Vol 2, No 2 (2010)


Letter from the Editors

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Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):1-1
pages 1-1 views

Russian Federation State Prize in Science and Technology for 2009

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The Russian Federation State Prize in Science and Technology for 2009 honoring scientists for "A Set of Scientific Works on the Development of Laser and Information Technologies in Medicine" (Presidential Decree no. 678, June 6, 2010) was awarded to V.Ya. Panchenko, doctor of physical and mathematical sciences, academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences, director of the Institute of Laser and Information Technologies, Russian Academy of Sciences; to A.A. Potapov, doctor of medical sciences, Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, deputy director of the Burdenko Neurosurgery Research Institute, Medical Academy of Medical Sciences; and to V.I. Chissov, doctor of medical sciences, academician of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, director of Herzen's Cancer Research Institute, Moscow.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):6-6
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Scientific Personnel

Ohapkin I.


The federal targeted program (FTP) Scientific and Science-Oriented Educational Personnel started out in 2009. One of its projects was meant to support scientific research conducted by educational scientific centers (ESC). We decided to ask some questions that are regularly of interest to ESC groups applying for grants with the program, and Head of the Department of Programs and Projects at Rosnauka Gennadiy Shepelev agreed to answer them.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):7-9
pages 7-9 views

What is the situation with Personnel in Life Sciences?

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Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):10-11
pages 10-11 views

Customs Barriers in the Way of Progress in Biotechnology

Sinyavskaya S.


Scientific research in the field of Life Sciences is impossible without international cooperation, which means that no research is possible without foreign equipment, reagents, laboratory animals and biological materials. Yet, customs regulations in the field of biotechnology are raising more and more questions from scientists. Passing customs control takes up a lot of time, energy and funds. Can these bureaucratic procedures be simplified for the international transportation of goods for scientific research?
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):12-17
pages 12-17 views

Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells: Problems and Advantages when Applying them in Regenerative Medicine

Medvedev S.P., Shevchenko A.I., Zakian S.M.


Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) are a new type of pluripotent cells that can be obtained by reprogramming animal and human differentiated cells. In this review, issues related to the nature of iPSCs are discussed and different methods of iPSC production are described. We particularly focused on methods of iPSC production without the genetic modification of the cell genome and with means for increasing the iPSC production efficiency. The possibility and issues related to the safety of iPSC use in cell replacement therapy of human diseases and a study of new medicines are considered.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):18-27
pages 18-27 views

Bioglycans and Natural Glycosides As a Promising Research Topic in Bioorganic Chemistriy

Ovodov Y.S.


This review defines bioorganic chemistry as one of the most important constituents of physico-chemical biology, which is a fundamental life science. The problems and goals of bioorganic chemistry are examined through a comparatively small number of examples. Bioorganic chemistry is supposed to be a logical continuation of the chemistry of the natural substances that arose many years ago. Bioorganic chemistry has contributed some achievements in solving the problems of the chemical structure, biological function, and physiological activity of biopolymers and low-molecular-weight bioregulators, as well as in the elucidation of the molecular mechanisms of different life processes. The most striking achievements in bioorganic chemistry are discussed in this paper. However, this review discusses not only the general achievements in this field of science, but also research data obtained by scientists from the Pacific Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, Far East Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences (Vladivostok, Russia), and the Institute of Physiology, Komi Science Centre, The Urals Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences (Syktyvkar, Russia). Particular attention is focused on comprehensive research into polysaccharides and biopolymers (bioglycans) and some natural glycosides that the author of this review has studied for a long time. The author has worked in these institutes for a long time and was honored by being chosen to head one of the scientific schools in the field of bioorganic chemistry and molecular immunology.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):28-35
pages 28-35 views

New Trends in Nucleoside Biotechnology

Mikhailopulo I.A., Miroshnikov A.I.


This review focuses on new trends in nucleoside biotechnology, which have emerged during the last decade. Continuously growing interest in the study of this class of compounds is fueled by a number of factors: (i) a growing need for large-scale production of natural 2'-deoxy-β-D-ribonucleosides as well as their analogs with modifications in the carbohydrate and base fragments, which can then be used for the synthesis and study of oligonucleotides, including short-interfering RNA (siRNA), microRNA (miRNA), etc.; (ii) a necessity for the development of efficient practical technologies for the production of biologically important analogs of natural nucleosides, including a number of anticancer and antiviral drugs; (iii) a need for further study of known and novel enzymatic transformations and their use as tools for the efficient synthesis of new nucloside analogs and derivates with biomedical potential. This article will review all of these aspects and also include a brief retrospect of this field of research.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):36-58
pages 36-58 views

Skeletal Muscle Activity and the Fate of Myonuclei

Shenkman B.S., Turtikova O.V., Nemirovskaya T.L., Grigoriev A.I.


ABSTRACT Adult skeletal muscle fiber is a symplast multinuclear structure developed in ontogenesis by the fusion of the myoblasts (muscle progenitor cells). The nuclei of a muscle fiber (myonuclei) are those located at the periphery of fiber in the space between myofibrils and sarcolemma. In theory, a mass change in skeletal muscle during exercise or unloading may be associated with the altered myonuclear number, ratio of the transcription, and translation and proteolysis rates. Here we review the literature data related to the phenomenology and hypothetical mechanisms of the myonuclear number alterations during enhanced or reduced muscle contractile activity. In many cases (during severe muscle and systemic diseases and gravitational unloading), muscle atrophy is accompanied by a reduction in the amount of myonuclei. Such reduction is usually explained by the development of myonuclear apoptosis. A myonuclear number increase may be provided only by the satellite cell nuclei incorporation via cell fusion with the adjacent myofiber. It is believed that it is these cells which supply fiber with additional nuclei, providing postnatal growth, work hypertrophy, and repair processes. Here we discuss the possible mechanisms controlling satellite cell proliferation during exercise, functional unloading, and passive stretch.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):59-65
pages 59-65 views

Bioinformatic Analysis, Molecular Modeling of Role of Lys65 Residue in Catalytic Triad of D-aminopeptidase from Ochrobactrum anthropi

Khaliullin I.G., Suplatov D.A., Shalaeva D.N., Otsuka M., Asano Y., Svedas V.K.


ABSTRACT A bioinformatic and phylogenetic study has been performed on a family of penicillin-binding proteins including D-aminopeptidases, D-amino acid amidases, DD-carboxypeptidases, and β-lactamases. Significant homology between D-aminopeptidase from Ochrobactrum anthropi and other members of the family has been shown and a number of conserved residues identified as S62, K65, Y153, N155, H287, and G289. Three of those (Ser62, Lys65, and Tyr153) form a catalytic triangle - the proton relay system that activates the generalized nucleophile in the course of catalysis. Molecular modeling has indicated the conserved residue Lys65 to have an unusually low pKa value, which has been confirmed experimentally by a study of the pH-profile of D-aminopeptidase catalytic activity. The resulting data have been used to elucidate the role of Lys65 in the catalytic mechanism of D-aminopeptidase as a general base for proton transfer from catalytic Ser62 to Tyr153, and vice versa, during the formation and hydrolysis of the acylenzyme intermediate.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):66-70
pages 66-70 views

Development of Recombinant Vaccine against A(H1N1) 2009 Influenza Based on Virus-like Nanoparticles Carrying the Extracellular Domain of M2 Protein

Kotlyarov R.Y., Kuprianov V.V., Migunov A.I., Stepanova L.A., Tsybalova L.M., Kiselev O.I., Ravin N.V., Skryabin K.G.


The conventional vaccines currently being used to deal with influenza are based on a virus obtained in chicken embryos or its components. The high variability of the major immunogenic surface proteins - hemagglutinin and neuraminidase-require the development of strain-specific vaccines that match the antigenic specificity of a newly emerging virus. Recombinant vaccines based on single viral proteins that could be easily produced in standard expression systems are attractive alternatives to traditional influenza vaccines. We constructed recombinant nanosized virus-like particles based on a nuclear antigen of the hepatitis B virus. These particles expose on the surface the extracellular domain of the M2 protein of the highly pathogenic A(H1N1) 2009 influenza virus. The methods of production of these virus-like particles in Escherichia coli and their purification were developed. Experiments on animals show that M2sHBc particles are highly immunogenic in mice and provide complete protection against the lethal influenza challenge.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):71-76
pages 71-76 views

Effects of Myosin "Essential" Light Chain A1 on the Aggregation Properties of the Myosin Head

Markov D.I., Nikolaeva O.P., Levitsky D.I.


We compared the thermal aggregation properties of two isoforms of the isolated myosin head (myosin subfragment 1, S1) containing different “essential” (or “alkali”) light chains, A1 or A2. Temperature dependencies for the aggregation of these two S1 isoforms, as measured by the increase in turbidity, were compared with the temperature dependencies of their thermal denaturation obtained from differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) experiments. At relatively high ionic strength (in the presence of 100 mM KCl) close to its physiological values in muscle fibers, we have found no appreciable difference between the two S1 isoforms in their thermally induced aggregation. Under these conditions, the aggregation of both S1 isoforms was independent of the protein concentration and resulted from their irreversible denaturation, which led to the cohesion of denatured S1 molecules. In contrast, a significant difference between these S1 isoforms was revealed in their aggregation measured at low ionic strength. Under these conditions, the aggregation of S1 containing a light chain A1 (but not A2) was strongly dependent on protein concentration, the increase of which (from 0.125 to 2.0 mg/ml) shifted the aggregation curve by ~10 degrees towards the lower temperatures. It has been concluded that the aggregation properties of this S1 isoform at low ionic strength is basically determined by intermolecular interactions of the N-terminal extension of the A1 light chain (which is absent in the A2 light chain) with other S1 molecules. These interactions seem to be independent of the S1 thermal denaturation, and they may take place even at low temperature.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):77-81
pages 77-81 views

Influence of Ion Strength and pH on Thermal Stability of Yeast Formate Dehydrogenase

Tishkov V.I., Uglanova S.V., Fedorchuk V.V., Savin S.S.


The kinetics of the thermal inactivation of recombinant wild-type formate dehydrogenase from Candida boidinii yeast was studied in the temperature range of 53-61 oC and pH 6.0, 7.0, and 8.0. It was shown that the loss of the enzyme’s activity proceeds via a monomolecular mechanism. Activation parameters ∆≠ and ∆S≠ were calculated based on the temperature relations dependence of inactivation rate constants according to the transition state theory. Both parameters are in a range that corresponds to globular protein denaturation processes. Optimal conditions for the stability of the enzyme were high concentrations of the phosphate buffer or of the enzyme substrate sodium formate at pH = 7.0.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):82-87
pages 82-87 views

Anionic Lipids: Determinants of Binding Cytotoxins from Snake Venom on the Surface of Cell Membranes

Konshina A.G., Boldyrev I.A., Omelkov A.V., Utkin Y.N., Efremov R.G.


The cytotoxic properties of cytotoxins (CTs) from snake venom are mediated by their interaction with the cell membrane. The hydrophobic pattern containing the tips of loops I-III and flanked by polar residues is known to be a membrane-binding motif of CTs. However, this is not enough to explain the difference in activity among various CTs which are similar in sequence and in 3D structure. The mechanism of further CT-membrane interaction leading to pore formation and cell death still remains unknown. Published experimental data on the specific interaction between CT and low molecular weight anionic components (sulphatide) of the bilayer point to the existence of corresponding ligand binding sites on the surface of toxin molecules. In this work we study the membrane-lytic properties of CT I, CT II (Naja oxiana), and CT 4 (Naja kaouthia), which belong to different structural and functional types (P- and S-type) of CTs, by measuring the intensity of a fluorescent dye, calcein released from liposomes containing a phosphatidylserine (PS) lipid as an anionic component. Using molecular docking simulations, we find and characterize three sites in CT molecules that can potentially bind the PS polar head. Based on the data obtained, we suggest a hypothesis that CTs can specifically interact with one or more of the anionic lipids (in particular, with PS) contained in the membrane, thus facilitating the interaction between CTs and the lipid bilayer of a cell membrane.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):88-95
pages 88-95 views

2D-gel Electrophoresis As a Tool to Investigate the Composition of CD95 DISC

Riess D., Lavrik I.


Stimulation of CD95 (APO-1/Fas) leads to apoptosis induction in multicellular organisms. CD95-mediated apoptosis starts with the formation of the protein complex at the receptor CD95 (APO-1/Fas), which was named DISC (death-inducing signaling complex). In this work, the composition of the CD95 DISC in two different cell types was analyzed using proteomics approaches. Using 2D gels, the composition of the CD95 DISC was analyzed in the so-called Type I and Type II cells, which are characterized by different kinetics of apoptosis. The detailed analysis of the CD95 DISC performed by 2D gels demonstrated that, besides the well-established components of the CD95 DISC, which are present in both cell types (CD95, FADD and procaspase-8), there are a number of differential spots detected at the CD95 DISC of Type I versus Type II cells. Taken together, this work demonstrates the differential composition of the CD95 DISC of Type I versus Type II cells.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):96-101
pages 96-101 views

Derivation of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells from Fetal Human Skin Fibroblasts

Medvedev S.P., Malakhova A.A., Grigor'eva E.V., Shevchenko A.I., Dementyeva E.V., Sobolev I.A., Lebedev I.N., Shilov A.G., Zhimulev I.F., Zakian S.M.


The isolation and study of autologous human stem cells remain among the most urgent problems in cell biology and biomedicine to date. Induced pluripotent stem cells can be derived from human somatic cells by the overexpression of a number of genes. In this study we reprogrammed fetal human skin fibroblasts by transduction with retroviral vectors carrying murine Oct4, Sox2, Klf4, and c-Myc cDNAs. As a result, cells with the protein expression and gene transcription pattern characteristic of human embryonic stem cells were derived. These induced pluripotent cells are capable of differentiation in vitro into the ectoderm, mesoderm, and endoderm derivatives.
Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):102-104
pages 102-104 views

Guidelines for Authors

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Acta Naturae. 2010;2(2):106-107
pages 106-107 views

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