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Sample records for improves contractile function

  1. Depressed contractile function due to canine mitral regurgitation improves after correction of the volume overload.

    PubMed Central

    Nakano, K; Swindle, M M; Spinale, F; Ishihara, K; Kanazawa, S; Smith, A; Biederman, R W; Clamp, L; Hamada, Y; Zile, M R

    1991-01-01

    It is known that long-standing volume overload on the left ventricle due to mitral regurgitation eventually leads to contractile dysfunction. However, it is unknown whether or not correction of the volume overload can lead to recovery of contractility. In this study we tested the hypothesis that depressed contractile function due to volume overload in mitral regurgitation could return toward normal after mitral valve replacement. Using a canine model of mitral regurgitation which is known to produce contractile dysfunction, we examined contractile function longitudinally in seven dogs at baseline, after 3 mo of mitral regurgitation, 1 mo after mitral valve replacement, and 3 mo after mitral valve replacement. After 3 mo of mitral regurgitation (regurgitant fraction 0.62 +/- 0.04), end-diastolic volume had nearly doubled from 68 +/- 6.8 to 123 +/- 12.1 ml (P less than 0.05). All five indices of contractile function which we examined were depressed. For instance, maximum fiber elastance (EmaxF) obtained by assessment of time-varying elastance decreased from 5.95 +/- 0.71 to 2.25 +/- 0.18 (P less than 0.05). The end-systolic stiffness constant (k) was also depressed from 4.2 +/- 0.4 to 2.1 +/- 0.3. 3 mo after mitral valve replacement all indexes of contractile function had returned to or toward normal (e.g., EmaxF 3.65 +/- 0.21 and k 4.2 +/- 0.3). We conclude that previously depressed contractile function due to volume overload can improve after correction of the overload. PMID:1828252

  2. Disruption of ROCK1 gene attenuates cardiac dilation and improves contractile function in pathological cardiac hypertrophy.

    PubMed

    Shi, Jianjian; Zhang, Yi-Wei; Summers, Lelia J; Dorn, Gerald W; Wei, Lei

    2008-03-01

    The development of left ventricular cardiomyocyte hypertrophy in response to increased hemodynamic load and neurohormonal stress is initially a compensatory response. However, persistent stress eventually leads to dilated heart failure, which is a common cause of heart failure in human hypertensive and valvular heart disease. We have recently reported that Rho-associated coiled-coil containing protein kinase 1 (ROCK1) homozygous knockout mice exhibited reduced cardiac fibrosis and cardiomyocyte apoptosis, while displaying a preserved compensatory hypertrophic response to pressure overload. In this study, we have tested the effects of ROCK1 deficiency on cardiac hypertrophy, dilation, and dysfunction. We have shown that ROCK1 deletion attenuated left ventricular dilation and contractile dysfunction, but not hypertrophy, in a transgenic model of Galphaq overexpression-induced hypertrophy which represents a well-characterized and highly relevant genetic mouse model of pathological hypertrophy. Although the development of cardiomyocyte hypertrophy was not affected, ROCK1 deletion in Galphaq mice resulted in a concentric hypertrophic phenotype associated with reduced induction of hypertrophic markers indicating that ROCK1 deletion could favorably modify hypertrophy without inhibiting it. Furthermore, ROCK1 deletion also improved contractile response to beta-adrenergic stimulation in Galphaq transgenic mice. Consistent with this observation, ROCK1 deletion prevented down-regulation of type V/VI adenylyl cyclase expression, which is associated with the impaired beta-adrenergic signaling in Galphaq mice. The present study establishes for the first time a role for ROCK1 in cardiac dilation and contractile dysfunction.

  3. Transplantation of adipose tissue-derived stem cells improves cardiac contractile function and electrical stability in a rat myocardial infarction model.

    PubMed

    Gautam, Milan; Fujita, Daiki; Kimura, Kazuhiro; Ichikawa, Hinako; Izawa, Atsushi; Hirose, Masamichi; Kashihara, Toshihide; Yamada, Mitsuhiko; Takahashi, Masafumi; Ikeda, Uichi; Shiba, Yuji

    2015-04-01

    The transplantation of adipose tissue-derived stem cells (ADSCs) improves cardiac contractility after myocardial infarction (MI); however, little is known about the electrophysiological consequences of transplantation. The purpose of this study was to clarify whether the transplantation of ADSCs increases or decreases the incidence of ventricular tachyarrhythmias (VT) in a rat model of MI. MI was induced experimentally by permanent occlusion of the left anterior descending artery of Lewis rats. ADSCs were harvested from GFP-transgenic rats, and were cultured until passage four. ADSCs (10×10(6)) resuspended in 100μL saline or pro-survival cocktail (PSC), which enhances cardiac graft survival, were injected directly into syngeneic rat hearts 1week after MI. The recipients of ADSCs suspended in PSC had a larger graft area compared with those receiving ASDCs suspended in saline at 1week post-transplantation (number of graft cells/section: 148.7±10.6 vs. 22.4±3.4, p<0.05, n=5/group). Thereafter, all ADSC recipients were transplanted with ASDCs in PSC. ADSCs were transplanted into infarcted hearts, and the mechanical and electrophysiological functions were assessed. Echocardiography revealed that ADSC recipients had improved contractile function compared with those receiving PSC vehicle (fractional shortening: 21.1±0.9 vs. 14.1±1.2, p<0.05, n≥12/group). Four weeks post-transplantation, VT was induced via in vivo programmed electrical stimulation. The recipients of ADSCs showed a significantly lower incidence of induced VT compared with the control (31.3% vs. 83.3%, p<0.05, n≥12/group). To understand the electrical activity following transplantation, we performed ex vivo optical mapping using a voltage sensitive dye, and found that ADSC transplantation decreased conduction velocity and its dispersion in the peri-infarct area. These results suggest that ADSC transplantation improved cardiac mechanical and electrophysiological functions in subacute MI.

  4. Prednisolone attenuates improvement of cardiac and skeletal contractile function and histopathology by lisinopril and spironolactone in the mdx mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Janssen, Paul M L; Murray, Jason D; Schill, Kevin E; Rastogi, Neha; Schultz, Eric J; Tran, Tam; Raman, Subha V; Rafael-Fortney, Jill A

    2014-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an inherited disease that causes striated muscle weakness. Recently, we showed therapeutic effects of the combination of lisinopril (L), an angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor, and spironolactone (S), an aldosterone antagonist, in mice lacking dystrophin and haploinsufficient for utrophin (utrn(+/-);mdx, het mice); both cardiac and skeletal muscle function and histology were improved when these mice were treated early with LS. It was unknown to what extent LS treatment is effective in the most commonly used DMD murine model, the mdx mouse. In addition, current standard-of-care treatment for DMD is limited to corticosteroids. Therefore, potentially useful alternative or additive drugs need to be both compared directly to corticosteroids and tested in presence of corticosteroids. We evaluated the effectiveness of this LS combination in the mdx mouse model both compared with corticosteroid treatment (prednisolone, P) or in combination (LSP). We tested the additional combinatorial treatment containing the angiotensin II receptor blocker losartan (T), which is widely used to halt and treat the developing cardiac dysfunction in DMD patients as an alternative to an ACE inhibitor. Peak myocardial strain rate, assessed by magnetic resonance imaging, showed a negative impact of P, whereas in both diaphragm and extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscle contractile function was not significantly impaired by P. Histologically, P generally increased cardiac damage, estimated by percentage area infiltrated by IgG as well as by collagen staining. In general, groups that only differed in the presence or absence of P (i.e. mdx vs. P, LS vs. LSP, and TS vs. TSP) demonstrated a significant detrimental impact of P on many assessed parameters, with the most profound impact on cardiac pathology.

  5. Structure and function of contractile proteins in muscle fibres.

    PubMed

    Barden, J A; Bennetts, B H; dos Remedios, C G; Hambly, B D; Miki, M; Phillips, L

    1988-01-01

    The structural unit of muscle has long been defined as the myofibril, a supramolecular assembly of a dozen or more proteins of which two, actin and myosin, comprise more than 75%. In the past 40 years since Albert Szent-Gyorgyi first described the contractile response from the complex of actin and myosin, knowledge of the structure and function of these contractile proteins has been substantially refined. This paper describes these new discoveries and identifies the problems which remain to be elucidated.

  6. Effects of regular exercise training on skeletal muscle contractile function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fitts, Robert H.

    2003-01-01

    Skeletal muscle function is critical to movement and one's ability to perform daily tasks, such as eating and walking. One objective of this article is to review the contractile properties of fast and slow skeletal muscle and single fibers, with particular emphasis on the cellular events that control or rate limit the important mechanical properties. Another important goal of this article is to present the current understanding of how the contractile properties of limb skeletal muscle adapt to programs of regular exercise.

  7. Operative contractility: a functional concept of the inotropic state.

    PubMed

    Curiel, Roberto; Perez-Gonzalez, Juan; Torres, Edwar; Landaeta, Ruben; Cerrolaza, Miguel

    2005-10-01

    1. Initial unsuccessful attempts to evaluate ventricular function in terms of the 'heart as a pump' led to focusing on the 'heart as a muscle' and to the concept of myocardial contractility. However, no clinically ideal index exists to assess the contractile state. The aim of the present study was to develop a mathematical model to assess cardiac contractility. 2. A tri-axial system was conceived for preload (PL), afterload (AL) and contractility, where stroke volume (SV) was represented as the volume of the tetrahedron. Based on this model, 'operative' contractility ('OperCon') was calculated from the readily measured values of PL, AL and SV. The model was tested retrospectively under a variety of different experimental and clinical conditions, in 71 studies in humans and 29 studies in dogs. A prospective echocardiographic study was performed in 143 consecutive subjects to evaluate the ability of the model to assess contractility when SV and PL were measured volumetrically (mL) or dimensionally (cm). 3. With inotropic interventions, OperCon changes were comparable to those of ejection fraction (EF), velocity of shortening (Vcf) and dP/dt-max. Only with positive inotropic interventions did elastance (Ees) show significantly larger changes. With load manipulations, OperCon showed significantly smaller changes than EF and Ees and comparable changes to Vcf and dP/dt-max. Values of OperCon were similar when AL was represented by systolic blood pressure or wall stress and when volumetric or dimensional values were used. 4. Operative contractility is a reliable, simple and versatile method to assess cardiac contractility.

  8. Effect of hypokinesia on contractile function of cardiac muscle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meyerson, F. Z.; Kapelko, V. I.; Trikhpoyeva, A. M.; Gorina, M. S.

    1980-01-01

    Rats were subjected to hypokinesia for two months and the contractile function of isolated papillary muscle was studied. Hypokinesia reduced significantly the isotonic contraction rate which depended on the ATPase activity of the myofibrils; it also reduced the rate and index of relaxation which depended on the functional capacity of the Ca(++) pump of the sarcoplasmic reticulum. The maximum force of isometric contraction determined by the quantity of actomyosin bridges in the myofibrils did not change after hypokinesia. This complex of changes is contrary to that observed in adaptation to exercise when the rate of isotonic contraction and relaxation increases while the force of isometric contraction does not change. The possible mechanism of this stability of the contractile force during adaptation and readaptation of the heart is discussed.

  9. The Functional Lumen Imaging Probe Detects Esophageal Contractility not Observed with Manometry in Patients with Achalasia

    PubMed Central

    Carlson, Dustin A.; Lin, Zhiyue; Kahrilas, Peter J.; Sternbach, Joel; Donnan, Erica N.; Friesen, Laurel; Listernick, Zoe; Mogni, Benjamin; Pandolfino, John E.

    2015-01-01

    Background & Aims The functional lumen imaging probe (FLIP) could improve characterization of achalasia subtypes by detecting non-occlusive esophageal contractions not observed with standard manometry. We aimed to evaluate for esophageal contractions during volumetric distention in patients with achalasia using FLIP topography. Methods Fifty one treatment-naïve patients with achalasia, defined and sub-classified by high-resolution esophageal pressure topography, and 10 asymptomatic individuals (controls) were evaluated with the FLIP during endoscopy. During stepwise distension, simultaneous intra-bag pressures and 16 channels of cross-sectional areas were measured; data were exported to software that generated FLIP topography plots. Esophageal contractility was identified by noting periods of reduced luminal diameter. Esophageal contractions were further characterized by propagation direction, repetitiveness, and based on whether they were occluding or non-occluding. Results Esophageal contractility was detected in all 10 controls: 8/10 had repetitive, antegrade, contractions and 9/10 had occluding contractions. Contractility was detected in 27% (4/15) of patients with type I achalasia and 65% (18/26, including 9 with occluding contractions) of patients with type II achalasia. Contractility was detected in all 10 patients with type III achalasia; 8 of these patients had a pattern of contractility not observed in controls (repetitive, retrograde contractions). Conclusions Esophageal contractility not observed with manometry can be detected in patients with achalasia using FLIP topography. The presence and patterns of contractility detected with FLIP topography may represent variations in pathophysiology, such as mechanisms of pan-esophageal pressurization in patients with type II achalasia. These findings could have implications for additional sub-classification to supplement prediction of the achalasia disease course. PMID:26278501

  10. Recovery in skeletal muscle contractile function after prolonged hindlimb immobilization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fitts, R. H.; Brimmer, C. J.

    1985-01-01

    The effect of three-month hindlimb immobilization (IM) in rats on contractile properties of slow-twitch soleus (SOL), fast-twitch extensor digitorum longus, and fast-twitch superficial region of the vastus lateralis were measured after 0, 14, 28, 60, and 90 days of recovery on excized, horizontally suspended muscles stimulated electrically to maximal twitch tension. IM caused decreases in muscle-to-body weight ratios for all muscles, with no complete recovery even after 90 days. The contractile properties of the fast-twitch muscles were less affected by IM than those of the slow-twitch SOL. The SOL isometric twitch duration was shortened, due to reduced contraction and half-relaxation time, both of which returned to control levels after 14 days of recovery. The peak tetanic tension, P(O), g/sq cm,, decreased with IM by 46 percent in the SOL, but recovered by the 28th day. The maximum shortening velocity was not altered by IM in any of the muscles. Thus, normal contractile function could recover after prolonged limb IM.

  11. Mitochondria-targeted antioxidant preserves contractile properties and mitochondrial function of skeletal muscle in aged rats

    PubMed Central

    Javadov, Sabzali; Jang, Sehwan; Rodriguez-Reyes, Natividad; Rodriguez-Zayas, Ana E.; Hernandez, Jessica Soto; Krainz, Tanja; Wipf, Peter; Frontera, Walter

    2015-01-01

    Mitochondrial dysfunction plays a central role in the pathogenesis of sarcopenia associated with a loss of mass and activity of skeletal muscle. In addition to energy deprivation, increased mitochondrial ROS damage proteins and lipids in aged skeletal muscle. Therefore, prevention of mitochondrial ROS is important for potential therapeutic strategies to delay sarcopenia. This study elucidates the pharmacological efficiency of the new developed mitochondria-targeted ROS and electron scavenger, XJB-5-131 (XJB) to restore muscle contractility and mitochondrial function in aged skeletal muscle. Male adult (5-month old) and aged (29-month old) Fischer Brown Norway (F344/BN) rats were treated with XJB for four weeks and contractile properties of single skeletal muscle fibres and activity of mitochondrial ETC complexes were determined at the end of the treatment period. XJB-treated old rats showed higher muscle contractility associated with prevention of protein oxidation in both muscle homogenate and mitochondria compared with untreated counterparts. XJB-treated animals demonstrated a high activity of the respiratory complexes I, III, and IV with no changes in citrate synthase activity. These data demonstrate that mitochondrial ROS play a causal role in muscle weakness, and that a ROS scavenger specifically targeted to mitochondria can reverse age-related alterations of mitochondrial function and improve contractile properties in skeletal muscle. PMID:26415224

  12. Mitochondria-targeted antioxidant preserves contractile properties and mitochondrial function of skeletal muscle in aged rats.

    PubMed

    Javadov, Sabzali; Jang, Sehwan; Rodriguez-Reyes, Natividad; Rodriguez-Zayas, Ana E; Soto Hernandez, Jessica; Krainz, Tanja; Wipf, Peter; Frontera, Walter

    2015-11-24

    Mitochondrial dysfunction plays a central role in the pathogenesis of sarcopenia associated with a loss of mass and activity of skeletal muscle. In addition to energy deprivation, increased mitochondrial ROS damage proteins and lipids in aged skeletal muscle. Therefore, prevention of mitochondrial ROS is important for potential therapeutic strategies to delay sarcopenia. This study elucidates the pharmacological efficiency of the new developed mitochondria-targeted ROS and electron scavenger, XJB-5-131 (XJB) to restore muscle contractility and mitochondrial function in aged skeletal muscle. Male adult (5-month old) and aged (29-month old) Fischer Brown Norway (F344/BN) rats were treated with XJB for four weeks and contractile properties of single skeletal muscle fibres and activity of mitochondrial ETC complexes were determined at the end of the treatment period. XJB-treated old rats showed higher muscle contractility associated with prevention of protein oxidation in both muscle homogenate and mitochondria compared with untreated counterparts. XJB-treated animals demonstrated a high activity of the respiratory complexes I, III, and IV with no changes in citrate synthase activity. These data demonstrate that mitochondrial ROS play a causal role in muscle weakness, and that a ROS scavenger specifically targeted to mitochondria can reverse age-related alterations of mitochondrial function and improve contractile properties in skeletal muscle.

  13. Sphingolipid Metabolism, Oxidant Signaling, and Contractile Function of Skeletal Muscle

    PubMed Central

    Nikolova-Karakashian, Mariana N.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Significance Sphingolipids are a class of bioactive lipids that regulate diverse cell functions. Ceramide, sphingosine, and sphingosine-1-phosphate accumulate in tissues such as liver, brain, and lung under conditions of cellular stress, including oxidative stress. The activity of some sphingolipid metabolizing enzymes, chiefly the sphingomyelinases, is stimulated during inflammation and in response to oxidative stress. Ceramide, the sphingomyelinase product, as well as the ceramide metabolite, sphingosine-1-phosphate, can induce the generation of more reactive oxygen species, propagating further inflammation. Recent Advances This review article summarizes information on sphingolipid biochemistry and signaling pertinent to skeletal muscle and describes the potential influence of sphingolipids on contractile function. Critical Issues It encompasses topics related to (1) the pathways for complex sphingolipid biosynthesis and degradation, emphasizing sphingolipid regulation in various muscle fiber types and subcellular compartments; (2) the emerging evidence that implicates ceramide, sphingosine, and sphingosine-1-phosphate as regulators of muscle oxidant activity, and (3) sphingolipid effects on contractile function and fatigue. Future Directions We propose that prolonged inflammatory conditions alter ceramide, sphingosine, and sphingosine-1-phosphate levels in skeletal muscle and that these changes promote the weakness, premature fatigue, and cachexia that plague individuals with heart failure, cancer, diabetes, and other chronic inflammatory diseases. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 15, 2501–2517. PMID:21453197

  14. A relationship between ultrasonic integrated backscatter and myocardial contractile function.

    PubMed Central

    Wickline, S A; Thomas, L J; Miller, J G; Sobel, B E; Perez, J E

    1985-01-01

    We have shown previously that the physiologic, mechanical cardiac cycle is associated with a parallel, cardiac cycle-dependent variation of integrated backscatter (IB). However, the mechanisms responsible are not known. The mathematical and physiological considerations explored in the present study suggest that the relationship between backscatter and myocardial contractile function reflects cyclic alterations in myofibrillar elastic parameters, with the juxtaposition of intracellular and extracellular elastic elements that have different intrinsic acoustic impedances providing an appropriately sized scattering interface at the cellular level. Cardiac cycle-dependent changes in the degree of local acoustic impedance mismatch therefore may elicit concomitant changes in backscatter. Because acoustic impedance is determined partly by elastic modulus, changes in local elastic moduli resulting from the non-Hookian behavior of myocardial elastic elements exposed to stretch may alter the extent of impedance mismatch. When cardiac cell mechanical behavior is represented by a three-component Maxwell-type model of muscle mechanics, the systolic decrease in IB that we have observed experimentally is predicted. Our prior observations of regional intramural differences in IB and the dependence of IB on global contractile function are accounted for as well. When the model is tested experimentally by assessing its ability to predict the regional and global behavior of backscatter in response to passive left ventricular distention, good concordance is observed. Images PMID:3908482

  15. Airway smooth muscle cell tone amplifies contractile function in the presence of chronic cyclic strain.

    PubMed

    Fairbank, Nigel J; Connolly, Sarah C; Mackinnon, James D; Wehry, Kathrin; Deng, Linhong; Maksym, Geoffrey N

    2008-09-01

    Chronic contractile activation, or tone, in asthma coupled with continuous stretching due to breathing may be involved in altering the contractile function of airway smooth muscle (ASM). Previously, we (11) showed that cytoskeletal remodeling and stiffening responses to acute (2 h) localized stresses were modulated by the level of contractile activation of ASM. Here, we investigated if altered contractility in response to chronic mechanical strain was dependent on repeated modulation of contractile tone. Cultured human ASM cells received 5% cyclic (0.3 Hz), predominantly uniaxial strain for 5 days, with once-daily dosing of either sham, forskolin, carbachol, or histamine to alter tone. Stiffness, contractility (KCl), and "relaxability" (forskolin) were then measured as was cell alignment, myosin light-chain phosphorylation (pMLC), and myosin light-chain kinase (MLCK) content. Cells became aligned and baseline stiffness increased with strain, but repeated lowering of tone inhibited both effects (P < 0.05). Strain also reversed a negative tone-modulation dependence of MLCK, observed in static conditions in agreement with previous reports, with strain and tone together increasing both MLCK and pMLC. Furthermore, contractility increased 176% (SE 59) with repeated tone elevation. These findings indicate that with strain, and not without, repeated tone elevation promoted contractile function through changes in cytoskeletal organization and increased contractile protein. The ability of repeated contractile activation to increase contractility, but only with mechanical stretching, suggests a novel mechanism for increased ASM contractility in asthma and for the role of continuous bronchodilator and corticosteroid therapy in reversing airway hyperresponsiveness.

  16. Catecholamines and myocardial contractile function during hypodynamia and with an altered thyroid hormone balance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pruss, G. M.; Kuznetsov, V. I.; Zhilinskaya, A. A.

    1980-01-01

    The dynamics of catecholamine content and myocardial contractile function during hypodynamia were studied in 109 white rats whose motor activity was severely restricted for up to 30 days. During the first five days myocardial catecholamine content, contractile function, and physical load tolerance decreased. Small doses of thyroidin counteracted this tendency. After 15 days, noradrenalin content and other indices approached normal levels and, after 30 days, were the same as control levels, although cardiac functional reserve was decreased. Thyroidin administration after 15 days had no noticeable effect. A detailed table shows changes in 17 indices of myocardial contractile function during hypodynamia.

  17. Effect of a Periodized Power Training Program on the Functional Performances and Contractile Properties of the Quadriceps in Sprinters

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kamandulis, Sigitas; Skurvydas, Albertas; Brazaitis, Marius; Stanislovaitis, Aleksas; Duchateau, Jacques; Stanislovaitiene, Jurate

    2012-01-01

    Our purpose was to compare the effect of a periodized preparation consisting of power endurance training and high-intensity power training on the contractile properties of the quadriceps muscle and functional performances in well trained male sprinters (n = 7). After 4 weeks of high-intensity power training, 60-m sprint running time improved by an…

  18. Muscle fatigue in frog semitendinosus: alterations in contractile function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thompson, L. V.; Balog, E. M.; Riley, D. A.; Fitts, R. H.

    1992-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to characterize the contractile properties of the frog semitendinosus (ST) muscle before and during recovery from fatigue, to relate the observed functional changes to alterations in specific steps in the crossbridge model of muscle contraction, and to determine how fatigue affects the force-frequency relationship. The frog ST (22 degrees C) was fatigued by direct electrical stimulation with 100-ms 150-Hz trains at 1/s for 5 min. The fatigue protocol reduced peak twitch (Pt) and tetanic (Po) force to 32 and 8.5% of initial force, respectively. The decline in Pt was less than Po, in part due to a prolongation in the isometric contraction time (CT), which increased to 300% of the initial value. The isometric twitch duration was greatly prolonged as reflected by the lengthened CT and the 800% increase in the one-half relaxation time (1/2RT). Both Pt and Po showed a biphasic recovery, a rapid initial phase (2 min) followed by a slower (40 min) return to the prefatigue force. CT and 1/2RT also recovered in two phases, returning to 160 and 265% of control in the first 5 min. CT returned to the prefatigue value between 35 and 40 min, whereas even at 60 min 1/2RT was 133% of control. The maximal velocity of shortening, determined by the slack test, was significantly reduced [from 6.7 +/- 0.5 to 2.5 +/- 0.4 optimal muscle length/s] at fatigue. The force-frequency relationship was shifted to the left, so that optimal frequency for generating Po was reduced.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

  19. The role of microtubules in contractile ring function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Conrad, A. H.; Paulsen, A. Q.; Conrad, G. W.; Spooner, B. S. (Principal Investigator)

    1992-01-01

    During cytokinesis, a cortical contractile ring forms around a cell, constricts to a stable tight neck and terminates in separation of the daughter cells. At first cleavage, Ilyanassa obsoleta embryos form two contractile rings simultaneously. The cleavage furrow (CF), in the animal hemisphere between the spindle poles, constricts to a stable tight neck and separates the daughter cells. The third polar lobe constriction (PLC-3), in the vegetal hemisphere below the spindle, constricts to a transient tight neck, but then relaxes, allowing the polar lobe cytoplasm to merge with one daughter cell. Eggs exposed to taxol, a drug that stabilizes microtubules, before the CF or the PLC-3 develop, fail to form CFs, but form stabilized tight PLCs. Eggs exposed to taxol at the time of PLC-3 formation develop varied numbers of constriction rings in their animal hemispheres and one PLC in their vegetal hemisphere, none of which relax. Eggs exposed to taxol after PLC-3 initiation form stabilized tight CFs and PLCs. At maximum constriction, control embryos display immunolocalization of nonextractable alpha-tubulin in their CFs, but not in their PLCs, and reveal, via electron microscopy, many microtubules extending through their CFs, but not through their PLCs. Embryos which form stabilized tightly constricted CFs and PLCs in the presence of taxol display immunolocalization of nonextractable alpha-tubulin in both constrictions and show many polymerized microtubules extending through both CFs and PLCs. These results suggest that the extension of microtubules through a tight contractile ring may be important for stabilizing that constriction and facilitating subsequent cytokinesis.

  20. Na+-K+ pump stimulation improves contractility in damaged muscle fibers.

    PubMed

    Clausen, Torben

    2005-12-01

    Skeletal muscles have a high content of Na+-K+-ATPase, an enzyme that is identical to the Na+-K+ pump, a transport system mediating active extrusion of Na+ from the cells and accumulation of K+ in the cells. The major function of the Na+-K+ pumps is to maintain the concentration gradients for Na+ and K+ across the plasma membrane. This generates the resting membrane potential, allowing the propagation of action potentials, excitation-contraction coupling and force development. Muscles exposed to (1) high extracellular K+ or (2) low extracellular Na+ show a considerable loss of force. A similar force decline is elicited by (3) increasing Na+ permeability or (4) decreasing K+ permeability. Under all of these four conditions, stimulation of the Na+-K+ pumps can restore contractility. Following exposure to electroporation or fatiguing stimulation, muscle cell membranes develop leaks to Na+ and K+ and a partially reversible loss of force. The restoration of force is abolished by blocking the Na+-K+ pumps and markedly improved by stimulating the Na+-K+ pumps with beta 2-agonists, calcitonin gene-related peptide, or dbcAMP. These observations indicate that the Na+-K+ pumps are important for the functional compensation of the commonly occurring loss of muscle cell integrity. Stimulation of the Na+-K+ pumps with beta 2-agonists or other agents may be of therapeutic value in the treatment of muscle cell damage induced by electrical shocks, prolonged exercise, burns, or bruises.

  1. Circadian rhythms in myocardial metabolism and contractile function; influence of workload and oleate

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Multiple extra-cardiac stimuli, such as workload and circulating nutrients (e.g., fatty acids), known to influence myocardial metabolism and contractile function exhibit marked circadian rhythms. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether the rat heart exhibits circadian rhythms in its ...

  2. Lidocaine Enhances Contractile Function of Ischemic Myocardial Regions in Mouse Model of Sustained Myocardial Ischemia

    PubMed Central

    Kania, Gabriela; Osto, Elena; Jakob, Philipp; Krasniqi, Nazmi; Beck-Schimmer, Beatrice; Blyszczuk, Przemyslaw; Eriksson, Urs

    2016-01-01

    Rationale Perioperative myocardial ischemia is common in high-risk patients. The use of interventional revascularisation or even thrombolysis is limited in this patient subset due to exceedingly high bleeding risks. Blockade of voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSC) with lidocaine had been suggested to reduce infarct size and cardiomyocyte cell death in ischemia/reperfusion models. However, the impact of lidocaine on cardiac function during sustained ischemia still remains unclear. Methods Sustained myocardial ischemia was induced by ligation of the left anterior descending artery in 12–16 weeks old male BALB/c mice. Subcutaneous lidocaine (30 mg/kg) was used to block VGSC. Cardiac function was quantified at baseline and at 72h by conventional and speckle-tracking based echocardiography to allow high-sensitivity in vivo phenotyping. Infarct size and cardiomyocyte cell death were assessed post mortem histologically and indirectly using troponin measurements. Results Ischemia strongly impaired both, global systolic and diastolic function, which were partially rescued in lidocaine treated in mice. No differences regarding infarct size and cardiomyocyte cell death were observed. Mechanistically, and as shown with speckle-tracking analysis, lidocaine specifically improves residual contractility in the ischemic but not in the remote, non-ischemic myocardium. Conclusion VGSC blockade with lidocaine rescues function of ischemic myocardium as a potential bridging to revascularisation in the setting of perioperative myocardial ischemia. PMID:27140425

  3. Vascular smooth muscle cell functional contractility depends on extracellular mechanical properties

    PubMed Central

    Steucke, Kerianne E.; Tracy, Paige V.; Hald, Eric S.; Hall, Jennifer L.; Alford, Patrick W.

    2015-01-01

    Vascular smooth muscle cells’ primary function is to maintain vascular homeostasis through active contraction and relaxation. In diseases such as hypertension and atherosclerosis, this function is inhibited concurrent to changes in the mechanical environment surrounding vascular smooth muscle cells. It is well established that cell function and extracellular mechanics are interconnected; variations in substrate modulus affect cell migration, proliferation, and differentiation. To date, it is unknown how the evolving extracellular mechanical environment of vascular smooth muscle cells affects their contractile function. Here, we have built upon previous vascular muscular thin film technology to develop a variable-modulus vascular muscular thin film that measures vascular tissue functional contractility on substrates with a range of pathological and physiological moduli. Using this modified vascular muscular thin film, we found that vascular smooth muscle cells generated greater stress on substrates with higher moduli compared to substrates with lower moduli. We then measured protein markers typically thought to indicate a contractile phenotype in vascular smooth muscle cells and found that phenotype is unaffected by substrate modulus. These data suggest that mechanical properties of vascular smooth muscle cells’ extracellular environment directly influence their functional behavior and do so without inducing phenotype switching. PMID:26283412

  4. Utilization of Microscale Silicon Cantilevers to Assess Cellular Contractile Function In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Alec S.T.; Long, Christopher J.; McAleer, Christopher; Bobbitt, Nathaniel; Srinivasan, Balaji; Hickman, James J.

    2014-01-01

    The development of more predictive and biologically relevant in vitro assays is predicated on the advancement of versatile cell culture systems which facilitate the functional assessment of the seeded cells. To that end, microscale cantilever technology offers a platform with which to measure the contractile functionality of a range of cell types, including skeletal, cardiac, and smooth muscle cells, through assessment of contraction induced substrate bending. Application of multiplexed cantilever arrays provides the means to develop moderate to high-throughput protocols for assessing drug efficacy and toxicity, disease phenotype and progression, as well as neuromuscular and other cell-cell interactions. This manuscript provides the details for fabricating reliable cantilever arrays for this purpose, and the methods required to successfully culture cells on these surfaces. Further description is provided on the steps necessary to perform functional analysis of contractile cell types maintained on such arrays using a novel laser and photo-detector system. The representative data provided highlights the precision and reproducible nature of the analysis of contractile function possible using this system, as well as the wide range of studies to which such technology can be applied. Successful widespread adoption of this system could provide investigators with the means to perform rapid, low cost functional studies in vitro, leading to more accurate predictions of tissue performance, disease development and response to novel therapeutic treatment. PMID:25350792

  5. An Acanthamoeba castellanii metacaspase associates with the contractile vacuole and functions in osmoregulation.

    PubMed

    Saheb, Entsar; Trzyna, Wendy; Bush, John

    2013-03-01

    Acanthamoeba castellanii is a free-living protozoan. Some strains are opportunistic pathogens. A type-I metacaspase was identified in A. castellanii (Acmcp) and was shown to be expressed through the encystation process. The model organism, Dictyostelium discoideum, has been used here as a model for studying these caspase-like proteins. Separate cell lines expressing a GFP-tagged version of the full length Acmcp protein, as well as a deletion proline region mutant of Acmcp protein (GFP-Acmcp-dpr), have been introduced into D. discoideum. Both mutants affect the cellular metabolism, characterized by an increase in the growth rate. Microscopic imaging revealed an association between Acmcp and the contractile vacuole system in D. discoideum. The treatment of cells with selected inhibitors in different environments added additional support to these findings. This evidence shows that Acmcp plays an important role in contractile vacuole regulation and mediated membrane trafficking in D. discoideum. Additionally, the severe defect in contractile vacuole function in GFP-Acmcp-dpr mutant cells suggests that the proline-rich region in Acmcp has an essential role in binding this protein with other partners to maintain this process. Furthermore, Yeast two-hybrid system identified there are weak interactions of the Dictyostelium contractile vacuolar proteins, including Calmodulin, RabD, Rab11 and vacuolar proton ATPase, with Acmcp protein. Taken together, our findings suggest that A. castellanii metacaspase associate with the contractile vacuole and have an essential role in cell osmoregulation, which contributes to its attractiveness as a possible target for treatment therapies against A. castellanii infection.

  6. Contractile function of single muscle fibers after hindlimb suspension

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gardetto, P. R.; Schluter, J. M.; Fitts, R. H.

    1989-01-01

    The effects of two weeks of hind-limb suspension (HS) on the functional properties of slow-twitch and fast-twitch single fibers isolated from the predominantly slow-twitch soleus and fast-twitch gastrocnemius of the suspended leg of rats were investigated. Single fibers were suspended between a motor arm and force transducer, and, after their functional properties were studied, the fiber type was established by the myosin heavy chain analysis. It was found that, after HS, the greatest decrease in diameter and a reduction in peak tension occurred in slow-twitch fibers from soleus, followed by slow-twitch fibers from gastrocnemius. Fast-twitch fibers from the red gastrocnemius showed a significant reduction in diameter but no change in peak tension. No effect of HS was observed on the diameter of the fast-twitch fibers from the white gastsrocnemius (which is known to contain 87 percent fast glycolytic fibers).

  7. Contractile function of the myocardium with prolonged hypokinesia in patients with surgical tuberculosis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zakutayeva, V. P.; Matiks, N. I.

    1978-01-01

    The changes in the myocardial contractile function with hypokinesia in surgical tuberculosis patients are discussed. The phase nature of the changes is noted, specifically the changes in the various systoles, diastole, and other parts of the cardiac cycle. The data compare these changes during confinement in bed with no motor activity to and with a return to motor activity after leaving the in-bed regimen.

  8. Increased acetyl group availability enhances contractile function of canine skeletal muscle during ischemia.

    PubMed Central

    Timmons, J A; Poucher, S M; Constantin-Teodosiu, D; Worrall, V; Macdonald, I A; Greenhaff, P L

    1996-01-01

    Skeletal muscle contractile function is impaired during acute ischemia such as that experienced by peripheral vascular disease patients. We therefore, examined the effects of dichloroacetate, which can alter resting metabolism, on canine gracilis muscle contractile function during constant flow ischemia. Pretreatment with dichloroacetate increased resting pyruvate dehydrogenase complex activity and resting acetylcarnitine concentration by approximately 4- and approximately 10-fold, respectively. After 20-min contraction the control group had demonstrated an approximately 40% reduction in isomeric tension whereas the dichloroacetate group had fatigued by approximately 25% (P < 0.05). Dichloroacetate resulted in less lactate accumulation (10.3 +/- 3.0 vs 58.9 +/- 10.5 mmol.kg-1 dry muscle [dm], P < 0.05) and phosphocreatine hydrolysis (15.6 +/- 6.3 vs 33.8 +/- 9.0 mmol.kg-1 dm, P < 0.05) during contraction. Acetylcarnitine concentration fell during contraction by 5.4 +/- 1.8 mmol.kg-1 dm in the dichloroacetate group but increased by 10.0 +/- 1.9 mmol.kg-1 dm in the control group. In conclusion, dichloroacetate enhanced contractile function during ischemia, independently of blood flow, such that it appears oxidative ATP regeneration is limited by pyruvate dehydrogenase complex activity and acetyl group availability. PMID:8609248

  9. From Newborn to Senescence Morphological and Functional Remodeling Leads to Increased Contractile Capacity of Arteries.

    PubMed

    Ivic, Ivan; Vamos, Zoltan; Cseplo, Peter; Koller, Akos

    2017-04-01

    Aging induces substantial morphological and functional changes in vessels. We hypothesized that due to morphological remodeling the total contractile forces of arteries increase, especially in older age as a function of age. Mean arterial blood pressure of rats and morphological and functional characteristics of isolated carotid arteries rats, from newborn to senescent, were assessed. The arterial blood pressure of rats increased significantly from 0.25 to the age of 6 months, and then it reached a level, which was maintained until age of 30 months. Wall lumen and wall thickness increased with age, mostly due to media (smooth muscle) thickening, whereas wall tension gradually reduced with age. Contractions of arteries to nonreceptor-mediated vasomotor agent (KCl, 60mM) increased in three consecutive age groups, whereas contractility first increased (until 2 months), then it did not change further with aging. Norepinephrine-induced contractions initially increased in young age and then did not change further in older age. These findings suggest that during normal aging due to remodeling of arterial wall (smooth muscle) the contractile capacity of arteries increases, which seems to be independent from systemic blood pressure. Thus, arterial remodeling can favor the development of increased circulatory resistance in older age.

  10. Contractile function is unaltered in diaphragm from mice lacking calcium release channel isoform 3

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clancy, J. S.; Takeshima, H.; Hamilton, S. L.; Reid, M. B.

    1999-01-01

    Skeletal muscle expresses at least two isoforms of the calcium release channel in the sarcoplasmic reticulum (RyR1 and RyR3). Whereas the function of RyR1 is well defined, the physiological significance of RyR3 is unclear. Some authors have suggested that RyR3 participates in excitation-contraction coupling and that RyR3 may specifically confer resistance to fatigue. To test this hypothesis, we measured contractile function of diaphragm strips from adult RyR3-deficient mice (exon 2-targeted mutation) and their heterozygous and wild-type littermates. In unfatigued diaphragm, there were no differences in isometric contractile properties (twitch characteristics, force-frequency relationships, maximal force) among the three groups. Our fatigue protocol (30 Hz, 0.25 duty cycle, 37 degrees C) depressed force to 25% of the initial force; however, lack of RyR3 did not accelerate the decline in force production. The force-frequency relationship was shifted to higher frequencies and was depressed in fatigued diaphragm; lack of RyR3 did not exaggerate these changes. We therefore provide evidence that RyR3 deficiency does not alter contractile function of adult muscle before, during, or after fatigue.

  11. Electrophysiological and contractile function of cardiomyocytes derived from human embryonic stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Blazeski, Adriana; Zhu, Renjun; Hunter, David W.; Weinberg, Seth H.; Boheler, Kenneth R.; Zambidis, Elias T.; Tung, Leslie

    2013-01-01

    Human embryonic stem cells have emerged as the prototypical source from which cardiomyocytes can be derived for use in drug discovery and cell therapy. However, such applications require that these cardiomyocytes (hESC-CMs) faithfully recapitulate the physiology of adult cells, especially in relation to their electrophysiological and contractile function. We review what is known about the electrophysiology of hESC-CMs in terms of beating rate, action potential characteristics, ionic currents, and cellular coupling as well as their contractility in terms of calcium cycling and contraction. We also discuss the heterogeneity in cellular phenotypes that arises from variability in cardiac differentiation, maturation, and culture conditions, and summarize present strategies that have been implemented to reduce this heterogeneity. Finally, we present original electrophysiological data from optical maps of hESC-CM clusters. PMID:22958937

  12. Novel approaches to determine contractile function of the isolated adult zebrafish ventricular cardiac myocyte

    PubMed Central

    Dvornikov, Alexey V; Dewan, Sukriti; Alekhina, Olga V; Pickett, F Bryan; de Tombe, Pieter P

    2014-01-01

    The zebrafish (Danio rerio) has been used extensively in cardiovascular biology, but mainly in the study of heart development. The relative ease of its genetic manipulation may indicate the suitability of this species as a cost-effective model system for the study of cardiac contractile biology. However, whether the zebrafish heart is an appropriate model system for investigations pertaining to mammalian cardiac contractile structure–function relationships remains to be resolved. Myocytes were isolated from adult zebrafish hearts by enzymatic digestion, attached to carbon rods, and twitch force and intracellular Ca2+ were measured. We observed the modulation of twitch force, but not of intracellular Ca2+, by both extracellular [Ca2+] and sarcomere length. In permeabilized cells/myofibrils, we found robust myofilament length-dependent activation. Moreover, modulation of myofilament activation–relaxation and force redevelopment kinetics by varied Ca2+ activation levels resembled that found previously in mammalian myofilaments. We conclude that the zebrafish is a valid model system for the study of cardiac contractile structure–function relationships. PMID:24591576

  13. Formation and function of the polar body contractile ring in Spisula.

    PubMed

    Pielak, Rafal M; Gaysinskaya, Valeriya A; Cohen, William D

    2004-05-15

    Initial studies suggested that spatial organization of the putative polar body contractile ring was determined by the peripheral aster in Spisula [Biol. Bull. 205 (2003) 192]. Here we report detailed supporting observations, including testing of aster and ring function with inhibitors. The metaphase peripheral aster was confirmed to spread cortically in an umbrella-like pattern, with microtubule-poor center. The aster disassembled during anaphase, leaving the spindle docked at the F-actin-poor center of a newly generated cortical F-actin ring that closely approximated the aster in location, measured diameter range, and pattern. Cytochalasin D and latrunculin-B permitted all events except ring and polar body formation. Nocodazole disassembly or taxol stabilization of the peripheral aster produced poorly defined rings or bulging anaphase asters within the ring center, respectively, inhibiting polar body formation. Polar body extrusion occurred at the ring center, the diameter of which diminished. Ring contractility-previously assumed-was verified using blebbistatin, a myosin-II ATPase inhibitor that permitted ring assembly but blocked polar body extrusion. The data support the hypothesis that peripheral aster spreading, perhaps dynein-driven, is causally related to polar body contractile ring formation, with anaphase entry and aster disassembly also required for polar body biogenesis. Previously reported astral spreading during embryonic micromere formation suggests that related mechanisms are involved in asymmetric somatic cytokinesis.

  14. The Modulation of Cardiac Contractile Function by the Pharmacological and Toxicological Effects of Urocortin2

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Si; Wang, Zhenhua; Xu, Bo; Mi, Xiangquan; Sun, Wanqing; Quan, Nanhu; Wang, Lin; Chen, Xingchi; Liu, Quan; Zheng, Yang; Leng, Jiyan; Li, Ji

    2015-01-01

    Urocortin2 (Ucn2) has been revealed to enhance cardiac function in heart failure. However, the pharmacological and toxicological effects of Ucn2 on cardiomyocytes are incompletely understood. In this study, we investigated the possible mechanisms of Ucn2 on mediating the contractility of cardiomyocytes. Mechanical properties and intracellular Ca2+ properties were measured in isolated cardiomyocytes from different treatment groups. The stress signaling was evaluated using Western blot. The results demonstrated that Ucn2 induced maximal velocity of shortening (+dL/dt), peak height, peak shortening (PS) amplitude, maximal velocity of relengthening (−dL/dt), accompanied by a significant rise in intracellular Ca2+ level and a fall of the mean time constant of Ca2+ transient decay (Tau) in WT cardiomyocytes. However, these effects were abolished by preincubation of type 2 CRF receptors (CRFR2) antagonist anti-sauvagine 30 (a-SVG-30). We also found that Ucn2 treatment activated the AMPK pathway in isolated cardiomyocytes via CRFR2. Furthermore, Ucn2 induced protein kinase A (PKA) and phospholamban (PLN) phosphorylation. Pretreatment of PKA inhibitor H89 reduced the inotropic and lusitropic effects of Ucn2 as well as decreased the intracellular Ca2+ load and slowed down the Ca2+ transient decay. We also showed that preincubation of Compound C, an inhibitor of AMPK, inhibited the phosphorylation of PKA and the intracellular Ca2+ level in cardiomyocytes without affecting the contractile function and the Tau of cardiomyocytes. Taken together, it suggests that Ucn2 facilitate the contractility of cardiomyocytes via activating both AMPK and PKA. PMID:26342213

  15. Muscle metaboreflex-induced coronary vasoconstriction functionally limits increases in ventricular contractility

    PubMed Central

    Coutsos, Matthew; Sala-Mercado, Javier A.; Ichinose, Masashi; Li, ZhenHua; Dawe, Elizabeth J.

    2010-01-01

    Muscle metaboreflex activation during dynamic exercise induces a substantial increase in cardiac work and oxygen demand via a significant increase in heart rate, ventricular contractility, and afterload. This increase in cardiac work should cause coronary metabolic vasodilation. However, little if any coronary vasodilation is observed due to concomitant sympathetically induced coronary vasoconstriction. The purpose of the present study is to determine whether the restraint of coronary vasodilation functionally limits increases in left ventricular contractility. Using chronically instrumented, conscious dogs (n = 9), we measured mean arterial pressure, cardiac output, and circumflex blood flow and calculated coronary vascular conductance, maximal derivative of ventricular pressure (dp/dtmax), and preload recruitable stroke work (PRSW) at rest and during mild exercise (2 mph) before and during activation of the muscle metaboreflex. Experiments were repeated after systemic α1-adrenergic blockade (∼50 μg/kg prazosin). During prazosin administration, we observed significantly greater increases in coronary vascular conductance (0.64 ± 0.06 vs. 0.46 ± 0.03 ml·min−1·mmHg−1; P < 0.05), circumflex blood flow (77.9 ± 6.6 vs. 63.0 ± 4.5 ml/min; P < 0.05), cardiac output (7.38 ± 0.52 vs. 6.02 ± 0.42 l/min; P < 0.05), dP/dtmax (5,449 ± 339 vs. 3,888 ± 243 mmHg/s; P < 0.05), and PRSW (160.1 ± 10.3 vs. 183.8 ± 9.2 erg·103/ml; P < 0.05) with metaboreflex activation vs. those seen in control experiments. We conclude that the sympathetic restraint of coronary vasodilation functionally limits further reflex increases in left ventricular contractility. PMID:20413426

  16. Control of mammary myoepithelial cell contractile function by α3β1 integrin signalling.

    PubMed

    Raymond, Karine; Cagnet, Stéphanie; Kreft, Maaike; Janssen, Hans; Sonnenberg, Arnoud; Glukhova, Marina A

    2011-05-18

    In the functionally differentiated mammary gland, basal myoepithelial cells contract to eject the milk produced by luminal epithelial cells from the body. We report that conditional deletion of a laminin receptor, α3β1 integrin, from myoepithelial cells leads to low rates of milk ejection due to a contractility defect but does not interfere with the integrity or functional differentiation of the mammary epithelium. In lactating mammary gland, in the absence of α3β1, focal adhesion kinase phosphorylation is impaired, the Rho/Rac balance is altered and myosin light-chain (MLC) phosphorylation is sustained. Cultured mammary myoepithelial cells depleted of α3β1 contract in response to oxytocin, but are unable to maintain the state of post-contractile relaxation. The expression of constitutively active Rac or its effector p21-activated kinase (PAK), or treatment with MLC kinase (MLCK) inhibitor, rescues the relaxation capacity of mutant cells, strongly suggesting that α3β1-mediated stimulation of the Rac/PAK pathway is required for the inhibition of MLCK activity, permitting completion of the myoepithelial cell contraction/relaxation cycle and successful lactation. This is the first study highlighting the impact of α3β1 integrin signalling on mammary gland function.

  17. Oncometabolite d-2-hydroxyglutarate impairs α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase and contractile function in rodent heart

    PubMed Central

    Karlstaedt, Anja; Zhang, Xiaotian; Vitrac, Heidi; Harmancey, Romain; Vasquez, Hernan; Wang, Jing Han; Goodell, Margaret A.; Taegtmeyer, Heinrich

    2016-01-01

    Hematologic malignancies are frequently associated with cardiac pathologies. Mutations of isocitrate dehydrogenase 1 and 2 (IDH1/2) occur in a subset of acute myeloid leukemia patients, causing metabolic and epigenetic derangements. We have now discovered that altered metabolism in leukemic cells has a profound effect on cardiac metabolism. Combining mathematical modeling and in vivo as well as ex vivo studies, we found that increased amounts of the oncometabolite d-2-hydroxyglutarate (D2-HG), produced by IDH2 mutant leukemic cells, cause contractile dysfunction in the heart. This contractile dysfunction is associated with impaired oxidative decarboxylation of α-ketoglutarate, a redirection of Krebs cycle intermediates, and increased ATP citrate lyase (ACL) activity. Increased availability of D2-HG also leads to altered histone methylation and acetylation in the heart. We propose that D2-HG promotes cardiac dysfunction by impairing α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase and induces histone modifications in an ACL-dependent manner. Collectively, our results highlight the impact of cancer cell metabolism on function and metabolism of the heart. PMID:27582470

  18. Cardiac Non-myocyte Cells Show Enhanced Pharmacological Function Suggestive of Contractile Maturity in Stem Cell Derived Cardiomyocyte Microtissues

    PubMed Central

    Ravenscroft, Stephanie M.; Pointon, Amy; Williams, Awel W.; Cross, Michael J.; Sidaway, James E.

    2016-01-01

    The immature phenotype of stem cell derived cardiomyocytes is a significant barrier to their use in translational medicine and pre-clinical in vitro drug toxicity and pharmacological analysis. Here we have assessed the contribution of non-myocyte cells on the contractile function of co-cultured human embryonic stem cell derived cardiomyocytes (hESC-CMs) in spheroid microtissue format. Microtissues were formed using a scaffold free 96-well cell suspension method from hESC-CM cultured alone (CM microtissues) or in combination with human primary cardiac microvascular endothelial cells and cardiac fibroblasts (CMEF microtissues). Contractility was characterized with fluorescence and video-based edge detection. CMEF microtissues displayed greater Ca2+ transient amplitudes, enhanced spontaneous contraction rate and remarkably enhanced contractile function in response to both positive and negative inotropic drugs, suggesting a more mature contractile phenotype than CM microtissues. In addition, for several drugs the enhanced contractile response was not apparent when endothelial cell or fibroblasts from a non-cardiac tissue were used as the ancillary cells. Further evidence of maturity for CMEF microtissues was shown with increased expression of genes that encode proteins critical in cardiac Ca2+ handling (S100A1), sarcomere assembly (telethonin/TCAP) and β-adrenergic receptor signalling. Our data shows that compared with single cell-type cardiomyocyte in vitro models, CMEF microtissues are superior at predicting the inotropic effects of drugs, demonstrating the critical contribution of cardiac non-myocyte cells in mediating functional cardiotoxicity. PMID:27125969

  19. Enhanced calcium cycling and contractile function in transgenic hearts expressing constitutively active G alpha o* protein.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Ming; Gach, Agnieszka A; Liu, GongXin; Xu, Xiaomei; Lim, Chee Chew; Zhang, Julie X; Mao, Lan; Chuprun, Kurt; Koch, Walter J; Liao, Ronglih; Koren, Gideon; Blaxall, Burns C; Mende, Ulrike

    2008-03-01

    In contrast to the other heterotrimeric GTP-binding proteins (G proteins) Gs and Gi, the functional role of G o is still poorly defined. To investigate the role of G alpha o in the heart, we generated transgenic mice with cardiac-specific expression of a constitutively active form of G alpha o1* (G alpha o*), the predominant G alpha o isoform in the heart. G alpha o expression was increased 3- to 15-fold in mice from 5 independent lines, all of which had a normal life span and no gross cardiac morphological abnormalities. We demonstrate enhanced contractile function in G alpha o* transgenic mice in vivo, along with increased L-type Ca2+ channel current density, calcium transients, and cell shortening in ventricular G alpha o*-expressing myocytes compared with wild-type controls. These changes were evident at baseline and maintained after isoproterenol stimulation. Expression levels of all major Ca2+ handling proteins were largely unchanged, except for a modest reduction in Na+/Ca2+ exchanger in transgenic ventricles. In contrast, phosphorylation of the ryanodine receptor and phospholamban at known PKA sites was increased 1.6- and 1.9-fold, respectively, in G alpha o* ventricles. Density and affinity of beta-adrenoceptors, cAMP levels, and PKA activity were comparable in G alpha o* and wild-type myocytes, but protein phosphatase 1 activity was reduced upon G alpha o* expression, particularly in the vicinity of the ryanodine receptor. We conclude that G alpha o* exerts a positive effect on Ca2+ cycling and contractile function. Alterations in protein phosphatase 1 activity rather than PKA-mediated phosphorylation might be involved in hyperphosphorylation of key Ca2+ handling proteins in hearts with constitutive G alpha o activation.

  20. Contractile function and energy metabolism of skeletal muscle in rats with secondary carnitine deficiency.

    PubMed

    Roberts, Paul A; Bouitbir, Jamal; Bonifacio, Annalisa; Singh, François; Kaufmann, Priska; Urwyler, Albert; Krähenbühl, Stephan

    2015-08-01

    The consequences of carnitine depletion upon metabolic and contractile characteristics of skeletal muscle remain largely unexplored. Therefore, we investigated the effect of N-trimethyl-hydrazine-3-propionate (THP) administration, a carnitine analog inhibiting carnitine biosynthesis and renal reabsorption of carnitine, on skeletal muscle function and energy metabolism. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were fed a standard rat chow in the absence (CON; n = 8) or presence of THP (n = 8) for 3 wk. Following treatment, rats were fasted for 24 h prior to excision of their soleus and EDL muscles for biochemical characterization at rest and following 5 min of contraction in vitro. THP treatment reduced the carnitine pool by ∼80% in both soleus and EDL muscles compared with CON. Carnitine depletion was associated with a 30% decrease soleus muscle weight, whereas contractile function (expressed per gram of muscle), free coenzyme A, and water content remained unaltered from CON. Muscle fiber distribution and fiber area remained unaffected, whereas markers of apoptosis were increased in soleus muscle of THP-treated rats. In EDL muscle, carnitine depletion was associated with reduced free coenzyme A availability (-25%, P < 0.05), impaired peak tension development (-44%, P < 0.05), and increased glycogen hydrolysis (52%, P < 0.05) during muscle contraction, whereas PDC activation, muscle weight, and water content remained unaltered from CON. In conclusion, myopathy associated with carnitine deficiency can have different causes. Although muscle atrophy, most likely due to increased apoptosis, is predominant in muscle composed predominantly of type I fibers (soleus), disturbance of energy metabolism appears to be the major cause in muscle composed of type II fibers (EDL).

  1. Exposure to low mercury concentration in vivo impairs myocardial contractile function

    SciTech Connect

    Furieri, Lorena Barros; Fioresi, Mirian; Junior, Rogerio Faustino Ribeiro; Bartolome, Maria Visitacion; Fernandes, Aurelia Araujo; Cachofeiro, Victoria; Lahera, Vicente; Salaices, Mercedes; Stefanon, Ivanita; Vassallo, Dalton Valentim

    2011-09-01

    Increased cardiovascular risk after mercury exposure has been described but cardiac effects resulting from controlled chronic treatment are not yet well explored. We analyzed the effects of chronic exposure to low mercury concentrations on hemodynamic and ventricular function of isolated hearts. Wistar rats were treated with HgCl{sub 2} (1st dose 4.6 {mu}g/kg, subsequent dose 0.07 {mu}g/kg/day, im, 30 days) or vehicle. Mercury treatment did not affect blood pressure (BP) nor produced cardiac hypertrophy or changes of myocyte morphometry and collagen content. This treatment: 1) in vivo increased left ventricle end diastolic pressure (LVEDP) without changing left ventricular systolic pressure (LVSP) and heart rate; 2) in isolated hearts reduced LV isovolumic systolic pressure and time derivatives, and {beta}-adrenergic response; 3) increased myosin ATPase activity; 4) reduced Na{sup +}-K{sup +} ATPase (NKA) activity; 5) reduced protein expression of SERCA and phosphorylated phospholamban on serine 16 while phospholamban expression increased; as a consequence SERCA/phospholamban ratio reduced; 6) reduced sodium/calcium exchanger (NCX) protein expression and {alpha}-1 isoform of NKA, whereas {alpha}-2 isoform of NKA did not change. Chronic exposure for 30 days to low concentrations of mercury does not change BP, heart rate or LVSP but produces small but significant increase of LVEDP. However, in isolated hearts mercury treatment promoted contractility dysfunction as a result of the decreased NKA activity, reduction of NCX and SERCA and increased PLB protein expression. These findings offer further evidence that mercury chronic exposure, even at small concentrations, is an environmental risk factor affecting heart function. - Highlights: > Unchanges blood pressure, heart rate, systolic pressure. > Increases end diastolic pressure. > Promotes cardiac contractility dysfunction. > Decreases NKA activity, NCX and SERCA, increases PLB protein expression. > Small

  2. Microtubule depolymerization normalizes in vivo myocardial contractile function in dogs with pressure-overload left ventricular hypertrophy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Koide, M.; Hamawaki, M.; Narishige, T.; Sato, H.; Nemoto, S.; DeFreyte, G.; Zile, M. R.; Cooper G, I. V.; Carabello, B. A.

    2000-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Because initially compensatory myocardial hypertrophy in response to pressure overloading may eventually decompensate to myocardial failure, mechanisms responsible for this transition have long been sought. One such mechanism established in vitro is densification of the cellular microtubule network, which imposes a viscous load that inhibits cardiocyte contraction. METHODS AND RESULTS: In the present study, we extended this in vitro finding to the in vivo level and tested the hypothesis that this cytoskeletal abnormality is important in the in vivo contractile dysfunction that occurs in experimental aortic stenosis in the adult dog. In 8 dogs in which gradual stenosis of the ascending aorta had caused severe left ventricular (LV) pressure overloading (gradient, 152+/-16 mm Hg) with contractile dysfunction, LV function was measured at baseline and 1 hour after the intravenous administration of colchicine. Cardiocytes obtained by biopsy before and after in vivo colchicine administration were examined in tandem. Microtubule depolymerization restored LV contractile function both in vivo and in vitro. CONCLUSIONS: These and additional corroborative data show that increased cardiocyte microtubule network density is an important mechanism for the ventricular contractile dysfunction that develops in large mammals with adult-onset pressure-overload-induced cardiac hypertrophy.

  3. Chronic administration of taurine to aged rats improves the electrical and contractile properties of skeletal muscle fibers.

    PubMed

    Pierno, S; De Luca, A; Camerino, C; Huxtable, R J; Camerino, D C

    1998-09-01

    improved the mechanical threshold for contraction of striated fibers which in aged rats is shifted toward more negative potentials, moving it toward the adult values. Our results suggest that the reduction of taurine content could play a role in the alteration of electrical and contractile properties observed during aging. These findings may indicate a potential application of taurine in ensuring normal muscle function in the elderly.

  4. Leptin Attenuates the Contractile Function of Adult Rat Cardiomyocytes Involved in Oxidative Stress and Autophagy

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Liu-Jin; Liu, Ying-Ping; Yuan, Xun; Zhang, Gui-Ping; Hou, Ning; Wu, Xiao-Qian; Luo, Jian-Dong; Zhang, Gen-Shui

    2016-01-01

    Background Leptin has been identified as an important protein involved in obesity. As a chronic metabolic disorder, obesity is associated with a high risk of developing cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, including heart failure. The aim of this paper was to investigate the effects and the mechanism of leptin on the contractile function of cardiomyocytes in the adult rat. Methods Isolated adult rat cardiomyocytes were exposed to leptin (1, 10, and 100 nmol/L) for 1 hour. The calcium transients and the contraction of adult rat cardiomyocytes were recorded with SoftEdge MyoCam system. Apocynin, tempol and rapamycin were added respectively, and Western blotting was employed to evaluate the expression of LC3B and Beclin-1. Results The peak shortening and maximal velocity of shortening/relengthening (± dL/dtmax) of cell shortening were significantly decreased, and the time to 50% relengthening was prolonged with leptin perfusion. Leptin also significantly reduced the baseline, peak and time to 50% baseline of calcium transient. Leptin attenuated autophagy as indicated by decreased LC3-II and Beclin-1. All of the abnormalities were significantly attenuated by apocynin, tempol or rapamycin. Conclusions Our results indicated that leptin depressed the intracellular free calcium and myocardial systolic function via increasing oxidative stress and inhibiting autophagy. PMID:27899860

  5. Alteration of Contractile Function and Calcium Ion Movements in Vascular Smooth Muscle by Gentamicin and Other Aminoglycoside Antibiotics

    PubMed Central

    Adams, H. Richard; Goodman, Frank R.; Weiss, George B.

    1974-01-01

    Experiments were conducted to examine the effects of certain aminoglycoside antibiotics on contractile responses and related calcium ion (Ca2+) movements in isolated vascular smooth muscle. Gentamicin, kanamycin, and streptomycin decreased contractile responses produced by norepinephrine, histamine, and high K+ in rabbit aortic strips. The inhibitory action of these antibiotics on mechanical function was more pronounced when the Ca2+ concentration of the bathing solution was decreased from 1.5 mM (normal Ca2+ solution) to 0.05 mM (low Ca2+ solution). The uptake of radiocalcium (45Ca) into the isolated media-intimal layer of rabbit aortae was decreased in a maintained manner by each antibiotic. With gentamicin, the inhibitory effect on 45Ca uptake was shown to be dependent upon the concentration of gentamicin employed and to be more evident in a 0.1 mM Ca2+ solution than in a normal Ca2+ solution. In addition, the rate of 45Ca efflux from the rabbit aortic media-intimal layer was increased in a sustained manner by gentamicin, streptomycin, and kanamycin. Furthermore, contractile responses induced by high K+ and norepinephrine in canine carotid arterial strips were inhibited by gentamicin. Present findings indicate that aminoglycoside antibiotics interfere with Ca2+-linked events leading to activation of the contractile mechanism of vascular smooth muscle. These in vitro findings may partially explain the occurrence of in vivo cardiovascular depression that has occasionally been observed after the administration of chemically related antimicrobial agents. PMID:15825418

  6. Molecular and functional analyses of the contractile apparatus in lymphatic muscle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Muthuchamy, Mariappan; Gashev, Anatoliy; Boswell, Niven; Dawson, Nancy; Zawieja, David; Delp, Z. (Principal Investigator)

    2003-01-01

    Lymphatics are necessary for the generation and regulation of lymph flow. Lymphatics use phasic contractions and extrinsic compressions to generate flow; tonic contractions alter resistance. Lymphatic muscle exhibits important differences from typical vascular smooth muscle. In this study, the thoracic duct exhibited significant functional differences from mesenteric lymphatics. To understand the molecular basis for these differences, we examined the profiles of contractile proteins and their messages in mesenteric lymphatics, thoracic duct, and arterioles. Results demonstrated that mesenteric lymphatics express only SMB smooth muscle myosin heavy chain (SM-MHC), whereas thoracic duct and arterioles expressed both SMA and SMB isoforms. Both SM1 and SM2 isoforms of SM-MHC were detected in arterioles and mesenteric and thoracic lymphatics. In addition, the fetal cardiac/skeletal slow-twitch muscle-specific beta-MHC message was detected only in mesenteric lymphatics. All four actin messages, cardiac alpha-actin, vascular alpha-actin, enteric gamma-actin, and skeletal alpha-actin, were present in both mesenteric lymphatics and arterioles. However, in thoracic duct, predominantly cardiac alpha-actin and vascular alpha-actin were found. Western blot and immunohistochemical analyses corroborated the mRNA studies. However, in arterioles only vascular alpha-actin protein was detected. These data indicate that lymphatics display genotypic and phenotypic characteristics of vascular, cardiac, and visceral myocytes, which are needed to fulfill the unique roles of the lymphatic system.

  7. Post-exercise contractility, diastolic function, and pressure: Operator-independent sensor-based intelligent monitoring for heart failure telemedicine

    PubMed Central

    Bombardini, Tonino; Gemignani, Vincenzo; Bianchini, Elisabetta; Pasanisi, Emilio; Pratali, Lorenza; Pianelli, Mascia; Faita, Francesco; Giannoni, Massimo; Arpesella, Giorgio; Sicari, Rosa; Picano, Eugenio

    2009-01-01

    Background New sensors for intelligent remote monitoring of the heart should be developed. Recently, a cutaneous force-frequency relation recording system has been validated based on heart sound amplitude and timing variations at increasing heart rates. Aim To assess sensor-based post-exercise contractility, diastolic function and pressure in normal and diseased hearts as a model of a wireless telemedicine system. Methods We enrolled 150 patients and 22 controls referred for exercise-stress echocardiography, age 55 ± 18 years. The sensor was attached in the precordial region by an ECG electrode. Stress and recovery contractility were derived by first heart sound amplitude vibration changes; diastolic times were acquired continuously. Systemic pressure changes were quantitatively documented by second heart sound recording. Results Interpretable sensor recordings were obtained in all patients (feasibility = 100%). Post-exercise contractility overshoot (defined as increase > 10% of recovery contractility vs exercise value) was more frequent in patients than controls (27% vs 8%, p < 0.05). At 100 bpm stress heart rate, systolic/diastolic time ratio (normal, < 1) was > 1 in 20 patients and in none of the controls (p < 0.01); at recovery systolic/diastolic ratio was > 1 in only 3 patients (p < 0.01 vs stress). Post-exercise reduced arterial pressure was sensed. Conclusion Post-exercise contractility, diastolic time and pressure changes can be continuously measured by a cutaneous sensor. Heart disease affects not only exercise systolic performance, but also post-exercise recovery, diastolic time intervals and blood pressure changes – in our study, all of these were monitored by a non-invasive wearable sensor. PMID:19442285

  8. Epidermal growth factor improves the migration and contractility of aged fibroblasts cultured on 3D collagen matrices.

    PubMed

    Kim, Daehwan; Kim, So Young; Mun, Seog Kyun; Rhee, Sangmyung; Kim, Beom Joon

    2015-04-01

    Epidermal growth factor (EGF) plays a critical role in fibroblasts by stimulating the production of collagen and supports cell renewal through the interaction between keratinocytes and fibroblasts. It is well known that the contractile activity of fibroblasts is required for the remodeling of the extracellular matrix (ECM), which contributes to skin elasticity. However, the role of EGF in the contraction of aged fibroblasts under 3-dimensional (3D) culture conditions is not yet fully understood. In the present study, we demonstrated that young fibroblasts spread and proliferated more rapidly than aged fibroblasts under 2-dimensional (2D) culture conditions. Cell migration assay using a nested collagen matrix revealed that the migration of young fibroblasts was also greater than that of aged fibroblasts under 3D culture conditions. However, the addition of recombinant human EGF (rhEGF) resulted in the enhanced migration of aged fibroblasts; the migration rate was similar to that of the young fibroblasts. The aged fibroblasts showed decreased cluster formation compared with the young fibroblasts on the collagen matrix, which was improved by the addition of rhEGF. Furthermore, cell contraction assay revealed that the basal contractility of the aged fibroblasts was lower than that of the young fibroblasts; however, following treatment with rhEGF, the contractility was restored to levels similar or even higher to those of the young fibroblasts. Taken together, our results suggest that rhEGF is a potential renewal agent that acts to improve the migration and contraction of aged fibroblasts more efficiently than young fibroblasts under 3D culture conditions; thus, EGF may have valuable regenerative effects on aged skin.

  9. Impaired contractile function due to decreased cardiac myosin binding protein C content in the sarcomere

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Y.; Wan, X.; McElfresh, T. A.; Chen, X.; Gresham, K. S.; Rosenbaum, D. S.; Chandler, M. P.

    2013-01-01

    Mutations in cardiac myosin binding protein C (MyBP-C) are a common cause of familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (FHC). The majority of MyBP-C mutations are expected to reduce MyBP-C expression; however, the consequences of MyBP-C deficiency on the regulation of myofilament function, Ca2+ homeostasis, and in vivo cardiac function are unknown. To elucidate the effects of decreased MyBP-C expression on cardiac function, we employed MyBP-C heterozygous null (MyBP-C+/−) mice presenting decreases in MyBP-C expression (32%) similar to those of FHC patients carrying MyBP-C mutations. The levels of MyBP-C phosphorylation were reduced 53% in MyBP-C+/− hearts compared with wild-type hearts. Skinned myocardium isolated from MyBP-C+/− hearts displayed decreased cross-bridge stiffness at half-maximal Ca2+ activations, increased steady-state force generation, and accelerated rates of cross-bridge recruitment at low Ca2+ activations (<15% and <25% of maximum, respectively). Protein kinase A treatment abolished basal differences in rates of cross-bridge recruitment between MyBP-C+/− and wild-type myocardium. Intact ventricular myocytes from MyBP-C+/− hearts displayed abnormal sarcomere shortening but unchanged Ca2+ transient kinetics. Despite a lack of left ventricular hypertrophy, MyBP-C+/− hearts exhibited elevated end-diastolic pressure and decreased peak rate of LV pressure rise, which was normalized following dobutamine infusion. Furthermore, electrocardiogram recordings in conscious MyBP-C+/− mice revealed prolonged QRS and QT intervals, which are known risk factors for cardiac arrhythmia. Collectively, our data show that reduced MyBP-C expression and phosphorylation in the sarcomere result in myofilament dysfunction, contributing to contractile dysfunction that precedes compensatory adaptations in Ca2+ handling, and chamber remodeling. Perturbations in mechanical and electrical activity in MyBP-C+/− mice could increase their susceptibility to cardiac

  10. Insoluble elastin reduces collagen scaffold stiffness, improves viscoelastic properties, and induces a contractile phenotype in smooth muscle cells.

    PubMed

    Ryan, Alan J; O'Brien, Fergal J

    2015-12-01

    Biomaterials with the capacity to innately guide cell behaviour while also displaying suitable mechanical properties remain a challenge in tissue engineering. Our approach to this has been to utilise insoluble elastin in combination with collagen as the basis of a biomimetic scaffold for cardiovascular tissue engineering. Elastin was found to markedly alter the mechanical and biological response of these collagen-based scaffolds. Specifically, during extensive mechanical assessment elastin was found to reduce the specific tensile and compressive moduli of the scaffolds in a concentration dependant manner while having minimal effect on scaffold microarchitecture with both scaffold porosity and pore size still within the ideal ranges for tissue engineering applications. However, the viscoelastic properties were significantly improved with elastin addition with a 3.5-fold decrease in induced creep strain, a 6-fold increase in cyclical strain recovery, and with a four-parameter viscoelastic model confirming the ability of elastin to confer resistance to long term deformation/creep. Furthermore, elastin was found to result in the modulation of SMC phenotype towards a contractile state which was determined via reduced proliferation and significantly enhanced expression of early (α-SMA), mid (calponin), and late stage (SM-MHC) contractile proteins. This allows the ability to utilise extracellular matrix proteins alone to modulate SMC phenotype without any exogenous factors added. Taken together, the ability of elastin to alter the mechanical and biological response of collagen scaffolds has led to the development of a biomimetic biomaterial highly suitable for cardiovascular tissue engineering.

  11. α,β-Unsaturated aldehyde pollutant acrolein suppresses cardiomyocyte contractile function: Role of TRPV1 and oxidative stress.

    PubMed

    Wu, Zhenbiao; He, Emily Y; Scott, Glenda I; Ren, Jun

    2015-01-01

    Air pollution is associated with an increased prevalence of heart disease and is known to trigger a proinflammatory response via stimulation of transient receptor potential vanilloid cation channels (TRPV1, also known as the capsaicin receptor). This study was designed to examine the effect of acrolein, an essential α,β-unsaturated aldehyde pollutant, on myocardial contractile function and the underlying mechanism involved with a focus on TRPV1 and oxidative stress. Cardiomyocyte mechanical and intracellular Ca(2+) properties were evaluated using an IonOptix MyoCam® system including peak shortening (PS), maximal velocity of shortening/relengthening (± dL/dt), time-to-PS (TPS), time-to-90% relengthening (TR90 ), fura-2 fluorescence intensity (FFI) and intracellular Ca(2+) decay. Changes in apoptosis and TRPV1 were evaluated using Western blot analysis. The degree of oxidative stress was assessed using the ratio between reduced and oxidized glutathione. Results obtained revealed that exposure of cardiomyocytes to acrolein acutely compromised contractile and intracellular Ca(2+) properties including depressed PS, ± dL/dt and ΔFFI, as well as prolonged TR90 and intracellular Ca(2+) decay. In addition, acrolein exposure upregulated TRPV1 associated with an increase in both apoptosis and oxidative stress. However, the acrolein-induced cardiomyocyte contractile and intracellular Ca(2+) anomalies, as well as apoptosis (as evidenced by Bcl-2, Bax, FasL, Caspase-3 and -8), were negated by the reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenger glutathione or the TRPV1 antagonist capsazepine. Collectively these data suggest that the α,β-unsaturated aldehyde pollutant acrolein may play a role in the pathogenesis and sequelae of air pollution-induced heart disease via a TRPV1- and oxidative stress-dependent mechanism.

  12. The sensitivity of fast muscle contractile function to the major components of the sarcomere Ca(2+)-cycling system.

    PubMed

    Golding, C; Kelly, K; Kinsey, S T; Locke, B R

    2016-04-01

    A reaction-diffusion model of a muscle sarcomere was developed to evaluate the sensitivity of force characteristics to diffusion and Ca(2+)-cycling components. The model compared well to experimental force measurements. Diffusion led to Ca(2+) gradients that enhanced maximal force and accelerated relaxation compared to when diffusion was infinitely fast. However, a modest increase in sarcomere length or radius led to a decrease in maximal force. Lowering the Ca(2+) release rate caused a lower maximal force, but increasing the rate led to only modest gains in maximal force while incurring much greater ATP costs associated with reuptake. Greater parvalbumin binding rates decreased maximal force but enhanced relaxation, and this effect was magnified when Ca(2+) uptake rates were lowered as may occur during fatigue. These results show a physiological set of parameters that lead to a functional sarcomere of known dimensions and contractile function, and the effects of parameter variation on muscle function.

  13. Insulin resistance improves metabolic and contractile efficiency in stressed rat heart.

    PubMed

    Harmancey, Romain; Lam, Truong N; Lubrano, Genna M; Guthrie, Patrick H; Vela, Deborah; Taegtmeyer, Heinrich

    2012-08-01

    Insulin resistance is a prominent feature in heart failure, while hyperglycemia impairs cardiac contraction. We propose that decreased insulin-mediated glucose uptake by the heart preserves cardiac function in response to metabolic and hemodynamic stress. To test this hypothesis, we fed rats a high-sucrose diet (HSD). Energy substrate metabolism and cardiac work were determined ex vivo in a sequential protocol simulating metabolic and hemodynamic stress. Compared to chow-fed, control rats, HSD impaired myocardial insulin responsiveness and induced profound metabolic changes in the heart, characterized by reduced rates of glucose uptake (7.91 ± 0.30 vs. 10.73 ± 0.67 μmol/min/g dry weight; P<0.001) but increased rates of glucose oxidation (2.38 ± 0.17 vs. 1.50 ± 0.15 μmol/min/g dry weight; P<0.001) and oleate oxidation (2.29 ± 0.11 vs. 1.96 ± 0.12 μmol/min/g dry weight; P<0.05). Tight coupling of glucose uptake and oxidation and improved cardiac efficiency were associated with a reduction in glucose 6-phosphate and oleoyl-CoA levels, as well as a reduction in the content of uncoupling protein 3. Our results suggest that insulin resistance lessens fuel toxicity in the stressed heart. This calls for a new exploration of the mechanisms regulating substrate uptake and oxidation in the insulin-resistant heart.

  14. Inhibition of Contractile Function in Human Joint Capsule Myofibroblasts by Targeting the TGF-β1 and PDGF Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Anne; Ritz, Ulrike; Baranowski, Andreas; Ossendorf, Christian; Rommens, Pol M.; Hofmann, Alexander

    2016-01-01

    Background Contractile myofibroblasts (MFs) accumulate in the joint capsules of patients suffering from posttraumatic joint stiffness. MF activation is controlled by a complex local network of growth factors and cytokines, ending in the increased production of extracellular matrix components followed by soft tissue contracture. Despite the tremendous growth of knowledge in this field, inconsistencies remain in practice and prevention. Methods and Findings In this in vitro study, we isolated and cultured alpha-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) positive human joint capsule MFs from biopsy specimens and investigated the effect of profibrotic and antifibrotic agents on MF function. Both TGF-β1 and PDGF significantly induced proliferation and increased extracellular matrix contraction in an established 3D collagen gel contraction model. Furthermore, both growth factors induced α-SMA and collagen type I gene expression in MFs. TGF-β1 down-regulated TGF-β1 and TGF-β receptor (R) 1 and receptor (R) 2 gene expression, while PDGF selectively down-regulated TGF-β receptor 2 gene expression. These effects were blocked by suramin. Interestingly, the anti-oxidant agent superoxide dismutase (SOD) blocked TGF-β1 induced proliferation and collagen gel contraction without modulating the gene expression of α-SMA, collagen type I, TGF-β1, TGF-β R1 and TGF-β R2. Conclusions Our results provide evidence that targeting the TGF-β1 and PDGF pathways in human joint capsule MFs affects their contractile function. TGF-β1 may modulate MF function in the joint capsule not only via the receptor signalling pathway but also by regulating the production of profibrotic reactive oxygen species (ROS). In particular, anti-oxidant agents could offer promising options in developing strategies for the prevention and treatment of posttraumatic joint stiffness in humans. PMID:26730954

  15. Functional Loss of Bmsei Causes Thermosensitive Epilepsy in Contractile Mutant Silkworm, Bombyx mori

    PubMed Central

    Nie, Hongyi; Cheng, Tingcai; Huang, Xiaofeng; Zhou, Mengting; Zhang, Yinxia; Dai, Fangyin; Mita, Kazuei; Xia, Qingyou; Liu, Chun

    2015-01-01

    The thermoprotective mechanisms of insects remain largely unknown. We reported the Bombyx mori contractile (cot) behavioral mutant with thermo-sensitive seizures phenotype. At elevated temperatures, the cot mutant exhibit seizures associated with strong contractions, rolling, vomiting, and a temporary lack of movement. We narrowed a region containing cot to ~268 kb by positional cloning and identified the mutant gene as Bmsei which encoded a potassium channel protein. Bmsei was present in both the cell membrane and cytoplasm in wild-type ganglia but faint in cot. Furthermore, Bmsei was markedly decreased upon high temperature treatment in cot mutant. With the RNAi method and injecting potassium channel blockers, the wild type silkworm was induced the cot phenotype. These results demonstrated that Bmsei was responsible for the cot mutant phenotype and played an important role in thermoprotection in silkworm. Meanwhile, comparative proteomic approach was used to investigate the proteomic differences. The results showed that the protein of Hsp-1 and Tn1 were significantly decreased and increased on protein level in cot mutant after thermo-stimulus, respectively. Our data provide insights into the mechanism of thermoprotection in insect. As cot phenotype closely resembles human epilepsy, cot might be a potential model for the mechanism of epilepsy in future. PMID:26198671

  16. Functional Loss of Bmsei Causes Thermosensitive Epilepsy in Contractile Mutant Silkworm, Bombyx mori

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nie, Hongyi; Cheng, Tingcai; Huang, Xiaofeng; Zhou, Mengting; Zhang, Yinxia; Dai, Fangyin; Mita, Kazuei; Xia, Qingyou; Liu, Chun

    2015-07-01

    The thermoprotective mechanisms of insects remain largely unknown. We reported the Bombyx mori contractile (cot) behavioral mutant with thermo-sensitive seizures phenotype. At elevated temperatures, the cot mutant exhibit seizures associated with strong contractions, rolling, vomiting, and a temporary lack of movement. We narrowed a region containing cot to ~268 kb by positional cloning and identified the mutant gene as Bmsei which encoded a potassium channel protein. Bmsei was present in both the cell membrane and cytoplasm in wild-type ganglia but faint in cot. Furthermore, Bmsei was markedly decreased upon high temperature treatment in cot mutant. With the RNAi method and injecting potassium channel blockers, the wild type silkworm was induced the cot phenotype. These results demonstrated that Bmsei was responsible for the cot mutant phenotype and played an important role in thermoprotection in silkworm. Meanwhile, comparative proteomic approach was used to investigate the proteomic differences. The results showed that the protein of Hsp-1 and Tn1 were significantly decreased and increased on protein level in cot mutant after thermo-stimulus, respectively. Our data provide insights into the mechanism of thermoprotection in insect. As cot phenotype closely resembles human epilepsy, cot might be a potential model for the mechanism of epilepsy in future.

  17. Potential involvement of dietary advanced glycation end products in impairment of skeletal muscle growth and muscle contractile function in mice.

    PubMed

    Egawa, Tatsuro; Tsuda, Satoshi; Goto, Ayumi; Ohno, Yoshitaka; Yokoyama, Shingo; Goto, Katsumasa; Hayashi, Tatsuya

    2017-01-01

    Diets enriched with advanced glycation end products (AGE) have recently been related to muscle dysfunction processes. However, it remains unclear whether long-term exposure to an AGE-enriched diet impacts physiological characteristics of skeletal muscles. Therefore, we explored the differences in skeletal muscle mass, contractile function and molecular responses between mice receiving a diet high in AGE (H-AGE) and low in AGE (L-AGE) for 16 weeks. There were no significant differences between L-AGE and H-AGE mice with regard to body weight, food intake or epididymal fat pad weight. However, extensor digitorum longus (EDL) and plantaris (PLA) muscle weights in H-AGE mice were lower compared with L-AGE mice. Higher levels of N ε -(carboxymethyl)-l-lysine, a marker for AGE, in EDL muscles of H-AGE mice were observed compared with L-AGE mice. H-AGE mice showed lower muscle strength and endurance in vivo and lower muscle force production of PLA muscle in vitro. mRNA expression levels of myogenic factors including myogenic factor 5 and myogenic differentiation in EDL muscle were lower in H-AGE mice compared with L-AGE mice. The phosphorylation status of 70-kDa ribosomal protein S6 kinase Thr389, an indicator of protein synthesis signalling, was lower in EDL muscle of H-AGE mice than that of L-AGE mice. These findings suggest that long-term exposure to an AGE-enriched diet impairs skeletal muscle growth and muscle contractile function, and that these muscle dysfunctions may be attributed to the inhibition of myogenic potential and protein synthesis.

  18. Effects of the calcium antagonists perhexiline and cinnarizine on vascular and cardiac contractile protein function.

    PubMed

    Silver, P J; Dachiw, J; Ambrose, J M; Pinto, P B

    1985-09-01

    The weakly basic, lipophilic Ca++ antagonists perhexiline and cinnarizine have been compared with the calmodulin inhibitor W-7 and the cardiotonics Vardax and APP-201-533 for the ability to modulate Ca++-dependent contractile protein interactions directly, as well as Ca++-calmodulin-mediated myosin light chain phosphorylation, in arterial actomyosin or cardiac myofibrils. Both perhexiline and cinnarizine inhibited arterial myosin P-light chain phosphorylation and superprecipitation of arterial actomyosin over the concentration range of 10 to 200 microM. Concomitant inhibition of arterial superprecipitation and phosphorylation by perhexiline (IC50 = 33 microM) and cinnarizine (IC50 = 60 microM) was similar to W-7 (IC50 = 35 microM), and was characterized by a rightward shift in the pCa superprecipitation and pCa-light chain phosphorylation relationships, depressed maximum activity and attenuation by 2 microM exogenous calmodulin. However, whereas inhibition of superprecipitation and P-light chain phosphorylation by W-7 was equal at different Mg++ concentrations, relatively greater inhibition with perhexiline and less inhibition with cinnarizine was apparent as the free Mg++ concentration was lowered. In cardiac myofibrils prepared from both bovine and canine ventricles, perhexiline stimulated Mg-adenosine triphosphatase (ATPase) activity and cinnarizine was without effect, whereas W-7 significantly depressed ATPase activity. Perhexiline was 10-fold more potent and 3-fold more efficacious than either Vardax or APP-201-533 in canine cardiac myofibrils. Whereas APP-201-533 increased Ca++ sensitivity and maximum ATPase activity (Vmax), perhexiline increased Ca++ sensitivity, but not Vmax, and W-7 depressed both parameters.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  19. Abnormalities in intracellular calcium regulation and contractile function in myocardium from dogs with pacing-induced heart failure

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Perreault, C. L.; Shannon, R. P.; Komamura, K.; Vatner, S. F.; Morgan, J. P.

    1992-01-01

    24 d of rapid ventricular pacing induced dilated cardiomyopathy with both systolic and diastolic dysfunction in conscious, chronically instrumented dogs. We studied mechanical properties and intracellular calcium (Ca2+i) transients of trabeculae carneae isolated from 15 control dogs (n = 32) and 11 dogs with pacing-induced cardiac failure (n = 26). Muscles were stretched to maximum length at 30 degrees C and stimulated at 0.33 Hz; a subset (n = 17 control, n = 17 myopathic) was loaded with the [Ca2+]i indicator aequorin. Peak tension was depressed in the myopathic muscles, even in the presence of maximally effective (i.e., 16 mM) [Ca2+] in the perfusate. However, peak [Ca2+]i was similar (0.80 +/- 0.13 vs. 0.71 +/- 0.05 microM; [Ca2+]o = 2.5 mM), suggesting that a decrease in Cai2+ availability was not responsible for the decreased contractility. The time for decline from the peak of the Cai2+ transient was prolonged in the myopathic group, which correlated with prolongation of isometric contraction and relaxation. However, similar end-diastolic [Ca2+]i was achieved in both groups (0.29 +/- 0.05 vs. 0.31 +/- 0.02 microM), indicating that Cai2+ homeostasis can be maintained in myopathic hearts. The inotropic response of the myopathic muscles to milrinone was depressed compared with the controls. However, when cAMP production was stimulated by pretreatment with forskolin, the response of the myopathic muscles to milrinone was improved. Our findings provide direct evidence that abnormal [Ca2+]i handling is an important cause of contractile dysfunction in dogs with pacing-induced heart failure and suggest that deficient production of cAMP may be an important cause of these changes in excitation-contraction coupling.

  20. Expression of mitochondrial regulatory genes parallels respiratory capacity and contractile function in a rat model of hypoxia-induced right ventricular hypertrophy

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Chronic hypobaric hypoxia (CHH) increases load on the right ventricle (RV) resulting in RV hypertrophy. We hypothesized that CHH elicits distinct responses, i.e., the hypertrophied RV, unlike the left ventricle (LV), displaying enhanced mitochondrial respiratory and contractile function. Wistar rats...

  1. Attenuated Recovery of Contractile Function in Aging Hearts Following Global Ischemia/Reperfusion: Role of Extracellular HSP27 and TLR4

    PubMed Central

    Ao, Lihua; Zhai, Yufeng; Jin, Chunhua; Cleveland, Joseph C; Fullerton, David A; Meng, Xianzhong

    2016-01-01

    While cardiac functional recovery is attenuated in the elderly following cardiac surgery with obligatory global myocardial ischemia/reperfusion (I/R), the underlying mechanism remains incompletely understood. We observed previously that human and mouse myocardium releases heat shock protein (HSP) 27 during global I/R. Extracellular HSP27 induces myocardial inflammatory response and plays a role in postischemic cardiac dysfunction in adult mouse hearts. This study was to determine the role of extracellular HSP27 and Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) in the attenuated functional recovery in aging mouse hearts following global I/R. Hearts isolated from aging (18–24 months) and adult (4–6 months) mice were subjected to ex vivo global I/R. Augmented release of HSP27 in aging hearts was associated with greater production of cytokines (TNF-α and IL-1β) and worse functional recovery. Anti-HSP27 suppressed the inflammatory response and markedly improved functional recovery in aging hearts. Perfusion of recombinant HSP27 to aging hearts resulted in greater cytokine production and more severe contractile depression in comparison to adult hearts. TLR4 deficiency abolished cytokine production and functional injury in aging hearts exposed to recombinant HSP27. Interestingly, aging hearts had higher TLR4 protein levels and displayed enhanced TLR4-mediated NF-κB activation following HSP27 stimulation or I/R. Extracellular HSP27 and TLR4 jointly enhance the inflammatory response and hamper functional recovery following I/R in aging hearts. The enhanced inflammatory response to global I/R and attenuated postischemic functional recovery in aging hearts are due, at least in part, to augmented myocardial release of HSP27 and elevated myocardial TLR4 levels. PMID:28079228

  2. Micropost arrays for measuring stem cell-derived cardiomyocyte contractility

    PubMed Central

    Beussman, Kevin M.; Rodriguez, Marita L.; Leonard, Andrea; Taparia, Nikita; Thompson, Curtis R.; Sniadecki, Nathan J.

    2015-01-01

    Stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes have the potential to be used to study heart disease and maturation, screen drug treatments, and restore heart function. Here, we discuss the procedures involved in using micropost arrays to measure the contractile forces generated by stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes. Cardiomyocyte contractility is needed for the heart to pump blood, so measuring the contractile forces of cardiomyocytes is a straightforward way to assess their function. Microfabrication and soft lithography techniques are utilized to create identical arrays of flexible, silicone microposts from a common master. Micropost arrays are functionalized with extracellular matrix protein to allow cardiomyocytes to adhere to the tips of the microposts. Live imaging is used to capture videos of the deflection of microposts caused by the contraction of the cardiomyocytes. Image analysis code provides an accurate means to quantify these deflections. The contractile forces produced by a beating cardiomyocyte are calculated by modeling the microposts as cantilever beams. We have used this assay to assess techniques for improving the maturation and contractile function of stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes. PMID:26344757

  3. Melatonin treatment reverts age-related changes in Guinea pig gallbladder neuromuscular transmission and contractility.

    PubMed

    Gomez-Pinilla, Pedro J; Camello-Almaraz, Cristina; Moreno, Rosario; Camello, Pedro J; Pozo, María J

    2006-11-01

    The incidence of gallbladder illness increases with age, but the altered mechanisms leading to gallbladder dysfunction are poorly understood. Here we determine the age-related alterations in gallbladder contractility and the impact of melatonin treatment. Isometric tension changes in response to electrical field stimulation and to agonists were recorded from guinea pig gallbladder muscle strips. [Ca(2+)](i) was determined by epifluorescence microscopy in fura-2 loaded isolated gallbladder smooth muscle cells, and F-actin content was quantified by confocal microscopy. Aging reduced neurogenic contractions, which was associated with the impairment of nitrergic innervation and with increased responsiveness of capsaicin-sensitive relaxant nerves, possibly involving calcitonin gene-related peptide. Melatonin treatment for 4 weeks restored neurogenic responses to normal values, with an associated recovery of nitrergic function and the disappearance of the capsaicin-sensitive component. Aging also reduced the contractile responses to cholecystokinin and Ca(2+) influx. The impaired contractility only correlated with diminished Ca(2+) mobilization in response to activation of Ca(2+) influx. Melatonin improved contractility and increased smooth muscle F-actin content without changing Ca(2+) homeostasis. In conclusion, aging impairs gallbladder function as the result of changes in the inhibitory neuromodulation of smooth muscle contractility and the reduction in the myogenic response to contractile agonists. Impaired contractility seems to be related to decreased Ca(2+) influx and damage of contractile proteins. Melatonin significantly ameliorated these age-related changes.

  4. Contractility parameters of human β-cardiac myosin with the hypertrophic cardiomyopathy mutation R403Q show loss of motor function.

    PubMed

    Nag, Suman; Sommese, Ruth F; Ujfalusi, Zoltan; Combs, Ariana; Langer, Stephen; Sutton, Shirley; Leinwand, Leslie A; Geeves, Michael A; Ruppel, Kathleen M; Spudich, James A

    2015-10-01

    Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is the most frequently occurring inherited cardiovascular disease. It is caused by mutations in genes encoding the force-generating machinery of the cardiac sarcomere, including human β-cardiac myosin. We present a detailed characterization of the most debated HCM-causing mutation in human β-cardiac myosin, R403Q. Despite numerous studies, most performed with nonhuman or noncardiac myosin, there is no consensus about the mechanism of action of this mutation on the function of the enzyme. We use recombinant human β-cardiac myosin and new methodologies to characterize in vitro contractility parameters of the R403Q myosin compared to wild type. We extend our studies beyond pure actin filaments to include the interaction of myosin with regulated actin filaments containing tropomyosin and troponin. We find that, with pure actin, the intrinsic force generated by R403Q is ~15% lower than that generated by wild type. The unloaded velocity is, however, ~10% higher for R403Q myosin, resulting in a load-dependent velocity curve that has the characteristics of lower contractility at higher external loads compared to wild type. With regulated actin filaments, there is no increase in the unloaded velocity and the contractility of the R403Q myosin is lower than that of wild type at all loads. Unlike that with pure actin, the actin-activated adenosine triphosphatase activity for R403Q myosin with Ca(2+)-regulated actin filaments is ~30% lower than that for wild type, predicting a lower unloaded duty ratio of the motor. Overall, the contractility parameters studied fit with a loss of human β-cardiac myosin contractility as a result of the R403Q mutation.

  5. Contractility parameters of human β-cardiac myosin with the hypertrophic cardiomyopathy mutation R403Q show loss of motor function

    PubMed Central

    Nag, Suman; Sommese, Ruth F.; Ujfalusi, Zoltan; Combs, Ariana; Langer, Stephen; Sutton, Shirley; Leinwand, Leslie A.; Geeves, Michael A.; Ruppel, Kathleen M.; Spudich, James A.

    2015-01-01

    Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is the most frequently occurring inherited cardiovascular disease. It is caused by mutations in genes encoding the force-generating machinery of the cardiac sarcomere, including human β-cardiac myosin. We present a detailed characterization of the most debated HCM-causing mutation in human β-cardiac myosin, R403Q. Despite numerous studies, most performed with nonhuman or noncardiac myosin, there is no consensus about the mechanism of action of this mutation on the function of the enzyme. We use recombinant human β-cardiac myosin and new methodologies to characterize in vitro contractility parameters of the R403Q myosin compared to wild type. We extend our studies beyond pure actin filaments to include the interaction of myosin with regulated actin filaments containing tropomyosin and troponin. We find that, with pure actin, the intrinsic force generated by R403Q is ~15% lower than that generated by wild type. The unloaded velocity is, however, ~10% higher for R403Q myosin, resulting in a load-dependent velocity curve that has the characteristics of lower contractility at higher external loads compared to wild type. With regulated actin filaments, there is no increase in the unloaded velocity and the contractility of the R403Q myosin is lower than that of wild type at all loads. Unlike that with pure actin, the actin-activated adenosine triphosphatase activity for R403Q myosin with Ca2+-regulated actin filaments is ~30% lower than that for wild type, predicting a lower unloaded duty ratio of the motor. Overall, the contractility parameters studied fit with a loss of human β-cardiac myosin contractility as a result of the R403Q mutation. PMID:26601291

  6. Physiological Reduction in Left Ventricular Contractile Function in Healthy Postpartum Women: Potential Overlap with Peripartum Cardiomyopathy

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Sitara G.; Melikian, Narbeh; Mushemi-Blake, Sitali; Dennes, William; Jouhra, Fadi; Monaghan, Mark; Shah, Ajay M.

    2016-01-01

    Aims Peripartum cardiomyopathy is a potentially life-threatening cause of heart failure, commoner in Afro-Caribbean than Caucasian women. Its diagnosis can be challenging due to physiological changes in cardiac function that also occur in healthy women during the early postpartum period. This study aimed to (i) establish the overlap between normal cardiac physiology in the immediate postpartum period and pathological changes in peripartum cardiomyopathy ii) identify any ethnicity-specific changes in cardiac function and cardiac biomarkers in healthy postpartum women. Methods and Results We conducted a cross-sectional study of 58 healthy postpartum women within 48 hours of delivery and 18 matched non-pregnant controls. Participants underwent cardiac assessment by echocardiography and strain analysis, including 3D echocardiography in 40 postpartum women. Results were compared with 12 retrospectively studied peripartum cardiomyopathy patients. Healthy postpartum women had significantly higher left ventricular volumes and mass, and lower ejection fraction and global longitudinal strain than non-pregnant controls. These parameters were significantly more impaired in peripartum cardiomyopathy patients but with overlapping ranges of values. Healthy postpartum women had higher levels of adrenomedullin, placental growth factor (PlGF) and soluble fms-like tyrosine kinase-1 (sFlt1) compared to controls. The postpartum state, adrenomedullin, sFlt1 and the sFlt1:PlGF ratio were independent predictors of LV remodelling and function in healthy postpartum women. Conclusion Healthy postpartum women demonstrate several echocardiographic indicators of left ventricular remodelling and reduced function, which are associated with altered levels of angiogenic and cardiac biomarkers. PMID:26859567

  7. Differential responsiveness to contractile agents of isolated smooth muscle cells from human colons as a function of age and inflammation.

    PubMed

    Boyer, J C; Guitton, C; Pignodel, C; Cuq, P; Moussu, P; Pouderoux, P; Christen, M O; Balmes, J L; Bali, J P

    1997-11-01

    To study the involvement of age and inflammation in motor colonic activity in man, contractile responses to CCK, carbachol, and KCl of isolated colonic smooth muscle cells (SMC) from normal and inflamed human colons were evaluated; the incidence of sex and smoking on contraction was also analyzed. Contractile responses to the three agonists were significantly lower in tissues with a low degree of inflammation than in tissues with high level of inflammation or normal tissues. This reduction in cell responsiveness appears to be nonspecific and nonreceptor mediated. A positive correlation of the contractile responses to the three stimulants with the age of patients was observed. In contrast, no association was found between sex, smoking, and cell contraction. In conclusion, contractions of SMC due to CCK, carbachol, and KCl were significantly modified during life; inflammation of the colon led to a loss of SMC responsiveness.

  8. α,β-Unsaturated aldehyde crotonaldehyde triggers cardiomyocyte contractile dysfunction: role of TRPV1 and mitochondrial function.

    PubMed

    Pei, Zhaohui; Zhuang, Zhiqiang; Sang, Hanfei; Wu, Zhenbiao; Meng, Rongsen; He, Emily Y; Scott, Glenda I; Maris, Jackie R; Li, Ruiman; Ren, Jun

    2014-04-01

    Recent evidence has suggested that cigarette smoking is associated with an increased prevalence of heart diseases. Given that cigarette smoking triggers proinflammatory response via stimulation of the capsaicin-sensitive transient receptor potential cation channel TRPV1, this study was designed to evaluate the effect of an essential α,β-unsaturated aldehyde from cigarette smoke crotonaldehyde on myocardial function and the underlying mechanism with a focus on TRPV1 and mitochondria. Cardiomyocyte mechanical and intracellular Ca2+ properties were evaluated including peak shortening (PS), maximal velocity of shortening/relengthening (±dL/dt), time-to-PS (TPS), time-to-90% relengthening (TR90), fura-2 fluorescence intensity (FFI), intracellular Ca2+ decay and SERCA activity. Apoptosis and TRPV1 were evaluated using Western blot analysis. Production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and DNA damage were measured using the intracellular fluoroprobe 5-(6)-chloromethyl-2',7'-dichlorodihydrofluorescein diacetate and 8-hydroxy-2'-deoxyguanosine (8-OHdG), respectively. Our data revealed that crotonaldehyde interrupted cardiomyocyte contractile and intracellular Ca2+ property including depressed PS, ±dL/dt, ΔFFI and SERCA activity, as well as prolonged TR90 and intracellular Ca2+ decay. Crotonaldehyde exposure increased TRPV1 and NADPH oxidase levels, promoted apoptosis, mitochondrial injury (decreased aconitase activity, PGC-1α and UCP-2) as well as production of ROS and 8-OHdG. Interestingly, crotonaldehyde-induced cardiac defect was obliterated by the ROS scavenger glutathione and the TRPV1 inhibitor capsazepine. Capsazepine (not glutathione) ablated crotonaldehyde-induced mitochondrial damage. Capsazepine, glutathione and the NADPH inhibitor apocynin negated crotonaldehyde-induced ROS accumulation. Our data suggest a role of crotonaldehyde compromises cardiomyocyte mechanical function possibly through a TRPV1- and mitochondria-dependent oxidative stress mechanism.

  9. LKB1/Mo25/STRAD uniquely impacts sarcomeric contractile function and posttranslational modification.

    PubMed

    Behunin, Samantha M; Lopez-Pier, Marissa A; Birch, Camille L; McKee, Laurel A K; Danilo, Christiane; Khalpey, Zain; Konhilas, John P

    2015-03-24

    The myocardium undergoes extensive metabolic and energetic remodeling during the progression of cardiac disease. Central to remodeling are changes in the adenine nucleotide pool. Fluctuations in these pools can activate AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), the central regulator of cellular energetics. Binding of AMP to AMPK not only allosterically activates AMPK but also promotes phosphorylation of AMPK by an upstream kinase complex, LKB1/Mo25/STRAD (liver kinase B 1, mouse protein 25, STE-related adaptor protein). AMPK phosphorylation by the LKB1 complex results in a substantial increase in AMPK activity. Molecular targeting by the LKB1 complex depends on subcellular localization and transcriptional expression. Yet, little is known about the ability of the LKB1 complex to modulate targeting of AMPK after activation. Accordingly, we hypothesized that differing stoichiometric ratios of LKB1 activator complex to AMPK would uniquely impact myofilament function. Demembranated rat cardiac trabeculae were incubated with varying ratios of the LKB1 complex to AMPK or the LKB1 complex alone. After incubation, we measured the Ca(2+) sensitivity of tension, rate constant for tension redevelopment, maximum tension generation, length-dependent activation, cooperativity, and sarcomeric protein phosphorylation status. We found that the Ca(2+) sensitivity of tension and cross-bridge dynamics were dependent on the LKB1 complex/AMPK ratio. We also found that the LKB1 complex desensitizes and suppresses myofilament function independently of AMPK. A phospho-proteomic analysis of myofilament proteins revealed site-specific changes in cardiac Troponin I (cTnI) phosphorylation, as well as a unique distribution of cTnI phosphospecies that were dependent on the LKB1 complex/ AMPK ratio. Fibers treated with the LKB1 complex alone did not alter cTnI phosphorylation or phosphospecies distribution. However, LKB1 complex treatment independent of AMPK increased phosphorylation of myosin

  10. Contractile function and sarcolemmal permeability after acute low-load resistance exercise with blood flow restriction.

    PubMed

    Wernbom, Mathias; Paulsen, Gøran; Nilsen, Tormod S; Hisdal, Jonny; Raastad, Truls

    2012-06-01

    Conflicting findings have been reported regarding muscle damage with low-intensity resistance exercise with blood flow restriction (BFR) by pressure cuffs. This study investigated muscle function and muscle fibre morphology after a single bout of low-intensity resistance exercise with and without BFR. Twelve physically active subjects performed unilateral knee extensions at 30% of their one repetition maximum (1RM), with partial BFR on one leg and the other leg without occlusion. With the BFR leg, five sets were performed to concentric torque failure, and the free-flow leg repeated the exact same number of repetitions and sets. Biopsies were obtained from vastus lateralis before and 1, 24 and 48 h after exercise. Maximum isometric torque (MVC) and resting tension were measured before and after exercise and at 4, 24, 48, 72, 96 and 168 h post-exercise. The results demonstrated significant decrements in MVC (lasting ≥48 h) and delayed onset muscle soreness in both legs, and increased resting tension for the occluded leg both acutely and at 24 h post-exercise. The percentage of muscle fibres showing elevated intracellular staining of the plasma protein tetranectin, a marker for sarcolemmal permeability, was significantly increased from 9% before exercise to 27-38% at 1, 24 and 48 h post-exercise for the BFR leg. The changes in the free-flow leg were significant only at 24 h (19%). We conclude that an acute bout of low-load resistance exercise with BFR resulted in changes suggesting muscle damage, which may have implications both for safety aspects and for the training stimulus with BFR exercise.

  11. Effects of Gestational and Postnatal Exposure to Chronic Intermittent Hypoxia on Diaphragm Muscle Contractile Function in the Rat

    PubMed Central

    McDonald, Fiona B.; Dempsey, Eugene M.; O'Halloran, Ken D.

    2016-01-01

    Alterations to the supply of oxygen during early life presents a profound stressor to physiological systems with aberrant remodeling that is often long-lasting. Chronic intermittent hypoxia (CIH) is a feature of apnea of prematurity, chronic lung disease, and sleep apnea. CIH affects respiratory control but there is a dearth of information concerning the effects of CIH on respiratory muscles, including the diaphragm—the major pump muscle of breathing. We investigated the effects of exposure to gestational CIH (gCIH) and postnatal CIH (pCIH) on diaphragm muscle function in male and female rats. CIH consisted of exposure in environmental chambers to 90 s of hypoxia reaching 5% O2 at nadir, once every 5 min, 8 h a day. Exposure to gCIH started within 24 h of identification of a copulation plug and continued until day 20 of gestation; animals were studied on postnatal day 22 or 42. For pCIH, pups were born in normoxia and within 24 h of delivery were exposed with dams to CIH for 3 weeks; animals were studied on postnatal day 22 or 42. Sham groups were exposed to normoxia in parallel. Following gas exposures, diaphragm muscle contractile, and endurance properties were examined ex vivo. Neither gCIH nor pCIH exposure had effects on diaphragm muscle force-generating capacity or endurance in either sex. Similarly, early life exposure to CIH did not affect muscle tolerance of severe hypoxic stress determined ex vivo. The findings contrast with our recent observation of upper airway dilator muscle weakness following exposure to pCIH. Thus, the present study suggests a relative resilience to hypoxic stress in diaphragm muscle. Co-ordinated activity of thoracic pump and upper airway dilator muscles is required for optimal control of upper airway caliber. A mismatch in the force-generating capacity of the complementary muscle groups could have adverse consequences for the control of airway patency and respiratory homeostasis. PMID:27462274

  12. Skeletal muscle contractile function and neuromuscular performance in Zmpste24 -/- mice, a murine model of human progeria.

    PubMed

    Greising, Sarah M; Call, Jarrod A; Lund, Troy C; Blazar, Bruce R; Tolar, Jakub; Lowe, Dawn A

    2012-08-01

    Human progeroid syndromes and premature aging mouse models present as segmental, accelerated aging because some tissues and not others are affected. Skeletal muscle is detrimentally changed by normal aging but whether it is an affected tissue in progeria has not been resolved. We hypothesized that mice which mimic Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome would exhibit age-related alterations of skeletal muscle. Zmpste24 (-/-) and Zmpste24 (+/+) littermates were assessed for skeletal muscle functions, histo-morphological characteristics, and ankle joint mechanics. Twenty-four-hour active time, ambulation, grip strength, and whole body tension were evaluated as markers of neuromuscular performance, each of which was at least 33% lower in Zmpste24 (-/-) mice compared with littermates (p < 0.06). Contractile capacity of the posterior leg muscles were not affected in Zmpste24 (-/-) mice, but muscles of the anterior leg were 30-90% weaker than those of Zmpste24 (+/+) mice (p < 0.01). Leg muscles were 32-47% smaller in the Zmpste24 (-/-) mice and contained ~60% greater collagen relative to littermates (p < 0.01). Soleus and extensor digitorum longus muscles of Zmpste24 (-/-) mice had excessive myonuclei and altered fiber size distributions but, otherwise, appeared normal. Ankle range of motion was 70% lower and plantar- and dorsiflexion passive torques were nearly 3-fold greater in Zmpste24 (-/-) than Zmpste24 (+/+) mice (p ≤ 0.01). The combined factors of muscle atrophy, collagen accumulation, and perturbed joint mechanics likely contributed to poor neuromuscular performance and selective muscle weakness displayed by Zmpste24 (-/-)mice. In summary, these characteristics are similar to those of aged mice indicating accelerated aging of skeletal muscle in progeria.

  13. Frequency dependence of power and its implications for contractile function of muscle fibers from the digital flexors of horses

    PubMed Central

    Butcher, Michael T.; Bertram, John E.A.; Syme, Douglas A.; Hermanson, John W.; Chase, P. Bryant

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The digital flexors of horses must produce high force to support the body weight during running, and a need for these muscles to generate power is likely limited during locomotion over level ground. Measurements of power output from horse muscle fibers close to physiological temperatures, and when cyclic strain is imposed, will help to better understand the in vivo performance of the muscles as power absorbers and generators. Skinned fibers from the deep (DDF) and superficial (SDF) digital flexors, and the soleus (SOL) underwent sinusoidal oscillations in length over a range of frequencies (0.5–16 Hz) and strain amplitudes (0.01–0.06) under maximum activation (pCa 5) at 30°C. Results were analyzed using both workloop and Nyquist plot analyses to determine the ability of the fibers to absorb or generate power and the frequency dependence of those abilities. Power absorption was dominant at most cycling frequencies and strain amplitudes in fibers from all three muscles. However, small amounts of power were generated (0.002–0.05 Wkg−1) at 0.01 strain by all three muscles at relatively slow cycling frequencies: DDF (4–7 Hz), SDF (4–5 Hz) and SOL (0.5–1 Hz). Nyquist analysis, reflecting the influence of cross‐bridge kinetics on power generation, corroborated these results. The similar capacity for power generation by DDF and SDF versus lower for SOL, and the faster frequency at which this power was realized in DDF and SDF fibers, are largely explained by the fast myosin heavy chain isoform content in each muscle. Contractile function of DDF and SDF as power absorbers and generators, respectively, during locomotion may therefore be more dependent on their fiber architectural arrangement than on the physiological properties of their muscle fibers. PMID:25293602

  14. Effects of silver ions (Ag+) on contractile ring function and microtubule dynamics during first cleavage in Ilyanassa obsoleta

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Conrad, A. H.; Stephens, A. P.; Paulsen, A. Q.; Schwarting, S. S.; Conrad, G. W.; Spooner, B. S. (Principal Investigator)

    1994-01-01

    The terminal phase of cell division involves tight constriction of the cleavage furrow contractile ring, stabilization/elongation of the intercellular bridge, and final separation of the daughter cells. At first cleavage, the fertilized eggs of the mollusk, Ilyanassa obsoleta, form two contractile rings at right angles to each other in the same cytoplasm that constrict to tight necks and partition the egg into a trefoil shape. The cleavage furrow contractile ring (CF) normally constricts around many midbody microtubules (MTs) and results in cleavage; the polar lobe constriction contractile ring (PLC) normally constricts around very few MTs and subsequently relaxes without cleavage. In the presence of Ag+ ions, the PLC 1) begins MT-dependent rapid constriction sooner than controls, 2) encircles more MTs than control egg PLCs, 3) elongates much more than control PLCs, and 4) remains tightly constricted and effectively cleaves the polar lobe from the egg. If Ag(+)-incubated eggs are returned to normal seawater at trefoil, tubulin fluorescence disappears from the PLC neck and the neck relaxes. If nocodazole, a drug that depolymerizes MTs, is added to Ag(+)-incubated eggs during early PLC constriction, the PLC is not stabilized and eventually relaxes. However, if nocodazole is added to Ag(+)-incubated eggs at trefoil, tubulin fluorescence disappears from the PLC neck but the neck remains constricted. These results suggest that Ag+ accelerates and gradually stabilizes the PLC constriction by a mechanism that is initially MT-dependent, but that progressively becomes MT-independent.

  15. Asymmetric Expression of Connexins between luminal epithelial- and myoepithelial- cells is Essential for Contractile Function of the Mammary Gland

    PubMed Central

    Mroue, Rana; Inman, Jamie; Mott, Joni; Budunova, Irina; Bissell, Mina J.

    2016-01-01

    myoepithelial cells, highlighting the importance of cell type-specific expression of Cxs for optimal contractile function of the mammary myoepithelium. PMID:25500615

  16. Asymmetric expression of connexins between luminal epithelial- and myoepithelial- cells is essential for contractile function of the mammary gland.

    PubMed

    Mroue, Rana; Inman, Jamie; Mott, Joni; Budunova, Irina; Bissell, Mina J

    2015-03-01

    myoepithelial cells, highlighting the importance of cell type-specific expression of Cxs for optimal contractile function of the mammary myoepithelium.

  17. Continuous Flow Left Ventricular Assist Device Implant Significantly Improves Pulmonary Hypertension, Right Ventricular Contractility, and Tricuspid Valve Competence

    PubMed Central

    Atluri, Pavan; Fairman, Alexander S.; MacArthur, John W.; Goldstone, Andrew B.; Cohen, Jeffrey E.; Howard, Jessica L.; Zalewski, Christyna M.; Shudo, Yasuhiro; Woo, Y. Joseph

    2014-01-01

    Background Continuous flow left ventricular assist devices (CF LVAD) are being implanted with increasing frequency for end-stage heart failure. At the time of LVAD implant, a large proportion of patients have pulmonary hypertension, right ventricular (RV) dysfunction, and tricuspid regurgitation (TR). RV dysfunction and TR can exacerbate renal dysfunction, hepatic dysfunction, coagulopathy, edema, and even prohibit isolated LVAD implant. Repairing TR mandates increased cardiopulmonary bypass time and bicaval cannulation, which should be reserved for the time of orthotopic heart transplantation. We hypothesized that CF LVAD implant would improve pulmonary artery pressures, enhance RV function, and minimize TR, obviating need for surgical tricuspid repair. Methods One hundred fourteen continuous flow LVADs implanted from 2005 through 2011 at a single center, with medical management of functional TR, were retrospectively analyzed. Pulmonary artery pressures were measured immediately prior to and following LVAD implant. RV function and TR were graded according to standard echocardiographic criteria, prior to, immediately following, and long-term following LVAD. Results There was a significant improvement in post-VAD mean pulmonary arterial pressures (26.6 ± 4.9 vs. 30.2 ± 7.4 mmHg, p = 0.008) with equivalent loading pressures (CVP = 12.0 ± 4.0 vs. 12.1 ± 5.1 p = NS). RV function significantly improved, as noted by right ventricular stroke work index (7.04 ± 2.60 vs. 6.05 ± 2.54, p = 0.02). There was an immediate improvement in TR grade and RV function following LVAD implant, which was sustained long term. Conclusion Continuous flow LVAD implant improves pulmonary hypertension, RV function, and tricuspid regurgitation. TR may be managed nonoperatively during CF LVAD implant. PMID:24118109

  18. Selective TNF-α targeting with infliximab attenuates impaired oxygen metabolism and contractile function induced by an acute exposure to air particulate matter.

    PubMed

    Marchini, Timoteo; D'Annunzio, Verónica; Paz, Mariela L; Cáceres, Lourdes; Garcés, Mariana; Perez, Virginia; Tasat, Deborah; Vanasco, Virginia; Magnani, Natalia; Gonzalez Maglio, Daniel; Gelpi, Ricardo J; Alvarez, Silvia; Evelson, Pablo

    2015-11-15

    Inflammation plays a central role in the onset and progression of cardiovascular diseases associated with the exposure to air pollution particulate matter (PM). The aim of this work was to analyze the cardioprotective effect of selective TNF-α targeting with a blocking anti-TNF-α antibody (infliximab) in an in vivo mice model of acute exposure to residual oil fly ash (ROFA). Female Swiss mice received an intraperitoneal injection of infliximab (10 mg/kg body wt) or saline solution, and were intranasally instilled with a ROFA suspension (1 mg/kg body wt). Control animals were instilled with saline solution and handled in parallel. After 3 h, heart O2 consumption was assessed by high-resolution respirometry in left ventricle tissue cubes and isolated mitochondria, and ventricular contractile reserve and lusitropic reserve were evaluated according to the Langendorff technique. ROFA instillation induced a significant decrease in tissue O2 consumption and active mitochondrial respiration by 32 and 31%, respectively, compared with the control group. While ventricular contractile state and isovolumic relaxation were not altered in ROFA-exposed mice, impaired contractile reserve and lusitropic reserve were observed in this group. Infliximab pretreatment significantly attenuated the decrease in heart O2 consumption and prevented the decrease in ventricular contractile and lusitropic reserve in ROFA-exposed mice. Moreover, infliximab-pretreated ROFA-exposed mice showed conserved left ventricular developed pressure and cardiac O2 consumption in response to a β-adrenergic stimulus with isoproterenol. These results provides direct evidence linking systemic inflammation and altered cardiac function following an acute exposure to PM and contribute to the understanding of PM-associated cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.

  19. Effect of dietary polyunsaturated fatty acids on contractile function of hearts isolated from sedentary and trained rats.

    PubMed

    Demaison, L; Blet, J; Sergiel, J P; Gregoire, S; Argaud, D

    2000-01-01

    Moderate physical training induced a decrease in arterial blood pressure in fish oil-fed rats as compared to sunflower seed oil-fed rats. The purpose of this study was to determine if these changes were due to modifications of the left ventricular function of the heart. Forty rats were fed a semi-purified diet containing either 10% sunflower seed oil or 10% fish oil (EPAX 3000TG, Pronova). Each dietary group was assigned to two sub-groups, one being constituted by sedentary animals and the other by trained animals. Training was achieved by daily running for 60 minutes at moderate intensity for three weeks. At the end of the training period, the animals were sacrificed and their hearts were immediately perfused according to the working mode. The phospholipid fatty acid composition and parameters of the left ventricular function were determined. Feeding fish oil markedly reduced the proportion of n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA, 18:2 n-6, 20:4 n-6, 22:4 n-6 and 22:5 n-6) in cardiac phospholipids. The n-6 PUFA were replaced by n-3 PUFA (mainly docosahexaenoic acid). In sedentary animals, the fluid dynamic (aortic and coronary flow, cardiac output) was not modified by the diet. The heart rate was reduced (-10%) in n-3 PUFA-rich hearts. Physical training did not markedly alter the polyunsaturated fatty acid profile of cardiac phospholipids. Conversely, it reduced the heart rate, aortic flow and cardiac output (-11, -21 and -14%, respectively) at a similar extent in the two dietary groups. In a second set of experiments, the training period was repeated in animals fed a commercially available diet (A103, UAR) which simultaneously provided n-6 and n-3 fatty acids. In these dietary conditions, neither the aortic flow nor the heart rate was decreased by physical exercise. These results suggest that both n-6 and n-3 PUFA in the diet are necessary to ensure a good cardiac adaptation to moderate physical training. Furthermore, the fish oil-induced decrease in arterial

  20. Muscle disuse alters skeletal muscle contractile function at the molecular and cellular levels in older adult humans in a sex-specific manner

    PubMed Central

    Callahan, Damien M; Miller, Mark S; Sweeny, Andrew P; Tourville, Timothy W; Slauterbeck, James R; Savage, Patrick D; Maugan, David W; Ades, Philip A; Beynnon, Bruce D; Toth, Michael J

    2014-01-01

    Physical inactivity that accompanies ageing and disease may hasten disability by reducing skeletal muscle contractility. To characterize skeletal muscle functional adaptations to muscle disuse, we compared contractile performance at the molecular, cellular and whole-muscle levels in healthy active older men and women (n = 15) and inactive older men and women with advanced-stage, symptomatic knee osteoarthritis (OA) (n = 16). OA patients showed reduced (P < 0.01) knee extensor function. At the cellular level, single muscle fibre force production was reduced in OA patients in myosin heavy chain (MHC) I and IIA fibres (both P < 0.05) and differences in IIA fibres persisted after adjustments for fibre cross-sectional area (P < 0.05). Although no group differences in contractile velocity or power output were found for any fibre type, sex was found to modify the effect of OA, with a reduction in MHC IIA power output and a trend towards reduced shortening velocity in women, but increases in both variables in men (P < 0.05 and P = 0.07, respectively). At the molecular level, these adaptations in MHC IIA fibre function were explained by sex-specific differences (P ≤ 0.05) in myosin–actin cross-bridge kinetics. Additionally, cross-bridge kinetics were slowed in MHC I fibres in OA patients (P < 0.01), attributable entirely to reductions in women with knee OA (P < 0.05), a phenotype that could be reproduced in vitro by chemical modification of protein thiol residues. Our results identify molecular and cellular functional adaptations in skeletal muscle that may contribute to reduced physical function with knee OA-associated muscle disuse, with sex-specific differences that may explain a greater disposition towards disability in women. PMID:25038243

  1. Action of ouabain and an amino-cardenolide on Na/sup +/-pump function and contractility of isolated canine heart cells

    SciTech Connect

    Porterfield, L.M.; Songu-Mize, E.; Chryssanthis, T.; Caldwell, R.W.

    1986-03-05

    Viable, rod-shaped, Ca/sup + +/-tolerant cells were isolated from the cardiac ventricle of adult mongrel dogs, a digitalis-sensitive species. These cells do not contract spontaneously but contractions were driven by electrical field stimulation. Changes in contractile amplitude were assessed by computer-assisted analysis of recorded phase contrast images. Addition of a polar aminocardenolide (AC), ASI-222, produced a dose-related increase in contractility with a concentration producing a 50% maximal response (RC/sub 50/) of 4 x 10/sup -8/M. For ouabain (OB) the RC/sub 50/ was 7 x 10/sup -7/M. Cellular Na/sup +/-pump (NaP) function was determined as digitalis-sensitive /sup 86/Rb/sup +/-uptake. Addition of AC and OB to these cells produced a dose-related decrease in /sup 86/Rb/sup +/-uptake; concentrations which produced a 50% inhibition (IC/sub 50/) of NaP function were of 6 x 10/sup -8/M and 1.2 x 10/sup -6/M for AC and OB, respectively. Their data indicates that in isolated dog heart cells AC is both a more potent inotropic agent and an inhibitor of NaP function by 15-20 fold than OB. The RC/sub 50/ and IC/sub 50/ for these processes correlate for each glycoside.

  2. Effects of beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate (HMB) on the expression of ubiquitin ligases, protein synthesis pathways and contractile function in extensor digitorum longus (EDL) of fed and fasting rats.

    PubMed

    Gerlinger-Romero, Frederico; Guimarães-Ferreira, Lucas; Yonamine, Caio Yogi; Salgueiro, Rafael Barrera; Nunes, Maria Tereza

    2017-01-12

    Beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate (HMB), a leucine metabolite, enhances the gain of skeletal muscle mass by increasing protein synthesis or attenuating protein degradation or both. The aims of this study were to investigate the effect of HMB on molecular factors controlling skeletal muscle protein synthesis and degradation, as well as muscle contractile function, in fed and fasted conditions. Wistar rats were supplied daily with HMB (320 mg/kg body weight diluted in NaCl-0.9%) or vehicle only (control) by gavage for 28 days. After this period, some of the animals were subjected to a 24-h fasting, while others remained in the fed condition. The EDL muscle was then removed, weighed and used to evaluate the genes and proteins involved in protein synthesis (AKT/4E-BP1/S6) and degradation (Fbxo32 and Trim63). A sub-set of rats were used to measure in vivo muscle contractile function. HMB supplementation increased AKT phosphorylation during fasting (three-fold). In the fed condition, no differences were detected in atrogenes expression between control and HMB supplemented group; however, HMB supplementation did attenuate the fasting-induced increase in their expression levels. Fasting animals receiving HMB showed improved sustained tetanic contraction times (one-fold) and an increased muscle to tibia length ratio (1.3-fold), without any cross-sectional area changes. These results suggest that HMB supplementation under fasting conditions increases AKT phosphorylation and attenuates the increased of atrogenes expression, followed by a functional improvement and gain of skeletal muscle weight, suggesting that HMB protects skeletal muscle against the deleterious effects of fasting.

  3. Dual Role for Microtubules in Regulating Cortical Contractility during Cytokinesis

    PubMed Central

    Murthy, Kausalya; Wadsworth, Patricia

    2008-01-01

    Microtubules stimulate contractile ring formation in the equatorial cortex and simultaneously suppress contractility in the polar cortex; how they accomplish these differing activities is incompletely understood. We measured the behavior of GFP-actin in mammalian cells treated with nocodazole under conditions that either completely eliminate microtubules or selectively disassemble astral microtubules. Selective disassembly of astral microtubules resulted functional contractile rings that were wider than controls and had altered dynamic activity, as measured by FRAP. Complete microtubule disassembly or selective loss of astral microtubules resulted in wave-like contractile behavior of actin in the non-equatorial cortex and mislocalization of myosin II and Rho. FRAP experiments showed that both contractility and actin polymerization contributed to the wave-like behavior of actin. Wave-like, contractile behavior in anaphase cells was Rho-dependent. We conclude that dynamic astral microtubules function to suppress Rho activation in the nonequatorial cortex, limiting the contractile activity of the polar cortex. PMID:18559890

  4. Influence of angiotensin converting enzyme inhibition on pump function and cardiac contractility in patients with chronic congestive heart failure.

    PubMed Central

    Baur, L H; Schipperheyn, J J; Baan, J; van der Laarse, A; Buis, B; van der Wall, E E; Manger Cats, V; van Dijk, A D; Blokland, J A; Frölich, M

    1991-01-01

    Eleven patients with coronary artery disease and chronic heart failure were studied before and three months after the angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor enalapril was added to their frusemide medication. The following were measured: left ventricular pressure and volume with transient occlusion of the inferior vena cava, radionuclide angiography, and hormone concentrations in plasma. As in other reported studies, the clinical condition of the patients improved and their exercise tolerance increased moderately. Addition of enalapril reduced end diastolic and systolic pressure, reduced ventricular volume, and concomitantly increased the ejection fraction. The end systolic pressure-volume relation shifted to the left as it did in a similar animal study. In the animal study unloading by a vasodilator did not induce a leftward shift, so it can be inferred that in the present study unloading combined with a decrease in the angiotensin concentration was instrumental in remodelling the heart. Though unloading was expected to have a beneficial effect on the oxygen supply/demand ratio of the heart, the patients still showed the same drop in the ejection fraction during exercise as they did before treatment with enalapril, and early diastolic filling did not improve. Normally, regression of cardiac dilatation is only found if pump function improves; the present study showed that unloading in combination with angiotensin converting enzyme inhibition reshapes the ventricle without improving intrinsic pump function. PMID:2015121

  5. Passive heating following the prematch warm-up in soccer: examining the time-course of changes in muscle temperature and contractile function.

    PubMed

    Marshall, Paul W M; Cross, Rebecca; Lovell, Ric

    2015-12-01

    This study examined changes in muscle temperature, electrically evoked muscle contractile properties, and voluntary power before and after a soccer specific active warm-up and subsequent rest period. Ten amateur soccer players performed two experimental sessions that involved performance of a modified FIFA 11+ soccer specific warm-up, followed by a 12.5-min rest period where participants were required to wear either normal clothing or a passive electrical heating garment was applied to the upper thigh muscles. Assessments around the warm-up and cool-down included measures of maximal torque, rate of torque development, muscle temperature (Tm), and electrically evoked measures of quadriceps contractile function. Tm was increased after the warm-up by 3.2 ± 0.7°C (P < 0.001). Voluntary and evoked rates of torque development increased after the warm-up between 20% and 30% (P < 0.05), despite declines in both maximal voluntary torque and voluntary activation (P < 0.05). Application of a passive heating garment in the cool-down period after the warm-up did not effect variables measured. While Tm was reduced by 1.4 ± 0.4°C after the rest period (P < 0.001), this value was still higher than pre warm-up levels. Voluntary and evoked rate of torque development remained elevated from pre warm-up levels at the end of the cool-down (P < 0.05). The soccer specific warm-up elevated muscle temperature by 3.2°C and was associated with concomitant increases of between 20% and 30% in voluntary rate of torque development, which seems explained by elevations in rate-dependent measures of intrinsic muscle contractile function. Application of a passive heating garment did not attenuate declines in muscle temperature during a 12.5-min rest period.

  6. A key function of non-planar membranes and their associated microtubular ribbons in contractile vacuole membrane dynamics is revealed by electrophysiologically controlled fixation of Paramecium.

    PubMed

    Tominaga, T; Naitoh, Y; Allen, R D

    1999-11-01

    The contractile vacuole complex of the fresh water protozoan Paramecium multimicronucleatum exhibits periodic exocytotic activity. This keeps cytosolic osmolarity at a constant value. The contractile vacuole, the central exocytotic vesicle of the complex, becomes disconnected from its surrounding radial arms and rounds before its fluid content is expelled. We previously proposed a hypothesis that the rounding of the contractile vacuole corresponds to an increase in its membrane tension and that a periodic increase in membrane tension governs the exocytotic cycle. We also proposed a hypothesis that transformation of excess planar membrane of the contractile vacuole into 40 nm diameter tubules, that remain continuous with the contractile vacuole membrane, is a primary cause for the tension development in the planar membrane. In order to investigate tension development further, we have examined electron microscopically the contractile vacuole membrane at the rounding phase. To do this, we developed a computer-aided system to fix the cell precisely at the time that the contractile vacuole exhibited rounding. In this system a decrease in the electrical potential across the contractile vacuole membrane that accompanied the vacuole's rounding was monitored through a fine-tipped microelectrode inserted directly into the in vivo contractile vacuole. A decrease in membrane potential was used to generate an electric signal that activated an injector for injecting a fixative through a microcapillary against the cell at the precise time of rounding. Subsequent electron micrographs of the contractile vacuole membrane clearly demonstrated that numerous approximately 40 nm membrane-bound tubules formed in the vicinity of the vacuole's microtubule ribbons when the vacuole showed rounding. This finding suggested that membrane tubulation was the cause for topographical isolation of excess membrane from the planar membrane during the periodic rounding of the contractile vacuole. This

  7. Role of contraction duration in inducing fast-to-slow contractile and metabolic protein and functional changes in engineered muscle.

    PubMed

    Khodabukus, Alastair; Baehr, Leslie M; Bodine, Sue C; Baar, Keith

    2015-10-01

    The role of factors such as frequency, contraction duration and active time in the adaptation to chronic low-frequency electrical stimulation (CLFS) is widely disputed. In this study we explore the ability of contraction duration (0.6, 6, 60, and 600 sec) to induce a fast-to-slow shift in engineered muscle while using a stimulation frequency of 10 Hz and keeping active time constant at 60%. We found that all contraction durations induced similar slowing of time-to-peak tension. Despite similar increases in total myosin heavy (MHC) levels with stimulation, increasing contraction duration resulted in progressive decreases in total fast myosin. With contraction durations of 60 and 600 sec, MHC IIx levels decreased and MHC IIa levels increased. All contraction durations resulted in fast-to-slow shifts in TnT and TnC but increased both fast and slow TnI levels. Half-relaxation slowed to a greater extent with contraction durations of 60 and 600 sec despite similar changes in the calcium sequestering proteins calsequestrin and parvalbumin and the calcium uptake protein SERCA. All CLFS groups resulted in greater fatigue resistance than control. Similar increases in GLUT4, mitochondrial enzymes (SDH and ATPsynthase), the fatty acid transporter CPT-1, and the metabolic regulators PGC-1α and MEF2 were found with all contraction durations. However, the mitochondrial enzymes cytochrome C and citrate synthase were increased to greater levels with contraction durations of 60 and 600 sec. These results demonstrate that contraction duration plays a pivotal role in dictating the level of CLFS-induced contractile and metabolic adaptations in tissue-engineered skeletal muscle.

  8. Maternal Nutrient Restriction Alters Ca2+ Handling Properties and Contractile Function of Isolated Left Ventricle Bundles in Male But Not Female Juvenile Rats

    PubMed Central

    Murphy, Robyn M.; Morrison, Janna L.

    2015-01-01

    Intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR), defined as a birth weight below the 10th centile, may be caused by maternal undernutrition, with evidence that IUGR offspring have an increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in adulthood. Calcium ions (Ca2+) are an integral messenger for several steps associated with excitation-contraction coupling (ECC); the cascade of events from the initiation of an action potential at the surface membrane, to contraction of the cardiomyocyte. Any changes in Ca2+ storage and release from the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR), or sensitivity of the contractile apparatus to Ca2+ may underlie the mechanism linking IUGR to an increased risk of CVD. This study aimed to explore the effects of maternal nutrient restriction on cardiac function, including Ca2+ handling by the SR and force development by the contractile apparatus. Juvenile Long Evans hooded rats born to Control (C) and nutrient restricted (NR) dams were anaesthetized for collection of the heart at 10–12 weeks of age. Left ventricular bundles from male NR offspring displayed increased maximum Ca2+-activated force, and decreased protein content of troponin I (cTnI) compared to C males. Furthermore, male NR offspring showed a reduction in rate of rise of the caffeine-induced Ca2+ force response and a decrease in the protein content of ryanodine receptor (RYR2). These physiological and biochemical findings observed in males were not evident in female offspring. These findings illustrate a sex-specific effect of maternal NR on cardiac development, and also highlight a possible mechanism for the development of hypertension and hypertrophy in male NR offspring. PMID:26406887

  9. Lengthening-contractions in isolated myocardium impact force development and worsen cardiac contractile function in the mdx mouse model of muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Xu, Ying; Delfín, Dawn A; Rafael-Fortney, Jill A; Janssen, Paul M L

    2011-02-01

    Lengthening-contractions exert eccentric stress on myofibers in normal myocardium. In congestive heart failure caused by a variety of diseases, the impact of lengthening-contractions of myocardium likely becomes more prevalent and severe. The present study introduces a method to investigate the role of stretching imposed by repetitive lengthening-contractions in myocardium under near-physiological conditions. By exerting various stretch-release ramps while the muscle is contracting, consecutive lengthening-contractions and their potential detrimental effect on cardiac function can be studied. We tested our model and hypothesis in age-matched (young and adult) mdx and wild-type mouse right ventricular trabeculae. These linear and ultrathin muscles possess all major cardiac cell types, and their contractile behavior very closely mimics that of the whole myocardium. In the first group of experiments, 10 lengthening-contractions at various magnitudes of stretch were performed in trabeculae from 10-wk-old mdx and wild-type mice. In the second group, 100 lengthening-contractions at various magnitudes were conducted in trabeculae from 10- and 20-wk-old mice. The peak isometric active developed tension (F(dev), in mN/mm(2)) and kinetic parameters time to peak tension (TTP, in ms) and time from peak tension to half-relaxation (RT50, in ms) were measured. Our results indicate lengthening-contractions significantly impact contractile behavior, and that dystrophin-deficient myocardium in mdx mice is significantly more susceptible to these damaging lengthening-contractions. The results indicate that lengthening-contractions in intact myocardium can be used in vitro to study this emerging contributor to cardiomyopathy.

  10. [NO-DEPENDENT MECHANISM OF THE CARDIOPROTECTIVE ACTION OF PHENIBUT ON STRESS-INDUCED VIOLATION OF CONTRACTILE FUNCTION OF THE HEART].

    PubMed

    Tyurenkov, I N; Perfilova, V N; Sadikova, N V; Prokofiev, I I

    2015-01-01

    A stressor action for 24 h reduces both ino- and chronotropic reserves of animal heart as evidenced by a decrease in rate growth increments of contraction and relaxation of the myocardium, left ventricular pressure (LVP), heart rate, and the maximum intensity of functioning (MIF) as compared to intact animals during testing for adrenoreactivity and maximum isometric load caused by clamping of the ascending part of the aortic arch. Blockade of NO-synthase leads to a high percentage of animal death during the stressor action, anesthesia, opening of the chest, and functional tests and causes marked reduction in the growth rates of contraction (+dP/dt max) and relaxation (-dP/dt max) speed, LVP, heart rate, and MIF--on the average about 2 times (p < 0.05) under load testing conditions as compared to a control group of stressed animals. Phenibut limits stress-induced violations of the myocardium contractility, as indicated by a higher growth of performance in stress tests--on the average about 1.8 times (p < 0.05) in comparison to the control group of animals. The cardioprotective effect of phenibut is less pronounced when it is introduced on the background of the blockade of NO-ergic system. Under these conditions, there are cases of animal death, predominantly during the stressor action. The results obtained suggest that, for ensuring cardioprotective action of phenibut under conditions of stress-induced myocardial damage, it is necessary to provide for participation of nitric oxide system.

  11. Abnormal calcium homeostasis in heart failure with preserved ejection fraction is related to both reduced contractile function and incomplete relaxation: an electromechanically detailed biophysical modeling study

    PubMed Central

    Adeniran, Ismail; MacIver, David H.; Hancox, Jules C.; Zhang, Henggui

    2015-01-01

    Heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) accounts for about 50% of heart failure cases. It has features of incomplete relaxation and increased stiffness of the left ventricle. Studies from clinical electrophysiology and animal experiments have found that HFpEF is associated with impaired calcium homeostasis, ion channel remodeling and concentric left ventricle hypertrophy (LVH). However, it is still unclear how the abnormal calcium homeostasis, ion channel and structural remodeling affect the electro-mechanical dynamics of the ventricles. In this study we have developed multiscale models of the human left ventricle from single cells to the 3D organ, which take into consideration HFpEF-induced changes in calcium handling, ion channel remodeling and concentric LVH. Our simulation results suggest that at the cellular level, HFpEF reduces the systolic calcium level resulting in a reduced systolic contractile force, but elevates the diastolic calcium level resulting in an abnormal residual diastolic force. In our simulations, these abnormal electro-mechanical features of the ventricular cells became more pronounced with the increase of the heart rate. However, at the 3D organ level, the ejection fraction of the left ventricle was maintained due to the concentric LVH. The simulation results of this study mirror clinically observed features of HFpEF and provide new insights toward the understanding of the cellular bases of impaired cardiac electromechanical functions in heart failure. PMID:25852567

  12. KATP channel gain-of-function leads to increased myocardial L-type Ca2+ current and contractility in Cantu syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Levin, Mark D.; Singh, Gautam K.; Zhang, Hai Xia; Uchida, Keita; Kozel, Beth A.; Stein, Phyllis K.; Kovacs, Atilla; Westenbroek, Ruth E.; Catterall, William A.; Grange, Dorothy Katherine; Nichols, Colin G.

    2016-01-01

    Cantu syndrome (CS) is caused by gain-of-function (GOF) mutations in genes encoding pore-forming (Kir6.1, KCNJ8) and accessory (SUR2, ABCC9) KATP channel subunits. We show that patients with CS, as well as mice with constitutive (cGOF) or tamoxifen-induced (icGOF) cardiac-specific Kir6.1 GOF subunit expression, have enlarged hearts, with increased ejection fraction and increased contractility. Whole-cell voltage-clamp recordings from cGOF or icGOF ventricular myocytes (VM) show increased basal L-type Ca2+ current (LTCC), comparable to that seen in WT VM treated with isoproterenol. Mice with vascular-specific expression (vGOF) show left ventricular dilation as well as less-markedly increased LTCC. Increased LTCC in KATP GOF models is paralleled by changes in phosphorylation of the pore-forming α1 subunit of the cardiac voltage-gated calcium channel Cav1.2 at Ser1928, suggesting enhanced protein kinase activity as a potential link between increased KATP current and CS cardiac pathophysiology. PMID:27247394

  13. Microscale Electrode Implantation during Nerve Repair: Effects on Nerve Morphology, Electromyography, and Recovery of Muscle Contractile Function

    PubMed Central

    Urbanchek, Melanie G; Wei, Benjamin; Egeland, Brent M; Abidian, Mohammad R; Kipke, Daryl R; Cederna, Paul S

    2011-01-01

    Background Our goal is to develop a peripheral nerve electrode with long-term stability and fidelity for use in nerve-machine interfaces. Microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) use silicon probes that contain multi-channel actuators, sensors, and electronics. We tested the null hypothesis that implantation of MEMS probes do not have a detrimental effect on peripheral nerve function or regeneration. Methods A rat hindlimb, peroneal nerve model was utilized in all experimental groups: a) intact nerve (Control, n= 10); b) nerve division and repair (Repair, n= 9); and c) Nerve division, insertion of MEMS probe, and repair (Repair + Probe, n=9). Nerve morphology, nerve to muscle compound action potential (CMAP) studies, walking tracks, and extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscle function tests were evaluated following an 80 day recovery. Results Repair and Repair + Probe showed no differences in axon count, axon size, percent non-neural area, CMAP amplitude, latency, muscle mass, muscle force, or walking track scores. Though there was some local fibrosis around each MEMS probe, this did not lead to measurable detrimental effects in any anatomic or functional outcome measurements. Conclusions The lack of a significant difference between Repair and Repair + Probe groups in histology, CMAP, walking tracks, and muscle force suggests that MEMS electrodes are compatible with regenerating axons and show promise for establishing chemical and electrical interfaces with peripheral nerves. PMID:21921739

  14. Relationship between membrane Cl− conductance and contractile endurance in isolated rat muscles

    PubMed Central

    de Paoli, Frank Vincenzo; Broch-Lips, Martin; Pedersen, Thomas Holm; Nielsen, Ole Bækgaard

    2013-01-01

    Resting skeletal muscle fibres have a large membrane Cl− conductance (GCl) that dampens their excitability. Recently, however, muscle activity was shown to induce PKC-mediated reduction in GCl in rat muscles of 40–90%. To examine the physiological significance of this PKC-mediated GCl reduction for the function of muscles, this study explored effects of GCl reductions on contractile endurance in isolated rat muscles. Contractile endurance was assessed from the ability of muscle to maintain force during prolonged stimulation under conditions when GCl was manipulated by: (i) inhibition of PKC, (ii) reduction of solution Cl− or (iii) inhibition of ClC-1 Cl− channels using 9-anthracene-carboxylic acid (9-AC). Experiments showed that contractile endurance was optimally preserved by reductions in GCl similar to what occurs in active muscle. Contrastingly, further GCl reductions compromised the endurance. The experiments thus show a biphasic relationship between GCl and contractile endurance in which partial GCl reduction improves endurance while further GCl reduction compromises endurance. Intracellular recordings of trains of action potentials suggest that this biphasic dependency of contractile endurance on GCl reflects that lowering GCl enhances muscle excitability but low GCl also increases the depolarisation of muscle fibres during excitation and reduces their ability to re-accumulate K+ lost during excitation. If GCl becomes very low, the latter actions dominate causing reduced endurance. It is concluded that the PKC-mediated ClC-1 channel inhibition in active muscle reduces GCl to a level that optimises contractile endurance during intense exercise. PMID:23045345

  15. Origins of the vagal drive controlling left ventricular contractility

    PubMed Central

    Machhada, Asif; Marina, Nephtali; Korsak, Alla; Stuckey, Daniel J.; Lythgoe, Mark F.

    2016-01-01

    Key points The strength, functional significance and origins of parasympathetic innervation of the left ventricle remain controversial.This study tested the hypothesis that parasympathetic control of left ventricular contractility is provided by vagal preganglionic neurones of the dorsal motor nucleus (DVMN).Under β‐adrenoceptor blockade combined with spinal cord (C1) transection (to remove sympathetic influences), systemic administration of atropine increased left ventricular contractility in rats anaesthetized with urethane, confirming the existence of a tonic inhibitory muscarinic influence on cardiac inotropy.Increased left ventricular contractility in anaesthetized rats was observed when DVMN neurones were silenced.Functional neuroanatomical mapping revealed that vagal preganglionic neurones that have an impact on left ventricular contractility are located in the caudal region of the left DVMN.These neurones provide functionally significant parasympathetic control of left ventricular inotropy. Abstract The strength, functional significance and origins of direct parasympathetic innervation of the left ventricle (LV) remain controversial. In the present study we used an anaesthetized rat model to first confirm the presence of tonic inhibitory vagal influence on LV inotropy. Using genetic neuronal targeting and functional neuroanatomical mapping we tested the hypothesis that parasympathetic control of LV contractility is provided by vagal preganglionic neurones located in the dorsal motor nucleus (DVMN). It was found that under systemic β‐adrenoceptor blockade (atenolol) combined with spinal cord (C1) transection (to remove sympathetic influences), intravenous administration of atropine increases LV contractility in rats anaesthetized with urethane, but not in animals anaesthetized with pentobarbital. Increased LV contractility in rats anaesthetized with urethane was also observed when DVMN neurones targeted bilaterally to express an inhibitory Drosophila

  16. Optimum periodicity of repeated contractile actions applied in mass transport

    PubMed Central

    Ahn, Sungsook; Lee, Sang Joon

    2015-01-01

    Dynamically repeated periodic patterns are abundant in natural and artificial systems, such as tides, heart beats, stock prices, and the like. The characteristic repeatability and periodicity are expected to be optimized in effective system-specific functions. In this study, such optimum periodicity is experimentally evaluated in terms of effective mass transport using one-valve and multi-valve systems working in contractile fluid flows. A set of nanoscale gating functions is utilized, operating in nanocomposite networks through which permeates selectively pass under characteristic contractile actions. Optimized contractile periodicity exists for effective energy impartment to flow in a one-valve system. In the sequential contractile actions for a multi-valve system, synchronization with the fluid flow is critical for effective mass transport. This study provides fundamental understanding on the various repeated periodic patterns and dynamic repeatability occurring in nature and mechanical systems, which are useful for broad applications. PMID:25622949

  17. Spontaneous actin dynamics in contractile rings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kruse, Karsten; Wollrab, Viktoria; Thiagarajan, Raghavan; Wald, Anne; Riveline, Daniel

    Networks of polymerizing actin filaments are known to be capable to self-organize into a variety of structures. For example, spontaneous actin polymerization waves have been observed in living cells in a number of circumstances, notably, in crawling neutrophils and slime molds. During later stages of cell division, they can also spontaneously form a contractile ring that will eventually cleave the cell into two daughter cells. We present a framework for describing networks of polymerizing actin filaments, where assembly is regulated by various proteins. It can also include the effects of molecular motors. We show that the molecular processes driven by these proteins can generate various structures that have been observed in contractile rings of fission yeast and mammalian cells. We discuss a possible functional role of each of these patterns. The work was supported by Agence Nationale de la Recherche, France, (ANR-10-LABX-0030-INRT) and by Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft through SFB1027.

  18. Actomyosin contractility rotates the cell nucleus.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Abhishek; Maitra, Ananyo; Sumit, Madhuresh; Ramaswamy, Sriram; Shivashankar, G V

    2014-01-21

    The cell nucleus functions amidst active cytoskeletal filaments, but its response to their contractile stresses is largely unexplored. We study the dynamics of the nuclei of single fibroblasts, with cell migration suppressed by plating onto micro-fabricated patterns. We find the nucleus undergoes noisy but coherent rotational motion. We account for this observation through a hydrodynamic approach, treating the nucleus as a highly viscous inclusion residing in a less viscous fluid of orientable filaments endowed with active stresses. Lowering actin contractility selectively by introducing blebbistatin at low concentrations drastically reduced the speed and coherence of the angular motion of the nucleus. Time-lapse imaging of actin revealed a correlated hydrodynamic flow around the nucleus, with profile and magnitude consistent with the results of our theoretical approach. Coherent intracellular flows and consequent nuclear rotation thus appear to be an intrinsic property of cells.

  19. Novel Functions of Ect2 in Polar Lamellipodia Formation and Polarity Maintenance during “Contractile Ring-Independent” Cytokinesis in Adherent Cells

    PubMed Central

    Kanada, Masamitsu; Nagasaki, Akira

    2008-01-01

    Some mammalian cells are able to divide via both the classic contractile ring-dependent method (cytokinesis A) and a contractile ring-independent, adhesion-dependent method (cytokinesis B). Cytokinesis A is triggered by RhoA, which, in HeLa cells, is activated by the guanine nucleotide-exchange factor Ect2 localized at the central spindle and equatorial cortex. Here, we show that in HT1080 cells undergoing cytokinesis A, Ect2 does not localize in the equatorial cortex, though RhoA accumulates there. Moreover, Ect2 depletion resulted in only modest multinucleation of HT1080 cells, enabling us to establish cell lines in which Ect2 was constitutively depleted. Thus, RhoA is activated via an Ect2-independent pathway during cytokinesis A in HT1080 cells. During cytokinesis B, Ect2-depleted cells showed narrower accumulation of RhoA at the equatorial cortex, accompanied by compromised pole-to-equator polarity, formation of ectopic lamellipodia in regions where RhoA normally would be distributed, and delayed formation of polar lamellipodia. Furthermore, C3 exoenzyme inhibited equatorial RhoA activation and polar lamellipodia formation. Conversely, expression of dominant active Ect2 in interphase HT1080 cells enhanced RhoA activity and suppressed lamellipodia formation. These results suggest that equatorial Ect2 locally suppresses lamellipodia formation via RhoA activation, which indirectly contributes to restricting lamellipodia formation to polar regions during cytokinesis B. PMID:17942602

  20. Chinese Herbal Medicine Treatment Improves the Overall Survival Rate of Individuals with Hypertension among Type 2 Diabetes Patients and Modulates In Vitro Smooth Muscle Cell Contractility

    PubMed Central

    Yeh, Yi-Chun; Cheng, Chi-Fung; Shiao, Yi-Tzone; Wang, Chang-Bi; Chien, Wen-Kuei; Chen, Jin-Hua; Liu, Xiang; Tsang, Hsinyi; Lin, Ting-Hsu; Liao, Chiu-Chu; Huang, Shao-Mei; Li, Ju-Pi; Lin, Cheng-Wen; Pang, Hao-Yu; Lin, Jaung-Geng; Lan, Yu-Ching; Liu, Yu-Huei; Chen, Shih-Yin; Tsai, Fuu-Jen; Liang, Wen-Miin

    2015-01-01

    Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is a chronic, multifactorial, and metabolic disorder accounting for 90% diabetes cases worldwide. Among them, almost half of T2D have hypertension, which is responsible for cardiovascular disease, morbidity, and mortality in these patients. The Chinese herbal medicine (CHM) prescription patterns of hypertension individuals among T2D patients have yet to be characterized. This study, therefore, aimed to determine their prescription patterns and evaluate the CHM effect. A cohort of one million randomly sampled cases from the National Health Insurance Research Database (NHIRD) was used to investigate the overall survival rate of CHM users, and prescription patterns. After matching CHM and non-CHM users for age, gender and date of diagnosis of hypertension, 980 subjects for each group were selected. The CHM users were characterized with slightly longer duration time from diabetes to hypertension, and more cases for hyperlipidaemia. The cumulative survival probabilities were higher in CHM users than in non-CHM users. Among these top 12 herbs, Liu-Wei-Di-Huang-Wan, Jia-Wei-Xiao-Yao-San, Dan-Shen, and Ge-Gen were the most common herbs and inhibited in vitro smooth muscle cell contractility. Our study also provides a CHM comprehensive list that may be useful in future investigation of the safety and efficacy for individuals with hypertension among type 2 diabetes patients. PMID:26699542

  1. Improving functional value of meat products.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Wangang; Xiao, Shan; Samaraweera, Himali; Lee, Eun Joo; Ahn, Dong U

    2010-09-01

    In recent years, much attention has been paid to develop meat and meat products with physiological functions to promote health conditions and prevent the risk of diseases. This review focuses on strategies to improve the functional value of meat and meat products. Value improvement can be realized by adding functional compounds including conjugated linoneleic acid, vitamin E, n3 fatty acids and selenium in animal diets to improve animal production, carcass composition and fresh meat quality. In addition, functional ingredients such as vegetable proteins, dietary fibers, herbs and spices, and lactic acid bacteria can be directly incorporated into meat products during processing to improve their functional value for consumers. Functional compounds, especially peptides, can also be generated from meat and meat products during processing such as fermentation, curing and aging, and enzymatic hydrolysis. This review further discusses the current status, consumer acceptance, and market for functional foods from the global viewpoints. Future prospects for functional meat and meat products are also discussed.

  2. Role of microtubules in the contractile dysfunction of hypertrophied myocardium

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zile, M. R.; Koide, M.; Sato, H.; Ishiguro, Y.; Conrad, C. H.; Buckley, J. M.; Morgan, J. P.; Cooper, G. 4th

    1999-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: We sought to determine whether the ameliorative effects of microtubule depolymerization on cellular contractile dysfunction in pressure overload cardiac hypertrophy apply at the tissue level. BACKGROUND: A selective and persistent increase in microtubule density causes decreased contractile function of cardiocytes from cats with hypertrophy produced by chronic right ventricular (RV) pressure overloading. Microtubule depolymerization by colchicine normalizes contractility in these isolated cardiocytes. However, whether these changes in cellular function might contribute to changes in function at the more highly integrated and complex cardiac tissue level was unknown. METHODS: Accordingly, RV papillary muscles were isolated from 25 cats with RV pressure overload hypertrophy induced by pulmonary artery banding (PAB) for 4 weeks and 25 control cats. Contractile state was measured using physiologically sequenced contractions before and 90 min after treatment with 10(-5) mol/liter colchicine. RESULTS: The PAB significantly increased RV systolic pressure and the RV weight/body weight ratio in PAB; it significantly decreased developed tension from 59+/-3 mN/mm2 in control to 25+/-4 mN/mm2 in PAB, shortening extent from 0.21+/-0.01 muscle lengths (ML) in control to 0.12+/-0.01 ML in PAB, and shortening rate from 1.12+/-0.07 ML/s in control to 0.55+/-0.03 ML/s in PAB. Indirect immunofluorescence confocal microscopy showed that PAB muscles had a selective increase in microtubule density and that colchicine caused complete microtubule depolymerization in both control and PAB papillary muscles. Microtubule depolymerization normalized myocardial contractility in papillary muscles of PAB cats but did not alter contractility in control muscles. CONCLUSIONS: Excess microtubule density, therefore, is equally important to both cellular and to myocardial contractile dysfunction caused by chronic, severe pressure-overload cardiac hypertrophy.

  3. The contractile ring coordinates curvature-dependent septum assembly during fission yeast cytokinesis

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Zhou; Munteanu, Emilia Laura; He, Jun; Ursell, Tristan; Bathe, Mark; Huang, Kerwyn Casey; Chang, Fred

    2015-01-01

    The functions of the actin-myosin–based contractile ring in cytokinesis remain to be elucidated. Recent findings show that in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, cleavage furrow ingression is driven by polymerization of cell wall fibers outside the plasma membrane, not by the contractile ring. Here we show that one function of the ring is to spatially coordinate septum cell wall assembly. We develop an improved method for live-cell imaging of the division apparatus by orienting the rod-shaped cells vertically using microfabricated wells. We observe that the septum hole and ring are circular and centered in wild-type cells and that in the absence of a functional ring, the septum continues to ingress but in a disorganized and asymmetric manner. By manipulating the cleavage furrow into different shapes, we show that the ring promotes local septum growth in a curvature-dependent manner, allowing even a misshapen septum to grow into a more regular shape. This curvature-dependent growth suggests a model in which contractile forces of the ring shape the septum cell wall by stimulating the cell wall machinery in a mechanosensitive manner. Mechanical regulation of the cell wall assembly may have general relevance to the morphogenesis of walled cells. PMID:25355954

  4. Enhanced acyl-CoA dehydrogenase activity is associated with improved mitochondrial and contractile function in heart failure

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Heart failure is associated with decreased myocardial fatty acid oxidation capacity and has been likened to energy starvation. Increased fatty acid availability results in an induction of genes promoting fatty acid oxidation. The aim of the present study was to investigate possible mechanisms by whi...

  5. Effect of exercise training and myocardial infarction on force development and contractile kinetics in isolated canine myocardium.

    PubMed

    Canan, Benjamin D; Haizlip, Kaylan M; Xu, Ying; Monasky, Michelle M; Hiranandani, Nitisha; Milani-Nejad, Nima; Varian, Kenneth D; Slabaugh, Jessica L; Schultz, Eric J; Fedorov, Vadim V; Billman, George E; Janssen, Paul M L

    2016-04-15

    It is well known that moderate exercise training elicits a small increase in ventricular mass (i.e., a physiological hypertrophy) that has many beneficial effects on overall cardiac health. It is also well known that, when a myocardial infarction damages part of the heart, the remaining myocardium remodels to compensate for the loss of viable functioning myocardium. The effects of exercise training, myocardial infarction (MI), and their interaction on the contractile performance of the myocardium itself remain largely to be determined. The present study investigated the contractile properties and kinetics of right ventricular myocardium isolated from sedentary and exercise trained (10-12 wk progressively increasing treadmill running, begun 4 wk after MI induction) dogs with and without a left ventricular myocardial infarction. Exercise training increased force development, whereas MI decreased force development that was not improved by exercise training. Contractile kinetics were significantly slower in the trained dogs, whereas this impact of training was less or no longer present after MI. Length-dependent activation, both evaluated on contractile force and kinetics, was similar in all four groups. The control exercise-trained group exhibited a more positive force-frequency relationship compared with the sedentary control group while both sedentary and trained post-MI dogs had a more negative relationship. Last, the impact of the β-adrenergic receptor agonist isoproterenol resulted in a similar increase in force and acceleration of contractile kinetics in all groups. Thus, exercise training increased developed force but slowed contractile kinetics in control (noninfarcted animals), actions that were attenuated or completely absent in post-MI dogs.

  6. Troponin I Mutations R146G and R21C Alter Cardiac Troponin Function, Contractile Properties, and Modulation by Protein Kinase A (PKA)-mediated Phosphorylation*

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Yuanhua; Rao, Vijay; Tu, An-yue; Lindert, Steffen; Wang, Dan; Oxenford, Lucas; McCulloch, Andrew D.; McCammon, J. Andrew; Regnier, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Two hypertrophic cardiomyopathy-associated cardiac troponin I (cTnI) mutations, R146G and R21C, are located in different regions of cTnI, the inhibitory peptide and the cardiac-specific N terminus. We recently reported that these regions may interact when Ser-23/Ser-24 are phosphorylated, weakening the interaction of cTnI with cardiac TnC. Little is known about how these mutations influence the affinity of cardiac TnC for cTnI (KC-I) or contractile kinetics during β-adrenergic stimulation. Here, we tested how cTnIR146G or cTnIR21C influences contractile activation and relaxation and their response to protein kinase A (PKA). Both mutations significantly increased Ca2+ binding affinity to cTn (KCa) and KC-I. PKA phosphorylation resulted in a similar reduction of KCa for all complexes, but KC-I was reduced only with cTnIWT. cTnIWT, cTnIR146G, and cTnIR21C were complexed into cardiac troponin and exchanged into rat ventricular myofibrils, and contraction/relaxation kinetics were measured ± PKA phosphorylation. Maximal tension (Tmax) was maintained for cTnIR146G- and cTnIR21C-exchanged myofibrils, and Ca2+ sensitivity of tension (pCa50) was increased. PKA phosphorylation decreased pCa50 for cTnIWT-exchanged myofibrils but not for either mutation. PKA phosphorylation accelerated the early slow phase relaxation for cTnIWT myofibrils, especially at Ca2+ levels that the heart operates in vivo. Importantly, this effect was blunted for cTnIR146G- and cTnIR21C-exchanged myofibrils. Molecular dynamics simulations suggest both mutations inhibit formation of intra-subunit contacts between the N terminus and the inhibitory peptide of cTnI that is normally seen with WT-cTn upon PKA phosphorylation. Together, our results suggest that cTnIR146G and cTnIR21C blunt PKA modulation of activation and relaxation kinetics by prohibiting cardiac-specific N-terminal interaction with the cTnI inhibitory peptide. PMID:26391394

  7. THE CONTRACTILE PROCESS IN THE CILIATE, STENTOR COERULEUS

    PubMed Central

    Huang, B.; Pitelka, D. R.

    1973-01-01

    The structural basis for the function of microtubules and filaments in cell body contractility in the ciliate Stentor coeruleus was investigated. Cells in the extended state were obtained for ultrastructural analysis by treatment before fixation with a solution containing 10 mM EGTA, 50–80 mM Tris, 3 mM MgSO4, 7.5 mM NH4Cl, 10 mM phosphate buffer (pH 7.1). The response of Stentor to changes in the divalent cation concentrations in this solution suggests that Ca+2 and Mg+2 are physiologically important in the regulation of ciliate contractility. The generation of motive force for changes in cell length in Stentor resides in two distinct longitudinal cortical fiber systems, the km fibers and myonemes. Cyclic changes in cell length are associated with (a) the relative sliding of parallel, overlapping microtubule ribbons in the km fibers, and (b) a distinct alteration in the structure of the contractile filaments constituting the myonemes. The microtubule and filament systems are distinguished functionally as antagonistic contractile elements. The development of motive force for cell extension is accomplished by active microtubule-to-microtubule sliding generated by specific intertubule bridges. Evidence is presented which suggests that active shortening of contractile filaments, reflected in a reversible structural transformation of dense 4-nm filaments to tubular 10–12-nm filaments, provides the basis for rapid cell contraction. PMID:4633444

  8. Peptide Mimetics of Apolipoproteins Improve HDL Function

    PubMed Central

    Navab, Mohamad; Anantharamaiah, G. M.; Reddy, Srinivasa T.; Van Lenten, Brian J.; Buga, Georgette M.; Fogelman, Alan M.

    2007-01-01

    Over the past decade evidence has accumulated that suggests that the anti-inflammatory properties of HDL may be at least as important as the levels of HDL-cholesterol. The recent failure of the torcetrapib clinical trails has highlighted the potential differences between HDL-cholesterol levels and HDL function. Agents to improve HDL function including HDL anti-inflammatory properties provide a new therapeutic strategy for ameliorating atherosclerosis and other chronic inflammatory conditions related to dyslipidemia. Seeking guidance from the structure of the apolipoproteins of the plasma lipoproteins has allowed the creation of a series of polypeptides that have interesting functionality with therapeutic implications. In animal models of atherosclerosis, peptide mimetics of apolipoproteins have been shown to improve the anti-inflammatory properties of HDL, significantly reduce lesions and improve vascular inflammation and function without necessarily altering HDL-cholesterol levels. Some of these are now entering the clinical arena as interventions in pharmacologic and pharmacodynamic studies. PMID:18449337

  9. Myocardial function improved by electromagnetic field induction of stress protein hsp70.

    PubMed

    George, Isaac; Geddis, Matthew S; Lill, Zachary; Lin, Hana; Gomez, Teodoro; Blank, Martin; Oz, Mehmet C; Goodman, Reba

    2008-09-01

    Studies on myocardial function have shown that hsp70, stimulated by an increase in temperature, leads to improved survival following ischemia-reperfusion (I-R). Low frequency electromagnetic fields (EMFs) also induce the stress protein hsp70, but without elevating temperature. We have examined the hemodynamic changes in concert with EMF pre-conditioning and the induction of hsp70 to determine whether improved myocardial function occurs following I-R injury in Sprague-Dawley rats. Animals were exposed to EMF (60 Hz, 8 microT) for 30 min prior to I-R. Ischemia was then induced by ligation of left anterior descending coronary artery (LAD) for 30 min, followed by 30 min of reperfusion. Blood and heart tissue levels for hsp70 were determined by Western blot and RNA transcription by rtPCR. Significant upregulation of the HSP70 gene and increased hsp70 levels were measured in response to EMF pre-exposures. Invasive hemodynamics, as measured using a volume conductance catheter, demonstrated significant recovery of systolic contractile function after 30 min of reperfusion following EMF exposure. Additionally, isovolemic relaxation, a measure of ventricular diastolic function, was markedly improved in EMF-treated animals. In conclusion, non-invasive EMF induction of hsp70 preserved myocardial function and has the potential to improve tolerance to ischemic injury.

  10. Improvement of early postburn cardiac function by use of Panax notoginseng and immediate total eschar excision in one operation.

    PubMed

    Huang, Y S; Yang, Z C; Yan, B G; Hu, X C; Li, A N; Crowther, R S

    1999-02-01

    Cardiac dysfunction development in the early stage postburn has been an important problem in burn treatment. However, no effective therapies are available for use in clinical practice. In this study, we sought to determine whether early total eschar excision (EEE) in one operation and the traditional Chinese herb Panax notoginseng (PNS) would be helpful in improving early postburn cardiac function. 160 Wistar rats were randomly divided into burn (burn group, n = 50), burn treated with EEE (EEE group, n = 50), burn treated with PNS (PNS group, n = 50) groups and normal controls (n = 10). All rats except the normal control were given a 30% TBSA full skin thickness burn and resuscitated with Ringer's lactate. EEE was performed immediately after the burn group received the first intraperitoneal injection of Ringer's lactate. The wound was covered with homoskin from normal rats. In the PNS group, two doses of PNS (200 mg/kg for each dose) were given intraperitoneally immediately and 4 h postburn. Cardiac contractile function and cardiac troponin T (TnT) were determined at 1, 3, 6, 12 and 24 h postburn. Results showed that cardiac contractile parameters including AOSP, AODP, LVSP and +dp/dt(max) all declined and were still significantly lower than the control values at 24 h postburn. Cardiac TnT was elevated markedly and reached a level 25 times higher than control at 12 h postburn. In EEE and PNS groups, the reduction of cardiac contractile function was limited as compared with that in the burn group. Levels of TnT in both EEE and PNS groups were significantly lower than in the burn group 6 h postburn later. The findings of this study demonstrated that both EEE and PNS were effective in improving early postburn cardiac function.

  11. Fast-to-Slow Transition of Skeletal Muscle Contractile Function and Corresponding Changes in Myosin Heavy and Light Chain Formation in the R6/2 Mouse Model of Huntington’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    Hering, Tanja; Braubach, Peter; Landwehrmeyer, G. Bernhard; Lindenberg, Katrin S.

    2016-01-01

    Huntington´s disease (HD) is a hereditary neurodegenerative disease resulting from an expanded polyglutamine sequence (poly-Q) in the protein huntingtin (HTT). Various studies report atrophy and metabolic pathology of skeletal muscle in HD and suggest as part of the process a fast-to-slow fiber type transition that may be caused by the pathological changes in central motor control or/and by mutant HTT in the muscle tissue itself. To investigate muscle pathology in HD, we used R6/2 mice, a common animal model for a rapidly progressing variant of the disease expressing exon 1 of the mutant human gene. We investigated alterations in the extensor digitorum longus (EDL), a typical fast-twitch muscle, and the soleus (SOL), a slow-twitch muscle. We focussed on mechanographic measurements of excised muscles using single and repetitive electrical stimulation and on the expression of the various myosin isoforms (heavy and light chains) using dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) of whole muscle and single fiber preparations. In EDL of R6/2, the functional tests showed a left shift of the force-frequency relation and decrease in specific force. Moreover, the estimated relative contribution of the fastest myosin isoform MyHC IIb decreased, whereas the contribution of the slower MyHC IIx isoform increased. An additional change occurred in the alkali MyLC forms showing a decrease in 3f and an increase in 1f level. In SOL, a shift from fast MyHC IIa to the slow isoform I was detectable in male R6/2 mice only, and there was no evidence of isoform interconversion in the MyLC pattern. These alterations point to a partial remodeling of the contractile apparatus of R6/2 mice towards a slower contractile phenotype, predominantly in fast glycolytic fibers. PMID:27820862

  12. Contractile properties of thin (actin) filament-reconstituted muscle fibers.

    PubMed

    Ishiwata, S; Funatsu, T; Fujita, H

    1998-01-01

    Selective removal and reconstitution of the components of muscle fibers (fibrils) is a useful means of examining the molecular mechanism underlying the formation of the contractile apparatus. In addition, this approach is powerful for examining the structure-function relationship of a specific component of the contractile system. In previous studies, we have achieved the partial structural and functional reconstitution of thin filaments in the skeletal contractile apparatus and full reconstitution in the cardiac contractile apparatus. First, all thin filaments other than short fragments at the Z line were removed by treatment with plasma gelsolin, an actin filament-severing protein. Under these conditions, no active tension could be generated. By incorporating exogenous actin into these thin filament-free fibers, actin filaments were reconstituted by polymerization on the short actin fragments remaining at the Z line, and active tension, which was insensitive to Ca2+, was restored. The active tension after the reconstitution of thin filaments reached as high as 30% of the original level in skeletal muscle, while it reached 140% in cardiac muscle. The augmentation of tension in cardiac muscle is mainly attributable to the elongation of reconstituted filaments, longer than the average length of thin filaments in an intact muscle. These results indicate that a muscle contractile apparatus with a high order structure and function can be constructed by the self-assembly of constituent proteins. Recently, we applied this reconstitution system to the study of the mechanism of spontaneous oscillatory contraction (SPOC) in thin (actin) filament-reconstituted cardiac muscle fibers. As a result, we found that SPOC occurs even in regulatory protein-free actin filament-reconstituted fibers (Fujita & Ishiwata, manuscript submitted), although the SPOC conditions were slightly different from the standard SPOC conditions. This result strongly suggests that spontaneous oscillation

  13. Combined calcium fluorescence recording with ionic currents in contractile cells.

    PubMed

    Rainbow, Richard D

    2013-01-01

    Measurement of calcium (Ca(2+)) fluorescence in conjunction with ionic currents is of particular importance in contractile cells, such as cardiac ventricular myocytes and vascular smooth muscle. The interplay between membrane potential and intracellular calcium ([Ca(2+)](i)) is fundamental to the regulation of contractile function and cell signalling. Here the loading of cells either with an esterified fluorescence indicator prior to patch clamp recording, or dye loading via the patch pipette with "free" indicator, is described to allow simultaneous measurement of fluorescence and electrical signals.

  14. Considerations for contractile electroactive materials and actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rasmussen, Lenore; Schramm, David; Rasmussen, Paul; Mullally, Kevin; Meixler, Lewis D.; Pearlman, Daniel; Kirk, Alice

    2011-04-01

    Ras Labs produces contractile electroactive polymer (EAP) based materials and actuators that bend, swell, ripple, and contract (new development) with low electric input. In addition, Ras Labs produces EAP materials that quickly contract and expand, repeatedly, by reversing the polarity of the electric input, which can be cycled. This phenomenon was explored using molecular modeling, followed by experimentation. Applied voltage step functions were also investigated. High voltage steps followed by low voltage steps produced a larger contraction followed by a smaller contraction. Actuator control by simply adjusting the electric input is extremely useful for biomimetic applications. Muscles are able to partially contract. If muscles could only completely contract, nobody could hold an egg, for example, without breaking it. A combination of high and low voltage step functions could produce gross motor function and fine manipulation within the same actuator unit. Plasma treated electrodes with various geometries were investigated as a means of providing for more durable actuation.

  15. Considerations for Contractile Electroactive Materials and Actuators

    SciTech Connect

    Lenore Rasmussen, David Schramm, Paul Rasmussen, Kevin Mullaly, Ras Labs, LLC, Intelligent Materials for Prosthetics & Automation, Lewis D. Meixler, Daniel Pearlman and Alice Kirk

    2011-05-23

    Ras Labs produces contractile electroactive polymer (EAP) based materials and actuators that bend, swell, ripple, and contract (new development) with low electric input. In addition, Ras Labs produces EAP materials that quickly contract and expand, repeatedly, by reversing the polarity of the electric input, which can be cycled. This phenomenon was explored using molecular modeling, followed by experimentation. Applied voltage step functions were also investigated. High voltage steps followed by low voltage steps produced a larger contraction followed by a smaller contraction. Actuator control by simply adjusting the electric input is extremely useful for biomimetic applications. Muscles are able to partially contract. If muscles could only completely contract, nobody could hold an egg, for example, without breaking it. A combination of high and low voltage step functions could produce gross motor function and fine manipulation within the same actuator unit. Plasma treated electrodes with various geometries were investigated as a means of providing for more durable actuation.

  16. Improved Approximate Profile Function of Hedgehog Skyrmion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji, Yong-Lin; Jia, Duo-Jie; Xi, Guo-Zhu; Liu, Feng

    The profile function for Skyrme model is investigated in Hedgehog ansatz. An improved analytical solution to the Hedgehog Skyrmion is obtained by using tentative function method. It is found that ensuing calculated static energy is smaller than that in Ref. 13, and the isoscalar electric mean square radius √ {< r2>}I=0 and the isoscalar magnetic mean square radius √ {< r2>}M,I=0 well agree with experiment results.

  17. Protective effects of anisodamine on cigarette smoke extract-induced airway smooth muscle cell proliferation and tracheal contractility

    SciTech Connect

    Xu, Guang-Ni; Yang, Kai; Xu, Zu-Peng; Zhu, Liang; Hou, Li-Na; Qi, Hong; Chen, Hong-Zhuan Cui, Yong-Yao

    2012-07-01

    Anisodamine, an antagonist of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs), has been used therapeutically to improve smooth muscle function, including microvascular, intestinal and airway spasms. Our previous studies have revealed that airway hyper-reactivity could be prevented by anisodamine. However, whether anisodamine prevents smoking-induced airway smooth muscle (ASM) cell proliferation remained unclear. In this study, a primary culture of rat ASM cells was used to evaluate an ASM phenotype through the ability of the cells to proliferate and express contractile proteins in response to cigarette smoke extract (CSE) and intervention of anisodamine. Our results showed that CSE resulted in an increase in cyclin D1 expression concomitant with the G0/G1-to-S phase transition, and high expression of M2 and M3. Functional studies showed that tracheal hyper-contractility accompanied contractile marker α-SMA high-expression. These changes, which occur only after CSE stimulation, were prevented and reversed by anisodamine, and CSE-induced cyclin D1 expression was significantly inhibited by anisodamine and the specific inhibitor U0126, BAY11-7082 and LY294002. Thus, we concluded that the protective and reversal effects and mechanism of anisodamine on CSE-induced events might involve, at least partially, the ERK, Akt and NF-κB signaling pathways associated with cyclin D1 via mAChRs. Our study validated that anisodamine intervention on ASM cells may contribute to anti-remodeling properties other than bronchodilation. -- Highlights: ► CSE induces tracheal cell proliferation, hyper-contractility and α-SMA expression. ► Anisodamine reverses CSE-induced tracheal hyper-contractility and cell proliferation. ► ERK, PI3K, and NF-κB pathways and cyclin D1 contribute to the reversal effect.

  18. Computational analysis of contractility in engineered heart tissue.

    PubMed

    Mathews, Grant; Sondergaard, Claus; Jeffreys, Angela; Childs, William; Le, Bao Linh; Sahota, Amrit; Najibi, Skender; Nolta, Jan; Si, Ming-Sing

    2012-05-01

    Engineered heart tissue (EHT) is a potential therapy for heart failure and the basis of functional in vitro assays of novel cardiovascular treatments. Self-organizing EHT can be generated in fiber form, which makes the assessment of contractile function convenient with a force transducer. Contractile function is a key parameter of EHT performance. Analysis of EHT force data is often performed manually; however, this approach is time consuming, incomplete and subjective. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to develop a computer algorithm to efficiently and objectively analyze EHT force data. This algorithm incorporates data filtering, individual contraction detection and validation, inter/intracontractile analysis and intersample analysis. We found the algorithm to be accurate in contraction detection, validation and magnitude measurement as compared to human operators. The algorithm was efficient in processing hundreds of data acquisitions and was able to determine force-length curves, force-frequency relationships and compare various contractile parameters such as peak systolic force generation. We conclude that this computer algorithm is a key adjunct to the objective and efficient assessment of EHT contractile function.

  19. Protective effect of melatonin on Ca2+ homeostasis and contractility in acute cholecystitis.

    PubMed

    Gomez-Pinilla, Pedro J; Camello, Pedro J; Pozo, María J

    2008-04-01

    Impaired Ca2+ homeostasis and smooth muscle contractility co-exist in acute cholecystitis (AC) leading to gallbladder dysfunction. There is no pharmacological treatment for this pathological condition. Our aim was to evaluate the effects of melatonin treatment on Ca2+ signaling pathways and contractility altered by cholecystitis. [Ca2+]i was determined by epifluorescence microscopy in fura-2 loaded isolated gallbladder smooth muscle cells, and isometric tension was recorded from gallbladder muscle strips. Malondialdehyde (MDA) and reduced glutathione (GSH) contents were determined by spectrophotometry and cycloxygenase-2 (COX-2) expression was quantified by western blot. Melatonin was tested in two experimental groups, one of which underwent common bile duct ligation for 2 days and another that was later de-ligated for 2 days. Inflammation-induced impairment of Ca2+ responses to cholecystokinin and caffeine were recovered by melatonin treatment (30 mg/kg). This treatment also ameliorated the detrimental effects of AC on Ca2+ influx through both L-type and capacitative Ca2+ channels, and it was effective in preserving the pharmacological phenotype of these channels. Despite its effects on Ca2+ homeostasis, melatonin did not improve contractility. After de-ligation, Ca2+ influx and contractility were still impaired, but both were recovered by melatonin. These effects of melatonin were associated to a reduction of MDA levels, an increase in GSH content and a decrease in COX-2 expression. These findings indicate that melatonin restores Ca2+ homeostasis during AC and resolves inflammation. In addition, this indoleamine helps in the subsequent recovery of functionality.

  20. Tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion and pulmonary arterial systolic pressure relationship in heart failure: an index of right ventricular contractile function and prognosis.

    PubMed

    Guazzi, M; Bandera, F; Pelissero, G; Castelvecchio, S; Menicanti, L; Ghio, S; Temporelli, P L; Arena, R

    2013-11-01

    Echo-derived pulmonary arterial systolic pressure (PASP) and right ventricular (RV) tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion (TAPSE; from the end of diastole to end-systole) are of basic relevance in the clinical follow-up of heart failure (HF) patients, carrying two- to threefold increase in cardiac risk when increased and reduced, respectively. We hypothesized that the relationship between TAPSE (longitudinal RV fiber shortening) and PASP (force generated by the RV) provides an index of in vivo RV length-force relationship, with their ratio better disclosing prognosis. Two hundred ninety-three HF patients with reduced (HFrEF, n = 247) or with preserved left ventricular (LV) ejection fraction (HFpEF, n = 46) underwent echo-Doppler studies and N-terminal pro-brain-type natriuretic peptide assessment and were tracked for adverse events. The median follow-up duration was 20.8 mo. TAPSE vs. PASP relationship showed a downward regression line shift in nonsurvivors who were more frequently presenting with higher PASP and lower TAPSE. HFrEF and HFpEF patients exhibited a similar distribution along the regression line. Given the TAPSE, PASP, and TAPSE-to-PASP ratio (TAPSE/PASP) collinearity, separate Cox regression and Kaplan-Meier analyses were performed: one with TAPSE and PASP as individual measures, and the other combining them in ratio form. Hazard ratios for variables retained in the multivariate regression were as follows: TAPSE/PASP functional class improves prognostic resolution. The TAPSE vs. PASP relationship as a possible index of the length-force relationship may be a step forward for a more efficient RV function evaluation and

  1. Does bariatric surgery improve adipose tissue function?

    PubMed Central

    Frikke-Schmidt, H.; O’Rourke, R. W.; Lumeng, C. N.; Sandoval, D. A.; Seeley, R. J.

    2017-01-01

    Summary Bariatric surgery is currently the most effective treatment for obesity. Not only do these types of surgeries produce significant weight loss but also they improve insulin sensitivity and whole body metabolic function. The aim of this review is to explore how altered physiology of adipose tissue may contribute to the potent metabolic effects of some of these procedures. This includes specific effects on various fat depots, the function of individual adipocytes and the interaction between adipose tissue and other key metabolic tissues. Besides a dramatic loss of fat mass, bariatric surgery shifts the distribution of fat from visceral to the subcutaneous compartment favoring metabolic improvement. The sensitivity towards lipolysis controlled by insulin and catecholamines is improved, adipokine secretion is altered and local adipose inflammation as well as systemic inflammatory markers decreases. Some of these changes have been shown to be weight loss independent, and novel hypothesis for these effects includes include changes in bile acid metabolism, gut microbiota and central regulation of metabolism. In conclusion bariatric surgery is capable of improving aspects of adipose tissue function and do so in some cases in ways that are not entirely explained by the potent effect of surgery. PMID:27272117

  2. Recovery of the Frank-Starling mechanism by coenzyme Q10 in patients with load-induced contractility depression.

    PubMed

    Oda, T

    1993-01-01

    Load-induced contractility depression, in which supernormal left ventricular ejection fraction and contractility at rest decrease by added afterload, is most often found in children with mitral valve prolapse who have symptoms. Patients have high ventricular end-diastolic pressure at rest, which is further increased by afterload challenge. The Frank-Starling mechanism may be maximally mobilized with high preload even at rest to compensate for the intrinsically depressed inotropic state. Therefore, preload reserve may be easily exhausted due to afterload addition. We aimed to determine left ventricular end-diastolic fiber length, stroke work, and contractility before and during handgrip by echocardiograms to obtain evidence for the Frank-Starling mechanism in patients and controls, including patients treated with coenzyme Q10. The subjects were divided into four groups, each consisting of 30 children aged 6-16 years: group 1, normals; group 2, patients; group 3, the same patients as in group 2 after coenzyme Q10 therapy; and group 4, patients with asymptomatic mitral valve prolapse. Baseline values and percentage increases in systolic blood pressure, heart rate, and left ventricular wall stress showed no differences among the groups. Only in group 2 were the percentage increase in ejection fraction, fiber shortening velocity, contractility, and end-diastolic dimension strongly negative, despite supernormal baseline levels. In other groups, these were significantly positive, without intergroup differences. We conclude that in the heart with load-induced contractility depression, the Frank-Starling mechanism deviates from normal. The normal Frank-Starling mechanism was recovered due to coenzyme Q10, which may improve disturbed bioenergetic function at the molecular level.

  3. A Small Molecule Inhibitor of Sarcomere Contractility Acutely Relieves Left Ventricular Outflow Tract Obstruction in Feline Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

    PubMed Central

    Stern, Joshua A.; Markova, Svetlana; Ueda, Yu; Kim, Jae B.; Pascoe, Peter J.; Evanchik, Marc J.; Green, Eric M.; Harris, Samantha P.

    2016-01-01

    Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is an inherited disease of the heart muscle characterized by otherwise unexplained thickening of the left ventricle. Left ventricular outflow tract (LVOT) obstruction is present in approximately two-thirds of patients and substantially increases the risk of disease complications. Invasive treatment with septal myectomy or alcohol septal ablation can improve symptoms and functional status, but currently available drugs for reducing obstruction have pleiotropic effects and variable therapeutic responses. New medical treatments with more targeted pharmacology are needed, but the lack of preclinical animal models for HCM with LVOT obstruction has limited their development. HCM is a common cause of heart failure in cats, and a subset exhibit systolic anterior motion of the mitral valve leading to LVOT obstruction. MYK-461 is a recently-described, mechanistically novel small molecule that acts at the sarcomere to specifically inhibit contractility that has been proposed as a treatment for HCM. Here, we use MYK-461 to test whether direct reduction in contractility is sufficient to relieve LVOT obstruction in feline HCM. We evaluated mixed-breed cats in a research colony derived from a Maine Coon/mixed-breed founder with naturally-occurring HCM. By echocardiography, we identified five cats that developed systolic anterior motion of the mitral valve and LVOT obstruction both at rest and under anesthesia when provoked with an adrenergic agonist. An IV MYK-461 infusion and echocardiography protocol was developed to serially assess contractility and LVOT gradient at multiple MYK-461 concentrations. Treatment with MYK-461 reduced contractility, eliminated systolic anterior motion of the mitral valve and relieved LVOT pressure gradients in an exposure-dependent manner. Our findings provide proof of principle that acute reduction in contractility with MYK-461 is sufficient to relieve LVOT obstruction. Further, these studies suggest that feline

  4. A Small Molecule Inhibitor of Sarcomere Contractility Acutely Relieves Left Ventricular Outflow Tract Obstruction in Feline Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy.

    PubMed

    Stern, Joshua A; Markova, Svetlana; Ueda, Yu; Kim, Jae B; Pascoe, Peter J; Evanchik, Marc J; Green, Eric M; Harris, Samantha P

    2016-01-01

    Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is an inherited disease of the heart muscle characterized by otherwise unexplained thickening of the left ventricle. Left ventricular outflow tract (LVOT) obstruction is present in approximately two-thirds of patients and substantially increases the risk of disease complications. Invasive treatment with septal myectomy or alcohol septal ablation can improve symptoms and functional status, but currently available drugs for reducing obstruction have pleiotropic effects and variable therapeutic responses. New medical treatments with more targeted pharmacology are needed, but the lack of preclinical animal models for HCM with LVOT obstruction has limited their development. HCM is a common cause of heart failure in cats, and a subset exhibit systolic anterior motion of the mitral valve leading to LVOT obstruction. MYK-461 is a recently-described, mechanistically novel small molecule that acts at the sarcomere to specifically inhibit contractility that has been proposed as a treatment for HCM. Here, we use MYK-461 to test whether direct reduction in contractility is sufficient to relieve LVOT obstruction in feline HCM. We evaluated mixed-breed cats in a research colony derived from a Maine Coon/mixed-breed founder with naturally-occurring HCM. By echocardiography, we identified five cats that developed systolic anterior motion of the mitral valve and LVOT obstruction both at rest and under anesthesia when provoked with an adrenergic agonist. An IV MYK-461 infusion and echocardiography protocol was developed to serially assess contractility and LVOT gradient at multiple MYK-461 concentrations. Treatment with MYK-461 reduced contractility, eliminated systolic anterior motion of the mitral valve and relieved LVOT pressure gradients in an exposure-dependent manner. Our findings provide proof of principle that acute reduction in contractility with MYK-461 is sufficient to relieve LVOT obstruction. Further, these studies suggest that feline

  5. Detecting cardiac contractile activity in the early mouse embryo using multiple modalities

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Chiann-Mun; Miranda, António M. A.; Bub, Gil; Srinivas, Shankar

    2015-01-01

    The heart is one of the first organs to develop during mammalian embryogenesis. In the mouse, it starts to form shortly after gastrulation, and is derived primarily from embryonic mesoderm. The embryonic heart is unique in having to perform a mechanical contractile function while undergoing complex morphogenetic remodeling. Approaches to imaging the morphogenesis and contractile activity of the developing heart are important in understanding not only how this remodeling is controlled but also the origin of congenital heart defects (CHDs). Here, we describe approaches for visualizing contractile activity in the developing mouse embryo, using brightfield time lapse microscopy and confocal microscopy of calcium transients. We describe an algorithm for enhancing this image data and quantifying contractile activity from it. Finally we describe how atomic force microscopy can be used to record contractile activity prior to it being microscopically visible. PMID:25610399

  6. Maternal age effects on myometrial expression of contractile proteins, uterine gene expression, and contractile activity during labor in the rat

    PubMed Central

    Elmes, Matthew; Szyszka, Alexandra; Pauliat, Caroline; Clifford, Bethan; Daniel, Zoe; Cheng, Zhangrui; Wathes, Claire; McMullen, Sarah

    2015-01-01

    Advanced maternal age of first time pregnant mothers is associated with prolonged and dysfunctional labor and significant risk of emergency cesarean section. We investigated the influence of maternal age on myometrial contractility, expression of contractile associated proteins (CAPs), and global gene expression in the parturient uterus. Female Wistar rats either 8 (YOUNG n = 10) or 24 (OLDER n = 10) weeks old were fed laboratory chow, mated, and killed during parturition. Myometrial strips were dissected to determine contractile activity, cholesterol (CHOL) and triglycerides (TAG) content, protein expression of connexin-43 (GJA1), prostaglandin-endoperoxide synthase 2 (PTGS2), and caveolin 1 (CAV-1). Maternal plasma concentrations of prostaglandins PGE2, PGF2α, and progesterone were determined by RIA. Global gene expression in uterine samples was compared using Affymetrix Genechip Gene 2.0 ST arrays and Ingenuity Pathway analysis (IPA). Spontaneous contractility in myometrium exhibited by YOUNG rats was threefold greater than OLDER animals (P < 0.027) but maternal age had no significant effect on myometrial CAP expression, lipid profiles, or pregnancy-related hormones. OLDER myometrium increased contractile activity in response to PGF2α, phenylephrine, and carbachol, a response absent in YOUNG rats (all P < 0.002). Microarray analysis identified that maternal age affected expression of genes related to immune and inflammatory responses, lipid transport and metabolism, steroid metabolism, tissue remodeling, and smooth muscle contraction. In conclusion YOUNG laboring rat myometrium seems primed to contract maximally, whereas activity is blunted in OLDER animals and requires stimulation to meet contractile potential. Further work investigating maternal age effects on myometrial function is required with focus on lipid metabolism and inflammatory pathways. PMID:25876907

  7. Cardiac I-1c overexpression with reengineered AAV improves cardiac function in swine ischemic heart failure.

    PubMed

    Ishikawa, Kiyotake; Fish, Kenneth M; Tilemann, Lisa; Rapti, Kleopatra; Aguero, Jaume; Santos-Gallego, Carlos G; Lee, Ahyoung; Karakikes, Ioannis; Xie, Chaoqin; Akar, Fadi G; Shimada, Yuichi J; Gwathmey, Judith K; Asokan, Aravind; McPhee, Scott; Samulski, Jade; Samulski, Richard Jude; Sigg, Daniel C; Weber, Thomas; Kranias, Evangelia G; Hajjar, Roger J

    2014-12-01

    Cardiac gene therapy has emerged as a promising option to treat advanced heart failure (HF). Advances in molecular biology and gene targeting approaches are offering further novel options for genetic manipulation of the cardiovascular system. The aim of this study was to improve cardiac function in chronic HF by overexpressing constitutively active inhibitor-1 (I-1c) using a novel cardiotropic vector generated by capsid reengineering of adeno-associated virus (BNP116). One month after a large anterior myocardial infarction, 20 Yorkshire pigs randomly received intracoronary injection of either high-dose BNP116.I-1c (1.0 × 10(13) vector genomes (vg), n = 7), low-dose BNP116.I-1c (3.0 × 10(12) vg, n = 7), or saline (n = 6). Compared to baseline, mean left ventricular ejection fraction increased by 5.7% in the high-dose group, and by 5.2% in the low-dose group, whereas it decreased by 7% in the saline group. Additionally, preload-recruitable stroke work obtained from pressure-volume analysis demonstrated significantly higher cardiac performance in the high-dose group. Likewise, other hemodynamic parameters, including stroke volume and contractility index indicated improved cardiac function after the I-1c gene transfer. Furthermore, BNP116 showed a favorable gene expression pattern for targeting the heart. In summary, I-1c overexpression using BNP116 improves cardiac function in a clinically relevant model of ischemic HF.

  8. Considerations for contractile electroactive materials and actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rasmussen, Lenore; Meixler, Lewis D.; Gentile, Charles A.

    2012-04-01

    Electroactive polymers (EAPs) that bend, swell, ripple (first generation materials), and now contract with low electric input (new development) have been produced. The mechanism of contraction is not well understood. Radionuclide-labeled experiments, molecular modeling, electrolyte experiments, pH experiments, and an ionic concentration experiment were used to determine the chain of events that occur during contraction and, reciprocally, expansion when the polarity is reversed, in these ionic EAPs. Plasma treatment of the electrodes, along with other strategies, allows for the embedded electrodes and the EAP material of the actuator to work and move as a unit, with no detachment, by significantly improving the metal-polymer interface, analogous to nerves and tendons moving with muscles during movement. Challenges involved with prototyping actuation using contractile EAPs are also discussed.

  9. Exogenous apelin changes alpha and beta myosin heavy chain mRNA expression and improves cardiac function in PTU-induced hypothyroid rats.

    PubMed

    Faraji Shahrivar, Farzaneh; Badavi, Mohammad; Dianat, Mahin; Mard, Ali; Ahangarpour, Akram; Samarbaf-Zadeh, Alireza

    2016-12-20

    The most important conditions associated with hypothyroidism is the cardiac dysfunction. Apelin is an endogenous ligand, involved in energy storage and metabolism which improves cardiac contractility. This study was done to evaluate the effects of apelin, l-Thyroxin (T4) or a combination of both, on cardiac function and mRNA expression of two contractile proteins, α and β myosin heavy chain (α-MHC and β-MHC), in 6-propyl-2-thiouracil (PTU)-induced hypothyroid rats. Forty male Wistar rats were randomly assigned into five groups: Ctrl (Control), and 4 hypothyroid groups (H, HA, HT, and HAT). The Hypothyroid (H) group received 0.05% PTU in the drinking water for six weeks; the next 3 groups, along with PTU, received apelin (HA, 200μg/kg/day, ip), T4 (HT, 20μg/kg/day, gavage), or a combination of both drugs (HAT) for the last 2weeks (weeks 5 and 6). TSH and T4 were measured using ELISA kit. Isolated hearts of animals were perfused in Langendorff apparatus and left ventricular developed pressure, cardiac contractility, heart rate, rate pressure product and perfusion pressure were assessed using PowerLab ADInstruments. In addition α-MHC and β-MHC mRNA expression were evaluated by RT-PCR method in heart tissue. Apelin alone or accompanied by T4 significantly increased cardiac contractility and performance as compared to hypothyroid group. Apelin also significantly increased the alpha-MHC mRNA expression and in the presence of T4 significantly decreased beta-MHC mRNA expression. It seems that apelin alone may improve cardiac function in hypothyroid rats via genomic pathways.

  10. Modulatory effects of taurine on jejunal contractility.

    PubMed

    Yao, Q Y; Chen, D P; Ye, D M; Diao, Y P; Lin, Y

    2014-12-01

    Taurine (2-aminoethanesulfonic acid) is widely distributed in animal tissues and has diverse pharmacological effects. However, the role of taurine in modulating smooth muscle contractility is still controversial. We propose that taurine (5-80 mM) can exert bidirectional modulation on the contractility of isolated rat jejunal segments. Different low and high contractile states were induced in isolated jejunal segments of rats to observe the effects of taurine and the associated mechanisms. Taurine induced stimulatory effects on the contractility of isolated rat jejunal segments at 3 different low contractile states, and inhibitory effects at 3 different high contractile states. Bidirectional modulation was not observed in the presence of verapamil or tetrodotoxin, suggesting that taurine-induced bidirectional modulation is Ca(2+) dependent and requires the presence of the enteric nervous system. The stimulatory effects of taurine on the contractility of isolated jejunal segments was blocked by atropine but not by diphenhydramine or by cimetidine, suggesting that muscarinic-linked activation was involved in the stimulatory effects when isolated jejunal segments were in a low contractile state. The inhibitory effects of taurine on the contractility of isolated jejunal segments were blocked by propranolol and L-NG-nitroarginine but not by phentolamine, suggesting that adrenergic β receptors and a nitric oxide relaxing mechanism were involved when isolated jejunal segments were in high contractile states. No bidirectional effects of taurine on myosin phosphorylation were observed. The contractile states of jejunal segments determine taurine-induced stimulatory or inhibitory effects, which are associated with muscarinic receptors and adrenergic β receptors, and a nitric oxide associated relaxing mechanism.

  11. Cross-Functional Team Processes and Patient Functional Improvement

    PubMed Central

    Alexander, Jeffrey A; Lichtenstein, Richard; Jinnett, Kimberly; Wells, Rebecca; Zazzali, James; Liu, Dawei

    2005-01-01

    Objective To test the hypothesis that higher levels of participation and functioning in cross-functional psychiatric treatment teams will be related to improved patient outcomes. Data Sources/Study Setting Primary data were collected during the period 1992–1999. The study was conducted in 40 teams within units treating seriously mentally ill patients in 16 Veterans Affairs hospitals across the U.S. Study Design A longitudinal, multilevel analysis assessed the relationship between individual- and team-level variables and patients' ability to perform activities of daily living (ADL) over time. Team data were collected in 1992, 1994, and 1995. The number of times patient data were collected was dependent on the length of time the patient was treated and varied from 1 to 14 between 1992 and 1999. Key variables included: patients' ADL scores (the dependent variable); measures of team participation and team functioning; the number of days from baseline on which a patient's ADLs were assessed; and several control variables. Data Collection Methods Team data were obtained via self-administered questionnaires distributed to staff on the study teams. Additional team data were obtained via questionnaires completed by unit directors contemporaneously with the staff survey. Patient data were collected by trained clinicians at regular intervals using a standard assessment instrument. Principal Findings Results indicated that patients treated in teams with higher levels of staff participation experienced greater improvement in ADL over time. No differences in ADL change were noted for patients treated in teams with higher levels of team functioning. Conclusions Findings support our premise that team process has important implications for patient outcomes. The results suggest that the level of participation by the team as a whole may be a more important process attribute, in terms of patient improvements in ADLs, than the team's smooth functioning. These findings indicate the

  12. Virtual reality training improves balance function

    PubMed Central

    Mao, Yurong; Chen, Peiming; Li, Le; Huang, Dongfeng

    2014-01-01

    Virtual reality is a new technology that simulates a three-dimensional virtual world on a computer and enables the generation of visual, audio, and haptic feedback for the full immersion of users. Users can interact with and observe objects in three-dimensional visual space without limitation. At present, virtual reality training has been widely used in rehabilitation therapy for balance dysfunction. This paper summarizes related articles and other articles suggesting that virtual reality training can improve balance dysfunction in patients after neurological diseases. When patients perform virtual reality training, the prefrontal, parietal cortical areas and other motor cortical networks are activated. These activations may be involved in the reconstruction of neurons in the cerebral cortex. Growing evidence from clinical studies reveals that virtual reality training improves the neurological function of patients with spinal cord injury, cerebral palsy and other neurological impairments. These findings suggest that virtual reality training can activate the cerebral cortex and improve the spatial orientation capacity of patients, thus facilitating the cortex to control balance and increase motion function. PMID:25368651

  13. Virtual reality training improves balance function.

    PubMed

    Mao, Yurong; Chen, Peiming; Li, Le; Huang, Dongfeng

    2014-09-01

    Virtual reality is a new technology that simulates a three-dimensional virtual world on a computer and enables the generation of visual, audio, and haptic feedback for the full immersion of users. Users can interact with and observe objects in three-dimensional visual space without limitation. At present, virtual reality training has been widely used in rehabilitation therapy for balance dysfunction. This paper summarizes related articles and other articles suggesting that virtual reality training can improve balance dysfunction in patients after neurological diseases. When patients perform virtual reality training, the prefrontal, parietal cortical areas and other motor cortical networks are activated. These activations may be involved in the reconstruction of neurons in the cerebral cortex. Growing evidence from clinical studies reveals that virtual reality training improves the neurological function of patients with spinal cord injury, cerebral palsy and other neurological impairments. These findings suggest that virtual reality training can activate the cerebral cortex and improve the spatial orientation capacity of patients, thus facilitating the cortex to control balance and increase motion function.

  14. Compensatory Hypertrophy of Skeletal Muscle: Contractile Characteristics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ianuzzo, C. D.; Chen, V.

    1977-01-01

    Describes an experiment using rats that demonstrates contractile characteristics of normal and hypertrophied muscle. Compensatory hypertrophy of the plantaris muscle is induced by surgical removal of the synergistic gastrocnemium muscle. Includes methods for determination of contractile properties of normal and hypertrophied muscle and…

  15. Identification of Contractile Vacuole Proteins in Trypanosoma cruzi

    PubMed Central

    Park, Miyoung; Martins, Vicente P.; Atwood, James; Moles, Kristen; Collins, Dalis; Rohloff, Peter; Tarleton, Rick; Moreno, Silvia N. J.; Orlando, Ron; Docampo, Roberto

    2011-01-01

    Contractile vacuole complexes are critical components of cell volume regulation and have been shown to have other functional roles in several free-living protists. However, very little is known about the functions of the contractile vacuole complex of the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi, the etiologic agent of Chagas disease, other than a role in osmoregulation. Identification of the protein composition of these organelles is important for understanding their physiological roles. We applied a combined proteomic and bioinfomatic approach to identify proteins localized to the contractile vacuole. Proteomic analysis of a T. cruzi fraction enriched for contractile vacuoles and analyzed by one-dimensional gel electrophoresis and LC-MS/MS resulted in the addition of 109 newly detected proteins to the group of expressed proteins of epimastigotes. We also identified different peptides that map to at least 39 members of the dispersed gene family 1 (DGF-1) providing evidence that many members of this family are simultaneously expressed in epimastigotes. Of the proteins present in the fraction we selected several homologues with known localizations in contractile vacuoles of other organisms and others that we expected to be present in these vacuoles on the basis of their potential roles. We determined the localization of each by expression as GFP-fusion proteins or with specific antibodies. Six of these putative proteins (Rab11, Rab32, AP180, ATPase subunit B, VAMP1, and phosphate transporter) predominantly localized to the vacuole bladder. TcSNARE2.1, TcSNARE2.2, and calmodulin localized to the spongiome. Calmodulin was also cytosolic. Our results demonstrate the utility of combining subcellular fractionation, proteomic analysis, and bioinformatic approaches for localization of organellar proteins that are difficult to detect with whole cell methodologies. The CV localization of the proteins investigated revealed potential novel roles of these organelles in phosphate metabolism

  16. Lanczos steps to improve variational wave functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Becca, Federico; Hu, Wen-Jun; Iqbal, Yasir; Parola, Alberto; Poilblanc, Didier; Sorella, Sandro

    2015-09-01

    Gutzwiller-projected fermionic states can be efficiently implemented within quantum Monte Carlo calculations to define extremely accurate variational wave functions for Heisenberg models on frustrated two-dimensional lattices, not only for the ground state but also for low-energy excitations. The application of few Lanczos steps on top of these states further improves their accuracy, allowing calculations on large clusters. In addition, by computing both the energy and its variance, it is possible to obtain reliable estimations of exact results. Here, we report the cases of the frustrated Heisenberg models on square and Kagome lattices.

  17. Daily prickly pear consumption improves platelet function.

    PubMed

    Wolfram, R; Budinsky, A; Efthimiou, Y; Stomatopoulos, J; Oguogho, A; Sinzinger, H

    2003-07-01

    Prickly pear is traditionally used by Pima Indians as a dietary nutrient against diabetes mellitus. We examined the effect of daily consumption of 250 g in 8 healthy volunteers and 8 patients with mild familial heterozygous hypercholesterolemia on various parameters of platelet function. Beside its action on lipids and lipoproteins, prickly pear consumption significantly reduced the platelet proteins (platelet factor 4 and beta-thromboglobulin), ADP-induced platelet aggregation and improved platelet sensitivity (against PGI2 and PGE1) in volunteers as well as in patients. Also plasma 11-DH-TXB2 and the WU-test showed a significant improvement in both patients and volunteers. In contrast, collagen-induced platelet aggregation and the number of circulating endothelial cells showed a significant response in patients only. No influence of prickly pear ingestion on peripheral platelet count was monitored. The dietary run-in period did not influence any of the parameters of haemostasis examined. No sex difference was seen. Prickly pear may induce at least part of its beneficial actions on the cardiovascular system via decreasing platelet activity and thereby improving haemostatic balance.

  18. Dilated Cardiomyopathy: Normalized Multiparametric Myocardial Strain Predicts Contractile Recovery

    PubMed Central

    Henn, Matthew C.; Lawrance, Christopher P.; Kar, Julia; Cupps, Brian P.; Kulshrestha, Kevin; Koerner, Danielle; Wallace, Kathleen; Joseph, Susan; Ewald, Greg; Pasque, Michael K.

    2015-01-01

    Background Left ventricular (LV) contractile injury in dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) may occur in a consistently heterogeneous distribution, suggesting that early injury “sentinel” regions may have prognostic significance. Heightened surveillance of these regions with high-resolution contractile metrics may predict recovery in DCM. Methods Multiple 3D strain parameters were calculated at each of 15,300 LV grid-points from systolic displacement data obtained from cardiac MRI in 124 test subjects. In 24 DCM patients, z-scores for two strain parameters at each grid-point were calculated by comparison of patient-specific strain values to respective point-specific mean and standard deviation values from a normal human strain database (n=100). Multiparametric strain z-scores were averaged over 6 LV regions at basilar, mid, and apical levels (18 sub-regions). DCM patients were stratified into 3 groups based on a blinded review of clinical contractile recovery (complete[n=7]; incomplete[n=7]; none[n=10]). Results Basilar-septal sub-regions were consistently heavily injured. Basilar-septal z-scores were significantly larger (worse) than those for the rest of the LV (2.73±1.27 vs 2.22±0.83; p=0.011) and lateral wall (2.73±1.27 vs 1.44±0.72; p<0.001). All patients with sentinel region average multiparametric strain z-scores <2 standard deviations (n=6) experienced complete recovery, while 17/18 DCM patients with z-scores >2 standard deviations experienced incomplete or no contractile recovery. Conclusions Contractile injury in DCM is heterogeneous with basilar-septal regions injured more than lateral regions. The targeting of early-injury sentinel regions for heightened surveillance with high-resolution metrics of micro-regional contractile function may accurately predict recovery on medical therapy. A 2 standard deviation z-score threshold may predict contractile recovery. PMID:26228597

  19. Improving information retrieval in functional analysis.

    PubMed

    Rodriguez, Juan C; González, Germán A; Fresno, Cristóbal; Llera, Andrea S; Fernández, Elmer A

    2016-12-01

    Transcriptome analysis is essential to understand the mechanisms regulating key biological processes and functions. The first step usually consists of identifying candidate genes; to find out which pathways are affected by those genes, however, functional analysis (FA) is mandatory. The most frequently used strategies for this purpose are Gene Set and Singular Enrichment Analysis (GSEA and SEA) over Gene Ontology. Several statistical methods have been developed and compared in terms of computational efficiency and/or statistical appropriateness. However, whether their results are similar or complementary, the sensitivity to parameter settings, or possible bias in the analyzed terms has not been addressed so far. Here, two GSEA and four SEA methods and their parameter combinations were evaluated in six datasets by comparing two breast cancer subtypes with well-known differences in genetic background and patient outcomes. We show that GSEA and SEA lead to different results depending on the chosen statistic, model and/or parameters. Both approaches provide complementary results from a biological perspective. Hence, an Integrative Functional Analysis (IFA) tool is proposed to improve information retrieval in FA. It provides a common gene expression analytic framework that grants a comprehensive and coherent analysis. Only a minimal user parameter setting is required, since the best SEA/GSEA alternatives are integrated. IFA utility was demonstrated by evaluating four prostate cancer and the TCGA breast cancer microarray datasets, which showed its biological generalization capabilities.

  20. Obesity Appears to Be Associated With Altered Muscle Protein Synthetic and Breakdown Responses to Increased Nutrient Delivery in Older Men, but Not Reduced Muscle Mass or Contractile Function.

    PubMed

    Murton, Andrew J; Marimuthu, Kanagaraj; Mallinson, Joanne E; Selby, Anna L; Smith, Kenneth; Rennie, Michael J; Greenhaff, Paul L

    2015-09-01

    Obesity is increasing, yet despite the necessity of maintaining muscle mass and function with age, the effect of obesity on muscle protein turnover in older adults remains unknown. Eleven obese (BMI 31.9 ± 1.1 kg · m(-2)) and 15 healthy-weight (BMI 23.4 ± 0.3 kg · m(-2)) older men (55-75 years old) participated in a study that determined muscle protein synthesis (MPS) and leg protein breakdown (LPB) under postabsorptive (hypoinsulinemic-euglycemic clamp) and postprandial (hyperinsulinemic hyperaminoacidemic-euglycemic clamp) conditions. Obesity was associated with systemic inflammation, greater leg fat mass, and patterns of mRNA expression consistent with muscle deconditioning, whereas leg lean mass, strength, and work done during maximal exercise were no different. Under postabsorptive conditions, MPS and LPB were equivalent between groups, whereas insulin and amino acid administration increased MPS in only healthy-weight subjects and was associated with lower leg glucose disposal (LGD) (63%) in obese men. Blunting of MPS in the obese men was offset by an apparent decline in LPB, which was absent in healthy-weight subjects. Lower postprandial LGD in obese subjects and blunting of MPS responses to amino acids suggest that obesity in older adults is associated with diminished muscle metabolic quality. This does not, however, appear to be associated with lower leg lean mass or strength.

  1. Acupuncture improves cognitive function: A systematic review☆

    PubMed Central

    Leung, Mason Chin Pang; Yip, Ka Keung; Lam, Chung Tsung; Lam, Ka Shun; Lau, Wai; Yu, Wing Lam; Leung, Amethyst King Man; So, Kwok-fai

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Acupuncture has been used as a treatment for cognitive impairment. OBJECTIVE: This review assesses clinical evidence for or against acupuncture as a treatment for cognitive impairment. This review also discusses the proposed mechanism(s) that could link acupuncture to improved cognitive function. METHODS: We searched the literature using PolyUone search from its inception to January 2013, with full text available and language limited to English. Levels of evidence were examined using Oxford Centre for Evidence-based Medicine–Levels of Evidence (March, 2009). RESULTS: Twelve studies met the inclusion criteria: 3 human studies and 9 animal studies. Levels of evidence ranged from level 1b to level 5. CONCLUSION: Most animal studies demonstrated a positive effect of acupuncture on cognitive impairment. However, the results of human studies were inconsistent. Further high-quality human studies with greater statistical power are needed to determine the effectiveness of acupuncture and an optimal protocol. PMID:25206464

  2. Implementing cell contractility in filament-based cytoskeletal models.

    PubMed

    Fallqvist, B

    2016-02-01

    Cells are known to respond over time to mechanical stimuli, even actively generating force at longer times. In this paper, a microstructural filament-based cytoskeletal network model is extended to incorporate this active response, and a computational study to assess the influence on relaxation behaviour was performed. The incorporation of an active response was achieved by including a strain energy function of contractile activity from the cross-linked actin filaments. A four-state chemical model and strain energy function was adopted, and generalisation to three dimensions and the macroscopic deformation field was performed by integration over the unit sphere. Computational results in MATLAB and ABAQUS/Explicit indicated an active cellular response over various time-scales, dependent on contractile parameters. Important features such as force generation and increasing cell stiffness due to prestress are qualitatively predicted. The work in this paper can easily be extended to encompass other filament-based cytoskeletal models as well.

  3. Chronic Contractile Dysfunction without Hypertrophy Does Not Provoke a Compensatory Transcriptional Response in Mouse Hearts

    PubMed Central

    Grubb, David R.; McMullen, Julie R.; Woodcock, Elizabeth A.

    2016-01-01

    Diseased myocardium from humans and experimental animal models shows heightened expression and activity of a specific subtype of phospholipase C (PLC), the splice variant PLCβ1b. Previous studies from our group showed that increasing PLCβ1b expression in adult mouse hearts by viral transduction was sufficient to cause sustained contractile dysfunction of rapid onset, which was maintained indefinitely in the absence of other pathological changes in the myocardium. We hypothesized that impaired contractility alone would be sufficient to induce a compensatory transcriptional response. Unbiased, comprehensive mRNA-sequencing was performed on 6 biological replicates of rAAV6-treated blank, PLCβ1b and PLCβ1a (closely related but inactive splice variant) hearts 8 weeks after injection, when reduced contractility was manifest in PLCβ1b hearts without evidence of induced hypertrophy. Expression of PLCβ1b resulted in expression changes in only 9 genes at FDR<0.1 when compared with control and these genes appeared unrelated to contractility. Importantly, PLCβ1a caused similar mild expression changes to PLCβ1b, despite a complete lack of effect of this isoform on cardiac contractility. We conclude that contractile depression caused by PLCβ1b activation is largely independent of changes in the transcriptome, and thus that lowered contractility is not sufficient in itself to provoke measurable transcriptomic alterations. In addition, our data stress the importance of a stringent control group to filter out transcriptional changes unrelated to cardiac function. PMID:27359099

  4. Considerations for Contractile Electroactive Materials and Actuators

    SciTech Connect

    Rasmussen, Lenore; Erickson, Carl J.; Meixler, Lewis D.; Ascione, George; Gentile, Charles A.; Tilson, Carl; Bernasek, Stephen L.; Abelev, Esta

    2010-02-19

    Ras Labs produces electroactive polymer (EAP) based materials and actuators that bend, swell, ripple and now contract (new development) with low electric input. This is an important attribute because of the ability of contraction to produce life-like motion. The mechanism of contraction is not well understood. Radionuclide-labeled experiments were conducted to follow the movement of electrolytes and water in these EAPs when activated. Extreme temperature experiments were performed on the contractile EAPs with very favorable results. One of the biggest challenges in developing these actuators, however, is the electrode-EAP interface because of the pronounced movement of the EAP. Plasma treatments of metallic electrodes were investigated in order to improve the attachment of the embedded electrodes to the EAP material. Surface analysis, adhesive testing, and mechanical testing were conducted to test metal surfaces and metal-polymer interfaces. The nitrogen plasma treatment of titanium produced a strong metal-polymer interface; however, oxygen plasma treatment of both stainless steel and titanium produced even stronger metal-polymer interfaces. Plasma treatment of the electrodes allows for the embedded electrodes and the EAP material of the actuator to work and move as a unit, with no detachment, by significantly improving the metal-polymer interface.

  5. Functional dysphonia: strategies to improve patient outcomes

    PubMed Central

    Behlau, Mara; Madazio, Glaucya; Oliveira, Gisele

    2015-01-01

    Functional dysphonia (FD) refers to a voice problem in the absence of a physical condition. It is a multifaceted voice disorder. There is no consensus with regard to its definition and inclusion criteria for diagnosis. FD has many predisposing and precipitating factors, which may include genetic susceptibility, psychological traits, and the vocal behavior itself. The assessment of voice disorders should be multidimensional. In addition to the clinical examination, auditory-perceptual, acoustic, and self-assessment analyses are very important. Self-assessment was introduced in the field of voice 25 years ago and has produced a major impact in the clinical and scientific scenario. The choice of treatment for FD is vocal rehabilitation by means of direct therapy; however, compliance has been an issue, except for cases of functional aphonia or when an intensive training is administered. Nevertheless, there are currently no controlled studies that have explored the different options of treatment regimens for these patients. Strategies to improve patient outcome involve proper multidisciplinary diagnosis in order to exclude neurological and psychiatric disorders, careful voice documentation with quantitative measurement and qualitative description of the vocal deviation for comparison after treatment, acoustic evaluation to gather data on the mechanism involved in voice production, self-assessment questionnaires to map the impact of the voice problem on the basis of the patient’s perspective, referral to psychological evaluation in cases of suspected clinical anxiety and/or depression, identification of dysfunctional coping strategies, self-regulation data to assist patients with their vocal load, and direct and intensive vocal rehabilitation to reduce psychological resistance and to reassure patient’s recovery. An international multicentric effort, involving a large population of voice-disordered patients with no physical pathology, could produce enough data for

  6. Contractile-Ring Assembly in Fission Yeast Cytokinesis: Recent Advances and New Perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Lee, I-Ju; Coffman, Valerie C.; Wu, Jian-Qiu

    2017-01-01

    The fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe is an excellent model organism to study cytokinesis. Here, we review recent advances on contractile-ring assembly in fission yeast. First, we summarize the assembly of cytokinesis nodes, the precursors of a normal contractile ring. IQGAP Rng2 and myosin essential light chain Cdc4 are recruited by the anillin-like protein Mid1, followed by the addition of other cytokinesis node proteins. Mid1 localization on the plasma membrane is stabilized by interphase node proteins. Second, we discuss proteins and processes that contribute to the search, capture, pull, and release mechanism of contractile-ring assembly. Actin filaments nucleated by formin Cdc12, the motor activity of myosin-II, the stiffness of the actin network, and severing of actin filaments by cofilin all play essential roles in contractile-ring assembly. Finally, we discuss the Mid1-independent pathway for ring assembly, and the possible mechanisms underlying the ring maturation and constriction. Collectively, we provide an overview of the current understanding of contractile-ring assembly and uncover future directions in studying cytokinesis in fission yeast. PMID:22887981

  7. Transmural stretch-dependent regulation of contractile properties in rat heart and its alteration after myocardial infarction.

    PubMed

    Cazorla, Olivier; Szilagyi, Szabolcs; Le Guennec, Jean-Yves; Vassort, Guy; Lacampagne, Alain

    2005-01-01

    The "stretch-sensitization" response is essential to the regulation of heart contractility. An increase in diastolic volume improves systolic contraction. The cellular mechanisms of this modulation, the Frank-Starling law, are still uncertain. Moreover, their alterations in heart failure remains controversial. Here, using left ventricular skinned rat myocytes, we show a nonuniform stretch-sensitization of myofilament activation across the ventricular wall. Stretch-dependent Ca2+ sensitization of myofilaments increases from sub-epicardium to sub-endocardium and is correlated with an increase in passive tension. This passive tension-dependent component of myofibrillar activation is not associated with expression of titin isoforms, changes in troponin I level, and phosphorylation status. Instead, we observe that stretch induces phosphorylation of ventricular myosin light chain 2 isoform (VLC2b) in sub-endocardium specifically. Thus, VLC2b phosphorylation could act as a stretch-dependent modulator of activation tuned within normal heart. Moreover, in postmyocardial infarcted rat, the gradient of stretch-dependent Ca2+ sensitization disappears associated with a lack of VLC2b phosphorylation in sub-endocardium. In conclusion, nonuniformity is a major characteristic of the normal adult left ventricle (LV). The heterogeneous myocardial deformation pattern might be caused not only by the morphological heterogeneity of the tissue in the LV wall, but also by the nonuniform contractile properties of the myocytes across the wall. The loss of a contractile transmural gradient after myocardial infarction should contribute to the impaired LV function.

  8. Towards a Tissue-Engineered Contractile Fontan-Conduit: The Fate of Cardiac Myocytes in the Subpulmonary Circulation

    PubMed Central

    Biermann, Daniel; Eder, Alexandra; Arndt, Florian; Seoudy, Hatim; Reichenspurner, Hermann; Mir, Thomas; Riso, Arlindo; Kozlik-Feldmann, Rainer; Peldschus, Kersten; Kaul, Michael G.; Schuler, Tillman; Krasemann, Susanne; Hansen, Arne; Eschenhagen, Thomas; Sachweh, Jörg S.

    2016-01-01

    The long-term outcome of patients with single ventricles improved over time, but remains poor compared to other congenital heart lesions with biventricular circulation. Main cause for this unfavourable outcome is the unphysiological hemodynamic of the Fontan circulation, such as subnormal systemic cardiac output and increased systemic-venous pressure. To overcome this limitation, we are developing the concept of a contractile extracardiac Fontan-tunnel. In this study, we evaluated the survival and structural development of a tissue-engineered conduit under in vivo conditions. Engineered heart tissue was generated from ventricular heart cells of neonatal Wistar rats, fibrinogen and thrombin. Engineered heart tissues started beating around day 8 in vitro and remained contractile in vivo throughout the experiment. After culture for 14 days constructs were implanted around the right superior vena cava of Wistar rats (n = 12). Animals were euthanized after 7, 14, 28 and 56 days postoperatively. Hematoxylin and eosin staining showed cardiomyocytes arranged in thick bundles within the engineered heart tissue-conduit. Immunostaining of sarcomeric actin, alpha-actin and connexin 43 revealed a well -developed cardiac myocyte structure. Magnetic resonance imaging (d14, n = 3) revealed no constriction or stenosis of the superior vena cava by the constructs. Engineered heart tissues survive and contract for extended periods after implantation around the superior vena cava of rats. Generation of larger constructs is warranted to evaluate functional benefits of a contractile Fontan-conduit. PMID:27875570

  9. MDMA induces cardiac contractile dysfunction through autophagy upregulation and lysosome destabilization in rats.

    PubMed

    Shintani-ishida, Kaori; Saka, Kanju; Yamaguchi, Koji; Hayashida, Makiko; Nagai, Hisashi; Takemura, Genzou; Yoshida, Ken-ichi

    2014-05-01

    The underlying mechanisms of cardiotoxicity of 3,4-methylenedioxymethylamphetamine (MDMA, "ecstasy") abuse are unclear. Autophagy exerts either adaptive or maladaptive effects on cardiac function in various pathological settings, but nothing is known on the role of autophagy in the MDMA cardiotoxicity. Here, we investigated the mechanism through which autophagy may be involved in MDMA-induced cardiac contractile dysfunction. Rats were injected intraperitoneally with MDMA (20mg/kg) or saline. Left ventricular (LV) echocardiography and LV pressure measurement demonstrated reduction of LV systolic contractility 24h after MDMA administration. Western blot analysis showed a time-dependent increase in the levels of microtubule-associated protein light chain 3-II (LC3-II) and cathepsin-D after MDMA administration. Electron microscopy showed the presence of autophagic vacuoles in cardiomyocytes. MDMA upregulated phosphorylation of adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK) at Thr172, mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) at Thr2446, Raptor at Ser792, and Unc51-like kinase (ULK1) at Ser555, suggesting activation of autophagy through the AMPK-mTOR pathway. The effects of autophagic inhibitors 3-methyladenine (3-MA) and chloroquine (CQ) on LC3-II levels indicated that MDMA enhanced autophagosome formation, but attenuated autophagosome clearance. MDMA also induced release of cathepsins into cytosol, and western blotting and electron microscopy showed cardiac troponin I (cTnI) degradation and myofibril damage, respectively. 3-MA, CQ, and a lysosomal inhibitor, E64c, inhibited cTnI proteolysis and improved contractile dysfunction after MDMA administration. In conclusion, MDMA causes lysosome destabilization following activation of the autophagy-lysosomal pathway, through which released lysosomal proteases damage myofibrils and induce LV systolic dysfunction in rat heart.

  10. Lidocaine decreases the xylazine-evoked contractility in pregnant cows.

    PubMed

    Piccinno, M; Rizzo, A; Mutinati, M; D'Onghia, G; Sciorsci, R L

    2016-08-01

    The objective of this in vitro study was to evaluate and compare the effects of xylazine on basal uterine contractility of bovine pregnant uterine strips and that of lidocaine on xylazine-sensitized bovine pregnant uterine strips, at different stages of pregnancy. Basal contractility was evaluated in an isolated organ bath and the functionality of the strips throughout the experiment was evaluated using a dose of carbachol (10(-5)M). Uterine motility, expressed with amplitude, frequency of contractions as well as the area under the curve, was recorded in different stages of pregnancy and data were collected at 15-min intervals (5-min before and 5-min after xylazine administration and 5-min after lidocaine addition on the plateau contraction induced by xylazine). Uterine motility increased in all the stages of pregnancy after xylazine addition and gradually decreased after treatment with lidocaine. These data suggest that lidocaine might decrease the tonic effect induced by xylazine on bovine pregnant uteri.

  11. Some Fundamental Molecular Mechanisms of Contractility in Fibrous Macromolecules

    PubMed Central

    Mandelkern, L.

    1967-01-01

    The fundamental molecular mechanisms of contractility and tension development in fibrous macromolecules are developed from the point of view of the principles of polymer physical chemistry. The problem is treated in a general manner to encompass the behavior of all macromolecular systems irrespective of their detailed chemical structure and particular function, if any. Primary attention is given to the contractile process which accompanies the crystal-liquid transition in axially oriented macromolecular systems. The theoretical nature of the process is discussed, and many experimental examples are given from the literature which demonstrate the expected behavior. Experimental attention is focused on the contraction of fibrous proteins, and the same underlying molecular mechanism is shown to be operative for a variety of different systems. PMID:6050598

  12. Altitude-induced changes in muscle contractile properties.

    PubMed

    Perrey, Stéphane; Rupp, Thomas

    2009-01-01

    Because of its high energetic demand, skeletal muscle is sensitive to changes in the partial pressure of oxygen. Most human studies on in vivo skeletal muscle function during hypoxia were performed with voluntary contractions. However, skeletal muscle function is not only characterized by voluntary maximal or repeated force- generating capacity, but also by force generated by evoked muscle contractions (i.e., force-frequency properties). This mini-review reports on the effects of acute or prolonged exposure to hypoxia on human skeletal muscle performance and contractile properties. The latter depend on both the amount and type of contractile proteins and the efficiency of the cellular mechanism of excitation-contraction coupling. Observations on humans indicate that hypoxia (during simulated ascent or brief exposure) exerts modest influences on the membrane propagation of the muscle action potentials during voluntary contractions. Overall in humans, in physiological conditions, including that of climbing Mt. Everest, there is extraordinarily little that changes with regard to maximal force-generating capacity. Interestingly, it appears that the adaptations to chronic hypoxia minimize the effects on skeletal muscle dysfunction (i.e., impairment during fatigue resistance exercise and in muscle contractile properties) that may occur during acute hypoxia for some isolated muscle exercises. Only sustained isometric exercise exceeding a certain intensity (30% MVC) and causing substantial and sustained ischemia is not affected by acute hypoxia.

  13. Improved algorithm for calculating the Chandrasekhar function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jablonski, A.

    2013-02-01

    algorithms by selecting ranges of the argument omega in which the performance is the fastest. Reasons for the new version: Some of the theoretical models describing electron transport in condensed matter need a source of the Chandrasekhar H function values with an accuracy of at least 10 decimal places. Additionally, calculations of this function should be as fast as possible since frequent calls to a subroutine providing this function are made (e.g., numerical evaluation of a double integral with a complicated integrand containing the H function). Both conditions were satisfied in the algorithm previously published [1]. However, it has been found that a proper selection of the quadrature in an integral representation of the Chandrasekhar function may considerably decrease the running time. By suitable selection of the number of abscissas in Gauss-Legendre quadrature, the execution time was decreased by a factor of more than 20. Simultaneously, the accuracy of results has not been affected. Summary of revisions: (1) As in previous work [1], two integral representations of the Chandrasekhar function, H(x,omega), were considered: the expression published by Dudarev and Whelan [2] and the expression published by Davidović et al. [3]. The algorithms implementing these representations were designated A and B, respectively. All integrals in these implementations were previously calculated using Romberg quadrature. It has been found, however, that the use of Gauss-Legendre quadrature considerably improved the performance of both algorithms. Two conditions have to be satisfied. (i) The number of abscissas, N, has to be rather large, and (ii) the abscissas and corresponding weights should be determined with accuracy as high as possible. The abscissas and weights are available for N=16, 20, 24, 32, 40, 48, 64, 80, and 96 with accuracy of 20 decimal places [4], and all these values were introduced into a new procedure GAUSS replacing procedure ROMBERG. Due to the fact that the

  14. In utero LPS exposure impairs preterm diaphragm contractility.

    PubMed

    Song, Yong; Karisnan, Kanakeswary; Noble, Peter B; Berry, Clare A; Lavin, Tina; Moss, Timothy J M; Bakker, Anthony J; Pinniger, Gavin J; Pillow, J Jane

    2013-11-01

    Preterm birth is associated with inflammation of the fetal membranes (chorioamnionitis). We aimed to establish how chorioamnionitis affects the contractile function and phenotype of the preterm diaphragm. Pregnant ewes received intra-amniotic injections of saline or 10 mg LPS, 2 days or 7 days before delivery at 121 days of gestation (term = 150 d). Diaphragm strips were dissected for the assessment of contractile function after terminal anesthesia. The inflammatory cytokine response, myosin heavy chain (MHC) fibers, proteolytic pathways, and intracellular molecular signaling were analyzed using quantitative PCR, ELISA, immunofluorescence staining, biochemical assays, and Western blotting. Diaphragm peak twitch force and maximal tetanic force were approximately 30% lower than control values in the 2-day and 7-day LPS groups. Activation of the NF-κB pathway, an inflammatory response, and increased proteasome activity were observed in the 2-day LPS group relative to the control or 7-day LPS group. No inflammatory response was evident after a 7-day LPS exposure. Seven-day LPS exposure markedly decreased p70S6K phosphorylation, but no effect on other signaling pathways was evident. The proportion of MHC IIa fibers was lower than that for control samples in the 7-day LPS group. MHC I fiber proportions did not differ between groups. These results demonstrate that intrauterine LPS impairs preterm diaphragmatic contractility after 2-day and 7-day exposures. Diaphragm dysfunction, resulting from 2-day LPS exposure, was associated with a transient activation of proinflammatory signaling, with subsequent increased atrophic gene expression and enhanced proteasome activity. Persistently impaired contractility for the 7-day LPS exposure was associated with the down-regulation of a key component of the protein synthetic signaling pathway and a reduction in the proportions of MHC IIa fibers.

  15. Deletion of neuropilin 2 enhances detrusor contractility following bladder outlet obstruction

    PubMed Central

    Vasquez, Evalynn; Cristofaro, Vivian; Lukianov, Stefan; Burkhard, Fiona C.; Monastyrskaya, Katia; Bielenberg, Diane R.; Sullivan, Maryrose P.; Adam, Rosalyn M.

    2017-01-01

    Chronic urethral obstruction and the ensuing bladder wall remodeling can lead to diminished bladder smooth muscle (BSM) contractility and debilitating lower urinary tract symptoms. No effective pharmacotherapy exists to restore BSM contractile function. Neuropilin 2 (Nrp2) is a transmembrane protein that is highly expressed in BSM. Nrp2 deletion in mice leads to increased BSM contraction. We determined whether genetic ablation of Nrp2 could restore BSM contractility following obstruction. Partial bladder outlet obstruction (pBOO) was created by urethral occlusion in mice with either constitutive and ubiquitous, or inducible smooth muscle–specific deletion of Nrp2, and Nrp2-intact littermates. Mice without obstruction served as additional controls. Contractility was measured by isometric tension testing. Nrp2 deletion prior to pBOO increased force generation in BSM 4 weeks following surgery. Deletion of Nrp2 in mice already subjected to pBOO for 4 weeks showed increased contractility of tissues tested 6 weeks after surgery compared with nondeleted controls. Assessment of tissues from patients with urodynamically defined bladder outlet obstruction revealed reduced NRP2 levels in obstructed bladders with compensated compared with decompensated function, relative to asymptomatic controls. We conclude that downregulation of Nrp2 promotes BSM force generation. Neuropilin 2 may represent a novel target to restore contractility following obstruction. PMID:28194441

  16. Deletion of neuropilin 2 enhances detrusor contractility following bladder outlet obstruction.

    PubMed

    Vasquez, Evalynn; Cristofaro, Vivian; Lukianov, Stefan; Burkhard, Fiona C; Gheinani, Ali Hashemi; Monastyrskaya, Katia; Bielenberg, Diane R; Sullivan, Maryrose P; Adam, Rosalyn M

    2017-02-09

    Chronic urethral obstruction and the ensuing bladder wall remodeling can lead to diminished bladder smooth muscle (BSM) contractility and debilitating lower urinary tract symptoms. No effective pharmacotherapy exists to restore BSM contractile function. Neuropilin 2 (Nrp2) is a transmembrane protein that is highly expressed in BSM. Nrp2 deletion in mice leads to increased BSM contraction. We determined whether genetic ablation of Nrp2 could restore BSM contractility following obstruction. Partial bladder outlet obstruction (pBOO) was created by urethral occlusion in mice with either constitutive and ubiquitous, or inducible smooth muscle-specific deletion of Nrp2, and Nrp2-intact littermates. Mice without obstruction served as additional controls. Contractility was measured by isometric tension testing. Nrp2 deletion prior to pBOO increased force generation in BSM 4 weeks following surgery. Deletion of Nrp2 in mice already subjected to pBOO for 4 weeks showed increased contractility of tissues tested 6 weeks after surgery compared with nondeleted controls. Assessment of tissues from patients with urodynamically defined bladder outlet obstruction revealed reduced NRP2 levels in obstructed bladders with compensated compared with decompensated function, relative to asymptomatic controls. We conclude that downregulation of Nrp2 promotes BSM force generation. Neuropilin 2 may represent a novel target to restore contractility following obstruction.

  17. A method to test contractility of the supraspinatus muscle in mouse, rat, and rabbit

    PubMed Central

    Valencia, Ana P.; Iyer, Shama R.; Pratt, Stephen J. P.; Gilotra, Mohit N.

    2015-01-01

    The rotator cuff (RTC) muscles not only generate movement but also provide important shoulder joint stability. RTC tears, particularly in the supraspinatus muscle, are a common clinical problem. Despite some biological healing after RTC repair, persistent problems include poor functional outcomes with high retear rates after surgical repair. Animal models allow further exploration of the sequela of RTC injury such as fibrosis, inflammation, and fatty infiltration, but there are few options regarding contractility for mouse, rat, and rabbit. Histological findings can provide a “direct measure” of damage, but the most comprehensive measure of the overall health of the muscle is contractile force. However, information regarding normal supraspinatus size and contractile function is scarce. Animal models provide the means to compare muscle histology, imaging, and contractility within individual muscles in various models of injury and disease, but to date, most testing of animal contractile force has been limited primarily to hindlimb muscles. Here, we describe an in vivo method to assess contractility of the supraspinatus muscle and describe differences in methods and representative outcomes for mouse, rat, and rabbit. PMID:26586911

  18. Improving Sensorimotor Function Using Stochastic Vestibular Stimulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Galvan, R. C.; Clark, T. K.; Merfeld, D. M.; Bloomberg, J. J.; Mulavara, A. P.; Oman, C. M.

    2014-01-01

    Astronauts experience sensorimotor changes during spaceflight, particularly during G-transition phases. Post flight sensorimotor changes may include postural and gait instability, spatial disorientation, and visual performance decrements, all of which can degrade operational capabilities of the astronauts and endanger the crew. Crewmember safety would be improved if these detrimental effects of spaceflight could be mitigated by a sensorimotor countermeasure and even further if adaptation to baseline could be facilitated. The goal of this research is to investigate the potential use of stochastic vestibular stimulation (SVS) as a technology to improve sensorimotor function. We hypothesize that low levels of SVS will improve sensorimotor performance through stochastic resonance (SR). The SR phenomenon occurs when the response of a nonlinear system to a weak input signal is optimized by the application of a particular nonzero level of noise. Two studies have been initiated to investigate the beneficial effects and potential practical usage of SVS. In both studies, electrical vestibular stimulation is applied via electrodes on the mastoid processes using a constant current stimulator. The first study aims to determine the repeatability of the effect of vestibular stimulation on sensorimotor performance and perception in order to better understand the practical use of SVS. The beneficial effect of low levels of SVS on balance performance has been shown in the past. This research uses the same balance task repeated multiple times within a day and across days to study the repeatability of the stimulation effects. The balance test consists of 50 sec trials in which the subject stands with his or her feet together, arms crossed, and eyes closed on compliant foam. Varying levels of SVS, ranging from 0-700 micro A, are applied across different trials. The subject-specific optimal SVS level is that which results in the best balance performance as measured by inertial

  19. Depressed phosphatidic acid-induced contractile activity of failing cardiomyocytes.

    PubMed

    Tappia, Paramjit S; Maddaford, Thane G; Hurtado, Cecilia; Panagia, Vincenzo; Pierce, Grant N

    2003-01-10

    The effects of phosphatidic acid (PA), a known inotropic agent, on Ca(2+) transients and contractile activity of cardiomyocytes in congestive heart failure (CHF) due to myocardial infarction were examined. In control cells, PA induced a significant increase (25%) in active cell shortening and Ca(2+) transients. The phospholipase C (PLC) inhibitor, 2-nitro-4-carboxyphenyl N,N-diphenylcarbonate, blocked the positive inotropic action induced by PA, indicating that PA induces an increase in contractile activity and Ca(2+) transients through stimulation of PLC. Conversely, in failing cardiomyocytes there was a loss of PA-induced increase in active cell shortening and Ca(2+) transients. PA did not alter resting cell length. Both diastolic and systolic [Ca(2+)] were significantly elevated in the failing cardiomyocytes. In vitro assessment of the cardiac sarcolemmal (SL) PLC activity revealed that the impaired failing cardiomyocyte response to PA was associated with a diminished stimulation of SL PLC activity by PA. Our results identify an important defect in the PA-PLC signaling pathway in failing cardiomyocytes, which may have significant implications for the depressed contractile function during CHF.

  20. Functional improvement and maturation of rat and human engineered heart tissue by chronic electrical stimulation.

    PubMed

    Hirt, Marc N; Boeddinghaus, Jasper; Mitchell, Alice; Schaaf, Sebastian; Börnchen, Christian; Müller, Christian; Schulz, Herbert; Hubner, Norbert; Stenzig, Justus; Stoehr, Andrea; Neuber, Christiane; Eder, Alexandra; Luther, Pradeep K; Hansen, Arne; Eschenhagen, Thomas

    2014-09-01

    Spontaneously beating engineered heart tissue (EHT) represents an advanced in vitro model for drug testing and disease modeling, but cardiomyocytes in EHTs are less mature and generate lower forces than in the adult heart. We devised a novel pacing system integrated in a setup for videooptical recording of EHT contractile function over time and investigated whether sustained electrical field stimulation improved EHT properties. EHTs were generated from neonatal rat heart cells (rEHT, n=96) or human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC)-derived cardiomyocytes (hEHT, n=19). Pacing with biphasic pulses was initiated on day 4 of culture. REHT continuously paced for 16-18 days at 0.5Hz developed 2.2× higher forces than nonstimulated rEHT. This was reflected by higher cardiomyocyte density in the center of EHTs, increased connexin-43 abundance as investigated by two-photon microscopy and remarkably improved sarcomere ultrastructure including regular M-bands. Further signs of tissue maturation include a rightward shift (to more physiological values) of the Ca(2+)-response curve, increased force response to isoprenaline and decreased spontaneous beating activity. Human EHTs stimulated at 2Hz in the first week and 1.5Hz thereafter developed 1.5× higher forces than nonstimulated hEHT on day 14, an ameliorated muscular network of longitudinally oriented cardiomyocytes and a higher cytoplasm-to-nucleus ratio. Taken together, continuous pacing improved structural and functional properties of rEHTs and hEHTs to an unprecedented level. Electrical stimulation appears to be an important step toward the generation of fully mature EHT.

  1. Time course analysis of mechanical ventilation-induced diaphragm contractile muscle dysfunction in the rat.

    PubMed

    Corpeno, R; Dworkin, B; Cacciani, N; Salah, H; Bergman, H-M; Ravara, B; Vitadello, M; Gorza, L; Gustafson, A-M; Hedström, Y; Petersson, J; Feng, H-Z; Jin, J-P; Iwamoto, H; Yagi, N; Artemenko, K; Bergquist, J; Larsson, L

    2014-09-01

    Controlled mechanical ventilation (CMV) plays a key role in triggering the impaired diaphragm muscle function and the concomitant delayed weaning from the respirator in critically ill intensive care unit (ICU) patients. To date, experimental and clinical studies have primarily focused on early effects on the diaphragm by CMV, or at specific time points. To improve our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the impaired diaphragm muscle function in response to mechanical ventilation, we have performed time-resolved analyses between 6 h and 14 days using an experimental rat ICU model allowing detailed studies of the diaphragm in response to long-term CMV. A rapid and early decline in maximum muscle fibre force and preceding muscle fibre atrophy was observed in the diaphragm in response to CMV, resulting in an 85% reduction in residual diaphragm fibre function after 9-14 days of CMV. A modest loss of contractile proteins was observed and linked to an early activation of the ubiquitin proteasome pathway, myosin:actin ratios were not affected and the transcriptional regulation of myosin isoforms did not show any dramatic changes during the observation period. Furthermore, small angle X-ray diffraction analyses demonstrate that myosin can bind to actin in an ATP-dependent manner even after 9-14 days of exposure to CMV. Thus, quantitative changes in muscle fibre size and contractile proteins are not the dominating factors underlying the dramatic decline in diaphragm muscle function in response to CMV, in contrast to earlier observations in limb muscles. The observed early loss of subsarcolemmal neuronal nitric oxide synthase activity, onset of oxidative stress, intracellular lipid accumulation and post-translational protein modifications strongly argue for significant qualitative changes in contractile proteins causing the severely impaired residual function in diaphragm fibres after long-term mechanical ventilation. For the first time, the present study demonstrates

  2. Time course analysis of mechanical ventilation-induced diaphragm contractile muscle dysfunction in the rat

    PubMed Central

    Corpeno, R; Dworkin, B; Cacciani, N; Salah, H; Bergman, H-M; Ravara, B; Vitadello, M; Gorza, L; Gustafson, A-M; Hedström, Y; Petersson, J; Feng, H-Z; Jin, J-P; Iwamoto, H; Yagi, N; Artemenko, K; Bergquist, J; Larsson, L

    2014-01-01

    Controlled mechanical ventilation (CMV) plays a key role in triggering the impaired diaphragm muscle function and the concomitant delayed weaning from the respirator in critically ill intensive care unit (ICU) patients. To date, experimental and clinical studies have primarily focused on early effects on the diaphragm by CMV, or at specific time points. To improve our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the impaired diaphragm muscle function in response to mechanical ventilation, we have performed time-resolved analyses between 6 h and 14 days using an experimental rat ICU model allowing detailed studies of the diaphragm in response to long-term CMV. A rapid and early decline in maximum muscle fibre force and preceding muscle fibre atrophy was observed in the diaphragm in response to CMV, resulting in an 85% reduction in residual diaphragm fibre function after 9–14 days of CMV. A modest loss of contractile proteins was observed and linked to an early activation of the ubiquitin proteasome pathway, myosin:actin ratios were not affected and the transcriptional regulation of myosin isoforms did not show any dramatic changes during the observation period. Furthermore, small angle X-ray diffraction analyses demonstrate that myosin can bind to actin in an ATP-dependent manner even after 9–14 days of exposure to CMV. Thus, quantitative changes in muscle fibre size and contractile proteins are not the dominating factors underlying the dramatic decline in diaphragm muscle function in response to CMV, in contrast to earlier observations in limb muscles. The observed early loss of subsarcolemmal neuronal nitric oxide synthase activity, onset of oxidative stress, intracellular lipid accumulation and post-translational protein modifications strongly argue for significant qualitative changes in contractile proteins causing the severely impaired residual function in diaphragm fibres after long-term mechanical ventilation. For the first time, the present study

  3. Controlling contractile instabilities in the actomyosin cortex

    PubMed Central

    Nishikawa, Masatoshi; Naganathan, Sundar Ram; Jülicher, Frank; Grill, Stephan W

    2017-01-01

    The actomyosin cell cortex is an active contractile material for driving cell- and tissue morphogenesis. The cortex has a tendency to form a pattern of myosin foci, which is a signature of potentially unstable behavior. How a system that is prone to such instabilities can rveliably drive morphogenesis remains an outstanding question. Here, we report that in the Caenorhabditis elegans zygote, feedback between active RhoA and myosin induces a contractile instability in the cortex. We discover that an independent RhoA pacemaking oscillator controls this instability, generating a pulsatory pattern of myosin foci and preventing the collapse of cortical material into a few dynamic contracting regions. Our work reveals how contractile instabilities that are natural to occur in mechanically active media can be biochemically controlled to robustly drive morphogenetic events. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.19595.001 PMID:28117665

  4. Prevascularization of self-organizing engineered heart tissue by human umbilical vein endothelial cells abrogates contractile performance.

    PubMed

    Sondergaard, Claus Svane; Witt, Russell; Mathews, Grant; Najibi, Skender; Le, Lisa; Clift, Tracy; Si, Ming-Sing

    2012-12-01

    Establishing vascularization is a critical obstacle to the generation of engineered heart tissue (EHT) of substantial thickness. Addition of endothelial cells to the formative stages of EHT has been demonstrated to result in prevascularization, or the formation of capillary-like structures. The detailed study of the effects of prevascularization on EHT contractile function is lacking. Here, we evaluated the functional impact of prevascularization by human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) in self-organizing EHT. EHT fibers were generated by the self-organization of neonatal rat cardiac cells on a fibrin hydrogel scaffold with or without HUVECs. Contractile function was measured and force-length relationship and rate of force production were assessed. Immunofluorescent studies were used to evaluate arrangement and distribution of HUVECs within the EHT fibers. RT-PCR was used to assess the transcript levels of hypoxia inducible factor-1a (Hif-1α). EHT with HUVECs manifested tubule-like structures at the periphery during fiber formation. After fiber formation, HUVECs were heterogeneously located throughout the EHT fiber and human CD31+ tubule-like structures were identified. The expression level of Hif-1α did not change with the addition of HUVECs. However, maximal force and rate of force generation were not improved in HUVECs containing EHT as compared to control EHT fibers. The addition of HUVECs may result in sparse microvascularization of EHT. However, this perceived benefit is overshadowed by a significant decrease in contractile function and highlights the need for perfused vascularization strategies in order to generate EHT that approaches clinically relevant dimensions.

  5. Smooth muscle adaptation and recovery of contractility after massive small bowel resection in rats.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jie; Wen, Jie; Cai, Wei

    2012-05-01

    Previous studies have suggested that massive small bowel resection (mSBR) compromises the normal intestinal processes of digestion and absorption, and requires an adaptive response to regain full function and reinstate coordinated contractile activity of the circular smooth muscle. This study was designed to investigate spontaneous contractile activity of circular smooth muscle using the mSBR rat model and to determine the functional role of M(2) and M(3) muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChR) in this process. Male Sprague-Dawley rats underwent an 80% proximal SBR or sham operation. Markers of adaptation, including villus and microvillus height, were analyzed by hematoxylin and eosin staining and transmission electron microscopy. Contractility was measured by attaching the distal ileum strips to strain gauge transducers and exposing the tissue to varying doses of the cholinergic agonist carbachol. Protein expressions of M(2)- and M(3)-mAChR in intestinal smooth muscle (ISM) were detected by Western blot. Following mSBR, the ISM showed perturbed spontaneous rhythmic contraction, irregular amplitude and slow frequency by muscle strip test. However, by two weeks after mSBR, the contractile function of circular smooth muscle was found to have returned to normal levels. Protein expression of M(2)-mAChR was down-regulated following mSBR but up-regulated during the adaptive process when contractile activity of circular smooth muscle was regained. These results indicate that smooth muscle contractility was spontaneously restored in rats following mSBR, and involved the acetylcholine receptors M(2) and M(3). Thus, the disrupted contractile response of smooth muscle in short bowel syndrome may be corrected by therapeutic intervention to restore the expressions of M(2)- and M(3)-mAChR to pre-mSBR levels.

  6. Requirements for contractility in disordered cytoskeletal bundles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lenz, Martin; Gardel, Margaret L.; Dinner, Aaron R.

    2012-03-01

    Actomyosin contractility is essential for biological force generation, and is well understood in highly organized structures such as striated muscle. Additionally, actomyosin bundles devoid of this organization are known to contract both in vivo and in vitro, which cannot be described by standard muscle models. To narrow down the search for possible contraction mechanisms in these systems, we investigate their microscopic symmetries. We show that contractile behavior requires non-identical motors that generate large-enough forces to probe the nonlinear elastic behavior of F-actin. This suggests a role for filament buckling in the contraction of these bundles, consistent with recent experimental results on reconstituted actomyosin bundles.

  7. Na+-K+ pump regulation and skeletal muscle contractility.

    PubMed

    Clausen, Torben

    2003-10-01

    In skeletal muscle, excitation may cause loss of K+, increased extracellular K+ ([K+]o), intracellular Na+ ([Na+]i), and depolarization. Since these events interfere with excitability, the processes of excitation can be self-limiting. During work, therefore, the impending loss of excitability has to be counterbalanced by prompt restoration of Na+-K+ gradients. Since this is the major function of the Na+-K+ pumps, it is crucial that their activity and capacity are adequate. This is achieved in two ways: 1) by acute activation of the Na+-K+ pumps and 2) by long-term regulation of Na+-K+ pump content or capacity. 1) Depending on frequency of stimulation, excitation may activate up to all of the Na+-K+ pumps available within 10 s, causing up to 22-fold increase in Na+ efflux. Activation of the Na+-K+ pumps by hormones is slower and less pronounced. When muscles are inhibited by high [K+]o or low [Na+]o, acute hormone- or excitation-induced activation of the Na+-K+ pumps can restore excitability and contractile force in 10-20 min. Conversely, inhibition of the Na+-K+ pumps by ouabain leads to progressive loss of contractility and endurance. 2) Na+-K+ pump content is upregulated by training, thyroid hormones, insulin, glucocorticoids, and K+ overload. Downregulation is seen during immobilization, K+ deficiency, hypoxia, heart failure, hypothyroidism, starvation, diabetes, alcoholism, myotonic dystrophy, and McArdle disease. Reduced Na+-K+ pump content leads to loss of contractility and endurance, possibly contributing to the fatigue associated with several of these conditions. Increasing excitation-induced Na+ influx by augmenting the open-time or the content of Na+ channels reduces contractile endurance. Excitability and contractility depend on the ratio between passive Na+-K+ leaks and Na+-K+ pump activity, the passive leaks often playing a dominant role. The Na+-K+ pump is a central target for regulation of Na+-K+ distribution and excitability, essential for second

  8. The CLEC-2-podoplanin axis controls the contractility of fibroblastic reticular cells and lymph node microarchitecture.

    PubMed

    Astarita, Jillian L; Cremasco, Viviana; Fu, Jianxin; Darnell, Max C; Peck, James R; Nieves-Bonilla, Janice M; Song, Kai; Kondo, Yuji; Woodruff, Matthew C; Gogineni, Alvin; Onder, Lucas; Ludewig, Burkhard; Weimer, Robby M; Carroll, Michael C; Mooney, David J; Xia, Lijun; Turley, Shannon J

    2015-01-01

    In lymph nodes, fibroblastic reticular cells (FRCs) form a collagen-based reticular network that supports migratory dendritic cells (DCs) and T cells and transports lymph. A hallmark of FRCs is their propensity to contract collagen, yet this function is poorly understood. Here we demonstrate that podoplanin (PDPN) regulates actomyosin contractility in FRCs. Under resting conditions, when FRCs are unlikely to encounter mature DCs expressing the PDPN receptor CLEC-2, PDPN endowed FRCs with contractile function and exerted tension within the reticulum. Upon inflammation, CLEC-2 on mature DCs potently attenuated PDPN-mediated contractility, which resulted in FRC relaxation and reduced tissue stiffness. Disrupting PDPN function altered the homeostasis and spacing of FRCs and T cells, which resulted in an expanded reticular network and enhanced immunity.

  9. Improvement of the circulatory function partially accounts for the neuroprotective action of the phytoestrogen genistein in experimental ischemic stroke.

    PubMed

    Cortina, Belén; Torregrosa, Germán; Castelló-Ruiz, María; Burguete, María C; Moscardó, Antonio; Latorre, Ana; Salom, Juan B; Vallés, Juana; Santos, María T; Alborch, Enrique

    2013-05-15

    We tested the hypothesis that the phytoestrogen genistein protects the brain against ischemic stroke by improving the circulatory function in terms of reduced production of thromboxane A2 and leukocyte-platelet aggregates, and of preserved vascular reactivity. Ischemia-reperfusion (90 min-3 days, intraluminal filament) was induced in male Wistar rats, and functional score and cerebral infarct volume were the end points examined. Genistein (10mg/kg/day) or vehicle (β-cyclodextrin) was administered at 30 min after ischemia or sham-operation. Production of thromboxane A2 and leukocyte-platelet aggregates, as well as reactivity of carotid artery to U-46619 (thromboxane A2 analogue) and to platelet releasate was measured. At 3 days post-ischemia, both improvement in the functional examination and reduction in the total infarct volume were shown in the ischemic genistein-treated group. Genistein significantly reverted both the increased thromboxane A2 concentration and the increased leukocyte-platelet aggregates production found in samples from the ischemic vehicle-treated group. Both U-46619 and platelet releasate elicited contractions of the carotid artery, which were significantly lower in the ischemic vehicle-treated group. Genistein significantly restored both the decreased U-46619- and the decreased platelet releasate-elicited contractile responses. In conclusion, genistein protects the brain against an ischemia-reperfusion challenge, at least in part, by its beneficial effects on the circulatory function.

  10. Parvalbumin gene transfer impairs skeletal muscle contractility in old mice.

    PubMed

    Murphy, Kate T; Ham, Daniel J; Church, Jarrod E; Naim, Timur; Trieu, Jennifer; Williams, David A; Lynch, Gordon S

    2012-08-01

    Sarcopenia is the progressive age-related loss of skeletal muscle mass associated with functional impairments that reduce mobility and quality of life. Overt muscle wasting with sarcopenia is usually preceded by a slowing of the rate of relaxation and a reduction in maximum force production. Parvalbumin (PV) is a cytosolic Ca(2+) buffer thought to facilitate relaxation in muscle. We tested the hypothesis that restoration of PV levels in muscles of old mice would increase the magnitude and hasten relaxation of submaximal and maximal force responses. The tibialis anterior (TA) muscles of young (6 month), adult (13 month), and old (26 month) C57BL/6 mice received electroporation-assisted gene transfer of plasmid encoding PV or empty plasmid (pcDNA3.1). Contractile properties of TA muscles were assessed in situ 14 days after transfer. In old mice, muscles with increased PV expression had a 40% slower rate of tetanic force development (p<0.01), and maximum twitch and tetanic force were 22% and 16% lower than control values, respectively (p<0.05). Muscles with increased PV expression from old mice had an 18% lower maximum specific (normalized) force than controls, and absolute force was `26% lower at higher stimulation frequencies (150-300 Hz, p<0.05). In contrast, there was no effect of increased PV expression on TA muscle contractile properties in young and adult mice. The impairments in skeletal muscle function in old mice argue against PV overexpression as a therapeutic strategy for ameliorating aspects of contractile dysfunction with sarcopenia and help clarify directions for therapeutic interventions for age-related changes in skeletal muscle structure and function.

  11. Functional Improvement and Regression of Medial Hypertrophy in the Remodeled Pulmonary Artery after Correction of Systemic Left-to-Right Shunt.

    PubMed

    Hsu, Chih-Hsin; Roan, Jun-Neng; Chen, Jyh-Hong; Lam, Chen-Fuh

    2016-11-25

    The presence of systemic left-to-right shunt and increased pulmonary blood flow can result in right heart failure and pulmonary arteriopathy. Correction of left-to-right shunt has been shown to improve cardiac function and physical performance. However, the cardiopulmonary remodeling processes following cessation of left-to-right shunt have yet to be reported. In this experimental study, excessive pulmonary flow was restored through ligation of the aortocaval fistula in rats with flow-induced pulmonary hypertension. The cardiopulmonary morphometric functions were assessed, and phenotypic switching of pulmonary vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC) was determined. Ligation of aortocaval fistula significantly attenuated pulmonary blood flow and right ventricular mass, and potentiated the isometric contraction of pulmonary artery. Inflammatory cytokines IL-1β and IL-6 were reduced in the lung after ligation. Reduction of pulmonary blood flow restored the expressions of smooth muscle myosin heavy chain and α-smooth muscle actin in pulmonary artery, indicating the switching of VSMCs to the contractile phenotype. Our study demonstrated that normalization of pulmonary blood flow in flow-induced pulmonary hypertension reverses the remodeling in the right ventricle and pulmonary artery. The remodeling process of flow-induced pulmonary hypertension is functionally and morphometrically reversible by inducing transdifferentiation of pulmonary VSMC to contractile phenotypes and modulation of tissue inflammatory cytokines.

  12. Functional Improvement and Regression of Medial Hypertrophy in the Remodeled Pulmonary Artery after Correction of Systemic Left-to-Right Shunt

    PubMed Central

    Hsu, Chih-Hsin; Roan, Jun-Neng; Chen, Jyh-Hong; Lam, Chen-Fuh

    2016-01-01

    The presence of systemic left-to-right shunt and increased pulmonary blood flow can result in right heart failure and pulmonary arteriopathy. Correction of left-to-right shunt has been shown to improve cardiac function and physical performance. However, the cardiopulmonary remodeling processes following cessation of left-to-right shunt have yet to be reported. In this experimental study, excessive pulmonary flow was restored through ligation of the aortocaval fistula in rats with flow-induced pulmonary hypertension. The cardiopulmonary morphometric functions were assessed, and phenotypic switching of pulmonary vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC) was determined. Ligation of aortocaval fistula significantly attenuated pulmonary blood flow and right ventricular mass, and potentiated the isometric contraction of pulmonary artery. Inflammatory cytokines IL-1β and IL-6 were reduced in the lung after ligation. Reduction of pulmonary blood flow restored the expressions of smooth muscle myosin heavy chain and α-smooth muscle actin in pulmonary artery, indicating the switching of VSMCs to the contractile phenotype. Our study demonstrated that normalization of pulmonary blood flow in flow-induced pulmonary hypertension reverses the remodeling in the right ventricle and pulmonary artery. The remodeling process of flow-induced pulmonary hypertension is functionally and morphometrically reversible by inducing transdifferentiation of pulmonary VSMC to contractile phenotypes and modulation of tissue inflammatory cytokines. PMID:27886226

  13. Architecture and Connectivity Govern Actin Network Contractility.

    PubMed

    Ennomani, Hajer; Letort, Gaëlle; Guérin, Christophe; Martiel, Jean-Louis; Cao, Wenxiang; Nédélec, François; De La Cruz, Enrique M; Théry, Manuel; Blanchoin, Laurent

    2016-03-07

    Actomyosin contractility plays a central role in a wide range of cellular processes, including the establishment of cell polarity, cell migration, tissue integrity, and morphogenesis during development. The contractile response is variable and depends on actomyosin network architecture and biochemical composition. To determine how this coupling regulates actomyosin-driven contraction, we used a micropatterning method that enables the spatial control of actin assembly. We generated a variety of actin templates and measured how defined actin structures respond to myosin-induced forces. We found that the same actin filament crosslinkers either enhance or inhibit the contractility of a network, depending on the organization of actin within the network. Numerical simulations unified the roles of actin filament branching and crosslinking during actomyosin contraction. Specifically, we introduce the concept of "network connectivity" and show that the contractions of distinct actin architectures are described by the same master curve when considering their degree of connectivity. This makes it possible to predict the dynamic response of defined actin structures to transient changes in connectivity. We propose that, depending on the connectivity and the architecture, network contraction is dominated by either sarcomeric-like or buckling mechanisms. More generally, this study reveals how actin network contractility depends on its architecture under a defined set of biochemical conditions.

  14. Improving Density Functionals with Quantum Harmonic Oscillators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkatchenko, Alexandre

    2013-03-01

    Density functional theory (DFT) is the most widely used and successful approach for electronic structure calculations. However, one of the pressing challenges for DFT is developing efficient functionals that can accurately capture the omnipresent long-range electron correlations, which determine the structure and stability of many molecules and materials. Here we show that, under certain conditions, the problem of computing the long-range correlation energy of interacting electrons can be mapped to a system of coupled quantum harmonic oscillators (QHOs). The proposed model allows us to synergistically combine concepts from DFT, quantum chemistry, and the widely discussed random-phase approximation for the correlation energy. In the dipole limit, the interaction energy for a system of coupled QHOs can be calculated exactly, thereby leading to an efficient and accurate model for the many-body dispersion energy of complex molecules and materials. The studied examples include intermolecular binding energies, the conformational hierarchy of DNA structures, the geometry and stability of molecular crystals, and supramolecular host-guest complexes (A. Tkatchenko, R. A. DiStasio Jr., R. Car, M. Scheffler, Phys. Rev. Lett. 108, 236402 (2012); R. A. DiStasio Jr., A. von Lilienfeld, A. Tkatchenko, PNAS 109, 14791 (2012); A. Tkatchenko, D. Alfe, K. S. Kim, J. Chem. Theory and Comp. (2012), doi: 10.1021/ct300711r; A. Tkatchenko, A. Ambrosetti, R. A. DiStasio Jr., arXiv:1210.8343v1).

  15. Regulation of the uterine contractile apparatus and cytoskeleton

    PubMed Central

    Morgan, Kathleen G

    2007-01-01

    Parturition at term, the end stage of a successful pregnancy occurs as a result of powerful, co-ordinated and periodic contractions of uterine smooth muscle (myometrium). To occur in a propitious manner, a high degree of control over the activation of a myometrial cell is required. We review the molecular mechanisms and structural composition of myometrial cells that may contribute to their increased contractile capacity at term. We focus attention on pathways that lead to the activation of filamentous networks traditionally labeled ‘contractile’ or ‘cytoskeletal’ yet draw attention to the fact that functional discrimination between these systems is not absolute. PMID:17582796

  16. Improved association in a classical density functional theory for water

    SciTech Connect

    Krebs, Eric J.; Schulte, Jeff B.; Roundy, David

    2014-03-28

    We present a modification to our recently published statistical associating fluid theory-based classical density functional theory for water. We have recently developed and tested a functional for the averaged radial distribution function at contact of the hard-sphere fluid that is dramatically more accurate at interfaces than earlier approximations. We now incorporate this improved functional into the association term of our free energy functional for water, improving its description of hydrogen bonding. We examine the effect of this improvement by studying two hard solutes (a hard hydrophobic rod and a hard sphere) and a Lennard-Jones approximation of a krypton atom solute. The improved functional leads to a moderate change in the density profile and a large decrease in the number of hydrogen bonds broken in the vicinity of the hard solutes. We find an improvement of the partial radial distribution for a krypton atom in water when compared with experiment.

  17. Cholesterol Depletion Alters Cardiomyocyte Subcellular Signaling and Increases Contractility

    PubMed Central

    McIntosh, Victoria J.; Abou Samra, Abdul B.; Mohammad, Ramzi M.; Lasley, Robert D.

    2016-01-01

    Membrane cholesterol levels play an important factor in regulating cell function. Sarcolemmal cholesterol is concentrated in lipid rafts and caveolae, which are flask-shaped invaginations of the plasma membrane. The scaffolding protein caveolin permits the enrichment of cholesterol in caveolae, and caveolin interactions with numerous proteins regulate their function. The purpose of this study was to determine whether acute reductions in cardiomyocyte cholesterol levels alter subcellular protein kinase activation, intracellular Ca2+ and contractility. Methods: Ventricular myocytes, isolated from adult Sprague Dawley rats, were treated with the cholesterol reducing agent methyl-β-cyclodextrin (MβCD, 5 mM, 1 hr, room temperature). Total cellular cholesterol levels, caveolin-3 localization, subcellular, ERK and p38 mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling, contractility, and [Ca2+]i were assessed. Results: Treatment with MβCD reduced cholesterol levels by ~45 and shifted caveolin-3 from cytoskeleton and triton-insoluble fractions to the triton-soluble fraction, and increased ERK isoform phosphorylation in cytoskeletal, cytosolic, triton-soluble and triton-insoluble membrane fractions without altering their subcellular distributions. In contrast the primary effect of MβCD was on p38 subcellular distribution of p38α with little effect on p38 phosphorylation. Cholesterol depletion increased cardiomyocyte twitch amplitude and the rates of shortening and relaxation in conjunction with increased diastolic and systolic [Ca2+]i. Conclusions: These results indicate that acute reductions in membrane cholesterol levels differentially modulate basal cardiomyocyte subcellular MAPK signaling, as well as increasing [Ca2+]i and contractility. PMID:27441649

  18. The contractile process in the ciliate, Stentor coeruleus. I. The role of microtubules and filaments.

    PubMed

    Huang, B; Pitelka, D R

    1973-06-01

    The structural basis for the function of microtubules and filaments in cell body contractility in the ciliate Stentor coeruleus was investigated. Cells in the extended state were obtained for ultrastructural analysis by treatment before fixation with a solution containing 10 mM EGTA, 50-80 mM Tris, 3 mM MgSO(4), 7.5 mM NH(4)Cl, 10 mM phosphate buffer (pH 7.1). The response of Stentor to changes in the divalent cation concentrations in this solution suggests that Ca(+2) and Mg(+2) are physiologically important in the regulation of ciliate contractility. The generation of motive force for changes in cell length in Stentor resides in two distinct longitudinal cortical fiber systems, the km fibers and myonemes. Cyclic changes in cell length are associated with (a) the relative sliding of parallel, overlapping microtubule ribbons in the km fibers, and (b) a distinct alteration in the structure of the contractile filaments constituting the myonemes. The microtubule and filament systems are distinguished functionally as antagonistic contractile elements. The development of motive force for cell extension is accomplished by active microtubule-to-microtubule sliding generated by specific intertubule bridges. Evidence is presented which suggests that active shortening of contractile filaments, reflected in a reversible structural transformation of dense 4-nm filaments to tubular 10-12-nm filaments, provides the basis for rapid cell contraction.

  19. Interactions between endothelin-1 and atrial natriuretic peptide influence cultured chick cardiac myocyte contractility.

    PubMed

    Bézie, Y; Mesnard, L; Longrois, D; Samson, F; Perret, C; Mercadier, J J; Laurent, S

    1996-09-12

    We have previously shown that rat atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) reduces the contractility of cultured, spontaneously beating chick embryo ventricular cells, an effect opposite to that of endothelin-1. Endothelin-1 has been described as a secretagogue for natriuretic peptides in vitro and in vivo. Natriuretic peptides can inhibit endothelin-1 secretion from cultured endothelial cells, suggesting a negative feedback mechanism between endothelial cells and cardiomyocytes. The aim of this study was to determine whether ANP attenuated the endothelin-1-induced increase in myocyte contractility. Using a video-microscopy system we studied the contractility of isolated cultured chick ventricular myocytes in response to endothelin-1, chicken natriuretic peptide (ChNP), and both. We also used Northern blot analysis to study the time course of ChNP expression in response to endothelin-1. Endothelin-1 (10(-8) M) increased chick cardiomyocyte contractility by 20-25% between 5 and 15 min (P < 0.05). Although ChNP (3 x 10(-7) M) did not significantly change the amplitude of contraction in basal conditions, it prevented the endothelin-1-induced increase in contractility (P < 0.05) when perfused prior to endothelin-1, and reversed it when perfused 5 min after endothelin-1 exposure (P < 0.05). Endothelin-1 significantly increased the accumulation of ChNP mRNA in chick ventricular myocytes as early as the 30 min after exposure (P < 0.05), with a maximal effect after 2 h of stimulation (P < 0.01); no effect was observed after 4 h. These data support an interaction between endothelin-1 and natriuretic peptides as autocrine/paracrine factors regulating the contractile function of chick cardiac myocytes, as well as their antagonistic effects on cardiac cell contractility. The early and transient expression of ChNP mRNA in response to endothelin-1 may be involved in this interaction.

  20. Acoustic tweezing cytometry for live-cell subcellular modulation of intracellular cytoskeleton contractility

    PubMed Central

    Fan, Zhenzhen; Sun, Yubing; Di Chen; Tay, Donald; Chen, Weiqiang; Deng, Cheri X.; Fu, Jianping

    2013-01-01

    Mechanical forces are critical to modulate cell spreading, contractility, gene expression, and even stem cell differentiation. Yet, existing tools that can apply controllable subcellular forces to a large number of single cells simultaneously are still limited. Here we report a novel ultrasound tweezing cytometry utilizing ultrasound pulses to actuate functionalized lipid microbubbles covalently attached to single live cells to exert mechanical forces in the pN - nN range. Ultrasonic excitation of microbubbles could elicit a rapid and sustained reactive intracellular cytoskeleton contractile force increase in different adherent mechanosensitive cells. Further, ultrasound-mediated intracellular cytoskeleton contractility enhancement was dose-dependent and required an intact actin cytoskeleton as well as RhoA/ROCK signaling. Our results demonstrated the great potential of ultrasound tweezing cytometry technique using functionalized microbubbles as an actuatable, biocompatible, and multifunctional agent for biomechanical stimulations of cells. PMID:23846290

  1. Vascular endothelial function is improved by oral glycine treatment in aged rats.

    PubMed

    Gómez-Zamudio, Jaime H; García-Macedo, Rebeca; Lázaro-Suárez, Martha; Ibarra-Barajas, Maximiliano; Kumate, Jesús; Cruz, Miguel

    2015-06-01

    Glycine has been used to reduce oxidative stress and proinflammatory mediators in some metabolic disorders; however, its effect on the vasculature has been poorly studied. The aim of this work was to explore the effect of glycine on endothelial dysfunction in aged rats. Aortic rings with intact or denuded endothelium were obtained from untreated or glycine-treated male Sprague-Dawley rats at 5 and 15 months of age. Concentration-response curves to phenylephrine (PHE) were obtained from aortic rings incubated with N(G)-nitro-l-arginine methyl ester (l-NAME), superoxide dismutase (SOD), indomethacin, SC-560, and NS-398. Aortic mRNA expression of endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS), NADPH oxidase 4 (NOX-4), cyclooxygenase 1 (COX-1), cyclooxygenase 2 (COX-2), tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α, and interleukin-1 β was measured by real time RT-PCR. The endothelial modulation of the contraction by PHE was decreased in aortic rings from aged rats. Glycine treatment improved this modulator effect and increased relaxation to acetylcholine. Glycine augmented the sensitivity for PHE in the presence of l-NAME and SOD. It also reduced the contraction by incubation with indomethacin, SC-560, and NS-398. Glycine increased the mRNA expression of eNOS and decreased the expression of COX-2 and TNF-α. Glycine improved the endothelium function in aged rats possibly by enhancing eNOS expression and reducing the role of superoxide anion and contractile prostanoids that increase the nitric oxide bioavailability.

  2. Nanosecond pulsed platelet-rich plasma (nsPRP) improves mechanical and electrical cardiac function following myocardial reperfusion injury.

    PubMed

    Hargrave, Barbara; Varghese, Frency; Barabutis, Nektarios; Catravas, John; Zemlin, Christian

    2016-02-01

    Ischemia and reperfusion (I/R) of the heart is associated with biochemical and ionic changes that result in cardiac contractile and electrical dysfunction. In rabbits, platelet-rich plasma activated using nanosecond pulsed electric fields (nsPRP) has been shown to improve left ventricular pumping. Here, we demonstrate that nsPRP causes a similar improvement in mouse left ventricular function. We also show that nsPRP injection recovers electrical activity even before reperfusion begins. To uncover the mechanism of nsPRP action, we studied whether the enhanced left ventricular function in nsPRP rabbit and mouse hearts was associated with increased expression of heat-shock proteins and altered mitochondrial function under conditions of oxidative stress. Mouse hearts underwent 30 min of global ischemia and 1 h of reperfusion in situ. Rabbit hearts underwent 30 min of ischemia in vivo and were reperfused for 14 days. Hearts treated with nsPRP expressed significantly higher levels of Hsp27 and Hsp70 compared to hearts treated with vehicle. Also, pretreatment of cultured H9c2 cells with nsPRP significantly enhanced the "spare respiratory capacity (SRC)" also referred to as "respiratory reserve capacity" and ATP production in response to the uncoupler FCCP. These results suggest a cardioprotective effect of nsPRP on the ischemic heart during reperfusion.

  3. Improved functional vasodilation in obese Zucker rats following exercise training.

    PubMed

    Sebai, Mohamad; Lu, Silu; Xiang, Lusha; Hester, Robert L

    2011-09-01

    Obese individuals exhibit impaired functional vasodilation and exercise performance. We have demonstrated in obese Zucker rats (OZ), a model of morbid obesity, that insulin resistance impairs functional vasodilation via an increased thromboxane receptor (TP)-mediated vasoconstriction. Chronic treadmill exercise training improves functional vasodilation in the spinotrapezius muscle of the OZ, but the mechanisms responsible for the improvement in functional vasodilation are not clear. Based on evidence that exercise training improves insulin resistance, we hypothesized that, in the OZ, exercise training increases functional vasodilation and exercise capability due to decreases TP-mediated vasoconstriction associated with improved insulin sensitivity. Six-week-old lean Zucker rats (LZ) and OZ were exercised on a treadmill (24 m/min, 30 min/day, 5 days/wk) for 6 wk. An oral glucose tolerance test was performed at the end of the training period. We measured functional vasodilation in both exercise trained (spinotrapezius) and nonexercise trained (cremaster) muscles to determine whether the improved functional vasodilation following exercise training in OZ is due to a systemic improved insulin resistance. Compared with LZ, the sedentary OZ exhibited impairments in glucose tolerance and functional vasodilation in both muscles. The TP antagonist SQ-29548 improved the vasodilator responses in the sedentary OZ with no effect in the LZ. Exercising training of the LZ increased the functional vasodilation in spinotrapezius muscle, with no effect in the cremaster muscle. Exercising training of the OZ improved glucose tolerance, along with increased functional vasodilation, in both the spinotrapezius and cremaster muscles. SQ-29548 treatment had no effect on the vasodilator responses in either cremaster or spinotrapezius muscles of the exercise-trained OZ. These results suggest that, in the OZ, there is a global effect of exercising training to improve insulin resistance and

  4. Peripheral Sweat Gland Function Improves With Humid Heat Acclimation

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2009-04-01

    Individual variations in structure and function of human eccrine sweat gland . Am. j. Physio!. 245, R203-R208. strydom, N.B .. Wyndham, e.H., Williams, e.G...Naval Health Research Center Peripheral Sweat Gland Function Improves With Humid Heat Acclimation . M. J. Buono S. L. Martha...Biology E!.SFVILR journal homepage: www.elsevier.com/locate/jtherbio Peripheral sweat gland function is improved with humid heat acclimation Michael

  5. Pentamidine rescues contractility and rhythmicity in a Drosophila model of myotonic dystrophy heart dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Chakraborty, Mouli; Selma-Soriano, Estela; Magny, Emile; Couso, Juan Pablo; Pérez-Alonso, Manuel; Charlet-Berguerand, Nicolas; Artero, Ruben; Llamusi, Beatriz

    2015-12-01

    Up to 80% of individuals with myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1) will develop cardiac abnormalities at some point during the progression of their disease, the most common of which is heart blockage of varying degrees. Such blockage is characterized by conduction defects and supraventricular and ventricular tachycardia, and carries a high risk of sudden cardiac death. Despite its importance, very few animal model studies have focused on the heart dysfunction in DM1. Here, we describe the characterization of the heart phenotype in a Drosophila model expressing pure expanded CUG repeats under the control of the cardiomyocyte-specific driver GMH5-Gal4. Morphologically, expression of 250 CUG repeats caused abnormalities in the parallel alignment of the spiral myofibrils in dissected fly hearts, as revealed by phalloidin staining. Moreover, combined immunofluorescence and in situ hybridization of Muscleblind and CUG repeats, respectively, confirmed detectable ribonuclear foci and Muscleblind sequestration, characteristic features of DM1, exclusively in flies expressing the expanded CTG repeats. Similarly to what has been reported in humans with DM1, heart-specific expression of toxic RNA resulted in reduced survival, increased arrhythmia, altered diastolic and systolic function, reduced heart tube diameters and reduced contractility in the model flies. As a proof of concept that the fly heart model can be used for in vivo testing of promising therapeutic compounds, we fed flies with pentamidine, a compound previously described to improve DM1 phenotypes. Pentamidine not only released Muscleblind from the CUG RNA repeats and reduced ribonuclear formation in the Drosophila heart, but also rescued heart arrhythmicity and contractility, and improved fly survival in animals expressing 250 CUG repeats.

  6. Pentamidine rescues contractility and rhythmicity in a Drosophila model of myotonic dystrophy heart dysfunction

    PubMed Central

    Chakraborty, Mouli; Selma-Soriano, Estela; Magny, Emile; Couso, Juan Pablo; Pérez-Alonso, Manuel; Charlet-Berguerand, Nicolas; Artero, Ruben; Llamusi, Beatriz

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Up to 80% of individuals with myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1) will develop cardiac abnormalities at some point during the progression of their disease, the most common of which is heart blockage of varying degrees. Such blockage is characterized by conduction defects and supraventricular and ventricular tachycardia, and carries a high risk of sudden cardiac death. Despite its importance, very few animal model studies have focused on the heart dysfunction in DM1. Here, we describe the characterization of the heart phenotype in a Drosophila model expressing pure expanded CUG repeats under the control of the cardiomyocyte-specific driver GMH5-Gal4. Morphologically, expression of 250 CUG repeats caused abnormalities in the parallel alignment of the spiral myofibrils in dissected fly hearts, as revealed by phalloidin staining. Moreover, combined immunofluorescence and in situ hybridization of Muscleblind and CUG repeats, respectively, confirmed detectable ribonuclear foci and Muscleblind sequestration, characteristic features of DM1, exclusively in flies expressing the expanded CTG repeats. Similarly to what has been reported in humans with DM1, heart-specific expression of toxic RNA resulted in reduced survival, increased arrhythmia, altered diastolic and systolic function, reduced heart tube diameters and reduced contractility in the model flies. As a proof of concept that the fly heart model can be used for in vivo testing of promising therapeutic compounds, we fed flies with pentamidine, a compound previously described to improve DM1 phenotypes. Pentamidine not only released Muscleblind from the CUG RNA repeats and reduced ribonuclear formation in the Drosophila heart, but also rescued heart arrhythmicity and contractility, and improved fly survival in animals expressing 250 CUG repeats. PMID:26515653

  7. Does repair of pectus excavatum improve cardiopulmonary function?

    PubMed

    Jayaramakrishnan, Kumara; Wotton, Robin; Bradley, Amy; Naidu, Babu

    2013-06-01

    A best evidence topic was written according to a structured protocol. The question addressed was 'Does repair of pectus excavatum (PE) improve cardiopulmonary function?' One hundred and sixty-eight papers were found using the reported search, 19 level III evidence papers and three meta-analyses were relevant. Studies were divided into four groups based on the surgical technique applied and pulmonary and cardiac functions in these groups were analysed. The meta-analyses show conflicting results for improvements in pulmonary and cardiac functions when comparing surgical techniques, while four more recent studies show improved long-term results using the Nuss technique. The best evidence of papers studying the PE repair using the minimally invasive Nuss technique demonstrates a decrease in pulmonary function during the early postoperative period, however, there is a small but significant improvement during the late postoperative period and after bar removal. The best evidence for cardiac function in this group suggests an early improvement that is sustained during further follow-up. The best evidence of papers studying the PE repair using the Ravitch technique shows that pulmonary function decreased during the early postoperative period, however, there is a small but significant improvement during the late postoperative period. The best evidence for cardiac function in this group suggests an early improvement that is sustained during further follow-up. The best evidence of papers studying the PE repair using other techniques (modified Daniel's technique, modified Baronofsky's technique, sterno-costal turn-over technique and sterno-costal elevation technique) or where surgical techniques used were not described (preceding year 1985) suggests that there is no improvement in pulmonary function after surgery. There is some evidence that certain aspects of cardiac function improved after surgery in this group.

  8. Engineering of Three-Dimensional Microenvironments to Promote Contractile Behavior in Primary Intestinal Organoids

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Kelley S.; Dewi, Ruby; Kuo, Calvin J.; Heilshorn, Sarah C.

    2014-01-01

    intestinal organoid functionality. As peristaltic contractility is a crucial requirement for normal digestive tract function, this achievement of reproducible organoid contraction marks a pivotal advancement towards engineering physiologically functional replacement tissue constructs. PMID:24343706

  9. Engineering of three-dimensional microenvironments to promote contractile behavior in primary intestinal organoids.

    PubMed

    DiMarco, Rebecca L; Su, James; Yan, Kelley S; Dewi, Ruby; Kuo, Calvin J; Heilshorn, Sarah C

    2014-02-01

    organoid functionality. As peristaltic contractility is a crucial requirement for normal digestive tract function, this achievement of reproducible organoid contraction marks a pivotal advancement towards engineering physiologically functional replacement tissue constructs.

  10. Global Intracoronary Infusion of Allogeneic Cardiosphere-Derived Cells Improves Ventricular Function and Stimulates Endogenous Myocyte Regeneration throughout the Heart in Swine with Hibernating Myocardium

    PubMed Central

    Suzuki, Gen; Weil, Brian R.; Leiker, Merced M.; Ribbeck, Amanda E.; Young, Rebeccah F.; Cimato, Thomas R.; Canty, John M.

    2014-01-01

    Background Cardiosphere-derived cells (CDCs) improve ventricular function and reduce fibrotic volume when administered via an infarct-related artery using the “stop-flow” technique. Unfortunately, myocyte loss and dysfunction occur globally in many patients with ischemic and non-ischemic cardiomyopathy, necessitating an approach to distribute CDCs throughout the entire heart. We therefore determined whether global intracoronary infusion of CDCs under continuous flow improves contractile function and stimulates new myocyte formation. Methods and Results Swine with hibernating myocardium from a chronic LAD occlusion were studied 3-months after instrumentation (n = 25). CDCs isolated from myocardial biopsies were infused into each major coronary artery (∼33×106 icCDCs). Global icCDC infusion was safe and while ∼3% of injected CDCs were retained, they did not affect ventricular function or myocyte proliferation in normal animals. In contrast, four-weeks after icCDCs were administered to animals with hibernating myocardium, %LADWT increased from 23±6 to 51±5% (p<0.01). In diseased hearts, myocyte proliferation (phospho-histone-H3) increased in hibernating and remote regions with a concomitant increase in myocyte nuclear density. These effects were accompanied by reductions in myocyte diameter consistent with new myocyte formation. Only rare myocytes arose from sex-mismatched donor CDCs. Conclusions Global icCDC infusion under continuous flow is feasible and improves contractile function, regresses myocyte cellular hypertrophy and increases myocyte proliferation in diseased but not normal hearts. New myocytes arising via differentiation of injected cells are rare, implicating stimulation of endogenous myocyte regeneration as the primary mechanism of repair. PMID:25402428

  11. Scientific Benchmarks for Guiding Macromolecular Energy Function Improvement

    PubMed Central

    Leaver-Fay, Andrew; O’Meara, Matthew J.; Tyka, Mike; Jacak, Ron; Song, Yifan; Kellogg, Elizabeth H.; Thompson, James; Davis, Ian W.; Pache, Roland A.; Lyskov, Sergey; Gray, Jeffrey J.; Kortemme, Tanja; Richardson, Jane S.; Havranek, James J.; Snoeyink, Jack; Baker, David; Kuhlman, Brian

    2013-01-01

    Accurate energy functions are critical to macromolecular modeling and design. We describe new tools for identifying inaccuracies in energy functions and guiding their improvement, and illustrate the application of these tools to improvement of the Rosetta energy function. The feature analysis tool identifies discrepancies between structures deposited in the PDB and low energy structures generated by Rosetta; these likely arise from inaccuracies in the energy function. The optE tool optimizes the weights on the different components of the energy function by maximizing the recapitulation of a wide range of experimental observations. We use the tools to examine three proposed modifications to the Rosetta energy function: improving the unfolded state energy model (reference energies), using bicubic spline interpolation to generate knowledge based torisonal potentials, and incorporating the recently developed Dunbrack 2010 rotamer library (Shapovalov and Dunbrack, 2011). PMID:23422428

  12. Myocardial Adeno-Associated Virus Serotype 6–βARKct Gene Therapy Improves Cardiac Function and Normalizes the Neurohormonal Axis in Chronic Heart Failure

    PubMed Central

    Rengo, Giuseppe; Lymperopoulos, Anastasios; Zincarelli, Carmela; Donniacuo, Maria; Soltys, Stephen; Rabinowitz, Joseph E.; Koch, Walter J.

    2009-01-01

    Background The upregulation of G protein–coupled receptor kinase 2 in failing myocardium appears to contribute to dysfunctional β-adrenergic receptor (βAR) signaling and cardiac function. The peptide βARKct, which can inhibit the activation of G protein–coupled receptor kinase 2 and improve βAR signaling, has been shown in transgenic models and short-term gene transfer experiments to rescue heart failure (HF). This study was designed to evaluate long-term βARKct expression in HF with the use of stable myocardial gene delivery with adeno-associated virus serotype 6 (AAV6). Methods and Results In HF rats, we delivered βARKct or green fluorescent protein as a control via AAV6-mediated direct intramyocardial injection. We also treated groups with concurrent administration of the β-blocker metoprolol. We found robust and long-term transgene expression in the left ventricle at least 12 weeks after delivery. βARKct significantly improved cardiac contractility and reversed left ventricular remodeling, which was accompanied by a normalization of the neurohormonal (catecholamines and aldosterone) status of the chronic HF animals, including normalization of cardiac βAR signaling. Addition of metoprolol neither enhanced nor decreased βARKct-mediated beneficial effects, although metoprolol alone, despite not improving contractility, prevented further deterioration of the left ventricle. Conclusions Long-term cardiac AAV6-βARKct gene therapy in HF results in sustained improvement of global cardiac function and reversal of remodeling at least in part as a result of a normalization of the neurohormonal signaling axis. In addition, βARKct alone improves outcomes more than a β-blocker alone, whereas both treatments are compatible. These findings show that βARKct gene therapy can be of long-term therapeutic value in HF. PMID:19103992

  13. [Comparative assessment of contractility of different sections of the intestine (an experimental study)].

    PubMed

    Loran, O B; Kirpatovskiĭ, V I; Mudraia, I S; Zaĭtsev, A V; David'iants, A A

    1998-01-01

    Contractility of different portions of the intestine used for partial or complete replacement of the bladder was studied on the circular fragments of non-inbred rats' intestine. The contractility was studied at rest, in response to electric stimulation, addition to the solution of growing concentrations of cholinomimetic or adrenomimetic drugs, to depolarization of smooth cell membrane with hypersodium solution. It was established that contractility of the large intestine contrary to that of the small intestine is characterized by diminished amplitude of spontaneous contractions. In addition of cholino- and adrenomimetics, amplitude of the phasic and tonic reactions in the large intestine fragments compared to those of the small one was decreased. The conclusion was made that the large intestine is preferable for taking transplants partially replacing urinary bladder to correct its reservoir function whereas small intestinal grafts are more suitable for total replacement of the detrusor.

  14. Elastomeric contractile actuators for hand rehabilitation splints

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carpi, Federico; Mannini, Andrea; De Rossi, Danilo

    2008-03-01

    The significant electromechanical performances typically shown by dielectric elastomer actuators make this polymer technology particularly attractive for possible active orthoses for rehabilitation. Folded contractile actuators made of dielectric elastomers were recently described as a simple configuration, suitable to easily implement linear contractile devices. This paper describes an application of folded actuators for so-called hand splints: they consist of orthotic systems for hand rehabilitation. The dynamic versions of the state-of-the-art splints typically include elastic bands, which exert a passive elastic resistance to voluntary elongations of one or more fingers. In order to provide such splints with the possibility of electrically modulating the compliance of the resistive elements, the substitution of the passive elastic bands with the contractile actuators is here described. The electrical activation of the actuators is used to vary the compliance of the system; this enables modulations of the force that acts as an antagonist to voluntary finger movements, according to programmable rehabilitation exercises. The paper reports results obtained from the first prototype implementations of such a type of system.

  15. Prolonged exposure of rat aorta to low levels of endotoxin in vitro results in impaired contractility. Association with vascular cytokine release.

    PubMed Central

    McKenna, T M

    1990-01-01

    Treatment of volunteers or animals with endotoxin in vivo results in reduced vascular reactivity to catecholamines. Endotoxin also causes liberation of the vasoactive cytokines interleukin-1 (IL-1) and tumor necrosis factor (TNF) from vascular smooth muscle and endothelial cells in culture. This study tested whether defects in contractility could be induced in isolated vascular tissue by prolonged exposure to endotoxin (1-100 ng/ml) in vitro, and whether IL-1 and TNF release by blood vessels is altered during the establishment of endotoxin induced contractile dysfunction. A concentration of endotoxin as low as 1 ng/ml suppressed contractions to norepinephrine (NE) and KCl; aortic sensitivity to NE also decreased. The presence of serum constituents or an intact endothelium were not necessary for endotoxin-induced vascular suppression. Aortas incubated with endotoxin liberated IL-1 and TNF in a dose-dependent fashion. The addition of dexamethasone or indomethacin during the incubations generally suppressed release of the cytokines and improved tissue reactivity to NE. The endotoxin-induced diminished vascular contraction and augmented IL-1 and TNF liberation required de novo protein synthesis; tissue incubated with endotoxin plus actinomycin D was completely shielded from the influence of endotoxin on vascular reactivity to NE. The association between endotoxin-induced vascular cytokine release and diminished contraction suggests a possible role for cytokines derived from the vasculature in the regulation of contractile function. Images PMID:2365814

  16. Store-operated Ca(2+) entry (SOCE) contributes to normal skeletal muscle contractility in young but not in aged skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Thornton, Angela M; Zhao, Xiaoli; Weisleder, Noah; Brotto, Leticia S; Bougoin, Sylvain; Nosek, Thomas M; Reid, Michael; Hardin, Brian; Pan, Zui; Ma, Jianjie; Parness, Jerome; Brotto, Marco

    2011-06-01

    Muscle atrophy alone is insufficient to explain the significant decline in contractile force of skeletal muscle during normal aging. One contributing factor to decreased contractile force in aging skeletal muscle could be compromised excitation-contraction (E-C) coupling, without sufficient available Ca(2+) to allow for repetitive muscle contractility, skeletal muscles naturally become weaker. Using biophysical approaches, we previously showed that store-operated Ca(2+) entry (SOCE) is compromised in aged skeletal muscle but not in young ones. While important, a missing component from previous studies is whether or not SOCE function correlates with contractile function during aging. Here we test the contribution of extracellular Ca(2+) to contractile function of skeletal muscle during aging. First, we demonstrate graded coupling between SR Ca(2+) release channel-mediated Ca(2+) release and activation of SOCE. Inhibition of SOCE produced significant reduction of contractile force in young skeletal muscle, particularly at high frequency stimulation, and such effects were completely absent in aged skeletal muscle. Our data indicate that SOCE contributes to the normal physiological contractile response of young healthy skeletal muscle and that defective extracellular Ca(2+) entry through SOCE contributes to the reduced contractile force characteristic of aged skeletal muscle.

  17. Store-Operated Ca2+ Entry (SOCE) Contributes to Normal Skeletal Muscle Contractility in young but not in aged skeletal muscle

    PubMed Central

    Brotto, Leticia S.; Bougoin, Sylvain; Nosek, Thomas M.; Reid, Michael; Hardin, Brian; Pan, Zui; Ma, Jianjie; Parness, Jerome

    2011-01-01

    Muscle atrophy alone is insufficient to explain the significant decline in contractile force of skeletal muscle during normal aging. One contributing factor to decreased contractile force in aging skeletal muscle could be compromised excitation-contraction (E-C) coupling, without sufficient available Ca2+ to allow for repetitive muscle contractility, skeletal muscles naturally become weaker. Using biophysical approaches, we previously showed that store-operated Ca2+ entry (SOCE) is compromised in aged skeletal muscle but not in young ones. While important, a missing component from previous studies is whether or not SOCE function correlates with contractile function during aging. Here we test the contribution of extracellular Ca2+ to contractile function of skeletal muscle during aging. First, we demonstrate graded coupling between SR Ca2+ release channel-mediated Ca2+ release and activation of SOCE. Inhibition of SOCE produced significant reduction of contractile force in young skeletal muscle, particularly at high frequency stimulation, and such effects were completely absent in aged skeletal muscle. Our data indicate that SOCE contributes to the normal physiological contractile response of young healthy skeletal muscle and that defective extracellular Ca2+ entry through SOCE contributes to the reduced contractile force characteristic of aged skeletal muscle. PMID:21666285

  18. Improving structure-based function prediction using molecular dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Glazer, Dariya S.; Radmer, Randall J.; Altman, Russ B.

    2009-01-01

    Summary The number of molecules with solved three-dimensional structure but unknown function is increasing rapidly. Particularly problematic are novel folds with little detectable similarity to molecules of known function. Experimental assays can determine the functions of such molecules, but are time-consuming and expensive. Computational approaches can identify potential functional sites; however, these approaches generally rely on single static structures and do not use information about dynamics. In fact, structural dynamics can enhance function prediction: we coupled molecular dynamics simulations with structure-based function prediction algorithms that identify Ca2+ binding sites. When applied to 11 challenging proteins, both methods showed substantial improvement in performance, revealing 22 more sites in one case and 12 more in the other, with a modest increase in apparent false positives. Thus, we show that treating molecules as dynamic entities improves the performance of structure-based function prediction methods. PMID:19604472

  19. Walnuts improve neuronal and behavioral function in aging

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Introduction Walnuts are rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) and polyphenols which have been shown to improve neurochemical and behavioral function. Objectives This study investigated the mechanisms associated with age-related behavioral improvements in rats fed diets supplemented with walnu...

  20. Contractile analysis with kriging based on MR myocardial velocity imaging.

    PubMed

    Lee, Su-Lin; Huntbatch, Andrew; Yang, Guang-Zhong

    2008-01-01

    Diagnosis and treatment of coronary artery disease requires a full understanding of the intrinsic contractile mechanics of the heart. MR myocardial velocity imaging is a promising technique for revealing intramural cardiac motion but its ability to depict 3D strain tensor distribution is constrained by anisotropic voxel coverage of velocity imaging due to limited imaging slices and the achievable SNR in patient studies. This paper introduces a novel Kriging estimator for simultaneously improving the tracking and dense inter-slice estimation of the myocardial velocity data. A harmonic embedding technique is employed to determine point correspondence between left ventricle models between subjects, allowing for a statistical shape model to be reconstructed. The use of different semivariograms is investigated for optimal deformation reconstruction. Results from in vivo data demonstrate a marked improvement in tracking myocardial deformation, thus enhancing the potential clinical value of MR myocardial velocity imaging.

  1. Strain and strain rate by speckle-tracking echocardiography correlate with pressure-volume loop-derived contractility indices in a rat model of athlete's heart.

    PubMed

    Kovács, Attila; Oláh, Attila; Lux, Árpád; Mátyás, Csaba; Németh, Balázs Tamás; Kellermayer, Dalma; Ruppert, Mihály; Török, Marianna; Szabó, Lilla; Meltzer, Anna; Assabiny, Alexandra; Birtalan, Ede; Merkely, Béla; Radovits, Tamás

    2015-04-01

    Contractile function is considered to be precisely measurable only by invasive hemodynamics. We aimed to correlate strain values measured by speckle-tracking echocardiography (STE) with sensitive contractility parameters of pressure-volume (P-V) analysis in a rat model of exercise-induced left ventricular (LV) hypertrophy. LV hypertrophy was induced in rats by swim training and was compared with untrained controls. Echocardiography was performed using a 13-MHz linear transducer to obtain LV long- and short-axis recordings for STE analysis (GE EchoPAC). Global longitudinal (GLS) and circumferential strain (GCS) and longitudinal (LSr) and circumferential systolic strain rate (CSr) were measured. LV P-V analysis was performed using a pressure-conductance microcatheter, and load-independent contractility indices [slope of the end-systolic P-V relationship (ESPVR), preload recruitable stroke work (PRSW), and maximal dP/dt-end-diastolic volume relationship (dP/dtmax-EDV)] were calculated. Trained rats had increased LV mass index (trained vs. control; 2.76 ± 0.07 vs. 2.14 ± 0.05 g/kg, P < 0.001). P-V loop-derived contractility parameters were significantly improved in the trained group (ESPVR: 3.58 ± 0.22 vs. 2.51 ± 0.11 mmHg/μl; PRSW: 131 ± 4 vs. 104 ± 2 mmHg, P < 0.01). Strain and strain rate parameters were also supernormal in trained rats (GLS: -18.8 ± 0.3 vs. -15.8 ± 0.4%; LSr: -5.0 ± 0.2 vs. -4.1 ± 0.1 Hz; GCS: -18.9 ± 0.8 vs. -14.9 ± 0.6%; CSr: -4.9 ± 0.2 vs. -3.8 ± 0.2 Hz, P < 0.01). ESPVR correlated with GLS (r = -0.71) and LSr (r = -0.53) and robustly with GCS (r = -0.83) and CSr (r = -0.75, all P < 0.05). PRSW was strongly related to GLS (r = -0.64) and LSr (r = -0.71, both P < 0.01). STE can be a feasible and useful method for animal experiments. In our rat model, strain and strain rate parameters closely reflected the improvement in intrinsic contractile function induced by exercise training.

  2. [Improving functional outcome of schizophrenia with cognitive remediation].

    PubMed

    Franck, Nicolas; Demily, Caroline

    2015-03-01

    The functional outcome of schizophrenia is partly conditioned by cognitive disorders associated with this disease. The functional outcome of schizophrenia depends not only on psychotropic medications, but also on non-pharmacological measures and in particular on cognitive remediation. All patients suffering from schizophrenia should benefit from a multidisciplinary functional evaluation including neuropsychological assessment. The restitution of the functional evaluation's results values preserved skills rather than deficits. Cognitive remediation should be considered when cognitive disorders have a functional impact. It reduces the impact of the patient's cognitive disorders and improves the success of his/her concrete projects.

  3. Improved variational wave functions for few-body nuclei

    SciTech Connect

    Wiringa, R.B.; Arriaga, A.; Pandharipande, V.R.

    1995-08-01

    We continued to work on improvements to our variational wave functions for use in Monte Carlo calculations of few-body nuclei. These trial functions include central, spin, isospin, tensor, and spin-orbit two-body correlations and three-body correlations for the three-nucleon potential. In the last two years we studied a variety of extra three-body correlations. Our search for possible forms was guided by comparisons made with 34-channel Faddeev wave functions provided by the Los Alamos-Iowa group. The new trial functions reduce the discrepancy with exact Faddeev calculations in {sup 3}H and Green`s Function Monte Carlo (GFMC) calculations in {sup 4}He by about 40%. This work is now being written up for publication. We hope to use similar comparisons with GFMC calculations in the six-body nuclei to find further improvements for the light p-shell nuclei, where the variational wave functions are not as good.

  4. Age and hypertrophy related changes in contractile post-rest behavior and action potential properties in isolated rat myocytes

    PubMed Central

    Nguyen, Quan; Schuettel, Manuela; Thomas, Daniel; Dreiner, Ulrike; Grohé, Christian; Meyer, Rainer

    2007-01-01

    “Physiological” aging as well as early and progressive cardiac hypertrophy may affect action potential (AP) pattern, contractile function, and Ca2+ handling. We hypothesize that contractile function is disturbed in hypertrophy from early stages and is differently affected in aged myocardium. In vivo function, cardiomyocyte contractile behavior and APs were compared in Wistar-Kyoto (WIS) rats and spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) at different ages and degrees of hypertrophy (3–4, 9–11, 20–24 months). Post-rest (PR) behavior was used to investigate the relative contribution of the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) and the Na/Ca exchanger (NCX) to cytosolic Ca2+ removal. APs were recorded by whole-cell current-clamp and sarcomere shortening by video microscopy. Cyclopiazonic acid was used to suppress Ca2+ ATPase (SERCA) function. Heart weight/body weight ratio was increased in SHR versus WIS within all age groups. Myocyte steady state (SS) shortening amplitude was reduced in young SHR versus WIS. Aging led to a significant decay of SS contractile amplitude and relengthening velocity in WIS, but the PR potentiation was maintained. In contrast, aging in SHR led to a decrease of PR potentiation, while SS contraction and relengthening velocity increased. APD50% was always prolonged in SHR versus WIS. With aging, APD50% increased in both WIS and SHR, but was still shorter in WIS. However, in old WIS the late AP portion (APD90%) was prolonged. Ca2+ handling and AP properties are disturbed progressively with aging and with increasing hypertrophy. Decreased amplitude of shortening and velocity of relengthening in aged WIS may be attributed to reduced SERCA function. In SHR, an increase in SR leak and shift towards transmembraneous Ca handling via NCX may be responsible for the changes in contractile function. A prolonged APD90% in aged WIS may be an adaptive mechanism to preserve basal contractility. Therefore, the effects on contractile parameters and AP are

  5. Aged lymphatic contractility: recent answers and new questions.

    PubMed

    Gashev, Anatoliy A; Chatterjee, Victor

    2013-03-01

    Abstract An overview is presented of recent findings related to biology of aging of the lymph transport system. The authors discuss recently obtained data on the aging-associated alterations of lymphatic contractility in thoracic duct and mesenteric lymphatic vessels; on comparisons of function of aged mesenteric lymphatic vessels in situ versus isolated specimens and important conclusions which arose from these studies; on aging-associated changes in functional status of mast cells located close to aged mesenteric lymphatic vessels; on evidence of presence of oxidative stress in aged lymphatic vessels and changes in arrangement of muscle cells in their walls. The authors conclude that future continuation of the research efforts in this area is necessary and will be able to provide not only novel fundamental knowledge on the biology of lymphatic aging, but also will create solid foundation for the subsequent developments of lymphatic-oriented therapeutic interventions in many diseases of the elderly.

  6. Physiological response of cardiac tissue to bisphenol a: alterations in ventricular pressure and contractility

    PubMed Central

    Brooks, Daina; Chandra, Akhil; Jaimes, Rafael; Sarvazyan, Narine; Kay, Matthew

    2015-01-01

    Biomonitoring studies have indicated that humans are routinely exposed to bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical that is commonly used in the production of polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins. Epidemiological studies have shown that BPA exposure in humans is associated with cardiovascular disease; however, the direct effects of BPA on cardiac physiology are largely unknown. Previously, we have shown that BPA exposure slows atrioventricular electrical conduction, decreases epicardial conduction velocity, and prolongs action potential duration in excised rat hearts. In the present study, we tested if BPA exposure also adversely affects cardiac contractile performance. We examined the impact of BPA exposure level, sex, and pacing rate on cardiac contractile function in excised rat hearts. Hearts were retrogradely perfused at constant pressure and exposed to 10−9-10−4 M BPA. Left ventricular developed pressure and contractility were measured during sinus rhythm and during pacing (5, 6.5, and 9 Hz). Ca2+ transients were imaged from whole hearts and from neonatal rat cardiomyocyte layers. During sinus rhythm in female hearts, BPA exposure decreased left ventricular developed pressure and inotropy in a dose-dependent manner. The reduced contractile performance was exacerbated at higher pacing rates. BPA-induced effects on contractile performance were also observed in male hearts, albeit to a lesser extent. Exposure to BPA altered Ca2+ handling within whole hearts (reduced diastolic and systolic Ca2+ transient potentiation) and neonatal cardiomyocytes (reduced Ca2+ transient amplitude and prolonged Ca2+ transient release time). In conclusion, BPA exposure significantly impaired cardiac performance in a dose-dependent manner, having a major negative impact upon electrical conduction, intracellular Ca2+ handing, and ventricular contractility. PMID:25980024

  7. Changes in contractile activation characteristics of rat fast and slow skeletal muscle fibres during regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Gregorevic, Paul; Plant, David R; Stupka, Nicole; Lynch, Gordon S

    2004-01-01

    Damaged skeletal muscle fibres are replaced with new contractile units via muscle regeneration. Regenerating muscle fibres synthesize functionally distinct isoforms of contractile and regulatory proteins but little is known of their functional properties during the regeneration process. An advantage of utilizing single muscle fibre preparations is that assessment of their function is based on the overall characteristics of the contractile apparatus and regulatory system and as such, these preparations are sensitive in revealing not only coarse, but also subtle functional differences between muscle fibres. We examined the Ca2+- and Sr2+-activated contractile characteristics of permeabilized fibres from rat fast-twitch (extensor digitorum longus) and slow-twitch (soleus) muscles at 7, 14 and 21 days following myotoxic injury, to test the hypothesis that fibres from regenerating fast and slow muscles have different functional characteristics to fibres from uninjured muscles. Regenerating muscle fibres had ∼10% of the maximal force producing capacity (Po) of control (uninjured) fibres, and an altered sensitivity to Ca2+ and Sr2+ at 7 days post-injury. Increased force production and a shift in Ca2+ sensitivity consistent with fibre maturation were observed during regeneration such that Po was restored to 36–45% of that in control fibres by 21 days, and sensitivity to Ca2+ and Sr2+ was similar to that of control (uninjured) fibres. The findings support the hypothesis that regenerating muscle fibres have different contractile activation characteristics compared with mature fibres, and that they adopt properties of mature fast- or slow-twitch muscle fibres in a progressive manner as the regeneration process is completed. PMID:15181161

  8. Cytoskeletal Role in the Contractile Dysfunction of Hypertrophied Myocardium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsutsui, Hiroyuki; Ishihara, Kazuaki; Cooper, George

    1993-04-01

    Cardiac hypertrophy in response to systolic pressure loading frequently results in contractile dysfunction of unknown cause. In the present study, pressure loading increased the microtubule component of the cardiac muscle cell cytoskeleton, which was responsible for the cellular contractile dysfunction observed. The linked microtubule and contractile abnormalities were persistent and thus may have significance for the deterioration of initially compensatory cardiac hypertrophy into congestive heart failure.

  9. Text Mining Improves Prediction of Protein Functional Sites

    PubMed Central

    Cohn, Judith D.; Ravikumar, Komandur E.

    2012-01-01

    We present an approach that integrates protein structure analysis and text mining for protein functional site prediction, called LEAP-FS (Literature Enhanced Automated Prediction of Functional Sites). The structure analysis was carried out using Dynamics Perturbation Analysis (DPA), which predicts functional sites at control points where interactions greatly perturb protein vibrations. The text mining extracts mentions of residues in the literature, and predicts that residues mentioned are functionally important. We assessed the significance of each of these methods by analyzing their performance in finding known functional sites (specifically, small-molecule binding sites and catalytic sites) in about 100,000 publicly available protein structures. The DPA predictions recapitulated many of the functional site annotations and preferentially recovered binding sites annotated as biologically relevant vs. those annotated as potentially spurious. The text-based predictions were also substantially supported by the functional site annotations: compared to other residues, residues mentioned in text were roughly six times more likely to be found in a functional site. The overlap of predictions with annotations improved when the text-based and structure-based methods agreed. Our analysis also yielded new high-quality predictions of many functional site residues that were not catalogued in the curated data sources we inspected. We conclude that both DPA and text mining independently provide valuable high-throughput protein functional site predictions, and that integrating the two methods using LEAP-FS further improves the quality of these predictions. PMID:22393388

  10. Validation of an in vitro contractility assay using canine ventricular myocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Harmer, A.R. Abi-Gerges, N.; Morton, M.J.; Pullen, G.F.; Valentin, J.P.; Pollard, C.E.

    2012-04-15

    Measurement of cardiac contractility is a logical part of pre-clinical safety assessment in a drug discovery project, particularly if a risk has been identified or is suspected based on the primary- or non-target pharmacology. However, there are limited validated assays available that can be used to screen several compounds in order to identify and eliminate inotropic liability from a chemical series. We have therefore sought to develop an in vitro model with sufficient throughput for this purpose. Dog ventricular myocytes were isolated using a collagenase perfusion technique and placed in a perfused recording chamber on the stage of a microscope at ∼ 36 °C. Myocytes were stimulated to contract at a pacing frequency of 1 Hz and a digital, cell geometry measurement system (IonOptix™) was used to measure sarcomere shortening in single myocytes. After perfusion with vehicle (0.1% DMSO), concentration–effect curves were constructed for each compound in 4–30 myocytes taken from 1 or 2 dog hearts. The validation test-set was 22 negative and 8 positive inotropes, and 21 inactive compounds, as defined by their effect in dog, cynolomolgous monkey or humans. By comparing the outcome of the assay to the known in vivo contractility effects, the assay sensitivity was 81%, specificity was 75%, and accuracy was 78%. With a throughput of 6–8 compounds/week from 1 cell isolation, this assay may be of value to drug discovery projects to screen for direct contractility effects and, if a hazard is identified, help identify inactive compounds. -- Highlights: ► Cardiac contractility is an important physiological function of the heart. ► Assessment of contractility is a logical part of pre-clinical drug safety testing. ► There are limited validated assays that predict effects of compounds on contractility. ► Using dog myocytes, we have developed an in vitro cardiac contractility assay. ► The assay predicted the in vivo contractility with a good level of accuracy.

  11. Dynamic regulation of β1 subunit trafficking controls vascular contractility.

    PubMed

    Leo, M Dennis; Bannister, John P; Narayanan, Damodaran; Nair, Anitha; Grubbs, Jordan E; Gabrick, Kyle S; Boop, Frederick A; Jaggar, Jonathan H

    2014-02-11

    Ion channels composed of pore-forming and auxiliary subunits control physiological functions in virtually all cell types. A conventional view is that channels assemble with their auxiliary subunits before anterograde plasma membrane trafficking of the protein complex. Whether the multisubunit composition of surface channels is fixed following protein synthesis or flexible and open to acute and, potentially, rapid modulation to control activity and cellular excitability is unclear. Arterial smooth muscle cells (myocytes) express large-conductance Ca(2+)-activated potassium (BK) channel α and auxiliary β1 subunits that are functionally significant modulators of arterial contractility. Here, we show that native BKα subunits are primarily (∼95%) plasma membrane-localized in human and rat arterial myocytes. In contrast, only a small fraction (∼10%) of total β1 subunits are located at the cell surface. Immunofluorescence resonance energy transfer microscopy demonstrated that intracellular β1 subunits are stored within Rab11A-postive recycling endosomes. Nitric oxide (NO), acting via cGMP-dependent protein kinase, and cAMP-dependent pathways stimulated rapid (≤1 min) anterograde trafficking of β1 subunit-containing recycling endosomes, which increased surface β1 almost threefold. These β1 subunits associated with surface-resident BKα proteins, elevating channel Ca(2+) sensitivity and activity. Our data also show that rapid β1 subunit anterograde trafficking is the primary mechanism by which NO activates myocyte BK channels and induces vasodilation. In summary, we show that rapid β1 subunit surface trafficking controls functional BK channel activity in arterial myocytes and vascular contractility. Conceivably, regulated auxiliary subunit trafficking may control ion channel activity in a wide variety of cell types.

  12. Diagnosing and improving functioning in interdisciplinary health care teams.

    PubMed

    Blackmore, Gail; Persaud, D David

    2012-01-01

    Interdisciplinary teams play a key role in the delivery of health care. Team functioning can positively or negatively impact the effective and efficient delivery of health care services as well as the personal well-being of group members. Additionally, teams must be able and willing to work together to achieve team goals within a climate that reflects commitment to team goals, accountability, respect, and trust. Not surprisingly, dysfunctional team functioning can limit the success of interdisciplinary health care teams. The first step in improving dysfunctional team function is to conduct an analysis based on criteria necessary for team success, and this article provides meaningful criteria for doing such an analysis. These are the following: a common team goal, the ability and willingness to work together to achieve team goals, decision making, communication, and team member relationships. High-functioning interdisciplinary teams must exhibit features of good team function in all key domains. If a team functions well in some domains and needs to improve in others, targeted strategies are described that can be used to improve team functioning.

  13. Cadmium translocation by contractile roots differs from that in regular, non-contractile roots

    PubMed Central

    Lux, Alexander; Lackovič, Andrej; Van Staden, Johannes; Lišková, Desana; Kohanová, Jana; Martinka, Michal

    2015-01-01

    Background and Aims Contractile roots are known and studied mainly in connection with the process of shrinkage of their basal parts, which acts to pull the shoot of the plant deeper into the ground. Previous studies have shown that the specific structure of these roots results in more intensive water uptake at the base, which is in contrast to regular root types. The purpose of this study was to find out whether the basal parts of contractile roots are also more active in translocation of cadmium to the shoot. Methods Plants of the South African ornamental species Tritonia gladiolaris were cultivated in vitro for 2 months, at which point they possessed well-developed contractile roots. They were then transferred to Petri dishes with horizontally separated compartments of agar containing 50 µmol Cd(NO3)2 in the region of the root base or the root apex. Seedlings of 4-d-old maize (Zea mays) plants, which do not possess contractile roots, were also transferred to similar Petri dishes. The concentrations of Cd in the leaves of the plants were compared after 10 d of cultivation. Anatomical analyses of Tritonia roots were performed using appropriately stained freehand cross-sections. Key Results The process of contraction required specific anatomical adaptation of the root base in Tritonia, with less lignified and less suberized tissues in comparison with the subapical part of the root. These unusual developmental characteristics were accompanied by more intensive translocation of Cd ions from the basal part of contractile roots to the leaves than from the apical–subapical root parts. The opposite effects were seen in the non-contractile roots of maize, with higher uptake and transport by the apical parts of the root and lower uptake and transport by the basal part. Conclusions The specific characteristics of contractile roots may have a significant impact on the uptake of ions, including toxic metals from the soil surface layers. This may be important for plant

  14. The Contractile Vacuole as a Key Regulator of Cellular Water Flow in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

    PubMed Central

    Komsic-Buchmann, Karin; Wöstehoff, Luisa

    2014-01-01

    Most freshwater flagellates use contractile vacuoles (CVs) to expel excess water. We have used Chlamydomonas reinhardtii as a green model system to investigate CV function during adaptation to osmotic changes in culture medium. We show that the contractile vacuole in Chlamydomonas is regulated in two different ways. The size of the contractile vacuoles increases during cell growth, with the contraction interval strongly depending on the osmotic strength of the medium. In contrast, there are only small fluctuations in cytosolic osmolarity and plasma membrane permeability. Modeling of the CV membrane permeability indicates that only a small osmotic gradient is necessary for water flux into the CV, which most likely is facilitated by the aquaporin major intrinsic protein 1 (MIP1). We show that MIP1 is localized to the contractile vacuole, and that the expression rate and protein level of MIP1 exhibit only minor fluctuations under different osmotic conditions. In contrast, SEC6, a protein of the exocyst complex that is required for the water expulsion step, and a dynamin-like protein are upregulated under strong hypotonic conditions. The overexpression of a CreMIP1-GFP construct did not change the physiology of the CV. The functional implications of these results are discussed. PMID:25217463

  15. Intestine of dystrophic mice presents enhanced contractile resistance to stretching despite morphological impairment.

    PubMed

    Alves, Gabriel A; Silva, Luisa R; Rosa, Eloi F; Aboulafia, Jeannine; Freymüller-Haapalainen, Edna; Souccar, Caden; Nouailhetas, Viviane L A

    2014-02-01

    Protein dystrophin is a component of the dystrophin-associated protein complex, which links the contractile machinery to the plasma membrane and to the extracellular matrix. Its absence leads to a condition known as Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), a disease characterized by progressive skeletal muscle degeneration, motor disability, and early death. In mdx mice, the most common DMD animal model, loss of muscle cells is observed, but the overall disease alterations are less intense than in DMD patients. Alterations in gastrointestinal tissues from DMD patients and mdx mice are not yet completely understood. Thus, we investigated the possible relationships between morphological (light and electron microscopy) and contractile function (by recording the isometric contractile response) with alterations in Ca²⁺ handling in the ileum of mdx mice. We evidenced a 27% reduction in the ileal muscular layer thickness, a partial damage to the mucosal layer, and a partial damage to mitochondria of the intestinal myocytes. Functionally, the ileum from mdx presented an enhanced responsiveness during stretch, a mild impairment in both the electromechanical and pharmacomechanical signaling associated with altered calcium influx-induced contraction, with no alterations in the sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca²⁺ storage (maintenance of the caffeine and thapsigargin-induced contraction) compared with control animals. Thus, it is evidenced that the protein dystrophin plays an important role in the preservation of both the microstructure and ultrastructure of mice intestine, while exerting a minor but important role concerning the intestinal contractile responsiveness and calcium handling.

  16. Secondary surgery for functional improvement after hand transplantation.

    PubMed

    Cavadas, Pedro C; Ibañez, Javier; Thione, Alessandro

    2011-10-01

    Unilateral and bilateral hand transplantations have been performed worldwide with good midterm functional results. The role of secondary surgery to improve function in the patients with hand transplant has not been uniformly agreed upon. A series of 10 secondary procedures were performed in 5 surgeries on 3 patients with bilateral upper extremity transplantation. There was 1 incidence of acute rejection after 1 procedure. The functional improvement was evaluated subjectively by the patients as substantial. Secondary procedures can upgrade function after hand transplantation and provide unique opportunities for deep-tissue biopsies. The proinflammatory stimulus of the surgery can theoretically precipitate an acute rejection. The pharmacologic interference of some immunosuppressive drugs with wound healing should also be considered.

  17. Tension generation by threads of contractile proteins

    PubMed Central

    1977-01-01

    Threads of contractile proteins were formed via extrusion and their isometric tensions and isotonic contraction velocities were measured. We obtained reproducible data by using a new and sensitive tensiometer. The force-velocity curves of actomyosin threads were similar to those of muscle, with isometric tensions of the order of 10g/cm2 and maximum contraction velocites of the order of 10(-2) lengths/s. The data could be fitted by Hill's equation. Addition of tropomyosin and troponin to the threads increased isometric tension and maximum contraction velocity. Threads which contained troponin and tropomyosin required Ca++ for contraction and the dependence of their isometric tension on the level of free Ca++ was like that of muscle. The dependence of tension or of contraction velocity upon temperature or upon ionic strength is similar for actomyosin threads and muscle fibers. In contrast, the dependence of most parameters which are characteristic of the actomyosin interaction in solution (or suspension) upon these variables is not similar to the dependence of the muscle fiber parameters. The conclusion we have drawn from these results is that the mechanism of tension generation in the threads is similar to the mechanism that exists in muscle. Because the protein composition of the thread system can be manipulated readily and because the tensions and velocities of the threads can be related directly to the physiological parameters of muscle fibers, the threads provide a powerful method for studying contractile proteins. PMID:137958

  18. Contractile reserve and calcium regulation are depressed in myocytes from chronically unloaded hearts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ito, Kenta; Nakayama, Masaharu; Hasan, Faisal; Yan, Xinhua; Schneider, Michael D.; Lorell, Beverly H.

    2003-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Chronic cardiac unloading of the normal heart results in the reduction of left ventricular (LV) mass, but effects on myocyte contractile function are not known. METHODS AND RESULTS: Cardiac unloading and reduction in LV mass were induced by heterotopic heart transplantation to the abdominal aorta in isogenic rats. Contractility and [Ca(2+)](i) regulation in LV myocytes were studied at both 2 and 5 weeks after transplantation. Native in situ hearts from recipient animals were used as the controls for all experiments. Contractile function indices in myocytes from 2-week unloaded and native (control) hearts were similar under baseline conditions (0.5 Hz, 1.2 mmol/L [Ca(2+)](o), and 36 degrees C) and in response to stimulation with high [Ca(2+)](o) (range 2.5 to 4.0 mmol/L). In myocytes from 5-week unloaded hearts, there were no differences in fractional cell shortening and peak-systolic [Ca(2+)](i) at baseline; however, time to 50% relengthening and time to 50% decline in [Ca(2+)](i) were prolonged compared with controls. Severe defects in fractional cell shortening and peak-systolic [Ca(2+)](i) were elicited in myocytes from 5-week unloaded hearts in response to high [Ca(2+)](o). However, there were no differences in the contractile response to isoproterenol between myocytes from unloaded and native hearts. In 5-week unloaded hearts, but not in 2-week unloaded hearts, LV protein levels of phospholamban were increased (345% of native heart values). Protein levels of sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) ATPase and the Na(+)/Ca(2+) exchanger were not changed. CONCLUSIONS: Chronic unloading of the normal heart caused a time-dependent depression of myocyte contractile function, suggesting the potential for impaired performance in states associated with prolonged cardiac atrophy.

  19. ILNCSIM: improved lncRNA functional similarity calculation model.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yu-An; Chen, Xing; You, Zhu-Hong; Huang, De-Shuang; Chan, Keith C C

    2016-05-03

    Increasing observations have indicated that lncRNAs play a significant role in various critical biological processes and the development and progression of various human diseases. Constructing lncRNA functional similarity networks could benefit the development of computational models for inferring lncRNA functions and identifying lncRNA-disease associations. However, little effort has been devoted to quantifying lncRNA functional similarity. In this study, we developed an Improved LNCRNA functional SIMilarity calculation model (ILNCSIM) based on the assumption that lncRNAs with similar biological functions tend to be involved in similar diseases. The main improvement comes from the combination of the concept of information content and the hierarchical structure of disease directed acyclic graphs for disease similarity calculation. ILNCSIM was combined with the previously proposed model of Laplacian Regularized Least Squares for lncRNA-Disease Association to further evaluate its performance. As a result, new model obtained reliable performance in the leave-one-out cross validation (AUCs of 0.9316 and 0.9074 based on MNDR and Lnc2cancer databases, respectively), and 5-fold cross validation (AUCs of 0.9221 and 0.9033 for MNDR and Lnc2cancer databases), which significantly improved the prediction performance of previous models. It is anticipated that ILNCSIM could serve as an effective lncRNA function prediction model for future biomedical researches.

  20. ILNCSIM: improved lncRNA functional similarity calculation model

    PubMed Central

    You, Zhu-Hong; Huang, De-Shuang; Chan, Keith C.C.

    2016-01-01

    Increasing observations have indicated that lncRNAs play a significant role in various critical biological processes and the development and progression of various human diseases. Constructing lncRNA functional similarity networks could benefit the development of computational models for inferring lncRNA functions and identifying lncRNA-disease associations. However, little effort has been devoted to quantifying lncRNA functional similarity. In this study, we developed an Improved LNCRNA functional SIMilarity calculation model (ILNCSIM) based on the assumption that lncRNAs with similar biological functions tend to be involved in similar diseases. The main improvement comes from the combination of the concept of information content and the hierarchical structure of disease directed acyclic graphs for disease similarity calculation. ILNCSIM was combined with the previously proposed model of Laplacian Regularized Least Squares for lncRNA-Disease Association to further evaluate its performance. As a result, new model obtained reliable performance in the leave-one-out cross validation (AUCs of 0.9316 and 0.9074 based on MNDR and Lnc2cancer databases, respectively), and 5-fold cross validation (AUCs of 0.9221 and 0.9033 for MNDR and Lnc2cancer databases), which significantly improved the prediction performance of previous models. It is anticipated that ILNCSIM could serve as an effective lncRNA function prediction model for future biomedical researches. PMID:27028993

  1. Are Clinicians' Assessments of Improvements in Children's Functioning "Global"?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    De Los Reyes, Andres; Alfano, Candice A.; Beidel, Deborah C.

    2011-01-01

    In this study, the authors examined the relations among clinician ratings of treatment improvement and discrepancies between parent and blinded laboratory rater reports of child social functioning administered before and after treatment for social anxiety disorder. Participants included a clinic sample of 101 children (7-16 years old; M = 11.67,…

  2. FAB (Functionally Alert Behavior Strategies) to Improve Self-Control

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pagano, John

    2015-01-01

    This paper describes the FAB (Functionally Alert Behavior) Strategies approach to improve behavior in children and adolescents with complex behavioral challenges. FAB Strategies include evidence-based environmental adaptations, sensory modulation, positive behavioral support, and physical self-regulation strategies. FAB Strategies can be used by…

  3. Increased catalase expression improves muscle function in mdx mice.

    PubMed

    Selsby, Joshua T

    2011-02-01

    It has been well established that oxidative stress contributes to pathology associated with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). I hypothesized that overexpression of the antioxidant enzyme catalase would improve muscle function in the mdx mouse, the mouse model of DMD. To test this hypothesis, neonatal mdx mice were injected with a recombinant adeno-associated virus driving the catalase transgene. Animals were killed 4 or 6 weeks or 6 months following injection. Muscle function was generally improved by catalase overexpression. Four weeks following injection, extensor digitorum longus specific tension was improved twofold, while soleus was similar between groups. Resistance to contraction-induced injury was similar between groups; however, resistance to fatigue was increased 25% in catalase-treated soleus compared with control muscle. Six weeks following injection, extensor digitorum longus specific tension was increased 15%, while soleus specific tension was similar between treated and untreated limbs. Catalase overexpression reduced contraction-induced injury by 30-45% and fatigue by 20% compared with control limbs. Six months following injection, diaphragm specific tension was similar between groups, but resistance to contraction-induced injury was improved by 35% and fatigue by 25%. Taken together, these data indicate that catalase can improve a subset of parameters of muscle function in dystrophin-deficient skeletal muscle.

  4. Impaired pulmonary artery contractile responses in a rat model of microgravity: role of nitric oxide

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nyhan, Daniel; Kim, Soonyul; Dunbar, Stacey; Li, Dechun; Shoukas, Artin; Berkowitz, Dan E.

    2002-01-01

    Vascular contractile hyporesponsiveness is an important mechanism underlying orthostatic intolerance after microgravity. Baroreceptor reflexes can modulate both pulmonary resistance and capacitance function and thus cardiac output. We hypothesized, therefore, that pulmonary vasoreactivity is impaired in the hindlimb-unweighted (HLU) rat model of microgravity. Pulmonary artery (PA) contractile responses to phenylephrine (PE) and U-46619 (U4) were significantly decreased in the PAs from HLU vs. control (C) animals. N(G)-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (10(-5) M) enhanced the contractile responses in the PA rings from both C and HLU animals and completely abolished the differential responses to PE and U4 in HLU vs. C animals. Vasorelaxant responses to ACh were significantly enhanced in PA rings from HLU rats compared with C. Moreover, vasorelaxant responses to sodium nitroprusside were also significantly enhanced. Endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) and soluble guanlyl cyclase expression were significantly enhanced in PA and lung tissue from HLU rats. In marked contrast, the expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase was unchanged in lung tissue. These data support the hypothesis that vascular contractile responsiveness is attenuated in PAs from HLU rats and that this hyporesponsiveness is due at least in part to increased nitric oxide synthase activity resulting from enhanced eNOS expression. These findings may have important implications for blood volume distribution and attenuated stroke volume responses to orthostatic stress after microgravity exposure.

  5. A device for rapid and quantitative measurement of cardiac myocyte contractility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaitas, Angelo; Malhotra, Ricky; Li, Tao; Herron, Todd; Jalife, José

    2015-03-01

    Cardiac contractility is the hallmark of cardiac function and is a predictor of healthy or diseased cardiac muscle. Despite advancements over the last two decades, the techniques and tools available to cardiovascular scientists are limited in their utility to accurately and reliably measure the amplitude and frequency of cardiomyocyte contractions. Isometric force measurements in the past have entailed cumbersome attachment of isolated and permeabilized cardiomyocytes to a force transducer followed by measurements of sarcomere lengths under conditions of submaximal and maximal Ca2+ activation. These techniques have the inherent disadvantages of being labor intensive and costly. We have engineered a micro-machined cantilever sensor with an embedded deflection-sensing element that, in preliminary experiments, has demonstrated to reliably measure cardiac cell contractions in real-time. Here, we describe this new bioengineering tool with applicability in the cardiovascular research field to effectively and reliably measure cardiac cell contractility in a quantitative manner. We measured contractility in both primary neonatal rat heart cardiomyocyte monolayers that demonstrated a beat frequency of 3 Hz as well as human embryonic stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes with a contractile frequency of about 1 Hz. We also employed the β-adrenergic agonist isoproterenol (100 nmol l-1) and observed that our cantilever demonstrated high sensitivity in detecting subtle changes in both chronotropic and inotropic responses of monolayers. This report describes the utility of our micro-device in both basic cardiovascular research as well as in small molecule drug discovery to monitor cardiac cell contractions.

  6. MRTF-A signaling regulates the acquisition of the contractile phenotype in dedifferentiated chondrocytes.

    PubMed

    Parreno, Justin; Raju, Sneha; Wu, Po-Han; Kandel, Rita A

    2016-10-14

    Chondrocyte culture as a monolayer for cell number expansion results in dedifferentiation whereby expanded cells acquire contractile features and increased actin polymerization status. This study determined whether the actin polymerization based signaling pathway, myocardin-related transcription factor-a (MRTF-A) is involved in regulating this contractile phenotype. Serial passaging of chondrocytes in monolayer culture to passage 2 resulted in increased gene and protein expression of the contractile molecules alpha-smooth muscle actin, transgelin and vinculin compared to non-passaged, primary cells. This resulted in a functional change as passaged 2, but not primary, chondrocytes were capable of contracting type I collagen gels in a stress-relaxed contraction assay. These changes were associated with increased actin polymerization and MRTF-A nuclear localization. The involvement of actin was demonstrated by latrunculin B depolymerization of actin which reversed these changes. Alternatively cytochalasin D which activates MRTF-A increased gene and protein expression of α-smooth muscle actin, transgelin and vinculin, whereas CCG1423 which deactivates MRTF-A decreased these molecules. The involvement of MRTF-A signaling was confirmed by gene silencing of MRTF or its co-factor serum response factor. Knockdown experiments revealed downregulation of α-smooth muscle actin and transgelin gene and protein expression, and inhibition of gel contraction. These findings demonstrate that passaged chondrocytes acquire a contractile phenotype and that this change is modulated by the actin-MRTF-A-serum response factor signaling pathway.

  7. Carvedilol Prevents Ovariectomy-Induced Myocardial Contractile Dysfunction in Female Rat

    PubMed Central

    Ribeiro, Rogerio Faustino; Potratz, Felipe F.; Pavan, Brunella M. M.; Forechi, Ludimila; Lima, Filipe Lugon Moulin; Fiorim, Jonaina; Fernandes, Aurelia Araujo; Vassallo, Dalton Valentim; Stefanon, Ivanita

    2013-01-01

    Carvedilol has beneficial effects on cardiac function in patients with heart failure but its effect on ovariectomy-induced myocardial contractile dysfunction remains unclear. Estrogen deficiency induces myocardial contractile dysfunction and increases cardiovascular disease risk in postmenopausal women. Our aim was to investigate whether carvedilol, a beta receptor blocker, would prevent ovariectomy-induced myocardial contractile dysfunction. Female rats (8 weeks old) that underwent bilateral ovariectomy were randomly assigned to receive daily treatment with carvedilol (OVX+CAR, 20 mg/kg), placebo (OVX) and SHAM for 58 days. Left ventricle papillary muscle was mounted for isometric tension recordings. The inotropic response to Ca2+ (0.62 to 3.75 mM) and isoproterenol (Iso 10−8 to 10−2 M) were assessed. Expression of calcium handling proteins was measured by western blot analysis. Carvedilol treatment in the OVX animals: prevented weight gain and slight hypertrophy, restored the reduced positive inotropic responses to Ca2+ and isoproterenol, prevented the reduction in SERCA2a expression, abolished the increase in superoxide anion production, normalized the increase in p22phox expression, and decreased serum angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) activity. This study demonstrated that myocardial contractile dysfunction and SERCA2a down regulation were prevented by carvedilol treatment. Superoxide anion production and NADPH oxidase seem to be involved in this response. PMID:23308166

  8. Functional fitness improvements after a worksite-based yoga initiative.

    PubMed

    Cowen, Virginia S

    2010-01-01

    This study explored the benefits of yoga on functional fitness, flexibility, and perceived stress. A quasi-experimental design was used to measure benefits of yoga in sample of firefighters from a major metropolitan fire department. Yoga classes were conducted on-shift, in the fire stations over the period of 6 weeks. The classes included pranayama (breathing), asana (postures), and savasana (relaxation); 108 firefighters enrolled in the study, most were physically active but had no prior experience with yoga. Baseline and post-yoga assessments were completed by 77 participants. Paired t-tests revealed significant improvements in the Functional Movement Screen, a seven item test that measures functional fitness. Improvements were also noted in trunk flexibility and perceived stress. Participants also reported favorable perceptions of yoga: feeling more focused and less musculoskeletal pain. These findings - along with the retention of the majority of the participants - indicate that participants benefited from yoga.

  9. Cardiac-Specific Knockout of ETA Receptor Mitigates Paraquat-Induced Cardiac Contractile Dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jiaxing; Lu, Songhe; Zheng, Qijun; Hu, Nan; Yu, Wenjun; Li, Na; Liu, Min; Gao, Beilei; Zhang, Guoyong; Zhang, Yingmei; Wang, Haichang

    2016-07-01

    Paraquat (1,1'-dim ethyl-4-4'-bipyridinium dichloride), a highly toxic quaternary ammonium herbicide widely used in agriculture, exerts potent toxic prooxidant effects resulting in multi-organ failure including the lung and heart although the underlying mechanism remains elusive. Recent evidence suggests possible involvement of endothelin system in paraquat-induced acute lung injury. This study was designed to examine the role of endothelin receptor A (ETA) in paraquat-induced cardiac contractile and mitochondrial injury. Wild-type (WT) and cardiac-specific ETA receptor knockout mice were challenged to paraquat (45 mg/kg, i.p.) for 48 h prior to the assessment of echocardiographic, cardiomyocyte contractile and intracellular Ca(2+) properties, as well as apoptosis and mitochondrial damage. Levels of the mitochondrial proteins for biogenesis and oxidative phosphorylation including UCP2, HSP90 and PGC1α were evaluated. Our results revealed that paraquat elicited cardiac enlargement, mechanical anomalies including compromised echocardiographic parameters (elevated left ventricular end-systolic and end-diastolic diameters as well as reduced factional shortening), suppressed cardiomyocyte contractile function, intracellular Ca(2+) handling, overt apoptosis and mitochondrial damage. ETA receptor knockout itself failed to affect myocardial function, apoptosis, mitochondrial integrity and mitochondrial protein expression. However, ETA receptor knockout ablated or significantly attenuated paraquat-induced cardiac contractile and intracellular Ca(2+) defect, apoptosis and mitochondrial damage. Taken together, these findings revealed that endothelin system in particular the ETA receptor may be involved in paraquat-induced toxic myocardial contractile anomalies possibly related to apoptosis and mitochondrial damage.

  10. Myogenic Akt signaling attenuates muscular degeneration, promotes myofiber regeneration and improves muscle function in dystrophin-deficient mdx mice

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Michelle H.; Kay, Danielle I.; Rudra, Renuka T.; Chen, Bo Ming; Hsu, Nigel; Izumiya, Yasuhiro; Martinez, Leonel; Spencer, Melissa J.; Walsh, Kenneth; Grinnell, Alan D.; Crosbie, Rachelle H.

    2011-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy, the most common form of childhood muscular dystrophy, is caused by X-linked inherited mutations in the dystrophin gene. Dystrophin deficiencies result in the loss of the dystrophin–glycoprotein complex at the plasma membrane, which leads to structural instability and muscle degeneration. Previously, we induced muscle-specific overexpression of Akt, a regulator of cellular metabolism and survival, in mdx mice at pre-necrotic (<3.5 weeks) ages and demonstrated upregulation of the utrophin–glycoprotein complex and protection against contractile-induced stress. Here, we found that delaying exogenous Akt treatment of mdx mice after the onset of peak pathology (>6 weeks) similarly increased the abundance of compensatory adhesion complexes at the extrasynaptic sarcolemma. Akt introduction after onset of pathology reverses the mdx histopathological measures, including decreases in blood serum albumin infiltration. Akt also improves muscle function in mdx mice as demonstrated through in vivo grip strength tests and in vitro contraction measurements of the extensor digitorum longus muscle. To further explore the significance of Akt in myofiber regeneration, we injured wild-type muscle with cardiotoxin and found that Akt induced a faster regenerative response relative to controls at equivalent time points. We demonstrate that Akt signaling pathways counteract mdx pathogenesis by enhancing endogenous compensatory mechanisms. These findings provide a rationale for investigating the therapeutic activation of the Akt pathway to counteract muscle wasting. PMID:21245083

  11. Using Operational Analysis to Improve Access to Pulmonary Function Testing

    PubMed Central

    Ip, Ada; Asamoah-Barnieh, Raymond; Bischak, Diane P.; Davidson, Warren J.; Flemons, W. Ward; Pendharkar, Sachin R.

    2016-01-01

    Background. Timely pulmonary function testing is crucial to improving diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary diseases. Perceptions of poor access at an academic pulmonary function laboratory prompted analysis of system demand and capacity to identify factors contributing to poor access. Methods. Surveys and interviews identified stakeholder perspectives on operational processes and access challenges. Retrospective data on testing demand and resource capacity was analyzed to understand utilization of testing resources. Results. Qualitative analysis demonstrated that stakeholder groups had discrepant views on access and capacity in the laboratory. Mean daily resource utilization was 0.64 (SD 0.15), with monthly average utilization consistently less than 0.75. Reserved testing slots for subspecialty clinics were poorly utilized, leaving many testing slots unfilled. When subspecialty demand exceeded number of reserved slots, there was sufficient capacity in the pulmonary function schedule to accommodate added demand. Findings were shared with stakeholders and influenced scheduling process improvements. Conclusion. This study highlights the importance of operational data to identify causes of poor access, guide system decision-making, and determine effects of improvement initiatives in a variety of healthcare settings. Importantly, simple operational analysis can help to improve efficiency of health systems with little or no added financial investment. PMID:27445545

  12. Improved Functional Characteristics of Whey Protein Hydrolysates in Food Industry.

    PubMed

    Jeewanthi, Renda Kankanamge Chaturika; Lee, Na-Kyoung; Paik, Hyun-Dong

    2015-01-01

    This review focuses on the enhanced functional characteristics of enzymatic hydrolysates of whey proteins (WPHs) in food applications compared to intact whey proteins (WPs). WPs are applied in foods as whey protein concentrates (WPCs), whey protein isolates (WPIs), and WPHs. WPs are byproducts of cheese production, used in a wide range of food applications due to their nutritional validity, functional activities, and cost effectiveness. Enzymatic hydrolysis yields improved functional and nutritional benefits in contrast to heat denaturation or native applications. WPHs improve solubility over a wide range of pH, create viscosity through water binding, and promote cohesion, adhesion, and elasticity. WPHs form stronger but more flexible edible films than WPC or WPI. WPHs enhance emulsification, bind fat, and facilitate whipping, compared to intact WPs. Extensive hydrolyzed WPHs with proper heat applications are the best emulsifiers and addition of polysaccharides improves the emulsification ability of WPHs. Also, WPHs improve the sensorial properties like color, flavor, and texture but impart a bitter taste in case where extensive hydrolysis (degree of hydrolysis greater than 8%). It is important to consider the type of enzyme, hydrolysis conditions, and WPHs production method based on the nature of food application.

  13. Inosine improves functional recovery after experimental traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Dachir, Shlomit; Shabashov, Dalia; Trembovler, Victoria; Alexandrovich, Alexander G; Benowitz, Larry I; Shohami, Esther

    2014-03-25

    Despite years of research, no effective therapy is yet available for the treatment of traumatic brain injury (TBI). The most prevalent and debilitating features in survivors of TBI are cognitive deficits and motor dysfunction. A potential therapeutic method for improving the function of patients following TBI would be to restore, at least in part, plasticity to the CNS in a controlled way that would allow for the formation of compensatory circuits. Inosine, a naturally occurring purine nucleoside, has been shown to promote axon collateral growth in the corticospinal tract (CST) following stroke and focal TBI. In the present study, we investigated the effects of inosine on motor and cognitive deficits, CST sprouting, and expression of synaptic proteins in an experimental model of closed head injury (CHI). Treatment with inosine (100 mg/kg i.p. at 1, 24 and 48 h following CHI) improved outcome after TBI, significantly decreasing the neurological severity score (NSS, p<0.04 vs. saline), an aggregate measure of performance on several tasks. It improved non-spatial cognitive performance (object recognition, p<0.016 vs. saline) but had little effect on sensorimotor coordination (rotarod) and spatial cognitive functions (Y-maze). Inosine did not affect CST sprouting in the lumbar spinal cord but did restore levels of the growth-associated protein GAP-43 in the hippocampus, though not in the cerebral cortex. Our results suggest that inosine may improve functional outcome after TBI.

  14. Improved Functional Characteristics of Whey Protein Hydrolysates in Food Industry

    PubMed Central

    Jeewanthi, Renda Kankanamge Chaturika; Lee, Na-Kyoung; Paik, Hyun-Dong

    2015-01-01

    This review focuses on the enhanced functional characteristics of enzymatic hydrolysates of whey proteins (WPHs) in food applications compared to intact whey proteins (WPs). WPs are applied in foods as whey protein concentrates (WPCs), whey protein isolates (WPIs), and WPHs. WPs are byproducts of cheese production, used in a wide range of food applications due to their nutritional validity, functional activities, and cost effectiveness. Enzymatic hydrolysis yields improved functional and nutritional benefits in contrast to heat denaturation or native applications. WPHs improve solubility over a wide range of pH, create viscosity through water binding, and promote cohesion, adhesion, and elasticity. WPHs form stronger but more flexible edible films than WPC or WPI. WPHs enhance emulsification, bind fat, and facilitate whipping, compared to intact WPs. Extensive hydrolyzed WPHs with proper heat applications are the best emulsifiers and addition of polysaccharides improves the emulsification ability of WPHs. Also, WPHs improve the sensorial properties like color, flavor, and texture but impart a bitter taste in case where extensive hydrolysis (degree of hydrolysis greater than 8%). It is important to consider the type of enzyme, hydrolysis conditions, and WPHs production method based on the nature of food application. PMID:26761849

  15. Non-muscle contractile proteins in the organ of corti

    SciTech Connect

    Thalmann, I.; Giometti, C.S.; Thalmann, R. )

    1985-01-01

    Evidence indicates that an active contractile process exists in the outer hair cells of the mammalian cochlea. Proteins ordinarily associated with muscle contraction have been identified in the outer hair cells by immunohistologic techniques. On this basis a muscle-like mechanism of contraction/relaxation has been postulated by several investigators. The possibility must be considered, however, that the contractile proteins identified thus far in inner ear structures may be nonmuscle rather than muscle forms. In skeletal muscle, actin and myosin are responsible for the physical movement of the muscle fibers, and tropomyosin and troponin are involved in regulating this movement; these four proteins, as well as a variety of proteins involved with the normal cell maintenance functions are all of a muscle-specific type. Non-muscle-like motion also depends upon the interaction of actin with myosin; however, not only are these proteins structurally different from those specific to skeletal muscle but their proportions are also different. We have used two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis to study the proteins in freeze dried preparations of whole organ of Corti from the guinea pig. The identified proteins include non-muscle actin, three forms of non-muscle tropomyosin, alpha- and beta-tubulin, alpha-actinin, and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH B). Myosin heavy and light chains were not detected in the organ of Corti preparation, but the levels of those proteins might be too low to be detected with the protein load used of those proteins might be too low to be detected with the protein load used for this analysis. Although troponin could not be detected, calmodulin was present. All of these findings tend to indicate that the contraction/relaxation processes that have been associated with the organ of Corti by others are of the non-muscle variety.

  16. Spiral waves on a contractile tissue

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mesin, L.; Ambrosi, D.

    2011-02-01

    In a healthy cardiac tissue, electric waves propagate in the form of a travelling pulse, from the apex to the base, and activate the contraction of the heart. Defects in the propagation can destabilize travelling fronts and originate possible new periodic solutions, as spiral waves. Spiral waves are quite stable, but the interplay between currents and strain can distort the periodic pattern, provided the coupling is strong enough. In this paper we investigate the stability of spiral waves on a contractile medium in a non-standard framework, in which the electrical potential dictates the active strain (not stress) of the muscle. The role of conducting and contracting fibers is included in the model and periodic boundary conditions are adopted. A correlation analysis allows to evaluate numerically the range of stability of the parameters for the spiral waves, depending on the strain of the contracted fibers and on the magnitude of the stretch activated current.

  17. Improving the ecological validity of executive functioning assessment.

    PubMed

    Chaytor, Naomi; Schmitter-Edgecombe, Maureen; Burr, Robert

    2006-04-01

    The current study investigated ways to improve the ecological validity of the neuropsychological assessment of executive functioning through the formal assessment of compensatory strategies and environmental cognitive demands. Results indicated that the group of executive functioning tests (i.e., Trail Making Test, Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, Stroop, and Controlled Oral Word Association Test) accounted for 18-20% of the variance in everyday executive ability as measured by the Dysexecutive Questionnaire and Brock Adaptive Functioning Questionnaire. The addition of extra-test variables significantly increased the variance in everyday executive ability accounted for. The current study adds to the literature on the ecological validity of executive functioning assessment by highlighting the importance of extra-test variables when trying to understand the complex relationship between cognitive testing and real world performance.

  18. Methylphenidate improves motor functions in children diagnosed with Hyperkinetic Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Stray, Liv Larsen; Stray, Torstein; Iversen, Synnøve; Ruud, Anne; Ellertsen, Bjørn

    2009-01-01

    Background A previous study showed that a high percentage of children diagnosed with Hyperkinetic Disorder (HKD) displayed a consistent pattern of motor function problems. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of methylphenidate (MPH) on such motor performance in children with HKD Methods 25 drug-naïve boys, aged 8–12 yr with a HKD-F90.0 diagnosis, were randomly assigned into two groups within a double blind cross-over design, and tested with a motor assessment instrument, during MPH and placebo conditions. Results The percentage of MFNU scores in the sample indicating 'severe motor problems' ranged from 44–84%, typically over 60%. Highly significant improvements in motor performance were observed with MPH compared to baseline ratings on all the 17 subtests of the MFNU 1–2 hr after administration of MPH. There were no significant placebo effects. The motor improvement was consistent with improvement of clinical symptoms. Conclusion The study confirmed our prior clinical observations showing that children with ADHD typically demonstrate marked improvements of motor functions after a single dose of 10 mg MPH. The most pronounced positive MPH response was seen in subtests measuring either neuromotor inhibition, or heightened muscular tone in the gross movement muscles involved in maintaining the alignment and balance of the body. Introduction of MPH generally led to improved balance and a generally more coordinated and controlled body movement. PMID:19439096

  19. Berberine improves kidney function in diabetic mice via AMPK activation.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Long; Sun, Li-Na; Nie, Hui-Bin; Wang, Xue-Ling; Guan, Guang-Ju

    2014-01-01

    Diabetic nephropathy is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in diabetic patients. Effective therapies to prevent the development of this disease are required. Berberine (BBR) has several preventive effects on diabetes and its complications. However, the molecular mechanism of BBR on kidney function in diabetes is not well defined. Here, we reported that activation of AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is required for BBR-induced improvement of kidney function in vivo. AMPK phosphorylation and activity, productions of reactive oxygen species (ROS), kidney function including serum blood urea nitrogen (BUN), creatinine clearance (Ccr), and urinary protein excretion, morphology of glomerulus were determined in vitro or in vivo. Exposure of cultured human glomerulus mesangial cells (HGMCs) to BBR time- or dose-dependently activates AMPK by increasing the thr172 phosphorylation and its activities. Inhibition of LKB1 by siRNA or mutant abolished BBR-induced AMPK activation. Incubation of cells with high glucose (HG, 30 mM) markedly induced the oxidative stress of HGMCs, which were abolished by 5-aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide ribonucleoside, AMPK gene overexpression or BBR. Importantly, the effects induced by BBR were bypassed by AMPK siRNA transfection in HG-treated HGMCs. In animal studies, streptozotocin-induced hyperglycemia dramatically promoted glomerulosclerosis and impaired kidney function by increasing serum BUN, urinary protein excretion, and decreasing Ccr, as well as increased oxidative stress. Administration of BBR remarkably improved kidney function in wildtype mice but not in AMPKα2-deficient mice. We conclude that AMPK activation is required for BBR to improve kidney function in diabetic mice.

  20. Considerations to improve functional annotations in biological databases.

    PubMed

    Benítez-Páez, Alfonso

    2009-12-01

    Despite the great effort to design efficient systems allowing the electronic indexation of information concerning genes, proteins, structures, and interactions published daily in scientific journals, some problems are still observed in specific tasks such as functional annotation. The annotation of function is a critical issue for bioinformatic routines, such as for instance, in functional genomics and the further prediction of unknown protein function, which are highly dependent of the quality of existing annotations. Some information management systems evolve to efficiently incorporate information from large-scale projects, but often, annotation of single records from the literature is difficult and slow. In this short report, functional characterizations of a representative sample of the entire set of uncharacterized proteins from Escherichia coli K12 was compiled from Swiss-Prot, PubMed, and EcoCyc and demonstrate a functional annotation deficit in biological databases. Some issues are postulated as causes of the lack of annotation, and different solutions are evaluated and proposed to avoid them. The hope is that as a consequence of these observations, there will be new impetus to improve the speed and quality of functional annotation and ultimately provide updated, reliable information to the scientific community.

  1. Loss of atrial contractility is primary cause of atrial dilatation during first days of atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Schotten, Ulrich; de Haan, Sunniva; Neuberger, Hans-Ruprecht; Eijsbouts, Sabine; Blaauw, Yuri; Tieleman, Robert; Allessie, Maurits

    2004-11-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) induces a progressive dilatation of the atria which in turn might promote the arrhythmia. The mechanism of atrial dilatation during AF is not known. To test the hypothesis that loss of atrial contractile function is a primary cause of atrial dilatation during the first days of AF, eight goats were chronically instrumented with epicardial electrodes, a pressure transducer in the right atrium, and piezoelectric crystals to measure right atrial diameter. AF was induced with the use of repetitive burst pacing. Atrial contractility was assessed during sinus rhythm, atrial pacing (160-, 300-, and 400-ms cycle length), and electrically induced AF. The compliance of the fibrillating right atrium was measured during unloading the atria with diuretics and loading with 1 liter of saline. All measurements were repeated after 6, 12, and 24 h of AF and then once a day during the first 5 days of AF. Recovery of the observed changes after spontaneous cardioversion was also studied. After 5 days of AF, atrial contractility during sinus rhythm or slow atrial pacing was greatly reduced. During rapid pacing (160 ms) or AF, the amplitude of the atrial pressure waves had declined to 20% of control. The compliance of the fibrillating atria increased twofold, whereas the right atrial pressure was unchanged. As a result, the mean right atrial diameter increased by approximately 12%. All changes were reversible within 3 days of sinus rhythm. We conclude that atrial dilatation during the first days of AF is due to an increase in atrial compliance caused by loss of atrial contractility during AF. Atrial compliance and size are restored when atrial contractility recovers after cardioversion of AF.

  2. Experimental evidence and mathematical modeling of thermal effects on human colonic smooth muscle contractility.

    PubMed

    Altomare, A; Gizzi, A; Guarino, M P L; Loppini, A; Cocca, S; Dipaola, M; Alloni, R; Cicala, M; Filippi, S

    2014-07-01

    It has been shown, in animal models, that gastrointestinal tract (GIT) motility is influenced by temperature; nevertheless, the basic mechanism governing thermal GIT smooth muscle responses has not been fully investigated. Studies based on physiologically tuned mathematical models have predicted that thermal inhomogeneity may induce an electrochemical destabilization of peristaltic activity. In the present study, the effect of thermal cooling on human colonic muscle strip (HCMS) contractility was studied. HCMSs were obtained from disease-free margins of resected segments for cancer. After removal of the mucosa and serosa layers, strips were mounted in separate chambers. After 30 min, spontaneous contractions developed, which were measured using force displacement transducers. Temperature was changed every hour (37, 34, and 31°C). The effect of cooling was analyzed on mean contractile activity, oscillation amplitude, frequency, and contraction to ACh (10(-5) M). At 37°C, HCMSs developed a stable phasic contraction (~0.02 Hz) with a significant ACh-elicited mean contractile response (31% and 22% compared with baseline in the circular and longitudinal axis, respectively). At a lower bath temperature, higher mean contractile amplitude was observed, and it increased in the presence of ACh (78% and 43% higher than the basal tone in the circular and longitudinal axis, respectively, at 31°C). A simplified thermochemomechanical model was tuned on experimental data characterizing the stress state coupling the intracellular Ca(2+) concentration to tissue temperature. In conclusion, acute thermal cooling affects colonic muscular function. Further studies are needed to establish the exact mechanisms involved to better understand clinical consequences of hypothermia on intestinal contractile activity.

  3. Predicting changes in cardiac myocyte contractility during early drug discovery with in vitro assays

    SciTech Connect

    Morton, M.J.; Armstrong, D.; Abi Gerges, N.; Bridgland-Taylor, M.; Pollard, C.E.; Bowes, J.; Valentin, J.-P.

    2014-09-01

    Cardiovascular-related adverse drug effects are a major concern for the pharmaceutical industry. Activity of an investigational drug at the L-type calcium channel could manifest in a number of ways, including changes in cardiac contractility. The aim of this study was to define which of the two assay technologies – radioligand-binding or automated electrophysiology – was most predictive of contractility effects in an in vitro myocyte contractility assay. The activity of reference and proprietary compounds at the L-type calcium channel was measured by radioligand-binding assays, conventional patch-clamp, automated electrophysiology, and by measurement of contractility in canine isolated cardiac myocytes. Activity in the radioligand-binding assay at the L-type Ca channel phenylalkylamine binding site was most predictive of an inotropic effect in the canine cardiac myocyte assay. The sensitivity was 73%, specificity 83% and predictivity 78%. The radioligand-binding assay may be run at a single test concentration and potency estimated. The least predictive assay was automated electrophysiology which showed a significant bias when compared with other assay formats. Given the importance of the L-type calcium channel, not just in cardiac function, but also in other organ systems, a screening strategy emerges whereby single concentration ligand-binding can be performed early in the discovery process with sufficient predictivity, throughput and turnaround time to influence chemical design and address a significant safety-related liability, at relatively low cost. - Highlights: • The L-type calcium channel is a significant safety liability during drug discovery. • Radioligand-binding to the L-type calcium channel can be measured in vitro. • The assay can be run at a single test concentration as part of a screening cascade. • This measurement is highly predictive of changes in cardiac myocyte contractility.

  4. Improved regional ventricular function after successful surgical revascularization

    SciTech Connect

    Brundage, B.H.; Massie, B.M.; Botvinick, E.H.

    1984-04-01

    Left ventricular segments with reversible asynergy at rest demonstrate reversible myocardial perfusion defects on exercise thallium-201 scintigrams. To determine if improved perfusion eliminates asynergy at rest, 23 patients with angina (stable in 21, unstable in 2) were studied before and after coronary artery bypass surgery. All patients underwent exercise myocardial perfusion scintigraphy, contrast ventriculography and coronary arteriography before and after surgery. Selective graft angiography was performed during the postoperative catheterization to determine graft patency. Segmental ventricular function was quantitated by a regional fraction method. The scintigrams were divided into five regions and compared with the corresponding regions of the ventriculogram. Seventy-one of a possible 142 ventricular segments exhibited exercise-induced perfusion deficits. Preoperative regional ejection fraction was normal in 42 of these segments and abnormal in 29. Postoperatively, in 19 of the abnormal segments, function improved or normalized. All these segments had improved perfusion during exercise after surgery and were supplied by a patent bypass graft. Nine of the 10 segments in which abnormal wall motion persisted postoperatively continued to have exercise-induced perfusion deficits, and 9 of the 10 segments were supplied by an occluded or stenotic graft or one with poor run off. Of the 42 segments with normal wall motion preoperatively, 30 had improved perfusion after surgery and 35 maintained normal function. This study indicates that asynergy at rest is permanently reversed after coronary bypass surgery if improved myocardial perfusion can be documented. These findings are consistent with but do not prove the concept that reversible rest asynergy may reflect chronic ischemia or a prolonged effect from previous ischemic episodes.

  5. The Structural Basis of Functional Improvement in Response to Human Umbilical Cord Blood Stem Cell Transplantation in Hearts with Post-Infarct LV Remodeling

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yong; Ye, Lei; Zhong, Jia; Li, Xin; Yan, Chen; Chandler, Margaret P.; Calvin, Steve; Xiao, Feng; Negia, Mesfin; Low, Walter C.; Zhang, Jianyi; Yu, Xin

    2015-01-01

    Cellular therapy for myocardial repair has been one of the most intensely investigated interventional strategies for acute myocardium infarction. Although the therapeutic potential of stem cells has been demonstrated in various studies, the underlying mechanisms for such improvement are poorly understood. In the present study, we investigated the long-term effects of stem cell therapy on both myocardial fiber organization and regional contractile function using a rat model of post-infarct remodeling. Human non-hematopoietic umbilical cord blood stem cells (nh-UCBSCs) were administered via tail vein to rats 2 days after infarct surgery. Animals were maintained without immunosuppressive therapy. In vivo and ex vivo MR imaging was performed on infarct hearts ten months after cell transplantation. Compared to the age-matched rats exposed to the identical surgery, both global and regional cardiac function of the nh-UCBSC-treated hearts, such as ejection fraction, ventricular strain and torsion, were significantly improved. More importantly, the treated hearts exhibited preserved fiber orientation and water diffusivities that were similar to those in sham-operated control hearts. These data provide the first evidence that nh-UCBSC treatment may prevent/delay untoward structural remodeling in post-infarct hearts, which supports the improved LV function observed in vivo in the absence of immunosuppression, suggesting a beneficial paracrine effect that occurred with the cellular therapy. PMID:24332083

  6. Improving Mitochondrial Function Protects Bumblebees from Neonicotinoid Pesticides

    PubMed Central

    Powner, Michael B.; Salt, Thomas E.; Hogg, Chris; Jeffery, Glen

    2016-01-01

    Global pollination is threatened by declining insect pollinator populations that may be linked to neonicotinoid pesticide use. Neonicotinoids over stimulate neurons and depolarize their mitochondria, producing immobility and death. However, mitochondrial function can be improved by near infrared light absorbed by cytochrome c oxidase in mitochondrial respiration. In flies, daily exposure to 670nm light throughout life increases average lifespan and aged mobility, and reduces systemic inflammation. Here we treat bumble bees with Imidacloprid a common neonicotinoid. This undermined ATP and rapidly induced immobility and reduced visual function and survival. Bees exposed to insecticide and daily to 670nm light showed corrected ATP levels and significantly improved mobility allowing them to feed. Physiological recordings from eyes revealed that light exposure corrected deficits induced by the pesticide. Overall, death rates in bees exposed to insecticide but also given 670nm light were indistinguishable from controls. When Imidacloprid and light exposure were withdrawn, survival was maintained. Bees and insects generally cannot see deep red light so it does not disturb their behaviour. Hence, we show that deep red light exposure that improves mitochondrial function, reverses the sensory and motor deficits induced by Imidacloprid. These results may have important implications as light delivery is economic and can be placed in hives/colonies. PMID:27846310

  7. Improving Mitochondrial Function Protects Bumblebees from Neonicotinoid Pesticides.

    PubMed

    Powner, Michael B; Salt, Thomas E; Hogg, Chris; Jeffery, Glen

    2016-01-01

    Global pollination is threatened by declining insect pollinator populations that may be linked to neonicotinoid pesticide use. Neonicotinoids over stimulate neurons and depolarize their mitochondria, producing immobility and death. However, mitochondrial function can be improved by near infrared light absorbed by cytochrome c oxidase in mitochondrial respiration. In flies, daily exposure to 670nm light throughout life increases average lifespan and aged mobility, and reduces systemic inflammation. Here we treat bumble bees with Imidacloprid a common neonicotinoid. This undermined ATP and rapidly induced immobility and reduced visual function and survival. Bees exposed to insecticide and daily to 670nm light showed corrected ATP levels and significantly improved mobility allowing them to feed. Physiological recordings from eyes revealed that light exposure corrected deficits induced by the pesticide. Overall, death rates in bees exposed to insecticide but also given 670nm light were indistinguishable from controls. When Imidacloprid and light exposure were withdrawn, survival was maintained. Bees and insects generally cannot see deep red light so it does not disturb their behaviour. Hence, we show that deep red light exposure that improves mitochondrial function, reverses the sensory and motor deficits induced by Imidacloprid. These results may have important implications as light delivery is economic and can be placed in hives/colonies.

  8. Inducible nitric oxide synthase in rat hepatic lipocytes and the effect of nitric oxide on lipocyte contractility.

    PubMed Central

    Rockey, D C; Chung, J J

    1995-01-01

    In liver injury, perisinusoidal cells known as lipocytes (Ito cells) undergo "activation," acquiring smooth muscle-like features and a contractile phenotype. To assess whether contraction of these cells is regulated by nitric oxide (NO), we examined the production of NO by lipocytes and the effect of NO on lipocyte contractility. Cultured lipocytes were exposed to cytokines and/or LPS. Single agents had little or no effect on the level of inducible NO synthase (iNOS) mRNA. However, interleukin-1 beta (IL-1 beta), tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), or LPS in combination with interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma) stimulated iNOS mRNA, which was present within 4 h after exposure. iNOS mRNA levels were paralleled by changes in nitrite (a metabolic product of NO). Intraperitoneal administration of IFN-gamma, TNF-alpha, and LPS led to rapid induction of iNOS mRNA in lipocytes, confirming in vivo the culture findings. Ligation of the common hepatic bile duct, which induces periportal-based liver injury, stimulated iNOS mRNA in lipocytes. Transforming growth factor-beta 1 decreased IFN-gamma/TNF-alpha--stimulated iNOS mRNA and nitrite. Finally, the effect of NO on lipocyte contractility was examined. In cells incubated with IFN-gamma and TNF-alpha, the contractile response to either serum or endothelin-1 was blocked. Contraction was restored entirely by an inhibitor of NO synthase, NG-monomethylarginine. Furthermore, 8-bromoguanosine 3':5'-cyclic monophosphate and sodium nitroprusside inhibited lipocyte contractility, consistent with the effect of NO induced by cytokines. We conclude that NO is a potent modulator of lipocyte contractility and may regulate this function by autocrine (or intracrine) mechanisms. Moreover, NO may play an important role in liver injury, countering the effect of contractile agonists on lipocytes. Images PMID:7533786

  9. Modification of biochar for functionality improvement in soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zwart, Kor; Kuikman, Peter; Ross, Anrew; Takaya, Chibi; Singh, Surjit; Kocaturk, Pelin; Visser, Rian

    2014-05-01

    Application of biochar to soils is generally considered and practiced in order to improve specific soil functions such as CEC, moisture and nutrient retention and providing additional habitat for micro-organisms. Improvement of these soil functions should lead to a higher crop yield. This would be added value to the long term sequestration of carbon in soils and contribution to renewable energy from producing and using biochar. The concept of using biochar for soil amendment is predicated on biochar behaving in a similar manner as soil organic matter (SOM) does. However, if one critically compares the properties of biochar with the properties of SOM, it is evident that biochar is rather different from SOM [Zwart, 2013 ;Zwart & Kuikman, 2013]. We have has produced a range of biochar from different feedstock using pyrolysis, gasification and hydrothermal carbonisation resulting in chars with significantly different properties. The project also investigates and tested several possibilities for improving the functionality of biochar in soils by either(i) selection of feedstock, (ii), selection of processing conditions and (iii) chemical and physical modification of biochar during and after the production process. Post modification includes the chemical treatment of biochars with either H2O2, KOH, H2SO4 and transitional metals such as Fe and investigates their effect on surface functionality, porosity, surface area, CEC and phosphate sorption. The influence of the addition of chemical modifiers and oxidants during pyrolysis and gasification has also been investigated and their effect on surface functionality determined using similar techniques. The influence of the original biomass structure on the morphology of the resultant biochars has been investigated using scanning electron microscopy.

  10. Corticosteroid transdermal delivery significantly improves arthritis pain and functional disability.

    PubMed

    Iannitti, Tommaso; McDermott, Michael F; Laurino, Carmen; Malagoli, Andrea; Palmieri, Beniamino

    2017-02-01

    Arthritis is characterized by pain and functional limitation affecting the patients' quality of life. We performed a clinical study to investigate the efficacy of a betamethasone valerate medicated plaster (Betesil) in improving pain and functional disability in patients with arthritis and osteoarthritis. We enrolled 104 patients affected by osteoarthritis (n = 40) or arthritis (n = 64) in different joints. Patients received diclofenac sodium cream (2 g, four times a day) or a 2.25-mg dose of Betesil applied to the painful joint every night before bedtime for 10 days. Pain and functional disability were assessed, by the Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) and Western Ontario McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) scores. Redness was assessed by clinical inspection, and edema by the "fovea sign" method. C-reactive protein (CRP) was also measured; CRP can be used to cost-effectively monitor the pharmacological treatment efficacy and is increased during the acute-phase response, returning to physiological values after tissue recovery and functional restoration. All measurements were at baseline and at 10-day follow-up. At 10-day follow-up, a greater improvement in VAS and WOMAC pain and WOMAC stiffness and functional limitation scores from baseline was observed in patients treated with Betesil compared with diclofenac (all p < 0.01). At 10-day follow-up, improvement in redness, edema, and CRP levels from baseline was also greater in patients treated with Betesil compared with diclofenac (all p < 0.01). This study demonstrates the safety and efficacy of transdermal delivery of betamethasone valerate in patients affected by arthritis and osteoarthritis.

  11. Enzyme functional evolution through improved catalysis of ancestrally nonpreferred substrates.

    PubMed

    Huang, Ruiqi; Hippauf, Frank; Rohrbeck, Diana; Haustein, Maria; Wenke, Katrin; Feike, Janie; Sorrelle, Noah; Piechulla, Birgit; Barkman, Todd J

    2012-02-21

    In this study, we investigated the role for ancestral functional variation that may be selected upon to generate protein functional shifts using ancestral protein resurrection, statistical tests for positive selection, forward and reverse evolutionary genetics, and enzyme functional assays. Data are presented for three instances of protein functional change in the salicylic acid/benzoic acid/theobromine (SABATH) lineage of plant secondary metabolite-producing enzymes. In each case, we demonstrate that ancestral nonpreferred activities were improved upon in a daughter enzyme after gene duplication, and that these functional shifts were likely coincident with positive selection. Both forward and reverse mutagenesis studies validate the impact of one or a few sites toward increasing activity with ancestrally nonpreferred substrates. In one case, we document the occurrence of an evolutionary reversal of an active site residue that reversed enzyme properties. Furthermore, these studies show that functionally important amino acid replacements result in substrate discrimination as reflected in evolutionary changes in the specificity constant (k(cat)/K(M)) for competing substrates, even though adaptive substitutions may affect K(M) and k(cat) separately. In total, these results indicate that nonpreferred, or even latent, ancestral protein activities may be coopted at later times to become the primary or preferred protein activities.

  12. Enzyme functional evolution through improved catalysis of ancestrally nonpreferred substrates

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Ruiqi; Hippauf, Frank; Rohrbeck, Diana; Haustein, Maria; Wenke, Katrin; Feike, Janie; Sorrelle, Noah; Piechulla, Birgit; Barkman, Todd J.

    2012-01-01

    In this study, we investigated the role for ancestral functional variation that may be selected upon to generate protein functional shifts using ancestral protein resurrection, statistical tests for positive selection, forward and reverse evolutionary genetics, and enzyme functional assays. Data are presented for three instances of protein functional change in the salicylic acid/benzoic acid/theobromine (SABATH) lineage of plant secondary metabolite-producing enzymes. In each case, we demonstrate that ancestral nonpreferred activities were improved upon in a daughter enzyme after gene duplication, and that these functional shifts were likely coincident with positive selection. Both forward and reverse mutagenesis studies validate the impact of one or a few sites toward increasing activity with ancestrally nonpreferred substrates. In one case, we document the occurrence of an evolutionary reversal of an active site residue that reversed enzyme properties. Furthermore, these studies show that functionally important amino acid replacements result in substrate discrimination as reflected in evolutionary changes in the specificity constant (kcat/KM) for competing substrates, even though adaptive substitutions may affect KM and kcat separately. In total, these results indicate that nonpreferred, or even latent, ancestral protein activities may be coopted at later times to become the primary or preferred protein activities. PMID:22315396

  13. Improving functional disability and cognition in Parkinson disease

    PubMed Central

    Peña, Javier; García-Gorostiaga, Inés; Gomez-Beldarrain, Maria Angeles; Díez-Cirarda, María; Ojeda, Natalia

    2014-01-01

    Objectives: To examine the efficacy of an integrative cognitive training program (REHACOP) to improve cognition, clinical symptoms, and functional disability of patients with Parkinson disease (PD). Methods: Forty-two patients diagnosed with PD in Hoehn & Yahr stages 1 to 3 were randomly assigned to either the cognitive training group (REHACOP) or the control group (occupational activities) for 3 months (3 sessions, 60 min/wk). Primary outcomes were change on processing speed, verbal memory, visual memory, executive functioning, and theory of mind. Secondary outcomes included changes on neuropsychiatric symptoms, depression, apathy, and functional disability. The trial was registered with clinicaltrials.gov (NCT02118480). Results: No baseline group differences were found. Bootstrapped analysis of variance results showed significant differences in the mean change scores between the REHACOP group and control group in processing speed (0.13 [SE = 0.07] vs −0.15 [SE = 0.09], p = 0.025), visual memory (0.10 [SE = 0.10] vs −0.24 [SE = 0.09], p = 0.011), theory of mind (1.00 [SE = 0.37] vs −0.27 [SE = 0.29], p = 0.013), and functional disability (−5.15 [SE = 1.35] vs 0.53 [SE = 1.49], p = 0.012). Conclusions: Patients with PD receiving cognitive training with REHACOP demonstrated statistically significant and clinically meaningful changes in processing speed, visual memory, theory of mind, and functional disability. Future studies should consider the long-term effect of this type of intervention. These findings support the integration of cognitive training into the standard of care for patients with PD. Classification of evidence: This study provides Class II evidence that for patients with PD, an integrative cognitive training program improves processing speed, visual memory, theory of mind, and functional disability. PMID:25361785

  14. Activities and Programs That Improve Children’s Executive Functions

    PubMed Central

    Diamond, Adele

    2014-01-01

    Executive functions (EFs; e.g., reasoning, working memory, and self-control) can be improved. Good news indeed, since EFs are critical for school and job success and for mental and physical health. Various activities appear to improve children’s EFs. The best evidence exists for computer-based training, traditional martial arts, and two school curricula. Weaker evidence, though strong enough to pass peer review, exists for aerobics, yoga, mindfulness, and other school curricula. Here I address what can be learned from the research thus far, including that EFs need to be progressively challenged as children improve and that repeated practice is key. Children devote time and effort to activities they love; therefore, EF interventions might use children’s motivation to advantage. Focusing narrowly on EFs or aerobic activity alone appears not to be as efficacious in improving EFs as also addressing children’s emotional, social, and character development (as do martial arts, yoga, and curricula shown to improve EFs). Children with poorer EFs benefit more from training; hence, training might provide them an opportunity to “catch up” with their peers and not be left behind. Remaining questions include how long benefits of EF training last and who benefits most from which activities. PMID:25328287

  15. Contractile dysfunction of the shoulder (rotator cuff tendinopathy): an overview.

    PubMed

    Littlewood, Chris

    2012-11-01

    It is now over a decade since the features defining a contractile dysfunction of the shoulder were first reported. Since this time, some progress has been made to better understand this mechanical syndrome. In response to these developments, this narrative review will explore current understanding in relation to pathology, diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis of this syndrome with reference to literature specifically relating to contractile dysfunction but also literature relating to rotator cuff tendinopathy where necessary. The review not only identifies the strengths of the mechanical diagnosis and therapy approach with reference to a contractile dysfunction of the shoulder but also identifies where further progress needs to be made.

  16. Electrochemically polymerized conjugated polymer films: Stability improvement and surface functionalization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Bin

    Conjugated polymers have been widely used in various applications including organic solar cells, electrochromic devices, chemical sensors, and biomedical devices. Poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) (PEDOT) and its derivatives have received considerable interest because of their low oxidation potential, relatively high chemical stability, and high conductivity. Electrochemical deposition is a convenient method for precisely fabricating conjugated polymer thin films. Here, we report the stability improvement and surface functionalization of electrochemically polymerized PEDOT films. The long-term performance of PEDOT coatings is limited by their relatively poor stability on various inorganic substrates. Two different methods were used to improve the stability of PEDOT coatings, one involved using carboxylic acid functionalized EDOT (EDOT-acid) as adhesion promoter. EDOT-acid molecules were chemically bonded onto activated metal oxide substrates via chemisorption. PEDOT was then polymerized onto the EDOT-acid modified substrates, forming covalently bonded coatings. An aggressive ultrasonication test confirmed the significantly improved adhesion of the PEDOT films on electrodes with EDOT-acid treatment over those without treatment. The other method was to use an octa-ProDOT-functionalized POSS derivative (POSSProDOT) as cross-linker. PEDOT copolymer films were electrochemically deposited with various concentrations of POSS-ProDOT. The optical, morphological and electrochemical properties of the copolymer films could be systematically tuned with the incorporation of POSS-ProDOT. Significantly enhanced electrochemical and mechanical stability of the copolymers were observed at intermediate levels of POSS-ProDOT content (3.1 wt%) via chronic stimulation tests. Surface functionalization of conducting polymer films provides a potential means for systematically tailoring their chemical and physical properties. We have synthesized, polymerized and characterized a dialkene-functionalized

  17. In vitro drug testing based on contractile activity of C2C12 cells in an epigenetic drug model

    PubMed Central

    Ikeda, Kazushi; Ito, Akira; Imada, Ryusuke; Sato, Masanori; Kawabe, Yoshinori; Kamihira, Masamichi

    2017-01-01

    Skeletal muscle tissue engineering holds great promise for pharmacological studies. Herein, we demonstrated an in vitro drug testing system using tissue-engineered skeletal muscle constructs. In response to epigenetic drugs, myotube differentiation of C2C12 myoblast cells was promoted in two-dimensional cell cultures, but the levels of contractile force generation of tissue-engineered skeletal muscle constructs prepared by three-dimensional cell cultures were not correlated with the levels of myotube differentiation in two-dimensional cell cultures. In contrast, sarcomere formation and contractile activity in two-dimensional cell cultures were highly correlated with contractile force generation of tissue-engineered skeletal muscle constructs. Among the epigenetic drugs tested, trichostatin A significantly improved contractile force generation of tissue-engineered skeletal muscle constructs. Follistatin expression was also enhanced by trichostatin A treatment, suggesting the importance of follistatin in sarcomere formation of muscular tissues. These observations indicate that contractility data are indispensable for in vitro drug screening. PMID:28300163

  18. Phosphonic Acid-Functionalized Polyurethane Dispersions with Improved Adhesion Properties.

    PubMed

    Breucker, Laura; Landfester, Katharina; Taden, Andreas

    2015-11-11

    A facile route to phosphorus-functionalized polyurethane dispersions (P-PUDs) with improved adhesion properties is presented. (Bis)phosphonic acid moieties serve as adhesion promoting sites that are covalently attached via an end-capping reaction to isocyanate-reactive polyurethane particles under aqueous conditions. The synthetic approach circumvents solubility issues, offers great flexibility in terms of polyurethane composition, and allows for the synthesis of semicrystalline systems with thermomechanical response due to reversible physical cross-linking. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) is used to investigate the effect of functionalization on the semicrystallinity. The end-capping conversion was determined via inductively-coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES) and was surprisingly found to be almost independent of the stoichiometry of reaction, suggesting an adsorption-dominated process. Particle charge detection (PCD) experiments reveal that a dense surface coverage of phosphonic acid groups can be attained and that, at high functionalization degrees, the phosphonic adhesion moieties are partially dragged inside the colloidal P-PUD particle. Quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation (QCMD) investigations conducted with hydroxyapatite (HAP) and stainless steel sensors as model surfaces show a greatly enhanced affinity of the aqueous P-PUDs and furthermore indicate polymer chain rearrangements and autonomous film formation under wet conditions. Due to their facile synthesis, significantly improved adhesion, and variable film properties, P-PUD systems such as the one described here are believed to be of great interest for multiple applications, e.g., adhesives, paints, anticorrosion, or dentistry.

  19. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy improves cognitive functioning after brain injury.

    PubMed

    Liu, Su; Shen, Guangyu; Deng, Shukun; Wang, Xiubin; Wu, Qinfeng; Guo, Aisong

    2013-12-15

    Hyperbaric oxygen therapy has been widely applied and recognized in the treatment of brain injury; however, the correlation between the protective effect of hyperbaric oxygen therapy and changes of metabolites in the brain remains unclear. To investigate the effect and potential mechanism of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on cognitive functioning in rats, we established traumatic brain injury models using Feeney's free falling method. We treated rat models with hyperbaric oxygen therapy at 0.2 MPa for 60 minutes per day. The Morris water maze test for spatial navigation showed that the average escape latency was significantly prolonged and cognitive function decreased in rats with brain injury. After treatment with hyperbaric oxygen therapy for 1 and 2 weeks, the rats' spatial learning and memory abilities were improved. Hydrogen proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy analysis showed that the N-acetylaspartate/creatine ratio in the hippocampal CA3 region was significantly increased at 1 week, and the N-acetylaspartate/choline ratio was significantly increased at 2 weeks after hyperbaric oxygen therapy. Nissl staining and immunohistochemical staining showed that the number of nerve cells and Nissl bodies in the hippocampal CA3 region was significantly increased, and glial fibrillary acidic protein positive cells were decreased after a 2-week hyperbaric oxygen therapy treatment. Our findings indicate that hyperbaric oxygen therapy significantly improves cognitive functioning in rats with traumatic brain injury, and the potential mechanism is mediated by metabolic changes and nerve cell restoration in the hippocampal CA3 region.

  20. TRPA1-dependent regulation of bladder detrusor smooth muscle contractility in normal and type I diabetic rats

    PubMed Central

    Philyppov, Igor B.; Paduraru, Oksana N.; Gulak, Kseniya L.; Skryma, Roman; Prevarskaya, Natalia; Shuba, Yaroslav M.

    2016-01-01

    TRPA1 is a Ca2+-permeable cation channel that is activated by painful low temperatures (˂17 °C), irritating chemicals, reactive metabolites and mediators of inflammation. In the bladder TRPA1 is predominantly expressed in sensory afferent nerve endings, where it mediates sensory transduction. The contractile effect of its activation on detrusor smooth muscle (DSM) is explained by the release from sensory afferents of inflammatory factors – tachykinins and prostaglandins, which cause smooth muscle cell contraction. Diabetes is a systemic disease, with common complications being diabetic cystopathies and urinary incontinence. However, data on how diabetes affects bladder contractility associated with TRPA1 activation are not available. In this study, by using a rat model with streptozotocin-induced type I diabetes, contractility measurements of DSM strips in response to TRPA1-activating and modulating pharmacological agents and assessment of TRPA1 mRNA expression in bladder-innervating dorsal root ganglia, we have shown that diabetes enhances the TRPA1-dependent mechanism involved in bladder DSM contractility. This is not due to changes in TRPA1 expression, but mainly due to the general inflammatory reaction caused by diabetes. The latter leads to an increase in cyclooxygenase-2-dependent prostaglandin synthesis through the mechanisms associated with substance P activity. This results in the enhanced functional coupling between the tachykinin and prostanoid systems, and the concomitant increase of their impact on DSM contractility in response to TRPA1 activation. PMID:26935999

  1. TRPA1-dependent regulation of bladder detrusor smooth muscle contractility in normal and type I diabetic rats.

    PubMed

    Philyppov, Igor B; Paduraru, Oksana N; Gulak, Kseniya L; Skryma, Roman; Prevarskaya, Natalia; Shuba, Yaroslav M

    2016-01-01

    TRPA1 is a Ca(2+)-permeable cation channel that is activated by painful low temperatures (<17°C), irritating chemicals, reactive metabolites and mediators of inflammation. In the bladder TRPA1 is predominantly expressed in sensory afferent nerve endings, where it mediates sensory transduction. The contractile effect of its activation on detrusor smooth muscle (DSM) is explained by the release from sensory afferents of inflammatory factors - tachykinins and prostaglandins, which cause smooth muscle cell contraction. Diabetes is a systemic disease, with common complications being diabetic cystopathies and urinary incontinence. However, data on how diabetes affects bladder contractility associated with TRPA1 activation are not available. In this study, by using a rat model with streptozotocin-induced type I diabetes, contractility measurements of DSM strips in response to TRPA1-activating and modulating pharmacological agents and assessment of TRPA1 mRNA expression in bladder-innervating dorsal root ganglia, we have shown that diabetes enhances the TRPA1-dependent mechanism involved in bladder DSM contractility. This is not due to changes in TRPA1 expression, but mainly due to the general inflammatory reaction caused by diabetes. The latter leads to an increase in cyclooxygenase-2-dependent prostaglandin synthesis through the mechanisms associated with substance P activity. This results in the enhanced functional coupling between the tachykinin and prostanoid systems, and the concomitant increase of their impact on DSM contractility in response to TRPA1 activation.

  2. Modulatory effect of three antibiotics on uterus bovine contractility in vitro and likely therapeutic approaches in reproduction.

    PubMed

    Piccinno, M; Rizzo, A; Maselli, M A; Derosa, M; Sciorsci, R L

    2014-12-01

    This in vitro study investigates the modulatory effect of three antibiotics (amoxicillin, enrofloxacin, and rifaximin) on contractility of the bovine uterine tissue in follicular and luteal phases. The effects of these antibiotics at three single doses (10(-6), 10(-5), and 10(-4) M) on their basal contractility were evaluated in isolated organ bath. The functionality of the strip throughout the experiment was evaluated by a dose of carbachol (10(-5) M); the obtained effect had to be repeatable (difference of ≤20%) that is comparable to that induced by the previous administration of the same substance. The results demonstrate the different modulatory activities of these antibiotics on uterine contractility in follicular and luteal phases. The effects induced by amoxicillin and enrofloxacin are opposite: the first relaxes and the second increases the uterine contractility in both cycle phases. Instead, the activity of rifaximin varies depending on the phase of estrous cycle: it increases in the follicular phase and relaxes in the luteal phase. The obtained data provide the hypothesis of possible implications of these drugs in the pharmacologic modulation of uterine contractions. Their action at this level, associated with their specific antimicrobial effects, could suggest using these antibiotics for the treatment of diseases related to postpartum or infections that may occur in pregnant cattle, by virtue of their effects on myometrial contractility too.

  3. Improvement of endothelial function following initiation of testosterone replacement therapy

    PubMed Central

    Tucky, Barbara; Polackwich, Allan S.

    2016-01-01

    Background Isolated recent studies have suggested an increased risk of heart attack as early as 3 months following testosterone replacement therapy (TRT). Such a rapid risk increase would likely require rapid deterioration of arterial endothelial function. Our goal was to assess arterial endothelial function in hypogonadal men prior to and at least 3 months after initiation of TRT. Methods Adult men were consented if they had symptoms of hypogonadism, a total testosterone <350 ng/dL, and planned to begin TRT. Endothelial function was non-invasively assessed using the EndoPAT-2000 machine. We measured the augmentation index (AI) (normal <3%), a measure of arterial stiffness and reactive hyperemia index (RHI), a measure of endothelial vasodilation (normal >1.69). Prior studies suggest that a 10% level of day-to-day test variability is expected. Endothelial function was reassessed at the next clinic visit, between 3 and 6 months if the patients were compliant with therapy. Changes in continuous variables were assessed with the paired t test. Results Twenty-three patients were consented with a mean age of 52.7 years (range, 34–68 years) and starting testosterone 196.9 ng/dL (range, 35–339 ng/dL). There was a history of diabetes in four, hypertension in ten and coronary artery disease in five. Mean RHI was 1.67±0.37 (70% were abnormal) and mean AI was 2.57%±14.0% (39% were abnormal). There were no cardiac events. At follow-up 20 patients were compliant with therapy and retested. Mean testosterone increased from 203 to 511 (P<0.0001). Mean RHI improved from 1.70 to 2.14 (P=0.01). Mean AI improved from 2.9% to −1.75% (P=0.01). In four men RHI worsened but in each case less than the 10% error of the test. No man had worsened AI. Conclusions Men with symptomatic hypogonadism often have abnormal arterial endothelial function. Following TRT, endothelial function either remains unchanged or improves. PMID:28078212

  4. Improving executive functioning in children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Nash, Kelly; Stevens, Sara; Greenbaum, Rachel; Weiner, Judith; Koren, Gideon; Rovet, Joanne

    2015-01-01

    An extensive body of literature has documented executive function (EF) impairments in children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD); however, few studies have aimed specifically at improving EF. One treatment program that shows promise for children with FASD is the Alert Program for Self-Regulation®, which is a 12-week treatment specifically designed to target self-regulation, a component of EF. The present study sought to examine if Alert would produce improvements in self-regulation that would generalize to other aspects of EF, behavior, and social skills in children with FASD. Twenty-five children aged 8-12 years diagnosed with an FASD were assigned in alternating sequence to either an immediate treatment (TXT) or a delayed treatment control (DTC) group. Both groups received a comprehensive evaluation of EF at baseline and upon completing therapy (TXT), or after a 12- to 14-week interval from baseline (DTC). Parents also completed questionnaires assessing EF and behavior at both time points. For the TXT group only, parent questionnaires were readministered at 6-month follow-up. At the 12-week follow-up, the TXT group displayed significant improvements in inhibitory control and social cognition. Parents of children in the TXT group reported improved behavioral and emotional regulation, as well as reduced externalizing behavior problems. These behavioral improvements along with further improved parent-rated inhibitory control was maintained at the 6-month follow-up. The EF disabilities in children with FASD can be remediated through a targeted treatment approach aimed at facilitating self-regulation skills.

  5. Improvement in cerebral function with treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder.

    PubMed

    Roy, Michael J; Francis, Jennifer; Friedlander, Joshua; Banks-Williams, Lisa; Lande, Raymond G; Taylor, Patricia; Blair, James; McLellan, Jennifer; Law, Wendy; Tarpley, Vanita; Patt, Ivy; Yu, Henry; Mallinger, Alan; Difede, Joann; Rizzo, Albert; Rothbaum, Barbara

    2010-10-01

    Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) are signature illnesses of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, but current diagnostic and therapeutic measures for these conditions are suboptimal. In our study, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is used to try to differentiate military service members with: PTSD and mTBI, PTSD alone, mTBI alone, and neither PTSD nor mTBI. Those with PTSD are then randomized to virtual reality exposure therapy or imaginal exposure. fMRI is repeated after treatment and along with the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale (CAPS) and Clinical Global Impression (CGI) scores to compare with baseline. Twenty subjects have completed baseline fMRI scans, including four controls and one mTBI only; of 15 treated for PTSD, eight completed posttreatment scans. Most subjects have been male (93%) and Caucasian (83%), with a mean age of 34. Significant improvements are evident on fMRI scans, and corroborated by CGI scores, but CAPS scores improvements are modest. In conclusion, CGI scores and fMRI scans indicate significant improvement in PTSD in both treatment arms, though CAPS score improvements are less robust.

  6. Improving nonlinear modeling capabilities of functional link adaptive filters.

    PubMed

    Comminiello, Danilo; Scarpiniti, Michele; Scardapane, Simone; Parisi, Raffaele; Uncini, Aurelio

    2015-09-01

    The functional link adaptive filter (FLAF) represents an effective solution for online nonlinear modeling problems. In this paper, we take into account a FLAF-based architecture, which separates the adaptation of linear and nonlinear elements, and we focus on the nonlinear branch to improve the modeling performance. In particular, we propose a new model that involves an adaptive combination of filters downstream of the nonlinear expansion. Such combination leads to a cooperative behavior of the whole architecture, thus yielding a performance improvement, particularly in the presence of strong nonlinearities. An advanced architecture is also proposed involving the adaptive combination of multiple filters on the nonlinear branch. The proposed models are assessed in different nonlinear modeling problems, in which their effectiveness and capabilities are shown.

  7. A Short Executive Function Training Program Improves Preschoolers' Working Memory.

    PubMed

    Blakey, Emma; Carroll, Daniel J

    2015-01-01

    Cognitive training has been shown to improve executive functions (EFs) in middle childhood and adulthood. However, fewer studies have targeted the preschool years-a time when EFs undergo rapid development. The present study tested the effects of a short four session EF training program in 54 four-year-olds. The training group significantly improved their working memory from pre-training relative to an active control group. Notably, this effect extended to a task sharing few surface features with the trained tasks, and continued to be apparent 3 months later. In addition, the benefits of training extended to a measure of mathematical reasoning 3 months later, indicating that training EFs during the preschool years has the potential to convey benefits that are both long-lasting and wide-ranging.

  8. Considerations for Contractile Electroactive Polymeric Materials and Actuators

    SciTech Connect

    Rasmussen, Lenore; Erickson, Carl J.; Meixler, Lewis D.; Ascione, George; Gentile, Charles A.; Tilson, Charles; Bernasek, Stephen L.; Abelev, Esta

    2009-06-16

    Ras Labs produces electroactive polymer (EAP) based materials and actuators that bend, swell, ripple and now contract (new development) with low electric input. This is an important attribute because of the ability of contraction to produce life-like motion. The mechanism of contraction is not well understood. Radionuclide-labeled experiments were conducted to follow the movement of electrolytes and water in these EAPs when activated. Extreme temperature experiments were performed on the contractile EAPs with very favorable results. One of the biggest challenges in developing these actuators, however, is the electrode-EAP interface because of the pronounced movement of the EAP. Plasma treatments of metallic electrodes were investigated in order to improve the attachment of the embedded electrodes to the EAP material. Surface analysis, adhesive testing, and mechanical testing were conducted to test metal surfaces and metal-polymer interfaces. The nitrogen plasma treatment of titanium produced a strong metal-polymer interface; however, oxygen plasma treatment of both stainless steel and titanium produced even stronger metal-polymer interfaces. Plasma treatment of the electrodes allows for the embedded electrodes and the EAP material of the actuator to work and move as a unit, with no detachment, by significantly improving the metal-polymer interface.

  9. Note: Work function change measurement via improved Anderson method

    SciTech Connect

    Sabik, A. Gołek, F.; Antczak, G.

    2015-05-15

    We propose the modification to the Anderson method of work function change (Δϕ) measurements. In this technique, the kinetic energy of the probing electrons is already low enough for non-destructive investigation of delicate molecular systems. However, in our implementation, all electrodes including filament of the electron gun are polarized positively. As a consequence, electron bombardment of any elements of experimental system is eliminated. Our modification improves cleanliness of the ultra-high vacuum system. As an illustration of the solution capabilities, we present Δϕ of the Ag(100) surface induced by cobalt phthalocyanine layers.

  10. Note: Work function change measurement via improved Anderson method.

    PubMed

    Sabik, A; Gołek, F; Antczak, G

    2015-05-01

    We propose the modification to the Anderson method of work function change (Δϕ) measurements. In this technique, the kinetic energy of the probing electrons is already low enough for non-destructive investigation of delicate molecular systems. However, in our implementation, all electrodes including filament of the electron gun are polarized positively. As a consequence, electron bombardment of any elements of experimental system is eliminated. Our modification improves cleanliness of the ultra-high vacuum system. As an illustration of the solution capabilities, we present Δϕ of the Ag(100) surface induced by cobalt phthalocyanine layers.

  11. Short-term improvement of masticatory function after implant restoration

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Dental implants present several advantages over other tooth replacement options. However, there has been little research on masticatory function in relation to implant treatment. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to evaluate the improvement of masticatory function two weeks after implant restoration. Methods Masticatory ability was evaluated with the subjective food intake ability (FIA) and objective mixing ability index (MAI) methods. Fifty-four subjects with first and second missing molars completed the study. The subjects were asked to complete a self-reported questionnaire about 30 different food items, and to chew wax samples 10 times both before and two weeks after implant restoration. A total of 108 waxes were analyzed with an image analysis program. Results Dental implant restoration for lost molar teeth on one side increased the FIA score by 9.0% (P<0.0001). The MAI score also increased, by 14.3% after implant restoration (P<0.0001). Comparison between the good and poor mastication groups, which were subdivided based on the median MAI score before implant restoration, showed that the FIA score of the poor group was enhanced 1.1-fold while its MAI score was enhanced 2.0-fold two weeks after an implant surgery. Conclusions Using the FIA and MAI assessment methods, this study showed that masticatory function was improved two weeks after implant restoration. In particular, the enhancement of masticatory function by implant restoration was greater in patients with relatively poor initial mastication than in those with good initial mastication. PMID:26734490

  12. Astym therapy improves function and range of motion following mastectomy

    PubMed Central

    Davies, Claire C; Brockopp, Dorothy; Moe, Krista

    2016-01-01

    Hypersensitive scar tissue formation along the incision line and drain site is a common side effect following mastectomy. If this scar tissue is not addressed, it can lead to decreased flexibility and function in the involved upper quadrant. Astym® treatment is a new approach to soft tissue injuries, and is evidenced in animal studies to promote the healing and regeneration of soft tissues. It has also been found to reduce pain and increase function in people with soft tissue dysfunction. The aim of Astym treatment is to engage the regenerative mechanisms of the body in order to resorb scar tissue, stimulate tissue turnover, and regenerate soft tissues. Handheld instrumentation is applied topically to locate and treat the underlying dysfunctional soft tissue through specific protocols for the application of particular pressures and shear forces. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of Astym treatment on activities of daily living in women who had undergone a mastectomy following a diagnosis of breast cancer. A quasi-experiment involving 40 women, following a mastectomy, evaluated five outcome measures pre- and post-Astym treatment. All five measurement scores: Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand Outcome Measure; a clothing questionnaire on their ability to wear a bra; Patient-Specific Functional Scale; active range of motion of shoulder flexion; and active range of motion of abduction were also measured and all demonstrated significant changes. In this study, Astym treatment improved active range of motion in the involved quadrant and also improved function in patients following a mastectomy. PMID:27022302

  13. Could training executive function improve treatment outcomes for eating disorders?

    PubMed

    Juarascio, Adrienne S; Manasse, Stephanie M; Espel, Hallie M; Kerrigan, Stephanie G; Forman, Evan M

    2015-07-01

    Current gold standard treatments for eating disorders (EDs) lack satisfactory efficacy, and traditional psychological treatments do not directly address executive functioning deficits underpinning ED pathology. The goal of this paper is to explore the potential for enhancing ED treatment outcomes by improving executive functioning deficits that have been demonstrated to underlie eating pathology. To achieve our objective, we (1) review existing evidence for executive functioning deficits that underpin EDs and consider the extent to which these deficits could be targeted in neurocognitive training programs, (2) present the evidence for the one ED neurocognitive training program well-studied to date (Cognitive Remediation Therapy), (3) discuss the utility of neurocognitive training programs that have been developed for other psychiatric disorders with similar deficits, and (4) provide suggestions for the future development and research of neurocognitive training programs for EDs. Despite the fact that the body of empirical work on neurocognitive training programs for eating disorders is very small, we conclude that their potential is high given the combined evidence for the role of deficits in executive functioning in EDs, the initial promise of Cognitive Remediation Training, and the success in treating related conditions with neurocognitive training. Based on the evidence to date, it appears that the development and empirical evaluation of neurocognitive training programs for EDs is warranted.

  14. Glycyrrhiza glabra protects from myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injury by improving hemodynamic, biochemical, histopathological and ventricular function.

    PubMed

    Ojha, Shreesh; Golechha, Mahaveer; Kumari, Santosh; Bhatia, Jagriti; Arya, Dharamvir S

    2013-01-01

    Present study evaluated the cardioprotective effect of Glycyrrhiza glabra against ischemia-reperfusion injury (I-R) induced by ligation of left anterior descending coronary artery (LADCA) in rats. Ligation of LADCA for 45 min followed by 60 min of reperfusion has induced significant (p<0.05) heart dysfunction evidenced by significant (p<0.05) decrease in mean arterial pressure (MAP), heart rate (HR), contractility; (+)LVdP/dtmax and relaxation; (-)LVdP/dtmax along with increased left ventricular end diastolic pressure (LVEDP). Ligation induced I-R injury also significantly (p<0.05) decreased myocyte injury enzymes, creatine phosphokinase-MB (CK-MB) isoenzyme and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) as well as antioxidant enzymes; superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px). Furthermore, I-R injury also induced lipid peroxidation evidenced by significant (p<0.05) increase in malondialdehyde (MDA) formation and histological perturbations concomitant to depletion of glutathione (GSH) from heart. However, pretreatment with G. glabra significantly (p<0.05) prevented the depletion of the antioxidant enzymes; SOD, CAT, GSH-Px and myocyte injury marker enzymes; CK-MB isoenzyme and LDH. Pretreatment with G. glabra also prevented GSH depletion and inhibited lipid peroxidation in heart. In addition to improving biochemical indices of myocardial function, G. glabra also significantly (p<0.05) reinstated MAP, HR, (±)LVdP/dtmax and attenuated abrupt rise in LVEDP. Histopathological preservation evidenced by reduced infiltration of cells and myonecrosis depicted the myocardial salvaging effect of G. glabra. Taken together, results of the present study clearly suggest the cardioprotective potential of G. glabra against myocardial infarction by amelioration of oxidative stress and favorable modulation of cardiac function.

  15. Mechanisms of Contractile-Ring Assembly in Fission Yeast and Beyond

    PubMed Central

    Laporte, Damien; Zhao, Ran; Wu, Jian-Qiu

    2010-01-01

    Most eukaryotes including fungi, amoebas, and animal cells assemble an actin/myosin-based contractile ring during cytokinesis. The majority of proteins implied in ring formation, maturation, and constriction are evolutionarily conserved, suggesting that common mechanisms exist among these divergent eukaryotes. Here, we review the recent advances in positioning and assembly of the actomyosin ring in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and animal cells. In particular, major findings have been made recently in understanding ring formation in genetically tractable S. pombe, revealing a dynamic and robust search, capture, pull, and release mechanism. PMID:20708088

  16. Improved CLARAty Functional-Layer/Decision-Layer Interface

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Estlin, Tara; Rabideau, Gregg; Gaines, Daniel; Johnston, Mark; Chouinard, Caroline; Nessnas, Issa; Shu, I-Hsiang

    2008-01-01

    Improved interface software for communication between the CLARAty Decision and Functional layers has been developed. [The Coupled Layer Architecture for Robotics Autonomy (CLARAty) was described in Coupled-Layer Robotics Architecture for Autonomy (NPO-21218), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 26, No. 12 (December 2002), page 48. To recapitulate: the CLARAty architecture was developed to improve the modularity of robotic software while tightening coupling between planning/execution and basic control subsystems. Whereas prior robotic software architectures typically contained three layers, the CLARAty contains two layers: a decision layer (DL) and a functional layer (FL).] Types of communication supported by the present software include sending commands from DL modules to FL modules and sending data updates from FL modules to DL modules. The present software supplants prior interface software that had little error-checking capability, supported data parameters in string form only, supported commanding at only one level of the FL, and supported only limited updates of the state of the robot. The present software offers strong error checking, and supports complex data structures and commanding at multiple levels of the FL, and relative to the prior software, offers a much wider spectrum of state-update capabilities.

  17. Reduction of brain kynurenic acid improves cognitive function.

    PubMed

    Kozak, Rouba; Campbell, Brian M; Strick, Christine A; Horner, Weldon; Hoffmann, William E; Kiss, Tamas; Chapin, Douglas S; McGinnis, Dina; Abbott, Amanda L; Roberts, Brooke M; Fonseca, Kari; Guanowsky, Victor; Young, Damon A; Seymour, Patricia A; Dounay, Amy; Hajos, Mihaly; Williams, Graham V; Castner, Stacy A

    2014-08-06

    The elevation of kynurenic acid (KYNA) observed in schizophrenic patients may contribute to core symptoms arising from glutamate hypofunction, including cognitive impairments. Although increased KYNA levels reduce excitatory neurotransmission, KYNA has been proposed to act as an endogenous antagonist at the glycine site of the glutamate NMDA receptor (NMDAR) and as a negative allosteric modulator at the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Levels of KYNA are elevated in CSF and the postmortem brain of schizophrenia patients, and these elevated levels of KYNA could contribute to NMDAR hypofunction and the cognitive deficits and negative symptoms associated with this disease. However, the impact of endogenously produced KYNA on brain function and behavior is less well understood due to a paucity of pharmacological tools. To address this issue, we identified PF-04859989, a brain-penetrable inhibitor of kynurenine aminotransferase II (KAT II), the enzyme responsible for most brain KYNA synthesis. In rats, systemic administration of PF-04859989 dose-dependently reduced brain KYNA to as little as 28% of basal levels, and prevented amphetamine- and ketamine-induced disruption of auditory gating and improved performance in a sustained attention task. It also prevented ketamine-induced disruption of performance in a working memory task and a spatial memory task in rodents and nonhuman primates, respectively. Together, these findings support the hypotheses that endogenous KYNA impacts cognitive function and that inhibition of KAT II, and consequent lowering of endogenous brain KYNA levels, improves cognitive performance under conditions considered relevant for schizophrenia.

  18. Maca (L. meyenii) for improving sexual function: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Maca (Lepidium meyenii) is an Andean plant of the brassica (mustard) family. Preparations from maca root have been reported to improve sexual function. The aim of this review was to assess the clinical evidence for or against the effectiveness of the maca plant as a treatment for sexual dysfunction. Methods We searched 17 databases from their inception to April 2010 and included all randomised clinical trials (RCTs) of any type of maca compared to a placebo for the treatment of healthy people or human patients with sexual dysfunction. The risk of bias for each study was assessed using Cochrane criteria, and statistical pooling of data was performed where possible. The selection of studies, data extraction, and validations were performed independently by two authors. Discrepancies were resolved through discussion by the two authors. Results Four RCTs met all the inclusion criteria. Two RCTs suggested a significant positive effect of maca on sexual dysfunction or sexual desire in healthy menopausal women or healthy adult men, respectively, while the other RCT failed to show any effects in healthy cyclists. The further RCT assessed the effects of maca in patients with erectile dysfunction using the International Index of Erectile Dysfunction-5 and showed significant effects. Conclusion The results of our systematic review provide limited evidence for the effectiveness of maca in improving sexual function. However, the total number of trials, the total sample size, and the average methodological quality of the primary studies were too limited to draw firm conclusions. More rigorous studies are warranted. PMID:20691074

  19. Caveolin-1 regulates contractility in differentiated vascular smooth muscle.

    PubMed

    Je, Hyun-Dong; Gallant, Cynthia; Leavis, Paul C; Morgan, Kathleen G

    2004-01-01

    Caveolin is a principal component of caveolar membranes. In the present study, we utilized a decoy peptide approach to define the degree of involvement of caveolin in PKC-dependent regulation of contractility of differentiated vascular smooth muscle. The primary isoform of caveolin in ferret aorta vascular smooth muscle is caveolin-1. Chemical loading of contractile vascular smooth muscle tissue with a synthetic caveolin-1 scaffolding domain peptide inhibited PKC-dependent increases in contractility induced by a phorbol ester or an alpha agonist. Peptide loading also resulted in a significant inhibition of phorbol ester-induced adducin Ser662 phosphorylation, an intracellular monitor of PKC kinase activity, ERK1/2 activation, and Ser789 phosphorylation of the actin binding protein caldesmon. alpha-Agonist-induced ERK1-1/2 activation was also inhibited by the caveolin-1 peptide. Scrambled peptide-loaded tissues or sham-loaded tissues were unaffected with respect to both contractility and signaling. Depolarization-induced activation of contraction was not affected by caveolin peptide loading. Similar results with respect to contractility and ERK1/2 activation during exposure to the phorbol ester or the alpha-agonist were obtained with the cholesterol-depleting agent methyl-beta-cyclodextrin. These results are consistent with a role for caveolin-1 in the coordination of signaling leading to the regulation of contractility of smooth muscle.

  20. Effects of a hydrogen sulfide donor on spontaneous contractile activity of rat stomach and jejunum.

    PubMed

    Shafigullin, M Y; Zefirov, R A; Sabirullina, G I; Zefirov, A L; Sitdikova, G F

    2014-07-01

    We studied the effect of sodium hydrosulfite (NaHS), a donor of hydrogen sulfide (H2S), on spontaneous contractive activity of isolated preparations of rat stomach and jejunum under isometric conditions. NaHS in concentrations of 10-200 μM reduced the amplitude, tonic tension, and frequency of contractions of the preparations. Blockade of K(+) channels with a non-specific antagonist tetraethylammonium (10 mM) increased contraction amplitude in the stomach strip and jejunum segment. The effects of NaHS on all parameters of contractile activity of the stomach and jejunum were fully preserved against the background of tetraethylammonium application. These data suggest that H2S in physiologically relevant concentrations inhibited spontaneous contractile activity of smooth muscle cells in rat stomach and jejunum by reducing the amplitude and frequency of contractions and decreased tonic tension without affecting the function of voltage- and calcium-dependent K(+) channels.

  1. Pilot Canine Investigation of the Cardiopulmonary Baroreflex Control of Ventricular Contractility

    PubMed Central

    Sala-Mercado, Javier A.; Chen, Xiaoxiao; Hammond, Robert L.; Kim, Jong-Kyung; McDonald, Phillip J.; Stephenson, Larry W.; O’Leary, Donal S.; Mukkamala, Ramakrishna

    2010-01-01

    We performed a pilot investigation of the cardiopulmonary baroreflex control of ventricular contractility in two conscious dogs. We specifically measured spontaneous beat-to-beat hemodynamic variability before and after the administration of propranolol. We then identified the transfer function relating beat-to-beat fluctuations in central venous pressure (CVP) to maximal ventricular elastance (Emax) to characterize the cardiopulmonary baroreflex control of ventricular contractility, while accounting for the influences of arterial blood pressure fluctuations on Emax via the arterial baroreflex and heart rate fluctuations on Emax via the force-frequency relation. Our major finding is that the cardiopulmonary baroreflex responds to an increase (decrease) in CVP by increasing (decreasing) Emax via the β-sympathetic nervous system. PMID:19963523

  2. Recent Insights in the Paracrine Modulation of Cardiomyocyte Contractility by Cardiac Endothelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Andriantsitohaina, Ramaroson

    2014-01-01

    The cardiac endothelium is formed by a continuous monolayer of cells that line the cavity of the heart (endocardial endothelial cells (EECs)) and the luminal surface of the myocardial blood vessels (intramyocardial capillary endothelial cells (IMCEs)). EECs and IMCEs can exercise substantial control over the contractility of cardiomyocytes by releasing various factors such as nitric oxide (NO) via a constitutive endothelial NO-synthase (eNOS), endothelin-1, prostaglandins, angiotensin II, peptide growth factors, and neuregulin-1. The purpose of the present paper is actually to shortly review recent new information concerning cardiomyocytes as effectors of endothelium paracrine signaling, focusing particularly on contractile function. The modes of action and the regulatory paracrine role of the main mediators delivered by cardiac endothelial cells upon cardiac contractility identified in cardiomyocytes are complex and not fully described. Thus, careful evaluation of new therapeutic approaches is required targeting important physiological signaling pathways, some of which have been until recently considered as deleterious, like reactive oxygen species. Future works in the field of cardiac endothelial cells and cardiac function will help to better understand the implication of these mediators in cardiac physiopathology. PMID:24745027

  3. Cholinergic stimulation with pyridostigmine improves autonomic function in infarcted rats.

    PubMed

    de La Fuente, Raquel N; Rodrigues, Bruno; Moraes-Silva, Ivana C; Souza, Leandro E; Sirvente, Raquel; Mostarda, Cristiano; De Angelis, Kátia; Soares, Pedro P; Lacchini, Silvia; Consolim-Colombo, Fernanda; Irigoyen, Maria-Cláudia

    2013-09-01

    In the present study we evaluated the effects of short-term pyridostigmine bromide (0.14 mg/mL) treatment started early after myocardial infarction (MI) on left ventricular (LV) and autonomic functions in rats. Male Wistar rats were divided into control, pyridostigmine, infarcted and infarcted + pyridostigmine-treated groups. Pyridostigmine was administered in the drinking water, starting immediately after MI or sham operation, for 11 days. Left ventricular function was evaluated indirectly by echocardiography and directly by LV catheterization. Cardiovascular autonomic control was evaluated by baroreflex sensitivity (BRS), heart rate variability (HRV) and pharmacological blockade. All evaluations started after 7 days pyridostigmine treatment and were finalized after 11 days treatment. Pyridostigmine prevented the impairment of +dP/dT and reduced the MI area in infarcted + pyridostigmine compared with infarcted rats (7 ± 3% vs 17 ± 4%, respectively). Mean blood pressure was restored in infarcted + pyridostigmine compared with infarcted rats (103 ± 3 vs 94 ± 3 mmHg, respectively). In addition, compared with the infarcted group, pyridostigmine improved BRS, as evaluated by tachycardic (1.6 ± 0.2 vs 2.5 ± 0.2 b.p.m./mmHg, respectively) and bradycardic (-0.42 ± 0.01 vs -1.9 ± 0.1 b.p.m./mmHg) responses, and reduced the low frequency/high frequency ratio of HRV (0.81 ± 0.11 vs 0.24 ± 0.14, respectively). These improvements are probably associated with increased vagal tone and reduced sympathetic tone in infarcted + pyridostigmine compared with infarcted rats. In conclusion, the data suggest that short-term pyridostigmine treatment started early after MI can improve BRS, HRV and parasympathetic and sympathetic tone in experimental rats. These data may have potential clinical implications because autonomic markers have prognostic significance after MI.

  4. Creatine supplementation does not improve cognitive function in young adults.

    PubMed

    Rawson, Eric S; Lieberman, Harris R; Walsh, Talia M; Zuber, Sylwia M; Harhart, Jaclyn M; Matthews, Tracy C

    2008-09-03

    Creatine supplementation has been reported to improve certain aspects of cognitive and psychomotor function in older individuals and in young subjects following 24 and 36 h of sleep deprivation. However, the effects of creatine supplementation on cognitive processing and psychomotor performance in non-sleep deprived young adults have not been assessed with a comprehensive battery of neurocognitive tests. The primary objective of this study was to examine the effects of creatine supplementation on cognitive processing and psychomotor performance in young adults. Twenty-two subjects (21+/-2 yr) ingested creatine (0.03 g/kg/day) or placebo for 6 weeks in a double-blind placebo-controlled fashion. Subjects completed a battery of neurocognitive tests pre- and post-supplementation, including: simple reaction time (RT), code substitution (CS), code substitution delayed (CSD), logical reasoning symbolic (LRS), mathematical processing (MP), running memory (RM), and Sternberg memory recall (MR). There were no significant effects of group, no significant effects of time, and no significant group by time interactions for RT, CS, CSD, LRS, MP, RM, and MR (all p>0.05), indicating that there were no differences between creatine and placebo supplemented groups at any time. These results suggest that six weeks of creatine supplementation (0.03/g/kg/day) does not improve cognitive processing in non-sleep deprived young adults. Potentially, creatine supplementation only improves cognitive processing and psychomotor performance in individuals who have impaired cognitive processing abilities.

  5. An immunostimulatory dual-functional nanocarrier that improves cancer immunochemotherapy

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yichao; Xia, Rui; Huang, Yixian; Zhao, Wenchen; Li, Jiang; Zhang, Xiaolan; Wang, Pengcheng; Venkataramanan, Raman; Fan, Jie; Xie, Wen; Ma, Xiaochao; Lu, Binfeng; Li, Song

    2016-01-01

    Immunochemotherapy combines a chemotherapeutic agent with an immune-modulating agent and represents an attractive approach to improve cancer therapy. However, the success of immunochemotherapy is hampered by the lack of a strategy to effectively co-deliver the two therapeutics to the tumours. Here we report the development of a dual-functional, immunostimulatory nanomicellar carrier that is based on a prodrug conjugate of PEG with NLG919, an indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) inhibitor currently used for reversing tumour immune suppression. An Fmoc group, an effective drug-interactive motif, is also introduced into the carrier to improve the drug loading capacity and formulation stability. We show that PEG2k-Fmoc-NLG alone is effective in enhancing T-cell immune responses and exhibits significant antitumour activity in vivo. More importantly, systemic delivery of paclitaxel (PTX) using the PEG2k-Fmoc-NLG nanocarrier leads to a significantly improved antitumour response in both breast cancer and melanoma mouse models. PMID:27819653

  6. Valuing preferences over stormwater management outcomes including improved hydrologic function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    LondoñO Cadavid, Catalina; Ando, Amy W.

    2013-07-01

    Stormwater runoff causes environmental problems such as flooding, soil erosion, and water pollution. Conventional stormwater management has focused primarily on flood reduction, while a new generation of decentralized stormwater solutions yields ancillary benefits such as healthier aquatic habitat, improved surface water quality, and increased water table recharge. Previous research has estimated values for flood reduction from stormwater management, but no estimates exist for the willingness to pay (WTP) for some of the other environmental benefits of alternative approaches to stormwater control. This paper uses a choice experiment survey of households in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, to estimate the values of several attributes of stormwater management outcomes. We analyzed data from 131 surveyed households in randomly selected neighborhoods. We find that people value reduced basement flooding more than reductions in yard or street flooding, but WTP for basement flood reduction in the area only exists if individuals are currently experiencing significant flooding themselves. Citizens value both improved water quality and improved hydrologic function and aquatic habitat from runoff reduction. Thus, widespread investment in low impact development stormwater solutions could have very large total benefits, and stormwater managers should be wary of policies and infrastructure plans that reduce flooding at the expense of water quality and aquatic habitat.

  7. GRK2 blockade with βARKct is essential for cardiac β2-adrenergic receptor signaling towards increased contractility

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background β1- and β2–adrenergic receptors (ARs) play distinct roles in the heart, e.g. β1AR is pro-contractile and pro-apoptotic but β2AR anti-apoptotic and only weakly pro-contractile. G protein coupled receptor kinase (GRK)-2 desensitizes and opposes βAR pro-contractile signaling by phosphorylating the receptor and inducing beta-arrestin (βarr) binding. We posited herein that GRK2 blockade might enhance the pro-contractile signaling of the β2AR subtype in the heart. We tested the effects of cardiac-targeted GRK2 inhibition in vivo exclusively on β2AR signaling under normal conditions and in heart failure (HF). Results We crossed β1AR knockout (B1KO) mice with cardiac-specific transgenic mice expressing the βARKct, a known GRK2 inhibitor, and studied the offspring under normal conditions and in post-myocardial infarction (MI). βARKct expression in vivo proved essential for β2AR-dependent contractile function, as β2AR stimulation with isoproterenol fails to increase contractility in either healthy or post-MI B1KO mice and it only does so in the presence of βARKct. The main underlying mechanism for this is blockade of the interaction of phosphodiesterase (PDE) type 4D with the cardiac β2AR, which is normally mediated by the actions of GRK2 and βarrs on the receptor. The molecular “brake” that PDE4D poses on β2AR signaling to contractility stimulation is thus “released”. Regarding the other beneficial functions of cardiac β2AR, βARKct increased overall survival of the post-MI B1KO mice progressing to HF, via a decrease in cardiac apoptosis and an increase in wound healing-associated inflammation early (at 24 hrs) post-MI. However, these effects disappear by 4 weeks post-MI, and, in their place, upregulation of the other major GRK in the heart, GRK5, is observed. Conclusions GRK2 inhibition in vivo with βARKct is absolutely essential for cardiac β2AR pro-contractile signaling and function. In addition, β2AR anti-apoptotic signaling in

  8. Impaired contractile recovery after low-flow myocardial ischemia in a porcine model of metabolic syndrome.

    PubMed

    Huang, Janice V; Lu, Li; Ye, Shuyu; Bergman, Bryan C; Sparagna, Genevieve C; Sarraf, Mohammad; Reusch, Jane E B; Greyson, Clifford R; Schwartz, Gregory G

    2013-03-15

    Clinical metabolic syndrome conveys a poor prognosis in patients with acute coronary syndrome, not fully accounted for by the extent of coronary atherosclerosis. To explain this observation, we determined whether postischemic myocardial contractile and metabolic function are impaired in a porcine dietary model of metabolic syndrome without atherosclerosis. Micropigs (n = 28) were assigned to a control diet (low fat, no added sugars) or an intervention diet (high saturated fat and simple sugars, no added cholesterol) for 7 mo. The intervention diet produced obesity, hypertension, dyslipidemia, and impaired glucose tolerance, but not atherosclerosis. Under open-chest, anesthetized conditions, pigs underwent 45 min of low-flow myocardial ischemia and 120 min of reperfusion. In both diet groups, contractile function was similar at baseline and declined similarly during ischemia. However, after 120 min of reperfusion, regional work recovered to 21 ± 12% of baseline in metabolic syndrome pigs compared with 61 ± 13% in control pigs (P = 0.01). Ischemia-reperfusion caused a progressive decline in mechanical/metabolic efficiency (regional work/O2 consumption) in metabolic syndrome hearts, but not in control hearts. Metabolic syndrome hearts demonstrated altered fatty acyl composition of cardiolipin and increased Akt phosphorylation in both ischemic and nonischemic regions, suggesting tonic activation. Metabolic syndrome hearts used more fatty acid than control hearts (P = 0.03). When fatty acid availability was restricted by prior insulin exposure, differences between groups in postischemic contractile recovery and mechanical/metabolic efficiency were eliminated. In conclusion, pigs with characteristics of metabolic syndrome demonstrate impaired contractile and metabolic recovery after low-flow myocardial ischemia. Contributory mechanisms may include remodeling of cardiolipin, abnormal activation of Akt, and excessive utilization of fatty acid substrates.

  9. Impaired contractile recovery after low-flow myocardial ischemia in a porcine model of metabolic syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Janice V.; Lu, Li; Ye, Shuyu; Bergman, Bryan C.; Sparagna, Genevieve C.; Sarraf, Mohammad; Reusch, Jane E. B.; Greyson, Clifford R.

    2013-01-01

    Clinical metabolic syndrome conveys a poor prognosis in patients with acute coronary syndrome, not fully accounted for by the extent of coronary atherosclerosis. To explain this observation, we determined whether postischemic myocardial contractile and metabolic function are impaired in a porcine dietary model of metabolic syndrome without atherosclerosis. Micropigs (n = 28) were assigned to a control diet (low fat, no added sugars) or an intervention diet (high saturated fat and simple sugars, no added cholesterol) for 7 mo. The intervention diet produced obesity, hypertension, dyslipidemia, and impaired glucose tolerance, but not atherosclerosis. Under open-chest, anesthetized conditions, pigs underwent 45 min of low-flow myocardial ischemia and 120 min of reperfusion. In both diet groups, contractile function was similar at baseline and declined similarly during ischemia. However, after 120 min of reperfusion, regional work recovered to 21 ± 12% of baseline in metabolic syndrome pigs compared with 61 ± 13% in control pigs (P = 0.01). Ischemia-reperfusion caused a progressive decline in mechanical/metabolic efficiency (regional work/O2 consumption) in metabolic syndrome hearts, but not in control hearts. Metabolic syndrome hearts demonstrated altered fatty acyl composition of cardiolipin and increased Akt phosphorylation in both ischemic and nonischemic regions, suggesting tonic activation. Metabolic syndrome hearts used more fatty acid than control hearts (P = 0.03). When fatty acid availability was restricted by prior insulin exposure, differences between groups in postischemic contractile recovery and mechanical/metabolic efficiency were eliminated. In conclusion, pigs with characteristics of metabolic syndrome demonstrate impaired contractile and metabolic recovery after low-flow myocardial ischemia. Contributory mechanisms may include remodeling of cardiolipin, abnormal activation of Akt, and excessive utilization of fatty acid substrates. PMID:23335793

  10. Cardiac-specific overexpression of catalase attenuates lipopolysaccharide-induced myocardial contractile dysfunction: role of autophagy.

    PubMed

    Turdi, Subat; Han, Xuefeng; Huff, Anna F; Roe, Nathan D; Hu, Nan; Gao, Feng; Ren, Jun

    2012-09-15

    Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) from gram-negative bacteria is a major initiator of sepsis, leading to cardiovascular collapse. Accumulating evidence has indicated a role of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in cardiovascular complications in sepsis. This study was designed to examine the effect of cardiac-specific overexpression of catalase in LPS-induced cardiac contractile dysfunction and the underlying mechanism(s) with a focus on autophagy. Catalase transgenic and wild-type FVB mice were challenged with LPS (6 mg/kg) and cardiac function was evaluated. Levels of oxidative stress, autophagy, apoptosis, and protein damage were examined using fluorescence microscopy, Western blot, TUNEL assay, caspase-3 activity, and carbonyl formation. A Kaplan-Meier curve was constructed for survival after LPS treatment. Our results revealed a lower mortality in catalase mice compared with FVB mice after LPS challenge. LPS injection led to depressed cardiac contractile capacity as evidenced by echocardiography and cardiomyocyte contractile function, the effect of which was ablated by catalase overexpression. LPS treatment induced elevated TNF-α level, autophagy, apoptosis (TUNEL, caspase-3 activation, cleaved caspase-3), production of ROS and O(2)(-), and protein carbonyl formation, the effects of which were significantly attenuated by catalase overexpression. Electron microscopy revealed focal myocardial damage characterized by mitochondrial injury after LPS treatment, which was less severe in catalase mice. Interestingly, LPS-induced cardiomyocyte contractile dysfunction was prevented by the antioxidant N-acetylcysteine and the autophagy inhibitor 3-methyladenine. Taken together, our data revealed that catalase protects against LPS-induced cardiac dysfunction and mortality, which may be associated with inhibition of oxidative stress and autophagy.

  11. Ghrelin does not affect gastrointestinal contractility in rainbow trout and goldfish in vitro.

    PubMed

    Kitazawa, Takio; Itoh, Kentaro; Yaosaka, Noriko; Maruyama, Keisuke; Matsuda, Kouhei; Teraoka, Hiroki; Kaiya, Hiroyuki

    2012-09-15

    Ghrelin has been identified in rainbow trout and goldfish, and it has been shown to regulate growth hormone release and food intake in these species as seen in mammals. The aim of this study was to investigate the functional role of ghrelin in regulation of gastrointestinal contractility in both fishes. Neither rainbow trout ghrelin nor rat ghrelin affected the contractility of gastrointestinal strips of rainbow trout. Similarly, goldfish ghrelin-17 and rat ghrelin did not cause marked contraction in the goldfish intestinal bulb. Detail examinations using the goldfish intestine revealed that human neurotensin, substance-P, goldfish neuromedine-U and carbachol showed apparent contractile activities in the intestinal strips. Electrical field stimulation (EFS, 1-20 Hz) caused a frequency-dependent contraction of the intestinal bulb. Atropine partially inhibited and tetrodotoxin abolished the EFS-induced contraction. Pretreatments with goldfish ghrelin-17 and rat ghrelin did not modify the EFS-induced contraction. The mRNAs of two types of growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GHS-R), GHS-R1a-1 and GHS-R1a-2, were detected in the goldfish intestine, and the expression level of GHS-R1a-2 was 4-times higher than that of GHS-R1a-1. The expression levels of GHS-R1a-1 and GHS-R1a-2 in four regions of the goldfish intestine (intestinal bulb, intestine-1, intestine-2 and intestine-3) were almost the same. In conclusion, ghrelin does not affect gastrointestinal contractility of the rainbow trout and goldfish, although GHSR-like receptor/GHS-R1a is expressed entire intestine. These results suggest diversity of ghrelin function in vertebrates.

  12. Automated drug screening with contractile muscle tissue engineered from dystrophic myoblasts

    PubMed Central

    Vandenburgh, Herman; Shansky, Janet; Benesch-Lee, Frank; Skelly, Kirsten; Spinazzola, Janelle M.; Saponjian, Yero; Tseng, Brian S.

    2009-01-01

    Identification of factors that improve muscle function in boys with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) could lead to an improved quality of life. To establish a functional in vitro assay for muscle strength, mdx murine myoblasts, the genetic homologue of DMD, were tissue engineered in 96-microwell plates into 3-dimensional muscle constructs with parallel arrays of striated muscle fibers. When electrically stimulated, they generated tetanic forces measured with an automated motion tracking system. Thirty-one compounds of interest as potential treatments for patients with DMD were tested at 3 to 6 concentrations. Eleven of the compounds (insulin-like growth factor-1, creatine, β-hydroxy-β-methylbutyrate, trichostatin A, lisinopril, and 6 from the glucocorticoid family) significantly increased tetanic force relative to placebo-treated controls. The glucocorticoids methylprednisolone, deflazacort, and prednisone increased tetanic forces at low doses (EC50 of 6, 19, and 56 nM, respectively), indicating a direct muscle mechanism by which they may be benefitting DMD patients. The tetanic force assay also identified beneficial compound interactions (arginine plus deflazacort and prednisone plus creatine) as well as deleterious interactions (prednisone plus creatine inhibited by pentoxifylline) of combinatorial therapies taken by some DMD patients. Since mdx muscle in vivo and DMD patients respond in a similar manner to many of these compounds, the in vitro assay will be a useful tool for the rapid identification of new potential treatments for muscle weakness in DMD and other muscle disorders.—Vandenburgh, H., Shansky, J., Benesch-Lee, F., Skelly, K., Spinazzola, J.M., Saponjian, Y., Tseng, B.S. Automated drug screening with contractile muscle tissue engineered from dystrophic myoblasts. PMID:19487307

  13. Baduanjin Mind-Body Intervention Improves the Executive Control Function

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Tingting; Yue, Guang H.; Tian, Yingxue; Jiang, Changhao

    2017-01-01

    This study aims at comparing the effects of the Baduanjin mind-body (BMB) intervention with a conventional relaxation training program on enhancing the executive function. The study also attempts to explore the neural substrates underlying the cognitive effect of BMB intervention using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) technique. Forty-two healthy college students were randomly allocated into either the Baduanjin intervention group or relaxation training (control) group. Training lasted for 8 weeks (90 min/day, 5 days/week). Each participant was administered the shortened Profile of Mood States to evaluate their mood status and the flanker task to evaluate executive function before and after training. While performing the flanker task, the NIRS data were collected from each participant. After training, individuals who have participated in BMB exercise showed a significant reduction in depressive mood compared with the same measure before the intervention. However, participants in the control group showed no such reduction. The before vs. after measurement difference in the flanker task incongruent trails was significant only for the Baduanjin intervention group. Interestingly, an increase in oxygenated hemoglobin in the left prefrontal cortex was observed during the Incongruent Trails test only after the BMB exercise intervention. These findings implicate that Baduanjin is an effective and easy-to-administering mind-body exercise for improving executive function and perhaps brain self-regulation in a young and healthy population. PMID:28133453

  14. Improving outcome of sensorimotor functions after traumatic spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Dietz, Volker

    2016-01-01

    In the rehabilitation of a patient suffering a spinal cord injury (SCI), the exploitation of neuroplasticity is well established. It can be facilitated through the training of functional movements with technical assistance as needed and can improve outcome after an SCI. The success of such training in individuals with incomplete SCI critically depends on the presence of physiological proprioceptive input to the spinal cord leading to meaningful muscle activations during movement performances. Some actual preclinical approaches to restore function by compensating for the loss of descending input to spinal networks following complete/incomplete SCI are critically discussed in this report. Electrical and pharmacological stimulation of spinal neural networks is still in the experimental stage, and despite promising repair studies in animal models, translations to humans up to now have not been convincing. It is possible that a combination of techniques targeting the promotion of axonal regeneration is necessary to advance the restoration of function. In the future, refinement of animal models according to clinical conditions and requirements may contribute to greater translational success. PMID:27303641

  15. Heart rate variability biofeedback improves cardiorespiratory resting function during sleep.

    PubMed

    Sakakibara, Masahito; Hayano, Junichiro; Oikawa, Leo O; Katsamanis, Maria; Lehrer, Paul

    2013-12-01

    The present study was designed to examine the effect of heart rate variability (HRV) biofeedback on the cardiorespiratory resting function during sleep in daily life. Forty-five healthy young adults were randomly assigned to one of three groups: HRV biofeedback, Autogenic Training(AT), and no-treatment control. Participants in the HRV biofeedback were instructed to use a handheld HRV biofeedback device before their habitual bedtime, those in the AT were asked to listen to an audiotaped instruction before bedtime,and those in the control were asked to engage in their habitual activity before bedtime. Pulse wave signal during sleep at their own residences was measured continuously with a wrist watch-type transdermal photoelectric sensor for three time points. Baseline data were collected on the first night of measurements, followed by two successive nights for HRV biofeedback, AT, or control. Cardiorespiratory resting function was assessed quantitatively as the amplitude of high frequency(HF) component of pulse rate variability, a surrogate measure of respiratory sinus arrhythmia. HF component increased during sleep in the HRV biofeedback group,although it remained unchanged in the AT and control groups. These results suggest that HRV biofeedback before sleep may improve cardiorespiratory resting function during sleep.

  16. Splenectomy Improves Hemostatic and Liver Functions in Hepatosplenic Schistosomiasis Mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Leite, Luiz Arthur Calheiros; Pimenta Filho, Adenor Almeida; Ferreira, Rita de Cássia dos Santos; da Fonseca, Caíque Silveira Martins; dos Santos, Bianka Santana; Montenegro, Silvia Maria Lucena; Lopes, Edmundo Pessoa de Almeida; Domingues, Ana Lúcia Coutinho; Owen, James Stuart; Lima, Vera Lucia de Menezes

    2015-01-01

    Background Schistosomiasis mansoni is a chronic liver disease, in which some patients (5–10%) progress to the most severe form, hepatosplenic schistosomiasis. This form is associated with portal hypertension and splenomegaly, and often episodes of gastrointestinal bleeding, even with liver function preserved. Splenectomy is a validated procedure to reduce portal hypertension following digestive bleeding. Here, we evaluate beneficial effects of splenectomy on blood coagulation factors and liver function tests in hepatosplenic schistosomiasis mansoni compared to non-operated patients. Methodology/Principal Findings Forty-five patients who had undergone splenectomy surgery were assessed by laboratory analyses and ultrasound examination and compared to a non-operated group (n = 55). Blood samples were obtained for liver function tests, platelet count and prothrombin time. Coagulation factors (II, VII, VIII, IX and X), protein C and antithrombin IIa, plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 were measured by routine photometric, chromogenic or enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays, while hyperfibrinolysis was defined by plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 levels. Both groups had similar age, gender and pattern of periportal fibrosis. Splenectomized patients showed significant reductions in portal vein diameter, alkaline phosphatase and bilirubin levels compared to non-operated patients, while for coagulation factors there were significant improvement in prothrombin, partial thromboplastin times and higher levels of factor VII, VIII, IX, X, protein C and plasminogen activator inhibitor-1. Conclusion/Significance This study shows that the decrease of flow pressure in portal circulation after splenectomy restores the capacity of hepatocyte synthesis, especially on the factor VII and protein C levels, and these findings suggest that portal hypertension in patients with hepatosplenic schistosomiasis influences liver functioning and the blood coagulation status. PMID:26267788

  17. Bcl-2 engineered MSCs inhibited apoptosis and improved heart function.

    PubMed

    Li, Wenzhong; Ma, Nan; Ong, Lee-Lee; Nesselmann, Catharina; Klopsch, Christian; Ladilov, Yury; Furlani, Dario; Piechaczek, Christoph; Moebius, Jeannette M; Lützow, Karola; Lendlein, Andreas; Stamm, Christof; Li, Ren-Ke; Steinhoff, Gustav

    2007-08-01

    Engraftment of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) derived from adult bone marrow has been proposed as a potential therapeutic approach for postinfarction left ventricular dysfunction. However, limited cell viability after transplantation into the myocardium has restricted its regenerative capacity. In this study, we genetically modified MSCs with an antiapoptotic Bcl-2 gene and evaluated cell survival, engraftment, revascularization, and functional improvement in a rat left anterior descending ligation model via intracardiac injection. Rat MSCs were manipulated to overexpress the Bcl-2 gene. In vitro, the antiapoptotic and paracrine effects were assessed under hypoxic conditions. In vivo, the Bcl-2 gene-modified MSCs (Bcl-2-MSCs) were injected after myocardial infarction. The surviving cells were tracked after transplantation. Capillary density was quantified after 3 weeks. The left ventricular function was evaluated by pressure-volume loops. The Bcl-2 gene protected MSCs against apoptosis. In vitro, Bcl-2 overexpression reduced MSC apoptosis by 32% and enhanced vascular endothelial growth factor secretion by more than 60% under hypoxic conditions. Transplantation with Bcl-2-MSCs increased 2.2-fold, 1.9-fold, and 1.2-fold of the cellular survival at 4 days, 3 weeks, and 6 weeks, respectively, compared with the vector-MSC group. Capillary density in the infarct border zone was 15% higher in Bcl-2-MSC transplanted animals than in vector-MSC treated animals. Furthermore, Bcl-2-MSC transplanted animals had 17% smaller infarct size than vector-MSC treated animals and exhibited functional recovery remarkably. Our current findings support the premise that transplantation of antiapoptotic gene-modified MSCs may have values for mediating substantial functional recovery after acute myocardial infarction.

  18. Structure of the Elastin-Contractile Units in the Thoracic Aorta and How Genes that Cause Thoracic Aortic Aneurysms and Dissections Disrupt this Structure

    PubMed Central

    Karimi, Ashkan; Milewicz, Dianna M.

    2016-01-01

    The medial layer of the aorta confers elasticity and strength to the aortic wall and is composed of alternating layers of smooth muscle cells (SMCs) and elastic fibers. The SMC elastin-contractile unit is a structural unit that links the elastin fibers to the SMCs and is characterized by the following: 1. Layers of elastin fibers that are surrounded by microfibrils. 2. Microfibrils that bind to the integrin receptors in focal adhesions on the cell surface of the SMCs. 3. SMC contractile filaments that are linked to the focal adhesions on the inner side of the membrane. The genes that are altered to cause thoracic aortic aneurysms and aortic dissections encode proteins involved in the structure or function of the SMC elastin – contractile unit. Included in this gene list are the genes encoding protein that are structural components of elastin fibers and microfibrils, FBN1, MFAP5, ELN, and FBLN4. Also included are genes that are structural proteins in the SMC contractile unit, including ACTA2, which encodes SMC-specific α-actin and MYH11, which encodes SMC-specific myosin heavy chain, along with MYLK and PRKG1, which encode kinases that control SMC contraction. Finally, mutations in the gene encoding the protein linking integrin receptors to the contractile filaments, FLNA, also cause thoracic aortic disease. Thus, these data suggest that functional SMC elastin-contractile units are important for maintaining the structural integrity of the aorta. PMID:26724508

  19. Structure of the Elastin-Contractile Units in the Thoracic Aorta and How Genes That Cause Thoracic Aortic Aneurysms and Dissections Disrupt This Structure.

    PubMed

    Karimi, Ashkan; Milewicz, Dianna M

    2016-01-01

    The medial layer of the aorta confers elasticity and strength to the aortic wall and is composed of alternating layers of smooth muscle cells (SMCs) and elastic fibres. The SMC elastin-contractile unit is a structural unit that links the elastin fibres to the SMCs and is characterized by the following: (1) layers of elastin fibres that are surrounded by microfibrils; (2) microfibrils that bind to the integrin receptors in focal adhesions on the cell surface of the SMCs; and (3) SMC contractile filaments that are linked to the focal adhesions on the inner side of the membrane. The genes that are altered to cause thoracic aortic aneurysms and aortic dissections encode proteins involved in the structure or function of the SMC elastin-contractile unit. Included in this gene list are the genes encoding protein that are structural components of elastin fibres and microfibrils, FBN1, MFAP5, ELN, and FBLN4. Also included are genes that encode structural proteins in the SMC contractile unit, including ACTA2, which encodes SMC-specific α-actin and MYH11, which encodes SMC-specific myosin heavy chain, along with MYLK and PRKG1, which encode kinases that control SMC contraction. Finally, mutations in the gene encoding the protein linking integrin receptors to the contractile filaments, FLNA, also predispose to thoracic aortic disease. Thus, these data suggest that functional SMC elastin-contractile units are important for maintaining the structural integrity of the aorta.

  20. Contractile Force of Human Extraocular Muscle: A Theoretical Analysis.

    PubMed

    Guo, Hongmei; Gao, Zhipeng; Chen, Weiyi

    2016-01-01

    Aim. The length-contractile force relationships of six human extraocular muscles (EOMs) in primary innervations should be determined during eye movement modeling and surgery of clinical EOMs. This study aims to investigate these relationships. Method. The proposal is based on the assumption that six EOMs have similar constitutive relationships, with the eye suspended in the primary position. The constitutive relationships of EOMs are obtained by optimizing from previous experimental data and the theory of mechanical equilibrium using traditional model. Further, simulate the existing experiment of resistance force, and then compare the simulated results with the existing experimental results. Finally, the mechanical constitutive relationships of EOMs are obtained. Results. The results show that the simulated resistance forces from the other four EOMs except for the horizontal recti well agree with previous experimental results. Conclusion. The mechanical constitutive relationships of six EOMs in primary innervations are obtained, and the rationality of the constitutive relationships is verified. Whereafter, the active stress-strain relationships of the six EOMs in the primary innervations are obtained. The research results can improve the eye movement model to predict the surgical amounts of EOMs before EOM surgery more precisely.

  1. Phospholemman Deficiency in Postinfarct Hearts: Enhanced Contractility but Increased Mortality

    PubMed Central

    Mirza, M. Ayoub; Lane, Susan; Yang, Zequan; Karaoli, Themis; Akosah, Kwame; Hossack, John; McDuffie, Marcia; Wang, JuFang; Zhang, Xue-Qian; Song, Jianliang; Cheung, Joseph Y.; Tucker, Amy L.

    2013-01-01

    Phospholemman (PLM) regulates [Na+]i, [Ca2+]i and contractility through its interactions with Na+-K+-ATPase (NKA) and Na+/Ca2+ exchanger (NCX1) in the heart. Both expression and phosphorylation of PLM are altered after myocardial infarction (MI) and heart failure. We tested the hypothesis that absence of PLM regulation of NKA and NCX1 in PLM-knockout (KO) mice is detrimental. Three weeks after MI, wild-type (WT) and PLM-KO hearts were similarly hypertrophied. PLM expression was lower but fractional phosphorylation was higher in WT-MI compared to WT-sham hearts. Left ventricular ejection fraction was severely depressed in WT-MI but significantly less depressed in PLM-KO-MI hearts despite similar infarct sizes. Compared with WT-sham myocytes, the abnormal [Ca2+]i transient and contraction amplitudes observed in WT-MI myocytes were ameliorated by genetic absence of PLM. In addition, NCX1 current was depressed in WT-MI but not in PLM-KO-MI myocytes. Despite improved myocardial and myocyte performance, PLM-KO mice demonstrated reduced survival after MI. Our findings indicate that alterations in PLM expression and phosphorylation are important adaptations post-MI, and that complete absence of PLM regulation of NKA and NCX1 is detrimental in post-MI animals. PMID:22686200

  2. Phospholemman deficiency in postinfarct hearts: enhanced contractility but increased mortality.

    PubMed

    Mirza, M Ayoub; Lane, Susan; Yang, Zequan; Karaoli, Themis; Akosah, Kwame; Hossack, John; McDuffie, Marcia; Wang, JuFang; Zhang, Xue-Qian; Song, Jianliang; Cheung, Joseph Y; Tucker, Amy L

    2012-06-01

    Phospholemman (PLM) regulates [Na(+) ](i), [Ca(2+)](i) and contractility through its interactions with Na(+)-K(+)-ATPase (NKA) and Na(+) /Ca(2+) exchanger (NCX1) in the heart. Both expression and phosphorylation of PLM are altered after myocardial infarction (MI) and heart failure. We tested the hypothesis that absence of PLM regulation of NKA and NCX1 in PLM-knockout (KO) mice is detrimental. Three weeks after MI, wild-type (WT) and PLM-KO hearts were similarly hypertrophied. PLM expression was lower but fractional phosphorylation was higher in WT-MI compared to WT-sham hearts. Left ventricular ejection fraction was severely depressed in WT-MI but significantly less depressed in PLM-KO-MI hearts despite similar infarct sizes. Compared with WT-sham myocytes, the abnormal [Ca(2+) ], transient and contraction amplitudes observed in WT-MI myocytes were ameliorated by genetic absence of PLM. In addition, NCX1 current was depressed in WT-MI but not in PLM-KO-MI myocytes. Despite improved myocardial and myocyte performance, PLM-KO mice demonstrated reduced survival after MI. Our findings indicate that alterations in PLM expression and phosphorylation are important adaptations post-MI, and that complete absence of PLM regulation of NKA and NCX1 is detrimental in post-MI animals.

  3. Contractile Force of Human Extraocular Muscle: A Theoretical Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Hongmei; Gao, Zhipeng; Chen, Weiyi

    2016-01-01

    Aim. The length-contractile force relationships of six human extraocular muscles (EOMs) in primary innervations should be determined during eye movement modeling and surgery of clinical EOMs. This study aims to investigate these relationships. Method. The proposal is based on the assumption that six EOMs have similar constitutive relationships, with the eye suspended in the primary position. The constitutive relationships of EOMs are obtained by optimizing from previous experimental data and the theory of mechanical equilibrium using traditional model. Further, simulate the existing experiment of resistance force, and then compare the simulated results with the existing experimental results. Finally, the mechanical constitutive relationships of EOMs are obtained. Results. The results show that the simulated resistance forces from the other four EOMs except for the horizontal recti well agree with previous experimental results. Conclusion. The mechanical constitutive relationships of six EOMs in primary innervations are obtained, and the rationality of the constitutive relationships is verified. Whereafter, the active stress-strain relationships of the six EOMs in the primary innervations are obtained. The research results can improve the eye movement model to predict the surgical amounts of EOMs before EOM surgery more precisely. PMID:27087774

  4. Improving Project Management with Simulation and Completion Distribution Functions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cates, Grant R.

    2004-01-01

    million per month is being spent on this project, which is scheduled to complete by 2010. NASA project stakeholders participated in determining and managing completion distribution functions produced from PAST. The first result was that project stakeholders improved project completion risk awareness. Secondly, using PAST, mitigation options were analyzed to improve project completion performance and reduce total project cost.

  5. Acetyl-L-carnitine improves aged brain function.

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, Satoru; Iwamoto, Machiko; Kon, Kazuo; Waki, Hatsue; Ando, Susumu; Tanaka, Yasukazu

    2010-07-01

    The effects of acetyl-L-carnitine (ALCAR), an acetyl derivative of L-carnitine, on memory and learning capacity and on brain synaptic functions of aged rats were examined. Male Fischer 344 rats were given ALCAR (100 mg/kg bodyweight) per os for 3 months and were subjected to the Hebb-Williams tasks and AKON-1 task to assess their learning capacity. Cholinergic activities were determined with synaptosomes isolated from brain cortices of the rats. Choline parameters, the high-affinity choline uptake, acetylcholine (ACh) synthesis and depolarization-evoked ACh release were all enhanced in the ALCAR group. An increment of depolarization-induced calcium ion influx into synaptosomes was also evident in rats given ALCAR. Electrophysiological studies using hippocampus slices indicated that the excitatory postsynaptic potential slope and population spike size were both increased in ALCAR-treated rats. These results indicate that ALCAR increases synaptic neurotransmission in the brain and consequently improves learning capacity in aging rats.

  6. Hydrogen sulfide improves neural function in rats following cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

    PubMed

    Lin, Ji-Yan; Zhang, Min-Wei; Wang, Jin-Gao; Li, Hui; Wei, Hong-Yan; Liu, Rong; Dai, Gang; Liao, Xiao-Xing

    2016-02-01

    The alleviation of brain injury is a key issue following cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is hypothesized to be involved in the pathophysiological process of ischemia-reperfusion injury, and exerts a protective effect on neurons. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of H2S on neural functions following cardiac arrest (CA) in rats. A total of 60 rats were allocated at random into three groups. CA was induced to establish the model and CPR was performed after 6 min. Subsequently, sodium hydrosulfide (NaHS), hydroxylamine or saline was administered to the rats. Serum levels of H2S, neuron-specific enolase (NSE) and S100β were determined following CPR. In addition, neurological deficit scoring (NDS), the beam walking test (BWT), prehensile traction test and Morris water maze experiment were conducted. Neuronal apoptosis rates were detected in the hippocampal region following sacrifice. After CPR, as the H2S levels increased or decreased, the serum NSE and S100β concentrations decreased or increased, respectively (P<0.0w. The NDS results of the NaHS group were improved compared with those of the hydroxylamine group at 24 h after CPR (P<0.05). In the Morris water maze experiment, BWT and prehensile traction test the animals in the NaHS group performed best and rats in the hydroxylamine group performed worst. At day 7, the apoptotic index and the expression of caspase-3 were reduced in the hippocampal CA1 region, while the expression of Bcl-2 increased in the NaHS group; and results of the hydroxylamine group were in contrast. Therefore, the results of the present study indicate that H2S is able to improve neural function in rats following CPR.

  7. Relationship between systolic and diastolic function with improvements in forward stroke volume following reduction in mitral regurgitation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Firstenberg, M. S.; Greenberg, N. L.; Smedira, N. G.; McCarthy, P. M.; Garcia, M. J.; Thomas, J. D.

    2001-01-01

    Efforts to improve mitral regurgitation (MR) are often performed in conjunction with coronary revascularization. However, the independent effects of a reduced MR area (MRa) are difficult to quantify. Using a previously developed cardiovascular model, ventricular contractility (elastance 1-8 mmHg/ml) and relaxation (tau: 40-150 msec) were independently adjusted for four grades of MR orifice areas (0.0 to 0.8 cm2). Improvements in forward stroke volume (fSV) were determined for the permutations of reduced MRa. For all conditions, LV end-diastolic pressure and volumes ranged from 7.3-24.2 mmHg and 64.8-174.3 ml, respectively. Overall, fSV ranged from 36.0-89.4 (mean: 64.2 +/- 12.8) ml, improved between 6.4 and 35.3% (mean: 15.6 +/- 8.1%), and was best predicted by (r=0.97, p<0.01) %delta(fSV)[correction of fVS]=34[MRa initial] - 46[MRa final] -0.5[elastance]. Reduced MRa, independent of relaxation and minimally influence by contractility, yield improved fSVs.

  8. Multi-cellular interactions sustain long-term contractility of human pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes

    PubMed Central

    Burridge, Paul W; Metzler, Scott A; Nakayama, Karina H; Abilez, Oscar J; Simmons, Chelsey S; Bruce, Marc A; Matsuura, Yuka; Kim, Paul; Wu, Joseph C; Butte, Manish; Huang, Ngan F; Yang, Phillip C

    2014-01-01

    Therapeutic delivery of cardiomyocytes derived from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSC-CMs) represents a novel clinical approach to regenerate the injured myocardium. However, poor survival and contractility of these cells are a significant bottleneck to their clinical use. To better understand the role of cell-cell communication in enhancing the phenotype and contractile properties of hPSC-CMs, we developed a three-dimensional (3D) hydrogel composed of hPSC-CMs, human pluripotent stem cell-derived endothelial cells (hPSC-ECs), and/or human amniotic mesenchymal stem cells (hAMSCs). The objective of this study was to examine the role of multi-cellular interactions among hPSC-ECs and hAMSCs on the survival and long-term contractile phenotype of hPSC-CMs in a 3D hydrogel. Quantification of spontaneous contractility of hPSC-CMs in tri-culture demonstrated a 6-fold increase in the area of contractile motion after 6 weeks with characteristic rhythmic contraction frequency, when compared to hPSC-CMs alone (P < 0.05). This finding was supported by a statistically significant increase in cardiac troponin T protein expression in the tri-culture hydrogel construct at 6 weeks, when compared to hPSC-CMs alone (P < 0.001). The sustained hPSC-CM survival and contractility in tri-culture was associated with a significant upregulation in the gene expression of L-type Ca2+ ion channel, Cav1.2, and the inward-rectifier potassium channel, Kir2.1 (P < 0.05), suggesting a role of ion channels in mediating these processes. These findings demonstrate that multi-cellular interactions modulate hPSC-CM phenotype, function, and survival, and they will have important implications in engineering cardiac tissues for treatment of cardiovascular diseases. PMID:25628783

  9. NADPH oxidase-2 inhibition restores contractility and intracellular calcium handling and reduces arrhythmogenicity in dystrophic cardiomyopathy.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez, Daniel R; Treuer, Adriana V; Lamirault, Guillaume; Mayo, Vera; Cao, Yenong; Dulce, Raul A; Hare, Joshua M

    2014-09-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy may affect cardiac muscle, producing a dystrophic cardiomyopathy in humans and the mdx mouse. We tested the hypothesis that oxidative stress participates in disrupting calcium handling and contractility in the mdx mouse with established cardiomyopathy. We found increased expression (fivefold) of the NADPH oxidase (NOX) 2 in the mdx hearts compared with wild type, along with increased superoxide production. Next, we tested the impact of NOX2 inhibition on contractility and calcium handling in isolated cardiomyocytes. Contractility was decreased in mdx myocytes compared with wild type, and this was restored toward normal by pretreating with apocynin. In addition, the amplitude of evoked intracellular Ca(2+) concentration transients that was diminished in mdx myocytes was also restored with NOX2 inhibition. Total sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca(2+) content was reduced in mdx hearts and normalized by apocynin treatment. Additionally, NOX2 inhibition decreased the production of spontaneous diastolic calcium release events and decreased the SR calcium leak in mdx myocytes. In addition, nitric oxide (NO) synthase 1 (NOS-1) expression was increased eightfold in mdx hearts compared with wild type. Nevertheless, cardiac NO production was reduced. To test whether this paradox implied NOS-1 uncoupling, we treated cardiac myocytes with exogenous tetrahydrobioterin, along with the NOX inhibitor VAS2870. These agents restored NO production and phospholamban phosphorylation in mdx toward normal. Together, these results demonstrate that, in mdx hearts, NOX2 inhibition improves the SR calcium handling and contractility, partially by recoupling NOS-1. These findings reveal a new layer of nitroso-redox imbalance in dystrophic cardiomyopathy.

  10. Functional improvement of dystrophic muscle by myostatin blockade.

    PubMed

    Bogdanovich, Sasha; Krag, Thomas O B; Barton, Elisabeth R; Morris, Linda D; Whittemore, Lisa-Anne; Ahima, Rexford S; Khurana, Tejvir S

    2002-11-28

    Mice and cattle with mutations in the myostatin (GDF8) gene show a marked increase in body weight and muscle mass, indicating that this new member of the TGF-beta superfamily is a negative regulator of skeletal muscle growth. Inhibition of the myostatin gene product is predicted to increase muscle mass and improve the disease phenotype in a variety of primary and secondary myopathies. We tested the ability of inhibition of myostatin in vivo to ameliorate the dystrophic phenotype in the mdx mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Blockade of endogenous myostatin by using intraperitoneal injections of blocking antibodies for three months resulted in an increase in body weight, muscle mass, muscle size and absolute muscle strength in mdx mouse muscle along with a significant decrease in muscle degeneration and concentrations of serum creatine kinase. The functional improvement of dystrophic muscle by myostatin blockade provides a novel, pharmacological strategy for treatment of diseases associated with muscle wasting such as DMD, and circumvents the major problems associated with conventional gene therapy in these disorders.

  11. Improved Functionality and Curation Support in the ADS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Accomazzi, Alberto; Kurtz, Michael J.; Henneken, Edwin A.; Grant, Carolyn S.; Thompson, Donna; Chyla, Roman; Holachek, Alexandra; Sudilovsky, Vladimir; Murray, Stephen S.

    2015-01-01

    In this poster we describe the developments of the new ADS platform over the past year, focusing on the functionality which improves its discovery and curation capabilities.The ADS Application Programming Interface (API) is being updated to support authenticated access to the entire suite of ADS services, in addition to the search functionality itself. This allows programmatic access to resources which are specific to a user or class of users.A new interface, built directly on top of the API, now provides a more intuitive search experience and takes into account the best practices in web usability and responsive design. The interface now incorporates in-line views of graphics from the AAS Astroexplorer and the ADS All-Sky Survey image collections.The ADS Private Libraries, first introduced over 10 years ago, are now being enhanced to allow the bookmarking, tagging and annotation of records of interest. In addition, libraries can be shared with one or more ADS users, providing an easy way to collaborate in the curation of lists of papers. A library can also be explicitly made public and shared at large via the publishing of its URL.In collaboration with the AAS, the ADS plans to support the adoption of ORCID identifiers by implementing a plugin which will simplify the import of papers in ORCID via a query to the ADS API. Deeper integration between the two systems will depend on available resources and feedback from the community.

  12. Metoprolol Improves Endothelial Function in Patients with Cardiac Syndrome X

    PubMed Central

    Majidinia, Maryam; Rasmi, Yousef; Khadem Ansari, Mohammad Hassan; Seyed-Mohammadzad, MirHossein; Saboory, Ehsan; Shirpoor, Alireza

    2016-01-01

    Endothelial dysfunction which is manifested by the loss of nitric oxide bioavailability, is an increasingly recognized cause of cardiac syndrome X (CSX) and beta blockers are used for the treatment of this syndrome. Thus, the aim of this study was to investigate effects of metoprolol, as a beta blocker, on endothelial function in CSX patients. The study included 25 CSX patients (20 female/ 5 male, mean age: 55.36±10.31 years) who received metoprolol (50 mg BID) for one month. In addition, 25 healthy controls (20 female/ 5 male, mean age: 54.32 ±9.27 years) were enrolled. Levels of endothelin-1, E-selectin, and vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1) in controls and CSX patients were measured, both at the baseline and after the treatment, by the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. In CSX patients, at the baseline, levels of E-selectin and VCAM-1 were significantly higher than those of the controls. In addition, levels of these biomarkers in CSX patients after the treatment significantly decreased compared to the baseline. In spite of similar tendency, these differences were not significant for endothelin-1. In conclusion, metoprolol therapy improves endothelial function. Thus, it may be a suggested choice for CSX treatment. However, further studies are needed to confirm the clinical significance of metoprolol therapy for CSX patients. PMID:27980592

  13. Contractility of sphincter pharyngoplasty: Relevance to speech outcomes

    PubMed Central

    Hubbard, Bradley A; Rice, Gale; Muzaffar, Arshad R

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Sphincter pharyngoplasty has demonstrated time-tested results as a surgical treatment for velopharyngeal incompetence (VPI). However, controversy surrounding the contractility of the transposed muscles persists. Completely unaddressed in the literature is whether the dynamism of the sphincter affects speech outcomes. OBJECTIVE: To determine whether active sphincter contraction following sphincter pharyngoplasty influences velopharyngeal closure, nasal emission and hypernasality. METHODS: A prospective analysis of patients with VPI after cleft palate repair undergoing sphincter pharyngoplasty by a single surgeon was performed. Video nasendoscopy and videofluoroscopy were performed preoperatively and postoperatively at three and 12 months. Eighteen consecutive patients with cleft palate with or without cleft lip and VPI were reviewed. The average age of the patients at initial evaluation was 7.3 years, with a range of three to 19 years. Dynamicity of sphincter pharyngoplasty, velar closing ratio (VCR), and lateral wall movement (LWM) were assessed by nasendoscopy and videofluoroscopy. Nasal emission and hypernasality were assessed by perceptual speech examination. RESULTS: For longitudinal comparison, three groups were created: dynamic at three and 12 months (n=12); adynamic at three months and dynamic at 12 months (n=4); and adynamic at three and 12 months (n=2). Perceived hypernasality scores significantly improved at three months (P=0.0001) and showed continued improvement at 12 months (P=0.03), despite no change in VCR and LWM from three to 12 months. There were no significant differences among the three groups at any time point. DISCUSSION: Sphincter pharyngoplasty effectively treats VPI in appropriately selected patients. Although the VCR and LWM remained stable between three months and one year, four of six adynamic sphincters became dynamic. Considering all patients, hypernasality showed continued improvement from three months to one year

  14. The heart in Duchenne muscular dystrophy: early detection of contractile performance alteration

    PubMed Central

    Wagner, Sören; Knipp, Stephan; Weber, Cornelia; Hein, Selina; Schinkel, Stefanie; Walther, Andreas; Bekeredjian, Raffi; Müller, Oliver J; Friedrich, Oliver

    2012-01-01

    Progressive cardiomyopathy is a major cause of death in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) patients. Coupling between Ca2+ handling and contractile properties in dystrophic hearts is poorly understood. It is also not clear whether developing cardiac failure is dominated by alterations in Ca2+ pathways or more related to the contractile apparatus. We simultaneously recorded force and Ca2+ transients in field-stimulated papillary muscles from young (10–14 weeks) wild-type (wt) and dystrophic mdx mice. Force amplitudes were fivefold reduced in mdx muscles despite only 30 % reduction in fura-2 ratio amplitudes. This indicated mechanisms other than systolic Ca2+ to additionally account for force decrements in mdx muscles. pCa-force relations revealed decreased mdx myofibrillar Ca2+ sensitivity. ‘In vitro’ motility assays, studied in mdx hearts here for the first time, showed significantly slower sliding velocities. mdx MLC/MHC isoforms were not grossly altered. Dystrophic hearts showed echocardiography signs of early ventricular wall hypertrophy with a significantly enlarged end-diastolic diameter ‘in vivo’. However, fractional shortening was still comparable to wt mice. Changes in the contractile apparatus satisfactorily explained force drop in mdx hearts. We give first evidence of early hypertrophy in mdx mice and possible mechanisms for already functional impairment of cardiac muscle in DMD. PMID:22970922

  15. Contractile properties of human prostate adenomas and the development of infravesical obstruction.

    PubMed

    Gup, D I; Shapiro, E; Baumann, M; Lepor, H

    1989-01-01

    The contractile response of human prostate adenomas to KCl, phenylephrine (alpha 1 adrenergic agonist), UK 14304 (alpha 2 adrenergic agonist), and carbachol (muscarinic cholinergic agonist) was evaluated in tissue specimens obtained from men with symptomatic and asymptomatic BPH. Prostate specimens were obtained from 5 men with asymptomatic BPH undergoing cystoprostatectomy, 11 men with symptomatic BPH undergoing open prostatectomy, and 11 men with symptomatic BPH undergoing transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP). Quantitative symptom score analysis and urinary flow rate determination documented the absence of bladder outlet obstruction in men undergoing cystoprostatectomy and confirmed the presence of bladder outlet obstruction in men undergoing prostatectomy. The magnitude of the contractile response (Emax) and the potency of phenylephrine-induced contractions (EC50) in prostatic preparations obtained from men with symptomatic and asymptomatic BPH were similar. The IC50 for the inhibition of phenylephrine-induced contractions by prazosin was 3.2 nM, confirming that phenylephrine-induced contraction in the human prostate is mediated by the alpha 1 adrenoceptor. The contractile responses of prostate adenomas to muscarinic cholinergic and alpha 2 agonists were negligible. This study demonstrates that the development of bladder outlet obstruction in men with BPH is not related to alterations in the functional response of the smooth muscle component of the prostate adenoma.

  16. Metabolites of MDMA induce oxidative stress and contractile dysfunction in adult rat left ventricular myocytes.

    PubMed

    Shenouda, Sylvia K; Varner, Kurt J; Carvalho, Felix; Lucchesi, Pamela A

    2009-03-01

    Repeated administration of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) (ecstasy) produces eccentric left ventricular (LV) dilation and diastolic dysfunction. While the mechanism(s) underlying this toxicity are unknown, oxidative stress plays an important role. MDMA is metabolized into redox cycling metabolites that produce superoxide. In this study, we demonstrated that metabolites of MDMA induce oxidative stress and contractile dysfunction in adult rat left ventricular myocytes. Metabolites of MDMA used in this study included alpha-methyl dopamine, N-methyl alpha-methyl dopamine and 2,5-bis(glutathion-S-yl)-alpha-MeDA. Dihydroethidium was used to detect drug-induced increases in reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in ventricular myocytes. Contractile function and changes in intracellular calcium transients were measured in paced (1 Hz), Fura-2 AM loaded, myocytes using the IonOptix system. Production of ROS in ventricular myocytes treated with MDMA was not different from control. In contrast, all three metabolites of MDMA exhibited time- and concentration-dependent increases in ROS that were prevented by N-acetyl-cysteine (NAC). The metabolites of MDMA, but not MDMA alone, significantly decreased contractility and impaired relaxation in myocytes stimulated at 1 Hz. These effects were prevented by NAC. Together, these data suggest that MDMA-induced oxidative stress in the left ventricle can be due, at least in part, to the metabolism of MDMA to redox active metabolites.

  17. The effects of Ginseng Java root extract on uterine contractility in nonpregnant rats

    PubMed Central

    Sukwan, Catthareeya; Wray, Susan; Kupittayanant, Sajeera

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Ginseng Java or Talinum paniculatum (Jacq.) Geartn has long been used in herbal recipes because of its various therapeutic properties. Ginseng Java is believed to be beneficial to the female reproductive system by inducing lactation and restoring uterine functions after the postpartum period. There are, however, no scientific data on verifying the effects on the uterus to support its therapeutic relevance. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of Ginseng Java root extract and its possible mechanism(s) of action on uterine contractility. Female virgin rats were humanely killed by CO2 asphyxia and uteri removed. Isometric force was measured in strips of longitudinal myometrium. The effects of Ginseng Java root extract at its IC50 concentration (0.23 mg/mL) on spontaneous, oxytocin‐induced (10 nmol/L), and depolarized (KCl 40 mmol/L) contraction were investigated. After establishing regular phasic contractions, the application of Java root extract significantly inhibited spontaneous uterine contractility (n =5). The extract also significantly inhibited the contraction induced by high KCl solution (n =5) and oxytocin (n =5). The extract also inhibited oxytocin‐induced contraction in the absence of external Ca entry (n =7) and the tonic force induced by oxytocin in the presence of high KCl solution. Taken together, the data demonstrate a potent and consistent ability of extract from Ginseng Java root to reduce myometrial contractility. The tocolytic effects were demonstrated on both spontaneous and agonist‐induced contractions. The fact that force was inhibited in depolarized conditions suggests that the possible mechanisms may be blockade of Ca influx via L‐type Ca channels. The data in Ca‐free solutions suggest that the extract also reduces IP3‐induced Ca release from the internal store. These tocolytic effects do not support the use of ginseng to help with postpartum contractility, but instead suggest it may be

  18. A Potential Role for Differential Contractility in Early Brain Development and Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Filas, Benjamen A.; Oltean, Alina; Beebe, David C.; Okamoto, Ruth J.; Bayly, Philip V.; Taber, Larry A

    2012-01-01

    Differences in brain structure between species have long fascinated evolutionary biologists. Understanding how these differences arise requires knowing how they are generated in the embryo. Growing evidence in the field of evolutionary developmental biology (evo-devo) suggests that morphological differences between species result largely from changes in the spatiotemporal regulation of gene expression during development. Corresponding changes in functional cellular behaviors (morphogenetic mechanisms) are only beginning to be explored, however. Here we show that spatiotemporal patterns of tissue contractility are sufficient to explain differences in morphology of the early embryonic brain between disparate species. We found that enhancing cytoskeletal contraction in the embryonic chick brain with calyculin A alters the distribution of contractile proteins on the apical side of the neuroepithelium and changes relatively round cross sections of the tubular brain into shapes resembling triangles, diamonds, and narrow slits. These perturbed shapes, as well as overall brain morphology, are remarkably similar to those of corresponding sections normally found in species such as zebrafish and frog. Tissue staining revealed relatively strong concentration of F-actin at vertices of hyper-contracted cross sections, and a finite element model shows that local contraction in these regions can convert circular sections into the observed shapes. Another model suggests that these variations in contractility depend on the initial geometry of the brain tube, as localized contraction may be needed to open the initially closed lumen in normal zebrafish and Xenopus (frog) brains, whereas this contractile machinery is not necessary in chick brains, which are already open when first created. We conclude that interspecies differences in cytoskeletal contraction may play a larger role in generating differences in morphology, and at much earlier developmental stages, in the brain than

  19. Ascribing Functions to Genes: Journey Towards Genetic Improvement of Rice Via Functional Genomics

    PubMed Central

    Mustafiz, Ananda; Kumari, Sumita; Karan, Ratna

    2016-01-01

    Rice, one of the most important cereal crops for mankind, feeds more than half the world population. Rice has been heralded as a model cereal owing to its small genome size, amenability to easy transformation, high synteny to other cereal crops and availability of complete genome sequence. Moreover, sequence wealth in rice is getting more refined and precise due to resequencing efforts. This humungous resource of sequence data has confronted research fraternity with a herculean challenge as well as an excellent opportunity to functionally validate expressed as well as regulatory portions of the genome. This will not only help us in understanding the genetic basis of plant architecture and physiology but would also steer us towards developing improved cultivars. No single technique can achieve such a mammoth task. Functional genomics through its diverse tools viz. loss and gain of function mutants, multifarious omics strategies like transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics and phenomics provide us with the necessary handle. A paradigm shift in technological advances in functional genomics strategies has been instrumental in generating considerable amount of information w.r.t functionality of rice genome. We now have several databases and online resources for functionally validated genes but despite that we are far from reaching the desired milestone of functionally characterizing each and every rice gene. There is an urgent need for a common platform, for information already available in rice, and collaborative efforts between researchers in a concerted manner as well as healthy public-private partnership, for genetic improvement of rice crop better able to handle the pressures of climate change and exponentially increasing population. PMID:27252584

  20. Dual NEP/ECE inhibition improves endothelial function in mesenteric resistance arteries of 32-week-old SHR.

    PubMed

    Lemkens, Pieter; Spijkers, Leon Ja; Meens, Merlijn J; Nelissen, Jelly; Janssen, Ben; Peters, Stephan Lm; Schiffers, Paul Mh; De Mey, Jo Gr

    2017-03-16

    Endothelin 1 (ET-1), a potent vasoconstrictor, pro-mitogenic and pro-inflammatory peptide, may promote development of endothelial dysfunction and arterial remodeling. ET-1 can be formed through cleavage of big-ET-1 by endothelin-converting enzyme (ECE) or neutral endopeptidase (NEP). We investigated whether chronic treatment with the novel dual NEP/ECE inhibitor SOL1 improves functional and structural properties of resistance-sized arteries of 32-week-old male spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR). SHR received a chronic 4-week treatment with SOL1, losartan or hydralazine. We then compared effects of inhibition of NO synthase (NOS) (100 μM l-NAME), blockade of ETA- and ETB-receptors (10 μM bosentan) and stimulation of the endothelium with 0.001-10 μM acetylcholine (ACh) in isolated third-order mesenteric resistance arteries. Losartan and hydralazine significantly lowered blood pressure. Losartan decreased the media-to-lumen ratio of resistance arteries. l-NAME (1) increased arterial contractile responses to K(+) (5.9-40 mM) in the losartan, SOL1 and vehicle group and (2) increased the sensitivity to phenylephrine (PHE; 0.16-20 μM) in the SOL1 group but not in the losartan, hydralazine and vehicle group. Relaxing responses to ACh in the absence or presence of l-NAME during contractions induced by either 10 μM PHE or 40 mM K(+) were not altered by any in vivo treatment. Acute treatment with bosentan did, however, significantly improve maximal relaxing responses involving endothelium-derived nitric oxide and -hyperpolarizing factors in the SOL1 group but not in the losartan, hydralazine or vehicle group. Thus, chronic inhibition of NEP/ECE improved basal endothelial function but did not alter blood pressure, resistance artery structure and stimulated endothelium-dependent relaxing responses in 32-week-old SHR.Hypertension Research advance online publication, 16 March 2017; doi:10.1038/hr.2017.38.

  1. Effects of Hindlimb Unweighting on Arterial Contractile Responses in Mice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ma, Jia; Ren, Xin-Ling; Purdy, Ralph E.

    2003-01-01

    The aim of this work was to determine if hindlimb unweighting in mice alters arterial contractile responses. Sixteen male C57B/6 mice and 16 male Chinese Kunming mice were divided into control and 3 weeks hindlimb unweighting groups, respectively. Using isolated arterial rings from different arteries of mouse, effects of 3 weeks hindlimb unweighting on arterial contractile responsiveness were examined in vitro. The results showed that, in arterial rings from both C57B/6 and Chinese Kunming mice, maximum isometric contractile tensions evoked by either KCl or phenylephrine were significantly lower in abdominal aortic, mesenteric arterial and femoral arterial rings from hindlimb unweighting, compared to control mice. However, the maximal contractile responses of common carotid rings to KCl and PE were not significantly different between control and hindlimb unweighting groups. The sensitivity (EC(sub 50)) of all arteries to KCl or PE showed no significant differences between control and hindlimb unweighting mice. These data indicated that 3 weeks hindlimb unweighting results in a reduced capacity of the arterial smooth muscle of the hindquarter to develop tension. In addition, the alterations in arterial contractile responses caused by hindlimb unweighting in mice are similar as those in rats. Our work suggested that hindlimb unweighting mouse model may be used as a model for the study of postflight cardiovascular deconditioning.

  2. Boosting brain functions: Improving executive functions with behavioral training, neurostimulation, and neurofeedback.

    PubMed

    Enriquez-Geppert, Stefanie; Huster, René J; Herrmann, Christoph S

    2013-04-01

    Cognitive enhancement is a popular topic, attracting attention both from the general public and the scientific research community. Higher cognitive functions are involved in various aspects of everyday life and have been associated with manifest behavioral and psychiatric mental impairments when deteriorated. The improvement of these so-called executive functions (EFs) is of high individual, social, and economic relevances. This review provides a synopsis of two lines of research, investigating the enhancement of capabilities in executive functioning: a) computerized behavioral trainings, and b) approaches for direct neuromodulation (neurofeedback and transcranial electrostimulation). Task switching, memory updating, response inhibition, and dual task performance are addressed in terms of cognitive functions. It has been shown that behavioral cognitive training leads to enhanced performance in task switching, memory updating, and dual tasks. Similarly, direct neurocognitive modulation of brain regions that are crucially involved in specific EFs also leads to behavioral benefits in response inhibition, task switching, and memory updating. Response inhibition performance has been shown to be improved by neurostimulation of the right inferior frontal cortex, whereas neurostimulation of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex exerts effects on task switching and memory updating. Due to a lack of consistency in experimental methods and findings, a comparison of different training approaches concerning their effectiveness is not yet possible. So far, current data suggest that training gains may indeed generalize to untrained tasks aiming at the same cognitive process, as well as across cognitive domains within executive control.

  3. Serum response factor regulates smooth muscle contractility via myotonic dystrophy protein kinases and L-type calcium channels

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Moon Young; Park, Chanjae; Ha, Se Eun; Park, Paul J.; Berent, Robyn M.; Jorgensen, Brian G.; Corrigan, Robert D.; Grainger, Nathan; Blair, Peter J.; Slivano, Orazio J.; Miano, Joseph M.; Ward, Sean M.; Smith, Terence K.; Sanders, Kenton M.

    2017-01-01

    Serum response factor (SRF) transcriptionally regulates expression of contractile genes in smooth muscle cells (SMC). Lack or decrease of SRF is directly linked to a phenotypic change of SMC, leading to hypomotility of smooth muscle in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. However, the molecular mechanism behind SRF-induced hypomotility in GI smooth muscle is largely unknown. We describe here how SRF plays a functional role in the regulation of the SMC contractility via myotonic dystrophy protein kinase (DMPK) and L-type calcium channel CACNA1C. GI SMC expressed Dmpk and Cacna1c genes into multiple alternative transcriptional isoforms. Deficiency of SRF in SMC of Srf knockout (KO) mice led to reduction of SRF-dependent DMPK, which down-regulated the expression of CACNA1C. Reduction of CACNA1C in KO SMC not only decreased intracellular Ca2+ spikes but also disrupted their coupling between cells resulting in decreased contractility. The role of SRF in the regulation of SMC phenotype and function provides new insight into how SMC lose their contractility leading to hypomotility in pathophysiological conditions within the GI tract. PMID:28152551

  4. Improvement of tactile roughness discrimination acuity correlates with perception of improved hand function in patients after hand surgery.

    PubMed

    Fujimoto, Shuhei; Kon, Noriko

    2016-04-01

    [Purpose] The purpose of this study was to elucidate how well patients' perceptions related to the improvements in their hand function during hospitalization. [Subjects] Sixteen patients who were hospitalized after hand surgery. [Methods] Using the Japanese Society for Surgery of the Hand edition of the Quick-Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand questionnaire; tactile roughness discrimination acuity, motor imagery, motor function, sensory function, and pain of the upper limb were assessed at admission and discharge. Spearman's rank-order correlation coefficients were calculated using the differences in all assessment items at admission and discharge. A multiple regression analysis (stepwise method) was performed to investigate factors that correlated with improvements in Quick-Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand scores. [Results] The improvement of tactile roughness discrimination acuity was significantly associated with patient perception of improved hand function. [Conclusion] The results suggest that an improvement in tactile roughness discrimination acuity was most strongly correlated with patient perception of improved hand function.

  5. Aldehyde dehydrogenase 2 activation in heart failure restores mitochondrial function and improves ventricular function and remodelling

    PubMed Central

    Gomes, Katia M.S.; Campos, Juliane C.; Bechara, Luiz R.G.; Queliconi, Bruno; Lima, Vanessa M.; Disatnik, Marie-Helene; Magno, Paulo; Chen, Che-Hong; Brum, Patricia C.; Kowaltowski, Alicia J.; Mochly-Rosen, Daria; Ferreira, Julio C.B.

    2014-01-01

    Aims We previously demonstrated that pharmacological activation of mitochondrial aldehyde dehydrogenase 2 (ALDH2) protects the heart against acute ischaemia/reperfusion injury. Here, we determined the benefits of chronic activation of ALDH2 on the progression of heart failure (HF) using a post-myocardial infarction model. Methods and results We showed that a 6-week treatment of myocardial infarction-induced HF rats with a selective ALDH2 activator (Alda-1), starting 4 weeks after myocardial infarction at a time when ventricular remodelling and cardiac dysfunction were present, improved cardiomyocyte shortening, cardiac function, left ventricular compliance and diastolic function under basal conditions, and after isoproterenol stimulation. Importantly, sustained Alda-1 treatment showed no toxicity and promoted a cardiac anti-remodelling effect by suppressing myocardial hypertrophy and fibrosis. Moreover, accumulation of 4-hydroxynonenal (4-HNE)-protein adducts and protein carbonyls seen in HF was not observed in Alda-1-treated rats, suggesting that increasing the activity of ALDH2 contributes to the reduction of aldehydic load in failing hearts. ALDH2 activation was associated with improved mitochondrial function, including elevated mitochondrial respiratory control ratios and reduced H2O2 release. Importantly, selective ALDH2 activation decreased mitochondrial Ca2+-induced permeability transition and cytochrome c release in failing hearts. Further supporting a mitochondrial mechanism for ALDH2, Alda-1 treatment preserved mitochondrial function upon in vitro aldehydic load. Conclusions Selective activation of mitochondrial ALDH2 is sufficient to improve the HF outcome by reducing the toxic effects of aldehydic overload on mitochondrial bioenergetics and reactive oxygen species generation, suggesting that ALDH2 activators, such as Alda-1, have a potential therapeutic value for treating HF patients. PMID:24817685

  6. Stimulus Characteristics for Vestibular Stochastic Resonance to Improve Balance Function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mulavara, Ajitkumar; Fiedler, Matthew; Kofman, Igor; Peters, Brian; Wood, Scott; Serrado, Jorge; Cohen, Helen; Reschke, Millard; Bloomberg, Jacob

    2010-01-01

    Stochastic resonance (SR) is a mechanism by which noise can enhance the response of neural systems to relevant sensory signals. Studies have shown that imperceptible stochastic vestibular electrical stimulation, when applied to normal young and elderly subjects, significantly improved their ocular stabilization reflexes in response to whole-body tilt as well as balance performance during postural disturbances. The goal of this study was to optimize the amplitude characteristics of the stochastic vestibular signals for balance performance during standing on an unstable surface. Subjects performed a standard balance task of standing on a block of foam with their eyes closed. Bipolar stochastic electrical stimulation was applied to the vestibular system using constant current stimulation through electrodes placed over the mastoid process behind the ears. Amplitude of the signals varied in the range of 0-700 microamperes. Balance performance was measured using a force plate under the foam block, and inertial motion sensors were placed on the torso and head. Balance performance with stimulation was significantly greater (10%-25%) than with no stimulation. The signal amplitude at which performance was maximized was in the range of 100-300 microamperes. Optimization of the amplitude of the stochastic signals for maximizing balance performance will have a significant impact on development of vestibular SR as a unique system to aid recovery of function in astronauts after long-duration space flight or in patients with balance disorders.

  7. A device for the functional improvement of lagophthalmos.

    PubMed

    Aşik, Mehmet Doğan; Yaprak, Bülent; Güven, Erdem; Karabulut, Aylin Bilgin; Güçlü, Burak

    2013-07-01

    A new device was tested on rabbits for the improvement of lagophthalmos, which causes dryness and irritation of the eye and may cause blindness if untreated. In the presented study, 14 rabbits were injected with local anesthetic to induce temporary facial palsy leading to lagophthalmos on one side. To provide functionality to the upper eyelids, ferromagnetic steel plates were either implanted within the eyelid or taped on the eyelid surface. The device detected blinking in the nonparalytic side and moved the anesthetized paralytic eyelid by pulling the steel plate electromagnetically. The control group (n = 5) did not wear the device, and they could not shut their paralytic eyelids. The treatment group with the external placement of the metal plate (n = 4) and the treatment group with the implant (n = 5) wore the device for artificial blinking. All animals were observed during the experiments, and blinking was recorded on digital video. The data collected from video records were analyzed to test the statistical difference of blinking between control and the treated groups. The results showed that the treatment groups could artificially move their paralytic eyelids. Furthermore, the treatment group with the implant showed a noticeable similarity in eyelid position compared with healthy (nonparalytic) eyes.

  8. Applying Quality Function Deployment Model in Burn Unit Service Improvement.

    PubMed

    Keshtkaran, Ali; Hashemi, Neda; Kharazmi, Erfan; Abbasi, Mehdi

    2016-01-01

    Quality function deployment (QFD) is one of the most effective quality design tools. This study applies QFD technique to improve the quality of the burn unit services in Ghotbedin Hospital in Shiraz, Iran. First, the patients' expectations of burn unit services and their priorities were determined through Delphi method. Thereafter, burn unit service specifications were determined through Delphi method. Further, the relationships between the patients' expectations and service specifications and also the relationships between service specifications were determined through an expert group's opinion. Last, the final importance scores of service specifications were calculated through simple additive weighting method. The findings show that burn unit patients have 40 expectations in six different areas. These expectations are in 16 priority levels. Burn units also have 45 service specifications in six different areas. There are four-level relationships between the patients' expectations and service specifications and four-level relationships between service specifications. The most important burn unit service specifications have been identified in this study. The QFD model developed in the study can be a general guideline for QFD planners and executives.

  9. Genetically enhancing mitochondrial antioxidant activity improves muscle function in aging.

    PubMed

    Umanskaya, Alisa; Santulli, Gaetano; Xie, Wenjun; Andersson, Daniel C; Reiken, Steven R; Marks, Andrew R

    2014-10-21

    Age-related skeletal muscle dysfunction is a leading cause of morbidity that affects up to half the population aged 80 or greater. Here we tested the effects of increased mitochondrial antioxidant activity on age-dependent skeletal muscle dysfunction using transgenic mice with targeted overexpression of the human catalase gene to mitochondria (MCat mice). Aged MCat mice exhibited improved voluntary exercise, increased skeletal muscle specific force and tetanic Ca(2+) transients, decreased intracellular Ca(2+) leak and increased sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca(2+) load compared with age-matched wild type (WT) littermates. Furthermore, ryanodine receptor 1 (the sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) release channel required for skeletal muscle contraction; RyR1) from aged MCat mice was less oxidized, depleted of the channel stabilizing subunit, calstabin1, and displayed increased single channel open probability (Po). Overall, these data indicate a direct role for mitochondrial free radicals in promoting the pathological intracellular Ca(2+) leak that underlies age-dependent loss of skeletal muscle function. This study harbors implications for the development of novel therapeutic strategies, including mitochondria-targeted antioxidants for treatment of mitochondrial myopathies and other healthspan-limiting disorders.

  10. Tridecanoin is anticonvulsant, antioxidant, and improves mitochondrial function.

    PubMed

    Tan, Kah Ni; Carrasco-Pozo, Catalina; McDonald, Tanya S; Puchowicz, Michelle; Borges, Karin

    2016-07-14

    The hypothesis that chronic feeding of the triglycerides of octanoate (trioctanoin) and decanoate (tridecanoin) in "a regular non-ketogenic diet" is anticonvulsant was tested and possible mechanisms of actions were subsequently investigated. Chronic feeding of 35E% of calories from tridecanoin, but not trioctanoin, was reproducibly anticonvulsant in two acute CD1 mouse seizure models. The levels of beta-hydroxybutyrate in plasma and brain were not significantly increased by either treatment relative to control diet. The respective decanoate and octanoate levels are 76 µM and 33 µM in plasma and 1.17 and 2.88 nmol/g in brain. Tridecanoin treatment did not alter the maximal activities of several glycolytic enzymes, suggesting that there is no reduction in glycolysis contributing to anticonvulsant effects. In cultured astrocytes, 200 µM of octanoic and decanoic acids increased basal respiration and ATP turnover, suggesting that both medium chain fatty acids are used as fuel. Only decanoic acid increased mitochondrial proton leak which may reduce oxidative stress. In mitochondria isolated from hippocampal formations, tridecanoin increased respiration linked to ATP synthesis, indicating that mitochondrial metabolic functions are improved. In addition, tridecanoin increased the plasma antioxidant capacity and hippocampal mRNA levels of heme oxygenase 1, and FoxO1.

  11. Qishen Yiqi Drop Pill improves cardiac function after myocardial ischemia

    PubMed Central

    JianXin, Chen; Xue, Xu; ZhongFeng, Li; Kuo, Gao; FeiLong, Zhang; ZhiHong, Li; Xian, Wang; HongCai, Shang

    2016-01-01

    Myocardial ischemia (MI) is one of the leading causes of death, while Qishen Yiqi Drop Pill (QYDP) is a representative traditional Chinese medicine to treat this disease. Unveiling the pharmacological mechanism of QYDP will provide a great opportunity to promote the development of novel drugs to treat MI. 64 male Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats were divided into four groups: MI model group, sham operation group, QYDP treatment group and Fosinopril treatment group. Echocardiography results showed that QYDP exhibited significantly larger LV end-diastolic dimension (LVEDd) and LV end-systolic dimension (LVEDs), compared with the MI model group, indicating the improved cardiac function by QYDP. 1H-NMR based metabonomics further identify 9 significantly changed metabolites in the QYDP treatment group, and the QYDP-related proteins based on the protein-metabolite interaction networks and the corresponding pathways were explored, involving the pyruvate metabolism pathway, the retinol metabolism pathway, the tyrosine metabolism pathway and the purine metabolism pathway, suggesting that QYDP was closely associated with blood circulation. ELISA tests were further employed to identify NO synthase (iNOS) and cathepsin K (CTSK) in the networks. For the first time, our work combined experimental and computational methods to study the mechanism of the formula of traditional Chinese medicine. PMID:27075394

  12. Emulsion design to improve the delivery of functional lipophilic components.

    PubMed

    McClements, David Julian

    2010-01-01

    The food industry has used emulsion science and technology for many years to create a diverse range of food products, such as milk, cream, soft drinks, nutritional beverages, dressings, mayonnaise, sauces, dips, deserts, ice cream, margarine, and butter. The majority of these food products are conventional oil-in-water (O/W) or water-in-oil (W/O) type emulsions. Recently, there has been increasing interest within the food industry in either improving or extending the functional performance of foods using novel structured emulsions. This article reviews recent developments in the creation of structured emulsions that could be used by the food and other industries, including nanoemulsions, multiple emulsions, multilayer emulsions, solid lipid particles, and filled hydrogel particles. These structured emulsions can be produced from food-grade [generally recognized as safe (GRAS)] ingredients (e.g., lipids, proteins, polysaccharides, surfactants, and minerals), using simple processing operations (e.g., mixing, homogenizing, and thermal processing). The structure, production, performance, and potential applications of each type of structured emulsion system are discussed.

  13. How to make rapid eye movements “rapid”: the role of growth factors for muscle contractile properties

    PubMed Central

    Li, Tian; Feng, Cheng-Yuan

    2011-01-01

    Different muscle functions require different muscle contraction properties. Saccade-generating extraocular muscles (EOMs) are the fastest muscles in the human body, significantly faster than limb skeletal muscles. Muscle contraction speed is subjected to plasticity, i.e., contraction speed can be adjusted to serve different demands, but little is known about the molecular mechanisms that control contraction speed. Therefore, we examined whether myogenic growth factors modulate contractile properties, including twitch contraction time (onset of force to peak force) and half relaxation time (peak force to half relaxation). We examined effects of three muscle-derived growth factors: insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1), cardiotrophin-1 (CT1), and glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF). In gain-of-function experiments, CT1 or GDNF injected into the orbit shortened contraction time, and IGF1 or CT1 shortened half relaxation time. In loss-of-function experiments with binding proteins or neutralizing antibodies, elimination of endogenous IGFs prolonged both contraction time and half relaxation time, while eliminating endogenous GDNF prolonged contraction time, with no effect on half relaxation time. Elimination of endogenous IGFs or CT1, but not GDNF, significantly reduced contractile force. Thus, IGF1, CT1, and GDNF have partially overlapping but not identical effects on muscle contractile properties. Expression of these three growth factors was measured in chicken and/or rat EOMs by real-time PCR. The “fast” EOMs express significantly more message encoding these growth factors and their receptors than skeletal muscles with slower contractile properties. Taken together, these findings indicate that EOM contractile kinetics is regulated by the amount of myogenic growth factors available to the muscle. PMID:21279379

  14. An improved version of the Green's function molecular dynamics method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kong, Ling Ti; Denniston, Colin; Müser, Martin H.

    2011-02-01

    This work presents an improved version of the Green's function molecular dynamics method (Kong et al., 2009; Campañá and Müser, 2004 [1,2]), which enables one to study the elastic response of a three-dimensional solid to an external stress field by taking into consideration only atoms near the surface. In the previous implementation, the effective elastic coefficients measured at the Γ-point were altered to reduce finite size effects: their eigenvalues corresponding to the acoustic modes were set to zero. This scheme was found to work well for simple Bravais lattices as long as only atoms within the last layer were treated as Green's function atoms. However, it failed to function as expected in all other cases. It turns out that a violation of the acoustic sum rule for the effective elastic coefficients at Γ (Kong, 2010 [3]) was responsible for this behavior. In the new version, the acoustic sum rule is enforced by adopting an iterative procedure, which is found to be physically more meaningful than the previous one. In addition, the new algorithm allows one to treat lattices with bases and the Green's function slab is no longer confined to one layer. New version program summaryProgram title: FixGFC/FixGFMD v1.12 Catalogue identifier: AECW_v1_1 Program summary URL:http://cpc.cs.qub.ac.uk/summaries/AECW_v1_1.html Program obtainable from: CPC Program Library, Queen's University, Belfast, N. Ireland Licensing provisions: Standard CPC licence, http://cpc.cs.qub.ac.uk/licence/licence.html No. of lines in distributed program, including test data, etc.: 206 436 No. of bytes in distributed program, including test data, etc.: 4 314 850 Distribution format: tar.gz Programming language: C++ Computer: All Operating system: Linux Has the code been vectorized or parallelized?: Yes. Code has been parallelized using MPI directives. RAM: Depends on the problem Classification: 7.7 External routines: LAMMPS ( http://lammps.sandia.gov/), MPI ( http

  15. [A basis for application of cardiac contractility variability in the Evaluation and assessment of exercise and fitness].

    PubMed

    Bu, Bin; Wang, Aihua; Han, Haijun; Xiao, Shouzhong

    2010-06-01

    Cardiac contractility variability (CCV) is a new concept which is introduced in the research field of cardiac contractility in recent years, that is to say, there are some disparities between cardiac contractilities when heart contracts. The changing signals of cardiac contractility contain a plenty of information on the cardiovascular function and disorder. In order to collect and analyze the message, we could quantitatively evaluate the tonicity and equilibrium of cardiac sympathetic nerve and parasympathetic nerve, and the effects of bio-molecular mechanism on the cardiovascular activities. By analyzing CCV, we could further understand the background of human being's heritage characteristics, nerve types, the adjusting mechanism, the molecular biology, and the adjustment of cardiac automatic nerve. With the development of the computing techniques, the digital signal processing method and its application in medical field, this analysis has been progressing greatly. By now, the assessment of CCV, just like the analysis of heart rate variability, is mainly via time domain and frequency domain analysis. CCV is one of the latest research fields in human cardiac signals being scarcely reported in the field of sports medicine; however, its research progresses are of important value for cardiac physiology and pathology in sports medicine and rehabilitation medicine.

  16. TRPM4 Is a Novel Component of the Adhesome Required for Focal Adhesion Disassembly, Migration and Contractility

    PubMed Central

    Cáceres, Mónica; Ortiz, Liliana; Recabarren, Tatiana; Romero, Anibal; Colombo, Alicia; Leiva-Salcedo, Elías; Varela, Diego; Rivas, José; Silva, Ian; Morales, Diego; Campusano, Camilo; Almarza, Oscar; Simon, Felipe; Toledo, Hector; Park, Kang-Sik; Trimmer, James S.; Cerda, Oscar

    2015-01-01

    Cellular migration and contractility are fundamental processes that are regulated by a variety of concerted mechanisms such as cytoskeleton rearrangements, focal adhesion turnover, and Ca2+ oscillations. TRPM4 is a Ca2+-activated non-selective cationic channel (Ca2+-NSCC) that conducts monovalent but not divalent cations. Here, we used a mass spectrometry-based proteomics approach to identify putative TRPM4-associated proteins. Interestingly, the largest group of these proteins has actin cytoskeleton-related functions, and among these nine are specifically annotated as focal adhesion-related proteins. Consistent with these results, we found that TRPM4 localizes to focal adhesions in cells from different cellular lineages. We show that suppression of TRPM4 in MEFs impacts turnover of focal adhesions, serum-induced Ca2+ influx, focal adhesion kinase (FAK) and Rac activities, and results in reduced cellular spreading, migration and contractile behavior. Finally, we demonstrate that the inhibition of TRPM4 activity alters cellular contractility in vivo, affecting cutaneous wound healing. Together, these findings provide the first evidence, to our knowledge, for a TRP channel specifically localized to focal adhesions, where it performs a central role in modulating cellular migration and contractility. PMID:26110647

  17. Effects of testosterone on contractile properties of sexually dimorphic forelimb muscles in male bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana, Shaw 1802)

    PubMed Central

    Kampe, Aaron R.; Peters, Susan E.

    2013-01-01

    Summary This study examined the effects of testosterone (T) on the contractile properties of two sexually dimorphic forelimb muscles and one non-dimorphic muscle in male bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana, Shaw 1802). The dimorphic muscles in castrated males with testosterone replacement (T+) achieved higher forces and lower fatigability than did castrated males without replaced testosterone (T0 males), but the magnitude of the differences was low and many of the pair-wise comparisons of each muscle property were not statistically significant. However, when taken as a whole, the means of seven contractile properties varied in the directions expected of masculine values in T+ animals in the sexually dimorphic muscles. Moreover, these data, compared with previous data on male and female bullfrogs, show that values for T+ males are similar to normal males and are significantly different from females. The T0 males tended to be intermediate in character between T+ males and females, generally retaining masculine values. This suggests that the exposure of young males to T in their first breeding season produces a masculinizing effect on the sexually dimorphic muscles that is not reversed between breeding seasons when T levels are low. The relatively minor differences in contractile properties between T+ and T0 males may indicate that as circulating T levels rise during breeding season in normal males, contractile properties can be enhanced rapidly to maximal functional levels for breeding success. PMID:24143280

  18. Myocardial contractile and metabolic properties of familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy caused by cardiac troponin I gene mutations: a simulation study.

    PubMed

    Wu, Bo; Wang, Longhui; Liu, Qian; Luo, Qingming

    2012-01-01

    Familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (FHC) is an inherited disease that is caused by sarcomeric protein gene mutations. The mechanism by which these mutant proteins cause disease is uncertain. Experimentally, cardiac troponin I (CTnI) gene mutations mainly alter myocardial performance via increases in the Ca(2+) sensitivity of cardiac contractility. In this study, we used an integrated simulation that links electrophysiology, contractile activity and energy metabolism of the myocardium to investigate alterations in myocardial contractile function and energy metabolism regulation as a result of increased Ca(2+) sensitivity in CTnI mutations. Simulation results reproduced the following typical features of FHC: (1) slower relaxation (diastolic dysfunction) caused by prolonged [Ca(2+)](i) and force transients; (2) higher energy consumption with the increase in Ca(2+) sensitivity; and (3) reduced fatty acid oxidation and enhanced glucose utilization in hypertrophied heart metabolism. Furthermore, the simulation indicated that in conditions of high energy consumption (that is, more than an 18.3% increase in total energy consumption), the myocardial energetic metabolic network switched from a net consumer to a net producer of lactate, resulting in a low coupling of glucose oxidation to glycolysis, which is a common feature of hypertrophied hearts. This study provides a novel systematic myocardial contractile and metabolic analysis to help elucidate the pathogenesis of FHC and suggests that the alterations in resting heart energy supply and demand could contribute to disease progression.

  19. Molecular organization of cytokinesis nodes and contractile rings by super-resolution fluorescence microscopy of live fission yeast

    PubMed Central

    Laplante, Caroline; Huang, Fang; Tebbs, Irene R.; Bewersdorf, Joerg; Pollard, Thomas D.

    2016-01-01

    Cytokinesis in animals, fungi, and amoebas depends on the constriction of a contractile ring built from a common set of conserved proteins. Many fundamental questions remain about how these proteins organize to generate the necessary tension for cytokinesis. Using quantitative high-speed fluorescence photoactivation localization microscopy (FPALM), we probed this question in live fission yeast cells at unprecedented resolution. We show that nodes, protein assembly precursors to the contractile ring, are discrete structural units with stoichiometric ratios and distinct distributions of constituent proteins. Anillin Mid1p, Fes/CIP4 homology-Bin/amphiphysin/Rvs (F-BAR) Cdc15p, IQ motif containing GTPase-activating protein (IQGAP) Rng2p, and formin Cdc12p form the base of the node that anchors the ends of myosin II tails to the plasma membrane, with myosin II heads extending into the cytoplasm. This general node organization persists in the contractile ring where nodes move bidirectionally during constriction. We observed the dynamics of the actin network during cytokinesis, starting with the extension of short actin strands from nodes, which sometimes connected neighboring nodes. Later in cytokinesis, a broad network of thick bundles coalesced into a tight ring around the equator of the cell. The actin ring was ∼125 nm wide and ∼125 nm thick. These observations establish the organization of the proteins in the functional units of a cytokinetic contractile ring. PMID:27647921

  20. TRPM4 Is a Novel Component of the Adhesome Required for Focal Adhesion Disassembly, Migration and Contractility.

    PubMed

    Cáceres, Mónica; Ortiz, Liliana; Recabarren, Tatiana; Romero, Anibal; Colombo, Alicia; Leiva-Salcedo, Elías; Varela, Diego; Rivas, José; Silva, Ian; Morales, Diego; Campusano, Camilo; Almarza, Oscar; Simon, Felipe; Toledo, Hector; Park, Kang-Sik; Trimmer, James S; Cerda, Oscar

    2015-01-01

    Cellular migration and contractility are fundamental processes that are regulated by a variety of concerted mechanisms such as cytoskeleton rearrangements, focal adhesion turnover, and Ca2+ oscillations. TRPM4 is a Ca2+-activated non-selective cationic channel (Ca2+-NSCC) that conducts monovalent but not divalent cations. Here, we used a mass spectrometry-based proteomics approach to identify putative TRPM4-associated proteins. Interestingly, the largest group of these proteins has actin cytoskeleton-related functions, and among these nine are specifically annotated as focal adhesion-related proteins. Consistent with these results, we found that TRPM4 localizes to focal adhesions in cells from different cellular lineages. We show that suppression of TRPM4 in MEFs impacts turnover of focal adhesions, serum-induced Ca2+ influx, focal adhesion kinase (FAK) and Rac activities, and results in reduced cellular spreading, migration and contractile behavior. Finally, we demonstrate that the inhibition of TRPM4 activity alters cellular contractility in vivo, affecting cutaneous wound healing. Together, these findings provide the first evidence, to our knowledge, for a TRP channel specifically localized to focal adhesions, where it performs a central role in modulating cellular migration and contractility.

  1. Optogenetic control of contractile function in skeletal muscle

    PubMed Central

    Bruegmann, Tobias; van Bremen, Tobias; Vogt, Christoph C.; Send, Thorsten; Fleischmann, Bernd K.; Sasse, Philipp

    2015-01-01

    Optogenetic stimulation allows activation of cells with high spatial and temporal precision. Here we show direct optogenetic stimulation of skeletal muscle from transgenic mice expressing the light-sensitive channel Channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2). Largest tetanic contractions are observed with 5-ms light pulses at 30 Hz, resulting in 84% of the maximal force induced by electrical stimulation. We demonstrate the utility of this approach by selectively stimulating with a light guide individual intralaryngeal muscles in explanted larynges from ChR2-transgenic mice, which enables selective opening and closing of the vocal cords. Furthermore, systemic injection of adeno-associated virus into wild-type mice provides sufficient ChR2 expression for optogenetic opening of the vocal cords. Thus, direct optogenetic stimulation of skeletal muscle generates large force and provides the distinct advantage of localized and cell-type-specific activation. This technology could be useful for therapeutic purposes, such as restoring the mobility of the vocal cords in patients suffering from laryngeal paralysis. PMID:26035411

  2. Teneligliptin improves left ventricular diastolic function and endothelial function in patients with diabetes.

    PubMed

    Hashikata, Takehiro; Yamaoka-Tojo, Minako; Kakizaki, Ryota; Nemoto, Teruyoshi; Fujiyoshi, Kazuhiro; Namba, Sayaka; Kitasato, Lisa; Hashimoto, Takuya; Kameda, Ryo; Maekawa, Emi; Shimohama, Takao; Tojo, Taiki; Ako, Junya

    Incretin hormones have been reported to have cytoprotective actions in addition to their glucose-lowering effects. We evaluated whether teneligliptin, a novel dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitor, affects left ventricular (LV) function in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Twenty-nine T2DM patients not receiving any incretin-based drugs were enrolled and prescribed with teneligliptin for 3 months. Compared to baseline levels, hemoglobin A1c levels decreased (7.6 ± 1.0 % to 6.9 ± 0.7 %, p < 0.01) and 1,5-anhydro-D-glucitol levels increased (9.6 ± 7.2 μg/mL to 13.5 ± 8.7 μg/mL, p < 0.01) after treatment. Clinical parameters, including body mass index and blood pressure, did not show any difference before and after treatment. Three months after treatment, there were improvements in LV systolic and diastolic function [LV ejection fraction, 62.0 ± 6.5 % to 64.5 ± 5.0 %, p = 0.01; peak early diastolic velocity/basal septal diastolic velocity (E/e') ratio, 13.3 ± 4.1 to 11.9 ± 3.3, p = 0.01]. Moreover, there was an improvement in endothelial function (reactive hyperemia peripheral arterial tonometry [RH-PAT] index; 1.58 ± 0.47 to 2.01 ± 0.72, p < 0.01). There was a significant negative correlation between changes in the E/e' ratio and RH-PAT values. Furthermore, circulating adiponectin levels increased (27.0 ± 38.5 pg/mL to 42.7 ± 33.2 pg/mL, p < 0.01) without changes in patient body weight. Teneligliptin treatment was associated with improvements in LV function and endothelial functions, and an increase in serum adiponectin levels. These results support the cardio-protective effects of teneligliptin in T2DM patients and increase in serum adiponectin levels.

  3. The effects of nitroglycerin on regional myocardial contractile dysfunction produced by treadmill exercise or isoprenaline stimulation in dogs.

    PubMed Central

    Schneider, W.; Grohs, J. G.; Krumpl, G.; Mayer, N.; Raberger, G.

    1988-01-01

    1. To compare different methods of cardiac stress testing that are clinically applied in the management of coronary heart disease, 2 groups of dogs each were chronically instrumented and subjected to treadmill exercise or isoprenaline infusion in the presence of coronary stenosis. 2. It was of interest to determine differences in haemodynamic and regional myocardial contractile parameters, the response to antianginal therapy (nitroglycerin 15 micrograms kg-1 15 min-1, i.v.), and, in particular, whether this response differed according to the mode of cardiac stimulation, i.e. treadmill exercise or isoprenaline infusion. 3. After stenosis of the circumflex branch of the left coronary artery which affected resting myocardial function only minimally, treadmill exercise or isoprenaline infusion induced transient regional contractile dysfunction. Heart rate, arterial blood pressure, left ventricular end-diastolic pressure and left ventricular dp/dtmax were registered and myocardial oxygen demand was calculated. Regional contractile performance was assessed by ultrasonic distance measurement in the underperfused and in a normally perfused area. 4. Treadmill exercise led to an increase in systolic arterial and left ventricular end-diastolic pressure. In contrast, isoprenaline-induced stimulation led to a decrease in diastolic arterial and left ventricular end-diastolic pressure. Regional contractile function in the critically underperfused area showed a deterioration during both modes of stress. Nitroglycerin completely abolished stress-induced contractile dysfunction only in the group where treadmill exercise was employed for stimulation. 5. The inability of nitroglycerin to prevent myocardial dysfunction in the isoprenaline group may be due to exhaustion of the arterial and/or venous vasodilator potency of nitroglycerin in the presence of adrenoceptor vasodilatation induced by isoprenaline. 6. These findings indicate that clinical antianginal drug testing and the

  4. Molecular mechanisms autonomic dysfunction and impaired cardiac contractility in critical illness

    PubMed Central

    Ackland, Gareth L.; Whittle, John; Toner, Andrew; Machhada, Asif; Gutierrez Del Arroyo, Ana; Sciuso, Alberto; Jenkins, Nicholas; Dyson, Alex; Struthers, Richard; Sneyd, Robert; Minto, Gary; Singer, Mervyn; Shah, Ajay M.; Gourine, Alexander V.

    2016-01-01

    Objectives: Molecular mechanisms linking autonomic dysfunction with poorer clinical outcomes in critical illness remain unclear. We hypothesized that baroreflex dysfunction alone is sufficient to cause cardiac impairment through neurohormonal activation of (NADPH oxidase-dependent) oxidative stress resulting in increased expression of G-protein coupled receptor kinase (GRK)-2, a key negative regulator of cardiac function. Design: Laboratory/clinical investigations. Setting: University laboratory/medical centers. Subjects: Adult rats; wild-type/NAPDH oxidase subunit-2 (NOX-2) deficient mice; elective surgical patients. Interventions: Cardiac performance was assessed by transthoracic echocardiography following experimental baroreflex dysfunction (BD, sino-aortic denervation) in rats and mice. Immunoblots assessed GPCR recycling proteins expression in rodent cardiomyocytes and patient mononuclear leukocytes. In surgical patients, heart rate recovery after cardio-pulmonary exercise testing, time/frequency measures of parasympathetic parameters were related to the presence/absence of BD (defined by spontaneous baroreflex sensitivity of <6ms.mmHg-1). The associations of BD with intraoperative cardiac function and outcomes were assessed. Measurements and Main Results: Experimental BD in rats and mice resulted in impaired cardiac contractility and upregulation of GRK-2 expression. In mice, genetic deficiency of gp91 NADPH-oxidase (NOX-2) subunit prevented upregulation of GRK-2 expression in conditions of BD and preserved cardiac function. BD was present in 81/249 (32.5%) patients, and was characterized by lower parasympathetic tone and increased GRK-2 expression in mononuclear leukocytes. BD in patients was also associated with impaired intraoperative cardiac contractility. Critical illness and mortality were more frequent in surgical patients with BD (relative risk: 1.66 [95%CI:1.16-2.39]; p=0.006). Conclusions: Reduced baroreflex sensitivity is associated with NOX-2

  5. Contractile properties of muscle fibers from the deep and superficial digital flexors of horses.

    PubMed

    Butcher, M T; Chase, P B; Hermanson, J W; Clark, A N; Brunet, N M; Bertram, J E A

    2010-10-01

    Equine digital flexor muscles have independent tendons but a nearly identical mechanical relationship to the main joint they act upon. Yet these muscles have remarkable diversity in architecture, ranging from long, unipennate fibers ("short" compartment of DDF) to very short, multipennate fibers (SDF). To investigate the functional relevance of the form of the digital flexor muscles, fiber contractile properties were analyzed in the context of architecture differences and in vivo function during locomotion. Myosin heavy chain (MHC) isoform fiber type was studied, and in vitro motility assays were used to measure actin filament sliding velocity (V(f)). Skinned fiber contractile properties [isometric tension (P(0)/CSA), velocity of unloaded shortening (V(US)), and force-Ca(2+) relationships] at both 10 and 30°C were characterized. Contractile properties were correlated with MHC isoform and their respective V(f). The DDF contained a higher percentage of MHC-2A fibers with myosin (heavy meromyosin) and V(f) that was twofold faster than SDF. At 30°C, P(0)/CSA was higher for DDF (103.5 ± 8.75 mN/mm(2)) than SDF fibers (81.8 ± 7.71 mN/mm(2)). Similarly, V(US) (pCa 5, 30°C) was faster for DDF (2.43 ± 0.53 FL/s) than SDF fibers (1.20 ± 0.22 FL/s). Active isometric tension increased with increasing Ca(2+) concentration, with maximal Ca(2+) activation at pCa 5 at each temperature in fibers from each muscle. In general, the collective properties of DDF and SDF were consistent with fiber MHC isoform composition, muscle architecture, and the respective functional roles of the two muscles in locomotion.

  6. Functioning in the Real World: Using Storytelling to Improve Validity in the Assessment of Executive Functions.

    PubMed

    Annotti, Lee A; Teglasi, Hedwig

    2016-08-02

    Real-world contexts differ in the clarity of expectations for desired responses, as do assessment procedures, ranging along a continuum from maximal conditions that provide well-defined expectations to typical conditions that provide ill-defined expectations. Executive functions guide effective social interactions, but relations between them have not been studied with measures that are matched in the clarity of response expectations. In predicting teacher-rated social competence (SC) from kindergarteners' performance on tasks of executive functions (EFs), we found better model-data fit indexes when both measures were similar in the clarity of response expectations for the child. The maximal EF measure, the Developmental Neuropsychological Assessment, presents well-defined response expectations, and the typical EF measure, 5 scales from the Thematic Apperception Test (TAT), presents ill-defined response expectations (i.e., Abstraction, Perceptual Integration, Cognitive-Experiential Integration, and Associative Thinking). To assess SC under maximal and typical conditions, we used 2 teacher-rated questionnaires, with items, respectively, that emphasize well-defined and ill-defined expectations: the Behavior Rating Inventory: Behavioral Regulation Index and the Social Skills Improvement System: Social Competence Scale. Findings suggest that matching clarity of expectations improves generalization across measures and highlight the usefulness of the TAT to measure EF.

  7. Physical capacity and functional abilities improve in young adults with intellectual disabilities after functional training.

    PubMed

    Barwick, Ryan B; Tillman, Mark D; Stopka, Christine B; Dipnarine, Krishna; Delisle, Anthony; Sayedul Huq, Mona

    2012-06-01

    Individuals with an intellectual disability (ID) have higher rates of obesity, lower rates of physical activity, cardiorespiratory fitness, and muscular endurance than do typically developed individuals (TDI) and are twice as likely to develop chronic disease, living half as long as TDIs do. The purpose of this study was to examine the improvements in physical capacity and functional ability in Special Olympic Athletes (SOAs) aged 19-22 years after participating in a functional training (FT) program and compare these scores with those of the SOAs in a resistance weight training (WT) program. Twenty SOAs (13 men, 7 women with mild to moderate ID) participated in a 1-hour FT program, twice a week, for 10 weeks, compared with 22 same-aged SOAs (14 men, 8 women) participating in a 1-hour WT program (2× week for 8 weeks). Prefitness and postfitness tests consisting of heart rate (HR) for the 3-minute step test, static plank, body weight squats, static bar hang, and knee push-ups were conducted. Two-tailed, paired sample t-tests (p < 0.05) were used to evaluate the differences in the FT group. Change scores were used to compare FTG with the WT group. The HR decreased by 31.8 b·min⁻¹ pre-post in the FTG (p < 0.001). Static plank duration improved by 22.4 seconds in the FTG (p = 0.016); static plank change scores improved (p = 0.037) for the FTG (26.5 ± 32.1 seconds compared with that for the WT group (4.6 ± 22 seconds). Height and weight values were unchanged in both the groups. The results of this study demonstrate the value of FT programs for this population, because weight equipment is not always available in many settings.

  8. Clinical Relationship between Steatocholecystitis and Gallbladder Contractility Measured by Cholescintigraphy

    PubMed Central

    Bang, Chang Seok; Lee, Yong Sub; Yoon, Jai Hoon; Kim, Youn Jeong; Kim, Jin Bong; Kim, Dong Joon

    2015-01-01

    Objective. Contractility of gallbladder is known to be decreased in fatty gallbladder diseases. However, clinical estimation data about this relationship is still lacking. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between steatocholecystitis and contractility of gallbladder. Methods. Patients with cholecystitis (steatocholecystitis versus nonsteatocholecystitis) who underwent cholescintigraphy before cholecystectomy were retrospectively evaluated in a single teaching hospital of Korea. The association of steatocholecystitis with contractility of gallbladder, measured by preoperative cholescintigraphy, was assessed by univariable and multivariable analysis. Results. A total of 432 patients were finally enrolled (steatocholecystitis versus nonsteatocholecystitis; 75 versus 357, calculous versus acalculous cholecystitis; 316 versus 116). In the multivariable analysis, age (OR: 0.94, 95% CI: 0.90–0.99, P = 0.01) and total serum cholesterol (OR: 1.02, 95% CI: 1.01–1.04, P = 0.04) were related to steatocholecystitis in patients with acalculous cholecystitis. Only age (OR: 0.97, 95% CI: 0.94–0.99, P = 0.004) was significantly related to steatocholecystitis in patients with calculous cholecystitis. However, ejection fraction of gallbladder reflecting contractility measured by cholescintigraphy was not related to steatocholecystitis irrespective of presence of gallbladder stone in patients with cholecystitis. Conclusion. Ejection fraction of gallbladder measured by cholescintigraphy cannot be used for the detection or confirmation of steatocholecystitis. PMID:25705222

  9. Clinical Relationship between Steatocholecystitis and Gallbladder Contractility Measured by Cholescintigraphy.

    PubMed

    Bang, Chang Seok; Lee, Yong Sub; Yoon, Jai Hoon; Kim, Youn Jeong; Kim, Jin Bong; Kim, Dong Joon

    2015-01-01

    Objective. Contractility of gallbladder is known to be decreased in fatty gallbladder diseases. However, clinical estimation data about this relationship is still lacking. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between steatocholecystitis and contractility of gallbladder. Methods. Patients with cholecystitis (steatocholecystitis versus nonsteatocholecystitis) who underwent cholescintigraphy before cholecystectomy were retrospectively evaluated in a single teaching hospital of Korea. The association of steatocholecystitis with contractility of gallbladder, measured by preoperative cholescintigraphy, was assessed by univariable and multivariable analysis. Results. A total of 432 patients were finally enrolled (steatocholecystitis versus nonsteatocholecystitis; 75 versus 357, calculous versus acalculous cholecystitis; 316 versus 116). In the multivariable analysis, age (OR: 0.94, 95% CI: 0.90-0.99, P = 0.01) and total serum cholesterol (OR: 1.02, 95% CI: 1.01-1.04, P = 0.04) were related to steatocholecystitis in patients with acalculous cholecystitis. Only age (OR: 0.97, 95% CI: 0.94-0.99, P = 0.004) was significantly related to steatocholecystitis in patients with calculous cholecystitis. However, ejection fraction of gallbladder reflecting contractility measured by cholescintigraphy was not related to steatocholecystitis irrespective of presence of gallbladder stone in patients with cholecystitis. Conclusion. Ejection fraction of gallbladder measured by cholescintigraphy cannot be used for the detection or confirmation of steatocholecystitis.

  10. Improving Sensorimotor Function and Adaptation using Stochastic Vestibular Stimulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Galvan, R. C.; Bloomberg, J. J.; Mulavara, A. P.; Clark, T. K.; Merfeld, D. M.; Oman, C. M.

    2014-01-01

    Astronauts experience sensorimotor changes during adaption to G-transitions that occur when entering and exiting microgravity. Post space flight, these sensorimotor disturbances can include postural and gait instability, visual performance changes, manual control disruptions, spatial disorientation, and motion sickness, all of which can hinder the operational capabilities of the astronauts. Crewmember safety would be significantly increased if sensorimotor changes brought on by gravitational changes could be mitigated and adaptation could be facilitated. The goal of this research is to investigate and develop the use of electrical stochastic vestibular stimulation (SVS) as a countermeasure to augment sensorimotor function and facilitate adaptation. For this project, SVS will be applied via electrodes on the mastoid processes at imperceptible amplitude levels. We hypothesize that SVS will improve sensorimotor performance through the phenomena of stochastic resonance, which occurs when the response of a nonlinear system to a weak input signal is optimized by the application of a particular nonzero level of noise. In line with the theory of stochastic resonance, a specific optimal level of SVS will be found and tested for each subject [1]. Three experiments are planned to investigate the use of SVS in sensory-dependent tasks and performance. The first experiment will aim to demonstrate stochastic resonance in the vestibular system through perception based motion recognition thresholds obtained using a 6-degree of freedom Stewart platform in the Jenks Vestibular Laboratory at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. A range of SVS amplitudes will be applied to each subject and the subjectspecific optimal SVS level will be identified as that which results in the lowest motion recognition threshold, through previously established, well developed methods [2,3,4]. The second experiment will investigate the use of optimal SVS in facilitating sensorimotor adaptation to system

  11. Impairment of insulin-stimulated Akt/GLUT4 signaling is associated with cardiac contractile dysfunction and aggravates I/R injury in STZ-diabetic Rats

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Jiung-Pang; Huang, Shiang-Suo; Deng, Jen-Ying; Hung, Li-Man

    2009-01-01

    In this study, we established systemic in-vivo evidence from molecular to organism level to explain how diabetes can aggravate myocardial ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury and revealed the role of insulin signaling (with specific focus on Akt/GLUT4 signaling molecules). The myocardial I/R injury was induced by the left main coronary artery occlusion for 1 hr and then 3 hr reperfusion in control, streptozotocin (STZ)-induced insulinopenic diabetes, and insulin-treated diabetic rats. The diabetic rats showed a significant decrease in heart rate, and a prolonged isovolumic relaxation (tau) which lead to decrease in cardiac output (CO) without changing total peripheral resistance (TPR). The phosphorylated Akt and glucose transporter 4 (GLUT 4) protein levels were dramatically reduced in both I/R and non-I/R diabetic rat hearts. Insulin treatment in diabetes showed improvement of contractile function as well as partially increased Akt phosphorylation and GLUT 4 protein levels. In the animals subjected to I/R, the mortality rates were 25%, 65%, and 33% in the control, diabetic, and insulin-treated diabetic group respectively. The I/R-induced arrhythmias and myocardial infarction did not differ significantly between the control and the diabetic groups. Consistent with its anti-hyperglycemic effects, insulin significantly reduced I/R-induced arrhythmias but had no effect on I/R-induced infarctions. Diabetic rat with I/R exhibited the worse hemodynamic outcome, which included systolic and diastolic dysfunctions. Insulin treatment only partially improved diastolic functions and elevated P-Akt and GLUT 4 protein levels. Our results indicate that cardiac contractile dysfunction caused by a defect in insulin-stimulated Akt/GLUT4 may be a major reason for the high mortality rate in I/R injured diabetic rats. PMID:19706162

  12. Clinical Practice Guideline: Improving Nasal Form and Function after Rhinoplasty.

    PubMed

    Ishii, Lisa E; Tollefson, Travis T; Basura, Gregory J; Rosenfeld, Richard M; Abramson, Peter J; Chaiet, Scott R; Davis, Kara S; Doghramji, Karl; Farrior, Edward H; Finestone, Sandra A; Ishman, Stacey L; Murphy, Robert X; Park, John G; Setzen, Michael; Strike, Deborah J; Walsh, Sandra A; Warner, Jeremy P; Nnacheta, Lorraine C

    2017-02-01

    variations, and clinical concerns associated with this surgical procedure; it is not intended to be a comprehensive reference for improving nasal form and function after rhinoplasty. Recommendations in this guideline concerning education and counseling to the patient are also intended to include the caregiver if the patient is <18 years of age. Action Statements The Guideline Development Group made the following recommendations: (1) Clinicians should ask all patients seeking rhinoplasty about their motivations for surgery and their expectations for outcomes, should provide feedback on whether those expectations are a realistic goal of surgery, and should document this discussion in the medical record. (2) Clinicians should assess rhinoplasty candidates for comorbid conditions that could modify or contraindicate surgery, including obstructive sleep apnea, body dysmorphic disorder, bleeding disorders, or chronic use of topical vasoconstrictive intranasal drugs. (3) The surgeon, or the surgeon's designee, should evaluate the rhinoplasty candidate for nasal airway obstruction during the preoperative assessment. (4) The surgeon, or the surgeon's designee, should educate rhinoplasty candidates regarding what to expect after surgery, how surgery might affect the ability to breathe through the nose, potential complications of surgery, and the possible need for future nasal surgery. (5) The clinician, or the clinician's designee, should counsel rhinoplasty candidates with documented obstructive sleep apnea about the impact of surgery on nasal airway obstruction and how obstructive sleep apnea might affect perioperative management. (6) The surgeon, or the surgeon's designee, should educate rhinoplasty patients before surgery about strategies to manage discomfort after surgery. (7) Clinicians should document patients' satisfaction with their nasal appearance and with their nasal function at a minimum of 12 months after rhinoplasty. The Guideline Development Group made recommendations

  13. Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Conductance Regulator in Sarcoplasmic Reticulum of Airway Smooth Muscle. Implications for Airway Contractility

    PubMed Central

    Cook, Daniel P.; Rector, Michael V.; Bouzek, Drake C.; Michalski, Andrew S.; Gansemer, Nicholas D.; Reznikov, Leah R.; Li, Xiaopeng; Stroik, Mallory R.; Ostedgaard, Lynda S.; Abou Alaiwa, Mahmoud H.; Thompson, Michael A.; Prakash, Y. S.; Krishnan, Ramaswamy; Meyerholz, David K.; Seow, Chun Y.

    2016-01-01

    Rationale: An asthma-like airway phenotype has been described in people with cystic fibrosis (CF). Whether these findings are directly caused by loss of CF transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) function or secondary to chronic airway infection and/or inflammation has been difficult to determine. Objectives: Airway contractility is primarily determined by airway smooth muscle. We tested the hypothesis that CFTR is expressed in airway smooth muscle and directly affects airway smooth muscle contractility. Methods: Newborn pigs, both wild type and with CF (before the onset of airway infection and inflammation), were used in this study. High-resolution immunofluorescence was used to identify the subcellular localization of CFTR in airway smooth muscle. Airway smooth muscle function was determined with tissue myography, intracellular calcium measurements, and regulatory myosin light chain phosphorylation status. Precision-cut lung slices were used to investigate the therapeutic potential of CFTR modulation on airway reactivity. Measurements and Main Results: We found that CFTR localizes to the sarcoplasmic reticulum compartment of airway smooth muscle and regulates airway smooth muscle tone. Loss of CFTR function led to delayed calcium reuptake following cholinergic stimulation and increased myosin light chain phosphorylation. CFTR potentiation with ivacaftor decreased airway reactivity in precision-cut lung slices following cholinergic stimulation. Conclusions: Loss of CFTR alters porcine airway smooth muscle function and may contribute to the airflow obstruction phenotype observed in human CF. Airway smooth muscle CFTR may represent a therapeutic target in CF and other diseases of airway narrowing. PMID:26488271

  14. The demonstration of alternating contractile state in pulsus alternans

    PubMed Central

    Noble, R. Joe; Nutter, Donald O.

    1970-01-01

    Pulsus alternans was induced in 11 anesthetized, open-chest dogs by rapid atrial pacing, and the left ventricular filling characteristics and length-tension-velocity relationship of alternating beats were compared. The end-diastolic circumferences (cire) of the strong beats were slightly, but significantly, increased over the weak beats (7.3 > 6.9 cm, P < 0.01), confirming that diastolic filling does alternate in pulsus alternans. This alternation in initial fiber length seemed to result from an alternation in the prior end-systolic length, rather than from an alternation in diastolic filling time or compliance. There was also no difference in end-diastolic tension as measured by an isometric strain gauge suggesting no difference in contractile element relaxation before weak and strong beats. The contractile state of the strong beats was consistently greater than that of the weak beats when contractility was defined in terms of: (a) Vmax (3.13 > 2.53 circ/sec, P < 0.01); and (b) the velocity of circumferential fiber shortening (0.84 > 0.39 circ/sec, P < 0.001) and developed tension (82.5 > 74 g/cm, P < 0.01) at isolength. The length-tension-velocity relationship of the left ventricle also varied between strong and weak beats when: (a) the maximum velocity of contractile element shortening at least common tension (1.68 > 1.28 circ/sec, P < 0.05); and (b) the velocity of circumferential fiber shortening (0.81 > 0.39 circ/sec, P < 0.001) at maximum developed tension were examined. Analysis of the length-tension-velocity characteristics of sequential beats at the onset of alternans in three dogs suggests that an alternation in contractility initiates alternans, with secondary alternations in ventricular filling. Cross-clamping of the aorta in three other dogs essentially eliminated the alternating changes in end-diastolic length and pressure, while the resultant isovolumic contractions continued to demonstrate clear evidence of pulsus alternans in the ventricular

  15. Rottlerin increases cardiac contractile performance and coronary perfusion through BKCa++ channel activation following cold cardioplegic arrest in isolated hearts

    PubMed Central

    Clements, Richard T; Cordeiro, Brenda; Feng, Jun; Bianchi, Cesario; Sellke, Frank W.

    2011-01-01

    Background Cardioplegia and cardiopulmonary bypass(CP/CPB) subjects myocardium to complex injurious stimuli that can result in cardiomyocyte and vascular contractile abnormalities. Rottlerin, originally identified as a PKCδ inhibitor has a number of known additional effects that may be beneficial in the setting of CP/CPB. We tested the hypothesis that rottlerin would mitigate deleterious effects associated with CP/CPB. Methods and Results Langendorff-perfused isolated rat hearts were subjected to 2 hours intermittent cold (10 deg C) cardioplegia (St Thomas II) followed by 30 min normothermic reperfusion. Cardioplegia was delivered every 30 min, for 1 min. Hearts were treated with (CP+R, n=7) or without (CP, n=9) the PKCδ inhibitor, rottlerin (1μM) and/or the BKCa++ channel inhibitor Paxilline (100 nM) supplied in the cardioplegia. Hearts constantly perfused with Krebs-Heinslet buffer served as controls (n=6). Baseline parameters of cardiac function were similar between groups. CP resulted in reduced cardiac function (LVDP:39±3.8%,±dP/dt: 32±4.4%,-41±5.1% decrease compared to baseline). Treatment with 1uM Rottlerin significantly improved CP-induced cardiac function (LVDP: 20±5.9%, ±dP/dt: 5.2 ±4.5%, -11.6 ± 4.7% decrease versus baseline, (p < .05 CP+R vs CP)). Rottlerin also caused a significant increase in coronary flow post reperfusion (CP 34±4.2% decrease from baseline, vs CP+R 26±9.6% increase over baseline, p=.01). Independent of vascular effects, CP significantly decreased isolated myocyte contraction which was restored by rottlerin treatment. The BKCa++ channel inhibitor greatly reduced the majority of beneficial effects associated with Rottlerin. Conclusions Rottlerin significantly improves cardiac performance following cardioplegic arrest via improved cardiomyocyte contraction and coronary perfusion. PMID:21911819

  16. Testosterone regulates smooth muscle contractile pathways in the rat prostate: emphasis on PDE5 signaling

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Xinhua; Zang, Ning; Wei, Yu; Yin, Jin; Teng, Ruobing; Seftel, Allen

    2012-01-01

    Testosterone (T) plays a permissive role in the development of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), and phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitors (PDE5is) have been found to be effective for BPH and lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) in clinical trials. This study investigated the effect of T on smooth muscle (SM) contractile and regulatory signaling pathways, including PDE5 expression and functional activity in prostate in male rats (sham-operated, surgically castrated, and castrated with T supplementation). In vitro organ bath studies, real-time RT-PCR, Western blot analysis, and immunohistochemistry were performed. Castration heavily attenuated contractility, including sensitivity to phenylephrine with SM myosin immunostaining revealing a disrupted SM cell arrangement in the stroma. PDE5 was immunolocalized exclusively in the prostate stroma, and orchiectomy signficantly reduced PDE5 immunopositivity, mRNA, and protein expression, along with nNOS and ROKβ mRNA, whereas it increased eNOS plus α1a and α1b adrenoreceptor expression in castrated animals. The PDE5i zaprinast significantly increased prostate strip relaxation to the nitric oxide donor sodium nitroprusside (SNP) in control but not castrated rats. But SNP alone was more effective on castrated rats, comparable with sham treated with SNP plus zaprinast. T supplementation prevented or restored all above changes, including SNP and zaprinast in vitro responsiveness. In conclusion, our data show that T positively regulates PDE5 expression and functional activities in prostate, and T ablation not only suppresses prostate size but also reduces prostatic SM contractility, with several potential SM contraction/relaxation pathways implicated. Zaprinast findings strongly suggest a major role for PDE5/cGMP in this signaling cascade. PDE5 inhibition may represent a novel mechanism for treatment of BPH. PMID:22028410

  17. Assessment of Muscle Contractile Properties at Acute Moderate Altitude Through Tensiomyography.

    PubMed

    Morales-Artacho, Antonio J; Padial, Paulino; Rodríguez-Matoso, Dario; Rodríguez-Ruiz, David; García-Ramos, Amador; García-Manso, Juan Manuel; Calderón, Carmen; Feriche, Belén

    2015-12-01

    Under hypoxia, alterations in muscle contractile properties and faster fatigue development have been reported. This study investigated the efficacy of tensiomyography (TMG) in assessing muscle contractile function at acute moderate altitude. Biceps femoris (BF) and vastus lateralis (VL) muscles of 18 athletes (age 20.1 ± 6.1 years; body mass 65.4 ± 13.9 kg; height 174.6 ± 9.5 cm) were assessed at sea level and moderate altitude using electrically evoked contractions on two consecutive days. Maximum radial displacement (Dm), time of contraction (Tc), reaction time (Td), sustained contraction time (Ts), and relaxation time (Tr) were recorded at 40, 60, 80, and 100 mA. At altitude, VL showed lower Dm values at 40 mA (p = 0.008; ES = -0.237). Biceps femoris showed Dm decrements in all electrical stimulations (p < 0.001, ES > 0.61). In VL, Tc was longer at altitude at 40 (p = 0.031, ES = 0.56), and 100 mA (p = 0.03, ES = 0.51). Regarding Td, VL showed significant increases in all electrical intensities under hypoxia (p ≤ 0.03, ES ≥ 0.33). TMG appears effective at detecting slight changes in the muscle contractile properties at moderate altitude. Further research involving TMG along with other muscle function assessment methods is needed to provide additional insight into peripheral neuromuscular alterations at moderate altitude.

  18. A Diet Rich in Medium-Chain Fatty Acids Improves Systolic Function and Alters the Lipidomic Profile in Patients With Type 2 Diabetes: A Pilot Study

    PubMed Central

    Airhart, Sophia; Cade, W. Todd; Jiang, Hui; Coggan, Andrew R.; Racette, Susan B.; Korenblat, Kevin; Spearie, Catherine Anderson; Waller, Suzanne; O'Connor, Robert; Bashir, Adil; Ory, Daniel S.; Schaffer, Jean E.; Novak, Eric; Farmer, Marsha; Waggoner, Alan D.; Dávila-Román, Víctor G.; Javidan-Nejad, Cylen

    2016-01-01

    Context: Excessive cardiac long-chain fatty acid (LCFA) metabolism/storage causes cardiomyopathy in animal models of type 2 diabetes. Medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) are absorbed and oxidized efficiently. Data in animal models of diabetes suggest MCFAs may benefit the heart. Objective: Our objective was to test the effects of an MCFA-rich diet vs an LCFA-rich diet on plasma lipids, cardiac steatosis, and function in patients with type 2 diabetes. Design: This was a double-blind, randomized, 2-week matched-feeding study. Setting: The study included ambulatory patients in the general community. Patients: Sixteen patients, ages 37–65 years, with type 2 diabetes, an ejection fraction greater than 45%, and no other systemic disease were included. Intervention: Fourteen days of a diet rich in MCFAs or LCFAs, containing 38% as fat in total, was undertaken. Main Outcome Measures: Cardiac steatosis and function were the main outcome measures, with lipidomic changes considered a secondary outcome. Results: The relatively load-independent measure of cardiac contractility, S′, improved in the MCFA group (P < .05). Weight-adjusted stroke volume and cardiac output decreased in the LCFA group (both P < .05). The MCFA, but not the LCFA, diet decreased several plasma sphingolipids, ceramide, and acylcarnitines implicated in diabetic cardiomyopathy, and changes in several sphingolipids correlated with improved fasting insulins. Conclusions: Although a diet high in MCFAs does not change cardiac steatosis, our findings suggest that the MCFA-rich diet alters the plasma lipidome and may benefit or at least not harm cardiac function and fasting insulin levels in humans with type 2 diabetes. Larger, long-term studies are needed to further evaluate these effects in less-controlled settings. PMID:26652763

  19. In a non-human primate model, aging disrupts the neural control of intestinal smooth muscle contractility in a region-specific manner

    PubMed Central

    Tran, L; Greenwood-Van Meerveld, B

    2014-01-01

    Background Incidences of gastrointestinal (GI) motility disorders increase with age. However, there is a paucity of knowledge about the aging mechanisms leading to GI dysmotility. Motility in the GI tract is a function of smooth muscle contractility, which is modulated in part by the enteric nervous system (ENS). Evidence suggests that aging impairs the ENS, thus we tested the hypothesis that senescence in the GI tract precipitates abnormalities in smooth muscle and neurally mediated contractility in a region-specific manner. Methods Jejunal and colonic circular muscle strips were isolated from young (4–10 years) and old (18+ years) baboons. Myogenic responses were investigated using potassium chloride (KCl) and carbachol (CCh). Neurally mediated contractile responses were evoked by electrical field stimulation (EFS) and were recorded in the absence and presence of atropine (1 μM) or NG-Nitro-l-arginine methyl ester (l-NAME; 100 μM). Key Results The myogenic responses to KCl in the jejunum and colon were unaffected by age. In the colon, but not the jejunum, CCh-induced contractile responses were reduced in aged animals. Compared to young baboons, there was enhanced EFS-induced contractility of old baboon jejunal smooth muscle in contrast to the reduced contractility in the colon. The effect of atropine on the EFS response was lower in aged colonic tissue, suggesting reduced participation of acetylcholine. In aged jejunal tissue, higher contractile responses to EFS were found to be due to reduced nitregic inhibition. Conclusions & Inferences These findings provide key evidence for the importance of intestinal smooth muscle and ENS senescence in age-associated GI motility disorders. PMID:24548258

  20. Cardiac-specific elevations in thyroid hormone enhance contractility and prevent pressure overload-induced cardiac dysfunction

    PubMed Central

    Trivieri, Maria Giovanna; Oudit, Gavin Y.; Sah, Rajan; Kerfant, Benoit-Gilles; Sun, Hui; Gramolini, Anthony O.; Pan, Yan; Wickenden, Alan D.; Croteau, Walburga; Morreale de Escobar, Gabriella; Pekhletski, Roman; St. Germain, Donald; MacLennan, David H.; Backx, Peter H.

    2006-01-01

    Thyroid hormone (TH) is critical for cardiac development and heart function. In heart disease, TH metabolism is abnormal, and many biochemical and functional alterations mirror hypothyroidism. Although TH therapy has been advocated for treating heart disease, a clear benefit of TH has yet to be established, possibly because of peripheral actions of TH. To assess the potential efficacy of TH in treating heart disease, type 2 deiodinase (D2), which converts the prohormone thyroxine to active triiodothyronine (T3), was expressed transiently in mouse hearts by using the tetracycline transactivator system. Increased cardiac D2 activity led to elevated cardiac T3 levels and to enhanced myocardial contractility, accompanied by increased Ca2+ transients and sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca2+ uptake. These phenotypic changes were associated with up-regulation of sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum calcium ATPase (SERCA) 2a expression as well as decreased Na+/Ca2+ exchanger, β-myosin heavy chain, and sarcolipin (SLN) expression. In pressure overload, targeted increases in D2 activity could not block hypertrophy but could completely prevent impaired contractility and SR Ca2+ cycling as well as altered expression patterns of SERCA2a, SLN, and other markers of pathological hypertrophy. Our results establish that elevated D2 activity in the heart increases T3 levels and enhances cardiac contractile function while preventing deterioration of cardiac function and altered gene expression after pressure overload. PMID:16595628

  1. Integrated Analysis of Contractile Kinetics, Force Generation, and Electrical Activity in Single Human Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes.

    PubMed

    Kijlstra, Jan David; Hu, Dongjian; Mittal, Nikhil; Kausel, Eduardo; van der Meer, Peter; Garakani, Arman; Domian, Ibrahim J

    2015-12-08

    The quantitative analysis of cardiomyocyte function is essential for stem cell-based approaches for the in vitro study of human cardiac physiology and pathophysiology. We present a method to comprehensively assess the function of single human pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocyte (hPSC-CMs) through simultaneous quantitative analysis of contraction kinetics, force generation, and electrical activity. We demonstrate that statistical analysis of movies of contracting hPSC-CMs can be used to quantify changes in cellular morphology over time and compute contractile kinetics. Using a biomechanical model that incorporates substrate stiffness, we calculate cardiomyocyte force generation at single-cell resolution and validate this approach with conventional traction force microscopy. The addition of fluorescent calcium indicators or membrane potential dyes allows the simultaneous analysis of contractility and calcium handling or action potential morphology. Accordingly, our approach has the potential for broad application in the study of cardiac disease, drug discovery, and cardiotoxicity screening.

  2. Integrated Analysis of Contractile Kinetics, Force Generation, and Electrical Activity in Single Human Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes

    PubMed Central

    Kijlstra, Jan David; Hu, Dongjian; Mittal, Nikhil; Kausel, Eduardo; van der Meer, Peter; Garakani, Arman; Domian, Ibrahim J.

    2015-01-01

    Summary The quantitative analysis of cardiomyocyte function is essential for stem cell-based approaches for the in vitro study of human cardiac physiology and pathophysiology. We present a method to comprehensively assess the function of single human pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocyte (hPSC-CMs) through simultaneous quantitative analysis of contraction kinetics, force generation, and electrical activity. We demonstrate that statistical analysis of movies of contracting hPSC-CMs can be used to quantify changes in cellular morphology over time and compute contractile kinetics. Using a biomechanical model that incorporates substrate stiffness, we calculate cardiomyocyte force generation at single-cell resolution and validate this approach with conventional traction force microscopy. The addition of fluorescent calcium indicators or membrane potential dyes allows the simultaneous analysis of contractility and calcium handling or action potential morphology. Accordingly, our approach has the potential for broad application in the study of cardiac disease, drug discovery, and cardiotoxicity screening. PMID:26626178

  3. Contractility sensor-guided optimization of cardiac resynchronization therapy: results from the RESPOND-CRT trial

    PubMed Central

    Delnoy, Peter Paul; Brachmann, Johannes; Reynolds, Dwight; Padeletti, Luigi; Noelker, Georg; Kantipudi, Charan; Rubin Lopez, José Manuel; Dichtl, Wolfgang; Borri-Brunetto, Alberto; Verhees, Luc; Ritter, Philippe; Singh, Jagmeet P.

    2017-01-01

    Aims Although cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) is effective in patients with systolic heart failure (HF) and a wide QRS interval, a substantial proportion of patients remain non-responsive. The SonR contractility sensor embedded in the right atrial lead enables individualized automatic optimization of the atrioventricular (AV) and interventricular (VV) timings. The RESPOND-CRT study investigated the safety and efficacy of the contractility sensor system in HF patients undergoing CRT. Methods and results RESPOND-CRT was a prospective, randomized, double-blinded, multicentre, non-inferiority trial. Patients were randomized (2:1, respectively) to receive weekly, automatic CRT optimization with SonR vs. an Echo-guided optimization of AV and VV timings. The primary efficacy endpoint was the rate of clinical responders (patients alive, without adjudicated HF-related events, with improvement in New York Heart Association class or quality of life), at 12 months. The study randomized 998 patients. Responder rates were 75.0% in the SonR arm and 70.4% in the Echo arm (mean difference, 4.6%; 95% CI, −1.4% to 10.6%; P < 0.001 for non-inferiority margin −10.0%) (Table 2). At an overall mean follow-up of 548 ± 190 days SonR was associated with a 35% risk reduction in HF hospitalization (hazard ratio, 0.65; 95% CI, 0.46–0.92; log-rank P = 0.01). Conclusion Automatic AV and VV optimization using the contractility sensor was safe and as effective as Echo-guided AV and VV optimization in increasing response to CRT. ClinicalTrials.gov number NCT01534234 PMID:27941020

  4. Motor function improvement following intrathecal baclofen pump placement in a patient with locked-in syndrome.

    PubMed

    Cairns, Kevin; Stein, Joel

    2002-04-01

    We describe a patient with locked-in syndrome who had minimal volitional motor function and severe spasticity in all four extremities. The patient showed a significant improvement in volitional motor function following intrathecal baclofen pump therapy to control spasticity. This case study suggests that intrathecal baclofen pump therapy might improve motor function in select patients with locked-in syndrome.

  5. Neurofeedback Improves Executive Functioning in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kouijzer, Mirjam E. J.; de Moor, Jan M. H.; Gerrits, Berrie J. L.; Congedo, Marco; van Schie, Hein T.

    2009-01-01

    Seven autistic children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) received a neurofeedback treatment that aimed to improve their level of executive control. Neurofeedback successfully reduced children's heightened theta/beta ratio by inhibiting theta activation and enhancing beta activation over sessions. Following treatment, children's…

  6. Hypnotic Relaxation and Yoga to Improve Sleep and School Functioning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perfect, Michelle M.; Smith, Bradley

    2016-01-01

    Sleep insufficiency, defined as inadequate sleep duration, poor sleep quality, and daytime sleepiness, has been linked with students' learning and behavioral outcomes at school. However, there is limited research on interventions designed to improve the sleep of school-age children. In order to promote more interest on this critical topic, we…

  7. Food restriction induces in vivo ventricular dysfunction in spontaneously hypertensive rats without impairment of in vitro myocardial contractility.

    PubMed

    Okoshi, K; Fioretto, J R; Okoshi, M P; Cicogna, A C; Aragon, F F; Matsubara, L S; Matsubara, B B

    2004-04-01

    Cardiac structures, function, and myocardial contractility are affected by food restriction (FR). There are few experiments associating undernutrition with hypertension. The aim of the present study was to analyze the effects of FR on the cardiac response to hypertension in a genetic model of hypertension, the spontaneously hypertensive rat (SHR). Five-month-old SHR were fed a control or a calorie-restricted diet for 90 days. Global left ventricle (LV) systolic function was evaluated in vivo by transthoracic echocardiogram and myocardial contractility and diastolic function were assessed in vitro in an isovolumetrically beating isolated heart (Langendorff preparation). FR reduced LV systolic function (control (mean +/- SD): 58.9 +/- 8.2; FR: 50.8 +/- 4.8%, N = 14, P < 0.05). Myocardial contractility was preserved when assessed by the +dP/dt (control: 3493 +/- 379; FR: 3555 +/- 211 mmHg/s, P > 0.05), and developed pressure (in vitro) at diastolic pressure of zero (control: 152 +/- 16; FR: 149 +/- 15 mmHg, N = 9, P > 0.05) and 25 mmHg (control: 155 +/- 9; FR: 150 +/- 10 mmHg, N = 9, P > 0.05). FR also induced eccentric ventricular remodeling, and reduced myocardial elasticity (control: 10.9 +/- 1.6; FR: 9.2 +/- 0.9%, N = 9, P < 0.05) and LV compliance (control: 82.6 +/- 16.5; FR: 68.2 +/- 9.1%, N = 9, P < 0.05). We conclude that FR causes systolic ventricular dysfunction without in vitro change in myocardial contractility and diastolic dysfunction probably due to a reduction in myocardial elasticity.

  8. Myocyte contractility can be maintained by storing cells with the myosin ATPase inhibitor 2,3 butanedione monoxime

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Charles S; Mechas, Charles; Campbell, Kenneth S

    2015-01-01

    Isolated intact myocytes can be used to investigate contractile mechanisms and to screen new therapeutic compounds. These experiments typically require euthanizing an animal and isolating fresh cells each day or analyzing cultured myocytes, which quickly lose their rod-shaped morphology. Recent data suggest that the viability of canine myocytes can be prolonged using low temperature and N-benzyl-p-toluene sulfonamide (an inhibitor of skeletal myosin ATPase). We performed similar studies in rat myocytes in order to test whether the cardiac myosin ATPase inhibitors 2,3-Butanedione monoxime (BDM) and blebbistatin help to maintain cell-level function over multiple days. Myocytes were isolated from rats and separated into batches that were stored at 4°C in a HEPES-buffered solution that contained 0.5 mmol L−1 Ca2+ and (1) no myosin ATPase inhibitors; (2) 10 mmol L−1 BDM; or (3) 3 μmol L−1 blebbistatin. Functional viability of myocytes was assessed up to 3 days after the isolation by measuring calcium transients and unloaded shortening profiles induced by electrical stimuli in inhibitor-free Tyrode's solution. Cells stored without myosin ATPase inhibitors had altered morphology (fewer rod-shaped cells, shorter diastolic sarcomere lengths, and membrane blebbing) and were not viable for contractile assays after 24 h. Cells stored in BDM maintained morphology and contractile function for 48 h. Storage in blebbistatin maintained cell morphology for 72 h but inhibited contractility. These data show that storing cells with myosin ATPase inhibitors can extend the viability of myocytes that will be used for functional assays. This may help to refine and reduce the use of animals in experiments. PMID:26116551

  9. Bayesian Estimation of Conditional Independence Graphs Improves Functional Connectivity Estimates

    PubMed Central

    Hinne, Max; Janssen, Ronald J.; Heskes, Tom; van Gerven, Marcel A.J.

    2015-01-01

    Functional connectivity concerns the correlated activity between neuronal populations in spatially segregated regions of the brain, which may be studied using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). This coupled activity is conveniently expressed using covariance, but this measure fails to distinguish between direct and indirect effects. A popular alternative that addresses this issue is partial correlation, which regresses out the signal of potentially confounding variables, resulting in a measure that reveals only direct connections. Importantly, provided the data are normally distributed, if two variables are conditionally independent given all other variables, their respective partial correlation is zero. In this paper, we propose a probabilistic generative model that allows us to estimate functional connectivity in terms of both partial correlations and a graph representing conditional independencies. Simulation results show that this methodology is able to outperform the graphical LASSO, which is the de facto standard for estimating partial correlations. Furthermore, we apply the model to estimate functional connectivity for twenty subjects using resting-state fMRI data. Results show that our model provides a richer representation of functional connectivity as compared to considering partial correlations alone. Finally, we demonstrate how our approach can be extended in several ways, for instance to achieve data fusion by informing the conditional independence graph with data from probabilistic tractography. As our Bayesian formulation of functional connectivity provides access to the posterior distribution instead of only to point estimates, we are able to quantify the uncertainty associated with our results. This reveals that while we are able to infer a clear backbone of connectivity in our empirical results, the data are not accurately described by simply looking at the mode of the distribution over connectivity. The implication of this is that

  10. Ca+2/Calmodulin-Dependent Protein Kinase Mediates Glucose Toxicity-Induced Cardiomyocyte Contractile Dysfunction

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Rong-Huai; Guo, Haitao; Kandadi, Machender R.; Wang, Xiao-Ming; Ren, Jun

    2012-01-01

    (1) Hyperglycemia leads to cytotoxicity in the heart. Although several theories are postulated for glucose toxicity-induced cardiomyocyte dysfunction, the precise mechanism still remains unclear. (2) This study was designed to evaluate the impact of elevated extracellular Ca2+ on glucose toxicity-induced cardiac contractile and intracellular Ca2+ anomalies as well as the mechanism(s) involved with a focus on Ca2+/calmodulin (CaM)-dependent kinase. Isolated adult rat cardiomyocytes were maintained in normal (NG, 5.5 mM) or high glucose (HG, 25.5 mM) media for 6-12 hours. Contractile indices were measured including peak shortening (PS), maximal velocity of shortening/relengthening (±dL/dt), time-to-PS (TPS), and time-to-90% relengthening (TR90). (3) Cardiomyocytes maintained with HG displayed abnormal mechanical function including reduced PS, ±dL/dt, and prolonged TPS, TR90 and intracellular Ca2+ clearance. Expression of intracellular Ca2+ regulatory proteins including SERCA2a, phospholamban and Na+-Ca2+ exchanger were unaffected whereas SERCA activity was inhibited by HG. Interestingly, the HG-induced mechanical anomalies were abolished by elevated extracellular Ca2+ (from 1.0 to 2.7 mM). Interestingly, the high extracellular Ca2+-induced beneficial effect against HG was abolished by the CaM kinase inhibitor KN93. (4) These data suggest that elevated extracellular Ca2+ protects against glucose toxicity-induced cardiomyocyte contractile defects through a mechanism associated with CaM kinase. PMID:22745633

  11. High-Throughput Screening of Myometrial Calcium-Mobilization to Identify Modulators of Uterine Contractility

    PubMed Central

    Herington, Jennifer L.; Swale, Daniel R.; Brown, Naoko; Shelton, Elaine L.; Choi, Hyehun; Williams, Charles H.; Hong, Charles C.; Paria, Bibhash C.; Denton, Jerod S.; Reese, Jeff

    2015-01-01

    The uterine myometrium (UT-myo) is a therapeutic target for preterm labor, labor induction, and postpartum hemorrhage. Stimulation of intracellular Ca2+-release in UT-myo cells by oxytocin is a final pathway controlling myometrial contractions. The goal of this study was to develop a dual-addition assay for high-throughput screening of small molecular compounds, which could regulate Ca2+-mobilization in UT-myo cells, and hence, myometrial contractions. Primary murine UT-myo cells in 384-well plates were loaded with a Ca2+-sensitive fluorescent probe, and then screened for inducers of Ca2+-mobilization and inhibitors of oxytocin-induced Ca2+-mobilization. The assay exhibited robust screening statistics (Z´ = 0.73), DMSO-tolerance, and was validated for high-throughput screening against 2,727 small molecules from the Spectrum, NIH Clinical I and II collections of well-annotated compounds. The screen revealed a hit-rate of 1.80% for agonist and 1.39% for antagonist compounds. Concentration-dependent responses of hit-compounds demonstrated an EC50 less than 10μM for 21 hit-antagonist compounds, compared to only 7 hit-agonist compounds. Subsequent studies focused on hit-antagonist compounds. Based on the percent inhibition and functional annotation analyses, we selected 4 confirmed hit-antagonist compounds (benzbromarone, dipyridamole, fenoterol hydrobromide and nisoldipine) for further analysis. Using an ex vivo isometric contractility assay, each compound significantly inhibited uterine contractility, at different potencies (IC50). Overall, these results demonstrate for the first time that high-throughput small-molecules screening of myometrial Ca2+-mobilization is an ideal primary approach for discovering modulators of uterine contractility. PMID:26600013

  12. Age exacerbates chronic catecholamine-induced impairments in contractile reserve in the rat.

    PubMed

    Liles, John T; Ida, Kevin K; Joly, Kristin M; Chapo, Joseph; Plato, Craig F

    2011-08-01

    Contractile reserve decreases with advancing age and chronic isoproterenol (ISO) administration is a well-characterized model of cardiac hypertrophy known to impair cardiovascular function. This study evaluated whether nonsenescent, mature adult rats are more susceptible to detrimental effects of chronic ISO administration than younger adult rats. Rats received daily injections of ISO (0.1 mg/kg sc) or vehicle for 3 wk. ISO induced a greater impairment in contractile reserve [maximum of left ventricular pressure development (Δ+dP/dt(max))] in mature adult ISO-treated (MA-ISO) than in young adult ISO-treated rats (YA-ISO) in response to infusions of mechanistically distinct inotropes (digoxin, milrinone; 20-200 μl·kg(-1)·min(-1)), while basal and agonist-induced changes in heart rate and systolic arterial pressure (SAP) were not different across groups. ISO decreased expression of the calcium handling protein, sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum Ca(2+)-ATPase-2a, in MA-ISO compared with YA, YA-ISO, and MA rats. Chronic ISO also induced greater increases in cardiac hypertrophy [left ventricular (LV) index: 33 ± 3 vs. 22 ± 5%] and caspase-3 activity (34 vs. 5%) in MA-ISO relative to YA-ISO rats. Moreover, β-myosin heavy chain (β-MHC) and atrial natriuretic factor (ANF) mRNA expression was significantly elevated in MA-ISO. These results demonstrate that adult rats develop greater impairments in systolic performance than younger rats when exposed to chronic catecholamine excess. Reduced contractile reserve may result from calcium dysregulation, increased caspase-3 activity, or increased β-MHC and ANF expression. Although several studies report age-related declines in systolic performance in older and senescent animals, the present study demonstrates that catecholamine excess induces reductions in systolic performance significantly earlier in life.

  13. Cardiac-specific overexpression of metallothionein rescues nicotine-induced cardiac contractile dysfunction and interstitial fibrosis.

    PubMed

    Hu, Nan; Guo, Rui; Han, Xuefeng; Zhu, Baocheng; Ren, Jun

    2011-04-10

    Cigarette smoking is a devastating risk factor for cardiovascular diseases and nicotine is believed the main toxin component responsible for the toxic myocardial effects of smoking. Nonetheless, neither the precise mechanism of nicotine-induced cardiac dysfunction nor effective treatment is elucidated. The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of cardiac-specific overexpression of heavy metal scavenger metallothionein on myocardial geometry and mechanical function following nicotine exposure. Adult male friend virus B (FVB) wild-type and metallothionein mice were injected with nicotine (2 mg/kg/d) intraperitoneally for 10 days. Mechanical and intracellular Ca²+ properties were examined. Myocardial histology (cross-sectional area and fibrosis) was evaluated by hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) and Masson trichrome staining, respectively. Oxidative stress and apoptosis were measured by fluoroprobe 5-(6)-chloromethyl-2',7'-dichlorodihydrofluorescein diacetate (CM-H₂DCFDA) fluorescence and caspase-3 activity, respectively. Nicotine exposure failed to affect the protein abundance of metallothionein. Our data revealed reduced echocardiographic contractile capacity (fractional shortening), altered cardiomyocyte contractile and intracellular Ca²+ properties including depressed peak shortening amplitude, maximal velocity of shortening/relengthening, resting and electrically-stimulated rise in intracellular Ca²+, as well as prolonged duration of relengthening and intracellular Ca²+ clearance in hearts from nicotine-treated FVB mice, the effect of which was ameliorated by metallothionein. Biochemical and histological findings depicted overt accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), apoptosis and myocardial fibrosis without any change in myocardial cross-sectional area following nicotine treatment, which was mitigated by metallothionein. Taken together, our findings suggest the antioxidant metallothionein may reconcile short-term nicotine exposure

  14. Executive function needs to be targeted to improve social functioning with Cognitive Remediation Therapy (CRT) in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Penadés, Rafael; Catalán, Rosa; Puig, Olga; Masana, Guillem; Pujol, Núria; Navarro, Víctor; Guarch, Joana; Gastó, Cristóbal

    2010-05-15

    While the role of impaired cognition in accounting for functional outcome in schizophrenia is generally established, the relationship between cognitive and functional change in the context of treatments is far from clear. The current paper tries to identify which cognitive changes lead to improvements in daily functioning among persons with chronic schizophrenia who had current negative symptoms and evidenced neuropsychological impairments. In a previous work, Cognitive Remediation Therapy (CRT) was compared with a control therapy, involving similar length of therapist contact but different targets. At the end of treatment, CRT conferred a benefit to people with schizophrenia in cognition and functioning [Schizophrenia Research, 87 (2006) 323-331]. Subsequently, analyses of covariance (ANCOVA) were conducted with baseline and cognitive change scores as covariates to test whether cognitive change predicted change in functioning. Additionally, statistical tests to establish the mediation path with significant variables were performed. Although verbal memory, but not executive functioning, was associated with functioning at baseline, it was the improvement in executive functioning that predicted improved daily functioning. Verbal memory played a mediator role in the change process. Consequently, in order to improve daily functioning with CRT, executive function still needs to be targeted in despite of multiple cognitive impairments being present.

  15. Improving compact gravity inversion based on new weighting functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghalehnoee, Mohammad Hossein; Ansari, Abdolhamid; Ghorbani, Ahmad

    2016-11-01

    We have developed a method to estimate the geometry, location and densities of anomalies coming from two-dimensional gravity data based on compact gravity inversion technique. Compact gravity inversion is simple, fast and user friendly but severely depends on the number of model parameters, i.e. by increasing the model parameters, the anomalies tend to concentrate near the surface. To overcome this ambiguity new weighting functions based on density contrast, depth, and compactness models have been introduced. Variable compactness factors have been defined here to get either a sharp or a smooth model based on the depth of the source or existence of prior information. Depth weighting derived from one station of gravity data whereas the effect of gravity data is two- and three-dimensional. To compensate this limitation an innovating weighting function namely kernel function has been introduced which multiplies with weight and compactness matrixes to yield a general model weighting function. The method is tested using three different sets of synthetic examples: a body at various depths (20, 40, 80 and 140 m), two bodies at the same depth but various distances to estimate lateral resolution and three bodies with negative and positive density contrast in different depths. The method is also applied to three real gravity data of Woodlawn massive sulfide body, sulfides mineralization of British Colombia and iron ore body of Missouri. The method produces solutions consistent with the known geologic attributes of the gravity sources, illustrating its potential practicality.

  16. Improving compact gravity inversion using new weighting functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghalehnoee, Mohammad Hossein; Ansari, Abdolhamid; Ghorbani, Ahmad

    2017-01-01

    We have developed a method to estimate the geometry, location and densities of anomalies coming from 2-D gravity data based on compact gravity inversion technique. Compact gravity inversion is simple, fast and user friendly but severely depends on the number of model parameters, that is, by increasing the model parameters, the anomalies tend to concentrate near the surface. To overcome this ambiguity new weighting functions based on density contrast, depth, and compactness models have been introduced. Variable compactness factors have been defined here to get either a sharp or a smooth model based on the depth of the source or existence of prior information. Depth weighting derived from one station of gravity data whereas the effect of gravity data is 2-D and 3-D. To compensate this limitation an innovating weighting function namely kernel function has been introduced which multiplies with weight and compactness matrixes to yield a general model weighting function. The method is tested using three different sets of synthetic examples: a body at various depths (20, 40, 80 and 140 m), two bodies at the same depth but various distances to estimate lateral resolution and three bodies with negative and positive density contrast in different depths. The method is also applied to three real gravity data of Woodlawn massive sulphide body, sulphides mineralization of British Colombia and iron ore body of Missouri. The method produces solutions consistent with the known geologic attributes of the gravity sources, illustrating its potential practicality.

  17. Red raspberries can improve motor function in aged rats

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    BACKGROUND: Many foods rich in antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds have been shown to increase health and reduce markers of aging. A number of berry fruits high in polyphenols are known to ameliorate age-related declines in cellular, cognitive and behavioral function in rats. OBJECTIVES: Thi...

  18. The Lean Reference Collection: Improving Functionality through Selection and Weeding.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nolan, Christopher W.

    1991-01-01

    Discusses references collections in academic libraries and offers guidelines for placing materials in a reference collection that focus on their suitability for true reference functions and the expected frequency of use. Problems with poorly managed collections are discussed, and the importance of selection policies and weeding are emphasized. (37…

  19. Improved response functions for gamma-ray skyshine analyses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shultis, J. K.; Faw, R. E.; Deng, X.

    1992-09-01

    A computationally simple method, based on line-beam response functions, is refined for estimating gamma skyshine dose rates. Critical to this method is the availability of an accurate approximation for the line-beam response function (LBRF). In this study, the LBRF is evaluated accurately with the point-kernel technique using recent photon interaction data. Various approximations to the LBRF are considered, and a three parameter formula is selected as the most practical approximation. By fitting the approximating formula to point-kernel results, a set of parameters is obtained that allows the LBRF to be quickly and accurately evaluated for energies between 0.01 and 15 MeV, for source-to-detector distances from 1 to 3000 m, and for beam angles from 0 to 180 degrees. This re-evaluation of the approximate LBRF gives better accuracy, especially at low energies, over a greater source-to-detector range than do previous LBRF approximations. A conical beam response function is also introduced for application to skyshine sources that are azimuthally symmetric about a vertical axis. The new response functions are then applied to three simple skyshine geometries (an open silo geometry, an infinite wall, and a rectangular four-wall building) and the results are compared to previous calculations and benchmark data.

  20. Improvement of tactile roughness discrimination acuity correlates with perception of improved hand function in patients after hand surgery

    PubMed Central

    Fujimoto, Shuhei; Kon, Noriko

    2016-01-01

    [Purpose] The purpose of this study was to elucidate how well patients’ perceptions related to the improvements in their hand function during hospitalization. [Subjects] Sixteen patients who were hospitalized after hand surgery. [Methods] Using the Japanese Society for Surgery of the Hand edition of the Quick-Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand questionnaire; tactile roughness discrimination acuity, motor imagery, motor function, sensory function, and pain of the upper limb were assessed at admission and discharge. Spearman’s rank-order correlation coefficients were calculated using the differences in all assessment items at admission and discharge. A multiple regression analysis (stepwise method) was performed to investigate factors that correlated with improvements in Quick-Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand scores. [Results] The improvement of tactile roughness discrimination acuity was significantly associated with patient perception of improved hand function. [Conclusion] The results suggest that an improvement in tactile roughness discrimination acuity was most strongly correlated with patient perception of improved hand function. PMID:27190473

  1. Contractile properties of skeletal muscle fibre bundles from mice deficient in carbonic anhydrase II.

    PubMed

    Beekley, Matthew D; Wetzel, Petra; Kubis, Hans-Peter; Gros, Gerolf

    2006-07-01

    The function of cytosolic carbonic anhydrase (CA) isozyme II is largely unknown in skeletal muscle. Because of this, we compared the in vitro contractile properties of extensor digitorum longus (EDL) and soleus (SOL) fibre bundles from mice deficient in CA II (CAD) to litter mate controls (LM). Twitch rise, 1/2 relaxation time and peak twitch force at 22 degrees C of fibre bundles from CAD EDL [28.4+/-1.4 ms, 31.2+/-2.3 ms, 6.2+/-1.0 Newton/cm(2) (N/cm(2)), respectively] and CAD SOL (54.2+/-7.5 ms, 75.7+/-13.8 ms, 2.9+/-0.5 N/cm(2), respectively) were significantly higher compared to LM EDL (20.5+/-2.2 ms, 21.9+/-3.7 ms, 4.5+/-0.2 N/cm(2)) and LM SOL (42.8+/-3.5 ms, 51.4+/-2.4 ms, 2.1+/-0.4 N/cm(2)). However, in acidic Krebs-Henseleit solution, mimicking the pH, PCO(2), and HCO(3) (-) of arterial blood from CAD mice, twitch rise, 1/2 relaxation time, and peak twitch force of fibre bundles from CAD EDL (19.3+/-0.7 ms, 19.7+/-2.3 ms, 4.8+/-0.8 N/cm(2)) and CAD SOL (41.4+/-3.6 ms, 51.9+/-5.5 ms, 2.2+/-0.7 N/cm(2)) were not significantly different from LM fibre bundles in normal Krebs-Henseleit solution (EDL: 19.7+/-1.1 ms, 21.6+/-0.6 ms, 4.7+/-0.2 N/cm(2); SOL: 42.5+/-3.1 ms, 51.8+/-2.6 ms, 1.8+/-0.3 N/cm(2)). A higher pH(i) during exposure to acidic bathing solution was maintained by CAD EDL (7.37+/-0.02) and CAD SOL (7.33+/-0.05) compared to LM EDL (7.28+/-0.04) and LM SOL (7.22+/-0.02). This suggests that the skeletal muscle of CAD mice possesses an improved defense of pH(i) against elevated pCO(2). In support of this, apparent non-bicarbonate buffer capacity (in mequiv H(+) (pH unit)(-1) (kg cell H(2)O)(-1)) as determined by pH microelectrode was markedly increased in CAD EDL (75.7+/-4.1) and CAD SOL (85.9+/-3.3) compared to LM EDL (39.3+/-4.7) and LM SOL (37.5+/-3.8). Both latter phenomena may be related to the slowed rate of intracellular acidification seen in CAD SOL in comparison with LM SOL upon an increase in PCO(2) of the bath. In conclusion, skeletal

  2. Caffeine and taurine containing energy drink increases left ventricular contractility in healthy volunteers.

    PubMed

    Doerner, Jonas M; Kuetting, Daniel L; Luetkens, Julian A; Naehle, Claas P; Dabir, Darius; Homsi, Rami; Nadal, Jennifer; Schild, Hans H; Thomas, Daniel K

    2015-03-01

    To investigate the impact of a caffeine and taurine containing energy drink (ED) on myocardial contractility in healthy volunteers using cardiac MR and cardiac MR based strain analysis. 32 healthy volunteers (mean age 28 years) were investigated before and 1 h after consumption of a caffeine and taurine containing ED. For assessment of global cardiac functional parameters balanced SSFP-Cine imaging was performed, whereas CSPAMM tagging was used to evaluate global and regional myocardial strain. In addition, ten randomly chosen subjects were investigated once more using a caffeine only protocol to further evaluate the effect of caffeine solely. Heart rate and blood pressure were recorded throughout all studies. ED consumption led to a significant increase in peak systolic strain (PSS) and peak systolic strain rate (PSSR) 1 h after consumption (PSS: w/o ED -22.8 ± 2.1%; w ED -24.3 ± 2.4%, P = <0.0001 and PSSR: w/o ED -1.2 ± 0.1 1/s; w ED -1.3 ± 0.2 1/s, P = 0.0056), which was not observed in the caffeine only group. In contrast, global left ventricular function was unchanged (P = 0.2076). No significant changes of vital parameters and diastolic filling pattern were detected 1 h after ED consumption. Consumption of a caffeine and taurine containing ED results in a subtle, but significant increase of myocardial contractility 1 h after consumption.

  3. Effects of Substrate Mechanics on Contractility of Cardiomyocytes Generated from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Hazeltine, Laurie B.; Simmons, Chelsey S.; Salick, Max R.; Lian, Xiaojun; Badur, Mehmet G.; Han, Wenqing; Delgado, Stephanie M.; Wakatsuki, Tetsuro; Crone, Wendy C.; Pruitt, Beth L.; Palecek, Sean P.

    2012-01-01

    Human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC-) derived cardiomyocytes have potential applications in drug discovery, toxicity testing, developmental studies, and regenerative medicine. Before these cells can be reliably utilized, characterization of their functionality is required to establish their similarity to native cardiomyocytes. We tracked fluorescent beads embedded in 4.4–99.7 kPa polyacrylamide hydrogels beneath contracting neonatal rat cardiomyocytes and cardiomyocytes generated from hPSCs via growth-factor-induced directed differentiation to measure contractile output in response to changes in substrate mechanics. Contraction stress was determined using traction force microscopy, and morphology was characterized by immunocytochemistry for α-actinin and subsequent image analysis. We found that contraction stress of all types of cardiomyocytes increased with substrate stiffness. This effect was not linked to beating rate or morphology. We demonstrated that hPSC-derived cardiomyocyte contractility responded appropriately to isoprenaline and remained stable in culture over a period of 2 months. This study demonstrates that hPSC-derived cardiomyocytes have appropriate functional responses to substrate stiffness and to a pharmaceutical agent, which motivates their use in further applications such as drug evaluation and cardiac therapies. PMID:22649451

  4. Training improves walking capacity and cardiovascular function in arteritis.

    PubMed

    Lima, Aluísio H R de A; Lins-Filho, Ozéas L; Soares, Antonio H G; Batista, Rafael M F; Ritti-Dias, Raphael M

    2014-06-01

    Patients with arteritis have a high risk of mortality from cardiovascular disorders. However, whether these patients benefit from an intervention involving exercise remains unclear. In this study, we assessed the effects of an unsupervised exercise program on walking capacity, quality of life, and cardiovascular parameters of a patient with arteritis. A 33-year-old man reporting symptoms of claudication during walking was studied. Imaging tests revealed severe atherosclerosis and arteritis was diagnosed. Five weekly sessions of walking for 16 weeks increased claudication distance and total walking distance, produced improvements in six out of the eight health-related quality-of-life domains, decreased systolic blood pressure, and changed cardiac autonomic modulation toward parasympathetic modulation. This case report showed that unsupervised exercise training improved walking capacity, quality of life, and cardiovascular parameters in a patient with arteritis.

  5. Wound-induced contractile ring: a model for cytokinesis.

    PubMed

    Darenfed, Hassina; Mandato, Craig A

    2005-12-01

    The actomyosin-based contractile ring is required for several biological processes, such as wound healing and cytokinesis of animal cells. Despite progress in defining the roles of this structure in both wound closure and cell division, we still do not fully understand how an actomyosin ring is spatially and temporally assembled, nor do we understand the molecular mechanism of its contraction. Recent results have demonstrated that microtubule-dependent local assembly of F-actin and myosin-II is present in wound closure and is similar to that in cytokinesis in animal cells. Furthermore, signalling factors such as small Rho GTPases have been shown to be involved in the regulation of actin dynamics during both processes. In this review we address recent findings in an attempt to better understand the dynamics of actomyosin contractile rings during wound healing as compared with the final step of animal cell division.

  6. Contractile system of muscle as an auto-oscillator.

    PubMed

    Ishiwata, Shin'ichi; Shimamoto, Yuta; Fukuda, Norio

    2011-05-01

    It is widely known that the contractile system of muscle takes on either the state of contraction (force-generating) or the state of relaxation (non-force-generating), which is known as the "all-or-nothing" principle. However, it is important to note that under intermediate activation conditions there exists a third state, which demonstrates auto-oscillatory properties and is termed SPOC (SPontaneous Oscillatory Contraction) state. We present a phase diagram, in which the states of the contractile system of muscle are divided into three regions consisting of contraction, relaxation and SPOC states. In the present review, experimental data related to the characteristics of SPOC are summarized and the mechanism of SPOC is described. We propose that the bio-motile system itself is an auto-oscillator, even in a membrane-less supra-molecular structure composed of an assembly of molecular motors and cytoskeletons (actin filaments and microtubules). Finally, the physiological significance of SPOC is discussed.

  7. Physical Rehabilitation Improves Muscle Function Following Volumetric Muscle Loss Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-12-19

    diabetes ) conditions [17,18]. For acute muscle injuries, it has been shown to accelerate muscle healing/ regeneration by modulating the immune response...The foot of the animal was strapped to a footplate attached to a dual-mode muscle lever system (Aurora Scientific Inc., ON, Canada), and the knee and...Combination of exercise training and diet restriction normalizes limited exercise capacity and impaired skeletal muscle function in diet-induced diabetic mice

  8. Analytic improvements to the atmospheric turbulence optical transfer function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tofsted, David H.

    2003-09-01

    The standard method used for modeling optical turbulence effects on imaging uses an optical transfer function (OTF). To model this function the short- and long-exposure limiting cases exist. The short-exposure case is handled by modifying the long-exposure case to remove wavefront tilt assessed at the sensor entrance pupil. Then, depending on whether one is in the "near-field" or the "far-field," one of two subcases is used. These evaluations require a model of the refractive index spectrum. Typically this model is assumed to be the Kolmogorov spectrum where an inner scale is set to zero and outer scale is infinite. However, for real atmospheres the inner and outer scales affect turbulence predictions through a modified spectrum. The difficulty using non-limiting values for these parameters is that double integrals must then be assessed. However, in this paper analytic forms are developed to describe the spectrum, permitting analytic solutions to these integrals. The result is that we can express quantities such as the Fried coherence diameter in closed form accounting for both inner and outer scale effects. Also, expressions for the inner and outer scales of turbulence can be written as functions of the atmospheric surface layer stability. Lastly, it is shown that the near/far-field effect does not easily subdivide into two cases. In fact, the distance dependence of the tilt effect is shown to span a range of 107 in the governing dimensionless parameter. To model this continuum a unified treatment is considered.

  9. Low Intensity, High Frequency Vibration Training to Improve Musculoskeletal Function in a Mouse Model of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Novotny, Susan A.; Mader, Tara L.; Greising, Angela G.; Lin, Angela S.; Guldberg, Robert E.; Warren, Gordon L.; Lowe, Dawn A.

    2014-01-01

    The objective of the study was to determine if low intensity, high frequency vibration training impacted the musculoskeletal system in a mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, relative to healthy mice. Three-week old wildtype (n = 26) and mdx mice (n = 22) were randomized to non-vibrated or vibrated (45 Hz and 0.6 g, 15 min/d, 5 d/wk) groups. In vivo and ex vivo contractile function of the anterior crural and extensor digitorum longus muscles, respectively, were assessed following 8 wks of vibration. Mdx mice were injected 5 and 1 days prior to sacrifice with Calcein and Xylenol, respectively. Muscles were prepared for histological and triglyceride analyses and subcutaneous and visceral fat pads were excised and weighed. Tibial bones were dissected and analyzed by micro-computed tomography for trabecular morphometry at the metaphysis, and cortical geometry and density at the mid-diaphysis. Three-point bending tests were used to assess cortical bone mechanical properties and a subset of tibiae was processed for dynamic histomorphometry. Vibration training for 8 wks did not alter trabecular morphometry, dynamic histomorphometry, cortical geometry, or mechanical properties (P≥0.34). Vibration did not alter any measure of muscle contractile function (P≥0.12); however the preservation of muscle function and morphology in mdx mice indicates vibration is not deleterious to muscle lacking dystrophin. Vibrated mice had smaller subcutaneous fat pads (P = 0.03) and higher intramuscular triglyceride concentrations (P = 0.03). These data suggest that vibration training at 45 Hz and 0.6 g did not significantly impact the tibial bone and the surrounding musculature, but may influence fat distribution in mice. PMID:25121503

  10. Low intensity, high frequency vibration training to improve musculoskeletal function in a mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Novotny, Susan A; Mader, Tara L; Greising, Angela G; Lin, Angela S; Guldberg, Robert E; Warren, Gordon L; Lowe, Dawn A

    2014-01-01

    The objective of the study was to determine if low intensity, high frequency vibration training impacted the musculoskeletal system in a mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, relative to healthy mice. Three-week old wildtype (n = 26) and mdx mice (n = 22) were randomized to non-vibrated or vibrated (45 Hz and 0.6 g, 15 min/d, 5 d/wk) groups. In vivo and ex vivo contractile function of the anterior crural and extensor digitorum longus muscles, respectively, were assessed following 8 wks of vibration. Mdx mice were injected 5 and 1 days prior to sacrifice with Calcein and Xylenol, respectively. Muscles were prepared for histological and triglyceride analyses and subcutaneous and visceral fat pads were excised and weighed. Tibial bones were dissected and analyzed by micro-computed tomography for trabecular morphometry at the metaphysis, and cortical geometry and density at the mid-diaphysis. Three-point bending tests were used to assess cortical bone mechanical properties and a subset of tibiae was processed for dynamic histomorphometry. Vibration training for 8 wks did not alter trabecular morphometry, dynamic histomorphometry, cortical geometry, or mechanical properties (P ≥ 0.34). Vibration did not alter any measure of muscle contractile function (P ≥ 0.12); however the preservation of muscle function and morphology in mdx mice indicates vibration is not deleterious to muscle lacking dystrophin. Vibrated mice had smaller subcutaneous fat pads (P = 0.03) and higher intramuscular triglyceride concentrations (P = 0.03). These data suggest that vibration training at 45 Hz and 0.6 g did not significantly impact the tibial bone and the surrounding musculature, but may influence fat distribution in mice.

  11. Myocardial contractility in the stress echo lab: from pathophysiological toy to clinical tool

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Up-regulation of Ca2+ entry through Ca2+ channels by high rates of beating is involved in the frequency-dependent regulation of contractility: this process is crucial in adaptation to exercise and stress and is universally known as force-frequency relation (FFR). Disturbances in calcium handling play a central role in the disturbed contractile function in myocardial failure. Measurements of twitch tension in isolated left-ventricular strips from explanted cardiomyopathic hearts compared with non-failing hearts show flat or biphasic FFR, while it is up-sloping in normal hearts. Starting in 2003 we introduced the FFR measurement in the stress echo lab using the end-systolic pressure (ESP)/End-systolic volume index (ESVi) ratio (the Suga index) at increasing heart rates. We studied a total of 2,031 patients reported in peer-reviewed journals: 483 during exercise, 34 with pacing, 850 with dobutamine and 664 during dipyridamole stress echo. We demonstrated the feasibility of FFR in the stress echo lab, the clinical usefulness of FFR for diagnosing latent contractile dysfunction in apparently normal hearts, and residual contractile reserve in dilated idiopathic and ischemic cardiomyopathy. In 400 patients with left ventricular dysfunction (ejection fraction 30 ± 9%) with negative stress echocardiography results, event-free survival was higher (p < 0.001) in patients with ΔESPVR (the difference between peak and rest end-systolic pressure-volume ratio, ESPVR) ≥ 0.4 mmHg/mL/m2. The prognostic stratification of patients was better with FFR, beyond the standard LV ejection fraction evaluation, also in the particular settings of severe mitral regurgitation or diabetics without stress-induced ischemia. In the particular setting of selection of heart transplant donors, the stress echo FFR was able to correctly select 34 marginal donor hearts efficiently transplanted in emergency recipients. Starting in 2007, we introduced an operator-independent cutaneous sensor

  12. Myocardial contractility in the stress echo lab: from pathophysiological toy to clinical tool.

    PubMed

    Bombardini, Tonino; Zoppè, Monica; Ciampi, Quirino; Cortigiani, Lauro; Agricola, Eustachio; Salvadori, Stefano; Loni, Tiziana; Pratali, Lorenza; Picano, Eugenio

    2013-11-18

    Up-regulation of Ca2+ entry through Ca2+ channels by high rates of beating is involved in the frequency-dependent regulation of contractility: this process is crucial in adaptation to exercise and stress and is universally known as force-frequency relation (FFR). Disturbances in calcium handling play a central role in the disturbed contractile function in myocardial failure. Measurements of twitch tension in isolated left-ventricular strips from explanted cardiomyopathic hearts compared with non-failing hearts show flat or biphasic FFR, while it is up-sloping in normal hearts. Starting in 2003 we introduced the FFR measurement in the stress echo lab using the end-systolic pressure (ESP)/End-systolic volume index (ESVi) ratio (the Suga index) at increasing heart rates. We studied a total of 2,031 patients reported in peer-reviewed journals: 483 during exercise, 34 with pacing, 850 with dobutamine and 664 during dipyridamole stress echo. We demonstrated the feasibility of FFR in the stress echo lab, the clinical usefulness of FFR for diagnosing latent contractile dysfunction in apparently normal hearts, and residual contractile reserve in dilated idiopathic and ischemic cardiomyopathy. In 400 patients with left ventricular dysfunction (ejection fraction 30 ± 9%) with negative stress echocardiography results, event-free survival was higher (p < 0.001) in patients with ΔESPVR (the difference between peak and rest end-systolic pressure-volume ratio, ESPVR) ≥ 0.4 mmHg/mL/m2. The prognostic stratification of patients was better with FFR, beyond the standard LV ejection fraction evaluation, also in the particular settings of severe mitral regurgitation or diabetics without stress-induced ischemia. In the particular setting of selection of heart transplant donors, the stress echo FFR was able to correctly select 34 marginal donor hearts efficiently transplanted in emergency recipients. Starting in 2007, we introduced an operator-independent cutaneous sensor

  13. R4496C RyR2 mutation impairs atrial and ventricular contractility

    PubMed Central

    Coppini, Raffaele; Scellini, Beatrice; Ferrara, Claudia; Pioner, Josè Manuel; Mazzoni, Luca; Priori, Silvia; Cerbai, Elisabetta; Tesi, Chiara; Poggesi, Corrado

    2016-01-01

    Ryanodine receptor (RyR2) is the major Ca2+ channel of the cardiac sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) and plays a crucial role in the generation of myocardial force. Changes in RyR2 gating properties and resulting increases in its open probability (Po) are associated with Ca2+ leakage from the SR and arrhythmias; however, the effects of RyR2 dysfunction on myocardial contractility are unknown. Here, we investigated the possibility that a RyR2 mutation associated with catecholaminergic polymorphic ventricular tachycardia, R4496C, affects the contractile function of atrial and ventricular myocardium. We measured isometric twitch tension in left ventricular and atrial trabeculae from wild-type mice and heterozygous transgenic mice carrying the R4496C RyR2 mutation and found that twitch force was comparable under baseline conditions (30°C, 2 mM [Ca2+]o, 1 Hz). However, the positive inotropic responses to high stimulation frequency, 0.1 µM isoproterenol, and 5 mM [Ca2+]o were decreased in R4496C trabeculae, as was post-rest potentiation. We investigated the mechanisms underlying inotropic insufficiency in R4496C muscles in single ventricular myocytes. Under baseline conditions, the amplitude of the Ca2+ transient was normal, despite the reduced SR Ca2+ content. Under inotropic challenge, however, R4496C myocytes were unable to boost the amplitude of Ca2+ transients because they are incapable of properly increasing the amount of Ca2+ stored in the SR because of a larger SR Ca2+ leakage. Recovery of force in response to premature stimuli was faster in R4496C myocardium, despite the unchanged rates of recovery of L-type Ca2+ channel current (ICa-L) and SR Ca2+ content in single myocytes. A faster recovery from inactivation of the mutant R4496C channels could explain this behavior. In conclusion, changes in RyR2 channel gating associated with the R4496C mutation could be directly responsible for the alterations in both ventricular and atrial contractility. The increased RyR2 Po

  14. Application of retinoic acid improves form and function of tissue engineered corneal construct

    PubMed Central

    Abidin, Fadhilah Z; Gouveia, Ricardo M; Connon, Che J

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Retinoic acid has recently been shown to control the phenotype and extracellular matrix composition of corneal stromal cells cultured in vitro as monolayers. This study set out to investigate the effects of retinoic acid on human corneal keratocytes within a 3D environment. Human corneal keratocytes were encapsulated in collagen gels, which were subsequently compressed under load, and cultured in serum-free media supplemented with 10 µM retinoic acid or DMSO vehicle for 30 days. Cell proliferation was quantified on selected days, while the expression of several important keratocytes markers was evaluated at day 30 using RT-PCR and immunoblotting. The weight and size of the collagen constructs were measured before and after hydration and contraction analyses. Retinoic acid enhanced keratocyte proliferation until day 30, whereas cells in control culture conditions showed reduced numbers after day 21. Both gene and protein expressions of keratocyte-characteristic proteoglycans (keratocan, lumican and decorin), corneal crystallins and collagen type I and V were significantly increased following retinoic acid supplementation. Retinoic acid also significantly reduced the expression of matrix metalloproteases 1, 3 and 9 while not increasing α-smooth muscle actin and fibronectin expression. Furthermore, these effects were also correlated with the ability of retinoic acid to significantly inhibit the contractility of keratocytes while allowing the build-up of corneal stromal extracellular matrix within the 3D constructs. Thus, retinoic acid supplementation represents a promising strategy to improve the phenotype of 3D-cultured keratocytes, and their usefulness as a model of corneal stroma for corneal biology and regenerative medicine applications. PMID:26496651

  15. Application of retinoic acid improves form and function of tissue engineered corneal construct.

    PubMed

    Abidin, Fadhilah Z; Gouveia, Ricardo M; Connon, Che J

    2015-01-01

    Retinoic acid has recently been shown to control the phenotype and extracellular matrix composition of corneal stromal cells cultured in vitro as monolayers. This study set out to investigate the effects of retinoic acid on human corneal keratocytes within a 3D environment. Human corneal keratocytes were encapsulated in collagen gels, which were subsequently compressed under load, and cultured in serum-free media supplemented with 10 µM retinoic acid or DMSO vehicle for 30 days. Cell proliferation was quantified on selected days, while the expression of several important keratocytes markers was evaluated at day 30 using RT-PCR and immunoblotting. The weight and size of the collagen constructs were measured before and after hydration and contraction analyses. Retinoic acid enhanced keratocyte proliferation until day 30, whereas cells in control culture conditions showed reduced numbers after day 21. Both gene and protein expressions of keratocyte-characteristic proteoglycans (keratocan, lumican and decorin), corneal crystallins and collagen type I and V were significantly increased following retinoic acid supplementation. Retinoic acid also significantly reduced the expression of matrix metalloproteases 1, 3 and 9 while not increasing α-smooth muscle actin and fibronectin expression. Furthermore, these effects were also correlated with the ability of retinoic acid to significantly inhibit the contractility of keratocytes while allowing the build-up of corneal stromal extracellular matrix within the 3D constructs. Thus, retinoic acid supplementation represents a promising strategy to improve the phenotype of 3D-cultured keratocytes, and their usefulness as a model of corneal stroma for corneal biology and regenerative medicine applications.

  16. Multicellular contractility contributes to the emergence of mesothelioma nodules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Czirok, Andras

    Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) nodules arise from the mesothelial lining of the pleural cavity by a poorly understood mechanism. We demonstrate that macroscopic multicellular aggregates, reminiscent of the MPM nodules found in patients, develop when MPM cell lines are cultured at high cell densities for several weeks. Surprisingly, the nodule-like aggregates do not arise by excessive local cell proliferation, but by myosin II-driven cell contractility. Contractile nodules contain prominent actin cables that can span several cells. Several features of the in vitro MPM nodule development can be explained by a computational model that assumes uniform and steady intercellular contractile forces within a monolayer of cells, and a mechanical load-dependent lifetime of cell-cell contacts. The model behaves as a self-tensioned Maxwell fluid and exhibits an instability that leads to pattern formation. Altogether, our findings suggest that inhibition of the actomyosin system may provide a hitherto not utilized therapeutic approach to affect MPM growth. NIH R01-GM102801.

  17. Human capacity for explosive force production: neural and contractile determinants.

    PubMed

    Folland, J P; Buckthorpe, M W; Hannah, R

    2014-12-01

    This study assessed the integrative neural and contractile determinants of human knee extension explosive force production. Forty untrained participants performed voluntary and involuntary (supramaximally evoked twitches and octets - eight pulses at 300 Hz that elicit the maximum possible rate of force development) explosive isometric contractions of the knee extensors. Explosive force (F0-150 ms) and sequential rate of force development (RFD, 50-ms epochs) were measured. Surface electromyography (EMG) amplitude was recorded (superficial quadriceps and hamstrings, 50-ms epochs) and normalized (quadriceps to Mmax, hamstrings to EMGmax). Maximum voluntary force (MVF) was also assessed. Multiple linear regressions assessed the significant neural and contractile determinants of absolute and relative (%MVF) explosive force and sequential RFD. Explosive force production exhibited substantial interindividual variability, particularly during the early phase of contraction [F50, 13-fold (absolute); 7.5-fold (relative)]. Multiple regression explained 59-93% (absolute) and 35-60% (relative) of the variance in explosive force production. The primary determinants of explosive force changed during the contraction (F0-50, quadriceps EMG and Twitch F; RFD50-100, Octet RFD0-50; F100-150, MVF). In conclusion, explosive force production was largely explained by predictor neural and contractile variables, but the specific determinants changed during the phase of contraction.

  18. Intrauterine Telemetry to Measure Mouse Contractile Pressure In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Rada, Cara C.; Pierce, Stephanie L.; Grotegut, Chad A.; England, Sarah K.

    2015-01-01

    A complex integration of molecular and electrical signals is needed to transform a quiescent uterus into a contractile organ at the end of pregnancy. Despite the discovery of key regulators of uterine contractility, this process is still not fully understood. Transgenic mice provide an ideal model in which to study parturition. Previously, the only method to study uterine contractility in the mouse was ex vivo isometric tension recordings, which are suboptimal for several reasons. The uterus must be removed from its physiological environment, a limited time course of investigation is possible, and the mice must be sacrificed. The recent development of radiometric telemetry has allowed for longitudinal, real-time measurements of in vivo intrauterine pressure in mice. Here, the implantation of an intrauterine telemeter to measure pressure changes in the mouse uterus from mid-pregnancy until delivery is described. By comparing differences in pressures between wild type and transgenic mice, the physiological impact of a gene of interest can be elucidated. This technique should expedite the development of therapeutics used to treat myometrial disorders during pregnancy, including preterm labor. PMID:25867820

  19. IP3 receptors regulate vascular smooth muscle contractility and hypertension

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Qingsong; Zhao, Guiling; Fang, Xi; Peng, Xiaohong; Tang, Huayuan; Wang, Hong; Jing, Ran; Liu, Jie; Ouyang, Kunfu

    2016-01-01

    Inositol 1, 4, 5-trisphosphate receptor–mediated (IP3R-mediated) calcium (Ca2+) release has been proposed to play an important role in regulating vascular smooth muscle cell (VSMC) contraction for decades. However, whether and how IP3R regulates blood pressure in vivo remains unclear. To address these questions, we have generated a smooth muscle–specific IP3R triple-knockout (smTKO) mouse model using a tamoxifen-inducible system. In this study, the role of IP3R-mediated Ca2+ release in adult VSMCs on aortic vascular contractility and blood pressure was assessed following tamoxifen induction. We demonstrated that deletion of IP3Rs significantly reduced aortic contractile responses to vasoconstrictors, including phenylephrine, U46619, serotonin, and endothelin 1. Deletion of IP3Rs also dramatically reduced the phosphorylation of MLC20 and MYPT1 induced by U46619. Furthermore, although the basal blood pressure of smTKO mice remained similar to that of wild-type controls, the increase in systolic blood pressure upon chronic infusion of angiotensin II was significantly attenuated in smTKO mice. Taken together, our results demonstrate an important role for IP3R-mediated Ca2+ release in VSMCs in regulating vascular contractility and hypertension. PMID:27777977

  20. Algisyl-LVR™ with coronary artery bypass grafting reduces left ventricular wall stress and improves function in the failing human heart☆,☆☆

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Lik Chuan; Wall, Samuel T.; Klepach, Doron; Ge, Liang; Zhang, Zhihong; Lee, Randall J.; Hinson, Andy; Gorman, Joseph H.; Gorman, Robert C.; Guccione, Julius M.

    2013-01-01

    Background Left ventricular (LV) wall stress reduction is a cornerstone in treating heart failure. Large animal models and computer simulations indicate that adding non-contractile material to the damaged LV wall can potentially reduce myofiber stress. We sought to quantify the effects of a novel implantable hydrogel (Algisyl-LVR™) treatment in combination with coronary artery bypass grafting (i.e. Algisyl-LVR™+CABG) on both LV function and wall stress in heart failure patients. Methods and results Magnetic resonance images obtained before treatment (n=3), and at 3 months (n=3) and 6 months (n=2) afterwards were used to reconstruct the LV geometry. Cardiac function was quantified using end-diastolic volume (EDV), end-systolic volume (ESV), regional wall thickness, sphericity index and regional myofiber stress computed using validated mathematical modeling. The LV became more ellipsoidal after treatment, and both EDV and ESV decreased substantially 3 months after treatment in all patients; EDV decreased from 264±91 ml to 146±86 ml and ESV decreased from 184±85 ml to 86±76 ml. Ejection fraction increased from 32±8% to 47±18% during that period. Volumetric-averaged wall thickness increased in all patients, from 1.06±0.21 cm (baseline) to 1.3±0.26 cm (3 months). These changes were accompanied by about a 35% decrease in myofiber stress at end-of-diastole and at end-of-systole. Post-treatment myofiber stress became more uniform in the LV. Conclusions These results support the novel concept that Algisyl-LVR™+CABG treatment leads to decreased myofiber stress, restored LV geometry and improved function. PMID:23394895

  1. Myoblasts transplanted into rat infarcted myocardium are functionally isolated from their host

    PubMed Central

    Léobon, Bertrand; Garcin, Isabelle; Menasché, Philippe; Vilquin, Jean-Thomas; Audinat, Etienne; Charpak, Serge

    2003-01-01

    Survival and differentiation of myogenic cells grafted into infarcted myocardium have raised the hope that cell transplantation becomes a new therapy for cardiovascular diseases. The approach was further supported by transplantation of skeletal myoblasts, which was shown to improve cardiac performance in several animal species. Despite the success of myoblast transplantation and its recent trial in human, the mechanism responsible for the functional improvement remains unclear. Here, we used intracellular recordings coupled to video and fluorescence microscopy to establish whether myoblasts, genetically labeled with enhanced GFP and transplanted into rat infarcted myocardium, retain excitable and contractile properties, and participate actively to cardiac function. Our results indicate that grafted myoblasts differentiate into peculiar hyperexcitable myotubes with a contractile activity fully independent of neighboring cardiomyocytes. We conclude that mechanisms other than electromechanical coupling between grafted and host cells are involved in the improvement of cardiac function. PMID:12805561

  2. α-Actinin links extracellular matrix rigidity-sensing contractile units with periodic cell-edge retractions

    PubMed Central

    Meacci, Giovanni; Wolfenson, Haguy; Liu, Shuaimin; Stachowiak, Matthew R.; Iskratsch, Thomas; Mathur, Anurag; Ghassemi, Saba; Gauthier, Nils; Tabdanov, Erdem; Lohner, James; Gondarenko, Alexander; Chander, Ashok C.; Roca-Cusachs, Pere; O’Shaughnessy, Ben; Hone, James; Sheetz, Michael P.

    2016-01-01

    During spreading and migration, the leading edges of cells undergo periodic protrusion–retraction cycles. The functional purpose of these cycles is unclear. Here, using submicrometer polydimethylsiloxane pillars as substrates for cell spreading, we show that periodic edge retractions coincide with peak forces produced by local contractile units (CUs) that assemble and disassemble along the cell edge to test matrix rigidity. We find that, whereas actin rearward flow produces a relatively constant force inward, the peak of local contractile forces by CUs scales with rigidity. The cytoskeletal protein α-actinin is shared between these two force-producing systems. It initially localizes to the CUs and subsequently moves inward with the actin flow. Knockdown of α-actinin causes aberrant rigidity sensing, loss of CUs, loss of protrusion–retraction cycles, and, surprisingly, enables the cells to proliferate on soft matrices. We present a model based on these results in which local CUs drive rigidity sensing and adhesion formation. PMID:27122603

  3. Improving Kepler Pipeline Sensitivity with Pixel Response Function Photometry.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morris, Robert L.; Bryson, Steve; Jenkins, Jon Michael; Smith, Jeffrey C

    2014-06-01

    We present the results of our investigation into the feasibility and expected benefits of implementing PRF-fitting photometry in the Kepler Science Processing Pipeline. The Kepler Pixel Response Function (PRF) describes the expected system response to a point source at infinity and includes the effects of the optical point spread function, the CCD detector responsivity function, and spacecraft pointing jitter. Planet detection in the Kepler pipeline is currently based on simple aperture photometry (SAP), which is most effective when applied to uncrowded bright stars. Its effectiveness diminishes rapidly as target brightness decreases relative to the effects of noise sources such as detector electronics, background stars, and image motion. In contrast, PRF photometry is based on fitting an explicit model of image formation to the data and naturally accounts for image motion and contributions of background stars. The key to obtaining high-quality photometry from PRF fitting is a high-quality model of the system's PRF, while the key to efficiently processing the large number of Kepler targets is an accurate catalog and accurate mapping of celestial coordinates onto the focal plane. If the CCD coordinates of stellar centroids are known a priori then the problem of PRF fitting becomes linear. A model of the Kepler PRF was constructed at the time of spacecraft commissioning by fitting piecewise polynomial surfaces to data from dithered full frame images. While this model accurately captured the initial state of the system, the PRF has evolved dynamically since then and has been seen to deviate significantly from the initial (static) model. We construct a dynamic PRF model which is then used to recover photometry for all targets of interest. Both simulation tests and results from Kepler flight data demonstrate the effectiveness of our approach. Kepler was selected as the 10th mission of the Discovery Program. Funding for this mission is provided by NASA’s Science

  4. Cellular contractility changes are sufficient to drive epithelial scattering.

    PubMed

    Hoj, Jacob P; Davis, John A; Fullmer, Kendra E; Morrell, David J; Saguibo, Nicholas E; Schuler, Jeffrey T; Tuttle, Kevin J; Hansen, Marc D H

    2014-08-15

    Epithelial scattering occurs when cells disassemble cell-cell junctions, allowing individual epithelial cells to act in a solitary manner. Epithelial scattering occurs frequently in development, where it accompanies epithelial-mesenchymal transitions and is required for individual cells to migrate and invade. While migration and invasion have received extensive research focus, how cell-cell junctions are detached remains poorly understood. An open debate has been whether disruption of cell-cell interactions occurs by remodeling of cell-cell adhesions, increased traction forces through cell substrate adhesions, or some combination of both processes. Here we seek to examine how changes in adhesion and contractility are coupled to drive detachment of individual epithelial cells during hepatocyte growth factor (HGF)/scatter factor-induced EMT. We find that HGF signaling does not alter the strength of cell-cell adhesion between cells in suspension, suggesting that changes in cell-cell adhesion strength might not accompany epithelial scattering. Instead, cell-substrate adhesion seems to play a bigger role, as cell-substrate adhesions are stronger in cells treated with HGF and since rapid scattering in cells treated with HGF and TGFβ is associated with a dramatic increase in focal adhesions. Increases in the pliability of the substratum, reducing cells ability to generate traction on the substrate, alter cells׳ ability to scatter. Further consistent with changes in substrate adhesion being required for cell-cell detachment during EMT, scattering is impaired in cells expressing both active and inactive RhoA mutants, though in different ways. In addition to its roles in driving assembly of both stress fibers and focal adhesions, RhoA also generates myosin-based contractility in cells. We therefore sought to examine how RhoA-dependent contractility contributes to cell-cell detachment. Inhibition of Rho kinase or myosin II induces the same effect on cells, namely an

  5. Early Intervention to Improve Hand Function in Hemiplegic Cerebral Palsy

    PubMed Central

    Basu, Anna Purna; Pearse, Janice; Kelly, Susan; Wisher, Vicki; Kisler, Jill

    2015-01-01

    Children with hemiplegic cerebral palsy often have marked hand involvement with excessive thumb adduction and flexion and limited active wrist extension from infancy. Post-lesional aberrant plasticity can lead to progressive abnormalities of the developing motor system. Disturbances of somatosensory and visual function and developmental disregard contribute to difficulties with hand use. Progressive soft tissue and bony changes may occur, leading to contractures, which further limit function in a vicious cycle. Early intervention might help to break this cycle, however, the precise nature and appropriateness of the intervention must be carefully considered. Traditional approaches to the hemiplegic upper limb include medications and botulinum toxin injections to manage abnormalities of tone, and surgical interventions. Therapist input, including provision of orthoses, remains a mainstay although many therapies have not been well evaluated. There has been a recent increase in interventions for the hemiplegic upper limb, mostly aimed outside the period of infancy. These include trials of constraint-induced movement therapy (CIMT) and bimanual therapy as well as the use of virtual reality and robot-assisted therapy. In future, non-invasive brain stimulation may be combined with therapy. Interventions under investigation in the infant age group include modified CIMT and action observation therapy. A further approach which may be suited to the infant with thumb-in-palm deformity, but which requires evaluation, is the use of elastic taping. Enhanced cutaneous feedback through mechanical stimulation to the skin provided by the tape during movement has been postulated to modulate ongoing muscle activity. If effective, this would represent a low-cost, safe, widely applicable early intervention. PMID:25610423

  6. Taurine depresses cardiac contractility and enhances systemic heart glucose utilization in the cuttlefish, Sepia officinalis.

    PubMed

    MacCormack, Tyson J; Callaghan, N I; Sykes, A V; Driedzic, W R

    2016-02-01

    Taurine is the most abundant amino acid in the blood of the cuttlefish, Sepia officinalis, where levels can exceed 200 mmol L(-1). In mammals, intracellular taurine modulates cardiac Ca(2+) handling and carbohydrate metabolism at much lower concentrations but it is not clear if it exerts similar actions in cephalopods. Blood Ca(2+) levels are high in cephalopods and we hypothesized that taurine would depress cardiac Ca(2+) flux and modulate contractility in systemic and branchial hearts of cuttlefish. Heart performance was assessed with an in situ perfused systemic heart preparation and contractility was evaluated using isometrically contracting systemic and branchial heart muscle rings. Stroke volume, cardiac output, and Ca(2+) sensitivity were significantly lower in systemic hearts perfused with supplemental taurine (100 mmol L(-1)) than in controls. In muscle ring preparations, taurine impaired relaxation at high contraction frequencies, an effect abolished by supra-physiological Ca(2+) levels. Taurine did not affect oxygen consumption in non-contracting systemic heart muscle, but extracellular glucose utilization was twice that of control preparations. Collectively, our results suggest that extracellular taurine depresses cardiac Ca(2+) flux and potentiates glucose utilization in cuttlefish. Variations in taurine levels may represent an important mechanism for regulating cardiovascular function and metabolism in cephalopods.

  7. Distinct contractile and cytoskeletal protein patterns in the Antarctic midge are elicited by desiccation and rehydration.

    PubMed

    Li, Aiqing; Benoit, Joshua B; Lopez-Martinez, Giancarlo; Elnitsky, Michael A; Lee, Richard E; Denlinger, David L

    2009-05-01

    Desiccation presents a major challenge for the Antarctic midge, Belgica antarctica. In this study, we use proteomic profiling to evaluate protein changes in the larvae elicited by dehydration and rehydration. Larvae were desiccated at 75% relative humidity (RH) for 12 h to achieve a body water loss of 35%, approximately half of the water that can be lost before the larvae succumb to dehydration. To evaluate the rehydration response, larvae were first desiccated, then rehydrated for 6 h at 100% RH and then in water for 6 h. Controls were held continuously at 100% RH. Protein analysis was performed using 2-DE and nanoscale capillary LC/MS/MS. Twenty-four identified proteins changed in abundance in response to desiccation: 16 were more abundant and 8 were less abundant; 84% of these proteins were contractile or cytoskeletal proteins. Thirteen rehydration-regulated proteins were identified: 8 were more abundant and 5 were less abundant, and 69% of these proteins were also contractile or cytoskeletal proteins. Additional proteins responsive to desiccation and rehydration were involved in functions including stress responses, energy metabolism, protein synthesis, glucogenesis and membrane transport. We conclude that the major protein responses elicited by both desiccation and rehydration are linked to body contraction and cytoskeleton rearrangements.

  8. From damage response to action potentials: early evolution of neural and contractile modules in stem eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Brunet, Thibaut; Arendt, Detlev

    2016-01-01

    Eukaryotic cells convert external stimuli into membrane depolarization, which in turn triggers effector responses such as secretion and contraction. Here, we put forward an evolutionary hypothesis for the origin of the depolarization–contraction–secretion (DCS) coupling, the functional core of animal neuromuscular circuits. We propose that DCS coupling evolved in unicellular stem eukaryotes as part of an ‘emergency response’ to calcium influx upon membrane rupture. We detail how this initial response was subsequently modified into an ancient mechanosensory–effector arc, present in the last eukaryotic common ancestor, which enabled contractile amoeboid movement that is widespread in extant eukaryotes. Elaborating on calcium-triggered membrane depolarization, we reason that the first action potentials evolved alongside the membrane of sensory-motile cilia, with the first voltage-sensitive sodium/calcium channels (Nav/Cav) enabling a fast and coordinated response of the entire cilium to mechanosensory stimuli. From the cilium, action potentials then spread across the entire cell, enabling global cellular responses such as concerted contraction in several independent eukaryote lineages. In animals, this process led to the invention of mechanosensory contractile cells. These gave rise to mechanosensory receptor cells, neurons and muscle cells by division of labour and can be regarded as the founder cell type of the nervous system. PMID:26598726

  9. Contractile properties of rat, rhesus monkey, and human type I muscle fibers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Widrick, J. J.; Romatowski, J. G.; Karhanek, M.; Fitts, R. H.

    1997-01-01

    It is well known that skeletal muscle intrinsic maximal shortening velocity is inversely related to species body mass. However, there is uncertainty regarding the relationship between the contractile properties of muscle fibers obtained from commonly studied laboratory animals and those obtained from humans. In this study we determined the contractile properties of single chemically skinned fibers prepared from rat, rhesus monkey, and human soleus and gastrocnemius muscle samples under identical experimental conditions. All fibers used for analysis expressed type I myosin heavy chain as determined by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Allometric coefficients for type I fibers from each muscle indicated that there was little change in peak tension (force/fiber cross-sectional area) across species. In contrast, both soleus and gastrocnemius type I fiber maximal unloaded shortening velocity (Vo), the y-intercept of the force-velocity relationship (Vmax), peak power per unit fiber length, and peak power normalized for fiber length and cross-sectional area were all inversely related to species body mass. The present allometric coefficients for soleus fiber Vo (-0.18) and Vmax (-0.11) are in good agreement with published values for soleus fibers obtained from common laboratory and domesticated mammals. Taken together, these observations suggest that the Vo of slow fibers from quadrupeds and humans scale similarly and can be described by the same quantitative relationships. These findings have implications in the design and interpretation of experiments, especially those that use small laboratory mammals as a model of human muscle function.

  10. Elevated blood pressure and enhanced myocardial contractility in mice with severe IGF-1 deficiency.

    PubMed Central

    Lembo, G; Rockman, H A; Hunter, J J; Steinmetz, H; Koch, W J; Ma, L; Prinz, M P; Ross, J; Chien, K R; Powell-Braxton, L

    1996-01-01

    To circumvent the embryonic lethality of a complete deficiency in insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), we generated mice homozygous for a site-specific insertional event that created a mutant IGF-1 allele (igf1m). These mice have IGF-1 levels 30% of wild type yet survive to adulthood, thereby allowing physiological analysis of the phenotype. Miniaturized catheterization technology revealed elevated conscious blood pressure in IGF-1(m/m) mice, and measurements of left ventricular contractility were increased. Adenylyl cyclase activity was enhanced in IGF-1(m/m) hearts, without an increase in beta-adrenergic receptor density, suggesting that crosstalk between IGF-1 and beta-adrenergic signaling pathways may mediate the increased contractility. The hypertrophic response of the left ventricular myocardium in response to aortic constriction, however, was preserved in IGF-1(m/m) mice. We conclude that chronic alterations in IGF-1 levels can selectively modulate blood pressure and left ventricular function, while not affecting adaptive myocardial hypertrophy in vivo. PMID:8958230

  11. Mechanistic insights into the anchorage of the contractile ring by anillin and Mid1

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Lingfei; Guan, Ruifang; Lee, I-Ju; Liu, Yajun; Chen, Mengran; Wang, Jiawei; Wu, Jian-Qiu; Chen, Zhucheng

    2015-01-01

    Anillins and Mid1 are scaffold proteins that play key roles in anchorage of the contractile ring at the cell equator during cytokinesis in animals and fungi, respectively. Here, we report crystal structures and functional analysis of human anillin and S. pombe Mid1. The combined data show anillin contains a cryptic C2 domain and a Rho-binding domain. Together with the tethering PH domain, three membrane-associating elements synergistically bind to RhoA and phospholipids to anchor anillin at the cleavage furrow. Surprisingly, Mid1 also binds to the membrane through a cryptic C2 domain. Dimerization of Mid1 leads to high affinity and preference for PI(4,5)P2, which stably anchors Mid1 at the division plane, bypassing the requirement for Rho GTPase. These findings uncover the unexpected general machinery and the divergent regulatory logics for the anchorage of the contractile ring through the anillin/Mid1 family proteins from yeast to humans. PMID:25959226

  12. Risk factors for gallbladder contractility after cholecystolithotomy in elderly high-risk surgical patients

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Tao; Luo, Hao; Yan, Hong-tao; Zhang, Guo-hu; Liu, Wei-hui; Tang, Li-jun

    2017-01-01

    Objective Cholecystolithiasis is a common disease in the elderly patient. The routine therapy is open or laparoscopic cholecystectomy. In the previous study, we designed a minimally invasive cholecystolithotomy based on percutaneous cholecystostomy combined with a choledochoscope (PCCLC) under local anesthesia. Methods To investigate the effect of PCCLC on the gallbladder contractility function, PCCLC and laparoscope combined with a choledochoscope were compared in this study. Results The preoperational age and American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) scores, as well as postoperational lithotrity rate and common biliary duct stone rate in the PCCLC group, were significantly higher than the choledochoscope group. However, the pre- and postoperational gallbladder ejection fraction was not significantly different. Univariable and multivariable logistic regression analyses indicated that the preoperational thickness of gallbladder wall (odds ratio [OR]: 0.540; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.317–0.920; P=0.023) and lithotrity (OR: 0.150; 95% CI: 0.023–0.965; P=0.046) were risk factors for postoperational gallbladder ejection fraction. The area under receiver operating characteristics curve was 0.714 (P=0.016; 95% CI: 0.553–0.854). Conclusion PCCLC strategy should be carried out cautiously. First, restricted by the diameter of the drainage tube, the PCCLC should be used only for small gallstones in high-risk surgical patients. Second, the usage of lithotrity should be strictly limited to avoid undermining the gallbladder contractility and increasing the risk of secondary common bile duct stones. PMID:28138229

  13. Improved cellular uptake of functionalized single-walled carbon nanotubes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Antonelli, A.; Serafini, S.; Menotta, M.; Sfara, C.; Pierigé, F.; Giorgi, L.; Ambrosi, G.; Rossi, L.; Magnani, M.

    2010-10-01

    Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) due to their unique structural and physicochemical properties, have been proposed as delivery systems for a variety of diagnostic and therapeutic agents. However, SWNTs have proven difficult to solubilize in aqueous solution, limiting their use in biological applications. In an attempt to improve SWNTs' solubility, biocompatibility, and to increase cell penetration we have thoroughly investigated the construction of carbon scaffolds coated with aliphatic carbon chains and phospholipids to obtain micelle-like structures. At first, oxidized SWNTs (2370 ± 30 nmol mg - 1 of SWNTs) were covalently coupled with an alcoholic chain (stearyl alcohol, C18H37OH; 816 nmol mg - 1 of SWNTs). Subsequently, SWNTs-COOC18H37 derivatives were coated with phosphatidylethanolamine (PE) or -serine (PS) phospholipids obtaining micelle-like structures. We found that cellular uptake of these constructs by phagocytic cells occurs via an endocytotic mechanism for constructs larger than 400 nm while occurs via diffusion through the cell membrane for constructs up to 400 nm. The material that enters the cell by phagocytosis is actively internalized by macrophages and localizes inside endocytotic vesicles. In contrast the material that enters the cells by diffusion is found in the cell cytosol. In conclusion, we have realized new biomimetic constructs based on alkylated SWNTs coated with phospholipids that are efficiently internalized by different cell types only if their size is lower than 400 nm. These constructs are not toxic to the cells and could now be explored as delivery systems for non-permeant cargoes.

  14. Functionally gradient hard carbon composites for improved adhesion and wear

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Narayan, Roger Jagdish

    A new approach is proposed for fabricating biomedical devices that last longer and are more biocompatible than those presently available. In this approach, a bulk material is chosen that has desirable mechanical properties (low modulus, high strength, high ductility and high fatigue strength). This material is coated with corrosion-resistant, wear-resistant, hard, and biocompatible hard carbon films. One of the many forms of carbon, tetrahedral amorphous carbon, consists mainly of sp3-bonded atoms. Tetrahedral amorphous carbon possesses properties close to diamond in terms of hardness, atomic smoothness, and inertness. Tetrahedral amorphous carbon and diamond films usually contain large amounts of compressive and sometimes tensile stresses; adhesive failure from these stresses has limited widespread use of these materials. This research involves processing, characterization and modeling of functionally gradient tetrahedral amorphous carbon and diamond composite films on metals (cobalt-chromium and titanium alloys) and polymers (polymethylmethacrylate and polyethylene) used in biomedical applications. Multilayer discontinuous thin films of titanium carbide, titanium nitride, aluminum nitride, and tungsten carbide have been developed to control stresses and graphitization in diamond films. A morphology of randomly interconnected micron sized diamond crystallites provides increased toughness and stress reduction. Internal stresses in tetrahedral amorphous carbon were reduced via incorporation of carbide forming elements (silicon and titanium) and noncarbide forming elements (copper, platinum, and silver). These materials were produced using a novel target design during pulsed laser deposition. These alloying atoms reduce hardness and sp3-bonded carbon content, but increase adhesion and wear resistance. Silver and platinum provide the films with antimicrobial properties, and silicon provides bioactivity and aids bone formation. Bilayer coatings were created that couple

  15. An Improved Green's Function for Ion Beam Transport

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tweed, J.; Wilson, J. W.; Tripathi, R. K.

    2003-01-01

    Ion beam transport theory allows testing of material transmission properties in the laboratory environment generated by particle accelerators. This is a necessary step in materials development and evaluation for space use. The approximations used in solving the Boltzmann transport equation for the space setting are often not sufficient for laboratory work and those issues are the main emphasis of the present work. In consequence, an analytic solution of the linear Boltzmann equation is pursued in the form of a Green's function allowing flexibility in application to a broad range of boundary value problems. It has been established that simple solutions can be found for the high charge and energy (HZE) by ignoring nuclear energy downshifts and dispersion. Such solutions were found to be supported by experimental evidence with HZE ion beams when multiple scattering was added. Lacking from the prior solutions were range and energy straggling and energy downshift with dispersion associated with nuclear events. Recently, we have found global solutions including these effects providing a broader class of HZE ion solutions.

  16. An improved Green's function for ion beam transport

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tweed, J.; Wilson, J. W.; Tripathi, R. K.

    2004-01-01

    Ion beam transport theory allows testing of material transmission properties in the laboratory environment generated by particle accelerators. This is a necessary step in materials development and evaluation for space use. The approximations used in solving the Boltzmann transport equation for the space setting are often not sufficient for laboratory work and those issues are the main emphasis of the present work. In consequence, an analytic solution of the linear Boltzmann equation is pursued in the form of a Green's function allowing flexibility in application to a broad range of boundary value problems. It has been established that simple solutions can be found for high charge and energy (HZE) ions by ignoring nuclear energy downshifts and dispersion. Such solutions were found to be supported by experimental evidence with HZE ion beams when multiple scattering was added. Lacking from the prior solutions were range and energy straggling and energy downshift with dispersion associated with nuclear events. Recently, we have found global solutions including these effects providing a broader class of HZE ion solutions. c2004 COSPAR. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Therapeutic intraspinal microstimulation improves forelimb function after cervical contusion injury

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kasten, M. R.; Sunshine, M. D.; Secrist, E. S.; Horner, P. J.; Moritz, C. T.

    2013-08-01

    Objective. Intraspinal microstimulation (ISMS) is a promising method for activating the spinal cord distal to an injury. The objectives of this study were to examine the ability of chronically implanted stimulating wires within the cervical spinal cord to (1) directly produce forelimb movements, and (2) assess whether ISMS stimulation could improve subsequent volitional control of paretic extremities following injury. Approach. We developed a technique for implanting intraspinal stimulating electrodes within the cervical spinal cord segments C6-T1 of Long-Evans rats. Beginning 4 weeks after a severe cervical contusion injury at C4-C5, animals in the treatment condition received therapeutic ISMS 7 hours/day, 5 days/week for the following 12 weeks. Main results. Over 12 weeks of therapeutic ISMS, stimulus-evoked forelimb movements were relatively stable. We also explored whether therapeutic ISMS promoted recovery of forelimb reaching movements. Animals receiving daily therapeutic ISMS performed significantly better than unstimulated animals during behavioural tests conducted without stimulation. Quantitative video analysis of forelimb movements showed that stimulated animals performed better in the movements reinforced by stimulation, including extending the elbow to advance the forelimb and opening the digits. While threshold current to elicit forelimb movement gradually increased over time, no differences were observed between chronically stimulated and unstimulated electrodes suggesting that no additional tissue damage was produced by the electrical stimulation. Significance. The results indicate that therapeutic intraspinal stimulation delivered via chronic microwire implants within the cervical spinal cord confers benefits extending beyond the period of stimulation, suggesting future strategies for neural devices to promote sustained recovery after injury.

  18. Are Interstitial Cells of Cajal Involved in Mechanical Stress-Induced Gene Expression and Impairment of Smooth Muscle Contractility in Bowel Obstruction?

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Chester C.; Lin, You-Min; Gao, Jerry; Winston, John H.; Cheng, Leo K.; Shi, Xuan-Zheng

    2013-01-01

    Background and Aims The network of interstitial cells of Cajal (ICC) is altered in obstructive bowel disorders (OBD). However, whether alteration in ICC network is a cause or consequence of OBD remains unknown. This study tested the hypothesis that mechanical dilation in obstruction disrupts the ICC network and that ICC do not mediate mechanotranscription of COX-2 and impairment of smooth muscle contractility in obstruction. Methods Medical-grade silicon bands were wrapped around the distal colon to induce partial obstruction in wild-type and ICC deficient (W/Wv) mice. Results In wild-type mice, colon obstruction led to time-dependent alterations of the ICC network in the proximal colon segment. Although unaffected on days 1 and 3, the ICC density decreased markedly and the network was disrupted on day 7 of obstruction. COX-2 expression increased, and circular muscle contractility decreased significantly in the segment proximal to obstruction. In W/Wv control mice, COX-2 mRNA level was 4.0 (±1.1)-fold higher (n=4) and circular muscle contractility was lower than in wild-type control mice. Obstruction further increased COX-2 mRNA level in W/Wv mice to 7.2 (±1.0)-fold vs. W/Wv controls [28.8 (±4.1)-fold vs. wild-type controls] on day 3. Obstruction further suppressed smooth muscle contractility in W/Wv mice. However, daily administration of COX-2 inhibitor NS-398 significantly improved muscle contractility in both W/Wv sham and obstruction mice. Conclusions Lumen dilation disrupts the ICC network. ICC deficiency has limited effect on stretch-induced expression of COX-2 and suppression of smooth muscle contractility in obstruction. Rather, stretch-induced COX-2 plays a critical role in motility dysfunction in partial colon obstruction. PMID:24098782

  19. [Cardiac contractility modulation. A new form of therapy for patients with heart failure and narrow QRS complex?].

    PubMed

    Kleemann, T

    2015-11-01

    Cardiac contractility modulation (CCM) is a stimulation therapy by an implantable impulse generator, which enhances ventricular contractile performance by delivering CCM impulses to the right ventricle during the absolute refractory period. The CCM signals mediate increased inotropy by prolonging the duration of the action potential, which leads to an enhanced influx of calcium into cardiomyocytes and a greater release of calcium by the sarcoplasmic reticulum. The increase of cardiac contractility is not associated with increased oxygen consumption. Several small studies have shown that CCM therapy can safely improve symptoms of heart failure and peak oxygen consumption in patients with moderate to severe heart failure who are not eligible for resynchronization therapy. Therefore, CCM is a novel potential therapy for patients with heart failure, an ejection fraction ≤ 35 % and a normal QRS duration < 130 ms. However, apart from selecting appropriate patients for CCM therapy there are still unanswered questions, such as the impact of CCM therapy on established clinical endpoints. At present no data are available which have shown that CCM therapy leads to reduction of hospitalization for heart failure or mortality.

  20. Optimal stimulus intensity and reliability of air stimulation technique for elicitation of laryngo-upper esophageal sphincter contractile reflex.

    PubMed

    Kawamura, Osamu; Easterling, Caryn; Rittmann, Tanya; Hofmann, Candy; Shaker, Reza

    2005-03-01

    To determine the optimal air stimulus intensity and duration for elicitation of the laryngo-upper esophageal sphincter (UES) contractile reflex, we studied 37 healthy volunteers 20 to 81 years of age. A sleeve device monitored the UES pressure. For laryngeal stimulation, we used an air stimulator unit (Pentax AP-4000) that incorporated a nasolaryngeal endoscope. The arytenoids and interarytenoid areas were stimulated at least three times by three different stimuli: 6-mm Hg air pulse with 50-ms duration, 10-mm Hg air pulse with 50-ms duration, and 6-mm Hg air pulse with 2-second duration. Of 1,165 air stimulations, 1,041 resulted in mucosal deflections. Of these, 451 resulted in an abrupt increase in UES pressure. The response/deflection ratio for 6-mm Hg stimulation with 2-second duration was significantly higher than those for air pulses with 50-ms duration (p < .001). We conclude that although the laryngo-UES contractile reflex can be elicited by an air pulse with 50-ms duration, this ultrashort stimulation is not reliable. Using longer-duration pulses (at least 2 seconds) improves the reliability of elicitation of the laryngo-UES contractile reflex.

  1. Contractile Units in Disordered Actomyosin Bundles Arise from F-Actin Buckling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lenz, Martin; Thoresen, Todd; Gardel, Margaret L.; Dinner, Aaron R.

    2012-06-01

    Bundles of filaments and motors are central to contractility in cells. The classic example is striated muscle, where actomyosin contractility is mediated by highly organized sarcomeres which act as fundamental contractile units. However, many contractile bundles in vivo and in vitro lack sarcomeric organization. Here we propose a model for how contractility can arise in bundles without sarcomeric organization and validate its predictions with experiments on a reconstituted system. In the model, internal stresses in frustrated arrangements of motors with diverse velocities cause filaments to buckle, leading to overall shortening. We describe the onset of buckling in the presence of stochastic motor head detachment and predict that buckling-induced contraction occurs in an intermediate range of motor densities. We then calculate the size of the “contractile units” associated with this process. Consistent with these results, our reconstituted actomyosin bundles show contraction at relatively high motor density, and we observe buckling at the predicted length scale.

  2. Improved ground-state electronic structure and optical dielectric constants with a semilocal exchange functional

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vlček, Vojtěch; Steinle-Neumann, Gerd; Leppert, Linn; Armiento, Rickard; Kümmel, Stephan

    2015-01-01

    A recently published generalized gradient approximation functional within density functional theory (DFT) has shown, in a few paradigm tests, an improved KS orbital description over standard (semi)local approximations. The characteristic feature of this functional is an enhancement factor that diverges like s ln(s ) for large reduced density gradients s which leads to unusual properties. We explore the improved orbital description of this functional more thoroughly by computing the electronic band structure, band gaps, and the optical dielectric constants in semiconductors, Mott insulators, and ionic crystals. Compared to standard semilocal functionals, we observe improvement in both the band gaps and the optical dielectric constants. In particular, the results are similar to those obtained with orbital functionals or by perturbation theory methods in that it opens band gaps in systems described as metallic by standard (semi)local density functionals, e.g., Ge, α -Sn, and CdO.

  3. The effects of space flight on the contractile apparatus of antigravity muscles: implications for aging and deconditioning

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baldwin, K. M.; Caiozzo, V. J.; Haddad, F.; Baker, M. J.; Herrick, R. E.

    1994-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that the unloading of skeletal muscle, as occurring during exposure to space flight, exerts a profound effect on both the mass (cross sectional area) of skeletal muscle fibers and the relative expression of protein isoforms comprising the contractile system. Available information suggests that slow (type I) fibers, comprising chiefly the antigravity muscles of experimental animals, in addition to atrophying, undergo alterations in the type of myosin heavy chain (MHC) expressed such that faster isoforms become concomitantly expressed in a sub-population of slow fibers when insufficient force-bearing activity is maintained on the muscle. Consequently, these transformations in both mass and myosin heavy chain phenotype could exert a significant impact on the functional properties of skeletal muscle as manifest in the strength, contractile speed, and endurance scope of the muscle. To further explore these issues, a study was performed in which young adult male rats were exposed to zero gravity for six days, following which, the antigravity soleus muscle was examined for a) contractile properties, determined in situ and b) isomyosin expression, as studied using biochemical, molecular biology, and histochemical/immunohistochemical techniques.

  4. The effects of space flight on the contractile apparatus of antigravity muscles: implications for aging and deconditioning.

    PubMed

    Baldwin, K M; Caiozzo, V J; Haddad, F; Baker, M J; Herrick, R E

    1994-05-01

    Previous studies have shown that the unloading of skeletal muscle, as occurring during exposure to space flight, exerts a profound effect on both the mass (cross sectional area) of skeletal muscle fibers and the relative expression of protein isoforms comprising the contractile system. Available information suggests that slow (type I) fibers, comprising chiefly the antigravity muscles of experimental animals, in addition to atrophying, undergo alterations in the type of myosin heavy chain (MHC) expressed such that faster isoforms become concomitantly expressed in a sub-population of slow fibers when insufficient force-bearing activity is maintained on the muscle. Consequently, these transformations in both mass and myosin heavy chain phenotype could exert a significant impact on the functional properties of skeletal muscle as manifest in the strength, contractile speed, and endurance scope of the muscle. To further explore these issues, a study was performed in which young adult male rats were exposed to zero gravity for six days, following which, the antigravity soleus muscle was examined for a) contractile properties, determined in situ and b) isomyosin expression, as studied using biochemical, molecular biology, and histochemical/immunohistochemical techniques.

  5. Loss of smooth muscle cell hypoxia inducible factor-1α underlies increased vascular contractility in pulmonary hypertension.

    PubMed

    Barnes, Elizabeth A; Chen, Chih-Hsin; Sedan, Oshra; Cornfield, David N

    2017-02-01

    Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is an often fatal disease with limited treatment options. Whereas current data support the notion that, in pulmonary artery endothelial cells (PAECs), expression of transcription factor hypoxia inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α) is increased, the role of HIF-1α in pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells (PASMCs) remains controversial. This study investigates the hypothesis that, in PASMCs from patients with PAH, decreases in HIF-1α expression and activity underlie augmented pulmonary vascular contractility. PASMCs and tissues were isolated from nonhypertensive control patients and patients with PAH. Compared with controls, HIF-1α and Kv1.5 protein expression were decreased in PAH smooth muscle cells (primary culture). Myosin light chain (MLC) phosphorylation and MLC kinase (MLCK) activity-major determinants of vascular tone-were increased in patients with PAH. Cofactors involved in prolyl hydroxylase domain activity were increased in PAH smooth muscle cells. Functionally, PASMC contractility was inversely correlated with HIF-1α activity. In PASMCs derived from patients with PAH, HIF-1α expression is decreased, and MLCK activity, MLC phosphorylation, and cell contraction are increased. We conclude that compromised PASMC HIF-1α expression may contribute to the increased tone that characterizes pulmonary hypertension.-Barnes, E. A., Chen, C.-H., Sedan, O., Cornfield, D. N. Loss of smooth muscle cell hypoxia inducible factor-1α underlies increased vascular contractility in pulmonary hypertension.

  6. Cyclic Mechanical Stress and Trabecular Meshwork Cell Contractility

    PubMed Central

    Ramos, Renata F.; Sumida, Grant M.; Stamer, W. Daniel

    2009-01-01

    Purpose Ocular pulse decreases outflow facility of perfused anterior segments. However, the mechanism by which conventional outflow tissues respond to cyclic intraocular pressure oscillations is unknown. The purpose of the present study was to examine responses of trabecular meshwork (TM) cells to cyclic biomechanical stress in the presence and absence of compounds known to affect cell contractility. Methods To model flow in the juxtacanalicular region of the TM and to measure changes in transendothelial flow, human TM cell monolayers on permeable filters were perfused at a constant flow rate until reaching a stable baseline pressure and then were exposed to cyclic stress with an average amplitude of 2.7 mm Hg peak to peak at a 1-Hz frequency for 2 hours in the presence or absence of compounds known to affect cell contractility (isoproterenol, Y27632, pilocarpine, and nifedipine). Pressure was recorded continuously. Immunocytochemistry staining was used to determine filamentous actin stress fiber content, whereas Western blot analysis was used to measure the extent of myosin light chain (p-MLC) phosphorylation and ratio of filamentous to globular actin. Results Human TM cells respond to cyclic pressure oscillations by increasing mean intrachamber pressure (decreasing hydraulic conductivity) (126.13% ± 2.4%; P < 0.05), a response blocked in the presence of Y27632, a rho-kinase inhibitor (101.35 ± 0.59; P = 0.234), but not isoproterenol, pilocarpine, or nifedipine. Although mechanical stress appeared to have no effect, Y27632 decreased phosphorylated myosin light chain, filamentous/globular actin ratio, and stress fiber formation in TM cells. Conclusions Human TM cells respond to cyclic mechanical stress by increasing intrachamber pressure. Pulse-mediated effects are blocked by Y27632, implicating a role for Rho-kinase-mediated signaling and cellular contractility in ocular pulse-associated changes in outflow facility. PMID:19339745

  7. High-throughput screening for modulators of cellular contractile force†

    PubMed Central

    Park, Chan Young; Zhou, Enhua H.; Tambe, Dhananjay; Chen, Bohao; Lavoie, Tera; Dowell, Maria; Simeonov, Anton; Maloney, David J.; Marinkovic, Aleksandar; Tschumperlin, Daniel J.; Burger, Stephanie; Frykenberg, Matthew; Butler, James P.; Stamer, W. Daniel; Johnson, Mark; Solway, Julian; Fredberg, Jeffrey J.

    2015-01-01

    When cellular contractile forces are central to pathophysiology, these forces comprise a logical target of therapy. Nevertheless, existing high-throughput screens are limited to upstream signalling intermediates with poorly defined relationships to such a physiological endpoint. Using cellular force as the target, here we report a new screening technology and demonstrate its applications using human airway smooth muscle cells in the context of asthma and Schlemm's canal endothelial cells in the context of glaucoma. This approach identified several drug candidates for both asthma and glaucoma. We attained rates of 1000 compounds per screening day, thus establishing a force-based cellular platform for high-throughput drug discovery. PMID:25953078

  8. The role of cyclic nucleotides in guinea-pig bladder contractility

    PubMed Cen