Lead (Pb) is a major heavy metal that augments environmental pollution and is a health risk to living organisms. This study was performed to investigate the effect of lead on characteristics of planarian, Dugesia japonica. Briefly, planarians were cultivated in water containing different concentrations (0–400 mg/L) of Pb, and incubated for varying durations (1, 3, and 5 hr). After termination of the incubation time, motility and seizure-like behaviors (c-like, head-bop, snake-like, and screw-like) of the planarians were counted in fresh water. Results showed that increasing Pb concentration and time resulted in decreased motility of the planarians (p<0.05). Increasing concentrations of Pb also resulted in significant increase in the seizure-like behavioral patterns, in particular the c-like and head-bop behaviors. In order to examine eye regeneration, the head region was cut, and rest of the body was incubated in water in the absence or presence of Pb, until emergence of the eye extrusion. Formation of eye spots was initiated in amputated fragments of the control group (without Pb) on day 4 after incubation, whereas appearance of the eye spots was delayed in planarian exposed to 200 mg/L Pb. Moreover, immunohistochemistry revealed that formation of the optic nerve was delayed in planarians exposed to Pb. Thus, our studies determined that planarians exposed to high concentrations of Pb resulted in decreasing motility and induction of seizure-like behaviors, as well as delayed eye regeneration. Results of the current study therefore validate that exposure to lead has a negative effect on the lifespan of aquatic organisms and can cause disturbance of the nervous system in animals, thereby implying the possibility of threatening health.
The young shoots of Aralia elata, Chaenomeles sinensis fruit and Glycyrrhizae radix are edible and traditionally used as anti-inflammatory and antioxidant agents. The present study was performed to investigate the protective effect of an ethanol extract mixture of these three medicinal plants (ACG) against amyloid β protein (Aβ) (25– 35)-induced memory impairment in an ICR mouse model. Memory impairment was induced by intracerebroventricular microinjection of 15 nmol Aβ (25–35) and assessed using the passive avoidance test and the Morris water maze test. The step-through latency in the passive avoidance test was decreased and the latency to reach the hidden platform in the Morris water maze test was increased in mice treated with Aβ (25–35), indicating memory impairment. This memory impairment induced by Aβ (25–35) was significantly prevented by chronic treatment with ACG (10, 25, and 50 mg/kg, p.o., 8 days). In memory impaired mice brain, cholinesterase activity and concentration of thiobarbituric acid reactive substance, a lipid peroxidation marker, were increased and glutathione level was decreased. These biochemical changes in Aβ (25–35)-treated mice were reversed by chronic administration of ACG. The present results suggest that antioxidant and anti-cholinesterase activities of ACG might be responsible for the inhibition of Aβ (25– 35)-induced memory impairment and that ACG preparation may have a therapeutic role in preventing the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.
Fowl adenovirus serotype-4 (FAdV-4) infection, also known as hydropericardium-hepatitis syndrome (HHS), is one of the most prevalent diseases in the Korean poultry industry. Therefore, an effective vaccination against FAdV-4 should be developed for prevention of HHS infection. However, a standard animal model with significant pathologic characteristics has not been established for evaluation of HHS vaccine efficacy. In this study, we comparatively evaluated FAdV-4 pathogenicity from specific- pathogen-free (SPF) chickens using FAdV-4 strain (ADL091024) isolated in laying chickens in Korea according to chicken age, passage number and virus titers. In brief, FAdV-4 passaged four times in yolk sac of SPF eggs with the highest viral titers could induce the most severe clinical signs in 1-day-old chickens, similar to natural HHS outbreaks. Furthermore, the efficacy of a newly developed attenuated live FAdV-4 vaccine candidate was successfully determined using the established 1-day-old SPF chickens. There was no significant pathogenicity based on the criteria such as mortality, body weight, gross lesions, histological lesions and virus detection rates in the vaccination and non-challenge control groups. However, the challenge group without vaccination showed significant pathogenicity including hepatic necrosis, histological lesion scores in the liver and heart, virus replication and decreased body weight gain. In conclusion, the chicken challenge model established in this report was proposed for consistent and reliable evaluation of FAdV- 4 vaccine efficacy.
Aluminum (Al) is one of the most widely applied metals in various industries. Anthropogenic activities of industrial waste result in increased accumulation of Al in natural water resources and aqueous organisms, leading to increased heavy metal pollution in the environment. This will ultimately associate with health risks to all living beings including humans. The present study addresses the possible toxic effects of Al on the motility and regeneration of planarians, using Dugesia japonica as the experimental animal model. Planarians were exposed to varying concentrations of Al (50–1,200 mg/L) for 1 hr, and subsequently evaluated for their motility, seizure-like behaviors, regeneration and alterations of the cell-organelles in their body. Results of the study exhibit that increasing Al concentrations lead to decreased motility and increased seizure-like behaviors, especially the c-type and head bob behaviors in planarians (p<0.05). The regeneration ability in the tail segments was reduced by increased Al concentrations, and the eyespot and optic nerves were more clearly observed in the control groups than planarians exposed to Al. Organelle analysis revealed morphological abnormalities in the mitochondria, golgi apparatus, endoplasmic reticulum, and cilia in the head region of planarians, as compared to the control groups. Taken together, our results indicate that exposure to Al alters the behavior of planarians and delays the regeneration of amputated body parts. Therefore, we suggest that Al exposure adversely can affect the lives of aquatic organisms, and induce toxicity such as cell abnormalities in animals.
An 8-year-old, spayed female Maltese dog was presented with a one-month history of erythema, swelling and alopecia of periocular region with pruritus. The skin lesions were first detected at the age of three years, but this was the first time that symptoms had appeared in the eyes. Physical examination revealed markedly swollen and erythematous eyelids and conjunctiva including Meibomian glands. In addition, periocular alopecia and tears were identified. Slit lamp microscopy revealed erythema of conjunctiva and swelling of Meibomian glands. The Schirmer’s tear test was normal. Impression smear cytology of eyes revealed sterile neutrophils and corneal epithelial cells. There were no virus or bacterial infections in the eyes. On skin examination, generalized erythema was detected but there were no other skin lesions. A case of allergic blepharoconjunctivitis associated with canine atopic dermatitis was diagnosed based on history taking and skin examination. Treatment included cetirizine, cyclosporine, prednisolone and Forus eye drops®. The owner was instructed to wear an Elizabethan collar around his dog's neck at all times and restrict walking. And the diet was changed to hypoallergenic dog food. Medications and environmental restrictions significantly reduced erythema, edema and swelling of meibomian glands. Pruritus was also decreased. Six weeks later, the edema lesions of eyes disappeared.