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Duan Z.,Massachusetts General Hospital | Shen J.,Massachusetts General Hospital | Yang X.,Massachusetts General Hospital | Yang P.,Massachusetts General Hospital | And 9 more authors.
Journal of Orthopaedic Research | Year: 2014

Reliable prognostic biomarkers for chordoma have not yet been established. Recent studies revealed that expression of miRNA-1 (miR-1) is frequently downregulated in several cancer types including chordoma. The goal of this follow-up study is to investigate the expression of miR-1 as a prognostic biomarker and further confirm the functional role of miR-1 in chordoma cell growth and proliferation. We determined the relative expression levels of miR-1 and Met in chordoma tissue samples and correlated those to clinical variables. The results showed that miR-1 was downregulated in 93.7% of chordoma tissues and expression was inversely correlated with Met expression. miR-1 expression levels also correlated with clinical prognosis. To characterize and confirm the functional role of miR-1 in the growth and proliferation of chordoma cells, miR-1 precursors were stably transfected into chordoma cell lines UCH-1 and CH-22. Cell Proliferation Assay and MTT were used to evaluate cell growth and proliferation. Restoring expression of miR-1 precursor decreased cell growth and proliferation in UCH-1 and CH-22 cells. These results indicate that suppressed miR-1 expression in chordoma may in part be a driver for tumor growth, and that miR-1 has potential to serve as prognostic biomarker and therapeutic target for chordoma patients. © 2014 Orthopaedic Research Society. Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Huang M.-J.,Southern Medical University | Huang M.-J.,Academy of Orthopedics | Wang L.,Southern Medical University | Wang L.,Academy of Orthopedics | And 22 more authors.
Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases | Year: 2014

Background: An exogenous supplement of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) has been reported to prevent osteoarthritis (OA) through undefined mechanisms. Objective: This study investigated the effect of alterations in the composition of endogenous PUFAs on OA, and associations of PUFAs with mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) signalling, a critical autophagy pathway in fat-1 transgenic (TG) mice. Methods: fat-1 TG and wild-type mice were used to create an OA model by resecting the medial meniscus. The composition of the endogenous PUFAs in mouse tissues was analysed by gas chromatography, and the incidence of OA was evaluated by micro-computed tomography (micro-CT), scanning electron microscopy and histological methods. Additionally, primary chondrocytes were isolated and cultured. The effect of exogenous and endogenous PUFAs on mTORC1 activity and autophagy in chondrocytes was assessed. Results: The composition of endogenous PUFAs of TG mice was optimised both by increased n-3 PUFAs and decreased n-6 PUFAs, which significantly alleviated the articular cartilage destruction and osteophytosis in the OA model (p<0.01), decreased protein expression of matrix metalloproteinase-13 (MMP-13) and ADAMTS-5 (a disintegrin and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin motifs) in the articular cartilage (p<0.01) and reduced chondrocyte number and loss of cartilage extracellular matrix. Both exogenous and endogenous n-3 PUFAs downregulated mTORC1 activity and promoted autophagy in articular chondrocytes. Conversely, mTORC1 pathway activation suppressed autophagy in articular chondrocytes. Conclusions: Enhancement of the synthesis of endogenous n-3 PUFAs from n-6 PUFAs can delay the incidence of OA, probably through inhibition of mTORC1, promotion of autophagy and cell survival in cartilage chondrocytes. Future investigation into the role of the endogenous n-6/n-3 PUFAs composition in OA prevention and treatment is warranted.

Huang H.,University of California at Los Angeles | Lindgren A.,University of California at Los Angeles | Wu X.,Liu Hua Qiao Hospital | Liu N.-A.,Cedars Sinai Medical Center | Lin S.,University of California at Los Angeles
Cell Reports | Year: 2012

Transgenic zebrafish embryos expressing tissue-specific green fluorescent protein (GFP) can provide an unlimited supply of primary embryonic cells. Agents that promote the differentiation of these cells may be beneficial for therapeutics. We report a high-throughput approach for screening small molecules that regulate cell differentiation using lineage-specific GFP transgenic zebrafish embryonic cells. After validating several known regulators of the differentiation of endothelial and other cell types, we performed a screen for proangiogenic molecules using undifferentiated primary cells from flk1-GFP transgenic zebrafish embryos. Cells were grown in 384-well plates with 12,128 individual small molecules, and GFP expression was analyzed by means of an automated imaging system, which allowed us to screen thousands of compounds weekly. As a result, 23 molecules were confirmed to enhance angiogenesis, and 11 of them were validated to promote the proliferation of mammalian human umbilical vascular endothelial cells and induce Flk1+ cells from murine embryonic stem cells. We demonstrated the general applicability of this strategy by analyzing additional cell lineages using zebrafish expressing GFP in pancreatic, cardiac, and dopaminergic cells

Duan Z.,Massachusetts General Hospital | Zhang J.,Massachusetts General Hospital | Ye S.,Massachusetts General Hospital | Shen J.,Massachusetts General Hospital | And 8 more authors.
BMC Cancer | Year: 2014

Background: Reversing multidrug resistance (MDR) has been an important goal for clinical and investigational oncologists. In the last few decades, significant effort has been made to search for inhibitors to reverse MDR by targeting ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters (Pgp, MRP) directly, but these efforts have achieved little clinical success. Protein kinases play important roles in many aspects of tumor cell growth and survival. Combinations of kinase inhibitors and chemotherapeutics have been observed to overcome cancer drug resistance in certain circumstances.Methods: We screened a kinase specific inhibitor compound library in human osteosarcoma MDR cell lines to identify inhibitors that were capable of reversing chemoresistance to doxorubicin and paclitaxel.Results: We identified 18 small molecules that significantly increase chemotherapy drug-induced cell death in human osteosarcoma MDR cell lines U-2OSMR and KHOSR2. We identified A-770041 as one of the most effective MDR reversing agents when combined with doxorubicin or paclitaxel. A-770041 is a potent Src family kinase (Lck and Src) inhibitor. Western blot analysis revealed A-770041 inhibits both Src and Lck activation and expression. Inhibition of Src expression in U-2OSMR and KHOSR2 cell lines using lentiviral shRNA also resulted in increased doxorubicin and paclitaxel drug sensitivity. A-770041 increases the intracellular drug accumulation as demonstrated by calcein AM assay.Conclusions: These results indicate that small molecule inhibitor A-770041 may function to reverse ABCB1/Pgp-mediated chemotherapy drug resistance. Combination of Src family kinase inhibitor with regular chemotherapy drug could be clinically effective in MDR osteosarcoma. © 2014 Duan et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Zhong H.,Peking University | Wang D.,Peking University | Wang N.,Peking University | Rios Y.,University of California at Los Angeles | And 5 more authors.
Cell Research | Year: 2011

Blood vessels normally maintain stereotyped lumen diameters and their stable structures are crucial for vascular function. However, very little is known about the molecular mechanisms controlling the maintenance of vessel diameters and the integrity of endothelial cells. We investigated this issue in zebrafish embryos by a chemical genetics approach. Small molecule libraries were screened using live Tg(kdrl:GRCFP)zn1 transgenic embryos in which endothelial cells are specifically labeled with GFP. By analyzing the effects of compounds on the morphology and function of embryonic blood vessels after lumen formation, PP1, a putative Src kinase inhibitor, was identified as capable of specifically reducing vascular lumen size by interrupting endothelial-cell integrity. The inhibitory effect is not due to Src or general VEGF signaling inhibition because another Src inhibitor and Src morpholino as well as several VEGFR inhibitors failed to produce a similar phenotype. After profiling a panel of 22 representative mammalian kinases and surveying published data, we selected a few possible new candidates. Combinational analysis of these candidate kinase inhibitors established that PP1 induced endothelial collapse by inhibiting both the VEGFR2 and MAP kinase pathways. More importantly, combinatory use of two clinically approved drugs Dasatinib and Sunitinib produced the same phenotype. This is the first study to elucidate the pathways controlling maintenance of endothelial integrity using a chemical genetics approach, indicating that endothelial integrity is controlled by the combined action of the VEGFR2 and MAP kinase pathways. Our results also suggest the possible side effect of the combination of two anticancer drugs on the circulatory system. © 2011 IBCB, SIBS, CAS All rights reserved.

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