Now showing items 611-630 of 1270

• #### Identification of fluorescent compounds with non-specific binding property via high throughput live cell microscopy

Introduction: Compounds exhibiting low non-specific intracellular binding or non-stickiness are concomitant with rapid clearing and in high demand for live-cell imaging assays because they allow for intracellular receptor localization with a high signal/noise ratio. The non-stickiness property is particularly important for imaging intracellular receptors due to the equilibria involved. Method: Three mammalian cell lines with diverse genetic backgrounds were used to screen a combinatorial fluorescence library via high throughput live cell microscopy for potential ligands with high in- and out-flux properties. The binding properties of ligands identified from the first screen were subsequently validated on plant root hair. A correlative analysis was then performed between each ligand and its corresponding physiochemical and structural properties. Results: The non-stickiness property of each ligand was quantified as a function of the temporal uptake and retention on a cell-by-cell basis. Our data shows that (i) mammalian systems can serve as a pre-screening tool for complex plant species that are not amenable to high-throughput imaging; (ii) retention and spatial localization of chemical compounds vary within and between each cell line; and (iii) the structural similarities of compounds can infer their non-specific binding properties. Conclusion: We have validated a protocol for identifying chemical compounds with non-specific binding properties that is testable across diverse species. Further analysis reveals an overlap between the non-stickiness property and the structural similarity of compounds. The net result is a more robust screening assay for identifying desirable ligands that can be used to monitor intracellular localization. Several new applications of the screening protocol and results are also presented. © 2012 Nath et al.
• #### Identification of novel microbes associated with pelvic inflammatory disease and infertility

© 2016 Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. Objectives As pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) aetiology is not completely understood, we examined the relationship between select novel bacteria, PID and long-term sequelae. Methods Fastidious bacterial vaginosis (BV)-associated bacteria (Sneathia (Leptotrichia) sanguinegens, Sneathia amnionii, Atopobium vaginae and BV-associated bacteria 1 (BVAB1)), as well as Ureaplasma urealyticum and Ureaplasma parvum were identified in cervical and endometrial specimens using organism-specific PCR assays among 545 women enrolled in the PID Evaluation and Clinical Health study. Risk ratios and 95% CIs were constructed to determine associations between bacteria, histologically confirmed endometritis, recurrent PID and infertility, adjusting for age, race, gonorrhoea and chlamydia. Infertility models were additionally adjusted for baseline infertility. Results Persistent detection of BV-associated bacteria was common (range 58% for A. vaginae to 82% for BVAB1) and elevated the risk for persistent endometritis (RR adj 8.5, 95% CI 1.6 to 44.6) 30 days post-cefoxitin/doxycycline treatment, independent of gonorrhoea and chlamydia. In models adjusted for gonorrhoea and chlamydia, endometrial BV-associated bacteria were associated with recurrent PID (RR adj 4.7, 95% CI 1.7 to 12.8), and women who tested positive in the cervix and/or endometrium were more likely to develop infertility (RR adj 3.4, 95% CI 1.1 to 10.4). Associations between ureaplasmas and PID sequelae were modest. Conclusions To our knowledge, this is the first prospective study to demonstrate that S. sanguinegens, S. amnionii, BVAB1 and A. vaginae are associated with PID, failure of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-recommended treatment to eliminate short-term endometritis, recurrent PID and infertility. Optimal antibiotic regimens for PID may require coverage of novel BV-associated microbes.
• #### Identification of the effector domain of biglycan that facilitates BMP-2 osteogenic function

© 2018 The Author(s). We have reported that recombinant biglycan (BGN) core protein accelerates bone formation in vivo by enhancing bone morphogenetic protein (BMP)-2 function. The purpose of the present study was to identify the specific domain ("effector") within the BGN core protein that facilitates BMP-2 osteogenic function. Thus, we generated various recombinant and synthetic peptides corresponding to several domains of BGN, and tested their effects on BMP-2 functions in vitro. The results demonstrated that the leucine-rich repeats 2-3 domain (LRR2-3) of BGN significantly enhanced the BMP-2 induced Smad1/5/9 phosphorylation, osteogenic gene expression, and alkaline phosphatase activity in myogenic C2C12 cells. Furthermore, addition of LRR2-3 to osteoblastic MC3T3-E1 cells accelerated in vitro mineralization without compromising the quality of the mineral and matrix. These data indicate that LRR2-3 is, at least in part, responsible for BGN's ability to enhance BMP-2 osteogenic function, and it could be useful for bone tissue regeneration.
• #### Identifying spatially similar gene expression patterns in early stage fruit fly embryo images: Binary feature versus invariant moment digital representations

Background: Modern developmental biology relies heavily on the analysis of embryonic gene expression patterns. Investigators manually inspect hundreds or thousands of expression patterns to identify those that are spatially similar and to ultimately infer potential gene interactions. However, the rapid accumulation of gene expression pattern data over the last two decades, facilitated by high-throughput techniques, has produced a need for the development of efficient approaches for direct comparison of images, rather than their textual descriptions, to identify spatially similar expression patterns. Results: The effectiveness of the Binary Feature Vector (BFV) and Invariant Moment Vector (IMV) based digital representations of the gene expression patterns in finding biologically meaningful patterns was compared for a small (226 images) and a large (1819 images) dataset. For each dataset, an ordered list of images, with respect to a query image, was generated to identify overlapping and similar gene expression patterns, in a manner comparable to what a developmental biologist might do. The results showed that the BFV representation consistently outperforms the IMV representation in finding biologically meaningful matches when spatial overlap of the gene expression pattern and the genes involved are considered. Furthermore, we explored the value of conducting image-content based searches in a dataset where individual expression components (or domains) of multi-domain expression patterns were also included separately. We found that this technique improves performance of both IMV and BFV based searches. Conclusions: We conclude that the BFV representation consistently produces a more extensive and better list of biologically useful patterns than the IMV representation. The high quality of results obtained scales well as the search database becomes larger, which encourages efforts to build automated image query and retrieval systems for spatial gene expression patterns. © 2004 Gurunathan et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
• #### Identity lost? The personal impact of brand journalism

Researchers have explored the role of organizational and personal branding in journalism, paying particular attention to digital media and social network sites. While these studies have observed a rise in the incorporation of branding practices among journalists, they have largely avoided questions about the implications such shifts in practice may have on the personal identities of journalists. This study addresses that gap, drawing on interviews with 41 reporters and editors from US newspapers. The findings suggest that as reporters incorporate branding into their routines, they may feel as though they are sacrificing the ability to simultaneously maintain a personal identity online. For their part, editors seem to sympathize with journalists’ loss of personal identity but defer to organizational policies.
• #### Imidazolyl-phenyl (IMP) anions: a modular structure for tuning solubility and coordinating ability

The effect of counteranion upon a cation’s solution-phase reactivity depends on a subtle interplay of weak interactions. Although these effects are widely appreciated in synthesis and catalysis, probing and controlling anion-cation interactions remains a significant challenge. Here we report the synthesis, characterization and reactivity of the IMP anions, a family of anions with a coordinating ability that can be tuned for a given application. The anions are robust, compatible with both strongly basic and acidic media, suitable for isolation of unstable organometallic species, and effective as counteranions for homogeneous catalysis. IMP anions are prepared in two steps: deprotonation of substituted 2-phenylimidazoles with NaH, followed by addition of 2 equiv. B(C6F5)3. The anions prepared feature a range of functionality, including nitro, ester, amide, amine and alcohol groups. Based on the spectroscopic properties of [Pd(IPr)(C(O)C9H6N)] [IMP-R], the coordinating ability of [IMP-R]− ranges between BF4− and BArF4−, depending on the polarity of the R group. Gold complexes of type [L-Au-L’][IMP-R] have been isolated and characterized, resulting in the first X-ray structure of a (eta-2-diphenylacetylene)Au complex. [(tBuXPhos)Au(MeCN)][IMP-R] catalyzes [2+2] cyclization of alkenes and alkynes, as well as the hydroalkoxylation of alkynes. Unlike SbF6− and BArF4−, the [IMP-H]− and [IMP-CF3]− salts are sufficiently soluble to efficiently promote cyclizations in toluene with [(tBuXPhos)Au(MeCN)]+.
• #### Imitations of Insanity and Victorian Medical Aesthetics

The pre-eminent figure in mid-Victorian psychological medicine, Dr. John Conolly had his reputation damaged in the 1850s by scandals linking him to cases of wrongful confinement, including one that figures in Charles Reade’s novel, Hard Cash. This essay looks at two major works Conolly published during the scandals and argues that they are responses to the charges against him. Both works focus on representations of insanity in art, rather than actual patients. “The Physiognomy of Insanity” (1858-59) is a series of essays on photographic portraits of asylum patients, and his essays prove to be more fictional than factual. A Study of Hamlet (1863) looks at the ambiguity of madness in Shakespeare’s portrayal of Hamlet, but it explains how Conolly understood the relationship between fact and fiction in cases of insanity. In both works, Conolly defends himself as an aesthete and defines his diagnostic method as a deliberate and necessary form of impressionism.
• #### Impact of potential inappropriate NSAIDs use in chronic pain

© 2015 Ussai et al. Pain remains one of the main reasons for medical consultation worldwide: moderate- to severe-intensity pain occurs in 19% of adult Europeans, seriously affecting the quality of their social and working lives. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are not recommended for long-term use and a careful surveillance to monitor for toxicity and efficacy is critical. This study aims to assess: 1) the pattern of use of NSAIDs and opioids in a population covered by a cloud-based pharmacovigilance surveillance system; and 2) potential inappropriate use. A retrospective 18-months systematic analysis on patients’ pain treatment was performed. The primary endpoint was evaluating the prevalence of NSAIDs and opioids use and the duration of therapy regimen. The secondary endpoint was to investigate the preva­lence of NSAIDs taken for >21 consecutive days concomitant with drugs for peptic ulcer and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GORD) or antiplatelet drugs. The yearly cost for individual users of concomitant NSAIDs for more than 21 consecutive days and of GORD medications has been estimated. A total of 3,050 subjects with chronic pain were enrolled; 97% of them took NSAIDs for >21 consecutive days; about one-fourth of these users also received drugs for peptic ulcer and GORD (Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical code A02B). The yearly cost foran individual who uses NSAIDs for >21 consecutive days as well as concomitant GORD medications is 61.23 euros. In total, 238 subjects (8%) using NSAIDs for >21 days also received one antiplatelet agent. About 11% of subjects received opioids at least once and only 2% of them carried on the therapy for more than 90 consecutive days. In evaluating the escalation in dosage as a proxy of dependence risk, this study shows no dosage escalation in our cohort of chronic pain population - that is to say we show no risk of dependence.
• #### Impact of Ribosomal Modification on the Binding of the Antibiotic Telithromycin Using a Combined Grand Canonical Monte Carlo/Molecular Dynamics Simulation Approach

Resistance to macrolide antibiotics is conferred by mutation of A2058 to G or methylation by Erm methyltransferases of the exocyclic N6 of A2058 (E. coli numbering) that forms the macrolide binding site in the 50S subunit of the ribosome. Ketolides such as telithromycin mitigate A2058G resistance yet remain susceptible to Erm-based resistance. Molecular details associated with macrolide resistance due to the A2058G mutation and methylation at N6 of A2058 by Erm methyltransferases were investigated using empirical force field-based simulations. To address the buried nature of the macrolide binding site, the number of waters within the pocket was allowed to fluctuate via the use of a Grand Canonical Monte Carlo (GCMC) methodology. The GCMC water insertion/deletion steps were alternated with Molecular Dynamics (MD) simulations to allow for relaxation of the entire system. From this GCMC/MD approach information on the interactions between telithromycin and the 50S ribosome was obtained. In the wild-type (WT) ribosome, the 2′-OH to A2058 N1 hydrogen bond samples short distances with a higher probability, while the effectiveness of telithromycin against the A2058G mutation is explained by a rearrangement of the hydrogen bonding pattern of the 2′-OH to 2058 that maintains the overall antibiotic-ribosome interactions. In both the WT and A2058G mutation there is significant flexibility in telithromycin's imidazole-pyridine side chain (ARM), indicating that entropic effects contribute to the binding affinity. Methylated ribosomes show lower sampling of short 2′-OH to 2058 distances and also demonstrate enhanced G2057-A2058 stacking leading to disrupted A752-U2609 Watson-Crick (WC) interactions as well as hydrogen bonding between telithromycin's ARM and U2609. This information will be of utility in the rational design of novel macrolide analogs with improved activity against methylated A2058 ribosomes. © 2013 Small et al.
• #### Impaired perception of surface tilt in progressive supranuclear palsy

© 2017 Dale et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. Introduction Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) is characterized by early postural instability and backward falls. The mechanisms underlying backward postural instability in PSP are not understood. The aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that postural instability in PSP is a result of dysfunction in the perception of postural verticality. Methods We gathered posturography data on 12 subjects with PSP to compare with 12 subjects with idiopathic Parkinson's Disease (PD) and 12 healthy subjects. Objective tests of postural impairment included: dynamic sensory perception tests of gravity and of surface oscillations, postural responses to surface perturbations, the sensory organization test of postural sway under altered sensory conditions and limits of stability in stance. Results Perception of toes up (but not toes down) surface tilt was reduced in subjects with PSP compared to both control subjects (p≤0.001 standing, p≤0.007 seated) and subjects with PD (p≤0.03 standing, p≤0.04 seated). Subjects with PSP, PD and normal controls accurately perceived the direction of gravity when standing on a tilting surface. Unlike PD and control subjects, subjects with PSP exerted less postural corrective torque in response to toes up surface tilts. Discussion Difficulty perceiving backward tilt of the surface or body may account for backward falls and postural impairments in patients with PSP. These observations suggest that abnormal central integration of sensory inputs for perception of body and surface orientation contributes to the pathophysiology of postural instability in PSP.
• #### Implementing music therapy through telehealth: considerations for military populations

Purpose: Telehealth provides psychotherapeutic interventions and psychoeducation for remote populations with limited access to in-person behavioural health and/or rehabilitation treatment. The United States Department of Défense and the Veterans Health Administration use telehealth to deliver primary care, medication management, and services including physical, occupational, and speech-language therapies for service members, veterans, and eligible dependents. While creative arts therapies are included in telehealth programming, the existing evidence base focuses on art therapy and dance/movement therapy, with a paucity of information on music therapy. Methods: Discussion of didactic and applied music experiences, clinical, ethical, and technological considerations, and research pertaining to music therapy telehealth addresses this gap through presentation of three case examples. These programmes highlight music therapy telehealth with military-connected populations on a continuum of clinical and community engagement: 1) collaboration between Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA and the Acoke Rural Development Initiative in Lira, Uganda; 2) the Semper Sound Cyber Health programme in San Diego, CA; and 3) the integration of music therapy telehealth into Creative Forces®, an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts. Results: These examples illustrate that participants were found to positively respond to music therapy and community music engagement through telehealth, and reported decrease in pain, anxiety, and depression; they endorsed that telehealth was not a deterrent to continued music engagement, requested continued music therapy telehealth sessions, and recommended it to their peers. Conclusions: Knowledge gaps and evolving models of creative arts therapies telehealth for military-connected populations are elucidated, with emphasis on clinical and ethical considerations.
• #### Improved measurement of the longitudinal spin transfer to Λ and Λ¯ hyperons in polarized proton-proton collisions at s=200  GeV

The longitudinal spin transfer $D_{LL}$ to $\Lambda$ and $\bar{\Lambda}$ hyperons produced in high-energy polarized proton--proton collisions is expected to be sensitive to the helicity distribution functions of strange quarks and anti-quarks of the proton, and to longitudinally polarized fragmentation functions. We report an improved measurement of $D_{LL}$ from data obtained at a center-of-mass energy of $\sqrt{s}$ = 200 GeV with the STAR detector at RHIC. The data have an approximately twelve times larger figure-of-merit than prior results and cover $|\eta|<$ 1.2 in pseudo-rapidity with transverse momenta $p_T$ up to 6 GeV/c. In the forward scattering hemisphere at largest $p_T$, the longitudinal spin transfer is found to be $D_{LL}$ = -0.036 $\pm$ 0.048 (stat) $\pm$ 0.013(sys) for $\Lambda$ hyperons and $D_{LL}$ = 0.032 $\pm$ 0.043\,(stat) $\pm$ 0.013\,(sys) for $\bar{\Lambda}$ anti-hyperons. The dependences on $\eta$ and $p_T$ are presented and compared with model evaluations.
• #### Improved measurement of the reactor antineutrino flux and spectrum at Daya Bay

© Article funded by SCOAP3 and published under licence by Chinese Physical Society and the Institute of High Energy Physics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Modern Physics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and IOP Publishing Ltd. A new measurement of the reactor antineutrino flux and energy spectrum by the Daya Bay reactor neutrino experiment is reported. The antineutrinos were generated by six 2.9 GWth nuclear reactors and detected by eight antineutrino detectors deployed in two near (560 m and 600 m flux-weighted baselines) and one far (1640 m flux-weighted baseline) underground experimental halls. With 621 days of data, more than 1.2 million inverse beta decay (IBD) candidates were detected. The IBD yield in the eight detectors was measured, and the ratio of measured to predicted flux was found to be 0.946±0.020 (0.992±0.021) for the Huber+Mueller (ILL+Vogel) model. A 2.9σ deviation was found in the measured IBD positron energy spectrum compared to the predictions. In particular, an excess of events in the region of 4-6 MeV was found in the measured spectrum, with a local significance of 4.4σ. A reactor antineutrino spectrum weighted by the IBD cross section is extracted for model-independent predictions.
• #### Improved proper name recall in aging after electrical stimulation of the anterior temporal lobes

Evidence from neuroimaging and neuropsychology suggests that portions of the anterior temporal lobes (ATLs) play a critical role in proper name retrieval. We previously found that anodal transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to the ATLs improved retrieval of proper names in young adults (Ross et al., 2010). Here we extend that finding to older adults who tend to experience greater proper-naming deficits than young adults. The task was to look at pictures of famous faces or landmarks and verbally recall the associated proper name. Our results show a numerical improvement in face naming after left or right ATL stimulation, but a statistically significant effect only after left-lateralized stimulation. The magnitude of the enhancing effect was similar in older and younger adults but the lateralization of the effect differed depending on age. The implications of these findings for the use of tDCS as tool for rehabilitation of age-related loss of name recall are discussed.
• #### Improvement of In Vitro Three-Dimensional Cartilage Regeneration by a Novel Hydrostatic Pressure Bioreactor

In vitro three-dimensional (3D) cartilage regeneration is a promising strategy for repair of cartilage defects. However, inferior mechanical strength and tissue homogeneity greatly restricted its clinical translation. Simulation of mechanical stress through a bioreactor is an important approach for improving in vitro cartilage regeneration. The current study developed a hydrostatic pressure (HP) bioreactor based on a novel pressure-transmitting mode achieved by slight deformation of a flexible membrane in a completely sealed stainless steel device. The newly developed bioreactor efficiently avoided the potential risks of previously reported pressure-transmitting modes and simultaneously addressed a series of important issues, such as pressure scopes, culture chamber sizes, sealability, contamination control, and CO2 balance. The whole bioreactor system realized stable long-term (8 weeks) culture under high HP (5-10 MPa) without the problems of medium leakage and contamination. Furthermore, the results of in vitro 3D tissue culture based on a cartilage regeneration model revealed that HP provided by the newly developed bioreactor efficiently promoted in vitro 3D cartilage formation by improving its mechanical strength, thickness, and homogeneity. Detailed analysis in cell proliferation, cartilage matrix production, and cross-linking level of collagen macromolecules, as well as density and alignment of collagen fibers, further revealed the possible mechanisms that HP regulated in vitro cartilage regeneration. The current study provided a highly efficient and stable bioreactor system for improving in vitro 3D cartilage regeneration and thus will help to accelerate its clinical translation. Stem Cells Translational Medicine 2017;6:982-991.
• #### In silico generation of peptides by replica exchange monte carlo: Docking-based optimization of maltose-binding-protein ligands

© 2015 Russo et al. Short peptides can be designed in silico and synthesized through automated techniques, making them advantageous and versatile protein binders. A number of docking-based algorithms allow for a computational screening of peptides as binders. Here we developed ex-novo peptides targeting the maltose site of the Maltose Binding Protein, the prototypical system for the study of protein ligand recognition.We used a Monte Carlo based protocol, to computationally evolve a set of octapeptides starting from a polialanine sequence. We screened in silico the candidate peptides and characterized their binding abilities by surface plasmon resonance, fluorescence and electrospray ionization mass spectrometry assays. These experiments showed the designed binders to recognize their target with micromolar affinity. We finally discuss the obtained results in the light of further improvement in the exnovo optimization of peptide based binders. Copyright:
• #### In situ characterization of nanoparticles using rayleigh scattering

© The Author(s) 2017. We report a theoretical analysis showing that Rayleigh scattering could be used to monitor the growth of nanoparticles under arc discharge conditions. We compute the Rayleigh scattering cross sections of the nanoparticles by combining light scattering theory for gas-particle mixtures with calculations of the dynamic electronic polarizability of the nanoparticles. We find that the resolution of the Rayleigh scattering probe is adequate to detect nanoparticles as small as C 60 at the expected concentrations of synthesis conditions in the arc periphery. Larger asymmetric nanoparticles would yield brighter signals, making possible to follow the evolution of the growing nanoparticle population from the evolution of the scattered intensity. Observable spectral features include characteristic resonant behaviour, shape-dependent depolarization ratio, and mass-dependent line shape. Direct observation of nanoparticles in the early stages of growth with unobtrusive laser probes should give insight on the particle formation mechanisms and may lead to better-controlled synthesis protocols.
• #### In Vitro and in Vivo Anti-tumor Activity of miR-221/222 inhibitors in multiple myeloma

A rising body of evidence suggests that silencing microRNAs (miRNAs) with oncogenic potential may represent a successful therapeutic strategy for human cancer. We investigated the therapeutic activity of miR-221/222 inhibitors against human multiple myeloma (MM) cells. Enforced expression of miR-221/222 inhibitors triggered in vitro anti-proliferative effects and up-regulation of canonic miR-221/222 targets, including p27Kip1, PUMA, PTEN and p57Kip2, in MM cells highly expressing miR-221/222. Conversely, transfection of miR-221/222 mimics increased S-phase and down-regulated p27Kip1 protein expression in MM with low basal miR-221/222 levels. The effects of miR-221/222 inhibitors was also evaluated in MM xenografts in SCID/ NOD mice. Significant anti-tumor activity was achieved in xenografted mice by the treatment with miR-221/222 inhibitors, together with up-regulation of canonic protein targets in tumors retrieved from animals. These findings provide proof of principle that silencing the miR-221/222 cluster exerts significant therapeutic activity in MM cells with high miR-221/222 level of expression, which mostly occurs in TC2 and TC4 MM groups. These findings suggest that MM genotyping may predict the therapeutic response. All together our results support a framework for clinical development of miR-221/222 inhibitors-based therapeutic strategy in this still incurable disease.
• #### Incidence of breast cancer in Italy: Mastectomies and quadrantectomies performed between 2000 and 2005

Objectives. We aimed to determine the incidence of women's breast cancer in Italy without using statistical approximations. Methods. We analyzed the national hospitalizations database at the Ministry of Health to calculate the number of major surgeries in Italian women (mastectomies and quadrantectomies) due to breast cancer between 2000 and 2005, overall and by age groups (<44, 4564, 6574 and 75 years old). Results. Over the six years examined, an overall number of 100,745 mastectomies and 168,147 quadrantectomies were performed. A total of 41,608 major surgeries due to breast cancer were performed in the year 2000 and this number rose to 47,200 in 2005, with a 13.4% increase over six years. Conclusion. by analyzing the hospitalizations database concerning major breast surgery, incidence of breast cancer in Italy was found to be 26.5% higher than the official estimations which have been computed using statistical models (namely 47,200 vs. 37,300 cases in year 2005). © 2009 Piscitelli et al.