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#32184427   2020/03/17 To Up

Effects of genotypes and explants on garlic callus production and endogenous hormones.

High callus production is a feasible way to improve the propagation coefficient of garlic. It remains unknown how genotypes and explants affect garlic callus formation. In the present investigation, we found that there were significant differences in callus formation among garlic varieties. Tip explants were the best calli-producing source, and 91.05% of the explants from four varieties, on average, formed calli after 45 d of primary culturing. Upper leaf parts explants produced lower values. Among the different varieties and explant types, tip explants of variety T141 induced calli in the shortest time and had the greatest callus fresh weight at 45 d. An endogenous hormone contents analysis showed that auxins (indole-3-acetic acid and methyl indole-3-acetic acetate), cytokinins (trans-zeatin and dihydrozeatin), gibberellins, abscisic acid, jasmonic acid, jasmonoyl-L-isoleucine, and dihydrojasmonic acid were significantly greater in the tips than those in the upper leaf parts. High endogenous jasmonic acid content might play important roles in callus formation. These results will help us not only establish an efficient garlic callus induction protocol that can be applied to large-scale callus multiplication and regeneration, and to genetically improvement of garlic production, but also understand endogenous hormone roles in tissue/organ differentiation and dedifferentiation.
Hassan H A Mostafa, Haiping Wang, Jiangping Song, Xixiang Li

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#32117944   2020/02/14 To Up

Discovery and Biochemical Characterization of a Methanol Dehydrogenase From .

Bioconversion of C1 chemicals such as methane and methanol into higher carbon-chain chemicals has been widely studied. Methanol oxidation catalyzed by methanol dehydrogenase (Mdh) is one of the key steps in methanol utilization in bacterial methylotrophy. In bacteria, few NAD-dependent Mdhs have been reported that convert methanol to formaldehyde. In this study, an uncharacterized Mdh gene from (Lxmdh) was cloned and expressed in . The maximum alcohol oxidation activity of the recombinant enzyme was observed at pH 9.5 and 55°C in the presence of 10 mM Mg. To improve oxidation activity, rational approach-based, site-directed mutagenesis of 16 residues in the putative active site and NAD-binding region was performed. The mutations S101V, T141S, and A164F improved the enzyme's specific activity toward methanol compared to that of the wild-type enzyme. These mutants show a slightly higher turnover rate than that of wild-type, although their values were increased compared to that of wild-type. Consequently, according the kinetic results, S101, T141, and A164 positions may related to the catalytic activity in the active site for methanol dehydrogenation. It should be further studied other mutant variants with high activity for methanol. In conclusion, we characterized a new Lxmdh and its variants that may be potentially useful for the development of synthetic methylotrophy in the future.
Jin-Young Lee, Sung-Hyun Park, So-Hyung Oh, Jin-Ju Lee, Kil Koang Kwon, Su-Jin Kim, Minjeong Choi, Eugene Rha, Hyewon Lee, Dae-Hee Lee, Bong Hyun Sung, Soo-Jin Yeom, Seung-Goo Lee

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#31914854   2020/01/09 To Up

The TLK1/Nek1 axis contributes to mitochondrial integrity and apoptosis prevention via phosphorylation of VDAC1.

The TLK1/Nek1 axis contributes to cell cycle arrest and implementation of the DDR to mediate survival upon DNA damage. However, when the damage is too severe, the cells typically are forced into apoptosis, and the contribution of TLKs in this process has not been investigated. In contrast, it is known that Nek1 may play a role by phosphorylating VDAC1 maintaining proper opening and closure of the channel and thus mitochondrial integrity. We now show that the activating phosphorylation of Nek1-T141 by TLK1 contributes to the phosphorylation and stability of VDAC1 and thereby to mitochondrial permeability and integrity. Treatment of three different cell lines model that overexpress Nek1-T141A mutant with doxorubicin showed exquisite sensitivity to the drug, with implementation of rapid accumulation of cells with subG1 DNA content (apoptotic) and other alterations in the cell cycle. In addition, these cells displayed reduced oxygen consumption under normal conditions and less reliance on mitochondria and more dependence on glycolysis for energy production. Consistent with greater apoptosis, upon treatment with low doses of doxorubicin, cells overexpressing Nek1-T141A displayed leakage of Cyt-C into the cytoplasmic fraction. This suggests that inhibiting the TLK1/Nek1/VDAC1 nexus could sensitize cancer cells to apoptotic killing in combination with an appropriate DNA damaging agent. We in fact have previously reported that Nek1 expression is elevated in advanced Prostate Cancer (PCa) and we now report that VDAC1 expression is elevated and correlated with disease stage, thereby making the TLK1/Nek1/VDAC1 nexus a very attractive target for PCa.
Vibha Singh, Md Imtiaz Khalil, Arrigo De Benedetti

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#30928383   2019/03/27 To Up

The TLK1-Nek1 axis promotes prostate cancer progression.

We recently uncovered the critical TLK1>NEK1>ATR > Chk1 axis in mediating the DDR and cell cycle checkpoint while transiting from Androgen Sensitive to Insensitive growth for LNCaP and TRAMP-C2 cells. However, we did not know the generality of this pathway in PCa progression since there are few cell lines where the transition has been studied. Furthermore, the identification of Nek1, and more importantly the TLK-mediated phosphorylation of T141, has never been studied in PCa biopsies. We now report the first study of a PCa TMA of p-Nek1-T141 and correlation to the Gleason score. In addition we found that TRAMP mice treated with the TLK inhibitor, thioridazine (THD), following castration did not recover cancerous growth of their prostates. Moreover, we recapitulated the process of translational increase in TLK1B expression in a naïve PDX model that was established from an AR + adenocarcinoma. Therefore, we believe that this TLK1-Nek1 mediated DDR axis is likely to be a common adaptive response during the transition of PCa cells toward androgen-insensitive growth, and hence CRPC progression, which has the potential to be targeted with THD and other TLK or Nek1 inhibitors.
Vibha Singh, Praveen Kumar Jaiswal, Ishita Ghosh, Hari K Koul, Xiuping Yu, Arrigo De Benedetti

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#30359395   2018/10/25 To Up

The zebrafish orthologue of familial Alzheimer's disease gene PRESENILIN 2 is required for normal adult melanotic skin pigmentation.

Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of age-related dementia. At least 15 mutations in the human gene PRESENILIN 2 (PSEN2) have been found to cause familial Alzheimer's disease (fAD). Zebrafish possess an orthologous gene, psen2, and present opportunities for investigation of PRESENILIN function related to Alzheimer's disease. The most prevalent and best characterized fAD mutation in PSEN2 is N141I. The equivalent codon in zebrafish psen2 is N140. We used genome editing technology in zebrafish to target generation of mutations to the N140 codon. We isolated two mutations: psen2N140fs, (hereafter "N140fs"), causing truncation of the coding sequence, and psen2T141_L142delinsMISLISV, (hereafter "T141_L142delinsMISLISV"), that deletes the two codons immediately downstream of N140 and replaces them with seven codons coding for amino acid residues MISLISV. Thus, like almost every fAD mutation in the PRESENILIN genes, this latter mutation does not truncate the gene's open reading frame. Both mutations are homozygous viable although N140fs transcripts are subject to nonsense-mediated decay and lack any possibility of coding for an active γ-secretase enzyme. N140fs homozygous larvae initially show grossly normal melanotic skin pigmentation but subsequently lose this as they grow while retaining pigmentation in the retinal pigmented epithelium. T141_L142delinsMISLISV homozygotes retain faint skin melanotic pigmentation as adults, most likely indicating that the protein encoded by this allele retains weak γ-secretase activity. Null mutations in the human PRESENILIN genes do not cause Alzheimer's disease so these two mutations may be useful for future investigation of the differential effects of null and fAD-like PRESENILIN mutations on brain aging.
Haowei Jiang, Morgan Newman, Michael Lardelli

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#30058025   2018/07/30 To Up

Strengthening a Culture of Prevention in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: Balancing Scientific Expectations and Contextual Realities.

Relevant initiatives are being implemented in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) aimed at strengthening a culture of prevention. However, cumulative contextual factors constitute significant barriers for implementing rigorous prevention science in these contexts, as defined by guidelines from high-income countries (HICs). Specifically, disseminating a culture of prevention in LMICs can be impacted by political instability, limited health coverage, insecurity, limited rule of law, and scarcity of specialized professionals. This manuscript offers a contribution focused on strengthening a culture of prevention in LMICs. Specifically, four case studies are presented illustrating the gradual development of contrasting prevention initiatives in northern and central Mexico, Panamá, and Sub-Saharan Africa. The initiatives share the common goal of strengthening a culture of prevention in LMICs through the dissemination of efficacious parenting programs, aimed at reducing child maltreatment and improving parental and child mental health. Together, these initiatives illustrate the following: (a) the relevance of adopting a definition of culture of prevention characterized by national commitments with expected shared contributions by governments and civil society, (b) the need to carefully consider the impact of context when promoting prevention initiatives in LMICs, (c) the iterative, non-linear, and multi-faceted nature of promoting a culture of prevention in LMICs, and (d) the importance of committing to cultural competence and shared leadership with local communities for the advancement of prevention science in LMICs. Implications for expanding a culture of prevention in LMICs are discussed.
Rubén Parra-Cardona, Patty Leijten, Jamie M Lachman, Anilena Mejía, Ana A Baumann, Nancy G Amador Buenabad, Lucie Cluver, Jenny Doubt, Frances Gardner, Judy Hutchings, Catherine L Ward, Inge M Wessels, Rachel Calam, Victoria Chavira, Melanie M Domenech Rodríguez

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#29980644   // To Up

65 YEARS OF THE DOUBLE HELIX: The advancements of gene editing and potential application to hereditary cancer.

Hereditary cancer predisposition syndromes are associated with germline mutations that lead to increased vulnerability for an individual to develop cancers. Such germline mutations in tumour suppressor genes, oncogenes and genes encoding for proteins essential in DNA repair pathways and cell cycle control can cause overall chromosomal instability in the genome and increase risk in developing cancers. Gene correction of these germline mutations to restore normal protein functions is anticipated as a new therapeutic option. This can be achieved through disruption of gain-of-function pathogenic mutation, restoration of loss-of-function mutation, addition of a transgene essential for cell function and single nucleotide changes. Genome editing tools are applicable to precise gene correction. Development of genome editing tools comes in two waves. The first wave focuses on improving targeting specificity and editing efficiency of nucleases, and the second wave of gene editing draws on innovative engineering of fusion proteins combining deactivated nucleases and other enzymes that are able to create limitless functional molecular tools. This gene editing advancement is going to impact medicine, particularly in hereditary cancers. In this review, we discuss the application of gene editing as an early intervention and possible treatment for hereditary cancers, by highlighting a selection of highly penetrant cancer syndromes as examples of how this may be achieved in clinical practice.
Zi Ying Tan, Taosheng Huang, Joanne Ngeow

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#28426283   2017/04/20 To Up

Identification of the proteome complement of humanTLK1 reveals it binds and phosphorylates NEK1 regulating its activity.

The Tousled Like kinases (TLKs) are involved in numerous cellular functions, including the DNA Damage Response (DDR), but only a handful of substrates have been identified thus far. Through a novel proteomic screen, we have now identified 165 human proteins interacting with TLK1, and we have focused this work on NEK1 because of its known role in the DDR, upstream of ATR and Chk1. TLK1 and NEK1 were found to interact by coIP, and their binding is strengthened following exposure of cells to H2O2. Following incubation with doxorubicin, TLK1 and NEK1 relocalize with nuclear repair foci along with γH2AX. TLK1 phosphorylated NEK1 at T141, which lies in the kinase domain, and caused an increase in its activity. Following DNA damage, addition of the TLK1 inhibitor, THD, or overexpression of NEK1-T141A mutant impaired ATR and Chk1 activation, indicating the existence of a TLK1>NEK1>ATR>Chk1 pathway. Indeed, overexpression of the NEK1-T141A mutant resulted in an altered cell cycle response after exposure of cells to oxidative stress, including bypass of G1 arrest and implementation of an intra S-phase checkpoint.
Vibha Singh, Zachary M Connelly, Xinggui Shen, Arrigo De Benedetti

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#27824095   2016/11/08 To Up

Recombinant L-asparaginase 1 from Saccharomyces cerevisiae: an allosteric enzyme with antineoplastic activity.

L-asparaginase (L-ASNase) (EC 3.5.1.1) is an important enzyme for the treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukaemia. Currently, the enzyme is obtained from bacteria, Escherichia coli and Erwinia chrysanthemi. The bacterial enzymes family is subdivided in type I and type II; nevertheless, only type II have been employed in therapeutic proceedings. However, bacterial enzymes are susceptible to induce immune responses, leading to a high incidence of adverse effects compromising the effectiveness of the treatment. Therefore, alternative sources of L-ASNase may be useful to reduce toxicity and enhance efficacy. The yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae has the ASP1 gene responsible for encoding L-asparaginase 1 (ScASNase1), an enzyme predicted as type II, like bacterial therapeutic isoforms, but it has been poorly studied. Here we characterised ScASNase1 using a recombinant enzyme purified by affinity chromatography. ScASNase1 has specific activity of 196.2 U/mg and allosteric behaviour, like type I enzymes, but with a low K = 75 μM like therapeutic type II. We showed through site-directed mutagenesis that the T64-Y78-T141-K215 residues are involved in catalysis. Furthermore, ScASNase1 showed cytotoxicity for the MOLT-4 leukemic cell lineage. Our data show that ScASNase1 has characteristics described for the two subfamilies of l-asparaginase, types I and II, and may have promising antineoplastic properties.
Iris Munhoz Costa, Leonardo Schultz, Beatriz de Araujo Bianchi Pedra, Mariana Silva Moreira Leite, Sandra H P Farsky, Marcos Antonio de Oliveira, Adalberto Pessoa, Gisele Monteiro

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#26136383   2015/07/01 To Up

60 YEARS OF NEUROENDOCRINOLOGY: Acromegaly.

Acromegaly (ACM) is a chronic, progressive disorder caused by the persistent hypersecretion of GH, in the vast majority of cases secreted by a pituitary adenoma. The consequent increase in IGF1 (a GH-induced liver protein) is responsible for most clinical features and for the systemic complications associated with increased mortality. The clinical diagnosis, based on symptoms related to GH excess or the presence of a pituitary mass, is often delayed many years because of the slow progression of the disease. Initial testing relies on measuring the serum IGF1 concentration. The oral glucose tolerance test with concomitant GH measurement is the gold-standard diagnostic test. The therapeutic options for ACM are surgery, medical treatment, and radiotherapy (RT). The outcome of surgery is very good for microadenomas (80-90% cure rate), but at least half of the macroadenomas (most frequently encountered in ACM patients) are not cured surgically. Somatostatin analogs are mainly indicated after surgical failure. Currently their routine use as primary therapy is not recommended. Dopamine agonists are useful in a minority of cases. Pegvisomant is indicated for patients refractory to surgery and other medical treatments. RT is employed sparingly, in cases of persistent disease activity despite other treatments, due to its long-term side effects. With complex, combined treatment, at least three-quarters of the cases are controlled according to current criteria. With proper control of the disease, the specific complications are partially improved and the mortality rate is close to that of the background population.
Cristina Capatina, John A H Wass

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