The video shows an indepth explanation of how the electron transport chain works. I hope it is helpful to all the biochemians.

Video  —  Posted: April 14, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

The video shows how the glucose molecule is broken down to two molecules of pyruvate by the process of glycolysis. The pyruvate molecules are broken down by the enzyme pyruvate dehydrogenase complex into the two carbon Acetyl-COA which is needed to enter the mitochondria from the cytoplasm. The Acetyl-COA is used for the beginning of the process called the Kreb’s Cycle, the purpose of the Kreb’s Cycle is to create the molecules ATP, NADH and FADH which is needed for the ETC also known as the electron transport chain. I hope this video is very useful and would help my fellow biochemians.

Video  —  Posted: April 14, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , ,

The reason why I did this video report because it was very helpful in explaining the symptoms of kwashiorkor diseases and that infants can be diagnosed with the disease at the early ages of one month old and onwards. It can also be seen that the occurrence of kwashiorkor disease can cause other diseases in the body for example nonketotic hyperglycinemia. Eventhough there was not much indepth explanation of the biochemical makeup of the diseases. I think how the video showed how the symptoms of the disease can deform the skin of the individuals infected. This video can be very helpful to all biochemians to learn more about this disease.

Kwashiorkor is a disease that mostly affects children and is caused by an inadequate amount of protein in the diet. It is also referred to as protein malnutrition or malignant nutrition. It usually develops in areas afflicted by famine or drought or in places where food is scarce. Areas characterized by a lack or reduced levels of education are also prone to this illness, due to a non-understanding of its causes.

The symptoms of kwashiorkor appear very early on in the child, the most characteristic sign being an enlarged and swollen stomach. The hair develops a reddish tinge and becomes very brittle. Skin color may also get affected. The weight loss is excessive and growth becomes stunted. Due to an extremely reduced level of functioning of the immune system, the child may develop many other diseases and infections. The child also becomes fatigued and irritable. Dermatitis and rashes are common on the skin. In later stages, the child could even go into a coma.
It is important that kwashiorkor is detected and treated early, as delayed treatment will put the child at risk to other infections, and may also leave permanent damage to the child’s physical and mental functioning. Research has indicated that malnutrition in the early years of a child can lower IQ levels permanently. In addition, physical growth is also disrupted. The seriousness of the condition will determine the type of treatment that needs to be administered. If the condition is severe, the child’s blood sugar level needs to be immediately restored. This involves giving the child carbohydrates and fats, which will increase the calories. Once the energy has been increased, proteins can be given to the child. Other nutrients such as minerals and vitamins are also administered in the form of supplements. The child must be made to consume these foods slowly, as the system is not used to processing proper amounts of food. Even if kwashiorkor is treated in its last stages, it is possible for the child’s health to improve. However, long lasting physical and mental problems may develop. If the condition is not treated at all, it could prove fatal for the child. In very poor countries, the affected children may not be able to get the necessary food that will help them recover from this condition. Medical help is also something that is completely out of their reach. As such, the developed countries must make available basic food to these children so that they grow and function properly.

Video  —  Posted: April 13, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , ,

HOW TAY-SACHS DISEASE IS INHERITED?

I thought that this picture would be additional helpful to the information that I posted before about Tay-Sachs Disease because it demonstrates how the disease can be transferred genetically to offspring, I hope it is as helpful to other biochemians as it was helpful to me.

Image  —  Posted: April 13, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , , ,

The reason why I did this video for my video report is that Tay-Sachs Diseases occur in infants primarily and there has not been a cure synthesized to be able to reduce the death rate of infants diagnosed with the disease. Although the disease causes the early demise of infants, the biochemistry and the complexity of the disease is very interesting to study.

Tay-Sachs disease is a fatal genetic lipid storage disorder in which harmful quantities of a fatty substance called ganglioside GM2 build up in tissues and nerve cells in the brain. The condition is caused by insufficient activity of an enzyme called beta-hexosaminidase A that catalyzes the biodegradation of acidic fatty materials known asgangliosides. Gangliosides are made and biodegraded rapidly in early life as the brain develops. Ganglioside storage in the surrounding cells obscures the chorodial vessels and causes a white rim around the macula.

Infants with Tay-Sachs disease appear to develop normally for the first few months of life. Then, as nerve cells become distended with fatty material, a relentless deterioration of mental and physical abilities occurs. The child becomes blind, deaf, and unable to swallow. Muscles begin to atrophy and paralysis sets in. Other neurological symptoms include dementia, seizures, and an increased startle reflex to noise. A much rarer form of the disorder occurs in patients in their twenties and early thirties and is characterized by an unsteady gait and progressive neurological deterioration. Persons with Tay-Sachs also have “cherry-red” spots in their eyes. The incidence of Tay-Sachs is particularly high among people of Eastern European and Askhenazi Jewish descent. Patients and carriers of Tay-Sachs disease can be identified by a simple blood test that measures beta-hexosaminidase A activity. Both parents must carry the mutated gene in order to have an affected child. In these instances, there is a 25 percent chance with each pregnancy that the child will be affected with Tay-Sachs disease.
Presently there is no treatment for Tay-Sachs disease. Anticonvulsant medicine may initially control seizures. Other supportive treatment includes proper nutrition and hydration and techniques to keep the airway open. Children may eventually need a feeding tube.

Even with the best of care, children with Tay-Sachs disease usually die by age 4, from recurring infection.

Video  —  Posted: April 13, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

Human Immunodeficiency Virus, also known as HIV is a retrovirus that causes the Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome called AIDS.  A sexually transmitted disease, which has a recorded approximately two hundred and thirty five thousand six hundred people infected from the years 2001 to 2012.  There have been scientists who have been trying to track the evolution of a powerful immune molecule that recognizes many different HIV viruses.  A group of researchers headed by Barton Haynes of Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, North Carolina discovered that the broadly neutralizing antibodies developed after the population of viruses in the patients had diversified. HIV has been scientifically determined that the retrovirus mutates so frequently that it has been complicated to formulate a vaccine that would be able to identify all forms of the virus to be extremely effective.  By studying broadly neutralizing antibodies, HIV vaccine designers have attempted to engineer an antibody that would have the capability to bind and recognize many different HIV viruses. The structure of HIV can be represented as this molecule: 

Image

 

Haynes said “A message of our paper that broad neutralizing antibodies don’t have to be complicated as we thought, and therefore may be more easily induced.”  The statement made by Haynes suggest that in order for scientist to be able to devise an antibody to neutralize the HIV virus that they should not be that difficult but it can be a very simple task.

Haynes and other researchers revealed that the antibody CH103 verifies a lot less HIV virus mutations than other neutralizing antibodies like those in the class VRCO1.  The complexity of CH103 is lower that the antibodies reported prior but Hayne’s team is hopeful that this discovery will allow simpler synthesis of vaccines.

The examination of the antibody and the virus showed that they co-evolved and there was detection of ancestral forms of antibodies, the germline precursor which are produced by the immune cells called B cells that undergo maturation to become neutralizing antibodies.  Immunogens which are vaccine proteins which could trigger the body to evolve neutralizing antibodies like CH103.

Another researcher called Schief and his team documented a discovery on the 28th of March of teh immunogen that binds to VCR01 neutralizing antibodies. The next task that the researchers had was to be able to locate immunogens which are capable of recognizing many different VRC01 germline precursors and also stimulate the rupture of viral diversity which maybe necessary to cause the maturation process.  It can be said that despite there being some evidence that there is a possible cure for HIV being synthesized it is light years away from being functional. 

Co-Evolution Of The Neutralizing Antibody CH103:

Image

 

The Structure Of VCR01: 

Image

 

REFERENCES:

Works Cited

 

Hayden, Erika Check. Nature: International Weekly Journal Of Science . April 3rd, 2013. http://www.nature.com/news/researchers-see-antibody-evolve-against-hiv-1.12720 (accessed April 13th, 2013).

Cholesterol is a waxy substance produced by the liver and can be obtained by the consumption of certain foods.  Cholesterol is needed to synthesize vitamin D and some hormones, construction of cell walls and the creation of bile salts that aid in the digestion of fats.  The chemical structure of cholesterol is:

Image

 

The synthesis of cholesterol occurs in the liver by the process: 

Image

 

Vast amounts of cholesterol in the body can contribute to serious problems in the body like heart disease. In a study performed by Stanley Hazen, the head of cardiovascular medicine at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio and Daniel Radar, director of preventative cardiovascular medicine at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia showed that lean steak which is low in fat and cholesterol but high in protein, if eaten in large quantities can cause heart disease.  It was determined by the researchers that due to bacteria in the gut of humans that aid in the conversion of the nutrient in beef into a compound that enables an increase in the build up of plaque in the arteries.

In a study conducted, it was indicated that an individual’s collection of intestinal microbes maybe as important to the diet as anything else.  It was determined that consumption of red meat can increase the risk of death by heart disease, even when controlling the levels of fat and cholesterol. In order to investigate why individuals die from heart disease due to the consumption of red meat and other food stuff, the nutrient l-carnitine which is found in red meat and other dairy products. The test showed that when l-carnitine is consumed there is an increase in blood levels of trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO) which is a compound that can alter the metabolism of cholesterol and slow the removal of cholesterol that accumulates on the walls of arteries. Also fecal studies were done which showed that a regular diet of meat probably encourages the growth of bacteria that can convert l-carnitine into TMAO.  Carnitine is a substance that aids the body in the conversion of fats into energy. Carnitine has also been proposed as a treatment for many conditions becauses due to its properties as an antioxidant.  The structure of l-carnitine is: 

Image

 

The levels of l-carnitine in the blood of candidates having elective heart check-ups showed that by it, the nutrient didn’t seem to cause any problems of concern but however persons with high levels of l-carnitine and TMAO were prime candidates to for heart disease.  The studies done on mice proved the original hypothesis that the risk of developing arterial plaques increased when the gut bacteria were present but when the animals were treated with gut- clearing antibodies, l-carnitine in the diet did not encourage plaques. Therefore it can be concluded that the cause of arterial plaque is due to the presence of l-carnitine and TMAO, not just the l-carnitine bacteria alone. 

REFERENCES:

Bibliography

 

—. Carnitine (L-Carnitine). 2011. http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/carnitine-l-000291.htm (accessed April 13th, 2013).

 

—. “What is Cholesterol?” TeensHealth. January 1st, 2012. http://kidshealth.org/teen/food_fitness/nutrition/cholesterol.html# (accessed April 13th, 2013).

Woolston, Chris. “Red Meat May Clog Arteries Beacause of Gut Bacteria .” Scientific American . April 7th, 2013. http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=red-meat-clogs-arteries-bacteria (accessed April 13th, 2013).