Publications by authors named "Shaojun Li"

97 Publications

ERK/Drp1-dependent mitochondrial fission contributes to HMGB1-induced autophagy in pulmonary arterial hypertension.

Cell Prolif 2021 May 4:e13048. Epub 2021 May 4.

Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, the First Affiliated Hospital of Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an, Shaanxi, China.

Objectives: High-mobility group box-1 (HMGB1) and aberrant mitochondrial fission mediated by excessive activation of GTPase dynamin-related protein 1 (Drp1) have been found to be elevated in patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) and critically implicated in PAH pathogenesis. However, it remains unknown whether Drp1-mediated mitochondrial fission and which downstream targets of mitochondrial fission mediate HMGB1-induced pulmonary arterial smooth muscle cells (PASMCs) proliferation and migration leading to vascular remodelling in PAH. This study aims to address these issues.

Methods: Primary cultured PASMCs were obtained from male Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats. We detected RNA levels by qRT-PCR, protein levels by Western blotting, cell proliferation by Cell Counting Kit-8 (CCK-8) and EdU incorporation assays, migration by wound healing and transwell assays. SD rats were injected with monocrotaline (MCT) to establish PAH. Hemodynamic parameters were measured by closed-chest right heart catheterization.

Results: HMGB1 increased Drp1 phosphorylation and Drp1-dependent mitochondrial fragmentation through extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1/2 (ERK1/2) signalling activation, and subsequently triggered autophagy activation, which further led to bone morphogenetic protein receptor 2 (BMPR2) lysosomal degradation and inhibitor of DNA binding 1 (Id1) downregulation, and eventually promoted PASMCs proliferation/migration. Inhibition of ERK1/2 cascade, knockdown of Drp1 or suppression of autophagy restored HMGB1-induced reductions of BMPR2 and Id1, and diminished HMGB1-induced PASMCs proliferation/migration. In addition, pharmacological inhibition of HMGB1 by glycyrrhizin, suppression of mitochondrial fission by Mdivi-1 or blockage of autophagy by chloroquine prevented PAH development in MCT-induced rats PAH model.

Conclusions: HMGB1 promotes PASMCs proliferation/migration and pulmonary vascular remodelling by activating ERK1/2/Drp1/Autophagy/BMPR2/Id1 axis, suggesting that this cascade might be a potential novel target for management of PAH.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/cpr.13048DOI Listing
May 2021

Membrane-Bound Transcriptional Activator NTL1 from Rapeseed Positively Modulates Leaf Senescence through Targeting Genes Involved in Reactive Oxygen Species Production and Programmed Cell Death.

J Agric Food Chem 2021 May 20;69(17):4968-4980. Epub 2021 Apr 20.

State Key Laboratory of Crop Stress Biology for Arid Areas and, College of Life Sciences, Northwest A & F University, Yangling, Shaanxi 712100, China.

Leaf senescence is the last stage of leaf development and is determined by various environmental and endogenous signals. Leaf senescence can determine plant productivity and fitness. Transcription factors (TFs) with the transmembrane domain constitute a special group of regulatory proteins that can translocate from the membrane system into nuclei to exert the transcriptional function upon endogenous or exogenous stimuli. Reactive oxygen species (ROSs) play an important role in numerous processes throughout the life cycle of plants including leaf senescence. Leaf senescence is characterized by massive programmed cell death (PCD) and is a type of developmental PCD. The transcriptional regulatory relationships between membrane-bound TFs and leaf senescence remain largely uncharacterized, especially in rapeseed ( L.), an important oil crop. Here, we show that BnaNTL1 is a membrane-bound NAC (NAM, ATAF, and CUC) TF, which is predominantly expressed in senescent leaves. Expression of , a form of BnaNTL1 devoid of the transmembrane domain, can induce serious HR-like cell death symptoms and ROS accumulation in cells. Plants overexpressing show earlier leaf senescence compared with the control, accompanied by chlorophyll degradation and electrolyte leakage. Genes involved in ROS production (), PCD ( and ), and leaf senescence () are significantly induced and activated by BnaNTL1ΔTM according to the quantitative reverse transcription PCR (qRT-PCR) analysis and dual luciferase reporter (Dual-LUC) assay. Moreover, electrophoretic mobility shift assay revealed that BnaNTL1 directly bound to the NTLBS elements in promoters of , , and . In conclusion, these results demonstrate that BnaNTL1 positively modulates ROS production and HR-like cell death to induce leaf senescence.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jafc.1c00182DOI Listing
May 2021

Therapeutic of Candesartan and Music Therapy in Diabetic Retinopathy with Depression in Rats.

Evid Based Complement Alternat Med 2021 26;2021:5570356. Epub 2021 Mar 26.

Department of Ophthalmology, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Nanchang University, Nanchang 330006, China.

This study aimed to investigate the therapeutic effects of candesartan combined with music therapy on diabetic retinopathy with depression and to assess the molecular mechanisms. Associated animal model of diabetes mellitus and depression was established in rats. Pathological changes in the hippocampus were detected by haematoxylin eosin (H&E) staining. Terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick-end labeling (TUNEL) was used to detect retinal cell apoptosis. Angiotensin II (Ang II) in peripheral blood and neurotransmitters, including serotonin (5-HT), dopamine (DA), and norepinephrine (NE) in the hippocampus, was measured by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Fluorescence quantitative PCR and western blotting were used to detect the expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and c-fos in the hippocampus. Our data showed that chromatin aggregation and cytoplasmic vacuolation were observable in the hippocampal cells of the rats in the model group, while candesartan and music therapy could reduce morphological changes in the hippocampus of diabetic rats with depression. Compared with the control group, the apoptosis of retinal cells was significantly higher, the contents of 5-HT, DA, and NE in the hippocampus were significantly lower, Ang II level in peripheral blood was significantly higher, and the expression of BDNF and c-fos in the hippocampus decreased significantly in the model group. By contrast, candesartan or candesartan + music therapy ameliorated the changes in retina cell apoptosis, reduction of neurotransmitters, increase in AII, and the expression of c-fos and BDNF. Especially, music therapy further improved the effects of candesartan on retina cell apoptosis and neurotransmitter release in diabetic retinopathy rats with depression. In conclusion, candesartan and music therapy have an additive effect in DM with both visual impairment and depression, which might serve a potential alternative treatment for this complex disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2021/5570356DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8018856PMC
March 2021

Determinants of ICS therapy adherence in patients with asthma.

Am J Manag Care 2021 02 1;27(2):e36-e41. Epub 2021 Feb 1.

Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Xi'an Jiaotong University, No. 277, West Yanta Rd, Xi'an, Shaanxi, 710061, China.

Objectives: This study aimed to evaluate factors affecting adherence to inhaled therapy in patients with asthma to further identify the determinants most closely associated with adherence to inhaled therapy for asthma, especially inhaled glucocorticosteroids (ICS).

Study Design: A 2-stage study was conducted. In stage 1, we performed nonassumptive deep-dive qualitative scoping to investigate the determinants of poor adherence in patients with asthma, and in stage 2 we developed a new questionnaire for cross-sectional surveys to obtain more accurate information about critical issues related to asthma management.

Methods: Patients with asthma who were 18 years and older in the outpatient clinic of The First Affiliated Hospital of Xi'an Jiaotong University from November 2016 to January 2018 were investigated.

Results: In the 350 patients with asthma recruited, 32% of patients showed good adherence, whereas 68% of patients displayed poor adherence to inhaled therapy due to various reasons. Further analysis indicated that inadequate understanding of asthma treatment and control, poor self-management, financial burden, adverse reactions, and the fear of potential adverse reactions were significant independent risk factors for poor ICS inhalation adherence in patients with asthma.

Conclusions: Our research shows that many patients with asthma in western China have poor disease control and poor inhalation therapy adherence. We hope this research can alert clinicians and help them identify patients who may be experiencing uncontrolled asthma due to poor adherence to inhaled therapy, and we suggest that clinicians help those patients obtain appropriate information about asthma control and self-management.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.37765/ajmc.2021.88587DOI Listing
February 2021

Berberine improves dietary-induced cardiac remodeling by upregulating Kruppel-like factor 4-dependent mitochondrial function.

Biol Chem 2021 May 5. Epub 2021 May 5.

Department of Cardiology, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University, 246 Xuefu Road, Harbin150001, Heilongjiang Province, China.

Multiple studies have showed that berberine protects against heart diseases, including obesity-associated cardiomyopathy. However, it is not fully disclosed the potential molecular mechanisms of berberine on controlling cardiac remodeling. Kruppel-like factor (KLF) 4, identified as a critical transcriptional factor, participates in multiple cardiac injuries. The present study was to explore whether KLF4 determined the cardioprotective benefits of berberine in dietary-induced obese mice. High fat diet-induced obese mice were treated with berberine with or without lentivirus encoding siRNA, and cardiac parameters were analyzed by multiple biological approaches. In dietary-induced obese mouse model, administration of berberine obviously increased cardiac level of KLF4, which closely correlated with improvement of cardiac functional parameters. Co-treatment of lentivirus encoding siRNA abolished cardioprotective benefits of berberine, including induction of cardiac hypertrophy, fibrosis, functional disorders, inflammatory response and oxidative stress. Mechanistically, we found berberine improved cardiac mitochondrial biogenesis and activities, whereas silencing decreased berberine-upregulated mitochondrial quality, ATP production and oxygen consumption. Our present study demonstrated that berberine protected against dietary-induced cardiac structural disorders and mitochondrial dysfunction dependent on cardiac KLF4 signaling. Cardiac KLF4 was one of potential therapeutic targets for obesity-induced cardiac injuries.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1515/hsz-2020-0267DOI Listing
May 2021

Sodium P-aminosalicylic Acid Attenuates Manganese-Induced Neuroinflammation in BV2 Microglia by Modulating NF-κB Pathway.

Biol Trace Elem Res 2021 Jan 14. Epub 2021 Jan 14.

Department of Toxicology, School of Public Health, Guangxi Medical University, Shuang-yong Road No.22, Nanning, 530021, Guangxi, China.

Exposure to high levels of manganese (Mn) leads to brain Mn accumulation, and a disease referred to as manganism. Activation of microglia plays an important role in Mn-induced neuroinflammation. Sodium p-aminosalicylic acid (PAS-Na) is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug that inhibits Mn-induced neuroinflammation. The aim of the current study was to explore the role of NF-κB in the protective mechanism of PAS-Na on Mn-induced neuroinflammation in BV2 microglial experimental model. We treated BV2 microglia with 200 μM Mn for 24 h followed by 48 h treatment with graded concentrations of PAS-Na, using an NF-kB inhibitor, JSH-23, as a positive control. MTT results established that 200 and 400 μM PAS-Na treatment increased the Mn-induced cell viability reduction. NF-κB (P65) mRNA expression and the phosphorylation of p65 were increased in Mn-treated BV2 cell, and suppressed by PAS-Na, analogous to the effect of JSH-23 pretreatment. Furthermore, PAS-Na significantly reduced the contents of the inflammatory cytokine TNF-α and IL-1β, both of which were increased by Mn treatment. The current results show that PAS-Na attenuated Mn-induced inflammation by abrogating the activation of the NF-κB signaling pathways and reduced the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12011-021-02581-wDOI Listing
January 2021

Decreased expression of adenosine receptor 2B confers cardiac protection against ischemia via restoring autophagic flux.

Am J Transl Res 2020 15;12(12):7995-8006. Epub 2020 Dec 15.

Department of Cardiology, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University Harbin, Heilongjiang, P. R. China.

Adora2B (adenosine receptor 2B) has been reported as one of the key modulators during cardiac remodeling after acute myocardial infarction (AMI). However, the molecular mechanism involved has not been well investigated. Thus, our study aims to investigate whether Adora2B contributes to cardiac remodeling after AMI and its underlying mechanisms. Adenovirus harboring Adora2B or shAdora2B was injected in the border zone in a mouse model of AMI experimentally produced by permanent ligation of left anterior descending (LAD) coronary artery. Decreased Adora2B expression protected the cardiomyocytes from MI-induced autophagic flux obstacle, improved cardiac function, and reduced fibrosis after MI. Adora2B downregulation attenuated the accumulation of LC3-II and p62, which are autophagy substrate proteins. An adenovirus containing mRFP-GFP-LC3 showed that decreased expression of Adora2B restored the autophagic flux by enhancing autophagosome conversion to autophagolysosome. Also, Adora2B knockdown improved cardiomyocytes' survival and protected mitochondrial function of cardiomyocytes insulted with hypoxia. Notably, the effect of Adora2B on autophagy flux and cardiomyocyte protection could be mitigated by autophagy inhibitor chloroquine. Our results demonstrate that decreased expression of Adora2B protected cardiomyocytes from impaired autophagy flux induced by MI. Modulation Adora2B expression plays a significant role in blunting the worsening of heart function and reducing scar formation, suggesting therapeutic potential by targeting Adora2B in AMI for the infarct healing.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7791490PMC
December 2020

Activation of yes-associated protein mediates sphingosine-1-phosphate-induced proliferation and migration of pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells and its potential mechanisms.

J Cell Physiol 2021 Jun 7;236(6):4694-4708. Epub 2020 Dec 7.

Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an, Shaanxi, P. R. China.

The aims of the present study were to examine the molecular mechanisms underlying sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P)-induced rat pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells (PASMCs) proliferation/migration and to determine the effect of yes-associated protein (YAP) activation on S1P-induced PASMCs proliferation/migration and its potential mechanisms. S1P induced YAP dephosphorylation and nuclear translocation, upregulated microRNA-130a/b (miR-130a/b) expression, reduced bone morphogenetic protein receptor 2 (BMPR2), and inhibitor of DNA binding 1(Id1) expression, and promoted PASMCs proliferation and migration. Pretreatment of cells with Rho-associated protein kinase (ROCK) inhibitor Y27632 suppressed S1P-induced YAP activation, miR-130a/b upregulation, BMPR2/Id1 downregulation, and PASMCs proliferation/migration. Knockdown of YAP using small interfering RNA also suppressed S1P-induced alterations of miR-130a/b, BMPR2, Id1, and PASMCs behavior. In addition, luciferase reporter assay indicated that miR-130a/b directly regulated BMPR2 expression in PASMCs. Inhibition of miR-130a/b functions by anti-miRNA oligonucleotides attenuated S1P-induced BMPR2/Id1 downregulation and the proliferation and migration of PASMCs. Taken together, our study indicates that S1P induces activation of YAP through ROCK signaling and subsequently increases miR-130a/b expression, which, in turn, downregulates BMPR2 and Id1 leading to PASMCs proliferation and migration.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jcp.30193DOI Listing
June 2021

Sodium para-aminosalicylic acid inhibits manganese-induced NLRP3 inflammasome-dependent pyroptosis by inhibiting NF-κB pathway activation and oxidative stress.

J Neuroinflammation 2020 Nov 17;17(1):343. Epub 2020 Nov 17.

Department of Toxicology, School of Public Health, Guangxi Medical University, Shuang-yong Road No.22, Nanning, 530021, Guangxi, China.

Background: The activation of NOD-like receptor protein 3 (NLRP3) inflammasome-dependent pyroptosis has been shown to play a vital role in the pathology of manganese (Mn)-induced neurotoxicity. Sodium para-aminosalicylic acid (PAS-Na) has a positive effect on the treatment of manganism. However, the mechanism is still unclear. We hypothesized that PAS-Na might act through NLRP3.

Methods: The microglial cell line BV2 and male Sprague-Dawley rats were used to investigate the impacts of PAS-Na on Mn-induced NLRP3 inflammasome-dependent pyroptosis. The related protein of the NF-κB pathway and NLRP3-inflammasome-dependent pyroptosis was detected by western blot. The reactive oxygen species and mitochondrial membrane potential were detected by immunofluorescence staining and flow cytometry. The activation of microglia and the gasdermin D (GSDMD) were detected by immunofluorescence staining.

Results: Our results showed that Mn treatment induced oxidative stress and activated the NF-κB pathway by increasing the phosphorylation of p65 and IkB-α in BV2 cells and in the basal ganglia of rats. PAS-Na could alleviate Mn-induced oxidative stress damage by inhibiting ROS generation, increasing mitochondrial membrane potential and ATP levels, thereby reducing the phosphorylation of p65 and IkB-α. Besides, Mn treatment could activate the NLRP3 pathway and promote the secretion of IL-18 and IL-1β, mediating pyroptosis in BV2 cells and in the basal ganglia and hippocampus of rats. But an inhibitor of NF-κb (JSH-23) treatment could significantly reduce LDH release, the expression of NLRP3 and Cleaved CASP1 protein and IL-1β and IL-18 mRNA level in BV2 cells. Interestingly, the effect of PAS-Na treatment in Mn-treated BV2 cells is similar to those of JSH-23. Besides, immunofluorescence results showed that PAS-Na reduced the increase number of activated microglia, which stained positively for GSDMD.

Conclusion: PAS-Na antagonized Mn-induced NLRP3 inflammasome dependent pyroptosis through inhibiting NF-κB pathway activation and oxidative stress.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12974-020-02018-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7670624PMC
November 2020

Sodium P-aminosalicylic Acid Inhibits Manganese-Induced Neuroinflammation in BV2 Microglial Cells via NLRP3-CASP1 Inflammasome Pathway.

Biol Trace Elem Res 2020 Nov 6. Epub 2020 Nov 6.

Department of Toxicology, School of Public Health, Guangxi Medical University, No. 22, Shuang-yong Rd, Nanning, 530021, Guangxi, China.

Background: Sodium p-aminosalicylic acid (PAS-Na) was reported to exhibit anti-inflammatory effect in the nervous system. However, the mechanism by which PAS-Na exhibits anti-inflammatory effects on manganese (Mn)-stimulated BV2 microglia cells remains unclear. Thus, this study investigated the role of PAS-Na in Mn-stimulated BV2 microglial cells.

Methods: Microglia-like BV2 were treated with MnCl with or without the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug PAS-Na for 12 or 24 h to examine cell viability using MTT; for 24 or 48 h to examine levels of NLRP3, CASP1, IL-1β, and IL-18 mRNA using Real-Time quantitative PCR; for 48 h to examine levels of NLRP3 and CASP1 inflammasomes, measured by western blot analysis; and for 48 h to examine levels of inflammatory cytokines, measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.

Results: The MTT assay showed that PAS-Na produced significant neuroprotective effect by preventing Mn-induced inflammation in BV2 microglial cells. PAS-Na significantly concentration and time dependently inhibited Mn-induced production of NLRP3, CASP1, IL-1β, and IL-18.

Conclusion: Taken together, our results suggest that PAS-Na exerts anti-inflammatory effects in Mn-stimulated BV2 microglial cells via downregulation of NLRP3, CASP1, IL-1β, and I L-18. Furthermore, a high concentration and prolonged PAS-Na treatment appear necessary for its therapeutic efficacy. Taken together, we conclude that PAS-Na affords therapeutic efficacy in mitigating neurological conditions associated with neuroinflammation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12011-020-02471-7DOI Listing
November 2020

Activation of AMPK suppresses S1P-induced airway smooth muscle cells proliferation and its potential mechanisms.

Mol Immunol 2020 12 22;128:106-115. Epub 2020 Oct 22.

Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an, Shaanxi, China. Electronic address:

The aims of the present study were to investigate the signaling mechanisms for sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P)-induced airway smooth muscle cells (ASMCs) proliferation and to explore the effect of activation of adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK) on S1P-induced ASMCs proliferation and its underlying mechanisms. S1P phosphorylated signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) through binding to S1PR, and this further sequentially up-regulated polo-like kinase 1 (PLK1) and inhibitor of differentiation 2 (ID2) protein expression. Pretreatment of cells with S1PR antagonist JTE-013, S1PR antagonist CAY-10444, knockdown of STAT3, PLK1 and ID2 attenuated S1P-triggered ASMCs proliferation. In addition, activation of AMPK by metformin inhibited S1P-induced ASMCs proliferation by suppressing STAT3 phosphorylation and therefore suppression of PLK1 and ID2 protein expression. Our study suggests that S1P promotes ASMCs proliferation by stimulating S1PR/STAT3/PLK1/ID2 axis, and activation of AMPK suppresses ASMCs proliferation by targeting on STAT3 signaling pathway. Activation of AMPK might benefit asthma by inhibiting airway remodeling.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.molimm.2020.09.020DOI Listing
December 2020

Sphingosine-1-phosphate promotes pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells proliferation by stimulating autophagy-mediated E-cadherin/CDH1 down-regulation.

Eur J Pharmacol 2020 Oct 11;884:173302. Epub 2020 Jul 11.

Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an, Shaanxi, 710061, PR China. Electronic address:

It has been shown that sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) is elevated in patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) and promotes the proliferation of pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells (PASMCs). Meanwhile, S1P has been found to induce the activation of autophagy in several types of human diseases including cancers. However, it is still unclear whether activation of autophagy mediates S1P-induced PASMCs proliferation, and detailed mechanisms responsible for these processes are indefinite. The aims of this study are to address these issues. S1P dose- and time-dependently reduced the expression of E-cadherin/CDH1 and stimulated PASMCs proliferation; this was accompanied with the elevation of TNF receptor-associated factor 2 (TRAF2), up-regulation and ubiquitination of BECN1 and the activation of autophagy. Prior silencing TRAF2 or BECN1 using siRNA or pre-incubation of cells with autophagy inhibitor chloroquine phosphate (CQ) suppressed S1P-induced autophagy activation and subsequent CDH1 degradation and further PASMCs proliferation. Taken together, our study indicates that S1P promotes the activation of autophagy by accelerating TRAF2-mediated BECN1 up-regulation and ubiquitination, which in turn results in CDH1 reduction and contributes to PASMCs proliferation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejphar.2020.173302DOI Listing
October 2020

TRIF/miR-34a mediates aldosterone-induced cardiac inflammation and remodeling.

Clin Sci (Lond) 2020 06;134(12):1319-1331

Department of Cardiology, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University, Harbin 150086, China.

Aldosterone, as a major product of renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS), determines multiple pathophysiological processes in cardiovascular diseases. The excess inflammatory response is one of the key profiles in aldosterone-mediated cardiac remodeling. However, the potential mechanisms of aldosterone/inflammatory signaling were still not fully disclosed. The present study aimed to investigate whether TIR-domain-containing adapter-inducing interferon-β (Trif) participated in the aldosterone-induced cardiac remodeling, and to explore potential molecular mechanisms. Trif knockout mice and their littermates were osmotically administrated with aldosterone (50 μg/kg per day) for 21 and 42 days. The cardiac structural analysis, functional parameters, and mitochondrial function were measured. Aldosterone dose- or time-dependently increased the levels of TRIF in primary mouse cardiomyocytes or mouse heart tissues. Trif deficiency protected against aldosterone-induced cardiac hypertrophy, fibrosis and dysfunction. Moreover, Trif deficiency also suppressed aldosterone-induced cardiac inflammatory response and mitochondrial injuries. Mechanistically, overexpression of cardiac microRNAs (miR)-34a reversed the cardiac benefits of Trif deficiency in aldosterone-treated mice. Taken together, Trif/miR-34a axis could provide a novel molecular mechanism for explaining aldosterone-induced cardiac hypertrophy, fibrosis and functional disorders.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1042/CS20200249DOI Listing
June 2020

Cubic-like PtCuRu Nanocrystals with High Activity and Stability for Methanol Electro-oxidation.

Langmuir 2020 Jul 19;36(26):7602-7608. Epub 2020 Jun 19.

College of Chemistry and Materials Engineering, Anhui Science and Technology University, Bengbu 233030, China.

Porous cubic-like PtCu and PtCuRu nanocrystals, which had a similar porous three-dimensional structure, were successfully prepared via the one-pot method. During the growth of the nanocrystals, cetyltrimethylammonium chloride and ascorbic acid were employed as the structure director and assistant reducing agent, respectively. The structure and possible formation of the nanocrystals were investigated. It is worth mentioning that the PtCuRu nanocrystals demonstrated a much better methanol electro-oxidation ability and ultrahigh stability, which displayed 3.4- and 3-fold higher specific and mass activity, respectively, than the commercial Pt/C. The advantage of PtCuRu nanocrystals was possibly ascribed to the synergistic effect of Cu and the porous structure and, more importantly, the presence of Ru that could more efficiently eliminate the harmful intermediates.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.langmuir.0c01208DOI Listing
July 2020

Prednisolone/prednisone as adrenocorticotropic hormone alternative for infantile spasms: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.

Dev Med Child Neurol 2020 05 5;62(5):575-580. Epub 2020 Jan 5.

Ministry of Education Key Laboratory of Child Development and Disorders, Children's Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, China.

Aim: To compare the efficacy and safety of prednisolone/prednisone and adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) in the treatment of infantile spasms using a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs).

Method: In a systematic literature search of electronic databases (MEDLINE, Embase, the Cochrane Library), we identified RCTs that assessed prednisolone/prednisone compared with ACTH/tetracosactide in patients with infantile spasms. The electroclinical response and adverse events were evaluated.

Results: Six RCTs (616 participants) were included in the meta-analysis. Compared with prednisolone/prednisone, ACTH/tetracosactide was not superior in terms of cessation of spasms at day 14 (relative risk 1.19, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.74-1.92), day 42 (relative risk 1.02, 95% CI 0.63-1.65), and resolution of hypsarrhythmia on electroencephalogram (relative risk 1.14, 95% CI 0.71-1.81); the incidences of common adverse reactions caused by ACTH/tetracosactide were not lower than that of prednisolone/prednisone for irritability (relative risk 0.79, 95% CI 0.57-1.10), increased appetite (relative risk 0.78, 95% CI 0.57-1.08), weight gain (relative risk 0.86, 95% CI 0.56-1.32), and gastrointestinal upset (relative risk 0.60, 95% CI 0.35-1.02), though it seemed less frequent.

Interpretation: Prednisolone/prednisone elicits a similar electroclinical response as ACTH for infantile spasms, which indicates that it can be an alternative to ACTH for treating infantile spasms. What this paper adds Prednisolone/prednisone is as effective as adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) in electroclinical response of infantile spasms. Prednisolone/prednisone and ACTH cause similar and tolerable adverse effects, whose incidences are comparable. High-dose prednisone/prednisolone might be preferable to low dose for achieving freedom from spasms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/dmcn.14452DOI Listing
May 2020

Leukotriene B induces proliferation of rat pulmonary arterial smooth muscle cells via modulating GSK-3β/β-catenin pathway.

Eur J Pharmacol 2020 Jan 23;867:172823. Epub 2019 Nov 23.

Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an, 710061, PR China. Electronic address:

Leukotriene B (LTB) has been found to contribute to pulmonary arterial smooth muscle cells (PASMCs) proliferation and pulmonary arterial remodeling therefore the development of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). Yet, the underlying molecular mechanisms remain poorly understood. The present study aims to address this issue. Our results demonstrate that LTB dose- and time-dependently induced proliferation of primary cultured rat PASMCs, this was accompanied with the activation of phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase/Akt (PI3K/Akt) and extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) signaling pathways, and consequent inactivation of glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β), up-regulation of β-catenin and induction of cyclin D1 expression. The presence of PI3K inhibitor (LY294002) or MEK inhibitor (U0126) or prior silencing of β-catenin with siRNA suppressed LTB-induced cyclin D1 up-regulation and PASMCs proliferation. In addition, inactivation or lack of GSK-3β up-regulated β-catenin and cyclin D1 in PASMCs. Taken together, our study indicates that activation of PI3K/Akt and ERK1/2 pathways mediates LTB-induced PASMCs proliferation by modulating GSK-3β/β-catenin/cyclin D1 axis and suggests that targeting this pathway might have potential value in alleviating vascular remodeling and benefit PAH.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejphar.2019.172823DOI Listing
January 2020

Modeling flood susceptibility using data-driven approaches of naïve Bayes tree, alternating decision tree, and random forest methods.

Sci Total Environ 2020 Jan 2;701:134979. Epub 2019 Nov 2.

Faculty of Built Environment and Surveying, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), 81310 Johor Bahru, Malaysia.

Floods are one of the most devastating types of disasters that cause loss of lives and property worldwide each year. This study aimed to evaluate and compare the prediction capability of the naïve Bayes tree (NBTree), alternating decision tree (ADTree), and random forest (RF) methods for the spatial prediction of flood occurrence in the Quannan area, China. A flood inventory map with 363 flood locations was produced and partitioned into training and validation datasets through random selection with a ratio of 70/30. The spatial flood database was constructed using thirteen flood explanatory factors. The probability certainty factor (PCF) method was used to analyze the correlation between the factors and flood occurrences. Consequently, three flood susceptibility maps were produced using the NBTree, ADTree, and RF methods. Finally, the area under the curve (AUC) and statistical measures were used to validate the flood susceptibility models. The results indicated that the RF method is an efficient and reliable model in flood susceptibility assessment, with the highest AUC values, positive predictive rate, negative predictive rate, sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy for the training (0.951, 0.892, 0.941, 0.945, 0.886, and 0.915, respectively) and validation (0.925, 0.851, 0.938, 0.945, 0.835, and 0.890, respectively) datasets.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.134979DOI Listing
January 2020

Cytokinin Detection during the Life Cycle: Profiles Are Dynamic and Affect Cell Growth and Spore Germination.

Biomolecules 2019 11 5;9(11). Epub 2019 Nov 5.

Department of Biology, Trent University, Peterborough, ON K9L 0G2 Canada.

Cytokinins (CKs) are a family of evolutionarily conserved growth regulating hormones. While CKs are well-characterized in plant systems, these -substituted adenine derivatives are found in a variety of organisms beyond plants, including bacteria, fungi, mammals, and the social amoeba, . Within , CKs have only been studied in the late developmental stages of the life cycle, where they promote spore encapsulation and dormancy. In this study, we used ultra high-performance liquid chromatography-positive electrospray ionization-high resolution tandem mass spectrometry (UHPLC-(ESI+)-HRMS/MS) to profile CKs during the life cycle: growth, aggregation, mound, slug, fruiting body, and germination. Comprehensive profiling revealed that produces 6 CK forms (-Zeatin (Z), discadenine (DA), -isopentenyladenine (iP), -isopentenyladenine-9-riboside (iPR), -isopentenyladenine-9-riboside-5' phosphate (iPRP), and 2-methylthio--isopentenyladenine (2MeSiP)) in varying abundance across the sampled life cycle stages, thus laying the foundation for the CK biosynthesis pathway to be defined in this organism. Interestingly, iP-type CKs were the most dominant CK analytes detected during growth and aggregation. Exogenous treatment of AX3 cells with various CK types revealed that iP was the only CK to promote the proliferation of cells in culture. In support of previous studies, metabolomics data revealed that DA is one of the most significantly upregulated small molecules during development, and our data indicates that total CK levels are highest during germination. While much remains to be explored in , this research offers new insight into the nature of CK biosynthesis, secretion, and function during growth, development, and spore germination.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/biom9110702DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6920973PMC
November 2019

Quantitative Susceptibility Mapping: MRI at 7T versus 3T.

J Neuroimaging 2020 01 18;30(1):65-75. Epub 2019 Oct 18.

Department of Radiology, Weill Cornell Medicine, New York, NY.

Background And Purpose: Ultrahigh-field 7T promises more than doubling the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of 3T for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), particularly for MRI of magnetic susceptibility effects induced by B . Quantitative susceptibility mapping (QSM) is based on deconvolving the induced phase (or field) and would therefore benefit substantially from 7T. The purpose of this work was to compare QSM performance at 7T versus 3T in an intrascanner test-retest experiment with varying echo numbers (5 and 10 echoes).

Methods: A prospective study in N = 10 healthy subjects was carried out at both 3T and 7T field strengths. Gradient echo data using 5 and 10 echoes were acquired twice in each subject. Test-retest reproducibility was assessed using Bland-Altman and regression analysis of region of interest measurements. Image quality was scored by an experienced neuroradiologist.

Results: Intrascanner bias was below 3.6 parts-per-billion (ppb) with correlation R > .85. Interscanner bias was below 10.9 ppb with correlation R > .8. The image quality score for the 3T 10 echo protocol was not different from the 7T 5 echo protocol (P = .65).

Conclusion: Excellent image quality and good reproducibility was observed. 7T allows equivalent image quality of 3T in half of the scan time.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jon.12669DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6954973PMC
January 2020

Comparative study of striatum GABA concentrations and magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging in Parkinson's disease monkeys.

BMC Neurosci 2019 08 8;20(1):42. Epub 2019 Aug 8.

Department of Radiology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Guangxi Medical University, No. 6, Shuangyong Road, Nanning, 530021, Guangxi Province, China.

Background: Parkinson's disease is a progressive degenerative nervous system disease. Recent studies have shown that secondary changes in the GABA system play directly affect the pathogenesis of PD. There is still much debate about GABA concentrations because currently, GABA concentrations in the brain tissue are obtained indirectly by measuring its concentration in the blood and cerebrospinal fluid. These results are unreliable. Magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) is the only noninvasive method for evaluating the concentration of metabolites in living brain tissue and has been widely applied in research and clinical practice. In addition, combining MEGA-PRESS technology with LCModel software for quantitative GABA measurements is largely recognized. At present, the PD monkeys model in primates has been increasingly proficient. Primates are more similar to humans in terms of brain structure and function than other animals. However, 3.0 T MRS studies involving the PD monkey model to measure metabolites in living subjects with PD are still rare. The study was performed at 3.0 T MRI with control monkeys and PD monkeys that were injected methyl-phenyl-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) in one side of common carotid artery before and 3 months after successful model establishment to measure GABA concentrations in the bilateral striatum. Behavioral observations were performed for all animals, and the behavioral score was recorded. After 3 months, the GABA concentration in the bilateral striatum was measured in both groups by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The data obtained from magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) were compared with the actual measured GABA concentrations in tissues isolated from the corresponding regions, and their correlations with the behavior score were analyzed. The research objectives are to investigate the changes of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) concentration in the bilateral striatum of monkeys with Parkinson's disease (PD) and the value of quantitatively measuring its concentration by noninvasive 3.0 T spectroscopy.

Results: (1) The MRS results showed that the GABA concentration in the injured side of the striatum of the PD monkeys was higher than in the contralateral side, but the difference was not statistically significant (P = 0.154). Compared with that the blank control group, the GABA concentration in the striatum of the PD monkeys increased, but there was no difference between the groups (P = 0.381; P = 0.425). (2) The GABA concentration that determined from the isolated specimens by HPLC in the injured side of the striatum of the PD monkeys was significantly higher than that in the contralateral side (P < 0.01). Compared with the blank control group, the PD monkeys had higher GABA concentrations in both sides of the striatum, and there was a significant difference in the lesion side (P = 0.004), while there was a non-significant difference in the contralateral side (P = 0.475). (3) The mean GABA concentration in the injured striatum of PD monkeys determined by MRS was not significantly correlated with the behavioral score (r = 0.146, P = 0.688). The mean GABA concentration in the injured striatum determined from the isolated specimens was positively correlated with the behavioral score in the same period (r = 0.444, P = 0.038).

Conclusion: The GABA concentration in the injured striatum of PD monkeys is increased and positively correlated with behavioral changes. Validity of noninvasive 3.0 T MRS to detect PD neurotransmitter changes is limited.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12868-019-0522-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6686405PMC
August 2019

Flood susceptibility mapping in Dingnan County (China) using adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system with biogeography based optimization and imperialistic competitive algorithm.

J Environ Manage 2019 Oct 4;247:712-729. Epub 2019 Jul 4.

Research Institute of the University of Bucharest, 36-46 Bd. M. Kogalniceanu, 5th District, 050107, Bucharest, Romania; National Institute of Hydrology and Water Management, București-Ploiești Road, 97E, 1st District, 013686, Bucharest, Romania.

Flooding is one of the most significant environmental challenges and can easily cause fatal incidents and economic losses. Flood reduction is costly and time-consuming task; so it is necessary to accurately detect flood susceptible areas. This work presents an effective flood susceptibility mapping framework by involving an adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS) with two metaheuristic methods of biogeography based optimization (BBO) and imperialistic competitive algorithm (ICA). A total of 13 flood influencing factors, including slope, altitude, aspect, curvature, topographic wetness index, stream power index, sediment transport index, distance to river, landuse, normalized difference vegetation index, lithology, rainfall and soil type, were used in the proposed framework for spatial modeling and Dingnan County in China was selected for the application of the proposed methods due to data availability. There are 115 flood occurrences in the study area which were randomly separated into training (70% of the total) and verification (30%) sets. To perform the proposed framework, the step-wise weight assessment ratio analysis algorithm is first used to evaluate the correlation between influencing factors and floods. Then, two ensemble methods of ANFIS-BBO and ANFIS-ICA are constructed for spatial prediction and producing flood susceptibility maps. Finally, these resultant maps are assessed in terms of several statistical and error measures, including receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve and area under the ROC curve (AUC), root-mean-square error (RMSE). The experimental results demonstrated that the two ensemble methods were more effective than ANFIS in the study area. For instance, the predictive AUC values of 0.8407, 0.9045 and 0.9044 were achieved by the methods of ANFIS, ANFIS-BBO and ANFIS-ICA, respectively. Moreover, the RMSE values for ANFIS, ANFIS-BBO and ANFIS-ICA using the verification set were 0.3100, 0.2730 and 0.2700, respectively. In addition, as regards ANFIS-BBO and ANFIS-ICA, a total areas of 39.30% and 35.39% were classified as highly susceptible to flooding. Therefore, the proposed ensemble framework can be used for flood susceptibility mapping in other sites with similar geo-environmental characteristics for taking measures to manage and prevent flood damages.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2019.06.102DOI Listing
October 2019

Efficacy and acceptability of immunosuppressive agents for pediatric frequently-relapsing and steroid-dependent nephrotic syndrome: A network meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.

Medicine (Baltimore) 2019 May;98(22):e15927

Nephrology Department, Children's Hospital Affiliated to Chongqing Medical University.

Introduction: A network meta-analysis was conducted to regard the effects of available immunosuppressive medications in pediatric frequently-relapsing nephrotic syndrome (FRNS) and steroid-dependent nephrotic syndrome (SDNS).

Methods: We reviewed systematically 26 randomized controlled trials (1311 patients) that compared any of the following immunosuppressive agents to placebo/nontreatment (P/NT) or another drug for FRNS/SDNS treatment in children.

Results: The main outcomes were efficacy and acceptability. At the 6-month, cyclophosphamide, chlorambucil, levamisole, and rituximab had better efficacy than P/NT (odds ratio [OR]: 0.09, 0.03, 0.28, and 0.07, respectively); cyclophosphamide was significantly more effective than azathioprine and chlorambucil. At 12 months, cyclophosphamide, chlorambucil, cyclosporine, levamisole, and rituximab had better efficacy than P/NT (0.10, 0.03, 0.10, 0.23, and 0.07, respectively); Chlorambucil were found to be more efficacious than levamisole and MMF (0.12 and 0.09, respectively). At 24 months, cyclophosphamide, chlorambucil, and levamisole had better efficacy than P/NT (0.09, 0.04, and 0.03, respectively); cyclophosphamide had better efficacy than cyclosporine and vincristine (0.17 and 0.39, respectively).

Conclusion: No significant differences in acceptability were found. Our results suggest that cyclophosphamide may be preferred initially in children with FRSN/SDNS, chlorambucil, and rituximab may be acceptable medications for patients with FRSN/SDNS. Long-term follow-up trials focused on gonadal toxicity and limitation of maximum dosage of cyclophosphamide should been carried out.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/MD.0000000000015927DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6709258PMC
May 2019

Sclerostin Antibody Mitigates Estrogen Deficiency-Inducted Marrow Lipid Accumulation Assessed by Proton MR Spectroscopy.

Front Endocrinol (Lausanne) 2019 20;10:159. Epub 2019 Mar 20.

Department of Endocrinology, The Second Military Medical University Affiliated Gongli Hospital, Shanghai, China.

Sclerostin knock-out mice or sclerostin antibody (Scl-Ab) treated wild-type mice displayed decreased marrow adiposity. But the effects of Scl-Ab on estrogen deficiency-induced marrow fat expansion remain elusive. In this work, 45 female New Zealand rabbits were equally divided into sham-operation, ovariectomy controls, and ovariectomy treated with Scl-Ab for 5 months. MR spectroscopy was performed to longitudinally assess marrow fat fraction at baseline conditions, 2.5 and 5 months post-operatively, respectively. We evaluated bone mineral density (BMD), bone structural parameters, serum bone biomarkers, and quantitative parameters of marrow adipocytes. Ovariectomized rabbits markedly exhibited expansion of marrow fat in a time-dependent manner, with a variation of marrow fat fraction (+17.8%) at 2.5 months relative to baseline and it was maintained until 5 months (+30.4%, all < 0.001), which was accompanied by diminished BMD and deterioration of trabecular microstructure. Compared to sham controls, adipocyte mean diameter, adipocyte density and adipocytes area percentage was increased by 42.9, 68.3, and 108.6% in ovariectomized rabbits, respectively. Scl-Ab treatment increased serum bone formation marker and alleviated the ovariectomy escalation of serum bone resorption marker. It remarkably lessened the ovariectomy-mediated deterioration of BMD, and morphometric characteristics of trabecular bone. Marrow fat fraction was decreased significantly with Scl-Ab to levels matching that of sham-operated controls and correlated positively with reductions in adipocyte mean diameter, percentage adipocyte volume per marrow volume, and adipocyte density. Taken together, early Scl-Ab treatment reverts marrow fat expansion seen in ovariectomized rabbits in addition to having a beneficial effect on bone mass and microstructural properties.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fendo.2019.00159DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6436376PMC
March 2019

Angiotensin-converting enzyme insertion/deletion polymorphism and susceptibility to Henoch-Schönlein purpura: a meta-analysis.

J Renin Angiotensin Aldosterone Syst 2019 Jan-Mar;20(1):1470320319836302

Department of Pediatrics, Hangzhou Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine, China.

Objective:: Meta-analysis was performed in the current study to evaluate the relationship of the angiotensin-converting enzyme insertion/deletion polymorphism with the risk of the incidence of Henoch-Schönlein purpura.

Methods:: The electronic databases, including Embase, PubMed and Google scholar, were systemically retrieved to search for related articles. Meanwhile, statistical analysis was performed using the odds ratio and the corresponding 95% confidence interval.

Results:: A total of six articles enrolling 504 patients and 706 healthy controls was enrolled into the current meta-analysis. Results of the meta-analysis suggested that the angiotensin-converting enzyme D allele was markedly correlated with the risk of the incidence of Henoch-Schönlein purpura among the general population (deletion (D) vs. insertion (I): odds ratio (OR) 1.42, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.05-1.93; DD vs. II: OR 2.23, 95% CI 1.06-4.70; DI vs. II: OR 1.36, 95% CI 1.00-1.85; dominant model: OR 1.56, 95% CI 1.00-2.42; recessive model: OR 1.83, 95% CI 1.06-3.16). Moreover, such a polymorphism was found to correlate with the susceptibility to Henoch-Schönlein purpura when studies were stratified according to the sample size of over 200. In addition, such a polymorphism was recognised to be remarkably associated with the susceptibility to Henoch-Schönlein purpura in the Caucasian population, which was not found in the Asian population.

Conclusions:: The results of the current meta-analysis indicate that the angiotensin-converting enzyme D allele might be a risk factor against the risk of Henoch-Schönlein purpura, especially in Caucasians.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1470320319836302DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6413430PMC
July 2019

A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials: Efficacy of selenium treatment for sepsis.

Medicine (Baltimore) 2019 Mar;98(9):e14733

Department of Emergency, Children's Hospital of Chongqing Medical University.

Background: To understand the clinical outcomes of selenium therapy in patients with sepsis syndrome, we conducted a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCT).

Methods: A total of 13 RCTs comparing selenium and placebo for patients with sepsis were reviewed systematically.

Results: However, we could not detect the association of selenium treatment with a decreased mortality at different time course (relative risk [RR] [95% confidence interval, CI]: 0.94 [0.82-1.06] at day 28; 0.73 [0.36-1.47] at day 90; 1.16 [0.78-1.71] at 6 months; respectively). Selenium supplementation did not show favorable efficacy in the incidence of renal failure, secondary infection or duration of mechanical ventilation (RR [95% CI]: 0.65 [0.41-1.03]; 0.96 [0.87-1.06]; standard mean difference [SMD] [95% CI]: 0.17 [-0.30-0.63]; respectively). Interestingly, we found that selenium therapy was benefit for sepsis patients with reduced duration of vasopressor therapy, staying time in intensive care unit and hospital, and incidence of ventilator-associated pneumonia (SMD [95% CI]: -0.75 [-1.37 to -0.13]; -0.15 [CI: -0.25 to -0.04]; -1.22 [-2.44 to -0.01]; RR [95% CI]: 0.61 [0.42-0.89]; respectively).

Conclusion: Based on our findings, intravenous selenium supplementation could not be suggested for routine use.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/MD.0000000000014733DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6831114PMC
March 2019

Landslide spatial modelling using novel bivariate statistical based Naïve Bayes, RBF Classifier, and RBF Network machine learning algorithms.

Sci Total Environ 2019 May 26;663:1-15. Epub 2019 Jan 26.

Faculty of Built Environment and Surveying, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), 81310 Johor Bahru, Malaysia.

Landslides are major hazards for human activities often causing great damage to human lives and infrastructure. Therefore, the main aim of the present study is to evaluate and compare three machine learning algorithms (MLAs) including Naïve Bayes (NB), radial basis function (RBF) Classifier, and RBF Network for landslide susceptibility mapping (LSM) at Longhai area in China. A total of 14 landslide conditioning factors were obtained from various data sources, then the frequency ratio (FR) and support vector machine (SVM) methods were used for the correlation and selection the most important factors for modelling process, respectively. Subsequently, the resulting three models were validated and compared using some statistical metrics including area under the receiver operating characteristics (AUROC) curve, and Friedman and Wilcoxon signed-rank tests The results indicated that the RBF Classifier model had the highest goodness-of-fit and performance based on the training and validation datasets. The results concluded that the RBF Classifier model outperformed and outclassed (AUROC = 0.881), the NB (AUROC = 0.872) and the RBF Network (AUROC = 0.854) models. The obtained results pointed out that the RBF Classifier model is a promising method for spatial prediction of landslide over the world.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.01.329DOI Listing
May 2019

Novel Entropy and Rotation Forest-Based Credal Decision Tree Classifier for Landslide Susceptibility Modeling.

Entropy (Basel) 2019 Jan 23;21(2). Epub 2019 Jan 23.

College of Geology & Environment, Xi'an University of Science and Technology, Xi'an 710054, Shaanxi, China.

Landslides are a major geological hazard worldwide. Landslide susceptibility assessments are useful to mitigate human casualties, loss of property, and damage to natural resources, ecosystems, and infrastructures. This study aims to evaluate landslide susceptibility using a novel hybrid intelligence approach with the rotation forest-based credal decision tree (RF-CDT) classifier. First, 152 landslide locations and 15 landslide conditioning factors were collected from the study area. Then, these conditioning factors were assigned values using an entropy method and subsequently optimized using correlation attribute evaluation (CAE). Finally, the performance of the proposed hybrid model was validated using the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve and compared with two well-known ensemble models, bagging (bag-CDT) and MultiBoostAB (MB-CDT). Results show that the proposed RF-CDT model had better performance than the single CDT model and hybrid bag-CDT and MB-CDT models. The findings in the present study overall confirm that a combination of the meta model with a decision tree classifier could enhance the prediction power of the single landslide model. The resulting susceptibility maps could be effective for enforcement of land management regulations to reduce landslide hazards in the study area and other similar areas in the world.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/e21020106DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7514589PMC
January 2019

SphK1/S1P mediates TGF-β1-induced proliferation of pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells and its potential mechanisms.

Pulm Circ 2019 Jan-Mar;9(1):2045894018816977. Epub 2018 Nov 15.

Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an, Shaanxi, PR China.

The upregulation of Sphingosine kinase 1 (SphK1) expression and accompanied sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) production have been reported to contribute to the proliferation of pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells (PASMC) and pulmonary arterial remodeling. However, the molecular mechanisms of SphK1/S1P upregulation in PASMC and the specific mechanisms of how SphK1/S1P pathway promotes PASMC proliferation remain largely unclear. This study aims to address these issues. Here, we demonstrated that TGF-β1 significantly upregulated SphK1 expression and S1P production by promoting the phosphorylation of Smad2/3 in PASMC. Further study indicated that SphK1/S1P pathway mediated TGF-β1-induced Notch3 activation in PASMC. In addition, we showed that TGF-β1 significantly induced proliferation of PASMC, while pre-inhibition of Smad2/3 phosphorylation with SB431542 or silencing SphK1 using small interfering RNA in advance, or pre-blocking Notch3 pathway with N-[N-(3,5-difluorophenacetyl)-L-alanyl]-S-phenylglycine t-butyl ester (DAPT), attenuated TGF-β1-induced PASMC proliferation. Taken together, our study indicates that Smad2/3/SphK1/S1P/Notch3 pathway mediates TGF-β1-induced PASMC proliferation and suggests this pathway as a potential therapeutic target in the prevention and treatment of pulmonary hypertension.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/2045894018816977DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6295694PMC
November 2018

Association of interleukin-17a rs2275913 gene polymorphism and asthma risk: a meta-analysis.

Arch Med Sci 2018 Oct 2;14(6):1204-1211. Epub 2018 Mar 2.

Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, the First Affiliated Hospital of Xi'an Jiaotong University, China.

Introduction: Interleukin-17A (IL-17A), a pro-inflammatory cytokine, plays an important role in the pathogenesis of asthma. A number of studies have investigated the relationship between IL-17A rs2275913 polymorphism and risk of asthma. However, the results obtained are inconclusive. The aim of this meta-analysis is to clarify the relationship between IL-17A rs2275913 polymorphism and asthma risk.

Material And Methods: Searches were conducted in PubMed, Web of Science, Elsevier, Google Scholar, Wanfang and Chinese National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI) databases, and data were extracted from eligible studies by two independent reviewers. The pooled odds ratios (ORs) and corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated. Publication bias, heterogeneity and sensitivity analysis were also assessed.

Results: Ten studies with a total of 5016 subjects were included. Overall, the results indicated a significant association between the IL-17A rs2275913 polymorphism and the risk of asthma (G vs. A: OR = 0.866, 95% CI: 0.789-0.951, = 0.003; GG+GA vs. AA: OR = 0.752, 95% CI: 0.633-0.895, = 0.001). In subgroup analysis by age and ethnicity, the G allele of rs2275913 in IL-17A was significantly associated with a reduced risk of asthma in children and Asians.

Conclusions: The results of this meta-analysis indicate that the G allele of rs2275913 in IL-17A is a protective factor for the development of asthma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.5114/aoms.2018.73345DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6209699PMC
October 2018

Novel Hybrid Evolutionary Algorithms for Spatial Prediction of Floods.

Sci Rep 2018 10 18;8(1):15364. Epub 2018 Oct 18.

Department of Geoinformation, Faculty of Geoinformation and Real Estate, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), Johor Bahru, Malaysia.

Adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS) includes two novel GIS-based ensemble artificial intelligence approaches called imperialistic competitive algorithm (ICA) and firefly algorithm (FA). This combination could result in ANFIS-ICA and ANFIS-FA models, which were applied to flood spatial modelling and its mapping in the Haraz watershed in Northern Province of Mazandaran, Iran. Ten influential factors including slope angle, elevation, stream power index (SPI), curvature, topographic wetness index (TWI), lithology, rainfall, land use, stream density, and the distance to river were selected for flood modelling. The validity of the models was assessed using statistical error-indices (RMSE and MSE), statistical tests (Friedman and Wilcoxon signed-rank tests), and the area under the curve (AUC) of success. The prediction accuracy of the models was compared to some new state-of-the-art sophisticated machine learning techniques that had previously been successfully tested in the study area. The results confirmed the goodness of fit and appropriate prediction accuracy of the two ensemble models. However, the ANFIS-ICA model (AUC = 0.947) had a better performance in comparison to the Bagging-LMT (AUC = 0.940), BLR (AUC = 0.936), LMT (AUC = 0.934), ANFIS-FA (AUC = 0.917), LR (AUC = 0.885) and RF (AUC = 0.806) models. Therefore, the ANFIS-ICA model can be introduced as a promising method for the sustainable management of flood-prone areas.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-33755-7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6193992PMC
October 2018