ResearchPad - x-ray-diffraction https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Microbeam X-ray diffraction study of lipid structure in stratum corneum of human skin]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_7631 Human skin, not previously frozen, was studied by small-angle X-ray diffraction. The samples were folded so that a 6μm X-ray beam passed through the top layer of skin, stratum corneum. Diffraction patterns recorded with this method consisted of peaks at about q = 0.5, 1.0 and 1.4 nm-1 in the direction perpendicular to the skin surface more clearly than in previous studies. These peaks are interpreted to arise from lipids between corneocytes. A simple unit of a linear electron density profile with three minima was used to account for the observed intensity profiles. Combinations of calculated diffraction from models with one, two and three units accounted for the major part of the observed diffraction pattern, showing the diversity in the structure of the intercellular lipids.

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<![CDATA[The molecular structure of β-alanine is resistant to sterilising doses of gamma radiation]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c478c76d5eed0c484bd2752

β-alanine is the rate-limiting point for the endogenous synthesis of carnosine in skeletal muscle. Carnosine has a wide range of implications for health, normal function and exercise performance. Whilst the physiological relevance of carnosine to different tissues remains enigmatic, β-alanine administration is a useful strategy to investigate the physiological roles of carnosine in humans. Intravenous administration of β-alanine is an interesting approach to study carnosine metabolism. However, sterilisation is mandatory due to the nature of the administration route. We evaluated whether sterilising doses of gamma radiation damages the molecular structure and leads to the loss of functional characteristics of β-alanine. Pure β-alanine was sterilised by gamma radiation in sealed glass vials using a 60Co multipurpose irradiator at a dose rate of 8.5 kGy.hour-1 totalising 10, 20, 25 30 and 40 kGy. The molecular integrity was assessed by X-ray Diffraction and changes in content were determined by High Performance Liquid Chromatography (UV-HPLC) and Triple Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer (HPLC/MS-MS). Sterility assurance was evaluated by inoculation assay. To examine whether functional properties were preserved, β-alanine was infused in one participant, who rated the level of paraesthesia on the skin using a 0–3 scale. Urinary β-alanine was quantified before and 24-h following β-alanine infusion using HPLC-ESI+-MS/MS. Irradiation resulted in no change in the crystal structure of β-alanine, no degradation, and no new peaks were identified in the dose range assayed. The inoculation assay showed the absence of viable microorganisms in all β-alanine samples, including those that did not undergo irradiation. Intravenous infusion of β-alanine resulted in paraesthesia and it detected in the urine as per normal. We conclude that gamma radiation is a suitable technique for the sterilisation of β-alanine. It does not lead to degradation, damage to the β-alanine structure, content or loss of function within the evaluated irradiation conditions.

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<![CDATA[New Anti-Inflammatory Metabolites by Microbial Transformation of Medrysone]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db0aab0ee8fa60bc9c44

Microbial transformation of the anti-inflammatory steroid medrysone (1) was carried out for the first time with the filamentous fungi Cunninghamella blakesleeana (ATCC 8688a), Neurospora crassa (ATCC 18419), and Rhizopus stolonifer (TSY 0471). The objective was to evaluate the anti-inflammatory potential of the substrate (1) and its metabolites. This yielded seven new metabolites, 14α-hydroxy-6α-methylpregn-4-ene-3,11,20-trione (2), 6β-hydroxy-6α-methylpregn-4-ene-3,11,20-trione (3), 15β-hydroxy-6α-methylpregn-4-ene-3,11,20-trione (4), 6β,17α-dihydroxy-6α-methylpregn-4-ene-3,11,20-trione (5), 6β,20S-dihydroxy-6α-methylpregn-4-ene-3,11-dione (6), 11β,16β-dihydroxy-6α-methylpregn-4-ene-3,11-dione (7), and 15β,20R-dihydroxy-6α-methylpregn-4-ene-3,11-dione (8). Single-crystal X-ray diffraction technique unambiguously established the structures of the metabolites 2, 4, 6, and 8. Fungal transformation of 1 yielded oxidation at the C-6β, -11β, -14α, -15β, -16β positions. Various cellular anti-inflammatory assays, including inhibition of phagocyte oxidative burst, T-cell proliferation, and cytokine were performed. Among all the tested compounds, metabolite 6 (IC50 = 30.3 μg/mL) moderately inhibited the reactive oxygen species (ROS) produced from zymosan-induced human whole blood cells. Compounds 1, 4, 5, 7, and 8 strongly inhibited the proliferation of T-cells with IC50 values between <0.2–10.4 μg/mL. Compound 7 was found to be the most potent inhibitor (IC50 < 0.2 μg/mL), whereas compounds 2, 3, and 6 showed moderate levels of inhibition (IC50 = 14.6–20.0 μg/mL). Compounds 1, and 7 also inhibited the production of pro-inflammatory cytokine TNF-α. All these compounds were found to be non-toxic to 3T3 cells (mouse fibroblast), and also showed no activity when tested against HeLa (human epithelial carcinoma), or against PC3 (prostate cancer) cancer cell lines.

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<![CDATA[Synthesis and Behavior of Cetyltrimethyl Ammonium Bromide Stabilized Zn1+xSnO3+x (0 ≤ x ≤1) Nano-Crystallites]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da98ab0ee8fa60ba293b

We report synthesis of cetyltrimethyl ammonium bromide (CTAB) stabilized Zn1+xSnO3+x (0 ≤ x ≤1) nano-crystallites by facile cost-effective wet chemistry route. The X-ray diffraction patterns of as-synthesized powders at the Zn/Sn ratio of 1 exhibited formation of ZnSn(OH)6. Increasing the Zn/Sn ratio further resulted in the precipitation of an additional phase corresponding to Zn(OH)2. The decomposition of these powders at 650°C for 3h led to the formation of the orthorhombic phase of ZnSnO3 and tetragonal SnO2-type phase of Zn2SnO4 at the Zn/Sn ratio of 1 and 2, respectively, with the formation of their mixed phases at intermediate compositions, i.e., at Zn/Sn ratio of 1.25, 1.50 and 1.75, respectively. The lattice parameters of orthorhombic and tetragonal phases were a ~ 3.6203 Å, b ~ 4.2646 Å and c ~ 12.8291Å (for ZnSnO3) and a = b ~ 5.0136 Å and c ~ 3.3055Å (for Zn2SnO4). The transmission electron micrographs revealed the formation of nano-crystallites with aspect ratio ~ 2; the length and thickness being 24, 13 nm (for ZnSnO3) and 47, 22 nm (for Zn2SnO4), respectively. The estimated direct bandgap values for the ZnSnO3 and Zn2SnO4 were found to be 4.21 eV and 4.12 eV, respectively. The ac conductivity values at room temperature (at 10 kHz) for the ZnSnO3 and Zn2SnO4 samples were 8.02 × 10−8-1 cm-1 and 6.77 × 10−8-1 cm-1, respectively. The relative permittivity was found to increase with increase in temperature, the room temperature values being 14.24 and 25.22 for the samples ZnSnO3 and Zn2SnO4, respectively. Both the samples, i.e., ZnSnO3 and Zn2SnO4, exhibited low values of loss tangent up to 300 K, the room temperature values being 0.89 and 0.72, respectively. A dye-sensitized solar cell has been fabricated using the optimized sample of zinc stannate photo-anode, i.e., Zn2SnO4. The cyclic voltammetry revealed oxidation and reduction around 0.40 V (current density ~ 11.1 mA/cm2) and 0.57 V (current density– 11.7 mA/cm2) for Zn2SnO4 photo-anode in presence of light.

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<![CDATA[Optical Properties of Ferroelectric Epitaxial K0.5Na0.5NbO3 Films in Visible to Ultraviolet Range]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da40ab0ee8fa60b899d6

The complex index of refraction in the spectral range of 0.74 to 4.5 eV is studied by variable-angle spectroscopic ellipsometry in ferroelectric K0.5Na0.5NbO3 films. The 20-nm-thick cube-on-cube-type epitaxial films are grown on SrTiO3(001) and DyScO3(011) single-crystal substrates. The films are transparent and exhibit a significant difference between refractive indices Δn = 0.5 at photon energies below 3 eV. The energies of optical transitions are in the range of 3.15–4.30 eV and differ by 0.2–0.3 eV in these films. The observed behavior is discussed in terms of lattice strain and strain-induced ferroelectric polarization in epitaxial perovskite oxide films.

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<![CDATA[Recovery of Crystallographic Texture in Remineralized Dental Enamel]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9daab0ee8fa60b6765f

Dental caries is the most prevalent disease encountered by people of all ages around the world. Chemical changes occurring in the oral environment during the caries process alter the crystallography and microstructure of dental enamel resulting in loss of mechanical function. Little is known about the crystallographic effects of demineralization and remineralization. The motivation for this study was to develop understanding of the caries process at the crystallographic level in order to contribute towards a long term solution. In this study synchrotron X-ray diffraction combined with scanning electron microscopy and scanning microradiography have been used to correlate enamel crystallography, microstructure and mineral concentration respectively in enamel affected by natural caries and following artificial demineralization and remineralization regimes. In particular, the extent of destruction and re-formation of this complex structure has been measured. 2D diffraction patterns collected at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility were used to quantify changes in the preferred orientation (crystallographic texture) and position of the (002) Bragg reflection within selected regions of interest in each tooth slice, and then correlated with the microstructure and local mineral mass. The results revealed that caries and artificial demineralization cause a large reduction in crystallographic texture which is coupled with the loss of mineral mass. Remineralization restores the texture to the original level seen in healthy enamel and restores mineral density. The results also showed that remineralization promotes ordered formation of new crystallites and growth of pre-existing crystallites which match the preferred orientation of healthy enamel. Combining microstructural and crystallographic characterization aids the understanding of caries and erosion processes and assists in the progress towards developing therapeutic treatments to allow affected enamel to regain structural integrity.

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<![CDATA[The Cycloaddition of the Benzimidazolium Ylides with Alkynes: New Mechanistic Insights]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9f3ab0ee8fa60b6f45e

New insights concerning the reaction mechanism in the cycloaddition reaction of benzimidazolium ylides to activated alkynes are presented. The proposed pathway leading both to 2-(1H-pyrrol-1-yl)anilines and to pyrrolo[1,2-a]quinoxalin-4(5H)-ones involves an opening of the imidazole ring from the cycloaddition product, followed by a nucleophilic attack of the aminic nitrogen to a proximal carbonyl group and the elimination of a leaving group. The mechanistic considerations are fully supported by experimental data, including the XRD resolved structure of the key reaction intermediate.

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<![CDATA[Freshwater Fossil Pearls from the Nihewan Basin, Early Early Pleistocene]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db2bab0ee8fa60bd1509

Fossil blister pearls attached to the shells of an Anodonta mollusk from China, early Early Pleistocene, are reported here for the first time. The pearls were investigated in detail using a variety of methods. Micro-CT scanning of the fossil pearls was carried out to discover the inner structure and the pearl nucleus. Using CTAn software, changes in the gray levels of the biggest pearl, which reflect the changing density of the material, were investigated. The results provide us with some clues on how these pearls were formed. Sand grains, shell debris or material with a similar density could have stimulated the development of these pearls. X-ray diffraction analysis of one fossil pearl and the shell to which it was attached reveals that only aragonite exists in both samples. The internal structures of our fossil shells and pearls were investigated using a Scanning Electron Microscope. These investigations throw some light on pearl development in the past.

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<![CDATA[Investigation of Inclusion Complex of Patchouli Alcohol with β-Cyclodextrin]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dabeab0ee8fa60bafbd0

The objective of this study was to improve the stability and water-solubility of patchouli alcohol by complexing with β-cyclodextrin (β-CD). The interactions between patchouli alcohol and β-CD were characterized by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), Fourier transformation-infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy, powder X-ray diffraction (PXRD), and Scanning electron microscope (SEM), respectively. According to molecular modeling method, the enthalpy formation of host-guest illustrated the predominant configuration and the lowest value ΔbGo was -10.8174±1.9235 kcal/mol, suggesting the complex could reduce the energy of the system. The characterization analysis confirmed the formation of PA-CD inclusion complex, and the results indicated the advantage of the inclusion complex in stability and dissolution rates. These results identified PA-CD inclusion complex an effective way for the storage of PA, and better inclusion method still needed to be studied.

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<![CDATA[Asymmetry in the function and dynamics of the cytosolic group II chaperonin CCT/TRiC]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db5aab0ee8fa60bdf4d0

The eukaryotic group II chaperonin, the chaperonin-containing t-complex polypeptide 1 (CCT), plays an important role in cytosolic proteostasis. It has been estimated that as much as 10% of cytosolic proteins interact with CCT during their folding process. CCT is composed of 8 different paralogous subunits. Due to its complicated structure, molecular and biochemical investigations of CCT have been difficult. In this study, we constructed an expression system for CCT from a thermophilic fungus, Chaetomium thermophilum (CtCCT), by using E. coli as a host. As expected, we obtained recombinant CtCCT with a relatively high yield, and it exhibited fairly high thermal stability. We showed the advantages of the overproduction system by characterizing CtCCT variants containing ATPase-deficient subunits. For diffracted X-ray tracking experiment, we removed all surface exposed cysteine residues, and added cysteine residues at the tip of helical protrusions of selected two subunits. Gold nanocrystals were attached onto CtCCTs via gold-thiol bonds and applied for the analysis by diffracted X-ray tracking. Irrespective of the locations of cysteines, it was shown that ATP binding induces tilting motion followed by rotational motion in the CtCCT molecule, like the archaeal group II chaperonins. When gold nanocrystals were attached onto two subunits in the high ATPase activity hemisphere, the CtCCT complex exhibited a fairly rapid response to the motion. In contrast, the response of CtCCT, which had gold nanocrystals attached to the low-activity hemisphere, was slow. These results clearly support the possibility that ATP-dependent conformational change starts with the high-affinity hemisphere and progresses to the low-affinity hemisphere.

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<![CDATA[Structural Abnormalities in the Hair of a Patient with a Novel Ribosomopathy]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dad1ab0ee8fa60bb6629

We report the biophysical characterization of hair from a patient with a de novo ribosomopathy. The patient was diagnosed with a mutation on gene RPS23, which codes for a protein which comprises part of the 40S subunit of the ribosome. The patient presents with a number of phenotypes, including hypotonia, autism, extra teeth, elastic skin, and thin/brittle hair. We combined optical microscopy, tensile tests, and X-ray diffraction experiments on hair samples obtained from the scalp of the patient to a multi-scale characterization of the hair from macroscopic to molecular length scales and observe distinct differences in the biophysical properties in the patient’s hair when compared to hair from other family members. While no differences were observed in the coiled-coil structure of the keratin proteins or the structure of the intermediate filaments, the patient’s hair was 22% thinner, while the Young’s modulus remained roughly constant. The X-ray diffraction results give evidence that the amount of lipids in the cell membrane complex is reduced by 20%, which well accounts for the other observations. The pathologies characterized by these techniques may be used to inform the diagnosis of similar de novo mutations in the future.

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