Publications by authors named "Soyoung Park"

261 Publications

JULGI-mediated increment in phloem transport capacity relates to fruit yield in tomato.

Plant Biotechnol J 2022 Apr 28. Epub 2022 Apr 28.

Department of Life Sciences, POSTECH Biotech Center, Pohang University of Science and Technology, Pohang, Korea.

The continuous growth of the global population and the increase in the amount of arid land has severely constrained agricultural crop production. To solve this problem, many researchers have attempted to increase productivity through the efficient distribution of energy; however, the direct relationship between the plant vasculature, specifically phloem development, and crop yield is not well established. Here, we demonstrate that an optimum increase in phloem-transportation capacity by reducing SIJUL expression leads to improved sink strength in tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.). SIJUL, a negative regulator of phloem development, suppresses the translation of a positive regulator of phloem development, SlSMXL5. The suppression of SlJUL increases the number of phloem cells and sucrose transport, but only an optimal reduction of SlJUL function greatly enhances sink strength in tomato, improving fruit setting, and yield contents by 37% and 60%, respectively. We show that the increment in phloem cell number confers spare transport capacity. Our results suggest that the control of phloem-transport capacity within the threshold could enhance the commitment of photosynthates to instigate yield improvement.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/pbi.13831DOI Listing
April 2022

Characterization of 2-Fluoro-2'-deoxyadenosine in Duplex, G-Quadruplex and i-Motif.

Chembiochem 2022 Apr 19:e202200222. Epub 2022 Apr 19.

Immunology Frontier Research Center (WPI-iFReC), Osaka University, Yamadaoka 3-1, Suita, Osaka, 565-0871, Japan.

Among various kinds of fluorine-substituted biomolecules, 2-fluoroadenine (2FA) and its derivatives have been actively investigated as therapeutic reagents, radio-sensitizers, and F NMR probes. In spite of their excellent properties, DNA containing 2FA has not been studied well. For fundamental understanding and future applications to the development of functional nucleic acids, we characterized 2FA-containing oligonucleotides for canonical right-handed DNA duplex, G-quadruplex, and i-motif structures. Properties of 2FA were similar to native adenine due to the small size of the fluorine atom, but it showed unique features caused by high electronegativity. This work provides useful information for future application of 2FA-modified DNA.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/cbic.202200222DOI Listing
April 2022

Review of Inhalation Health Risks Involving Chloromethylisothiazolinone (CMIT) and Methylisothiazolinone (MIT) Used as Disinfectants in Household Humidifiers.

J Korean Med Sci 2022 Apr 4;37(13):e101. Epub 2022 Apr 4.

Department of Environmental Health, Korea National Open University, Seoul, Korea.

The association between lung injury and exposure to humidifier disinfectant (HD) containing a mixture of chloromethylisothiazolinone (CMIT) and methylisothiazolinone (MIT) has been controversial in South Korea. This study conducts a literature review in order to evaluate the likelihood of CMIT/MIT reaching the lower part of the respiratory tract and causing lung injury. A literature review focused on the inhalation risk of HD containing a mixture of CMIT and MIT. The major contents included the physicochemical properties of CMIT and MIT contained in HDs and methodological reviews on substance analysis, toxicity tests and clinical cases. HD products marketed in South Korea have been reported to contain approximately 1-2% CMIT and 0.2-0.6% MIT along with magnesium nitrate (20-25%), magnesium chloride (0.2-1.0%), and water (70-75%). The types of CMIT and MIT dispersed into the air and deposited in the respiratory tract are assumed to be either gaseous substances or nanoparticles mixed with magnesium salts. The result of the literature review including clinical cases of lung injury among CMIT/MIT HD product users, demonstrated that these chemicals likely reach the lower respiratory tract and accordingly cause lung injury. A number of humidifier disinfectant-associated lung injury cases with clinical evidence should be prioritized in risk assessment of HD containing CMIT and MIT, even though there might be insufficient evidence in all related areas, including inhalation exposure assessment studies, animal testing, and epidemiological studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3346/jkms.2022.37.e101DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8980362PMC
April 2022

Harnessing DNA as a Designable Scaffold for Asymmetric Catalysis: Recent Advances and Future Perspectives.

Chem Rec 2022 Mar 21:e202100333. Epub 2022 Mar 21.

Immunology Frontier Research Center (iFReC), Osaka University, 3-1 Yamadaoka, Suita, 565-0871, Japan.

Since the first report of DNAzyme by in vitro selection in 1994, catalytic DNA has investigated extensively, and their application has expanded continually in virtue of rapid advances in molecular biology and biotechnology. Nowadays, DNA is in the second prime time by way of DNA-based hybrid catalysts and DNA metalloenzymes in which helical chirality of DNA serves to asymmetric catalysis. DNA-based hybrid catalysts are attractive system to respond the demand of the times to pursuit green and sustainable society beyond traditional catalytic systems that value reaction efficiency. Herein, we highlight the recent advances and perspective of DNA-based hybrid catalysts with various aspects of DNA as a versatile scaffold for asymmetric synthesis. We hope that scientists in a variety of fields will be encouraged to join and promote remarkable evolution of this interesting research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/tcr.202100333DOI Listing
March 2022

Meal Timing and Macronutrient Composition Modulate Human Metabolism and Reward-Related Drive to Eat.

Nutrients 2022 Jan 27;14(3). Epub 2022 Jan 27.

Institute for Endocrinology and Diabetes, University of Lübeck, Ratzeburger Allee 160, 23562 Lubeck, Germany.

The time-of-day' modifies the metabolic response to meals, but less data exist on the diurnal variations in the hedonic drive to eat. In the present paper, we evaluate the effects of meal timing and macronutrient composition on metabolic responses and the homeostatic vs. hedonic regulation of appetite. In study 1, 84 young, healthy adults completed an online computer-based task assessing the homeostatic and hedonic drive to eat in the morning and evening. In study 2, 24 healthy, young men received 2 identical (850 kcal each) meals in the morning (8:45 h) and evening (18:00 h), of 2 experimental conditions: (i) regular carbohydrate (CH) meals (regular-CH), and (ii) high carbohydrate (high-CH) meals, containing 50 and 80% of energy from CHs, respectively. Serial blood samples were obtained, and the postprandial feelings of hunger, satiety, wanting and liking were assessed. Study 1 revealed a higher hedonic drive to eat in the evening compared to the morning. Study 2 confirmed this diurnal pattern of hedonic appetite regulation and, moreover, showed increased glucose and insulin responses to the evening meal. Postprandial ghrelin and leptin as well as feelings of hunger and satiety were not different between the mealtimes nor between the macronutrient conditions. In line with this, the homeostatic drive to eat was neither affected by the mealtime nor macronutrient composition. Increased the hedonic drive to eat in the evening may represent a vulnerability to palatable food and, thus, energy overconsumption. Together with lower evening glucose tolerance, these findings reflect an adverse metabolic constellation at the end of the day, especially after the ingestion of CH-rich foods.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/nu14030562DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8839823PMC
January 2022

Splicing Variants, Protein-Protein Interactions, and Drug Targeting in Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome and Small Cell Lung Cancer.

Genes (Basel) 2022 01 18;13(2). Epub 2022 Jan 18.

Rare Disease R&D Center, PRG S&T Co., Ltd., Busan 46241, Korea.

Alternative splicing (AS) is a biological operation that enables a messenger RNA to encode protein variants (isoforms) that give one gene several functions or properties. This process provides one of the major sources of use for understanding the proteomic diversity of multicellular organisms. In combination with post-translational modifications, it contributes to generating a variety of protein-protein interactions (PPIs) that are essential to cellular homeostasis or proteostasis. However, cells exposed to many kinds of stresses (aging, genetic changes, carcinogens, etc.) sometimes derive cancer or disease onset from aberrant PPIs caused by DNA mutations. In this review, we summarize how splicing variants may form a neomorphic protein complex and cause diseases such as Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome (HGPS) and small cell lung cancer (SCLC), and we discuss how protein-protein interfaces obtained from the variants may represent efficient therapeutic target sites to treat HGPS and SCLC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/genes13020165DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8871687PMC
January 2022

Characteristics of workers' compensation claim applications for COVID-19 infections in South Korea.

Ind Health 2022 Feb 15. Epub 2022 Feb 15.

Department of Environmental Health, Korea National Open University, Republic of Korea.

This study aimed to identify the major industries and jobs with the highest proportion of workers' compensation (WC) claims for COVID-19, characterize COVID-19 WC claims in terms of their demographic properties and disease severity, and identify factors influencing the approval of COVID-19 WC claims as occupational disease. A total of 488 workers who submitted COVID-19-related claims to the Korea Workers' Compensation and Welfare Service (KWCWS) from January 2020 to July 2021 were analyzed. A Fisher's exact test was employed to associate the severity of COVID-19 infection with demographic properties. The highest proportion of all COVID-19 WC claims compensated as occupational disease (N=462) were submitted by healthcare workers (HCW=233, 50%), while only 9% (N=41) of the total originated from manufacturing industries. The 5% (N=26) of the COVID-19 WC claims accepted were evaluated as severe (N=15) and acute respiratory distress syndrome (N=9). A total of 71% (N=329) of the COVID-19 patients compensated (N=462) were from workplaces with infection clusters. A total of 26 WC cases were rejected for various reasons, including unclear infection routes, infection at private gatherings (including within families), no diagnosis, and more. Given our findings, we suggest an official system should be established to detect and compensate more job-associated infectious diseases like COVID-19.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2486/indhealth.2021-0271DOI Listing
February 2022

Photo-Cross-Linking between U and Pyrene Residues in an RNA/DNA Hybrid.

Chembiochem 2022 03 14;23(6):e202100626. Epub 2022 Feb 14.

Department of Chemistry, Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University, Sakyo, Kyoto, 606-8502, Japan.

In this study, we investigated the photoreaction of U in a pyrene-labeled DNA duplex, RNA duplex, and DNA/RNA hybrids. We found that the photoreactivity of U changed dramatically from hydrogen abstraction to cross-linking by changing the conformation of the duplex from the B-form to the A-form. Among three A-form structures, the largest amount of cross-linked products was observed when U was incorporated into the RNA strand and the pyrene was conjugated to the 5' end of the DNA. These results indicate that the contact manner of pyrene was different between A- and B-form duplexes. This is a rare example of the use of the reactivity of bromouracil to analyze the contact between a small molecule with a weak binding affinity and a nucleic acid.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/cbic.202100626DOI Listing
March 2022

Participation in Sports Activities before and after the Outbreak of COVID-19: Analysis of Data from the 2020 Korea National Sports Participation Survey.

Healthcare (Basel) 2022 Jan 8;10(1). Epub 2022 Jan 8.

Sport Medicine Major, College of Humanities and Arts, Korea National University of Transportation, Chungju-si 27469, Korea.

The present study aimed to describe the characteristics and rate of participation in sports activities, changes in sports, and the causes of these changes before and after the COVID-19 out-break in Korea using data from the 2020 Korea National Sports Participation Survey (KNSPS). Furthermore, evidence from this study could be used as basic data to maintain and promote sports activities given the current situation, in which the continued spread of infectious diseases, such as COVID-19, is likely. The KNSPS is an annual survey of subjective health and fitness, sports activities and conditions, and participation in sports activities, conducted among a sample comprising the entire Korean population. The current study analyzed data for 9000 participants, and descriptive statistical analysis was performed to calculate the frequency of each item and sample weight. The rate of regular participation in sports activities at least once a week was found to be 60.10% in 2020, representing a decrease of 6.48% from the rate observed in 2019. Among the types of sports facilities frequently used within the residential area, the most common facilities were private sports facilities (22.97%), other sports facilities (20.60%), and public sports facilities (18.97%), although the utilization rate for other sports facilities increased after the COVID-19 outbreak. After the COVID-19 outbreak, 34.12% of men and 29.72% of women responded that there had been a change in their participation in regular sports activities. Both before and after the COVID-19 outbreak, walking was the most common activity, although the participation rate increased from 29.23% in 2019 to 35.70% in 2020. The rankings and participation rates for indoor sports activities (bodybuilding, swimming, etc.) tended to decrease, while those for outdoor sports activities (climbing, cycling, etc.) tended to increase. These changes may be explained in part by the increasing concern regarding infection with increasing age, except among teenagers, and by economic factors. While participation in physical activity provides numerous health benefits, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a negative impact on regular participation in sports activities. The results of this survey suggest that government action is required to enhance participation in sports activities, even in the face of a pandemic.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/healthcare10010122DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8775669PMC
January 2022

The effect of image descriptors on the performance of classifiers of footwear outsole image pairs.

Forensic Sci Int 2022 Feb 29;331:111126. Epub 2021 Nov 29.

Center for Statistics and Applications in Forensic Evidence (CSAFE), Iowa State University, USA. Electronic address:

Shoe prints are commonly found at the scene of a crime and can sometimes help link a suspect to the scene. Because prints tend to be partially observed or smudgy, comparing crime scene prints with reference images from a putative shoe can be challenging. Footwear examiners rely on guidelines such as those published by SWGTREAD [1] to visually assess the similarity between two or more footwear impressions, one reason being that reliable, quantitative methods have yet to be validated for use in real cases. To help in the development of such methods, we created a study dataset of images of outsole impressions that shared class characteristics and degree of wear and that were subject to a specific type of degradation. We also propose a method to quantify the similarity between two outsole images that extends the capabilities of MC-COMP [2]. The proposed method is composed of three steps; (1) extracting image descriptors, (2) aligning images using the maximum clique, (3) calculating similarity values using two different classifiers; (a) degree of overlap between the two images, and (b) a score produced by a random forest. To explore the performance of the algorithm we propose, we compared degraded, crime scene-like images to high-quality reference images produced by the same or by different shoes. Even though comparisons involved matches or very close non-matches, and one of the images was blurry, the algorithm shows good source classification performance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.forsciint.2021.111126DOI Listing
February 2022

Novel chemical inhibitor against SOD1 misfolding and aggregation protects neuron-loss and ameliorates disease symptoms in ALS mouse model.

Commun Biol 2021 12 15;4(1):1397. Epub 2021 Dec 15.

Department of Molecular Biology, College of Natural Science, Pusan National University, Busan, Republic of Korea.

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by selective death of motor neurons. Mutations in Cu, Zn-superoxide dismutase (SOD1) causing the gain of its toxic property are the major culprit of familial ALS (fALS). The abnormal SOD1 aggregation in the motor neurons has been suggested as the major pathological hallmark of ALS patients. However, the development of pharmacological interventions against SOD1 still needs further investigation. In this study, using ELISA-based chemical screening with wild and mutant SOD1 proteins, we screened a new small molecule, PRG-A01, which could block the misfolding/aggregation of SOD1 or TDP-43. The drug rescued the cell death induced by mutant SOD1 in human neuroblastoma cell line. Administration of PRG-A01 into the ALS model mouse resulted in significant improvement of muscle strength, motor neuron viability and mobility with extended lifespan. These results suggest that SOD1 misfolding/aggregation is a potent therapeutic target for SOD1 related ALS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s42003-021-02862-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8674338PMC
December 2021

MRE11-dependent instability in mitochondrial DNA fork protection activates a cGAS immune signaling pathway.

Sci Adv 2021 Dec 15;7(51):eabf9441. Epub 2021 Dec 15.

Department of Cancer Biology, UT MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX, USA.

Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) instability activates cGAS-dependent innate immune signaling by unknown mechanisms. Here, we find that Fanconi anemia suppressor genes are acting in the mitochondria to protect mtDNA replication forks from instability. Specifically, Fanconi anemia patient cells show a loss of nascent mtDNA through MRE11 nuclease degradation. In contrast to DNA replication fork stability, which requires pathway activation by FANCD2-FANCI monoubiquitination and upstream FANC core complex genes, mitochondrial replication fork protection does not, revealing a mechanistic and genetic separation between mitochondrial and nuclear genome stability pathways. The degraded mtDNA causes hyperactivation of cGAS-dependent immune signaling resembling the unphosphorylated ISG3 response. Chemical inhibition of MRE11 suppresses this innate immune signaling, identifying MRE11 as a nuclease responsible for activating the mtDNA-dependent cGAS/STING response. Collective results establish a previously unknown molecular pathway for mtDNA replication stability and reveal a molecular handle to control mtDNA-dependent cGAS activation by inhibiting MRE11 nuclease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.abf9441DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8673762PMC
December 2021

Enhanced Immunostimulatory Activity of Covalent DNA Dendrons.

Chembiochem 2022 02 23;23(4):e202100583. Epub 2021 Dec 23.

Department of Biopharmaceutics and Drug Metabolism, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Kyoto University, 46-29 Yoshidashimoadachi-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto, 606-8501, Japan.

The present study focused on the design and synthesis of covalent DNA dendrons bearing multivalent cytosine-phosphate-guanine oligodeoxynucleotides (CpG ODNs) that can stimulate the immune system through the activation of TLR9. These dendrons were synthesized using branching trebler phosphoramidite containing three identical protecting groups that enabled the simultaneous synthesis of multiple strands on a single molecule. Compared with linear ODNs, covalent DNA dendrons were found to be more resistant to nuclease degradation and were more efficiently taken up by macrophage-like RAW264.7 cells. Cellular uptake was suggested to be mediated by macrophage scavenger receptors. The covalent DNA dendrons composed of multivalent immunostimulatory branches enhanced the secretion of proinflammatory cytokines TNF-α and IL-6 from RAW264.7 cells, and 9-branched DNA dendrons showed the highest enhancement. Given their enhanced efficacy, we expect covalent DNA dendrons to be useful structures of oligonucleotide medicines.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/cbic.202100583DOI Listing
February 2022

A chalcone-based fluorescent chemosensor for detecting Mg and Cd.

Luminescence 2022 Feb 29;37(2):332-339. Epub 2021 Dec 29.

Department of Fine Chem., Seoul National Univ. of Sci. and Tech. (SNUT), Seoul, South Korea.

SBOD (sodium (E)-2-(3-[5-bromothiophen-2-yl]-3-oxoprop-1-en-1-yl)-4,6-dichlorophenolate) was designed and synthesized as a chalcone-based fluorescent turn-on chemosensor for Mg and Cd . SBOD selectively detected Mg and Cd through the increase in effective fluorescence. Detection limits of SBOD for Mg and Cd were calculated to be 3.8 μM and 2.9 μM, respectively. The binding modes of SBOD for Mg and Cd were determined to be 1:1 by ESI-MS and Job plot. Association mechanisms for SBOD to Mg and Cd were illustrated by ESI-MS, UV-vis, fluorescence spectroscopy, and calculations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/bio.4175DOI Listing
February 2022

Photoswitchable single-stranded DNA-peptide coacervate formation as a dynamic system for reaction control.

iScience 2021 Dec 14;24(12):103455. Epub 2021 Nov 14.

Department of Chemistry, Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University, Sakyo, Kyoto 606-8502, Japan.

In cells, segregation allows for diverse biochemical reactions to take place simultaneously. Such intricate regulation of cellular processes is achieved through the dynamic formation and disassembly of membraneless organelles via liquid-liquid phase separation (LLPS). Herein, we demonstrate the light-controlled formation and disassembly of liquid droplets formed from a complex of polylysine (pLys) and arylazopyrazole (AAP)-conjugated single-stranded DNA. Photoswitchablility of droplet formation was also shown to be applicable to the control of chemical reactions; imine formation and a DNAzyme-catalyzed oxidation reaction were accelerated in the presence of droplets. These outcomes were reversed upon droplet disassembly. Our results demonstrate that the photoswitchable droplet formation system is a versatile model for the regulation of reactions through dynamic LLPS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.isci.2021.103455DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8633985PMC
December 2021

Joint association of aerobic physical activity and muscle-strengthening activities with metabolic syndrome : the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2014-2015.

Epidemiol Health 2021 6;43:e2021096. Epub 2021 Nov 6.

Department of Physical Education, College of Education, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea.

Objectives: The study aimed to examine whether simultaneously meeting the combined guidelines of accelerometer-assessed moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and self-reported muscle-strengthening activity (MSA) was associated with lower odds of metabolic syndrome (MetS) than meeting neither or 1 of the guidelines among the Koreans.

Methods: This cross-sectional analysis included 1,355 participants from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (2014-2015). Logistic regression was used to analyze the associations across groups of MVPA-MSA guideline adherence (meeting neither [reference]; meeting MVPA only; meeting MSA only; meeting both MVPS and MSA) with MetS components (abdominal obesity, hypertriglyceridemia, low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol [HDL-C], hypertension, and hyperglycemia). The odds ratios (ORs) were adjusted for covariates (e.g., sex, age, body mass index, and accelerometer wearing time).

Results: MSA only significantly reduced the OR for abdominal obesity (OR, 0.34; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.13 to 0.91). Meeting both MVPA and MSA reduced the OR for hypertriglyceridemia (OR, 0.59; 95% CI, 0.39 to 0.88) and low HDL-C (OR, 0.46; 95% CI, 0.31 to 0.68). Compared to meeting neither, MVPA only (OR, 0.63; 95% CI, 0.44 to 0.89) and both MVPA and MSA (OR, 0.46; 95% CI, 0.28 to 0.76) significantly reduced the OR for MetS.

Conclusions: Combined MVPA-MSA was more beneficially associated with MetS prevalence than MVPA only and MSA only. Considering that more than 85% of Korean adults do not meet both the MVPA and MSA guidelines, public health actions to promote adherence should be supported.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2021096DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8920739PMC
January 2022

Erratum: Need for individual-based evaluation to determine the association between humidifier disinfectants and health injuries.

Ann Occup Environ Med 2021 19;33:e28. Epub 2021 Aug 19.

Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Kangbuk Samsung Hospital, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.

[This corrects the article e21 in vol. 33.].
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http://dx.doi.org/10.35371/aoem.2021.33.e28DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8446345PMC
August 2021

Need for individual-based evaluation to determine the association between humidifier disinfectants and health injuries.

Ann Occup Environ Med 2021 18;33:e21. Epub 2021 Jun 18.

Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Kangbuk Samsung Hospital, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.

Background: Injuries caused by humidifier disinfectants (HDs) can no longer be grouped under the concept of HD lung injury. Focusing on individual cases, we were able to evaluate the relevance not only of diseases for which epidemiological correlation is recognized but also all diseases and symptoms that the victims complain of.

Methods: In-depth interviews and reassessment of 113 HD-exposed patients who had not been acknowledged as victims by the government were conducted, and their medical records were reviewed. Based on these processes, an assessment questionnaire for the injuries related to HDs was completed and the involvement of HDs was assessed either as "strong association," "association," or "no association."

Results: In this study, of the 113 patients included who claimed damages, 78 (69.0%) had HD-related injuries. Among the cases of 22 patients who applied for injury acknowledgment due to upper respiratory inflammation that was not included among the acknowledged diseases, 17 (77.3%) were judged to be HD-related injuries (strong association vs. association: 10 [45.5%] vs. 7 [31.8%]). When the cases of 12 rhinitis patients were reassessed, 9 were HD-related injuries (strong association vs. association: 4 [33.3%] vs. 5 [41.7%]). When the cases of 18 asthma patients unacknowledged as a victim were reassessed, 17 (94.4%) were humidifier-related injuries (strong association vs. association: 12 [66.6%] vs. 5 [27.8%]). Among 4 interstitial lung disease patients unacknowledged as a victim, 2 (50.0%) were HD-related injuries.

Conclusions: HD-related health injuries should be assessed through both individual interviews and detailed chart reviews for more accurate injury acknowledgment. In the future, efforts should go beyond existing methods based on the adherence to acknowledgment criteria to directly listen to the victims.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.35371/aoem.2021.33.e21DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8264121PMC
June 2021

SagS and its unorthodox contributions to biofilm development.

Biofilm 2021 Dec 21;3:100059. Epub 2021 Oct 21.

Department of Biological Sciences, Binghamton University, Binghamton, NY, USA.

The orphan sensor SagS (PA2824) was initially reported as one of three orphan sensor kinases capable of activating HptB, a component of the HptB signaling pathway that intersects with the Gac/Rsm signaling pathway and fine-tunes motility and pathogenesis. Since then, this orphan sensor has been reported to be involved in other, unorthodox signaling pathways serving additional functions. The present review is aimed at summarizing the various functions of SagS, with an emphasis on its toggle or dual switch functions, and highlighting the role of SagS as a hub at which the various signaling pathways intersect, to regulate the transition from the planktonic to the sessile mode of growth, as well as the transition of surface-associated cells to a drug tolerant state.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bioflm.2021.100059DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8543379PMC
December 2021

RKIP Induction Promotes Tumor Differentiation via SOX2 Degradation in NF2-Deficient Conditions.

Mol Cancer Res 2022 Mar;20(3):412-424

Department of Molecular Biology, College of Natural Science, Pusan National University, Busan, Republic of Korea.

Loss of NF2 (merlin) has been suggested as a genetic cause of neurofibromatosis type 2 and malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor (MPNST). Previously, we demonstrated that NF2 sustained TGFβ receptor 2 (TβR2) expression and reduction or loss of NF2 activated non-canonical TGFβ signaling, which reduced Raf kinase inhibitor protein (RKIP) expression via TβR1 kinase activity. Here, we show that a selective RKIP inducer (novel chemical, Nf18001) inhibits tumor growth and promotes schwannoma cell differentiation into mature Schwann cells under NF2-deficient conditions. In addition, Nf18001 is not cytotoxic to cells expressing NF2 and is not disturb canonical TGFβ signaling. Moreover, the novel chemical induces expression of SOX10, a marker of differentiated Schwann cells, and promotes nuclear export and degradation of SOX2, a stem cell factor. Treatment with Nf18001 inhibited tumor growth in an allograft model with mouse schwannoma cells. These results strongly suggest that selective RKIP inducers could be useful for the treatment of neurofibromatosis type 2 as well as NF2-deficient MPNST.

Implications: This study identifies that a selective RKIP inducer inhibits tumor growth and promotes schwannoma cell differentiation under NF2-deficient conditions by reducing SOX2 and increasing SOX10 expression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1541-7786.MCR-21-0373DOI Listing
March 2022

Metabolic Perturbation and Synthetic Biology Strategies for Plant Terpenoid Production-An Updated Overview.

Plants (Basel) 2021 Oct 14;10(10). Epub 2021 Oct 14.

Department of Agricultural Biotechnology, National Institute of Agricultural Sciences, Rural Development Administration, Jeonju 54874, Korea.

Terpenoids represent one of the high-value groups of specialized metabolites with vast structural diversity. They exhibit versatile human benefits and have been successfully exploited in several sectors of day-to-day life applications, including cosmetics, foods, and pharmaceuticals. Historically, the potential use of terpenoids is challenging, and highly hampered by their bioavailability in their natural sources. Significant progress has been made in recent years to overcome such challenges by advancing the heterologous production platforms of hosts and metabolic engineering technologies. Herein, we summarize the latest developments associated with analytical platforms, metabolic engineering, and synthetic biology, with a focus on two terpenoid classes: monoterpenoids and sesquiterpenoids. Accumulated data showed that subcellular localization of both the precursor pool and the introduced enzymes were the crucial factors for increasing the production of targeted terpenoids in plants. We believe this timely review provides a glimpse of current state-of-the-art techniques/methodologies related to terpenoid engineering that would facilitate further improvements in terpenoids research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/plants10102179DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8539415PMC
October 2021

Influence of visual food cues on autonomic activity and craving.

Biol Psychol 2021 10 1;165:108197. Epub 2021 Oct 1.

Decision Neuroscience and Nutrition, German Institute of Human Nutrition (DIfE), Potsdam-Rehbruecke, Nuthetal, Germany; Corporate member of Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universitätzu Berlin, and Berlin Institute of Health, Neuroscience ResearchCenter, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, 10117 Berlin, Germany; Deutsches Zentrum für Diabetes, 85764 Neuherberg, Germany.

In this study, we tested the hypothesis that autonomic control of the stomach is related to craving and is modulated by visual food cues. Twenty-nine healthy human participants were shown pictures of either high- or low-appeal food, as well as non-food pictures, and were asked to rate how much they wanted to eat each item using a 7-point Likert scale. Simultaneously, the electrogastrogram, electrocardiogram, electrodermal activity, respiration rate, and pupil diameter were recorded. After the ingestion of a 500-kcal liquid meal, participants were asked to perform the task a second time. Despite changes in craving ratings, we did not find changes in the amplitude of the gastric rhythm, but we found increases in pupil diameter for the high appeal food pictures. Moreover, craving ratings were mostly related to increases in pupil and tonic electrodermal activity, compatible with an increase in arousal and a heightened motivational response to food.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biopsycho.2021.108197DOI Listing
October 2021

Humor and Hunger Affect the Response Toward Food Cues.

Front Psychol 2021 16;12:680508. Epub 2021 Sep 16.

Decision Neuroscience and Nutrition, German Institute of Human Nutrition (DIfE), Nuthetal, Germany.

The omnipresence of food cues in everyday life has been linked to troubled eating behavior and rising rates of obesity. While extended research has been conducted on the effects of negative emotions and stress on food consumption, very little is known about how positive emotions affect eating and particularly attention toward food cues. In the present study, we investigated whether humor impacts attentional bias toward food and whether it will affect preferences for healthy and unhealthy food items, depending on the hunger state. To do so, a group of randomly assigned participants watched funny video clips (humor group, = 46) or neutral ones (control group, = 49). Afterwards, they performed a modified Posner cueing task with low or high caloric food images serving as cues. We found a significant group × hunger interaction. Compared to the control group, the humor group responded more slowly to food cues when hungry, whereas the opposite was true when participants were satiated. Additionally, our results suggest that hunger possibly directs attention away from healthy food cues and toward unhealthy ones. No group differences were found with respect to food preferences and engagement and disengagement of attention. We discuss the potential of humor in counteracting aversive consequences of hunger on attention allocation toward food. We propose an underlying mechanism involving a combined reduction in cortisol levels and a decrease in activation of the reward system. However, given the novelty of the findings, further research is warranted, both to replicate the results as well as to investigate the suggested underlying processes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.680508DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8481376PMC
September 2021

Isolation of Polysaccharides from with Antioxidant, Anticancer, and Enzyme Inhibition Properties.

Antioxidants (Basel) 2021 Aug 28;10(9). Epub 2021 Aug 28.

Department of Bio Health Convergence, Kangwon National University, Chuncheon 200-701, Korea.

In this work, a total of six polysaccharides were isolated from culture filtrate (EPS1, EPS2) and mycelia (IPS1-IPS4) of . The HPLC analysis results showed that EPS1, EPS2, IPS1, and IPS2 were composed of mannose, ribose, glucose, galactose, and arabinose. The FT-IR, H, and C NMR chemical shifts confirmed that the signals in EPS1 mainly consist of (1→4)-linked α-d-glucopyranose. EPS1 and IPS1 showed a smooth and clean surface, while EPS2, IPS2, and IPS3 exhibited a microporous structure. Among polysaccharides, EPS1 displayed higher ABTS (47.09 ± 2.25% and DPPH (26.44 ± 0.12%) scavenging activities, as well as higher α-amylase (69.30 ± 1.28%) and α-glucosidase (68.22 ± 0.64%) inhibition activity than the other polysaccharides. EPS1 exhibited high cytotoxicity to MDA-MB293 cells, with an IC of 0.437 mg/mL, and this was also confirmed by cell staining and FACS assays. These results report the physicochemical and bioactive properties of polysaccharides from .
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/antiox10091372DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8471597PMC
August 2021

Photo-Controllable Phase Transition of Arylazopyrazole-Conjugated Oligonucleotides.

Bioconjug Chem 2021 10 9;32(10):2129-2133. Epub 2021 Sep 9.

Department of Chemistry, Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University, Sakyo, Kyoto 606-8501, Japan.

Phase transition is a promising aspect of DNA as biopolymers. Anionic DNA oligonucleotides easily form complexes with cationic polypeptides such as polylysine, and duplex formation significantly influences their complexation and resulting microcompartments. In this study, phase transition of microcompartments containing DNA and polylysine was systematically induced by modulating duplex formation of arylazopyrazole-conjugated oligonucleotides with light. We demonstrated that UV irradiation destabilized DNA duplex and generated isotropic coacervates, while duplex stabilization by visible light irradiation caused the formation of liquid crystalline coacervates. This photocontrol of phase transition was highly repeatable, and similar changes were observed even after ten cycles of light irradiation. Our approach would provide a robust control layer to the development of tailor-made microcompartments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.bioconjchem.1c00302DOI Listing
October 2021

Cross-sectional association between long working hours and endoscopic gastritis: the Kangbuk Samsung Health Study.

BMJ Open 2021 09 3;11(9):e050037. Epub 2021 Sep 3.

Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Kangbuk Samsung Hospital, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea

Objectives: This study aimed to determine the cross-sectional association between long working hours and gastritis diagnosed by endoscopy.

Design: Cross-sectional study.

Setting: Large university hospitals in Seoul and Suwon, South Korea.

Participants: Workers in formal employment who underwent a comprehensive health examination at the Kangbuk Samsung Hospital Total Healthcare Centre clinics in Seoul and Suwon, South Korea, between January 2011 and December 2018. Of the 386 488 participants, 168 391 full-time day workers met the inclusion criteria and were included in the analysis.

Primary Outcome Measure: Endoscopic gastritis.

Results: The participants were predominantly college graduates or above (88.9%), male (71.2%) and in their 30s (51.1%), and the median age was 36 (IQR 31-42). Approximately 93.2% of participants had positive endoscopic gastritis, and there was a significant association between working hours and positive findings of endoscopic gastritis. The multivariate fully adjusted prevalence ratio (PR) of endoscopic gastritis for participants working >55 hours per week compared with 35-40 hours per week was 1.011 (95% CI 1.007 to 1.015). Furthermore, endoscopic findings were classified into nine subtypes of gastritis, including superficial gastritis, erosive gastritis, atrophic gastritis, intestinal metaplasia and haemorrhagic gastritis increased with longer working hours (p for trends <0.05). Their PRs for participants working >55 hours per week compared with 35-40 hours per week were 1.019 (95% CI 1.012 to 1.026), 1.025 (95% CI 1.011 to 1.040), 1.017 (95% CI 1.008 to 1.027), 1.066 (95% CI 1.028 to 1.105) and 1.177 (95% CI 1.007 to 1.375), respectively.

Conclusions: Working over 55 hours per week was cross-sectionally associated with positive findings of endoscopic gastritis. The study findings indicated potentially increased risks of superficial gastritis, erosive gastritis, atrophic gastritis, intestinal metaplasia and haemorrhagic gastritis among workers with long working hours (>55 hours per week), supporting the need for further exploration via longitudinal studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2021-050037DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8420663PMC
September 2021

Synthesis and application of a F-labeled fluorescent nucleoside as a dual-mode probe for i-motif DNAs.

RSC Chem Biol 2021 Jun 10;2(3):876-882. Epub 2021 Mar 10.

Department of Chemistry, Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University Kitashirakawa-oiwakecho, Sakyo-ku Kyoto 606-8502 Japan

Because of their stable orientations and their minimal interference with native DNA interactions and folding, emissive isomorphic nucleoside analogues are versatile tools for the accurate analysis of DNA structural heterogeneity. Here, we report on a bifunctional trifluoromethylphenylpyrrolocytidine derivative () that displays an unprecedented quantum yield and highly sensitive F NMR signal. This is the first report of a cytosine-based dual-purpose probe for both fluorescence and F NMR spectroscopic DNA analysis. and -containing DNA were synthesized and characterized; our robust dual probe was successfully used to investigate the noncanonical DNA structure, i-motifs, through changes in fluorescence intensity and F chemical shift in response to i-motif formation. The utility of was exemplified through reversible fluorescence switching of an -containing i-motif oligonucleotide in the presence of Ag(i) and cysteine.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d1cb00020aDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8382138PMC
June 2021

An Indole-Based Fluorescent Chemosensor for Detecting Zn in Aqueous Media and Zebrafish.

Sensors (Basel) 2021 Aug 19;21(16). Epub 2021 Aug 19.

Department of Fine Chem and Renewable Energy Convergence, Seoul National University of Science and Technology (SNUT), Seoul 139-743, Korea.

An indole-based fluorescent chemosensor was synthesized to detect Zn. displayed a marked fluorescence increment with Zn. The detection limit (0.41 μM) of for Zn was greatly below that suggested by the World Health Organization. can quantify Zn in real water samples. More significantly, could determine and depict the presence of Zn in zebrafish. The detecting mechanism of toward Zn was illustrated by fluorescence and UV-visible spectroscopy, DFT calculations, H NMR titration and ESI mass.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/s21165591DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8402251PMC
August 2021

Plasma Based Protein Signatures Associated with Small Cell Lung Cancer.

Cancers (Basel) 2021 Aug 6;13(16). Epub 2021 Aug 6.

Department of Clinical Cancer Prevention, The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA.

Small-cell-lung cancer (SCLC) is associated with overexpression of oncogenes including Myc family genes and YAP1 and inactivation of tumor suppressor genes. We performed in-depth proteomic profiling of plasmas collected from 15 individuals with newly diagnosed early stage SCLC and from 15 individuals before the diagnosis of SCLC and compared findings with plasma proteomic profiles of 30 matched controls to determine the occurrence of signatures that reflect disease pathogenesis. A total of 272 proteins were elevated (area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) ≥ 0.60) among newly diagnosed cases compared to matched controls of which 31 proteins were also elevated (AUC ≥ 0.60) in case plasmas collected within one year prior to diagnosis. Ingenuity Pathway analyses of SCLC-associated proteins revealed enrichment of signatures of oncogenic MYC and YAP1. Intersection of proteins elevated in case plasmas with proteomic profiles of conditioned medium from 17 SCLC cell lines yielded 52 overlapping proteins characterized by YAP1-associated signatures of cytoskeletal re-arrangement and epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition. Among samples collected more than one year prior to diagnosis there was a predominance of inflammatory markers. Our integrated analyses identified novel circulating protein features in early stage SCLC associated with oncogenic drivers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cancers13163972DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8391533PMC
August 2021
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