Nicotinamide N-methyltransferase (NNMT) catalyzes the N-methylation of nicotinamide. NNMT is strongly expressed in tumor cells and an increase in NNMT activity may reduce cellular nicotinamide level and thereby promote cell survival in the cells. However, there has been no report of a relationship between NNMT activity and nicotinamide level in tumor cells. We report herein that human glioma cells produce relatively large amounts of NNMT and that when these cells are cultured in the presence of interferon-γ (IFN-γ) their 1-methylnicotinamide levels increase. To clarify the mechanisms by which IFN-γ increases 1-methylnicotinamide levels in these cells, we measured NNMT activity and the levels of NNMT expression, nicotinamide and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) in the presence and absence of IFN-γ. We also examined whether addition of exogenous 1-methylnicotinamide directly affects cell viability and/or the cellular levels of 1-methylnicotinamide, nicotinamide and NAD+. While addition of 1-methylnicotinamide increased the total amount of cellular 1-methylnicotinamide present, it did not affect nicotinamide or NAD+ levels, or cell viability. Conversely, IFN-γ significantly increased NNMT activity and the nicotinamide cellular concentration, while leaving NNMT expression and the NAD+ cellular concentration unchanged. Therefore, the increase in the 1-methylnicotinamide level found when IFN-γ is present in culture may be a consequence of increases in both the nicotinamide concentration and NNMT activity, whereas, 1-methylnicotinamide did not influence nicotinamide levels, NAD+ levels, or cell viability per se. These results suggest that an increase in NNMT activity does not always reduce cellular nicotinamide concentration in tumor cells.
Diabetic encephalopathy is a severe complication in patients with long-term hyperglycemia. Oxidative stress is thought to be closely implicated in this disorder, so in this study, we examined whether grape seed proanthocyanidin extract (GSPE), a naturally occurring antioxidant derived from grape seeds, could reduce the injuries in the cerebral cortex of diabetic rats by modulating advanced glycation end products (AGEs)/the receptor for AGEs (RAGE)/nuclear factor-kappa B p65 (NF-κB p65) pathway, which is crucial in oxidative stress. Body weight and serum AGEs were tested; cerebral cortexes were isolated for morphological observations and the pyramidal cell layers were immunohistochemically stained for the detection of RAGE, NF-κB p65, intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) and vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1) as well. For RAGE and NF-κB p65, quantitative reverse transcriptase coupled to polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) was employed for determination of mRNA levels, and western blot was used to detect protein expression. Our results showed that long term hyperglycemia in diabetic rats caused the degeneration of neurons and the up-regulation of serum AGEs, and also the up-regulation of RAGE, NF-κB p65, VCAM-1 and ICAM-1 in the brain. We found that GSPE treatment improved the pathological changes of diabetic rats by modulating the AGEs/RAGE/NF-κB p65 pathway. This study enables us to further understand the key role that the AGEs/RAGE/NF-κB pathway plays in the pathogenesis of diabetic encephalopathy, and confirms that GSPE might be a therapeutical means to the prevention and treatment of this disorder.
In an earlier study, we have observed an increase of alpha-tocopherol in breast cancer patients treated with third-generation aromatase inhibitors that was related to tamoxifen withdrawal. We report here the results of measurement of alpha-tocopherol in erythrocytes and alpha-tocopherol/cholesterol ratios in patients treated with letrozol. Alpha-tocopherol in lipoprotein fractions and erythrocytes was determined by high-performance liquid chromatography in 124 post-menopausal women with breast cancer treated with letrozol immediately before the start of treatment as well as 2 and 4 mo later. After a transient decrease after 2 mo of letrozol therapy, erythrocyte alpha-tocopherol concentrations returned to pre-treatment levels 4 mo after the start of treatment. Apart from lower cholesterol in patients pre-treated with tamoxifen, no significant differences were observed at baseline between patients previously treated with tamoxifen and patients who had no prior tamoxifen in any of the other parameters investigated, but the transient decrease of erythrocyte alpha-tocopherol was observed only in patients previously treated with tamoxifen. Alpha-tocopherol content of lipoprotein fractions was significantly increased 4 mo after the start of therapy, but this increase was evident mostly in patients not treated earlier with tamoxifen. In conclusion, only minor changes of alpha-tocopherol, including a transient decrease of alpha-tocopherol in erythrocyte membranes, and an increase of alpha-tocopherol in lipoprotein fractions were observed during the first 4 mo of letrozol therapy.
We hypothesized that, with oral or intestinal administration of amino acids (AA), we may reduce hypothermia during general anesthesia as effectively as with intravenous AA. We, therefore, examined the effect of bolus oral and continuous intestinal AA in preventing hypothermia in rats. Male Wistar rats were anesthetized with sevoflurane for induction and with propofol for maintenance. In the first experiment, 30 min before anesthesia, rats received one bolus 42 mL/kg of AA solution (100 g/L) or saline orally. Then for the next 3 h during anesthesia, they received 14 mL/kg/h of AA and/or saline intravenously. They were in 4 groups: I-A/A, both AA; I-A/S, oral AA and intravenous saline; I-S/A, oral saline and intravenous AA; I-S/S, both saline. In the second experiment, rats received 14 mL/kg/h duodenal AA and/or saline for 2 h. They were in 3 groups: II-A/S, duodenal AA and intravenous saline; II-S/A, duodenal saline and intravenous AA; II-S/S, both saline. Core body temperature was measured rectally. After the second experiment, serum electrolytes were examined. In both experiments, rectal temperature decreased in all groups during anesthesia. However, the decrease in rectal temperature was significantly less in groups receiving AA than in groups receiving only saline. In the second experiment, although there was no significant difference in the decrease in body temperature between II-A/S and II-S/A, Na+ concentration was significantly lower in II-S/A. In conclusion, AA, administered orally or intestinally, tended to keep the body temperature stable during anesthesia without disturbing electrolyte balance. These results suggest that oral or enteral AA may be useful for prevention of hypothermia in patients.
Abdominal adiposity and low cardiorespiratory fitness are assosicated with insulin resistance in people with impaired glucose tolerance and type 2 diabetes. However, little is known about which factor precedes insulin resistance in people with impaired glucose tolerance and type 2 diabetes, and which is the stronger predictor of insulin resistance in non-diabetic people. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between insulin resistance and cardiorespiratory fitness, visceral fat, and subcutaneous fat in non-diabetic people. Subjects included 87 men and 77 women aged 30-72 y (mean±SD, 51.3±12.3 y). Cardiorespiratory fitness was assessed by measuring the maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max) in a progressive continuous test to exhaustion on a cycle ergometer. The visceral and subcutaneous fat areas were measured by magnetic resonance imaging. The homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-R) was calculated from the fasting concentrations of glucose and insulin. Stepwise multiple linear regression analysis revealed that visceral and subcutaneous fat were significant correlates of HOMA-R, explaining 24% and 6% of the variance, respectively, whereas sex, age, and VO2max were not significant independent determinants. Abdominal fat deposition rather than cardiorespiratory fitness is a significant predictor of insulin resistance in non-diabetic people; visceral fat is the most important factor.
An infusion of amino acids stimulates heat production in skeletal muscle and then attenuates the anesthesia-induced hypothermia. However, in a clinical setting, some patients have atrophic skeletal muscle caused by various factors. The present study was therefore conducted to investigate the effect of amino acids on the anesthesia-induced hypothermia in the state of muscle atrophy. As the muscle atrophy model, Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to hindlimb immobilization for 2 wk. Normal rats and atrophy model rats were randomly assigned to one of the two treatment groups: saline or amino acids (n=8 for each group). Test solutions were administered intravenously to the rats under sevoflurane anesthesia for 180 min, and the rectal temperature was measured. Plasma samples were collected for measurement of insulin, blood glucose, and free amino acids. The rectal temperature was significantly higher in the normal-amino acid group than in the muscle atrophy-amino acid group from 75 to 180 min. The plasma insulin level was significantly higher in the rats given amino acids than in the rats given saline in both normal and model groups. In the rats given amino acids, plasma total free amino acid concentration was higher in the model group than in the normal group. These results indicate that skeletal muscle plays an important role in changes in body temperature during anesthesia and the effect of amino acids on anesthesia-induced hypothermia decreases in the muscle atrophy state. In addition, intravenous amino acids administration during anesthesia induces an increase in the plasma insulin level.
According to recent genome-wide association studies, a number of single nucleotide polymorphisms is reported to be associated with diseases or several clinical markers. Among them, adiponectin (ADIPOQ) and perilipin (PLIN) polymorphisms are major factors of obesity. However, the association between lifestyle factor, these polymorphisms and obesity-related clinical markers in Japanese is not well researched. Therefore, the aim of present study is to investigate the association between lifestyle factor, polymorphisms of lipid metabolic genes, and clinical markers in 148 middle-aged Japanese males. The study revealed that ADIPOQ 45 T>G and ADIPOQ 276 G>T genotypes were significantly associated with triglyceride, total cholesterol, hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) in blood and body mass index (BMI). PLIN4 11482 G>A and hormone sensitive lipase (LIPE)-60 C>G genotypes were respectively associated with BMI and serum triglyceride. Not only genetic factors but also lifestyle factors influence several clinical markers. The BMI of subjects who like sweets and have the GG allele in ADIPOQ 276 G>T was higher than that of subjects who don't like sweets. The habit of eating fruits and fish affected low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol of the GT allele and HbA1c of the TT allele in ADIPOQ 276 G>T. Those findings indicate improvement and conservation of lifestyle depending on genetic predisposition in ADIPOQ, PLIN and LIPE should be encouraged.
Objectives: Using a dietary pattern analysis method could provide more information about the nutritional etiology of chronic diseases such as obesity. The aim of this study is to determine the association between major dietary patterns and general and central obesity among adult women living in Tehran. Materials and methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in Tehran, Iran, with 460 women aged 20-50 y. Dietary intake in the previous year was collected by a semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire. Weight, height and waist circumstance (WC) were measured with standard methods and body mass index (BMI) was calculated. General obesity was defined as BMI≥30 kg/m2 and central obesity as WC≥88 cm. Factor analysis was used for identifying major dietary patterns. The association between major dietary patterns and general and central obesity were assessed by logistic regression analysis. Results: Two major dietary patterns were extracted: “Healthy” and “Unhealthy” dietary patterns. After adjusting for confounders, individuals in the highest quartile of the unhealthy dietary pattern score were more likely to have general (OR=7.33, 95% CI: 2.39-22.51) and central obesity (OR=4.99, 95% CI: 2.08-11.94), whereas, those in the upper quartile of healthy dietary pattern were less likely to have general (OR=0.38, 95% CI: 0.15-0.98) or central obesity (OR=0.33, 95% CI: 0.16-0.71). Conclusion: Our data suggest that a dietary pattern rich in fruit, vegetables, low-fat dairy products and poultry might be negatively associated with obesity. Furthermore our data showed that a dietary pattern high in processed meats, soft drinks, sweets, refined grains, snacks and processed juice might be positively associated with obesity among women aged 20-50 y.
Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is known to be a compound with mitochondrial bioenergetic functions and antioxidant activity. In this study, we evaluated the effect of CoQ10 on the formation of aberrant crypt foci (ACF) induced by 1,2-dimethylhydrazine (DMH), DMH-induced leukocytic DNA damage and gene expression of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) by real-time PCR in colonic mucosa of male SD rats. The animals were divided into three groups and fed a casein-based high-fat and low fiber diet (100 g lard+20 g cellulose/kg diet) with or without CoQ10 (0.4 mg in soybean oil/kg BW/d, i.p.). One week after beginning the diets, the rats were subjected to 6 wk of treatment with DMH (30 mg/kg/wk, s.c.) and CoQ10 treatments continued over the entirety of the experimental period (59 d). Administration of CoQ10 resulted in reduction of ACF numbers, to 20% of the carcinogen control value. CoQ10 supplementation induced an antigenotoxic effect on DMH-induced DNA damage in the blood cells. Colonic mucosa of DMH-injected rats had significantly greater COX-2 and iNOS gene expression than those of control rats, while treatment with CoQ10 induced an inhibitory effect on over-expression of COX-2 and iNOS in colon tumors. Our results provide evidence that CoQ10 has a protective effect on the process of colon carcinogenesis, suppressing the development of preneoplastic lesions, possibly by modulating COX-2 and iNOS gene expression in colonic mucosa and DNA damage in leukocytes, suggesting that CoQ10 has chemotherapeutic activity.
We examined the immunomodulatory effect of Eriobotrya japonica seed extract (ESE) on rat allergic dermatitis elicited by repeated dinitrofluorobenzene (DNFB) application on the ear. Oral administration of ESE significantly inhibited development of allergic dermatitis based on lower ear thickness and serum immunoglobulin E (IgE) levels. Th1 cytokine interferon-γ (IFN-γ) and interleukin-2 (IL-2), Th2 cytokine interleukin-4 (IL-4) and interleukin-10 (IL-10) in the lesional skin were determined. Oral administration of ESE significantly decreased IL-4 while significantly increasing IL-10 in lesional skin, and the lower levels of IFN-γ and IL-2 were reversed by oral administration of ESE. The infiltration of eosinophils in the lesional skin was decreased by oral administration of ESE. These results suggested that ESE exerts anti-allergic actions by improving the balance of Th1/Th2 in allergic dermatitis.
Houttuynia cordata Thunb. is used in folk medicine for diuresis and detoxification. However, it has not yet been reported to have an anti-obesity effect. We found that the water extract of H. cordata leaves (WEH) inhibited the corn oil-induced increase in plasma triglyceride levels in mice. WEH also inhibited the oleic acid- and glycerol-induced increase in the levels of plasma nonesterified fatty acids and glycerol, respectively. Moreover, WEH had anti-obesity effects in mice with high-fat-diet-induced obesity. Therefore, WEH may be able to prevent or reduce obesity induced by a high-fat diet.