Publications by authors named "Li Hu"

1,018 Publications

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Deciphering Potential Roles of Earthworms in Mitigation of Antibiotic Resistance in the Soils from Diverse Ecosystems.

Environ Sci Technol 2021 May 12. Epub 2021 May 12.

State Key Laboratory of Urban and Regional Ecology, Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100085, China.

Earthworms are capable of redistributing bacteria and antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) through soil profiles. However, our understanding of the earthworm gut microbiome and its interaction with the antibiotic resistome is still lacking. Here, we characterized the earthworm gut and soil microbiome and antibiotic resistome in natural and agricultural ecosystems at a national scale, and microcosm studies and field experiments were also employed to test the potential role of earthworms in dynamics of soil ARGs. The diversity and structure of bacterial communities were different between the earthworm gut and soil. A significant correlation between bacterial community dissimilarity and spatial distance between sites was identified in the earthworm gut. The earthworm gut consistently had lower ARGs than the surrounding soil. A significant reduction in the relative abundance of mobile genetic elements and dominant bacterial phylotypes that are the likely hosts of ARGs was observed in the earthworm gut compared to the surrounding soil, which might contribute to the decrease of ARGs in the earthworm gut. The microcosm studies and field experiments further confirmed that the presence of earthworms significantly reduced the number and abundance of ARGs in soils. Our study implies that earthworm-based bioremediation may be a method to reduce risks associated with the presence of ARGs in soils.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.1c00811DOI Listing
May 2021

Identification of Heat Shock Protein 90 as a Recurrence Related Marker in Juvenile Nasopharyngeal Angiofibroma.

Am J Rhinol Allergy 2021 May 3:19458924211012820. Epub 2021 May 3.

Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, Eye, Ear, Nose, and Throat Hospital, Shanghai Medical College, Fudan University, Shanghai, People's Republic of China.

Background: Juvenile nasopharyngeal angiofibroma (JNA) is a highly recurrent tumor after curative surgery.

Objective: The purpose of this study was to evaluate heat shock protein 90 (HSP90) expression in JNA and its association with tumor recurrence.

Methods: Immunohistochemistry was performed to assess HSP90 expression using tissue microarrays containing 70 JNA patients and 10 control subjects. The associations of HSP90 expression with clinicopathological features and tumor recurrence were analyzed.

Results: Immunohistochemistry revealed high HSP90 expression in JNA compared with normal middle turbinate samples. High expression of HSP90, which correlated with MVD ( = .001), ER-α ( = .001), VEGF ( < .001) and JNA recurrence ( = .009), was an independent prognostic factor of time to recurrence ( = .017). The combination of HSP90 and ER-α had a better power to predict disease recurrence than other clinicopathological features ( = .008).

Conclusions: HSP90 may be an independent prognostic marker in JNA patients administered surgical treatment. Combination of HSP90 and ER-α expression may be the best predictor of tumor recurrence among all clinicopathological factors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/19458924211012820DOI Listing
May 2021

Distinct patterns of abundant and rare subcommunities in paddy soil during wetting-drying cycles.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Apr 24;785:147298. Epub 2021 Apr 24.

Key Laboratory of Urban Environment and Health, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 1799 Jimei Road, Xiamen, Fujian 361021, China. Electronic address:

Wetting-drying cycles typically result in a wide range of soil moistures and redox potentials (Eh) that significantly affect the soil microbial community. Although numerous studies have addressed the effects of soil moisture on soil microbial community structure and composition, the response of active microbes to the fluctuation in soil Eh is still largely unknown; this is especially true for the ecological roles of abundant and rare taxa. To explore the dynamics of active and total microbial communities in response to wetting-drying cycles, we conducted a microcosm experiment based on three wetting-drying cycles and 16S rRNA transcript (active) and 16S rRNA gene (total) amplicon sequencing. We found that both active and total microbial communities during three wetting-drying cycles were clustered according to the number of wetting-drying cycles (temporal factor) rather than soil moisture or Eh. Dynamics of the active microbial community, however, were redox dependent during the first wetting-drying cycle. In addition, rare taxa in the active microbial community exhibited more obvious differences than abundant ones during three wetting-drying cycles. Species turnover of abundant and rare taxa of total and active microbes, rather than species richness, explained the highest percentage of community variation. Rare taxa exhibited the most marked temporal turnover during three wetting-drying cycles. Members of Rhodospirillaceae were the major contributor to the resilience of abundant taxa of active microbes during the first wetting-drying cycle. Overall, these findings expand our current understanding of underlying assembly mechanisms of soil microbial communities responding to wetting-drying cycles.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.147298DOI Listing
April 2021

An Improved System to Evaluate Superoxide-Scavenging Effects of Bioflavonoids.

ChemistryOpen 2021 Apr;10(4):503-514

State Key Laboratory Breeding Base of Green Pesticide & Agricultural Bioengineering, Key Laboratory of Green Pesticide & Agricultural Bioengineering, Ministry of Education, State-Local Joint Laboratory for Comprehensive Utilization of Biomass, Center for R&D of Fine Chemicals, Guizhou University, Guiyang, Guizhou, 550025, China.

The pyrogallol autoxidation method has been widely utilized to evaluate various antioxidants in antioxidative bioactivities. However, this method is generally not appropriate for estimating the O radical scavenging capacity of bioflavonoids, as it enables bioflavonoids to generate O radical in oxygen-alkaline (pH 8.2) surroundings. In the present study, an improved DMSO (dimethyl sulfoxide) system (pH 7.25, versus pH 8.2 of the pyrogallol autoxidation) was successfully developed to evaluate the O radical scavenging capacity of bioflavonoids by EPR technique and using the spin trapping reagent DMPO (5,5-dimethyl-1-pyrroline-N-oxide). The non-protonic environment supplied by the system promotes the stabilization of the O radical and therefore ensures a much more accurate measurement of O radical scavenging capacity in bioflavonoids if compared to protonic solvents. The results demonstrated that the effects of scavenging O radicals in natural bioflavonoids follows the order: dihydromyricetin>myricetin>quercetin>kaempferol>baicalein>chrysin, which are well associated with numbers of hydroxyl groups attached to their molecular skeletons and/or active H of their configurations. Interestingly, the higher superoxide-anion scavenging effect measured for dihydromyricetin with respect to myricetin is possibly attributed to the fact that dihydromyricetin can be transformed into myricetin in the presence of O radical, resulting from the homolysis of active H donated from C3-H bond of DMY via O radicals.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/open.202100013DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8080285PMC
April 2021

Proguithera caspersi/, a new cavernicolous thread-legged bug species (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Reduviidae: Emesinae) from Hainan, China.

Zootaxa 2021 Apr 19;4963(2):zootaxa.4963.2.6. Epub 2021 Apr 19.

Department of Entomology and MOA Key Lab of Pest Monitoring and Green Management, College of Plant Protection, China Agricultural University, Yuanmingyuan West Road, Beijing 100193, China.

The thread-legged bug genus Proguithera Wygodzinsky, 1966 is recorded from China for the first time, and a new species, P. caspersi sp. nov., is described and illustrated. The new species is cavernicolous and was collected on the walls of a cave together with another emesine species Myiophanes tipulina Reuter, 1881. The type species of the genus, P. drescheri (Wygodzinsky, 1966), is re-diagnosed based on the examination of the holotype. An updated key to species of the Guithera-Lutevula genus group is provided.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4963.2.6DOI Listing
April 2021

The mitogenome of the scale insect Borchsenius, 1955 (Coccoidea: Coccidae).

Mitochondrial DNA B Resour 2021 Apr 4;6(4):1298-1299. Epub 2021 Apr 4.

The Key Laboratory for Silviculture and Conservation of Ministry of Education, Beijing Forestry University, Beijing, PR China.

The complete mitochondrial genome of is described in this study. The complete mitogenome is a 15,162 bp circular DNA molecule with a high A + T content of 82.5%, containing the typical 37 genes. A novel gene rearrangement is detected in the mitogenome. The phylogenetic result supports the monophyly of Coccoidea and the closer relationship between the Ceroplastinae and Coccinae.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/23802359.2021.1906175DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8023595PMC
April 2021

Global phylogeography and invasion history of the spotted lanternfly revealed by mitochondrial phylogenomics.

Evol Appl 2021 Apr 14;14(4):915-930. Epub 2020 Dec 14.

Department of Entomology MOA Key Lab of Pest Monitoring and Green Management College of Plant Protection China Agricultural University Beijing China.

Biological invasion has been a serious global threat due to increasing international trade and population movements. Tracking the source and route of invasive species and evaluating the genetic differences in their native regions have great significance for the effective monitoring and management, and further resolving the invasive mechanism. The spotted lanternfly is native to China and invaded South Korea, Japan, and the United States during the last decade, causing severe damages to the fruits and timber industries. However, its global phylogeographic pattern and invasion history are not clearly understood. We applied high-throughput sequencing to obtain 392 whole mitochondrial genome sequences from four countries to ascertain the origin, dispersal, and invasion history of the spotted lanternfly. Phylogenomic analyses revealed that the spotted lanternfly originated from southwestern China, diverged into six phylogeographic lineages, and experienced northward expansion across the Yangtze River in the late Pleistocene. South Korea populations were derived from multiple invasions from eastern China and Japan with two different genetic sources of northwestern (Loess Plateau) and eastern (East Plain) lineages in China, whereas the each of Japan and the United States had only one. The United States populations originated through single invasive event from South Korea, which served as a bridgehead of invasion. The environmental conditions, especially the distribution of host Ailanthus trees, and adaptability possibly account for the rapid spread of the spotted lanternfly in the native and introduced regions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/eva.13170DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8061274PMC
April 2021

The Prediction of Acute Postoperative Pain Based on Neural Oscillations Measured before the Surgery.

Neural Plast 2021 9;2021:5543974. Epub 2021 Apr 9.

Department of Anesthesiology, Peking University People's Hospital, Beijing, China.

Even with an improved understanding of pain mechanisms and advances in perioperative pain management, inadequately controlled postoperative pain remains. Predicting acute postoperative pain based on presurgery physiological measures could provide valuable insights into individualized, effective analgesic strategies, thus helping improve the analgesic efficacy. Considering the strong correlation between pain perception and neural oscillations, we hypothesize that acute postoperative pain could be predicted by neural oscillations measured shortly before the surgery. Here, we explored the relationship between neural oscillations 2 hours before the thoracoscopic surgery and the subjective intensity of acute postoperative pain. The spectral power density of resting-state beta and gamma band oscillations at the frontocentral region was significantly different between patients with different levels of acute postoperative pain (i.e., low pain vs. moderate/high pain). A positive correlation was also observed between the spectral power density of resting-state beta and gamma band oscillations and subjective reports of postoperative pain. Then, we predicted the level of acute postoperative pain based on features of neural oscillations using machine learning techniques, which achieved a prediction accuracy of 92.54% and a correlation coefficient between the real pain intensities and the predicted pain intensities of 0.84. Altogether, the prediction of acute postoperative pain based on neural oscillations measured before the surgery is feasible and could meet the clinical needs in the future for better control of postoperative pain and other unwanted negative effects. The study was registered on the Clinical Trial Registry (https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT03761576?term=NCT03761576&draw=2&rank=1) with the registration number NCT03761576.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2021/5543974DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8052183PMC
April 2021

Transdermal Delivery of Adipocyte Phospholipase A2 siRNA using Microneedles to Treat Thyroid Associated Ophthalmopathy-Related Proptosis.

Cell Transplant 2021 Jan-Dec;30:9636897211010633

Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Faculty of Medicine, 26451The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, New Territories, Hong Kong, China.

Thyroid associated ophthalmopathy (TAO) is an organ-specific autoimmune disease occurring in patients with thyroid disease. Patients with TAO-related proptosis is largely due to excessive orbital adipose tissue Adipocyte phospholipase A2 (AdPLA) is one of the most important regulatory factors in adipocyte lipolysis, which may be associated with TAO-related proptosis. Thus, silencing AdPLA by RNA interference may be beneficial for the treatment of TAO. In this study, we sought to evaluate the efficiency of two types of microneedles to deliver siRNAs for silencing AdPLA. Our results showed that AdPLA mRNA was up-regulated in the orbit adipose tissues from TAO patients. Silence of AdPLA by siRNA can reduce lipid accumulation in both human and mouse adipocyte cell lines. Moreover, silence effects of silicon microneedle array patch-based and injectable microneedle device-based siRNA administration were examined at the belly site of the mice, and injectable microneedle device showed higher knockdown efficiency than silicon microneedle array patch. This study sets the stage not only for future treatment of TAO-related proptosis using AdPLA siRNA, but also provides the foundation for targeted siRNA delivery by using microneedles.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/09636897211010633DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8072820PMC
April 2021

Transcriptomic analysis to identify genes associated with selective hippocampal vulnerability in Alzheimer's disease.

Nat Commun 2021 04 19;12(1):2311. Epub 2021 Apr 19.

Department of Neuroscience, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL, USA.

Selective vulnerability of different brain regions is seen in many neurodegenerative disorders. The hippocampus and cortex are selectively vulnerable in Alzheimer's disease (AD), however the degree of involvement of the different brain regions differs among patients. We classified corticolimbic patterns of neurofibrillary tangles in postmortem tissue to capture extreme and representative phenotypes. We combined bulk RNA sequencing with digital pathology to examine hippocampal vulnerability in AD. We identified hippocampal gene expression changes associated with hippocampal vulnerability and used machine learning to identify genes that were associated with AD neuropathology, including SERPINA5, RYBP, SLC38A2, FEM1B, and PYDC1. Further histologic and biochemical analyses suggested SERPINA5 expression is associated with tau expression in the brain. Our study highlights the importance of embracing heterogeneity of the human brain in disease to identify disease-relevant gene expression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-22399-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8055900PMC
April 2021

Design, Synthesis, and Structure-Activity Relationship of Quinazolinone Derivatives as Potential Fungicides.

J Agric Food Chem 2021 Apr 19;69(16):4604-4614. Epub 2021 Apr 19.

School of Pharmacy, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000, People's Republic of China.

Plant diseases caused by phytopathogenic fungi reduce the yield and quality of crops. To develop novel antifungal agents, we designed and synthesized eight series of quinazolinone derivatives and evaluated their anti-phytopathogenic fungal activity. The bioassay results revealed that compounds , , , , , , and exhibited remarkable antifungal activity . Especially, compound displayed the highest bioactivity against , , , and , displaying appreciable IC values (50% inhibitory concentration) of 2.46, 2.94, 6.03, and 11.9 μg/mL, respectively. A further mechanism interrogation revealed abnormal mycelia, damaged organelles, and changed permeability of cell membranes in treated with compound . In addition, the bioassay indicated that compound possessed comparable curative and protective effects (87.3 and 90.7%, respectively) to the positive control azoxystrobin (89.5 and 91.2%, respectively) at 100 μg/mL concentration against . This work validated the potential of compound as a new and promising fungicide candidate, contributing to the exploration of potent antifungal agents.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jafc.0c05475DOI Listing
April 2021

Influence of the Rear Interface on Composition and Photoluminescence Yield of CZTSSe Absorbers: A Case for an AlO Intermediate Layer.

ACS Appl Mater Interfaces 2021 Apr 18;13(16):19487-19496. Epub 2021 Apr 18.

Laboratory for Thin Films and Photovoltaics, Empa-Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology, Ueberlandstrasse 129, Dübendorf 8600, Switzerland.

The rear interface of kesterite absorbers with Mo back contact represents one of the possible sources of nonradiative voltage losses (Δ) because of the reported decomposition reactions, an uncontrolled growth of MoSe, or a nonoptimal electrical contact with high recombination. Several intermediate layers (IL), such as MoO, TiN, and ZnO, have been tested to mitigate these issues, and efficiency improvements have been reported. However, the introduction of IL also triggers other effects such as changes in alkali diffusion, altered morphology, and modifications in the absorber composition, all factors that can also influence Δ. In this study, the different effects are decoupled by designing a special sample that directly compares four rear structures (SLG, SLG/Mo, SLG/AlO, and SLG/Mo/AlO) with a Na-doped kesterite absorber optimized for a device efficiency >10%. The IL of choice is AlO because of its reported beneficial effect to reduce the surface recombination velocity at the rear interface of solar cell absorbers. Identical annealing conditions and alkali distribution in the kesterite absorber are preserved, as measured by time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy. The lowest Δ of 290 mV is measured for kesterite grown on Mo, whereas the kesterite absorber on AlO exhibits higher nonradiative losses up to 350 mV. The anticipated field-effect passivation from AlO at the rear interface could not be observed for the kesterite absorbers prepared by the two-step process, further confirmed by an additional experiment with air annealing. Our results suggest that Mo with an in situ formed MoSe remains a suitable back contact for high-efficiency kesterite devices.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsami.1c02437DOI Listing
April 2021

Sexism-Related Stigma Affects Pain Perception.

Neural Plast 2021 27;2021:6612456. Epub 2021 Mar 27.

CAS Key Laboratory of Behavioral Science, Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China.

People with stigmatized characteristics tend to be devalued by others in a given society. The negative experiences related to stigma cause individuals to struggle as they would if they were in physical pain and bring various negative outcomes in the way that physical pain does. However, it is unclear whether stigma related to one's identity would affect their perception of physical pain. To address this issue, using sexism-related paradigms, we found that females had reduced pain threshold/tolerance in the Cold Pressor Test (Experiment 1) and an increased rating for nociceptive laser stimuli with fixed intensity (Experiment 2). Additionally, we observed that there was a larger laser-evoked N1, an early laser-evoked P2, and a larger magnitude of low-frequency component in laser-evoked potentials (LEPs) in the stigma condition than in the control condition (Experiment 3). Our study provides behavioral and electrophysiological evidence that sexism-related stigma affects the pain perception of females.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2021/6612456DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8019650PMC
March 2021

Machine Learning and Systems Biology Approaches to Characterize Dosage-Based Gene Dependencies in Cancer Cells.

J Bioinform Syst Biol 2021 26;4(1):13-32. Epub 2021 Feb 26.

Center for Individualized Medicine, Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, MN, USA.

Mapping of cancer survivability factors allows for the identification of novel biological insights for drug targeting. Using genomic editing techniques, gene dependencies can be extracted in a high-throughput and quantitative manner. Dependencies have been predicted using machine learning techniques on -omics data, but the biological consequences of dependency predictor pairs has not been explored. In this work we devised a framework to explore gene dependency using an ensemble of machine learning methods, and our learned models captured meaningful biological information beyond just gene dependency prediction. We show that dosage-based dependent predictors (DDPs) primarily belonged to transcriptional regulation ontologies. We also found that anti-sense RNAs and long- noncoding RNA transcripts display DDPs. Network analyses revealed that SOX10, HLA-J, and ZEB2 act as a triad of network hubs in the dependent-predictor network. Collectively, we demonstrate the powerful combination of machine learning and systems biology approach can illuminate new insights in understanding gene dependency and guide novel targeting avenues.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8031731PMC
February 2021

Single Living Cell Analysis Nanoplatform for High-Throughput Interrogation of Gene Mutation and Cellular Behavior.

Nano Lett 2021 Apr 8. Epub 2021 Apr 8.

Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Biomedical Engineering, School of Biological Science and Medical Engineering, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, China.

The genetic heterogeneities in cancer cells pose challenges to achieving precise drug treatment in a widely applicable manner. Most single-cell gene analysis methods rely on cell lysis for gene extraction and identification, showing limited capacity to provide the correlation of genetic properties and real-time cellular behaviors. Here, we report a single living cell analysis nanoplatform that enables interrogating gene properties and drug resistance in millions of single cells. We designed a Domino-probe to identify intracellular target RNAs while releasing 10-fold amplified fluorescence signals. An on-chip addressable microwell-nanopore array was developed for enhanced electro-delivery of the Domino-probe and in situ observation of cell behaviors. The proof-of-concept of the system was validated in primary lung cancer cell samples, revealing the positive-correlation of the ratio of EGFR mutant cells with their drug susceptibilities. This platform provides a high-throughput yet precise tool for exploring the relationship between intracellular genes and cell behaviors at the single-cell level.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.nanolett.1c00199DOI Listing
April 2021

A rare germline CDKN2A variant (47T>G; p16-L16R) predisposes carriers to pancreatic cancer by reducing cell cycle inhibition.

J Biol Chem 2021 Apr 3:100634. Epub 2021 Apr 3.

Schulze Center for Novel Therapeutics, Division of Oncology Research. Electronic address:

Germline mutations in CDKN2A, encoding the tumor suppressor p16, are responsible for a large proportion of familial melanoma cases, and also increase risk of pancreatic cancer. We identified four families through pancreatic cancer probands that were affected by both cancers. These families bore a germline missense variant of CDKN2A (47T>G), encoding a p16-L16R mutant protein associated with high cancer occurrence. Here, we investigated the biological significance of this variant. When transfected into p16-null pancreatic cancer cells, p16-L16R was expressed at lower levels than wild type (WT) p16. In addition, p16-L16R was unable to bind CDK4 or CDK6 compared to WT p16, as shown by coimmunoprecipitation assays ,and also was impaired in its ability to inhibit the cell cycle, as demonstrated by flow cytometry analyses. In silico molecular modeling predicted that the L16R mutation prevents normal protein folding, consistent with the observed reduction in expression/stability and diminished function of this mutant protein. We isolated normal dermal fibroblasts from members of the families expressing WT or L16R proteins to investigate the impact of endogenous p16-L16R mutant protein on cell growth. In culture, p16-L16R fibroblasts grew at a faster rate, and most survived until later passages than p16-WT fibroblasts. Further, Western blotting demonstrated that p16 protein was detected at lower levels in p16-L16R than in p16-WT fibroblasts. Together, these results suggest that the presence of a are CDKN2A (47T>G) mutant allele contributes to an increased risk of pancreatic cancer as a result of reduced p16 protein levels and diminished p16 tumor suppressor function.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbc.2021.100634DOI Listing
April 2021

Ameliorates Experimental Allergic Airway Inflammation Activation of ICOSTregs and Inhibition of Th2 Response.

Front Immunol 2021 17;12:620943. Epub 2021 Mar 17.

ENT Institute and Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Eye & ENT Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.

Inhibition of allergic airway diseases (AAD) by immunomodulation of the adaptive immune system through restoration of the enteric dysbiosis is an emerging therapeutic strategy. Patients with allergic rhinitis (n = 6) and healthy controls (n = 6) were enrolled, and gut microbiome composition analysis was performed by 16S rDNA sequencing. We also established an ovalbumin (OVA)-induced allergic airway inflammation murine model. Dysbiosis of the gut flora was observed in both AAD patients and the mice, with the decrease of the biodiversity and the quantity of the Bacteroidetes phylum. Oral application of ameliorated the symptoms of OVA-induced airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR) and attenuated the airway inflammation in mice. In addition, nasal lavage fluid (NALF) and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) from AAD mice orally administered with showed reduced numbers of immune cells, and diminished secretion of T helper (Th)-2 cytokines (IL-4, IL-5, and IL-13) compared with the corresponding control mice, whereas the levels of Th1 cytokineIFN-γ was not changed in both the groups. When was co-administered with metronidazole in AAD mice, the immunomodulatory effect was weakened and the allergic inflammatory response was aggravated. The ratios of CD4Foxp3 cells, CD4ICOS T cells, CD4ICOS Foxp3 regulatory T cells, and IL-10-expressing CD4Foxp3 cells were increased in lymphocytes of spleen, mesenteric, and cervical lymph nodes of AAD mice administrated with . Therefore, our data indicate that oral administration of effectively inhibited the development of AAD in murine model; inhibition was mediated by the activation of Tregs and inhibition of Th2 response without promoting a Th1 response.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2021.620943DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8010693PMC
March 2021

Urban greenness and plant species are key factors in shaping air microbiomes and reducing airborne pathogens.

Environ Int 2021 Apr 1;153:106539. Epub 2021 Apr 1.

Key Lab of Urban Environment and Health, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xiamen 361021, China; Center for Excellence in Regional Atmospheric Environment, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xiamen 361021, China; University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, 19A Yuquan Road, Beijing 100049, China. Electronic address:

Urban green space has been implicated in shaping airborne microbes, but there is an only rudimentary understanding of the key factors of urban green space affecting the composition and structures of airborne microbes. Here, we selected 40 urban sites based on stratified random sampling design and investigated the effects of multiple factors including landscapes, plant, soil, and anthropogenic factors on airborne microbial communities, especially bacterial and fungal pathogens. Bacterial and fungal communities in the control area with lower greenness were significantly (P < 0.05) different from those in other areas with a gradient of green space. The relative abundance of bacterial and fungal pathogens significantly (P < 0.05) decreased with increasing greenness. Other than soil thickness, soil type, slope position, and population density, plant species considerably contributed to the shift in the composition and abundance of potential bacterial and fungal pathogens. A significantly (P < 0.05) reduced abundance of bacterial and fungal pathogens was observed in areas with >30% masson pine. Together, these results provide insights into the importance of green space for providing health benefits for city dwellers by reducing pathogens in air, as well as providing support for the inclusion of plant species in the management of urban green space to reduce exposure risk of airborne pathogens.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envint.2021.106539DOI Listing
April 2021

Integrative Taxonomy of the Spinous Assassin Bug Genus (Heteroptera: Reduviidae: Harpactorinae) Reveals Three Cryptic Species Based on DNA Barcoding and Morphological Evidence.

Insects 2021 Mar 16;12(3). Epub 2021 Mar 16.

MOA Key Lab of Pest Monitoring and Green Management, Department of Entomology, College of Plant Protection, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193, China.

Stål, 1861 (Heteroptera: Reduviidae: Harpactorinae) is endemic to China and Vietnam, with only two species, Stål, 1861 and Ren, 2001, characterized by spinous body and dentate abdominal connexivum. However, due to variable morphological characteristics, , which is widely distributed in South China, is possibly a complex of cryptic species, and was suspected to be an extreme group of the cline. In the present study, we conducted species delimitation and phylogenetic analyses based on the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I () gene sequences of 307 specimens collected from 30 sampling localities combined with morphological evidence. The result showed that all samples used in this study were identified as five species: is a valid species, and actually includes three cryptic species: P. Zhao and Cai sp. nov., P. Zhao and Cai sp. nov., and P. Zhao and Cai sp. nov. In this paper, the genus is systematically revised, and the morphological characteristics of the five species are compared, described, and photographed in detail. We elucidate the evolutionary history of based on results of estimated divergence time. The body shape and coloration (green in nymph and brown in adult) of match their environment and mimic the plants on which they live. The symbiotic relationship between and spinous plants is presented and discussed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/insects12030251DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8001484PMC
March 2021

Co-effect of cadmium and iron oxide nanoparticles on plasmid-mediated conjugative transfer of antibiotic resistance genes.

Environ Int 2021 07 30;152:106453. Epub 2021 Mar 30.

Key Laboratory of Urban Environment and Health, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 1799 Jimei Road, Xiamen 361021, China.

Conjunctive transfer of antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) among bacteria driven by plasmids facilitated the evolution and spread of antibiotic resistance. Heavy metal exposure accelerated the plasmid-mediated conjunctive transfer of ARGs. Nanomaterials are well-known adsorbents for heavy metals removal, with the capability of combatting resistant bacteria/facilitating conjunctive transfer of ARGs. However, co-effect of heavy metals and nanomaterials on plasmid-mediated conjunctive transfer of ARGs was still unknown. In this study, we investigated the effect of the simultaneous exposure of Cd and nano FeO on conjugative transfer of plasmid RP4 from Pseudomonas putida KT2442 to water microbial community. The permeability of bacterial cell membranes, antioxidant enzyme activities and conjugation gene expression were also investigated. The results suggested that the combination of Cd and high concentration nano FeO (10 mg/L and 100 mg/L) significantly increased conjugative transfer frequencies of RP4 plasmid (p < 0.05). The most transconjugants were detected in the treatment of co-exposure to Cd and nano FeO, the majority of which were identified to be human pathogens. The mechanisms of the exacerbated conjugative transfer of ARGs were involved in the enhancement of cell membrane permeability, antioxidant enzyme activities, and mRNA expression levels of the conjugation genes by the co-effect of Cd and nano FeO. This study confirmed that the simultaneous exposure to Cdand nano FeO exerted a synergetic co-effect on plasmid-mediated conjunctive transfer of ARGs, emphasizing that the co-effect of nanomaterials and heavy metals should be prudently evaluated when combating antibiotic resistance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envint.2021.106453DOI Listing
July 2021

[Effect of regulating menstruation and promoting pregnancy acupuncture therapy on negative emotion in patients with premature ovarian insufficiency].

Zhongguo Zhen Jiu 2021 Mar;41(3):279-82

Department of Acupuncture and Moxibustion, Affiliated Hospital of Shandong University of TCM.

Objective: To observe the influence of regulating menstruation and promoting pregnancy acupuncture therapy on negative emotions in patients with premature ovarian insufficiency (POI).

Methods: A total of 60 patients with POI were randomly divided into an acupuncture group and a western medication group, 30 cases in each group. The acupuncture group was treated with regulating menstruation and promoting pregnancy acupuncture therapy at Baihui (GV 20), Shenting (GV 24), Guanyuan (CV 4), Sanyinjiao (SP 6), Shenshu (BL 23), Ciliao (BL 32), etc. once a day, 5 times a week for 3 months. The western medication group was treated by oral administration of climen. The drug was given 1 tablet a day for 21 days and was stopped for 1 week as a course. The treatment was required 3 consecutive courses. The self-rating anxiety scale (SAS) score, modified Kupperman index (KI) score, agitated and depressive symptom scores in KI and serum level of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) before and after treatment were compared between the two groups.

Results: After treatment, the SAS scores, KI scores and serum levels of FSH in the two groups and the scores of agitated and depressive symptom in the acupuncture group were lower than those before treatment (<0.05), and the acupuncture group was lower than the western medication group (<0.05).

Conclusion: Regulating menstruation and promoting pregnancy acupuncture therapy can effectively improve the negative emotions of patients with POI and reduce serum level of FSH .
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http://dx.doi.org/10.13703/j.0255-2930.20200307-0004DOI Listing
March 2021

The natural hybridization between species and (Senecioneae, Asteraceae) suggests underdeveloped reproductive isolation and ambiguous intergeneric boundary.

AoB Plants 2021 Apr 4;13(2):plab012. Epub 2021 Mar 4.

CAS Key Laboratory for Plant Diversity and Biogeography of East Asia, Kunming Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming 650201, China.

Natural hybridization is frequent in plants and is considered an important factor facilitating speciation. The natural intergeneric hybridization between and was previously confirmed using a couple of DNA markers. However, the mechanism of this intergeneric hybridization and the role of reproductive isolation in the process of hybridization remain unclear. Here we used double-digest restriction site-associated DNA sequencing (ddRAD-seq) to further quantify the occurrence of hybridization, the genetic structure of the hybrid population and the role of reproductive isolation between and . The results based on the ddRAD-seq SNP data sets indicated that hybridization between and was restricted to Fs, and no gene introgression was identified between these two species. STRUCTURE analysis and maximum likelihood (ML) tree results showed a slightly larger genetic contribution of to putative hybrid Fs. We deduced that the reproductive isolation between these two parent species is not well-developed but still strong enough to maintain the genetic integrity of the species, and that their Fs are sterile or with low fertility. Given the poorly resolved phylogenetic relationship between and , the occurrence of natural hybridization between and may provide new insights into the re-circumscription and re-delimitation of these two genera.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/aobpla/plab012DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7994929PMC
April 2021

Long- and short-ranged chiral interactions in DNA-assembled plasmonic chains.

Nat Commun 2021 04 1;12(1):2025. Epub 2021 Apr 1.

Faculty of Physics, Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich, Germany.

Circular dichroism (CD) has long been used to trace chiral molecular states and changes of protein configurations. In recent years, chiral plasmonic nanostructures have shown potential for applications ranging from pathogen sensing to novel optical materials. The plasmonic coupling of the individual elements of such metallic structures is a crucial prerequisite to obtain sizeable CD signals. We here identify and implement various coupling entities-chiral and achiral-to demonstrate chiral transfer over distances close to 100 nm. The coupling is realized by an achiral nanosphere situated between a pair of gold nanorods that are arranged far apart but in a chiral fashion using DNA origami. The transmitter particle causes a strong enhancement of the CD response, the emergence of an additional chiral feature at the resonance frequency of the nanosphere, and a redshift of the longitudinal plasmonic resonance frequency of the nanorods. Matching numerical simulations elucidate the intricate chiral optical fields in complex architectures.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-22289-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8016906PMC
April 2021

Miniature Seed6, encoding an endoplasmic reticulum signal peptidase, is critical in seed development.

Plant Physiol 2021 Apr;185(3):985-1001

State Key Laboratory of Plant Physiology and Biochemistry and National Maize Improvement Center, Department of Plant Genetics and Breeding, China Agricultural University, Beijing, 100193, P. R. China.

Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) type I signal peptidases (ER SPases I) are vital proteases that cleave signal peptides from secreted proteins. However, the specific function of ER SPase I in plants has not been genetically characterized, and the substrate is largely unknown. Here, we report the identification of a maize (Zea mays) miniature seed6 (mn6) mutant. The loss-of-function mn6 mutant exhibited severely reduced endosperm size. Map-based cloning and molecular characterization indicated that Mn6 is an S26-family ER SPase I, with Gly102 (box E) in Mn6 critical for protein function during processing. Mass spectrometric and immunoprecipitation analyses revealed that Mn6 is predominantly involved in processing carbohydrate synthesis-related proteins, including the cell wall invertase miniature seed1 (Mn1), which is specifically expressed in the basal endosperm transfer layer. RNA and protein expression levels of Mn1 were both significantly downregulated in the mn6 mutant. Due to the significant reduction in cell wall invertase activity in the transfer cell layer, mutation of Mn6 caused dramatic defects in endosperm development. These results suggest that proper maturation of Mn1 by Mn6 may be a crucial step for proper seed filling and maize development.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/plphys/kiaa060DOI Listing
April 2021

A systematic review and meta-analyses on the prevalence of pregnancy outcomes in migraine treated patients: a contribution from the IMI2 ConcePTION project.

J Neurol 2021 Apr 1. Epub 2021 Apr 1.

Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, One Health Plaza, Building 339-1131, East Hanover, NJ, 07936-1080, USA.

The present study aims to summarize the safety profile of the medications used to treat migraine during pregnancy by performing a systematic review and meta-analyses. The term "migrain*" combined with pregnancy terms were used to search Embase, PubMed, PsychInfo, Scopus, and Web of Science through 31 December 2020. Pooled prevalences of untreated and treated migraine patients were estimated using MetaXL software. Pooled odds ratios (OR) using random effects models were estimated in RevMan 5. All the identified studies assessed medications used to treat acute migraine. The pooled prevalence of adverse pregnancy outcomes in patients prescribed any migraine medication ranged from 0.4% (95% CI 0.2-0.7%) for stillbirth to 12.0% (95%CI 7.8-16.9%) for spontaneous abortions. Among untreated patients with migraine, the pooled prevalence of the assessed pregnancy outcomes ranged from 0.6% (95% CI: 0-1.7%) for stillbirth to 10.4% (95% CI: 8.9-12%) for gestational age < 37 weeks. Given the limited data, it was only possible to perform OR meta-analyses for triptans. The adjusted ORs for triptan users compared the general population were: for major malformations 1.07 (95%CI: 0.83-1.39, p = 0.60); birth weight < 2500g 1.18 (95%CI: 0.94-1.48, p = 0.16); gestational age < 37 weeks 1.49 (95% CI: 0.37-6.08, p = 0.58). In conclusion, triptans do not appear to increase the risk of pregnancy outcomes when compared to the general population. It was not possible to assess other migraine medications. Further studies are needed to investigate the safety of individual medications of acute and prophylactic migraine treatment among pregnant women.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00415-021-10534-5DOI Listing
April 2021

Bacterial communities are more sensitive to ocean acidification than fungal communities in estuarine sediments.

FEMS Microbiol Ecol 2021 04;97(5)

Key Laboratory of Urban Environment and Health, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 1799 Jimei Road, Xiamen 361021, China.

Ocean acidification (OA) in estuaries is becoming a global concern, and may affect microbial characteristics in estuarine sediments. Bacterial communities in response to acidification in this habitat have been well discussed; however, knowledge about how fungal communities respond to OA remains poorly understood. Here, we explored the effects of acidification on bacterial and fungal activities, structures and functions in estuarine sediments during a 50-day incubation experiment. Under acidified conditions, activities of three extracellular enzymes related to nutrient cycling were inhibited and basal respiration rates were decreased. Acidification significantly altered bacterial communities and their interactions, while weak alkalization had a minor impact on fungal communities. We distinguished pH-sensitive/tolerant bacteria and fungi in estuarine sediments, and found that only pH-sensitive/tolerant bacteria had strong correlations with sediment basal respiration activity. FUNGuild analysis indicated that animal pathogen abundances in sediment were greatly increased by acidification, while plant pathogens were unaffected. High-throughput quantitative PCR-based SmartChip analysis suggested that the nutrient cycling-related multifunctionality of sediments was reduced under acidified conditions. Most functional genes associated with nutrient cycling were identified in bacterial communities and their relative abundances were decreased by acidification. These new findings highlight that acidification in estuarine regions affects bacterial and fungal communities differently, increases potential pathogens and disrupts bacteria-mediated nutrient cycling.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/femsec/fiab058DOI Listing
April 2021

[Effect of electroacupuncture combined with aerobic exercise on IGF-I /Akt pathway in skeletal muscle of aging rats].

Zhongguo Gu Shang 2021 Mar;34(3):275-81

School of Acupuncture and Massage, Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Shanghai, 201203, China.

Objective: To explore the effects of low-frequency electroacupuncture combined with aerobic exercise on sarocopenia, and the effects of IGF-I /Akt and its downstream signaling pathway-related protein.

Methods: Naturally aging SD rats were used as research objects. Thirty-two 6-month-old male SD rats weighing 400 to 450 g were bred to 12-month-old and randomly divided into 4 groups according to body weight:Control group(YC, only grasp, fix, put back, without other intervention), electroacupuncture group (YA, electroacupuncture intervention), exercise group (YE, exercise intervention) and electroacupuncture+exercise group (YEA, electroacupuncture combined with exercise intervention). SD rats were continuously intervened from 12 months to 18 months of age. At the end of the experiment, the conditions of naturally aging rats in each group were observed:skeletal muscle wet weight / weight ratio;HE staining morphology of soleus muscle under light microscope; qPCR was used to detect the expression level of IGF-I mRNA in skeletal muscle;the expression of AKT, mTOR, p70S6K and p-p70S6K proteins in rat gastrocnemius was determined by Western blot.

Results: In 18-month-old rats, the intervention period was 6 months. (1) Compared with YC group, YA group and YEA group significantly increased the wet weight / body weight ratio of gastrocnemius muscle in 18 months old rats. YEA group could significantly increase the wet weight / body weight ratio of soleus muscle compared with YC group YC group and YA group (<0.05). (2) Compared with YC group, the increase of the expression of IGF-I mRNA in YEA group was more obvious(=0.051). (3)The expression of p-Akt and p-mTOR in YA group was significantly higher than that in YC group (<0.05), and the expressionof p-mTOR, p-p70S6K also showed an increasing trend in YEA group (>0.05).

Conclusion: Electroacupuncture combined with aerobic exercise can attenuate sarocopenia in 18-month-old naturally aging rats. The molecular mechanism may be related to the promotion of protein synthesis by activating the IGF-I / Akt pathway.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12200/j.issn.1003-0034.2021.03.017DOI Listing
March 2021

LncRNA TUG1 promotes Ewing's sarcoma cell proliferation, migration, and invasion via the miR-199a-3p-MSI2 signaling pathway.

Neoplasma 2021 Mar 30. Epub 2021 Mar 30.

Department of Orthopedics, The First Affiliated Hospital of Nanchang University, Nanchang, Jiangxi, China.

The aim of this study was to investigate the roles and potential mechanisms of long non-coding RNA (lncRNA) taurine upregulated gene 1 (TUG1) in the proliferation, migration, and invasion of Ewing's sarcoma cells. RT-qPCR was used to detect the expression of TUG1, microRNA-199a-3p (miR-199a-3p), and musashi2 (MSI2) in Ewing's sarcoma tissues and cell lines. Kaplan-Meier overall survival curves showed the survival rates of Ewing's sarcoma patients with high and low expression of TUG1. The association between the expressions of TUG1/MSI2 and miR-199a-3p in Ewing's sarcoma tissues was assessed by Pearson's correlation analysis. Cell proliferation, migration, and invasion were detected by CCK8 assay and Transwell assay, respectively. The protein level of MSI2 was determined using western blotting. The interaction between TUG1/MSI2 and miR-199a-3p was validated by the dual-luciferase reporter assay. The levels of TUG1 and MSI2 were increased, while the level of miR-199a-3p was decreased in Ewing's sarcoma tissues and cells. High expression of TUG1 or MSI2 indicated a decreased overall survival rate of Ewing's sarcoma patients. TUG1/MSI2 level was negatively correlated with miR-199a-3p level. While TUG1 level was positively correlated with MSI2 level. In Ewing sarcoma cells, knockdown of TUG1/MSI2 or overexpression of miR-199a-3p inhibited cell proliferation, migration, and invasion, whereas the overexpression of TUG1/MSI2 presented the opposite results. TUG1 functioned as a competing endogenous RNA to regulate MSI2 expression by sponging miR-199a-3p. Finally, miR-199a-3p inhibitor or MSI2 overexpression counteracted the TUG1 knockdown-mediated inhibitory effect on Ewing's sarcoma cell proliferation, migration, and invasion. TUG1 promotes proliferation, migration, and invasion of Ewing's sarcoma cells via sequestering miR-199a-3p to enhance the MSI2 expression, suggesting that TUG1 might be a potential target for treating Ewing's sarcoma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4149/neo_2021_201110N1198DOI Listing
March 2021

Establishment and validation of a novel nomogram to predict overall survival in nasopharyngeal carcinoma with lymph node metastasis.

Head Neck 2021 Mar 29. Epub 2021 Mar 29.

Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, Affiliated Eye Ear Nose and Throat Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.

Background: The aim of the present study was to establish and validate a nomogram to predict the overall survival (OS) in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) patients with lymph node metastasis (LNM).

Methods: A novel nomogram was constructed using 863 patients with LNM-positive NPC from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) database. Significant prognostic factors in the nomograms were determined using multivariate Cox risk analysis. The predictive capability was evaluated using calibration curves and decision curve analysis (DCA).

Results: Multivariate analysis identified seven factors that could be used to construct the nomogram: age, pathological type, T stage, M stage, surgery of primary site, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy. The calibration curves and DCA demonstrated optimal agreement. Based on the nomogram, all patients could be stratified into three risk groups: low, middle, and high.

Conclusions: The novel nomogram demonstrated its potential as an individualized tool to predict OS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/hed.26687DOI Listing
March 2021

A modality selective effect of functional laterality in pain detection sensitivity.

Sci Rep 2021 Mar 25;11(1):6883. Epub 2021 Mar 25.

CAS Key Laboratory of Mental Health, Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100101, China.

The ability to detect environmental changes is essential to determine the appropriate reaction when facing potential threats. Both detection and reaction functions are critical to survival, and the superior performance of motor reaction for the dominant hand is well recognized in humans. However, it is not clear whether there exists laterality in sensitivity to detect external changes and whether the possible laterality is associated with sensory modality and stimulus intensity. Here, we tested whether the perceptual sensitivity and electrophysiological responses elicited by graded sensory stimuli (i.e., nociceptive somatosensory, non-nociceptive somatosensory, auditory, and visual) that were delivered on/near the left and right hands would be different for right-handed individuals. We observed that perceived intensities and most brain responses were significantly larger when nociceptive stimuli were delivered to the left side (i.e., the non-dominant hand) than to the right side (i.e., the dominant hand). No significant difference was observed between the two sides for other modalities. The higher sensitivity to detect nociceptive stimuli for the non-dominant hand would be important to provide a prompt reaction to noxious events, thus compensating for its worse motor performance. This laterality phenomenon should be considered when designing experiments for pain laboratory studies and evaluating regional sensory abnormalities for pain patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-85111-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7994376PMC
March 2021