Publications by authors named "Maria I Ramos"

5 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Missense Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid Receptor Polymorphisms Are Associated with Reaction Time, Motor Time, and Ethanol Effects .

Front Cell Neurosci 2018 31;12:10. Epub 2018 Jan 31.

Department of Pharmacology, Universidad de Extremadura, Cáceres, Spain.

The Gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptor (GABA-A receptor) is affected by ethanol concentrations equivalent to those reached during social drinking. At these concentrations, ethanol usually causes impairment in reaction and motor times in most, but not all, individuals. To study the effect of GABA-A receptor variability in motor and reaction times, and the effect of low ethanol doses. Two hundred and fifty healthy subjects received one single dose of 0.5 g/Kg ethanol . Reaction and motor times were determined before ethanol challenge (basal), and when participants reached peak ethanol concentrations. We analyzed all common missense polymorphisms described in the 19 genes coding for the GABA-A receptor subunits by using TaqMan probes. The rs4454083 T/C polymorphisms were related to motor times, with individuals carrying the C/C genotype having faster motor times, both, at basal and at peak ethanol concentrations. The rs2229940 T/T genotype was associated to faster reaction times and with lower ethanol effects, determined as the difference between basal reaction time and reaction time at peak concentrations. All these associations remained significant after correction for multiple comparisons. No significant associations were observed for the common missense SNPs rs12910925, rs211035, rs1139916, rs1063310, rs3810651, rs12200969 or rs1186902, rs282129, and rs832032. This study provides novel information supporting a role of missense GABA-A receptor polymorphisms in reaction time, motor time and effects of low ethanol doses .
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January 2018

Intraspecies geographical variability in the South American tigra mariposa (Bothrops venezuelensis Sandner 1952) snake venom activities.

Toxicon 2018 Mar 31;144:23-33. Epub 2018 Jan 31.

Laboratorio de Inmunoquimica y Ultraestructura, Instituto Anatómico, Universidad Central de Venezuela, Caracas, Venezuela. Electronic address:

Bothrops venezuelensis snake venoms, from five localities in the North-Central Venezuelan regions, showed biochemical and haemostatic differences. In this study, bioactivities of B. venezuelensis venoms from different regions (Aragua state; Waraira Repano (Capital District); Baruta, La Boyera and Lagunetica (Miranda state)) were compared using both natural and synthetic substrates. The protein contents of these venoms were Lagunetica 89%, La Boyera 79%, Baruta 71%, Waraira Repano 68% and Aragua 64%. Toxic activities effects were: Intraperitoneal LDs: Aragua-14 mg/kg; Waraira Repano-6.4 mg/kg; Baruta: 8.3 mg/kg; La Boyera-4.4 mg/kg; Lagunetica-16.2 mg/kg. The MHD results: Aragua-21.4 μg/mouse; Waraira Repano-2.5 μg/mouse; Baruta-1.2 μg/mouse; La Boyera-1.4 μg/mouse and Lagunetica-12 μg/mouse. The hide powder azure results: Aragua-1.24 U/mg; La Boyera-2.26 U/mg; Baruta-2.83 U/mg; Lagunetica-3.28 U/mg and Waraira Repano-5.77 U/mg. Esterase specific activity on BAEE results: Waraira Repano-666.66 U/mg; La Boyera-805.5 U/mg; Baruta-900.00 U/mg; Lagunetica-922.19 U/mg and Aragua-1960.67 U/mg. Casein zymography showed digestion bands in the molecular weight above 100 and at 66.2 and 21.5 kDa. Analysis of casein degradation by SDS-PAGE showed two different degradation patterns. Fibrinolytic activity (mm/μg) on fibrin plates results: Aragua-6.07; Lagunetica-27.6; Waraira Repano-35.7; La Boyera-44.27 and Baruta-45.63. In the fibrinogenolytic assay, the five venoms completely degraded the α chain after 1 min of incubation. None of the venoms completely degraded the β and γ chains after 24 h incubation. The research indicated that venoms of B. venezuelensis of different geographic areas in Venezuela exhibit variances in composition and component concentrations; except the Aragua venom, all of them had high proteolytic activities.
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March 2018

Reduced CLEC9A expression in synovial tissue of psoriatic arthritis patients after adalimumab therapy.

Rheumatology (Oxford) 2016 09 13;55(9):1575-84. Epub 2016 May 13.

Clinical Immunology and Rheumatology Department Experimental Immunology Department

Objectives: We aimed to investigate the early changes in expression of C-type lectin domain family 9, member A (CLEC9A), a C-type lectin that is specifically expressed by the CD141(+) dendritic cell subset that is involved in cross-presentation to CD8(+) T cells, by evaluating gene and/or protein expression in three different compartments [skin, synovial tissue (ST) and serum] after short-term adalimumab treatment in PsA patients compared with placebo.

Methods: Patients with active PsA and psoriasis were randomized to receive adalimumab or placebo for 4 weeks. Synovial and skin biopsies were obtained before and after 4 weeks of treatment and serum samples 4 weeks, 12 weeks and 1 year after treatment. Skin and serum from healthy donors were used as control. CLEC9A expression was assessed by immunohistochemistry, double immunofluorescence using terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase 2'-deoxyuridine 5'-triphosphate nick-end labelling (TUNEL), quantitative PCR and ELISA.

Results: CLEC9A expression was significantly higher in psoriatic skin compared with healthy donor. In psoriatic skin and PsA ST, CLEC9A(+) cells were in close proximity to TUNEL(+) cells. SF CLEC9A levels were significantly lower compared with paired PsA serum. Adalimumab treatment did not affect CLEC9A serum level and skin expression. However, ST CLEC9A protein expression was significantly decreased after adalimumab treatment compared with the placebo group while CLEC9A gene expression remained unchanged. There was a positive correlation between T cell numbers and ST CLEC9A protein expression. CD141(+) cell numbers and chemokine (C motif) receptor 1 expression were not affected with adalimumab treatment.

Conclusion: Altogether, the present study suggests that the downregulation of synovial CLEC9A might be associated with a novel mechanism by which anti-TNF therapy might reduce CD8-mediated inflammation in PsA patients.
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September 2016

FMS-related tyrosine kinase 3 ligand (Flt3L)/CD135 axis in rheumatoid arthritis.

Arthritis Res Ther 2013 ;15(6):R209

Introduction: The FMS-related tyrosine kinase 3 ligand (Flt3L)/CD135 axis plays a fundamental role in proliferation and differentiation of dendritic cells (DCs). As DCs play an important role in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) immunopathology we studied in detail the Flt3L/CD135 axis in RA patients.

Methods: The levels of Flt3L in (paired) serum and synovial fluid (SF) were quantified by enzyme-link immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Expression of Flt3L and CD135 in paired peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and synovial fluid mononuclear cells (SFMCs) was quantified by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). The expression of Flt3L, CD135 and TNF-Converting Enzyme (TACE) in synovial tissues (STs) and in vitro polarized macrophages and monocyte-derived DCs (Mo-DCs) was assessed by quantitative PCR (qPCR). CD135 ST expression was evaluated by immunohistochemistry and TACE ST expression was assessed by immunofluorescence. Flt3L serum levels were assessed in RA patients treated with oral prednisolone or adalimumab.

Results: Flt3L levels in RA serum, SF and ST were significantly elevated compared to gout patients and healthy individuals (HI). RA SF monocytes, natural killer cells and DCs expressed high levels of Flt3L and CD135 compared to HI. RA ST CD68+ and CD163+ macrophages, CD55+ fibroblast-like synoviocytes (FLS), CD31+ endothelial cells or infiltrating monocytes and CD19+ B cells co-expressed TACE. IFN-γ-differentiated macrophages expressed higher levels of Flt3L compared to other polarized macrophages. Importantly, Flt3L serum levels were reduced by effective therapy.

Conclusions: The Flt3L/CD135 axis is active in RA patients and is responsive to both prednisolone and adalimumab treatment. Conceivably, this ligand receptor pair represents a novel therapeutic target.
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November 2014

Variability in ethanol biodisposition in whites is modulated by polymorphisms in the ADH1B and ADH1C genes.

Hepatology 2010 Feb;51(2):491-500

Department of Pharmacology, Medical School, University of Extremadura, Badajoz, Spain.

Unlabelled: Association between genetic variations in alcohol-related enzymes and impaired ethanol biodisposition has not been unambiguously proven, and the effect of many newly described polymorphisms remains to be explored. The aims of this study are to elucidate the influence of genetic factors in alcohol biodisposition and effects. We analyzed alcohol pharmacokinetics and biodisposition after the administration of 0.5 g/kg ethanol; we measured ethanol effects on reaction time and motor time in response to visual and acoustic signals, and we analyzed 13 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNPs) in the genes coding for ADH1B, ADH1C, ALDH2, and CYP2E1 in 250 healthy white individuals. Variability in ethanol pharmacokinetics and biodisposition is related to sex, with women showing a higher area under the curve (AUC) (P = 0.002), maximum concentration (Cmax) (P < 0.001) and metabolic rate (P = 0.001). Four nonsynonymous SNPs are related to decreased alcohol metabolic rates: ADH1B rs6413413 (P = 0.012), ADH1C rs283413 (P < 0.001), rs1693482 (P < 0.001), and rs698 (P < 0.001). Individuals carrying diplotypes combining these mutations display statistically significant decrease in alcohol biodisposition as compared with individuals lacking these mutations. Alcohol effects displayed bimodal distribution independently of sex or pharmacokinetics. Most individuals had significant delays in reaction and motor times at alcohol blood concentrations under 500 mg/L, which are the driving limits for most countries.

Conclusion: Besides the identification of new genetic factors related to alcohol biodisposition relevant to whites, this study provides unambiguous identification of diplotypes related to variability in alcohol biodisposition.
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February 2010