Microbial desulfurization of organic sulfur compounds in petroleum. (1/1894)

Sulfur removal from petroleum is important from the standpoint of the global environment because the combustion of sulfur compounds leads to the production of sulfur oxides, which are the source of acid rain. As the regulations for sulfur in fuels become more stringent, the existing chemical desulfurizations are coming inadequate for the "deeper desulfurization" to produce lower-sulfur fuels without new and innovative processes. Biodesulfurization is rising as one of the candidates. Several microorganisms were found to desulfurize dibenzothiophene (DBT), a representative of the organic sulfur compounds in petroleum, forming a sulfur-free compound, 2-hydroxybiphenyl. They are promising as biocatalysts in the microbial desulfurization of petroleum because without assimilation of the carbon content, they remove only sulfur from the heterocyclic compounds which is refractory to conventional chemical desulfurization. Both enzymological and molecular genetic studies are now in progress for the purpose of obtaining improved desulfurization activity of organisms. The genes involved in the sulfur-specific DBT desulfurization were identified and the corresponding enzymes have been investigated. From the practical point of view, it has been proved that the microbial desulfurization proceeds in the presence of high concentrations of hydrocarbons, and more complicated DBT analogs are also desulfurized by the microorganisms. This review outlines the progress in the studies of the microbial desulfurization from the basic and practical point of view.  (+info)

5-HT2B-receptor antagonist LY-272015 is antihypertensive in DOCA-salt-hypertensive rats. (2/1894)

We previously demonstrated a change in the receptors mediating 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT)-induced contraction in arteries of deoxycorticosterone acetate (DOCA)-salt-hypertensive rats. Specifically, contraction to 5-HT is mediated primarily by 5-HT2A receptors in arteries from normotensive sham rats and by both 5-HT2A and 5-HT2B receptors in arteries from hypertensive rats. We hypothesized that the 5-HT2B receptor may play a role in maintaining the high blood pressure of DOCA-salt-hypertensive rats, and herein we provide data connecting in vitro and in vivo findings. The endothelium-denuded isolated superior mesenteric artery of DOCA-salt rats displayed a marked increase in maximum contraction to the newly available 5-HT2B-receptor agonist BW-723C86 compared with that of arteries from sham rats, confirming that the 5-HT2B receptor plays a greater role in 5-HT-induced contraction in arteries from DOCA-salt rats. In chronically instrumented rats, the 5-HT2B-receptor antagonist LY-272015 (0.3, 1.0, and 3.0 mg/kg iv at 30-min intervals) was given cumulatively 1 time/wk during 4 wk of continued DOCA-salt treatment. LY-272015 did not reduce blood pressure of the sham-treated rats at any time or dose. However, LY-272015 (1.0 and 3. 0 mg/kg) significantly reduced mean blood pressure in a subgroup of week 3 (-20 mmHg) and week 4 DOCA-salt (-40 mmHg) rats that had extremely high blood pressure (mean arterial blood pressure approximately 200 mmHg). Blockade of 5-HT2B receptors by in vivo administration of LY-272015 (3.0 mg/kg) was verified by observing reduced 5-HT-induced contraction in rat stomach fundus, the tissue from which the 5-HT2B receptor was originally cloned. These data support the novel hypothesis that 5-HT2B-receptor expression is induced during the development of DOCA-salt hypertension and contributes to the maintenance of severe blood pressure elevations.  (+info)

Cleavage of the HER2 ectodomain is a pervanadate-activable process that is inhibited by the tissue inhibitor of metalloproteases-1 in breast cancer cells. (3/1894)

HER2/neu, a Mr 185,000 tyrosine kinase receptor that is overexpressed in breast cancer, undergoes proteolytic cleavage of its extracellular domain (ECD). In contrast with other membrane-bound proteins, including growth factor receptors, that are cleaved by a common machinery system, we show that HER2 cleavage is a slow process and is not activated by protein kinase C. Pervanadate, a general inhibitor of protein-tyrosine phosphatases, induces a rapid and potent shedding of HER2 ECD. The shedding of HER2 ECD is inhibited by the broad-spectrum metalloprotease inhibitors EDTA, TAPI-2, and batimastat. The tissue inhibitor of metalloproteases-1; an inhibitor of matrix metalloproteases that does not inhibit cleavage by the general protein kinase C-dependent shedding machinery, also inhibited HER2 ECD shedding, whereas tissue inhibitor of metalloproteases-2 did not. These data suggest that HER2 cleavage is a process regulated by an as-yet-unidentified distinct protease.  (+info)

Phase I study of intrapleural batimastat (BB-94), a matrix metalloproteinase inhibitor, in the treatment of malignant pleural effusions. (4/1894)

Tumor cells and associated stromal cells secrete matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), contributing to invasion, angiogenesis, and metastasis. Batimastat (BB-94) is a broad-spectrum MMP inhibitor that causes resolution of ascites and/or tumor growth delay in animal models of breast, ovarian, and colorectal cancer. We recruited 18 patients with cytologically positive malignant pleural effusions into a Phase I study of intrapleural BB-94. Three patients received single doses of BB-94 at each dose level: 15, 30, 60, 105, 135, and 300 mg/m2. Two patients were retreated with a second course at 60 and 105 mg/m2. BB-94 was detectable in plasma 1 h after intrapleural administration, and peak levels of 20-200 ng/ml occurred after 4 h to 1 week. BB-94 persisted in the plasma for up to 12 weeks, at levels exceeding the IC50s for target MMPs. Peak values were higher, and persistence in the plasma was longer after higher doses of BB-94. The treatment was well tolerated. Toxic effects included low-grade fever for 24-48 h (6 of 18 patients, 33%) and reversible asymptomatic elevation of liver enzymes (8 patients, 44%). Toxicity seemed unrelated to BB-94 dose or plasma levels. Sixteen patients evaluable for response required significantly fewer pleural aspirations in the 3 months after BB-94 compared with the 3 months before. Seven patients (44%) required no further pleural aspiration until death/last follow-up. After 1 month, patients treated with 60-300 mg/m2 BB-94 had significantly better dyspnea scores, indicating improved exercise tolerance, compared with baseline scores the day after BB-94. The maximum tolerated intrapleural dose remains to be defined, but it is clear that intrapleural BB-94 is well tolerated, with evidence of local activity.  (+info)

Limited anti-inflammatory efficacy of cyclo-oxygenase-2 inhibition in carrageenan-airpouch inflammation. (5/1894)

1. Cyclo-oxygenase-2 (COX-2) is expressed at sites of inflammation and is believed to be the major source of inflammation-associated prostaglandin synthesis. Selective inhibition of COX-2 has been suggested to produce anti-inflammatory effects with reduced toxicity in the gastrointestinal tract. We examined the extent to which suppression of COX-2 led to inhibition of various components of inflammation in the carrageenan-airpouch model in the rat. 2. Indomethacin (> or =0.3 mg kg(-1)), nimesulide (> or =3 mg kg(-1)) and the selective COX-2 inhibitor, SC-58125 (> or =0.3 mg kg(-1)), significantly suppressed the production of prostaglandin E2 at the site of inflammation. At higher doses, indomethacin (> or =1 mg kg(-1)) and nimesulide (30 mg kg(-1)), but not SC-58125 (up to 10 mg kg(-1)), significantly inhibited COX-1 activity (as measured by whole blood thromboxane synthesis). 3. All three test drugs significantly reduced the volume of exudate in the airpouch, but only at doses greater than those required for substantial (>90%) suppression of COX-2 activity. Similarly, reduction of leukocyte infiltration was only observed with the doses of indomethacin and nimesulide that caused significant suppression of COX-1 activity. 4. SC-58125 did not significantly affect leukocyte infiltration into the airpouch at any dose tested (up to 10 mg kg(-1)). A second selective COX-2 inhibitor, Dup-697, was also found to suppress exudate PGE2 levels without significant effects on leukocyte infiltration. 5. These results indicate that selective inhibition of COX-2 results in profound suppression of PGE2 synthesis in the carrageenan-airpouch, but does not affect leukocyte infiltration. Exudate volume was only reduced with the highly selective COX-2 inhibitor when a dose far above that necessary for suppression of COX-2 activity was used. Inhibition of leukocyte infiltration was observed with indomethacin and nimesulide, but only at doses that inhibited both COX-1 and COX-2.  (+info)

Effects of angiogenesis inhibitors on multistage carcinogenesis in mice. (6/1894)

Solid tumors depend on angiogenesis for their growth. In a transgenic mouse model of pancreatic islet cell carcinogenesis (RIP1-Tag2), an angiogenic switch occurs in premalignant lesions, and angiogenesis persists during progression to expansive solid tumors and invasive carcinomas. RIP1-Tag2 mice were treated so as to compare the effects of four angiogenesis inhibitors at three distinct stages of disease progression. AGM-1470, angiostatin, BB-94, and endostatin each produced distinct efficacy profiles in trials aimed at preventing the angiogenic switch in premalignant lesions, intervening in the rapid expansion of small tumors, or inducing the regression of large end-stage cancers. Thus, anti-angiogenic drugs may prove most efficacious when they are targeted to specific stages of cancer.  (+info)

Marked suppression of T cells by a benzothiophene derivative in patients with human T-lymphotropic virus type I-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis. (7/1894)

In a search for new anti-autoimmune agents that selectively suppress activation of autoreactive T cells, one such agent, 5-methyl-3-(1-methylethoxy)benzo[b]thiophene-2-carboxamide (CI-959-A), was found to be effective. This compound, which is known to suppress tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha)-induced CD54 expression, inhibited the primary proliferative response of the T cell to antigen (Ag)-presenting cells (APCs) including allogenic dendritic cells (DCs), autologous Epstein-Barr virus-infected B cells, and human T lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I)-infected T cells. Autoreactive T cells from patients with HTLV-I-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP) spontaneously proliferate in vitro, and their activation is reported to be associated with CD54 expression. The spontaneous proliferation of T cells from patients with HAM/TSP was entirely blocked by CI-959-A. However, in this study, the T-cell proliferation in 15 patients with HAM/TSP was found to depend more extensively on major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II and CD86 than on CD54 Ags. Since most important APCs for the development of HAM/TSP are DCs and HTLV-I-infected T cells, the effect of CI-959-A on DC generation and on the expression of surface molecules on activated T cells is examined. CI-959-A suppressed recombinant granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF)- and recombinant interleukin-4-dependent differentiation of DCs from monocytes and inhibited the expression of CD54 and, more extensively, MHC class II and CD86 Ags. CI-959-A showed little toxicity toward lymphoma or HTLV-I-infected T-cell lines or toward monocytes and cultured DCs. These results suggest that CI-959-A might be a potent anti-HAM/TSP agent.  (+info)

Dorzolamide effect on ocular blood flow. (8/1894)

PURPOSE: To evaluate the effect of dorzolamide on ocular blood flow in normal and glaucomatous eyes. METHODS: Twenty-six eyes with documented open-angle glaucoma of 26 patients and 13 normal control eyes of 8 age-matched subjects were included in this study. All eyes underwent color Doppler imaging for measuring peak-systolic velocity, end-diastolic velocity, and resistance index in the ophthalmic and central retinal arteries and the maximal and minimal velocities in the central retinal vein. Eyes were grouped in control and initial and advanced glaucoma categories. Measurements were made in all groups before and after application of topical dorzolamide. Intragroup comparisons between baseline and dorzolamide conditions were made using paired Student's t-test. Intergroup comparisons under baseline conditions between normal and glaucomatous eyes were made by using the one-way ANOVA test. Statistical significance was set at P < 0.05. RESULTS: The peak-systolic velocity of the central retinal artery in glaucomatous eyes and the end-diastolic velocity of the ophthalmic and central retinal arteries in all groups were significantly higher after application of dorzolamide. The minimal velocity of the central retinal vein showed significantly higher values after dorzolamide, whereas the maximal velocity remained unchanged. The peak-systolic velocity of the ophthalmic artery in all groups and the peak-systolic velocity of the central retinal artery in normal eyes also remained unchanged. The resistance index was significantly lower in the ophthalmic and central retinal arteries in all groups after dorzolamide. The intraocular pressure was significantly reduced in all groups after dorzolamide. Under baseline conditions normal control eyes and glaucomatous eyes showed differences in various measurements. Peak-systolic velocity was significantly lower in glaucomatous eyes than in normal control eyes with the exception of the ophthalmic artery in the initial glaucoma group. End-diastolic velocity was lower in glaucomatous eyes than in control eyes in both arteries. Maximal and minimal velocities of the central retinal vein were lower in glaucomatous eyes than in normal control eyes. Resistance index was higher in glaucomatous eyes than in normal control eyes in the ophthalmic artery but not in the central retinal artery. CONCLUSIONS: Most hemodynamic parameters of intraocular and periocular vessels improve after application of topical dorzolamide in both normal control and glaucomatous eyes. Dorzolamide should be regarded as a useful drug for treatment of glaucoma not only because it reduces intraocular pressure but also because it improves the ocular blood supply.  (+info)