Biochemistry Research International http://www.hindawi.com The latest articles from Hindawi Publishing Corporation © 2014 , Hindawi Publishing Corporation . All rights reserved. A Nonhost Peptidase Inhibitor of ~14 kDa from Butea monosperma (Lam.) Taub. Seeds Affects Negatively the Growth and Developmental Physiology of Helicoverpa armigera Thu, 17 Apr 2014 13:01:37 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2014/361821/ Helicoverpa armigera is one of the major devastating pests of crop plants. In this context a serine peptidase inhibitor purified from the seeds of Butea monosperma was evaluated for its effect on developmental physiology of H. armigera larvae. B. monosperma peptidase inhibitor on 12% denaturing polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis exhibited a single protein band of ~14 kDa with or without reduction. In vitro studies towards total gut proteolytic enzymes of H. armigera and bovine trypsin indicated measurable inhibitory activity. B. monosperma peptidase inhibitor dose for 50% mortality and weight reduction by 50% were 0.5% w/w and 0.10% w/w, respectively. The IC50 of B. monosperma peptidase inhibitor against total H. armigera gut proteinases activity was 2.0 µg/mL. The larval feeding assays suggested B. monosperma peptidase inhibitor to be toxic as reflected by its retarded growth and development, consequently affecting fertility and fecundity of pest and prolonging the larval-pupal duration of the insect life cycle of H. armigera. Supplementing B. monosperma peptidase inhibitor in artificial diet at 0.1% w/w, both the efficiencies of conversion of ingested as well as digested food were downregulated, whereas approximate digestibility and metabolic cost were enhanced. The efficacy of Butea monosperma peptidase inhibitor against progressive growth and development of H. armigera suggest its usefulness in insect pest management of food crops. Prabhash K. Pandey, Dushyant Singh, Sangram Singh, M. Y. Khan, and Farrukh Jamal Copyright © 2014 Prabhash K. Pandey et al. All rights reserved. Roles of the Oxidative Stress and ADMA in the Development of Deep Venous Thrombosis Sun, 13 Apr 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2014/703128/ Venous thromboembolism has multifactorial origin and occurs in the context of complex interactions between environmental and genetic predisposing factors. Oxidative stress plays an important role in the physiopathology of venous thrombosis. Current study examined the role of oxidative stress and asymmetric dimethylarginine in the development of DVT with the parameters such as serum malondialdehyde (MDA), glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px), catalase, ADMA, homocysteine, folic acid, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12 levels. Serum MDA levels were found significantly () high in patients with DVT compared with control group. Additionally, serum B6 levels were found significantly () low in patients with DVT compared with healthy volunteers. There were no significant differences between the groups in terms of the other parameters (). This study showed that patients with DVT have increased oxidative stress compared with the healthy volunteers whereas there was no significant difference between the groups in terms of serum ADMA levels. Thus serum ADMA levels seemed to be not related with development of DVT. Meral Ekim, M. Ramazan Sekeroglu, Ragıp Balahoroglu, Halil Ozkol, and Hasan Ekim Copyright © 2014 Meral Ekim et al. All rights reserved. Identification and Characterization of TEX101 in Bovine Epididymal Spermatozoa Thu, 10 Apr 2014 17:42:22 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2014/573293/ Several studies exhibit the presence of Ricinus Communis Agglutinin I (RCA) binding glycocalyx in mammalian spermatozoa. However, the molecular characterization of RCA binding glycocalyx in sperm membranes and its mechanism of action are poorly understood. The objective of the study was to identify and to characterize RCA binding glycoprotein of the bovine sperm plasma membranes (PM). Lectin blots of caput and cauda sperm PM revealed a 38 kDa polypeptide exhibiting the highest affinity to RCA among the several major RCA binding polypeptides. The 38 kDa RCA binding polypeptide of cauda sperm PM was purified and exhibited a charge train of three distinct spots with isoelectric points (pH 5.3 and 5.8). Proteomic identification yielded ten peptides that matched the sequence of Testis Expressed 101 protein (TEX101). Western blots data revealed that bovine sperm TEX101 is present in both testicular and epididymal sperm PM fractions. The native TEX101 polypeptide contains ~17 kDa N-linked oligosaccharides and the polypeptide is anchored to sperm membrane via a glycosylphosphatidylinositol lipid linkage. Immunofluorescence staining of sperm with anti-TEX101 demonstrated that the polypeptide is localized at the head of cauda sperm. Our biochemical results provide evidence on the presence of TEX101 in bovine epididymal sperm plasma membranes and may have a potential role in sperm-egg interaction. Subir K. Nagdas, Eric L. McLean, Leeá P. Richardson, and Samir Raychoudhury Copyright © 2014 Subir K. Nagdas et al. All rights reserved. A Comparative Study of Phase States of the Peribacteroid Membrane from Yellow Lupin and Broad Bean Nodules Thu, 03 Apr 2014 08:57:43 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2014/527393/ A comparative study of the lipid bilayer phase status and structure of the outer membrane of free-living Bradyrhizobium strain 359a (Nod+Fix+) and 400 (Nod+FixL) or Rhizobium leguminosarum 97 (Nod+Fix+, effective) and 87 (Nod+FixL, ineffective) has been carried out. Also, the effect of the symbiotic pair combination on the lipid bilayer structure of the bacteroid outer membrane and peribacteroid membrane, isolated from the nodules of Lupinus luteus L. or Vicia faba L., has been studied. As a result, it is shown that the lipid bilayer status of the bacteroid outer membrane is mainly determined by microsymbiont, but not the host plant. In the contrast, the lipid bilayer status of the peribacteroid membrane and, as a consequence, its properties depend on interaction of both symbiotic partners. Natalia N. Kudryavtseva, Alexis V. Sof’in, Georgiy S. Bobylev, and Evgeny M. Sorokin Copyright © 2014 Natalia N. Kudryavtseva et al. All rights reserved. Adaptation of Sonication-Assisted Matrix Solid Phase Dispersion of Tissues for the Subsequent Extraction of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons from Gulf Menhaden (Brevoortia patronus) Sun, 09 Mar 2014 10:13:48 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2014/925684/ A new adaptation based on matrix solid phase dispersion of tissue for the subsequent isolation of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons was developed and used for extractions of Gulf menhaden caught during the summer of 2011. Many Matrix Solid Phase Dispersion (MSPD) methods require specific cartridges and other clean-up materials in order to achieve proper extraction. For this study, the tissues were lyophilized prior to applying the adapted MSPD method allowing for a much more complete homogenization with the C18 silica. The tissue was spiked with phenanthrene d10 as a surrogate as a measure of PAH recovery prior to the lyophilisation process to determine if any target compounds were lost and prior to sonication as per the finalized adaptation procedure to determine method efficiency. This technique used C18 silica in a 1 : 1 ratio as the primary homogenizing material for the menhaden tissue matrix and was eluted with dichloromethane (DCM) until visibly clear. The overall study mean recovery was with method detection limits between 0.4 ng/g and 4.4 ng/g tissue dry weight. This adapted protocol has been used exclusively on the analysis of high lipid content fish stocks affected by dispersed and weathered oil from the BP Horizon incident. Gregory M. Olson, Buffy M. Meyer, and Ralph J. Portier Copyright © 2014 Gregory M. Olson et al. All rights reserved. Modeling Dendrimers Charge Interaction in Solution: Relevance in Biosystems Thu, 27 Feb 2014 07:00:20 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2014/837651/ Dendrimers are highly branched macromolecules obtained by stepwise controlled, reaction sequences. The ability to be designed for specific applications makes dendrimers unprecedented components to control the structural organization of matter during the bottom-up synthesis of functional nanostructures. For their applications in the field of biotechnology the determination of dendrimer structural properties as well as the investigation of the specific interaction with guest components are needed. We show how the analysis of the scattering structure factor S(q), in the framework of current models for charged systems in solution, allows for obtaining important information of the interdendrimers electrostatic interaction potential. The finding of the presented results outlines the important role of the dendrimer charge and the solvent conditions in regulating, through the modulation of the electrostatic interaction potential, great part of the main structural properties. This charge interaction has been indicated by many studies as a crucial factor for a wide range of structural processes involving their biomedical application. Due to their easily controllable properties dendrimers can be considered at the crossroad between traditional colloids, associating polymers, and biological systems and represent then an interesting new technological approach and a suitable model system of molecular organization in biochemistry and related fields. Domenico Lombardo Copyright © 2014 Domenico Lombardo. All rights reserved. Expression of uPA, tPA, and PAI-1 in Calcified Aortic Valves Mon, 17 Feb 2014 06:52:35 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2014/658643/ Purpose. Our physiopathological assumption is that u-PA, t-PA, and PAI-1 are released by calcified aortic valves and play a role in the calcification of these valves. Methods. Sixty-five calcified aortic valves were collected from patients suffering from aortic stenosis. Each valve was incubated for 24 hours in culture medium. The supernatants were used to measure u-PA, t-PA, and PAI-1 concentrations; the valve calcification was evaluated using biphotonic absorptiometry. Results. Aortic stenosis valves expressed normal plasminogen activators concentrations and overexpressed PAI-1 (u-PA, t-PA, and PAI-1 mean concentrations were, resp., 1.69 ng/mL ± 0.80, 2.76 ng/mL ± 1.33, and 53.27 ng/mL ± 36.39). There was no correlation between u-PA and PAI-1 () but t-PA and PAI-1 were strongly correlated with each other (). Overexpression of PAI-1 was proportional to the calcium content of the AS valves. Conclusions. Our results demonstrate a consistent increase of PAI-1 proportional to the calcification. The overexpression of PAI-1 may be useful as a predictive indicator in patients with aortic stenosis. Najlah Kochtebane, Abdullah Mossa M. Alzahrani, and Aghleb Bartegi Copyright © 2014 Najlah Kochtebane et al. All rights reserved. Combination Therapies for the Treatment of Advanced Melanoma: A Review of Current Evidence Wed, 12 Feb 2014 10:07:43 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2014/307059/ The treatment of advanced melanoma has been revolutionised in recent years with the advent of a range of new therapies. BRAF inhibitors, such as vemurafenib, have demonstrated improvements in the overall survival of patients with advanced melanoma that harbour a BRAF V600 mutation. Alongside these targeted therapies, novel immune-checkpoint inhibitors, such as ipilimumab, have also been developed and have produced similarly improved outcomes for patients. For the first time in the history of melanoma, monotherapy with each of these drugs has produced improvements in the overall survival of patients with advanced disease. Building on this initial success, there has been intense interest in developing combination therapies predominantly with either dual blockade of the MAPK oncogenic pathway or dual immune-checkpoint blockade. The current evidence for the use of these combination therapies will be presented here. Mark Voskoboynik and Hendrik-Tobias Arkenau Copyright © 2014 Mark Voskoboynik and Hendrik-Tobias Arkenau. All rights reserved. Production and Partial Purification of Alpha Amylase from Bacillus subtilis (MTCC 121) Using Solid State Fermentation Sun, 12 Jan 2014 12:48:47 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2014/568141/ Amylase is an enzyme that catalyzes the breakdown of starch into sugars and plays a pivotal role in a variety of areas like use as digestives, for the production of ethanol and high fructose corn syrup, detergents, desiring of textiles, modified starches, hydrolysis of oil-field drilling fluids, and paper recycling. In the present work, solid state fermentation (SSF) for α-amylase production has been used in lieu of submerged fermentation (SmF) due to its simple technique, low capital investment, lower levels of catabolite repression, and better product recovery. Bacillus subtilis has been well known as producer of alpha amylase and was tested using solid state fermentation for 48 hours at 37°C with wheat bran as substrate. Comparison between different fermentation hours demonstrated high yield of alpha amylase after 48 hours. This alpha amylase has optimum pH and temperature at 7.1 and 40°C, respectively. With the goal to purify alpha amylase, 30–70% (NH4)2SO4 cut concentrated the amylase activity threefold with respect to crude fermented extract. This was verified in quantitative DNS assay method as well as in zymogram gel profile. The exact molecular weight of the amylase is yet to be determined with the aid of other protein purification techniques. Dibyangana Raul, Tania Biswas, Suchita Mukhopadhyay, Shrayan Kumar Das, and Suvroma Gupta Copyright © 2014 Dibyangana Raul et al. All rights reserved. Reference Ranges for Serum Uric Acid among Healthy Assamese People Thu, 09 Jan 2014 13:15:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2014/171053/ This study was designed to establish reference ranges for serum uric acid among healthy adult Assamese population. Samples from 1470 aged 35–86 years were used to establish age and sex related reference range by the centile method (central 95 percentile) for serum uric acid level. There were 51% () males and 49% () females; 75.9% () of them were from urban area and the rest 24.1% () were from the rural area. Majority of the population were nonvegetarian (98.6%, ) and only 1.4% () were vegetarian. The mean age, weight, height, and uric acid of the studied group were years,  kg,  cm, and  mg/dL, respectively. There is a statistically significant difference in the mean value of the abovementioned parameters between male and female. The observed reference range of uric acid in the population is 2.6–8.2 mg/dL which is wider than the current reference range used in the laboratory. Except gender (), we did not find any significant relation of uric acid with other selected factors. Madhumita Das, N. C. Borah, M. Ghose, and N. Choudhury Copyright © 2014 Madhumita Das et al. All rights reserved. Community Based Assessment of Biochemical Risk Factors for Cardiovascular Diseases in Rural and Tribal Area of Himalayan Region, India Sun, 22 Dec 2013 09:47:28 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/696845/ Context. Evident change in nutrition and lifestyle among individuals of urban and rural areas raises suspicion for similar change in tribal area population of India. Aim. To study the biochemical risk factor for CVDs in rural and tribal population of Sub-Himalayan state of India. Settings and Design. Cross-sectional study in rural (low altitude) and tribal (high altitude) area of Himachal Pradesh, India. Methodology. Blood lipid profile using standard laboratory methods. Statistical Analysis. Chi-square test and multiple linear regression analysis. Results. Total of 900 individuals were studied in both areas. As per Asian criteria, obesity (BMI 27.5–30.0 kg/m2) was observed to be significantly high () as 13.7% in tribal area as compared to 5.5% in rural area. Normal level of TC (<200 mg/dL) and LDL (<130 mg/dL) was observed in the majority of the population of both areas, whereas, at risk level of HDL (<40 mg/dL) was present in half of the population of both rural and tribal areas. The prevalence of borderline to high level of TGs was observed to be 60.2% and 55.2% in rural and tribal () area, respectively. Conclusion. Prevalent abnormal lipid profile in tribal area demands establishment of an effective surveillance system for development of chronic diseases. Ashok Kumar Bhardwaj, Dinesh Kumar, Sunil Kumar Raina, Pradeep Bansal, Satya Bhushan, and Vishav Chander Copyright © 2013 Ashok Kumar Bhardwaj et al. All rights reserved. Protective Effect of Theaflavin on Erythrocytes Subjected to In Vitro Oxidative Stress Sat, 21 Dec 2013 12:42:38 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/649759/ Antioxidant and free radical scavenging effect of black tea theaflavins has been shown in many epidemiological studies. In the present work we report the protective mechanism of tea theaflavins on biomarkers of oxidative stress, which are elevated during stress conditions. We hereby report the in vitro effect of theaflavins on erythrocyte malondialdehyde (MDA), intracellular reduced glutathione (GSH), and plasma membrane redox system (PMRS) of rats. The effect of theaflavin on PMRS has also been validated through an in silico docking simulation study using Molegro Virtual Docker (MVD). We report that theaflavins show significant protection to erythrocyte against oxidative stress induced by tert-butyl hydroperoxide (t-BHP). The findings suggest a possible protective role of theaflavins as antioxidant. Mahejabeen Fatima, Rajesh Kumar Kesharwani, Krishna Misra, and Syed Ibrahim Rizvi Copyright © 2013 Mahejabeen Fatima et al. All rights reserved. Jatropha Oil Derived Sophorolipids: Production and Characterization as Laundry Detergent Additive Sat, 21 Dec 2013 12:35:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/169797/ Sophorolipids (SLs) are glycolipidic biosurfactants suitable for various biological and physicochemical applications. The nonedible Jatropha oil has been checked as the alternative raw material for SL synthesis using C. bombicola (ATCC22214). This is useful towards lowering the SL production cost. Through optimization of fermentation parameters and use of resting cell method, the yield 15.25 g/L could be achieved for Jatropha oil derived SL (SLJO) with 1% v/v oil feeding. The synthesized SL displayed good surfactant property. It reduced the surface tension of distilled water from 70.7 mN/m to 33.5 mN/m with the Critical Micelle Concentration (CMC) value of 9.5 mg/L. Keeping the prospective use of the SL in mind, the physicochemical properties were checked along with emulsion stability under temperature, pH stress, and in hard water. Also antibacterial action and stain removal capability in comparison with commercial detergent was demonstrated. SLJO enhanced the detergent performance. Based on the results, it can be said that SLs have utility as fabric cleaner with advantageous properties such as skin friendly nature, antibacterial action, and biodegradability. Therefore SLs are potential green molecules to replace synthetic surfactants in detergents so as to reduce harm caused to environment through detergent usage. Kasturi Joshi-Navare, Poonam Khanvilkar, and Asmita Prabhune Copyright © 2013 Kasturi Joshi-Navare et al. All rights reserved. Penetration of Milk-Derived Antimicrobial Peptides into Phospholipid Monolayers as Model Biomembranes Tue, 17 Dec 2013 13:48:08 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/914540/ Three antimicrobial peptides derived from bovine milk proteins were examined with regard to penetration into insoluble monolayers formed with 1,2-dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DPPC) or 1,2-dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3-phospho-rac-(1-glycerol) sodium salt (DPPG). Effects on surface pressure () and electric surface potential () were measured, with a platinum Wilhelmy plate and with a vibrating plate. The penetration measurements were performed under stationary diffusion conditions and upon the compression of the monolayers. The two type measurements showed greatly different effects of the peptide-lipid interactions. Results of the stationary penetration show that the peptide interactions with DPPC monolayer are weak, repulsive, and nonspecific while the interactions with DPPG monolayer are significant, attractive, and specific. These results are in accord with the fact that antimicrobial peptides disrupt bacteria membranes (negative) while no significant effect on the host membranes (neutral) is observed. No such discrimination was revealed from the compression isotherms. The latter indicate that squeezing the penetrant out of the monolayer upon compression does not allow for establishing the penetration equilibrium, so the monolayer remains supersaturated with the penetrant and shows an under-equilibrium orientation within the entire compression range, practically. Wanda Barzyk, Ewa Rogalska, and Katarzyna Więcław-Czapla Copyright © 2013 Wanda Barzyk et al. All rights reserved. Effect of Different Stages of Chronic Kidney Disease and Renal Replacement Therapies on Oxidant-Antioxidant Balance in Uremic Patients Thu, 12 Dec 2013 15:59:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/358985/ Oxidative stress seems to be involved in the path physiology of cardiovascular complications of chronic kidney disease (CKD). In this study, we determined the effect of different stages of CKD and substitutive therapies on oxidative stress. One hundred sixty-seven patients (age: years; male/female: 76/91) with CKD were divided into 6 groups according to the National Kidney Foundation classification. Prooxidant status was assessed by assaying thiobarbituric acid reactive substances, hydroperoxides, and protein carbonyls. Antioxidant defence was performed by analysis of superoxide dismutase, catalase, glutathione peroxidase, glutathione reductase, vitamin E, Iron, and bilirubin. TBARS and LPO were higher in HD patients compared to other groups (), while protein carbonyls were more increased in PD patients. The antioxidant enzymes were declined already at severe stage of CKD and they were declined notably in HD patients (). Similar observation was found for vitamin E, Fe, and bilirubin where we observed a significant decrease in the majority of study groups, especially in HD patients (). The evolution of CKD was associated with elevated OS. HD accentuates lipid, while PD aggravates protein oxidation. However, the activity of antioxidant enzymes was altered by impaired renal function and by both dialysis treatments. Hadja Fatima Tbahriti, Abbou Kaddous, Malika Bouchenak, and Khedidja Mekki Copyright © 2013 Hadja Fatima Tbahriti et al. All rights reserved. Acetylcholinesterase Biosensors for Electrochemical Detection of Organophosphorus Compounds: A Review Mon, 09 Dec 2013 15:38:40 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/731501/ The exponentially growing population, with limited resources, has exerted an intense pressure on the agriculture sector. In order to achieve high productivity the use of pesticide has increased up to many folds. These pesticides contain organophosphorus (OP) toxic compounds which interfere with the proper functioning of enzyme acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and finally affect the central nervous system (CNS). So, there is a need for routine, continuous, on spot detection of OP compounds which are the main limitations associated with conventional analytical methods. AChE based enzymatic biosensors have been reported by researchers as the most promising tool for analysis of pesticide level to control toxicity and for environment conservation. The present review summarises AChE based biosensors by discussing their characteristic features in terms of fabrication, detection limit, linearity range, time of incubation, and storage stability. Use of nanoparticles in recently reported fabrication strategies has improved the efficiency of biosensors to a great extent making them more reliable and robust. Vikas Dhull, Anjum Gahlaut, Neeraj Dilbaghi, and Vikas Hooda Copyright © 2013 Vikas Dhull et al. All rights reserved. Ameliorative Effects of Acacia Honey against Sodium Arsenite-Induced Oxidative Stress in Some Viscera of Male Wistar Albino Rats Tue, 03 Dec 2013 15:08:50 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/502438/ Cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide and its development is frequently associated with oxidative stress-induced by carcinogens such as arsenicals. Most foods are basically health-promoting or disease-preventing and a typical example of such type is honey. This study was undertaken to investigate the ameliorative effects of Acacia honey on sodium arsenite-induced oxidative stress in the heart, lung and kidney tissues of male Wistar rats. Male Wistar albino rats divided into four groups of five rats each were administered distilled water, Acacia honey (20%), sodium arsenite (5 mg/kg body weight), Acacia honey, and sodium arsenite daily for one week. They were sacrificed anesthetically using 60 mg/kg sodium pentothal. The tissues were used for the assessment of glutathione peroxidase, catalase, and superoxide dismutase activities, protein content and lipid peroxidation. Sodium arsenite significantly suppressed the glutathione peroxidase, catalase, superoxide dismutase activities with simultaneous induction of lipid peroxidation. Administration of Acacia honey significantly increased glutathione peroxidase, catalase, and superoxide dismutase activities with concomitant suppression of lipid peroxidation as evident by the decrease in malondialdehyde level. From the results obtained, Acacia honey mitigates sodium arsenite induced-oxidative stress in male Wistar albino rats, which suggest that it may attenuate oxidative stress implicated in chemical carcinogenesis. Muhammad Aliyu, Sani Ibrahim, Hajiya M. Inuwa, Abdullahi B. Sallau, Olagunju Abbas, Idowu A. Aimola, Nathan Habila, and Ndidi S. Uche Copyright © 2013 Muhammad Aliyu et al. All rights reserved. Prooxidant-Antioxidant Balance in Umbilical Cord Blood of Infants with Meconium Stained of Amniotic Fluid Thu, 28 Nov 2013 11:37:49 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/270545/ Objective. Using a novel assay termed prooxidant-antioxidant balance (PAB) assay to determine prooxidant-antioxidant balance in umbilical cord blood of infants with meconium stained of amniotic fluid (MSAF). Passage of meconium in amniotic fluid is associated with increase of neonatal mortality and morbidity. This complication occurs in about 15% of infants and is more widespread in postterm neonates. About 1.5 percent of neonates with MSAF develop meconium aspiration syndrome. Method. Sera of 29 umbilical cord blood of infants with MSAF and 32 healthy infants (HI) were collected. Both groups had nonsmoker and non-alcoholic mothers with no diseases. The PAB was measured. Result. There was a significant increase of PAB value ( HK) in umbilical cord blood of infants with MSAF in comparison to HI ( HK) (). There was no significant correlation between PAB value and age of mothers. Conclusion. The increased PAB value in infants with MSAF showed that these infants are exposed to oxidative stress. Further research with larger population is needed to demonstrate the oxidative stress in infants with MSAF. Mohammad Hassan Arjmand, Farhat Ahmad Shah, Masoud Saleh Moghadam, Fatemeh Tara, Amin Jalili, Mojtaba Mosavi Bazaz, and Daryoush Hamidi Alamdari Copyright © 2013 Mohammad Hassan Arjmand et al. All rights reserved. Long-Term Use of Probiotic-Containing Yogurts Is a Safe Way to Prevent Helicobacter pylori: Based on a Mongolian Gerbil's Model Thu, 21 Nov 2013 15:39:21 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/594561/ Background. The suppression of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) decreases H. pylori-related diseases. The probiotics have an inhibitory effect on H. pylori. Aim. We investigated the effects of long-term use of yogurt on H. pylori based on Mongolian gerbils’ model. Materials and Methods. Yogurt (containing a supplement of Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacterium lactis, etc.) was used. Forty-six gerbils were divided into five groups. All groups were inoculated with H. pylori for 5 to 8 weeks. The yogurt was given as follows: Group (Gr.) A: from 1st to 4th week; Gr. B from 5th to 8th week; Gr. C: from 17th week to sacrifice; Gr. D: from 5th week to sacrifice. Gerbils were sacrificed on the 52nd week. Histology was evaluated according to the Sydney system. Results. The positive rates of H. pylori were 60% (Gr. A), 75% (Gr. B), 67% (Gr. C), 44% (Gr. D), and 100% (Gr. E). Gr. D showed lower inflammatory score. Only Gr. E (60%) had intestinal metaplasia. Gr. D showed higher IL-10 and lower TNF-α expression than Gr. E. Conclusion. Long-term intake of yogurt could decrease H. pylori infection. The long-term use of yogurt would be an alternative strategy to manage H. pylori infection. Chao-Hung Kuo, Sophie S. W. Wang, Chien-Yu Lu, Huang-Ming Hu, Fu-Chen Kuo, Bi-Chuang Weng, Chun-Chieh Wu, Chung-Jung Liu, Pei-Yun Tsai, Tsung-Cheng Lee, Li-Wei Chen, Kuang-Hung Cheng, Lin-Li Chang, and Deng-Chyang Wu Copyright © 2013 Chao-Hung Kuo et al. All rights reserved. Determination of Coverage Interval of Antioxidant Vitamins (Vitamin C & Vitamin E) in Plasma and Serum of Bengali Population Thu, 14 Nov 2013 18:17:47 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/590791/ Reference interval of all haematological and biological analytes should be measured for every population because of the huge diversity in genetic make-up, dietary habits. The coverage interval of antioxidant vitamins (vitamin C and α-tocopherol) in the plasma and serum of reference Bengali population was determined and compared with the reference intervals of antioxidant vitamins in the established literature. Adult healthy volunteers from 18 to 68 years of age underwent extensive clinical and investigational procedure and were included in the study. Vitamin C and α-tocopherol were estimated using simple Spectrophotometric method. Of the 71 healthy Bengali volunteers participated, 31 were males and 40 were females. The mean concentration of plasma vitamin C was found to be 0.65 mg/dL. The mean α-tocopherol was found 6.35 mg/L (14.74 μmol/L) in the study population higher than the normal threshold value for α-tocopherol but lower than other populations. The study data enabled us to determine the gender nonspecific coverage interval of antioxidant vitamins, and the intervals were lower than the established reference interval in other populations. Sanghamitra Chakraborty and Indranil Chakraborty Copyright © 2013 Sanghamitra Chakraborty and Indranil Chakraborty. All rights reserved. Inhibition of Rat Muscle and Liver Phosphofructokinases by High Doses of Ethanol Wed, 13 Nov 2013 13:33:01 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/495135/ Activities of both rat muscle and liver phosphofructokinases are significantly inhibited after a single ethanol intake in the dose of 2.5 g per kg of body weight. This inhibitory effect is indirect, since ethanol in concentration (50 mM) close to that established after 2.5 g per kg of body weight intake cannot decrease their activities in vitro. Inhibition of liver phosphofructokinase activity after the 5.0 g per kg ethanol intake may be direct, since liver phosphofructokinase activity decreases in vitro when ethanol is added to supernatants of rat liver tissue in 100 mM concentration. According to the results of molecular docking, ethanol at high concentrations can be bound by adenine-binding pocket of the allosteric ADP-binding site of liver phosphofructokinase (Asp543, Phe308, Phe538, and Phe671) and its activation by ADP can be blocked by C2H5OH molecule. Direct inhibition of muscle phosphofructokinase activity, probably due to the binding of ethanol to the similar ADP-binding site, is possible when the concentration of ethanol (500 mM) is much higher than the level which can be established in living cells. So, inhibition of muscle phosphofructokinase activity after a single 5.0 g per kg intake is indirect and probably linked with the inhibition of the enzyme by elevated citrate and phosphoenolpyruvate levels. Sergey Vladimirovich Lelevich, Vladislav Victorovich Khrustalev, and Eugene Victorovich Barkovsky Copyright © 2013 Sergey Vladimirovich Lelevich et al. All rights reserved. Escin Chemosensitizes Human Pancreatic Cancer Cells and Inhibits the Nuclear Factor-kappaB Signaling Pathway Sun, 27 Oct 2013 14:07:26 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/251752/ Background. There is an urgent need to develop new treatment strategies and drugs for pancreatic cancer that is highly resistant to radio-chemotherapy. Aesculus hippocastanum (the horse chestnut) known in Chinese medicine as a plant with anti-inflammatory, antiedema, antianalgesic, and antipyretic activities. The main active compound of this plant is Escin (C54H84O23). Objective. To evaluate the effect of Escin alone and combined with chemotherapy on pancreatic cancer cell survival and to unravel mechanism(s) of Escin anticancer activity. Methods. Cell survival was measured by XTT colorimetric assay. Synergistic effect of combined therapy was determined by CalcuSyn software. Cell cycle and induction of apoptosis were evaluated by FACS analysis. Expression of NF-κB-related proteins (p65, IκB, and p-IκB) and cyclin D was evaluated by western blot analysis. Results. Escin decreased the survival of pancreatic cancer cells with IC50 = 10–20 M. Escin combined with gemcitabine showed only additive effect, while its combination with cisplatin resulted in a significant synergistic cytotoxic effect in Panc-1 cells. High concentrations of Escin induced apoptosis and decreased NF-κB-related proteins and cyclin D expression. Conclusions. Escin decreased pancreatic cancer cell survival, induced apoptosis, and downregulated NF-κB signaling pathway. Moreover, Escin sensitized pancreatic cancer cells to chemotherapy. Further translational research is required. A. Rimmon, A. Vexler, L. Berkovich, G. Earon, I. Ron, and S. Lev-Ari Copyright © 2013 A. Rimmon et al. All rights reserved. Collagen Content in Skin and Internal Organs of the Tight Skin Mouse: An Animal Model of Scleroderma Thu, 24 Oct 2013 18:42:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/436053/ The Tight Skin mouse is a genetically induced animal model of tissue fibrosis caused by a large in-frame mutation in the gene encoding fibrillin-1 (Fbn-1). We examined the influence of gender on the collagen content of tissues in C57BL/6J wild type (+/+) and mutant Tight Skin (Tsk/+) mice employing hydroxyproline assays. Tissue sections were stained with Masson’s trichrome to identify collagen in situ. Adult Tsk/+ mice skin contains ~15% more collagen, on average, than skin from +/+ mice of the same gender. The heart of Tsk/+ males had significantly more collagen than that of +/+ males. No significant gender differences were found in lungs and kidney collagen content. Overall, the collagen content of Tsk/+ males and +/+ males was higher than that of their Tsk/+ and +/+ female counterparts, respectively. Our data confirm increased deposition of collagen in skin and hearts of Tsk/+ mice; however, the effects of the Tsk mutation on collagen content are both tissue specific and gender specific. These results indicate that comparative studies of collagen content between normal and Tsk/+ mice skin and internal organs must take into account gender differences caused by expression of the androgen receptor. Jayanthi Manne, Marina Markova, Linda D. Siracusa, and Sergio A. Jimenez Copyright © 2013 Jayanthi Manne et al. All rights reserved. Evaluation of Mallotus oppositifolius Methanol Leaf Extract on the Glycaemia and Lipid Peroxidation in Alloxan-Induced Diabetic Rats: A Preliminary Study Thu, 10 Oct 2013 11:28:30 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/527205/ Objective. Mallotus oppositifolius (Geiseler) Müll. Arg. (Euphorbiaceae) is folklorically used to “treat” diabetic conditions in some parts of Nigeria therefore the study, to investigate the extract of the leaves for activities on hyperglycaemia, lipid peroxidation, and increased cholesterol levels in vivo in alloxan diabetic rats as well as its potential antioxidant activity in vitro. Methods. Albino rats (240–280 g) were given an injection of 120 mg/kg body weight, i.p. of alloxan monohydrate. After 8 days, diabetic animals with elevated fasting blood glucose levels (>9 mmol/L) were considered and selected for the study. Results. Oral treatment with the extract administered every 12 h by gavage at doses of 100, 200, and 400 mg/kg of the extract to the test rats, for 14 days, resulted in a significant dose-dependent decrease in blood glucose levels from 12.82 ± 1.02 mmol/dL to 4.92 ± 2.01 mmol/dL at the highest dose of 400 mg/kg compared to the control drug and glibenclamide as well as attendant significant decline in diabetic rats employed in the study. Conclusion. The extract also showed in vitro concentration-dependent antioxidant activity following the 1,1-diphenyl-2-picryl-hydrazyl (DPPH) and ferric reducing assays. Findings further suggest the presence of active antidiabetic and antioxidant principles in M. oppositifolius leaves. C. O. Nwaehujor, I. I. Ezeigbo, and F. C. Nwinyi Copyright © 2013 C. O. Nwaehujor et al. All rights reserved. Risk of Cardiovascular Diseases in Diabetes Mellitus and Serum Concentration of Asymmetrical Dimethylarginine Thu, 26 Sep 2013 12:05:45 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/189430/ Introduction. Asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA) is a nonselective nitric oxide (NO) synthase inhibitor associated with cardiovascular and metabolic disorders. ADMA plays an important role in the regulation of vascular tone by acting as an endogenous inhibitor of NO synthesis. Objectives. This study aimed to investigate ADMA with respect to diabetes and its clinical relevance as an independent predictor of CAD (Coronary Artery Disease). Methodology. The present case control study includes two hundred and forty patients selected randomly. Serum ADMA was analyzed by using enzyme immunoassay for the quantitative determination of endogenous ADMA, and serum nitric oxide was estimated by the method of Cortes. Results. Elevated NO level levels was a strong predictor and significantly (: 9.86, ) associated with occurrence of CAD. Increased ADMA level was found to be another strong predictor and associated significantly (: 8.02, ) with CAD. On intra group analysis, the relationship between ADMA and NO in diseased group, is significant negative correlation (). (0.001) was found between ADMA and NO. Conclusion. ADMA level was found to be one of the strong predictors for CAD. ADMA is an emerging independent risk marker for future CVD (cardiovascular disease) events. Seema L. Jawalekar, Aarti Karnik, and Anil Bhutey Copyright © 2013 Seema L. Jawalekar et al. All rights reserved. Nearest-Neighbor Interactions and Their Influence on the Structural Aspects of Dipeptides Wed, 18 Sep 2013 10:12:05 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/939865/ In this theoretical study, the role of the side chain moiety of C-terminal residue in influencing the structural and molecular properties of dipeptides is analyzed by considering a series of seven dipeptides. The C-terminal positions of the dipeptides are varied with seven different amino acid residues, namely. Val, Leu, Asp, Ser, Gln, His, and Pyl while their N-terminal positions are kept constant with Sec residues. Full geometry optimization and vibrational frequency calculations are carried out at B3LYP/6-311++G(d,p) level in gas and aqueous phase. The stereo-electronic effects of the side chain moieties of C-terminal residues are found to influence the values of and dihedrals, planarity of the peptide planes, and geometry around the C7  -carbon atoms of the dipeptides. The gas phase intramolecular H-bond combinations of the dipeptides are similar to those in aqueous phase. The theoretical vibrational spectra of the dipeptides reflect the nature of intramolecular H-bonds existing in the dipeptide structures. Solvation effects of aqueous environment are evident on the geometrical parameters related to the amide planes, dipole moments, HOMOLUMO energy gaps as well as thermodynamic stability of the dipeptides. Gunajyoti Das and Shilpi Mandal Copyright © 2013 Gunajyoti Das and Shilpi Mandal. All rights reserved. A Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationship and Molecular Modeling Study on a Series of Heteroaryl- and Heterocyclyl-Substituted Imidazo[1,2-a]Pyridine Derivatives Acting as Acid Pump Antagonists Sun, 08 Sep 2013 11:28:10 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/141469/ A quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) and molecular docking study has been performed on a series of heteroaryl- and heterocyclyl-substituted imidazo[1,2-a]pyridine derivatives acting as acid pump antagonists in order to have a better understanding of the mechanism of H+/K+-ATPase inhibition. The QSAR study shows a significant correlation of activity with Global Topological Charge Indices (GTCI) of the compounds and the hydrophobic constant of some substituents, indicating that the charge transfer within the molecule and the hydrophobic property of some substituents will be the controlling factor of the activity of these compounds and that there can be dispersion interaction between the molecules and the receptor, where some substituents may have hydrophobic interaction, too. Based on this correlation some new compounds with higher potency have been predicted and their docking study has been performed to see if they can have better interaction with the receptor. The ADME properties of these predicted compounds have also been reported that follow Lipinski’s rule of five. Neeraj Agarwal, Anubha Bajpai, and Satya P. Gupta Copyright © 2013 Neeraj Agarwal et al. All rights reserved. Cell Shape and Cardiosphere Differentiation: A Revelation by Proteomic Profiling Sun, 01 Sep 2013 15:31:43 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/730874/ Stem cells (embryonic stem cells, somatic stem cells such as neural stem cells, and cardiac stem cells) and cancer cells are known to aggregate and form spheroid structures. This behavior is common in undifferentiated cells and may be necessary for adapting to certain conditions such as low-oxygen levels or to maintain undifferentiated status in microenvironments including stem cell niches. In order to decipher the meaning of this spheroid structure, we established a cardiosphere clone (CSC-21E) derived from the rat heart which can switch its morphology between spheroid and nonspheroid. Two forms, floating cardiospheres and dish-attached flat cells, could be switched reversibly by changing the cell culture condition. We performed differential proteome analysis studies and obtained protein profiles distinct between spherical forms and flat cells. From protein profiling analysis, we found upregulation of glycolytic enzymes in spheroids with some stress proteins switched in expression levels between these two forms. Evidence has been accumulating that certain chaperone/stress proteins are upregulated in concert with cellular changes including proliferation and differentiation. We would like to discuss the possible mechanism of how these aggregates affect cell differentiation and/or other cellular functions. Nanako Kawaguchi, Mitsuyo Machida, Kota Hatta, Toshio Nakanishi, and Yohtaroh Takagaki Copyright © 2013 Nanako Kawaguchi et al. All rights reserved. Association of a Common Variant at 10q26 and Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia Aggressiveness in Han Chinese Descent Thu, 01 Aug 2013 08:07:31 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/820849/ Recent studies reported that rs2252004 at 10q26 was significantly associated with prostate cancer (PCa) risk in a Japanese population and was subsequently confirmed in a Chinese population. We aimed to assess the relationship between this locus and risk/aggressiveness of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). The current study included 426 BPH cases and 1,008 controls from Xinhua Hospital in Shanghai, China. All BPH patients were treated with α-adrenergic blockers and 5α-reductase inhibitors for at least 9 months. Associations between rs2252004 and BPH risk/aggressiveness were tested using logistic regression. Associations between rs2252004 and clinical parameters including International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS), total prostate volume (TPV), total PSA (tPSA), and free PSA (fPSA) were evaluated by linear regression. Allele “A” in rs2252004 was significantly associated with increased risk for aggressiveness of BPH in a Chinese population (OR = 1.42, 95% CI: 1.04–1.96, ). Patients with the genotype “A/A” (homozygous minor allele) had an increase of IPSS and TPV after treatment ( and 0.024, resp.). No association was observed between rs2252004, BPH risk, and baseline clinicopathological traits (All ). Our study is the first to show that rs2252004 at 10q26 was associated with BPH aggressiveness and efficacy of BPH treatment. Xin Gu, Tao Huang, Ding Xu, Liujian Duan, Yang Jiao, Jian Kang, S. Lilly Zheng, Jianfeng Xu, Jielin Sun, and Jun Qi Copyright © 2013 Xin Gu et al. All rights reserved. Genetic Basis for Variation of Metalloproteinase-Associated Biochemical Activity in Venom of the Mojave Rattlesnake (Crotalus scutulatus scutulatus) Mon, 29 Jul 2013 09:33:37 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bri/2013/251474/ The metalloproteinase composition and biochemical profiles of rattlesnake venom can be highly variable among rattlesnakes of the same species. We have previously shown that the neurotoxic properties of the Mojave rattlesnake (Crotalus scutulatus scutulatus) are associated with the presence of the Mojave toxin A subunit suggesting the existence of a genetic basis for rattlesnake venom composition. In this report, we hypothesized the existence of a genetic basis for intraspecies variation in metalloproteinase-associated biochemical properties of rattlesnake venom of the Mojave rattlesnake. To address this question, we PCR-amplified and compared the genomic DNA nucleotide sequences that code for the mature metalloproteinase domain of fourteen Mojave rattlesnakes captured from different geographical locations across the southwest region of the United States. In addition, the venoms from the same rattlesnakes were tested for their ability to hydrolyze fibrinogen, fibrin, casein, and hide powder azure and for induction of hemorrhage in mice. Overall, based on genomic sequencing and biochemical data, we classified Mojave rattlesnake venom into four distinct groups of metalloproteinases. These findings indicate that differences in nucleotide sequences encoding the mature proteinase domain and noncoding regions contribute to differences in venom metalloproteinase activities among rattlesnakes of the same species. Ruben K. Dagda, Sardar Gasanov, Ysidro De La OIII, Eppie D. Rael, and Carl S. Lieb Copyright © 2013 Ruben K. Dagda et al. All rights reserved.