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Journal Cover Pharmacological Research
  [SJR: 2.108]   [H-I: 99]   [2 followers]  Follow
    
   Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
   ISSN (Print) 1043-6618 - ISSN (Online) 1096-1186
   Published by Elsevier Homepage  [3039 journals]
  • Medication Use and Survival in Diabetic Patients with Kidney Cancer: A
           Population-based Cohort Study
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 24 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Madhur Nayan, Erin M. Macdonald, David N. Juurlink, Peter C. Austin, Antonio Finelli, Girish S. Kulkarni, Robert J. Hamilton
      Survival rates in kidney cancer have improved little over time, and diabetes may be an independent risk factor for poor survival in kidney cancer. We sought to determine whether medications with putative anti-neoplastic properties (statins, metformin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)) are associated with survival in diabetics with kidney cancer. We conducted a population-based cohort study utilizing linked healthcare databases in Ontario, Canada. Patients were aged 66 or older with newly diagnosed diabetes and a subsequent diagnosis of incident kidney cancer. Receipt of metformin, statins or NSAIDs was defined using prescription claims. The primary outcome was all-cause mortality and the secondary outcome was cancer-specific mortality. We used multivariable Cox proportional hazard regression, with medication use modeled with time-varying and cumulative exposure analyses to account for intermittent use. During the 14-year study period, we studied 613 patients. Current statin use was associated with a markedly reduced risk of death from any cause (adjusted hazard ratio 0.74; 95% CI 0.59 to 0.91) and death due to kidney cancer (adjusted hazard ratio 0.71; 95% CI 0.51 to 0.97). However, survival was not associated with current use of metformin or NSAIDs, or cumulative exposure to any of the medications studied. Among diabetic patients with kidney cancer, survival outcomes are associated with active statin use, rather than total cumulative use. These findings support the use of randomized trials to confirm whether diabetics with kidney cancer should be started on a statin at the time of cancer diagnosis to improve survival outcomes.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-25T13:18:22Z
       
  • NOVEL CELECOXIB ANALOGUES INHIBIT GLIAL PRODUCTION OF PROSTAGLANDIN E2,
           NITRIC OXIDE, AND OXYGEN RADICALS REVERTING THE NEUROINFLAMMATORY
           RESPONSES INDUCED BY MISFOLDED PRION PROTEIN FRAGMENT 90-231 OR
           LIPOPOLYSACCHARIDE
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 22 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Valentina Villa, Stefano Thellung, Adriana Bajetto, Elena Gatta, Mauro Robello, Federica Novelli, Bruno Tasso, Michele Tonelli, Tullio Florio
      We tested the efficacy of novel cyclooxygenase 2 (COX-2) inhibitors in counteracting glia-driven neuroinflammation induced by the amyloidogenic prion protein fragment PrP90-231 or lipopolysaccharide (LPS). In search for molecules with higher efficacy than celecoxib, we focused our study on its 2,3-diaryl-1,3-thiazolidin-4-one analogues. As experimental models, we used the immortalized microglial cell line N9, rat purified microglial primary cultures, and mixed cultures of astrocytes and microglia. Microglia activation in response to PrP90-231 or LPS was characterized by growth arrest, morphology changes and the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Moreover, PrP90-231 treatment caused the overexpression of the inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and COX-2, with the consequent nitric oxide (NO), and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) accumulation. These effects were challenged by different celecoxib analogues, among which Q22 (3-[4-(sulfamoyl)phenyl]-2-(4-tolyl)thiazolidin-4-one) inhibited microglia activation more efficiently than celecoxib, lowering both iNOS and COX-2 activity and reducing ROS release. During neurodegenerative diseases, neuroinflammation induced by amyloidogenic peptides causes the activation of both astrocytes and microglia with these cell populations mutually regulating each other. Thus the effects of PrP90-231 and LPS were also studied on mixed glial cultures containing astrocytes and microglia. PrP90-231 treatment elicited different responses in the co-cultures induced astrocyte proliferation and microglia growth arrest, resulting in a differential ability to release proinflammatory molecules with the production of NO and ROS mainly attributable on microglia, while COX-2 expression was induced also in astrocytes. Q22 effects on both NO and PGE2 secretion were more significant in the mixed glial cultures than in purified microglia, demonstrating Q22 ability to revert the functional interaction between these cell types. These results demonstrate that Q22 is a powerful drug able to revert glial neuroinflammatory responses and might represent a lead to explore the chemical space around celecoxib frameworks to design even more effective agents, paving the way to novel approaches to contrast the neuroinflammation-dependent toxicity.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-25T13:18:22Z
       
  • Calycosin suppresses expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines via the
           activation of p62/Nrf2-linked heme oxygenase 1 in rheumatoid arthritis
           synovial fibroblasts
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 24 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Xiaohui Su, Qingchun Huang, Jianyu Chen, Maojie Wang, Hudan Pan, Rui Wang, Hua Zhou, Zhanqing Zhou, Juan Liu, Fen Yang, Ting Li, Liang Liu
      The activation of synovial fibroblasts (SFs) and the subsequent production and expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines play a crucial role in the pathogenesis and progression of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). In the current study, rheumatoid arthritis synovial fibroblasts (RASFs) isolated from the joint of the patients were used to evaluate the suppressive effects of calycosin (CAL), a compound derived from the Chinese medicinal herb Radix Astragali, on the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines in RASFs. The results demonstrated that increased mRNA expression levels of interleukin-1β (IL-1β), interleukin-6 (IL-6), interleukin-8 (IL-8), interleukin-25 (IL-25), interleukin-33(IL-33) were significantly inhibited by CAL. Furthermore, the compound obviously suppressed IL-6 and IL-33 secretion. The key inflammatory mediator, cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) was significantly attenuated by CAL. A mechanistic study showed that the antioxidant enzymes heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) and NAD(P)H dehydrogenase quinone 1(NQO1) and Nrf2 of RASFs were markedly activated by CAL. Furthermore, CAL potentiated the accumulation of sequestosome 1 (SQSTM1, p62) and the degradation of Kelch-like ECH-associated protein 1 (Keap1), thereby inducing Nrf2 translocation from the cytoplasm to the nucleus. Thus, CAL suppresses the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines via p62/Nrf2-linked HO-1 induction in RASFs, which suggests that the compound should be further investigated as a candidate anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritis agent.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-25T13:18:22Z
       
  • Radiation Protective Effects of Baclofen Predicted by a Computational Drug
           Repurposing Strategy
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 21 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Lei Ren, Dafei Xie, Peng Li, Xinyan Qu, Xiujuan Zhang, Yaling Xing, Pingkun Zhou, Xiaochen Bo, Zhe Zhou, Shengqi Wang
      Exposure to ionizing radiation causes damage to living tissues; however, only a small number of agents have been approved for use in radiation injuries. Radioprotector is the primary countermeasure to radiation injury and none radioprotector has indeed reached the drug development stage. Repurposing the long list of approved, non-radioprotective drugs is an attractive strategy to find new radioprotective agents. Here, we applied a computational approach to discover new radioprotectors in silico by comparing publicly available gene expression data of ionizing radiation-treated samples from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) database with gene expression signatures of more than 1,309 small-molecule compounds from the Connectivity Map (cmap) dataset. Among the best compounds predicted to be therapeutic for ionizing radiation damage by this approach were some previously reported radioprotectors and baclofen (P<0.01), a chemical that was not previously used as radioprotector. Validation using a cell-based model and a rodent in vivo model demonstrated that treatment with baclofen reduced radiation-induced cytotoxicity in vitro (P<0.01), attenuated bone marrow damage and increased survival in vivo (P<0.05). These findings suggest that baclofen might serve as a radioprotector. The drug repurposing strategy by connecting the GEO data and cmap can be used to identify known drugs as potential radioprotective agents.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-25T13:18:22Z
       
  • Novel α-substituted tropolones promote potent and selective
           caspase-dependent leukemia cell apoptosis
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 20 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Jin Li, Eric R. Falcone, Sarah A. Holstein, Amy C. Anderson, Dennis L. Wright, Andrew J. Wiemer
      Tropolones, such as β-thujaplicin, are small lead-like natural products that possess a variety of biological activities. While the β-substituted natural products and their synthetic analogs are potent inhibitors of human cancer cell growth, less is known about their α-substituted counterparts. Recently, we synthesized a series of α-substituted tropolones including 2-hydroxy-7-(naphthalen-2-yl)cyclohepta-2,4,6-trien-1-one (α-naphthyl tropolone). Here, we evaluate the antiproliferative mechanisms of α-naphthyl tropolone and the related α-benzodioxinyl analog. The α-substituted tropolones inhibit growth of lymphocytic leukemia cells, but not healthy blood cells, with nanomolar potency. Treatment of leukemia cell lines with the tropolone dose-dependently induces apoptosis as judged by staining with annexin V and propidium iodide and Western blot analysis of cleaved caspase 3 and 7. Moreover, pre-treatment of cells with the caspase inhibitor Z-VAD-FMK inhibited the apoptotic effects of the tropolone in two lymphocytic lines. Caspase inhibition also blocked elevated histone acetylation caused by the tropolone, indicating that its effects on histone acetylation are potentiated by caspases. In contrast, α-naphthyl tropolone upregulated p53 expression and phosphorylation of Akt and mTOR in a manner that was not rescued by caspase inhibition. The effects of tropolone were blocked by co-incubation with high levels of free extracellular iron but not by pre-loading with iron. Additionally, dose and time dependent reduction in ex vivo viability of cells from leukemia patients was observed. Taken together, we demonstrate that α-substituted tropolones upregulate DNA damage repair pathways leading to caspase-dependent apoptosis in malignant lymphocytes.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-21T13:14:42Z
       
  • Increasing spinal 5-HT2A receptor responsiveness mediates anti-allodynic
           effect and potentiates Fluoxetine efficacy in neuropathic rats. Evidence
           for GABA release
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 20 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Amandine Dupuis, Anne-Sophie Wattiez, Jérémy Pinguet, Damien Richard, Frédéric Libert, Maryse Chalus, Youssef Aissouni, Benoit Sion, Denis Ardid, Philippe Marin, Alain Eschalier, Christine Courteix
      Antidepressants are one of the first line treatments for neuropathic pain but their use is limited by the incidence and severity of side effects of tricyclics and the weak effectiveness of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Serotonin type 2A (5-HT2A) receptors interact with PDZ proteins that regulate their functionality and SSRI efficacy to alleviate pain. We investigated whether an interfering peptide (TAT-2ASCV) disrupting the interaction between 5‐HT2A receptors and associated PDZ proteins would improve the treatment of traumatic neuropathic allodynia. Tactile allodynia was assessed in spinal nerve ligation-induced neuropathic pain in rats using von Frey filaments after acute treatment with TAT-2ASCV and/or 5‐HT2A receptor agonist, alone or in combination with repeated treatment with fluoxetine. In vivo microdialysis was performed in order to examine the involvement of GABA in TAT‐2ASCV/fluoxetine treatment-associated analgesia. TAT-2ASCV (100ng, single i.t. injection) improved SNL-induced tactile allodynia by increasing 5-HT2A receptor responsiveness to endogenous 5-HT. Fluoxetine alone (10mg/kg, five i.p. injections) slightly increased tactile thresholds and its co-administration with TAT-2ASCV (100ng, single i.t. injection) further enhanced the anti-allodynic effect. This effect depends on the integrity of descending serotonergic bulbospinal pathways and spinal release of GABA. The anti-allodynic effect of fluoxetine can be enhanced by disrupting 5‐HT2A receptor-PDZ protein interactions. This enhancement depends on 5-HT2A receptor activation, spinal GABA release and GABAA receptor activation.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-21T13:14:42Z
       
  • Bisphenol A induces hypothalamic down-regulation of the the cannabinoid
           receptor 1 and anorexigenic effects in male mice
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Antonio Suglia, Rosanna Chianese, Marina Migliaccio, Concetta Ambrosino, Silvia Fasano, Riccardo Pierantoni, Gilda Cobellis, Teresa Chioccarelli
      Bisphenol A is an environment-polluting industrial chemical able to interfere with the endocrine system. An obesogenic effect in perinatally exposed rodents has been described as estrogenic activity. We exposed male mice to Bisphenol A during fetal-perinatal period (from 10 days post coitum to 31 days post partum) and investigated the effects of this early-life exposure at 78 days of age. Body weight, food intake, fat mass, and hypothalamic signals related to anorexigenic control of food intake were analyzed. Results show that Bisphenol A exposure reduced body weight and food intake. In addition, the exposure decreased epididymal fat mass and adiposity, acting negatively on adipocyte volume. At hypothalamic level, Bisphenol A exposure reduced the expression of the cannabinoid receptor 1 and induced gene expression of cocaine and amphetamine-regulated transcript-1. This observation suggests that Bisphenol A induces activation of anorexigenic signals via down-regulation of the hypothalamic cannabinoid receptor 1 with negative impact on food intake.


      PubDate: 2016-09-21T13:14:42Z
       
  • Ibrutinib inhibition of Bruton protein-tyrosine kinase (BTK) in the
           treatment of B cell neoplasms
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 15 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Robert Roskoski
      The Bruton non-receptor protein-tyrosine kinase (BTK), a deficiency of which leads to X-linked agammaglobulinemia, plays a central role in B cell antigen receptor signaling. Owing to the exclusivity of this enzyme in B cells, the acronym could represent B cell tyrosine kinase. BTK is activated by the Lyn and SYK protein kinases following activation of the B cell receptor. BTK in turn catalyzes the phosphorylation and activation of phospholipase Cγ2 leading to the downstream activation of the Ras/RAF/MEK/ERK pathway and the NF-κB pathways. Both pathways participate in the maturation of antibody-producing B cells. The BTK domains include a PH (pleckstrin homology) domain that interacts with membrane-associated phosphatidyl inositol trisphosphate, a TH (TEC homology) domain, which is followed by an SH3, SH2, and finally a protein kinase domain. Dysregulation of B cell receptor signaling occurs in several B cell neoplasms including mantle cell lymphoma, chronic lymphocytic leukemia, and Waldenström macroglobulinemia. Ibrutinib is FDA-approved as first-line or second line treatment for these diseases. The drug binds tightly in the ATP-binding pocket of BTK making salt bridges with residues within the hinge that connects the two lobes of the enzyme; then its unsaturated acrylamide group forms a covalent bond with BTK cysteine 481 to form an inactive adduct. In addition to the treatment of various B cell lymphomas, ibrutinib is under clinical trials for the treatment of numerous solid tumors owing to the role of tumor-promoting inflammation in the pathogenesis of neoplastic diseases.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-21T13:14:42Z
       
  • H2S dependent and independent anti-inflammatory activity of zofenoprilat
           in cells of the vascular wall
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 17 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Martina Monti, Erika Terzuoli, Marina Ziche, Lucia Morbidelli
      Cardiovascular diseases as atherosclerosis are associated to an inflammatory state of the vessel wall which is accompanied by endothelial dysfunction, and adherence and activation of circulating inflammatory cells. Hydrogen sulfide, a novel cardiovascular protective gaseous mediator, has been reported to exert anti-inflammatory activity. We have recently demonstrated that the SH containing ACE inhibitor zofenoprilat, the active metabolite of zofenopril, controls the angiogenic features of vascular endothelium through H2S enzymatic production by cystathionine gamma lyase (CSE). Based on H2S donor/generator property of zofenoprilat, the objective of this study was to evaluate whether zofenoprilat exerts anti-inflammatory activity in vascular cells through its ability to increase H2S availability. Here we found that zofenoprilat, in a CSE/H2S-mediated manner, abolished all the inflammatory features induced by interlukin-1beta (IL-1β) in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC), especially the NF-κB/cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2)/prostanoid biochemical pathway. The pre-incubation with zofenoprilat/CSE dependent H2S prevented IL-1β induced paracellular hyperpermeability through the control of expression and localization of cell-cell junctional markers ZO-1 and VE-cadherin. Moreover, zofenoprilat/CSE dependent H2S reduced the expression of the endothelial markers CD40 and CD31, involved in the recruitment of circulating mononuclear cells and platelets. Interestingly, this anti-inflammatory activity was also confirmed in vascular smooth muscle cells and fibroblasts as zofenoprilat reduced, in both cell lines, proliferation, migration and COX-2 expression induced by IL-1β, but independently from the SH moiety and H2S availability. These in vitro data document the anti-inflammatory activity of zofenoprilat on vascular cells, reinforcing the cardiovascular protective effect of this multitasking drug.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-21T13:14:42Z
       
  • Natural products from aquatic eukaryotic microorganisms for cancer
           therapy: perspectives on anti-tumour properties of ciliate bioactive
           molecules
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 17 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Elisabetta Catalani, Francesca Proietti Serafini, Silvia Zecchini, Simona Picchietti, Anna Maria Fausto, Enrico Marcantoni, Federico Buonanno, Claudio Ortenzi, Cristiana Perrotta, Davide Cervia
      Several modern drugs, including those for cancer therapy, have been isolated from natural sources, are based on natural products and its derivatives, or mime natural products. Some of them are in clinical use, others in clinical trials. The success of natural products in drug discovery is related to their biochemical characteristics and to the technologic methods used to study their feature. Natural compounds may acts as chemo-preventive agents and as factors that increase therapeutic efficacy of existing drugs, thus overcoming cancer cell drug resistance that is the main factor determining the failure in conventional chemotherapy. Water environment, because of its physical and chemical conditions, shows an extraordinary collection of natural biological substances with an extensive structural and functional diversity. The isolation of bioactive molecules has been reported from a great variety of aquatic organisms; however, the therapeutic application of molecules from eukaryotic microorganisms remains inadequately investigated and underexploited on a systematic basis. Herein we describe the biological activities in mammalian cells of selected substances isolated from ciliates, free-living protozoa common almost everywhere there is water, focusing on their anti-tumour actions and their possible therapeutic activity. In particular, we unveil the cellular and molecular machine mediating the effects of cell type-specific signalling protein pheromone Er-1 and secondary metabolites, i.e. euplotin C and climacostol, in cancer cells. To support the feasibility of climacostol-based approaches, we also present novel findings and report additional mechanisms of action using both in vitro and in vivo models of mouse melanomas, with the scope of highlighting new frontiers that can be explored also in a therapeutic perspective. The high skeletal chemical difference of ciliate compounds, their sustainability and availability, also through the use of new organic synthesis/modifications processes, and the results obtained so far in biological studies provide a rationale to consider some of them a potential resource for the design of new anti-cancer drugs.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-21T13:14:42Z
       
  • Pharmacological modulation in mesial temporal lobe epilepsy: current
           status and future perspectives
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 19 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Antonio Gambardella, Angelo Labate, Pierangelo Cifelli, Gabriele Ruffolo, Laura Mumoli, Eleonora Aronica, Eleonora Palma
      Mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (MTLE) is frequently associated with hippocampal sclerosis (Hs), possibly caused by a primary brain injury that occurred a long time before the appearance of neurological symptoms. MTLE-Hs is, however, a heterogeneous condition that evolves with time, involving both environmental and genetic components. Recent experimental studies emphasize that drugs or drug combinations that target modulation and circuitry reorganization of the epileptogenic networks favorably modify the complex molecular and cellular alterations underlying MTLE. In particular, the link between neuroinflammation, GABAAR and epilepsy has been extensively studied mainly because of the relevant therapeutic implications that the pharmacological modulation of these phenomena would have in the clinical practice. In this review, we briefly summarize the studies that could pave the road to develop new disease-modifying therapeutic strategies for pharmacoresistant MTLE patients. Both clinical observations in human MTLE and experimental findings will be discussed, highlighting the potential modulatory crosstalk between the deregulation of the inhibitory (GABAergic) transmission and the sustained activation of the innate immune response.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-21T13:14:42Z
       
  • Managing epilepsy in the third millenium: Recent achievements and future
           perspectives
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Giovambattista De Sarro



      PubDate: 2016-09-21T13:14:42Z
       
  • Nitrosopersulfide (SSNO−) targets the Keap-1/Nrf2 redox system
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 20 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Dr. Miriam M. Cortese-Krott, David Pullmann, Prof. Martin Feelisch
      Nitric oxide (NO), hydrogen sulfide and polysulfides have been proposed to contribute to redox signaling by activating the Keap-1/Nrf2 stress response system. Nitrosopersulfide (SSNO−) recently emerged as a bioactive product of the chemical interaction of NO or nitrosothiols with sulfide; upon decomposition it generates polysulfides and free NO, triggering the activation of soluble guanylate cyclase, inducing blood vessel relaxation in vitro and lowering blood pressure in vivo. Whether SSNO− itself interacts with the Keap-1/Nrf2 system is unknown. We therefore sought to investigate the ability of SSNO− to activate Nrf2-dependent processes in human vascular endothelial cells, and to compare the pharmacological effects of SSNO− with those of its precursors NO and sulfide at multiple levels of target engagement. We here demonstrate that SSNO− strongly increases Nrf2 nuclear levels, Nrf2-binding activity and transactivation activity, thereby increasing mRNA expression of Hmox-1, the gene encoding for heme oxygenase 1, without adversely affecting cell viability. Under all conditions, SSNO− appeared to be more potent than its parent compounds, NO and sulfide. SSNO−-induced Nrf2 transactivation activity was abrogated by either NO scavenging with cPTIO or inhibition of thiol sulfuration by high concentrations of cysteine, implying a role for both persulfides/polysulfides and NO in SSNO− mediated Nrf2 activation. Taken together, our studies demonstrate that the Keap-1/Nrf2 redox system is a biological target of SSNO−, enriching the portfolio of bioactivity of this vasoactive molecule to also engage in the regulation of redox signaling processes. The latter suggests a possible role as messenger and/or mediator in cellular sensing and adaptations processes.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-21T13:14:42Z
       
  • Autoimmune therapeutic chloroquine lowers blood pressure and improves
           endothelial function in spontaneously hypertensive rats
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 14 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Cameron G. McCarthy, Camilla F. Wenceslau, Styliani Goulopoulou, Safia Ogbi, Takayuki Matsumoto, R.Clinton Webb
      It has been suggested that hypertension results from a loss of immunological tolerance and the resulting autoimmunity may be an important underlying factor of its pathogenesis. This stems from the observations that many of the features involved in autoimmunity are also implicated in hypertension. Furthermore, the underlying presence of hypertension and cardiovascular disease are frequently observed in patients with autoimmune diseases. Antimalarial agents such as chloroquine are generally among the first line treatment options for patients with autoimmune diseases; however, whether they can improve a hypertensive phenotype in a genetic model of essential hypertension remains to be clarified. Therefore, we hypothesized that chloroquine treatment would improve endothelial function and lower blood pressure in spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR). We treated adult SHR and Wistar-Kyoto rats (12 weeks old), as well as a group of young SHR (5 weeks old), with chloroquine (40mg/kg/day via intraperitoneal injection) for 21 days. Chloroquine lowered blood pressure in adult SHR, but did not impede the development of high blood pressure in young SHR. In isolated mesenteric resistance arteries from SHR of both ages, chloroquine treatment inhibited cyclooxygenase-dependent contraction to acetylcholine, lowered vascular and systemic generation of reactive oxygen species, and improved nitric oxide bioavailability. Overall, these data reveal the anti-hypertensive mechanisms of chloroquine in the vasculature, which may be important for lowering risk of cardiovascular disease in patients with autoimmune diseases. Furthermore, it adds to the growing body of evidence suggesting that autoimmunity underlies hypertension.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-15T12:38:30Z
       
  • Graduate Education in Pharmacology: Addressing the need for specialized
           training for pharmaceutical and biotechnology careers
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): James E. Barrett, Paul McGonigle, Janet E. Clark



      PubDate: 2016-09-15T12:38:30Z
       
  • Both the H2S biosynthesis inhibitor aminooxyacetic acid and the
           mitochondrially targeted H2S donor AP39 exert protective effects in a
           mouse model of burn injury
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 14 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Akbar Ahmad, Csaba Szabo
      Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) exerts beneficial as well as deleterious effects in various models of critical illness. Here we tested the effect of two different pharmacological interventions: (a) inhibition of H2S biosynthesis using the cystathionine-beta-synthase (CBS)/cystathionine-gamma-lyase (CSE) inhibitor aminooxyacetic acid (AOAA) and the mitochondrially targeted H2S donor [10-oxo-10-[4-(3-thioxo-3H-1,2-dithiol-5-yl)phenoxy]decyl]triphenyl-phosphonium (AP39). A 30% body surface area burn injury was induced in anesthetized mice; animals were treated with vehicle, AOAA (10mg/kg i.p. once or once a day for 6 days), or AP39 (0.3mg/kg/day once or once a day for 6 days). In two separate groups, animals were sacrificed, at 24hours post-burn or on Day 7 post-burn, blood and lungs were collected and the following parameters were evaluated: myeloperoxidase (MPO) and malondialdehyde (MDA) in lung homogenates, plasma cytokines (Luminex analysis) and circulating indicators of organ dysfunction (Vetscan analysis). Lung MPO levels (an index of neutrophil infiltration) and MDA levels (an index of oxidative stress) were significantly increased in response to burn injury both at 24hours and at 7 days; both AOAA and AP39 attenuated these increases. From a panel of inflammatory cytokines (TNFα, IL-1β, IL-6, IL-10, MCP-1, MIP-2, VEGF and IFNγ) in the plasma, IL-6 and IL-10 levels were markedly elevated at 24hours and VEGF was slightly elevated. IL-6 remained highly elevated at 7days post-burn while IL-10 levels decreased, but remained slightly elevated over baseline 7days post-burn. The changes in cytokine levels were attenuated both by AP39 and AOAA at both time points studied. The burn-induced increases in the organ injury markers ALP and ALT, amylase and creatinine were reduced by both AOAA and AP39. We conclude that both H2S biosynthesis inhibition (using AOAA) and H2S donation (using AP39) suppresses inflammatory mediator production and reduces multi-organ injury in a murine model of burn injury, both at an early time point (when systemic H2S levels are elevated) and at a later time point (at which time systemic H2S levels have returned to baseline). These findings point to the complex pathogenetic role of H2S in burns.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-15T12:38:30Z
       
  • The endocannabinoid anandamide causes endothelium-dependent vasorelaxation
           in human mesenteric arteries
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 12 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Christopher P. Stanley, William H. Hind, Christina Tufarelli, Saoirse E. O’sullivan
      The endocannabinoid anandamide (AEA) causes vasorelaxation in animal studies. Although circulating AEA levels are increased in many pathologies, little is known about its vascular effects in humans. The aim of this work was to characterise the effects of AEA in human arteries. Ethical approval was granted to obtain mesenteric arteries from patients (n=31) undergoing bowel resection. Wire myography was used to probe the effects and mechanisms of action of AEA. RT‐PCR was used to confirm the presence of receptor mRNA in human aortic endothelial cells (HAECs) and intracellular signalling proteins were measured using multiplex technology. AEA caused vasorelaxation of precontracted human mesenteric arteries with an Rmax of ∼30%. A synthetic CB1 agonist (CP55940) caused greater vasorelaxation (Rmax ∼60%) while a CB2 receptor agonist (HU308) had no effect on vascular tone. AEA-induced vasorelaxation was inhibited by removing the endothelium, inhibition of nitric oxide (NO) synthase, antagonising the CB1 receptor and antagonising the proposed novel endothelial cannabinoid receptor (CBe). AEA‐induced vasorelaxation was not affected by CB2 antagonism, by depleting sensory neurotransmitters, or inhibiting cyclooxygenase activity. RT‐PCR showed CB1 but not CB2 receptors were present in HAECs, and AEA and CP55940 had similar profiles in HAECs (increased phosphorylation of JNK, NFκB, ERK, Akt, p70s6K, STAT3 and STAT5). Post hoc analysis of the data set showed that overweight patients and those taking paracetamol had reduced vasorelaxant responses to AEA. These data show that AEA causes moderate endothelium-dependent, NO-dependent vasorelaxation in human mesenteric arteries via activation of CB1 receptors.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-15T12:38:30Z
       
  • DLL4+ Dendritic Cells: Key Regulators of Notch Signaling in Effector T
           Cell Responses
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 14 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Lijun Meng, Shaoyan Hu, Jian Wang, Shan He, Yi Zhang
      Dendritic cells (DCs) are critical regulators of adaptive immune responses. DCs can elicit primary T cell responses at low DC:T cell ratios through their expression of high levels of antigen-presenting molecules and costimulatory molecules. DCs are important for induction of functionally diverse T cell subsets such as CD4+ T helper (Th)1 and Th17 cells and effector CD8+ T cells able to reside in epithelial tissues. Recent studies begin illuminating the underlying mechanism by which DCs regulate specialized T cell subsets. DCs are composed of subsets that differ in their phenotype, localization and function. DCs expressing high levels of DLL4 (DLL4+ DCs), which is a member of Notch ligand family, are newly discovered cells that have greater ability than DLL4− DCs to promote the generation of Th1 and Th17 CD4+ T cells. DLL4 derived from DLL4+ DCs is also important for promoting the differentiation and expansion of effector CD8+ T cells. Experimental studies have demonstrated that selective deletion of DLL4 in DCs causes impaired antitumor immunity. In contrast, blocking DLL4 leads to dramatic reduction of inflammatory T cell responses and their-mediated tissue damage. We will discuss emerging functional specialization within the DLL4+ DC compartment, DLL4+ DC biology and the impact of pharmacological modulation of DLL4 to control inflammatory disorders.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-15T12:38:30Z
       
  • Antinociceptive effects of the 6-O-sulfate ester of morphine in normal and
           diabetic rats: Comparative role of mu- and delta-opioid receptors
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 13 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Jai Shankar K. Yadlapalli, Benjamin M. Ford, Amit Ketkar, Anqi Wan, Narasimha R. Penthala, Robert L. Eoff, Paul L. Prather, Maxim Dobretsov, Peter A. Crooks
      This study determined the antinociceptive effects of morphine and morphine-6-O-sulphate (M6S) in both normal and diabetic rats, and evaluated the comparative role of mu-opioid receptors (mu-ORs) and delta-opioid receptors (delta-ORs) in the antinociceptive action of these opioids. In vitro characterization of mu-OR and delta-OR-mediated signaling by M6S and morphine in stably transfected Chinese hamster ovary (CHO-K1) cells showed that M6S exhibited a 6-fold higher affinity for delta-ORs and modulated G-protein and adenylyl cyclase activity via delta-ORs more potently than morphine. Interestingly, while morphine acted as a full agonist at delta-ORs in both functional assays examined, M6S exhibited either partial or full agonist activity for modulation of G-protein or adenylyl cyclase activity, respectively. Molecular docking studies indicated that M6S but not morphine binds equally well at the ligand binding site of both mu- and delta-ORs. In vivo analgesic effects of M6S and morphine in both normal and streptozotocin-induced diabetic Sprague-Dawley rats utilizing the hot water tail flick latency test showed that M6S produced more potent antinociception than morphine in both normal rats and diabetic rats. This difference in potency was abrogated following antagonism of delta- but not mu- or kappa (kappa-ORs) opioid receptors. During 9days of chronic treatment, tolerance developed to morphine-treated but not to M6S-treated rats. Rats that developed tolerance to morphine still remained responsive to M6S. Collectively, this study demonstrates that M6S is a potent and efficacious mu/delta opioid analgesic with a delayed tolerance profile when compared to morphine in both normal and diabetic rats. Perspective: This study demonstrates that M6S acts at both mu- and delta-ORs, and adds to the growing evidence that the use of mixed mu/delta opioid agonists in pain treatment may have clinical benefit.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-15T12:38:30Z
       
  • Terlipressin, a vasoactive prodrug recommended in hepatorenal syndrome, is
           an agonist of human V1, V2 and V1B receptors: Implications for its safety
           profile
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Pascal H. Colson, Anne Virsolvy, Philippe Gaudard, Azzouz Charrabi, Maithé Corbani, Maxime J. Manière, Sylvain Richard, Gilles Guillon
      Terlipressin is recommended as a gold standard to treat hepatorenal syndrome complicating liver cirrhosis. It is presented as a specific V1A receptor agonist, beyond its enzymatic conversion into lysine8-Vasopressin (LVP), able to counteract the splanchnic vasodilation. However, the complete pharmacological characterization of this drug with respect to the different vasopressin receptor subtypes is missing. We studied terlipressin intrinsic properties, focusing not only on V1A, but also on other vasopressin receptor subtypes. The experimental studies were conducted on rat and human cellular models. Binding experiments were performed on rat liver membranes and CHO cells transfected with the different human vasopressin receptor subtypes. Agonist status was assessed from inositol phosphate or cyclic AMP assays, and measurement of intracellular calcium variations, performed on cultured vascular smooth muscle cells from rat aorta and human uterine artery and CHO cells. Terlipressin binds to the rat and human V1A receptors with an affinity in the micromolar range, a value 120 fold lower than that of LVP. It induces a rapid and transient intracellular calcium increase, a robust stimulation of phospholipase C but with reduced maximal efficiencies as compared to LVP, indicating a partial V1A agonist property. In addition, terlipressin is also a full agonist of human V2 and V1B receptors, with also a micromomolar affinity. Conclusions Terlipressin is a non-selective vasopressin analogue, exhibiting intrinsic agonist properties. Its full V2 receptor agonism may result in renal effects potentially aggravating water retention and hyponatremia of cirrhosis.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-10T11:48:38Z
       
  • Esophageal cancer: The latest on chemoprevention and state of the art
           therapies
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Gregoire F. Le Bras, Muhammad H. Farooq, Gary W. Falk, Claudia D. Andl
      Esophageal cancer is currently the 8th most common cancer worldwide and the 6th leading cause of cancer-related mortality. Despite remarkable advances, the mortality for those suffering from esophageal cancer remains high, with 5-year survival rates of less than 20%. In part, because most patients present with late-stage disease, long-term survival even after resection and therapy is disappointingly low. As we will discuss in this review, multiple characteristics specific to the disease stage and patient must be considered when choosing a treatment plan. This article will summarize current standard therapies, potential application of chemoprevention drugs and the promise and partial failure of personalized medicine, as well as novel treatments addressing this disease.


      PubDate: 2016-09-10T11:48:38Z
       
  • Modulation of monocytes by bioactive lipid anandamide in multiple
           sclerosis involves distinct Toll-like receptors
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 8 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Valerio Chiurchiù, Alessandro Leuti, Maria Teresa Cencioni, Maria Albanese, Marco De Bardi, Tiziana Bisogno, Diego Centonze, Luca Battistini, Mauro Maccarrone
      Monocytes are believed to be involved in the immunopathogenesis of multiple sclerosis (MS). The aim of this study was to investigate their role in MS and their immunomodulation by the endocannabinoid system (ECS), a novel target for the treatment of this disease. We compared the level of cytokine production from monocytes in healthy subjects and MS patients upon stimulation with viral or bacterial Toll-like receptors (TLR) and we evaluated the ECS immunomodulatory role in these cells. Here we show that MS monocytes produced more TNF-α, IL-12 and IL-6 following activation of TLR2/4 with LPS or of TLR5 with flagellin, as opposed to TLR7/8 stimulation with R848. Furthermore AEA, the main endocannabinoid, suppressed cytokine production and release from healthy monocytes upon stimulation with both bacterial and viral TLR receptors but not in cells from MS patients, where its immunosuppressive activity was TLR7/8-dependent. Altered expression levels of key ECS members in MS monocytes paralleled these data. Our data disclose a distinct immunomodulatory effect of AEA and an alteration of AEA-related members of the ECS in monocytes from MS patients that involves viral but not bacterial TLR. These findings not only may help to better understand the role of monocytes in MS immunopathogenesis but also could be of help to exploit new endocannabinoid-based drugs that target innate immune cells.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-10T11:48:38Z
       
  • Histone deacetylase inhibitors: Future therapeutics for insulin resistance
           and type 2 diabetes
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Sorabh Sharma, Rajeev Taliyan
      Insulin resistance is a common feature of obesity and predisposes the affected individuals to a variety of pathologies, including type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), dyslipidemias, hypertension, cardiovascular disease etc. Insulin resistance is the primary cause of T2DM and it occurs many years before the disease onset. Although Thiazolidinediones (TZDs) such as rosiglitazone and pioglitazone are outstanding insulin sensitizers and are in clinical use since 1990s, however, their serious side effects such as heart attack and bladder cancer have limited their utilization. Thus, there is an unmet need to identify a new class of drugs with insulin sensitizing activity and minimal side effects. In the recent years, Histone deacetylase (HDAC) has emerged as a new molecular target in the control of insulin resistance and T2DM. The level of histone acetylation/deacetylation has been found to be altered during insulin resistance and T2DM conditions. HDAC inhibitors have been found to effectively manage insulin resistance and T2DM in various preclinical models and clinical trials. In this review we will focus on various aspects related to regulation of insulin signalling by HDACs and the future scope of HDAC inhibitors as therapeutics for insulin resistance.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-10T11:48:38Z
       
  • Pharmacogenomic Analyzis of the Responsiveness of Gastrointestinal Tumor
           Cell Lines to Drug Therapy: a Transportome Approach
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Natàlia Grañé-Boladeras, Sandra Pérez-Torras, Juan José Lozano, Marta R. Romero, Adela Mazo, Jose J.G. Marin, Marçal Pastor-Anglada
      In this study, we have addressed the pharmacogenomic basis of the response of gastrointestinal tumors to six anticancer drugs using a panel of fifteen cell lines derived from pancreatic, stomach and biliary tract cancers. We determined the constitutive expression levels of 96 genes, whose encoded proteins contribute to drug action, and identified a major gene network that contains broad selectivity nucleoside transporter genes, as well as several genes known to be involved in cell proliferation and survival. All cell lines were exposed to 5′-DFUR, 5-FU, gemcitabine, cisplatin, doxorubicin and paclitaxel for 48h and cell response was measured using MTT assays. We correlated the cell response of the fifteen cell lines with the mRNA expression of the selected 96 genes and identified sets of 4-5 genes whose expression profiles correlated to responsiveness to each anticancer drug. These genes may be good candidates as response predictors to such therapies.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-10T11:48:38Z
       
  • The novel H2S-donor 4-carboxyphenyl isothiocyanate promotes
           cardioprotective effects against ischemia/reperfusion injury through
           activation of mitoKATP channels and reduction of oxidative stress
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Lara Testai, Alice Marino, Ilaria Piano, Vincenzo Brancaleone, Kengo Tomita, Lorenzo Di Cesare Mannelli, Alma Martelli, Valentina Citi, Maria C. Breschi, Roberto Levi, Claudia Gargini, Mariarosaria Bucci, Giuseppe Cirino, Carla Ghelardini, Vincenzo Calderone
      The endogenous gasotransmitter hydrogen sulphide (H2S) is an important regulator of the cardiovascular system, particularly of myocardial function. Moreover, H2S exhibits cardioprotective activity against ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) or hypoxic injury, and is considered an important mediator of “ischemic preconditioning”, through activation of mitochondrial potassium channels, reduction of oxidative stress, activation of the endogenous “anti-oxidant machinery” and limitation of inflammatory responses. Accordingly, H2S-donors, i.e. pro-drugs able to generate exogenous H2S, are viewed as promising therapeutic agents for a number of cardiovascular diseases. The novel H2S-donor 4-carboxy phenyl-isothiocyanate (4CPI), whose vasorelaxing effects were recently reported, was tested here in different experimental models of myocardial I/R. In Langendorff-perfused rat hearts subjected to I/R, 4CPI significantly improved the post-ischemic recovery of myocardial functional parameters and limited tissue injury. These effects were antagonized by 5-hydroxydecanoic acid (a blocker of mitoKATP channels). Moreover, 4CPI inhibited the formation of reactive oxygen species. We found the whole battery of H2S-producing enzymes to be present in myocardial tissue: cystathionine γ-lyase (CSE), cystathionine β-synthase (CBS) and 3-mercaptopyruvate sulfurtransferase (MPST). Notably, 4CPI down-regulated the post-ischemic expression of CSE. In Langendorff-perfused mouse hearts, 4CPI reduced the post-ischemic release of norepinephrine and the incidence of ventricular arrhythmias. In both rat and mouse hearts, 4CPI did not affect the degranulation of resident mast cells. In isolated rat cardiac mitochondria, 4CPI partially depolarized the mitochondrial membrane potential; this effect was antagonized by ATP (i.e., the physiological inhibitor of KATP channels). Moreover, 4CPI abrogated calcium uptake in the mitochondrial matrix. Finally, in an in vivo model of acute myocardial infarction in rats, 4CPI significantly decreased I/R-induced tissue injury. In conclusion, H2S-donors, and in particular isothiocyanate-based H2S-releasing drugs like 4CPI, can actually be considered a suitable pharmacological option in anti-ischemic therapy.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-10T11:48:38Z
       
  • Palmitoylethanolamide protects mice against 6-OHDA-induced neurotoxicity
           and endoplasmic reticulum stress: In vivo and in vitro evidence
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Carmen Avagliano, Roberto Russo, Carmen De Caro, Claudia Cristiano, Giovanna La Rana, Giuseppe Piegari, Orlando Paciello, Rita Citraro, Emilio Russo, Giovambattista De Sarro, Rosaria Meli, Giuseppina Mattace Raso, Antonio Calignano
      Several pathogenetic factors have been involved in the onset and progression of Parkinson's disease (PD), including inflammation, oxidative stress, unfolded protein accumulation, and apoptosis. Palmitoylethanolamide (PEA), an endogenous N-acylethanolamine, has been shown to be a neuroprotective and anti-inflammatory molecule, acting as a peroxisome proliferator activated receptor (PPAR)-α agonist. In this study we investigated the effects of PEA on behavioral alterations and the underlying pathogenic mechanisms in the 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-induced model of PD in male mice. Additionally, we showed the involvement of PPAR-α in PEA protective effect on SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma against 6-OHDA damage. Here, we report that PEA (3–30mg/kg/days.c.) improved behavioral impairments induced by unilateral intrastriatal injection of 6-OHDA. This effect was accompanied by a significant increase in tyrosine hydroxylase expression at striatal level, indicating PEA preserving effect on dopaminergic neurons. Moreover, we found a reduction in the expression of pro-inflammatory enzymes, i.e. inducible nitric oxide synthase and cyclooxygenase-2, a modulation between pro- and anti-apoptotic markers, suggestive of PEA capability in controlling neuroinflammation and cell death. Interestingly, PEA also showed protective scavenging effect, through superoxide dismutase induction, and dampened unfolding protein response, interfering on glucose-regulated protein 78 expression and PERK-eIF2α pathway. Similar data were found in in vitro studies, where PEA treatment was found to rescue SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells from 6-OHDA-induced damage and death, partly by inhibiting endoplasmic reticulum stress detrimental response. Therefore, PEA, counteracting the pathogenetic aspects involved in the development of PD, showed its therapeutic potential, possibly integrating current treatments correcting dopaminergic deficits and motor dysfunction.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-10T11:48:38Z
       
  • Homocysteine and hydrogen sulfide in epigenetic, metabolic and microbiota
           related renovascular hypertension
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 4 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Gregory J. Weber, Sathnur B. Pushpakumar, Suresh C. Tyagi, Utpal Sen
      Over the past several years, hydrogen sulfide (H2S) has been shown to be an important player in a variety of physiological functions, including neuromodulation, vasodilation, oxidant regulation, inflammation, and angiogenesis. H2S is synthesized primarily through metabolic processes from the amino acid cysteine and homocysteine in various organ systems including neuronal, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, and kidney. Derangement of cysteine and homocysteine metabolism and clearance, particularly in the renal vasculature, leads to H2S biosynthesis deregulation causing or contributing to existing high blood pressure. While a variety of environmental influences, such as diet can have an effect on H2S regulation and function, genetic factors, and more recently epigenetics, also have a vital role in H2S regulation and function, and therefore disease initiation and progression. In addition, new research into the role of gut microbiota in the development of hypertension has highlighted the need to further explore these microorganisms and how they influence the levels of H2S throughout the body and possibly exploiting microbiota for use of hypertension treatment. In this review, we summarize recent advances in the field of hypertension research emphasizing renal contribution and how H2S physiology can be exploited as a possible therapeutic strategy to ameliorate kidney dysfunction as well as to control blood pressure.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-06T11:18:25Z
       
  • Ligand autoradiographical quantification of histamine H3 receptor in human
           dementia with Lewy bodies
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Natasha L. Lethbridge, Paul L. Chazot
      Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) is a serious age-dependent human neurodegenerative disease, with multiple debilitating symptoms, including dementia, psychosis and significant motor deficits, but with little or no effective treatments. This comparative ligand autoradiographical study has quantified histamine H3 receptors (H3R) in a series of major cortical and basal ganglia structures in human DLB and Alzheimer’s (AD) post-mortem cases using the highly selective radioligand, [3H] GSK189254. In the main, the levels of H3 receptor were largely preserved in DLB cases when compared with aged-matched controls. However, we provide new evidence showing variable levels in the globus pallidus, and, moreover, raised levels of Pallidum H3 correlated with positive psychotic symptoms, in particular delusions and visual hallucinations, but not symptoms associated with depression. Furthermore, no correlation was detected for H3 receptor levels to MMSE or IUPRS symptom severity. This study suggests that H3R antagonists have scope for treating the psychotic symptomologies in DLB and other human brain disorders.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-06T11:18:25Z
       
  • Celastrol modulates inflammation through inhibition of the catalytic
           activity of mediators of arachidonic acid pathway: secretory phospholipase
           A2 group IIA, 5-lipoxygenase and cyclooxygenase-2
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 3 September 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research
      Author(s): Vikram Joshi, Shivaprasad H. Venkatesha, Chandrasekaran Ramakrishnan, Ankanahalli N. Nanjaraj Urs, Vilas Hiremath, Kamal D Moudgil, Devadasan Velmurugan, Bannikuppe Sannanaik Vishwanath
      Elevated production of arachidonic acid (AA)-derived pro-inflammatory eicosanoids due to the concerted action of secretory phospholipase A2 group IIA (sPLA2IIA), 5-lipoxygenase (5-LOX) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) is a common feature of many inflammatory disorders. Hence, modulation of the bioactivity of these 3 enzymes is an important strategy to control inflammation. However, the failure of drugs specific for an individual enzyme (sPLA2IIA-, 5-LOX- or COX-2) and the success of 5-LOX/COX-2 dual inhibitors in effectively controlling inflammation in clinical trials prompted us to evaluate a common inhibitor for sPLA2IIA, 5-LOX and COX-2 enzymes. Celastrol, a quinone methide triterpene, was selected in this regard through molecular docking studies. We provide the first evidence for celastrol’s ability to inhibit the catalytic activity of sPLA2IIA, 5-LOX and COX-2 enzymes. Celastrol significantly inhibited the catalytic activity of sPLA2IIA (IC50 =6μM) in vitro, which is independent of substrate and calcium concentration. In addition, celastrol inhibited the catalytic activities of 5-LOX (IC50 =5μM) and COX-2 (IC50 =20μM) in vitro; sPLA2IIA-induced edema and carrageenan-induced edema in mice; and lipopolysaccharide-stimulated production of PGE2 in human neutrophils. Thus, celastrol modulates inflammatory responses by targeting multiple enzymes of AA pathway.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-06T11:18:25Z
       
  • Pharmacological inhibition of fatty acid amide hydrolase attenuates social
           behavioural deficits in male rats prenatally exposed to valproic acid
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Daniel M. Kerr, Aoife Gilmartin, Michelle Roche
      Autism spectrum disorders are a group of neurodevelopmental disorders characterised by impaired social interaction, deficits in communication and repetitive stereotyped behaviours. The endocannabinoid system plays an important role in modulating emotionality and social responding, however there have been a paucity of studies investigating this system in autistic animal models. This study investigated the effect of inhibiting fatty acid amide hydrolyase (FAAH), the anandamide catabolic enzyme, on behavioural responding in the valproic acid (VPA) rat model of autism. Male rats prenatally exposed to VPA exhibit an autistic-like behavioural phenotype exemplified as thermal hypoalgesia, reduced social and exploratory behaviour, and enhanced repetitive behaviour. Systemic administration of the FAAH inhibitor PF3845 (10mg/kg) attenuated the deficit in social behaviour observed in VPA exposed male animals without altering nociceptive, repetitive or exploratory behaviour. In comparison, female VPA exposed rats displayed enhanced repetitive and reduced exploratory behaviour, but no change in social behaviour or thermal nociceptive responding. PF3845 did not alter social, repetitive or thermal nociceptive responding, but reduced exploratory behaviour in a social context in VPA-, but not saline-, exposed females. These data indicate that FAAH inhibition elicits sexual dimorphic effects on behavioural responding in VPA exposed rodents, and support an important role for FAAH in the regulation of social behavioural deficits in autistic males.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-06T11:18:25Z
       
  • Pure Δ9-tetrahydrocannabivarin and a Cannabis sativa extract with high
           content in Δ9-tetrahydrocannabivarin inhibit nitrite production in murine
           peritoneal macrophages
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Barbara Romano, Ester Pagano, Pierangelo Orlando, Raffaele Capasso, Maria Grazia Cascio, Roger Pertwee, Vincenzo Di Marzo, Angelo A. Izzo, Francesca Borrelli
      Historical and scientific evidence suggests that Cannabis use has immunomodulatory and anti-inflammatory effects. We have here investigated the effect of the non-psychotropic phytocannabinoid Δ9-tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV) and of a Cannabis sativa extract with high (64.8%) content in THCV (THCV-BDS) on nitric oxide (NO) production, and on cannabinoid and transient receptor potential (TRP) channel expression in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated murine peritoneal macrophages. THCV-BDS and THCV exhibited similar affinity in radioligand binding assays for CB1 and CB2 receptors, and inhibited, via CB2 but not CB1 cannabinoid receptors, nitrite production evoked by LPS in peritoneal macrophages. THCV down-regulated the over-expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and interleukin 1β (IL-1β) proteins induced by LPS. Furthermore, THCV counteracted LPS-induced up-regulation of CB1 receptors, without affecting the changes in CB2, TRPV2 or TRPV4 mRNA expression caused by LPS. Other TRP channels, namely, TRPA1, TRPV1, TRPV3 and TRPM8 were poorly expressed or undetectable in both unstimulated and LPS-challenged macrophages. It is concluded that THCV − via CB2 receptor activation − inhibits nitrite production in macrophages. The effect of this phytocannabinoid was associated with a down-regulation of CB1, but not CB2 or TRP channel mRNA expression.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-01T10:22:43Z
       
  • Regulation and role of endogenously produced hydrogen sulfide in
           angiogenesis
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Antonia Katsouda, Sofia-Iris Bibli, Anastasia Pyriochou, Csaba Szabo, Andreas Papapetropoulos
      Recent studies have implicated endogenously produced H2S in the angiogenic process. On one hand, pharmacological inhibition and silencing of the enzymes involved in H 2 S synthesis attenuate the angiogenic properties of endothelial cells, including proliferation, migration and tube-like structure network formation. On the other hand, enhanced production of H 2 S by substrate supplementation or over-expression of H2S-producing enzymes leads to enhanced angiogenic responses in cultured endothelial cells. Importantly, H2S up-regulates expression of the key angiogenic factor vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and contributes to the angiogenic signaling in response to VEGF. The signaling pathways mediating H2S-induced angiogenesis include mitogen-activated protein kinases, phosphoinositide-3 kinase, nitric oxide/cGMP-regulated cascades and ATP-sensitive potassium channels. Endogenously produced H2S has also been shown to facilitate neovascularization in prototypical model systems in vivo, and to contribute to wound healing, post-ischemic angiogenesis in the heart and other tissues, as well as in tumor angiogenesis. Targeting of H2S synthesizing enzymes might offer novel therapeutic opportunities for angiogenesis-related diseases.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-01T10:22:43Z
       
  • Stimulation of the histamine 4 receptor upregulates thymic stromal
           lymphopoietin (TSLP) in human and murine keratinocytes
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Katrin Schaper, Kristine Rossbach, Brigitta Köther, Holger Stark, Manfred Kietzmann, Thomas Werfel, Ralf Gutzmer
      The cytokine thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP) is involved in the development and the progression of allergic diseases. It is mainly released by epithelial cells at barriers such as skin and gut in response to danger signals. Overexpression of TSLP in keratinocytes (KC) can provoke the development of a type 2 inflammatory response. Additionally, TSLP directly acts on sensory neurons and thereby triggers itch. Since histamine is also increased in lesions of inflammatory skin diseases, the aim of this study was to investigate possible effects of histamine as well as different histamine receptor subtype agonists and antagonists on TSLP production in KC. We therefore stimulated human KC with histamine in the presence or absence of the known TSLP-inductor poly I:C and measured TSLP production at protein as well as mRNA level. Histamine alone did not induce TSLP production in human KC, but pre-incubation with histamine prior to challenge with poly I:C resulted in a significant increase of TSLP production compared to stimulation with poly I:C alone. Experiments with different histamine receptor agonists (H1R: 2-pyridylethylamine; H2R: amthamine; H2R/H4R: 4-methylhistamine (4MH)) revealed a dominant role for the H4R receptor, as 4-MH in combination with poly I:C displayed a significant increase of TSLP secretion, while the other agonists did not show any effect. The increase in TSLP production by 4MH was blocked with the H4R antagonist JNJ7777120. This effect was reproducible also in the murine KC cell line MSC. Taken together, our study indicates a new role for the H4 receptor in the regulation of TSLP in keratinocytes. Therefore, blocking of the H4R receptor in allergic diseases might be promising to alleviate inflammation and pruritus via TSLP.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-01T10:22:43Z
       
  • Signaling effects of sodium hydrosulfide in healthy donor peripheral blood
           mononuclear cells
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): André Sulen, Stein-Erik Gullaksen, Lucius Bader, David W. McClymont, Jørn Skavland, Sonia Gavasso, Bjørn T. Gjertsen
      Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is an endogenous gasotransmitter in human physiology and inflammatory disease, however, with limited knowledge of how signal transduction pathways are involved in immune cells. To examine the effects of sulfide on relevant intracellular signaling in human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs), we stimulated healthy donor PBMCs with sodium hydrosulfide (NaHS, 1–1000μM) to mimic H2S stimulation, and analyzed phosphorylation of p38 mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPK) (pT180/pY182), NF-κB p65 (pS529), Akt (pS473) and CREB/ATF1 (pS133/pS63) with flow and mass cytometry. In contrast to transient effects in subsets of lymphocytes, classical monocytes demonstrated sustained phosphorylation of p38, Akt and CREB/ATF1. NaHS induced calcium dependent phosphorylation of p38, Akt and CREB, but not NF-κB, and the phosphorylation of Akt was partly dependent on p38, indicative of p38-Akt crosstalk. Attenuation of these effects by molecules targeting p38 and Hsp90 indicated Hsp90 as a possible target for H2S-induced activation of p38. These results provide a description of a NaHS-induced signal transduction pathway in human primary immune cells that may have relevance for the role of sulfides in inflammation.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-01T10:22:43Z
       
  • The novel mitochondria-targeted hydrogen sulfide (H2S) donors AP123 and
           AP39 protect against hyperglycemic injury in microvascular endothelial
           cells in vitro
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Domokos Gerő, Roberta Torregrossa, Alexis Perry, Alicia Waters, Sophie Le-Trionnaire, Jacqueline L. Whatmore, Mark Wood, Matthew Whiteman
      The development of diabetic vascular complications is initiated, at least in part, by mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in endothelial cells. Hyperglycemia induces superoxide production in the mitochondria and initiates changes in the mitochondrial membrane potential that leads to mitochondrial dysfunction. Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) supplementation has been shown to reduce the mitochondrial oxidant production and shows efficacy against diabetic vascular damage in vivo. However, the half-life of H2S is very short and it is not specific for the mitochondria. We have therefore evaluated two novel mitochondria-targeted anethole dithiolethione and hydroxythiobenzamide H2S donors (AP39 and AP123 respectively) at preventing hyperglycemia-induced oxidative stress and metabolic changes in microvascular endothelial cells in vitro. Hyperglycemia (HG) induced significant increase in the activity of the citric acid cycle and led to elevated mitochondrial membrane potential. Mitochondrial oxidant production was increased and the mitochondrial electron transport decreased in hyperglycemic cells. AP39 and AP123 (30–300nM) decreased HG-induced hyperpolarisation of the mitochondrial membrane and inhibited the mitochondrial oxidant production. Both H2S donors (30–300nM) increased the electron transport at respiratory complex III and improved the cellular metabolism. Targeting H2S to mitochondria retained the cytoprotective effect of H2S against glucose-induced damage in endothelial cells suggesting that the molecular target of H2S action is within the mitochondria. Mitochondrial targeting of H2S also induced >1000-fold increase in the potency of H2S against hyperglycemia-induced injury. The high potency and long-lasting effect elicited by these H2S donors strongly suggests that these compounds could be useful against diabetic vascular complications.
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      PubDate: 2016-09-01T10:22:43Z
       
  • The paracrine control of vascular motion. A historical perspective
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Eduardo Nava, Silvia Llorens
      During the last quarter of the past century, the leading role the endocrine and nervous systems had on the regulation of vasomotion, shifted towards a more paracrine-based regulation. This begun with the recognition of endothelial cells as active players of vascular control, when the vessel’s intimal layer was identified as the main source of prostacyclin and was followed by the discovery of an endothelium-derived smooth muscle cell relaxing factor (EDRF). The new position acquired by endothelial cells prompted the discovery of other endothelium-derived regulatory products: vasoconstrictors, generally known as EDCFs, endothelin, and other vasodilators with hyperpolarizing properties (EDHFs). While this research was taking place, a quest for the discovery of the nature of EDRF carried back to a research line commenced a decade earlier: the recently found intracellular messenger cGMP and nitrovasodilators. Both were smooth muscle relaxants and appeared to interact in a hormonal fashion. Prejudice against an unconventional gaseous molecule delayed the acceptance that EDRF was nitric oxide (NO). When this happened, a new era of research that exceeded the vascular field commenced. The discovery of the pathway for NO synthesis from L-arginine involved the clever assembling of numerous unrelated observations of different areas of knowledge. The last ten years of research on the paracrine regulation of the vascular wall has shifted to perivascular fat (PVAT), which is beginning to be regarded as the fourth layer of the vascular wall. Starting with the discovery of an adipose-derived relaxing substance (ADRF), the role that different adipokines have on the paracrine control of vasomotion is now filling the research activity of many vascular pharmacology labs, and surprising interactions between the endothelium, PVAT and smooth muscle are being unveiled.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-27T08:55:00Z
       
  • Sex-specific pharmacological modulation of autophagic process in human
           umbilical artery smooth muscle cells
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Ilaria Campesi, Stefano Occhioni, Giampiero Capobianco, Marco Fois, Andrea Montella, Salvatore Dessole, Flavia Franconi
      Sex has largely been neglected in cell studies. Therefore, we investigated the occurrence of sexual dimorphism in human umbilical artery smooth muscle cells (HUASMCs). In particular, we investigated the existence of sex differences in basal and in drug-induced autophagy, a process involved in cardiovascular diseases. HUASMCs were isolated from healthy and normal weight male and female newborns (MHUASMCs and FHUASMCs, respectively). Expression of the primary molecules involved in the autophagic process [beclin-1 and microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3 (LC3)], and PmTOR were detected using western blotting in basal conditions, after serum starvation, rapamycin and verapamil treatments. The level of constitutive autophagy, measured as the LC3II/I ratio, was similar in male and female HUASMCs in the basal condition. Serum starvation promoted autophagy in both cell types, but the increase was more pronounced in FHUASMCs, while 250nM rapamycin induced autophagy only in female cells. Moreover, the level of verapamil-induced autophagy was not different between the two sexes. Notably, in the basal condition, Beclin-1 was more elevated in MHUASMCs than in FHUASMCs, and the difference disappeared after serum starvation and exposure to rapamycin. After exposure to verapamil, the differences in Beclin-1 increased, with more elevated expression levels in female cells. PmTor did not differ in basal conditions, but it was significantly down-regulated by starvation only in FHUASMCs and by rapamycin both in male and female cells. Finally, a strong negative correlation was observed between the newborn’s weight and basal autophagy in female cells and between the newborn’s weight and the LC3II/I ratio in male verapamil-treated cells. These results indicate that sex-differences begin in utero, are parameter-specific and drug specific suggesting that HUASMCs are a suitable model for the screening of drugs and to study the influence of sex. The sex differences in the autophagy suggest sexually different pharmacodynamics effects of verapamil and rapamycin.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-27T08:55:00Z
       
  • S-Sulfhydration of ATP synthase by hydrogen sulfide stimulates
           mitochondrial bioenergetics
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Katalin Módis, YoungJun Ju, Akbar Ahmad, Ashley A. Untereiner, Zaid Altaany, Lingyun Wu, Csaba Szabo, Rui Wang
      Mammalian cells can utilize hydrogen sulfide (H2S) to support mitochondrial respiration. The aim of our study was to explore the potential role of S-sulfhydration (a H2S-induced posttranslational modification, also known as S-persulfidation) of the mitochondrial inner membrane protein ATP synthase (F1F0 ATP synthase/Complex V) in the regulation of mitochondrial bioenergetics. Using a biotin switch assay, we have detected S-sulfhydration of the α subunit (ATP5A1) of ATP synthase in response to exposure to H2S in vitro. The H2S generator compound NaHS induced S-sulfhydration of ATP5A1 in HepG2 and HEK293 cell lysates in a concentration-dependent manner (50–300μM). The activity of immunocaptured mitochondrial ATP synthase enzyme isolated from HepG2 and HEK293 cells was stimulated by NaHS at low concentrations (10–100nM). Site-directed mutagenesis of ATP5A1 in HEK293 cells demonstrated that cysteine residues at positions 244 and 294 are subject to S-sulfhydration. The double mutant ATP synthase protein (C244S/C294S) showed a significantly reduced enzyme activity compared to control and the single-cysteine-mutated recombinant proteins (C244S or C294S). To determine whether endogenous H2S plays a role in the basal S-sulfhydration of ATP synthase in vivo, we compared liver tissues harvested from wild-type mice and mice deficient in cystathionine-gamma-lyase (CSE, one of the three principal mammalian H2S-producing enzymes). Significantly reduced S-sulfhydration of ATP5A1 was observed in liver homogenates of CSE−/− mice, compared to wild-type mice, suggesting a physiological role for CSE-derived endogenous H2S production in the S-sulfhydration of ATP synthase. Various forms of critical illness (including burn injury) upregulate H2S-producing enzymes and stimulate H2S biosynthesis. In liver tissues collected from mice subjected to burn injury, we detected an increased S-sulfhydration of ATP5A1 at the early time points post-burn. At later time points (when systemic H2S levels decrease) S-sulfhydration of ATP5A1 decreased as well. In conclusion, H2S induces S-sulfhydration of ATP5A1 at C244 and C294. This post-translational modification may be a physiological mechanism to maintain ATP synthase in a physiologically activated state, thereby supporting mitochondrial bioenergetics. The sulfhydration of ATP synthase may be a dynamic process, which may be regulated by endogenous H2S levels under various pathophysiological conditions.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-27T08:55:00Z
       
  • Enhanced anti-tumor efficacy of paclitaxel with PEGylated lipidic
           nanocapsules in presence of curcumin and poloxamer: In vitro and in vivo
           studies
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Mohammed Anwar, Sohail Akhter, Neha Mallick, Sharmistha Mohapatra, Sobiya Zafar, M. Moshahid A. Rizvi, Asgar Ali, Farhan J.. Ahmad
      Cancer chemotherapeutic drug containing PEGylated lipidic nanocapsules (D-LNCs) were formulated by the controlled addition of organic phase (combined solution of paclitaxel and curcumin in a mixture of oleic acid and MPEG2000-DSPE (90:2.5 molar ratio) in acetone) to the aqueous phase (consist of Poloxamer 407 as emulsifying agents and glycerol as a co-solvent) at a temperature of 55–60°C followed by evaporation of organic solvent. The obtained pre-colloidal dispersion of D-LNCs was processed through high pressure homogenization to get more uniformly and nano-sized particles. Effect of concentration of emulsifying agent and process variables of high pressure homogenization (pressure and number of cycles) on average particle size and entrapment efficiency was further investigated by constructing Box–Behnken experimental design to achieve the optimum manufacturing process. D-LNCs were characterized by dynamic light scattering, scanning and transmission electron microscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, and differential scanning calorimetry. In vitro release studies showed a sustained release pattern of drug from the PEGylated D-LNCs, whereas in vivo pharmacokinetic studies after a single-dose intravenous (i.v.) administration of paclitaxel (15mg/kg) in Ehrlich ascites tumor (EAT)-bearing female Swiss albino mice showed a prolonged circulation time and slower elimination of paclitaxel from D-LNCs as compared with marketed formulation (Paclitec®). From the plasma concentration vs. time profile, i.v. bioavailability (AUC0-∞) of paclitaxel from D-LNCs was found to be increased approximately 2.91-fold (P<0.001) as compared to Paclitec®. In vitro cell viability assay against MCF-7 and MCF-7/ADR cell lines, in vivo biodistribution studies and tumor inhibition study in EAT-bearing mice, all together prove its significantly improved potency towards cancer therapy.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-27T08:55:00Z
       
  • Enzyme-responsive multistage vector for drug delivery to tumor tissue
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Yu Mi, Joy Wolfram, Chaofeng Mu, Xuewu Liu, Elvin Blanco, Haifa Shen, Mauro Ferrari
      Various nanodelivery systems have been designed to release therapeutic agents upon contact with specific enzymes. However, enzyme-triggered release typically takes place in the tissue interstitium, thereby resulting in the extracellular delivery of drugs. Here, we have designed an enzyme-stimulated multistage vector (ESMSV), which enables stimulus-triggered release of drug-encapsulated nanoparticles from a microparticle. Specifically, polymeric nanoparticles with a surface matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP2) peptide substrate were conjugated to the surface of porous silicon microparticles. In the presence of MMP2, the polymeric nanoparticles were released into the tumor interstitium. This platform can be used to attain triggered drug release, while simultaneously facilitating the cellular internalization of drugs. The results indicate that nanoparticle release was MMP2-specific and resulted in improved intracellular uptake of hydrophobic agents in the presence of MMP2. Furthermore, in a mouse model of melanoma lung metastasis, systemic delivery of ESMSVs caused a substantial increase in intracellular accumulation of agents in cancer cells in comparison to delivery with non-stimulus-responsive particles.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-23T08:51:54Z
       
  • The hypophagic factor oleoylethanolamide differentially increases c-fos
           expression in appetite regulating centres in the brain of wild type and
           histamine deficient mice
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Hayato Umehara, Roberta Fabbri, Gustavo Provensi, M. Beatrice Passani
      Histaminergic neurons in the hypothalamic tuberomamillary nucleus (TMN) establish connections with virtually all brain areas. Recent evidence suggests that feeding-related motivation is correlated with the activation of a subpopulation of histamine neurons in the ventral TMN that project to hypothalamic and subcortical areas controlling feeding behaviour. Oleoylethanolamide (OEA) is a hypophagic lipid-amide released by the small intestine in response to daily fat intake that indirectly activates hypothalamic oxytocin-neurons in the paraventricular (PVN) and supraoptic (SON) nuclei. We recently showed that OEA requires the integrity of neuronal histamine to fully display its hypophagic effect. Here we aimed to investigate if differences exist in OEA-induced c-Fos expression in several brain regions of fasted, histidine decarboxylase (HDC)-KO mice that do not synthesize histamine, and wild type (WT) littermates. All the brain regions examined receive histaminergic innervation and are involved in different aspects of feeding behaviour. We found that OEA increased c-Fos expression in the SON, arcuate nucleus (ARC) and the amygdala of WT mice, but not HDC-KO mice, whereas neither genotype nor treatment differences were observed in the lateral and dorsomedial hypothalamus. Furthermore, oxytocin-immunostaining was markedly increased in the neurohypophysis of WT and not in HDC-KO mice. Of note, OEA increased c-Fos expression in the nucleus of solitary tract of both genotypes. Our findings suggest that the TMN serves as a relay station to elaborate peripheral signals that control homeostatic and adaptive behavioural responses.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-23T08:51:54Z
       
  • The hallucinogen d-lysergic diethylamide (LSD) decreases dopamine firing
           activity through 5-HT1A, D2 and TAAR1 receptors
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Danilo De Gregorio, Luca Posa, Rafael Ochoa-Sanchez, Ryan McLaughlin, Sabatino Maione, Stefano Comai, Gabriella Gobbi
      d-lysergic diethylamide (LSD) is a hallucinogenic drug that interacts with the serotonin (5-HT) system binding to 5-HT1 and 5-HT2 receptors. Little is known about its potential interactions with the dopamine (DA) neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA). Using in-vivo electrophysiology in male adult rats, we evaluated the effects of cumulative doses of LSD on VTA DA neuronal activity, compared these effects to those produced on 5-HT neurons in the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN), and attempted to identify the mechanism of action mediating the effects of LSD on VTA DA neurons. LSD, at low doses (5–20μg/kg, i.v.) induced a significant decrease of DRN 5-HT firing activity through 5-HT2A and D2 receptors. At these low doses, LSD did not alter VTA DA neuronal activity. On the contrary, at higher doses (30–120μg/kg, i.v.), LSD dose-dependently decreased VTA DA firing activity. The depletion of 5-HT with p-chlorophenylalanine did not modulate the effects of LSD on DA firing activity. The inhibitory effects of LSD on VTA DA firing activity were prevented by the D2 receptor antagonist haloperidol (50μg/kg, i.v.) and by the 5-HT1A receptor antagonist WAY-100,635 (500μg/kg, i.v.). Notably, pretreatment with the trace amine-associate receptor 1 (TAAR1) antagonist EPPTB (5mg/kg, i.v.) blocked the inhibitory effect of LSD on VTA DA neurons. These results suggest that LSD at high doses strongly affects DA mesolimbic neuronal activity in a 5-HT independent manner and with a pleiotropic mechanism of action involving 5-HT1A, D2 and TAAR1 receptors.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-23T08:51:54Z
       
  • The novel cannabinoid antagonist SM-11 reduces hedonic aspect of food
           intake through a dopamine-dependent mechanism
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): G.R. Fois, L. Fattore, G. Murineddu, A. Salis, G. Pintore, B. Asproni, G.A. Pinna, M. Diana
      Cannabinoids, endogenous and exogenously administered, are known to positively regulate food intake and energy balance. Since CB1 receptor antagonists reduce food intake and antagonize overweight, we developed a new CB1 receptor antagonist in an attempt to identify a compound with potential application in overeating disorders. The newly developed SM-11 compound dose-dependently decreases food intake in rats by 15–20%. Moreover, SM-11 reduces self-administration of palatable food in both food restricted and ad libitum fed rats, suggesting an action on the hedonic component of food intake. Thus, we next tested the effect of SM-11 on the stimulating properties of the CB1 receptor agonist WIN55,212-2 (WIN) on the electrophysiological activity of Nucleus Accumbens-projecting dopaminergic neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA). SM-11 fully and readily antagonized the WIN-induced increments in single spiking and burst firing of antidromically-identified dopamine neurons. When administered to naïve (no WIN-pretreated) rats, SM-11 did not alter basal neuronal activity, thereby suggesting a pure antagonistic profile. SM-11 thus appears as a promising candidate in the search of potential anti-obesity medications.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-23T08:51:54Z
       
  • Screening of a composite library of clinically used drugs and
           well-characterized pharmacological compounds for cystathionine β-synthase
           inhibition identifies benserazide as a drug potentially suitable for
           repurposing for the experimental therapy of colon cancer
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Nadiya Druzhyna, Bartosz Szczesny, Gabor Olah, Katalin Módis, Antonia Asimakopoulou, Athanasia Pavlidou, Petra Szoleczky, Domokos Gerö, Kazunori Yanagi, Gabor Törö, Isabel López-García, Vassilios Myrianthopoulos, Emmanuel Mikros, John R. Zatarain, Celia Chao, Andreas Papapetropoulos, Mark R. Hellmich, Csaba Szabo
      Cystathionine-β-synthase (CBS) has been recently identified as a drug target for several forms of cancer. Currently no potent and selective CBS inhibitors are available. Using a composite collection of 8871 clinically used drugs and well-annotated pharmacological compounds (including the LOPAC library, the FDA Approved Drug Library, the NIH Clinical Collection, the New Prestwick Chemical Library, the US Drug Collection, the International Drug Collection, the ‘Killer Plates’ collection and a small custom collection of PLP-dependent enzyme inhibitors), we conducted an in vitro screen in order to identify inhibitors for CBS using a primary 7-azido-4-methylcoumarin (AzMc) screen to detect CBS-derived hydrogen sulfide (H2S) production. Initial hits were subjected to counterscreens using the methylene blue assay (a secondary assay to measure H2S production) and were assessed for their ability to quench the H2S signal produced by the H2S donor compound GYY4137. Four compounds, hexachlorophene, tannic acid, aurintricarboxylic acid and benserazide showed concentration-dependent CBS inhibitory actions without scavenging H2S released from GYY4137, identifying them as direct CBS inhibitors. Hexachlorophene (IC50: ∼60μM), tannic acid (IC50: ∼40μM) and benserazide (IC50: ∼30μM) were less potent CBS inhibitors than the two reference compounds AOAA (IC50: ∼3μM) and NSC67078 (IC50: ∼1μM), while aurintricarboxylic acid (IC50: ∼3μM) was equipotent with AOAA. The second reference compound NSC67078 not only inhibited the CBS-induced AzMC fluorescence signal (IC50: ∼1μM), but also inhibited with the GYY4137-induced AzMC fluorescence signal with (IC50 of ∼6μM) indicative of scavenging/non-specific effects. Hexachlorophene (IC50: ∼6μM), tannic acid (IC50: ∼20μM), benserazide (IC50: ∼20μM), and NSC67078 (IC50: ∼0.3μM) inhibited HCT116 colon cancer cells proliferation with greater potency than AOAA (IC50: ∼300μM). In contrast, although a CBS inhibitor in the cell-free assay, aurintricarboxylic acid failed to inhibit HCT116 proliferation at lower concentrations, and stimulated cell proliferation at 300μM. Copper-containing compounds present in the libraries, were also found to be potent inhibitors of recombinant CBS; however this activity was due to the CBS inhibitory effect of copper ions themselves. However, copper ions, up to 300μM, did not inhibit HCT116 cell proliferation. Benserazide was only a weak inhibitor of the activity of the other H2S-generating enzymes CSE and 3-MST activity (16% and 35% inhibition at 100μM, respectively) in vitro. Benserazide suppressed HCT116 mitochondrial function and inhibited proliferation of the high CBS-expressing colon cancer cell line HT29, but not the low CBS-expressing line, LoVo. The major benserazide metabolite 2,3,4-trihydroxybenzylhydrazine also inhibited CBS activity and suppressed HCT116 cell proliferation in vitro. In an in vivo study of nude mice bearing human colon cancer cell xenografts, benserazide (50mg/kg/days.q.) prevented tumor growth. In silico docking simulations showed that benserazide binds in the active site of the enzyme and reacts with the PLP cofactor by forming reversible but kinetically stable Schiff base-like adducts with the formyl moiety of pyridoxal. We conclude that benserazide inhibits CBS activity and suppresses colon cancer cell proliferation and bioenergetics in vitro, and tumor growth in vivo. Further pharmacokinetic, pharmacodynamic and preclinical animal studies are necessary to evaluate the potential of repurposing benserazide for the treatment of colorectal cancers.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-18T08:47:32Z
       
  • Integrins in glioblastoma: Still an attractive target'
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Mayra Paolillo, Massimo Serra, Sergio Schinelli
      Integrin-mediated signaling pathways have been found to promote the invasiveness and survival of glioma cells by modifying the brain microenvironment to support the formation of the tumoral niche. A variety of cells in the niche express integrin receptors, including tumor-associated macrophages, fibroblasts, endothelial cells and pericytes. In particular, RGD-binding integrins have been demonstrated to have an important role in the epithelial-mesenchymal transition process, considered the first step in the infiltration of tissue by cancer cells and molecular markers of which have been found in glioma cells. In simultaneous research, Small Molecule Integrin Antagonists (SMIA) yielded initially promising results in in vitro and in vivo studies, leading to clinical trials to test their safety and efficacy in combination with other anticancer drugs in the treatment of several tumor types. The initially high expectations, especially because of their antiangiogenic activity, which appeared to be a winning strategy against GBM, were not confirmed and this cast serious doubts on the real benefits to be gained from the use of SMIA for the treatment of cancer in humans. In this review, we provide an overview of recent findings concerning the functional roles of integrins, especially RGD-binding integrins, in the processes related to glioma cells survival and brain tissue infiltration. These findings disclose a new scenario in which recently developed SMIA might become useful tools to hinder glioblastoma cell dissemination.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-18T08:47:32Z
       
  • Genotype-dependent responsivity to inflammatory pain: A role for TRPV1 in
           the periaqueductal grey
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Manish K. Madasu, Bright N. Okine, Weredeselam M. Olango, Kieran Rea, Róisín Lenihan, Michelle Roche, David P. Finn
      Negative affective state has a significant impact on pain, and genetic background is an important moderating influence on this interaction. The Wistar–Kyoto (WKY) inbred rat strain exhibits a stress-hyperresponsive, anxiety/depressive-like phenotype and also displays a hyperalgesic response to noxious stimuli. Transient receptor potential subfamily V member 1 (TRPV1) within the midbrain periaqueductal grey (PAG) plays a key role in regulating both aversive and nociceptive behaviour. In the present study, we investigated the role of TRPV1 in the sub-columns of the PAG in formalin-evoked nociceptive behaviour in WKY versus Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats. TRPV1 mRNA expression was significantly lower in the dorsolateral (DL) PAG and higher in the lateral (L) PAG of WKY rats, compared with SD counterparts. There were no significant differences in TRPV1 mRNA expression in the ventrolateral (VL) PAG between the two strains. TRPV1 mRNA expression significantly decreased in the DLPAG and increased in the VLPAG of SD, but not WKY rats upon intra-plantar formalin administration. Intra-DLPAG administration of either the TRPV1 agonist capsaicin, or the TRPV1 antagonist 5′-Iodoresiniferatoxin (5′-IRTX), significantly increased formalin-evoked nociceptive behaviour in SD rats, but not in WKY rats. The effects of capsaicin were likely due to TRPV1 desensitisation, given their similarity to the effects of 5′-IRTX. Intra-VLPAG administration of capsaicin or 5′-IRTX reduced nociceptive behaviour in a moderate and transient manner in SD rats, and similar effects were seen with 5′-IRTX in WKY rats. Intra-LPAG administration of 5′-IRTX reduced nociceptive behaviour in a moderate and transient manner in SD rats, but not in WKY rats. These results indicate that modulation of inflammatory pain by TRPV1 in the PAG occurs in a sub-column-specific manner. The data also provide evidence for differences in the expression of TRPV1, and differences in the effects of pharmacological modulation of TRPV1 in specific PAG sub-columns, between WKY and SD rats, suggesting that TRPV1 expression and/or functionality in the PAG plays a role in hyper-responsivity to noxious stimuli in a genetic background prone to negative affect.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-18T08:47:32Z
       
  • Gene polymorphisms as predictors of response to biological therapies in
           psoriasis patients
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Teresa María Linares-Pineda, Marisa Cañadas-Garre, Antonio Sánchez-Pozo, Miguel Ángel Calleja-Hernández
      Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory autoimmune skin disease, characterized by the formation of erythematous scaly plaques on the skin and joints. The therapies for psoriasis are mainly symptomatic and sometimes with poor response. Response among patients is very variable, especially with biological drugs (adalimumab, etarnecept, infliximab and ustekimumab). This variability may be partly explained by the effect of different genetic backgrounds. This has prompted the investigation of many genes, such as FCGR3A, HLA, IL17F, IL23R, PDE3A-SLCO1C1, TNFα and other associated genes, as potential candidates to predict response to the different biological drugs used for the treatment of psoriasis. In this article, we will review the influence of gene polymorphisms investigated to date on response to biological drugs in psoriasis patients.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-18T08:47:32Z
       
  • Novel, selective EPO receptor ligands lacking erythropoietic activity
           reduce infarct size in acute myocardial infarction in rats
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Krisztina Kiss, Csaba Csonka, János Pálóczi, Judit Pipis, Anikó Görbe, Gabriella F. Kocsis, Zsolt Murlasits, Márta Sárközy, Gergő Szűcs, Christopher P. Holmes, Yijun Pan, Ashok Bhandari, Tamás Csont, Mehrdad Shamloo, Kathryn W. Woodburn, Péter Ferdinandy, Péter Bencsik
      Erythropoietin (EPO) has been shown to protect the heart against acute myocardial infarction in pre-clinical studies, however, EPO failed to reduce infarct size in clinical trials and showed significant safety problems. Here, we investigated cardioprotective effects of two selective non-erythropoietic EPO receptor ligand dimeric peptides (AF41676 and AF43136) lacking erythropoietic activity, EPO, and the prolonged half-life EPO analogue, darbepoetin in acute myocardial infarction (AMI) in rats. In a pilot study, EPO at 100U/mL significantly decreased cell death compared to vehicle (33.8±2.3% vs. 40.3±1.5%, p<0.05) in rat neonatal cardiomyocytes subjected to simulated ischemia/reperfusion. In further studies (studies 1–4), in vivo AMI was induced by 30min coronary occlusion and 120min reperfusion in male Wistar rats. Test compounds and positive controls for model validation (B-type natriuretic peptide, BNP or cyclosporine A, CsA) were administered iv. before the onset of reperfusion. Infarct size (IS) was measured by standard TTC staining. In study 1, 5000U/kg EPO reduced infarct size significantly compared to vehicle (45.3±4.8% vs. 59.8±4.5%, p<0.05). In study 2, darbepoetin showed a U-shaped dose-response curve with maximal infarct size-reducing effect at 5μg/kg compared to the vehicle (44.4±5.7% vs. 65.9±2.7%, p<0.01). In study 3, AF41676 showed a U-shaped dose-response curve, where 3mg/kg was the most effective dose compared to the vehicle (24.1±3.9% vs. 44.3±2.5%, p<0.001). The positive control BNP significantly decreased infarct size in studies 1–3 by approximately 35%. In study 4, AF43136 at 10mg/kg decreased infarct size, similarly to the positive control CsA compared to the appropriate vehicle (39.4±5.9% vs. 58.1±5.4% and 45.9±2.4% vs. 63.8±4.1%, p<0.05, respectively). This is the first demonstration that selective, non-erythropoietic EPO receptor ligand dimeric peptides AF41676 and AF43136 administered before reperfusion are able to reduce infarct size in a rat model of AMI. Therefore, non-erythropoietic EPO receptor peptide ligands may be promising cardioprotective agents.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-18T08:47:32Z
       
  • Hydrogen sulfide compensates nitric oxide deficiency in murine corpus
           cavernosum
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Günay Yetik-Anacak, Aycan Dikmen, Ciro Coletta, Emma Mitidieri, Mehmet Dereli, Erminia Donnarumma, Roberta d'Emmanuele di Villa Bianca, Raffaella Sorrentino
      Erectile dysfunction (ED) is considered as a marker for cardiovascular diseases. Nitric oxide (NO) deficiency is the major cause of erectile dysfunction (ED). The role of hydrogen sulfide (H2S) in erection has recently been recognized and is receiving attention as a pharmacological target. Several studies have focused on the effect of H2S on NO-dependent relaxation, but the role of NO on H2S in penile tissue has not been studied yet. Unlike NO, H2S is mainly synthesized from smooth muscle cells rather than endothelial cells. We hypothesized that H2S may compensate for the decreased NO bioavailability and may be beneficial in severe ED where endothelial dysfunction is present. Thus we studied the effect of NO deficiency on H2S formation and vasorelaxation induced by l-cysteine, which is the substrate of the H2S producing enzymes in mice corpus cavernosum (MCC). NO deficiency induced by Nω-Nitro-l-arginine (L-NNA) was confirmed by the inhibition of acetylcholine-induced relaxation. l-cysteine, the substrate for the endogenous H2S production, caused a concentration-dependent relaxation that was reduced by CBS/CSE inhibitor aminooxyacetic acid (AOAA) in MCC strips. L-NNA caused a significant increase in l-cysteine-induced relaxation, and this effect was reversed by AOAA. On the contrary, no change in relaxation to NaHS (exogenous H2S donor) in MCC was observed. L-NNA increased H2S formation stimulated by l-cysteine in wild type MCC but not in CSE−/− mice. In parallel, the expression of both cysthationine γ lyase (CSE) and 3-mercaptopyruvate sulphurtransferase (3-MST) was increased, whereas cysthationine-β synthase (CBS) was decreased in eNOS−/− MCC. We conclude that H2S plays a compensatory role in the absence of NO by enhancing the relaxation induced by endogenous H2S through CSE and 3-MPST in MCC, without altering downstream mechanisms. We suggest that H2S-targeting drugs may provide the maintenance of compensatory treatment in ED patients. This may be more relevant in ED with severe endothelial dysfunction, as H2S is mainly derived from smooth muscle.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-18T08:47:32Z
       
  • Timing and crosstalk of glucocorticoid signaling with cytokines,
           neurotransmitters and growth factors
    • Abstract: Publication date: November 2016
      Source:Pharmacological Research, Volume 113, Part A
      Author(s): Margarita Arango-Lievano, Freddy Jeanneteau
      Glucocorticoid actions are tailored to the organs and cells responding thanks to complex integration with ongoing signaling mediated by cytokines, hormones, neurotransmitters, and growth factors. Disruption of: (1) the amount of signaling molecules available locally; (2) the timing with other signaling pathways; (3) the post-translational modifications on glucocorticoid receptors; and (4) the receptors-interacting proteins within cellular organelles and functional compartments, can modify the sensitivity and efficacy of glucocorticoid responses with implications in physiology, diseases and treatments. Tissue sensitivity to glucocorticoids is sustained by multiple systems that do not operate in isolation. We take the example of the interplay between the glucocorticoid and brain-derived neurotrophic factor signaling pathways to deconstruct context-dependent glucocorticoid responses that play key roles in physiology, diseases and therapies.
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      PubDate: 2016-08-18T08:47:32Z
       
 
 
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