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2015 Research Showcase
BABP Abstracts
Abstract Title : Electrohypersensitivity: A Connection With Oxidative Stress
Abstract : Electromagnetic radiation (EMR) at many frequencies is reported to engender oxidative stress (OS). A growing number of people report ?electrosensitivity? (ES)− symptoms and health conditions caused by EMR (e.g. smartmeters, cell-towers), often precipitated by a significant EMR exposure. We sought to better characterize ES, and to garner preliminary data on adverse polymorphisms in genes for phase II OS detoxification in ES. 227 adults age 21-81 including 190 with ES completed a survey assessing demographics, ES risk factors, and for those with ES, triggers, symptoms, and impact. The dominant inciting trigger reported was smartmeter exposure (30%). Symptoms commonly affected sleep (94%), attention/memory (81%/83%), headache/pressure (88%/71%), tinnitus/otalgia (79%/63%), and heart rhythm disturbance (85%), compatible with OS mechanisms. Many cited severe compromise from ES to occupation, living situation, mobility, family function and ability to receive healthcare. Pilot testing of detoxigenomics in 30 (cases & controls) encompassed GSTMI, GSTP1, NAT, SOD2, and COMT.
Abstract Title : Microgravity during 30 Days Space Flight Induced Bone Morphological Changes and Bone Mineral Density Decrease in the Mouse Lumbar Spine
Abstract : Bone loss in astronauts after long space operations (i.e., International Space Station (ISS) missions) is a growing concern [1-4]. Specifically, bone loss in the spine gives astronauts a higher risk for spinal fractures when performing routine tasks back on Earth [5]. During space flight, astronauts use bone loss countermeasures (i.e., advanced resistive exercise device, ARED); thus the degree of bone loss purely due to microgravity in astronauts is not known. To study the mechanisms underlying adaptive changes by various physiological systems in response to extended subjection to microgravity, the 30-day Bion-M1 mission was conducted in collaboration between NASA and the Russian Institute of Biomedical Problems (IBMP) [6]. This mission provided an opportunity for us to conduct a controlled evaluation of bone loss in mice spines without the influence of any countermeasures. A previous study on mice lumbar spines after 15 days in low Earth orbit reported significantly lower values in some bone morphological parameters analyzed between the flight and vivarium control groups, but an insignificant change in bone mineral density (BMD) [7]. We hypothesized that a prolonged exposure to microgravity in adult skeletally mature mice would result in a progressive loss of BMD along with the already-reported changes in bone morphology. Micro-CT analyses of the mice lumbar spines were conducted and a significant decrease in BMD was reported along with larger bone morphological changes compared to those reported in the 15-day study, suggesting that an additional 15 days of space flight can result in further significant degeneration of the lumbar spine. This study is significant in that it quantified the changes in bone morphology and decrease in bone mineral density in mice lumbar spines by extended subjection to microgravity without the influence of bone loss countermeasures. References: 1) Morey+. Science, 201, 1138-41, 1978. 2) Orwoll+. JBMR, 28(6), 1243-55, 2013. 3) Sibonga+. Bone, 41, 973-78, 2007. 4) Smith+. Nutrients, 4, 2047-68, 2012. 5) Holick. Bone, 22(5), 105S-111S, 1998. 6) Andreev-Andrievskiy+. PLoS ONE, 9(8): e104830, 2014. 7) Yamaguchi+, ORS Trans; 0077, 2013. ADDITIONAL PRESENTER: Keianne Yamada
Abstract Title : Structural Motifs of Sleepless That Facilitate Regulation of Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors
Abstract : Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are pentameric ligand-gated ion channels that contribute to cognition and to pathophysiological conditions such as nicotine addiction and Alzheimer's disease. We have previously shown that several proteins in the Ly6 family are able to form complexes with and modulate nAChR activity (Puddifoot et. al, 2015). Since all Ly6 proteins are predicted to share a common tertiary structure consisting of a three finger domain, we hypothesized that one or more of these fingers might interact with and regulate nAChR function. To test this hypothesis we generated and assayed deletion constructs of Sleepless (SSS), a Ly6 protein that is required for normal sleep in fruit flies. We found that these deletion constructs encoded stable protein that was capable of trafficking to the cell surface. However, we found that deletion of loop 2 prevented complex formation with nAChRs and suppression of nAChR-mediated currents. Thus, loop 2 of SSS appears to be selectively required for modulation of nAChR function. These studies provide insight into regulation of neurotransmitter receptors by endogenous Ly6 proteins and suggest possible avenues for developing compounds to correct aberrant neurotransmitter signaling in disease states.
Abstract Title : A new marker in the peripheral blood of patients correlates with the prognosis of melanoma
Abstract : Melanoma is currently increasing in incidence and characterized with high metastatic potential. Due to difficulty in treatment, detection of Melanoma in early stages is vital in patient survival. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) is effective in detecting circulating tumor cells (CTC) in peripheral blood. S100A4 protein functioning in motility/invasion, is currently a known prognostication marker for various cancers and used as a positive control for CTC experiments. Our lab has discovered novel markers that could potentially lead to earlier and more accurate detection of Melanoma. Blood samples were collected from 205 patient and examined using qRT-PCR analysis for expression of these novel markers. qRT-PCR analysis showed that these novel markers were significant in prognostication of patient survival. Expression of markers in various levels resulted in either lowered or higher survival. When these novel markers are examined together, results were much more significant than known marker S100A4.