- The Effects of Isopropyl Methylphosphono-Fluoridate (IMPF) Poisoning on Tumor Growth and Angiogenesis in BALB/C Mice. [Journal Article]
- ATAnn Transplant 2018 Feb 09; 23:105-111
- CONCLUSIONS: This study showed that IMPF had a significant effect on the regulation of lymphocyte-induced angiogenesis and the modulation of angiogenic and pro-inflammatory cytokines secretion. The observed effects suggest involvement of neuronal and/or non-neuronal cholinergic signaling pathway.
- Fatal sarin poisoning in Syria 2013: forensic verification within an international laboratory network. [Journal Article]
- FTForensic Toxicol 2018; 36(1):61-71
- During the United Nations fact-finding mission to investigate the alleged use of chemical warfare agents in the Syrian Arab Republic in 2013, numerous tissues from a deceased female victim, who had d...
During the United Nations fact-finding mission to investigate the alleged use of chemical warfare agents in the Syrian Arab Republic in 2013, numerous tissues from a deceased female victim, who had displayed symptoms of cholinergic crisis, were collected. The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) authorized two specialized laboratories in the Netherlands and Germany for forensic analysis of these samples. Diverse modern mass spectrometry (MS)-based procedures in combination with either liquid chromatography (LC) or gas chromatography (GC) separation were applied. A variety of biotransformation products of the nerve agent sarin was detected, including the hydrolysis product O-isopropyl methylphosphonic acid (IMPA) as well as covalent protein adducts with e.g., albumin and human butyrylcholinesterase (hBChE). IMPA was extracted after sample acidification by solid-phase extraction and directly analyzed by LC-tandem-MS with negative electrospray ionization (ESI). Protein adducts were found, either by fluoride-induced reactivation applying GC-MS techniques or by LC-MS-based detection after positive ESI for proteolyzed proteins yielding phosphonylated tyrosine residues or a specific phosphonylated hBChE-derived nonapeptide. These experimental results provided unambiguous evidence for a systemic intoxication and were the first proving the use of sarin in the ongoing bellicose conflict. This scenario underlines the requirement for qualified and specialized analytical laboratories to face repeated violation of the Chemical Weapons Convention.
- Counteracting desensitization of human α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors with bispyridinium compounds as an approach against organophosphorus poisoning. [Journal Article]
- TLToxicol Lett 2017 Dec 14
- Irreversible inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) resulting in accumulation of acetylcholine and overstimulation of muscarinic and nicotinic receptors accounts for the acute toxicity of organoph...
Irreversible inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) resulting in accumulation of acetylcholine and overstimulation of muscarinic and nicotinic receptors accounts for the acute toxicity of organophosphorus compounds (OP). Accordingly, the mainstay pharmacotherapy against poisoning by OP comprises the competitive muscarinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist atropine to treat muscarinic effects and, in addition, oximes to reactivate inhibited AChE. A therapeutic gap still remains in the treatment of desensitized nicotinic acetylcholine receptors following OP exposure. Hereby, nicotinic effects result in paralysis of the central and peripheral respiratory system if untreated. Thus, these receptors pose an essential target for therapeutic indication to address these life-threatening nicotinic symptoms of the cholinergic crisis. Identification of ligands regulating dynamic transitions between functional states by binding to modulatory sites appears to be a promising strategy for therapeutic intervention. In this patch clamp study, the ability of differently substituted bispyridinium non-oximes to "resensitize" i.e. to recover the activity of desensitized human homomeric α7-type nAChRs stably transfected in CHO cells was investigated and compared to the already described α7-specific positive allosteric modulator PNU-120596. The structures of these bispyridinium analogues were based on the lead structure of the tert-butyl-substituted bispyridinium propane MB327, which has been shown to have a positive therapeutic effect due to a non-competitive antagonistic action at muscle-type nAChRs in vivo and has been found to have a positive allosteric activity at neuronal receptors in vitro. Prior to test compounds, desensitization of hα7-nAChRs was verified by applying an excess of nicotine revealing activation at low, and desensitization at high concentrations. Thereby, desensitization could be reduced by modulation with PNU-120596. Desensitization was further verified by dose-response profiles of agonists, carbamoylcholine and epibatidine in the absence and presence of PNU-120596. Although less pronounced than PNU-120596 and the lead structure MB327, bispyridinium compounds, particularly those substituted at position 3 and 4, resensitized the nicotine desensitized hα7-nAChRs in a concentration-dependent manner and prolonged the mean channel open time. In summary, identification of more potent compounds able to restore nAChR function in OP intoxication is needed for development of a putative efficient antidote.
- Organophosphorus compounds at 80: some old and new issues. [Journal Article]
- TSToxicol Sci 2017 Dec 07
- One of the major classes of pesticides is that of the organophosphates (OPs). Initial developments date back almost two centuries but it was only in the mid-1940s that OPs reached a prominent status ...
One of the major classes of pesticides is that of the organophosphates (OPs). Initial developments date back almost two centuries but it was only in the mid-1940s that OPs reached a prominent status as insecticides, a status that, albeit declining, is still ongoing. OPs are highly toxic to non-target species including humans, the primary effects being an acute cholinergic toxicity (responsible for thousands of poisoning each year) and a delayed polyneuropathy. Several issues of current debate and investigation on the toxicology of OPs are discussed in this brief review. These include 1) possible additional targets of OPs, 2) OPs as developmental neurotoxicants, 3) OPs and neurodegenerative diseases, 4) OPs and the "aerotoxic syndrome", 5) OPs and the microbiome, and 6) OPs and cancer. Some of these issues have been debated and studied for some time, while others are newer, suggesting that the study of the toxicology of OPs will remain an important scientific and public health issue for years to come.
- Can we predict intermediate syndrome? A review. [Review]
- NNeurotoxicology 2017 Dec 05
- CONCLUSIONS: The intermediate syndrome which follows organophosphate poisoning still remains a significant problem with its high morbidity. Clinical and biochemical markers show modest results in predicting IMS. Neurophysiological markers such as single fibre EMG should be studied further as they measure activity of affected nicotinic receptors directly.
- Respiratory Failure Following Organophosphate Poisoning: A Literature Review. [Review]
- CCureus 2017 Sep 03; 9(9):e1651
- Organophosphates (OPs) account for a large portion of suicides globally. OP manifests as cholinergic crises, which underlie respiratory failure. There are many pathways by which respiration is inhibi...
Organophosphates (OPs) account for a large portion of suicides globally. OP manifests as cholinergic crises, which underlie respiratory failure. There are many pathways by which respiration is inhibited secondary to organophosphate poisoning. These include central as well as peripheral mechanisms, with central mechanisms predominating. We conducted a literature review in June 2017. PubMed, Embase, and Google Scholar were searched for studies that reported acute organophosphate poisoning in humans. In our review, data were collected from studies published during the years 2001 to 2016. The data consisted of 1,996 patients with organophosphate poisoning, of which 491 (24.6%) required ventilatory support secondary to respiratory failure. Treatment offered to OP poisoning patients should focus on its pathophysiology to benefit from the future outcomes. Recent advances direct the need for a central nervous system (CNS) protective strategy for future prevention and treatment of events associated with cholinergic crises.
- Post-exposure treatment with the oxime RS194B rapidly reactivates and reverses advanced symptoms of lethal inhaled paraoxon in macaques. [Journal Article]
- TLToxicol Lett 2017 Nov 09
- Fatalities from organophosphate (OP) insecticide result from both occupational and deliberate exposure; significantly impacting human health. Like nerve agents, insecticides are neurotoxins which tar...
Fatalities from organophosphate (OP) insecticide result from both occupational and deliberate exposure; significantly impacting human health. Like nerve agents, insecticides are neurotoxins which target and inhibit acetylcholinesterases (AChE) in central and peripheral synapses in the cholinergic nervous system. Post-exposure therapeutic countermeasures generally include administration of atropine with a pyridinium aldoxime e.g. pralidoxime, to reactivate the OP-inhibited AChE. However, commonly used oximes inefficiently cross the bloodbrain barrier and are rapidly cleared and their benefit is debated. Recent findings have demonstrated the ability of a novel zwitterionic, centrally acting, brain penetrating oxime (RS194B) to reverse severe symptoms and rapidly reactivate sarin-inhibited AChE in macaques, but it has not been tested following OP pesticide poisoning. In the present study, the symptoms following a lethal dose of inhaled paraoxon (100ug/kg), were shown to mimic those in insecticide poisoned individuals and were also rapidly reversed in macaques by post-exposure IM administration of 80mg/kg of RS194B. This occurred with a concomitant reactivation of AChE to 40-100% in<1hr and BChE (40% in 8h). These findings will be used to develop a macaque model with RS194B as a post-exposure treatment for insecticide poisoning and generate efficacy data for approval under the FDA Animal rule.
- CK2 Oppositely Modulates l-DOPA-Induced Dyskinesia via Striatal Projection Neurons Expressing D1 or D2 Receptors. [Journal Article]
- JNJ Neurosci 2017 Dec 06; 37(49):11930-11946
- We have previously shown that casein kinase 2 (CK2) negatively regulates dopamine D1 and adenosine A2A receptor signaling in the striatum. Ablation of CK2 in D1 receptor-positive striatal neurons cau...
We have previously shown that casein kinase 2 (CK2) negatively regulates dopamine D1 and adenosine A2A receptor signaling in the striatum. Ablation of CK2 in D1 receptor-positive striatal neurons caused enhanced locomotion and exploration at baseline, whereas CK2 ablation in D2 receptor-positive neurons caused increased locomotion after treatment with A2A antagonist, caffeine. Because both, D1 and A2A receptors, play major roles in the cellular responses to l-DOPA in the striatum, these findings prompted us to examine the impact of CK2 ablation on the effects of l-DOPA treatment in the unilateral 6-OHDA lesioned mouse model of Parkinson's disease. We report here that knock-out of CK2 in striatonigral neurons reduces the severity of l-DOPA-induced dyskinesia (LID), a finding that correlates with lowered pERK but unchanged pPKA substrate levels in D1 medium spiny neurons as well as in cholinergic interneurons. In contrast, lack of CK2 in striatopallidal neurons enhances LID and ERK phosphorylation. Coadministration of caffeine with a low dose of l-DOPA reduces dyskinesia in animals with striatopallidal knock-out to wild-type levels, suggesting a dependence on adenosine receptor activity. We also detect reduced Golf levels in the striatonigral but not in the striatopallidal knock-out in response to l-DOPA treatment.Our work shows, in a rodent model of PD, that treatment-induced dyskinesia and striatal ERK activation are bidirectionally modulated by ablating CK2 in D1- or D2-positive projection neurons, in male and female mice. The results reveal that CK2 regulates signaling events critical to LID in each of the two main populations of striatal neurons.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT To date, l-DOPA is the most effective treatment for PD. Over time, however, its efficacy decreases, and side effects including l-DOPA-induced dyskinesia (LID) increase, affecting up to 78% of patients within 10 years of therapy (Hauser et al., 2007). It is understood that supersensitivity of the striatonigral pathway underlies LID, however, D2 agonists were also shown to induce LID (Bezard et al., 2001; Delfino et al., 2004). Our work implicates a novel player in the expression of LID, the kinase CK2: knock-out of CK2 in striatonigral and striatopallidal neurons has opposing effects on LID. The bidirectional modulation of dyskinesia reveals a central role for CK2 in striatal physiology and indicates that both pathways contribute to LID.
- In vitro and ex vivo screening of candidate therapeutics to restore neurotransmission in nerve terminals intoxicated by botulinum neurotoxin serotype A1. [Journal Article]
- TToxicon 2017 Oct 17
- Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are exceedingly potent neurological poisons that block cholinergic release in the peripheral nervous system and cause death by asphyxiation. While post-exposure prophyla...
Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are exceedingly potent neurological poisons that block cholinergic release in the peripheral nervous system and cause death by asphyxiation. While post-exposure prophylaxis can effectively eliminate toxin in the bloodstream, there are no clinically effective treatments to prevent or reverse disease once BoNT has entered the neuron. To address the need for post-symptomatic countermeasures, we designed and developed an in vitro assay based on whole-cell, patch-clamp electrophysiological monitoring of miniature excitatory post-synaptic currents in synaptically active murine embryonic stem cell-derived neurons. This synaptic function-based assay was used to assess the efficacy of rationally selected drugs to restore neurotransmission in neurons comprehensively intoxicated by BoNT/A. Based on clinical reports suggesting that elevated Ca2+signaling promotes symptomatic relief from botulism, we identified seven candidate drugs that modulate presynaptic Ca2+signaling and assessed their ability to reverse BoNT/A-induced synaptic blockade. The most effective drugs from the screen were found to phasically agonize voltage-gated calcium channel (VGCC) activity. Lead candidates were then applied to ex vivo studies in BoNT/A-paralyzing mouse phrenic nerve-hemidiaphragm (PND) preparations. Treatment of PNDs with VGCC agonists after paralytic onset transiently potentiated nerve-elicited muscle contraction and delayed progression to neuromuscular failure. Collectively, this study suggests that Ca2+-modulating drugs represent a novel symptomatic treatment for neuromuscular paralysis following BoNT/A poisoning.
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- In vitro pharmacological characterization of the bispyridinium non-oxime compound MB327 and its 2- and 3-regioisomers. [Journal Article]
- TLToxicol Lett 2017 Oct 10
- The primary toxic mechanism of organophosphorus compounds, i.e. nerve agents or pesticides, is based on the irreversible inhibition of acetylcholinesterase. In consequence of the impaired hydrolysis,...
The primary toxic mechanism of organophosphorus compounds, i.e. nerve agents or pesticides, is based on the irreversible inhibition of acetylcholinesterase. In consequence of the impaired hydrolysis, the neurotransmitter acetylcholine accumulates in cholinergic synapses and disturbs functional activity of nicotinic and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors by overstimulation and subsequent desensitization. The resulting cholinergic syndrome will become acute life-threatening, if not treated adequately. The current standard treatment, consisting of administration of a competitive mAChR antagonist (e.g. atropine) and an oxime (e.g. obidoxime, pralidoxime), is not sufficient in the case of soman or tabun intoxications. Consequently, alternative therapeutic options are necessary. An innovative approach comprises the use of compounds selectively targeting nAChRs, especially positive allosteric modulators, which increase the population of the conducting receptor state. MB327 (1,1'-(propane-1,3-diyl)bis(4-tert-butylpyridinium) di(iodide)) is able to restore soman-blocked muscle-force in preparations of various species including human and was recently identified as "resensitizer". In contrast to the well-studied MB327, the pharmacological efficacy of the 2- and 3-tert-butylpyridinium propane regioisomers is unknown. As a first step, MB327 and its 3-regioisomer (PTM0001) and 2-regioisomer (PTM0002) were pharmacologically characterized using [3H]epibatidine binding assays, functional studies by solid supported membranes based electrophysiology, and in vitro muscle-force investigations of soman-poisoned rat hemidiaphragm preparations by indirect field stimulation technique. The results obtained from targets of different complexity (receptor, muscle tissue) showed that the pharmacological profiles of the 2- and 3-regioisomers were relatively similar to those of MB327. Furthermore, high concentrations showed inhibitory effects, which might critically influence the application as an antidote. Thus, more effective drugs have to be developed. Nevertheless, the combination of the methods presented is an effective tool for clarifying structure-activity relationships.