The influence of two food types, Boreogadus saida (Bs) and crustaceans (Cr), on the osmolality, ion concentrations, antifreeze activity and antifreeze glycoprotein (AFGP) distribution in the gastrointestinal fluids of the Arctic gadoid Arctogadus glacialis was determined. The gastrointestinal fluids were hyperosmotic to serum but no significant differences in osmolality were found between the two food types. The food type significantly affected the antifreeze activity of the mid-gut fluids. The hysteresis freezing points, -3.27+/-0.30 degrees C and -2.44+/-0.11 degrees C for B. saida and crustaceans, respectively, were significantly lower than that of serum (-1.99+/-0.07 degrees C). Furthermore, an exceptionally large thermal hysteresis ranging from 1.47+/-0.19 degrees C to 2.04+/-0.30 degrees C was observed in the intestinal fluids of fish feeding on B. saida. Native gel electrophoresis revealed that the gastrointestinal fluids contained AFGPs in all the different size groups. However, differences in band intensities for the two food types suggest that the ingested food has an influence on the concentration of the different AFGP-sizes in these fluids. A decrease in band intensities combined with a drop in thermal hysteresis from mid-gut to hind-gut fluid suggests that absorption of AFGP or possibly degradation occur during digestion.
The water chemistry of 20 municipal water treatment plants in southern Sweden, representing various bedrock situations, and water qualities, were investigated. Four water samples, raw and treated, were collected from each plant and analyzed by predominantly ICP-OES and ICP-MS at four occasions from June to December, 2001. The concentrations of Ca, Mg, K, Na, HCO(3) and a number of micronutrients, varied considerably in treated waters from the studied plants (ranges; Ca: 9.1-53.7 mg L(-1), Mg: 1.4-10.9 mg L(-1), K: 1.1-4.8 mg L(-1), Na; 5.4-75.6 mg L(-1), HCO(3): 27-217 mg L(-1)). The elimination of Fe and Mn from raw water was efficient in all treatments investigated, giving concentrations in treated waters below the detection limits at some plants. Softening filters gave waters with Ca-concentrations comparable to the softest waters in this study. Adjustment of pH by use of chemicals like lye, soda or lime, modified the consumer water composition significantly, besides raising the pH. It was estimated that drinking water contributed to approximately 2.2-13% of the daily Ca uptake, if the gastrointestinal uptake efficiency from food and water was estimated to be around 50%. The corresponding figures for Mg was 1.0-7% and for F 0-59%. None of the studied elements showed any significant time trends in raw or treated waters during the follow-up period. The concentrations of potentially toxic metals such as Al, Pb and U were low and did not indicate risks for adverse health effects (ranges; Al: 0.5-2.3 microg L(-1), Pb: 0-0.3 microg L(-1), U: 0.2.5 microg L(-1)).
Dermatitis herpetiformis (DH) is a common extraintestinal manifestation of coeliac disease presenting with itchy papules and vesicles on the elbows, knees, and buttocks. Overt gastrointestinal symptoms are rare. Diagnosis of DH is easily confirmed by immunofluorescence biopsy showing pathognomonic granular immunoglobulin A (IgA) deposits in the papillary dermis. A valid hypothesis for the immunopathogenesis of DH is that it starts from latent or manifest coeliac disease in the gut and evolves into an immune complex deposition of high avidity IgA epidermal transglutaminase (TG3) antibodies, together with the TG3 enzyme, in the papillary dermis. The mean age at DH diagnosis has increased significantly in recent decades and presently is 40?50 years. The DH to coeliac disease prevalence ratio is 1:8 in Finland and the United Kingdom (U.K.). The annual DH incidence rate, currently 2.7 per 100,000 in Finland and 0.8 per 100,000 in the U.K., is decreasing, whereas the reverse is true for coeliac disease. The long-term prognosis of DH patients on a gluten-free diet is excellent, with the mortality rate being even lower than for the general population.
The paper presents the currently available data on the prevalence of diabetes mellitus (DM), its complications, including functional and structural changes in the gastrointestinal tract (GIT). A range of unsolved problems associated with the frequency, pattern and mechanisms of gastric functional and structural disorders in DM; the cause-and-effect relationship between DM and upper GIT pathology; and the role of Helicobacter pylori in the development of gastroduodenal mucosal changes in the presence of DM are described. The authors give the results of their own studies on 2 groups of patients with DM: (1) 463 patients treated for GIT pathology in a specialized gastroenterology unit; (2) 1500 patients were followed up by a polyclinic endocrinologist. The study has shown that the number of diabetic patients with GIT dysfunction complaints constantly increases. Ulcerative erosive lesions were detected in 36.6% of the inpatients with DM and only in 1.9 and 3.2% of the outpatients with Types 1 and 2, respectively; moreover, the patients with Type 2 DM more frequently complained of epigastralgia than those with Type 1 DM.
Bacterial pathogens must be able to both recognize suitable niches within the host for colonization and successfully compete with commensal flora for nutrients in order to establish infection. Ethanolamine (EA) is a major component of mammalian and bacterial membranes and is used by pathogens as a carbon and/or nitrogen source in the gastrointestinal tract. The deadly human pathogen enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157:H7 (EHEC) uses EA in the intestine as a nitrogen source as a competitive advantage for colonization over the microbial flora. Here we show that EA is not only important for nitrogen metabolism but that it is also used as a signaling molecule in cell-to-cell signaling to activate virulence gene expression in EHEC. EA in concentrations that cannot promote growth as a nitrogen source can activate expression of EHEC's repertoire of virulence genes. The EutR transcription factor, known to be the receptor of EA, is only partially responsible for this regulation, suggesting that yet another EA receptor exists. This important link of EA with metabolism, cell-to-cell signaling, and pathogenesis, highlights the fact that a fundamental means of communication within microbial communities relies on energy production and processing of metabolites. Here we show for the first time that bacterial pathogens not only exploit EA as a metabolite but also coopt EA as a signaling molecule to recognize the gastrointestinal environment and promote virulence expression.
In order to successfully cause disease, a pathogen must be able to sense a host environment and modulate expression of its virulence genes as well as compete with the indigenous microbiota for nutrients. Ethanolamine (EA) is present in the large intestine due to the turnover of intestinal cells. Here, we show that the human pathogen Escherichia coli O157:H7, which causes bloody diarrhea and hemolytic-uremic syndrome, regulates virulence gene expression through EA metabolism and by responding to EA as a signal. These findings provide the first information directly linking EA with bacterial pathogenesis.
Structural analysis of human and rat gastrointestinal microbial communities revealed their general similarity. The structure of microbial biocenosis in ileum parietal mucin appears to be highly sensitive to nutritional factors. Inadequate nutrition leads to destruction of microbial microassociations in parietal mucin, a calcium-deficient diet has similar effect in feces. Fiber-rich diets stimulates build-up of indigenous communities while artificial nutrients and calcium-enriched diets promote formation of mixed indigenous-transient microbial associations. Bacteria themselves prove to be weak modifiers of the observed effects.
Obesity is a major public health issue as it is causally related to several chronic disorders, including type-2 diabetes, CVD and cancer. Novel research shows that the gut microbiota is involved in obesity and metabolic disorders, revealing that obese animal and human subjects have alterations in the composition of the gut microbiota compared to their lean counterparts. Moreover, transplantation of the microbiota of either obese or lean mice influences body weight in the germ-free recipient mice, suggesting that the gut ecosystem is a relevant target for weight management. Indigenous gut microbes may regulate body weight by influencing the host's metabolic, neuroendocrine and immune functions. The intestinal microbiota, as a whole, provides additional metabolic functions and regulates the host's gene expression, improving the ability to extract and store energy from the diet and contributing to body-weight gain. Imbalances in the gut microbiota and increases in plasma lipopolysaccharide may also act as inflammatory factors related to the development of atherosclerosis, insulin resistance and body-weight gain. In contrast, specific probiotics, prebiotics and related metabolites might exert beneficial effects on lipid and glucose metabolism, the production of satiety peptides and the inflammatory tone related to obesity and associated metabolic disorders. This knowledge is contributing to our understanding of how environmental factors influence obesity and associated diseases, providing new opportunities to design improved dietary intervention strategies to manage these disorders.
Iodine-131 is a major component of the atmospheric releases following reactor accidents, and the passage of (131)I through food chains from grass to human thyroids has been extensively studied. By comparison, the fate and effects of (131)I deposition onto lakes and other aquatic systems have been less studied. In this study we: (1) reanalyze 1960s data from experimental releases of (131)I into two small lakes; (2) compare the effects of differences in lake trophic structures on the accumulation of (131)I by fish; (3) relate concentrations in fish and fish tissues to that in the water column using empirically estimated uptake (L kg(-1) d(-1)) and loss (d(-1)) parameters; and (4) show that the largest concentrations in the thyroids of trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) may occur from 8 to 32 days after initial release. Iodine-131 concentration in trout thyroids at 30-days post release may be >1000 times that in the water. Estimates of cumulative radiation dose (mGy) to thyroids computed using an anatomically-appropriate model of trout thyroid structure within the Monte Carlo N-particle modeling software predicted cumulative thyroid doses that increased approximately linearly after the first 8 days and resulted in 32-day cumulative thyroid doses that ranged from 6 mGy g(-1) to 18 mGy g(-1) per 1 Bq mL(-1) of initial (131)I in the water depending upon fish size. The majority of this dose is due to beta emissions, and the dose varies with positions in the thyroid tissue.
Using the model of different ethanol concentration gradient between gastrointestinal tract (GIT) and blood of white mice, we analyzed kinetics of the intercellular transport of original compound and its metabolites (radioactive material). We showed that with intravenous administration 14C-ethanol (5 mmol/kg), its penetration into various divisions ofGIT (stomach, thin, thick, rectum) was observed. Creating a concentration gradient of ethanol by intravenous injection of ethanol (5 mmol/kg) and peroral intake (5, 10, 20 mmol/kg) led to a reduction in its intake into GIT, which was not entirely restricted under the laws of diffusion. Possible mechanisms for this phenomenon (insufficient gradient of ethanol concentrations in the blood-GIT, intrahepatic circulation, the residual radioactivity in the capillaries) are under discussion. The conclusion was made on possible reabsorption of ethanol in the process of its absorption in GIT.
In spite of increasing naval activities and petroleum exploration in cold environments, there is currently a paucity of tools available to monitor oil contamination in boreal marine life, especially in sedentary (non-fish) species that dominate benthic communities. This research aimed to identify biotic sources of variation in biomarkers using subarctic echinoderms, and to identify suitable biomarkers of their exposure to hydrocarbons. The focal species included the sea star Asterias rubens, the brittle star Ophiopholis aculeata, the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus droebachiensis, and the sea cucumber Cucumaria frondosa, which are among the most abundant echinoderms in the North Atlantic and Arctic Oceans. The latter two species are also commercially exploited. A series of 96-h acute exposures of the water-accommodating fraction (WAF) of used lubricating oil (ULO) were performed in different seasons (i.e. distinct reproductive stages). Digestive and reproductive tissues were analyzed for baseline and response levels of glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase (EROD). GPx activity was detected in the pyloric caecum, stomach, and gonad of sea stars, the intestine and gonad of sea cucumbers, and the gonad of brittle stars and sea urchins. No seasonal variation in baseline GPx activity occurred. Upon exposure to the ULO WAF, sex-based differences were elicited in the GPx activity of sea star stomachs (lower in females than males). EROD activity was present in the pyloric caeca of sea stars, and the gonads of brittle stars and sea urchins. An interaction between season and sex on baseline EROD activity was measured in the gonads of sea urchins. Ovaries exhibited significant seasonal variation in EROD activity and had greater activity than testes during the spawning and post-spawning seasons. Seasonal variation in EROD activity also occurred in sea star pyloric caeca and brittle star gonads. Furthermore, testes of sea urchins exposed to the ULO WAF exhibited suppressed EROD activity compared to baseline levels. The nearly universal presence of GPx activity highlights its potential as a useful biomarker, while EROD activity was much more limited. Findings suggest a complex relationship between temporal and biotic factors on both the baseline and response levels of enzymatic activity, emphasizing the need to consider sex and sampling season in studies of biomarkers of hydrocarbon exposure in boreal indicator species that display annual reproductive cycles.