Displaying publications 1 - 20 of 44 in total

  1. Choong PF, Mok PL, Cheong SK, Leong CF, Then KY
    Cytotherapy, 2007;9(2):170-83.
    PMID: 17453969
    The multipotency of stromal cells has been studied extensively. It has been reported that mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) are capable of differentiating into cells of multilineage. Different methods and reagents have been used to induce the differentiation of MSC. We investigated the efficacy of different growth factors in inducing MSC differentiation into neurons.
  2. Choong PF, Mok PL, Cheong SK, Then KY
    Cytotherapy, 2007;9(3):252-8.
    PMID: 17464757
    The unique potential of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) has generated much research interest recently, particularly in exploring the regenerative nature of these cells. Previously, MSC were thought to be found only in the BM. However, further studies have shown that MSC can also be isolated from umbilical cord blood, adipose tissue and amniotic fluid. In this study, we explored the possibility of MSC residing in the cornea.
  3. Leow SN, Luu CD, Hairul Nizam MH, Mok PL, Ruhaslizan R, Wong HS, et al.
    PLoS One, 2015;10(6):e0128973.
    PMID: 26107378 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0128973
    To investigate the safety and efficacy of subretinal injection of human Wharton's Jelly-derived mesenchymal stem cells (hWJ-MSCs) on retinal structure and function in Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) rats.
  4. Mok PL, Leow SN, Koh AE, Mohd Nizam HH, Ding SL, Luu C, et al.
    Int J Mol Sci, 2017 Feb 08;18(2).
    PMID: 28208719 DOI: 10.3390/ijms18020345
    Mesenchymal stem cells are widely used in many pre-clinical and clinical settings. Despite advances in molecular technology; the migration and homing activities of these cells in in vivo systems are not well understood. Labelling mesenchymal stem cells with gold nanoparticles has no cytotoxic effect and may offer suitable indications for stem cell tracking. Here, we report a simple protocol to label mesenchymal stem cells using 80 nm gold nanoparticles. Once the cells and particles were incubated together for 24 h, the labelled products were injected into the rat subretinal layer. Micro-computed tomography was then conducted on the 15th and 30th day post-injection to track the movement of these cells, as visualized by an area of hyperdensity from the coronal section images of the rat head. In addition, we confirmed the cellular uptake of the gold nanoparticles by the mesenchymal stem cells using transmission electron microscopy. As opposed to other methods, the current protocol provides a simple, less labour-intensive and more efficient labelling mechanism for real-time cell tracking. Finally, we discuss the potential manipulations of gold nanoparticles in stem cells for cell replacement and cancer therapy in ocular disorders or diseases.
  5. Mok PL, Koh AE, Farhana A, Alsrhani A, Alam MK, Suresh Kumar S
    Saudi J Biol Sci, 2021 Apr;28(4):2502-2509.
    PMID: 33551661 DOI: 10.1016/j.sjbs.2021.01.051
    COVID-19 is a rapidly emerging infectious disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus currently spreading throughout the world. To date, there are no specific drugs formulated for it, and researchers around the globe are racing against the clock to investigate potential drug candidates. The repurposing of existing drugs in the market represents an effective and economical strategy commonly utilized in such investigations. In this study, we used a multiple-sequence alignment approach for preliminary screening of commercially-available drugs on SARS-CoV sequences from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) isolates. The viral genomic sequences from KSA isolates were obtained from GISAID, an open access repository housing a wide variety of epidemic and pandemic virus data. A phylogenetic analysis of the present 164 sequences from the KSA provinces was carried out using the MEGA X software, which displayed high similarity (around 98%). The sequence was then analyzed using the VIGOR4 genome annotator to construct its genomic structure. Screening of existing drugs was carried out by mining data based on viral gene expressions from the ZINC database. A total of 73 hits were generated. The viral target orthologs were mapped to the SARS-CoV-2 KSA isolate sequence by multiple sequence alignment using CLUSTAL OMEGA, and a list of 29 orthologs with purchasable drug information was generated. The results showed that the SARS CoV replicase polyprotein 1a had the highest sequence similarity at 79.91%. Through ZINC data mining, tanshinones were found to have high binding affinities to this target. These compounds could be ideal candidates for SARS-CoV-2. Other matches ranged between 27 and 52%. The results of this study would serve as a significant endeavor towards drug discovery that would increase our chances of finding an effective treatment or prevention against COVID19.
  6. Danjuma L, Mok PL, Higuchi A, Hamat RA, Teh SW, Koh AE, et al.
    Regen Ther, 2018 Dec;9:100-110.
    PMID: 30525080 DOI: 10.1016/j.reth.2018.09.001
    Introduction: Anti-tuberculosis agent rifampicin is extensively used for its effectiveness. Possible complications of tuberculosis and prolonged rifampicin treatment include kidney damage; these conditions can lead to reduced efficiency of the affected kidney and consequently to other diseases. Bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BMMSCs) can be used in conjunction with rifampicin to avert kidney damage; because of its regenerative and differentiating potentials into kidney cells. This research was designed to assess the modulatory and regenerative potentials of MSCs in averting kidney damage due to rifampicin-induced kidney toxicity in Wistar rats and their progenies. BMMSCs used in this research were characterized according to the guidelines of International Society for Cellular Therapy.

    Methods: The rats (male and female) were divided into three experimental groups, as follows: Group 1: control rats (4 males & 4 females); Group 2: rats treated with rifampicin only (4 males & 4 females); and Group 3: rats treated with rifampicin plus MSCs (4 males & 4 females). Therapeutic doses of rifampicin (9 mg/kg/day for 3-months) and MSCs infusions (twice/month for 3-months) were administered orally and intravenously respectively. At the end of the three months, the animals were bred together to determine if the effects would carry over to the next generation. Following breeding, the rats were sacrificed to harvest serum for biochemical analysis and the kidneys were also harvested for histological analysis and quantification of the glomeruli size, for the adult rats and their progenies.

    Results: The results showed some level of alterations in the biochemical indicators and histopathological damage in the rats that received rifampicin treatment alone, while the control and stem cells treated group showed apparently normal to nearly normal levels of both bio-indicators and normal histological architecture.

    Conclusions: Intravenous administration of MSCs yielded sensible development, as seen from biochemical indicators, histology and the quantitative cell analysis, hence implying the modulatory and regenerative properties of MSCs.

  7. Cui YC, Qiu YS, Wu Q, Bu G, Peli A, Teh SW, et al.
    Exp Biol Med (Maywood), 2021 May;246(10):1177-1183.
    PMID: 33535809 DOI: 10.1177/1535370220985468
    Osteoblasts play an important role in bone regeneration and repair. The hypoxia condition in bone occurs when bone undergoes fracture, and this will trigger a series of biochemical and mechanical changes to enable bone repair. Hence, it is interesting to observe the metabolites and metabolism changes when osteoblasts are exposed to hypoxic condition. This study has looked into the response of human osteoblast hFOB 1.19 under normoxic and hypoxic conditions by observing the cell growth and utilization of metabolites via Phenotype MicroArrays™ under these two different oxygen concentrations. The cell growth of hFOB 1.19 under hypoxic condition showed better growth compared to hFOB 1.19 under normal condition. In this study, osteoblast used glycolysis as the main pathway to produce energy as hFOB 1.19 in both hypoxic and normoxic conditions showed cell growth in well containing dextrin, glycogen, maltotriose, D-maltose, D-glucose-6-phospate, D-glucose, D-mannose, D-Turanose, D-fructose-6-phosphate, D-galactose, uridine, adenosine, inosine and α-keto-glutaric acid. In hypoxia, the cells have utilized additional metabolites such as α-D-glucose-1-phosphate and D-fructose, indicating possible activation of glycogen synthesis and glycogenolysis to metabolize α-D-glucose-1-phosphate. Meanwhile, during normoxia, D-L-α-glycerol phosphate was used, and this implies that the osteoblast may use glycerol-3-phosphate shuttle and oxidative phosphorylation to metabolize glycerol-3-phosphate.
  8. Teh SW, Koh AE, Tong JB, Wu X, Samrot AV, Rampal S, et al.
    Front Cell Dev Biol, 2021;9:634131.
    PMID: 34490233 DOI: 10.3389/fcell.2021.634131
    Bone fractures have a high degree of severity. This is usually a result of the physical trauma of diseases that affect bone tissues, such as osteoporosis. Due to its highly vascular nature, the bone is in a constant state of remodeling. Although those of younger ages possess bones with high regenerative potential, the impact of a disrupted vasculature can severely affect the recovery process and cause osteonecrosis. This is commonly seen in the neck of femur, scaphoid, and talus bone. In recent years, mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) therapy has been used to aid in the regeneration of afflicted bone. However, the cut-off in blood supply due to bone fractures can lead to hypoxia-induced changes in engrafted MSCs. Researchers have designed several oxygen-generating biomaterials and yielded varying degrees of success in enhancing tissue salvage and preserving cellular metabolism under ischemia. These can be utilized to further improve stem cell therapy for bone repair. In this review, we touch on the pathophysiology of these bone fractures and review the application of oxygen-generating biomaterials to further enhance MSC-mediated repair of fractures in the three aforementioned parts of the bone.
  9. Alsaeedi HA, Lam C, Koh AE, Teh SW, Mok PL, Higuchi A, et al.
    J. Photochem. Photobiol. B, Biol., 2020 Jan;203:111727.
    PMID: 31862637 DOI: 10.1016/j.jphotobiol.2019.111727
    Blindness and vision impairment are caused by irremediable retinal degeneration in affected individuals worldwide. Cell therapy for a retinal replacement can potentially rescue their vision, specifically for those who lost the light sensing photoreceptors in the eye. As such, well-characterized retinal cells are required for the replacement purposes. Stem cell-based therapy in photoreceptor and retinal pigment epithelium transplantation is well received, however, the drawbacks of retinal transplantation is the limited clinical protocols development, insufficient number of transplanted cells for recovery, the selection of potential stem cell sources that can be differentiated into the target cells, and the ability of cells to migrate to the host tissue. Dental pulp stem cells (DPSC) belong to a subset of mesenchymal stem cells, and are recently being studied due to its high capability of differentiating into cells of the neuronal lineage. In this review, we look into the potential uses of DPSC in treating retinal degeneration, and also the current data supporting its application.
  10. Farhana A, Koh AE, Kothandan S, Alsrhani A, Mok PL, Subbiah SK
    Int J Mol Sci, 2021 Nov 13;22(22).
    PMID: 34830168 DOI: 10.3390/ijms222212286
    Cancer cells are able to proliferate in an unregulated manner. There are several mechanisms involved that propel such neoplastic transformations. One of these processes involves bypassing cell death through changes in gene expression and, consequently, cell growth. This involves a complex epigenetic interaction within the cell, which drives it towards oncogenic transformations. These epigenetic events augment cellular growth by potentially altering chromatin structures and influencing key gene expressions. Therapeutic mechanisms have been developed to combat this by taking advantage of the underlying oncogenic mechanisms through chemical modulation. Camptothecin (CPT) is an example of this type of drug. It is a selective topoisomerase I inhibitor that is effective against many cancers, such as colorectal cancer. Previously, we successfully formulated a magnetic nanocarrier-conjugated CPT with β-cyclodextrin and iron NPs (Fe3O4) cross-linked using EDTA (CPT-CEF). Compared to CPT alone, it boasts higher efficacy due to its selective targeting and increased solubility. In this study, we treated HT29 colon cancer cells with CPT-CEF and attempted to investigate the cytotoxic effects of the formulation through an epigenetic perspective. By using RNA-Seq, several differentially expressed genes were obtained (p < 0.05). Enrichr was then used for the over-representation analysis, and the genes were compared to the epigenetic roadmap and histone modification database. The results showed that the DEGs had a high correlation with epigenetic modifications involving histone H3 acetylation. Furthermore, a subset of these genes was shown to be associated with the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway, which is highly upregulated in a large number of cancer cells. These genes could be investigated as downstream therapeutic targets against the uncontrolled proliferation of cancer cells. Further interaction analysis of the identified genes with the key genes of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway in colorectal cancer identified the direct interactors and a few transcription regulators. Further analysis in cBioPortal confirmed their genetic alterations and their distribution across patient samples. Thus, the findings of this study reveal that colorectal cancer could be reversed by treatment with the CPT-CEF nanoparticle-conjugated nanocarrier through an epigenetic mechanism.
  11. Teh SW, Mok PL, Abd Rashid M, Bastion MC, Ibrahim N, Higuchi A, et al.
    Int J Mol Sci, 2018 Feb 13;19(2).
    PMID: 29438279 DOI: 10.3390/ijms19020558
    Ocular microbial infection has emerged as a major public health crisis during the past two decades. A variety of causative agents can cause ocular microbial infections; which are characterized by persistent and destructive inflammation of the ocular tissue; progressive visual disturbance; and may result in loss of visual function in patients if early and effective treatments are not received. The conventional therapeutic approaches to treat vision impairment and blindness resulting from microbial infections involve antimicrobial therapy to eliminate the offending pathogens or in severe cases; by surgical methods and retinal prosthesis replacing of the infected area. In cases where there is concurrent inflammation, once infection is controlled, anti-inflammatory agents are indicated to reduce ocular damage from inflammation which ensues. Despite advances in medical research; progress in the control of ocular microbial infections remains slow. The varying level of ocular tissue recovery in individuals and the incomplete visual functional restoration indicate the chief limitations of current strategies. The development of a more extensive therapy is needed to help in healing to regain vision in patients. Stem cells are multipotent stromal cells that can give rise to a vast variety of cell types following proper differentiation protocol. Stem cell therapy shows promise in reducing inflammation and repairing tissue damage on the eye caused by microbial infections by its ability to modulate immune response and promote tissue regeneration. This article reviews a selected list of common infectious agents affecting the eye; which include fungi; viruses; parasites and bacteria with the aim of discussing the current antimicrobial treatments and the associated therapeutic challenges. We also provide recent updates of the advances in stem cells studies on sepsis therapy as a suggestion of optimum treatment regime for ocular microbial infections.
  12. Alam MK, Alfawzan AA, Haque S, Mok PL, Marya A, Venugopal A, et al.
    Front Pediatr, 2021;9:651951.
    PMID: 34026687 DOI: 10.3389/fped.2021.651951
    To investigate whether the craniofacial sagittal jaw relationship in patients with non-syndromic cleft differed from non-cleft (NC) individuals by artificial intelligence (A.I.)-driven lateral cephalometric (Late. Ceph.) analysis. The study group comprised 123 subjects with different types of clefts including 29 = BCLP (bilateral cleft lip and palate), 41 = UCLP (unilateral cleft lip and palate), 9 = UCLA (unilateral cleft lip and alveolus), 13 = UCL (unilateral cleft lip) and NC = 31. The mean age was 14.77 years. SNA, SNB, ANB angle and Wits appraisal was measured in lateral cephalogram using a new innovative A.I driven Webceph software. Two-way ANOVA and multiple-comparison statistics tests were applied to see the differences between gender and among different types of clefts vs. NC individuals. A significant decrease (p < 0.005) in SNA, ANB, Wits appraisal was observed in different types of clefts vs. NC individuals. SNB (p > 0.005) showed insignificant variables in relation to type of clefts. No significant difference was also found in terms of gender in relation to any type of clefts and NC group. The present study advocates a decrease in sagittal development (SNA, ANB and Wits appraisal) in different types of cleft compared to NC individuals.
  13. Mok PL, Cheong SK, Leong CF, Othman A
    Cytotherapy, 2008;10(2):116-24.
    PMID: 18368590 DOI: 10.1080/14653240701816996
    Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) are pluripotent progenitor cells that can be found in human bone marrow (BM). These cells have low immunogenicity and could suppress alloreactive T-cell responses. In the current study, MSC were tested for their capacity to carry and deliver the erythropoietin (EPO) gene in vitro.
  14. Al-Sanea MM, Ali Khan MS, Abdelazem AZ, Lee SH, Mok PL, Gamal M, et al.
    Molecules, 2018 Jan 31;23(2).
    PMID: 29385071 DOI: 10.3390/molecules23020297
    A new series of 1-phenyl-3-(4-(pyridin-3-yl)phenyl)urea derivatives were synthesized and subjected to in vitro antiproliferative screening against National Cancer Institute (NCI)-60 human cancer cell lines of nine different cancer types. Fourteen compounds 5a-n were synthesized with three different solvent exposure moieties (4-hydroxylmethylpiperidinyl and trimethoxyphenyloxy and 4-hydroxyethylpiperazine) attached to the core structure. Substituents with different π and σ values were added on the terminal phenyl group. Compounds 5a-e with a 4-hydroxymethylpiperidine moiety showed broad-spectrum antiproliferative activity with higher mean percentage inhibition values over the 60-cell line panel at 10 µM concentration. Compound 5a elicited lethal rather than inhibition effects on SK-MEL-5 melanoma cell line, 786-0, A498, RXF 393 renal cancer cell lines, and MDA-MB-468 breast cancer cell line. Two compounds, 5a and 5d showed promising mean growth inhibitions and thus were further tested at five-dose mode to determine median inhibitory concentration (IC50) values. The data revealed that urea compounds 5a and 5d are the most active derivatives, with significant efficacies and superior potencies than paclitaxel in 21 different cancer cell lines belonging particularly to renal cancer and melanoma cell lines. Moreover, 5a and 5d had superior potencies than gefitinib in 38 and 34 cancer cell lines, respectively, particularly colon cancer, breast cancer and melanoma cell lines.
  15. Shirley Ding SL, Leow SN, Munisvaradass R, Koh EH, Bastion ML, Then KY, et al.
    Eye (Lond), 2016 Oct;30(10):1293-1309.
    PMID: 27285322 DOI: 10.1038/eye.2016.94
    Erythropoietin (EPO) is a glycoprotein hormone conventionally thought to be responsible only in producing red blood cells in our body. However, with the discovery of the presence of EPO and EPO receptors in the retinal layers, the EPO seems to have physiological roles in the eye. In this review, we revisit the role of EPO in the eye. We look into the biological role of EPO in the development of the eye and the physiologic roles that it has. Apart from that, we seek to understand the mechanisms and pathways of EPO that contributes to the therapeutic and pathological conditions of the various ocular disorders such as diabetic retinopathy, retinopathy of prematurity, glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, optic neuritis, and retinal detachment. With these understandings, we discuss the clinical applications of EPO for treatment of ocular disorders, modes of administration, EPO formulations, current clinical trials, and its future directions.
  16. Ali Khan MS, Ahmed N, Misbah, Arifuddin M, Zakaria ZA, Al-Sanea MM, et al.
    Food Chem Toxicol, 2018 May;115:523-531.
    PMID: 29555329 DOI: 10.1016/j.fct.2018.03.021
    In view of the report on anti-nociceptive activity of Leathery Murdah, Terminalia coriacea {Roxb.} Wight & Arn. (Combretaceae) leaves, the present study was conducted to isolate the active constituents and identify the underlying mechanisms. The methanolic extract of T. coriacea leaves (TCLME) at doses 125, 250 and 500 mg/kg orally, was subjected to various in-vivo assays in acetic acid induced writhing and formalin induced paw-licking tests with aspirin (100 mg/kg) and morphine (5 mg/kg) as reference drugs. Three flavonoids, rutin, robinin and gossypetin 3-glucuronide 8-glucoside were isolated and characterized from TCLME for the first time. The extract showed significant (p 
  17. Samrot AV, Sean TC, Bhavya KS, Sahithya CS, Chan-Drasekaran S, Palanisamy R, et al.
    Pathogens, 2021 Feb 01;10(2).
    PMID: 33535649 DOI: 10.3390/pathogens10020145
    Leptospirosis is a perplexing conundrum for many. In the existing literature, the pathophysiological mechanisms pertaining to leptospirosis is still not understood in full. Considered as a neglected tropical zoonotic disease, leptospirosis is culminating as a serious problem worldwide, seemingly existing as co-infections with various other unrelated diseases, including dengue and malaria. Misdiagnosis is also common as non-specific symptoms are documented extensively in the literature. This can easily lead to death, as the severe form of leptospirosis (Weil's disease) manifests as a complex of systemic complications, especially renal failure. The virulence of Leptospira sp. is usually attributed to the outer membrane proteins, including LipL32. With an armament of virulence factors at their disposal, their ability to easily adhere, invade and replicate within cells calls for a swift refinement in research progress to establish their exact pathophysiological framework. As an effort to reconstitute the current knowledge on leptospirosis, the basis of leptospiral infection, including its risk factors, classification, morphology, transmission, pathogenesis, co-infections and clinical manifestations are highlighted in this review. The various diagnostic techniques are also outlined with emphasis on their respective pros and cons.
  18. Ding SSL, Subbiah SK, Khan MSA, Farhana A, Mok PL
    Int J Mol Sci, 2019 Apr 10;20(7).
    PMID: 30974904 DOI: 10.3390/ijms20071784
    Multipotent mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have been employed in numerous pre-clinical and clinical settings for various diseases. MSCs have been used in treating degenerative disorders pertaining to the eye, for example, age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, retinitis pigmentosa, diabetic retinopathy, and optic neuritis. Despite the known therapeutic role and mechanisms of MSCs, low cell precision towards the targeted area and cell survivability at tissue needing repair often resulted in a disparity in therapeutic outcomes. In this review, we will discuss the current and feasible strategy options to enhance treatment outcomes with MSC therapy. We will review the application of various types of biomaterials and advances in nanotechnology, which have been employed on MSCs to augment cellular function and differentiation for improving treatment of visual functions. In addition, several modes of gene delivery into MSCs and the types of associated therapeutic genes that are important for modulation of ocular tissue function and repair will be highlighted.
  19. Ding SLS, Koh AE, Kumar S, Ali Khan MS, Alzahrani B, Mok PL
    PMID: 31060031 DOI: 10.1016/j.jphotobiol.2019.04.008
    Dysfunctional or death of retinal photoreceptors is an irreversible phenomenon that is closely associated with a broad range of retinal degenerative diseases, such as retinitis pigmentosa and age-related macular degeneration (AMD), resulting in successive loss of visual function and blindness. In search for viable treatment for retinal degenerative diseases, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) has demonstrated promising therapeutic capabilities to repair and replace damaged photoreceptor cells in both in vitro and in vivo conditions. Nevertheless, the dearth of MSC differentiation capacity into photoreceptors has limited its use in cell replacement therapy. Erythropoietin (EPO) has vital role in early neural retinal cell differentiation and demonstrated rescue potential on dying photoreceptor cells. Hence, we aimed to evaluate the differentiation capacity of MSCs into photoreceptor cells in the presence of human EPO protein. We derived the MSC from human Wharton's jelly of umbilical cord and transduced the cells with lentivirus particles encoding EPO and green fluorescent protein (GFP) as reporter gene. The transduced cells were selectively cultured and induced to differentiate into photoreceptors by exposing to photoreceptor differentiation cocktail. Our preliminary results showed that transduced cells exposed to induction medium had an enhanced differentiation capacity when compared to non-transduced cells. Our results demonstrated a novel strategy to increase the yield of in vitro photoreceptor differentiation and may be potentially useful in improving the efficiency of stem cell transplantation for ocular disorders.
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