The Mechanism of Zika Virus Infection Including the Role of Nonstructural Proteins in the Pathogenesis of Microcephaly and Guillain-Barre Syndrome

Heather Villarreal Introduction. Zika virus (ZIKV) is a growing epidemic affecting several countries, whose effects include severe neurological damage such as Guillain-Barre syndrome and microcephaly. The virus infects peripheral dendritic tissue and transports axonally to neurons, especially neuroprogenitor cells, where it causes down-regulation of growth and development genes, apoptosis, and overall atrophy of developing neural […]

The gut microbiome mediates obesity through complex interactions with short chain fatty acids (SCFAs)

Danfeng Lisa Wang  Introduction. Obesity is a major risk factor contributing to the worldwide burden of disease1. Recent studies show gut microbial composition differs between lean and obese phenotypes in mice and humans. Lean phenotypes tend to have a greater proportion of Bacteroidetes bacteria, while obese phenotypes tend to have a greater proportion of Firmicutes […]

Bacteriophage as an Antimicrobial against Pseudomonas aeruginosa in Burn Patients

Kendall Turner Introduction Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a gram negative bacterium and opportunistic human pathogen with intrinsic antibiotic resistance capabilities and adaptive mechanisms.1 The organism has the third highest incident rate of nosocomial infections in burn patients, composing 9.00 to 18.30% of burn infections.2 Furthermore, P. aeruginosa is a major cause of skin graft loss in […]

Disruption of the host deubiquitinating enzyme, USP14, as a novel therapeutic strategy to combat Listeria monocytogenes infection

Kevin M. Claunch  Introduction. The Unfolded Protein Response (UPR) is a critical homeostatic pathway in mammalian cells that is triggered by ER dysfunction and subsequent accumulation of misfolded and damaged proteins[1,7]. Activation of the UPR is achieved through three transmembrane proteins, one of which is IRE-1, which catalyzes the splicing of X-box binding protein-1 (Xbp-1), […]

Mechanism of neutralization associated with the E protein of Zika Virus: EDE1 antibodies and LALA variants

Hadley Young  Introduction. Zika Virus (ZIKV) is a flavivirus spread by Aedes mosquitoes and transmitted sexually and trans-placentally.3 First discovered in 1947 in Uganda, the recent ZIKV epidemic began in Brazil in 2015.3 Beyond flu-like symptoms, ZIKV has been linked to microcephaly and Guillian-Barre’ syndrome.1 Treatment is presently supportive and preventative, but current research is […]

The Role of the Gut Microbiota and Host Metabolism

Callan Young Introduction. Obesity is known as being caused by an imbalance between energy consumption and expenditure. Many scientists, researchers and physicians note that obesity is also linked to genetics, environmental factors, gender, age and socioeconomic status, among others. Recently, research has proved that the human microbiome also provides a major contribution to the development […]

Gastrointestinal Microbiome and Autism Spectrum Disorder: The influence of Microbiome Metabolites on the Gut-Brain Axis

Christine Wilson  Introduction: Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) are a group of complex neurobiological disorders that are characterized by social and communication impairment, and fixed, repetitive, and stereotyped patterns of behavior, interests, and activities1. There is a prominent subgroup of individuals with ASD that suffer from gastrointestinal dysfunction3. Many studies have concluded that individuals with ASD […]

The Possible Role of TAM Receptor AXL in the Mechanism of Nervous System Damage by Zika Virus

John Williams  Introduction: Study of the outbreak of Zika in Brazil in 2015 showed that the prevalence of microcephaly increased from 0.6 per 10,000 live births in states without confirmed Zika cases to 2.8 per 10,000 live births in states with confirmed cases.[1] These epidemiological data were confirmed in the laboratory when immature neuroblastoma cells […]

Transcription Activator-Like Effector Nucleases (TALENs) as a Novel Strategy for Treating HIV Latency

Emma Welch Introduction: HIV continues to be a major public health issue in the United States. In 2015, there were 39,513 new case of HIV diagnosed in the US, with African American MSM being disproportionately affected.[1] HIV, which infects and kills CD4 cells, weakens the immune system over time, making patients susceptible to opportunistic infections […]