28 new pyrrolidine types of compounds as analogues for natural polyhydroxy alkaloids of codonopsinine were evaluated for their anti-MRSA activity using MIC and MBC value determination assay against a panel of S. aureus isolates. One pyrrolidine compound, MFM 501, exhibited good inhibitory activity with MIC value of 15.6 to 31.3 μg/mL against 55 S. aureus isolates (43 MRSA and 12 MSSA isolates). The active compound also displayed MBC values between 250 and 500 μg/mL against 58 S. aureus isolates (45 MRSA and 13 MSSA isolates) implying that MFM 501 has a bacteriostatic rather than bactericidal effect against both MRSA and MSSA isolates. In addition, MFM 501 showed no apparent cytotoxicity activity towards three normal cell lines (WRL-68, Vero, and 3T3) with IC50 values of >625 µg/mL. Selectivity index (SI) of MFM 501 gave a value of >10 suggesting that MFM 501 is significant and suitable for further in vivo investigations. These results suggested that synthetically derived intermediate compounds based on natural products may play an important role in the discovery of new anti-infective agents against MRSA.
A more effective vaccine against tuberculosis (TB) is urgently needed. Based on its high genetic homology with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb), the nonpathogenic mycobacteria, Mycobacterium smegmatis (Ms), could be an attractive source of potential antigens to be included in such a vaccine. We evaluated the capability of lipid-based preparations obtained from Ms to provide a protective response in Balb/c mice after challenge with Mtb H37Rv strain. The intratracheal model of progressive pulmonary TB was used to assess the level of protection in terms of bacterial load as well as the pathological changes in the lungs of immunized Balb/c mice following challenge with Mtb. Mice immunized with the lipid-based preparation from Ms either adjuvanted with Alum (LMs-AL) or nonadjuvanted (LMs) showed significant reductions in bacterial load (P < 0.01) compared to the negative control group (animals immunized with phosphate buffered saline (PBS)). Both lipid formulations showed the same level of protection as Bacille Calmette and Guerin (BCG). Regarding the pathologic changes in the lungs, mice immunized with both lipid formulations showed less pneumonic area when compared with the PBS group (P < 0.01) and showed similar results compared with the BCG group. These findings suggest the potential of LMs as a promising vaccine candidate against TB.
The thermoalkaline protease enzyme from pitaya (Hylocereus polyrhizus) waste was purified by a factor of 221.2 with 71.3% recovery using ammonium sulphate precipitation, gel filtration, and cation exchange chromatography. Gel filtration chromatography together with sodium dodecyl sulphate gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) revealed that the enzyme is monomeric with a molecular weight of 26.7 kDa. The apparent K m and V max of the protease were 2.8 mg/mL and 31.20 u/min, respectively. The optimum pH and temperature were 8.0 and 70°C. The enzyme was highly active and stable over a wide pH range (from pH 3.0 to pH 11.0 with the optimum activity at pH 8.0). The protease has broad specificity toward azocasein, casein, hemoglobin, and gelatine. Activity of the enzyme was inhibited by Fe(2+) and Zn(2+), while protease activity was increased in the presence of Ca(2+) and Mg(2+) and Cu(2+) by factors of 125%, 110%, and 105%, respectively. The alkaline protease showed extreme stability toward surfactants and oxidizing agent. The purified protease exhibited extreme stability in the presence of organic solvents and inhibitors. In addition, the enzyme was relativity stable toward organic solvents and chelating agents, such as ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA). The enzyme, derived from pitaya peel, possesses unique characteristics and could be used in various industrial and biotechnological applications.
Background. Caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE) has been reported to possess time-dependent fibrinolytic activity by in vitro assay. This study is aimed at investigating fibrinolytic dose-dependent activity of CAPE using in vitro assays. Methods. Standardized human whole blood (WB) clots were incubated in either blank controls or different concentrations of CAPE (3.75, 7.50, 15.00, 22.50, and 30.00 mM). After 3 hours, D-dimer (DD) levels and WB clot weights were measured for each concentration. Thromboelastography (TEG) parameters were recorded following CAPE incubation, and fibrin morphology was examined under a confocal microscope. Results. Overall, mean DD (μg/mL) levels were significantly different across samples incubated with different CAPE concentrations, and the median pre- and postincubation WB clot weights (grams) were significantly decreased for each CAPE concentration. Fibrin removal was observed microscopically and indicated dose-dependent effects. Based on the TEG test, the Ly30 fibrinolytic parameter was significantly different between samples incubated with two different CAPE concentrations (15.0 and 22.50 mM). The 50% effective dose (ED50) of CAPE (based on DD) was 1.99 mg/mL. Conclusions. This study suggests that CAPE possesses fibrinolytic activity following in vitro incubation and that it has dose-dependent activities. Therefore, further investigation into CAPE as a potential alternative thrombolytic agent should be conducted.
Thymoquinone (TQ) has been shown to exhibit antitumor properties. Thymoquinone-loaded nanostructured lipid carrier (TQ-NLC) was developed to improve the bioavailability and cytotoxicity of TQ. This study was conducted to determine the cytotoxic effects of TQ-NLC on breast cancer (MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7) and cervical cancer cell lines (HeLa and SiHa). TQ-NLC was prepared by applying the hot high pressure homogenization technique. The mean particle size of TQ-NLC was 35.66 ± 0.1235 nm with a narrow polydispersity index (PDI) lower than 0.25. The zeta potential of TQ-NLC was greater than -30 mV. Polysorbate 80 helps to increase the stability of TQ-NLC. Differential scanning calorimetry showed that TQ-NLC has a melting point of 56.73°C, which is lower than that of the bulk material. The encapsulation efficiency of TQ in TQ-NLC was 97.63 ± 0.1798% as determined by HPLC analysis. TQ-NLC exhibited antiproliferative activity towards all the cell lines in a dose-dependent manner which was most cytotoxic towards MDA-MB-231 cells. Cell shrinkage was noted following treatment of MDA-MB-231 cells with TQ-NLC with an increase of apoptotic cell population (P < 0.05). TQ-NLC also induced cell cycle arrest. TQ-NLC was most cytotoxic towards MDA-MB-231 cells. It induced apoptosis and cell cycle arrest in the cells.
Phosphate solubilizing bacteria (PSB) can convert insoluble form of phosphorous to an available form. Applications of PSB as inoculants increase the phosphorus uptake by plant in the field. In this study, isolation and precise identification of PSB were carried out in Malaysian (Serdang) oil palm field (University Putra Malaysia). Identification and phylogenetic analysis of 8 better isolates were carried out by 16S rRNA gene sequencing in which as a result five isolates belong to the Beta subdivision of Proteobacteria, one isolate was related to the Gama subdivision of Proteobacteria, and two isolates were related to the Firmicutes. Bacterial isolates of 6upmr, 2upmr, 19upmnr, 10upmr, and 24upmr were identified as Alcaligenes faecalis. Also, bacterial isolates of 20upmnr and 17upmnr were identified as Bacillus cereus and Vagococcus carniphilus, respectively, and bacterial isolates of 31upmr were identified as Serratia plymuthica. Molecular identification and characterization of oil palm strains as the specific phosphate solubilizer can reduce the time and cost of producing effective inoculate (biofertilizer) in an oil palm field.
Disability caused by migraine may be one of the main causes of burden contributing to poor quality of life (QOL) among migraine patients. Thus, this study aimed to measure QOL among migraine sufferers in comparison with healthy controls.
Much debate in schizotypal research has centred on the factor structure of the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (SPQ), with research variously showing higher-order dimensionality consisting of two to seven dimensions. In addition, cross-cultural support for the stability of those factors remains limited. Here, we examined the factor structure of the SPQ among British and Trinidadian adults. Participants from a White British subsample (n = 351) resident in the UK and from an African Caribbean subsample (n = 284) resident in Trinidad completed the SPQ. The higher-order factor structure of the SPQ was analysed through confirmatory factor analysis, followed by multiple-group analysis for the model of best fit. Between-group differences for sex and ethnicity were investigated using multivariate analysis of variance in relation to the higher-order domains. The model of best-fit was the four-factor structure, which demonstrated measurement invariance across groups. Additionally, these data had an adequate fit for two alternative models: (a) 3-factor and (b) modified 4-factor model. The British subsample had significantly higher scores across all domains than the Trinidadian group, and men scored significantly higher on the disorganised domain than women. The four-factor structure received confirmatory support and, importantly, support for use with populations varying in ethnicity and culture.
A cross-sectional study was carried out to determine the arsenic (As) and cadmium (Cd) concentrations in blood, urine, and drinking water as well as the health implications on 100 residents in an urban and a rural community. Results showed the blood As, urinary Cd, DNA damage, and water As and Cs were significantly (P < 0.001) higher in the rural community. Findings showed significant (P < 0.005) correlations between blood As and DNA damage with household income, years of residence, and total glasses of daily water consumption among the rural residents. The urinary NAG concentrations, years of residence, milk powder intake (glass/week), and seafood intake (per week) were significantly correlated (P < 0.005) with urinary Cd concentrations among respondents. In addition, urinary Cd level significantly influenced the urinary NAG concentrations (P < 0.001). The rural respondents experienced significantly higher lymphocyte DNA damage and blood As influenced by their years of residence and water consumption. The Cd in drinking water also resulted in the rural respondents having significantly higher urinary NAG which had a significant relationship with urinary Cd.
Calcium phosphate-based bone substitutes have not been used to repair load-bearing bone defects due to their weak mechanical property. In this study, we reevaluated the functional outcomes of combining ceramic block with osteogenic-induced mesenchymal stem cells and platelet-rich plasma (TEB) to repair critical-sized segmental tibial defect. Comparisons were made with fresh marrow-impregnated ceramic block (MIC) and partially demineralized allogeneic bone block (ALLO). Six New Zealand White female rabbits were used in each study group and three rabbits with no implants were used as negative controls. By Day 90, 4/6 rabbits in TEB group and 2/6 in ALLO and MIC groups resumed normal gait pattern. Union was achieved significantly faster in TEB group with a radiological score of 4.50 ± 0.78 versus ALLO (1.06 ± 0.32), MIC (1.28 ± 0.24), and negative controls (0). Histologically, TEB group scored the highest percentage of new bone (82% ± 5.1%) compared to ALLO (5% ± 2.5%) and MIC (26% ± 5.2%). Biomechanically, TEB-treated tibiae achieved the highest compressive strength (43.50 ± 12.72 MPa) compared to those treated with ALLO (15.15 ± 3.57 MPa) and MIC (23.28 ± 6.14 MPa). In conclusion, TEB can repair critical-sized segmental load-bearing bone defects and restore limb function.
Biosensors research is a fast growing field in which tens of thousands of papers have been published over the years, and the industry is now worth billions of dollars. The biosensor products have found their applications in numerous industries including food and beverages, agricultural, environmental, medical diagnostics, and pharmaceutical industries and many more. Even though numerous biosensors have been developed for detection of proteins, peptides, enzymes, and numerous other biomolecules for diverse applications, their applications in tissue engineering have remained limited. In recent years, there has been a growing interest in application of novel biosensors in cell culture and tissue engineering, for example, real-time detection of small molecules such as glucose, lactose, and H2O2 as well as serum proteins of large molecular size, such as albumin and alpha-fetoprotein, and inflammatory cytokines, such as IFN-g and TNF-α. In this review, we provide an overview of the recent advancements in biosensors for tissue engineering applications.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic, systemic, inflammatory disease primarily involving inflammation of the joints. Although the management of the disease has advanced significantly in the past three decades, there is still no cure for RA. The aim of this study was to determine the therapeutic efficacy of δ-tocotrienol, in the rat model of collagen-induced arthritis (CIA). Arthritis was induced by intradermal injection of collagen type II emulsified in complete Freund's adjuvant. CIA rats were orally treated with δ-tocotrienol (10 mg/kg) or glucosamine hydrochloride (300 mg/kg) from day 25 to 50. Efficacy was assessed based on the ability to reduce paw edema, histopathological changes, suppression of collagen-specific T-cells, and a reduction in C-reactive protein (CRP) levels. It was established that δ-tocotrienol had the most significant impact in lowering paw edema when compared to glucosamine treatment. Paw edema changes correlated well with histopathological analysis where there was a significant reversal of changes in groups treated with δ-tocotrienol. The results suggest that δ-tocotrienol is efficient in amelioration of collagen-induced arthritis. Vitamin E delta-tocotrienol may be of therapeutic value against rheumatoid arthritis.
The aim of the present study was to characterize the phenolic acids, flavonoids, and antioxidant properties of monofloral honey collected from five different districts in Bangladesh. A new high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) equipped with a UV detector method was developed for the identification of the phenolic acids and flavonoids. A total of five different phenolic acids were identified, with the most abundant being caffeic acid, benzoic acid, gallic acid, followed by chlorogenic acid and trans-cinnamic acid. The flavonoids, kaempferol, and catechin were most abundant, followed by myricetin and naringenin. The mean moisture content, total sugar content, and color characteristics of the honey samples were 18.36 ± 0.95%, 67.40 ± 5.63 g/100 g, and 129.27 ± 34.66 mm Pfund, respectively. The mean total phenolic acids, total flavonoid content, and proline content were 199.20 ± 135.23, 46.73 ± 34.16, and 556.40 ± 376.86 mg/kg, respectively, while the mean FRAP values and DPPH radical scavenging activity were 327.30 ± 231.87 μM Fe (II)/100 g and 36.95 ± 20.53%, respectively. Among the different types of honey, kalijira exhibited the highest phenolics and antioxidant properties. Overall, our study confirms that all the investigated honey samples are good sources of phenolic acids and flavonoids with good antioxidant properties.
The current study evaluates the impact of high fructose feeding in rat model of gentamicin induced nephrotoxicity. Sprague-Dawley rats weighing 180-200 g were randomized into four groups; (C) received standard rodents chow with free access to ad libitum drinking water for 8 weeks and was considered as control, (F) received standard rodents chow with free access to drinking water supplemented with 20% (W/V) fructose for the same abovementioned period, (FG) was fed as group F and was given 80 mg/kg (body weight)/day gentamicin sulphate intraperitoneally during the last 20 days of the feeding period, and (G) was given gentamicin as above and fed as group C. Renal function was assessed at the end of the treatment period through measuring serum creatinine, uric acid and albumin, creatinine clearance, absolute and fractional excretion of both sodium and potassium, twenty-four-hour urinary excretion of albumin, and renal histology. For metabolic syndrome assessment, fasting plasma glucose and insulin were measured and oral glucose tolerance test was performed throughout the treatment period. Results showed that gentamicin enhances progression of fructose induced metabolic syndrome. On the other hand, fructose pretreatment before gentamicin injection produced a comparable degree of renal dysfunction to those which were given fructose-free water but the picture of nephrotoxicity was somewhat altered as it was characterized by higher extent of glomerular congestion and protein urea. Overall, more vigilance is required when nephrotoxic drugs are prescribed for patients with fructose induced metabolic syndrome.
Chiloscyllium, commonly called bamboo shark, can be found inhabiting the waters of the Indo-West Pacific around East Asian countries such as Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand, Singapore, and Indonesia. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List has categorized them as nearly threatened sharks out of their declining population status due to overexploitation. A molecular study was carried out to portray the systematic relationships within Chiloscyllium species using 12S rRNA and cytochrome b gene sequences. Maximum parsimony and Bayesian were used to reconstruct their phylogeny trees. A total of 381 bp sequences' lengths were successfully aligned in the 12S rRNA region, with 41 bp sites being parsimony-informative. In the cytochrome b region, a total of 1120 bp sites were aligned, with 352 parsimony-informative characters. All analyses yield phylogeny trees on which C. indicum has close relationships with C. plagiosum. C. punctatum is sister taxon to both C. indicum and C. plagiosum while C. griseum and C. hasseltii formed their own clade as sister taxa. These Chiloscyllium classifications can be supported by some morphological characters (lateral dermal ridges on the body, coloring patterns, and appearance of hypobranchials and basibranchial plate) that can clearly be used to differentiate each species.
Toxoplasma gondii infects all warm-blooded animals, including humans, causing serious public health problems and great economic loss for the food industry. Commonly used serological tests require costly and hazardous preparation of whole Toxoplasma lysate antigens from tachyzoites. Here, we have evaluated an alternative method for antigen production, which involved a prokaryotic expression system. Specifically, we expressed T. gondii dense granular protein-5 (GRA5) in Escherichia coli and isolated it by affinity purification. The serodiagnostic potential of the purified recombinant GRA5 (rGRA5) was tested through Western blot analysis against 212 human patient serum samples. We found that rGRA5 protein was 100% specific for analysis of toxoplasmosis-negative human sera. Also, rGRA5 was able to detect acute and chronic T. gondii infections (sensitivities of 46.8% and 61.2%, resp.).
Sago palm (Metroxylon sagu) is a perennial plant native to Southeast Asia and exploited mainly for the starch content in its trunk. Genetic improvement of sago palm is extremely slow when compared to other annual starch crops. Urgent attention is needed to improve the sago palm planting material and can be achieved through nonconventional methods. We have previously developed a tissue culture method for sago palm, which is used to provide the planting materials and to develop a genetic transformation procedure. Here, we report the genetic transformation of sago embryonic callus derived from suspension culture using Agrobacterium tumefaciens and gene gun systems. The transformed embryoids cells were selected against Basta (concentration 10 to 30 mg/L). Evidence of foreign genes integration and function of the bar and gus genes were verified via gene specific PCR amplification, gus staining, and dot blot analysis. This study showed that the embryogenic callus was the most suitable material for transformation as compared to the fine callus, embryoid stage, and initiated shoots. The gene gun transformation showed higher transformation efficiency than the ones transformed using Agrobacterium when targets were bombarded once or twice using 280 psi of helium pressure at 6 to 8 cm distance.