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(1/3372) Quantitative analysis of constitutive and 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin-induced cytochrome P450 1B1 expression in human lymphocytes.

Exposure to 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD or dioxin) results in a broad spectrum of biological responses, including altered metabolism, disruption of normal hormone signaling pathways, reproductive and developmental effects, and cancer. Cytochrome P450 1B1 (CYP1B1) is a dioxin-inducible gene that is active in the formation of 4-hydroxyestradiol, a potentially genotoxic catechol estrogen. Therefore, the analysis of CYP1B1 in humans may be useful in establishing relationships between dioxin exposure and adverse health effects. In this study, we examined the expression of CYP1B1 in human peripheral blood lymphocytes of unexposed individuals using a quantitative reverse transcription-PCR method. Absolute CYP1B1 RNA levels varied more than 30-fold in uncultured mononuclear cells obtained from 10 individuals. In vitro treatment of mitogen-stimulated lymphocytes with TCDD for 1-5 days of culture resulted in a peak induction of CYP1B1 after 3 days. The induction of CYP1B1 RNA levels after 3 days of culture was dose-dependent, exhibited a maximum response above 10 nM TCDD, and varied greatly among different individuals. However, the half maximal dose required for this induction was similar between individuals and comparable to that observed in the MCF-7 and HepG2 human cell lines. These observations indicate that CYP1B1 exhibits variable constitutive expression and is inducible in vitro by TCDD in human lymphocytes and that the magnitude of induction varies within the population. These data define the suitability of CYP1B1 for use as a mechanistically based biomarker in ongoing molecular epidemiological studies of human populations exposed to dioxins and related chemicals that bind the aromatic hydrocarbon receptor.  (+info)

(2/3372) Molecular markers demonstrate that the first described multidrug-resistant Mycobacterium bovis outbreak was due to Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

We genetically characterized multidrug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex strains which caused a nosocomial outbreak of tuberculosis affecting six human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-positive patients and one HIV-negative staff member (E. Bouvet, E. Casalino, G. Mendoza-Sassi, S. Lariven, E. Vallee, M. Pernet, S. Gottot, and F. Vachon, AIDS 7:1453-1460, 1993). The strains showed all the phenotypic characteristics of Mycobacterium bovis. They presented a high copy number of IS6110, the spacers 40 to 43 in the direct repeat locus, and the mtp40 fragment. They lacked the G-A mutation at position 285 in the oxyR gene and the C-G mutation at position 169 in the pncA gene. These genetic characteristics revealed that these were dysgonic, slow-growing M. tuberculosis strains mimicking the M. bovis phenotype, probably as a consequence of cellular alterations associated with the multidrug resistance. Spoligotyping and IS6110 restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis confirmed that the outbreak was due to a single strain. However, the IS6110 RFLP pattern of the strain isolated from the last patient, diagnosed three years after the index case, differed slightly from the patterns of the other six strains. A model of a possible genetic event is presented to explain this divergence. This study stresses the value of using several independent molecular markers to identify multidrug-resistant tubercle bacilli.  (+info)

(3/3372) Molecular evidence for heterogeneity of the multiple-drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis population in Scotland (1990 to 1997).

Multiple-drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MDR-MTB) has been well studied in hospitals or health care institutions and in human immunodeficiency virus-infected populations. However, the characteristics of MDR-MTB in the community have not been well investigated. An understanding of its prevalence and circulation within the community will help to estimate the problem and optimize the strategies for control and prevention of its development and transmission. In this study, MDR-MTB isolates from Scotland collected between 1990 and 1997 were characterized, along with non-drug-resistant isolates. The results showed that they were genetically diverse, suggesting they were unrelated to each other and had probably evolved independently. Several new alleles of rpoB, katG, and ahpC were identified: rpoB codon 525 (ACC-->AAC; Thr525Asn); katG codon 128 (CGG-->CAG; Arg128Gln) and codon 291 (GCT-->CCT; Ala291Pro); and the ahpC synonymous substitution at codon 6 (ATT-->ATC). One of the MDR-MTB isolates from an Asian patient had an IS6110 restriction fragment length polymorphism pattern very similar to that of the MDR-MTB W strain and had the same drug resistance-related alleles but did not have any epidemiological connection with the W strains. Additionally, a cluster of M. tuberculosis isolates was identified in our collection of 715 clinical isolates; the isolates in this cluster had genetic backgrounds very similar to those of the W strains, one of which had already developed multiple drug resistances. The diverse population of MDR-MTB in Scotland, along with a low incidence of drug-resistant M. tuberculosis, has implications for the control of the organism and prevention of its spread.  (+info)

(4/3372) Analysis with a combination of macrorestriction endonucleases reveals a high degree of polymorphism among Bordetella pertussis isolates in eastern France.

From 1990 to 1996, routine screening for whooping cough identified 399 patients with a calmodulin-dependent adenylate cyclase-positive test result and yielded 69 Bordetella pertussis isolates. None of the patients were fully vaccinated, and most were less than 6 months old. Analysis of total DNA by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) after XbaI, SpeI, or DraI macrorestriction yielded 19, 15, and 5 different patterns, respectively, whereas ribotyping failed to demonstrate any strain polymorphism. Discrimination among the isolates was improved by combining the PFGE profiles. Some patterns were more frequent, but the corresponding patients were not clearly epidemiologically related. The patterns for two strains obtained during a 3-month period from patients who were neighbors differed by the length of a single DNA fragment. These data strongly suggest that one type of isolate is widely spread throughout the world and is carried by individuals other than patients who develop a true illness.  (+info)

(5/3372) Use of molecular subtyping to document long-term persistence of Corynebacterium diphtheriae in South Dakota.

Enhanced surveillance of patients with upper respiratory symptoms in a Northern Plains community revealed that approximately 4% of them were infected by toxigenic Corynebacterium diphtheriae of both mitis and gravis biotypes, showing that the organism is still circulating in the United States. Toxigenic C. diphtheriae was isolated from five members of four households. Four molecular subtyping methods-ribotyping, multilocus enzyme electrophoresis (MEE), random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD), and single-strand conformation polymorphism-were used to molecularly characterize these strains and compare them to 17 archival South Dakota strains dating back to 1973 through 1983 and to 5 isolates collected from residents of diverse regions of the United States. Ribotyping and RAPD clearly demonstrated the household transmission of isolates and provided precise information on the circulation of several distinct strains within three households. By MEE, most recent and archival South Dakota strains were identified as closely related and clustered within the newly identified ET (electrophoretic type) 215 complex. Furthermore, three recent South Dakota isolates and eight archival South Dakota isolates were indistinguishable by both ribotyping and RAPD. All of these molecular methods showed that recent South Dakota isolates and archival South Dakota isolates were more closely related to each other than to the C. diphtheriae strains isolated in other parts of the United States or worldwide. The data also supported the improbability of importation of C. diphtheriae into this area and rather strongly suggest the long-term persistence of the organism in this region.  (+info)

(6/3372) Geographic distribution and evolution of Sindbis virus in Australia.

The molecular epidemiology and evolution of Sindbis (SIN) virus in Australia was examined. Several SIN virus strains isolated from other countries were also included in the analysis. Two regions of the virus genome were sequenced including a 418 bp region of the E2 gene and a 484 bp region containing part of the junction region and the 5' end of the C gene. Analysis of the nucleotide and deduced amino acid sequence data from 40 SIN virus isolates clearly separated the Paleoarctic/Ethiopian and Oriental/Australian genetic types of SIN virus. Examination of the Australian strains showed a temporal rather than geographic relationship. This is consistent with the virus having migratory birds as the major vertebrate host, as it allows for movement of virus over vast areas of the continent over a relatively short period of time. The results suggest that the virus is being periodically redistributed over the continent from an enzootic focus of evolving SIN virus. However, SIN virus strains isolated from mosquitoes collected in the south-west of Australia appear to represent a new SIN virus lineage, which is distinct from the Paleoarctic/Ethiopian and Oriental/Australian lineages. Given the widespread geographic dispersal of the Paleoarctic/Ethiopian and Oriental/Australian lineages, it is surprising that the South-west genetic type is so restricted in its area of circulation. Nucleotide sequence data from the C gene of the prototype strain of the alphavirus Whataroa were also determined. This virus was found to be genetically distinct from the SIN virus isolates included in the present study; however, it is clearly SIN-like and appears to have evolved from a SIN-like ancestral virus.  (+info)

(7/3372) Molecular typing of Salmonella serotype Thompson strains isolated from human and animal sources.

One-hundred-and-thirteen isolates of Salmonella serotype Thompson from diverse sources in seven countries were characterized by PvuII ribotyping and IS200 fingerprinting. Ten PvuII ribotypes were observed. The predominant PvuII ribotype 1 represented a major clone of world-wide distribution but was not found in Australia; PvuII ribotypes 2 and 3 represented minor clones. HincII ribotyping discriminated subtypes within PvuII ribotype 1: HincII ribotype 1 was distributed widely but HincII ribotype 2 was found mainly in Scottish isolates. None of 101 isolates of PvuII ribotypes 1-3 contained copies of IS200. All 12 isolates of PvuII ribotypes 4-10 were from Australia and 7 of them contained copies of IS200 of 5 different profiles. These results suggest the existence of at least two lineages of Salmonella Thompson with a different geographical distribution. The finding that most isolates from man and poultry in Scotland belonged to the same ribotype (PvuII 1/HincII 2) and were IS200-negative suggests that poultry is an important source of human infection in Scotland.  (+info)

(8/3372) Molecular epidemiology of respiratory syncytial virus in The Gambia.

Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection in The Gambia occurs seasonally in association with the rainy season. This study examined the genetic variability of RSV isolates from four consecutive epidemics from 1993-6. Each epidemic was made up of a number of variants which were replaced in subsequent epidemics. Analysis of attachment (G) protein gene sequences showed that isolates were closely related to those observed in the rest of the world. However, many isolates from 1993 and 1994 were unlike other isolates observed in the developed world during this period and were more similar to isolates from 1984 in Europe. In addition, the most commonly observed genotype in the UK in the 1990s was not detected in The Gambia during this period.  (+info)