Publications by authors named "Guo Li"

1,656 Publications

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Corn starch modification during endogenous malt amylases: The impact of synergistic hydrolysis time of α-amylase and β-amylase and limit dextrinase.

Int J Biol Macromol 2021 Sep 14;190:819-826. Epub 2021 Sep 14.

State Key Laboratory of Biobased Material and Green Papermaking, School of Food Sciences and Engineering, Qilu University of Technology, Shandong Academy of Sciences, Jinan, China. Electronic address:

To expand the utility of barley malts and decrease the cost of enzyme-modified starch production, the structural and physicochemical characteristics of corn starch modified with fresh barley malts at different hydrolysis time were investigated. The results indicated that compared to native starch, A chain (DP 6-12) of the enzyme-treated starches increased at hydrolysis time (≤12 h), but it decreased at hydrolysis time (>12 h). Inversely, B chains (DP > 13) decreased at hydrolysis time (≤12 h) and they generally increased at hydrolysis time (>12 h). The relative crystallinity decreased from 25.63% to 21.38% and 1047 cm/1022 cm reduced from 1.042 to 0.942 after endogenous malt amylases at hydrolysis time from 0 to 72 h, and the thermal degradation temperatures decreased from 323.19 to 295.94 °C, whereas the gelatinization temperatures slightly increased. The gel strength decreased at hydrolysis time less than 12 h, but it increased at hydrolysis time more than 12 h. The outcomings would provide a theoretical and applicative basis about how endogenous malt amylases with lower price modify starches to obtain desirable starch derivatives and industrial production.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2021.09.052DOI Listing
September 2021

Dynamics of the Upper Respiratory Tract Microbiota and its Association with Mortality in COVID-19.

Am J Respir Crit Care Med 2021 Sep 17. Epub 2021 Sep 17.

Beijing Institute of Genomics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China;

Rationale: Alteration of human respiratory microbiota had been observed in COVID-19. How the microbiota is associated with the prognosis in COVID-19 is unclear.

Objectives: To characterize the feature and dynamics of the respiratory microbiota and its associations with clinical features in COVID-19 patients. Methods:We conducted metatranscriptome sequencing on 588 longitudinal oropharyngeal swab specimens collected from 192 COVID-19 patients (including 39 deceased patients), and 95 healthy controls from the same geographic area. Meanwhile, the concentration of 27 cytokines and chemokines in plasma was measured for COVID-19 patients.

Measurements And Main Results: The upper respiratory tract (URT) microbiota in COVID-19 patients differed from that in healthy controls, while deceased patients possessed a more distinct microbiota, both on admission and before discharge/death. The alteration of URT microbiota showed a significant correlation with the concentration of proinflammatory cytokines and mortality. Specifically, Streptococcus-dominated microbiota was enriched in recovered patients, and show high temporal stability and resistance against pathogens. In contrast, the microbiota in deceased patients was more susceptible to secondary infections, and became more deviated from the normality after admission. Moreover, the abundance of S. parasanguinis on admission was significantly correlated with prognosis in non-severe patients (lower vs. higher abundance, odds ratio=7.80, [95% CI 1.70-42.05]). Conclusions:URT microbiota dysbiosis is a remarkable manifestation of COVID-19; its association with mortality suggests it may reflect the interplay between pathogens, symbionts, and the host immune status. Whether URT microbiota could be used as a biomarker for the diagnosis and prognosis of respiratory diseases merits further investigation. This article is open access and distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives License 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1164/rccm.202103-0814OCDOI Listing
September 2021

SMASH-U aetiological classification: a predictor of long-term functional outcome after intracerebral haemorrhage.

Eur J Neurol 2021 Sep 17. Epub 2021 Sep 17.

Department of Neurology, Tongji Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China.

Background: SMASH-U is a systematic aetiological classification system for intracerebral haemorrhage (ICH) proven to be a predictor of post-ICH haematoma expansion and mortality. However, its role in predicting functional outcome remains elusive. Therefore, we aimed to investigate whether SMASH-U is associated with long-term functional outcome after ICH and improves the accuracy of prediction when added to max-ICH score.

Methods: Consecutive acute ICH patients from 2012-2018 from the neurology department of Tongji Hospital were enrolled. ICH aetiology was classified according to the SMASH-U system. The association of SMASH-U with 12-month functional outcome after ICH and the predictive value were evaluated.

Results: Of 1938 ICH patients, the aetiology of 1295 (66.8%) patients were classified as hypertension, followed by amyloid angiopathy (n=250, 12.9%), undetermined (n=159, 8.2%), structural lesions (n=149, 7.7%), systemic disease (n=74, 3.8%) and medication (n=11, 0.6%). The baseline characteristics were different among the six aetiologies. In multivariate analysis, SMASH-U was proven to be a predictor of 12-month unfavourable functional outcome. When adding the SMASH-U system, the predictive performance of max-ICH score was improved (area under the receiver operating characteristic curve from 0.802 to 0.812, P=0.010) and the predictive accuracy was enhanced (integrated discrimination improvement (IDI): 1.60%, P<0.001; continuous net reclassification improvement (NRI): 28.16%, P<0.001; categorical NRI: 3.34%, P=0.004).

Conclusions: SMASH-U predicted long-term unfavourable functional outcomes after acute ICH and improved the accuracy of prediction when added to max-ICH score. Integrating the aetiology to a score model to predict the post-ICH outcome may be meaningful and worthy of further exploration.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ene.15111DOI Listing
September 2021

Increased Risk of Lymphoma in Men or the Elderly Infected with Tuberculosis.

Mediterr J Hematol Infect Dis 2021 1;13(1):e2021053. Epub 2021 Sep 1.

Department of Lymphoma, Xinjiang Medical University Cancer Hospital, Xinjiang, China.

Purpose: To identify factors associated with lymphoma in patients with prior infection.

Methods: A retrospective case-control analysis was performed in a highly tuberculosis (TB)-endemic area. Patients with a history of TB before the diagnosis of lymphoma were retrospectively identified. Inpatients with lymphoma (n=1,057) and pathologically confirmed benign diseases (n=12,916) were consecutively enrolled at Xinjiang Medical University Cancer Hospital between January 2016 and December 2019.

Results: The proportion of TB infection in patients with lymphoma (n=148, 14.0%) was significantly higher than that in the control (benign diseases) group (n=175, 1.4%) (p<0.0001). The frequencies of TB infection in patients with Hodgkin lymphoma, B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), and T/NK-cell NHL were 13.6%, 14.6%, and 11.9%, respectively. Relatively high proportions of TB infection were found in patients with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma (CLL/SLL), marginal zone B-cell lymphoma (MZBL), and diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), at 20.6%, 18.6% and 15.3%, respectively, compared to other subtypes of B-cell NHL. For T/NK-cell NHL, the proportions of TB infection in patients with peripheral T-cell lymphoma, not otherwise specified (PTCL, NOS), and anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) were 18.2% and 20%, respectively. The multivariate analysis revealed that male sex was an adverse risk factor for lymphoma after tubercular infection. In addition, male sex and older age (>60 years) were associated with B-cell NHL.

Conclusion: A high proportion of TB infection was found in patients with lymphoma. In TB-infected patients, older age and male sex were associated with susceptibility to lymphoma, suggesting that screening programmes might be useful for the early detection of lymphoma. Keywords Lymphoma; tuberculosis; Burkitt's lymphoma; diffuse large B lymphoma; Hodgkin's disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4084/MJHID.2021.053DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8425346PMC
September 2021

Temporal dynamics of mixed litter humification in an alpine treeline ecotone.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Sep 4;803:150122. Epub 2021 Sep 4.

Long-term Research Station of Alpine Ecosystems, Key laboratory of Ecological Forestry Engineering of Sichuan Province, Institute of Ecology & Forests, Sichuan Agricultural University, Chengdu 611130, China. Electronic address:

Loss of plant diversity affects mountain ecosystem properties and processes, yet few studies have focused on the impact of plant function type deficiency on mixed litter humification. To fill this knowledge gap, we conducted a 1279-day litterbag decomposition experiment with six plant functional types of foliar litter to determine the temporal dynamic characteristics of mixed litter humification in a coniferous forest (CF) and an alpine shrubland (AS). The results indicated that the humus concentrations, the net accumulations and their relative mixed effects (RME) of most types were higher in CF than those in AS at 146 days, and humus net accumulations fell to approximately -80% of the initial level within 1279 days. The RME of the total humus and humic acid concentrations exhibited a general change from synergistic to antagonistic effects over time, but the mixing of single plant functional type impeded the formation of fulvic acid due to consistently exhibited antagonistic effects. Ultimately, correlation analysis indicated that environmental factors (temperature, snow depth and freeze-thaw cycles) significantly hindered litter humification in the early stage, while some initial quality factors drove this process at a longer scale. Among these aspects, the concentrations of zinc, copper and iron, as well as acid-unhydrolyzable residue (AUR):nitrogen and AUR:phosphorous, stimulated humus accumulation, while water-soluble extractables, potassium, magnesium and aluminium hampered it. Deficiencies in a single plant functional type and vegetation type variations affected litter humification at the alpine treeline, which will further affect soil carbon sequestration, which is of great significance for understanding the material circulation of alpine ecosystems.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.150122DOI Listing
September 2021

Commentary on "Is simultaneous partial splenectomy during pediatric liver transplantation safe and effective for severe hypersplenism? A prospective cohort study" (Int J Surg 2021, 88:105926).

Int J Surg 2021 Sep 12:106097. Epub 2021 Sep 12.

Department of International Medical Services, Gansu Provincial Maternity and Child-care Hospital, Lanzhou, 730050, Gansu, China. Electronic address:

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijsu.2021.106097DOI Listing
September 2021

Protease-triggered bioresponsive drug delivery for the targeted theranostics of malignancy.

Acta Pharm Sin B 2021 Aug 24;11(8):2220-2242. Epub 2021 Jan 24.

Institute of Medical Engineering, Department of Biophysics, School of Basic Medical Science, Health Science Center, Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an 710061, China.

Proteases have a fundamental role in maintaining physiological homeostasis, but their dysregulation results in severe activity imbalance and pathological conditions, including cancer onset, progression, invasion, and metastasis. This striking importance plus superior biological recognition and catalytic performance of proteases, combining with the excellent physicochemical characteristics of nanomaterials, results in enzyme-activated nano-drug delivery systems (nanoDDS) that perform theranostic functions in highly specific response to the tumor phenotype stimulus. In the tutorial review, the key advances of protease-responsive nanoDDS in the specific diagnosis and targeted treatment for malignancies are emphatically classified according to the effector biomolecule types, on the premise of summarizing the structure and function of each protease. Subsequently, the incomplete matching and recognition between enzyme and substrate, structural design complexity, volume production, and toxicological issues related to the nanocomposites are highlighted to clarify the direction of efforts in nanotheranostics. This will facilitate the promotion of nanotechnology in the management of malignant tumors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.apsb.2021.01.017DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8424222PMC
August 2021

A Joint Framework for Denoising and Estimating Diffusion Kurtosis Tensors Using Multiple Prior Information.

IEEE Trans Med Imaging 2021 Sep 14;PP. Epub 2021 Sep 14.

Diffusion kurtosis imaging (DKI) has been shown to be valuable in a wide range of neuroscientific and clinical applications. However, reliable estimation of DKI tensors is often compromised by noise, especially for the kurtosis tensor (KT). Here, we propose a joint denoising and estimating framework that integrates multiple sources of prior information, including nonlocal structural self-similarity (NSS), local spatial smoothness (LSS), physical relevance (PR) of the DKI model, and noise characteristics of magnitude diffusion MRI (dMRI) images for improved estimation of DKI tensors. The local and nonlocal spatial smoothing constraints are complementary to each other, making the proposed framework highly effective in reducing the noise fluctuations on DKI tensors, especially KT. As an additional refinement, we propose to impose a physically relevant constraint within our joint denoising and estimation framework. We further adopt the first-moment noise-corrected fitting model (M1NCM) to remove the noncentral χ-distribution noise bias. The effectiveness of integrating multiple sources of priors into the joint framework is verified by comparing the proposed M1NCM-NSS-LSS-PR method with various versions of M1NCM-based estimators and two state-of-the-art methods. Results show that the proposed method outperformed the compared methods in simulations and in-vivo dMRI datasets of both spatially stationary and nonstationary noise distributions. The in-vivo experiments also show that the proposed M1NCM-NSS-LSS-PR method was robust to the number of diffusion directions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/TMI.2021.3112515DOI Listing
September 2021

Magnetic resonance imaging-based radiogenomics analysis for predicting prognosis and gene expression profile in advanced nasopharyngeal carcinoma.

Head Neck 2021 Sep 13. Epub 2021 Sep 13.

Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, Xiangya Hospital, Central South University, Changsha, China.

Background: To establish a radiomics nomogram for survival prediction and determine if genomic data were related to radiomics signature in advanced nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC).

Methods: Radiomics features were extracted from contrast-enhanced T1-weighted images (CE-T1WI) in 316 patients. A progression-free survival (PFS) nomogram was developed and validated by the combination of the radiomics signature and clinicopathologic factors. Whole transcriptomics sequencing was performed in pretreatment tumor samples; correlation of gene expression and radiomics signature was further investigated.

Results: A 24-feature-combined radiomics signature was highly correlated with PFS; its integration with clinical predictors showed good prediction performance in the training and the validation cohort (C-index: 0.80 and 0.73). A significant correlation was observed between certain gene expression and Rad-score, especially the mRNA expression of CDKL2, PLIN5, and SPAG1.

Conclusion: As a noninvasive method, the MRI-based radiomics signature might enable the pretreatment prediction of prognosis and gene expressions profile in advanced NPC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/hed.26867DOI Listing
September 2021

A Multicenter Study of Prevalence and Risk Factors for Allergic Rhinitis in Primary School Children in 5 Cities of Hubei Province, China.

Int Arch Allergy Immunol 2021 Aug 6:1-11. Epub 2021 Aug 6.

Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, Renmin Hospital of Wuhan University, Wuhan, China.

Background: Few data are available concerning the prevalence and risk factors for allergic rhinitis (AR) in school children in Hubei Province which is located in the central part of China. This study investigated the epidemiological features of AR among school children in Hubei Province.

Methods: A cross-sectional questionnaire survey on AR in school children was carried out in 5 cities in Hubei Province by cluster sampling from June to September 2018. Questionnaires were filled out by children and their parents jointly. The diagnostic criteria of AR were according to the SFAR. Questions from the questionnaire were used to examine the pattern of AR. Logistic regression analysis was used to assess the risk factors for childhood allergies.

Results: The total prevalence rate of AR was 16.16%, with 24.31% (Wuhan), 4.34% (Xiangyang), 4.31% (Tianmen), 10.92% (Jingmen), and 11.42% (Huangshi), respectively. The prevalence of AR was positively correlated with gross domestic product per capita (p < 0.05). Multivariate analysis revealed that male, city of Wuhan, family history of allergy, food allergy, drug allergy, air purifier, exposure to dust, living in towns or urban area before 2 years old, maternal age for 26-35 years old, and frequent application of antibiotics increased the risk of AR, while daily outdoor time for 1-2 h, daily sleeping time >8 h, siblings, and breastfeeding for >6 months reduced the risk significantly.

Conclusion: We found the apparent geographic variation of children allergies in Hubei Province. Both genetic and environment factors had impacts on the prevalence of AR in school children. Public policies should specifically target at the local risk factors for different areas.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000517948DOI Listing
August 2021

Equity Structure, Strategic Investment Psychology, and Performance in China's Green Economy Context.

Front Psychol 2021 25;12:707582. Epub 2021 Aug 25.

Department of Business Administration, Cheng Shiu University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan.

This study empirically tests the impacts of equity structure on strategic investment psychology in green affairs in R&D vs. Marketing dimensions and company performance. Based on data from Chinese high-tech industry listed companies, the empirical results show that: (1) the largest shareholder's shareholding ratio has a positive effect on marketing investment psychology and a negative impact on R&D investment psychology, (2) other large shareholders' shareholding ratio are positive related to R&D investment psychology; (3) R&D investment psychology has a negative effect and marketing investment psychology has a positive influence on the current performance; (4) equity counterbalance is positive related to R&D investment psychology and has a negative effect on the current performance. This study contributes to the literature of corporate governance on sustainability issue by providing a new psychological perspective. The results also provide an important guidance for the corporate governance practice in green economies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.707582DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8423898PMC
August 2021

The challenge of refractory peritonitis in peritoneal dialysis patients-whether the "bacteria hiding law" is evident.

Asian J Surg 2021 Sep 9. Epub 2021 Sep 9.

Department of Nephrology, Affiliated Hospital of Hebei University, Baoding, 071000, Hebei, China. Electronic address:

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.asjsur.2021.08.047DOI Listing
September 2021

Placement of wound drain after anterior circulation aneurysm clipping: a single-center retrospective study.

World Neurosurg 2021 Sep 7. Epub 2021 Sep 7.

Department of Neurosurgery, Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, 169# Donghu Road, Wuhan, 430071, P.R. China. Electronic address:

Objective: Wound drain used to be a routine procedure after craniotomy for aneurysm clipping, although this was not based on clinical evidence. The purpose of our study was to determine the necessity of wound drain placement after anterior circulation aneurysm surgery.

Method: Retrospective analysis of patients with anterior circulation aneurysms treated by clipping in the Department of Neurosurgery, Wuhan University Zhongnan hospital from January 2019 to December 2019. Demographic and clinical data, including age, sex, body mass index (BMI), disease history, results of the laboratory and imaging examinations, and surgical logs, were reviewed.

Result: 236 patients (90 male and 146 female) were included in the analysis and were divided into a Drain group and No Drain group according to whether postoperative wound drainage was applied. There was no statistical difference in the incidence of postoperative extradural hematoma between patients in two groups. However, the incidence of postoperative meningitis was higher in the Drain group than in the No Drain group (9.09% vs. 1.59%, p=0.009), and the total length of stay and postoperative length of stay in the Drain group were also more extended than in No Drain group (17.32±6.45 vs. 14.43±5.75, p=0.005; 12.83±5.07 vs. 9.82±4.50, p=0.007, respectively).

Conclusion: Postoperative wound drain did not significantly reduce the incidence of extradural hematoma after anterior circulation aneurysm surgery. On the contrary, it may be associated with an increased incidence of postoperative meningitis and length of stay. Given these findings, the postoperative drain should be maintained cautiously and meet more rigorous application criteria.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.wneu.2021.08.149DOI Listing
September 2021

Structural characterization of the Plasmodium falciparum lactate transporter PfFNT alone and in complex with antimalarial compound MMV007839 reveals its inhibition mechanism.

PLoS Biol 2021 Sep 9;19(9):e3001386. Epub 2021 Sep 9.

Department of Obstetrics, Key Laboratory of Birth Defects and Related Disease of Women and Children of MOE, State Key Laboratory of Biotherapy, West China Second Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu, China.

Plasmodium falciparum, the deadliest causal agent of malaria, caused more than half of the 229 million malaria cases worldwide in 2019. The emergence and spreading of frontline drug-resistant Plasmodium strains are challenging to overcome in the battle against malaria and raise urgent demands for novel antimalarial agents. The P. falciparum formate-nitrite transporter (PfFNT) is a potential drug target due to its housekeeping role in lactate efflux during the intraerythrocytic stage. Targeting PfFNT, MMV007839 was identified as a lead compound that kills parasites at submicromolar concentrations. Here, we present 2 cryogenic-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) structures of PfFNT, one with the protein in its apo form and one with it in complex with MMV007839, both at 2.3 Å resolution. Benefiting from the high-resolution structures, our study provides the molecular basis for both the lactate transport of PfFNT and the inhibition mechanism of MMV007839, which facilitates further antimalarial drug design.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pbio.3001386DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8428694PMC
September 2021

Bisabolane-type sesquiterpenoids: Structural diversity and biological activity.

Phytochemistry 2021 Sep 4;192:112927. Epub 2021 Sep 4.

State Key Laboratory of Southwestern Chinese Medicine Resources, Chengdu University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Chengdu, 611137, China; School of Pharmacy, Chengdu University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Chengdu, 611137, China; Institute of Innovative Medicine Ingredients of Southwest Specialty Medicinal Materials, Chengdu University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Chengdu, 611137, China. Electronic address:

Bisabolane-type sesquiterpenoids, a class of monocyclic sesquiterpenoids, are widely distributed in nature and have a variety of biological activities. To provide a reference for the further research and development of these compounds, the phytochemical and biological properties of natural bisabolane-type sesquiterpenoids (356 compounds in total) isolated between 1985 and 2020 from 24 families, primarily Compositae, Zingiberaceae, Aspergillaceae, Halichondriidae, and Aplysiidae were reviewed. In vitro and in vivo studies have indicated that antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and cytotoxic effects are the most commonly reported pharmacological properties of bisabolane-type sesquiterpenoids. Owing to their extensive significant effects, a lot of traditional medicines containing this type of compounds have been used for a long history. Thus, bisabolane-type sesquiterpenoids are a rich source of important natural products, which show great potential for the development of new drugs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.phytochem.2021.112927DOI Listing
September 2021

Characterization of the Genitourinary Microbiome of 1,165 Middle-Aged and Elderly Healthy Individuals.

Front Microbiol 2021 19;12:673969. Epub 2021 Aug 19.

Department of Urology, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Shenzhen University (Luohu Hospital Group), Shenzhen, China.

Accumulated evidence shows that complex microbial communities resides in the healthy human urinary tract and can change in urological disorders. However, there lacks a comprehensive profiling of the genitourinary microbiota in healthy cohort. Here, we performed 16S rRNA gene sequencing of midstream urine specimens from 1,172 middle-aged and elderly healthy individuals. The core microbiota included 6 dominant genera (mean relative abundance >5%), including , , , , , and , and 131 low-abundance genera (0.01-5%), displaying a distinct microbiome profiles to that of host-matched gut microbiota. The composition and diversity of genitourinary microbiome (GM) were distinct between genders and may fluctuate with ages. Several urotypes were identified by the stratification of microbiome profiles, which were mainly dominated by the six most predominant genera. The prevalence of urotypes was disparate between genders, and the male sample additionally harbored other urotypes dominated by , , , or . , , and were co-occurred and co-abundant, and they may play crucial roles as keystone genera and be associated with increased microbial diversity. Our results delineated the microbial structure and diversity landscape of the GM in healthy middle-aged and elderly adults and provided insights into the influence of gender and age to it.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmicb.2021.673969DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8417382PMC
August 2021

MEF2C alleviates acute lung injury in cecal ligation and puncture (CLP)-induced sepsis rats by up-regulating AQP1.

Allergol Immunopathol (Madr) 2021 1;49(5):117-124. Epub 2021 Sep 1.

Department of Critical Care Medicine, The Affiliated Hospital of Zunyi Medical University, Zunyi, Guizhou 563000, China;

Background: Sepsis is a systemic inflammatory response syndrome and leads to patient's death. To investigate the effect of myocyte enhancer factor 2 (MEF2C) on acute lung injury (ALI) with sepsis and its possible mechanism.

Material And Methods: The cecal ligation and puncture (CLP)-induced sepsis rat model was established. The lung injury was determined by lung wet-dry weight ratio, the concentration of inflammatory cytokines, including tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), Interlukin (IL)-6, IL-1β, and IL-10, were measured by the enzyme-linked-immunosorbent serologic assay kit. The cell apoptosis was detected by TUNEL staining assay.

Results: Interestingly, MEF2C was down-regulated in this model. Moreover, adeno-associated virus (AAV)-MEF2C treatment markedly suppressed TNF-α, IL-1β, and IL-6 concentrations but promoted IL-10 concentration in serum in CLP-challenged rats. Besides, overexpression of MEF2C alleviates CLP-induced lung injury. Interestingly, AAV-MEF2C treatment was confirmed to suppress apoptosis in CLP-induced sepsis rats as well as promote aquaporin APQ1 expression. Mechanistically, the rescue experiments indicated that MEF2C alleviated CLP-induced lung inflammatory response and apoptosis via up-regulating AQP1.

Conclusion: In summary, overexpression of MEF2C suppressed CLP-induced lung inflamma-tory response and apoptosis via up-regulating AQP1, providing a novel therapeutic target for sepsis-induced ALI.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.15586/aei.v49i5.477DOI Listing
September 2021

A potentially valuable nano graphene oxide/USPIO tumor diagnosis and treatment system.

Mater Sci Eng C Mater Biol Appl 2021 Sep 3;128:112293. Epub 2021 Jul 3.

School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Guangxi Medical University, No. 22 Shuangyong Road, Nanning 530021, Guangxi, China. Electronic address:

Due to increased requirements for precision cancer treatment, cancer chemotherapy and combination therapies have gradually developed in the direction of diagnosis and treatment integration. In this study, a non-toxic nano carrier that demonstrates integrated MRI signal enhancing performance, as well as better chemotherapy and photothermal conversion performance, was prepared and characterized. Furthermore, the carrier was used to construct an integrated system of tumor diagnosis and treatment. Our in vitro studies showed that this system has a considerable inhibition effect on tumor cells during the treatment of chemotherapy when combined with PTT, and in vivo studies showed that the system could improve the MRI signal of the tumor site with application of a safe dosage. Thus, this system based on NGO/USPIO has the potential to be a multi-functional nano drug delivery system integrating diagnosis and treatment benefits and applications that are worthy of further research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.msec.2021.112293DOI Listing
September 2021

[Production of antimicrobial peptide (Oxysterlin 1) in Escherichia coli with ELP self-cleavage tag].

Sheng Wu Gong Cheng Xue Bao 2021 Aug;37(8):2915-2923

College of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology, Donghua University, Shanghai 201620, China.

Antimicrobial peptides are the most promising alternatives to antibiotics. However, the strategy of producing antimicrobial peptides by recombinant technology is complicated and expensive, which is not conducive to the large-scale production. Oxysterlin 1 is a novel type of cecropin antimicrobial peptide mainly targeting on Gram-negative bacteria and is of low cytotoxicity. In this study, a simple and cost-effective method was developed to produce Oxysterlin 1 in Escherichia coli. The Oxysterlin 1 gene was cloned into a plasmid containing elastin-like polypeptide (ELP) and protein splicing elements (intein) to construct the recombinant expression plasmid (pET-ELP-I-Oxysterlin 1). The recombinant protein was mainly expressed in soluble form in E. coli, and then the target peptide can be purified with a simple salting out method followed by pH changing. The final yield of Oxysterlin 1 was about 1.2 mg/L, and the subsequent antimicrobial experiment showed the expected antimicrobial activity. This study holds promise for large-scale production of antimicrobial peptides and the in-depth study of its antimicrobial mechanism.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.13345/j.cjb.200625DOI Listing
August 2021

Mechanism of piperine in affecting apoptosis and proliferation of gastric cancer cells via ROS-mitochondria-associated signalling pathway.

J Cell Mol Med 2021 Aug 31. Epub 2021 Aug 31.

Department of Pharmacy, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Jiaxing University, Jiaxing, China.

Piperine (PIP), the main active ingredient in pepper, belongs to the cinnamamide alkaloid. PIP has been found to have functions, including anti-oxidation, immune regulation, anti-tumour and promotion of drug metabolism. The present study was mainly designed to reveal the anti-tumour effect of PIP against gastric cancer and the relevant mechanism. In brief, the undifferentiated human gastric cancer cell HGC-27 was used, which was treated with different concentrations of PIP. As a result, PIP could inhibit proliferation and induce apoptosis of HGC-27 cells in a dose-dependent manner. The mechanism of PIP was associated with ROS increase and mitochondrial damage, simultaneously, the expression of key proteins of apoptosis was affected, including Bcl-2, Bax, Cyt-c, Caspase-9 and Caspase-3. Pre-treatment of ROS scavenger NAC HGC-27 cells could significantly reduce PIP-induced apoptosis and inhibit the activation of apoptotic signals. Consistently, PIP could induce ROS to increase and activate apoptotic signals in the animal model. Therefore, the present study showed that PIP can induce the generation of ROS, thereby promoting the activation of mitochondrial apoptotic pathway and exerting anti-tumour effects.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jcmm.16891DOI Listing
August 2021

Comprehensive evaluation of protein-coding sORFs prediction based on a random sequence strategy.

Front Biosci (Landmark Ed) 2021 Aug;26(8):272-278

Shandong Key Laboratory of Biophysics, Institute of Biophysics, Dezhou University, 253023 Dezhou, Shandong, China.

: Small open reading frames (sORFs) with protein-coding ability present unprecedented challenge for genome annotation because of their short sequence and low expression level. In the past decade, only several prediction methods have been proposed for discovery of protein-coding sORFs and lack of objective and uniform negative datasets has become an important obstacle to sORFs prediction. The prediction efficiency of current sORFs prediction methods needs to be further evaluated to provide better research strategies for protein-coding sORFs discovery. : In this work, nine mainstream existing methods for predicting protein-coding potential of ORFs are comprehensively evaluated based on a random sequence strategy. : The results show that the current methods perform poorly on different sORFs datasets. For comparison, a sequence based prediction algorithm trained on prokaryotic sORFs is proposed and its better prediction performance indicates that the random sequence strategy can provide feasible ideas for protein-coding sORFs predictions. : As a kind of important functional genomic element, discovery of protein-coding sORFs has shed light on the dark proteomes. This evaluation work indicates that there is an urgent need for developing specialized prediction tools for protein-coding sORFs in both eukaryotes and prokaryotes. It is expected that the present work may provide novel ideas for future sORFs researches.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.52586/4943DOI Listing
August 2021

1-year outcomes in hospital survivors with COVID-19: a longitudinal cohort study.

Lancet 2021 08;398(10302):747-758

Department of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, National Center for Respiratory Medicine, Center of Respiratory Medicine, National Clinical Research Center for Respiratory Diseases, China-Japan Friendship Hospital, Beijing, China; Institute of Respiratory Medicine, Chinese Academy of Medical Science, Beijing, China; Tsinghua University-Peking University Joint Center for Life Sciences, Beijing, China. Electronic address:

Background: The full range of long-term health consequences of COVID-19 in patients who are discharged from hospital is largely unclear. The aim of our study was to comprehensively compare consequences between 6 months and 12 months after symptom onset among hospital survivors with COVID-19.

Methods: We undertook an ambidirectional cohort study of COVID-19 survivors who had been discharged from Jin Yin-tan Hospital (Wuhan, China) between Jan 7 and May 29, 2020. At 6-month and 12-month follow-up visit, survivors were interviewed with questionnaires on symptoms and health-related quality of life (HRQoL), and received a physical examination, a 6-min walking test, and laboratory tests. They were required to report their health-care use after discharge and work status at the 12-month visit. Survivors who had completed pulmonary function tests or had lung radiographic abnormality at 6 months were given the corresponding tests at 12 months. Non-COVID-19 participants (controls) matched for age, sex, and comorbidities were interviewed and completed questionnaires to assess prevalent symptoms and HRQoL. The primary outcomes were symptoms, modified British Medical Research Council (mMRC) score, HRQoL, and distance walked in 6 min (6MWD). Multivariable adjusted logistic regression models were used to evaluate the risk factors of 12-month outcomes.

Findings: 1276 COVID-19 survivors completed both visits. The median age of patients was 59·0 years (IQR 49·0-67·0) and 681 (53%) were men. The median follow-up time was 185·0 days (IQR 175·0-198·0) for the 6-month visit and 349·0 days (337·0-361·0) for the 12-month visit after symptom onset. The proportion of patients with at least one sequelae symptom decreased from 68% (831/1227) at 6 months to 49% (620/1272) at 12 months (p<0·0001). The proportion of patients with dyspnoea, characterised by mMRC score of 1 or more, slightly increased from 26% (313/1185) at 6-month visit to 30% (380/1271) at 12-month visit (p=0·014). Additionally, more patients had anxiety or depression at 12-month visit (26% [331/1271] at 12-month visit vs 23% [274/1187] at 6-month visit; p=0·015). No significant difference on 6MWD was observed between 6 months and 12 months. 88% (422/479) of patients who were employed before COVID-19 had returned to their original work at 12 months. Compared with men, women had an odds ratio of 1·43 (95% CI 1·04-1·96) for fatigue or muscle weakness, 2·00 (1·48-2·69) for anxiety or depression, and 2·97 (1·50-5·88) for diffusion impairment. Matched COVID-19 survivors at 12 months had more problems with mobility, pain or discomfort, and anxiety or depression, and had more prevalent symptoms than did controls.

Interpretation: Most COVID-19 survivors had a good physical and functional recovery during 1-year follow-up, and had returned to their original work and life. The health status in our cohort of COVID-19 survivors at 12 months was still lower than that in the control population.

Funding: Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences Innovation Fund for Medical Sciences, the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the National Key Research and Development Program of China, Major Projects of National Science and Technology on New Drug Creation and Development of Pulmonary Tuberculosis, the China Evergrande Group, Jack Ma Foundation, Sino Biopharmaceutical, Ping An Insurance (Group), and New Sunshine Charity Foundation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(21)01755-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8389999PMC
August 2021

An Improved Feature Selection Method Based on Random Forest Algorithm for Wind Turbine Condition Monitoring.

Sensors (Basel) 2021 Aug 22;21(16). Epub 2021 Aug 22.

School of Artificial and Intelligence, Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, Beijing 100876, China.

Feature selection and dimensionality reduction are important for the performance of wind turbine condition monitoring models using supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) data. In this paper, an improved random forest algorithm, namely Feature Simplification Random Forest (FS_RF), is proposed, which is capable of identifying features closely correlated with wind turbine working conditions. The Euclidian distances are employed to distinguish the weight of the same feature among different samples, and its importance is measured by means of the random forest algorithm. The selected features are finally verified by a two-layer gated recurrent unit (GRU) neural network facilitating condition monitoring. The experimental results demonstrate the capacity and effectiveness of the proposed method for wind turbine condition monitoring.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/s21165654DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8402606PMC
August 2021

encodes a STERILE ALPHA MOTIF-containing protein that controls root growth angle in barley and wheat.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2021 Aug;118(35)

Institute of Crop Sciences and Resource Conservation, Crop Functional Genomics, University of Bonn, 53113 Bonn, Germany;

The root growth angle defines how roots grow toward the gravity vector and is among the most important determinants of root system architecture. It controls water uptake capacity, nutrient use efficiency, stress resilience, and, as a consequence, yield of crop plants. We demonstrated that the () mutant of barley exhibits steeper root growth of seminal and lateral roots and an auxin-independent higher responsiveness to gravity compared to wild-type plants. We cloned the gene by a combination of bulked-segregant analysis and whole genome sequencing. Subsequent validation experiments by an independent CRISPR/Cas9 mutant allele demonstrated that encodes a STERILE ALPHA MOTIF domain-containing protein. In situ hybridization experiments illustrated that is expressed from the root cap to the elongation zone. We demonstrated the evolutionary conserved role of in root growth angle control between barley and wheat by knocking out the orthologs in the A and B genomes of tetraploid durum wheat. By combining laser capture microdissection with RNA sequencing, we observed that seven expansin genes were transcriptionally down-regulated in the elongation zone. This is consistent with a role of in this region of the root where the effect of gravity sensing is executed by differential cell elongation. Our findings suggest that is an evolutionary conserved regulator of root growth angle in barley and wheat that could be a valuable target for root-based crop improvement strategies in cereals.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2101526118DOI Listing
August 2021

Low-Temperature Gas Plasma Combined with Antibiotics for the Reduction of Methicillin-Resistant Biofilm Both In Vitro and In Vivo.

Life (Basel) 2021 Aug 13;11(8). Epub 2021 Aug 13.

Center for Plasma Biomedicine, State Key Laboratory of Electrical Insulation and Power Equipment, Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an 710049, China.

Biofilm infections in wounds seriously delay the healing process, and methicillin-resistant is a major cause of wound infections. In addition to inactivating micro-organisms, low-temperature gas plasma can restore the sensitivity of pathogenic microbes to antibiotics. However, the combined treatment has not been applied to infectious diseases. In this study, low-temperature gas plasma treatment promoted the effects of different antibiotics on the reduction of biofilms in vitro. Low-temperature gas plasma combined with rifampicin also effectively reduced the cells in biofilms in the murine wound infection model. The blood and histochemical analysis demonstrated the biosafety of the combined treatment. Our findings demonstrated that low-temperature gas plasma combined with antibiotics is a promising therapeutic strategy for wound infections.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/life11080828DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8400093PMC
August 2021

Plasma-Activated Saline Promotes Antibiotic Treatment of Systemic Methicillin-Resistant Infection.

Antibiotics (Basel) 2021 Aug 22;10(8). Epub 2021 Aug 22.

State Key Laboratory of Electrical Insulation and Power Equipment, Center for Plasma Biomedicine, Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an 710049, China.

Systemic infections caused by methicillin-resistant (MRSA) are life-threatening due to their strong multidrug resistance, especially since the biofilms formed by MRSA are more difficult to inactivate by antibiotics, causing long term recurrence of infection. Plasma-activated saline (PAS), a derived form of cold atmospheric-pressure plasma, can effectively inactivate bacteria and cancer cells and has been applied to sterilization and cancer treatment. Previous studies have demonstrated that the pretreatment of MRSA with PAS could promote the action of antibiotics. Here, the PAS was used as an antibiotic adjuvant to promote the inactivation of MRSA biofilms by rifampicin and vancomycin, and the combined treatment reduced approximately 6.0-log MRSA cells in biofilms. The plasma-activated saline and rifampicin synergistically and effectively reduced the systemic infection in the murine model. The histochemical analysis and the blood hematological and biochemical test demonstrated that the combined treatment with plasma-activated saline and rifampicin improved the blood hematological and biochemical parameters of infected mice by reducing the infection. Therefore, PAS based on plasma technology represents a new strategy for the treatment of infectious disease caused by multidrug-resistant bacteria and alleviating antibiotic resistance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics10081018DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8388904PMC
August 2021

Combined intermittent fasting and ERK inhibition enhance the anti-tumor effects of chemotherapy via the GSK3β-SIRT7 axis.

Nat Commun 2021 08 25;12(1):5058. Epub 2021 Aug 25.

Shenzhen Key Laboratory of Systemic Aging and Intervention (SKL-SAI), School of Basic Medical Sciences, Shenzhen University, Shenzhen, China.

Dietary interventions such as intermittent fasting (IF) have emerged as an attractive strategy for cancer therapies; therefore, understanding the underlying molecular mechanisms is pivotal. Here, we find SIRT7 decline markedly attenuates the anti-tumor effect of IF. Mechanistically, AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) phosphorylating SIRT7 at T263 triggers further phosphorylation at T255/S259 by glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK3β), which stabilizes SIRT7 by decoupling E3 ligase UBR5. SIRT7 hyperphosphorylation achieves anti-tumor activity by disrupting the SKP2-SCF E3 ligase, thus preventing SKP2-mediated K63-linked AKT polyubiquitination and subsequent activation. In contrast, GSK3β-SIRT7 axis is inhibited by EGF/ERK2 signaling, with ERK2 inactivating GSK3β, thus accelerating SIRT7 degradation. Unfavorably, glucose deprivation or chemotherapy hijacks the GSK3β-SIRT7 axis via ERK2, thus activating AKT and ensuring survival. Notably, Trametinib, an FDA-approved MEK inhibitor, enhances the efficacy of combination therapy with doxorubicin and IF. Overall, we have revealed the GSK3β-SIRT7 axis that must be fine-tuned in the face of the energetic and oncogenic stresses in malignancy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-25274-3DOI Listing
August 2021

Optimizing oropharyngeal cancer management by using proton beam therapy: trends of cost-effectiveness.

BMC Cancer 2021 Aug 21;21(1):944. Epub 2021 Aug 21.

State Key Laboratory of Oncology in South China and Collaborative Innovation Center for Cancer Medicine, Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center, 651 Dongfeng East Road, Guangzhou, Guangdong, 510060, P. R. China.

Background: Proton beam therapy (PBT) is a new-emerging cancer treatment in China but its treatment costs are high and not yet covered by Chinese public medical insurance. The advanced form of PBT, intensity-modulated proton radiation therapy (IMPT), has been confirmed to reduce normal tissue complication probability (NTCP) as compared to conventional intensity-modulated photon-radiation therapy (IMRT) in patients with oropharyngeal cancer (OPC). Herein, we evaluated the cost-effectiveness and applicability of IMPT versus IMRT for OPC patients in China, aiming at guiding the proper use of PBT.

Methods: A 7-state Markov model was designed for analysis. Base-case evaluation was performed on a 56-year-old (median age of OPC in China) patient under the assumption that IMPT could provide a 25% NTCP-reduction in long-term symptomatic dysphagia and xerostomia. Model robustness was examined using probabilistic sensitivity analysis, cohort analysis, and tornado diagram. One-way sensitivity analyses were conducted to identify the cost-effective scenarios. IMPT was considered as cost-effective if the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) was below the societal willingness-to-pay (WTP) threshold.

Results: Compared with IMRT, IMPT provided an extra 0.205 quality-adjusted life-year (QALY) at an additional cost of 34,926.6 US dollars ($), and had an ICER of $170,082.4/ QALY for the base case. At the current WTP of China ($33,558 / QALY) and a current IMPT treatment costs of $50,000, IMPT should provide a minimum NTCP-reduction of 47.5, 50.8, 55.6, 63.3 and 77.2% to be considered cost-effective for patient age levels of 10, 20, 30, 40 and 50-year-old, respectively. For patients at the median age level, reducing the current IMPT costs ($50,000) to a $30,000 level would make the minimum NTCP-reduction threshold for "cost-effective" decrease from 91.4 to 44.6%, at the current WTP of China (from 69.0 to 33.5%, at a WTP of $50,000 / QALY; and from 39.7 to 19.1%, at a WTP of $100,000 / QALY).

Conclusions: Cost-effective scenarios of PBT exist in Chinese OPC patients at the current WTP of China. Considering a potential upcoming increase in PBT use in China, such cost-effective scenarios may further expand if a decrease of proton treatment costs occurs or an increase of WTP level.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12885-021-08638-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8380358PMC
August 2021

Both Ends of Values in the Hemoglobin Spectrum Are Associated with Adverse Stroke Outcomes.

Cerebrovasc Dis 2021 Aug 18:1-9. Epub 2021 Aug 18.

Department of Neurology, Beijing Tiantan Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing, China.

Background And Purpose: Existing studies on the association between hemoglobin values and stroke outcomes mostly focus on the lower side and mortality, often the only and primary endpoint. The current study was conducted to assess the association between hemoglobin concentration and a variety of poor stroke outcomes in patients with acute ischemic stroke.

Methods: We studied 8,321 patients enrolled in the China National Stroke Registry (CNSR) between 2007 and 2008. Patients were divided into 7 groups, and a logistic regression model was used to evaluate the association. Endpoints of interest included 1-year all-cause mortality, stroke recurrence, combined endpoint, and stroke disability. Stroke disability was defined as a modified Rankin Scale of 2-6.

Results: Patients with low and high hemoglobin values (≤11.6 g/dL and >16.1 g/dL) had higher proportion of poststroke adverse events than those in other groups. As compared with the fourth group of hemoglobin values of 13.5-14.2 g/dL, the adjusted odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence interval (CI) of low hemoglobin values (≤11.6 g/dL) were 2.25 (1.72-2.93) for all-cause mortality, 1.30 (1.04-1.61) for stroke recurrence, 1.63 (1.33-2.01) for combined endpoint, and 1.37 (1.12-1.67) for stroke disability, respectively. And, the ORs of high hemoglobin values (>16.1 g/dL) for adverse stroke outcomes were 1.72 (1.25-2.37), 1.43 (1.13-1.82), 1.43 (1.13-1.81), and 1.31 (1.06-1.63), respectively. Stratified analysis showed significant interactions between sex and categories of hemoglobin values for all-cause mortality (p = 0.05), stroke recurrence (p = 0.03), and combined endpoint (p = 0.01) but not for stroke disability (p = 0.24).

Conclusions: Our study found both low and high hemoglobin values were associated with adverse stroke outcomes including all-cause mortality, stroke recurrence, combined endpoint, and stroke disability, which showed a U-shaped association. And, significant interactions between sex and hemoglobin concentration on all-cause mortality and stroke recurrence were also identified.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000517868DOI Listing
August 2021

Plasma-activated thermosensitive biogel as an exogenous ROS carrier for post-surgical treatment of cancer.

Biomaterials 2021 09 9;276:121057. Epub 2021 Aug 9.

Department of Physics, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, And Department of Biomedical Engineering, City University of Hong Kong, Tat Chee Avenue, Kowloon, Hong Kong, China.

Post-surgical residual tumor cells are the primary cause of relapse and progression of cancer but unfortunately, there are limited therapeutic options. In this work, a fillable plasma-activated biogel is produced on a thermosensitive biogel [(Poly-DL-lactide)-(poly-ethylene glycol)-(poly-DL-lactide), PLEL] with the aid of a discharge plasma for local post-operative treatment of cancer. In vivo data show that the plasma-activated PLEL biogel (PAPB) eliminates residual tumor tissues after removal surgery and also inhibits in situ recurrence while showing no evident systemic toxicity. Moreover, the PAPB possesses excellent storage capability, allows for slow release of plasma-generated reactive oxygen species (ROS), and exhibits good ROS-mediated anticancer effects in vitro. Our results reveal that the novel plasma-activated biogel is an effective therapeutic agent for local post-operative treatment of cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2021.121057DOI Listing
September 2021
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