ResearchPad - toxicity https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Graphene-based 2D constructs for enhanced fibroblast support]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_15755 Complex skin wounds have always been a significant health and economic problem worldwide due to their elusive and sometimes poor or non-healing conditions. If not well-treated, such wounds may lead to amputation, infections, cancer, or even death. Thus, there is a need to efficiently generate multifunctional skin grafts that address a wide range of skin conditions, including non-healing wounds, and enable the regeneration of new skin tissue. Here, we propose studying pristine graphene and two of its oxygen-functionalized derivatives—high and low-oxygen graphene films—as potential substrates for skin cell proliferation and differentiation. Using BJ cells (human foreskin-derived fibroblasts) to represent basic skin cells, we show that the changes in surface properties of pristine graphene due to oxygen functionalization do not seem to statistically impact the normal proliferation and maturation of skin cells. Our results indicate that the pristine and oxidized graphenes presented relatively low cytotoxicity to BJ fibroblasts and, in fact, support their growth and bioactivity. Therefore, these graphene films could potentially be integrated into more complex skin regenerative systems to support skin regeneration. Because graphene’s surface can be relatively easily functionalized with various chemical groups, this finding presents a major opportunity for the development of various composite materials that can act as active components in regenerative applications such as skin regeneration.

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<![CDATA[Patient-derived oral mucosa organoids as an <i>in vitro</i> model for methotrexate induced toxicity in pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_15720 We have recently established a protocol to grow wildtype human oral mucosa organoids. These three-dimensional structures can be maintained in culture long-term, do not require immortalization, and recapitulate the multilayered composition of the epithelial lining of the oral mucosa. Here, we validate the use of this model to study the effect of Leucovorin (LV) on Methotrexate (MTX)-induced toxicity. MTX is a chemotherapeutic agent used in the treatment of pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Although effective, the use of MTX often results in severe side-effects, including oral mucositis, which is characterized by epithelial cell death. Here, we show that organoids are sensitive to MTX, and that the addition of LV reduces MTX toxicity, in both a concentration- and timing-dependent manner. Additionally, we show that a 24 hour ‘pretreatment’ with LV reduces MTX-induced cell death, suggesting that such a pretreatment could decrease mucositis in patients. Taken together, we provide the first in vitro model to study the effect of MTX on wildtype oral mucosa cells. Our findings underscore the relevance of the clinically applied LV regimen and highlight the potential of this model to further optimize modifications in dosing and timing of Leucovorin on oral mucosa cells.

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<![CDATA[The <i>Caenorhabditis elegans</i> CUB-like-domain containing protein RBT-1 functions as a receptor for <i>Bacillus thuringiensis</i> Cry6Aa toxin]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_14753 Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) crystal proteins belong to pore-forming toxins (PFTs), which display virulence against target hosts by forming holes in the cell membrane. Cry6A is a nematicidal PFT, which exhibits unique protein structure and different mode of action than Cry5B, another nematicidal PFT. However, little is known about the mode of action of Cry6A. Although an intracellular nematicidal necrosis pathway of Cry6A was reported, its extracellular mode of action remains unknown. We here demonstrate that the CUB-like-domain containing protein RBT-1 acts as a functional receptor of Cry6A, which mediates the intestinal cell interaction and nematicidal activity of this toxin. RBT-1 represents a new class of crystal protein receptors. RBT-1 is dispensable for Cry5B toxicity against nematodes, consistent with that Cry6A and Cry5B have different nematicidal mechanisms. We also find that Cry6A kills nematodes by complex mechanism since rbt-1 mutation did not affect Cry6A-mediated necrosis signaling pathway. This work not only enhances the understanding of Bt crystal protein-nematode mechanism, but is also in favor for the application of Cry6A in nematode control.

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<![CDATA[Placental transfer of Letermovir &amp; Maribavir in the <i>ex vivo</i> human cotyledon perfusion model. New perspectives for <i>in utero</i> treatment of congenital cytomegalovirus infection]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_11236 Congenital cytomegalovirus infection can lead to severe sequelae. When fetal infection is confirmed, we hypothesize that fetal treatment could improve the outcome. Maternal oral administration of an effective drug crossing the placenta could allow fetal treatment. Letermovir (LMV) and Maribavir (MBV) are new CMV antivirals, and potential candidates for fetal treatment.MethodsThe objective was to investigate the placental transfer of LMV and MBV in the ex vivo method of the human perfused cotyledon. Term placentas were perfused, in an open-circuit model, with LMV or MBV at concentrations in the range of clinical peak plasma concentrations. Concentrations were measured using ultraperformance liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry. Mean fetal transfer rate (FTR) (fetal (FC) /maternal concentration), clearance index (CLI), accumulation index (AI) (retention of each drug in the cotyledon tissue) were measured. Mean FC were compared with half maximal effective concentrations of the drugs (EC50(LMV) and EC50(MBV)).ResultsFor LMV, the mean FC was (± standard deviation) 1.1 ± 0.2 mg/L, 1,000-fold above the EC50(LMV). Mean FTR, CLI and AI were 9 ± 1%, 35 ± 6% and 4 ± 2% respectively. For MBV, the mean FC was 1.4 ± 0.2 mg/L, 28-fold above the EC50(MBV). Mean FTR, CLI and AI were 10 ± 1%, 50 ± 7% and 2 ± 1% respectively.ConclusionsDrugs’ concentrations in the fetal side should be in the range for in utero treatment of fetuses infected with CMV as the mean FC was superior to the EC50 for both molecules. ]]> <![CDATA[Zebrafish as an integrative vertebrate model to identify miRNA mechanisms regulating toxicity]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Nf1715fec-8a11-4238-b36f-9aac20643261 Zebrafish (Danio rerio) are an integrative vertebrate model ideal for toxicity studies. The zebrafish genome is sequenced with detailed characterization of all life stages. With their genetic similarity to humans, zebrafish models are established to study biological processes including development and disease mechanisms for translation to human health. The zebrafish genome, similar to other eukaryotic organisms, contains microRNAs (miRNAs) which function along with other epigenetic mechanisms to regulate gene expression. Studies have now established that exposure to toxins and xenobiotics can change miRNA expression profiles resulting in various physiological and behavioral alterations. In this review, we cover the intersection of miRNA alterations from toxin or xenobiotic exposure with a focus on studies using the zebrafish model system to identify miRNA mechanisms regulating toxicity. Studies to date have addressed exposures to toxins, particulate matter and nanoparticles, various environmental contaminants including pesticides, ethanol, and pharmaceuticals. Current limitations of the completed studies and future directions for this research area are discussed.

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<![CDATA[Investigating the potential use of an ionic liquid (1-Butyl-1-methylpyrrolidinium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide) as an anti-fungal treatment against the amphibian chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N5c2fa054-4262-4dfe-83a3-c606a06f5241

The disease chytridiomycosis, caused by the pathogenic chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), has contributed to global amphibian declines. Bd infects the keratinized epidermal tissue in amphibians and causes hyperkeratosis and excessive skin shedding. In individuals of susceptible species, the regulatory function of the amphibian’s skin is disrupted resulting in an electrolyte depletion, osmotic imbalance, and eventually death. Safe and effective treatments for chytridiomycosis are urgently needed to control chytrid fungal infections and stabilize populations of endangered amphibian species in captivity and in the wild. Currently, the most widely used anti-Bd treatment is itraconazole. Preparations of itraconazole formulated for amphibian use has proved effective, but treatment involves short baths over seven to ten days, a process which is logistically challenging, stressful, and causes long-term health effects. Here, we explore a novel anti-fungal therapeutic using a single application of the ionic liquid, 1-Butyl-1-methylpyrrolidinium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide (BMP-NTf2), for the treatment of chytridiomycosis. BMP-NTf2 was found be effective at killing Bd in vitro at low concentrations (1:1000 dilution). We tested BMP-NTf2 in vivo on two amphibian species, one that is relatively tolerant of chytridiomycosis (Pseudacris regilla) and one that is highly susceptible (Dendrobates tinctorius). A toxicity trial revealed a surprising interaction between Bd infection status and the impact of BMP-NTf2 on D. tinctorius survival. Uninfected D. tinctorius tolerated BMP-NTf2 (mean ± SE; 96.01 ± 9.00 μl/g), such that only 1 out of 30 frogs died following treatment (at a dose of 156.95 μL/g), whereas, a lower dose (mean ± SE; 97.45 ± 3.52 μL/g) was not tolerated by Bd-infected D. tinctorius, where 15 of 23 frogs died shortly upon BMP-NTf2 application. Those that tolerated the BMP-NTf2 application did not exhibit Bd clearance. Thus, BMP-NTf2 application, under the conditions tested here, is not a suitable option for clearing Bd infection in D. tinctorius. However, different results were obtained for P. regilla. Two topical applications of BMP-NTf2 on Bd-infected P. regilla (using a lower BMP-NTf2 dose than on D. tinctorius, mean ± SE; 9.42 ± 1.43 μL/g) reduced Bd growth, although the effect was lower than that obtained by daily doses of itracanozole (50% frogs exhibited complete clearance on day 16 vs. 100% for itracanozole). Our findings suggest that BMP-NTf2 has the potential to treat Bd infection, however the effect depends on several parameters. Further optimization of dose and schedule are needed before BMP-NTf2 can be considered as a safe and effective alternative to more conventional antifungal agents, such as itraconazole.

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<![CDATA[A compound attributes-based predictive model for drug induced liver injury in humans]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Ndeb57c49-a1cc-41d4-9618-08dc56c45dac

Drug induced liver injury (DILI) is one of the key safety concerns in drug development. To assess the likelihood of drug candidates with potential adverse reactions of liver, we propose a compound attributes-based approach to predicting hepatobiliary disorders that are routinely reported to US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Adverse Event Reporting System (FAERS). Specifically, we developed a support vector machine (SVM) model with recursive feature extraction, based on physicochemical and structural properties of compounds as model input. Cross validation demonstrates that the predictive model has a robust performance with averaged 70% of both sensitivity and specificity over 500 trials. An independent validation was performed on public benchmark drugs and the results suggest potential utility of our model for identifying safety alerts. This in silico approach, upon further validation, would ultimately be implemented, together with other in vitro safety assays, for screening compounds early in drug development.

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<![CDATA[Identification of NUDT15 gene variants in Amazonian Amerindians and admixed individuals from northern Brazil]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N0a09703b-e69a-40d3-8ae4-dfe23e56b45d

Introduction

The nudix hydrolase 15 (NUDT15) gene acts in the metabolism of thiopurine, by catabolizing its active metabolite thioguanosine triphosphate into its inactivated form, thioguanosine monophosphate. The frequency of alternative NUDT15 alleles, in particular those that cause a drastic loss of gene function, varies widely among geographically distinct populations. In the general population of northern Brazilian, high toxicity rates (65%) have been recorded in patients treated with the standard protocol for acute lymphoblastic leukemia, which involves thiopurine-based drugs. The present study characterized the molecular profile of the coding region of the NUDT15 gene in two groups, non-admixed Amerindians and admixed individuals from the Amazon region of northern Brazil.

Methods

The entire NUDT15 gene was sequenced in 64 Amerindians from 12 Amazonian groups and 82 admixed individuals from northern Brazil. The DNA was extracted using phenol-chloroform. The exome libraries were prepared using the Nextera Rapid Capture Exome (Illumina) and SureSelect Human All Exon V6 (Agilent) kits. The allelic variants were annotated in the ViVa® (Viewer of Variants) software.

Results

Four NUDT15 variants were identified: rs374594155, rs1272632214, rs147390019, andrs116855232. The variants rs1272632214 and rs116855232 were in complete linkage disequilibrium, and were assigned to the NUDT15*2 genotype. These variants had high frequencies in both our study populations in comparison with other populations catalogued in the 1000 Genomes database. We also identified the NUDT15*4 haplotype in our study populations, at frequencies similar to those reported in other populations from around the world.

Conclusion

Our findings indicate that Amerindian and admixed populations from northern Brazil have high frequencies of the NUDT15 haplotypes that alter the metabolism profile of thiopurines.

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<![CDATA[microRNAs: Potential biomarkers of toxicity: A special issue of the journal Toxicology Reports]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N46ea6312-583a-4502-b5cc-78d000a59b19 ]]> <![CDATA[Retraction: DJ-1 Modulates α-Synuclein Aggregation State in a Cellular Model of Oxidative Stress: Relevance for Parkinson's Disease and Involvement of HSP70]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N05d3b52b-2e52-4bb2-9470-b0dedbc652af ]]> <![CDATA[Single-center retrospective study of the effectiveness and toxicity of the oral iron chelating drugs deferiprone and deferasirox]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c9900fdd5eed0c484b95e7f

Background

Iron overload, resulting from blood transfusions in patients with chronic anemias, has historically been controlled with regular deferoxamine, but its parenteral requirement encouraged studies of orally-active agents, including deferasirox and deferiprone. Deferasirox, licensed by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2005 based upon the results of randomized controlled trials, is now first-line therapy worldwide. In contrast, early investigator-initiated trials of deferiprone were prematurely terminated after investigators raised safety concerns. The FDA declined market approval of deferiprone; years later, it licensed the drug as “last resort” therapy, to be prescribed only if first-line drugs had failed. We undertook to evaluate the long-term effectiveness and toxicities of deferiprone and deferasirox in one transfusion clinic.

Methods and findings

Under an IRB-approved study, we retrospectively inspected the electronic medical records of consented iron-loaded patients managed between 2009 and 2015 at The University Health Network (UHN), Toronto. We compared changes in liver and heart iron, adverse effects and other outcomes, in patients treated with deferiprone or deferasirox.

Results

Although deferiprone was unlicensed in Canada, one-third (n = 41) of locally-transfused patients had been switched from first-line, licensed therapies (deferoxamine or deferasirox) to regimens of unlicensed deferiprone. The primary endpoint of monitoring in iron overload, hepatic iron concentration (HIC), increased (worsened) during deferiprone monotherapy (mean 10±2–18±2 mg/g; p < 0.0003), exceeding the threshold for life-threatening complications (15 mg iron/g liver) in 50% patients. During deferasirox monotherapy, mean HIC decreased (improved) (11±1–6±1 mg/g; p < 0.0001). Follow-up HICs were significantly different following deferiprone and deferasirox monotherapies (p < 0.0000002). Addition of low-dose deferoxamine (<40 mg/kg/day) to deferiprone did not result in reductions of HIC to <15 mg/g (baseline 20±4 mg/g; follow-up, 18±4 mg/g; p < 0.2) or in reduction in the proportion of patients with HIC exceeding 15 mg/g (p < 0.2). During deferiprone exposure, new diabetes mellitus, a recognized consequence of inadequate iron control, was diagnosed in 17% patients, most of whom had sustained HICs exceeding 15 mg/g for years; one woman died after 13 months of a regimen of deferiprone and low-dose deferasirox. During deferiprone exposure, serum ALT increased over baseline in 65% patients. Mean serum ALT increased 6.6-fold (p < 0.001) often persisting for years. During deferasirox exposure, mean ALT was unchanged (p < 0.84). No significant differences between treatment groups were observed in the proportions of patients estimated to have elevated cardiac iron.

Conclusions

Deferiprone showed ineffectiveness and significant toxicity in most patients. Combination with low doses of first-line therapies did not improve the effectiveness of deferiprone. Exposure to deferiprone, over six years while the drug was unlicensed, in the face of ineffectiveness and serious toxicities, demands review of the standards of local medical practice. The limited scope of regulatory approval of deferiprone, worldwide, should restrict its exposure to the few patients genuinely unable to tolerate the two effective, first-line therapies.

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<![CDATA[Evaluation of a class of isatinoids identified from a high-throughput screen of human kinase inhibitors as anti-Sleeping Sickness agents]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6730afd5eed0c484f37eca

New treatments are needed for neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) such as Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT), Chagas disease, and schistosomiasis. Through a whole organism high-throughput screening campaign, we previously identified 797 human kinase inhibitors that grouped into 59 structural clusters and showed activity against T. brucei, the causative agent of HAT. We herein report the results of further investigation of one of these clusters consisting of substituted isatin derivatives, focusing on establishing structure-activity and -property relationship scope. We also describe their in vitro absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion (ADME) properties. For one isatin, NEU-4391, which offered the best activity-property profile, pharmacokinetic parameters were measured in mice.

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<![CDATA[Induction of oxidative stress, apoptosis and DNA damage by koumine in Tetrahymena thermophila]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6c75aad5eed0c4843cffa5

Koumine is a component of the Chinese medicinal herb Gelsemium elegans and is toxic to vertebrates. We used the ciliate Tetrahymena thermophila as a model to evaluate the toxic effects of this indole alkaloid in eukaryotic microorganisms. Koumine inhibited T. thermophila growth and viability in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, this drug produced oxidative stress in T. thermophila cells and expressions of antioxidant enzymes were significantly elevated at high koumine levels (p < 0.05). Koumine also caused significant levels of apoptosis (p < 0.05) and induced DNA damage in a dose-dependent manner. Mitophagic vacuoles were present in cells indicating induction of autophagy by this drug. Expression of ATG7, MTT2/4, CYP1 and HSP70 as well as the MAP kinase pathway gene MPK1 and MPK3 were significantly altered after exposed to koumine. This study represents a preliminary toxicological evaluation of koumine in the single celled eukaryote T. thermophila.

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<![CDATA[A general dose-response relationship for chronic chemical and other health stressors and mixtures based on an emergent illness severity model]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c706744d5eed0c4847c6cf4

Current efforts to assess human health response to chemicals based on high-throughput in vitro assay data on intra-cellular changes have been hindered for some illnesses by lack of information on higher-level extracellular, inter-organ, and organism-level interactions. However, a dose-response function (DRF), informed by various levels of information including apical health response, can represent a template for convergent top-down, bottom-up analysis. In this paper, a general DRF for chronic chemical and other health stressors and mixtures is derived based on a general first-order model previously derived and demonstrated for illness progression. The derivation accounts for essential autocorrelation among initiating event magnitudes along a toxicological mode of action, typical of complex processes in general, and reveals the inverse relationship between the minimum illness-inducing dose, and the illness severity per unit dose (both variable across a population). The resulting emergent DRF is theoretically scale-inclusive and amenable to low-dose extrapolation. The two-parameter single-toxicant version can be monotonic or sigmoidal, and is demonstrated preferable to traditional models (multistage, lognormal, generalized linear) for the published cancer and non-cancer datasets analyzed: chloroform (induced liver necrosis in female mice); bromate (induced dysplastic focia in male inbred rats); and 2-acetylaminofluorene (induced liver neoplasms and bladder carcinomas in 20,328 female mice). Common- and dissimilar-mode mixture models are demonstrated versus orthogonal data on toluene/benzene mixtures (mortality in Japanese medaka, Oryzias latipes, following embryonic exposure). Findings support previous empirical demonstration, and also reveal how a chemical with a typical monotonically-increasing DRF can display a J-shaped DRF when a second, antagonistic common-mode chemical is present. Overall, the general DRF derived here based on an autocorrelated first-order model appears to provide both a strong theoretical/biological basis for, as well as an accurate statistical description of, a diverse, albeit small, sample of observed dose-response data. The further generalizability of this conclusion can be tested in future analyses comparing with traditional modeling approaches across a broader range of datasets.

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<![CDATA[SLFN11 can sensitize tumor cells towards IFN-γ-mediated T cell killing]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6c75d8d5eed0c4843d02bd

Experimental and clinical observations have highlighted the role of cytotoxic T cells in human tumor control. However, the parameters that control tumor cell sensitivity to T cell attack remain incompletely understood. To identify modulators of tumor cell sensitivity to T cell effector mechanisms, we performed a whole genome haploid screen in HAP1 cells. Selection of tumor cells by exposure to tumor-specific T cells identified components of the interferon-γ (IFN-γ) receptor (IFNGR) signaling pathway, and tumor cell killing by cytotoxic T cells was shown to be in large part mediated by the pro-apoptotic effects of IFN-γ. Notably, we identified schlafen 11 (SLFN11), a known modulator of DNA damage toxicity, as a regulator of tumor cell sensitivity to T cell-secreted IFN-γ. SLFN11 does not influence IFNGR signaling, but couples IFNGR signaling to the induction of the DNA damage response (DDR) in a context dependent fashion. In line with this role of SLFN11, loss of SLFN11 can reduce IFN-γ mediated toxicity. Collectively, our data indicate that SLFN11 can couple IFN-γ exposure of tumor cells to DDR and cellular apoptosis. Future work should reveal the mechanistic basis for the link between IFNGR signaling and DNA damage response, and identify tumor cell types in which SLFN11 contributes to the anti-tumor activity of T cells.

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<![CDATA[Toxicity and oviposition deterrence of essential oils of Clinopodium nubigenum and Lavandula angustifolia against the myiasis-inducing blowfly Lucilia sericata]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c76fe5ad5eed0c484e5b930

Cutaneous myiasis is a severe worldwide medical and veterinary issue. In this trial the essential oil (EO) of the Andean medicinal plant species Clinopodium nubigenum (Kunth) Kuntze was evaluated for its bioactivity against the myiasis-inducing blowfly Lucilia sericata (Meigen) (Diptera Calliphoridae) and compared with that of the well-known medicinal plant species Lavandula angustifolia Mill. The EOs were analysed and tested in laboratory for their oviposition deterrence and toxicity against L. sericata adults. The physiology of EO toxicity was evaluated by enzymatic inhibition tests. The antibacterial and antifungal properties of the EOs were tested as well. At 0.8 μL cm-2, both EOs completely deterred L. sericata oviposition up to 3 hours. After 24 h, the oviposition deterrence was still 82.7% for L. angustifolia and the 89.5% for C. nubigenum. The two EOs were also toxic to eggs and adults of L. sericata. By contact/fumigation, the EOs, the LC50 values against the eggs were 0.07 and 0.48 μL cm-2 while, by topical application on the adults, LD50 values were 0.278 and 0.393 μL per individual for C. nubigenum and L. angustifolia EOs, respectively. Inhibition of acetylcholine esterase of L. sericata by EOs (IC50 = 67.450 and 79.495 mg L-1 for C. nubigenum and L. angustifolia, respectively) suggested that the neural sites are targets of the EO toxicity. Finally, the observed antibacterial and antifungal properties of C. nubigenum and L. angustifolia EOs suggest that they could also help prevent secondary infections.

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<![CDATA[Clinical outcomes and dosimetric study of hypofractionated Helical TomoTherapy in breast cancer patients]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5ca2a6d5eed0c48441e7f4

We present a single center’s experience of treatment outcomes and dosimetric parameters for breast cancer patients treated with hypofractionated Helical TomoTherapy (HT). This is a retrospective study of one hundred and thirty-six patients with invasive breast cancer treated between March 2012 and October 2016. Dosimetric parameters and 3-year loco-regional failure free survival (LRFFS) were analyzed. Dose to ipsilateral lung, heart and contralateral breast as well as acute and late toxicities were recorded. The median follow-up time is 45 months (range: 5–83). Two patients had loco-regional failure. The 3-year LRFFS was 99%. Acute grade 1 and 2 skin toxicities occurred in 95% and 1%, respectively. Coverage of the target volumes was achieved with the mean ± standard deviation (SD) of homogeneity and conformity index being 0.1 ± 0.04, and 0.8 ± 0.07, respectively. Dose to ipsilateral lung, contralateral breast, and heart was also within the limited constraints regardless of the complexity of target volumes. Only two percent of patients experienced late grade 2 skin toxicity. No late grade 2 subcutaneous tissue toxicity was found. Nine percent of patients developed late grade 1 lung toxicity. Hypofractionated radiotherapy using Helical TomoTherapy in breast irradiation provides excellent 3-year LRFFS and minimal acute and late toxicities. A careful, longer follow-up of healthy tissue effects to lung, heart, and contralateral breast is warranted.

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<![CDATA[Intensity-modulated radiotherapy for prostate cancer with seminal vesicle involvement (T3b): A multicentric retrospective analysis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c79b004d5eed0c4841e3c37

Objectives

No study has reported clinical results of external-beam radiotherapy specifically for T3b prostate cancer. The possibility of escalating the dose to the involved seminal vesicles (ISV) while respecting the dose constraints in the organs at risk is thus so far not clearly demonstrated. The objective of the study was to analyze the dose distribution and the clinical outcome in a large series of patients who received IMRT for T3b prostate cancer.

Materials and methods

This retrospective analysis included all patients who received IMRT and androgen deprivation therapy for T3b prostate cancer, between 2008 and 2017, in six French institutions, with available MRI images and dosimetric data.

Results

A total of 276 T3b patients were included. The median follow-up was 26 months. The median (range) prescribed doses (Gy) to the prostate and to the ISV were 77 (70–80) and 76 (46–80), respectively. The dose constraint recommendations were exceeded in less than 12% of patients for the rectum and the bladder. The 5-year risks of biochemical and clinical recurrences and cancer-specific death were 24.8%, 21.7%, and 10.3%, respectively. The 5-year risks of local, pelvic lymph node, and metastatic recurrences were 6.4%, 11.3%, and 15%, respectively. The number of involved lymph nodes (≤ 2 or ≥ 3) on MRI was the only significant prognostic factor in clinical recurrence (HR 9.86) and death (HR 2.78). Grade ≥ 2 acute and 5-year late toxicity rates were 13.2% and 12% for digestive toxicity, and 34% and 31.5% for urinary toxicity, respectively. The dose to the pelvic lymph node and the age were predictive of late digestive toxicity.

Conclusion

IMRT for T3b prostate cancer allows delivery of a curative dose in the ISV, with a moderate digestive toxicity but a higher urinary toxicity. Lymph node involvement increases the risk of recurrence and death.

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<![CDATA[Literature optimized integration of gene expression for organ-specific evaluation of toxicogenomics datasets]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c466586d5eed0c4845199b5

The study of drug toxicity in human organs is complicated by their complex inter-relations and by the obvious difficulty to testing drug effects on biologically relevant material. Animal models and human cell cultures offer alternatives for systematic and large-scale profiling of drug effects on gene expression level, as typically found in the so-called toxicogenomics datasets. However, the complexity of these data, which includes variable drug doses, time points, and experimental setups, makes it difficult to choose and integrate the data, and to evaluate the appropriateness of one or another model system to study drug toxicity (of particular drugs) of particular human organs. Here, we define a protocol to integrate drug-wise rankings of gene expression changes in toxicogenomics data, which we apply to the TG-GATEs dataset, to prioritize genes for association to drug toxicity in liver or kidney. Contrast of the results with sets of known human genes associated to drug toxicity in the literature allows to compare different rank aggregation approaches for the task at hand. Collectively, ranks from multiple models point to genes not previously associated to toxicity, notably, the PCNA clamp associated factor (PCLAF), and genes regulated by the master regulator of the antioxidant response NFE2L2, such as NQO1 and SRXN1. In addition, comparing gene ranks from different models allowed us to evaluate striking differences in terms of toxicity-associated genes between human and rat hepatocytes or between rat liver and rat hepatocytes. We interpret these results to point to the different molecular functions associated to organ toxicity that are best described by each model. We conclude that the expected production of toxicogenomics panels with larger numbers of drugs and models, in combination with the ongoing increase of the experimental literature in organ toxicity, will lead to increasingly better associations of genes for organism toxicity.

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<![CDATA[LRRK2 kinase plays a critical role in manganese-induced inflammation and apoptosis in microglia]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c478ca0d5eed0c484bd3865

Long-term exposure to elevated levels of manganese (Mn) causes manganism, a neurodegenerative disorder with Parkinson’s disease (PD)-like symptoms. Increasing evidence suggests that leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2), which is highly expressed in microglia and macrophages, contributes to the inflammation and neurotoxicity seen in autosomal dominant and sporadic PD. As gene-environment interactions have emerged as important modulators of PD-associated toxicity, LRRK2 may also mediate Mn-induced inflammation and pathogenesis. In this study, we investigated the role of LRRK2 in Mn-induced toxicity using human microglial cells (HMC3), LRRK2-wild-type (WT) and LRRK2-knockout (KO) RAW264.7 macrophage cells. Results showed that Mn activated LRRK2 kinase by phosphorylation of its serine residue at the 1292 position (S1292) as a marker of its kinase activity in macrophage and microglia, while inhibition with GSK2578215A (GSK) and MLi-2 abolished Mn-induced LRRK2 activation. LRRK2 deletion and its pharmacological inhibition attenuated Mn-induced apoptosis in macrophages and microglia, along with concomitant decreases in the pro-apoptotic Bcl-2-associated X (Bax) protein. LRRK2 deletion also attenuated Mn-induced production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and the pro-inflammatory cytokine TNF-α. Mn-induced phosphorylation of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) p38 and ERK signaling proteins was significantly attenuated in LRRK2 KO cells and GSK-treated cells. Moreover, inhibition of MAPK p38 and ERK as well as LRRK2 attenuated Mn-induced oxidative stress and cytotoxicity. These findings suggest that LRRK2 kinase activity plays a critical role in Mn-induced toxicity via downstream activation of MAPK signaling in macrophage and microglia. Collectively, these results suggest that LRRK2 could be a potential molecular target for developing therapeutics to treat Mn-related neurodegenerative disorders.

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