In this investigation, the effects of genistein (GEN) on the expression of steroidogenic genes such as steroidogenic acute regulatory protein (StAR), side-chain cleavage enzymes (P450scc) and cytochrome P450 aromatase (CYP19) were assessed. For this study, forty young female Sprague Dawley (SD) rats at aged 2-3 months (200±20 g) and forty aged female SD rats aged 10-12 months (490±20 g) were selected. Also, based on weight they were divided into a negative control group (NC), three different GEN dose groups, which received GEN of 15, 30, 60 mg/kg, and a positive control group (PC). The experiment lasted 30 days. Concentrations of serum hormones were determined by Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Gene and protein expressions of StAR, P450scc and CYP19 were determined by Real-Time PCR and western blot techniques. It was observed that 30-60 mg/kg GEN could increase the expression of androgen generating key enzymes in the young rat ovary. GEN also significantly increased progesterone and E2 levels in the serum of aged rats and reduced the levels of LH and FSH in the serum of both young and aged rats. Compared with young rats, the effect of GEN on the ovary of aged rats was stronger and a lower dose of GEN (15 mg/kg) showed an obvious effect on these indicators. GEN influenced both estrogen level and indicators associated with estrogen and androgen transformation processes, which indicates that GEN can impair the growth and maturation of the ovary.
Function of duck (Anas platyrhynchos) major histocompatibility complex class I (Anpl-MHC I) molecules in binding peptides is through the peptide binding groove (PBG), which is thought to be influenced by the high polymorphism of α1 and α2 domains. However, little is known about the polymorphism of Anpl-MHC I peptide binding domain (PBD), especially in the domestic duck. Here, we analyzed the polymorphism of forty-eight Anpl-MHC I α1 and α2 domains from domestic duck breeds previously reported. All sequences were analyzed through multiple sequence alignment and a phylogenetic tree was constructed. The coefficient of variance of the peptide binding domains (PBDs) from WS, CV, JD, and SX duck breeds was estimated based on the Wu-Kabat variability index, followed by the location of the highly variable sites (HVSs) on reported crystal structure models. Analysis of α1 and α2 domains showed common features of classical MHC class I and high polymorphism, especially in α1 domain. The constructed phylogenetic tree showed that PBDs of domestic ducks did not segregate based on breeds and had a close phylogenetic relationship, even with wild ducks. In each breed, HVSs were mostly located in the PBG, suggesting that they might determine peptide-binding characteristics and subsequently influence peptide presentation and recognition. The combined results of sequence data and crystal structure provide novel valuable insights into the polymorphism and diversity of Anpl-MHC I PBDs that will facilitate further studies on disease resistance differences between duck breeds and the development of cytotoxic T-lymphocyte (CTL) epitope vaccines suited for preventing diseases in domestic ducks.
Senecavirus A (SVA) the only member of the Senecavirus genus within the Picornaviridae family, is an emerging pathogen causing swine idiopathic vesicular disease and epidemic transient neonatal losses. Here, SVA strain (CH-HNKZ-2017) was isolated from a swine farm exhibiting vesicular disease in Henan Province of Central China. A phylogenetic analysis based on complete genome sequence indicated that CH-HNKZ-2017 was closely related to US-15-40381IA, indica- ting that a new SVA isolate had emerged in China.
The welfare and healthy growth of poultry under intensive feeding conditions are closely related to their living environment. In spring, the air quality considerably decreases due to reduced ventilation and aeration in cage systems, which influences the meat quality and health of broilers during normal growth stages. In this study, we analyzed the airborne bacterial communities in PM2.5 and PM10 in cage broiler houses at different broiler growth stages under intensive rearing conditions based on the high-throughput 16S rDNA sequencing technique. Our results revealed that PM2.5, PM10 and airborne microbes gradually increased during the broiler growth cycle in poultry houses. Some potential or opportunistic pathogens, including Acinetobacter, Pseudomonas, Enterococcus, Microbacterium, etc., were found in the broiler houses at different growth stages. Our study evaluated variations in the microbial communities in PM2.5 and PM10 and potential opportunistic pathogens during the growth cycle of broilers in poultry houses in the spring. Our findings may provide a basis for developing technologies for air quality control in caged poultry houses.
In order to predict the distribution of shrinkage porosity in steel ingot efficiently and accurately, a criterion R√L and a method to obtain its threshold value were proposed. The criterion R√L was derived based on the solidification characteristics of steel ingot and pressure gradient in the mushy zone, in which the physical properties, the thermal parameters, the structure of the mushy zone and the secondary dendrite arm spacing were all taken into consideration. The threshold value of the criterion R√L was obtained with combination of numerical simulation of ingot solidification and total solidification shrinkage rate. Prediction of the shrinkage porosity in a 5.5 ton ingot of 2Cr13 steel with criterion R√L>0.21 m･℃1/2･s -3/2 agreed well with the results of experimental sectioning. Based on this criterion, optimization of the ingot was carried out by decreasing the height-to-diameter ratio and increasing the taper, which successfully eliminated the centreline porosity and further proved the applicability of this criterion.
MDAP-2 is a new antibacterial peptide with a unique structure that was isolated from house- flies. However, its biological characteristics and antibacterial mechanisms against bacteria are still poorly understood. To study the biological characteristics, antibacterial activity, hemolytic activi- ty, cytotoxicity to mammalian cells, and the secondary structure of MDAP-2 were detected; the results showed that MDAP-2 displayed high antibacterial activity against all of the tested Gram-negative bacteria. MDAP-2 had lower hemolytic activity to rabbit red blood cells; only 3.4% hemolytic activity was observed at a concentration of 800μg/ml. MDAP-2 also had lower cytotoxicity to mammalian cells; IC50 values for HEK-293 cells, VERO cells, and IPEC-J2 cells were greater than 1000 μg/ml. The circular dichroism (CD) spectra showed that the peptide most- ly has α-helical properties and some β-fold structure in water and in membrane-like conditions. MDAP-2 is therefore a promising antibacterial agent against Gram-negative bacteria. To deter- mine the antibacterial mechanism(s) of action, fluorescent probes, flow cytometry, and transmis- sion electron microscopy (TEM) were used to study the effects of MDAP-2 on membrane perme- ability, polarization ability, and integrity of Gram-negative bacteria. The results indicated that the peptide caused membrane depolarization, increased membrane permeability, and destroyed membrane integrity. In conclusion, MDAP-2 is a broad-spectrum, lower hemolytic activity, and lower cytotoxicity antibacterial peptide, which is mainly effective on Gram-negative bacteria. It exerts its antimicrobial effects by causing bacterial cytoplasm membrane depolarization, increas- ing cell membrane permeability and disturbing the membrane integrity of Gram-negative bacte- ria. MDAP-2 may offer a new strategy to for defense against Gram-negative bacteria.
Twinned dendrites in Al-Zn alloy with high Zn content (40% wt.%) were successfully prepared by directional solidification. At different directional solidification rates (1000 and 1500 μm/s), microstructures and growth orientation variations of Al twinned dendrite and non-twinned dendrite were characterized. By using the inverted trapezoidal graphite sleeve at 1000 μm/s, Al twinned dendrite were formed to developed feather crystal structures in longitudinal section. Its primary and secondary twinned dendrite were grew along  direction. Moreover the deviation angle between  direction of Al twinned dendrite and the heat flow direction was about 27.15°. While not using the inverted trapezoidal graphite sleeve at 1000 and 1500 μm/s, Al dendrite was the non-twinned dendrite and the twinned dendrite was not appeared. The experimental results showed that the higher temperature gradient, a certain pulling rate and convection environment were the formation conditions of twinned dendrites.
Objective: This study aimed to investigate developmental changes of the thymus and intra- thymic IL-1β, IL-6 and TNF-α expression in weaned Sprague-Dawley rats induced by lipopolysac- charide. Methods: Forty healthy weaned rats aged 26 days and weighing 83±4 g were randomly and equally divided into two groups. The lipopolysaccharide group was treated daily with a single injection of lipopolysaccharide for 10 consecutive days, and the saline group was treated with an equal volume of sterilized saline. On the 1st, 4th, 7th and 10th day, histological changes and distribu- tion of IL-1β-, IL-6- and TNF-α-positive cells were detected in the thymus by hematoxylin-eosin and immunohistochemistry staining, respectively. Subsequently, the expression levels of IL-1β, IL-6 and TNF-α were evaluated in the thymus by the ELISA method. Results: Thymus weight and index were significantly smaller in lipopolysaccharide-treated rats than in saline-treated rats (p<0.05), but no substantial changes were found in the thymus microstructure after lipopolysaccharide induction. Moreover, a large number of IL-1β-, IL-6- and TNF-α-positive cells were observed with brownish-yellow color and mainly distributed in the thy- mus parenchyma, both integrated optical density and average optical density increased signifi- cantly in lipopolysaccharide-treated rats than those in saline-treated rats. Compared with the saline group, most of the thymic homogenates had higher levels of IL-1β, IL-6 and TNF-α in the lipopolysaccharide group on different days. Conclusion: These findings indicate that the thymus atrophied after lipopolysaccharide induction in weaned Sprague-Dawley rats, and excessive production of intrathymic IL-1β, IL-6 and TNF-α was probably involved in the atrophic process.
Culture gas atmosphere is one of the most important factors affecting embryo development in vitro. The main objective of this study was to compare the effects of CO concentration on the subsequent pre-implantation developmental capacity of pig embryos in vitro, including embryos obtained via parthenogenesis, in vitro fertilization (IVF), and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). Pig embryos were developed in four different CO2 concentrations in air: 3%, 5%, 10%, or 15%. The cleavage rate of pig parthenogenetic, IVF, or ICSI embryos developed in CO2 concen- trations under 5% was the highest. There were no significant differences in the oocyte cleavage rate in ICSI embryos in CO2 concentrations under 3% and 5% (p>0.05). However, as CO2 levels increased (up to 15%) the blastocyst output on day 7, from parthenogenetic, IVF, and ICSI em- bryos, decreased to 0%. These findings demonstrate that CO2 positively affects the developmen- tal capacity of pig embryos. However, high or low CO2 levels do not significantly improve the developmental capacity of pig embryos. The best results were obtained for all of the pig embryos at a 5% CO2 concentration.
Feeder cells can promote cell proliferation and help overcome the developmental arrest of early embryos by producing growth factors. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of feeder cells on the development of all single porcine parthenogenetic embryos in vitro. Firstly, we showed that the cleavage and blastocyst formation rate of all single procine parthenogenetic embryos co-cultured with feeder cells increased in contrast to those cultured without feeder cells (p<0.05). However, no statistically significant differences were observed between the blastocyst formation rate in the embryos co-cultured with 3 different kinds feeder cells namely oviduct epithelial feeder cells, granulose feeder cells and porcine fetal fibroblast feeder cells (p>0.05). Secondly, highly significant differences were observed between the cleavage and blastocyst formation rate (p<0.05) when the embryos were co-cultured with oviduct epithelial feeder cells in different volume drops ranging from 3 to 20 μL and the cleavage rate were the highest when cultured in 5 μL drops. Thirdly, the tempospacial pattern of the development of single embryos co-cultured with oviduct epithelial feeder cells was consistent with that of traditional multi-embryo culture, indicating that the co-culturing does not affect the developmental competence of the porcine parthenogenetic embryos. Finally, highly significant differences were observed between the cleavage and blastocyst formation rate with and without zona pellucida in vitro (p<0.05). In this study, a new adaption of in vitro co-culture of single porcine parthenogenetic embryos using feeder cells has been successfully established and this will facilitate further investigations to discover the mechanistic mode of developmental arrest of porcine embryos.
Sapelovirus A (SV-A) is a positive-sense single-stranded RNA virus which is associated with acute diarrhea, pneumonia and reproductive disorders. The virus capsid is composed of four proteins, and the functions of the structural proteins are unclear. In this study, we expressed SV-A structural protein VP1 and studied its antigenicity and immunogenicity. SDS-PAGE analysis revealed that the target gene was expressed at high levels at 0.6 mM concentration of IPTG for 24 h. The mouse polyclonal antibody against SV-A VP1 protein was produced and reached a high antiserum titer (1: 2,048,000). Immunized mice sera with the recombinant SV-A VP1 protein showed specific recognition of purified VP1 protein by western blot assay and could recognize native SV-A VP1 protein in PK-15 cells infected with SV-A by indirect immunofluorescence assay. The successfully purified recombinant protein was able to preserve its antigenic determinants and the generated mouse anti-SV-A VP1 antibodies could recognize native SV-A, which may have the potential to be used to detect SV-A infection in pigs.
Pseudorabies (PR) outbreaks have devastated many swine farms in several parts of China since late 2011. The outbreak-associated pseudorabies virus (PRV) variant strains exhibited some typical amino acid changes in glycoprotein E (gE), a diagnostic antigen used for discriminating between PRV-infected and vaccinated animals (DIVA). To counteract the potential impact of epitope variations on current serological diagnostics of PRV, we produced monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against gE protein of one representative PRV variant strain and developed a blocking immunoperoxidase monolayer assay (b-IPMA) for DIVA. The b-IPMA was based on the inhibition of binding between PRV-infected cells and mAb by PRV-specific antibodies present in clinical swine sera and was validated by comparison with a commercial PRV gpI Antibody Test Kit (IDEXX Laboratories, USA). The diagnostic sensitivity, diagnostic specificity and agreement were determined to be 99.25%, 98.18% and 99.02% respectively upon testing 509 serum samples. b-IPMA detected only PRV-specific antibodies and showed no cross- -reactivity with antibodies elicited by gE-deleted vaccine or other common swine pathogens. Thus, b-IPMA has the potential to be used for high-throughput screening of PRV-infected animals in veterinary clinics.