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  1. Lau YS, Machha A, Achike FI, Murugan D, Mustafa MR
    Exp. Biol. Med. (Maywood), 2012 Jan;237(1):93-8.
    PMID: 22156043 DOI: 10.1258/ebm.2011.011145
    Boldine, a major aporphine alkaloid found in Chilean boldo tree, is a potent antioxidant. Oxidative stress plays a detrimental role in the pathogenesis of endothelial dysfunction in hypertension. In the present study, we investigated the effects of boldine on endothelial dysfunction in hypertension using spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR), the most studied animal model of hypertension. SHR and their age-matched normotensive Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats were treated with boldine (20 mg/kg per day) or its vehicle, which served as control, for seven days. Control SHR displayed higher systolic blood pressure (SBP), reduced endothelium-dependent aortic relaxation to acetylcholine (ACh), marginally attenuated endothelium-independent aortic relaxation to sodium nitroprusside (SNP), increased aortic superoxide and peroxynitrite production, and enhanced p47(phox) protein expression as compared with control WKY rats. Boldine treatment significantly lowered SBP in SHR but not in WKY. Boldine treatment enhanced the maximal relaxation to ACh in SHR, but had no effect in WKY, whereas the sensitivity to ACh was increased in both SHR and WKY aortas. Boldine treatment enhanced sensitivity, but was without effect on maximal aortic relaxation responses, to SNP in both WKY and SHR aortas. In addition, boldine treatment lowered aortic superoxide and peroxynitrite production and downregulated p47(phox) protein expression in SHR aortas, but had no effect in the WKY control. These results show that boldine treatment exerts endothelial protective effects in hypertension, achieved, at least in part, through the inhibition of NADPH-mediated superoxide production.
  2. Tong CK, Vidyadaran S
    Exp. Biol. Med. (Maywood), 2016 Sep;241(15):1669-75.
    PMID: 27555616 DOI: 10.1177/1535370216664430
    Microglia begin colonizing the developing brain as early as embryonic day 9, prior to the emergence of neurons and other glia. Their ontogeny is also distinct from other central nervous system cells, as they derive from yolk sac hematopoietic progenitors and not neural progenitors. In this review, we feature these unique characteristics of microglia and assess the spatiotemporal similarities between microglia colonization of the central nervous system and embryonic neurogenesis. We also infer to existing evidence for microglia function from embryonic through to postnatal neurodevelopment to postulate roles for microglia in neurogenesis.
  3. Agarwal R, Agarwal P
    Exp. Biol. Med. (Maywood), 2017 02;242(4):374-383.
    PMID: 27798117 DOI: 10.1177/1535370216675065
    Disturbances of extracellular matrix homeostasis are associated with a number of pathological conditions. The ability of extracellular matrix to provide contextual information and hence control the individual or collective cellular behavior is increasingly being recognized. Hence, newer therapeutic approaches targeting extracellular matrix remodeling are widely investigated. We reviewed the current literature showing the effects of resveratrol on various aspects of extracellular matrix remodeling. This review presents a summary of the effects of resveratrol on extracellular matrix deposition and breakdown. Mechanisms of action of resveratrol in extracellular matrix deposition involving growth factors and their signaling pathways are discussed. Involvement of phosphoinositol-3-kinase/Akt and mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways and role of transcription factors and sirtuins on the effects of resveratrol on extracellular matrix homeostasis are summarized. It is evident from the literature presented in this review that resveratrol has significant effects on both the synthesis and breakdown of extracellular matrix. The major molecular targets of the action of resveratrol are growth factors and their signaling pathways, phosphoinositol-3-kinase/Akt and mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways, transcription factors, and SIRT-1. The effects of resveratrol on extracellular matrix and the molecular targets appear to be related to experimental models, experimental environment as well as the doses.
  4. Subramani B, Subbannagounder S, Ramanathanpullai C, Palanivel S, Ramasamy R
    Exp. Biol. Med. (Maywood), 2017 03;242(6):645-656.
    PMID: 28092181 DOI: 10.1177/1535370216688568
    Redox homeostasis plays a crucial role in the regulation of self-renewal and differentiation of stem cells. However, the behavioral actions of mesenchymal stem cells in redox imbalance state remain elusive. In the present study, the effect of redox imbalance that was induced by either hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) or ascorbic acid on human cardiac-resident (hC-MSCs) and non-resident (umbilical cord) mesenchymal stem cells (hUC-MSCs) was evaluated. Both cells were sensitive and responsive when exposed to either H2O2 or ascorbic acid at a concentration of 400 µmol/L. Ascorbic acid pre-treated cells remarkably ameliorated the reactive oxygen species level when treated with H2O2. The endogenous antioxidative enzyme gene (Sod1, Sod2, TRXR1 and Gpx1) expressions were escalated in both MSCs in response to reactive oxygen species elevation. In contrast, ascorbic acid pre-treated hUC-MSCs attenuated considerable anti-oxidative gene (TRXR1 and Gpx1) expressions, but not the hC-MSCs. Similarly, the cardiogenic gene (Nkx 2.5, Gata4, Mlc2a and β-MHC) and ion-channel gene ( IKDR, IKCa, Ito and INa.TTX) expressions were significantly increased in both MSCs on the oxidative state. On the contrary, reduced environment could not alter the ion-channel gene expression and negatively regulated the cardiogenic gene expressions except for troponin-1 in both cells. In conclusion, redox imbalance potently alters the cardiac-resident and non-resident MSCs stemness, cardiogenic, and ion-channel gene expressions. In comparison with cardiac-resident MSC, non-resident umbilical cord-MSC has great potential to tolerate the redox imbalance and positively respond to cardiac regeneration. Impact statement Human mesenchymal stem cells (h-MSCs) are highly promising candidates for tissue repair in cardiovascular diseases. However, the retention of cells in the infarcted area has been a major challenge due to its poor viability and/or low survival rate after transplantation. The regenerative potential of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) repudiate and enter into premature senescence via oxidative stress. Thus, various strategies have been attempted to improve the MSC survival in 'toxic' conditions. Similarly, we investigated the response of cardiac resident MSC (hC-MSCs) and non-resident MSCs against the oxidative stress induced by H2O2. Supplementation of ascorbic acid (AA) into MSCs culture profoundly rescued the stem cells from oxidative stress induced by H2O2. Our data showed that the pre-treatment of AA is able to inhibit the cell death and thus preserving the viability and differentiation potential of MSCs.
  5. Md Zin SR, Mohamed Z, Alshawsh MA, Wong WF, Kassim NM
    Exp. Biol. Med. (Maywood), 2018 02;243(4):375-385.
    PMID: 29237294 DOI: 10.1177/1535370217748574
    Anastatica hierochuntica L. ( A. hierochuntica), a folk medicinal plant, was evaluated for mutagenic potential via in vitro and in vivo assays. The in vitro assay was conducted according to modified Ames test, while the in vivo study was performed according to Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development guideline for mammalian erythrocyte micronucleus assay. Four groups ( n= 5 males and 5 females per group) Sprague Dawley rats were randomly chosen as the negative control, positive control (received a single intramuscular injection of cyclophosphamide 50 mg/kg), 1000 and, 2000 mg/kg A. hierochuntica aqueous extracts. All groups except the positive control were treated orally for three days. Findings of the in vitro assay showed mutagenic potential of AHAE at 0.04 and 0.2 mg/ml. However, no mutagenic effect was demonstrated in the in vivo study up to 2000 mg/kg. No significant reduction in the polychromatic and normochromatic erythrocytes ratio was noted in any of the groups. Meanwhile, high micronucleated polychromatic erythrocytes frequency was seen in cyclophosphamide-treated group only. These findings could perhaps be due to insufficient dosage of A. hierochuntica aqueous extracts to cause genetic damage on the bone marrow target cells. Further acute and chronic in vivo toxicity studies may be required to draw pertinent conclusion on the safety aspect of A. hierochuntica aqueous extracts consumption. Impact statement In this paper, we report on the mutagenicity evaluation of Anastatica hierochuntica aqueous extract. This is a significant research in view of the popularity of this herb consumption by the people across the globe despite of limited scientific evidence on its toxicity potential. This study is intended to encourage more extensive related research in order to provide sufficient evidence and guidance for determining its safe dosage.
  6. Loh SY, Giribabu N, Salleh N
    Exp. Biol. Med. (Maywood), 2017 07;242(13):1376-1386.
    PMID: 28399644 DOI: 10.1177/1535370217703360
    We tested the hypothesis that testosterone-induced increase in blood pressure was due to changes in aquaporin (AQP) expression in kidneys. In this study, expression level of kidney AQPs was investigated under testosterone influence. Adult normotensive Wistar Kyoto (WKY) and hypertensive SHR male and female rats underwent gonadectomy. For female rats, testosterone was given for six weeks duration, two weeks following ovariectomy via subcutaneous silastic implant. Mean arterial pressure (MAP) was measured in all the rats after eight weeks via carotid artery cannulation and the rats were then sacrificed and kidneys were harvested for analyses of AQP-1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 7 mRNA and protein expressions by quantitative real-time PCR and Western blotting, respectively. Distribution of AQP subunits' protein in kidneys was observed by immunofluorescence. In male WKY rats, MAP, AQP-1, 2, 4, and 7 protein; and mRNA expression decreased however AQP-3 protein and mRNA expression increased following orchidectomy. The vice versa effects were observed in testosterone-treated ovariectomized female WKY rats. However, no changes in AQP-6 expression were observed. Meanwhile, in adult male SHR rats, MAP and expression level of all AQP subunits decreased following orchidectomy. The opposite effects were seen in ovariectomized female SHR rats following testosterone treatment. Immunofluorescence study showed AQP-1 and AQP-7 were distributed in the proximal convoluted tubules (PCT) while AQP-2, AQP-4, and AQP-6 were distributed in the collecting ducts (CDs). AQP-3 was distributed in the PCT and CD. In conclusion, changes in AQP subunit expression in kidneys could explain changes in blood pressure under testosterone influence. Impact statement This study provides fundamental understanding on the mechanisms underlying testosterone-induced increase in blood pressure which involve regulation of aquaporin channel subunits in the kidneys. A better understanding of this issue can help to explain the reason for higher blood pressure in males as compared to females and may explain the reason for higher blood pressure in females after menopause than females before menopause, the former most probably related to the changes in female androgen.
  7. Isyraqiah F, K Kutty M, Durairajanayagam D, Salim N, Singh H
    PMID: 30449153 DOI: 10.1177/1535370218813909
    IMPACT STATEMENT: Gastric cancer is the third most common cause of death due to cancer in the world. Obese individuals are at risk of developing gastric cancer, and the reason for this is unknown. Serum leptin levels are high in obese individuals and leptin is known to induce proliferation of gastric cancer cells in vitro. However, to date, no reports exist on the tumorigenic effects of leptin on the stomach in vivo. This study therefore determines if chronic leptin administration induces gastric carcinogenesis in non-obese rats, which might serve as a useful animal model for future studies. Although the findings are somewhat inconclusive, to our knowledge, however, this is the first study to show the up-regulation of numerous potential driver genes that highlight the potential role of leptin in the higher prevalence of gastric cancer among obese individuals. The findings certainly necessitate further scrutiny of leptin gastric cancer.
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