Publications by authors named "Muhammad Naveed"

226 Publications

Retraction: Nutritional and Biochemical Parameters Among Multiple Sclerosis Patients: A Case-Control Study.

Cureus 2021 May 27;13(5):r31. Epub 2021 May 27.

Cardiology, Allama Iqbal Memorial Teaching Hospital, Sialkot, PAK.

[This retracts the article DOI: 10.7759/cureus.15108.].
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7759/cureus.r31DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8164918PMC
May 2021

Nutritional and Biochemical Parameters Among Multiple Sclerosis Patients: A Case-Control Study.

Cureus 2021 May 19;13(5):e15108. Epub 2021 May 19.

Cardiology, Allama Iqbal Memorial Teaching Hospital, Sialkot, PAK.

Background The pathogenesis and prognosis of multiple sclerosis (MS) is an area of active medical research. Dietary and biochemical parameters such as serum 25-dihydroxycholecalciferol, magnesium, and potassium play a role in disease progression. This study aimed to compare the nutritional status and biochemical profile of patients with and without MS. Methodology This case-control study included a total of 112 participants (56 in the control group and 56 in the MS group). The participants' socioeconomic and demographic profiles, nutritional status, and biochemical details were all gathered using history, patient files, and records. The effect of these parameters on the presence of MS was evaluated using a decision tree model. Student's t-test and Mann-Whitney U test were performed to compare these parameters. Results A decision tree model was developed with an accuracy rate of 86.52%. The vitamin and mineral intake of the groups showed significant statistical differences (p = 0.001). The differences were important in terms of biochemical parameters, especially serum levels of 25-dihydroxycholecalciferol and potassium. Conclusions The key parameters that varied between MS patients and the control group, according to the constructed decision tree, were serum levels of 25-dihydroxycholecalciferol, magnesium, calcium, potassium, and carbohydrate intake. Nutritional measures against MS can be taken based on the decision tree.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7759/cureus.15108DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8211432PMC
May 2021

Design of a novel multiple epitope-based vaccine: An immunoinformatics approach to combat SARS-CoV-2 strains.

J Infect Public Health 2021 Jul 4;14(7):938-946. Epub 2021 May 4.

Manchester Institute of Biotechnology, The University of Manchester, 131 Princess Street, Manchester M1 7DN, United Kingdom. Electronic address:

Background: Since the SARS-CoV-2 outbreak in December 2019 in Wuhan, China, the virus has infected more than 153 million individuals across the world due to its human-to-human transmission. The USA is the most affected country having more than 32-million cases till date. Sudden high fever, pneumonia and organ failure have been observed in infected individuals.

Objectives: In the current situation of emerging viral disease, there is no specific vaccine, or any therapeutics available for SARS-CoV-2, thus there is a dire need to design a potential vaccine to combat the virus by developing immunity in the population. The purpose of present study was to develop a potential vaccine by targeting B and T-cell epitopes using bioinformatics approaches.

Methods: B- and T-cell epitopes are predicted from novel M protein-SARS-CoV-2 for the development of a unique multiple epitope vaccine by applying bioinformatics approaches. These epitopes were analyzed and selected for their immunogenicity, antigenicity scores, and toxicity in correspondence to their ability to trigger immune response. In combination to epitopes, best multi-epitope of potential immunogenic property was constructed. The epitopes were joined using EAAAK, AAY and GPGPG linkers.

Results: The constructed vaccine showed good results of worldwide population coverage and promising immune response. This constructed vaccine was subjected to in-silico immune simulations by C-ImmSim. Chimeric protein construct was cloned into PET28a (+) vector for expression study in Escherichia coli using snapgene.

Conclusion: This vaccine design proved effective in various computer-based immune response analysis as well as showed good population coverage. This study is solely dependent on developing M protein-based vaccine, and these in silico findings would be a breakthrough in the development of an effective vaccine to eradicate SARS-CoV-2 globally.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jiph.2021.04.010DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8093003PMC
July 2021

The electrophysiological effects of cannabidiol on action potentials and transmembrane potassium currents in rabbit and dog cardiac ventricular preparations.

Arch Toxicol 2021 Jul 24;95(7):2497-2505. Epub 2021 May 24.

Department of Pharmacology and Pharmacotherapy, Faculty of Medicine, University of Szeged, Dóm tér 12, 6720, Szeged, Hungary.

Cannabis use is associated with known cardiovascular side effects such as cardiac arrhythmias or even sudden cardiac death. The mechanisms behind these adverse effects are unknown. The aim of the present work was to study the cellular cardiac electrophysiological effects of cannabidiol (CBD) on action potentials and several transmembrane potassium currents, such as the rapid (I) and slow (I) delayed rectifier, the transient outward (I) and inward rectifier (I) potassium currents in rabbit and dog cardiac preparations. CBD increased action potential duration (APD) significantly in both rabbit (from 211.7 ± 11.2. to 224.6 ± 11.4 ms, n = 8) and dog (from 215.2 ± 9.0 to 231.7 ± 4.7 ms, n = 6) ventricular papillary muscle at 5 µM concentration. CBD decreased I, I and I (only in dog) significantly with corresponding estimated EC values of 4.9, 3.1 and 5 µM, respectively, without changing I. Although the EC value of CBD was found to be higher than literary C values after CBD smoking and oral intake, our results raise the possibility that potassium channel inhibition by lengthening cardiac repolarization might have a role in the possible proarrhythmic side effects of cannabinoids in situations where CBD metabolism and/or the repolarization reserve is impaired.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00204-021-03086-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8241752PMC
July 2021

Sedative-hypnotic effect and in silico study of dinaphthodiospyrols isolated from Diospyros lotus Linn.

Biomed Pharmacother 2021 Aug 19;140:111745. Epub 2021 May 19.

School of Agriculture and Food, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, VIC 3010, Australia.

Traditionally, Diospyros lotus Linn is used for insomnia and other associated disorders. Insomnia is a worldwide disorder with different etiology which is treated with different synthetic medicine associated with addiction. Natural products are generally devoid of such addition with good efficacy. Current research was conducted to evaluate the sedative and hypnotic effects of dimeric naphthoquinones such as dinaphthodiospyrol A (1), dinaphthodiospyrol B (2), dinaphthodiospyrol C (3), dinaphthodiospyrol D (4), dinaphthodiospyrol E (5) and dinaphthodiospyrol F (6) isolated from the chloroform fractions of D. lotus. The sedative and hypnotic effects at the dose of 5 and 10 mg/kg (each compound) were assessed through open field and phenobarbital induced sleep test, respectively. In the case of open field test the administration of tested compounds significantly hindered the movement of animals, while in case of hypnotic effect the tested samples significantly improved the onset and duration of sleep as compared to control. The overall effects were in a dose dependent manner. The compounds were also assessed for acute toxicity, but no toxicity was observed. In this regard, our research triumphantly announced the strong chemical base for the folkloric values of the plant with their fringe benefits and implemented a platform for further aspects of mechanistic and clinical studies. A possible mechanism of in vivo inhibition was studied by using docking simulations on GABA receptors. Binding orientations and types of interactions revealed that a possible mechanism behind these pharmacological actions might be interaction with GABA receptors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biopha.2021.111745DOI Listing
August 2021

Are telechelic polysiloxanes better than hemi-telechelic for self-cleaning applications?

J Colloid Interface Sci 2021 Oct 6;600:174-186. Epub 2021 May 6.

School of Packaging, Michigan State University, 448 Wilson Road, East Lansing, MI 48824-1223, USA. Electronic address:

Hypothesis: Polysiloxanes are becoming new trend in self-cleaning (oil- and water-repellent) applications due to their low-cost and environmentally friendly nature. Lower phase separation of polysiloxanes in coating matrix is critical to obtain excellent self-cleaning properties. We hypothesize that telechelic polysiloxanes can bind to coating matrix at both ends and thus will suppress phase separation of polysiloxane as compared to hemi-telechelic analog and thus will offer excellent self-cleaning properties.

Experiment: Eight PDMS additives were prepared via the free-radical polymerization of telechelic and hemi-telechelic methacryloxypropyl-based PDMS precursors with methylmethacrylate (MMA) and glycidylmethacrylate (GMA). The compositions of the prepared polysiloxane additives were optimized to obtain excellent self-cleaning performance.

Findings: Our breakthrough development confirms that telechelic polysiloxanes (PDMS-T) incorporated into epoxy-based anti-smudge coatings outperform hemi-telechelic polysiloxanes (PDMS-HT) by offering excellent repellency against difficult to repel liquids. These breakthrough findings will vertically advance Science and innovations in the self-cleaning field by offering robust guidelines for choosing suitable polysiloxane for self-cleaning applications.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jcis.2021.05.007DOI Listing
October 2021

Effects of coenzyme Q10 supplementation on statin-induced myopathy: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.

Ir J Med Sci 2021 May 17. Epub 2021 May 17.

Department of Cardiology, The Sir Run Run Hospital, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, China.

Background: Statins can trigger a series of muscle-related adverse events, commonly referred to collectively as statin-induced myopathy. Although coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is widely used as a supplement in statin therapy, there is little clinical evidence for this practice.

Aim: This study aims to assess the effect of adding CoQ10 on statin-induced myopathy.

Methods: Searching the PubMed, EMBASE, and the Cochrane Library databases to identify randomized controlled trials investigating the effect of adding CoQ10 on creatine kinase (CK) activity and degree of muscle pain as two indicators of statin-induced myopathy. Two reviewers will independently extract data from the included articles.

Results: Study screening included a randomized controlled trial of oral CoQ10 versus placebo in patients with statin-induced myopathy. We had a total of 8 studies in which 472 patients were treated with statins: 6 studies with 281 participants assessed the impact of adding CoQ10 on CK activity, and 4 studies with 220 participants were included to evaluate the impacts of CoQ10 addition on muscle pain. Compared with the controls, CK activity increased after adding CoQ10, but the change was not significant (mean difference, 3.29 U/L; 95% CI, - 29.58 to 36.17 U/L; P = 0.84). Similarly, the meta-analysis did not benefit CoQ10 over placebo in improving muscle pain (standardized mean difference, - 0.59; 95% CI, - 1.54 to 0.36; P = 0.22).

Conclusion: The outcomes of this meta-analysis of existing randomized controlled trials showed that supplementation with CoQ10 did not have any significant benefit in improving statin-induced myopathy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11845-021-02651-xDOI Listing
May 2021

Investigation of the relationships between sleep behaviors and risk of healthspan termination: a prospective cohort study based on 323,373 UK-Biobank participants.

Sleep Breath 2021 May 6. Epub 2021 May 6.

Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Center for Global Health, School of Public Health, Nanjing Medical University, 101 Longmian Road, Nanjing, 211166, China.

Objectives: To examine the associations between four sleep behaviors and the risk of healthspan termination.

Methods: This study included 323,373 participants, free of terminated healthspan at baseline, from the UK-Biobank (UKB). We applied multivariable-adjusted Cox regression models to estimate the risk of terminated healthspan based on four sleep behaviors (insomnia/sleeplessness, napping, daytime sleepiness, and difficulty getting up from bed), which were self-reported and measured on Likert scales from "usually" to "never/rarely" experiences. In this study, healthspan was defined based on eight events that are strongly associated with longevity (congestive heart failure, myocardial infarction, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, stroke, dementia, diabetes, cancer, and death).

Results: Participants who reported the following unhealthy sleep behaviors had a significantly higher risk of terminated healthspan: "usually experience sleeplessness/insomnia" (HR = 1.05, 95% CI: 1.03-1.07; P < 0.001); "usually nap" (HR = 1.22, 95% CI: 1.18-1.26; P < 0.01); "excessive daytime sleepiness" (HR = 1.25, 95% CI: 1.19-1.32; P < 0.001); and "difficult getting up from bed" (HR = 1.08, 95% CI: 1.05-1.10; P < 0.001). The corresponding population attributable risk percentage (PAR%) indicated that about 7% of healthspan termination in this cohort would have been eliminated if all participants had healthy sleep behaviors.

Conclusion: Participants who reported "usually experience sleeplessness/insomnia," "usually nap," "excessive daytime sleepiness," and "difficult getting up from bed" had increased risk of shortened healthspan. Therefore, adherence to healthy sleep behavior is significant for the extension of healthspan.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11325-021-02394-0DOI Listing
May 2021

Mexiletine-like cellular electrophysiological effects of GS967 in canine ventricular myocardium.

Sci Rep 2021 May 5;11(1):9565. Epub 2021 May 5.

Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Debrecen, Nagyerdei krt 98, 4012, Debrecen, Hungary.

Enhancement of the late Na current (I) increases arrhythmia propensity in the heart, while suppression of the current is antiarrhythmic. GS967 is an agent considered as a selective blocker of I. In the present study, effects of GS967 on I and action potential (AP) morphology were studied in canine ventricular myocytes by using conventional voltage clamp, action potential voltage clamp and sharp microelectrode techniques. The effects of GS967 (1 µM) were compared to those of the class I/B antiarrhythmic compound mexiletine (40 µM). Under conventional voltage clamp conditions, I was significantly suppressed by GS967 and mexiletine, causing 80.4 ± 2.2% and 59.1 ± 1.8% reduction of the densities of I measured at 50 ms of depolarization, and 79.0 ± 3.1% and 63.3 ± 2.7% reduction of the corresponding current integrals, respectively. Both drugs shifted the voltage dependence of the steady-state inactivation curve of I towards negative potentials. GS967 and mexiletine dissected inward I profiles under AP voltage clamp conditions having densities, measured at 50% of AP duration (APD), of -0.37 ± 0.07 and -0.28 ± 0.03 A/F, and current integrals of -56.7 ± 9.1 and -46.6 ± 5.5 mC/F, respectively. Drug effects on peak Na current (I) were assessed by recording the maximum velocity of AP upstroke (V) in multicellular preparations. The offset time constant was threefold faster for GS967 than mexiletine (110 ms versus 289 ms), while the onset of the rate-dependent block was slower in the case of GS967. Effects on beat-to-beat variability of APD was studied in isolated myocytes. Beat-to-beat variability was significantly decreased by both GS967 and mexiletine (reduction of 42.1 ± 6.5% and 24.6 ± 12.8%, respectively) while their shortening effect on APD was comparable. It is concluded that the electrophysiological effects of GS967 are similar to those of mexiletine, but with somewhat faster offset kinetics of V block. However, since GS967 depressed V and I at the same concentration, the current view that GS967 represents a new class of drugs that selectively block I has to be questioned and it is suggested that GS967 should be classified as a class I/B antiarrhythmic agent.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-88903-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8100105PMC
May 2021

New application of an old drug proparacaine in treating epilepsy via liposomal hydrogel formulation.

Pharmacol Res 2021 Jul 29;169:105636. Epub 2021 Apr 29.

Key Lab of Cardiovascular and Cerebrovascular Medicine, Drug Target and Drug Discovery Center, School of Pharmacy, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 211166, China; Department of Clinical Pharmacology, School of Pharmacy, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 211166, China. Electronic address:

Proparacaine (PPC) is a previously discovered topical anesthetic for ophthalmic optometry and surgery by blocking the central Nav1.3. In this study, we found that proparacaine hydrochloride (PPC-HCl) exerted an acute robust antiepileptic effect in pilocarpine-induced epilepsy mice. More importantly, chronic treatment with PPC-HCl totally terminated spontaneous recurrent seizure occurrence without significant toxicity. Chronic treatment with PPC-HCl did not cause obvious cytotoxicity, neuropsychiatric adverse effects, hepatotoxicity, cardiotoxicity, and even genotoxicity that evaluated by whole genome-scale transcriptomic analyses. Only when in a high dose (50 mg/kg), the QRS interval measured by electrocardiography was slightly prolonged, which was similar to the impact of levetiracetam. Nevertheless, to overcome this potential issue, we adopt a liposome encapsulation strategy that could alleviate cardiotoxicity and prepared a type of hydrogel containing PPC-HCl for sustained release. Implantation of thermosensitive chitosan-based hydrogel containing liposomal PPC-HCl into the subcutaneous tissue exerted immediate and long-lasting remission from spontaneous recurrent seizure in epileptic mice without affecting QRS interval. Therefore, this new liposomal hydrogel formulation of proparacaine could be developed as a transdermal patch for treating epilepsy, avoiding the severe toxicity after chronic treatment with current antiepileptic drugs in clinic.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.phrs.2021.105636DOI Listing
July 2021

Biochar Mediated-Alleviation of Chromium Stress and Growth Improvement of Different Maize Cultivars in Tannery Polluted Soils.

Int J Environ Res Public Health 2021 04 22;18(9). Epub 2021 Apr 22.

Department of Soil Science, Faculty of Agriculture and Environment, The Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Bahawalpur 63100, Pakistan.

Soil pollution with heavy metal is a serious problem across the globe and is on the rise due to the current intensification of chemical industry. The leather industry is one of them, discharging chromium (Cr) in huge quantities during the process of leather tanning and polluting the nearby land and water resources, resulting in deterioration of plant growth. In this study, the effects of biochar application at the rate of 3% were studied on four maize cultivars, namely NK-8441, P-1543, NK-8711, and FH-985, grown in two different tannery polluted Kasur (K) and Sialkot (S) soils. Maize plants were harvested at vegetative growth and results showed that Cr toxicity adversely not only affected their growth, physiology, and biochemistry, but also accumulated in their tissues. However, the level of Cr toxicity, accumulation, and its influence on maize cultivars varied greatly in both soils. In this pot experiment, biochar application played a crucial role in lessening the Cr toxicity level, resulting in significant increase in plant height, biomass (fresh and dry), leaf area, chlorophyll pigments, photosynthesis, and relative water content (RWC) over treatment set as a control. However, applied biochar significantly decreased the electrolyte leakage (EL), antioxidant enzymes, lipid peroxidation, proline content, soluble sugars, and available fraction of Cr in soil as well as Cr (VI and III) concentration in root and shoot tissues of maize plant. In addition to this, maize cultivar differences were also found in relation to their tolerance to Cr toxicity and cultivar P-1543 performed better over other cultivars in both soils. In conclusion, biochar application in tannery polluted soils could be an efficient ecofriendly approach to reduce the Cr toxicity and to promote plant health and growth.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18094461DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8122799PMC
April 2021

Processed animal manure improves morpho-physiological and biochemical characteristics of Brassica napus L. under nickel and salinity stress.

Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 2021 Apr 19. Epub 2021 Apr 19.

Hainan Key Laboratory for Sustainable Utilization of Tropical Bioresource, College of Tropical Crops, Hainan University, Haikou, 570228, Hainan, China.

Soil contamination with readily soluble salts and heavy metals is a major challenge concerning sustainable crop production. The use of organic wastes in agriculture not only helps in waste reduction but also acts as a soil conditioner and bio-stimulant for enhancing crop growth. In this regard, a pot experiment was conducted to investigate the effect of raw and processed animal manure (AM) on the growth, yield, and physicochemical parameters of Brassica napus L. developed under salinity and Ni stress. The experiment comprised two salinity levels (1.05 and 8 dS m), two Ni levels (0 and 50 mg kg), and two types of AMs (raw and processed at a rate of 2% w/w). A control treatment without AM incorporation was also included. In results, the application of AM markedly increased the growth and yield of B. napus under Ni and salinity stress; at the same time, it improved the physiological and chemical parameters of the said crop. Similarly, incorporation of processed AM significantly improved nutrient uptake and decreased Na/K ratios in the shoot and grain under the different stress conditions, as compared to the control. Likewise, Ni uptake in the grain, shoot, and root samples was also significantly reduced under the AM treatment. Also, the application of AM significantly reduced the daily intake of metal (DIM) index and the health risk index (HRI) values under the different stress conditions, as compared to the control. In conclusion, the application of processed AM constitutes an effective agricultural strategy to alleviate the adverse effects of Ni and salinity stress on growth, physiology, and yield of B. napus, thus resulting in enhanced productivity, as well as reduced risks associated with human health.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11356-021-14004-3DOI Listing
April 2021

MOLECULAR INVESTIGATION AND PHYLOGENETIC ANALYSIS OF ANAPLASMOSIS IN DOGS.

J Parasitol 2021 03;107(2):295-303

Department of Clinical Medicine and Surgery University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore, Pakistan.

Anaplasmosis is a widespread vector-borne disease affecting dogs, and Anaplasma platys is the major etiological agent of the disease. The study examines anaplasmosis molecular prevalence, related risk factors, and alteration of hematological variables in Anaplasma-affected dogs. A total of 150 blood samples were collected from dogs in the district of Lahore, Pakistan. The samples were screened with PCR targeting the 16S rRNA gene of Anaplasma. Sequencing of samples that were found positive after performing PCR was conducted. A questionnaire was developed to collect epidemiological data on subject dogs, and the information was analyzed with a logistic regression model using SPSS. The current study revealed an 11.34% (17/150) prevalence of anaplasmosis in dogs based on PCR detection. Tick infestation, previous tick history, house hygiene, and tick control status were major risk factors linked with disease occurrence. Red blood cell count, packed cell volume, hemoglobin, and platelet count were decreased significantly (P < 0.05) in Anaplasma-infected dogs. Phylogenetically, the 2 isolates of the current study clustered together, and that cluster was very similar to A. platys isolates from India, Malaysia, and Thailand.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1645/20-50DOI Listing
March 2021

A novel method for automatic pharmacological evaluation of sucrose preference change in depression mice.

Pharmacol Res 2021 Jun 8;168:105601. Epub 2021 Apr 8.

Department of Clinical Pharmacology, School of Pharmacy, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 211166, China; Key Laboratory of Cardiovascular and Cerebrovascular Medicine of Jiangsu Province, School of Pharmacy, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 211166, China; Sir Run Run Hospital, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 211166, China. Electronic address:

Sucrose preference test (SPT) is a most frequently applied method for measuring anhedonia, a core symptom of depression, in rodents. However, the method of SPT still remains problematic mainly due to the primitive, irregular, and inaccurate various types of home-made equipment in laboratories, causing imprecise, inconsistent, and variable results. To overcome this issue, we devised a novel method for automatic detection of anhedonia in mice using an electronic apparatus with its program for automated detecting the behavior of drinking of mice instead of manual weighing the water bottles. In this system, the liquid surface of the bottles was monitored electronically by infrared monitoring elements which were assembled beside the plane of the water surface and the information of times and duration of each drinking was collected to the principal machine. A corresponding computer program was written and installed in a computer connected to the principal machine for outputting and analyzing the data. This new method, based on the automated system, was sensitive, reliable, and adaptable for evaluation of stress- or drug-induced anhedonia, as well as taste preference and effects of addictive drugs. Extensive application of this automated apparatus for SPT would greatly improve and standardize the behavioral assessment method of anhedonia, being instrumental in novel antidepressant screening and depression researching.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.phrs.2021.105601DOI Listing
June 2021

Sonographic Evaluation of Incidental Synchronous Masses in Patients with Breast Cancer: Clinical Significance and Diagnostic Workup.

Eur J Breast Health 2021 Jan 24;17(1):28-35. Epub 2020 Dec 24.

Department of Breast Surgery, Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital and Research Centre, Lahore, Pakistan.

Objective: This study aimed to evaluate the diagnostic accuracy of breast ultrasonography in classifying incidental satellite masses as benign or malignant in patients with breast cancer and to assess its effect on their surgical management.

Materials And Methods: Ultrasound-guided fine needle aspiration/biopsy was performed in 288 satellite masses of 225 patients with breast cancer. Two radiologists retrospectively reviewed the sonograms of these masses and classified them as benign or malignant and compared this feature with the results of the histopathological examination. The location of the satellite mass and type of surgery were also documented.

Results: Of the 288 satellite masses, 139 were located in the same quadrant, 95 in different quadrants, while 54 were in the contralateral breast. Of the 123 sonographically benign masses, 106 showed benign pathological outcome, and from 165 sonographically malignant masses, 127 were found malignant on histopathology/cytology. McNemar's chi-square was 7.27 (p-value=0.007), showing statistically significant association between sonographic features and pathological outcome of satellite masses. The sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values, and accuracy were 88.2%, 73.6%, 77%, 86.1%, and 80.9% respectively. Based on these findings, 61 patients underwent lumpectomy limited to a single tumor, 52 underwent extended resection, 78 underwent mastectomy, four underwent lumpectomy for the contralateral breast, and bilateral mastectomies were performed in another four patients. Surgery was not performed in 26 patients.

Conclusion: Although ultrasound is an effective tool for the detection and characterization of incidental satellite masses in patients with breast cancer, biopsy is imperative to ascertain the pathological diagnosis and, therefore, select the most appropriate surgical plan.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4274/ejbh.2020.5858DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8006782PMC
January 2021

Emerging mechanisms of valproic acid-induced neurotoxic events in autism and its implications for pharmacological treatment.

Biomed Pharmacother 2021 May 16;137:111322. Epub 2021 Feb 16.

Key Lab of Cardiovascular and Cerebrovascular Medicine, Drug Target and Drug Discovery Center, School of Pharmacy, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, China; Institute of Brain Sciences, The Affiliated Nanjing Brain Hospital of Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, China. Electronic address:

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a sort of mental disorder marked by deficits in cognitive and communication abilities. To date no effective cure for this pernicious disease has been available. Valproic acid (VPA) is a broad-spectrum, antiepileptic drug, and it is also a potent teratogen. Epidemiological studies have shown that children exposed to VPA are at higher risk for ASD during the first trimester of their gestational development. Several animal and human studies have demonstrated important behavioral impairments and morphological changes in the brain following VPA treatment. However, the mechanism of VPA exposure-induced ASD remains unclear. Several factors are involved in the pathological phase of ASD, including aberrant excitation/inhibition of synaptic transmission, neuroinflammation, diminished neurogenesis, oxidative stress, etc. In this review, we aim to outline the current knowledge of the critical pathophysiological mechanisms underlying VPA exposure-induced ASD. This review will give insight toward understanding the complex nature of VPA-induced neuronal toxicity and exploring a new path toward the development of novel pharmacological treatment against ASD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biopha.2021.111322DOI Listing
May 2021

Phytotoxicity of petroleum hydrocarbons: Sources, impacts and remediation strategies.

Environ Res 2021 06 18;197:111031. Epub 2021 Mar 18.

National Engineering Laboratory for Improving Quality of Arable Land, Institute of Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing, 100081, PR China. Electronic address:

Extraction and exploration of petroleum hydrocarbons (PHs) to satisfy the rising world population's fossil fuel demand is playing havoc with human beings and other life forms by contaminating the ecosystem, particularly the soil. In the current review, we highlighted the sources of PHs contamination, factors affecting the PHs accumulation in soil, mechanisms of uptake, translocation and potential toxic effects of PHs on plants. In plants, PHs reduce the seed germination andnutrients translocation, and induce oxidative stress, disturb the plant metabolic activity and inhibit the plant physiology and morphology that ultimately reduce plant yield. Moreover, the defense strategy in plants to mitigate the PHs toxicity and other potential remediation techniques, including the use of organic manure, compost, plant hormones, and biochar, and application of microbe-assisted remediation, and phytoremediation are also discussed in the current review. These remediation strategies not only help to remediate PHs pollutionin the soil rhizosphere but also enhance the morphological and physiological attributes of plant and results to improve crop yield under PHs contaminated soils. This review aims to provide significant information on ecological importance of PHs stress in various interdisciplinary investigations and critical remediation techniques to mitigate the contamination of PHs in agricultural soils.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2021.111031DOI Listing
June 2021

Evaluation of the anti-diarrheal effects of the whole plant extracts of Roxb in pigeons.

Toxicol Rep 2021 23;8:395-404. Epub 2021 Feb 23.

Department of Chemistry, The University of Jordan, Amman, 11942, Jordan.

Background: (dodder) belonging to the family Convolvulaceae has many ethno-medicinal uses such as antidiarrheal and antiemetic. This plant has been employed to treat diarrhea, where the antidiarrheal use of this plant is well established in different communities around the world without scientific bases. In addition, the antibacterial, anthelmintic, anticholinergic, and antihistaminic effects of this parasitic vine are partly responsible for the folkloric antidiarrheal use of this plant. In the present study, the antidiarrheal activity was evaluated in pigeons () using the juice (JCR), aqueous (CRAE), and methanol (CRME) extracts.

Methods: The antidiarrheal effect of was evaluated using different reported research models, with few modifications. In pigeons, diarrhea was induced by administration of castor oil (6 mL/kg, PO), ampicillin (250 mg/kg, IP), magnesium sulfate (2 gm/kg, PO), and cisplatin (6 mg/kg, IV). In these experiments, loperamide (2 mg/kg, IM) was used as a positive control, whereas JCR (1 mL/kg (1%) and 1 mL/kg (2%), CRAE (50, 100 and 200 mg/kg) and CRME (50, 100 and 200 mg/kg) were administered intramuscularly at different doses into each pigeon in the test groups.

Results: In addition to cisplatin-induced diarrhea, all paradigms tested gave significant results ( < 0.01). The JCR, at different doses, exhibited a significant ( < 0.01) a dose-dependent antidiarrheal effect on both the frequency and the onset of diarrhea. Similarly, CRAE and CRME, at doses of 100 and 200 mg/kg, showed considerable ( < 0.001) inhibition against the onset and frequency of diarrhea. On the other hand, JCR, CRAE, and CRME exerted significant effects ( < 0.001) on the percentage inhibition (PI) of diarrhea and gastrointestinal charcoal transit in a dose-dependent manner. In this respect, the maximum PI ( < 0.01) of JCR, CRAE, and CRME in different experimental paradigms was 43.13, 49.14, and 55.99 %, respectively.

Conclusions: Taken all together, results from this study reveal that the juice, aqueous, and methanol extract of exhibit significant anti-motility and anti-secretory potential. These findings may explain the medicinal use of folk medicine as an antidiarrheal medicinal plant.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.toxrep.2021.02.013DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7921875PMC
February 2021

Remdesivir for the Treatment of COVID-19: A Need for Combined and Studies to Evaluate the Efficacy.

J Pharm Pract 2021 06 24;34(3):343-346. Epub 2021 Feb 24.

Tıbbi Farmakoloji Anabilim Dalı, 66757Tıp Fakultesi, Cukurova Universitesi, Sarıcam, Adana, Turkey.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0897190021997001DOI Listing
June 2021

Carveol a Naturally-Derived Potent and Emerging Nrf2 Activator Protects Against Acetaminophen-Induced Hepatotoxicity.

Front Pharmacol 2020 28;11:621538. Epub 2021 Jan 28.

State Key Laboratory of Oncogenomics, School of Chemical Biology and Biotechnology, Shenzhen Graduate School, Peking University, Shenzhen, China.

Acetaminophen (N-acetyl p-aminophenol or APAP) is used worldwide for its antipyretic and anti-inflammatory potential. However, APAP overdose sometimes causes severe liver damage. In this study, we elucidated the protective effects of carveol in liver injury, using molecular and approaches. Male BALB/c mice were divided into two experimental cohorts, to identify the best dose and to further assess the role of carveol in the nuclear factor E2-related factor; nuclear factor erythroid 2; p45-related factor 2 (Nrf2) pathway. The results demonstrated that carveol significantly modulated the detrimental effects of APAP by boosting endogenous antioxidant mechanisms, such as nuclear translocation of Nrf2 gene, a master regulator of the downstream antioxidant machinery. Furthermore, an inhibitor of Nrf2, called all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA), was used, which exaggerated APAP toxicity, in addition to abrogating the protective effects of carveol; this effect was accompanied by overexpression of inflammatory mediators and liver = 2ltoxicity biomarkers. To further support our notion, we performed virtual docking of carveol with Nrf2-keap1 target, and the resultant drug-protein interactions validated the findings. Together, our findings suggest that carveol could activate the endogenous master antioxidant Nrf2, which further regulates the expression of downstream antioxidants, eventually ameliorating the APAP-induced inflammation and oxidative stress.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fphar.2020.621538DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7883019PMC
January 2021

Knowledge, Attitude, and Practices (KAPs) of Community Pharmacists Regarding COVID-19: A Cross-Sectional Survey in 2 Provinces of Pakistan.

Disaster Med Public Health Prep 2021 Feb 16:1-9. Epub 2021 Feb 16.

Çukurova Üniversitesi, Tıp Fakültesi, Tıbbi Farmakoloji Anabilim Dalı, Sarıçam, Adana, Turkey.

Objective: The 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is a global pandemic with no therapy, and pharmacists being a part of the health care system have a vital role in the management of COVID-19. The purpose of this study is to assess the knowledge, attitude, and practices of community pharmacists (CPs) regarding COVID-19.

Method: An online survey was conducted among 393 CPs in 2 provinces of Pakistan during the lockdown period. A validated questionnaire (Cronbach's alpha, 0.745) was used for data collection. All statistical analyses were analyzed by using SPSS, version 21 (IBM Corp, Armonk, NY).

Results: Among 393 participants, 71.5% (n = 281) had good knowledge, 44% (n = 175) had a positive attitude, and 57.3% (n = 225) had good practices regarding COVID-19. Social media (45.29%, n = 178) were reported as the main source to seek information of COVID-19. Good knowledge, age ≥ 26 years, and a PhD degree level were the substantial determinants (P = < 0.05) of a good attitude. Similarly, a CP with experience of > 5 years, a PhD degree, good knowledge, and a good attitude has higher odds of having good practices as compared with reference categories (P = < 0.05).

Conclusion: In short, a majority of the CPs had good knowledge but had a poor attitude and practice toward the management of COVID-19. Standard-structured educational and counseling programs for CPs regarding COVID-19 are needed for effective management.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/dmp.2021.54DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8129683PMC
February 2021

Attenuation of nociceptive and paclitaxel-induced neuropathic pain by targeting inflammatory, CGRP and substance P signaling using 3-Hydroxyflavone.

Neurochem Int 2021 03 5;144:104981. Epub 2021 Feb 5.

Natural and Medical Sciences Research Center, University of Nizwa, Birkat-ul-Mouz 616, Nizwa, Oman. Electronic address:

Paclitaxel is an anti-microtubule agent, most widely used chemotherapeutic agent for the treatment of malignant solid tumors. However, it is associated with some severe side effects including painful neurotoxicity with reporting of neuropathic pain and sensory abnormalities by patients during and after paclitaxel therapy. Peripheral neuropathy was induced by the administration of paclitaxel (4 mg/kg on days 1, 3, 5, and 7). In this study, the anti-nociceptive and anti-inflammatory propensity of 3-Hydroxyflavone (3HF) in mice and the preventive effect of 3HF against paclitaxel-induced peripheral neuropathy in Sprague Dawley (SD) rats were investigated. Moreover, tactile and cold allodynia, thermal and tail immersion hyperalgesia, and effects on motor-coordination were also evaluated. Furthermore, the expression of proinflammatory cytokines i.e. Calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), and Substance P from the spinal cord was examined through RT-PCR. Additionally, a computational structural biology approach was applied to search the potential therapeutic targets and to predict the binding mechanism of 3HF. Treatment of 3HF alleviated the nociceptive pain, paw edema, development of tactile and cold allodynia, and hyperalgesia. Similarly, treatment with 3HF suppressed the paclitaxel-induced increase in mRNA expression of several inflammatory cytokines including tumor necrosis factor -α (TNF-α), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), and interleukin-6 (IL-6), CGRP, and Substance P. However, the daily treatment of 3HF did not affect the motor behaviors of rats. The inhibitory mechanism of 3HF in neuropathic pain is predicted with extensive computational bioinformatics approach which indicates that the 3HF effectively interacts with the binding domains of Nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB), CGRP receptor and the receptor of Substance P to exert its inhibitory activities. However, the computationally predicted binding affinities revealed that the potential of binding of the compound with Substance P receptor (Neurokinin 1 receptor) is higher than the other receptors; there NK1R could be the most possible binding target of 3HF. These findings indicate that 3HF has anti-nociceptive, anti-inflammatory, and anti-neuropathic pain effects against paclitaxel-induced neuropathic pain.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neuint.2021.104981DOI Listing
March 2021

Polysaccharides; Classification, Chemical Properties, and Future Perspective Applications in Fields of Pharmacology and Biological Medicine (A Review of Current Applications and Upcoming Potentialities).

J Polym Environ 2021 Jan 27:1-13. Epub 2021 Jan 27.

Department of Pharmacology and Pharmacotherapy, Faculty of Medicine, Interdisciplinary Excellence Centre, University of Szeged, Szeged, 6720 Hungary.

Polysaccharides are essential macromolecules which almost exist in all living forms, and have important biological functions, they are getting more attention because they exhibit a wide range of biological and pharmacological activities, such as anti-tumour, immunomodulatory, antimicrobial, antioxidant, anticoagulant, antidiabetic, antiviral, and hypoglycemia activities, making them one of the most promising candidates in biomedical and pharmaceutical fields. Polysaccharides can be obtained from many different sources, such as plants, microorganisms, algae, and animals. Due to their physicochemical properties, they are susceptible to physical and chemical modifications leading to enhanced properties, which is the basic concept for their diverse applications in biomedical and pharmaceutical fields. In this review, we will give insight into the most recent updated applications of polysaccharides and their potentialities as alternatives for traditional and conventional therapies. Challenges and limitations for polysaccharides in pharmaceutical utilities are discussed as well.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10924-021-02052-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7838237PMC
January 2021

Antinociceptive, Muscle Relaxant, Sedative, and Molecular Docking Studies of Peshawaraquinone Isolated from (Wall. ex G. Don) Steenis.

ACS Omega 2021 Jan 4;6(1):996-1002. Epub 2021 Jan 4.

Department of Biology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Tabuk, Tabuk 71421, Saudia Arabia.

(Wall. ex G. Don) Steenis is traditionally used to cure various diseases and can be included as an ingredient in massage oils, which are supposed to comfort muscular tension and pain. This study was designed to assess the antinociceptive, muscle relaxant, and molecular docking properties of a novel compound, namely, (5a,5a1,6,7a,14b,15)15-hydroxy-7a-methyl-6-(2-methylprop-1-en-1-yl)-7,7a,14b,15-tetrahydro-5-t-5a,15methanobenzo[g]benzo[5,6]azuleno[1,8-]chromene-5,9,14,16(5a1,6)- tetraone (peshawaraquinone), isolated from the methanolic extract of in an animal model. The chemical structure of the isolated compound was elucidated using advanced spectroscopic techniques and further confirmed by XRD analysis. Compound was tested against hot plate-induced noxious stimuli at various doses (2.5, 5, 10, and 15 mg/kg i.p.). The muscle relaxation potency of compound was evaluated in the inclined and traction test, while the open-field test was used for the determination of sedative potential. The isolated compound was also subjected to acute toxicity analysis. The compound was then subjected to molecular docking analysis to determine the exact mechanism of action. Compound demonstrated significant ( < 0.05) analgesic effect in a dose-dependent manner. A noticeable muscle relaxant effect was observed with the passage of time in both experimental models. The compound showed a significant ( < 0.05) sedative effect, and in an acute toxicity study, the compound was devoid of any noxious effects. The docking studies showed preferential affinity for μ-opioid and GABAA receptors. Hence, the prospective antinociceptive and muscle relaxant and sedative properties are probably mediated through these two target interactions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsomega.0c05720DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7808132PMC
January 2021

Therapeutic approach for global myocardial injury using bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells by cardiac support device in rats.

Biomed Microdevices 2021 01 8;23(1). Epub 2021 Jan 8.

Department of Clinical Pharmacy, School of Basic Medicine and Clinical Pharmacy, China Pharmaceutical University, School of Pharmacy, Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, 211198, People's Republic of China.

Bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) have been considered a promising therapeutic approach to cardiovascular disease. This study intends to compare the effect of BMSCs through a standard active cardiac support device (ASD) and intravenous injection on global myocardial injury induced by isoproterenol. BMSCs were cultured in vitro, and the transplanted cells were labeled with a fluorescent dye CM-Dil. Isoproterenol (ISO) was injected into the rats; 2 weeks later, the labeled cells were transplanted into ISO-induced heart-jury rats through the tail vein or ASD device for 5 days. The rats were sacrificed on the first day, the third day, and the fifth day after transplantation to observe the distribution of cells in the myocardium by fluorescence microscopy. The hemodynamic indexes of the left ventricle were measured before sacrificing. H&E staining and Masson's trichrome staining were used to evaluate the cardiac histopathology. In the ASD groups, after 3 days of transplantation, there were a large number of BMSCs on the epicardial surface, and after 5 days of transplantation, BMSCs were widely distributed in the ventricular muscle. But in the intravenous injection group, there were no labeled-BMSCs distributed. In the ASD + BMSCs-three days treated group and ASD + BMSCs -five days-treated group, left ventricular systolic pressure (LVSP), the maximum rate of left ventricular pressure rise (+dP/dt), the maximum rate of left ventricular pressure decline (-dP/dt) increased compared with model group and intravenous injection group (P < 0.05). By giving BMSCs through ASD device, cells can rapidly and widely distribute in the myocardium and significantly improve heart function.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10544-020-00538-9DOI Listing
January 2021

A Survey of End-to-End Driving: Architectures and Training Methods.

IEEE Trans Neural Netw Learn Syst 2020 Dec 29;PP. Epub 2020 Dec 29.

Autonomous driving is of great interest to industry and academia alike. The use of machine learning approaches for autonomous driving has long been studied, but mostly in the context of perception. In this article, we take a deeper look on the so-called end-to-end approaches for autonomous driving, where the entire driving pipeline is replaced with a single neural network. We review the learning methods, input and output modalities, network architectures, and evaluation schemes in end-to-end driving literature. Interpretability and safety are discussed separately, as they remain challenging for this approach. Beyond providing a comprehensive overview of existing methods, we conclude the review with an architecture that combines the most promising elements of the end-to-end autonomous driving systems.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/TNNLS.2020.3043505DOI Listing
December 2020

Mitigation of Nickel Toxicity and Growth Promotion in Sesame through the Application of a Bacterial Endophyte and Zeolite in Nickel Contaminated Soil.

Int J Environ Res Public Health 2020 11 28;17(23). Epub 2020 Nov 28.

Department of Botany and Microbiology, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia.

Nickel (Ni) bioavailable fraction in the soil is of utmost importance because of its involvement in plant growth and environmental feedbacks. High concentrations of Ni in the soil environment, especially in the root zone, may retard plant growth that ultimately results in reduced plant biomass and yield. However, endophytic microorganisms have great potential to reduce the toxicity of Ni, especially when applied together with zeolite. The present research work was conducted to evaluate the potential effects of an endophytic bacterium sp. MN13 in combination with zeolite on the physiology, growth, quality, and yield of sesame plant under normal and Ni stressed soil conditions through possible reduction of Ni uptake. Surface sterilized sesame seeds were sown in pots filled with artificially Ni contaminated soil amended with zeolite. Results revealed that plant agronomic attributes such as shoot root dry weight, total number of pods, and 1000-grains weight were increased by 41, 45, 54, and 65%, respectively, over control treatment, with combined application of bacteria and zeolite in Ni contaminated soil. In comparison to control, the gaseous exchange parameters (CO assimilation rate, transpiration rate, stomatal- sub-stomatal conductance, chlorophyll content, and vapor pressure) were significantly enhanced by co-application of bacteria and zeolite ranging from 20 to 49% under Ni stress. Moreover, the combined utilization of bacteria and zeolite considerably improved water relations of sesame plant, in terms of relative water content (RWC) and relative membrane permeability (RMP) along with improvement in biochemical components (protein, ash, crude fiber, fat), and micronutrients in normal as well as in Ni contaminated soil. Moreover, the same treatment modulated the Ni-stress in plants through improvement in antioxidant enzymes (AEs) activities along with improved Ni concentration in the soil and different plant tissues. Correlation and principal component analysis (PCA) further revealed that combined application of metal-tolerant bacterium sp. MN13 and zeolite is the most influential strategy in alleviating Ni-induced stress and subsequent improvement in growth, yield, and physio-biochemical attributes of sesame plant.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17238859DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7730600PMC
November 2020

Biotechnological approaches to the production of plant-derived promising anticancer agents: An update and overview.

Biomed Pharmacother 2020 Dec 1;132:110918. Epub 2020 Nov 1.

Department of Human Anatomy, Medical College of Qinghai University, Xining, 810000,P.R China. Electronic address:

The plant kingdom is a rich source of bioactive compounds, many of which have been used since pre-history for their therapeutic properties to treat a range of illnesses. These metabolites have recently attracted attention to their antineoplastic activities to treat various cancers relying on different mechanisms. Some of these molecules are glycosides, which have proven useful as anti-cancer agents, namely podophyllotoxin (PPT) anaryltetralin lignan or alkaloids. There are three primary forms of alkaloids, such as indole alkaloids (vincristine and vinblastine from Catharanthus roseus), quinoline alkaloid (camptothecin from Camptotheca acuminata), and diterpenoid alkaloid (taxol and it's analogous from Taxus and Corylus species). This review considers various plant biotechnology approaches used to enhance the production of these anticancer molecules in different species. In this regard, many in vitro culture techniques such as stimulation of suspension culture and hairy roots are being used to investigate the effects of plant growth regulators and elicitors on various explants.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biopha.2020.110918DOI Listing
December 2020

Modeling the effect of delay strategy on transmission dynamics of HIV/AIDS disease.

Adv Differ Equ 2020 25;2020(1):663. Epub 2020 Nov 25.

Department of Mathematics, Air University, Islamabad, Pakistan.

In this manuscript, we investigate a nonlinear delayed model to study the dynamics of human-immunodeficiency-virus in the population. For analysis, we find the equilibria of a susceptible-infectious-immune system with a delay term. The well-established tools such as the Routh-Hurwitz criterion, Volterra-Lyapunov function, and Lasalle invariance principle are presented to investigate the stability of the model. The reproduction number and sensitivity of parameters are investigated. If the delay tactics are decreased, then the disease is endemic. On the other hand, if the delay tactics are increased then the disease is controlled in the population. The effect of the delay tactics with subpopulations is investigated. More precisely, all parameters are dependent on delay terms. In the end, to give the strength to a theoretical analysis of the model, a computer simulation is presented.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13662-020-03116-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7686949PMC
November 2020

Performance of Zea mays L. cultivars in tannery polluted soils: Management of chromium phytotoxicity through the application of biochar and compost.

Physiol Plant 2020 Nov 20. Epub 2020 Nov 20.

Department of Botany and Microbiology, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Soil contamination with heavy metals caused by various industrial activities is a threatening global environmental issue of the current era. Chromium (Cr) is the most toxic heavy metal used in leather industry and disposal of untreated wastewater into natural water bodies leads to contamination of natural soil and water resources. We studied the combined effect of biochar and compost on improving the tolerance to Cr toxicity by enhancing the morpho-physiological and biochemical attributes of two maize cultivars (P-1543 and NK-8441) grown in tannery waste polluted soils. The results of this study reveal that Cr toxicity reduced the plant growth by affecting physiological and biochemical attributes. Here, compost and biochar application significantly increased the plant biomass (fresh and dry), height, photosynthesis, chlorophyll content, water relation, starch, and protein content over treatment set as control. However, significant decline in electrolyte leakage (EL), proline, lipid peroxidation, soluble sugars, and antioxidant enzymes (APX, GPX, GR, GST, GSH, SOD, and CAT) was observed by combined application of compost and biochar. Hexavalent chromium concentration was maximum decreased to 4.1 μg g in soil after post-harvesting of maize cultivar NK-8441, while in roots and shoots to 22.6 and 19.2 μg g of maize cultivar P-1543, respectively, by combined application of compost and biochar. Moreover, these both amendments in combination showed considerably better results than their sole application and cultivar P-1543 comparatively performed better than NK 8441, in both K and S soils. Correlation and principal component analysis (PCA) revealed mostly highly positive associations among all the studied morpho, physio, and biochemical attributes of maize plant with the few exceptions, particularly concentration of Cr(III) and Cr(VI) in soil. The present work concluded that combined use of biochar and compost has great potential to decrease Cr toxicity and improve plant growth in tannery polluted soils.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ppl.13277DOI Listing
November 2020