Publications by authors named "Min-Jeong Kim"

490 Publications

Unraveling the phase behavior of cricket protein isolate and alginate in aqueous solution.

Food Chem 2022 Jun 18;394:133527. Epub 2022 Jun 18.

Kangwon Institute of Inclusive Technology (KIIT), 1 Gangwondaehak-gil, Chuncheon-si, Gangwon-do, Republic of Korea; Department of Food Science and Biotechnology, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Kangwon National University, Chuncheon-si, Gangwon-do, Republic of Korea. Electronic address:

The associative phase behavior of cricket protein isolate (CPI) and sodium alginate (AL) in aqueous solutions was explored using turbidimetry, methylene blue spectroscopy, zeta potentiometry, dynamic light scattering, and confocal microscopy as a function of pH, biopolymer ratio, total biopolymer concentration (C), and ionic strength. When both biopolymers had net-negative charges, soluble complexes formed between pH 6.0 and 8.0, however when both biopolymers had opposing net charges, insoluble complexes formed as complex coacervates below pH 5.5, defined as pH, followed by precipitates below another critical pH 3.0 (pH). Increasing the CPI:AL weight ratio or C facilitated complex formation, and the addition of salts (NaCl/KCl) had a salt-enhancement and salt-reduction impact at low and high salt concentrations, respectively. Ionic interactions between oppositely charged CPI and AL were mainly responsible for the formation of their insoluble complexes, while hydrogen bonding and hydrophobic interactions also played significant roles.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2022.133527DOI Listing
June 2022

Anti-obesity Effects of Dark Tea Extracts by Down-regulation of C/EBPα and PPARγ.

In Vivo 2022 Jul-Aug;36(4):1753-1760

College of Veterinary Medicine, Chungbuk National University, Cheongju, Republic of Korea;

Background/aim: Dark tea, made by fermentation of tea leaves using microorganisms, is well known for its antiobesity effect; however, studies to identify this effect have not been sufficiently conducted. Herein, the anti-obesity effects of post-fermented dark tea were studied in high-fat diet mouse.

Materials And Methods: Obesity was induced through a high-fat diet in C57BL/6 mice, and then dark tea extract powder (DTP) was orally administered daily for 12 weeks to evaluate the body and organ weights. Changes in the biochemical markers of obesity were evaluated to study the mechanism of the anti-obesity effects of DTP.

Results: When DTP was administered to obesity mice, the weight and food intake reduced, blood aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), triglyceride (TG), low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C) decreased, whereas high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) increased. Histopathology showed that steatosis and inflammation scores were reduced within the liver and adipocyte sizes were reduced within epididymal adipocyte. In addition, a significant decrease in blood insulin and hepatic TG and a significant increase in blood adiponectin were also confirmed. The results of western blot and qPCR in week 12, showed a significant decrease in the mRNA and protein levels of C/EBPα, and the mRNA levels of PPARγ in the liver.

Conclusion: Dark tea extracts are thought to have an anti-obesity effect by reducing the levels of the main transcription factors that promote adipocyte differentiation, such as C/EBPα, and PPARγ. Therefore, diet products using dark tea extracts could be developed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.21873/invivo.12888DOI Listing
April 2022

Serum biomarker-based osteoporosis risk prediction and the systemic effects of Trifolium pratense ethanolic extract in a postmenopausal model.

Chin Med 2022 Jun 14;17(1):70. Epub 2022 Jun 14.

College of Veterinary Medicine and Cardiovascular Research Institute, Kyungpook National University, 80 Daehak-ro, Daegu, 41566, Republic of Korea.

Background: Recent years, a soaring number of marketed Trifolium pratense (red clover) extract products have denoted that a rising number of consumers are turning to natural alternatives to manage postmenopausal symptoms. T. pratense ethanolic extract (TPEE) showed immense potential for their uses in the treatment of menopause complications including osteoporosis and hormone dependent diseases. Early diagnosis of osteoporosis can increase the chance of efficient treatment and reduce fracture risks. Currently, the most common diagnosis of osteoporosis is performed by using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA). However, the major limitation of DXA is that it is inaccessible and expensive in rural areas to be used for primary care inspection. Hence, serum biomarkers can serve as a meaningful and accessible data for osteoporosis diagnosis.

Methods: The present study systematically elucidated the anti-osteoporosis and estrogenic activities of TPEE in ovariectomized (OVX) rats by evaluating the bone microstructure, uterus index, serum and bone biomarkers, and osteoblastic and osteoclastic gene expression. Leverage on a pool of serum biomarkers obtained from this study, recursive feature elimination with a cross-validation method (RFECV) was used to select useful biomarkers for osteoporosis prediction. Then, using the key features extracted, we employed five classification algorithms: extreme gradient boosting (XGBoost), random forest, support vector machine, artificial neural network, and decision tree to predict the bone quality in terms of T-score.

Results: TPEE treatments down-regulated nuclear factor kappa-B ligand, alkaline phosphatase, and up-regulated estrogen receptor β gene expression. Additionally, reduced serum C-terminal telopeptides of type 1 collagen level and improvement in the estrogen dependent characteristics of the uterus on the lining of the lumen were observed in the TPEE intervention group. Among the tested classifiers, XGBoost stood out as the best performing classification model with the highest F1-score and lowest standard deviation.

Conclusions: The present study demonstrates that TPEE treatment showed therapeutic benefits in the prevention of osteoporosis at the transcriptional level and maintained the estrogen dependent characteristics of the uterus. Our study revealed that, in the case of limited number of features, RFECV paired with XGBoost model could serve as a powerful tool to readily evaluate and diagnose postmenopausal osteoporosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13020-022-00622-7DOI Listing
June 2022

4-phenylpyridine suppresses UVB-induced skin inflammation by targeting c-Src in vitro and in vivo.

J Cell Mol Med 2022 Jun 10. Epub 2022 Jun 10.

School of Food Science and Biotechnology, Kyungpook National University, Daegu, Korea.

Acute or repetitive exposure to ultraviolet (UV) cause disruptions to the skin barrier and subsequent inflammatory skin disease. 4-phenylpyridine (4-PP) is a constituent of Brassica campestris L. ssp. Pekinensis and its effect on skin inflammation and molecular target remain unclear. The purpose of this study is to confirm the anti-inflammatory efficacy of 4-PP on UVB-induced skin inflammation in human keratinocytes HaCaT and mouse skin and validation of its molecular target. 4-PP also attenuated UVB-induced phosphorylation of p38/mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase (MKK) 3/6, c-Jun N-terminal kinase 1/2, MKK 4/7, extracellular-signal-regulated kinase 1/2, mitogen-activated protein kinase 1/2. Additionally, 4-PP inhibited UVB-induced phosphorylation of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) Y1068, Y1045 and 854 residues but not the proto-oncogene tyrosine-protein kinase c-Src. Drug affinity responsive target stability assay revealed that 4-PP directly binds to c-Src and inhibits pronase c-proteolysis. Knockdown of c-Src inhibited UVB-induced COX-2 expression and phosphorylation of MAPKs and EGFR in HaCaT cells. Dorsal treatment of 4-PP prevented UVB (0.5 J/cm )-induced skin thickness, phosphorylation of EGFR and COX-2 expression in mouse skin. Our findings suggest that 4-PP can be used as anti-inflammatory agent with an effect of skin inflammation by inhibiting the COX-2 expression via suppressing the c-Src/EGFR/MAPKs signalling pathway.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jcmm.17422DOI Listing
June 2022

Evening Primrose Extracts Inhibit PDGF-BB-Induced Vascular Smooth Muscle Cell Proliferation and Migration by Regulating Cell-Cycle-Related Proteins.

Curr Issues Mol Biol 2022 Apr 27;44(5):1928-1940. Epub 2022 Apr 27.

Division of Biological Science and Technology, Yonsei University, Wonju 26493, Korea.

The proliferation and migration of vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) are important factors in the occurrence of cardiovascular diseases, such as blood flow abnormalities, stroke and atherosclerosis. Evening primrose, known as , is a plant native to Korea that exerts physiological activities, such as antioxidant effects, the inhibition of lipid accumulation and the prevention of muscle atrophy. However, the function of evening primrose stem (EVP) in the regulation of VSMC proliferation and migration and the underlying mechanisms have not been identified. In this study, the effect of EVP on the platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)-induced proliferation and migration of VSMCs was investigated. The results show that PDGF-BB-induced proliferation of VSMCs was inhibited by EVP at concentrations of 25, 50 or 100 μg/mL in a concentration-dependent manner, and a migration assay showed that EVP inhibited cell migration. Cell cycle analysis was performed to confirm the mechanism by which cell proliferation and migration was inhibited. The results indicate that proteins involved in the cell cycle, such as cyclin, CDK and phosphorylated Rb, were downregulated by EVP at concentrations of 100 μg/mL, thereby increasing the proportion of cells in the G0/G1 phase and inhibiting cell cycle progression. In the PDGF receptor (PDGFR) signaling pathway, phosphorylation of the PDGFR was inhibited by EVP at concentrations of 100 μg/mL, and PLCγ phosphorylation was also decreased. The PDGF-BB-induced effect of EVP on the proliferation of VSMCs involved the inhibition of Akt phosphorylation and the reduction in the phosphorylation of MAPK proteins such as ERK, P38 and JNK. In conclusion, the results demonstrate that EVP inhibited PDGF-BB-induced VSMC proliferation and migration by regulating cell-cycle-related proteins.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cimb44050131DOI Listing
April 2022

Worsening or improving hypoalbuminemia during continuous renal replacement therapy is predictive of patient outcome: a single-center retrospective study.

J Intensive Care 2022 Jun 7;10(1):25. Epub 2022 Jun 7.

Department of Internal Medicine, Pusan National University Yangsan Hospital, Yangsan, Republic of Korea.

Background: Hypoalbuminemia at the initiation of continuous renal replacement therapy (CRRT) is a risk factor for poor patient outcomes. However, it is unknown whether the patterns of changes in serum albumin levels during CRRT can be used to predict patient outcomes.

Methods: This retrospective study analyzed data that had been consecutively collected from January 2016 to December 2020 at the Third Affiliated Hospital. We included patients with acute kidney injury who received CRRT for ≥ 72 h. We divided the patients into four groups based on their serum albumin levels (albumin ≥ 3.0 g/dL or < 3.0 g/dL) at the initiation and termination of CRRT.

Results: The 793 patients in this study were categorized into the following albumin groups: persistently low, 299 patients (37.7%); increasing, 85 patients (10.4%); decreasing, 195 patients (24.6%); and persistently high, 214 patients (27.1%). In-hospital mortality rates were highest in the persistently low and decreasing groups, followed by the increasing and persistently high groups. The hazard ratio for in-hospital mortality was 0.481 (0.340-0.680) in the increasing group compared to the persistently low group; it was 1.911 (1.394-2.620) in the decreasing group compared to the persistently high group. The length of ICU stay was 3.55 days longer in the persistently low group than in the persistently high group.

Conclusions: Serum albumin levels changed during CRRT, and monitoring of patterns of change in serum albumin levels is useful for predicting in-hospital mortality and the length of ICU stay.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s40560-022-00620-9DOI Listing
June 2022

Response to Nivolumab and Ipilimumab in Microsatellite Instability-High (MSI-H) Cervical Carcinoma with Acquired Resistance to Pembrolizumab: A Case Report and Literature Review.

Oncologist 2022 May 28. Epub 2022 May 28.

Department of Hematology and Oncology, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL, USA.

As the use of immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) in treating a variety of cancer types has increased in recent years, so too have the number of reports on patients acquiring resistance to these therapies. Overcoming acquired resistance to immunotherapy remains an important need in the field of immuno-oncology. Herein, we present a case that suggests sequential administration of combination immunotherapy may be beneficial to advanced cervical cancer patients exhibiting acquired resistance to mono-immunotherapy. The patient's tumor is microsatellite instability-high (MSI-H), which is an important biomarker in predicting ICI response. Results from recent interim prospective studies using combination immunotherapy (eg, nivolumab and ipilimumab) with anti-PD-1 plus anti-CTLA-4 inhibitor following progression on anti-PD-1 inhibitors (eg, nivolumab) have shown anti-tumor activity in patients with advanced melanoma and metastatic urothelial carcinoma. We also introduce retrospective studies and case reports/case series of dual checkpoint inhibition with anti-PD-1 inhibitor plus anti-CTLA-4 inhibitor after progression on prior anti-PD/PD-L1 monotherapy. To date, there has been no prospective study on the use of combined anti-PD-1 and anti-CTLA-4 therapy at the time of progression on anti-PD-1 therapy in patients with MSI-H tumors or advanced cervical cancer. In this report, we provide evidence that supports future investigations into such treatments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oncolo/oyac095DOI Listing
May 2022

MicroRNAs as potential indicators of the development and progression of uterine leiomyoma.

PLoS One 2022 31;17(5):e0268793. Epub 2022 May 31.

Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Buheon St. Mary's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Republic of Korea.

Recent studies demonstrated a significant role of several microRNAs (miRs) in the development of leiomyoma. Here, we investigated miR expression profiles using microarray and found a significantly higher expression of miRs in leiomyoma than in adjacent myometrium. We also confirmed the upregulation of five selected miRs including miR-181a-5p, 127-3p, 28-3p, 30b-5p and let-7c-5p in cellular proliferation, extracellular matrix turnover, and angiogenesis by RT-qPCR. Interestingly, the miRs showed a higher expression in cases of large leiomyoma or in patients with a history of transfusion due to anemia. We then analyzed the expression of the miR target molecules including Transforming Growth Factor Beta Receptor 2 (TGFBR2) and Insulin-like Growth Factor 2 mRNA Binding Protein 1 (IGF2BP1) via immunohistochemistry. TGFBR2 and IGF2BP1 were positively stained in 81% and 62.5% of leiomyoma tissues but not in adjacent myometrium. Both were more frequently positive in patients with ≥ 6 cm leiomyoma and mass effect. The mean expression levels of miR-181a-5p, 127-3p, 28-3p, 30b-5p and let-7c-5p were higher in cases with TGFBR2 and IGF2BP1 positive leiomyoma. We observed several miRs were overexpressed in leiomyoma tissues, and these results provide insight into the role of miRs in the development and progression of leiomyoma and underscore the need to validate their utility as diagnostic or therapeutic targets.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0268793PLOS
June 2022

Recurrence of IgA nephropathy after kidney transplantation: experience from the Swiss transplant cohort study.

BMC Nephrol 2022 05 10;23(1):178. Epub 2022 May 10.

Division of Nephrology, Cantonal Hospital Aarau, Aarau, Switzerland.

Background: Recurrence of IgA nephropathy (IgAN) after kidney transplantation occurs in about 30% of patients. The relevance of recurrence for the long-term graft survival is expected to increase, since graft survival continues to improve.

Methods: In a nested study within the Swiss Transplant Cohort Study the incidence of IgAN recurrence, predictive factors, graft function and graft and patient survival were evaluated. Serum concentration of total IgA, total IgG, Gd-IgA1 and IgA-IgG immune complex were measured using ELISA-based immunologic assays.

Results: Between May 2008 and December 2016, 28 women and 133 men received their kidney allograft for end-stage kidney disease due to IgAN in Switzerland. Over a median follow-up time of 7 years after transplantation, 43 out of 161 patients (26.7%) developed an IgAN recurrence, of which six (13.9%) had an allograft failure afterwards and further four patients (9.3%) died. During the same follow-up period, 6 out of 118 patients (5%) each experienced allograft failure or died without prior IgAN recurrence. After 11 years the risk for IgAN recurrence was 27.7% (95%-CI: 20.6-35.3%). Renal function was similar in patients with and without recurrence up to 7 years after transplantation, but worsened thereafter in patients with recurrence (eGFR median (interquartile range) at 8 years: 49 ml/min/1.73m (29-68) vs. 60 ml/min/1.73m (38-78)). Serum concentration of total IgA, total IgG, Gd-IgA1 and IgA-IgG immune complex within the first year posttransplant showed no significant effect on the recurrence of IgAN. Younger recipients and women had a higher risk of recurrence, but the latter only in the short term.

Conclusions: Our study showed a recurrence risk of 28% at 11 years after transplantation, which is consistent with previous literature. However, the predictive value of known biomarkers, such as serum Gd-IgA1 and IgA-IgG IC, for IgAN recurrence could not be confirmed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12882-022-02802-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9088042PMC
May 2022

The trend in cesarean myomectomies and the risk of obstetrical complications in Korea.

BMC Pregnancy Childbirth 2022 May 3;22(1):387. Epub 2022 May 3.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, College of Medicine, Seoul St. Mary's Hospital, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Republic of Korea.

Background: To evaluate pregnancy outcomes and the risk of adverse obstetrical outcomes of cesarean myomectomy (CM) compared with cesarean section (CS) only, and to investigate the trend of surgeons in choosing CM.

Methods: A retrospective cohort study was performed on all patients who underwent CS complicated by leiomyoma at two university hospitals between January 2010 and May 2020. All patients were categorized into the CM (341 women) or CS-only (438 women) group. We analyzed the demographic factors, obstetric factors, surgical outcomes, and possible risk factors for adverse outcomes between the two groups.

Results: Women who underwent CS only were significantly more likely to have a previous myomectomy and multiple leiomyoma history than women who underwent CM. The gestational age at delivery and pregnancy complications were significantly higher in the CS-only group. The mean size of the leiomyomas was larger in the CM group than in the CS-only group (5.8 ± 3.2 cm vs. 5.2 ± 3.1 cm, P = 0.005). The operation time and history of previous CS and preterm labor were higher in the CM group. The leiomyoma types differed between the two groups. The subserosal type was the most common in the CM group (48.7%), and the intramural type was the most common in the CS-only group. Patients in the CM group had fewer than three leiomyomas than those in the CS-only group. Preterm labor and abnormal presentation were relatively higher in the CM group than in the CS-only group, concerning leiomyoma presence. There were no significant differences in the preoperative and postoperative hemoglobin levels. The size of the leiomyoma (odds ratio [OR] = 1.162; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.07-1.25; P < 0.001) and operation time > 60 min (OR = 2.461; 95% CI: 1.45-4.15) were significant independent predictors of adverse outcomes after CM.

Conclusions: CM should be considered a reliable and safe approach to prevent the need for another surgery for remnant leiomyoma. Herein, surgeons performed CM when uterine leiomyomas were large, of the subserosal type, or few. Standardized treatment guidelines for myomectomy during CSs in pregnant women with uterine fibroids should be established.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12884-022-04674-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9066846PMC
May 2022

Specific Detection of Acanthamoeba species using Polyclonal Peptide Antibody Targeting the Periplasmic Binding Protein of A. castellanii.

Korean J Parasitol 2022 Apr 20;60(2):143-147. Epub 2022 Apr 20.

Department of Medical Zoology, Kyung Hee University School of Medicine, Seoul 02447, Korea.

Acanthamoeba keratitis (AK) is a rare ocular disease, but it is a painful and sight-threatening infectious disease. Early diagnosis and adequate treatment are necessary to prevent serious complications. While AK is frequently diagnosis via several PCR assays or Acanthamoeba-specific antibodies, a more specific and effective diagnostic method is required. This study described the production of a polyclonal peptide antibody against the periplasmic binding protein (PBP) of A. castellanii and investigated its diagnostic potential. Western blot analysis showed that the PBP antibody specifically reacted with the cell lysates of A. castellanii. However, the PBP antibody did not interact with human corneal epithelial (HCE) cells and the other 3 major causative agents of keratitis. Immunocytochemistry (ICC) results revealed the specific detection of A. castellanii trophozoites and cysts by PBP antibodies when A. castellanii were co-cultured with HCE cells. PBP antibody specificity was further confirmed by co-culture of A. castellanii trophozoites with F. solani, S. aureus, and P. aeruginosa via ICC. The PBP antibody specifically reacted with the trophozoites and cysts of A. polyphaga, A. hatchetti, A. culbertsoni, A. royreba, and A. healyi, thus demonstrated its genus-specific nature. These results showed that the PBP polyclonal peptide antibody of A. castellanii could specifically detect several species of Acanthamoeba, contributing to the development of an effective antibody-based AK diagnostics.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3347/kjp.2022.60.2.143DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9058276PMC
April 2022

Hospice-Palliative Medicine as a Model of Value-Based Healthcare.

J Korean Med Sci 2022 04 18;37(15):e111. Epub 2022 Apr 18.

Patient-Centered Clinical Research Coordinating Center, National Evidence-Based Healthcare Collaborating Agency, Seoul, Korea.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.3346/jkms.2022.37.e111DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9015901PMC
April 2022

Reduced HIF-1α Stability Induced by 6-Gingerol Inhibits Lung Cancer Growth through the Induction of Cell Death.

Molecules 2022 Mar 24;27(7). Epub 2022 Mar 24.

Department of Science in Korean Medicine, Graduate School, Kyung Hee University, 26 Kyungheedae Rd., Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul 02447, Korea.

Lung cancer (LC) is the leading global cause of cancer-related death, and metastasis is a great challenge in LC therapy. Additionally, solid cancer, including lung, prostate, and colon cancer, are characterized by hypoxia. A low-oxygen state is facilitated by the oncogene pathway, which correlates with a poor cancer prognosis. Thus, we need to understand the related mechanisms in solid tumors to improve and develop new anticancer strategies. The experiments herein describe an anticancer mechanism in which heat shock protein 90 (HSP90) stabilizes HIF-1α, a master transcription factor of oxygen homeostasis that has been implicated in the survival, proliferation and malignant progression of cancers. We demonstrate the efficacy of 6-gingerol and the molecular mechanism by which 6-gingerol inhibits LC metastasis in different oxygen environments. Our results showed that cell proliferation was inhibited after 6-gingerol treatment. Additionally, HIF-1α, a transcriptional regulator, was found to be recruited to the hypoxia response element (HRE) of target genes to induce the transcription of a series of target genes, including MMP-9, vimentin and snail. Interestingly, we found that 6-gingerol treatment suppressed activation of the transcription factor HIF-1α by downregulating HSP90 under both normoxic and hypoxic conditions. Furthermore, an experiment in an in vivo xenograft model revealed decreased tumor growth after 6-gingerol treatment. Both in vitro and in vivo analyses showed the inhibition of metastasis through HIF-1α/HSP90 after 6-gingerol treatment. In summary, our study demonstrates that 6-gingerol suppresses proliferation and blocks the nuclear translocation of HIF-1α and activation of the EMT pathway. These data suggest that 6-gingerol is a candidate antimetastatic treatment for LC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/molecules27072106DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9000891PMC
March 2022

Role of mass spectrometry-based serum proteomics signatures in predicting clinical outcomes and toxicity in patients with cancer treated with immunotherapy.

J Immunother Cancer 2022 Mar;10(3)

Department of Hematology and Oncology, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois, USA

Immunotherapy has fundamentally changed the landscape of cancer treatment. However, only a subset of patients respond to immunotherapy, and a significant portion experience immune-related adverse events (irAEs). In addition, the predictive ability of current biomarkers such as programmed death-ligand 1 (PD-L1) remains unreliable and establishing better potential candidate markers is of great importance in selecting patients who would benefit from immunotherapy. Here, we focus on the role of serum-based proteomic tests in predicting the response and toxicity of immunotherapy. Serum proteomic signatures refer to unique patterns of proteins which are associated with immune response in patients with cancer. These protein signatures are derived from patient serum samples based on mass spectrometry and act as biomarkers to predict response to immunotherapy. Using machine learning algorithms, serum proteomic tests were developed through training data sets from advanced non-small cell lung cancer (Host Immune Classifier, Primary Immune Response) and malignant melanoma patients (PerspectIV test). The tests effectively stratified patients into groups with good and poor treatment outcomes independent of PD-L1 expression. Here, we review current evidence in the published literature on three liquid biopsy tests that use biomarkers derived from proteomics and machine learning for use in immuno-oncology. We discuss how these tests may inform patient prognosis as well as guide treatment decisions and predict irAE of immunotherapy. Thus, mass spectrometry-based serum proteomics signatures play an important role in predicting clinical outcomes and toxicity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jitc-2021-003566DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8961104PMC
March 2022

Protective effects of Aster yomena (Kitam.) Honda from cognitive dysfunction induced by high-fat diet.

J Food Biochem 2022 Mar 23:e14138. Epub 2022 Mar 23.

Department of Food Science, Gyeongsang National University, Jinju, Republic of Korea.

In our study, we investigated whether Aster yomena (Kitam.) Honda (AY) improved cognitive impairment which results from consumption of high-fat diet (HFD). When ethyl acetate fraction from AY (EFAY) was administered to C57BL/6J mice fed with 60% HFD, EFAY significantly enhanced cognitive ability that was impaired by HFD in T-maze test and novel object recognition test. Furthermore, EFAY increased memory and learning functions that were proven during Morris water maze test. We further elucidated protective mechanisms of EFAY against cognitive decline that resulted from obesity by western blotting. In the brain, HFD increased neuronal inflammation and disturbed insulin receptor substrate-1 (IRS-1)/Akt pathway. However, EFAY significantly downregulated inflammation-related protein expressions such as nuclear factor-κB interleukin-1β, inducible nitric oxide synthase and cyclooxygenase-2, compared with the HFD-fed control group. Furthermore, the IRS-1/Akt pathway was regulated by EFAY, indicating that EFAY ameliorated insulin resistance in the brain. PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS: Obesity and its complications increase the risk for developing cognitive dysfunction such as dementia. Administration of ethyl acetate fraction from AY (EFAY)-attenuated cognitive and memory impairment by inhibitions of neuronal oxidative stress and low-grade chronic inflammation in high-fat diet (HFD)-induced cognitive impairment mouse model. In addition, EFAY-administered mice disturbed cerebral insulin receptor substrate-1 (IRS-1)/Akt pathway. These data suggest that EFAY-improved cognitive impairment induced by HFD through modulation of insulin resistance and inflammation. Therefore, we proposed that AY could be a potential agent to prevent cognitive dysfunction induced by obesity and insulin resistance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jfbc.14138DOI Listing
March 2022

Clinical Significance of Composition and Functional Diversity of the Vaginal Microbiome in Recurrent Vaginitis.

Front Microbiol 2022 18;13:851670. Epub 2022 Feb 18.

Department of Laboratory Medicine, Seoul St. Mary's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, South Korea.

Objective: The vaginal microbiome protects the female genital tract from various diseases, such as vaginitis, a vaginal inflammation characterized by abnormal discharge, itching, and pain. To evaluate the clinical relationship between the vaginal microbiome and the pathophysiology of recurrent vaginitis (RV), we investigated the microbiome taxonomic profile (MTP) in the vaginal samples of Korean female patients with RV.

Methods: Forty women of reproductive age diagnosed with RV were enrolled. The vaginal MTP of patients was analyzed using 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequencing, and the results were compared with that of healthy women ( = 100). Further, the association of the vaginal community state type (CST) with the clinical characteristics was analyzed.

Results: The species abundance of MTP was significantly lower in patients with RV than in healthy women ( < 0.05), whereas species evenness and diversity were significantly higher in patients with RV than in healthy individuals ( < 0.05). The proportion of the most common vaginal spp. was significantly lower in the MTP of patients with RV than healthy women ( < 0.01). The beta diversity distance was also significantly different between patients with RV patients and healthy individuals ( = 0.001). Based on the CST, the MTP of 40 RV samples was categorized as follows: 21 (52.5%) for CST IV, 8 (20.0%) for CST III, 5 (12.5%) for CST I, 2 (5.0%) for CST II, 1 for (2.5%) for CST V, and 3 (7.5%) for mixed CST. Patients with underlying uterine diseases (uterine leiomyoma, adenomyosis, and endometrial polyps;  = 17) showed higher species richness and diversity than those without ( = 23;  < 0.05).

Conclusion: Changes in the species abundance and microbial diversity in the vagina were strongly associated with RV. A low proportion of spp. was found in patients with RV than in healthy women. The abundance and diversity of bacterial taxa were significantly higher in patients with underlying gynecologic disease than those without. Our study offers an insight into the nature of the vaginal microbiome and proposes that surveying the vaginal microbiome is valuable for detecting and treating gynecologic diseases in the future.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmicb.2022.851670DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8895140PMC
February 2022

Characterization of a Peptide Antibody Specific to the Adenylyl Cyclase-Associated Protein of Acanthamoeba castellanii.

Korean J Parasitol 2022 Feb 23;60(1):7-14. Epub 2022 Feb 23.

Department of Biomedical Science, Graduate School, Kyung Hee University, Seoul 02447, Korea.

Acanthamoeba keratitis (AK) is a rare infectious disease and accurate diagnosis has remained arduous as clinical manifestations of AK were similar to keratitis of viral, bacterial, or fungal origins. In this study, we described the production of a polyclonal peptide antibody against the adenylyl cyclase-associated protein (ACAP) of A. castellanii, and evaluated its differential diagnostic potential. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay revealed high titers of A. castellanii-specific IgG and IgA antibodies being present in low dilutions of immunized rabbit serum. Western blot analysis revealed that the ACAP antibody specifically interacted with A. castellanii, while not interacting with human corneal epithelial (HCE) cells and other causes of keratitis such as Fusarium solani, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Staphylococcus aureus. Immunocytochemistry (ICC) results confirmed the specific detection of trophozoites and cysts of A. castellanii co-cultured with HCE cells. The ACAP antibody also specifically interacted with the trophozoites and cysts of 5 other Acanthamoeba species. These results indicate that the ACAP antibody of A. castellanii can specifically detect multiple AK-causing members belonging to the genus Acanthamoeba and may be useful for differentially diagnosing Acanthamoeba infections.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3347/kjp.2022.60.1.7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8898646PMC
February 2022

Discovery of Kinase and Carbonic Anhydrase Dual Inhibitors by Machine Learning Classification and Experiments.

Pharmaceuticals (Basel) 2022 Feb 16;15(2). Epub 2022 Feb 16.

Research Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy, Kyungpook National University, 80 Daehak-ro, Buk-gu, Daegu 41566, Korea.

A multi-target small molecule modulator is advantageous for treating complicated diseases such as cancers. However, the strategy and application for discovering a multi-target modulator have been less reported. This study presents the dual inhibitors for kinase and carbonic anhydrase (CA) predicted by machine learning (ML) classifiers, and validated by biochemical and biophysical experiments. ML trained by CA I and CA II inhibitor molecular fingerprints predicted candidates from the protein-specific bioactive molecules approved or under clinical trials. For experimental tests, three sulfonamide-containing kinase inhibitors, , , and , were chosen. The enzyme assays with CA I, CA II, CA IX, and CA XII have allowed the quantitative comparison in the molecules' inhibitory activities. While inhibited weakly, and exhibited potent inhibitions with 100 nM to 1 μM inhibitory constants. The ML screening was extended for finding CAs inhibitors of all known kinase inhibitors. It found XMU-MP-1 as another potent CA inhibitor with an approximate 30 nM inhibitory constant for CA I, CA II, and CA IX. Differential scanning fluorimetry confirmed the direct interaction between CAs and small molecules. Cheminformatics studies, including docking simulation, suggest that each molecule possesses two separate functional moieties: one for interaction with kinases and the other with CAs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ph15020236DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8875555PMC
February 2022

Dulaglutide Ameliorates Palmitic Acid-Induced Hepatic Steatosis by Activating FAM3A Signaling Pathway.

Endocrinol Metab (Seoul) 2022 Feb 9;37(1):74-83. Epub 2022 Feb 9.

Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Internal Medicine, Kangbuk Samsung Hospital, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.

Background: Dulaglutide, a long-acting glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist (GLP-1RA), has been shown to reduce body weight and liver fat content in patients with type 2 diabetes. Family with sequence similarity 3 member A (FAM3A) plays a vital role in regulating glucose and lipid metabolism. The aim of this study was to determine the mechanisms by which dulaglutide protects against hepatic steatosis in HepG2 cells treated with palmitic acid (PA).

Methods: HepG2 cells were pretreated with 400 μM PA for 24 hours, followed by treatment with or without 100 nM dulaglutide for 24 hours. Hepatic lipid accumulation was determined using Oil red O staining and triglyceride (TG) assay, and the expression of lipid metabolism-associated factor was analyzed using quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction and Western blotting.

Results: Dulaglutide significantly decreased hepatic lipid accumulation and reduced the expression of genes associated with lipid droplet binding proteins, de novo lipogenesis, and TG synthesis in PA-treated HepG2 cells. Dulaglutide also increased the expression of proteins associated with lipolysis and fatty acid oxidation and FAM3A in PA-treated cells. However, exendin-(9-39), a GLP-1R antagonist, reversed the expression of FAM3A, and fatty acid oxidation-associated factors increased due to dulaglutide. In addition, inhibition of FAM3A by siRNA attenuated the reducing effect of dulaglutide on TG content and its increasing effect on regulation of fatty acid oxidation.

Conclusion: These results suggest that dulaglutide could be used therapeutically for improving nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, and its effect could be mediated in part via upregulation of FAM3A expression through a GLP-1R-dependent pathway.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3803/EnM.2021.1293DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8901965PMC
February 2022

The protective effects of (Kitam.) Honda on high-fat diet-induced obese C57BL/6J mice.

Nutr Res Pract 2022 Feb 3;16(1):46-59. Epub 2022 Jan 3.

Department of Food Science, Gyeongsang National University, Jinju 52725, Korea.

Background/objectives: (Kitam.) Honda (AY) has remarkable bioactivities, such as antioxidant, anti-inflammation, and anti-cancer activities. On the other hand, the effects of AY against obesity-induced insulin resistance have not been reported. Therefore, this study examined the potential of AY against obesity-associated insulin resistance in high-fat diet (HFD)-fed mice.

Materials/methods: An obesity model was established by feeding C57BL/6J mice a 60% HFD for 16 weeks. The C57BL6/When ethyl acetate fraction from AY (EFAY) at doses of 100 and 200 mg/kg/day was administered orally to mice fed a HFD for the last 4 weeks. Normal and control groups were administered water orally. The body weight and fasting blood glucose were measured every week. Dietary intake was measured every other day. After dissection, blood and tissues were collected from the mice.

Results: The administration of EFAY reduced body and organ weights significantly compared to HFD-fed control mice. The EFAY-administered groups also improved the serum lipid profile by decreasing the triglyceride, total cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein compared to the control group. In addition, EFAY ameliorated the insulin resistance-related metabolic dysfunctions, including the fasting blood glucose and serum insulin level, compared to the HFD-fed control mice. The EFAY inhibited lipid synthesis and insulin resistance by down-regulation of hepatic fatty acid synthase and up-regulation of the AMP-activated protein kinase pathway. EFAY also reduced lipid peroxidation in the liver, indicating that EFAY protected hepatic injury induced by obesity.

Conclusions: These results suggest that EFAY improved obesity-associated insulin resistance by regulating the lipid and glucose metabolism, suggesting that AY could be used as a functional food to prevent obesity and insulin resistance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4162/nrp.2022.16.1.46DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8784267PMC
February 2022

Anti-Amnesic Effects of Epigallocatechin Gallate on Scopolamine-Induced Learning and Memory Dysfunction in Sprague-Dawley Rats.

Antioxidants (Basel) 2021 Dec 21;11(1). Epub 2021 Dec 21.

Department of Food Science and Biotechnology, Kyung Hee University, Yongin 17104, Korea.

Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is a major flavan-3-ol of green tea polyphenols that exhibits various beneficial health effects, including antioxidant, anti-bacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties. This study aimed to evaluate whether EGCG prevents scopolamine-induced learning and memory impairment in and models. Male Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats were pre-treated with EGCG (5 mg/kg/day; intraperitoneal injection (i.p.)) for 10 days. Then, EGCG and scopolamine (1 mg/kg/day; i.p.) were applied 60 and 30 min before the behavioral tests, respectively, for another 9 days. EGCG alleviated the cognitive deficits in the Y-maze, passive avoidance, and Morris water maze tests. EGCG showed improved cholinergic functions by decreasing acetylcholinesterase activity in hippocampi dissected from the brain of the rats after the behavioral tests. EGCG also reduced oxidative stress, partly due to increased superoxide dismutase activity and decreased malondialdehyde level in the hippocampi of the rat brains after the behavioral tests. Furthermore, EGCG attenuated the scopolamine-induced blockade of long-term potentiation in organotypic hippocampal tissue of seven-day-old SD rats. Taken together, these results suggested that EGCG is a potential therapeutic agent for alleviating cognitive dysfunction.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/antiox11010001DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8773269PMC
December 2021

1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D deficiency is independently associated with cardiac valve calcification in patients with chronic kidney disease.

Sci Rep 2022 01 18;12(1):915. Epub 2022 Jan 18.

Department of Internal Medicine, Pusan National University School of Medicine, Yangsan, South Korea.

Cardiac valve calcification is highly prevalent in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). Low vitamin D levels are associated with vascular calcification in CKD. However, the association between vitamin D levels and cardiac valve calcification is unknown. A total of 513 patients with pre-dialysis CKD were included in this cross-sectional study. Aortic valve calcification (AVC) and mitral valve calcification (MVC) were assessed using two-dimensional echocardiography. The associations between AVC and MVC and baseline variables were investigated using logistic regression analyses. In multivariable analysis, serum 1,25(OH)D level was independently associated with AVC (odds ratio [OR], 0.87; P < 0.001) and MVC (OR, 0.92; P < 0.001). Additionally, age, diabetes, coronary heart disease, calcium × phosphate product, and intact parathyroid hormone levels were independently associated with AVC and MVC. Systolic blood pressure was independently associated with AVC. A receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis showed that the best cutoff values of serum 1,25(OH)D levels for predicting AVC and MVC were ≤ 12.5 and ≤ 11.9 pg/dl, respectively. Serum 1,25(OH)D deficiency is independently associated with AVC and MVC in patients with CKD, suggesting that serum 1,25(OH)D level may be a potential biomarker of AVC and MVC in these patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-022-04981-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8766529PMC
January 2022

Antiproliferation and Antiencystation Effect of Class II Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors on .

ACS Infect Dis 2022 02 7;8(2):271-279. Epub 2022 Jan 7.

Medical Research Center for Bioreaction to Reactive Oxygen Species and Biomedical Science Institute, School of Medicine, Kyung Hee University, 02447 Seoul, South Korea.

is a ubiquitous and free-living protozoan pathogen responsible for causing keratitis (AK), a severe corneal infection inflicting immense pain that can result in permanent blindness. A drug-based treatment of AK has remained arduous because trophozoites undergo encystment to become highly drug-resistant cysts upon exposure to harsh environmental conditions such as amoebicidal agents (e.g., polyhexanide, chloroquine, and chlorohexidine). As such, drugs that block the encystation process could result in a successful AK treatment. Histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACi) have recently emerged as novel therapeutic options for treating various protozoan and parasitic diseases. Here, we investigated whether novel HDACi suppress the proliferation and encystation of . Synthetic class II HDACi FFK29 (IIa selective) and MPK576 (IIb selective) dose-dependently decreased the viability of trophozoites. While these HDACi demonstrated a negligible effect on the viability of mature cysts, encystation was significantly inhibited by these HDACi. Apoptosis was slightly increased in trophozoites after a treatment with these HDACi, whereas cysts were unaffected by the HDACi exposure. The viability of human corneal cells was not affected by HDACi concentrations up to 10 μmol/L. In conclusion, these synthetic HDACi demonstrated potent amoebicidal effects and inhibited the growth and encystation of , thus highlighting their enormous potential for further development.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsinfecdis.1c00390DOI Listing
February 2022

Vitamin D and the Immune System in Menopause: A Review.

J Menopausal Med 2021 Dec;27(3):109-114

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Korea.

Menopause is a normal phenomenon in a woman's life cycle involving multiple health-related issues that contribute to physical instability. Changes in the immune system in postmenopausal women are caused by estrogen deprivation along with age. Increased proinflammatory serum marker levels, cytokine responses in body cells, decreased CD4 T and B lymphocyte levels, and natural killer cell cytotoxic activity are also observed during postmenopause. Moreover, vitamin D, in addition to its classical effects on calcium homeostasis and bone density, plays an important role. Current evidence indicates that vitamin D regulates innate and adaptive immune responses; however, vitamin D deficiency is linked to increased autoimmune activity and infection susceptibility. This review provides an overview of the consequences of immune alterations as an outcome of aging in postmenopausal women and the benefit of vitamin D supplementation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.6118/jmm.21011DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8738846PMC
December 2021

Detection of Acanthamoeba spp. using carboxylesterase antibody and its usage for diagnosing Acanthamoeba-keratitis.

PLoS One 2022 5;17(1):e0262223. Epub 2022 Jan 5.

Department of Medical Zoology, Kyung Hee University School of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.

Contact lens usage has contributed to increased incidence rates of Acanthamoeba keratitis (AK), a serious corneal infection that can lead to blindness. Since symptoms associated with AK closely resemble those incurred by bacterial or fungal keratitis, developing a diagnostic method enabling rapid detection with a high degree of Acanthamoeba-specificity would be beneficial. Here, we produced a polyclonal antibody targeting the carboxylesterase (CE) superfamily protein secreted by the pathogenic Acanthamoeba and evaluated its diagnostic potential. Western blot analysis revealed that the CE antibody specifically interacts with the cell lysates and conditioned media of pathogenic Acanthamoeba, which were not observed from the cell lysates and conditioned media of human corneal epithelial (HCE) cells, Fusarium solani, Staphylococcus aureus, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. High titers of A. castellanii-specific antibody production were confirmed sera of immunized mice via ELISA, and these antibodies were capable of detecting A. castellanii from the cell lysates and their conditioned media. The specificity of the CE antibody was further confirmed on A. castellanii trophozoites and cysts co-cultured with HCE cells, F. solani, S. aureus, and P. aeruginosa using immunocytochemistry. Additionally, the CE antibody produced in this study successfully interacted with 7 different Acanthamoeba species. Our findings demonstrate that the polyclonal CE antibody specifically detects multiple species belong to the genus Acanthamoeba, thus highlighting its potential as AK diagnostic tool.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0262223PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8730387PMC
February 2022

Trifolium pratense ethanolic extract alters the gut microbiota composition and regulates serum lipid profile in the ovariectomized rats.

BMC Complement Med Ther 2022 Jan 4;22(1). Epub 2022 Jan 4.

College of Veterinary Medicine, Kyungpook National University, 80 Daehak-ro, Daegu, 41566, Republic of Korea.

Background: Trifolium pratense (red clover) ethanolic extract (TPEE) has been used as a popular over-the-counter remedy for the management of menopausal symptoms. Prolonged consumption of herbal extract has been shown to regulate the composition of gut microbiota. This study was designed to elucidate the influence of TPEE on the gut microbiota composition in the ovariectomized (OVX) rats.

Methods: OVX rats were treated with TPEE at 125, 250, 500 mg/kg/day, or controls (pomegranate extract, 500 mg/kg/day; estradiol, 25 μg/kg/day) for 12 weeks. Gut microbiota analysis was conducted by extracting the microbial DNA from fecal samples and microbiome taxonomic profiling was carried out by using next-generation sequencing. The levels of serum biomarkers were analyzed using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) kit. The prediction of functional biomarker of microbiota was performed using PICRUSt to investigate the potential pathways associated with gut health and serum lipid profile regulation. To study the correlation between gut microbiota composition and serum lipid levels, Spearman's correlation coefficients were defined and analyzed. Additionally, gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis was conducted to uncover additional physiologically active ingredients.

Results: TPEE-treated OVX rats showed significant reduction in serum triglycerides (TG), total cholesterols (TCHOL), and LDL/VLDL levels but increase in HDL level. The alteration in the pathways involve in metabolism was the most common among the other KEGG categories. Particularly, TPEE also significantly reduced the relative abundance of sequences read associated with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) signalling pathway. TPEE intervention was seen to reduce the Firmicutes to Bacteroidetes (F/B) ratio in the OVX rats, denoting a reduction in microbial dysbiosis in the OVX rats. Correlation analysis at the phylum level revealed that Bacteriodetes and Proteobacteria were strongly correlated with serum TG, TCHOL and HDL levels. At the species level, Bifidobacterium pseudolongum group was seen to positively correlate with serum HDL level and negatively correlated with serum AST, ALT, LDL/VLDL, TCHOL, and TG levels.

Conclusions: TPEE treatment showed therapeutic benefits by improving the intestinal microbiota composition which strongly correlated with the serum lipid and cholesterol levels in the OVX rats.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12906-021-03486-wDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8725312PMC
January 2022

Hydrolysis of Arabinoxylo-oligosaccharides by α-L-Arabinofuranosidases and β-D-Xylosidase from .

J Microbiol Biotechnol 2022 Feb;32(2):187-194

Division of Animal, Horticultural and Food Sciences, Graduate School of Chungbuk National University, Cheongju 28644, Republic of Korea.

Two α-L-arabinofuranosidases (BfdABF1 and BfdABF3) and a β-D-xylosidase (BfdXYL2) genes were cloned from ATCC 27679, and functionally expressed in BL21(DE3). BfdABF1 showed the highest activity in 50 mM sodium acetate buffer at pH 5.0 and 25°C. This -enzyme could hydrolyze -nitrophenyl arabinofuranoside, arabino-oligosaccharides (AOS), arabinoxylo-oligosaccharides (AXOS) such as 3-α-L-arabinofuranosyl-xylobiose (AX), and 2-α-Larabinofuranosyl-xylotriose (AXX), whereas hardly hydrolyzed polymeric substrates such as debranched arabinan and arabinoxylans. BfdABF1 is a typical -ABF with the higher specific activity on the oligomeric substrates than the polymers. It prefers to α-(1,2)-L-arabinofuranosidic linkages compared to α-(1,3)-linkages. Especially, BfdABF1 could slowly hydrolyze 2,3-di-α-L-arabinofuranosyl-xylotriose (AXX). Meanwhile, BfdABF3 showed the highest activity in sodium acetate at pH 6.0 and 50°C, and it has the exclusively high activities on AXOS such as AX and AXX. BfdABF3 mainly catalyzes the removal of L-arabinose side chains from various AXOS. BfdXYL2 exhibited the highest activity in sodium citrate at pH 5.0 and 55°C, and it specifically hydrolyzed -nitrophenyl xylopyranoside and xylo-oligosaccharides (XOS). Also, BfdXYL2 could slowly hydrolyze AOS and AXOS such as AX. Based on the detailed hydrolytic modes of action of three -hydrolases (BfdABF1, BfdABF3, and BfdXYL2) from , their probable roles in the hemiceulloseutilization system of Bf. dentium are proposed in the present study. These intracellular -hydrolases can synergistically produce L-arabinose and D-xylose from various AOS, XOS, and AXOS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4014/jmb.2112.12021DOI Listing
February 2022

NADPH Oxidase and Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Are Promising Targets of Phytochemicals for Ultraviolet-Induced Skin Carcinogenesis.

Antioxidants (Basel) 2021 Nov 29;10(12). Epub 2021 Nov 29.

School of Food Science and Biotechnology, Kyungpook National University, Daegu 41566, Korea.

The skin acts as the primary defense organ that protects the body from the external environment. Skin cancer is one of the most common cancers in the world. Skin carcinogenesis is usually caused by cell degeneration due to exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation, which causes changes in various signaling networks, disrupting the homeostasis of single skin cells. In this review, we summarize the roles of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate oxidase (NOX) and epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) in UV-induced skin carcinogenesis. Furthermore, we describe the crosstalk that exists between NOX, EGFR, and protein tyrosine phosphatase κ and its oncogenic downstream signaling pathways. Chemoprevention is the use of chemical compounds to recover the healthy status of the skin or delay cancer development. Current evidence from in vitro and in vivo studies on chemopreventive phytochemicals that target NOX, EGFR, or both, as major regulators of skin carcinogenesis will also be discussed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/antiox10121909DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8750051PMC
November 2021

Control Efficacy of Bacillus velezensis AFB2-2 against Potato Late Blight Caused by Phytophthora infestans in Organic Potato Cultivation.

Plant Pathol J 2021 Dec 1;37(6):580-595. Epub 2021 Dec 1.

Organic Agriculture Division, National Institute of Agricultural Sciences, Wanju 55365, Korea.

Although late blight is an important disease in eco-friendly potato cultivation in Korea, it is highly dependent on the use of eco-friendly agricultural materials and the development of biological control technology is low. It is a necessary to develop an effective biocontrol agent to inactivate late blight in the field. AFB2-2 strain is a gram-positive with peritrichous flagella. It can utilize 20 types of carbon sources, like L-arabinose, and D-trehalose at 35°C. The optimal growth temperature of the strain is 37°C. It can survive at 20-50°C in tryptic soy broth. The maximum salt concentration tolerated by AFB2-2 strain is 7.5% NaCl. AFB2-2 strain inhibited the mycelial growth of seven plant pathogens by an average inhibitory zone of 10.2 mm or more. Among the concentrations of AFB2-2, 107 cfu/ml showed the highest control value of 85.7% in the greenhouse. Among the three concentrations of AFB2-2, the disease incidence and severity of potato late blight at 107 cfu/ml was lowest at 0.07 and 6.7, respectively. The nucleotide sequences of AFB2-2 strain were searched in the NCBI GenBank; Bacillus siamensis strain KCTC 13613, Bacillus velezensis strain CR-502, and Bacillus amyloliquefaciens strain DSM7 were found to have a genetic similarity of 99.7%, 99.7%, and 99.5%, respectively. The AFB2-2 strain was found to harbor the biosynthetic genes for bacillomycin D, iturin, and surfactin. Obtained data recommended that the B. velezensis AFB2-2 strain could be considered as a promising biocontrol agent for P. infestans in the field.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.5423/PPJ.FT.09.2021.0138DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8666241PMC
December 2021

Comparative analysis of differentially expressed genes in Acanthamoeba after ingestion of Legionella pneumophila and Escherichia coli.

Exp Parasitol 2022 Jan 25;232:108188. Epub 2021 Nov 25.

Department of Parasitology, Dong-A University College of Medicine, Busan, 49201, Republic of Korea. Electronic address:

Acanthamoeba spp. feeds on bacteria, fungi, and algae to obtain nutrients from the environment. However, several pathogens can survive and multiply in Acanthamoeba. Mechanisms necessary for the survival and proliferation of microorganisms in Acanthamoeba remain unclear. The object of this study was to identify effective factors for the survival of microorganisms in Acanthamoeba. Differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in A. castellanii infected by Legionella pneumophila or Escherichia coli were identified based on mRNA sequencing. A total of 2342 and 1878 DEGs were identified in Acanthamoeba with L. pneumophila and E. coli, respectively. Among these DEGs, 502 were up-regulated and 116 were down-regulated in Acanthamoeba infected by L. pneumophila compared to those in Acanthamoeba feed on E. coli. Gene ontology analysis showed that the genes encoded small GTPase-mediated signal transduction proteins in the biological process domain, intracellular proteins in the cellular component domain, and ATP binding proteins in the molecular function domain were up-regulated while integral components of membrane proteins in the cellular component domain were down-regulated in Acanthamoeba infected by Legionella compared to those in Acanthamoeba feed on E. coli. During endosymbiosis with Legionella, Acanthamoeba showed various changes in the expression of genes supposed to be involved in phagosomal maturation. Acanthamoeba infected by Legionella also showed high expression levels of aminotransferase, methyltransferase, and cysteine proteinase but low expression levels of RNA pseudouridine synthase superfamily protein and 2OG-Fe(II) oxygenase superfamily. These results provide directions for further research to understand the survival strategy of L. pneumophila in A. castellanii.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.exppara.2021.108188DOI Listing
January 2022
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