ResearchPad - ethanol https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Multipurpose chemical liquid sensing applications by microwave approach]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_7700 In this work, a novel sensor based on printed circuit board (PCB) microstrip rectangular patch antenna is proposed to detect different ratios of ethanol alcohol in wines and isopropyl alcohol in disinfectants. The proposed sensor was designed by finite integration technique (FIT) based high-frequency electromagnetic solver (CST) and was fabricated by Proto Mat E33 machine. To implement the numerical investigations, dielectric properties of the samples were first measured by a dielectric probe kit then uploaded into the simulation program. Results showed a linear shifting in the resonant frequency of the sensor when the dielectric constant of the samples were changed due to different concentrations of ethanol alcohol and isopropyl alcohol. A good agreement was observed between the calculated and measured results, emphasizing the usability of dielectric behavior as an input sensing agent. It was concluded that the proposed sensor is viable for multipurpose chemical sensing applications.

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<![CDATA[Aspirin-triggered resolvin D1 attenuates PDGF-induced vascular smooth muscle cell migration via the cyclic adenosine monophosphate/protein kinase A (cAMP/PKA) pathway]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db50ab0ee8fa60bdc0e7

Background and objectives

Resolvin D1 (RvD1) is a specialized pro-resolving lipid mediator that has been previously shown to attenuate vascular smooth muscle cell (VSMC) migration, a key process in the development of intimal hyperplasia. We sought to investigate the role of the cAMP/PKA pathway in mediating the effects of the aspirin-triggered epimer 17R-RvD1 (AT-RvD1) on VSMC migration.

Methods

VSMCs were harvested from human saphenous veins. VSMCs were analyzed for intracellular cAMP levels and PKA activity after exposure to AT-RvD1. Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)-induced migration and cytoskeletal changes in VSMCs were observed through scratch, Transwell, and cell shape assays in the presence or absence of a PKA inhibitor (Rp-8-Br-cAMP). Further investigation of the pathways involved in AT-RvD1 signaling was performed by measuring Rac1 activity, vasodilator stimulated phosphoprotein (VASP) phosphorylation and paxillin translocation. Finally, we examined the role of RvD1 receptors (GPR32 and ALX/FPR2) in AT-RvD1 induced effects on VSMC migration and PKA activity.

Results

Treatment with AT-RvD1 induced a significant increase in cAMP levels and PKA activity in VSMCs at 5 minutes and 30 minutes, respectively. AT-RvD1 attenuated PDGF-induced VSMC migration and cytoskeletal rearrangements. These effects were attenuated by the PKA inhibitor Rp-8-Br-cAMP, suggesting cAMP/PKA involvement. Treatment of VSMC with AT-RvD1 inhibited PDGF-stimulated Rac1 activity, increased VASP phosphorylation, and attenuated paxillin localization to focal adhesions; these effects were negated by the addition of Rp-8-Br-cAMP. The effects of AT-RvD1 on VSMC migration and PKA activity were attenuated by blocking ALX/FPR2, suggesting an important role of this G-protein coupled receptor.

Conclusions

Our results suggest that AT-RvD1 attenuates PDGF-induced VSMC migration via ALX/FPR2 and cAMP/PKA. Interference with Rac1, VASP and paxillin function appear to mediate the downstream effects of AT-RvD1 on VSMC migration.

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<![CDATA[Chitosan-propolis nanoparticle formulation demonstrates anti-bacterial activity against Enterococcus faecalis biofilms]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db50ab0ee8fa60bdc122

Propolis obtained from bee hives is a natural substance with antimicrobial properties. It is limited by its insolubility in aqueous solutions; hence ethanol and ethyl acetate extracts of Malaysian propolis were prepared. Both the extracts displayed antimicrobial and anti-biofilm properties against Enterococcus faecalis, a common bacterium associated with hospital-acquired infections. High performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analysis of propolis revealed the presence of flavonoids like kaempferol and pinocembrin. This study investigated the role of propolis developed into nanoparticles with chitosan for its antimicrobial and anti-biofilm properties against E. faecalis. Bacteria that grow in a slimy layer of biofilm are resistant to penetration by antibacterial agents. The use of nanoparticles in medicine has received attention recently due to better bioavailability, enhanced penetrative capacity and improved efficacy. A chitosan-propolis nanoformulation was chosen based on ideal physicochemical properties such as particle size, zeta potential, polydispersity index, encapsulation efficiency and the rate of release of the active ingredients. This formulation inhibited E. faecalis biofilm formation and reduced the number of bacteria in the biofilm by ~90% at 200 μg/ml concentration. When tested on pre-formed biofilms, the formulation reduced bacterial number in the biofilm by ~40% and ~75% at 200 and 300 μg/ml, respectively. The formulation not only reduced bacterial numbers, but also physically disrupted the biofilm structure as observed by scanning electron microscopy. Treatment of biofilms with chitosan-propolis nanoparticles altered the expression of biofilm-associated genes in E. faecalis. The results of this study revealed that chitosan-propolis nanoformulation can be deemed as a potential anti-biofilm agent in resisting infections involving biofilm formation like chronic wounds and surgical site infections.

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<![CDATA[Identification of soil bacteria capable of utilizing a corn ethanol fermentation byproduct]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c8c1951d5eed0c484b4d3e6

A commercial corn ethanol production byproduct (syrup) was used as a bacterial growth medium with the long-term aim to repurpose the resulting microbial biomass as a protein supplement in aquaculture feeds. Anaerobic batch reactors were used to enrich for soil bacteria metabolizing the syrup as the sole nutrient source over an eight-day period with the goal of obtaining pure cultures of facultative organisms from the reactors. Amplification of the V4 variable region of the 16S rRNA gene was performed using barcoded primers to track the succession of microbes enriched for during growth on the syrup. The resulting PCR products were sequenced using Illumina MiSeq protocols, analyzed via the program QIIME, and the alpha-diversity was calculated. Seven bacterial families were the most prevalent in the bioreactor community after eight days of enrichment: Clostridiaceae, Alicyclobacillaceae, Ruminococcaceae, Burkholderiaceae, Bacillaceae, Veillonellaceae, and Enterobacteriaceae. Pure culture isolates obtained from the reactors, and additional laboratory stock strains, capable of facultative growth, were grown aerobically in microtiter plates with the syrup substrate to monitor growth yield. Reactor isolates of interest were identified at a species level using the full 16S rRNA gene and other biomarkers. Bacillus species, commonly used as probiotics in aquaculture, showed the highest biomass yield of the monocultures examined. Binary combinations of monocultures yielded no apparent synergism between organisms, suggesting competition for nutrients instead of cooperative metabolite conversion.

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<![CDATA[Isolation and identification of aroma producing strain with esterification capacity from yellow water]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6f1540d5eed0c48467af8c

Kaoliang is a refreshing fragranced type of Chinese spirits with slight apple fragrance that comes from ethyl acetate (EA). Special aromas are produced by esterification microorganisms, which affect the taste and quality of the wine. In this study, new yeast strains were isolated from yellow water, a by-product during fermentation process. Meanwhile, the optimal culture condition was determined for its growth and EA production. Three new strains, Kazachstaniaexigua, Candida humilis and Saccharomyces cerevisiae were identified from yellow water. Among these strains, S. cerevisiae S5 was the new and dominant strain. Results from response surface methodology showed that S. cerevisiae S5 produced 161.88 ppm of EA, in the medium with 4.91% yeast extract, 9.82% peptone, and 20.91% glucose after 96 hours of cultivation at 27.53°C. GC analysis showed that aroma compounds, such as EA, isoamyl acetate and 2-phenylethanol increased from the sample of optimal condition when compared to the one from initial fermentation condition.

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<![CDATA[Raman spectroscopic evaluation of human serum using metal plate and 785- and 1064-nm excitation lasers]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c70675fd5eed0c4847c6f69

In this study, we utilized a stainless steel (SUS304) plate for measuring the Raman scattering spectra of body fluid samples. Using this stainless steel plate, we recorded the Raman scattering spectra of 99.5% ethanol and human serum samples by performing irradiation with 785- and 1064-nm lasers. Raman scattering spectra with intensities equal to or greater than those reported previously were obtained. In addition, the Raman scattering spectra acquired using the 1064-nm laser were less influenced by autofluorescence than those obtained via use of the shorter-wavelength laser. Moreover, the shapes of the spectra did not show any dependence on integration time, and denaturation of the samples was minimal. Our method, based on 1064-nm laser and the stainless steel plate, provides performance equal to or better than the methods reported thus far for the measurement of Raman scattering spectra from liquid samples. This method can be employed to rapidly evaluate the components of serum in liquid form without using surface-enhanced Raman scattering.

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<![CDATA[RedCom: A strategy for reduced metabolic modeling of complex microbial communities and its application for analyzing experimental datasets from anaerobic digestion]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5df347d5eed0c48458108e

Constraint-based modeling (CBM) is increasingly used to analyze the metabolism of complex microbial communities involved in ecology, biomedicine, and various biotechnological processes. While CBM is an established framework for studying the metabolism of single species with linear stoichiometric models, CBM of communities with balanced growth is more complicated, not only due to the larger size of the multi-species metabolic network but also because of the bilinear nature of the resulting community models. Moreover, the solution space of these community models often contains biologically unrealistic solutions, which, even with model linearization and under application of certain objective functions, cannot easily be excluded. Here we present RedCom, a new approach to build reduced community models in which the metabolisms of the participating organisms are represented by net conversions computed from the respective single-species networks. By discarding (single-species) net conversions that violate a minimality criterion in the exchange fluxes, it is ensured that unrealistic solutions in the community model are excluded where a species altruistically synthesizes large amounts of byproducts (instead of biomass) to fulfill the requirements of other species. We employed the RedCom approach for modeling communities of up to nine organisms involved in typical degradation steps of anaerobic digestion in biogas plants. Compared to full (bilinear and linearized) community models, we found that the reduced community models obtained with RedCom are not only much smaller but allow, also in the largest model with nine species, extensive calculations required to fully characterize the solution space and to reveal key properties of communities with maximum methane yield and production rates. Furthermore, the predictive power of the reduced community models is significantly larger because they predict much smaller ranges of feasible community compositions and exchange fluxes still being consistent with measurements obtained from enrichment cultures. For an enrichment culture for growth on ethanol, we also used metaproteomic data to further constrain the solution space of the community models. Both model and proteomic data indicated a dominance of acetoclastic methanogens (Methanosarcinales) and Desulfovibrionales being the least abundant group in this microbial community.

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<![CDATA[Optimization of a polyphenol extraction method for sweet orange pulp (Citrus sinensis L.) to identify phenolic compounds consumed from sweet oranges]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5b5293d5eed0c4842bcbe6

The consumption of sweet oranges has been linked to several health benefits, many of which are attributed to hesperidin, a flavanone that is present in high amounts in these fruits. However, other phenolic compounds can contribute to the bioactivity of sweet orange. To link those effects to their phenolic profile, the complete characterization of the phenolic profile is mandatory. Although many studies have profiled the phenolic composition of orange juices, their pulps, which retain phenolic compounds, are overlooked. This fact is particularly relevant because dietary guidelines recommend the consumption of whole fruits. Therefore, this study aimed to develop a specific method for the optimal extraction of phenolics from orange pulp and to use this method to characterize these fruits grown at different locations by HPLC-ESI-MS/MS. The extraction conditions that reported the highest total polyphenol content (TPC) and hesperidin contents were 20 mL/g, 55 °C, and 90% methanol. The extraction time and number of sequential steps were further evaluated and optimized as 20 min and two extraction steps, respectively. Although lower extraction rates were achieved when using ethanol as the extraction solvent, high TPC and hesperidin yields were obtained, suggesting the potential use of this methodology to produce phenolic-rich extracts for the food industry. By applying the optimized methodology and analyzing the extracts by HPLC-ESI-MS/MS, geographic cultivation regions were demonstrated to affect the phenolic profiles of oranges. In short, we developed a quick, easy-to-perform methodology that can be used to extract orange phenolics from pulp for their identification and quantification and to evaluate the factors that affect the phenolic profile in sweet orange pulps.

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<![CDATA[Cilostazol protects hepatocytes against alcohol-induced apoptosis via activation of AMPK pathway]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c59fed6d5eed0c48413570c

Alcoholic liver disease (ALD) is a worldwide health problem and hepatocyte apoptosis has been associated with the development/progression of ALD. However, no definite effective pharmacotherapy for ALD is currently available. Cilostazol, a selective type III phosphodiesterase inhibitor has been shown to protect hepatocytes from ethanol-induced apoptosis. In the present study, the underlying mechanisms for the protective effects of cilostazol were examined. Primary rat hepatocytes were treated with ethanol in the presence or absence of cilostazol. Cell viability and intracellular cAMP were measured. Apoptosis was detected by Hoechst staining, TUNEL assay, and caspase-3 activity assay. The roles of cAMP and AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) pathways in the action of CTZ were explored using pharmacological inhibitors and siRNAs. Liver from mice received ethanol (5 g/kg body weight) by oral gavage following cilostazol treatment intraperitoneally was obtained for measurement of apoptosis and activation of AMPK pathway. Cilostazol inhibited ethanol-induced hepatocyte apoptosis and potentiated the increases in cAMP level induced by forskolin. However, the anti-apoptotic effect of cilostazol was not reversed by an inhibitor of adenylyl cyclase. Interestingly, cilostazol activated AMPK and increased the level of LC3-II, a marker of autophagy. The inhibition of AMPK abolished the effects of cilostazol on LC3-II expression and apoptosis. Moreover, the inhibition of LKB1 and CaMKK2, upstream kinases of AMPK, dampened cilostazol-inhibited apoptosis as well as AMPK activation. In conclusion, cilostazol protected hepatocytes from apoptosis induced by ethanol mainly via AMPK pathway which is regulated by both LKB1 and CaMKK2. Our results suggest that cilostazol may have potential as a promising therapeutic drug for treatment of ALD.

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<![CDATA[Dissecting the pathways coordinating patterning and growth by plant boundary domains]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c536af0d5eed0c484a47c21

Boundary domains play important roles during morphogenesis in plants and animals, but how they contribute to patterning and growth coordination in plants is not understood. The CUC genes determine the boundary domains in the aerial part of the plants and, in particular, they have a conserved role in regulating leaf complexity across Angiosperms. Here, we used tooth formation at the Arabidopsis leaf margin controlled by the CUC2 transcription factor to untangle intertwined events during boundary-controlled morphogenesis in plants. Combining conditional restoration of CUC2 function with morphometrics as well as quantification of gene expression and hormone signaling, we first established that tooth morphogenesis involves a patterning phase and a growth phase. These phases can be separated, as patterning requires CUC2 while growth can occur independently of CUC2. Next, we show that CUC2 acts as a trigger to promote growth through the activation of three functional relays. In particular, we show that KLUH acts downstream of CUC2 to modulate auxin response and that expressing KLUH can compensate for deficient CUC2 expression during tooth growth. Together, we reveal a genetic and molecular network that allows coordination of patterning and growth by CUC2-defined boundaries during morphogenesis at the leaf margin.

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<![CDATA[Chemical composition, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and cytotoxic activities of Opuntia stricta cladodes]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c59feb5d5eed0c48413531a

Background

The Opuntia spp. have been used in traditional medicine for many centuries. It is used in the management of diseases that involves oxidative stress, especially diabetes, obesity and cancer. Opuntia stricta (Haw) is one of the relatively unknown species in South Africa where it is regarded more as a weed. Because of this, not much is known about its chemical composition.

Aim

To determine the chemical composition, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and cytotoxic activities of Opuntia stricta cladodes.

Methods

The phytochemical composition of acetone, aqueous and ethanol extract of cladodes of Opuntia stricta (Haw), as well as the vitamins A, C and E of its dried weight cladodes and the antioxidant activities, were evaluated using standard in vitro methods. The anti-inflammatory and cytotoxic activities were evaluated using cell-based assays. The phytochemical composition and vitamins were determined spectrophotometrically, while the antioxidant activities were determined by DPPH, nitric oxide, hydrogen peroxide scavenging activity and phosphomolybdenum (total) antioxidant activity. Anti-inflammatory activity was determined using RAW 264.7 cells, while cytotoxicity was determined using U937 cells.

Results

The phytochemical composition showed a significant difference in the various extracts. The total phenolics were higher than other phytochemicals in all the extracts used. All the extracts displayed antioxidant activity, while most of the extracts showed anti-inflammatory activity. Only one extract showed cytotoxicity, and it was mild.

Conclusion

The results show that the Opuntia stricta is rich in polyphenolic compounds and has good antioxidant activity as well as anti-inflammatory activities.

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<![CDATA[Discovery of potential ovicidal natural products using metabolomics]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c79afcfd5eed0c4841e37b2

Plant extracts are a potential source of new compounds for nematode control and may be an excellent alternative for the control gastrointestinal nematodes that are resistant to conventional anthelmintics. However, research involving natural products is a complex process. The main challenge is the identification of bioactive compounds. Online analytical techniques with universal detectors, such as high-performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS), together with metabolomics could enable the fast, accurate evaluation of a massive amount of data, constituting a viable option for the identification of active compounds in plant extracts. This study focused on the evaluation of the ovicidal activity of ethanol extracts from 17 plants collected from the Pantanal wetland in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil, against eggs of Haemonchus placei using the egg hatchability test. The ethanol extracts were obtained using accelerated solvent extraction. The data on ovicidal activity, mass spectrometry and metabolomics were evaluated using HPLC-DAD-MS, partial least squares regression analysis (PLS-DA) and a correlation map (univariate correlation analyses) to detect compounds that have a positive correlation with biological activity. Among the ten metabolites with the best correlation coefficients, six were phenylpropanoids, two were triterpene saponins, one was a brevipolide, and one was a flavonoid. Combinations of metabolites with high ovicidal action were also identified, such as phenylpropanoids combined with the triterpene saponins and the flavonoid, flavonoids combined with iridoid and phenylpropanoids, and saponins combined with phenylpropanoid. The positive correlation between classes of compounds in plants belonging to different genera and biological activity (as previously identified in the literature) reinforces the robustness of the statistical data and demonstrates the efficacy of this method for the selection of bioactive compounds without the need for isolation and reevaluation. The proposed method also enables the determination of synergism among the classes, which would be impracticable using traditional methods. The present investigation demonstrates that the metabolomic technique was efficient at detecting secondary metabolites with ovicidal activity against H. placei. Thus, the use of metabolomics can be a tool to accelerate and simplify bioprospecting research with plant extracts in veterinary parasitology.

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<![CDATA[Antiparasitic activities of hydroethanolic extracts of Ipomoea imperati (Vahl) Griseb. (Convolvulaceae)]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c57e6e9d5eed0c484ef42ea

Ipomoea imperati is widely used in tropical areas to treat several pathological conditions. The effect of this plant against parasitic species has not been investigated even being used for this purpose in the Brazilian northeastern. This study aimed to evaluate the anthelmintic and acaricide potential of a hydroethanolic extract of I. imperati leaves and stolons. I. imperati leaves and stolons were crushed and subjected to maceration in ethanol 70% (v/v), after which the solvent was removed using a rotary evaporator. The chromatographic profile of the extract was obtained by UV Spectrum high-performance liquid chromatography and compounds were identified by liquid chromatography/electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry. Identification of the compounds present in the extract was achieved by comparing their retention times and UV spectra with data in the literature. Anthelmintic activity was evaluated by larval exsheathment inhibition assays using Haemonchus contortus larvae and five concentrations of each extract ranging from 0.07 to 1.2 mg/mL. Acaricide activity was evaluated via larval immersion of Rhipicephalus microplus in eight concentrations of each extract ranging from 5.0 to 25.0 mg/mL. Live and dead larvae were counted after 24 hours. The median inhibitory concentration (IC50) for H. contortus larvae and the median lethal concentration (LC50) for R. microplus larvae were calculated. Twelve compounds were observed in the hydroethanolic extract of leaves, with a predominance of the aglycone form of flavonoids and tannins. This extract was effective against H. contortus larvae, presenting an average inhibitory concentration of 0.22 mg/mL, but showed no activity toward R. microplus larvae. The stolon hydroethanolic extract presented 11 compounds, with phenolic acids and glycosylated flavonoids prevailing. This extract showed low activity on R. microplus and no effect on inhibiting H. contortus larval exsheathment at the concentrations tested. This study is the first to assess the anthelmintic and acaricidal activities of I. imperati. Data reported confirm promising potential of I. imperati leaves hydroethanolic extract against H. contortus. This effect could be due to its secondary compounds presents in this extract, such as procyanidin, kaempferol, isoquercitrin and rutin.

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<![CDATA[Optimization of extraction of antioxidant polysaccharide from Pleurotus ostreatus (Jacq.) P. Kumm and its cytotoxic activity against murine lymphoid cancer cell line]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c37b784d5eed0c48449027e

The purpose of this study was to optimize the extraction method for polysaccharide from the fruiting bodies of Pleurotus ostreatus (Jacq.) P. Kumm and to assess the antioxidant and cytotoxic potentials of polysaccharide. In this investigation, polysaccharides from Pleurotus ostreatus (Jacq.) P. Kumm were extricated by utilizing the hot water. One-single factor and response surface methodology was established to optimize the extraction conditions for polysaccharide from Pleurotus ostreatus (Jacq.) P. Kumm. Examination of antioxidant activity of Pleurotus ostreatus polysaccharide (POP) was directed by utilizing 2, 2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) and 2, 2-azino-bis-3-ethyl-benzothiazoline-6-sulfonic acid (ABTS) techniques. Cytotoxicity of POP was evaluated using an MTT assay. The experimental data were fitted to a quadratic equation utilizing multiple regression investigations, and the ideal conditions were as per the following: water/crude material proportion, 26.04 mL/g; an extraction time of 62.08 minutes; and an extraction temperature 70.5°C. Under such conditions, the polysaccharide yield was 5.32 ± 0.12% with the anticipated yield. POP showed good scavenging activity against DPPH radical (p<0.001, EC50 = 1036.38 μg/mL, R2 = 0.8313) and ABTS radicals (p<0.001, EC50 = 824.37 μg/mL, R2 = 0.8223), with a dose (p<0.001)-and-time (p<0.001) dependent cytotoxic potential on Ehrlich ascites carcinoma cell line in vitro. This demonstrated that polysaccharides (POP) had certain cancer prevention agent exercises. In this manner, these examinations give reference to additionally research and reasonable improvement of Pleurotus ostreatus (Jacq.) P. Kumm polysaccharide and POP may prove a useful therapeutic agent, due to its robust antioxidant and cytotoxic activity.

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<![CDATA[Effectiveness and treatment moderators of internet interventions for adult problem drinking: An individual patient data meta-analysis of 19 randomised controlled trials]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c22a0bad5eed0c4849ebeda

Background

Face-to-face brief interventions for problem drinking are effective, but they have found limited implementation in routine care and the community. Internet-based interventions could overcome this treatment gap. We investigated effectiveness and moderators of treatment outcomes in internet-based interventions for adult problem drinking (iAIs).

Methods and findings

Systematic searches were performed in medical and psychological databases to 31 December 2016. A one-stage individual patient data meta-analysis (IPDMA) was conducted with a linear mixed model complete-case approach, using baseline and first follow-up data. The primary outcome measure was mean weekly alcohol consumption in standard units (SUs, 10 grams of ethanol). Secondary outcome was treatment response (TR), defined as less than 14/21 SUs for women/men weekly. Putative participant, intervention, and study moderators were included. Robustness was verified in three sensitivity analyses: a two-stage IPDMA, a one-stage IPDMA using multiple imputation, and a missing-not-at-random (MNAR) analysis. We obtained baseline data for 14,198 adult participants (19 randomised controlled trials [RCTs], mean age 40.7 [SD = 13.2], 47.6% women). Their baseline mean weekly alcohol consumption was 38.1 SUs (SD = 26.9). Most were regular problem drinkers (80.1%, SUs 44.7, SD = 26.4) and 19.9% (SUs 11.9, SD = 4.1) were binge-only drinkers. About one third were heavy drinkers, meaning that women/men consumed, respectively, more than 35/50 SUs of alcohol at baseline (34.2%, SUs 65.9, SD = 27.1). Post-intervention data were available for 8,095 participants. Compared with controls, iAI participants showed a greater mean weekly decrease at follow-up of 5.02 SUs (95% CI −7.57 to −2.48, p < 0.001) and a higher rate of TR (odds ratio [OR] 2.20, 95% CI 1.63–2.95, p < 0.001, number needed to treat [NNT] = 4.15, 95% CI 3.06–6.62). Persons above age 55 showed higher TR than their younger counterparts (OR = 1.66, 95% CI 1.21–2.27, p = 0.002). Drinking profiles were not significantly associated with treatment outcomes. Human-supported interventions were superior to fully automated ones on both outcome measures (comparative reduction: −6.78 SUs, 95% CI −12.11 to −1.45, p = 0.013; TR: OR = 2.23, 95% CI 1.22–4.08, p = 0.009). Participants treated in iAIs based on personalised normative feedback (PNF) alone were significantly less likely to sustain low-risk drinking at follow-up than those in iAIs based on integrated therapeutic principles (OR = 0.52, 95% CI 0.29–0.93, p = 0.029). The use of waitlist control in RCTs was associated with significantly better treatment outcomes than the use of other types of control (comparative reduction: −9.27 SUs, 95% CI −13.97 to −4.57, p < 0.001; TR: OR = 3.74, 95% CI 2.13–6.53, p < 0.001). The overall quality of the RCTs was high; a major limitation included high study dropout (43%). Sensitivity analyses confirmed the robustness of our primary analyses.

Conclusion

To our knowledge, this is the first IPDMA on internet-based interventions that has shown them to be effective in curbing various patterns of adult problem drinking in both community and healthcare settings. Waitlist control may be conducive to inflation of treatment outcomes.

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<![CDATA[A new microendemic species of the deep-water catshark genus Bythaelurus (Carcharhiniformes, Pentanchidae) from the northwestern Indian Ocean, with investigations of its feeding ecology, generic review and identification key]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c1ab81cd5eed0c484026c1e

A new deep-water catshark, Bythaelurus stewarti, is described based on 121 examined specimens caught on the Error Seamount (Mount Error Guyot) in the northwestern Indian Ocean. The new species differs from all congeners in the restricted distribution, a higher spiral valve turn count and in the morphology of the dermal denticles. It is distinguished from its morphologically and geographically closest congener, B. hispidus (Alcock), by the larger size (maximum size 44 vs. 39 cm TL, maturity size of males 35–39 vs. 21–28 cm TL), darker fresh coloration and dark grayish-brown mottling of the ventral head (vs. ventral head typically uniformly yellowish or whitish). Furthermore, it has a strongly different morphology of dermal denticles, in particular smaller and less elongate branchial, trunk and lateral caudal denticles that are set much less densely and have a surface that is very strongly and fully structured by reticulations (vs. structured by reticulations only in basal fourth). In addition, the new species differs from B. hispidus in having more slender claspers that are gradually narrowing to the bluntly pointed tip without knob-like apex (vs. claspers broader and with distinct knob-like apex), more spiral valve turns (11–12 vs. 8–10) and numerous statistical differences in morphometrics. A review of and a key to the species of Bythaelurus are given.

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<![CDATA[Chemical characterization and biological activity of six different extracts of propolis through conventional methods and supercritical extraction]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c1028b7d5eed0c484247e92

Propolis is a natural product with many demonstrated biological activities and propolis extract has been used in the food, pharmaceutical and cosmetics industries. Different works have showed the variations in the chemical composition, and consequently, on the biological activity of the propolis that are associated with its type and geographic origin. Due to this study evaluated propolis extracts obtained through supercritical extraction and ethanolic extraction (conventional) in three samples of different types of propolis (red, green and brown), collected from different regions in Brazil (state of Bahia). Analyses were performed to determine the humidity, water activity, the content of total ash, proteins, lipids and fiber in raw propolis samples. The content of phenolic compounds, flavonoids, in vitro antioxidant activity (DPPH), catechin, ferulic acid and luteolin and antimicrobial activity against two bacteria (Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli) were determined for all extracts. For the green and red ethanolic extracts the anti-leishmanicidal potential was also evaluated. The physicochemical profiles showed agreement in relation to the literature. The results identified significant differences among the extracts (p>0.05), which are in conformity with their extraction method, as well as with type and botanical origin of the samples. The extraction with supercritical fluid was not efficient to obtain extracts with the highest contents of antioxidants compounds, when compared with the ethanolic extracts. The best results were shown for the extracts obtained through the conventional extraction method (ethanolic) indicating a higher selectivity for the extraction of antioxidants compounds. The red variety showed the largest biological potential, which included the content of antioxidants compounds. The results found in this study confirm the influence of the type of the raw material on the composition and characteristics of the extracts. The parameters analysis were important to characterize and evaluate the quality of the different Brazilian propolis extracts based on the increased use of propolis by the natural products industry.

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<![CDATA[Screening for osteogenic activity in extracts from Irish marine organisms: The potential of Ceramium pallidum]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c084238d5eed0c484fcc3c4

Extracts and compounds derived from marine organisms have reportedly shown some osteogenic potential. As such, these bioactives may aid in the treatment of musculoskeletal conditions such as osteoporosis; helping to address inefficacies with current treatment options. In this study, 72 fractions were tested for their in vitro osteogenic activity using a human foetal osteoblast (hFOB) cell line and bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), focusing on their cytotoxic, proliferative and differentiation effects. Extracts dissolved in dimethyl sulfoxide and ethanol showed no significant osteogenic potential. However, two extracts derived from powder residues (left over from original organic extractions) caused a significant promotion of MSC differentiation. Bioactivity from powder residues derived from the epiphytic red algae Ceramium pallidum is described in detail to highlight its treatment potential. In vitro, C. pallidum was shown to promote MSC differentiation and extracellular matrix mineralisation. In vivo, this extract caused a significant increase in opercular bone growth of zebrafish larvae and a significant increase in bone density of regenerated adult caudal fins. Our findings therefore show the importance of continued screening efforts, particularly of novel extract sources, and the presence of bioactive compounds in C. pallidum extract.

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<![CDATA[An integrated characterization of Picea abies industrial bark regarding chemical composition, thermal properties and polar extracts activity]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c06f03cd5eed0c484c6d494

The present work determines the chemical and thermal characteristics as well as the phytochemical and antioxidant potential of the polar extractives of the Picea abies bark from an industrial mill, their wood and bark components and also different bark fractions obtained by mechanical fractionation (fine B1, Φ<0.180 mm, medium B3, 0.450 < Φ<0.850 mm and coarse B6, 2 < Φ<10 mm). The aim is to increase the knowledge on the Picea abies bark to better determine possible uses other than burning for energy production and to test an initial size reduction process to achieve fractions with different characteristics. Compared to wood, bark presented similar lignin (27%), higher mineral (3.9% vs 0.4%) and extractives (20.3% vs 3.8%) and lower polysaccharides (48% vs 71%) contents. Regarding bark fractions the fines showed higher ash (6.3%), extractives (25%) and lignin (29%) than the coarse fraction (3.9%, 19% and 25% respectively). Polysaccharide contents increased with particle size of the bark fractions (38% vs 52% for B1 and B6) but showed the same relative composition. The phytochemical profile of ethanol and water extracts presented higher contents for bark than wood of total phenols (2x higher), flavonoids (3x higher) and tannins (4-10x higher) with an increasing tendency with particle size. Bark antioxidant activity was higher than that of wood for ferric-reducing antioxidant power (FRAP, 10 vs 6 mmolFe2+/gExt for the ethanol extract) and free radical scavenging activity (DPPH, 6 vs 18 mg/L IC50 for the ethanol extract) methods. The different bark fractions antioxidant activity was very similar. Bark thermal properties showed a much lower volatiles to fixed carbon ratio (V/FC) than wood (3.1 vs 5.2) although the same higher heating value (20.3 MJ/kg). The fractions were quite similar. Bark presented chemical features that point to their possible upgrade, whether by taking advantage of the high extractives with bioactive compounds or the production potential for hemicellulose-derived oligomers with possible use in nutraceutical and pharmaceutical industries.

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<![CDATA[Linkage mapping of yeast cross protection connects gene expression variation to a higher-order organismal trait]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c032de1d5eed0c4844f88ad

Gene expression variation is extensive in nature, and is hypothesized to play a major role in shaping phenotypic diversity. However, connecting differences in gene expression across individuals to higher-order organismal traits is not trivial. In many cases, gene expression variation may be evolutionarily neutral, and in other cases expression variation may only affect phenotype under specific conditions. To understand connections between gene expression variation and stress defense phenotypes, we have been leveraging extensive natural variation in the gene expression response to acute ethanol in laboratory and wild Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains. Previous work found that the genetic architecture underlying these expression differences included dozens of “hotspot” loci that affected many transcripts in trans. In the present study, we provide new evidence that one of these expression QTL hotspot loci affects natural variation in one particular stress defense phenotype—ethanol-induced cross protection against severe doses of H2O2. A major causative polymorphism is in the heme-activated transcription factor Hap1p, which we show directly impacts cross protection, but not the basal H2O2 resistance of unstressed cells. This provides further support that distinct cellular mechanisms underlie basal and acquired stress resistance. We also show that Hap1p-dependent cross protection relies on novel regulation of cytosolic catalase T (Ctt1p) during ethanol stress in a wild oak strain. Because ethanol accumulation precedes aerobic respiration and accompanying reactive oxygen species formation, wild strains with the ability to anticipate impending oxidative stress would likely be at an advantage. This study highlights how strategically chosen traits that better correlate with gene expression changes can improve our power to identify novel connections between gene expression variation and higher-order organismal phenotypes.

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