Authors: Sarah L. Whiteley, Meghan A. Castelli, Duminda S.B. Dissanayake, Clare E. Holleley, Arthur Georges
Journal: Sexual Development
Date Added: Jun 11, 2021
Authors: Sarah L. Whiteley, Meghan A. Castelli, Duminda S.B. Dissanayake, Clare E. Holleley, Arthur Georges
Journal: Sexual Development
Sex reversal is the process by which an individual develops a phenotypic sex that is discordant with its chromosomal or genotypic sex. It occurs in many lineages of ectothermic vertebrates, such as fish, amphibians, and at least one agamid and one scincid reptile species. Sex reversal is usually triggered by an environmental cue that alters the genetically determined process of sexual differentiation, but it can also be caused by exposure to exogenous chemicals, hormones, or pollutants. Despite the occurrence of both temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD) and genetic sex determination (GSD) broadly among reptiles, only 2 species of squamates have thus far been demonstrated to possess sex reversal in nature (GSD with overriding thermal influence). The lack of species with unambiguously identified sex reversal is not necessarily a reflection of a low incidence of this trait among reptiles. Indeed, sex reversal may be relatively common in reptiles, but little is known of its prevalence, the mechanisms by which it occurs, or the consequences of sex reversal for species in the wild under a changing climate. In this review, we present a roadmap to the discovery of sex reversal in reptiles, outlining the various techniques that allow new occurrences of sex reversal to be identified, the molecular mechanisms that may be involved in sex reversal and how to identify them, and approaches for assessing the impacts of sex reversal in wild populations. We discuss the evolutionary implications of sex reversal and use the central bearded dragon (<i>Pogona vitticeps</i>) and the eastern three-lined skink (<i>Bassiana duperreyi</i>) as examples of how species with opposing patterns of sex reversal may be impacted differently by our rapidly changing climate. Ultimately, this review serves to highlight the importance of understanding sex reversal both in the laboratory and in wild populations and proposes practical solutions to foster future research.
Dufulin is a highly effective antiviral pesticide used in plants. In this study, a seven-day experiment was conducted to evaluate the effects of Dufulin at five different concentrations (1 × 10−4, 1 × 10−3, 1 × 10−2, 0.1, and 1 mg/L) on Tubifex. LC-MS-based metabolome analysis detected a total of 5356 features in positive and 9110 features in negative, of which 41 showed significant changes and were identified as differential metabolites. Four metabolic pathways were selected for further study. Detailed analysis revealed that Dufulin exposure affected the urea cycle of Tubifex, probably via argininosuccinate lyase (ASL) inhibition. It also affected the fatty acid metabolism, leading to changes in the concentration of free fatty acids in Tubifex. Furthermore, the changes in metabolites after exposure to Dufulin at 1 × 10−2 mg/L were different from those at the other concentrations.
Cryptosporidiosis is a major human health concern globally. Despite well-established methods, misdiagnosis remains common. Our understanding of the cryptosporidiosis biochemical mechanism remains limited, compounding the difficulty of clinical diagnosis. Here, we used a systems biology approach to investigate the underlying biochemical interactions in C57BL/6J mice infected with Cryptosporidium parvum. Faecal samples were collected daily following infection. Blood, liver tissues and luminal contents were collected 10 days post infection. High-resolution liquid chromatography and low-resolution gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry were used to analyse the proteomes and metabolomes of these samples. Faeces and luminal contents were additionally subjected to 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Univariate and multivariate statistical analysis of the acquired data illustrated altered host and microbial energy pathways during infection. Glycolysis/citrate cycle metabolites were depleted, while short-chain fatty acids and D-amino acids accumulated. An increased abundance of bacteria associated with a stressed gut environment was seen. Host proteins involved in energy pathways and Lactobacillus glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase were upregulated during cryptosporidiosis. Liver oxalate also increased during infection. Microbiome–parasite relationships were observed to be more influential than the host–parasite association in mediating major biochemical changes in the mouse gut during cryptosporidiosis. Defining this parasite–microbiome interaction is the first step towards building a comprehensive cryptosporidiosis model towards biomarker discovery, and rapid and accurate diagnostics.
The effects of intravenous gefitinib (10 mg/kg), an anilinoquinazoline thymidylate kinase inhibitor (TKI), selective for the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), on the urinary metabotypes of mice were studied. We hypothesized that, in response to the administration of gefitinib, there might be significant changes in the excretion of many endogenous metabolites in the urine, which could be correlated with the plasma pharmacokinetics (PK) of the drug. In order to investigate this conjecture, urine from male C57 BL6 mice was collected before IV dosing (10 mg/kg) and at 0–3, 3–8, and 8–24 h post-dose. The samples were profiled by UPLC/IM/MS and compared with the profiles obtained from undosed control mice with the data analyzed using multivariate statistical analysis (MVA). This process identified changes in endogenous metabolites over time and these were compared with drug and drug metabolite PK and excretion. While the MVA of these UPLC/IM/MS data did indeed reveal time-related changes for endogenous metabolites that appeared to be linked to drug administration, this analysis did not highlight the presence of either the drug or its metabolites in urine. Endogenous metabolites affected by gefitinib administration were identified by comparison of mass spectral, retention time and ion mobility-derived collision cross section data (compared to authentic standards wherever possible). The changes in endogenous metabolites resulting from gefitinib administration showed both increases (e.g., tryptophan, taurocholic acid, and the dipeptide lysyl-arginine) and decreases (e.g., deoxyguanosine, 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine, and asparaginyl-histidine) relative to the control animals. By 8–24 h, the post-dose concentrations of most metabolites had returned to near control values. From these studies, we conclude that changes in the amounts of endogenous metabolites excreted in the urine mirrored, to some extent, the plasma pharmacokinetics of the drug. This phenomenon is similar to pharmacodynamics, where the pharmacological effects are related to the drug concentrations, and by analogy, we have termed this effect “pharmacometabodynamics”.
The compositions and contents of metabolites in the pulp tissue play critical roles in the fruit quality for table grape. In this study, the effects of root restriction (RR) on the primary and secondary metabolites of pulp tissue at five developmental stages were studied at the metabolomics level, using “Red Alexandria” grape berry (Vitis vinifera L.) as materials. The main results were as follows: 283 metabolites were annotated by using ultra-high performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS); 28 and 16 primary metabolites contents were increased and decreased, and 11 and 19 secondary metabolites contents were increased and decreased, respectively, along the berry development; RR significantly decreased 12 metabolites (four amino acids and derivatives, three organic acids, four flavonoids and one other compound) contents, and improved 40 metabolites (22 amino acids and derivatives, six nucleotides, four carbohydrates, four cofactors, three cinnamic acids and one other compound) accumulation at the different developmental stages. Altogether, our study would be helpful to increase our understanding of grape berry’s responses to RR stress.
In this study, a metabolomic investigation was presented to correlate single polyphenolic compounds in apple pulp with quality characteristics such as antioxidant activity and content of phenolic compounds and anthocyanins in apple skin. Since the concentration of these compounds is influenced by environmental factors, the twenty-two apple cultivars originate from the same site. The polyphenolic compounds were analyzed by ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography coupled with triple quadrupole mass spectrometry (UHPLC-QqQ-MS/MS). The antioxidant activity, phenolic content, and anthocyanins were evaluated on the sunny and the shady sides of apple skin by spectrometric assays. In old apple varieties, the measured parameters were higher than in the commercial and red-fleshed varieties. By contrast, the profile of flavan-3-ols and anthocyanins was variable amongst commercial and red-fleshed varieties. The partial least square (PLS) method was applied to investigate the association between the skin proprieties and the metabolic profile of the pulp. The highest coefficients of determination in prediction (Q2) were obtained for compounds quantified in old cultivars. These results provided information to define the old apple varieties as a reliable group based on the pathway of the antioxidant compounds and anthocyanins content. Our results show the possibility to find cultivars with promising health features based on their content of polyphenols suitable for commercialization or breeding.
Objective. To review the clinical usefulness of N-acetylcysteine (NAC) as treatment or adjunctive therapy in a number of medical conditions. Use in Tylenol overdose, cystic fibrosis, and chronic obstructive lung disease has been well documented, but there is emerging evidence many other conditions would benefit from this safe, simple, and inexpensive intervention. Quality of Evidence. PubMed, several books, and conference proceedings were searched for articles on NAC and health conditions listed above reviewing supportive evidence. This study uses a traditional integrated review format, and clinically relevant information is assessed using the American Family Physician Evidence-Based Medicine Toolkit. A table summarizing the potential mechanisms of action for N-acetylcysteine in these conditions is presented. Main Message. N-acetylcysteine may be useful as an adjuvant in treating various medical conditions, especially chronic diseases. These conditions include polycystic ovary disease, male infertility, sleep apnea, acquired immune deficiency syndrome, influenza, parkinsonism, multiple sclerosis, peripheral neuropathy, stroke outcomes, diabetic neuropathy, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, schizophrenia, bipolar illness, and obsessive compulsive disorder; it can also be useful as a chelator for heavy metals and nanoparticles. There are also a number of other conditions that may show benefit; however, the evidence is not as robust. Conclusion. The use of N-acetylcysteine should be considered in a number of conditions as our population ages and levels of glutathione drop. Supplementation may contribute to reducing morbidity and mortality in some chronic conditions as outlined in the article.
Background. Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is a type of glucose intolerance disorder that first occurs during women’s pregnancy. The main diagnostic method for GDM is based on the midpregnancy oral glucose tolerance test. The rise of metabolomics has expanded the opportunity to better identify early diagnostic biomarkers and explore possible pathogenesis. Methods. We collected blood serum from 34 GDM patients and 34 normal controls for a LC-MS-based metabolomics study. Results. 184 metabolites were increased and 86 metabolites were decreased in the positive ion mode, and 65 metabolites were increased and 71 were decreased in the negative ion mode. Also, it was found that the unsaturated fatty acid metabolism was disordered in GDM. Ten metabolites with the most significant differences were selected for follow-up studies. Since the diagnostic specificity and sensitivity of a single differential metabolite are not definitive, we combined these metabolites to prepare a ROC curve. We found a set of metabolite combination with the highest sensitivity and specificity, which included eicosapentaenoic acid, docosahexaenoic acid, docosapentaenoic acid, arachidonic acid, citric acid, α-ketoglutaric acid, and genistein. The area under the curves (AUC) value of those metabolites was 0.984 between the GDM and control group. Conclusions. Our results provide a direction for the mechanism of GDM research and demonstrate the feasibility of developing a diagnostic test that can distinguish between GDM and normal controls clearly. Our findings were helpful to develop novel biomarkers for precision or personalized diagnosis for GDM. In addition, we provide a critical insight into the pathological and biological mechanisms for GDM.
Fishes are the only vertebrates that undergo sex change during their lifetime, but even within this group, a unique reproductive strategy is displayed by only 1.5% of the teleosts. This lability in alternating sexual fate is the result of the simultaneous suppression and activation of opposing male and female networks. Here, we provide a brief review summarizing recent advances in our understanding of the environmental cues that trigger sex change and their perception, integration, and translation into molecular cascades that convert the sex of an individual. We particularly focus on molecular events underpinning the complex behavioral and morphological transformation involved in sex change, dissecting the main molecular players and regulatory networks that shape the transformation of one sex into the opposite. We show that histological changes and molecular pathways governing gonadal reorganization are better described than the neuroendocrine basis of sex change and that, despite important advances, information is lacking for the majority of hermaphrodite species. We highlight significant gaps in our knowledge of how sex change takes place and suggest future research directions.
Background and Objective. Atherosclerotic extent was proved to be associated with adverse cardiac events. Risk scores derived by coronary computed tomography angiography (CCTA) could identify high-risk group among patients with nonobstructive coronary artery disease (CAD), but the ability is still uncertain in the presence of diabetes mellitus (DM). The purpose of this study was to investigate the prognostic value of the atherosclerotic extent shown by CCTA in diabetic patients with nonobstructive CAD. Methods and Results. 813 DM patients (mean age 58.9 ± 9.9 years, 48.1% male) referred for CCTA due to suspected CAD in 2015-2017 were consecutively included. During a median follow-up of 31.77 months, 50 major adverse cardiovascular events (MACEs) (6.15%) were experienced, including 2 cardiovascular deaths, 14 nonfatal myocardial infarctions, 27 unstable anginas requiring hospitalization, and 7 strokes. Three groups were defined based on coronary stenosis combined with Leiden score as normal, nonobstructive Leiden < 5 , and nonobstructive Leiden ≥ 5 . Cox models were used to assess the prognosis of plaque burden within these groups. An incremental incidence of MACE rates was observed. After adjustment for age, gender, and presence of high-risk plaque, the group of Leiden ≥ 5 showed a higher risk than Leiden < 5 (HR: 1.88, 95% CI: 1.03-3.42, p = 0.039 ). Similar results were observed when segment involvement score (SIS) was used for sensitivity analysis. Conclusion. Atherosclerotic extent was associated with the prognosis of DM patients with nonobstructive coronary artery disease, highlighting the importance of better risk stratification and management.