Publications by authors named "Muhammad Farooq"

542 Publications

Suppression of 4.1R enhances the potency of NKG2D-CAR T cells against pancreatic carcinoma via activating ERK signaling pathway.

Oncogenesis 2021 Sep 21;10(9):62. Epub 2021 Sep 21.

Shanghai Key Laboratory of Regulatory Biology, School of Life Sciences, East China Normal University, 200241, Shanghai, China.

Pancreatic carcinoma (PC) is one of the most common malignancies. Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-modified T cells has achieved remarkable efficacy in the treatment of hematological malignancies. However, lack of tumor-specific targets and the existence of inhibitory factors limit the function of CAR T cells when treating solid tumors. 4.1R has been reported to suppress the anti-tumor activity of T cell responses. In this study, we investigated the anti-tumor activity of 4.1R deletion in natural killer group 2D (NKG2D)-CAR T cells against PC. The CAR T cells were obtained by transfecting T cells with lentiviral vector carrying NKG2D-CAR, NC-NKG2D-CAR, or KD2-NKG2D-CAR. In vitro, NKG2D-CAR T cells showed higher cytotoxicity than Mock T cells. However, compared to NKG2D-CAR T cells, furtherly higher cytotoxicity against PC cells in a dose-dependent manner was found in KD2-NKG2D-CAR T cells. In addition, the proliferation rate and cytotoxic activity of KD2-NKG2D-CAR T cells were significantly higher than those of NKG2D-CAR T cells. Besides, the inhibitory receptors PD-1 and TIM-3 were expressed in lower level on KD2-NKG2D-CAR T cells. In vivo, KD2-NKG2D-CAR T cells suppressed tumor growth more effectively in a xenograft model compared to NKG2D-CAR T cells. Mechanistically, 4.1R regulated CAR T cell function via activating ERK signaling pathway. Therefore, the study provides a new idea to enhance the anti-tumor efficiency of CAR T therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41389-021-00353-8DOI Listing
September 2021

Comparison between shear wave elastography and serological findings for the evaluation of fibrosis in chronic liver disease.

J Ultrason 2021 Aug 9;21(86):e186-e193. Epub 2021 Sep 9.

Radiology, The University of Lahore, Pakistan.

In this study, we sought to examine the optimal cutoff values for predicting different stages of liver fibrosis, and to determine the level of agreement between shear wave elastography and aspartate aminotransferase to platelet ratio index (APRI) and fibrosis-4 index (FIB-4) scores in patients with chronic liver disease. A descriptive, cross-sectional study was performed at the Radiology Department of Shaukat Khanum Memorial Hospital Lahore from 1 Jun 2019 until 1 June 2020. FIB-4 and APRI scores were determined by the following formula: FIB-4 = (age × AST) ÷ (platelet count × (√ (ALT)) and APRI = (AST÷AST upper limit of normal) ÷ platelet × 100. Data was analyzed with the help of SPSS version 24.0 and Microsoft Excel 2013. Eighty individuals were conveniently selected, of which 62.5% were men and 37.5% were women. The mean age of the subjects was 43.47 SD ± 13.85 years. APRI and FIB-4 scores predicted F4 patients using the cutoff values of 0.47 (Sn. 72%, Sp. 70%) and 1.27 (Sn. 78%, Sp. 73%), respectively. The cutoff values of 0.46 for APRI and 1.27 for FIB-4 predicted F3-F4 patients (Sn. 74% and 77%; Sp. 76% and 76%), respectively. To predict F1-F4 compared to F0, the cutoff value was 0.34 (Sn. 68%, Sp. 75%) for APRI, while the cutoff value for FIB was 0.87 (Sn. 72%, Sp. 75%). The findings suggest that FIB-4 shows better diagnostic accuracy than APRI. This study provides optimal cutoff values for different groups of fibrosis patients for both serum markers. Also, the diagnostic accuracy of FIB-4 for predicting liver fibrosis was found to be superior to APRI in all disease stages.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.15557/JoU.2021.0030DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8438924PMC
August 2021

Organic and inorganic amendments for the remediation of nickel contaminated soil and its improvement on Brassica napus growth and oxidative defense.

J Hazard Mater 2021 08 21;416:125921. Epub 2021 Apr 21.

Institute of Crop Science and Zhejiang Key Laboratory of Crop Germplasm, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310058, China. Electronic address:

In-situ stabilization has been considered an effective way to remediate metal contaminated soil. Thus, pot experiments were undertaken to investigate the effectiveness of multiple stabilization agents such as biochar (BC), mussel shell (MS), zeolite (ZE) and limestone (LS) on the immobilization of Ni, physicochemical features and enzyme activities in polluted soil. Results showed that the sole application of Ni adversely affected the rapeseed growth, photosynthetic pigments, and antioxidative defense. However, the addition of amendments to the contaminated soil significantly reduced Ni bioavailability. The XRD analysis confirmed the formation of Ni related ligands and FTIR showed the presence of hydroxyl, carboxyl and sulfur functional groups, as well as complexation and adsorption of Ni on amendments. Among multiple amendments, biochar significantly enhanced plant biomass attributes and total chlorophyll content. Moreover, addition of amendments also strengthened the antioxidant defense by decreasing Ni induced oxidative stress (HO and O), increased macronutrient availability, reduced Ni uptake and improved soil health. The qPCR analysis showed that the Ni transporters were significantly suppressed by amendments, which is correlated with the lower accumulation of Ni in rapeseed. The present study showed that immobilizing agents, especially biochar, is an effective amendment to immobilize Ni in soil, which restricts its entry into the food chain.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2021.125921DOI Listing
August 2021

Cerebral Vasoconstriction After Carotid Endarterectomy and the Role of Conventional Cerebral Angiography.

Neurol Clin Pract 2021 Aug;11(4):e594-e597

Mercy Health Saint Mary's (AST, MUF, BH-G, PBG), Hauenstein Neurosciences, MI; Michigan State University (AST, MUF, PBG), College of Human Medicine, Grand Rapids; and West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine (GN), Lewisburg.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/CPJ.0000000000000941DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8382426PMC
August 2021

Rice Cultivars Under Salt Stress Show Differential Expression of Genes Related to the Regulation of Na/K Balance.

Front Plant Sci 2021 13;12:680131. Epub 2021 Aug 13.

Division of Plant Biosciences, School of Applied Biosciences, College of Agriculture and Life Science, Kyungpook National University, Daegu, South Korea.

Soil salinity is a major problem in agriculture because high accumulation of Na ions in plants causes toxicity that can result in yield reduction. Na/K homeostasis is known to be important for salt tolerance in plants. Na/K homeostasis in rice ( L.) involves nine high-affinity K transporter (HKT) encoding Na-K symporter, five OsNHX Na/H antiporters, and OsSOS1 Na/K antiporter genes. In the present study, we investigated various molecular and physiological processes to evaluate germination rate, growth pattern, ion content, and expression of , and genes related to Na/K homeostasis in different rice genotypes under salt stress. We found a significant increase in the germination percentage, plant vigor, Na/K ratio, and gene expression of the OsHKT family in both the roots and shoots of the Nagdong cultivar and salt-tolerant cultivar Pokkali. In the roots of Cheongcheong and IR28 cultivars, Na ion concentrations were found to be higher than K ion concentrations. Similarly, high expression levels of , and were observed in Cheongcheong, whereas expression levels of was high in IR28. The expression patterns of and and regulation of other micronutrients differed in the roots and shoots regions of rice and were generally increased by salt stress. The OsNHX family was also expressed at high levels in the roots of Nagdong and in the roots and shoots of Pokkali; in contrast, comparatively low expression levels were observed in the roots and shoots of Cheongcheong and IR28 (with the exception of high expression in the roots of IR28). Furthermore, the gene was highly expressed in the roots of Nagdong and shoots of Cheongcheong. We also observed that salt stress decreases chlorophyll content in IR28 and Pokkali but not in Cheongcheong and Nagdong. This study suggests that under salt stress, cultivar Nagdong has more salt-tolerance than cultivar Cheongcheong.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpls.2021.680131DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8415790PMC
August 2021

Interactive effects of biochar and mussel shell activated concoctions on immobilization of nickel and their amelioration on the growth of rapeseed in contaminated aged soil.

Chemosphere 2021 Nov 26;282:130897. Epub 2021 May 26.

Institute of Crop Science and Zhejiang Key Laboratory of Crop Germplasm, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, 310058, China; Institute of Crop Science, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs Laboratory of Spectroscopy Sensing, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, 310058, China. Electronic address:

Mussel shell (MS) and biochar (BC) are commonly used for the remediation of metal contaminated soil. However, less research has been focused to examine the efficacy of their combinations to reduce metal toxicity in crop plants. This study was therefore conducted to investigate the effects of BC, MS and their activated concoctions on the soil properties, enzyme activities and nickel (Ni) immobilization in aged Ni contaminated soil. Moreover, the growth, photosynthetic pigments and anti-oxidative machnery of Brassica napus plants has also been investigated in order to determine amendments efficiency in reducing soil Ni toxicity for plants. The results showed that the application of Ni adversely affected soil health and trigged stress responses by inducing oxidative stress in B. napus. However, the incorporation of amendments reduced the bioavailability of Ni, and the concoctions of BC and MS showed promising results in the immobilization of Ni. Among various combinations of BC and MS, treatment with BC + MS (3:1) significantly reduced Ni uptake, decreased reactive oxygen species (ROS) and enhanced antioxidant defense of B. napus plants. Results showed that amendment's combinations stimulated the transcriptional levels of ROS scavenging enzymes and suppressed the expression level of Ni transporters. The morphological and physical characterization techniques (i.e. SEM, BET, EDS, FTIR and X-ray diffraction analyses) showed that amendment's combinations had relatively higher Ni adsorption capacity, indicating that BC and MS concoctions are efficient immobilizing agents for minimizing Ni availability, preventing oxidative toxicity and promoting growth and biomass production in rapeseed plants under metal stress conditions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2021.130897DOI Listing
November 2021

Exogenous melatonin regulates chromium stress-induced feedback inhibition of photosynthesis and antioxidative protection in Brassica napus cultivars.

Plant Cell Rep 2021 Aug 21. Epub 2021 Aug 21.

Institute of Pure and Applied Biology, Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan, Pakistan.

Key Message: Melatonin is an early player in chromium stress response in canola plants; it promotes ROS scavenging and chlorophyll stability, modulates PSII stability and regulates feedback inhibition of photosynthesis conferring chromium tolerance. The development of heavy metals, especially chromium (Cr)-tolerant cultivars is mainly constrained due to poor knowledge of the mechanism behind Cr stress tolerance. In the present study, two Brassica napus contrasting cultivars Ac-Excel and DGL were studied for Cr stress tolerance by using chlorophyll a fluorescence technique and biochemical attributes with and without melatonin (MT) treatments. Cr stress significantly reduced the PSII and PSI efficiency, biomass accumulation, proline content and antioxidant enzymes in both the cultivars. The application of MT minimized the oxidative stress, as revealed via a lower level of reactive oxygen species (ROS) synthesis (HO and OH). Enhanced enzymatic activities of important antioxidants (SOD, APX, CAT, POD), proline and total soluble protein contents under MT application play an effective role in the regulation of multiple transcriptional pathways involved in oxidative stress responses. Higher NPQ and Y(NPQ) observed in Cr stress tolerant cv Ac-Excel, indicating that the MT-treated tolerant cultivar had better ability to protect PSII under Cr stress by increasing heat dissipation as photo-protective component of NPQ. Reduced PSI efficiency along with increased donor end limitation of PSI in both canola cultivars further confirmed the lower PSII activity and electron transport from PSII. The Cr content was higher in cv. DGL as compared to (that in Ac-Excel). The application of MT significantly decreased the Cr content in leaves of both cultivars. Overall, MT-induced Cr stress tolerance in canola cultivars can be related to improved PSII activity, Y(NPQ), and antioxidant potential and these physiological attributes can effectively be used to select cultivars for Cr stress tolerance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00299-021-02769-3DOI Listing
August 2021

A new neutrosophic sign test: An application to COVID-19 data.

PLoS One 2021 19;16(8):e0255671. Epub 2021 Aug 19.

Department of Statistics, Government College University Lahore, Lahore, Pakistan.

The Sign test is a famous nonparametric test from classical statistics used to assess the one or two sample averages. The test is practical when the sample size is small, or the distributional assumption under a parametric test does not satisfy. One of the limitations of the Sign test is the exact form of the data, and the existing methodology of the test does not cover the interval-valued data. The interval-valued data often comes from the fuzzy logic where the experiment's information is not sure and possesses some kind of vagueness, uncertainty or indeterminacy. This research proposed a modified version of the Sign test by considering the indeterminate state and the exact form of the data-the newly proposed sign test methodology is designed for both one-sample and two-sample hypothesis testing problems. The performance of the proposed modified versions of the Sign test is evaluated through two real-life data examples comprised of covid-19 reproduction rate and covid-positive daily occupancy in ICU in Pakistan. The findings of the study suggested that our proposed methodologies are suitable in nonparametric decision-making problems with an interval-valued data. Therefore, applying the new neutrosophic sign test is explicitly recommended in biomedical sciences, engineering, and other statistical fields under an indeterminate environment.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0255671PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8376085PMC
August 2021

One-year outcome and survival analysis of deferred ventricular septal repair in cardiogenic shock supported with mechanical circulatory support.

PLoS One 2021 18;16(8):e0256377. Epub 2021 Aug 18.

Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Mega Medical Complex Hospital, Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

Background And Objective: The effectiveness of deferred surgical repair of ventricular septal rupture (VSR) post-myocardial infarction (MI) with cardiogenic shock remains limited to case reports. Our study aimed to investigate the outcomes and survival analysis following mechanical circulatory support (MCS) in patients after VSR who develop cardiogenic shock.

Methods: We analyzed 27 patients with post-MI VSR and cardiogenic shock who received deferred surgical repair while stabilized on MCS between January 2018 and March 2020. After normality test adjustments, continuous variables were expressed as mean ± standard deviation (SD). These were compared using the Mann-Whitney U test and Student's t-test. Categorical variables were compared using chi-square or Fisher's exact test. To identify predictors of operative mortality, univariate analysis of clinical characteristics and interventions followed by logistic regression was carried out. P-value of < 0.05 was considered significant.

Results: All patients had preoperative MCS. Emergency repair was avoided in all the patients. The mean age of the participants was 64.96 with the majority being males (74.1%). On average, the mean time from MI to VSR repair was 18.85 days. Delayed revascularization was associated with increased mortality (OR 17.500, 95% CI 2.365-129.506, P = 0.005). Other factors associated with increased mortality were ejection fraction (EF), three-vessel disease, Killip class, early surgery, and prolonged use of inotropes. The operative mortality was 11% with an overall mortality of 33.3%. The one-year survival rate was 66.7%.

Conclusion: The use of MCS in adjunct to a deferred surgical approach shows an improved survival outcome of patients with VSR complicated by cardiogenic shock. Further investigations are required regarding the optimal time for MCS and surgical repair.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0256377PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8372898PMC
August 2021

Introductory programming course: review and future implications.

PeerJ Comput Sci 2021 22;7:e647. Epub 2021 Jul 22.

Department of Computer Science, University of Management and Technology, Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan.

The introductory programming course (IPC) holds a special significance in computing disciplines as this course serves as a prerequisite for studying the higher level courses. Students generally face difficulties during their initial stages of learning how to program. Continuous efforts are being made to examine this course for identifying potential improvements. This article presents the review of the state-of-the-art research exploring various components of IPC by examining sixty-six articles published between 2014 and 2020 in well-reputed research venues. The results reveal that several useful methods have been proposed to support teaching and learning in IPC. Moreover, the research in IPC presented useful ways to conduct assessments, and also demonstrated different techniques to examine improvements in the IPC contents. In addition, a variety of tools are evaluated to support the related course processes. Apart from the aforementioned facets, this research explores other interesting dimensions of IPC, such as collaborative learning, cognitive assessments, and performance predictions. In addition to reviewing the recent advancements in IPC, this study proposes a new taxonomy of IPC research dimensions. Furthermore, based on the successful practices that are listed in the literature, some useful guidelines and advices for instructors have also been reported in this article. Lastly, this review presents some pertinent open research issues to highlight the future dimensions for IPC researchers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7717/peerj-cs.647DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8323721PMC
July 2021

Identification of Candidate Gene for Internode Length in Rice to Enhance Resistance to Lodging Using QTL Analysis.

Plants (Basel) 2021 Jul 5;10(7). Epub 2021 Jul 5.

Division of Plant Biosciences, School of Applied Biosciences, College of Agriculture and Life Science, Kyungpook National University, Daegu 41566, Korea.

Internode length and stem diameter are the primary traits affecting the lodging resistance of rice. Traits related to the length of the panicle (LP), uppermost internode (LUI), second internode (LSI), third internode (LTI), fourth internode (LFI), lowest internode (LLI) as well as stem diameter at the uppermost internode (SDUI), second internode (SDSI), third internode (SDTI), fourth internode (SDFI), and lowest internode (SDLI) in 120 Cheongcheong/Nagdong doubled haploid population were investigated using a quantitative trait locus (QTL) analysis. Thirty-four QTL regions affected LP and the length of each internode. Twenty-six QTL regions were associated with the stem diameter of each internode. RM12285-RM212 on chromosome 1 contained 10 QTLs related to the internode length, which have overlapped for over 2 years. Twenty-three candidate genes were screened using mark interval. Among the candidate genes, , named , which is in the , might be involved in gibberellins (GA) synthesis. GA is an essential plant growth regulator that affects plant height. catalyzes oxidation steps in the middle part of the GA pathway. is expected to provide valuable information to improve the marker assessment for target traits and QTL gene cloning in rice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/plants10071369DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8309285PMC
July 2021

Cold Stress in Wheat: Plant Acclimation Responses and Management Strategies.

Front Plant Sci 2021 8;12:676884. Epub 2021 Jul 8.

School of Agronomy, Anhui Agricultural University, Hefei, China.

Unpredicted variability in temperature is associated with frequent extreme low-temperature events. Wheat is a leading crop in fulfilling global food requirements. Climate-driven temperature extremes influence the vegetative and reproductive growth of wheat, followed by a decrease in yield. This review describes how low temperature induces a series of modifications in the morphophysiological, biochemical, and molecular makeup of wheat and how it is perceived. To cope with these modifications, crop plants turn on their cold-tolerance mechanisms, characterized by accumulating soluble carbohydrates, signaling molecules, and cold tolerance gene expressions. The review also discusses the integrated management approaches to enhance the performance of wheat plants against cold stress. In this review, we propose strategies for improving the adaptive capacity of wheat besides alleviating risks of cold anticipated with climate change.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpls.2021.676884DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8299469PMC
July 2021

Shoulder pain and functional disability in type 1 diabetic patients: A cross-sectional survey.

Pak J Med Sci 2021 Jul-Aug;37(4):1211-1214

Jaweria Syed, MS-SPT Shifa Tameer-e-Millat University, Islamabad, Pakistan.

Objective: To assess the prevalence of shoulder pain and functional disability (SPFD) in Type-1 diabetic patients, and to explore its association with duration of the disease, age and gender.

Methods: A cross-sectional survey was carried out on previously diagnosed patients with Type-1 diabetes mellitus between April 2019 and March 2020. Data was collected from six hospitals including three tertiary care hospitals of Islamabad and Rawalpindi. Three hundred and twenty-eight patients were recruited through convenience sampling. Shoulder Pain and Disability Index was used to determine SPFD among participants. Point-biserial and Pearson correlation coefficients were calculated to find out the correlation between the variables. Independent t-test was used to determine the difference in the mean scores between the variables.

Results: The prevalence of SPFD was found 85.7%. A significant correlation was found of the SPFD with age (r = 0.332, p < 0.001), duration of the diabetes mellitus (r = 0.154, p = 0.005) and gender (r = 0.171, p = 0.002). A significant difference was found in SPFD mean scores between female and male patients (female patients = 43.42±22.80, male patients = 35.31±22.91, p = 0.002).

Conclusion: SPFD seems prevalent among Type-1 diabetic patients. Increasing age, long history of diabetes mellitus and female gender appear the associated risk factors for the shoulder pain and disability.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12669/pjms.37.4.3401DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8281183PMC
July 2020

Zinc biofortification potential of diverse mungbean [Vigna radiata (L.) Wilczek] genotypes under field conditions.

PLoS One 2021 23;16(6):e0253085. Epub 2021 Jun 23.

Departmnet of Agronomy, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Ghazi University, Dera Ghazi Khan, Pakistan.

Zinc (Zn) is an important micronutrient for crop plants and essential for human health. The Zn-deficiency is an important malnutrition problem known globally. Biofortified foods could overcome Zn deficiency in humans. Mungbean [Vigna radiata (L.) Wilczek] is an important, pulse crop frequently grown in arid and semi-arid regions of the world. Mungbean could provide essential micronutrients, including Zn to humans. Therefore, it is very important to investigate the impact of Zn fertilization on the yield and grain biofortification of mungbean. Twelve mungbean genotypes (i.e., NM-28, NM-2011, NM-13-1, NM-2006, NM-51, NM-54, NM-19-19, NM-92, NM-121-25, NM-20-21, 7006, 7008) were assessed for their genetic diversity followed by Zn-biofortification, growth and yield under control (0 kg ha-1) and Zn-fertilized (10 kg ha-1) conditions. Data relating to allometric traits, yield components, grain yield and grain Zn contents were recorded. Zinc fertilization improved entire allometric and yield-related traits. Grain yield of different genotypes ranged from 439 to 904 kg ha-1 under control and 536 to 1462 kg ha-1 under Zn-fertilization. Zinc concentration in the grains varied from 15.50 to 45.60 mg kg-1 under control and 18.53 to 64.23 mg kg-1 under Zn-fertilized conditions. The tested genotypes differed in their Zn-biofortification potential. The highest and the lowest grain Zn contents were noted for genotypes NM-28 and NM-121-25, respectively. Significant variation in yield and Zn-biofortification indicated the potential for improvement in mungbean yield and grain Zn-biofortification. The genotypes NM-28 and NM-2006 could be used in breeding programs for improvement in grain Zn concentration due to their high Zn uptake potential. Nonetheless, all available genotypes in the country should be screened for their Zn-biofortification potential.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0253085PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8221514PMC
June 2021

A framework for the prediction of earthquake using federated learning.

PeerJ Comput Sci 2021 28;7:e540. Epub 2021 May 28.

Department of Computer Science, University of Management & Technology, Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan.

Earthquakes are a natural phenomenon which may cause significant loss of life and infrastructure. Researchers have applied multiple artificial intelligence based techniques to predict earthquakes, but high accuracies could not be achieved due to the huge size of multidimensional data, communication delays, transmission latency, limited processing capacity and data privacy issues. Federated learning (FL) is a machine learning (ML) technique that provides an opportunity to collect and process data onsite without compromising on data privacy and preventing data transmission to the central server. The federated concept of obtaining a global data model by aggregation of local data models inherently ensures data security, data privacy, and data heterogeneity. In this article, a novel earthquake prediction framework using FL has been proposed. The proposed FL framework has given better performance over already developed ML based earthquake predicting models in terms of efficiency, reliability, and precision. We have analyzed three different local datasets to generate multiple ML based local data models. These local data models have been aggregated to generate global data model on the central FL server using FedQuake algorithm. Meta classifier has been trained at the FL server on global data model to generate more accurate earthquake predictions. We have tested the proposed framework by analyzing multidimensional seismic data within 100 km radial area from 34.708° N, 72.5478° E in Western Himalayas. The results of the proposed framework have been validated against instrumentally recorded regional seismic data of last thirty-five years, and 88.87% prediction accuracy has been recorded. These results obtained by the proposed framework can serve as a useful component in the development of earthquake early warning systems.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7717/peerj-cs.540DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8176529PMC
May 2021

Nanotechnology: A novel tool to enhance the bioavailability of micronutrients.

Food Sci Nutr 2021 Jun 4;9(6):3354-3361. Epub 2021 May 4.

Department of Food Engineering and Technology Faculty of Engineering and Technology University of Gezira Wad Medani Sudan.

Nanotechnology has revolutionized the field of food systems, diagnostics, therapeutics, pharmaceuticals, the agriculture sector, and nutraceuticals. Nanoparticles are playing important role in giving the solution to enhance bioavailability of oral delivery of bioactive compounds. This review revealed that nanoparticles can improve the bioavailability of micronutrients, for example, vitamin B, vitamin A, folic acid, and iron. However, toxicity associated with nanoparticle-based delivery systems is still a major concern after ingestion of nano-based supplements. The mode of the mechanism of nanomaterial along with bioactive components in different physiological conditions of the human body is also a major gap in the field of nanoceuticals. In the future, more evidence-based clinical investigations are needed to confirm the exact approach to physiological changes in the human body.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/fsn3.2311DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8194941PMC
June 2021

Characteristics and outcomes of patients with COVID-19 supported by extracorporeal membrane oxygenation: A retrospective multicenter study.

J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2021 May 18. Epub 2021 May 18.

Department of Cardiothoracic and Vascular Surgery, Montefiore Medical Center, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY.

Objective: To determine characteristics, outcomes, and clinical factors associated with death in patients with COVID-19 requiring extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) support.

Methods: A multicenter, retrospective cohort study was conducted. The cohort consisted of adult patients (18 years of age and older) requiring ECMO in the period from March 1, 2020, to September 30, 2020. The primary outcome was in-hospital mortality after ECMO initiation assessed with a time to event analysis at 90 days. Multivariable Cox proportional regression was used to determine factors associated with in-hospital mortality.

Results: Overall, 292 patients from 17 centers comprised the study cohort. Patients were 49 (interquartile range, 39-57) years old and 81 (28%) were female. At the end of the follow-up period, 19 (6%) patients were still receiving ECMO, 25 (9%) were discontinued from ECMO but remained hospitalized, 135 (46%) were discharged or transferred alive, and 113 (39%) died during the hospitalization. The cumulative in-hospital mortality at 90 days was 42% (95% confidence interval [CI], 36%-47%). Factors associated with in-hospital mortality were age (adjusted hazard ratio [aHR], 1.31; 95% CI, 1.06-1.61 per 10 years), renal dysfunction measured according to serum creatinine level (aHR, 1.21; 95% CI, 1.01-1.45), and cardiopulmonary resuscitation before ECMO placement (aHR, 1.87; 95% CI, 1.01-3.46).

Conclusions: In patients with severe COVID-19 necessitating ECMO support, in-hospital mortality occurred in fewer than half of the cases. ECMO might serve as a viable modality for terminally ill patients with refractory COVID-19.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jtcvs.2021.04.089DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8130603PMC
May 2021

Challenges and prospects for a potential allohexaploid Brassica crop.

Theor Appl Genet 2021 Sep 4;134(9):2711-2726. Epub 2021 Jun 4.

Institute of Crop Science and Zhejiang Key Laboratory of Crop Germplasm, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, 310058, China.

The production of a new allohexaploid Brassica crop (2n = AABBCC) is increasingly attracting international interest: a new allohexaploid crop could benefit from several major advantages over the existing Brassica diploid and allotetraploid species, combining genetic diversity and traits from all six crop species with additional allelic heterosis from the extra genome. Although early attempts to produce allohexaploids showed mixed results, recent technological and conceptual advances have provided promising leads to follow. However, there are still major challenges which exist before this new crop type can be realized: (1) incorporation of sufficient genetic diversity to form a basis for breeding and improvement of this potential crop species; (2) restoration of regular meiosis, as most allohexaploids are genetically unstable after formation; and (3) improvement of agronomic traits to the level of "elite" breeding material in the diploid and allotetraploid crop species. In this review, we outline these major prospects and challenges and propose possible plans to produce a stable, diverse and agronomically viable allohexaploid Brassica crop.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00122-021-03845-8DOI Listing
September 2021

Health risk assessment of endocrine disruptor bisphenol A leaching from plastic bottles of milk and soft drinks.

Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 2021 Jun 3. Epub 2021 Jun 3.

Institute of Environmental Engineering and Research, University of Engineering and Technology, Lahore, 54890, Pakistan.

Bisphenol A (BPA) is of major concern to public health due to its toxic potential and xenoestrogenic endocrine-disrupting effect. One of the major sources of BPA comes from the plastic bottles used to pack milk and soft drinks. The purpose of the present study was to assess and compare the risk associated with BPA transfer from plastic bottles to milk and soft drinks being stored in summer and winter conditions. A sensitive and reliable method of solid phase extraction cartridge packed with multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) was employed. In milk samples (supplied in plastic bottles) of winter season, BPA levels were 0.17-0.32 mg/ kg. In milk samples of summer season, BPA levels were 0.77-1.59 mg/ kg. In soft drink samples of winter, BPA levels were between 0.14 and 0.3 mg/kg. While in 4-month-aged summer soft drink samples, BPA levels were 0.7-1.02 mg/kg of food. The daily exposure dose (DED) of BPA in milk samples of winter season was 1.42-2.67 μg/kg which was below the standard tolerable daily intake (TDI) of 50 μg of BPA/kg of body weight as per USEPA. The DED of BPA in milk samples of summer season was 5.58-10 μg/kg of body weight which was also less than TDI. For soft drink samples, BPA from winter samples was ranged from 1.17 to 1.67 μg/kg of body weight while for summer 4-month-aged samples was 2.5-7.08 μg/kg of body weight. Both types of samples were still less than TDI of BPA.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11356-021-14653-4DOI Listing
June 2021

Structural Imaging Characteristic, Clinical Features and Risk Factors of Cerebral Venous Sinus Thrombosis: A Prospective Cross-Sectional Analysis from a Tertiary Care Hospital in Pakistan.

Diagnostics (Basel) 2021 May 26;11(6). Epub 2021 May 26.

Department of Neurology, King Edward Medical University, Lahore 54000, Pakistan.

Cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) is a rare cause of stroke that accounts for 0.5-1.0% of all strokes. Clinical presentation, predisposing factors, neuroimaging findings, and outcomes of CVST are extremely diverse, which causes a high index of suspicion in diagnosis. Therefore, early diagnosis of CVST is crucial for prompt treatment to prevent morbidity and mortality.

Objective: The purpose of this prospective study is aimed at assessing the clinical characteristics, potential risk factors, and neuro-radiological features along with the topography of venous sinus involved in CVST patients in a tertiary care hospital, Lahore, Pakistan.

Material And Methods: Consecutive patients enrolled in this study had a computed tomography (CT) scan, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and magnetic resonance venography (MRV) along with a clinical presentation to confirm the diagnosis of CVST. Categorical data were presented as percentages. Continuous variable and categorical data were compared (parenchymal lesions vs. non-parenchymal lesions) using the Student's t-test and Chi-square test, respectively.

Results: A total of 3261 patients with stroke were presented during the study period. Out of all patients, 53 confirmed patients with CVST (1.6%) were recruited; the predominant population was female (84.91%), having a male to female ratio of 1:4. Mean age of the cohort was 28.39 ± 7.19 years. Most frequent symptoms observed were headache (92.45%) followed by vomiting (75.47%), seizures (62.26%), papilledema (54.72%), visual impairment (41.51%), and altered consciousness disturbance (52.83%). The presumed risk factors associated with CVST were puerperium (52.83%), use of oral contraceptives (13.21%), antiphospholipid syndrome (7.55%), elevated serum levels of protein C and S (5.66%), and CNS infection (3.77%). On cranial CT scans, 50 patients (94.33%) showed abnormalities while 32 patients exhibited various parenchymal lesions. Seizures were more frequent in CVST patients with parenchymal lesions compared with subjects lacking parenchymal lesions. Seventy-two sinuses, either single or in combination, were involved in CVST patients, being more common in patients with parenchymal lesions than those without parenchymal lesions. The most frequent locations of CVST were the superior sagittal and transverse sinus.

Conclusion: In short, non-contrast CT brain may be used as a first line investigation in suspected cases of CVST. Our study also demonstrates some regional differences in the clinical features, risk factors, and neuroimaging details of CVST as described by some other studies. Therefore, care must be taken while diagnosing and predicting the outcome of the CVST.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics11060958DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8229012PMC
May 2021

Speckle-Tracking Echocardiography with Novel Imaging Technique of Higher Frame Rate.

J Clin Med 2021 May 13;10(10). Epub 2021 May 13.

Division of Cardiology, Montefiore Medical Center, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, 111 East 210th Street, Bronx, NY 10467, USA.

The accuracy of speckle-tracking echocardiography (STE) depends on temporal resolution. The goal of this study was to demonstrate the feasibility of relatively high frame rate (rHi-FR) (~200 fps) for STE. In this prospective study, echocardiographic images were acquired using clinical scanners on patients with normal left ventricular systolic function using rHi-FR and conventional frame rate (Reg-FR) (~50 FPS). GLS values were evaluated on apical 4-, 2- and 3-chamber images acquired in both rHi-FR and Reg-FR. Inter-observer and intra-observer variabilities were assessed in rHi-FR and Reg-FR. There were 143 echocardiograms evaluated in this study. The frame rate of rHi-FR was 190 ± 25 and Reg-FR was 50 ± 3, and the heart rate was 71 ± 13. Absolute strain values measured in rHi-FR were significantly higher than those measured in Reg-FR (all < 0.001). Inter-observer and intra-observer correlations were strong in both rHi-FR and Reg-FR. We demonstrated that absolute strain values were significantly higher using rHi-FR when compared with Reg-FR. It is plausible that higher temporal resolution enabled the measurement of myocardial strain at desired time point. Further investigations are necessary to evaluate the value of rHi-FR to assess myocardial strain in the setting of tachycardia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/jcm10102095DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8153006PMC
May 2021

Use of diesel and emulsified diesel in CI engine: A comparative analysis of engine characteristics.

Sci Prog 2021 Apr-Jun;104(2):368504211020930

Lahore Grammar School, Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan.

Despite a number of efforts to evaluate the utility of water-diesel emulsions (WED) in CI engine to improve its performance and reduce its emissions in search of alternative fuels to combat the higher prices and depleting resources of fossil fuels, no consistent results are available. Additionally, the noise emissions in the case of WED are not thoroughly discussed which motivated this research to analyze the performance and emission characteristics of WED. Brake thermal efficiency (BTE) and brake specific fuel consumption (BSFC) were calculated at 1600 rpm within 15%-75% of the load range. Similarly, the contents of NOx, CO, and HC, and level of noise and smoke were measured varying the percentage of water from 2% to 10% gradually for all values of loads. BTE in the case of water emulsified diesel was decreased gradually as the percentage of water increased accompanied by a gradual increase in BSFC. Thus, WED10 showed a maximum 13.08% lower value of BTE while BSFC was increased by 32.28%. However, NOx emissions (21.8%) and smoke (48%) were also reduced significantly in the case of WED10 along with an increase in the emissions of HC and CO and noise. The comparative analysis showed that the emulsified diesel can significantly reduce the emission of NOx and smoke, but it has a negative impact on the performance characteristics and HC, CO, and noise emissions which can be mitigated by trying more fuels variations such as biodiesel and using different water injection methods to decrease dependency on fossil fuels and improve the environmental impacts of CI engines.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/00368504211020930DOI Listing
May 2021

Outflow graft obstruction in patients with the HM 3 LVAD: A percutaneous approach.

Catheter Cardiovasc Interv 2021 May 28. Epub 2021 May 28.

Division of Cardiology, Montefiore Medical Center and Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, USA.

Background: The use of the HeartMate 3 (HM3) left ventricular assist device (LVAD) is expanding. Despite being associated with lower rates of adverse events and increased survival, outflow graft obstruction (OGO) has been reported in patients with HM3. The incidence and best management of this serious complication remain unclear.

Methods: We describe six cases of HM3 OGO occurring in five patients in our institutional HM3 cohort. Four cases underwent computed tomography angiography and in two percutaneous angiography was directly performed to confirm the diagnosis. In four cases, percutaneous repair of the OG was performed using common interventional cardiology (IC) techniques.

Results: Our institutional incidence of OGO was 7% (event rate of 0.05 per patient year); much higher than the previously reported incidence of 1.6%. All cases occurred in the bend relief covered segment. Only two patients had apparent OG twisting, and in two, OGO occurred despite placement of an anti-twist clip at the time of implant. External compression seems to play a role in most cases. Balloon "graftoplasty" and stent deployment via the femoral artery alleviated the obstruction and normalized LVAD flow in all patients who underwent percutaneous repair. The use of self-expanding stents allowed for downsizing of the procedural access site to 10 Fr. No serious procedure-related complications occurred.

Conclusion: OGO is common in HM3 patients, external compression due to biomaterial accumulated surrounding the OG is a common etiology. Percutaneous repair using standard IC techniques is safe and feasible in cases of compression with or without partial twisting.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ccd.29785DOI Listing
May 2021

Investigating the structural properties and in vitro digestion of rice flours.

Food Sci Nutr 2021 May 13;9(5):2668-2675. Epub 2021 Mar 13.

Department of Forestry and Range Management University of Agriculture Faisalabad Pakistan.

The physicochemical properties, swelling power, solubility, and digestibility of flour from four rice varieties (black, brown, white, and waxy rice flour) were analyzed. The results showed that the black and brown rice had high-amylose percentage (21.8% and 20.5%), a relatively low percentage of starch content (68.1% and 79.1%), and lower swelling power (6.6% and 7.6%) and solubility (13.5% and 15.7%), respectively. Waxy rice flour attributed to lower gelatinization temperatures and higher enthalpy values. Meanwhile, the brown, black, and white rice showed higher gelatinization temperature and lower enthalpy value. The black and brown rice flour exhibited lower pasting and viscosity values as compared to waxy rice flour. The results showed that all rice flour had an A-type X-ray diffraction pattern, and after cooking all rice flour showed V-type polymorphs except waxy rice flour. Brown and black rice flour after cooking have lower digestion rate than white rice and waxy rice flour, probably due to its lower expansion and solubility rates, and higher gelatinization temperature.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/fsn3.2225DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8116841PMC
May 2021

COVID-19 in heart transplant recipients-A seroprevalence survey.

Clin Transplant 2021 07 3;35(7):e14329. Epub 2021 May 3.

Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, Montefiore Medical Center, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY, USA.

The clinical spectrum of COVID-19 in heart transplant recipients has not been fully defined, because asymptomatic and sub-clinical cases are difficult to capture. Seroprevalence surveys are an important tool to identify not just cases that have come to clinical attention, but all previously infected recipients. We performed a seroprevalence survey of the adult heart transplant program at a large New York City Hospital System. A total of 232 (87% of recipients being followed) subjects were tested, of whom 37 (15.9%) were found to be previously infected. This is comparable to the overall rate of prior infection in the NYC metro area. Disease course tended to be more severe than in the general population; however, this was at least partially driven by traditional risk factors of age and comorbidities. Lastly, 9 of 10 recipients who were initially found to be PCR positive subsequently tested positive for antibodies, confirming the ability of this population to mount a humoral response. In conclusion, prevalence of COVID-19 in heart transplant recipients on immunosuppression was comparable to that in the general population of NYC, and 90% of those with an initially positive viral swab developed antibodies. In those who are infected, disease course tends to be more severe.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ctr.14329DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8209901PMC
July 2021

Formulation, optimization, and characterization of whey protein isolate nanocrystals for celecoxib delivery.

J Microencapsul 2021 Aug 19;38(5):314-323. Epub 2021 May 19.

Department of Pharmaceutics, School of Pharmacy, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing, PR China.

Aim: Current study aimed to improve the solubility and release profile of the celecoxib for cancer application. However, the low water solubility of celecoxib limited its application for cancer chemotherapy. Hence, new drug delivery-based approaches are compulsory for the efficient delivery of hydrophobic celecoxib for chemotherapy.

Methods: The celecoxib-loaded nanocrystals were prepared by anti-solvent precipitation-ultrasonication technique, and the formulation was optimised through various process parameters.

Results: The optimised formulation had an average particle diameter of 171.09 ± 6.23 nm, with a PDI of 0.123 ± 0.009 and high ZP -27.3 ± 0.2 mV. The optimised formulation was stable, had higher entrapment efficiency 97.26 ± 1.12%. The conformational changes in the denatured protein solution were detected through fluorescence spectroscopy. The transmission electron microscopy investigation showed rod-shaped nanocrystals morphology, and no chemical interactions were observed in optimised formulation through FTIR. The DSC and PXRD analysis exhibited an amorphous state of the freeze-dried formulation drug. Also, optimised nanocrystals enhance drug solubility around 26.01-fold, 15.51-fold and 19.08-fold in purified water, pH 6.8 and pH 7.4, and accomplish sustained drug delivery, respectively.

Conclusion: It can be concluded that biopolymer-coated celecoxib nanocrystals might be potential drug delivery of hydrophobic molecules for cancer therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02652048.2021.1915398DOI Listing
August 2021

Physiological and biochemical responses of soybean plants inoculated with Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and Bradyrhizobium under drought stress.

BMC Plant Biol 2021 Apr 22;21(1):195. Epub 2021 Apr 22.

Department of Agricultural Microbiology, Faculty of Agriculture, Mansoura University, Mansoura, 35516, Egypt.

Background: The present study aims to study the effects of biofertilizers potential of Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungi (AMF) and Bradyrhizobium japonicum (B. japonicum) strains on yield and growth of drought stressed soybean (Giza 111) plants at early pod stage (50 days from sowing, R3) and seed development stage (90 days from sowing, R5).

Results: Highest plant biomass, leaf chlorophyll content, nodulation, and grain yield were observed in the unstressed plants as compared with water stressed-plants at R3 and R5 stages. At soil rhizosphere level, AMF and B. japonicum treatments improved bacterial counts and the activities of the enzymes (dehydrogenase and phosphatase) under well-watered and drought stress conditions. Irrespective of the drought effects, AMF and B. japonicum treatments improved the growth and yield of soybean under both drought (restrained irrigation) and adequately-watered conditions as compared with untreated plants. The current study revealed that AMF and B. japonicum improved catalase (CAT) and peroxidase (POD) in the seeds, and a reverse trend was observed in case of malonaldehyde (MDA) and proline under drought stress. The relative expression of the CAT and POD genes was up-regulated by the application of biofertilizers treatments under drought stress condition. Interestingly a reverse trend was observed in the case of the relative expression of the genes involved in the proline metabolism such as P5CS, P5CR, PDH, and P5CDH under the same conditions. The present study suggests that biofertilizers diminished the inhibitory effect of drought stress on cell development and resulted in a shorter time for DNA accumulation and the cycle of cell division. There were notable changes in the activities of enzymes involved in the secondary metabolism and expression levels of GmSPS1, GmSuSy, and GmC-INV in the plants treated with biofertilizers and exposed to the drought stress at both R3 and R5 stages. These changes in the activities of secondary metabolism and their transcriptional levels caused by biofertilizers may contribute to increasing soybean tolerance to drought stress.

Conclusions: The results of this study suggest that application of biofertilizers to soybean plants is a promising approach to alleviate drought stress effects on growth performance of soybean plants. The integrated application of biofertilizers may help to obtain improved resilience of the agro ecosystems to adverse impacts of climate change and help to improve soil fertility and plant growth under drought stress.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12870-021-02949-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8061216PMC
April 2021

Circular DNA enrichment sequencing reveals the viral/satellites genetic diversity associated with the third epidemic of cotton leaf curl disease.

Biol Methods Protoc 2021 25;6(1):bpab005. Epub 2021 Mar 25.

Agricultural Biotechnology Division, National Institute for Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering (NIBGE), Constituent College, Pakistan Institute of Engineering and Applied Sciences (PIEAS), Faisalabad 38000, Pakistan.

Cotton leaf curl disease (CLCuD) is the most important limiting factor for cotton production in Pakistan. The CLCuD passed through two major epidemics in this region with distinct begomoviruses/satellites complexes. Since 2015 the disease has again started to appear in epidemic form, causing heavy losses to cotton crop, which we termed as the "third epidemic". We applied CIDER-seq (Circular DNA Enrichment Sequencing), a recently developed sequencing method for PCR-free virus enrichment to produce a full length read of a single circular viral genome coupled with Sanger sequencing to explore the genetic diversity of the disease complex. We identified a highly recombinant strain of and a recently evolved strain of that are dominant in all major cotton growing regions in the country. Moreover, we also identified multiple species of alphasatellites with one distinct species, (MeYVMA) for the first time in cotton. Relative abundance of virus and associated satellites was also determined by real-time quantitative PCR. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study that determined the CLCuD complex associated with its third epidemic.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/biomethods/bpab005DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8046901PMC
March 2021

A GDF5 frameshift mutation segregating with Grebe type chondrodysplasia and brachydactyly type C+ in a 6 generations family: Clinical report and mini review.

Eur J Med Genet 2021 Jul 16;64(7):104226. Epub 2021 Apr 16.

Human Molecular Genetics Laboratory, National Institute for Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering (NIBGE) College, PIEAS, Faisalabad, Pakistan. Electronic address:

Different mutations in the Growth/Differentiation Factor 5 gene (GDF5) have been associated with varying types of skeletal dysplasia, including Grebe type chondrodysplasia (GTC), Hunter-Thompson syndrome, Du Pan Syndrome and Brachydactyly type C (BDC). Heterozygous pathogenic mutations exert milder effects, whereas homozygous mutations are known to manifest more severe phenotypes. In this study, we report a GDF5 frameshift mutation (c.404delC) segregating over six generations in an extended consanguineous Pakistani family. The family confirmed that both GTC and BDC are part of the GDF5 mutational spectrum, with severe GTC associated with homozygosity, and with a wide phenotypic variability among heterozygous carriers, ranging from unaffected non-penetrant carriers, to classical BDC and to novel unclassified types of brachydactylies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejmg.2021.104226DOI Listing
July 2021

Cationic chitosan-modified silica nanoparticles for oral delivery of protein vaccine.

J Biomed Mater Res A 2021 Nov 19;109(11):2111-2119. Epub 2021 Apr 19.

Department of Pharmaceutics, School of Pharmacy, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing, Jiangsu, China.

Mesoporous silica nanoparticles coated with Chitosan are exploited here as a potential carrier for oral vaccine delivery. Bovine serum albumin (BSA) was used as a protein antigen model to reveal the carrier property. Chitosan-coated BSA-loaded silica NPs had particle size 345 ± 60 nm with a cationic surface charge of 18.28 ± 0.71 mV. The encapsulation efficiency, drug loading was 25.34 ± 0.76 and 20.21 ± 0.48%, respectively. Transmission electron microscopy investigation showed the spherical shape of NPs, also confirmed surface coating around modified nanoparticles (NPs), and nitrogen absorption/desorption isotherm confirmed mesostructured inside the NPs. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy did not show any physiochemical interactions between excipients and formulations. The structural stability of antigen after release from NPs was confirmed by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis analysis, and chitosan-coated silica NPs exhibited a slow-release pattern. The results of in vivo experiments presented that chitosan-mesoporous silica NPs could induce a robust immune response in mice, indicating that chitosan-mesoporous silica NPs might be used as a promising carrier for oral vaccine delivery.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jbm.a.37198DOI Listing
November 2021
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