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Inflammatory caspases (caspase-1, -4, -5 and -11) are critical for innate defences. Caspase-1 is activated by ligands of various canonical inflammasomes, and caspase-4, -5 and -11 directly recognize bacterial lipopolysaccharide, both of which trigger pyroptosis. Despite the crucial role in immunity and endotoxic shock, the mechanism for pyroptosis induction(More)
Cytosolic inflammasome complexes mediated by a pattern recognition receptor (PRR) defend against pathogen infection by activating caspase 1. Pyrin, a candidate PRR, can bind to the inflammasome adaptor ASC to form a caspase 1-activating complex. Mutations in the Pyrin-encoding gene, MEFV, cause a human autoinflammatory disease known as familial(More)
Epigenetic reprogramming plays a central role in the development of cloned embryos generated by somatic cell nuclear transfer, and it is believed that aberrant reprogramming leads to the abnormal development of most cloned embryos. Recent studies show that trimethylation of H3K27 (H3K27me3) contributes to the maintenance of embryonic stem cell pluripotency(More)
Gene expression studies in intestinal epithelial and stromal cells are a common tool for investigating the mechanisms by which the homeostasis of the small intestine is regulated under normal and pathological conditions. Quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) is a sensitive and highly reproducible method of gene expression analysis, with expression levels(More)
Hepatitis D virus (HDV) is the smallest virus known to infect human. About 15 million people worldwide are infected by HDV among those 240 million infected by its helper hepatitis B virus (HBV). Viral hepatitis D is considered as one of the most severe forms of human viral hepatitis. No specific antivirals are currently available to treat HDV infection and(More)
UNLABELLED Sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP) was identified as a functional receptor for hepatitis D virus (HDV) and its helper hepatitis B virus (HBV). In cultured cell lines, HDV infection through mouse NTCP is restricted by residues 84 to 87 of the receptor. This study shows that mice with these three amino acids altered their(More)
Placental syncytiotrophoblasts formed by the fusion of cytotrophoblasts constitute the interface between maternal and fetal circulations. The syncytium, composed of a continuous layer of syncytiotrophoblasts, assumes the fetal-maternal nutrient exchange, placental barrier, and endocrine functions important for the maintenance of normal pregnancy.(More)
BACKGROUND & AIMS Identification of intestinal stem cells (ISCs) has relied heavily on the use of transgenic reporters in mice, but this approach is limited by mosaic expression patterns and difficult to directly apply to human tissues. We sought to identify reliable surface markers of ISCs and establish a robust functional assay to characterize ISCs from(More)
Fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) is an essential tool for studies requiring isolation of distinct intestinal epithelial cell populations. Inconsistent or lack of reporting of the critical parameters associated with FACS methodologies has complicated interpretation, comparison, and reproduction of important findings. To address this problem a(More)
Postimplantation uterine development involves extensive stromal cell proliferation and decidual transformation with polyploidization, which is essential for normal pregnancy establishment. However, it remains largely unknown how stromal proliferation versus decidual polyploidization is differentially regulated during decidualization. Utilizing Wnt6-mutant(More)