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Articles from this Volume

Chun Xi Liu, Qin Hu, Yan Wang, Wei Zhang, Zhi Yong Ma, Jin Bo Feng, Rong Wang, Xu Ping Wang, Bo Dong, Fei Gao, Ming Xiang Zhang, and Yun Zhang
 
Diabetic nephropathy is clinically characterized by proteinuria and progressive renal insufficiency. Current standards of treatment include angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, which block the pathogenic role of the renin-angiotension system. Reduced expression of ACE2 in kidneys of diabetic patients suggests this enzyme plays a role in diabetic nephropathy. Here, Liu et al. examined the renoprotective effects of ACE2 gene transfer in an experimental model of diabetic nephropathy. The authors show ACE2 exerts a renoprotective effect similar to that of ACE inhibition. This data suggests further studies into ACE2 gene targeting and therapy are warranted as potential avenues of research for the treatment of diabetic nephropathy.

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Supplementary Data PDF
Posted by MolMed Editor on Feb 1, 2011 12:00 AM CST
Shuchen Gu, Natalia Papadopoulou, Omaima Nasir, Michael Föller, Konstantinos Alevizopoulos, Florian Lang, and Christos Stournaras
 
Cancer biology is, by necessity, focused on cell survival and cell migration. Cell signaling molecules, such as membrane androgen receptors (mARs), may serve as crucial relays informing cancer cells to stop dividing and to begin apoptosis. In this article, Gu et al. examined the role of mAR activation in the context of the pro-survival PI-3 kinase/Akt pathway in vitro and in vivo. They found that upon mAR stimulation, PI-3K and Akt activity were decreased with a concomitant increase in apoptosis. They also demonstrate that mAR activation reduces intestinal tumor incidence in mice. These studies may ultimately result in the development of anti-tumorigenic strategies based on specific mAR activation.

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Supplementary Data PDF
Posted by MolMed Editor on Jan 9, 2011 12:00 AM CST
Yung-Bin Kuo, Chung-Chuan Chan, C Allen Chang, Chung-Wei Fan, Ray-Ping Hung, Ya-Shu Hung, Kuei-Tien Chen, Jau-Song Yu, Yu-Sun Chang, and Err-Cheng Chan
 
Effective treatment of colorectal cancer (CRC), the third most common cancer worldwide, is dependent on early detection and intervention. However, current non-invasive identification measures would be significantly improved by the addition of novel biomarkers of the early disease state. In this study, Kuo et al. select and examine phospholipid scramblase 1 (PLSCR1) as a candidate biomarker for CRC. The authors found that PLSCR1 was significantly elevated in CRC patients (compared with healthy individuals) and was also substantially increased in early-stage CRC. The authors conclude decreased PLSCR1 expression is associated with longer patient survival and since plasma levels of PLSCR1 were significantly elevated in CRC patients, that PLSCR1 could be both a novel diagnostic biomarker and an important prognostic factor for CRC.

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Supplementary Data PDF
Posted by MolMed Editor on Jan 8, 2011 12:00 AM CST
Angeliki Margoni, Despoina N Perrea, Ioannis Vlachos, Georgia Prokopaki, Alkistis Pantopoulou, Lambros Fotis, Maria Kostaki, and Athanasios G Papavassiliou
 
The increasing prevalence of obesity and type 1 diabetes mellitus (DM I) constitute a major global health problem. Adipose tissue regulates energy balance, glucose and lipid metabolism by secretion of adipocytokines such as leptin and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-a). In the present study, Margoni et al. compared the lipid profiles and serum levels of leptin, adiponectin and TNF-a in experimental diabetic models using different dietary manipulations. Their findings implicate that serum levels of leptin, adiponectin and TNF-a may serve as markers of obesity and/or DM 1. Although further work is necessary, the authors suggest these molecules may serve as prognostic indicies in cases of subclinical dyslipidemia/DM I.

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Posted by MolMed Editor on Jan 7, 2011 12:00 AM CST
Annette Bruchfeld, Mårten Wendt, Johan Bratt, Abdul R Qureshi, Sangeeta Chavan, Kevin J Tracey, Karin Palmblad, and Iva Gunnarsson
 
ANCA-associated vasculitis (AAV) describes the primary small-vessel systemic vasculitic disorders associated with antineutrophilic cytoplasmatic antibodies (ANCAs). The kidneys are commonly affected, which has important implications for patient therapy and long-term outcome. HMGB1 (High Mobility Group Box 1) is a nuclear and cytosolic protein shown to stimulate necrosis-induced inflammation and elevated levels in serum have been documented in clinical inflammatory conditions including chronic kidney disease. Bruchfeld et al. investigated whether HMGB1 levels are elevated in AAV with renal manifestations and if these levels correspond to disease activity. Data demonstrated HMGB1 levels were significantly increased in patients with AAV with renal involvement, but also remained higher in inactive cases compared with controls. These findings may reflect persistent low-grade inflammatory activity in AAV despite an appearance of clinical and histopathological renal remission or organ damage. Future studies may show whether HMGB1 may be useful as a biomarker for disease activity or as a predictor of outcomes in AAV.

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Posted by MolMed Editor on Jan 6, 2011 12:00 AM CST
Dimitrios S Milingos, Anastassios Philippou, Athanassios Armakolas, Efstathia Papageorgiou, Antigone Sourla, Athanassios Protopapas, Anthi Liapi, Aris Antsaklis, Minas Mastrominas, and Michael Koutsilieris
 
Endometriosis, a gynecological condition that is prevalent in women of reproductive age, is associated with the appearance of endometrial-like cells outside the uterine cavity. Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) prevents apoptosis and has mitogenic action on endometrial cells. The IGF-1 gene undergoes alternative splicing resulting in three isoforms, including IGF-1Ec, also called mechano growth factor (MGF). In the present study, Milingos et al. demonstrate that both eutopic and ectopic endometrium express all IGF-1 isoforms; however, endometriotic cysts express at significantly lower levels. Furthermore, a synthetic MGF peptide stimulated human cell line growth independent of both IGF-1 and insulin receptor. These findings indicate that the IGF-1Ec transcripts may generate another post-translational bioactive product that may have an important role in endometriosis pathophysiology.

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Posted by MolMed Editor on Jan 5, 2011 12:00 AM CST
Mu-Yan Cai, Jing-Hui Hou, Hui-Lan Rao, Rong-Zhen Luo, Mei Li, Xiao-Qing Pei, Marie C Lin, Xin-Yuan Guan, Hsiang-Fu Kung, Yi-Xin Zeng, and Dan Xie
 
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), a primary malignancy of the live, often results in poor prognosis partly due to increased intrahepatic metasis and/or vascular invasion. The molecular pathogenesis of HCC involves well-defined genetic and epigenetic events. Trimethylation of lysine 27 on histone H3 (H3K27me3) is a crucial epigenetic process in tumorigenesis and is involved in progression of various types of human cancers such as prostate, breast, ovarian, pancreatic and esophageal cancers. In a study that involved two independent HCC patient cohorts, Cai et al. report high levels of H3K27me3 correlate with large tumor size, multiplicity, poor differentiation and advanced clinical stage of vascular invasion and is closely associated with shortened survival time in HCC patients. This study provides evidence that H3K27me3 is an independent molecular marker for poor prognosis of patients with HCC.

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Posted by MolMed Editor on Jan 4, 2011 12:00 AM CST
Yoon Sin Oh, Tae Sup Lee, Gi Jeong Cheon, Iksoon Jang, Hee-Sook Jun, and Sang Chul Park
 
Type 2 diabetes, the most common form of diabetes, is characterized by insulin resistance and insulin deficiency. The onset of type 2 diabetes in old age is more prevalent in men than in women, suggesting sex hormones may affect development. Caveolin-1 regulates insulin signaling and steroid hormone signaling and decreased expression levels have been correlated with development of a diabetic phenotype. In this work, Oh et al. demonstrate that sex hormones modulate the expression of caveolin-1 and insulin signaling molecules, subsequently affecting insulin sensitivity and the development of type 2 diabetes in experimental models. 

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Posted by MolMed Editor on Jan 3, 2011 12:00 AM CST
Commentary
 
Christopher J Czura

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Posted by MolMed Editor on Jan 2, 2011 12:00 AM CST
Editorial
 
Margot Puerta

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Posted by MolMed Editor on Jan 1, 2011 12:00 AM CST
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