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This study was aimed to investigate whether betatrophin shows glucose intolerance or not. To access the plasma betatrophin levels after basal and glucose load, groups were classified as normal glucose tolerance (NGT), impaired fasting glucose (IFG), impaired glucose tolerance (IGT), and diabetic glucose tolerance (DGT) according to WHO 2012 criteria. An oral glucose tolerance test was performed on age-matched subjects (n = 220) with a body mass index (BMI) < 27 kg/m2. Subjects were categorized as normoglycemic (n = 55), IFG (n = 50), IGT (n = 60), and DM (n = 55) according to the WHO criteria. Baseline betatrophin levels in DGT are significantly higher than in NGT (p < 0.005), IFG (p < 0.004), and IGT (p < 0.001). Male subjects have significantly higher betatrophin levels than female subjects (p < 0.01). In DGT, betatrophin of male subjects was found to be significantly higher than the betatrophin of male subjects in NGT (p < 0.04), IFG (p < 0.01), and IGT (p < 0.01). Significant relationship between betatrophin and both ages and HbA1c in all groups were observed. When ages were accepted as an independent factor, significant correlation between betatrophin and ages were found. Betatrophin is increased and associated with age and HbA1c in DGT. Males had higher betatrophin levels compared with females in DGT group. As no obvious betatrophin deficiency to substitute in IFG and IGT individuals were observed, betatrophin levels appeared to be related to the pathogenesis of the diabetic stages rather than prediabetic stages.


This study was designed to evaluate the effect of Ulva lactuca hydroethanolic extract on rheumatoid arthritis in male Wistar rats. Rheumatoid arthritis was induced in rats by subcutaneous injection of 200 µl Freund’s complete adjuvant into a footpad of the right hind leg of male rats at two consecutive days. Arthritic rats were orally treated with Ulva lactuca hydroethanolic extract at dose level of 100 mg/kg b.wt /day for 1, 2 and 3 weeks and were compared with corresponding arthritic control at the same periods. The increased right hind paw circumference at tarsal pad, deleteriously affected ankle joint histological architecture, articular inflammatory cell infiltration and focal necrosis in arthritic rats were counteracted by hydroethanolic extract treatment at the three tested periods. Elevated leukocytes count in arthritic rats connected with changes of spleen and thymus histological architecture, extramedullary megakaryocytes, lymphoblasts activation and mitotic figures were significantly improved by Ulva lactuca hydroethanolic extract treatment at the three tested peroids. The elevated rheumatoid factor (RF), prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), interleukin-17 (IL-17) and interleukin-1beta (IL-1β) levels and the lowered interleukin-4 (IL-4) level in arthritic rats were markedly ameliorated as a result of Ulva lactuca administration. The lowered glutathione level and glutathione peroxidase, glutathione reductase and superoxide dismutase activities as well as the elevated lipid peroxides level in serum of arthritic rats were potentially alleviated as a result of Ulva lactuca treatment. In conclusion, Ulva lactuca could have anti-arthritic efficacies which may be mediated via its anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant potentials.

Neurotoxic effects of silver nanoparticles and the protective role of rutin

Posted by Mona M. A, Mohamed M.A. H. on 2017-06-05 23:10:42


The toxicological studies on silver nanoparticles (Ag-NPs) have become a hot topic over the past few decades due to their unique properties on the nanoscale and widespread in many commercial products that launched into the market recently. This study was undertaken to shed light on Ag-NPs toxicity on neurotransmitters with special emphasis on the impact of concurrent administration of rutin with Ag-NPs in the experimental rats. The oral administration of Ag-NPs in rats induced brain oxidative stress, significant alterations in neurotransmitters and amino acids. Furthermore, transcriptional levels of glutamatergic N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors, monoamino oxidases (MAO-A, MAO-B) and metallothionein-III (MT-III) showed a significant elevation in Ag-NPs intoxicated rats. Moreover, histological examinations revealed astrogliosis and demyelination of neurons concomitant with neuronal degeneration and vacuolation. Strikingly, oral administration of rutin counterbalanced the toxic effects triggered by Ag-NPs. Taken together, our findings suggested that oral administration of Ag-NPs induced neurotoxicity in rats and rutin mitigates these effects.

Neuroprotective effect of nebivolol against cisplatin-associated depressive-like behavior in rats

Posted by N F. Abdelkader, M A. Saad, R M. Abdelsalam. on 2017-03-26 19:13:11


One-third of cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy treatment often display symptoms of depression leading to poor adherence and decreased quality of life. Thus, this study aimed to investigate the possible protective effect of nebivolol against cisplatin-associated depressive symptoms in adult male rats. Nebivolol is a highly cardioselective β-adrenergic receptor blocker that possesses endothelium-dependent vasodilator properties and antioxidant capacities. Animals were allocated into four groups. Group one was given aqueous solution of carboxymethyl cellulose and served as control, group two was given nebivolol (10 mg/kg p.o., daily), group three was given cisplatin (2 mg/kg i.p. once per week) for 10 consecutive weeks and group four was treated with cisplatin concomitantly with nebivolol as per above schedule. Cisplatin-treated rats showed an increase in both depressive-like behaviors in open-field and forced swimming tests. In addition, histopathological examination revealed cortical encephalomalacia along with hippocampal neuronal degeneration and kidney dysfunction. In parallel, cisplatin administration prominently reduced GABA and elevated glutamate levels in the cortical and hippocampal tissues. Furthermore, it resulted in a significant decline in cortical and hippocampal brain-derived neurotrophic factor and nitric oxide contents concomitantly with a marked decrease in endothelial- and an increase in inducible-nitric oxide synthase genes expression. On the other hand, treatment with nebivolol effectively mitigated the aforementioned cisplatin-associated behavioral, biochemical, and histopathological alterations without changing its antitumor activity as evidenced by sulforhodamine B cell survival assay. Taken together, our results suggest that nebivolol may offer a promising approach for alleviating depressive symptoms associated with the use of cisplatin.

Zinc oxide nanoparticles as a novel anticancer approach; in vitro and in vivo evidence

Posted by HFH Hassan, AM Mansour, AMH Abo-Youssef, et al. on 2017-03-26 19:04:48


Currently, the outcomes of conventional chemotherapeutic approaches are unsatisfactory. Clinical application of nanoparticles seems promising. We aim to evaluate the possible antitumor activity of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnONPs) as a chemotherapeutic approach in in vitro and in vivo experimental models. An in vitro study was performed on three different cell lines, namely human hepatocellular carcinoma (HEPG2), human prostate cancer (PC3), and none-small cell lung cancer (A549) cell lines. An in vivo study using diethylnitrosamine (DENA)-induced HCC in adult male Wistar rats was conducted to investigate the potential antitumor activity of ZnONPs in HCC and the possible underlying mechanisms. Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) was induced by oral administration of DENA given in drinking water (100 mg/L) for 8 weeks. Rats were allocated into four groups, namely a control group, an HCC control group receiving DENA alone, a ZnONPs (10 μg/kg per week, intravenous (i.v.) for 1 month) control group, and a ZnONPs treatment group (receiving ZnONPs + DENA). ZnONPs significantly reduced the elevated serum levels of HCC-related tumor markers alphafetoprotein and alpha-l-fucosidase and the apoptotic marker caspase-3 compared with the untreated HCC rats. In addition, treatment with ZnONPs significantly decreased the elevated levels of hepatocyte integrity and oxidative stress markers as compared with the untreated HCC control group. Furthermore, the histopathological study revealed anaplasia and fibrous degenerations which were significantly corrected by ZnONPs treatment. In conclusion, administration of ZnONPs exhibited a promising preclinical anticancer efficacy in HCC and could be considered as a novel strategy for the treatment HCC in clinical practices.


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