By using a complex of DNA, polyethylenimine and chondroitin sulfate, the in vivo transfection of early secretory antigenic target-6 (ESAT-6) gene into tumor cells was found to cause significant suppression of the tumor growth. In order to apply the method in clinical cancer treatment in dogs and cats, mechanisms underlying the suppressive effects were investigated in a tumor-bearing mouse model. The transfection efficiency was only about 10%, but the transfection of ESAT-6 DNA nevertheless induced systemic immune responses against ESAT-6. By triple injection of ESAT-6 DNA at three day intervals, the tumor was significantly reduced and almost disappeared by 5 days after the start of treatment, and did not increase for more than 15 days after the final treatment. In the immunohistochemistry, a larger number of dendritic cells (DCs)/macrophages expressing ionized calcium-binding adapter molecule 1 and CD3+ T cells was observed in tumors treated with ESAT-6 DNA, and their population further increased significantly by day 5. Moreover, the amount of tumor necrosis factor, which is an apoptosis-inducing factor produced mainly by DCs/macrophages, was greater in the ESAT-6 DNA treated tumors than in controls, and increased with repeat of the treatment. These results indicate that in vivo transfection of ESAT-6 DNA into tumor cells elicits significant inhibition of tumor growth by inducing potent activity of innate immunity mediated by DCs/macrophages, which may be followed by adaptive immunity against tumor associated antigens, elicited by the costimulation with ESAT-6 antigen.
pH-Sensitive fusogenic polymer-modified (pH-sensitive) liposomes co-loaded with tumor model antigen, ovalbumin (OVA), and adjuvant, α-galactosylceramide (α-GalCer) were fabricated and administered subcutaneously into mice. The ability of pH-sensitive liposomes containing OVA and α-GalCer to stimulate cellular and humoral immune responses in vivo was compared with OVA-encapsulating pH-sensitive liposomes as well as with OVA alone. After immunization, significant OVA-specific antibodies were detected in the serum. When sera were analyzed for isotype distribution, antigen-specific IgG1 antibody responses were noted in mice immunized with OVA alone, whereas immunization with OVA-containing pH-sensitive liposomes and with pH-sensitive liposomes containing OVA and α-GalCer resulted in the induction of OVA-specific IgG1 and IgG2b antibody responses. Moreover, more substantial production of IFN-γ and IL-4 was demonstrated in spleen cells from mice immunized with pH-sensitive liposomes having OVA and α-GalCer than OVA-containing pH-sensitive liposomes in vitro. Spleen cells from the immunized mice showed strong cytotoxic activity against E.G7-OVA tumor cells. In addition, prophylactic vaccination efficacy against tumor formation was evaluated. In all mice immunized with pH-sensitive liposomes having OVA and α-GalCer, immunization provided substantial protection from tumor formation. The therapeutic efficacy of pH-sensitive liposomes containing OVA and α-GalCer against already established E.G7-OVA tumors was also investigated. Tumor growth was reduced significantly in all mice treated with pH-sensitive liposomes having OVA and α-GalCer. The provided evidence on the advantage of antigen and α-GalCer co-encapsulation into pH-sensitive liposomes should be considered in the design of future cancer vaccines for prophylactic and therapeutic purposes.
Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) is primary pathogenic bacteria of piglet diarrhea, over two thirds of piglets diarrhea caused by ETEC are resulted from STa-producing ETEC strains. This experiment was conducted to construct the recombinant E. coli expressing STa and study the injury and mechanism of recombinant E. coli expressing STa on 7 days old piglets colon. Twenty-four 7 days old piglets were allotted to four treatments: control group, STa group (2 × 109 CFU E. coli LMG194-STa), LMG194 group (2 × 109 CFU E. coli LMG194) and K88 group (2 × 109 CFU E. coli K88). The result showed that E. coli infection significantly increased diarrhea rates; changed DAO activity in plasma and colon; damaged colonic mucosal morphology including crypt depth, number of globet cells, density of lymphocytes and lamina propria cell density; substantially reduced antioxidant capacity by altering activities of GSH-Px, SOD, and TNOS and productions of MDA and H2O2; obviously decreased AQP3, AQP4 and KCNJ13 protein expression levels; substantially altered the gene expression levels of inflammatory cytokines. Conclusively, STa group had the biggest effect on these indices in four treatment groups. These results suggested that the recombinant strain expressed STa can induce piglets diarrhea and colonic morphological and funtional damage by altering expression of proteins connect to transportation function and genes associated with intestinal injury and inflammatory cytokines.
Canine hemangiosarcoma (HSA) is one of the most common mesenchymal tumors in dogs. Its high metastatic and growth rates are usually associated with poor prognosis. Neoplastic cells of HSA can show various levels of cellular atypia in the same mass and may consist of various populations at different differentiated stages. Up to present, however, there is no report analyzing their differentiation states by comparing cellular atypia with differentiation-related protein expressions. To evaluate whether cellular atypia can be used as a differentiation marker in HSA, we analyzed correlation between cellular atypia and intensities of CD31 and von Willebrand Factor (vWF) staining in HSA cases. We also compared cellular atypia and expression levels of CD31 and vWF in each growth patterns. Our results show that cellular atypia was negatively correlated to CD31 and vWF expression levels but no significant correlation was found between growth patterns and cellular atypia or CD31 and vWF expression levels. Our study suggests that cellular atypia is useful for identifying differentiation levels in HSA cases. This study also provides useful information to determine differentiation levels of cell populations within HSA based only on morphological analysis, which will aid further HSA research such as identifying undifferentiation markers of endothelial cells or finding undifferentiated cell population in tissue sections.
Angiotensin II (100 nM) induced bi-phasic increases in cytosolic Ca2+ level ([Ca2+]i) through the activation of angiotensin II type 1 receptor. Pharmacological examinations using 10 µM verapamil, 30 µM La3+, and 1 µM thapsigargin indicated that the first phase of the [Ca2+]i-increase was mediated by Ca2+ release from sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) and Ca2+ influx independently of voltage dependent Ca2+ channel (VDC). In contrast, the second phase of [Ca2+]i-increase was mediated by Ca2+ influx through VDC. Although both [Ca2+]i and myosin light chain (MLC)-phosphorylation at the first phase was apparently exceeded the threshold for contraction as estimated by high K+-induced responses, there was no appreciable contraction, indicating the dissociation between MLC phosphorylation and force during this phase. In contrast, the second phase of [Ca2+]i was associated with the increases in both MLC phosphorylation and force. These results suggest that angiotensin II is a unique agonist which dissociates MLC-phosphorylation from muscle force during the Ca2+ releases from SR.
Pectenotoxin-2 (PCTX-2) is one of the polyether macrolide toxins isolated from scallops involved in diarrheic shellfish poisoning via actin depolymerization. In the present study, we examined the bioactive mechanism of PCTX-2 in smooth muscle cells and clarify mode of action of the PCTX-2-induced actin depolymerization using purified skeletal actin. PCTX-2 (300 nM-3 µM) non-selectively inhibited vascular smooth muscle contractions elicited by high K+ or phenylephrine in a dose-dependent manner. However, elevated cytosolic Ca2+ and myosin light chain phosphorylation stimulated by high K+ were only slightly inhibited by PCTX-2. By monitoring the fluorescent intensity of pyrenyl-actin, PCTX-2 was found to inhibit both the velocity and degree of actin polymerization. The critical concentration of G-actin was linearly increased in accordance with the concentration of PCTX-2, indicating sequestration of G-actin with 1 to 1 ratio. The kinetics of F-actin depolymerization by dilution assay indicated that PCTX-2 does not sever F-actin. Transmission electron microscopic and confocal microscopic observations demonstrated that PCTX-2 selectively depolymerized filamentous actin without affecting tublin. In conclusion, PCTX-2 is a potent natural actin depolymerizer which sequesters G-actin without severing F-actin.
The growth of offspring is affected not only by the protein in maternal milk but also by the free amino acids (FAAs) contained in it. L-Serine (L-Ser) is known as an important FAA for the development of the central nervous system and behavioral activity. However, it is not clear whether L-Ser is transported into the pool of FAAs contained in milk and thereby affects the growth of offspring. Using mice, the current study investigated the effects of dietary L-Ser during pregnancy and lactation on milk and plasma FAA composition, as well as on growth, behavior, and plasma FAAs of offspring. Dietary L-Ser did not significantly affect the maternal, anxiety-like, or cognitive behaviors of either the dam or the offspring. The FAA composition notably differed between plasma and milk in dams. In milk, dietary L-Ser increased free L-Ser levels, while glutamic acid, L-alanine, D-alanine and taurine levels were decreased. The body weight of the offspring was lowered by dietary L-Ser. The concentrations of plasma FAAs in 13-day-old offspring (fed only milk) were not altered, but 20-day-old offspring (fed both milk and parental diet) showed higher plasma L-Ser and D-Ser concentrations as a result of the dietary L-Ser treatment. In conclusion, the present study found that dietary L-Ser transported easily from maternal plasma to milk and that dietary L-Ser treatment could change the FAA composition of milk, but that an enhanced level of L-Ser in milk did not enhance the plasma L-Ser level in the offspring.
The aim of this study was to determine the blood ionized calcium (Ca) levels and acute-phase blood glucose kinetics in goats with mastitis induced by an intramammary challenge of lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Five goats were subjected to intramammary challenge of either LPS (10 µg) or saline (control). Some clinical manifestations (rectal temperature, pulse rate, respiration rate, ruminal motility, physical activity, and dehydration) were observed, and blood was collected for the measurement of several parameters [ionized and total Ca levels, blood glucose level, pH, and white blood count (WBC)] at 0 (just before challenge), 1–4, 6, 8, 12 and 24 hr post-challenge in both the LPS and control phases. Milk was collected at 0 (just before challenge), 4, 8, 12 and 24 hr post-challenge to measure the somatic cell count (SCC) and N-acetyl-beta-D-glucosaminidase (NAGase) activity. In the LPS phase, increased rectal temperature, significantly decreased ionized Ca and total Ca levels and WBCs were observed compared with those at 0 hr, although there were no differences in all parameters between phases. LPS infusion significantly increased SCCs in milk and NAGase activity. The present results demonstrated that, during the acute phase of mastitis induced by intramammary challenge by LPS at a concentration sufficient to cause general symptoms in goats, a decreased blood ionized Ca level occurs, but not hypoglycemia.
Okayama University-type retinal prosthesis (OURePTM) is a photoelectric dye-coupled polyethylene film which generates electric potential in response to light and stimulates nearby neurons. This study aims to test surgical feasibility for subretinal film implantation and to examine functional durability of films in subretinal space. Dye-coupled films were implanted subretinally by vitrectomy in the right eye of normal white rabbits: 8 rabbits for 1 month and 8 rabbits for 6 months. The implanted films were removed by vitrectomy in 4 of these 8 rabbits in 1-month or 6-month implantation group. The films were also implanted in 4 rhodopsin-transgenic retinal dystrophic rabbits. Visual evoked potential was measured before film implantation as well as 1 or 6 months after film implantation, or 1 month after film removal. The films were successfully implanted in subretinal space of retinal detachment induced by subretinal fluid injection with a 38G polyimide tip. The retina was reattached by fluid-air exchange in vitreous cavity, retinal laser coagulation, and silicone oil injection. The ratios of P2 amplitudes of visual evoked potential in the implanted right eye over control left eye did not show significant changes between pre-implantation and post-implantation or post-removal (paired t-test). In Kelvin probe measurements, 4 pieces each of removed films which were implanted for 1 or 6 months showed proportional increase of surface electric potential in response to increasing light intensity. The film implantation was safe and implanted films were capable of responding to light.
We previously reported that the tadpole of bullfrog (Lithobates catesbeiana) is a useful model for the field surveillance of the Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) distribution. In the present study, we compared Bd detection rates in swab-scraped and resected mouthpart samples, using nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The resulting detection rates for swab-scraped and resected specimens were 67 and 65%, respectively, with no significant difference. Furthermore, we performed a histopathological examination for Bd distribution in the mouthparts; we found that Bd infection occurred in the tip and basement of the jaw sheaths and tooth rows. We recommend using swab-scraped samples for Bd detection. Moreover, careful attention should be paid to scraping the tip and basement of the jaw sheaths and the entire oral cavity to reduce the rates of false-negative results on nested PCR of the mouthparts of bullfrog tadpoles.