Publications by authors named "Kang Lee"

2,049 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

PLC-Based Integrated Refractive Index Sensor Probe with Partially Exposed Waveguide.

Sensors (Basel) 2022 Jul 29;22(15). Epub 2022 Jul 29.

Industrial & Personal Safety Intelligence Research Section, Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI), Daejeon 34129, Korea.

This paper proposes a simple, high-efficiency refractive index (RI) sensor, with a structure based on the planar lightwave circuit (PLC) probe type. The optical sensor has a 1 × 2 splitter structure with reference and sensing channels, each consisting of a U-shaped waveguide structure that is configured by connecting C bends. This design allows for the sensor device to have a probe structure wherein the surface interconnected with activity devices (i.e., an optical source and optical detector) is placed on one side. The reference channel is bent with a minimum optical loss, and the sensing channel has a bent structure, involving a C-bend waveguide with a maximum loss. The C-bend waveguide with a maximum loss is conformally aligned to have a trench structure with the same bending radius, designed to selectively expose the sidewall of the core layer. The local index contrast varies depending on the material in contact with the trench, resulting in a change in the optical output power of the waveguide. The sensitivity of the proposed sensor was 0 and 2070 μW/refractive index unit (RIU) for the reference and sensing channels, respectively, as the RI changed from 1.385 to 1.445 at a 1550 nm wavelength. These results suggest that the proposed structure enables efficient RI measurement through the use of a simple dip-type method.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/s22155672DOI Listing
July 2022

Suppression of allograft rejection by regulatory B cells generated via toll-like receptor signaling.

JCI Insight 2022 Aug 9. Epub 2022 Aug 9.

Department of Surgery, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, United States of America.

B-lymphocytes have long been recognized for their critical contributions to adaptive immunity, providing defense against pathogens through cognate antigen presentation to T cells and antibody production. More recently appreciated is that B cells are also integral in securing self-tolerance; this has led to interest in their therapeutic application to down-regulate unwanted immune responses such as transplant rejection. In this study, we found that PMA and ionomycin-activated mouse B cells acquire regulatory properties following stimulation through Toll-like receptor (TLR)4/TLR9 receptors (Bregs-TLR). Bregs-TLR efficiently inhibited T cell proliferation in vitro and prevented allograft rejection. Unlike most reported Breg activities, the inhibition of alloimmune responses by Bregs-TLR relied on the expression of TGF-βand not IL-10. In vivo, Bregs-TLR interrupted donor-specific T cell expansion and induced regulatory T cells in a TGF-β dependent manner. RNA-seq analyses corroborated the involvement of TGF-β pathways in Breg-TLR function, identified potential gene pathways implicated in preventing graft rejection, and suggested new targets to foster Breg regulation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1172/jci.insight.152213DOI Listing
August 2022

Laccase-mimicking Mn-Cu hybrid nanoflowers for paper-based visual detection of phenolic neurotransmitters and rapid degradation of dyes.

J Nanobiotechnology 2022 Aug 2;20(1):358. Epub 2022 Aug 2.

Department of BioNano Technology, Gachon University, 1342 Seongnamdae-ro, Sujeong-gu, Seongnam, 13120, Gyeonggi, Republic of Korea.

Background: Laccase-based biosensors are efficient for detecting phenolic compounds. However, the instability and high cost of laccases have hindered their practical utilization.

Results: In this study, we developed hierarchical manganese dioxide-copper phosphate hybrid nanoflowers (H-Mn-Cu NFs) as excellent laccase-mimicking nanozymes. To synthesize the H-Mn-Cu NFs, manganese dioxide nanoflowers (MnO NFs) were first synthesized by rapidly reducing potassium permanganate using citric acid. The MnO NFs were then functionalized with amine groups, followed by incubation with copper sulfate for three days at room temperature to drive the coordination interaction between the amine moieties and copper ions and to induce anisotropic growth of the petals composed of copper phosphate crystals, consequently yielding H-Mn-Cu NFs. Compared with those of free laccase, at the same mass concentration, H-Mn-Cu NFs exhibited lower K (~ 85%) and considerably higher V (~ 400%), as well as significantly enhanced stability in the ranges of pH, temperature, ionic strength, and incubation periods evaluated. H-Mn-Cu NFs also catalyzed the decolorization of diverse dyes considerably faster than the free laccase. Based on these advantageous features, a paper microfluidic device incorporating H-Mn-Cu NFs was constructed for the convenient visual detection of phenolic neurotransmitters, including dopamine and epinephrine. The device enabled rapid and sensitive quantification of target neurotransmitters using an image acquired using a smartphone.

Conclusions: These results clearly show that H-Mn-Cu NFs could be potential candidates to replace natural laccases for a wide range of applications in biosensing, environmental protection, and biotechnology.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12951-022-01560-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9344716PMC
August 2022

Synthesis, photophysical properties and photo-induced cytotoxicity of novel tris(diazatriphenylene)ruthenium (II) complex.

Bioorg Chem 2022 Jul 28;128:106044. Epub 2022 Jul 28.

Department of Chemistry, Kangwon National University, Chuncheon 24341, Republic of Korea. Electronic address:

Novel bipyridine-based heterocyclic building block, 3,10-dichloro-benzo[f][1,10]phenanthroline and its Ruthenium(II) complex have been synthesized and fully characterized. The synthesized Ru(II)-complex is highly luminescent displaying emission at 590 nm with quantum yield of ∼0.8 in methanol. Ru(II) complex showed photocytotoxicity upon 400 nm blue light irradiation. Mechanistic study revealed that photoactivated Ru(II) complex generates reactive radical species which can damage the protein inside the cells and induce cell death even with short irradiation time.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bioorg.2022.106044DOI Listing
July 2022

Minimally invasive treatment of duodenal obstruction with acute pancreatitis caused by two large bezoars.

J Minim Access Surg 2022 Jul 20. Epub 2022 Jul 20.

Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.

Bezoar without gastrointestinal surgical history occurring simultaneously in the gastric and duodenal lumen is very rare. We report a case of acute pancreatitis due to duodenal obstruction caused by two large bezoars. Two large bezoars were detected in the gastric and duodenal lumen, respectively, on abdominal computed tomography (CT) scan and oesophagogastroduodenoscopy images. Bezoars were crushed and removed using endoscopic devices such as trapezoid basket and lithotripsy handle. After removal of bezoars, blood tests and CT follow-up tests confirmed improvement. In the case of bezoar, which causes duodenal obstruction, it is difficult to administer coke for dissolution, and if it is difficult to perform surgical approach due to old age, an endoscopic treatment using mechanical lithotripsy devices can be an alternative option.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4103/jmas.jmas_30_22DOI Listing
July 2022

Changes of Atherosclerotic Plaque in Cerebral Artery Stenosis According to High-Resolution MR Imaging.

Tomography 2022 Jun 27;8(4):1690-1701. Epub 2022 Jun 27.

Department of Neurology, Medical School, Jeonbuk National University Hospital, Jeonju 54907, Korea.

Atherosclerosis can affect multiple arteries, and result in stroke and heart disease. Clinical and conventional imaging is insufficient to predict the progression of atherosclerosis. This study investigates risk factors that rely on high-resolution magnetic resonance imaging (HR-MRI). Patients with cerebral artery stenosis who had undergone HR-MRI at least twice were included. The demographics, risk factors, and proportion of patients with cerebral artery stenosis were investigated. The association between atherosclerotic plaque characteristics and the progression or regression of artery stenosis was also analyzed. A total of 42 patients were analyzed, with a median follow-up of 16.88 ± 12.53 months. The mean age of all subjects was 63.1 ± 9.15 years, and 83.3% of them were male. The incidences of stenosis of the basilar, proximal internal carotid, and middle cerebral arteries were 21.4%, 61.9%, and 16.7%, respectively. Intraplaque hemorrhage (IPH) was detected in 20 (47.6%) patients. Multivariate analysis showed that age (odds ratio (OR), 0.87; = 0.014), smoking (OR, 0.11; = 0.033), and IPH regression (OR, 10.13; = 0.027) were associated with stenosis regression. The progression of IPH (OR, 115.80; = 0.007) was associated with stenosis progression. Results suggest that IPH on HR-MRI is associated with changes in cerebral atherosclerotic stenosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/tomography8040141DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9326659PMC
June 2022

Safety and Effectiveness of Desvenlafaxine in Korean Patients with Major Depressive Disorder: A 6-month Postmarketing Surveillance Study.

Clin Psychopharmacol Neurosci 2022 Aug;20(3):548-559

Department of Psychiatry, Chonnam National University Medical School, Gwangju, Korea.

Objective: Although the safety and efficacy of desvenlafaxine have been demonstrated, long-term evidence in Asians is lacking. We examined the safety and effectiveness of desvenlafaxine for up to 6 months in routine clinical practice in Korea.

Methods: This multicenter, open-label, prospective observational study was conducted from February 2014 to February 2020 as a postmarketing surveillance study of desvenlafaxine (ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT02548949). Adult patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) were observed from the initiation of treatment for 8 weeks (acute treatment phase) and then up to 6 months (continuation treatment phase) in a subsample. Safety was evaluated by incidence of adverse events (AE) and adverse drug reactions. Treatment response was assessed using the Clinical Global Impression- Improvement (CGI-I) scale.

Results: We included 700 and 236 study subjects in the analysis of acute and continuation treatment phase, respectively. In acute treatment phase, AE incidence was 9.86%, with nausea being most common (2.00%). In continuation treatment phase, AE incidence was 2.97%, with tremor occurring most frequently. After acute treatment (n = 464), the treatment response rate according to the CGI-I score at week 8 was 28.9%. In long-term users (n = 213), the response rate at month 6 was 45.5%. During the study period, no clinically relevant changes in BP were found regardless of concomitant use of antihypertensive drugs.

Conclusion: This study provides evidence on the safety and effectiveness of desvenlafaxine in adults with MDD, with a low incidence of AE, consistent AE profile with previous studies, and improved response after long-term treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.9758/cpn.2022.20.3.548DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9329104PMC
August 2022

Crucial Factors Regulating Intramolecular Charge-Transfer-Based Radiative Efficiency in -Carboranyl Luminophores: Planarity between Substituted Biphenyl Rings.

ACS Omega 2022 Jul 30;7(27):24027-24039. Epub 2022 Jun 30.

Department of Chemistry, Institute for Molecular Science and Fusion Technology, Kangwon National University, Chuncheon, Gangwon 24341, Republic of Korea.

-Carboranyl compounds contain specific geometries, ranging from planar to orthogonally distorted biphenyl rings. Herein, 13 -carboranyl compounds, , were synthesized and fully characterized to determine the impact of structural formation of the aromatic group appended with the -carborane to estimate the efficiency of their radiative decay process. All the compounds exhibited significant intramolecular charge transfer (ICT)-based emission in the crystalline state at 298 K. Remarkably, increasing the distorted dihedral angles between biphenyl rings gradually decreased the emission efficiencies. Furthermore, their radiative decay constants decreased linearly with increasing dihedral angles, which demonstrated the inversely proportional relationship between these two factors. These findings distinctly suggest that the planar or distorted geometry of substituted aryl groups can strongly affect the efficiency of the ICT-based radiative process in -carboranyl luminophores.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsomega.2c03344DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9281304PMC
July 2022

Dataset of the effect of difficulty messaging on academic cheating in middle school Chinese children.

Data Brief 2022 Aug 20;43:108405. Epub 2022 Jun 20.

Dr Eric Jackman Institute of Child Study, University of Toronto, 45 Walmer Rd., Toronto, Ontario M5R 2X2, Canada.

The present dataset was reported in a paper entitled "Effects of test difficulty messaging on academic cheating among middle school children" [1]. It reports the findings of an experimental study that used a naturalistic math test-taking paradigm to assess children's academic cheating behavior under different test difficulty messaging conditions. The participants were Grade 8 middle school children ( = 201). The primary dependent measures were whether each participant spontaneously decided to cheat (), and among participants who cheated, the specific number of test items on which they cheated (). We used logistic regression, ANOVA, and Pearson correlation to assess whether various predictor variables (e.g., conditions) predicted the presence of cheating or the extent of cheating. This dataset should be of interest to researchers who are interested in the development of moral behavior in children generally, and academic dishonesty in particular.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.dib.2022.108405DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9241090PMC
August 2022

Evaluation of the cell permeability of bicyclic peptoids and bicyclic peptide-peptoid hybrids.

Bioorg Chem 2022 Oct 25;127:105976. Epub 2022 Jun 25.

Department of Chemistry and Division of Advanced Materials Science, Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH), Pohang 37673, South Korea. Electronic address:

Bicyclization has proven to be an effective strategy for significantly restricting conformational flexibility in peptides and peptidomimetics such as peptoids. Such constrained bicyclic peptoids would have far higher conformational rigidity than monocyclic and linear ones, allowing them to have enhanced binding affinity and selectivity for their biological targets. Herein, we show that bicyclic peptoids have superior cellular uptake efficiency than their linear counterparts regardless of their side chains and ring sizes. As a representative example, an 8-mer bicyclic peptoid achieves a CP value of 1.2 μM, which is > 5-times superior to the corresponding linear peptoid. Additionally, we also demonstrate that bicyclic peptide-peptoid hybrids are much more cell-permeable than native peptides. Due to their favorable properties including improved cellular uptake, resistance to proteolytic degradation, relatively large sizes, and enormous structural diversity, constrained bicyclic peptoids and peptide-peptoid hybrids will play an important role as potential drug leads, especially in targeting intracellular protein-protein interactions, which are traditionally considered undruggable.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bioorg.2022.105976DOI Listing
October 2022

A novel machine learning approach to shorten depression risk assessment for convenient uses.

J Affect Disord 2022 09 23;312:275-291. Epub 2022 Jun 23.

Beijing Anding Hospital, China; University of Toronto, Canada. Electronic address:

Background: Depression is a mental disorder affecting many people worldwide which has been exacerbated by the current pandemic. There is an urgent need for a reliable yet short scale for individuals to self-assess the risk of depression conveniently and rapidly on a regular basis.

Methods: We obtained a dataset of responses to the Depression, Anxiety, and Stress questionnaire (DASS-42) from a large sample of individuals worldwide (N = 31,715). With this dataset, important items from the questionnaire were extracted by applying feature selection techniques. Then, using the most important features, various machine learning algorithms were trained, tested, and validated in predicting depression status.

Results: This study revealed that only seven items are needed to predict depression status with at least 90 % accuracy of the original full scale. This can be achieved through the Stacked Generalization Ensemble learning method of multiple models. The trained machine learning models from the best algorithm were then implemented as an online Depression Rapid Assessment tool, which allows the user to evaluate their current depression status conveniently and quickly (about 1 min).

Limitations: The sample size of the present study is still relatively small and has biases toward certain demographics (e.g., mostly young, Asian, and female). Further, memory issues with Stacked Generalization Ensemble prevent it from being trained in the same way as the other algorithm.

Conclusion: It is possible to produce very short assessments that approximate the accuracy of the full scale for convenient and rapid self-assessment of depression risks.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2022.06.035DOI Listing
September 2022

Non-Thermal Plasma Jet-Treated Medium Induces Selective Cytotoxicity against -Infected Macrophages.

Biomedicines 2022 May 26;10(6). Epub 2022 May 26.

Department of Microbiology & Medical Science, College of Medicine, Chungnam National University, Daejeon 301-747, Korea.

Plasma-treated media (PTM) serve as an adjuvant therapy to postoperatively remove residual cancerous lesions. We speculated that PTM could selectively kill cells infected with () and remove postoperative residual tuberculous lesions. We therefore investigated the effects of a medium exposed to a non-thermal plasma jet on the suppression of intracellular replication, cell death, signaling, and selectivity. We propose that PTM elevates the levels of the detoxifying enzymes, glutathione peroxidase, catalase, and ataxia-telangiectasia mutated serine/threonine kinase and increases intracellular reactive oxygen species production in -infected cells. The bacterial load was significantly decreased in spleen and lung tissues and single-cell suspensions from mice intraperitoneally injected with PTM compared with saline and untreated medium. Therefore, PTM has the potential as a novel treatment that can eliminate residual -infected cells after infected tissues are surgically resected.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/biomedicines10061243DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9219627PMC
May 2022

A Randomized, Double-Blind, Active-Control, Noninferiority, Multicenter, Phase 4 Study to Evaluate the Efficacy and Safety of Esomeprazole/Sodium Bicarbonate 20/800 mg in Patients with Nonerosive Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease.

Gut Liver 2022 06 22. Epub 2022 Jun 22.

Department of Internal Medicine, Hanyang University Guri Hospital, Hanyang University College of Medicine, Guri, Korea.

Background/aims: Efficacy of proton pump inhibitors is limited in patients with nonerosive reflux disease (NERD). The aim of this study was to comparatively evaluate the efficacy and safety of esomeprazole with sodium bicarbonate and esomeprazole alone.

Methods: This was a multicenter, randomized, double-blind, active-controlled, noninferiority comparative study. A total of 379 patients with NERD were randomly allocated to receive either Esoduo (esomeprazole 20 mg with sodium bicarbonate 800 mg) or Nexium (esomeprazole 20 mg) once daily for 4 weeks from January 2019 to December 2019. The patients had a history of heartburn for at least 2 days in the week before randomization as well as in the last 3 months and no esophageal mucosal breaks on endoscopy. The primary endpoint was a complete cure of heartburn at week 4. The secondary and exploratory endpoints as well as the safety profiles were compared in the groups at weeks 2 and 4.

Results: A total of 355 patients completed the study (180 in the Esoduo group and 175 in the Nexium group). The proportions of patients without heartburn in the entire 4th week of treatment were not different between the two groups (33.33% in the Esoduo group and 35% in the Nexium group, p=0.737). There were no significant differences in most of the secondary and exploratory endpoints as well as the safety profiles.

Conclusions: Esoduo is as effective and safe as Nexium for managing typical symptoms in patients with NERD (ClinicalTrial.gov identifier: NCT03928470).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.5009/gnl220023DOI Listing
June 2022

Predictive Factors Indicative of Hemithyroidectomy and Close Follow-Up versus Bilateral Total Thyroidectomy for Aggressive Variants of Papillary Thyroid Cancer.

Cancers (Basel) 2022 Jun 2;14(11). Epub 2022 Jun 2.

Department of Surgery, College of Medicine, Severance Hospital, Yonsei University, Seoul 03722, Korea.

The diagnostic and treatment rates of early thyroid cancer have been increasing, including those of aggressive variants of papillary thyroid cancer (AVPTC). This study aimed to analyze the need for completion total thyroidectomy after lobectomy for clinically low-to-intermediate-risk AVPTC. Overall, 249 patients who underwent hemithyroidectomy (HT, n = 46) or bilateral total thyroidectomy (BTT, n = 203) for AVPTC between November 2005 and December 2019 at our single institution were examined. The average follow-up period was 14.9 years, with a recurrence rate of 4.3% and 10.8% in the HT and BTT groups, respectively. Multivariate Cox analysis revealed that palpable tumor on the neck during evaluation (HR, 2.7; 95% CI, 1.1-6.4; = 0.025), clinical N1b (HR, 8.3; 95% CI, 1.1-63.4; = 0.041), tumor size (cm) (HR, 1.3; 95% CI, 1.0-1.7; = 0.036), gross extrathyroidal extension (HR, 3.1; 95% CI, 1.4-7.0; = 0.007), and pathologic T3b (HR, 3.4; 95% CI, 1.0-11.4; = 0.045) or T4a (HR, 6.0; 95% CI, 1.9-18.8; = 0.002) were associated with an increased risk of recurrence. Incidentalomas identified during diagnosis had a significantly lower risk of recurrence (HR, 0.4; 95% CI, 0.2-0.9; = 0.033). Close follow-up may be performed without completion total thyroidectomy for AVPTC found incidentally after HT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cancers14112757DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9179578PMC
June 2022

Terpenoids from var. and their biological activities.

Beilstein J Org Chem 2022 17;18:555-566. Epub 2022 May 17.

School of Pharmacy, Sungkyunkwan University, Suwon 16419, Republic of Korea.

var. (common name: ground ivy) has been used for the treatment of asthma, bronchitis, cholelithiasis, colds, and inflammation. In the present study, three new sesquiterpene glycosides (-), two new diterpene glycosides ( and ), and four known compounds (-) were isolated from its MeOH extract. A structure elucidation was performed for the five new compounds (-) using 1D and 2D NMR, HRESIMS, DP4+ and ECD calculations, and chemical methods. All the isolates (-) were assessed for their antineuroinflammatory activities on nitric oxide (NO) production in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-activated BV-2 cells, nerve growth factor (NGF) secretion stimulation activities in C6 glioma cells, and cytotoxic activities against four human cancer cell lines (A549, SK-OV-3, SK-MEL-2, and HCT15). Compounds and - exhibited inhibitory effects on the NO production with IC values of 52.21, 47.90, 61.61, and 25.35 μM, respectively. Compound also exhibited a significant stimulating effect on NGF secretion (122.77 ± 8.10%). Compound showed potent cytotoxic activity against SK-OV-3 (IC = 3.76 μM) and SK-MEL-2 (IC = 1.48 μM) cell lines, while displayed a strong cytotoxic activity against the SK-MEL-2 (IC = 9.81 μM) cell line.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3762/bjoc.18.58DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9127242PMC
May 2022

Feasibility of F-Fluorocholine PET for Evaluating Skeletal Muscle Atrophy in a Starved Rat Model.

Diagnostics (Basel) 2022 May 20;12(5). Epub 2022 May 20.

Department of Nuclear Medicine, College of Medicine, Ewha Womans University Seoul Hospital, Ewha Womans University, Seoul 07804, Korea.

Imaging techniques for diagnosing muscle atrophy and sarcopenia remain insufficient, although various advanced diagnostic methods have been established. We explored the feasibility of F-fluorocholine (F-FCH) positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) for evaluating skeletal muscle atrophy, as an imaging technique that tracks choline level changes in muscles. Cell uptake in L6 cells by F-FCH was performed in a complete medium containing serum (untreated group, UN) and a serum-free medium (starved group, ST). Small-animal-dedicated PET/CT imaging with F-FCH was examined in in-vivo models with rats that were starved for 2 days to cause muscle atrophy. After the hind limbs were dissected, starvation-induced in-vivo models were anatomically confirmed by reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction to evaluate the expression levels of the atrophy markers muscle RING-finger protein-1 (MuRF-1) and atrogin-1. F-FCH uptake was lower in the starvation-induced cells than in the untreated group, and in-vivo PET uptake also revealed a similar tendency (the average standardized uptake value (SUV) = 0.26 ± 0.06 versus 0.37 ± 0.07, respectively). Furthermore, the expression levels of MuRF-1 and atrogin-1 mRNA were significantly increased in the starvation-induced muscle atrophy of rats compared to the untreated group. F-FCH PET/CT may be a promising tool for diagnosing skeletal muscle atrophy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics12051274DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9141294PMC
May 2022

Clinical Significance of Early Carcinoembryonic Antigen Change in Patients With Nonmetastatic Colorectal Cancer.

Front Oncol 2022 9;12:739614. Epub 2022 May 9.

Department of Surgery, Gangnam Severance Hospital, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, South Korea.

Background: This study aimed to evaluate the prognostic significance of preoperative, postoperative, and trajectory changes in carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) levels in patients with colorectal cancer (CRC).

Methods: This retrospective study included patients who underwent surgical resection for nonmetastatic CRC. The optimal cutoff values of preoperative CEA (CEA-pre), early postoperative CEA (CEA-post), and CEA level change (CEA-delta) were determined to maximize the differences in overall survival (OS) among groups. The patients were divided into three groups according to CEA-trend: normal, low CEA-pre; normalized, high CEA-pre/low CEA-post; elevated, high CEA-pre/high CEA-post. The integrated area under the curve (iAUC) was used to compare the discriminatory power of all variables.

Results: A total of 1019 patients diagnosed with stage I-III CRC were enrolled. The optimal cutoff values of CEA level were determined as 2.3 ng/mL for CEA-pre, 2.3 ng/mL for CEA-post, and -0.93 ng/mL for CEA-delta. Although subgroup dichotomization showed that CEA-pre, CEA-post, CEA-delta, and CEA-trend were all associated with OS in univariate analysis, CEA-trend was the only independent prognostic factor in multivariate analysis. The iAUC of CEA-trend was superior to that of CEA-pre, CEA-post, and CEA-delta. Compared with the normal group, the normalized group showed worse OS (=.0007) in stage II patients but similar OS (=.067) in stage III patients.

Conclusion: The optimal cutoff value of CEA level in the preoperative and postoperative periods was determined to be 2.3 ng/mL, and the combination of CEA-pre and CEA-post showed better prognostic stratification. However, its prognostic significance may differ depending on the CRC stage.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fonc.2022.739614DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9124957PMC
May 2022

Risk factors and economic burden of postoperative anastomotic leakage related events in patients who underwent surgeries for colorectal cancer.

PLoS One 2022 18;17(5):e0267950. Epub 2022 May 18.

Department of Surgery, Severance Hospital, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.

Background: Nationwide research about the clinical and economic burden caused by anastomotic leakage (AL) has not been published yet in Korea. This study assessed the AL rate and quantified the economic burden using the nationwide database.

Methods: This real world evidence study used health claims data provided by the Korean Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service (HIRA, which showed that 156,545 patients underwent anterior resection (AR), low anterior resection (LAR), or ultra-low anterior resection (uLAR) for colorectal cancer (CRC) between January 1, 2007 and January 31, 2020. The incidence of AL was identified using a composite operational definition, a composite of imaging study, antibacterial drug use, reoperation, or image-guided percutaneous drainage. Total hospital costs and length of stay (LOS) were evaluated in patients with AL versus those without AL during index hospitalization and within 30 days after the surgery.

Results: Among 120,245 patients who met the eligibility criteria, 7,194 (5.98%) patients had AL within 30 days after surgery. Male gender, comorbidities (diabetes, metastatic disease, ischemic heart disease, ischemic stroke), protective ostomy, and multiple linear stapler use, blood transfusion, and urinary tract injury were associated with the higher odds of AL. Older age, rectosigmoid junction cancer, AR, LAR, and laparoscopic approach were related with the reduced odds of AL. Patients with AL incurred higher costs for index hospitalization compared to those without AL (8,991 vs. 7,153 USD; p<0.0001). Patients with AL also required longer LOS (16.78 vs. 14.22 days; p<0.0001) and readmissions (20.83 vs. 13.93 days; p<0.0001).

Conclusion: Among patients requiring resection for CRC, the occurrence of AL was associated with significantly increased costs and LOS. Preventing AL could not only produce superior clinical outcomes, but also reduce the economic burden for patients and payers.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0267950PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9116683PMC
May 2022

Analysis of the Incidence and Risk Factors of Postoperative Delirium in Patients With Degenerative Cervical Myelopathy.

Neurospine 2022 Jun 12;19(2):323-333. Epub 2022 May 12.

Spine Center, Hallym University Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea.

Objective: The purpose of this study is to analyze various risk factors that can cause postoperative delirium (POD) in degenerative cervical myelopathy (DCM) patients, which may affect normal recovery and outcomes after surgery, and to help deal with them in advance and to take a medical approach.

Methods: A total of 148 patients aged 60 years or older who underwent laminoplasty or anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) for DCM from 2008 to 2015 were included in this study. Incidence and multiple risk factors for development of POD were analyzed.

Results: POD occurred in 24 patients (16.2%). Among the 148 patients, 78 received laminoplasty, of whom 19 patients (24%) experienced delirium; the other 70 patients underwent ACDF, of whom 5 patients (7.1%) experienced delirium. History of Parkinson disease (odds ratio [OR], 178.242; p = 0.015), potassium level (OR, 3.764; p = 0.031), and surgical approach of laminoplasty over ACDF (OR, 8.538; p = 0.008) were found to be significant risk factors in a multivariate analysis. Age (OR, 1.056; p = 0.04) and potassium level (OR, 3.217; p = 0.04) were significant risk factors in the laminoplasty group.

Conclusion: The findings of this study suggest that the incidence and risk factors for POD may vary in patients with DCM. It is necessary to understand multiple factors that affect the development of POD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.14245/ns.2142778.389DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9260543PMC
June 2022

FasL microgels induce immune acceptance of islet allografts in nonhuman primates.

Sci Adv 2022 05 13;8(19):eabm9881. Epub 2022 May 13.

Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering and Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, USA.

Islet transplantation to treat insulin-dependent diabetes is greatly limited by the need for maintenance immunosuppression. We report a strategy through which cotransplantation of allogeneic islets and streptavidin (SA)-FasL-presenting microgels to the omentum under transient rapamycin monotherapy resulted in robust glycemic control, sustained C-peptide levels, and graft survival in diabetic nonhuman primates for >6 months. Surgical extraction of the graft resulted in prompt hyperglycemia. In contrast, animals receiving microgels without SA-FasL under the same rapamycin regimen rejected islet grafts acutely. Graft survival was associated with increased number of FoxP3 cells in the graft site with no significant changes in T cell systemic frequencies or responses to donor and third-party antigens, indicating localized tolerance. Recipients of SA-FasL microgels exhibited normal liver and kidney metabolic function, demonstrating safety. This localized immunomodulatory strategy succeeded with unmodified islets and does not require long-term immunosuppression, showing translational potential in β cell replacement for treating type 1 diabetes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.abm9881DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9106299PMC
May 2022

AIMP2-DX2 provides therapeutic interface to control KRAS-driven tumorigenesis.

Nat Commun 2022 05 11;13(1):2572. Epub 2022 May 11.

Medicinal Bioconvergence Research Center, Institute for Artificial Intelligence and Biomedical Research, College of Pharmacy & College of Medicine, Gangnam Severance Hospital, Yonsei University, Incheon, Korea.

Recent development of the chemical inhibitors specific to oncogenic KRAS (Kirsten Rat Sarcoma 2 Viral Oncogene Homolog) mutants revives much interest to control KRAS-driven cancers. Here, we report that AIMP2-DX2, a variant of the tumor suppressor AIMP2 (aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase-interacting multi-functional protein 2), acts as a cancer-specific regulator of KRAS stability, augmenting KRAS-driven tumorigenesis. AIMP2-DX2 specifically binds to the hypervariable region and G-domain of KRAS in the cytosol prior to farnesylation. Then, AIMP2-DX2 competitively blocks the access of Smurf2 (SMAD Ubiquitination Regulatory Factor 2) to KRAS, thus preventing ubiquitin-mediated degradation. Moreover, AIMP2-DX2 levels are positively correlated with KRAS levels in colon and lung cancer cell lines and tissues. We also identified a small molecule that specifically bound to the KRAS-binding region of AIMP2-DX2 and inhibited the interaction between these two factors. Treatment with this compound reduces the cellular levels of KRAS, leading to the suppression of KRAS-dependent cancer cell growth in vitro and in vivo. These results suggest the interface of AIMP2-DX2 and KRAS as a route to control KRAS-driven cancers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-022-30149-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9095880PMC
May 2022

Gravimetric analysis of stability of polymeric materials during exposure to chemical disinfectants at different temperatures.

Chemosphere 2022 Sep 5;302:134813. Epub 2022 May 5.

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Hanyang University, 222 Wangsimni-ro, Seongdong-gu, Seoul, 04763, Republic of Korea. Electronic address:

The goal of this study was to evaluate the impact of thermal and chemical aging processes on high-density polyethylene (HDPE), low-density polyethylene (LDPE), unplasticized polyvinyl chloride (U-PVC), and high-impact polyvinyl chloride (Hi-PVC) pipes. The materials were exposed to 1-10 ppm chemical disinfectants [chlorine dioxide (ClO) and hypochlorite (HOCl)] at 40-80 °C for 1200 h. The diffusion properties of the materials were systematically analyzed based on the change in their sorption characteristics and activation energies according to the Arrhenius model. Moreover, the structural changes were analyzed with scanning electron microscopy (SEM), Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) radiation, and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The results show that the materials have Fickian characteristics in the aging environment. Specifically, the water sorption rates of HDPE and LDPE increase first and then decrease after reaching saturation (Ms); those of U-PVC and Hi-PVC its increasing continuously with different rate. This behavior of materials was prominent for ClO at high temperature and disinfectant dose because of polymeric chains crosslinking and rearrangement, extraction of monomers, and stable compounds removal during aging under exposed conditions. The deleterious effects decreased the activation energies of the materials and increased the concentrations of carbonyl groups [CO] via the formation of ketones, aldehydes, and carboxylic acids. The decomposition temperature increased with the changes in the material morphology and elemental contents under the investigated conditions. Moreover, LDPE and Hi-PVC were more severely affected in the thermal aging process with 10 mg.L ClO at 80 °C.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2022.134813DOI Listing
September 2022

Pharmacological systemic analysis of gardenia fructus against non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and validation of animal models.

Phys Act Nutr 2022 Mar 31;26(1):39-45. Epub 2022 Mar 31.

Department of Anatomy, Semyung University, Chungbuk, Republic of Korea.

Purpose: We aimed to investigate the systemic pharmacological analysis of gardenia fructus (GF) and the proof of concepts. We examined the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects in high-fat (HF) diet mice.

Methods: The active compounds of GF and the target genes were identified using the Traditional Chinese Medicine Database and Analysis Platform (oral bioavailability ≥ 30%, Caco-2 permeability ≥ -0.4, and drug-likeness ≥ 0.18). The rats were divided into four groups: untreated group, HF group, HF and metformin (17 mg/kg) treated group, and HF and treated with GF (28 mg/kg) for 8 weeks group. Hepatic lesion changes and markers were analyzed using hematoxylin and eosin staining and immunohistochemistry assay.

Results: In the systemic analysis, we identified 14 active compounds including A, B, and C. From these 14 compounds, 242 biological target genes were identified. The top 10 Gene Ontology were analyzed using GO-biological process analysis: removal of superoxide radicals, regulation of endothelial cell apoptotic process, and cellular response to lipopolysaccharide. GF extracts in high-fat diet-induced non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) mice models significantly regulated hepatic lesion markers, such as mTOR, 8-Hydroxy- 2'-deoxyguanosine as well as oxidative stress activities, TGF-β, and phosphorylation of ERK1/2.

Conclusion: These results suggest that GF, as an exercise supplement, can alleviate NAFLD disease or fatty liver inflammation. Further studies are required to verify the synergistic effect of GF treatment combined with exercise, which is known to alleviate NAFLD and fatty liver inflammation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.20463/pan.2022.0006DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9081353PMC
March 2022

Alteration of intramolecular electronic transition deboronation of carbazole-based -carboranyl compound and intriguing 'turn-on' emissive variation.

RSC Adv 2021 Jul 7;11(39):24057-24064. Epub 2021 Jul 7.

Department of Chemistry, Institute for Molecular Science and Fusion Technology, Kangwon National University Chuncheon Gangwon 24341 Republic of Korea

The conversion of -carborane-containing compounds to the -species deboronation causes photophysical changes that could be used for sensing applications. 9-Methyl-9-carbazole-based - (-Cz) and -carboranyl (-Cz) compounds were prepared and fully characterised by multinuclear NMR spectroscopy and elemental analysis, and the solid-state molecular structure of -Cz was analysed by X-ray crystallography. Although the -compound exhibited an emissive pattern centred at = . 530 nm in the rigid state only (in THF at 77 K and as a film), -Cz demonstrated intense emission in the near-UV region ( = . 380 nm) in both solution and film states at 298 K. The positive solvatochromic effect of -Cz and the results of theoretical calculations for both the -carboranyl compounds supported that these emissive features originate from intramolecular charge transfer (ICT) corresponding to the -carborane. Furthermore, the calculations verified that the electronic role of the -carboranyl unit changed from acceptor to donor upon deboronation from -Cz to -Cz. Investigations of the radiative decay mechanisms of -Cz and -Cz according to their quantum efficiencies ( ) and decay lifetimes ( ) suggested that the ICT-based radiative decays of -Cz and -Cz readily occur in the film (solid) and solution state, respectively. These observations implied that the emission of -Cz in the solution state could be drastically enhanced by deboronation to -Cz upon exposure to an increasing concentration of fluoride anions. Indeed, turn-on emissive features in an aqueous solution were observed upon deboronation, strongly suggesting the potential of -Cz as a turn-on and visually detectable chemodosimeter for fluoride ion sensing.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d1ra03716aDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9036662PMC
July 2021

Improved Productivity of Astaxanthin from Photosensitive Using Phototaxis Technology.

Mar Drugs 2022 Mar 22;20(4). Epub 2022 Mar 22.

Department of Bio-Convergence Engineering, Dongyang Mirae University, 445-8, Gyeongin-ro, Guro-gu, Seoul 02841, Korea.

is a microalgae actively studied for the production of natural astaxanthin, which is a powerful antioxidant for human application. However, it is economically disadvantageous for commercialization owing to the low productivity of astaxanthin. This study reports an effective screening strategy using the negative phototaxis of the to attain the mutants having high astaxanthin production. A polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)-based microfluidic device irradiated with a specific light was developed to efficiently figure out the phototactic response of . The partial photosynthesis deficient (PP) mutant (negative control) showed a 0.78-fold decreased cellular response to blue light compared to the wild type, demonstrating the positive relationship between the photosynthetic efficiency and the phototaxis. Based on this relationship, the mutants showing photosensitivity to blue light were selected from the 10,000 random mutant libraries. The M1 strain attained from the phototaxis-based screening showed 1.17-fold improved growth rate and 1.26-fold increases in astaxanthin production (55.12 ± 4.12 mg g) in the 100 L photo-bioreactor compared to the wild type. This study provides an effective selection tool for industrial application of the with improved astaxanthin productivity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/md20040220DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9032356PMC
March 2022

A new juvenile (Dinosauria, Ceratopsia) from the Javkhlant Formation (Upper Cretaceous) of Mongolia.

PeerJ 2022 5;10:e13176. Epub 2022 Apr 5.

Department of Physics Education, Gyeongsang National University, Jinju, South Korea.

Here we report a new articulated skeleton of (MPC-D 100/553) from the Khugenetjavkhlant locality at the Shine Us Khudag (Javkhlant Formation, ?Santonian-Campanian) of the eastern Gobi Desert, Mongolia, which represents the first substantially complete skeleton and the first juvenile individual of this taxon. The specimen includes a nearly complete cranium and large portions of the vertebral column and appendicular skeleton. Its skull is about 2/3 the size of the holotype specimen, based on mandibular length. Its juvenile ontogenetic stage is confirmed by multiple indicators of skeletal and morphological immaturity known in ceratopsians, such as the long-grained surface texture on the long bones, the smooth external surface on the postorbital, open neurocentral sutures of all caudal vertebrae, a large orbit relative to the postorbital and jugal, the low angle of the lacrimal ventral ramus relative to the maxillary teeth row, narrow frontal, and straight ventral edge of the dentary. Osteohistological analysis of MPC-D 100/553 recovered three lines of arrested growth, implying around 3 years of age when it died, and verified this specimen's immature ontogenetic stage. The specimen adds a new autapomorphy of , the anteroventral margin of the fungiform dorsal end of the lacrimal being excluded from the antorbital fossa. Furthermore, it shows a unique combination of diagnostic features of some other basal neoceratopsians: the ventrally hooked rostral bone as in and very tall middle caudal neural spines about or more than four times as high as the centrum as in , , and . The jugal with the subtemporal ramus deeper than the suborbital ramus as in the holotype specimen is also shared with , , and juvenile . Adding 38 new scorings into the recent comprehensive data matrix of basal Neoceratopsia and taking into account the ontogenetically variable characters recovered as the sister taxon to Euceratopsia (Leptoceratopsidae plus Coronosauria). A second phylogenetic analysis with another matrix for Ceratopsia also supported this position. The new phylogenetic position of is important in ceratopsian evolution, as this taxon represents one of the basalmost neoceratopsians with a broad, thin frill and hyper-elongated middle caudal neural spines while still being bipedal.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7717/peerj.13176DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8992648PMC
April 2022

pH-responsive polyelectrolyte complexation on upconversion nanoparticles: a multifunctional nanocarrier for protection, delivery, and 3D-imaging of therapeutic protein.

J Mater Chem B 2022 05 11;10(18):3420-3433. Epub 2022 May 11.

Department of Chemistry, Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology (GIST), Gwangju 61005, South Korea.

The delicate tertiary structure of proteins, their susceptibility to heat- and enzyme-induced irreversible denaturation, and their tendency to get accumulated at the cell membrane during uptake are daunting challenges in proteinaceous therapeutic delivery. Herein, a polyelectrolyte complex having encapsulated therapeutic protein has been designed on the surface of upconverting luminescent nanoparticles (NaYF:20%Yb,2%Er). This nanosized complex system has been found to overcome the challenges of protein aggregation at the cell membrane. It has also defended the cargo from denaturation against (a) enzymatic action of proteinase K and (b) heat (up to 60 °C). Additionally, the nanoparticles at the core of the loaded carrier served as near-infrared (980 nm) responsive probe to accomplish extended-duration 3D imaging during protein delivery. The outer layer of polymer played pivotal role to protect/retrieve the protein structure from denaturation as investigated by circular dichroism studies. Both the masked surface-charges of protein and the nanoscale size of the loaded carrier have facilitated their efficient passage through the cell membrane as observed through 3D images/videos. This nanocarrier is the first of its kind for direct delivery of protein. Thus, the findings can be useful to protect and transport various proteinaceous materials to overcome challenges of accumulation at the cell-membrane and low-temperature storage, as nature does.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d2tb00246aDOI Listing
May 2022

Effects of test difficulty messaging on academic cheating among middle school children.

J Exp Child Psychol 2022 08 29;220:105417. Epub 2022 Mar 29.

Dr. Eric Jackman Institute of Child Study, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario M5R 2X2, Canada.

Academic cheating is a serious worldwide problem that begins during childhood. However, to date there has been little research on academic cheating with children before high school age. The current study used a naturalistic experimental paradigm to evaluate the possibility that systematically manipulating messages about the difficulty of a test can affect whether middle school children (N = 201) would cheat by reporting a falsely inflated test score. We found that test difficulty messaging significantly affected children's cheating behavior. Specifically, telling children that a test was either easy or hard produced higher rates of cheating than telling them that the difficulty level was on par with their current skills. In addition, among the children who chose to cheat, telling them that the test was easy led to a greater degree of cheating. These findings are consistent with theories of academic cheating that point to the importance of approach and avoidance motives in achievement motivation. The findings also suggest that simple messaging can have a significant impact on children's moral behavior and that seemingly innocuous messages such as describing the difficulty of a test can influence children's decisions about whether and how much to cheat.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jecp.2022.105417DOI Listing
August 2022

Anticancer and Anti-Neuroinflammatory Constituents Isolated from the Roots of .

Antioxidants (Basel) 2022 Feb 28;11(3). Epub 2022 Feb 28.

School of Pharmacy, Sungkyunkwan University, Suwon 16419, Korea.

Wasabi ( (Miq.) Matsum.) is a pungent spice commonly consumed with sushi and sashimi. From the roots of this plant, a new 2-butenolide derivative () and 17 previously reported compounds (-) were isolated and structurally characterized. Their chemical structures were characterized based on the conventional NMR (H and C, COSY, HSQC, and HMBC) and HRESIMS data analysis. All of these phytochemicals (-) were evaluated for their antiproliferative effects on the four human tumor cell lines (A549, SK-OV-3, SK-MEL-2, and MKN-1), for their inhibitory activity on nitric oxide (NO) production in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-activated BV-2 microglia cells, and for their nerve growth factor (NGF)-releasing effect from C6 glioma cells. Among the isolated compounds, compound showed powerful antiproliferative activities against A549 and SK-MEL-2 cell lines with IC values of 2.10 and 9.08 μM, respectively. Moreover, the new compound exhibited moderate NO inhibition activity with IC value of 45.3 μM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/antiox11030482DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8944812PMC
February 2022

Intra-instrument channel workable, optical-resolution photoacoustic and ultrasonic mini-probe system for gastrointestinal endoscopy.

Photoacoustics 2022 Jun 10;26:100346. Epub 2022 Mar 10.

Center for Photoacoustic Medical Instruments, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST), Ulsan 44919, South Korea.

There has been a long-standing expectation that the optical-resolution embodiment of photoacoustic tomography could have a substantial impact on gastrointestinal endoscopy by enabling microscopic visualization of the vasculature based on the endogenous contrast mechanism. Although multiple studies have demonstrated the in vivo imaging capability of a developed imaging device over the last decade, the implementation of such an endoscopic system that can be applied immediately when necessary via the instrument channel of a video endoscope has been a challenge. In this study, we developed a 3.38-mm diameter catheter-based, integrated optical-resolution photoacoustic and ultrasonic mini-probe system and successfully demonstrated its intra-instrument channel workability for the standard 3.7-mm diameter instrument channel of a clinical video endoscope based on a swine model. Through the instrument channel, we acquired the first in vivo dual-mode photoacoustic and ultrasonic endoscopic images from the esophagogastric junction of a swine. Further, in a rat colorectum in vivo imaging experiment, we visualized hierarchically developed mesh-like capillary networks with a hole size as small as ~50 µm, which suggests the potential level of image details that could be photoacoustically provided in clinical settings in the future.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pacs.2022.100346DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8933520PMC
June 2022
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