Maternal vitamin A or beta-carotene supplementation in lactating bangladeshi women benefits mothers and infants but does not prevent subclinical deficiency. (1/2102)

The effects of maternal postpartum vitamin A or beta-carotene supplementation on maternal and infant serum retinol concentrations, modified relative dose-response (MRDR) ratios and breast milk vitamin A concentrations were assessed during a community-based trial in Matlab, Bangladesh. At 1-3 wk postpartum, women were randomly assigned to receive either (1) a single dose of 200,000 international units [60,000 retinol equivalents (RE)] vitamin A followed by daily placebos (n = 74), (2) daily doses of beta-carotene [7.8 mg (1300 RE)] (n = 73) or (3) daily placebos (n = 73) until 9 mo postpartum. Compared to placebos, vitamin A supplementation resulted in lower maternal MRDR ratios (i.e., increased liver stores) and higher milk vitamin A concentrations at 3 mo, but these improvements were not sustained. The beta-carotene supplementation acted more slowly, resulting in milk vitamin A concentrations higher than the placebo group only at 9 mo. Irrespective of treatment group, over 50% of women produced milk with low vitamin A concentrations (/=0. 06. We conclude that while both interventions were beneficial, neither was sufficient to correct the underlying subclinical vitamin A deficiency in these women nor to bring their infants into adequate vitamin A status.  (+info)

Structural characterization of the N-linked oligosaccharides in bile salt-stimulated lipase originated from human breast milk. (2/2102)

The detailed structures of N- glycans derived from bile salt-stimulated lipase (BSSL) found in human milk were determined by combining exoglycosidase digestion with matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry. The N- glycan structures were conclusively determined in terms of complexity and degree of fucosylation. Ion-exchange chromatography with pulsed amperometric detection, together with mass-spectral analysis of the esterified N- glycans, indicated the presence of monosialylated structures. The molecular mass profile of esterified N- glycans present in BSSL further permitted the more detailed studies through collision-induced dissociation (CID) and sequential exoglycosidase cleavages. The N- glycan structures were elucidated to be complex/dibranched, fucosylated/complex/dibranched, monosialylated/complex/dibranched, and monosialylated/fucosylated/dibranched entities.  (+info)

Molecular characterization of alpha-lactalbumin folding variants that induce apoptosis in tumor cells. (3/2102)

This study characterized a protein complex in human milk that induces apoptosis in tumor cells but spares healthy cells. The active fraction was purified from casein by anion exchange chromatography. Unlike other casein components the active fraction was retained by the ion exchanger and eluted after a high salt gradient. The active fraction showed N-terminal amino acid sequence identity with human milk alpha-lactalbumin and mass spectrometry ruled out post-translational modifications. Size exclusion chromatography resolved monomers and oligomers of alpha-lactalbumin that were characterized using UV absorbance, fluorescence, and circular dichroism spectroscopy. The high molecular weight oligomers were kinetically stable against dissociation into monomers and were found to have an essentially retained secondary structure but a less well organized tertiary structure. Comparison with native monomeric and molten globule alpha-lactalbumin showed that the active fraction contains oligomers of alpha-lactalbumin that have undergone a conformational switch toward a molten globule-like state. Oligomerization appears to conserve alpha-lactalbumin in a state with molten globule-like properties at physiological conditions. The results suggest differences in biological properties between folding variants of alpha-lactalbumin.  (+info)

Enzymatic synthesis of natural and 13C enriched linear poly-N-acetyllactosamines as ligands for galectin-1. (4/2102)

As part of a study of protein-carbohydrate interactions, linear N-acetyl-polyllactosamines [Galbeta1,4GlcNAcbeta1,3]nwere synthesized at the 10-100 micromol scale using enzymatic methods. The methods described also provided specifically [1-13C]-galactose-labeled tetra- and hexasaccharides ([1-13C]-Galbeta1,4GlcNAcbeta1,3Galbeta1,4Glc and Galbeta1, 4GlcNAcbeta1,3[1-13C]Galbeta1,4GlcNAcbeta1,3Galbeta 1,4Glc) suitable for NMR studies. Two series of oligosaccharides were produced, with either glucose or N-acetlyglucosamine at the reducing end. In both cases, large amounts of starting primer were available from human milk oligosaccharides (trisaccharide primer GlcNAcbeta1,3Galbeta1, 4Glc) or via transglycosylation from N-acetyllactosamine. Partially purified and immobilized glycosyltransferases, such as bovine milk beta1,4 galactosyltransferase and human serum beta1,3 N- acetylglucosaminyltransferase, were used for the synthesis. All the oligo-saccharide products were characterized by1H and13C NMR spectroscopy and MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. The target molecules were then used to study their interactions with recombinant galectin-1, and initial1H NMR spectroscopic results are presented to illustrate this approach. These results indicate that, for oligomers containing up to eight sugars, the principal interaction of the binding site of galectin-1 is with the terminal N-acetyllactosamine residues.  (+info)

Transmission of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 through breast-feeding: how can it be prevented? (5/2102)

One-third to two-thirds of maternal transmission of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection to breast-fed infants can be attributed to ingestion of breast milk. The presence of HIV-1 as cell-free and as cell-associated virus in milk has been documented. Several substances in breast milk may be protective against transmission, including maternal anti-HIV antibodies, vitamin A, lactoferrin, and secretory leukocyte protease inhibitor. The portal of virus entry in the infant's gastrointestinal tract is unknown but may involve breaches in mucosal surfaces, transport across M cells, or direct infection of other epithelial cells, such as enterocytes. Timing of transmission of HIV-1 during lactation should be further clarified. An early rebound of plasma viremia after withdrawal of antiretrovirals was recently detected. This rebound may reduce the benefit of antiretroviral prophylaxis when women breast-feed their infants. Interventions should be viewed from the public health perspective of risks of infant morbidity and mortality associated with breast-feeding versus risks from formula-feeding.  (+info)

Quantitative determination of N-acetylglucosamine residues at the non-reducing ends of peptidoglycan chains by enzymic attachment of [14C]-D-galactose. (6/2102)

The ability of human milk galactosyltransferase to attach D-galactose residues quantitatively to the C-4 of N-acetylglucosamine moieties at the ends of oligosaccharides has been utilized for the specific labeling and quantitative determination of the chain length of the glycan moiety of the bacterial cell wall. The average polysaccharide chain length of the soluble, uncrosslinked peptidoglycan secreted by Micrococcus luteus cells on incubation with penicillin G was studied with this technique and found to be approximately 70 hexosamines long. Furthermore, the peptidoglycan chain length of Escherichia coli sacculi of different cell shapes and dimensions was determined both in rod-shaped cells and in filaments induced by temperature shift of a division mutant or by addition of cephalexin or nalidixic acid. The average chain length found in most of these sacculi was between 70 and 100 hexosamines long. Small spherical 'mini' cells had chain lengths similar to those of the isogenic rod-like cells.  (+info)

Dynamic epigenetic regulation of initial O-glycosylation by UDP-N-Acetylgalactosamine:Peptide N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferases. site-specific glycosylation of MUC1 repeat peptide influences the substrate qualities at adjacent or distant Ser/Thr positions. (7/2102)

In search of possible epigenetic regulatory mechanisms ruling the initiation of O-glycosylation by polypeptide:N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferases, we studied the influences of mono- and disaccharide substituents of glycopeptide substrates on the site-specific in vitro addition of N-acetylgalactosamine (GalNAc) residues by recombinant GalNAc-Ts (rGalNAc-T1, -T2, and -T3). The substrates were 20-mers (HGV20) or 21-mers (AHG21) of the MUC1 tandem repeat peptide carrying GalNAcalpha or Galbeta1-3GalNAcalpha at different positions. The enzymatic products were analyzed by MALDI mass spectrometry and Edman degradation for the number and sites of incorporated GalNAc. Disaccharide placed on the first position of the diad Ser-16-Thr-17 prevents glycosylation of the second, whereas disaccharide on the second position of Ser-16-Thr-17 and Thr-5-Ser-6 does not prevent GalNAc addition to the first. Multiple disaccharide substituents suppress any further glycosylation at the remaining sites. Glycosylation of Ser-16 is negatively affected by glycosylation at position -6 (Thr-10) or -10 (Ser-6) and is inhibited by disaccharide at position -11 (Thr-5), suggesting the occurrence of glycosylation-induced effects on distant acceptor sites. Kinetic studies revealed the accelerated addition of GalNAc to Ser-16 adjacent to GalNAc-substituted Thr-17, demonstrating positive regulatory effects induced by glycosylation on the monosaccharide level. These antagonistic effects of mono- and disaccharides could underlie a postulated regulatory mechanism.  (+info)

A negative iodine balance is found in healthy neonates compared with neonates with thyroid agenesis. (8/2102)

We studied the effects of the presence or absence of the thyroid gland on the iodine metabolism and excretion in term Dutch newborns by performing a retrospective study of the urinary iodine excretion in 193 term newborns with abnormal congenital hypothyroidism screening results. Thirty-six euthyroid newborns with decreased thyroxine-binding globulin levels were compared with 157 hypothyroid patients, 54 due to thyroid agenesis and 103 due to thyroid dysgenesis. A significant difference in the urinary iodine excretion was observed between the agenesis group (mean: 28 micrograms/24 h) and the euthyroid newborns (mean: 46 micrograms/24 h, P=0.001). In conclusion, healthy, euthyroid, term newborns excreted more iodine in their urine than newborns with thyroid agenesis. These results strongly indicated the existence of a temporarily negative iodine balance: the excretion of iodine prevailed over the intake and the newborn's thyroidal iodine, stored during pregnancy, could be used for thyroxine synthesis in the postnatal period. Since healthy term neonates were able to maintain adequate plasma free thyroxine concentrations under normal TSH stimulation, the prenatally acquired iodine stores could be considered sufficiently high to compensate for the transient postnatal losses.  (+info)