88 research outputs found

    Harnessing Epigenetics for Breast Cancer Therapy: The Role of DNA Methylation, Histone Modifications, and MicroRNA

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    Breast cancer exhibits various epigenetic abnormalities that regulate gene expression and contribute to tumor characteristics. Epigenetic alterations play a significant role in cancer development and progression, and epigenetic-targeting drugs such as DNA methyltransferase inhibitors, histone-modifying enzymes, and mRNA regulators (such as miRNA mimics and antagomiRs) can reverse these alterations. Therefore, these epigenetic-targeting drugs are promising candidates for cancer treatment. However, there is currently no effective epi-drug monotherapy for breast cancer. Combining epigenetic drugs with conventional therapies has yielded positive outcomes and may be a promising strategy for breast cancer therapy. DNA methyltransferase inhibitors, such as azacitidine, and histone deacetylase inhibitors, such as vorinostat, have been used in combination with chemotherapy to treat breast cancer. miRNA regulators, such as miRNA mimics and antagomiRs, can alter the expression of specific genes involved in cancer development. miRNA mimics, such as miR-34, have been used to inhibit tumor growth, while antagomiRs, such as anti-miR-10b, have been used to inhibit metastasis. The development of epi-drugs that target specific epigenetic changes may lead to more effective monotherapy options in the future

    MicroRNA-Mediated Regulation of Histone-Modifying Enzymes in Cancer: Mechanisms and Therapeutic Implications

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    In the past decade, significant advances in molecular research have provided a deeper understanding of the intricate regulatory mechanisms involved in carcinogenesis. MicroRNAs, short non-coding RNA sequences, exert substantial influence on gene expression by repressing translation or inducing mRNA degradation. In the context of cancer, miRNA dysregulation is prevalent and closely associated with various stages of carcinogenesis, including initiation, progression, and metastasis. One crucial aspect of the cancer phenotype is the activity of histone-modifying enzymes that govern chromatin accessibility for transcription factors, thus impacting gene expression. Recent studies have revealed that miRNAs play a significant role in modulating these histone-modifying enzymes, leading to significant implications for genes related to proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis in cancer cells. This article provides an overview of current research on the mechanisms by which miRNAs regulate the activity of histone-modifying enzymes in the context of cancer. Both direct and indirect mechanisms through which miRNAs influence enzyme expression are discussed. Additionally, potential therapeutic implications arising from miRNA manipulation to selectively impact histone-modifying enzyme activity are presented. The insights from this analysis hold significant therapeutic promise, suggesting the utility of miRNAs as tools for the precise regulation of chromatin-related processes and gene expression. A contemporary focus on molecular regulatory mechanisms opens therapeutic pathways that can effectively influence the control of tumor cell growth and dissemination

    Characteristic of the Ascorbate Oxidase Gene Family in Beta vulgaris and Analysis of the Role of AAO in Response to Salinity and Drought in Beet

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    Ascorbate oxidase, which is known to play a key role in regulating the redox state in the apoplast, cell wall metabolism, cell expansion and abiotic stress response in plants, oxidizes apo-plastic ascorbic acid (AA) to dehydroascorbic acid (DHA). However, there is little information about the AAO genes and their functions in beets under abiotic stress. The term salt or drought stress refers to the treatment of plants with slow and gradual salinity/drought. Contrastingly, salt shock consists of exposing plants to high salt levels instantaneously and drought shock occurs under fast drought progression. In the present work, we have subjected plants to salinity or drought treatments to elicit either stress or shock and carried out a genome-wide analysis of ascorbate oxidase (AAO) genes in sugar beet (B. vulgaris cv. Huzar) and its halophytic ancestor (B. maritima). Here, conserved domain analyses showed the existence of twelve BvAAO gene family members in the genome of sugar beet. The BvAAO_1–12 genes are located on chromosomes 4, 5, 6, 8 and 9. The phylogenetic tree exhibited the close relationships between BvAAO_1-12 and AAO genes of Spinacia oleracea and Chenopodium quinoa. In both beet genotypes, downregulation of AAO gene expression with the duration of salt stress or drought treatment was observed. This correlated with a decrease in AAO enzyme activity under defined experimental setup. Under salinity, the key downregulated gene was BvAAO_10 in Beta maritima and under drought the BvAAO_3 gene in both beets. This phenomenon may be involved in determining the high tolerance of beet to salinity and drought

    Anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG against the S Protein: A Comparison of BNT162b2, mRNA-1273, ChAdOx1 nCoV-2019 and Ad26.COV2.S Vaccines

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    Background: COVID-19 vaccines induce a differentiated humoral and cellular response, and one of the comparable parameters of the vaccine response is the determination of IgG antibodies. Materials and Methods: Concentrations of IgG anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies were analyzed at three time points (at the beginning of May, at the end of June and at the end of September). Serum samples were obtained from 954 employees of the Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń (a total of three samples each were obtained from 511 vaccinated participants). IgG antibody concentrations were determined by enzyme immunoassay. The statistical analysis included comparisons between vaccines, between convalescents and COVID-19 non-patients, between individual measurements and included the gender, age and blood groups of participants. Results: There were significant differences in antibody levels between mRNA and vector vaccines. People vaccinated with mRNA-1273 achieved the highest levels of antibodies, regardless of the time since full vaccination. People vaccinated with ChAdOx1 nCoV-2019 produced several times lower antibody levels compared to the mRNA vaccines, while the antibody levels were more stable. In the case of each of the vaccines, the factor having the strongest impact on the level and stability of the IgG antibody titers was previous SARS-CoV-2 infection. There were no significant correlations with age, gender and blood type. Summary: mRNA vaccines induce a stronger humoral response of the immune system with the fastest loss of antibodies over time

    MicroRNA as a Potential Therapeutic Molecule in Cancer

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    Small noncoding RNAs, as post-translational regulators of many target genes, are not only markers of neoplastic disease initiation and progression, but also markers of response to anticancer therapy. Hundreds of miRNAs have been identified as biomarkers of drug resistance, and many have demonstrated the potential to sensitize cancer cells to therapy. Their properties of modulating the response of cells to therapy have made them a promising target for overcoming drug resistance. Several methods have been developed for the delivery of miRNAs to cancer cells, including introducing synthetic miRNA mimics, DNA plasmids containing miRNAs, and small molecules that epigenetically alter endogenous miRNA expression. The results of studies in animal models and preclinical studies for solid cancers and hematological malignancies have confirmed the effectiveness of treatment protocols using microRNA. Nevertheless, the use of miRNAs in anticancer therapy is not without limitations, including the development of a stable nanoconstruct, delivery method choices, and biodistribution. The aim of this review was to summarize the role of miRNAs in cancer treatment and to present new therapeutic concepts for these molecules. Supporting anticancer therapy with microRNA molecules has been verified in numerous clinical trials, which shows great potential in the treatment of cancer

    The Dynamics of Changes in the Concentration of IgG against the S1 Subunit in Polish Healthcare Workers in the Period from 1 to 12 Months after Injection, Including Four COVID-19 Vaccines

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    Background: The presented research made it possible to obtain the characteristics of changes in anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG within one year of vaccination in healthcare workers. Materials and Methods: The research group consisted of 18,610 participants represented by medical and administration staff. IgG antibody concentrations were determined by ELISA. Results: At 5–8 months after full vaccination, the levels of anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG with equal vaccines were similar. The exception was JNJ-78436735, for which IgG levels were significantly lower. In the 9th month after vaccination, an increase in the anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG level, suggesting asymptomatic infection, was observed in a large group of participants. Significantly higher levels of anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies were observed after the booster dose compared to the second dose. The increase in antibodies was observed already around the 5th day after the injection of the booster dose, and was maximized at approximately the 14th day. Conclusion: The cut-off date for protection against the disease seems to be the period 8–9 months from the vaccination for mRNA vaccines and 5–6 months for vector vaccines. The introduction of a booster dose was the right decision, which could have a real impact on restricting the further transmission of the virus

    Salt stress and salt shock differently affect DNA methylation in salt-responsive genes in sugar beet and its wild, halophytic ancestor.

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    Here we determined the impact of salt shock and salt stress on the level of DNA methylation in selected CpG islands localized in promoters or first exons of sixteen salt-responsive genes in beets. Two subspecies differing in salt tolerance were subjected for analysis, a moderately salt-tolerant sugar beet Beta vulgaris ssp. vulgaris cv. Huzar and a halophytic beet, Beta vulgaris ssp. maritima. The CpG island methylation status was determined. All target sequences were hyper- or hypomethylated under salt shock and/or salt stress in one or both beet subspecies. It was revealed that the genomic regions analyzed were highly methylated in both, the salt treated plants and untreated controls. Methylation of the target sequences changed in a salt-dependent manner, being affected by either one or both treatments. Under both shock and stress, the hypomethylation was a predominant response in sugar beet. In Beta vulgaris ssp. maritima, the hypermethylation occurred with higher frequency than hypomethylation, especially under salt stress and in the promoter-located CpG sites. Conversely, the hypomethylation of the promoter-located CpG sites predominated in sugar beet plants subjected to salt stress. This findings suggest that DNA methylation may be involved in salt-tolerance and transcriptomic response to salinity in beets

    The Association Between Affective Temperament Traits and Dopamine Genes in Obese Population

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    Studies indicate the heritable nature of affective temperament, which shows personality traits predisposing to the development of mental disorders. Dopaminergic gene polymorphisms such as DRD4, COMTVal158Met, and DAT1 have been linked to affective disorders in obesity. Due to possible correlation between the aforementioned polymorphisms and the affective temperament, the aim of our research was to investigate this connection in an obese population. The study enrolled 245 obese patients (178 females; 67 males). The affective temperament was assessed using the Temperament Evaluation of Memphis, Pisa, Paris, and San Diego autoquestionnaire (TEMPS-A). Genetic polymorphisms of DAT1, COMTVal158Met and DRD4 were collected from peripheral blood sample and determined using a polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Only in COMT polymorphisms, the cyclothymic and irritable dimensions were significantly associated with Met/Val carriers (p = 0.04; p = 0.01). Another interesting finding was the correlation between the affective temperament and age in men and women. We assume that dopamine transmission in heterozygotes of COMT may determine the role of the affective temperament in obese persons. Dopaminergic transmission modulated by COMT may be responsible for a greater temperament expression in obese individuals. To our knowledge, this is the first study describing the role of affective temperament in the obese population, but more research is needed in this regard

    Salt stress vs. salt shock - the case of sugar beet and its halophytic ancestor

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    Abstract Background Sugar beet is a highly salt-tolerant crop. However, its ability to withstand high salinity is reduced compared to sea beet, a wild ancestor of all beet crops. The aim of this study was to investigate transcriptional patterns associated with physiological, cytological and biochemical mechanisms involved in salt response in these closely related subspecies. Salt acclimation strategies were assessed in plants subjected to either gradually increasing salt levels (salt-stress) or in excised leaves, exposed instantly to salinity (salt-shock). Result The majority of DEGs was down-regulated under stress, which may lead to certain aspects of metabolism being reduced in this treatment, as exemplified by lowered transpiration and photosynthesis. This effect was more pronounced in sugar beet. Additionally, sugar beet, but not sea beet, growth was restricted. Silencing of genes encoding numerous transcription factors and signaling proteins was observed, concomitantly with the up-regulation of lipid transfer protein-encoding genes and those coding for NRTs. Bark storage protein genes were up-regulated in sugar beet to the level observed in unstressed sea beet. Osmotic adjustment, manifested by increased water and proline content, occurred in salt-shocked leaves of both genotypes, due to the concerted activation of genes encoding aquaporins, ion channels and osmoprotectants synthesizing enzymes. bHLH137 was the only TF-encoding gene induced by salt in a dose-dependent manner irrespective of the mode of salt treatment. Moreover, the incidence of bHLH-binding motives in promoter regions of salinity-regulated genes was significantly greater than in non-regulated ones. Conclusions Maintaining homeostasis under salt stress requires deeper transcriptomic changes in the sugar beet than in the sea beet. In both genotypes salt shock elicits greater transcriptomic changes than stress and it results in greater number of up-regulated genes compared to the latter. NRTs and bark storage protein may play a yet undefined role in salt stress-acclimation in beet. bHLH is a putative regulator of salt response in beet leaves and a promising candidate for further studies

    The role of microRNAs in animal physiology and pathology

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    MicroRNAs are a class of small, evolutionarily conserved, endogenous RNAs, capable of controlling gene expression. MicroRNAs are transcribed by RNA polymerases II and III, generating precursors that undergo a series of cleavage events to form mature microRNA. They play an important regulatory role in animals at the posttranscriptional levels by targeting mRNAs for direct cleavage of mRNAs or repression of mRNA translation. The main biological function of miRNA is the post-translation regulation of cells, like: proliferation and differentiation, cell death, fat metabolism, neuronal patterning and angiogenesis.  These molecules are the main regulators of biological features of economic interest, including body growth, muscle development, signaling transduction, fat deposition, and immunology. In this review, we summarize the existing knowledge about miRNAs synthesis, mechanisms for regulation of the genome their functions in animals physiology and the implications associated with dysfunction and dysregulation
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