IUBMB Journals

IUBMB Journal Highlights | May 2022

We are excited to highlight new research from the IUBMB Journals: IUBMB Life, BioFactors, Biotechnology and Applied Biochemistry, and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education.

Please also consider submitting your own research to the IUBMB Journals. You can expect to work with distinguished Editorial Board members and benefit from worldwide circulation and readership through our publishing partnership with Wiley. For more information about the journal and submissions, feel free to peruse the IUBMB journals website.

For now, please enjoy highlights of our recent content. Happy reading!



New Issue: Volume 74, Issue 4IUBMB life cover

Issue Highlights

Evaluating the therapeutic efficacy of radiolabeled BSA@CuS nanoparticle-induced radio-photothermal therapy against anaplastic thyroid cancer

Chunmei Zhang, Jinyan Chai, Qiang Jia, Jian Tan, Zhaowei Meng, Ning Li, Menghui Yuan

First published: 03 February 2022

Bovine serum albumin (BSA) has been employed as a mild biological template in nanoscale particles. Copper sulfide (CuS) has been used for photothermal therapy (PTT) in several studies. In this study, we aimed to synthesize the 131I-labeled BSA-modified CuS nanoparticles (131I-BSA@CuS), with attributes of both radiotherapy and PTT, as a therapeutic agent against anaplastic thyroid carcinoma (ATC). BSA@CuS nanoparticles were prepared using the solvothermal reaction and then labeled with Na131I by the chloramine-T method. The products were characterized and their cytotoxicity was investigated in vitro and in vivo. The therapeutic efficacy of 131I-BSA@CuS was evaluated in ARO cell (an ATC cell line) subcutaneous tumors. The nanoparticles showed good biocompatibility and low toxicity in vitro and in vivo. BSA@CuS rapidly and effectively converted the light energy from an 808 nm laser into thermal energy with a conversion efficiency of 28.07%. SPECT/CT imaging demonstrated that the accumulation of radioactivity peaked within 24 hr and resided in the tumors for 5 days post intratumoral injection. In vivo assays indicated that, compared to monotherapy, the synthesized nanoparticles employing both PTT and radiotherapy possess better therapeutic efficacy against tumors. The synthesized nanomaterial showed uniform dispersion, good stability and aqueous solubility, excellent photothermal properties, and long-term retention in ATC. Hence, combined radiotherapy and PTT can significantly inhibit tumor growth compared to monotherapy, and can be applied in clinical settings.



The effects of 1,25(OH)2D3 treatment on immune responses and intracellular metabolic pathways of bone marrow-derived dendritic cells from lean and obese mice

Da Hye Cho, Ga Young Lee, Jeong Hee An, Sung Nim Han

First published: 28 December 2021

Vitamin D affects differentiation, maturation, and activation of dendritic cells (DCs). Obesity-related immune dysfunction is associated with metabolic changes in immune cells. Objectives of the study are to investigate the effects of vitamin D and obesity on immune responses and markers related to immunometabolism of bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (BMDCs). Bone marrow cells (BMCs) were isolated from lean and obese mice, and BMDCs were generated by culturing BMCs with rmGM-CSF. BMDCs were treated with 1 or 10 nM of 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 (1,25(OH)2D3), and maturation was induced by LPS (50 ng/ml) stimulation for 24 hr. Cell phenotypes, cytokine productions, and expression of proteins and genes involved in Akt/mTOR signaling pathway and glycolytic pathway were determined. 1,25(OH)2D3 treatment inhibited differentiation of BMDCs (CD11c+ %), expression of phenotypes related with DC function (MHC class II and CD86) and production of IL-12p70 in both lean and obese mice. The expression of PD-L1 and the ratio of IL-10/IL-12p70 were increased by 1,25(OH)2D3. With 1,25(OH)2D3 treatment, Akt/mTOR signaling pathway was suppressed, and expression of genes related to glycolysis (Glut1, Pfkfb4, and Hif1A) was increased. The upregulation of glycolysis-related genes observed with 1,25(OH)2D3 treatment seems to be associated with the induction of tolerogenic features of BMDCs from lean and obese mice, and Hif1A seems to have a potential role in conveying the effect of 1,25(OH)2D3 on glycolysis.



KLHL38 facilitates staurosporine-induced apoptosis in HL-1 cells via myocardin degradation

Ying Luo, Lei Tian, Chen Liang, Yao Xu

First published: 03 February 2022

Cardiac apoptosis has been identified as one of the main precipitating factors of heart failure (HF) throughout the whole course of progressive disease. Limited to the lack of diagnostic markers and effective drug targets, cardiac apoptosis is still a major clinical challenge. Here, we reveal a potential novel therapeutic target for cardiac apoptosis. In the cause of the study, we found that KLHL38 was highly expressed in cardiac tissue of HF patients via GEO data-mining, which was further verified in the heart tissue of transverse aortic constriction mice. Meanwhile, the expression of KLHL38 is negatively correlated with myocardin protein level, which is a key cardiac apoptosis regulator. The KLHL38 overexpression obviously promoted cardiomyocyte apoptosis treated with staurosporine by facilitation of myocardin’s ubiquitylation and subsequent proteasomal degradation. These findings reveal a new therapeutic target, which may provide a new theoretical foundation for the treatment of myocardial apoptosis in clinical practice.





                                  Long non-coding RNAs: sequence, structure, function and evolution IUBMB life cover

GUEST EDITORS:   Toni Gabaldón, Barcelona Supercomputing Center and Institute for Research in Biomedicine, Spain; Lovorka Stojic, Barts Cancer Institute, QMUL, UK; Uciel Chorostecki, Barcelona Supercomputing Center and Institute for Research in Biomedicine
Manuscripts should be submitted by 31 May 2022
Expected issue publication will be September 2022

                                  Multicellular Microenvironment Effects on the Modulation of Cell Functions IUBMB life cover

GUEST EDITOR:   Xiangya Ding, Nanjing Medical University
Deadline extension for manuscript submission 30 June 2022
Expected issue publication will be November 2022


Extracellular Matrix: The Dynamic Structural and Functional Network in Health and Disease IUBMB life cover

GUEST EDITOR:   Xiangya Ding, Nanjing Medical University
Deadline extension for manuscript submission 30 June 2022
Expected issue publication will be November 2022



See all the new IUBMB Life Virtual Issues here



BioFactors coverNew Special Issue: Volume 48, Issue 2

Issue Highlights

Maternal erythrocyte fatty acid composition as a predictive marker for pregnancy health

Shabnam Fayezi, Amir Mehdizadeh, Ariane Germeyer, Thomas Strowitzki, Parisa Fayyazpour, Zahra Nowrouzi, Reza Zarezadeh

First published: 31 March 2022

Pregnancy is accompanied by a surge in demand for fatty acids (FAs) in order to support maternal health, as well as fetal growth and development. Of particular demand is essential for long-chain polyunsaturated FAs. FAs are primarily obtained from dietary sources and are distributed in the body. In comparison with the use of self-reporting approaches, measuring the FA levels within different blood compartments can present a more accurate image of nutritional, and thus tissue, FA composition. Hence, the FA profile of plasma or serum is commonly used for physiological analyses. Nevertheless, plasma and serum FAs are not yet incorporated into cell membranes, and consequently may not be a suitable reflection of the FA status of body tissues. The evaluation of erythrocyte FA levels offers a superior possibility for the following reasons: the biological fluctuation of erythrocyte FA composition is low, phospholipids account for almost all the lipid content of erythrocytes, and the FA profiles of erythrocytes represent those of tissues. Here, we elaborate on whether the status of maternal erythrocyte FAs can serve as a prognostic biomarker for reproductive health and fetomaternal complications, including embryonic and fetoplacental development, gestational length, and preeclampsia. In addition, factors with the potential of altering the maternal erythrocyte FAs such as maternal diet, lifestyle habits, genetics, and body composition are discussed.



Biotechnology and Applied Biochemistry

Biotechnology and Applied Biochemistry coverVolume 69, Issue 2

Issue Highlights

An electrochemical aptasensor for detection of prostate-specific antigen-based on carbon quantum dots-gold nanoparticles

Mehrab Pourmadadi, Alireza Nouralishahi, Mohammad Shalbaf, Javad Shabani Shayeh, Amideddin Nouralishahi

First published: 19 March 2022

In this work, an electrochemical aptasensor was described for the determination of prostate-specific antigen (PSA). Aptamer chains were decorated on the surface of a glassy carbon electrode (GCE) via carbon quantum dots/Au nanoparticles (Au/CQD). Structural analysis that was used to characterize the prepared materials shows that Au/CQD nanoparticles synthesized in a spherical shape with an average size of 70 nm. Furthermore, the combination of Au nanoparticles with CQD resulted in formation of crystalline the structure of the Au/CQD composite. To study the electrochemical performance of the prepared aptasensor, cyclic voltammetry, square wave voltammetry, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy were used. The results show that the aptasensor has a good selectivity to PSA over other biomaterials with the time optimized about 30 min. K4[Fe(CN)6] was used as an electrochemical probe with the limit of detection about 2 fg⋅mL–1. To avoid the hazardous nature of K4[Fe(CN)6], a label-based aptasensor was prepared using methylene blue as an electrochemical signal producer. They provide the capability of electrochemical detection in buffer phosphate solution with high sensitivity.



Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education

New Virtual Issue on Teaching in the Time of COVID-19Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education

Volume 50, Issue 2

Issue Highlights

It is all about the students…

Joseph J. Provost

First published: 20 April 2022

Being nominated and then recognized by the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology’s (ASBMB) award for “Exemplary Contributions to Education” (https://www.asbmb.org/career-resources/awards-grants-fellowships/education) is an incredible honor. The people who have previously been bestowed with this accolade are impressive and have done extraordinary things. Each prior awardee has moved the needle to advance the education of undergraduate, graduate, or medical students beyond their individual classrooms and laboratories. However, understanding how I might be worthy of this award is a real struggle when encapsulating what I have done to earn this honor. Oh, I recognize that I have done many things, been involved in several groups, and been fortunate to be asked to serve on and volunteered to be on more than a few committees that required a serious amount of service. However, this does not make an award-winning moment. The unifying factor—what all of this work has been “it is about the students.”

Teaching the “acid–base” subject in biochemistry via virtual laboratory during the COVID-19 pandemic

Filiz Avcı

First published: 20 April 2022

Virtual laboratories have started to be the leading alternative teaching tools during the Covid-19 pandemic process. The “Acid–Base” subject is among those that form the foundations of biochemistry. Students can learn the “Acid–Base” subject in a secure environment, with remote access through the use of virtual laboratory simulations. Simulation was applied to fourth-year undergraduate students in Turkey who want to obtain a bachelor’s degree in science teaching during the present study. During the application process, the students conducted different experiments on the concepts of strong acid, strong base and pH, which are the basic concepts of biochemistry. In addition, student opinions regarding the application were also obtained. It was thus determined that the majority of the students were able to write hypotheses, test their accuracy and report the test findings correctly; a small number of students started to apply the simulations after examining them in accordance with scientific terminology. At the end of the application, the students also stated that they had fun during the application which also provided effective learning. It is recommended that classroom activity which is integrated with simulation be used in Chemistry, Biochemistry and Science Laboratory Applications courses.

acid base


Did you know? Wiley and Jisc just signed an agreement that allows UK authors to publish Open Access in the IUBMB Journals at no cost to them.

Thanks to a partnership our publisher Wiley has signed with Jisc, certain UK institutions now have full access to journals published by Wiley, including the IUBMB Journals. Further, the partnership enables authors at participating UK institutions to publish open access at no cost to them in the IUBMB Journals. Payment of the associated Article Publication Charges (APC) would be covered via the partnership, and authors will not need to cover the APCs from their own pockets.

Wiley has also signed similar agreements with universities in Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, Norway, Hungary, Finland, Sweden, and with the US-based OhioLink And VIVA.

Submit your research to the IUBMB Journals today.

Molecular Aspects of Medicine

Molecular Aspects of Medicine cover

Volume 82 (December 2021) 100973
Autophagy in liver diseases: A review
by Qian, Huia; Chao, Xiaojuan; Williams, Jessicaa; Fulte, Sam; Li, Tiangang; Yang, Ling; Ding, Wen-Xing