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Biomedicines ◽  
2022 ◽  
Vol 10 (1) ◽  
pp. 180
Pil-Soo Sung ◽  
Chang-Min Kim ◽  
Jung-Hoon Cha ◽  
Jin-Young Park ◽  
Yun-Suk Yu ◽  

Innate and adaptive immune responses are critically associated with the progression of fibrosis in chronic liver diseases. In this study, we aim to identify a unique immune-related gene signature representing advanced liver fibrosis and to reveal potential therapeutic targets. Seventy-seven snap-frozen liver tissues with various chronic liver diseases at different fibrosis stages (1: n = 12, 2: n = 12, 3: n = 25, 4: n = 28) were subjected to expression analyses. Gene expression analysis was performed using the nCounter PanCancer Immune Profiling Panel (NanoString Technologies, Seattle, WA, USA). Biological meta-analysis was performed using the CBS Probe PINGSTM (CbsBioscience, Daejeon, Korea). Using non-tumor tissues from surgically resected specimens, we identified the immune-related, five-gene signature (CHIT1_FCER1G_OSM_VEGFA_ZAP70) that reliably differentiated patients with low- (F1 and F2) and high-grade fibrosis (F3 and F4; accuracy = 94.8%, specificity = 91.7%, sensitivity = 96.23%). The signature was independent of all pathological and clinical features and was independently associated with high-grade fibrosis using multivariate analysis. Among these genes, the expression of inflammation-associated FCER1G, OSM, VEGFA, and ZAP70 was lower in high-grade fibrosis than in low-grade fibrosis, whereas CHIT1 expression, which is associated with fibrogenic activity of macrophages, was higher in high-grade fibrosis. Meta-analysis revealed that STAT3, a potential druggable target, highly interacts with the five-gene signature. Overall, we identified an immune gene signature that reliably predicts advanced fibrosis in chronic liver disease. This signature revealed potential immune therapeutic targets to ameliorate liver fibrosis.

2022 ◽  
Vol 11 ◽  
Zhengqing Wan ◽  
Haofeng Xiong ◽  
Xian Tan ◽  
Tong Su ◽  
Kun Xia ◽  

Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) is one of the most common types of cancer worldwide. Due to the lack of early detection and treatment, the survival rate of OSCC remains poor and the incidence of OSCC has not decreased during the past decades. To explore potential biomarkers and therapeutic targets for OSCC, we analyzed differentially expressed genes (DEGs) associated with OSCC using RNA sequencing technology. Methylation−regulated and differentially expressed genes (MeDEGs) of OSCC were further identified via an integrative approach by examining publicly available methylomic datasets together with our transcriptomic data. Protein−protein interaction (PPI) networks of MeDEGs were constructed and highly connected hub MeDEGs were identified from these PPI networks. Subsequently, expression and survival analyses of hub genes were performed using The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) database and the Gene Expression Profiling Interactive Analysis (GEPIA) online tool. A total of 56 upregulated MeDEGs and 170 downregulated MeDEGs were identified in OSCC. Eleven hub genes with high degree of connectivity were picked out from the PPI networks constructed by those MeDEGs. Among them, the expression level of four hub genes (CTLA4, CDSN, ACTN2, and MYH11) were found to be significantly changed in the head and neck squamous carcinoma (HNSC) patients. Three hypomethylated hub genes (CTLA4, GPR29, and TNFSF11) and one hypermethylated hub gene (ISL1) were found to be significantly associated with overall survival (OS) of HNSC patients. Therefore, these hub genes may serve as potential DNA methylation biomarkers and therapeutic targets of OSCC.

2022 ◽  
Vol 23 (2) ◽  
pp. 897
Weronika Ratajczak ◽  
Michał Lubkowski ◽  
Anna Lubkowska

Two out of three diseases of the prostate gland affect aging men worldwide. Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is a noncancerous enlargement affecting millions of men. Prostate cancer (PCa) in turn is the second leading cause of cancer death. The factors influencing the occurrence of BPH and PCa are different; however, in the course of these two diseases, the overexpression of heat shock proteins is observed. Heat shock proteins (HSPs), chaperone proteins, are known to be one of the main proteins playing a role in maintaining cell homeostasis. HSPs take part in the process of the proper folding of newly formed proteins, and participate in the renaturation of damaged proteins. In addition, they are involved in the transport of specific proteins to the appropriate cell organelles and directing damaged proteins to proteasomes or lysosomes. Their function is to protect the proteins against degradation factors that are produced during cellular stress. HSPs are also involved in modulating the immune response and the process of apoptosis. One well-known factor affecting HSPs is the androgen receptor (AR)—a main player involved in the development of BPH and the progression of prostate cancer. HSPs play a cytoprotective role and determine the survival of cancer cells. These chaperones are often upregulated in malignancies and play an indispensable role in tumor progression. Therefore, HSPs are considered as one of the therapeutic targets in anti-cancer therapies. In this review article, we discuss the role of different HSPs in prostate diseases, and their potential as therapeutic targets.

2022 ◽  
Vol 2022 ◽  
pp. 1-9
Riyu Chen ◽  
Zeyi Guan ◽  
Xianxing Zhong ◽  
Wenzheng Zhang ◽  
Ya Zhang

Objective. To explore the active compounds and targets of cinobufotalin (huachansu) compared with the osteosarcoma genes to obtain the potential therapeutic targets and pharmacological mechanisms of action of cinobufotalin on osteosarcoma through network pharmacology. Methods. The composition of cinobufotalin was searched by literature retrieval, and the target was selected from the CTD and TCMSP databases. The osteosarcoma genes, found from the GeneCards, OMIM, and other databases, were compared with the cinobufotalin targets to obtain potential therapeutic targets. The protein-protein interaction (PPI) network of potential therapeutic targets, constructed through the STRING database, was inputted into Cytoscape software to calculate the hub genes, using the NetworkAnalyzer. The hub genes were inputted into the Kaplan-Meier Plotter online database for exploring the survival curve. Functional enrichment analysis was identified using the DAVID database. Results. 28 main active compounds of cinobufotalin were explored, including bufalin, adenosine, oleic acid, and cinobufagin. 128 potential therapeutic targets on osteosarcoma are confirmed among 184 therapeutic targets form cinobufotalin. The hub genes included TP53, ACTB, AKT1, MYC, CASP3, JUN, TNF, VEGFA, HSP90AA1, and STAT3. Among the hub genes, TP53, ACTB, MYC, TNF, VEGFA, and STAT3 affect the patient survival prognosis of sarcoma. Through function enrichment analysis, it is found that the main mechanisms of cinobufotalin on osteosarcoma include promoting sarcoma apoptosis, regulating the cell cycle, and inhibiting proliferation and differentiation. Conclusion. The possible mechanisms of cinobufotalin against osteosarcoma are preliminarily predicted through network pharmacology, and further experiments are needed to prove these predictions.

Kaori Hayashi

AbstractRecent studies have demonstrated the association of altered epigenomes with lifestyle-related diseases. Epigenetic regulation promotes biological plasticity in response to environmental changes, and such plasticity may cause a ‘memory effect’, a sustained effect of transient treatment or an insult in the course of lifestyle-related diseases. We investigated the significance of epigenetic changes in several genes required for renal integrity, including the nephrin gene in podocytes, and the sustained anti-proteinuric effect, focusing on the transcription factor Krüppel-like factor 4 (KLF4). We further reported the role of the DNA repair factor lysine-acetyl transferase 5 (KAT5), which acts coordinately with KLF4, in podocyte injury caused by a hyperglycemic state through the acceleration of DNA damage and epigenetic alteration. In contrast, KAT5 in proximal tubular cells prevents acute kidney injury via glomerular filtration regulation by an epigenetic mechanism as well as promotion of DNA repair, indicating the cell type-specific action and roles of DNA repair factors. This review summarizes epigenetic alterations in kidney diseases, especially DNA methylation, and their utility as markers and potential therapeutic targets. Focusing on transcription factors or DNA damage repair factors associated with epigenetic changes may be meaningful due to their cell-specific expression or action. We believe that a better understanding of epigenetic alterations in the kidney will lead to the development of a novel strategy for chronic kidney disease (CKD) treatment.

2022 ◽  
Vol 12 ◽  
Francesca Racca ◽  
Gaia Pellegatta ◽  
Giuseppe Cataldo ◽  
Edoardo Vespa ◽  
Elisa Carlani ◽  

Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) is a chronic immune-mediated disease of the esophagus characterized clinically by symptoms related to esophageal dysfunction and histologically by eosinophil-predominant inflammation, whose incidence is rising. It significantly affects patients’ quality of life and, if left untreated, results in fibrotic complications. Although broad consensus has been achieved on first-line therapy, a subset of patients remains non-responder to standard therapy. The pathogenesis of EoE is multifactorial and results from the complex, still mostly undefined, interaction between genetics and intrinsic factors, environment, and antigenic stimuli. A deep understanding of the pathophysiology of this disease is pivotal for the development of new therapies. This review provides a comprehensive description of the pathophysiology of EoE, starting from major pathogenic mechanisms (genetics, type 2 inflammation, epithelial barrier dysfunction, gastroesophageal reflux, allergens, infections and microbiota) and subsequently focusing on the single protagonists of type 2 inflammation (involved cells, cytokines, soluble effectors, surface proteins and transcription factors) that could represent present and future therapeutic targets, while summarizing previous therapeutic approaches in literature.

Biomedicines ◽  
2022 ◽  
Vol 10 (1) ◽  
pp. 163
Devis Benfaremo ◽  
Silvia Svegliati ◽  
Chiara Paolini ◽  
Silvia Agarbati ◽  
Gianluca Moroncini

Systemic sclerosis (SSc) is a systemic, immune-mediated chronic disorder characterized by small vessel alterations and progressive fibrosis of the skin and internal organs. The combination of a predisposing genetic background and triggering factors that causes a persistent activation of immune system at microvascular and tissue level is thought to be the pathogenetic driver of SSc. Endothelial alterations with subsequent myofibroblast activation, excessive extracellular matrix (ECM) deposition, and unrestrained tissue fibrosis are the pathogenetic steps responsible for the clinical manifestations of this disease, which can be highly heterogeneous according to the different entity of each pathogenic step in individual subjects. Although substantial progress has been made in the management of SSc in recent years, disease-modifying therapies are still lacking. Several molecular pathways involved in SSc pathogenesis are currently under evaluation as possible therapeutic targets in clinical trials. These include drugs targeting fibrotic and metabolic pathways (e.g., TGF-β, autotaxin/LPA, melanocortin, and mTOR), as well as molecules and cells involved in the persistent activation of the immune system (e.g., IL4/IL13, IL23, JAK/STAT, B cells, and plasma cells). In this review, we provide an overview of the most promising therapeutic targets that could improve the future clinical management of SSc.

Daniel Geh ◽  
Jack Leslie ◽  
Rob Rumney ◽  
Helen L. Reeves ◽  
Thomas G. Bird ◽  

2022 ◽  
Vol 8 (1) ◽  
Xiang Ma ◽  
Gang Wang ◽  
Hao Fan ◽  
Zengliang Li ◽  
Wangwang Chen ◽  

AbstractGastric cancer (GC) is a global health problem and further studies of its molecular mechanisms are needed to identify effective therapeutic targets. Although some long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) have been found to be involved in the progression of GC, the molecular mechanisms of many GC-related lncRNAs remain unclear. In this study, a series of in vivo and in vitro assays were performed to study the relationship between FAM225A and GC, which showed that FAM225A levels were correlated with poor prognosis in GC. Higher FAM225A expression tended to be correlated with a more profound lymphatic metastasis rate, larger tumor size, and more advanced tumor stage. FAM225A also promoted gastric cell proliferation, invasion, and migration. Further mechanistic investigation showed that FAM225A acted as a miR-326 sponge to upregulate its direct target PADI2 in GC. Overall, our findings indicated that FAM225A promoted GC development and progression via a competitive endogenous RNA network of FAM225A/miR-326/PADI2 in GC, providing insight into possible therapeutic targets and prognosis of GC.

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