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Annals of laboratory medicine, 39, 91--95

Dose Estimation Curves Following In Vitro X-ray Irradiation Using Blood From Four Healthy Korean Individuals.

Jang, Mi Ae, Han, Eun Ae, Lee, Jin Kyung, Cho, Kwang Hwan, Shin, Hee Bong, Lee, You Kyoung

Cytogenetic dosimetry is useful for evaluating the absorbed dose of ionizing radiation based on analysis of radiation-induced chromosomal aberrations. We created two types of dose-response calibration curves for dicentric chromosomes (DC) and translocations (TR) induced by X-ray irradiation, using an electron linear accelerator, which is the most frequently used medical device in radiotherapy. We irradiated samples from four healthy Korean individuals and compared the resultant curves between individuals. Aberration yields were studied in a total of 31,800 and 31,725 metaphases for DC and TR, respectively, obtained from 11 X-ray irradiation dose-points (0, 0.05, 0.1, 0.25, 0.5, 0.75, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 Gy). The dose-response relationship followed a linear-quadratic equation, Y=C+αD+βD², with the coefficients C=0.0011 for DC and 0.0015 for TR, α=0.0119 for DC and 0.0048 for TR, and β=0.0617 for DC and 0.0237 for TR. Correlation coefficients between irradiation doses and chromosomal aberrations were 0.971 for DC and 0.6 for TR, indicating a very strong and a moderate correlation, respectively. This is the first study implementing cytogenetic dosimetry following exposure to ionizing X-radiation.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.3343/alm.2019.39.1.91

Chemosphere, 215, 703--709

Nanomaterials induce DNA-protein crosslink and DNA oxidation: A mechanistic study with RTG-2 fish cell line and Comet assay modifications.

Klingelfus, T, Disner, G R, Voigt, C L, Alle, L F, Cestari, M M, Leme, D M

Genotoxic effects of nanomaterials (NMs) have been controversially reported in literature, and the mode of action (MoA) via DNA oxidation is cited as the main damage caused by them. Evidence of nano-silver as a crosslinker has been previously reported by the present research team in an in vivo fish genotoxicity study. Thus, aiming to confirm the evidence about NMs as crosslinker agent, the present investigation elucidated the genotoxic potential of NMs and their genotoxic MoA through in vitro assay with RTG-2 cells line (rainbow trout gonadal) by exposure to nano-silver (PVP-coated) and nano-titanium. The types and levels of DNA damage were assessed by the Comet assay (standard alkaline, hOGG1-modified alkaline, and two crosslink-modified alkaline versions). It was demonstrated that the use of the standard alkaline Comet assay alone may inaccurately predict the genotoxicity of NMs since oxidative and crosslink DNA damages were also verified in RTG-2 cells when assessed by the modified versions of the alkaline protocol. More importantly, it was confirmed that both nano-silver and nano-titanium acted as DNA-protein crosslinkers through the Comet assay version with proteinase K. As both nano-silver and nano-titanium present a great risk to aquatic life, these findings reinforce the need of genotoxicity testing strategies that encompass the assessment of different types of DNA damage, in order to ensure an accurate prediction of the genotoxic potential of NMs.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2018.10.118

Biochemical and biophysical research communications, 511, 658--664

Distinctive Krebs cycle remodeling in iPSC-derived neural and mesenchymal stem cells.

Benlamara, Sarah, Aubry, Laetitia, Fabregue, Julien, Bénit, Paule, Rustin, Pierre, Rak, Malgorzata

Mitochondria play a vital role in proliferation and differentiation and their remodeling in the course of differentiation is related to the variable energy and metabolic needs of the cell. In this work, we show a distinctive mitochondrial remodeling in human induced pluripotent stem cells differentiated into neural or mesenchymal progenitors. While leading to upregulation of the citrate synthase-α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase segment of the Krebs cycle and increased respiratory chain activities and respiration in the mesenchymal stem cells, the remodeling in the neural stem cells resulted in downregulation of α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase, upregulation of isocitrate dehydrogenase 2 and the accumulation of α-ketoglutarate. The distinct, lineage-specific changes indicate an involvement of these Krebs cycle enzymes in cell differentiation.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1016/j.bbrc.2019.02.033

Microbiological research, 221, 28--35

Muscodor brasiliensis sp. nov. produces volatile organic compounds with activity against Penicillium digitatum.

Pena, Lorena C, Jungklaus, Gustavo H, Savi, Daiani C, Ferreira-Maba, Lisandra, Servienski, André, Maia, Beatriz H L N S, Annies, Vinicius, Galli-Terasawa, Lygia V, Glienke, Chirlei, Kava, Vanessa

Endophytic fungi belonging to Muscodor genus are considered as promising alternatives to be used in biological control due to the production of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The strains LGMF1255 and LGMF1256 were isolated from the medicinal plant Schinus terebinthifolius and, by morphological data and phylogenetic analysis, identified as belonging to Muscodor genus. Phylogenetic analysis suggests that strain LGMF1256 is a new species, which is herein introduced as Muscodor brasiliensis sp. nov. The analysis of VOCs production revealed that compounds phenylethyl alcohol, α-curcumene, and E (β) farnesene until now has been reported only from M. brasiliensis, data that supports the classification of strain LGMF1256 as a new species. M. brasiliensis completely inhibited the phytopathogen P. digitatum in vitro. We also evaluated the ability of VOCs from LGMF1256 to inhibit the development of green mold symptoms by inoculation of P. digitatum in detached oranges. M. brasiliensis reduced the severity of diseases in 77%, and showed potential to be used for fruits storage and transportation to prevent the green mold symptoms development, eventually reducing the use of fungicides.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1016/j.micres.2019.01.002

BMC plant biology, 19, 183

Development and characterisation of interspecific hybrid lines with genome-wide introgressions from Triticum timopheevii in a hexaploid wheat background.

Devi, Urmila, Grewal, Surbhi, Yang, Cai-Yun, Hubbart-Edwards, Stella, Scholefield, Duncan, Ashling, Stephen, Burridge, Amanda, King, Ian P, King, Julie

Triticum timopheevii (2n = 4x = 28; A A GG), is an important source for new genetic variation for wheat improvement with genes for potential disease resistance and salt tolerance. By generating a range of interspecific hybrid lines, T. timopheevii can contribute to wheat's narrow gene-pool and be practically utilised in wheat breeding programmes. Previous studies that have generated such introgression lines between wheat and its wild relatives have been unable to use high-throughput methods to detect the presence of wild relative segments in such lines. A whole genome introgression approach, exploiting homoeologous recombination in the absence of the Ph1 locus, has resulted in the transfer of different chromosome segments from both the A and G genomes of T. timopheevii into wheat. These introgressions have been detected and characterised using single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers present on a high-throughput Axiom® Genotyping Array. The analysis of these interspecific hybrid lines has resulted in the detection of 276 putative unique introgressions from T. timopheevii, thereby allowing the generation of a genetic map of T. timopheevii containing 1582 SNP markers, spread across 14 linkage groups representing each of the seven chromosomes of the A and G genomes of T. timopheevii. The genotyping of the hybrid lines was validated through fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH). Comparative analysis of the genetic map of T. timopheevii and the physical map of the hexaploid wheat genome showed that synteny between the two species is highly conserved at the macro-level and confirmed the presence of inter- and intra-genomic translocations within the A and G genomes of T. timopheevii that have been previously only detected through cytological techniques. In this work, we report a set of SNP markers present on a high-throughput genotyping array, able to detect the presence of T. timopheevii in a hexaploid wheat background making it a potentially valuable tool for marker assisted selection (MAS) in wheat pre-breeding programs. These valuable resources of high-density molecular markers and wheat-T. timopheevii hybrid lines will greatly enhance the work being undertaken for wheat improvement through wild relative introgressions.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1186/s12870-019-1785-z

Cell death \& disease, 10, 186

Type 3 inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor has antiapoptotic and proliferative role in cancer cells.

Rezuchova, Ingeborg, Hudecova, Sona, Soltysova, Andrea, Matuskova, Miroslava, Durinikova, Erika, Chovancova, Barbora, Zuzcak, Michal, Cihova, Marina, Burikova, Monika, Penesova, Adela, Lencesova, Lubomira, Breza, Jan, Krizanova, Olga

Although the involvement of type 1 (IP R1) and type 2 (IP R2) inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptors in apoptosis induction has been well documented in different cancer cells and tissues, the function of type 3 IP R (IP R3) is still elusive. Therefore, in this work we focused on the role of IP R3 in tumor cells in vitro and in vivo. We determined increased expression of this receptor in clear cell renal cell carcinoma compared to matched unaffected part of the kidney from the same patient. Thus, we hypothesized about different functions of IP R3 compared to IP R1 and IP R2 in tumor cells. Silencing of IP R1 prevented apoptosis induction in colorectal cancer DLD1 cells, ovarian cancer A2780 cells, and clear cell renal cell carcinoma RCC4 cells, compared to apoptosis in cells treated with scrambled siRNA. As expected, silencing of IP R3 and subsequent apoptosis induction resulted in increased levels of apoptosis in all these cells. Further, we prepared a DLD1/IP R3_del cell line using CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing method. These cells were injected into nude mice and tumor's volume was compared with tumors induced by DLD1 cells. Lower volume of tumors originated from DLD1/IP R3_del cells was observed after 12 days, compared to wild type DLD1 cells. Also, the migration of these cells was lesser compared to wild type DLD1 cells. Apoptosis under hypoxic conditions was more pronounced in DLD1/IP R3_del cells than in DLD1 cells. These results clearly show that IP R3 has proliferative and anti-apoptotic effect in tumor cells, on contrary to the pro-apoptotic effect of IP R1.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1038/s41419-019-1433-4

Journal of applied genetics, 60, 63--70

Structural and copy number chromosome abnormalities in canine cutaneous mast cell tumours.

Vozdova, Miluse, Kubickova, Svatava, Cernohorska, Halina, Fröhlich, Jan, Fictum, Petr, Rubes, Jiri

Mast cell tumours (MCTs) are the most common skin tumours in dogs. Their clinical behaviour is variable and their aetiology remains largely unknown. We performed a metaphase fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH) with whole chromosome painting probes, and interphase FISH with BAC probes for 14 cancer-related genes to reveal clonal structural chromosome rearrangements and copy number variants (CNVs) in canine cutaneous MCTs. The metaphase FISH performed in three MCTs revealed several clonal monosomies and trisomies and two different chromosome rearrangements. No centric fusions were detected. The interphase FISH showed a variety of low frequency CNVs for the individual cancer-related genes. The heterogeneous character of the detected abnormalities indicates increased chromosome instability in canine MCTs. The clonal gain of chromosome 11 was detected in 81% (13/16) of the MCTs. Further research is needed to evaluate the significance of this abnormality as prognostic factor for the survival time or recurrence risk assessments in canine cutaneous MCTs.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1007/s13353-018-0471-4

The journal of obstetrics and gynaecology research

Utility and performance of bacterial artificial chromosomes-on-beads assays in chromosome analysis of clinical prenatal samples, products of conception and blood samples.

Rose, Rajiv, Venkatesh, Aishwarya, Pietilä, Sanna, Jabeen, Gazala, Jagadeesh, Sujatha M, Seshadri, Suresh

Chromosome analysis of prenatal samples and products of conception (POC) has conventionally been done by karyotyping (KT). Shortcomings of KT like high turnaround time and culture failure led to technology innovations, such as the bacterial artificial chromosomes (BAC)s-on-Beads (BoBs)-based tests, Prenatal BoBs (prenatal samples) and KaryoLite BoBs (POC samples). In the present study, we validated and evaluated the utility of each test on prenatal, POC and blood samples. Study A (n = 305; 259 prenatal + 46 blood/POC) and Study B (n = 176; 146 POC/chorionic vill + 30 blood/amniotic fluid) samples were analyzed using Prenatal and KaryoLite BoBs kits, respectively. KT, array-based Comparative Genomic Hybridization (arrayCGH) and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) were used for comparison of results. Ability of KaryoLite BoBs to identify ring chromosomes was tested. Prenatal BoBs had zero test failure rate and results of all samples were concordant with KT results. Totally four microdeletions were identified by Prenatal BoBs but not by KT. In Study B, all but two POC samples (one triploid and one tetraploid) were concordant with KT and arrayCGH. Partial chromosomal imbalance detection rate was ~64% and KaryoLite BoBs indicated the presence of a ring chromosome in all four cases. The failure rate of KaryoLite BoBs was 3%. We conclude that Prenatal BoBs (common aneuploidies and nine microdeletions) together with KT constitutes more comprehensive prenatal testing compared to FISH and KT. KaryoLite BoBs for aneuploidies of all chromosomes is highly successful in POC analysis and the ability to indicate presence of ring chromosomes improves its clinical sensitivity. Both tests are robust and could also be used for different specimens.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1111/jog.13920

Journal of cellular biochemistry, 120, 4804--4812

Optimization of prostate cancer cell detection using multiplex tyramide signal amplification.

Roy, Sounak, Axelrod, Haley D, Valkenburg, Kenneth C, Amend, Sarah, Pienta, Kenneth J

Approximately 29 000 men die of prostate cancer (PCa) each year in the United States, and 90% to 100% of them are due to incurable bone metastasis. It is difficult to determine (1) when PCa disseminates in the natural history of the disease; (2) where cancer cell disseminates before becoming overt metastatic lesions; and (3) which tumors are aggressive and which are indolent. Tumor tissue and liquid (blood and bone marrow) biopsies provide important information to answer these questions, but significant limitations exist for immunostaining strategies that assess protein expression in these tissues. Classic immunohistochemistry (IHC) assays can typically assess expression of one or two proteins per tissue section. We have developed a novel immunofluorescence staining protocol to detect a panel of seven proteins on PCa tissue from primary tumor biopsies and metastatic lesion autopsy tissue, as well as cancer cells from liquid biopsies. We used a tyramide-based system to amplify the true signal and optimized the protocol to reduce background signal, thereby boosting the signal-to-noise ratio. Any protein-specific antibody in this protocol can be exchanged for a different validated antibody. This protocol therefore, represents a highly informative and flexible assay that can be used to provide important information about cancer tissue for the purpose of improving detection, diagnosis, and treatment.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1002/jcb.28016

European journal of pharmaceutical sciences : official journal of the European Federation for Pharmaceutical Sciences, 129, 181--189

Multi- and unilamellar liposomal encapsulation of ciprofloxacin as ways to modify its phototoxicity and photodegradation.

Zgadzaj, A, Giebułtowicz, J, Gubernator, J, Podbielska, M, Sommer, S, Zaremba-Czogalla, M, Nałęcz-Jawecki, G

Liposomes are vesicular preparations that improve bioavailability of many pharmaceuticals, used even in ocular therapy. In addition, it is well documented that vesicular carriers could affect the photodegradation of molecules encapsulated inside, which is especially important for drugs that may exhibit phototoxicity when they are applied topically on sensitive light-exposed tissues. In this study, we investigated the effect of ciprofloxacin encapsulation into liposomes on its photodegradation, phototoxicity and photogenotoxicity in vitro at the concentration ranges applied in ophthalmology. We tested two variants of liposomes: large unilamellar vesicles (LUV) and multilamellar vesicles (MLV) in comparison to antibiotic solutions without phospholipids (CPX). On the basis of our research, the kinetics of ciprofloxacin photolysis was the fastest in formulations with vesicles with low drug-to-lipid ratio. Depending on vesicles type (drug-to-lipid ratio, MLV or LUV) and time of irradiation different degradants were produced. We proposed structures of the novel ciprofloxacin photolysis products characteristic for vesicles. We did not notice any photoprotective effect of application of ciprofloxacin encapsulation into liposomes, but it significantly affected the photodegradation product profile of the drug and the Photo-Irritation-Factor of the vesicular preparations. In the MTT and micronucleus assays impact of encapsulation was not as clearly visible.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1016/j.ejps.2019.01.006

The journal of pathology. Clinical research, 5, 63--78

Combined epithelial marker analysis of tumour budding in stage II colorectal cancer.

Slik, Khadija, Blom, Sami, Turkki, Riku, Välimäki, Katja, Kurki, Samu, Mustonen, Harri, Haglund, Caj, Carpén, Olli, Kallioniemi, Olli, Korkeila, Eija, Sundström, Jari, Pellinen, Teijo

Tumour budding predicts survival of stage II colorectal cancer (CRC) and has been suggested to be associated with epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT). However, the underlying molecular changes of tumour budding remain poorly understood. Here, we performed multiplex immunohistochemistry (mIHC) to phenotypically profile tumours using known EMT-associated markers: E-cadherin (adherence junctions), integrin β4 (ITGB4; basement membrane), ZO-1 (tight junctions), and pan-cytokeratin. A subpopulation of patients showed high ITGB4 expression in tumour buds, and this coincided with a switch of ITGB4 localisation from the basal membrane of intact epithelium to the cytoplasm of budding cells. Digital image analysis demonstrated that tumour budding with high ITGB4 expression in tissue microarray (TMA) cores correlated with tumour budding assessed from haematoxylin and eosin (H&E) whole sections and independently predicted poor disease-specific survival in two independent stage II CRC cohorts (hazard ratio [HR] = 4.50 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.50-13.5), n = 232; HR = 3.52 (95% CI = 1.30-9.53), n = 72). Furthermore, digitally obtained ITGB4-high bud count in random TMA cores was better associated with survival outcome than visual tumour bud count in corresponding H&E-stained samples. In summary, the mIHC-based phenotypic profiling of human tumour tissue shows strong potential for the molecular characterisation of tumour biology and for the discovery of novel prognostic biomarkers.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1002/cjp2.119

Cells, 8

Oxidative Stress Induces Telomere Dysfunction and Senescence by Replication Fork Arrest.

Coluzzi, Elisa, Leone, Stefano, Sgura, Antonella

Oxidative DNA damage, particularly 8-oxoguanine, represents the most frequent DNA damage in human cells, especially at the telomeric level. The presence of oxidative lesions in the DNA can hinder the replication fork and is able to activate the DNA damage response. In this study, we wanted to understand the mechanisms by which oxidative damage causes telomere dysfunction and senescence in human primary fibroblasts. After acute oxidative stress at telomeres, our data demonstrated a reduction in TRF1 and TRF2, which are involved in proper telomere replication and T-loop formation, respectively. Furthermore, we observed a higher level of γH2AX with respect to 53BP1 at telomeres, suggesting a telomeric replication fork stall rather than double-strand breaks. To confirm this finding, we studied the replication of telomeres by Chromosome Orientation-FISH (CO-FISH). The data obtained show an increase in unreplicated telomeres after hydrogen peroxide treatment, corroborating the idea that the presence of 8-oxoG can induce replication fork arrest at telomeres. Lastly, we analyzed the H3K9me3 histone mark after oxidative stress at telomeres, and our results showed an increase of this marker, most likely inducing the heterochromatinization of telomeres. These results suggest that 8-oxoG is fundamental in oxidative stress-induced telomeric damage, principally causing replication fork arrest.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.3390/cells8010019

Journal of cell science, 132

Synthetic lethality of cytolytic HSV-1 in cancer cells with ATRX and PML deficiency.

Han, Mingqi, Napier, Christine E, Frölich, Sonja, Teber, Erdahl, Wong, Ted, Noble, Jane R, Choi, Eugene H Y, Everett, Roger D, Cesare, Anthony J, Reddel, Roger R

Cancers that utilize the alternative lengthening of telomeres (ALT) mechanism for telomere maintenance are often difficult to treat and have a poor prognosis. They are also commonly deficient for expression of ATRX protein, a repressor of ALT activity, and a component of promyelocytic leukemia nuclear bodies (PML NBs) that are required for intrinsic immunity to various viruses. Here, we asked whether ATRX deficiency creates a vulnerability in ALT cancer cells that could be exploited for therapeutic purposes. We showed in a range of cell types that a mutant herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) lacking ICP0, a protein that degrades PML NB components including ATRX, was ten- to one thousand-fold more effective in infecting ATRX-deficient cells than wild-type ATRX-expressing cells. Infection of co-cultured primary and ATRX-deficient cancer cells revealed that mutant HSV-1 selectively killed ATRX-deficient cells. Sensitivity to mutant HSV-1 infection also correlated inversely with PML protein levels, and we showed that ATRX upregulates PML expression at both the transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels. These data provide a basis for predicting, based on ATRX or PML levels, which tumors will respond to a selective oncolytic herpesvirus.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1242/jcs.222349

Journal of clinical microbiology, 56

Automated Interpretation of Blood Culture Gram Stains by Use of a Deep Convolutional Neural Network.

Smith, Kenneth P, Kang, Anthony D, Kirby, James E

Microscopic interpretation of stained smears is one of the most operator-dependent and time-intensive activities in the clinical microbiology laboratory. Here, we investigated application of an automated image acquisition and convolutional neural network (CNN)-based approach for automated Gram stain classification. Using an automated microscopy platform, uncoverslipped slides were scanned with a 40× dry objective, generating images of sufficient resolution for interpretation. We collected 25,488 images from positive blood culture Gram stains prepared during routine clinical workup. These images were used to generate 100,213 crops containing Gram-positive cocci in clusters, Gram-positive cocci in chains/pairs, Gram-negative rods, or background (no cells). These categories were targeted for proof-of-concept development as they are associated with the majority of bloodstream infections. Our CNN model achieved a classification accuracy of 94.9% on a test set of image crops. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis indicated a robust ability to differentiate between categories with an area under the curve of >0.98 for each. After training and validation, we applied the classification algorithm to new images collected from 189 whole slides without human intervention. Sensitivity and specificity were 98.4% and 75.0% for Gram-positive cocci in chains and pairs, 93.2% and 97.2% for Gram-positive cocci in clusters, and 96.3% and 98.1% for Gram-negative rods. Taken together, our data support a proof of concept for a fully automated classification methodology for blood-culture Gram stains. Importantly, the algorithm was highly adept at identifying image crops with organisms and could be used to present prescreened, classified crops to technologists to accelerate smear review. This concept could potentially be extended to all Gram stain interpretive activities in the clinical laboratory.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1128/JCM.01521-17

Scientific reports, 8, 2286

DNA damage in leukocytes after internal ex-vivo irradiation of blood with the α-emitter Ra-223.

Schumann, Sarah, Eberlein, Uta, Muhtadi, Razan, Lassmann, Michael, Scherthan, Harry

Irradiation with high linear energy transfer α-emitters, like the clinically used Ra-223 dichloride, severely damages cells and induces complex DNA damage including closely spaced double-strand breaks (DSBs). As the hematopoietic system is an organ-at-risk for the treatment, knowledge about Ra-223-induced DNA damage in blood leukocytes is highly desirable. Therefore, 36 blood samples from six healthy volunteers were exposed ex-vivo (in solution) to different concentrations of Ra-223. Absorbed doses to the blood were calculated assuming local energy deposition of all α- and β-particles of the decay, ranging from 0 to 142 mGy. γ-H2AX + 53BP1 co-staining and analysis was performed in leukocytes isolated from the irradiated blood samples. For DNA damage quantification, leukocyte samples were screened for occurrence of α-induced DNA damage tracks and small γ-H2AX + 53BP1 DSB foci. This revealed a linear relationship between the frequency of α-induced γ-H2AX damage tracks and the absorbed dose to the blood, while the frequency of small γ-H2AX + 53BP1 DSB foci indicative of β-irradiation was similar to baseline values, being in agreement with a negligible β-contribution (3.7%) to the total absorbed dose to the blood. Our calibration curve will contribute to the biodosimetry of Ra-223-treated patients and early after incorporation of α-emitters.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1038/s41598-018-20364-7

Frontiers in neuroscience, 12, 55

Safety and Efficacy of Scanning Ultrasound Treatment of Aged APP23 Mice.

Leinenga, Gerhard, Götz, Jürgen

Deposition of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide leads to amyloid plaques that together with tau deposits characterize the brains of patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD). In modeling this pathology, transgenic animals such as the APP23 strain, that expresses a mutant form of the amyloid precursor protein found in familial cases of AD, have been instrumental. In previous studies, we have shown that repeated treatments with ultrasound in a scanning mode (termed scanning ultrasound or SUS) were effective in removing Aβ and restoring memory functions, without the need for a therapeutic agent such as an Aβ antibody. Considering that age is the most important risk factor for AD, we extended this study in which the mice were only 12 months old at the time of treatment by assessing a cohort of 2 year-old mice. Interestingly, at this age, APP23 mice are characterized by cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA) and the presence of occasional microbleeds. We found that SUS in aged mice that have been exposed to four SUS sessions that were spread out over 8 weeks and analyzed 4 weeks later did not show evidence of increased CAA or microbleeds. Furthermore, amyloid was reduced as assessed by methoxy-XO4 fluorescence. In addition, plaque-associated microglia were more numerous in SUS treated mice. Together this adds to the notion that SUS may be a treatment modality for human neurodegenerative diseases.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.3389/fnins.2018.00055

Postgraduate medical journal, 94, 398--403

Adenotonsillar microbiome: an update.

Johnston, James Jordan, Douglas, Richard

Pathogenic bacteria associated with the adenoids and tonsils cause much morbidity in the paediatric population. Hyperplasia of the adenoids is associated with otitis media with effusion and hyperplasia of the palatine tonsils is associated with both recurrent tonsillitis and obstructive sleep apnoea. Most current knowledge of the microbiology of the upper airways has been derived from culture-based studies, which usually reflect only a small fraction of the bacteria present on the mucosal surface. Culture-independent molecular surveys based on 16S ribosomal RNA sequencing are now being employed to determine the microbiota on the surface and within the tissue of adenoids and palatine tonsils. This review describes the new techniques applied in determining the microbiome and summarises the results of studies employing these techniques.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1136/postgradmedj-2018-135602

Sexual development : genetics, molecular biology, evolution, endocrinology, embryology, and pathology of sex determination and differentiation

Triploid Colubrid Snake Provides Insight into the Mechanism of Sex Determination in Advanced Snakes.

Rovatsos, Michail, Augstenová, Barbora, Altmanová, Marie, Sloboda, Michal, Kodym, Petr, Kratochvíl, Lukáš

The advanced snakes (Caenophidia), the important amniote lineage encompassing more than 3,000 living species, possess highly conserved female heterogamety across all families. However, we still lack any knowledge on the gene(s) and the molecular mechanism controlling sex determination. Triploid individuals spontaneously appear in populations of diploid species and can provide an important insight into the evolution of sex determination. Here, we report a case of spontaneous triploidy in a male of the twin-spotted ratsnake (Elaphe bimaculata) with ZZW sex chromosomes. We speculate that as both ZZ and ZZW individuals develop male gonads, the ratio between the number of Z chromosomes and autosomes, and not the presence of the W chromosome in the genome, drives sex determination in the advanced snakes.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1159/000490124

The FEBS journal, 285, 3769--3785

Naphthalene diimide-derivatives G-quadruplex ligands induce cell proliferation inhibition, mild telomeric dysfunction and cell cycle perturbation in U251MG glioma cells.

Muoio, Daniela, Berardinelli, Francesco, Leone, Stefano, Coluzzi, Elisa, di Masi, Alessandra, Doria, Filippo, Freccero, Mauro, Sgura, Antonella, Folini, Marco, Antoccia, Antonio

In the present paper, the biological effects of three different naphthalene diimides (NDIs) G-quadruplex (G4) ligands (H-NDI-Tyr, H-NDI-NMe2, and tetra-NDI-NMe2) were comparatively evaluated to those exerted by RHPS4, a well-characterized telomeric G4-ligand, in an in vitro model of glioblastoma. Data indicated that NDIs were very effective in blocking cell proliferation at nanomolar concentrations, although displaying a lower specificity for telomere targeting compared to RHPS4. In addition, differently from RHPS4, NDIs failed to enhance the effect of ionizing radiation, thus suggesting that additional targets other than telomeres could be involved in the strong NDI-mediated anti-proliferative effects. In order to test telomeric off-target action of NDIs, a panel of genes involved in tumor progression, DNA repair, telomere maintenance, and cell-cycle regulation were evaluated at transcriptional and translational level. Specifically, the compounds were able to cause a marked reduction of TERT and BCL2 amounts as well as to favor the accumulation of proteins involved in cell cycle control. A detailed cytofluorimetric analysis of cell cycle progression by means of bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) incorporation and staining of phospho-histone H3 indicated that NDIs greatly reduce the progression through S-phase and lead to G1 accumulation of BrdU-positive cells. Taken together, these data indicated that, besides effects on telomeres and oncogenes such as Tert and Bcl2, nanomolar concentrations of NDIs determined a sustained block of cell proliferation by slowing down cell cycle progression during S-phase. In conclusion, our data indicate that NDIs G4-ligands are powerful antiproliferative agents, which act through mechanisms that ultimately lead to altered cell-cycle control.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1111/febs.14628

Oncogenesis, 7, 62

Chromosomal instability-induced senescence potentiates cell non-autonomous tumourigenic effects.

He, Qianqian, Au, Bijin, Kulkarni, Madhura, Shen, Yang, Lim, Kah J, Maimaiti, Jiamila, Wong, Cheng Kit, Luijten, Monique N H, Chong, Han C, Lim, Elaine H, Rancati, Giulia, Sinha, Indrajit, Fu, Zhiyan, Wang, Xiaomeng, Connolly, John E, Crasta, Karen C

Chromosomal instability (CIN), a high rate of chromosome loss or gain, is often associated with poor prognosis and drug resistance in cancers. Aneuploid, including near-polyploid, cells contain an abnormal number of chromosomes and exhibit CIN. The post-mitotic cell fates following generation of different degrees of chromosome mis-segregation and aneuploidy are unclear. Here we used aneuploidy inducers, nocodazole and reversine, to create different levels of aneuploidy. A higher extent of aneuploid and near-polyploid cells in a given population led to senescence. This was in contrast to cells with relatively lower levels of abnormal ploidy that continued to proliferate. Our findings revealed that senescence was accompanied by DNA damage and robust p53 activation. These senescent cells acquired the senescence-associated secretory phenotype (SASP). Depletion of p53 reduced the number of senescent cells with concomitant increase in cells undergoing DNA replication. Characterisation of these SASP factors demonstrated that they conferred paracrine pro-tumourigenic effects such as invasion, migration and angiogenesis both in vitro and in vivo. Finally, a correlation between increased aneuploidy and senescence was observed at the invasive front in breast carcinomas. Our findings demonstrate functional non-equivalence of discernable aneuploidies on tumourigenesis and suggest a cell non-autonomous mechanism by which aneuploidy-induced senescent cells and SASP can affect the tumour microenvironment to promote tumour progression.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1038/s41389-018-0072-4