Articles from MDPI


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  • Panksep, Kristel; Tamm, Marju; Mantzouki, Evanthia; Rantala-Ylinen, Anne; Laugaste, Reet; Sivonen, Kaarina; Tammeorg, Olga; Kisand, Veljo (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    Global warming, paired with eutrophication processes, is shifting phytoplankton communities towards the dominance of bloom-forming and potentially toxic cyanobacteria. The ecosystems of shallow lakes are especially vulnerable to these changes. Traditional monitoring via microscopy is not able to quantify the dynamics of toxin-producing cyanobacteria on a proper spatio-temporal scale. Molecular tools are highly sensitive and can be useful as an early warning tool for lake managers. We quantified the potential microcystin (MC) producers in Lake Peipsi using microscopy and quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) and analysed the relationship between the abundance of the <i>mcyE </i>genes, MC concentration, MC variants and toxin quota per <i>mcyE</i> gene. We also linked environmental factors to the cyanobacteria community composition. In Lake Peipsi, we found rather moderate MC concentrations, but microcystins and microcystin-producing cyanobacteria were widespread across the lake. Nitrate (NO<sub>3</sub><sup>&minus;</sup>) was a main driver behind the cyanobacterial community at the beginning of the growing season, while in late summer it was primarily associated with the soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP) concentration. A positive relationship was found between the MC quota per <i>mcyE</i> gene and water temperature. The most abundant variant&mdash;MC-RR&mdash;was associated with MC quota per <i>mcyE</i> gene, while other MC variants did not show any significant impact.
  • Ruuska, Toni; Heikkurinen, Pasi; Wilén, Kristoffer (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    In this article, we study politics as domination. From our point of view, domination, especially in the Anthropocene, has had two vital components&mdash;power and supremacy. In order to dominate, one has to have power over others. In addition, the politics of domination, such as colonial oppression of Latin America, has required reasoning, justification, and legitimation, often connected to superiority (because of religion, society, or civilization) from the oppressor&rsquo;s end. Past and present political ideologies and programs, such as colonialism, imperialism, but also welfare state capitalism, neoliberalism and increasingly popular Green New Deal are examples of what we call &ldquo;anthropolitics,&rdquo; an anthropocentric approach to politics based on domination, power, and supremacist exploitation. In contrast to the prevailing anthropolitics, this article discusses post-Anthropocene politics, characterized by localization and decentralization, as well as a steep reduction of matter&ndash;energy throughput by introducing a theoretical frame called ecological realism.
  • Heiniö, Camilla; Havunen, Riikka; Santos, Joao; Lint, Klaas de; Cervera-Carrascon, Victor; Kanerva, Anna; Hemminki, Akseli (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    In order to break tumor resistance towards traditional treatments, we investigate the response of tumor and immune cells to a novel, cytokine-armed oncolytic adenovirus: Ad5/3-d24-E2F-hTNFa-IRES-hIL2 (also known as TILT-123 and OAd.TNFa-IL2). There are several pattern recognition receptors (PRR) that might mediate adenovirus-infection recognition. However, the role and specific effects of each PRR on the tumor microenvironment and treatment outcome remain unclear. Hence, the aim of this study was to investigate the effects of OAd.TNFa-IL2 infection on PRR-mediated danger- and pathogen-associated molecular pattern (DAMP and PAMP, respectively) signaling. In addition, we wanted to see which PRRs mediate an antitumor response and are therefore relevant for optimizing this virotherapy. We determined that OAd.TNFa-IL2 induced DAMP and PAMP release and consequent tumor microenvironment modulation. We show that the AIM2 inflammasome is activated during OAd.TNFa-IL2 virotherapy, thus creating an immunostimulatory antitumor microenvironment.
  • Wang, Ai-Fang; Di, Bao; Repo, Tapani; Roitto, Marja; Zhang, Gang (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    Background and Objectives: Drought occurs more frequently in Northern China with the advent of climate change, which might increase the mortality of tree seedlings after afforestation due to hydraulic failure. Therefore, investigating water relations helps us understand the drought tolerance of tree seedlings. Electrical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) is widely used to assess the responses of plant tissues to stress factors and may potentially reveal the water relations of cells. The aim of this study is to reveal the relationships between EIS and water related parameters, produced by pressure&ndash;volume (PV) curves in lacebark pine (<i>Pinus bungeana</i> <i>Zucc.</i>) seedlings reacting to drought stress. Materials and Methods: Four-year-old pot seedlings were divided into three parts (0, 5, and 10 days of drought) before planting, the treated seedlings were then replanted, and finally exposed to post-planting drought treatments with the following soil relative water contents: (i) adequate irrigation (75%&ndash;80%), (ii) light drought (55%&ndash;60%), (iii) moderate drought (35%&ndash;40%), and (iv), severe drought (15%&ndash;20%). During the post-planting growth phase, the EIS parameters of needles and shoots, and the parameters of PV curves, were measured coincidently; thus, the correlations between them could be obtained. Results: The extracellular resistance (<i>r</i><sub>e</sub>) of needles and shoots were substantially reduced after four weeks of severe post-planting drought stress. Meanwhile, the osmotic potential at the turgor-loss point (&psi;<sub>tlp</sub>) and the saturation water osmotic potential (&psi;<sub>sat</sub>) of shoots decreased after drought stress, indicating an osmotic adjustment in acclimating to drought. The highest correlations were found between the intracellular resistance (<i>r</i><sub>i</sub>) of the shoots and &psi;<sub>tlp</sub> and &psi;<sub>sat</sub>. <b>Conclusions:</b> EIS parameters can be used as a measure of drought tolerance. The change in intracellular resistance is related to the osmotic potential of the cell and cell wall elasticity. Extracellular resistance is a parameter that shows cell membrane damage in response to drought stress in lacebark pine seedlings.
  • Harkko, Jaakko; Sumanen, Hilla; Pietiläinen, Olli; Piha, Kustaa; Mänty, Minna; Lallukka, Tea; Rahkonen, Ossi; Kouvonen, Anne (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    Occupational health service (OHS) is the main provider of primary care services for the working population in Finland. We investigated whether socioeconomic differences in the utilization of OHS predict sickness absence (SA) due to mental disorders. We used register linkage data covering the employees of the City of Helsinki aged 18&ndash;34 years (<i>N</i> = 6545) and 35&ndash;54 years (<i>N</i> = 15,296) from 2009 to 2014. The outcome was medically certified long-term (over 11 days) SA due to mental disorders. Cox regression analyses were performed to obtain hazard ratios (HR) and their 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Employees with low socioeconomic position (SEP) used OHS more frequently. The number of OHS visits independently predicted SA due to mental disorders. HRs were 1.59 (95% CI 1.35, 1.86) for those with frequent visits and 1.73 (95% CI 1.30, 2.29) for those with a clustered visit pattern among 18&ndash;34 year old employees; and 1.46 (95% CI 1.18, 1.81) and 1.41 (95% CI 1.14, 1.74) among 35&ndash;54 year old employees, respectively. In both age groups, lower education and routine non-manual worker position indicated the highest probability of SA. Low SEP predicts both high OHS utilization and subsequent SA due to mental disorders. Medical records may be used to accurately predict future SA, and the results indicate that preventive measures should be targeted particularly to younger employees with lower SEP.
  • Stepanova, Nadezhda; Gritsenko, Daria; Gavrilyeva, Tuyara; Belokur, Anna (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    Extreme environmental conditions, sparsely distributed human populations, and diverse local economies characterize the Russian Arctic and Far East. There is an urgent need for multidisciplinary research into how the Arctic and Far East can be developed sustainably as global changes in the environment and the economic priorities of nations accelerate and globalized societies emerge. Yet, when it comes to sustainability indicators, little consideration has been given thus far to sparsely populated and remote territories. Rather, the majority of indicators have been developed and tested while using empirical research gathered from cities and densely populated rural localities. As a result, there is no scientific technique that can be used to monitor the development of sparsely populated territories and inform the decisions of policymakers who hope to account for local specificity. This article suggests a conceptual model for linking sustainability to the unique characteristics of the sparsely populated regions of the Arctic and Far East. We provide an empirical illustration that is based on regional-level data from the sparsely populated territories of the Russian Federation. We conclude by suggesting indicators that could be best suited to promoting balanced regional development that accounts for the environment, economy, and social needs of sparsely populated territories.
  • Mazac, Rachel; Tuomisto, Hanna L. (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    This article examines how future diets could reduce the environmental impacts of food systems, and thus, enable movement into the post-Anthropocene. Such non-anthropocentric diets are proposed to address global food systems challenges inherent in the current geological epoch known as the Anthropocene&mdash;a period when human activity is the dominant cause of environmental change. Using non-anthropocentric indigenous worldviews and object-oriented ecosophy, the article discusses changes in ontologies around diets to consider choices made in the present for sustainable future food systems. This article conceptually addresses, how can pre-Anthropocene ontologies guide an exit of current approaches to diets? Considering temporality, what post-Anthropocene ontologies are possible in future diets for sustainable food systems? Through the ontological positions defining three distinct temporalities, considerations for guiding future diets in(to) the post-Anthropocene are proposed. Indigenous ontologies are presented as pre-Anthropocene examples that depict humans and non-humans in relational diets. Underlying Anthropocene ontologies define current unsustainable diets. These ontologies are described to present the context for the food systems challenges this article aims to address. A post-Anthropocene illustration then employs object-oriented ecosophy along with indigenous ontologies as theoretical foundations for shifting from the dominant neoliberal paradigm in current ontologies. Ontologically-based dietary guidelines for the post-Anthropocene diet present the ontological turns, consideration of temporality, and outline technological orientations proposed for sustainable future food systems. This is a novel attempt to integrate non-anthropocentric theories to suggest possible futures for human diets in order to exit the Anthropocene epoch. These non-anthropocentric ontologies demonstrate how temporal considerations and relational worldviews can be guidelines for transforming diets to address public health concerns, the environmental crisis, and socioeconomic challenges.
  • Nousiainen, Maija; Koponen, Ismo T. (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    Learning the wave-particle dualism of electrons and photons plays a central role in understanding quantum physics. Teaching it requires that the teacher is fluent in using abstract and uncommon terms. We inspect the lexical structures of pre-service teachers&rsquo; declarative knowledge about the wave-particle dualism of electrons and photons in the context of double-slit interference. The declarative knowledge is analyzed in the form of a lexical network of terms. We focus on lexical structures because, in teaching and learning, knowledge is communicated mostly through lexical structures, i.e., by speaking and writing. Using the lexical networks, we construct the lexicons used by pre-service teachers to express their knowledge of electrons and photons in the context of double-slit interference. The lexicons consist of eight different key terms, each representing a set of closely-related or synonymous terms. The lexicons by 14 pre-service teachers reveal remarkable variation and differences, and are strongly context-dependent. We also analyzed lexicons corresponding to two didactically-oriented research articles on the same topic and found that they also differ. Lexicons paralleling both texts are found among the pre-service teachers&rsquo; lexicons. However, only some of the pre-service teachers use such rich vocabulary as would indicate multi-faceted understanding of quantum entities.
  • Andersson, Emma I.; Brück, Oscar; Braun, Till; Mannisto, Susanna; Saikko, Leena; Lagström, Sonja; Ellonen, Pekka; Leppä, Sirpa; Herling, Marco; Kovanen, Panu E.; Mustjoki, Satu (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    Peripheral T-cell lymphomas (PTCL) are a heterogeneous, and often aggressive group of non-Hodgkin lymphomas. Recent advances in the molecular and genetic characterization of PTCLs have helped to delineate differences and similarities between the various subtypes, and the JAK/STAT pathway has been found to play an important oncogenic role. Here, we aimed to characterize the JAK/STAT pathway in PTCL subtypes and investigate whether the activation of the pathway correlates with the frequency of <i>STAT</i> gene mutations. Patient samples from AITL (<i>n</i> = 30), ALCL (<i>n</i> = 21) and PTCL-NOS (<i>n</i> = 12) cases were sequenced for <i>STAT3</i>, <i>STAT5B, JAK1, JAK3,</i> and <i>RHOA</i> mutations using amplicon sequencing and stained immunohistochemically for pSTAT3, pMAPK, and pAKT. We discovered <i>STAT3</i> mutations in 13% of AITL, 13% of ALK<sup>+</sup> ALCL, 38% of ALK<sup>&minus;</sup> ALCL and 17% of PTCL-NOS cases. However, no <i>STAT5B</i> mutations were found and <i>JAK</i> mutations were only present in ALK<sup>-</sup> ALCL (15%). Concurrent mutations were found in all subgroups except ALK<sup>+</sup> ALCL where <i>STAT3</i> mutations were always seen alone. High pY-STAT3 expression was observed especially in AITL and ALCL samples. When studying JAK-STAT pathway mutations, pY-STAT3 expression was highest in PTCLs harboring either <i>JAK1</i> or <i>STAT3</i> mutations and CD30<sup>+</sup> phenotype representing primarily ALK<sup>&minus;</sup> ALCLs. Further investigation is needed to elucidate the molecular mechanisms of JAK-STAT pathway activation in PTCL.
  • Rathod, Ramji; Gajera, Bharat; Nazir, Kenneth; Wallenius, Janne; Velagapudi, Vidya (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    The tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle is a central part of carbon and energy metabolism, also connecting to glycolysis, amino acid, and lipid metabolism. The quantitation of the TCA cycle intermediate within one method is lucrative due to the interest in central carbon metabolism profiling in cells and tissues. In addition, TCA cycle intermediates in serum have been discovered to correspond as biomarkers to various underlying pathological conditions. In this work, an Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry/Mass Spectrometry-based quantification method is developed and validated, which takes advantage of fast, specific, sensitive, and cost-efficient precipitation extraction. Chromatographic separation is achieved while using Atlantis dC18 2.1 mm &times; 100 mm, particle size 3-&mu;m of Waters column with a gradient elution mobile phase while using formic acid in water (0.1% <i>v</i>/<i>v</i>) and acetonitrile. Linearity was clearly seen over a calibration range of: 6.25 to 6400 ng/mL (r<sup>2</sup> &gt; 0.980) for malic acid; 11.72 to 12,000 ng/mL (r<sup>2</sup> &gt; 0.980) for cis-aconitic acid and L-aspartic acid; 29.30 to 30,000 ng/mL (r<sup>2</sup> &gt; 0.980) for isocitric acid, <span style="font-variant: small-caps;">l</span>-serine, and <span style="font-variant: small-caps;">l</span>-glutamic acid; 122.07 to 125,000 ng/mL (r<sup>2</sup> &gt; 0.980) for citric acid, glycine, <i>oxo</i>-glutaric acid, <span style="font-variant: small-caps;">l</span>-alanine, and <span style="font-variant: small-caps;">l</span>-glutamine; 527.34 to 540,000 ng/mL (r<sup>2</sup> &gt; 0.980) for <span style="font-variant: small-caps;">l</span>-lactic acid; 976.56 to 1,000,000 ng/mL (r<sup>2</sup> &gt; 0.980) for <span style="font-variant: small-caps;">d</span>-glucose; 23.44 to 24,000 ng/mL (r<sup>2</sup> &gt; 0.980) for fumaric acid and succinic acid; and, 244.14 to 250,000 ng/mL (r<sup>2</sup> &gt; 0.980) for pyruvic acid. Validation was carried out, as per European Medicines Agency (EMA) &ldquo;guidelines on bioanalytical method validation&rdquo;, for linearity, precision, accuracy, limit of detection (LOD), limit of quantification (LLOQ), recovery, matrix effect, and stability. The recoveries from serum and tissue were 79&ndash;119% and 77&ndash;223%, respectively. Using this method, we measured TCA intermediates in serum, plasma (NIST 1950 SRM), and in mouse liver samples. The concentration found in NIST SRM 1950 (<i>n</i> = 6) of glycine (246.4 &micro;mol/L), <span style="font-variant: small-caps;">l</span>-alanine (302.4 &micro;mol/L), and serine (92.9 &micro;mol/L).
  • Kontro, Inkeri; Génois, Mathieu (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    Student belongingness is important for successful study paths, and group work forms an important part of modern university physics education. To study the group dynamics of introductory physics students at the University of Helsinki, we collected network data from seven laboratory course sections of approximately 20 students each for seven consecutive weeks. The data was collected via the SocioPatterns platform, and supplemented with students&rsquo; major subject, year of study and gender. We also collected the Mechanics Baseline Test to measure physics knowledge and the Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey to measure attitudes. We developed metrics for studying the small networks of the laboratory sessions by using connections of the teaching assistant as a constant. In the network, we found both demographically homogeneous and heterogeneous groups that are stable. While some students are consistently loosely connected to their networks, we were not able to identify risk factors. Based on our results, the physics laboratory course is equally successful in building strongly connected groups regardless of student demographics in the sections or the formed small groups. SocioPatterns supplemented with surveys thus provides an opportunity to look into the dynamics of students&rsquo; social networks.
  • Lehtola, Susi; Blockhuys, Frank; Van Alsenoy, Christian (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    A uniform derivation of the self-consistent field equations in a finite basis set is presented. Both restricted and unrestricted Hartree&ndash;Fock (HF) theory as well as various density functional approximations are considered. The unitary invariance of the HF and density functional models is discussed, paving the way for the use of localized molecular orbitals. The self-consistent field equations are derived in a non-orthogonal basis set, and their solution is discussed also in the presence of linear dependencies in the basis. It is argued why iterative diagonalization of the Kohn&ndash;Sham&ndash;Fock matrix leads to the minimization of the total energy. Alternative methods for the solution of the self-consistent field equations via direct minimization as well as stability analysis are briefly discussed. Explicit expressions are given for the contributions to the Kohn&ndash;Sham&ndash;Fock matrix up to meta-GGA functionals. Range-separated hybrids and non-local correlation functionals are summarily reviewed.
  • Pflugmacher, Stephan; Sulek, Amalia; Mader, Hannah; Heo, Jeongin; Noh, Ji Hyeon; Penttinen, Olli-Pekka; Kim, YoungJun; Kim, Sanghun; Esterhuizen, Maranda (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    With the increase in environmental monitoring and assessing, we are gaining insight into the extent of microplastic pollution in our environment. The threat posed by microplastics to biota could come, e.g., from leached substances. As some plastic materials have been decaying in nature for extended periods already, the toxic effects of leaching compounds need to be investigated. It is furthermore essential to understand the adverse effects of new plastic and how these effects differ from the effects elicited by old plastic material. Therefore, in the present study, the effects of exposure to leachates from new and artificial aged polycarbonate as well as new and aged polycarbonate granules on various germination parameters of <i>Lepidium sativum </i>were studied. Germination, root, and shoot length, as well as the calculated germination rate index as a measure for germination speed, was negatively influenced in substrate-free and substrate containing exposures. From an ecological and agricultural point of view, this implies possible yield losses with less germinating seeds, slower plant germination speed, and smaller seedlings in general.
  • Otaru, Sofia; Imlimthan, Surachet; Sarparanta, Mirkka; Helariutta, Kerttuli; Wähälä, Kristiina; Airaksinen, Anu J. (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    Fluorine-18 is the most widely used positron emission tomography (PET) radionuclide currently in clinical application, due to its optimal nuclear properties. The synthesis of <sup>18</sup>F-labeled radiotracers often requires harsh reaction conditions, limiting the use of sensitive bio- and macromolecules as precursors for direct radiolabeling with fluorine-18. We aimed to develop a milder and efficient in vitro and in vivo labeling method for trans-cyclooctene (TCO) functionalized proteins, through the bioorthogonal inverse-electron demand Diels-Alder (IEDDA) reaction with fluorine-18 radiolabeled tetrazine ([<sup>18</sup>F]SiFA-Tz). Here, we used TCO-modified bovine serum albumin (BSA) as the model protein, and isotopic exchange (IE) (<sup>19</sup>F/<sup>18</sup>F) chemistry as the labeling strategy. The radiolabeling of albumin-TCO with [<sup>18</sup>F]SiFA-Tz ([<sup>18</sup>F]<b>6</b>), providing [<sup>18</sup>F]fluoroalbumin ([<sup>18</sup>F]<b>10</b>) in high radiochemical yield (99.1 &plusmn; 0.2%, <i>n</i> = 3) and a molar activity (MA) of 1.1 GBq/&micro;mol, confirmed the applicability of [<sup>18</sup>F]<b>6</b> as a quick in vitro fluorination reagent for the TCO functionalized proteins. While the biological evaluation of [<sup>18</sup>F]<b>6</b> demonstrated defluorination in vivo, limiting the utility for pretargeted applications, the in vivo stability of the radiotracer was dramatically improved when [<sup>18</sup>F]<b>6</b> was used for the radiolabeling of albumin-TCO ([<sup>18</sup>F]<b>10</b>) in vitro, prior to administration. Due to the detected defluorination in vivo, structural optimization of the prosthetic group for improved stability is needed before further biological studies and application of pretargeted PET imaging.
  • du Toit, Marié J.; Kotze, D. Johan; Cilliers, Sarel S. (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    Sustainable urban nature conservation calls for a rethinking of conventional approaches. Traditionally, conservationists have not incorporated the history of the landscape in management strategies. This study shows that extant vegetation patterns are correlated to past landscapes indicating potential extinction debts. We calculated urban landscape measures for seven time periods (1938&ndash;2019) and correlated it to three vegetation sampling events (1995, 2012, 2019) using GLM models. We also tested whether urban vegetation was homogenizing. Our results indicated that urban vegetation in our study area is not currently homogenizing but that indigenous forb species richness is declining significantly. Furthermore, long-term studies are essential as the time lags identified for different vegetation sampling periods changed as well as the drivers best predicting these changes. Understanding these dynamics are critical to ensuring sustainable conservation of urban vegetation for future citizens.
  • Rautamo, Maria; Kvarnström, Kirsi; Sivén, Mia; Airaksinen, Marja; Lahdenne, Pekka; Sandler, Niklas (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    The utilization of three-dimensional (3D) printing technologies as innovative manufacturing methods for drug products has recently gained growing interest. From a technological viewpoint, proof-of-concept on the performance of different printing methods already exist, followed by visions about future applications in hospital or community pharmacies. The main objective of this study was to investigate the perceptions of healthcare professionals in a tertiary university hospital about oral 3D-printed medicines for pediatric patients by means of focus group discussions. In general, the healthcare professionals considered many positive aspects and opportunities in 3D printing of pharmaceuticals. A precise dose as well as personalized doses and dosage forms were some of the advantages mentioned by the participants. Especially in cases of polypharmacy, incorporating several drug substances into one product to produce a polypill, personalized regarding both the combination of drug substances and the doses, would benefit drug treatments of several medical conditions and would improve adherence to medications. In addition to the positive aspects, concerns and prerequisites for the adoption of 3D printing technologies at hospital settings were also expressed. These perspectives are suggested by the authors to be focus points for future research on personalized 3D-printed drug products.
  • Rautava, Jaana; Gürsoy, Ulvi K.; Kullström, Adrian; Könönen, Eija; Sorsa, Timo; Tervahartiala, Taina; Gürsoy, Mervi (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    The diagnostic accuracy of point-of-care (PoC) applications may be compromised in individuals with additional inflammatory conditions. This cross-sectional study examined the performance of a commercial oral rinse active matrix metalloproteinase-8 (aMMP-8) PoC immunotest in individuals with (<em>n</em> = 47) and without Crohn&rsquo;s disease (CD) (<em>n</em> = 41). Oral rinse collected from the participants was analyzed by the PoC immunotest. Molecular forms and fragments of salivary MMP-8 were detected by western immunoblotting. The sensitivity of the immunotest for periodontitis was 60.0% in the CD group and 90.0% in the control group. The respective specificity was 75.0% and 80.0%. In both groups, clinical diagnosis of periodontitis exhibited a significant association with the immunotest results, however, the odds ratio (OR) was more than ten-fold in controls (OR 54.3, 95% CI: 3.1&ndash;953, <em>p </em>= 0.006) in comparison to CD patients (OR 5.2, 95% CI: 1.3&ndash;21.6, <em>p </em>= 0.022). According to Western immunoblot results, the immunotest MMP-8 positivity was not related to elevated levels of molecular forms and fragments of MMP-8 in the CD group, as in the control group. The diagnostic accuracy of the aMMP-8 PoC oral rinse immunotest is reduced in CD patients, which may be related to lower levels or undetectable complexes.
  • Asghar, Muhammad Yasir; Törnquist, Kid (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    Calcium (Ca<sup>2+</sup>) is perhaps the most versatile signaling molecule in cells. Ca<sup>2+</sup> regulates a large number of key events in cells, ranging from gene transcription, motility, and contraction, to energy production and channel gating. To accomplish all these different functions, a multitude of channels, pumps, and transporters are necessary. A group of channels participating in these processes is the transient receptor potential (TRP) family of cation channels. These channels are divided into 29 subfamilies, and are differentially expressed in man, rodents, worms, and flies. One of these subfamilies is the transient receptor potential canonical (TRPC) family of channels. This ion channel family comprises of seven isoforms, labeled TRPC1&ndash;7. In man, six functional forms are expressed (TRPC1, TRPC3&ndash;7), whereas TRPC2 is a pseudogene; thus, not functionally expressed. In this review, we will describe the importance of the TRPC channels and their interacting molecular partners in the etiology of cancer, particularly in regard to regulating migration and invasion.
  • Díaz, Silvia; De Francisco, Patricia; Olsson, Sanna; Aguilera, Ángeles; González-Toril, Elena; Martín-González, Ana (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    The cytotoxicity of cadmium (Cd), arsenate (As(V)), and arsenite (As(III)) on a strain of <i>Chlamydomonas acidophila</i>, isolated from the Rio Tinto, an acidic environment containing high metal(l)oid concentrations, was analyzed. We used a broad array of methods to produce complementary information: cell viability and reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation measures, ultrastructural observations, transmission electron microscopy energy dispersive x-ray microanalysis (TEM&ndash;XEDS), and gene expression. This acidophilic microorganism was affected differently by the tested metal/metalloid: It showed high resistance to arsenic while Cd was the most toxic heavy metal, showing an LC<sub>50</sub> = 1.94 &micro;M. Arsenite was almost four-fold more toxic (LC<sub>50</sub>= 10.91 mM) than arsenate (LC<sub>50</sub> = 41.63 mM). Assessment of ROS generation indicated that both arsenic oxidation states generate superoxide anions. Ultrastructural analysis of exposed cells revealed that stigma, chloroplast, nucleus, and mitochondria were the main toxicity targets. Intense vacuolization and accumulation of energy reserves (starch deposits and lipid droplets) were observed after treatments. Electron-dense intracellular nanoparticle-like formation appeared in two cellular locations: inside cytoplasmic vacuoles and entrapped into the capsule, around each cell. The chemical nature (Cd or As) of these intracellular deposits was confirmed by TEM&ndash;XEDS. Additionally, they also contained an unexpected high content in phosphorous, which might support an essential role of poly-phosphates in metal resistance.
  • Han, Liuyang; Tian, Xingling; Keplinger, Tobias; Zhou, Haibin; Li, Ren; Svedström, Kirsi; Burgert, Ingo; Yin, Yafang; Guo, Juan (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020)
    Structural and chemical deterioration and its impact on cell wall mechanics were investigated for visually intact cell walls (VICWs) in waterlogged archaeological wood (WAW). Cell wall mechanical properties were examined by nanoindentation without prior embedding. WAW showed more than 25% decrease of both hardness and elastic modulus. Changes of cell wall composition, cellulose crystallite structure and porosity were investigated by ATR-FTIR imaging, Raman imaging, wet chemistry, <sup>13</sup>C-solid state NMR, pyrolysis-GC/MS, wide angle X-ray scattering, and N<sub>2</sub> nitrogen adsorption. VICWs in WAW possessed a cleavage of carboxyl in side chains of xylan, a serious loss of polysaccharides, and a partial breakage of &beta;-O-4 interlinks in lignin. This was accompanied by a higher amount of mesopores in cell walls. Even VICWs in WAW were severely deteriorated at the nanoscale with impact on mechanics, which has strong implications for the conservation of archaeological shipwrecks.

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