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  1. Kimura TE, Duggirala A, Hindmarch CC, Hewer RC, Cui MZ, Newby AC, et al.
    J. Mol. Cell. Cardiol., 2014 Jul;72:9-19.
    PMID: 24534707 DOI: 10.1016/j.yjmcc.2014.02.001
    AIMS: Cyclic AMP inhibits vascular smooth muscle cell (VSMC) proliferation which is important in the aetiology of numerous vascular diseases. The anti-mitogenic properties of cAMP in VSMC are dependent on activation of protein kinase A (PKA) and exchange protein activated by cAMP (EPAC), but the mechanisms are unclear.

    METHODS AND RESULTS: Selective agonists of PKA and EPAC synergistically inhibited Egr1 expression, which was essential for VSMC proliferation. Forskolin, adenosine, A2B receptor agonist BAY60-6583 and Cicaprost also inhibited Egr1 expression in VSMC but not in endothelial cells. Inhibition of Egr1 by cAMP was independent of cAMP response element binding protein (CREB) activity but dependent on inhibition of serum response element (SRE) activity. SRF binding to the Egr1 promoter was not modulated by cAMP stimulation. However, Egr1 expression was dependent on the SRF co-factors Elk1 and 4 but independent of MAL. Inhibition of SRE-dependent Egr1 expression was due to synergistic inhibition of Rac1 activity by PKA and EPAC, resulting in rapid cytoskeleton remodelling and nuclear export of ERK1/2. This was associated with de-phosphorylation of the SRF co-factor Elk1.

    CONCLUSION: cAMP inhibits VSMC proliferation by rapidly inhibiting Egr1 expression. This occurs, at least in part, via inhibition of Rac1 activity leading to rapid actin-cytoskeleton remodelling, nuclear export of ERK1/2, impaired Elk1-phosphorylation and inhibition of SRE activity. This identifies one of the earliest mechanisms underlying the anti-mitogenic effects of cAMP in VSMC but not in endothelial cells, making it an attractive target for selective inhibition of VSMC proliferation.

    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  2. Adam SH, Giribabu N, Kassim N, Kumar KE, Brahmayya M, Arya A, et al.
    Biomed Pharmacother, 2016 Jul;81:439-452.
    PMID: 27261624 DOI: 10.1016/j.biopha.2016.04.032
    INTRODUCTION: Protective effects of Vitis Vinifera seed aqueous extract (VVSAE) against pancreatic dysfunctions and elevation of oxidative stress, inflammation and apoptosis in the pancreas in diabetes were investigated. Histopathological changes in the pancreas were examined under light microscope.

    METHODS: Blood and pancreas were collected from adult male diabetic rats receiving 28days treatment with VVSAE orally. Fasting blood glucose (FBG), glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c), insulin and lipid profile levels and activity levels of anti-oxidative enzymes (superoxide dismutase-SOD, catalase-CAT and glutathione peroxidase-GPx) in the pancreas were determined by biochemical assays. Histopathological changes in the pancreas were examined under light microscopy and levels of insulin, glucose transporter (GLUT)-2, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, Ikkβ and caspase-3 mRNA and protein were analyzed by real-time PCR (qPCR) and immunohistochemistry respectively. Radical scavenging activity of VVSAE was evaluated by in-vitro anti-oxidant assay while gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) was used to identify the major compounds in the extract.

    RESULTS: GC-MS analyses indicated the presence of compounds that might exert anti-oxidative, anti-inflammatory and anti-apoptosis effects. Near normal FBG, HbAIc, lipid profile and serum insulin levels with lesser signs of pancreatic destruction were observed following administration of VVSAE to diabetic rats. Higher insulin, GLUT-2, SOD, CAT and GPx levels but lower TNF-α, Ikkβ and caspase-3 levels were also observed in the pancreas of VVSAE-treated diabetic rats (p<0.05 compared to non-treated diabetic rats). The extract possesses high in-vitro radical scavenging activities.

    CONCLUSION: In conclusions, administration of VVSAE to diabetic rats could help to protect the pancreas against oxidative stress, inflammation and apoptosis-induced damage while preserving pancreatic function near normal in diabetes.

    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  3. Greenwood MP, Greenwood M, Mecawi AS, Antunes-Rodrigues J, Paton JF, Murphy D
    Mol Brain, 2016 Jan 07;9:1.
    PMID: 26739966 DOI: 10.1186/s13041-015-0182-2
    BACKGROUND: Rasd1 is a member of the Ras family of monomeric G proteins that was first identified as a dexamethasone inducible gene in the pituitary corticotroph cell line AtT20. Using microarrays we previously identified increased Rasd1 mRNA expression in the rat supraoptic nucleus (SON) and paraventricular nucleus (PVN) of the hypothalamus in response to increased plasma osmolality provoked by fluid deprivation and salt loading. RASD1 has been shown to inhibit adenylyl cyclase activity in vitro resulting in the inhibition of the cAMP-PKA-CREB signaling pathway. Therefore, we tested the hypothesis that RASD1 may inhibit cAMP stimulated gene expression in the brain.

    RESULTS: We show that Rasd1 is expressed in vasopressin neurons of the PVN and SON, within which mRNA levels are induced by hyperosmotic cues. Dexamethasone treatment of AtT20 cells decreased forskolin stimulation of c-Fos, Nr4a1 and phosphorylated CREB expression, effects that were mimicked by overexpression of Rasd1, and inhibited by knockdown of Rasd1. These effects were dependent upon isoprenylation, as both farnesyltransferase inhibitor FTI-277 and CAAX box deletion prevented Rasd1 inhibition of cAMP-induced gene expression. Injection of lentiviral vector into rat SON expressing Rasd1 diminished, whereas CAAX mutant increased, cAMP inducible genes in response to osmotic stress.

    CONCLUSIONS: We have identified two mechanisms of Rasd1 induction in the hypothalamus, one by elevated glucocorticoids in response to stress, and one in response to increased plasma osmolality resulting from osmotic stress. We propose that the abundance of RASD1 in vasopressin expressing neurons, based on its inhibitory actions on CREB phosphorylation, is an important mechanism for controlling the transcriptional responses to stressors in both the PVN and SON. These effects likely occur through modulation of cAMP-PKA-CREB signaling pathway in the brain.

    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  4. Brunton PJ, Donadio MV, Yao ST, Greenwood M, Seckl JR, Murphy D, et al.
    J. Neurosci., 2015 Jan 14;35(2):666-77.
    PMID: 25589761 DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.5104-13.2015
    Maternal social stress during late pregnancy programs hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis hyper-responsiveness to stressors, such that adult prenatally stressed (PNS) offspring display exaggerated HPA axis responses to a physical stressor (systemic interleukin-1β; IL-1β) in adulthood, compared with controls. IL-1β acts via a noradrenergic relay from the nucleus tractus solitarii (NTS) to corticotropin releasing hormone neurons in the paraventricular nucleus (PVN). Neurosteroids can reduce HPA axis responses, so allopregnanolone and 3β-androstanediol (3β-diol; 5α-reduced metabolites of progesterone and testosterone, respectively) were given subacutely (over 24 h) to PNS rats to seek reversal of the "programmed" hyper-responsive HPA phenotype. Allopregnanolone attenuated ACTH responses to IL-1β (500 ng/kg, i.v.) in PNS females, but not in PNS males. However, 3β-diol normalized HPA axis responses to IL-1β in PNS males. Impaired testosterone and progesterone metabolism or increased secretion in PNS rats was indicated by greater plasma testosterone and progesterone concentrations in male and female PNS rats, respectively. Deficits in central neurosteroid production were indicated by reduced 5α-reductase mRNA levels in both male and female PNS offspring in the NTS, and in the PVN in males. In PNS females, adenovirus-mediated gene transfer was used to upregulate expression of 5α-reductase and 3α-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase mRNAs in the NTS, and this normalized hyperactive HPA axis responses to IL-1β. Thus, downregulation of neurosteroid production in the brain may underlie HPA axis hyper-responsiveness in prenatally programmed offspring, and administration of 5α-reduced steroids acutely to PNS rats overrides programming of hyperactive HPA axis responses to immune challenge in a sex-dependent manner.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  5. Hussain Z, Katas H, Mohd Amin MC, Kumolosasi E
    PLoS One, 2014;9(11):e113143.
    PMID: 25396426 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0113143
    The present study was conducted with the aim to investigate the immuno-modulatory and histological stabilization effects of nanocarrier-based transcutaneous co-delivery of hydrocortisone (HC) and hydroxytyrosol (HT). In this investigation, the clinical and pharmacological efficacies of nanoparticle (NP)-based formulation to alleviate 2,4-dinitrofluorobenzene (DNFB)-induced atopic dermatitis (AD) was explored by using an NC/Nga mouse model. Ex vivo visual examination of AD induction in experimental mice indicated remarkable control of NP-based formulations in reducing pathological severity of AD-like skin lesions. Therapeutic effectiveness of NP-based formulations was also evaluated by comparing skin thickness of AD-induced NP-treated mice (456±27 µm) with that of atopic mice (916±37 µm). Analysis of the immuno-spectrum of AD also revealed the dominance of NP-based formulations in restraining immunoglobulin-E (IgE), histamine, prostaglandin-E2 (PGE2), vascular endothelial growth factor-α (VEGF-α), and T-helper cells (TH1/TH2) producing cytokines in serum and skin biopsies of tested mice. These anti-AD data were further supported by histological findings that revealed alleviated pathological features, including collagen fiber deposition, fibroblasts infiltration, and fragmentation of elastic fibers in experimental mice. Thus, NP-mediated transcutaneous co-delivery of HC and HT can be considered as a promising therapy for managing immunological and histological spectra associated with AD.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  6. Pandurangan AK, Saadatdoust Z, Esa NM, Hamzah H, Ismail A
    Biofactors, 2015 Jan-Feb;41(1):1-14.
    PMID: 25545372 DOI: 10.1002/biof.1195
    Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third most common malignancy in males and the second most common cancer worldwide. Chronic colonic inflammation is a known risk factor for CRC. Cocoa contains many polyphenolic compounds that have beneficial effects in humans. The objective of this study is to explore the antioxidant properties of cocoa in the mouse model of azoxymethane (AOM)/dextran sulfate sodium (DSS)-induced colitis-associated cancer, focusing on the activation of Nrf2 signaling. Mice were treated with AOM/DSS and randomized to receive either a control diet or a 5 and 10% cocoa diet during the study period. On day 62 of the experiment, the entire colon was processed for biochemical and histopathological examination and further evaluations. Increased levels of malondialdehyde (MDA) were observed in AOM/DSS-induced mice; however, subsequent administration of cocoa decreased the MDA. Enzymatic and nonenzymatic antioxidants, such as superoxide dismutase, catalase, glutathione peroxidase and glutathione reductase, were decreased in the AOM/DSS mice. Cocoa treatment increases the activities/levels of enzymatic and nonenzymatic antioxidants. Inflammatory mediators, such as inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase (COX)-2, were elevated during AOM/DSS-induction, and treatment with 5 and 10% cocoa effectively decreases the expression of iNOS and COX-2. The NF-E2-related factor 2 and its downstream targets, such as NQO1 and UDP-GT, were increased by cocoa treatment. The results of our study suggest that cocoa may merit further clinical investigation as a chemopreventive agent that helps prevent CAC.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  7. Salim LZ, Othman R, Abdulla MA, Al-Jashamy K, Ali HM, Hassandarvish P, et al.
    PLoS One, 2014;9(12):e115340.
    PMID: 25531768 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0115340
    BACKGROUND: Thymoquinone is an active ingredient isolated from Nigella sativa (Black Seed). This study aimed to evaluate the in vitro and in vivo anti-leukemic effects of thymoquinone on WEHI-3 cells.

    METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The cytotoxic effect of thymoquinone was assessed using an MTT assay, while the inhibitory effect of thymoquinone on murine WEHI-3 cell growth was due to the induction of apoptosis, as evidenced by chromatin condensation dye, Hoechst 33342 and acridine orange/propidium iodide fluorescent staining. In addition, Annexin V staining for early apoptosis was performed using flowcytometric analysis. Apoptosis was found to be associated with the cell cycle arrest at the S phase. Expression of Bax, Bcl2 and HSP 70 proteins were observed by western blotting. The effects of thymoquinone on BALB/c mice injected with WEHI-3 cells were indicated by the decrease in the body, spleen and liver weights of the animal, as compared to the control.

    CONCLUSION: Thymoquinone promoted natural killer cell activities. This compound showed high toxicity against WEHI-3 cell line which was confirmed by an increase of the early apoptosis, followed by up-regulation of the anti-apoptotic protein, Bcl2, and down-regulation of the apoptotic protein, Bax. On the other hand, high reduction of the spleen and liver weight, and significant histopathology study of spleen and liver confirmed that thymoquinone inhibited WEHI-3 growth in the BALB/c mice. Results from this study highlight the potential of thymoquinone to be developed as an anti-leukemic agent.

    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  8. Abdul Nasir NA, Agarwal R, Vasudevan S, Tripathy M, Alyautdin R, Ismail NM
    Mol. Vis., 2014;20:822-35.
    PMID: 24940038
    Oxidative and nitrosative stress underlies cataractogenesis, and therefore, various antioxidants have been investigated for anticataract properties. Several vitamin E analogs have also been studied for anticataract effects due to their antioxidant properties; however, the anticataract properties of tocotrienols have not been investigated. In this study, we investigated the effects of topically applied tocotrienol on the onset and progression of cataract and lenticular oxidative and nitrosative stress in galactosemic rats.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  9. Giribabu N, Kumar KE, Rekha SS, Muniandy S, Salleh N
    PMID: 25104050 DOI: 10.1186/1472-6882-14-291
    We hypothesized that C. borivilianum root, known to improve male reproductive performance, prevents impairment in characteristics, morphology and elevation of oxidative stress in sperm of diabetics. We therefore investigated the effect of aqueous root extract of C. borivilianum on these parameters in diabetic rat model.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  10. Rothan HA, Bahrani H, Shankar EM, Rahman NA, Yusof R
    Antiviral Res, 2014 Aug;108:173-80.
    PMID: 24929084 DOI: 10.1016/j.antiviral.2014.05.019
    Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) outbreaks have led to a serious economic burden, as the available treatment strategies can only alleviate disease symptoms, and no effective therapeutics or vaccines are currently available for human use. Here, we report the use of a new cost-effective approach involving production of a recombinant antiviral peptide-fusion protein that is scalable for the treatment of CHIKV infection. A peptide-fusion recombinant protein LATA-PAP1-THAN that was generated by joining Latarcin (LATA) peptide with the N-terminus of the PAP1 antiviral protein, and the Thanatin (THAN) peptide to the C-terminus, was produced in Escherichia coli as inclusion bodies. The antiviral LATA-PAP1-THAN protein showed 89.0% reduction of viral plaque formation compared with PAP1 (46.0%), LATA (67.0%) or THAN (79.3%) peptides alone. The LATA-PAP1-THAN protein reduced the viral RNA load that was 0.89-fold compared with the untreated control cells. We also showed that PAP1 resulted in 0.44-fold reduction, and THAN and LATA resulting in 0.78-fold and 0.73-fold reductions, respectively. The LATA-PAP1-THAN protein inhibited CHIKV replication in the Vero cells at an EC50 of 11.2μg/ml, which is approximately half of the EC50 of PAP1 (23.7μg/ml) and protected the CHIKV-infected mice at the dose of 0.75mg/ml. We concluded that production of antiviral peptide-fusion protein in E. coli as inclusion bodies could accentuate antiviral activities, enhance cellular internalisation, and could reduce product toxicity to host cells and is scalable to epidemic response quantities.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  11. Abu N, Akhtar MN, Yeap SK, Lim KL, Ho WY, Zulfadli AJ, et al.
    PLoS One, 2014;9(10):e105244.
    PMID: 25286005 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0105244
    INTRODUCTION: The kava-kava plant (Piper methsyticum) is traditionally known as the pacific elixir by the pacific islanders for its role in a wide range of biological activities. The extract of the roots of this plant contains a variety of interesting molecules including Flavokawain A and this molecule is known to have anti-cancer properties. Breast cancer is still one of the leading diagnosed cancers in women today. The metastatic process is also very pertinent in the progression of tumorigenesis.

    METHODS: MCF-7 and MDA-MB231 cells were treated with several concentrations of FKA. The apoptotic analysis was done through the MTT assay, BrdU assay, Annexin V analysis, cell cycle analysis, JC-1 mitochondrial dye, AO/PI dual staining, caspase 8/9 fluorometric assay, quantitative real time PCR and western blot. For the metastatic assays, the in vitro scratch assay, trans-well migration/invasion assay, HUVEC tube formation assay, ex vivo rat aortic ring assay, quantitative real time PCR and western blot were employed.

    RESULTS: We have investigated the effects of FKA on the apoptotic and metastatic process in two breast cancer cell lines. FKA induces apoptosis in both MCF-7 and MDA-MB231 in a dose dependent manner through the intrinsic mitochondrial pathway. Additionally, FKA selectively induces a G2/M arrest in the cell cycle machinery of MDA-MB231 and G1 arrest in MCF-7. This suggests that FKA's anti-cancer activity is dependent on the p53 status. Moreover, FKA also halted the migration and invasion process in MDA-MB231. The similar effects can be seen in the inhibition of the angiogenesis process as well.

    CONCLUSIONS: FKA managed to induce apoptosis and inhibit the metastatic process in two breast cancer cell lines, in vitro. Overall, FKA may serve as a promising candidate in the search of a new anti-cancer drug especially in halting the metastatic process but further in vivo evidence is needed.

    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  12. Hoque MA, Islam MS, Islam MN, Kato T, Nishino N, Ito A, et al.
    Amino Acids, 2014 Oct;46(10):2435-44.
    PMID: 25048030 DOI: 10.1007/s00726-014-1800-5
    Inhibitors of histone deacetylases (HDACs) are a promising class of anticancer agents that have an effect on gene regulation. The naturally occurring cyclic depsipeptide FK228 containing disulfide and Largazole possessing thioester functionalities act as pro-drugs and share the same HDAC inhibition mechanism in cell. Inspired from these facts, we have reported bicyclic tetrapeptide disulfide HDAC inhibitors resembling FK228 with potent activity and enhanced selectivity. In the present study, we report the design and synthesis of several mono and bicyclic tetrapeptide thioester HDAC inhibitors that share the inhibition mechanism similar to Largazole. Most of the compounds showed HDAC1 and HDAC4 inhibition and p21 promoting activity in nanomolar ranges. Among these the monocyclic peptides 1, 2 and bicyclic peptide, 4 are notable demanding more advanced research to be promising anticancer drug candidates.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  13. Omidbakhsh R, Rajabli B, Nasoohi S, Khallaghi B, Mohamed Z, Naidu M, et al.
    Exp Brain Res, 2014 Nov;232(11):3687-96.
    PMID: 25098558 DOI: 10.1007/s00221-014-4052-4
    Lipopolysaccharide is an endotoxin to induce sickness behavior in several animal models to explore the link between immune activation and cognition. Neuroinflammation playing a pivotal role in disease progress is evidently influenced by sphingosine-1-phosphate. As one of the sphingosine analogs in clinical use for multiple sclerosis, fingolimod (FTY720) was shown to substantially affect gene expression profile in the context of AD in our previous experiments. The present study was designed to evaluate the drug efficacy in the context of the mere inflammatory context leading to memory impairment. FTY720 was repeatedly administered for a few days before or after intracerebral lipopolysaccharide (LPS) injection in rats. Animal's brains were then assigned to histological as well as multiplex mRNA assay following memory performance test. Both FTY720 pre-treatment and post-treatment were similarly capable of ameliorating LPS-induced memory impairment as assessed by passive avoidance test. Such amending effects may be partly accountable by the concomitant alterations in transcriptional levels of mitogen-activated protein kinases as well as inflammatory genes determined by QuantiGene Plex analysis. These findings confirming FTY720 application benefits suggest its efficacy may not differ significantly while considered either as a preventive or as a therapeutic approach against neuroinflammation.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  14. Shawish HB, Wong WY, Wong YL, Loh SW, Looi CY, Hassandarvish P, et al.
    PLoS One, 2014;9(6):e100933.
    PMID: 24977407 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0100933
    The biological properties of thiosemicarbazone have been widely reported. The incorporation of some transition metals such as Fe, Ni and Cu to thiosemicarbazone complexes is known to enhance its biological effects. In this study, we incorporated nickel(II) ions into thiosemicarbazone with N4-substitution groups H3L (H; H3L1, CH3; H3L2, C6H5; H3L3 and C2H5; H3L4) and examined its potential anti-inflammatory activity.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  15. Muslimov IA, Tuzhilin A, Tang TH, Wong RK, Bianchi R, Tiedge H
    J. Cell Biol., 2014 May 26;205(4):493-510.
    PMID: 24841565 DOI: 10.1083/jcb.201310045
    A key determinant of neuronal functionality and plasticity is the targeted delivery of select ribonucleic acids (RNAs) to synaptodendritic sites of protein synthesis. In this paper, we ask how dendritic RNA transport can be regulated in a manner that is informed by the cell's activity status. We describe a molecular mechanism in which inducible interactions of noncanonical RNA motif structures with targeting factor heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein (hnRNP) A2 form the basis for activity-dependent dendritic RNA targeting. High-affinity interactions between hnRNP A2 and conditional GA-type RNA targeting motifs are critically dependent on elevated Ca(2+) levels in a narrow concentration range. Dendritic transport of messenger RNAs that carry such GA motifs is inducible by influx of Ca(2+) through voltage-dependent calcium channels upon β-adrenergic receptor activation. The combined data establish a functional correspondence between Ca(2+)-dependent RNA-protein interactions and activity-inducible RNA transport in dendrites. They also indicate a role of genomic retroposition in the phylogenetic development of RNA targeting competence.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  16. Rothan HA, Bahrani H, Mohamed Z, Abd Rahman N, Yusof R
    PLoS One, 2014;9(4):e94561.
    PMID: 24722532 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0094561
    Dengue virus (DENV) broadly disseminates in tropical and sub-tropical countries and there are no vaccine or anti-dengue drugs available. DENV outbreaks cause serious economic burden due to infection complications that requires special medical care and hospitalization. This study presents a new strategy for inexpensive production of anti-DENV peptide-fusion protein to prevent and/or treat DENV infection. Antiviral cationic peptides protegrin-1 (PG1) and plectasin (PLSN) were fused with MAP30 protein to produce recombinant antiviral peptide-fusion protein (PG1-MAP30-PLSN) as inclusion bodies in E. coli. High yield production of PG1-MAP30-PLSN protein was achieved by solubilization of inclusion bodies in alkaline buffer followed by the application of appropriate refolding techniques. Antiviral PG1-MAP30-PLSN protein considerably inhibited DENV protease (NS2B-NS3pro) with half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) 0.5±0.1 μM. The real-time proliferation assay (RTCA) and the end-point proliferation assay (MTT assay) showed that the maximal-nontoxic dose of the peptide-fusion protein against Vero cells is approximately 0.67±0.2 μM. The cell-based assays showed considerable inhibition of the peptide-fusion protein against binding and proliferating stages of DENV2 into the target cells. The peptide-fusion protein protected DENV2-challeged mice with 100% of survival at the dose of 50 mg/kg. In conclusion, producing recombinant antiviral peptide-fusion protein by combining short antiviral peptide with a central protein owning similar activity could be useful to minimize the overall cost of short peptide production and take advantage of its synergistic antiviral activities.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  17. Janbaz KH, Arif J, Saqib F, Imran I, Ashraf M, Zia-Ul-Haq M, et al.
    PMID: 24559094 DOI: 10.1186/1472-6882-14-71
    Isodon rugosus is used in folk Pakistan traditional practices to cure ailments related to gastrointestinal, respiratory and cardiovascular problems. Present study was undertaken to validate these folkloric uses.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  18. Rothan HA, Mohamed Z, Suhaeb AM, Rahman NA, Yusof R
    OMICS, 2013 Nov;17(11):560-7.
    PMID: 24044366 DOI: 10.1089/omi.2013.0056
    Dengue virus infects millions of people worldwide, and there is no vaccine or anti-dengue therapeutic available. Antimicrobial peptides have been shown to possess effective antiviral activity against various viruses. One of the main limitations of developing these peptides as potent antiviral drugs is the high cost of production. In this study, high yield production of biologically active plectasin peptide was inexpensively achieved by producing tandem plectasin peptides as inclusion bodies in E. coli. Antiviral activity of the recombinant peptide towards dengue serotype-2 NS2B-NS3 protease (DENV2 NS2B-NS3pro) was assessed as a target to inhibit dengue virus replication in Vero cells. Single units of recombinant plectasin were collected after applying consecutive steps of refolding, cleaving by Factor Xa, and nickel column purification to obtain recombinant proteins of high purity. The maximal nontoxic dose (MNTD) of the recombinant peptide against Vero cells was 20 μM (100 μg/mL). The reaction velocity of DENV2 NS2B-NS3pro decreased significantly after increasing concentrations of recombinant plectasin were applied to the reaction mixture. Plectasin peptide noncompetitively inhibited DENV2 NS2B-NS3pro at Ki value of 5.03 ± 0.98 μM. The percentage of viral inhibition was more than 80% at the MNTD value of plectasin. In this study, biologically active recombinant plectasin which was able to inhibit dengue protease and viral replication in Vero cells was successfully produced in E. coli in a time- and cost- effective method. These findings are potentially important in the development of potent therapeutics against dengue infection.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  19. Balasubramaniam VR, Hong Wai T, Ario Tejo B, Omar AR, Syed Hassan S
    PLoS One, 2013;8(9):e72429.
    PMID: 24073193 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0072429
    We constructed a novel chicken (Gallus gallus) lung cDNA library fused inside yeast acting domain vector (pGADT7). Using yeast two-hybrid screening with highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) nucleoprotein (NP) from the strain (A/chicken/Malaysia/5858/2004(H5N1)) as bait, and the Gallus gallus lung cDNA library as prey, a novel interaction between the Gallus gallus cellular RNA export adaptor protein Aly/REF and the viral NP was identified. This interaction was confirmed and validated with mammalian two hybrid studies and co-immunoprecipitation assay. Cellular localization studies using confocal microscopy showed that NP and Aly/REF co-localize primarily in the nucleus. Further investigations by mammalian two hybrid studies into the binding of NP of other subtypes of influenza virus such as the swine A/New Jersey/1976/H1N1 and pandemic A/Malaysia/854/2009(H1N1) to human Aly/REF, also showed that the NP of these viruses interacts with human Aly/REF. Our findings are also supported by docking studies which showed tight and favorable binding between H5N1 NP and human Aly/REF, using crystal structures from Protein Data Bank. siRNA knockdown of Aly/REF had little effect on the export of HPAI NP and other viral RNA as it showed no significant reduction in virus titer. However, UAP56, another component of the TREX complex, which recruits Aly/REF to mRNA was found to interact even better with H5N1 NP through molecular docking studies. Both these proteins also co-localizes in the nucleus at early infection similar to Aly/REF. Intriguingly, knockdown of UAP56 in A549 infected cells shows significant reduction in viral titer (close to 10 fold reduction). Conclusively, our study have opened new avenues for research of other cellular RNA export adaptors crucial in aiding viral RNA export such as the SRSF3, 9G8 and ASF/SF2 that may play role in influenza virus RNA nucleocytoplasmic transport.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
  20. Abdul Hafid SR, Chakravarthi S, Nesaretnam K, Radhakrishnan AK
    PLoS One, 2013;8(9):e74753.
    PMID: 24069344 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0074753
    Tocotrienol-rich fraction (TRF) from palm oil is reported to possess anti-cancer and immune-enhancing effects. In this study, TRF supplementation was used as an adjuvant to enhance the anti-cancer effects of dendritic cells (DC)-based cancer vaccine in a syngeneic mouse model of breast cancer. Female BALB/c mice were inoculated with 4T1 cells in mammary pad to induce tumor. When the tumor was palpable, the mice in the experimental groups were injected subcutaneously with DC-pulsed with tumor lysate (TL) from 4T1 cells (DC+TL) once a week for three weeks and fed daily with 1 mg TRF or vehicle. Control mice received unpulsed DC and were fed with vehicle. The combined therapy of using DC+TL injections and TRF supplementation (DC+TL+TRF) inhibited (p<0.05) tumor growth and metastasis. Splenocytes from the DC+TL+TRF group cultured with mitomycin-C (MMC)-treated 4T1 cells produced higher (p<0.05) levels of IFN-γ and IL-12. The cytotoxic T-lymphocyte (CTL) assay also showed enhanced tumor-specific killing (p<0.05) by CD8(+) T-lymphocytes isolated from mice in the DC+TL+TRF group. This study shows that TRF has the potential to be used as an adjuvant to enhance effectiveness of DC-based vaccines.
    Matched MeSH terms: Animals
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