• T Cell Immune Response in Persistent Infection of Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis Virus (LCMV)

      Ou, Rong; Georgia Cancer Center (2004-07)
      The m urine LCMV system provides a ciassic model to study the mechanism of immunological tolerance, an efficient strategy used by virus to establish a persistent infection by selective down-regulation of virus-specific T lymphocytes. High viral burden in the onset o f infection drives responding cells into functional unresposiveness (anergy) that can, be followed by their physical elimination. In this study, the downregulation o f the virus-specific CD8^-T-ceil response was studied during a persistent infection o f adult mice, with particular emphasis on the contribution of the interferon response in promoting host defense, or perforin-, Fas/FasL-, or TN FR l-m ediated cytolysis in regulating T-cell homeostasis. Since LCMV infects a broad range o f host tissues, the functional properties o f virus-specific CD8'^ T cells in different tissues during LCMV infection were also evaluated. Infection of mice deficient in receptor for type I (IFN-a/p), type II (IFN-y), or both type I and II IFNs with LCMV isolates that vary in their capacity to induce T-celi exhaustion, revealed a critical role for IFN -a/p in restricting LCMV spread at the onset o f infection while IFN-y has impact on effector cells. The production o f IF N -a/p and/or IFN-y critically regulates the virus-host balance during the acute phase o f infection, such that a high viral burden drives responding cells into different programs o f exhaustion. Infection o f mice deficient in perferin, FasL or TNFRl with the Docile or Aggressive strains of LCMV revealed comparable kinetics of expansion and functional inactivation o f virusspecific C D ^ T cells in the early phase o f Infection in C57BL/6 controls. However, the data underscore a critical role for these molecules in the persistence o f the virus-specific CD8"‘-T-ceil population once it has become anergic. Study o f the functional properties of virus-specific CD8'^ T cells in different tissues during LCMV infections showed that a centra! role for the viral load in lymphoid tissue in the induction and maintenance of clonal exhaustion. The data strongly suggest that CD8^ T ceils may be differentially regulated in the environments o f lymphoid versus nonlymphoid tissues, and the pattern of T cell exhaustion observed with mice is likely a common feature o f the immune response during chronic infections in humans.
    • T Cell Receptorâ Induced Calcineurin Activation Regulates T Helper Type 2 Cell Development by Modifying the Interleukin 4 Receptor Signaling Complex

      Yamashita, Masakatsu; Katsumata, Makoto; Iwashima, Makio; Kimura, Motoko; Shimizu, Chiori; Kamata, Tohru; Shin, Tahiro; Seki, Nobuo; Suzuki, Seiichi; Taniguchi, Masaru; et al. (2000-06-5)
      The activation of downstream signaling pathways of both T cell receptor (TCR) and interleukin 4 receptor (IL-4R) is essential for T helper type 2 (Th2) cell development, which is central to understanding immune responses against helminthic parasites and in allergic and autoimmune diseases. However, little is known about how these two distinct signaling pathways cooperate with each other to induce Th2 cells. Here, we show that successful Th2 cell development depends on the effectiveness of TCR-induced activation of calcineurin. An inhibitor of calcineurin activation, FK506, inhibited the in vitro anti-TCRâ induced Th2 cell generation in a dose-dependent manner. Furthermore, the development of Th2 cells was significantly impaired in naive T cells from dominant-negative calcineurin Aα transgenic mice, whereas that of Th1 cells was less affected. Efficient calcineurin activation in naive T cells upregulated Janus kinase (Jak)3 transcription and the amount of protein. The generation of Th2 cells induced in vitro by anti-TCR stimulation was inhibited significantly by the presence of Jak3 antisense oligonucleotides, suggesting that the Jak3 upregulation is an important event for the Th2 cell development. Interestingly, signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT)5 became physically and functionally associated with the IL-4R in the anti-TCRâ activated developing Th2 cells that received efficient calcineurin activation, and also in established cloned Th2 cells. In either cell population, the inhibition of STAT5 activation resulted in a diminished IL-4â induced proliferation. Moreover, our results suggest that IL-4â induced STAT5 activation is required for the expansion process of developing Th2 cells. Thus, Th2 cell development is controlled by TCR-mediated activation of the Ca2+/calcineurin pathway, at least in part, by modifying the functional structure of the IL-4R signaling complex.
    • Targeted bisulfite sequencing by solution hybrid selection and massively parallel sequencing

      Lee, Eun-Joon; Pei, Lirong; Srivastava, Gyan; Joshi, Trupti; Kushwaha, Garima; Choi, Jeong-Hyeon; Robertson, Keith D.; Wang, Xinguo; Colbourne, John K.; Zhang, Lu; et al. (2011-10-23)
      We applied a solution hybrid selection approach to the enrichment of CpG islands (CGIs) and promoter sequences from the human genome for targeted high-throughput bisulfite sequencing. A single lane of Illumina sequences allowed accurate and quantitative analysis of ~1 million CpGs in more than 21â 408 CGIs and more than 15â 946 transcriptional regulatory regions. Of the CpGs analyzed, 77â 84% fell on or near capture probe sequences; 69â 75% fell within CGIs. More than 85% of capture probes successfully yielded quantitative DNA methylation information of targeted regions. Differentially methylated regions (DMRs) were identified in the 5â ²-end regulatory regions, as well as the intra- and intergenic regions, particularly in the X-chromosome among the three breast cancer cell lines analyzed. We chose 46 candidate loci (762 CpGs) for confirmation with PCR-based bisulfite sequencing and demonstrated excellent correlation between two data sets. Targeted bisulfite sequencing of three DNA methyltransferase (DNMT) knockout cell lines and the wild-type HCT116 colon cancer cell line revealed a significant decrease in CpG methylation for the DNMT1 knockout and DNMT1, 3B double knockout cell lines, but not in DNMT3B knockout cell line. We demonstrated the targeted bisulfite sequencing approach to be a powerful method to uncover novel aberrant methylation in the cancer epigenome. Since all targets were captured and sequenced as a pool through a series of single-tube reactions, this method can be easily scaled up to deal with a large number of samples.
    • Targeting HSP90 for cancer therapy

      Mahalingam, D; Swords, R; Carew, Jennifer S; Nawrocki, S T; Bhalla, Kapil N.; Giles, F J; GHSU Cancer Center (2009-04-28)
      Heat-shock proteins (HSPs) are molecular chaperones that regulate protein folding to ensure correct conformation and translocation and to avoid protein aggregation. Heat-shock proteins are increased in many solid tumours and haematological malignancies. Many oncogenic proteins responsible for the transformation of cells to cancerous forms are client proteins of HSP90. Targeting HSP90 with chemical inhibitors would degrade these oncogenic proteins, and thus serve as useful anticancer agents. This review provides an overview of the HSP chaperone machinery and the structure and function of HSP90. We also highlight the key oncogenic proteins that are regulated by HSP90 and describe how inhibition of HSP90 could alter the activity of multiple signalling proteins, receptors and transcriptional factors implicated in carcinogenesis.
    • The temporal and spatial expression pattern of the LGI1 epilepsy predisposition gene during mouse embryonic cranial development

      Silva, Jeane; Wang, Guanghu; Cowell, John K.; GHSU Cancer Center; Department of Neurology; Institute of Molecular Medicine and Genetics (2011-05-13)
      Background: Mutations in the LGI1 gene predispose to a rare, hereditary form of temporal epilepsy. Currently, little is known about the temporal and spatial expression pattern of Lgi1 during normal embryogenesis and so to define this more clearly we used a transgenic mouse line that expresses GFP under the control of Lgi1 cis-regulatory elements.
    • Temporal Dynamics of Distinct CA1 Cell Populations during Unconscious State Induced by Ketamine

      Kuang, Hui; Lin, Longnian; Tsien, Joe Z.; Brain & Behavior Discovery Institute (2010-12-8)
      Ketamine is a widely used dissociative anesthetic which can induce some psychotic-like symptoms and memory deficits in some patients during the post-operative period. To understand its effects on neural population dynamics in the brain, we employed large-scale in vivo ensemble recording techniques to monitor the activity patterns of simultaneously recorded hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells and various interneurons during several conscious and unconscious states such as awake rest, running, slow wave sleep, and ketamine-induced anesthesia. Our analyses reveal that ketamine induces distinct oscillatory dynamics not only in pyramidal cells but also in at least seven different types of CA1 interneurons including putative basket cells, chandelier cells, bistratified cells, and O-LM cells. These emergent unique oscillatory dynamics may very well reflect the intrinsic temporal relationships within the CA1 circuit. It is conceivable that systematic characterization of network dynamics may eventually lead to better understanding of how ketamine induces unconsciousness and consequently alters the conscious mind.
    • Text Mining and Digital Humanities: Quantitative Analysis of African American Poetry

      Jenkins, Diamond; Brown, Taylohr; Quiller, Walter; Katherine Reese Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences; Williams, Seretha (2015-09-11)
      “Text Mining and Digital Humanities: Quantitative Analysis of African American Poetry uses quantitative and qualitative analysis to formulate research questions about African American poetry. In this project, we use text-mining software to determine whether distinctive word patterns can be used to quantify the characteristics of African American poetry. For the purposes of this study, we rejected the notion that Black poetry is defined as poetry written by black authors. Instead, we argue, the distinctions in black poems should be specific enough to be classified in a separate category from other kinds of literature such as American literature, and we assert the definition of black poetry should not reduce “blackness”- what we describe as the shared cultural traditions or practices of African Americans- to certain experiences or tropes such as the rural, folk black experience. We selected Langston Hughes and the Harlem Renaissance as the earliest historical point for our inquiry, and we used Margaret Walker, Gwendolyn Brooks, Maya Angelou, and Alice Walker, poets whom Hughes directly influenced, as comparisons. We created a text database of the collected poems of the five authors and assessed the frequency of words/phrases related to three main categories that recur in the scholarship of black poetry: memory, identity, and music. After running our text data through mining software and looking specifically for words coded as memory, identity, and music variables, we were able to support our initial claim that quantitative analysis can be used as to support qualitative assertions of black poetry as a distinct genre of American poetry. Begin Time: 08:02 End Time: 37:58
    • Text Mining and Digital Humanities: Quantitative Analysis of African American Poetry

      Brown, Taylohr; Jenkins, Diamond; Quiller, Walter; Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences (2015-08-07)
      “Text Mining and Digital Humanities: Quantitative Analysis of African American Poetry” uses quantitative and qualitative analysis to formulate research questions about African American poetry. In this project, we use text-mining software to determine whether distinctive word patterns can be used to quantify the characteristics of African American poetry. For the purposes of this study, we rejected the notion that Black poetry is defined as poetry written by black authors. Instead, we argue, the distinctions in black poems should be specific enough to be classified in a separate category from other kinds of literature such as American literature, and we assert the definition of black poetry should not reduce “blackness”- what we describe as the shared cultural traditions or practices of African Americans- to certain experiences or tropes such as the rural, folk black experience. We selected Langston Hughes and the Harlem Renaissance as the earliest historical point for our inquiry, and we used Margaret Walker, Gwendolyn Brooks, Maya Angelou, and Alice Walker, poets whom Hughes directly influenced, as comparisons. We created a text database of the collected poems of the five authors and assessed the frequency of words/phrases related to three main categories that recur in the scholarship of black poetry: memory, identity, and music. After running our text data through mining software and looking specifically for words coded as memory, identity, and music variables, we were able to support our initial claim that quantitative analysis can be used as to support qualitative assertions of black poetry as a distinct genre of American poetry.
    • Toward integrative cancer immunotherapy: targeting the tumor microenvironment

      Emens, Leisha A; Silverstein, Samuel C; Khleif, Samir; Marincola, Francesco M; Galon, Jérôme; GHSU Cancer Center (2012-04-10)
      The development of cancer has historically been attributed to genomic alterations of normal host cells. Accordingly, the aim of most traditional cancer therapies has been to destroy the transformed cells themselves. There is now widespread appreciation that the progressive growth and metastatic spread of cancer cells requires the cooperation of normal host cells (endothelial cells, fibroblasts, other mesenchymal cells, and immune cells), both local to, and at sites distant from, the site at which malignant transformation occurs. It is the balance of these cellular interactions that both determines the natural history of the cancer, and influences its response to therapy. This active tumor-host dynamic has stimulated interest in the tumor microenvironment as a key target for both cancer diagnosis and therapy. Recent data has demonstrated both that the presence of CD8+ T cells within a tumor is associated with a good prognosis, and that the eradication of all malignantly transformed cells within a tumor requires that the intra-tumoral concentration of cytolytically active CD8+ effector T cells remain above a critical concentration until every tumor cell has been killed. These findings have stimulated two initiatives in the field of cancer immunotherapy that focus on the tumor microenvironment. The first is the development of the immune score as part of the routine diagnostic and prognostic evaluation of human cancers, and the second is the development of combinatorial immune-based therapies that reduce tumor-associated immune suppression to unleash pre-existing or therapeutically-induced tumor immunity. In support of these efforts, the Society for the Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) is sponsoring a workshop entitled "Focus on the Target: The Tumor Microenvironment" to be held October 24-25, 2012 in Bethesda, Maryland. This meeting should support development of the immune score, and result in a position paper highlighting opportunities for the development of integrative cancer immunotherapies that sculpt the tumor microenvironment to promote definitive tumor rejection.
    • Towards Curative Cancer Immunotherapy: Overcoming Posttherapy Tumor Escape

      Zhou, Gang; Levitsky, Hyam; GHSU Cancer Center; Department of Medicine (2012-05-31)
      The past decade has witnessed the evolvement of cancer immunotherapy as an increasingly effective therapeutic modality, evidenced by the approval of two immune-based products by the FDA, that is, the cancer vaccine Provenge (sipuleucel-T) for prostate cancer and the antagonist antibody against cytotoxic T-lymphocyte antigen-4 (CTLA-4) ipilimumab for advanced melanoma. In addition, the clinical evaluations of a variety of promising immunotherapy drugs are well under way. Benefiting from more efficacious immunotherapeutic agents and treatment strategies, a number of recent clinical studies have achieved unprecedented therapeutic outcomes in some patients with certain types of cancers. Despite these advances, however, the efficacy of most cancer immunotherapies currently under clinical development has been modest. A recurring scenario is that therapeutic maneuvers initially led to measurable antitumor immune responses in cancer patients but ultimately failed to improve patient outcomes. It is increasingly recognized that tumor cells can antagonize therapy-induced immune attacks through a variety of counterregulation mechanisms, which represent a fundamental barrier to the success of cancer immunotherapy. Herein we summarize the findings from some recent preclinical and clinical studies, focusing on how tumor cells advance their survival and expansion by hijacking therapy-induced immune effector mechanisms that would otherwise mediate their destruction.
    • Translating Evidence-based Assessment into Educational Practice: Building a DREAM

      Palladino, Christie; Bodie, B; Elam, Rachel; Villarosa, M; West, L; Wildermuth, K; Stepleman, Lara M.; Education Discovery Institute; Medical College of Georiga; Georgia Health Sciences University (Georgia Health Sciences University, 2011)
      To create DREAM, the Directory and Repository of Educational Assessment Measures, as a collaboration between the GHSU Education Discovery Institute and MedEdPORTAL. To provide educators and medical education researchers with a “one-stop shop” assessment measure database that is accessible to the public. To feature expert analyses as part of Critical Synthesis Packages for each non-proprietary measure.
    • TRENDS IN COLORECTAL CANCER INCIDENCE RATES IN GEORGIA BETWEEN 2000-2012

      De, Subhendu; Yoo, Wonsuk; Georgia Regents University (2015-07)
    • Trends in HIV testing among adults in Georgia: analysis of the 2011-2015 BRFSS data

      Ansa, Benjamin E.; Smith, Selina A.; Chung, Yunmi; White, Sashia; Augusta University (2017-04)
    • TRPM8 mechanism of autonomic nerve response to cold in respiratory airway.

      Xing, Hong; Ling, Jennifer X; Chen, Meng; Johnson, Richard D; Tominaga, Makoto; Wang, Cong-Yi; Gu, Jianguo; Center for Biotechnology and Genomic Medicine (2008-06-18)
      Breathing cold air without proper temperature exchange can induce strong respiratory autonomic responses including cough, airway constriction and mucosal secretion, and can exacerbate existing asthma conditions and even directly trigger an asthma attack. Vagal afferent fiber is thought to be involved in the cold-induced respiratory responses through autonomic nerve reflex. However, molecular mechanisms by which vagal afferent fibers are excited by cold remain unknown. Using retrograde labeling, immunostaining, calcium imaging, and electrophysiological recordings, here we show that a subpopulation of airway vagal afferent nerves express TRPM8 receptors and that activation of TRPM8 receptors by cold excites these airway autonomic nerves. Thus activation of TRPM8 receptors may provoke autonomic nerve reflex to increase airway resistance. This putative autonomic response may be associated with cold-induced exacerbation of asthma and other pulmonary disorders, making TRPM8 receptors a possible target for prevention of cold-associated respiratory disorders.
    • Two-year maintenance of increased alcohol and drug screening and brief intervention rates

      Johnson, J. Aaron; Howell, R. K.; Augusta University (2016-04)
    • Type-2 diabetes-induced changes in vascular extracellular matrix gene expression: relation to vessel size.

      Song, WeiWei; Ergul, Adviye; Vascular Biology Center (2006-04-10)
      BACKGROUND: Hyperglycemia-induced changes in vascular wall structure contribute to the pathogenesis of diabetic microvascular and macrovascular complications. Matrix metalloproteinases (MMP), a family of proteolytic enzymes that degrade extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins, are essential for vascular remodeling. We have shown that endothelin-1 (ET-1) mediates increased MMP activity and associated vascular remodeling in Type 2 diabetes. However, the effect of Type 2 diabetes and/or ET-1 on the regulation of ECM and MMP gene expression in different vascular beds remains unknown. METHODS: Aorta and mesenteric artery samples were isolated from control, Type 2 diabetic Goto-Kakizaki (GK) rats and GK rats treated with ETA antagonist ABT-627. Gene expression profile of MMP-2, MMP-9, MT1-MMP, fibronectin, procollagen type 1, c-fos and c-jun, were determined by quantitative real-time (qRT) PCR. In addition, aortic gene expression profile was evaluated by an ECM & Adhesion Molecules pathway specific microarray approach. RESULTS: Analysis of the qRT-PCR data demonstrated a significant increase in mRNA levels of MMPs and ECM proteins as compared to control animals after 6 weeks of mild diabetes. Furthermore, these changes were comparable in aorta and mesentery samples. In contrast, treatment with ETA antagonist prevented diabetes-induced changes in expression of MMPs and procollagen type 1 in mesenteric arteries but not in aorta. Microarray analysis provided evidence that 27 extracellular matrix genes were differentially regulated in diabetes. Further qRT-PCR with selected 7 genes confirmed the microarray data. CONCLUSION: These results suggest that the expression of both matrix scaffold protein and matrix degrading MMP genes are altered in macro and microvascular beds in Type 2 diabetes. ETA antagonism restores the changes in gene expression in the mesenteric bed but not in aorta suggesting that ET-1 differentially regulates microvascular gene expression in Type 2 diabetes.
    • Unique phenotype in a patient with CHARGE syndrome

      Jain, Shobhit; Kim, Hyung-Goo; Lacbawan, Felicitas; Meliciani, Irene; Wenzel, Wolfgang; Kurth, Ingo; Sharma, Josefina; Schoeneman, Morris; Ten, Svetlana; Layman, Lawrence C; et al. (2011-10-13)
      CHARGE is a phenotypically heterogeneous autosomal dominant disorder recognized as a cohesive syndrome since the identification of CHD7 as a genetic etiology. Classic features include: Coloboma, Heart defects, Atresia choanae, Retarded growth and development, Genitourinary abnormalities, and Ear anomalies and/or deafness. With greater accessibility to genetic analysis, a wider spectrum of features are emerging, and overlap with disorders such as DiGeorge syndrome, Kallmann syndrome, and Hypoparathyroidism Sensorineural Deafness and Renal Disease syndrome, is increasingly evident. We present a patient with a unique manifestation of CHARGE syndrome, including primary hypoparathyroidism and a limb anomaly; to our knowledge, he is also the first CHARGE subject reported with bilateral multicystic dysplastic kidneys. Furthermore, with structural modeling and murine expression studies, we characterize a putative CHD7 G744S missense mutation. Our report continues to expand the CHARGE phenotype and highlights that stringent fulfillment of conventional criteria should not strictly guide genetic analysis.
    • Use of a microscope stage-mounted Nickel-63 microirradiator for real-time observation of the DNA double-strand break response.

      Cao, Zhen; Kuhne, Wendy W.; Steeb, Jennifer; Merkley, Mark A.; Zhou, Yunfeng; Janata, Jiri; Dynan, William S.; Institute of Molecular Medicine and Genetics (2010-08-12)
      Eukaryotic cells begin to assemble discrete, nucleoplasmic repair foci within seconds after the onset of exposure to ionizing radiation. Real-time imaging of this assembly has the potential to further our understanding of the effects of medical and environmental radiation exposure. Here, we describe a microirradiation system for targeted delivery of ionizing radiation to individual cells without the need for specialized facilities. The system consists of a 25-micron diameter electroplated Nickel-63 electrode, enveloped in a glass capillary and mounted in a micromanipulator. Because of the low energy of the beta radiation and the minute total amount of isotope present on the tip, the device can be safely handled with minimum precautions. We demonstrate the use of this system for tracking assembly of individual repair foci in real time in live U2OS human osteosarcoma cells. Results indicate that there is a subset of foci that appear and disappear rapidly, before a plateau level is reached approximately 30 min post-exposure. This subset of foci would not have been evident without real-time observation. The development of a microirradiation system that is compatible with a standard biomedical laboratory expands the potential for real-time investigation of the biological effects of ionizing radiation.