Science.gov

Sample records for postsegregational killer loci

  1. Isolation and characterization of 8 microsatellite loci for the "killer shrimp'', an invasive Ponto-Caspian amphipod Dikerogammarus villosus (Crustacea: Amphipoda).

    PubMed

    Rewicz, Tomasz; Wattier, Rémi A; Rigaud, Thierry; Bacela-Spychalska, Karolina; Grabowski, Michal

    2015-01-01

    Dikerogammarus villosus is a freshwater amphipod of the Ponto-Caspian origin recognized as one of the 100 worst alien species in Europe, having negative impact on biodiversity and functioning of the invaded aquatic ecosystems. The species has a wide ecophysiological tolerance and during the last 20 years it has rapidly spread throughout European inland waters. In consequence, it presents a major conservation management problem. We describe eight polymorphic microsatellite loci developed for D. villosus by combining a biotin-enrichment protocol and new generation 454GS-FLX Titanium pyrosequencing technology. When genotyped in 64 individuals from two locations, the loci exhibited a mean diversity of 4.87 alleles per locus (2-13). The mean observed and expected heterozygosities were, respectively, 0.439 (0.091-0.844) and 0.468 (0.089-0.843). Gametic disequilibrium was not detected for any pair of loci. The microsatellite markers will be a valuable tool in assessing the demographic processes associated with invasion of the killer shrimp from a genetic point of view. PMID:25234651

  2. Post-Slavery? Post-Segregation? Post-Racial? A History of the Impact of Slavery, Segregation, and Racism on the Education of African Americans

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Span, Christopher M.

    2015-01-01

    This chapter details how slavery, segregation, and racism impacted the educational experiences of African Americans from the colonial era to the present. It argues that America has yet to be a truly post-slavery and post-segregation society, let alone a post-racial society.

  3. Yeast killer systems.

    PubMed Central

    Magliani, W; Conti, S; Gerloni, M; Bertolotti, D; Polonelli, L

    1997-01-01

    The killer phenomenon in yeasts has been revealed to be a multicentric model for molecular biologists, virologists, phytopathologists, epidemiologists, industrial and medical microbiologists, mycologists, and pharmacologists. The surprisingly widespread occurrence of the killer phenomenon among taxonomically unrelated microorganisms, including prokaryotic and eukaryotic pathogens, has engendered a new interest in its biological significance as well as its theoretical and practical applications. The search for therapeutic opportunities by using yeast killer systems has conceptually opened new avenues for the prevention and control of life-threatening fungal diseases through the idiotypic network that is apparently exploited by the immune system in the course of natural infections. In this review, the biology, ecology, epidemiology, therapeutics, serology, and idiotypy of yeast killer systems are discussed. PMID:9227858

  4. The Violence of Collection: "Indian Killer"'s Archives

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dean, Janet

    2008-01-01

    At the close of Sherman Alexie's "Indian Killer," in a final chapter titled "Creation Story," a killer carries a backpack containing, among other things, "dozens of owl feathers, a scrapbook, and two bloody scalps in a plastic bag." Readers schooled in the psychopathologies of real and fictional serial killers will be familiar with the detail:…

  5. Grass and weed killer poisoning

    MedlinePlus

    Weedoff poisoning; Roundup poisoning ... Glyphosate is the poisonous ingredient in some weed killers. ... Glyphosate is in weed killers with these brand names: Roundup Bronco Glifonox Kleen-up Rodeo Weedoff Other ...

  6. Clemency Pogue: Fairy Killer

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Petty, J. T.

    2004-01-01

    This young adult author claims his most enjoyable task as a writer is "intellectual danger, getting into other people's trouble." He asks his readers not to trust him, and then, as evidence, tempts us with a look at a chapter from "Clemency Pogue: Fairy Killer."

  7. Biology Myth-Killers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lampert, Evan

    2014-01-01

    "Biology Myth-Killers" is an activity designed to identify and correct common misconceptions for high school and college introductory biology courses. Students identify common myths, which double as biology misconceptions, and use appropriate sources to share the "truth" about the myths. This learner-centered activity is a fun…

  8. Suppressing the killer instinct.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Kerry S

    2016-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells are innate lymphoid cells that have adopted activating and inhibitory signaling mechanisms enabling them to be tolerant of normal cells but to distinguish and eliminate tumor cells and virus-infected cells. In this issue of Science Signaling, Matalon et al show how inhibitory receptors disrupt NK cell activation by stimulating dephosphorylation of the adaptor protein LAT (linker of activated T cells) and phospholipase C-γ by the phosphatase SHP-1 [Src homology 2 (SH2) domain-containing protein tyrosine phosphatase 1], as well as ubiquitylation of LAT by Cbl family E3 ubiquitin ligases. PMID:27221707

  9. Arsenic: The Silent Killer

    SciTech Connect

    Foster, Andrea

    2006-02-28

    Andrea Foster uses x-rays to determine the forms of potentially toxic elements in environmentally-important matrices such as water, sediments, plants, and microorganisms. In this free public lecture, Foster will discuss her research on arsenic, which is called the silent killer because dissolved in water, it is colorless, odorless, and tasteless, yet consumption of relatively small doses of this element in its most toxic forms can cause rapid and violent death. Arsenic is a well-known poison, and has been used as such since ancient times. Less well known is the fact that much lower doses of the element, consumed over years, can lead to a variety of skin and internal cancers that can also be fatal. Currently, what has been called the largest mass poisoning in history is occurring in Bangladesh, where most people are by necessity drinking ground water that is contaminated with arsenic far in excess of the maximum amounts determined to be safe by the World Health Organization. This presentation will review the long and complicated history with arsenic, describe how x-rays have helped explain the high yet spatially variable arsenic concentrations in Bangladesh, discuss the ways in which land use in Bangladesh may be exacerbating the problem, and summarize the impact of this silent killer on drinking water systems worldwide.

  10. Natural killer cell deficiency

    PubMed Central

    Orange, Jordan S.

    2013-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells are part of the innate immune defense against infection and cancer, and are especially useful in combating certain viral pathogens. The utility of NK cells in human health has been underscored by a growing number of individuals who are deficient in NK cells and/or their functions. This can be in the context of a broader genetically-defined congenital immunodeficiency of which there are over forty presently known to impair NK cells. The abnormality of NK cells, however, in certain cases represents the majority immunological defect. In aggregate, these conditions are termed NK cell deficiency. Recent advances have added clarity to this diagnosis and identified defects in three different genes that can cause NK cell deficiency as well as some of the underlying biology. Appropriate consideration of these diagnoses and patients raises the potential for rational therapeutic options and further innovation. PMID:23993353

  11. Immunobiology of natural killer cells

    SciTech Connect

    Lotzova, E.; Herberman, R.B.

    1986-01-01

    This book combines research from many disciplines into a review of natural killer (NK) cell-mediated immunity in humans and experimental animal system. Topics for the volumes include: Volume I: Assays for NK Cell Cytotoxicity; Their Values and Pitfalls. Separation and Characterization of Phenotypically Distinct Subsets of NK Cells. Ultrastructure and Cytochemistry of the Human Large Granular Lymphocytes. Phylogeny and Ontogeny of NK Cells. Tissue and Organ distribution of NK Cells. Genetic Control of NK Cell Activity in Rodents. Phenotype, Functional Heterogeneity, and Lineage of Natural Killer Cells. Target Cell Structures, Recognition Sites, and the Mechanism of NK Cytotoxicity. Natural Killer Cytotoxic Factors (NKCF) Role in Cell-Mediated Cytotoxicity. Characteristics of Cultured NK Cells. Lectin-Dependent Killer Cells. MLC-Induced Cytotoxicity as a Model for the Development and Regulation of NK Cytotoxicity. LGL Lymphoproliferative Diseases in Man and Experimental Animals: The Characteristics of These Cells and Their Potential Experimental Uses. Index.

  12. Geographic patterns of genetic differentiation among killer whales in the northern North Pacific.

    PubMed

    Parsons, Kim M; Durban, John W; Burdin, Alexander M; Burkanov, Vladimir N; Pitman, Robert L; Barlow, Jay; Barrett-Lennard, Lance G; LeDuc, Richard G; Robertson, Kelly M; Matkin, Craig O; Wade, Paul R

    2013-01-01

    The difficulties associated with detecting population boundaries have long constrained the conservation and management of highly mobile, wide-ranging marine species, such as killer whales (Orcinus orca). In this study, we use data from 26 nuclear microsatellite loci and mitochondrial DNA sequences (988bp) to test a priori hypotheses about population subdivisions generated from a decade of killer whale surveys across the northern North Pacific. A total of 462 remote skin biopsies were collected from wild killer whales primarily between 2001 and 2010 from the northern Gulf of Alaska to the Sea of Okhotsk, representing both the piscivorous "resident" and the mammal-eating "transient" (or Bigg's) killer whales. Divergence of the 2 ecotypes was supported by both mtDNA and microsatellites. Geographic patterns of genetic differentiation were supported by significant regions of genetic discontinuity, providing evidence of population structuring within both ecotypes and corroborating direct observations of restricted movements of individual whales. In the Aleutian Islands (Alaska), subpopulations, or groups with significantly different mtDNA and microsatellite allele frequencies, were largely delimited by major oceanographic boundaries for resident killer whales. Although Amchitka Pass represented a major subdivision for transient killer whales between the central and western Aleutian Islands, several smaller subpopulations were evident throughout the eastern Aleutians and Bering Sea. Support for seasonally sympatric transient subpopulations around Unimak Island suggests isolating mechanisms other than geographic distance within this highly mobile top predator. PMID:23846984

  13. Natural killer cells: remembrances of things past.

    PubMed

    Raulet, David H

    2009-04-14

    Recent work has revealed that natural killer cells exhibit a form of memory, previously considered an exclusive property of adaptive immunity. While protective, natural killer cell memory is probably hazier and more fleeting than T cell memory. PMID:19368874

  14. Keiko, Killer Whale. [Lesson Plan].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Discovery Communications, Inc., Bethesda, MD.

    This lesson plan presents activities designed to help students understand that Keiko, the killer whale, lived for a long time in an aquarium and had to be taught to live independently; and that computer users can get updates on how Keiko is doing. The main activity of the lesson involves middle school students working in small groups to produce a…

  15. The DNA methylation profile of activated human natural killer cells.

    PubMed

    Wiencke, John K; Butler, Rondi; Hsuang, George; Eliot, Melissa; Kim, Stephanie; Sepulveda, Manuel A; Siegel, Derick; Houseman, E Andres; Kelsey, Karl T

    2016-05-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells are now recognized to exhibit characteristics akin to cells of the adaptive immune system. The generation of adaptive memory is linked to epigenetic reprogramming including alterations in DNA methylation. The study herein found reproducible genome wide DNA methylation changes associated with human NK cell activation. Activation led predominately to CpG hypomethylation (81% of significant loci). Bioinformatics analysis confirmed that non-coding and gene-associated differentially methylated sites (DMS) are enriched for immune related functions (i.e., immune cell activation). Known DNA methylation-regulated immune loci were also identified in activated NK cells (e.g., TNFA, LTA, IL13, CSF2). Twenty-one loci were designated high priority and further investigated as potential markers of NK activation. BHLHE40 was identified as a viable candidate for which a droplet digital PCR assay for demethylation was developed. The assay revealed high demethylation in activated NK cells and low demethylation in naïve NK, T- and B-cells. We conclude the NK cell methylome is plastic with potential for remodeling. The differentially methylated region signature of activated NKs revealed similarities with T cell activation, but also provided unique biomarker candidates of NK activation, which could be useful in epigenome-wide association studies to interrogate the role of NK subtypes in global methylation changes associated with exposures and/or disease states. PMID:26967308

  16. Phototoxic effects of lysosome-associated genetically encoded photosensitizer KillerRed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Serebrovskaya, Ekaterina O.; Ryumina, Alina P.; Boulina, Maria E.; Shirmanova, Marina V.; Zagaynova, Elena V.; Bogdanova, Ekaterina A.; Lukyanov, Sergey A.; Lukyanov, Konstantin A.

    2014-07-01

    KillerRed is a unique phototoxic red fluorescent protein that can be used to induce local oxidative stress by green-orange light illumination. Here we studied phototoxicity of KillerRed targeted to cytoplasmic surface of lysosomes via fusion with Rab7, a small GTPase that is known to be attached to membranes of late endosomes and lysosomes. It was found that lysosome-associated KillerRed ensures efficient light-induced cell death similar to previously reported mitochondria- and plasma membrane-localized KillerRed. Inhibitory analysis demonstrated that lysosomal cathepsins play an important role in the manifestation of KillerRed-Rab7 phototoxicity. Time-lapse monitoring of cell morphology, membrane integrity, and nuclei shape allowed us to conclude that KillerRed-Rab7-mediated cell death occurs via necrosis at high light intensity or via apoptosis at lower light intensity. Potentially, KillerRed-Rab7 can be used as an optogenetic tool to direct target cell populations to either apoptosis or necrosis.

  17. Turning Cancer Cells into Cancer Killers.

    PubMed

    2016-01-01

    Researchers have changed leukemia cells into natural killer cells by adding a specific antibody to bone marrow cells from patients with acute myeloblastic leukemia. The induced natural killer cells killed leukemia cells in culture. The antibody does not trigger the same conversion in bone marrow from healthy patients. PMID:26621762

  18. Structural Basis for Phototoxicity of the Genetically Encoded Photosensitizer KillerRed

    SciTech Connect

    Pletnev, Sergei; Gurskaya, Nadya G.; Pletneva, Nadya V.; Lukyanov, Konstantin A.; Chudakov, Dmitri M.; Martynov, Vladimir I.; Popov, Vladimir O.; Kovalchuk, Mikhail V.; Wlodawer, Alexander; Dauter, Zbigniew; Pletnev, Vladimir

    2009-11-23

    KillerRed is the only known fluorescent protein that demonstrates notable phototoxicity, exceeding that of the other green and red fluorescent proteins by at least 1,000-fold. KillerRed could serve as an instrument to inactivate target proteins or to kill cell populations in photodynamic therapy. However, the nature of KillerRed phototoxicity has remained unclear, impeding the development of more phototoxic variants. Here we present the results of a high resolution crystallographic study of KillerRed in the active fluorescent and in the photobleached non-fluorescent states. A unique and striking feature of the structure is a water-filled channel reaching the chromophore area from the end cap of the {beta}-barrel that is probably one of the key structural features responsible for phototoxicity. A study of the structure-function relationship of KillerRed, supported by structure-based, site-directed mutagenesis, has also revealed the key residues most likely responsible for the phototoxic effect. In particular, Glu68 and Ser119, located adjacent to the chromophore, have been assigned as the primary trigger of the reaction chain.

  19. Persistence in the shadow of killers

    PubMed Central

    Sinclair, Robert M.

    2014-01-01

    Killing is perhaps the most definite form of communication possible. Microbes such as yeasts and gut bacteria have been shown to exhibit killer phenotypes. The killer strains are able to kill other microbes occupying the same ecological niche, and do so with impunity. It would therefore be expected that, wherever a killer phenotype has arisen, all members of the population would soon be killers or dead. Surprisingly, (1) one can find both killer and sensitive strains in coexistence, both in the wild and in in vitro experiments, and (2) the absolute fitness cost of the killer phenotype often seems to be very small. We present an explicit model of such coexistence in a fragmented or discrete environment. A killer strain may kill all sensitive cells in one patch (one piece of rotting fruit, one cave or one human gut, for example), allowing sensitives to exist only in the absence of killer strains on the same patch. In our model, populations spread easily between patches, but in a stochastic manner: one can imagine spores borne by the wind over a field of untended apple trees, or enteric disease transmission in a region in which travel is effectively unrestricted. What we show is that coexistence is not only possible, but that it is possible even if the absolute fitness advantage of the sensitive strain over the killer strain is arbitrarily small. We do this by performing a specifically targeted mathematical analysis on our model, rather than via simulations. Our model does not assume large population densities, and may thus be useful in the context of understanding the ecology of extreme environments. PMID:25071753

  20. Persistence in the shadow of killers.

    PubMed

    Sinclair, Robert M

    2014-01-01

    Killing is perhaps the most definite form of communication possible. Microbes such as yeasts and gut bacteria have been shown to exhibit killer phenotypes. The killer strains are able to kill other microbes occupying the same ecological niche, and do so with impunity. It would therefore be expected that, wherever a killer phenotype has arisen, all members of the population would soon be killers or dead. Surprisingly, (1) one can find both killer and sensitive strains in coexistence, both in the wild and in in vitro experiments, and (2) the absolute fitness cost of the killer phenotype often seems to be very small. We present an explicit model of such coexistence in a fragmented or discrete environment. A killer strain may kill all sensitive cells in one patch (one piece of rotting fruit, one cave or one human gut, for example), allowing sensitives to exist only in the absence of killer strains on the same patch. In our model, populations spread easily between patches, but in a stochastic manner: one can imagine spores borne by the wind over a field of untended apple trees, or enteric disease transmission in a region in which travel is effectively unrestricted. What we show is that coexistence is not only possible, but that it is possible even if the absolute fitness advantage of the sensitive strain over the killer strain is arbitrarily small. We do this by performing a specifically targeted mathematical analysis on our model, rather than via simulations. Our model does not assume large population densities, and may thus be useful in the context of understanding the ecology of extreme environments. PMID:25071753

  1. Deficient natural killer cell function in preeclampsia

    SciTech Connect

    Alanen, A.; Lassila, O.

    1982-11-01

    Natural killer cell activity of peripheral blood lymphocytes was measured against K-562 target cells with a 4-hour /sup 51/Cr release assay in 15 primigravid women with preeclamptic symptoms. Nineteen primigravid women with an uncomplicated pregnancy and 18 nonpregnant women served as controls. The natural killer cell activity of preeclamptic women was observed to be significantly lower than that of both control groups. Natural killer cells in preeclamptic women responded normally to augmentation caused by interferon. These findings give further evidence for the participation of the maternal immune system in this pregnancy disorder.

  2. Natural killer cell activity during measles.

    PubMed Central

    Griffin, D E; Ward, B J; Jauregui, E; Johnson, R T; Vaisberg, A

    1990-01-01

    Natural killer cells are postulated to play an important role in host anti-viral defences. We measured natural killer cell activity in 30 individuals with acute measles (73 +/- 21 lytic units (LU)/10(7) cells) and 16 individuals with other infectious diseases (149 +/- 95 LU) and found it reduced compared with values for adults (375 +/- 70 LU; P less than 0.001) or children (300 +/- 73 LU, P less than 0.01) without infection. Reduced natural killer cell activity was found in measles patients with (84 +/- 30 LU) and without (55 +/- 18 LU) complications and was present for at least 3 weeks after the onset of the rash. Activity was increased by in vitro exposure of cells to interleukin-2. Depressed natural killer cell activity parallels in time the suppression of other parameters of cell-mediated immunity that occurs during measles. PMID:1696863

  3. Killer whales and whaling: the scavenging hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Whitehead, Hal; Reeves, Randall

    2005-01-01

    Killer whales (Orcinus orca) frequently scavenged from the carcasses produced by whalers. This practice became especially prominent with large-scale mechanical whaling in the twentieth century, which provided temporally and spatially clustered floating carcasses associated with loud acoustic signals. The carcasses were often of species of large whale preferred by killer whales but that normally sink beyond their diving range. In the middle years of the twentieth century floating whaled carcasses were much more abundant than those resulting from natural mortality of whales, and we propose that scavenging killer whales multiplied through diet shifts and reproduction. During the 1970s the numbers of available carcasses fell dramatically with the cessation of most whaling (in contrast to a reasonably stable abundance of living whales), and the scavenging killer whales needed an alternative source of nutrition. Diet shifts may have triggered declines in other prey species, potentially affecting ecosystems, as well as increasing direct predation on living whales. PMID:17148221

  4. A Novel Saccharomyces cerevisiae Killer Strain Secreting the X Factor Related to Killer Activity and Inhibition of S. cerevisiae K1, K2 and K28 Killer Toxins.

    PubMed

    Melvydas, Vytautas; Bružauskaitė, Ieva; Gedminienė, Genovaitė; Šiekštelė, Rimantas

    2016-09-01

    It was determined that Kx strains secrete an X factor which can inhibit all known Saccharomyces cerevisiae killer toxins (K1, K2, K28) and some toxins of other yeast species-the phenomenon not yet described in the scientific literature. It was shown that Kx type yeast strains posess a killer phenotype producing small but clear lysis zones not only on the sensitive strain α'1 but also on the lawn of S. cerevisiae K1, K2 and K28 type killer strains at temperatures between 20 and 30 °C. The pH at which killer/antikiller effect of Kx strain reaches its maximum is about 5.0-5.2. The Kx yeast were identified as to belong to S. cerevisiae species. Another newly identified S. cerevisiae killer strain N1 has killer activity but shows no antikilller properties against standard K1, K2 and K28 killer toxins. The genetic basis for Kx killer/antikiller phenotype was associated with the presence of M-dsRNA which is bigger than M-dsRNA of standard S. cerevisiae K1, K2, K28 type killer strains. Killer and antikiller features should be encoded by dsRNA. The phenomenon of antikiller (inhibition) properties was observed against some killer toxins of other yeast species. The molecular weight of newly identified killer toxins which produces Kx type strains might be about 45 kDa. PMID:27407298

  5. Nuclear and mitochondrial patterns of population structure in North Pacific false killer whales (Pseudorca crassidens).

    PubMed

    Martien, Karen K; Chivers, Susan J; Baird, Robin W; Archer, Frederick I; Gorgone, Antoinette M; Hancock-Hanser, Brittany L; Mattila, David; McSweeney, Daniel J; Oleson, Erin M; Palmer, Carol; Pease, Victoria L; Robertson, Kelly M; Schorr, Gregory S; Schultz, Mark B; Webster, Daniel L; Taylor, Barbara L

    2014-01-01

    False killer whales (Pseudorca crassidens) are large delphinids typically found in deep water far offshore. However, in the Hawaiian Archipelago, there are 2 resident island-associated populations of false killer whales, one in the waters around the main Hawaiian Islands (MHI) and one in the waters around the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands (NWHI). We use mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) control region sequences and genotypes from 16 nuclear DNA (nucDNA) microsatellite loci from 206 individuals to examine levels of differentiation among the 2 island-associated populations and offshore animals from the central and eastern North Pacific. Both mtDNA and nucDNA exhibit highly significant differentiation between populations, confirming limited gene flow in both sexes. The mtDNA haplotypes exhibit a strong pattern of phylogeographic concordance, with island-associated populations sharing 3 closely related haplotypes not found elsewhere in the Pacific. However, nucDNA data suggest that NWHI animals are at least as differentiated from MHI animals as they are from offshore animals. The patterns of differentiation revealed by the 2 marker types suggest that the island-associated false killer whale populations likely share a common colonization history, but have limited contemporary gene flow. PMID:24831238

  6. Cancer on Course to Become Top Killer of Americans

    MedlinePlus

    ... 160601.html Cancer on Course to Become Top Killer of Americans Report shows it will probably eclipse ... in on heart disease as America's number one killer, a new government study shows. Heart disease has ...

  7. Population genomics of the killer whale indicates ecotype evolution in sympatry involving both selection and drift.

    PubMed

    Moura, Andre E; Kenny, John G; Chaudhuri, Roy; Hughes, Margaret A; J Welch, Andreanna; Reisinger, Ryan R; de Bruyn, P J Nico; Dahlheim, Marilyn E; Hall, Neil; Hoelzel, A Rus

    2014-11-01

    The evolution of diversity in the marine ecosystem is poorly understood, given the relatively high potential for connectivity, especially for highly mobile species such as whales and dolphins. The killer whale (Orcinus orca) has a worldwide distribution, and individual social groups travel over a wide geographic range. Even so, regional populations have been shown to be genetically differentiated, including among different foraging specialists (ecotypes) in sympatry. Given the strong matrifocal social structure of this species together with strong resource specializations, understanding the process of differentiation will require an understanding of the relative importance of both genetic drift and local adaptation. Here we provide a high-resolution analysis based on nuclear single-nucleotide polymorphic markers and inference about differentiation at both neutral loci and those potentially under selection. We find that all population comparisons, within or among foraging ecotypes, show significant differentiation, including populations in parapatry and sympatry. Loci putatively under selection show a different pattern of structure compared to neutral loci and are associated with gene ontology terms reflecting physiologically relevant functions (e.g. related to digestion). The pattern of differentiation for one ecotype in the North Pacific suggests local adaptation and shows some fixed differences among sympatric ecotypes. We suggest that differential habitat use and resource specializations have promoted sufficient isolation to allow differential evolution at neutral and functional loci, but that the process is recent and dependent on both selection and drift. PMID:25244680

  8. Population genomics of the killer whale indicates ecotype evolution in sympatry involving both selection and drift

    PubMed Central

    Moura, Andre E; Kenny, John G; Chaudhuri, Roy; Hughes, Margaret A; J Welch, Andreanna; Reisinger, Ryan R; de Bruyn, P J Nico; Dahlheim, Marilyn E; Hall, Neil; Hoelzel, A Rus

    2014-01-01

    The evolution of diversity in the marine ecosystem is poorly understood, given the relatively high potential for connectivity, especially for highly mobile species such as whales and dolphins. The killer whale (Orcinus orca) has a worldwide distribution, and individual social groups travel over a wide geographic range. Even so, regional populations have been shown to be genetically differentiated, including among different foraging specialists (ecotypes) in sympatry. Given the strong matrifocal social structure of this species together with strong resource specializations, understanding the process of differentiation will require an understanding of the relative importance of both genetic drift and local adaptation. Here we provide a high-resolution analysis based on nuclear single-nucleotide polymorphic markers and inference about differentiation at both neutral loci and those potentially under selection. We find that all population comparisons, within or among foraging ecotypes, show significant differentiation, including populations in parapatry and sympatry. Loci putatively under selection show a different pattern of structure compared to neutral loci and are associated with gene ontology terms reflecting physiologically relevant functions (e.g. related to digestion). The pattern of differentiation for one ecotype in the North Pacific suggests local adaptation and shows some fixed differences among sympatric ecotypes. We suggest that differential habitat use and resource specializations have promoted sufficient isolation to allow differential evolution at neutral and functional loci, but that the process is recent and dependent on both selection and drift. PMID:25244680

  9. Killer systems of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    SciTech Connect

    Nesterova, G.F.

    1989-01-01

    The killer systems of Saccharomyces cerevisiae are an unusual class of cytoplasmic symbionts of primitive eukaryotes. The genetic material of these symbionts is double-stranded RNA. They are characterized by the linearity of the genome, its fragmentation into a major and a minor fraction, which replicate separately, and their ability to control the synthesis of secretory mycocin proteins possessing a toxic action on closely related strains. The secretion of mycocins at the same time ensures acquiring of resistance to them. Strains containing killer symbionts are toxigenic and resistant to the action of their own toxin, but strains that are free of killer double-stranded RNAs are sensitive to the action of mycocins. The killer systems of S. cerevisiae have retained features relating them to viruses and are apparently the result of evolution of infectious viruses. The occurrences of such systems among monocellular eukaryotic organisms is an example of complication of the genome by means of its assembly from virus-like components. We discuss the unusual features of replication and the expression of killer systems and their utilization in the construction of vector molecules.

  10. Remote Symbolic Computation of Loci

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Abanades, Miguel A.; Escribano, Jesus; Botana, Francisco

    2010-01-01

    This article presents a web-based tool designed to compute certified equations and graphs of geometric loci specified using standard Dynamic Geometry Systems (DGS). Complementing the graphing abilities of the considered DGS, the equations of the loci produced by the application are remotely computed using symbolic algebraic techniques from the…

  11. Stochastic modeling of a serial killer.

    PubMed

    Simkin, M V; Roychowdhury, V P

    2014-08-21

    We analyze the time pattern of the activity of a serial killer, who during 12 years had murdered 53 people. The plot of the cumulative number of murders as a function of time is of "Devil's staircase" type. The distribution of the intervals between murders (step length) follows a power law with the exponent of 1.4. We propose a model according to which the serial killer commits murders when neuronal excitation in his brain exceeds certain threshold. We model this neural activity as a branching process, which in turn is approximated by a random walk. As the distribution of the random walk return times is a power law with the exponent 1.5, the distribution of the inter-murder intervals is thus explained. We illustrate analytical results by numerical simulation. Time pattern activity data from two other serial killers further substantiate our analysis. PMID:24721476

  12. Stochastic modeling of a serial killer

    PubMed Central

    Simkin, M.V.; Roychowdhury, V.P.

    2014-01-01

    We analyze the time pattern of the activity of a serial killer, who during twelve years had murdered 53 people. The plot of the cumulative number of murders as a function of time is of “Devil’s staircase” type. The distribution of the intervals between murders (step length) follows a power law with the exponent of 1.4. We propose a model according to which the serial killer commits murders when neuronal excitation in his brain exceeds certain threshold. We model this neural activity as a branching process, which in turn is approximated by a random walk. As the distribution of the random walk return times is a power law with the exponent 1.5, the distribution of the inter-murder intervals is thus explained. We illustrate analytical results by numerical simulation. Time pattern activity data from two other serial killers further substantiate our analysis. PMID:24721476

  13. Genetic differentiation among North Atlantic killer whale populations.

    PubMed

    Foote, Andrew D; Vilstrup, Julia T; De Stephanis, Renaud; Verborgh, Philippe; Abel Nielsen, Sandra C; Deaville, Robert; Kleivane, Lars; Martín, Vidal; Miller, Patrick J O; Oien, Nils; Pérez-Gil, Monica; Rasmussen, Morten; Reid, Robert J; Robertson, Kelly M; Rogan, Emer; Similä, Tiu; Tejedor, Maria L; Vester, Heike; Víkingsson, Gísli A; Willerslev, Eske; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Piertney, Stuart B

    2011-02-01

    Population genetic structure of North Atlantic killer whale samples was resolved from differences in allele frequencies of 17 microsatellite loci, mtDNA control region haplotype frequencies and for a subset of samples, using complete mitogenome sequences. Three significantly differentiated populations were identified. Differentiation based on microsatellite allele frequencies was greater between the two allopatric populations than between the two pairs of partially sympatric populations. Spatial clustering of individuals within each of these populations overlaps with the distribution of particular prey resources: herring, mackerel and tuna, which each population has been seen predating. Phylogenetic analyses using complete mitogenomes suggested two populations could have resulted from single founding events and subsequent matrilineal expansion. The third population, which was sampled at lower latitudes and lower density, consisted of maternal lineages from three highly divergent clades. Pairwise population differentiation was greater for estimates based on mtDNA control region haplotype frequencies than for estimates based on microsatellite allele frequencies, and there were no mitogenome haplotypes shared among populations. This suggests low or no female migration and that gene flow was primarily male mediated when populations spatially and temporally overlap. These results demonstrate that genetic differentiation can arise through resource specialization in the absence of physical barriers to gene flow. PMID:21241391

  14. Killer whales (Orcinus orca) produce ultrasonic whistles.

    PubMed

    Samarra, Filipa I P; Deecke, Volker B; Vinding, Katja; Rasmussen, Marianne H; Swift, René J; Miller, Patrick J O

    2010-11-01

    This study reports that killer whales, the largest dolphin, produce whistles with the highest fundamental frequencies ever reported in a delphinid. Using wide-band acoustic sampling from both animal-attached (Dtag) and remotely deployed hydrophone arrays, ultrasonic whistles were detected in three Northeast Atlantic populations but not in two Northeast Pacific populations. These results are inconsistent with analyses suggesting a correlation of maximum frequency of whistles with body size in delphinids, indicate substantial intraspecific variation in whistle production in killer whales, and highlight the importance of appropriate acoustic sampling techniques when conducting comparative analyses of sound repertoires. PMID:21110527

  15. Using multiplex PCR amplification and typing kits for the analysis of DNA evidence in a serial killer case.

    PubMed

    Hochmeister, M N; Budowle, B; Eisenberg, A; Borer, U V; Dirnhofer, R

    1996-01-01

    Analysis of DNA evidence in a serial killer case was performed using the AmpliType HLA-DQ alpha-, AmpliType PM-, and the GenePrint STR Multiplex System PCR Amplification Kits. In addition, a sex typing procedure using the X-Y homologous gene amelogenin was carried out. DNA profiles from a single hair with attached sheath material, recovered from underneath the seat cover of the suspect's car seat were compared with DNA profiles derived from reference head hairs from a homicide victim. From the evidentiary sample only 9 ng of human DNA could be recovered. In a sample, where the quantity of DNA becomes a critical issue a powerful route is the simultaneous amplification of several loci (multiplex PCR). This is the first report where commercially available multiplex PCR amplification and typing kits have been introduced for the analysis of DNA evidence in a serial killer case and the analysis has been admitted in court. PMID:8934718

  16. Killer toxin from a novel killer yeast Pichia kudriavzevii RY55 with idiosyncratic antibacterial activity.

    PubMed

    Bajaj, Bijender Kumar; Raina, Sandeepu; Singh, Satbir

    2013-08-01

    The killer phenomenon of yeast may have technological implications in many areas like beverage fermentation, food technology, biological control in agriculture, and in medicine. In the present study the killer phenomenon in Pichia kudriavzevii (P. kudriavzevii RY55) is being reported for the first time. The P. kudriavzevii RY55 toxin exhibited excellent antibacterial activity against several pathogens of human health significance such as Escherichia coli, Enterococcus faecalis, Klebsiella sp., Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Pseudomonas alcaligenes. Killer toxin was purified to homogeneity by using ammonium sulphate precipitation and ion exchange chromatography and characterized for few properties. P. kudriavzevii RY55 killer toxin may be of vast significance in the development of novel antimicrobial chemotherapeutic agents, new bio-based safer candidates for food preservation and biocontrol, and starter cultures for fermentation industries. PMID:22961241

  17. Chasing Killer Statements From The Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simon, Marianne

    1975-01-01

    This teacher discusses techniques she uses to rid the classroom of "killer statements", which are negative statements that express some kind of anger or distress and are unthinking outgrowths of the desire to get back at the world when feeling needy or deprived.

  18. The KP4 killer protein gene family

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Killer protein 4 (KP4) is a well studied toxin secreted by the maize smut fungus Ustilago maydis that kills sensitive Ustilago strains as well as inhibits Fusarium and plant root growth. This small, cysteine rich protein is encoded by a virus that depends on host survival for replication. KP4 functi...

  19. The School: A Killer of Giftedness?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van der Walt, J. L.

    Criticisms of the school as a killer of giftedness in children are cited. After defining giftedness and talent, the problem of educating the gifted child is raised, and opinions of "new left" educational theorists are presented. Accusations against the school, based on its failure to meet the individual needs and the mental or cognitive…

  20. Young Killers: The Challenge of Juvenile Homicide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heide, Kathleen M.

    This book assembles and synthesizes some of the latest available information, research findings, and informed opinions regarding the parameters of homicide by youths and concerning the nature of young killers themselves. It provides a framework for understanding youths who kill, for moving forward with treatment, and for reducing violence in…

  1. Are natural killer cells superior CAR drivers?

    PubMed Central

    Klingemann, Hans

    2014-01-01

    T lymphocytes engineered to express a chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) are being celebrated as a major breakthrough of anticancer immunotherapy. Natural killer cells have not received similar attention as CAR effectors, although the use of these relatively short-lived cytotoxic cells is associated with several advantages. PMID:25340009

  2. Travel from a supercomputer to killer micros

    SciTech Connect

    Werner, N.E.

    1991-03-01

    I describe my effort to convert a Fortran application that runs on a parallel supercomputer (Cray Y/MP) to run on a set of BBN TC2000 killer micros. I used both shared memory parallel processing options available at MPCI for the BBN TC2000, the Parallel Fortran Preprocessor (PFP) and the Uniform System extended Fortran compiler (US). I describe how I used the BBN Xtra programming tools for analysis and debugging during this conversion process. My ultimate goal for this hands on experiment was to gain insight into the type of tools that might be helpful for porting existing programs from a supercomputer environment to a killer micro environment. 5 refs., 9 figs.

  3. The Human Natural Killer Cell Immune Synapse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Daniel M.; Chiu, Isaac; Fassett, Marlys; Cohen, George B.; Mandelboim, Ofer; Strominger, Jack L.

    1999-12-01

    Inhibitory killer Ig-like receptors (KIR) at the surface of natural killer (NK) cells induced clustering of HLA-C at the contacting surface of target cells. In this manner, inhibitory immune synapses were formed as human NK cells surveyed target cells. At target/NK cell synapses, HLA-C/KIR distributed into rings around central patches of intercellular adhesion molecule-1/lymphocyte function-associated antigen-1, the opposite orientation to mature murine T cell-activating synapses. This organization of protein was stable for at least 20 min. Cells could support multiple synapses simultaneously, and clusters of HLA-C moved as NK cells crawled over target cells. Clustering required a divalent metal cation, explaining how metal chelators inhibit KIR function. Surprisingly, however, formation of inhibitory synapses was unaffected by ATP depletion and the cytoskeletal inhibitors, colchicine and cytochalsins B and D. Clearly, supramolecular organization within plasma membranes is critical for NK cell immunosurveillance.

  4. Representation of the serial killer on the Italian Internet.

    PubMed

    Villano, P; Bastianoni, P; Melotti, G

    2001-10-01

    The representation of serial killers was examined from the analysis of 317 Web pages in the Italian language to study how the psychological profiles of serial killers are described on the Italian Internet. The correspondence analysis of the content of these Web pages shows that in Italy the serial killer is associated with words such as "monster" and "horror," which suggest and imply psychological perversion and aberrant acts. These traits are peculiar for the Italian scenario. PMID:11783573

  5. Natural killer cell regulation - beyond the receptors

    PubMed Central

    Urlaub, Doris; Fasbender, Frank; Claus, Maren

    2014-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells are lymphocytes that are important for early and effective immune responses against infections and cancer. In the last 40 years, many receptors, their corresponding ligands and signaling pathways that regulate NK cell functions have been identified. However, we now know that additional processes, such as NK cell education, differentiation and also the formation of NK cell memory, have a great impact on the reactivity of these cells. Here, we summarize the current knowledge about these modulatory processes. PMID:25374665

  6. Fighting back against male-killers.

    PubMed

    Jaenike, John

    2007-04-01

    Male-killing endosymbionts create a genetic black hole into which host nuclear genes vanish. In a recent paper, Hornett et al. transferred male-killing Wolbachia between different strains of the butterfly Hypolimnas bolina through hybridization and backcrossing. Their results provide unambiguous evidence of genetic variation for resistance to male-killers. A possible consequence of such variation is that male-killing might appear and disappear quickly on an evolutionary timescale. PMID:17276538

  7. Is killer whale dialect evolution random?

    PubMed

    Filatova, Olga A; Burdin, Alexandr M; Hoyt, Erich

    2013-10-01

    The killer whale is among the few species in which cultural change accumulates over many generations, leading to cumulative cultural evolution. Killer whales have group-specific vocal repertoires which are thought to be learned rather than being genetically coded. It is supposed that divergence between vocal repertoires of sister groups increases gradually over time due to random learning mistakes and innovations. In this case, the similarity of calls across groups must be correlated with pod relatedness and, consequently, with each other. In this study we tested this prediction by comparing the patterns of call similarity between matrilines of resident killer whales from Eastern Kamchatka. We calculated the similarity of seven components from three call types across 14 matrilines. In contrast to the theoretical predictions, matrilines formed different clusters on the dendrograms made by different calls and even by different components of the same call. We suggest three possible explanations for this phenomenon. First, the lack of agreement between similarity patterns of different components may be the result of constraints in the call structure. Second, it is possible that call components change in time with different speed and/or in different directions. Third, horizontal cultural transmission of call features may occur between matrilines. PMID:23796775

  8. The structure of stereotyped calls reflects kinship and social affiliation in resident killer whales (Orcinus orca).

    PubMed

    Deecke, Volker B; Barrett-Lennard, Lance G; Spong, Paul; Ford, John K B

    2010-05-01

    A few species of mammals produce group-specific vocalisations that are passed on by learning, but the function of learned vocal variation remains poorly understood. Resident killer whales live in stable matrilineal groups with repertoires of seven to 17 stereotyped call types. Some types are shared among matrilines, but their structure typically shows matriline-specific differences. Our objective was to analyse calls of nine killer whale matrilines in British Columbia to test whether call similarity primarily reflects social or genetic relationships. Recordings were made in 1985-1995 in the presence of focal matrilines that were either alone or with groups with non-overlapping repertoires. We used neural network discrimination performance to measure the similarity of call types produced by different matrilines and determined matriline association rates from 757 encounters with one or more focal matrilines. Relatedness was measured by comparing variation at 11 microsatellite loci for the oldest female in each group. Call similarity was positively correlated with association rates for two of the three call types analysed. Similarity of the N4 call type was also correlated with matriarch relatedness. No relationship between relatedness and association frequency was detected. These results show that call structure reflects relatedness and social affiliation, but not because related groups spend more time together. Instead, call structure appears to play a role in kin recognition and shapes the association behaviour of killer whale groups. Our results therefore support the hypothesis that increasing social complexity plays a role in the evolution of learned vocalisations in some mammalian species. PMID:20213302

  9. The structure of stereotyped calls reflects kinship and social affiliation in resident killer whales ( Orcinus orca)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deecke, Volker B.; Barrett-Lennard, Lance G.; Spong, Paul; Ford, John K. B.

    2010-05-01

    A few species of mammals produce group-specific vocalisations that are passed on by learning, but the function of learned vocal variation remains poorly understood. Resident killer whales live in stable matrilineal groups with repertoires of seven to 17 stereotyped call types. Some types are shared among matrilines, but their structure typically shows matriline-specific differences. Our objective was to analyse calls of nine killer whale matrilines in British Columbia to test whether call similarity primarily reflects social or genetic relationships. Recordings were made in 1985-1995 in the presence of focal matrilines that were either alone or with groups with non-overlapping repertoires. We used neural network discrimination performance to measure the similarity of call types produced by different matrilines and determined matriline association rates from 757 encounters with one or more focal matrilines. Relatedness was measured by comparing variation at 11 microsatellite loci for the oldest female in each group. Call similarity was positively correlated with association rates for two of the three call types analysed. Similarity of the N4 call type was also correlated with matriarch relatedness. No relationship between relatedness and association frequency was detected. These results show that call structure reflects relatedness and social affiliation, but not because related groups spend more time together. Instead, call structure appears to play a role in kin recognition and shapes the association behaviour of killer whale groups. Our results therefore support the hypothesis that increasing social complexity plays a role in the evolution of learned vocalisations in some mammalian species.

  10. Metabolic imaging of the tumor treated by KillerRed fluorescent protein-based photodynamic therapy in mice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sha, Shuang; Qin, Lingsong; Wang, Anle; Liu, Zheng; Yang, Fei; Jin, Honglin; Zhang, Zhihong

    2014-02-01

    KillerRed is a unique red fluorescent protein exhibiting excellent phototoxic properties. It has the ability to produce reactive oxygen species (ROS), for killing tumor cells in vitro upon laser irradiation and has the potential to act as a photosensitizer in the application of tumor therapy. Here, we investigated the effects of KillerRed-based photodynamic therapy (PDT) on tumor growth in vivo and examined the subsequent tumor metabolic states including the changes of pyridine nucleotide (PN) and flavoprotein (Fp), two important metabolic coenzymes of tumor cells. Results showed that the tumor was scabbed in response to 561 nm laser irradiation at 80 mV for 3 min, and the tumor growth had been significantly inhibited by KillerRed-based PDT treatment compared to control groups. More importantly, a home-made cryo-imaging redox scanner was used to measure intrinsic fluorescence and exogenous KillerRed fluorescence signals in tumors. The flavoprotein was remarkable elevated and the PN was seldom increased with concomitant photobleaching of KillerRed fluorescence after irradiation, suggesting that flavoprotein and PN were oxidized in the course of KillerRed-based PDT.

  11. The virally encoded killer proteins from Ustilago maydis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Several strains of Ustilago maydis, a causal agent of corn smut disease, exhibit a 'killer' phenotype that is due to persistent infection by double-stranded RNA Totiviruses. These viruses produce potent killer proteins that are secreted by the host. This is a rare example of virus/host symbiosis in ...

  12. Natural Killer Cell Reduction and Uteroplacental Vasculopathy.

    PubMed

    Golic, Michaela; Haase, Nadine; Herse, Florian; Wehner, Anika; Vercruysse, Lisbeth; Pijnenborg, Robert; Balogh, Andras; Saether, Per Christian; Dissen, Erik; Luft, Friedrich C; Przybyl, Lukasz; Park, Joon-Keun; Alnaes-Katjavivi, Patji; Staff, Anne Cathrine; Verlohren, Stefan; Henrich, Wolfgang; Muller, Dominik N; Dechend, Ralf

    2016-10-01

    Uterine natural killer cells are important for uteroplacental development and pregnancy maintenance. Their role in pregnancy disorders, such as preeclampsia, is unknown. We reduced the number of natural killer cells by administering rabbit anti-asialo GM1 antiserum in an established rat preeclamptic model (female human angiotensinogen×male human renin) and evaluated the effects at the end of pregnancy (day 21), compared with preeclamptic control rats receiving normal rabbit serum. In 100% of the antiserum-treated, preeclamptic rats (7/7), we observed highly degenerated vessel cross sections in the mesometrial triangle at the end of pregnancy. This maternal uterine vasculopathy was characterized by a total absence of nucleated/living cells in the vessel wall and perivascularly and prominent presence of fibrosis. Furthermore, there were no endovascular trophoblast cells within the vessel lumen. In the control, normal rabbit serum-treated, preeclamptic rats, only 20% (1/5) of the animals displayed such vasculopathy. We confirmed the results in healthy pregnant wild-type rats: after anti-asialo GM1 treatment, 67% of maternal rats displayed vasculopathy at the end of pregnancy compared with 0% in rabbit serum-treated control rats. This vasculopathy was associated with a significantly lower fetal weight in wild-type rats and deterioration of fetal brain/liver weight ratio in preeclamptic rats. Anti-asialo GM1 application had no influence on maternal hypertension and albuminuria during pregnancy. Our results show a new role of natural killer cells during hypertensive pregnancy in maintaining vascular integrity. In normotensive pregnancy, this integrity seems important for fetal growth. PMID:27550919

  13. Viral Evasion of Natural Killer Cell Activation

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Yi; Li, Xiaojuan; Kuang, Ersheng

    2016-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells play a key role in antiviral innate defenses because of their abilities to kill infected cells and secrete regulatory cytokines. Additionally, NK cells exhibit adaptive memory-like antigen-specific responses, which represent a novel antiviral NK cell defense mechanism. Viruses have evolved various strategies to evade the recognition and destruction by NK cells through the downregulation of the NK cell activating receptors. Here, we review the recent findings on viral evasion of NK cells via the impairment of NK cell-activating receptors and ligands, which provide new insights on the relationship between NK cells and viral actions during persistent viral infections. PMID:27077876

  14. From Pichia anomala killer toxin through killer antibodies to killer peptides for a comprehensive anti-infective strategy.

    PubMed

    Polonelli, Luciano; Magliani, Walter; Ciociola, Tecla; Giovati, Laura; Conti, Stefania

    2011-01-01

    "Antibiobodies", antibodies (Abs) with antibiotic activity, internal image of a Pichia anomala killer toxin (PaKT) characterized by microbicidal activity against microorganisms expressing β-glucans cell-wall receptors (PaKTRs), were produced by idiotypic vaccination with a PaKT-neutralizing monoclonal Ab (PaKT-like Abs) or induced by a protein-conjugated β-glucan. Human natural PaKT-like Abs (PaKTAbs) were found in the vaginal fluid of women infected with KT-sensitive microorganisms. Monoclonal and recombinant PaKT-like Abs, and PaKTAbs proved to be protective against experimental candidiasis, cryptococcosis and aspergillosis. A killer decapeptide (KP), synthesized from the sequence of a recombinant PaKT-like Ab or produced in transgenic plants, showed a microbicidal activity in vitro, neutralized by β-glucans, a therapeutic effect in vivo, against experimental mucosal and systemic mycoses, and a prophylactic role in planta, against phytopathogenic microorganisms, respectively. KP showed fungicidal properties against all the defective mutants of a Saccharomyces cerevisiae library, inclusive of strains recognized to be resistant to conventional antifungal drugs. KP inhibited in vitro, ex vivo and/or in vivo HIV-1 and Influenza A virus replication, owing to down-regulation of CCR5 co-receptors, physical block of the gp120-receptor interaction and reduction in the synthesis of glycoproteins, HA and M1 in particular. KP modulated the expression of costimulatory and MHC molecules on murine dendritic cells, improving their capacity to induce lymphocyte proliferation. KP, proven to be devoid of cytotoxicity on human cells, showed self-assembly-releasing hydrogel-like properties, catalyzed by β 1,3 glucan. PaKT's biotechnological derivatives may represent the prototypes of novel antifungal vaccines and anti-infective drugs characterized by different mechanisms of action. PMID:20714805

  15. Positive selection on the killer whale mitogenome.

    PubMed

    Foote, Andrew D; Morin, Phillip A; Durban, John W; Pitman, Robert L; Wade, Paul; Willerslev, Eske; Gilbert, M Thomas P; da Fonseca, Rute R

    2011-02-23

    Mitochondria produce up to 95 per cent of the eukaryotic cell's energy. The coding genes of the mitochondrial DNA may therefore evolve under selection owing to metabolic requirements. The killer whale, Orcinus orca, is polymorphic, has a global distribution and occupies a range of ecological niches. It is therefore a suitable organism for testing this hypothesis. We compared a global dataset of the complete mitochondrial genomes of 139 individuals for amino acid changes that were associated with radical physico-chemical property changes and were influenced by positive selection. Two such selected non-synonymous amino acid changes were found; one in each of two ecotypes that inhabit the Antarctic pack ice. Both substitutions were associated with changes in local polarity, increased steric constraints and α-helical tendencies that could influence overall metabolic performance, suggesting a functional change. PMID:20810427

  16. Radiology: "killer app" for next generation networks?

    PubMed

    McNeill, Kevin M

    2004-03-01

    The core principles of digital radiology were well developed by the end of the 1980 s. During the following decade tremendous improvements in computer technology enabled realization of those principles at an affordable cost. In this decade work can focus on highly distributed radiology in the context of the integrated health care enterprise. Over the same period computer networking has evolved from a relatively obscure field used by a small number of researchers across low-speed serial links to a pervasive technology that affects nearly all facets of society. Development directions in network technology will ultimately provide end-to-end data paths with speeds that match or exceed the speeds of data paths within the local network and even within workstations. This article describes key developments in Next Generation Networks, potential obstacles, and scenarios in which digital radiology can become a "killer app" that helps to drive deployment of new network infrastructure. PMID:15255516

  17. Targeting natural killer cells in cancer immunotherapy.

    PubMed

    Guillerey, Camille; Huntington, Nicholas D; Smyth, Mark J

    2016-08-19

    Alteration in the expression of cell-surface proteins is a common consequence of malignant transformation. Natural killer (NK) cells use an array of germline-encoded activating and inhibitory receptors that scan for altered protein-expression patterns, but tumor evasion of detection by the immune system is now recognized as one of the hallmarks of cancer. NK cells display rapid and potent immunity to metastasis or hematological cancers, and major efforts are now being undertaken to fully exploit NK cell anti-tumor properties in the clinic. Diverse approaches encompass the development of large-scale NK cell-expansion protocols for adoptive transfer, the establishment of a microenvironment favorable to NK cell activity, the redirection of NK cell activity against tumor cells and the release of inhibitory signals that limit NK cell function. In this Review we detail recent advances in NK cell-based immunotherapies and discuss the advantages and limitations of these strategies. PMID:27540992

  18. Immunobiology of natural killer cells. Volume II

    SciTech Connect

    Lotzova, E.; Herberman, R.B.

    1986-01-01

    This book provides a review of natural killer (NK) cell-mediated immunity in humans and experimental animal system. Topics for the volume include: In vivo activities of NK cells against primary and metastatic tumors in experimental animals; involvement of NK cells in human malignant disease; impaired NK cell profile in leukemia patients; in vivo modulation of NK activity in cancer patients; implications of aberrant NK cell activity in nonmalignant, chronic diseases; NK cell role in regulation of the growth and functions of hemopoietic and lymphoid cells; NK cells active against viral, bacterial, protozoan, and fungal infections; cytokine secretion and noncytotoxic functions of human large granular lymphocytes; augmentation of NK activity; regulation of NK cell activity by suppressor cells; NK cell cloning technology and characteristics of NK cell clones; comparison of antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) and NK activity, and index.

  19. Development and maturation of natural killer cells.

    PubMed

    Geiger, Theresa L; Sun, Joseph C

    2016-04-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells are innate lymphocytes that are critical for host protection against pathogens and cancer due to their ability to rapidly release inflammatory cytokines and kill infected or transformed cells. In the 40 years since their initial discovery, much has been learned about how this important cellular lineage develops and functions. We now know that NK cells are the founding members of an expanded family of lymphocyte known as innate lymphoid cells (ILC). Furthermore, we have recently discovered that NK cells can possess features of adaptive immunity such as antigen specificity and long-lived memory responses. Here we will review our current understanding of the molecular mechanisms driving development of NK cells from the common lymphoid progenitor (CLP) to mature NK cells, and from activated effectors to long-lived memory NK cells. PMID:26845614

  20. Natural Killer Cells and Antifungal Host Response

    PubMed Central

    Schmidt, Stanislaw; Zimmermann, Stefanie-Yvonne; Tramsen, Lars; Koehl, Ulrike

    2013-01-01

    As a result of improved experimental methodologies and a better understanding of the immune system, there is increasing insight into the antifungal activity of natural killer (NK) cells. Murine and human NK cells are able to damage fungi of different genera and species in vitro, and they exert both direct and indirect antifungal activity through cytotoxic molecules such as perforin and through cytokines and interferons, respectively. On the other hand, recent data suggest that fungi exhibit immunosuppressive effects on NK cells. Whereas clear in vivo data are lacking in humans, the importance of NK cells in the host response against fungi has been demonstrated in animal models. Further knowledge of the interaction of NK cells with fungi might help to better understand the pathogenesis of invasive fungal infections and to improve treatment strategies. PMID:23365210

  1. Fewer Drugs in Pipeline to Treat World's No. 1 Killer

    MedlinePlus

    ... 160676.html Fewer Drugs in Pipeline to Treat World's No. 1 Killer While number of cancer drugs ... 29, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Heart disease remains the world's leading cause of death, but development of drugs ...

  2. The eyeball killer: serial killings with postmortem globe enucleation.

    PubMed

    Coyle, Julie; Ross, Karen F; Barnard, Jeffrey J; Peacock, Elizabeth; Linch, Charles A; Prahlow, Joseph A

    2015-05-01

    Although serial killings are relatively rare, they can be the cause of a great deal of anxiety while the killer remains at-large. Despite the fact that the motivations for serial killings are typically quite complex, the psychological analysis of a serial killer can provide valuable insight into how and why certain individuals become serial killers. Such knowledge may be instrumental in preventing future serial killings or in solving ongoing cases. In certain serial killings, the various incidents have a variety of similar features. Identification of similarities between separate homicidal incidents is necessary to recognize that a serial killer may be actively killing. In this report, the authors present a group of serial killings involving three prostitutes who were shot to death over a 3-month period. Scene and autopsy findings, including the unusual finding of postmortem enucleation of the eyes, led investigators to recognize the serial nature of the homicides. PMID:25682709

  3. Towards PDT with Genetically Encoded Photosensitizer KillerRed: A Comparison of Continuous and Pulsed Laser Regimens in an Animal Tumor Model

    PubMed Central

    Shirmanova, Marina; Yuzhakova, Diana; Snopova, Ludmila; Perelman, Gregory; Serebrovskaya, Ekaterina; Lukyanov, Konstantin; Turchin, Ilya; Subochev, Pavel; Lukyanov, Sergey; Kamensky, Vladislav; Zagaynova, Elena

    2015-01-01

    The strong phototoxicity of the red fluorescent protein KillerRed allows it to be considered as a potential genetically encoded photosensitizer for the photodynamic therapy (PDT) of cancer. The advantages of KillerRed over chemical photosensitizers are its expression in tumor cells transduced with the appropriate gene and direct killing of cells through precise damage to any desired cell compartment. The ability of KillerRed to affect cell division and to induce cell death has already been demonstrated in cancer cell lines in vitro and HeLa tumor xenografts in vivo. However, the further development of this approach for PDT requires optimization of the method of treatment. In this study we tested the continuous wave (593 nm) and pulsed laser (584 nm, 10 Hz, 18 ns) modes to achieve an antitumor effect. The research was implemented on CT26 subcutaneous mouse tumors expressing KillerRed in fusion with histone H2B. The results showed that the pulsed mode provided a higher rate of photobleaching of KillerRed without any temperature increase on the tumor surface. PDT with the continuous wave laser was ineffective against CT26 tumors in mice, whereas the pulsed laser induced pronounced histopathological changes and inhibition of tumor growth. Therefore, we selected an effective regimen for PDT when using the genetically encoded photosensitizer KillerRed and pulsed laser irradiation. PMID:26657001

  4. Towards PDT with Genetically Encoded Photosensitizer KillerRed: A Comparison of Continuous and Pulsed Laser Regimens in an Animal Tumor Model.

    PubMed

    Shirmanova, Marina; Yuzhakova, Diana; Snopova, Ludmila; Perelman, Gregory; Serebrovskaya, Ekaterina; Lukyanov, Konstantin; Turchin, Ilya; Subochev, Pavel; Lukyanov, Sergey; Kamensky, Vladislav; Zagaynova, Elena

    2015-01-01

    The strong phototoxicity of the red fluorescent protein KillerRed allows it to be considered as a potential genetically encoded photosensitizer for the photodynamic therapy (PDT) of cancer. The advantages of KillerRed over chemical photosensitizers are its expression in tumor cells transduced with the appropriate gene and direct killing of cells through precise damage to any desired cell compartment. The ability of KillerRed to affect cell division and to induce cell death has already been demonstrated in cancer cell lines in vitro and HeLa tumor xenografts in vivo. However, the further development of this approach for PDT requires optimization of the method of treatment. In this study we tested the continuous wave (593 nm) and pulsed laser (584 nm, 10 Hz, 18 ns) modes to achieve an antitumor effect. The research was implemented on CT26 subcutaneous mouse tumors expressing KillerRed in fusion with histone H2B. The results showed that the pulsed mode provided a higher rate of photobleaching of KillerRed without any temperature increase on the tumor surface. PDT with the continuous wave laser was ineffective against CT26 tumors in mice, whereas the pulsed laser induced pronounced histopathological changes and inhibition of tumor growth. Therefore, we selected an effective regimen for PDT when using the genetically encoded photosensitizer KillerRed and pulsed laser irradiation. PMID:26657001

  5. Killer whale ecotypes: is there a global model?

    PubMed

    de Bruyn, P J N; Tosh, Cheryl A; Terauds, Aleks

    2013-02-01

    Killer whales, Orcinus orca, are top predators occupying key ecological roles in a variety of ecosystems and are one of the most widely distributed mammals on the planet. In consequence, there has been significant interest in understanding their basic biology and ecology. Long-term studies of Northern Hemisphere killer whales, particularly in the eastern North Pacific (ENP), have identified three ecologically distinct communities or ecotypes in that region. The success of these prominent ENP studies has led to similar efforts at clarifying the role of killer whale ecology in other regions, including Antarctica. In the Southern Hemisphere, killer whales present a range of behavioural, social and morphological characteristics to biologists, who often interpret this as evidence to categorize individuals or groups, and draw general ecological conclusions about these super-predators. Morphologically distinct forms (Type A, B, C, and D) occur in the Southern Ocean and studies of these different forms are often presented in conjunction with evidence for specialised ecology and behaviours. Here we review current knowledge of killer whale ecology and ecotyping globally and present a synthesis of existing knowledge. In particular, we highlight the complexity of killer whale ecology in the Southern Hemisphere and examine this in the context of comparatively well-studied Northern Hemisphere populations. We suggest that assigning erroneous or prefatory ecotypic status in the Southern Hemisphere could be detrimental to subsequent killer whale studies, because unsubstantiated characteristics may be assumed as a result of such classification. On this basis, we also recommend that ecotypic status classification for Southern Ocean killer whale morphotypes be reserved until more evidence-based ecological and taxonomic data are obtained. PMID:22882545

  6. Distribution of killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptors genes in the Italian Caucasian population

    PubMed Central

    Bontadini, A; Testi, M; Cuccia, MC; Martinetti, M; Carcassi, C; Chiesa, A; Cosentini, E; Dametto, E; Frison, S; Iannone, AM; Lombardo, C; Malagoli, A; Mariani, M; Mariotti, L; Mascaretti, L; Mele, L; Miotti, V; Nesci, S; Ozzella, G; Piancatelli, D; Romeo, G; Tagliaferri, C; Vatta, S; Andreani, M; Conte, R

    2006-01-01

    Background Killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptors (KIRs) are a family of inhibitory and activatory receptors that are expressed by most natural killer (NK) cells. The KIR gene family is polymorphic: genomic diversity is achieved through differences in gene content and allelic polymorphism. The number of KIR loci has been reported to vary among individuals, resulting in different KIR haplotypes. In this study we report the genotypic structure of KIRs in 217 unrelated healthy Italian individuals from 22 immunogenetics laboratories, located in the northern, central and southern regions of Italy. Methods Two hundred and seventeen DNA samples were studied by a low resolution PCR-SSP kit designed to identify all KIR genes. Results All 17 KIR genes were observed in the population with different frequencies than other Caucasian and non-Caucasian populations; framework genes KIR3DL3, KIR3DP1, KIR2DL4 and KIR3DL2 were present in all individuals. Sixty-five different profiles were found in this Italian population study. Haplotype A remains the most prevalent and genotype 1, with a frequency of 28.5%, is the most commonly observed in the Italian population. Conclusion The Italian Caucasian population shows polymorphism of the KIR gene family like other Caucasian and non-Caucasian populations. Although 64 genotypes have been observed, genotype 1 remains the most frequent as already observed in other populations. Such knowledge of the KIR gene distribution in populations is very useful in the study of associations with diseases and in selection of donors for haploidentical bone marrow transplantation. PMID:17069649

  7. KillerOrange, a Genetically Encoded Photosensitizer Activated by Blue and Green Light

    PubMed Central

    Bozhanova, Nina G.; Sharonov, George V.; Staroverov, Dmitriy B.; Egorov, Evgeny S.; Ryabova, Anastasia V.; Solntsev, Kyril M.; Mishin, Alexander S.; Lukyanov, Konstantin A.

    2015-01-01

    Genetically encoded photosensitizers, proteins that produce reactive oxygen species when illuminated with visible light, are increasingly used as optogenetic tools. Their applications range from ablation of specific cell populations to precise optical inactivation of cellular proteins. Here, we report an orange mutant of red fluorescent protein KillerRed that becomes toxic when illuminated with blue or green light. This new protein, KillerOrange, carries a tryptophan-based chromophore that is novel for photosensitizers. We show that KillerOrange can be used simultaneously and independently from KillerRed in both bacterial and mammalian cells offering chromatic orthogonality for light-activated toxicity. PMID:26679300

  8. Ten microsatellite loci from Zamia integrifolia (Zamiaceae)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Ten microsatellite loci isolated from Zamia integrifolia are described. All 10 are polymorphic, with three to ten alleles across 36 members of a single population from South Florida. Heterozygosity ranged from 0.067 to 1. Two loci depart significantly from Hardy Weinberg Equilibrium, and exhibit het...

  9. Revving up Natural Killer Cells and Cytokine-Induced Killer Cells Against Hematological Malignancies.

    PubMed

    Pittari, Gianfranco; Filippini, Perla; Gentilcore, Giusy; Grivel, Jean-Charles; Rutella, Sergio

    2015-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells belong to innate immunity and exhibit cytolytic activity against infectious pathogens and tumor cells. NK-cell function is finely tuned by receptors that transduce inhibitory or activating signals, such as killer immunoglobulin-like receptors, NK Group 2 member D (NKG2D), NKG2A/CD94, NKp46, and others, and recognize both foreign and self-antigens expressed by NK-susceptible targets. Recent insights into NK-cell developmental intermediates have translated into a more accurate definition of culture conditions for the in vitro generation and propagation of human NK cells. In this respect, interleukin (IL)-15 and IL-21 are instrumental in driving NK-cell differentiation and maturation, and hold great promise for the design of optimal NK-cell culture protocols. Cytokine-induced killer (CIK) cells possess phenotypic and functional hallmarks of both T cells and NK cells. Similar to T cells, they express CD3 and are expandable in culture, while not requiring functional priming for in vivo activity, like NK cells. CIK cells may offer some advantages over other cell therapy products, including ease of in vitro propagation and no need for exogenous administration of IL-2 for in vivo priming. NK cells and CIK cells can be expanded using a variety of clinical-grade approaches, before their infusion into patients with cancer. Herein, we discuss GMP-compliant strategies to isolate and expand human NK and CIK cells for immunotherapy purposes, focusing on clinical trials of adoptive transfer to patients with hematological malignancies. PMID:26029215

  10. KillerRed and miniSOG as genetically encoded photosensitizers for photodynamic therapy of cancer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shirmanova, Marina V.; Serebrovskaya, Ekaterina O.; Snopova, Ludmila B.; Kuznetsova, Maria M.; Ryumina, Alina P.; Turchin, Ilya V.; Sergeeva, Ekaterina A.; Ignatova, Nadezhda I.; Klementieva, Natalia V.; Lukyanov, Konstantin A.; Lukyanov, Sergey A.; Zagaynova, Elena V.

    2013-06-01

    Despite of the success of photodynamic therapy (PDT) in cancer treatment, the problems of low selective accumulation of a photosensitizer in a tumor and skin phototoxicity have not resolved yet. The idea of encoding of a photosensitizer in genome of cancer cells is attractive, particularly because it can provide highly selective light induced cell killing. This work is aimed at the development of new approach to PDT of cancer, namely to using genetically encoded photosensitizers. A phototoxicity of red fluorescent GFP-like protein KillerRed and FMN-binding protein miniSOG was investigated on HeLa tumor xenografts in nude mice. The tumors were generated by subcutaneous injection of HeLa cells stably expressing the phototoxic proteins. The tumors were irradiated with 594 nm or 473 nm laser at 150 mW/cm2 for 20 or 30 min, repeatedly. Fluorescence intensity of the tumors was measured in vivo before and after each treatment procedure. Detailed pathomorphological analysis was performed 24 h after the therapy. On the epi-fluorescence images in vivo photobleaching of both proteins was observed indicating photodynamic reaction. Substantial pathomorphological abnormalities were found in the treated KillerRed-expressing tumor tissue, such as vacuolization of cytoplasm, cellular and nuclear membrane destruction, activation of apoptosis. In contrast, miniSOG-expressing tumors displayed no reaction to PDT, presumably due to the lack of FMN cofactor needed for fluorescence recovery of the flavoprotein. The results are of interest for photodynamic therapy as a proof of possibility to induce photodamages in cancer cells in vivo using genetically encoded photosensitizers.

  11. Revving up Natural Killer Cells and Cytokine-Induced Killer Cells Against Hematological Malignancies

    PubMed Central

    Pittari, Gianfranco; Filippini, Perla; Gentilcore, Giusy; Grivel, Jean-Charles; Rutella, Sergio

    2015-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells belong to innate immunity and exhibit cytolytic activity against infectious pathogens and tumor cells. NK-cell function is finely tuned by receptors that transduce inhibitory or activating signals, such as killer immunoglobulin-like receptors, NK Group 2 member D (NKG2D), NKG2A/CD94, NKp46, and others, and recognize both foreign and self-antigens expressed by NK-susceptible targets. Recent insights into NK-cell developmental intermediates have translated into a more accurate definition of culture conditions for the in vitro generation and propagation of human NK cells. In this respect, interleukin (IL)-15 and IL-21 are instrumental in driving NK-cell differentiation and maturation, and hold great promise for the design of optimal NK-cell culture protocols. Cytokine-induced killer (CIK) cells possess phenotypic and functional hallmarks of both T cells and NK cells. Similar to T cells, they express CD3 and are expandable in culture, while not requiring functional priming for in vivo activity, like NK cells. CIK cells may offer some advantages over other cell therapy products, including ease of in vitro propagation and no need for exogenous administration of IL-2 for in vivo priming. NK cells and CIK cells can be expanded using a variety of clinical-grade approaches, before their infusion into patients with cancer. Herein, we discuss GMP-compliant strategies to isolate and expand human NK and CIK cells for immunotherapy purposes, focusing on clinical trials of adoptive transfer to patients with hematological malignancies. PMID:26029215

  12. Natural Killer Cells in Viral Hepatitis

    PubMed Central

    Rehermann, Barbara

    2015-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells are traditionally regarded as first-line effectors of the innate immune response, but they also have a distinct role in chronic infection. Here, we review the role of NK cells against hepatitis C virus (HCV) and hepatitis B virus (HBV), two agents that cause acute and chronic hepatitis in humans. Interest in NK cells was initially sparked by genetic studies that demonstrated an association between NK cell–related genes and the outcome of HCV infection. Viral hepatitis also provides a model to study the NK cell response to both endogenous and exogenous type I interferon (IFN). Levels of IFN-stimulated genes increase in both acute and chronic HCV infection and pegylated IFNα has been the mainstay of HCV and HBV treatment for decades. In chronic viral hepatitis, NK cells display decreased production of antiviral cytokines. This phenotype is found in both HCV and HBV infection but is induced by different mechanisms. Potent antivirals now provide the opportunity to study the reversibility of the suppressed cytokine production of NK cells in comparison with the antigen-induced defect in IFNγ and tumor necrosis factor-α production of virus-specific T cells. This has implications for immune reconstitution in other conditions of chronic inflammation and immune exhaustion, such as human immunodeficiency virus infection and cancer. PMID:26682281

  13. Natural Killer Cells for Therapy of Leukemia

    PubMed Central

    Suck, Garnet; Linn, Yeh Ching; Tonn, Torsten

    2016-01-01

    Summary Clinical application of natural killer (NK) cells against leukemia is an area of intense investigation. In human leukocyte antigen-mismatched allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantations (HSCT), alloreactive NK cells exert powerful anti-leukemic activity in preventing relapse in the absence of graft-versus-host disease, particularly in acute myeloid leukemia patients. Adoptive transfer of donor NK cells post-HSCT or in non-transplant scenarios may be superior to the currently widely used unmanipulated donor lymphocyte infusion. This concept could be further improved through transfusion of activated NK cells. Significant progress has been made in good manufacturing practice (GMP)-compliant large-scale production of stimulated effectors. However, inherent limitations remain. These include differing yields and compositions of the end-product due to donor variability and inefficient means for cryopreservation. Moreover, the impact of the various novel activation strategies on NK cell biology and in vivo behavior are barely understood. In contrast, reproduction of the third-party NK-92 drug from a cryostored GMP-compliant master cell bank is straightforward and efficient. Safety for the application of this highly cytotoxic cell line was demonstrated in first clinical trials. This novel ‘off-the-shelf’ product could become a treatment option for a broad patient population. For specific tumor targeting chimeric-antigen-receptor-engineered NK-92 cells have been designed. PMID:27226791

  14. Natural Killer Cells and Liver Fibrosis

    PubMed Central

    Fasbender, Frank; Widera, Agata; Hengstler, Jan G.; Watzl, Carsten

    2016-01-01

    In the 40 years since the discovery of natural killer (NK) cells, it has been well established that these innate lymphocytes are important for early and effective immune responses against transformed cells and infections with different pathogens. In addition to these classical functions of NK cells, we now know that they are part of a larger family of innate lymphoid cells and that they can even mediate memory-like responses. Additionally, tissue-resident NK cells with distinct phenotypical and functional characteristics have been identified. Here, we focus on the phenotype of different NK cell subpopulations that can be found in the liver and summarize the current knowledge about the functional role of these cells with a special emphasis on liver fibrosis. NK cell cytotoxicity can contribute to liver damage in different forms of liver disease. However, NK cells can limit liver fibrosis by killing hepatic stellate cell-derived myofibroblasts, which play a key role in this pathogenic process. Therefore, liver NK cells need to be tightly regulated in order to balance these beneficial and pathological effects. PMID:26858722

  15. The evolution of natural killer cell receptors.

    PubMed

    Carrillo-Bustamante, Paola; Keşmir, Can; de Boer, Rob J

    2016-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells are immune cells that play a crucial role against viral infections and tumors. To be tolerant against healthy tissue and simultaneously attack infected cells, the activity of NK cells is tightly regulated by a sophisticated array of germline-encoded activating and inhibiting receptors. The best characterized mechanism of NK cell activation is "missing self" detection, i.e., the recognition of virally infected or transformed cells that reduce their MHC expression to evade cytotoxic T cells. To monitor the expression of MHC-I on target cells, NK cells have monomorphic inhibitory receptors which interact with conserved MHC molecules. However, there are other NK cell receptors (NKRs) encoded by gene families showing a remarkable genetic diversity. Thus, NKR haplotypes contain several genes encoding for receptors with activating and inhibiting signaling, and that vary in gene content and allelic polymorphism. But if missing-self detection can be achieved by a monomorphic NKR system why have these polygenic and polymorphic receptors evolved? Here, we review the expansion of NKR receptor families in different mammal species, and we discuss several hypotheses that possibly underlie the diversification of the NK cell receptor complex, including the evolution of viral decoys, peptide sensitivity, and selective MHC-downregulation. PMID:26392015

  16. Natural Killer Cells for Therapy of Leukemia.

    PubMed

    Suck, Garnet; Linn, Yeh Ching; Tonn, Torsten

    2016-03-01

    Clinical application of natural killer (NK) cells against leukemia is an area of intense investigation. In human leukocyte antigen-mismatched allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantations (HSCT), alloreactive NK cells exert powerful anti-leukemic activity in preventing relapse in the absence of graft-versus-host disease, particularly in acute myeloid leukemia patients. Adoptive transfer of donor NK cells post-HSCT or in non-transplant scenarios may be superior to the currently widely used unmanipulated donor lymphocyte infusion. This concept could be further improved through transfusion of activated NK cells. Significant progress has been made in good manufacturing practice (GMP)-compliant large-scale production of stimulated effectors. However, inherent limitations remain. These include differing yields and compositions of the end-product due to donor variability and inefficient means for cryopreservation. Moreover, the impact of the various novel activation strategies on NK cell biology and in vivo behavior are barely understood. In contrast, reproduction of the third-party NK-92 drug from a cryostored GMP-compliant master cell bank is straightforward and efficient. Safety for the application of this highly cytotoxic cell line was demonstrated in first clinical trials. This novel 'off-the-shelf' product could become a treatment option for a broad patient population. For specific tumor targeting chimeric-antigen-receptor-engineered NK-92 cells have been designed. PMID:27226791

  17. Natural Killer Cells Modulation in Hematological Malignancies

    PubMed Central

    Baier, Céline; Fino, Aurore; Sanchez, Carole; Farnault, Laure; Rihet, Pascal; Kahn-Perlès, Brigitte; Costello, Régis T.

    2013-01-01

    Hematological malignancies (HM) treatment improved over the last years resulting in increased achievement of complete or partial remission, but unfortunately high relapse rates are still observed, due to remaining minimal residual disease. Therefore, sustainment of long-term remission is crucial, using either drug maintenance treatment or by boosting or prolonging an immune response. Immune system has a key role in tumor surveillance. Nonetheless, tumor-cells evade the specific T-lymphocyte mediated immune surveillance using many mechanisms but especially by the down-regulation of the expression of HLA class I antigens. In theory, these tumor-cells lacking normal expression of HLA class I molecules should be destroyed by natural killer (NK) cells, according to the missing-self hypothesis. NK cells, at the frontier of innate and adaptive immune system, have a central role in tumor-cells surveillance as demonstrated in the setting of allogenic stem cell transplantation. Nevertheless, tumors develop various mechanisms to escape from NK innate immune pressure. Abnormal NK cytolytic functions have been described in many HM. We present here various mechanisms involved in the escape of HM from NK-cell surveillance, i.e., NK-cells quantitative and qualitative abnormalities. PMID:24391641

  18. REPLICATIVE POTENTIAL OF HUMAN NATURAL KILLER CELLS

    PubMed Central

    Fujisaki, Hiroyuki; Kakuda, Harumi; Imai, Chihaya; Mullighan, Charles G.; Campana, Dario

    2009-01-01

    The replicative potential of human CD56+ CD3− natural killer (NK) cells is unknown. We found that by exposing NK cells to the leukemic cell line K562 genetically modified to express 4-1BB ligand and interleukin 15 (K562-mb15-41BBL), they expanded for up to 30 population doublings, achieving numbers that ranged from 1.6 × 105 to 1.2 × 1011 percent (median, 5.9 × 106 percent; n = 7) of those originally seeded. However, NK cells eventually became unresponsive to stimulation and died. Their demise could be suppressed by enforcing the expression of the human telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT) gene. TERT-overexpressing NK cells continued to proliferate in response to K562-mb15-41BBL stimulation for more than 1 year of culture, while maintaining a normal karyotype and genotype. Long-lived NK cells had high cytotoxicity against myeloid and T-lineage leukemic cells. They remained susceptible to genetic manipulation, becoming highly cytotoxic to B-lineage leukemic cells after expression of anti-CD19 signaling receptors. Thus, human NK cells have a replicative potential similar to that of T lymphocytes and their lifespan can be significantly prolonged by an increase in TERT activity. We suggest that the methods described here should have many applications in studies of NK cell biology and NK cell-based therapies. PMID:19344420

  19. Natural Killer Cells: Key Players in Endometriosis.

    PubMed

    Thiruchelvam, Uma; Wingfield, Mary; O'Farrelly, Cliona

    2015-10-01

    Endometriosis affects more than 10% of women, causing significant pain and morbidity. It is also a significant cause of infertility. The aetiology of the disease remains an enigma, and the mechanisms responsible for the associated infertility are unclear. A role for immune cells in endometriosis has been postulated, with attention directed towards natural killer (NK) cells and macrophages. NK cells kill tumours and infected cells but also have roles in tissue remodelling in several organs including the uterus and are key to successful pregnancy. Here, we explore evidence (from peer-reviewed published articles) of phenotypic and functional abnormalities in NK cell subpopulations of women with endometriosis. It is clear that peripheral blood NK cells and peritoneal NK cells have reduced cytotoxic function in women with endometriosis. Uterine NK cells have a vital role in infertility, but very little research has been carried out in this area. We propose that abnormal u NK cell activity may contribute to the pathogenesis of endometriosis and its associated infertility and that future research should focus on this complex area. PMID:26104509

  20. Visualizing compound transgenic zebrafish in development: a tale of green fluorescent protein and KillerRed.

    PubMed

    Korzh, Vladimir; Teh, Cathleen; Kondrychyn, Igor; Chudakov, Dmitry M; Lukyanov, Sergey

    2011-03-01

    Optically translucent embryos of model vertebrates expressing transgenic fluorescent proteins provide a possibility to unravel developmental events, particularly when combined with live imaging. An introduction of transposon-mediated transgenesis resulted in generation of a number of transgenics expressing cytosolic green fluorescent protein in a tissue-specific manner. The recent generation of photodynamic and differentially tagged fluorescent proteins opened a possibility not only to mix-and-match living markers of different color, but also to employ them as powerful experimental tools for studies of cell physiology. Using this approach, transgenic lines expressing membrane-tagged KillerRed (memKR), a genetically encoded photosensitizer, with little or no inducible phototoxicity under confocal imaging were generated. Phototoxicity is only induced by intense green or white light generated by the mercury lamp in a widefield mode. Here, we discuss new ideas born from experimentation using the zebrafish Tol2 transposon-mediated enhancer trap transgenic lines expressing memKR. Because of accumulation on the cell membrane, memKR reveals fine details of cellular morphology. In combination with cytosolic green fluorescent protein, the multicolor in vivo imaging of memKR transgenics reveals complex developmental processes and provides a possibility to manipulate them by regulated generation of reactive oxygen species. PMID:21348774

  1. Suppression of newborn natural killer cell activity by prostaglandin E2

    SciTech Connect

    Milch, P.O.; Salvatore, W.; Luft, B.; Baker, D.A.

    1988-10-01

    The effect of prostaglandin E2 on natural killer cell activity of cord blood was examined. Natural killer cell activity, determined by chromium 51 release, was significantly reduced after prostaglandin E2 (1 microgram/ml) treatment. Prostaglandin E2 has been found to enhance the cellular spread of herpesvirus. Thus prostaglandins may enhance viral infections indirectly by suppressing natural killer cell activity.

  2. 50 CFR 229.37 - False Killer Whale Take Reduction Plan.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 11 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false False Killer Whale Take Reduction Plan... § 229.37 False Killer Whale Take Reduction Plan. (a) Purpose and scope. The purpose of this section is to implement the False Killer Whale Take Reduction Plan to reduce mortality and serious injury of...

  3. Biotyping of Malassezia pachydermatis strains using the killer system.

    PubMed

    Coutinho, S D; Paula, C R

    1998-06-01

    The killer phenomenon has been used as epidemiological marker for Candida albicans, where hundreds of biotypes can be obtained. The objective of this study is to observe the behaviour of 30 strains of Malassezia pachydermatis isolated from dogs with otitis (15) or dermatitis (15) against 9 killer yeasts, which, when grouped in triplets produced a 3 digit code (biotype). The growth inhibition of the 30 strains of M. pachydermatis due to the effect of the killer yeasts used permitted the determination of the following biotypes: 888 (33.3%), 212 (26.7%), 111 (16.7%), 312 (6.7%), 512 (6.7%), 242 (3.3%), 311 (3.3%) and 411 (3.3%). Biotypes 888, 212 and 111 occurred most frequently in both ear canal and skin samples. PMID:17655416

  4. Five Hundred Microsatellite Loci for Peromyscus

    PubMed Central

    WEBER, JESSE N.; PETERS, MAUREEN B; TSYUSKO, OLGA V.; LINNEN, CATHERINE R.; HAGEN, CRIS; SCHABLE, NANCY A.; TUBERVILLE, TRACEY D.; MCKEE, ANNA M.; LANCE, STACEY L.; JONES, KENNETH L.; FISHER, HEIDI S.; DEWEY, MICHAEL J.; HOEKSTRA, HOPI E.; GLENN, TRAVIS C.

    2009-01-01

    Mice of the genus Peromyscus, including several endangered subspecies, occur throughout North America and have been important models for conservation research. We describe 526 primer pairs that amplify microsatellite DNA loci for P. maniculatus bairdii, 467 of which also amplify in P. polionotus subgriseus. For 12 of these loci, we report diversity data from a natural population. These markers will be an important resource for future genomic studies of Peromyscus evolution and mammalian conservation. PMID:20563244

  5. Natural Killer Cells as Helper Cells in Dendritic Cell Cancer Vaccines

    PubMed Central

    Pampena, María Betina; Levy, Estrella Mariel

    2015-01-01

    Vaccine-based cancer immunotherapy has generated highly variable clinical results due to differing methods of vaccine preparation and variation in patient populations among other lesser factors. Moreover, these clinical responses do not necessarily correspond with the induction of tumor-specific cytotoxic lymphocytes. Here, we review the participation of natural killer (NK) cells as alternative immune components that could cooperate in successful vaccination treatment. NK cells have been described as helper cells in dendritic cell-based cancer vaccines, but the role in other kinds of vaccination strategies (whole cells, peptide, or DNA-based vaccines) is poorly understood. In this article, we address the following issues regarding the role of NK cells in cancer vaccines: NK cell anti-tumor action sites, and the loci of NK cell interaction with other immune cells; descriptions of new data on the memory characteristics of NK cells described in infectious diseases; and finally phenotypical and functional changes after vaccination measured by immunomonitoring in preclinical and clinical settings. PMID:25674087

  6. Ezh2 regulates differentiation and function of natural killer cells through histone methyltransferase activity.

    PubMed

    Yin, Jie; Leavenworth, Jianmei W; Li, Yang; Luo, Qi; Xie, Huafeng; Liu, Xinhua; Huang, Shan; Yan, Han; Fu, Zheng; Zhang, Liyun Y; Zhang, Litao; Hao, Junwei; Wu, Xudong; Deng, Xianming; Roberts, Charles W M; Orkin, Stuart H; Cantor, Harvey; Wang, Xi

    2015-12-29

    Changes of histone modification status at critical lineage-specifying gene loci in multipotent precursors can influence cell fate commitment. The contribution of these epigenetic mechanisms to natural killer (NK) cell lineage determination from common lymphoid precursors is not understood. Here we investigate the impact of histone methylation repressive marks (H3 Lys27 trimethylation; H3K27(me3)) on early NK cell differentiation. We demonstrate that selective loss of the histone-lysine N-methyltransferase Ezh2 (enhancer of zeste homolog 2) or inhibition of its enzymatic activity with small molecules unexpectedly increased generation of the IL-15 receptor (IL-15R) CD122(+) NK precursors and mature NK progeny from both mouse and human hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells. Mechanistic studies revealed that enhanced NK cell expansion and cytotoxicity against tumor cells were associated with up-regulation of CD122 and the C-type lectin receptor NKG2D. Moreover, NKG2D deficiency diminished the positive effects of Ezh2 inhibitors on NK cell commitment. Identification of the contribution of Ezh2 to NK lineage specification and function reveals an epigenetic-based mechanism that regulates NK cell development and provides insight into the clinical application of Ezh2 inhibitors in NK-based cancer immunotherapies. PMID:26668377

  7. Ezh2 regulates differentiation and function of natural killer cells through histone methyltransferase activity

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Jie; Leavenworth, Jianmei W.; Li, Yang; Luo, Qi; Xie, Huafeng; Liu, Xinhua; Huang, Shan; Yan, Han; Fu, Zheng; Zhang, Liyun Y.; Zhang, Litao; Hao, Junwei; Wu, Xudong; Deng, Xianming; Roberts, Charles W. M.; Orkin, Stuart H.; Cantor, Harvey; Wang, Xi

    2015-01-01

    Changes of histone modification status at critical lineage-specifying gene loci in multipotent precursors can influence cell fate commitment. The contribution of these epigenetic mechanisms to natural killer (NK) cell lineage determination from common lymphoid precursors is not understood. Here we investigate the impact of histone methylation repressive marks (H3 Lys27 trimethylation; H3K27me3) on early NK cell differentiation. We demonstrate that selective loss of the histone-lysine N-methyltransferase Ezh2 (enhancer of zeste homolog 2) or inhibition of its enzymatic activity with small molecules unexpectedly increased generation of the IL-15 receptor (IL-15R) CD122+ NK precursors and mature NK progeny from both mouse and human hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells. Mechanistic studies revealed that enhanced NK cell expansion and cytotoxicity against tumor cells were associated with up-regulation of CD122 and the C-type lectin receptor NKG2D. Moreover, NKG2D deficiency diminished the positive effects of Ezh2 inhibitors on NK cell commitment. Identification of the contribution of Ezh2 to NK lineage specification and function reveals an epigenetic-based mechanism that regulates NK cell development and provides insight into the clinical application of Ezh2 inhibitors in NK-based cancer immunotherapies. PMID:26668377

  8. Inferred Paternity and Male Reproductive Success in a Killer Whale (Orcinus orca) Population.

    PubMed

    Ford, Michael J; Hanson, M Bradley; Hempelmann, Jennifer A; Ayres, Katherine L; Emmons, Candice K; Schorr, Gregory S; Baird, Robin W; Balcomb, Kenneth C; Wasser, Samuel K; Parsons, Kim M; Balcomb-Bartok, Kelly

    2011-01-01

    We used data from 78 individuals at 26 microsatellite loci to infer parental and sibling relationships within a community of fish-eating ("resident") eastern North Pacific killer whales (Orcinus orca). Paternity analysis involving 15 mother/calf pairs and 8 potential fathers and whole-pedigree analysis of the entire sample produced consistent results. The variance in male reproductive success was greater than expected by chance and similar to that of other aquatic mammals. Although the number of confirmed paternities was small, reproductive success appeared to increase with male age and size. We found no evidence that males from outside this small population sired any of the sampled individuals. In contrast to previous results in a different population, many offspring were the result of matings within the same "pod" (long-term social group). Despite this pattern of breeding within social groups, we found no evidence of offspring produced by matings between close relatives, and the average internal relatedness of individuals was significantly less than expected if mating were random. The population's estimated effective size was <30 or about 1/3 of the current census size. Patterns of allele frequency variation were consistent with a population bottleneck. PMID:21757487

  9. Adaptive prolonged postreproductive life span in killer whales.

    PubMed

    Foster, Emma A; Franks, Daniel W; Mazzi, Sonia; Darden, Safi K; Balcomb, Ken C; Ford, John K B; Croft, Darren P

    2012-09-14

    Prolonged life after reproduction is difficult to explain evolutionarily unless it arises as a physiological side effect of increased longevity or it benefits related individuals (i.e., increases inclusive fitness). There is little evidence that postreproductive life spans are adaptive in nonhuman animals. By using multigenerational records for two killer whale (Orcinus orca) populations in which females can live for decades after their final parturition, we show that postreproductive mothers increase the survival of offspring, particularly their older male offspring. This finding may explain why female killer whales have evolved the longest postreproductive life span of all nonhuman animals. PMID:22984064

  10. Loci-STREAM Version 0.9

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wright, Jeffrey; Thakur, Siddharth

    2006-01-01

    Loci-STREAM is an evolving computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software tool for simulating possibly chemically reacting, possibly unsteady flows in diverse settings, including rocket engines, turbomachines, oil refineries, etc. Loci-STREAM implements a pressure- based flow-solving algorithm that utilizes unstructured grids. (The benefit of low memory usage by pressure-based algorithms is well recognized by experts in the field.) The algorithm is robust for flows at all speeds from zero to hypersonic. The flexibility of arbitrary polyhedral grids enables accurate, efficient simulation of flows in complex geometries, including those of plume-impingement problems. The present version - Loci-STREAM version 0.9 - includes an interface with the Portable, Extensible Toolkit for Scientific Computation (PETSc) library for access to enhanced linear-equation-solving programs therein that accelerate convergence toward a solution. The name "Loci" reflects the creation of this software within the Loci computational framework, which was developed at Mississippi State University for the primary purpose of simplifying the writing of complex multidisciplinary application programs to run in distributed-memory computing environments including clusters of personal computers. Loci has been designed to relieve application programmers of the details of programming for distributed-memory computers.

  11. Effect of different levels of alcohol consumption on natural killer and lymphokine activated killer cells

    SciTech Connect

    Klassen, L.W.; DeVasure, J.M.; Lemley-Gillespie, S.D.; Thiele, G.M. Omaha VA Hospital, NE )

    1991-03-11

    The effect of alcohol consumption on natural killer (NK) cell activity is controversial as both increased and decreased levels have been reported. It was the purpose of this study to determine the effects of feeding BDF1 mice different levels of alcohol on NK and lymphokine activated killer (LAK) cell activity. After four-six weeks of chronic alcohol feeding, mice were sacrificed, spleen cells obtained and assayed for NK and IL-2 boosted NK activity against YAC-1 cells in a traditional {sup 51}chromium release assay. Cells were also cultured in the presence of IL-2 for five days and tested for cytolytic activity using P815 cells as targets. Cells from each group were passed over a nylon wool column and the adherent (AD) and nonadherent (NAD) populations collected and tested as above. Increased NK, 24 hour IL-2 boosted NK and 5 day LAK activity were observed only in the spleen cells obtained from mice on 20% alcohol. Also, NAD populations had a 2-4 fold higher lytic unit values (LU{sub 20}) at all levels of alcohol consumption and in all assays, as compared with the unseparated spleen cells. Analysis of cell surface markers on these three populations of cells show that there were differences in MAC-2, Asialo GM-1, Thy 1.2, B220 and NK 1.1 that may correlate with the differences observed in the cytolytic assays. These data suggest that different levels of alcohol affect the cytolytic activity of NK and LAK cells and may result from alterations in the cell subset populations.

  12. Ultrasonic whistles of killer whales (Orcinus orca) recorded in the North Pacific (L).

    PubMed

    Filatova, Olga A; Ford, John K B; Matkin, Craig O; Barrett-Lennard, Lance G; Burdin, Alexander M; Hoyt, Erich

    2012-12-01

    Ultrasonic whistles were previously found in North Atlantic killer whales and were suggested to occur in eastern North Pacific killer whales based on the data from autonomous recorders. In this study ultrasonic whistles were found in the recordings from two encounters with the eastern North Pacific offshore ecotype killer whales and one encounter with the western North Pacific killer whales of unknown ecotype. All ultrasonic whistles were highly stereotyped and all but two had downsweep contours. These results demonstrate that specific sound categories can be shared by killer whales from different ocean basins. PMID:23231094

  13. Killer Cell Immunoglobulin-Like Receptor-Ligand Matching and Outcomes after Unrelated Cord Blood Transplantation in Acute Myeloid Leukemia.

    PubMed

    Rocha, Vanderson; Ruggeri, Annalisa; Spellman, Stephen; Wang, Tao; Sobecks, Ronald; Locatelli, Franco; Askar, Medhat; Michel, Gerard; Arcese, William; Iori, Anna Paola; Purtill, Duncan; Danby, Robert; Sanz, Guillermo F; Gluckman, Eliane; Eapen, Mary

    2016-07-01

    The effect of killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptor (KIR)-ligand matching on outcomes after unrelated cord blood (CB) transplantation was studied in 461 patients with acute myeloid leukemia, categorizing KIR ligand for HLA-C groups C1 and C2 and Bw4. Donor-recipient HLA matching considered allele-level matching at HLA-A, -B, -C, and -DRB1. Separate analyses were conducted for 6-7/8 HLA-matched and 3-5/8 HLA-matched transplants because HLA matching confounded KIR-ligand matching (ie, KIR-ligand mismatching was less likely with better HLA matching). All patients received single CB unit and myeloablative conditioning. There were no significant differences in nonrelapse mortality (NRM), relapse, and overall mortality by KIR-ligand match status. However, among recipients of 3-5/8 HLA-matched transplants, NRM (HR, 2.26; P = .008) and overall mortality (HR, 1.78; P = .008) but not relapse were higher with KIR-ligand mismatched (host-versus-graft direction) compared with KIR-ligand matched transplants. These data do not support selecting CB units based on KIR-ligand match status for transplants mismatched at 1 or 2 HLA loci. Although transplants mismatched at 3 or more HLA loci are not recommended, avoiding KIR-ligand mismatching in this setting lowers mortality risks. PMID:27090957

  14. Genomic Modifiers of Natural Killer Cells, Immune Responsiveness and Lymphoid Tissue Remodeling Together Increase Host Resistance to Viral Infection

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Heather; Prince, Jessica; Stadnisky, Michael D.; Anderson, Monique; Nash, William; Rival, Claudia; Wei, Hairong; Gamache, Awndre; Farber, Charles R.; Tung, Kenneth; Brown, Michael G.

    2016-01-01

    The MHC class I Dk molecule supplies vital host resistance during murine cytomegalovirus (MCMV) infection. Natural killer (NK) cells expressing the Ly49G2 inhibitory receptor, which specifically binds Dk, are required to control viral spread. The extent of Dk-dependent host resistance, however, differs significantly amongst related strains of mice, C57L and MA/My. As a result, we predicted that relatively small-effect modifier genetic loci might together shape immune cell features, NK cell reactivity, and the host immune response to MCMV. A robust Dk-dependent genetic effect, however, has so far hindered attempts to identify additional host resistance factors. Thus, we applied genomic mapping strategies and multicolor flow cytometric analysis of immune cells in naive and virus-infected hosts to identify genetic modifiers of the host immune response to MCMV. We discovered and validated many quantitative trait loci (QTL); these were mapped to at least 19 positions on 16 chromosomes. Intriguingly, one newly discovered non-MHC locus (Cmv5) controlled splenic NK cell accrual, secondary lymphoid organ structure, and lymphoid follicle development during MCMV infection. We infer that Cmv5 aids host resistance to MCMV infection by expanding NK cells needed to preserve and protect essential tissue structural elements, to enhance lymphoid remodeling and to increase viral clearance in spleen. PMID:26845690

  15. Expression of Meiotic Drive Elements Spore Killer-2 and Spore Killer-3 in Asci of Neurospora Tetrasperma

    PubMed Central

    Raju, N. B.; Perkins, D. D.

    1991-01-01

    It was shown previously that when a chromosomal Spore killer factor is heterozygous in Neurospora species with eight-spored asci, the four sensitive ascospores in each ascus die and the four survivors are all killers. Sk-2(K) and Sk-3(K) are nonrecombining haplotypes that segregate with the centromere of linkage group III. No killing occurs when either one of these killers is homozygous, but each is sensitive to killing by the other in crosses of Sk-2(K) X Sk-3(K). In the present study, Sk-2(K) and Sk-3(K) were transferred by recurrent backcrosses from the eight-spored species Neurospora crassa into Neurospora tetrasperma, a pseudohomothallic species which normally makes asci with four large spores, each heterokaryotic for mating type and for any other centromere-linked genes that are heterozygous in the cross. The action of Sk-2(K) and Sk-3(K) in N. tetrasperma is that predicted from their behavior in eight-spored species. A sensitive nucleus is protected from killing if it is enclosed in the same ascospore with a killer nucleus. Crosses of Sk-2(K) X Sk-2(S), Sk-3(K) X Sk-3(S), and Sk-2(K) X Sk-3(K) all produce four-spored asci that are wild type in appearance, with the ascospores heterokaryotic and viable. The Eight-spore gene E, which shows variable penetrance, was used to obtain N. tetrasperma asci in which two to eight spores are small and homokaryotic. When killer and sensitive alleles are segregating in the presence of E, only those ascospores that contain a killer allele survive. Half of the small ascospores are killed. In crosses of Sk-2(K) X Sk-3(K) (with E heterozygous), effectively all small ascospores are killed. The ability of N. tetrasperma to carry killer elements in cryptic condition suggests a possible role for Spore killers in the origin of pseudohomothallism, with adoption of the four-spored mode restoring ascospore viability of crosses in which killing would otherwise occur. PMID:1834522

  16. Impaired cytotoxicity associated with defective natural killer cell differentiation in myelodysplastic syndromes

    PubMed Central

    Hejazi, Maryam; Manser, Angela R.; Fröbel, Julia; Kündgen, Andrea; Zhao, Xiaoyi; Schönberg, Kathrin; Germing, Ulrich; Haas, Rainer; Gattermann, Norbert; Uhrberg, Markus

    2015-01-01

    Natural killer cells are well known to mediate anti-leukemic responses in myeloid leukemia but their role in myelodysplastic syndromes is not well understood. Here, in a cohort of newly diagnosed patients (n=75), widespread structural and functional natural killer cell defects were identified. One subgroup of patients (13%) had a selective deficiency of peripheral natural killer cells (count <10/mm3 blood) with normal frequencies of T and natural killer-like T cells. Natural killer cell-deficient patients were predominantly found in high-risk subgroups and deficiency of these cells was significantly associated with poor prognosis. In the second subgroup, comprising the majority of patients (76%), natural killer cells were present but exhibited poor cytotoxicity. The defect was strongly associated with reduced levels of perforin and granzyme B. Notably, natural killer cell function and arming of cytotoxic granules could be fully reconstituted by in vitro stimulation. Further phenotypic analysis of these patients revealed an immature natural killer cell compartment that was biased towards CD56bright cells. The residual CD56dim cells exhibited a significant increase of the unlicensed NKG2A−KIR− subset and a striking reduction in complexity of the repertoire of killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptors. Taken together, these results suggest that the widespread defects in natural killer cell function occurring in patients with myelodysplastic syndromes are mostly due to either unsuccessful or inefficient generation of mature, functionally competent natural killer cells, which might contribute to disease progression through impaired immune surveillance. PMID:25682594

  17. Impaired cytotoxicity associated with defective natural killer cell differentiation in myelodysplastic syndromes.

    PubMed

    Hejazi, Maryam; Manser, Angela R; Fröbel, Julia; Kündgen, Andrea; Zhao, Xiaoyi; Schönberg, Kathrin; Germing, Ulrich; Haas, Rainer; Gattermann, Norbert; Uhrberg, Markus

    2015-05-01

    Natural killer cells are well known to mediate anti-leukemic responses in myeloid leukemia but their role in myelodysplastic syndromes is not well understood. Here, in a cohort of newly diagnosed patients (n=75), widespread structural and functional natural killer cell defects were identified. One subgroup of patients (13%) had a selective deficiency of peripheral natural killer cells (count <10/mm(3) blood) with normal frequencies of T and natural killer-like T cells. Natural killer cell-deficient patients were predominantly found in high-risk subgroups and deficiency of these cells was significantly associated with poor prognosis. In the second subgroup, comprising the majority of patients (76%), natural killer cells were present but exhibited poor cytotoxicity. The defect was strongly associated with reduced levels of perforin and granzyme B. Notably, natural killer cell function and arming of cytotoxic granules could be fully reconstituted by in vitro stimulation. Further phenotypic analysis of these patients revealed an immature natural killer cell compartment that was biased towards CD56(bright) cells. The residual CD56(dim) cells exhibited a significant increase of the unlicensed NKG2A(-)KIR(-) subset and a striking reduction in complexity of the repertoire of killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptors. Taken together, these results suggest that the widespread defects in natural killer cell function occurring in patients with myelodysplastic syndromes are mostly due to either unsuccessful or inefficient generation of mature, functionally competent natural killer cells, which might contribute to disease progression through impaired immune surveillance. PMID:25682594

  18. Lewy Bodies: A Spectator or Salient Killer?

    PubMed

    Sian-Hulsmann, Jeswinder; Monoranu, Camelia; Strobel, S; Riederer, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Lewy bodies (LBs) are characteristic hallmarks of Parkinson's disease (PD). However, their role in the pathology of PD is not established yet. Are they primary events in the neurodegenerative process or only secondary phenomena? Are they signs of protecting neurons from toxicity or are they toxic per se? How are they are formed? Are LBs targets for therapeutic strategies? Addressing these questions may be of pivotal importance to unravel the basic mechanisms of neurodegeneration in PD. On the basis of current evidence, we intend to elucidate the possible role of LBs as triggers and/or markers of disease progression in PD. We present evidence for the morphogenesis of brain stem and cortical LBs, the role in neuronal cell death mechanisms, which seem to be correlated with the adhesion of LBs to and finally disruption of their inner neuronal membrane. Taken as such, LBs would be salient killers of nerve cells. However, they may also play a neuroprotective role in the early phases of neuronal pathology (LBs as a spectator), yet harmful to neuronal stability in later stages of LB development. Generation of LB pathology in the periphery (early subclinical Braak stage) might be due to reactive oxygen species (ROS) due to (chronic) bacteria-induced and/or otherwise intestinal inflammation, both leading to alpha-synuclein structural changes, oligomerization, seeding and propagation in a prion-like mechanism. If so, LB generation is a secondary process following ROS/inflammation pathology. Therapeutic implication based on LB pathology include drug development to inhibit protein misfolding, templating and transmission or vaccination against LBs, neuron regeneration strategies, anti-inflammatory and anti-biotic drugs as well as nutritional specialities to prevent intestine intoxications. In conclusion, evidence suggests LBs to be secondary hallmarks of PD pathology, induced by ROS/inflammation or other pathological triggers able to modify protein (alpha-synuclein) steric

  19. Whistle sequences in wild killer whales (Orcinus orca).

    PubMed

    Riesch, Rüdiger; Ford, John K B; Thomsen, Frank

    2008-09-01

    Combining different stereotyped vocal signals into specific sequences increases the range of information that can be transferred between individuals. The temporal emission pattern and the behavioral context of vocal sequences have been described in detail for a variety of birds and mammals. Yet, in cetaceans, the study of vocal sequences is just in its infancy. Here, we provide a detailed analysis of sequences of stereotyped whistles in killer whales off Vancouver Island, British Columbia. A total of 1140 whistle transitions in 192 whistle sequences recorded from resident killer whales were analyzed using common spectrographic analysis techniques. In addition to the stereotyped whistles described by Riesch et al., [(2006). "Stability and group specificity of stereotyped whistles in resident killer whales, Orcinus orca, off British Columbia," Anim. Behav. 71, 79-91.] We found a new and rare stereotyped whistle (W7) as well as two whistle elements, which are closely linked to whistle sequences: (1) stammers and (2) bridge elements. Furthermore, the frequency of occurrence of 12 different stereotyped whistle types within the sequences was not randomly distributed and the transition patterns between whistles were also nonrandom. Finally, whistle sequences were closely tied to close-range behavioral interactions (in particular among males). Hence, we conclude that whistle sequences in wild killer whales are complex signal series and propose that they are most likely emitted by single individuals. PMID:19045672

  20. AUGMENTATION OF MURINE NATURAL KILLER CELL ACTIVITY BY MANGANESE CHLORIDE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Natural Killer (NK) cell activity of spleen cells from male CBA/J mice was augmented by a single parenteral injection of MnCl2 administered 1 day prior to testing by in vitro and in vivo isotope release assays. Increased cytotoxic activity was observed in vitro against both NK-se...

  1. Life history evolution: what does a menopausal killer whale do?

    PubMed

    Whitehead, Hal

    2015-03-16

    Menopause evolved in humans and whales, presumably because older females can help their kin. But how do they help? New research shows that post-menopausal female killer whales lead foraging groups. This leadership is most significant when food is scarce. PMID:25784039

  2. IMMUNOSUPPRESSION OF PULMONARY NATURAL KILLER ACTIVITY BY EXPOSURE TO OZONE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ozone is an oxidant gas and an ubiquitous oxidant air pollutant with the potential to adversely affect pulmonary immune function with a consequent increase in disease susceptibility. ulmonary atural killer (NK) activity was measured in order to assess the pulmonary immunotoxicity...

  3. West Nile virus infection in killer whale, Texas, USA, 2007.

    PubMed

    St Leger, Judy; Wu, Guang; Anderson, Mark; Dalton, Les; Nilson, Erika; Wang, David

    2011-08-01

    In 2007, nonsuppurative encephalitis was identified in a killer whale at a Texas, USA, marine park. Panviral DNA microarray of brain tissue suggested West Nile virus (WNV); WNV was confirmed by reverse transcription PCR and sequencing. Immunohistochemistry demonstrated WNV antigen within neurons. WNV should be considered in cases of encephalitis in cetaceans. PMID:21801643

  4. EFFECT OF NICKEL AND MANGANESE ON NATURAL KILLER CELL ACTIVITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    A single intramuscular injection of NiCl2 causes a suppression of natural killer (NK) cell activity, while a single injection of MnCl2 enhances NK activity. When injected together Mn preempts the suppressive effect of Ni on NK activity.

  5. Genetic Analysis of the Pathogenic Molecular Sub-phenotype Interferon Alpha Identifies Multiple Novel Loci Involved in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

    PubMed Central

    Kariuki, Silvia N.; Ghodke-Puranik, Yogita; Dorschner, Jessica M.; Chrabot, Beverly S.; Kelly, Jennifer A.; Tsao, Betty P.; Kimberly, Robert P.; Alarcón-Riquelme, Marta E.; Jacob, Chaim O.; Criswell, Lindsey A.; Sivils, Kathy L.; Langefeld, Carl D.; Harley, John B.; Skol, Andrew D.; Niewold, Timothy B.

    2014-01-01

    Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) is a chronic autoimmune disorder characterized by inflammation of multiple organ systems and dysregulated interferon responses. SLE is both genetically and phenotypically heterogeneous, greatly reducing the power of case-control studies in SLE. Elevated circulating interferon alpha (IFN-α) is a stable, heritable trait in SLE, which has been implicated in primary disease pathogenesis. 40–50% of patients have high IFN-α, and high levels correspond with clinical differences. To study genetic heterogeneity in SLE, we performed a case-case study comparing patients with high vs. low IFN-α in over 1550 SLE cases, including GWAS and replication cohorts. In meta-analysis, the top associations in European ancestry were PRKG1 rs7897633 (PMeta=2.75 × 10−8) and PNP rs1049564 (PMeta=1.24 × 10−7). We also found evidence for cross-ancestral background associations with the ANKRD44 and PLEKHF2 loci. These loci have not been previously identified in case-control SLE genetic studies. Bioinformatic analyses implicated these loci functionally in dendritic cells and natural killer cells, both of which are involved in IFN-α production in SLE. As case-control studies of heterogeneous diseases reach a limit of feasibility with respect to subject number and detectable effect size, the study of informative pathogenic subphenotypes becomes an attractive strategy for genetic discovery in complex disease. PMID:25338677

  6. Natural and Sexual Selection on Many Loci

    PubMed Central

    Barton, N. H.; Turelli, M.

    1991-01-01

    A method is developed that describes the effects on an arbitrary number of autosomal loci of selection on haploid and diploid stages, of nonrandom mating between haploid individuals, and of recombination. We provide exact recursions for the dynamics of allele frequencies and linkage disequilibria (nonrandom associations of alleles across loci). When selection is weak relative to recombination, our recursions provide simple approximations for the linkage disequilibria among arbitrary combinations of loci. We show how previous models of sex-independent natural selection on diploids, assortative mating between haploids, and sexual selection on haploids can be analyzed in this framework. Using our weak-selection approximations, we derive new results concerning the coevolution of male traits and female preferences under natural and sexual selection. In particular, we provide general expressions for the intensity of linkage-disequilibrium induced selection experienced by loci that contribute to female preferences for specific male traits. Our general results support the previous observation that these indirect selection forces are so weak that they are unlikely to dominate the evolution of preference-producing loci. PMID:2016044

  7. GWAS identifies four novel eosinophilic esophagitis loci

    PubMed Central

    Sleiman, Patrick MA; Wang, Mei-Lun; Cianferoni, Antonella; Aceves, Seema; Gonsalves, Nirmala; Nadeau, Kari; Bredenoord, Albert J.; Furuta, Glenn T.; Spergel, Jonathan M.; Hakonarson, Hakon

    2014-01-01

    Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) is an allergic disorder characterized by infiltration of the esophagus with eosinophils. We had previously reported association of the TSLP/WDR36 locus with EoE. Here we report genome-wide significant associations at four additional loci; c11orf30 and STAT6, which have been previously associated with both atopic and autoimmune disease, and two EoE-specific loci, ANKRD27 that regulates the trafficking of melanogenic enzymes to epidermal melanocytes and CAPN14, that encodes a calpain whose expression is highly enriched in the esophagus. The identification of five EoE loci, not only expands our etiological understanding of the disease but may also represent new therapeutic targets to treat the most debilitating aspect of EoE, esophageal inflammation and remodeling. PMID:25407941

  8. Radiosensitivity of human natural killer cells: Binding and cytotoxic activities of natural killer cell subsets

    SciTech Connect

    Rana, R.; Vitale, M.; Mazzotti, G.; Manzoli, L.; Papa, S. )

    1990-10-01

    The sensitivity of human natural killer (NK) cell activities (both binding and killing) after exposure of peripheral blood mononuclear cells to different doses of gamma radiation was studied. A panel of monoclonal antibodies was used to identify the NK and T-lymphocyte subsets and to evaluate their radiosensitivity. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells were irradiated with low (2-6 Gy) and high (10-30 Gy) doses and NK cell binding and cytotoxic activity against K562 target cells were studied after 3 h and 48 h in culture. The primary damage to NK cell activity was identified at the postbinding level and affected mainly the lytic machinery. After 48 h culture postirradiation, an overall depression of cytotoxic activity was observed, but ionizing radiation produced either a selection of the more cytotoxic NK cell subsets, which therefore might be considered more resistant to radiation damage than the less cytotoxic NK cells, or a long-term stimulation of cytotoxic activity in surviving cells.

  9. Invariant natural killer T cells in hematopoietic stem cell transplantation: killer choice for natural suppression.

    PubMed

    Guan, P; Bassiri, H; Patel, N P; Nichols, K E; Das, R

    2016-05-01

    Invariant natural killer T cells (iNKTs) are innate-like lipid-reactive T lymphocytes that express an invariant T-cell receptor (TCR). Following engagement of the iTCR, iNKTs rapidly secrete copious amounts of Th1 and Th2 cytokines and promote the functions of several immune cells including NK, T, B and dendritic cells. Accordingly, iNKTs bridge the innate and adaptive immune responses and modulate susceptibility to autoimmunity, infection, allergy and cancer. Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is one of the most effective treatments for patients with hematologic malignancies. However, the beneficial graft versus leukemia (GvL) effect mediated by the conventional T cells contained within the allograft is often hampered by the concurrent occurrence of graft versus host disease (GvHD). Thus, developing strategies that can dissociate GvHD from GvL remain clinically challenging. Several preclinical and clinical studies demonstrate that iNKTs significantly attenuate GvHD without abrogating the GvL effect. Besides preserving the GvL activity of the donor graft, iNKTs themselves exert antitumor immune responses via direct and indirect mechanisms. Herein, we review the various mechanisms by which iNKTs provide antitumor immunity and discuss their roles in GvHD suppression. We also highlight the opportunities and obstacles in manipulating iNKTs for use in the cellular therapy of hematologic malignancies. PMID:26878658

  10. Sounds produced by Norwegian killer whales, Orcinus orca, during capture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Parijs, Sofie M.; Leyssen, Teo; Similä, Tiu

    2004-07-01

    To date very little is still known about the acoustic behavior of Norwegian killer whales, in particular that of individual whales. In this study a unique opportunity was presented to document the sounds produced by five captured killer whales in the Vestfjord area, northern Norway. Individuals produced 14 discrete and 7 compound calls. Two call types were used both by individuals 16178 and 23365 suggesting that they may belong to the same pod. Comparisons with calls documented in Strager (1993) showed that none of the call types used by the captured individuals were present. The lack of these calls in the available literature suggests that call variability within individuals is likely to be large. This short note adds to our knowledge of the vocal repertoire of this population and demonstrates the need for further studies to provide behavioural context to these sounds.

  11. Killer-sensitive coexistence in metapopulations of micro-organisms.

    PubMed Central

    Czárán, Tamás L; Hoekstra, Rolf F

    2003-01-01

    Many micro-organisms are known to produce efficient toxic substances against conspecifics and closely related species. The widespread coexistence of killer (toxin producer) and sensitive (non-producer) strains is a puzzle calling for a theoretical explanation. Based on stochastic cellular automaton simulations and the corresponding semi-analytical configuration-field approximation models, we suggest that metapopulation dynamics offers a plausible rationale for the maintenance of polymorphism in killer-sensitive systems. A slight trade-off between toxin production and population growth rate is sufficient to maintain the regional coexistence of toxic and sensitive strains, if toxic killing is a local phenomenon restricted to small habitat patches and local populations regularly go extinct and are renewed via recolonizations from neighbouring patches. Pattern formation on the regional scale does not play a decisive part in this mechanism, but the local manner of interactions is essential. PMID:12965028

  12. Phylogenomics of the killer whale indicates ecotype divergence in sympatry.

    PubMed

    Moura, A E; Kenny, J G; Chaudhuri, R R; Hughes, M A; Reisinger, R R; de Bruyn, P J N; Dahlheim, M E; Hall, N; Hoelzel, A R

    2015-01-01

    For many highly mobile species, the marine environment presents few obvious barriers to gene flow. Even so, there is considerable diversity within and among species, referred to by some as the 'marine speciation paradox'. The recent and diverse radiation of delphinid cetaceans (dolphins) represents a good example of this. Delphinids are capable of extensive dispersion and yet many show fine-scale genetic differentiation among populations. Proposed mechanisms include the division and isolation of populations based on habitat dependence and resource specializations, and habitat release or changing dispersal corridors during glacial cycles. Here we use a phylogenomic approach to investigate the origin of differentiated sympatric populations of killer whales (Orcinus orca). Killer whales show strong specialization on prey choice in populations of stable matrifocal social groups (ecotypes), associated with genetic and phenotypic differentiation. Our data suggest evolution in sympatry among populations of resource specialists. PMID:25052415

  13. Martyrdom redefined: self-destructive killers and vulnerable narcissism.

    PubMed

    Bobadilla, Leonardo

    2014-08-01

    Lankford shows that suicide terrorists have much in common with maladjusted persons who die by suicide. However, what differentiates suicidal killers from those who "only" commit suicide? A key element may be vulnerable narcissism. Narcissism has been simultaneously linked to interpersonal aggression, achievement, and depression. These traits may explain the paradoxical picture of a person who may appear "normal" in some aspects, and yet hate himself and others so intensely as to seek mutual destruction. PMID:25162842

  14. Interferon induces natural killer cell blastogenesis in vivo

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Biron, C. A.; Sonnenfeld, G.; Welsh, R. M.

    1984-01-01

    Interferon (IFN), types beta and gamma, and IFN inducers polyinosinic-polycytidylic acid and lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus, all stimulated the generation of blast-natural killer (NK) cells in mouse spleens, Blast-NK cells were characterized on the basis of size, 3H-thymidine uptake, and NK cell markers These data indicate that in addition to augmenting NK cell-mediated lysis, IFN may regulate NK cell proliferation in vivo.

  15. Can self-destructive killers be classified so easily?

    PubMed

    Egan, Vincent

    2014-08-01

    Lankford makes many useful points regarding the myths and shibboleths underlying our understanding of self-destructive killers and suicide bombers. He has collated an impressive data set on such offenders. However, his classification scheme is not built on sufficient evidence to support his proposed discrete categories of conventional, coerced, escapist, and indirect suicide terrorists. It would be straightforward to analyse the data, but it is unlikely that the resulting model would reflect that anticipated. PMID:25162843

  16. Toxicity of a plant based mosquito repellent/killer.

    PubMed

    Singh, Bhoopendra; Singh, Prakash Raj; Mohanty, Manoj Kumar

    2012-12-01

    The mission to make humans less attractive to mosquitoes has fuelled decades of scientific research on mosquito behaviour and control. The search for the perfect topical insect repellent/killer continues. This analysis was conducted to review and explore the scientific information on toxicity produced by the ingredients/contents of a herbal product. In this process of systemic review the following methodology was applied. By doing a MEDLINE search with key words of selected plants, plant based insect repellents/killers pertinent articles published in journals and authentic books were reviewed. The World Wide Web and the Extension Toxicity Network database (IPCS-ITOX) were also searched for toxicology data and other pertinent information. Repellents do not all share a single mode of action and surprisingly little is known about how repellents act on their target insects. Moreover, different mosquito species may react differently to the same repellent. After analysis of available data and information on the ingredient, of the product in relation to medicinal uses, acute and chronic toxicity of the selected medicinal plants, it can be concluded that the ingredients included in the herbal product can be used as active agents against mosquitoes. If the product which contains the powder of the above said plants is applied with care and safety, it is suitable fo use as a mosquito repellent/killer. PMID:23554562

  17. Experimental evidence for action imitation in killer whales (Orcinus orca).

    PubMed

    Abramson, José Z; Hernández-Lloreda, Victoria; Call, Josep; Colmenares, Fernando

    2013-01-01

    Comparative experimental studies of imitative learning have focused mainly on primates and birds. However, cetaceans are promising candidates to display imitative learning as they have evolved in socioecological settings that have selected for large brains, complex sociality, and coordinated predatory tactics. Here we tested imitative learning in killer whales, Orcinus orca. We used a 'do-as-other-does' paradigm in which 3 subjects witnessed a conspecific demonstrator's performance that included 15 familiar and 4 novel behaviours. The three subjects (1) learned the copy command signal 'Do that' very quickly, that is, 20 trials on average; (2) copied 100 % of the demonstrator's familiar and novel actions; (3) achieved full matches in the first attempt for 8-13 familiar behaviours (out of 15) and for the 2 novel behaviours (out of 2) in one subject; and (4) took no longer than 8 trials to accurately copy any familiar behaviour, and no longer than 16 trials to copy any novel behaviour. This study provides experimental evidence for body imitation, including production imitation, in killer whales that is comparable to that observed in dolphins tested under similar conditions. These findings suggest that imitative learning may underpin some of the group-specific traditions reported in killer whales in the field. PMID:22875725

  18. Divergence of a stereotyped call in northern resident killer whales.

    PubMed

    Grebner, Dawn M; Parks, Susan E; Bradley, David L; Miksis-Olds, Jennifer L; Capone, Dean E; Ford, John K B

    2011-02-01

    Northern resident killer whale pods (Orcinus orca) have distinctive stereotyped pulsed call repertoires that can be used to distinguish groups acoustically. Repertoires are generally stable, with the same call types comprising the repertoire of a given pod over a period of years to decades. Previous studies have shown that some discrete pulsed calls can be subdivided into variants or subtypes. This study suggests that new stereotyped calls may result from the gradual modification of existing call types through subtypes. Vocalizations of individuals and small groups of killer whales were collected using a bottom-mounted hydrophone array in Johnstone Strait, British Columbia in 2006 and 2007. Discriminant analysis of slope variations of a predominant call type, N4, revealed the presence of four distinct call subtypes. Similar to previous studies, there was a divergence of the N4 call between members of different matrilines of the same pod. However, this study reveals that individual killer whales produced multiple subtypes of the N4 call, indicating that divergence in the N4 call is not the result of individual differences, but rather may indicate the gradual evolution of a new stereotyped call. PMID:21361462

  19. Effect of spaceflight on natural killer cell activity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rykova, Marina P.; Sonnenfeld, Gerald; Lesniak, A. T.; Taylor, Gerald R.; Meshkov, Dimitrii O.; Mandel, Adrian D.; Medvedev, Andrei E.; Berry, Wallace D.; Fuchs, Boris B.; Konstantinova, Irina V.

    1992-01-01

    The effects of spaceflight on immune cell function were determined in rats flown on Cosmos 2044. Control groups included vivarium, synchronous, and antiorthostatically suspended rats. The ability of natural killer cells to lyse two different target cell lines was determined. Spleen and bone marrow cells obtained from flight rats showed significantly inhibited cytotoxicity for YAC-1 target cells compared with cells from synchronous control rats. This could have been due to exposure of the rats to microgravity. Antiorthostatic suspension did not affect the level of cytotoxicity from spleen cells of suspended rats for YAC-1 cells. On the other hand, cells from rats flown in space showed no significant differences from vivarium and synchronous control rats in cytotoxicity for K-562 target cells. Binding of natural killer cells to K-562 target cells was unaffected by spaceflight. Antiorthostatic suspension resulted in higher levels of cytotoxicity from spleen cells for Cr-51-labeled K-562 cells. The results indicate differential effects of spaceflight on function of natural killer cells. This shows that spaceflight has selective effects on the immune response.

  20. Offshore killer whale tracking using multiple hydrophone arrays.

    PubMed

    Gassmann, Martin; Henderson, E Elizabeth; Wiggins, Sean M; Roch, Marie A; Hildebrand, John A

    2013-11-01

    To study delphinid near surface movements and behavior, two L-shaped hydrophone arrays and one vertical hydrophone line array were deployed at shallow depths (<125 m) from the floating instrument platform R/P FLIP, moored northwest of San Clemente Island in the Southern California Bight. A three-dimensional propagation-model based passive acoustic tracking method was developed and used to track a group of five offshore killer whales (Orcinus orca) using their emitted clicks. In addition, killer whale pulsed calls and high-frequency modulated (HFM) signals were localized using other standard techniques. Based on these tracks sound source levels for the killer whales were estimated. The peak to peak source levels for echolocation clicks vary between 170-205 dB re 1 μPa @ 1 m, for HFM calls between 185-193 dB re 1 μPa @ 1 m, and for pulsed calls between 146-158 dB re 1 μPa @ 1 m. PMID:24180762

  1. Toxicity of a plant based mosquito repellent/killer

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Prakash Raj; Mohanty, Manoj Kumar

    2012-01-01

    The mission to make humans less attractive to mosquitoes has fuelled decades of scientific research on mosquito behaviour and control. The search for the perfect topical insect repellent/killer continues. This analysis was conducted to review and explore the scientific information on toxicity produced by the ingredients/contents of a herbal product. In this process of systemic review the following methodology was applied. By doing a MEDLINE search with key words of selected plants, plant based insect repellents/killers pertinent articles published in journals and authentic books were reviewed. The World Wide Web and the Extension Toxicity Network database (IPCS-ITOX) were also searched for toxicology data and other pertinent information. Repellents do not all share a single mode of action and surprisingly little is known about how repellents act on their target insects. Moreover, different mosquito species may react differently to the same repellent. After analysis of available data and information on the ingredient, of the product in relation to medicinal uses, acute and chronic toxicity of the selected medicinal plants, it can be concluded that the ingredients included in the herbal product can be used as active agents against mosquitoes. If the product which contains the powder of the above said plants is applied with care and safety, it is suitable fo use as a mosquito repellent/killer. PMID:23554562

  2. Present and Future of Allogeneic Natural Killer Cell Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Okjae; Jung, Mi Young; Hwang, Yu Kyeong; Shin, Eui-Cheol

    2015-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells are innate lymphocytes that are capable of eliminating tumor cells and are therefore used for cancer therapy. Although many early investigators used autologous NK cells, including lymphokine-activated killer cells, the clinical efficacies were not satisfactory. Meanwhile, human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-haploidentical hematopoietic stem cell transplantation revealed the antitumor effect of allogeneic NK cells, and HLA-haploidentical, killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptor ligand-mismatched allogeneic NK cells are currently used for many protocols requiring NK cells. Moreover, allogeneic NK cells from non-HLA-related healthy donors have been recently used in cancer therapy. The use of allogeneic NK cells from non-HLA-related healthy donors allows the selection of donor NK cells with higher flexibility and to prepare expanded, cryopreserved NK cells for instant administration without delay for ex vivo expansion. In cancer therapy with allogeneic NK cells, optimal matching of donors and recipients is important to maximize the efficacy of the therapy. In this review, we summarize the present state of allogeneic NK cell therapy and its future directions. PMID:26089823

  3. Opioid peptides mediate the suppressive effect of stress on natural killer cell cytotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Shavit, Y; Lewis, J W; Terman, G W; Gale, R P; Liebeskind, J C

    1984-01-13

    The cytotoxic activity of natural killer cells was investigated in rats subjected to one of two inescapable footshock stress paradigms, both of which induce analgesia, but only one via activation of opioid mechanisms. Splenic natural killer cell activity was suppressed by the opioid, but not the nonopioid, form of stress. This suppression was blocked by the opioid antagonist naltrexone. Similar suppression of natural killer activity was induced by high doses of morphine. These results suggest that endogenous opioid peptides mediate the suppressive effect of certain forms of stress on natural killer cell cytotoxicity. PMID:6691146

  4. Involvement of cell wall beta-glucan in the action of HM-1 killer toxin.

    PubMed

    Kasahara, S; Ben Inoue, S; Mio, T; Yamada, T; Nakajima, T; Ichishima, E; Furuichi, Y; Yamada, H

    1994-07-01

    HM-1 killer toxin secreted from Hansenula mrakii inhibits the growth of Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells by interfering with beta-1,3-glucan synthesis. We found that HM-1 killer toxin killed intact cells but not protoplasts. In addition, cells lacking the functional KRE6 allele (kre6 delta) became resistant to higher concentration of HM-1 killer toxin. As reported by Roemer and Bussey [(1991) Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 88 11295-11299], cells lacking functional KRE6 had a reduced level of the cell wall beta-1,6-glucan compared to that in cells harboring the normal KRE6. These results suggest that the cell wall beta-glucan is involved in the action of HM-1 killer toxin. Addition of HM-1 killer toxin with several kinds of oligosaccharides revealed that either beta-1,3- or beta-1,6-glucan blocked the cytocidal action of HM-1 killer toxin whereas alpha-1,4-glucan and chitin did not. Mannan also interfered with HM-1 killer toxin action, but this inhibitory effect was much weaker than that observed with beta-1,3- or beta-1,6-glucans. Thus, it appears that the cell wall beta-glucan interacts with HM-1 killer toxin, and that this toxin-beta-glucan commitment is required for the action of HM-1 killer toxin. PMID:8026578

  5. Destructive hostility: the Jeffrey Dahmer case. A psychiatric and forensic study of a serial killer.

    PubMed

    Jentzen, J; Palermo, G; Johnson, L T; Ho, K C; Stormo, K A; Teggatz, J

    1994-12-01

    We were involved as forensic experts in the case of the serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer. We discuss the scene and victim autopsy findings, with a brief consideration of the basic emotion of hostility. These findings support the thesis that at the basis of this serial killer's behavior were primary unconscious feelings of hate that he had channeled into a sadistic programmed destruction of 17 young men. The interview of the serial killer, the photographic scene documentation, and the autopsy findings stress the ambivalent homosexuality of the killer, his sexual sadism, his obsessive fetishism, and his possible cannibalism and necrophilia. PMID:7879770

  6. Radiation-induced mutation at minisatellite loci

    SciTech Connect

    Dubrova, Y.E. |; Nesterov, V.N.; Krouchinsky, N.G.

    1997-10-01

    We are studying the radiation-induced increase of mutation rate in minisatellite loci in mice and humans. Minisatellite mutations were scored by multilocus DNA fingerprint analysis in the progeny of {gamma}-irradiated and non-irradiated mice. The frequency of mutation in offspring of irradiated males was 1.7 higher that in the control group. Germline mutation at human minisatellite loci was studied among children born in heavily polluted areas of the Mogilev district of Belarus after the Chernobyl accident and in a control population. The frequency of mutation assayed both by DNA fingerprinting and by eight single locus probes was found to be two times higher in the exposed families than in the control group. Furthermore, mutation rate was correlated with the parental radiation dose for chronic exposure {sup 137}Cs, consistent with radiation-induction of germline mutation. The potential use of minisatellites in monitoring germline mutation in humans will be discussed.

  7. Characterization of microsatellite loci isolated in trumpeter swan (Cygnus buccinator)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    John, J. St; Ransler, F.A.; Quinn, T.W.; Oyler-McCance, S.J.

    2006-01-01

    Primers for 16 microsatellite loci were developed for the trumpeter swan (Cygnus buccinator), a species recovering from a recent population bottleneck. In a screen of 158 individuals, the 16 loci were found to have levels of variability ranging from two to seven alleles. No loci were found to be linked, although two loci repeatedly revealed significant departures from Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. Amplification in the closely related tundra swan (Cygnus columbianus) was successful for all except one locus. These microsatellite loci will be applicable for population genetic analyses and ultimately aid in management efforts. ?? 2006 The Authors.

  8. Fine mapping of eight psoriasis susceptibility loci.

    PubMed

    Das, Sayantan; Stuart, Philip E; Ding, Jun; Tejasvi, Trilokraj; Li, Yanming; Tsoi, Lam C; Chandran, Vinod; Fischer, Judith; Helms, Cynthia; Duffin, Kristina Callis; Voorhees, John J; Bowcock, Anne M; Krueger, Gerald G; Lathrop, G Mark; Nair, Rajan P; Rahman, Proton; Abecasis, Goncalo R; Gladman, Dafna; Elder, James T

    2015-06-01

    Previous studies have identified 41 independent genome-wide significant psoriasis susceptibility loci. After our first psoriasis genome-wide association study, we designed a custom genotyping array to fine-map eight genome-wide significant susceptibility loci known at that time (IL23R, IL13, IL12B, TNIP1, MHC, TNFAIP3, IL23A and RNF114) enabling genotyping of 2269 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the eight loci for 2699 psoriasis cases and 2107 unaffected controls of European ancestry. We imputed these data using the latest 1000 Genome reference haplotypes, which included both indels and SNPs, to increase the marker density of the eight loci to 49 239 genetic variants. Using stepwise conditional association analysis, we identified nine independent signals distributed across six of the eight loci. In the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) region, we detected three independent signals at rs114255771 (P = 2.94 × 10(-74)), rs6924962 (P = 3.21 × 10(-19)) and rs892666 (P = 1.11 × 10(-10)). Near IL12B we detected two independent signals at rs62377586 (P = 7.42 × 10(-16)) and rs918518 (P = 3.22 × 10(-11)). Only one signal was observed in each of the TNIP1 (rs17728338; P = 4.15 × 10(-13)), IL13 (rs1295685; P = 1.65 × 10(-7)), IL23A (rs61937678; P = 1.82 × 10(-7)) and TNFAIP3 (rs642627; P = 5.90 × 10(-7)) regions. We also imputed variants for eight HLA genes and found that SNP rs114255771 yielded a more significant association than any HLA allele or amino-acid residue. Further analysis revealed that the HLA-C*06-B*57 haplotype tagged by this SNP had a significantly higher odds ratio than other HLA-C*06-bearing haplotypes. The results demonstrate allelic heterogeneity at IL12B and identify a high-risk MHC class I haplotype, consistent with the existence of multiple psoriasis effectors in the MHC. PMID:25182136

  9. Fine mapping of eight psoriasis susceptibility loci

    PubMed Central

    Das, Sayantan; Stuart, Philip E; Ding, Jun; Tejasvi, Trilokraj; Li, Yanming; Tsoi, Lam C; Chandran, Vinod; Fischer, Judith; Helms, Cynthia; Duffin, Kristina Callis; Voorhees, John J; Bowcock, Anne M; Krueger, Gerald G; Lathrop, G Mark; Nair, Rajan P; Rahman, Proton; Abecasis, Goncalo R; Gladman, Dafna; Elder, James T

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies have identified 41 independent genome-wide significant psoriasis susceptibility loci. After our first psoriasis genome-wide association study, we designed a custom genotyping array to fine-map eight genome-wide significant susceptibility loci known at that time (IL23R, IL13, IL12B, TNIP1, MHC, TNFAIP3, IL23A and RNF114) enabling genotyping of 2269 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the eight loci for 2699 psoriasis cases and 2107 unaffected controls of European ancestry. We imputed these data using the latest 1000 Genome reference haplotypes, which included both indels and SNPs, to increase the marker density of the eight loci to 49 239 genetic variants. Using stepwise conditional association analysis, we identified nine independent signals distributed across six of the eight loci. In the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) region, we detected three independent signals at rs114255771 (P=2.94 × 10−74), rs6924962 (P=3.21 × 10−19) and rs892666 (P=1.11 × 10−10). Near IL12B we detected two independent signals at rs62377586 (P=7.42 × 10−16) and rs918518 (P=3.22 × 10−11). Only one signal was observed in each of the TNIP1 (rs17728338; P=4.15 × 10−13), IL13 (rs1295685; P=1.65 × 10−7), IL23A (rs61937678; P=1.82 × 10−7) and TNFAIP3 (rs642627; P=5.90 × 10−7) regions. We also imputed variants for eight HLA genes and found that SNP rs114255771 yielded a more significant association than any HLA allele or amino-acid residue. Further analysis revealed that the HLA-C*06-B*57 haplotype tagged by this SNP had a significantly higher odds ratio than other HLA-C*06-bearing haplotypes. The results demonstrate allelic heterogeneity at IL12B and identify a high-risk MHC class I haplotype, consistent with the existence of multiple psoriasis effectors in the MHC. PMID:25182136

  10. 50 CFR 226.206 - Critical habitat for the Southern Resident killer whale (Orcinus orca).

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Critical habitat for the Southern Resident... CRITICAL HABITAT § 226.206 Critical habitat for the Southern Resident killer whale (Orcinus orca). Critical habitat is designated for the Southern Resident killer whale as described in this section. The...

  11. 50 CFR 226.206 - Critical habitat for the Southern Resident killer whale (Orcinus orca).

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 7 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Critical habitat for the Southern Resident... CRITICAL HABITAT § 226.206 Critical habitat for the Southern Resident killer whale (Orcinus orca). Critical habitat is designated for the Southern Resident killer whale as described in this section. The...

  12. Two chromosomal genes required for killing expression in killer strains of Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Wickner, R B; Leibowitz, M J

    1976-03-25

    The killer character of yeast is determined by a 1.4 X 10(6) molecular weight double-stranded RNA plasmid and at least 12 chromosomal genes. Wild-type strains of yeast that carry this plasmid (killers) secret a toxin which is lethal only to strains not carrying this plasmid (sensitives).--We have isolated 28 independent recessive chromosomal mutants of a killer strain that have lost the ability to secrete an active toxin but remain resistant to the effects of the toxin and continue to carry the complete cytoplasmic killer genome. These mutants define two complementation groups, kex1 and kex2. Kex1 is located on chromosome VII between ade5 and lys5. Kex2 is located on chromosome XIV, but it does not show meiotic linkage to any gene previously located on this chromosome.--When the killer plasmid of kex1 or kex2 strains is eliminated by curing with heat or cycloheximide, the strains become sensitive to killing. The mutant phenotype reappears among the meiotic segregants in a cross with a normal killer. Thus, the kex phenotype does not require an alteration of the killer plasmid.--Kex1 and kex2 strains each contain near-normal levels of the 1.4 x 10(6) molecular weight double-stranded RNA, whose presence is correlated with the presence of the killer genome. PMID:773743

  13. 50 CFR 226.206 - Critical habitat for the Southern Resident killer whale (Orcinus orca).

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 10 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Critical habitat for the Southern... DESIGNATED CRITICAL HABITAT § 226.206 Critical habitat for the Southern Resident killer whale (Orcinus orca). Critical habitat is designated for the Southern Resident killer whale as described in this section....

  14. 50 CFR 226.206 - Critical habitat for the Southern Resident killer whale (Orcinus orca).

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 10 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Critical habitat for the Southern... DESIGNATED CRITICAL HABITAT § 226.206 Critical habitat for the Southern Resident killer whale (Orcinus orca). Critical habitat is designated for the Southern Resident killer whale as described in this section....

  15. Antigen-Addicted T Cell Reserves Trickle Charge the Frontline Killers.

    PubMed

    Kalia, Vandana; Sarkar, Surojit

    2016-07-19

    Highly active killer T cells mediate a stable standoff during controlled persistent infections. In this issue of Immunity, Robey and colleagues describe a unique antigen-addicted T cell population bearing characteristics of both effector and memory CD8(+) T cells that provides a continuous supply of potent killer T cells to curb Toxoplasma gondii growth during latency. PMID:27438762

  16. One-Year Prediction of Pain Killer Use among At-Risk Older Teens and Emerging Adults

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sussman, Steve; Rohrbach, Louise A.; Spruijt-Metz, Donna; Barnett, Elizabeth; Lisha, Nadra; Sun, Ping

    2012-01-01

    The leading substance of misuse among teens after tobacco, alcohol, and marijuana is the use of pain killers. Very few longitudinal studies on prediction of pain killer use have been conducted among teens. This study examined the 1-year prediction of self-reported last 30-day pain killer use controlling for baseline 30-day painkiller use among…

  17. Killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptor gene association with cryptorchidism.

    PubMed

    Niepiekło-Miniewska, Wanda; Kuśnierczyk, Piotr; Havrylyuk, Anna; Kamieniczna, Marzena; Nakonechnyy, Andrij; Chopyak, Valentyna; Kurpisz, Maciej

    2015-12-01

    Cryptorchidism is a condition where a testis persists in the abdominal cavity. Thus, due to elevated temperature we may expect induction of aberrant immune reactions depending on genetic constitution of individual. This may be reflected by development of anti-sperm antibodies (ASA) in cryptorchid males. Also, natural killer (NK) cells which belong to innate immunity may control adaptive immunity. Therefore, the gene system encoding polymorphic NK cell immunoglobulin receptors (KIRs) has been studied. 109 prepubertal boys with cryptorchidism and 136 ethnically matched young male donors were selected to study NK cell KIRs. DNA was isolated using automatic Maxwell(®) system from the peripheral venous blood drawn onto anticoagulant. Olerup SSP KIR Genotyping kit including Taq polymerase was used for detection of KIR genes. Human leukocyte antigen-C (HLA-C) groups, C1 and C2 were established using a Olerup SSP KIR HLA Ligand kit. KIR2DL2 (killer immunoglobulin-like receptor two-domain long 2) and KIR2DS2 (killer immunoglobulin-like receptor two-domain short 2) genes were less frequent in patients than in control individuals (corrected p values: 0.0110 and 0.0383, respectively). However, no significant differences were observed between ASA-positive and ASA-negative patients, or between bilateral or unilateral cryptorchidism. No association between KIR ligands C1 and C2, alone or together with KIR2DL2, was found. However, the results suggest that KIR2DL2+/KIR2DS2+ genotype may be, to some extent, protective against cryptorchidism. PMID:26679162

  18. Isolation and identification of normal killer cells from Syrian hamsters

    SciTech Connect

    Matveeva, V.A.; Klyuchareva, T.E.

    1986-09-01

    This paper gives data on isolation of normal killer cells from the blood and various tissues of Syrian hamsters in a Percoll density gradient and their identification on the basis of morphologic criteria and cytotoxic activity (CTA). CTA of the isolated cells was studied in the cytotoxic test with target cells of a human MOLT-4 thymoma cell labeled with /sup 51/Cr. Isolation of large granular lymphocytes from blood, spleen, and bone marrow of Syrian hamsters in Percoll density gradient is shown in the results of five experiments used for cells of each type.

  19. A killer micro attack on 3D neutron transport

    SciTech Connect

    Dorr, M.R.; Ferguson, J.M.

    1990-11-01

    We describe the deterministic solution of the neutron transport equation and the computation of the effective criticality of three-dimensional assemblies using the BBN TC2000 killer micros. We observe that the performance of our research code PTRAN running on 48 processors of the TC2000 is competitive with the partially vectorizable version running on a single Cray Y/MP processor. This performance scales well with the number of processors on real problems, including those that are not load balanced a priori. To obtain this performance, we explicitly specify and exploit data locality and data dependence using domain decomposition and dynamic job scheduling. 3 refs., 4 figs., 2 tabs.

  20. Organ-specific features of natural killer cells

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Fu-Dong; Ljunggren, Hans-Gustaf; La Cava, Antonio; Van Kaer, Luc

    2013-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells can be swiftly mobilized by danger signals and are among the earliest arrivals at target organs of disease. However, the role of NK cells in mounting inflammatory responses is often complex and sometimes paradoxical. Here, we examine the divergent phenotypic and functional features of NK cells, as deduced largely from experimental mouse models of pathophysiological responses in the liver, mucosal tissues, uterus, pancreas, joints and brain. Moreover, we discuss how organ-specific factors, the local microenvironment and unique cellular interactions may influence the organ-specific properties of NK cells. PMID:21941294

  1. A revised nomenclature for transcribed human endogenous retroviral loci

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Endogenous retroviruses (ERVs) and ERV-like sequences comprise 8% of the human genome. A hitherto unknown proportion of ERV loci are transcribed and thus contribute to the human transcriptome. A small proportion of these loci encode functional proteins. As the role of ERVs in normal and diseased biological processes is not yet established, transcribed ERV loci are of particular interest. As more transcribed ERV loci are likely to be identified in the near future, the development of a systematic nomenclature is important to ensure that all information on each locus can be easily retrieved. Results Here we present a revised nomenclature of transcribed human endogenous retroviral loci that sorts loci into groups based on Repbase classifications. Each symbol is of the format ERV + group symbol + unique number. Group symbols are based on a mixture of Repbase designations and well-supported symbols used in the literature. The presented guidelines will allow newly identified loci to be easily incorporated into the scheme. Conclusions The naming system will be employed by the HUGO Gene Nomenclature Committee for naming transcribed human ERV loci. We hope that the system will contribute to clarifying a certain aspect of a sometimes confusing nomenclature for human endogenous retroviruses. The presented system may also be employed for naming transcribed loci of human non-ERV repeat loci. PMID:21542922

  2. Expression quantitative trait loci: present and future

    PubMed Central

    Nica, Alexandra C.; Dermitzakis, Emmanouil T.

    2013-01-01

    The last few years have seen the development of large efforts for the analysis of genome function, especially in the context of genome variation. One of the most prominent directions has been the extensive set of studies on expression quantitative trait loci (eQTLs), namely, the discovery of genetic variants that explain variation in gene expression levels. Such studies have offered promise not just for the characterization of functional sequence variation but also for the understanding of basic processes of gene regulation and interpretation of genome-wide association studies. In this review, we discuss some of the key directions of eQTL research and its implications. PMID:23650636

  3. Disseminated mycosis in a killer whale (Orcinus orca).

    PubMed

    Abdo, Walied; Kawachi, Takeshi; Sakai, Hiroki; Fukushi, Hideto; Kano, Rui; Shibahara, Tomoyuki; Shirouzu, Hiroshi; Kakizoe, Yuko; Tuji, Hajime; Yanai, Tokuma

    2012-01-01

    Hematological findings in a female killer whale (Orcinus orca) undergoing rehabilitation after sudden severe anorexia revealed continuing increases in serum lactate dehydrogenase and aspartate aminotransferase activities as well as fibrinogen concentration. Serologic evidence of herpesvirus infection and skin vesicles were detected 2 weeks into the treatment regimen of antibiotics and corticosteroids. The whale showed signs of improvement after treatment with anti-herpesvirus drugs, but sudden severe anorexia reappeared, along with marked elevation of fibrinogen concentration that continued until the death. Postmortem examination revealed multiple light tan foci of necrosis in the skeletal and cardiac muscles, and lung consolidation. Microscopic findings indicated disseminated fungal granulomas in the skeletal and cardiac muscles, as well as myocarditis, mycotic embolic thromboarteritis of cardiac blood vessels, and bronchopneumonia with numerous typical Aspergillus-like fungi. Mucor-like structures in granulomas in the heart and skeletal muscle and Aspergillus-like fungi in the lungs were identified using periodic acid-Schiff, Gomori methenamine silver stain, and immunohistochemistry. The present case involves dual infection with Mucor and Aspergillus species in a killer whale with concurrent herpesvirus. PMID:22362957

  4. Stable isotopes of captive cetaceans (killer whales and bottlenose dolphins).

    PubMed

    Caut, Stéphane; Laran, Sophie; Garcia-Hartmann, Emmanuel; Das, Krishna

    2011-02-15

    There is currently a great deal of interest in using stable isotope methods to investigate diet, trophic level and migration in wild cetaceans. In order to correctly interpret the results stemming from these methods, it is crucial to understand how diet isotopic values are reflected in consumer tissues. In this study, we investigated patterns of isotopic discrimination between diet and blood constituents of two species of cetaceans (killer whale, Orcinus orca, and bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus) fed controlled diets over 308 and 312 days, respectively. Diet discrimination factors (Δ; mean ± s.d.) for plasma were estimated to Δ(13)C=2.3±0.6‰ and Δ(15)N=1.8±0.3‰, respectively, for both species and to Δ(13)C=2.7±0.3‰ and Δ(15)N=0.5±0.1‰ for red blood cells. Delipidation did not have a significant effect on carbon and nitrogen isotopic values of blood constituents, confirming that cetacean blood does not serve as a reservoir of lipids. In contrast, carbon isotopic values were higher in delipidated samples of blubber, liver and muscle from killer whales. The potential for conflict between fisheries and cetaceans has heightened the need for trophic information about these taxa. These results provide the first published stable isotope incorporation data for cetaceans, which are essential if conclusions are to be drawn on issues concerning trophic structures, carbon sources and diet reconstruction. PMID:21270301

  5. Natural killer T cells in health and disease

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Lan; Van Kaer, Luc

    2013-01-01

    Natural killer T (NKT) cells are a subset of T lymphocytes that share surface markers and functional characteristics with both conventional T lymphocytes and natural killer cells. Most NKT cells express a semiinvariant T cell receptor that reacts with glycolipid antigens presented by the major histocompatibility complex class I-related protein CD1d on the surface of antigen-presenting cells. NKT cells become activated during a variety of infections and inflammatory conditions, rapidly producing large amounts of immunomodulatory cytokines. NKT cells can influence the activation state and functional properties of multiple other cell types in the immune system and, thus, modulate immune responses against infectious agents, autoantigens, tumors, tissue grafts and allergens. One attractive aspect of NKT cells is that their immunomodulatory activities can be readily harnessed with cognate glycolipid antigens, such as the marine sponge-derived glycosphingolipid alpha-galactosylceramide. These properties of NKT cells are being exploited for therapeutic intervention to prevent or treat cancer, infections, and autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. PMID:21196373

  6. Cord Blood as a Source of Natural Killer Cells.

    PubMed

    Mehta, Rohtesh S; Shpall, Elizabeth J; Rezvani, Katayoun

    2015-01-01

    Cord blood (CB) offers several unique advantages as a graft source for hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). The risk of relapse and graft vs. host disease after cord blood transplantation (CBT) is lower than what is typically observed after other graft sources with a similar degree of human leukocyte antigen mismatch. Natural killer (NK) cells have a well-defined role in both innate and adaptive immunity and as the first lymphocytes to reconstitute after HSCT and CBT, and they play a significant role in protection against early relapse. In this article, we highlight the uses of CB NK cells in transplantation and adoptive immunotherapy. First, we will describe differences in the phenotype and functional characteristics of NK cells in CB as compared with peripheral blood. Then, we will review some of the obstacles we face in using resting CB NK cells for adoptive immunotherapy, and discuss methods to overcome them. We will review the current literature on killer-cell immunoglobulin-like receptors ligand mismatch and outcomes after CBT. Finally, we will touch on current strategies for the use of CB NK cells in cellular immunotherapy. PMID:26779484

  7. Immunosuppression of pulmonary natural killer activity by exposure to ozone

    SciTech Connect

    Burleson, G.R.; Keyes, L.L.; Stutzman, J.D. )

    1989-01-01

    Ozone is an oxidant gas and an ubiquitous oxidant air pollutant with the potential to adversely affect pulmonary immune function with a consequent increase in disease susceptibility. Pulmonary natural killer (NK) activity was measured in order to assess the pulmonary immunotoxicity of continuous ozone exposure. Continuous ozone exposures at 1.0 ppm were performed for 23.5 hours per day for either 1, 5, 7, or 10 consecutive days. Pulmonary immune function was assessed by measuring natural killer (NK) activity from whole-lung homogenates of male Fischer-344 rats. Results of this study indicated that continuous ozone exposure for 1, 5, or 7 days resulted in a significant decrease in pulmonary NK activity. This suppressed pulmonary NK activity returned to control levels after continuous exposure to ozone for 10 days. The suppressed pulmonary NK response was thus attenuated and returned to normal values in the continued presence of ozone gas. This attenuation process is dynamic, complex, and doubtless involves several cell types and/or products of these cells. Pulmonary NK activity was also suppressed at 0.5 ppm ozone, but not at 0.1 ppm ozone, following 23.5 hours of exposure. NK activity is important for defense against viral, bacterial, and neoplastic disease. The depressed NK activity resulting from continuous ozone exposure could therefore result in a compromised ability to defend against pulmonary diseases.

  8. Energy Security: From Deal Killers to Game Changers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cooke, Charlie

    2010-03-01

    Five energy security ``deal killers" are identified: 1) Global warming and CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion; 2) Intermittent energy sources (wind, solar) and the presence and stability of the grid; 3) Penetration of plant defenses to produce transportation fuels from biomass; 4) Mimicking nature: artificial photosynthesis for solar energy to fuels; and 5) Spent fuel from nuclear power reactors. Transformational basic research is required to successfully change the ground rules, to transform these ``deal killers" into ``game changers." T hey are: 1) Offsetting carbon capture and storage costs through enhanced oil recovery and methane generation from high temperature geothermal saline aquifers; 2) Electrical energy storage, through batteries and super-capacitors; 3) Genetic modification of plant cell walls, and catalytic methods for transforming plant sugars into fuels; 4) Separation of solar-induced electrons from holes, and catalysis to produce fuels; and 5) Closing the nuclear fuel cycle. Basic research can revolutionize our approach to carbon-free energy by enhancing nature to achieve energy security.

  9. Echolocation signals of foraging killer whales (Orcinus orca)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Au, Whitlow W. L.; Ford, John K. B.; Allman, Kelly A.

    2002-05-01

    Fish eating resident killer whales that frequent the coastal waters of Vancouver Island, Canada have a strong preference for chinook salmon. The whales in Johnston Strait often forage along the steep cliffs that extend into the water, echolocating their prey. Echolocation signals were measured with a four hydrophone symmetrical star array and the signals were simultaneous digitized at a sample rate of 500 kHz using a lunch-box PC. A portable VCR recorded the images from an underwater camera located close to the array center. Only signals emanated from close to the beam axis (1185 total) were chosen for a detailed analysis. Killer whales project very broad band echolocation signals (Q 1.3 to 1.5) that tend to have a bimodal frequency structure. Ninety seven percent of the signals had center frequencies between 45 and 80 kHz with a band-width between 35 and 50 kHz. The peak-to-peak source level of the echolocation signal decreased as a function of the one way transmission loss to the array. Source levels varied between 200 and 225 dB re 1 μPa. Using a model of target strength for chinook salmons, the echo levels from the echolocation signals are estimated for different ranges between whale and salmon.

  10. Cord Blood as a Source of Natural Killer Cells

    PubMed Central

    Mehta, Rohtesh S.; Shpall, Elizabeth J.; Rezvani, Katayoun

    2016-01-01

    Cord blood (CB) offers several unique advantages as a graft source for hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). The risk of relapse and graft vs. host disease after cord blood transplantation (CBT) is lower than what is typically observed after other graft sources with a similar degree of human leukocyte antigen mismatch. Natural killer (NK) cells have a well-defined role in both innate and adaptive immunity and as the first lymphocytes to reconstitute after HSCT and CBT, and they play a significant role in protection against early relapse. In this article, we highlight the uses of CB NK cells in transplantation and adoptive immunotherapy. First, we will describe differences in the phenotype and functional characteristics of NK cells in CB as compared with peripheral blood. Then, we will review some of the obstacles we face in using resting CB NK cells for adoptive immunotherapy, and discuss methods to overcome them. We will review the current literature on killer-cell immunoglobulin-like receptors ligand mismatch and outcomes after CBT. Finally, we will touch on current strategies for the use of CB NK cells in cellular immunotherapy. PMID:26779484

  11. Use of natural killer cells as immunotherapy for leukaemia

    PubMed Central

    Grzywacz, Bartosz; Miller, Jeffrey S.; Verneris, Michael R.

    2008-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells potentially play a significant role in eradicating residual disease following allogeneic haematopoietic cell transplantation, and have been explored as tools for adoptive immunotherapy for chemotherapy-refractory patients. NK cell cytotoxicity is modulated by multiple activating and inhibitory receptors that maintain a balance between self-tolerance and providing surveillance against pathogens and malignant transformation. The functional characteristics of NK cells are dictated by the strength of inhibitory receptor signalling. Major histocompatibility complex (MHC)-specific inhibitory receptor acquisition occurs sequentially during NK cell development, and is determined by the nature of immunological reconstitution after allogeneic haematopoietic cell transplantation. Polymorphisms of inhibitory receptors [killer immunoglobulin-like receptors (KIRs)] and their ligands (MHC) contribute to interindividual variability. As a result, the functional NK cell repertoire of individual donors has variable potential for graft-vs-leukaemia reactions. Models predicting NK cell alloreactivity, including KIR ligand mismatch and missing KIR ligand strategies, are discussed as algorithms for optimal NK cell donor selection. Future modifications to improve NK cell adoptive immunotherapy by means of increasing target recognition and reducing inhibitory signalling are being explored. PMID:18790450

  12. Quantitative Trait Loci for Murine Growth

    PubMed Central

    Cheverud, J. M.; Routman, E. J.; Duarte, FAM.; van-Swinderen, B.; Cothran, K.; Perel, C.

    1996-01-01

    Body size is an archetypal quantitative trait with variation due to the segregation of many gene loci, each of relatively minor effect, and the environment. We examine the effects of quantitative trait loci (QTLs) on age-specific body weights and growth in the F(2) intercross of the LG/J and SM/J strains of inbred mice. Weekly weights (1-10 wk) and 75 microsatellite genotypes were obtained for 535 mice. Interval mapping was used to locate and measure the genotypic effects of QTLs on body weight and growth. QTL effects were detected on 16 of the 19 autosomes with several chromosomes carrying more than one QTL. The number of QTLs for age-specific weights varied from seven at 1 week to 17 at 10 wk. The QTLs were each of relatively minor, subequal effect. QTLs affecting early and late growth were generally distinct, mapping to different chromosomal locations indicating separate genetic and physiological systems for early and later murine growth. PMID:8846907

  13. Killer toxin from several food-derived Debaryomyces hansenii strains effective against pathogenic Candida yeasts.

    PubMed

    Banjara, Nabaraj; Nickerson, Kenneth W; Suhr, Mallory J; Hallen-Adams, Heather E

    2016-04-01

    Candida yeasts are the dominant fungi in the healthy human microbiome, but are well-known for causing disease following a variety of perturbations. Evaluation of fungal populations from the healthy human gut revealed a significant negative correlation between the foodborne yeast, Debaryomyces hansenii, and Candida species. D. hansenii is reported to produce killer toxins (mycocins) effective against other yeast species. In order to better understand this phenomenon, a collection of 42 D. hansenii isolates was obtained from 22 cheeses and evaluated for killer activity against Candida albicans and Candida tropicalis over a range of temperatures and pH values. Twenty three strains demonstrated killer activity against both C. albicans and C. tropicalis, which was pH- and temperature-dependent, with no killer activity observed for any strain at pH6.5 or higher, or at ≥35°C (physiological conditions in the human gastrointestinal tract). A cell-free mycocin preparation showed transient killer activity against C. albicans at 35°C and a cheese sample containing a killer D. hansenii strain demonstrated sustained killer activity against both C. albicans and C. tropicalis. Together, these observations raise the possibility that D. hansenii could influence Candida populations in the gut. PMID:26828815

  14. Low-frequency signals produced by Northeast Atlantic killer whales (Orcinus orca).

    PubMed

    Samarra, Filipa I P; Deecke, Volker B; Miller, Patrick J O

    2016-03-01

    Killer whale acoustic behavior has been extensively investigated; however, most studies have focused on pulsed calls and whistles. This study reports the production of low-frequency signals by killer whales at frequencies below 300 Hz. Recordings were made in Iceland and Norway when killer whales were observed feeding on herring and no other marine mammal species were nearby. Low-frequency sounds were identified in Iceland and ranged in duration between 0.14 and 2.77 s and in frequency between 50 and 270 Hz, well below the previously reported lower limit for killer whale tonal sounds of 500 Hz. Low-frequency sounds appeared to be produced close in time to tail slaps, which are indicative of feeding attempts, suggesting that these sounds may be related to a feeding context. However, their precise function is unknown, and they could be the by-product of a non-vocal behavior rather than a vocal signal deliberately produced by the whales. Although killer whales in Norway exhibit similar feeding behavior, this sound has not been detected in recordings from Norway to date. This study suggests that, like other delphinids, killer whales produce low-frequency sounds, but further studies will be required to understand whether similar sounds exist in other killer whale populations. PMID:27036251

  15. Positioning Effects of KillerRed inside of Cells correlate with DNA Strand Breaks after Activation with Visible Light

    PubMed Central

    Waldeck, Waldemar; Mueller, Gabriele; Wiessler, Manfred; Tóth, Katalin; Braun, Klaus

    2011-01-01

    Fluorescent proteins (FPs) are established tools for new applications, not-restricted to the cell biological research. They could also be ideal in surgery enhancing the precision to differentiate between the target tissue and the surrounding healthy tissue. FPs like the KillerRed (KRED), used here, can be activated by excitation with visible day-light for emitting active electrons which produce reactive oxygen species (ROS) resulting in photokilling processes. It is a given that the extent of the KRED's cell toxicity depends on its subcellular localization. Evidences are documented that the nuclear lamina as well as especially the chromatin are critical targets for KRED-mediated ROS-based DNA damaging. Here we investigated the damaging effects of the KRED protein fused to the nuclear lamina and to the histone H2A DNA-binding protein. We detected a frequency of DNA strand breaks, dependent first on the illumination time, and second on the spatial distance between the localization at the chromatin and the site of ROS production. As a consequence we could identify defined DNA bands with 200, 400 and (600) bps as most prominent degradation products, presumably representing an internucleosomal DNA cleavage induced by KRED. These findings are not restricted to the detection of programmed cell death processes in the therapeutic field like PDT, but they can also contribute to a better understanding of the structure-function relations in the epigenomic world. PMID:21278894

  16. [Nasal type natural killer/T cell lymphoma: case series and literature review].

    PubMed

    Düzlü, Mehmet; Ant, Ayça; Tutar, Hakan; Karamert, Recep; Şahin, Melih; Sayar, Erolcan; Cesur, Nesibe

    2016-01-01

    Nasal type natural killer/T-cell lymphoma is a rare type of extranodal non-Hodgkin lymphoma which originates from nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses. Exact diagnosis of nasal natural killer/T-cell lymphoma, which is a rapidly progressive clinical condition, may be established by immunohistochemical analysis on biopsy material after clinical suspicion. In this article, we report four cases of nasal natural killer/T-cell lymphoma who were followed-up in our clinic and discuss the diagnosis and treatment of the disease in light of the literature data. PMID:27405082

  17. Speaking up: Killer whales (Orcinus orca) increase their call amplitude in response to vessel noise.

    PubMed

    Holt, Marla M; Noren, Dawn P; Veirs, Val; Emmons, Candice K; Veirs, Scott

    2009-01-01

    This study investigated the effects of anthropogenic sound exposure on the vocal behavior of free-ranging killer whales. Endangered Southern Resident killer whales inhabit areas including the urban coastal waters of Puget Sound near Seattle, WA, where anthropogenic sounds are ubiquitous, particularly those from motorized vessels. A calibrated recording system was used to measure killer whale call source levels and background noise levels (1-40 kHz). Results show that whales increased their call amplitude by 1 dB for every 1 dB increase in background noise levels. Furthermore, nearby vessel counts were positively correlated with these observed background noise levels. PMID:19173379

  18. Ex vivo generated natural killer cells acquire typical natural killer receptors and display a cytotoxic gene expression profile similar to peripheral blood natural killer cells.

    PubMed

    Lehmann, Dorit; Spanholtz, Jan; Osl, Markus; Tordoir, Marleen; Lipnik, Karoline; Bilban, Martin; Schlechta, Bernhard; Dolstra, Harry; Hofer, Erhard

    2012-11-01

    Ex vivo differentiation systems of natural killer (NK) cells from CD34+ hematopoietic stem cells are of potential importance for adjuvant immunotherapy of cancer. Here, we analyzed ex vivo differentiation of NK cells from cord blood-derived CD34+ stem cells by gene expression profiling, real-time RT-PCR, flow cytometry, and functional analysis. Additionally, we compared the identified characteristics to peripheral blood (PB) CD56(bright) and CD56(dim) NK cells. The data show sequential expression of CD56 and the CD94 and NKG2 receptor chains during ex vivo NK cell development, resulting finally in the expression of a range of genes with partial characteristics of CD56(bright) and CD56(dim) NK cells from PB. Expression of characteristic NK cell receptors and cytotoxic genes was mainly found within the predominant ex vivo generated population of NKG2A+ NK cells, indicating the importance of NKG2A expression during NK cell differentiation and maturation. Furthermore, despite distinct phenotypic characteristics, the detailed analysis of cytolytic genes expressed within the ex vivo differentiated NK cells revealed a pattern close to CD56(dim) NK cells. In line with this finding, ex vivo generated NK cells displayed potent cytotoxicity. This supports that the ex vivo differentiation system faithfully reproduces major steps of the differentiation of NK cells from their progenitors, constitutes an excellent model to study NK cell differentiation, and is valuable to generate large-scale NK cells appropriate for immunotherapy. PMID:22571679

  19. Cytotoxic and natural killer cell stimulatory constituents of Phyllanthus songboiensis

    PubMed Central

    Ren, Yulin; Yuan, Chunhua; Deng, Youcai; Kanagasabai, Ragu; Ninh, Tran Ngoc; Tu, Vuong Tan; Chai, Hee-Byung; Soejarto, Djaja D.; Fuchs, James R.; Yalowich, Jack C.; Yu, Jianhua; Kinghorn, A. Douglas

    2014-01-01

    A dichapetalin-type triterpenoid and a dibenzylbutyrolactone-type lignan, together with five known lignans, a known aromatic diterpenoid, and a known acylated phytosterol, were isolated from the aerial parts of Phyllanthus songboiensis, collected in Vietnam. Their structures were determined by interpretation of the spectroscopic data, and the inhibitory activity toward the HT-29 human colon cancer cells of all isolates was evaluated by a cytotoxicity assay. The known arylnaphthalene lignan, (+)-acutissimalignan A, was highly cytotoxic toward HT-29 cells, with an IC50 value of 19 nM, but this compound was inactive as a DNA topoisomerase IIα (topo IIα) poison. The known phytosterol, (−)-β-sitosterol-3-O-β-D-(6-O-palmitoyl)glucopyranoside, was found to stimulate natural killer (NK) cells at a concentration of 10 μM in the presence of interleukin 12 (IL-12). PMID:25596805

  20. Production of EUV mask blanks with low killer defects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Antohe, Alin O.; Kearney, Patrick; Godwin, Milton; He, Long; John Kadaksham, Arun; Goodwin, Frank; Weaver, Al; Hayes, Alan; Trigg, Steve

    2014-04-01

    For full commercialization, extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUVL) technology requires the availability of EUV mask blanks that are free of defects. This remains one of the main impediments to the implementation of EUV at the 22 nm node and beyond. Consensus is building that a few small defects can be mitigated during mask patterning, but defects over 100 nm (SiO2 equivalent) in size are considered potential "killer" defects or defects large enough that the mask blank would not be usable. The current defect performance of the ion beam sputter deposition (IBD) tool will be discussed and the progress achieved to date in the reduction of large size defects will be summarized, including a description of the main sources of defects and their composition.

  1. Prolonged treatment response in aggressive natural killer cell leukemia.

    PubMed

    Osuji, N; Matutes, E; Morilla, A; Del Giudice, I; Wotherspoon, A; Catovsky, D

    2005-05-01

    We describe a case of natural killer (NK) cell leukemia with acute presentation, systemic symptoms and hepatosplenomegaly. The uniform and aberrant phenotype of NK cells with infiltration of bone marrow and spleen was in keeping with a malignant diagnosis. Aggressive presentation was demonstrated by marked constitutional symptoms and significant tumor burden (liver, spleen, blood, bone marrow). The subsequent clinical course has been indolent, but this may have been influenced by treatment. Treatment consisted sequentially of splenectomy, intravenous pentostatin and the combination of cyclosporine A and recombinant human erythropoietin and has resulted in survival of over 48 months. We discuss the difficulties in the diagnosis of this condition, explore possible causes of cytopenia(s), and highlight the role of immunosuppression in controlling disease manifestations in large granular lymphocyte proliferative disorders. PMID:16019515

  2. Novel targets for natural killer/T-cell lymphoma immunotherapy.

    PubMed

    Kumai, Takumi; Kobayashi, Hiroya; Harabuchi, Yasuaki

    2016-01-01

    Extranodal natural killer/T-cell lymphoma, nasal type (NKTL) is a rare but highly aggressive Epstein-Barr virus-related malignancy, which mainly occurs in nasopharyngeal and nasal/paranasal areas. In addition to its high prevalence in Asian, Central American and South American populations, its incidence rate has been gradually increasing in Western countries. The current mainstay of treatment is a combination of multiple chemotherapies and irradiation. Although chemoradiotherapy can cure NKTL, it often causes severe and fatal adverse events. Because a growing body of evidence suggests that immunotherapy is effective against hematological malignancies, this treatment could provide an alternative to chemoradiotherapy for treatment of NKTL. In this review, we focus on how recent findings could be used to develop efficient immunotherapies against NKTL. PMID:26642249

  3. A killer micro attack on 3D neutron transport

    SciTech Connect

    Dorr, M.R.; Ferguson, J.M.

    1990-11-16

    In this paper, we describe the deterministic solution of the neutron transport equation and the computation of the effective criticality of three-dimensional assemblies using the BBN TC2000 killer micros. We observe that the performance of our research code PTRAN running on 48 processors of the TC2000 is competitive with the partially vectorizable version running on a single Cray Y/MP processor. This performance scales well with the number of processors on real problems, including those that are not load balanced a priori. To obtain this performance, we explicitly specify and exploit data locality and data dependence using domain decomposition and dynamic job scheduling. From the results obtained here, it appears that, at least for this application, a production machine based on the TC2000 architecture with more powerful processors and a commensurate increase in switch speed could yield a significant gain in our design capability. 2 refs., 5 figs., 2 tabs.

  4. Energy Security: From Deal Killers to Game Changers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orbach, Raymond L.

    2010-03-01

    Five ``deal killers'' for achieving energy security will be addressed: 1) Global warming and CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion, 2) Intermittent energy sources (wind, solar) and the presence and stability of the grid, 3) Penetration of plant defenses to produce transportation fuels from biomass, 4) Mimicking nature: artificial photosynthesis for solar energy-to-fuels, and 5) Spent fuel from nuclear power reactors. Basic research can lead to ``game changers'' for these five fields: 1) Carbon capture and storage through enhanced oil and gas recovery, 2) Electrical energy storage for base-load electricity through batteries and supercapacitors, 3) Genetic modification of the plant cell wall, and catalytic methods for conversion of plant sugars to fuels, 4) Separation of solar-induced electrons from holes, and catalysis to produce fuels, and 5) Closing the nuclear fuel cycle. The present state for each of these game changers will be summarized, and future research opportunities discussed.

  5. Vulnerability of a killer whale social network to disease outbreaks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guimarães, Paulo R., Jr.; de Menezes, Márcio Argollo; Baird, Robin W.; Lusseau, David; Guimarães, Paulo; Dos Reis, Sérgio F.

    2007-10-01

    Emerging infectious diseases are among the main threats to conservation of biological diversity. A crucial task facing epidemiologists is to predict the vulnerability of populations of endangered animals to disease outbreaks. In this context, the network structure of social interactions within animal populations may affect disease spreading. However, endangered animal populations are often small and to investigate the dynamics of small networks is a difficult task. Using network theory, we show that the social structure of an endangered population of mammal-eating killer whales is vulnerable to disease outbreaks. This feature was found to be a consequence of the combined effects of the topology and strength of social links among individuals. Our results uncover a serious challenge for conservation of the species and its ecosystem. In addition, this study shows that the network approach can be useful to study dynamical processes in very small networks.

  6. Circulating natural killer cells in retired asbestos cement workers.

    PubMed

    Froom, P; Lahat, N; Kristal-Boneh, E; Cohen, C; Lerman, Y; Ribak, J

    2000-01-01

    The effect of past exposure to asbestos on natural killer (NK) cell number and activity is uncertain. We measured NK cell number and activity in 1052 retired asbestos workers without symptomatic lung disease, lung cancer, or mesothelioma and with a long latency period from exposure; results were compared with those for 100 healthy age-matched controls. The exposed workers showed a decreased NK cell activity and increased NK cell number, yielding a 10.8 higher odds ratio for low NK activity per cell compared with controls (95% confidence interval 6.4 to 18.4), which was due to both a decrease in NK cell activity and an increase in NK cell number. Asbestos exposure of 10 years or more increased the risk of low NK activity per cell. We conclude that exposure to asbestos is associated with diminished effectiveness of NK cells and a concomitant increase in the number of NK circulating cells. PMID:10652684

  7. Endocytosis and Intracellular Trafficking of Human Natural Killer Cell Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Masilamani, Madhan; Peruzzi, Giovanna; Borrego, Francisco; Coligan, John E.

    2009-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells play a vital role in the defense against viral infections and tumor development. NK cell function is primarily regulated by the sum of signals from a broad array of activation and inhibitory receptors. Key to generating the input level of either activating or inhibitory signals is the maintenance of receptor expression levels on the cell surface. Although the mechanisms of endocytosis and trafficking for some cell surface receptors, such as transferrin receptor, and certain immune receptors, are very well known, that is not the situation for receptors expressed by NK cells. Recent studies have uncovered that endocytosis and trafficking routes characteristic for specific activation and inhibitory receptors can regulate the functional responses of NK cells. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge of receptor endocytosis and trafficking, and integrate this with our current understanding of NK cell receptor trafficking. PMID:19719476

  8. Operational Performance Analysis of Passive Acoustic Monitoring for Killer Whales

    SciTech Connect

    Matzner, Shari; Fu, Tao; Ren, Huiying; Deng, Zhiqun; Sun, Yannan; Carlson, Thomas J.

    2011-09-30

    For the planned tidal turbine site in Puget Sound, WA, the main concern is to protect Southern Resident Killer Whales (SRKW) due to their Endangered Species Act status. A passive acoustic monitoring system is proposed because the whales emit vocalizations that can be detected by a passive system. The algorithm for detection is implemented in two stages. The first stage is an energy detector designed to detect candidate signals. The second stage is a spectral classifier that is designed to reduce false alarms. The evaluation presented here of the detection algorithm incorporates behavioral models of the species of interest, environmental models of noise levels and potential false alarm sources to provide a realistic characterization of expected operational performance.

  9. Natural killer cells: walking three paths down memory lane.

    PubMed

    Min-Oo, Gundula; Kamimura, Yosuke; Hendricks, Deborah W; Nabekura, Tsukasa; Lanier, Lewis L

    2013-06-01

    Immunological memory has traditionally been regarded as a unique feature of the adaptive immune response, mediated in an antigen-specific manner by T and B lymphocytes. All other hematopoietic cells, including natural killer (NK) cells, are classified as innate immune cells, which have been considered short-lived but can respond rapidly against pathogens in a manner not thought to be driven by antigen. Interestingly, NK cells have recently been shown to survive long term after antigen exposure and subsequently mediate antigen-specific recall responses. In this review, we address the similarities between, and the controversies surrounding, three major viewpoints of NK memory that have arisen from these recent studies: (i) mouse cytomegalovirus (MCMV)-induced memory; (ii) cytokine-induced memory; and (iii) liver-restricted memory cells. PMID:23499559

  10. The role of natural killer cells in viral infections.

    PubMed

    See, D M; Khemka, P; Sahl, L; Bui, T; Tilles, J G

    1997-09-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells are important effectors for the lysis of both neoplastic and virus-infected cells. Lectin-like receptors on human NK cells, such as NKR-PIA and CD94, bind to target cell carbohydrate ligands and initiate the lytic process. In addition, P58 and P70 bind to major histocompatibility class I antigens on targets and mediate negative signals. Models using NK cell-deficient mice have proven useful in elaborating the role of NK cells in the immune defence against multiple viral agents. In addition, studies in humans have suggested a vital role of NK cells in the host defence against human immunodeficiency virus, herpesviruses, hepatitis B and C and other viruses. Several genetic disorders, chronic illnesses and infections have been associated with decreased NK function. PMID:9315107

  11. Killer B lymphocytes: the evidence and the potential

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Immune regulation plays a critical role in controlling potentially dangerous inflammation and maintaining health. The Fas ligand/Fas receptor axis has been studied extensively as a mechanism of killing T cells and other cells during infections, autoimmunity, and cancer. FasL expression has been primarily attributed to activated T cells and NK cells. Evidence has emerged that B lymphocytes can express FasL and other death-inducing ligands, and can mediate cell death under many circumstances. Among B cell subsets, the expression of both Fas ligand and IL-10 is highest on the CD5+ B cell population, suggesting that CD5+ B cells may have a specialized regulatory function. The relevance of killer B cells to normal immune regulation, disease pathogenesis, and inflammation is discussed. PMID:19262989

  12. Quantitation of natural killer cell precursors in man.

    PubMed

    Gharehbaghian, Ahmad; Haque, K M Gausul; Truman, Carol; Newman, John; Bradley, Benjamin A

    2002-02-01

    A technique was developed to measure the frequency of natural killer cell precursors (NKpf) in human peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) samples. Functional maturity of NK cells was reflected in their ability to lyse target cells from the K562 cell line. During the development of the technique, venous blood was taken from one healthy adult and assayed at different times to avoid individual variation. The technique was based on the principle of limiting dilution analysis. The NKpf assay was set up with a range of cell dilutions from 40,000 to 625 per 100 microl/well in 96-well culture plates. At the end of the culture period, the K562 cell line labelled with europium (Eu-K562) was added and the Eu-release was measured in culture supernatants using time-resolved fluorometry. The NKpf value differed between individuals and was influenced by the length of time in culture, being maximal at day 5. Maturation of NKp required the continuous presence of recombinant interleukin 2 (rIL-2), or rIL-15, both being equally effective. In the absence of cytokines, the functional NK cells declined rapidly beyond 24 h in culture. Irradiated allogeneic cells appeared to substitute in part for cytokines, but the numbers of allo-activated NKpf were lower than those observed when allo-activated NKpf were cultured with rIL-2. This suggested selective activation by the allogeneic stimulus of subsets of NKp or rIL-2-rescue of NKp subsets destined for apoptotic cell death. Alternatively, the increased frequency could have been attributable to activation of precursors of natural killer-T cells (NK-Tp). This assay is suitable for estimating the total number of precursors of functional NK cells in the blood of patients. PMID:11792377

  13. Killers in the Brain - Essays in Science and Technology from the Royal Institution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Day, Peter

    1999-09-01

    This fascinating and diverse selection of essays from the Royal Institution provides a glimpse of some of the most current and exciting scientific research, ranging from the global increase in asthma and allergies to neurodegenerative diseases known as "brain killers."

  14. Hepatitis C Now Leading Infectious Disease Killer in U.S.

    MedlinePlus

    ... nih.gov/medlineplus/news/fullstory_158651.html Hepatitis C Now Leading Infectious Disease Killer in U.S. CDC ... 4, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- The number of hepatitis C-linked deaths in the United States reached a ...

  15. On the communicative significance of whistles in wild killer whales (Orcinus orca)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomsen, Frank; Franck, Dierk; Ford, John

    2002-08-01

    Killer whales (Orcinus orca) use pulsed calls and whistles in underwater communication. Unlike pulsed calls, whistles have received little study and thus their function is poorly known. In this study, whistle activities of groups of individually known killer whales were compared quantitatively across behavioural categories. Acoustic recordings and simultaneous behavioural observations were made of northern resident killer whales off Vancouver Island in 1996 and 1997. Whistles were produced at greater rates than discrete calls during close-range behavioural activities than during long-range activities. They were the predominant sound-type recorded during socializing. The number of whistles per animal per minute was significantly higher during close-range behavioural activities than during long-range activities. Evidently, whistles play an important role in the close-range acoustic communication in northern resident killer whales.

  16. Hepatitis C Now Leading Infectious Disease Killer in U.S.

    MedlinePlus

    ... page: https://medlineplus.gov/news/fullstory_158651.html Hepatitis C Now Leading Infectious Disease Killer in U.S. ... May 4, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- The number of hepatitis C-linked deaths in the United States reached ...

  17. Development of eighteen microsatellite loci in walleye (Sander vitreus)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Coykendall, Dolly K.; Morrison, Cheryl L.; Stott, Wendy; Springmann, Marcus J.

    2014-01-01

    A suite of tri- and tetra-nucleotide microsatellite loci were developed for walleye (Sander vitreus) from 454 pyrosequencing data. Eighteen of the 50 primer sets tested amplified consistently in 35 walleye from two lakes on Isle Royale, Lake Superior: Chickenbone Lake and Whittlesey Lake. The loci displayed moderate levels of allelic diversity (average 5.5 alleles/locus) and heterozygosity (average 35.8 %). Levels of genetic diversity were sufficient to produce unique multi-locus genotypes and detect phylogeographic structuring as individuals assigned back to their population of origin. Cross-species amplification within S. canadensis (sauger) was successful for 15 loci, and 11 loci were diagnostic to species. The loci characterized here will be useful for detecting fine-scale spatial structuring, resolving the taxonomic status of Sander species and sub-species, and detecting walleye/sauger hybrids.

  18. Hungarian population data on seven PCR-based loci.

    PubMed

    Budowle, B; Woller, J; Koons, B W; Furedi, S; Errera, J D; Padar, Z

    1996-07-01

    Hungarian population data for the loci LDLR, GYPA, HBGG, D7S8, Gc, HLA-DQA1, and D1S80 were generated. The genotype frequency distributions for the loci do not deviate from Hardy Weinberg expectations. Furthermore, there was little evidence for departures from expectations of independence between the loci. Using a test for homogeneity all the loci were similar between two Hungarian population samples and only the HLA-DQA1 locus was statistically different between Hungarians and US Caucasians. There generally would be little forensic differences, whether a Hungarian or a US Caucasian database was used, for estimating multiple locus profile frequencies for the seven PCR-based loci. PMID:8754580

  19. Competing Conservation Objectives for Predators and Prey: Estimating Killer Whale Prey Requirements for Chinook Salmon

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Rob; Krkošek, Martin; Ashe, Erin; Branch, Trevor A.; Clark, Steve; Hammond, Philip S.; Hoyt, Erich; Noren, Dawn P.; Rosen, David; Winship, Arliss

    2011-01-01

    Ecosystem-based management (EBM) of marine resources attempts to conserve interacting species. In contrast to single-species fisheries management, EBM aims to identify and resolve conflicting objectives for different species. Such a conflict may be emerging in the northeastern Pacific for southern resident killer whales (Orcinus orca) and their primary prey, Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha). Both species have at-risk conservation status and transboundary (Canada–US) ranges. We modeled individual killer whale prey requirements from feeding and growth records of captive killer whales and morphometric data from historic live-capture fishery and whaling records worldwide. The models, combined with caloric value of salmon, and demographic and diet data for wild killer whales, allow us to predict salmon quantities needed to maintain and recover this killer whale population, which numbered 87 individuals in 2009. Our analyses provide new information on cost of lactation and new parameter estimates for other killer whale populations globally. Prey requirements of southern resident killer whales are difficult to reconcile with fisheries and conservation objectives for Chinook salmon, because the number of fish required is large relative to annual returns and fishery catches. For instance, a U.S. recovery goal (2.3% annual population growth of killer whales over 28 years) implies a 75% increase in energetic requirements. Reducing salmon fisheries may serve as a temporary mitigation measure to allow time for management actions to improve salmon productivity to take effect. As ecosystem-based fishery management becomes more prevalent, trade-offs between conservation objectives for predators and prey will become increasingly necessary. Our approach offers scenarios to compare relative influence of various sources of uncertainty on the resulting consumption estimates to prioritise future research efforts, and a general approach for assessing the extent of conflict

  20. Competing conservation objectives for predators and prey: estimating killer whale prey requirements for Chinook salmon.

    PubMed

    Williams, Rob; Krkošek, Martin; Ashe, Erin; Branch, Trevor A; Clark, Steve; Hammond, Philip S; Hoyt, Erich; Noren, Dawn P; Rosen, David; Winship, Arliss

    2011-01-01

    Ecosystem-based management (EBM) of marine resources attempts to conserve interacting species. In contrast to single-species fisheries management, EBM aims to identify and resolve conflicting objectives for different species. Such a conflict may be emerging in the northeastern Pacific for southern resident killer whales (Orcinus orca) and their primary prey, Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha). Both species have at-risk conservation status and transboundary (Canada-US) ranges. We modeled individual killer whale prey requirements from feeding and growth records of captive killer whales and morphometric data from historic live-capture fishery and whaling records worldwide. The models, combined with caloric value of salmon, and demographic and diet data for wild killer whales, allow us to predict salmon quantities needed to maintain and recover this killer whale population, which numbered 87 individuals in 2009. Our analyses provide new information on cost of lactation and new parameter estimates for other killer whale populations globally. Prey requirements of southern resident killer whales are difficult to reconcile with fisheries and conservation objectives for Chinook salmon, because the number of fish required is large relative to annual returns and fishery catches. For instance, a U.S. recovery goal (2.3% annual population growth of killer whales over 28 years) implies a 75% increase in energetic requirements. Reducing salmon fisheries may serve as a temporary mitigation measure to allow time for management actions to improve salmon productivity to take effect. As ecosystem-based fishery management becomes more prevalent, trade-offs between conservation objectives for predators and prey will become increasingly necessary. Our approach offers scenarios to compare relative influence of various sources of uncertainty on the resulting consumption estimates to prioritise future research efforts, and a general approach for assessing the extent of conflict

  1. Target Strength of Southern Resident Killer Whales (Orcinus orca): Measurement and Modeling

    SciTech Connect

    Xu, Jinshan; Deng, Zhiqun; Carlson, Thomas J.; Moore, Brian

    2012-04-04

    A major criterion for tidal power licensing in Washington’s Puget Sound is the management of the risk of injury to killer whales due to collision with moving turbine blades. An active monitoring system is being proposed for killer whale detection, tracking, and alerting that links to and triggers temporary turbine shutdown when there is risk of collision. Target strength (TS) modeling of the killer whale is critical to the design and application of any active monitoring system. A 1996 study performed a high-resolution measurement of acoustic reflectivity as a function of frequency of a female bottlenose dolphin (2.2 m length) at broadside aspect and TS as a function of incident angle at 67 kHz frequency. Assuming that killer whales share similar morphology structure with the bottlenose dolphin, we extrapolated the TS of an adult killer whale 7.5 m in length at 67 kHz frequency with -8 dB at broadside aspect and -28 dB at tail side. The backscattering data from three Southern Resident killer whales were analyzed to obtain the TS measurement. These data were collected at Lime Kiln State Park using a split-beam system deployed from a boat. The TS of the killer whale at higher frequency (200 kHz) was estimated based on a three-layer model for plane wave reflection from the lung of the whale. The TS data of killer whales were in good agreement with our model. In this paper, we also discuss and explain possible causes for measurement estimation error.

  2. Pollen Killer Gene S35 Function Requires Interaction with an Activator That Maps Close to S24, Another Pollen Killer Gene in Rice

    PubMed Central

    Kubo, Takahiko; Yoshimura, Atsushi; Kurata, Nori

    2016-01-01

    Pollen killer genes disable noncarrier pollens, and are responsible for male sterility and segregation distortion in hybrid populations of distantly related plant species. The genetic networks and the molecular mechanisms underlying the pollen killer system remain largely unknown. Two pollen killer genes, S24 and S35, have been found in an intersubspecific cross of Oryza sativa ssp. indica and japonica. The effect of S24 is counteracted by an unlinked locus EFS. Additionally, S35 has been proposed to interact with S24 to induce pollen sterility. These genetic interactions are suggestive of a single S24-centric genetic pathway (EFS–S24–S35) for the pollen killer system. To examine this hypothetical genetic pathway, the S35 and the S24 regions were further characterized and genetically dissected in this study. Our results indicated that S35 causes pollen sterility independently of both the EFS and S24 genes, but is dependent on a novel gene close to the S24 locus, named incentive for killing pollen (INK). We confirmed the phenotypic effect of the INK gene separately from the S24 gene, and identified the INK locus within an interval of less than 0.6 Mb on rice chromosome 5. This study characterized the genetic effect of the two independent genetic pathways of INK–S35 and EFS–S24 in indica–japonica hybrid progeny. Our results provide clear evidence that hybrid male sterility in rice is caused by several pollen killer networks with multiple factors positively and negatively regulating pollen killer genes. PMID:27172610

  3. Pollen Killer Gene S35 Function Requires Interaction with an Activator That Maps Close to S24, Another Pollen Killer Gene in Rice.

    PubMed

    Kubo, Takahiko; Yoshimura, Atsushi; Kurata, Nori

    2016-01-01

    Pollen killer genes disable noncarrier pollens, and are responsible for male sterility and segregation distortion in hybrid populations of distantly related plant species. The genetic networks and the molecular mechanisms underlying the pollen killer system remain largely unknown. Two pollen killer genes, S24 and S35, have been found in an intersubspecific cross of Oryza sativa ssp. indica and japonica The effect of S24 is counteracted by an unlinked locus EFS Additionally, S35 has been proposed to interact with S24 to induce pollen sterility. These genetic interactions are suggestive of a single S24-centric genetic pathway (EFS-S24-S35) for the pollen killer system. To examine this hypothetical genetic pathway, the S35 and the S24 regions were further characterized and genetically dissected in this study. Our results indicated that S35 causes pollen sterility independently of both the EFS and S24 genes, but is dependent on a novel gene close to the S24 locus, named incentive for killing pollen (INK). We confirmed the phenotypic effect of the INK gene separately from the S24 gene, and identified the INK locus within an interval of less than 0.6 Mb on rice chromosome 5. This study characterized the genetic effect of the two independent genetic pathways of INK-S35 and EFS-S24 in indica-japonica hybrid progeny. Our results provide clear evidence that hybrid male sterility in rice is caused by several pollen killer networks with multiple factors positively and negatively regulating pollen killer genes. PMID:27172610

  4. Differences in acoustic features of vocalizations produced by killer whales cross-socialized with bottlenose dolphins.

    PubMed

    Musser, Whitney B; Bowles, Ann E; Grebner, Dawn M; Crance, Jessica L

    2014-10-01

    Limited previous evidence suggests that killer whales (Orcinus orca) are capable of vocal production learning. However, vocal contextual learning has not been studied, nor the factors promoting learning. Vocalizations were collected from three killer whales with a history of exposure to bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and compared with data from seven killer whales held with conspecifics and nine bottlenose dolphins. The three whales' repertoires were distinguishable by a higher proportion of click trains and whistles. Time-domain features of click trains were intermediate between those of whales held with conspecifics and dolphins. These differences provided evidence for contextual learning. One killer whale spontaneously learned to produce artificial chirps taught to dolphins; acoustic features fell within the range of inter-individual differences among the dolphins. This whale also produced whistles similar to a stereotyped whistle produced by one dolphin. Thus, results provide further support for vocal production learning and show that killer whales are capable of contextual learning. That killer whales produce similar repertoires when associated with another species suggests substantial vocal plasticity and motivation for vocal conformity with social associates. PMID:25324098

  5. Habitat-based PCB environmental quality criteria for the protection of endangered killer whales (Orcinus orca).

    PubMed

    Alava, Juan José; Ross, Peter S; Lachmuth, Cara; Ford, John K B; Hickie, Brendan E; Gobas, Frank A P C

    2012-11-20

    The development of an area-based polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) food-web bioaccumulation model enabled a critical evaluation of the efficacy of sediment quality criteria and prey tissue residue guidelines in protecting fish-eating resident killer whales of British Columbia and adjacent waters. Model-predicted and observed PCB concentrations in resident killer whales and Chinook salmon were in good agreement, supporting the model's application for risk assessment and criteria development. Model application shows that PCB concentrations in the sediments from the resident killer whale's Critical Habitats and entire foraging range leads to PCB concentrations in most killer whales that exceed PCB toxicity threshold concentrations reported for marine mammals. Results further indicate that current PCB sediment quality and prey tissue residue criteria for fish-eating wildlife are not protective of killer whales and are not appropriate for assessing risks of PCB-contaminated sediments to high trophic level biota. We present a novel methodology for deriving sediment quality criteria and tissue residue guidelines that protect biota of high trophic levels under various PCB management scenarios. PCB concentrations in sediments and in prey that are deemed protective of resident killer whale health are much lower than current criteria values, underscoring the extreme vulnerability of high trophic level marine mammals to persistent and bioaccumulative contaminants. PMID:23098163

  6. K2 killer toxin-induced physiological changes in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Orentaite, Irma; Poranen, Minna M; Oksanen, Hanna M; Daugelavicius, Rimantas; Bamford, Dennis H

    2016-03-01

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells produce killer toxins, such as K1, K2 and K28, that can modulate the growth of other yeasts giving advantage for the killer strains. Here we focused on the physiological changes induced by K2 toxin on a non-toxin-producing yeast strain as well as K1, K2 and K28 killer strains. Potentiometric measurements were adjusted to observe that K2 toxin immediately acts on the sensitive cells leading to membrane permeability. This correlated with reduced respiration activity, lowered intracellular ATP content and decrease in cell viability. However, we did not detect any significant ATP leakage from the cells treated by killer toxin K2. Strains producing heterologous toxins K1 and K28 were less sensitive to K2 than the non-toxin producing one suggesting partial cross-protection between the different killer systems. This phenomenon may be connected to the observed differences in respiratory activities of the killer strains and the non-toxin-producing strain at low pH. This might also have practical consequences in wine industry; both as beneficial ones in controlling contaminating yeasts and non-beneficial ones causing sluggish fermentation. PMID:26818855

  7. Spare PRELI Gene Loci: Failsafe Chromosome Insurance?

    PubMed Central

    Rangel, Roberto; Ortiz-Quintero, Blanca; Blackburn, Michael R.; Martinez-Valdez, Hector

    2012-01-01

    Background LEA (late embryogenesis abundant) proteins encode conserved N-terminal mitochondrial signal domains and C-terminal (A/TAEKAK) motif repeats, long-presumed to confer cell resistance to stress and death cues. This prompted the hypothesis that LEA proteins are central to mitochondria mechanisms that connect bioenergetics with cell responses to stress and death signaling. In support of this hypothesis, recent studies have demonstrated that mammalian LEA protein PRELI can act as a biochemical hub, which upholds mitochondria energy metabolism, while concomitantly promoting B cell resistance to stress and induced death. Hence, it is important to define in vivo the physiological relevance of PRELI expression. Methods and Findings Given the ubiquitous PRELI expression during mouse development, embryo lethality could be anticipated. Thus, conditional gene targeting was engineered by insertion of flanking loxP (flox)/Cre recognition sites on PRELI chromosome 13 (Chr 13) locus to abort its expression in a tissue-specific manner. After obtaining mouse lines with homozygous PRELI floxed alleles (PRELIf/f), the animals were crossed with CD19-driven Cre-recombinase transgenic mice to investigate whether PRELI inactivation could affect B-lymphocyte physiology and survival. Mice with homozygous B cell-specific PRELI deletion (CD19-Cre/Chr13 PRELI−/−) bred normally and did not show any signs of morbidity. Histopathology and flow cytometry analyses revealed that cell lineage identity, morphology, and viability were indistinguishable between wild type CD19-Cre/Chr13 PRELI+/+ and CD19-Cre/Chr13 PRELI−/− deficient mice. Furthermore, B cell PRELI gene expression seemed unaffected by Chr13 PRELI gene targeting. However, identification of additional PRELI loci in mouse Chr1 and Chr5 provided an explanation for the paradox between LEA-dependent cytoprotection and the seemingly futile consequences of Chr 13 PRELI gene inactivation. Importantly, PRELI expression from spare

  8. Contrasting evolutionary histories among tightly linked HLA loci.

    PubMed Central

    Klitz, W; Thomson, G; Baur, M P

    1986-01-01

    Genes comprising the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) play a central role in governing the immune response of vertebrates. A great deal of information has been revealed on the molecular biology and physiology of these loci, but three features-the high polymorphism, tight linkage among the loci, and the nonrandom association of alleles-make the system of particular interest from the perspective of population genetics. Information on the dynamic evolutionary forces that have acted on a locus can be inferred from the number and distribution of alleles that it carries. Ten loci from the HLA region of the human MHC, each sampled from several different populations, have been examined for departures from the expected value of homozygosity under the condition of selective neutrality. The homozygosities of five class I and II loci that code for membrane glycoproteins, HLA-A, -B, -C, -DR, and -DQ, and of glyoxylase I (GLO) were significantly less than the neutrality expectations. This suggests the presence of some form of balancing selection. In spite of being closely linked, in fact, located between the class I and class II histocompatibility loci, the homozygosities of the four class III or complement loci C2, Bf, C4A, and C4B, which are detected by electrophoresis, were indistinguishable from, or exceeded, that expected under neutrality. Although this conforms to the suggestion that, in general, electrophoretic variants are neutral, because of the tight linkage to loci demonstrating a history of selection, it is possible that the mechanism for generating variation in the class III loci may be different from that of the class I and class II loci. PMID:3766540

  9. New basal cell carcinoma susceptibility loci

    PubMed Central

    Stacey, Simon N.; Helgason, Hannes; Gudjonsson, Sigurjon A.; Thorleifsson, Gudmar; Zink, Florian; Sigurdsson, Asgeir; Kehr, Birte; Gudmundsson, Julius; Sulem, Patrick; Sigurgeirsson, Bardur; Benediktsdottir, Kristrun R.; Thorisdottir, Kristin; Ragnarsson, Rafn; Fuentelsaz, Victoria; Corredera, Cristina; Gilaberte, Yolanda; Grasa, Matilde; Planelles, Dolores; Sanmartin, Onofre; Rudnai, Peter; Gurzau, Eugene; Koppova, Kvetoslava; Nexø, Bjørn A.; Tjønneland, Anne; Overvad, Kim; Jonasson, Jon G.; Tryggvadottir, Laufey; Johannsdottir, Hrefna; Kristinsdottir, Anna M.; Stefansson, Hreinn; Masson, Gisli; Magnusson, Olafur T.; Halldorsson, Bjarni V.; Kong, Augustine; Rafnar, Thorunn; Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur; Vogel, Ulla; Kumar, Rajiv; Nagore, Eduardo; Mayordomo, José I.; Gudbjartsson, Daniel F.; Olafsson, Jon H.; Stefansson, Kari

    2015-01-01

    In an ongoing screen for DNA sequence variants that confer risk of cutaneous basal cell carcinoma (BCC), we conduct a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of 24,988,228 SNPs and small indels detected through whole-genome sequencing of 2,636 Icelanders and imputed into 4,572 BCC patients and 266,358 controls. Here we show the discovery of four new BCC susceptibility loci: 2p24 MYCN (rs57244888[C], OR=0.76, P=4.7 × 10−12), 2q33 CASP8-ALS2CR12 (rs13014235[C], OR=1.15, P=1.5 × 10−9), 8q21 ZFHX4 (rs28727938[G], OR=0.70, P=3.5 × 10−12) and 10p14 GATA3 (rs73635312[A], OR=0.74, P=2.4 × 10−16). Fine mapping reveals that two variants correlated with rs73635312[A] occur in conserved binding sites for the GATA3 transcription factor. In addition, expression microarrays and RNA-seq show that rs13014235[C] and a related SNP rs700635[C] are associated with expression of CASP8 splice variants in which sequences from intron 8 are retained. PMID:25855136

  10. Mapping Environment-Specific Quantitative Trait Loci

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xin; Zhao, Fuping; Xu, Shizhong

    2010-01-01

    Environment-specific quantitative trait loci (QTL) refer to QTL that express differently in different environments, a phenomenon called QTL-by-environment (Q × E) interaction. Q × E interaction is a difficult problem extended from traditional QTL mapping. The mixture model maximum-likelihood method is commonly adopted for interval mapping of QTL, but the method is not optimal in handling QTL interacting with environments. We partitioned QTL effects into main and interaction effects. The main effects are represented by the means of QTL effects in all environments and the interaction effects are represented by the variances of the QTL effects across environments. We used the Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) implemented Bayesian method to estimate both the main and the interaction effects. The residual error covariance matrix was modeled using the factor analytic covariance structure. A simulation study showed that the factor analytic structure is robust and can handle other structures as special cases. The method was also applied to Q × E interaction mapping for the yield trait of barley. Eight markers showed significant main effects and 18 markers showed significant Q × E interaction. The 18 interacting markers were distributed across all seven chromosomes of the entire genome. Only 1 marker had both the main and the Q × E interaction effects. Each of the other markers had either a main effect or a Q × E interaction effect but not both. PMID:20805558

  11. Alu insertion loci and platyrrhine primate phylogeny.

    PubMed

    Ray, David A; Xing, Jinchuan; Hedges, Dale J; Hall, Michael A; Laborde, Meredith E; Anders, Bridget A; White, Brittany R; Stoilova, Nadica; Fowlkes, Justin D; Landry, Kate E; Chemnick, Leona G; Ryder, Oliver A; Batzer, Mark A

    2005-04-01

    Short INterspersed Elements (SINEs) make very useful phylogenetic markers because the integration of a particular element at a location in the genome is irreversible and of known polarity. These attributes make analysis of SINEs as phylogenetic characters an essentially homoplasy-free affair. Alu elements are primate-specific SINEs that make up a large portion of the human genome and are also widespread in other primates. Using a combination wet-bench and computational approach we recovered 190 Alu insertions, 183 of which are specific to the genomes of nine New World primates. We used these loci to investigate branching order and have produced a cladogram that supports a sister relationship between Atelidae (spider, woolly, and howler monkeys) and Cebidae (marmosets, tamarins, and owl monkeys) and then the joining of this two family clade to Pitheciidae (titi and saki monkeys). The data support these relationships with a homoplasy index of 0.00. In this study, we report one of the largest applications of SINE elements to phylogenetic analysis to date, and the results provide a robust molecular phylogeny for platyrrhine primates. PMID:15737586

  12. Naturally segregating loci exhibit epistasis for fitness

    PubMed Central

    Monnahan, Patrick J.; Kelly, John K.

    2015-01-01

    The extent to which gene interaction or epistasis contributes to fitness variation within populations remains poorly understood, despite its importance to a myriad of evolutionary questions. Here, we report a multi-year field study estimating fitness of Mimulus guttatus genetic lines in which pairs of naturally segregating loci exist in an otherwise uniform background. An allele at QTL x5b—a locus originally mapped for its effect on flower size—positively affects survival if combined with one genotype at quantitative trait locus x10a (aa) but has negative effects when combined with the other genotypes (Aa and AA). The viability differences between genotypes parallel phenotypic differences for the time and node at which a plant flowers. Viability is negatively correlated with fecundity across genotypes, indicating antagonistic pleiotropy for fitness components. This trade-off reduces the genetic variance for total fitness relative to the individual fitness components and thus may serve to maintain variation. Additionally, we find that the effects of each locus and their interaction often vary with the environment. PMID:26246336

  13. Isolation and characterization of microsatellite loci in Quercus fabri (Fagaceae).

    PubMed

    Xiao, Z Z; Chen, W W; Bao, W; Wang, R; Li, Y Y

    2016-01-01

    Quercus fabri is a pioneer species of secondary succession in evergreen broadleaved forests in China. In this study, we isolated and developed 12 polymorphic and 2 monomorphic microsatellite loci for Q. fabri using the biotin-streptavidin capture method. We characterized 12 polymorphic loci in 52 individuals from two populations. The number of alleles per locus ranged from 3 to 23. The observed and expected heterozygosities per locus were 0.033-0.773 and 0.138-0.924, respectively. These microsatellite loci will facilitate the studies on genetic variation, mating system, and gene flow of Q. fabri. PMID:27420954

  14. Characterization of microsatellite loci isolated in Mountain Plover (Charadrius montanus)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    John, J. St; Kysela, R.F.; Oyler-McCance, S.J.

    2007-01-01

    Primers for 15 microsatellite loci were developed for Mountain Plover, a species whose distribution and abundance have been reduced drastically in the past 30 years. In a screen of 126 individuals collected from four breeding locales across the species' range, levels of polymorphism ranged from two to 13 alleles per locus. No two loci were found to be linked, although one locus revealed significant departures from Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. These microsatellite loci can be used in population genetic studies, ultimately aiding in management efforts for Mountain Plover. Additionally, these markers can potentially be used in studies investigating the mating system of Mountain Plover. ?? 2007 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  15. Longitudinal evaluation of leukocyte transcripts in killer whales (Orcinus Orca)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sitt, Tatjana; Bowen, Lizabeth; Lee, Chia-Shan; Blanchard, Myra; McBain, James; Dold, Christopher; Stott, Jeffrey L.

    2016-01-01

    Early identification of illness and/or presence of environmental and/or social stressors in free-ranging and domestic cetaceans is a priority for marine mammal health care professionals. Incorporation of leukocyte gene transcript analysis into the diagnostic tool kit has the potential to augment classical diagnostics based upon ease of sample storage and shipment, inducible nature and well-defined roles of transcription and associated downstream actions. Development of biomarkers that could serve to identify “insults” and potentially differentiate disease etiology would be of great diagnostic value. To this end, a modest number of peripheral blood leukocyte gene transcripts were selected for application to a domestic killer whale population with a focus on broad representation of inducible immunologically relevant genes. Normalized leukocyte transcript values, longitudinally acquired from 232 blood samples derived from 26 clinically healthy whales, were not visibly influenced temporally nor by sex or the specific Park in which they resided. Stability in leukocyte transcript number during periods of health enhances their potential use in diagnostics through identification of outliers. Transcript levels of two cytokine genes, IL-4 and IL-17, were highly variable within the group as compared to the other transcripts. IL-4 transcripts were typically absent. Analysis of transcript levels on the other genes of interest, on an individual animal basis, identified more outliers than were visible when analyzed in the context of the entire population. The majority of outliers (9 samples) were low, though elevated transcripts were identified for IL-17 from 2 animals and one each for Cox-2 and IL-10. The low number of outliers was not unexpected as sample selection was intentionally directed towards animals that were clinically healthy at the time of collection. Outliers may reflect animals experiencing subclinical disease that is transient and self-limiting. The

  16. Longitudinal evaluation of leukocyte transcripts in killer whales (Orcinus Orca).

    PubMed

    Sitt, Tatjana; Bowen, Lizabeth; Lee, Chia-Shan; Blanchard, Myra T; McBain, James; Dold, Christopher; Stott, Jeffrey L

    2016-07-01

    Early identification of illness and/or presence of environmental and/or social stressors in free-ranging and domestic cetaceans is a priority for marine mammal health care professionals. Incorporation of leukocyte gene transcript analysis into the diagnostic tool kit has the potential to augment classical diagnostics based upon ease of sample storage and shipment, inducible nature and well-defined roles of transcription and associated downstream actions. Development of biomarkers that could serve to identify "insults" and potentially differentiate disease etiology would be of great diagnostic value. To this end, a modest number of peripheral blood leukocyte gene transcripts were selected for application to a domestic killer whale population with a focus on broad representation of inducible immunologically relevant genes. Normalized leukocyte transcript values, longitudinally acquired from 232 blood samples derived from 26 clinically healthy whales, were not visibly influenced temporally nor by sex or the specific Park in which they resided. Stability in leukocyte transcript number during periods of health enhances their potential use in diagnostics through identification of outliers. Transcript levels of two cytokine genes, IL-4 and IL-17, were highly variable within the group as compared to the other transcripts. IL-4 transcripts were typically absent. Analysis of transcript levels on the other genes of interest, on an individual animal basis, identified more outliers than were visible when analyzed in the context of the entire population. The majority of outliers (9 samples) were low, though elevated transcripts were identified for IL-17 from 2 animals and one each for Cox-2 and IL-10. The low number of outliers was not unexpected as sample selection was intentionally directed towards animals that were clinically healthy at the time of collection. Outliers may reflect animals experiencing subclinical disease that is transient and self-limiting. The immunologic

  17. Hypothalamic modulation of splenic natural killer cell activity in rats.

    PubMed Central

    Katafuchi, T; Ichijo, T; Take, S; Hori, T

    1993-01-01

    1. The cytotoxic activity of splenic natural killer cells measured by a standard chromium release assay in urethane and alpha-chloralose-anaesthetized rats was significantly suppressed 20 min after bilateral ablation of the medial part of the preoptic hypothalamus (MPO). The suppression was completely blocked by prior splenic denervation. The splenic natural killer cell activity of MPO sham-lesioned rats or thalamus-lesioned rats, both having an intact splenic innervation, were not different from that of a non-treated control group. 2. Electrical stimulation of the bilateral MPO (0.1 ms, 0.1-0.3 mA, 5-100 Hz) suppressed the efferent activity of the splenic nerve in all six rats examined. The reduction of the nerve activity was accompanied by a transient fall in blood pressure. An I.V. injection of phenylephrine (3 micrograms/0.3 ml) also evoked a suppression of the nerve activity, which was accompanied by transient hypertension, suggesting that the suppressive effect of the MPO stimulation was independent of changes in blood pressure. On the other hand, a bilateral lesion of the MPO resulted in a sustained increase in the electrical activity of the splenic sympathetic nerve filaments which lasted for more than 2 h. 3. Microinjection of monosodium-L-glutamate (0.1 and 0.01 M in 0.1 microliters saline) unilaterally into the MPO evoked a transient suppression of the efferent discharge rate of the splenic nerve activity within 1 min, which was also accompanied by a decrease in blood pressure. The injection of saline (0.1 microliter) into the MPO had no effect. The microinjection of recombinant human interferon-alpha (200 and 2000 U in 0.1 microliter saline) into the MPO dose dependently increased the splenic nerve activity without any change in blood pressure. 4. In contrast, microinjection of interferon-alpha into the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN) had no effect on splenic nerve activity, although an injection of glutamate increased the nerve

  18. Design and operation specifications of an active monitoring system for detecting southern resident killer whales

    SciTech Connect

    Deng, Zhiqun; Carlson, Thomas J.; Xu, Jinshan; Martinez, Jayson J.; Weiland, Mark A.; Mueller, Robert P.; Myers, Joshua R.; Jones, Mark E.

    2011-09-30

    Before final approval is given to the Snohomish County Public Utility District No. 1 for deploying the first tidal power devices in the United States in an open water environment, a system to manage the potential risk of injury to killer whales due to collision with moving turbine blades must be demonstrated. The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is tasked with establishing the performance requirements for, constructing, and testing a prototype marine animal alert system for triggering temporary turbine shutdown when there is risk of collision with a killer whale. To develop a system that relies on active sonar two critical areas must be investigated - the target strength of killer whales and the frequency content of commercially available active sonar units. PNNL studied three target strength models: a simple model, the Fourier matching model, and the Kirchoff-ray mode model. Using target strength measurements of bottlenose dolphins obtained by previous researchers and assuming killer whales share similar morphology and structure, PNNL extrapolated the target strength of an adult killer whale 7.5 m in length at a frequency of 67 kHz. To study the frequency content of a commercially available sonar unit, direct measurements of the signal transmitted by the sonar were obtained by using a hydrophone connected to a data acquisition system in both laboratory and field conditions. The measurements revealed that in addition to the primary frequency of 200 kHz, there is a secondary frequency component at 90 kHz, which is within the hearing range of killer whales. The amplitude of the 90-kHz frequency component is above the hearing threshold of killer whales but below the threshold for potential injuries.

  19. Influence of natural and recombinant interferons on development of antiviral condition and activity of natural killers

    SciTech Connect

    Kuznetsov, V.P.; Avdeev, G.I.; Vyadro, M.M.; Leikin, Yu.D.; Frolova, I.S.

    1986-03-01

    For the purpose of a preliminary estimate of the therapeutic potential of domestic recombinant alpha/sub 2/-component of human leukocytic interferon (rl) in vitro tests, the authors studied its ability to induce development of antiviral condition in diploid culture of human embryo fibroblasts and to activate the cytolytic effect of natural killers in relation to tumor cells, of the K-562 leukemia line and cells of lung adenocarcinoma. The authors used a medicinal form of rL which was derived by expression of a reconstructed gene in Escherichia coli cells. Part of the tests were conducted with an analogous preparation synthesized using another producer, Pseudomonas sp). The biological effect of both preparations was the same. For comparison, a natural preparation was used in all tests: human leukocytic interferon for injection, II(le). The authors studied activity of natural killers in a fraction of mononuclears isolated from blood of essentially healthy donors and from cancer patients. Cells were incubated for 2 h with various concentrations of interferons, then combined in a ratio of 25-50:1 with target cells labeled with /sup 51/Cr. Cytotoxic reaction was conducted for 4 (4-CTR) or 18 h (18-CTR) at 37/sup 0/C. Natural killers could thus be divided into two subpopulations: killer (4-CTR) and cytotoxic (18-CTR) cells. In preliminary tests, both preparations possessed the ability to active natural killers. The effective concentration for rL was within the limits of 1000-2000 IU/ml, and 50-200 Iu/ml for Le. The data on activation of natural killers in 16 oncological patients (primarily with lung cancer), the authors established that both rL and Le induced activation of natural killers in the overwhelming majority of cases in relation to K-562 target cells and adenocarcinomas of the lung.

  20. Variation in call pitch among killer whale ecotypes.

    PubMed

    Foote, Andrew D; Nystuen, Jeffrey A

    2008-03-01

    Vocal structure can vary between populations due to variation in ecology-dependent selection pressures, such as masking by background noise and the presence of eavesdroppers. Signalers can overcome these obstacles to effective communication by avoiding frequencies that overlap with background noise or the audible range of eavesdroppers. In the Northeastern Pacific three "ecotypes" of killer whale coexist in sympatry, but differ from one another in their diet and habitat use. The minimum frequency (F(min)) and the frequency containing the peak energy between 0 and 10 kHz (F(peak)) of a random sample of calls produced by a population of each ecotype was measured. The offshore ecotype produced calls with a significantly higher F(min) than the other ecotypes, which could be a strategy to avoid masking by low frequency chronic bandlimited wind noise found in the offshore environment. The resident ecotype produced calls with a significantly higher F(min) and F(peak) than the transient ecotype. This could be to reduce detection by their salmonid prey, which has a narrow band, low frequency auditory range. PMID:18345862

  1. Natural killer cells in hepatitis C: Current progress

    PubMed Central

    Yoon, Joo Chun; Yang, Chang Mo; Song, Youkyong; Lee, Jae Myun

    2016-01-01

    Patients infected with the hepatitis C virus (HCV) are characterized by a high incidence of chronic infection, which results in chronic hepatitis, liver cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. The functional impairment of HCV-specific T cells is associated with the evolution of an acute infection to chronic hepatitis. While T cells are the important effector cells in adaptive immunity, natural killer (NK) cells are the critical effector cells in innate immunity to virus infections. The findings of recent studies on NK cells in hepatitis C suggest that NK cell responses are indeed important in each phase of HCV infection. In the early phase, NK cells are involved in protective immunity to HCV. The immune evasion strategies used by HCV may target NK cells and might contribute to the progression to chronic hepatitis C. NK cells may control HCV replication and modulate hepatic fibrosis in the chronic phase. Further investigations are, however, needed, because a considerable number of studies observed functional impairment of NK cells in chronic HCV infection. Interestingly, the enhanced NK cell responses during interferon-α-based therapy of chronic hepatitis C indicate successful treatment. In spite of the advances in research on NK cells in hepatitis C, establishment of more physiological HCV infection model systems is needed to settle unsolved controversies over the role and functional status of NK cells in HCV infection. PMID:26819513

  2. Antitumor Responses of Invariant Natural Killer T Cells

    PubMed Central

    Altman, Jennie B.; Benavides, Adriana D.; Das, Rupali; Bassiri, Hamid

    2015-01-01

    Natural killer T (NKT) cells are innate-like lymphocytes that were first described in the late 1980s. Since their initial description, numerous studies have collectively shed light on their development and effector function. These studies have highlighted the unique requirements for the activation of these lymphocytes and the functional responses that distinguish these cells from other effector lymphocyte populations such as conventional T cells and NK cells. This body of literature suggests that NKT cells play diverse nonredundant roles in a number of disease processes, including the initiation and propagation of airway hyperreactivity, protection against a variety of pathogens, development of autoimmunity, and mediation of allograft responses. In this review, however, we focus on the role of a specific lineage of NKT cells in antitumor immunity. Specifically, we describe the development of invariant NKT (iNKT) cells and the factors that are critical for their acquisition of effector function. Next, we delineate the mechanisms by which iNKT cells influence and modulate the activity of other immune cells to directly or indirectly affect tumor growth. Finally, we review the successes and failures of clinical trials employing iNKT cell-based immunotherapies and explore the future prospects for the use of such strategies. PMID:26543874

  3. Extranodal Natural-Killer/T-Cell Lymphoma, Nasal Type

    PubMed Central

    Gill, Harinder; Liang, Raymond H. S.; Tse, Eric

    2010-01-01

    The World Health Organization (WHO) classification recognizes 2 main categories of natural killer (NK) cell-derived neoplasms, namely, extranodal NK/T-cell lymphoma, nasal type, and aggressive NK-cell leukaemia. Extranodal nasal NK/T-cell lymphoma is more frequent in the Far East and Latin America. Histopathological and immunophenotypical hallmarks include angiocentricity, angiodestruction, expression of cytoplasmic CD3 epsilon (ε), CD56, and cytotoxic molecules and evidence of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection. Early stage disease, in particular for localized lesion in the nasal region, is treated with chemotherapy and involved-field radiotherapy. On the other hand, multiagent chemotherapy is the mainstay of treatment for advanced or disseminated disease. L-asparaginase-containing regimens have shown promise in treating this condition. The role of autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation is yet to be clearly defined. Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, with the putative graft-versus-lymphoma effect, offers a potentially curative option in patients with advanced disease. PMID:21234094

  4. Aggressive mature natural killer cell neoplasms: from epidemiology to diagnosis

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Mature natural killer (NK) cell neoplasms are classified by the World Health Organization into NK/T cell lymphoma, nasal type (NKTCL), aggressive NK-cell leukemia (ANKCL) and chronic lymphoproliferative disorders of NK-cells, the latter being considered provisionally. NKTCL and ANKCL are rare diseases, with higher prevalence in Asia, Central and South America. Most NKTCL present extranodal, as a destructive tumor affecting the nose and upper aerodigestive tract (nasal NKTCL) or any organ or tissue (extranasal NKTCL) whereas ANKCL manifests as a systemic disease with multiorgan involvement and naturally evolutes to death in a few weeks. The histopathological hallmark of these aggressive NK-cell tumors is a polymorphic neoplastic infiltrate with angiocentricity, angiodestruction and tissue necrosis. The tumor cells have cytoplasmatic azurophilic granules and usually show a CD45+bright, CD2+, sCD3-, cytCD3epsilon+, CD56+bright, CD16−/+, cytotoxic granules molecules+ phenotype. T-cell receptor genes are in germ-line configuration. Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) -encoded membrane proteins and early region EBV RNA are usually detected on lymphoma cells, with a pattern suggestive of a latent viral infection type II. Complex chromosomal abnormalities are frequent and loss of chromosomes 6q, 11q, 13q, and 17p are recurrent aberrations. The rarity of the NK-cell tumors limits our ability to standardize the procedures for the diagnosis and clinical management and efforts should be made to encourage multi-institutional registries. PMID:23816348

  5. Antigen specificity of invariant natural killer T-cells.

    PubMed

    Birkholz, Alysia M; Kronenberg, Mitchell

    2015-12-01

    Natural killer T-cells, with an invariant T-cell antigen receptor α-chain (iNKT cells), are unique and conserved subset of lymphocytes capable of altering the immune system through their rapid and potent cytokine responses. They are reactive to lipid antigens presented by the CD1d molecule, an antigen-presenting molecule that is not highly polymorphic. iNKT cell responses frequently involve mixtures of cytokines that work against each other, and therefore attempts are underway to develop synthetic antigens that elicit only strong interferon-gamma (IFNγ) or only strong interleukin-4 responses but not both. Strong IFNγ responses may correlate with tighter binding to CD1d and prolonged stimulation of iNKT cells, and this may be useful for vaccine adjuvants and for stimulating anti-tumor responses. iNKT cells are self-reactive although the structure of the endogenous antigen is controversial. By contrast, bacterial and fungal lipids that engage the T-cell receptor and activate IFNγ from iNKT cells have been identified from both pathogenic and commensal organisms and the responses are in some cases highly protective from pathogens in mice. It is possible that the expanding knowledge of iNKT cell antigens and iNKT cell activation will provide the basis for therapies for patients suffering from infectious and immune diseases and cancer. PMID:27013447

  6. Advantages and applications of CAR-expressing natural killer cells

    PubMed Central

    Glienke, Wolfgang; Esser, Ruth; Priesner, Christoph; Suerth, Julia D.; Schambach, Axel; Wels, Winfried S.; Grez, Manuel; Kloess, Stephan; Arseniev, Lubomir; Koehl, Ulrike

    2015-01-01

    In contrast to donor T cells, natural killer (NK) cells are known to mediate anti-cancer effects without the risk of inducing graft-versus-host disease (GvHD). In order to improve cytotoxicity against resistant cancer cells, auspicious efforts have been made with chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) expressing T- and NK cells. These CAR-modified cells express antigen receptors against tumor-associated surface antigens, thus redirecting the effector cells and enhancing tumor-specific immunosurveillance. However, many cancer antigens are also expressed on healthy tissues, potentially leading to off tumor/on target toxicity by CAR-engineered cells. In order to control such potentially severe side effects, the insertion of suicide genes into CAR-modified effectors can provide a means for efficient depletion of these cells. While CAR-expressing T cells have entered successfully clinical trials, experience with CAR-engineered NK cells is mainly restricted to pre-clinical investigations and predominantly to NK cell lines. In this review we summarize the data on CAR expressing NK cells focusing on the possible advantage using these short-lived effector cells and discuss the necessity of suicide switches. Furthermore, we address the compliance of such modified NK cells with regulatory requirements as a new field in cellular immunotherapy. PMID:25729364

  7. Id2 regulates hyporesponsive invariant natural killer T cells.

    PubMed

    Stradner, Martin H; Cheung, Kitty P; Lasorella, Anna; Goldrath, Ananda W; D'Cruz, Louise M

    2016-08-01

    While the invariant natural killer T (iNKT)-cell response to primary stimulation with the glycolipid, α-galactosylceramide (αGalCer), is robust, the secondary response to this stimulus is muted resulting in a hyporesponsive state characterized by anti-inflammatory interleukin-10 (IL-10) production and high expression of programmed cell death 1 (PD1) and neuropilin 1 (NRP1). The E protein transcription factors and their negative regulators, the Id proteins, have previously been shown to regulate iNKT cell thymic development, subset differentiation and peripheral survival. Here, we provide evidence that the expression of the transcriptional regulator Id2 is downregulated upon stimulation of iNKT cells with their cognate antigen. Moreover, loss of Id2 expression by iNKT cells resulted in a hyporesponsive state, with splenic Id2-deficient iNKT cells expressing low levels of TBET, high levels of PD1 and NRP1 and production of IL-10 upon stimulation. We propose that downregulation of Id2 expression is an essential component of induction of the anti-inflammatory, hyporesponsive state in iNKT cells. PMID:26880074

  8. Invariant natural killer T cells: bridging innate and adaptive immunity

    PubMed Central

    Parekh, Vrajesh V.; Wu, Lan

    2013-01-01

    Cells of the innate immune system interact with pathogens via conserved pattern-recognition receptors, whereas cells of the adaptive immune system recognize pathogens through diverse, antigen-specific receptors that are generated by somatic DNA rearrangement. Invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells are a subset of lymphocytes that bridge the innate and adaptive immune systems. Although iNKT cells express T cell receptors that are generated by somatic DNA rearrangement, these receptors are semi-invariant and interact with a limited set of lipid and glycolipid antigens, thus resembling the pattern-recognition receptors of the innate immune system. Functionally, iNKT cells most closely resemble cells of the innate immune system, as they rapidly elicit their effector functions following activation, and fail to develop immunological memory. iNKT cells can become activated in response to a variety of stimuli and participate in the regulation of various immune responses. Activated iNKT cells produce several cytokines with the capacity to jump-start and modulate an adaptive immune response. A variety of glycolipid antigens that can differentially elicit distinct effector functions in iNKT cells have been identified. These reagents have been employed to test the hypothesis that iNKT cells can be harnessed for therapeutic purposes in human diseases. Here, we review the innate-like properties and functions of iNKT cells and discuss their interactions with other cell types of the immune system. PMID:20734065

  9. Stimulation of Natural Killer T Cells by Glycolipids

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Brian L.; Teyton, Luc; Bendelac, Albert; Savage, Paul B.

    2014-01-01

    Natural killer T (NKT) cells are a subset of T cells that recognize glycolipid antigens presented by the CD1d protein. The initial discovery of immunostimulatory glycolipids from a marine sponge and the T cells that respond to the compounds has led to extensive research by chemists and immunologists to understand how glycolipids are recognized, possible responses by NKT cells, and the structural features of glycolipids necessary for stimulatory activity. The presence of this cell type in humans and most mammals suggests that it plays critical roles in antigen recognition and the interface between innate and adaptive immunity. Both endogenous and exogenous natural antigens for NKT cells have been identified, and it is likely that glycolipid antigens remain to be discovered. Multiple series of structurally varied glycolipids have been synthesized and tested for stimulatory activity. The structural features of glycolipids necessary for NKT cell stimulation are moderately well understood, and designed compounds have proven to be much more potent antigens than their natural counterparts. Nevertheless, control over NKT cell responses by designed glycolipids has not been optimized, and further research will be required to fully reveal the therapeutic potential of this cell type. PMID:24352021

  10. Regulation of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis by natural killer (NK) cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, B; Yamamura, T; Kondo, T; Fujiwara, M; Tabira, T

    1997-11-17

    In this report, we establish a regulatory role of natural killer (NK) cells in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), a prototype T helper cell type 1 (Th1)-mediated disease. Active sensitization of C57BL/6 (B6) mice with the myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG)35-55 peptide induces a mild form of monophasic EAE. When mice were deprived of NK cells by antibody treatment before immunization, they developed a more serious form of EAE associated with relapse. Aggravation of EAE by NK cell deletion was also seen in beta 2-microglobulin-/- (beta 2m-/-) mice, indicating that NK cells can play a regulatory role in a manner independent of CD8+ T cells or NK1.1+ T cells (NK-T cells). The disease enhancement was associated with augmentation of T cell proliferation and production of Th1 cytokines in response to MOG35-55. EAE passively induced by the MOG35-55-specific T cell line was also enhanced by NK cell deletion in B6, beta 2m-/-, and recombination activation gene 2 (RAG-2)-/- mice, indicating that the regulation by NK cells can be independent of T, B, or NK-T cells. We further showed that NK cells inhibit T cell proliferation triggered by antigen or cytokine stimulation. Taken together, we conclude that NK cells are an important regulator for EAE in both induction and effector phases. PMID:9362528

  11. rRNA fragmentation induced by a yeast killer toxin.

    PubMed

    Kast, Alene; Klassen, Roland; Meinhardt, Friedhelm

    2014-02-01

    Virus like dsDNA elements (VLE) in yeast were previously shown to encode the killer toxins PaT and zymocin, which target distinct tRNA species via specific anticodon nuclease (ACNase) activities. Here, we characterize a third member of the VLE-encoded toxins, PiT from Pichia inositovora, and identify PiOrf4 as the cytotoxic subunit by conditional expression in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. In contrast to the tRNA targeting toxins, however, neither a change of the wobble uridine modification status by introduction of elp3 or trm9 mutations nor tRNA overexpression rescued from PiOrf4 toxicity. Consistent with a distinct RNA target, expression of PiOrf4 causes specific fragmentation of the 25S and 18S rRNA. A stable cleavage product comprising the first ∼ 130 nucleotides of the 18S rRNA was purified and characterized by linker ligation and subsequent reverse transcription; 3'-termini were mapped to nucleotide 131 and 132 of the 18S rRNA sequence, a region showing some similarity to the anticodon loop of tRNA(Glu)(UUC), the zymocin target. PiOrf4 residues Glu9 and His214, corresponding to catalytic sites Glu9 and His209 in the ACNase subunit of zymocin are essential for in vivo toxicity and rRNA fragmentation, raising the possibility of functionally conserved RNase modules in both proteins. PMID:24308908

  12. Natural killer cells regulate eosinophilic inflammation in chronic rhinosinusitis

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Ji Heui; Choi, Go Eun; Lee, Bong-Jae; Kwon, Seog Woon; Lee, Seung-Hyo; Kim, Hun Sik; Jang, Yong Ju

    2016-01-01

    Eosinophils play a major pathologic role in the pathogenesis of diverse inflammatory diseases including chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS). Dysregulated production of prostaglandin (PG), particularly PGD2, is considered to be an important contributing factor to eosinophilic inflammation in CRS primarily through proinflammatory and chemotactic effects on eosinophils. Here, we provide evidence that PGD2 can promote eosinophilic inflammation through a suppression of Natural killer (NK) cell effector function and NK cell-mediated eosinophil regulation. Eosinophil apoptosis mediated by NK cells was significantly decreased in CRS patients compared with healthy controls. This decrease was associated with NK cell dysfunction and eosinophilic inflammation. Tissue eosinophils were positively correlated with blood eosinophils in CRS patients. In a murine model of CRS, NK cell depletion caused an exacerbation of blood eosinophilia and eosinophilic inflammation in the sinonasal tissue. PGD2 and its metabolite, but not PGE2 and a panel of cytokines including TGF-β, were increased in CRS patients compared with controls. Effector functions of NK cells were potently suppressed by PGD2-dependent, rather than PGE2-dependent, pathway in controls and CRS patients. Thus, our results suggest decreased NK cell-mediated eosinophil regulation, possibly through an increased level of PGD2, as a previously unrecognized link between PG dysregulation and eosinophilic inflammation in CRS. PMID:27271931

  13. Natural killer cells in non-hematopoietic malignancies

    PubMed Central

    Desbois, Mélanie; Rusakiewicz, Sylvie; Locher, Clara; Zitvogel, Laurence; Chaput, Nathalie

    2012-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells belong to the innate immune system and were initially described functionallywise by their spontaneous cytotoxic potential against transformed or virus-infected cells. A delicate balance between activating and inhibiting receptors regulates NK cell tolerance. A better understanding of tissue resident NK cells, of NK cell maturation stages and migration patterns has evolved allowing a thoughtful evaluation of their modus operandi. While evidence has been brought up for their relevance as gate keepers in some hematopoietic malignancies, the role of NK cells against progression and dissemination of solid tumors remains questionable. Hence, many studies pointed out the functional defects of the rare NK cell infiltrates found in tumor beds and the lack of efficacy of adoptively transferred NK cells in patients. However, several preclinical evidences suggest their anti-metastatic role in a variety of mouse tumor models. In the present review, we discuss NK cell functions according to their maturation stage and environmental milieu, the receptor/ligand interactions dictating tumor cell recognition and recapitulate translational studies aimed at deciphering their prognostic or predictive role against human solid malignancies. PMID:23269924

  14. Natural killer cells in non-hematopoietic malignancies.

    PubMed

    Desbois, Mélanie; Rusakiewicz, Sylvie; Locher, Clara; Zitvogel, Laurence; Chaput, Nathalie

    2012-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells belong to the innate immune system and were initially described functionallywise by their spontaneous cytotoxic potential against transformed or virus-infected cells. A delicate balance between activating and inhibiting receptors regulates NK cell tolerance. A better understanding of tissue resident NK cells, of NK cell maturation stages and migration patterns has evolved allowing a thoughtful evaluation of their modus operandi. While evidence has been brought up for their relevance as gate keepers in some hematopoietic malignancies, the role of NK cells against progression and dissemination of solid tumors remains questionable. Hence, many studies pointed out the functional defects of the rare NK cell infiltrates found in tumor beds and the lack of efficacy of adoptively transferred NK cells in patients. However, several preclinical evidences suggest their anti-metastatic role in a variety of mouse tumor models. In the present review, we discuss NK cell functions according to their maturation stage and environmental milieu, the receptor/ligand interactions dictating tumor cell recognition and recapitulate translational studies aimed at deciphering their prognostic or predictive role against human solid malignancies. PMID:23269924

  15. Determination of natural killer cell function by flow cytometry.

    PubMed Central

    Kane, K L; Ashton, F A; Schmitz, J L; Folds, J D

    1996-01-01

    Natural killer cells (NK cells) are a subset of peripheral blood lymphocytes that mediate non-major histocompatibility complex-restricted cytotoxicity of foreign target cells. The "gold standard" assay for NK cell activity has been the chromium release assay. This method is not easily performed in the clinical laboratory because of difficulties with disposal of radioactive and hazardous materials, short reagent half-lives, expense, and difficulties with assay standardization. We describe a flow cytometric assay for the clinical measurement of NK cell activity. This study compared the chromium release assay and the flow cytometric assay by using clinically relevant specimens. There were no significant differences between the two assays in the measurement of lytic activity for 17 peripheral blood specimens or in reproducibility in repeated samplings of healthy individuals. We also established a normal range of values for NK activity in healthy adults and identified a small cluster of individuals who have exceptionally high or low levels of NK activity. The flow cytometric assay was validated by testing specimens from subjects expected to have abnormally low levels of NK activity (pregnant women) and specimens from healthy individuals in whom the activity of NK cells was enhanced by exposure to interleukin-2 or alpha interferon. Treatment with these agents was associated with a significant increase in NK activity. These results confirm and extend those of others, showing that the flow cytometric assay is a viable alternative to the chromium release assay for measuring NK cell activity. PMID:8705672

  16. Human Immunodeficiency Syndromes Affecting Human Natural Killer Cell Cytolytic Activity

    PubMed Central

    Ham, Hyoungjun; Billadeau, Daniel D.

    2013-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells are lymphocytes of the innate immune system that secrete cytokines upon activation and mediate the killing of tumor cells and virus-infected cells, especially those that escape the adaptive T cell response caused by the down regulation of MHC-I. The induction of cytotoxicity requires that NK cells contact target cells through adhesion receptors, and initiate activation signaling leading to increased adhesion and accumulation of F-actin at the NK cell cytotoxic synapse. Concurrently, lytic granules undergo minus-end directed movement and accumulate at the microtubule-organizing center through the interaction with microtubule motor proteins, followed by polarization of the lethal cargo toward the target cell. Ultimately, myosin-dependent movement of the lytic granules toward the NK cell plasma membrane through F-actin channels, along with soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor-dependent fusion, promotes the release of the lytic granule contents into the cleft between the NK cell and target cell resulting in target cell killing. Herein, we will discuss several disease-causing mutations in primary immunodeficiency syndromes and how they impact NK cell-mediated killing by disrupting distinct steps of this tightly regulated process. PMID:24478771

  17. Involvement of LSECtin in the hepatic natural killer cell response.

    PubMed

    Yang, Juntao; Wang, He; Wang, Min; Liu, Biao; Xu, Hui; Xu, Feng; Zhao, Dianyuan; Hu, Bin; Zhao, Na; Wang, Junyi; Liu, Di; Tang, Li; He, Fuchu

    2016-07-15

    Accumulating evidence has indicated that natural killer cells (NK cells) play an important role in immune responses generated in the liver. However, the underlying molecular basis for local immune regulation is poorly understood. Mice were intraperitoneally injected with polyinosinic-polycytidylic acid (PolyI:C) at a dose of 20 mg/kg body wt. The percentage and absolute number of NK cells in the liver were analysed with flow cytometry. LSECtin knockout mice and LSECtin cDNA plasmids were used for analyze the role of LSECtin in hepatic NK cell regulation in vivo. Here, we show that the C-type lectin LSECtin, a member of the DC-SIGN family, is a novel liver regulator for NK cells. LSECtin could bind to NK cells in a carbohydrate-dependent manner and could regulate the number of hepatic NK cells. In the NK cell-mediated acute liver injury model induced with PolyI:C, the exogenous expression of LSECtin accelerated NK cell-induced liver injury, whereas the absence of LSECtin ameliorated this condition. Our results reveal that LSECtin is a novel, liver-specific NK cell regulator that may be a target for the treatment of inflammatory diseases in the liver. PMID:27184407

  18. Multiplicity and plasticity of natural killer cell signaling pathways

    PubMed Central

    Chiesa, Sabrina; Mingueneau, Michael; Fuseri, Nicolas; Malissen, Bernard; Raulet, David H.; Malissen, Marie; Vivier, Eric; Tomasello, Elena

    2006-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells express an array of activating receptors that associate with DAP12 (KARAP), CD3ζ, and/or FcRγ ITAM (immunoreceptor tyrosine-based activation motif)–bearing signaling subunits. In T and mast cells, ITAM-dependent signals are integrated by critical scaffolding elements such as LAT (linker for activation of T cells) and NTAL (non–T-cell activation linker). Using mice that are deficient for ITAM-bearing molecules, LAT or NTAL, we show that NK cell cytotoxicity and interferon-γ secretion are initiated by ITAM-dependent and -independent as well as LAT/NTAL-dependent and -independent pathways. The role of these various signaling circuits depends on the target cell as well as on the activation status of the NK cell. The multiplicity and the plasticity of the pathways that initiate NK cell effector functions contrast with the situation in T cells and B cells and provide an explanation for the resiliency of NK cell effector functions to various pharmacologic inhibitors and genetic mutations in signaling molecules. PMID:16291591

  19. Clinical production and therapeutic applications of alloreactive natural killer cells.

    PubMed

    McKenna, David H; Kadidlo, Diane M; Cooley, Sarah; Miller, Jeffrey S

    2012-01-01

    Recent advances have improved our understanding of natural killer (NK) cell-mediated alloreactivity after hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) or with adoptive transfer. NK cells contribute to a graft-versus-leukemia effect and may play a role in preventing graft-versus-host disease or controlling infectious diseases after allogeneic HCT. New discoveries in NK cell biology, including characterization of NK cell receptors and their interactions with self-HLA molecules and a better understanding of the mechanism of NK cell education have led to the development of novel strategies to exploit NK cell alloreactivity against tumors. While early studies using autologous NK cells lacked efficacy, the use of adoptively transferred NK cells to treat hematopoietic malignancies has been expanding. The production of allogeneic donor NK cells requires efficient removal of T- and B cells from clinical-scale leukapheresis collections. The goal of this chapter is to review NK cell biology, NK cell receptors, the use of NK cells as therapy and then to discuss the clinical decisions resulting in our current good manufacturing practices processing and activation of human NK cells for therapeutic use. PMID:22665252

  20. Insights into the paracrine effects of uterine natural killer cells

    PubMed Central

    GONG, XIN; LIU, YANXIA; CHEN, ZHENZHEN; XU, CAI; LU, QIUDAN; JIN, ZHE

    2014-01-01

    Uterine natural killer (uNK) cells are recruited into the uterus during establishment of the implantation and placentation of the embryo, and are hypothesized to regulate uterine spiral artery remodeling and angiogenesis during the initial stages of pregnancy. Failures in uNK cell activation are linked to diseases associated with pregnancy. However, the manner in which these cells interact with the endometrium remain unknown. Therefore, this study investigated the paracrine effects of uNK cells on the gene expression profile of an endometrial epithelial and stromal cell co-culture system in vitro, using a microarray analysis. Results from reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay experiments showed that soluble factors from uNK cells significantly alter endometrial gene expression. In conclusion, this study suggests that paracrine effects of uNK cells guide uNK cell proliferation, trophoblast migration, endometrial decidualization and angiogenesis, and maintain non-cytotoxicity of uNK cells. PMID:25310696

  1. Molecular Programming of Immunological Memory in Natural Killer Cells.

    PubMed

    Beaulieu, Aimee M; Madera, Sharline; Sun, Joseph C

    2015-01-01

    Immunological memory is a hallmark of the adaptive immune system. Although natural killer (NK) cells have traditionally been classified as a component of the innate immune system, they have recently been shown in mice and humans to exhibit certain features of immunological memory, including an ability to undergo a clonal-like expansion during virus infection, generate long-lived progeny (i.e. memory cells), and mediate recall responses against previously encountered pathogens--all characteristics previously ascribed only to adaptive immune responses by B and T cells in mammals. To date, the molecular events that govern the generation of NK cell memory are not completely understood. Using a mouse model of cytomegalovirus infection, we demonstrate that individual pro-inflammatory IL-12, IL-18, and type I-IFN signaling pathways are indispensible and play non-redundant roles in the generation of virus-specific NK cell memory. Furthermore, we discovered that antigen-specific proliferation and protection by NK cells is mediated by the transcription factor Zbtb32, which is induced by pro-inflammatory cytokines and promotes a cell cycle program in activated NK cells. A greater understanding of the molecular mechanisms controlling NK cell responses will provide novel strategies for tailoring vaccines to target infectious disease. PMID:26324348

  2. Neoadjuvant immunotherapy enhances radiosensitivity through natural killer cell activation.

    PubMed

    Chi, Chau-Hwa; Wang, Yu-Shan; Yang, Chieh-Han; Chi, Kwan-Hwa

    2010-02-01

    We investigated whether natural killer (NK) cells in the tumor microenvironment have a radiosensitization effect. The radiosensitization effect of combined CpG and Herceptin((R)) (Genentech, Inc., South San Francisco, CA) (CpG/Herceptin), given before or after radiation, was evaluated by using a murine colon cancer cell line overexpressing human HER2/neu, CT26HER2/neu. In vitro radiosensitization effects were investigated by coculture of CT26HER2/neu with splenocytes, CpG, and Herceptin before applying radiation. Tumor cells, cocultured with CpG-pretreated splenocytes and Herceptin, were more vulnerable to radiation damage. In BALB/c mice injected with CT26HER2/neu, CpG/Herceptin administered before radiotherapy was associated with a better retardation of tumor growth than when administered after radiotherapy. The radiosensitization effect was significantly abrogated by NK-cell depletion, indicating that NK cells play an essential role in it. Further, surviving mice treated with CpG or CpG/Herceptin and reverse transcriptase were resistant to renewed tumor challenge, suggesting the presence of an induced immune response to the tumor. Neoadjuvant immunotherapy with CpG/Herceptin may improve response to radiotherapy of HER2/neu-expressing tumors. PMID:20187795

  3. Natural Killer Cell Immunotherapy: From Bench to Bedside.

    PubMed

    Domogala, Anna; Madrigal, J Alejandro; Saudemont, Aurore

    2015-01-01

    The potential of natural killer (NK) cells to target numerous malignancies in vitro has been well documented; however, only limited success has been seen in the clinic. Although NK cells prove non-toxic and safe regardless of the cell numbers injected, there is often little persistence and expansion observed in a patient, which is vital for mounting an effective cellular response. NK cells can be isolated directly from peripheral blood, umbilical cord blood, or bone marrow, expanded in vitro using cytokines or differentiated in vitro from hematopoietic stem cells. Drugs that support NK cell function such as lenalidomide and bortezomib have also been studied in the clinic, however, the optimum combination, which can vary among different malignancies, is yet to be identified. NK cell proliferation, persistence, and function can further be improved by various activation techniques such as priming and cytokine addition though whether stimulation pre- or post-injection is more favorable is another obstacle to be tackled. Here, we review the various methods of obtaining and activating NK cells for use in the clinic while considering the ideal product and drug complement for the most successful cellular therapy. PMID:26089820

  4. Natural Killer Cell Immunotherapy: From Bench to Bedside

    PubMed Central

    Domogala, Anna; Madrigal, J. Alejandro; Saudemont, Aurore

    2015-01-01

    The potential of natural killer (NK) cells to target numerous malignancies in vitro has been well documented; however, only limited success has been seen in the clinic. Although NK cells prove non-toxic and safe regardless of the cell numbers injected, there is often little persistence and expansion observed in a patient, which is vital for mounting an effective cellular response. NK cells can be isolated directly from peripheral blood, umbilical cord blood, or bone marrow, expanded in vitro using cytokines or differentiated in vitro from hematopoietic stem cells. Drugs that support NK cell function such as lenalidomide and bortezomib have also been studied in the clinic, however, the optimum combination, which can vary among different malignancies, is yet to be identified. NK cell proliferation, persistence, and function can further be improved by various activation techniques such as priming and cytokine addition though whether stimulation pre- or post-injection is more favorable is another obstacle to be tackled. Here, we review the various methods of obtaining and activating NK cells for use in the clinic while considering the ideal product and drug complement for the most successful cellular therapy. PMID:26089820

  5. Utilizing Chimeric Antigen Receptors to Direct Natural Killer Cell Activity

    PubMed Central

    Hermanson, David L.; Kaufman, Dan S.

    2015-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells represent an attractive lymphocyte population for cancer immunotherapy due to their ability to lyse tumor targets without prior sensitization and without need for human leukocyte antigens-matching. Chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) are able to enhance lymphocyte targeting and activation toward diverse malignancies. CARs consist of an external recognition domain (typically a small chain variable fragment) directed at a specific tumor antigen that is linked with one or more intracellular signaling domains that mediate lymphocyte activation. Most CAR studies have focused on their expression in T cells. However, use of CARs in NK cells is starting to gain traction because they provide a method to redirect these cells more specifically to target refractory cancers. CAR-mediated anti-tumor activity has been demonstrated using NK cell lines, as well as NK cells isolated from peripheral blood, and NK cells produced from human pluripotent stem cells. This review will outline the CAR constructs that have been reported in NK cells with a focus on comparing the use of different signaling domains in combination with other co-activating domains. PMID:25972867

  6. Analyzing Antigen Recognition by Natural Killer T Cells

    PubMed Central

    Zeissig, Sebastian; Olszak, Torsten; Melum, Espen; Blumberg, Richard S.

    2013-01-01

    Natural Killer T (NKT) cells are a subset of T lymphocytes that recognize a wide variety of lipid antigens presented by CD1 molecules. NKT cells exhibit rapid activation after recognition of cognate antigens, secrete abundant amounts of T helper (Th) 1, Th2, and Th17 cytokines within hours of activation and shape the immune response through subsequent activation of dendritic, NK, T and B cells. NKT cells therefore play central roles in antimicrobial and anticancer immunity and in modulation of various autoimmune disorders. Consequently, recent research has focused on the discovery of microbial and self-antigens involved in NKT cell activation. In this chapter, we discuss different strategies for studying antigen recognition by NKT cells including CD1d tetramer-based approaches and in vitro assays characterizing NKT cell activation in response to lipid antigen presentation. While toll-like receptor (TLR) agonists and cytokines such as IL-12 are critical for NKT cell activation in vivo, particularly in the context of microbial infection, methods for detection of TLR- and cytokine-dependent NKT cell activation will not be discussed in this section. PMID:23329514

  7. Id2 regulates hyporesponsive invariant natural killer T cells

    PubMed Central

    Stradner, Martin H; Cheung, Kitty P; Lasorella, Anna; Goldrath, Ananda W; D’Cruz, Louise M

    2016-01-01

    While the invariant natural killer T (iNKT)-cell response to primary stimulation with the glycolipid, α-galactosylceramide (αGalCer), is robust, the secondary response to this stimulus is muted resulting in a hyporesponsive state characterized by anti-inflammatory interleukin-10 (IL-10) production and high expression of programmed cell death 1 (PD1) and neuropilin 1 (NRP1). The E protein transcription factors and their negative regulators, the Id proteins, have previously been shown to regulate iNKT cell thymic development, subset differentiation and peripheral survival. Here, we provide evidence that the expression of the transcriptional regulator Id2 is downregulated upon stimulation of iNKT cells with their cognate antigen. Moreover, loss of Id2 expression by iNKT cells resulted in a hyporesponsive state, with splenic Id2-deficient iNKT cells expressing low levels of TBET, high levels of PD1 and NRP1 and production of IL-10 upon stimulation. We propose that downregulation of Id2 expression is an essential component of induction of the anti-inflammatory, hyporesponsive state in iNKT cells. PMID:26880074

  8. Understanding of molecular mechanisms in natural killer cell therapy

    PubMed Central

    Yoon, Suk Ran; Kim, Tae-Don; Choi, Inpyo

    2015-01-01

    Cancer cells and the immune system are closely related and thus influence each other. Although immune cells can suppress cancer cell growth, cancer cells can evade immune cell attack via immune escape mechanisms. Natural killer (NK) cells kill cancer cells by secreting perforins and granzymes. Upon contact with cancer cells, NK cells form immune synapses to deliver the lethal hit. Mature NK cells are differentiated from hematopoietic stem cells in the bone marrow. They move to lymph nodes, where they are activated through interactions with dendritic cells. Interleukin-15 (IL-15) is a key molecule that activates mature NK cells. The adoptive transfer of NK cells to treat incurable cancer is an attractive approach. A certain number of activated NK cells are required for adoptive NK cell therapy. To prepare these NK cells, mature NK cells can be amplified to obtain sufficient numbers of NK cells. Alternatively, NK cells can be differentiated and amplified from hematopoietic stem cells. In addition, the selection of donors is important to achieve maximal efficacy. In this review, we discuss the overall procedures and strategies of NK cell therapy against cancer. PMID:25676064

  9. Natural killer cell mediated cytotoxic responses in the Tasmanian devil.

    PubMed

    Brown, Gabriella K; Kreiss, Alexandre; Lyons, A Bruce; Woods, Gregory M

    2011-01-01

    The Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii), the world's largest marsupial carnivore, is under threat of extinction following the emergence of an infectious cancer. Devil facial tumour disease (DFTD) is spread between Tasmanian devils during biting. The disease is consistently fatal and devils succumb without developing a protective immune response. The aim of this study was to determine if Tasmanian devils were capable of forming cytotoxic antitumour responses and develop antibodies against DFTD cells and foreign tumour cells. The two Tasmanian devils immunised with irradiated DFTD cells did not form cytotoxic or humoral responses against DFTD cells, even after multiple immunisations. However, following immunisation with xenogenic K562 cells, devils did produce cytotoxic responses and antibodies against this foreign tumour cell line. The cytotoxicity appeared to occur through the activity of natural killer (NK) cells in an antibody dependent manner. Classical NK cell responses, such as innate killing of DFTD and foreign cancer cells, were not observed. Cells with an NK-like phenotype comprised approximately 4 percent of peripheral blood mononuclear cells. The results of this study suggest that Tasmanian devils have NK cells with functional cytotoxic pathways. Although devil NK cells do not directly recognise DFTD cancer cells, the development of antibody dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity presents a potential pathway to induce cytotoxic responses against the disease. These findings have positive implications for future DFTD vaccine research. PMID:21957452

  10. Type I natural killer T cells: naturally born for fighting

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Jin-quan; Xiao, Wei; Wang, Lan; He, Yu-ling

    2010-01-01

    Type І natural killer T cells (NKT cells), a subset of CD1d-restricted T cells with invariant Vαβ TCR, are characterized by prompt production of large amounts of Th1 and/or Th2 cytokines upon primary stimulation through the TCR complex. The rapid release of cytokines implies that type І NKT cells may play a critical role in modulating the upcoming immune responses, such as anti-tumor response, protection against infection, and autoimmunity. As a bridge between innate and adaptive immunity, type І NKT cells differentiate and mature upon stimulations to achieve and maintain a homeostasis. Orchestrating with other arms of adaptive immunity, type І NKT cells show strong cytotoxic effects in response to various tumors in a direct and/or indirect manner(s). This review will focus primarily on type І NKT cell development, homeostasis, and effector functions, especially in anti-tumor immunity, and followed by their potential applications in treatment of cancers. PMID:20694020

  11. Natural killer cells regulate eosinophilic inflammation in chronic rhinosinusitis.

    PubMed

    Kim, Ji Heui; Choi, Go Eun; Lee, Bong-Jae; Kwon, Seog Woon; Lee, Seung-Hyo; Kim, Hun Sik; Jang, Yong Ju

    2016-01-01

    Eosinophils play a major pathologic role in the pathogenesis of diverse inflammatory diseases including chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS). Dysregulated production of prostaglandin (PG), particularly PGD2, is considered to be an important contributing factor to eosinophilic inflammation in CRS primarily through proinflammatory and chemotactic effects on eosinophils. Here, we provide evidence that PGD2 can promote eosinophilic inflammation through a suppression of Natural killer (NK) cell effector function and NK cell-mediated eosinophil regulation. Eosinophil apoptosis mediated by NK cells was significantly decreased in CRS patients compared with healthy controls. This decrease was associated with NK cell dysfunction and eosinophilic inflammation. Tissue eosinophils were positively correlated with blood eosinophils in CRS patients. In a murine model of CRS, NK cell depletion caused an exacerbation of blood eosinophilia and eosinophilic inflammation in the sinonasal tissue. PGD2 and its metabolite, but not PGE2 and a panel of cytokines including TGF-β, were increased in CRS patients compared with controls. Effector functions of NK cells were potently suppressed by PGD2-dependent, rather than PGE2-dependent, pathway in controls and CRS patients. Thus, our results suggest decreased NK cell-mediated eosinophil regulation, possibly through an increased level of PGD2, as a previously unrecognized link between PG dysregulation and eosinophilic inflammation in CRS. PMID:27271931

  12. Pulmonary Extranodal Natural Killer/T-Cell Lymphoma (Nasal Type)

    PubMed Central

    Fei, Wang; Xiaohong, Wang; Hong, Zhu; Bei, He

    2015-01-01

    Abstract An 83-year-old woman presented with intermittent fever for 2 weeks. Chest radiography and computed tomography images showed multiple nodules and masses scattered in both lung fields. Tissue samples obtained by computed tomography-guided needle biopsy revealed extranodal natural killer/T-cell lymphoma (ENKL). The lung is the major site of involvement and the skin may be the primary site. The radiological imaging of this case is different from the cases reported before. Besides, we reviewed the medical records of our hospital and searched the Pubmed database and found 12 cases altogether (include the case presented), which were diagnosed with pulmonary ENKL, and the features of chest images were studied. To our knowledge, this is the first time that the chest imaging features of pulmonary ENKL were reviewed. We conclude that if the radiographic manifestations are multiple patchy consolidations or multiple nodules and masses in both lungs with or without bilateral pleural effusions, the diagnostic considerations should include ENKL. PMID:26402808

  13. Reprogramming microbes to be pathogen-seeking killers.

    PubMed

    Hwang, In Young; Tan, Mui Hua; Koh, Elvin; Ho, Chun Loong; Poh, Chueh Loo; Chang, Matthew Wook

    2014-04-18

    Recent examples of new genetic circuits that enable cells to acquire biosynthetic capabilities, such as specific pathogen killing, present an attractive therapeutic application of synthetic biology. Herein, we demonstrate a novel genetic circuit that reprograms Escherichia coli to specifically recognize, migrate toward, and eradicate both dispersed and biofilm-encased pathogenic Pseudomonas aeruginosa cells. The reprogrammed E. coli degraded the mature biofilm matrix and killed the latent cells encapsulated within by expressing and secreting the antimicrobial peptide microcin S and the nuclease DNaseI upon the detection of quorum sensing molecules naturally secreted by P. aeruginosa. Furthermore, the reprogrammed E. coli exhibited directed motility toward the pathogen through regulated expression of CheZ in response to the quorum sensing molecules. By integrating the pathogen-directed motility with the dual antimicrobial activity in E. coli, we achieved signifincantly improved killing activity against planktonic and mature biofilm cells due to target localization, thus creating an active pathogen seeking killer E. coli. PMID:24020906

  14. The nature and identification of quantitative trait loci

    PubMed Central

    2007-01-01

    This white paper by eighty members of the Complex Trait Consortium presents a community’s view on the approaches and statistical analyses that are needed for the identification of genetic loci that determine quantitative traits. Quantitative trait loci (QTLs) can be identified in several ways, but is there a definitive test of whether a candidate locus actually corresponds to a specific QTL? PMID:14634638

  15. Discovery and Refinement of Loci Associated with Lipid Levels

    PubMed Central

    Peloso, Gina M.; Gustafsson, Stefan; Kanoni, Stavroula; Ganna, Andrea; Chen, Jin; Buchkovich, Martin L.; Mora, Samia; Beckmann, Jacques S.; Bragg-Gresham, Jennifer L.; Chang, Hsing-Yi; Demirkan, Ayşe; Den Hertog, Heleen M.; Do, Ron; Donnelly, Louise A.; Ehret, Georg B.; Esko, Tõnu; Feitosa, Mary F.; Ferreira, Teresa; Fischer, Krista; Fontanillas, Pierre; Fraser, Ross M.; Freitag, Daniel F.; Gurdasani, Deepti; Heikkilä, Kauko; Hyppönen, Elina; Isaacs, Aaron; Jackson, Anne U.; Johansson, Åsa; Johnson, Toby; Kaakinen, Marika; Kettunen, Johannes; Kleber, Marcus E.; Li, Xiaohui; Luan, Jian’an; Lyytikäinen, Leo-Pekka; Magnusson, Patrik K.E.; Mangino, Massimo; Mihailov, Evelin; Montasser, May E.; Müller-Nurasyid, Martina; Nolte, Ilja M.; O’Connell, Jeffrey R.; Palmer, Cameron D.; Perola, Markus; Petersen, Ann-Kristin; Sanna, Serena; Saxena, Richa; Service, Susan K.; Shah, Sonia; Shungin, Dmitry; Sidore, Carlo; Song, Ci; Strawbridge, Rona J.; Surakka, Ida; Tanaka, Toshiko; Teslovich, Tanya M.; Thorleifsson, Gudmar; Van den Herik, Evita G.; Voight, Benjamin F.; Volcik, Kelly A.; Waite, Lindsay L.; Wong, Andrew; Wu, Ying; Zhang, Weihua; Absher, Devin; Asiki, Gershim; Barroso, Inês; Been, Latonya F.; Bolton, Jennifer L.; Bonnycastle, Lori L; Brambilla, Paolo; Burnett, Mary S.; Cesana, Giancarlo; Dimitriou, Maria; Doney, Alex S.F.; Döring, Angela; Elliott, Paul; Epstein, Stephen E.; Ingi Eyjolfsson, Gudmundur; Gigante, Bruna; Goodarzi, Mark O.; Grallert, Harald; Gravito, Martha L.; Groves, Christopher J.; Hallmans, Göran; Hartikainen, Anna-Liisa; Hayward, Caroline; Hernandez, Dena; Hicks, Andrew A.; Holm, Hilma; Hung, Yi-Jen; Illig, Thomas; Jones, Michelle R.; Kaleebu, Pontiano; Kastelein, John J.P.; Khaw, Kay-Tee; Kim, Eric; Klopp, Norman; Komulainen, Pirjo; Kumari, Meena; Langenberg, Claudia; Lehtimäki, Terho; Lin, Shih-Yi; Lindström, Jaana; Loos, Ruth J.F.; Mach, François; McArdle, Wendy L; Meisinger, Christa; Mitchell, Braxton D.; Müller, Gabrielle; Nagaraja, Ramaiah; Narisu, Narisu; Nieminen, Tuomo V.M.; Nsubuga, Rebecca N.; Olafsson, Isleifur; Ong, Ken K.; Palotie, Aarno; Papamarkou, Theodore; Pomilla, Cristina; Pouta, Anneli; Rader, Daniel J.; Reilly, Muredach P.; Ridker, Paul M.; Rivadeneira, Fernando; Rudan, Igor; Ruokonen, Aimo; Samani, Nilesh; Scharnagl, Hubert; Seeley, Janet; Silander, Kaisa; Stančáková, Alena; Stirrups, Kathleen; Swift, Amy J.; Tiret, Laurence; Uitterlinden, Andre G.; van Pelt, L. Joost; Vedantam, Sailaja; Wainwright, Nicholas; Wijmenga, Cisca; Wild, Sarah H.; Willemsen, Gonneke; Wilsgaard, Tom; Wilson, James F.; Young, Elizabeth H.; Zhao, Jing Hua; Adair, Linda S.; Arveiler, Dominique; Assimes, Themistocles L.; Bandinelli, Stefania; Bennett, Franklyn; Bochud, Murielle; Boehm, Bernhard O.; Boomsma, Dorret I.; Borecki, Ingrid B.; Bornstein, Stefan R.; Bovet, Pascal; Burnier, Michel; Campbell, Harry; Chakravarti, Aravinda; Chambers, John C.; Chen, Yii-Der Ida; Collins, Francis S.; Cooper, Richard S.; Danesh, John; Dedoussis, George; de Faire, Ulf; Feranil, Alan B.; Ferrières, Jean; Ferrucci, Luigi; Freimer, Nelson B.; Gieger, Christian; Groop, Leif C.; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Gyllensten, Ulf; Hamsten, Anders; Harris, Tamara B.; Hingorani, Aroon; Hirschhorn, Joel N.; Hofman, Albert; Hovingh, G. Kees; Hsiung, Chao Agnes; Humphries, Steve E.; Hunt, Steven C.; Hveem, Kristian; Iribarren, Carlos; Järvelin, Marjo-Riitta; Jula, Antti; Kähönen, Mika; Kaprio, Jaakko; Kesäniemi, Antero; Kivimaki, Mika; Kooner, Jaspal S.; Koudstaal, Peter J.; Krauss, Ronald M.; Kuh, Diana; Kuusisto, Johanna; Kyvik, Kirsten O.; Laakso, Markku; Lakka, Timo A.; Lind, Lars; Lindgren, Cecilia M.; Martin, Nicholas G.; März, Winfried; McCarthy, Mark I.; McKenzie, Colin A.; Meneton, Pierre; Metspalu, Andres; Moilanen, Leena; Morris, Andrew D.; Munroe, Patricia B.; Njølstad, Inger; Pedersen, Nancy L.; Power, Chris; Pramstaller, Peter P.; Price, Jackie F.; Psaty, Bruce M.; Quertermous, Thomas; Rauramaa, Rainer; Saleheen, Danish; Salomaa, Veikko; Sanghera, Dharambir K.; Saramies, Jouko; Schwarz, Peter E.H.; Sheu, Wayne H-H; Shuldiner, Alan R.; Siegbahn, Agneta; Spector, Tim D.; Stefansson, Kari; Strachan, David P.; Tayo, Bamidele O.; Tremoli, Elena; Tuomilehto, Jaakko; Uusitupa, Matti; van Duijn, Cornelia M.; Vollenweider, Peter; Wallentin, Lars; Wareham, Nicholas J.; Whitfield, John B.; Wolffenbuttel, Bruce H.R.; Ordovas, Jose M.; Boerwinkle, Eric; Palmer, Colin N.A.; Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur; Chasman, Daniel I.; Rotter, Jerome I.; Franks, Paul W.; Ripatti, Samuli; Cupples, L. Adrienne; Sandhu, Manjinder S.; Rich, Stephen S.

    2013-01-01

    Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, triglycerides, and total cholesterol are heritable, modifiable, risk factors for coronary artery disease. To identify new loci and refine known loci influencing these lipids, we examined 188,578 individuals using genome-wide and custom genotyping arrays. We identify and annotate 157 loci associated with lipid levels at P < 5×10−8, including 62 loci not previously associated with lipid levels in humans. Using dense genotyping in individuals of European, East Asian, South Asian, and African ancestry, we narrow association signals in 12 loci. We find that loci associated with blood lipids are often associated with cardiovascular and metabolic traits including coronary artery disease, type 2 diabetes, blood pressure, waist-hip ratio, and body mass index. Our results illustrate the value of genetic data from individuals of diverse ancestries and provide insights into biological mechanisms regulating blood lipids to guide future genetic, biological, and therapeutic research. PMID:24097068

  16. Escherichia coli Chromosomal Loci Segregate from Midcell with Universal Dynamics.

    PubMed

    Cass, Julie A; Kuwada, Nathan J; Traxler, Beth; Wiggins, Paul A

    2016-06-21

    The structure of the Escherichia coli chromosome is inherently dynamic over the duration of the cell cycle. Genetic loci undergo both stochastic motion around their initial positions and directed motion to opposite poles of the rod-shaped cell during segregation. We developed a quantitative method to characterize cell-cycle dynamics of the E. coli chromosome to probe the chromosomal steady-state mobility and segregation process. By tracking fluorescently labeled chromosomal loci in thousands of cells throughout the entire cell cycle, our method allows for the statistical analysis of locus position and motion, the step-size distribution for movement during segregation, and the locus drift velocity. The robust statistics of our detailed analysis of the wild-type E. coli nucleoid allow us to observe loci moving toward midcell before segregation occurs, consistent with a replication factory model. Then, as segregation initiates, we perform a detailed characterization of the average segregation velocity of loci. Contrary to origin-centric models of segregation, which predict distinct dynamics for oriC-proximal versus oriC-distal loci, we find that the dynamics of loci were universal and independent of genetic position. PMID:27332118

  17. Discovery and refinement of loci associated with lipid levels.

    PubMed

    Willer, Cristen J; Schmidt, Ellen M; Sengupta, Sebanti; Peloso, Gina M; Gustafsson, Stefan; Kanoni, Stavroula; Ganna, Andrea; Chen, Jin; Buchkovich, Martin L; Mora, Samia; Beckmann, Jacques S; Bragg-Gresham, Jennifer L; Chang, Hsing-Yi; Demirkan, Ayşe; Den Hertog, Heleen M; Do, Ron; Donnelly, Louise A; Ehret, Georg B; Esko, Tõnu; Feitosa, Mary F; Ferreira, Teresa; Fischer, Krista; Fontanillas, Pierre; Fraser, Ross M; Freitag, Daniel F; Gurdasani, Deepti; Heikkilä, Kauko; Hyppönen, Elina; Isaacs, Aaron; Jackson, Anne U; Johansson, Asa; Johnson, Toby; Kaakinen, Marika; Kettunen, Johannes; Kleber, Marcus E; Li, Xiaohui; Luan, Jian'an; Lyytikäinen, Leo-Pekka; Magnusson, Patrik K E; Mangino, Massimo; Mihailov, Evelin; Montasser, May E; Müller-Nurasyid, Martina; Nolte, Ilja M; O'Connell, Jeffrey R; Palmer, Cameron D; Perola, Markus; Petersen, Ann-Kristin; Sanna, Serena; Saxena, Richa; Service, Susan K; Shah, Sonia; Shungin, Dmitry; Sidore, Carlo; Song, Ci; Strawbridge, Rona J; Surakka, Ida; Tanaka, Toshiko; Teslovich, Tanya M; Thorleifsson, Gudmar; Van den Herik, Evita G; Voight, Benjamin F; Volcik, Kelly A; Waite, Lindsay L; Wong, Andrew; Wu, Ying; Zhang, Weihua; Absher, Devin; Asiki, Gershim; Barroso, Inês; Been, Latonya F; Bolton, Jennifer L; Bonnycastle, Lori L; Brambilla, Paolo; Burnett, Mary S; Cesana, Giancarlo; Dimitriou, Maria; Doney, Alex S F; Döring, Angela; Elliott, Paul; Epstein, Stephen E; Eyjolfsson, Gudmundur Ingi; Gigante, Bruna; Goodarzi, Mark O; Grallert, Harald; Gravito, Martha L; Groves, Christopher J; Hallmans, Göran; Hartikainen, Anna-Liisa; Hayward, Caroline; Hernandez, Dena; Hicks, Andrew A; Holm, Hilma; Hung, Yi-Jen; Illig, Thomas; Jones, Michelle R; Kaleebu, Pontiano; Kastelein, John J P; Khaw, Kay-Tee; Kim, Eric; Klopp, Norman; Komulainen, Pirjo; Kumari, Meena; Langenberg, Claudia; Lehtimäki, Terho; Lin, Shih-Yi; Lindström, Jaana; Loos, Ruth J F; Mach, François; McArdle, Wendy L; Meisinger, Christa; Mitchell, Braxton D; Müller, Gabrielle; Nagaraja, Ramaiah; Narisu, Narisu; Nieminen, Tuomo V M; Nsubuga, Rebecca N; Olafsson, Isleifur; Ong, Ken K; Palotie, Aarno; Papamarkou, Theodore; Pomilla, Cristina; Pouta, Anneli; Rader, Daniel J; Reilly, Muredach P; Ridker, Paul M; Rivadeneira, Fernando; Rudan, Igor; Ruokonen, Aimo; Samani, Nilesh; Scharnagl, Hubert; Seeley, Janet; Silander, Kaisa; Stancáková, Alena; Stirrups, Kathleen; Swift, Amy J; Tiret, Laurence; Uitterlinden, Andre G; van Pelt, L Joost; Vedantam, Sailaja; Wainwright, Nicholas; Wijmenga, Cisca; Wild, Sarah H; Willemsen, Gonneke; Wilsgaard, Tom; Wilson, James F; Young, Elizabeth H; Zhao, Jing Hua; Adair, Linda S; Arveiler, Dominique; Assimes, Themistocles L; Bandinelli, Stefania; Bennett, Franklyn; Bochud, Murielle; Boehm, Bernhard O; Boomsma, Dorret I; Borecki, Ingrid B; Bornstein, Stefan R; Bovet, Pascal; Burnier, Michel; Campbell, Harry; Chakravarti, Aravinda; Chambers, John C; Chen, Yii-Der Ida; Collins, Francis S; Cooper, Richard S; Danesh, John; Dedoussis, George; de Faire, Ulf; Feranil, Alan B; Ferrières, Jean; Ferrucci, Luigi; Freimer, Nelson B; Gieger, Christian; Groop, Leif C; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Gyllensten, Ulf; Hamsten, Anders; Harris, Tamara B; Hingorani, Aroon; Hirschhorn, Joel N; Hofman, Albert; Hovingh, G Kees; Hsiung, Chao Agnes; Humphries, Steve E; Hunt, Steven C; Hveem, Kristian; Iribarren, Carlos; Järvelin, Marjo-Riitta; Jula, Antti; Kähönen, Mika; Kaprio, Jaakko; Kesäniemi, Antero; Kivimaki, Mika; Kooner, Jaspal S; Koudstaal, Peter J; Krauss, Ronald M; Kuh, Diana; Kuusisto, Johanna; Kyvik, Kirsten O; Laakso, Markku; Lakka, Timo A; Lind, Lars; Lindgren, Cecilia M; Martin, Nicholas G; März, Winfried; McCarthy, Mark I; McKenzie, Colin A; Meneton, Pierre; Metspalu, Andres; Moilanen, Leena; Morris, Andrew D; Munroe, Patricia B; Njølstad, Inger; Pedersen, Nancy L; Power, Chris; Pramstaller, Peter P; Price, Jackie F; Psaty, Bruce M; Quertermous, Thomas; Rauramaa, Rainer; Saleheen, Danish; Salomaa, Veikko; Sanghera, Dharambir K; Saramies, Jouko; Schwarz, Peter E H; Sheu, Wayne H-H; Shuldiner, Alan R; Siegbahn, Agneta; Spector, Tim D; Stefansson, Kari; Strachan, David P; Tayo, Bamidele O; Tremoli, Elena; Tuomilehto, Jaakko; Uusitupa, Matti; van Duijn, Cornelia M; Vollenweider, Peter; Wallentin, Lars; Wareham, Nicholas J; Whitfield, John B; Wolffenbuttel, Bruce H R; Ordovas, Jose M; Boerwinkle, Eric; Palmer, Colin N A; Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur; Chasman, Daniel I; Rotter, Jerome I; Franks, Paul W; Ripatti, Samuli; Cupples, L Adrienne; Sandhu, Manjinder S; Rich, Stephen S; Boehnke, Michael; Deloukas, Panos; Kathiresan, Sekar; Mohlke, Karen L; Ingelsson, Erik; Abecasis, Gonçalo R

    2013-11-01

    Levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, triglycerides and total cholesterol are heritable, modifiable risk factors for coronary artery disease. To identify new loci and refine known loci influencing these lipids, we examined 188,577 individuals using genome-wide and custom genotyping arrays. We identify and annotate 157 loci associated with lipid levels at P < 5 × 10(-8), including 62 loci not previously associated with lipid levels in humans. Using dense genotyping in individuals of European, East Asian, South Asian and African ancestry, we narrow association signals in 12 loci. We find that loci associated with blood lipid levels are often associated with cardiovascular and metabolic traits, including coronary artery disease, type 2 diabetes, blood pressure, waist-hip ratio and body mass index. Our results demonstrate the value of using genetic data from individuals of diverse ancestry and provide insights into the biological mechanisms regulating blood lipids to guide future genetic, biological and therapeutic research. PMID:24097068

  18. Physical Modeling of Dynamic Coupling between Chromosomal Loci.

    PubMed

    Lampo, Thomas J; Kennard, Andrew S; Spakowitz, Andrew J

    2016-01-19

    The motion of chromosomal DNA is essential to many biological processes, including segregation, transcriptional regulation, recombination, and packaging. Physical understanding of these processes would be dramatically enhanced through predictive, quantitative modeling of chromosome dynamics of multiple loci. Using a polymer dynamics framework, we develop a prediction for the correlation in the velocities of two loci on a single chromosome or otherwise connected by chromatin. These predictions reveal that the signature of correlated motion between two loci can be identified by varying the lag time between locus position measurements. In general, this theory predicts that as the lag time interval increases, the dual-loci dynamic behavior transitions from being completely uncorrelated to behaving as an effective single locus. This transition corresponds to the timescale of the stress communication between loci through the intervening segment. This relatively simple framework makes quantitative predictions based on a single timescale fit parameter that can be directly compared to the in vivo motion of fluorescently labeled chromosome loci. Furthermore, this theoretical framework enables the detection of dynamically coupled chromosome regions from the signature of their correlated motion. PMID:26789757

  19. The direct effects of male killer infection on fitness of ladybird hosts (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae).

    PubMed

    Elnagdy, S; Majerus, M E N; Gardener, M; Lawson Handley, L-J

    2013-08-01

    Male killing bacteria are common in insects and are thought to persist in host populations primarily by indirect fitness benefits to infected females, whereas direct fitness effects are generally assumed to be neutral or deleterious. Here, we estimated the effect of male killer infection on direct fitness (number of eggs laid, as a measure of fecundity, together with survival) and other life-history traits (development time and body size) in seven ladybird host/male killer combinations. Effects of male killers on fecundity ranged, as expected, from costly to neutral; however, we found evidence of reduced development time and increased survival and body size in infected strains. Greater body size in Spiroplasma-infected Harmonia axyridis corresponded to greater ovariole number and therefore higher potential fecundity. To our knowledge, this is the first report of direct benefits of male killer infection after explicitly controlling for indirect fitness effects. Neutral or deleterious fitness effects of male killer infection should not therefore be automatically assumed. PMID:23869568

  20. Killer whale call frequency is similar across the oceans, but varies across sympatric ecotypes.

    PubMed

    Filatova, Olga A; Miller, Patrick J O; Yurk, Harald; Samarra, Filipa I P; Hoyt, Erich; Ford, John K B; Matkin, Craig O; Barrett-Lennard, Lance G

    2015-07-01

    Killer whale populations may differ in genetics, morphology, ecology, and behavior. In the North Pacific, two sympatric populations ("resident" and "transient") specialize on different prey (fish and marine mammals) and retain reproductive isolation. In the eastern North Atlantic, whales from the same populations have been observed feeding on both fish and marine mammals. Fish-eating North Pacific "residents" are more genetically related to eastern North Atlantic killer whales than to sympatric mammal-eating "transients." In this paper, a comparison of frequency variables in killer whale calls recorded from four North Pacific resident, two North Pacific transient, and two eastern North Atlantic populations is reported to assess which factors drive the large-scale changes in call structure. Both low-frequency and high-frequency components of North Pacific transient killer whale calls have significantly lower frequencies than those of the North Pacific resident and North Atlantic populations. The difference in frequencies could be related to ecological specialization or to the phylogenetic history of these populations. North Pacific transient killer whales may have genetically inherited predisposition toward lower frequencies that may shape their learned repertoires. PMID:26233024

  1. Linking killer whale survival and prey abundance: food limitation in the oceans' apex predator?

    PubMed

    Ford, John K B; Ellis, Graeme M; Olesiuk, Peter F; Balcomb, Kenneth C

    2010-02-23

    Killer whales (Orcinus orca) are large predators that occupy the top trophic position in the world's oceans and as such may have important roles in marine ecosystem dynamics. Although the possible top-down effects of killer whale predation on populations of their prey have received much recent attention, little is known of how the abundance of these predators may be limited by bottom-up processes. Here we show, using 25 years of demographic data from two populations of fish-eating killer whales in the northeastern Pacific Ocean, that population trends are driven largely by changes in survival, and that survival rates are strongly correlated with the availability of their principal prey species, Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha). Our results suggest that, although these killer whales may consume a variety of fish species, they are highly specialized and dependent on this single salmonid species to an extent that it is a limiting factor in their population dynamics. Other ecologically specialized killer whale populations may be similarly constrained to a narrow range of prey species by culturally inherited foraging strategies, and thus are limited in their ability to adapt rapidly to changing prey availability. PMID:19755531

  2. P-LOCI: a computer program for choosing the most efficient set of loci for parentage assignment

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Determining which and how many codominant marker loci are required for accurate parentage assignment is not straightforward because levels of marker polymorphism and linkage, allelic distributions among potential parents and other factors produce differences in the discriminatory power of individual...

  3. HPV vaccine stimulates cytotoxic activity of killer dendritic cells and natural killer cells against HPV-positive tumour cells

    PubMed Central

    Van den Bergh, Johan M J; Guerti, Khadija; Willemen, Yannick; Lion, Eva; Cools, Nathalie; Goossens, Herman; Vorsters, Alex; Van Tendeloo, Viggo F I; Anguille, Sébastien; Van Damme, Pierre; Smits, Evelien L J M

    2014-01-01

    Cervarix™ is approved as a preventive vaccine against infection with the human papillomavirus (HPV) strains 16 and 18, which are causally related to the development of cervical cancer. We are the first to investigate in vitro the effects of this HPV vaccine on interleukin (IL)-15 dendritic cells (DC) as proxy of a naturally occurring subset of blood DC, and natural killer (NK) cells, two innate immune cell types that play an important role in antitumour immunity. Our results show that exposure of IL-15 DC to the HPV vaccine results in increased expression of phenotypic maturation markers, pro-inflammatory cytokine production and cytotoxic activity against HPV-positive tumour cells. These effects are mediated by the vaccine adjuvant, partly through Toll-like receptor 4 activation. Next, we demonstrate that vaccine-exposed IL-15 DC in turn induce phenotypic activation of NK cells, resulting in a synergistic cytotoxic action against HPV-infected tumour cells. Our study thus identifies a novel mode of action of the HPV vaccine in boosting innate immunity, including killing of HPV-infected cells by DC and NK cells. PMID:24979331

  4. Functional impairment of natural killer cells in active ulcerative colitis: reversion of the defective natural killer activity by interleukin 2.

    PubMed Central

    Manzano, L; Alvarez-Mon, M; Abreu, L; Antonio Vargas, J; de la Morena, E; Corugedo, F; Duràntez, A

    1992-01-01

    We have studied the functional characteristics and clinical importance of the natural killer (NK) cytotoxicity of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMNC) from patients with ulcerative colitis. Normal NK activity was observed in PBMNC from patients with inactive disease, but a pronounced decrease was found in those with active disease. Clinical change from active to inactive disease was associated with enhancement of the depressed NK activity. The impairment of NK cytotoxicity found in patients with active disese could not be ascribed to a deficient number of NK cells as the amounts of HNK-1+, CD16+ (Leu 11), and CD11b (OKM1) cells in PBMNC were within normal ranges. This defective cytotoxic PBMNC activity was normalised by short term (18 hour) incubation with recombinant interleukin 2 (rIL-2). Moreover, long term (5 day) incubation of these effector cells with rIL-2 induced strong cytotoxic activity against NK resistant and NK sensitive target cells in patients with active and inactive disease. We also found that both precursors and effectors of cytotoxic activity promoted by short term and long term incubation with rIL-2 of PBMNC from the patients showed the phenotype of NK cells (CD16+, CD3-). Taken together, these results show that active ulcerative colitis is associated with a defective function of NK cells that is found to be normal in the inactive stage of the disease. The possible pathogenic and therapeutic implications of these findings are discussed. PMID:1541421

  5. The Cmv1 host resistance locus is closely linked to the Ly49 multigene family within the natural killer cell gene complex on mouse chromosome 6

    SciTech Connect

    Forbes, C.A.; Shellam, G.R.; Scalzo, A.A.

    1997-05-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells play important roles in controlling tumor cells and against a range of infectious organisms. Recent studies of mouse NK cell surface receptors, which may be involved in the specificity of NK cells, have shown that many of these molecules are encoded by the Ly49 and Ly55 (Nkrp1) multigene families that map to distal mouse chromosome 6. Also mapping to this NK cell gene complex (NKC) is the resistance locus, Cmv1, which is involved in genetically determined resistance to murine cytomegalovirus (MCMV). The aim of this study was to localize Cmv1 more precisely in relation to other NKC loci by generating a high-resolution genetic map of the region. We have analyzed 1250 backcross mice comprising panels of 700 (BALB/c x C57BL/6J)F{sub 1} X BALB/c and 550 (A/J X C57BL/6J)F{sub 1} X A/J progeny. A total of 25 polymorphic genes or microsatellite markers were analyzed over a region of 10 map units from D6Mit134 to D6Mit59. The Cmv1 phenotypes of mice recombinant in this interval were tested by infection with MCMV. The results obtained indicate that the functionally important NKC region is a tightly linked cluster of loci spanning at least 0.4 map units. Furthermore, Cmv1 maps distal to, but very closely linked to, the Ly49 multigene family (< 0.2 map units), suggesting that MCMV resistance may be conferred by MHC class I-specific NK cell receptors. 49 refs., 4 figs., 1 tab.

  6. Environmental isolates of fungi from aquarium pools housing killer whales (Orcinus orca).

    PubMed

    Kohata, Erina; Kano, Rui; Akune, Yuichiro; Ohno, Yoshito; Soichi, Makoto; Yanai, Tokuma; Hasegawa, Atsuhiko; Kamata, Hiroshi

    2013-12-01

    Systemic mycoses in killer whales (Orcinus orca) are rare diseases, but have been reported. Two killer whales died by fungal infections at the Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium in Japan. In this study, the fungal flora of the pool environment at the aquarium was characterized. Alternaria spp., Aspergillus spp. (A. fumigatus, A. niger, A. versicolor), Fusarium spp. and Penicillium spp. were isolated from the air and the pool surroundings. The other isolates were identified as fungal species non-pathogenic for mammals. However, the species of fungi isolated from the environmental samples in this study were not the same as those isolated from the cases of disease in killer whales previously reported. PMID:24045935

  7. Making the giant leap with augmented cognition technologies : what will be the first %22killer app?'.

    SciTech Connect

    Forsythe, James Chris

    2007-08-01

    This paper highlights key topic areas to be discussed the authors in a panel format during the Augmented Cognition thematic area paper session: 'Augmented Cognition Lessons Learned and Future Directions for Enabling 'Anyone, Anytime, Anywhere' Applications'. The term 'killer app' has been part of the vernacular in the commercial computer software and electronic devices industry to refer to breakthrough technologies [2]. A 'killer app' generally emerges with the development of related technologies that extends over some time and involves numerous variations on a basic concept. Hypotheses may be offered with respect to the conditions that will be needed to enable a similar situation with augmented cognition technologies. This paper and resulting panel session will address the numerous concepts that have emerged from the augmented cognition field to date and postulate how and when this field's first 'killer app' may emerge (e.g., 5, 10, 15, or more years from now).

  8. Multiple Loci Associated with Renal Function in African Americans

    PubMed Central

    Shriner, Daniel; Herbert, Alan; Doumatey, Ayo P.; Zhou, Jie; Huang, Hanxia; Erdos, Michael R.; Chen, Guanjie; Gerry, Norman P.; Christman, Michael F.; Adeyemo, Adebowale; Rotimi, Charles N.

    2012-01-01

    The incidence of chronic kidney disease varies by ethnic group in the USA, with African Americans displaying a two-fold higher rate than European Americans. One of the two defining variables underlying staging of chronic kidney disease is the glomerular filtration rate. Meta-analysis in individuals of European ancestry has identified 23 genetic loci associated with the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR). We conducted a follow-up study of these 23 genetic loci using a population-based sample of 1,018 unrelated admixed African Americans. We included in our follow-up study two variants in APOL1 associated with end-stage kidney disease discovered by admixture mapping in admixed African Americans. To address confounding due to admixture, we estimated local ancestry at each marker and global ancestry. We performed regression analysis stratified by local ancestry and combined the resulting regression estimates across ancestry strata using an inverse variance-weighted fixed effects model. We found that 11 of the 24 loci were significantly associated with eGFR in our sample. The effect size estimates were not significantly different between the subgroups of individuals with two copies of African ancestry vs. two copies of European ancestry for any of the 11 loci. In contrast, allele frequencies were significantly different at 10 of the 11 loci. Collectively, the 11 loci, including four secondary signals revealed by conditional analyses, explained 14.2% of the phenotypic variance in eGFR, in contrast to the 1.4% explained by the 24 loci in individuals of European ancestry. Our findings provide insight into the genetic basis of variation in renal function among admixed African Americans. PMID:23028791

  9. Multiple loci associated with renal function in African Americans.

    PubMed

    Shriner, Daniel; Herbert, Alan; Doumatey, Ayo P; Zhou, Jie; Huang, Hanxia; Erdos, Michael R; Chen, Guanjie; Gerry, Norman P; Christman, Michael F; Adeyemo, Adebowale; Rotimi, Charles N

    2012-01-01

    The incidence of chronic kidney disease varies by ethnic group in the USA, with African Americans displaying a two-fold higher rate than European Americans. One of the two defining variables underlying staging of chronic kidney disease is the glomerular filtration rate. Meta-analysis in individuals of European ancestry has identified 23 genetic loci associated with the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR). We conducted a follow-up study of these 23 genetic loci using a population-based sample of 1,018 unrelated admixed African Americans. We included in our follow-up study two variants in APOL1 associated with end-stage kidney disease discovered by admixture mapping in admixed African Americans. To address confounding due to admixture, we estimated local ancestry at each marker and global ancestry. We performed regression analysis stratified by local ancestry and combined the resulting regression estimates across ancestry strata using an inverse variance-weighted fixed effects model. We found that 11 of the 24 loci were significantly associated with eGFR in our sample. The effect size estimates were not significantly different between the subgroups of individuals with two copies of African ancestry vs. two copies of European ancestry for any of the 11 loci. In contrast, allele frequencies were significantly different at 10 of the 11 loci. Collectively, the 11 loci, including four secondary signals revealed by conditional analyses, explained 14.2% of the phenotypic variance in eGFR, in contrast to the 1.4% explained by the 24 loci in individuals of European ancestry. Our findings provide insight into the genetic basis of variation in renal function among admixed African Americans. PMID:23028791

  10. Regulation of Natural Killer Cell Function by STAT3

    PubMed Central

    Cacalano, Nicholas A.

    2016-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells, key members of a distinct hematopoietic lineage, innate lymphoid cells, are not only critical effectors that mediate cytotoxicity toward tumor and virally infected cells but also regulate inflammation, antigen presentation, and the adaptive immune response. It has been shown that NK cells can regulate the development and activation of many other components of the immune response, such as dendritic cells, which in turn, modulate the function of NK cells in multiple synergistic feed back loops driven by cell–cell contact, and the secretion of cytokines and chemokines that control effector function and migration of cells to sites of immune activation. The signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT)-3 is involved in driving almost all of the pathways that control NK cytolytic activity as well as the reciprocal regulatory interactions between NK cells and other components of the immune system. In the context of tumor immunology, NK cells are a first line of defense that eliminates pre-cancerous and transformed cells early in the process of carcinogenesis, through a mechanism of “immune surveillance.” Even after tumors become established, NK cells are critical components of anticancer immunity: dysfunctional NK cells are often found in the peripheral blood of cancer patients, and the lack of NK cells in the tumor microenvironment often correlates to poor prognosis. The pathways and soluble factors activated in tumor-associated NK cells, cancer cells, and regulatory myeloid cells, which determine the outcome of cancer immunity, are all critically regulated by STAT3. Using the tumor microenvironment as a paradigm, we present here an overview of the research that has revealed fundamental mechanisms through which STAT3 regulates all aspects of NK cell biology, including NK development, activation, target cell killing, and fine tuning of the innate and adaptive immune responses. PMID:27148255