Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin
Online ISSN : 1347-5215
Print ISSN : 0918-6158
ISSN-L : 0918-6158
Advance online publication
Displaying 1-12 of 12 articles from this issue
  • Ken-ichi Ishibashi, Nobuteru Onaka, Norihisa Nishida, Madoka Takahashi ...
    Article ID: b22-00247
    Published: 2022
    Advance online publication: June 25, 2022
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    Euglena gracilis is a microalga that has recently attracted attention because of its bioactivities. Paramylon (PM), a major β-1,3-glucan, constitutes 70%–80% of the cells of the E. gracilis EOD-1 strain. Dectin-1 is a pattern recognition receptor that recognizes β-glucan. However, it is unclear whether PM binds to dectin-1. In this study, we investigated the reactivity of EOD1PM with dectin-1 by analyzing the binding of soluble murine and human dectin-1–Fc fusion protein (m dectin-1 Fc, h dectin-1 Fc) to EOD1PM using flow cytometry and ELISA.

    m dectin-1 Fc bound to EOD1PM particles when m dectin-1-Fc is added. Furthermore, the binding specificity was examined in a competitive reaction following addition of a soluble antigen. It was found that the binding of m dectin-1-Fc to EOD1PM was not inhibited by the addition of dextran or ovalbumin but by the addition of solubilized EOD1PM or Candida cell wall- solubilized β-glucan. In addition, the h dectin-1–Fc fusion protein was found to specifically bind to EOD1PM. These results suggest that dectin-1 recognizes and binds to the β-glucan structure of EOD1PM.

    Dectin-1 is expressed in leukocytes as a β-glucan receptor and is involved in the expression of various biological activities; therefore, the dectin-1 pathway may be involved in the biological activity of EOD1PM.

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  • Xianbin Wang, Tiantian Qu, Chuanfen Sun, Mingyu Wang
    Article ID: b22-00194
    Published: 2022
    Advance online publication: June 21, 2022
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    Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a key mediator of angiogenesis, which plays a key role in the proliferation, migration and invasion of endothelial cell. Bisdemethoxycurcumin (BDMC) is a natural demethoxy curcumin derivative. In this study, we explored the mechanisms whereby BDMC is able to influence the proliferative, migratory and invasive activity of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) in response to VEGF treatment. These experiments revealed that BDMC at 10 and 20μM suppressed HUVECs proliferation in response to VEGF (10 ng/mL) without impacting the proliferation in absence of VEGF. BDMC treatment also signifantly suppressed VEGF-induced migratory and invasive activity in HUVECs. However, the selective AMPK inhibitor compound C (3 μM) treatment signifantly reversed all of these effects. Flow cytometric assay showed BDMC treatment was found to induce G0/G1 phase cell cycle arrest. Western blotting further indicated that BDMC treatment increased the ratios of p-AMPK/AMPK and LC3B/LC3A, up-regulated the expression of Beclin-1, decreased the ratio of p-mTOR/mTOR, down-regulated the expression of cyclin D1 and CDK4. Overall, these data suggested that BDMC may exert benefical effect on HUVECs activation by activating autophagy and inducing cell cycle arrest through regulation of the AMPK/mTOR pathway, which could provide a potential compound candidate for the treatment of diseases related to VEGF overproduction.

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  • Wei Zhang, Chao Liu, Mengmeng Wang, Zhizhou Yang, Jian Yang, Yi Ren, L ...
    Article ID: b22-00001
    Published: 2022
    Advance online publication: May 31, 2022
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    Macrophages are key in innate immune responses and play vital roles in homeostasis and inflammatory diseases. Phosphatidylserine-specific phospholipase A1 (PS-PLA1) is a specific phospholipase which hydrolyzes fatty acid from the sn-1 position of phosphatidylserine (PS) to produce lysophosphatidylserine (lysoPS). Both PS and lysoPS are associated with activation of immune cells including macrophages. However, the effect of PS-PLA1 on macrophage inflammation remains unclear. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the role of PS-PLA1 in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced macrophage inflammation. Alterations of PS-PLA1 expression in LPS-stimulated RAW264.7 macrophages were investigated via Western blot. PS-PLA1 stable knockdown and overexpression RAW264.7 cell lines were generated by infecting cells with appropriate lentiviral vectors, respectively. PS-PLA1 expression was found to be dramatically upregulated in RAW264.7 macrophages after LPS stimulation. PS-PLA1 knockdown promotes while PS-PLA1 overexpression ameliorates the release of TNF-α, IL-1β and nitric oxide from RAW264.7 cells and M1 macrophage polarization. Additionally, PS-PLA1 knockdown facilitates phosphorylation of p38, ERK and JNK, while PS-PLA1 overexpression attenuates their phosphorylation. Moreover, mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) inhibitors blocks the release of TNF-α and IL-1β in PS-PLA1 knockdown RAW264.7 cells after LPS stimulation. These findings suggest PS-PLA1 ameliorates LPS-induced macrophage inflammation by inhibiting MAPKs activation, and PS-PLA1 might be considered as a target for modulating macrophage inflammation.

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  • Makiko Shimizu, Riku Hayasaka, Yusuke Kamiya, Hiroshi Yamazaki
    Article ID: b22-00221
    Published: 2022
    Advance online publication: May 27, 2022
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    A system for predicting apparent bidirectional permeability (Papp) across Caco-2 cells of diverse chemicals has been reported. The present study aimed to investigate the relationship between in silico-generated Papp (from apical to basal side, Papp A to B) for 301 substances with diverse structures and a binary classification of the reported roles of efflux P-glycoprotein or breast cancer resistant protein. The in silico log(Papp AtoB/Papp BtoA) values of 70 substances with reported active efflux and 231 substances with no reported active efflux were significantly different (p < 0.01). The probabilities of active efflux transport estimated by trivariate analysis with logMW, logDpH6.0, and logDpH7.4 for the 70 active-efflux-positive compounds were higher than those of the other 231 substances (p < 0.01); the area under the corresponding receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve was 0.81. Further probability values estimated using a machine learning algorithm with 30 chemical descriptors as inputs yielded an area under the ROC curve of 0.79. Using a secondary set of 52 efflux-positive and 48 efflux-negative medicines, the final trivariate-generated probabilities resulted in no significant differences between these binary groups (p = 0.09); however, the final machine learning model demonstrated a good area under the ROC curve of 0.79. Consequently, a combination of the previously established system for generating the permeability coefficients across intestinal monolayers (a continuous variable) and the currently proposed system for predicting the roles of additional active efflux (a binary classification) could prove useful; high accuracy was achieved by applying machine learning using in silico-generated chemical descriptors.

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  • Shohei Nakano, Norihisa Mikami, Mai Miyawaki, Saho Yamasaki, Shoko Miy ...
    Article ID: b21-01096
    Published: 2022
    Advance online publication: May 24, 2022
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    Combination treatment using fingolimod (FTY720), an immunomodulator, and a pathogenic antigen prevents the progression of glucose-6-phosphate isomerase (GPI)325-339-induced arthritis. In this study, we focused on myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs; CD11b+Gr-1+ cells) and investigated the effects of the combination treatment on these cells. DBA/1J mice with GPI325-339-induced arthritis were treated using FTY720 and/or GPI325-339 for five days. The expanded CD11b+Gr-1+ cell population and its inhibitory potential were examined. The percentage of CD369+CD11b+Gr-1+ cells effectively increased in the combination-treated mice. The inhibitory potential of CD369+CD11b+Gr-1+ cells was higher than that of cells not expressing CD369. Among bone marrow cells, the expression of CD369 in CD11b+Gr-1+ cells increased following stimulation with granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor, and the expression of CD11c increased accordingly. The increased CD11c expression indicated a decrease in the potential to suppress T cell proliferation based on the results of the suppression assay. The percentage of CD11cCD369+ cells in CD11b+Gr-1+ cells that were induced by the combination treatment also increased, and these cells tended to have a higher capacity to inhibit T cell proliferation. In conclusion, the combination treatment using FTY720 and the pathogenic antigen effectively induces MDSC, which demonstrates a high potential for suppressing T cell proliferation in the lymph nodes, thereby establishing an immune-tolerant state.

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  • Hongliu Chen, Ying Shen, Yi Liang, Ying Qiu, Meili Xu, Chaoqian Li
    Article ID: b21-01057
    Published: 2022
    Advance online publication: May 20, 2022
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    Selexipag, a long-acting and selective prostacyclin (PGI2) IP receptor agonist, has in aged rats with stroke revealed effects of inhibiting inflammation, ameliorating damage to the blood-brain barrier, and alleviating oxidative stress. However, in the case of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) characterized by diffuse alveolar damage and lung capillary endothelial injury, its effects yet remain unknown. In this study, we investigated effects of the prophylaxis by Selexipag on a mouse model of ARDS established by the Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) challenge and potential mechanism. Compared to the LPS-challenged mice, the LPS-challenged mice with the prophylaxis by 0.5 mg/kg or 1 mg/kg of Selexipag exhibited significantly alleviated lung histological manifestations, reduced protein leakage, decreased levels of interleukin (IL)-1β, IL-6, and monocyte chemotactic protein-1 (MCP-1), diminished expressions of E-selectin and vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1) mRNA, noticeably increased expressions of zonula occludens-1 (ZO-1) and vascular endothelial cadherin (VE-cadherin) protein, escalated lung cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) levels, and raised levels of lung relative phosphorylated-protein kinase A catalytic subunit (p-PKA C) at Thr197 and exchange protein activated by cAMP 1 (Epac1) protein. These results suggest that, through suppressing inflammation and reducing vascular endothelial damage, Selexipag can effectively ameliorate the LPS-induced ARDS on mice. The lung cAMP and its downstream signaling modules, PKA and Epac1, possibly constitute the main regulative molecular mechanism. Selexipag appears to hold promise to become a new potential therapeutic option for ARDS.

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  • Linghui Zou, Wenya Ding, Qiuyan Huang, Xu Yang, Jilang Li, Tianyan Hua ...
    Article ID: b22-00154
    Published: 2022
    Advance online publication: May 20, 2022
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    Andrographolide (AG), a natural product with various pharmacological effects, exhibited low oral bioavailability owing to its poor solubility, stability and low absorption. Previous studies have suggested that phospholipid (PC) and hydroxypropyl-β-cyclodextrin (HPCD) could improve the drug solubility and absorption. Moreover, nanoemulsion (NE) has been confirmed as an appropriate enhancer for oral bioavailability. Therefore, AG/HPCD/PC complex (AHPC) was synthesized, and AHPC-loaded nanoemulsion (AHPC-NE) was optimized and prepared using central composite design combined response surface methodology. The average droplet size and PDI were 116.50±5.99 nm and 0.29±0.03, respectively. AHPC-NE with a loading capacity of 0.32 ± 0.01% and an encapsulation efficiency of 96.43 ± 2.27% appeared round and uniformly dispersed based on transmission electron microscopy. In vivo release studies demonstrated that AHPC-NE had good sustained-release effects. Further, AHPC-NE significantly enhanced the absorption of AG with a relative bioavailability of 550.71% compared to AG suspension. Such findings reveal AHPC-NE as a potential strategy for sustained-release and oral bioavailability enhancement.

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  • Tsuneki Horikawa, Keiichi Hiramoto, Shota Tanaka, Kazuya Ooi
    Article ID: b22-00241
    Published: 2022
    Advance online publication: May 17, 2022
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    Various diabetic drugs have been developed as the number of patients with type 2 diabetes has increased. Sodium-glucose cotransporter (SGLT)-2 inhibitors have been developed as novel therapeutic agents. However, SGLT-2 inhibitors cause skin dryness. The mechanism through which SGLT-2 inhibitors cause skin dryness is unknown. The purpose of this study was to investigate the mechanism through which dapagliflozin, a SGLT-2 inhibitor, induces skin dryness. Specific pathogen-free KK-Ay/TaJcl (type 2 diabetes model) mice were orally administered with SGLT-2 inhibitor (dapagliflozin) daily for 4 weeks at a dose of 1 mg/kg/day. Skin dryness induced in KK-Ay/TaJcl mice became severe after dapagliflozin administration. Dapagliflozin treatment decreased collagen type I and hyaluronic acid levels in mice; additionally, it affected the TGF-β/hyaluronan synthase pathway, further reducing hyaluronic acid levels. The results indicate that the reduction in hyaluronic acid levels plays an important role in the occurrence of dry skin in diabetes.

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  • Hiroko Tokumoto, Eiichi Yamamoto, Takashi Hakamatsuka, Nahoko Uchiyama
    Article ID: b22-00183
    Published: 2022
    Advance online publication: May 14, 2022
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    The microscopic test method (microscopic examination) used to identify crude drugs is a common method in the identification of the original plant source by determining the characteristics from a small sample quantity. However, in recent years, the number of examiners who are familiar with the microscopic examination technique has decreased.

    In recent years, high-resolution X-ray computed tomography (HRXCT) has been used to visualize the internal structure of plants. HRXCT scans an object using X-rays and enables visualization of the internal structure of the crude drug using a computer. Therefore, in this report, HRXCT was used to easily observe the internal morphology of crude drugs using the Ephedra Herb as an example. The same internal morphological characteristics were observed using both, microscopic examination and HRXCT methods. Image analysis using HRXCT did not require specific techniques, such as sectioning, and the same tissue could be observed from any orientation using a single scan. It afforded remarkable technical simplification and reduction in time to inspect the organization's characteristics. Therefore, image analysis using HRXCT is a useful method for crude drug identifications.

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  • Qian Zhou, Wei-Wei Wu, Chun-Lei Yu, Peng Wang, Xiao-Qian Wen, Bi-Ling ...
    Article ID: b21-01025
    Published: 2022
    Advance online publication: April 28, 2022
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    Saikosaponin A (SSA)—a natural compound extracted from Radix bupleuri—possesses antitumor properties in several types of carcinomas. However, the role of SSA on bladder cancer and the mechanisms remain unclear. In this study, we have described the effect of SSA on human bladder cancer cell lines T24 and 5637 in the context of the regulation of mitochondrial pathways of apoptosis. In vitro, the CCK-8 kit and cell wound healing assays were used to determine the proliferative effect of SSA treatment. Flow cytometry and Western blotting were performed to evaluate the apoptosis and related mechanisms. To further confirm that apoptosis is mediated through Caspase activation, Hoechst 33258 fluorescence staining assay was done after cells were treated with SSA and caspase inhibitor-Z-VAD-FMK. In vivo, an orthotopic xenograft mice model was adopted to evaluate the effect of SSA. The tumors were analyzed by HE staining, immunohistochemical analysis, and Western blotting. In vitro, the results with CCK-8 kit showed obvious SSA-induced suppression in cell growth in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Flow cytometry analysis, Hoechst 33258 fluorescence staining assay and the assessment of the changes in the Bcl-2 family protein expression level revealed that SSA could significantly induce cell apoptosis, which was associated with apoptosis via the mitochondrial pathways. In vivo, the results revealed a reduction in cell proliferation. In conclusion, our data suggest that SSA inhibits the growth of bladder cancer cells by activating the mitochondrial apoptosis pathway and inducing cell apoptosis.

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  • Takao Tobe, Misaki Kubo, Takahiro Toda, Mitsuhiro Morita, Mika Watanab ...
    Article ID: b22-00017
    Published: 2022
    Advance online publication: April 27, 2022
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    To identify patients at a high risk for primary and secondary osteoporotic fractures using fracture risk assessments performed using the current method and the proposed method, in an acute care hospital and to identify departments where high-risk patients are admitted. This retrospective study included patients aged 40–90 years who were hospitalized at Fujita Health University Hospital. We collated the clinical data and prescriptions of all study participants. We also gathered data pertaining to risk factors according to Fracture Risk Assessment Tool (FRAX). Of the 1,595 patients, the mean number of major osteoporotic fracture risk predicted using FRAX was 11.73%. The department of rheumatology showed the highest fracture risk (18.55 ± 16.81) and had the highest number of patients on medications that resulted in reduced bone mineral density (1.07 ± 0.98 medication). Based on the FRAX, the proportion of patients in the high-risk group in this department was significantly higher compared with those in the remaining departments with respect to glucocorticoid administration, rheumatoid arthritis, and secondary osteoporosis. However, the departments included in the high-risk group were not necessarily the same as the departments included in the top group, based on the administered medications. FRAX score is calculated based on various risk factors; however, only glucocorticoid corresponds to medications. We should focus on medication prescription patterns in addition to FRAX to improve fracture risk assessment in hospital-wide surveillance. Therefore, we recommend the use of FRAX along with the prescribed medications to identify departments that admit high-risk patients.

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  • Xin Wang, Qing Liu
    Article ID: b21-00329
    Published: 2021
    Advance online publication: August 20, 2021
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    Neuropathic pain is one of the most intractable diseases. The lack of effective therapy measures remains a critical problem due to the poor understanding of the cause of neuropathic pain. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of dexmedetomidine (Dex) in trigeminal neuropathic pain and the underlying molecular mechanism in order to identify possible therapeutic targets. We used a chronic constriction injury (CCI) model of mice to investigate whether Dex prevents neuropathic pain and the inflammation response. The α 2-adrenoceptors (α2AR) inhibitor BRL44408 and adenovirus for knocking down High mobility group box 1 (HMGB1) was administrated to confirm whether Dex exert its effect through targeting α2AR and HMGB1. The results indicated that Dex significantly inhibited CCI induced neuropathic pain through targeting α2AR and HMGB1. Dex inhibited the inflammatory response through decreasing the release and the mRNA expression of IL-1β, IL-6, and TNF-ɑ while increasing that of IL-10. Moreover, Dex participates in the regulation of HMGB1, Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4), NFκb (p-65) expression and the phosphorylation of IκB-ɑ. In conclusion, Dex could relieve neuropathic pain through α2AR and HMGB1 and attenuate inflammation response.

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