolecular interactions between Met or Val in one sheet and the identical residue in the mating sheet. These two structures, plus a structure-based model of the heterozygous Met-Val steric zipper, suggest an explanation for the previously observed effects of this locus on prion disease susceptibility and progression.

  7. Gene expression profiling suggests a pathological role of human bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells in aging-related skeletal diseases.

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    Jiang, Shih Sheng; Chen, Chung-Hsing; Tseng, Kuo-Yun; Tsai, Fang-Yu; Wang, Ming Jen; Chang, I-Shou; Lin, Jiunn-Liang; Lin, Shankung

    2011-07-01

    Aging is associated with bone loss and degenerative joint diseases, in which the aging of bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cell (bmMSC)[1] may play an important role. In this study, we analyzed the gene expression profiles of bmMSC from 14 donors between 36 and 74 years old, and obtained age-associated genes (in the background of osteoarthritis) and osteoarthritis-associated genes (in the background of old age). Pathway analysis of these genes suggests that alterations in glycobiology might play an important role in the aging of human bmMSC. On the other hand, antigen presentation and signaling of immune cells were the top pathways enriched by osteoarthritis-associated genes, suggesting that alteration in immunology of bmMSC might be involved in the pathogenesis of osteoarthritis. Most intriguingly, we found significant age-associated differential expression of HEXA, HEXB, CTSK, SULF1, ADAMTS5, SPP1, COL8A2, GPNMB, TNFAIP6, and RPL29; those genes have been implicated in the bone loss and the pathology of osteoporosis and osteoarthritis in aging. Collectively, our results suggest a pathological role of bmMSC in aging-related skeletal diseases, and suggest the possibility that alteration in the immunology of bmMSC might also play an important role in the etiology of adult-onset osteoarthritis.

  8. Disease load at conception predicts survival in later epidemics in a historical French-Canadian cohort, suggesting functional trans-generational effects in humans.

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    Kai Willführ

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: Functional trans-generational and parental effects are potentially important determinants of health in several mammals. For humans, the existing evidence is weak. We investigate whether disease exposure triggers functional trans-generational response effects among humans by analyzing siblings who were conceived under different disease loads, and comparing their mortality in later epidemics. Under functional trans-generational response mechanisms, we expect that those who were conceived under high pathogenic stress load will have relatively low mortality during a later epidemic. METHODS: We use data from the Registre de la Population du Québec Ancien, which covers the historical population living in St. Lawrence Valley, Québec, Canada. Children born in 1705-1724 were grouped according to their exposure during conception to the measles 1714-15 epidemic. The 1714-15 epidemic was followed by two mortality crises in 1729-1734. The cause of the first crises in 1729 is not exactly known. The second crisis in 1732 was caused by a smallpox epidemic. Using proportional hazard Cox regression models with multivariate adjustment and with fixed-effects approach that compare siblings, we analyze whether mortality in 1729-1734 is affected by exposure to the 1714-15 epidemic. RESULTS: Children who were conceived during the peak of the measles epidemic of 1714-15 exhibited significantly lower mortality during the 1729-1734 crisis than those who were born before the 1714-15 epidemic (mortality hazard ratio 0.106, p<.05 in multivariate adjusted models; 0.142 p<.1 in sibling comparison models. CONCLUSIONS: The results are consistent with a trans-generational mechanism that functionally responds to pathogen stress and suggest that early disease exposure may be protective later in life. Alternative explanations for the mortality patterns are discussed and shown to be problematic.

  9. A knockin mouse model for human ATP4aR703C mutation identified in familial gastric neuroendocrine tumors recapitulates the premalignant condition of the human disease and suggests new therapeutic strategies

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    Oriol Calvete

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available By whole exome sequencing, we recently identified a missense mutation (p.R703C in the human ATP4a gene, which encodes the proton pump responsible for gastric acidification. This mutation causes an aggressive familial type I gastric neuroendocrine tumor in homozygous individuals. Affected individuals show an early onset of the disease, characterized by gastric hypoacidity, hypergastrinemia, iron-deficiency anemia, gastric intestinal metaplasia and, in one case, an associated gastric adenocarcinoma. Total gastrectomy was performed as the definitive treatment in all affected individuals. We now describe the generation and characterization of a knockin mouse model for the ATP4aR703C mutation to better understand the tumorigenesis process. Homozygous mice recapitulated most of the phenotypical alterations that were observed in human individuals, strongly suggesting that this mutation is the primary alteration responsible for disease development. Homozygous mice developed premalignant condition with severe hyperplasia, dysplasia and glandular metaplasia in the stomach. Interestingly, gastric acidification in homozygous mice, induced by treatment with 3% HCl acid in the drinking water, prevented (if treated from birth or partially reverted (if treated during adulthood the development of glandular metaplasia and dysplasia in the stomach and partially rescued the abnormal biochemical parameters. We therefore suggest that, in this model, achlorhydria contributes to tumorigenesis to a greater extent than hypergastrinemia. Furthermore, our mouse model represents a unique and novel tool for studying the pathologies associated with disturbances in gastric acid secretion.

  10. Human Environmental Disease Network

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Taboureau, Olivier; Audouze, Karine

    2017-01-01

    During the past decades, many epidemiological, toxicological and biological studies have been performed to assess the role of environmental chemicals as potential toxicants for diverse human disorders. However, the relationships between diseases based on chemical exposure have been rarely studied...... by computational biology. We developed a human environmental disease network (EDN) to explore and suggest novel disease-disease and chemical-disease relationships. The presented scored EDN model is built upon the integration on systems biology and chemical toxicology using chemical contaminants information...

  11. In vitro model suggests oxidative stress involved in keratoconus disease

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    Karamichos, D.; Hutcheon, A. E. K.; Rich, C. B.; Trinkaus-Randall, V.; Asara, J. M.; Zieske, J. D.

    2014-04-01

    Keratoconus (KC) affects 1:2000 people and is a disorder where cornea thins and assumes a conical shape. Advanced KC requires surgery to maintain vision. The role of oxidative stress in KC remains unclear. We aimed to identify oxidative stress levels between human corneal keratocytes (HCKs), fibroblasts (HCFs) and keratoconus cells (HKCs). Cells were cultured in 2D and 3D systems. Vitamin C (VitC) and TGF-β3 (T3) were used for 4 weeks to stimulate self-assembled extracellular matrix (ECM). No T3 used as controls. Samples were analyzed using qRT-PCR and metabolomics. qRT-PCR data showed low levels of collagen I and V, as well as keratocan for HKCs, indicating differentiation to a myofibroblast phenotype. Collagen type III, a marker for fibrosis, was up regulated in HKCs. We robustly detected more than 150 metabolites of the targeted 250 by LC-MS/MS per condition and among those metabolites several were related to oxidative stress. Lactate levels, lactate/malate and lactate/pyruvate ratios were elevated in HKCs, while arginine and glutathione/oxidized glutathione ratio were reduced. Similar patterns found in both 2D and 3D. Our data shows that fibroblasts exhibit enhanced oxidative stress compared to keratocytes. Furthermore the HKC cells exhibit the greatest level suggesting they may have a myofibroblast phenotype.

  12. Viral diseases and human evolution

    OpenAIRE

    2000-01-01

    The interaction of man with viral agents was possibly a key factor shaping human evolution, culture and civilization from its outset. Evidence of the effect of disease, since the early stages of human speciation, through pre-historical times to the present suggest that the types of viruses associated with man changed in time. As human populations progressed technologically, they grew in numbers and density. As a consequence different viruses found suitable conditions to thrive and establish l...

  13. Suggestions on Improvement of Infectious Disease Law and Regulations.

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    Park, Mijeong

    2017-07-25

    The study's perspective is through examining an enactment for the New amendment for legislation, to make proposals for a more rational and concrete basis in the interpretation and application of the Korean legal regime in global infectious disease emergency situations. The Republic of Korea reported its first laboratory-confirmed case of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Corona Virus (MERS-CoV) on 20 May 2015. Since the first index case, Korean public health authorities enforced many public health measures that were not authorized in the law. It is because the scope of the current law was too limited to cover MERS. Korea has three levels of government: the central government, special self-governing provinces, and Si/Gun/Gu, but the Infectious Disease Control and Prevention Act does not distinguish among the roles of each level of government and does not state how these governments should be vertically integrated in a state of emergency. When thinking about these policy questions, we should be especially concerned about in introducing a new Act that deals with all matters relevant to emerging infectious diseases. As a result to come up with a structure that specifies the roles of each level of government and facilitates the close collaboration among them through to establish role as basic law taking advantage of the law about prevention and response of infectious disease. To address this problem, after analyze in terms of national healthcare infrastructure along with the characteristics of new infectious diseases.

  14. Suggestion: Human Factor Based User Interface Design Tool

    OpenAIRE

    S.Q. Abbas,; Rizwan Beg; Shahnaz Fatima

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, we introduce HFBUIT, Human Factor based user interface tool that enables designers and engineers to create human factor based user interface. This tool will help the designer to utilize the knowledge about the user to configure the interface for different users, i.e. each user may have different skills, level of experience, or cognitive and physical disabilities. The tool makes it easy to knowhuman factors & to reduce the number of usability problems. HFBUIT can be used in real...

  15. Viral diseases and human evolution

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    Leal Élcio de Souza

    2000-01-01

    Full Text Available The interaction of man with viral agents was possibly a key factor shaping human evolution, culture and civilization from its outset. Evidence of the effect of disease, since the early stages of human speciation, through pre-historical times to the present suggest that the types of viruses associated with man changed in time. As human populations progressed technologically, they grew in numbers and density. As a consequence different viruses found suitable conditions to thrive and establish long-lasting associations with man. Although not all viral agents cause disease and some may in fact be considered beneficial, the present situation of overpopulation, poverty and ecological inbalance may have devastating effets on human progress. Recently emerged diseases causing massive pandemics (eg., HIV-1 and HCV, dengue, etc. are becoming formidable challenges, which may have a direct impact on the fate of our species.

  16. Retroviruses and human disease.

    OpenAIRE

    1987-01-01

    Over the past 25 years animal retroviruses have been favoured subjects of research by virologists, oncologists, and molecular biologists. Retroviruses have given us reverse transcriptase, oncogenes, and cloning vectors that may one day be exploited for human gene therapy. They have also given us leukaemia and the acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). Kawasaki disease and tropical spastic paraparesis are thought to be associated with retrovirus infection, and other diseases such as de Qu...

  17. Linking Microbiota to Human Diseases

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wu, Hao; Tremaroli, Valentina; Bäckhed, F

    2015-01-01

    diabetes (T2D), and irritable bowel syndrome, and some animal experiments have suggested causality. However, few studies have validated causality in humans and the underlying mechanisms remain largely to be elucidated. We discuss how systems biology approaches combined with new experimental technologies......The human gut microbiota encompasses a densely populated ecosystem that provides essential functions for host development, immune maturation, and metabolism. Alterations to the gut microbiota have been observed in numerous diseases, including human metabolic diseases such as obesity, type 2...... may disentangle some of the mechanistic details in the complex interactions of diet, microbiota, and host metabolism and may provide testable hypotheses for advancing our current understanding of human-microbiota interaction....

  18. Atomic structures suggest determinants of transmission barriers in mammalian prion disease.

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    Apostol, Marcin I; Wiltzius, Jed J W; Sawaya, Michael R; Cascio, Duilio; Eisenberg, David

    2011-04-05

    Prion represents a unique class of pathogens devoid of nucleic acid. The deadly diseases transmitted by it between members of one species and, in certain instances, to members of other species present a public health concern. Transmissibility and the barriers to transmission between species have been suggested to arise from the degree to which a pathological protein conformation from an individual of one species can seed a pathological conformation in another species. However, this hypothesis has never been illustrated at an atomic level. Here we present three X-ray atomic structures of the same segment from human, mouse, and hamster PrP, which is critical for forming amyloid and confers species specificity in PrP seeding experiments. The structures reveal that different sequences encode different steric zippers and suggest that the degree of dissimilarity of these zipper structures gives rise to transmission barriers in prion disease, such as those that protect humans from acquiring bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) and chronic wasting disease (CWD).

  19. Genetic Mapping in Human Disease

    OpenAIRE

    Altshuler, David; Daly, Mark J; Lander, Eric S.

    2008-01-01

    Genetic mapping provides a powerful approach to identify genes and biological processes underlying any trait influenced by inheritance, including human diseases. We discuss the intellectual foundations of genetic mapping of Mendelian and complex traits in humans, examine lessons emerging from linkage analysis of Mendelian diseases and genome-wide association studies of common diseases, and discuss questions and challenges that lie ahead.

  20. Does biodiversity protect humans against infectious disease?

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    Wood, Chelsea L; Lafferty, Kevin D; DeLeo, Giulio; Young, Hillary S; Hudson, Peter J; Kuris, Armand M

    2014-04-01

    Control of human infectious disease has been promoted as a valuable ecosystem service arising from the conservation of biodiversity. There are two commonly discussed mechanisms by which biodiversity loss could increase rates of infectious disease in a landscape. First, loss of competitors or predators could facilitate an increase in the abundance of competent reservoir hosts. Second, biodiversity loss could disproportionately affect non-competent, or less competent reservoir hosts, which would otherwise interfere with pathogen transmission to human populations by, for example, wasting the bites of infected vectors. A negative association between biodiversity and disease risk, sometimes called the "dilution effect hypothesis," has been supported for a few disease agents, suggests an exciting win-win outcome for the environment and society, and has become a pervasive topic in the disease ecology literature. Case studies have been assembled to argue that the dilution effect is general across disease agents. Less touted are examples in which elevated biodiversity does not affect or increases infectious disease risk for pathogens of public health concern. In order to assess the likely generality of the dilution effect, we review the association between biodiversity and public health across a broad variety of human disease agents. Overall, we hypothesize that conditions for the dilution effect are unlikely to be met for most important diseases of humans. Biodiversity probably has little net effect on most human infectious diseases but, when it does have an effect, observation and basic logic suggest that biodiversity will be more likely to increase than to decrease infectious disease risk.

  1. Human Cytomegalovirus and Autoimmune Disease

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    Anne Halenius

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV represents a prototypic pathogenic member of the β-subgroup of the herpesvirus family. A range of HCMV features like its lytic replication in multiple tissues, the lifelong persistence through periods of latency and intermitting reactivation, the extraordinary large proteome, and extensive manipulation of adaptive and innate immunity make HCMV a high profile candidate for involvement in autoimmune disorders. We surveyed the available literature for reports on HCMV association with onset or exacerbation of autoimmune disease. A causative linkage between HCMV and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE, systemic sclerosis (SSc, diabetes mellitus type 1, and rheumatoid arthritis (RA is suggested by the literature. However, a clear association of HCMV seroprevalence and disease could not be established, leaving the question open whether HCMV could play a coresponsible role for onset of disease. For convincing conclusions population-based prospective studies must be performed in the future. Specific immunopathogenic mechanisms by which HCMV could contribute to the course of autoimmune disease have been suggested, for example, molecular mimicry by UL94 in SSc and UL83/pp65 in SLE patients, as well as aggravation of joint inflammation by induction and expansion of CD4+/CD28− T-cells in RA patients. Further studies are needed to validate these findings and to lay the grounds for targeted therapeutic intervention.

  2. Human PTCHD3 nulls: rare copy number and sequence variants suggest a non-essential gene

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    Lionel Anath C

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Copy number variations (CNVs can contribute to variable degrees of fitness and/or disease predisposition. Recent studies show that at least 1% of any given genome is copy number variable when compared to the human reference sequence assembly. Homozygous deletions (or CNV nulls that are found in the normal population are of particular interest because they may serve to define non-essential genes in human biology. Results In a genomic screen investigating CNV in Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs we detected a heterozygous deletion on chromosome 10p12.1, spanning the Patched-domain containing 3 (PTCHD3 gene, at a frequency of ~1.4% (6/427. This finding seemed interesting, given recent discoveries on the role of another Patched-domain containing gene (PTCHD1 in ASD. Screening of another 177 ASD probands yielded two additional heterozygous deletions bringing the frequency to 1.3% (8/604. The deletion was found at a frequency of ~0.73% (27/3,695 in combined control population from North America and Northern Europe predominately of European ancestry. Screening of the human genome diversity panel (HGDP-CEPH covering worldwide populations yielded deletions in 7/1,043 unrelated individuals and those detected were confined to individuals of European/Mediterranean/Middle Eastern ancestry. Breakpoint mapping yielded an identical 102,624 bp deletion in all cases and controls tested, suggesting a common ancestral event. Interestingly, this CNV occurs at a break of synteny between humans and mouse. Considering all data, however, no significant association of these rare PTCHD3 deletions with ASD was observed. Notwithstanding, our RNA expression studies detected PTCHD3 in several tissues, and a novel shorter isoform for PTCHD3 was characterized. Expression in transfected COS-7 cells showed PTCHD3 isoforms colocalize with calnexin in the endoplasmic reticulum. The presence of a patched (Ptc domain suggested a role for PTCHD3 in various biological

  3. Human Microbiota and Ophthalmic Disease.

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    Lu, Louise J; Liu, Ji

    2016-09-01

    The human ocular surface, consisting of the cornea and conjunctiva, is colonized by an expansive, diverse microbial community. Molecular-based methods, such as 16S rRNA sequencing, has allowed for more comprehensive and precise identification of the species composition of the ocular surface microbiota compared to traditional culture-based methods. Evidence suggests that the normal microbiota plays a protective immunological role in preventing the proliferation of pathogenic species and thus, alterations in the homeostatic microbiome may be linked to ophthalmic pathologies. Further investigation of the ocular surface microbiome, as well as the microbiome of other areas of the body such as the oral mucosa and gut, and their role in the pathophysiology of diseases is a significant, emerging field of research, and may someday enable the development of novel probiotic approaches for the treatment and prevention of ophthalmic diseases.

  4. Evidence to suggest that teeth act as human ornament displays signalling mate quality.

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    Colin A Hendrie

    Full Text Available Ornament displays seen in animals convey information about genetic quality, developmental history and current disease state to both prospective sexual partners and potential rivals. In this context, showing of teeth through smiles etc is a characteristic feature of human social interaction. Tooth development is influenced by genetic and environmental factors. Adult teeth record environmental and traumatic events, as well as the effects of disease and ageing. Teeth are therefore a rich source of information about individuals and their histories. This study examined the effects of digital manipulations of tooth colour and spacing. Results showed that deviation away from normal spacing and/or the presence of yellowed colouration had negative effects on ratings of attractiveness and that these effects were markedly stronger in female models. Whitening had no effect beyond that produced by natural colouration. This indicates that these colour induced alterations in ratings of attractiveness are mediated by increased/decreased yellowing rather than whitening per se. Teeth become yellower and darker with age. Therefore it is suggested that whilst the teeth of both sexes act as human ornament displays, the female display is more complex because it additionally signals residual reproductive value.

  5. Gene Expression Profiles from Disease Discordant Twins Suggest Shared Antiviral Pathways and Viral Exposures among Multiple Systemic Autoimmune Diseases.

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    Gan, Lu; O'Hanlon, Terrance P; Lai, Zhennan; Fannin, Rick; Weller, Melodie L; Rider, Lisa G; Chiorini, John A; Miller, Frederick W

    2015-01-01

    Viral agents are of interest as possible autoimmune triggers due to prior reported associations and widely studied molecular mechanisms of antiviral immune responses in autoimmunity. Here we examined new viral candidates for the initiation and/or promotion of systemic autoimmune diseases (SAID), as well as possible related signaling pathways shared in the pathogenesis of those disorders. RNA isolated from peripheral blood samples from 33 twins discordant for SAID and 33 matched, unrelated healthy controls was analyzed using a custom viral-human gene microarray. Paired comparisons were made among three study groups-probands with SAID, their unaffected twins, and matched, unrelated healthy controls-using statistical and molecular pathway analyses. Probands and unaffected twins differed significantly in the expression of 537 human genes, and 107 of those were associated with viral infections. These 537 differentially expressed human genes participate in overlapping networks of several canonical, biologic pathways relating to antiviral responses and inflammation. Moreover, certain viral genes were expressed at higher levels in probands compared to either unaffected twins or unrelated, healthy controls. Interestingly, viral gene expression levels in unaffected twins appeared intermediate between those of probands and the matched, unrelated healthy controls. Of the viruses with overexpressed viral genes, herpes simplex virus-2 (HSV-2) was the only human viral pathogen identified using four distinct oligonucleotide probes corresponding to three HSV-2 genes associated with different stages of viral infection. Although the effects from immunosuppressive therapy on viral gene expression remain unclear, this exploratory study suggests a new approach to evaluate shared viral agents and antiviral immune responses that may be involved in the development of SAID.

  6. Meta-analysis of crowdsourced data compendia suggests pan-disease transcriptional signatures of autoimmunity [version 1; referees: 2 approved

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    William W. Lau

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Background: The proliferation of publicly accessible large-scale biological data together with increasing availability of bioinformatics tools have the potential to transform biomedical research. Here we report a crowdsourcing Jamboree that explored whether a team of volunteer biologists without formal bioinformatics training could use OMiCC, a crowdsourcing web platform that facilitates the reuse and (meta- analysis of public gene expression data, to compile and annotate gene expression data, and design comparisons between disease and control sample groups. Methods: The Jamboree focused on several common human autoimmune diseases, including systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE, multiple sclerosis (MS, type I diabetes (DM1, and rheumatoid arthritis (RA, and the corresponding mouse models. Meta-analyses were performed in OMiCC using comparisons constructed by the participants to identify 1 gene expression signatures for each disease (disease versus healthy controls at the gene expression and biological pathway levels, 2 conserved signatures across all diseases within each species (pan-disease signatures, and 3 conserved signatures between species for each disease and across all diseases (cross-species signatures. Results: A large number of differentially expressed genes were identified for each disease based on meta-analysis, with observed overlap among diseases both within and across species. Gene set/pathway enrichment of upregulated genes suggested conserved signatures (e.g., interferon across all human and mouse conditions. Conclusions: Our Jamboree exercise provides evidence that when enabled by appropriate tools, a "crowd" of biologists can work together to accelerate the pace by which the increasingly large amounts of public data can be reused and meta-analyzed for generating and testing hypotheses. Our encouraging experience suggests that a similar crowdsourcing approach can be used to explore other biological questions.

  7. Mitochondrial Genome Analyses Suggest Multiple Trichuris Species in Humans, Baboons, and Pigs from Different Geographical Regions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohamed B F Hawash

    Full Text Available The whipworms Trichuris trichiura and Trichuris suis are two parasitic nematodes of humans and pigs, respectively. Although whipworms in human and non-human primates historically have been referred to as T. trichiura, recent reports suggest that several Trichuris spp. are found in primates.We sequenced and annotated complete mitochondrial genomes of Trichuris recovered from a human in Uganda, an olive baboon in the US, a hamadryas baboon in Denmark, and two pigs from Denmark and Uganda. Comparative analyses using other published mitochondrial genomes of Trichuris recovered from a human and a porcine host in China and from a françois' leaf-monkey (China were performed, including phylogenetic analyses and pairwise genetic and amino acid distances. Genetic and protein distances between human Trichuris in Uganda and China were high (~19% and 15%, respectively suggesting that they represented different species. Trichuris from the olive baboon in US was genetically related to human Trichuris in China, while the other from the hamadryas baboon in Denmark was nearly identical to human Trichuris from Uganda. Baboon-derived Trichuris was genetically distinct from Trichuris from françois' leaf monkey, suggesting multiple whipworm species circulating among non-human primates. The genetic and protein distances between pig Trichuris from Denmark and other regions were roughly 9% and 6%, respectively, while Chinese and Ugandan whipworms were more closely related.Our results indicate that Trichuris species infecting humans and pigs are phylogenetically distinct across geographical regions, which might have important implications for the implementation of suitable and effective control strategies in different regions. Moreover, we provide support for the hypothesis that Trichuris infecting primates represents a complex of cryptic species with some species being able to infect both humans and non-human primates.

  8. Global biogeography of human infectious diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murray, Kris A; Preston, Nicholas; Allen, Toph; Zambrana-Torrelio, Carlos; Hosseini, Parviez R; Daszak, Peter

    2015-10-13

    The distributions of most infectious agents causing disease in humans are poorly resolved or unknown. However, poorly known and unknown agents contribute to the global burden of disease and will underlie many future disease risks. Existing patterns of infectious disease co-occurrence could thus play a critical role in resolving or anticipating current and future disease threats. We analyzed the global occurrence patterns of 187 human infectious diseases across 225 countries and seven epidemiological classes (human-specific, zoonotic, vector-borne, non-vector-borne, bacterial, viral, and parasitic) to show that human infectious diseases exhibit distinct spatial grouping patterns at a global scale. We demonstrate, using outbreaks of Ebola virus as a test case, that this spatial structuring provides an untapped source of prior information that could be used to tighten the focus of a range of health-related research and management activities at early stages or in data-poor settings, including disease surveillance, outbreak responses, or optimizing pathogen discovery. In examining the correlates of these spatial patterns, among a range of geographic, epidemiological, environmental, and social factors, mammalian biodiversity was the strongest predictor of infectious disease co-occurrence overall and for six of the seven disease classes examined, giving rise to a striking congruence between global pathogeographic and "Wallacean" zoogeographic patterns. This clear biogeographic signal suggests that infectious disease assemblages remain fundamentally constrained in their distributions by ecological barriers to dispersal or establishment, despite the homogenizing forces of globalization. Pathogeography thus provides an overarching context in which other factors promoting infectious disease emergence and spread are set.

  9. Mitochondrial genome analyses suggest multiple Trichuris species in humans, baboons, and pigs from different geographical regions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hawash, Mohamed B. F.; Andersen, Lee O.; Gasser, Robin B.;

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The whipworms Trichuris trichiura and Trichuris suis are two parasitic nematodes of humans and pigs, respectively. Although whipworms in human and non-human primates historically have been referred to as T. trichiura, recent reports suggest that several Trichuris spp. are found...... in primates. METHODS AND FINDINGS: We sequenced and annotated complete mitochondrial genomes of Trichuris recovered from a human in Uganda, an olive baboon in the US, a hamadryas baboon in Denmark, and two pigs from Denmark and Uganda. Comparative analyses using other published mitochondrial genomes...... of Trichuris recovered from a human and a porcine host in China and from a françois' leaf-monkey (China) were performed, including phylogenetic analyses and pairwise genetic and amino acid distances. Genetic and protein distances between human Trichuris in Uganda and China were high (~19% and 15%, respectively...

  10. The complement system in human cardiometabolic disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertle, E; Stehouwer, C D A; van Greevenbroek, M M J

    2014-10-01

    The complement system has been implicated in obesity, fatty liver, diabetes and cardiovascular disease (CVD). Complement factors are produced in adipose tissue and appear to be involved in adipose tissue metabolism and local inflammation. Thereby complement links adipose tissue inflammation to systemic metabolic derangements, such as low-grade inflammation, insulin resistance and dyslipidaemia. Furthermore, complement has been implicated in pathophysiological mechanisms of diet- and alcohol induced liver damage, hyperglycaemia, endothelial dysfunction, atherosclerosis and fibrinolysis. In this review, we summarize current evidence on the role of the complement system in several processes of human cardiometabolic disease. C3 is the central component in complement activation, and has most widely been studied in humans. C3 concentrations are associated with insulin resistance, liver dysfunction, risk of the metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes and CVD. C3 can be activated by the classical, the lectin and the alternative pathway of complement activation; and downstream activation of C3 activates the terminal pathway. Complement may also be activated via extrinsic proteases of the coagulation, fibrinolysis and the kinin systems. Studies on the different complement activation pathways in human cardiometabolic disease are limited, but available evidence suggests that they may have distinct roles in processes underlying cardiometabolic disease. The lectin pathway appeared beneficial in some studies on type 2 diabetes and CVD, while factors of the classical and the alternative pathway were related to unfavourable cardiometabolic traits. The terminal complement pathway was also implicated in insulin resistance and liver disease, and appears to have a prominent role in acute and advanced CVD. The available human data suggest a complex and potentially causal role for the complement system in human cardiometabolic disease. Further, preferably longitudinal studies are needed to

  11. Chromatin remodeling and human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Cheng; Sloan, Emily A; Boerkoel, Cornelius F

    2003-06-01

    In the past few years, there has been a nascent convergence of scientific understanding of inherited human diseases with epigenetics. Identified epigenetic processes involved in human disease include covalent DNA modifications, covalent histone modifications, and histone relocation. Each of these processes influences chromatin structure and thereby regulates gene expression and DNA methylation, replication, recombination, and repair. The importance of these processes for nearly all aspects of normal growth and development is illustrated by the array of multi-system disorders and neoplasias caused by their dysregulation.

  12. Early modern human diversity suggests subdivided population structure and a complex out-of-Africa scenario.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunz, Philipp; Bookstein, Fred L; Mitteroecker, Philipp; Stadlmayr, Andrea; Seidler, Horst; Weber, Gerhard W

    2009-04-14

    The interpretation of genetic evidence regarding modern human origins depends, among other things, on assessments of the structure and the variation of ancient populations. Because we lack genetic data from the time when the first anatomically modern humans appeared, between 200,000 and 60,000 years ago, instead we exploit the phenotype of neurocranial geometry to compare the variation in early modern human fossils with that in other groups of fossil Homo and recent modern humans. Variation is assessed as the mean-squared Procrustes distance from the group average shape in a representation based on several hundred neurocranial landmarks and semilandmarks. We find that the early modern group has more shape variation than any other group in our sample, which covers 1.8 million years, and that they are morphologically similar to recent modern humans of diverse geographically dispersed populations but not to archaic groups. Of the currently competing models of modern human origins, some are inconsistent with these findings. Rather than a single out-of-Africa dispersal scenario, we suggest that early modern humans were already divided into different populations in Pleistocene Africa, after which there followed a complex migration pattern. Our conclusions bear implications for the inference of ancient human demography from genetic models and emphasize the importance of focusing research on those early modern humans, in particular, in Africa.

  13. Multiple endocrine neoplasia type II B with symptoms suggesting Hirschsprung's disease: a case report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahaffey, S M; Martin, L W; McAdams, A J; Ryckman, F C; Torres, M

    1990-01-01

    A 3-year-old child was referred with a tentative diagnosis of Hirschsprung's disease because of life-long constipation and "megacolon" demonstrated radiographically. Our rectal biopsy revealed hyperganglionosis suggestive of multiple endocrine neoplasia (MEN) type II B. This, in addition to an elevated serum calcitonin level, prompted surgical removal of her thyroid, which appeared grossly normal but on sectioning, contained a medullary carcinoma in each lobe. She remains disease-free 5 years later. Gastrointestinal symptoms are a significant component of the MEN type II B syndrome, and often antedate the full phenotypic expression of the syndrome and the development of potentially lethal endocrine neoplasms. On the basis of this experience, it is recommended that MEN II B be included in the differential diagnosis of chronic constipation.

  14. Proteins aggregation and human diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Chin-Kun

    2015-04-01

    Many human diseases and the death of most supercentenarians are related to protein aggregation. Neurodegenerative diseases include Alzheimer's disease (AD), Huntington's disease (HD), Parkinson's disease (PD), frontotemporallobar degeneration, etc. Such diseases are due to progressive loss of structure or function of neurons caused by protein aggregation. For example, AD is considered to be related to aggregation of Aβ40 (peptide with 40 amino acids) and Aβ42 (peptide with 42 amino acids) and HD is considered to be related to aggregation of polyQ (polyglutamine) peptides. In this paper, we briefly review our recent discovery of key factors for protein aggregation. We used a lattice model to study the aggregation rates of proteins and found that the probability for a protein sequence to appear in the conformation of the aggregated state can be used to determine the temperature at which proteins can aggregate most quickly. We used molecular dynamics and simple models of polymer chains to study relaxation and aggregation of proteins under various conditions and found that when the bending-angle dependent and torsion-angle dependent interactions are zero or very small, then protein chains tend to aggregate at lower temperatures. All atom models were used to identify a key peptide chain for the aggregation of insulin chains and to find that two polyQ chains prefer anti-parallel conformation. It is pointed out that in many cases, protein aggregation does not result from protein mis-folding. A potential drug from Chinese medicine was found for Alzheimer's disease.

  15. Chagas disease and human migration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felipe Guhl

    2000-08-01

    Full Text Available Human Chagas disease is a purely accidental occurrence. As humans came into contact with the natural foci of infection might then have become infected as a single addition to the already extensive host range of Trypanosoma cruzi that includes other primates. Thus began a process of adaptation and domiciliation to human habitations through which the vectors had direct access to abundant food as well as protection from climatic changes and predators. Our work deals with the extraction and specific amplification by polymerase chain reaction of T. cruzi DNA obtained from mummified human tissues and the positive diagnosis of Chagas disease in a series of 4,000-year-old Pre-Hispanic human mummies from the northern coast of Chile. The area has been inhabited at least for 7,000 years, first by hunters, fishers and gatherers, and then gradually by more permanent settlements. The studied specimens belonged to the Chinchorro culture, a people inhabiting the area now occupied by the modern city of Arica. These were essentially fishers with a complex religious ideology, which accounts for the preservation of their dead in the way of mummified bodies, further enhanced by the extremely dry conditions of the desert. Chinchorro mummies are, perhaps, the oldest preserved bodies known to date.

  16. [Alzheimer's disease and human memory].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eustache, F; Giffard, B; Rauchs, G; Chételat, G; Piolino, P; Desgranges, B

    2006-10-01

    Memory disorders observed in Alzheimer's disease gave rise, from the eighties, to a detailed analysis into the framework of cognitive neuropsychology which aimed at describing the deficits of very specific processes. Beyond their clinical interest, these studies contributed to the modelisation of human memory thanks to the characterization of different memory systems and their relationships. The first part of this paper gives an overview of the memory deficits in Alzheimer's disease and insists on particular cognitive phenomena. Hence, several examples are developed in the domains of semantic memory (such as hyperpriming and hypopriming effects) and autobiographical memory. Recent results highlight the existence of severe autobiographical amnesia observed in all neurodegenerative diseases, though with contrasting profiles: Ribot's gradient in Alzheimer's disease (showing that remote memories are better preserved than recent ones), reverse gradient in semantic dementia and no clear gradient in the frontal variant of frontotemporal dementia. The second part of this article presents advances in cognitive neuroscience searching to disclose the cerebral substrates of these cognitive deficits in Alzheimer's disease. The studies using functional imaging techniques are the most informative regarding this problematic. While showing the dysfunctions of an extended network, they emphasize the selectivity of cerebral damages that are at the root of very specific cognitive dysfunctions, coming close in that way to the conceptions of cognitive neuropsychology. These neuroimaging studies unravel the existence of compensatory mechanisms, which until recently were clearly missing in the literature on neurodegenerative diseases. These different researches lead to a wide conception of human memory, not just limited to simple instrumental processes (encoding, storage, retrieval), but necessarily covering models of identity and continuity of the subject, which interact in a dynamic way

  17. Transfer RNA and human disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jamie A Abbott

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Pathological mutations in tRNA genes and tRNA processing enzymes are numerous and result in very complicated clinical phenotypes. Mitochondrial tRNA (mt-tRNA genes are hotspots for pathological mutations and over 200 mt-tRNA mutations have been linked to various disease states. Often these mutations prevent tRNA aminoacylation. Disrupting this primary function affects protein synthesis and the expression, folding, and function of oxidative phosphorylation enzymes. Mitochondrial tRNA mutations manifest in a wide panoply of diseases related to cellular energetics, including COX deficiency (cytochrome C oxidase, mitochondrial myopathy, MERRF (Myoclonic Epilepsy with Ragged Red Fibers, and MELAS (mitochondrial encephalomyopathy, lactic acidosis, and stroke-like episodes. Diseases caused by mt-tRNA mutations can also affect very specific tissue types, as in the case of neurosensory non-syndromic hearing loss and pigmentary retinopathy, diabetes mellitus, and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Importantly, mitochondrial heteroplasmy plays a role in disease severity and age of onset as well. Not surprisingly, mutations in enzymes that modify cytoplasmic and mitochondrial tRNAs are also linked to a diverse range of clinical phenotypes. In addition to compromised aminoacylation of the tRNAs, mutated modifying enzymes can also impact tRNA expression and abundance, tRNA modifications, tRNA folding, and even tRNA maturation (e.g., splicing. Some of these pathological mutations in tRNAs and processing enzymes are likely to affect non-canonical tRNA functions, and contribute to the diseases without significantly impacting on translation. This chapter will review recent literature on the relation of mitochondrial and cytoplasmic tRNA, and enzymes that process tRNAs, to human disease. We explore the mechanisms involved in the clinical presentation of these various diseases with an emphasis on neurological disease.

  18. Developing global climate anomalies suggest potential disease risks for 2006 – 2007

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tucker Compton J

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO related climate anomalies have been shown to have an impact on infectious disease outbreaks. The Climate Prediction Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA/CPC has recently issued an unscheduled El Niño advisory, indicating that warmer than normal sea surface temperatures across the equatorial eastern Pacific may have pronounced impacts on global tropical precipitation patterns extending into the northern hemisphere particularly over North America. Building evidence of the links between ENSO driven climate anomalies and infectious diseases, particularly those transmitted by insects, can allow us to provide improved long range forecasts of an epidemic or epizootic. We describe developing climate anomalies that suggest potential disease risks using satellite generated data. Results Sea surface temperatures (SSTs in the equatorial east Pacific ocean have anomalously increased significantly during July – October 2006 indicating the typical development of El Niño conditions. The persistence of these conditions will lead to extremes in global-scale climate anomalies as has been observed during similar conditions in the past. Positive Outgoing Longwave Radiation (OLR anomalies, indicative of severe drought conditions, have been observed across all of Indonesia, Malaysia and most of the Philippines, which are usually the first areas to experience ENSO-related impacts. This dryness can be expected to continue, on average, for the remainder of 2006 continuing into the early part of 2007. During the period November 2006 – January 2007 climate forecasts indicate that there is a high probability for above normal rainfall in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific Islands, the Korean Peninsula, the U.S. Gulf Coast and Florida, northern South America and equatorial east Africa. Taking into consideration current observations and climate forecast information, indications

  19. Developing global climate anomalies suggest potential disease risks for 2006 – 2007

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anyamba, Assaf; Chretien, Jean-Paul; Small, Jennifer; Tucker, Compton J; Linthicum, Kenneth J

    2006-01-01

    Background El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) related climate anomalies have been shown to have an impact on infectious disease outbreaks. The Climate Prediction Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA/CPC) has recently issued an unscheduled El Niño advisory, indicating that warmer than normal sea surface temperatures across the equatorial eastern Pacific may have pronounced impacts on global tropical precipitation patterns extending into the northern hemisphere particularly over North America. Building evidence of the links between ENSO driven climate anomalies and infectious diseases, particularly those transmitted by insects, can allow us to provide improved long range forecasts of an epidemic or epizootic. We describe developing climate anomalies that suggest potential disease risks using satellite generated data. Results Sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the equatorial east Pacific ocean have anomalously increased significantly during July – October 2006 indicating the typical development of El Niño conditions. The persistence of these conditions will lead to extremes in global-scale climate anomalies as has been observed during similar conditions in the past. Positive Outgoing Longwave Radiation (OLR) anomalies, indicative of severe drought conditions, have been observed across all of Indonesia, Malaysia and most of the Philippines, which are usually the first areas to experience ENSO-related impacts. This dryness can be expected to continue, on average, for the remainder of 2006 continuing into the early part of 2007. During the period November 2006 – January 2007 climate forecasts indicate that there is a high probability for above normal rainfall in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific Islands, the Korean Peninsula, the U.S. Gulf Coast and Florida, northern South America and equatorial east Africa. Taking into consideration current observations and climate forecast information, indications are that the following

  20. Discovery of intramolecular trans-sialidases in human gut microbiota suggests novel mechanisms of mucosal adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tailford, Louise E.; Owen, C. David; Walshaw, John; Crost, Emmanuelle H.; Hardy-Goddard, Jemma; Le Gall, Gwenaelle; de Vos, Willem M.; Taylor, Garry L.; Juge, Nathalie

    2015-07-01

    The gastrointestinal mucus layer is colonized by a dense community of microbes catabolizing dietary and host carbohydrates during their expansion in the gut. Alterations in mucosal carbohydrate availability impact on the composition of microbial species. Ruminococcus gnavus is a commensal anaerobe present in the gastrointestinal tract of >90% of humans and overrepresented in inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD). Using a combination of genomics, enzymology and crystallography, we show that the mucin-degrader R. gnavus ATCC 29149 strain produces an intramolecular trans-sialidase (IT-sialidase) that cleaves off terminal α2-3-linked sialic acid from glycoproteins, releasing 2,7-anhydro-Neu5Ac instead of sialic acid. Evidence of IT-sialidases in human metagenomes indicates that this enzyme occurs in healthy subjects but is more prevalent in IBD metagenomes. Our results uncover a previously unrecognized enzymatic activity in the gut microbiota, which may contribute to the adaptation of intestinal bacteria to the mucosal environment in health and disease.

  1. Current demographics suggest future energy supplies will be inadequate to slow human population growth.

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    John P DeLong

    Full Text Available Influential demographic projections suggest that the global human population will stabilize at about 9-10 billion people by mid-century. These projections rest on two fundamental assumptions. The first is that the energy needed to fuel development and the associated decline in fertility will keep pace with energy demand far into the future. The second is that the demographic transition is irreversible such that once countries start down the path to lower fertility they cannot reverse to higher fertility. Both of these assumptions are problematic and may have an effect on population projections. Here we examine these assumptions explicitly. Specifically, given the theoretical and empirical relation between energy-use and population growth rates, we ask how the availability of energy is likely to affect population growth through 2050. Using a cross-country data set, we show that human population growth rates are negatively related to per-capita energy consumption, with zero growth occurring at ∼13 kW, suggesting that the global human population will stop growing only if individuals have access to this amount of power. Further, we find that current projected future energy supply rates are far below the supply needed to fuel a global demographic transition to zero growth, suggesting that the predicted leveling-off of the global population by mid-century is unlikely to occur, in the absence of a transition to an alternative energy source. Direct consideration of the energetic constraints underlying the demographic transition results in a qualitatively different population projection than produced when the energetic constraints are ignored. We suggest that energetic constraints be incorporated into future population projections.

  2. Protein Misfolding and Human Disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gregersen, Niels; Bross, Peter Gerd; Vang, Søren

    2006-01-01

    phenylketonuria, Parkinson's disease, α-1-antitrypsin deficiency, familial neurohypophyseal diabetes insipidus, and short-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency. Despite the differences, an emerging paradigm suggests that the cellular effects of protein misfolding provide a common framework that may contribute......Protein misfolding is a common event in living cells. In young and healthy cells, the misfolded protein load is disposed of by protein quality control (PQC) systems. In aging cells and in cells from certain individuals with genetic diseases, the load may overwhelm the PQC capacity, resulting...... in accumulation of misfolded proteins. Dependent on the properties of the protein and the efficiency of the PQC systems, the accumulated protein may be degraded or assembled into toxic oligomers and aggregates. To illustrate this concept, we discuss a number of very different protein misfolding diseases including...

  3. Molecular Network Analysis Suggests Aberrant CREB-Mediated Gene Regulation in the Alzheimer Disease Hippocampus

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    Jun-ichi Satoh

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The pathogenesis of Alzheimer disease (AD involves the complex interaction between genetic and environmental factors affecting multiple cellular pathways. Recent advances in systems biology provide a system-level understanding of AD by elucidating the genome-wide molecular interactions. By using KeyMolnet, a bioinformatics tool for analyzing molecular interactions on the curated knowledgebase, we characterized molecular network of 2,883 all stages of AD-related genes (ADGs and 559 incipient AD-related genes (IADGs identified by global gene expression profiling of the hippocampal CA1 region of AD brains in terms of significant clinical and pathological correlations (Blalock et al., Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 101: 2173-2178, 2004. By the common upstream search, KeyMolnet identified cAMP-response element-binding protein (CREB as the principal transcription factor exhibiting the most significant relevance to molecular networks of both ADGs and IADGs. The CREB-regulated transcriptional network included upregulated and downregulated sets of ADGs and IADGs, suggesting an involvement of generalized deregulation of the CREB signaling pathway in the pathophysiology of AD, beginning at the early stage of the disease. To verify the in silico observations in vivo, we conducted immunohistochemical studies of 11 AD and 13 age-matched control brains by using anti-phoshorylated CREB (pCREB antibody. An abnormal accumulation of pCREB imunoreactivity was identified in granules of granulovacuolar degeneration (GVD in the hippocampal neurons of AD brains. These observations suggest that aberrant CREB-mediated gene regulation serves as a molecular biomarker of AD-related pathological processes, and support the hypothesis that sequestration of pCREB in GVD granules is in part responsible for deregulation of CREB-mediated gene expression in AD hippocampus.

  4. Demyelination in mild cognitive impairment suggests progression path to Alzheimer's disease.

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    Cristian Carmeli

    Full Text Available The preclinical Alzheimer's disease (AD - amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI - is manifested by phenotypes classified into exclusively memory (single-domain MCI (sMCI and multiple-domain MCI (mMCI. We suggest that typical MCI-to-AD progression occurs through the sMCI-to-mMCI sequence as a result of the extension of initial pathological processes. To support this hypothesis, we assess myelin content with a Magnetization Transfer Ratio (MTR in 21 sMCI and 21 mMCI patients and in 42 age-, sex-, and education-matched controls. A conjunction analysis revealed MTR reduction shared by sMCI and mMCI groups in the medial temporal lobe and posterior structures including white matter (WM: splenium, posterior corona radiata and gray matter (GM: hippocampus; parahippocampal and lingual gyri. A disjunction analysis showed the spread of demyelination to prefrontal WM and insula GM in executive mMCI. Our findings suggest that demyelination starts in the structures affected by neurofibrillary pathology; its presence correlates with the clinical picture and indicates the method of MCI-to-AD progression. In vivo staging of preclinical AD can be developed in terms of WM/GM demyelination.

  5. Aluminium and human breast diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darbre, P D; Pugazhendhi, D; Mannello, F

    2011-11-01

    The human breast is exposed to aluminium from many sources including diet and personal care products, but dermal application of aluminium-based antiperspirant salts provides a local long-term source of exposure. Recent measurements have shown that aluminium is present in both tissue and fat of the human breast but at levels which vary both between breasts and between tissue samples from the same breast. We have recently found increased levels of aluminium in noninvasively collected nipple aspirate fluids taken from breast cancer patients (mean 268 ± 28 μg/l) compared with control healthy subjects (mean 131 ± 10 μg/l) providing evidence of raised aluminium levels in the breast microenvironment when cancer is present. The measurement of higher levels of aluminium in type I human breast cyst fluids (median 150 μg/l) compared with human serum (median 6 μg/l) or human milk (median 25 μg/l) warrants further investigation into any possible role of aluminium in development of this benign breast disease. Emerging evidence for aluminium in several breast structures now requires biomarkers of aluminium action in order to ascertain whether the presence of aluminium has any biological impact. To this end, we report raised levels of proteins that modulate iron homeostasis (ferritin, transferrin) in parallel with raised aluminium in nipple aspirate fluids in vivo, and we report overexpression of mRNA for several S100 calcium binding proteins following long-term exposure of MCF-7 human breast cancer cells in vitro to aluminium chlorhydrate.

  6. Human BCAS3 expression in embryonic stem cells and vascular precursors suggests a role in human embryogenesis and tumor angiogenesis.

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    Kavitha Siva

    Full Text Available Cancer is often associated with multiple and progressive genetic alterations in genes that are important for normal development. BCAS3 (Breast Cancer Amplified Sequence 3 is a gene of unknown function on human chromosome 17q23, a region associated with breakpoints of several neoplasms. The normal expression pattern of BCAS3 has not been studied, though it is implicated in breast cancer progression. Rudhira, a murine WD40 domain protein that is 98% identical to BCAS3 is expressed in embryonic stem (ES cells, erythropoiesis and angiogenesis. This suggests that BCAS3 expression also may not be restricted to mammary tissue and may have important roles in other normal as well as malignant tissues. We show that BCAS3 is also expressed in human ES cells and during their differentiation into blood vascular precursors. We find that BCAS3 is aberrantly expressed in malignant human brain lesions. In glioblastoma, hemangiopericytoma and brain abscess we note high levels of BCAS3 expression in tumor cells and some blood vessels. BCAS3 may be associated with multiple cancerous and rapidly proliferating cells and hence the expression, function and regulation of this gene merits further investigation. We suggest that BCAS3 is mis-expressed in brain tumors and could serve as a human ES cell and tumor marker.

  7. Self-propagative replication of Aβ oligomers suggests potential transmissibility in Alzheimer disease.

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    Amit Kumar

    Full Text Available The aggregation of amyloid-β (Aβ peptide and its deposition in parts of the brain form the central processes in the etiology of Alzheimer disease (AD. The low-molecular weight oligomers of Aβ aggregates (2 to 30 mers are known to be the primary neurotoxic agents whose mechanisms of cellular toxicity and synaptic dysfunction have received substantial attention in the recent years. However, how these toxic agents proliferate and induce widespread amyloid deposition throughout the brain, and what mechanism is involved in the amplification and propagation of toxic oligomer species, are far from clear. Emerging evidence based on transgenic mice models indicates a transmissible nature of Aβ aggregates and implicates a prion-like mechanism of oligomer propagation, which manifests as the dissemination and proliferation of Aβ toxicity. Despite accumulating evidence in support of a transmissible nature of Aβ aggregates, a clear, molecular-level understanding of this intriguing mechanism is lacking. Recently, we reported the characterization of unique replicating oligomers of Aβ42 (12-24 mers in vitro called Large Fatty Acid-derived Oligomers (LFAOs (Kumar et al., 2012, J. Biol. Chem. In the current report, we establish that LFAOs possess physiological activity by activating NF-κB in human neuroblastoma cells, and determine the experimental parameters that control the efficiency of LFAO replication by self-propagation. These findings constitute the first detailed report on monomer - oligomer lateral propagation reactions that may constitute potential mechanism governing transmissibility among Aβ oligomers. These data support the previous reports on transmissible mechanisms observed in transgenic animal models.

  8. Human brain disease recreated in mice

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Marx, J.

    1990-12-14

    In the early 1980s, neurologist Stanley Prusiner suggested that scrapie, an apparently infectious degenerative brain disease of sheep, could be transmitted by prions, infectious particles made just of protein - and containing no nucleic acids. But prion research has come a long way since then. In 1985, the cloning of the gene encoding the prion protein proved that it does in fact exist. And the gene turned out to be widely expressed in the brains of higher organisms, a result suggesting that the prion protein has a normal brain function that can somehow be subverted, leading to brain degeneration. Then studies done during the past 2 years suggested that specific mutations in the prion gene might cause two similar human brain diseases, Gerstmann-Straeussler-Scheinker syndrome (GSS) and Creutzfelt-Jakob disease. Now, Prusiner's group at the University of California, San Francisco, has used genetic engineering techniques to recreate GSS by transplanting the mutated prion gene into mice. Not only will the animal model help neurobiologists answer the many remaining questions about prions and how they work, but it may also shed some light on other neurodegenerative diseases as well.

  9. Widespread divergence of the CEACAM/PSG genes in vertebrates and humans suggests sensitivity to selection.

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    Chia Lin Chang

    Full Text Available In mammals, carcinoembryonic antigen cell adhesion molecules (CEACAMs and pregnancy-specific glycoproteins (PSGs play important roles in the regulation of pathogen transmission, tumorigenesis, insulin signaling turnover, and fetal-maternal interactions. However, how these genes evolved and to what extent they diverged in humans remain to be investigated specifically. Based on syntenic mapping of chordate genomes, we reveal that diverging homologs with a prototypic CEACAM architecture-including an extracellular domain with immunoglobulin variable and constant domain-like regions, and an intracellular domain containing ITAM motif-are present from cartilaginous fish to humans, but are absent in sea lamprey, cephalochordate or urochordate. Interestingly, the CEACAM/PSG gene inventory underwent radical divergence in various vertebrate lineages: from zero in avian species to dozens in therian mammals. In addition, analyses of genetic variations in human populations showed the presence of various types of copy number variations (CNVs at the CEACAM/PSG locus. These copy number polymorphisms have 3-80% frequency in select populations, and encompass single to more than six PSG genes. Furthermore, we found that CEACAM/PSG genes contain a significantly higher density of nonsynonymous single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP compared to the chromosome average, and many CEACAM/PSG SNPs exhibit high population differentiation. Taken together, our study suggested that CEACAM/PSG genes have had a more dynamic evolutionary history in vertebrates than previously thought. Given that CEACAM/PSGs play important roles in maternal-fetal interaction and pathogen recognition, these data have laid the groundwork for future analysis of adaptive CEACAM/PSG genotype-phenotypic relationships in normal and complicated pregnancies as well as other etiologies.

  10. Suggested alternative starch utilization system from the human gut bacterium Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaudet, Marcia M; Rose, David R

    2016-06-01

    The human digestive system is host to a highly populated ecosystem of bacterial species that significantly contributes to our assimilation of dietary carbohydrates. Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron is a member of this ecosystem, and participates largely in the role of the gut microbiome by breaking down dietary complex carbohydrates. This process of acquiring glycans from the colon lumen is predicted to rely on the mechanisms of proteins that are part of a classified system known as polysaccharide utilization loci (PUL). These loci are responsible for binding substrates at the cell outer membrane, internalizing them, and then hydrolyzing them within the periplasm into simple sugars. Here we report our investigation into specific components of a PUL, and suggest an alternative starch utilization system in B. thetaiotaomicron. Our analysis of an outer membrane binding protein, a SusD homolog, highlights its contribution to this PUL by acquiring starch-based sugars from the colon lumen. Through our structural characterization of two Family GH31 α-glucosidases, we reveal the flexibility of this bacterium with respect to utilizing a range of starch-derived glycans with an emphasis on branched substrates. With these results we demonstrate the predicted function of a gene locus that is capable of contributing to starch hydrolysis in the human colon.

  11. The role of chemerin in human disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Magdalena Stojek

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Adipose tissue is not merely a storage depot of triacylglycerols but also a major endocrine organ. Its cells, including adipocytes, synthesize and secrete a range of biologically active molecules termed adipokines. Adipokines that display the properties of cytokines are often called adipocytokines. In recent years there has been increasing interest in a new adipokine called chemerin. Chemerin is a protein synthesized mostly by the adipose tissue and the liver as inactive pre-pro-chemerin. After the intracellular hydrolytic cutting off of the 20-amino-acid N-terminal polypeptide, it is secreted into the bloodstream as inactive pro-chemerin. Biologically active chemerin is then derived from pro-chemerin after cleavage of the C-terminal fragment by serum proteases involved in inflammation, coagulation and fibrinolysis. Proteolytic cleavage leads to formation of several chemerin-derived peptides, both biologically active (often with opposing functions and inactive.Within the last decade, there has been a growing number of publications regarding the role of chemerin in human disease. It seems to be implicated in the inflammatory response, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease and alimentary tract disorders. The article presents the most recent information on the role of chemerin in human disease, and specifically alimentary tract disorders. The available evidence suggests that chemerin is an important link between adipose tissue mass, metabolic processes, the immune system and inflammation, and therefore plays a major role in human pathophysiology.

  12. Urinary metabolomics of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD): preliminary data at birth suggest it is a congenital disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fanos, Vassilios; Pintus, Maria Cristina; Lussu, Milena; Atzori, Luigi; Noto, Antonio; Stronati, Mauro; Guimaraes, Hercilia; Marcialis, Maria Antonietta; Rocha, Gustavo; Moretti, Corrado; Papoff, Paola; Lacerenza, Serafina; Puddu, Silvia; Giuffrè, Mario; Serraino, Francesca; Mussap, Michele; Corsello, Giovanni

    2014-10-01

    Bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) or chronic lung disease is one of the principal causes of mortality and morbidity in preterm infants. Early identification of infants at the greater risk of developing BPD may allow a targeted approach for reducing disease severity and complications. The trigger cause of the disease comprehends the impairment of the alveolar development and the increased angiogenesis. Nevertheless, the molecular pathways characterizing the disease are still unclear. Therefore, the use of the metabolomics technique, due to the capability of identifying instantaneous metabolic perturbation, might help to recognize metabolic patterns associated with the condition. The purpose of this study is to compare urinary metabolomics at birth in 36 newborns with a gestational age below 29 weeks and birth weight congenital disease (genetics plus intrauterine epigenetics). Early identification of infants at the greater risk of developing BPD may allow a targeted approach for reducing disease severity and complications.

  13. DNA methylation analysis in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease suggests distinct disease-specific and remodeling signatures after bariatric surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahrens, Markus; Ammerpohl, Ole; von Schönfels, Witigo; Kolarova, Julia; Bens, Susanne; Itzel, Timo; Teufel, Andreas; Herrmann, Alexander; Brosch, Mario; Hinrichsen, Holger; Erhart, Wiebke; Egberts, Jan; Sipos, Bence; Schreiber, Stefan; Häsler, Robert; Stickel, Felix; Becker, Thomas; Krawczak, Michael; Röcken, Christoph; Siebert, Reiner; Schafmayer, Clemens; Hampe, Jochen

    2013-08-01

    Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the most common chronic liver disorder in industrialized countries. Liver samples from morbidly obese patients (n = 45) with all stages of NAFLD and controls (n = 18) were analyzed by array-based DNA methylation and mRNA expression profiling. NAFLD-specific expression and methylation differences were seen for nine genes coding for key enzymes in intermediate metabolism (including PC, ACLY, and PLCG1) and insulin/insulin-like signaling (including IGF1, IGFBP2, and PRKCE) and replicated by bisulfite pyrosequening (independent n = 39). Transcription factor binding sites at NAFLD-specific CpG sites were >1,000-fold enriched for ZNF274, PGC1A, and SREBP2. Intraindividual comparison of liver biopsies before and after bariatric surgery showed NAFLD-associated methylation changes to be partially reversible. Postbariatric and NAFLD-specific methylation signatures were clearly distinct both in gene ontology and transcription factor binding site analyses, with >400-fold enrichment of NRF1, HSF1, and ESRRA sites. Our findings provide an example of treatment-induced epigenetic organ remodeling in humans.

  14. Transcriptome analyses suggest a disturbance of iron homeostasis in soybean leaves during white mould disease establishment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calla, Bernarda; Blahut-Beatty, Laureen; Koziol, Lisa; Simmonds, Daina H; Clough, Steven J

    2014-08-01

    Sclerotinia sclerotiorum is a serious pathogen of numerous crops around the world. The major virulence factor of this pathogen is oxalic acid (OA). Mutants that cannot produce OA do not cause disease, and plants that express enzymes that degrade OA, such as oxalate oxidase (OxO), are very resistant to S. sclerotiorum. To examine the effect of OA on plants, we infiltrated soybean leaves with 5 mm OA and examined the gene expression changes at 2 h post-infiltration. By comparing the gene expression levels between leaves of a transgenic soybean carrying an OxO gene (OxO) and its parent AC Colibri (AC) infiltrated with OA (pH 2.4) or water (pH 2.4 or 5.5), we were able to compare the effects of OA dependent or independent of its pH. Gene expression by microarray analysis identified 2390 genes that showed changes in expression, as determined using an overall F-test P-value cut-off of 0.001. The additional requirement that at least one pairwise t-test false discovery rate (FDR)-corrected P value should be less than 0.001 reduced the list of the most highly significant differentially expressed genes to 1054. Independent of pH, OA altered the expression levels of 78 genes, with ferritin showing the strongest induction by OA. The combination of OA plus its low pH caused 1045 genes (99% of all significant genes) to be differentially expressed, with many of the up-regulated genes being related to basal defence, such as genes of the phenylpropanoid pathway and various cytochrome P450s. RNA-seq was also conducted on four samples: OxO and AC genotypes infiltrated with either OA pH 2.4 or water pH 2.4. The RNA-seq analysis also identified ferritin paralogues as being strongly induced by OA. As the expression of ferritin, a gene that encodes for an iron storage protein, is induced by free iron, these results suggest that S. sclerotiorum benefits from the ability of OA to free iron from plant proteins, as this induces host cell death, and also allows the uptake and

  15. Actin nemaline myopathy mouse reproduces disease, suggests other actin disease phenotypes and provides cautionary note on muscle transgene expression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gianina Ravenscroft

    Full Text Available Mutations in the skeletal muscle α-actin gene (ACTA1 cause congenital myopathies including nemaline myopathy, actin aggregate myopathy and rod-core disease. The majority of patients with ACTA1 mutations have severe hypotonia and do not survive beyond the age of one. A transgenic mouse model was generated expressing an autosomal dominant mutant (D286G of ACTA1 (identified in a severe nemaline myopathy patient fused with EGFP. Nemaline bodies were observed in multiple skeletal muscles, with serial sections showing these correlated to aggregates of the mutant skeletal muscle α-actin-EGFP. Isolated extensor digitorum longus and soleus muscles were significantly weaker than wild-type (WT muscle at 4 weeks of age, coinciding with the peak in structural lesions. These 4 week-old mice were ~30% less active on voluntary running wheels than WT mice. The α-actin-EGFP protein clearly demonstrated that the transgene was expressed equally in all myosin heavy chain (MHC fibre types during the early postnatal period, but subsequently became largely confined to MHCIIB fibres. Ringbinden fibres, internal nuclei and myofibrillar myopathy pathologies, not typical features in nemaline myopathy or patients with ACTA1 mutations, were frequently observed. Ringbinden were found in fast fibre predominant muscles of adult mice and were exclusively MHCIIB-positive fibres. Thus, this mouse model presents a reliable model for the investigation of the pathobiology of nemaline body formation and muscle weakness and for evaluation of potential therapeutic interventions. The occurrence of core-like regions, internal nuclei and ringbinden will allow analysis of the mechanisms underlying these lesions. The occurrence of ringbinden and features of myofibrillar myopathy in this mouse model of ACTA1 disease suggests that patients with these pathologies and no genetic explanation should be screened for ACTA1 mutations.

  16. Shared genetic variants suggest common pathways in allergy and autoimmune diseases

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kreiner-Møller, Eskil; Waage, Johannes; Standl, Marie

    2016-01-01

    Background: The relationship between allergy and autoimmune disorders is complex and poorly understood. Objective: To investigate commonalities in genetic loci and pathways between allergy and autoimmune diseases to elucidate shared disease mechanisms. Methods: We meta-analyzed two GWAS on self......-reported allergy and sensitization comprising a total of 62,330 individuals. These results were used to calculate enrichment for SNPs previously associated with autoimmune diseases. Furthermore, we probed for enrichment within genetic pathways and of transcription factor binding sites, and characterized...... commonalities in the variant burden on tissue-specific regulatory sites by calculating the enrichment of allergy SNPs falling in gene regulatory regions in various cells using Encode Roadmap DHS data, and compared the allergy data with all known diseases. Conclusion: Among 290 loci previously associated with 16...

  17. International Human Resource Management Education: A Survey of HR Professionals, Suggestions for Skill Dissemination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barclay, Lizabeth A.; Wagner-Marsh, Fraya; Loewe, G. Michael

    2002-01-01

    Surveyed a human resource professional association about training and interest in international human resources management. Based on results, offers recommendations for expanding coverage of this topic in credit and non-credit courses. (EV)

  18. Human Genome Sequencing in Health and Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzaga-Jauregui, Claudia; Lupski, James R.; Gibbs, Richard A.

    2013-01-01

    Following the “finished,” euchromatic, haploid human reference genome sequence, the rapid development of novel, faster, and cheaper sequencing technologies is making possible the era of personalized human genomics. Personal diploid human genome sequences have been generated, and each has contributed to our better understanding of variation in the human genome. We have consequently begun to appreciate the vastness of individual genetic variation from single nucleotide to structural variants. Translation of genome-scale variation into medically useful information is, however, in its infancy. This review summarizes the initial steps undertaken in clinical implementation of personal genome information, and describes the application of whole-genome and exome sequencing to identify the cause of genetic diseases and to suggest adjuvant therapies. Better analysis tools and a deeper understanding of the biology of our genome are necessary in order to decipher, interpret, and optimize clinical utility of what the variation in the human genome can teach us. Personal genome sequencing may eventually become an instrument of common medical practice, providing information that assists in the formulation of a differential diagnosis. We outline herein some of the remaining challenges. PMID:22248320

  19. Quantitative Susceptibility Mapping Suggests Altered Brain Iron in Premanifest Huntington Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Bergen, J M G; Hua, J; Unschuld, P G; Lim, I A L; Jones, C K; Margolis, R L; Ross, C A; van Zijl, P C M; Li, X

    2016-05-01

    In patients with premanifest (nonsymptomatic) and advanced Huntington disease, changes in brain iron levels in the basal ganglia have been previously reported, especially in the striatum. Quantitative susceptibility mapping by using MR phase imaging allows in vivo measurements of tissue magnetic susceptibility, which has been shown to correlate well with iron levels in brain gray matter and is believed to be more specific than other imaging-based iron measures. The purpose of this study was to investigate the use of magnetic susceptibility as a biomarker of disease progression. Fifteen subjects with premanifest Huntington disease and 16 age-matched healthy controls were scanned at 7T. Magnetic susceptibility, effective relaxation, and tissue volume in deep gray matter structures were quantified and compared with genetic and clinical measures. Subjects with premanifest Huntington disease showed significantly higher susceptibility values in the caudate nucleus, putamen, and globus pallidus, indicating increased iron levels in these structures. Significant decreases in magnetic susceptibility were found in the substantia nigra and hippocampus. In addition, significant volume loss (atrophy) and an increase effective relaxation were observed in the caudate nucleus and putamen. Susceptibility values in the caudate nucleus and putamen were found to be inversely correlated with structure volumes and directly correlated with the genetic burdens, represented by cytosine-adenine-guanine repeat age-product-scaled scores. The significant magnetic susceptibility differences between subjects with premanifest Huntington disease and controls and their correlation with genetic burden scores indicate the potential use of magnetic susceptibility as a biomarker of disease progression in premanifest Huntington disease. © 2016 by American Journal of Neuroradiology.

  20. Rheumatoid Arthritis-Associated Interstitial Lung Disease and Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis: Shared Mechanistic and Phenotypic Traits Suggest Overlapping Disease Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paulin, Francisco; Doyle, Tracy J; Fletcher, Elaine A; Ascherman, Dana P; Rosas, Ivan O

    2015-01-01

    The prevalence of clinically evident interstitial lung disease in patients with rheumatoid arthritis is approximately 10%. An additional 33% of undiagnosed patients have interstitial lung abnormalities that can be detected with high-resolution computed tomography. Rheumatoid arthritis-interstitial lung disease patients have three times the risk of death compared to those with rheumatoid arthritis occurring in the absence of interstitial lung disease, and the mortality related to interstitial lung disease is rising. Rheumatoid arthritis-interstitial lung disease is most commonly classified as the usual interstitial pneumonia pattern, overlapping mechanistically and phenotypically with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, but can occur in a non-usual interstitial pneumonia pattern, mainly nonspecific interstitial pneumonia. Based on this, we propose two possible pathways to explain the coexistence of rheumatoid arthritis and interstitial lung disease: (i) Rheumatoid arthritis-interstitial lung disease with a non-usual interstitial pneumonia pattern may come about when an immune response against citrullinated peptides taking place in another site (e.g. the joints) subsequently affects the lungs; (ii) Rheumatoid arthritis-interstitial lung disease with a usual interstitial pneumonia pattern may represent a disease process in which idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis-like pathology triggers an immune response against citrullinated proteins that promotes articular disease indicative of rheumatoid arthritis. More studies focused on elucidating the basic mechanisms leading to different sub-phenotypes of rheumatoid arthritis-interstitial lung disease and the overlap with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis are necessary to improve our understanding of the disease process and to define new therapeutic targets.

  1. Genetically Modified Pig Models for Human Diseases

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Nana Fan; Liangxue Lai

    2013-01-01

    Genetically modified animal models are important for understanding the pathogenesis of human disease and developing therapeutic strategies.Although genetically modified mice have been widely used to model human diseases,some of these mouse models do not replicate important disease symptoms or pathology.Pigs are more similar to humans than mice in anatomy,physiology,and genome.Thus,pigs are considered to be better animal models to mimic some human diseases.This review describes genetically modified pigs that have been used to model various diseases including neurological,cardiovascular,and diabetic disorders.We also discuss the development in gene modification technology that can facilitate the generation of transgenic pig models for human diseases.

  2. Conditional Lineage Ablation to Model Human Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Paul; Morley, Gregory; Huang, Qian; Fischer, Avi; Seiler, Stephanie; Horner, James W.; Factor, Stephen; Vaidya, Dhananjay; Jalife, Jose; Fishman, Glenn I.

    1998-09-01

    Cell loss contributes to the pathogenesis of many inherited and acquired human diseases. We have developed a system to conditionally ablate cells of any lineage and developmental stage in the mouse by regulated expression of the diphtheria toxin A (DTA) gene by using tetracycline-responsive promoters. As an example of this approach, we targeted expression of DTA to the hearts of adult mice to model structural abnormalities commonly observed in human cardiomyopathies. Induction of DTA expression resulted in cell loss, fibrosis, and chamber dilatation. As in many human cardiomyopathies, transgenic mice developed spontaneous arrhythmias in vivo, and programmed electrical stimulation of isolated-perfused transgenic hearts demonstrated a strikingly high incidence of spontaneous and inducible ventricular tachycardia. Affected mice showed marked perturbations of cardiac gap junction channel expression and localization, including a subset with disorganized epicardial activation patterns as revealed by optical action potential mapping. These studies provide important insights into mechanisms of arrhythmogenesis and suggest that conditional lineage ablation may have wide applicability for studies of disease pathogenesis.

  3. Studies suggest an association between maternal periodontal disease and pre-eclampsia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vergnes, Jean-Noel

    2008-01-01

    In this systematic review, several types of infections are identified and investigated: urinary tract infection, periodontal disease, Chlamydia pneumoniae infection, HIV infection, malaria and other persistent bacterial and viral infections. Separate analyses were conducted for each of them. This summary review will only focus on the link between pre-eclampsia and periodontitis, which was just a part of the original systematic review. MEDLINE, EMBASE, POPLINE, CINAHL, LILACS (all from inception to June 30, 2007), proceedings of international meetings on pre-eclampsia, bibliography of the retrieved articles, reviews, chapters in standard textbooks on hypertension in pregnancy, and contact with investigators involved in the field were used to identify relevant studies. No language restrictions were imposed. Cohort, case-control or cross-sectional studies with original data that evaluated the association between maternal periodontal disease and pre-eclampsia were included. Cases were defined as women suffering from hypertension plus proteinuria, after 20 weeks' gestation. Data were extracted from each study according to design, geographic location, sample size, gestational age when periodontal disease was diagnosed, definition and severity of pre-eclampsia, confounding factors controlled for, temporality of the association, and report of dose-response gradient. Studies included in the systematic review were also included in the meta-analysis if they reported Odds Ratio (OR) or Relative Risk (RR) estimates with their 95% Confidence Intervals (CIs), or provided the information necessary to calculate them. Results from different reports were combined to produce a pooled OR according to the Mantel-Haenszel method, using both fixed- and random-effects models. Heterogeneity was quantified with I(2) statistics. Studies were also quality assessed. Seven case-control studies and 2 cohort studies evaluated the association between periodontal disease and pre-eclampsia. Six

  4. Uncovering disease-disease relationships through the incomplete human interactome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menche, Jörg; Sharma, Amitabh; Kitsak, Maksim; Ghiassian, Susan; Vidal, Marc; Loscalzo, Joseph; Barabási, Albert-László

    2015-01-01

    According to the disease module hypothesis the cellular components associated with a disease segregate in the same neighborhood of the human interactome, the map of biologically relevant molecular interactions. Yet, given the incompleteness of the interactome and the limited knowledge of disease-associated genes, it is not obvious if the available data has sufficient coverage to map out modules associated with each disease. Here we derive mathematical conditions for the identifiability of disease modules and show that the network-based location of each disease module determines its pathobiological relationship to other diseases. For example, diseases with overlapping network modules show significant co-expression patterns, symptom similarity, and comorbidity, while diseases residing in separated network neighborhoods are clinically distinct. These tools represent an interactome-based platform to predict molecular commonalities between clinically related diseases, even if they do not share disease genes. PMID:25700523

  5. Developing global climate anomalies suggest potential disease risks for 2006 – 2007

    OpenAIRE

    Tucker Compton J.; Small Jennifer; Chretien Jean-Paul; Anyamba Assaf; Linthicum Kenneth J

    2006-01-01

    Abstract Background El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) related climate anomalies have been shown to have an impact on infectious disease outbreaks. The Climate Prediction Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA/CPC) has recently issued an unscheduled El Niño advisory, indicating that warmer than normal sea surface temperatures across the equatorial eastern Pacific may have pronounced impacts on global tropical precipitation patterns extending into the northern hem...

  6. The Microbiota, Chemical Symbiosis, and Human Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Redinbo, Matthew R.

    2014-01-01

    Our understanding of mammalian-microbial mutualism has expanded by combing microbial sequencing with evolving molecular and cellular methods, and unique model systems. Here, the recent literature linking the microbiota to diseases of three of the key mammalian mucosal epithelial compartments – nasal, lung and gastrointestinal (GI) tract – is reviewed with a focus on new knowledge about the taxa, species, proteins and chemistry that promote health and impact progression toward disease. The information presented is further organized by specific diseases now associated with the microbiota:, Staphylococcus aureus infection and rhinosinusitis in the nasal-sinus mucosa; cystic fibrosis (CF), chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD), and asthma in the pulmonary tissues. For the vast and microbially dynamic GI compartment, several disorders are considered, including obesity, atherosclerosis, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, drug toxicity, and even autism. Our appreciation of the chemical symbiosis ongoing between human systems and the microbiota continues to grow, and suggest new opportunities for modulating this symbiosis using designed interventions. PMID:25305474

  7. Incomplete lineage sorting patterns among human, chimpanzee and orangutan suggest recent orangutan speciation and widespread selection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hobolth, Asger; Dutheil, Julien; Hawks, John

    2011-01-01

    We search the complete orangutan genome for regions where humans are more closely related to orangutans than to chimpanzees due to incomplete lineage sorting (ILS) in the ancestor of human and chimpanzees. The search uses our recently developed coalescent HMM framework. We find ILS present in ~1%...

  8. Human Milk and Allergic Diseases: An Unsolved Puzzle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peroni, Diego G.; Boix-Amorós, Alba; Hsu, Peter S.; Van’t Land, Belinda; Skevaki, Chrysanthi; Collado, Maria Carmen; Garssen, Johan; Geddes, Donna T.; Nanan, Ralph; Slupsky, Carolyn; Wegienka, Ganesa; Kozyrskyj, Anita L.; Warner, John O.

    2017-01-01

    There is conflicting evidence on the protective role of breastfeeding in relation to the development of allergic sensitisation and allergic disease. Studies vary in methodology and definition of outcomes, which lead to considerable heterogeneity. Human milk composition varies both within and between individuals, which may partially explain conflicting data. It is known that human milk composition is very complex and contains variable levels of immune active molecules, oligosaccharides, metabolites, vitamins and other nutrients and microbial content. Existing evidence suggests that modulation of human breast milk composition has potential for preventing allergic diseases in early life. In this review, we discuss associations between breastfeeding/human milk composition and allergy development. PMID:28817095

  9. Parasitic diseases in humans transmitted by vectors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cholewiński, Marcin; Derda, Monika; Hadaś, Edward

    2015-01-01

    Despite the considerable progress of medicine, parasitic diseases still pose a great threat to human health and life. Among parasitic diseases, those transmitted by vectors, mainly arthropods, play a particular role. These diseases occur most frequently in the poorest countries and affect a vast part of the human population. They include malaria, babesiosis, trypanosomiasis, leishmaniasis and filariasis. This study presents those vector-transmitted diseases that are responsible for the greatest incidence and mortality of people on a global scale. Attention is focused primarily on diseases transmitted by mosquitoes, flies, Hemiptera and ticks.

  10. Modeling HLA associations with EBV-positive and -negative Hodgkin lymphoma suggests distinct mechanisms in disease pathogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Paul C D; McAulay, Karen A; Montgomery, Dorothy; Lake, Annette; Shield, Lesley; Gallagher, Alice; Little, Ann-Margaret; Shah, Anila; Marsh, Steven G E; Taylor, G Malcolm; Jarrett, Ruth F

    2015-09-01

    HLA genotyping and genome wide association studies provide strong evidence for associations between Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) alleles and classical Hodgkin lymphoma (cHL). Analysis of these associations is complicated by the extensive linkage disequilibrium within the major histocompatibility region and recent data suggesting that associations with EBV-positive and EBV-negative cHL are largely distinct. To distinguish independent and therefore potentially causal associations from associations confounded by linkage disequilibrium, we applied a variable selection regression modeling procedure to directly typed HLA class I and II genes and selected SNPs from EBV-stratified patient subgroups. In final models, HLA-A*01:01 and B*37:01 were associated with an increased risk of EBV-positive cHL whereas DRB1*15:01 and DPB1*01:01 were associated with decreased risk. Effects were independent of a prior history of infectious mononucleosis. For EBV-negative cHL the class II SNP rs6903608 remained the strongest predictor of disease risk after adjusting for the effects of common HLA alleles. Associations with "all cHL" and differences by case EBV status reflected the subgroup analysis. In conclusion, this study extends previous findings by identifying novel HLA associations with EBV-stratified subgroups of cHL, highlighting those alleles likely to be biologically relevant and strengthening evidence implicating genetic variation associated with the SNP rs6903608.

  11. Refractory myasthenia gravis, dysphagia and malnutrition: a case report to suggest disease-specific nutritional issues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cereda, Emanuele; Beltramolli, Dario; Pedrolli, Carlo; Costa, Antonio

    2009-10-01

    We describe a case of refractory myasthenia gravis with bulbar involvement and the nutritional treatment solutions proposed to treat the associated dysphagia and malnutrition. A 39-y-old woman with refractory myasthenia gravis was referred to our clinical nutrition unit for deteriorating dysphagia and progressive malnutrition. The first-line nutritional approach consisted of dietary counseling and thickened meals. Unfortunately, no adequate oral intake was achieved and an enteral nutrition treatment was proposed. A nasogastric tube was removed after a few days due to local pain and poor quality of life. Despite consistent weight loss and overt malnutrition, the patient refused percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy placement. Neurologic symptoms did not show any improvement but unexpectedly the patient's weight started to increase to previous values. Anamnestic recall revealed that the patient learned by herself how to position the nasogastric tube that is now temporarily used for formula infusion coinciding with neurologic poussés. Current guidelines consider chronic neurologic diseases with associated dysphagia, where refractory myesthania gravis has also been considered, a unique category. Chronic neurogenic dysphagia with high risk of aspiration, long-term inability to obtain adequate oral intakes, and malnutrition are established indications for percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy placement. However, patients may need different forms of nutritional intervention during the course of their illness and choices and indications should contemplate ethical reasons, clinical benefits, minimal risks, and acceptable quality of life. Minimally invasive intermittent enteral nutrition might be considered a possible clue for nutritional management of exacerbating dysphagia.

  12. Segregation analysis suggests that keratoconus is a complex non-mendelian disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kriszt, Agnes; Losonczy, Gergely; Berta, András; Vereb, György; Takács, Lili

    2014-11-01

    Complex segregation analysis of 60 unrelated sporadic keratoconus (KC) families was performed to reveal the presumed mode of inheritance in our dataset. Sixty probands, 212 family members and 212 age and gender matched healthy controls underwent clinical and videokeratographic examination. Family aggregation and distribution of videokeratography parameters were examined. Segregation of KSI, KISA and 6mm Fourier asymmetry alone or in covariate analysis with gender or the presence of Fleischer ring, exploring mendelian and non-mendelian models of inheritance was tested using complex segregation analysis with the S.A.G.E. program package. In 145 relatives of probands, the estimated prevalence of manifest KC was 7.6% (95% CI: 3.3-11.9) based on KISA index, indicating strong familial aggregation. All examined videokeratography indices were able to differentiate between KC and non-KC family members as well as normal controls (anova p 0.1) for all indices indicated the presence of a non-mendelian major gene effect (MG). Inclusion of Fleischer ring as covariate improved the fit of MG models. Mendelian, Sporadic and polygenic models were consistently rejected. Complex segregation analysis indicates a strong genetic contribution to the transmission of keratoconus. Inheritance is most probably due to a non-mendelian major gene effect. Low genotype-phenotype correlation in sporadic KC families can make linkage studies difficult, thus genome wide association studies, epigenetic and pathway analyses may provide more information on disease pathogenesis in non-familial keratoconus. © 2014 Acta Ophthalmologica Scandinavica Foundation. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. Fractal 1/f Dynamics Suggest Entanglement of Measurement and Human Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holden, John G.; Choi, Inhyun; Amazeen, Polemnia G.; Van Orden, Guy

    2011-01-01

    Variability of repeated measurements in human performances exhibits fractal 1/f noise. Yet the relative strength of this fractal pattern varies widely across conditions, tasks, and individuals. Four experiments illustrate how subtle details of the conditions of measurement change the fractal patterns observed across task conditions. The results…

  14. Transcriptional interactions suggest niche segregation among microorganisms in the human gut

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Plichta, Damian Rafal; Juncker, Agnieszka; dos Santos, Marcelo Bertalan Quintanilha

    2016-01-01

    The human gastrointestinal (GI) tract is the habitat for hundreds of microbial species, of which many cannot be cultivated readily, presumably because of the dependencies between species 1. Studies of microbial co-occurrence in the gut have indicated community substructures that may reflect funct...

  15. Social Networking Web Sites and Human Resource Personnel: Suggestions for Job Searches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Sherry J.; Roach, Terry

    2009-01-01

    Social Networking Web sites (SNWs) are now being used as reference checks by human resource personnel. For this reason, SNW users, particularly university students and other soon-to-be job applicants, should ask the following questions: Am I loading information that I want the world to see? Is this really a picture that shows me in the best light?…

  16. Social Networking Web Sites and Human Resource Personnel: Suggestions for Job Searches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Sherry J.; Roach, Terry

    2009-01-01

    Social Networking Web sites (SNWs) are now being used as reference checks by human resource personnel. For this reason, SNW users, particularly university students and other soon-to-be job applicants, should ask the following questions: Am I loading information that I want the world to see? Is this really a picture that shows me in the best light?…

  17. Stem cell differentiation and human liver disease

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Wen-Li Zhou; Claire N Medine; Liang Zhu; David C Hay

    2012-01-01

    Human stem cells are scalable cell populations capable of cellular differentiation.This makes them a very attractive in vitro cellular resource and in theory provides unlimited amounts of primary cells.Such an approach has the potential to improve our understanding of human biology and treating disease.In the future it may be possible to deploy novel stem cell-based approaches to treat human liver diseases.In recent years,efficient hepatic differentiation from human stem cells has been achieved by several research groups including our own.In this review we provide an overview of the field and discuss the future potential and limitations of stem cell technology.

  18. New class of gene-termini-associated human RNAs suggests a novel RNA copying mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kapranov, Philipp; Ozsolak, Fatih; Kim, Sang Woo; Foissac, Sylvain; Lipson, Doron; Hart, Chris; Roels, Steve; Borel, Christelle; Antonarakis, Stylianos E; Monaghan, A Paula; John, Bino; Milos, Patrice M

    2010-07-29

    Small (<200 nucleotide) RNA (sRNA) profiling of human cells using various technologies demonstrates unexpected complexity of sRNAs with hundreds of thousands of sRNA species present. Genetic and in vitro studies show that these RNAs are not merely degradation products of longer transcripts but could indeed have a function. Furthermore, profiling of RNAs, including the sRNAs, can reveal not only novel transcripts, but also make clear predictions about the existence and properties of novel biochemical pathways operating in a cell. For example, sRNA profiling in human cells indicated the existence of an unknown capping mechanism operating on cleaved RNA, a biochemical component of which was later identified. Here we show that human cells contain a novel type of sRNA that has non-genomically encoded 5' poly(U) tails. The presence of these RNAs at the termini of genes, specifically at the very 3' ends of known mRNAs, strongly argues for the presence of a yet uncharacterized endogenous biochemical pathway in cells that can copy RNA. We show that this pathway can operate on multiple genes, with specific enrichment towards transcript-encoding components of the translational machinery. Finally, we show that genes are also flanked by sense, 3' polyadenylated sRNAs that are likely to be capped.

  19. Suggestions for automatic quantitation of endoscopic image analysis to improve detection of small intestinal pathology in celiac disease patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ciaccio, Edward J; Bhagat, Govind; Lewis, Suzanne K; Green, Peter H

    2015-10-01

    Although many groups have attempted to develop an automated computerized method to detect pathology of the small intestinal mucosa caused by celiac disease, the efforts have thus far failed. This is due in part to the occult presence of the disease. When pathological evidence of celiac disease exists in the small bowel it is visually often patchy and subtle. Due to presence of extraneous substances such as air bubbles and opaque fluids, the use of computerized automation methods have only been partially successful in detecting the hallmarks of the disease in the small intestine-villous atrophy, fissuring, and a mottled appearance. By using a variety of computerized techniques and assigning a weight or vote to each technique, it is possible to improve the detection of abnormal regions which are indicative of celiac disease, and of treatment progress in diagnosed patients. Herein a paradigm is suggested for improving the efficacy of automated methods for measuring celiac disease manifestation in the small intestinal mucosa. The suggestions are applicable to both standard and videocapsule endoscopic imaging, since both methods could potentially benefit from computerized quantitation to improve celiac disease diagnosis.

  20. Reduced penetrance in human inherited disease

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Rabah M. Shawky

    2014-01-31

    Jan 31, 2014 ... tant role in cellular senescence, tumorigenesis and in several diseases ... A correlation between epigenetic DNA modifications and human life span ... Most studies demonstrated that aging is associated with a relaxation in ...

  1. Regulating private human suborbital flight at the international and European level: Tendencies and suggestions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masson-Zwaan, Tanja; Moro-Aguilar, Rafael

    2013-12-01

    In the context of the FAST20XX project (Future High-Altitude High-Speed Transport) that started in 2009 under the 7th Framework Programme of the European Union (EU), the authors reexamined the legal status of private human suborbital flight, and researched whether it might be regulated as aviation or as spaceflight. International space law is ambiguous as to accommodating suborbital activities. While some provisions of the UN outer space treaties would seem to exclude them, generally there is not any explicit condition in terms of reaching orbit as a requirement for application. International air law presents equal difficulties in dealing with this activity. The classic definition of "aircraft" as contained in the Annexes to the Chicago Convention does not really encompass the kind of rocket-powered vehicles that are envisaged here. As a result, it is unclear whether the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS), the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), or both could be involved in an eventual international regulation of suborbital flight. In the absence of a uniform international regime, each state has the sovereign right to regulate human suborbital flights operating within its airspace. So far, two practical solutions have been realised or proposed, and will be analyzed. On the one hand, the USA granted power for regulation and licensing over private human suborbital flight to the Office of Commercial Space Transportation of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA/AST). Subsequent regulations by the FAA have set out a series of requirements for companies that want to operate these flights, enabling a market to develop. On the other side of the Atlantic, both the European Space Agency (ESA) and a group of representatives of the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) of the European Union (EU) seem to rather regard this activity as aviation, potentially subject to the regulation and certification competences of EASA

  2. Physiochemical basis of human degenerative disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zeliger Harold I.

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The onset of human degenerative diseases in humans, including type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, neurological disorders, neurodevelopmental disease and neurodegenerative disease has been shown to be related to exposures to persistent organic pollutants, including polychlorinated biphenyls, chlorinated pesticides, polybrominated diphenyl ethers and others, as well as to polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons, phthalates, bisphenol-A and other aromatic lipophilic species. The onset of these diseases has also been related to exposures to transition metal ions. A physiochemical mechanism for the onset of degenerative environmental disease dependent upon exposure to a combination of lipophilic aromatic hydrocarbons and transition metal ions is proposed here. The findings reported here also, for the first time, explain why aromatic hydrocarbons exhibit greater toxicity than aliphatic hydrocarbons of equal carbon numbers.

  3. Human Echinococcosis: A Neglected Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    António Menezes da Silva

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Echinococcosis is among the most neglected parasitic diseases. Development of new drugs and other treatment modalities receives very little attention, if any. In most developed countries, Cystic Echinococcosis (CE is an imported disease of very low incidence and prevalence and is found almost exclusively in migrants from endemic regions. In endemic regions, predominantly settings with limited resources, patient numbers are high. Whole communities do not have access to appropriate treatment. The choice of treatment modalities is limited because of poor infrastructure and shortage of equipment and drugs. In this context, CE meets the criteria for a neglected disease. Furthermore, the terminology related to the designations around the parasite, its evolution and some therapeutic procedures is not uniform and sometimes inappropriate terms and wrong designations are used based on incorrect concepts. Although all of us know the different aspects of the disease it is pertinent to remember some important points and, above all, to clarify some aspects concerning the hydatid cyst's nomenclature in order to understand better the therapeutic options in the liver locations, particularly the different surgical approaches.

  4. Connectivity analysis of suggestive brain areas involved in middle ear pressure regulation in humans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    SA, Sami; Gaihede, Michael

    2010-01-01

    , MEP counter-regulation presented as Eustachian tube openings with steep and fast pressure changes toward 0 Pa, whereas in others, gradual and slow pressure changes presented related to the mastoid; these changes sometimes crossed 0 Pa into opposite pressures. In many cases, combinations......HYPOTHESIS:: Middle ear pressure (MEP) is actively regulated by both the Eustachian tube and the mastoid air cell system. BACKGROUND:: MEP is a highly significant factor involved in many clinical conditions related to otitis media. Basic knowledge on its overall regulation remains insufficient...... of these distinct mechanisms were found. CONCLUSION:: The human mastoid as well as the Eustachian tube was capable of active counter-regulation of the MEP in short-term experimental pressure changes in healthy ears. Thus, these 2 systems seemed to function in a complementary way, where the mastoid was related...

  5. Ancient human genomes suggest three ancestral populations for present-day Europeans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lazaridis, Iosif; Patterson, Nick; Mittnik, Alissa; Renaud, Gabriel; Mallick, Swapan; Kirsanow, Karola; Sudmant, Peter H.; Schraiber, Joshua G.; Castellano, Sergi; Lipson, Mark; Berger, Bonnie; Economou, Christos; Bollongino, Ruth; Fu, Qiaomei; Bos, Kirsten I.; Nordenfelt, Susanne; Li, Heng; de Filippo, Cesare; Prüfer, Kay; Sawyer, Susanna; Posth, Cosimo; Haak, Wolfgang; Hallgren, Fredrik; Fornander, Elin; Rohland, Nadin; Delsate, Dominique; Francken, Michael; Guinet, Jean-Michel; Wahl, Joachim; Ayodo, George; Babiker, Hamza A.; Bailliet, Graciela; Balanovska, Elena; Balanovsky, Oleg; Barrantes, Ramiro; Bedoya, Gabriel; Ben-Ami, Haim; Bene, Judit; Berrada, Fouad; Bravi, Claudio M.; Brisighelli, Francesca; Busby, George B. J.; Cali, Francesco; Churnosov, Mikhail; Cole, David E. C.; Corach, Daniel; Damba, Larissa; van Driem, George; Dryomov, Stanislav; Dugoujon, Jean-Michel; Fedorova, Sardana A.; Romero, Irene Gallego; Gubina, Marina; Hammer, Michael; Henn, Brenna M.; Hervig, Tor; Hodoglugil, Ugur; Jha, Aashish R.; Karachanak-Yankova, Sena; Khusainova, Rita; Khusnutdinova, Elza; Kittles, Rick; Kivisild, Toomas; Klitz, William; Kučinskas, Vaidutis; Kushniarevich, Alena; Laredj, Leila; Litvinov, Sergey; Loukidis, Theologos; Mahley, Robert W.; Melegh, Béla; Metspalu, Ene; Molina, Julio; Mountain, Joanna; Näkkäläjärvi, Klemetti; Nesheva, Desislava; Nyambo, Thomas; Osipova, Ludmila; Parik, Jüri; Platonov, Fedor; Posukh, Olga; Romano, Valentino; Rothhammer, Francisco; Rudan, Igor; Ruizbakiev, Ruslan; Sahakyan, Hovhannes; Sajantila, Antti; Salas, Antonio; Starikovskaya, Elena B.; Tarekegn, Ayele; Toncheva, Draga; Turdikulova, Shahlo; Uktveryte, Ingrida; Utevska, Olga; Vasquez, René; Villena, Mercedes; Voevoda, Mikhail; Winkler, Cheryl; Yepiskoposyan, Levon; Zalloua, Pierre; Zemunik, Tatijana; Cooper, Alan; Capelli, Cristian; Thomas, Mark G.; Ruiz-Linares, Andres; Tishkoff, Sarah A.; Singh, Lalji; Thangaraj, Kumarasamy; Villems, Richard; Comas, David; Sukernik, Rem; Metspalu, Mait; Meyer, Matthias; Eichler, Evan E.; Burger, Joachim; Slatkin, Montgomery; Pääbo, Svante; Kelso, Janet; Reich, David; Krause, Johannes

    2014-01-01

    We sequenced the genomes of a ~7,000 year old farmer from Germany and eight ~8,000 year old hunter-gatherers from Luxembourg and Sweden. We analyzed these and other ancient genomes1–4 with 2,345 contemporary humans to show that most present Europeans derive from at least three highly differentiated populations: West European Hunter-Gatherers (WHG), who contributed ancestry to all Europeans but not to Near Easterners; Ancient North Eurasians (ANE) related to Upper Paleolithic Siberians3, who contributed to both Europeans and Near Easterners; and Early European Farmers (EEF), who were mainly of Near Eastern origin but also harbored WHG-related ancestry. We model these populations’ deep relationships and show that EEF had ~44% ancestry from a “Basal Eurasian” population that split prior to the diversification of other non-African lineages. PMID:25230663

  6. Molecular Pathology of Human Prion Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Prion diseases are fatal neurodegenerative conditions in humans and animals. In this review, we summarize the molecular background of phenotypic variability, relation of prion protein (PrP to other proteins associated with neurodegenerative diseases, and pathogenesis of neuronal vulnerability. PrP exists in different forms that may be present in both diseased and non-diseased brain, however, abundant disease-associated PrP together with tissue pathology characterizes prion diseases and associates with transmissibility. Prion diseases have different etiological background with distinct pathogenesis and phenotype. Mutations of the prion protein gene are associated with genetic forms. The codon 129 polymorphism in combination with the Western blot pattern of PrP after proteinase K digestion serves as a basis for molecular subtyping of sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. Tissue damage may result from several parallel, interacting or subsequent pathways that involve cellular systems associated with synapses, protein processing, oxidative stress, autophagy, and apoptosis.

  7. [Primary human demodicosis. A disease sui generis].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, C-K; Zink, A; Wei, K-J; Dzika, E; Plewig, G; Chen, W

    2015-03-01

    Human Demodex mites (Demodex folliculorum and Demodex brevis) are unique in that they are an obligate human ectoparasite that can inhabit the pilosebaceous unit lifelong without causing obvious host immune response in most cases. The mode of symbiosis between humans and human Demodex mites is unclear, while the pathogenicity of human Demodex mites in many inflammatory skin diseases is now better understood. Primary human demodicosis is a skin disease sui generis not associated with local or systemic immunosuppression. Diagnosis is often underestimated and differentiation from folliculitis, papulopustular rosacea and perioral dermatitis is not always straightforward. Dependent on the morphology and degree of inflammation, the clinical manifestations can be classified into spinulate, papulopustular, nodulocystic, crustic and fulminant demodicosis. Therapy success can be achieved only with acaricides/arachidicides. The effective doses, optimal regimen and antimicrobial resistance remain to be determined.

  8. Dietary options and behavior suggested by plant biomarker evidence in an early human habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magill, Clayton R.; Ashley, Gail M.; Domínguez-Rodrigo, Manuel; Freeman, Katherine H.

    2016-03-01

    The availability of plants and freshwater shapes the diets and social behavior of chimpanzees, our closest living relative. However, limited evidence about the spatial relationships shared between ancestral human (hominin) remains, edible resources, refuge, and freshwater leaves the influence of local resources on our species' evolution open to debate. Exceptionally well-preserved organic geochemical fossils-biomarkers-preserved in a soil horizon resolve different plant communities at meter scales across a contiguous 25,000 m2 archaeological land surface at Olduvai Gorge from about 2 Ma. Biomarkers reveal hominins had access to aquatic plants and protective woods in a patchwork landscape, which included a spring-fed wetland near a woodland that both were surrounded by open grassland. Numerous cut-marked animal bones are located within the wooded area, and within meters of wetland vegetation delineated by biomarkers for ferns and sedges. Taken together, plant biomarkers, clustered bone debris, and hominin remains define a clear spatial pattern that places animal butchery amid the refuge of an isolated forest patch and near freshwater with diverse edible resources.

  9. Modeling of the human rhinovirus C capsid suggests possible causes for antiviral drug resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basta, Holly A; Ashraf, Shamaila; Sgro, Jean-Yves; Bochkov, Yury A; Gern, James E; Palmenberg, Ann C

    2014-01-05

    Human rhinoviruses of the RV-C species are recently discovered pathogens with greater clinical significance than isolates in the RV-A+B species. The RV-C cannot be propagated in typical culture systems; so much of the virology is necessarily derivative, relying on comparative genomics, relative to the better studied RV-A+B. We developed a bioinformatics-based structural model for a C15 isolate. The model showed the VP1-3 capsid proteins retain their fundamental cores relative to the RV-A+B, but conserved, internal RV-C residues affect the shape and charge of the VP1 hydrophobic pocket that confers antiviral drug susceptibility. When predictions of the model were tested in organ cultures or ALI systems with recombinant C15 virus, there was a resistance to capsid-binding drugs, including pleconaril, BTA-188, WIN56291, WIN52035 and WIN52084. Unique to all RV-C, the model predicts conserved amino acids within the pocket and capsid surface pore leading to the pocket may correlate with this activity.

  10. Genomic Analysis of the Human Gut Microbiome Suggests Novel Enzymes Involved in Quinone Biosynthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ravcheev, Dmitry A.; Thiele, Ines

    2016-01-01

    Ubiquinone and menaquinone are membrane lipid-soluble carriers of electrons that are essential for cellular respiration. Eukaryotic cells can synthesize ubiquinone but not menaquinone, whereas prokaryotes can synthesize both quinones. So far, most of the human gut microbiome (HGM) studies have been based on metagenomic analysis. Here, we applied an analysis of individual HGM genomes to the identification of ubiquinone and menaquinone biosynthetic pathways. In our opinion, the shift from metagenomics to analysis of individual genomes is a pivotal milestone in investigation of bacterial communities, including the HGM. The key results of this study are as follows. (i) The distribution of the canonical pathways in the HGM genomes was consistent with previous reports and with the distribution of the quinone-dependent reductases for electron acceptors. (ii) The comparative genomics analysis identified four alternative forms of the previously known enzymes for quinone biosynthesis. (iii) Genes for the previously unknown part of the futalosine pathway were identified, and the corresponding biochemical reactions were proposed. We discuss the remaining gaps in the menaquinone and ubiquinone pathways in some of the microbes, which indicate the existence of further alternate genes or routes. Together, these findings provide further insight into the biosynthesis of quinones in bacteria and the physiology of the HGM. PMID:26904004

  11. Cis-regulatory mutations in human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epstein, Douglas J

    2009-07-01

    Cis-acting regulatory sequences are required for the proper temporal and spatial control of gene expression. Variation in gene expression is highly heritable and a significant determinant of human disease susceptibility. The diversity of human genetic diseases attributed, in whole or in part, to mutations in non-coding regulatory sequences is on the rise. Improvements in genome-wide methods of associating genetic variation with human disease and predicting DNA with cis-regulatory potential are two of the major reasons for these recent advances. This review will highlight select examples from the literature that have successfully integrated genetic and genomic approaches to uncover the molecular basis by which cis-regulatory mutations alter gene expression and contribute to human disease. The fine mapping of disease-causing variants has led to the discovery of novel cis-acting regulatory elements that, in some instances, are located as far away as 1.5 Mb from the target gene. In other cases, the prior knowledge of the regulatory landscape surrounding the gene of interest aided in the selection of enhancers for mutation screening. The success of these studies should provide a framework for following up on the large number of genome-wide association studies that have identified common variants in non-coding regions of the genome that associate with increased risk of human diseases including, diabetes, autism, Crohn's, colorectal cancer, and asthma, to name a few.

  12. Functional magnetic resonance imaging suggests automatization of the cortical response to inspiratory threshold loading in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raux, Mathieu; Tyvaert, Louise; Ferreira, Michael; Kindler, Félix; Bardinet, Eric; Karachi, Carine; Morelot-Panzini, Capucine; Gotman, Jean; Pike, G Bruce; Koski, Lisa; Similowski, Thomas

    2013-12-01

    Inspiratory threshold loading (ITL) induces cortical activation. It is sustained over time and is resistant to distraction, suggesting automaticity. We hypothesized that ITL-induced changes in cerebral activation may differ between single-breath ITL and continuous ITL, with differences resembling those observed after cortical automatization of motor tasks. We analyzed the brain blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) signal of 11 naive healthy volunteers during 5 min of random, single-breath ITL and 5 min of continuous ITL. Single-breath ITL increased BOLD in many areas (premotor cortices, bilateral insula, cerebellum, reticular formation of the lateral mesencephalon) and decreased BOLD in regions co-localizing with the default mode network. Continuous ITL induced signal changes in a limited number of areas (supplementary motor area). These differences are comparable to those observed before and after overlearning of motor tasks. We conclude that the respiratory-related cortical activation observed in response to ITL is likely due to automated, attention-independent mechanisms. Also, ITL activates cortical circuits right from the first breath.

  13. Widespread Epigenetic Abnormalities Suggest a Broad DNA Methylation Erasure Defect in Abnormal Human Sperm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siegmund, Kimberly; Yang, Allen; Laird, Peter W.; Sokol, Rebecca Z.

    2007-01-01

    Background Male-factor infertility is a common condition, and etiology is unknown for a high proportion of cases. Abnormal epigenetic programming of the germline is proposed as a possible mechanism compromising spermatogenesis of some men currently diagnosed with idiopathic infertility. During germ cell maturation and gametogenesis, cells of the germ line undergo extensive epigenetic reprogramming. This process involves widespread erasure of somatic-like patterns of DNA methylation followed by establishment of sex-specific patterns by de novo DNA methylation. Incomplete reprogramming of the male germ line could, in theory, result in both altered sperm DNA methylation and compromised spermatogenesis. Methodology/Principal Finding We determined concentration, motility and morphology of sperm in semen samples collected by male members of couples attending an infertility clinic. Using MethyLight and Illumina assays we measured methylation of DNA isolated from purified sperm from the same samples. Methylation at numerous sequences was elevated in DNA from poor quality sperm. Conclusions This is the first report of a broad epigenetic defect associated with abnormal semen parameters. Our results suggest that the underlying mechanism for these epigenetic changes may be improper erasure of DNA methylation during epigenetic reprogramming of the male germ line. PMID:18074014

  14. Widespread epigenetic abnormalities suggest a broad DNA methylation erasure defect in abnormal human sperm.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sahar Houshdaran

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Male-factor infertility is a common condition, and etiology is unknown for a high proportion of cases. Abnormal epigenetic programming of the germline is proposed as a possible mechanism compromising spermatogenesis of some men currently diagnosed with idiopathic infertility. During germ cell maturation and gametogenesis, cells of the germ line undergo extensive epigenetic reprogramming. This process involves widespread erasure of somatic-like patterns of DNA methylation followed by establishment of sex-specific patterns by de novo DNA methylation. Incomplete reprogramming of the male germ line could, in theory, result in both altered sperm DNA methylation and compromised spermatogenesis. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDING: We determined concentration, motility and morphology of sperm in semen samples collected by male members of couples attending an infertility clinic. Using MethyLight and Illumina assays we measured methylation of DNA isolated from purified sperm from the same samples. Methylation at numerous sequences was elevated in DNA from poor quality sperm. CONCLUSIONS: This is the first report of a broad epigenetic defect associated with abnormal semen parameters. Our results suggest that the underlying mechanism for these epigenetic changes may be improper erasure of DNA methylation during epigenetic reprogramming of the male germ line.

  15. Linking adult hippocampal neurogenesis with human physiology and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowers, Megan; Jessberger, Sebastian

    2016-07-01

    We here review the existing evidence linking adult hippocampal neurogenesis and human brain function in physiology and disease. Furthermore, we aim to point out where evidence is missing, highlight current promising avenues of investigation, and suggest future tools and approaches to foster the link between life-long neurogenesis and human brain function. Developmental Dynamics 245:702-709, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. DEGAS: de novo discovery of dysregulated pathways in human diseases.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor Ulitsky

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Molecular studies of the human disease transcriptome typically involve a search for genes whose expression is significantly dysregulated in sick individuals compared to healthy controls. Recent studies have found that only a small number of the genes in human disease-related pathways show consistent dysregulation in sick individuals. However, those studies found that some pathway genes are affected in most sick individuals, but genes can differ among individuals. While a pathway is usually defined as a set of genes known to share a specific function, pathway boundaries are frequently difficult to assign, and methods that rely on such definition cannot discover novel pathways. Protein interaction networks can potentially be used to overcome these problems. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We present DEGAS (DysrEgulated Gene set Analysis via Subnetworks, a method for identifying connected gene subnetworks significantly enriched for genes that are dysregulated in specimens of a disease. We applied DEGAS to seven human diseases and obtained statistically significant results that appear to home in on compact pathways enriched with hallmarks of the diseases. In Parkinson's disease, we provide novel evidence for involvement of mRNA splicing, cell proliferation, and the 14-3-3 complex in the disease progression. DEGAS is available as part of the MATISSE software package (http://acgt.cs.tau.ac.il/matisse. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The subnetworks identified by DEGAS can provide a signature of the disease potentially useful for diagnosis, pinpoint possible pathways affected by the disease, and suggest targets for drug intervention.

  17. Whole-genome sequencing suggests a chemokine gene cluster that modifies age at onset in familial Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lalli, M A; Bettcher, B M; Arcila, M L; Garcia, G; Guzman, C; Madrigal, L; Ramirez, L; Acosta-Uribe, J; Baena, A; Wojta, K J; Coppola, G; Fitch, R; de Both, M D; Huentelman, M J; Reiman, E M; Brunkow, M E; Glusman, G; Roach, J C; Kao, A W; Lopera, F; Kosik, K S

    2015-11-01

    We have sequenced the complete genomes of 72 individuals affected with early-onset familial Alzheimer's disease caused by an autosomal dominant, highly penetrant mutation in the presenilin-1 (PSEN1) gene, and performed genome-wide association testing to identify variants that modify age at onset (AAO) of Alzheimer's disease. Our analysis identified a haplotype of single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) on chromosome 17 within a chemokine gene cluster associated with delayed onset of mild-cognitive impairment and dementia. Individuals carrying this haplotype had a mean AAO of mild-cognitive impairment at 51.0 ± 5.2 years compared with 41.1 ± 7.4 years for those without these SNPs. This haplotype thus appears to modify Alzheimer's AAO, conferring a large (~10 years) protective effect. The associated locus harbors several chemokines including eotaxin-1 encoded by CCL11, and the haplotype includes a missense polymorphism in this gene. Validating this association, we found plasma eotaxin-1 levels were correlated with disease AAO in an independent cohort from the University of California San Francisco Memory and Aging Center. In this second cohort, the associated haplotype disrupted the typical age-associated increase of eotaxin-1 levels, suggesting a complex regulatory role for this haplotype in the general population. Altogether, these results suggest eotaxin-1 as a novel modifier of Alzheimer's disease AAO and open potential avenues for therapy.

  18. MicroRNA in human cancer and chronic inflammatory diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanwar, Jagat R; Mahidhara, Ganesh; Kanwar, Rupinder K

    2010-06-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are the non-coding RNAs that act as post-translational regulators to their complimentary messenger RNAs (mRNA). Due to their specific gene silencing property, miRNAs have been implicated in a number of cellular and developmental processes. Also, it has been proposed that a particular set of miRNA spectrum is expressed only in a particular type of tissue. Many interesting findings related to the differential expression of miRNAs in various human diseases including several types of cancers, neurodegenerative diseases and metabolic diseases have been reported. Deregulation of miRNA expression in different types of human diseases and the roles various miRNAs play as tumour suppressors as well as oncogenes, suggest their contribution to cancer and/or in other disease development. These findings have possible implications in the development of diagnostics and/or therapeutics in human malignancies. In this review, we discuss various miRNAs that are differentially expressed in human chronic inflammatory diseases, neurodegenerative diseases, cancer and the further prospective development of miRNA based diagnostics and therapeutics.

  19. Engineering large animal models of human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitelaw, C Bruce A; Sheets, Timothy P; Lillico, Simon G; Telugu, Bhanu P

    2016-01-01

    The recent development of gene editing tools and methodology for use in livestock enables the production of new animal disease models. These tools facilitate site-specific mutation of the genome, allowing animals carrying known human disease mutations to be produced. In this review, we describe the various gene editing tools and how they can be used for a range of large animal models of diseases. This genomic technology is in its infancy but the expectation is that through the use of gene editing tools we will see a dramatic increase in animal model resources available for both the study of human disease and the translation of this knowledge into the clinic. Comparative pathology will be central to the productive use of these animal models and the successful translation of new therapeutic strategies.

  20. Human glia can both induce and rescue aspects of disease phenotype in Huntington disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Benraiss, Abdellatif; Wang, Su; Herrlinger, Stephanie

    2016-01-01

    (hGPCs), derived from either human embryonic stem cells or mHTT-transduced fetal hGPCs. Here we show that mHTT glia can impart disease phenotype to normal mice, since mice engrafted intrastriatally with mHTT hGPCs exhibit worse motor performance than controls, and striatal neurons in mHTT glial......The causal contribution of glial pathology to Huntington disease (HD) has not been heavily explored. To define the contribution of glia to HD, we established human HD glial chimeras by neonatally engrafting immunodeficient mice with mutant huntingtin (mHTT)-expressing human glial progenitor cells...... survival in R6/2 HD mice. These observations suggest a causal role for glia in HD, and further suggest a cell-based strategy for disease amelioration in this disorder....

  1. DUF1220 domains, cognitive disease, and human brain evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumas, L; Sikela, J M

    2009-01-01

    We have established that human genome sequences encoding a novel protein domain, DUF1220, show a dramatically elevated copy number in the human lineage (>200 copies in humans vs. 1 in mouse/rat) and may be important to human evolutionary adaptation. Copy-number variations (CNVs) in the 1q21.1 region, where most DUF1220 sequences map, have now been implicated in numerous diseases associated with cognitive dysfunction, including autism, autism spectrum disorder, mental retardation, schizophrenia, microcephaly, and macrocephaly. We report here that these disease-related 1q21.1 CNVs either encompass or are directly flanked by DUF1220 sequences and exhibit a dosage-related correlation with human brain size. Microcephaly-producing 1q21.1 CNVs are deletions, whereas macrocephaly-producing 1q21.1 CNVs are duplications. Similarly, 1q21.1 deletions and smaller brain size are linked with schizophrenia, whereas 1q21.1 duplications and larger brain size are associated with autism. Interestingly, these two diseases are thought to be phenotypic opposites. These data suggest a model which proposes that (1) DUF1220 domain copy number may be involved in influencing human brain size and (2) the evolutionary advantage of rapidly increasing DUF1220 copy number in the human lineage has resulted in favoring retention of the high genomic instability of the 1q21.1 region, which, in turn, has precipitated a spectrum of recurrent human brain and developmental disorders.

  2. Reg gene family and human diseases

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yu-Wei Zhang; Liu-Song Ding; Mao-De Lai

    2003-01-01

    Regenerating gene (Reg or REG) family, within the superfamily of C-type lectin, is mainly involved in the liver,pancreatic, gastric and intestinal cell proliferation or differentiation. Considerable attention has focused on Reg family and its structurally related molecules. Over the last 15 years, 17 members of the Reg family have been cloned and sequenced. They have been considered as members of a conserved protein family sharing structural and some functional properties being involved in injury, inflammation,diabetes and carcinogenesis. We previously identified Reg Ⅳ as a strong candidate for a gene that was highly expressed in colorectal adenoma when compared to normal mucosa based on suppression subtractive hybridization (SSH),reverse Northern blot, semi-quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR)and Northern blot. In situ hybridization results further support that overexpression of Reg Ⅳ may be an early event in colorectal carcinogenesis. We suggest that detection of Reg Ⅳ overexpression might be useful in the early diagnosis of carcinomatous transformation of adenoma.This review summarizes the roles of Reg family in diseases in the literature as well as our recent results of Reg Ⅳ in colorectal cancer. The biological properties of Reg family and its possible roles in human diseases are discussed. We particularly focus on the roles of Reg family as sensitive reactants of tissue injury, prognostic indicators of tumor survival and early biomarkers of carcinogenesis. In addition to our current understanding of Reg gene functions, we postulate that there might be relationships between Reg family and microsatellite instability, apoptosis and cancer with a poor prognosis. Investigation of the correlation between tumor Reg expression and survival rate, and analysis of the Reg gene status in human maliganancies, are required to elucidate the biologic consequences of Reg gene expression, the implications for Reg gene regulation of cell growth, tumorigenesis

  3. Modeling human muscle disease in zebrafish

    OpenAIRE

    Guyon, Jeffrey R.; Steffen, Leta S; Howell, Melanie H.; Pusack, Timothy J; Lawrence, Chris; Kunkel, Louis M

    2007-01-01

    Modeling human muscle disease in zebrafish correspondence: Corresponding author. Children's Hospital Boston, Enders Bldg, Rm 570, 300 Longwood Ave Boston, MA 02115. Tel.: +1 617 355 7576. (Kunkel, Louis M.) (Kunkel, Louis M.) Program in Genomics and Howard Hughes Medical Institute at Children's Hospital Boston - Boston--> , MA 02115--> - UNITED STATES (Guyon, Jeffrey R.) Program in Genomics a...

  4. Linking Microbiota to Human Diseases: A Systems Biology Perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Hao; Tremaroli, Valentina; Bäckhed, Fredrik

    2015-12-01

    The human gut microbiota encompasses a densely populated ecosystem that provides essential functions for host development, immune maturation, and metabolism. Alterations to the gut microbiota have been observed in numerous diseases, including human metabolic diseases such as obesity, type 2 diabetes (T2D), and irritable bowel syndrome, and some animal experiments have suggested causality. However, few studies have validated causality in humans and the underlying mechanisms remain largely to be elucidated. We discuss how systems biology approaches combined with new experimental technologies may disentangle some of the mechanistic details in the complex interactions of diet, microbiota, and host metabolism and may provide testable hypotheses for advancing our current understanding of human-microbiota interaction.

  5. GWAS analysis of QTL for enteric septicemia of catfish and their involved genes suggest evolutionary conservation of a molecular mechanism of disease resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Tao; Liu, Shikai; Geng, Xin; Jin, Yulin; Jiang, Chen; Bao, Lisui; Yao, Jun; Zhang, Yu; Zhang, Jiaren; Sun, Luyang; Wang, Xiaozhu; Li, Ning; Tan, Suxu; Liu, Zhanjiang

    2017-02-01

    Disease problems cause major economic losses for the aquaculture industries. In catfish, enteric septicemia of catfish (ESC), caused by the bacterial pathogen Edwardsiella ictaluri, is the leading disease problem, causing tens of millions of dollars of annual economic losses. In this study, we conducted a genome-wide association study to determine quantitative trait loci (QTL) for resistance against ESC using an interspecific hybrid system. Five hundred fish were used in the analysis and 192 phenotypic extremes were used for genotyping with the catfish 250K SNP arrays. A genomic region on linkage group (LG) 1 was found significantly associated with ESC disease resistance. In addition, two suggestively associated QTL for ESC resistance were identified on LG 12 and LG 16. The nlrc3 duplicates were identified within all the three QTL, suggesting their importance in association with the QTL. Within the significant QTL on LG 1, 16 genes with known functions in immunity were identified. Of particular interest is the nck1 gene nearby the most significantly associated SNP. Nck1 was known to function as an adaptor to facilitating the pathogenesis of enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) in humans. E. ictaluri and EPEC pathogens belong to the same bacterial family and share many common characteristics. The fact that nck1 is mapped in the QTL and that it was significantly upregulated in channel catfish intestine after ESC challenge suggested its candidacy of being involved in resistance/susceptibility of ESC.

  6. [Human prion diseases in the Czech Republic].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rohan, Z; Rusina, R; Marešová, M; Matěj, R

    2015-09-01

    Human prion diseases are a group of very rare diseases with a unique pathogenesis and, due to an inauspicious prognosis and unavailability of therapy, with fatal consequences. The etiopathogenetic background is the presence of pathologically misfolded prion protein, highly resistant to denaturation, the aggregation and presence of which in the brain tissue causes irreversible neuronal damage. The most frequent prion disease in humans is Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) which occurs in sporadic, hereditary/familial, or acquired/infectious/iatrogenic forms. A new form of CJD, variant CJD, is considered to be linked to dietary exposure to beef products from cattle infected with bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) and to infection via blood transfusion. The clinical picture of these diseases is characterized by a rapidly progressing dementia, cerebellar and extrapyramidal symptoms, and rather specific MRI, EEG, and CSF findings. Clinically, the diagnosis is described as possible or probable prion disease and needs to be confirmed by neuropathological or immunological investigation of the brain tissue. Epidemiological data from the Czech Republic spanning the last decade are presented.

  7. Human lagochilascariasis-A rare helminthic disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dulcinea Maria Barbosa Campos

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Lagochilascariasis is a parasitic disease caused by a helminth of the order Ascaroidea, genus Lagochilascaris that comprises 6 species, among which only Lagochilascaris minor Leiper, 1909, is implicated in the human form of the disease. It is remarkable that the majority of cases of human lagochilascariasis in the Americas have been reported in Brazil. The natural definitive hosts of this parasite seem to be wild felines and canines. Lagochilascariasis is mostly a chronic human disease that can persist for several years, in which the parasite burrows into the subcutaneous tissues of the neck, paranasal sinuses, and mastoid. L. minor exhibits remarkable ability to migrate through the tissues of its hosts, destroying even bone tissue. Fatal cases have been described in which the parasite was found in the lungs or central nervous system. Treatment is often palliative, with recurrence of lesions. This paper summarizes the main features of the disease and its etiologic agent, including prevalence, life cycle, clinical course, and treatment.

  8. Heartworm disease in animals and humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCall, John W; Genchi, Claudio; Kramer, Laura H; Guerrero, Jorge; Venco, Luigi

    2008-01-01

    Heartworm disease due to Dirofilaria immitis continues to cause severe disease and even death in dogs and other animals in many parts of the world, even though safe, highly effective and convenient preventatives have been available for the past two decades. Moreover, the parasite and vector mosquitoes continue to spread into areas where they have not been reported previously. Heartworm societies have been established in the USA and Japan and the First European Dirofilaria Days (FEDD) Conference was held in Zagreb, Croatia, in February of 2007. These organizations promote awareness, encourage research and provide updated guidelines for the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of heartworm disease. The chapter begins with a review of the biology and life cycle of the parasite. It continues with the prevalence and distribution of the disease in domestic and wild animals, with emphasis on more recent data on the spreading of the disease and the use of molecular biology techniques in vector studies. The section on pathogenesis and immunology also includes a discussion of the current knowledge of the potential role of the Wolbachia endosymbiont in inflammatory and immune responses to D. immitis infection, diagnostic use of specific immune responses to the bacteria, immunomodulatory activity and antibiotic treatment of infected animals. Canine, feline and ferret heartworm disease are updated with regard to the clinical presentation, diagnosis, prevention, therapy and management of the disease, with special emphasis on the recently described Heartworm Associated Respiratory Disease (HARD) Syndrome in cats. The section devoted to heartworm infection in humans also includes notes on other epizootic filariae, particularly D. repens in humans in Europe. The chapter concludes with a discussion on emerging strategies in heartworm treatment and control, highlighting the potential role of tetracycline antibiotics in adulticidal therapy.

  9. Unsolved issues related to human mitochondrial diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lombès, Anne; Auré, Karine; Bellanné-Chantelot, Christine; Gilleron, Mylène; Jardel, Claude

    2014-05-01

    Human mitochondrial diseases, defined as the diseases due to a mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation defect, represent a large group of very diverse diseases with respect to phenotype and genetic causes. They present with many unsolved issues, the comprehensive analysis of which is beyond the scope of this review. We here essentially focus on the mechanisms underlying the diversity of targeted tissues, which is an important component of the large panel of these diseases phenotypic expression. The reproducibility of genotype/phenotype expression, the presence of modifying factors, and the potential causes for the restricted pattern of tissular expression are reviewed. Special emphasis is made on heteroplasmy, a specific feature of mitochondrial diseases, defined as the coexistence within the cell of mutant and wild type mitochondrial DNA molecules. Its existence permits unequal segregation during mitoses of the mitochondrial DNA populations and consequently heterogeneous tissue distribution of the mutation load. The observed tissue distributions of recurrent human mitochondrial DNA deleterious mutations are diverse but reproducible for a given mutation demonstrating that the segregation is not a random process. Its extent and mechanisms remain essentially unknown despite recent advances obtained in animal models.

  10. Association of variants at 1q32 and STAT3 with ankylosing spondylitis suggests genetic overlap with Crohn's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrick Danoy

    Full Text Available Ankylosing spondylitis (AS is a common inflammatory arthritic condition. Overt inflammatory bowel disease (IBD occurs in about 10% of AS patients, and in addition 70% of AS cases may have subclinical terminal ileitis. Spondyloarthritis is also common in IBD patients. We therefore tested Crohn's disease susceptibility genes for association with AS, aiming to identify pleiotropic genetic associations with both diseases. Genotyping was carried out using Sequenom and Applied Biosystems TaqMan and OpenArray technologies on 53 markers selected from 30 Crohn's disease associated genomic regions. We tested genotypes in a population of unrelated individual cases (n = 2,773 and controls (n = 2,215 of white European ancestry for association with AS. Statistical analysis was carried out using a Cochran-Armitage test for trend in PLINK. Strong association was detected at chr1q32 near KIF21B (rs11584383, P = 1.6 × 10(-10, odds ratio (OR = 0.74, 95% CI:0.68-0.82. Association with disease was also detected for 2 variants within STAT3 (rs6503695, P = 4.6 × 10(-4. OR = 0.86 (95% CI:0.79-0.93; rs744166, P = 2.6 × 10(-5, OR = 0.84 (95% CI:0.77-0.91. Association was confirmed for IL23R (rs11465804, P = 1.2 × 10(-5, OR = 0.65 (95% CI:0.54-0.79, and further associations were detected for IL12B (rs10045431, P = 5.2 × 10(-5, OR = 0.83 (95% CI:0.76-0.91, CDKAL1 (rs6908425, P = 1.1 × 10(-4, OR = 0.82 (95% CI:0.74-0.91, LRRK2/MUC19 (rs11175593, P = 9.9 × 10(-5, OR = 1.92 (95% CI: 1.38-2.67, and chr13q14 (rs3764147, P = 5.9 × 10(-4, OR = 1.19 (95% CI: 1.08-1.31. Excluding cases with clinical IBD did not significantly affect these findings. This study identifies chr1q32 and STAT3 as ankylosing spondylitis susceptibility loci. It also further confirms association for IL23R and detects suggestive association with another 4 loci. STAT3 is a key signaling molecule within the Th17 lymphocyte differentiation pathway and further enhances the case for a major role of

  11. The role of formins in human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeWard, Aaron D; Eisenmann, Kathryn M; Matheson, Stephen F; Alberts, Arthur S

    2010-02-01

    Formins are a conserved family of proteins that play key roles in cytoskeletal remodeling. They nucleate and processively elongate non-branched actin filaments and also modulate microtubule dynamics. Despite their significant contributions to cell biology and development, few studies have directly implicated formins in disease pathogenesis. This review highlights the roles of formins in cell division, migration, immunity, and microvesicle formation in the context of human disease. In addition, we discuss the importance of controlling formin activity and protein expression to maintain cell homeostasis.

  12. Human papillomavirus-associated diseases and cancers

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lan Yang; Jianbo Zhu Co-first author; Xiaoyue Song; Yan Qi; Xiaobin Cui; Feng Li 

    2015-01-01

    Human papilomaviruses (HPVs) have been detected in cervical cancer cels and skin papiloma cels, which have a variety of types, including low-risk and high-risk types. HPV genome replication requires the host cel’s DNA synthesis machinery, and HPVs encode proteins that maintain diferentiated epithelial cels in a replication-competent state. HPV types are tissue-specific and generaly produce diferent types of le-sions, either benign or malignant. This review examines diferent HPV types and their associated diseases and presents therapeutic options for the treatment of HPV-positive diseases.

  13. Human remains from the Pleistocene-Holocene transition of southwest China suggest a complex evolutionary history for East Asians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curnoe, Darren; Xueping, Ji; Herries, Andy I R; Kanning, Bai; Taçon, Paul S C; Zhende, Bao; Fink, David; Yunsheng, Zhu; Hellstrom, John; Yun, Luo; Cassis, Gerasimos; Bing, Su; Wroe, Stephen; Shi, Hong; Parr, William C H; Shengmin, Huang; Rogers, Natalie

    2012-01-01

    Later Pleistocene human evolution in East Asia remains poorly understood owing to a scarcity of well described, reliably classified and accurately dated fossils. Southwest China has been identified from genetic research as a hotspot of human diversity, containing ancient mtDNA and Y-DNA lineages, and has yielded a number of human remains thought to derive from Pleistocene deposits. We have prepared, reconstructed, described and dated a new partial skull from a consolidated sediment block collected in 1979 from the site of Longlin Cave (Guangxi Province). We also undertook new excavations at Maludong (Yunnan Province) to clarify the stratigraphy and dating of a large sample of mostly undescribed human remains from the site. We undertook a detailed comparison of cranial, including a virtual endocast for the Maludong calotte, mandibular and dental remains from these two localities. Both samples probably derive from the same population, exhibiting an unusual mixture of modern human traits, characters probably plesiomorphic for later Homo, and some unusual features. We dated charcoal with AMS radiocarbon dating and speleothem with the Uranium-series technique and the results show both samples to be from the Pleistocene-Holocene transition: ∼14.3-11.5 ka. Our analysis suggests two plausible explanations for the morphology sampled at Longlin Cave and Maludong. First, it may represent a late-surviving archaic population, perhaps paralleling the situation seen in North Africa as indicated by remains from Dar-es-Soltane and Temara, and maybe also in southern China at Zhirendong. Alternatively, East Asia may have been colonised during multiple waves during the Pleistocene, with the Longlin-Maludong morphology possibly reflecting deep population substructure in Africa prior to modern humans dispersing into Eurasia.

  14. Human Remains from the Pleistocene-Holocene Transition of Southwest China Suggest a Complex Evolutionary History for East Asians

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curnoe, Darren; Xueping, Ji; Herries, Andy I. R.; Kanning, Bai; Taçon, Paul S. C.; Zhende, Bao; Fink, David; Yunsheng, Zhu; Hellstrom, John; Yun, Luo; Cassis, Gerasimos; Bing, Su; Wroe, Stephen; Shi, Hong; Parr, William C. H.; Shengmin, Huang; Rogers, Natalie

    2012-01-01

    Background Later Pleistocene human evolution in East Asia remains poorly understood owing to a scarcity of well described, reliably classified and accurately dated fossils. Southwest China has been identified from genetic research as a hotspot of human diversity, containing ancient mtDNA and Y-DNA lineages, and has yielded a number of human remains thought to derive from Pleistocene deposits. We have prepared, reconstructed, described and dated a new partial skull from a consolidated sediment block collected in 1979 from the site of Longlin Cave (Guangxi Province). We also undertook new excavations at Maludong (Yunnan Province) to clarify the stratigraphy and dating of a large sample of mostly undescribed human remains from the site. Methodology/Principal Findings We undertook a detailed comparison of cranial, including a virtual endocast for the Maludong calotte, mandibular and dental remains from these two localities. Both samples probably derive from the same population, exhibiting an unusual mixture of modern human traits, characters probably plesiomorphic for later Homo, and some unusual features. We dated charcoal with AMS radiocarbon dating and speleothem with the Uranium-series technique and the results show both samples to be from the Pleistocene-Holocene transition: ∼14.3-11.5 ka. Conclusions/Significance Our analysis suggests two plausible explanations for the morphology sampled at Longlin Cave and Maludong. First, it may represent a late-surviving archaic population, perhaps paralleling the situation seen in North Africa as indicated by remains from Dar-es-Soltane and Temara, and maybe also in southern China at Zhirendong. Alternatively, East Asia may have been colonised during multiple waves during the Pleistocene, with the Longlin-Maludong morphology possibly reflecting deep population substructure in Africa prior to modern humans dispersing into Eurasia. PMID:22431968

  15. Human remains from the Pleistocene-Holocene transition of southwest China suggest a complex evolutionary history for East Asians.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darren Curnoe

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Later Pleistocene human evolution in East Asia remains poorly understood owing to a scarcity of well described, reliably classified and accurately dated fossils. Southwest China has been identified from genetic research as a hotspot of human diversity, containing ancient mtDNA and Y-DNA lineages, and has yielded a number of human remains thought to derive from Pleistocene deposits. We have prepared, reconstructed, described and dated a new partial skull from a consolidated sediment block collected in 1979 from the site of Longlin Cave (Guangxi Province. We also undertook new excavations at Maludong (Yunnan Province to clarify the stratigraphy and dating of a large sample of mostly undescribed human remains from the site. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We undertook a detailed comparison of cranial, including a virtual endocast for the Maludong calotte, mandibular and dental remains from these two localities. Both samples probably derive from the same population, exhibiting an unusual mixture of modern human traits, characters probably plesiomorphic for later Homo, and some unusual features. We dated charcoal with AMS radiocarbon dating and speleothem with the Uranium-series technique and the results show both samples to be from the Pleistocene-Holocene transition: ∼14.3-11.5 ka. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our analysis suggests two plausible explanations for the morphology sampled at Longlin Cave and Maludong. First, it may represent a late-surviving archaic population, perhaps paralleling the situation seen in North Africa as indicated by remains from Dar-es-Soltane and Temara, and maybe also in southern China at Zhirendong. Alternatively, East Asia may have been colonised during multiple waves during the Pleistocene, with the Longlin-Maludong morphology possibly reflecting deep population substructure in Africa prior to modern humans dispersing into Eurasia.

  16. Kinetic properties of mouse pancreatic lipase-related protein-2 suggest the mouse may not model human fat digestion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Xunjun; Ross, Leah E; Miller, Rita A; Lowe, Mark E

    2011-05-01

    Genetically engineered mice have been employed to understand the role of lipases in dietary fat digestion with the expectation that the results can be extrapolated to humans. However, little is known about the properties of mouse pancreatic triglyceride lipase (mPTL) and pancreatic lipase-related protein-2 (mPLRP2). In this study, both lipases were expressed in Pichia Pastoris GS115, purified to near homogeneity, and their properties were characterized. Mouse PTL displayed the kinetics typical of PTL from other species. Like mPTL, mPLRP2 exhibited strong activity against various triglycerides. In contrast to mPTL, mPLRP2 was not inhibited by increasing bile salt concentration. Colipase stimulated mPLRP2 activity 2- to 4-fold. Additionally, mPTL absolutely required colipase for absorption to a lipid interface, whereas mPLRP2 absorbed fully without colipase. mPLRP2 had full activity in the presence of BSA, whereas BSA completely inhibited mPTL unless colipase was present. All of these properties of mPLRP2 differ from the properties of human PLRP2 (hPLRP2). Furthermore, mPLRP2 appears capable of compensating for mPTL deficiency. These findings suggest that the molecular mechanisms of dietary fat digestion may be different in humans and mice. Thus, extrapolation of dietary fat digestion in mice to humans should be done with care.

  17. [Human hantavirus diseases - still neglected zoonoses?].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vrbovská, V; Chalupa, P; Straková, P; Hubálek, Z; Rudolf, I

    2015-10-01

    Hantavirus disease is the most common rodent-borne viral infection in the Czech Republic, with a mean annual incidence of 0.02 cases per 100 000 population and specific antibodies detected in 1% of the human population. Four hantaviruses (Puumala, Dobrava-Belgrade, Tula, and Seewis) circulate in this country, of which Puumala virus (responsible for a mild form of hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome called nephropathia epidemica) and Dobrava-Belgrade virus (causing haemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome) have been proven to cause human disease. The aim of this study is to provide a comprehensive review of the hantaviruses occurring in the Czech Republic, based on the literature published during the past three decades, including their geographical distribution and clinical symptoms. The recent detection of Tula virus in an immunocompromised person as well as reports of Seoul virus infections in Europe highlight the possible emergence of neglected hantavirus infections in the foreseeable future.

  18. Molecular biology of human muscle disease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dunne, P.W.; Epstein, H.F. (Baylor Coll. of Medicine, Houston, TX (United States))

    1991-01-01

    The molecular revolution that is transforming the entire biomedical field has had far-reaching impact in its application to inherited human muscle disease. The gene for Duchenne muscular dystrophy was one of the first cloned without knowledge of the defective protein product. This success was based upon the availability of key chromosomal aberrations that provided molecular landmarks for the disease locus. Subsequent discoveries regarding the mode of expression for this gene, the structure and localization of its protein product dystrophin, and molecular diagnosis of affected and carrier individuals constitute a paradigm for investigation of human genetics. Finding the gene for myotonic muscular dystrophy is requiring the brute force approach of cloning several million bases of DNA, identifying expressed sequences, and characterizing candidate genes. The gene that causes hypertrophic cardiomyopathy has been found serendipitously to be one of the genetic markers on chromosome 14, the {beta} myosin heavy chain.

  19. Stable Isotopes Suggest Low Site Fidelity in Bar-headed Geese (Anser indicus) in Mongolia: Implications for Disease Transmission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bridge, Eli S.; Kelly, Jeffrey F.; Xiao, Xiangming; Batbayar, Nyambayar; Natsagdorj, Tseveenmyadag; Hill, Nichola J.; Takekawa, John Y.; Hawkes, Lucy A.; Bishop, Charles M.; Butler, Patrick J.; Newman, Scott H.

    2016-01-01

    Population connectivity is an important consideration in studies of disease transmission and biological conservation, especially with regard to migratory species. Determining how and when different subpopulations intermingle during different phases of the annual cycle can help identify important geographical regions or features as targets for conservation efforts and can help inform our understanding of continental-scale disease transmission. In this study, stable isotopes of hydrogen and carbon in contour feathers were used to assess the degree of molt-site fidelity among Bar-headed Geese (Anser indicus) captured in north-central Mongolia. Samples were collected from actively molting Bar-headed Geese (n = 61), and some individual samples included both a newly grown feather (still in sheath) and an old, worn feather from the bird’s previous molt (n = 21). Although there was no difference in mean hydrogen isotope ratios for the old and new feathers, the isotopic variance in old feathers was approximately three times higher than that of the new feathers, which suggests that these birds use different and geographically distant molting locations from year to year. To further test this conclusion, online data and modeling tools from the isoMAP website were used to generate probability landscapes for the origin of each feather. Likely molting locations were much more widespread for old feathers than for new feathers, which supports the prospect of low molt-site fidelity. This finding indicates that population connectivity would be greater than expected based on data from a single annual cycle, and that disease spread can be rapid even in areas like Mongolia where Bar-headed Geese generally breed in small isolated groups. PMID:27695389

  20. Nutrigenomics of high fat diet induced obesity in mice suggests relationships between susceptibility to fatty liver disease and the proteasome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helen Waller-Evans

    Full Text Available Nutritional factors play important roles in the etiology of obesity, type 2 diabetes mellitus and their complications through genotype x environment interactions. We have characterised molecular adaptation to high fat diet (HFD feeding in inbred mouse strains widely used in genetic and physiological studies. We carried out physiological tests, plasma lipid assays, obesity measures, liver histology, hepatic lipid measurements and liver genome-wide gene transcription profiling in C57BL/6J and BALB/c mice fed either a control or a high fat diet. The two strains showed marked susceptibility (C57BL/6J and relative resistance (BALB/c to HFD-induced insulin resistance and non alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD. Global gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA of transcriptome data identified consistent patterns of expression of key genes (Srebf1, Stard4, Pnpla2, Ccnd1 and molecular pathways in the two strains, which may underlie homeostatic adaptations to dietary fat. Differential regulation of pathways, including the proteasome, the ubiquitin mediated proteolysis and PPAR signalling in fat fed C57BL/6J and BALB/c suggests that altered expression of underlying diet-responsive genes may be involved in contrasting nutrigenomic predisposition and resistance to insulin resistance and NAFLD in these models. Collectively, these data, which further demonstrate the impact of gene x environment interactions on gene expression regulations, contribute to improved knowledge of natural and pathogenic adaptive genomic regulations and molecular mechanisms associated with genetically determined susceptibility and resistance to metabolic diseases.

  1. Multisystem Disease, Including Eosinophilia and Progressive Hyper-Creatine-Kinase-emia over 10 Years, Suggests Mitochondrial Disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Josef Finsterer

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Background: Eosinophilia has not been reported as a manifestation of a mitochondrial disorder (MID. Here, we report a patient with clinical features suggesting a MID and permanent eosinophilia, multisystem disease, and progressive hyper-creatine-kinase (CK-emia for at least 10 years. Materials and Methods: Methods applied included a clinical exam, blood chemical investigations, electrophysiological investigations, imaging, and invasive cardiological investigations. The patient was repeatedly followed up over several years. He required replacement cardiac surgery. Results: In a 57-year-old male, eosinophilia was first detected at the age of 44 years and has remained almost constantly present until today. In addition to eosinophilia, he developed progressive hyper-CK-emia at the age of 47 years. His history was further positive for hepatopathy, hyperlipidemia, hypothyroidism, renal insufficiency, spontaneous Achilles tendon rupture, double vision, exercise intolerance, muscle aching, mild hypoacusis, sensory neuropathy, seizures, and mitral insufficiency/stenosis requiring valve replacement therapy, oral anticoagulation, and pacemaker implantation. Based on the multisystem nature of his abnormalities and permanent hyper-CK-emia, a MID was suspected. Conclusion: Eosinophilia can be associated with a MID with myopathy, possibly as a reaction to myofiber necrosis. If eosinophilia is associated with progressive hyper-CK-emia and multisystem disease, a MID should be suspected.

  2. Genes of periodontopathogens expressed during human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Yo-Han; Kozarov, Emil V; Walters, Sheila M; Cao, Sam Linsen; Handfield, Martin; Hillman, Jeffrey D; Progulske-Fox, Ann

    2002-12-01

    Since many bacterial genes are environmentally regulated, the screening for virulence-associated factors using classical genetic and molecular biology approaches can be biased under laboratory growth conditions of a given pathogen, because the required conditions for expression of many virulence factors may not occur during in vitro growth. Thus, technologies have been developed during the past several years to identify genes that are expressed during disease using animal models of human disease. However, animal models are not always truly representative of human disease, and with many pathogens, there is no appropriate animal model. A new technology, in vivo-induced antigen technology (IVIAT) was thus engineered and tested in our laboratory to screen for genes of pathogenic organisms induced specifically in humans, without the use of animal or artificial models of infection. This technology uses pooled sera from patients to probe for genes expressed exclusively in vivo (or ivi, in vivo-induced genes). IVIAT was originally designed for the study of Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans pathogenesis, but we have now extended it to other oral pathogens including Porphyromonas gingivalis. One hundred seventy-one thousand (171,000) clones from P. gingivalis strain W83 were screened and 144 were confirmed positive. Over 300,000 A. actinomycetemcomitans clones were probed, and 116 were confirmed positive using a quantitative blot assay. MAT has proven useful in identifying previously unknown in vivo-induced genes that are likely involved in virulence and are thus excellent candidates for use in diagnostic : and therapeutic strategies, including vaccine design.

  3. Modeling Pathogenic Mutations of Human Twinkle in Drosophila Suggests an Apoptosis Role in Response to Mitochondrial Defects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanchez-Martinez, Alvaro; Calleja, Manuel; Peralta, Susana; Matsushima, Yuichi; Hernandez-Sierra, Rosana; Whitworth, Alexander J.; Kaguni, Laurie S.; Garesse, Rafael

    2012-01-01

    The human gene C10orf2 encodes the mitochondrial replicative DNA helicase Twinkle, mutations of which are responsible for a significant fraction of cases of autosomal dominant progressive external ophthalmoplegia (adPEO), a human mitochondrial disease caused by defects in intergenomic communication. We report the analysis of orthologous mutations in the Drosophila melanogaster mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) helicase gene, d-mtDNA helicase. Increased expression of wild type d-mtDNA helicase using the UAS-GAL4 system leads to an increase in mtDNA copy number throughout adult life without any noteworthy phenotype, whereas overexpression of d-mtDNA helicase containing the K388A mutation in the helicase active site results in a severe depletion of mtDNA and a lethal phenotype. Overexpression of two d-mtDNA helicase variants equivalent to two human adPEO mutations shows differential effects. The A442P mutation exhibits a dominant negative effect similar to that of the active site mutant. In contrast, overexpression of d-mtDNA helicase containing the W441C mutation results in a slight decrease in mtDNA copy number during the third instar larval stage, and a moderate decrease in life span in the adult population. Overexpression of d-mtDNA helicase containing either the K388A or A442P mutations causes a mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) defect that significantly reduces cell proliferation. The mitochondrial impairment caused by these mutations promotes apoptosis, arguing that mitochondria regulate programmed cell death in Drosophila. Our study of d-mtDNA helicase overexpression provides a tractable Drosophila model for understanding the cellular and molecular effects of human adPEO mutations. PMID:22952820

  4. Mitochondria: impaired mitochondrial translation in human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boczonadi, Veronika; Horvath, Rita

    2014-03-01

    Defects of the mitochondrial protein synthesis cause a subgroup of mitochondrial diseases, which are usually associated with decreased activities of multiple respiratory chain (RC) enzymes. The clinical presentations of these disorders are often disabling, progressive or fatal, affecting the brain, liver, skeletal muscle, heart and other organs. Currently there are no effective cures for these disorders and treatment is at best symptomatic. The diagnosis in patients with multiple respiratory chain complex defects is particularly difficult because of the massive number of nuclear genes potentially involved in intra-mitochondrial protein synthesis. Many of these genes are not yet linked to human disease. Whole exome sequencing rapidly changed the diagnosis of these patients by identifying the primary defect in DNA, and preventing the need for invasive and complex biochemical testing. Better understanding of the mitochondrial protein synthesis apparatus will help us to explore disease mechanisms and will provide clues for developing novel therapies.

  5. Widening Spectrum of Cellular and Subcellular Expression of Human GLUD1 and GLUD2 Glutamate Dehydrogenases Suggests Novel Functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spanaki, Cleanthe; Kotzamani, Dimitra; Plaitakis, Andreas

    2017-01-01

    in the cytoplasm of gray and white matter astrocytes within coarse structures resembling mitochondria. Additionally, hGDH1 localized to the nuclear membrane of a subpopulation of astrocytes and of the vast majority of oligodendrocytes and their precursors. Remarkably, hGDH2-specific staining was detected in human cortical neurons, with different expression patterns having emerged. One pattern, observed in large cortical neurons (some with pyramidal morphology), was a hGDH2-specific labeling of cytoplasmic structures resembling mitochondria. These were distributed either in the cell body-axon or on the cell surface in close proximity to astrocytic end-feet that encircle glutamatergic synapses. Another pattern was observed in small cortical neurons with round dense nuclei in which the hGDH2-specific staining was found in the nuclear membrane. A detailed description of these observations and their functional implications, suggesting that the GDH flux is used by different cells to serve some of their unique functions, is presented below.

  6. Plant Polyphenols as Dietary Antioxidants in Human Health and Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kanti Bhooshan Pandey

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Polyphenols are secondary metabolites of plants and are generally involved in defense against ultraviolet radiation or aggression by pathogens. In the last decade, there has been much interest in the potential health benefits of dietary plant polyphenols as antioxidant. Epidemiological studies and associated meta-analyses strongly suggest that long term consumption of diets rich in plant polyphenols offer protection against development of cancers, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, osteoporosis and neurodegenerative diseases. Here we present knowledge about the biological effects of plant polyphenols in the context of relevance to human health.

  7. Advances in chromatin remodeling and human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cho, Kyoung Sang; Elizondo, Leah I; Boerkoel, Cornelius F

    2004-06-01

    Epigenetic factors alter phenotype without changing genotype. A primary molecular mechanism underlying epigenetics is the alteration of chromatin structure by covalent DNA modifications, covalent histone modifications, and nucleosome reorganization. Remodeling of chromatin structure regulates DNA methylation, replication, recombination, and repair as well as gene expression. As these functions would predict, dysfunction of the proteins that remodel chromatin causes an array of multi-system disorders and neoplasias. Insights from these diseases suggest that during embryonic and fetal life, environmental distortions of chromatin remodeling encode a 'molecular memory' that predispose the individual to diseases in adulthood.

  8. Differential representation of liver proteins in obese human subjects suggests novel biomarkers and promising targets for drug development in obesity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caira, Simonetta; Iannelli, Antonio; Sciarrillo, Rosaria; Picariello, Gianluca; Renzone, Giovanni; Scaloni, Andrea; Addeo, Pietro

    2017-12-01

    The proteome of liver biopsies from human obese (O) subjects has been compared to those of nonobese (NO) subjects using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DE). Differentially represented proteins were identified by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometry (MS)-based peptide mass fingerprinting (PMF) and nanoflow-liquid chromatography coupled to electrospray-tandem mass spectrometry (nLC-ESI-MS/MS). Overall, 61 gene products common to all of the liver biopsies were identified within 65 spots, among which 25 ones were differently represented between O and NO subjects. In particular, over-representation of short-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase, Δ(3,5)-Δ(2,4)dienoyl-CoA isomerase, acetyl-CoA acetyltransferase, glyoxylate reductase/hydroxypyruvate reductase, fructose-biphosphate aldolase B, peroxiredoxin I, protein DJ-1, catalase, α- and β-hemoglobin subunits, 3-mercaptopyruvate S-transferase, calreticulin, aminoacylase 1, phenazine biosynthesis-like domain-containing protein and a form of fatty acid-binding protein, together with downrepresentation of glutamate dehydrogenase, glutathione S-transferase A1, S-adenosylmethionine synthase 1A and a form of apolipoprotein A-I, was associated with the obesity condition. Some of these metabolic enzymes and antioxidant proteins have already been identified as putative diagnostic markers of liver dysfunction in animal models of steatosis or obesity, suggesting additional investigations on their role in these syndromes. Their differential representation in human liver was suggestive of their consideration as obesity human biomarkers and for the development of novel antiobesity drugs.

  9. Topography of Gng2- and NetrinG2-Expression Suggests an Insular Origin of the Human Claustrum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pirone, Andrea; Cozzi, Bruno; Edelstein, Larry; Peruffo, Antonella; Lenzi, Carla; Quilici, Francesca; Antonini, Rita; Castagna, Maura

    2012-01-01

    The claustrum has been described in the forebrain of all mammals studied so far. It has been suggested that the claustrum plays a role in the integration of multisensory information: however, its detailed structure and function remain enigmatic. The human claustrum is a thin, irregular, sheet of grey matter located between the inner surface of the insular cortex and the outer surface of the putamen. Recently, the G-protein gamma2 subunit (Gng2) was proposed as a specific claustrum marker in the rat, and used to better delineate its anatomical boundaries and connections. Additional claustral markers proposed in mammals include Netrin-G2 in the monkey and latexin in the cat. Here we report the expression and distribution of Gng2 and Netrin-G2 in human post-mortem samples of the claustrum and adjacent structures. Gng2 immunoreactivity was detected in the neuropil of the claustrum and of the insular cortex but not in the putamen. A faint labelling was present also in the external and extreme capsules. Double-labelling experiments indicate that Gng2 is also expressed in glial cells. Netrin-G2 labelling was seen in neuronal cell bodies throughout the claustrum and the insular cortex but not in the medially adjacent putamen. No latexin immunoreactive element was detected in the claustrum or adjacent structures. Our results confirm that both the Gng2 and the Netrin-G2 proteins show an affinity to the claustrum and related formations also in the human brain. The presence of Gng2 and Netrin-G2 immunoreactive elements in the insular cortex, but not in the putamen, suggests a possible common ontogeny of the claustrum and insula. PMID:22957104

  10. Retrohoming of a Mobile Group II Intron in Human Cells Suggests How Eukaryotes Limit Group II Intron Proliferation.

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    David M Truong

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Mobile bacterial group II introns are evolutionary ancestors of spliceosomal introns and retroelements in eukaryotes. They consist of an autocatalytic intron RNA (a "ribozyme" and an intron-encoded reverse transcriptase, which function together to promote intron integration into new DNA sites by a mechanism termed "retrohoming". Although mobile group II introns splice and retrohome efficiently in bacteria, all examined thus far function inefficiently in eukaryotes, where their ribozyme activity is limited by low Mg2+ concentrations, and intron-containing transcripts are subject to nonsense-mediated decay (NMD and translational repression. Here, by using RNA polymerase II to express a humanized group II intron reverse transcriptase and T7 RNA polymerase to express intron transcripts resistant to NMD, we find that simply supplementing culture medium with Mg2+ induces the Lactococcus lactis Ll.LtrB intron to retrohome into plasmid and chromosomal sites, the latter at frequencies up to ~0.1%, in viable HEK-293 cells. Surprisingly, under these conditions, the Ll.LtrB intron reverse transcriptase is required for retrohoming but not for RNA splicing as in bacteria. By using a genetic assay for in vivo selections combined with deep sequencing, we identified intron RNA mutations that enhance retrohoming in human cells, but <4-fold and not without added Mg2+. Further, the selected mutations lie outside the ribozyme catalytic core, which appears not readily modified to function efficiently at low Mg2+ concentrations. Our results reveal differences between group II intron retrohoming in human cells and bacteria and suggest constraints on critical nucleotide residues of the ribozyme core that limit how much group II intron retrohoming in eukaryotes can be enhanced. These findings have implications for group II intron use for gene targeting in eukaryotes and suggest how differences in intracellular Mg2+ concentrations between bacteria and eukarya may have

  11. Molecular mechanisms of acrolein toxicity: relevance to human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moghe, Akshata; Ghare, Smita; Lamoreau, Bryan; Mohammad, Mohammad; Barve, Shirish; McClain, Craig; Joshi-Barve, Swati

    2015-02-01

    Acrolein, a highly reactive unsaturated aldehyde, is a ubiquitous environmental pollutant and its potential as a serious environmental health threat is beginning to be recognized. Humans are exposed to acrolein per oral (food and water), respiratory (cigarette smoke, automobile exhaust, and biocide use) and dermal routes, in addition to endogenous generation (metabolism and lipid peroxidation). Acrolein has been suggested to play a role in several disease states including spinal cord injury, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer's disease, cardiovascular disease, diabetes mellitus, and neuro-, hepato-, and nephro-toxicity. On the cellular level, acrolein exposure has diverse toxic effects, including DNA and protein adduction, oxidative stress, mitochondrial disruption, membrane damage, endoplasmic reticulum stress, and immune dysfunction. This review addresses our current understanding of each pathogenic mechanism of acrolein toxicity, with emphasis on the known and anticipated contribution to clinical disease, and potential therapies.

  12. Humanized Mouse Model of Ebola Virus Disease Mimics the Immune Responses in Human Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bird, Brian H; Spengler, Jessica R; Chakrabarti, Ayan K; Khristova, Marina L; Sealy, Tara K; Coleman-McCray, JoAnn D; Martin, Brock E; Dodd, Kimberly A; Goldsmith, Cynthia S; Sanders, Jeanine; Zaki, Sherif R; Nichol, Stuart T; Spiropoulou, Christina F

    2016-03-01

    Animal models recapitulating human Ebola virus disease (EVD) are critical for insights into virus pathogenesis. Ebola virus (EBOV) isolates derived directly from human specimens do not, without adaptation, cause disease in immunocompetent adult rodents. Here, we describe EVD in mice engrafted with human immune cells (hu-BLT). hu-BLT mice developed EVD following wild-type EBOV infection. Infection with high-dose EBOV resulted in rapid, lethal EVD with high viral loads, alterations in key human antiviral immune cytokines and chemokines, and severe histopathologic findings similar to those shown in the limited human postmortem data available. A dose- and donor-dependent clinical course was observed in hu-BLT mice infected with lower doses of either Mayinga (1976) or Makona (2014) isolates derived from human EBOV cases. Engraftment of the human cellular immune system appeared to be essential for the observed virulence, as nonengrafted mice did not support productive EBOV replication or develop lethal disease. hu-BLT mice offer a unique model for investigating the human immune response in EVD and an alternative animal model for EVD pathogenesis studies and therapeutic screening.

  13. Uniparental disomy and human disease: an overview.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamazawa, Kazuki; Ogata, Tsutomu; Ferguson-Smith, Anne C

    2010-08-15

    Uniparental disomy (UPD) refers to the situation in which both homologues of a chromosomal region/segment have originated from only one parent. This can involve the entire chromosome or only a small segment. As a consequence of UPD, or uniparental duplication/deficiency of part of a chromosome, there are two types of developmental risk: aberrant dosage of genes regulated by genomic imprinting and homozygosity of a recessive mutation. UPD models generated by reciprocal and Robertsonian translocation heterozygote intercrosses have been a powerful tool to investigate genomic imprinting in mice, whereas novel UPD patients such as those with cystic fibrosis and Prader-Willi syndrome, triggered the clarification of recessive diseases and genomic imprinting disorders in human. Newly developed genomic technologies as well as conventional microsatellite marker methods have been contributing to the functional and mechanistic investigation of UPD, leading to not only the acquisition of clinically valuable information, but also the further clarification of diverse genetic processes and disease pathogenesis.

  14. Mitochondrial Fusion Proteins and Human Diseases

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    Michela Ranieri

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Mitochondria are highly dynamic, complex organelles that continuously alter their shape, ranging between two opposite processes, fission and fusion, in response to several stimuli and the metabolic demands of the cell. Alterations in mitochondrial dynamics due to mutations in proteins involved in the fusion-fission machinery represent an important pathogenic mechanism of human diseases. The most relevant proteins involved in the mitochondrial fusion process are three GTPase dynamin-like proteins: mitofusin 1 (MFN1 and 2 (MFN2, located in the outer mitochondrial membrane, and optic atrophy protein 1 (OPA1, in the inner membrane. An expanding number of degenerative disorders are associated with mutations in the genes encoding MFN2 and OPA1, including Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease type 2A and autosomal dominant optic atrophy. While these disorders can still be considered rare, defective mitochondrial dynamics seem to play a significant role in the molecular and cellular pathogenesis of more common neurodegenerative diseases, for example, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. This review provides an overview of the basic molecular mechanisms involved in mitochondrial fusion and focuses on the alteration in mitochondrial DNA amount resulting from impairment of mitochondrial dynamics. We also review the literature describing the main disorders associated with the disruption of mitochondrial fusion.

  15. Human prion diseases in the United States.

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    Robert C Holman

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Prion diseases are a family of rare, progressive, neurodegenerative disorders that affect humans and animals. The most common form of human prion disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD, occurs worldwide. Variant CJD (vCJD, a recently emerged human prion disease, is a zoonotic foodborne disorder that occurs almost exclusively in countries with outbreaks of bovine spongiform encephalopathy. This study describes the occurrence and epidemiology of CJD and vCJD in the United States. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Analysis of CJD and vCJD deaths using death certificates of US residents for 1979-2006, and those identified through other surveillance mechanisms during 1996-2008. Since CJD is invariably fatal and illness duration is usually less than one year, the CJD incidence is estimated as the death rate. During 1979 through 2006, an estimated 6,917 deaths with CJD as a cause of death were reported in the United States, an annual average of approximately 247 deaths (range 172-304 deaths. The average annual age-adjusted incidence for CJD was 0.97 per 1,000,000 persons. Most (61.8% of the CJD deaths occurred among persons >or=65 years of age for an average annual incidence of 4.8 per 1,000,000 persons in this population. Most deaths were among whites (94.6%; the age-adjusted incidence for whites was 2.7 times higher than that for blacks (1.04 and 0.40, respectively. Three patients who died since 2004 were reported with vCJD; epidemiologic evidence indicated that their infection was acquired outside of the United States. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: Surveillance continues to show an annual CJD incidence rate of about 1 case per 1,000,000 persons and marked differences in CJD rates by age and race in the United States. Ongoing surveillance remains important for monitoring the stability of the CJD incidence rates, and detecting occurrences of vCJD and possibly other novel prion diseases in the United States.

  16. The evolution of signaling complexity suggests a mechanism for reducing the genomic search space in human association studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irizarry, K J L; Merriman, B; Bahamonde, M E; Wong, M-L; Licinio, J

    2005-01-01

    the genome. We suggest that the development and use of theoretical models can provide insight into the nature of biological systems and may lead to significant improvements in computational algorithms designed to reduce the complexity of the human genome.

  17. Convergent evidence from mouse and human studies suggests the involvement of zinc finger protein 326 gene in antidepressant treatment response.

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    Ying-Jay Liou

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVES: The forced swim test (FST is a commonly used model to predict antidepressant efficacy. Uncovering the genetic basis of the model may unravel the mechanism of antidepressant treatment. METHODS: FVB/NJ (FVB and C57BL/6J (B6 were first identified as the response and non-response strains to fluoxetine (a serotonin-specific reuptake inhibitor antidepressant treatment in the mouse FST. Simple-interval (SIM and composite-interval (CIM mappings were applied to map the quantitative trait loci (QTLs of the anti-immobility effect of fluoxetine in FST (FST(FLX in 865 male B6×FVB-F2 mice. The brain mRNA expressions of the gene with the maximum QTL-linkage signal for FST(FLX after the FST were compared between B6 and FVB mice and also compared between fluoxetine and saline treatment. The association of the variants in the human homologue of the mouse FST(FLX-QTL gene with major depressive disorder (MDD and antidepressant response were investigated in 1080 human subjects (MDD/control = 582/498. RESULTS: One linkage signal for FST(FLX-QTL was detected at an intronic SNP (rs6215396 of the mouse Zfp326 gene (maximal CIM-LOD = 9.36. The Zfp326 mRNA expression in the FVB thalamus was significantly down-regulated by fluoxetine in the FST, and the higher FVB-to-B6 Zfp326 mRNA expressions in the frontal cortex, striatum and hypothalamus diminished after fluoxetine treatment. Two coding-synonymous SNPs (rs2816881 and rs10922744 in the human homologue of Zfp326, ZNF326, were significantly associated with the 8-week antidepressant treatment response in the MDD patients (Bonferroni-corrected p = 0.004-0.028. CONCLUSIONS: The findings suggest the involvement of the Zfp326 and ZNF326 genes in antidepressant treatment response.

  18. Genetic control of human brain transcript expression in Alzheimer disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webster, Jennifer A; Gibbs, J Raphael; Clarke, Jennifer; Ray, Monika; Zhang, Weixiong; Holmans, Peter; Rohrer, Kristen; Zhao, Alice; Marlowe, Lauren; Kaleem, Mona; McCorquodale, Donald S; Cuello, Cindy; Leung, Doris; Bryden, Leslie; Nath, Priti; Zismann, Victoria L; Joshipura, Keta; Huentelman, Matthew J; Hu-Lince, Diane; Coon, Keith D; Craig, David W; Pearson, John V; Heward, Christopher B; Reiman, Eric M; Stephan, Dietrich; Hardy, John; Myers, Amanda J

    2009-04-01

    We recently surveyed the relationship between the human brain transcriptome and genome in a series of neuropathologically normal postmortem samples. We have now analyzed additional samples with a confirmed pathologic diagnosis of late-onset Alzheimer disease (LOAD; final n = 188 controls, 176 cases). Nine percent of the cortical transcripts that we analyzed had expression profiles correlated with their genotypes in the combined cohort, and approximately 5% of transcripts had SNP-transcript relationships that could distinguish LOAD samples. Two of these transcripts have been previously implicated in LOAD candidate-gene SNP-expression screens. This study shows how the relationship between common inherited genetic variants and brain transcript expression can be used in the study of human brain disorders. We suggest that studying the transcriptome as a quantitative endo-phenotype has greater power for discovering risk SNPs influencing expression than the use of discrete diagnostic categories such as presence or absence of disease.

  19. Overlapping gene structure of the human neuropeptide Y receptor subtypes Y1 and Y5 suggests coordinate transcriptional regulation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Herzog, H.; Darby, K.; Ball, H. [St. Vincent`s Hospital, Sydney (Australia)] [and others

    1997-05-01

    The human y1 and y5 receptor genes are transcribed in opposite directions from a common promoter region on chromosome 4q31-q32. One of the alternately spliced 5{prime} exons of the y1 receptor gene (1C) is also an integral part of the coding region of a novel neuropeptide Y receptor, Y5. Exon 1C of the y1 receptor gene, if translated from the opposite strand, encodes sequences corresponding to the large third intracellular loop of the Y5 receptor. The close proximity of the two neuropeptide Y receptor genes suggests that they have evolved from a gene duplication event with the small intron interrupting the coding sequence of the y1 gene being converted into a functional sequence within the y5 gene, while the reverse complementary sequence was utilized as an alternatively spliced 5{prime} exon for the y1 gene. The transcription of both genes from opposite strands of the same DNA sequence suggests that transcriptional activation of one will have an effect on the regulation of gene expression of the other. As both Y1 and Y5 receptors are thought to play an important role in the regulation of food intake, coordinate expression of their specific genes may be important in the modulation of NPY activity. 23 refs., 2 figs.

  20. Curcumin interaction with copper and iron suggests one possible mechanism of action in Alzheimer's disease animal models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baum, Larry; Ng, Alex

    2004-08-01

    Curcumin is a polyphenolic diketone from turmeric. Because of its anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, it was tested in animal models of Alzheimer's disease, reducing levels of amyloid and oxidized proteins and preventing cognitive deficits. An alternative mechanism of these effects is metal chelation, which may reduce amyloid aggregation or oxidative neurotoxicity. Metals can induce Abeta aggregation and toxicity, and are concentrated in AD brain. Chelators desferrioxamine and clioquinol have exhibited anti-AD effects. Using spectrophotometry, we quantified curcumin affinity for copper, zinc, and iron ions. Zn2+ showed little binding, but each Cu2+ or Fe2+ ion appeared to bind at least two curcumin molecules. The interaction of curcumin with copper reached half-maximum at approximately 3-12 microM copper and exhibited positive cooperativity, with Kd1 approximately 10-60 microM and Kd2 approximately 1.3 microM (for binding of the first and second curcumin molecules, respectively). Curcumin-iron interaction reached half-maximum at approximately 2.5-5 microM iron and exhibited negative cooperativity, with Kd1 approximately 0.5-1.6 microM and Kd2 approximately 50-100 microM. Curcumin and its metabolites can attain these levels in vivo, suggesting physiological relevance. Since curcumin more readily binds the redox-active metals iron and copper than redox-inactive zinc, curcumin might exert a net protective effect against Abeta toxicity or might suppress inflammatory damage by preventing metal induction of NF-kappaB.

  1. Genome-Wide Association Studies Suggest Limited Immune Gene Enrichment in Schizophrenia Compared to 5 Autoimmune Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pouget, Jennie G; Gonçalves, Vanessa F; Spain, Sarah L; Finucane, Hilary K; Raychaudhuri, Soumya; Kennedy, James L; Knight, Jo

    2016-09-01

    There has been intense debate over the immunological basis of schizophrenia, and the potential utility of adjunct immunotherapies. The major histocompatibility complex is consistently the most powerful region of association in genome-wide association studies (GWASs) of schizophrenia and has been interpreted as strong genetic evidence supporting the immune hypothesis. However, global pathway analyses provide inconsistent evidence of immune involvement in schizophrenia, and it remains unclear whether genetic data support an immune etiology per se. Here we empirically test the hypothesis that variation in immune genes contributes to schizophrenia. We show that there is no enrichment of immune loci outside of the MHC region in the largest genetic study of schizophrenia conducted to date, in contrast to 5 diseases of known immune origin. Among 108 regions of the genome previously associated with schizophrenia, we identify 6 immune candidates (DPP4, HSPD1, EGR1, CLU, ESAM, NFATC3) encoding proteins with alternative, nonimmune roles in the brain. While our findings do not refute evidence that has accumulated in support of the immune hypothesis, they suggest that genetically mediated alterations in immune function may not play a major role in schizophrenia susceptibility. Instead, there may be a role for pleiotropic effects of a small number of immune genes that also regulate brain development and plasticity. Whether immune alterations drive schizophrenia progression is an important question to be addressed by future research, especially in light of the growing interest in applying immunotherapies in schizophrenia. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center.

  2. Serum Levels of Human MIC-1/GDF15 Vary in a Diurnal Pattern, Do Not Display a Profile Suggestive of a Satiety Factor and Are Related to BMI.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vicky Wang-Wei Tsai

    Full Text Available The TGF-b superfamily cytokine MIC-1/GDF15 circulates in the blood of healthy humans. Its levels rise substantially in cancer and other diseases and this may sometimes lead to development of an anorexia/cachexia syndrome. This is mediated by a direct action of MIC-1/GDF15 on feeding centres in the hypothalamus and brainstem. More recent studies in germline gene deleted mice also suggest that this cytokine may play a role in physiological regulation of energy homeostasis. To further characterize the role of MIC-1/GDF15 in physiological regulation of energy homeostasis in man, we have examined diurnal and food associated variation in serum levels and whether variation in circulating levels relate to BMI in human monozygotic twin pairs. We found that the within twin pair differences in serum MIC-1/GDF15 levels were significantly correlated with within twin pair differences in BMI, suggesting a role for MIC-1/GDF15 in the regulation of energy balance in man. MIC-1/GDF15 serum levels altered slightly in response to a meal, but comparison with variation its serum levels over a 24 hour period suggested that these changes are likely to be due to bimodal diurnal variation which can alter serum MIC-1/GDF15 levels by about plus or minus 10% from the mesor. The lack of a rapid and substantial postprandial increase in MIC-1/GDF15 serum levels suggests that MIC1/GDF15 is unlikely to act as a satiety factor. Taken together, our findings suggest that MIC-1/GDF15 may be a physiological regulator of energy homeostasis in man, most probably due to actions on long-term regulation of energy homeostasis.

  3. HIV and the spectrum of human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucas, Sebastian; Nelson, Ann Marie

    2015-01-01

    Infection with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) causes systemic T cell destruction and reduced cell-mediated immunity that leads to a wide range of opportunistic infections and cancers. Second, it directly damages many tissues - gut, brain, lung - through mononuclear cell infection and activation. Third, through immune activation and effects on endothelia, it can cause more subtle systemic organ damage, such as chronic cardiovascular, hepatic, pulmonary and central nervous system disease. Antiretroviral treatment has enabled HIV-infected persons to live with chronic infection, although with some side-effects and mortality, including reactions due to the immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome (IRIS). As cohorts of infected people get older, age-related diseases will combine with chronic HIV infection to produce disabilities whose scale is not yet understood. HIV is detectable in tissues by immunohistochemistry when infection loads are high, such as at first presentation. Pathologists should proactively consider HIV disease in routine diagnostic work, so as to identify more HIV-infected patients and enable their optimal management.

  4. Blood type biochemistry and human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ewald, D Rose; Sumner, Susan C J

    2016-11-01

    Associations between blood type and disease have been studied since the early 1900s when researchers determined that antibodies and antigens are inherited. In the 1950s, the chemical identification of the carbohydrate structure of surface antigens led to the understanding of biosynthetic pathways. The blood type is defined by oligosaccharide structures, which are specific to the antigens, thus, blood group antigens are secondary gene products, while the primary gene products are various glycosyltransferase enzymes that attach the sugar molecules to the oligosaccharide chain. Blood group antigens are found on red blood cells, platelets, leukocytes, plasma proteins, certain tissues, and various cell surface enzymes, and also exist in soluble form in body secretions such as breast milk, seminal fluid, saliva, sweat, gastric secretions, urine, and amniotic fluid. Recent advances in technology, biochemistry, and genetics have clarified the functional classifications of human blood group antigens, the structure of the A, B, H, and Lewis determinants and the enzymes that produce them, and the association of blood group antigens with disease risks. Further research to identify differences in the biochemical composition of blood group antigens, and the relationship to risks for disease, can be important for the identification of targets for the development of nutritional intervention strategies, or the identification of druggable targets. WIREs Syst Biol Med 2016, 8:517-535. doi: 10.1002/wsbm.1355 For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website.

  5. HECT E3s and human disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Staub Olivier

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract In a simplified view, members of the HECT E3 family have a modular structure consisting of the C-terminal HECT domain, which is catalytically involved in the attachment of ubiquitin to substrate proteins, and N-terminal extensions of variable length and sequence that mediate the substrate specificity of the respective HECT E3. Although the physiologically relevant substrates of most HECT E3s have remained elusive, it is becoming increasingly clear that HECT E3s play an important role in sporadic and hereditary human diseases including cancer, cardiovascular (Liddle's syndrome and neurological (Angelman syndrome disorders, and/or in disease-relevant processes including bone homeostasis, immune response and retroviral budding. Thus, molecular approaches to target the activity of distinct HECT E3s, regulators thereof, and/or of HECT E3 substrates could prove valuable in the treatment of the respective diseases. Publication history: Republished from Current BioData's Targeted Proteins database (TPdb; http://www.targetedproteinsdb.com.

  6. Nutrition, epigenetics, and developmental plasticity: implications for understanding human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burdge, Graham C; Lillycrop, Karen A

    2010-08-21

    There is considerable evidence for induction of differential risk of noncommunicable diseases in humans by variation in the quality of the early life environment. Studies in animal models show that induction and stability of induced changes in the phenotype of the offspring involve altered epigenetic regulation by DNA methylation and covalent modifications of histones. These findings indicate that such epigenetic changes are highly gene specific and function at the level of individual CpG dinucleotides. Interventions using supplementation with folic acid or methyl donors during pregnancy, or folic acid after weaning, alter the phenotype and epigenotype induced by maternal dietary constraint during gestation. This suggests a possible means for reducing risk of induced noncommunicable disease, although the design and conduct of such interventions may require caution. The purpose of this review is to discuss recent advances in understanding the mechanism that underlies the early life origins of disease and to place these studies in a broader life-course context.

  7. Diet, disease and pigment variation in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, R; Khan, B S Razib

    2010-10-01

    There are several hypotheses which explain the de-pigmentation of humans. The most prominent environmental explanation is that reduced endogenous vitamin D production due to diminished radiation at higher latitudes had a deleterious impact on fitness. This drove de-pigmentation as an adaptive response. A model of natural selection explains the high correlations found between low vitamin D levels and ill health, as vitamin D's role in immune response has clear evolutionary implications. But recent genomic techniques have highlighted the likelihood that extreme de-pigmentation in Eurasia is a feature of the last 10,000years, not the Upper Pleistocene, when modern humans first settled northern Eurasia. Additionally the data imply two independent selection events in eastern and western Eurasia. Therefore new parameters must be added to the model of natural selection so as to explain the relatively recent and parallel adaptive responses. I propose a model of gene-culture co-evolution whereby the spread of agriculture both reduced dietary vitamin D sources and led to more powerful selection on immune response because of the rise of infectious diseases with greater population densities. This model explains the persistence of relatively dark-skinned peoples at relatively high latitudes and the existence of relatively light-skinned populations at low latitudes. It also reinforces the importance of vitamin D as a micronutrient because of the evidence of extremely powerful fitness implications in the recent human past of pigmentation. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Evolutionary history of human disease genes reveals phenotypic connections and comorbidity among genetic diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Solip; Yang, Jae-Seong; Kim, Jinho; Shin, Young-Eun; Hwang, Jihye; Park, Juyong; Jang, Sung Key; Kim, Sanguk

    2012-01-01

    The extent to which evolutionary changes have impacted the phenotypic relationships among human diseases remains unclear. In this work, we report that phenotypically similar diseases are connected by the evolutionary constraints on human disease genes. Human disease groups can be classified into slowly or rapidly evolving classes, where the diseases in the slowly evolving class are enriched with morphological phenotypes and those in the rapidly evolving class are enriched with physiological phenotypes. Our findings establish a clear evolutionary connection between disease classes and disease phenotypes for the first time. Furthermore, the high comorbidity found between diseases connected by similar evolutionary constraints enables us to improve the predictability of the relative risk of human diseases. We find the evolutionary constraints on disease genes are a new layer of molecular connection in the network-based exploration of human diseases.

  9. Proteins Encoded in Genomic Regions Associated with Immune-Mediated Disease Physically Interact and Suggest Underlying Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rossin, Elizabeth J.; Hansen, Kasper Lage; Raychaudhuri, Soumya

    2011-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have defined over 150 genomic regions unequivocally containing variation predisposing to immune-mediated disease. Inferring disease biology from these observations, however, hinges on our ability to discover the molecular processes being perturbed by these r......Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have defined over 150 genomic regions unequivocally containing variation predisposing to immune-mediated disease. Inferring disease biology from these observations, however, hinges on our ability to discover the molecular processes being perturbed......-immune traits to assess its applicability to complex traits in general. We find that genes in loci associated to height and lipid levels assemble into significantly connected networks but did not detect excess connectivity among Type 2 Diabetes (T2D) loci beyond chance. Taken together, our results constitute...

  10. Integration of transcriptomic and genomic data suggests candidate mechanisms for APOE4-mediated pathogenic action in Alzheimer’s disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caberlotto, Laura; Marchetti, Luca; Lauria, Mario; Scotti, Marco; Parolo, Silvia

    2016-09-01

    Among the genetic factors known to increase the risk of late onset Alzheimer’s diseases (AD), the presence of the apolipoproteine e4 (APOE4) allele has been recognized as the one with the strongest effect. However, despite decades of research, the pathogenic role of APOE4 in Alzheimer’s disease has not been clearly elucidated yet. In order to investigate the pathogenic action of APOE4, we applied a systems biology approach to the analysis of transcriptomic and genomic data of APOE44 vs. APOE33 allele carriers affected by Alzheimer’s disease. Network analysis combined with a novel technique for biomarker computation allowed the identification of an alteration in aging-associated processes such as inflammation, oxidative stress and metabolic pathways, indicating that APOE4 possibly accelerates pathological processes physiologically induced by aging. Subsequent integration with genomic data indicates that the Notch pathway could be the nodal molecular mechanism altered in APOE44 allele carriers with Alzheimer’s disease. Interestingly, PSEN1 and APP, genes whose mutation are known to be linked to early onset Alzheimer’s disease, are closely linked to this pathway. In conclusion, APOE4 role on inflammation and oxidation through the Notch signaling pathway could be crucial in elucidating the risk factors of Alzheimer’s disease.

  11. Functional characterization of a competitive peptide antagonist of p65 in human macrophage-like cells suggests therapeutic potential for chronic inflammation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Srinivasan M

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Mythily Srinivasan,1 Corinne Blackburn,1 Debomoy K Lahiri2,3 1Department of Oral Pathology, Medicine and Radiology, Indiana University School of Dentistry, 2Institute of Psychiatry Research, Department of Psychiatry, 3Department of Medical and Molecular Genetics, School of Medicine, Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis, IN, USA Abstract: Glucocorticoid-induced leucine zipper (GILZ is a glucocorticoid responsive protein that links the nuclear factor-kappa B (NFκB and the glucocorticoid signaling pathways. Functional and binding studies suggest that the proline-rich region at the carboxy terminus of GILZ binds the p65 subunit of NFκB and suppresses the immunoinflammatory response. A widely-used strategy in the discovery of peptide drugs involves exploitation of the complementary surfaces of naturally occurring binding partners. Previously, we observed that a synthetic peptide (GILZ-P derived from the proline-rich region of GILZ bound activated p65 and ameliorated experimental encephalomyelitis. Here we characterize the secondary structure of GILZ-P by circular dichroic analysis. GILZ-P adopts an extended polyproline type II helical conformation consistent with the structural conformation commonly observed in interfaces of transient intermolecular interactions. To determine the potential application of GILZ-P in humans, we evaluated the toxicity and efficacy of the peptide drug in mature human macrophage-like THP-1 cells. Treatment with GILZ-P at a wide range of concentrations commonly used for peptide drugs was nontoxic as determined by cell viability and apoptosis assays. Functionally, GILZ-P suppressed proliferation and glutamate secretion by activated macrophages by inhibiting nuclear translocation of p65. Collectively, our data suggest that the GILZ-P has therapeutic potential in chronic CNS diseases where persistent inflammation leads to neurodegeneration such as multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer’s disease. Keywords

  12. Human Rights Education in Japan: An Historical Account, Characteristics and Suggestions for a Better-Balanced Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeda, Sachiko

    2012-01-01

    Although human rights are often expressed as universal tenets, the concept was conceived in a particular socio-political and historical context. Conceptualisations and practice of human rights vary across societies, and face numerous challenges. After providing an historical account of the conceptualisation of human rights in Japanese society,…

  13. Human Rights Education in Japan: An Historical Account, Characteristics and Suggestions for a Better-Balanced Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeda, Sachiko

    2012-01-01

    Although human rights are often expressed as universal tenets, the concept was conceived in a particular socio-political and historical context. Conceptualisations and practice of human rights vary across societies, and face numerous challenges. After providing an historical account of the conceptualisation of human rights in Japanese society,…

  14. Beyond the zebrafish: diverse fish species for modeling human disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manfred Schartl

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available In recent years, zebrafish, and to a lesser extent medaka, have become widely used small animal models for human diseases. These organisms have convincingly demonstrated the usefulness of fish for improving our understanding of the molecular and cellular mechanisms leading to pathological conditions, and for the development of new diagnostic and therapeutic tools. Despite the usefulness of zebrafish and medaka in the investigation of a wide spectrum of traits, there is evidence to suggest that other fish species could be better suited for more targeted questions. With the emergence of new, improved sequencing technologies that enable genomic resources to be generated with increasing efficiency and speed, the potential of non-mainstream fish species as disease models can now be explored. A key feature of these fish species is that the pathological condition that they model is often related to specific evolutionary adaptations. By exploring these adaptations, new disease-causing and disease-modifier genes might be identified; thus, diverse fish species could be exploited to better understand the complexity of disease processes. In addition, non-mainstream fish models could allow us to study the impact of environmental factors, as well as genetic variation, on complex disease phenotypes. This Review will discuss the opportunities that such fish models offer for current and future biomedical research.

  15. Human KATP channelopathies: diseases of metabolic homeostasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    Assembly of an inward rectifier K+ channel pore (Kir6.1/Kir6.2) and an adenosine triphosphate (ATP)-binding regulatory subunit (SUR1/SUR2A/SUR2B) forms ATP-sensitive K+ (KATP) channel heteromultimers, widely distributed in metabolically active tissues throughout the body. KATP channels are metabolism-gated biosensors functioning as molecular rheostats that adjust membrane potential-dependent functions to match cellular energetic demands. Vital in the adaptive response to (patho)physiological stress, KATP channels serve a homeostatic role ranging from glucose regulation to cardioprotection. Accordingly, genetic variation in KATP channel subunits has been linked to the etiology of life-threatening human diseases. In particular, pathogenic mutations in KATP channels have been identified in insulin secretion disorders, namely, congenital hyperinsulinism and neonatal diabetes. Moreover, KATP channel defects underlie the triad of developmental delay, epilepsy, and neonatal diabetes (DEND syndrome). KATP channelopathies implicated in patients with mechanical and/or electrical heart disease include dilated cardiomyopathy (with ventricular arrhythmia; CMD1O) and adrenergic atrial fibrillation. A common Kir6.2 E23K polymorphism has been associated with late-onset diabetes and as a risk factor for maladaptive cardiac remodeling in the community-at-large and abnormal cardiopulmonary exercise stress performance in patients with heart failure. The overall mutation frequency within KATP channel genes and the spectrum of genotype–phenotype relationships remain to be established, while predicting consequences of a deficit in channel function is becoming increasingly feasible through systems biology approaches. Thus, advances in molecular medicine in the emerging field of human KATP channelopathies offer new opportunities for targeted individualized screening, early diagnosis, and tailored therapy. PMID:20033705

  16. Major trends in human parasitic diseases in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ting; He, Shenyi; Zhao, Hong; Zhao, Guanghui; Zhu, Xing-Quan

    2010-05-01

    Tremendous progress has been made in the control and prevention of human parasitic diseases in mainland China in the past 30 years because of China's Reform and Opening to the Outside Policies initiated in 1978. However, parasitic diseases remain a major human health problem, with significant morbidity and mortality as well as adverse socioeconomic consequences. Although soil-transmitted parasitic diseases are in the process of being gradually controlled, food-borne parasitic diseases and emerging parasitic diseases are becoming the focus of new campaigns for control and prevention. This article reviews major trends in human parasitic diseases in mainland China, with perspectives for control.

  17. Wolbachia endosymbionts and human disease control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slatko, Barton E; Luck, Ashley N; Dobson, Stephen L; Foster, Jeremy M

    2014-07-01

    Most human filarial nematode parasites and arthropods are hosts for a bacterial endosymbiont, Wolbachia. In filaria, Wolbachia are required for normal development, fertility and survival, whereas in arthropods, they are largely parasitic and can influence development and reproduction, but are generally not required for host survival. Due to their obligate nature in filarial parasites, Wolbachia have been a target for drug discovery initiatives using several approaches including diversity and focused library screening and genomic sequence analysis. In vitro and in vivo anti-Wolbachia antibiotic treatments have been shown to have adulticidal activity, a long sought goal of filarial parasite drug discovery. In mosquitoes, it has been shown that the presence of Wolbachia can inhibit the transmission of certain viruses, such as Dengue, Chikungunya, Yellow Fever, West Nile, as well as the infectivity of the malaria-causing protozoan, Plasmodium and filarial nematodes. Furthermore, Wolbachia can cause a form of conditional sterility that can be used to suppress populations of mosquitoes and additional medically important insects. Thus Wolbachia, a pandemic endosymbiont offers great potential for elimination of a wide-variety of devastating human diseases.

  18. Sex differences in early-life programming of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis in humans suggest increased vulnerability in females: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carpenter, T; Grecian, S M; Reynolds, R M

    2017-04-01

    Fetal glucocorticoid overexposure is a key mechanism linking early development with later-life disease. In humans, low birth weight associates with increased fasting cortisol, hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis reactivity, and with cardiovascular risk and cognitive decline. As there are sex differences in these adult diseases, we hypothesized that there may be sex differences in programming of the HPA axis in response to prenatal stressors. We conducted a systematic review following Meta-Analysis of Observational Studies in Epidemiology and Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis. We searched Embase, MEDLINE and Web of Science from inception to 31 October 2016. We included studies related to sex differences, prenatal exposures and HPA axis. We excluded studies investigating specific disease states. The 23 included studies investigated the consequences of low birth weight, preterm birth and maternal stressors of asthma, psychosocial stress and glucocorticoid medications on HPA axis outcomes of placental glucocorticoid biology and offspring HPA axis function in early life and later life. Female offspring exposed to stressors had increased HPA axis reactivity compared with males. Furthermore, the female placenta increased its permeability to maternal glucocorticoids following maternal stress with changes in the expression of 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase enzymes in response to maternal glucocorticoid exposure or asthma. Among males there was some evidence of altered diurnal cortisol secretion. We conclude that although there is some evidence of male vulnerability leading to altered diurnal cortisol secretion, the female HPA axis is more vulnerable to programming, particularly in terms of its reactivity; this suggests a mechanism underlying sex differences in later-life diseases.

  19. Heterogeneous duplications in patients with Pelizaeus-Merzbacher disease suggest a mechanism of coupled homologous and nonhomologous recombination.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Woodward, K.J.; Cundall, M.; Sperle, K.; Sistermans, E.A.; Ross, M.; Howell, G.R.; Gribble, S.M.; Burford, D.C.; Carter, N.P.; Hobson, D.L.; Garbern, J.Y.; Kamholz, J.A.; Heng, H.; Hodes, M.E.; Malcolm, S.; Hobson, G.M.

    2005-01-01

    We describe genomic structures of 59 X-chromosome segmental duplications that include the proteolipid protein 1 gene (PLP1) in patients with Pelizaeus-Merzbacher disease. We provide the first report of 13 junction sequences, which gives insight into underlying mechanisms. Although proximal breakpoin

  20. Multivariate analysis of maize disease resistances suggests a pleiotropic genetic basis and implicates a glutathione S-transferase gene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plants are attacked by pathogens representing diverse taxonomic groups, such that genes providing multiple disease resistance (MDR) would likely be under positive selection pressure. We examined the novel proposition that naturally occurring allelic variants may confer MDR. To do so, we applied a ...

  1. MicroRNAs in Human Diseases: From Autoimmune Diseases to Skin, Psychiatric and Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ha, Tai-You

    2011-10-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding RNA molecules that negatively regulate gene expression via degradation or translational repression of their target messenger RNAs (mRNAs). Recent studies have clearly demonstrated that miRNAs play critical roles in several biologic processes, including cell cycle, differentiation, cell development, cell growth, and apoptosis and that miRNAs are highly expressed in regulatory T (Treg) cells and a wide range of miRNAs are involved in the regulation of immunity and in the prevention of autoimmunity. It has been increasingly reported that miRNAs are associated with various human diseases like autoimmune disease, skin disease, neurological disease and psychiatric disease. Recently, the identification of mi- RNAs in skin has added a new dimension in the regulatory network and attracted significant interest in this novel layer of gene regulation. Although miRNA research in the field of dermatology is still relatively new, miRNAs have been the subject of much dermatological interest in skin morphogenesis and in regulating angiogenesis. In addition, miRNAs are moving rapidly onto center stage as key regulators of neuronal development and function in addition to important contributions to neurodegenerative disorder. Moreover, there is now compelling evidence that dysregulation of miRNA networks is implicated in the development and onset of human neruodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, Tourette's syndrome, Down syndrome, depression and schizophrenia. In this review, I briefly summarize the current studies about the roles of miRNAs in various autoimmune diseases, skin diseases, psychoneurological disorders and mental stress.

  2. Molecular Mechanism of Adult Neurogenesis and its Association with Human Brain Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, He; Song, Ni

    2016-01-01

    Recent advances in neuroscience challenge the old dogma that neurogenesis occurs only during embryonic development. Mounting evidence suggests that functional neurogenesis occurs throughout adulthood. This review article discusses molecular factors that affect adult neurogenesis, including morphogens, growth factors, neurotransmitters, transcription factors, and epigenetic factors. Furthermore, we summarize and compare current evidence of associations between adult neurogenesis and human brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, and brain tumors. PMID:27375363

  3. Heart Disease: A Price Humans Pay for Fertility?

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... page: https://medlineplus.gov/news/fullstory_166826.html Heart Disease: A Price Humans Pay for Fertility? Study finds ... 22, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Certain genes linked to heart disease may also improve your chances of having children, ...

  4. Analysis of striatal transcriptome in mice overexpressing human wild-type alpha-synuclein supports synaptic dysfunction and suggests mechanisms of neuroprotection for striatal neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cabeza-Arvelaiz Yofre

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Alpha synuclein (SNCA has been linked to neurodegenerative diseases (synucleinopathies that include Parkinson's disease (PD. Although the primary neurodegeneration in PD involves nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons, more extensive yet regionally selective neurodegeneration is observed in other synucleinopathies. Furthermore, SNCA is ubiquitously expressed in neurons and numerous neuronal systems are dysfunctional in PD. Therefore it is of interest to understand how overexpression of SNCA affects neuronal function in regions not directly targeted for neurodegeneration in PD. Results The present study investigated the consequences of SNCA overexpression on cellular processes and functions in the striatum of mice overexpressing wild-type, human SNCA under the Thy1 promoter (Thy1-aSyn mice by transcriptome analysis. The analysis revealed alterations in multiple biological processes in the striatum of Thy1-aSyn mice, including synaptic plasticity, signaling, transcription, apoptosis, and neurogenesis. Conclusion The results support a key role for SNCA in synaptic function and revealed an apoptotic signature in Thy1-aSyn mice, which together with specific alterations of neuroprotective genes suggest the activation of adaptive compensatory mechanisms that may protect striatal neurons in conditions of neuronal overexpression of SNCA.

  5. Mitochondrial regulation of epigenetics and its role in human diseases

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Minocherhomji, Sheroy; Tollefsbol, Trygve O; Singh, Keshav K

    2012-01-01

    Most pathogenic mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) mutations induce defects in mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS). However, phenotypic effects of these mutations show a large degree of variation depending on the tissue affected. These differences are difficult to reconcile with OXPHOS...... as the sole pathogenic factor suggesting that additional mechanisms contribute to lack of genotype and clinical phenotype correlationship. An increasing number of studies have identified a possible effect on the epigenetic landscape of the nuclear genome as a consequence of mitochondrial dysfunction...... to epigenetic changes causing genomic instability in the nuclear genome. We propose that "mitocheckpoint" mediated epigenetic and genetic changes may play key roles in phenotypic variation related to mitochondrial diseases or host of human diseases in which mitochondrial defect plays a primary role....

  6. Intensity of human prion disease surveillance predicts observed disease incidence

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    G.M. Klug (Genevieve); H. Wand (Handan); M. Simpson (Marion); A. Boyd (Alison); M. Law (Matthew); C. Masters (Colin); R. Mateǰ (Radoslav); R. Howley (Rachel); M. Farrell (Michael); M. Breithaupt; I. Zerr (Inga); C.M. van Duijn (Cock); C.A. Ibrahim-Verbaas (Carla); J. Mackenzie; R.G. Will (Robert); J-P. Brandel (Jean-Philippe); A. Alperovitch (Annick); H. Budka (Herbert); G.G. Kovacs (Gabor); G.H. Jansen (Gerard); M. Coulthard (Michael); S.J. Collins (Steven)

    2013-01-01

    textabstractBackground: Prospective national screening and surveillance programmes serve a range of public health functions. Objectively determining their adequacy and impact on disease may be problematic for rare disorders. We undertook to assess whether objective measures of disease surveillance

  7. Myeloid dendritic cells are potential players in human neurodegenerative diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paola eBossù

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Alzheimer’s (AD and Parkinson’s (PD diseases are devastating neurodegenerative disturbances wherein neuroinflammation is a chronic pathogenic process with high therapeutic potential. Major mediators of AD/PD neuroimmune processes are resident immune cells, but immune cells derived from periphery may also participate and to some extent modify neuroinflammation. Specifically, blood borne myeloid cells emerge as crucial components of AD/PD progression and susceptibility. Among these, dendritic cells (DCs are key immune orchestrators and players of brain immune surveillance: we candidate them as potential mediators of both AD and PD and as relevant cell model for unraveling myeloid cell role in neurodegeneration. Hence, we recapitulate and discuss emerging data suggesting that blood-derived DCs play a role in experimental and human neurodegenerative diseases. In humans, in particular, DCs are modified by in vitro culture with neurodegeneration-associated pathogenic factors and dysregulated in AD patients, while the levels of DC precursors are decreased in AD and PD patients’ blood, possibly as an index of their recruitment to the brain. Overall, we emphasize the need to explore the impact of DCs on neurodegeneration to uncover peripheral immune mechanisms of pathogenic importance, recognize potential biomarkers and improve therapeutic approaches for neurodegenerative diseases.

  8. Expression of PROKR1 and PROKR2 in human enteric neural precursor cells and identification of sequence variants suggest a role in HSCR.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Macarena Ruiz-Ferrer

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The enteric nervous system (ENS is entirely derived from neural crest and its normal development is regulated by specific molecular pathways. Failure in complete ENS formation results in aganglionic gut conditions such as Hirschsprung's disease (HSCR. Recently, PROKR1 expression has been demonstrated in mouse enteric neural crest derived cells and Prok-1 was shown to work coordinately with GDNF in the development of the ENS. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In the present report, ENS progenitors were isolated and characterized from the ganglionic gut from children diagnosed with and without HSCR, and the expression of prokineticin receptors was examined. Immunocytochemical analysis of neurosphere-forming cells demonstrated that both PROKR1 and PROKR2 were present in human enteric neural crest cells. In addition, we also performed a mutational analysis of PROKR1, PROKR2, PROK1 and PROK2 genes in a cohort of HSCR patients, evaluating them for the first time as susceptibility genes for the disease. Several missense variants were detected, most of them affecting highly conserved amino acid residues of the protein and located in functional domains of both receptors, which suggests a possible deleterious effect in their biological function. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that not only PROKR1, but also PROKR2 might mediate a complementary signalling to the RET/GFRα1/GDNF pathway supporting proliferation/survival and differentiation of precursor cells during ENS development. These findings, together with the detection of sequence variants in PROKR1, PROK1 and PROKR2 genes associated to HSCR and, in some cases in combination with RET or GDNF mutations, provide the first evidence to consider them as susceptibility genes for HSCR.

  9. Genome-wide gene expression analysis suggests an important role of hypoxia in the pathogenesis of endemic osteochondropathy Kashin-Beck disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Feng Zhang

    Full Text Available Kashin-Beck Disease (KBD is an endemic osteochondropathy, the pathogenesis of which remains unclear now. In this study, we compared gene expression profiles of articular cartilage derived respectively from KBD patients and normal controls. Total RNA were isolated, amplified, labeled and hybridized to Agilent human 1A 22 k whole genome microarray chip. qRT-PCR was conducted to validate our microarray data. We detected 57 up-regulated genes (ratios ≥2.0 and 24 down-regulated genes (ratios ≤0.5 in KBD cartilage. To further identify the key genes involved in the pathogenesis of KBD, Bayesian analysis of variance for microarrays (BAM software was applied and identified 12 potential key genes with an average ratio 6.64, involved in apoptosis, metabolism, cytokine & growth factor and cytoskeleton & cell movement. Gene Set Enrichment Analysis (GSEA software was used to identify differently expressed gene ontology categories and pathways. GSEA found that a set of apoptosis, hypoxia and mitochondrial function related gene ontology categories and pathways were significantly up-regulated in KBD compared to normal controls. Based on the results of this study, we suggest that chronic hypoxia-induced mitochondrial damage and apoptosis might play an important role in the pathogenesis of KBD. Our efforts may help to understand the pathogenesis of KBD as well as other osteoarthrosis with similar articular cartilage lesions.

  10. Expression analyses of human cleft palate tissue suggest a role for osteopontin and immune related factors in palatal development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jakobsen, L.P.; Borup, R.; Vestergaard, J.;

    2009-01-01

    . Moreover, selected differentially expressed genes were analyzed by quantitative RT-PCR, and by immunohistochemical staining of craniofacial tissue from human embryos. Osteopontin (SPP1) and other immune related genes were significantly higher expressed in palate tissue from patients with CLP compared to CP...... and palate (CLP). In order to understand the biological basis in these cleft lip and palate subgroups better we studied the expression profiles in human tissue from patients with CL/P. In each of the CL/P subgroups, samples were obtained from three patients and gene expression analysis was performed...... and immunostaining in palatal shelves against SPP1, chemokine receptor 4 (CXCR4) and serglycin (PRG1) in human embryonic craniofacial tissue were positive, supporting a role for these genes in palatal development. However, gene expression profiles are subject to variations during growth and therefore we recommend...

  11. Barcoding heat shock proteins to human diseases : looking beyond the heat shock response

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kakkar, Vaishali; Meister-Broekema, Melanie; Minoia, Melania; Carra, Serena; Kampinga, Harm H.

    There are numerous human diseases that are associated with protein misfolding and the formation of toxic protein aggregates. Activating the heat shock response (HSR) - and thus generally restoring the disturbed protein homeostasis associated with such diseases - has often been suggested as a

  12. Treatment-Seeking for Tuberculosis-Suggestive Symptoms: A Reflection on the Role of Human Agency in the Context of Universal Health Coverage in Malawi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumwenda, Moses; Desmond, Nicola; Hart, Graham; Choko, Augustine; Chipungu, Geoffrey A; Nyirenda, Deborah; Shand, Tim; Corbett, Elizabeth L; Chikovore, Jeremiah

    2016-01-01

    Tuberculosis (TB) is highly infectious and one of the leading killers globally. Several studies from sub-Saharan Africa highlight health systems challenges that affect ability to cope with existing disease burden, including TB, although most of these employ survey-type approaches. Consequently, few address community or patient perspectives and experiences. At the same time, understanding of the mechanisms by which the health systems challenges translate into seeking or avoidance of formal health care remains limited. This paper applies the notion of human agency to examine the ways people who have symptoms suggestive of TB respond to and deal with the symptoms vis-à-vis major challenges inherent within health delivery systems. Empirical data were drawn from a qualitative study exploring the ways in which notions of masculinity affect engagement with care, including men's well-documented tendency to delay in seeking care for TB symptoms. The study was carried out in three high-density locales of urban Blantyre, Malawi. Data were collected in March 2011 -March 2012 using focus group discussions, of which eight (mixed sex = two; female only = three; male only = three) were with 74 ordinary community members, and two (both mixed sex) were with 20 health workers; and in-depth interviews with 20 TB patients (female = 14) and 20 un-investigated chronic coughers (female = eight). The research process employed a modified version of grounded theory. Data were coded using a coding scheme that was initially generated from the study aims and subsequently progressively amended to incorporate concepts emerging during the analysis. Coded data were retrieved, re-read, and broken down and reconnected iteratively to generate themes. A myriad of problems were described for health systems at the primary health care level, centring largely on shortages of resources (human, equipment, and drugs) and unprofessional conduct by health care providers. Participants consistently pointed out

  13. Recent efforts to model human diseases in vivo in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfleger, Cathie M; Reiter, Lawrence T

    2008-01-01

    Upon completion of sequencing the Drosophila genome, it was estimated that 61% of human disease-associated genes had sequence homologs in flies, and in some diseases such as cancer, the number was as high as 68%. We now know that as many as 75% of the genes associated with genetic disease have counterparts in Drosophila. Using better tools for mutation detection, association studies and whole genome analysis the number of human genes associated with genetic disease is steadily increasing. These detection efforts are outpacing the ability to assign function and understand the underlying cause of the disease at the molecular level. Drosophila models can therefore advance human disease research in a number of ways by: establishing the normal role of these gene products during development, elucidating the mechanism underlying disease pathology, and even identifying candidate therapeutic agents for the treatment of human disease. At the 49(th) Annual Drosophila Research Conference in San Diego this year, a number of labs presented their exciting findings on Drosophila models of human disease in both platform presentations and poster sessions. Here we can only briefly review some of these developments, and we apologize that we do not have the time or space to review all of the findings presented which use Drosophila to understand human disease etiology.

  14. Human pluripotent stem cells: applications and challenges in neurological diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Youssef eHIBAOUI

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available The ability to generate human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs holds great promise for the understanding and the treatment of human neurological diseases in modern medicine. The hPSCs are considered for their in vitro use as research tools to provide relevant cellular model for human diseases, drug discovery and toxicity assays and for their in vivo use in regenerative medicine applications. In this review, we highlight recent progress, promises and challenges of hPSC applications in human neurological disease modelling and therapies.

  15. Modeling human disease using organotypic cultures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schweiger, Pawel J; Jensen, Kim B

    2016-01-01

    Reliable disease models are needed in order to improve quality of healthcare. This includes gaining better understanding of disease mechanisms, developing new therapeutic interventions and personalizing treatment. Up-to-date, the majority of our knowledge about disease states comes from in vivo...

  16. Cybersemiotics: Suggestion for a Transdisciplinary Framework Encompassing Natural, Life, and Social Sciences as Well as Phenomenology and Humanities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Søren Brier

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The modern evolutionary paradigm combined with phenomenology forces us to view human consciousness as a product of evolution as well as accepting humans as observers from “within the universe”. The knowledge produced by science has first-person embodied consciousness combined with second-person meaningful communication in language as a prerequisite for third-person fallibilist scientific knowledge. Therefore, the study of consciousness forces us theoretically to encompass the natural and social sciences as well as the humanities in one framework of unrestricted or absolute naturalism. This means to view conscious quale life world with its intentionality as well as the intersubjectivity of culture as a part of nature, and therefore the whole human being as treated in modern bio-medicine. The ‘bio’ is not enough. The crucial question for a transdisciplinary theory of conscious human being is therefore: What is the role of consciousness, signs, and meaning in evolution as well as in cultural development? But this is problematic since the sciences in their present form are without concepts of qualia and meaning, and the European phenomenological-hermeneutic “sciences of meaning” does not have an evolutionary foundation. It is therefore interesting that C.S. Peirce phaneroscopic semiotics - in its modern form of a biosemiotics - was based on a phenomenological basis as well as an evolutionary thinking and ecology of sign webs at the same time drawing on knowledge from the sciences. To develop this 100 year old paradigm it is necessary to supplement it with the knowledge gained from the technologically founded information sciences, as well as systems, and cybernetics in order to produce a transdisciplinary alternative to logical positivism on the one hand and postmodern constructivism on the other. Cybersemiotics constructs such a non-reductionist naturalistic framework in order to integrate third-person knowledge from the exact sciences

  17. Expression analyses of human cleft palate tissue suggest a role for osteopontin and immune related factors in palatal development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jakobsen, Linda P; Borup, Rehannah; Vestergaard, Janni

    2009-01-01

    Cleft lip and/or palate (CL/P) is a common congenital malformation with a complex etiology which is not fully elucidated yet. Epidemiological studies point to different etiologies in the cleft lip and palate subgroups, isolated cleft lip (CL), isolated cleft palate (CP) and combined cleft lip...... and palate (CLP). In order to understand the biological basis in these cleft lip and palate subgroups better we studied the expression profiles in human tissue from patients with CL/P. In each of the CL/P subgroups, samples were obtained from three patients and gene expression analysis was performed....... Moreover, selected differentially expressed genes were analyzed by quantitative RT-PCR, and by immunohistochemical staining of craniofacial tissue from human embryos. Osteopontin (SPP1) and other immune related genes were significantly higher expressed in palate tissue from patients with CLP compared to CP...

  18. Human genetics of infectious diseases: between proof of principle and paradigm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alcaïs, Alexandre; Abel, Laurent; Casanova, Jean-Laurent

    2009-01-01

    The observation that only a fraction of individuals infected by infectious agents develop clinical disease raises fundamental questions about the actual pathogenesis of infectious diseases. Epidemiological and experimental evidence is accumulating to suggest that human genetics plays a major role in this process. As we discuss here, human predisposition to infectious diseases seems to cover a continuous spectrum from monogenic to polygenic inheritance. Although many studies have provided proof of principle that infectious diseases may result from various types of inborn errors of immunity, the genetic determinism of most infectious diseases in most patients remains unclear. However, in the future, studies in human genetics are likely to establish a new paradigm for infectious diseases. PMID:19729848

  19. Suggestive evidence of a multi-cytokine resistin pathway in humans and its role on cardiovascular events in high-risk individuals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menzaghi, Claudia; Marucci, Antonella; Antonucci, Alessandra; De Bonis, Concetta; Ortega Moreno, Lorena; Salvemini, Lucia; Copetti, Massimiliano; Trischitta, Vincenzo; Di Paola, Rosa

    2017-01-01

    In cells and tissues resistin affects IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8, IL-12 and TNF-α expression, thus suggesting the existence of a multi-cytokine “resistin pathway”. We investigated whether such pathway does exist in humans and, if so, if it is associated with cardiovascular risk factors and with major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE). Serum cytokines were measured in 280 healthy subjects from the Gargano Study 2 (GS2) whose BMI, waist circumference, HOMAIR, triglycerides, HDL-cholesterol, systolic and diastolic blood pressure data were available and in 353 patients with type 2 diabetes and coronary artery disease from the Gargano Heart Study (GHS)-prospective design (follow-up 5.4 ± 2.5 years; 71 MACE). In GS2, cytokines mRNA levels in white blood cells were also measured. In GS2, resistin mRNA was correlated with all cytokines expression (all p eRPS) and serum (sRPS) resistin pathway scores (excluding IL-12) were each other correlated (p < 0.001) and both associated with cardiovascular risk factors (all p < 0.01). In GHS, sRPS was independently associated with MACE (HR = 1.44, 95% CI = 1.10–1.90). Our data indicate the existence of a resistin pathway, which is associated with cardiovascular risk factors and which strongly and independently predicts MACE. PMID:28290549

  20. Ionotropic GABA and Glutamate Receptor Mutations and Human Neurologic Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Hongjie; Low, Chian-Ming; Moody, Olivia A; Jenkins, Andrew; Traynelis, Stephen F

    2015-07-01

    The advent of whole exome/genome sequencing and the technology-driven reduction in the cost of next-generation sequencing as well as the introduction of diagnostic-targeted sequencing chips have resulted in an unprecedented volume of data directly linking patient genomic variability to disorders of the brain. This information has the potential to transform our understanding of neurologic disorders by improving diagnoses, illuminating the molecular heterogeneity underlying diseases, and identifying new targets for therapeutic treatment. There is a strong history of mutations in GABA receptor genes being involved in neurologic diseases, particularly the epilepsies. In addition, a substantial number of variants and mutations have been found in GABA receptor genes in patients with autism, schizophrenia, and addiction, suggesting potential links between the GABA receptors and these conditions. A new and unexpected outcome from sequencing efforts has been the surprising number of mutations found in glutamate receptor subunits, with the GRIN2A gene encoding the GluN2A N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor subunit being most often affected. These mutations are associated with multiple neurologic conditions, for which seizure disorders comprise the largest group. The GluN2A subunit appears to be a locus for epilepsy, which holds important therapeutic implications. Virtually all α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptor mutations, most of which occur within GRIA3, are from patients with intellectual disabilities, suggesting a link to this condition. Similarly, the most common phenotype for kainate receptor variants is intellectual disability. Herein, we summarize the current understanding of disease-associated mutations in ionotropic GABA and glutamate receptor families, and discuss implications regarding the identification of human mutations and treatment of neurologic diseases.

  1. Multinational corporations and infectious disease: Embracing human rights management techniques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salcito, Kendyl; Singer, Burton H; Weiss, Mitchell G; Winkler, Mirko S; Krieger, Gary R; Wielga, Mark; Utzinger, Jürg

    2014-01-01

    Global health institutions have called for governments, international organisations and health practitioners to employ a human rights-based approach to infectious diseases. The motivation for a human rights approach is clear: poverty and inequality create conditions for infectious diseases to thrive, and the diseases, in turn, interact with social-ecological systems to promulgate poverty, inequity and indignity. Governments and intergovernmental organisations should be concerned with the control and elimination of these diseases, as widespread infections delay economic growth and contribute to higher healthcare costs and slower processes for realising universal human rights. These social determinants and economic outcomes associated with infectious diseases should interest multinational companies, partly because they have bearing on corporate productivity and, increasingly, because new global norms impose on companies a responsibility to respect human rights, including the right to health. We reviewed historical and recent developments at the interface of infectious diseases, human rights and multinational corporations. Our investigation was supplemented with field-level insights at corporate capital projects that were developed in areas of high endemicity of infectious diseases, which embraced rights-based disease control strategies. Experience and literature provide a longstanding business case and an emerging social responsibility case for corporations to apply a human rights approach to health programmes at global operations. Indeed, in an increasingly globalised and interconnected world, multinational corporations have an interest, and an important role to play, in advancing rights-based control strategies for infectious diseases. There are new opportunities for governments and international health agencies to enlist corporate business actors in disease control and elimination strategies. Guidance offered by the United Nations in 2011 that is widely embraced

  2. Structural and Sequence Similarities of Hydra Xeroderma Pigmentosum A Protein to Human Homolog Suggest Early Evolution and Conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Apurva Barve

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Xeroderma pigmentosum group A (XPA is a protein that binds to damaged DNA, verifies presence of a lesion, and recruits other proteins of the nucleotide excision repair (NER pathway to the site. Though its homologs from yeast, Drosophila, humans, and so forth are well studied, XPA has not so far been reported from protozoa and lower animal phyla. Hydra is a fresh-water cnidarian with a remarkable capacity for regeneration and apparent lack of organismal ageing. Cnidarians are among the first metazoa with a defined body axis, tissue grade organisation, and nervous system. We report here for the first time presence of XPA gene in hydra. Putative protein sequence of hydra XPA contains nuclear localization signal and bears the zinc-finger motif. It contains two conserved Pfam domains and various characterized features of XPA proteins like regions for binding to excision repair cross-complementing protein-1 (ERCC1 and replication protein A 70 kDa subunit (RPA70 proteins. Hydra XPA shows a high degree of similarity with vertebrate homologs and clusters with deuterostomes in phylogenetic analysis. Homology modelling corroborates the very close similarity between hydra and human XPA. The protein thus most likely functions in hydra in the same manner as in other animals, indicating that it arose early in evolution and has been conserved across animal phyla.

  3. Extracellular RNAs: development as biomarkers of human disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph F. Quinn

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Ten ongoing studies designed to test the possibility that extracellular RNAs may serve as biomarkers in human disease are described. These studies, funded by the NIH Common Fund Extracellular RNA Communication Program, examine diverse extracellular body fluids, including plasma, serum, urine and cerebrospinal fluid. The disorders studied include hepatic and gastric cancer, cardiovascular disease, chronic kidney disease, neurodegenerative disease, brain tumours, intracranial haemorrhage, multiple sclerosis and placental disorders. Progress to date and the plans for future studies are outlined.

  4. Protein kinase CK2 in human diseases

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Guerra, Barbara; Issinger, Olaf-Georg

    2008-01-01

    in various disease processes including cancer has been gained in recent years, and the present review may help to further elucidate its aberrant role in many disease states. Its peculiar structural features [3-9] may be advantageous in designing tailor-made compounds with the possibility to specifically...

  5. Serum levels of human MIC-1/GDF15 vary in a diurnal pattern, do not display a profile suggestive of a satiety factor and are related to BMI

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tsai, Vicky Wang-Wei; Macia, Laurence; Feinle-Bisset, Christine;

    2015-01-01

    The TGF-b superfamily cytokine MIC-1/GDF15 circulates in the blood of healthy humans. Its levels rise substantially in cancer and other diseases and this may sometimes lead to development of an anorexia/cachexia syndrome. This is mediated by a direct action of MIC-1/GDF15 on feeding centres...

  6. Serum levels of human MIC-1/GDF15 vary in a diurnal pattern, do not display a profile suggestive of a satiety factor and are related to BMI

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tsai, Vicky Wang-Wei; Macia, Laurence; Feinle-Bisset, Christine

    2015-01-01

    The TGF-b superfamily cytokine MIC-1/GDF15 circulates in the blood of healthy humans. Its levels rise substantially in cancer and other diseases and this may sometimes lead to development of an anorexia/cachexia syndrome. This is mediated by a direct action of MIC-1/GDF15 on feeding centres in th...

  7. The genus Malassezia and human disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Inamadar A

    2003-07-01

    Full Text Available Sabouraud's Pityrosporum is now recognized as Malassezia. With taxonomic revision of the genus, newer species have been included. The role of this member of the normal human skin flora in different cutaneous and systemic disorders is becoming clearer. The immunological responses it induces in the human body are conflicting and their relevance to clinical features is yet to be explored.

  8. Statistical insights into major human muscular diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupta, Shakti; Kim, Sung-Min; Wang, Yu; Dinasarapu, Ashok Reddy; Subramaniam, Shankar

    2014-07-15

    Muscular diseases lead to muscle fiber degeneration, impairment of mobility, and in some cases premature death. Many of these muscular diseases are largely idiopathic. The goal of this study was to identify biomarkers based on their functional role and possible mechanisms of pathogenesis, specific to individual muscular disease. We analyzed the muscle transcriptome from five major muscular diseases: acute quadriplegic myopathy (AQM), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), mitochondrial encephalomyopathy, lactic acidosis and stroke-like episodes (MELAS), dermatomyositis (DM) and polymyositis (PM) using pairwise statistical comparison to identify uniquely regulated genes in each muscular disease. The genome-wide information encoded in the transcriptome provided biomarkers and functional insights into dysregulation in each muscular disease. The analysis showed that the dysregulation of genes in forward membrane pathway, responsible for transmitting action potential from neural excitation, is unique to AQM, while the dysregulation of myofibril genes, determinant of the mechanical properties of muscle, is unique to ALS, dysregulation of ER protein processing, responsible for correct protein folding, is unique to DM, and upregulation of immune response genes is unique to PM. We have identified biomarkers specific to each muscular disease which can be used for diagnostic purposes.

  9. The chromatin remodeller ATRX: a repeat offender in human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clynes, David; Higgs, Douglas R; Gibbons, Richard J

    2013-09-01

    The regulation of chromatin structure is of paramount importance for a variety of fundamental nuclear processes, including gene expression, DNA repair, replication, and recombination. The ATP-dependent chromatin-remodelling factor ATRX (α thalassaemia/mental retardation X-linked) has emerged as a key player in each of these processes. Exciting recent developments suggest that ATRX plays a variety of key roles at tandem repeat sequences within the genome, including the deposition of a histone variant, prevention of replication fork stalling, and the suppression of a homologous recombination-based pathway of telomere maintenance. Here, we provide a mechanistic overview of the role of ATRX in each of these processes, and propose how they may be connected to give rise to seemingly disparate human diseases.

  10. Metatranscriptomics of the human oral microbiome during health and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jorth, Peter; Turner, Keith H; Gumus, Pinar; Nizam, Nejat; Buduneli, Nurcan; Whiteley, Marvin

    2014-04-01

    The human microbiome plays important roles in health, but when disrupted, these same indigenous microbes can cause disease. The composition of the microbiome changes during the transition from health to disease; however, these changes are often not conserved among patients. Since microbiome-associated diseases like periodontitis cause similar patient symptoms despite interpatient variability in microbial community composition, we hypothesized that human-associated microbial communities undergo conserved changes in metabolism during disease. Here, we used patient-matched healthy and diseased samples to compare gene expression of 160,000 genes in healthy and diseased periodontal communities. We show that health- and disease-associated communities exhibit defined differences in metabolism that are conserved between patients. In contrast, the metabolic gene expression of individual species was highly variable between patients. These results demonstrate that despite high interpatient variability in microbial composition, disease-associated communities display conserved metabolic profiles that are generally accomplished by a patient-specific cohort of microbes. IMPORTANCE The human microbiome project has shown that shifts in our microbiota are associated with many diseases, including obesity, Crohn's disease, diabetes, and periodontitis. While changes in microbial populations are apparent during these diseases, the species associated with each disease can vary from patient to patient. Taking into account this interpatient variability, we hypothesized that specific microbiota-associated diseases would be marked by conserved microbial community behaviors. Here, we use gene expression analyses of patient-matched healthy and diseased human periodontal plaque to show that microbial communities have highly conserved metabolic gene expression profiles, whereas individual species within the community do not. Furthermore, disease-associated communities exhibit conserved changes

  11. Mapping of HPV transcripts in four human cervical lesions using RNAseq suggests quantitative rearrangements during carcinogenic progression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Jinmiao; Xue, Yuezhen; Poidinger, Michael; Lim, Thimothy; Chew, Sung Hock; Pang, Chai Ling; Abastado, Jean-Pierre; Thierry, Françoise

    2014-08-01

    Two classes of Human papillomaviruses (HPV) infect the anogenital track: high risk viruses that are associated with risk of cervical cancer and low risk types that drive development of benign lesions, such as condylomas. In the present study, we established quantitative transcriptional maps of the viral genome in clinical lesions associated with high risk HPV16 or low risk HPV6b. Marked qualitative and quantitative changes in the HPV16 transcriptome were associated with progression from low to high grade lesions. Specific transcripts encoding essential regulatory proteins such as E7, E2, E1^E4 and E5 were identified. We also identified intrinsic differences between the HPV6b-associated condyloma transcript map and that of the HPV16-associated low grade CIN specifically regarding promoter usage. Characterization and quantification of HPV transcripts in patient samples thus establish the impact of viral transcriptional regulation on the status of HPV-associated lesions and may therefore help in defining new biologically-relevant prognosis markers. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Modeling of the human rhinovirus C capsid suggests a novel topography with insights on receptor preference and immunogenicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basta, Holly A; Sgro, Jean-Yves; Palmenberg, Ann C

    2014-01-05

    Features of human rhinovirus (RV)-C virions that allow them to use novel cell receptors and evade immune responses are unknown. Unlike the RV-A+B, these isolates cannot be propagated in typical culture systems or grown for structure studies. Comparative sequencing, I-TASSER, MODELLER, ROBETTA, and refined alignment techniques led to a structural approximation for C15 virions, based on the extensive, resolved RV-A+B datasets. The model predicts that all RV-C VP1 proteins are shorter by 21 residues relative to the RV-A, and 35 residues relative to the RV-B, effectively shaving the RV 5-fold plateau from the particle. There are major alterations in VP1 neutralizing epitopes and the structural determinants for ICAM-1 and LDLR receptors. The VP2 and VP3 elements are similar among all RV, but the loss of sequence "words" contributing Nim1ab has increased the apparent selective pressure among the RV-C to fix mutations elsewhere in the VP1, creating a possible compensatory epitope.

  13. Locus heterogeneity disease genes encode proteins with high interconnectivity in the human protein interaction network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keith, Benjamin P; Robertson, David L; Hentges, Kathryn E

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in genes potentially lead to a number of genetic diseases with differing severity. These disease genes have been the focus of research in recent years showing that the disease gene population as a whole is not homogeneous, and can be categorized according to their interactions. Locus heterogeneity describes a single disorder caused by mutations in different genes each acting individually to cause the same disease. Using datasets of experimentally derived human disease genes and protein interactions, we created a protein interaction network to investigate the relationships between the products of genes associated with a disease displaying locus heterogeneity, and use network parameters to suggest properties that distinguish these disease genes from the overall disease gene population. Through the manual curation of known causative genes of 100 diseases displaying locus heterogeneity and 397 single-gene Mendelian disorders, we use network parameters to show that our locus heterogeneity network displays distinct properties from the global disease network and a Mendelian network. Using the global human proteome, through random simulation of the network we show that heterogeneous genes display significant interconnectivity. Further topological analysis of this network revealed clustering of locus heterogeneity genes that cause identical disorders, indicating that these disease genes are involved in similar biological processes. We then use this information to suggest additional genes that may contribute to diseases with locus heterogeneity.

  14. Mental stress and human cardiovascular disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esler, Murray

    2017-03-01

    The London physician and neuroanatomist Thomas Willis in the 17th century correctly attributed the source of emotions to the brain, not the heart as believed in antiquity. Contemporary research documents the phenomenon of "triggered" heart disease, when the autonomic nervous system control of the heart by the brain goes awry, producing heart disease of sudden onset, precipitated by acute emotional upheaval. This can take the form of, variously, cardiac arrhythmias, myocardial infarction, Takotsubo cardiomyopathy and sudden death. Chronic psychological distress also can have adverse cardiovascular consequences, in the causal linkage of depressive illness to heart disease, and in the probable causation of atherosclerosis and hypertension by chronic mental stress. In patients with essential hypertension, stress biomarkers are present. The sympathetic nervous system is the usual mediator between these acute and chronic psychological substrates and cardiovascular disease.

  15. Disease Human - MDC_CLRDMortality2006

    Data.gov (United States)

    NSGIC GIS Inventory (aka Ramona) — Polygon feature class based on Zip Code boundaries showing the rate of deaths per 100,000 residents due to Chronic Lower Respiratory Disease (CLRD) in Miami-Dade...

  16. "Miniguts" from plucked human hair meet Crohn's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hohwieler, M; Renz, S; Liebau, S; Lin, Q; Lechel, A; Klaus, J; Perkhofer, L; Zenke, M; Seufferlein, T; Illing, A; Müller, M; Kleger, A

    2016-08-01

    Human pluripotent stem cells represent a powerful tool to study human embryonic development and disease but also open up novel strategies for cell replacement therapies. Their capacity to give rise to every cell type of the human body, meanwhile, enables researchers to generate high yields of mesodermal, ectodermal, but also endodermal-derived tissues such as hepatic, pancreatic, or intestinal cells. Another progress in the field came with the advent of 3-dimensional culture conditions, so-called organoids, which facilitate maturation of stem cells and in turn more faithfully recapitulate human tissue architecture. While several studies reported the derivation of organoid cultures from adult intestinal tissue, the derivation of intestinal organoids derived from plucked human hair of Crohn's disease patients has not been reported. The current research project reports such successful generation and characterization of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) derived from hair sheet keratinocyte cultures of a patient with Crohn's disease. Stepwise differentiation along the intestinal lineage showed no differences in intermediate stages such as definitive endoderm formation. We also directed the patterned primitive gut tube toward intestinal organoids resembling the cellular architecture of human "miniguts". As expected from current pathophysiological knowledge on Crohn's disease, there were no obvious morphological differences in the "miniguts" derived from healthy control and diseased patient-induced pluripotent stem cells. Taken together, our platform will enable for detailed and complementary phenotyping of the pathophysiology of Crohn's disease in a novel disease-in-a-dish format.

  17. Differences in incidence and co-occurrence of vaccine and nonvaccine human papillomavirus types in Finnish population before human papillomavirus mass vaccination suggest competitive advantage for HPV33.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merikukka, Marko; Kaasila, Marjo; Namujju, Proscovia B; Palmroth, Johanna; Kirnbauer, Reinhard; Paavonen, Jorma; Surcel, Heljä-Marja; Lehtinen, Matti

    2011-03-01

    To understand likelihood of type replacement after vaccination against the high-risk human papillomavirus (HPV) types, we evaluated competition of the seven most common genital HPV types in a population sample of unvaccinated, fertile-aged Finnish women. First trimester sera from two consecutive pregnancies were retrieved from 3,183 Finnish women (mean age, 23.1 years) of whom 42.3% had antibodies to at least one HPV type (6/11/16/18/31/33/45) at the baseline. Antibody positivity to more than one HPV types by the second pregnancy was common among the baseline HPV seropositives. However, compared to baseline HPV-seronegative women, significantly increased incidence rate ratios (IRRs), indicating an increased risk to seroconvert for another HPV type, were consistently noted only for HPV33 among baseline HPV16 or HPV18 antibody (ab)-positive women: HPV(16ab only) (→) (16&33ab) IRR 2.9 [95% confidence interval (CI) 1.6-5.4] and HPV(18ab only) (→) (18&33ab) IRR 2.5 (95% CI 1.1-6.0), irrespectively of the presence of antibodies to other HPV types at baseline: HPV(16ab) (→) (16&33ab) IRR 3.2 (95% CI 2.0-5.2) and HPV(18ab) (→) (18&33ab) IRR 3.6 (95% CI 2.1-5.9). Our findings suggest a possible competitive advantage for HPV33 over other genital HPV types in the unvaccinated population. HPV33 should be monitored for type replacement after HPV mass vaccination. Copyright © 2010 UICC.

  18. Genomic responses in mouse models poorly mimic human inflammatory diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seok, Junhee; Warren, H Shaw; Cuenca, Alex G; Mindrinos, Michael N; Baker, Henry V; Xu, Weihong; Richards, Daniel R; McDonald-Smith, Grace P; Gao, Hong; Hennessy, Laura; Finnerty, Celeste C; López, Cecilia M; Honari, Shari; Moore, Ernest E; Minei, Joseph P; Cuschieri, Joseph; Bankey, Paul E; Johnson, Jeffrey L; Sperry, Jason; Nathens, Avery B; Billiar, Timothy R; West, Michael A; Jeschke, Marc G; Klein, Matthew B; Gamelli, Richard L; Gibran, Nicole S; Brownstein, Bernard H; Miller-Graziano, Carol; Calvano, Steve E; Mason, Philip H; Cobb, J Perren; Rahme, Laurence G; Lowry, Stephen F; Maier, Ronald V; Moldawer, Lyle L; Herndon, David N; Davis, Ronald W; Xiao, Wenzhong; Tompkins, Ronald G

    2013-02-26

    A cornerstone of modern biomedical research is the use of mouse models to explore basic pathophysiological mechanisms, evaluate new therapeutic approaches, and make go or no-go decisions to carry new drug candidates forward into clinical trials. Systematic studies evaluating how well murine models mimic human inflammatory diseases are nonexistent. Here, we show that, although acute inflammatory stresses from different etiologies result in highly similar genomic responses in humans, the responses in corresponding mouse models correlate poorly with the human conditions and also, one another. Among genes changed significantly in humans, the murine orthologs are close to random in matching their human counterparts (e.g., R(2) between 0.0 and 0.1). In addition to improvements in the current animal model systems, our study supports higher priority for translational medical research to focus on the more complex human conditions rather than relying on mouse models to study human inflammatory diseases.

  19. Genomic responses in mouse models poorly mimic human inflammatory diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seok, Junhee; Warren, H. Shaw; Cuenca, Alex G.; Mindrinos, Michael N.; Baker, Henry V.; Xu, Weihong; Richards, Daniel R.; McDonald-Smith, Grace P.; Gao, Hong; Hennessy, Laura; Finnerty, Celeste C.; López, Cecilia M.; Honari, Shari; Moore, Ernest E.; Minei, Joseph P.; Cuschieri, Joseph; Bankey, Paul E.; Johnson, Jeffrey L.; Sperry, Jason; Nathens, Avery B.; Billiar, Timothy R.; West, Michael A.; Jeschke, Marc G.; Klein, Matthew B.; Gamelli, Richard L.; Gibran, Nicole S.; Brownstein, Bernard H.; Miller-Graziano, Carol; Calvano, Steve E.; Mason, Philip H.; Cobb, J. Perren; Rahme, Laurence G.; Lowry, Stephen F.; Maier, Ronald V.; Moldawer, Lyle L.; Herndon, David N.; Davis, Ronald W.; Xiao, Wenzhong; Tompkins, Ronald G.; Abouhamze, Amer; Balis, Ulysses G. J.; Camp, David G.; De, Asit K.; Harbrecht, Brian G.; Hayden, Douglas L.; Kaushal, Amit; O’Keefe, Grant E.; Kotz, Kenneth T.; Qian, Weijun; Schoenfeld, David A.; Shapiro, Michael B.; Silver, Geoffrey M.; Smith, Richard D.; Storey, John D.; Tibshirani, Robert; Toner, Mehmet; Wilhelmy, Julie; Wispelwey, Bram; Wong, Wing H

    2013-01-01

    A cornerstone of modern biomedical research is the use of mouse models to explore basic pathophysiological mechanisms, evaluate new therapeutic approaches, and make go or no-go decisions to carry new drug candidates forward into clinical trials. Systematic studies evaluating how well murine models mimic human inflammatory diseases are nonexistent. Here, we show that, although acute inflammatory stresses from different etiologies result in highly similar genomic responses in humans, the responses in corresponding mouse models correlate poorly with the human conditions and also, one another. Among genes changed significantly in humans, the murine orthologs are close to random in matching their human counterparts (e.g., R2 between 0.0 and 0.1). In addition to improvements in the current animal model systems, our study supports higher priority for translational medical research to focus on the more complex human conditions rather than relying on mouse models to study human inflammatory diseases. PMID:23401516

  20. The implications of relationships between human diseases and metabolic subpathways.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xia Li

    Full Text Available One of the challenging problems in the etiology of diseases is to explore the relationships between initiation and progression of diseases and abnormalities in local regions of metabolic pathways. To gain insight into such relationships, we applied the "k-clique" subpathway identification method to all disease-related gene sets. For each disease, the disease risk regions of metabolic pathways were then identified and considered as subpathways associated with the disease. We finally built a disease-metabolic subpathway network (DMSPN. Through analyses based on network biology, we found that a few subpathways, such as that of cytochrome P450, were highly connected with many diseases, and most belonged to fundamental metabolisms, suggesting that abnormalities of fundamental metabolic processes tend to cause more types of diseases. According to the categories of diseases and subpathways, we tested the clustering phenomenon of diseases and metabolic subpathways in the DMSPN. The results showed that both disease nodes and subpathway nodes displayed slight clustering phenomenon. We also tested correlations between network topology and genes within disease-related metabolic subpathways, and found that within a disease-related subpathway in the DMSPN, the ratio of disease genes and the ratio of tissue-specific genes significantly increased as the number of diseases caused by the subpathway increased. Surprisingly, the ratio of essential genes significantly decreased and the ratio of housekeeping genes remained relatively unchanged. Furthermore, the coexpression levels between disease genes and other types of genes were calculated for each subpathway in the DMSPN. The results indicated that those genes intensely influenced by disease genes, including essential genes and tissue-specific genes, might be significantly associated with the disease diversity of subpathways, suggesting that different kinds of genes within a disease-related subpathway may play

  1. High Resolution Discovery Proteomics Reveals Candidate Disease Progression Markers of Alzheimer's Disease in Human Cerebrospinal Fluid.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ronald C Hendrickson

    Full Text Available Disease modifying treatments for Alzheimer's disease (AD constitute a major goal in medicine. Current trends suggest that biomarkers reflective of AD neuropathology and modifiable by treatment would provide supportive evidence for disease modification. Nevertheless, a lack of quantitative tools to assess disease modifying treatment effects remains a major hurdle. Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF biochemical markers such as total tau, p-tau and Ab42 are well established markers of AD; however, global quantitative biochemical changes in CSF in AD disease progression remain largely uncharacterized. Here we applied a high resolution open discovery platform, dMS, to profile a cross-sectional cohort of lumbar CSF from post-mortem diagnosed AD patients versus those from non-AD/non-demented (control patients. Multiple markers were identified to be statistically significant in the cohort tested. We selected two markers SME-1 (p<0.0001 and SME-2 (p = 0.0004 for evaluation in a second independent longitudinal cohort of human CSF from post-mortem diagnosed AD patients and age-matched and case-matched control patients. In cohort-2, SME-1, identified as neuronal secretory protein VGF, and SME-2, identified as neuronal pentraxin receptor-1 (NPTXR, in AD were 21% (p = 0.039 and 17% (p = 0.026 lower, at baseline, respectively, than in controls. Linear mixed model analysis in the longitudinal cohort estimate a decrease in the levels of VGF and NPTXR at the rate of 10.9% and 6.9% per year in the AD patients, whereas both markers increased in controls. Because these markers are detected by mass spectrometry without the need for antibody reagents, targeted MS based assays provide a clear translation path for evaluating selected AD disease-progression markers with high analytical precision in the clinic.

  2. Human papillomavirus infection and disease in men: Impact of HIV ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Human papillomavirus infection and disease in men: Impact of HIV. ... Journal Home > Vol 14, No 4 (2013) > ... HIV infection increases HPV prevalence, incidence and persistence and is strongly associated with the development of anogenital ...

  3. Human copy number variation and complex genetic disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girirajan, Santhosh; Campbell, Catarina D; Eichler, Evan E

    2011-01-01

    Copy number variants (CNVs) play an important role in human disease and population diversity. Advancements in technology have allowed for the analysis of CNVs in thousands of individuals with disease in addition to thousands of controls. These studies have identified rare CNVs associated with neuropsychiatric diseases such as autism, schizophrenia, and intellectual disability. In addition, copy number polymorphisms (CNPs) are present at higher frequencies in the population, show high diversity in copy number, sequence, and structure, and have been associated with multiple phenotypes, primarily related to immune or environmental response. However, the landscape of copy number variation still remains largely unexplored, especially for smaller CNVs and those embedded within complex regions of the human genome. An integrated approach including characterization of single nucleotide variants and CNVs in a large number of individuals with disease and normal genomes holds the promise of thoroughly elucidating the genetic basis of human disease and diversity.

  4. The human microbiome in rheumatic autoimmune diseases: A comprehensive review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coit, Patrick; Sawalha, Amr H

    2016-09-01

    The human microbiome consists of the total diversity of microbiota and their genes. High-throughput sequencing has allowed for inexpensive and rapid evaluation of taxonomic representation and functional capability of the microbiomes of human body sites. Autoimmune and inflammatory rheumatic diseases are characterized by dysbiosis of the microbiome. Microbiome dysbiosis can be influenced by host genetics and environmental factors. Dysbiosis is also associated with shifts in certain functional pathways. The goal of this article is to provide a current and comprehensive review of the unique characteristics of the microbiome of patients with autoimmune and inflammatory rheumatic diseases, measured using high-throughput sequencing. We also highlight the need for broader studies utilizing a longitudinal approach to better understand how the human microbiome contributes to disease susceptibility, and to characterize the role of the interaction between host genetics and microbial diversity in the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases, disease manifestations, and progression.

  5. Discoidin Domain Receptors Role in Human Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iker BADIOLA

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Discoidin Domain Receptor 1 and Discodin Domain Receptor 2 are the two only members of the DDR family. The DDR family is a Tyrosine Kinase Receptor (TKR family with some peculiarities compared with other Tyrosine Kinase Receptors such as their natural ligand; which in this case is the fibrillar collagen; or the slow phosphorylation pattern. These peculiarities confer a special role to the receptors present in many diseases development processes as cancer, cirrhosis or lung fibrosis. In this review it is described the overview of the DDRs structure and their role in the different disease development and the possibility to consider them as therapeutic targets.

  6. Protein kinase CK2 in human diseases

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Guerra, Barbara; Issinger, Olaf-Georg

    2008-01-01

    in various disease processes including cancer has been gained in recent years, and the present review may help to further elucidate its aberrant role in many disease states. Its peculiar structural features [3-9] may be advantageous in designing tailor-made compounds with the possibility to specifically...... target this protein kinase [10]. Since not all the aspects of what has been published on CK2 can be covered in this review, we would like to recommend the following reviews; (i) for general information on CK2 [11-18] and (ii) with a focus on aberrant CK2 [19-22]....

  7. Polymorphisms of the Toll-like receptors and human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartz, David A; Cook, Donald N

    2005-11-15

    The Toll-like receptor (TLR) family regulates both innate and adaptive immune responses. Given its broad effect on immunity, the function of TLRs in various human diseases has been investigated largely by comparing the incidence of disease among persons with different polymorphisms in the genes that participate in TLR signaling. These studies demonstrate that TLR function affects several diseases, including sepsis, immunodeficiencies, atherosclerosis, and asthma. These findings have resulted in new opportunities to study the pathogenesis of disease, identify subpopulations at greater risk of disease, and, potentially, identify novel therapeutic approaches.

  8. Immunoregulatory networks in human Chagas disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dutra, Walderez O.; Menezes, Cristiane A.S.; Magalhães, Luisa M. D.; Gollob, Kenneth J.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Chagas disease, caused by the infection with Trypanosoma cruzi, is endemic in all Latin America. Due to the increase in population migration, Chagas disease has spread worldwide and is now considered a health issue not only in endemic countries. While most chronically infected individuals remain asymptomatic, approximately 30% of the patients develop a potentially deadly cardiomyopathy. The exact mechanisms that underlie the establishment and maintenance of the cardiac pathology are not clear. However, there is consistent evidence that immunoregulatory cytokines are critical for orchestrating the immune response and, thus, influence disease development or control. While the asymptomatic (indeterminate) form represents a state of balance between the host and the parasite, the establishment of the cardiac form represents the loss of this balance. Analysis of data obtained from several studies have led to the hypothesis that the indeterminate form is associated with an anti-inflammatory cytokine profile, represented by high expression of IL-10, while cardiac form is associated with a high production of IFN-gamma and TNF-alpha in relation to IL-10, leading to an inflammatory profile. Here, we discuss the immunoregulatory events that might influence disease outcome, as well as the mechanisms that influence the establishment of these complex immunoregulatory networks. PMID:24611805

  9. Cognitive impairment in human chronic Chagas' disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C.A. Mangone

    1994-06-01

    Full Text Available We proposed to investigate subclinical cognitive impairment secondary to chronic Chagas' disease (CCD. No similar study was previously done. The neuropsychological performance of 45 chronic Chagasic patients and 26 matched controls (age, education place and years of residency in endemic area was compared using the Mini Mental State Exam (MMSE, Weschler Memory Scale (WMS and the Weschler Adult Intelligent Scale (WAIS. Non-parametric tests and Chi2 were used to compare group means and multivariate statistics in two way frequency tables for measures of independence and association of categorical variables with the disease. Results: Chagasic patients showed lower MMSE scores (p<004, poor orientation (p<.004, and attention (p<.007. Lower WMS MQ were associated with CCD (Chi2 5.9; p<.01; Fisher test p<.02. Lower WAIS IQ were associated with CCD (Chi2 6.3, p<.01; Fisher test p<.01 being the digit symbol (p<.03, picture completion (p<.03, picture arrangement (p<.01 and object assembly (p<.03 subtests the most affected. The impairment in non-verbal reasoning, speed of information processing, problem solving, learning and sequencing observed in chronic Chagas disease patients resembles the cognitive dysfunction associated with white matter disease.

  10. The DNA-damage response in human biology and disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jackson, Stephen P; Bartek, Jiri

    2009-01-01

    , signal its presence and mediate its repair. Such responses, which have an impact on a wide range of cellular events, are biologically significant because they prevent diverse human diseases. Our improving understanding of DNA-damage responses is providing new avenues for disease management....

  11. Skin Diseases: Cross-section of human skin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skip Navigation Bar Home Current Issue Past Issues Skin Diseases Cross-section of human skin Past Issues / Fall 2008 Table of Contents For ... Logical Images, Inc. I n the areas of skin health and skin diseases, the NIH's National Institute ...

  12. Genetics and epigenetics of repeat derepression in human disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Thijssen, P.E.

    2016-01-01

    A large part of the human genome consists of repetitive DNA. In this thesis two human diseases have been studied in which deregulation of repetitive DNA is a central feature: facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy (FSHD) and immunodeficiency, centromere instability and facial anomalies (ICF) syndrom

  13. Demodex species in human ocular disease: new clinicopathological aspects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicholls, Stephen G; Oakley, Carmen L; Tan, Andrea; Vote, Brendan J

    2017-02-01

    Demodex brevis and Demodex folliculorum are likely ubiquitous organisms associated with human eyelashes. However, they have also been implicated in the pathogenesis of external ocular diseases. This article reviews the current literature in regards to life cycle, morphology, pathogenesis and treatment of underlying Demodex spp. infestation and outlines the previously undescribed in vivo behaviour of the mites. Images were obtained from the epilation of lashes from 404 patients seen in clinical practice. Epilated lashes were placed on a microscope slide which had been coated with optically clear hypromellose/carbomer gel (Genteal gel, Novartis pharmaceuticals corporation, East Hanover, New Jersey). Adults were identified with either dark field or standard transmission microscopy at 40-100×. Eggs and other life-cycle stages were examined at 250× magnification, with transmission microscopy giving the best image resolution. The life cycle of the mite has been reviewed and simplified according to clinical observations. Clinical signs suggestive of underlying Demodex spp. infestation have been described, and their pathogenesis was explained based on the micrographic digital images obtained. The problem of symptomatic Demodex spp. disease likely reflects an imbalance in the external ocular ecology; however, the role of Demodex spp. as a commensal should not be overlooked. Treatment should not be aimed at total eradication of the mite but rather restoring the ocular ecology to a balanced state. By revisiting the life cycle of the mite, we can identify areas where possible intervention may be effective.

  14. Unique human immune signature of Ebola virus disease in Guinea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruibal, Paula; Oestereich, Lisa; Lüdtke, Anja; Becker-Ziaja, Beate; Wozniak, David M; Kerber, Romy; Korva, Miša; Cabeza-Cabrerizo, Mar; Bore, Joseph A; Koundouno, Fara Raymond; Duraffour, Sophie; Weller, Romy; Thorenz, Anja; Cimini, Eleonora; Viola, Domenico; Agrati, Chiara; Repits, Johanna; Afrough, Babak; Cowley, Lauren A; Ngabo, Didier; Hinzmann, Julia; Mertens, Marc; Vitoriano, Inês; Logue, Christopher H; Boettcher, Jan Peter; Pallasch, Elisa; Sachse, Andreas; Bah, Amadou; Nitzsche, Katja; Kuisma, Eeva; Michel, Janine; Holm, Tobias; Zekeng, Elsa-Gayle; García-Dorival, Isabel; Wölfel, Roman; Stoecker, Kilian; Fleischmann, Erna; Strecker, Thomas; Di Caro, Antonino; Avšič-Županc, Tatjana; Kurth, Andreas; Meschi, Silvia; Mély, Stephane; Newman, Edmund; Bocquin, Anne; Kis, Zoltan; Kelterbaum, Anne; Molkenthin, Peter; Carletti, Fabrizio; Portmann, Jasmine; Wolff, Svenja; Castilletti, Concetta; Schudt, Gordian; Fizet, Alexandra; Ottowell, Lisa J; Herker, Eva; Jacobs, Thomas; Kretschmer, Birte; Severi, Ettore; Ouedraogo, Nobila; Lago, Mar; Negredo, Anabel; Franco, Leticia; Anda, Pedro; Schmiedel, Stefan; Kreuels, Benno; Wichmann, Dominic; Addo, Marylyn M; Lohse, Ansgar W; De Clerck, Hilde; Nanclares, Carolina; Jonckheere, Sylvie; Van Herp, Michel; Sprecher, Armand; Xiaojiang, Gao; Carrington, Mary; Miranda, Osvaldo; Castro, Carlos M; Gabriel, Martin; Drury, Patrick; Formenty, Pierre; Diallo, Boubacar; Koivogui, Lamine; Magassouba, N'Faly; Carroll, Miles W; Günther, Stephan; Muñoz-Fontela, César

    2016-05-01

    Despite the magnitude of the Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak in West Africa, there is still a fundamental lack of knowledge about the pathophysiology of EVD. In particular, very little is known about human immune responses to Ebola virus. Here we evaluate the physiology of the human T cell immune response in EVD patients at the time of admission to the Ebola Treatment Center in Guinea, and longitudinally until discharge or death. Through the use of multiparametric flow cytometry established by the European Mobile Laboratory in the field, we identify an immune signature that is unique in EVD fatalities. Fatal EVD was characterized by a high percentage of CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells expressing the inhibitory molecules CTLA-4 and PD-1, which correlated with elevated inflammatory markers and high virus load. Conversely, surviving individuals showed significantly lower expression of CTLA-4 and PD-1 as well as lower inflammation, despite comparable overall T cell activation. Concomitant with virus clearance, survivors mounted a robust Ebola-virus-specific T cell response. Our findings suggest that dysregulation of the T cell response is a key component of EVD pathophysiology.

  15. Impacts of Gut Bacteria on Human Health and Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu-Jie Zhang

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Gut bacteria are an important component of the microbiota ecosystem in the human gut, which is colonized by 1014 microbes, ten times more than the human cells. Gut bacteria play an important role in human health, such as supplying essential nutrients, synthesizing vitamin K, aiding in the digestion of cellulose, and promoting angiogenesis and enteric nerve function. However, they can also be potentially harmful due to the change of their composition when the gut ecosystem undergoes abnormal changes in the light of the use of antibiotics, illness, stress, aging, bad dietary habits, and lifestyle. Dysbiosis of the gut bacteria communities can cause many chronic diseases, such as inflammatory bowel disease, obesity, cancer, and autism. This review summarizes and discusses the roles and potential mechanisms of gut bacteria in human health and diseases.

  16. Connexin mutant embryonic stem cells and human diseases

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Kiyomasa; Nishii; Yosaburo; Shibata; Yasushi; Kobayashi

    2014-01-01

    Intercellular communication via gap junctions allows cells within multicellular organisms to share small molecules. The effect of such interactions has been elucidated using mouse gene knockout strategies. Although several mutations in human gap junction-encoding connexin(Cx) have been described, Cx mutants in mice do not always recapitulate the human disease. Among the 20 mouse Cxs, Cx26, Cx43, and Cx45 play roles in early cardiac or placental development, and disruption of the genes results in lethality that hampers further analyses. Embryonic stem cells(ESCs) that lack Cx43 or Cx45 have made analysis feasible in both in vitro differentiated cell cultures and in vivo chimeric tissues. The success of mouse ESCs studies is leading to the use of induced pluripotent stem cells to learn more about the pathogenesis of human Cx diseases. This review summarizes the current status of mouse Cx disruption models and ESC differentiation studies, and discusses their implication for understanding human Cx diseases.

  17. Human Microbiome and its Association With Health and Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Althani, Asmaa A; Marei, Hany E; Hamdi, Wedad S; Nasrallah, Gheyath K; El Zowalaty, Mohamed E; Al Khodor, Souhaila; Al-Asmakh, Maha; Abdel-Aziz, Hassan; Cenciarelli, Carlo

    2016-08-01

    Human microbiota are distinct communities of microorganisms that resides at different body niches. Exploration of the human microbiome has become a reality due to the availability of powerful metagenomics and metatranscriptomic analysis technologies. Recent advances in sequencing and bioinformatics over the past decade help provide a deep insight into the nature of the host-microbial interactions and identification of potential deriver genes and pathways associated with human health, well-being, and predisposition to different diseases. In the present review, we outline recent studies devoted to elucidate the possible link between the microbiota and various type of diseases. The present review also highlights the potential utilization of microbiota as a potential therapeutic option to treat a wide array of human diseases. J. Cell. Physiol. 231: 1688-1694, 2016. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Connexin mutant embryonic stem cells and human diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishii, Kiyomasa; Shibata, Yosaburo; Kobayashi, Yasushi

    2014-11-26

    Intercellular communication via gap junctions allows cells within multicellular organisms to share small molecules. The effect of such interactions has been elucidated using mouse gene knockout strategies. Although several mutations in human gap junction-encoding connexin (Cx) have been described, Cx mutants in mice do not always recapitulate the human disease. Among the 20 mouse Cxs, Cx26, Cx43, and Cx45 play roles in early cardiac or placental development, and disruption of the genes results in lethality that hampers further analyses. Embryonic stem cells (ESCs) that lack Cx43 or Cx45 have made analysis feasible in both in vitro differentiated cell cultures and in vivo chimeric tissues. The success of mouse ESCs studies is leading to the use of induced pluripotent stem cells to learn more about the pathogenesis of human Cx diseases. This review summarizes the current status of mouse Cx disruption models and ESC differentiation studies, and discusses their implication for understanding human Cx diseases.

  19. Natural selection on genes that underlie human disease susceptibility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blekhman, Ran; Man, Orna; Herrmann, Leslie; Boyko, Adam R.; Indap, Amit; Kosiol, Carolin; Bustamante, Carlos D.; Teshima, Kosuke M.; Przeworski, Molly

    2008-01-01

    What evolutionary forces shape genes that contribute to the risk of human disease? Do similar selective pressures act on alleles that underlie simple vs. complex disorders? [1-3]. Answers to these questions will shed light on the origin of human disorders (e.g., [4]), and help to predict the population frequencies of alleles that contribute to disease risk, with important implications for the efficient design of mapping studies [5-7]. As a first step towards addressing them, we created a hand-curated version of the Mendelian Inheritance in Man database (OMIM). We then examined selective pressures on Mendelian disease genes, genes that contribute to complex disease risk and genes known to be essential in mouse, by analyzing patterns of human polymorphism and of divergence between human and rhesus macaque. We find that Mendelian disease genes appear to be under widespread purifying selection, especially when the disease mutations are dominant (rather than recessive). In contrast, the class of genes that influence complex disease risk shows little signs of evolutionary conservation, possibly because this category includes both targets of purifying and positive selection. PMID:18571414

  20. Integrated Genomic and Network-Based Analyses of Complex Diseases and Human Disease Network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Harazi, Olfat; Al Insaif, Sadiq; Al-Ajlan, Monirah A; Kaya, Namik; Dzimiri, Nduna; Colak, Dilek

    2016-06-20

    A disease phenotype generally reflects various pathobiological processes that interact in a complex network. The highly interconnected nature of the human protein interaction network (interactome) indicates that, at the molecular level, it is difficult to consider diseases as being independent of one another. Recently, genome-wide molecular measurements, data mining and bioinformatics approaches have provided the means to explore human diseases from a molecular basis. The exploration of diseases and a system of disease relationships based on the integration of genome-wide molecular data with the human interactome could offer a powerful perspective for understanding the molecular architecture of diseases. Recently, subnetwork markers have proven to be more robust and reliable than individual biomarker genes selected based on gene expression profiles alone, and achieve higher accuracy in disease classification. We have applied one of these methodologies to idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (IDCM) data that we have generated using a microarray and identified significant subnetworks associated with the disease. In this paper, we review the recent endeavours in this direction, and summarize the existing methodologies and computational tools for network-based analysis of complex diseases and molecular relationships among apparently different disorders and human disease network. We also discuss the future research trends and topics of this promising field.

  1. Familial Alzheimer's disease: genetic analysis related to disease heterogeneity, Down syndrome and human brain evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schapiro, M B; Rapoport, S I

    1989-01-01

    Etiologically heterogeneous subgroups of patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) exist and need to be distinguished so as to better identify genetic causes of familial cases. Furthermore, the presence of AD neuropathology in Down syndrome (trisomy 21) subjects older than 35 years suggests that AD in some cases is caused by dysregulation of expression of genes on chromosome 21. Cerebral metabolic abnormalities in life, and the distribution of AD neuropathology in the post-mortem brain, indicate that AD involves the association neocortices and subcortical regions with which they evolved during evolution of the human brain. Accordingly, understanding the molecular basis of this evolution should elucidate the genetic basis of AD, whereas knowing the genetics of AD should be informative about the genomic changes which promoted brain evolution.

  2. Long Non-Coding RNAs and Complex Human Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Changning Liu

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs are a heterogeneous class of RNAs that are generally defined as non-protein-coding transcripts longer than 200 nucleotides. Recently, an increasing number of studies have shown that lncRNAs can be involved in various critical biological processes, such as chromatin remodeling, gene transcription, and protein transport and trafficking. Moreover, lncRNAs are dysregulated in a number of complex human diseases, including coronary artery diseases, autoimmune diseases, neurological disorders, and various cancers, which indicates their important roles in these diseases. Here, we reviewed the current understanding of lncRNAs, including their definition and subclassification, regulatory functions, and potential roles in different types of complex human diseases.

  3. Are human endogenous retroviruses triggers of autoimmune diseases?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nexø, Bjørn A; Villesen, Palle; Nissen, Kari K

    2016-01-01

    Autoimmune diseases encompass a plethora of conditions in which the immune system attacks its own tissue, identifying them as foreign. Multiple factors are thought to contribute to the development of immune response to self, including differences in genotypes, hormonal milieu, and environmental...... manner. In this study by means of genetic epidemiology, we have searched for the involvement of endogenous retroviruses in three selected autoimmune diseases: multiple sclerosis, type 1 diabetes mellitus, and rheumatoid arthritis. We found that at least one human endogenous retroviral locus...... was associated with each of the three diseases. Although there was a significant overlap, most loci only occurred in one of the studied disease. Remarkably, within each disease, there was a statistical interaction (synergy) between two loci. Additional synergy between retroviral loci and human lymphocyte...

  4. Cross-pollination of research findings, although uncommon, may accelerate discovery of human disease genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Duda Marlena

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Technological leaps in genome sequencing have resulted in a surge in discovery of human disease genes. These discoveries have led to increased clarity on the molecular pathology of disease and have also demonstrated considerable overlap in the genetic roots of human diseases. In light of this large genetic overlap, we tested whether cross-disease research approaches lead to faster, more impactful discoveries. Methods We leveraged several gene-disease association databases to calculate a Mutual Citation Score (MCS for 10,853 pairs of genetically related diseases to measure the frequency of cross-citation between research fields. To assess the importance of cooperative research, we computed an Individual Disease Cooperation Score (ICS and the average publication rate for each disease. Results For all disease pairs with one gene in common, we found that the degree of genetic overlap was a poor predictor of cooperation (r2=0.3198 and that the vast majority of disease pairs (89.56% never cited previous discoveries of the same gene in a different disease, irrespective of the level of genetic similarity between the diseases. A fraction (0.25% of the pairs demonstrated cross-citation in greater than 5% of their published genetic discoveries and 0.037% cross-referenced discoveries more than 10% of the time. We found strong positive correlations between ICS and publication rate (r2=0.7931, and an even stronger correlation between the publication rate and the number of cross-referenced diseases (r2=0.8585. These results suggested that cross-disease research may have the potential to yield novel discoveries at a faster pace than singular disease research. Conclusions Our findings suggest that the frequency of cross-disease study is low despite the high level of genetic similarity among many human diseases, and that collaborative methods may accelerate and increase the impact of new genetic discoveries. Until we have a better

  5. The Leeuwenhoek Lecture 2001. Animal origins of human infectious disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiss, R A

    2001-06-29

    Since time immemorial animals have been a major source of human infectious disease. Certain infections like rabies are recognized as zoonoses caused in each case by direct animal-to-human transmission. Others like measles became independently sustained with the human population so that the causative virus has diverged from its animal progenitor. Recent examples of direct zoonoses are variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease arising from bovine spongiform encephalopathy, and the H5N1 avian influenza outbreak in Hong Kong. Epidemics of recent animal origin are the 1918-1919 influenza pandemic, and acquired immune deficiency syndrome caused by human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Some retroviruses jump into and out of the chromosomal DNA of the host germline, so that they oscillate between being inherited Mendelian traits or infectious agents in different species. Will new procedures like animal-to-human transplants unleash further infections? Do microbes become more virulent upon cross-species transfer? Are animal microbes a threat as biological weapons? Will the vast reservoir of immunodeficient hosts due to the HIV pandemic provide conditions permissive for sporadic zoonoses to take off as human-to-human transmissible diseases? Do human infections now pose a threat to endangered primates? These questions are addressed in this lecture.

  6. Comparative studies of placentation and immunology in non-human primates suggest a scenario for the evolution of deep trophoblast invasion and an explanation for human pregnancy disorders

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carter, Anthony Michael

    2011-01-01

    Deep trophoblast invasion in the placental bed has been considered the hallmark of human pregnancy. It occurs by two routes, interstitial and endovascular, and results in transformation of the walls of the spiral arteries as they traverse the decidua and the inner third of the myometrium. Disturb...

  7. Interneurons in the human olfactory system in Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saiz-Sanchez, Daniel; Flores-Cuadrado, Alicia; Ubeda-Bañon, Isabel; de la Rosa-Prieto, Carlos; Martinez-Marcos, Alino

    2016-02-01

    The principal olfactory structures display Alzheimer's disease (AD) related pathology at early stages of the disease. Consequently, olfactory deficits are among the earliest symptoms. Reliable olfactory tests for accurate clinical diagnosis are rarely made. In addition, neuropathological analysis postmortem of olfactory structures is often not made. Therefore, the relationship between the clinical features and the underlying pathology is poorly defined. Traditionally, research into Alzheimer's disease has focused on the degeneration of cortical temporal projection neurons and cholinergic neurons. Recent evidence has demonstrated the neurodegeneration of interneuron populations in AD. This review provides an updated overview of the pathological involvement of interneuron populations in the human olfactory system in Alzheimer's disease.

  8. Part 1: The Human Gut Microbiome in Health and Disease

    OpenAIRE

    Bull, Matthew J.; Plummer, Nigel T.

    2014-01-01

    The bacterial cells harbored within the human gastrointestinal tract (GIT) outnumber the host’s cells by a factor of 10 and the genes encoded by the bacteria resident within the GIT outnumber their host’s genes by more than 100 times. These human digestive-tract associated microbes are referred to as the gut microbiome. The human gut microbiome and its role in both health and disease has been the subject of extensive research, establishing its involvement in human metabolism, nutrition, physi...

  9. FISH CONSUMPTION, METHYLMERCURY, AND HUMAN HEART DISEASE.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    LIPFERT, F.W.; SULLIVAN, T.M.

    2005-09-21

    Environmental mercury continues to be of concern to public health advocates, both in the U.S. and abroad, and new research continues to be published. A recent analysis of potential health benefits of reduced mercury emissions has opened a new area of public health concern: adverse effects on the cardiovascular system, which could account for the bulk of the potential economic benefits. The authors were careful to include caveats about the uncertainties of such impacts, but they cited only a fraction of the applicable health effects literature. That literature includes studies of the potentially harmful ingredient (methylmercury, MeHg) in fish, as well as of a beneficial ingredient, omega-3 fatty acids or ''fish oils''. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently certified that some of these fat compounds that are primarily found in fish ''may be beneficial in reducing coronary heart disease''. This paper briefly summarizes and categorizes the extensive literature on both adverse and beneficial links between fish consumption and cardiovascular health, which are typically based on studies of selected groups of individuals (cohorts). Such studies tend to comprise the ''gold standard'' of epidemiology, but cohorts tend to exhibit a great deal of variability, in part because of the limited numbers of individuals involved and in part because of interactions with other dietary and lifestyle considerations. Note that eating fish will involve exposure to both the beneficial effects of fatty acids and the potentially harmful effects of contaminants like Hg or PCBs, all of which depend on the type of fish but tend to be correlated within a population. As a group, the cohort studies show that eating fish tends to reduce mortality, especially due to heart disease, for consumption rates up to about twice weekly, above which the benefits tend to level off. A Finnish cohort study showed increased mortality risks

  10. Research priorities for Chagas disease, human African trypanosomiasis and leishmaniasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    This report provides a review and analysis of the research landscape for three diseases - Chagas disease, human African trypanosomiasis and leishmaniasis - that disproportionately afflict poor and remote populations with limited access to health services. It represents the work of the disease reference group on Chagas Disease, Human African Trypanosomiasis and Leishmaniasis (DRG3) which was established to identify key research priorities through review of research evidence and input from stakeholders' consultations. The diseases, which are caused by related protozoan parasites, are described in terms of their epidemiology and diseases burden, clinical forms and pathogenesis, HIV coinfection, diagnosis, drugs and drug resistance, vaccines, vector control, and health-care interventions. Priority areas for research are identified based on criteria such as public health relevance, benefit and impact on poor populations and equity, and feasibility. The priorities are found in the areas of diagnostics, drugs, vector control, asymptomatic infection, economic analysis of treatment and vector control methods, and in some specific issues such as surveillance methods or transmission-blocking vaccines for particular diseases. This report will be useful to researchers, policy and decision-makers, funding bodies, implementation organizations, and civil society. This is one of ten disease and thematic reference group reports that have come out of the TDR Think Tank, all of which have contributed to the development of the Global Report for Research on Infectious Diseases of Poverty, available at: www.who.int/tdr/stewardship/global_report/en/index.html.

  11. Analysis of the human diseasome using phenotype similarity between common, genetic, and infectious diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoehndorf, Robert; Schofield, Paul N.; Gkoutos, Georgios V.

    2015-06-01

    Phenotypes are the observable characteristics of an organism arising from its response to the environment. Phenotypes associated with engineered and natural genetic variation are widely recorded using phenotype ontologies in model organisms, as are signs and symptoms of human Mendelian diseases in databases such as OMIM and Orphanet. Exploiting these resources, several computational methods have been developed for integration and analysis of phenotype data to identify the genetic etiology of diseases or suggest plausible interventions. A similar resource would be highly useful not only for rare and Mendelian diseases, but also for common, complex and infectious diseases. We apply a semantic text-mining approach to identify the phenotypes (signs and symptoms) associated with over 6,000 diseases. We evaluate our text-mined phenotypes by demonstrating that they can correctly identify known disease-associated genes in mice and humans with high accuracy. Using a phenotypic similarity measure, we generate a human disease network in which diseases that have similar signs and symptoms cluster together, and we use this network to identify closely related diseases based on common etiological, anatomical as well as physiological underpinnings.

  12. Analysis of the human diseasome using phenotype similarity between common, genetic, and infectious diseases

    KAUST Repository

    Hoehndorf, Robert

    2015-06-08

    Phenotypes are the observable characteristics of an organism arising from its response to the environment. Phenotypes associated with engineered and natural genetic variation are widely recorded using phenotype ontologies in model organisms, as are signs and symptoms of human Mendelian diseases in databases such as OMIM and Orphanet. Exploiting these resources, several computational methods have been developed for integration and analysis of phenotype data to identify the genetic etiology of diseases or suggest plausible interventions. A similar resource would be highly useful not only for rare and Mendelian diseases, but also for common, complex and infectious diseases. We apply a semantic text-mining approach to identify the phenotypes (signs and symptoms) associated with over 6,000 diseases. We evaluate our text-mined phenotypes by demonstrating that they can correctly identify known disease-associated genes in mice and humans with high accuracy. Using a phenotypic similarity measure, we generate a human disease network in which diseases that have similar signs and symptoms cluster together, and we use this network to identify closely related diseases based on common etiological, anatomical as well as physiological underpinnings.

  13. [Two cases of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) that developed in cryptogenic cirrhosis suggestive of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) as background liver disease after clinical courses of 26 years].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsutsumi, Koichiro; Nakayama, Haruo; Sakai, Yoshitaka; Kojima, Yasuhiro; Dairaku, Naohiro; Ojima, Toshiaki; Kusano, Masao; Ikeya, Shinichi; Sugai, Yoshiki; Hiwatashi, Nobuo

    2007-05-01

    We report two cases of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) that developed in cryptogenic cirrhosis suggestive of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) as background liver disease. Case 1 was a 68-year-old woman, and case 2 was a 46-year-old man. They were admitted to our department for evaluation and treatment of HCC. The causes of the underlying liver disease were not determined from blood tests. However, histological analysis of non-tumor tissues of the liver revealed cirrhosis with few fat droplets. Both patients had undergone liver biopsy 26 years before the treatment of HCC. Histological review of the biopsy specimens revealed NASH (case 1) and fatty liver (case 2), respectively. It was suggested that these cases progressed from NASH and fatty liver, respectively, to NASH-related cirrhosis (so called burned-out NASH), eventually, developing HCC. These findings suggest that substantial number of burned-out NASH cases may be included in those with cryptogenic cirrhosis. These two patients are indicative cases that may reveal the long-term natural course of fatty liver and NASH.

  14. Impact of CDT Toxin on Human Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tiphanie Faïs

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Cytolethal distending toxin (CDT is found in Gram-negative bacteria, especially in certain Proteobacteria such as the Pasteurellaceae family, including Haemophilus ducreyi and Aggregatibacter (Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans, in the Enterobacteriaceae family and the Campylobacterales order, including the Campylobacter and Helicobacter species. In vitro and in vivo studies have clearly shown that this toxin has a strong effect on cellular physiology (inflammation, immune response modulation, tissue damage. Some works even suggest a potential involvement of CDT in cancers. In this review, we will discuss these different aspects.

  15. Impact of CDT Toxin on Human Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faïs, Tiphanie; Delmas, Julien; Serres, Arnaud; Bonnet, Richard; Dalmasso, Guillaume

    2016-01-01

    Cytolethal distending toxin (CDT) is found in Gram-negative bacteria, especially in certain Proteobacteria such as the Pasteurellaceae family, including Haemophilus ducreyi and Aggregatibacter (Actinobacillus) actinomycetemcomitans, in the Enterobacteriaceae family and the Campylobacterales order, including the Campylobacter and Helicobacter species. In vitro and in vivo studies have clearly shown that this toxin has a strong effect on cellular physiology (inflammation, immune response modulation, tissue damage). Some works even suggest a potential involvement of CDT in cancers. In this review, we will discuss these different aspects. PMID:27429000

  16. Impact of CDT Toxin on Human Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faïs, Tiphanie; Delmas, Julien; Serres, Arnaud; Bonnet, Richard; Dalmasso, Guillaume

    2016-07-15

    Cytolethal distending toxin (CDT) is found in Gram-negative bacteria, especially in certain Proteobacteria such as the Pasteurellaceae family, including Haemophilus ducreyi and Aggregatibacter (Actinobacillus) actinomycetemcomitans, in the Enterobacteriaceae family and the Campylobacterales order, including the Campylobacter and Helicobacter species. In vitro and in vivo studies have clearly shown that this toxin has a strong effect on cellular physiology (inflammation, immune response modulation, tissue damage). Some works even suggest a potential involvement of CDT in cancers. In this review, we will discuss these different aspects.

  17. Infectious prion diseases in humans: cannibalism, iatrogenicity and zoonoses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haïk, Stéphane; Brandel, Jean-Philippe

    2014-08-01

    In contrast with other neurodegenerative disorders associated to protein misfolding, human prion diseases include infectious forms (also called transmitted forms) such as kuru, iatrogenic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. The transmissible agent is thought to be solely composed of the abnormal isoform (PrP(Sc)) of the host-encoded prion protein that accumulated in the central nervous system of affected individuals. Compared to its normal counterpart, PrP(Sc) is β-sheet enriched and aggregated and its propagation is based on an autocatalytic conversion process. Increasing evidence supports the view that conformational variations of PrP(Sc) encoded the biological properties of the various prion strains that have been isolated by transmission studies in experimental models. Infectious forms of human prion diseases played a pivotal role in the emergence of the prion concept and in the characterization of the very unconventional properties of prions. They provide a unique model to understand how prion strains are selected and propagate in humans. Here, we review and discuss how genetic factors interplay with strain properties and route of transmission to influence disease susceptibility, incubation period and phenotypic expression in the light of the kuru epidemics due to ritual endocannibalism, the various series iatrogenic diseases secondary to extractive growth hormone treatment or dura mater graft and the epidemics of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease linked to dietary exposure to the agent of bovine spongiform encephalopathy.

  18. Spectroscopy techniques for human disease diagnosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navas-Moreno, Maria

    2011-12-01

    Modern medicine would benefit from the pursuit of new, more specific and easier to implement diagnosis tools. In recent years, Raman scattering, surface-enhanced Raman scattering and fluorescence spectroscopy have proven to be successful diagnostic techniques for a wide range of diseases including atherosclerosis, kidney stones, bone diseases, diabetes, and a wide collection of neoplasms. Optical spectroscopy has several advantages over more traditional diagnostic methods (i.e., histopathology, quantitative PCR, etc.) such as faster data analysis, nonspecific sample preparation, nonspecific labels/reagents/antibodies usage requirements, and immediate on-site implementation. In the present work, label-free in vitro fluorescence and surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) spectroscopy have been used to differentiate between blood cells of patients affected with myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPN) and those of healthy subjects. The SERS technique has also been applied to hemoglobin variants as well as to serum obtained from patients affected with chronic heart failure who positively or negatively responded to the seasonal influenza vaccine. We found that spectral ratios of the background fluorescence intensity that accompanies the SERS spectra of granulocytes serve as excellent markers for the presence of MPNs. In addition, we also found expression dysregulation of two hypoxia induced factor regulated genes, which correlates with our results obtained by SERS spectroscopy assay in MPN patients and supports the presence of the Warburg effect in MPNs. We hypothesize that SERS measures metabolic change in granulocytes through two possible mechanisms: (i) Changes in dielectric properties of the environment surrounding the silver-cell interface; and (ii) changes in flavin adenine dinucleotide concentrations, which in turn changes the relative contribution of the autofluorescence to the emission spectrum. These hypotheses are supported by SERS measurement of 2-deoxy

  19. Properties of human disease genes and the role of genes linked to Mendelian disorders in complex disease aetiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spataro, Nino; Rodríguez, Juan Antonio; Navarro, Arcadi

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Do genes presenting variation that has been linked to human disease have different biological properties than genes that have never been related to disease? What is the relationship between disease and fitness? Are the evolutionary pressures that affect genes linked to Mendelian diseases the same to those acting on genes whose variation contributes to complex disorders? The answers to these questions could shed light on the architecture of human genetic disorders and may have relevant implications when designing mapping strategies in future genetic studies. Here we show that, relative to non-disease genes, human disease (HD) genes have specific evolutionary profiles and protein network properties. Additionally, our results indicate that the mutation-selection balance renders an insufficient account of the evolutionary history of some HD genes and that adaptive selection could also contribute to shape their genetic architecture. Notably, several biological features of HD genes depend on the type of pathology (complex or Mendelian) with which they are related. For example, genes harbouring both causal variants for Mendelian disorders and risk factors for complex disease traits (Complex-Mendelian genes), tend to present higher functional relevance in the protein network and higher expression levels than genes associated only with complex disorders. Moreover, risk variants in Complex-Mendelian genes tend to present higher odds ratios than those on genes associated with the same complex disorders but with no link to Mendelian diseases. Taken together, our results suggest that genetic variation at genes linked to Mendelian disorders plays an important role in driving susceptibility to complex disease. PMID:28053046

  20. Early Stage Disease Diagnosis System Using Human Nail Image Processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trupti S. Indi

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Human’s hand nail is analyzed to identify many diseases at early stage of diagnosis. Study of person hand nail color helps in identification of particular disease in healthcare domain. The proposed system guides in such scenario to take decision in disease diagnosis. The input to the proposed system is person nail image. The system will process an image of nail and extract features of nail which is used for disease diagnosis. Human nail consist of various features, out of which proposed system uses nail color changes for disease diagnosis. Here, first training set data is prepared using Weka tool from nail images of patients of specific diseases. A feature extracted from input nail image is compared with the training data set to get result. In this experiment we found that using color feature of nail image average 65% results are correctly matched with training set data during three tests conducted.

  1. Modelling Neurodegenerative Diseases Using Human Pluripotent Stem Cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hall, Vanessa J.

    2016-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases are being modelled in-vitro using human patient-specific, induced pluripotent stem cells and transgenic embryonic stem cells to determine more about disease mechanisms, as well as to discover new treatments for patients. Current research in modelling Alzheimer’s disease......, frontotemporal dementia and Parkinson’s disease using pluripotent stem cells is described, along with the advent of gene-editing, which has been the complimentary tool for the field. Current methods used to model these diseases are predominantly dependent on 2D cell culture methods. Outcomes reveal that only...... that includes studying more complex 3D cell cultures, as well as accelerating aging of the neurons, may help to yield stronger phenotypes in the cultured cells. Thus, the use and application of pluripotent stem cells for modelling disease have already shown to be a powerful approach for discovering more about...

  2. Rare human diseases: 9p deletion syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Galagan V.O.

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Objective of the study was to review the anamnesis, pheno - and genotype in patients with rare chromosome disorders such as 9p deletion syndrome. Genetic methods of investigation (clinical and genealogical, cytogenetic, FISH- method, paraclinical and instrumental methods of examination were used. Karyotyping was performed by the G-method of differential staining of chromosomes. Only three cases of pathology were diagnosed in the Medical Genetics Center over the last 10 years. By anamnesis data nobody in the probands’ families had bad habits, was exposed to occupational hazards, took part in the elimination of the Chernobyl accident or lived in contaminated areas. Clinical signs of diseases have not been identified in probands’ parents. All probands had trigonocephaly, bilateral epicanthal folds, ocular hypertelorism, downslanting palpebral fissures, long philtrum, flat face and nasal bridge, low set ears with malformed auricles. Two patients of three ones had exophthalmos, contracture of the second and third fingers, abnormal external genitalia. In all three cases there was monosomy of chromosome 9 of critical segment p 24. Normal karyotypes were seen in all parents, so there were three cases of new mutations of 9p deletion syndrome. Retardation of physical, psycho-spech, mental development in proband with or without congenital anomalies requires medical genetic counseling in a specialized institution. Cases of reproductive loss in anamnesis require cytogenetic investigation of fetal membranes and amniotic fluid.

  3. Human Disease Diagnosis Using a Fuzzy Expert System

    CERN Document Server

    Hasan, Mir Anamul; Chowdhury, Ahsan Raja

    2010-01-01

    Human disease diagnosis is a complicated process and requires high level of expertise. Any attempt of developing a web-based expert system dealing with human disease diagnosis has to overcome various difficulties. This paper describes a project work aiming to develop a web-based fuzzy expert system for diagnosing human diseases. Now a days fuzzy systems are being used successfully in an increasing number of application areas; they use linguistic rules to describe systems. This research project focuses on the research and development of a web-based clinical tool designed to improve the quality of the exchange of health information between health care professionals and patients. Practitioners can also use this web-based tool to corroborate diagnosis. The proposed system is experimented on various scenarios in order to evaluate it's performance. In all the cases, proposed system exhibits satisfactory results.

  4. Human Disease Insight: An integrated knowledge-based platform for disease-gene-drug information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tasleem, Munazzah; Ishrat, Romana; Islam, Asimul; Ahmad, Faizan; Hassan, Md Imtaiyaz

    2016-01-01

    The scope of the Human Disease Insight (HDI) database is not limited to researchers or physicians as it also provides basic information to non-professionals and creates disease awareness, thereby reducing the chances of patient suffering due to ignorance. HDI is a knowledge-based resource providing information on human diseases to both scientists and the general public. Here, our mission is to provide a comprehensive human disease database containing most of the available useful information, with extensive cross-referencing. HDI is a knowledge management system that acts as a central hub to access information about human diseases and associated drugs and genes. In addition, HDI contains well-classified bioinformatics tools with helpful descriptions. These integrated bioinformatics tools enable researchers to annotate disease-specific genes and perform protein analysis, search for biomarkers and identify potential vaccine candidates. Eventually, these tools will facilitate the analysis of disease-associated data. The HDI provides two types of search capabilities and includes provisions for downloading, uploading and searching disease/gene/drug-related information. The logistical design of the HDI allows for regular updating. The database is designed to work best with Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome and is freely accessible at http://humandiseaseinsight.com.

  5. Antisense Oligonucleotides: Translation from Mouse Models to Human Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schoch, Kathleen M; Miller, Timothy M

    2017-06-21

    Multiple neurodegenerative diseases are characterized by single-protein dysfunction and aggregation. Treatment strategies for these diseases have often targeted downstream pathways to ameliorate consequences of protein dysfunction; however, targeting the source of that dysfunction, the affected protein itself, seems most judicious to achieve a highly effective therapeutic outcome. Antisense oligonucleotides (ASOs) are small sequences of DNA able to target RNA transcripts, resulting in reduced or modified protein expression. ASOs are ideal candidates for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, given numerous advancements made to their chemical modifications and delivery methods. Successes achieved in both animal models and human clinical trials have proven ASOs both safe and effective. With proper considerations in mind regarding the human applicability of ASOs, we anticipate ongoing in vivo research and clinical trial development of ASOs for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Exploring human disease using the Rat Genome Database

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mary Shimoyama

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Rattus norvegicus, the laboratory rat, has been a crucial model for studies of the environmental and genetic factors associated with human diseases for over 150 years. It is the primary model organism for toxicology and pharmacology studies, and has features that make it the model of choice in many complex-disease studies. Since 1999, the Rat Genome Database (RGD; http://rgd.mcw.edu has been the premier resource for genomic, genetic, phenotype and strain data for the laboratory rat. The primary role of RGD is to curate rat data and validate orthologous relationships with human and mouse genes, and make these data available for incorporation into other major databases such as NCBI, Ensembl and UniProt. RGD also provides official nomenclature for rat genes, quantitative trait loci, strains and genetic markers, as well as unique identifiers. The RGD team adds enormous value to these basic data elements through functional and disease annotations, the analysis and visual presentation of pathways, and the integration of phenotype measurement data for strains used as disease models. Because much of the rat research community focuses on understanding human diseases, RGD provides a number of datasets and software tools that allow users to easily explore and make disease-related connections among these datasets. RGD also provides comprehensive human and mouse data for comparative purposes, illustrating the value of the rat in translational research. This article introduces RGD and its suite of tools and datasets to researchers – within and beyond the rat community – who are particularly interested in leveraging rat-based insights to understand human diseases.

  7. Exploring human disease using the Rat Genome Database

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laulederkind, Stanley J. F.; De Pons, Jeff; Nigam, Rajni; Smith, Jennifer R.; Tutaj, Marek; Petri, Victoria; Hayman, G. Thomas; Wang, Shur-Jen; Ghiasvand, Omid; Thota, Jyothi; Dwinell, Melinda R.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Rattus norvegicus, the laboratory rat, has been a crucial model for studies of the environmental and genetic factors associated with human diseases for over 150 years. It is the primary model organism for toxicology and pharmacology studies, and has features that make it the model of choice in many complex-disease studies. Since 1999, the Rat Genome Database (RGD; http://rgd.mcw.edu) has been the premier resource for genomic, genetic, phenotype and strain data for the laboratory rat. The primary role of RGD is to curate rat data and validate orthologous relationships with human and mouse genes, and make these data available for incorporation into other major databases such as NCBI, Ensembl and UniProt. RGD also provides official nomenclature for rat genes, quantitative trait loci, strains and genetic markers, as well as unique identifiers. The RGD team adds enormous value to these basic data elements through functional and disease annotations, the analysis and visual presentation of pathways, and the integration of phenotype measurement data for strains used as disease models. Because much of the rat research community focuses on understanding human diseases, RGD provides a number of datasets and software tools that allow users to easily explore and make disease-related connections among these datasets. RGD also provides comprehensive human and mouse data for comparative purposes, illustrating the value of the rat in translational research. This article introduces RGD and its suite of tools and datasets to researchers – within and beyond the rat community – who are particularly interested in leveraging rat-based insights to understand human diseases. PMID:27736745

  8. Human keratin diseases: hereditary fragility of specific epithelial tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corden, L D; McLean, W H

    1996-12-01

    Keratins are heteropolymeric proteins which form the intermediate filament cytoskeleton in epithelial cells. Since 1991, mutations in several keratin genes have been found to cause a variety of human diseases affecting the epidermis and other epithelial structures. Epidermolysis bullosa simplex (EBS) was the first mechanobullous disease for which the underlying genetic lesion was found, with mutations in both the K5 and K14 genes rendering basal epidermal keratinocytes less resilient to trauma, resulting in skin fragility. The site of mutation in the keratin protein correlates with phenotypic severity in this disorder. Since mutations were identified in the basal cell keratins, the total number of keratin genes associated with diseases has risen to eleven. The rod domains of suprabasal keratins K1 and K10 are mutated in bullous congenital ichthyosiform erythroderma (BCIE; also called epidermolytic hyperkeratosis, EH) and mosaicism for K1/K10 mutations results in a nevoid distribution of EH. An unusual mutation in the VI domain of K1 has also been found to cause diffuse non-epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma (DNEPPK). Mutations in palmoplantar specific keratin K9 cause epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma (EPPK) and mutations in the late differentiation suprabasal keratin K2e cause ichthyosis bullosa of Siemens (IBS). In the last year or so, mutations were discovered in differentiation specific keratins K6a and K16 causing pachyonychia congenita type 1 and K17 mutations occur in pachyonychia congenita type 2. K16 and K17 mutations have also been reported to produce phenotypes with little or no nail changes: K16 mutations can present as focal non-epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma (NEPPK) and K17 mutations can result in a phenotype resembling steatocystoma multiplex. Recently, mutation of mucosal keratin pair K4 and K13 has been shown to underlie white sponge nevus (WSN). This year, the first mutations in a keratin-associated protein, plectin, were shown to

  9. DNA Aptamers in the Diagnosis and Treatment of Human Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qinchang Zhu

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Aptamers have a promising role in the field of life science and have been extensively researched for application as analytical tools, therapeutic agents and as vehicles for targeted drug delivery. Compared with RNA aptamers, DNA aptamers have inherent advantages in stability and facility of generation and synthesis. To better understand the specific potential of DNA aptamers, an overview of the progress in the generation and application of DNA aptamers in human disease diagnosis and therapy are presented in this review. Special attention is given to researches that are relatively close to practical application. DNA aptamers are expected to have great potential in the diagnosis and treatment of human diseases.

  10. Beyond membrane channelopathies: alternative mechanisms underlying complex human disease

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Konstantinos Dean BOUDOULAS; Peter J MOHLER

    2011-01-01

    Over the past fifteen years, our understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying human disease has flourished in large part due to the discovery of gene mutations linked with membrane ion channels and transporters. In fact, ion channel defects ("channelopathies" - the focus of this review series) have been associated with a spectrum of serious human disease phenotypes including cystic fibrosis, cardiac arrhythmia, diabetes, skeletal muscle defects, and neurological disorders. However, we now know that human disease, particularly excitable cell disease, may be caused by defects in non-ion channel polypeptides including in cellular components residing well beneath the plasma membrane. For example, over the past few years, a new class of potentially fatal cardiac arrhythmias has been linked with cytoplasmic proteins that include sub-membrane adapters such as ankyrin-B (ANK2),ankyrin-G (ANK3), and alpha-1 syntrophin, membrane coat proteins including caveolin-3 (CAV3), signaling platforms including yotiao (AKAPg), and cardiac enzymes (GPD1L). The focus of this review is to detail the exciting role of lamins, yet another class of gene products that have provided elegant new insight into human disease.

  11. Role of Epigenetics in Biology and Human Diseases

    OpenAIRE

    Moosavi, Azam; Ardekani, Ali Motevalizadeh

    2016-01-01

    For a long time, scientists have tried to describe disorders just by genetic or environmental factors. However, the role of epigenetics in human diseases has been considered from a half of century ago. In the last decade, this subject has attracted many interests, especially in complicated disorders such as behavior plasticity, memory, cancer, autoimmune disease, and addiction as well as neurodegenerative and psychological disorders. This review first explains the history and classification o...

  12. Therapy of Human Papillomavirus-Related Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, Peter L.; van der Burg, Sjoerd H.; Hampson, Ian N.; Broker, Thomas; Fiander, Alison; Lacey, Charles J.; Kitchener, Henry C.; Einstein, Mark H.

    2014-01-01

    This chapter reviews the current treatment of chronic and neoplastic HPV-associated conditions and the development of novel therapeutic approaches. Surgical excision of HPV-associated lower genital tract neoplasia is very successful but largely depends on secondary prevention programmes for identification of disease. Only high-risk HPV-driven chronic, preneoplastic lesions and some very early cancers cannot be successfully treated by surgical procedures alone. Chemoradiation therapy of cervical cancer contributes to the 66–79% cervical cancer survival at 5 years. Outlook for those patients with persistent or recurrent cervical cancer following treatment is very poor. Topical agents such as imiquimod (immune response modifier), cidofovir (inhibition of viral replication; induction apoptosis) or photodynamic therapy (direct damage of tumour and augmentation of anti-tumour immunity) have all shown some useful efficacy (~50–60%) in treatment of high grade vulvar intraepithelial neoplasia. Provider administered treatments of genital warts include cryotherapy, trichloracetic acid, or surgical removal which has the highest primary clearance rate. Patient applied therapies include podophyllotoxin and imiquimod. Recurrence after “successful” treatment is 30–40%. Further improvements could derive from a rational combination of current therapy with new drugs targeting molecular pathways mediated by HPV in cancer. Small molecule inhibitors targeting the DNA binding activities of HPV E1/E2 or the anti-apoptotic consequences of E6/E7 oncogenes are in preclinical development. Proteasome and histone deacetylase inhibitors, which can enhance apoptosis in HPV positive tumour cells, are being tested in early clinical trials. Chronic high-risk HPV infection/neoplasia is characterised by systemic and/or local immune suppressive regulatory or escape factors. Recently two E6/E7 vaccines have shown some clinical efficacy in high grade VIN patients and this correlated with strong

  13. Genome editing of human pluripotent stem cells to generate human cellular disease models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kiran Musunuru

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Disease modeling with human pluripotent stem cells has come into the public spotlight with the awarding of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for 2012 to Drs John Gurdon and Shinya Yamanaka for the discovery that mature cells can be reprogrammed to become pluripotent. This discovery has opened the door for the generation of pluripotent stem cells from individuals with disease and the differentiation of these cells into somatic cell types for the study of disease pathophysiology. The emergence of genome-editing technology over the past few years has made it feasible to generate and investigate human cellular disease models with even greater speed and efficiency. Here, recent technological advances in genome editing, and its utility in human biology and disease studies, are reviewed.

  14. Genome editing of human pluripotent stem cells to generate human cellular disease models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Musunuru, Kiran

    2013-07-01

    Disease modeling with human pluripotent stem cells has come into the public spotlight with the awarding of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for 2012 to Drs John Gurdon and Shinya Yamanaka for the discovery that mature cells can be reprogrammed to become pluripotent. This discovery has opened the door for the generation of pluripotent stem cells from individuals with disease and the differentiation of these cells into somatic cell types for the study of disease pathophysiology. The emergence of genome-editing technology over the past few years has made it feasible to generate and investigate human cellular disease models with even greater speed and efficiency. Here, recent technological advances in genome editing, and its utility in human biology and disease studies, are reviewed.

  15. Empirical analysis suggests continuous and homogeneous circulation of Newcastle disease virus in a wide range of wild bird species in Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cappelle, J; Caron, A; Servan De Almeida, R; Gil, P; Pedrono, M; Mundava, J; Fofana, B; Balança, G; Dakouo, M; Ould El Mamy, A B; Abolnik, C; Maminiaina, O F; Cumming, G S; De Visscher, M-N; Albina, E; Chevalier, V; Gaidet, N

    2015-04-01

    Newcastle disease (ND) is one of the most important poultry diseases worldwide and can lead to annual losses of up to 80% of backyard chickens in Africa. All bird species are considered susceptible to ND virus (NDV) infection but little is known about the role that wild birds play in the epidemiology of the virus. We present a long-term monitoring of 9000 wild birds in four African countries. Overall, 3·06% of the birds were PCR-positive for NDV infection, with prevalence ranging from 0% to 10% depending on the season, the site and the species considered. Our study shows that ND is circulating continuously and homogeneously in a large range of wild bird species. Several genotypes of NDV circulate concurrently in different species and are phylogenetically closely related to strains circulating in local domestic poultry, suggesting that wild birds may play several roles in the epidemiology of different NDV strains in Africa. We recommend that any strategic plan aiming at controlling ND in Africa should take into account the potential role of the local wild bird community in the transmission of the disease.

  16. Molecular epidemiology of human oral Chagas disease outbreaks in Colombia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan David Ramírez

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Trypanosoma cruzi, the causative agent of Chagas disease, displays significant genetic variability revealed by six Discrete Typing Units (TcI-TcVI. In this pathology, oral transmission represents an emerging epidemiological scenario where different outbreaks associated to food/beverages consumption have been reported in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Ecuador and Venezuela. In Colombia, six human oral outbreaks have been reported corroborating the importance of this transmission route. Molecular epidemiology of oral outbreaks is barely known observing the incrimination of TcI, TcII, TcIV and TcV genotypes. METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: High-throughput molecular characterization was conducted performing MLMT (Multilocus Microsatellite Typing and mtMLST (mitochondrial Multilocus Sequence Typing strategies on 50 clones from ten isolates. Results allowed observing the occurrence of TcI, TcIV and mixed infection of distinct TcI genotypes. Thus, a majority of specific mitochondrial haplotypes and allelic multilocus genotypes associated to the sylvatic cycle of transmission were detected in the dataset with the foreseen presence of mitochondrial haplotypes and allelic multilocus genotypes associated to the domestic cycle of transmission. CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest the incrimination of sylvatic genotypes in the oral outbreaks occurred in Colombia. We observed patterns of super-infection and/or co-infection with a tailored association with the severe forms of myocarditis in the acute phase of the disease. The transmission dynamics of this infection route based on molecular epidemiology evidence was unraveled and the clinical and biological implications are discussed.

  17. Vibrio cholerae Infection of Drosophilamelanogaster Mimics the Human Disease Cholera.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2005-09-01

    Full Text Available Cholera, the pandemic diarrheal disease caused by the gram-negative bacterium Vibrio cholerae, continues to be a major public health challenge in the developing world. Cholera toxin, which is responsible for the voluminous stools of cholera, causes constitutive activation of adenylyl cyclase, resulting in the export of ions into the intestinal lumen. Environmental studies have demonstrated a close association between V. cholerae and many species of arthropods including insects. Here we report the susceptibility of the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, to oral V. cholerae infection through a process that exhibits many of the hallmarks of human disease: (i death of the fly is dependent on the presence of cholera toxin and is preceded by rapid weight loss; (ii flies harboring mutant alleles of either adenylyl cyclase, Gsalpha, or the Gardos K channel homolog SK are resistant to V. cholerae infection; and (iii ingestion of a K channel blocker along with V. cholerae protects wild-type flies against death. In mammals, ingestion of as little as 25 mug of cholera toxin results in massive diarrhea. In contrast, we found that ingestion of cholera toxin was not lethal to the fly. However, when cholera toxin was co-administered with a pathogenic strain of V. cholerae carrying a chromosomal deletion of the genes encoding cholera toxin, death of the fly ensued. These findings suggest that additional virulence factors are required for intoxication of the fly that may not be essential for intoxication of mammals. Furthermore, we demonstrate for the first time the mechanism of action of cholera toxin in a whole organism and the utility of D. melanogaster as an accurate, inexpensive model for elucidation of host susceptibility to cholera.

  18. Human prion diseases: surgical lessons learned from iatrogenic prion transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonda, David J; Manjila, Sunil; Mehndiratta, Prachi; Khan, Fahd; Miller, Benjamin R; Onwuzulike, Kaine; Puoti, Gianfranco; Cohen, Mark L; Schonberger, Lawrence B; Cali, Ignazio

    2016-07-01

    The human prion diseases, or transmissible spongiform encephalopathies, have captivated our imaginations since their discovery in the Fore linguistic group in Papua New Guinea in the 1950s. The mysterious and poorly understood "infectious protein" has become somewhat of a household name in many regions across the globe. From bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), commonly identified as mad cow disease, to endocannibalism, media outlets have capitalized on these devastatingly fatal neurological conditions. Interestingly, since their discovery, there have been more than 492 incidents of iatrogenic transmission of prion diseases, largely resulting from prion-contaminated growth hormone and dura mater grafts. Although fewer than 9 cases of probable iatrogenic neurosurgical cases of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) have been reported worldwide, the likelihood of some missed cases and the potential for prion transmission by neurosurgery create considerable concern. Laboratory studies indicate that standard decontamination and sterilization procedures may be insufficient to completely remove infectivity from prion-contaminated instruments. In this unfortunate event, the instruments may transmit the prion disease to others. Much caution therefore should be taken in the absence of strong evidence against the presence of a prion disease in a neurosurgical patient. While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) have devised risk assessment and decontamination protocols for the prevention of iatrogenic transmission of the prion diseases, incidents of possible exposure to prions have unfortunately occurred in the United States. In this article, the authors outline the historical discoveries that led from kuru to the identification and isolation of the pathological prion proteins in addition to providing a brief description of human prion diseases and iatrogenic forms of CJD, a brief history of prion disease nosocomial transmission

  19. Mitochondrial uncoupling proteins in human physiology and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagen, T; Vidal-Puig, A

    2002-02-01

    Uncoupling proteins are mitochondrial carrier proteins that catalyse a regulated proton leak across the inner mitochondrial membrane, diverting free energy from ATP synthesis by the mitochondrial F0F1-ATP synthase to the production of heat. Uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1), which is exclusively expressed in brown adipose tissue, is the mediator of thermogenesis in response to beta-adrenergic stimulation. Using gene a knockout mouse model, UCP1 has been shown to be required for cold acclimation. Two homologues of UCP1, UCP2 and UCP3, have been identified recently and show a much wider tissue distribution. UCP2 and UCP3 have been postulated to play a role in the regulation of cold acclimation, energy expenditure and diet-induced thermogenesis in humans, who, in contrast to rodents, have very little brown fat in adult life. However, evidence is accumulating that thermogenesis and regulation of body weight may not be the physiological functions of UCP2 and UCP3. For instance, mice deficient for UCP2 or UCP3 are not cold-intolerant and do not develop obesity. Alternative functions were suggested, primarily based on findings in UCP2 and UCP3 gene knockout mice. Both UCP2- and UCP3-deficient mice were found to overproduce reactive oxygen species and UCP2-deficient mice to hypersecrete insulin. Thus, the UCP1 homologues may play a role in regulating mitochondrial production of reactive oxygen species and b-cell function. In this review, we discuss the role of UCP1, UCP2 and UCP3 in human physiology and disease, primarily based on findings from the various animal models that have been generated.

  20. Oral lesions associated with human immunodeficiency virus disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patton, Lauren L

    2013-10-01

    Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-associated oral disease among people living with HIV infection includes oral candidiasis, oral hairy leukoplakia, Kaposi sarcoma, oral warts, herpes simplex virus ulcers, major aphthous ulcers or ulcers not otherwise specified, HIV salivary gland disease, and atypical gingival and periodontal diseases. Diagnosis of some oral lesions is based on clinical appearance and behavior, whereas others require biopsy, culture, or imaging for definitive diagnosis. Management strategies including pharmacologic and nonpharmacologic approaches are discussed in this article. Dentists also need to be cognizant of the potential oral side effects of HIV antiretroviral medications.

  1. Reverse engineering human neurodegenerative disease using pluripotent stem cell technology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Ying; Deng, Wenbin

    2016-05-01

    With the technology of reprogramming somatic cells by introducing defined transcription factors that enables the generation of "induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs)" with pluripotency comparable to that of embryonic stem cells (ESCs), it has become possible to use this technology to produce various cells and tissues that have been difficult to obtain from living bodies. This advancement is bringing forth rapid progress in iPSC-based disease modeling, drug screening, and regenerative medicine. More and more studies have demonstrated that phenotypes of adult-onset neurodegenerative disorders could be rather faithfully recapitulated in iPSC-derived neural cell cultures. Moreover, despite the adult-onset nature of the diseases, pathogenic phenotypes and cellular abnormalities often exist in early developmental stages, providing new "windows of opportunity" for understanding mechanisms underlying neurodegenerative disorders and for discovering new medicines. The cell reprogramming technology enables a reverse engineering approach for modeling the cellular degenerative phenotypes of a wide range of human disorders. An excellent example is the study of the human neurodegenerative disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) using iPSCs. ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative disease characterized by the loss of upper and lower motor neurons (MNs), culminating in muscle wasting and death from respiratory failure. The iPSC approach provides innovative cell culture platforms to serve as ALS patient-derived model systems. Researchers have converted iPSCs derived from ALS patients into MNs and various types of glial cells, all of which are involved in ALS, to study the disease. The iPSC technology could be used to determine the role of specific genetic factors to track down what's wrong in the neurodegenerative disease process in the "disease-in-a-dish" model. Meanwhile, parallel experiments of targeting the same specific genes in human ESCs could also be performed to control

  2. Disease modeling and drug screening for neurological diseases using human induced pluripotent stem cells

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xiao-hong XU; Zhong ZHONG

    2013-01-01

    With the general decline of pharmaceutical research productivity,there are concerns that many components of the drug discovery process need to be redesigned and optimized.For example,the human immortalized cell lines or animal primary cells commonly used in traditional drug screening may not faithfully recapitulate the pathological mechanisms of human diseases,leading to biases in assays,targets,or compounds that do not effectively address disease mechanisms.Recent advances in stem cell research,especially in the development of induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology,provide a new paradigm for drug screening by permitting the use of human cells with the same genetic makeup as the patients without the typical quantity constraints associated with patient primary cells.In this article,we will review the progress made to date on cellular disease models using human stem cells,with a focus on patient-specific iPSCs for neurological diseases.We will discuss the key challenges and the factors that associated with the success of using stem cell models for drug discovery through examples from monogenic diseases,diseases with various known genetic components,and complex diseases caused by a combination of genetic,environmental and other factors.

  3. Disease modeling and drug screening for neurological diseases using human induced pluripotent stem cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xiao-hong; Zhong, Zhong

    2013-06-01

    With the general decline of pharmaceutical research productivity, there are concerns that many components of the drug discovery process need to be redesigned and optimized. For example, the human immortalized cell lines or animal primary cells commonly used in traditional drug screening may not faithfully recapitulate the pathological mechanisms of human diseases, leading to biases in assays, targets, or compounds that do not effectively address disease mechanisms. Recent advances in stem cell research, especially in the development of induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology, provide a new paradigm for drug screening by permitting the use of human cells with the same genetic makeup as the patients without the typical quantity constraints associated with patient primary cells. In this article, we will review the progress made to date on cellular disease models using human stem cells, with a focus on patient-specific iPSCs for neurological diseases. We will discuss the key challenges and the factors that associated with the success of using stem cell models for drug discovery through examples from monogenic diseases, diseases with various known genetic components, and complex diseases caused by a combination of genetic, environmental and other factors.

  4. Human gene therapy and imaging in neurological diseases

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jacobs, Andreas H.; Winkler, Alexandra [Max Planck-Institute for Neurological Research, Center of Molecular Medicine (CMMC) and Department of Neurology, Cologne (Germany); MPI for Neurological Research, Laboratory for Gene Therapy and Molecular Imaging, Cologne (Germany); Castro, Maria G.; Lowenstein, Pedro [University of California Los Angeles (United States). Department of Medicine

    2005-12-01

    Molecular imaging aims to assess non-invasively disease-specific biological and molecular processes in animal models and humans in vivo. Apart from precise anatomical localisation and quantification, the most intriguing advantage of such imaging is the opportunity it provides to investigate the time course (dynamics) of disease-specific molecular events in the intact organism. Further, molecular imaging can be used to address basic scientific questions, e.g. transcriptional regulation, signal transduction or protein/protein interaction, and will be essential in developing treatment strategies based on gene therapy. Most importantly, molecular imaging is a key technology in translational research, helping to develop experimental protocols which may later be applied to human patients. Over the past 20 years, imaging based on positron emission tomography (PET) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been employed for the assessment and ''phenotyping'' of various neurological diseases, including cerebral ischaemia, neurodegeneration and brain gliomas. While in the past neuro-anatomical studies had to be performed post mortem, molecular imaging has ushered in the era of in vivo functional neuro-anatomy by allowing neuroscience to image structure, function, metabolism and molecular processes of the central nervous system in vivo in both health and disease. Recently, PET and MRI have been successfully utilised together in the non-invasive assessment of gene transfer and gene therapy in humans. To assess the efficiency of gene transfer, the same markers are being used in animals and humans, and have been applied for phenotyping human disease. Here, we review the imaging hallmarks of focal and disseminated neurological diseases, such as cerebral ischaemia, neurodegeneration and glioblastoma multiforme, as well as the attempts to translate gene therapy's experimental knowledge into clinical applications and the way in which this process is being

  5. The human genome, implications for oral health and diseases, and dental education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slavkin, H C

    2001-05-01

    We are living in an extraordinary time in human history punctuated by the convergence of major scientific and technological progress in the physical, chemical, and biological ways of knowing. Equally extraordinary are the sparkling intellectual developments at the interface between fields of study. One major example of an emerging influence on the future of oral health education is at the interface between the human genome, information technology, and biotechnology with miniaturizations (nanotechnology), suggesting new oral health professional competencies for a new century. A great deal has recently been learned from human and non-human genomics. Genome databases are being "mined" to prompt hypothesis-driven "postgenomic" or functional genomic science in microbial models such as Candida albicans related to oral candidiasis and in human genomics related to biological processes found in craniofacial, oral, and dental diseases and disorders. This growing body of knowledge is already providing the gene content of many oral microbial and human genomes and the knowledge of genetic variants or polymorphisms related to disease, disease progression, and disease response to therapeutics (pharmacogenomics). The knowledge base from human and non-human genomics, functional genomics, biotechnology, and associated information technologies is serving to revolutionize oral health promotion, risk assessment using biomarkers and disease prevention, diagnostics, treatments, and the full range of therapeutics for craniofacial, oral, and dental diseases and disorders. Education, training, and research opportunities are already transforming the curriculum and pedagogy for undergraduate science majors, predoctoral health professional programs, residency and specialty programs, and graduate programs within the health professions. In the words of Bob Dylan, "the times they are a-changing."

  6. Modeling Human Graft-Versus-Host Disease in Immunocompromised Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norelli, Margherita; Camisa, Barbara; Bondanza, Attilio

    2016-01-01

    Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) from an allogeneic donor is an effective form of cancer immunotherapy, especially for acute leukemias. HSCT is however frequently complicated by the occurrence of graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). Immunocompromised mice infused with human T cells often develop a clinical syndrome resembling human GVHD (xenogeneic or X-GVHD). Herein, we describe a method for inducing X-GVHD in a highly reproducible manner. Given the human nature of immune effectors, this xenogeneic model can be routinely adopted for screening the efficacy of new treatments for GVHD.

  7. Mapping gene associations in human mitochondria using clinical disease phenotypes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Curt Scharfe

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Nuclear genes encode most mitochondrial proteins, and their mutations cause diverse and debilitating clinical disorders. To date, 1,200 of these mitochondrial genes have been recorded, while no standardized catalog exists of the associated clinical phenotypes. Such a catalog would be useful to develop methods to analyze human phenotypic data, to determine genotype-phenotype relations among many genes and diseases, and to support the clinical diagnosis of mitochondrial disorders. Here we establish a clinical phenotype catalog of 174 mitochondrial disease genes and study associations of diseases and genes. Phenotypic features such as clinical signs and symptoms were manually annotated from full-text medical articles and classified based on the hierarchical MeSH ontology. This classification of phenotypic features of each gene allowed for the comparison of diseases between different genes. In turn, we were then able to measure the phenotypic associations of disease genes for which we calculated a quantitative value that is based on their shared phenotypic features. The results showed that genes sharing more similar phenotypes have a stronger tendency for functional interactions, proving the usefulness of phenotype similarity values in disease gene network analysis. We then constructed a functional network of mitochondrial genes and discovered a higher connectivity for non-disease than for disease genes, and a tendency of disease genes to interact with each other. Utilizing these differences, we propose 168 candidate genes that resemble the characteristic interaction patterns of mitochondrial disease genes. Through their network associations, the candidates are further prioritized for the study of specific disorders such as optic neuropathies and Parkinson disease. Most mitochondrial disease phenotypes involve several clinical categories including neurologic, metabolic, and gastrointestinal disorders, which might indicate the effects of gene defects

  8. Molecular functions of human endogenous retroviruses in health and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suntsova, Maria; Garazha, Andrew; Ivanova, Alena; Kaminsky, Dmitry; Zhavoronkov, Alex; Buzdin, Anton

    2015-10-01

    Human endogenous retroviruses (HERVs) and related genetic elements form 504 distinct families and occupy ~8% of human genome. Recent success of high-throughput experimental technologies facilitated understanding functional impact of HERVs for molecular machinery of human cells. HERVs encode active retroviral proteins, which may exert important physiological functions in the body, but also may be involved in the progression of cancer and numerous human autoimmune, neurological and infectious diseases. The spectrum of related malignancies includes, but not limits to, multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, lupus, schizophrenia, multiple cancer types and HIV. In addition, HERVs regulate expression of the neighboring host genes and modify genomic regulatory landscape, e.g., by providing regulatory modules like transcription factor binding sites (TFBS). Indeed, recent bioinformatic profiling identified ~110,000 regulatory active HERV elements, which formed at least ~320,000 human TFBS. These and other peculiarities of HERVs might have played an important role in human evolution and speciation. In this paper, we focus on the current progress in understanding of normal and pathological molecular niches of HERVs, on their implications in human evolution, normal physiology and disease. We also review the available databases dealing with various aspects of HERV genetics.

  9. Differential Changes in Postsynaptic Density Proteins in Postmortem Huntington’s Disease and Parkinson’s Disease Human Brains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Fourie

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available NMDA and AMPA-type glutamate receptors and their bound membrane-associated guanylate kinases (MAGUKs are critical for synapse development and plasticity. We hypothesised that these proteins may play a role in the changes in synapse function that occur in Huntington’s disease (HD and Parkinson’s disease (PD. We performed immunohistochemical analysis of human postmortem brain tissue to examine changes in the expression of SAP97, PSD-95, GluA2 and GluN1 in human control, and HD- and PD-affected hippocampus and striatum. Significant increases in SAP97 and PSD-95 were observed in the HD and PD hippocampus, and PSD95 was downregulated in HD striatum. We observed a significant increase in GluN1 in the HD hippocampus and a decrease in GluA2 in HD and PD striatum. Parallel immunohistochemistry experiments in the YAC128 mouse model of HD showed no change in the expression levels of these synaptic proteins. Our human data show that major but different changes occur in glutamatergic proteins in HD versus PD human brains. Moreover, the changes in human HD brains differ from those occurring in the YAC128 HD mouse model, suggesting that unique changes occur at a subcellular level in the HD human hippocampus.

  10. Molecular Genetic Approaches to Human Diseases Involving Mental Retardation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Latt, Samuel A.; And Others

    1984-01-01

    Recombinant DNA techniques provide new approaches to the diagnosis and analysis of inherited human diseases associated with mental retardation, such as Lesch-Nyhan syndrome, phenylketonauria, the Fragile X syndrome, Down syndrome, and those associated with deletions or duplications of subchromosomal regions. (Author/CL)

  11. Recognizing filamentous basidiomycetes as agents of human disease: A review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chowdhary, A.; Kathuria, S.; Agarwal, K.; Meis, J.F.G.M.

    2014-01-01

    Filamentous basidiomycetes (BM) are common environmental fungi that have recently emerged as important human pathogens, inciting a wide array of clinical manifestations that include allergic and invasive diseases. We reviewed 218 reported global cases of BM fungi. The most common etiologic agent was

  12. Lyme disease: a unique human model for an infectious etiology of rheumatic disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malawista, S. E.; Steere, A. C.; Hardin, J. A.

    1984-01-01

    Lyme disease is a complex immune-mediated multi-system disorder that is infectious in origin and inflammatory or "rheumatic" in expression. Through its epidemiologic characteristics, large numbers of a seasonally synchronized patient population are readily available for prospective study. Lyme disease has a known clinical onset ("zero time"), marked by the characteristic expanding skin lesion, erythema chronicum migrans, and a clearly defined pre-articular phase. At least some manifestations of the disorder are responsive to antibiotics, and the causative agent--a spirochete--is now known. These advantages make Lyme disease unique as a human model for an infectious etiology of rheumatic disease. PMID:6516449

  13. Matrilysin (MMP-7) Inhibition of BMP-7 Induced Renal Tubular Branching Morphogenesis Suggests a Role in the Pathogenesis of Human Renal Dysplasia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harju-Baker, Susanna; Rims, Cliff; Sheen, Joong-Hyuk; Liapis, Helen

    2012-01-01

    Congenital renal dysplasia (RD) is a severe form of congenital renal malformation characterized by disruption of normal renal development with cyst formation, reduced or absent nephrons, and impaired renal growth. The authors previously identified that matrilysin (matrix metalloproteinase–7) was overexpressed in a microarray gene expression analysis of human RD compared to normal control kidneys. They now find that active matrilysin gene transcription and protein synthesis occur within dysplastic tubules and epithelial cells lining cysts in human RD by RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry. Similar staining patterns were seen in obstructed kidneys of pouch opossums that show histological features similar to that of human RD. In vitro, matrilysin inhibits formation of branching structures in mIMCD-3 cells stimulated by bone morphogenetic protein–7 (BMP-7) but does not inhibit hepatocyte growth factor–stimulated branching. BMP-7 signaling is essential for normal kidney development, and overexpression of catalytically active matrilysin in human embryonic kidney 293 cells reduces endogenous BMP-7 protein levels and inhibits phosphorylation of BMP-7 SMAD signaling intermediates. These findings suggest that matrilysin expression in RD may be an injury response that disrupts normal nephrogenesis by impairing BMP-7 signaling. PMID:22215634

  14. PXR- and CAR-mediated herbal effect on human diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Chenshu; Huang, Min; Bi, Huichang

    2016-09-01

    The pregnane X receptor (PXR) and constitutive androstane receptor (CAR) are two members of the nuclear receptor superfamily that regulate a broad range of genes involved in drug metabolism and transport. A variety of naturally occurring compounds present in herbal medicines were identified as ligands of PXR and CAR. Recently, accumulative evidences have revealed the PXR- and CAR-mediated herbal effect against multiple human diseases, including inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), cholestatic liver disease, and jaundice. The current review summarized the recent progress in identifying the expanding libraries of herbal medicine as ligands for PXR and CAR. Moreover, the potential for herbal medicines as promising therapeutic agents which were mainly regulated through PXR/CAR signaling pathways was also discussed. The discovery of herbal medicines as modulators of PXR and CAR, and their PXR- and CAR-mediated effect on human diseases will provide a basis for rational drug design, and eventually be explored as a novel therapeutic approach against human diseases. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Xenobiotic nuclear receptors: New Tricks for An Old Dog, edited by Dr. Wen Xie.

  15. Genetic evidence for common pathways in human age-related diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Simon C; Dong, Xiao; Vijg, Jan; Suh, Yousin

    2015-10-01

    Aging is the single largest risk factor for chronic disease. Studies in model organisms have identified conserved pathways that modulate aging rate and the onset and progression of multiple age-related diseases, suggesting that common pathways of aging may influence age-related diseases in humans as well. To determine whether there is genetic evidence supporting the notion of common pathways underlying age-related diseases, we analyzed the genes and pathways found to be associated with five major categories of age-related disease using a total of 410 genomewide association studies (GWAS). While only a small number of genes are shared among all five disease categories, those found in at least three of the five major age-related disease categories are highly enriched for apoliprotein metabolism genes. We found that a more substantial number of gene ontology (GO) terms are shared among the 5 age-related disease categories and shared GO terms include canonical aging pathways identified in model organisms, such as nutrient-sensing signaling, translation, proteostasis, stress responses, and genome maintenance. Taking advantage of the vast amount of genetic data from the GWAS, our findings provide the first direct evidence that conserved pathways of aging simultaneously influence multiple age-related diseases in humans as has been demonstrated in model organisms. © 2015 The Authors. Aging Cell published by the Anatomical Society and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Viral hepatitis E: A disease of humans and animals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kureljušić Branislav

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The hepatitis E virus is ubiquitous in all parts of the world where pig production exists. The infection occurs in several animal species and its course is mostly asymptomatic. Viral strains isolated from pigs and humans are genetically similar, which indicates a potential zoonotic nature of the disease, and the possibility that pigs, and perhaps also other species of animals diseased with viral hepatitis E are a source of infection to humans. The pig hepatitis E virus, which is similar to the hepatitis E virus in humans, was isolated and described for the first time in the USA in 1997. The infection of pigs with hepatitis E virus occurs through faeco-oral transmission, by ingestion of feed and water contaminated with the virus, or through direct contact between infected and healthy animals. The pathogenesis of this infection in pigs differs from its pathogenesis in humans and it has not been sufficiently examined in all its aspects. Even though viral hepatitis E in pigs has been described as a subclinical disease, some authors describe changes in the concentration of certain biochemical parameters in blood serum of the infected pigs. Histologically, a mild to moderate lymphotic-plasma cellular infiltration is observed in livers of infected pigs, as well as focal areas of hepatocyte necrosis. Viral hepatitis E is an endemic disease of humans in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. In developed countries, hepatitis E sporadically occurs in humans, but it is becoming of increasing importance in particular in Japan, North America, and Europe, because the populations of these areas travel extensively to the endemic regions or as a result of the consumption of thermally untreated meat of wild boar and products made from thermally untreated meat. Pork products can be contaminated with hepatitis E virus. Further proof that indicates the zoonotic potential of this virus and places this diseases among the group of professional diseases of farmers and

  17. Human genetics of infectious diseases: a unified theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casanova, Jean-Laurent; Abel, Laurent

    2007-01-01

    Since the early 1950s, the dominant paradigm in the human genetics of infectious diseases postulates that rare monogenic immunodeficiencies confer vulnerability to multiple infectious diseases (one gene, multiple infections), whereas common infections are associated with the polygenic inheritance of multiple susceptibility genes (one infection, multiple genes). Recent studies, since 1996 in particular, have challenged this view. A newly recognised group of primary immunodeficiencies predisposing the individual to a principal or single type of infection is emerging. In parallel, several common infections have been shown to reflect the inheritance of one major susceptibility gene, at least in some populations. This novel causal relationship (one gene, one infection) blurs the distinction between patient-based Mendelian genetics and population-based complex genetics, and provides a unified conceptual frame for exploring the molecular genetic basis of infectious diseases in humans. PMID:17255931

  18. Leveraging human-centered design in chronic disease prevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matheson, Gordon O; Pacione, Chris; Shultz, Rebecca K; Klügl, Martin

    2015-04-01

    Bridging the knowing-doing gap in the prevention of chronic disease requires deep appreciation and understanding of the complexities inherent in behavioral change. Strategies that have relied exclusively on the implementation of evidence-based data have not yielded the desired progress. The tools of human-centered design, used in conjunction with evidence-based data, hold much promise in providing an optimal approach for advancing disease prevention efforts. Directing the focus toward wide-scale education and application of human-centered design techniques among healthcare professionals will rapidly multiply their effective ability to bring the kind of substantial results in disease prevention that have eluded the healthcare industry for decades. This, in turn, would increase the likelihood of prevention by design.

  19. Study on workloads of human care worker with the introduction of IT system - the characteristics of work loads by observational research and the suggestions for KAIZEN.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mizuno, Yuki; Yoshikawa, Toru; Matsuda, Fumiko; Takeuchi, Yuriko; Motegi, Nobuyuki; Ikegami, Thor; Sakai, Kazuhiro

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to clarify the characteristic of workloads on human care worker with the introduction of IT system, and suggested the support measures for KAIZEN in Japan. The investigation method is workflow line and hearing with a focus on work observation. The objects were 8 human care workers of the acute hospital that introduced an electronic system. By the introduction of the electronic chart, the nurse station sojourn time decreased, sickroom sojourn time increased, and time about direct nursing care to a patient increased. In addition, access to patient information became easy, and the offer of the health care service based on correct information came to be possible in real time. By The point of workflow line, it was effect that moving lengths decreased in order to install the electronic chart in patients' rooms. Though, it was a problem that it hasn't formed where to place the instruments such as sphygmomanometer, clinical thermometer and others.

  20. Impact of climate change on human infectious diseases: Empirical evidence and human adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xiaoxu; Lu, Yongmei; Zhou, Sen; Chen, Lifan; Xu, Bing

    2016-01-01

    Climate change refers to long-term shifts in weather conditions and patterns of extreme weather events. It may lead to changes in health threat to human beings, multiplying existing health problems. This review examines the scientific evidences on the impact of climate change on human infectious diseases. It identifies research progress and gaps on how human society may respond to, adapt to, and prepare for the related changes. Based on a survey of related publications between 1990 and 2015, the terms used for literature selection reflect three aspects--the components of infectious diseases, climate variables, and selected infectious diseases. Humans' vulnerability to the potential health impacts by climate change is evident in literature. As an active agent, human beings may control the related health effects that may be effectively controlled through adopting proactive measures, including better understanding of the climate change patterns and of the compound disease-specific health effects, and effective allocation of technologies and resources to promote healthy lifestyles and public awareness. The following adaptation measures are recommended: 1) to go beyond empirical observations of the association between climate change and infectious diseases and develop more scientific explanations, 2) to improve the prediction of spatial-temporal process of climate change and the associated shifts in infectious diseases at various spatial and temporal scales, and 3) to establish locally effective early warning systems for the health effects of predicated climate change.

  1. Humane killing of animals for disease control purposes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thornber, P M; Rubira, R J; Styles, D K

    2014-04-01

    Killing for disease control purposes is an emotional issue for everyone concerned. Large-scale euthanasia or depopulation of animals may be necessary for the emergency control or eradication of animal diseases, to remove animals from a compromised situation (e.g. following flood, storm, fire, drought or a feed contamination event), to effect welfare depopulation when there is an oversupply due to a dysfunctional or closed marketing channel, or to depopulate and dispose of animals with minimal handling to decrease the risk of a zoonotic disease infecting humans. The World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) developed international standards to provide advice on humane killing for various species and situations. Some fundamental issues are defined, such as competency of animal handling and implementation of humane killing techniques. Some of these methods have been used for many years, but novel approaches for the mass killing of particular species are being explored. Novel vaccines and new diagnostic techniques that differentiate between vaccinated and infected animals will save many animals from being killed as part of biosecurity response measures. Unfortunately, the destruction of affected livestock will still be required to control diseases whilst vaccination programmes are activated or where effective vaccines are not available. This paper reviews the principles of humane destruction and depopulation and explores available techniques with their associated advantages and disadvantages. It also identifies some current issues that merit consideration, such as legislative conflicts (emergency disease legislation versus animal welfare legislation, occupational health and safety), media issues, opinions on the future approaches to killing for disease control, and animal welfare.

  2. Coupling infectious diseases, human preventive behavior, and networks--a conceptual framework for epidemic modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mao, Liang; Yang, Yan

    2012-01-01

    Human-disease interactions involve the transmission of infectious diseases among individuals and the practice of preventive behavior by individuals. Both infectious diseases and preventive behavior diffuse simultaneously through human networks and interact with one another, but few existing models have coupled them together. This article proposes a conceptual framework to fill this knowledge gap and illustrates the model establishment. The conceptual model consists of two networks and two diffusion processes. The two networks include: an infection network that transmits diseases and a communication network that channels inter-personal influence regarding preventive behavior. Both networks are composed of same individuals but different types of interactions. This article further introduces modeling approaches to formulize such a framework, including the individual-based modeling approach, network theory, disease transmission models and behavioral models. An illustrative model was implemented to simulate a coupled-diffusion process during an influenza epidemic. The simulation outcomes suggest that the transmission probability of a disease and the structure of infection network have profound effects on the dynamics of coupled-diffusion. The results imply that current models may underestimate disease transmissibility parameters, because human preventive behavior has not been considered. This issue calls for a new interdisciplinary study that incorporates theories from epidemiology, social science, behavioral science, and health psychology. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Transgenic rabbits as therapeutic protein bioreactors and human disease models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Jianglin; Watanabe, Teruo

    2003-09-01

    Genetically modified laboratory animals provide a powerful approach for studying gene expression and regulation and allow one to directly examine structure-function and cause-and-effect relationships in pathophysiological processes. Today, transgenic mice are available as a research tool in almost every research institution. On the other hand, the development of a relatively large mammalian transgenic model, transgenic rabbits, has provided unprecedented opportunities for investigators to study the mechanisms of human diseases and has also provided an alternative way to produce therapeutic proteins to treat human diseases. Transgenic rabbits expressing human genes have been used as a model for cardiovascular disease, AIDS, and cancer research. The recombinant proteins can be produced from the milk of transgenic rabbits not only at lower cost but also on a relatively large scale. One of the most promising and attractive recombinant proteins derived from transgenic rabbit milk, human alpha-glucosidase, has been successfully used to treat the patients who are genetically deficient in this enzyme. Although the pronuclear microinjection is still the major and most popular method for the creation of transgenic rabbits, recent progress in gene targeting and animal cloning has opened new avenues that should make it possible to produce transgenic rabbits by somatic cell nuclear transfer in the future. Based on a computer-assisted search of the studies of transgenic rabbits published in the English literature here, we introduce to the reader the achievements made thus far with transgenic rabbits, with emphasis on the application of these rabbits as human disease models and live bioreactors for producing human therapeutic proteins and on the recent progress in cloned rabbits.

  4. Re-evaluation of bone pain in patients with type 1 Gaucher disease suggests that bone crises occur in small bones as well as long bones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baris, Hagit N; Weisz Hubshman, Monika; Bar-Sever, Zvi; Kornreich, Liora; Shkalim Zemer, Vered; Cohen, Ian J

    2016-09-01

    Bone crises in type 1 Gaucher disease are reported in long bones and occasionally in weight bearing bones and other bones, but rarely in small bones of the hands and feet. We retrospectively examined the incidence of bone pain in patients followed at the Rabin Medical Center, Israel, before and following the initiation of enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) and evaluated them for bone crises. Of 100 type I Gaucher disease patients, 30 (30%) experienced one or more bone crises. Small bone crises represented 31.5% of all bone crises and were always preceded by crises in other bones. While the incidence of long bone crises reduced after the initiation of ERT, small bone crises increased. Almost 60% of patients with bone crises were of the N370S/84GG genotype suggesting a greater susceptibility of N370S/84GG patients to severe bone complications. These patients also underwent the greatest number of splenectomies (70.6% of splenectomised patients). Splenectomised patients showed a trend towards increased long and small bone crises after surgery. Active investigation of acute pain in the hands and feet in patients in our cohort has revealed a high incidence of small bone crises. Physicians should consider imaging studies to investigate unexplained pain in these areas.

  5. Passive tick surveillance, dog seropositivity, and incidence of human Lyme disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, J.L.; Ginsberg, H.S.; Zhioua, E.; Whitworth, U.G.; Markowski, D.; Hyland, K.E.; Hu, R.

    2004-01-01

    Data on nymphal Ixodes scapularis ticks submitted by the public to the University of Rhode Island Tick Research Laboratory for testing from 1991 to 2000 were compared with human case data from the Rhode Island Department of Health to determine the efficacy of passive tick surveillance at assessing human risk of Lyme disease. Numbers of ticks submitted were highly correlated with human cases by county (r = 0.998, n = 5 counties) and by town (r = 0.916, n = 37 towns), as were the numbers of positive ticks submitted (r = 0.989 by county, r = 0.787 by town). Human cases were correlated with ticks submitted by town each year, and with positive ticks in all but 2 years. Thus, passive tick surveillance effectively assessed geographical risk of human Lyme disease. In contrast, tick submissions through time were not correlated with human cases from year to year. Dog seropositivity was significantly correlated with human cases by county in both years tested, but by town in only one of two years. Numbers of ticks submitted were correlated with dog seropositivity by county but not by town, apparently because of high variability among towns with small sample sizes. Our results suggest that passive tick surveillance, using ticks submitted by the public for Lyme spirochete testing, can be used to assess the geographical distribution of Lyme disease risk, but cannot reliably predict Lyme incidence from year to year.

  6. Comparative analysis of protocadherin-11 X-linked expression among postnatal rodents, non-human primates, and songbirds suggests its possible involvement in brain evolution.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eiji Matsunaga

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Protocadherin-11 is a cell adhesion molecule of the cadherin superfamily. Since, only in humans, its paralog is found on the Y chromosome, it is expected that protocadherin-11X/Y plays some role in human brain evolution or sex differences. Recently, a genetic mutation of protocadherin-11X/Y was reported to be associated with a language development disorder. Here, we compared the expression of protocadherin-11 X-linked in developing postnatal brains of mouse (rodent and common marmoset (non-human primate to explore its possible involvement in mammalian brain evolution. We also investigated its expression in the Bengalese finch (songbird to explore a possible function in animal vocalization and human language faculties. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Protocadherin-11 X-linked was strongly expressed in the cerebral cortex, hippocampus, amygdala and brainstem. Comparative analysis between mice and marmosets revealed that in certain areas of marmoset brain, the expression was clearly enriched. In Bengalese finches, protocadherin-11 X-linked was expressed not only in nuclei of regions of the vocal production pathway and the tracheosyringeal hypoglossal nucleus, but also in areas homologous to the mammalian amygdala and hippocampus. In both marmosets and Bengalese finches, its expression in pallial vocal control areas was developmentally regulated, and no clear expression was seen in the dorsal striatum, indicating a similarity between songbirds and non-human primates. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results suggest that the enriched expression of protocadherin-11 X-linked is involved in primate brain evolution and that some similarity exists between songbirds and primates regarding the neural basis for vocalization.

  7. Why Right is Might: How the Social Science on Radicalisation suggests that International Human Rights Norms actually help frame Effective Counterterrorism Policies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tom Parker

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Many states appear to turn instinctively to hard power resources when confronted with a terrorist threat. Yet existing research on violent extremism and radicalisation leading to terrorism suggests that such responses might well exacerbate the problem. Terrorist groups actively seek to exploit the push-pull dynamic that drives radicalisation and violent extremism, while one case study after the other indicates that states thereby appear to play actively into their hands. Social science research suggests that international human rights norms assist compliant states to moderate responses, build legitimacy, and ultimately craft effective counterterrorism strategies. A close reading of the literature on radicalisation and terrorist group formation offers qualitative evidence to support this conclusion. 

  8. Interaction pattern of Arg 62 in the A-pocket of differentially disease-associated HLA-B27 subtypes suggests distinct TCR binding modes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisa Nurzia

    Full Text Available The single amino acid replacement Asp116His distinguishes the two subtypes HLA-B*2705 and HLA-B*2709 which are, respectively, associated and non-associated with Ankylosing Spondylitis, an autoimmune chronic inflammatory disease. The reason for this differential association is so far poorly understood and might be related to subtype-specific HLA:peptide conformations as well as to subtype/peptide-dependent dynamical properties on the nanoscale. Here, we combine functional experiments with extensive molecular dynamics simulations to investigate the molecular dynamics and function of the conserved Arg62 of the α1-helix for both B27 subtypes in complex with the self-peptides pVIPR (RRKWRRWHL and TIS (RRLPIFSRL, and the viral peptides pLMP2 (RRRWRRLTV and NPflu (SRYWAIRTR. Simulations of HLA:peptide systems suggest that peptide-stabilizing interactions of the Arg62 residue observed in crystal structures are metastable for both B27 subtypes under physiological conditions, rendering this arginine solvent-exposed and, probably, a key residue for TCR interaction more than peptide-binding. This view is supported by functional experiments with conservative (R62K and non-conservative (R62A B*2705 and B*2709 mutants that showed an overall reduction in their capability to present peptides to CD8+ T cells. Moreover, major subtype-dependent differences in the peptide recognition suggest distinct TCR binding modes for the B*2705 versus the B*2709 subtype.

  9. α-Synuclein Shows High Affinity Interaction with Voltage-dependent Anion Channel, Suggesting Mechanisms of Mitochondrial Regulation and Toxicity in Parkinson Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rostovtseva, Tatiana K; Gurnev, Philip A; Protchenko, Olga; Hoogerheide, David P; Yap, Thai Leong; Philpott, Caroline C; Lee, Jennifer C; Bezrukov, Sergey M

    2015-07-24

    Participation of the small, intrinsically disordered protein α-synuclein (α-syn) in Parkinson disease (PD) pathogenesis has been well documented. Although recent research demonstrates the involvement of α-syn in mitochondrial dysfunction in neurodegeneration and suggests direct interaction of α-syn with mitochondria, the molecular mechanism(s) of α-syn toxicity and its effect on neuronal mitochondria remain vague. Here we report that at nanomolar concentrations, α-syn reversibly blocks the voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC), the major channel of the mitochondrial outer membrane that controls most of the metabolite fluxes in and out of the mitochondria. Detailed analysis of the blockage kinetics of VDAC reconstituted into planar lipid membranes suggests that α-syn is able to translocate through the channel and thus target complexes of the mitochondrial respiratory chain in the inner mitochondrial membrane. Supporting our in vitro experiments, a yeast model of PD shows that α-syn toxicity in yeast depends on VDAC. The functional interactions between VDAC and α-syn, revealed by the present study, point toward the long sought after physiological and pathophysiological roles for monomeric α-syn in PD and in other α-synucleinopathies.

  10. Mutations in inhibin and activin genes associated with human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shelling, Andrew N

    2012-08-15

    Inhibins and activins are members of the transforming growth factor (TGFβ) superfamily, that includes the TGFβs, inhibins and activins, bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) and growth and differentiation factors (GDFs). The family members are expressed throughout the human body, and are involved in the regulation of a range of important functions. The precise regulation of the TGFβ pathways is critical, and mutations of individual molecules or even minor alterations of signalling will have a significant affect on function, that may lead to development of disease or predisposition to the development of disease. The inhibins and activins regulate aspects of the male and female reproductive system, therefore, it is not surprising that most of the diseases associated with abnormalities of the inhibin and activin genes are focused on reproductive disorders and reproductive cancers. In this review, I highlight the role of genetic variants in the development of conditions such as premature ovarian failure, pre-eclampsia, and various reproductive cancers. Given the recent advances in human genetic research, such as genome wide association studies and next generation sequencing, it is likely that inhibins and activins will be shown to play more important roles in a range of human genetic diseases in the future.

  11. Human anthrax as a re-emerging disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doganay, Mehmet; Demiraslan, Hayati

    2015-01-01

    Anthrax is primarily a disease of herbivores and the etiological agent is B. anthracis which is a gram-positive, aerobic, spore-forming, and rod shaped bacterium. Bacillus anthracis spores are highly resistant to heat, pressure, ultraviolet and ionizing radiation, chemical agents and disinfectants. For these reasons, B. anthracis spores are an attractive choice as biological agents for the use of bioweapon and/or bioterrorism. Soil is the main reservoir for the infectious agent. The disease most commonly affects wild and domestic mammals. Human are secondarily infected by contact with infected animals and contaminated animal products or directly expose to B. anthracis spores. Anthrax occurs worldwide. This infection is still endemic or hyperendemic in both animals and humans in some part of areas of the world; particularly in Middle East, West Africa, Central Asia, some part of India, South America. However, some countries are claiming free of anthrax, and anthrax has become a re-emerging disease in western countries with the intentional outbreak. Currently, anthrax is classified according to its setting as (1) naturally occurring anthrax, (2) bioterrorism-related anthrax. Vast majority of human anthrax are occurring as naturally occurring anthrax in the world. It is also a threaten disease for western countries. The aim of this paper is to review the relevant patents, short historical perspective, microbiological and epidemiological features, clinical presentations and treatment.

  12. Proteomics in farm animals models of human diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceciliani, Fabrizio; Restelli, Laura; Lecchi, Cristina

    2014-10-01

    The need to provide in vivo complex environments to understand human diseases strongly relies on the use of animal models, which traditionally include small rodents and rabbits. It is becoming increasingly evident that the few species utilised to date cannot be regarded as universal. There is a great need for new animal species that are naturally endowed with specific features relevant to human diseases. Farm animals, including pigs, cows, sheep and horses, represent a valid alternative to commonly utilised rodent models. There is an ample scope for the application of proteomic techniques in farm animals, and the establishment of several proteomic maps of plasma and tissue has clearly demonstrated that farm animals provide a disease environment that closely resembles that of human diseases. The present review offers a snapshot of how proteomic techniques have been applied to farm animals to improve their use as biomedical models. Focus will be on specific topics of biomedical research in which farm animal models have been characterised through the application of proteomic techniques.

  13. Noncommunicable diseases and human rights: a promising synergy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gruskin, Sofia; Ferguson, Laura; Tarantola, Daniel; Beaglehole, Robert

    2014-05-01

    Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) have finally emerged onto the global health and development agenda. Despite the increasingly important role human rights play in other areas of global health, their contribution to NCD prevention and control remains nascent. The recently adopted Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of NCDs 2013-2020 is an important step forward, but the lack of concrete attention to human rights is a missed opportunity. With practical implications for policy development, priority setting, and strategic design, human rights offer a logical, robust set of norms and standards; define the legal obligations of governments; and provide accountability mechanisms that can be used to enhance current approaches to NCD prevention and control. Harnessing the power of human rights can strengthen action for NCDs at the local, national, and global levels.

  14. Expression of the human TSPY gene in the brains of transgenic mice suggests a potential role of this Y chromosome gene in neural functions

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Tatsuo Kido; Stephanie Schubert; J(o)rg Schmidtke; Yun-Fai Chris Lau

    2011-01-01

    The testis specific protein Y-encoded (TSPY) is a member of TSPY/SET/NAPl superfamily, encoded within the gonadoblastoma locus on the Y chromosome. TSPY shares a highly conserved SET/NAP-domain responsible for protein-protein interaction among TSPY/SET/NAPl proteins.Accumulating data, so far, support the role of TSPY as the gonadoblastoma gene, involved in germ cell tumorigenesis. The X-chromosome homolog of TSPY, TSPX is expressed in various tissues at both fetal and adult stages, including the brain, and is capable of interacting with the multi-domain adapter protein CASK, thereby influencing the synaptic and transcriptional functions and developmental regulation of CASK in the brain and other neural tissues. Similar to TSPX, we demonstrated that TSPY could interact with CASK at its SET/NAP-domain in cultured cells. Transgenic mice harboring a human TSPY gene and flanking sequences showed specific expression of the human TSPYtransgene in both testis and brain. The neural expression pattern of the human TSPY gene overlapped with those of the endogenous mouse Cask and Tspx gene. Similarly with TSPX, TSPY was co-localized with CASK in neuronal axon fibers in the brain, suggesting a potential role(s) of TSPY in development and/or physiology of the nervous system.

  15. Brain expression genome-wide association study (eGWAS identifies human disease-associated variants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fanggeng Zou

    Full Text Available Genetic variants that modify brain gene expression may also influence risk for human diseases. We measured expression levels of 24,526 transcripts in brain samples from the cerebellum and temporal cortex of autopsied subjects with Alzheimer's disease (AD, cerebellar n=197, temporal cortex n=202 and with other brain pathologies (non-AD, cerebellar n=177, temporal cortex n=197. We conducted an expression genome-wide association study (eGWAS using 213,528 cisSNPs within ± 100 kb of the tested transcripts. We identified 2,980 cerebellar cisSNP/transcript level associations (2,596 unique cisSNPs significant in both ADs and non-ADs (q<0.05, p=7.70 × 10(-5-1.67 × 10(-82. Of these, 2,089 were also significant in the temporal cortex (p=1.85 × 10(-5-1.70 × 10(-141. The top cerebellar cisSNPs had 2.4-fold enrichment for human disease-associated variants (p<10(-6. We identified novel cisSNP/transcript associations for human disease-associated variants, including progressive supranuclear palsy SLCO1A2/rs11568563, Parkinson's disease (PD MMRN1/rs6532197, Paget's disease OPTN/rs1561570; and we confirmed others, including PD MAPT/rs242557, systemic lupus erythematosus and ulcerative colitis IRF5/rs4728142, and type 1 diabetes mellitus RPS26/rs1701704. In our eGWAS, there was 2.9-3.3 fold enrichment (p<10(-6 of significant cisSNPs with suggestive AD-risk association (p<10(-3 in the Alzheimer's Disease Genetics Consortium GWAS. These results demonstrate the significant contributions of genetic factors to human brain gene expression, which are reliably detected across different brain regions and pathologies. The significant enrichment of brain cisSNPs among disease-associated variants advocates gene expression changes as a mechanism for many central nervous system (CNS and non-CNS diseases. Combined assessment of expression and disease GWAS may provide complementary information in discovery of human disease variants with functional implications. Our findings

  16. Alternate-day fasting and chronic disease prevention: a review of human and animal trials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varady, Krista A; Hellerstein, Marc K

    2007-07-01

    Calorie restriction (CR) and alternate-day fasting (ADF) represent 2 different forms of dietary restriction. Although the effects of CR on chronic disease prevention were reviewed previously, the effects of ADF on chronic disease risk have yet to be summarized. Accordingly, we review here animal and human evidence concerning ADF and the risk of certain chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. We also compare the magnitude of risk reduction resulting from ADF with that resulting from CR. In terms of diabetes risk, animal studies of ADF find lower diabetes incidence and lower fasting glucose and insulin concentrations, effects that are comparable to those of CR. Human trials to date have reported greater insulin-mediated glucose uptake but no effect on fasting glucose or insulin concentrations. In terms of cardiovascular disease risk, animal ADF data show lower total cholesterol and triacylglycerol concentrations, a lower heart rate, improved cardiac response to myocardial infarction, and lower blood pressure. The limited human evidence suggests higher HDL-cholesterol concentrations and lower triacylglycerol concentrations but no effect on blood pressure. In terms of cancer risk, there is no human evidence to date, yet animal studies found decreases in lymphoma incidence, longer survival after tumor inoculation, and lower rates of proliferation of several cell types. The findings in animals suggest that ADF may effectively modulate several risk factors, thereby preventing chronic disease, and that ADF may modulate disease risk to an extent similar to that of CR. More research is required to establish definitively the consequences of ADF.

  17. Chronic Inflammatory Periodontal Disease in Patients with Human Immunodeficiency Virus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vania López Rodríguez

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Background: The Chronic Inflammatory Periodontal Disease is related with multiple risk factors. Those patients with human immunodeficiency virus have higher risk of presenting this disease and it is usually more serious in these cases. Objective: To describe the prevalence of Chronic Inflammatory Periodontal Disease in patients with HIV. Methods: Descriptive, observational, cross-sectional study including patients with HIV in Sancti Spiritus province. The occurrence of the disease was determined after the Periodontics Cuban Standards, and oral hygiene was assessed through the simplified oral hygiene index. Other variables were measured, such as smoking habits, T CD4+ lymphocyte counting and virus load. The independent association of each risk factor with the disease was determined through a logistic regression model. Results: The 56, 5 % of the 154 patients presented Chronic Inflammatory Periodontal Disease; 60 (39.0% gingivitis and 27 (17,5% periodontitis. Gingivitis was associated with poor oral hygiene (OR: 3,71 and periodontitis with smoking habit (OR: 5,20. The severe forms of periodontitis occurred mainly in patients with lymphocyte counting lower than 500 cells/mm3 . Conclusions: The prevalence of Chronic Inflammatory Periodontal Disease in patients with HIV in Sancti Spiritus province is linked to known risk factors such as smoking habits and oral hygiene.

  18. Impaired Binding of 14-3-3 to C-RAF in Noonan Syndrome Suggests New Approaches in Diseases with Increased Ras Signaling▿

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molzan, Manuela; Schumacher, Benjamin; Ottmann, Corinna; Baljuls, Angela; Polzien, Lisa; Weyand, Michael; Thiel, Philipp; Rose, Rolf; Rose, Micheline; Kuhenne, Philipp; Kaiser, Markus; Rapp, Ulf R.; Kuhlmann, Jürgen; Ottmann, Christian

    2010-01-01

    The Ras-RAF-mitogen-activated protein kinase (Ras-RAF-MAPK) pathway is overactive in many cancers and in some developmental disorders. In one of those disorders, namely, Noonan syndrome, nine activating C-RAF mutations cluster around Ser259, a regulatory site for inhibition by 14-3-3 proteins. We show that these mutations impair binding of 14-3-3 proteins to C-RAF and alter its subcellular localization by promoting Ras-mediated plasma membrane recruitment of C-RAF. By presenting biophysical binding data, the 14-3-3/C-RAFpS259 crystal structure, and cellular analyses, we indicate a mechanistic link between a well-described human developmental disorder and the impairment of a 14-3-3/target protein interaction. As a broader implication of these findings, modulating the C-RAFSer259/14-3-3 protein-protein interaction with a stabilizing small molecule may yield a novel potential approach for treatment of diseases resulting from an overactive Ras-RAF-MAPK pathway. PMID:20679480

  19. Impaired binding of 14-3-3 to C-RAF in Noonan syndrome suggests new approaches in diseases with increased Ras signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molzan, Manuela; Schumacher, Benjamin; Ottmann, Corinna; Baljuls, Angela; Polzien, Lisa; Weyand, Michael; Thiel, Philipp; Rose, Rolf; Rose, Micheline; Kuhenne, Philipp; Kaiser, Markus; Rapp, Ulf R; Kuhlmann, Jürgen; Ottmann, Christian

    2010-10-01

    The Ras-RAF-mitogen-activated protein kinase (Ras-RAF-MAPK) pathway is overactive in many cancers and in some developmental disorders. In one of those disorders, namely, Noonan syndrome, nine activating C-RAF mutations cluster around Ser(259), a regulatory site for inhibition by 14-3-3 proteins. We show that these mutations impair binding of 14-3-3 proteins to C-RAF and alter its subcellular localization by promoting Ras-mediated plasma membrane recruitment of C-RAF. By presenting biophysical binding data, the 14-3-3/C-RAFpS(259) crystal structure, and cellular analyses, we indicate a mechanistic link between a well-described human developmental disorder and the impairment of a 14-3-3/target protein interaction. As a broader implication of these findings, modulating the C-RAFSer(259)/14-3-3 protein-protein interaction with a stabilizing small molecule may yield a novel potential approach for treatment of diseases resulting from an overactive Ras-RAF-MAPK pathway.

  20. Downregulation of sulfotransferase expression and activity in diseased human livers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yalcin, Emine B; More, Vijay; Neira, Karissa L; Lu, Zhenqiang James; Cherrington, Nathan J; Slitt, Angela L; King, Roberta S

    2013-09-01

    Sulfotransferase (SULT) function has been well studied in healthy human subjects by quantifying mRNA and protein expression and determining enzyme activity with probe substrates. However, it is not well known if sulfotransferase activity changes in metabolic and liver disease, such as diabetes, steatosis, or cirrhosis. Sulfotransferases have significant roles in the regulation of hormones and excretion of xenobiotics. In the present study of normal subjects with nonfatty livers and patients with steatosis, diabetic cirrhosis, and alcoholic cirrhosis, we sought to determine SULT1A1, SULT2A1, SULT1E1, and SULT1A3 activity and mRNA and protein expression in human liver tissue. In general, sulfotransferase activity decreased significantly with severity of liver disease from steatosis to cirrhosis. Specifically, SULT1A1 and SULT1A3 activities were lower in disease states relative to nonfatty tissues. Alcoholic cirrhotic tissues further contained lower SULT1A1 and 1A3 activities than those affected by either of the two other disease states. SULT2A1, on the other hand, was only reduced in alcoholic cirrhotic tissues. SULT1E1 was reduced both in diabetic cirrhosis and in alcoholic cirrhosis tissues, relative to nonfatty liver tissues. In conclusion, the reduced levels of sulfotransferase expression and activity in diseased versus nondiseased liver tissue may alter the metabolism and disposition of xenobiotics and affect homeostasis of endobiotic sulfotransferase substrates.

  1. Credit scores, cardiovascular disease risk, and human capital.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Israel, Salomon; Caspi, Avshalom; Belsky, Daniel W; Harrington, HonaLee; Hogan, Sean; Houts, Renate; Ramrakha, Sandhya; Sanders, Seth; Poulton, Richie; Moffitt, Terrie E

    2014-12-02

    Credit scores are the most widely used instruments to assess whether or not a person is a financial risk. Credit scoring has been so successful that it has expanded beyond lending and into our everyday lives, even to inform how insurers evaluate our health. The pervasive application of credit scoring has outpaced knowledge about why credit scores are such useful indicators of individual behavior. Here we test if the same factors that lead to poor credit scores also lead to poor health. Following the Dunedin (New Zealand) Longitudinal Study cohort of 1,037 study members, we examined the association between credit scores and cardiovascular disease risk and the underlying factors that account for this association. We find that credit scores are negatively correlated with cardiovascular disease risk. Variation in household income was not sufficient to account for this association. Rather, individual differences in human capital factors—educational attainment, cognitive ability, and self-control—predicted both credit scores and cardiovascular disease risk and accounted for ∼45% of the correlation between credit scores and cardiovascular disease risk. Tracing human capital factors back to their childhood antecedents revealed that the characteristic attitudes, behaviors, and competencies children develop in their first decade of life account for a significant portion (∼22%) of the link between credit scores and cardiovascular disease risk at midlife. We discuss the implications of these findings for policy debates about data privacy, financial literacy, and early childhood interventions.

  2. Credit scores, cardiovascular disease risk, and human capital

    Science.gov (United States)

    Israel, Salomon; Caspi, Avshalom; Belsky, Daniel W.; Harrington, HonaLee; Hogan, Sean; Houts, Renate; Ramrakha, Sandhya; Sanders, Seth; Poulton, Richie; Moffitt, Terrie E.

    2014-01-01

    Credit scores are the most widely used instruments to assess whether or not a person is a financial risk. Credit scoring has been so successful that it has expanded beyond lending and into our everyday lives, even to inform how insurers evaluate our health. The pervasive application of credit scoring has outpaced knowledge about why credit scores are such useful indicators of individual behavior. Here we test if the same factors that lead to poor credit scores also lead to poor health. Following the Dunedin (New Zealand) Longitudinal Study cohort of 1,037 study members, we examined the association between credit scores and cardiovascular disease risk and the underlying factors that account for this association. We find that credit scores are negatively correlated with cardiovascular disease risk. Variation in household income was not sufficient to account for this association. Rather, individual differences in human capital factors—educational attainment, cognitive ability, and self-control—predicted both credit scores and cardiovascular disease risk and accounted for ∼45% of the correlation between credit scores and cardiovascular disease risk. Tracing human capital factors back to their childhood antecedents revealed that the characteristic attitudes, behaviors, and competencies children develop in their first decade of life account for a significant portion (∼22%) of the link between credit scores and cardiovascular disease risk at midlife. We discuss the implications of these findings for policy debates about data privacy, financial literacy, and early childhood interventions. PMID:25404329

  3. Functional Connectivity under Optogenetic Control Allows Modeling of Human Neuromuscular Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinbeck, Julius A; Jaiswal, Manoj K; Calder, Elizabeth L; Kishinevsky, Sarah; Weishaupt, Andreas; Toyka, Klaus V; Goldstein, Peter A; Studer, Lorenz

    2016-01-07

    Capturing the full potential of human pluripotent stem cell (PSC)-derived neurons in disease modeling and regenerative medicine requires analysis in complex functional systems. Here we establish optogenetic control in human PSC-derived spinal motorneurons and show that co-culture of these cells with human myoblast-derived skeletal muscle builds a functional all-human neuromuscular junction that can be triggered to twitch upon light stimulation. To model neuromuscular disease we incubated these co-cultures with IgG from myasthenia gravis patients and active complement. Myasthenia gravis is an autoimmune disorder that selectively targets neuromuscular junctions. We saw a reversible reduction in the amplitude of muscle contractions, representing a surrogate marker for the characteristic loss of muscle strength seen in this disease. The ability to recapitulate key aspects of disease pathology and its symptomatic treatment suggests that this neuromuscular junction assay has significant potential for modeling of neuromuscular disease and regeneration. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Lipidomics of human brain aging and Alzheimer's disease pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naudí, Alba; Cabré, Rosanna; Jové, Mariona; Ayala, Victoria; Gonzalo, Hugo; Portero-Otín, Manuel; Ferrer, Isidre; Pamplona, Reinald

    2015-01-01

    Lipids stimulated and favored the evolution of the brain. Adult human brain contains a large amount of lipids, and the largest diversity of lipid classes and lipid molecular species. Lipidomics is defined as "the full characterization of lipid molecular species and of their biological roles with respect to expression of proteins involved in lipid metabolism and function, including gene regulation." Therefore, the study of brain lipidomics can help to unravel the diversity and to disclose the specificity of these lipid traits and its alterations in neural (neurons and glial) cells, groups of neural cells, brain, and fluids such as cerebrospinal fluid and plasma, thus helping to uncover potential biomarkers of human brain aging and Alzheimer disease. This review will discuss the lipid composition of the adult human brain. We first consider a brief approach to lipid definition, classification, and tools for analysis from the new point of view that has emerged with lipidomics, and then turn to the lipid profiles in human brain and how lipids affect brain function. Finally, we focus on the current status of lipidomics findings in human brain aging and Alzheimer's disease pathology. Neurolipidomics will increase knowledge about physiological and pathological functions of brain cells and will place the concept of selective neuronal vulnerability in a lipid context. © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Pulmonary disease in patients with human immunodeficiency virus infection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lundgren, J D; Orholm, Marianne; Lundgren, B

    1989-01-01

    Pulmonary disease is the most important cause of morbidity and mortality in patients infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). All parts of the hospital system are expected to be involved in the diagnosis and treatment of HIV infected patients in the coming years. Many different processes...... cause pulmonary disease alone or in combination. Bilateral interstitial infiltrates are the most frequent chest x-ray abnormality and are most frequently caused by infection with Pneumocystis carinii. Cytomegalovirus, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, nonspecific interstitial pneumonitis and pulmonary Kaposi...

  6. Human lymphocyte antigens (HLA) and Graves' disease in Turkey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orhan, Y; Azezli, A; Carin, M; Aral, F; Sencer, E; Molvalilar, S

    1993-09-01

    To evaluate the association of HLA types with Turkish patients with Graves' disease, HLA typing, clinical findings, and thyroid antibodies were correlated. The HLA types, clinical findings (ophthalmopathy and age at onset), and thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) receptor (TRAb) and antithyroid microsomal antibodies (MAb) were analyzed. Seventy Turkish patients with Graves' disease and 306 control subjects were assessed. Serological HLA typing was performed in HLA A, B, C, DR, and DQ loci. There was a significantly increased prevalence of HLA B8, B49, DR3, DR4, and DR10 in Graves' disease. The association of Graves' disease with HLA DR3 was found to be less strong than previously described. The HLA DR4 antigen may contribute to the predisposition of Graves' disease in Turkey. The results suggest that HLA B7, B13, DR7, DQw2, and DQw3 may confer a protective effect for Graves' disease in Turkey. Patients carrying HLA B12, B18, and B44 haplotypes had a tendency to develop the disease at a later age. The difference from the other studies may be the result of the selection of the controls; in part, of the variability in serological typing reagents; and, also, of the rather weak HLA associations with the disease.

  7. Comparative analysis of mRNA targets for human PUF-family proteins suggests extensive interaction with the miRNA regulatory system.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessia Galgano

    Full Text Available Genome-wide identification of mRNAs regulated by RNA-binding proteins is crucial to uncover post-transcriptional gene regulatory systems. The conserved PUF family RNA-binding proteins repress gene expression post-transcriptionally by binding to sequence elements in 3'-UTRs of mRNAs. Despite their well-studied implications for development and neurogenesis in metazoa, the mammalian PUF family members are only poorly characterized and mRNA targets are largely unknown. We have systematically identified the mRNAs associated with the two human PUF proteins, PUM1 and PUM2, by the recovery of endogenously formed ribonucleoprotein complexes and the analysis of associated RNAs with DNA microarrays. A largely overlapping set comprised of hundreds of mRNAs were reproducibly associated with the paralogous PUM proteins, many of them encoding functionally related proteins. A characteristic PUF-binding motif was highly enriched among PUM bound messages and validated with RNA pull-down experiments. Moreover, PUF motifs as well as surrounding sequences exhibit higher conservation in PUM bound messages as opposed to transcripts that were not found to be associated, suggesting that PUM function may be modulated by other factors that bind conserved elements. Strikingly, we found that PUF motifs are enriched around predicted miRNA binding sites and that high-confidence miRNA binding sites are significantly enriched in the 3'-UTRs of experimentally determined PUM1 and PUM2 targets, strongly suggesting an interaction of human PUM proteins with the miRNA regulatory system. Our work suggests extensive connections between the RBP and miRNA post-transcriptional regulatory systems and provides a framework for deciphering the molecular mechanism by which PUF proteins regulate their target mRNAs.

  8. Comparative analysis of mRNA targets for human PUF-family proteins suggests extensive interaction with the miRNA regulatory system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galgano, Alessia; Forrer, Michael; Jaskiewicz, Lukasz; Kanitz, Alexander; Zavolan, Mihaela; Gerber, André P

    2008-09-08

    Genome-wide identification of mRNAs regulated by RNA-binding proteins is crucial to uncover post-transcriptional gene regulatory systems. The conserved PUF family RNA-binding proteins repress gene expression post-transcriptionally by binding to sequence elements in 3'-UTRs of mRNAs. Despite their well-studied implications for development and neurogenesis in metazoa, the mammalian PUF family members are only poorly characterized and mRNA targets are largely unknown. We have systematically identified the mRNAs associated with the two human PUF proteins, PUM1 and PUM2, by the recovery of endogenously formed ribonucleoprotein complexes and the analysis of associated RNAs with DNA microarrays. A largely overlapping set comprised of hundreds of mRNAs were reproducibly associated with the paralogous PUM proteins, many of them encoding functionally related proteins. A characteristic PUF-binding motif was highly enriched among PUM bound messages and validated with RNA pull-down experiments. Moreover, PUF motifs as well as surrounding sequences exhibit higher conservation in PUM bound messages as opposed to transcripts that were not found to be associated, suggesting that PUM function may be modulated by other factors that bind conserved elements. Strikingly, we found that PUF motifs are enriched around predicted miRNA binding sites and that high-confidence miRNA binding sites are significantly enriched in the 3'-UTRs of experimentally determined PUM1 and PUM2 targets, strongly suggesting an interaction of human PUM proteins with the miRNA regulatory system. Our work suggests extensive connections between the RBP and miRNA post-transcriptional regulatory systems and provides a framework for deciphering the molecular mechanism by which PUF proteins regulate their target mRNAs.

  9. Human genetic variation and the gut microbiome in disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Andrew Brantley; Tolonen, Andrew C; Xavier, Ramnik J

    2017-08-21

    Taxonomic and functional changes to the composition of the gut microbiome have been implicated in multiple human diseases. Recent microbiome genome-wide association studies reveal that variants in many human genes involved in immunity and gut architecture are associated with an altered composition of the gut microbiome. Although many factors can affect the microbial organisms residing in the gut, a number of recent findings support the hypothesis that certain host genetic variants predispose an individual towards microbiome dysbiosis. This condition, in which the normal microbiome population structure is disturbed, is a key feature in disorders of metabolism and immunity.

  10. Recent genetic discoveries implicating ion channels in human cardiovascular diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    George, Alfred L

    2014-04-01

    The term 'channelopathy' refers to human genetic disorders caused by mutations in genes encoding ion channels or their interacting proteins. Recent advances in this field have been enabled by next-generation DNA sequencing strategies such as whole exome sequencing with several intriguing and unexpected discoveries. This review highlights important discoveries implicating ion channels or ion channel modulators in cardiovascular disorders including cardiac arrhythmia susceptibility, cardiac conduction phenotypes, pulmonary and systemic hypertension. These recent discoveries further emphasize the importance of ion channels in the pathophysiology of human disease and as important druggable targets.

  11. Adult human metapneumonovirus (hMPV) pneumonia mimicking Legionnaire's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunha, Burke A; Irshad, Nadia; Connolly, James J

    2016-01-01

    In adults hospitalized with viral pneumonias the main differential diagnostic consideration is influenza pneumonia. The respiratory viruses causing viral influenza like illnesses (ILIs), e.g., RSV may closely resemble influenza. Rarely, extrapulmonary findings of some ILIs may resemble Legionnaire's disease (LD), e.g., adenovirus, human parainfluenza virus (HPIV-3). We present a most unusual case of human metapneumonovirus pneumonia (hMPV) with some characteristic extrapulmonary findings characteristic of LD, e.g., relative bradycardia, as well as mildly elevated serum transaminases and hyphosphatemia. We believe this is the first reported case of hMPV pneumonia in a hospitalized adult that had some features of LD.

  12. A novel porcine model of ataxia telangiectasia reproduces neurological features and motor deficits of human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beraldi, Rosanna; Chan, Chun-Hung; Rogers, Christopher S; Kovács, Attila D; Meyerholz, David K; Trantzas, Constantin; Lambertz, Allyn M; Darbro, Benjamin W; Weber, Krystal L; White, Katherine A M; Rheeden, Richard V; Kruer, Michael C; Dacken, Brian A; Wang, Xiao-Jun; Davis, Bryan T; Rohret, Judy A; Struzynski, Jason T; Rohret, Frank A; Weimer, Jill M; Pearce, David A

    2015-11-15

    Ataxia telangiectasia (AT) is a progressive multisystem disorder caused by mutations in the AT-mutated (ATM) gene. AT is a neurodegenerative disease primarily characterized by cerebellar degeneration in children leading to motor impairment. The disease progresses with other clinical manifestations including oculocutaneous telangiectasia, immune disorders, increased susceptibly to cancer and respiratory infections. Although genetic investigations and physiological models have established the linkage of ATM with AT onset, the mechanisms linking ATM to neurodegeneration remain undetermined, hindering therapeutic development. Several murine models of AT have been successfully generated showing some of the clinical manifestations of the disease, however they do not fully recapitulate the hallmark neurological phenotype, thus highlighting the need for a more suitable animal model. We engineered a novel porcine model of AT to better phenocopy the disease and bridge the gap between human and current animal models. The initial characterization of AT pigs revealed early cerebellar lesions including loss of Purkinje cells (PCs) and altered cytoarchitecture suggesting a developmental etiology for AT and could advocate for early therapies for AT patients. In addition, similar to patients, AT pigs show growth retardation and develop motor deficit phenotypes. By using the porcine system to model human AT, we established the first animal model showing PC loss and motor features of the human disease. The novel AT pig provides new opportunities to unmask functions and roles of ATM in AT disease and in physiological conditions.

  13. Cellular reprogramming for understanding and treating human disease.

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    Riya Rajan Kanherkar

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available In the last two decades we have witnessed a paradigm shift in our understanding of cells so radical that it has rewritten the rules of biology. The study of cellular reprogramming has gone from little more than a hypothesis, to applied bioengineering, with the creation of a variety of important cell types. By way of metaphor, we can compare the discovery of reprogramming with the archaeological discovery of the Rosetta stone. This stone slab made possible the initial decipherment of Egyptian hieroglyphics because it allowed us to see this language in a way that was previously impossible. We propose that cellular reprogramming will have an equally profound impact on understanding and curing human disease, because it allows us to perceive and study molecular biological processes such as differentiation, epigenetics, and chromatin in ways that were likewise previously impossible. Stem cells could be called cellular Rosetta stones because they allow also us to perceive the connections between development, disease, cancer, aging, and regeneration in novel ways. Here we present a comprehensive historical review of stem cells and cellular reprogramming, and illustrate the developing synergy between many previously unconnected fields. We show how stem cells can be used to create in vitro models of human disease and provide examples of how reprogramming is being used to study and treat such diverse diseases as cancer, aging and accelerated aging syndromes, infectious diseases such as AIDS, and epigenetic diseases such as polycystic ovary syndrome. While the technology of reprogramming is being developed and refined there have also been significant ongoing developments in other complementary technologies such as gene editing, progenitor cell production, and tissue engineering. These technologies are the foundations of what is becoming a fully-functional field of regenerative medicine and are converging to a point that will allow us to treat almost any

  14. Grape Polyphenols’ Effects in Human Cardiovascular Diseases and Diabetes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zuriñe Rasines-Perea

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The consumption of fruits and vegetables, as well as foods enriched in bioactive compounds and nutraceuticals, has increased due to consumers’ interest in the relevance of food composition for human health. Considerable recent interest has focused on bioactive phenolic compounds in grape, as they possess many biological activities, such as antioxidant, cardioprotective, anticancer, anti-inflammation, anti-ageing and antimicrobial properties. Observational studies indicate that the intake of polyphenol-rich foods improves vascular health, thereby significantly reducing the risk of hypertension, and cardiovascular disease (CVD. Other researchers have described the benefits of a grape polyphenol-rich diet for other types of maladies such as diabetes mellitus. This is a comprehensive review on the consumption of polyphenolic grape compounds, concerning their potential benefits for human health in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases and diabetes.

  15. Grape Polyphenols' Effects in Human Cardiovascular Diseases and Diabetes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasines-Perea, Zuriñe; Teissedre, Pierre-Louis

    2017-01-01

    The consumption of fruits and vegetables, as well as foods enriched in bioactive compounds and nutraceuticals, has increased due to consumers' interest in the relevance of food composition for human health. Considerable recent interest has focused on bioactive phenolic compounds in grape, as they possess many biological activities, such as antioxidant, cardioprotective, anticancer, anti-inflammation, anti-ageing and antimicrobial properties. Observational studies indicate that the intake of polyphenol-rich foods improves vascular health, thereby significantly reducing the risk of hypertension, and cardiovascular disease (CVD). Other researchers have described the benefits of a grape polyphenol-rich diet for other types of maladies such as diabetes mellitus. This is a comprehensive review on the consumption of polyphenolic grape compounds, concerning their potential benefits for human health in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases and diabetes.

  16. Mitochondrial protein import and human health and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacKenzie, James A; Payne, R Mark

    2007-05-01

    The targeting and assembly of nuclear-encoded mitochondrial proteins are essential processes because the energy supply of humans is dependent upon the proper functioning of mitochondria. Defective import of mitochondrial proteins can arise from mutations in the targeting signals within precursor proteins, from mutations that disrupt the proper functioning of the import machinery, or from deficiencies in the chaperones involved in the proper folding and assembly of proteins once they are imported. Defects in these steps of import have been shown to lead to oxidative stress, neurodegenerative diseases, and metabolic disorders. In addition, protein import into mitochondria has been found to be a dynamically regulated process that varies in response to conditions such as oxidative stress, aging, drug treatment, and exercise. This review focuses on how mitochondrial protein import affects human health and disease.

  17. Assessing the human gut microbiota in metabolic diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karlsson, Fredrik; Tremaroli, Valentina; Nielsen, Jens; Bäckhed, Fredrik

    2013-10-01

    Recent findings have demonstrated that the gut microbiome complements our human genome with at least 100-fold more genes. In contrast to our Homo sapiens-derived genes, the microbiome is much more plastic, and its composition changes with age and diet, among other factors. An altered gut microbiota has been associated with several diseases, including obesity and diabetes, but the mechanisms involved remain elusive. Here we discuss factors that affect the gut microbiome, how the gut microbiome may contribute to metabolic diseases, and how to study the gut microbiome. Next-generation sequencing and development of software packages have led to the development of large-scale sequencing efforts to catalog the human microbiome. Furthermore, the use of genetically engineered gnotobiotic mouse models may increase our understanding of mechanisms by which the gut microbiome modulates host metabolism. A combination of classical microbiology, sequencing, and animal experiments may provide further insights into how the gut microbiota affect host metabolism and physiology.

  18. Diagnosis of human heritable diseases--laboratory approaches and outcomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dowton, S B; Slaugh, R A

    1995-05-01

    Detection of mutant human genes is rapidly becoming an integral part of clinical practice. Human disease may arise by genetic deletion, insertion, fusion, point mutation, or amplification of unstable sequences. Such changes in structure may occur in germ cells or somatically. Rapid advances in understanding the complex nuclear and mitochondrial genomes necessitates deployment of a variety of methods to identify aberrant genes. These techniques include polymerase chain reaction, Southern transfer, and allele-specific hybridization studies, as well as methods to unmask mismatches between mutant and normal sequences. Development of protein truncation tests has added a vehicle for assessing larger DNA segments for mutations that cause premature translational termination. Linkage analysis remains an important tool where direct assay of disease-causing mutations is not possible. Considerations of confidentiality, informed consent, and insurability are important whenever genetic testing is used. These issues will assume increasing importance as presymptomatic testing for heritable predispositions emerges for common conditions.

  19. Disease Ontology 2015 update: an expanded and updated database of human diseases for linking biomedical knowledge through disease data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kibbe, Warren A; Arze, Cesar; Felix, Victor; Mitraka, Elvira; Bolton, Evan; Fu, Gang; Mungall, Christopher J; Binder, Janos X; Malone, James; Vasant, Drashtti; Parkinson, Helen; Schriml, Lynn M

    2015-01-01

    The current version of the Human Disease Ontology (DO) (http://www.disease-ontology.org) database expands the utility of the ontology for the examination and comparison of genetic variation, phenotype, protein, drug and epitope data through the lens of human disease. DO is a biomedical resource of standardized common and rare disease concepts with stable identifiers organized by disease etiology. The content of DO has had 192 revisions since 2012, including the addition of 760 terms. Thirty-two percent of all terms now include definitions. DO has expanded the number and diversity of research communities and community members by 50+ during the past two years. These community members actively submit term requests, coordinate biomedical resource disease representation and provide expert curation guidance. Since the DO 2012 NAR paper, there have been hundreds of term requests and a steady increase in the number of DO listserv members, twitter followers and DO website usage. DO is moving to a multi-editor model utilizing Protégé to curate DO in web ontology language. This will enable closer collaboration with the Human Phenotype Ontology, EBI's Ontology Working Group, Mouse Genome Informatics and the Monarch Initiative among others, and enhance DO's current asserted view and multiple inferred views through reasoning. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  20. Under the lash: Demodex mites in human diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacey, Noreen; Kavanagh, Kevin; Tseng, Scheffer C G

    2009-08-01

    Demodex mites, class Arachnida and subclass Acarina, are elongated mites with clear cephalothorax and abdomens, the former with four pairs of legs. There are more than 100 species of Demodex mite, many of which are obligatory commensals of the pilosebaceous unit of mammals including cats, dogs, sheep, cattle, pigs, goats, deer, bats, hamsters, rats and mice. Among them, Demodex canis, which is found ubiquitously in dogs, is the most documented and investigated. In excessive numbers D. canis causes the inflammatory disease termed demodicosis (demodectic mange, follicular mange or red mange), which is more common in purebred dogs and has a hereditary predisposition in breeding kennels1. Two distinct Demodex species have been confirmed as the most common ectoparasite in man. The larger Demodex folliculorum, about 0.3-0.4 mm long, is primarily found as a cluster in the hair follicle (Figure 1a), while the smaller Demodex brevis, about 0.2-0.3 mm long with a spindle shape and stubby legs, resides solitarily in the sebaceous gland (Figure 1b). These two species are also ubiquitously found in all human races without gender preference. The pathogenic role of Demodex mites in veterinary medicine is not as greatly disputed as in human diseases. In this article, we review the key literature and our joint research experience regarding the pathogenic potential of these two mites in causing inflammatory diseases of human skin and eye. We hope that the evidence summarized herein will invite readers to take a different look at the life of Demodex mites in several common human diseases.

  1. Does biodiversity protect humans against infectious disease? Reply

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, Chelsea L.; Lafferty, Kevin D.; DeLeo, Giulio; Young, Hillary S.; Hudson, Peter J.; Kuris, Armand M.

    2016-01-01

    The dilution effect is the sort of idea that everyone wants to be true. If nature protects humans against infectious disease, imagine the implications: nature's value could be tallied in terms of human suffering avoided. This makes a potent argument for conservation, convincing even to those who would otherwise be disinclined to support conservation initiatives. The appeal of the dilution effect has been recognized by others: “the desire to make the case for conservation has led to broad claims regarding the benefits of nature conservation for human health” (Bauch et al. 2015). Randolph and Dobson (2012) were among the first to critique these claims, making the case that promotion of conservation to reduce Lyme disease risk, although well intentioned, was flawed. Along with Randolph and Dobson's critique, there have been several calls for a more nuanced scientific assessment of the relationship between biodiversity and disease transmission (Dunn 2010, Salkeld et al. 2013, Wood and Lafferty 2013, Young et al. 2013). In response, supporters of the dilution effect have instead increased the scope of their generalizations with review papers, press releases, and, like Levi et al. (2015), letters. These responses have been successful; it is not uncommon to read papers that repeat the assertion that biodiversity generally interferes with disease transmission and that conservation will therefore generally benefit human health. Here, we explain how Levi et al. (2015) and other, similar commentaries use selective interpretation and shifting definitions to argue for the generality of the dilution effect hypothesis.

  2. Molecular basis of telomere dysfunction in human genetic diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarek, Grzegorz; Marzec, Paulina; Margalef, Pol; Boulton, Simon J

    2015-11-01

    Mutations in genes encoding proteins required for telomere structure, replication, repair and length maintenance are associated with several debilitating human genetic disorders. These complex telomere biology disorders (TBDs) give rise to critically short telomeres that affect the homeostasis of multiple organs. Furthermore, genome instability is often a hallmark of telomere syndromes, which are associated with increased cancer risk. Here, we summarize the molecular causes and cellular consequences of disease-causing mutations associated with telomere dysfunction.

  3. Molecular clocks and the human condition: approaching their characterization in human physiology and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fitzgerald, G A; Yang, G; Paschos, G K; Liang, X; Skarke, C

    2015-09-01

    Molecular clockworks knit together diverse biological networks and compelling evidence from model systems infers their importance in metabolism, immunological and cardiovascular function. Despite this and the diurnal variation in many aspects of human physiology and the phenotypic expression of disease, our understanding of the role and importance of clock function and dysfunction in humans is modest. There are tantalizing hints of connection across the translational divide and some correlative evidence of gene variation and human disease but most of what we know derives from forced desynchrony protocols in controlled environments. We now have the ability to monitor quantitatively ex vivo or in vivo the genome, metabolome, proteome and microbiome of humans in the wild. Combining this capability, with the power of mobile telephony and the evolution of remote sensing, affords a new opportunity for deep phenotyping, including the characterization of diurnal behaviour and the assessment of the impact of the clock on approved drug function.

  4. Human DNA methylomes of neurodegenerative diseases show common epigenomic patterns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanchez-Mut, J V; Heyn, H; Vidal, E; Moran, S; Sayols, S; Delgado-Morales, R; Schultz, M D; Ansoleaga, B; Garcia-Esparcia, P; Pons-Espinal, M; de Lagran, M M; Dopazo, J; Rabano, A; Avila, J; Dierssen, M; Lott, I; Ferrer, I; Ecker, J R; Esteller, M

    2016-01-01

    Different neurodegenerative disorders often show similar lesions, such as the presence of amyloid plaques, TAU-neurotangles and synuclein inclusions. The genetically inherited forms are rare, so we wondered whether shared epigenetic aberrations, such as those affecting DNA methylation, might also exist. The studied samples were gray matter samples from the prefrontal cortex of control and neurodegenerative disease-associated cases. We performed the DNA methylation analyses of Alzheimer's disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer-like neurodegenerative profile associated with Down's syndrome samples. The DNA methylation landscapes obtained show that neurodegenerative diseases share similar aberrant CpG methylation shifts targeting a defined gene set. Our findings suggest that neurodegenerative disorders might have similar pathogenetic mechanisms that subsequently evolve into different clinical entities. The identified aberrant DNA methylation changes can be used as biomarkers of the disorders and as potential new targets for the development of new therapies. PMID:26784972

  5. Identification of susceptibility genes and genetic modifiers of human diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abel, Kenneth; Kammerer, Stefan; Hoyal, Carolyn; Reneland, Rikard; Marnellos, George; Nelson, Matthew R.; Braun, Andreas

    2005-03-01

    The completion of the human genome sequence enables the discovery of genes involved in common human disorders. The successful identification of these genes is dependent on the availability of informative sample sets, validated marker panels, a high-throughput scoring technology, and a strategy for combining these resources. We have developed a universal platform technology based on mass spectrometry (MassARRAY) for analyzing nucleic acids with high precision and accuracy. To fuel this technology, we generated more than 100,000 validated assays for single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) covering virtually all known and predicted human genes. We also established a large DNA sample bank comprised of more than 50,000 consented healthy and diseased individuals. This combination of reagents and technology allows the execution of large-scale genome-wide association studies. Taking advantage of MassARRAY"s capability for quantitative analysis of nucleic acids, allele frequencies are estimated in sample pools containing large numbers of individual DNAs. To compare pools as a first-pass "filtering" step is a tremendous advantage in throughput and cost over individual genotyping. We employed this approach in numerous genome-wide, hypothesis-free searches to identify genes associated with common complex diseases, such as breast cancer, osteoporosis, and osteoarthritis, and genes involved in quantitative traits like high density lipoproteins cholesterol (HDL-c) levels and central fat. Access to additional well-characterized patient samples through collaborations allows us to conduct replication studies that validate true disease genes. These discoveries will expand our understanding of genetic disease predisposition, and our ability for early diagnosis and determination of specific disease subtype or progression stage.

  6. Forward-time simulations of human populations with complex diseases.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bo Peng

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available Due to the increasing power of personal computers, as well as the availability of flexible forward-time simulation programs like simuPOP, it is now possible to simulate the evolution of complex human diseases using a forward-time approach. This approach is potentially more powerful than the coalescent approach since it allows simulations of more than one disease susceptibility locus using almost arbitrary genetic and demographic models. However, the application of such simulations has been deterred by the lack of a suitable simulation framework. For example, it is not clear when and how to introduce disease mutants-especially those under purifying selection-to an evolving population, and how to control the disease allele frequencies at the last generation. In this paper, we introduce a forward-time simulation framework that allows us to generate large multi-generation populations with complex diseases caused by unlinked disease susceptibility loci, according to specified demographic and evolutionary properties. Unrelated individuals, small or large pedigrees can be drawn from the resulting population and provide samples for a wide range of study designs and ascertainment methods. We demonstrate our simulation framework using three examples that map genes associated with affection status, a quantitative trait, and the age of onset of a hypothetical cancer, respectively. Nonadditive fitness models, population structure, and gene-gene interactions are simulated. Case-control, sibpair, and large pedigree samples are drawn from the simulated populations and are examined by a variety of gene-mapping methods.

  7. Seasonality in human zoonotic enteric diseases: a systematic review.

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    Aparna Lal

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Although seasonality is a defining characteristic of many infectious diseases, few studies have described and compared seasonal patterns across diseases globally, impeding our understanding of putative mechanisms. Here, we review seasonal patterns across five enteric zoonotic diseases: campylobacteriosis, salmonellosis, vero-cytotoxigenic Escherichia coli (VTEC, cryptosporidiosis and giardiasis in the context of two primary drivers of seasonality: (i environmental effects on pathogen occurrence and pathogen-host associations and (ii population characteristics/behaviour. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We systematically reviewed published literature from 1960-2010, resulting in the review of 86 studies across the five diseases. The Gini coefficient compared temporal variations in incidence across diseases and the monthly seasonality index characterised timing of seasonal peaks. Consistent seasonal patterns across transnational boundaries, albeit with regional variations was observed. The bacterial diseases all had a distinct summer peak, with identical Gini values for campylobacteriosis and salmonellosis (0.22 and a higher index for VTEC (Gini  0.36. Cryptosporidiosis displayed a bi-modal peak with spring and summer highs and the most marked temporal variation (Gini = 0.39. Giardiasis showed a relatively small summer increase and was the least variable (Gini = 0.18. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Seasonal variation in enteric zoonotic diseases is ubiquitous, with regional variations highlighting complex environment-pathogen-host interactions. Results suggest that proximal environmental influences and host population dynamics, together with distal, longer-term climatic variability could have important direct and indirect consequences for future enteric disease risk. Additional understanding of the concerted influence of these factors on disease patterns may improve assessment and prediction of enteric disease burden in temperate

  8. Evaluation of the safety of ancient strains of wheat in coeliac disease reveals heterogeneous small intestinal T cell responses suggestive of coeliac toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Šuligoj, Tanja; Gregorini, Armando; Colomba, Mariastella; Ellis, H Julia; Ciclitira, Paul J

    2013-12-01

    Coeliac disease is a chronic small intestinal immune-mediated enteropathy triggered by dietary gluten in genetically predisposed individuals. Since it is unknown if all wheat varieties are equally toxic to coeliac patients seven Triticum accessions showing different origin (ancient/modern) and ploidy (di-, tetra- hexaploid) were studied. Selected strains of wheat were ancient Triticum monococcum precoce (AA genome) and Triticum speltoides (BB genome), accessions of Triticum turgidum durum (AABB genome) including two ancient (Graziella Ra and Kamut) and two modern (Senatore Cappelli and Svevo) durum strains of wheat and Triticum aestivum compactum (AABBDD genome). Small intestinal gluten-specific T-cell lines generated from 13 coeliac patients were tested with wheat accessions by proliferation assays. All strains of wheat independent of ploidy or ancient/modern origin triggered heterogeneous responses covering wide ranges of stimulation indices. Ancient strains of wheat, although previously suggested to be low or devoid of coeliac toxicity, should be tested for immunogenicity using gluten-specific T-cell lines from multiple coeliac patients rather than gluten-specific clones to assess their potential toxicity. Our findings provide further evidence for the need for a strict gluten-free diet in coeliac patients, including avoidance of ancient strains of wheat. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd and European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism. All rights reserved.

  9. Cardiac Disease Associated with Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloomfield, Gerald S; Leung, Claudia

    2017-02-01

    Over the last 2 decades human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection has become a chronic disease requiring long-term management. Aging, antiretroviral therapy, chronic inflammation, and several other factors contribute to the increased risk of cardiovascular disease in patients infected with HIV. In low-income and middle-income countries where antiretroviral therapy access is limited, cardiac disease is most commonly related to opportunistic infections and end-stage manifestations of HIV/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, including HIV-associated cardiomyopathy, pericarditis, and pulmonary arterial hypertension. Cardiovascular screening, prevention, and risk factor management are important factors in the management of patients infected with HIV worldwide. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. The human gut microbiome impacts health and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehrlich, Stanislav Dusko

    2016-01-01

    The human gut microbiome can now be characterized in unprecedented detail by an approach based on high-throughput sequencing of total stool DNA, that we name quantitative metagenomics. Central to the approach is a catalog that lists all the genes of intestinal microbes that are known - 9.9 millions, identified by the analysis of 1267 stool samples. Beyond the gene list, genetic units that carry them begun to be known; many of these correspond to bacterial species that were never isolated and cultured yet. Quantitative metagenomics allows developing powerful algorithms to diagnose a disease, monitor patients and identify individuals at risk to progress towards a disease. This lays ground for developing new approaches to better restore and even preserve the health by modulation of the altered microbiome, which contributes to promote or aggravate a disease.

  11. The vertical dispersión of Anopheles (Kerteszia cruzi in a forest in southern Brazil suggests that human cases of malaria of simian origin might be expected

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonidas M. Deane

    1984-12-01

    Full Text Available By staining females of Anopheles cruzi with fluorescent coloured powders in a forest in the State of Santa Catarina, we showed that they move from canopy to ground and vice-versa to feed. This suggests that in areas where this mosquito is a vector of human and simian malarias sporadic infections of man with monkey plasmodia might be expected.Pintando fêmeas de Anopheles cruzi com pós fluorescentes coloridos, numa floresta de Santa Catarina, mostramos que elas movimentam-se da copa ao solo e vice-versa para se alimentar de sangue. Isso sugere que em áreas onde esse mosquito for tansmissor das malárias humana e simiana pode-se esperar que ocorram infecções humanas esporádicas por plasmódios de macacos.

  12. DRUMS: a human disease related unique gene mutation search engine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Zuofeng; Liu, Xingnan; Wen, Jingran; Xu, Ye; Zhao, Xin; Li, Xuan; Liu, Lei; Zhang, Xiaoyan

    2011-10-01

    With the completion of the human genome project and the development of new methods for gene variant detection, the integration of mutation data and its phenotypic consequences has become more important than ever. Among all available resources, locus-specific databases (LSDBs) curate one or more specific genes' mutation data along with high-quality phenotypes. Although some genotype-phenotype data from LSDB have been integrated into central databases little effort has been made to integrate all these data by a search engine approach. In this work, we have developed disease related unique gene mutation search engine (DRUMS), a search engine for human disease related unique gene mutation as a convenient tool for biologists or physicians to retrieve gene variant and related phenotype information. Gene variant and phenotype information were stored in a gene-centred relational database. Moreover, the relationships between mutations and diseases were indexed by the uniform resource identifier from LSDB, or another central database. By querying DRUMS, users can access the most popular mutation databases under one interface. DRUMS could be treated as a domain specific search engine. By using web crawling, indexing, and searching technologies, it provides a competitively efficient interface for searching and retrieving mutation data and their relationships to diseases. The present system is freely accessible at http://www.scbit.org/glif/new/drums/index.html.

  13. Modelling of human low frequency sound localization acuity demonstrates dominance of spatial variation of interaural time difference and suggests uniform just-noticeable differences in interaural time difference.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosanna C G Smith

    Full Text Available Sound source localization is critical to animal survival and for identification of auditory objects. We investigated the acuity with which humans localize low frequency, pure tone sounds using timing differences between the ears. These small differences in time, known as interaural time differences or ITDs, are identified in a manner that allows localization acuity of around 1° at the midline. Acuity, a relative measure of localization ability, displays a non-linear variation as sound sources are positioned more laterally. All species studied localize sounds best at the midline and progressively worse as the sound is located out towards the side. To understand why sound localization displays this variation with azimuthal angle, we took a first-principles, systemic, analytical approach to model localization acuity. We calculated how ITDs vary with sound frequency, head size and sound source location for humans. This allowed us to model ITD variation for previously published experimental acuity data and determine the distribution of just-noticeable differences in ITD. Our results suggest that the best-fit model is one whereby just-noticeable differences in ITDs are identified with uniform or close to uniform sensitivity across the physiological range. We discuss how our results have several implications for neural ITD processing in different species as well as development of the auditory system.

  14. Structures of human Bruton's tyrosine kinase in active and inactive conformations suggest a mechanism of activation for TEC family kinases

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Marcotte, Douglas J.; Liu, Yu-Ting; Arduini, Robert M.; Hession, Catherine A.; Miatkowski, Konrad; Wildes, Craig P.; Cullen, Patrick F.; Hong, Victor; Hopkins, Brian T.; Mertsching, Elisabeth; Jenkins, Tracy J.; Romanowski, Michael J.; Baker, Darren P.; Silvian, Laura F. (Sunesis); (Biogen)

    2010-11-15

    Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK), a member of the TEC family of kinases, plays a crucial role in B-cell maturation and mast cell activation. Although the structures of the unphosphorylated mouse BTK kinase domain and the unphosphorylated and phosphorylated kinase domains of human ITK are known, understanding the kinase selectivity profiles of BTK inhibitors has been hampered by the lack of availability of a high resolution, ligand-bound BTK structure. Here, we report the crystal structures of the human BTK kinase domain bound to either Dasatinib (BMS-354825) at 1.9 {angstrom} resolution or to 4-amino-5-(4-phenoxyphenyl)-7H-pyrrolospyrimidin- 7-yl-cyclopentane at 1.6 {angstrom} resolution. This data provides information relevant to the development of small molecule inhibitors targeting BTK and the TEC family of nonreceptor tyrosine kinases. Analysis of the structural differences between the TEC and Src families of kinases near the Trp-Glu-Ile motif in the N-terminal region of the kinase domain suggests a mechanism of regulation of the TEC family members.

  15. Prioritizing Zoonotic Diseases: Differences in Perspectives Between Human and Animal Health Professionals in North America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ng, V; Sargeant, J M

    2016-05-01

    Zoonoses pose a significant burden of illness in North America. Zoonoses represent an additional threat to public health because the natural reservoirs are often animals, particularly wildlife, thus eluding control efforts such as quarantine, vaccination and social distancing. As there are limited resources available, it is necessary to prioritize diseases in order to allocate resources to those posing the greatest public health threat. Many studies have attempted to prioritize zoonoses, but challenges exist. This study uses a quantitative approach, conjoint analysis (CA), to overcome some limitations of traditional disease prioritization exercises. We used CA to conduct a zoonoses prioritization study involving a range of human and animal health professionals across North America; these included epidemiologists, public health practitioners, research scientists, physicians, veterinarians, laboratory technicians and nurses. A total of 699 human health professionals (HHP) and 585 animal health professionals (AHP) participated in this study. We used CA to prioritize 62 zoonotic diseases using 21 criteria. Our findings suggest CA can be used to produce reasonable criteria scores for disease prioritization. The fitted models were satisfactory for both groups with a slightly better fit for AHP compared to HHP (84.4% certainty fit versus 83.6%). Human-related criteria were more influential for HHP in their decision to prioritize zoonoses, while animal-related criteria were more influential for AHP resulting in different disease priority lists. While the differences were not statistically significant, a difference of one or two ranks could be considered important for some individuals. A potential solution to address the varying opinions is discussed. The scientific framework for disease prioritization presented can be revised on a regular basis by updating disease criteria to reflect diseases as they evolve over time; such a framework is of value allowing diseases of

  16. MORPHIN: a web tool for human disease research by projecting model organism biology onto a human integrated gene network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Sohyun; Kim, Eiru; Yang, Sunmo; Marcotte, Edward M; Lee, Insuk

    2014-07-01

    Despite recent advances in human genetics, model organisms are indispensable for human disease research. Most human disease pathways are evolutionally conserved among other species, where they may phenocopy the human condition or be associated with seemingly unrelated phenotypes. Much of the known gene-to-phenotype association information is distributed across diverse databases, growing rapidly due to new experimental techniques. Accessible bioinformatics tools will therefore facilitate translation of discoveries from model organisms into human disease biology. Here, we present a web-based discovery tool for human disease studies, MORPHIN (model organisms projected on a human integrated gene network), which prioritizes the most relevant human diseases for a given set of model organism genes, potentially highlighting new model systems for human diseases and providing context to model organism studies. Conceptually, MORPHIN investigates human diseases by an orthology-based projection of a set of model organism genes onto a genome-scale human gene network. MORPHIN then prioritizes human diseases by relevance to the projected model organism genes using two distinct methods: a conventional overlap-based gene set enrichment analysis and a network-based measure of closeness between the query and disease gene sets capable of detecting associations undetectable by the conventional overlap-based methods. MORPHIN is freely accessible at http://www.inetbio.org/morphin.

  17. Three-dimensional genome architecture influences partner selection for chromosomal translocations in human disease.

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    Jesse M Engreitz

    Full Text Available Chromosomal translocations are frequent features of cancer genomes that contribute to disease progression. These rearrangements result from formation and illegitimate repair of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs, a process that requires spatial colocalization of chromosomal breakpoints. The "contact first" hypothesis suggests that translocation partners colocalize in the nuclei of normal cells, prior to rearrangement. It is unclear, however, the extent to which spatial interactions based on three-dimensional genome architecture contribute to chromosomal rearrangements in human disease. Here we intersect Hi-C maps of three-dimensional chromosome conformation with collections of 1,533 chromosomal translocations from cancer and germline genomes. We show that many translocation-prone pairs of regions genome-wide, including the cancer translocation partners BCR-ABL and MYC-IGH, display elevated Hi-C contact frequencies in normal human cells. Considering tissue specificity, we find that translocation breakpoints reported in human hematologic malignancies have higher Hi-C contact frequencies in lymphoid cells than those reported in sarcomas and epithelial tumors. However, translocations from multiple tissue types show significant correlation with Hi-C contact frequencies, suggesting that both tissue-specific and universal features of chromatin structure contribute to chromosomal alterations. Our results demonstrate that three-dimensional genome architecture shapes the landscape of rearrangements directly observed in human disease and establish Hi-C as a key method for dissecting these effects.

  18. Possible roles of transglutaminases in molecular mechanisms responsible for human neurodegenerative diseases

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    Nicola Gaetano Gatta

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Transglutaminases are a family of Ca2+-dependent enzymes which catalyze post-translational modifications of proteins. The main activity of these enzymes is the cross-linking of glutaminyl residues of a protein/peptide substrate to lysyl residues of a protein/peptide co-substrate. In addition to lysyl residues, other second nucleophilic co-substrates may include monoamines or polyamines (to form mono- or bi-substituted/crosslinked adducts or –OH groups (to form ester linkages. In absence of co-substrates, the nucleophile may be water, resulting in the net deamidation of the glutaminyl residue. Transglutaminase activity has been suggested to be involved in molecular mechanisms responsible for both physiological or pathological processes. In particular, transglutaminase activity has been shown to be responsible for human autoimmune diseases, Celiac Disease is just one of them. Interestingly, neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, supranuclear palsy, Huntington’s Disease and other polyglutamine diseases, are characterized in part by aberrant cerebral transglutaminase activity and by increased cross-linked proteins in affected brains. This review describes the possible molecular mechanisms by which these enzymes could be responsible for such diseases and the possible use of transglutaminase inhibitors for patients with diseases characterized by aberrant transglutaminase activity.

  19. Analysis of Immune Response Markers in Jorge Lobo's Disease Lesions Suggests the Occurrence of Mixed T Helper Responses with the Dominance of Regulatory T Cell Activity

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    Azevedo, Michelle de C. S.; Rosa, Patricia S.; Soares, Cleverson T.; Fachin, Luciana R. V.; Baptista, Ida Maria F. D.; Woods, William J.; Garlet, Gustavo P.

    2015-01-01

    Jorge Lobo’s disease (JLD) is a chronic infection that affects the skin and subcutaneous tissues. Its etiologic agent is the fungus Lacazia loboi. Lesions are classified as localized, multifocal, or disseminated, depending on their location. Early diagnosis and the surgical removal of lesions are the best therapeutic options currently available for JLD. The few studies that evaluate the immunological response of JLD patients show a predominance of Th2 response, as well as a high frequency of TGF-β and IL-10 positive cells in the lesions; however, the overall immunological status of the lesions in terms of their T cell phenotype has yet to be determined. Therefore, the objective of this study was to evaluate the pattern of Th1, Th2, Th17 and regulatory T cell (Treg) markers mRNA in JLD patients by means of real-time PCR. Biopsies of JLD lesions (N = 102) were classified according to their clinical and histopathological features and then analyzed using real-time PCR in order to determine the expression levels of TGF-β1, FoxP3, CTLA4, IKZF2, IL-10, T-bet, IFN-γ, GATA3, IL-4, IL-5, IL-13, IL-33, RORC, IL-17A, IL-17F, and IL-22 and to compare these levels to those of healthy control skin (N = 12). The results showed an increased expression of FoxP3, CTLA4, TGF-β1, IL-10, T-bet, IL-17F, and IL-17A in lesions, while GATA3 and IL-4 levels were found to be lower in diseased skin than in the control group. When the clinical forms were compared, TGF-β1 was found to be highly expressed in patients with a single localized lesion while IL-5 and IL-17A levels were higher in patients with multiple/disseminated lesions. These results demonstrate the occurrence of mixed T helper responses and suggest the dominance of regulatory T cell activity, which could inhibit Th-dependent protective responses to intracellular fungi such as L. loboi. Therefore, Tregs may play a key role in JLD pathogenesis. PMID:26700881

  20. ApolipoproteinE ε4 allelic variant, cognitive decline and psychosis in Alzheimer disease: a review of the literature and suggestions for upcoming studies

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    Ilaria Spoletini

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Apolipoprotein E (ApoE ε4 allele represents a well known vascular risk factor for developing Alzheimer disease (AD and differences in ApoE genotypes may explain a part of the variability in AD phenotypes. In fact, ApoE ε4 allele possession seems to be associated with a more precocious age of onset, greater episodic memory impairment, and psychotic symptoms. The first question we discuss regards the role of ApoE ε4 on cognitive progression of AD. In fact, while a general agreement exists about the role played by ApoE ε4 on the precocious onset of AD, cognitive decline has been differently associated with ApoE ε4 allele possession in AD patients in a continuum of faster decline, no effect, and slower decline. An attemptable interpretation is that the biological processes leading to the onset of AD are different from those involved in determining its clinical course. The second question regards the possible relationship between the presence of the degenerative pathological hallmarks of the disease in specific cerebral areas and different cognitive or behavioural symptoms. In fact, there is evidence that degenerative pathology in hippocampal formation and frontal cortex reflects the progression of cognitive deficits in brain aging and AD and that hypometabolism in right frontal lobe and greater frontal neuropsychological deficits occur in AD patients with psychosis in comparison to those without. The third question regards, specifically, the relationship between ApoE ε4 variant and behavioural symptoms. In fact, there is evidence supporting the link between being carriers of ApoE ε4 allele and severity of delusions, mostly at the early stage of the illness. In an interpretative challenge, we suggest that the link between being carriers of ApoE ε4 allele and suffering from delusions in AD may be explained by frontal lobe dysfunctions. Finally, we hypothesize that the most precocious onset of AD illness, described in carriers of ApoE ε4

  1. Mutant Huntingtin Does Not Affect the Intrinsic Phenotype of Human Huntington's Disease T Lymphocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, James R C; Träger, Ulrike; Andre, Ralph; Tabrizi, Sarah J

    2015-01-01

    Huntington's disease is a fatal neurodegenerative condition caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin gene. The peripheral innate immune system is dysregulated in Huntington's disease and may contribute to its pathogenesis. However, it is not clear whether or to what extent the adaptive immune system is also involved. Here, we carry out the first comprehensive investigation of human ex vivo T lymphocytes in Huntington's disease, focusing on the frequency of a range of T lymphocyte subsets, as well as analysis of proliferation, cytokine production and gene transcription. In contrast to the innate immune system, the intrinsic phenotype of T lymphocytes does not appear to be affected by the presence of mutant huntingtin, with Huntington's disease T lymphocytes exhibiting no significant functional differences compared to control cells. The transcriptional profile of T lymphocytes also does not appear to be significantly affected, suggesting that peripheral immune dysfunction in Huntington's disease is likely to be mediated primarily by the innate rather than the adaptive immune system. This study increases our understanding of the effects of Huntington's disease on peripheral tissues, while further demonstrating the differential effects of the mutant protein on different but related cell types. Finally, this study suggests that the potential use of novel therapeutics aimed at modulating the Huntington's disease innate immune system should not be extended to include the adaptive immune system.

  2. Mutant Huntingtin Does Not Affect the Intrinsic Phenotype of Human Huntington's Disease T Lymphocytes.

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    James R C Miller

    Full Text Available Huntington's disease is a fatal neurodegenerative condition caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin gene. The peripheral innate immune system is dysregulated in Huntington's disease and may contribute to its pathogenesis. However, it is not clear whether or to what extent the adaptive immune system is also involved. Here, we carry out the first comprehensive investigation of human ex vivo T lymphocytes in Huntington's disease, focusing on the frequency of a range of T lymphocyte subsets, as well as analysis of proliferation, cytokine production and gene transcription. In contrast to the innate immune system, the intrinsic phenotype of T lymphocytes does not appear to be affected by the presence of mutant huntingtin, with Huntington's disease T lymphocytes exhibiting no significant functional differences compared to control cells. The transcriptional profile of T lymphocytes also does not appear to be significantly affected, suggesting that peripheral immune dysfunction in Huntington's disease is likely to be mediated primarily by the innate rather than the adaptive immune system. This study increases our understanding of the effects of Huntington's disease on peripheral tissues, while further demonstrating the differential effects of the mutant protein on different but related cell types. Finally, this study suggests that the potential use of novel therapeutics aimed at modulating the Huntington's disease innate immune system should not be extended to include the adaptive immune system.

  3. A knowledge based approach to matching human neurodegenerative disease and animal models

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    Maryann E Martone

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Neurodegenerative diseases present a wide and complex range of biological and clinical features. Animal models are key to translational research, yet typically only exhibit a subset of disease features rather than being precise replicas of the disease. Consequently, connecting animal to human conditions using direct data-mining strategies has proven challenging, particularly for diseases of the nervous system, with its complicated anatomy and physiology. To address this challenge we have explored the use of ontologies to create formal descriptions of structural phenotypes across scales that are machine processable and amenable to logical inference. As proof of concept, we built a Neurodegenerative Disease Phenotype Ontology and an associated Phenotype Knowledge Base using an entity-quality model that incorporates descriptions for both human disease phenotypes and those of animal models. Entities are drawn from community ontologies made available through the Neuroscience Information Framework and qualities are drawn from the Phenotype and Trait Ontology. We generated ~1200 structured phenotype statements describing structural alterations at the subcellular, cellular and gross anatomical levels observed in 11 human neurodegenerative conditions and associated animal models. PhenoSim, an open source tool for comparing phenotypes, was used to issue a series of competency questions to compare individual phenotypes among organisms and to determine which animal models recapitulate phenotypic aspects of the human disease in aggregate. Overall, the system was able to use relationships within the ontology to bridge phenotypes across scales, returning non-trivial matches based on common subsumers that were meaningful to a neuroscientist with an advanced knowledge of neuroanatomy. The system can be used both to compare individual phenotypes and also phenotypes in aggregate. This proof of concept suggests that expressing complex phenotypes using formal

  4. A knowledge based approach to matching human neurodegenerative disease and animal models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maynard, Sarah M.; Mungall, Christopher J.; Lewis, Suzanna E.; Imam, Fahim T.; Martone, Maryann E.

    2013-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases present a wide and complex range of biological and clinical features. Animal models are key to translational research, yet typically only exhibit a subset of disease features rather than being precise replicas of the disease. Consequently, connecting animal to human conditions using direct data-mining strategies has proven challenging, particularly for diseases of the nervous system, with its complicated anatomy and physiology. To address this challenge we have explored the use of ontologies to create formal descriptions of structural phenotypes across scales that are machine processable and amenable to logical inference. As proof of concept, we built a Neurodegenerative Disease Phenotype Ontology (NDPO) and an associated Phenotype Knowledge Base (PKB) using an entity-quality model that incorporates descriptions for both human disease phenotypes and those of animal models. Entities are drawn from community ontologies made available through the Neuroscience Information Framework (NIF) and qualities are drawn from the Phenotype and Trait Ontology (PATO). We generated ~1200 structured phenotype statements describing structural alterations at the subcellular, cellular and gross anatomical levels observed in 11 human neurodegenerative conditions and associated animal models. PhenoSim, an open source tool for comparing phenotypes, was used to issue a series of competency questions to compare individual phenotypes among organisms and to determine which animal models recapitulate phenotypic aspects of the human disease in aggregate. Overall, the system was able to use relationships within the ontology to bridge phenotypes across scales, returning non-trivial matches based on common subsumers that were meaningful to a neuroscientist with an advanced knowledge of neuroanatomy. The system can be used both to compare individual phenotypes and also phenotypes in aggregate. This proof of concept suggests that expressing complex phenotypes using formal

  5. Functions of NOD-like receptors (NLRs in human diseases

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    Yifei eZhong

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Nucleotide-binding and oligomerization domain (NOD-like receptors (NLRs are highly conserved cytosolic pattern recognition receptors that perform critical functions in surveying the intracellular environment for the presence of infection, noxious substances, and metabolic perturbations. Sensing of these danger signals by NLRs leads to their oligomerization into large macromolecular scaffolds and the rapid deployment of effector signaling cascades to restore homeostasis. While some NLRs operate by recruiting and activating inflammatory caspases into inflammasomes, others trigger inflammation via alternative routes including the NF-κB, MAPK and IRF pathways. The critical role of NLRs in development and physiology is demonstrated by their clear implications in human diseases. Mutations in the genes encoding NLRP3 or NLRP12 lead to hereditary periodic fever syndromes, while mutations in CARD15 that encodes NOD2 are linked to Crohn’s disease or Blau’s syndrome. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS have identified a number of risk alleles encompassing NLR genes in a host of diseases including allergic rhinitis, multiple sclerosis, inflammatory bowel disease, asthma, multi-bacillary leprosy, vitiligo, early-onset menopause, and bone density loss in elderly women. Animal models have allowed the characterization of underlying effector mechanisms in a number of cases. In this review, we highlight the functions of NLRs in health and disease and discuss how the characterization of their molecular mechanisms provides new insights into therapeutic strategies for the management of inflammatory pathologies.

  6. Linfogranuloma venério: aumento na incidência sugere surto mundial da doença Lymphogranuloma venereum: increased incidence suggests diseases world outbreak

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    Bruno de Lucia Hernani

    2007-06-01

    , this disease has been notified by other European countries, North America and Australia. This increased incidence seems like an outbreak and common features in these reports were: MSM, Caucasian race / ethnicity, mean age above 35 years, predominantly (>70% co-infected with HIV. Complaints included anorectal pain, tenesmus and constipation. After these reports, many countries started doing active research in their people. The lack of a specific diagnostic test has complicated LGV case ascertainment. In the absence of laboratory confirmation of L serovars, patients with symptoms suggestive of LGV should be presumptively treated with antibacterial therapy for 3 weeks. If routine LGV serovar typing is unavailable, most authors proposed administration of syndromic LGV treatment for MSM with anorectal chlamydia and either proctitis detected by proctoscopic examination, more than 10 white blood cells/high-power field detected on an anorectal smear specimen, or HIV seropositivity. We believed the incidence of LGV is also increasing in Brazil, and new cases are not being diagnosed because the ignorance about this world outbreak. We suggest that anal ulcer or proctitis in anal sex practitioners must have a high suspicious of LGV infection.

  7. Validation of the Multiple Suggested Immobilization Test: A Test for the Assessment of Severity of Restless Legs Syndrome (Willis-Ekbom Disease).

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    Garcia-Borreguero, Diego; Kohnen, Ralf; Boothby, Lindsay; Tzonova, Desislava; Larrosa, Oscar; Dunkl, Elmar

    2013-07-01

    To validate the Multiple Suggested Immobilization Test (m-SIT), a symptom-provocation test measuring restless legs syndrome (RLS) severity multiple times a day while the patient is awake and resting under controlled conditions. The m-SIT was designed to overcome some limitations in measuring RLS severity with rating scales. Patients completed two m-SITs on 2 consecutive days while on 24-h dopaminergic medication. After treatment discontinuation, they completed one more m-SIT 3 days later. Controls performed only one m-SIT. Sleep laboratory. Nineteen patients with RLS and 10 healthy controls. The original m-SIT consisted of seven modified 60-min SITs performed every 2 h between noon and midnight. During each SIT, the subject reclined quietly but could move his or her legs without restriction to alleviate symptoms. Every 10 min, periodic leg movements during wakefulness (PLMW) were evaluated and the m-SIT Disturbance Scale (m-SIT-DS; range 0-10) was completed. The m-SIT, composed of 6:00pm, 8:00pm, 10:00pm, and 12:00pm SITs, discriminated patients from controls (mean m-SIT-DS: 2.68 ± 2.35 versus 0.08 ± 0.26; mean PLMW/h, P = 0.0001) and between treatment groups (on medication versus taken off medication; mean m-SIT-DS, P = 0.0001; mean PLMW/h, P 0.4). The m-SIT is a valid and reliable test to evaluate RLS severity and treatment response, and could be useful in the future to confirm diagnosis and identify daytime symptoms. Although it was primarily designed for clinical trials, it might be useful in clinical settings because it provides a standardized testing condition to measure RLS symptoms. Garcia-Borreguero D; Kohnen R; Boothby L; Tzonova D; Larrosa O; Dunkl E. Validation of the Multiple Suggested Immobilization Test: a test for the assessment of severity of restless legs syndrome (Willis-Ekbom disease). SLEEP 2013;36(7):1101-1109.

  8. Diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease based on disease-specific autoantibody profiles in human sera.

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    Eric Nagele

    Full Text Available After decades of Alzheimer's disease (AD research, the development of a definitive diagnostic test for this disease has remained elusive. The discovery of blood-borne biomarkers yielding an accurate and relatively non-invasive test has been a primary goal. Using human protein microarrays to characterize the differential expression of serum autoantibodies in AD and non-demented control (NDC groups, we identified potential diagnostic biomarkers for AD. The differential significance of each biomarker was evaluated, resulting in the selection of only 10 autoantibody biomarkers that can effectively differentiate AD sera from NDC sera with a sensitivity of 96.0% and specificity of 92.5%. AD sera were also distinguishable from sera obtained from patients with Parkinson's disease and breast cancer with accuracies of 86% and 92%, respectively. Results demonstrate that serum autoantibodies can be used effectively as highly-specific and accurate biomarkers to diagnose AD throughout the course of the disease.

  9. Human Gut Microbiota: Toward an Ecology of Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selber-Hnatiw, Susannah; Rukundo, Belise; Ahmadi, Masoumeh; Akoubi, Hayfa; Al-Bizri, Hend; Aliu, Adelekan F.; Ambeaghen, Tanyi U.; Avetisyan, Lilit; Bahar, Irmak; Baird, Alexandra; Begum, Fatema; Ben Soussan, Hélène; Blondeau-Éthier, Virginie; Bordaries, Roxane; Bramwell, Helene; Briggs, Alicia; Bui, Richard; Carnevale, Matthew; Chancharoen, Marisa; Chevassus, Talia; Choi, Jin H.; Coulombe, Karyne; Couvrette, Florence; D'Abreau, Samantha; Davies, Meghan; Desbiens, Marie-Pier; Di Maulo, Tamara; Di Paolo, Sean-Anthony; Do Ponte, Sabrina; dos Santos Ribeiro, Priscyla; Dubuc-Kanary, Laure-Anne; Duncan, Paola K.; Dupuis, Frédérique; El-Nounou, Sara; Eyangos, Christina N.; Ferguson, Natasha K.; Flores-Chinchilla, Nancy R.; Fotakis, Tanya; Gado Oumarou H D, Mariam; Georgiev, Metodi; Ghiassy, Seyedehnazanin; Glibetic, Natalija; Grégoire Bouchard, Julien; Hassan, Tazkia; Huseen, Iman; Ibuna Quilatan, Marlon-Francis; Iozzo, Tania; Islam, Safina; Jaunky, Dilan B.; Jeyasegaram, Aniththa; Johnston, Marc-André; Kahler, Matthew R.; Kaler, Kiranpreet; Kamani, Cedric; Karimian Rad, Hessam; Konidis, Elisavet; Konieczny, Filip; Kurianowicz, Sandra; Lamothe, Philippe; Legros, Karina; Leroux, Sebastien; Li, Jun; Lozano Rodriguez, Monica E.; Luponio-Yoffe, Sean; Maalouf, Yara; Mantha, Jessica; McCormick, Melissa; Mondragon, Pamela; Narayana, Thivaedee; Neretin, Elizaveta; Nguyen, Thi T. T.; Niu, Ian; Nkemazem, Romeo B.; O'Donovan, Martin; Oueis, Matthew; Paquette, Stevens; Patel, Nehal; Pecsi, Emily; Peters, Jackie; Pettorelli, Annie; Poirier, Cassandra; Pompa, Victoria R.; Rajen, Harshvardhan; Ralph, Reginald-Olivier; Rosales-Vasquez, Josué; Rubinshtein, Daria; Sakr, Surya; Sebai, Mohammad S.; Serravalle, Lisa; Sidibe, Fily; Sinnathurai, Ahnjana; Soho, Dominique; Sundarakrishnan, Adithi; Svistkova, Veronika; Ugbeye, Tsolaye E.; Vasconcelos, Megan S.; Vincelli, Michael; Voitovich, Olga; Vrabel, Pamela; Wang, Lu; Wasfi, Maryse; Zha, Cong Y.; Gamberi, Chiara

    2017-01-01

    Composed of trillions of individual microbes, the human gut microbiota has adapted to the uniquely diverse environments found in the human intestine. Quickly responding to the variances in the ingested food, the microbiota interacts with the host via reciprocal biochemical signaling to coordinate the exchange of nutrients and proper immune function. Host and microbiota function as a unit which guards its balance against invasion by potential pathogens and which undergoes natural selection. Disturbance of the microbiota composition, or dysbiosis, is often associated with human disease, indicating that, while there seems to be no unique optimal composition of the gut microbiota, a balanced community is crucial for human health. Emerging knowledge of the ecology of the microbiota-host synergy will have an impact on how we implement antibiotic treatment in therapeutics and prophylaxis and how we will consider alternative strategies of global remodeling of the microbiota such as fecal transplants. Here we examine the microbiota-human host relationship from the perspective of the microbial community dynamics. PMID:28769880

  10. Investigation and Suggestion for Sugarcane Ratoon Stunting Disease in Yingjiang County%盈江县甘蔗宿根矮化病的调查与思考

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张天富; 许庆龙; 梁昌新; 张加江; 刀荣威

    2014-01-01

    通过对盈江县甘蔗宿根矮化病(RSD)的调查、检测,结果显示,RSD占80%;对2012年温水脱毒健康种苗进行田间测产,与未脱毒甘蔗的产量比较增34.995 t/hm2,增产率36%,说明RSD在盈江县蔗区普遍发生,但通过培育和推广应用甘蔗健康种苗,不仅可有效控治甘蔗宿根矮化病的蔓延,而且增产效果明显。本文结合盈江县甘蔗发展实际情况,针对当前存在的问题,提出下一步防治甘蔗宿根矮化病的防治对策。%The investigation and detection of Ratoon Stunting Disease (RSD) of ratoon sugarcane in Yingjiang County showed that 80% of the total have RSD. The cane yield cultivating virus-free seedling treated with warm water was 34.995 t/hm2 (an increase rate of 36%) higher than that using non virus-free seedling. The result indicated that RSD is widespread in sugarcane planting areas of Yingjiang, but can be controlled by the promotion of growing healthy seedling, increasing cane yield significantly. The suggestion on the countermeasures of RSD control is offered combined with the actual development of sugarcane industry in Yingjiang according to the current problems.

  11. A large survey among European trainees in clinical microbiology and infectious disease on training systems and training adequacy: identifying the gaps and suggesting improvements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yusuf, E; Ong, D S Y; Martin-Quiros, A; Skevaki, C; Cortez, J; Dedić, K; Maraolo, A E; Dušek, D; Maver, P J; Sanguinetti, M; Tacconelli, E

    2017-02-01

    The purpose of this investigation was to perform a survey among European clinical microbiology (CM) and infectious disease (ID) trainees on training satisfaction, training tools, and competency assessment. An online, anonymous survey in the English language was carried out between April and July 2015. There were 25 questions: seven in a 5-point Likert scale (1: worst scenario, 5: best scenario) and the remainder as closed multiple-choice questions in five areas (satisfaction, adequacy, system, mentorship, and evaluation of training). Included were 419 respondents (215 CM, 159 ID, and 45 combined CM/ID) from 31 European countries [mean age (standard deviation) 32.4 (5.3) years, 65.9 % women]. Regarding satisfaction on the training scheme, CM and ID scored 3.6 (0.9) and 3.2 (1.0), respectively. These scores varied between countries, ranging from 2.5 (1.0) for Italian ID to 4.3 (0.8) for Danish CM trainees. The majority of respondents considered training in management and health economics inadequate and e-learning and continuing medical education programs insufficient. Many trainees (65.3 % of CM and 62.9 % of ID) would like to have more opportunities to spend a part of their training abroad and expected their mentor to be more involved in helping with future career plans (63.5 % of CM and 53.4 % of ID) and practical skills (53.0 % of CM and 61.2 % of ID). Two-thirds of the respondents across the specialties agreed that a European exam should be developed, but half of them thought it should not be made mandatory. This survey shows high heterogeneity in training conditions in European countries, identifies perceived gaps in training, and suggests areas for improvements.

  12. CRISPR-mediated genome editing and human diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liquan Cai

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats technology has emerged as a powerful technology for genome editing and is now widely used in basic biomedical research to explore gene function. More recently, this technology has been increasingly applied to the study or treatment of human diseases, including Barth syndrome effects on the heart, Duchenne muscular dystrophy, hemophilia, β-Thalassemia, and cystic fibrosis. CRISPR/Cas9 (CRISPR-associated protein 9 genome editing has been used to correct disease-causing DNA mutations ranging from a single base pair to large deletions in model systems ranging from cells in vitro to animals in vivo. In addition to genetic diseases, CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing has also been applied in immunology-focused applications such as the targeting of C-C chemokine receptor type 5, the programmed death 1 gene, or the creation of chimeric antigen receptors in T cells for purposes such as the treatment of the acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS or promoting anti-tumor immunotherapy. Furthermore, this technology has been applied to the genetic manipulation of domesticated animals with the goal of producing biologic medical materials, including molecules, cells or organs, on a large scale. Finally, CRISPR/Cas9 has been teamed with induced pluripotent stem (iPS cells to perform multiple tissue engineering tasks including the creation of disease models or the preparation of donor-specific tissues for transplantation. This review will explore the ways in which the use of CRISPR/Cas9 is opening new doors to the treatment of human diseases.

  13. Exploring the potential relevance of human-specific genes to complex disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cooper David N

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Although human disease genes generally tend to be evolutionarily more ancient than non-disease genes, complex disease genes appear to be represented more frequently than Mendelian disease genes among genes of more recent evolutionary origin. It is therefore proposed that the analysis of human-specific genes might provide new insights into the genetics of complex disease. Cross-comparison with the Human Gene Mutation Database (http://www.hgmd.org revealed a number of examples of disease-causing and disease-associated mutations in putatively human-specific genes. A sizeable proportion of these were missense polymorphisms associated with complex disease. Since both human-specific genes and genes associated with complex disease have often experienced particularly rapid rates of evolutionary change, either due to weaker purifying selection or positive selection, it is proposed that a significant number of human-specific genes may play a role in complex disease.

  14. Zoonotic disease surveillance--inventory of systems integrating human and animal disease information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wendt, A; Kreienbrock, L; Campe, A

    2015-02-01

    Although 65% of recent major disease outbreaks throughout the world have a zoonotic origin, there is still a sharp division among the disciplines into the human and animal health sectors. In the last few decades, a global integrative concept, often referred to as 'One Health', has been strongly endorsed. Surveillance and monitoring efforts are major components for effective disease prevention and control. As human health and animal health are inextricably linked, it is assumed that a cross-sectoral data interpretation of zoonotic disease information will improve their prevention, prediction and control. To provide an overview of existing systems throughout the world which integrate information from humans and animals on zoonotic diseases, a literature review was conducted. Twenty projects were identified and described regarding their concepts and realization. They all vary widely depending on their surveillance purpose, their structure and the source of information they use. What they have in common is that they quite often use data which have already been collected for another purpose. Therefore, the challenges of how to make use of such secondary data are of great interest.

  15. The Exposome Research Paradigm: an Opportunity to Understand the Environmental Basis for Human Health and Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buck Louis, Germaine M; Smarr, Melissa M; Patel, Chirag J

    2017-03-01

    This paper presents an overview of the exposome research paradigm with particular application to understanding human reproduction and development and its implications for health across a lifespan. The exposome research paradigm has generated considerable discussion about its feasibility and utility for delineating the impact of environmental exposures on human health. Early initiatives are underway, including smaller proof-of-principle studies and larger concerted efforts. Despite the notable challenges underlying the exposome paradigm, analytic techniques are being developed to handle its untargeted approach and correlated and multi-level or hierarchical data structures such initiatives generate, while considering multiple comparisons. The relatively short intervals for critical and sensitive windows of human reproduction and development seem well suited for exposome research and may revolutionize our understanding of later onset diseases. Early initiatives suggest that the exposome paradigm is feasible, but its utility remains to be established with applications to population human health research.

  16. Human flora-associated (HFA) animals as a model for studying the role of intestinal flora in human health and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirayama, Kazuhiro; Itoh, Kikuji

    2005-09-01

    Although the intestinal flora in animals plays an important role in health and disease, there is little direct information regarding the role of the human intestinal flora. By inoculating germfree animals with human faeces, the major components of the human flora can be transferred into the ex-germfree animals, i.e. human flora-associated (HFA) animals. HFA animals therefore provide a stable model for studying the ecosystem and metabolism of the human intestinal flora. Results with HFA animals suggest the role of the human intestinal flora is somewhat different from the role of the animal flora in conventional experimental animals. Studies using HFA animals, therefore, will provide much needed information on the precise role of the intestinal flora in relation to humans. HFA animals also can be used as models to investigate the interactions between the human intestinal flora, host factors, dietary manipulations, and therapeutics, such as probiotics, prebiotics, and antibiotics.

  17. Africa: the next frontier for human disease gene discovery?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramsay, Michèle; Tiemessen, Caroline T; Choudhury, Ananyo; Soodyall, Himla

    2011-10-15

    The populations of Africa harbour the greatest human genetic diversity following an evolutionary history tracing its beginnings on the continent to time before the emergence of Homo sapiens. Signatures of selection are detectable as responses to ancient environments and cultural practices, modulated by more recent events including infectious epidemics, migrations, admixture and, of course, chance. The age of high-throughput biology is not passing Africa by. African-based cohort studies and networks with an African footprint are ideal springboards for disease-related genetic and genomic studies. Initiatives like HapMap, the 1000 Genomes Project, MalariaGEN, the INDEPTH network and Human Heredity and Health in Africa are catalysts to exploring African genetic diversity and its role in the spectrum from health to disease. The challenges are abundant in dissecting biological questions in the light of linguistic, cultural, geographic and political boundaries and their respective roles in shaping health-related profiles. Will studies based on African populations lead to a new wave of discovery of genetic contributors to disease?

  18. Malarial birds: modeling infectious human disease in animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slater, Leo B

    2005-01-01

    Through the examination of avian malarias as models of infectious human disease, this paper reveals the kinds of claims that scientists and physicians made on the basis of animal models-biological systems in the laboratory and the field-and what characteristics made for congruence between these models and human malaria. The focus is on the period between 1895 and 1945, and on the genesis and trajectory of certain animal models of malaria within specific locations, such as the Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health in Baltimore and Bayer (I. G. Farben) in Elberfeld. These exemplars illustrate a diversity of approaches to malaria-as-disease, and the difficulties of framing aspects of this disease complex within an animal or laboratory system. The diversity and nearness to wild types of the birds, protozoan parasites, and mosquitoes that made up these malaria models contributed a great deal to the complexity of the models. Avian malarias, adopted with enthusiasm, were essential to the success of the U.S. antimalarial program during World War II.

  19. Transcriptome Profiling in Human Diseases: New Advances and Perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amelia Casamassimi

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available In the last decades, transcriptome profiling has been one of the most utilized approaches to investigate human diseases at the molecular level. Through expression studies, many molecular biomarkers and therapeutic targets have been found for several human pathologies. This number is continuously increasing thanks to total RNA sequencing. Indeed, this new technology has completely revolutionized transcriptome analysis allowing the quantification of gene expression levels and allele-specific expression in a single experiment, as well as to identify novel genes, splice isoforms, fusion transcripts, and to investigate the world of non-coding RNA at an unprecedented level. RNA sequencing has also been employed in important projects, like ENCODE (Encyclopedia of the regulatory elements and TCGA (The Cancer Genome Atlas, to provide a snapshot of the transcriptome of dozens of cell lines and thousands of primary tumor specimens. Moreover, these studies have also paved the way to the development of data integration approaches in order to facilitate management and analysis of data and to identify novel disease markers and molecular targets to use in the clinics. In this scenario, several ongoing clinical trials utilize transcriptome profiling through RNA sequencing strategies as an important instrument in the diagnosis of numerous human pathologies.

  20. Lack of megalin expression in adult human terminal ileum suggests megalin‐independent cubilin/amnionless activity during vitamin B12 absorption

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jensen, Louise L.; Andersen, Rikke K.; Hager, Henrik; Madsen, Mette

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Cubilin plays an essential role in terminal ileum and renal proximal tubules during absorption of vitamin B12 and ligands from the glomerular ultrafiltrate. Cubilin is coexpressed with amnionless, and cubilin and amnionless are mutually dependent on each other for correct processing to the plasma membrane upon synthesis. Patients with defects in either protein suffer from vitamin B12‐malabsorption and in some cases proteinuria. Cubilin lacks a transmembrane region and signals for endocytosis and is dependent on a transmembrane coreceptor during internalization. Amnionless has been shown to be able to mediate internalization of cubilin in a cell‐based model system. Cubilin has additionally been suggested to function together with megalin, and a recent study of megalin‐deficient patients indicates that uptake of cubilin ligands in the kidney is critically dependent on megalin. To further investigate the potential role of amnionless and megalin in relation to cubilin function in terminal ileum and vitamin B12 uptake, we initiated a study of CUBN/cubilin, AMN/amnionless, and LRP2/megalin expression in adult human terminal ileum. Our study is the first to reveal the expression pattern of cubilin, amnionless, and megalin in adult human terminal ileum, where cubilin and amnionless localize to the epithelial cells. Surprisingly, we did not detect any megalin protein in adult terminal ileum and consistently, only extremely low amounts of LRP2 mRNA. Our data therefore advocate that cubilin and amnionless act independently of megalin in adult terminal ileum and that the cubilin‐megalin interdependency accordingly should be considered as tissue and ligand specific. PMID:25052491

  1. Lack of megalin expression in adult human terminal ileum suggests megalin-independent cubilin/amnionless activity during vitamin B12 absorption.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jensen, Louise L; Andersen, Rikke K; Hager, Henrik; Madsen, Mette

    2014-07-01

    Cubilin plays an essential role in terminal ileum and renal proximal tubules during absorption of vitamin B12 and ligands from the glomerular ultrafiltrate. Cubilin is coexpressed with amnionless, and cubilin and amnionless are mutually dependent on each other for correct processing to the plasma membrane upon synthesis. Patients with defects in either protein suffer from vitamin B12-malabsorption and in some cases proteinuria. Cubilin lacks a transmembrane region and signals for endocytosis and is dependent on a transmembrane coreceptor during internalization. Amnionless has been shown to be able to mediate internalization of cubilin in a cell-based model system. Cubilin has additionally been suggested to function together with megalin, and a recent study of megalin-deficient patients indicates that uptake of cubilin ligands in the kidney is critically dependent on megalin. To further investigate the potential role of amnionless and megalin in relation to cubilin function in terminal ileum and vitamin B12 uptake, we initiated a study of CUBN/cubilin, AMN/amnionless, and LRP2/megalin expression in adult human terminal ileum. Our study is the first to reveal the expression pattern of cubilin, amnionless, and megalin in adult human terminal ileum, where cubilin and amnionless localize to the epithelial cells. Surprisingly, we did not detect any megalin protein in adult terminal ileum and consistently, only extremely low amounts of LRP2 mRNA. Our data therefore advocate that cubilin and amnionless act independently of megalin in adult terminal ileum and that the cubilin-megalin interdependency accordingly should be considered as tissue and ligand specific.

  2. Exosomes secreted by human placenta carry functional Fas ligand and TRAIL molecules and convey apoptosis in activated immune cells, suggesting exosome-mediated immune privilege of the fetus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stenqvist, Ann-Christin; Nagaeva, Olga; Baranov, Vladimir; Mincheva-Nilsson, Lucia

    2013-12-01

    Apoptosis is crucially important in mediating immune privilege of the fetus during pregnancy. We investigated the expression and in vitro apoptotic activity of two physiologically relevant death messengers, the TNF family members Fas ligand (FasL) and TRAIL in human early and term placentas. Both molecules were intracellularly expressed, confined to the late endosomal compartment of the syncytiotrophoblast, and tightly associated to the generation and secretion of placental exosomes. Using immunoelectron microscopy, we show that FasL and TRAIL are expressed on the limiting membrane of multivesicular bodies where, by membrane invagination, intraluminal microvesicles carrying membranal bioactive FasL and TRAIL are formed and released in the extracellular space as exosomes. Analyzing exosomes secreted from placental explant cultures, to our knowledge, we demonstrate for the first time that FasL and TRAIL are clustered on the exosomal membrane as oligomerized aggregates ready to form death-inducing signaling complex. Consistently, placental FasL- and TRAIL-carrying exosomes triggered apoptosis in Jurkat T cells and activated PBMC in a dose-dependent manner. Limiting the expression of functional FasL and TRAIL to exosomes comprise a dual benefit: 1) storage of exosomal FasL and TRAIL in multivesicular bodies is protected from proteolytic cleavage and 2) upon secretion, delivery of preformed membranal death molecules by exosomes rapidly triggers apoptosis. Our results suggest that bioactive FasL- and TRAIL-carrying exosomes, able to convey apoptosis, are secreted by the placenta and tie up the immunomodulatory and protective role of human placenta to its exosome-secreting ability.

  3. Traffic jam: a compendium of human diseases that affect intracellular transport processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aridor, M; Hannan, L A

    2000-11-01

    As sequencing of the human genome nears completion, the genes that cause many human diseases are being identified and functionally described. This has revealed that many human diseases are due to defects of intracellular trafficking. This 'Toolbox' catalogs and briefly describes these diseases.

  4. Possible involvement of infection with human coronavirus 229E, but not NL63, in Kawasaki disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shirato, Kazuya; Imada, Yoshio; Kawase, Miyuki; Nakagaki, Keiko; Matsuyama, Shutoku; Taguchi, Fumihiro

    2014-12-01

    Although human coronavirus (HCoV)-NL63 was once considered a possible causative agent of Kawasaki disease based on RT-PCR analyses, subsequent studies could not confirm the result. In this study, this possibility was explored using serological tests. To evaluate the role of HCoV infection in patients with Kawasaki disease, immunofluorescence assays and virus neutralizing tests were performed. Paired serum samples were obtained from patients with Kawasaki disease who had not been treated with γ-globulin. HCoV-NL63 and two antigenically different isolates of HCoV-229E (ATCC-VR740 and a new isolate, Sendai-H) were examined as controls. Immunofluorescence assays detected no difference in HCoV-NL63 antibody positivity between the patients with Kawasaki disease and controls, whereas the rate of HCoV-229E antibody positivity was higher in the patients with Kawasaki disease than that in controls. The neutralizing tests revealed no difference in seropositivity between the acute and recovery phases of patients with Kawasaki disease for the two HCoV-229Es. However, the Kawasaki disease specimens obtained from patients in recovery phase displayed significantly higher positivity for Sendai-H, but not for ATCC-VR740, as compared to the controls. The serological test supported no involvement of HCoV-NL63 but suggested the possible involvement of HCoV-229E in the development of Kawasaki disease. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. Base composition at mtDNA boundaries suggests a DNA triple helix model for human mitochondrial DNA large-scale rearrangements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocher, Christophe; Letellier, Thierry; Copeland, William C; Lestienne, Patrick

    2002-06-01

    Different mechanisms have been proposed to account for mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) instability based on the presence of short homologous sequences (direct repeats, DR) at the potential boundaries of mtDNA rearrangements. Among them, slippage-mispairing of the replication complex during the asymmetric replication cycle of the mammalian mitochondrial DNA has been proposed to account for the preferential localization of deletions. This mechanism involves a transfer of the replication complex from the first neo-synthesized heavy (H) strand of the DR1, to the DR2, thus bypassing the intervening sequence and producing a deleted molecule. Nevertheless, the nature of the bonds between the DNA strands remains unknown as the forward sequence of DR2, beyond the replication complex, stays double-stranded. Here, we have analyzed the base composition of the DR at the boundaries of mtDNA deletions and duplications and found a skewed pyrimidine content of about 75% in the light-strand DNA template. This suggests the possible building of a DNA triple helix between the G-rich neo-synthesized DR1 and the base-paired homologous G.C-rich DR2. In vitro experiments with the purified human DNA polymerase gamma subunits enabled us to show that the third DNA strand may be used as a primer for DNA replication, using a template with the direct repeat forming a hairpin, with which the primer could initiate DNA replication. These data suggest a novel molecular basis for mitochondrial DNA rearrangements through the distributive nature of the DNA polymerase gamma, at the level of the direct repeats. A general model accounting for large-scale mitochondrial DNA deletion and duplication is proposed. These experiments extend to a DNA polymerase from an eucaryote source the use of a DNA triple helix strand as a primer, like other DNA polymerases from phage and bacterial origins.

  6. Homo-trimeric Structure of the Type IVb Minor Pilin CofB Suggests Mechanism of CFA/III Pilus Assembly in Human Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawahara, Kazuki; Oki, Hiroya; Fukakusa, Shunsuke; Yoshida, Takuya; Imai, Tomoya; Maruno, Takahiro; Kobayashi, Yuji; Motooka, Daisuke; Iida, Tetsuya; Ohkubo, Tadayasu; Nakamura, Shota

    2016-03-27

    In gram-negative bacteria, the assembly of type IV pilus (T4P) and the evolutionally related pseudopilus of type II secretion system involves specialized structural proteins called pilins and pseudopilins, respectively, and is dynamically regulated to promote bacterial pathogenesis. Previous studies have suggested that a structural "tip"-like hetero-complex formed through the interaction of at least three minor (pseudo) pilins plays an important role in this process, while some members of the pathogenic type IVb subfamily are known to have only one such minor pilin subunit whose function is still unknown. Here, we determined the crystal structure of the type IVb minor pilin CofB of colonization factor antigen/III from human enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli at 1.88-Å resolution. The crystal structure, in conjunction with physicochemical analysis in solution, reveals a symmetrical homo-trimeric arrangement distinct from the hetero-complexes of minor (pseudo) pilins observed in other T4P and type II secretion systems. Each CofB monomer adopts a unique three-domain architecture, in which the C-terminal β-sheet-rich lectin domain can effectively initiate trimer association of its pilin-like N-terminal domain through extensive hydrophobic interactions followed by domain swapping at the central hinge-like domain. Deletion of cofB produces a phenotype with no detectable pili formation on the cell surface, while molecular modeling indicates that the characteristic homo-trimeric structure of CofB is well situated at the pilus tip of colonization factor antigen/III formed by the major pilin CofA, suggesting a role for the minor pilin in the efficient initiation of T4P assembly. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Network Medicine: A Network-based Approach to Human Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghiassian, Susan Dina

    With the availability of large-scale data, it is now possible to systematically study the underlying interaction maps of many complex systems in multiple disciplines. Statistical physics has a long and successful history in modeling and characterizing systems with a large number of interacting individuals. Indeed, numerous approaches that were first developed in the context of statistical physics, such as the notion of random walks and diffusion processes, have been applied successfully to study and characterize complex systems in the context of network science. Based on these tools, network science has made important contributions to our understanding of many real-world, self-organizing systems, for example in computer science, sociology and economics. Biological systems are no exception. Indeed, recent studies reflect the necessity of applying statistical and network-based approaches in order to understand complex biological systems, such as cells. In these approaches, a cell is viewed as a complex network consisting of interactions among cellular components, such as genes and proteins. Given the cellular network as a platform, machinery, functionality and failure of a cell can be studied with network-based approaches, a field known as systems biology. Here, we apply network-based approaches to explore human diseases and their associated genes within the cellular network. This dissertation is divided in three parts: (i) A systematic analysis of the connectivity patterns among disease proteins within the cellular network. The quantification of these patterns inspires the design of an algorithm which predicts a disease-specific subnetwork containing yet unknown disease associated proteins. (ii) We apply the introduced algorithm to explore the common underlying mechanism of many complex diseases. We detect a subnetwork from which inflammatory processes initiate and result in many autoimmune diseases. (iii) The last chapter of this dissertation describes the

  8. Human pathogen shown to cause disease in the threatened eklhorn coral Acropora palmata.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathryn Patterson Sutherland

    Full Text Available Coral reefs are in severe decline. Infections by the human pathogen Serratia marcescens have contributed to precipitous losses in the common Caribbean elkhorn coral, Acropora palmata, culminating in its listing under the United States Endangered Species Act. During a 2003 outbreak of this coral disease, called acroporid serratiosis (APS, a unique strain of the pathogen, Serratia marcescens strain PDR60, was identified from diseased A. palmata, human wastewater, the non-host coral Siderastrea siderea and the corallivorous snail Coralliophila abbreviata. In order to examine humans as a source and other marine invertebrates as vectors and/or reservoirs of the APS pathogen, challenge experiments were conducted with A. palmata maintained in closed aquaria to determine infectivity of strain PDR60 from reef and wastewater sources. Strain PDR60 from wastewater and diseased A. palmata caused disease signs in elkhorn coral in as little as four and five days, respectively, demonstrating that wastewater is a definitive source of APS and identifying human strain PDR60 as a coral pathogen through fulfillment of Koch's postulates. A. palmata inoculated with strain PDR60 from C. abbreviata showed limited virulence, with one of three inoculated fragments developing APS signs within 13 days. Strain PDR60 from non-host coral S. siderea showed a delayed pathogenic effect, with disease signs developing within an average of 20 days. These results suggest that C. abbreviata and non-host corals may function as reservoirs or vectors of the APS pathogen. Our results provide the first example of a marine "reverse zoonosis" involving the transmission of a human pathogen (S. marcescens to a marine invertebrate (A. palmata. These findings underscore the interaction between public health practices and environmental health indices such as coral reef survival.

  9. The possible mechanisms of the human microbiome in allergic diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ipci, Kagan; Altıntoprak, Niyazi; Muluk, Nuray Bayar; Senturk, Mehmet; Cingi, Cemal

    2017-02-01

    In the present paper, we discuss the importance of the microbiome in allergic disease. In this review paper, the data from the Medline (PubMed) and search engine of Kirikkale University were systematically searched for all relevant articles in June 15th, 2015 for the past 30 years. The keywords of "microbiome", "dysbiosis", "allergy", "allergic rhinitis", "allergic disease", "mechanisms" and "treatment" were used alone or together. In this paper, microbiomes were presented in terms of "Definition", "Influence of \\the human microbiome on health", "The microbiome and allergic diseases", and "Modulation of the gut microbiota in terms of treatment and prevention". Microbiological dysbiosis is also reviewed. The microbiome is the genetic material of all microbes (bacteria, fungi, protozoa, and viruses) that live on or in the human body. Microbes outnumber human cells in a 10:1 ratio. Most microbes live in the gut, particularly the large intestine. Changes in the immune function of the respiratory tract are (at least in theory) linked to the immunomodulatory activity of the gut microbiota via the concept of a "common mucosal response". The gut microbiota shapes systemic immunity, thus affecting the lung mucosa. Alternatively, changes in the gut microbiota may reflect alterations in the oropharyngeal microbiota, which may in turn directly affect the lung microbiota and host immune responses via microaspiration. Dysbiosis is defined as qualitative and quantitative changes in the intestinal flora; and modern diet and lifestyle, antibiotics, psychological and physical stress result in alterations in bacterial metabolism, as well as the overgrowth of potentially pathogenic microorganisms. All immune system components are directly or indirectly regulated by the microbiota. The nature of microbial exposure early in life appears to be important for the development of robust immune regulation; disruption of either the microbiota or the host response can trigger chronic

  10. Human RECQ helicases: roles in cancer, aging, and inherited disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sidorova JM

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Julia M Sidorova,1,* Raymond J Monnat Jr,1,2,* 1Department of Pathology, 2Department of Genome Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA *The authors contributed equally to this review Abstract: DNA helicases use the energy of ATP hydrolysis to disrupt DNA base pairing and displace proteins from DNA in order to facilitate replication, recombination, transcription, and repair. This article focuses on the human RECQ helicases, five DNA-dependent helicases that play key roles in cellular physiology and disease. Loss of function of three RECQ helicases causes the cancer predisposition syndromes Bloom syndrome, Werner syndrome, and Rothmund–Thomson and related syndromes. We summarize recent work on these syndromes and proteins and discuss disease pathogenesis in light of RECQ helicase biochemical activities and in vivo functions. Keywords: ATP-dependent DNA helicase, Bloom syndrome, Werner syndrome, Rothmund–Thomson syndrome, DNA replication, DNA repair, genetic instability, cancer predisposition syndrome

  11. Mutations that Cause Human Disease: A Computational/Experimental Approach

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beernink, P; Barsky, D; Pesavento, B

    2006-01-11

    International genome sequencing projects have produced billions of nucleotides (letters) of DNA sequence data, including the complete genome sequences of 74 organisms. These genome sequences have created many new scientific opportunities, including the ability to identify sequence variations among individuals within a species. These genetic differences, which are known as single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), are particularly important in understanding the genetic basis for disease susceptibility. Since the report of the complete human genome sequence, over two million human SNPs have been identified, including a large-scale comparison of an entire chromosome from twenty individuals. Of the protein coding SNPs (cSNPs), approximately half leads to a single amino acid change in the encoded protein (non-synonymous coding SNPs). Most of these changes are functionally silent, while the remainder negatively impact the protein and sometimes cause human disease. To date, over 550 SNPs have been found to cause single locus (monogenic) diseases and many others have been associated with polygenic diseases. SNPs have been linked to specific human diseases, including late-onset Parkinson disease, autism, rheumatoid arthritis and cancer. The ability to predict accurately the effects of these SNPs on protein function would represent a major advance toward understanding these diseases. To date several attempts have been made toward predicting the effects of such mutations. The most successful of these is a computational approach called ''Sorting Intolerant From Tolerant'' (SIFT). This method uses sequence conservation among many similar proteins to predict which residues in a protein are functionally important. However, this method suffers from several limitations. First, a query sequence must have a sufficient number of relatives to infer sequence conservation. Second, this method does not make use of or provide any information on protein structure, which

  12. [Human and animal parasitic diseases in the New Hebrides].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourée, P; Léon, J J

    1976-01-01

    New-Hebrides Condominium, an archipelago in the South Pacific, is a country with a special socio-political environment, due to the duality of its French-British regime. This state of affairs is felt in all areas including Public Health, where we find French, British and Condominial personnel. The pathology of parasitic diseases is essentially tropical with a strong predominance of paludism, at times fatal, and intestinal nematodes; however we rarely find amibiasis or human hydatid disease. Strongyloidiasis as well as specific ascaris of each species are very frequent in animals. In general cattle is relatively healthy, which is fortunate for a country whose economy is turning more and more to breeding.

  13. Therapeutics Targeting FGF Signaling Network in Human Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katoh, Masaru

    2016-12-01

    Fibroblast growth factor (FGF) signaling through its receptors, FGFR1, FGFR2, FGFR3, or FGFR4, regulates cell fate, angiogenesis, immunity, and metabolism. Dysregulated FGF signaling causes human diseases, such as breast cancer, chondrodysplasia, gastric cancer, lung cancer, and X-linked hypophosphatemic rickets. Recombinant FGFs are pro-FGF signaling therapeutics for tissue and/or wound repair, whereas FGF analogs and gene therapy are under development for the treatment of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and osteoarthritis. FGF traps, anti-FGF/FGFR monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), and small-molecule FGFR inhibitors are anti-FGF signaling therapeutics under development for the treatment of cancer, chondrodysplasia, and rickets. Here, I discuss the benefit-risk and cost-effectiveness issues of precision medicine targeting FGFRs, ALK, EGFR, and FLT3. FGFR-targeted therapy should be optimized for cancer treatment, focusing on genomic tests and recurrence.

  14. Motor unit involvement in human acute Chagas' disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. R. Benavente

    1989-09-01

    Full Text Available Thirty five patients with acute Chagas' disease who demonstrated parasitaemia at the time of the investigation were submitted to a detailed electromyographical study. With their muscles at rest, 12 patients showed fibrillation potentials and/or positive sharp waves. On volitional contraction, 7 had short duration motor unit potentials (MUPs and low polyphasic MUPs. On motor and sensory nerve fibers conduction studies, 20 disclosed values below the lower control limit within one or more nerves. Finally, 12 patients produced a muscle, decremental response on nerve supramaximal repetitive stimulation. The findings signal that primary muscle involvement, neuropathy and impairement of the neuromuscular transmission, either isolated or combined, may be found in the acute stage of human Chagas' disease.

  15. Human papillomavirus infection and disease in men: Impact of HIV

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sinead Delany-Moretlwe

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available There is growing evidence of a significant burden of human papillomavirus (HPV infection and associated disease in men. High rates of HPV infection have been observed in men from sub-Saharan Africa where HIV prevalence is high. HIV infection increases HPV prevalence, incidence and persistence and is strongly associated with the development of anogenital warts and anal, penile and head and neck cancers in men. Despite increasing access to antiretroviral therapy, there appears to be little benefit in preventing the development of these cancers in HIV-positive men, making prevention of infection a priority. New prevention options that are being introduced in many African countries include male circumcision and HPV vaccination. However, more data are needed on the burden of HPV disease in men before boys are included in HPV vaccination programmes.

  16. Human embryonic stem cell therapies for neurodegenerative diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomaskovic-Crook, Eva; Crook, Jeremy M

    2011-06-01

    There is a renewed enthusiasm for the clinical translation of human embryonic stem (hES) cells. This is abetted by putative clinically-compliant strategies for hES cell maintenance and directed differentiation, greater understanding of and accessibility to cells through formal cell registries and centralized cell banking for distribution, the revised US government policy on funding hES cell research, and paradoxically the discovery of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. Additionally, as we consider the constraints (practical and fiscal) of delivering cell therapies for global healthcare, the more efficient and economical application of allogeneic vs autologous treatments will bolster the clinical entry of hES cell derivatives. Neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson's disease are primary candidates for hES cell therapy, although there are significant hurdles to be overcome. The present review considers key advances and challenges to translating hES cells into novel therapies for neurodegenerative diseases, with special consideration given to Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease. Importantly, despite the focus on degenerative brain disorders and hES cells, many of the issues canvassed by this review are relevant to systemic application of hES cells and other pluripotent stem cells such as iPS cells.

  17. Use of rodents as models of human diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thierry F Vandamme

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Advances in molecular biology have significantly increased the understanding of the biology of different diseases. However, these discoveries have not yet been fully translated into improved treatments for patients with diseases such as cancers. One of the factors limiting the translation of knowledge from preclinical studies to the clinic has been the limitations of in vivo diseases models. In this brief review, we will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of rodent models that have been developed to simulate human pathologies, focusing in models that employ xenografts and genetic modification. Within the framework of genetically engineered mouse (GEM models, we will review some of the current genetic strategies for modeling diseases in the mouse and the preclinical studies that have already been undertaken. We will also discuss how recent improvements in imaging technologies may increase the information derived from using these GEMs during early assessments of potential therapeutic pathways. Furthermore, it is interesting to note that one of the values of using a mouse model is the very rapid turnover rate of the animal, going through the process of birth to death in a very short timeframe relative to that of larger mammalian species.

  18. Complement regulators in human disease: lessons from modern genetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    K Liszewski, M; Atkinson, J P

    2015-03-01

    First identified in human serum in the late 19th century as a 'complement' to antibodies in mediating bacterial lysis, the complement system emerged more than a billion years ago probably as the first humoral immune system. The contemporary complement system consists of nearly 60 proteins in three activation pathways (classical, alternative and lectin) and a terminal cytolytic pathway common to all. Modern molecular biology and genetics have not only led to further elucidation of the structure of complement system components, but have also revealed function-altering rare variants and common polymorphisms, particularly in regulators of the alternative pathway, that predispose to human disease by creating 'hyperinflammatory complement phenotypes'. To treat these 'complementopathies', a monoclonal antibody against the initiator of the membrane attack complex, C5, has received approval for use. Additional therapeutic reagents are on the horizon.

  19. Sexual behaviour and risk factors for the acquisition of human papillomavirus infections in young people in Italy: suggestions for future vaccination policies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Panatto Donatella

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Human Papillomavirus (HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection. The main risk factors correlated with HPV infection are: early sexual debut, the number of partners, frequency and type of sexual contact and partner’s sexual histories. We surveyed sexual habits among young people in order to provide information that might orient decision-makers in adopting HPV multi-cohort vaccination policies. Methods We administered a questionnaire to students (14–24 years old in five Italian cities. Results 7298 questionnaires were analyzed (4962 females and 2336 males; 55.3% of females (95% CI 53.9–56.7 and 52.5% of males (95% CI 50.5–54.5 reported regular sexual activity. The mean age at sexual debut was 15.7 ± 1.6 and 15.6 ± 1.6 for females and males, respectively, and the median age was 16 for both sexes. With regard to contraceptive use during the last year, 63.6% of males and 62.8% of females responded affirmatively; 42.6% of males and 42.8% of females used condoms. Conclusion The results reveal precocious sexual activity among respondents, with the mean age at first intercourse declining as age decreases. Condom use proved to be scant. Considering lifestyle-related risk factors, males appear to have a higher probability of acquiring HPV infection than females. These data support the importance of promoting multi-cohort HPV vaccination strategies for females up to 25 years of age. It is essential to improve vaccination coverage through different broad-spectrum strategies, including campaigns to increase awareness of sexually transmitted diseases and their prevention.

  20. Aquaporin water channels: molecular mechanisms for human diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agre, Peter; Kozono, David

    2003-11-27

    Although water is the major component of all biological fluids, the molecular pathways for water transport across cell membranes eluded identification until the discovery of the aquaporin family of water channels. The atomic structure of mammalian AQP1 illustrates how this family of proteins is freely permeated by water but not protons (hydronium ions, H3O+). Definition of the subcellular sites of expression predicted their physiological functions and potential clinical disorders. Analysis of several human disease states has confirmed that aquaporins are involved in multiple different illnesses including abnormalities of kidney function, loss of vision, onset of brain edema, starvation, and arsenic toxicity.

  1. Melanopsin-expressing retinal ganglion cells: implications for human diseases

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    La Morgia, Chiara; Ross-Cisneros, Fred N; Hannibal, Jens

    2011-01-01

    interest on these cells, mainly focused on animal models. Only recently, a few studies have started to address the relevance of the mRGC system in humans and related diseases. We recently discovered that mRGCs resist neurodegeneration in two inherited mitochondrial disorders that cause blindness, i.......e. Leber hereditary optic neuropathy and dominant optic atrophy. The mechanism leading to mRGCs sparing in these blinding disorders, characterized by extensive and selective loss of RGCs, is currently unknown and under investigation. Other studies reported on mRGCs in glaucoma, on genetic variation...

  2. Metalloprotein Inhibitors for the Treatment of Human Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Yang; Hu, Xue-Qin; Li, Qing-Shan; Zhang, Xing-Xing; Ruan, Ban-Feng; Xu, Jun; Liao, Chenzhong

    2016-01-01

    Metalloproteins have attracted momentous attentions for the treatment of many human diseases, including cancer, HIV, hypertension, etc. This article reviews the progresses that have been made in the field of drug development of metalloprotein inhibitors, putting emphasis on the targets of carbonic anhydrase, histone deacetylase, angiotensin converting enzyme, and HIV-1 integrase. Many other important metalloproteins are also briefly discussed. The binding and coordination modes of different marketed metalloprotein inhibitors are stated, providing insights to design novel metal binding groups and further novel inhibitors for metalloproteins.

  3. Structures of the human Pals1 PDZ domain with and without ligand suggest gated access of Crb to the PDZ peptide-binding groove

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ivanova, Marina E.; Fletcher, Georgina C.; O’Reilly, Nicola; Purkiss, Andrew G.; Thompson, Barry J. [Cancer Research UK, 44 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London WC2A 3LY (United Kingdom); McDonald, Neil Q., E-mail: neil.mcdonald@cancer.org.uk [Cancer Research UK, 44 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London WC2A 3LY (United Kingdom); Birkbeck College, University of London, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HX (United Kingdom)

    2015-03-01

    This study characterizes the interaction between the carboxy-terminal (ERLI) motif of the essential polarity protein Crb and the Pals1/Stardust PDZ-domain protein. Structures of human Pals1 PDZ with and without a Crb peptide are described, explaining the highly conserved nature of the ERLI motif and revealing a sterically blocked peptide-binding groove in the absence of ligand. Many components of epithelial polarity protein complexes possess PDZ domains that are required for protein interaction and recruitment to the apical plasma membrane. Apical localization of the Crumbs (Crb) transmembrane protein requires a PDZ-mediated interaction with Pals1 (protein-associated with Lin7, Stardust, MPP5), a member of the p55 family of membrane-associated guanylate kinases (MAGUKs). This study describes the molecular interaction between the Crb carboxy-terminal motif (ERLI), which is required for Drosophila cell polarity, and the Pals1 PDZ domain using crystallography and fluorescence polarization. Only the last four Crb residues contribute to Pals1 PDZ-domain binding affinity, with specificity contributed by conserved charged interactions. Comparison of the Crb-bound Pals1 PDZ structure with an apo Pals1 structure reveals a key Phe side chain that gates access to the PDZ peptide-binding groove. Removal of this side chain enhances the binding affinity by more than fivefold, suggesting that access of Crb to Pals1 may be regulated by intradomain contacts or by protein–protein interaction.

  4. Localization of three human polypeptide GalNAc-transferases in HeLa cells suggests initiation of O-linked glycosylation throughout the Golgi apparatus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Röttger, S; White, J; Wandall, H H

    1998-01-01

    O-glycosylation of proteins is initiated by a family of UDP-N-acetylgalactosamine:polypeptide N-acetylgalactos-aminyltransferases (GalNAc-T). In this study, we have localized endogenous and epitope-tagged human GalNAc-T1, -T2 and -T3 to the Golgi apparatus in HeLa cells by subcellular fractionation......, immunofluorescence and immunoelectron microscopy. We show that all three GalNAc-transferases are concentrated about tenfold in Golgi stacks over Golgi associated tubular-vesicular membrane structures. Surprisingly, we find that GalNAc-T1, -T2 and -T3 are present throughout the Golgi stack suggesting that initiation...... of O-glycosylation may not be restricted to the cis Golgi, but occur at multiple sites within the Golgi apparatus. GalNAc-T1 distributes evenly across the Golgi stack whereas GalNAc-T2 and -T3 reside preferentially on the trans side and in the medial part of the Golgi stack, respectively. Moreover, we...

  5. A stochastic model of gene-culture coevolution suggested by the "culture historical hypothesis" for the evolution of adult lactose absorption in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aoki, K

    1986-05-01

    A stochastic model of gene-culture coevolution, suggested by the "culture historical hypothesis" of Simoons and McCracken, is presented. According to this hypothesis, adult lactose absorption, believed to be an autosomal dominant trait, attained a high frequency in some human populations due to the positive selection pressure induced by culturally determined milk use in those populations. Two-dimensional Kolmogorov backward equations with appropriate boundary conditions are derived for the ultimate fixation probability of milk users, of the gene for adult lactose absorption, and of both jointly, and for the average time until fixation of the gene. These boundary value problems are solved numerically by the Gauss-Seidel method. I define a theoretical measure of the correlation between gene and culture in terms of the three ultimate fixation probabilities. Monte Carlo simulations are conducted to check and extend the numerical results and also to obtain the first arrival time at gene frequency 0.70, which is approximately the highest observed frequency in any population. Two results that pertain to the culture historical hypothesis are obtained. First, the incomplete correlation observed between adult lactose absorption and milk use does not necessarily constitute evidence against the hypothesis. Second, for the postulated genetic change to have occurred within the 6000-year period since the advent of dairying, either the effective population size was of the order of 100, or, if it was of larger order, the selection coefficient probably had to exceed 5%.

  6. Glycogen Storage Disease Type Ia in Canines: A Model for Human Metabolic and Genetic Liver Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Specht

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available A canine model of Glycogen storage disease type Ia (GSDIa is described. Affected dogs are homozygous for a previously described M121I mutation resulting in a deficiency of glucose-6-phosphatase-α. Metabolic, clinicopathologic, pathologic, and clinical manifestations of GSDIa observed in this model are described and compared to those observed in humans. The canine model shows more complete recapitulation of the clinical manifestations seen in humans including “lactic acidosis”, larger size, and longer lifespan compared to other animal models. Use of this model in preclinical trials of gene therapy is described and briefly compared to the murine model. Although the canine model offers a number of advantages for evaluating potential therapies for GSDIa, there are also some significant challenges involved in its use. Despite these challenges, the canine model of GSDIa should continue to provide valuable information about the potential for generating curative therapies for GSDIa as well as other genetic hepatic diseases.

  7. Regulatory Role of Small Nucleolar RNAs in Human Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grigory A. Stepanov

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Small nucleolar RNAs (snoRNAs are appreciable players in gene expression regulation in human cells. The canonical function of box C/D and box H/ACA snoRNAs is posttranscriptional modification of ribosomal RNAs (rRNAs, namely, 2′-O-methylation and pseudouridylation, respectively. A series of independent studies demonstrated that snoRNAs, as well as other noncoding RNAs, serve as the source of various short regulatory RNAs. Some snoRNAs and their fragments can also participate in the regulation of alternative splicing and posttranscriptional modification of mRNA. Alterations in snoRNA expression in human cells can affect numerous vital cellular processes. SnoRNA level in human cells, blood serum, and plasma presents a promising target for diagnostics and treatment of human pathologies. Here we discuss the relation between snoRNAs and oncological, neurodegenerative, and viral diseases and also describe changes in snoRNA level in response to artificial stress and some drugs.

  8. Control of human parasitic diseases: Context and overview.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molyneux, David H

    2006-01-01

    The control of parasitic diseases of humans has been undertaken since the aetiology and natural history of the infections was recognized and the deleterious effects on human health and well-being appreciated by policy makers, medical practitioners and public health specialists. However, while some parasitic infections such as malaria have proved difficult to control, as defined by a sustained reduction in incidence, others, particularly helminth infections can be effectively controlled. The different approaches to control from diagnosis, to treatment and cure of the clinically sick patient, to control the transmission within the community by preventative chemotherapy and vector control are outlined. The concepts of eradication, elimination and control are defined and examples of success summarized. Overviews of the health policy and financing environment in which programmes to control or eliminate parasitic diseases are positioned and the development of public-private partnerships as vehicles for product development or access to drugs for parasite disease control are discussed. Failure to sustain control of parasites may be due to development of drug resistance or the failure to implement proven strategies as a result of decreased resources within the health system, decentralization of health management through health-sector reform and the lack of financial and human resources in settings where per capita government expenditure on health may be less than $US 5 per year. However, success has been achieved in several large-scale programmes through sustained national government investment and/or committed donor support. It is also widely accepted that the level of investment in drug development for the parasitic diseases of poor populations is an unattractive option for pharmaceutical companies. The development of partnerships to specifically address this need provides some hope that the intractable problems of the treatment regimens for the trypanosomiases and

  9. The Human Gut Phage Community and Its Implications for Health and Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manrique, Pilar; Dills, Michael; Young, Mark J.

    2017-01-01

    In this review, we assess our current understanding of the role of bacteriophages infecting the human gut bacterial community in health and disease. In general, bacteriophages contribute to the structure of their microbial communities by driving host and viral diversification, bacterial evolution, and by expanding the functional diversity of ecosystems. Gut bacteriophages are an ensemble of unique and shared phages in individuals, which encompass temperate phages found predominately as prophage in gut bacteria (prophage reservoir) and lytic phages. In healthy individuals, only a small fraction of the prophage reservoir is activated and found as extracellular phages. Phage community dysbiosis is characterized by a shift in the activated prophage community or an increase of lytic phages, and has been correlated with disease, suggesting that a proper balance between lysis and lysogeny is needed to maintain health. Consequently, the concept of microbial dysbiosis might be extended to the phage component of the microbiome as well. Understanding the dynamics and mechanisms to restore balance after dysbiosis is an active area of research. The use of phage transplants to re-establish health suggests that phages can be used as disease treatment. Such advances represent milestones in our understanding of gut phages in human health and should fuel research on their role in health and disease. PMID:28594392

  10. Can Neglected Tropical Diseases Compromise Human Wellbeing in Sex-, Age-, and Trait-Specific Ways?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David C Geary

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Traits that facilitate competition for reproductive resources or that influence mate choice have evolved to signal resilience to infectious disease and other stressors. As a result, the dynamics of competition and choice can, in theory, be used to generate predictions about sex-, age-, and trait-specific vulnerabilities for any sexually reproducing species, including humans. These dynamics and associated vulnerabilities are reviewed for nonhuman species, focusing on traits that are compromised by exposure to parasites. Using the same approach, sex-, age-, and trait-specific vulnerabilities to parasitic disease are illustrated for children's and adolescent's physical growth and fitness. Suggestions are then provided for widening the assessment of human vulnerabilities to include age-appropriate measures of behavioral (e.g., children's play and cognitive (e.g., language fluency traits. These are traits that are likely to be compromised by infection in age- and sex-specific ways. Inclusion of these types of measures in studies of neglected tropic diseases has the potential to provide a more nuanced understanding of how these diseases undermine human wellbeing and may provide a useful means to study the efficacy of associated treatments.

  11. The New Genomics: What Molecular Databases Can Tell Us About Human Population Variation and Endocrine Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rotwein, Peter

    2017-07-01

    Major recent advances in genetics and genomics present unique opportunities for enhancing our understanding of human physiology and disease predisposition. Here I demonstrate how analysis of genomic information can provide new insights into endocrine systems, using the human growth hormone (GH) signaling pathway as an illustrative example. GH is essential for normal postnatal growth in children, and plays important roles in other biological processes throughout life. GH actions are mediated by the GH receptor, primarily via the JAK2 protein tyrosine kinase and the STAT5B transcription factor, and inactivating mutations in this pathway all lead to impaired somatic growth. Variation in GH signaling genes has been evaluated using DNA sequence data from the Exome Aggregation Consortium, a compendium of information from >60,000 individuals. Results reveal many potential missense and other alterations in the coding regions of GH1, GHR, JAK2, and STAT5B, with most changes being uncommon. The total number of different alleles per gene varied by ~threefold, from 101 for GH1 to 338 for JAK2. Several known disease-linked mutations in GH1, GHR, and JAK2 were present but infrequent in the population; however, three amino acid changes in GHR were sufficiently prevalent (~4% to 44% of chromosomes) to suggest that they are not disease causing. Collectively, these data provide new opportunities to understand how genetically driven variability in GH signaling and action may modify human physiology and disease. Copyright © 2017 Endocrine Society.

  12. Megalin and cubilin in proximal tubule protein reabsorption: from experimental models to human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nielsen, Rikke; Christensen, Erik Ilsø; Birn, Henrik

    2016-01-01

    Proximal tubule protein uptake is mediated by 2 receptors, megalin and cubilin. These receptors rescue a variety of filtered ligands, including biomarkers, essential vitamins, and hormones. Receptor gene knockout animal models have identified important functions of the receptors and have established their essential role in modulating urinary protein excretion. Rare genetic syndromes associated with dysfunction of these receptors have been identified and characterized, providing additional information on the importance of these receptors in humans. Using various disease models in combination with receptor gene knockout, the implications of receptor dysfunction in acute and chronic kidney injury have been explored and have pointed to potential new roles of these receptors. Based on data from animal models, this paper will review current knowledge on proximal tubule endocytic receptor function and regulation, and their role in renal development, protein reabsorption, albumin uptake, and normal renal physiology. These findings have implications for the pathophysiology and diagnosis of proteinuric renal diseases. We will examine the limitations of the different models and compare the findings to phenotypic observations in inherited human disorders associated with receptor dysfunction. Furthermore, evidence from receptor knockout mouse models as well as human observations suggesting a role of protein receptors for renal disease will be discussed in light of conditions such as chronic kidney disease, diabetes, and hypertension.

  13. Profiles of microbial fatty acids in the human metabolome are disease-specific

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhanna A Ktsoyan

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The human gastrointestinal tract is inhabited by a diverse and dense symbiotic microbiota, the composition of which is the result of host-microbe co-evolution and co-adaptation. This tight integration creates intense crosstalk and signalling between the host and microbiota at the cellular and metabolic levels. In many genetic or infectious diseases the balance between host and microbiota may be compromised resulting in erroneous communication. Consequently, the composition of the human metabolome, which includes the gut metabolome, may be different in health and disease states in terms of microbial products and metabolites entering systemic circulation. To test this hypothesis, we measured the level of hydroxy, branched, cyclopropyl and unsaturated fatty acids, aldehydes, and phenyl derivatives in blood of patients with a hereditary autoinflammatory disorder, familial Mediterranean fever (FMF, and in patients with peptic ulceration (PU resulting from Helicobacter pylori infection. Discriminant function analysis of a data matrix consisting of 94 cases as statistical units (37 FMF patients, 14 PU patients, and 43 healthy controls and the concentration of 35 microbial products in the blood as statistical variables revealed a high accuracy of the proposed model (all cases were correctly classified. This suggests that the profile of microbial products and metabolites in the human metabolome is specific for a given disease and may potentially serve as a biomarker for disease.

  14. Articular Osteochondrosis: A Comparison of Naturally-Occurring Human and Animal Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCoy, Annette M; Toth, Ferenc; Dolvik, Nils I; Ekman, Stina; Ellermann, Jutta; Olstad, Kristin; Ytrehus, Bjornar; Carlson, Cathy S

    2013-01-01

    Background Osteochondrosis (OC) is a common developmental orthopedic disease affecting both humans and animals. Despite increasing recognition of this disease among children and adolescents, its pathogenesis is incompletely understood because clinical signs are often not apparent until lesions have progressed to end-stage, and examination of cadaveric early lesions is not feasible. In contrast, both naturally-occurring and surgically-induced animal models of disease have been extensively studied, most notably in horses and swine, species in which OC is recognized to have profound health and economic implications. The potential for a translational model of human OC has not been recognized in the existing human literature. Objective The purpose of this review is to highlight the similarities in signalment, predilection sites and clinical presentation of naturally-occurring OC in humans and animals and to propose a common pathogenesis for this condition across species. Study Design Review Methods The published human and veterinary literature for the various manifestations of OC was reviewed. Peer-reviewed original scientific articles and species-specific review articles accessible in PubMed (US National Library of Medicine) were eligible for inclusion. Results A broad range of similarities exists between OC affecting humans and animals, including predilection sites, clinical presentation, radiographic/MRI changes, and histological appearance of the end stage lesion, suggesting a shared pathogenesis across species. Conclusion This proposed shared pathogenesis for OC between species implies that naturally-occurring and surgically-induced models of OC in animals may be useful in determining risk factors and for testing new diagnostic and therapeutic interventions that can be used in humans. PMID:23954774

  15. The role of nanotechnology in control of human diseases: perspectives in ocular surface diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rai, Mahendra; Ingle, Avinash P; Gaikwad, Swapnil; Padovani, Felipe Hering; Alves, Monica

    2016-10-01

    Nanotechnology is the creation and use of materials and devices on the same scale as molecules and intracellular structures, typically less than 100 nm in size. It is an emerging science and has made its way into pharmaceuticals to significantly improve the delivery and efficacy of drugs in a number of therapeutic areas, due to development of various nanoparticle-based products. In recent years, there has been increasing evidence that nanotechnology can help to overcome many of the ocular diseases and hence researchers are keenly interested in this science. Nanomedicines offer promise as viable alternatives to conventional drops, gels or ointments to improve drug delivery to the eye. Because of their small size, they are well tolerated, thus preventing washout, increase bioavailability and also help in specific drug delivery. This review describes the application of nanotechnology in the control of human diseases with special emphasis on various eye and ocular surfaces diseases.

  16. Human keratin diseases: the increasing spectrum of disease and subtlety of the phenotype-genotype correlation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irvine, A D; McLean, W H

    1999-05-01

    Keratins are obligate heterodimer proteins that form the intermediate filament cytoskeleton of all epithelial cells. Keratins are tissue and differentiation specific and are expressed in pairs of types I and II proteins. The spectrum of inherited human keratin diseases has steadily increased since the causative role of mutations in the basal keratinocyte keratins 5 and 14 in epidermolysis bullosa simplex (EBS) was first reported in 1991. At the time of writing, mutations in 15 epithelial keratins and two trichocyte keratins have been associated with human diseases which include EBS, bullous congenital ichthyosiform erythroderma, epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma, ichthyosis bullosa of Siemens, diffuse and focal non-epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma, pachyonychia congenita and monilethrix. Mutations in extracutaneous keratins have been reported in oral white sponge naevus and Meesmann's corneal dystrophy. New subtleties of phenotype-genotype correlation are emerging within the keratin diseases with widely varying clinical presentations attributable to similar mutations within the same keratin. Mutations in keratin-associated proteins have recently been reported for the first time. This article reviews clinical, ultrastructural and molecular aspects of all the keratin diseases described to date and delineates potential future areas of research in this field.

  17. DiseaseMeth version 2.0: a major expansion and update of the human disease methylation database

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiong, Yichun; Wei, Yanjun; Gu, Yue; Zhang, Shumei; Lyu, Jie; Zhang, Bin; Chen, Chuangeng; Zhu, Jiang; Wang, Yihan; Liu, Hongbo; Zhang, Yan

    2017-01-01

    The human disease methylation database (DiseaseMeth, http://bioinfo.hrbmu.edu.cn/diseasemeth/) is an interactive database that aims to present the most complete collection and annotation of aberrant DNA methylation in human diseases, especially various cancers. Recently, the high-throughput microarray and sequencing technologies have promoted the production of methylome data that contain comprehensive knowledge of human diseases. In this DiseaseMeth update, we have increased the number of samples from 3610 to 32 701, the number of diseases from 72 to 88 and the disease–gene associations from 216 201 to 679 602. DiseaseMeth version 2.0 provides an expanded comprehensive list of disease–gene associations based on manual curation from experimental studies and computational identification from high-throughput methylome data. Besides the data expansion, we also updated the search engine and visualization tools. In particular, we enhanced the differential analysis tools, which now enable online automated identification of DNA methylation abnormalities in human disease in a case-control or disease–disease manner. To facilitate further mining of the disease methylome, three new web tools were developed for cluster analysis, functional annotation and survival analysis. DiseaseMeth version 2.0 should be a useful resource platform for further understanding the molecular mechanisms of human diseases. PMID:27899673

  18. Economic burden of human papillomavirus-related diseases in Italy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gianluca Baio

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: Human papilloma virus (HPV genotypes 6, 11, 16, and 18 impose a substantial burden of direct costs on the Italian National Health Service that has never been quantified fully. The main objective of the present study was to address this gap: (1 by estimating the total direct medical costs associated with nine major HPV-related diseases, namely invasive cervical cancer, cervical dysplasia, cancer of the vulva, vagina, anus, penis, and head and neck, anogenital warts, and recurrent respiratory papillomatosis, and (2 by providing an aggregate measure of the total economic burden attributable to HPV 6, 11, 16, and 18 infection. METHODS: For each of the nine conditions, we used available Italian secondary data to estimate the lifetime cost per case, the number of incident cases of each disease, the total economic burden, and the relative prevalence of HPV types 6, 11, 16, and 18, in order to estimate the aggregate fraction of the total economic burden attributable to HPV infection. RESULTS: The total direct costs (expressed in 2011 Euro associated with the annual incident cases of the nine HPV-related conditions included in the analysis were estimated to be €528.6 million, with a plausible range of €480.1-686.2 million. The fraction attributable to HPV 6, 11, 16, and 18 was €291.0 (range €274.5-315.7 million, accounting for approximately 55% of the total annual burden of HPV-related disease in Italy. CONCLUSIONS: The results provided a plausible estimate of the significant economic burden imposed by the most prevalent HPV-related diseases on the Italian welfare system. The fraction of the total direct lifetime costs attributable to HPV 6, 11, 16, and 18 infections, and the economic burden of noncervical HPV-related diseases carried by men, were found to be cost drivers relevant to the making of informed decisions about future investments in programmes of HPV prevention.

  19. Topoisomerase I in Human Disease Pathogenesis and Treatments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min Li

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Mammalian topoisomerase 1 (TOP1 is an essential enzyme for normal development. TOP1 relaxes supercoiled DNA to remove helical constraints that can otherwise hinder DNA replication and transcription and thus block cell growth. Unfortunately, this exact activity can covalently trap TOP1 on the DNA that could lead to cell death or mutagenesis, a precursor for tumorigenesis. It is therefore important for cells to find a proper balance between the utilization of the TOP1 catalytic activity to maintain DNA topology and the risk of accumulating the toxic DNA damages due to TOP1 trapping that prevents normal cell growth. In an apparent contradiction to the negative attribute of the TOP1 activity to genome stability, the detrimental effect of the TOP1-induced DNA lesions on cell survival has made this enzyme a prime target for cancer therapies to kill fast-growing cancer cells. In addition, cumulative evidence supports a direct role of TOP1 in promoting transcriptional progression independent of its topoisomerase activity. The involvement of TOP1 in transcriptional regulation has recently become a focus in developing potential new treatments for a subtype of autism spectrum disorders. Clearly, the impact of TOP1 on human health is multifold. In this review, we will summarize our current understandings on how TOP1 contributes to human diseases and how its activity is targeted for disease treatments.

  20. Topoisomerase I in Human Disease Pathogenesis and Treatments

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Min Li; Yilun Liu

    2016-01-01

    Mammalian topoisomerase 1 (TOP1) is an essential enzyme for normal development. TOP1 relaxes supercoiled DNA to remove helical constraints that can otherwise hinder DNA repli-cation and transcription and thus block cell growth. Unfortunately, this exact activity can covalently trap TOP1 on the DNA that could lead to cell death or mutagenesis, a precursor for tumorigenesis. It is therefore important for cells to find a proper balance between the utilization of the TOP1 cat-alytic activity to maintain DNA topology and the risk of accumulating the toxic DNA damages due to TOP1 trapping that prevents normal cell growth. In an apparent contradiction to the negative attribute of the TOP1 activity to genome stability, the detrimental effect of the TOP1-induced DNA lesions on cell survival has made this enzyme a prime target for cancer therapies to kill fast-growing cancer cells. In addition, cumulative evidence supports a direct role of TOP1 in pro-moting transcriptional progression independent of its topoisomerase activity. The involvement of TOP1 in transcriptional regulation has recently become a focus in developing potential new treat-ments for a subtype of autism spectrum disorders. Clearly, the impact of TOP1 on human health is multifold. In this review, we will summarize our current understandings on how TOP1 contributes to human diseases and how its activity is targeted for disease treatments.

  1. Human Brucellosis: Still an Unfamiliar and Misdiagnosed Disease in India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smita Mangalgi

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Human brucellosis is a disease with protean clinical manifestations. Despite many awareness programmes, it is still missed or wrongly diagnosed. This leads to chronic morbidity leading to misery and loss of working days. Aim and Objectives: To assess the microbiological, clinical and epidemiological aspects of human brucellosis. Materials and Methods: Patients with positive brucella screening test constituted the study material. A detailed laboratory, clinical, epidemiological study along with response to the treatment was analyzed. Results: Seroprevalence of brucellosis was found to be 1.75%. Brucellosis was clinically diagnosed in only 12.73% of cases. Fever, joint pain and low backache were the commonest symptoms. Close contact with animals and raw milk ingestion were the major sources of infection. Knowledge regarding brucellosis and its prevention was lacking in patients. Brucellosis was not considered as one of the differential diagnosis by the treating physicians. Conclusion: Brucellosis should be considered as one of the differential diagnosis in cases presenting with fever, low backache, arthritis and arthralgia. Laboratories should screen all the serum samples for brucella agglutinins by Rose Bengal Plate Test. Awareness regarding the prevention of brucellosis in the general population and regarding the existence of the disease among the doctors practicing in rural areas is needed

  2. Hsp10: anatomic distribution, functions, and involvement in human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    David, Sabrina; Bucchieri, Fabio; Corrao, Simona; Czarnecka, Anna M; Campanella, Claudia; Farina, Felicia; Peri, Giovanni; Tomasello, Giovanni; Sciumè, Carmelo; Modica, Giuseppe; La Rocca, Giampiero; Anzalone, Rita; Giuffrè, Mario; Conway De Macario, Everly; Macario, Alberto J L; Cappello, Francesco; Zummo, Giovanni

    2013-01-01

    There is growing evidence that molecular chaperones/heat shock proteins are involved in the pathogenesis of a number of human diseases, known as chaperonopathies. A better molecular understanding of the pathogenetic mechanisms is essential for addressing new strategies in diagnostics, therapeutics and clinical management of chaperonopathies, including those in which Hsp10 is involved. This chaperonin has been studied for a long time as a member of the mitochondrial protein-folding machine. However, although in normal cells Hsp10 is mainly localized in the mitochondrial matrix, it has also been found during and after stress in other subcellular compartments, such as cytosol, vesicles and secretory granules, alone or in combination with other proteins. In these extramitochondrial locales, Hsp10 plays an active role in cell signalling. For example, cancer cells often show altered levels of Hsp10, compared to normal cells. Hsp10 may also be found in the extracellular space and in the bloodstream, with a possible immunomodulatory activity. This minireview focuses on some studies to date on the involvement of Hsp10 in human disease pathogenesis.

  3. Human endogenous retrovirus-K contributes to motor neuron disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Wenxue; Lee, Myoung-Hwa; Henderson, Lisa; Tyagi, Richa; Bachani, Muzna; Steiner, Joseph; Campanac, Emilie; Hoffman, Dax A; von Geldern, Gloria; Johnson, Kory; Maric, Dragan; Morris, H Douglas; Lentz, Margaret; Pak, Katherine; Mammen, Andrew; Ostrow, Lyle; Rothstein, Jeffrey; Nath, Avindra

    2015-09-30

    The role of human endogenous retroviruses (HERVs) in disease pathogenesis is unclear. We show that HERV-K is activated in a subpopulation of patients with sporadic amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and that its envelope (env) protein may contribute to neurodegeneration. The virus was expressed in cortical and spinal neurons of ALS patients, but not in neurons from control healthy individuals. Expression of HERV-K or its env protein in human neurons caused retraction and beading of neurites. Transgenic animals expressing the env gene developed progressive motor dysfunction accompanied by selective loss of volume of the motor cortex, decreased synaptic activity in pyramidal neurons, dendritic spine abnormalities, nucleolar dysfunction, and DNA damage. Injury to anterior horn cells in the spinal cord was manifested by muscle atrophy and pathological changes consistent with nerve fiber denervation and reinnervation. Expression of HERV-K was regulated by TAR (trans-activation responsive) DNA binding protein 43, which binds to the long terminal repeat region of the virus. Thus, HERV-K expression within neurons of patients with ALS may contribute to neurodegeneration and disease pathogenesis. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  4. Small teleost fish provide new insights into human skeletal diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witten, P E; Harris, M P; Huysseune, A; Winkler, C

    2017-01-01

    Small teleost fish such as zebrafish and medaka are increasingly studied as models for human skeletal diseases. Efficient new genome editing tools combined with advances in the analysis of skeletal phenotypes provide new insights into fundamental processes of skeletal development. The skeleton among vertebrates is a highly conserved organ system, but teleost fish and mammals have evolved unique traits or have lost particular skeletal elements in each lineage. Several unique features of the skeleton relate to the extremely small size of early fish embryos and the small size of adult fish used as models. A detailed analysis of the plethora of interesting skeletal phenotypes in zebrafish and medaka pushes available skeletal imaging techniques to their respective limits and promotes the development of new imaging techniques. Impressive numbers of zebrafish and medaka mutants with interesting skeletal phenotypes have been characterized, complemented by transgenic zebrafish and medaka lines. The advent of efficient genome editing tools, such as TALEN and CRISPR/Cas9, allows to introduce targeted deficiencies in genes of model teleosts to generate skeletal phenotypes that resemble human skeletal diseases. This review will also discuss other attractive aspects of the teleost skeleton. This includes the capacity for lifelong tooth replacement and for the regeneration of dermal skeletal elements, such as scales and fin rays, which further increases the value of zebrafish and medaka models for skeletal research. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. High Leptospira Diversity in Animals and Humans Complicates the Search for Common Reservoirs of Human Disease in Rural Ecuador

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiriboga, Jorge; Miller, Erin; Olivas, Sonora; Birdsell, Dawn; Hepp, Crystal; Hornstra, Heidie; Schupp, James M.; Morales, Melba; Gonzalez, Manuel; Reyes, Soraya; de la Cruz, Carmen; Keim, Paul; Hartskeerl, Rudy; Trueba, Gabriel; Pearson, Talima

    2016-01-01

    Background Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease responsible for high morbidity around the world, especially in tropical and low income countries. Rats are thought to be the main vector of human leptospirosis in urban settings. However, differences between urban and low-income rural communities provide additional insights into the epidemiology of the disease. Methodology/Principal findings Our study was conducted in two low-income rural communities near the coast of Ecuador. We detected and characterized infectious leptospira DNA in a wide variety of samples using new real time quantitative PCR assays and amplicon sequencing. We detected infectious leptospira in a high percentage of febrile patients (14.7%). In contrast to previous studies on leptospirosis risk factors, higher positivity was not found in rats (3.0%) but rather in cows (35.8%) and pigs (21.1%). Six leptospira species were identified (L. borgpetersenii, L kirschnerii, L santarosai, L. interrogans, L noguchii, and an intermediate species within the L. licerasiae and L. wolffii clade) and no significant differences in the species of leptospira present in each animal species was detected (χ2 = 9.89, adj.p-value = 0.27). Conclusions/Significance A large portion of the world’s human population lives in low-income, rural communities, however, there is limited information about leptospirosis transmission dynamics in these settings. In these areas, exposure to peridomestic livestock is particularly common and high prevalence of infectious leptospira in cows and pigs suggest that they may be the most important reservoir for human transmission. Genotyping clinical samples show that multiple species of leptospira are involved in human disease. As these genotypes were also detected in samples from a variety of animals, genotype data must be used in conjunction with epidemiological data to provide evidence of transmission and the importance of different potential leptospirosis reservoirs. PMID:27622673

  6. Latent physiological factors of complex human diseases revealed by independent component analysis of clinarrays

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chen David P

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Diagnosis and treatment of patients in the clinical setting is often driven by known symptomatic factors that distinguish one particular condition from another. Treatment based on noticeable symptoms, however, is limited to the types of clinical biomarkers collected, and is prone to overlooking dysfunctions in physiological factors not easily evident to medical practitioners. We used a vector-based representation of patient clinical biomarkers, or clinarrays, to search for latent physiological factors that underlie human diseases directly from clinical laboratory data. Knowledge of these factors could be used to improve assessment of disease severity and help to refine strategies for diagnosis and monitoring disease progression. Results Applying Independent Component Analysis on clinarrays built from patient laboratory measurements revealed both known and novel concomitant physiological factors for asthma, types 1 and 2 diabetes, cystic fibrosis, and Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Serum sodium was found to be the most significant factor for both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, and was also significant in asthma. TSH3, a measure of thyroid function, and blood urea nitrogen, indicative of kidney function, were factors unique to type 1 diabetes respective to type 2 diabetes. Platelet count was significant across all the diseases analyzed. Conclusions The results demonstrate that large-scale analyses of clinical biomarkers using unsupervised methods can offer novel insights into the pathophysiological basis of human disease, and suggest novel clinical utility of established laboratory measurements.

  7. Pathogenic T-cell recruitment into the airway in human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medoff, Benjamin D; Thomas, Seddon Y; Banerji, Aleena; Wain, John C; Zhang, Hui; Lilly, Craig M; Ginns, Leo C; Luster, Andrew D

    2005-12-01

    Effector T cells significantly contribute to inflammatory diseases. These cells are recruited into tissue, where they orchestrate an inflammatory response that can either protect against infection or sometimes stimulate human disease. The recruitment of T cells into tissue from the blood and lymphoid compartments is an active process controlled by chemokines and the chemokine receptors expressed on distinct effector T-cell subsets. Thus, the chemokines secreted in the tissue will determine the specific types of T lymphocyte recruited into that tissue based on the chemokine receptors expressed on these cells. It follows that the chemokine receptor profile on T cells isolated from the lungs of patients with inflammatory pulmonary disease will define the subtype of pathogenic T lymphocytes mediating the disease process and will identify the mechanisms that recruit these cells into the lung. This article reviews data from both human and animal studies that define the chemokine receptors involved in the recruitment of T lymphocytes into the lung in various inflammatory pulmonary diseases, including asthma, obliterative bronchiolitis, sarcoidosis, and chronic eosinophilic pneumonia. We then speculate on the potential role of these chemokine receptors in the pathogenesis of these disorders and potential novel therapeutic approaches suggested by these data.

  8. Linking disease associations with regulatory information in the human genome

    KAUST Repository

    Schaub, M. A.

    2012-09-01

    Genome-wide association studies have been successful in identifying single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with a large number of phenotypes. However, an associated SNP is likely part of a larger region of linkage disequilibrium. This makes it difficult to precisely identify the SNPs that have a biological link with the phenotype. We have systematically investigated the association of multiple types of ENCODE data with disease-associated SNPs and show that there is significant enrichment for functional SNPs among the currently identified associations. This enrichment is strongest when integrating multiple sources of functional information and when highest confidence disease-associated SNPs are used. We propose an approach that integrates multiple types of functional data generated by the ENCODE Consortium to help identify "functional SNPs" that may be associated with the disease phenotype. Our approach generates putative functional annotations for up to 80% of all previously reported associations. We show that for most associations, the functional SNP most strongly supported by experimental evidence is a SNP in linkage disequilibrium with the reported association rather than the reported SNP itself. Our results show that the experimental data sets generated by the ENCODE Consortium can be successfully used to suggest functional hypotheses for variants associated with diseases and other phenotypes.

  9. Being human: The role of pluripotent stem cells in regenerative medicine and humanizing Alzheimer's disease models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sproul, Andrew A

    2015-01-01

    Human pluripotent stem cells (PSCs) have the capacity to revolutionize medicine by allowing the generation of functional cell types such as neurons for cell replacement therapy. However, the more immediate impact of PSCs on treatment of Alzheimer's disease (AD) will be through improved human AD model systems for mechanistic studies and therapeutic screening. This review will first briefly discuss different types of PSCs and genome-editing techniques that can be used to modify PSCs for disease modeling or for personalized medicine. This will be followed by a more in depth analysis of current AD iPSC models and a discussion of the need for more complex multicellular models, including cell types such as microglia. It will finish with a discussion on current clinical trials using PSC-derived cells and the long-term potential of such strategies for treating AD. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Universality in human cortical folding in health and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yujiang; Necus, Joe; Kaiser, Marcus; Mota, Bruno

    2016-10-24

    The folding of the cortex in mammalian brains across species has recently been shown to follow a universal scaling law that can be derived from a simple physics model. However, it was yet to be determined whether this law also applies to the morphological diversity of different individuals in a single species, in particular with respect to factors, such as age, sex, and disease. To this end, we derived and investigated the cortical morphology from magnetic resonance images (MRIs) of over 1,000 healthy human subjects from three independent public databases. Our results show that all three MRI datasets follow the scaling law obtained from the comparative neuroanatomical data, which strengthens the case for the existence of a common mechanism for cortical folding. Additionally, for comparable age groups, both male and female brains scale in exactly the same way, despite systematic differences in size and folding. Furthermore, age introduces a systematic shift in the offset of the scaling law. In the model, this shift can be interpreted as changes in the mechanical forces acting on the cortex. We also applied this analysis to a dataset derived from comparable cohorts of Alzheimer's disease patients and healthy subjects of similar age. We show a systematically lower offset and a possible change in the exponent for Alzheimer's disease subjects compared with the control cohort. Finally, we discuss implications of the changes in offset and exponent in the data and relate it to existing literature. We, thus, provide a possible mechanistic link between previously independent observations.

  11. Estrogen receptor polymorphisms: significance to human physiology, disease and therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Figtree, Gemma A; Noonan, Jonathon E; Bhindi, Ravinay; Collins, Peter

    2009-01-01

    Other than its well-recognized effects on reproductive physiology, estrogen has important actions in a wide variety of other body systems with important examples including bone, blood vessels and the heart. These effects are seen in both females and males. Investigators have hypothesized those genetic variants in the genes coding for estrogen signaling proteins may cause variable sensitivity to the hormone and influence an individual's estrogen-sensitive phenotypes. The most obvious candidate genes are the estrogen receptors alpha and (ERalpha and beta). However, the regulation of these genes is complex and not well understood. Furthermore, their coding exons, and regulatory sequences are dispersed across large segments of the genome. A number of common polymorphisms have been identified in both ERalpha and ERbeta, with variable degrees of evidence of their direct biological significance and their association with human disease. The identification of genetic variations associated with altered estrogen response is of potential public health importance. Insights may be gained into the pathogenesis of estrogen sensitive diseases such as osteoporosis, breast cancer and cardiovascular disease contributing to the development and application of newer therapies for these disorders. Furthermore, genetic variants that alter sensitivity to estrogen may affect both therapeutic and harmful responses to exogenous estrogen administered in the form of the oral contraceptive pill or hormone replacement therapy. This clinical significance has led to the publication of a number of patents which will be reviewed.

  12. Workshop meeting report Organs-on-Chips: human disease models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van de Stolpe, Anja; den Toonder, Jaap

    2013-09-21

    The concept of "Organs-on-Chips" has recently evolved and has been described as 3D (mini-) organs or tissues consisting of multiple and different cell types interacting with each other under closely controlled conditions, grown in a microfluidic chip, and mimicking the complex structures and cellular interactions in and between different cell types and organs in vivo, enabling the real time monitoring of cellular processes. In combination with the emerging iPSC (induced pluripotent stem cell) field this development offers unprecedented opportunities to develop human in vitro models for healthy and diseased organ tissues, enabling the investigation of fundamental mechanisms in disease development, drug toxicity screening, drug target discovery and drug development, and the replacement of animal testing. Capturing the genetic background of the iPSC donor in the organ or disease model carries the promise to move towards "in vitro clinical trials", reducing costs for drug development and furthering the concept of personalized medicine and companion diagnostics. During the Lorentz workshop (Leiden, September 2012) an international multidisciplinary group of experts discussed the current state of the art, available and emerging technologies, applications and how to proceed in the field. Organ-on-a-chip platform technologies are expected to revolutionize cell biology in general and drug development in particular.

  13. Thymic Epithelial Cell Development and Its Dysfunction in Human Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lina Sun

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Thymic epithelial cells (TECs are the key components in thymic microenvironment for T cells development. TECs, composed of cortical and medullary TECs, are derived from a common bipotent progenitor and undergo a stepwise development controlled by multiple levels of signals to be functionally mature for supporting thymocyte development. Tumor necrosis factor receptor (TNFR family members including the receptor activator for NFκB (RANK, CD40, and lymphotoxin β receptor (LTβR cooperatively control the thymic medullary microenvironment and self-tolerance establishment. In addition, fibroblast growth factors (FGFs, Wnt, and Notch signals are essential for establishment of functional thymic microenvironment. Transcription factors Foxn1 and autoimmune regulator (Aire are powerful modulators of TEC development, differentiation, and self-tolerance. Dysfunction in thymic microenvironment including defects of TEC and thymocyte development would cause physiological disorders such as tumor, infectious diseases, and autoimmune diseases. In the present review, we will summarize our current understanding on TEC development and the underlying molecular signals pathways and the involvement of thymus dysfunction in human diseases.

  14. Epidemiology and history of human parasitic diseases in Romania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neghina, Raul; Neghina, Adriana M; Marincu, Iosif; Iacobiciu, Ioan

    2011-06-01

    Intestinal parasitic diseases such as enterobiasis, giardiasis, and ascariasis are detected most frequently in Romania, but their importance is definitely surpassed by trichinellosis, cystic echinococcosis, and toxoplasmosis. Malaria was common until its eradication in 1963, and only imported cases are reported nowadays. The aim of this review was to bring together essential data on the epidemiology and history of human parasitoses in Romania. Information on 43 parasitic diseases was collected from numerous sources, most of them unavailable abroad or inaccessible to the international scientific community. Over time, Romanian people of all ages have paid a significant tribute to the pathogenic influences exerted by the parasites. Sanitary and socio-economical consequences of the parasites diseases have great negative impact on the quality of life of affected individuals and the overall well-being of the population. Implementation of efficient public health measures and informative campaigns for the masses as well as changing the inadequate habits that are deeply rooted in the population are mandatory for cutting successfully this Gordian knot.

  15. Hypnosis, suggestion, and suggestibility: an integrative model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynn, Steven Jay; Laurence, Jean-Roch; Kirsch, Irving

    2015-01-01

    This article elucidates an integrative model of hypnosis that integrates social, cultural, cognitive, and neurophysiological variables at play both in and out of hypnosis and considers their dynamic interaction as determinants of the multifaceted experience of hypnosis. The roles of these variables are examined in the induction and suggestion stages of hypnosis, including how they are related to the experience of involuntariness, one of the hallmarks of hypnosis. It is suggested that studies of the modification of hypnotic suggestibility; cognitive flexibility; response sets and expectancies; the default-mode network; and the search for the neurophysiological correlates of hypnosis, more broadly, in conjunction with research on social psychological variables, hold much promise to further understanding of hypnosis.

  16. Gene mapping and leader polypeptide sequence of human glucocerebrosidase: implications for Gaucher disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ginns, E I; Choudary, P V; Tsuji, S; Martin, B; Stubblefield, B; Sawyer, J; Hozier, J; Barranger, J A

    1985-01-01

    Analysis of immunologic cross-reacting material in Chinese hamster-human somatic cell hybrids allowed assignment of the structural gene for glucocerebrosidase (glucosylceramidase; beta-D-glucosyl-N-acylsphingosine glucohydrolase, EC 3.2.1.45) to chromosome 1 bands q21-q32. In situ hybridization of a radiolabeled human glucocerebrosidase cDNA to high resolution human chromosomes demonstrated that a single locus encoding glucocerebrosidase is on 1q21, adjacent to a region of chromosome 1 (1qh) abundant in structural heteromorphisms. We also have identified a hydrophobic leader polypeptide encoded by this locus, permitting a more complete description of the biosynthesis of the enzyme. These results suggest that the type-specific protein polymorphisms in Gaucher disease result from mutations at this single locus, whose segregation might be followed by linkage to visible chromosomal heteromorphisms. Images PMID:3863141

  17. Transcriptomic analysis of persistent infection with foot-and-mouth disease virus in cattle suggests impairment of cell-mediated immunity in the nasopharynx

    Science.gov (United States)

    In order to investigate the mechanisms of persistent foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) infection in cattle, transcriptome alterations associated with the FMDV carrier state were characterized using a bovine whole-transcriptome microarray. Eighteen cattle (8 vaccinated with a recombinant FMDV A vac...

  18. Borna disease virus infection perturbs energy metabolites and amino acids in cultured human oligodendroglia cells.

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    Rongzhong Huang

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Borna disease virus is a neurotropic, non-cytolytic virus that has been widely employed in neuroscientific research. Previous studies have revealed that metabolic perturbations are associated with Borna disease viral infection. However, the pathophysiological mechanism underlying its mode of action remains unclear. METHODOLOGY: Human oligodendroglia cells infected with the human strain Borna disease virus Hu-H1 and non-infected matched control cells were cultured in vitro. At day 14 post-infection, a proton nuclear magnetic resonance-based metabonomic approach was used to differentiate the metabonomic profiles of 28 independent intracellular samples from Borna disease virus-infected cells (n = 14 and matched control cells (n = 14. Partial least squares discriminant analysis was performed to demonstrate that the whole metabonomic patterns enabled discrimination between the two groups, and further statistical testing was applied to determine which individual metabolites displayed significant differences between the two groups. FINDINGS: Metabonomic profiling revealed perturbations in 23 metabolites, 19 of which were deemed individually significant: nine energy metabolites (α-glucose, acetate, choline, creatine, formate, myo-inositol, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, pyruvate, succinate and ten amino acids (aspartate, glutamate, glutamine, glycine, histidine, isoleucine, phenylalanine, threonine, tyrosine, valine. Partial least squares discriminant analysis demonstrated that the whole metabolic patterns enabled statistical discrimination between the two groups. CONCLUSION: Borna disease viral infection perturbs the metabonomic profiles of several metabolites in human oligodendroglia cells cultured in vitro. The findings suggest that Borna disease virus manipulates the host cell's metabolic network to support viral replication and proliferation.

  19. Some Suggestions to Establish Science and Technical Human Resource Statistics in China%建立我国科技人力资源统计的建议

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    杜谦; 宋卫国; 高昌林

    2004-01-01

    This paper mainly analyses the international trends, the domestic situation and existing problemx of the statistics on S&T human resource nowadays. Based on that, it offers someations to set up and to improve the statistics on S&T human resource in China.

  20. G protein-coupled receptor mutations and human genetic disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Miles D; Hendy, Geoffrey N; Percy, Maire E; Bichet, Daniel G; Cole, David E C

    2014-01-01

    Genetic variations in G protein-coupled receptor genes (GPCRs) disrupt GPCR function in a wide variety of human genetic diseases. In vitro strategies and animal models have been used to identify the molecular pathologies underlying naturally occurring GPCR mutations. Inactive, overactive, or constitutively active receptors have been identified that result in pathology. These receptor variants may alter ligand binding, G protein coupling, receptor desensitization and receptor recycling. Receptor systems discussed include rhodopsin, thyrotropin, parathyroid hormone, melanocortin, follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone, gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GNRHR), adrenocorticotropic hormone, vasopressin, endothelin-β, purinergic, and the G protein associated with asthma (GPRA or neuropeptide S receptor 1 (NPSR1)). The role of activating and inactivating calcium-sensing receptor (CaSR) mutations is discussed in detail with respect to familial hypocalciuric hypercalcemia (FHH) and autosomal dominant hypocalemia (ADH). The CASR mutations have been associated with epilepsy. Diseases caused by the genetic disruption of GPCR functions are discussed in the context of their potential to be selectively targeted by drugs that rescue altered receptors. Examples of drugs developed as a result of targeting GPCRs mutated in disease include: calcimimetics and calcilytics, therapeutics targeting melanocortin receptors in obesity, interventions that alter GNRHR loss from the cell surface in idiopathic hypogonadotropic hypogonadism and novel drugs that might rescue the P2RY12 receptor congenital bleeding phenotype. De-orphanization projects have identified novel disease-associated receptors, such as NPSR1 and GPR35. The identification of variants in these receptors provides genetic reagents useful in drug screens. Discussion of the variety of GPCRs that are disrupted in monogenic Mendelian disorders provides the basis for examining the significance of common

  1. Soluble Fn14 Is Detected and Elevated in Mouse and Human Kidney Disease.

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    M Nusrat Sharif

    Full Text Available The cytokine TWEAK and its cognate receptor Fn14 are members of the TNF/TNFR superfamily and are upregulated in tissue injury to mediate local tissue responses including inflammation and tissue remodeling. We found that in various models of kidney disease, Fn14 expression (mRNA and protein is upregulated in the kidney. These models include: lupus nephritis mouse models (Nephrotoxic serum Transfer Nephritis and MRL.Faslpr/lpr, acute kidney injury models (Ischemia reperfusion injury and Folic acid injury, and a ZSF-1 diabetic nephropathy rat model. Fn14 expression levels correlate with disease severity as measured by disease histology. We have also shown for the first time the detection of soluble Fn14 (sFn14 in the urine and serum of mice. Importantly, we found the sFn14 levels are markedly increased in the diseased mice and are correlated with disease biomarkers including proteinuria and MCP-1. We have also detected sFn14 in human plasma and urine. Moreover, sFn14 levels, in urine are significantly increased in DN patients and correlated with proteinuria and MCP-1 levels. Thus our data not only confirm the up-regulation of Fn14/TWEAK pathway in kidney diseases, but also suggest a novel mechanism for its regulation by the generation of sFn14. The correlation of sFn14 levels and disease severity suggest that sFn14 may serve as a potential biomarker for both acute and chronic kidney diseases.

  2. Profiling of Plasma Metabolites Suggests Altered Mitochondrial Fuel Usage and Remodeling of Sphingolipid Metabolism in Individuals With Type 2 Diabetes and Kidney Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian-Jun Liu

    2017-05-01

    Discussion: DKD is associated with altered fuel substrate use and remodeling of sphingolipid metabolism in T2DM with DKD. Associations of albuminuria and impaired filtration function with distinct metabolomic signatures suggest different pathophysiology underlying these 2 manifestations of DKD.

  3. Proteome analysis of human substantia nigra in Parkinson's disease

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    Werner Cornelius J

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Parkinson's disease (PD is the most common neurodegenerative disorder involving the motor system. Although not being the only region involved in PD, affection of the substantia nigra and its projections is responsible for some of the most debilitating features of the disease. To further advance a comprehensive understanding of nigral pathology, we conducted a tissue based comparative proteome study of healthy and diseased human substantia nigra. Results The gross number of differentially regulated proteins in PD was 221. In total, we identified 37 proteins, of which 16 were differentially expressed. Identified differential proteins comprised elements of iron metabolism (H-ferritin and glutathione-related redox metabolism (GST M3, GST P1, GST O1, including novel redox proteins (SH3BGRL. Additionally, many glial or related proteins were found to be differentially regulated in PD (GFAP, GMFB, galectin-1, sorcin, as well as proteins belonging to metabolic pathways sparsely described in PD, such as adenosyl homocysteinase (methylation, aldehyde dehydrogenase 1 and cellular retinol-binding protein 1 (aldehyde metabolism. Further differentially regulated proteins included annexin V, beta-tubulin cofactor A, coactosin-like protein and V-type ATPase subunit 1. Proteins that were similarly expressed in healthy or diseased substantia nigra comprised housekeeping proteins such as COX5A, Rho GDI alpha, actin gamma 1, creatin-kinase B, lactate dehydrogenase B, disulfide isomerase ER-60, Rab GDI beta, methyl glyoxalase 1 (AGE metabolism and glutamine synthetase. Interestingly, also DJ-1 and UCH-L1 were expressed similarly. Furthermore, proteins believed to serve as internal standards were found to be expressed in a constant manner, such as 14-3-3 epsilon and hCRMP-2, thus lending further validity to our results. Conclusion Using an approach encompassing high sensitivity and high resolution, we show that alterations of SN in PD include many

  4. Integrated Management of Damping-off, Root and/or Stem Rot Diseases of Chickpea and Efficacy of the Suggested Formula

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    Montaser Fawzy ABDEL-MONAIM

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Eleven fungal isolates were isolated from naturally infected chickpea roots collected from different locations in New Valley Governorate (Egypt. The isolated fungi were purified and identified as Rhizoctonia solani (5 isolates, Fusarium solani (4 isolates and Sclerotinia sclerotiorum (2 isolates. The isolated fungi proved their pathogenicity on cv. Giza 3. Response of chickpea cvs. Giza 1, Giza 2, Giza 3, Giza 4, Giza 88, Giza 195, Giza 531 to infection by the tested fungi was significantly varied. Giza 1 was the most resistant one followed by Giza 531, while the other tested cvs. were highly susceptible. Seven biocontrol agents, namely Bacillus subtilis, B. megaterium, B. cereus, Trichoderma viride, T. harzianum, Aspergillus sp., Penicillium sp. isolated from chickpea rhizosphere, were tested for their antagonistic action against the tested pathogens. B. subtilis isolate BSM1, B. megaterium isolate TVM5, T. viride isolate TVM2 and T. harzianum isolate THM4 were the most antagonistic ones to the tested fungi in vitro, while the other isolates were moderate or weak antagonists. The most antagonistic isolates as well as the commercial biocide Rhizo-N were applied as seed treatment for controlling damping-off, root and/or stem rot diseases caused by the tested fungi under greenhouse conditions. The obtained data showed that all tested antagonistic isolates were able to cause significant reduction of damping-off, root and/or stem rot diseases in chickpea plants. T. viride (isolate TVM2 and B. megaterium (isolate BMM5 proved to be the most effective isolates for controlling the diseases. Under field condition, the obtained data indicated that all the tested antagonistic isolates significantly reduced damping-off, root and/or stem rot. T. viride (isolate TVM2 and B. megaterium (isolate BMM5 recorded the highest reduction of damping-off, root and/or stem rot in all sowing dates. Sowing of treated seeds with bioagents in first of November gave the

  5. Evolutionary analysis of foot-and-mouth disease virus serotype SAT 1 isolates from east africa suggests two independent introductions from southern africa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sangula, Abraham K.; Belsham, Graham; Muwanika, Vincent B.

    2010-01-01

    appreciation of the epidemiological status of serotype SAT 1 virus in the region, we inferred its evolutionary and phylogeographic history by means of genealogy-based coalescent methods using 53 VP1 coding sequences covering a sampling period from 1948-2007. Results: The VP1 coding sequence of 11 serotype SAT...... and highlight the importance of a regional approach to trans-boundary animal disease control in order to monitor circulating strains and apply appropriate vaccines....

  6. Clinical and biochemical profiles suggest fibromuscular dysplasia is a systemic disease with altered TGF-β expression and connective tissue features.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ganesh, Santhi K; Morissette, Rachel; Xu, Zhi; Schoenhoff, Florian; Griswold, Benjamin F; Yang, Jiandong; Tong, Lan; Yang, Min-Lee; Hunker, Kristina; Sloper, Leslie; Kuo, Shinie; Raza, Rafi; Milewicz, Dianna M; Francomano, Clair A; Dietz, Harry C; Van Eyk, Jennifer; McDonnell, Nazli B

    2014-08-01

    Fibromuscular dysplasia (FMD) is a rare, nonatherosclerotic arterial disease for which the molecular basis is unknown. We comprehensively studied 47 subjects with FMD, including physical examination, spine magnetic resonance imaging, bone densitometry, and brain magnetic resonance angiography. Inflammatory biomarkers in plasma and transforming growth factor β (TGF-β) cytokines in patient-derived dermal fibroblasts were measured by ELISA. Arterial pathology other than medial fibrodysplasia with multifocal stenosis included cerebral aneurysm, found in 12.8% of subjects. Extra-arterial pathology included low bone density (P<0.001); early onset degenerative spine disease (95.7%); increased incidence of Chiari I malformation (6.4%) and dural ectasia (42.6%); and physical examination findings of a mild connective tissue dysplasia (95.7%). Screening for mutations causing known genetically mediated arteriopathies was unrevealing. We found elevated plasma TGF-β1 (P=0.009), TGF-β2 (P=0.004) and additional inflammatory markers, and increased TGF-β1 (P=0.0009) and TGF-β2 (P=0.0001) secretion in dermal fibroblast cell lines from subjects with FMD compared to age- and gender-matched controls. Detailed phenotyping of patients with FMD allowed us to demonstrate that FMD is a systemic disease with alterations in common with the spectrum of genetic syndromes that involve altered TGF-β signaling and offers TGF-β as a marker of FMD.

  7. Transgenic Nonhuman Primate Models for Human Diseases: Approaches and Contributing Factors

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yongchang Chen; Yuyu Niu; Weizhi Ji

    2012-01-01

    Nonhuman primates (NHPs) provide powerful experimental models to study human development,cognitive functions and disturbances as well as complex behavior,because of their genetic and physiological similarities to humans.Therefore,NHPs are appropriate models for the study of human diseases,such as neurodegenerative diseases including Parkinson's,Alzheimer's and Huntington's diseases,which occur as a result of genetic mutations.However,such diseass afflicting humans do not occur naturally in NHPs.So transgenic NHPs need to be established to understand the etiology of disease pathology and pathogenesis.Compared to rodent genetic models,the generation of transgenic NHPs for human diseases is inefficient,and only a transgenic monkey model for Huntington's disease has been reported.This review focuses on potential approaches and contributing factors for generating transgenic NHPs to study human diseases.

  8. Network properties of complex human disease genes identified through genome-wide association studies.

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    Fredrik Barrenas

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Previous studies of network properties of human disease genes have mainly focused on monogenic diseases or cancers and have suffered from discovery bias. Here we investigated the network properties of complex disease genes identified by genome-wide association studies (GWAs, thereby eliminating discovery bias. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We derived a network of complex diseases (n = 54 and complex disease genes (n = 349 to explore the shared genetic architecture of complex diseases. We evaluated the centrality measures of complex disease genes in comparison with essential and monogenic disease genes in the human interactome. The complex disease network showed that diseases belonging to the same disease class do not always share common disease genes. A possible explanation could be that the variants with higher minor allele frequency and larger effect size identified using GWAs constitute disjoint parts of the allelic spectra of similar complex diseases. The complex disease gene network showed high modularity with the size of the largest component being smaller than expected from a randomized null-model. This is consistent with limited sharing of genes between diseases. Complex disease genes are less central than the essential and monogenic disease genes in the human interactome. Genes associated with the same disease, compared to genes associated with different diseases, more often tend to share a protein-protein interaction and a Gene Ontology Biological Process. CONCLUSIONS: This indicates that network neighbors of known disease genes form an important class of candidates for identifying novel genes for the same disease.

  9. Network properties of complex human disease genes identified through genome-wide association studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrenas, Fredrik; Chavali, Sreenivas; Holme, Petter; Mobini, Reza; Benson, Mikael

    2009-11-30

    Previous studies of network properties of human disease genes have mainly focused on monogenic diseases or cancers and have suffered from discovery bias. Here we investigated the network properties of complex disease genes identified by genome-wide association studies (GWAs), thereby eliminating discovery bias. We derived a network of complex diseases (n = 54) and complex disease genes (n = 349) to explore the shared genetic architecture of complex diseases. We evaluated the centrality measures of complex disease genes in comparison with essential and monogenic disease genes in the human interactome. The complex disease network showed that diseases belonging to the same disease class do not always share common disease genes. A possible explanation could be that the variants with higher minor allele frequency and larger effect size identified using GWAs constitute disjoint parts of the allelic spectra of similar complex diseases. The complex disease gene network showed high modularity with the size of the largest component being smaller than expected from a randomized null-model. This is consistent with limited sharing of genes between diseases. Complex disease genes are less central than the essential and monogenic disease genes in the human interactome. Genes associated with the same disease, compared to genes associated with different diseases, more often tend to share a protein-protein interaction and a Gene Ontology Biological Process. This indicates that network neighbors of known disease genes form an important class of candidates for identifying novel genes for the same disease.

  10. Integrative Analysis of Multi-omics Data for Discovery and Functional Studies of Complex Human Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Yan V; Hu, Yi-Juan

    2016-01-01

    Complex and dynamic networks of molecules are involved in human diseases. High-throughput technologies enable omics studies interrogating thousands to millions of makers with similar biochemical properties (eg, transcriptomics for RNA transcripts). However, a single layer of "omics" can only provide limited insights into the biological mechanisms of a disease. In the case of genome-wide association studies, although thousands of single nucleotide polymorphisms have been identified for complex diseases and traits, the functional implications and mechanisms of the associated loci are largely unknown. Additionally, the genomic variants alone are not able to explain the changing disease risk across the life span. DNA, RNA, protein, and metabolite often have complementary roles to jointly perform a certain biological function. Such complementary effects and synergistic interactions between omic layers in the life course can only be captured by integrative study of multiple molecular layers. Building upon the success in single-omics discovery research, population studies started adopting the multi-omics approach to better understanding the molecular function and disease etiology. Multi-omics approaches integrate data obtained from different omic levels to understand their interrelation and combined influence on the disease processes. Here, we summarize major omics approaches available in population research, and review integrative approaches and methodologies interrogating multiple omic layers, which enhance the gene discovery and functional analysis of human diseases. We seek to provide analytical recommendations for different types of multi-omics data and study designs to guide the emerging multi-omic research, and to suggest improvement of the existing analytical methods. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Mitochondrial aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases in human disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konovalova, Svetlana; Tyynismaa, Henna

    2013-04-01

    Mitochondrial aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases (mtARSs) are essential in the process of transferring genetic information from mitochondrial DNA to the complexes of the oxidative phosphorylation system. These synthetases perform an integral step in the initiation of mitochondrial protein synthesis by charging tRNAs with their cognate amino acids. All mtARSs are encoded by nuclear genes, nine of which have recently been described as disease genes for mitochondrial disorders. Unexpectedly, the clinical presentations of these diseases are highly specific to the affected synthetase. Encephalopathy is the most common manifestation but again with gene-specific outcomes. Other clinical presentations include myopathy with anemia, cardiomyopathy, tubulopathy and hearing loss with female ovarian dysgenesis. Here we review the described mutation types and the associated patient phenotypes. The identified mutation spectrum suggests that only mutation types that allow some residual tRNA-charging activity can result in the described mtARS diseases but the molecular mechanisms behind the selective tissue involvement are not currently understood.

  12. Human disease resulting from exposure to electromagnetic fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carpenter, David O

    2013-01-01

    Electromagnetic fields (EMFs) include everything from cosmic rays through visible light to the electric and magnetic fields associated with electricity. While the high frequency fields have sufficient energy to cause cancer, the question of whether there are human health hazards associated with communication radiofrequency (RF) EMFs and those associated with use of electricity remains controversial. The issue is more important than ever given the rapid increase in the use of cell phones and other wireless devices. This review summarizes the evidence stating that excessive exposure to magnetic fields from power lines and other sources of electric current increases the risk of development of some cancers and neurodegenerative diseases, and that excessive exposure to RF radiation increases risk of cancer, male infertility, and neurobehavioral abnormalities. The relative impact of various sources of exposure, the great range of standards for EMF exposure, and the costs of doing nothing are also discussed.

  13. Hepcidin modulation in human diseases: From research to clinic

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Alberto Piperno; Raffaella Mariani; Paola Trombini; Domenico Girelli

    2009-01-01

    By modulating hepcidin production, an organism controls intestinal iron absorption, iron uptake and mobilization from stores to meet body iron need. In recent years there has been important advancement in our knowledge of hepcidin regulation that also has implications for understanding the physiopathology of some human disorders. Since the discovery of hepcidin and the demonstration of its pivotal role in iron homeostasis, there has been a substantial interest in developing a reliable assay of the hormone in biological fluids. Measurement of hepcidin in biological fluids can improve our understanding of iron diseases and be a useful tool for diagnosis and clinical management of these disorders. We reviewed the literature and our own research on hepcidin to give an updated status of the situation in this rapidly evolving field.

  14. Interleukin-33 and Inflammatory Bowel Diseases: Lessons from Human Studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tiago Nunes

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Interleukin- (IL- 33 is a widely expressed cytokine present in different cell types, such as epithelial, mesenchymal, and inflammatory cells, supporting a predominant role in innate immunity. IL-33 can function as a proinflammatory cytokine inducing Th2 type of immune response being involved with the defense against parasitic infections of the gastrointestinal tract. In addition, it has been proposed that IL-33 can act as a signaling molecule alerting the immune system of danger or tissue damage. Recently, in the intestinal mucosa, overexpression of IL-33 has been reported in samples from patients with inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD. This review highlights the available data regarding IL-33 in human IBD and discusses emerging roles for IL-33 as a key modulator of intestinal inflammation.

  15. Molecular mechanism of size control in development and human diseases

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xiaolong Yang; Tian Xu

    2011-01-01

    How multicellular organisms control their size is a fundamental question that fascinated generations of biologists.In the past 10 years, tremendous progress has been made toward our understanding of the molecular mechanism underlying size control. Original studies from Drosophila showed that in addition to extrinsic nutritional and hormonal cues, intrinsic mechanisms also play important roles in the control of organ size during development. Several novel signaling pathways such as insulin and Hippo-LATS signaling pathways have been identified that control organ size by regulating cell size and/or cell number through modulation of cell growth, cell division, and cell death. Later studies using mammalian cell and mouse models also demonstrated that the signaling pathways identified in flies are also conserved in mammals. Significantly, recent studies showed that dysregulation of size control plays important roles in the development of many human diseases sucha as cancer,diabetes,and hypertrophy.

  16. Targeting Splicing in the Treatment of Human Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc Suñé-Pou

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available The tightly regulated process of precursor messenger RNA (pre-mRNA alternative splicing (AS is a key mechanism in the regulation of gene expression. Defects in this regulatory process affect cellular functions and are the cause of many human diseases. Recent advances in our understanding of splicing regulation have led to the development of new tools for manipulating splicing for therapeutic purposes. Several tools, including antisense oligonucleotides and trans-splicing, have been developed to target and alter splicing to correct misregulated gene expression or to modulate transcript isoform levels. At present, deregulated AS is recognized as an important area for therapeutic intervention. Here, we summarize the major hallmarks of the splicing process, the clinical implications that arise from alterations in this process, and the current tools that can be used to deliver, target, and correct deficiencies of this key pre-mRNA processing event.

  17. Controllability analysis of the directed human protein interaction network identifies disease genes and drug targets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vinayagam, Arunachalam; Gibson, Travis E; Lee, Ho-Joon; Yilmazel, Bahar; Roesel, Charles; Hu, Yanhui; Kwon, Young; Sharma, Amitabh; Liu, Yang-Yu; Perrimon, Norbert; Barabási, Albert-László

    2016-05-03

    The protein-protein interaction (PPI) network is crucial for cellular information processing and decision-making. With suitable inputs, PPI networks drive the cells to diverse functional outcomes such as cell proliferation or cell death. Here, we characterize the structural controllability of a large directed human PPI network comprising 6,339 proteins and 34,813 interactions. This network allows us to classify proteins as "indispensable," "neutral," or "dispensable," which correlates to increasing, no effect, or decreasing the number of driver nodes in the network upon removal of that protein. We find that 21% of the proteins in the PPI network are indispensable. Interestingly, these indispensable proteins are the primary targets of disease-causing mutations, human viruses, and drugs, suggesting that altering a network's control property is critical for the transition between healthy and disease states. Furthermore, analyzing copy number alterations data from 1,547 cancer patients reveals that 56 genes that are frequently amplified or deleted in nine different cancers are indispensable. Among the 56 genes, 46 of them have not been previously associated with cancer. This suggests that controllability analysis is very useful in identifying novel disease genes and potential drug targets.

  18. Rare and low-frequency variants in human common diseases and other complex traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lettre, Guillaume

    2014-11-01

    In humans, most of the genetic variation is rare and often population-specific. Whereas the role of rare genetic variants in familial monogenic diseases is firmly established, we are only now starting to explore the contribution of this class of genetic variation to human common diseases and other complex traits. Such large-scale experiments are possible due to the development of next-generation DNA sequencing. Early findings suggested that rare and low-frequency coding variation might have a large effect on human phenotypes (eg, PCSK9 missense variants on low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol and coronary heart diseases). This observation sparked excitement in prognostic and diagnostic medicine, as well as in genetics-driven strategies to develop new drugs. In this review, I describe results and present initial conclusions regarding some of the recent rare and low-frequency variant discoveries. We can already assume that most phenotype-associated rare and low-frequency variants have modest-to-weak phenotypical effect. Thus, we will need large cohorts to identify them, as for common variants in genome-wide association studies. As we expand the list of associated rare and low-frequency variants, we can also better recognise the current limitations: we need to develop better statistical methods to optimally test association with rare variants, including non-coding variation, and to account for potential confounders such as population stratification.

  19. Impacts of environment on human diseases: a web service for the human exposome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karssenberg, Derek; Vaartjes, Ilonca; Kamphuis, Carlijn; Strak, Maciek; Schmitz, Oliver; Soenario, Ivan; de Jong, Kor

    2017-04-01

    The exposome is the totality of human environmental exposures from conception onwards. Identifying the contribution of the exposome to human diseases and health is a key issue in health research. Examples include the effect of air pollution exposure on cardiovascular diseases, the impact of disease vectors (mosquitos) and surface hydrology exposure on malaria, and the effect of fast food restaurant exposure on obesity. Essential to health research is to disentangle the effects of the exposome and genome on health. Ultimately this requires quantifying the totality of all human exposures, for each individual in the studied human population. This poses a massive challenge to geoscientists, as environmental data are required at a high spatial and temporal resolution, with a large spatial and temporal coverage representing the area inhabited by the population studied and the time span representing several decades. Then, these data need to be combined with space-time paths of individuals to calculate personal exposures for each individual in the population. The Global and Geo Health Data Centre is taking this challenge by providing a web service capable of enriching population data with exposome information. Our web service can generate environmental information either from archived national (up to 5 m spatial and 1 h temporal resolution) and global environmental information or generated on the fly using environmental models running as microservices. On top of these environmental data services runs an individual exposure service enabling health researchers to select different spatial and temporal aggregation methods and to upload space-time paths of individuals. These are then enriched with personal exposures and eventually returned to the user. We illustrate the service in an example of individual exposures to air pollutants calculated from hyper resolution air pollution data and various approaches to estimate space-time paths of individuals.

  20. Acanthamoeba spp. as agents of disease in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marciano-Cabral, Francine; Cabral, Guy

    2003-04-01

    Acanthamoeba spp. are free-living amebae that inhabit a variety of air, soil, and water environments. However, these amebae can also act as opportunistic as well as nonopportunistic pathogens. They are the causative agents of granulomatous amebic encephalitis and amebic keratitis and have been associated with cutaneous lesions and sinusitis. Immuno compromised individuals, including AIDS patients, are particularly susceptible to infections with Acanthamoeba. The immune defense mechanisms that operate against Acanthamoeba have not been well characterized, but it has been proposed that both innate and acquired immunity play a role. The ameba's life cycle includes an active feeding trophozoite stage and a dormant cyst stage. Trophozoites feed on bacteria, yeast, and algae. However, both trophozoites and cysts can retain viable bacteria and may serve as reservoirs for bacteria with human pathogenic potential. Diagnosis of infection includes direct microscopy of wet mounts of cerebrospinal fluid or stained smears of cerebrospinal fluid sediment, light or electron microscopy of tissues, in vitro cultivation of Acanthamoeba, and histological assessment of frozen or paraffin-embedded sections of brain or cutaneous lesion biopsy material. Immunocytochemistry, chemifluorescent dye staining, PCR, and analysis of DNA sequence variation also have been employed for laboratory diagnosis. Treatment of Acanthamoeba infections has met with mixed results. However, chlorhexidine gluconate, alone or in combination with propamidene isethionate, is effective in some patients. Furthermore, effective treatment is complicated since patients may present with underlying disease and Acanthamoeba infection may not be recognized. Since an increase in the number of cases of Acanthamoeba infections has occurred worldwide, these protozoa have become increasingly important as agents of human disease.

  1. Diagnosis of Parkinson's disease based on disease-specific autoantibody profiles in human sera.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min Han

    Full Text Available Parkinson's disease (PD, hallmarked by a variety of motor disorders and neurological decline, is the second most common neurodegenerative disease worldwide. Currently, no diagnostic test exists to identify sufferers, and physicians must rely on a combination of subjective physical and neurological assessments to make a diagnosis. The discovery of definitive blood-borne biomarkers would be a major step towards early and reliable diagnosis. Despite attention devoted to this search, such biomarkers have remained elusive. In the present study, we used human protein microarrays to reveal serum autoantibodies that are differentially expressed among PD and control subjects. The diagnostic significance of each of these autoantibodies was evaluated, resulting in the selection of 10 autoantibody biomarkers that can effectively differentiate PD sera from control sera with a sensitivity of 93.1% and specificity of 100%. PD sera were also distinguishable from sera obtained from Alzheimer's disease, breast cancer, and multiple sclerosis patients with accuracies of 86.0%, 96.6%, and 100%, respectively. Results demonstrate that serum autoantibodies can be used as highly specific and accurate biomarkers for PD diagnosis throughout the course of the disease.

  2. [Tree shrews under the spot light: emerging model of human diseases].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Lin; Zhang, Yun; Liang, Bin; Lü, Long-Bao; Chen, Ce-Shi; Chen, Yong-Bin; Zhou, Ju-Min; Yao, Yong-Gang

    2013-04-01

    Animal models are indispensible in biomedical research and have made tremendous contributions to answer fundamental questions on human biology, disease mechanisms, and to the development of new drugs and diagnostic tools. Due to the limitations of rodent models in translational medicine, tree shrews (Tupaia belangeri chinensis), the closest relative of primates, have attracted increasing attention in modeling human diseases and therapeutic responses. Here we discuss the recent progress in tree shrew biology and the development of tree shrews as human disease models including infectious diseases, metabolic diseases, neurological and psychiatric diseases, and cancers. Meanwhile, the current problems and future perspectives of the tree shrew model are explored.

  3. Human borna disease virus infection impacts host proteome and histone lysine acetylation in human oligodendroglia cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Xia [Department of Neurology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Department of Neurology, The Fifth People' s Hospital of Shanghai, School of Medicine, Fudan University, Shanghai, 200240 (China); Zhao, Libo [Department of Neurology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Department of Neurology, The Third People' s Hospital of Chongqing, 400014 (China); Yang, Yongtao [Department of Neurology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Chongqing Key Laboratory of Neurobiology, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, 400016 (China); Institute of Neuroscience, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, 400016 (China); Bode, Liv [Bornavirus Research Group affiliated to the Free University of Berlin, Berlin (Germany); Huang, Hua [Department of Neurology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Chongqing Key Laboratory of Neurobiology, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, 400016 (China); Institute of Neuroscience, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, 400016 (China); Liu, Chengyu [Chongqing Key Laboratory of Neurobiology, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, 400016 (China); Institute of Neuroscience, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, 400016 (China); Huang, Rongzhong [Department of Rehabilitative Medicine, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, 400010 (China); Zhang, Liang [Department of Neurology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016 (China); Chongqing Key Laboratory of Neurobiology, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, 400016 (China); Institute of Neuroscience, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, 400016 (China); and others

    2014-09-15

    Background: Borna disease virus (BDV) replicates in the nucleus and establishes persistent infections in mammalian hosts. A human BDV strain was used to address the first time, how BDV infection impacts the proteome and histone lysine acetylation (Kac) of human oligodendroglial (OL) cells, thus allowing a better understanding of infection-driven pathophysiology in vitro. Methods: Proteome and histone lysine acetylation were profiled through stable isotope labeling for cell culture (SILAC)-based quantitative proteomics. The quantifiable proteome was annotated using bioinformatics. Histone acetylation changes were validated by biochemistry assays. Results: Post BDV infection, 4383 quantifiable differential proteins were identified and functionally annotated to metabolism pathways, immune response, DNA replication, DNA repair, and transcriptional regulation. Sixteen of the thirty identified Kac sites in core histones presented altered acetylation levels post infection. Conclusions: BDV infection using a human strain impacted the whole proteome and histone lysine acetylation in OL cells. - Highlights: • A human strain of BDV (BDV Hu-H1) was used to infect human oligodendroglial cells (OL cells). • This study is the first to reveal the host proteomic and histone Kac profiles in BDV-infected OL cells. • BDV infection affected the expression of many transcription factors and several HATs and HDACs.

  4. Human Microbiome and Learning Healthcare Systems: Integrating Research and Precision Medicine for Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chuong, Kim H; Mack, David R; Stintzi, Alain; O'Doherty, Kieran C

    2017-03-10

    Healthcare institutions face widespread challenges of delivering high-quality and cost-effective care, while keeping up with rapid advances in biomedical knowledge and technologies. Moreover, there is increased emphasis on developing personalized or precision medicine targeted to individuals or groups of patients who share a certain biomarker signature. Learning healthcare systems (LHS) have been proposed for integration of research and clinical practice to fill major knowledge gaps, improve care, reduce healthcare costs, and provide precision care. To date, much discussion in this context has focused on the potential of human genomic data, and not yet on human microbiome data. Rapid advances in human microbiome research suggest that profiling of, and interventions on, the human microbiome can provide substantial opportunity for improved diagnosis, therapeutics, risk management, and risk stratification. In this study, we discuss a potential role for microbiome science in LHSs. We first review the key elements of LHSs, and discuss possibilities of Big Data and patient engagement. We then consider potentials and challenges of integrating human microbiome research into clinical practice as part of an LHS. With rapid growth in human microbiome research, patient-specific microbial data will begin to contribute in important ways to precision medicine. Hence, we discuss how patient-specific microbial data can help guide therapeutic decisions and identify novel effective approaches for precision care of inflammatory bowel disease. To the best of our knowledge, this expert analysis makes an original contribution with new insights poised at the emerging intersection of LHSs, microbiome science, and postgenomics medicine.

  5. Comprehensive Control of Human Papillomavirus Infections and Related Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosch, F. Xavier; Broker, Thomas R.; Forman, David; Moscicki, Anna-Barbara; Gillison, Maura L.; Doorbar, John; Stern, Peter L.; Stanley, Margaret; Arbyn, Marc; Poljak, Mario; Cuzick, Jack; Castle, Philip E.; Schiller, John T.; Markowitz, Lauri E.; Fisher, William A.; Canfell, Karen; Denny, Lynette A.; Franco, Eduardo L.; Steben, Marc; Kane, Mark A.; Schiffman, Mark; Meijer, Chris J.L.M.; Sankaranarayanan, Rengaswamy; Castellsagué, Xavier; Kim, Jane J.; Brotons, Maria; Alemany, Laia; Albero, Ginesa; Diaz, Mireia; de Sanjosé, Silvia

    2014-01-01

    Infection with human papillomavirus (HPV) is recognized as one of the major causes of infection-related cancer worldwide, as well as the causal factor in other diseases. Strong evidence for a causal etiology with HPV has been stated by the International Agency for Research on Cancer for cancers of the cervix uteri, penis, vulva, vagina, anus and oropharynx (including base of the tongue and tonsils). Of the estimated 12.7 million new cancers occurring in 2008 worldwide, 4.8% were attributable to HPV infection, with substantially higher incidence and mortality rates seen in developing versus developed countries. In recent years, we have gained tremendous knowledge about HPVs and their interactions with host cells, tissues and the immune system; have validated and implemented strategies for safe and efficacious prophylactic vaccination against HPV infections; have developed increasingly sensitive and specific molecular diagnostic tools for HPV detection for use in cervical cancer screening; and have substantially increased global awareness of HPV and its many associated diseases in women, men, and children. While these achievements exemplify the success of biomedical research in generating important public health interventions, they also generate new and daunting challenges: costs of HPV prevention and medical care, the implementation of what is technically possible, socio-political resistance to prevention opportunities, and the very wide ranges of national economic capabilities and health care systems. Gains and challenges faced in the quest for comprehensive control of HPV infection and HPV-related cancers and other disease are summarized in this review. The information presented may be viewed in terms of a reframed paradigm of prevention of cervical cancer and other HPV-related diseases that will include strategic combinations of at least four major components: 1) routine introduction of HPV vaccines to women in all countries, 2) extension and simplification of

  6. Analysis of the robustness of network-based disease-gene prioritization methods reveals redundancy in the human interactome and functional diversity of disease-genes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emre Guney

    Full Text Available Complex biological systems usually pose a trade-off between robustness and fragility where a small number of perturbations can substantially disrupt the system. Although biological systems are robust against changes in many external and internal conditions, even a single mutation can perturb the system substantially, giving rise to a pathophenotype. Recent advances in identifying and analyzing the sequential variations beneath human disorders help to comprehend a systemic view of the mechanisms underlying various disease phenotypes. Network-based disease-gene prioritization methods rank the relevance of genes in a disease under the hypothesis that genes whose proteins interact with each other tend to exhibit similar phenotypes. In this study, we have tested the robustness of several network-based disease-gene prioritization methods with respect to the perturbations of the system using various disease phenotypes from the Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man database. These perturbations have been introduced either in the protein-protein interaction network or in the set of known disease-gene associations. As the network-based disease-gene prioritization methods are based on the connectivity between known disease-gene associations, we have further used these methods to categorize the pathophenotypes with respect to the recoverability of hidden disease-genes. Our results have suggested that, in general, disease-genes are connected through multiple paths in the human interactome. Moreover, even when these paths are disturbed, network-based prioritization can reveal hidden disease-gene associations in some pathophenotypes such as breast cancer, cardiomyopathy, diabetes, leukemia, parkinson disease and obesity to a greater extend compared to the rest of the pathophenotypes tested in this study. Gene Ontology (GO analysis highlighted the role of functional diversity for such diseases.

  7. Concordance analysis of microarray studies identifies representative gene expression changes in Parkinson's disease: a comparison of 33 human and animal studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oerton, Erin; Bender, Andreas

    2017-03-23

    As the popularity of transcriptomic analysis has grown, the reported lack of concordance between different studies of the same condition has become a growing concern, raising questions as to the representativeness of different study types, such as non-human disease models or studies of surrogate tissues, to gene expression in the human condition. In a comparison of 33 microarray studies of Parkinson's disease, correlation and clustering analyses were used to determine the factors influencing concordance between studies, including agreement between different tissue types, different microarray platforms, and between neurotoxic and genetic disease models and human Parkinson's disease. Concordance over all studies is low, with correlation of only 0.05 between differential gene expression signatures on average, but increases within human patients and studies of the same tissue type, rising to 0.38 for studies of human substantia nigra. Agreement of animal models, however, is dependent on model type. Studies of brain tissue from Parkinson's disease patients (specifically the substantia nigra) form a distinct group, showing patterns of differential gene expression noticeably different from that in non-brain tissues and animal models of Parkinson's disease; while comparison with other brain diseases (Alzheimer's disease and brain cancer) suggests that the mixed study types display a general signal of neurodegenerative disease. A meta-analysis of these 33 microarray studies demonstrates the greater ability of studies in humans and highly-affected tissues to identify genes previously known to be associated with Parkinson's disease. The observed clustering and concordance results suggest the existence of a 'characteristic' signal of Parkinson's disease found in significantly affected human tissues in humans. These results help to account for the consistency (or lack thereof) so far observed in microarray studies of Parkinson's disease, and act as a guide to the selection of

  8. Alkaptonuria is a novel human secondary amyloidogenic disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millucci, Lia; Spreafico, Adriano; Tinti, Laura; Braconi, Daniela; Ghezzi, Lorenzo; Paccagnini, Eugenio; Bernardini, Giulia; Amato, Loredana; Laschi, Marcella; Selvi, Enrico; Galeazzi, Mauro; Mannoni, Alessandro; Benucci, Maurizio; Lupetti, Pietro; Chellini, Federico; Orlandini, Maurizio; Santucci, Annalisa

    2012-11-01

    Alkaptonuria (AKU) is an ultra-rare disease developed from the lack of homogentisic acid oxidase activity, causing homogentisic acid (HGA) accumulation that produces a HGA-melanin ochronotic pigment, of unknown composition. There is no therapy for AKU. Our aim was to verify if AKU implied a secondary amyloidosis. Congo Red, Thioflavin-T staining and TEM were performed to assess amyloid presence in AKU specimens (cartilage, synovia, periumbelical fat, salivary gland) and in HGA-treated human chondrocytes and cartilage. SAA and SAP deposition was examined using immunofluorescence and their levels were evaluated in the patients' plasma by ELISA. 2D electrophoresis was undertaken in AKU cells to evaluate the levels of proteins involved in amyloidogenesis. AKU osteoarticular tissues contained SAA-amyloid in 7/7 patients. Ochronotic pigment and amyloid co-localized in AKU osteoarticular tissues. SAA and SAP composition of the deposits assessed secondary type of amyloidosis. High levels of SAA and SAP were found in AKU patients' plasma. Systemic amyloidosis was assessed by Congo Red staining of patients' abdominal fat and salivary gland. AKU is the second pathology after Parkinson's disease where amyloid is associated with a form of melanin. Aberrant expression of proteins involved in amyloidogenesis has been found in AKU cells. Our findings on alkaptonuria as a novel type II AA amyloidosis open new important perspectives for its therapy, since methotrexate treatment proved to significantly reduce in vitro HGA-induced A-amyloid aggregates.

  9. Immunoglobulin Free Light Chain Dimers in Human Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Batia Kaplan

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Immunoglobulin free light chain (FLC kappa (κ and lambda (λ isotypes exist mainly in monomeric and dimeric forms. Under pathological conditions, the level of FLCs as well as the structure of monomeric and dimeric FLCs and their dimerization properties might be significantly altered. The abnormally high fractions of dimeric FLCs were demonstrated in the serum of patients with multiple myeloma (MM and primary systemic amyloidosis (AL, as well as in the serum of anephric patients. The presence of tetra- and trimolecular complexes formed due to dimer-dimer and dimer-monomer interactions was detected in the myeloma serum. Analysis of the amyloidogenic light chains demonstrated mutations within the dimer interface, thus raising the possibility that these mutations are responsible for amyloidogenicity. Increased κ monomer and dimer levels, as well as a high κ/λ monomer ratio, were typically found in the cerebrospinal fluid from patients with multiple sclerosis (MS. In many MS cases, the elevation of κ FLCs was accompanied by an abnormally high proportion of λ dimers. This review focuses on the disease-related changes of the structure and level of dimeric FLCs, and raises the questions regarding their formation, function, and role in the pathogenesis and diagnosis of human diseases.

  10. Gastrointestinal opportunistic infections in human immunodeficiency virus disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Al Anazi Awadh

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Gastrointestinal (GI opportunistic infections (OIs are commonly encountered at various stages of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV disease. In view of the suppressive nature of the virus and the direct contact with the environment, the GI tract is readily accessible and is a common site for clinical expression of HIV. The subject is presented based on information obtained by electronic searches of peer-reviewed articles in medical journals, Cochrane reviews and PubMed sources. The spectrum of GI OIs ranges from oral lesions of Candidiasis, various lesions of viral infections, hepatobiliary lesions, pancreatitis and anorectal lesions. The manifestations of the disease depend on the level of immunosuppression, as determined by the CD4 counts. The advent of highly active antiretroviral therapy has altered the pattern of presentation, resorting mainly to features of antimicrobial-associated colitis and side effects of antiretroviral drugs. The diagnosis of GI OIs in HIV/ acquired immunodeficiency syndrome patients is usually straightforward. However, subtle presentations require that the physicians should have a high index of suspicion when given the setting of HIV infection.

  11. Human behavioral assessments in current research of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asakawa, Tetsuya; Fang, Huan; Sugiyama, Kenji; Nozaki, Takao; Kobayashi, Susumu; Hong, Zhen; Suzuki, Katsuaki; Mori, Norio; Yang, Yilin; Hua, Fei; Ding, Guanghong; Wen, Guoqiang; Namba, Hiroki; Xia, Ying

    2016-09-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is traditionally classified as a movement disorder because patients mainly complain about motor symptoms. Recently, non-motor symptoms of PD have been recognized by clinicians and scientists as early signs of PD, and they are detrimental factors in the quality of life in advanced PD patients. It is crucial to comprehensively understand the essence of behavioral assessments, from the simplest measurement of certain symptoms to complex neuropsychological tasks. We have recently reviewed behavioral assessments in PD research with animal models (Asakawa et al., 2016). As a companion volume, this article will systematically review the behavioral assessments of motor and non-motor PD symptoms of human patients in current research. The major aims of this article are: (1) promoting a comparative understanding of various behavioral assessments in terms of the principle and measuring indexes; (2) addressing the major strengths and weaknesses of these behavioral assessments for a better selection of tasks/tests in order to avoid biased conclusions due to inappropriate assessments; and (3) presenting new concepts regarding the development of wearable devices and mobile internet in future assessments. In conclusion we emphasize the importance of improving the assessments for non-motor symptoms because of their complex and unique mechanisms in human PD brains.

  12. Newcastle disease virus selectively kills human tumor cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reichard, K W; Lorence, R M; Cascino, C J; Peeples, M E; Walter, R J; Fernando, M B; Reyes, H M; Greager, J A

    1992-05-01

    Newcastle disease virus (NDV), strain 73-T, has previously been shown to be cytolytic to mouse tumor cells. In this study, we have evaluated the ability of NDV to replicate in and kill human tumor cells in culture and in athymic mice. Plaque assays were used to determine the cytolytic activity of NDV on six human tumor cell lines, fibrosarcoma (HT1080), osteosarcoma (KHOS), cervical carcinoma (KB8-5-11), bladder carcinoma (HCV29T), neuroblastoma (IMR32), and Wilm's tumor (G104), and on nine different normal human fibroblast lines. NDV formed plaques on all tumor cells tested as well as on chick embryo cells (CEC), the native host for NDV. Plaques did not form on any of the normal fibroblast lines. To detect NDV replication, virus yield assays were performed which measured virus particles in infected cell culture supernatants. Virus yield increased 10,000-fold within 24 hr in tumor and CEC supernatants. Titers remained near zero in normal fibroblast supernatants. In vivo tumoricidal activity was evaluated in athymic nude Balb-c mice by subcutaneous injection of 9 x 10(6) tumor cells followed by intralesional injection of either live or heat-killed NDV (1.0 x 10(6) plaque forming units [PFU]), or medium. After live NDV treatment, tumor regression occurred in 10 out of 11 mice bearing KB8-5-11 tumors, 8 out of 8 with HT-1080 tumors, and 6 out of 7 with IMR-32 tumors. After treatment with heat-killed NDV no regression occurred (P less than 0.01, Fisher's exact test). Nontumor-bearing mice injected with 1.0 x 10(8) PFU of NDV remained healthy. These results indicate that NDV efficiently and selectively replicates in and kills tumor cells, but not normal cells, and that intralesional NDV causes complete tumor regression in athymic mice with a high therapeutic index.

  13. Pathological alterations typical of human Tay-Sachs disease, in the retina of a deep-sea fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fishelson, L.; Delarea, Yacov; Galil, Bella S.

    Micrographs of retinas from the deep-sea fish Cataetyx laticeps revealed visual cells containing membranous whorls in the ellipsoids of the inner segments resulting from stretching and modifications of the mitochondria membranes and their cristae. These pathological structures seem to be homologous to the whorls observed in retinas of human carriers of Tay-Sachs disease. This disease, a genetic disorder, is found in humans and some mammals. Our findings in fish suggest that the gene responsible can be found throughout the vertebrate evolutionary tree, possibly dormant in most taxa.

  14. Inhibition of human glutamine synthetase by L-methionine-S,R-sulfoximine-relevance to the treatment of neurological diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeitner, Thomas M; Cooper, Arthur J L

    2014-12-01

    At high concentrations, the glutamine synthetase inhibitor L-methionine-S,R-sulfoximine (MSO) is a convulsant, especially in dogs. Nevertheless, sub-convulsive doses of MSO are neuroprotective in rodent models of hyperammonemia, acute liver disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and suggest MSO may be clinically useful. Previous work has also shown that much lower doses of MSO are required to produce convulsions in dogs than in primates. Evidence from the mid-20th century suggests that humans are also less sensitive. In the present work, the inhibition of recombinant human glutamine synthetase by MSO is shown to be biphasic-an initial reversible competitive inhibition (K i 1.19 mM) is followed by rapid irreversible inactivation. This K i value for the human enzyme accounts, in part, for relative insensitivity of primates to MSO and suggests that this inhibitor could be used to safely inhibit glutamine synthetase activity in humans.

  15. Evolutionary analysis of foot-and-mouth disease virus serotype SAT 1 isolates from east africa suggests two independent introductions from southern africa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sangula, Abraham K.; Belsham, Graham; Muwanika, Vincent B.;

    2010-01-01

    Background: In East Africa, foot-and-mouth disease virus serotype SAT 1 is responsible for occasional severe outbreaks in livestock and is known to be maintained within the buffalo populations. Little is known about the evolutionary forces underlying its epidemiology in the region. To enhance our...... introductions from southern Africa were identified from a maximum clade credibility tree. One group was exclusive to Uganda while the other was present within Kenya and Tanzania. Conclusions: Our results provide a baseline characterization of the inter-regional spread of SAT 1 in sub-Saharan Africa...... appreciation of the epidemiological status of serotype SAT 1 virus in the region, we inferred its evolutionary and phylogeographic history by means of genealogy-based coalescent methods using 53 VP1 coding sequences covering a sampling period from 1948-2007. Results: The VP1 coding sequence of 11 serotype SAT...

  16. African origins and chronic kidney disease susceptibility in the human immunodeficiency virus era.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasembeli, Alex N; Duarte, Raquel; Ramsay, Michèle; Naicker, Saraladevi

    2015-05-01

    Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a major public health problem worldwide with the estimated incidence growing by approximately 6% annually. There are striking ethnic differences in the prevalence of CKD such that, in the United States, African Americans have the highest prevalence of CKD, four times the incidence of end stage renal disease when compared to Americans of European ancestry suggestive of genetic predisposition. Diabetes mellitus, hypertension and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection are the major causes of CKD. HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN) is an irreversible form of CKD with considerable morbidity and mortality and is present predominantly in people of African ancestry. The APOL1 G1 and G2 alleles were more strongly associated with the risk for CKD than the previously examined MYH9 E1 risk haplotype in individuals of African ancestry. A strong association was reported in HIVAN, suggesting that 50% of African Americans with two APOL1 risk alleles, if untreated, would develop HIVAN. However these two variants are not enough to cause disease. The prevailing belief is that modifying factors or second hits (including genetic hits) underlie the pathogenesis of kidney disease. This work reviews the history of genetic susceptibility of CKD and outlines current theories regarding the role for APOL1 in CKD in the HIV era.

  17. A shared promoter region suggests a common ancestor for the human VCX/Y, SPANX, and CSAG gene families and the murine CYPT family

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Martin A; Nielsen, John E; Retelska, Dorota

    2008-01-01

    Many testis-specific genes from the sex chromosomes are subject to rapid evolution, which can make it difficult to identify murine genes in the human genome. The murine CYPT gene family includes 15 members, but orthologs were undetectable in the human genome. However, using refined homology search...... with the murine SPANX gene and the CYPT family may share a common ancestor. Finally, we present evidence that VCX/Y and SPANX may be paralogs with a similar protein structure consisting of C terminal acidic repeats of variable lengths....

  18. A clinician's primer on the role of the microbiome in human health and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khanna, Sahil; Tosh, Pritish K

    2014-01-01

    The importance of the commensal microbiota that colonizes the skin, gut, and mucosal surfaces of the human body is being increasingly recognized through a rapidly expanding body of science studying the human microbiome. Although, at first glance, these discoveries may seem esoteric, the clinical implications of the microbiome in human health and disease are becoming clear. As such, it will soon be important for practicing clinicians to have an understanding of the basic concepts of the human microbiome and its relation to human health and disease. In this Concise Review, we provide a brief introduction to clinicians of the concepts underlying this burgeoning scientific field and briefly explore specific disease states for which the potential role of the human microbiome is becoming increasingly evident, including Clostridium difficile infection, inflammatory bowel disease, colonization with multidrug-resistant organisms, obesity, allergic diseases, autoimmune diseases, and neuropsychiatric illnesses, and we also discuss current and future roles of microbiome restorative therapies.

  19. Treatment of late stage disease in a model of arenaviral hemorrhagic fever: T-705 efficacy and reduced toxicity suggests an alternative to ribavirin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian B Gowen

    Full Text Available A growing number of arenaviruses are known to cause viral hemorrhagic fever (HF, a severe and life-threatening syndrome characterized by fever, malaise, and increased vascular permeability. Ribavirin, the only licensed antiviral indicated for the treatment of certain arenaviral HFs, has had mixed success and significant toxicity. Since severe arenaviral infections initially do not present with distinguishing symptoms and are difficult to clinically diagnose at early stages, it is of utmost importance to identify antiviral therapies effective at later stages of infection. We have previously reported that T-705, a substituted pyrazine derivative currently under development as an anti-influenza drug, is highly active in hamsters infected with Pichinde virus when the drug is administered orally early during the course of infection. Here we demonstrate that T-705 offers significant protection against this lethal arenaviral infection in hamsters when treatment is begun after the animals are ill and the day before the animals begin to succumb to disease. Importantly, this coincides with the time when peak viral loads are present in most organs and considerable tissue damage is evident. We also show that T-705 is as effective as, and less toxic than, ribavirin, as infected T-705-treated hamsters on average maintain their weight better and recover more rapidly than animals treated with ribavirin. Further, there was no added benefit to combination therapy with T-705 and ribavirin. Finally, pharmacokinetic data indicate that plasma T-705 levels following oral administration are markedly reduced during the latter stages of disease, and may contribute to the reduced efficacy seen when treatment is withheld until day 7 of infection. Our findings support further pre-clinical development of T-705 for the treatment of severe arenaviral infections.

  20. Model performance evaluation (validation and calibration) in model-based studies of therapeutic interventions for cardiovascular diseases : a review and suggested reporting framework.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haji Ali Afzali, Hossein; Gray, Jodi; Karnon, Jonathan

    2013-04-01

    Decision analytic models play an increasingly important role in the economic evaluation of health technologies. Given uncertainties around the assumptions used to develop such models, several guidelines have been published to identify and assess 'best practice' in the model development process, including general modelling approach (e.g., time horizon), model structure, input data and model performance evaluation. This paper focuses on model performance evaluation. In the absence of a sufficient level of detail around model performance evaluation, concerns regarding the accuracy of model outputs, and hence the credibility of such models, are frequently raised. Following presentation of its components, a review of the application and reporting of model performance evaluation is presented. Taking cardiovascular disease as an illustrative example, the review investigates the use of face validity, internal validity, external validity, and cross model validity. As a part of the performance evaluation process, model calibration is also discussed and its use in applied studies investigated. The review found that the application and reporting of model performance evaluation across 81 studies of treatment for cardiovascular disease was variable. Cross-model validation was reported in 55 % of the reviewed studies, though the level of detail provided varied considerably. We found that very few studies documented other types of validity, and only 6 % of the reviewed articles reported a calibration process. Considering the above findings, we propose a comprehensive model performance evaluation framework (checklist), informed by a review of best-practice guidelines. This framework provides a basis for more accurate and consistent documentation of model performance evaluation. This will improve the peer review process and the comparability of modelling studies. Recognising the fundamental role of decision analytic models in informing public funding decisions, the proposed

  1. A phase 2 study on the treatment of hyperkalemia in patients with chronic kidney disease suggests that the selective potassium trap, ZS-9, is safe and efficient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ash, Stephen R; Singh, Bhupinder; Lavin, Philip T; Stavros, Fiona; Rasmussen, Henrik S

    2015-08-01

    Hyperkalemia contributes to significant mortality and limits the use of cardioprotective and renoprotective renin-angiotensin-aldosterone blockers. Current therapies are poorly tolerated and not always effective. Here we conducted a phase 2 randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled dose-escalation study to assess safety and efficacy of ZS-9. This oral selective cation exchanger that preferentially entraps potassium in the gastrointestinal tract was given to patients with stable Stage 3 chronic kidney disease and hyperkalemia (5.0 to 6.0 mEq/l) during a 2-day period. Of 90 eligible patients with mean baseline serum potassium of 5.1 mEq/l, 30 were randomized to placebo, 12-0.3 g, 24-3 g, or 24 to 10 g of ZS-9 three times daily for 2 days with regular meals. None withdrew and ZS-9 dose-dependently reduced serum potassium. The primary efficacy end point (rate of serum potassium decline in the first 48 h) was met with significance in the 3- and 10-g cohorts. From baseline, mean serum potassium was significantly decreased by 0.92±0.52 mEq/l at 38 h. Urinary potassium excretion significantly decreased with 10-g ZS-9 as compared to placebo at day 2 (+15.8 +/- 21.8 vs. +8.9 +/- 22.9 mEq per 24h) from placebo at day 2. In this short-term study, no serious adverse events were reported; only mild constipation in the 3-g dose group was possibly related to treatment. Thus, ZS-9 was well-tolerated in patients with stable chronic kidney disease and hyperkalemia leading to a rapid, sustained reduction in serum potassium.

  2. Patterns of human papillomavirus DNA and antibody positivity in young males and females, suggesting a site-specific natural course of infection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vriend, Henrike J; Bogaards, Johannes A; van der Klis, Fiona R M; Scherpenisse, Mirte; Boot, Hein J; King, Audrey J; van der Sande, Marianne A B; Rossen, John

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND: To monitor the impact of human papillomavirus types 16 and 18 vaccine on HPV infection dynamics in the Netherlands, we started an ongoing study in sexually transmitted infection (STI) clinics in 2009. Here, we analyze baseline type-specific HPV DNA and HPV-specific antibody positivity ra

  3. Patterns of human papillomavirus DNA and antibody positivity in young males and females, suggesting a site-specific natural course of infection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vriend, Henrike J; Bogaards, Johannes A; van der Klis, Fiona R M; Scherpenisse, Mirte; Boot, Hein J; King, Audrey J; van der Sande, Marianne A B; Rossen, John

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND: To monitor the impact of human papillomavirus types 16 and 18 vaccine on HPV infection dynamics in the Netherlands, we started an ongoing study in sexually transmitted infection (STI) clinics in 2009. Here, we analyze baseline type-specific HPV DNA and HPV-specific antibody positivity ra

  4. Phylogenetic Analysis of Human Parvovirus B19 Sequences from Eleven Different Countries Confirms the Predominance of Genotype 1 and Suggests the Spread of Genotype 3b▿

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hübschen, Judith M.; Mihneva, Zefira; Mentis, Andreas F.; Schneider, François; Aboudy, Yair; Grossman, Zehava; Rudich, Hagit; Kasymbekova, Kalia; Sarv, Inna; Nedeljkovic, Jasminka; Tahita, Marc C.; Tarnagda, Zekiba; Ouedraogo, Jean-Bosco; Gerasimova, A. G.; Moskaleva, T. N.; Tikhonova, Nina T.; Chitadze, Nazibrola; Forbi, J. C.; Faneye, Adedayo O.; Otegbayo, Jesse A.; Charpentier, Emilie; Muller, Claude P.

    2009-01-01

    Phylogenetic analysis of 166 human parvovirus B19 sequences from 11 different countries attributed 91.57% to genotype 1, 5.42% to genotype 3b, and 3.01% to genotype 3a. Very similar viruses of genotype 1 circulated widely in Europe and Israel. Genotype 3b seems to show an increasing spread outside of Africa. PMID:19741071

  5. Studies on naturally occurring infectious bursal disease viruses suggest that a single amino acid substitution at position 253 in VP2 increases pathogenicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackwood, D J; Sreedevi, B; LeFever, L J; Sommer-Wagner, S E

    2008-07-20

    Three classic IBDV strains were previously isolated from commercial layer chicken flocks and shown to be phylogenetically related to vaccine strains but pathogenic in susceptible chickens. In this study, their viral genomes were sequenced and compared to sequences of vaccines being used in those flocks. The vaccine strains examined were sequenced directly from the manufacturer and had identical genome segment B sequences. Compared to these vaccines, the GA-1, H-30 and CS-2-35 isolates each had one silent mutation in the gene that encodes VP1. Compared to the two vaccines used at the time CS-2-35 was isolated, the segment A sequence of CS-2-35 contained numerous nucleotide and amino acid mutations suggesting the CS-2-35 virus was not closely related to these vaccines. This virus however did have amino acid mutations in VP2 that are reported to be necessary for replication in cell culture and lacked two of the three amino acid mutations previously shown to be necessary for virulence. These data suggest that CS-2-35 was a descendant from an attenuated strain of IBDV. When the segment A genomic sequences of the GA-1 and H-30 viruses were compared to the vaccines being used in those flocks they were most closely related to the attenuated D78 vaccine strain. In genome segment A, three nucleotide mutations in GA-1 and four in H-30 were observed compared to the D78 classic vaccine. These nucleotide mutations caused one amino acid (H253N) change in the GA-1 virus and two amino acids (H253Q and G259D) were different in the H-30 virus. In addition, both the GA-1 and H-30 viruses had the amino acid G76 in VP2 that appears to be unique to the vaccine D78. The data suggest that GA-1 and H-30 are genetically related and have a common ancestor even though they were isolated from geographically distant flocks. The evidence also suggests that GA-1, H-30 and CS-2-35 could be reversions from attenuated vaccine viruses or by coincidence genetically resemble classic IBDV vaccines. It

  6. MalaCards: A Comprehensive Automatically-Mined Database of Human Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rappaport, Noa; Twik, Michal; Nativ, Noam; Stelzer, Gil; Bahir, Iris; Stein, Tsippi Iny; Safran, Marilyn; Lancet, Doron

    2014-09-08

    Systems medicine provides insights into mechanisms of human diseases, and expedites the development of better diagnostics and drugs. To facilitate such strategies, we initiated MalaCards, a compendium of human diseases and their annotations, integrating and often remodeling information from 64 data sources. MalaCards employs, among others, the proven automatic data-mining strategies established in the construction of GeneCards, our widely used compendium of human genes. The development of MalaCards poses many algorithmic challenges, such as disease name unification, integrated classification, gene-disease association, and disease-targeted expression analysis. MalaCards displays a Web card for each of >19,000 human diseases, with 17 sections, including textual summaries, related diseases, related genes, genetic variations and tests, and relevant publications. Also included are a powerful search engine and a variety of categorized disease lists. This unit describes two basic protocols to search and browse MalaCards effectively.

  7. Genetic Engineering of Mesenchymal Stem Cells and Its Application in Human Disease Therapy

    OpenAIRE

    Hodgkinson, Conrad P; Gomez, José A.; Mirotsou, Maria; Dzau, Victor J.

    2010-01-01

    Hodgkinson and colleagues review the current status of knowledge with respect to the genetic modifications being explored as a means to improve mesenchymal stem cell therapy for human diseases, with a particular focus on cardiovascular diseases.

  8. Effects of environmental pollutants on cellular iron homeostasis and ultimate links to human disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chronic disease has increased in the last several decades, and environmental pollutants have been implicated. The magnitude and variety of diseases indicate the malfunctioning of some basic mechanism underlying human health. Environmental pollutants demonstrate a capability to co...

  9. Therapeutic role of rifaximin in inflammatory bowel disease: clinical implica