We compared the effects of metabolic, cardiac, and hemorheological responses to submaximal exercise under light hypoxia (LH) and moderate hypoxia (MH) versus normoxia (N). Ten healthy men (aged 21.3 ± 1.0 years) completed 30 min submaximal exercise corresponding to 60% maximal oxygen uptake at normoxia on a cycle ergometer under normoxia (760 mmHg), light hypoxia (596 mmHg, simulated 2000 m altitude), and moderate hypoxia (526 mmHg, simulated 3000 m altitude) after a 30 min exposure in the respective environments on different days, in a random order. Metabolic parameters (oxygen saturation (SPO2), minute ventilation, oxygen uptake, carbon dioxide excretion, respiratory exchange ratio, and blood lactate), cardiac function (heart rate (HR), stroke volume, cardiac output, and ejection fraction), and hemorheological properties (erythrocyte deformability and aggregation) were measured at rest and 5, 10, 15, and 30 min after exercise. SPO2 significantly reduced as hypoxia became more severe (MH > LH > N), and blood lactate was significantly higher in the MH than in the LH and N groups. HR significantly increased in the MH and LH groups compared to the N group. There was no significant difference in hemorheological properties, including erythrocyte deformability and aggregation. Thus, submaximal exercise under light/moderate hypoxia induced greater metabolic and cardiac responses but did not affect hemorheological properties.
Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third most common cancer in the world and represents the third most deadly tumor worldwide. About 15–25% of patients present metastasis in the moment of diagnosis, the liver being the most common site of metastization. Therefore, the development of new therapeutic agents is needed, to improve the patients’ prognosis. Amino acids transporters, LAT1 and ASCT2, are described as upregulated in CRC, being associated with a poor prognosis. Extracellular vesicles have emerged as key players in cell-to-cell communication due to their ability to transfer biomolecules between cells, with a phenotypic impact on the recipient cells. Thus, this study analyzes the presence of LAT1 and ASCT2 mRNAs in CRC-EVs and evaluates their role in phenotype modulation in a panel of four recipient cell lines (HCA-7, HEPG-2, SK-HEP-1, HKC-8). We found that HCT 116-EVs carry LAT1, ASCT2 and other oncogenic mRNAs being taken up by recipient cells. Moreover, the HCT 116-EVs’ internalization was associated with the increase of LAT1 mRNA in SK-HEP-1 cells. We also observed that HCT 116-EVs induce a higher cell migration capacity and proliferation of SK-HEP-1 and HKC-8 cells. The present study supports the LAT1-EVs’ mRNA involvement in cell phenotype modulation, conferring advantages in cell migration and proliferation.
Zika virus (ZIKV) is a pathogenic neurotropic virus that infects the central nervous system (CNS) and results in various neurological complications. Astrocytes are the dominant CNS cell producer of the antiviral cytokine IFN-β, however little is known about the factors involved in their ability to mediate viral infection control. Recent studies have displayed differential responses in astrocytes to ZIKV infection, and this study sought to elucidate astrocyte cell-specific responses to ZIKV using a variety of cell models infected with either the African (MR766) or Asian (PRVABC59) ZIKV strains. Expression levels of pro-inflammatory (TNF-α and IL-1β) and inflammatory (IL-8) cytokines following viral infection were low and mostly comparable within the ZIKV-resistant and ZIKV-susceptible astrocyte models, with better control of proinflammatory cytokines displayed in resistant astrocyte cells, synchronising with the viral infection level at specific timepoints. Astrocyte cell lines displaying ZIKV-resistance also demonstrated early upregulation of multiple antiviral genes compared with susceptible astrocytes. Interestingly, pre-stimulation of ZIKV-susceptible astrocytes with either poly(I:C) or poly(dA:dT) showed efficient protection against ZIKV compared with pre-stimulation with either recombinant IFN-β or IFN-λ, perhaps indicating that a more diverse antiviral gene expression is necessary for astrocyte control of ZIKV, and this is driven in part through interferon-independent mechanisms.
Human telomerase is a specialized DNA polymerase whose catalytic core includes both TERT and human telomerase RNA (hTR). Telomerase in humans, which is silent in most somatic cells, is activated to maintain the telomere length (TEL) in various types of cancer cells, including melanoma. In the vast majority of tumor cells, the TERT promoter is mutated to promote proliferation and inhibit apoptosis. Here, we exploited NG-ABEmax to revert TERT -146 T to -146 C in melanoma, and successfully obtained TERT promoter revertant mutant cells. These TERT revertant mutant cells exhibited significant growth inhibition both in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, A375−146C/C cells exhibited telomere shortening and the downregulation of TERT at both the transcription and protein levels, and migration and invasion were inhibited. In addition, TERT promoter revertant mutation abrogated the inhibitory effect of mutant TERT on apoptosis via B-cell lymphoma 2 (Blc-2), ultimately leading to cell death. Collectively, the results of our work demonstrate that reverting mutations in the TERT promoter is a potential therapeutic option for melanoma.
Tomato Fusarium wilt, caused by Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. lycopersici (Fol), is a destructive disease that threatens the agricultural production of tomatoes. In the present study, the biocontrol potential of strain KR2-7 against Fol was investigated through integrated genome mining and chemical analysis. Strain KR2-7 was identified as B. inaquosorum based on phylogenetic analysis. Through the genome mining of strain KR2-7, we identified nine antifungal and antibacterial compound biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs) including fengycin, surfactin and Bacillomycin F, bacillaene, macrolactin, sporulation killing factor (skf), subtilosin A, bacilysin, and bacillibactin. The corresponding compounds were confirmed through MALDI-TOF-MS chemical analysis. The gene/gene clusters involved in plant colonization, plant growth promotion, and induced systemic resistance were also identified in the KR2-7 genome, and their related secondary metabolites were detected. In light of these results, the biocontrol potential of strain KR2-7 against tomato Fusarium wilt was identified. This study highlights the potential to use strain KR2-7 as a plant-growth promotion agent.
Atoh8 belongs to a large superfamily of transcriptional regulators called basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) proteins. bHLH proteins have been identified in a wide range of organisms from yeast to humans. The members of this special group of transcription factors were found to be involved not only in embryonic development but also in disease initiation and its progression. Given their importance in several fundamental processes, the translation, subcellular location and turnover of bHLH proteins is tightly regulated. Alterations in the expression of bHLH proteins have been associated with multiple diseases also in context with Atoh8 which seems to unfold its functions as both transcriptional activator and repressor. Like many other bHLH transcription factors, so far, Atoh8 has also been observed to be involved in both embryonic development and carcinogenesis where it mainly acts as tumor suppressor. This review summarizes our current understanding of Atoh8 structure, function and regulation and its complex and partially controversial involvement in development and disease.
P. aeruginosa strain FG106 was isolated from the rhizosphere of tomato plants and identified through morphological analysis, 16S rRNA gene sequencing, and whole-genome sequencing. In vitro and in vivo experiments demonstrated that this strain could control several pathogens on tomato, potato, taro, and strawberry. Volatile and non-volatile metabolites produced by the strain are known to adversely affect the tested pathogens. FG106 showed clear antagonism against Alternaria alternata, Botrytis cinerea, Clavibacter michiganensis subsp. michiganensis, Phytophthora colocasiae, P. infestans, Rhizoctonia solani, and Xanthomonas euvesicatoria pv. perforans. FG106 produced proteases and lipases while also inducing high phosphate solubilization, producing siderophores, ammonia, indole acetic acid (IAA), and hydrogen cyanide (HCN) and forming biofilms that promote plant growth and facilitate biocontrol. Genome mining approaches showed that this strain harbors genes related to biocontrol and growth promotion. These results suggest that this bacterial strain provides good protection against pathogens of several agriculturally important plants via direct and indirect modes of action and could thus be a valuable bio-control agent.
As an important imaging modality, mammography is considered to be the global gold standard for early detection of breast cancer. Computer-Aided (CAD) systems have played a crucial role in facilitating quicker diagnostic procedures, which otherwise could take weeks if only radiologists were involved. In some of these CAD systems, breast pectoral segmentation is required for breast region partition from breast pectoral muscle for specific analysis tasks. Therefore, accurate and efficient breast pectoral muscle segmentation frameworks are in high demand. Here, we proposed a novel deep learning framework, which we code-named PeMNet, for breast pectoral muscle segmentation in mammography images. In the proposed PeMNet, we integrated a novel attention module called the Global Channel Attention Module (GCAM), which can effectively improve the segmentation performance of Deeplabv3+ using minimal parameter overheads. In GCAM, channel attention maps (CAMs) are first extracted by concatenating feature maps after paralleled global average pooling and global maximum pooling operation. CAMs are then refined and scaled up by multi-layer perceptron (MLP) for elementwise multiplication with CAMs in next feature level. By iteratively repeating this procedure, the global CAMs (GCAMs) are then formed and multiplied elementwise with final feature maps to lead to final segmentation. By doing so, CAMs in early stages of a deep convolution network can be effectively passed on to later stages of the network and therefore leads to better information usage. The experiments on a merged dataset derived from two datasets, INbreast and OPTIMAM, showed that PeMNet greatly outperformed state-of-the-art methods by achieving an IoU of 97.46%, global pixel accuracy of 99.48%, Dice similarity coefficient of 96.30%, and Jaccard of 93.33%, respectively.
Aggressive behavior has negative effects on animal welfare and growth performance in pigs. The dopamine receptor D2 (DRD2) has a critical neuromodulator role in the dopamine signal pathway within the brain to control behavior. A functional single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP), rs1110730503, in the promoter region of the porcine DRD2 gene was identified, which affects aggressive behavior in pigs. A chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assay was used to identify the interactions between interferon regulatory factor 1 (IRF1) and IRF2 with the DRD2 gene. The overexpression or knockdown of these two transcription factors in porcine kidney-15 (PK15) and porcine neuronal cells (PNCs) indicate that the binding of IRF1 to DRD2 promotes the transcription of the DRD2 gene, but the binding of IRF2 to the DRD2 gene inhibits its transcription. Furthermore, IRF1 and IRF2 are functionally antagonistic to each other. The downregulation of DRD2 or upregulation of IRF2 increased the apoptosis rate of porcine neuroglial cells. Taken together, we found that transcriptional factors IRF1 and IRF2 have vital roles in regulating the transcription of the DRD2 gene, and rs1110730503 (−915A/T) is a functional SNP that influences IRF2 binding to the promoter of the DRD2 gene. These findings will provide further insight towards controlling aggressive behavior in pigs.
Yearly, 1,500,000 cases of leishmaniasis are diagnosed, causing thousands of deaths. To advance in its therapy, we present an interdisciplinary protocol that unifies ethnobotanical knowledge of natural compounds and the latest bioinformatics advances to respond to an orphan disease such as leishmaniasis and specifically the one caused by Leishmania amazonensis. The use of ethnobotanical information serves as a basis for the development of new drugs, a field in which computer-aided drug design (CADD) has been a revolution. Taking this information from Amazonian communities, located in the area with a high prevalence of this disease, a protocol has been designed to verify new leads. Moreover, a method has been developed that allows the evaluation of lead molecules, and the improvement of their affinity and specificity against therapeutic targets. Through this approach, deguelin has been identified as a good lead to treat the infection due to its potential as an ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) inhibitor, a key enzyme in Leishmania development. Using an in silico-generated combinatorial library followed by docking approaches, we have found deguelin derivatives with better affinity and specificity against ODC than the original compound, suggesting that this approach could be adapted for developing new drugs against leishmaniasis.