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  • 1
    Publication Date: 2012-06-15
    Description: Background: Single-stranded DNA binding proteins (SSB) are essential for DNA replication, repair, and recombination in all organisms. SSB works in concert with a variety of DNA metabolizing enzymes such as DNA polymerase. Results: We have cloned and purified SSB from Bacillus anthracis (SSBBA). In the absence of DNA, at concentrations [less than or equal to]100 mug/ml, SSBBA did not form a stable tetramer and appeared to resemble bacteriophage T4 gene 32 protein. Fluorescence anisotropy studies demonstrated that SSBBA bound ssDNA with high affinity comparable to other prokaryotic SSBs. Thermodynamic analysis indicated both hydrophobic and ionic contributions to ssDNA binding. FRET analysis of oligo(dT)70 binding suggested that SSBBA forms a tetrameric assembly upon ssDNA binding. This report provides evidence of a bacterial SSB that utilizes a novel mechanism for DNA binding through the formation of a transient tetrameric structure. Conclusions: Unlike other prokaryotic SSB proteins, SSBBA from Bacillus anthracis appeared to be monomeric at concentrations [less than or equal to]100 mug/ml as determined by SE-HPLC. SSBBA retained its ability to bind ssDNA with very high affinity, comparable to SSB proteins which are tetrameric. In the presence of a long ssDNA template, SSBBA appears to form a transient tetrameric structure. Its unique structure appears to be due to the cumulative effect of multiple key amino acid changes in its sequence during evolution, leading to perturbation of stable dimer and tetramer formation. The structural features of SSBBA could promote facile assembly and disassembly of the protein-DNA complex required in processes such as DNA replication.
    Electronic ISSN: 1471-2091
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology
    Published by BioMed Central
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  • 2
    Publication Date: 2015-10-31
    Description: Background: In humans, many diseases are associated with the accumulation of free radicals. Antioxidants can scavenge free radicals and minimize their impact. Therefore, the search for naturally occurring antioxidants of plant origin is imperative. Here, we aimed to investigate the antioxidant and free radical scavenging properties of methanolic extracts from Tabebuia pallida (T. pallida) stem bark (TPSB), root bark (TPRB), leaves (TPL), and flowers (TPF). Methods: The antioxidant and free radical scavenging activity were determined by several standard methods using spectrophotomer. Total phenolic and flavonoid contents were estimated using Folin-Ciocalteu reagent and aluminum chloride colorimetric assay methods, respectively. Results: Among the extracts, TPL showed the highest total antioxidant capacity followed by TPRB, TPF, and TPSB. Based on DPPH and hydroxyl radical scavenging activity, TPL showed strong scavenging activity (91.05 ± 1.10 and 62.00 ± 0.57) with IC 50 of 9.20 ± 0.28 and 46.00 ± 2.84 μg/mL, respectively when compared with standard BHT (IC 50 of 7.00 ± 0.25 μg/mL) and CA (75.00 ± 0.14 μg/mL). These results suggest that TPL had the highest radical scavenging activity among the extractives that closely resembled the standard’s. In lipid peroxidation inhibition assay, TPL exhibited the most potent inhibitory activity (83.18 ± 2.12 %) with IC 50 of 12.00 ± 2.12 μg/mL, which closely resembled standard CA (IC 50 of 10.50 ± 0.28 μg/mL). Also, the reducing capacity on ferrous ion was in the following order: TPL 〉 TPRB 〉 TF 〉 TPSB. The phenolic and flavonoid contents of TPL were higher than other extractives. A positive correlation (p value
    Electronic ISSN: 1756-0500
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Published by BioMed Central
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2014-07-18
    Description: Background: Procalcitonin is useful for the diagnosis of sepsis but its prognostic value regarding mortality is unclear. This prospective observational study was designed to study the prognostic value of procalcitonin in prediction of 28 day mortality in patients of sepsis. Fifty-four consecutive patients of sepsis, severe sepsis and septic shock defined using the 2001 Consensus Conference SCCM/ESICM/ACCP/ATS/SIS criteria from medical Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of a tertiary care center in New Delhi, India were enrolled from July 2011 to June 2013. Procalcitonin (PCT), C-reactive protein (CRP) measurements were recorded on day 1, day 7 and day 28 of follow up. Results: Procalcitonin value was a better predictor of all-cause short-term mortality than C-reactive protein. Those patients with Procalcitonin levels
    Electronic ISSN: 1756-0500
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Published by BioMed Central
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  • 4
    Publication Date: 2014-07-22
    Description: Background: Procalcitonin is useful for the diagnosis of sepsis but its prognostic value regarding mortality is unclear. This prospective observational study was designed to study the prognostic value of procalcitonin in prediction of 28 day mortality in patients of sepsis. Fifty-four consecutive patients of sepsis, severe sepsis and septic shock defined using the 2001 Consensus Conference SCCM/ESICM/ACCP/ATS/SIS criteria from medical Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of a tertiary care center in New Delhi, India were enrolled from July 2011 to June 2013. Procalcitonin (PCT), C-reactive protein (CRP) measurements were recorded on day 1, day 7 and day 28 of follow up. Results: Procalcitonin value was a better predictor of all-cause short-term mortality than C-reactive protein. Those patients with Procalcitonin levels
    Electronic ISSN: 1756-0500
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Published by BioMed Central
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  • 5
    Publication Date: 2014-10-11
    Description: Background: Heat stress leads to accelerated production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) which causes a huge amount of oxidative damage to the cellular components of plants. A large number of heat stress related genes as HSPs, catalases, peroxidases are overexpressed at the time of stress. A potent stress responsive gene peroxisomal ascorbate peroxidase (TapAPX) obtained from heat stress (42[degree sign]C) responsive subtractive cDNA library from a thermo tolerant wheat cv. Raj3765 at anthesis stage was cloned, characterized and its role was validated under heat stress by proteomics and in-silico studies.. In the present study we report the characterization at molecular and in-silico level of peroxisomal TapAPX gene isolated from heat tolerant wheat cultivar of India. Results: qPCR studies of TapAPX gene displayed up to 203 fold level of expression at 42[degree sign]C heat stress exposure. A full length cDNA of 876 bp obtained by RACE deduced a protein of 292 amino acid residues which gives a complete 3D structure of pAPX by homology modeling. TapAPX cDNA was cloned in expression vector pET28 (a+) and the recombinant protein over-expressed in E. coli BL21 showed highest homology with APX protein as deduced by peptide mass fingerprinting. Conclusions: TapAPX gene from wheat cv Raj3765 has a distinct role in conferring thermo tolerance to the plants and thus can be used in crop improvement programmes for development of crops tolerant to high temperature.
    Electronic ISSN: 1756-0500
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Published by BioMed Central
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  • 6
    Publication Date: 2014-09-04
    Description: Background: Elevated glucose concentrations lead to increased insulin secretion and suppression of glucagon secretion. In fact, insulin is a physiological inhibitor of glucagon secretion. Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) patients have defects in insulin secretion. In addition to this, lack of suppression of glucagon secretion under elevated glucose concentrations is also observed in T2DM patients. We have earlier shown that GPR40 activation by CNX-011-67 stimulates glucose stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS). Here we extended our studies to examine the impact of GPR40 activation by CNX-011-67 on glucagon secretion from intact islets under both normal and glucolipotoxic conditions.FindingsGlucagon secretion from intact rat islets was suppressed under elevated glucose concentration. Activation of GPR40 by CNX-011-67 further suppressed glucagon secretion. Culturing islets under chronic glucolipotoxic (GL) conditions, we have observed increased high glucose mediated glucagon secretion and content which were reduced with GPR40 activation by CNX-011-67. Interestingly, expression of pre-proglucagon gene (GCG) remained unchanged under glucolipotoxicity in the presence or absence of GPR40 activation. Conclusion: Activation of GPR40 by CNX-011-67 can reduce glucagon secretion from pancreatic islets.
    Electronic ISSN: 1756-0500
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Published by BioMed Central
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  • 7
    Publication Date: 2014-07-01
    Description: Background: Chronic inflammation-mediated beta-cell apoptosis is known to decrease beta-cell mass in diabetes leading to reduced insulin secretion. Exposure to pro-inflammatory cytokines can stimulate apoptosis in pancreatic beta-cells. The G protein coupled receptor 40 (GPR40) is implicated for glucose induced insulin secretion. We hypothesized that GPR40 activation can protect beta-cells from inflammation-induced apoptosis and restore glucose stimulated insulin secretion. Results: By exposing NIT1 insulinoma cells and rat islets to a cocktail of pro-inflammatory cytokines (TNFalpha and IL1beta), we mimicked inflammatory signaling as seen by JNK and NFkappaB activation and increased mRNA levels of TNFalpha, IL1beta and NOS2a. These changes were reversed by pharmacological activation of GPR40 by a specific, small molecule, CNX-011-67. Further, GPR40 activation reduced inflammation-mediated oxidative and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stresses. Importantly, GPR40 activation decreased inflammation-induced apoptosis as measured by key markers. These impacts of GPR40 were mediated through activation of PLC, CaMKII, calcineurin and cAMP. Cell survival was also enhanced by GPR40 activation as seen from the increased phosphorylation of Akt/PKB and enhanced expression of BCL2 and PDX1 genes. Interestingly, GPR40 activation restored both, inflammation-mediated inhibition on insulin secretion and intracellular insulin content. Conclusions: In this study, we provide evidences that CNX-011-67, a GPR40 agonist, reduces inflammatory signaling and apoptosis in pancreatic beta-cell while promoting insulin secretion and synthesis. Activation of GPR40 leads to attenuation of beta-cell dysfunction caused by chronic inflammation and thus could be of immense clinical value to improve insulin secretion and beta-cell survival.
    Electronic ISSN: 1471-2121
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Published by BioMed Central
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  • 8
    Publication Date: 2013-07-02
    Description: Background: In the progression towards diabetes, glucolipotoxicity is one of the main causes of pancreatic beta cell pathology. The aim of this study was to examine the in vitro effects of chronic glucolipotoxic conditions on cellular responses in pancreatic islets, including glucose and fat metabolism, Calcium mobilization, insulin secretion and insulin content. Results: Exposure of islets to chronic glucolipotoxic conditions decreased glucose stimulated insulin secretion in vitro. Reduced protein levels of Glut2/slc2a2, and decreased glucokinase and pyruvate carboxylase mRNA levels indicated a significant lowering in glucose sensing. Concomitantly, both fatty acid uptake and triglyceride accumulation increased significantly while fatty acid oxidation decreased. This general suppression in glucose metabolism correlated well with a decrease in mitochondrial number and activity, reduction in cellular ATP content and dampening of the TCA cycle. Further, we also observed a decrease in IP3 levels and lower Calcium mobilization in response to glucose. Importantly, chronic glucolipotoxic conditions in vitro decreased insulin gene expression, insulin content, insulin granule docking (to the plasma membrane) and insulin secretion. Conclusions: Our results present an integrated view of the effects of chronic glucolipotoxic conditions on known and novel signaling events, in vitro, that results in reduced glucose responsiveness and insulin secretion.
    Electronic ISSN: 1471-2121
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Published by BioMed Central
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  • 9
    Publication Date: 2013-04-09
    Description: Background; With an ever-growing ageing population, dementia is fast becoming the chronic disease of the 21stcentury. Elderly people affected with dementia progressively lose their autonomy as they encounterproblems in their Activities of Daily Living (ADLs). Hence, they need supervision and assistancefrom their family members or professional caregivers, which can often lead to underestimated psychologicaland financial stress for all parties. The use of Ambient Assistive Living (AAL) technologiesaims to empower people with dementia and relieve the burden of their caregivers.The aim of this paper is to present the approach we have adopted to develop and deploy a systemfor ambient assistive living in an operating nursing home, and evaluate its performance and usabilityin real conditions. Based on this approach, we emphasise on the importance of deployments in realworld settings as opposed to prototype testing in laboratories.Methods; We chose to conduct this work in close partnership with end-users (dementia patients) and specialistsin dementia care (professional caregivers). Our trial was conducted during a period of 14 monthswithin three rooms in a nursing home in Singapore, and with the participation of eight dementiapatients and two caregivers. A technical ambient assistive living solution, consisting of a set of sensorsand devices controlled by a software platform, was deployed in the collaborating nursing home. Thetrial was preceded by a pre-deployment period to organise several observation sessions with dementiapatients and focus group discussions with professional caregivers. A process of ground truth andsystem's log data gathering was also planned prior to the trial and a system performance evaluationwas realised during the deployment period with the help of caregivers. An ethical approval wasobtained prior to real life deployment of our solution.Results; Patients' observations and discussions allowed us to gather a set of requirements that a system forelders with mild-dementia should fulfil. In fact, our deployment has exposed more concrete requirementsand problems that need to be addressed, and which cannot be identified in laboratory testing.Issues that were neither forecasted during the design phase nor during the laboratory testing surfacedduring deployment, thus affecting the effectiveness of the proposed solution. Results of the systemperformance evaluation show the evolution of system precision and uptime over the deploymentphases, while data analysis demonstrates the ability to provide early detection of the degradation ofpatients' conditions. A qualitative feedback was collected from caregivers and doctors and a set oflessons learned emerged from this deployment experience.Conclusion; Lessons learned from this study were very useful for our research work and can serve as inspirationfor developers and providers of assistive living services. They confirmed the importance of realdeployment to evaluate assistive solutions especially with the involvement of professional caregivers.They also asserted the need for larger deployments. Larger deployments will allow to conduct surveyson assistive solutions social and health impact, even though they are time and manpower consumingduring their first phases.
    Electronic ISSN: 1472-6947
    Topics: Computer Science , Medicine
    Published by BioMed Central
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  • 10
    Publication Date: 2017-03-23
    Description: Patients’ perspective of diabetes and adherence to its prescribed medications is a significant predictor of glycemic control and overall management of the disease. However, there is a paucity of such informat...
    Electronic ISSN: 1756-0500
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Published by BioMed Central
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