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    ABSTRACT: patient experience is now a key parameter in health care. Yet, very little is known about the possible impact of dentist-patient relationships on patient-centred outcomes including older peoples' oral health-related quality of life (OHRQoL). this study assessed the relationship between OHRQoL and dentist-patient relationships related to perceived unmet dental needs; shared decision-making; time spent discussing oral health problems; respect and confidence and trust.Participants: older people aged 65 years and over living in East London, UK in 2011. a cross-sectional study using stratified random sampling recruited a representative sample of older people (n = 772). Participants completed an oral examination and a structured questionnaire including the Oral Health Impact Profile-14 (OHIP-14) measuring OHRQoL and five dentist-patient relationship questions taken from the UK 2009 Adult Dental Health Survey. Multivariate Poisson regressions modelled the association between OHRQoL and dentist-patient factors adjusting for socio-demographic factors, clinical oral indicators, and dental attendance. having a perceived unmet need for dental treatment (PRR = 1.84; 95% CI: 1.32, 2.56) and expressing a lack of trust and confidence in one's dentist (PRR = 1.74; 95% CI: 1.01, 2.98) were significant predictors of poor OHRQoL among older people. these findings suggest that older people with unmet dental needs and those who expressed a lack of trust and confidence in their dentist were more likely to experience poor OHRQoL reinforcing the importance of the dental patient experience in healthy ageing and well-being.
    Age and Ageing 11/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: Epigenetic reprogramming of the methylome has been implicated in all stages of cancer evolution. It is now well accepted that cancer cells exploit epigenetic reprogramming, a mechanism that regulates stem/progenitor cell renewal and differentiation, to promote cancer initiation and progression. The oncogene FOXM1 has been implicated in all major forms of human cancer. We have recently shown that aberrant upregulation of FOXM1 orchestrated a DNA methylation signature that mimics the cancer methylome landscape, from which we have identified a number of FOXM1-induced epigenetic markers. Differential promoter methylation and gene expression in clinical specimens were measured using commercially available bisulfite conversion kits and absolute quantitative PCR, respectively. Here, we investigated 8 FOXM1-induced differentially methylated genes, SPCS1, FLNA, CHPF, GLT8D1, C6orf136, MGAT1, NDUFA10, and PAFAH1B3, using human head and neck tissue specimens donated by 2 geographically independent patient cohorts from Norway and the United Kingdom. Two genes (GLT8D1 and C6orf136) were found to be differentially expressed in head and neck squamous cell carcinomas (HNSCCs). Using methylation-specific quantitative PCR, we confirmed that the promoters of GLT8D1 and C6orf136 were hypo- and hypermethylated, respectively, in HNSCC tissues. Given that epigenetic change precedes gene expression, methylation status of candidate genes identified from this study may represent a signature of premalignancy, rendering them potentially useful predictive biomarkers for precancer screening and/or therapeutic targets for cancer prevention. Cancer 2013;. © 2013 American Cancer Society.
    Cancer 10/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: TLRs are PRRs that play a pivotal role in sensing exogenous pathogens and endogenous danger signals. Their role in the pathogenesis of inflammatory and immune-related diseases is gradually being unravelled. TLR2 and TLR4 are capable of sensing the oral microbial community, which is considered a potential trigger for Behçet's disease (BD). This study aimed to investigate the expression and function of TLR2 and TLR4 in the oral mucosa of BD. A total of 87 patients was included: 55 BD, 24 healthy controls and eight recurrent aphthous stomatitis. Total RNA was purified from non-lesional oral mucosal brush biopsies and analysed for the presence of TLR2 and TLR4 mRNA, along with their splice variants. The response of peripheral blood mononuclear cells to classical TLR2 and TLR4 agonists was also investigated. TLR2b, TLR2d, TLR2e, TLR4.3 and TLR4.4 were significantly elevated in relapsed BD. A significant defect in the response to cognate agonists of TLR1/2 heterodimer and TLR4 was also observed in BD. The expression of unusual splice variants of TLR2 and TLR4 might explain the observed defect in these receptors' function in BD.
    Innate Immunity 08/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: The long chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and its metabolite docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), inhibit cancer formation in vivo but their mechanism of action is unclear. ERK1/2 activation and inhibition have both been associated with the induction of tumor cell apoptosis by n-3 PUFAs. We show here that low doses of EPA, in particular, inhibited the growth of pre-malignant and malignant keratinocytes more than their normal counterparts by a combination of cell cycle arrest and apoptosis. The growth inhibition of the oral squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) lines but not normal keratinocytes, by both n-3 PUFAs was associated with epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) autophosphorylation, a sustained phosphorylation of ERK1/2 and its downstream target p90RSK but not with phosphorylation of the PI3 kinase target Akt. Inhibition of EGFR with either the EGFR kinase inhibitor AG1478, or an EGFR blocking antibody, inhibited ERK1/2 phosphorylation and the blocking antibody partially antagonized growth inhibition by EPA, but not by DHA. DHA generated more reactive oxygen species and activated more JNK than EPA, potentially explaining its increased toxicity to normal keratinocytes. Our results show that, in part, EPA specifically inhibits SCC growth and development by creating a sustained signaling imbalance to amplify the EGFR/ERK/p90RSK pathway in neoplastic keratinocytes to a supra-optimal level, supporting the chemopreventative potential of EPA, whose toxicity to normal cells might be reduced further by blocking its metabolism to DHA. Furthermore, ERK1/2 phosphorylation may have potential as a biomarker of n-3 PUFA function in vivo.
    Carcinogenesis 07/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: Desmoglein 3 (Dsg3), the pemphigus vulgaris antigen, has recently been shown to be upregulated in squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) and has been identified as a good tumor-specific marker for clinical staging of cervical sentinel lymph nodes in head and neck SCC. However, little is known about its biological function in cancer. The actin-binding protein Ezrin and the activator protein 1 (AP-1) transcription factor are implicated in cancer progression and metastasis. Here, we report that Dsg3 regulates the activity of c-Jun/AP-1 as well as protein kinase C (PKC)-mediated phosphorylation of Ezrin-Thr567, which contributes to the accelerated motility of cancer cells. Ectopic expression of Dsg3 in cancer cell lines caused enhanced phosphorylation at Ezrin-Thr567 with concomitant augmented membrane protrusions, cell spreading and invasive phenotype. We showed that Dsg3 formed a complex with Ezrin at the plasma membrane that was required for its proper function of interacting with F-actin and CD44 as Dsg3 knockdown impaired these associations. The increased Ezrin phosphorylation in Dsg3-overexpressing cells could be abrogated substantially by various pharmacological inhibitors for Ser/Thr kinases, including PKC and Rho kinase that are known to activate Ezrin. Furthermore, a marked increase in c-Jun S63 phosphorylation, among others, was found in Dsg3-overexpressing cells and the activation of c-Jun/AP-1 was further supported by a luciferase reporter assay. Taken together, our study identifies a novel Dsg3-mediated c-Jun/AP-1 regulatory mechanism and PKC-dependent Ezrin phosphorylation that could be responsible for Dsg3-associated cancer metastasis.Oncogene advance online publication, 10 June 2013; doi:10.1038/onc.2013.186.
    Oncogene 06/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: The long chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) have been reported to exert anti-cancer effects. At this study we tested the effect of the omega-3 PUFA, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), on pre-malignant keratinocytes growth in the well-characterised human pre-malignant epidermal cell line, HaCaT and attempted to identify a PUFA serum antagonist. Both EPA and DHA inhibited HaCaT growth and induced apoptosis. At the 10% vol/vol foetal bovine serum (FBS) medium, limited growth inhibition (3%-20% for 50μM DHA and EPA respectively) and negligible apoptosis were observed with PUFA use. However, at 3% vol/vol FBS medium, 30-50μM of PUFA caused impressive levels of growth inhibition (82%-83% for 50μM DHA and EPA respectively) and increase of apoptosis (8%-19% increase in 72h). None of the numerous serum growth factors present in FBS or the antioxidant n-tert-butyl-α-phenylnitrone could inhibit the PUFA-induced cytotoxicity. In contrast, bovine and human albumin (0.1-0.3% w/v) significantly antagonized the growth inhibitory and apoptosis-inducing effects of PUFA. In conclusion, we have shown for the first time that omega-3 PUFA inhibit the growth and induce apoptosis of pre-malignant keratinocytes and identified albumin as a major antagonistic factor in serum that could limit their effectiveness at pharmacologically-achievable doses.
    Toxicology Letters 02/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: Keratin 15 (K15) is type I keratin protein co-expressed with the K5/K14 pair present in the basal keratinocytes of all stratified epithelia. Although it is a minor component of the cytoskeleton with a variable expression pattern, nonetheless its expression has been reported as a stem cell marker in the bulge of hair follicles. Conversely, suprabasal expression of K15 has also been reported in both normal and diseased tissues, which is inconsistent with its role as a stem cell marker. Our recently published work has given evidence of the molecular pathways that seem to control the expression of K15 in undifferentiated and differentiated cells. In this article, we have critically reviewed the published work to establish the reliability of K15 as an epidermal stem cell marker.
    International Journal of Molecular Sciences 01/2013; 14(10):19385-98.
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    ABSTRACT: Histopathological discordance with molecular phenotype of many human cancers poses clinically challenging tasks for accurate cancer diagnosis which impacts on treatment strategy and patient outcome. Hence, an objective, accurate and quantitative method is needed. A quantitative Malignancy Index Diagnostic System (qMIDS) was developed based on 14 FOXM1 (isoform B)-associated genes implicated in the regulation of the cell cycle, differentiation, ageing, genomic stability, epigenetic and stem cell renewal, and two reference genes. Their mRNA expression levels were translated via a prospectively designed algorithm, into a metric scoring system. Subjects from UK and Norway (n=299) provided 359 head and neck tissue specimens. Diagnostic test performance was assessed using detection rate (DR) and false-positive rate (FPR).The median qMIDS scores were 1.3, 2.9 and 6.7 in healthy tissue, dysplasia and head and neck squamous cell carcinomas (HNSCC), respectively (UK prospective dataset, p<0.001); 1.4, 2.3 and 7.6 in unaffected, oral lichen planus, or HNSCC respectively (Norwegian retrospective dataset with up to 19 years survival data, p<0.001). At a qMIDS cut-off of 4.0, DR was 94% and FPR was 3.2% (Norwegian dataset); and DR was 91% and FPR was 1.3% (UK dataset). We further demonstrated the transferability of qMIDS for diagnosing (pre)-malignant human vulva (n=58) and skin (n=21) SCCs, illustrating its potential clinical use for other cancer types.This study provided evidence that qMIDS was able to quantitatively diagnose and objectively stratify cancer aggressiveness. With further validation, qMIDS could enable early HNSCC detection and guide appropriate treatment. Early treatment intervention can lead to long-term reduction in healthcare costs and improve patient outcome.
    International Journal of Cancer 10/2012;
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    Biomarkers in Medicine 08/2012; 6(4):499-501.
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    ABSTRACT: Desmoglein 3 (Dsg3), a member of the desmoglein sub-family, serves as an adhesion molecule in desmosomes. Our previous study showed that overexpression of human Dsg3 in several epithelial lines induces formation of membrane protrusions, a phenotype suggestive of Rho GTPase activation. Here we examined the interaction between Dsg3 and actin in detail and showed that endogenous Dsg3 colocalises and interacts with actin, particularly the junctional actin in a Rac1-dependent manner. Ablation of Rac1 activity by dominant negative Rac1 mutant (N17Rac1) or the Rac1 specific inhibitor (NSC23766) directly disrupts the interaction between Dsg3 and actin. Assembly of the junctional actin at the cell borders is accompanied with enhanced levels of Dsg3, while inhibition of Dsg3 by RNAi results in profound changes in the organisation of actin cytoskeleton. In accordance, overexpression of Dsg3 results in a remarkable increase of Rac1 and Cdc42 activities and to a lesser extent, RhoA. The enhancements in Rho GTPases are accompanied by the pronounced actin-based membrane structures such as lamellipodia and filopodia, enhanced rate of actin turnover and cell polarisation. Together, our results reveal an important novel function for Dsg3 in promoting actin dynamics through regulating Rac1 and Cdc42 activation in epithelial cells.
    Experimental Cell Research 07/2012; 318(18):2269-83.
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