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Wei Xiong - Top 30 Publications

Differential Effects of EGFL6 on Tumor versus Wound Angiogenesis.

Angiogenesis inhibitors are important for cancer therapy, but clinically approved anti-angiogenic agents have shown only modest efficacy and can compromise wound healing. This necessitates the development of novel anti-angiogenesis therapies. Here, we show significantly increased EGFL6 expression in tumor versus wound or normal endothelial cells. Using a series of in vitro and in vivo studies with orthotopic and genetically engineered mouse models, we demonstrate the mechanisms by which EGFL6 stimulates tumor angiogenesis. In contrast to its antagonistic effects on tumor angiogenesis, EGFL6 blockage did not affect normal wound healing. These findings have significant implications for development of anti-angiogenesis therapies.

The dioxygenase GIM2 functions in seed germination by altering gibberellin production in Arabidopsis.

The phytohormones gibberellic acid (GA) and abscisic acid (ABA) antagonistically control seed germination. High levels of GA favor seed germination, whereas high levels of ABA hinder this process. The direct relationship between GA biosynthesis and seed germination ability need further investigation. Here, we identified the ABA-insensitive gain-of-function mutant germination insensitive to ABA mutant 2 (gim2) by screening a population of XVE T-DNA-tagged mutant lines. Based on two loss-of-function gim2-ko mutant lines, the disruption of GIM2 function caused a delay in seed germination. By contrast, upregulation of GIM2 accelerated seed germination, as observed in transgenic lines overexpressing GIM2 (OE). We detected a reduction in endogenous bioactive GA levels and an increase in endogenous ABA levels in the gim2-ko mutants compared to wild type. Conversely, the OE lines had increased endogenous bioactive GA levels and decreased endogenous ABA levels. The expression levels of a set of GA- and/or ABA-related genes were altered in both the gim2-ko mutants and the OE lines. We confirmed that GIM2 has dioxygenase activity using an in vitro enzyme assay, finding that GIM2 can oxidize GA12 . Hence, our characterization of GIM2 demonstrates that it plays a role in seed germination by affecting the GA metabolic pathway in Arabidopsis.

CaV2.2 Gates Calcium-Independent but Voltage-Dependent Secretion in Mammalian Sensory Neurons.

Action potential induces membrane depolarization and triggers intracellular free Ca2+ concentration (Ca2+)-dependent secretion (CDS) via Ca2+ influx through voltage-gated Ca2+ channels. We report a new type of somatic exocytosis triggered by the action potential per se-Ca2+-independent but voltage-dependent secretion (CiVDS)-in dorsal root ganglion neurons. Here we uncovered the molecular mechanism of CiVDS, comprising a voltage sensor, fusion machinery, and their linker. Specifically, the voltage-gated N-type Ca2+ channel (CaV2.2) is the voltage sensor triggering CiVDS, the SNARE complex functions as the vesicle fusion machinery, the "synprint" of CaV2.2 serves as a linker between the voltage sensor and the fusion machinery, and ATP is a cargo of CiVDS vesicles. Thus, CiVDS releases ATP from the soma while CDS releases glutamate from presynaptic terminals, establishing the CaV2.2-SNARE "voltage-gating fusion pore" as a novel pathway co-existing with the canonical "Ca2+-gating fusion pore" pathway for neurotransmitter release following action potentials in primary sensory neurons.

Simultaneous determination of tryptophan, kynurenine, kynurenic acid, xanthurenic acid and 5-hydroxytryptamine in human plasma by LC-MS/MS and its application to acute myocardial infarction monitoring.

The reliable methods for the determination of tryptophan and its metabolites are vital to the monitoring of biochemical state during the initiation and progression of cardiovascular disease. In the present study, a single-run liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) method was developed for the simultaneous determination of tryptophan (Trp) and its metabolites including kynurenine (Kyn), kynurenic acid (KA), xanthurenic acid (XA) and 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) in human plasma. The plasma samples were prepared using a protein precipitation approach, and the chromatographic separation was performed by gradient elution on a C18 column within a total analysis time of 3.5 min. The calibration ranges were 40-20000 ng/mL for Trp, 4-2000 ng/mL for Kyn, 0.2-100 ng/mL for KA, 0.4-200 ng/mL for XA and 1-500 ng/mL for 5-HT, and the precision and accuracy were acceptable. The evaluation of recovery and IS-normalized matrix effect proved that the sample preparation approach was effective and the matrix effect could be negligible. The newly developed method was successfully applied to the analysis of plasma samples from healthy individuals and myocardial infarction patients. The findings suggested that the plasma concentrations of Trp, Kyn, 5-HT as well as the concentration ratios of Kyn/Trp and Trp/5-HT might serve as biomarkers for the monitoring of acute myocardial infarction.

Ultrafast direct electron transfer at organic semiconductor and metal interfaces.

The ability to control direct electron transfer can facilitate the development of new molecular electronics, light-harvesting materials, and photocatalysis. However, control of direct electron transfer has been rarely reported, and the molecular conformation-electron dynamics relationships remain unclear. We describe direct electron transfer at buried interfaces between an organic polymer semiconductor film and a gold substrate by observing the first dynamical electric field-induced vibrational sum frequency generation (VSFG). In transient electric field-induced VSFG measurements on this system, we observe dynamical responses (<150 fs) that depend on photon energy and polarization, demonstrating that electrons are directly transferred from the Fermi level of gold to the lowest unoccupied molecular orbital of organic semiconductor. Transient spectra further reveal that, although the interfaces are prepared without deliberate alignment control, a subensemble of surface molecules can adopt conformations for direct electron transfer. Density functional theory calculations support the experimental results and ascribe the observed electron transfer to a flat-lying polymer configuration in which electronic orbitals are found to be delocalized across the interface. The present observation of direct electron transfer at complex interfaces and the insights gained into the relationship between molecular conformations and electron dynamics will have implications for implementing novel direct electron transfer in energy materials.

Optimal allocation of physical water resources integrated with virtual water trade in water scarce regions: A case study for Beijing, China.

This study provides an innovative application of virtual water trade in the traditional allocation of physical water resources in water scarce regions. A multi-objective optimization model was developed to optimize the allocation of physical water and virtual water resources to different water users in Beijing, China, considering the trade-offs between economic benefit and environmental impacts of water consumption. Surface water, groundwater, transferred water and reclaimed water constituted the physical resource of water supply side, while virtual water flow associated with the trade of five major crops (barley, corn, rice, soy and wheat) and three livestock products (beef, pork and poultry) in agricultural sector (calculated by the trade quantities of products and their virtual water contents). Urban (daily activities and public facilities), industry, environment and agriculture (products growing) were considered in water demand side. As for the traditional allocation of physical water resources, the results showed that agriculture and urban were the two predominant water users (accounting 54% and 28%, respectively), while groundwater and surface water satisfied around 70% water demands of different users (accounting 36% and 34%, respectively). When considered the virtual water trade of eight agricultural products in water allocation procedure, the proportion of agricultural consumption decreased to 45% in total water demand, while the groundwater consumption decreased to 24% in total water supply. Virtual water trade overturned the traditional components of water supplied from different sources for agricultural consumption, and became the largest water source in Beijing. Additionally, it was also found that environmental demand took a similar percentage of water consumption in each water source. Reclaimed water was the main water source for industrial and environmental users. The results suggest that physical water resources would mainly satisfy the consumption of urban and environment, and the unbalance between water supply and demand could be filled by virtual water import in water scarce regions.

microRNA-33a-5p increases radiosensitivity by inhibiting glycolysis in melanoma.

Glycolysis was reported to have a positive correlation with radioresistance. Our previous study found that the miR-33a functioned as a tumor suppressor in malignant melanoma by targeting hypoxia-inducible factor1-alpha (HIF-1α), a gene known to promote glycolysis. However, the role of miR-33a-5p in radiosensitivity remains to be elucidated. We found that miR-33a-5p was downregulated in melanoma tissues and cells. Cell proliferation was downregulated after overexpression of miR-33a-5p in WM451 cells, accompanied by a decreased level of glycolysis. In contrast, cell proliferation was upregulated after inhibition of miR-33a-5p in WM35 cells, accompanied by increased glycolysis. Overexpression of miR-33a-5p enhanced the sensitivity of melanoma cells to X-radiation by MTT assay, while downregulation of miR-33a-5p had the opposite effects. Finally, in vivo experiments with xenografts in nude mice confirmed that high expression of miR-33a-5p in tumor cells increased radiosensitivity via inhibiting glycolysis. In conclusions, miR-33a-5p promotes radiosensitivity by negatively regulating glycolysis in melanoma.

Joint release rate estimation and measurement-by-measurement model correction for atmospheric radionuclide emission in nuclear accidents: An application to wind tunnel experiments.

The release rate of atmospheric radionuclide emissions is a critical factor in the emergency response to nuclear accidents. However, there are unavoidable biases in radionuclide transport models, leading to inaccurate estimates. In this study, a method that simultaneously corrects these biases and estimates the release rate is developed. Our approach provides a more complete measurement-by-measurement correction of the biases with a coefficient matrix that considers both deterministic and stochastic deviations. This matrix and the release rate are jointly solved by the alternating minimization algorithm. The proposed method is generic because it does not rely on specific features of transport models or scenarios. It is validated against wind tunnel experiments that simulate accidental releases in a heterogonous and densely built nuclear power plant site. The sensitivities to the position, number, and quality of measurements and extendibility of the method are also investigated. The results demonstrate that this method effectively corrects the model biases, and therefore outperforms Tikhonov's method in both release rate estimation and model prediction. The proposed approach is robust to uncertainties and extendible with various center estimators, thus providing a flexible framework for robust source inversion in real accidents, even if large uncertainties exist in multiple factors.

The first case of ischemia-free organ transplantation in humans: A proof of concept.

Ischemia and reperfusion injury (IRI) is an inevitable event in conventional organ transplant procedure and is associated with significant mortality and morbidity post-transplantation. We hypothesize that IRI is avoidable if the blood supply for the organ is not stopped, thus resulting in optimal transplant outcomes. Here we described the first case of a novel procedure called ischemia-free organ transplantation (IFOT) for patients with end-stage liver disease. The liver graft with severe macrovesicular steatosis was donated from a 25-year-old man. The recipient was a 51-year-old man with decompensated liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. The graft was procured, preserved, and implanted under continuous normothermic machine perfusion. The recipient did not suffer post-reperfusion syndrome or vasoplegia after revascularization of the allograft. The liver function test and histological study revealed minimal hepatocyte, biliary epithelium and vascular endothelium injury during preservation and post-transplantation. The inflammatory cytokine levels were much lower in IFOT than those in conventional procedure. Key pathways involved in IRI were not activated after allograft revascularization. No rejection, or vascular or biliary complications occurred. The patient was discharged on day 18 post-transplantation. This marks the first case of IFOT in humans, offering opportunities to optimize transplant outcomes and maximize donor organ utilization.

Trend analysis of cancer incidence and mortality in China.

BPIFB1 (LPLUNC1) inhibits migration and invasion of nasopharyngeal carcinoma by interacting with VTN and VIM.

Bactericidal/Permeability-increasing-fold-containing family B member 1 (BPIFB1, previously termed LPLUNC1) is highly expressed in the nasopharynx, significantly downregulated in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC), and associated with prognosis in NPC patients. Because metastasis represents the primary cause of NPC-related death, we explored the role of BPIFB1 in NPC migration and invasion.

Active evolution of memory B-cells specific to viral gH/gL/pUL128/130/131 pentameric complex in healthy subjects with silent human cytomegalovirus infection.

Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) can cause life-threatening infection in immunosuppressed patients, and in utero infection that may lead to birth defects. No vaccine is currently available. HCMV infection in healthy subjects is generally asymptomatic, and virus persists as latent infection for life. Host immunity is effective against reactivation and super-infection with another strain. Thus, vaccine candidates able to elicit immune responses similar to those of natural infection may confer protection. Since neutralization is essential for prophylactic vaccines, it is important to understand how antiviral antibodies are developed in natural infection. We hypothesized that the developmental path of antibodies in seropositive subjects could be unveiled by interrogating host B-cell repertoires using unique genetic signature sequences of mAbs. Towards this goal, we isolated 56 mAbs from three healthy donors with different neutralizing titers. Antibodies specific to the gH/gL/pUL128/130/131 pentameric complex were more potent in neutralization than those to gB. Using these mAbs as probes, patterns of extended lineage development for B-cells and evidence of active antibody maturation were revealed in two donors with higher neutralizing titers. Importantly, such patterns were limited to mAbs specific to the pentamer, but none to gB. Thus, memory B-cells with antiviral function such as neutralization were active during latent infection in the two donors, and this activity was responsible for their higher neutralizing titers. Our results indicated that memory B-cells of neutralizing capacity could be frequently mobilized in host, probably responding to silent viral episodes, further suggesting that neutralizing antibodies could play a role in control of recurrent infection.

Discrimination of Five Classes of Explosives by a Fluorescence Array Sensor Composed of Two Tricarbazole-Nanostructures.

In this work, we report a two-member fluorescence array sensor for the effective discrimination of five classes of explosives. This smallest array sensor is composed of tricarbazole-based nanofibers (sensor member 1) and nanoribbons (sensor member 2) deposited as two film bands in a quartz tube. On the basis of a simple comparison of the resulting fluorescence quenching ratios between two sensor members and the response reversibility upon exposure to vaporized explosives, five classes of explosives can be sensitively detected and easily discriminated. This array sensor that has only two sensor members and no complex data analysis represents a new design way for discrimination of a broad class of explosives.

Inhibition of REDD1 sensitizes bladder urothelial carcinoma to paclitaxel by inhibiting autophagy.

Regulated in development and DNA damage response-1 (REDD1) is a stress related protein and is involved in the progression of cancer. The role and regulatory mechanism of REDD1 in bladder urothelial carcinoma (BUC), however, is yet unidentified.

Oxiracetam or fastigial nucleus stimulation reduces cognitive injury at high altitude.

Cognitive impairment is common in people travelling to high altitude. Oxiracetam and electrical stimulation of cerebellar fastigial nucleus may have beneficial impacts. This study was to investigate the effects of preconditioning with Oxiracetam or fastigial nucleus stimulation (FNS) on cognitive decline following the ascension to high altitude.

Do Combined Pharmacist and Prescriber Efforts on Medication Reconciliation Reduce Postdischarge Patient Emergency Department Visits and Hospital Readmissions?

Although medication reconciliation (Med Rec) has demonstrated a reduction in potential adverse drug events, its effect on hospital readmissions remains inconclusive.

Circulating circular RNA hsa_circ_0001785 acts as a diagnostic biomarker for breast cancer detection.

Circular RNAs (circRNAs) are a class of non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) and characterized by covalently closed loop without 5' and 3' end. Recently, the diagnostic value of circRNAs has received more and more attention. However, the in-depth study about circRNAs diagnosis in breast cancer is still rarely reported. In present study, we try to investigate the circRNAs expression profiles in breast cancer peripheral blood and discover valuable diagnostic biomarkers.

Purification of Four Flavonoid Glycosides from Lotus (Nelumbo nucifera Gaertn) plumule by Macroporous Resin Combined with HSCCC.

High-speed counter-current chromatography (HSCCC) combined with macroporous resin (MR) column was successfully applied to the isolation and purification of four flavonoid glycosides from the medicinal herb Lotus plumule (LP). A polar two-phase solvent system composed of ethyl acetate-n-butanol-water (1:2:3, v/v/v) was selected by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and run on a preparative scale where the lower aqueous phase was used as the mobile phase with a head-to-tail elution mode. Quercetin-3-O-β-D-glucopyranoside (15 mg), isorhamnetin-3-O-β-D-glucopyranoside (13 mg), apigenin 6-C-β-D-glucopyranosyl-8-C-α-L-arabinopyranoside (18 mg) and apigenin 6,8-di-C-β-D-glucopyranoside (48 mg) were obtained in a one-step HSCCC separation from 240 mg of the sample. The purity of each compound was over 95% as determined by HPLC. Chemical structures of the isolated compounds were identified by electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS-MS) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) methods. Moreover, the four compounds were isolated from LP for the first time.

circGFRA1 and GFRA1 act as ceRNAs in triple negative breast cancer by regulating miR-34a.

Accumulating evidences indicate that circular RNAs (circRNAs), a class of non-coding RNAs, play important roles in tumorigenesis. However, the function of circRNAs in triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) is largely unknown.

Combined Liver-kidney Perfusion Enhances Protective Effects of Normothermic Perfusion on Livers Grafts from Donation after Cardiac Death.

It has been showed that combined liver-kidney normothermic machine perfusion (NMP) is able to better maintain the circuit's biochemical milieu. Nevertheless, whether the combined perfusion is superior to liver perfusion alone in protecting livers from donation after cardiac death (DCD) is unclear. We aimed to test the hypothesis and explored the mechanisms. Livers from 15 DCD pig donors were subjected to either static cold storage group (Group A), liver alone NMP group (Group B), or combined liver-kidney NMP group (Group C). Livers were preserved for six hours and re-perfused ex vivo for two hours to simulate transplantation, or transplanted in situ. During perfusion, Group C showed improved acid-base and biochemical environment in the circuit over Group B. After re-perfusion, the architecture of liver grafts was best preserved in group C, followed by Group B, then Group A, as shown by the histology and TUNEL staining of both hepatocytes and biliary epithelium. Ki-67 staining showed substantial hepatocyte proliferation and biliary epithelial regeneration after perfusion in Group B and Group C. Group C produced more bile in reperfusion phase than those in Group A and Group B, with more physiological bile composition and less severe biliary epithelium injury. vWF positive endothelial cells and E-selectin expression decreased in both Group B and Group C. Combined liver-kidney NMP not only produced more ATP, protected the NO signaling pathway, but also diminished oxidative stress (HMGB1 and 8-OHdG levels) and inflammatory cytokine (IL-6 and IL-8) release when compared to liver alone NMP and CS. In addition, the 7-day survival rate of liver transplant recipient was higher in Group C than those in Group A and B.

Deficiency of the melanin biosynthesis genes SCD1 and THR1 affects sclerotial development and vegetative growth, but not pathogenicity in Sclerotinia sclerotiorum.

The fungus Sclerotinia sclerotiorum is a necrotrophic plant pathogen causing significant damage on a broad range of crops. This fungus produces sclerotia that serve as the long-term survival structures in the life cycle and the primary inoculum in the disease cycle. Melanin plays an important role for protecting mycelia and sclerotia from ultraviolet radiation and other adverse environmental conditions. In this study two genes, SCD1 encoding a scytalone dehydratase and THR1 encoding a trihydroxynaphthalene reductase, were disrupted by target gene replacement and their roles in mycelial growth, sclerotial development and fungal pathogenicity were investigated. Phylogenetic analyses indicated that the deduced amino acid sequences of SCD1 and THR1 were similar to the orthologs of Botrytis cinerea. Expression of SCD1 was at higher levels in sclerotia compared to mycelia. THR1 was expressed at similar levels in mycelia and sclerotia at early stages, but was up-regulated in sclerotia at the maturation stage. Disruption of SCD1 or THR1 did not change the pathogenicity of the fungus, but resulted in slower radial growth, less biomass, wider-angled hyphae branches, impaired sclerotial development and decreased resistance to ultraviolet light. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

Aldehyde dehydrogenase 1A1 increases NADH levels and promotes tumor growth via glutathione/dihydrolipoic acid-dependent NAD+ reduction.

Aldehyde dehydrogenase 1A1 (ALDH1A1) is a member of the aldehyde dehydrogenase superfamily that oxidizes aldehydes to their corresponding acids, reactions that are coupled to the reduction of NAD+ to NADH. We report here that ALDH1A1 can also use glutathione (GSH) and dihydrolipoic acid (DHLA) as electron donors to reduce NAD+ to NADH. The GSH/DHLA-dependent NAD+-reduction activity of ALDH1A1 is not affected by the aldehyde dehydrogenase inhibitor or by mutation of the residues in its aldehyde-binding pocket. It is thus a distinct biochemical reaction from the classic aldehyde-dehydrogenase activity catalyzed by ALDH1A1. We also found that the ectopic expression of ALDH1A1 decreased the intracellular NAD+/NADH ratio, while knockout of ALDH1A1 increased the NAD+/NADH ratio. Simultaneous knockout of ALDH1A1 and its isozyme ALDH3A1 in lung cancer cell line NCI-H460 inhibited tumor growth in a xenograft model. Moreover, the ALDH1A1 mutants that retained their GSH/DHLA-dependent NAD+ reduction activity but lost their aldehyde-dehydrogenase activity were able to decrease the NAD+/NADH ratio and to rescue the impaired growth of ALDH1A1/3A1 double knockout tumor cells. Collectively, these results suggest that this newly characterized GSH/DHLA-dependent NAD+-reduction activity of ALDH1A1 can decrease cellular NAD+/NADH ratio and promote tumor growth.

The plasticity of cyanobacterial carbon metabolism.

This opinion article aims to raise awareness of a fundamental issue which governs sustainable production of biofuels and bio-chemicals from photosynthetic cyanobacteria. Discussed is the plasticity of carbon metabolism, by which the cyanobacterial cells flexibly distribute intracellular carbon fluxes towards target products and adapt to environmental/genetic alterations. This intrinsic feature in cyanobacterial metabolism is being understood through recent identification of new biochemical reactions and engineering on low-throughput pathways. We focus our discussion on new insights into the nature of metabolic plasticity in cyanobacteria and its impact on hydrocarbons (e.g. ethylene and isoprene) production. We discuss approaches that need to be developed to rationally rewire photosynthetic carbon fluxes throughout primary metabolism. We outline open questions about the regulatory mechanisms of the metabolic network that remain to be answered, which might shed light on photosynthetic carbon metabolism and help optimize design principles in order to improve the production of fuels and chemicals in cyanobacteria.

Prevention of Cyanobacterial Blooms Using Nanosilica: A Biomineralization-Inspired Strategy.

Cyanobacterial blooms represent a significant threat to global water resources because blooming cyanobacteria deplete oxygen and release cyanotoxins, which cause the mass death of aquatic organisms. In nature, a large biomass volume of cyanobacteria is a precondition for a bloom, and the cyanobacteria buoyancy is a key parameter for inducing the dense accumulation of cells on the water surface. Therefore, blooms will likely be curtailed if buoyancy is inhibited. Inspired by diatoms with naturally generated silica shells, we found that silica nanoparticles can be spontaneously incorporated onto cyanobacteria in the presence of poly(diallyldimethylammonium chloride), a cationic polyelectrolyte that can simulate biosilicification proteins. The resulting cyanobacteria-SiO2 complexes can remain sedimentary in water. This strategy significantly inhibited the photoautotrophic growth of the cyanobacteria and decreased their biomass accumulation, which could effectively suppress harmful bloom events. Consequently, several of the adverse consequences of cyanobacteria blooms in water bodies, including oxygen consumption and microcystin release, were significantly alleviated. Based on the above results, we propose that the silica nanoparticle treatment has the potential for use as an efficient strategy for preventing cyanobacteria blooms.

The reverse Warburg effect is likely to be an Achilles' heel of cancer that can be exploited for cancer therapy.

Although survival outcomes of cancer patients have been improved dramatically via conventional chemotherapy and targeted therapy over the last decades, there are still some tough clinical challenges that badly needs to be overcome, such as anticancer drug resistance, inevitable recurrences, cancer progression and metastasis. Simultaneously, accumulated evidence demonstrates that aberrant glucose metabolism termed 'the Warburg effect' in cancer cell is closely associated with malignant phenotypes. In 2009, a novel 'two-compartment metabolic coupling' model, also named 'the reverse Warburg effect', was proposed and attracted lots of attention. Based on this new model, we consider whether this new viewpoint can be exploited for improving the existent anti-cancer therapeutic strategies. Our review focuses on the paradigm shift from 'the Warburg effect' to 'the reverse Warburg effect', the features and molecular mechanisms of 'the reverse Warburg effect', and then we discuss its significance in fundamental researches and clinical practice.

Radiologically Undetected Hepatocellular Carcinoma in Patients Undergoing Liver Transplantation: An Immunohistochemical Correlation With LI-RADS Score.

Orthotopic liver transplantation is the best option for patients with carefully selected unresectable disease because of underlying liver dysfunction. The 5-year survival rate after orthotopic liver transplantation for early detected hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is high, and a similar or even higher rate is reported in those with radiologically undetected HCC. This study evaluated and compared the histologic features of pretransplant radiologically undetected (14 patients, 25 tumors) versus detected (36 patients, 45 tumors) HCCs. Tumor size, tumor differentiation, number of unpaired arteries, mitotic count per 10 high-power fields, CD34 immunostain to assess microvessel density, and Ki67 immunostain were compared with the Liver Imaging Reporting and Data System score, which was retrospectively assigned to each tumor in both groups. The Liver Imaging Reporting and Data System score was significantly higher in the HCC detected group (P<0.001). The vast majority of the undetected HCCs (88%) was <2 cm in size. Only 12% of the undetected HCCs were ≥2 cm, whereas 51% of the detected HCCs were ≥2 cm in size. Higher rate of moderate to poor tumor differentiation was noted in the detected HCCs compared with the undetected group (89% vs. 60%; P=0.004). No statistically significant difference in the number and distribution of unpaired arteries, or mitotic count was observed in 2 groups (although fewer unpaired arteries were identified in the undetected group). The detected HCCs had a higher rate of 2+ CD34 staining compared with the undetected HCCs (68% vs. 27%; P=0.002), whereas the opposite was observed for 1+ CD34 staining (59% undetected HCCs vs. 17% detected HCCs; P=0.002). Ki67 proliferative index was not statistically different between the 2 groups (120.8/1000 cells detected HCCs vs. 81.8/1000 cells undetected HCCs; P=0.36). The factors associated with failing to detect HCCs pretransplant by radiologic studies include small tumor size (<2 cm), low-grade histologic differentiation, and low microvessel density (low CD34 staining). A significant association between the number and distribution of unpaired arteries and HCC detection has not been established by our study.

Inclusion of Highest Glasgow Coma Scale Motor Component Score in Mortality Risk Adjustment for Benchmarking of Trauma Center Performance.

The Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) is the most widely used measure of traumatic brain injury (TBI) severity. Currently, the arrival GCS motor component (mGCS) score is used in risk-adjustment models for external benchmarking of mortality. However, there is evidence that the highest mGCS score in the first 24 hours after injury might be a better predictor of death. Our objective was to evaluate the impact of including the highest mGCS score on the performance of risk-adjustment models and subsequent external benchmarking results.

Preparation of umami octopeptide with recombined Escherichia coli: Feasibility and challenges.

The taste of umami peptide H-Lys-Gly-Asp-Glu-Glu-Ser-Leu-Ala-OH (LGAGGSLA) is controversial. One possible reason for this controversy is the use of chemically synthesized LGAGGSLA to confirm its taste. To explore other ways to further confirm the flavor of LGAGGSLA, we developed a new strategy to prepare a bio-source peptide by adopting a gene engineering method to express LGAGGSLA in recombinant Escherichia coli. In our previous work, we structured the LGAGGSLA recombinant expression system and optimized the culturing conditions for preparing a fusion protein. However, the fusion protein was not cleaved by enterokinase to obtain LGAGGSLA. Because the cleavage conditions of commercial enterokinase were not specific and recombinant engineered bacteria had the potential to be used in industrial processes, in this addendum, we calculated the mass and volume yields of key processing steps in the preparation of LGAGGSLA, and established a model of cleavage conditions with the cleavage ratio of LGAGGSLA. When the LGAGGSLA was confirmed to show umami taste, it is considered as a new umami or umami enhancer. The gene information of LGAGGSLA should have a great potential in the development of new flavor product and food product containing high umami flavor.

MicroRNA‑146a promotes the proliferation of rat vascular smooth muscle cells by downregulating p53 signaling.

The present study aimed to detect and verify gene expression profile differences for microRNA (miR)‑146a and its role in the proliferation of vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs). Artificially synthesized miR‑146a mimics, miR‑146 inhibitor, scramble‑miRNA or PBS was transfected into cultured primary rat VSMCs in vitro. Reverse transcription‑quantitative polymerase chain reaction confirmed that the miR‑146a expression level was significantly decreased in VSMCs treated with miR‑146a inhibitor (P<0.01). Cell Counting Kit‑8 was used to determine the proliferation ability, which demonstrated that proliferation was significantly decreased in VSMCs treated with miR‑146a inhibitor (P<0.01). Microarray expression profiling analysis revealed that the p53 signal pathway was upregulated in VSMCs treated with the miR‑146a inhibitor. Compared with untransfected VSMCs, the mRNA and protein expression levels of caspase‑3 and phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN) in p53 signal transduction pathway did not exhibit a significant difference (P>0.05); however, the mRNA and protein expression levels of p53 were significantly decreased in cells transfected with miR‑146a mimics and increased in miR‑146a inhibitor transfected cells (both P<0.01). The mRNA and protein expression levels of cyclin D1 significantly increased in miR‑146a mimics transfected cells and decreased in cells transfected with the miR‑146a inhibitor (both P<0.05). The present data indicated that miR‑146a may promote the proliferation of rat VSMCs by downregulating p53 and upregulating cyclin D1 expression.

Neuroscience step-down unit admission criteria for patients with intracerebral hemorrhage.

The goal of our study is to determine optimal criteria which can be used to avoid admission to neuroscience intensive care units for patients with intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH).