Prefrontal cortex (PFC) mediated cognitive and emotional processing deficits in bipolar disorder lead to functional limitations even during periods of mood stability. Alterations of sleep and circadian functioning are well-documented in bipolar disorder, but there is little research directly examining the mechanistic role of sleep and/or circadian rhythms in the observed cognitive and emotional processing deficits. We systematically review the cognitive and emotional processing deficits reliant upon PFC functioning of euthymic patients with bipolar disorder and in healthy individuals deprived of sleep. The evidence from two parallel lines of investigation suggests that sleep and circadian rhythms may be involved in the cognitive and emotional processing deficits seen in bipolar disorder through overlapping neurobiological systems. We discuss current models of bipolar highlighting the PFC-limbic connections and discuss inclusion of sleep-related mechanisms. Sleep and circadian dysfunction is a core feature of bipolar disorder and models of neurobiological abnormalities should incorporate chronobiological measures. Further research into the role of sleep and circadian rhythms in cognition and emotional processing in bipolar disorder is warranted.
Hippocampal deficits are an established feature of schizophrenia and are complementary with recent evidences of marked allocentric processing deficits being reported in this disorder. By “Cognitive mapping” we intend to refer to the concepts from the seminal works of O’Keefe and Nadel (1978) that led to the development of cognitive map theory of hippocampal function. In this review, we summarize emerging evidences and issues that indicate that “Cognitive mapping deficits” form one of the important cognitive aberrations in schizophrenia. The importance has been placed upon hippocampally mediated allocentric processing deficits and their role in pathology of schizophrenia, for spatial/representational cognitive deficits and positive symptoms in particular. It is modestly summarized that emerging evidences point toward a web of spatial and cognitive representation errors concurrent with pronounced hippocampal dysfunction. In general, it can be stated that there are clear and consistent evidences that favor the cognitive mapping theory in explaining certain deficits of schizophrenia and for drawing out a possible and promising endophenotype/biomarkers. Further research in this regard demands attention.
With the rapid advance in genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, and other types of omics technologies during the past decades, a tremendous amount of data related to molecular biology has been produced. It is becoming a big challenge for the bioinformatists to analyze and interpret these data with conventional intelligent techniques, for example, support vector machines. Recently, the hybrid intelligent methods, which integrate several standard intelligent approaches, are becoming more and more popular due to their robustness and efficiency. Specifically, the hybrid intelligent approaches based on evolutionary algorithms (EAs) are widely used in various fields due to the efficiency and robustness of EAs. In this review, we give an introduction about the applications of hybrid intelligent methods, in particular those based on evolutionary algorithm, in bioinformatics. In particular, we focus on their applications to three common problems that arise in bioinformatics, that is, feature selection, parameter estimation, and reconstruction of biological networks.
Hypofractionated radiotherapy (HFRT) is an effective and increasingly-used treatment for early stage non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Stereotactic ablative radiotherapy (SABR) is a form of HFRT and delivers biologically effective doses (BEDs) in excess of 100 Gy10 in 3-8 fractions. Excellent long-term outcomes have been reported; however, response assessment following SABR is complicated as radiation induced lung injury can appear similar to a recurring tumor on CT. Current approaches to scoring treatment responses include Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors (RECIST) and positron emission tomography (PET), both of which appear to have a limited role in detecting recurrences following SABR. Novel approaches to assess response are required, but new techniques should be easily standardized across centers, cost effective, with sensitivity and specificity that improves on current CT and PET approaches. This review examines potential novel approaches, focusing on the emerging field of quantitative image feature analysis, to distinguish recurrence from fibrosis after SABR.
Yarrowia lipolytica is a nonpathogenic dimorphic aerobic yeast that stands out due to its ability to grow in hydrophobic environments. This property allowed this yeast to develop an ability to metabolize triglycerides and fatty acids as carbon sources. This feature enables using this species in the bioremediation of environments contaminated with oil spill. In addition, Y. lipolytica has been calling the interest of researchers due to its huge biotechnological potential, associated with the production of several types of metabolites, such as bio-surfactants, γ-decalactone, citric acid, and intracellular lipids and lipase. The production of a metabolite rather than another is influenced by the growing conditions to which Y. lipolytica is subjected. The choice of carbon and nitrogen sources to be used, as well as their concentrations in the growth medium, and the careful determination of fermentation parameters, pH, temperature, and agitation (oxygenation), are essential for efficient metabolites production. This review discusses the biotechnological potential of Y. lipolytica and the best growing conditions for production of some metabolites of biotechnological interest.
One of the major developments that resulted from the human genome sequencing projects was a better understanding of the role of non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs). NcRNAs are divided into several different categories according to size and function; however, one shared feature is that they are not translated into proteins. In this review, we will discuss relevant aspects of ncRNAs, focusing on two main types: i) microRNAs, which negatively regulate gene expression either by translational repression or target mRNA degradation, and ii) small interfering RNAs (siRNAs), which are involved in the biological process of RNA interference (RNAi). Our knowledge regarding these two types of ncRNAs has increased dramatically over the past decade, and they have a great potential to become therapeutic alternatives for a variety of human conditions.
The primary aim in the treatment of autoimmune inflammatory myopathies (IMs) is to recover muscle function. The presence of immune/inflammatory cell infiltrates within muscle tissues represents the common feature of different IM subtypes, albeit a correlation between muscular damage extent and inflammation degree is often lacking. Treatments for IMs are based on life-long immunosuppressive therapy, with the well known adverse effects; recovery is incomplete for many patients. More effective therapies, with reduced side-effects, are highly desirable. Vitamin D receptor (VDR) agonists emerge to retain pleiotropic anti-inflammatory properties, since they regulate innate and adaptive immunity by switching the immune response from proinflammatory T helper 1 (Th1) type to tolerogenic T helper 2 (Th2) type dominance. In skeletal muscle cells less hypercalcemic VDR ligands target powerful mediators of inflammation, such as TNFα and TNFα driven paths, without affecting immune or muscle cells viability, retaining the potentiality to counteract Th1 driven overreactivity established by the self-enhancing inflammatory loop between immune and skeletal muscle cells. This review summarizes those features of VDR agonists as candidates in future treatment of IM.
Tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) is a proinflammatory cytokine that exerts both homeostatic and pathophysiological roles in the central nervous system. In pathological conditions, microglia release large amounts of TNF-α; this de novo production of TNF-α is an important component of the so-called neuroinflammatory response that is associated with several neurological disorders. In addition, TNF-α can potentiate glutamate-mediated cytotoxicity by two complementary mechanisms: indirectly, by inhibiting glutamate transport on astrocytes, and directly, by rapidly triggering the surface expression of Ca+2 permeable-AMPA receptors and NMDA receptors, while decreasing inhibitory GABAA receptors on neurons. Thus, the net effect of TNF-α is to alter the balance of excitation and inhibition resulting in a higher synaptic excitatory/inhibitory ratio. This review summarizes the current knowledge of the cellular and molecular mechanisms by which TNF-α links the neuroinflammatory and excitotoxic processes that occur in several neurodegenerative diseases, but with a special emphasis on amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). As microglial activation and upregulation of TNF-α expression is a common feature of several CNS diseases, as well as chronic opioid exposure and neuropathic pain...
Tumour hypoxia is increasingly recognized as a major deleterious factor in cancer therapies, as it compromises treatment and drives malignant progression. This review seeks to clarify the oxygen levels that are pertinent to this issue. It is argued that normoxia (20% oxygen) is an extremely poor comparator for “physoxia”, i.e. the much lower levels of oxygen universally found in normal tissues, which averages about 5% oxygen, and ranges from about 3% to 7.4%. Importantly, it should be recognized that the median oxygenation in untreated tumours is significantly much lower, falling between approximately 0.3% and 4.2% oxygen, with most tumours exhibiting median oxygen levels <2%. This is partially dependent on the tissue of origin, and it is notable that many prostate and pancreatic tumours are profoundly hypoxic. In addition, therapy can induce even further, often unrecognized, changes in tumour oxygenation that may vary longitudinally, increasing or decreasing during treatment in ways that are not always predictable. Studies that fail to take cognizance of the actual physiological levels of oxygen in tissues (approximately 5%) and tumours (approximately 1%) may fail to identify the real circumstances driving tumour response to treatment and/or malignant progression. This can be of particular importance in genetic studies in vitro when comparison to human tumours is required.
Abnormal chromosome number, or aneuploidy, is a common feature of human solid tumors, including oral cancer. Deregulated spindle assembly checkpoint (SAC) is thought as one of the mechanisms that drive aneuploidy. In normal cells, SAC prevents anaphase onset until all chromosomes are correctly aligned at the metaphase plate thereby ensuring genomic stability. Significantly, the activity of this checkpoint is compromised in many cancers. While mutations are rather rare, many tumors show altered expression levels of SAC components. Genomic alterations such as aneuploidy indicate a high risk of oral cancer and cancer-related mortality, and the molecular basis of these alterations is largely unknown. Yet, our knowledge on the status of SAC components in oral cancer remains sparse. In this review, we address the state of our knowledge regarding the SAC defects and the underlying molecular mechanisms in oral cancer, and discuss their therapeutic relevance, focusing our analysis on the core components of SAC and its target Cdc20.
Elastofibromatous change, also referred to as elastofibromatous polyp or elastofibroma, has been extremely rarely described in the gastrointestinal tract. This lesion is characterized histopathologically by an excessive accumulation of elastic fibers occasionally with a fibrous component involving the submucosa and/or muscularis mucosae of the gastrointestinal tract. Herein, we report four additional lesions of the intestine and review the clinicopathological features of this rare lesion. Three patients (76-, 72-, and 52-year-old males) were detected with polypoid lesions in the jejunum, transverse and sigmoid colons, and sigmoid colon, respectively. All four lesions showed fundamentally the same histopathological and immunohistochemical features. The polypoid lesions were covered by non-neoplastic epithelium, and degenerated and truncated elastic fibers occasionally with a fibrous component had accumulated in the submucosa and/or muscularis mucosae. The characteristic feature was the elastofibromatous change centered around collections of elastotic submucosal vessels. Desmin-positive degenerative ruptured smooth muscle fibers were scattered within the elastic fibers in the submucosa. Our analyses of the clinicopathological features of the previously reported 32 cases of elastofibromatous change of the gastrointestinal tract as well as the present cases demonstrated that this type of lesion is most commonly found in the colon or rectum (29 cases)...
Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) are multipotent cells, which can give rise to several cell types including osteoblasts, adipocytes, and chondroblasts. These cells can be found in a variety of adult and fetal tissues, such as bone marrow, adipose tissue, cord blood, and placenta. In recent years, the biological properties of MSCs have attracted the attention of researchers worldwide due to their potential application for treating a series of clinical situations. Among these properties, special attention should be given to the immunoregulatory potential of those cells. MSCs are able to act on all cells of the immune system, which includes the capacity to inhibit the proliferation and function of T-cells. This feature renders them natural candidates to treat several diseases in which cellular immune response is exacerbated. In this review, we outline the main mechanisms by which MSCs immunosuppress T-cell response, focusing on cell-cell contact, secretion of soluble factors, and regulatory T-cell generation. The influence of surface markers in the immunosuppression process and features of MSCs isolated from different sources are also discussed. Finally, the influences of toll-like receptors and cytokines on the inflammatory microenvironment are highlighted regarding the activation of MSCs to exert their immunoregulatory function.
The early detection and classification of dementia are important clinical support tasks for medical practitioners in customizing patient treatment programs to better manage the development and progression of these diseases. Efforts are being made to diagnose these neurodegenerative disorders in the early stages. Indeed, early diagnosis helps patients to obtain the maximum treatment benefit before significant mental decline occurs. The use of electroencephalogram as a tool for the detection of changes in brain activities and clinical diagnosis is becoming increasingly popular for its capabilities in quantifying changes in brain degeneration in dementia. This paper reviews the role of electroencephalogram as a biomarker based on signal processing to detect dementia in early stages and classify its severity. The review starts with a discussion of dementia types and cognitive spectrum followed by the presentation of the effective preprocessing denoising to eliminate possible artifacts. It continues with a description of feature extraction by using linear and nonlinear techniques, and it ends with a brief explanation of vast variety of separation techniques to classify EEG signals. This paper also provides an idea from the most popular studies that may help in diagnosing dementia in early stages and classifying through electroencephalogram signal processing and analysis.
Hypoxia is a common feature of many solid tumors, including hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Hypoxia can promote tumor progression and induce radiation and chemotherapy resistance. As one of the major mediators of hypoxic response, hypoxia inducible factor-1 (HIF-1) has been shown to activate hypoxia-responsive genes, which are involved in multiple aspects of tumorigenesis and cancer progression, including proliferation, metabolism, angiogenesis, invasion, metastasis and therapy resistance. It has been demonstrated that a high level of HIF-1 in the HCC microenvironment leads to enhanced proliferation and survival of HCC cells. Accordingly, overexpression, of HIF-1 is associated with poor prognosis in HCC. In this review, we described the mechanism by which HIF-1 is regulated and how HIF-1 mediates the biological effects of hypoxia in tissues. We also summarized the latest findings concerning the role of HIF-1 in the development of HCC, which could shed light on new therapeutic approaches for the treatment of HCC.
Background. Over the recent years, radiopharmaceutical chemistry has experienced a wide variety of innovative pushes towards finding both novel and unconventional radiochemical methods to introduce fluorine-18 into radiotracers for positron emission tomography (PET). These “nonclassical” labeling methodologies based on silicon-, boron-, and aluminium-18F chemistry deviate from commonplace bonding of an [18F]fluorine atom (18F) to either an aliphatic or aromatic carbon atom. One method in particular, the silicon-fluoride-acceptor isotopic exchange (SiFA-IE) approach, invalidates a dogma in radiochemistry that has been widely accepted for many years: the inability to obtain radiopharmaceuticals of high specific activity (SA) via simple IE. Methodology. The most advantageous feature of IE labeling in general is that labeling precursor and labeled radiotracer are chemically identical, eliminating the need to separate the radiotracer from its precursor. SiFA-IE chemistry proceeds in dipolar aprotic solvents at room temperature and below, entirely avoiding the formation of radioactive side products during the IE. Scope of Review. A great plethora of different SiFA species have been reported in the literature ranging from small prosthetic groups and other compounds of low molecular weight to labeled peptides and most recently affibody molecules. Conclusions. The literature over the last years (from 2006 to 2014) shows unambiguously that SiFA-IE and other silicon-based fluoride acceptor strategies relying on 18F− leaving group substitutions have the potential to become a valuable addition to radiochemistry.
Mitochondria are principal regulators of cellular function and metabolism through production of ATP for energy homeostasis, maintenance of calcium homeostasis, regulation of apoptosis and fatty acid oxidation to provide acetyl CoA for fueling the electron transport chain. In addition, mitochondria play a key role in cell signaling through production of reactive oxygen species that modulate redox signaling. Recent findings support an additional mechanism for control of cellular and tissue function by mitochondria through complex mitochondrial–nuclear communication mechanisms and potentially through extracellular release of mitochondrial components that can act as signaling molecules. The activation of stress responses including mitophagy, mitochondrial number, fission and fusion events, and the mitochondrial unfolded protein response (UPRMT) requires mitochondrial–nuclear communication for the transcriptional activation of nuclear genes involved in mitochondrial quality control and metabolism. The induction of these signaling pathways is a shared feature in long-lived organisms spanning from yeast to mice. As a result, the role of mitochondrial stress signaling in longevity has been expansively studied. Current and exciting studies provide evidence that mitochondria can also signal among tissues to up-regulate cytoprotective activities to promote healthy aging. Alternatively...
Asthma is a prevalent chronic disease of the respiratory system and acute asthma exacerbations are among the most common causes of presentation to the emergency department (ED) and admission to hospital particularly in children. Bronchial airways inflammation is the most prominent pathological feature of asthma. Inhaled corticosteroids (ICS), through their anti-inflammatory effects have been the mainstay of treatment of asthma for many years. Systemic and ICS are also used in the treatment of acute asthma exacerbations. Several international asthma management guidelines recommend the use of systemic corticosteroids in the management of moderate to severe acute asthma early upon presentation to the ED. On the other hand, ICS use in the management acute asthma has been studied in different contexts with encouraging results in some and negative in others. This review sheds some light on the role of systemic and ICS in the management of acute asthma and discusses the current evidence behind their different ways of application particularly in relation to new developments in the field.
Akt is one of the central kinases that perform a pivotal function in mediating survival signaling in a wide range of neuronal cell types in response to growth factor stimulation. The recent findings of a number of targets for Akt suggest that it prohibits neuronal death by both impinging on the cytoplasmic cell death machinery and by regulating nuclear proteins. The presence of active Akt in the nuclei of mammalian cells is no longer debatable, and this has been corroborated by the finding of multiple targets in the nucleus of PC12 cells. However, it is also clear that the nuclear Akt signaling exists independent of the cytosolic Akt signaling, thereby showing a distinctive feature of nuclear Akt signaling as opposed to its cytosolic counterpart. The principal objective of this review is to summarize our current state of knowledge regarding nuclear Akt signaling in neuronal survival, and to introduce current theories regarding the roles of nuclear Akt in neuron.
The humidity sensing characteristics of different sensing materials are important properties in order to monitor different products or events in a wide range of industrial sectors, research and development laboratories as well as daily life. The primary aim of this study is to compare the sensing characteristics, including impedance or resistance, capacitance, hysteresis, recovery and response times, and stability with respect to relative humidity, frequency, and temperature, of different materials. Various materials, including ceramics, semiconductors, and polymers, used for sensing relative humidity have been reviewed. Correlations of the different electrical characteristics of different doped sensor materials as the most unique feature of a material have been noted. The electrical properties of different sensor materials are found to change significantly with the morphological changes, doping concentration of different materials and film thickness of the substrate. Various applications and scopes are pointed out in the review article. We extensively reviewed almost all main kinds of relative humidity sensors and how their electrical characteristics vary with different doping concentrations, film thickness and basic sensing materials. Based on statistical tests...
In cancer chemotherapy, one axiom, which has practically solidified into dogma, is that acquired resistance to antitumor agents or regimens, nearly inevitable in all patients with metastatic disease, remains unalterable and irreversible, rendering therapeutic rechallenge futile. However, the introduction of epigenetic therapies, including histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACis) and DNA methyltransferase inhibitors (DNMTIs), provides oncologists, like computer programmers, with new techniques to “overwrite” the modifiable software pattern of gene expression in tumors and challenge the “one and done” treatment prescription. Taking the epigenetic code-as-software analogy a step further, if chemoresistance is the product of multiple nongenetic alterations, which develop and accumulate over time in response to treatment, then the possibility to hack or tweak the operating system and fall back on a “system restore” or “undo” feature, like the arrow icon in the Windows XP toolbar, reconfiguring the tumor to its baseline nonresistant state, holds tremendous promise for turning advanced, metastatic cancer from a fatal disease into a chronic, livable condition. This review aims 1) to explore the potential mechanisms by which a group of small molecule agents including HDACis (entinostat and vorinostat)...