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Breast cancer is the most common malignancy in women. Basic and translational breast cancer research relies heavily on experimental animal models. Ideally, such models for breast cancer should have commonality with human breast cancer in terms of tumor etiology, biological behavior, pathology, and response to therapeutics. This review introduces current progress in different breast cancer experimental animal models and analyzes their characteristics, advantages, disadvantages, and potential applications. Finally, we propose future research directions for breast cancer animal models.
With population around 4 000 individuals, the Kalash people are living in Hindu Kush mountain valleys of present day Northern Pakistan for centuries. Specially due to their mysterious origination and fairer European complexion, the genetic history of this ethnic group had been investigated by different markers. However, to date the maternal genetic architecture had not been systematically dissected based on high-resolution complete mitogenomes, making their maternal genetic history, especially their genetic connection with the Europeans from the matrilineal perspective unclear. To unravel this issue, we analyzed mitogenome data of 34 Kalash samples together with 6 102 individuals from across Eurasia. Our results indicate exclusive western Eurasian origin of Kalash represented by 8 haplogroups, among which haplogroups J2b1a7a and R0a5a (make ~50% of the Kalash gene pool) display in situ differentiations in the Kalashes and further can be traced back to the Mediterranean region. Age estimations suggested these haplogroups arise in Kalash population during ~2.26 and 3.01 thousand years ago, a time frame consistent with Alexander III of Macedon invasion to the region. One possible explanation of this maternal genetic contribution from the Europeans to the Kalash would be the involvement of women in foreign campaigns of ancient Greek warfare, followed by a founder effect. Our study thus shed important light on genetic origin of Kalash community of Pakistan.
Aging is an essential factor affecting metabolic activities and disease resistance. The macaques have been used as a model species for primate evolutionary and biomedical studies. To study the gene expression in the Macaca thibetana (TM) and to clarify its differences to humans, we applied RNA-Seq to determine blood transcriptomes from 24 TMs. A total of 2,523 age-related differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were identified, and two significant age-related gene modules were identified by co-expression analysis. Some age-related pathways, such as the FoxO signaling pathway was significantly enriched by up-regulated DEGs and positively age-related core genes. There were shared 279 common DEGs, including 111 up-regulated, 141 down-regulated and 27 DEGs with different directions between TMs and humans. Our study suggests that aging is a critical factor affecting gene expression in TMs. The findings of the similarity and difference of gene expression profiles between TMs and humans could provide new insights into primate evolution and benefit the biomedical research about TM.
We record Theloderma pyaukkya for the first time in China based on one specimen collected from western Yunnan. Morphologically, the individual from Yunnan agrees well with the original description of T. pyaukkya and phylogenetically, it clustered together with type specimens including holotype of T. pyaukkya from Kachin State (northern Myanmar) with strong support. The taxonomic status of T. pyaukkya from Chin State (western Myanmar) needs further examination. In addition, we record Theloderma moloch in Yunnan for the first time. Thus, there have been seven Theloderma species recorded in Yunnan, China, namely Theloderma albopunctatum, T. baibungense, T. bicolor, T. gordoni, T. moloch, T. pyaukkya, and T. rhododiscus.