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OBJECTIVES/SPECIFIC AIMS: Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA) has a dismal 5-year survival rate of 9%, making this disease one of the deadliest human malignancies (https://seer.cancer.gov/). Primary barriers to the treatment of pancreatic cancer include extensive stromal interactions and sustained immune suppression. Aberrant Hedgehog (HH) pathway activity is a hallmark of pancreatic tumorigenesis. Tumor-derived HH ligands signal in a paracrine fashion to the surrounding stroma to influence tumor growth. Expression of HH ligands increases during PDA progression, and previous work has shown that genetic deletion of Sonic HH (Shh) from the epithelium of mice with pancreatic tumors results in increased Indian HH (Ihh) expression. This research aims to investigate the translational impact of changes in immune infiltration following deletion of IHH in a preclinical mouse model of pancreatic cancer. METHODS/STUDY POPULATION: Ihh was deleted in tumor cells lines (IhhKO) derived from a genetically engineered mouse model of pancreatic cancer (LSL-KrasG12D/+;LSL-TrpR270H;P48-Cre), using CRISPR/Cas-9 gene editing to assess the role of Ihh in the tumor microenvironment. The level of HH signaling was determined using tumor cell co-cultures with Gli1lacZ fibroblasts (derived from mice with a lacZ reporter allele knocked into the Gli1 locus), in which Beta Galactosidase activity serves as a readout for HH signaling. WT and IhhKO tumor cells were orthotopically transplanted into the pancreas of syngeneic C57BL/6 mice. Human pancreas samples were obtained from surgical resection of pancreatic adenocarcinoma, or fine needle biopsy procedure (FNB). Immune profiling of mouse and human pancreatic tumors was performed using Cytometry Time-of-Flight analysis (CyTOF), and tumor composition was analyzed by single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA seq). In vitro cultures with pancreatic fibroblasts treated with either WT or IhhKO tumor cell conditioned media (CM) were cultured with bone-marrow derived macrophages to assess tumor crosstalk. RESULTS/ANTICIPATED RESULTS: Tumor cells lacking Ihh were generated through CRISPR/Cas-9 deletion, and this was confirmed by qRT-PCR. Co-culture of IhhKO tumor cells with Gli1lacZ fibroblasts results in decreased Gli1 expression both in vitro and in vivo. Immune profiling revealed that tumors lacking Ihh have significantly fewer tumor associated macrophages (CD11b+/F4/80+/CD206+), resulting in decreased presence of immunosuppressive factors such as arginase 1 and PDL1. Immune phenotyping of human pancreatic tissues revealed similar populations of immunosuppressive myeloid cells present in tumors. In vitro co-cultures demonstrated that, in the presence of bone-marrow derived macrophages, immunosuppressive IL-6 production was reduced in pancreatic fibroblasts cultured with IhhKO-CM, as compared to fibroblasts cultured with WT-CM, providing mechanistic insight into the in vivo phenotype observed. Further, scRNA seq analysis suggests that modulation of HH signaling in the tumor microenvironment alters chemokine and immunomodulatory signaling pathways driven by fibroblasts in the pancreatic tumor microenvironment. DISCUSSION/SIGNIFICANCE OF IMPACT: HH signaling in pancreatic fibroblasts contributes to the establishment of an immune suppressive environment in pancreatic cancer. Combining methods to target HH signaling and immune checkpoint therapy has translational potential in treating pancreatic cancer patients.
In an effort to optimize patient outcomes, considerable attention is being devoted to identifying patient characteristics associated with major depressive disorder (MDD) and its responsiveness to treatment. In the current study, we extend this work by evaluating whether early change in these sensitivities is associated with response to antidepressant treatment for MDD.
Participants included 210 patients with MDD who were treated with 8 weeks of escitalopram and 112 healthy comparison participants. Of the original 210 patients, 90 non-responders received adjunctive aripiprazole for an additional 8 weeks. Symptoms of depression and anhedonia were assessed at the beginning of treatment and 8 weeks later in both samples. Reward and punishment sensitivity were assessed using the BIS/BAS scales measured at the initiation of treatment and 2 weeks later.
Individuals with MDD exhibited higher punishment sensitivity and lower reward sensitivity compared with healthy comparison participants. Change in reward sensitivity during the first 2 weeks of treatment was associated with improved depressive symptoms and anhedonia following 8 weeks of treatment with escitalopram. Similarly, improvement in reward responsiveness during the first 2 weeks of adjunctive therapy with aripiprazole was associated with fewer symptoms of depression at post-treatment.
Findings highlight the predictive utility of early change in reward sensitivity during antidepressant treatment for major depression. In a clinical setting, a lack of change in early reward processing may signal a need to modify a patient's treatment plan with alternative or augmented treatment approaches.
From climate change to species extinction, humanity is confronted with an increasing array of societal and environmental challenges that defy simple quantifiable solutions. Complexity-based ecology provides a new paradigm for ecologists and conservationists keen to embrace the uncertainty that is pressed upon us. This book presents key research papers chosen by some sixty scholars from various continents, across a diverse span of sub-disciplines. The papers are set alongside first person commentary from many of the seminal voices involved, offering unprecedented access to experts' viewpoints. The works assembled also shed light on the process of science in general, showing how the shifting of wider perspectives allows for new ideas to take hold. Ideal for undergraduate and advanced students of ecology and conservation, their educators and those working across allied fields, this is the first book of its kind to focus on complexity-based approaches and provides a benchmark for future collected volumes.