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Articles by J Zhao
Total Records ( 27 ) for J Zhao
  P Yao , L Hao , N Nussler , A Lehmann , F Song , J Zhao , P Neuhaus , L Liu and A. Nussler
 

It has been reported that naturally occurring quercetin exerts hepatoprotective effects through heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) induction. However, the precise mechanism of how ethanol-associated liver damage is counteracted by quercetin-enhanced HO-1 metabolism still remains unclear. To further decipher the protective role of quercetin on ethanol-induced liver damage, we treated human hepatocytes with quercetin and various (end) products of the HO-1 pathway. Our data clearly showed that quercetin treatment attenuated ethanol-induced damage, whereas hemoglobin and zinc protoporphyrin 9 (ZnPP) abolished such effects. Iron-II aggravated ethanol toxicity and was only partially reduced by quercetin. In contrast, carbon monoxide (CO) dose dependently inhibited ethanol-induced cytochrome P450 2E1 (CYP 2E1) activity and hepatotoxicity but had no influence on CYP 2E1 protein expression. Similarly, hemoglobin dramatically stimulated CYP 2E1 activity but not the protein expression in quercetin- and ethanol-cotreated hepatocytes. ZnPP significantly promoted CYP 2E1 protein expression in the presence and absence of CO treatment but inhibited ethanol-induced CYP 2E1 activation following CO incubation in quercetin- and ethanol-cotreated hepatocytes. These results suggested that quercetin virtually attenuated ethanol-derived oxidative damage via HO-1 induction. Heme degradation and CO release may mediate the protective effects through inhibiting ethanol-induced CYP 2E1 synthesis and enzymatic activity, respectively.

  V Vaccarino , J Votaw , T Faber , E Veledar , N. V Murrah , L. R Jones , J Zhao , S Su , J Goldberg , J. P Raggi , A. A Quyyumi , D. S Sheps and J. D. Bremner
 

Background  Major depressive disorder (MDD) is associated with coronary heart disease (CHD), but the mechanisms are unclear. The presence of MDD may increase CHD risk by affecting microvascular circulation. It is also plausible that genetic factors influencing MDD may overlap with those for CHD. We sought to examine the relationship between MDD and coronary flow reserve (CFR), the ratio of maximum flow during stress to flow at rest measured in milliliters per minute per gram of tissue.

Methods  We examined 289 male middle-aged twins, including 106 twins (53 twin pairs) discordant for a lifetime history of MDD and 183 control twins (unrelated to any twins in the experimental group) without MDD. To calculate CFR, we used positron emission tomography with nitrogen 13 (13N) ammonia to evaluate myocardial blood flow at rest and after adenosine stress. A standard perfusion defect score was also used to assess myocardial ischemia.

Results  There was no difference in myocardial ischemia between twins with and without MDD. Among the dizygotic twin pairs discordant for MDD, the CFR was 14% lower in the twins with MDD than in their brothers without MDD (2.36 vs 2.74) (P = .03). This association was not present in the monozygotic discordant pairs who were genetically matched (2.86 vs 2.64) (P = .19). The zygosity-MDD interaction after adjustment was significant (P = .006). The CFR in the dizygotic twins with MDD was also lower than in the control twins.

Conclusions  Our results provide evidence for a shared genetic pathway between MDD and microvascular dysfunction. Common pathophysiologic processes may link MDD and early atherosclerosis.

  X Pan , N Gong , J Zhao , Z Yu , F Gu , J Chen , X Sun , L Zhao , M Yu , Z Xu , W Dong , Y Qin , G Fei , C Zhong and T. L. Xu
 

Reduction of glucose metabolism in brain is one of the main features of Alzheimer’s disease. Thiamine (vitamin B1)-dependent processes are critical in glucose metabolism and have been found to be impaired in brains from patients with Alzheimer’s disease. However, thiamine treatment exerts little beneficial effect in these patients. Here, we tested the effect of benfotiamine, a thiamine derivative with better bioavailability than thiamine, on cognitive impairment and pathology alterations in a mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease, the amyloid precursor protein/presenilin-1 transgenic mouse. We show that after a chronic 8 week treatment, benfotiamine dose-dependently enhanced the spatial memory of amyloid precursor protein/presenilin-1 mice in the Morris water maze test. Furthermore, benfotiamine effectively reduced both amyloid plaque numbers and phosphorylated tau levels in cortical areas of the transgenic mice brains. Unexpectedly, these effects were not mimicked by another lipophilic thiamine derivative, fursultiamine, although both benfotiamine and fursultiamine were effective in increasing the levels of free thiamine in the brain. Most notably, benfotiamine, but not fursultiamine, significantly elevated the phosphorylation level of glycogen synthase kinase-3 and -3β, and reduced their enzymatic activities in the amyloid precursor protein/presenilin-1 transgenic brain. Therefore, in the animal Alzheimer’s disease model, benfotiamine appears to improve the cognitive function and reduce amyloid deposition via thiamine-independent mechanisms, which are likely to include the suppression of glycogen synthase kinase-3 activities. These results suggest that, unlike many other thiamine-related drugs, benfotiamine may be beneficial for clinical Alzheimer’s disease treatment.

  Y He , H Zhang , J Yin , J Xie , X Tan , S Liu , Q Zhang , C Li , J Zhao , H Wang and G. Cao
 

Genetic predisposition of nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-B)-signaling pathways linking inflammation to hepatitis B virus (HBV)-induced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) remains unresolved. We conducted a case–control study to determine the associations of the polymorphisms within the promoter regions of NFKB1 encoding NF-B1 and NFKBIA encoding IkappaBalpha with the development of HCC. A total of 404 healthy controls, 482 non-HCC subjects with HBV infection and 202 patients with HCC were included. NFKB1 –94ATTG2 allele and GG allele in the 3'-untranslated region of NFKBIA were more prevalent in HCC patients than in the healthy controls. NFKBIA –826CT and NFKBIA –881AG allelic carriages were more prevalent in HCC patients than in the non-HCC subjects with HBV infection. The estimated haplotype frequency of NFKBIA promoter –881G–826T–519C was significantly higher in the patients with HCC than in the HBV-infected subjects without HCC (odds ratio = 3.142, P = 0.002). As compared with the HBV-infected subjects without HCC, NFKBIA –826 T and NFKBIA –881AG allelic carriages were only associated with HCC risk in the subjects with HBV genotype C. The association of NFKBIA –881AG allelic carriage with HCC risk was not affected by liver cirrhosis (LC) status, alanine aminotransferase level and hepatitis B e antigen status. By multivariate regression analysis, NFKB1 –94ATTG2, NFKBIA –826T, NFKBIA –881AG and HBV genotype C were independently associated with an increased risk of HCC. In conclusion, NFKB1 –94ATTG2 allele and haplotype –881G–826T–519C in NFKBIA promoter were associated with hepatocarcinogenesis. NFKBIA –826T and –881AG were associated with the risk of HCC in the subjects infected with HBV genotype C.

  S Su , J Zhao , J. D Bremner , A. H Miller , W Tang , M Bouzyk , H Snieder , O Novik , N Afzal , J Goldberg and V. Vaccarino
 

Background— We explored the relationship of genetic variants of the serotonin transporter gene SLC6A4, a key regulator of the serotonergic neurotransmission, with both depressive symptoms and plasma interleukin-6 (IL-6) levels.

Methods and Results— We genotyped 20 polymorphisms in 360 male twins (mean age, 54 years) from the Vietnam Era Twin Registry. Current depressive symptoms were measured with the Beck Depression Inventory II. IL-6 was assessed using a commercially available ELISA kit. Genotype associations were analyzed using generalized estimating equations. To study how SLC6A4 genetic vulnerability influences the relationship between depressive symptoms and IL-6, bivariate models were constructed using structural equation modeling. Of the 20 polymorphisms examined, the effective number of independent tests was 6, and the threshold of significance after Bonferroni correction was 0.008. There were 6 single-nucleotide polymorphisms significantly associated with Beck Depression Inventory (P≤0.008), including rs8071667, rs2020936, rs25528, rs6354, rs11080122, and rs8076005, and 1 single-nucleotide polymorphism was borderline associated (rs12150214, P=0.017). Of these 7 single-nucleotide polymorphisms, 3 were also significantly associated with IL-6 (P<0.008), including rs25528, rs6354, and rs8076005, and the other 4 were borderline associated (P=0.009 to 0.025). The subjects with 1 copy of the minor allele of these 7 single-nucleotide polymorphisms had higher Beck Depression Inventory scores and IL-6 levels. Further bivariate modeling revealed that 10% of the correlation between Beck Depression Inventory and IL-6 could be explained by the SLC6A4 gene.

Conclusions— Genetic vulnerability involving the SLC6A4 gene is significantly associated with both increased depressive symptoms and elevated IL-6 plasma levels. Common pathophysiological processes may link depression and inflammation, and implicate the serotonin pathway in neural-immune interactions.

  M Chen , X Qiu , W Xu , L Wang , J Zhao and X. Li
 

Test case generation based on design specifications is an important part of testing processes. In this paper, Unified Modeling Language activity diagrams are used as design specifications. By setting up several test adequacy criteria with respect to activity diagrams, an automatic approach is presented to generate test cases for Java programs. Instead of directly deriving test cases from activity diagrams, this approach selects test cases from a set of randomly generated ones according to a given test adequacy criterion. In the approach, we first instrument a Java program under testing according to its activity diagram model, and randomly generate abundant test cases for the program. Then, by running the instrumented program we obtain the corresponding program execution traces. Finally, by matching these traces with the behavior of the activity diagram, a reduced set of test cases are selected according to the given test adequacy criterion. This approach can also be used to check the consistency between the program execution traces and the behavior of activity diagrams.

  X. j Zhou , J. c Lv , D. f Bu , L Yu , Y. r Yang , J Zhao , Z Cui , R Yang , M. h Zhao and H. Zhang
 

Anti-glomerular basement membrane antibody disease (anti-GBM disease) is a rare disorder characteristic of universally poor outcome. Fc receptors (FcRs) play important roles in anti-GBM disease based on evidence from animal models. Copy number variation (CNV) influences disease susceptibility. The FcRs genes show CNV, and CNV of the FCGR3B gene is associated with glomerulonephritis in systemic lupus erythematosus and anti-neutrophil cytoplasmic antibody-associated small vasculitis. Here, we investigated CNV of three FCGR genes, including two (FCGR3A and FCGR3B) for activating FcRs and one (FCGR2B) for inhibitory FcR by duplex quantitative real-time PCR. Copy numbers were analyzed by Applied Biosystems CopyCaller Software v1.0. We first demonstrated the distribution of CNV of FCGR3A, FCGR3B and no CNV of FCGR2B in Chinese population (including 47 anti-GBM patients and 146 healthy controls). The frequency of CNV of FCGR3A was observed to be significantly higher than matched healthy controls (27.7 versus 12.3%, P = 0.013, odds ratio 1.21–6.10). Considering previous report about gene knock-out animal models and CNV effect of FCGR3A, we thus propose that CNV in members of FCGR family should have different roles in the pathogenesis of human anti-GBM disease.

  J Zhao , T Liu , S. B Jin , N Tomilin , J Castro , O Shupliakov , U Lendahl and M. Nister
 

Although several proteins involved in mediating mitochondrial division have been reported in mammals, the mechanism of the fission machinery remains to be elucidated. Here, we identified a human nuclear gene (named MTGM) that encodes a novel, small, integral mitochondrial inner-membrane protein and shows high expression in both human brain tumor cell lines and tumor tissues. The gene is evolutionarily highly conserved, and its orthologs are 100% identical at the amino acid level in all analyzed mammalian species. The gene product is characterized by an unusual tetrad of the GxxxG motif in the transmembrane segment. Overexpression of MTGM (mitochondrial targeting GxxxG motif) protein results in mitochondrial fragmentation and release of mitochondrial Smac/Diablo to the cytosol with no effect on apoptosis. MTGM-induced mitochondrial fission can be blocked by a dominant negative Drp1 mutant (Drp1-K38A). Overexpression of MTGM also results in inhibition of cell proliferation, stalling of cells in S phase and...

  X Fang , X Li , B Stanton , Y Hong , L Zhang , G Zhao , J Zhao , X Lin and D. Lin
 

Objective To assess the relationship between parental HIV/AIDS and psychosocial adjustment of children in rural central China. Methods Participants included 296 double AIDS orphans (children who had lost both their parents to AIDS), 459 single orphans (children who had lost one parent to AIDS), 466 vulnerable children who lived with HIV-infected parents, and 404 comparison children who did not experience HIV/AIDS-related illness and death in their families. The measures included depressive symptoms, loneliness, self-esteem, future expectations, hopefulness about the future, and perceived control over the future. Results AIDS orphans and vulnerable children consistently demonstrated poorer psychosocial adjustment than comparison children in the same community. The level of psychosocial adjustment was similar between single orphans and double orphans, but differed by care arrangement among double orphans. Conclusion The findings underscore the urgency and importance of culturally and developmentally appropriate intervention efforts targeting psychosocial problems among children affected by AIDS and call for more exploration of risk and resilience factors, both individual and contextual, affecting the psychosocial wellbeing of these children.

  B Peng , L Cao , W Wang , L Xian , D Jiang , J Zhao , Z Zhang , X Wang and L. Yu
 

Matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) 1 and MMP3 are enzymes that degrade the extracellular matrix and have been implicated to play an important role in cancer development. Many studies have been carried out on the association between polymorphisms of MMP1 –1607 1G>2G and MMP3 –1171 5A>6A and cancer risk. However, results from these studies remain inconclusive. Here, we performed a meta-analysis of >38 000 subjects to better assess the purported associations. For MMP1, –1607 2G/2G genotype carriers were found to have an increased risk of colorectal cancer [2G/2G versus 2G/1G + 1G/1G, odds ratio (OR) = 1.48, 95% confidence interval (CI) (1.26–1.74), Pheterogeneity = 0.066, I2 = 49.3%], head and neck cancer [2G/2G versus 2G/1G + 1G/1G, OR = 1.61, 95% CI (1.26–2.07), Pheterogeneity = 0.002, I2 = 64.7%] and renal cancer [2G/2G versus 2G/1G + 1G/1G, OR = 1.82, 95% CI (1.38–2.39), Pheterogeneity = 0.589, I2 = 0.0%] risk. For MMP3, no association was found between –1171 5A>6A polymorphism and cancer risk in the overall group [6A versus 5A, OR = 1.00, 95% CI (0.95–1.05), Pheterogeneity = 0.124, I2 = 24.9%] and individual cancer subgroups, but stratified analysis by smoking status showed that this polymorphism had different effects on smokers and non-smokers under recessive genetic model. In summary, our study suggests that MMP1 –1607 2G may be associated with an increased cancer risk for certain types of cancers, MMP3 –1171 5A>6A may not be a major risk factor for cancer, but it may be modified by certain environmental factors. Future studies with larger sample sizes are warranted to further evaluate these associations in more detail.

  R Yang , T Hellmark , J Zhao , Z Cui , M Segelmark , M. h Zhao and H. y. Wang
 

Background. Although the clinical importance of demonstrating the presence of anti-glomerular basement membrane (anti-GBM) antibodies is well established, less is known concerning the clinical utility of measuring the levels of autoantibodies. Two conformational epitopes of anti-GBM antibodies have been defined at residues 17–31 and 127–141 of the 3(IV)NC1 domain of type IV collagen [3(IV)NC1], which were named as EA and EB, respectively. In order to elucidate the importance of such antibodies, we studied the levels and the epitope specificities of anti-GBM antibodies in a large cohort of Chinese patients with anti-GBM disease.

Methods. All patients, with anti-GBM disease and available clinical data, diagnosed at Peking University First Hospital from 1996 to 2005 were included in the present study. Recombinant chimeric proteins containing previously defined epitope regions designated as EA and EB were used to detect anti-GBM antibodies by ELISA. Results were compared and correlated with clinical data collected at the time of diagnosis, biopsy findings and outcome after 1 year of follow-up.

Results. A retrospective diagnosis of anti-GBM disease was made in 147 patients. Haemoptysis was recorded for 47% of these cases while 53.5% cases had oliguria or anuria at the time of diagnosis. Among these patients, the levels of anti-GBM antibodies correlated with serum creatinine at diagnosis (P < 0.05 for anti EA, EB and 3(IV)NC1). Oliguric patients had higher levels of autoantibodies than non-oliguric patients, however, the difference being statistically significant only for EB (P < 0.05). Renal biopsies were performed in 66 patients, and it was found that 50 (75.8%) had cresent formation in >85% of the glomeruli. There was a correlation between the percentage of crescents and levels of antibodies, but it was significant only for anti-EA antibodies (P < 0.05). Clinical data regarding the follow-up were available for 102 patients; at the end of 1 year, 88 (86.3%) were either dead or dialysis dependent. The absorbance values of anti-GBM antibodies against both EA and EB were also associated with the subsequent development, death or terminal renal insufficiency (P < 0.05).

Conclusion. In this study, patients with high levels of circulating antibodies against the specific epitopes EA and EB had a more severe renal disease at diagnosis as well as a worse prognosis.

  J Jia , C Wang , Z Shi , J Zhao , Y Jia , Z Zhao Hui , X Li , Z Chen and P. Zhu
 

Objective. To explore the therapeutic potential of CD147/HAb18 mAb in the treatment of RA in severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) mice engrafted with human cartilage and rheumatoid synovium tissue (SCID-HuRAg).

Methods. SCID-HuRAg mice were treated separately with CD147/HAb18 mAb, anti-TNF- mAb or a combination of both. The mice in control group were treated with anti-Japanese encephalitis virus mAb. The volume of engrafts was measured and the number of inflammatory cells and cartilage erosion score were examined. Expression of MMP-2, -3 and -9 was determined by immunohistochemistry. Human inflammatory cytokine levels in mouse sera were assessed using cytometric bead array kit.

Results. The volume of engrafts decreased significantly in SCID-HuRAg mice treated separately with anti-CD147 mAb or anti-TNF- mAb, and in the mice treated with anti-CD147 mAb plus anti-TNF- mAb (P < 0.05). Significant reduction was observed in cartilage erosion score in anti-CD147 treatment group and combined treatment group (P < 0.05). Immunohistochemical analysis showed that expression of MMP-2, -3 and -9 was lower in the anti-CD147 treatment group and combined treatment group than in the control mAb group (P < 0.05). Moreover, the level of TNF-, IL-6 and -8 in CD147 mAb group showed a significant decrease compared with that of the control mAb group (P < 0.05).

Conclusions. CD147/HAb18 mAb can reduce cartilage erosion and synovitis by inhibition of the MMPs and reduction of inflammatory cytokines in SCID-HuRAg mice, which suggests that CD147/HAb18 mAb is a promising treatment option for RA patients.

  C. R Sussman , J Zhao , C Plata , J Lu , C Daly , N Angle , J DiPiero , I. A Drummond , J. O Liang , W. F Boron , M. F Romero and M. H. Chang
 

Mutations in the electrogenic Na+/nHCO3 cotransporter (NBCe1, SLC4A4) cause severe proximal renal tubular acidosis, glaucoma, and cataracts in humans, indicating NBCe1 has a critical role in acid-base homeostasis and ocular fluid transport. To better understand the homeostatic roles and protein ontogeny of NBCe1, we have cloned, localized, and downregulated NBCe1 expression in zebrafish, and examined its transport characteristics when expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Zebrafish NBCe1 (zNBCe1) is 80% identical to published mammalian NBCe1 cDNAs. Like other fish NBCe1 clones, zebrafish NBCe1 is most similar to the pancreatic form of mammalian NBC (Slc4a4-B) but appears to be the dominant isoform found in zebrafish. In situ hybridization of embryos demonstrated mRNA expression in kidney pronephros and eye by 24 h postfertilization (hpf) and gill and brain by 120 hpf. Immunohistochemical labeling demonstrated expression in adult zebrafish eye and gill. Morpholino knockdown studies demonstrated roles in eye and brain development and caused edema, indicating altered fluid and electrolyte balance. With the use of microelectrodes to measure membrane potential (Vm), voltage clamp (VC), intracellular pH (pHi), or intracellular Na+ activity (aNai), we examined the function of zNBCe1 expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Zebrafish NBCe1 shared transport properties with mammalian NBCe1s, demonstrating electrogenic Na+ and HCO3 transport as well as similar drug sensitivity, including inhibition by 4,4'-diiso-thiocyano-2,2'-disulfonic acid stilbene and tenidap. These data indicate that NBCe1 in zebrafish shares many characteristics with mammalian NBCe1, including tissue distribution, importance in systemic water and electrolyte balance, and electrogenic transport of Na+ and HCO3. Thus zebrafish promise to be useful model system for studies of NBCe1 physiology.

 
 
 
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