The calcium (Ca2+)-paradox injury of the heart, induced by restoration of extracellular Ca2+ after its short-term depletion, is known to provoke cardiomyocyte contracture. However, undetermined is how the Ca2+-paradox provokes such a distinctive presentation of myocytes in the heart. To address this, we imaged sequential intracellular Ca2+ dynamics and concomitant structures of the subepicardial ventricular myocytes in fluo3-loaded, Langendorff-perfused rat hearts produced by the Ca2+ paradox. Under rapid-scanning confocal microscopy, repletion of Ca2+ following its depletion produced high-frequency Ca2+ waves in individual myocytes with asynchronous localized contractions, resulting in contracture within 10 min. Such alterations of myocytes were attenuated by 5-mM NiCl2, but not by verapamil, SEA0400, or combination of ryanodine and thapsigargin, indicating a contribution of non-specific transmembrane Ca2+ influx in the injury. However, saponin-induced membrane permeabilization of Ca2+ showed no apparent contracture despite the emergence of high-frequency Ca2+ waves, indicating an essential role of myocyte-myocyte and myocyte-extracellular matrix (ECM) mechanical connections in the Ca2+ paradox. In immunohistochemistry Ca2+ depletion produced separation of the intercalated disc that expresses cadherin and dissipation of β-dystroglycan located along the sarcolemma. Taken together, along with the trans-sarcolemmal Ca2+ influx, disruption of cell-cell and cell-ECM connections is essential for contracture in the Ca2+-paradox injury.
We established a new “ecological” Grocott stain for demonstrating fungi, based upon a 4R principle of refusal, reduction, reuse, and recycle of waste management. Conventional Grocott stain employs environmentally harsh 5% chromic acid for oxidization. Initially, we succeeded in reducing the concentration of chromic acid from 5% to 1% by incubating the solution at 60°C and using five-fold diluted chromic acid solution at which point it was reusable. Eventually, we reached the refusal level where 1% periodic acid oxidization was efficient enough, when combined with preheating of sections in the electric jar, microwave oven, or pressure pan. For convenience sake, we recommend pressure pan heating in tap water for 10 min. Stainability of fungi in candidiasis and aspergillosis was comparable with conventional Grocott stain, while Mucor hyphae showed enhanced staining. The modified sequence was further applicable to detecting a variety of mycotic pathogens in paraffin sections. Our environmentally-friendly Grocott stain also has the advantage of avoiding risk of human exposure to hexavalent chromium solution in the histopathology laboratory. The simple stain sequence is can be easily applied worldwide.
Spontaneous regression (SR) of human melanoma is a rare, well-documented phenomenon that is not still fully understood. Its detailed study cannot be performed in patients due to ethical reasons. Using the Melanoma-bearing Libechov Minipig (MeLiM) animals of various ages (from 3 weeks to 8 months) we implemented a long-term monitoring of melanoma growth and SR. We focused on immunohistochemical detection of two important extracellular matrix proteins, collagen IV and laminin, which are associated with cancer. We showed that SR of melanoma is a highly dynamic process. The expression of collagen IV and laminin correlated with changes in population of melanoma cells. Tumours of 3-week-old animals consisted primarily of melanoma cells with a granular expression of collagen IV and laminin around them. Thereafter, melanoma cells were gradually destroyed and tumour tissue was rebuilt into the connective tissue. Collagen IV expression slightly increased in tumours of 10-week-old pigs showing extracellular fibrous appearance. In tumours of older animals, areas lacking melanoma cells demonstrated a low expression and areas still containing melanoma cells a high expression of both proteins. We considered the age of 10 weeks as a turning point in the transition between tumour growth and SR of the MeLiM melanoma.