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Int. J. Mol. Sci., Volume 23, Issue 19 (October-1 2022) – 1073 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): To explore the combinatorial approach, multiple therapeutic agents are typically loaded in the delivery vehicles, controlling their release profiles and executing subsequent therapeutic purposes. Herein, we report the fabrication of core (silica)-shell (mesoporous silica nanoparticles, MSNs) architectures to deliver methylene blue and cupric doxorubicin as model drugs for synergistic photodynamic therapy, chemotherapy, and chemodynamic therapy. Together our results demonstrated that the MSNs-based core-shell nanoarchitectures have great potential as an effective strategy in synergistically ablating cancer through chemo-, chemodynamic, and photodynamic therapies. View this paper
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16 pages, 3333 KiB  
Article
HFR1, a bHLH Transcriptional Regulator from Arabidopsis thaliana, Improves Grain Yield, Shade and Osmotic Stress Tolerances in Common Wheat
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12057; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912057 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2009
Abstract
Common wheat, Triticum aestivum, is the most widely grown staple crop worldwide. To catch up with the increasing global population and cope with the changing climate, it is valuable to breed wheat cultivars that are tolerant to abiotic or shade stresses for [...] Read more.
Common wheat, Triticum aestivum, is the most widely grown staple crop worldwide. To catch up with the increasing global population and cope with the changing climate, it is valuable to breed wheat cultivars that are tolerant to abiotic or shade stresses for density farming. Arabidopsis LONG HYPOCOTYL IN FAR-RED 1 (AtHFR1), a photomorphogenesis-promoting factor, is involved in multiple light-related signaling pathways and inhibits seedling etiolation and shade avoidance. We report that overexpression of AtHFR1 in wheat inhibits etiolation phenotypes under various light and shade conditions, leading to shortened plant height and increased spike number relative to non-transgenic plants in the field. Ectopic expression of AtHFR1 in wheat increases the transcript levels of TaCAB and TaCHS as observed previously in Arabidopsis, indicating that the AtHFR1 transgene can activate the light signal transduction pathway in wheat. AtHFR1 transgenic seedlings significantly exhibit tolerance to osmotic stress during seed germination compared to non-transgenic wheat. The AtHFR1 transgene represses transcription of TaFT1, TaCO1, and TaCO2, delaying development of the shoot apex and heading in wheat. Furthermore, the AtHFR1 transgene in wheat inhibits transcript levels of PHYTOCHROME-INTERACTING FACTOR 3-LIKEs (TaPIL13, TaPIL15-1B, and TaPIL15-1D), downregulating the target gene STAYGREEN (TaSGR), and thus delaying dark-induced leaf senescence. In the field, grain yields of three AtHFR1 transgenic lines were 18.2–48.1% higher than those of non-transgenic wheat. In summary, genetic modification of light signaling pathways using a photomorphogenesis-promoting factor has positive effects on grain yield due to changes in plant architecture and resource allocation and enhances tolerances to osmotic stress and shade avoidance response. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Plant Sciences)
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15 pages, 2480 KiB  
Article
Decreased Prosaposin and Progranulin in the Cingulate Cortex Are Associated with Schizophrenia Pathophysiology
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12056; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912056 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2403
Abstract
Prosaposin (PSAP) and progranulin (PGRN) are two lysosomal proteins that interact and modulate the metabolism of lipids, particularly sphingolipids. Alterations in sphingolipid metabolism have been found in schizophrenia. Genetic associations of PSAP and PGRN with schizophrenia have been reported. To further clarify the [...] Read more.
Prosaposin (PSAP) and progranulin (PGRN) are two lysosomal proteins that interact and modulate the metabolism of lipids, particularly sphingolipids. Alterations in sphingolipid metabolism have been found in schizophrenia. Genetic associations of PSAP and PGRN with schizophrenia have been reported. To further clarify the role of PSAP and PGRN in schizophrenia, we examined PSAP and PGRN levels in postmortem cingulate cortex tissue from healthy controls along with patients who had suffered from schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or major depressive disorder. We found that PSAP and PGRN levels are reduced specifically in schizophrenia patients. To understand the role of PSAP in the cingulate cortex, we used an AAV strategy to knock down PSAP in neurons located in this region. Neuronal PSAP knockdown led to the downregulation of neuronal PGRN levels and behavioral abnormalities. Cingulate-PSAP-deficient mice exhibited increased anxiety-like behavior and impaired prepulse inhibition, as well as intact locomotion, working memory, and a depression-like state. The behavioral changes were accompanied by increased early growth response protein 1 (EGR-1) and activity-dependent cytoskeleton-associated protein (ARC) levels in the sensorimotor cortex and hippocampus, regions implicated in circuitry dysfunction in schizophrenia. In conclusion, PSAP and PGRN downregulation in the cingulate cortex is associated with schizophrenia pathophysiology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Mechanisms of Schizophrenia and Novel Targets 2.0)
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11 pages, 2600 KiB  
Article
Natural Variation of Fatty Acid Desaturase Gene Affects Linolenic Acid Content and Starch Pasting Viscosity in Rice Grains
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12055; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912055 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1582
Abstract
Rice, as one of the main food crops, provides a vital source of dietary energy for over half the world’s population. The OsFAD3 gene encodes fatty acid desaturase, catalyzing the conversion of linoleic acid (LA) to alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) in rice. However, the [...] Read more.
Rice, as one of the main food crops, provides a vital source of dietary energy for over half the world’s population. The OsFAD3 gene encodes fatty acid desaturase, catalyzing the conversion of linoleic acid (LA) to alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) in rice. However, the genetic characterization of OsFAD3 and its role in the conversion of LA to ALA remains elusive. Here, we validated the effects of two homologous genes, OsFAD3-1 and OsFAD3-2, on the ALA and LA/ALA ratio in rice grains using near-isogenic lines. Two major haplotypes of OsFAD3-1 are identified with different effects on the ALA and LA/ALA ratio in rice germplasm. High expression of OsFAD3-1 is associated with high ALA accumulation and eating quality of rice grains. Overexpression of OsFAD3-1 driven by a seed-specific promoter increases the ALA content up to 16-fold in the endosperm. A diagnostic marker is designed based on an 8-bp insertion/deletion in the OsFAD3-1 promoter, which can recognize OsFAD3-1 alleles in rice. These results indicate that OsFAD3-1 is a useful target gene in marker-assisted breeding programs to improve varieties with high ALA and appropriate LA/ALA ratio in brown rice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Genome Dynamics)
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18 pages, 960 KiB  
Review
Inflammatory and Prothrombotic Biomarkers, DNA Polymorphisms, MicroRNAs and Personalized Medicine for Patients with Peripheral Arterial Disease
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12054; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912054 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2143
Abstract
Classical risk factors play a major role in the initiation and development of atherosclerosis. However, the estimation of risk for cardiovascular events based only on risk factors is often insufficient. Efforts have been made to identify biomarkers that indicate ongoing atherosclerosis. Among important [...] Read more.
Classical risk factors play a major role in the initiation and development of atherosclerosis. However, the estimation of risk for cardiovascular events based only on risk factors is often insufficient. Efforts have been made to identify biomarkers that indicate ongoing atherosclerosis. Among important circulating biomarkers associated with peripheral arterial disease (PAD) are inflammatory markers which are determined by the expression of different genes and epigenetic processes. Among these proinflammatory molecules, interleukin-6, C-reactive protein, several adhesion molecules, CD40 ligand, osteoprotegerin and others are associated with the presence and progression of PAD. Additionally, several circulating prothrombotic markers have a predictive value in PAD. Genetic polymorphisms significantly, albeit moderately, affect risk factors for PAD via altered lipoprotein metabolism, diabetes, arterial hypertension, smoking, inflammation and thrombosis. However, most of the risk variants for PAD are located in noncoding regions of the genome and their influence on gene expression remains to be explored. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are single-stranded, noncoding RNAs that modulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. Patterns of miRNA expression, to some extent, vary in different atherosclerotic cardiovascular diseases. miRNAs appear to be useful in the detection of PAD and the prediction of progression and revascularization outcomes. In conclusion, taking into account one’s predisposition to PAD, i.e., DNA polymorphisms and miRNAs, together with circulating inflammatory and coagulation markers, holds promise for more accurate prediction models and personalized therapeutic options. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Pathology, Diagnostics, and Therapeutics)
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50 pages, 3741 KiB  
Review
Biotechnological Advances to Improve Abiotic Stress Tolerance in Crops
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12053; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912053 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 5024
Abstract
The major challenges that agriculture is facing in the twenty-first century are increasing droughts, water scarcity, flooding, poorer soils, and extreme temperatures due to climate change. However, most crops are not tolerant to extreme climatic environments. The aim in the near future, in [...] Read more.
The major challenges that agriculture is facing in the twenty-first century are increasing droughts, water scarcity, flooding, poorer soils, and extreme temperatures due to climate change. However, most crops are not tolerant to extreme climatic environments. The aim in the near future, in a world with hunger and an increasing population, is to breed and/or engineer crops to tolerate abiotic stress with a higher yield. Some crop varieties display a certain degree of tolerance, which has been exploited by plant breeders to develop varieties that thrive under stress conditions. Moreover, a long list of genes involved in abiotic stress tolerance have been identified and characterized by molecular techniques and overexpressed individually in plant transformation experiments. Nevertheless, stress tolerance phenotypes are polygenetic traits, which current genomic tools are dissecting to exploit their use by accelerating genetic introgression using molecular markers or site-directed mutagenesis such as CRISPR-Cas9. In this review, we describe plant mechanisms to sense and tolerate adverse climate conditions and examine and discuss classic and new molecular tools to select and improve abiotic stress tolerance in major crops. Full article
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13 pages, 1962 KiB  
Review
Label-Free Enrichment of Circulating Tumor Plasma Cells: Future Potential Applications of Dielectrophoresis in Multiple Myeloma
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12052; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912052 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1890
Abstract
In multiple myeloma (MM), circulating tumor plasma cells (CTPCs) are an emerging prognostic factor, offering a promising and minimally invasive means for longitudinal patient monitoring. Recent advances highlight the complex biology of plasma cell trafficking, highlighting the phenotypic and genetic signatures of intra- [...] Read more.
In multiple myeloma (MM), circulating tumor plasma cells (CTPCs) are an emerging prognostic factor, offering a promising and minimally invasive means for longitudinal patient monitoring. Recent advances highlight the complex biology of plasma cell trafficking, highlighting the phenotypic and genetic signatures of intra- and extra-medullary MM onset, making CTPC enumeration and characterization a new frontier of precision medicine for MM patients, requiring novel technological platforms for their standardized and harmonized detection. Dielectrophoresis (DEP) is an emerging label-free cell manipulation technique to separate cancer cells from healthy cells in peripheral blood samples, based on phenotype and membrane capacitance that could be successfully tested to enumerate and isolate CTPCs. Herein, we summarize preclinical data on DEP development for CTPC detection, as well as their clinical and research potential. Full article
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17 pages, 3612 KiB  
Article
Erythropoietin Receptor (EPOR) Signaling in the Osteoclast Lineage Contributes to EPO-Induced Bone Loss in Mice
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12051; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912051 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1869
Abstract
Erythropoietin (EPO) is a pleiotropic cytokine that classically drives erythropoiesis but can also induce bone loss by decreasing bone formation and increasing resorption. Deletion of the EPO receptor (EPOR) on osteoblasts or B cells partially mitigates the skeletal effects of EPO, thereby implicating [...] Read more.
Erythropoietin (EPO) is a pleiotropic cytokine that classically drives erythropoiesis but can also induce bone loss by decreasing bone formation and increasing resorption. Deletion of the EPO receptor (EPOR) on osteoblasts or B cells partially mitigates the skeletal effects of EPO, thereby implicating a contribution by EPOR on other cell lineages. This study was designed to define the role of monocyte EPOR in EPO-mediated bone loss, by using two mouse lines with conditional deletion of EPOR in the monocytic lineage. Low-dose EPO attenuated the reduction in bone volume (BV/TV) in Cx3cr1Cre EPORf/f female mice (27.05%) compared to controls (39.26%), but the difference was not statistically significant. To validate these findings, we increased the EPO dose in LysMCre model mice, a model more commonly used to target preosteoclasts. There was a significant reduction in both the increase in the proportion of bone marrow preosteoclasts (CD115+) observed following high-dose EPO administration and the resulting bone loss in LysMCre EPORf/f female mice (44.46% reduction in BV/TV) as compared to controls (77.28%), without interference with the erythropoietic activity. Our data suggest that EPOR in the monocytic lineage is at least partially responsible for driving the effect of EPO on bone mass. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Animal Experimental Models in Bone Metabolic Disease)
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18 pages, 4021 KiB  
Article
New Saccharin Salt of Chlordiazepoxide: Structural and Physicochemical Examination
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12050; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912050 - 10 Oct 2022
Viewed by 1473
Abstract
Since the formation of organic salts can improve the solubility, bioavailability, and stability of active pharmaceutical ingredients, the aim of this work was to prepare an organic salt of chlordiazepoxide with saccharin. To achieve this goal, the saccharin salt of chlordiazepoxide was obtained [...] Read more.
Since the formation of organic salts can improve the solubility, bioavailability, and stability of active pharmaceutical ingredients, the aim of this work was to prepare an organic salt of chlordiazepoxide with saccharin. To achieve this goal, the saccharin salt of chlordiazepoxide was obtained from a physical mixture of both components by grinding them with a small volume of solvent and by crystallizing them with complete evaporation of the solvent. The resulting salt was examined by methods such as Powder X-ray Diffraction (PXRD), Single Crystal X-ray Diffraction (SCXRD), Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC), Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA), Fourier Transform Infrared (FT-IR), and Raman spectroscopy. The results of the studies proved that saccharin salt of chlordiazepoxide crystallizes in the orthorhombic Pbca space group with one chlordiazepoxide cation and one saccharin anion in the asymmetric unit. In the crystal of the title compound, the chlordiazepoxide cation and the saccharin anion interact through strong N–H···O hydrogen bonds and weak C–H···O hydrogen bonds. The disappearance of the N–H band in the FT-IR spectrum of saccharin may indicate a shift of this proton towards chlordiazepoxide, while the disappearance of the aromatic bond band in the chlordiazepoxide ring in the Raman spectrum may suggest the formation of intermolecular hydrogen bonds between chlordiazepoxide molecules. The melting point of the salts differs from that of the starting compounds. Thermal decomposition of the salt begins above 200 °C and shows at least two overlapping stages of mass loss. In summary, the results of the research showed that the crystalline salt of the saccharin and chlordiazepoxide can be obtained by various methods: grinding with the addition of acetonitrile and crystallization from acetonitrile or a mixture of methanol with methylene chloride. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Physical Chemistry and Chemical Physics)
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13 pages, 2039 KiB  
Article
Occurrence of Capnophilic Lactic Fermentation in the Hyperthermophilic Anaerobic Bacterium Thermotoga sp. Strain RQ7
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12049; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912049 - 10 Oct 2022
Viewed by 1423
Abstract
Capnophilic lactic fermentation (CLF) is an anaplerotic pathway exclusively identified in the anaerobic hyperthermophilic bacterium Thermotoga neapolitana, a member of the order Thermotogales. The CO2-activated pathway enables non-competitive synthesis of hydrogen and L-lactic acid at high yields, making it an [...] Read more.
Capnophilic lactic fermentation (CLF) is an anaplerotic pathway exclusively identified in the anaerobic hyperthermophilic bacterium Thermotoga neapolitana, a member of the order Thermotogales. The CO2-activated pathway enables non-competitive synthesis of hydrogen and L-lactic acid at high yields, making it an economically attractive process for bioenergy production. In this work, we discovered and characterized CLF in Thermotoga sp. strain RQ7, a naturally competent strain, opening a new avenue for molecular investigation of the pathway. Evaluation of the fermentation products and expression analyses of key CLF-genes by RT-PCR revealed similar CLF-phenotypes between T. neapolitana and T. sp. strain RQ7, which were absent in the non-CLF-performing strain T. maritima. Key CLF enzymes, such as PFOR, HYD, LDH, RNF, and NFN, are up-regulated in the two CLF strains. Another important finding is the up-regulation of V-ATPase, which couples ATP hydrolysis to proton transport across the membranes, in the two CLF-performing strains. The fact that V-ATPase is absent in T. maritima suggested that this enzyme plays a key role in maintaining the necessary proton gradient to support high demand of reducing equivalents for simultaneous hydrogen and lactic acid synthesis in CLF. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Thermophilic and Hyperthermophilic Microbes and Enzymes 2.0)
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12 pages, 1411 KiB  
Article
Methionine γ-Lyase-Daidzein in Combination with S-Propyl-L-cysteine Sulfoxide as a Targeted Prodrug Enzyme System for Malignant Solid Tumor Xenografts
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12048; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912048 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2059
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to determine the anticancer effect of dipropyl thiosulfinate produced in situ by the pharmacological pair: (1) conjugated with daidzein C115H methionine γ-lyase (EC 4.4.1.11, C115H MGL-Dz) and (2) the substrate, S-propyl-L-cysteine sulfoxide (propiin) against various solid tumor [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to determine the anticancer effect of dipropyl thiosulfinate produced in situ by the pharmacological pair: (1) conjugated with daidzein C115H methionine γ-lyase (EC 4.4.1.11, C115H MGL-Dz) and (2) the substrate, S-propyl-L-cysteine sulfoxide (propiin) against various solid tumor types in vitro and in vivo. The MTT test was used to calculate IC50 values for HT29, COLO205 and HCT116 (colon cancer); Panc1 and MIA-PaCa2 (pancreatic cancer); and 22Rv1, DU-145 and PC3 (prostate cancer). The most promising effect for colon cancer cells in vitro was observed in HT29 (IC50 = 6.9 µM). The IC50 values for MIA-PaCa2 and Panc1 were 3.4 and 3.8 µM, respectively. Among prostate cancer cells, 22Rv1 was the most sensitive (IC50 = 5.4 µM). In vivo antitumor activity of the pharmacological pair was studied in HT29, SW620, Panc1, MIA-PaCa2 and 22Rv1 subcutaneous xenografts in BALB/c nude mice. The application of C115H MGL-Dz /propiin demonstrated a significant reduction in the tumor volume of Panc1 (TGI 67%; p = 0.004), MIA-PaCa2 (TGI 50%; p = 0.011), HT29 (TGI 51%; p = 0.04) and 22Rv1 (TGI 70%; p = 0.043) xenografts. The results suggest that the combination of C115H MGL-Dz/propiin is able to suppress tumor growth in vitro and in vivo and the use of this pharmacological pair can be considered as a new strategy for the treatment of solid tumors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Anticancer Agents: Design, Synthesis and Evaluation)
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14 pages, 3022 KiB  
Article
Lung Tumor Cells with Different Tn Antigen Expression Present Distinctive Immunomodulatory Properties
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12047; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912047 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1756
Abstract
Lung cancer is the first leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the world. Aberrant glycosylation in lung tumors leads to the expression of tumor-associated carbohydrate structures, such as the Tn antigen, consisting of N-acetyl-galactosamine (GalNAc) linked to a serine or threonine residue [...] Read more.
Lung cancer is the first leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the world. Aberrant glycosylation in lung tumors leads to the expression of tumor-associated carbohydrate structures, such as the Tn antigen, consisting of N-acetyl-galactosamine (GalNAc) linked to a serine or threonine residue in proteins (α-GalNAc-O-Ser/Thr). The Tn antigen can be recognized by the Macrophage Galactose/GalNAc lectin (MGL), which mediates various immune regulatory and tolerogenic functions, mainly by reprogramming the maturation of function of dendritic cells (DCs). In this work, we generated two different Tn-expressing variants from the Lewis-type lung murine cancer cell line LL/2, which showed different alterations in the O-glycosylation pathways that influenced the interaction with mouse MGL2 and the immunomodulatory properties of DCs. Thus, the identification of the biological programs triggered by Tn+ cancer cells might contribute to an improved understanding of the molecular mechanisms elicited by MGL-dependent immune regulatory circuits. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Insights on Roles of Glycoconjugates in Health and Diseases)
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15 pages, 2914 KiB  
Article
Lipid Droplet Formation Is Regulated by Ser/Thr Phosphatase PPM1D via Dephosphorylation of Perilipin 1
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12046; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912046 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2126
Abstract
Hypertrophy and hyperplasia of white adipocytes induce obesity, leading to diseases such as type 2 diabetes and hypertension, and even cancer. Hypertrophy of white adipocytes is attributed to the excessive storage of the energy form of triglycerides in lipid droplets (LDs). LDs are [...] Read more.
Hypertrophy and hyperplasia of white adipocytes induce obesity, leading to diseases such as type 2 diabetes and hypertension, and even cancer. Hypertrophy of white adipocytes is attributed to the excessive storage of the energy form of triglycerides in lipid droplets (LDs). LDs are fat storage organelles that maintain whole-body energy homeostasis. It is important to understand the mechanism of LD formation for the development of obesity therapy; however, the regulatory mechanisms of LD size and formation are not fully understood. In this study, we demonstrated that the PPM family phosphatase PPM1D regulates LD formation. PPM1D specific inhibitor, SL-176 significantly decreased LD formation via two different pathways: dependent of and independent of adipocyte-differentiation processes. In the mature white adipocytes after differentiation, LD formation was found to be controlled by PPM1D via dephosphorylation of Ser511 of perilipin 1. We found that inhibition of PPM1D in mature white adipocytes significantly reduced the size of the LDs via dephosphorylation of Ser511 of perilipin 1 but did not change the lipolysis sensitivity and the total amount of lipid in cells. Collectively, the results of this study provide evidence that PPM1D plays an important role in LD formation in mature adipocytes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Small Molecules, Influence of Molecular Pathways 2.0)
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16 pages, 3810 KiB  
Review
α-CAs from Photosynthetic Organisms
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12045; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912045 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1865
Abstract
Carbonic anhydrases (CAs) are ubiquitous enzymes that catalyze the reversible carbon dioxide hydration reaction. Among the eight different CA classes existing in nature, the α-class is the largest one being present in animals, bacteria, protozoa, fungi, and photosynthetic organisms. Although many studies have [...] Read more.
Carbonic anhydrases (CAs) are ubiquitous enzymes that catalyze the reversible carbon dioxide hydration reaction. Among the eight different CA classes existing in nature, the α-class is the largest one being present in animals, bacteria, protozoa, fungi, and photosynthetic organisms. Although many studies have been reported on these enzymes, few functional, biochemical, and structural data are currently available on α-CAs isolated from photosynthetic organisms. Here, we give an overview of the most recent literature on the topic. In higher plants, these enzymes are engaged in both supplying CO2 at the Rubisco and determining proton concentration in PSII membranes, while in algae and cyanobacteria they are involved in carbon-concentrating mechanism (CCM), photosynthetic reactions and in detecting or signaling changes in the CO2 level in the environment. Crystal structures are only available for three algal α-CAs, thus not allowing to associate specific structural features to cellular localizations or physiological roles. Therefore, further studies on α-CAs from photosynthetic organisms are strongly needed to provide insights into their structure–function relationship. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Carbonic Anhydrase and Carbonic Anhydrase Inhibitors)
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13 pages, 603 KiB  
Article
Usefulness of Urinary Biomarkers for Assessing Bladder Condition and Histopathology in Patients with Interstitial Cystitis/Bladder Pain Syndrome
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12044; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912044 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 2133
Abstract
This study investigated the usefulness of urinary biomarkers for assessing bladder condition and histopathology in patients with interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome (IC/BPS). We retrospectively enrolled 315 patients (267 women and 48 men) diagnosed with IC/BPS and 30 controls. Data on clinical and urodynamic [...] Read more.
This study investigated the usefulness of urinary biomarkers for assessing bladder condition and histopathology in patients with interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome (IC/BPS). We retrospectively enrolled 315 patients (267 women and 48 men) diagnosed with IC/BPS and 30 controls. Data on clinical and urodynamic characteristics (visual analog scale (VAS) score and bladder capacity) and cystoscopic hydrodistention findings (Hunner’s lesion, glomerulation grade, and maximal bladder capacity (MBC)) were recorded. Urine samples were utilized to assay inflammatory, neurogenic, and oxidative stress biomarkers, including interleukin (IL)-8, C-X-C motif chemokine ligand 10 (CXCL10), monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), eotaxin, IL-6, macrophage inflammatory protein 1 beta (MIP-1β), regulated on activation, normal T cell expressed and secreted (RANTES), tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), 8-hydroxy-2′-deoxyguanosine (8-OHdG), and 8-isoproatane, and total antioxidant capacity. Further, specific histopathological findings were identified via bladder biopsy. The associations between urinary biomarker levels and bladder conditions and histopathological findings were evaluated. The results reveal that patients with IC/BPS had significantly higher urinary MCP-1, eotaxin, TNF-α, PGE2, 8-OHdG, and 8-isoprostane levels than controls. Patients with Hunner’s IC (HIC) had significantly higher IL-8, CXCL10, BDNF, eotaxin, IL-6, MIP-1β, and RANTES levels than those with non-Hunner’s IC (NHIC). Patients with NHIC who had an MBC of ≤760 mL had significantly high urinary CXCL10, MCP-1, eotaxin, IL-6, MIP-1β, RANTES, PGE2, and 8-isoprostane levels and total antioxidant capacity. Patients with NHIC who had a higher glomerulation grade had significantly high urinary MCP-1, IL-6, RANTES, 8-OHdG, and 8-isoprostane levels. A significant association was observed between urinary biomarkers and glomerulation grade, MBC, VAS score, and bladder sensation. However, bladder-specific histopathological findings were not well correlated with urinary biomarker levels. The urinary biomarker levels can be useful for identifying HIC and different NHIC subtypes. Higher urinary inflammatory and oxidative stress biomarker levels are associated with IC/BPS. Most urinary biomarkers are not correlated with specific bladder histopathological findings; nevertheless, they are more important in the assessment of bladder condition than bladder histopathology. Full article
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17 pages, 1320 KiB  
Review
Heme Oxygenase-1 as Therapeutic Target for Diabetic Foot Ulcers
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12043; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912043 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2893
Abstract
A diabetic foot ulcer (DFU) is one of the major complications of diabetes. Wound healing under diabetic conditions is often impaired. This is in part due to the excessive oxidative stress, prolonged inflammation, immune cell dysfunction, delayed re-epithelialization, and decreased angiogenesis present at [...] Read more.
A diabetic foot ulcer (DFU) is one of the major complications of diabetes. Wound healing under diabetic conditions is often impaired. This is in part due to the excessive oxidative stress, prolonged inflammation, immune cell dysfunction, delayed re-epithelialization, and decreased angiogenesis present at the wound site. As a result of these multifactorial impaired healing pathways, it has been difficult to develop effective therapeutic strategies for DFU. Heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) is the rate-limiting enzyme in heme degradation generating carbon monoxide (CO), biliverdin (BV) which is converted into bilirubin (BR), and iron. HO-1 is a potent antioxidant. It can act as an anti-inflammatory, proliferative, angiogenic and cytoprotective enzyme. Due to its biological functions, HO-1 plays a very important role in wound healing, in part mediated through the biologically active end products generated by its enzymatic activity, particularly CO, BV, and BR. Therapeutic strategies involving the activation of HO-1, or the topical application of its biologically active end products are important in diabetic wound healing. Therefore, HO-1 is an attractive therapeutic target for DFU treatment. This review will provide an overview and discussion of the importance of HO-1 as a therapeutic target for diabetic wound healing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Pharmacology in Diabetes)
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18 pages, 1234 KiB  
Review
Biomarkers of Periodontitis and Its Differential DNA Methylation and Gene Expression in Immune Cells: A Systematic Review
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12042; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912042 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2639
Abstract
The characteristic epigenetic profile of periodontitis found in peripheral leukocytes denotes its impact on systemic immunity. In fact, this profile not only stands for periodontitis as a low-grade inflammatory disease with systemic effects but also as an important source of potentially valuable clinical [...] Read more.
The characteristic epigenetic profile of periodontitis found in peripheral leukocytes denotes its impact on systemic immunity. In fact, this profile not only stands for periodontitis as a low-grade inflammatory disease with systemic effects but also as an important source of potentially valuable clinical biomarkers of its systemic effects and susceptibility to other inflammatory conditions. Thus, we aimed to identify relevant genes tested as epigenetic systemic biomarkers in patients with periodontitis, based on the DNA methylation patterns and RNA expression profiles in peripheral immune cells. A detailed protocol was designed following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-analysis -PRISMA guideline. Only cross-sectional and case-control studies that reported potential systemic biomarkers of periodontitis in peripheral immune cell types were included. DNA methylation was analyzed in leukocytes, and gene expression was in polymorphonuclear and mononuclear cells. Hypermethylation was found in TLR regulators genes: MAP3K7, MYD88, IL6R, RIPK2, FADD, IRAK1BP1, and PPARA in early stages of periodontitis, while advanced stages presented hypomethylation of these genes. TGFB1I1, VNN1, HLADRB4, and CXCL8 genes were differentially expressed in lymphocytes and monocytes of subjects with poorly controlled diabetes mellitus, dyslipidemia, and periodontitis in comparison with controls. The DAB2 gene was differentially overexpressed in periodontitis and dyslipidemia. Peripheral blood neutrophils in periodontitis showed differential expression in 163 genes. Periodontitis showed an increase in ceruloplasmin gene expression in polymorphonuclears in comparison with controls. Several genes highlight the role of the epigenetics of peripheral inflammatory cells in periodontitis that could be explored in blood as a source of biomarkers for routine testing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Molecular Immunology in Chile)
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16 pages, 336 KiB  
Review
Molecular Biomarkers for the Early Detection of Ovarian Cancer
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12041; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912041 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 35 | Viewed by 5313
Abstract
Ovarian cancer is the deadliest gynecological cancer, leading to over 152,000 deaths each year. A late diagnosis is the primary factor causing a poor prognosis of ovarian cancer and often occurs due to a lack of specific symptoms and effective biomarkers for an [...] Read more.
Ovarian cancer is the deadliest gynecological cancer, leading to over 152,000 deaths each year. A late diagnosis is the primary factor causing a poor prognosis of ovarian cancer and often occurs due to a lack of specific symptoms and effective biomarkers for an early detection. Currently, cancer antigen 125 (CA125) is the most widely used biomarker for ovarian cancer detection, but this approach is limited by a low specificity. In recent years, multimarker panels have been developed by combining molecular biomarkers such as human epididymis secretory protein 4 (HE4), ultrasound results, or menopausal status to improve the diagnostic efficacy. The risk of ovarian malignancy algorithm (ROMA), the risk of malignancy index (RMI), and OVA1 assays have also been clinically used with improved sensitivity and specificity. Ongoing investigations into novel biomarkers such as autoantibodies, ctDNAs, miRNAs, and DNA methylation signatures continue to aim to provide earlier detection methods for ovarian cancer. This paper reviews recent advancements in molecular biomarkers for the early detection of ovarian cancer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomarkers for Early Detection of Cancer: Molecular Aspects)
14 pages, 8305 KiB  
Article
Sequence Characteristics and Expression Analysis of GhCIPK23 Gene in Upland Cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.)
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12040; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912040 - 10 Oct 2022
Viewed by 1203
Abstract
CIPK (calcineurin B-like-interacting protein kinase) is a kind of serine/threonine protein kinase widely existing in plants, and it plays an important role in plant growth and development and stress response. To better understand the biological functions of the GhCIPK23 gene in upland cotton, [...] Read more.
CIPK (calcineurin B-like-interacting protein kinase) is a kind of serine/threonine protein kinase widely existing in plants, and it plays an important role in plant growth and development and stress response. To better understand the biological functions of the GhCIPK23 gene in upland cotton, the coding sequence (CDS) of the GhCIPK23 gene was cloned in upland cotton, and its protein sequence, evolutionary relationship, subcellular localization, expression pattern and cis-acting elements in the promoter region were analyzed. Our results showed that the full-length CDS of GhCIPK23 was 1368 bp, encoding a protein with 455 amino acids. The molecular weight and isoelectric point of this protein were 50.83 KDa and 8.94, respectively. The GhCIPK23 protein contained a conserved N-terminal protein kinase domain and C-terminal regulatory domain of the CIPK gene family member. Phylogenetic tree analysis demonstrated that GhCIPK23 had a close relationship with AtCIPK23, followed by OsCIPK23, and belonged to Group A with AtCIPK23 and OsCIPK23. The subcellular localization experiment indicated that GhCIPK23 was located in the plasma membrane. Tissue expression analysis showed that GhCIPK23 had the highest expression in petals, followed by sepals, and the lowest in fibers. Stress expression analysis showed that the expression of the GhCIPK23 gene was in response to drought, salt, low-temperature and exogenous abscisic acid (ABA) treatment, and had different expression patterns under different stress conditions. Further cis-acting elements analysis showed that the GhCIPK23 promoter region had cis-acting elements in response to abiotic stress, phytohormones and light. These results established a foundation for understanding the function of GhCIPK23 and breeding varieties with high-stress tolerance in cotton. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Plant Sciences)
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15 pages, 1116 KiB  
Review
Nanomedicine for Treating Muscle Dystrophies: Opportunities, Challenges, and Future Perspectives
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12039; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912039 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2752
Abstract
Muscular dystrophies are a group of genetic muscular diseases characterized by impaired muscle regeneration, which leads to pathological inflammation that drives muscle wasting and eventually results in weakness, functional dependency, and premature death. The most known causes of death include respiratory muscle failure [...] Read more.
Muscular dystrophies are a group of genetic muscular diseases characterized by impaired muscle regeneration, which leads to pathological inflammation that drives muscle wasting and eventually results in weakness, functional dependency, and premature death. The most known causes of death include respiratory muscle failure due to diaphragm muscle decay. There is no definitive treatment for muscular dystrophies, and conventional therapies aim to ameliorate muscle wasting by promoting physiological muscle regeneration and growth. However, their effects on muscle function remain limited, illustrating the requirement for major advancements in novel approaches to treatments, such as nanomedicine. Nanomedicine is a rapidly evolving field that seeks to optimize drug delivery to target tissues by merging pharmaceutical and biomedical sciences. However, the therapeutic potential of nanomedicine in muscular dystrophies is poorly understood. This review highlights recent work in the application of nanomedicine in treating muscular dystrophies. First, we discuss the history and applications of nanomedicine from a broader perspective. Second, we address the use of nanoparticles for drug delivery, gene regulation, and editing to target Duchenne muscular dystrophy and myotonic dystrophy. Next, we highlight the potential hindrances and limitations of using nanomedicine in the context of cell culture and animal models. Finally, the future perspectives for using nanomedicine in clinics are summarized with relevance to muscular dystrophies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Nanomaterials and Polymers in Controlled Drug Delivery)
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Pathology, Diagnostics, and Therapeutics)
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19 pages, 9469 KiB  
Article
CircCSDE1 Regulates Proliferation and Differentiation of C2C12 Myoblasts by Sponging miR-21-3p
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12038; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912038 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1891
Abstract
The growth and development of skeletal muscle is regulated by many factors, and recent studies have shown that circular RNAs (circRNAs) can participate in this process. The model of porcine skeletal muscle injury was constructed to search for circRNAs that can regulate the [...] Read more.
The growth and development of skeletal muscle is regulated by many factors, and recent studies have shown that circular RNAs (circRNAs) can participate in this process. The model of porcine skeletal muscle injury was constructed to search for circRNAs that can regulate the growth and development of skeletal muscle in pigs. Using whole-transcriptome sequencing and bioinformatics analysis, a novel circRNA (circCSDE1) was screened out, which is highly expressed in skeletal muscle. Functional studies in C2C12 cells demonstrated that circCSDE1 could promote proliferation and inhibit myoblast differentiation, while opposing changes were observed by circCSDE1 knockdown. A dual-luciferase reporter assay revealed that circCSDE1 directly targeted miR-21-3p to regulate the expression of the downstream target gene (Cyclin-dependent kinase 16, CDK16). Moreover, miR-21-3p could inhibit proliferation and promote myoblast differentiation in C2C12 cells, opposite with the effects of circCSDE1. Additionally, the rescue experiments offered further evidence that circCSDE1 and its target, miR-21-3p, work together to regulate myoblast proliferation and differentiation. This study provides a theoretical basis for further understanding the regulatory mechanisms of circRNAs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Biology)
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19 pages, 4928 KiB  
Article
Microsporum gypseum Isolated from Ailuropoda melanoleuca Provokes Inflammation and Triggers Th17 Adaptive Immunity Response
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12037; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912037 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1844
Abstract
Microsporum gypseum causes dermatomycoses in giant pandas (Ailuropoda melanoleuca). This study aimed to investigate the immune response of M. gypseum following deep infection. The degree of damage to the heart, liver, spleen, lungs, and kidneys was evaluated using tissue fungal load, [...] Read more.
Microsporum gypseum causes dermatomycoses in giant pandas (Ailuropoda melanoleuca). This study aimed to investigate the immune response of M. gypseum following deep infection. The degree of damage to the heart, liver, spleen, lungs, and kidneys was evaluated using tissue fungal load, organ index, and histopathological methods. Quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) detected the mRNA expression of receptors and cytokines in the lung, and immunofluorescence staining and flow cytometry, were used to assess immune cells in the lung. The results indicated that conidia mainly colonized the lungs and caused serious injury with M. gypseum infection. Furthermore, dectin-1, TLR-2, and TLR-4 played a role in recognizing M. gypseum cells. Numerous inflammatory cells, mainly macrophages, dendritic cells, polymorphonuclear neutrophils, and inflammatory cytokines (TGF-β, TNF-α, IL-1β, IL-6, IL-10, IL-12, and IL-23), were activated in the early stages of infection. With the high expression of IL-22, IL-17A, and IL-17F, the Th17 pathway exerted an adaptive immune response to M. gypseum infection. These results can potentially aid in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases caused by M. gypseum in giant pandas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Immunology)
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15 pages, 2472 KiB  
Article
RAI14 Promotes Melanoma Progression by Regulating the FBXO32/c-MYC Pathway
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12036; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912036 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1600
Abstract
Melanoma originates from the malignant transformation of melanocytes. Compared with other skin cancers, melanoma has a higher fatality rate. The 5-year survival rate of patients with early-stage primary melanoma through surgical resection can reach more than 90%. However, the 5-year survival rate of [...] Read more.
Melanoma originates from the malignant transformation of melanocytes. Compared with other skin cancers, melanoma has a higher fatality rate. The 5-year survival rate of patients with early-stage primary melanoma through surgical resection can reach more than 90%. However, the 5-year survival rate of patients with metastatic melanoma is only 25%. Therefore, accurate assessment of melanoma progression is critical. Previous studies have found that Retinoic Acid Induced 14(RAI14) is critical in tumorigenesis. However, the biological function of RAI14 for the development of melanoma is unclear. In this study, RAI14 is highly expressed in melanoma and correlated with prognosis. The expression of RAI14 can affect the proliferation, migration and invasion of melanoma cells. F-Box Protein 32(FBXO32) is an E3 ubiquitin ligase of c-MYC. We found that RAI14 affects the transcriptional expression of FBXO32 and regulates the stability of c-MYC. These results suggest that RAI14 play an important role in the growth of melanoma and is expected to be a therapeutic target for melanoma. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Oncology)
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21 pages, 3512 KiB  
Article
Microbiome of Nodules and Roots of Soybean and Common Bean: Searching for Differences Associated with Contrasting Performances in Symbiotic Nitrogen Fixation
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12035; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912035 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2839
Abstract
Biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) is a key process for the N input in agriculture, with outstanding economic and environmental benefits from the replacement of chemical fertilizers. However, not all symbioses are equally effective in fixing N2, and a major example relies [...] Read more.
Biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) is a key process for the N input in agriculture, with outstanding economic and environmental benefits from the replacement of chemical fertilizers. However, not all symbioses are equally effective in fixing N2, and a major example relies on the high contribution associated with the soybean (Glycine max), contrasting with the low rates reported with the common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) crop worldwide. Understanding these differences represents a major challenge that can help to design strategies to increase the contribution of BNF, and next-generation sequencing (NGS) analyses of the nodule and root microbiomes may bring new insights to explain differential symbiotic performances. In this study, three treatments evaluated in non-sterile soil conditions were investigated in both legumes: (i) non-inoculated control; (ii) inoculated with host-compatible rhizobia; and (iii) co-inoculated with host-compatible rhizobia and Azospirillum brasilense. In the more efficient and specific symbiosis with soybean, Bradyrhizobium presented a high abundance in nodules, with further increases with inoculation. Contrarily, the abundance of the main Rhizobium symbiont was lower in common bean nodules and did not increase with inoculation, which may explain the often-reported lack of response of this legume to inoculation with elite strains. Co-inoculation with Azospirillum decreased the abundance of the host-compatible rhizobia in nodules, probably because of competitiveness among the species at the rhizosphere, but increased in root microbiomes. The results showed that several other bacteria compose the nodule microbiomes of both legumes, including nitrogen-fixing, growth-promoters, and biocontrol agents, whose contribution to plant growth deserves further investigation. Several genera of bacteria were detected in root microbiomes, and this microbial community might contribute to plant growth through a variety of microbial processes. However, massive inoculation with elite strains should be better investigated, as it may affect the root microbiome, verified by both relative abundance and diversity indices, that might impact the contribution of microbial processes to plant growth. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bacteria Present in Nitrogen-Fixing Nodules)
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29 pages, 6352 KiB  
Article
Identification of Glu-D1 Alleles and Novel Marker–Trait Associations for Flour Quality and Grain Yield Traits under Heat-Stress Environments in Wheat Lines Derived from Diverse Accessions of Aegilops tauschii
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12034; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912034 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1430
Abstract
Heat stress during grain filling is considered one of the major abiotic factors influencing wheat grain yield and quality in arid and semi-arid regions. We studied the effect of heat stress on flour quality and grain yield at moderate and continuous heat stress [...] Read more.
Heat stress during grain filling is considered one of the major abiotic factors influencing wheat grain yield and quality in arid and semi-arid regions. We studied the effect of heat stress on flour quality and grain yield at moderate and continuous heat stress under natural field conditions using 147 lines of wheat multiple synthetic derivatives (MSD) containing Aegilops tauschii introgressions. The study aimed to identify the marker–trait associations (MTAs) for the quality traits and grain yield under heat-stress conditions and identify stress-resilient germplasm-combining traits for good flour quality and grain yield. The MSD lines showed considerable genetic variation for quality traits and grain yield under heat-stress conditions; some lines performed better than the recurrent parent, Norin 61. We identified two MSD lines that consistently maintained relative performance (RP) values above 100% for grain yield and dough strength. We found the presence of three high-molecular-weight glutenin subunits (HMW-GSs) at the Glu-D1 locus derived from Ae. tauschii, which were associated with stable dough strength across the four environments used in this study. These HMW-GSs could be potentially useful in applications for future improvements of end-use quality traits targeting wheat under severe heat stress. A total of 19,155 high-quality SNP markers were used for the genome-wide association analysis and 251 MTAs were identified, most of them on the D genome, confirming the power of the MSD panel as a platform for mining and exploring the genes of Ae. tauschii. We identified the MTAs for dough strength under heat stress, which simultaneously control grain yield and relative performance for dough strength under heat-stress/optimum conditions. This study proved that Ae. tauschii is an inexhaustible resource for genetic mining, and the identified lines and pleiotropic MTAs reported in this study are considered a good resource for the development of resilient wheat cultivars that combine both good flour quality and grain yield under stress conditions using marker-assisted selection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Breeding and Genetics of Wheat Crops)
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17 pages, 15684 KiB  
Article
Interactions between C8orf37 and FAM161A, Two Ciliary Proteins Essential for Photoreceptor Survival
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12033; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912033 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1485
Abstract
Mutations in C8orf37 cause Bardet-Biedl syndrome (BBS), retinitis pigmentosa (RP), and cone–rod dystrophy (CRD), all manifest in photoreceptor degeneration. Little is known about which proteins C8orf37 interacts with to contribute to photoreceptor survival. To determine the proteins that potentially interact with C8orf37, we [...] Read more.
Mutations in C8orf37 cause Bardet-Biedl syndrome (BBS), retinitis pigmentosa (RP), and cone–rod dystrophy (CRD), all manifest in photoreceptor degeneration. Little is known about which proteins C8orf37 interacts with to contribute to photoreceptor survival. To determine the proteins that potentially interact with C8orf37, we carried out a yeast two-hybrid (Y2H) screen using C8orf37 as a bait. FAM161A, a microtubule-binding protein localized at the photoreceptor cilium required for photoreceptor survival, was identified as one of the preys. Double immunofluorescence staining and proximity ligation assay (PLA) of marmoset retinal sections showed that C8orf37 was enriched and was co-localized with FAM161A at the ciliary base of photoreceptors. Epitope-tagged C8orf37 and FAM161A, expressed in HEK293 cells, were also found to be co-localized by double immunofluorescence staining and PLA. Furthermore, interaction domain mapping assays identified that the N-terminal region of C8orf37 and amino acid residues 341-517 within the PFAM UPF0564 domain of FAM161A were critical for C8orf37–FAM161A interaction. These data suggest that the two photoreceptor survival proteins, C8orf37 and FAM161A, interact with each other which may contribute to photoreceptor health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neurodegeneration 2022: From Genetics to Molecules)
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16 pages, 690 KiB  
Review
Nutraceutical-Based Nanoformulations for Breast and Ovarian Cancer Treatment
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12032; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912032 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1869
Abstract
Different strategies have been investigated for a more satisfactory treatment of advanced breast cancer, including the adjuvant use of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). These nutritional compounds have been shown to possess potent anti-inflammatory and antiangiogenic activities, the capacity to affect transduction pathways/receptors [...] Read more.
Different strategies have been investigated for a more satisfactory treatment of advanced breast cancer, including the adjuvant use of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). These nutritional compounds have been shown to possess potent anti-inflammatory and antiangiogenic activities, the capacity to affect transduction pathways/receptors involved in cell growth and to reprogram tumor microenvironment. Omega-3 PUFA-containing nanoformulations designed for drug delivery in breast cancer were shown to potentiate the effects of enclosed drugs, enhance drug delivery to target sites, and minimize drug-induced side effects. We have critically analyzed here the results of the most recent studies investigating the effects of omega-3 PUFA-containing nanoformulations in breast cancer. The anti-neoplastic efficacy of omega-3 PUFAs has also been convincingly demonstrated by using preclinical in vivo models of ovarian cancer. The results obtained are critically analyzed here and seem to provide a sufficient rationale to move to still lacking interventional clinical trials, as well as to evaluate possible advantages of enclosing omega-3 PUFAs to drug-delivery nanosystems for ovarian cancer. Future perspectives in this area are also provided. Full article
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16 pages, 1981 KiB  
Article
Enhanced Bioactivity of Tailor-Made Glycolipid Enriched Manuka Honey
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12031; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912031 - 10 Oct 2022
Viewed by 1741
Abstract
Glycolipids can be synthetized in deep eutectic solvents (DESs) as they possess low water content allowing a reversed lipase activity and thus enables ester formation. Based on this principle, honey can also serve as a media for glycolipid synthesis. Indeed, this supersaturated sugar [...] Read more.
Glycolipids can be synthetized in deep eutectic solvents (DESs) as they possess low water content allowing a reversed lipase activity and thus enables ester formation. Based on this principle, honey can also serve as a media for glycolipid synthesis. Indeed, this supersaturated sugar solution is comparable in terms of physicochemical properties to the sugar-based DESs. Honey-based products being commercially available for therapeutic applications, it appears interesting to enhance its bioactivity. In the current work, we investigate if enriching medical grade honey with in situ enzymatically-synthetized glycolipids can improve the antimicrobial property of the mixture. The tested mixtures are composed of Manuka honey that is enriched with octanoate, decanoate, laurate, and myristate sugar esters, respectively dubbed GOH, GDH, GLH, and GMH. To characterize the bioactivity of those mixtures, first a qualitative screening using an agar well diffusion assay has been performed with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus subtilis, Candida bombicola, Escherichia coli, and Pseudomonas putida which confirmed considerably enhanced susceptibility of these micro-organisms to the different glycolipid enriched honey mixtures. Then, a designed biosensor E. coli strain that displays a stress reporter system consisting of three stress-specific inducible, red, green, and blue fluorescent proteins which respectively translate to physiological stress, genotoxicity, and cytotoxicity was used. Bioactivity was, therefore, characterized, and a six-fold enhancement of the physiological stress that was caused by GOH compared to regular Manuka honey at a 1.6% (v/v) concentration was observed. An antibacterial agar well diffusion assay with E. coli was performed as well and demonstrated an improved inhibitory potential with GOH upon 20% (v/v) concentration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Enzymatic Synthesis of Novel and Bioactive Compounds)
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22 pages, 5906 KiB  
Article
Transcriptome Profiling of the Hippocampal Seizure Network Implicates a Role for Wnt Signaling during Epileptogenesis in a Mouse Model of Temporal Lobe Epilepsy
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12030; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912030 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2112
Abstract
Mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (mTLE) is a life-threatening condition characterized by recurrent hippocampal seizures. mTLE can develop after exposure to risk factors such as febrile seizure, trauma, and infection. Within the latent period between exposure and onset of epilepsy, pathological remodeling events occur [...] Read more.
Mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (mTLE) is a life-threatening condition characterized by recurrent hippocampal seizures. mTLE can develop after exposure to risk factors such as febrile seizure, trauma, and infection. Within the latent period between exposure and onset of epilepsy, pathological remodeling events occur that contribute to epileptogenesis. The molecular mechanisms responsible are currently unclear. We used the mouse intrahippocampal kainite model of mTLE to investigate transcriptional dysregulation in the ipsilateral and contralateral dentate gyrus (DG), representing the epileptogenic zone (EZ) and peri-ictal zone (PIZ). DG were analyzed after 3, 7, and 14 days by RNA sequencing. In both the EZ and PIZ, transcriptional dysregulation was dynamic over the epileptogenic period with early expression of genes representing cell signaling, migration, and proliferation. Canonical Wnt signaling was upregulated in the EZ and PIZ at 3 days. Expression of inflammatory genes differed between the EZ and PIZ, with early expression after 3 days in the PIZ and delayed expression after 7–14 days in the EZ. This suggests that critical gene changes occur early in the hippocampal seizure network and that Wnt signaling may play a role within the latent epileptogenic period. These findings may help to identify novel therapeutic targets that could prevent epileptogenesis. Full article
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14 pages, 2118 KiB  
Article
NAC Transcription Factor GmNAC12 Improved Drought Stress Tolerance in Soybean
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12029; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912029 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2163
Abstract
NAC transcription factors (TFs) could regulate drought stresses in plants; however, the function of NAC TFs in soybeans remains unclear. To unravel NAC TF function, we established that GmNAC12, a NAC TF from soybean (Glycine max), was involved in the [...] Read more.
NAC transcription factors (TFs) could regulate drought stresses in plants; however, the function of NAC TFs in soybeans remains unclear. To unravel NAC TF function, we established that GmNAC12, a NAC TF from soybean (Glycine max), was involved in the manipulation of stress tolerance. The expression of GmNAC12 was significantly upregulated more than 10-fold under drought stress and more than threefold under abscisic acid (ABA) and ethylene (ETH) treatment. In order to determine the function of GmNAC12 under drought stress conditions, we generated GmNAC12 overexpression and knockout lines. The present findings showed that under drought stress, the survival rate of GmNAC12 overexpression lines increased by more than 57% compared with wild-type plants, while the survival rate of GmNAC12 knockout lines decreased by at least 46%. Furthermore, a subcellular localisation analysis showed that the GmNAC12 protein is concentrated in the nucleus of the tobacco cell. In addition, we used a yeast two-hybrid assay to identify 185 proteins that interact with GmNAC12. Gene ontology (GO) and KEGG analysis showed that GmNAC12 interaction proteins are related to chitin, chlorophyll, ubiquitin–protein transferase, and peroxidase activity. Hence, we have inferred that GmNAC12, as a key gene, could positively regulate soybean tolerance to drought stress. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Research for Legume Genomics, Genetics, and Breeding)
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13 pages, 2714 KiB  
Article
Integrative Analysis of the Nasal Microbiota and Serum Metabolites in Bovines with Respiratory Disease by 16S rRNA Sequencing and Gas Chromatography/Mass Selective Detector-Based Metabolomics
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(19), 12028; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms231912028 - 10 Oct 2022
Viewed by 1560
Abstract
Bovine respiratory disease (BRD) continues to pose a serious threat to the cattle industry, resulting in substantial economic losses. As a multifactorial disease, pathogen infection and respiratory microbial imbalance are important causative factors in the occurrence and development of BRD. Integrative analyses of [...] Read more.
Bovine respiratory disease (BRD) continues to pose a serious threat to the cattle industry, resulting in substantial economic losses. As a multifactorial disease, pathogen infection and respiratory microbial imbalance are important causative factors in the occurrence and development of BRD. Integrative analyses of 16S rRNA sequencing and metabolomics allow comprehensive identification of the changes in microbiota and metabolism associated with BRD, making it possible to determine which pathogens are responsible for the disease and to develop new therapeutic strategies. In our study, 16S rRNA sequencing and metagenomic analysis were used to describe and compare the composition and diversity of nasal microbes in healthy cattle and cattle with BRD from different farms in Yinchuan, Ningxia, China. We found a significant difference in nasal microbial diversity between diseased and healthy bovines; notably, the relative abundance of Mycoplasma bovis and Pasteurella increased. This indicated that the composition of the microbial community had changed in diseased bovines compared with healthy ones. The data also strongly suggested that the reduced relative abundance of probiotics, including Pasteurellales and Lactobacillales, in diseased samples contributes to the susceptibility to bovine respiratory disease. Furthermore, serum metabolomic analysis showed altered concentrations of metabolites in BRD and that a significant decrease in lactic acid and sarcosine may impair the ability of bovines to generate energy and an immune response to pathogenic bacteria. Based on the correlation analysis between microbial diversity and the metabolome, lactic acid (2TMS) was positively correlated with Gammaproteobacteria and Bacilli and negatively correlated with Mollicutes. In summary, microbial communities and serum metabolites in BRD were characterized by integrative analysis. This study provides a reference for monitoring biomarkers of BRD, which will be critical for the prevention and treatment of BRD in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Microbiology)
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