Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are persistent bioaccumulative toxicants. These synthetic organochlorinated compounds are well documented for their carcinogenic property, reproductive, neuro, hepato and developmental toxicities. Diallyl disulfide (DADS), a garlic organosulfur compound exerts its effect as a chemopreventive agent via the modulation of drug metabolizing enzymes which has led us to hypothesize that DADS could ameliorate the PCB-induced toxicity in liver and ventral prostate of the rats. In the present investigation, experimentally induced PCB toxicity elevated the activities of phase I enzymes and lipid peroxides level, whereas lowered the levels of phase II enzymes. Oral administration of DADS for 7 days modulated the levels of drug metabolizing enzymes and reduced the lipid peroxides level. These results suggest that PCBs can be readily metabolized by DADS administration through enhancing phase II enzymes thereby it reduces the toxic effects.
Schistosomiasis is characterized by a unique form of periportal fibrosis and not cirrhosis. Heme oxygenase (HO-1) is a stress inducible molecule that could modulate the fibrogenic process in the murine model of schistosoma mansoni. In this study, the extent of heme oxygenase-1 gene expression was evaluated by RT-PCR in liver tissues of thirty mice infested with schistosoma mansoni after the 2nd, 4th, 6th, 8th and 10th weeks of infestation. Furthermore, the gene expression of some fibrogenic and antifibrogenic factors [pro α2 (I) collagen, laminin β1, transforming growth factor β (TGF-β), platelet derived growth factor (PDGF) and hepatocyte growth factor (HGF)], apoptotic factors (Fas L) and the transcriptional factor nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) were also evaluated in liver tissues of the same animals by RT-PCR techniques. The PCR bands densities were semi-quantitated using Biometra gel documentation system. The present study showed that the gene expression of HO-1 coincided with the expression of NF-κB. Both were induced from the 2nd week post infestation and their PCR band density remained high till the 8th week with a slight decline at the 10th week. The gene expression of HO-1 paralleled the levels of HO activity. On the other hand, increase in gene expression of HGF and Fas L was detected only in the 2nd and the 4th weeks post infestation. This may suggest a down regulation of Fas L and HGF by the sustained increase in gene expression of HO-1 and/or NF-κB. Meanwhile, there is increase in the gene expression of the profibrogenic cytokines PDGF and TGF-β, starting in the 4th week (PDGF) and 6th week (TGF-β). They were however expressed at low levels at the 2nd and 4th weeks, respectively. Thus a direct effect of HO-1 on the expression of these cytokines cannot be sharply delineated. However, the expression of these cytokines preceded and then paralleled pro α2 (1) collagen gene expression, indicating their role in the fibrogenic process. Laminin gene expression increased from the 6th week and remained highly expressed till the 10th weeks. Thus the similar patterns of gene expression of HO-1 and NF-κB at the selected stages in murine schistosomiasis and the accompanying down regulation of the Fas L suggest that, as a stress inducible protein, HO-1 might be part of the protective mechanisms elicited by the acute phase response in Schistosoma mansoni infection possibly by protecting the cells against the consequences of oxidative stress (i.e. apoptotic and necrotic pathways). HO-1 gene expression may play a role in the modulation of the immunopathology of schistosomiasis and hence, indirectly influence fibrogenesis and prevent cirrhosis.
The present study was carried out to investigate whether fresh butter could affect on the serum lipid profile, total triglyceride (TG), total cholesterol (TC), low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-c), high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-c), %LDL-c and HDL-c/LDL-c ratio in human. The research was conducted on fifteen volunteer healthy human males, whose background, clinical and dietary information were collected. Fresh butter 20 g/day was taken by individuals at breakfast for 20 days without changing their traditional diet. Blood samples were taken at 10th and 20th days from each individual. According to experimental data, fresh butter consumption was found to cause different effects on the levels of serum TG, TC, LDL-c, HDL-c, %LDL-c and HDL-c/LDL-c in comparing with the beginning values. Their values did not significantly increase at 10th day. However, the levels of TG and HDL-c increased significantly at 20th day of butter consumption period. Also, there was an appreciable increase in TC, LDL-c and %LDL-c levels causing arteriosclerosis at both 10th and 20th day of research period. It was concluded that fresh butter might affect on human lipid profile.
To survey the risk factors in multi-infarct dementia (MID), the levels of fatty acids in serum were measured for MID patients and compared with those of healthy individuals. Examined were 40 MID patients aged 57-94 and 152 healthy control subjects aged 50-89. The mean levels of polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA), monounsaturated fatty acid and saturated fatty acid of MID were lower than those of the control subjects (p<0.001, respectively). The total amounts of n-3 PUFA and n-6 PUFA in MID were significantly lower than those in control subjects (p<0.01 and p<0.05, respectively) but there were no differences among those of the ratios of n-3/n-6 PUFA. When compared with those of control subjects, low eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA, C20:5n-3) and high arachidonic acid (AA, C20:4n-6) were found in MID (p<0.001, respectively). No significant differences were found in the mean levels of docosahexaenoic acids (DHA, C22:6n-3) between MID and control subjects. The levels of EPA/AA and DHA/AA ratios were lower and the levels of DHA/EPA ratios were higher for the MID than for the control subjects (p<0.001, p<0.01, and p<0.001, respectively). The EPA/AA ratios showed a positive correlation with the DHA/AA ratios in MID patients and control subjects (r=0.65 and r=0.77, p<0.001, respectively). The ratios of DHA/AA showed a positive correlation with the DHA/EPA levels in control subjects (r=0.25, p<0.01), but there was no correlation in the dementia patients. These results suggest that the low EPA and high AA levels and the high DHA/EPA and low DHA/AA ratios might be useful indicators of MID.