Publications by authors named "Chong Xie"

78 Publications

Controllable Heterojunctions with a Semicoherent Phase Boundary Boosting the Potassium Storage of CoSe /FeSe.

Adv Mater 2021 Aug 2:e2102471. Epub 2021 Aug 2.

Xi'an Key Laboratory of New Energy Materials and Devices Institute of Advanced Electrochemical Energy & School of Materials Science and Engineering, Xi'an University of Technology, Xi'an, Shaanxi, 710048, China.

Heterostructure construction is an efficient method for reinforcing K storage of transition metal selenides. The spontaneously developed internal electric fields give a strong boost to charge transport and significantly reduce the activation energy. Nevertheless, perfection of the interfacial region based on the energy level gradient and lattice matching degree is still a great challenge. Herein, rich vacancies and ultrafine CoSe -FeSe heterojunctions with semicoherent phase boundary are simultaneously obtained, which possess unique electronic structures and abundant active sites. When employed as anodes for potassium-ion batteries (PIBs), CoSe -FeSe @C composites display a reversible potassium storage of 401.1 mAh g at 100 mA g and even 275 mAh g at 2 A g . Theoretical calculation also reveals that the potassium-ion diffusion can be dramatically promoted by the controllable CoSe -FeSe heterojunction.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adma.202102471DOI Listing
August 2021

A Stable Cell Line Expressing Clustered AChR: A Novel Cell-Based Assay for Anti-AChR Antibody Detection in Myasthenia Gravis.

Front Immunol 2021 8;12:666046. Epub 2021 Jul 8.

Department of Neurology, Renji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, China.

Cell-based assays (CBAs) and radioimmunoprecipitation assay (RIPA) are the most sensitive methods for identifying anti-acetylcholine receptor (AChR) antibody in myasthenia gravis (MG). But CBAs are limited in clinical practice by transient transfection. We established a stable cell line (KL525) expressing clustered AChR by infecting HEK 293T cells with dual lentiviral vectors expressing the genes encoding the human AChR α1, β1, δ, ϵ and the clustering protein rapsyn. We verified the stable expression of human clustered AChR by immunofluorescence, immunoblotting, and real-time PCR. Fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) was used to detect anti-AChR antibodies in 103 MG patients and 58 healthy individuals. The positive results of MG patients reported by the KL525 was 80.6% (83/103), 29.1% higher than the 51.4% (53/103) of RIPA. 58 healthy individuals tested by both the KL525 CBA and RIPA were all negative. In summary, the stable expression of clustered AChR in our cell line makes it highly sensitive and advantageous for broad clinical application in CBAs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2021.666046DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8297518PMC
July 2021

Multi-scale neural decoding and analysis.

J Neural Eng 2021 Jul 20. Epub 2021 Jul 20.

Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, 107 W Dean Keeton Street, Stop C0800, United States, Austin, Texas, 78712-1801, UNITED STATES.

Objective: Complex spatiotemporal neural activity encodes rich information related to behavior and cognition. Conventional research has focused on neural activity acquired using one of many different measurement modalities, each of which provides useful but incomplete assessment of the neural code. Multi-modal techniques can overcome tradeoffs in the spatial and temporal resolution of a single modality to reveal deeper and more comprehensive understanding of system-level neural mechanisms. Uncovering multi-scale dynamics is essential for a mechanistic understanding of brain function and for harnessing neuroscientific insights to develop more effective clinical treatment.

Approach: We discuss conventional methodologies used for characterizing neural activity at different scales and review contemporary examples of how these approaches have been combined. Then we present our case for integrating activity across multiple scales to benefit from the combined strengths of each approach and elucidate a more holistic understanding of neural processes.

Main Results: We examine various combinations of neural activity at different scales and analytical techniques that can be used to integrate or illuminate information across scales, as well the technologies that enable such exciting studies. We conclude with challenges facing future multi-scale studies, and a discussion of the power and potential of these approaches.

Significance: This roadmap will lead the readers toward a broad range of multi-scale neural decoding techniques and their benefits over single-modality analyses. This Review article highlights the importance of multi-scale analyses for systematically interrogating complex spatiotemporal mechanisms underlying cognition and behavior.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/1741-2552/ac160fDOI Listing
July 2021

GABA Regulates Phenolics Accumulation in Soybean Sprouts under NaCl Stress.

Antioxidants (Basel) 2021 Jun 21;10(6). Epub 2021 Jun 21.

College of Food Science and Technology, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing 210095, China.

NaCl stress causes oxidative stress in plants; γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) could alleviate such abiotic stress by enhancing the synthesis of phenolics, but the underlying mechanism is not clear. We investigated the effects of GABA on phenolics accumulation in soybean sprouts under NaCl stress by measuring changes in the content of physiological biochemicals and phenolic substances, in the activity and gene expression of key enzymes, and in antioxidant capacity. GABA reduced the oxidative damage in soybean sprouts caused by NaCl stress and enhanced the content of total phenolics, phenolic acids, and isoflavones by 16.58%, 22.47%, and 3.75%, respectively. It also increased the activities and expression of phenylalanine ammonia lyase, cinnamic acid 4-hydroxylase, and 4-coumarate coenzyme A ligase. Furthermore, GABA increased the activity of antioxidant enzymes and the antioxidant capacity. These events were inhibited by 3-mercaptopropionate (an inhibitor for GABA synthesis), indicating that GABA mediated phenolics accumulation and antioxidant system enhancement in soybean sprouts under NaCl stress.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/antiox10060990DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8235516PMC
June 2021

Optimized design of a hyperflexible sieve electrode to enhance neurovascular regeneration for a peripheral neural interface.

Biomaterials 2021 Aug 8;275:120924. Epub 2021 Jun 8.

The University of Texas at Austin, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Austin, TX, USA; Institute for Cellular and Molecular Biology, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, USA; Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, USA; Institute for Biomaterials, Drug Delivery and Regenerative Medicine, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, USA. Electronic address:

One in 190 Americans is currently living with the loss of a limb resulted from injury, amputation, or neurodegenerative disease. Advanced neuroprosthetic devices combine peripheral neural interfaces with sophisticated prosthetics and hold great potential for the rehabilitation of impaired motor and sensory functions. While robotic prosthetics have advanced very rapidly, peripheral neural interfaces have long been limited by the capability of interfacing with the peripheral nervous system. In this work, we developed a hyperflexible regenerative sieve electrode to serve as a peripheral neural interface. We examined tissue neurovascular integration through this novel device. We demonstrated that we could enhance the neurovascular invasion through the device with directional growth factor delivery. Furthermore, we demonstrated that we could reduce the tissue reaction to the device often seen in peripheral neural interfaces. Finally, we show that we can create a stable tissue device interface in a long-term implantation that does not impede the normal regenerative processes of the nerve. Our study developed an optimal platform for the continued development of hyperflexible sieve electrode peripheral neural interfaces.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2021.120924DOI Listing
August 2021

miR-20a suppresses Treg differentiation by targeting Map3k9 in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis.

J Transl Med 2021 05 26;19(1):223. Epub 2021 May 26.

Department of Neurology, Renji Hospital, Shanghai Jiaotong University School of Medicine, 160 Pujian Road, Shanghai, 200127, China.

Background: Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) is a model for inflammatory demyelinating diseases of the central nervous system (CNS), a group of autoimmune diseases characterized by inflammatory infiltration, demyelination, and axonal damage. miR-20a is dysregulated in patients with CNS inflammatory demyelinating diseases; however, the function of miR-20a remains unclear. In this study, we intended to explore the role of miR-20a in EAE.

Methods: The expression of miR-20a was detected by quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) in EAE mice and patients with MOG antibody-associated demyelinating diseases. CD4 T cells of EAE mice were sorted, stimulated, and polarized with miR-20a knockdown. Activation and differentiation of CD4 T cells were analyzed by flow cytometry. The expression of target gene Map3k9 was detected by qRT-PCR and western blot experiments. The binding of miR-20a to the 3' UTR of Map3k9 was tested by luciferase assays. The feasibility of miR-20a as a therapeutic target to alleviate the severity of EAE was explored by intravenous administration of miR-20a antagomirs to EAE mice.

Results: miR-20a was upregulated in splenocytes and lymph node cells, CD4 T cells, and spinal cords of EAE mice. Moreover, miR-20a knockdown did not influence the activation of antigen-specific CD4 T cells but promoted their differentiation into Treg cells. Map3k9 was predicted to be a target gene of miR-20a. The expressions of Map3k9 and miR-20a were negatively correlated, and miR-20a knockdown increased the expression of Map3k9. In addition, miR-20a binded to the 3' UTR of Map3k9, and simultaneous knockdown of miR-20a and Map3k9 counteracted the enhanced differentiation of Tregs observed when miR-20a was knocked down alone. Furthermore, injection of miR-20a antagomirs to EAE mice reduced the severity of the disease and increased the proportion of Treg cells in peripheral immune organs.

Conclusions: miR-20a suppresses the differentiation of antigen-specific CD4 T cells into Tregs in EAE by decreasing the expression of Map3k9. miR-20a antagomirs alleviate EAE, suggesting a new therapy for EAE and CNS inflammatory demyelinating diseases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12967-021-02893-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8157414PMC
May 2021

Neurofascin antibodies in chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyradiculoneuropathy: from intrinsic genetic background to clinical manifestations.

Neurol Sci 2021 Jun 29;42(6):2223-2233. Epub 2021 Mar 29.

Department of Neurology, Renji Hospital Shanghai Jiaotong University School of Medicine, 160 Pujian Road, Shanghai, 200127, China.

There are bunch of autoantibodies, particularly autoantibodies against proteins located at the node of Ranvier, have been discovered and transformed the clinical management of chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyradiculoneuropathy (CIDP). Neurofascin (NF) plays an important role in both the nodal and paranodal regions of the node of Ranvier. In this review, we focus on the two characteristic forms of neurofascin: NF186 and NF155, comparing the similarities and differences between them, reviewing the current knowledge on genetic backgrounds, pathogenesis, clinical manifestations, and management of patients with anti-neurofascin positive CIDP. Autoantibodies against neurofascin were mainly IgG4 isotype. Mutation of NFASC gene in human causes severe neurodevelopment disorders, and HLA DRB1*15 may be a strong risk factor for the development of anti-NF155 antibodies. Motor impairment, sensory ataxia, and tremor were the typical presentations of patients with anti-NF155+ CIDP, while tetraplegia and cranial nerve involvement were more common in patients with anti-NF186+ CIDP. Recent studies have depicted a relatively clear picture of anti-NF155+ CIDP, and the strong clinical correlation of NF186 with CIDP remains unclear. The genetic background of neurofascin will assist in future explorations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10072-021-05220-3DOI Listing
June 2021

From PNS to CNS: characteristics of anti-neurofascin 186 neuropathy in 16 cases.

Neurol Sci 2021 Mar 15. Epub 2021 Mar 15.

Department of Neurology, Renji Hospital, Shanghai Jiaotong University School of Medicine, 160 Pujian Road, Pudong, Shanghai, 200127, China.

Introduction: Neurofascin (NF) is critical for the formation and maintenance of Ranvier nodes. NF186, the neuronal form of NF, localizes in the initial segment of axon and Ranvier node. NF186 antibody has been detected in demyelinating diseases of both central nervous system (CNS) and peripheral nervous system (PNS).

Aims: To evaluate the clinical features of patients with anti-NF186 IgG neuropathy.

Methods: Sixteen patients (16/138) with serum-positive anti-NF186 IgG were included and divided into groups of either CNS or PNS-involved according to their clinical manifestations. Anti-NF186 IgG was detected by cell-based assays.

Results: In 7 patients who were confirmed to have CNS involvement, the most frequent symptoms were dizziness (57%) and vision impairment (43%); lesions in centrum semiovale, cerebellum, and meninges were shown by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). In comparison, limb weakness (78%) and numbness (78%) were the most common symptoms in PNS-involved patients; axonal loss and demyelination were confirmed by nerve conduction examinations. Elevated level of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) protein was found in 12 cases without statistically significant difference between the CNS and PNS groups. Meanwhile, CSF white blood cell counts were found significantly elevated in CNS-involved patients compared with patients of PNS group. Thirteen patients received immunomodulating treatments, and patients with chronic onset and progressive course showed poor response to the therapies.

Conclusions: Patients with anti-NF186 IgG neuropathy showed no specific symptoms or signs. It is worth noting that quite a few patients show CNS-impaired signs only, and cranial MRI is essential for the screening of CNS involvement.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10072-021-05101-9DOI Listing
March 2021

Flexible [email protected] cathodes with robust mechanical strength via blade-coating for lithium-sulfur batteries.

J Colloid Interface Sci 2021 Jun 21;592:448-454. Epub 2021 Feb 21.

Xi'an Key Laboratory of New Energy Materials and Devices, Institute of Advanced Electrochemical Energy, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Xi'an University of Technology, Xi'an, Shaanxi 710048, China; Shaanxi International Joint Research Centre of Surface Technology for Energy Storage Materials, Xi'an, Shaanxi 710048, China. Electronic address:

Lithium sulfur batteries (LSBs) with high energy density hold some promising applications in the wearable and flexible devices. However, it has been still challenging to develop a simple and feasible approach to prepare flexible LSB cathodes with both robust mechanical strength. Herein, flexible [email protected] cathodes with controllable thicknesses are successfully fabricated via a facile blade-coating method. Due to the strong cohesion among CNTs bundles and the well-designed structure, the flexible [email protected] cathodes are demonstrated to be with a combination of impressive mechanical strength and enhanced electrochemical performance. For the flexible [email protected] cathodes with the sulfur mass loading of 4 mg cm, the areal capacity is close to 3.0 mA h cm, and the breaking stress is up to 5.59 MPa with 7.77% strain. Meanwhile, the pouch cell exhibits excellent cyclic stability at both flat/bent conditions. All demonstrate that the flexible [email protected] cathodes may satisfy the demands of practical application. Moreover, this methodology is suitable for designing other flexible battery electrodes, such as flexible [email protected] anodes for lithium ion batteries, flexible [email protected] anodes for sodium/potassium ion batteries, etc.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jcis.2021.02.065DOI Listing
June 2021

The identification, development and therapeutic potential of IL-10-producing regulatory B cells in multiple sclerosis.

J Neuroimmunol 2021 05 27;354:577520. Epub 2021 Feb 27.

Department of Neurology, Renji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiaotong University, 160 Pujian Rd, Shanghai 200127, China. Electronic address:

Regulatory B cells are a rare B-cell subset widely known to exert their immunosuppressive function via the production of interleukin-10 (IL-10) and other mechanisms. B10 cells are a special subset of regulatory B cells with immunoregulatory function that is fully attributed to IL-10. Their unique roles in the animal model of multiple sclerosis (MS) have been described, as well as their relevance in MS patients. This review specifically focuses on the identification and development of B10 cells, the signals that promote IL-10 production in B cells, the roles of B10 cells in MS, and the potential and major challenges of the application of B10-based therapies for MS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jneuroim.2021.577520DOI Listing
May 2021

Organic Solvent-Free Preparation of Chitosan Nanofibers with High Specific Surface Charge and Their Application in Biomaterials.

ACS Appl Mater Interfaces 2021 Mar 24;13(10):12347-12358. Epub 2021 Feb 24.

School of Food Science and Engineering, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510644, China.

The application of chitosan nanofibers in biological tissue-engineering materials has attracted wide attention. A novel and organic solvent-free method was developed for the fabrication of rootlike chitosan nanofibers (CSNFs) with diameters of 40-250 nm. This method includes three-step mechanical processing of swelling-beating-centrifugation or swelling-beating-homogenization. The obtained nanofibers showed high yields (>95%) and positive specific surface charges (up to +375 μeq/g) and could be uniformly dispersed in the aqueous phase. The unique fiber shape and the good length-to-diameter ratio of CSNFs endowed chitosan nanofiber paper (CSNFP) products with excellent mechanical properties, and the wet tensile strength of the CSNFPs was nearly five times higher than common chitosan films. In addition, the calvaria-derived preosteoblastic cells exhibited a higher adherence efficiency and proliferation on CSNFP than on chitosan films. The chitosan nanofiber scaffold products also benefited the attachment of preosteoblastic cells and allowed them to grow in three dimensions. This method has significant industrial potential for the industrialization of chitosan nanofibers, which may have broad applications in various biomaterials.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsami.0c21796DOI Listing
March 2021

The Argo: a high channel count recording system for neural recording in vivo.

J Neural Eng 2021 02 24;18(1):015002. Epub 2021 Feb 24.

Paradromics, Inc, Austin, TX, United States of America.

Objective: Decoding neural activity has been limited by the lack of tools available to record from large numbers of neurons across multiple cortical regions simultaneously with high temporal fidelity. To this end, we developed the Argo system to record cortical neural activity at high data rates.

Approach: Here we demonstrate a massively parallel neural recording system based on platinum-iridium microwire electrode arrays bonded to a CMOS voltage amplifier array. The Argo system is the highest channel count in vivo neural recording system, supporting simultaneous recording from 65 536 channels, sampled at 32 kHz and 12-bit resolution. This system was designed for cortical recordings, compatible with both penetrating and surface microelectrodes.

Main Results: We validated this system through initial bench testing to determine specific gain and noise characteristics of bonded microwires, followed by in-vivo experiments in both rat and sheep cortex. We recorded spiking activity from 791 neurons in rats and surface local field potential activity from over 30 000 channels in sheep.

Significance: These are the largest channel count microwire-based recordings in both rat and sheep. While currently adapted for head-fixed recording, the microwire-CMOS architecture is well suited for clinical translation. Thus, this demonstration helps pave the way for a future high data rate intracortical implant.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/1741-2552/abd0ceDOI Listing
February 2021

Recent Advances in Electrical Neural Interface Engineering: Minimal Invasiveness, Longevity, and Scalability.

Neuron 2020 10;108(2):302-321

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Rice University, Houston, TX, USA; Department of Bioengineering, Rice University, Houston, TX, USA; NeuroEngineering Initiative, Rice University, Houston, TX, USA. Electronic address:

Electrical neural interfaces serve as direct communication pathways that connect the nervous system with the external world. Technological advances in this domain are providing increasingly more powerful tools to study, restore, and augment neural functions. Yet, the complexities of the nervous system give rise to substantial challenges in the design, fabrication, and system-level integration of these functional devices. In this review, we present snapshots of the latest progresses in electrical neural interfaces, with an emphasis on advances that expand the spatiotemporal resolution and extent of mapping and manipulating brain circuits. We include discussions of large-scale, long-lasting neural recording; wireless, miniaturized implants; signal transmission, amplification, and processing; as well as the integration of interfaces with optical modalities. We outline the background and rationale of these developments and share insights into the future directions and new opportunities they enable.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neuron.2020.10.011DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7646678PMC
October 2020

The Effects and Underlying Mechanisms of Cell Therapy on Blood-Brain Barrier Integrity After Ischemic Stroke.

Curr Neuropharmacol 2020 ;18(12):1213-1226

Department of Neurology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing 400016, China

Ischemic stroke is one of the main causes of mortality and disability worldwide. However, efficient therapeutic strategies are still lacking. Stem/progenitor cell-based therapy, with its vigorous advantages, has emerged as a promising tool for the treatment of ischemic stroke. The mechanisms involve new neural cells and neuronal circuitry formation, antioxidation, inflammation alleviation, angiogenesis, and neurogenesis promotion. In the past decades, in-depth studies have suggested that cell therapy could promote vascular stabilization and decrease blood-brain barrier (BBB) leakage after ischemic stroke. However, the effects and underlying mechanisms on BBB integrity induced by the engrafted cells in ischemic stroke have not been reviewed yet. Herein, we will update the progress in research on the effects of cell therapy on BBB integrity after ischemic stroke and review the underlying mechanisms. First, we will present an overview of BBB dysfunction under the ischemic condition and cells engraftment for ischemic treatment. Then, we will summarize and discuss the current knowledge about the effects and underlying mechanisms of cell therapy on BBB integrity after ischemic stroke. In particular, we will review the most recent studies in regard to the relationship between cell therapy and BBB in tissue plasminogen activator (t-PA)-mediated therapy and diabetic stroke.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2174/1570159X18666200914162013DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7770640PMC
January 2020

Experimental mouse model of NMOSD produced by facilitated brain delivery of NMO-IgG by microbubble-enhanced low-frequency ultrasound in experimental allergic encephalomyelitis mice.

Mult Scler Relat Disord 2020 Nov 30;46:102473. Epub 2020 Aug 30.

Department of Neurology, Renji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, No.1630 Dongfang Road, 200127, Shanghai, China. Electronic address:

Although optic neuritis and myelitis are the core clinical characteristics of neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders (NMOSD), appropriate animal models of NMOSD with myelitis and optic neuritis are lacking. we developed a mouse model of NMOSD by intravenously injecting 100 µg neuromyelitis optica immunoglobulin G antibody (NMO-IgG) and complement into experimental allergic encephalomyelitis (EAE) mice after reversible blood-brain barrier (BBB) opening by microbubble-enhanced low-frequency ultrasound (MELFUS). Animals were assessed by histopathology. We found noticeable inflammation and demyelination concomitant with the loss of aquaporin-4 (AQP4) and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) expression in the spinal cord, brain and optic nerve, as well as human IgG and C9neo deposition. Thus, with the help of MELFUS, we established an NMOSD mouse model with the core lesions of NMOSD by applying a considerably lower dose of human NMO-IgG, which may help identify the pathogenesis and facilitate the development of other neuroimmune disease models in the future.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.msard.2020.102473DOI Listing
November 2020

Dietary restriction and/or exercise training impairs spermatogenesis in normal rats.

Appl Physiol Nutr Metab 2021 Mar 9;46(3):229-237. Epub 2020 Sep 9.

International Peace Maternity and Child Health Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200030, China.

Dietary restriction and/or exercise has been shown to have multiple benefits for health. However, its effects on reproductive health and the mechanisms by which it regulates reproductive function remain unclear. Here, to evaluate its effects on spermatogenesis and sperm function, rats were divided into 4 groups: ad libitum-fed sedentary control, dietary restriction (DR), exercise training (ET), and dietary restriction plus exercise training (DR+ET) groups. Results indicated that body weight, epididymal fat pad weight, and sperm counts were significantly reduced in the DR, ET, and DR+ET groups. Moreover, sperm motility and capacitation-associated protein tyrosine phosphorylation were suppressed in the DR and DR+ET groups, but not the ET group. Microarray analysis revealed that the number of downregulated genes was higher than that of upregulated genes in the DR and/or ET groups. About half of the downregulated genes are common after exercise training and/or diet restriction. Gene ontology analysis showed that downregulated genes in the DR, ET, and DR+ET groups affected spermatogenesis through overlapping pathways, including glucocorticoid, corticosteroid, extracellular structure organization, and estradiol responses. Our findings suggest that diet restriction and/or exercise training may present potential risks to male reproductive dysfunction by disrupting normal gene expression patterns in the testis. Dietary restriction and/or exercise can lead to the damage of spermatogenesis as well as sperm maturation. Sperm functional changes are more sensitive to dietary restriction than exercise training. Dietary restriction and exercise impair spermatogenesis through overlapping biological pathways in the testis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1139/apnm-2020-0477DOI Listing
March 2021

Ultraflexible Neural Electrodes for Long-Lasting Intracortical Recording.

iScience 2020 Aug 20;23(8):101387. Epub 2020 Jul 20.

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Rice University, 6100 Main Street, Houston, TX 77005, USA; NeuroEngineering Initiative, Rice University, 6500 Main Street, Houston, TX 77005, USA; Department of Bioengineering, Rice University, 6100 Main Street, Houston, TX 77005, USA. Electronic address:

Implanted electrodes provide one of the most important neurotechniques for fundamental and translational neurosciences by permitting time-resolved electrical detection of individual neurons in vivo. However, conventional rigid electrodes typically cannot provide stable, long-lasting recordings. Numerous interwoven biotic and abiotic factors at the tissue-electrode interface lead to short- and long-term instability of the recording performance. Making neural electrodes flexible provides a promising approach to mitigate these challenges on the implants and at the tissue-electrode interface. Here we review the recent progress of ultraflexible neural electrodes and discuss the engineering principles, the material properties, and the implantation strategies to achieve stable tissue-electrode interface and reliable unit recordings in living brains.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.isci.2020.101387DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7398974PMC
August 2020

Lambert-Eaton myasthenia syndrome: specified description of a response pattern to low-frequency repetitive nerve stimulation.

J Electromyogr Kinesiol 2020 Aug 9;53:102437. Epub 2020 Jun 9.

Department of Neurology, Renji Hospital Shanghai Jiaotong University School of Medicine, Shanghai, China. Electronic address:

Objective: We aimed to specify and quantify the characteristics of the decrement in low-frequency repetitive nerve stimulation response in Lambert-Eaton myasthenia syndrome (LEMS) and compare it to those of myasthenia gravis (MG).

Patients And Methods: We retrospectively reviewed 18 patients with LEMS and 24 patients with MG. Ten consecutive stimulations were applied at 3 Hz to the abductor pollicis brevis. We determined the position of the smallest wave in the stimulation sequence, and we calculated the decrement and recovery.

Results: The median sequential order of the minimum wave was 8 in the LEMS group and 5 in the MG group (p < 0.001). The median decrement in the LEMS group was 36.7%, while that in the MG group was 21.0% (p = 0.047). The recovery percentage was 1.4% in the LEMS group and 3.5% in the MG group (p = 0.001). The area under the curve for the sequential order of the minimum wave was 0.90, and the reciprocal optimum cut-off point was 6.5.

Conclusions: We elucidated a pattern with a delayed nadir and subsequent poor recovery, featuring a low-frequency decrement; furthermore, we determined the most likely sequential order of the minimum wave in patients with LEMS, and the indicator was useful for differentiation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jelekin.2020.102437DOI Listing
August 2020

Multimodal mapping of neural activity and cerebral blood flow reveals long-lasting neurovascular dissociations after small-scale strokes.

Sci Adv 2020 May 22;6(21):eaba1933. Epub 2020 May 22.

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Rice University, 6100 Main Street, Houston, TX 77005, USA.

Neurovascular coupling, the close spatial and temporal relationship between neural activity and hemodynamics, is disrupted in pathological brain states. To understand the altered neurovascular relationship in brain disorders, longitudinal, simultaneous mapping of neural activity and hemodynamics is critical yet challenging to achieve. Here, we use a multimodal neural platform in a mouse model of stroke and realize long-term, spatially resolved tracking of intracortical neural activity and cerebral blood flow in the same brain regions. We observe a pronounced neurovascular dissociation that occurs immediately after small-scale strokes, becomes the most severe a few days after, lasts into chronic periods, and varies with the level of ischemia. Neuronal deficits extend spatiotemporally, whereas restoration of cerebral blood flow occurs sooner and reaches a higher relative value. Our findings reveal the neurovascular impact of ministrokes and inform the limitation of neuroimaging techniques that infer neural activity from hemodynamic responses.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.aba1933DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7244270PMC
May 2020

Elastic buffer structured Si/C microsphere anodes via polymerization-induced colloid aggregation.

Chem Commun (Camb) 2020 Jun;56(50):6770-6773

Xi'an Key Laboratory of New Energy Materials and Devices, Institute of Advanced Electrochemical Energy, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Xi'an University of Technology, Xi'an, Shaanxi 710048, China. and Shaanxi International Joint Research Centre of Surface Technology for Energy Storage Materials, Xi'an, Shaanxi 710048, China.

Si/C microsphere anodes with well-designed structures were successfully synthesized via the polymerization-induced colloid aggregation (PICA) method. The voids and void-holes in the carbon framework provide the direct and elastic buffer space for volume expansion of Si nanoparticles, respectively. This anode exhibits an outstanding structural integrity and enhanced cycling stability.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d0cc02967jDOI Listing
June 2020

Spikes to Pixels: Camera Chips for Large-scale Electrophysiology.

Trends Neurosci 2020 May 26;43(5):269-271. Epub 2020 Mar 26.

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Rice University, Houston, TX, USA; Department of Bioengineering, Rice University, Houston, TX, USA; Neuorengineering Initiative, Rice University, Houston, TX, USA. Electronic address:

Implanted neural probes are among the most important techniques in both fundamental and clinical neuroscience. Despite great successes and promise, neural electrodes are technically limited by their scalability. A recent study by Obaid et al. demonstrated an innovative way to greatly scale up the channel count and density of neural electrode arrays.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tins.2020.03.001DOI Listing
May 2020

Arabidopsis RAD23B regulates pollen development by mediating degradation of KRP1.

J Exp Bot 2020 07;71(14):4010-4019

College of Biology, State Key Laboratory of Chemo/Biosensing and Chemometrics and Hunan Key Laboratory of Plant Functional Genomics and Developmental Regulation Hunan University, Changsha, P. R. China.

The ubiquitin (Ub)/26S proteasome system (UPS) plays a key role in plant growth, development, and survival by directing the turnover of numerous regulatory proteins. In the UPS, the ubiquitin-like (UBL) and ubiquitin-associated (UBA) domains function as hubs for ubiquitin-mediated protein degradation. Radiation sensitive 23 (RAD23), which has been identified as a UBL/UBA protein, contributes to the progression of the cell cycle, stress responses, ER proteolysis, and DNA repair. Here, we report that pollen development is arrested at the microspore stage in a rad23b null mutant. We demonstrate that RAD23B can directly interact with KIP-related protein 1 (KRP1) through its UBL-UBA domains. In addition, plants overexpressing KRP1 have defects in pollen development, which is a phenotype similar to the rad23b mutant. RAD23B promotes the degradation of KRP1 in vivo, which is accumulated following treatment with the proteasome inhibitor MG132. Our results indicate that RAD23B plays an important in pollen development by controlling the turnover of the key cell cycle protein, KRP1.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jxb/eraa167DOI Listing
July 2020

Reprogramming of sugar transport pathways in Escherichia coli using a permeabilized SecY protein-translocation channel.

Biotechnol Bioeng 2020 06 20;117(6):1738-1746. Epub 2020 Feb 20.

Beijing Key Laboratory of Bioprocess, College of Life Science and Technology, Beijing University of Chemical Technology, Beijing, China.

In the initial step of sugar metabolism, sugar-specific transporters play a decisive role in the passage of sugars through plasma membranes into cytoplasm. The SecY complex (SecYEG) in bacteria forms a membrane channel responsible for protein translocation. The present work shows that permeabilized SecY channels can be used as nonspecific sugar transporters in Escherichia coli. SecY with the plug domain deleted allowed the passage of glucose, fructose, mannose, xylose, and arabinose, and, with additional pore-ring mutations, facilitated lactose transport, indicating that sugar passage via permeabilized SecY was independent of sugar stereospecificity. The engineered E. coli showed rapid growth on a wide spectrum of monosaccharides and benefited from the elimination of transport saturation, improvement in sugar tolerance, reduction in competitive inhibition, and prevention of carbon catabolite repression, which are usually encountered with native sugar uptake systems. The SecY channel is widespread in prokaryotes, so other bacteria may also be engineered to utilize this system for sugar uptake. The SecY channel thus provides a unique sugar passageway for future development of robust cell factories for biotechnological applications.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/bit.27306DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7147117PMC
June 2020

Correlation between methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase gene polymorphism and oligoasthenospermia and the effects of folic acid supplementation on semen quality.

Transl Androl Urol 2019 Dec;8(6):678-685

Center for Reproductive Medicine, Ren Ji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200135, China.

Background: The present study investigated the correlation between 5,10-methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) C677T polymorphism and oligoasthenospermia, as well as the effects of folic acid supplementation on semen quality.

Methods: The present study was a case control study. The PCR-chip assay was applied to analyze the distribution characteristics of the frequencies and genotypes of the MTHFR C677T allele in 167 Han Chinese patients with idiopathic male infertility (including 86 patients with oligospermia and 81 patients with asthenospermia) and in 78 males with normal semen parameters. Moreover, homocysteine (Hcy) levels were assessed for the different groups. Semen quality was measured following three months of folic acid supplementation for the oligospermia and asthenospermia groups.

Results: The cytosine-thymine (CT) genotype (50% 39.5%) and the thymine-thymine (TT) genotype (51.2% 7.7%) carriers in the oligospermia group exhibited significantly higher percentages compared with those of the control group. The percentage of the CT genotype carriers in the asthenospermia group was significantly higher compared with that of the control group (59.3% 50%), while the frequency of the TT genotype was significantly increased (22.2% 7.7%). Furthermore, serum Hcy levels in the oligospermia and asthenospermia groups were significantly higher compared with those of the control group. The data also demonstrated that sperm density increased significantly following three months of folic acid supplementation to patients with oligospermia or asthenospermia. In these patients, the highest increase was noted for the subjects carrying the TT genotype.

Conclusions: The MTHFR C677T mutation and the elevated Hcy levels are important risk factors for the development of oligoasthenospermia. Folic acid supplementation can significantly improve sperm density.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.21037/tau.2019.11.17DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6987591PMC
December 2019

Study on the Preparation of Ionic Liquid Doped Chitosan/Cellulose-Based Electroactive Composites.

Int J Mol Sci 2019 Dec 9;20(24). Epub 2019 Dec 9.

State Key Laboratory of Pulp and Paper Engineering, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510641, China.

Electro-actuated polymer (EAP) can change its shape or volume under the action of an external electric field and shows similar behavioral characteristics with those of biological muscles, and so it has good application prospects in aerospace, bionic robots, and other fields. The properties of cellulose-based electroactive materials are similar to ionic EAP materials, although they have higher Young's modulus and lower energy consumption. However, cellulose-based electroactive materials have a more obvious deficiency-their actuation performance is often more significantly affected by ambient humidity due to the hygroscopicity caused by the strong hydrophilic structure of cellulose itself. Compared with cellulose, chitosan has good film-forming and water retention properties, and its compatibility with cellulose is very excellent. In this study, a chitosan/cellulose composite film doped with ionic liquid, 1-ethyl-3-methylimidazolium acetate ([EMIM]Ac), was prepared by co-dissolution and regeneration process using [EMIM]Ac as the solvent. After that, a conductive polymer, poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene)/poly (styrene sulfonate) (PEDOT: PSS), was deposited on the surface of the resulted composite, and then a kind of cellulose-based electroactive composites were obtained. The results showed that the end bending deformation amplitude of the resulted material was increased by 2.3 times higher than that of the pure cellulose film under the same conditions, and the maximum deformation amplitude reached 7.3 mm. The tensile strength of the chitosan/cellulose composite film was 53.68% higher than that of the cellulose film, and the Young's modulus was increased by 72.52%. Furthermore, in comparison with the pure cellulose film, the water retention of the composite film increased and the water absorption rate decreased obviously, which meant that the resistance of the material to changes in environmental humidity was greatly improved.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms20246198DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6940738PMC
December 2019

Can One Concurrently Record Electrical Spikes from Every Neuron in a Mammalian Brain?

Neuron 2019 09 5;103(6):1005-1015. Epub 2019 Sep 5.

Howard Hughes Medical Institutes, Janelia Research Campus, Ashburn, VA, USA; Department of Bioengineering, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, USA. Electronic address:

The classic approach to measure the spiking response of neurons involves the use of metal electrodes to record extracellular potentials. Starting over 60 years ago with a single recording site, this technology now extends to ever larger numbers and densities of sites. We argue, based on the mechanical and electrical properties of existing materials, estimates of signal-to-noise ratios, assumptions regarding extracellular space in the brain, and estimates of heat generation by the electronic interface, that it should be possible to fabricate rigid electrodes to concurrently record from essentially every neuron in the cortical mantle. This will involve fabrication with existing yet nontraditional materials and procedures. We further emphasize the need to advance materials for improved flexible electrodes as an essential advance to record from neurons in brainstem and spinal cord in moving animals.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neuron.2019.08.011DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6763354PMC
September 2019

Co-fermentation of and in Wheat Bran for Production of Vitamin B12.

Front Microbiol 2019 5;10:1541. Epub 2019 Jul 5.

Department of Food and Nutrition, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.

The present study investigated the effect of co-fermentation on vitamin B12 content and microbiological composition of wheat bran. DSM 20271 was used as the producer of vitamin while ATCC 14869 was selected to ensure the microbial safety of the bran dough. Fermentation trials were conducted in bioreactors to monitor and adjust the pH of the ferments. Vitamin B12 level reached 357 ± 8 ng/g dry weight (dw) after 1 day of pH-controlled fermentation with monoculture and remained stable thereafter. In co-fermentation with , slightly less vitamin B12 (255 ± 31 ng/g dw) was produced in 1 day and an effective inhibition of the growth of total and was obtained. On day 3, vitamin B12 content in pH-controlled co-fermentation increased to 332 ± 44 ng/g dw. On the other hand, without a pH control, co-fermentation resulted in a stronger inhibition of and but a lower level of vitamin B12 (183 ± 5 ng/g dw on day 3). These results demonstrated that wheat bran fermented by and can be a promising way to produce vitamin B12 fortified plant-origin food ingredients, which could reduce cereal waste streams and contribute to a more resilient food chain.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmicb.2019.01541DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6624789PMC
July 2019

Genome-Wide Identification and Characterization of the Cyclophilin Gene Family in the Nematophagous Fungus .

Int J Mol Sci 2019 Jun 18;20(12). Epub 2019 Jun 18.

The Provincial Key Lab of Plant Pathology of Hubei Province, College of Plant Science and Technology, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan 430070, China.

has been widely used as a commercial biocontrol agent for the control of plant parasitic nematodes. Whole genome analysis promotes the identification of functional genes and the exploration of their molecular mechanisms. The () gene family belongs to the immunophillin superfamily, and has a conserved cyclophilin-like domain (CLD). CYPs are widely identified in prokaryotes and eukaryotes, and can be divided into single- and multi-domain proteins. In the present study, 10 genes possessing the CLD, named , were identified from the genome of strain 36-1. Those 10 PlCYPs were predicted to have different cellular localizations in . Phylogenetic and gene structure analysis revealed the evolutionary differentiation of CYPs between Ascomycotina and Saccharomycotina fungi, but conservation within the Ascomycotina fungi. Motif and gene structure distributions further support the result of phylogenetic analysis. Each gene had a specific expression pattern in different development stages of and its parasitism stage on eggs of . In addition, the 10 genes exhibited different expression abundances in response to abiotic stresses, among which was highly expressed at a high temperature (35 °C), while was up-regulated under 5 mM of HO stress. Furthermore, the heterologous expression of and in enhanced the cellular tolerance against a high temperature and HO. In summary, our study indicates the potential functions of in virulence and the stress response, and also provides a frame for further analysis of the gene family in Ascomycotina fungi.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms20122978DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6627767PMC
June 2019

Parallel, minimally-invasive implantation of ultra-flexible neural electrode arrays.

J Neural Eng 2019 06 8;16(3):035001. Epub 2019 Feb 8.

Department of Biomedical Engineering, the University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78712, United States of America.

Objective: Implanted microelectrodes provide a unique means to directly interface with the nervous system but have been limited by the lack of stable functionality. There is growing evidence suggesting that substantially reducing the mechanical rigidity of neural electrodes promotes tissue compatibility and improves their recording stability in both the short- and long-term. However, the miniaturized dimensions and ultraflexibility desired for mitigating tissue responses preclude the probe's self-supported penetration into the brain tissue.

Approach: Here we demonstrate the high-throughput implantation of multi-shank ultraflexible neural electrode arrays with surgical footprints as small as 200 µm in a mouse model. This is achieved by using arrays of tungsten microwires as shuttle devices, and bio-dissolvable adhesive polyethylene glycol (PEG) to temporarily attach a shank onto each microwire.

Main Results: We show the ability to simultaneously deliver electrode arrays in designed patterns, to adjust the implantation locations of the shanks by need, to target different brain structures, and to control the surgical injury by reducing the microwire diameters to cellular scale.

Significance: These results provide a facile implantation method to apply ultraflexible neural probes in scalable neural recording.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/1741-2552/ab05b6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6506360PMC
June 2019

Developing Next-generation Brain Sensing Technologies - A Review.

IEEE Sens J 2019 ;19(22)

Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78712, USA.

Advances in sensing technology raise the possibility of creating neural interfaces that can more effectively restore or repair neural function and reveal fundamental properties of neural information processing. To realize the potential of these bioelectronic devices, it is necessary to understand the capabilities of emerging technologies and identify the best strategies to translate these technologies into products and therapies that will improve the lives of patients with neurological and other disorders. Here we discuss emerging technologies for sensing brain activity, anticipated challenges for translation, and perspectives for how to best transition these technologies from academic research labs to useful products for neuroscience researchers and human patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/jsen.2019.2931159DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7047830PMC
January 2019
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