Oxidative stress stimulates two opposite signaling pathways leading to cell death and cell survival. Preferential selection of survival signals leads to the protection of cells against damage induced by reactive oxygen species, whereas preferential acceleration of death signals can be used to advantage in tumor therapy with oxidizing agents such as ionizing radiation and anticancer drugs. In vitro and in vivo experiments using cultured mammalian cells and experimental animals showed that ERK was included in survival signals and SAPK and p38 MAPK in death signals in oxidative stress. The activation of SAPK/JNK and subsequent expression of death receptor Fas on the cell surface caused the induction of cell death. The results mean that the acceleration of the activation of SAPK/JNK might lead to the enhancement of cell death by oxidizing agents like ionizing radiation and anticancer drugs. In fact, when cultured mammalian cells were exposed to ionizing radiation with 2-nitroimidazole derivatives having electrophilicity, the lethal effect of ionizing radiation was found to be enhanced together with the activation of SAPK/JNK and the enhancement of Fas expression. The activation of both survival and death signals was suppressed by the antioxidants N-acetylcystein and Trolox, suggesting that both signaling pathways are redox-regulated.
Effect of Calendula officinalis flower extract was investigated against experimentally induced thermal burns in rats. Burn injury was made on the shaven back of the rats under anesthesia and the animals were treated orally with different doses of the flower extract (20 mg, 100 mg and 200 mg/kg body weight). The animals treated with the extract showed significant improvement in healing when compared with the control untreated animals. The indicators of the wound healing such as collagen-hydroxyproline and hexosamine contents were significantly increased in the treated group indicating accelerated wound healing in the treated animals. The acute phase proteins—haptoglobin and orosomucoid which were increased due to burn injury were found to be decreased significantly in 200 mg/kg body weight extract treated animals. The antioxidant defense mechanism, which was decreased in the liver during burn injury, was found to be enhanced in treated animals. The lipid peroxidation was significantly lowered in the treated group when compared to control animals. Tissue damage marker enzymes- alkaline phosphatase, alanine and aspartate transaminases were significantly lowered in the treated groups in a dose dependant manner. The histopathological analyses of skin tissue also give the evidence of the increased healing potential of the extract after burn injury.
Linoleic acid (LA) preincubated with cyclooxygenase (COX)-1 or -2 inhibited prostaglandin (PG) formation from arachidonic acid (AA) catalyzed by the respective enzyme, but LA without the preincubation did not. 13S-Hydroperoxy-9Z,11E-octadecadienoic acid (13-HPODE) a hydroperoxy adduct of LA inhibited PG formation catalyzed by COX-1 or -2. 13S-Hydroxy-9Z,11E-octadecadienoic acid had no effect on both COX-1 and -2 activities. These results suggest that 13-HPODE which is preformed from LA by COX reaction under normal physiological conditions can be a basal suppressor of PG formation from AA.
Effects of astaxanthin (AX) derived from H. pluvialis on human blood rheology were investigated in 20 adult men with a single-blind method. The experimental group was 57.5 ± 9.8 years of age and the placebo group was 50.8 ± 13.1 years of age. A blood rheology test that measures whole blood transit time was conducted using heparinized blood of the volunteers by a MC-FAN apparatus (microchannel array flow analyzer). After administration of AX 6 mg/day for 10 days, the values of the experimental group were decreased from 52.8 ± 4.9 s to 47.6 ± 4.2 s (p<0.01) and a comparison of the values between the experimental (47.6 ± 4.2 s) and the placebo (54.2 ± 6.7 s) groups showed a significant difference (p<0.05). There were no adverse effects resulting from the administration of AX 6 mg/day for 10 days. Informed consent was obtained from each subject.
The immunological properties and hormonal metabolism in rodents are affected by physical and psychological stress more strongly in males than in females. To elucidate the mechanism and physiological significance of the sex difference in the susceptibility of animal to stresses, changes in the immunological system in plasma and intestine and hormonal status in plasma were compared among 8-week-old male and female ICR mice before and after fasting. During the fasting of animals, the expression of immunoglobulin A in intestinal mucosa, and cortisol, interleukin-10 and interferon-γ in plasma increased. These changes occurred more apparently in males than in females. Under identical conditions, the plasma levels of testosterone decreased markedly with concomitant occurrence of apoptosis in the testis, while the plasma levels of estradiol decreased calmly, and no appreciable apoptosis occurred in the ovary. These results indicate that testosterone enhances the stress-induced modulation of the immune system by some mechanism that was antagonized by estradiol.
The aim of this study was to determine the effectiveness of education on diabetes prevention in subjects with impaired glucose tolerance. A total of 100 subjects of impaired glucose tolerance with hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) levels ≥5.5 to <6.1% were assigned randomly to either support or control groups. All subjects received education in 8 sessions over a 6-month period. The support group consisted of 10 members collaborating with a dietitian or a nurse who learned coping skills by employing a participant-centered approach. Participants in the support group were required to keep a diary that monitored weight, food intake and blood glucose levels, while the control group attended several lectures. Subjects assigned to the support group had a reduction in mean HbA1c levels from 5.77 ± 0.36% at baseline to 5.39 ± 0.24% at the endpoint (p<0.01). Weight, total cholesterol (TC), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), and triglyceride (TG) levels also decreased (p<0.01) in the support group, whereas subjects in the control group had no observable reduction in these indices. After intervention, participants of the support group had improvements in their 2-h post-meal blood glucose levels. Support group education can be effective for improving glycemic control in participants when carried out in collaboration with educators and other team members.
Accumulating data demonstrated that hypercholesterolemia and oxidative stress play an important role in the development of atherosclerosis. In the present study, a protective activity of alpha-lipoic acid; a metabolic antioxidant in hypercholesterolemic-induced animals was investigated. Eighteen adult male New Zealand White (NZW) rabbit were segregated into three groups labelled as group N, HCD and ALA (n = 6). Group N (normal control) was fed with normal chow, the rest (HCD and ALA) were fed with 100 g/head/day of 1% cholesterol rich diet to induce hypercholesterolemia. Four point two mg/body weight of alpha lipoic acid was concomintantly supplemented to the ALA group. Drinking water was given ad-libitum. The study was designed for 10 weeks. Blood sampling was taken from the ear lobe vein at the beginning, week 5 and week 10. Plasma was prepared for lipid profile estimation and microsomal lipid peroxidation index indicated with malondialdehyde (MDA) formation. At the end of the experiment, the animals were sacrificed and the aorta were excised for intimal lesion analysis. The plasma total cholesterol (TC) and low density lipoprotein (LDL) levels were found to be significantly low in ALA group compared to that of the HCD group (p<0.05). Similarly, low level of MDA (p<0.05) in ALA group was observed compared to that of the HCD group showing a significant reduction of lipid peroxidation activity. Histomorphometric intimal lesion analysis of the aorta showing less of atheromatous plaque formation in alpha lipoic acid supplemented group (p<0.05) compared to HCD group. These findings suggested that alpha lipoic acid posses a dual lipid lowering and anti-atherosclerotic properties indicated with low plasma TC and LDL levels and reduction of athero-lesion formation in hypercholesterolemic-induced rabbits.
γ-Tocopherol, the major form of dietary vitamin E, is absorbed in the intestine and is secreted in chylomicrons, which are then transferred to liver lysosomes. Most γ-tocopherol is transferred to liver microsomes and is catabolized by cytochrome p450. Due to the hydrophobicity of γ-tocopherol, a binding and transfer protein is plausible, but none have yet been isolated and characterized. We recently found that a ubiquitous cytosolic protein, saposin B, binds and transfers coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), which is an essential factor for ATP production and an important antioxidant. Here, we report that saposin B also binds γ-tocopherol, but not α-tocopherol, as efficiently as CoQ10 at pH 7.4. At acidic pH, saposin B binds γ-tocopherol preferentially to CoQ10 and α-tocopherol. Furthermore, we confirmed that saposin B selectively binds γ-tocopherol instead of CoQ10 and α-tocopherol at every pH between 5.4 and 8.0 when all three lipids are competing for binding. We detected γ-tocopherol in human saposin B monoclonal antibody-induced immunoprecipitates from human urine, although the amount of γ-tocopherol was much smaller than that of CoQ10. These results suggest that saposin B binds and transports γ-tocopherol in human cells.
To explore the metabolic effects of Bcl-2 in tumor cells, a stable clone of HuH-7/bcl-2 and its control HuH-7/neo were established. Mitochondrial localization of ectopic Bcl-2 was demonstrated both by western blotting and immunofluorescence. HuH-7/bcl-2 cells consumed glucose at a higher rate, exhausted the available cellular ATP and died on day 9, while HuH-7/neo cells were still alive for 10 days under the same condition where cells were cultured without replenishment of the medium. The expression of the hexokinase II gene was up-regulated in HuH-7/bcl-2 at its protein level. Taken together, we suggest that the forced expression of Bcl-2 in human hepatoma may cause the cells to become more glucose-dependent for survival.
Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is one of the most widespread human pathogens, and plays major roles in chronic gastritis and gastric cancer. CD74 of gastric epithelial cells has recently been identified as an adhesion molecule to urease in H. pylori. In this study, we found that CD74 is highly expressed in a constitutive manner in NCI-N87 human gastric carcinoma cells at both the protein and mRNA levels as compared with Hs738St./Int fetal gastric cells. Subsequently, a novel cell-based ELISA able to rapidly screen the suppressive agents of CD74 expression was established. NCI-N87 cells were treated separately with 25 different food phytochemicals (4–100 μM) for 48 h and subjected to our novel assay. From those results, a citrus coumarin, bergamottin, was indicated to be the most promising compound with an LC50/IC50 value greater than 7.1, followed by luteolin (>5.4), nobiletin (>5.3), and quercetin (>5.1). Our findings suggest that these CD74 suppressants are unique candidates for preventing H. pylori adhesion and subsequent infection with reasonable action mechanisms.
The health-promoting potential of 70% ethanolic extracts of 4 rice varieties fermented with Monascus ruber, Phellinus linteus, Cordyceps sinensis and Agaricus blazei was evaluated mainly focusing on their antioxidative and antimutagenic capacities based on the following parameters: phenolic compound and phytic acid content; inhibitory activity on lipid peroxidation; scavenging activity on DPPH radical; suppressing ability on mitomycin C-induced mutagenesis in E. coli cells; and protective effect on 4-nitroquinoline oxide-triggered DNA lesion in V79 hamster cells. The fermented rice extracts were superior in overall health-promoting parameters compared to the source material. The higher antimutagenic activity of the fermented rice extracts might be in part caused by a larger amount of antioxidant constituents such as phenolic compounds or phytic acid. Of the fungal species, Monascus ruber was found to impart a marked increase in both the antioxidative and antimutagenic abilities to the source material. The current study suggests a possibility that such fermented rice may contribute to the prevention of lifestyle-related diseases such as cancer through a daily intake of rice-based diets.
Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) is essential for normal cell growth, and may play an important role in inflammatory and autoimmune disorders including rheumatoid arthritis. We investigate that EPA could suppress the proliferation of fibroblast like synoviocytes in vitro. We treated synoviocytes with 1 to 50 μM EPA and measured cell viabilities by the modified MTT assay. We sorted the number of them in sub G1 stage by fluorescence-activated cell sorting caliber. And we stained them by light green or Hoechst 33258, and investigate microscopic appearance. The cell viabilities were decreased at 30 μM, 40 μM, and 50 μM of EPA comparing to 0 μM of EPA. The half maximal concentration of synoviocytes inhibition was approximately 25 μM. At day 1 and day 3, cell number was also decreased at 50 μM EPA comparing to control. FACS caliber indicated the number of synoviocytes in sub G1 stage did not increase in each concentration of EPA. Hoechst staining indicated normal chromatin pattern and no change in a nuclear morphology both in EPA treated synoviocytes and in untreated synoviocytes. These findings suggest that EPA could suppress the proliferation of synoviocytes in vivo dose dependently and time dependently, however, the mechanism is not due to apoptosis.