A randomized, double-blind human trial was conducted to assess the effect of 4- or 12-week astaxanthin supplementation (1 or 3 mg/day) on the carotenoid compositions of erythrocytes in Japanese middle-aged and senior subjects. Erythrocyte astaxanthin concentrations after 4- or 12-weeks of supplementation (3 mg/day) was significantly higher than after placebo or 1 mg astaxanthin supplementations. No differences were observed in either the carotenoid compositions or the phospholipid hydroperoxide concentrations in erythrocytes after astaxanthin intake in both the 1 and 3 mg/day groups.
This is the first report on the sterol composition in Nipponacmea concinna and Nipponacmea fuscoviridis, 2 dominant species of lottiid limpets. There were significant differences in sterol composition between male and female gonads of the limpets. Previous studies have shown that zymostenol and zymosterol are major lipid components of male gonads of the nacellid limpets Cellana grata and Cellana toreuma. In contrast, in this study, only trace amounts of zymosterol were detected in male gonads of N. fuscoviridis.
A method for calculating the amount of colored soil on a flat metal surface from digital image data was examined. Round samples cut out of SUS tape were soiled with oily soil mixed with sudan III, placed in sample bottles, and washed using a tube rotator. Images of the samples before and after the washing process were captured using a CCD camera and the image data were processed by a computer. The shine from the metallic surface was controlled by using indirect lighting. It was necessary to diminish the effect of the substrate’s color, and to this end, we attempted to apply linear and non-linear color correction procedures. We found that the use of gamma correction after linear correction to remove the effect of the metal surface color was the most accurate quantitative method. Additionally, we conducted a washing test with commercial detergents using this quantitative method for image data and found that the removal process for the greasy soil from the metal surface could be expressed as a first-order reaction.
It has been demonstrated that differential conductivity, dκ/dC, is useful for experimentally extracting the contribution of micellar aggregates from the conductivity data of an ionic surfactant solution in which aggregates and monomers coexist. This extraction allows us to treat the micellization process using a simple two-state model (nS→M) instead of the general mass action model of micellization (nS+qG→M). As a result, the three parameters of micellization, i.e., aggregation number (n), micellization constant, and ionization degree (α) of micelles, for homologous double-chain surfactants and bile salt derivatives can be determined. It was found that when the side-chain was long enough, the double-chain surfactants examined formed highly ionized (α=0.6-0.9) and small (ca. n=20) aggregates, regarded as premicelles.
The present study describes the effect of Peucedanum japonicum Thunb (PJT) intake on the expression of obesity-related genes in mice fed a high-fat diet. To explore the mechanism underlying the effect of PJT, This study focused on the expression of genes, especially those related to obesity and metabolism syndrome, in the liver and adipose tissues. In agreement with our previous observations, intake of 10 % PJT for 4 weeks significantly reduced serum triglyceride (TG), leptin, abdominal fat, and adipocyte size. PJT also significantly increased fecal excretion of TG, decreased that of bile acid, and tended to increase the fecal excretion of total cholesterol. Microarray analysis was used to monitor changes in 324 metabolic syndrome-related genes in the liver. Statistically significant upregulation of PPP1R10, RORC, and PBEF1 genes and downregulation of DUSP1, INSIG2, and SERPINA12 genes were noted and confirmed by real-time RT-PCR. These changes were indicative of increased fatty acid oxidation in the maintenance of lipid homeostasis and insulin sensitivity in the livers of PJT-fed mice. PJT increased the expression of PPARγ, FXRα, DGAT1, and ATGL genes, suggesting an enhancement of adipocyte differentiation and normalization of functionality of adipose tissue.
Gangliosides are sialic acid-containing glycosphingolipids that are most abundant in the nervous system. Heterogeneity and diversity of the structures in their carbohydrate chains are characteristic hallmarks of these lipids; so far, 188 gangliosides with different carbohydrate structures have been identified in vertebrates. The molecular structural complexity increases manifold if one considers heterogeneity in the lipophilic components. The expression levels and patterns of brain gangliosides are known to change drastically during development. In cells, gangliosides are primarily, but not exclusively, localized in the outer leaflets of plasma membranes and are integral components of cell surface microdomains with sphingomyelin and cholesterol from which they participate in cell-cell recognition, adhesion, and signal transduction. In this brief review, we discuss the structures, metabolism and functions of gangliosides.
In a previous in vitro study, (-)-camphor (1) was examined by incubation with human liver microsomes, and the oxidative metabolites thus formed were analyzed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. However, thus far, no large-scale biotransformation using recombinant human P450 has been performed. Here, the biotransformation of compound 1 has been investigated by using Salmonella typhimurium OY1002/2A6 expressing human CYP2A6 and human NADPH-P450 reductase as a biocatalyst. Compound 1 (400 mg) was converted to (1S,5S)-(-)-5-exo-hydroxycamphor (2) (30.4 mg) and (1S,7S)-(-)-8-hydroxycamphor (3) (2.4 mg) by S. typhimurium OY1002/2A6. This is the first report to show that large quantities of metabolites 2 and 3 can be produced by S. typhimurium OY1002/2A6 expressing human CYP2A6 and NADPH-P450 reductase.