Biochemistry Research International The latest articles from Hindawi Publishing Corporation © 2016 , Hindawi Publishing Corporation . All rights reserved. Production and Characterization of Highly Thermostable β-Glucosidase during the Biodegradation of Methyl Cellulose by Fusarium oxysporum Mon, 08 Feb 2016 12:06:58 +0000 Production of β-glucosidase from Fusarium oxysporum was investigated during degradation of some cellulosic substrates (Avicel, α-cellulose, carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC), and methylcellulose). Optimized production of β-glucosidase using the cellulosic substrate that supported highest yield of enzyme was examined over 192 h fermentation period and varied pH of 3.0–11.0. The β-glucosidase produced was characterized for its suitability for industrial application. Methyl cellulose supported the highest yield of β-glucosidase (177.5 U/mg) at pH 6.0 and 30°C at 96 h of fermentation with liberation of 2.121 μmol/mL glucose. The crude enzyme had optimum activity at pH 5.0 and 70°C. The enzyme was stable over broad pH range of 4.0–7.0 with relative residual activity above 60% after 180 min of incubation. β-glucosidase demonstrated high thermostability with 83% of its original activity retained at 70°C after 180 min of incubation. The activity of β-glucosidase was enhanced by Mn2+ and Fe2+ with relative activities of 167.67% and 205.56%, respectively, at 5 mM and 360% and 315%, respectively, at 10 mM. The properties shown by β-glucosidase suggest suitability of the enzyme for industrial applications in the improvement of hydrolysis of cellulosic compounds into fermentable sugars that can be used in energy generation and biofuel production. Folasade M. Olajuyigbe, Chidinma M. Nlekerem, and Olusola A. Ogunyewo Copyright © 2016 Folasade M. Olajuyigbe et al. All rights reserved. Contribution of Cell Surface Hydrophobicity in the Resistance of Staphylococcus aureus against Antimicrobial Agents Sun, 07 Feb 2016 06:50:05 +0000 Staphylococcus aureus is found in a wide variety of habitats, including human skin, where many strains are commensals that may be clinically significant or contaminants of food. To determine the physiological characteristics of resistant strain of Staphylococcus aureus against pediocin, a class IIa bacteriocin, a resistant strain was compared with wild type in order to investigate the contribution of hydrophobicity to this resistance. Additional clumping of resistant strain relative to wild type in light microscopy was considered as an elementary evidence of resistance attainment. A delay in log phase attainment was observed in resistant strain compared to the wild type strain. A significant increase in cell surface hydrophobicity was detected for resistant strain in both hexadecane and xylene indicating the contribution of cell surface hydrophobicity as adaptive reaction against antimicrobial agents. Puja Lather, A. K. Mohanty, Pankaj Jha, and Anita Kumari Garsa Copyright © 2016 Puja Lather et al. All rights reserved. Differences in GPR30 Regulation by Chlorotriazine Herbicides in Human Breast Cells Wed, 03 Feb 2016 07:22:59 +0000 Over 200,000 cases of invasive breast cancer are diagnosed annually; herbicide contaminants in local water sources may contribute to the growth of these cancers. GPR30, a G protein coupled receptor, was identified as a potential orphan receptor that may interact with triazine herbicides such as atrazine, one of the most commonly utilized chlorotriazines in agricultural practices in the United States. Our goal was to identify whether chlorotriazines affected the expression of GPR30. Two breast cancer cell lines, MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7, as well as one normal breast cell line, MCF-10A, were treated with a 100-fold range of atrazine, cyanazine, or simazine, with levels flanking the EPA safe level for each compound. Using real-time PCR, we assessed changes in GPR30 mRNA compared to a GAPDH control. Our results indicate that GPR30 expression increased in breast cancer cells at levels lower than the US EPA drinking water contamination limit. During this treatment, the viability of cells was unaltered. In contrast, treatment with chlorotriazines reduced the expression of GPR30 in noncancerous MCF-10A cells. Thus, our results indicate that cell milieu and potential to metastasize may play a role in the extent of GPR30 response to pesticide exposure. Colin P. Florian, Shelly R. Mansfield, and Jennifer R. Schroeder Copyright © 2016 Colin P. Florian et al. All rights reserved. Lipidomic Modulation in Stressed Albino Rats Is Altered by Yolk and Albumen of Quail (Coturnix japonica) Egg and Poultry Feed Thu, 28 Jan 2016 13:27:23 +0000 Cold and immobilization stressors can generate oxidative stress as well as skeletal muscle fatigue. Free radicals cause oxidative degradation of lipids, proteins, nucleic acids, and carbohydrates molecules, thereby compromising cell integrity and function. Quail egg had been described as being very functional biochemically, due to the essential biomolecules it contains in very regulated quantity. This study was aimed for evaluating the dietary effect of the egg on lipid profile parameters on selected tissues. The antilipidemic properties of the egg yolk and albumen and poultry (layers) feed were determined in selected tissues in male albino rats assaulted with cold immobilization stress induced on them at 4°C for 2 hours, while diazepam was used as standard antistress drug. Antilipidemic activities were evaluated by lipid profile modulation (HDL, LDL, TRIG., and T-CHOL.). Quantitative and qualitative analyses of fatty acids profile of the yolk hexane-extract were determined by Gas Chromatography and Mass Spectrophotometry (GC-MS). The ameliorative impacts of diazepam (2.5 and 5.0 mg/mL/kg BW), yolk (5 and 10 mL/kg BW), albumen (5 and 10 mL/kg BW), and the feed (5–10 mg/kg BW) were competitively () specific for each of the tissues. The result of the study suggested yolk and albumen of quail egg and poultry feed as antistress agents as well as lipid modulators. Emmanuel Oluwafemi Ibukun and Gideon Oludare Oladipo Copyright © 2016 Emmanuel Oluwafemi Ibukun and Gideon Oludare Oladipo. All rights reserved. Inactivation of Anopheles gambiae Glutathione Transferase ε2 by Epiphyllocoumarin Tue, 26 Jan 2016 16:15:34 +0000 Glutathione transferases (GSTs) are part of a major family of detoxifying enzymes that can catalyze the reductive dehydrochlorination of dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT). The delta and epsilon classes of insect GSTs have been implicated in conferring resistance to this insecticide. In this study, the inactivation of Anopheles gambiae GSTε2 by epiphyllocoumarin (Tral 1) was investigated. Recombinant AgGSTε2 was expressed in Escherichia coli cells containing a pET3a-AGSTε2 plasmid and purified by affinity chromatography. Tral 1 was shown to inactivate GSTε2 both in a time-dependent manner and in a concentration-dependent manner. The half-life of GSTε2 in the presence of 25 μM ethacrynic acid (ETA) was 22 minutes and with Tral 1 was 30 minutes, indicating that Tral 1 was not as efficient as ETA as an inactivator. The inactivation parameters and were found to be 0.020 ± 0.001 min−1 and 7.5 ± 2.1 μM, respectively, after 90 minutes of incubation. Inactivation of GSTε2 by Tral 1 implies that Tral 1 covalently binds to this enzyme in vitro and would be expected to exhibit time-dependent effects on the enzyme in vivo. Tral 1, therefore, would produce irreversible effects when used together with dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) in malaria control programmes where resistance is mediated by GSTs. Patience Marimo, Rose Hayeshi, and Stanley Mukanganyama Copyright © 2016 Patience Marimo et al. All rights reserved. Novel 4-Thiazolidinone Derivatives as Anti-Infective Agents: Synthesis, Characterization, and Antimicrobial Evaluation Tue, 26 Jan 2016 09:52:02 +0000 A series of new 4-thiazolidinone derivatives was synthesized, characterized by spectral techniques, and screened for antimicrobial activity. All the compounds were evaluated against five Gram-positive bacteria, two Gram-negative bacteria, and two fungi, at concentrations of 50, 100, 200, 400, 800, and 1600 µg/mL, respectively. Minimum inhibitory concentrations of all the compounds were also determined and were found to be in the range of 100–400 µg/mL. All the compounds showed moderate-to-good antimicrobial activity. Compounds 4a [2-(4-fluoro-phenyl)-3-(4-methyl-5,6,7,8-tetrahydro-quinazolin-2-yl)-thiazolidin-4-one] and 4e [3-(4,6-dimethyl-pyrimidin-2-yl)-2-(2-methoxy-phenyl)-thiazolidin-4-one] were the most potent compounds of the series, exhibiting marked antimicrobial activity against Pseudomonas fluorescens, Staphylococcus aureus, and the fungal strains. Thus, on the basis of results obtained, it may be concluded that synthesized compounds exhibit a broad spectrum of antimicrobial activity. Amit Gupta, Rajendra Singh, Pankaj K. Sonar, and Shailendra K. Saraf Copyright © 2016 Amit Gupta et al. All rights reserved. Evaluation of Early Markers of Nephropathy in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus Sun, 24 Jan 2016 12:31:38 +0000 Aims. T2DM often remains undiagnosed for many years because hyperglycemia develops gradually and may not produce any symptoms. As patients with T2DM are at increased risk of microvascular and macrovascular complications, the preclinical diagnosis of the state is the key point of the disease management. Methods. We evaluated parameters such as GAGs/PGs, NAG, and NGAL in urine samples from 43 normoalbuminuric T2DM patients and 31 apparently healthy control subjects. Results. The total urinary GAG excretion showed no significant differences between patients and controls. The electrophoretic analysis evidenced the presence of UTI and its degradation products (LSC and SM-LSC), CS, and HS. We observed modifications of HS and total UTI (including UTI and its degradation products) relative contents in T2DM patients compared with controls whereas no differences in CS percentage were found. NGAL levels were significantly increased in T2DM patients and were positively correlated with both NAG (, ) and the presence of hypertension (, ). Conclusions. These data suggest that the assessed molecules could represent useful markers to detect early renal impairment in patients with T2DM. Pierina De Muro, Antonio Junior Lepedda, Gabriele Nieddu, Michela Idini, Hai Quy Tram Nguyen, Omar Lobina, Pietro Fresu, and Marilena Formato Copyright © 2016 Pierina De Muro et al. All rights reserved. Modulation of Erythrocyte Plasma Membrane Redox System Activity by Curcumin Tue, 19 Jan 2016 18:24:38 +0000 Plasma membrane redox system (PMRS) is an electron transport chain system ubiquitously present throughout all cell types. It transfers electron from intracellular substrates to extracellular acceptors for regulation of redox status. Curcumin, isolated from Curcuma longa, has modulatory effects on cellular physiology due to its membrane interaction ability and antioxidant potential. The present study investigates the effect of curcumin on PMRS activity of erythrocytes isolated from Wistar rats in vitro and in vivo and validated through an in silico docking simulation study using Molegro Virtual Docker (MVD). Effects of curcumin were also evaluated on level of glutathione (GSH) and the oxidant potential of plasma measured in terms of plasma ferric equivalent oxidative potentials (PFEOP). Results show that curcumin significantly () downregulated the PMRS activity in a dose-dependent manner. Molecular docking results suggest that curcumin interacts with amino acids at the active site cavity of cytochrome reductase, a key constituent of PMRS. Curcumin also increased the GSH level in erythrocytes and plasma while simultaneously decreasing the oxidant potential (PFEOP) of plasma. Altered PMRS activity and redox status are associated with the pathophysiology of several health complications including aging and diabetes; hence, the above finding may explain part of the role of curcumin in health beneficial effects. Prabhakar Singh, Rajesh Kumar Kesharwani, Krishna Misra, and Syed Ibrahim Rizvi Copyright © 2016 Prabhakar Singh et al. All rights reserved. Protective Effects of Carvacrol against Oxidative Stress Induced by Chronic Stress in Rat’s Brain, Liver, and Kidney Tue, 19 Jan 2016 16:20:11 +0000 Restraint stress may be associated with elevated free radicals, and thus, chronic exposure to oxidative stress may cause tissue damage. Several studies have reported that carvacrol (CAR) has a protective effect against oxidative stress. The present study was designed to investigate the protective effects of CAR on restraint stress induced oxidative stress damage in the brain, liver, and kidney. For chronic restraint stress, rats were kept in the restrainers for 6 h every day, for 21 consecutive days. The animals received systemic administrations of CAR daily for 21 days. To evaluate the changes of the oxidative stress parameters following restraint stress, the levels of malondialdehyde (MDA), reduced glutathione (GSH), superoxide dismutase (SOD), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), glutathione reductase (GR), and catalase (CAT) activities were measured in the brain, liver, and kidney. In the stressed animals that received vehicle, the MDA level was significantly higher () and the levels of GSH and antioxidant enzymes were significantly lower than the nonstressed animals (). CAR ameliorated the changes in the stressed animals as compared with the control group (). This study indicates that CAR can prevent restraint stress induced oxidative damage. Saeed Samarghandian, Tahereh Farkhondeh, Fariborz Samini, and Abasalt Borji Copyright © 2016 Saeed Samarghandian et al. All rights reserved. Fabrication and Optimization of ChE/ChO/HRP-AuNPs/c-MWCNTs Based Silver Electrode for Determining Total Cholesterol in Serum Mon, 18 Jan 2016 10:27:35 +0000 The developed method used three enzymes comprised of cholesterol esterase, cholesterol oxidase, and peroxidase for fabrication of amperometric biosensor in order to determine total cholesterol in serum samples. Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) and carboxylated multiwall carbon nanotubes (cMWCNTs) were used to design core of working electrode, having covalently immobilized ChO, ChE, and HRP. Polyacrylamide layer was finally coated on working electrode in order to prevent enzyme leaching. Chemically synthesised Au nanoparticles were subjected to transmission electron microscopy (TEM) for analysing the shape and size of the particles. Working electrode was subjected to FTIR and XRD. The combined action of AuNP and c-MWCNT showed enhancement in electrocatalytic activity at a very low potential of 0.27 V. The pH 7, temperature 40°C, and response time of 20 seconds, respectively, were observed. The biosensor shows a broad linear range from 0.5 mg/dL to 250 mg/dL (0.01 mM–5.83 mM) with minimum detection limit being 0.5 mg/dL (0.01 mM). The biosensor showed reusability of more than 45 times and was stable for 60 days. The biosensor was successfully tested for determining total cholesterol in serum samples amperometrically with no significant interference by serum components. Kusum Lata, Vikas Dhull, and Vikas Hooda Copyright © 2016 Kusum Lata et al. All rights reserved. Halophilic Bacteria of Lunsu Produce an Array of Industrially Important Enzymes with Salt Tolerant Activity Mon, 18 Jan 2016 07:20:00 +0000 The halophilic bacterial isolates SS1, SS2, SS3, SS5, and SS8 were characterized for production of industrially important enzymes like amylase, protease, lipase, and glutaminase. Halophilic bacterial isolates SS1 and SS3 exhibited salt dependent extracellular amylase and protease activities. Both the halophilic isolates SS1 and SS3 exhibited maximum amylase and protease activities in the presence of 1.5 and 1.0 M NaCl, respectively, with the optimum pH 8 and temperature 40°C. SS2 showed maximum extracellular protease and lipase activities in the presence of 0.75 M NaCl, at optimum pH of 7, and temperature 37°C. The glutaminase activity of SS3 increased with increase in concentration of NaCl up to 2.5 M. The optimum pH and temperature for L-glutaminase activity of SS3 was 8 and 40°C, respectively. The combined hydrolytic activities of these halophilic bacterial isolates can be used for bioconversion of organic materials to useful products. Sonika Gupta, Parul Sharma, Kamal Dev, and Anuradha Sourirajan Copyright © 2016 Sonika Gupta et al. All rights reserved. Unravelling the Interactions between Hydrolytic and Oxidative Enzymes in Degradation of Lignocellulosic Biomass by Sporothrix carnis under Various Fermentation Conditions Mon, 11 Jan 2016 07:36:17 +0000 The mechanism underlying the action of lignocellulolytic enzymes in biodegradation of lignocellulosic biomass remains unclear; hence, it is crucial to investigate enzymatic interactions involved in the process. In this study, degradation of corn cob by Sporothrix carnis and involvement of lignocellulolytic enzymes in biodegradation were investigated over 240 h cultivation period. About 60% degradation of corn cob was achieved by S. carnis at the end of fermentation. The yields of hydrolytic enzymes, cellulase and xylanase, were higher than oxidative enzymes, laccase and peroxidase, over 144 h fermentation period. Maximum yields of cellulase (854.4 U/mg) and xylanase (789.6 U/mg) were at 96 and 144 h, respectively. Laccase and peroxidase were produced cooperatively with maximum yields of 489.06 U/mg and 585.39 U/mg at 144 h. Drastic decline in production of cellulase at 144 h (242.01 U/mg) and xylanase at 192 h (192.2 U/mg) indicates that they play initial roles in biodegradation of lignocellulosic biomass while laccase and peroxidase play later roles. Optimal degradation of corn cob (76.6%) and production of hydrolytic and oxidative enzymes were achieved with 2.5% inoculum at pH 6.0. Results suggest synergy in interactions between the hydrolytic and oxidative enzymes which can be optimized for improved biodegradation. Olusola A. Ogunyewo and Folasade M. Olajuyigbe Copyright © 2016 Olusola A. Ogunyewo and Folasade M. Olajuyigbe. All rights reserved. Can Melatonin Act as an Antioxidant in Hydrogen Peroxide-Induced Oxidative Stress Model in Human Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells? Mon, 11 Jan 2016 06:05:26 +0000 Purpose. We aimed to investigate the possible effects of melatonin on gene expressions and activities of MnSOD and catalase under conditions of oxidative stress induced by hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs). Materials and Methods. PBMCs were isolated from healthy subjects and treated as follows: (1) control (only with 0.1% DMSO for 12 h); (2) melatonin (1 mM) for 12 h; (3) H2O2 (250 μM) for 2 h; (4) H2O2 (250 μM) for 2 h following 10 h pretreatment with melatonin (1 mM). The gene expression was evaluated by real-time PCR. MnSOD and catalase activities in PBMCs were determined by colorimetric assays. Results. Pretreatment of PBMCs with melatonin significantly augmented expression and activity of MnSOD which were diminished by H2O2. Melatonin treatment of PBMCs caused a significant upregulation of catalase by almost 2-fold in comparison with untreated cells. However, activity and expression of catalase increased by 1.5-fold in PBMCs under H2O2-induced oxidative stress compared with untreated cell. Moreover, pretreatment of PBMCs with melatonin resulted in a significant 1.8-fold increase in catalase expression compared to PBMCs treated only with H2O2. Conclusion. It seems that melatonin could prevent from undesirable impacts of H2O2-induced oxidative stress on MnSOD downregulation. Moreover, melatonin could promote inductive effect of H2O2 on catalase mRNA expression. Solaleh Emamgholipour, Arash Hossein-Nezhad, and Mohammad Ansari Copyright © 2016 Solaleh Emamgholipour et al. All rights reserved. Silica Nanoparticles Effects on Blood Coagulation Proteins and Platelets Wed, 06 Jan 2016 06:39:56 +0000 Interaction of nanoparticles with the blood coagulation is important prior to their using as the drug carriers or therapeutic agents. The aim of present work was studying of the primary effects of silica nanoparticles (SiNPs) on haemostasis in vitro. We studied the effect of SiNPs on blood coagulation directly estimating the activation of prothrombin and factor X and to verify any possible effect of SiNPs on human platelets. It was shown that SiNPs shortened coagulation time in APTT and PT tests and increased the activation of factor X induced by RVV possibly due to the sorption of intrinsic pathway factors on their surface. SiNPs inhibited the aggregation of platelet rich plasma induced by ADP but in the same time partially activated platelets as it was shown using flow cytometry. The possibility of SiNPs usage in nanomedicine is strongly dependant on their final concentration in bloodstream and the size of the particles that are used. However SiNPs are extremely promising as the haemostatic agents for preventing the blood loss after damage. Volodymyr Gryshchuk and Natalya Galagan Copyright © 2016 Volodymyr Gryshchuk and Natalya Galagan. All rights reserved. Ex Vivo Antioxidant Activity of Selected Medicinal Plants against Fenton Reaction-Mediated Oxidation of Biological Lipid Substrates Thu, 31 Dec 2015 14:31:27 +0000 Free radical-mediated oxidation is often linked to various degenerative diseases. Biological substrates with lipids as major components are susceptible to oxygen-derived lipid peroxidation due to their composition. Lipid peroxide products act as biomarkers in evaluating the antioxidant potential of various plants and functional foods. The study focused on evaluation of the antioxidant potential of two extracts (methanol and 80% methanol) of four medicinal plants, Andrographis paniculata, Costus speciosus, Canthium parviflorum, and Abrus precatorius, against Fenton reaction-mediated oxidation of three biological lipid substrates; cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein, and brain homogenate. The antioxidant activity of the extracts was measured by thiobarbituric acid reactive substances method. Also, the correlation between the polyphenol, flavonoid content, and the antioxidant activity in biological substrates was analyzed. Results indicated highest antioxidant potential by 80% methanol extract of Canthium parviflorum (97.55%), methanol extract of Andrographis paniculata (72.15%), and methanol extract of Canthium parviflorum (49.55%) in cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein, and brain, respectively. The polyphenol and flavonoid contents of methanol extract of Andrographis paniculata in cholesterol () and low-density lipoprotein () and Costus speciosus in brain (, polyphenols, and , flavonoids) correlated well with the antioxidant activity. The findings prove the antioxidant potential of the selected medicinal plants against Fenton reaction in biological lipid substrates. Namratha Pai Kotebagilu, Vanitha Reddy Palvai, and Asna Urooj Copyright © 2015 Namratha Pai Kotebagilu et al. All rights reserved. Transcriptional Activation of p53 during Cold Induced Torpor in the 13-Lined Ground Squirrel Ictidomys tridecemlineatus Wed, 30 Dec 2015 13:22:59 +0000 The transcription factor p53 is located at the centre of multiple pathways relating the cellular response to stress. Commonly known as a tumor suppressor, it is responsible for initiating diverse actions to protect the integrity of the genome, ranging from cell cycle arrest to apoptosis. This study investigated the regulation of p53 protein in hibernating 13-lined ground squirrel Ictidomys tridecemlineatus during multiple stages of the torpor-arousal cycle. Transcript and protein levels of p53 were both elevated in the skeletal muscle during early and late torpor stages of the hibernation cycle. Nuclear localization of p53 was also increased during late torpor, and this is associated with an increase in its DNA binding activity and expression of p53 transcriptional targets p21CIP, gadd45α, and 14-3-3σ. The increase in p53 transcriptional activity appears to be independent of its phosphorylation at Ser-15, Ser-46, and Ser-392, consistent with an absence of checkpoint kinase activation during torpor. Sequence analysis revealed unique amino acid substitutions in the ground squirrel p53 protein, which may contribute to an increase in protein stability compared to nonhibernators. Overall, the study results provided evidences for a potential role of p53 in the protection of the skeletal muscle during torpor. Joshua Hefler, Cheng-Wei Wu, and Kenneth B. Storey Copyright © 2015 Joshua Hefler et al. All rights reserved. Comparative In Vitro Binding Studies of TiCl2(dpme)2, Ti(ada)2(bzac)2, and TiCl2(bzac)(bpme) Titanium Complexes with Calf-Thymus DNA Wed, 30 Dec 2015 09:57:06 +0000 The binding of TiCl2(dpme)2 (1), (dpme = 6,6′-dimethyl-2,2′-bipyridine), Ti(ada)2(bzac)2 (2), (ada = adamantylamine; bzac = benzoylacetone), and TiCl2(bzac)(bpme) (3), (bpme = 4,4′-dimethyl-2,2′-bipyrdine) with calf thymus (ct) DNA has been studied by UV-visible spectroscopy, thermal denaturation, and circular dichroism spectroscopy. In UV-visible study complexes 1, 2, and 3 showed red, blue, and red shifts, respectively, upon the addition of ct-DNA along with a significant hyperchromism. The intrinsic binding constants () calculated from UV-visible absorption studies were 2.3 × 103 M−1, 3.3 × 103 M−1 and, 7.1 × 103 M−1 for complexes 1, 2, and 3, respectively. The change in melting temperature (Δ) was calculated to be 2-3°C for each complex. Circular dichroism (CD) study showed blue shift for complex 2 and red shift for complexes 1 and 3 along with rise in molecular ellipticity upon the addition of complexes. Results suggest a binding mode of complex 2 different than 1 and 3. Pamita Awasthi, Nitesh Kumar, Raj Kaushal, Mohan Kumar, and Shrikant Kukreti Copyright © 2015 Pamita Awasthi et al. All rights reserved. Comparative Analysis of the Properties of Acid-Base Indicator of Rose (Rosa setigera), Allamanda (Allamanda cathartica), and Hibiscus (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis) Flowers Sun, 27 Dec 2015 08:13:59 +0000 The need to develop effective alternative for synthetic indicators is the demand of present-day chemistry. The acid-base indicator properties of Rose (Rosa setigera), Allamanda (Allamanda cathartica), and Hibiscus (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis) flowers were examined. Colour pigments were extracted from the flowers via cold and solvent extraction using soxhlet extractor. The pH value of the extracts with wavelengths of absorption was determined using ultraviolet spectrophotometer. From the results obtained, all the extracts exhibited sharp contrast between their colours in acid and base. Their pH was found to be 5.5 for cold extract of Rose and 5.6 for solvent extraction, 5.24 for cold extract of a Hibiscus and 6.52 for solvent extraction, 5.35 for cold extract of Allamanda, and 5.45 for solvent extraction. The maximum wavelengths of absorption obtained for all the extract fall within the visible region of electromagnetic spectrum. These values are almost similar to that obtained from synthetic indicators. It is on these bases that we concluded that natural indicators could be an excellent replacement for synthetic indicators since they are cheap, readily available, simple to extract, not toxic, user and environmentally friendly. Stanley I. R. Okoduwa, Lovina O. Mbora, Matthew E. Adu, and Ameh A. Adeyi Copyright © 2015 Stanley I. R. Okoduwa et al. All rights reserved. Distribution of Phenolic Contents, Antidiabetic Potentials, Antihypertensive Properties, and Antioxidative Effects of Soursop (Annona muricata L.) Fruit Parts In Vitro Tue, 15 Dec 2015 09:33:07 +0000 Soursop fruit has been used in folklore for the management of type-2 diabetes and hypertension with limited information on the scientific backing. This study investigated the effects of aqueous extracts (1 : 100 w/v) of Soursop fruit part (pericarp, pulp, and seed) on key enzymes linked to type-2 diabetes (α-amylase and α-glucosidase) and hypertension [angiotensin-I converting enzyme (ACE)]. Radicals scavenging and Fe2+ chelation abilities and reducing property as well as phenolic contents of the extracts were also determined. Our data revealed that the extracts inhibited α-amylase and α-glucosidase and ACE activities dose-dependently. The effective concentration of the extract causing 50% antioxidant activity (EC50) revealed that pericarp extract had the highest α-amylase (0.46 mg/mL), α-glucosidase (0.37 mg/mL), and ACE (0.03 mg/mL) inhibitory activities while the seed extract had the least [α-amylase (0.76 mg/mL); α-glucosidase (0.73 mg/mL); and ACE (0.20 mg/mL)]. Furthermore, the extracts scavenged radicals, reduced Fe3+ to Fe2+, and chelated Fe2+. The phenolic contents in the extracts ranged from 85.65 to 560.21 mg/100 g. The enzymes inhibitory and antioxidants potentials of the extracts could be attributed to their phenolic distributions which could be among the scientific basis for their use in the management of diabetes and hypertension. However, the pericarp appeared to be most promising. Stephen A. Adefegha, Sunday I. Oyeleye, and Ganiyu Oboh Copyright © 2015 Stephen A. Adefegha et al. All rights reserved. Development of Monoclonal Antibodies against CMP-N-Acetylneuraminate-beta-galactosamide-alpha-2,3-sialyltransferase 1 (ST3Gal-I) Recombinant Protein Expressed in E. coli Thu, 10 Dec 2015 09:50:08 +0000 Aberrant glycosylation is one of the major hallmarks of cancer with altered gene expression signatures of sialyltransferases. ST3Gal-I, a sialyltransferase, is known to play a crucial role in sialylation of T antigen in bladder cancer and it has reported elevated expression in breast carcinogenesis with increased tumor progression stages. The aim of the current study is to develop new monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against human ST3Gal-I and evaluate their diagnostic potential. We developed a repertoire of stable hybridoma cell lines producing high-affinity IgG antibodies against recombinant human ST3Gal-I, expressed in E. coli BL21-DE3 strain. In order to demonstrate the diagnostic value of the mAbs, various clones were employed for the immunohistochemistry analysis of ST3Gal-I expression in cancerous tissues. Antibodies generated by 7E51C83A10 clone demonstrated a strong and specific fluorescence staining in breast cancer tissue sections and did not exhibit significant background in fibroadenoma sections. In conclusion, the mAbs raised against recombinant ST3Gal-I recognize cellular ST3Gal-I and represent a promising diagnostic tool for the immunodetection of ST3Gal-I expressing cells. Specific-reactivity of clone 7E51C83A10 mAbs towards ST3Gal-I was also confirmed by immunoblotting. Therefore, our observations warrant evaluation of ST3Gal-I as a potential marker for cancer diagnosis at larger scale. Anuj Kumar Gupta, Parvinder Kaur, Harshada Patil, Pallavi Kadam, Paresh B. Bhanushali, and Manoj Chugh Copyright © 2015 Anuj Kumar Gupta et al. All rights reserved. Synthesis, Spectral Characterization, and Biochemical Evaluation of Antidiabetic Properties of a New Zinc-Diosmin Complex Studied in High Fat Diet Fed-Low Dose Streptozotocin Induced Experimental Type 2 Diabetes in Rats Wed, 09 Dec 2015 12:32:27 +0000 In view of the established antidiabetic properties of zinc, the present study was aimed at evaluating the hypoglycemic properties of a new zinc-diosmin complex in high fat diet fed-low dose streptozotocin induced experimental type 2 diabetes in rats. Zinc-diosmin complex was synthesized and characterized by various spectral studies. The complexation between zinc ions and diosmin was further evidenced by pH-potentiometric titrations and Job’s plot. Diabetic rats were orally treated with zinc-diosmin complex at a concentration of 20 mg/kg b.w./rat/day for 30 days. At the end of the experimental period, the rats were subjected to oral glucose tolerance test. In addition, HOMA-IR and various biochemical parameters related to glucose homeostasis were analyzed. Treatment with zinc-diosmin complex significantly improved the glucose homeostasis in diabetic rats. Treatment with zinc-diosmin complex significantly improved insulin sensitivity, at least in part, through enhancing protein metabolism and alteration in the levels of muscle and liver glycogen. The assay of clinical marker enzymes revealed the nontoxic nature of the complex. Determination of renal tissue markers such as blood urea and serum creatinine indicates the renoprotective nature of the complex. These findings suggest that zinc-diosmin complex is nontoxic and has complimentary potential to develop as an antihyperglycemic agent for the treatment of diabetes mellitus. Veerasamy Gopalakrishnan, Subramanian Iyyam Pillai, and Sorimuthu Pillai Subramanian Copyright © 2015 Veerasamy Gopalakrishnan et al. All rights reserved. Short-Term Feeding of Fibre-Enriched Biscuits: Protective Effect against Hepatotoxicity in Diabetic Rats Wed, 02 Dec 2015 14:31:04 +0000 The effects of fibre-enriched biscuit on biomarkers associated with hepatotoxicity in diabetic rats were investigated. Diabetes was induced by single intraperitoneal injection of alloxan monohydrate. Treatment lasted for 14 days after which the rats were sacrificed by cervical dislocation. Blood serum was analyzed to determine hepatic function enzymes. The liver was also analyzed to determine hepatic lipid profile and antioxidant enzymes. Induction of diabetes led to elevated levels of ALP, AST, and ALT. These were, however, significantly () reduced in the fibre-enriched biscuit fed (treated) group. There was no significant difference in the serum bilirubin and total protein levels of the studied groups. Reduced albumin level was observed in the diabetic group; this was further lowered on feeding with fibre-enriched biscuits. Induction of diabetes led to increased hepatic level of cholesterol, triglyceride (TG), low density lipoprotein (LDL), and lipid peroxidation and decreased activities of glutathione (GSH), catalase (CAT), and superoxide dismutase (SOD) and HDL level. These were significantly () reversed on feeding with fibre-enriched biscuit. This study portrays the protective effect of fibre-enriched biscuit on increased oxidative stress and hyperlipidemia in hepatic tissues of alloxan-induced diabetic rats. Ochuko L. Erukainure, Osaretin A. T. Ebuehi, Folasade O. Adeboyejo, Olufunmilola O. Oladunmoye, Muhammad Aliyu, Okukwe C. Obode, Tosin Olasehinde, and Gloria N. Elemo Copyright © 2015 Ochuko L. Erukainure et al. All rights reserved. Obstructive Sleep Apnea, Hypertension, and Their Additive Effects on Atherosclerosis Tue, 01 Dec 2015 14:24:10 +0000 Background and Aims. It is widely accepted that obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is independently associated with atherosclerosis. Similar to OSA, hypertension (HTN) is a condition associated with atherosclerosis. However, to date, the impact of the simultaneous presence of OSA and HTN on the risk of atherosclerosis has not been extensively studied. The aim of this study was to evaluate the consequences of the coexistence of OSA and HTN on carotid intima-media thickness (IMT) and on inflammatory markers of atherosclerosis (such as interleukin- [IL-] 6 and pentraxin- [PTX-] 3). Methods. The study design allowed us to define 4 groups: (1) controls (); (2) OSA patients without HTN (); (3) HTN patients without OSA (); (4) patients with OSA and HTN (). In the morning after portable monitoring (between 7 am and 8 am), blood samples were collected, and carotid IMT was measured. Results. Carotid IMT, IL-6, and PTX-3 in OSA normotensive patients and in non-OSA HTN subjects were significantly higher compared to control subjects; in addition, in OSA hypertensive patients they were significantly increased compared to OSA normotensive, non-OSA HTN, or control subjects. Conclusions. OSA and HTN have an additive role in the progression of carotid atherosclerosis and in blood levels of inflammatory markers for atherosclerosis, such as interleukin-6 and pentraxin-3. Mario Francesco Damiani, Annapaola Zito, Pierluigi Carratù, Vito Antonio Falcone, Elioda Bega, Pietro Scicchitano, Marco Matteo Ciccone, and Onofrio Resta Copyright © 2015 Mario Francesco Damiani et al. All rights reserved. Prediction of Protein-Protein Interaction Sites Based on Naive Bayes Classifier Mon, 30 Nov 2015 06:14:37 +0000 Protein functions through interactions with other proteins and biomolecules and these interactions occur on the so-called interface residues of the protein sequences. Identifying interface residues makes us better understand the biological mechanism of protein interaction. Meanwhile, information about the interface residues contributes to the understanding of metabolic, signal transduction networks and indicates directions in drug designing. In recent years, researchers have focused on developing new computational methods for predicting protein interface residues. Here we creatively used a 181-dimension protein sequence feature vector as input to the Naive Bayes Classifier- (NBC-) based method to predict interaction sites in protein-protein complexes interaction. The prediction of interaction sites in protein interactions is regarded as an amino acid residue binary classification problem by applying NBC with protein sequence features. Independent test results suggested that Naive Bayes Classifier-based method with the protein sequence features as input vectors performed well. Haijiang Geng, Tao Lu, Xiao Lin, Yu Liu, and Fangrong Yan Copyright © 2015 Haijiang Geng et al. All rights reserved. Total Phenolic Content and Antioxidant Activity of Different Types of Chocolate, Milk, Semisweet, Dark, and Soy, in Cerebral Cortex, Hippocampus, and Cerebellum of Wistar Rats Mon, 16 Nov 2015 13:58:55 +0000 Chocolate is a product consumed worldwide and it stands out for presenting an important amount of phenolic compounds. In this study, the total phenolic content and antioxidant activity in the cerebral cortex, hippocampus, and cerebellum of male Wistar rats when consuming different types of chocolate, including milk, semisweet, dark, and soy, was evaluated. The total polyphenols concentration and antioxidant activity in vitro by the method of DPPH radical-scavenging test were evaluated in chocolate samples. Lipid peroxidation (TBARS), protein oxidation (carbonyl), sulfhydryl groups, and activity of SOD enzyme in cerebral cortex, hippocampus, and cerebellum of rats treated or not with hydrogen peroxide and/or chocolate were also evaluated. The dark chocolate demonstrated higher phenolic content and antioxidant activity, followed by semisweet, soy, and milk chocolates. The addition of chocolate in the diet of the rats reduced lipid peroxidation and protein oxidation caused by hydrogen peroxide. In the sulfhydryl assay, we observed that the levels of nonenzymatic defenses only increased with the chocolate treatments The SOD enzyme activity was modulated in the tissues treated with the chocolates. We observed in the samples of chocolate a significant polyphenol content and an important antioxidant activity; however, additional studies with different chocolates and other tissues are necessary to further such findings. Niara da Silva Medeiros, Roberta Koslowsky Marder, Mariane Farias Wohlenberg, Cláudia Funchal, and Caroline Dani Copyright © 2015 Niara da Silva Medeiros et al. All rights reserved. Phytochemicals Mediated Remediation of Neurotoxicity Induced by Heavy Metals Thu, 05 Nov 2015 06:48:34 +0000 Almost all the environmental components including both the abiotic and biotic factors have been consistently threatened by excessive contamination of heavy metals continuously released from various sources. Different heavy metals have been reported to generate adverse effects in many ways. Heavy metals induced neurotoxicity and impairment in signalling cascade leading to cell death (apoptosis) has been indicated by several workers. On one hand, these metals are required by the cellular systems to regulate various biological functions of normal cells, while on the other their biomagnification in the cellular systems produces adverse effects. The mechanism by which the heavy metals induce neurotoxicity follows free radicals production pathway(s) specially the generation of reactive oxygen species and reactive nitrogen species. These free radicals produced in excess have been shown to create an imbalance between the oxidative and antioxidative systems leading to emergence of oxidative stress, which may cause necrosis, DNA damage, and many neurodegenerative disorders. This mini review summarizes the current knowledge available on the protective role of varied natural products isolated from different herbs/plants in imparting protection against heavy metals (cadmium, lead, arsenic, and mercury) mediated neurotoxicity. Vivek Kumar Gupta, Shweta Singh, Anju Agrawal, Nikhat Jamal Siddiqi, and Bechan Sharma Copyright © 2015 Vivek Kumar Gupta et al. All rights reserved. Antidiabetic Activity of Ruellia tuberosa L., Role of α-Amylase Inhibitor: In Silico, In Vitro, and In Vivo Approaches Wed, 21 Oct 2015 14:24:24 +0000 Ruellia tuberosa L. is a folk remedy in the treatment of diabetes mellitus. However, its hypoglycemic activity has not been investigated so far. In the present study, the antidiabetic mechanism of the n-hexane fraction of methanolic extract (HFME) of this plant was investigated in silico, in vitro, and in vivo. In silico study was performed using AutoDock4.2 software. In vitro  α-amylase inhibitory activity was investigated by starch-iodine method. A single dose of 450 mg/kg HFME for 14 days was subjected to an antidiabetic screening in vivo by a multiple low dose streptozotocin (MLD-STZ) induced rats. Molecular modeling results show that Betulin exhibited noncompetitive α-amylase inhibitory activities. The effect of HFME elicited significant reductions of diabetic rat blood glucose. A single dose administration of HFME inhibited α-amylase activity in vivo () compared to a diabetic control group. Moreover, this extract strongly inhibited the α-amylase activity in vitro (IC50 0.14 ± 0.005 mg/mL). It is concluded that HFME exerted an antidiabetic effect via α-amylase inhibitor. Our findings provide a possible hypoglycemic action of R. tuberosa L. as an alternative therapy in the management of diabetes. Dyah Ratna Wulan, Edi Priyo Utomo, and Chanif Mahdi Copyright © 2015 Dyah Ratna Wulan et al. All rights reserved. Influence of Moxifloxacin on Hepatic Redox Status and Plasma Biomarkers of Hepatotoxicity and Nephrotoxicity in Rat Tue, 13 Oct 2015 06:16:35 +0000 Moxifloxacin is a broad spectrum fluoroquinolone antibacterial agent. We examined the hepatic redox status and plasma biomarkers of nephrotoxicity and hepatotoxicity in rat following administration of moxifloxacin (MXF). Twenty-four Wistar rats, 180–200 g, were randomized into four groups (I–IV). Animals in group I (control) received 1 mL of distilled water, while animals in groups II, III, and IV received 1 mL each of MXF equivalent to 4 mg/kg b.w., 8 mg/kg b.w., and 16 mg/kg b.w., respectively. After seven days, plasma urea, bilirubin, and creatinine were significantly () elevated in the MXF-treated animals. Activities of alkaline phosphatase, aspartate aminotransferase, and alanine aminotransferase were significantly increased in the plasma of MXF-treated animals compared to control. Also plasma total cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, and triglycerides increased significantly in the MXF-treated groups relative to control. Moreover, MXF triggered a significant decrease in hepatic catalase, superoxide dismutase, and glutathione- transferase activities. Likewise, MXF caused a decrease in the hepatic levels of glutathione and vitamin C. A significant increase in hepatic MDA content was also observed in the MXF-treated animals relative to control. Overall, our data suggest that the half-therapeutic, therapeutic, and twice the therapeutic dose of MXF induced nephrotoxicity, hepatotoxicity, and altered hepatic redox balance in rats. Ayokanmi Ore and Ebenezer Tunde Olayinka Copyright © 2015 Ayokanmi Ore and Ebenezer Tunde Olayinka. All rights reserved. Modulatory Effects of Eschscholzia californica Alkaloids on Recombinant GABAA Receptors Mon, 05 Oct 2015 14:09:28 +0000 The California poppy (Eschscholzia californica Cham.) contains a variety of natural compounds including several alkaloids found exclusively in this plant. Because of the sedative, anxiolytic, and analgesic effects, this herb is currently sold in pharmacies in many countries. However, our understanding of these biological effects at the molecular level is still lacking. Alkaloids detected in E. californica could be hypothesized to act at GABAA receptors, which are widely expressed in the brain mainly at the inhibitory interneurons. Electrophysiological studies on a recombinant α1β2γ2 GABAA receptor showed no effect of N-methyllaurotetanine at concentrations lower than 30 μM. However, ()-reticuline behaved as positive allosteric modulator at the α3, α5, and α6 isoforms of GABAA receptors. The depressant properties of aerial parts of E. californica are assigned to chloride-current modulation by ()-reticuline at the α3β2γ2 and α5β2γ2 GABAA receptors. Interestingly, α1, α3, and α5 were not significantly affected by ()-reticuline, 1,2-tetrahydroreticuline, codeine, and morphine—suspected ()-reticuline metabolites in the rodent brain. Milan Fedurco, Jana Gregorová, Kristýna Šebrlová, Jana Kantorová, Ondřej Peš, Roland Baur, Erwin Sigel, and Eva Táborská Copyright © 2015 Milan Fedurco et al. All rights reserved. Phenolic Extract from Moringa oleifera Leaves Inhibits Key Enzymes Linked to Erectile Dysfunction and Oxidative Stress in Rats’ Penile Tissues Mon, 05 Oct 2015 08:49:57 +0000 This study was designed to determine the antioxidant properties and inhibitory effects of extract from Moringa oleifera leaves on angiotensin-I-converting enzyme (ACE) and arginase activities in vitro. The extract was prepared and phenolic (total phenols and flavonoid) contents, radical (nitric oxide (NO), hydroxyl (OH)) scavenging abilities, and Fe2+-chelating ability were assessed. Characterization of the phenolic constituents was done via high performance liquid chromatography-diode array detection (HPLC-DAD) analysis. Furthermore, the effects of the extract on Fe2+-induced MDA production in rats’ penile tissue homogenate as well as its action on ACE and arginase activities were also determined. The extract scavenged , , chelated Fe2+, and inhibited MDA production in a dose-dependent pattern with IC50 values of 1.36, 0.52, and 0.38 mg/mL and 194.23 µg/mL, respectively. Gallic acid, chlorogenic acid, quercetin, and kaempferol were the most abundant phenolic compounds identified in the leaf extract. The extract also inhibited ACE and arginase activities in a dose-dependent pattern and their IC50 values were 303.03 and 159.59 µg/mL, respectively. The phenolic contents, inhibition of ACE, arginase, and Fe2+-induced MDA production, and radical (, ) scavenging and Fe2+-chelating abilities could be some of the possible mechanisms by which M. oleifera leaves could be used in the treatment and/or management of erectile dysfunction. Ganiyu Oboh, Adedayo O. Ademiluyi, Ayokunle O. Ademosun, Tosin A. Olasehinde, Sunday I. Oyeleye, Aline A. Boligon, and Margareth L. Athayde Copyright © 2015 Ganiyu Oboh et al. All rights reserved.