• Ascorbyl palmitate/DSPE-PEG nanocarriers for oral iron delivery: preparation, characterisation and in vitro evaluation

      Zariwala, Mohammed Gulrez; Farnaud, Sébastien; Merchant, Zahra; Somavarapu, Satyanarayana; Renshaw, Derek; University of Westminster; University of Bedfordshire; UCL School of Pharmacy (Elsevier, 2014-03-01)
      The objective of this study was to encapsulate iron in nanocarriers formulated with ascorbyl palmitate and 1,2-distearoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoethanolamine polyethylene glycol (DSPE-PEG) for oral delivery. Blank and iron (Fe) loaded nanocarriers were prepared by a modified thin film method using ascorbyl palmitate and DSPE-PEG. Surface charge of the nanocarriers was modified by the inclusion of chitosan (CHI) during the formulation process. Blank and iron loaded ascorbyl palmitate/DSPE nanocarriers were visualised by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and physiochemical characterisations of the nanocarriers carried out to determine the mean particle size and zeta potential. Inclusion of chitosan imparted a net positive charge on the nanocarrier surface and also led to an increase in mean particle size. Iron entrapment in ascorbyl palmitate-Fe and ascorbyl palmitate-CHI-Fe nanocarriers was 67% and 76% respectively, suggesting a beneficial effect of chitosan on nanocarrier Fe entrapment. Iron absorption was estimated by measuring Caco-2 cell ferritin formation using ferrous sulphate as a reference standard. Iron absorption from ascorbyl palmitate-Fe (592.17±21.12 ng/mg cell protein) and ascorbyl palmitate-CHI-Fe (800.12±47.6 ng/mg, cell protein) nanocarriers was 1.35-fold and 1.5-fold higher than that from free ferrous sulphate, respectively (505.74±23.73 ng/mg cell protein) (n=6, p<0.05). This study demonstrates for the first time preparation and characterisation of iron loaded ascorbyl palmitate/DSPE PEG nanocarriers, and that engineering of the nanocarriers with chitosan leads to a significant augmentation of iron absorption.
    • Characterisation of hepcidin response to holotransferrin treatment in CHO TRVb-1 cells

      Mehta, Kosha; Greenwell, Pamela; Renshaw, Derek; Busbridge, Mark; Garcia, Mitla; Farnaud, Sébastien; Patel, Vinood B.; University of Westminster; Coventry University; Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust; et al. (Elsevier, 2015-08-28)
      Iron overload coupled with low hepcidin levels are characteristics of hereditary haemochromatosis. To understand the role of transferrin receptor (TFR) and intracellular iron in hepcidin secretion, Chinese hamster ovary transferrin receptor variant (CHO TRVb-1) cells were used that express iron-response-element-depleted human TFRC mRNA (TFRC∆IRE). Results showed that CHO TRVb-1 cells expressed higher basal levels of cell-surface TFR1 than HepG2 cells (2.2-fold; p < 0.01) and following 5 g/L holotransferrin treatment maintained constitutive over-expression at 24h and 48 h, contrasting the HepG2 cells where the receptor levels significantly declined. Despite this, the intracellular iron content was neither higher than HepG2 cells nor increased over time under basal or holotransferrin-treated conditions. Interestingly, hepcidin secretion in CHO TRVb-1 cells exceeded basal levels at all time-points (p < 0.02) and matched levels in HepG2 cells following treatment. While TFRC mRNA expression showed expected elevation (2h, p < 0.03; 4h; p < 0.05), slc40a1 mRNA expression was also elevated (2 h, p < 0.05; 4 h, p < 0.03), unlike the HepG2 cells. In conclusion, the CHO TRVb-1 cells prevented cellular iron-overload by elevating slc40a1 expression, thereby highlighting its significance in the absence of iron-regulated TFRC mRNA. Furthermore, hepcidin response to holotransferrin treatment was similar to HepG2 cells and resembled the human physiological response.
    • Characterization of hepcidin response to holotransferrin in novel recombinant TfR1 HepG2 cells

      Mehta, Kosha; Busbridge, Mark; Renshaw, Derek; Evans, Robert W.; Farnaud, Sébastien; Patel, Vinood B.; University of Westminster; Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust; Coventry University; Brunel University; et al. (Elsevier, 2016-06-30)
      Hepcidin is the key regulator of systemic iron homeostasis. The iron-sensing mechanisms and the role of intracellular iron in modulating hepatic hepcidin secretion are unclear. Therefore, we created a novel cell line, recombinant-TfR1 HepG2, expressing iron-response-element-independent TFRC mRNA to promote cellular iron-overload and examined the effect of excess holotransferrin (5g/L) on cell-surface TfR1, iron content, hepcidin secretion and mRNA expressions of TFRC, HAMP, SLC40A1, HFE and TFR2. Results showed that the recombinant cells exceeded levels of cell-surface TfR1 in wild-type cells under basal (2.8-fold; p<0.03) and holotransferrin-supplemented conditions for 24h and 48h (4.4- and 7.5-fold, respectively; p<0.01). Also, these cells showed higher intracellular iron content than wild-type cells under basal (3-fold; p<0.03) and holotransferrin-supplemented conditions (6.6-fold at 4h; p<0.01). However, hepcidin secretion was not higher than wild-type cells. Moreover, holotransferrin treatment to recombinant cells did not elevate HAMP responses compared to untreated or wild-type cells. In conclusion, increased intracellular iron content in recombinant cells did not increase hepcidin responses compared to wild-type cells, resembling hemochromatosis. Furthermore, TFR2 expression altered within 4h of treatment, while HFE expression altered later at 24h and 48h, suggesting that TFR2 may function prior to HFE in HAMP regulation.
    • Comparison study of oral iron preparations using a human intestinal model

      Zariwala, Mohammed Gulrez; Somavarapu, Satyanarayana; Farnaud, Sébastien; Renshaw, Derek; University of Westminster; University College London; University of Bedfordshire (Österreichischer Apothekerverlag, 2013-06-21)
      Iron deficiency and related iron deficiency anaemia (IDA) are the most prevalent nutritional disorders worldwide. The standard treatment involves supplementation with solid or liquid iron supplement preparations, usually based on a ferrous salt such as ferrous sulphate, ferrous fumarate, or ferrous gluconate. In the present study, we compared iron uptake and absorption from various solid and liquid iron supplement preparations currently available in the United Kingdom using the well-characterised human epithelial adenocarcinoma cell line Caco-2. Intracellular ferritin protein formation by the Caco-2 cell was considered an indicator of cellular iron uptake and absorption. We investigated the effects of formulation ingredients at a defined pH on iron uptake and absorption, and designed a novel two-stage dissolution-absorption protocol that mimicked physiological conditions. Our experiments revealed wide variations in the rate of dissolution between the various solid iron preparations. Conventional-release ferrous iron tablets dissolved rapidly (48 ± 4 mins to 64 ± 4 mins), whereas modified-released tablets and capsules took significantly longer to undergo complete dissolution (274 ± 8 to 256 ± 8 mins). Among the solid iron preparations, ferrous sulphate conventional-release tablets demonstrated the highest iron absorption, whereas modified-release ferrous preparations demonstrated uniformly low iron absorption, as compared to the control (P < 0.05). Taken together, our results demonstrate that there are wide-ranging variations in dissolution times and iron uptake from oral iron preparations, with the physical characteristics of the preparation as well as the form of iron playing a key role.
    • Inhibition on JNK mimics silencing of Wnt-11 mediated cellular response in androgen-independent prostate cancer cells

      Arisan, Elif Damla; Rencuzogullari, Ozge; Keskin, Buse; Grant, Guy H.; Uysal-Onganer, Pinar; Gebze Technical University; Istanbul Kultur University; University of Bedfordshire; University of Westminster (MDPI, 2020-06-27)
      Prostate cancer (PCa) is one of the most common cancers among men, and one of the leading causes of cancer death for men. The c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) pathway is required for several cellular functions, such as survival, proliferation, differentiation, and migration. Wnt-11, a member of the Wnt family, has been identified for its upregulation in PCa; however, downstream signalling of Wnt-11 remains to be fully characterized. In this study, we investigated the role of the JNK pathway as a potential downstream factor for Wnt-11 signalling. For this purpose, LNCaP, DU145, and PC-3 PCa cells and normal epithelial PNT1A cells were treated with a specific JNK kinase inhibitor: JNKVIII. Our results showed that JNK inhibition decreased mitochondrial membrane potential and promoted cell death in a cell type-dependent manner. We found that JNK inhibition led to an increase in autophagy and prevented epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in independently growing androgen cells. JNK inhibition and the silencing of Wnt-11 showed similar responses in DU145 and PC-3 cells and decreased metastasis-related biomarkers, cell migration, and invasion. Overall, our results suggest that JNK signalling plays a significant role in the pathophysiology of PCa by mediating Wnt-11 induced signals. Our data highlights that both the JNK pathway and Wnt-11 could be a useful therapeutic target for the combinatory application of current PCa.
    • MicroRNAs for virus pathogenicity and host responses, identified in SARS-CoV-2 genomes, may play roles in viral-host co-evolution in putative zoonotic host species

      Lange, Sigrun; Arisan, Elif Damla; Grant, Guy H.; Uysal-Onganer, Pinar; University of Westminster; Gebze Technical University; University of Bedfordshire (MDPI, 2021-01-16)
      Our recent study identified seven key microRNAs (miR-8066, 5197, 3611, 3934-3p, 1307-3p, 3691-3p, 1468-5p) similar between SARS-CoV-2 and the human genome, pointing at miR-related mechanisms in viral entry and the regulatory effects on host immunity. To identify the putative roles of these miRs in zoonosis, we assessed their conservation, compared with humans, in some key wild and domestic animal carriers of zoonotic viruses, including bat, pangolin, pig, cow, rat, and chicken. Out of the seven miRs under study, miR-3611 was the most strongly conserved across all species; miR-5197 was the most conserved in pangolin, pig, cow, bat, and rat; miR-1307 was most strongly conserved in pangolin, pig, cow, bat, and human; miR-3691-3p in pangolin, cow, and human; miR-3934-3p in pig and cow, followed by pangolin and bat; miR-1468 was most conserved in pangolin, pig, and bat; while miR-8066 was most conserved in pangolin and pig. In humans, miR-3611 and miR-1307 were most conserved, while miR-8066, miR-5197, miR-3334-3p and miR-1468 were least conserved, compared with pangolin, pig, cow, and bat. Furthermore, we identified that changes in the miR-5197 nucleotides between pangolin and human can generate three new miRs, with differing tissue distribution in the brain, lung, intestines, lymph nodes, and muscle, and with different downstream regulatory effects on KEGG pathways. This may be of considerable importance as miR-5197 is localized in the spike protein transcript area of the SARS-CoV-2 genome. Our findings may indicate roles for these miRs in viral-host co-evolution in zoonotic hosts, particularly highlighting pangolin, bat, cow, and pig as putative zoonotic carriers, while highlighting the miRs' roles in KEGG pathways linked to viral pathogenicity and host responses in humans. This in silico study paves the way for investigations into the roles of miRs in zoonotic disease.
    • A novel approach to oral iron delivery using ferrous sulphate loaded solid lipid nanoparticles

      Zariwala, Mohammed Gulrez; Elsaid, Naba; Jackson, Timothy L.; Corral López, Francisco; Farnaud, Sébastien; Somavarapu, Satyanarayana; Renshaw, Derek; University of Westminster; University College London; King's College Hospital; et al. (Elsevier, 2013-11-18)
      Iron (Fe) loaded solid lipid nanoparticles (SLN's) were formulated using stearic acid and iron absorption was evaluated in vitro using the cell line Caco-2 with intracellular ferritin formation as a marker of iron absorption. Iron loading was optimised at 1% Fe (w/w) lipid since an inverse relation was observed between initial iron concentration and SLN iron incorporation efficiency. Chitosan (Chi) was included to prepare chitosan coated SLN's. Particle size analysis revealed a sub-micron size range (300.3±31.75 nm to 495.1±80.42 nm), with chitosan containing particles having the largest dimensions. As expected, chitosan (0.1%, 0.2% and 0.4% w/v) conferred a net positive charge on the particle surface in a concentration dependent manner. For iron absorption experiments equal doses of Fe (20 μM) from selected formulations (SLN-FeA and SLN-Fe-ChiB) were added to Caco-2 cells and intracellular ferritin protein concentrations determined. Caco-2 iron absorption from SLN-FeA (583.98±40.83 ng/mg cell protein) and chitosan containing SLN-Fe-ChiB (642.77±29.37 ng/mg cell protein) were 13.42% and 24.9% greater than that from ferrous sulphate (FeSO4) reference (514.66±20.43 ng/mg cell protein) (p≤0.05). We demonstrate for the first time preparation, characterisation and superior iron absorption in vitro from SLN's, suggesting the potential of these formulations as a novel system for oral iron delivery.
    • The prediction of miRNAs in SARS-CoV-2 genomes: hsa-miR databases identify 7 key miRs linked to host responses and virus pathogenicity-related KEGG pathways significant for comorbidities

      Arisan, Elif Damla; Dart, Alwyn; Grant, Guy H.; Arisan, Serdar; Cuhadaroglu, Songul; Lange, Sigrun; Uysal-Onganer, Pinar; ; Gebze Technical University; St George’s University of London; et al. (MDPI, 2020-06-04)
      Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a member of the betacoronavirus family, which causes COVID-19 disease. SARS-CoV-2 pathogenicity in humans leads to increased mortality rates due to alterations of significant pathways, including some resulting in exacerbated inflammatory responses linked to the "cytokine storm" and extensive lung pathology, as well as being linked to a number of comorbidities. Our current study compared five SARS-CoV-2 sequences from different geographical regions to those from SARS, MERS and two cold viruses, OC43 and 229E, to identify the presence of miR-like sequences. We identified seven key miRs, which highlight considerable differences between the SARS-CoV-2 sequences, compared with the other viruses. The level of conservation between the five SARS-CoV-2 sequences was identical but poor compared with the other sequences, with SARS showing the highest degree of conservation. This decrease in similarity could result in reduced levels of transcriptional control, as well as a change in the physiological effect of the virus and associated host-pathogen responses. MERS and the milder symptom viruses showed greater differences and even significant sequence gaps. This divergence away from the SARS-CoV-2 sequences broadly mirrors the phylogenetic relationships obtained from the whole-genome alignments. Therefore, patterns of mutation, occurring during sequence divergence from the longer established human viruses to the more recent ones, may have led to the emergence of sequence motifs that can be related directly to the pathogenicity of SARS-CoV-2. Importantly, we identified 7 key-microRNAs (miRs 8066, 5197, 3611, 3934-3p, 1307-3p, 3691-3p, 1468-5p) with significant links to KEGG pathways linked to viral pathogenicity and host responses. According to Bioproject data (PRJNA615032), SARS-CoV-2 mediated transcriptomic alterations were similar to the target pathways of the selected 7 miRs identified in our study. This mechanism could have considerable significance in determining the symptom spectrum of future potential pandemics. KEGG pathway analysis revealed a number of critical pathways linked to the seven identified miRs that may provide insight into the interplay between the virus and comorbidities. Based on our reported findings, miRNAs may constitute potential and effective therapeutic approaches in COVID-19 and its pathological consequences.
    • The transfer of iron between ceruloplasmin and transferrins

      White, Kenneth N.; Conesa, Celia; Sánchez, Lourdes; Amini, Maryam; Farnaud, Sébastien; Lorvoralak, Chanakan; Evans, Robert W.; London Metropolitan University; Universidad de Zaragoza; Brunel University; et al. (Elsevier, 2012-03-28)
      It is over 60years since the discovery and isolation of the serum ferroxidase ceruloplasmin. In that time much basic information about the protein has been elucidated including its catalytic and kinetic properties as an enzyme, expression, sequence and structure. The importance of its biological role is indicated in genetic diseases such as aceruloplasminemia where its function is lost through mutation. Despite this wealth of data, fundamental questions about its action remain unanswered and in this article we address the question of how ferric iron produced by the ferroxidase activity of ceruloplasmin could be taken up by transferrins or lactoferrins. Overlapping peptide libraries for human ceruloplasmin have been probed with a number of different lactoferrins to identify putative lactoferrin-binding regions on human ceruloplasmin. Docking software, 3D-Garden, has been used to model the binding of human lactoferrin to human ceruloplasmin. Upon probing the human ceruloplasmin library with human lactoferrin, three predominantly acidic lactoferrin-binding peptides, located in domains 2, 5 and 6 of human ceruloplasmin, were identified. The docking software identified a complex such that the N-lobe of human apo-lactoferrin interacts with the catalytic ferroxidase centre on human ceruloplasmin. In vitro binding studies and molecular modelling indicate that lactoferrin can bind to ceruloplasmin such that a direct transfer of ferric iron between the two proteins is possible. A direct transfer of ferric iron from ceruloplasmin to lactoferrin would prevent both the formation of potentially toxic hydroxyl radicals and the utilization of iron by pathogenic bacteria. BACKGROUND METHODS RESULTS GENERAL SIGNIFICANCE