Background: The mechanical transmission of pathogenic bacteria by synanthropic filth flies is widely recognized. While many studies report the fate and the temporospatial distribution of ingested foodborne bacteria by filth flies, there is little evidence about the transmission dynamics of ingested foodborne bacteria by adult house flies (Musca domestica) to their progeny. In this study, we fed parental house fly adults with food contaminated with low, medium, and high concentrations of Salmonella enterica, Cronobacter sakazakii, Escherichia coli O157:H7, and Listeria monocytogenes and evaluated the probability of transmission of these pathogens to house fly eggs and the surface and the alimentary canal of their first filial (F 1 ) generation adults. Results: All foodborne pathogens were present in samples containing pooled house fly eggs. The probability of transmission was higher after parental house flies ingested food containing medium bacterial loads. Cronobacter sakazakii was 16, 6, and 3 times more likely to be transmitted to house fly eggs than S. enterica, E. coli O157:H7, and L. monocytogenes, respectively. Only S. enterica and C. sakazakii were transmitted to F 1 generation adults and their presence was 2.4 times more likely on their body surfaces than in their alimentary canals. The highest probabilities of finding S. enterica (60 %) and C. sakazakii (28 %) on newly emerged F 1 adults were observed after parental house flies ingested food containing medium and high levels of these pathogens, respectively. Conclusion: Our study demonstrates that adult house flies that fed from food contaminated with various levels of foodborne bacteria were able to transmit those pathogens to their eggs and some were further transmitted to newly emerged F 1 generation adults, enhancing the vector potential of these insects. Understanding the type of associations that synanthropic filth flies establish with foodborne pathogens will help to elucidate transmission mechanisms and possible ways to mitigate the spread of foodborne pathogens.
Background: Functional metagenomic selections represent a powerful technique that is widely applied for identification of novel genes from complex metagenomic sources. However, whereas hundreds to thousands of clones can be easily generated and sequenced over a few days of experiments, analyzing the data is time consuming and constitutes a major bottleneck for experimental researchers in the field.FindingsHere we present the deFUME web server, an easy-to-use web-based interface for processing, annotation and visualization of functional metagenomics sequencing data, tailored to meet the requirements of non-bioinformaticians. The web-server integrates multiple analysis steps into one single workflow: read assembly, open reading frame prediction, and annotation with BLAST, InterPro and GO classifiers. Analysis results are visualized in an online dynamic web-interface. Conclusion: The deFUME webserver provides a fast track from raw sequence to a comprehensive visual data overview that facilitates effortless inspection of gene function, clustering and distribution. The webserver is available at cbs.dtu.dk/services/deFUME/and the source code is distributed at github.com/EvdH0/deFUME.
Background: Causal relationships have been previously established between smoking and various cancers. In Cyprus, 39 % of men and 14 % of women reported daily smoking in 2008. The objective of this study was to compare the incidence of tobacco-related cancers to all other cancers by district and rural–urban classification to understand the impact of tobacco in Cyprus. Methods: Data on lung, urinary bladder, oral, pharyngeal, head/neck, and laryngeal cancers were obtained from the Cyprus Cancer Registry (1998–2008). There were 3,635 patients with tobacco-related cancers and 18,780 with non-tobacco cancers. Univariate analysis comparing tobacco-related cancers and all other cancers were conducted with regards to age at diagnosis, age groups, sex, smoking status, disease stage, and rural/urban status, with a p-value of 0.05 considered significant. Smoking prevalence, lung cancer, and bladder cancer rates of Cyprus were also compared to a number of other European countries. Results: Patients with tobacco-related cancers were older than those with non-tobacco cancers (mean age 67.2 ± 12.4 vs. 62.4 ± 17.1, p < 0.0001). Among those with tobacco-related cancers, 80.1 % were male compared to 45.4 % males with other cancer types. The proportion of ever smokers was higher among males compared to females in urban and rural districts. Sub-districts 41 (Age Adjusted Rate (AAR) 41.9, 95 % CI: 35.7-48.1), 60 (AAR 40.3, 95 % CI: 35.2-45.3), and 50 (AAR 36.3, 95 % CI: 33.8-38.7) had the highest rates of tobacco-related cancers. The overall tobacco-related cancer rate was the highest among males in urban districts (AAR 60.8, 95 % CI: 58.2-63.5). Among tobacco-related cancers, lung cancer had the highest overall AAR (17.9 per 100,000) while head and neck cancer had the lowest overall AAR (5.3 per 100,000). Additionally, even though Cypriot males aged 65–69 years old exhibited higher smoking prevalence than other European countries, the overall lung and bladder cancer rates were lower in Cyprus. Conclusion: Despite the high proportion of smokers in Cyprus, cancer rates are low compared to other countries. Future in-depth measurements of relevant risk factors and smoking exposure can help understand this phenomenon and provide insights for cancer prevention.
Background: The mammary glands of pigs share many functional and morphological similarities with the breasts of humans, raising the potential of their utility for research into the mechanisms underlying normal mammary function and breast carcinogenesis. Here we sought to establish a model for the efficient manipulation and transformation of porcine mammary epithelial cells (pMEC) in vitro and tumor growth in vivo. Methods: We utilized a vector encoding the red florescent protein tdTomato to transduce populations of pMEC from Yorkshire –Hampshire crossbred female pigs in vitro and in vivo. Populations of primary pMEC were then separated by FACS using markers to distinguish epithelial cells (CD140a-) from stromal cells (CD140a+), with or without further enrichment for basal and luminal progenitor cells (CD49f+). These separated pMEC populations were transduced by lentivirus encoding murine polyomavirus T antigens (Tag) and tdTomato and engrafted to orthotopic or ectopic sites in immunodeficient NOD.Cg-Prkdc scid Il2rg tm1Wjl /SzJ (NSG) mice. Results: We demonstrated that lentivirus effectively transduces pMEC in vitro and in vivo. We further established that lentivirus can be used for oncogenic-transformation of pMEC ex vivo for generating mammary tumors in vivo. Oncogenic transformation was confirmed in vitro by anchorage-independent growth, increased cell proliferation, and expression of CDKN2A, cyclin A2 and p53 alongside decreased phosphorylation of Rb. Moreover, Tag-transformed CD140a- and CD140a-CD49f + pMECs developed site-specific tumors of differing histopathologies in vivo. Conclusions: Herein we establish a model for the transduction and oncogenic transformation of pMEC. This is the first report describing a porcine model of mammary epithelial cell tumorigenesis that can be applied to the study of human breast cancers.
Background: Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a multifactorial disease with a complex pathophysiology. The clinical features of NAFLD include obesity, insulin resistance (IR) and dyslipidemia. Consumption of a diet high in saturated fats and sucrose is an important factor in the increasing occurrence of these metabolic disorders, primarily NAFLD and IR. We sought to assess the role of a high-fat, high-sucrose (HFS) diet in the promotion of NAFLD and to evaluate the effects of quercetin (Q), berberine (BB) and o-coumaric acid (CA) on modulation of these disorders. Methods: Fifty male rats were divided into 2 main groups as follows: group 1 comprised 10 rats fed a standard diet (SD), and group 2 comprised 40 rats fed an HFS diet for 6 weeks and then subdivided equally into 4 groups; one of these groups served as the HFS diet and each of the other three groups received daily supplementation with either Q, CA or BB for 6 weeks. Results: In the present study, several metabolic disorders were induced in our laboratory animal model, as evidenced by histological and biochemical changes. These alterations included serum and hepatic dyslipidemia (i.e., increased triglyceride, total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein levels and decreased high-density lipoprotein levels), alterations in metabolic enzyme activities (lipase, glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, and glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase), histological changes in the liver (micro- and macrovesicular steatosis) and the downregulation of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ) in adipose tissue and the liver. Daily oral supplementation with Q, CA or BB for 6 weeks after NAFLD induction had a hypolipidemic action and modulated metabolic markers. Conclusion: We showed that an HFS diet is able to promote NAFLD, and our results suggest that CA and BB are promising complementary supplements that can ameliorate the metabolic disorders associated with an HFS diet; however, Q requires further investigation.
Background: In the post-genomic era where sequences are being determined at a rapid rate, we are highly reliant on computational methods for their tentative biochemical characterization. The Pfam database currently contains 3,786 families corresponding to “Domains of Unknown Function” (DUF) or “Uncharacterized Protein Family” (UPF), of which 3,087 families have no reported three-dimensional structure, constituting almost one-fourth of the known protein families in search for both structure and function. Results: We applied a ‘computational structural genomics’ approach using five state-of-the-art remote similarity detection methods to detect the relationship between uncharacterized DUFs and domain families of known structures. The association with a structural domain family could serve as a start point in elucidating the function of a DUF. Amongst these five methods, searches in SCOP-NrichD database have been applied for the first time. Predictions were classified into high, medium and low- confidence based on the consensus of results from various approaches and also annotated with enzyme and Gene ontology terms. 614 uncharacterized DUFs could be associated with a known structural domain, of which high confidence predictions, involving at least four methods, were made for 54 families. These structure-function relationships for the 614 DUF families can be accessed on-line at http://proline.biochem.iisc.ernet.in/RHD_DUFS/. For potential enzymes in this set, we assessed their compatibility with the associated fold and performed detailed structural and functional annotation by examining alignments and extent of conservation of functional residues. Detailed discussion is provided for interesting assignments for DUF3050, DUF1636, DUF1572, DUF2092 and DUF659. Conclusions: This study provides insights into the structure and potential function for nearly 20 % of the DUFs. Use of different computational approaches enables us to reliably recognize distant relationships, especially when they converge to a common assignment because the methods are often complementary. We observe that while pointers to the structural domain can offer the right clues to the function of a protein, recognition of its precise functional role is still ‘non-trivial’ with many DUF domains conserving only some of the critical residues. It is not clear whether these are functional vestiges or instances involving alternate substrates and interacting partners.ReviewersThis article was reviewed by Drs Eugene Koonin, Frank Eisenhaber and Srikrishna Subramanian.
Background: A large number of studies are attempting to identify alternative products from natural sources or synthesized compounds that effectively interact with cancer cells without causing adverse effects on healthy cells. Resorcinolic lipids are a class of bioactive compounds that possess anticancer activity and are able to interact with the lipid bilayer. Therefore, the objective of this study was to synthesize a novel resorcinolic lipid and test its biological proprieties. Methods: We aimed to synthesize a novel resorcinolic lipid belonging to the class of cytosporones, AMS049 (3-Heptyl-4,6-dihydroxy-3H-isobenzofuran-1-one) and to evaluate the toxicity of two concentrations of this lipid (7.5 and 10 mg/kg) by determining its genotoxic, mutagenic, immunomodulatory, and apoptotic effects, as well as any biochemical and histopathological alterations in mice treated with cyclophosphamide. The results were analyzed by ANOVA followed by the Tukey test A . level of significance of p < 0.05 was adopted. Results: The new cytosporone AMS049 was synthesized in only three steps and in satisfactory yields. The results indicate that the compound is neither genotoxic nor mutagenic and does not alter biochemical parameters. The histological alterations observed in the liver and kidneys did not compromise the function of these organs. Histology of the spleen suggested immunomodulation, although no changes were observed in splenic phagocytosis or differential blood cell count. The results also show that AMS049 potentiates the mutagenic effect of the chemotherapy drug cyclophosphamide and that the combination induces apoptosis. Conclusion: These facts indicate a potential therapeutic application of this novel cytosporone as an important chemotherapeutic adjuvant.
Background: The optimal timing of catheter removal following laparoscopic radical prostatectomy (LRP) has not yet been determined. This prospective study was designed to compare the efficacy and safety of catheter removal on postoperative day (POD) 2 versus POD 4 after LRP and its impact on urinary continence outcomes. Methods: One hundred and thirteen patients underwent LRP and were prospectively randomized into two groups: group 1 (n = 57) had the urinary catheter removed on POD 2 while group 2 (n = 56) had the catheter removed on POD 4. The urine loss ratio (ULR) was defined as the weight of urine loss in the pad divided by the daily micturition volume. Continence was defined as a pad-free status. Results: No significant differences were observed in clinical features between groups 1 and 2. Acute urinary retention (AUR) after catheter removal occurred in 21 patients (18.6 %) (13 (22.8 %) in group 1 and 8 (14.3 %) in group 2 (p = 0.244). The first-day mean ULR values were 1.16 ± 4.95 in group 1 and 1.02 ± 3.27 in group 2 (p = 0.870). The last-day mean ULR values were 0.57 ± 1.60 in group 1 and 2.78 ± 15.49 in group 2 (p = 0.353). Continence rates at 3, 6, 9, and 12 months were 21.8, 41.1, 58.0, and 71.4 % in group 1 and 34.5, 66.0, 79.2, and 83.7 % in group 2 (p = 0.138, 0.009, 0.024, and 0.146, respectively). In AUR cases, continence rates at 3, 6, 9, and 12 months were 0, 23.1, 38.5, and 54.5 % in group 1 and 37.5, 75.0, 87.5, and 87.5 % in group 2 (p = 0.017, 0.020, 0.027, and 0.127, respectively). A multivariate analysis identified AUR after catheter removal on POD 2 as the only predictive factor for incontinence 6 and 9 months after LRP (p = 0.030 and 0.018, respectively). Conclusions: Our results demonstrated that early catheter removal on POD 2 after LRP may increase the risk of incontinence.Trial registrationThe study was registered as Clinical trial: (UMIN000014944); registration date: 12 March 2012.
Background: Adenosine A2b receptor (ADORA2B) encodes an adenosine receptor that is a member of the G protein-coupled receptor superfamily. This integral membrane protein stimulates adenylate cyclase activity in the presence of adenosine. Little is known about the relevance of ADORA2B to human malignancy including oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC). We aimed to characterize the expression state and function of ADORA2B in OSCC. Methods: The ADORA2B expression levels in nine OSCC-derived cells were analyzed by quantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction and immunoblotting analyses. Using an ADORA2B knockdown model, we assessed cellular proliferation and expression of hypoxia-inducible factor1α (HIF-1α). We examined the adenosine receptor expression profile under both normoxic and hypoxic conditions in the OSCC-derived cells. In addition to in vitro data, the clinical correlation between the ADORA2B expression levels in primary OSCCs (n = 100 patients) and the clinicopathological status by immunohistochemistry (IHC) also was evaluated. Results: ADORA2B mRNA and protein were up-regulated significantly (p < 0.05) in seven OSCC-derived cells compared with human normal oral keratinocytes. Suppression of ADORA2B expression with shRNA significantly (p < 0.05) inhibited cellular proliferation compared with the control cells. HIF-1α also was down-regulated in ADORA2B knockdown OSCC cells. During hypoxia, ADORA2B expression was induced significantly (p < 0.05) in the mRNA and protein after 24 hours of incubation in OSCC-derived cells. IHC showed that ADORA2B expression in primary OSCCs was significantly (p < 0.05) greater than in the normal oral counterparts and that ADORA2B-positive OSCCs were correlated closely (p < 0.05) with tumoral size. Conclusion: Our results suggested that ADORA2B controls cellular proliferation via HIF-1α activation, indicating that ADORA2B may be a key regulator of tumoral progression in OSCCs.
Background: The power of the randomised controlled trial depends upon its capacity to operate in a closed system whereby the intervention is the only causal force acting upon the experimental group and absent in the control group, permitting a valid assessment of intervention efficacy. Conversely, clinical arenas are open systems where factors relating to context, resources, interpretation and actions of individuals will affect implementation and effectiveness of interventions. Consequently, the comparator (usual care) can be difficult to define and variable in multi-centre trials. Hence outcomes cannot be understood without considering usual care and factors that may affect implementation and impact on the intervention. Methods: Using a fieldwork approach, we describe PICU context, ‘usual’ practice in sedation and weaning from mechanical ventilation, and factors affecting implementation prior to designing a trial involving a sedation and ventilation weaning intervention. We collected data from 23 UK PICUs between June and November 2014 using observation, individual and multi-disciplinary group interviews with staff. Results: Pain and sedation practices were broadly similar in terms of drug usage and assessment tools. Sedation protocols linking assessment to appropriate titration of sedatives and sedation holds were rarely used (9 % and 4 % of PICUs respectively). Ventilator weaning was primarily a medical-led process with 39 % of PICUs engaging senior nurses in the process: weaning protocols were rarely used (9 % of PICUs). Weaning methods were variably based on clinician preference. No formal criteria or use of spontaneous breathing trials were used to test weaning readiness. Seventeen PICUs (74 %) had prior engagement in multi-centre trials, but limited research nurse availability. Barriers to previous trial implementation were intervention complexity, lack of belief in the evidence and inadequate training. Facilitating factors were senior staff buy-in and dedicated research nurse provision. Conclusions: We examined and identified contextual and organisational factors that may impact on the implementation of our intervention. We found usual practice relating to sedation, analgesia and ventilator weaning broadly similar, yet distinctively different from our proposed intervention, providing assurance in our ability to evaluate intervention effects. The data will enable us to develop an implementation plan; considering these factors we can more fully understand their impact on study outcomes.