112 research outputs found

    Sam Shepard

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    PLoS Biology—We're Open

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    With this first issue of PLoS Biology, the editors present the aims and scope of the journa

    Haploinsufficiency for p190B RhoGAP inhibits MMTV-Neu tumor progression

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    Introduction: Rho signaling regulates key cellular processes including proliferation, survival, and migration, and it has been implicated in the development of many types of cancer including breast cancer. P190B Rho GTPase activating protein (RhoGAP) functions as a major inhibitor of the Rho GTPases. P190B is required for mammary gland morphogenesis, and overexpression of p190B in the mammary gland induces hyperplastic lesions. Hence, we hypothesized that p190B may play a pivotal role in mammary tumorigenesis. Methods: To investigate the effects of loss of p190B function on mammary tumor progression, p190B heterozygous mice were crossed with an MMTV-Neu breast cancer model. Effects of p190B deficiency on tumor latency, multiplicity, growth, preneoplastic progression and metastasis were evaluated. To investigate potential differences in tumor angiogenesis between the two groups, immunohistochemistry to detect von Willebrand factor was performed and quantified. To examine gene expression of potential mediators of the angiogenic switch, an angiogenesis PCR array was utilized and results were confirmed using immunohistochemistry. Finally, reciprocal transplantation of tumor fragments was performed to determine the impact of stromal deficiency of p190B on tumor angiogenesis. Results: P190B deficiency reduced tumor penetrance (53% of p190B+/Neup190B^{+/-}Neu mice vs. 100% of p190B+/+Neup190B^{+/+}Neu mice formed tumors) and markedly delayed tumor onset by an average of 46 weeks. Tumor multiplicity was also decreased, but an increase in the number of preneoplastic lesions was detected indicating that p190B deficiency inhibited preneoplastic progression. Angiogenesis was decreased in the p190B heterozygous tumors, and expression of a potent angiogenic inhibitor, thrombospondin-1, was elevated in p190B+/Neup190B^{+/-}Neu mammary glands. Transplantation of p190B+/Neup190B^{+/-}Neu tumor fragments into wild-type recipients restored tumor angiogenesis. Strikingly, p190B+/+Neup190B^{+/+}Neu tumor fragments were unable to grow when transplanted into p190B+/Neup190B^{+/-}Neu recipients. Conclusions: These data suggest that p190B haploinsufficiency in the epithelium inhibits MMTV-Neu tumor initiation. Furthermore, p190B deficiency in the vasculature is responsible, in part, for the inhibition of MMTV-Neu tumor progression

    Decreased aortic growth and middle aortic syndrome in patients with neuroblastoma after radiation therapy

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    Background: Long-term CT follow-up studies are required in pediatric patients who have received intraoperative radiation therapy (IORT) and external beam radiation therapy (EBRT) to assess vascular toxicities and to determine the exact complication rate. Objective: To analyze with CT the effects of radiation therapy (RT) on the growth of the aorta in neuroblastoma patients.Materials and methods Abdominal CT scans of 31 patients with intraabdominal neuroblastoma (stage II–IV), treated with RT (20 IORT±EBRT, 11 EBRT alone), were analyzed retrospectively. The diameter of the abdominal aorta was measured before and after RT. These data were compared to normal and predicted normal aortic diameters of children, according to the model of Fitzgerald, Donaldson and Poznanski (aortic diameter in centimeters = 0.844 + 0.0599 × age in years), and to the diameters of a control group of children who had not undergone RT. Statistical analyses for the primary aims were performed using the chi-squared test, t-test, Mann-Whitney test, nonparametric Wilcoxon matched-pairs test and analysis of variance for repeated measures. Clinical files and imaging studies were evaluated for signs of late vascular complications of neuroblastoma patients who had received RT. Results: The mean diameter before and after RT and the growth of the aorta were significantly lower than expected in patients with neuroblastoma (P<0.05 for each) and when compared to the growth in a control group with normal and nonirradiated aortas. Among the patients who had received RT, there was no difference due to the type of RT. Seven patients from the IORT±EBRT group developed vascular complications, which included hypertension (five), middle aortic syndrome (two), death due to mesenteric ischemia (one) and critical aortic stenosis, which required aortic bypass surgery (two).Conclusion Patients with neuroblastoma who had received RT showed impaired growth of the abdominal aorta. Significant long-term vascular complications occurred in seven patients who received IORT±EBRT. Thus, CT evaluation of patients with neuroblastoma who receive RT should include not only reports of changes in tumor extension, but also documentation of perfusion, and the size and growth of the aorta and its branches over time

    Neuropeptidomic Components Generated by Proteomic Functions in Secretory Vesicles for Cell–Cell Communication

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    Diverse neuropeptides participate in cell–cell communication to coordinate neuronal and endocrine regulation of physiological processes in health and disease. Neuropeptides are short peptides ranging in length from ~3 to 40 amino acid residues that are involved in biological functions of pain, stress, obesity, hypertension, mental disorders, cancer, and numerous health conditions. The unique neuropeptide sequences define their specific biological actions. Significantly, this review article discusses how the neuropeptide field is at the crest of expanding knowledge gained from mass-spectrometry-based neuropeptidomic studies, combined with proteomic analyses for understanding the biosynthesis of neuropeptidomes. The ongoing expansion in neuropeptide diversity lies in the unbiased and global mass-spectrometry-based approaches for identification and quantitation of peptides. Current mass spectrometry technology allows definition of neuropeptide amino acid sequence structures, profiling of multiple neuropeptides in normal and disease conditions, and quantitative peptide measures in biomarker applications to monitor therapeutic drug efficacies. Complementary proteomic studies of neuropeptide secretory vesicles provide valuable insight into the protein processes utilized for neuropeptide production, storage, and secretion. Furthermore, ongoing research in developing new computational tools will facilitate advancements in mass-spectrometry-based identification of small peptides. Knowledge of the entire repertoire of neuropeptides that regulate physiological systems will provide novel insight into regulatory mechanisms in health, disease, and therapeutics

    Global patient outcomes after elective surgery: prospective cohort study in 27 low-, middle- and high-income countries.

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    BACKGROUND: As global initiatives increase patient access to surgical treatments, there remains a need to understand the adverse effects of surgery and define appropriate levels of perioperative care. METHODS: We designed a prospective international 7-day cohort study of outcomes following elective adult inpatient surgery in 27 countries. The primary outcome was in-hospital complications. Secondary outcomes were death following a complication (failure to rescue) and death in hospital. Process measures were admission to critical care immediately after surgery or to treat a complication and duration of hospital stay. A single definition of critical care was used for all countries. RESULTS: A total of 474 hospitals in 19 high-, 7 middle- and 1 low-income country were included in the primary analysis. Data included 44 814 patients with a median hospital stay of 4 (range 2-7) days. A total of 7508 patients (16.8%) developed one or more postoperative complication and 207 died (0.5%). The overall mortality among patients who developed complications was 2.8%. Mortality following complications ranged from 2.4% for pulmonary embolism to 43.9% for cardiac arrest. A total of 4360 (9.7%) patients were admitted to a critical care unit as routine immediately after surgery, of whom 2198 (50.4%) developed a complication, with 105 (2.4%) deaths. A total of 1233 patients (16.4%) were admitted to a critical care unit to treat complications, with 119 (9.7%) deaths. Despite lower baseline risk, outcomes were similar in low- and middle-income compared with high-income countries. CONCLUSIONS: Poor patient outcomes are common after inpatient surgery. Global initiatives to increase access to surgical treatments should also address the need for safe perioperative care. STUDY REGISTRATION: ISRCTN5181700

    Aggression, anxiety and vocalizations in animals: GABA A and 5-HT anxiolytics

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    A continuing challenge for preclinical research on anxiolytic drugs is to capture the affective dimension that characterizes anxiety and aggression, either in their adaptive forms or when they become of clinical concern. Experimental protocols for the preclinical study of anxiolytic drugs typically involve the suppression of conditioned or unconditioned social and exploratory behavior (e.g., punished drinking or social interactions) and demonstrate the reversal of this behavioral suppression by drugs acting on the benzodiazepine-GABA A complex. Less frequently, aversive events engender increases in conditioned or unconditioned behavior that are reversed by anxiolytic drugs (e.g., fear-potentiated startle). More recently, putative anxiolytics which target 5-HT receptor subtypes produced effects in these traditional protocols that often are not systematic and robust. We propose ethological studies of vocal expressions in rodents and primates during social confrontations, separation from social companions, or exposure to aversive environmental events as promising sources of information on the affective features of behavior. This approach focusses on vocal and other display behavior with clear functional validity and homology. Drugs with anxiolytic effects that act on the benzodiazepine-GABA A receptor complex and on 5-HT 1A receptors systematically and potently alter specific vocalizations in rodents and primates in a pharmacologically reversible manner; the specificity of these effects on vocalizations is evident due to the effectiveness of low doses that do not compromise other physiological and behavioral processes. Antagonists at the benzodiazepine receptor reverse the effects of full agonists on vocalizations, particularly when these occur in threatening, startling and distressing contexts. With the development of antagonists at 5-HT receptor subtypes, it can be anticipated that similar receptor-specificity can be established for the effects of 5-HT anxiolytics.Peer Reviewedhttp://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/46351/1/213_2005_Article_BF02245590.pd