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Journal Cover Biomedical Journal
  [SJR: 0.793]   [H-I: 10]   [3 followers]  Follow
    
  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
   ISSN (Print) 2319-4170 - ISSN (Online) 2320-2890
   Published by Elsevier Homepage  [3039 journals]
  • Nasal gouty tophus: Report a rare case presenting as a nasal hump with
           nasal obstruction

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 20 September 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): John Chung-Han Wu, Pang-Yun Chou, Chih-Hao Chen
      Dorsal nasal gouty tophus are rare occurrences with limited documentation. Here we report a male patient who has a history of poorly controlled gouty arthritis. He had nasal obstruction with an enlarging mass over his left nasal ridge for the past three years. Image studies revealed a nasal bone defect underneath the nasal lesion. The firm mass was excised and confirmed to be of gouty origin. The nasal bone defect was repaired with a titanium mesh plate to prevent nasal depression. He has fully recovered with no more nasal obstruction or recurrence of nasal tophus. The case report illustrates a common illness, gout, with a rare clinical manifestation leading to a common symptom, nasal obstruction. It demonstrates the importance of a detailed history, a thorough physical examination and most important of all, an extensive differential diagnosis in our clinical practice.

      PubDate: 2016-09-24T10:05:07Z
       
  • Brain-derived neurotrophic factor protein and mRNA levels in patients with
           bipolar mania – A preliminary study

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 20 September 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Chin-Chuen Lin, Chien-Te Lee, Ya-Ting Lo, Tiao-Lai Huang
      Background Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) protein or mRNA levels may be involved in the pathophysiology of bipolar disorder. However, the results were inconsistent. We aimed to simultaneously investigate the relationship of BDNF protein and mRNA levels in peripheral blood of patients with bipolar mania. Methods Patients with bipolar mania (n = 30) and healthy controls (n = 30) were recruited during our one-year study. Psychiatric diagnoses were made according to Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th Edition criteria. The scores of the Young Mania Rating Scale (YMRS) of patients with bipolar mania were greater than 26. All participants had peripheral blood drawn to analyze the serum BDNF protein and mRNA levels. Results Using t-test, patients with bipolar mania had a lower BDNF protein and mRNA levels than did the healthy controls (p < 0.001 and 0.049, respectively), however, the statistical significances were lost after analysis of co-variance adjusted for age and body mass index. Twenty seven out of 30 patients with bipolar mania remained in the study after the 4 weeks of mood stabilizer treatment. Patients' BDNF protein and mRNA levels did not change significantly after 4-week treatment. Conclusions Our study found that serum BDNF protein and mRNA levels in patients with bipolar mania were lower than healthy controls, but a larger sample size will be needed to confirm this finding.

      PubDate: 2016-09-24T10:05:07Z
       
  • Purinergic signaling and infection by Leishmania: A new approach to
           evasion of the immune response

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 21 September 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Amanda Braga de Figueiredo, Miriam Conceicao Souza-Testasicca, Luis Carlos Crocco Afonso
      Infection by protozoan parasites is part of the most common Tropical Neglected Diseases. In the case of leishmaniasis, several millions of people are at risk of contracting the disease. In spite of innumerous studies that elucidated the immune response capable of killing the parasite, the understanding of the evasion mechanisms utilized by the parasite to survive within the very cell responsible for its destruction is still incomplete. In this review, we offer a new approach to the control of the immune response against the parasite. The ability of the parasite to modulate the levels of extracellular ATP and adenosine either by directly acting on the levels of these molecules or by inducing the expression of CD39 and CD73 on the infected cell may influence the magnitude of the immune response against the parasite contributing to its growth and survival.

      PubDate: 2016-09-24T10:05:07Z
       
  • Trichomoniasis immunity and the involvement of the purinergic signaling

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 21 September 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Camila Braz Menezes, Tiana Tasca
      Innate and adaptive immunity play a significant role in trichomoniasis, the most common non-viral sexually transmitted disease worldwide. In the urogenital tract, innate immunity is accomplished by a defense physical barrier constituted by epithelial cells, mucus, and acidic pH. During infection, immune cells, antimicrobial peptides, cytokines, chemokines, and adaptive immunity evolve in the reproductive tract, and a proinflammatory response is generated to eliminate the invading extracellular pathogen Trichomonas vaginalis. However, the parasite has developed complex evolutionary mechanisms to evade the host immune response through cysteine proteases, phenotypic variation, and molecular mimicry. The purinergic system constitutes a signaling cellular net where nucleotides and nucleosides, enzymes, purinoceptors and transporters are involved in almost all cells and tissues signaling pathways, especially in central and autonomic nervous systems, endocrine, respiratory, cardiac, reproductive, and immune systems, during physiological as well as pathological processes. The involvement of the purinergic system in T. vaginalis biology and infection has been demonstrated and this review highlights the participation of this signaling pathway in the parasite immune evasion strategies.

      PubDate: 2016-09-24T10:05:07Z
       
  • Purinergic signaling during Porphyromonas gingivalis infection

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 24 September 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Cássio Luiz Coutinho Almeida-da-Silva, Ana Carolina Morandini, Henning Ulrich, David M. Ojcius, Robson Coutinho-Silva
      Despite recent advances unraveling mechanisms of host–pathogen interactions in innate immunity, the participation of purinergic signaling in infection-driven inflammation remains an emerging research field with many unanswered questions. As one of the most-studied oral pathogens, Porphyromonas gingivalis is considered as a keystone pathogen with a central role in development of periodontal disease. This pathogen needs to evade immune-mediated defense mechanisms and tolerate inflammation in order to survive in the host. In this review, we summarize evidence showing that purinergic signaling modulates P. gingivalis survival and cellular immune responses, and discuss the role played by inflammasome activation and cell death during P. gingivalis infection.

      PubDate: 2016-09-24T10:05:07Z
       
  • A pilot study on Trichomonas vaginalis in women with recurrent urinary
           tract infections

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 16 September 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Po-Chih Chang, Yu-Chao Hsu, Ming-Li Hsieh, Shih-Tsung Huang, Hsin-Chieh Huang, Yu Chen
      Background Trichomoniasis and recurrent urinary tract infections (UTIs) shared similar risk factors, age distribution and overlapping symptoms. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of Trichomonas vaginalis (TV) in women with recurrent UTIs, attending a urology clinic in a medical center, in order to inform screening and treatment policies. Methods Women with recurrent UTIs, defined as the presence of lower urinary tract symptoms (dysuria, frequency and urgency) and three positive urine cultures on voided urine specimens in the previous year, were enrolled prospectively from January 2013 to April 2014. Urine samples were collected for culture and tested for TV using immunochromatographic strip. Outpatient follow-up was arranged to diagnose any symptomatic UTI recurrence. Results Sixty-five women were recruited. Mean age was 57.4 ± 14.3 year-old and follow-up duration was 9.5 ± 4.0 months. The prevalence of TV was 16.9% (11/65). Eight women had UTI recurrence in the follow-up period. Recurrence rate did not differ in patients with and without concomitant TV infection. Conclusions Given the high prevalence of TV, we suggest that testing for TV should be considered in women with recurrent UTIs. Further larger studies are needed to evaluate the potential benefit of treating TV in this group of patients.

      PubDate: 2016-09-19T18:52:37Z
       
  • A study of temporomandibular joint osteoarthritis using computed
           tomographic imaging

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 30 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): F. Massilla Mani, S. Satha Sivasubramanian
      Background This study aimed to determine the various bony changes in osteoarthritis (OA) of elderly patients who are suffering from temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMD) and to find if all the changes manifesting in generalized OA were presented in temporomandibular joint (TMJ). Methods Thirty TMJs of fifteen elderly patients who were diagnosed with TMD were selected for the study. Patient with TMD were subjected to computerized tomographic (CT) imaging, and the various bony changes in the TMJ were recorded. Results CT study of TMJ showed that there is a positive evidence of joint involvement in 80% of the cases. In this study, female patients were more commonly affected by OA than the males. The condylar changes (69.93%) are more common than the changes in the articular eminence (6.6%) and condylar fossa (10%). About 56.6% of TMJ in the study was affected by the early manifestations of the OA. Conclusion CT study showed that there is a positive evidence of TMJ involvement in the elderly patients with TMD. The results show that condylar changes are more common than the changes in the articular eminence and condylar fossa. The study also shows that most of the patients are affected by early TMJ OA; hence, initiating treatment at early stages may prevent the disease progression.

      PubDate: 2016-09-03T11:15:59Z
       
  • On the road to epigenetic therapy

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 30 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Emma L. Walton
      In this issue of the Biomedical Journal, we examine how far the explosion of epigenetic studies in recent years has translated to benefits for patients in the clinic, and we highlight an original study suggesting that increased vegetable intake protects against osteoporotic fractures. We also hear several opinions on the use, or perhaps misuse, of Impact Factor and what the future should hold for this publication metric.

      PubDate: 2016-09-03T11:15:59Z
       
  • Alternative functions for the multifarious inflammasome

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 23 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Jan Martel, Hsin-Chih Lai, Yun-Fei Ko, John D. Young, David M. Ojcius
      The inflammasome has been mainly studied in innate immune cells in which it senses microbes and cellular damage, and induces secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines. This process induces an inflammatory response that is critical for the resolution of infections and repair of tissue damage following injury. Recent studies indicate that inflammasome complex formation also participates in many other cellular and physiological processes beyond modulation of inflammation, such as autophagy, metabolism, eicosanoids production, and phagosome maturation.

      PubDate: 2016-08-24T00:12:27Z
       
  • Journal impact factor – Handle with care

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Tanuj Kanchan, Kewal Krishan


      PubDate: 2016-08-19T11:17:31Z
       
  • Low vegetable intake increases the risk of fall-related fragility fracture
           in postmenopausal Taiwanese women, a prospective pilot study in the
           community

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Chu-Hsu Lin, Kai-Hua Chen, Chien-Min Chen, Chia-Hao Chang, Tung-Jung Huang, Hung-Chih Hsu, Shih-Yang Huang
      Background The aim of this prospective study was to investigate the relationship between lifestyle factors including nutrition intake and the incidence of fall-related fragility fractures in postmenopausal women. Methods A total of 1169 female volunteers were recruited from participants at the morning health examinations held at each local public health center in the West Chiayi County of Taiwan at the beginning of the study. Laboratory examinations, anthropometric measurements, and questionnaire interviews inquiring about lifestyle factors, including weekly nutrition intake, were performed. Subsequently, four follow-up telephone interviews at intervals of about 6–12 months were performed to inquire about instances of falls and fractures. Results Nine hundred and fifty-three subjects responded at least once to the four telephone interviews, and there were 183 postmenopausal women, with a mean age of 68.8 ± 8.3 (49–87) years, reporting falls. Of the 183 women, 25 had incurred new fractures from low-energy impacts. Statistical analysis revealed that older age and hypertension were associated with increased risks of falling. Intake of other deep-colored (nondark-green) vegetables and light-colored vegetables as well as total vegetable intake were associated with reduced risk of fall-related fragility fracture. Conclusion Among postmenopausal women, older age and the presence of hypertension were associated with increased risks of falls. Increased vegetable intake might be helpful to reduce the incidence of fall-related fragility fractures.

      PubDate: 2016-08-14T06:32:35Z
       
  • A 2-year retrospective study of pediatric dental emergency visits at a
           hospital emergency center in Taiwan

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Chia-Pei Jung, Aileen I. Tsai, Ching-Ming Chen
      Background There is a paucity of information regarding pediatric dental emergencies in Taiwan. This study investigates the prevalence and characteristics of the pediatric dental emergency services provided at a medical center. Methods This study included a retrospective chart review of patients under 18 years of age with dental complaints who visited the Emergency Department (ED) of Linkou Medical Center of Chang Gung Memorial Hospital from January 2012 to December 2013. Information regarding age, gender, time/day/month of presentation, diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up was collected and analyzed. Statistical analysis included descriptive statistics and Pearson's Chi-square test with the significance level set as p < 0.05. Results This study revealed that dental emergencies in the medical center ED were predominantly related to orodental trauma (47.1%) and pulpal pain (29.9%). Most patients were male (p < 0.001) and <5 years of age (p < 0.001). The most frequent orodental trauma was luxation, both in primary and permanent dentition. The major management for dental emergencies was prescribing medication for pulp-related problems and orodental trauma. The follow-up rate of orodental trauma was the highest (p < 0.001). Conclusions For children, trauma and toothache constituted the most common reasons for dental emergency visits at a hospital emergency center in Taiwan. While dental emergencies are sometimes unforeseeable or unavoidable, developing community awareness about proper at-home care as well as regular dental preventive measures can potentially reduce the number of emergency visits.

      PubDate: 2016-08-14T06:32:35Z
       
  • Journal impact factor

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Vagish Kumar L. Shanbhag


      PubDate: 2016-08-14T06:32:35Z
       
  • Spectrum of neurosurgeon's role in epilepsy surgery

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Eun-ik Son, Ji-Eun Kim
      It is well known that there is high quality evidence of epilepsy surgery as an effective and safe option for patients with drug refractory epilepsy by advanced imaging technology and computerized electrophysiological facilities during recent three decades. However, it still remains debate regarding necessities of epilepsy surgery in terms of less satisfactory surgical outcome, especially in non-lesional neocortical epilepsies. This review is for the role of epileptic neurosurgeon rather than the role of epilepsy surgery, namely, the necessity of neurosurgeon's positive participation starting from the first visit of epilepsy patients followed by pertaining process by stages and its degree of contribution. All experienced epilepsy centers also need innovative or challenging trial absolutely through this kind of standpoint, because all of the present protocols and techniques are coming from the past. In any event, the interdepartmental and interpersonal cooperation is inevitable especially for improving patient's quality of life. Serious neurosurgical considerations are needed for patients with intractable epilepsies, especially in referred cases from other center for the purpose of double check, and incongruent cases with contrary opinions by epileptologist.

      PubDate: 2016-08-14T06:32:35Z
       
  • Great expectations – Epigenetics and the meandering path from bench
           to bedside

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 10 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Sophia J. Häfner, Anders H. Lund
      Making quick promises of major biomedical breakthroughs based on exciting discoveries at the bench is tempting. But the meandering path from fundamental science to life-saving clinical applications can be fraught with many hurdles. Epigenetics, the study of potentially heritable changes of gene function without modification of the underlying DNA sequence, has dominated the biological research field during the last decade and encountered a large public success. Driven by the unfolding of molecular biology and recent technological progress, the term has evolved significantly and shifted from a conceptual framework to a mechanistic understanding. This shift was accompanied by much hype and raised high hopes that epigenetics might hold both the key to deciphering the molecular underpinning of complex, non-Mendelian diseases and offer novel therapeutic approaches for a large panel of pathologies. However, while exciting reports of biological phenomena involving DNA methylation and histone modifications fill up the scientific literature, the realistic clinical applications of epigenetic medicines remain somewhat blurry. Here, we discuss the state of the art and speculate how epigenetics might contribute to prognostic and therapy approaches in the future.

      PubDate: 2016-08-14T06:32:35Z
       
  • Impact factor impacting our scientific research – Probable solutions

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Jagadish Rao Padubidri, B. Suresh Kumar Shetty


      PubDate: 2016-08-14T06:32:35Z
       
  • Psychobiotics: An emerging probiotic in psychiatric practice

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Arunava Kali
      Intestinal microbial flora plays critical role in maintenance of health. Probiotic organisms have been recognized as an essential therapeutic component in the treatment of intestinal dysbiosis. Current research suggests their health benefits extends beyond intestinal disorders. The neuroactive molecules produced by the gut microbiota has been found to modulate neural signals which affect neurological and psychiatric parameters like sleep, appetite, mood and cognition. Use of these novel probiotics opens up the possibility of restructuring of intestinal microbiota for effective management of various psychiatric disorders.

      PubDate: 2016-08-14T06:32:35Z
       
  • A clinical score to predict dose reductions of antidiabetes medications
           with intentional weight loss: A retrospective cohort study

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Ghanshyam Palamaner Subash Shantha, Anita Ashok Kumar, Vimal Ravi, Rohit C. Khanna, Scott Kahan, Lawrence J. Cheskin
      Background We assessed the predictive accuracy of an empirically-derived score (weight loss, insulin resistance, and glycemic control: “WIG”) to predict patients who will be successful in reducing diabetes mellitus (DM) medication use with weight loss. Methods Case records of 121 overweight and obese patients with DM at two outpatient weight management centers were analyzed. Results Mean period of follow-up was 12.5 ± 3.5 months. To derive the “WIG” scoring algorithm, one point each was assigned to “W” (loss of 5% of initial body weight within the first 3 months of attempting weight loss), “I” (triglyceride [TGL]/highdensity lipoprotein ratio >3 [marker of insulin resistance] at baseline), and “G” (glycosylated hemoglobin [A1c%] >8.5 at baseline). WIG score showed moderate accuracy in discriminating anti-DM dose reductions at baseline, and after 3 months of weight loss efforts (likelihood ratios [LR] + >1, LR− <1, and area under the curve >0.7), and demonstrated good reproducibility. Conclusions WIG score shows promise as a tool to predict success with dose reductions of antidiabetes medications.

      PubDate: 2016-08-14T06:32:35Z
       
  • Incidence and risk factors of poststroke depression in patients with acute
           ischemic stroke: A 1-year prospective study in Taiwan

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 4 August 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Ching-Shu Tsai, Chen-Long Wu, Tai-Hsin Hung, Shih-Yong Chou, Jian-An Su
      Background Poststroke depression (PSD) is one of the most frequent and devastating neuropsychiatric consequences of stroke. The purpose of this study was to investigate the incidence and risk factors for PSD in a general hospital in Taiwan. Methods One hundred and one patients with ischemic stroke were enrolled initially, and 91 (90.1%) completed the 1-year study. Assessments were performed at baseline, and at the 1st, 3rd, 6th, 9th, and 12th month after enrolment. The definition of PSD was in accordance with the diagnostic criteria of major depressive episode in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, fourth edition (DSM-IV). Results The accumulated incidence rates of PSD at the 1st, 3rd, 6th, and 9th, month were 4%, 8%, 9%, and 10%, respectively, and the overall incidence at 1 year was 11%. In multivariate regression analysis, female gender, higher depression score, and severity of stroke were significant risk factors. In subgroup analysis, a higher depression score was significantly associated with PSD, regardless of gender; however, stroke severity was a risk factor only in the female group. Conclusion The 1-year incidence of PSD was 11%, based on the DSM-IV diagnostic criteria. More attention should be paid to patients with more risk factors to enable earlier detection and intervention.

      PubDate: 2016-08-09T03:14:13Z
       
  • Esophageal mucormycosis in an immunocompetent child: A rare presentation

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 20 June 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Jenna Blah Bhattacharya, Seema Kaushal, Satish Kumar Aggarwal
      Invasive mucormycosis of the esophagus (rare) and gastrointestinal tract is emerging as an important cause of concern in children. It usually affects immunosuppressed individuals. However, infection of immunocompetent children is also seen. The diagnosis of mucormycosis is difficult both at the clinical and the laboratory level, hence leading to unsatisfactory treatment and high mortality rates. The infection is usually life threatening so an early diagnosis and prompt administration of antifungal therapy is imperative.

      PubDate: 2016-06-23T21:06:55Z
       
  • Clinical applications of spectral domain optical coherence tomography in
           retinal diseases

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 20 June 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): R.K. Murthy, Shamim Haji, Kumar Sambhav, Sandeep Grover, K.V. Chalam
      Optical coherence tomography (OCT) was introduced about two decades ago and has revolutionized ophthalmic practice in recent years. It is a noninvasive noncontact imaging modality that provides a high-resolution cross-sectional image of the cornea, retina, choroid and optic nerve head, analogous to that of the histological section. Advances in OCT technology in signal detection technique from time-domain (TD) to spectral-domain (SD) detection have given us the potential to study various retinal layers more precisely and in less time. SD-OCT better delineates structural changes and fine lesions in the individual retinal layers. Thus, we have gained substantial information about the pathologic and structural changes in ocular conditions with primary or secondary retinal involvement. This review we discuss the clinical application of currently available SD-OCT in various retinal pathologies. Furthermore, highlights the benefits of SD-OCT over TD. With the introduction of enhanced depth imaging and swept – source OCT visualization of the choroid and choriocapillaris has become possible. Therefore, OCT has become an indispensable ancillary test in the diagnosis and management of diseases involving the retina and/or the choroid. As OCT technology continues to develop further it will provide new insights into the retinal and choroidal structure and the pathogenesis of posterior segment of the eye.

      PubDate: 2016-06-23T21:06:55Z
       
  • A comparison between the effects of propofol–fentanyl with
           propofol–ketamine for sedation in patients undergoing endoscopic
           retrograde cholangiopancreatography outside the operating room

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 21 June 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Reza Akhondzadeh, Ali Ghomeishi, Sholeh Nesioonpour, Sanaz Nourizade
      Background The efficient and secure techniques of anesthesia and sedation have always been needed for. One of these procedures is endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP), due to its painfulness and long duration, has high sensitivity. We compare the effects of propofol–fentanyl (PF) with propofol–ketamine (PK) to sedate patients undergoing ERCP. Methods In this clinical trial, patients were divided into two groups of 49 people. A group received a pharmaceutical combination of PK, and another group received a pharmaceutical combination of PF. Vital signs of patients, Ramsey Sedation Score, and pain of patients were assessed. The total dosage of used propofol was also recorded. Results There was no significant difference seen in the patients' hemodynamic characteristics in both groups. Pain at the end of surgery and an hour after it in the PK group was less that was not statistically significant. By Ramsey Sedation Score also significant differences were not seen between groups (p = 0.68). By using total dose of propofol used also a significant difference was not observed between the two groups (p = 0.36). Rate of apnea in PK group was 32% and in the PF group was 63%, which this difference was statistically significant (p < 0.05). Conclusion A comparison between the two drugs combination shows that although in terms of hemodynamic and sedation criteria both groups were similar, but because of the lower amount of pain and apnea in the PK group, this combination may generally in the ERCP procedure is more efficient and safer.

      PubDate: 2016-06-23T21:06:55Z
       
  • Metabolic, autophagic, and mitophagic activities in cancer initiation and
           progression

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 8 June 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Anita Hjelmeland, Jianhua Zhang
      Cancer is a complex disease marked by uncontrolled cell growth and invasion. These processes are driven by the accumulation of genetic and epigenetic alterations that promote cancer initiation and progression. Contributing to genome changes are the regulation of oxidative stress and reactive species-induced damage to molecules and organelles. Redox regulation, metabolic plasticity, autophagy, and mitophagy play important and interactive roles in cancer hallmarks including sustained proliferation, activated invasion, and replicative immortality. However, the impact of these processes can differ depending on the signaling pathways altered in cancer, tumor type, tumor stage, and/or the differentiation state. Here, we highlight some of the representative studies on the impact of oxidative and nitrosative activities, mitochondrial bioenergetics, metabolism, and autophagy and mitophagy in the context of tumorigenesis. We discuss the implications of these processes for cellular activities in cancer for anti-cancer-based therapeutics.

      PubDate: 2016-06-14T16:21:04Z
       
  • The dual role of ROS, antioxidants and autophagy in cancer

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 8 June 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Emma Louise Walton
      In this issue of the Biomedical Journal, we highlight a review revealing that the effect of autophagy, reactive oxygen species, and antioxidants in cancer may be a question of timing and context. We also discuss original research showing that the prevalence of cleft lip with or without palate in Taiwan has declined over the past 20 years, and what this might mean in terms of trends in abortion. Finally, we also learn about risk factors for recurrent hospital-acquired infection with multi-drug resistant bacteria, and the value of dental screening for patients with tinnitus.

      PubDate: 2016-06-14T16:21:04Z
       
  • Continuous epidermal growth factor receptor-tyrosine kinase inhibitor
           administration in primary lung adenocarcinoma patients harboring favorable
           mutations with controlled target lung tumors dose not hinder survival
           benefit despite small new lesions

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 June 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Ping-Chih Hsu, Li-Chung Chiu, Shih-Hong Li, Chih-Hung Chen, Chih-Liang Wang, Kuo-Chin Kao, John Wen-Chang Chang, Chih-Wei Wang, Chih-Teng Yu, Fu-Tsai Chung, Cheng-Ta Yang, Chien-Ying Liu
      Background In this study, we investigated the efficacy of continuous epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) administration in lung adenocarcinoma patients harboring favorable mutations regarding the progressive disease (PD) status with appearance of indolent new lesions. Methods From June 2010 to October 2012, 102 patients with lung adenocarcinoma, harboring favorable EGFR mutations and treated with EGFR-TKI were analyzed. Definite new lesions were detected during EGFR-TKI therapy, even though the primary target tumors were controlled. Results Of the 102 patients, 57 continued and 45 discontinued EGFR-TKI therapy. The median overall survival was 529 days for the discontinuation group and 791 days for the continuation group (p = 0.0197). Median survival time after the discontinuation of EGFR-TKI was 181 days and 115 days in the discontinuation and continuation groups, respectively (p = 0.1776), whereas median survival time after the appearance of indolent new lesions was 204 days and 262 days, respectively (p = 0.0237). Conclusion Continuous EGFR-TKI administration in favorable EGFR-mutative lung adenocarcinoma patients with controlled primary tumors did not hinder the survival benefit, despite the appearance of new lesions.

      PubDate: 2016-06-14T16:21:04Z
       
  • Risk factors of multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii recurrence
           after successful eradication in ventilated patients

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 10 June 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Chiung-Yu Lin, Yu-Mu Chen, Meng-Chih Lin, Yu-Ping Chang, Tung-Ying Chao, Chin-Chou Wang, Yuh-Chyn Tsai, Lien Shi Shen, Chin-Ling Li, An-Shen Lin
      Background Clinically, multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii (MDR-AB) recurrence is found in some patients although identified as successfully eradicated. We aim to discover the characteristics of patients with MDR-AB recurrence in the respiratory tract. Methods We retrospectively collected 106 chronic respiratory failure patients with MDR-AB harvest in pulmonary secretion culture. Results MDR-AB was successfully eradicated in 69 patients. Diabetes mellitus (p = 0.030, odds ratio [OR]: 2.7, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.1–6.4) and acute respiratory distress syndrome (p = 0.001, OR = 4.8, 95% CI: 1.8–12.7) reduce the MDR-AB eradication rate. Besides, a classification of colonization or infection was made beyond the 69 MDR-AB eradicated patients. In the colonization group, diabetes mellitus (p = 0.009; OR = 5.1, 95% CI: 1.5–17.6) is the only independent factor to increase the recurrence rate. Glycated hemoglobin level is also analyzed for each group to investigate diabetes control effect, but no significant difference found. Conclusions Diabetes mellitus is a risk factor of MDR-AB recurrence among MDR-AB-colonized patients; the impact of localized pneumonia patch in MDR-AB-infected patients requires further study to be clarified.

      PubDate: 2016-06-14T16:21:04Z
       
  • Contraceptive behaviour in North India

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 1 June 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Manas Pratim Roy


      PubDate: 2016-06-08T06:17:25Z
       
  • Meeting the unmet needs of family planning

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 1 June 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Deepti Choudhary


      PubDate: 2016-06-08T06:17:25Z
       
  • Time trend of incidence rates of cleft lip/palate in Taiwan from 1994 to
           2013

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 1 June 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Wei-Jung Chang, Lai-Chu See, Lun-Jou Lo
      Background This study was to estimate the incidence rate of cleft lip and/or cleft palate (CL/P) in Taiwan from 1994 to 2013, and to assess the time trend over these years. Methods Retrospective data analysis was performed on records of all newborns with CL/P treated at Chang Gung Craniofacial Center, the only treatment center for CL/P in Taiwan, from 1994 to 2013. Three-year moving average rates were computed and linear regression was used to explore the annual average percentage change. Results From 1994 to 2013, 7282 newborns with CL/P were identified, corresponding to an annual rate of 1.48‰ (95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.45‰–1.52‰). There was a significant decline of rate of cleft lip with or without cleft palate (CL ± P) (−2.9% ± 0.2%, p < 0.0001) but slightly increase of rate of cleft palate (CP) only (+0.2% ± 0.07%, p = 0.004). Conclusion From 1994 to 2013, the annual rate of incidence of CL/P was 1.48‰ in Taiwan. The 2.9% annual decline of the rate was mainly from the CL ± P group, not the CP group.

      PubDate: 2016-06-08T06:17:25Z
       
  • The occlusal imaging and analysis system by T-scan III in tinnitus
           patients

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 1 June 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Federica Di Berardino, Eliana Filipponi, Massimo Schiappadori, Stella Forti, Diego Zanetti, Antonio Cesarani
      Background Several studies have demonstrated that the prevalence of temporomandibular disorders (TMDs) in tinnitus patients ranges from 7% to 95%, and it is reported in literature that idiopathic tinnitus patients should be referred to a dentist to define whether or not the tinnitus is associated with TMD. However, the possible pathophysiological relation between TMDs and tinnitus is not generally investigated in clinical practice. Methods The patterns and forces of occlusal contacts have been studied by means of T-scan III in 47 tinnitus patients (23 suffering from idiopathic tinnitus and 24 affected by Ménière disease [MD]) and 13 healthy subjects. Results The center of force target was offset in the opposite direction in 15/23 idiopathic tinnitus and in 7/24 MD patients (p = 0.026). No significant variation was found in the occlusal force. Conclusions Our data suggest that a diagnostic screening method for occlusal stability in the intercuspidal position might be clinically useful in idiopathic tinnitus patients.

      PubDate: 2016-06-08T06:17:25Z
       
  • Honoring antiparasitics: The 2015 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 6 June 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal
      Author(s): Wei-June Chen
      Protozoa and helminths are the two main groups that cause parasitic diseases with a broad spectrum of clinical symptoms. Protozoa are unicellular organisms like the malaria parasite Plasmodium, which is responsible for the majority of deaths associated with parasitic infections. Helminths are alternative parasites that can produce debilitating diseases in hosts, some of which result in chronic infections. The discovery of effective therapeutic drugs is the key to improving health in regions of poverty and poor sanitation where these parasites usually occur. It is very encouraging that the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was awarded to Youyou Tu as well as William C. Campbell and Satoshi Õmura for their considerable contributions in discovering artemisinin and avermectin, respectively. Both drugs revolutionized therapies for filariasis and malaria, significantly reducing by large percentages their morbidity and mortality.

      PubDate: 2016-06-08T06:17:25Z
       
  • Quantifying cell behaviors in negative-pressure induced monolayer cell
           movement

    • Abstract: Publication date: February 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1
      Author(s): Shu-Er Chow, Carl Pai-Chu Chen, Chih-Chin Hsu, Wen-Chung Tsai, Jong-Shyan Wang, Ning-Chun Hsu
      Background Negative-pressure of 125 mmHg (NP) has been shown to accelerate wound healing. Effects of NP on human keratinocyte behaviors during wound healing process were highlighted in this study. Methods An NP incubator incorporating the electric cell–substrate impedance sensing (ECIS) technique has been built to quantify monolayer keratinocytes movement in serum-free media at the ambient pressure (AP) and NP for 12 h. Monolayer cell motions were continuously recorded by ECIS in the frequency range of 22.5–64 kHz. Membrane capacitance (Cm), cell–substratum resistance (α), and cell–cell junction resistance (Rb) were evaluated in cells at the different pressures. Results A greater monolayer cell migration distance was found in cells at NP. Decreased cell–substratum adhesion reflected in the significantly low α (AP:NP = ∼5 Ω0.5:∼3 Ω0.5⋅cm), decreased integrin expression, and increased cell–substratum distance were seen in cells at NP. A significantly increased Cm (AP:NP = ∼4:∼8 μF/cm2) in association with increased membrane ruffling and microtubule filaments were observed early in the monolayer cell movement at NP. A progressive drop in the Rb from 1.2 Ω·cm2 to 0.8 Ω·cm2 corresponding to the gradually decreased E-cadherin expressions were observed 6 h after wound closure after NP treatment. Conclusion A quick membrane ruffling formation, an early cell–substratum separation, and an ensuing decrease in the cellular interaction occur in cells at NP. These specific monolayer cell behaviors at NP have been quantified and possibly accelerate wound healing.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Stimulation of transforming growth factor-beta-1 and contact with type I
           collagen cooperatively facilitate irreversible transdifferentiation in
           proximal tubular cells

    • Abstract: Publication date: February 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1
      Author(s): Chieh-Li Yen, Yi-Jung Li, Hsin-Hsu Wu, Cheng-Hao Weng, Cheng-Chia Lee, Yung-Chang Chen, Ming-Yang Chang, Tzung-Hai Yen, Hsiang-Hao Hsu, Cheng-Chieh Hung, Chih-Wei Yang, Ya-Chung Tian
      Background By transdifferentiation, proximal tubular cells (PTC) have been considered as a source of interstitial myofibroblasts. We examined the combined effect of transforming growth factor-beta-1 (TGF-β1) stimulation and contact with type I collagen on PTC transdifferentiation. Methods Human kidney-2 cells were grown on type I substratum with the concurrent stimulation of TGF-β1. Results Following addition of TGF-β1, cells acquired an elongated fibroblastic appearance and an increase in α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) expression, a myofibroblastic marker. Upon addition of TGF-β1, E-cadherin expression, an epithelial marker, was reduced, while cytokeratin expression, another epithelial marker, remained unaltered. Following removal of TGF-β1, PTC regained an epithelial appearance and E-cadherin expression reverted to the unstimulated level, suggesting incomplete and reversible transdifferentiation. Addition of TGF-β1 to cells grown on type I collagen demonstrated a cooperatively increased α-SMA expression and decreased E-cadherin and cytokeratin expressions, suggesting more complete transdifferentiation. Co-stimulation of TGF-β1 and contact with type I collagen led to a stable cell phenotype and persistently decreased E-cadherin, which was not reversed upon removal of TGF-β1, indicating irreversible transdifferentiation. Addition of TGF-β1 or type I collagen caused a 4-fold increase in migratory cell number as compared to the control, whereas addition of both TGF-β1 and type I collagen led to an 11-fold increase. Conclusions TGF-β1 alone results in a reversible and incomplete transdifferentiation. The combination of TGF-β1 and exposure to type I collagen leads to an irreversible and complete PTC transdifferentiation.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Current and future alternative therapies for beta-thalassemia major

    • Abstract: Publication date: February 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1
      Author(s): Edouard de Dreuzy, Kanit Bhukhai, Philippe Leboulch, Emmanuel Payen
      Beta-thalassemia is a group of frequent genetic disorders resulting in the synthesis of little or no β-globin chains. Novel approaches are being developed to correct the resulting α/β-globin chain imbalance, in an effort to move beyond the palliative management of this disease and the complications of its treatment (e.g. life-long red blood cell transfusion, iron chelation, splenectomy), which impose high costs on healthcare systems. Three approaches are envisaged: fetal globin gene reactivation by pharmacological compounds injected into patients throughout their lives, allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT), and gene therapy. HSCT is currently the only treatment shown to provide an effective, definitive cure for β-thalassemia. However, this procedure remains risky and histocompatible donors are identified for only a small fraction of patients. New pharmacological compounds are being tested, but none has yet made it into common clinical practice for the treatment of beta-thalassemia major. Gene therapy is in the experimental phase. It is emerging as a powerful approach without the immunological complications of HSCT, but with other possible drawbacks. Rapid progress is being made in this field, and long-term efficacy and safety studies are underway.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Helicobacter pylori infection: An overview of bacterial virulence factors
           and pathogenesis

    • Abstract: Publication date: February 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1
      Author(s): Cheng-Yen Kao, Bor-Shyang Sheu, Jiunn-Jong Wu
      Helicobacter pylori pathogenesis and disease outcomes are mediated by a complex interplay between bacterial virulence factors, host, and environmental factors. After H. pylori enters the host stomach, four steps are critical for bacteria to establish successful colonization, persistent infection, and disease pathogenesis: (1) Survival in the acidic stomach; (2) movement toward epithelium cells by flagella-mediated motility; (3) attachment to host cells by adhesins/receptors interaction; (4) causing tissue damage by toxin release. Over the past 20 years, the understanding of H. pylori pathogenesis has been improved by studies focusing on the host and bacterial factors through epidemiology researches and molecular mechanism investigations. These include studies identifying the roles of novel virulence factors and their association with different disease outcomes, especially the bacterial adhesins, cag pathogenicity island, and vacuolating cytotoxin. Recently, the development of large-scale screening methods, including proteomic, and transcriptomic tools, has been used to determine the complex gene regulatory networks in H. pylori. In addition, a more available complete genomic database of H. pylori strains isolated from patients with different gastrointestinal diseases worldwide is helpful to characterize this bacterium. This review highlights the key findings of H. pylori virulence factors reported over the past 20 years.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • New mechanisms of bacterial arsenic resistance

    • Abstract: Publication date: February 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1
      Author(s): Hung-Chi Yang, Barry P. Rosen
      Arsenic is the most pervasive environmental substance and is classified by the International Agency for Research on Cancer as a Group 1 human carcinogen. Nearly every organism has resistance pathways for inorganic arsenic, and in bacteria, their genes are found in arsenic resistance (ars) operons. Recently, a parallel pathway for organic arsenicals has been identified. The ars genes responsible for the organoarsenical detoxification includes arsM, which encodes an As(III) S-adenosylmethionine methyltransferase, arsI, which encodes a C–As bond lyase, and arsH, which encodes a methylarsenite oxidase. The identification and properties of arsM, arsI and arsH are described in this review.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Helicobacter pylori's road to colonization

    • Abstract: Publication date: February 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1
      Author(s): Emma Louise Walton
      In this issue of the Biomedical Journal we learn about the virulence factors that have made Helicobacter pylori such a successful pathogen. We also highlight some in vitro findings that may shed light on epithelial–mesenchymal transition that occurs during renal fibrosis. This issue also includes the findings of clinical trials testing the effectiveness of drugs to limit nausea in chemotherapy patients and the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal syndrome.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Combination of palonosetron, aprepitant, and dexamethasone as primary
           antiemetic prophylaxis for cisplatin-based chemotherapy

    • Abstract: Publication date: February 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1
      Author(s): Chan-Keng Yang, Chiao-En Wu, Chuang-Chi Liaw
      Background The purpose of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of combined treatment with the long-acting 5-hydroxytryptamine receptor-3 antagonist, palonosetron, the neurokinin-1 receptor antagonist, oral aprepitant, and dexamethasone as primary antiemetic prophylaxis for cancer patients receiving highly emetogenic cisplatin-based chemotherapy. Methods Chemotherapy-naïve patients received the triple combination of palonosetron (0.25 mg), aprepitant (125 mg on day 1 and 80 mg on days 2 and 3), and dexamethasone (20 mg) from the beginning of highly emetogenic chemotherapy with cisplatin-based (≥50 mg/m2) regimens. The primary endpoint was a complete response (no emetic episodes and no rescue antiemetics) during the days 1–6. Results Sixty-nine hospitalized patients receiving chemotherapy from September 2012 to October 2014 were analyzed. Complete response of vomiting and nausea-free was achieved in 97.1% and 85.5% of patients in the first cycle, respectively, and 96.7% and 83.6% of patients in the second cycle, respectively. Common adverse events in all 69 patients included constipation (43%), hiccup (26%), and headache (4%). Conclusion The combination of palonosetron, aprepitant, and dexamethasone as primary antiemetic prophylaxis for cancer patients with highly emetogenic cisplatin-based chemotherapy is effective.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Factors affect stability of intertrochanteric fractures when elderly
           patients fall

    • Abstract: Publication date: February 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1
      Author(s): Po-Han Chen, Chi-Chuan Wu, Wen-Jer Chen
      Background Factors affecting the stability of intertrochanteric fractures when elderly patients fall are few to be reported. In this retrospective study, possible factors were investigated. Methods Two hundred and twenty-three consecutive elderly patients (≥65 years) with intertrochanteric fractures due to low energy injuries were studied. Patient age, gender, body mass index (BMI), body weight and height were compared between fractures with stable (AO/OTA type A1, intact lesser trochanter, 80 patients) and unstable (AO/OTA types A2, A3, displaced lesser trochanter or reverse obliquity fractures, 143 patients) types. Statistical approaches with univariate and multivariate analyses were performed. Results There was no statistical difference in patient gender, age, body weight or height between patients with stable and unstable fractures in both univariate and multivariate analysis. However, BMI was statistically higher in patients with unstable fractures (22.7 vs 21.4, p = 0.01) in univariate analysis, but without a difference in multivariate analysis (p = 0.07). Conclusions Stability of intertrochanteric fractures may be not associated with gender, age, body weight and height or BMI when elderly patients fall. Bone mineral density or impact direction may be other possible contributing factors but requires further proofs.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • A randomized, open-label, standard controlled, parallel group study of
           efficacy and safety of baclofen, and chlordiazepoxide in uncomplicated
           alcohol withdrawal syndrome

    • Abstract: Publication date: February 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1
      Author(s): K. Girish, K. Vikram Reddy, Lakshmi V. Pandit, H.P. Pundarikaksha, R. Vijendra, K. Vasundara, R. Manjunatha, Moulya Nagraj, R. Shruthi
      Background Alcohol withdrawal syndrome (AWS) is a distressing condition, generally controlled by benzodiazepines (BZD's). Baclofen, a gamma-aminobutyric acid-B (GABAB) agonist, has also shown promising results in controlling AWS. As there are few studies comparing the efficacy and tolerability of chlordiazepoxide with baclofen, the present study was taken up. The objective of this study was to compare efficacy and tolerability of baclofen with chlordiazepoxide in uncomplicated AWS. Methods Sixty subjects with uncomplicated AWS were randomized into two groups of 30 each, to receive baclofen (30 mg) or chlordiazepoxide (75 mg) in decremented fixed dose regime for 9 days. Clinical efficacy was assessed by Clinical Institute Withdrawal Assessment for Alcohol-Revised Scale (CIWA-Ar) and tolerability by the nature and severity of adverse events. Lorazepam was used as rescue medication. Secondary efficacy parameters were Clinical Global Impression scores, symptom-free days, and subject satisfaction as assessed by visual analog scale. This study was registered with Clinical Trial Registry-India (CTRI/2013/04/003588), also subsequently registered with WHO's ICTRP clinical trial portal. Results Both baclofen and chlordiazepoxide showed a consistent reduction in the total CIWA-Ar scores. However, chlordiazepoxide showed a faster and a more effective control of anxiety and agitation requiring lesser lorazepam supplementation, and also showed a better subject satisfaction compared to baclofen. Both the drugs showed good tolerability with mild self-limiting adverse events. Conclusion The present study demonstrates that baclofen is not as good as chlordiazepoxide in the treatment of uncomplicated AWS. However, baclofen might be considered as an alternative.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Effects of long-term light, darkness and oral administration of melatonin
           on serum levels of melatonin

    • Abstract: Publication date: February 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1
      Author(s): Naser Farhadi, Majid Gharghani, Zahra Farhadi
      Background Continuous light or darkness has various effects on different systems. In the present research work, the effects of constant light and darkness exposure of male rats and oral administration of exogenous melatonin on the serum levels of melatonin have been studied. Methods Thirty adult male Wistar rats were divided into six groups of: (1) Control, (2) melatonin, (3) light, (4) light and melatonin, (5) darkness, and (6) darkness and melatonin. All groups were placed according to light conditions for 10 days. Melatonin was administered orally after a period of 10 days to Groups 2, 4, and 6 (10 mg/kg of body weight). Serum levels of melatonin were measured using ELISA. Results The results showed the significant difference on serum melatonin in darkness, no light, and control groups. Although serum levels of melatonin were different in melatonin groups, the difference is not significant. Conclusions We concluded that being exposed to continuous darkness leads to an increase in serum melatonin.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Type 4 renal tubular acidosis in a kidney transplant recipient

    • Abstract: Publication date: February 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1
      Author(s): Manjunath Kulkarni
      We report a case of a 66-year-old diabetic patient who presented with muscle weakness 2 weeks after kidney transplantation. Her immunosuppressive regimen included tacrolimus, mycophenolate mofetil, and steroids. She was found to have hyperkalemia and normal anion gap metabolic acidosis. Tacrolimus levels were in therapeutic range. All other drugs such as beta blockers and trimethoprim – sulfamethoxazole were stopped. She did not respond to routine antikalemic measures. Further evaluation revealed type 4 renal tubular acidosis. Serum potassium levels returned to normal after starting sodium bicarbonate and fludrocortisone therapy. Though hyperkalemia is common in kidney transplant recipients, determining exact cause can guide specific treatment.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Reply to: “Medical record review for faculty promotion: A cohort
           analysis”

    • Abstract: Publication date: February 2016
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1
      Author(s): B.V. Murlimanju


      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • The two faces of invariant natural killer T cells

    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2015
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 38, Issue 6
      Author(s): Emma L. Walton
      In this issue of the Biomedical Journal, we take a look at some of the immune system's most peculiar cells, invariant natural killer T cells, which have features of both innate and adaptive cells. We also highlight a clinical study revealing that high serum phosphate levels could show that it's time to start dialysis in patients with chronic kidney diseases. Finally, this issue also includes some case reports, including an unusual case of aspergillosis related to long-term inhaler use.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Natural killer T cells

    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2015
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 38, Issue 6
      Author(s): Jean Kanellopoulos


      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Antigen specificity of invariant natural killer T-cells

    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2015
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 38, Issue 6
      Author(s): Alysia M. Birkholz, Mitchell Kronenberg
      Natural killer T-cells, with an invariant T-cell antigen receptor α-chain (iNKT cells), are unique and conserved subset of lymphocytes capable of altering the immune system through their rapid and potent cytokine responses. They are reactive to lipid antigens presented by the CD1d molecule, an antigen-presenting molecule that is not highly polymorphic. iNKT cell responses frequently involve mixtures of cytokines that work against each other, and therefore attempts are underway to develop synthetic antigens that elicit only strong interferon-gamma (IFNγ) or only strong interleukin-4 responses but not both. Strong IFNγ responses may correlate with tighter binding to CD1d and prolonged stimulation of iNKT cells, and this may be useful for vaccine adjuvants and for stimulating anti-tumor responses. iNKT cells are self-reactive although the structure of the endogenous antigen is controversial. By contrast, bacterial and fungal lipids that engage the T-cell receptor and activate IFNγ from iNKT cells have been identified from both pathogenic and commensal organisms and the responses are in some cases highly protective from pathogens in mice. It is possible that the expanding knowledge of iNKT cell antigens and iNKT cell activation will provide the basis for therapies for patients suffering from infectious and immune diseases and cancer.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Regulatory role of natural killer T cells in diabetes

    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2015
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 38, Issue 6
      Author(s): Celine Tard, Ophelie Rouxel, Agnes Lehuen
      Type 1 and type 2 diabetes are growing public health problems. Despite having different pathophysiologies, both diseases are associated with defects in immune regulation. Invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells are innate-like T cells that recognize glycolipids presented by CD1d. These cells not only play a key role in the defense against pathogens, but also exert potent immunoregulatory functions. The regulatory role of iNKT cells in the prevention of type 1 diabetes has been demonstrated in murine models and analyzed in diabetic patients. The decreased frequency of iNKT cells in non-obese diabetic mice initially suggested the regulatory role of this cell subset. Increasing the frequency or the activation of iNKT cells with agonists protects non-obese diabetic mice from the development of diabetes. Several mechanisms mediate iNKT regulatory functions. They can rapidly produce immunoregulatory cytokines, interleukin (IL)-4 and IL-10. They induce tolerogenic dendritic cells, thereby inducing the anergy of autoreactive anti-islet T cells and increasing the frequency of T regulatory cells (Treg cells). Synthetic agonists are able to activate iNKT cells and represent potential therapeutic treatment in order to prevent type 1 diabetes. Growing evidence points to a role of immune system in glucose intolerance and type 2 diabetes. iNKT cells are resident cells of adipose tissue and their local and systemic frequencies are reduced in obese patients, suggesting their involvement in local and systemic inflammation during obesity. With the discovery of potential continuity between type 1 and type 2 diabetes in some patients, the role of iNKT cells in these diseases deserves further investigation.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • Shared neurocircuitry underlying feeding and drugs of abuse in Drosophila

    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2015
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 38, Issue 6
      Author(s): Dan Landayan, Fred W. Wolf
      The neural circuitry and molecules that control the rewarding properties of food and drugs of abuse appear to partially overlap in the mammalian brain. This has raised questions about the extent of the overlap and the precise role of specific circuit elements in reward and in other behaviors associated with feeding regulation and drug responses. The much simpler brain of invertebrates including the fruit fly Drosophila, offers an opportunity to make high-resolution maps of the circuits and molecules that govern behavior. Recent progress in Drosophila has revealed not only some common substrates for the actions of drugs of abuse and for the regulation of feeding, but also a remarkable level of conservation with vertebrates for key neuromodulatory transmitters. We speculate that Drosophila may serve as a model for distinguishing the neural mechanisms underlying normal and pathological motivational states that will be applicable to mammals.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • The challenges of amblyopia treatment

    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2015
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 38, Issue 6
      Author(s): Gail D.E. Maconachie, Irene Gottlob
      The treatment of amblyopia, particularly anisometropic (difference in refractive correction) and/or strabismic (turn of one eye) amblyopia has long been a challenge for many clinicians. Achieving optimum outcomes, where the amblyopic eye reaches a visual acuity similar to the fellow eye, is often impossible in many patients. Part of this challenge has resulted from a previous lack of scientific evidence for amblyopia treatment that was highlight by a systematic review by Snowdon et al. in 1998. Since this review, a number of publications have revealed new findings in the treatment of amblyopia. This includes the finding that less intensive occlusion treatments can be successful in treating amblyopia. A relationship between adherence to treatment and visual acuity has also been established and has been shown to be influenced by the use of intervention material. In addition, there is growing evidence of that a period of glasses wearing only can significantly improve visual acuity alone without any other modes of treatment. This review article reports findings since the Snowdon's report.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
  • A study of malignancy rates in different diagnostic categories of the
           Bethesda system for reporting thyroid cytopathology: An institutional
           experience

    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2015
      Source:Biomedical Journal, Volume 38, Issue 6
      Author(s): P. Arul, C. Akshatha, Suresh Masilamani
      Background The Bethesda system for reporting thyroid cytopathology (TBSRTC) was introduced to standardize the communication of fine-needle aspiration cytology (FNAC) interpretation between clinicians and pathologists. This study was undertaken to evaluate the diagnostic utility of TBSRTC for reporting thyroid FNACs and rate of malignancy in each diagnostic category of TBSRTC. Methods A total of 603 thyroid FNAC results were retrieved retrospectively between July 2012 and January 2015 and reclassified according to TBSRTC. Of these, 392 cases had a histopathological follow-up. The FNACs results were compared to the histopathological diagnoses and the malignancy rates of each diagnostic categories of TBSRTC were calculated. Results Of the 603 FNACs, nondiagnostic were 16 (2.7%), benign were 393 (65.2%), atypia of undetermined significance/follicular lesion of undetermined significance (AUS/FLUS) were 60 (10%), follicular neoplasm/suspicious for a follicular neoplasm (FN/SFN) were 64 (10.6%), suspicious for malignancy (SM) were 32 (5.3%), and malignant were 38 (6.3%). In 392 cases, there was follow-up histopathology. The malignancy rate for nondiagnostic, benign, AUS/FLUS, FN/SFN, SM, and malignant categories were 0%, 0.8%, 24.4%, 28.9%, 70.8%, and 100%, respectively. Conclusion Our study validated the efficacy of TBSRTC. In conclusion, the malignancy rate of AUS/FLUS in this study was higher than the risk mentioned in TBSRTC and other published studies. Hence, AUS/FLUS category patients in our setup warrant further workup including ultrasound and/or thyroid scan in addition to immediate repeat FNAC.

      PubDate: 2016-05-17T16:25:35Z
       
 
 
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