Physiology - Research Publications
Now showing items 1-12 of 361
Androgen Receptor Copy Number Variation and Androgenetic Alopecia: A Case-Control Study
(PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE, 2009-04-02)
BACKGROUND: The functional polymorphism that explains the established association of the androgen receptor (AR) with androgenetic alopecia (AGA) remains unidentified, but Copy Number Variation (CNV) might be relevant. CNV involves changes in copy number of large segments of DNA, leading to the altered dosage of gene regulators or genes themselves. Two recent reports indicate regions of CNV in and around AR, and these have not been studied in relation to AGA. The aim of this preliminary case-control study was to determine if AR CNV is associated with AGA, with the hypothesis that CNV is the functional AR variant contributing to this condition. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Multiplex Ligation-dependent Probe Amplification was used to screen for CNV in five AR exons and a conserved, non-coding region upstream of AR in 85 men carefully selected as cases and controls for maximal phenotypic contrast. There was no evidence of CNV in AR in any of the cases or controls, and thus no evidence of significant association between AGA and AR CNV. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The results suggest this form of genomic variation at the AR locus is unlikely to predispose to AGA.
Obesity does not promote tumorigenesis of localized patient-derived prostate cancer xenografts
(IMPACT JOURNALS LLC, 2016-07-26)
There are established epidemiological links between obesity and the severity of prostate cancer. We directly tested this relationship by assessing tumorigenicity of patient-derived xenografts (PDXs) of moderate-grade localized prostate cancer in lean and obese severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) mice. Mice were rendered obese and insulin resistant by high-fat feeding for 6 weeks prior to transplantation, and PDXs were assessed 10 weeks thereafter. Histological analysis of PDX grafts showed no differences in tumor pathology, prostate-specific antigen, androgen receptor and homeobox protein Nkx-3.1 expression, or proliferation index in lean versus obese mice. Whilst systemic obesity per se did not promote prostate tumorigenicity, we next asked whether the peri-prostatic adipose tissue (PPAT), which covers the prostate anteriorly, plays a role in prostate tumorigenesis. In vitro studies in a cellularized co-culture model of stromal and epithelial cells demonstrated that factors secreted from human PPAT are pro-tumorigenic. Accordingly, we recapitulated the prostate-PPAT spatial relationship by co-grafting human PPAT with prostate cancer in PDX grafts. PDX tissues were harvested 10 weeks after grafting, and histological analysis revealed no evidence of enhanced tumorigenesis with PPAT compared to prostate cancer grafts alone. Altogether, these data demonstrate that prostate cancer tumorigenicity is not accelerated in the setting of diet-induced obesity or in the presence of human PPAT, prompting the need for further work to define the at-risk populations of obesity-driven tumorigenesis and the biological factors linking obesity, adipose tissue and prostate cancer pathogenesis.
Evidence from single nucleotide polymorphism analyses of ADVANCE study demonstrates EFNB3 as a hypertension risk gene
(NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP, 2017-03-08)
EPH kinases and their ligands, ephrins (EFNs), have vital and diverse biological functions. We recently reported that Efnb3 gene deletion results in hypertension in female but not male mice. These data suggest that EFNB3 regulates blood pressure in a sex- and sex hormone-dependent way. In the present study, we conducted a human genetic study to assess the association of EFNB3 single nucleotide polymorphisms with human hypertension risks, using 3,448 patients with type 2 diabetes from the ADVANCE study (Action in Diabetes and Vascular Disease: Peterax and Diamicron MR Controlled Evaluation). We have observed significant association between 2 SNPs in the 3' untranslated region or within the adjacent region just 3' of the EFNB3 gene with hypertension, corroborating our findings from the mouse model. Thus, our investigation has shown that EFNB3 is a hypertension risk gene in certain individuals.
Tumour-associated neutrophils and loss of epithelial PTEN can promote corticosteroid-insensitive MMP-9 expression in the chronically inflamed lung microenvironment
(BMJ PUBLISHING GROUP, 2017-12-01)
Matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) is increased in a number of pathological lung conditions, where the proteinase contributes to deleterious remodelling of the airways. While both lung cancer and COPD are associated with increased MMP-9 expression, the cellular and molecular drivers of MMP-9 remain unresolved. In this study, MMP-9 transcript measured within the tumour region from patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and coexisting COPD was found to be uniformly increased relative to adjacent tumour-free tissue. MMP-9 gene expression and immunohistochemistry identified tumour-associated neutrophils, but not macrophages, as a predominant source of this proteinase. In addition, PTEN gene expression was significantly reduced in tumour and there was evidence of epithelial MMP-9 expression. To explore whether PTEN can regulate epithelial MMP-9 expression, a small interfering (si)RNA knockdown strategy was used in Beas-2B bronchial epithelial cells. PTEN knockdown by siRNA selectively increased MMP-9 expression in response to lipopolysaccharide in a corticosteroid-insensitive manner. In summary, tumour-associated neutrophils represent an important source of MMP-9 in NSCLC, and loss of epithelial PTEN may further augment steroid-insensitive expression.
PROX1 gene CC genotype as a major determinant of early onset of type 2 diabetes in slavic study participants from Action in Diabetes and Vascular Disease: Preterax and Diamicron MR Controlled Evaluation study
(LIPPINCOTT WILLIAMS & WILKINS, 2017-05-01)
BACKGROUND: The prevalence of diabetic nephropathy varies according to ethnicity. Environmental as well as genetic factors contribute to the heterogeneity in the presentation of diabetic nephropathy. Our objective was to evaluate this heterogeneity within the Caucasian population. METHODS: The geo-ethnic origin of the 3409 genotyped Caucasian type 2 diabetes (T2D) patients of Action in Diabetes and Vascular Disease: Preterax and Diamicron MR Controlled Evaluation was determined using principal component analysis. Genome-wide association studies analyses of age of onset of T2D were performed for geo-ethnic groups separately and combined. RESULTS: The first principal component separated the Caucasian study participants into Slavic and Celtic ethnic origins. Age of onset of diabetes was significantly lower in Slavic patients (P = 7.3 × 10), whereas the prevalence of hypertension (P = 4.9 × 10) and albuminuria (5.1 × 10) were significantly higher. Age of onset of T2D and albuminuria appear to have an important genetic component as the values of these traits were also different between Slavic and Celtic individuals living in the same countries. Common and geo-ethnic-specific loci were found to be associated to age of onset of diabetes. Among the latter, the PROX1/PROX1-AS1 genes (rs340841) had the highest impact. Single-nucleotide polymorphism rs340841 CC genotype was associated with a 4.4 year earlier onset of T2D in Slavic patients living or not in countries with predominant Slavic populations. CONCLUSION: These results reveal the presence of distinct genetic architectures between Caucasian ethnic groups that likely have clinical relevance, among them PROX1 gene is a strong candidate of early onset of diabetes with variations depending on ethnicity.
Role of oxidative stress in oxaliplatin-induced enteric neuropathy and colonic dysmotility in mice
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Oxaliplatin is a platinum-based chemotherapeutic drug used as a first-line therapy for colorectal cancer. However, its use is associated with severe gastrointestinal side-effects resulting in dose limitations and/or cessation of treatment. In this study, we tested whether oxidative stress, caused by chronic oxaliplatin treatment, induces enteric neuronal damage and colonic dysmotility. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH: Oxaliplatin (3 mg·kg-1 per day) was administered in vivo to Balb/c mice intraperitoneally three times a week. The distal colon was collected at day 14 of treatment. Immunohistochemistry was performed in wholemount preparations of submucosal and myenteric ganglia. Neuromuscular transmission was studied by intracellular electrophysiology. Circular muscle tone was studied by force transducers. Colon propulsive activity studied in organ bath experiments and faeces were collected to measure water content. KEY RESULTS: Chronic in vivo oxaliplatin treatment resulted in increased formation of reactive oxygen species (O2 -), nitration of proteins, mitochondrial membrane depolarisation resulting in the release of cytochrome c, loss of neurons, increased inducible NOS expression and apoptosis in both the submucosal and myenteric plexuses of the colon. Oxaliplatin treatment enhanced NO-mediated inhibitory junction potentials and altered the response of circular muscles to the NO donor, sodium nitroprusside. It also reduced the frequency of colonic migrating motor complexes and decreased circular muscle tone, effects reversed by the NO synthase inhibitor, Nω-Nitro-L-arginine. CONCLUSION AND IMPLICATIONS: Our study is the first to provide evidence that oxidative stress is a key player in enteric neuropathy and colonic dysmotility leading to symptoms of chronic constipation observed in oxaliplatin-treated mice.
Sugar- and Intense-Sweetened Drinks in Australia: A Systematic Review on Cardiometabolic Risk
Sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) are consumed globally, and have been associated with adverse health outcomes, including weight gain, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes (T2D), and cardiovascular disease (CVD). There is global variation in beverage formulation in terms of glucose and fructose concentration, which may pose unique health risks linked to glycemic control for Australian consumers. However, previous systematic reviews have overlooked Australian-based literature. A systematic review was performed to synthesise evidence for the associations between consumption of SSBs and intense-sweetened beverages with clinical cardiometabolic risk factors in the Australian population. Articles were sourced from Global Health, Health Source: Nursing/Academic Edition, Medline, and Culmative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature. To be eligible for review, studies had to report on the consumption of sugar-sweetened (including fruit juice and fruit drinks) and/or intense-sweetened beverages, and at least one clinical cardiometabolic risk factor. Eighteen studies were included in this review. Research has mostly focused on the relationship between SSB consumption and adiposity-related outcomes. No studies have examined indices of glycaemic control (glucose/insulin), and the evidence for the health impact of intense-sweetened drinks is limited. In addition, studies have primarily been of cross-sectional design, and have examined children and adolescents, as opposed to adult populations. In the Australian population, there is modest but consistent evidence that SSB consumption has adverse associations with weight, but there is insufficient data to assess relationships with cardiometabolic outcomes.
G-CSF does not influence C2C12 myogenesis despite receptor expression in healthy and dystrophic skeletal muscle (vol 5, 170, 2014)
(FRONTIERS MEDIA SA, 2017-10-30)
[This corrects the article on p. 170 in vol. 5, PMID: 24822049.].
Chemotherapy-Induced Constipation and Diarrhea: Pathophysiology, Current and Emerging Treatments
(FRONTIERS MEDIA SA, 2016-11-03)
Gastrointestinal (GI) side-effects of chemotherapy are a debilitating and often overlooked clinical hurdle in cancer management. Chemotherapy-induced constipation (CIC) and Diarrhea (CID) present a constant challenge in the efficient and tolerable treatment of cancer and are amongst the primary contributors to dose reductions, delays and cessation of treatment. Although prevalence of CIC is hard to estimate, it is believed to affect approximately 16% of cancer patients, whilst incidence of CID has been estimated to be as high as 80%. Despite this, the underlying mechanisms of both CID and CIC remain unclear, but are believed to result from a combination of intersecting mechanisms including inflammation, secretory dysfunctions, GI dysmotility and alterations in GI innervation. Current treatments for CIC and CID aim to reduce the severity of symptoms rather than combating the pathophysiological mechanisms of dysfunction, and often result in worsening of already chronic GI symptoms or trigger the onset of a plethora of other side-effects including respiratory depression, uneven heartbeat, seizures, and neurotoxicity. Emerging treatments including those targeting the enteric nervous system present promising avenues to alleviate CID and CIC. Identification of potential targets for novel therapies to alleviate chemotherapy-induced toxicity is essential to improve clinical outcomes and quality of life amongst cancer sufferers.
The autophagy initiator ULK1 sensitizes AMPK to allosteric drugs
(NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP, 2017-09-18)
AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is a metabolic stress-sensing enzyme responsible for maintaining cellular energy homeostasis. Activation of AMPK by salicylate and the thienopyridone A-769662 is critically dependent on phosphorylation of Ser108 in the β1 regulatory subunit. Here, we show a possible role for Ser108 phosphorylation in cell cycle regulation and promotion of pro-survival pathways in response to energy stress. We identify the autophagy initiator Unc-51-like kinase 1 (ULK1) as a β1-Ser108 kinase in cells. Cellular β1-Ser108 phosphorylation by ULK1 was dependent on AMPK β-subunit myristoylation, metabolic stress associated with elevated AMP/ATP ratio, and the intrinsic energy sensing capacity of AMPK; features consistent with an AMP-induced myristoyl switch mechanism. We further demonstrate cellular AMPK signaling independent of activation loop Thr172 phosphorylation, providing potential insight into physiological roles for Ser108 phosphorylation. These findings uncover new mechanisms by which AMPK could potentially maintain cellular energy homeostasis independently of Thr172 phosphorylation.AMPK is involved in sensing of metabolic stress. The authors show that the autophagy initiator ULK1 phosphorylates β1-Ser108 on the regulatory β1-subunit, sensitizing AMPK to allosteric drugs, and activates signaling pathways that appear independent of Thr172 phosphorylation in the kinase activation loop.
MicroRNA-194 Modulates Glucose Metabolism and Its Skeletal Muscle Expression Is Reduced in Diabetes
(PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE, 2016-05-10)
BACKGROUND: The regulation of microRNAs (miRNAs) at different stages of the progression of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and their role in glucose homeostasis was investigated. METHODS: Microarrays were used to assess miRNA expression in skeletal muscle biopsies taken from healthy individuals and patients with pre-diabetes or T2DM, and insulin resistant offspring of rat dams fed a high fat diet during pregnancy. RESULTS: Twenty-three miRNAs were differentially expressed in patients with T2DM, and 7 in the insulin resistant rat offspring compared to their controls. Among these, only one miRNA was similarly regulated: miR-194 expression was significantly reduced by 25 to 50% in both the rat model and in human with pre-diabetes and established diabetes. Knockdown of miR-194 in L6 skeletal muscle cells induced an increase in basal and insulin-stimulated glucose uptake and glycogen synthesis. This occurred in conjunction with an increased glycolysis, indicated by elevated lactate production. Moreover, oxidative capacity was also increased as we found an enhanced glucose oxidation in presence of the mitochondrial uncoupler FCCP. When miR-194 was down-regulated in vitro, western blot analysis showed an increased phosphorylation of AKT and GSK3β in response to insulin, and an increase in expression of proteins controlling mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation. CONCLUSIONS: Type 2 diabetes mellitus is associated with regulation of several miRNAs in skeletal muscle. Interestingly, miR-194 was a unique miRNA that appeared regulated across different stages of the disease progression, from the early stages of insulin resistance to the development of T2DM. We have shown miR-194 is involved in multiple aspects of skeletal muscle glucose metabolism from uptake, through to glycolysis, glycogenesis and glucose oxidation, potentially via mechanisms involving AKT, GSK3 and oxidative phosphorylation. MiR-194 could be down-regulated in patients with early features of diabetes as an adaptive response to facilitate tissue glucose uptake and metabolism in the face of insulin resistance.