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The generation and maintenance of allelic polymorphism in genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) is a central issue in evolutionary genetics. Recently, the focus has changed from ex situ to in situ populations to understand the mechanisms that determine adaptive MHC polymorphism under natural selection. Birth-and-death evolution and gene(More)
Due to their key role in recognizing foreign antigens and triggering the subsequent immune response the genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) provide a potential target for parasites to attack in order to evade detection and expulsion from the host. A diminished MHC gene expression results in less activated T cells and might serve as a gateway(More)
Reference genes are used as internal standards to normalize mRNA abundance in quantitative real-time PCR and thereby allow a direct comparison between samples. So far most of these expression studies used human or classical laboratory model species whereas studies on non-model organism under in-situ conditions are quite rare. However, only studies in(More)
Background. In Europe, mistletoe extracts are widely used as a complementary cancer therapy. We assessed the safety of subcutaneous mistletoe as a conjunctive therapy in cancer patients within an anthroposophic medicine setting in Germany. Methods. A multicentre, observational study was performed within the Network Oncology. Suspected mistletoe adverse drug(More)
Pancreatic cancer has a dire prognosis and is associated with a high mortality. Palliative patients have special needs and often seek help in integrative oncological concepts (IO) that combine conventional and complementary therapies. Nevertheless there are few recommendations regarding IO in current cancer guidelines. The aims of this study were to report(More)
Understanding selection processes driving the pronounced allelic polymorphism of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) genes and its functional associations to parasite load have been the focus of many recent wildlife studies. Two main selection scenarios are currently debated which explain the susceptibility or resistance to parasite infections either(More)
Host-parasite co-evolutionary processes are the most important drivers shaping the host's immune system. During successful host immune responses to helminthic infections, usually a balanced cascade of different immune genes like MHC, T helper cell 1 and 2 (Th1 and Th2) cytokines is expressed. This information comes largely from human or laboratory studies.(More)
BACKGROUND Intratumoral (IT) injection of European mistletoe (Viscum album L) preparations might induce local tumor response through combined cytotoxic and immunomodulatory actions of the preparations. Although promising in vitro and in vivo data, along with clinical case studies suggest the need for validation of this hypothesis in prospective trials, the(More)
Quantitative real-time RT-PCR (qRT-PCR) is a sensitive technique for gene expression analysis. A critical factor for creating reliable data in relative quantification is the normalization of the expression data of genes of interest. Therefore the needed normalization factor is calculated out of the expression data of co-amplified genes that are stable(More)
Background. Traditional mistletoe therapy in cancer patients involves subcutaneous applications of Viscum album L. preparations, with doses slowly increasing based on patient responses. Intravenous infusion of high doses may improve therapeutic outcomes and is becoming more common. Little is known about the safety of this "off-label" application of(More)