Mashenka Dimitrova

Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, Oblast Sofiya-Grad, Bulgaria

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Publications (7)14.72 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Lithium is extensively used in psychiatric practice for the prevention and treatment of manic-depressive disorders. However, neurotoxicity attributed to lithium salts within therapeutic doses was also reported in patients, manifested by transient or persistent neurological deficits. In this study, morphological changes were examined in rats treated acutely and chronically with lithium. Pathological changes were observed in different brain regions including cerebral cortex, cerebellum, medulla oblongata, mesencephalon, thalamus, and pons, using a silver-copper impregnation technique for neurodegeneration. Vacuolization of brain tissue with subsequent formation of spongiosis was the prominent morphological feature following lithium administration. The zones of spongiosis were irregularly distributed throughout the brain. More intensive compact areas with spongiform changes were found in the cerebral cortex and medulla oblongata. Less pronounced vacuolization was noted in the pons and thalamic region. The cerebellum and mesencephalon appeared least affected. Vacuolization in the cerebellar cortex was found at loci with Purkinje cells, but the classical picture of spongiosis was not apparent. Data indicate that both acute and chronic lithium intoxication accelerated neurodegenerative changes normally seen with normal brain aging.
    Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health Part A 02/2013; 76(4-5):304-10. · 1.83 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The development of red solid-state fluorochromes is important for different applications. The influence of the electronic effects of substituents on the chemical shifts in the 1H NMR spectra and solid-state fluorescent properties of aryl hydrazones of 4-hydrazino-N-hexyl-1,8-naphthalimide is evaluated. The main fragmentation pathway of hydrazones is determined using electrospray ionization mass spectrometry and high resolution MS/MS. A possible application of these fluorochromes for the in situ imaging of enzyme activities is presented.
    Tetrahedron. 01/2013; 69(2):712–721.
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    ABSTRACT: Dipeptidyl peptidase IV (DPPIV) was studied in three human lung cells - P (fetal lung-derived cells), A549 (lung adenocarcinoma) and SK-MES-1 (squamous cell carcinoma) using a fluorescent cytochemical procedure developed on the basis of the substrate 4-(glycyl-L-prolyl hydrazido)-N-hexyl-1,8-naphthalimide. The observed differences in the enzyme expression were confirmed by measuring the enzyme hydrolysis of glycyl-L-prolyl-para-nitroanilide. The surface and total dipeptidyl peptidase activities of P cells were correspondingly 7-8 and 3-10 times higher than those of SK-MES-1 and A549 cells. The ratio surface per total activity showed that in P (95%) and A549 (93%) cells the enzyme is associated with the plasmalemma while in SK-MES-1 cells (35%) it is bound to intracellular membranes. In order to compare the results from cell cultures with those in human tumor, the enzyme activity was investigated in cryo-sections of three cases of diagnosed squamous lung carcinoma. DPPIV activity was restricted to the connective tissue stroma surrounding the DPPIV-negative tumor foci.
    Tissue and Cell 12/2011; 44(2):74-9. · 1.05 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Tripeptidyl peptidase I (TPPI) - a lysosomal serine protease - is encoded by the CLN2 gene, mutations that cause late-infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (LINCL) connected with profound neuronal loss, severe clinical symptoms and early death at puberty. Developmental studies of TPPI activity levels and distribution have been done in the human and rat central nervous systems (CNS) and visceral organs. Similar studies have not been performed in mouse. In this paper, we follow up on the developmental changes in the enzyme activity and localization pattern in the CNS and visceral organs of mouse over the main periods of life - embryonic, neonate, suckling, infantile, juvenile, adult and aged - using biochemical assays and enzyme histochemistry. In the studied peripheral organs (liver, kidney, spleen, pancreas and lung) TPPI is present at birth but further its pattern is not consistent in different organs over different life periods. TPPI activity starts to be expressed in the brain at the 10th embryonic day but in most neuronal types it appears at the early infantile period, increases during infancy, reaches high activity levels in the juvenile period and is highest in adult and aged animals. Thus, in mice TPPI activity becomes crucial for the neuronal functions later in development (juvenile period) than in humans and does not decrease with aging. These results are essential as a basis for comparison between normal and pathological TPPI patterns in mice. They can be valuable in view of the use of animal models for studying LINCL and other neurodegenerative disorders.
    Cell and Tissue Research 11/2011; 346(2):141-9. · 3.33 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Absorption and fluorescence spectra in acetonitrile for a series of substituted aryl hydrazones of N-hexyl-1,8-naphthalimide are studied with the aim of potential application of the compounds for enzyme activity localization. The influence of the substituents on the spectral characteristics has been evaluated. The absorption and fluorescence energies of substituted aryl-1,8-naphthalimide hydrazones have been calculated with the PCM TDDFT formalism. The M06 and PBE0 functionals, combined with the 6-31+G(d) atomic basis set, have been found to accurately model the excited state properties of the present set of solvated fluorophores. Absorption and fluorescence spectral characteristics have been rationalized in terms of experimental and theoretical electronic indices in order to assess their predictive abilities for application in designing analogues with good emitting properties. An excellent linear dependence is established between the experimental fluorescence and Hammett σ(p)(+) substituent constants and on the other hand σ(p)(+) constants correlate with the theoretically calculated values for the electrostatic potential at nuclei (EPN). A model for predicting the fluorescence properties of substituted hydrazones by means of EPN is drawn, including the polysubstituted derivatives, where Hammett constants are not applicable.
    Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 09/2011; 13(41):18530-8. · 4.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Gly-Pro-, Gly-Pro-Met- and Ala-Ala-Phe-N'-(2-hexyl-1,3-dioxo-2,3-dihydro-1H-benzo[de]isoquinolin-6-yl)-hydrazides are synthesized by guanidinium/uronium type condensing reagent and used as fluorogenic substrates to localize dipeptidyl peptidase IV and tripeptidyl peptidase I activities in mammalian tissue sections. Enzyme hydrolysis releases 2-hexyl-6-hydrazino-1H-benzo[de]isoquinoline-1,3(2H)-dione, which couples with piperonal to form insoluble fluorescent hydrazone, precipitating on the enzyme locations and marking them. The fluorescent technique reveals precisely the enzymes locations at the lack of background noise in a single incubation step. It avoids most of the drawbacks of the previously proposed fluorescent histochemical techniques and can be valuable for the in situ studies of these enzymes in norm and pathology.
    European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 04/2008; 44(1):384-92. · 3.43 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Continuous activity of isolated frog gastrocnemius muscle fibres provoked by repetitive stimulation of 5 Hz was used as an experimental model for fatigue development in different fibre types. Parameter changes of the elicited intracellular action potentials and mechanical twitches during the period of uninterrupted activity were used as criteria for fatigue evaluation. Slow fatigable muscle fibre (SMF) and fast fatigable muscle fibre (FMF) types were distinguished depending on the duration of their uninterrupted activity, which was significantly longer in SMFs than in FMFs. The normalized changes of action potential amplitude and duration were significantly smaller in FMFs than in SMFs. The average twitch force and velocity of contraction and relaxation were significantly higher in FMFs than in SMFs. Myosin ATPase (mATPase) and succinate dehydrogenase activity were studied by histochemical assessment in order to validate the fibre type classification based on their electrophysiological characteristics. Based on the relative mATPase reactivity, the fibres of the studied muscle were classified as one of five different types (1-2, 2, 2-3, 3 and tonic). Smaller sized fibres (tonic and type 3) expressed higher succinate dehydrogenase activity than larger sized fibres (type 1-2, 2), which is related to the fatigue resistance. The differences between fatigue development in SMFs and FMFs during continuous activity were associated with fibre-type specific mATPase and succinate dehydrogenase activity.
    General Physiology and Biophysics 01/2006; 24(4):381-96. · 0.88 Impact Factor