Liquid storage of miniature boar semen. (1/2075)

The effects of liquid storage at 15 degrees C on the fertilizing ability of miniature pig semen were investigated. Characterization of ejaculated semen from 3 miniature boars was carried out. Semen volume and pH were similar among these boars. In one of the boars, sperm motility was slightly low, and sperm concentration and total number of sperm were significantly lower than in the others (P < 0.01). Seminal plasma of the semen was substituted with various extenders (Kiev, Androhep, BTS and Modena) by centrifugation and semen was stored for 7 days at 15 degrees C. Sperm motility was estimated daily at 37 degrees C. For complete substitution of seminal plasma, Modena was significantly more efficient than the other extenders (P < 0.001) in retaining sperm motility. Semen from each of the 3 miniature boars that had been stored for 5 to 7 days at 15 degrees C in Modena was used for artificial insemination of 15 miniature sows. The farrowing rates were 100, 100 and 60%, and litter sizes were 6.4 +/- 1.5, 5.8 +/- 0.8 and 5.0 +/- 1.0 for each boar semen, respectively. The boar that sired the smallest farrowing rate was the same one that showed lower seminal quality with respect to sperm motility, sperm concentration and total number of sperm. These results suggest that miniature boar semen can be stored for at least 5 days at 15 degrees C by the substitution of seminal plasma with Modena extender.  (+info)

Anti-CD45RB antibody deters xenograft rejection by modulating T cell priming and homing. (2/2075)

Pancreatic islet xenotransplantation has been advocated as a way of overcoming the shortage of human donor tissue for the treatment of type 1 diabetes. However, the potent immune response against xenografts is a major barrier to their use. We show that a short course of the anti-CD45RB antibody, MB23G2, prolongs survival of fetal pig pancreas grafts in mice. To investigate this effect further we used an i.p. xenograft model in which both donor pig cells and host inflammatory cells can be expediently recovered and analyzed. Graft prolongation was associated with reduced T cell and macrophage infiltration, and reduced production of both T(h)1 and T(h)2 cytokines at the graft site. Graft survival was further increased and T cell infiltration further reduced by combining anti-CD45RB antibody with co-stimulation blockade. The primary effect of anti-CD45RB antibody may be on CD4 T cells, in keeping with the marked reduction in T cell cytokine production in both spleen and graft sites. This concurs with previous studies in allogeneic models that indicate that this antibody perturbs T cell responses by modifying signaling via the TCR. In addition, anti-CD45RB treatment led to reduced expression of LFA-1 and CD62 ligand (CD62L) on CD4 T cells, independent of antigenic challenge. LFA-1 may enhance co-stimulation, and both LFA-1 and CD62L are involved in T cell trafficking. Their reduced expression provides an explanation why the T cell pool is reduced in lymph nodes. We conclude that modulation of inflammation against xenografts by anti-CD45RB antibody is due to effects on both T cell priming and trafficking.  (+info)

The effect of testosterone on regional blood flow in prepubertal anaesthetized pigs. (3/2075)

This work was undertaken to study the effects of testosterone on the coronary, mesenteric, renal and iliac circulations and to determine the mechanisms of action involved. In prepubertal pigs of both sexes anaesthetized with sodium pentobarbitone, changes in left circumflex or anterior descending coronary, superior mesenteric, left renal and left external iliac blood flow caused by intra-arterial infusion of testosterone were assessed using electromagnetic flowmeters. Changes in heart rate and arterial blood pressure were prevented by atrial pacing and by connecting the arterial system to a pressurized reservoir containing Ringer solution. In 12 pigs, intra-arterial infusion of testosterone for 5 min to achieve a stable intra-arterial concentration of 1 microg l(-1) increased coronary, mesenteric, renal and iliac blood flow without affecting the maximum rate of change of left ventricular systolic pressure (left ventricular dP/dt(max)) and filling pressures of the heart. In a further five pigs, a concentration-response curve was obtained by graded increases in the intra-arterial concentration of the hormone between 0.125 and 8 microg l(-1). The mechanisms of these responses were studied in the 12 pigs by repeating the experiment after haemodynamic variables had returned to the control values before infusions. In six pigs, blockade of muscarinic cholinoceptors and adrenoceptors with atropine, propranolol and phentolamine did not affect the responses caused by intra-arterial infusion of testosterone performed to achieve a stable intra-arterial concentration of 1 microg l(-1). In the same pigs and in the remaining six pigs, the increases in coronary, mesenteric, renal and iliac blood flow caused by intra-arterial infusion of testosterone performed to achieve a stable intra-arterial concentration of 1 microg l(-1) were prevented by intra-arterial injection of N(omega)-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester. The present study shows that intra-arterial infusion of testosterone dilated coronary, mesenteric, renal and iliac circulations. The mechanism of this response involved the release of nitric oxide.  (+info)

Mycobacterium palustre sp. nov., a potentially pathogenic, slowly growing mycobacterium isolated from clinical and veterinary specimens and from Finnish stream waters. (4/2075)

Taxonomic studies were performed on a phenotypically homogeneous group of 13 mycobacteria isolated from clinical, veterinary and stream-water samples. The methods applied included chromatographic analyses of bacterial lipids, biochemical tests and sequencing of the 16S rDNA and the internal transcribed spacer 1 (ITS1) region. Positive results in urease, Tween 80 hydrolysis and pyrazinamidase tests and a negative result in a semi-quantitative catalase test, combined with the ability to grow at 42 degrees C, distinguished this group among the yellow-pigmented, slowly growing mycobacteria. Unique fatty acid and mycolic acid profiles in chromatographic analyses and the results of gene sequencing indicated that the novel isolates represent a previously undescribed species, for which the name Mycobacterium palustre sp. nov. is proposed. The fatty acid profile obtained by GLC was characterized by the presence of several methyl-branched fatty acid markers. The most prominent markers were 2-methyleicosanoic, tetracosanoic and hexacosanoic acids. According to 16S rDNA sequencing, M. palustre is phylogenetically closest to Mycobacterium kubicae, a recently described species. M. palustre gives a false-positive result in a hybridization test with the AccuProbe Mycobacterium avium complex. One of the strains was isolated from a lymph-node biopsy from a child with cervical lymphadenitis. Thus, M. palustre should be listed among potential inducers of paediatric lymphadenitis. The veterinary isolates originated from the lymph nodes of slaughter pigs. The majority of the strains were recovered from natural waters, which highlights the role of the environment as a source of potentially pathogenic mycobacteria. The type strain of M. palustre is strain E846T (= DSM 44572T = ATCC BAA-377T).  (+info)

Transforming growth factor-beta and epidermal growth factor synergistically stimulate epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) through a MEK-dependent mechanism in primary cultured pig thyrocytes. (5/2075)

Enhancement of tumor cell growth and invasiveness by transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta) requires constitutive activation of the ras/MAPK pathway. Here we have investigated how MEK activation by epidermal growth factor (EGF) influences the response of fully differentiated and growth-arrested pig thyroid epithelial cells in primary culture to TGF-beta1. The epithelial tightness was maintained after single stimulation with EGF or TGF-beta1 (both 10 ng/ml) for 48 hours. In contrast, co-stimulation abolished the transepithelial resistance and increased the paracellular flux of [(3)H]inulin within 24 hours. Reduced levels of the tight junction proteins claudin-1 and occludin accompanied the loss of barrier function. N-cadherin, expressed only in few cells of untreated or single-stimulated cultures, was at the same time increased 30-fold and co-localised with E-cadherin at adherens junctions in all cells. After 48 hours of co-stimulation, both E- and N-cadherin were downregulated and the cells attained a fibroblast-like morphology and formed multilayers. TGF-beta1 only partially inhibited EGF-induced Erk phosphorylation. The MEK inhibitor U0126 prevented residual Erk phosphorylation and abrogated the synergistic responses to TGF-beta1 and EGF. The observations indicate that concomitant growth factor-induced MEK activation is necessary for TGF-beta1 to convert normal thyroid epithelial cells to a mesenchymal phenotype.  (+info)

Aggressive venous neointimal hyperplasia in a pig model of arteriovenous graft stenosis. (6/2075)

BACKGROUND: Vascular access dysfunction is the most important cause of morbidity and hospitalization in the hemodialysis population in the United States at a cost of well over one billion dollars per annum. Venous neointimal hyperplasia characterized by stenosis and subsequent thrombosis, is the major cause of polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) dialysis graft failure. Despite the magnitude of the problem, there are currently no effective therapies for the prevention or treatment of venous neointimal hyperplasia in PTFE dialysis grafts. We believe that this is partly due to the lack of a validated large animal model of arteriovenous stenosis that could be used to test out novel interventions. METHODS: Seven-centimeter PTFE loop grafts were placed between the femoral artery and vein of domestic pigs. The grafts were removed at 2, 4, 7, 14 and 28 days after surgery and subjected to a detailed histological and immunohistochemical examination. RESULTS: Significant neointimal hyperplasia and venous stenosis developed by 28 days at the graft-vein anastomosis. There was minimal neointimal hyperplasia at the graft-artery anastomosis. Venous neointimal hyperplasia (VNH) was characterized by (a) the presence of smooth muscle cells/myofibroblasts; (b) angiogenesis within both the neointima and adventitia; and (c) the presence of an active macrophage cell layer lining the PTFE graft material. These results are very similar to the human lesion previously described by us in dialysis patients. CONCLUSIONS: We have developed and validated a pig model of venous neointimal hyperplasia that is very similar to the human lesion. We believe that this is an ideal model in which to test out novel interventions for the prevention and treatment of clinical hemodialysis vascular access dysfunction.  (+info)

Cloning, expression and characterization of a mammalian Nudix hydrolase-like enzyme that cleaves the pyrophosphate bond of UDP-glucose. (7/2075)

A distinct UDP-glucose (UDPG) pyrophosphatase (UGPPase, EC has been characterized using pig kidney ( Sus scrofa ). This enzyme hydrolyses UDPG, the precursor molecule of numerous glycosylation reactions in animals, to produce glucose 1-phosphate (G1P) and UMP. Sequence analyses of the purified enzyme revealed that, similar to the case of a nucleotide-sugar hydrolase controlling the intracellular levels of ADP-glucose linked to glycogen biosynthesis in Escherichia coli [Moreno-Bruna, Baroja-Fernandez, Munoz, Bastarrica-Berasategui, Zandueta-Criado, Rodri;guez-Lopez, Lasa, Akazawa and Pozueta-Romero (2001) Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 98, 8128-8132], UGPPase appears to be a member of the ubiquitously distributed group of nucleotide pyrophosphatases designated Nudix hydrolases. A complete cDNA of the UGPPase-encoding gene, designated UGPP, was isolated from a human thyroid cDNA library and expressed in E. coli. The resulting cells accumulated a protein that showed kinetic properties identical to those of pig UGPPase.  (+info)

Assessment of genetic diversity of Korean native pig (Sus scrofa) using AFLP markers. (8/2075)

In order to assess the genetic diversity and genetic relationships among the six commercial pig breeds including the Korean native pig, we performed an amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) analysis. Applying the three EcoRI/TagI primer combinations to 54 individual pig samples out of six breeds, a total of 186 AFLP bands were generated, 67 (36%) of which were identified as polymorphic bands. From these polymorphic bands, the three estimates (percentage of polymorphic loci, Neis heterozygosity and Shannon index) of genetic diversity, G(ST) estimates, Neis unbiased genetic distance and two indices of genetic similarity were calculated. From all the calculations of genetic diversity, the lowest genetic diversity was exhibited in the Korean native pig, and the highest in the Chinese Yanbian pig. Given the mean G(ST) value (G(ST) = 0.390) across all pigs examined, levels of apparent breed subdivision were considerable. A UPGMA tree of individuals based on Jaccards similarity index showed that the Korean native pig formed a distinct cluster from the other five pigs. In addition, the tree displayed that all the individuals except for six individuals were grouped into their breeds. Principal component analysis based on the binary data matrix of either presence or absence confirmed the distinctness of the Korean native pig from the other pigs. Our results indicate that the Korean native pig has a low level of genetic diversity and is distinct from the five pig breeds, confirming the results from previous microsatellite data. The findings also suggest that AFLP analysis may be a valuable tool for revealing genetic relationships and genetic diversity among different pig breeds.  (+info)