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Articles by Z Chen
Total Records ( 19 ) for Z Chen
  J. S Lee , P Buzkova , H. A Fink , J Vu , L Carbone , Z Chen , J Cauley , D. C Bauer , A. R Cappola and J. Robbins

Background  Subclinical thyroid dysfunction is common in older adults and affects bone metabolism, but its effects on fracture risk have not been reported. We sought to determine prospectively whether older men and women with subclinical hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism have an increased risk of hip fracture.

Methods  Prospective cohort of 3567 US community-dwelling adults, 65 years or older, with biochemically defined subclinical thyroid dysfunction or euthyroidism was enrolled from June 10, 1989, through May 30, 1990, and followed up through 2004. Main outcome measures included incidence and hazard ratios (HRs), with 95% confidence intervals (CIs), of confirmed incident hip fractures for groups with subclinical hypothyroidism, subclinical hyperthyroidism, and euthyroidism as defined at baseline.

Results  During 39 952 person-years (median follow-up, 13 years), hip fracture incidence (per 1000 men-years) was 13.65 in men with subclinical hyperthyroidism (n = 29) and 10.27 in men with subclinical hypothyroidism (n = 184), both greater than 5.0 in men with euthyroidism (n = 1159). Men with subclinical hypothyroidism had a multivariable-adjusted HR of 2.31 (95% CI, 1.25-4.27); those with subclinical hyperthyroidism, 3.27 (0.99-11.30). After excluding those with baseline use of thyroid-altering medications, men with endogenous subclinical hyperthyroidism had a higher HR of 4.91 (95% CI, 1.13-21.27), as did men with endogenous subclinical hypothyroidism (2.45, 1.27-4.73). Hip fracture incidence (per 1000 women-years) was 8.93 in women with subclinical hypothyroidism (n = 359) and 10.90 in women with subclinical hyperthyroidism (n = 142) compared with 10.18 in women with euthyroidism (n = 1694). No clear association between subclinical dysfunction and fracture was observed in women.

Conclusions  Older men with subclinical hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism are at increased risk for hip fracture. Whether treatment of the subclinical syndrome reduces this risk is unknown.

  Z Chen and E. Tzima

Objective— Vascular remodeling is a physiological process that occurs in response to long-term changes in hemodynamic conditions, but may also contribute to the pathophysiology of intima-media thickening (IMT) and vascular disease. Shear stress detection by the endothelium is thought to be an important determinant of vascular remodeling. Previous work showed that platelet endothelial cell adhesion molecule-1 (PECAM-1) is a component of a mechanosensory complex that mediates endothelial cell (EC) responses to shear stress.

Methods and Results— We tested the hypothesis that PECAM-1 contributes to vascular remodeling by analyzing the response to partial carotid artery ligation in PECAM-1 knockout mice and wild-type littermates. PECAM-1 deficiency resulted in impaired vascular remodeling and significantly reduced IMT in areas of low flow. Inward remodeling was associated with PECAM-1-dependent NFB activation, surface adhesion molecule expression, and leukocyte infiltration as well as Akt activation and vascular cell proliferation.

Conclusions— PECAM-1 plays a crucial role in the activation of the NFB and Akt pathways and inflammatory cell accumulation during vascular remodeling and IMT. Elucidation of some of the signals that drive vascular remodeling represent pharmacologically tractable targets for the treatment of restenosis after balloon angioplasty or stent placement.

  Y He , A Dagher , Z Chen , A Charil , A Zijdenbos , K Worsley and A. Evans

White matter tracts, which play a crucial role in the coordination of information flow between different regions of grey matter, are particularly vulnerable to multiple sclerosis. Many studies have shown that the white matter lesions in multiple sclerosis are associated with focal abnormalities of grey matter, but little is known about the alterations in the coordinated patterns of cortical morphology among regions in the disease. Here, we used cortical thickness measurements from structural magnetic resonance imaging to investigate the relationship between the white matter lesion load and the topological efficiency of structural cortical networks in multiple sclerosis. Network efficiency was defined using a ‘small-world’ network model that quantifies the effectiveness of information transfer within brain networks. In this study, we first classified patients (n = 330) into six subgroups according to their total white matter lesion loads, and identified structural brain networks for each multiple sclerosis group by thresholding the corresponding inter-regional cortical thickness correlation matrix, followed by a network efficiency analysis with graph theoretical approaches. The structural cortical networks in multiple sclerosis demonstrated efficient small-world architecture regardless of the lesion load, an organization that maximizes the information processing at a relatively low wiring cost. However, we found that the overall small-world network efficiency in multiple sclerosis was significantly disrupted in a manner proportional to the extent of total white matter lesions. Moreover, regional efficiency was also significantly decreased in specific brain regions, including the insula and precentral gyrus as well as regions of prefrontal and temporal association cortices. Finally, we showed that the lesions also altered many cortical thickness correlations in the frontal, temporal and parietal lobes. Our results suggest that the white matter lesions in multiple sclerosis might be associated with aberrant neuronal connectivity among widely distributed brain regions, and provide structural (morphological) evidence for the notion of multiple sclerosis as a disconnection syndrome.

  A.R.M. R Amin , F. R Khuri , Z Chen and D. M. Shin

We have previously reported that the green tea polyphenol epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) and the epidermal growth factor receptor-tyrosine kinase inhibitor erlotinib had synergistic growth-inhibitory effects in cell culture and a nude mouse xenograft model of squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck. However, the mechanism of their antitumor synergism is not fully understood. In the current study, we investigate the mechanism of their synergistic growth-inhibitory effects. The treatment of squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck cell lines with erlotinib time-dependently increased the expression of cell cycle regulatory proteins p21 and p27 and apoptosis regulatory protein Bim. EGCG alone had very little or no effect on the expression of these proteins among the cell lines. However, simultaneous treatment with EGCG and erlotinib strongly inhibited erlotinib-induced expression of p21 and p27 without affecting the expression of Bim. Moreover, erlotinib increased the expression of p53 protein, the ablation of which by short hairpin RNA strongly inhibited EGCG- and erlotinib-mediated growth inhibition and the expression of p21, p27, and Bim. In addition, combined treatment with erlotinib and EGCG inhibited the protein level of p65 subunit of nuclear factor-B and its transcriptional target Bcl-2, but failed to do so in cells with ablated p53. Taken together, our results, for the first time, suggest that erlotinib treatment activates p53, which plays a critical role in synergistic growth inhibition by erlotinib and EGCG via inhibiting nuclear factor-B signaling pathway. Characterizing the underlying mechanisms of EGCG and erlotinib synergism will provide an important rationale for chemoprevention or treatment trials using this combination.

  P Wang , Z Chen , Z. Q Meng , J Fan , J. M Luo , W Liang , J. H Lin , Z. H Zhou , H Chen , K Wang , Y. H Shen , Z. D Xu and L. M. Liu

Ski used to be defined as an oncogene that contributes to the resistance of tumor cells to transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β)-induced growth arrest. As TGF-β has a dual effect on tumor growth with both tumor-suppressing and -promoting activity depending on the stage of carcinogenesis and the cell type, the precise role of Ski in carcinogenesis remains unclear. In this study, we show that downregulation of Ski through lentivirus-mediated RNA interference decreases tumor growth both in vitro and in vivo, yet promotes cell invasiveness in vitro, and lung metastasis in vivo in the pancreatic cancer cell line SW1990, which contain wild-type Smad4 expression, and the BxPC3 cell line, which is Smad4 deficient. We also show that the downregulation of Ski increases TGF-β-induced transcriptional activity, which is associated with increased TGF-β-dependent Smad2/3 phosphorylation, and results in an altered expression profile of TGF-β-inducible genes involved in metastasis, angiogenesis and cell proliferation and epithelial–mesenchymal transition. Immunohistochemical analysis of specimens from 71 patients with pancreatic adenocarcinoma showed a significant association between overexpression of Ski and decreased patient survival time (P = 0.0024). Our results suggest that Ski may act as a tumor proliferation-promoting factor or as a metastatic suppressor in human pancreatic cancer.

  J Oh , S Weng , S. K Felton , S Bhandare , A Riek , B Butler , B. M Proctor , M Petty , Z Chen , K. B Schechtman , L Bernal Mizrachi and C. Bernal Mizrachi

Background— Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death among those with diabetes mellitus. Vitamin D deficiency is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease in this population. To determine the mechanism by which vitamin D deficiency mediates accelerated cardiovascular disease in patients with diabetes mellitus, we investigated the effects of active vitamin D on macrophage cholesterol deposition.

Methods and Results— We obtained macrophages from 76 obese, diabetic, hypertensive patients with vitamin D deficiency (25-hydroxyvitamin D <80 nmol/L; group A) and 4 control groups: obese, diabetic, hypertensive patients with normal vitamin D (group B; n=15); obese, nondiabetic, hypertensive patients with vitamin D deficiency (group C; n=25); and nonobese, nondiabetic, nonhypertensive patients with vitamin D deficiency (group D; n=10) or sufficiency (group E; n=10). Macrophages from the same patients in all groups were cultured in vitamin D—deficient or 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 [1,25(OH)2D3] –supplemented media and exposed to modified low-density lipoprotein cholesterol. 1,25(OH)2D3 suppressed foam cell formation by reducing acetylated or oxidized low-density lipoprotein cholesterol uptake in diabetic subjects only. Conversely, deletion of the vitamin D receptor in macrophages from diabetic patients accelerated foam cell formation induced by modified LDL. 1,25(OH)2D3 downregulation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase activation reduced peroxisome proliferated–activated receptor- expression, suppressed CD36 expression, and prevented oxidized low-density lipoprotein–derived cholesterol uptake. In addition, 1,25(OH)2D3 suppression of macrophage endoplasmic reticulum stress improved insulin signaling, downregulated SR-A1 expression, and prevented oxidized and acetylated low-density lipoprotein–derived cholesterol uptake.

Conclusion— These results identify reduced vitamin D receptor signaling as a potential mechanism underlying increased foam cell formation and accelerated cardiovascular disease in diabetic subjects.

  X Wang , W Xie , Y Zhang , P Lin , L Han , P Han , Y Wang , Z Chen , G Ji , M Zheng , N Weisleder , R. P Xiao , H Takeshima , J Ma and H. Cheng

Rationale: Unrepaired cardiomyocyte membrane injury causes irreplaceable cell loss, leading to myocardial fibrosis and eventually heart failure. However, the cellular and molecular mechanisms of cardiac membrane repair are largely unknown. MG53, a newly identified striated muscle-specific protein, is involved in skeletal muscle membrane repair. But the role of MG53 in the heart has not been determined.

Objective: We sought to investigate whether MG53 mediates membrane repair in cardiomyocytes and, if so, the cellular and molecular mechanism underlying MG53-mediated membrane repair in cardiomyocytes. Moreover, we determined possible cardioprotective effect of MG53-mediated membrane repair.

Methods and Results: We demonstrated that MG53 is crucial to the emergency membrane repair response in cardiomyocytes and protects the heart from stress-induced loss of cardiomyocytes. Disruption of the sarcolemmal membrane by mechanical, electric, chemical, or metabolic insults caused rapid and robust translocation of MG53 toward the injury sites. Ablation of MG53 prevented sarcolemmal resealing after infrared laser–induced membrane damage in intact heart, and exacerbated mitochondrial dysfunction and loss of cardiomyocytes during ischemia/reperfusion injury. Unexpectedly, the MG53-mediated cardiac membrane repair was mediated by a cholesterol-dependent mechanism: depletion of membrane cholesterol abolished, and its recovery restored injury-induced membrane translocation of MG53. The redox status of MG53 did not affect initiation of MG53 translocation, whereas MG53 oxidation conferred stability to the membrane repair patch.

Conclusions: Thus, cholesterol-dependent MG53-mediated membrane repair is a vital, heretofore unappreciated cardioprotective mechanism against a multitude of insults and may bear important therapeutic implications.

  T Suzuki , B. M Palmer , J James , Y Wang , Z Chen , P VanBuren , D. W Maughan , J Robbins and M. M. LeWinter

Background— The left ventricles of both rabbits and humans express predominantly β-myosin heavy chain (MHC). Transgenic (TG) rabbits expressing 40% -MHC are protected against tachycardia-induced cardiomyopathy, but the normal amount of -MHC expressed in humans is only 5% to 7% and its functional importance is questionable. This study was undertaken to identify a myofilament-based mechanism underlying tachycardia-induced cardiomyopathy protection and to extrapolate the impact of MHC isoform variation on myofilament function in human hearts.

Methods and Results— Papillary muscle strips from TG rabbits expressing 40% (TG40) and 15% -MHC (TG15) and from nontransgenic (NTG) controls expressing 100% β-MHC (NTG40 and NTG15) were demembranated and calcium activated. Myofilament tension and calcium sensitivity were similar in TGs and respective NTGs. Force-clamp measurements revealed 50% higher power production in TG40 versus NTG40 (P<0.001) and 20% higher power in TG15 versus NTG15 (P<0.05). A characteristic of acto-myosin crossbridge kinetics, the "dip" frequency, was significantly higher in TG40 versus NTG40 (0.70±0.04 versus 0.39±0.09 Hz, P<0.01) but not in TG15 versus NTG15. The calculated crossbridge time-on was also significantly shorter in TG40 (102.3±14.2 ms) versus NTG40 (175.7±19.7 ms) but not in TG15 versus NTG15.

Conclusions— The incorporation of 40% -MHC leads to greater myofilament power production and more rapid crossbridge cycling, which facilitate ejection and relengthening during short cycle intervals, and thus protect against tachycardia-induced cardiomyopathy. Our results suggest, however, that, even when compared with the virtual absence of -MHC in the failing heart, the 5% to 7% -MHC content of the normal human heart has little if any functional significance.

  Z Chen , A Delis and P. Wei

Intrusion prevention systems (IPSs) not only attempt to detect attacks but also block malicious traffic and pro-actively tear down pertinent network connections. To effectively thwart attacks, IPSs have to operate both in real-time and inline fashion. This dual mode renders the design/implementation and more importantly the testing of IPSs a challenge. In this paper, we propose an IPS testing framework termed IPS Evaluator which consists of a trace-driven inline simulator-engine, mechanisms for generating and manipulating test cases, and a comprehensive series of test procedures. The engine features attacker and victim interfaces which bind to the external and internal ports of an IPS-under-testing (IUT). Our engine employs a bi-directional injection policy to ensure that replayed packets are subject to security inspection by the IUT before they are forwarded. Furthermore, the send-and-receive mechanism of our engine allows for the correlation of engine-replayed and IUT-forwarded packets as well as the verification of IUT actions on detected attacks. Using dynamic addressing and routing techniques, our framework rewrites both source and destination addresses for every replayed packet on-the-fly. In this way, replayed packets conform to the specific features of the IUT. We propose algorithms to partition attacker/victim-emanated packets so that they are subjected to security inspections by the IUT and in addition, we offer packet manipulation operations to shape replayed traces. We discuss procedures that help verify the IUT's detection and prevention accuracy, attack coverage and behavior under diverse traffic patterns. Finally, we evaluate the strengths of our framework by mainly examining the open-source IPS Snort-Inline. IPS deficiencies revealed during testing help establish the effectiveness of our approach.

  Z Chen , Y Zhang and A. Delis

Intrusion detection/prevention systems (IDSs/IPSs) heavily rely on signature databases and pattern matching (PM) techniques to identify network attacks. The engines of such systems often employ traditional PM algorithms to search for telltale patterns in network flows. The observations that real-world network traffic is largely legitimate and that telltales manifested by exploits rarely appear in network streams lead us to the proposal of Fingerprinter. This framework integrates fingerprinting and PM methods to rapidly distinguish well-behaved from malicious traffic. Fingerprinter produces concise digests or fingerprints for attack signatures during its programming phase. In its querying phase, the framework quickly identifies attack-free connections by transforming input traffic into its fingerprint space and matching its digest against those of attack signatures. If the legitimacy of a stream cannot be determined by fingerprints alone, our framework uses the Boyer–Moore algorithm to ascertain whether attack signatures appear in the stream. To reduce false matches, we resort to multiple fingerprinting techniques including Bloom–Filter and Rabin–Fingerprint. Experimentation with a prototype and a variety of traces has helped us establish that Fingerprinter significantly accelerates the attack detection process.

  T Zhang , Z Chen , Y Ouyang , J Hao and Z. Xiong

The location awareness is a crucial foundation for perceptions of the surroundings in the smart environment. Radio frequency identification (RFID), as one of the most promising technologies, plays a more important role in the indoor location awareness. This paper surveys current RFID-based locating research and discusses the problem that is brought by the tag's diversity derived from different manufacturer types and different used-time of built-in battery. We present the algorithm named RFDiffFreeLoc to improve the location precision by eliminating the dissimilarity among tags. In the stimulation experiments, we analyze the impact of noise on performance and contrast our algorithm with the existing LANDMARC algorithm. The simulation performances show that our algorithm is feasible via two metrics: the mean error and cumulative error distribution. The results indicate that RFDiffFreeLoc significantly increases the locating accuracy: when the space between the reference tags is 1 m, the mean error drops 0.076–0.344 m according to various noise conditions. Furthermore, a prototype system named RFHome is deployed for validating the algorithm in the actual home environment. The practical experimental results demonstrate that our algorithm is more effective than previous LANDMARC algorithm.

  T Fei , K Xia , Z Li , B Zhou , S Zhu , H Chen , J Zhang , Z Chen , H Xiao , J. D. J Han and Y. G. Chen

Embryonic stem (ES) cells are under precise control of both intrinsic self-renewal gene regulatory network and extrinsic growth factor-triggered signaling cascades. How external signaling pathways connect to core self-renewal transcriptional circuits is largely unknown. To probe this, we chose BMP signaling, which is previously recognized as a master control for both self-renewal and lineage commitment of murine ES cells. Here, we mapped target gene promoter occupancy of SMAD1/5 and SMAD4 on a genome-wide scale and found that they associate with a large group of developmental regulators that are enriched for H3K27 trimethylation and H3K4 trimethylation bivalent marks and are repressed in the self-renewing state, whereas they are rapidly induced upon differentiation. Smad knockdown experiments further indicate that SMAD-mediated BMP signaling is largely required for differentiation-related processes rather than directly influencing self-renewal. Among the SMAD-associated genes, we further identified Dpysl2 (previously known as Crmp2) and the H3K27 demethylase Kdm6b (previously known as Jmjd3) as BMP4-modulated early neural differentiation regulators. Combined with computational analysis, our results suggest that SMAD-mediated BMP signaling balances self-renewal versus differentiation by modulating a set of developmental regulators.

  C Li , Z Chen , Z Liu , J Huang , W Zhang , L Zhou , D. L Keefe and L. Liu

Mammalian parthenogenetic embryos (pE) are not viable due to placental deficiency, presumably resulting from lack of paternally expressed imprinted genes. Pluripotent parthenogenetic embryonic stem (pES) cells derived from pE could advance regenerative medicine by avoiding immuno-rejection and ethical roadblocks. We attempted to explore the epigenetic status of imprinted genes in the generation of pES cells from parthenogenetic blastocysts, and its relationship to pluripotency of pES cells. Pluripotency was evaluated for developmental and differentiation potential in vivo, based on contributions of pES cells to chimeras and development to day 9.5 of pES fetuses complemented by tetraploid embryos (TEC). Consistently, pE and fetuses failed to express paternally expressed imprinted genes, but pES cells expressed those genes in a pattern resembling that of fertilized embryos (fE) and fertilized embryonic stem (fES) cells derived from fE. Like fE and fES cells, but unlike pE or fetuses, pES cells and pES cell–fetuses complemented by TEC exhibited balanced methylation of Snrpn, Peg1 and U2af1-rs1. Coincidently, global methylation increased in pE but decreased in pES cells, further suggesting dramatic epigenetic reprogramming occurred during isolation and culture of pES cells. Moreover, we identified decreased methylation of Igf2r, Snrpn, and especially U2af1-rs1, in association with increased contributions of pES cells to chimeras. Our data show that in vitro culture changes epigenetic status of imprinted genes during isolation of pES cells from their progenitor embryos and that increased expression of U2af1-rs1 and Snrpn and decreased expression of Igf2r correlate with pluripotency of pES cells.

  X Du , Z Chen , W Li , Y Tan , J Lu , X Zhu , T Zhao , G Dong and L. Zeng

The objectives of this study are to establish microsatellite loci for the Mongolian gerbil based on mouse microsatellite DNA sequences and to investigate genetic variation in the laboratory gerbil (Capital Medical University, CMU) and 2 wild gerbil populations (from Yin Chuan city [YIN] and the Hohehot Municipality [HOH]). In total, 536 mouse microsatellite markers were chosen to identify polymorphic dinucleotide repeat loci in the gerbil by cross-amplification. Of these markers, 313 (58.39%) have been discretely amplified from the CMU laboratory gerbil and been sequenced. Of the 313 sequenced markers, 130 were confirmed as simple sequence repeat (SSR) loci in the gerbil. In total, 6 of those newly identified loci plus 6 identified in previous reports were used to estimate the genetic polymorphism for 30 laboratory gerbils and 54 wild gerbils (27 each of the HOH and YIN groups). A total of 29 alleles were observed in the 3 populations, and 11 of 12 loci (91.67%) are polymorphic markers. Nei's standard genetic distances of 0.0592 (CMU vs. HOH) and 0.1033 (CMU vs. YIN) were observed. The averages of observed versus expected heterozygosity are 0.5231/0.4008, 0.5051/0.3882, and 0.4825/0.3665 for the YIN, HOH, and CMU populations, respectively. These results show that cross-amplification using mouse microsatellite primers is an efficient way to identify gerbil SSR loci. By using these 12 selected markers, we have demonstrated that genetic variation level within the CMU population is higher than that has been reported previously and are comparable with the levels found in 2 wild populations.

  Y Fu , Z Chen , A. I. F Blakemore , E Orwoll and D. M. Cohen

Copy number variation (CNV) is increasingly recognized as a source of phenotypic variation among humans. We hypothesized that a CNV in the human arginine vasopressin receptor-2 gene (AVPR2) would be associated with serum sodium concentration based on the following lines of evidence: 1) the protein product of the AVPR2 gene is essential for renal water conservation; 2) mutations in the AVPR2 gene are associated with aberrant water balance in humans; 3) heritability of serum sodium concentration may be greater in females than in males; 4) the AVPR2 gene is X-linked; and 5) a common CNV spanning the AVPR2 gene was recently described in a non-Hispanic Caucasian population. We developed a highly reproducible assay for AVPR2 CNV. Among 279 subjects with measured serum sodium concentration in the Offspring Cohort of the Framingham Heart Study, no subjects exhibited CNV at the AVPR2 locus. Among 517 subjects in the Osteoporotic Fractures in Men Study (MrOS)—including 152 with hyponatremia and 183 with hypernatremia—no subjects with CNV at the AVPR2 locus were identified. CNV at the AVPR2 locus could not be independently confirmed, and CNV at the AVPR2 gene is unlikely to influence systemic water balance on a population-wide basis in non-Hispanic Caucasian subjects. A novel AVPR2 single nucleotide polymorphism affecting the reporter hybridization site gave rise to an artifactually low copy number signal (i.e., less than unity) in one male African American subject. Reanalysis of the original comparative genomic hybridization data revealed bona fide CNVs flanking—but not incorporating—the AVPR2 gene, consistent with our new genotyping data.

  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.

  L Malureanu , K. B Jeganathan , F Jin , D. J Baker , J. H van Ree , O Gullon , Z Chen , J. R Henley and J. M. van Deursen

Cdc20 is an activator of the anaphase-promoting complex/cyclosome that initiates anaphase onset by ordering the destruction of cyclin B1 and securin in metaphase. To study the physiological significance of Cdc20 in higher eukaryotes, we generated hypomorphic mice that express small amounts of this essential cell cycle regulator. In this study, we show that these mice are healthy and not prone to cancer despite substantial aneuploidy. Cdc20 hypomorphism causes chromatin bridging and chromosome misalignment, revealing a requirement for Cdc20 in efficient sister chromosome separation and chromosome–microtubule attachment. We find that cyclin B1 is newly synthesized during mitosis via cytoplasmic polyadenylation element–binding protein-dependent translation, causing its rapid accumulation between prometaphase and metaphase of Cdc20 hypomorphic cells. Anaphase onset is significantly delayed in Cdc20 hypomorphic cells but not when translation is inhibited during mitosis. These data reveal that Cdc20 is particularly rate limiting for cyclin B1 destruction because of regulated de novo synthesis of this cyclin after prometaphase onset.

  S Gras , Z Chen , J. J Miles , Y. C Liu , M. J Bell , L. C Sullivan , L Kjer Nielsen , R. M Brennan , J. M Burrows , M. A Neller , R Khanna , A. W Purcell , A. G Brooks , J McCluskey , J Rossjohn and S. R. Burrows

In comparison to human leukocyte antigen (HLA) polymorphism, the impact of allelic sequence variation within T cell receptor (TCR) loci is much less understood. Particular TCR loci have been associated with autoimmunity, but the molecular basis for this phenomenon is undefined. We examined the T cell response to an HLA-B*3501–restricted epitope (HPVGEADYFEY) from Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), which is frequently dominated by a TRBV9*01+ public TCR (TK3). However, the common allelic variant TRBV9*02, which differs by a single amino acid near the CDR2β loop (Gln55->His55), was never used in this response. The structure of the TK3 TCR, its allelic variant, and a nonnaturally occurring mutant (Gln55->Ala55) in complex with HLA-B*3501HPVGEADYFEY revealed that the Gln55->His55 polymorphism affected the charge complementarity at the TCR–peptide-MHC interface, resulting in reduced functional recognition of the cognate and naturally occurring variants of this EBV peptide. Thus, polymorphism in the TCR loci may contribute toward variability in immune responses and the outcome of infection.

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