In JoVE (1)

Other Publications (200)

Articles by Marina Mori da Cunha in JoVE

 JoVE Medicine

A Novel Surgical Approach for Intratracheal Administration of Bioactive Agents in a Fetal Mouse Model

1Molecular Virology and Gene Therapy, KU Leuven, 2Department of Woman and Child, KU Leuven, 3Neurobiology and Gene Therapy, KU Leuven, 4Division of Nuclear Medicine, KU Leuven, 5Biomedical NMR Unit/ MoSAIC, KU Leuven

Other articles by Marina Mori da Cunha on PubMed

The Detection of a Population of Submillimeter-bright, Strongly Lensed Galaxies

Science (New York, N.Y.). Nov, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 21051633

Gravitational lensing is a powerful astrophysical and cosmological probe and is particularly valuable at submillimeter wavelengths for the study of the statistical and individual properties of dusty star-forming galaxies. However, the identification of gravitational lenses is often time-intensive, involving the sifting of large volumes of imaging or spectroscopic data to find few candidates. We used early data from the Herschel Astrophysical Terahertz Large Area Survey to demonstrate that wide-area submillimeter surveys can simply and easily detect strong gravitational lensing events, with close to 100% efficiency.

The Early Days of Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 Virus Infection in the Central Region of Portugal

Revista Portuguesa De Pneumologia. Nov-Dec, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 21067692

The first case of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 virus infection was diagnosed in the central region of Portugal on June 16, 2009, in a woman infected in Canada.

Tactile Communication Using a CO(2) Flux Stimulation for Blind or Deafblind People

Conference Proceedings : ... Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Conference. 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 21096927

This paper describes a tactile stimulation system for producing nonvisual image patterns to blind or deafblind people. The stimulator yields a CO(2) pulsatile flux directed to the user's skin throughout a needle that is coupled to a 2-D tactile plotter. The fluxtactile plotter operates with two step motor mounted on a wood structure, controlled by a program developed to produce alphanumerical characters and geometric figures of different size and speed, which will be used to investigate the psychophysical properties of this kind of tactile communication. CO(2) is provided by a cylinder that delivers a stable flux, which is converted to a pulsatile mode through a high frequency solenoid valve that can chop it up to 1 kHz. Also, system temperature is controlled by a Peltier based device. Tests on the prototype indicate that the system is a valuable tool to investigate the psychophysical properties of the skin in response to stimulation by CO(2) jet, allowing a quantitative and qualitative analysis as a function of stimulation parameters. With the system developed, it was possible to plot the geometric figures proposed: triangles, rectangles and octagons, in different sizes and speeds, and verify the control of the frequency of CO(2) jet stimuli.

Toxic Metals (Pb and Cd) and Their Respective Antagonists (Ca and Zn) in Infant Formulas and Milk Marketed in Brasilia, Brazil

International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. Nov, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 21139877

In non-ideal scenarios involving partial or non-breastfeeding, cow's milk-based dairy products are mainstream in infant feeding. Therefore, it is important to study the concentrations of potentially neurotoxic contaminants (Pb and Cd) and their respective counteracting elements (Ca and Zn) in infant dairy products. Fifty-five brands of infant formulas and milk sold in Brasilia, Brazil were analyzed. The dairy products came from areas in the central-west (26%), southeast (29%) and south of Brazil (36%) extending as far as Argentina (7%) and the Netherlands (2%). For toxic Pb and Cd, median concentrations in powdered samples were 0.109 mg/kg and 0.033 mg/kg, respectively; in fluid samples median Pb concentration was 0.084 mg/kg, but median Cd concentration was below the limit of detection and overall values were below reference safety levels. However, 62% of these samples presented higher Pb concentration values than those established by FAO/WHO. Although the inverse correlation between Cd and Zn (Spearman r = -0.116; P = 0.590) was not statistically significant, the positive correlation between Ca and Pb was (Spearman r = 0.619; P < 0.0001). Additionally, there was a significant correlation between Pb and Cd. Furthermore, the study also revealed that provision of the essential trace element Zn in infant formulas can provide adequate amounts of the recommended daily requirements. Infant formulas and milk sold for consumption by infants and children can be an efficient tool to monitor neurotoxic metal risk exposure among young children.

Conscious Sedation for Upper Digestive Endoscopy Performed by Endoscopists

Revista Brasileira De Anestesiologia. Nov-Dec, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 21146053

Conscious sedation in the ambulatory setting albeit common is not risk-free. The present study aimed at evaluating the blood pressure, heart rate and peripheral oxygen saturation in patients submitted to conscious sedation for upper digestive endoscopy performed by endoscopists.

HIV Subtype, Epidemiological and Mutational Correlations in Patients from Paraná, Brazil

The Brazilian Journal of Infectious Diseases : an Official Publication of the Brazilian Society of Infectious Diseases. Sep-Oct, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 21221479

Analyze patients with HIV infection from Curitiba, Paraná, their epidemiological characteristics and HIV RAM.

Magnetic Phases of the Quasi-two-dimensional Compounds Fe(x)Co(1 - X)Ta(2)O(6)

Journal of Physics. Condensed Matter : an Institute of Physics Journal. Nov, 2010  |  Pubmed ID: 21406790

We report new results on the magnetic properties of the Fe(x)Co(1 - x)Ta(2)O(6) series of compounds. Essentially using neutron-diffraction and magnetic measurements we study, in more detail, the low-x limit of the temperature versus x phase diagram, where a new bicritical point is observed. The complete phase diagram shows three different magnetic phases at low temperature, for a high, intermediate and very low iron content. These phases consist of distinct antiferromagnetic orderings, characterized by different pairs of propagation vectors. We obtain information about the intraplane exchange interactions by fitting a high-temperature series of the magnetic susceptibility. Here we improve on a previously employed model, showing that two non-equivalent next-nearest-neighbor interactions must be taken into account in order to allow for in-plane magnetic orderings that are consistent with the neutron-diffraction results.

Staging of Uterine Cervical Cancer with MRI: Guidelines of the European Society of Urogenital Radiology

European Radiology. May, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21063710

To design clear guidelines for the staging and follow-up of patients with uterine cervical cancer, and to provide the radiologist with a framework for use in multidisciplinary conferences.

Homocysteine Induces Oxidative-nitrative Stress in Heart of Rats: Prevention by Folic Acid

Cardiovascular Toxicology. Mar, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21076891

Hyperhomocysteinemia is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, stroke, and thrombosis; however, the mechanisms by which homocysteine triggers these dysfunctions are not fully understood. In the present study, we investigated the effect of chronic hyperhomocysteinemia on some parameters of oxidative stress, namely thiobarbituric acid reactive substances, an index of lipid peroxidation, 2',7'-dichlorofluorescein (H(2)DCF) oxidation, activities of antioxidant enzymes named superoxide dismutase and catalase, as well as nitrite levels in heart of young rats. We also evaluated the effect of folic acid on biochemical alterations elicited by hyperhomocysteinemia. Wistar rats received daily subcutaneous injection of homocysteine (0.3-0.6 μmol/g body weight) and/or folic acid (0.011 μmol/g body weight) from their 6th to the 28th day of life. Controls and treated rats were killed 1 h and/or 12 h after the last injection. Results showed that chronic homocysteine administration increases lipid peroxidation and reactive species production and decreases enzymatic antioxidant defenses and nitrite levels in the heart of young rats killed 1 h, but not 12 h after the last injection of homocysteine. Folic acid concurrent administration prevented homocysteine effects probable by its antioxidant properties. Our data indicate that oxidative stress is elicited by chronic hyperhomocystenemia, a mechanism that may contribute, at least in part, to the cardiovascular alterations characteristic of hyperhomocysteinemic patients. If confirmed in human beings, our results could propose that the supplementation of folic acid can be used as an adjuvant therapy in cardiovascular alterations caused by homocysteine.

Design of New Chemotherapeutics Against the Deadly Anthrax Disease. Docking and Molecular Dynamics Studies of Inhibitors Containing Pyrrolidine and Riboamidrazone Rings on Nucleoside Hydrolase from Bacillus Anthracis

Journal of Biomolecular Structure & Dynamics. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21142217

Anthrax is a disease caused by Bacillus anthracis, a dangerous biological warfare agent already used for both military and terrorist purposes. An important selective target for chemotherapy against this disease is nucleoside hydrolase (NH), an enzyme still not found in mammals. Having this in mind we have performed molecular docking studies, aiming to analyze the three-dimensional positioning of six known inhibitors of Trypanosoma vivax NH (TvNH) in the active site of B. anthracis NH (BaNH). We also analyzed the main interactions of these compounds with the active site residues of BaNH and the relevant factors to biological activity. These results, together with further molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, pointed out to the most promising compounds as lead for the design of potential inhibitors of BaNH. Most of the docking and MD results obtained corroborated to each other. Additionally, the docking results also suggested a good correlation with experimental data.

Thermodynamic Framework of the Interaction Between Protein and Solvent Drives Protein Folding

Journal of Biomolecular Structure & Dynamics. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21142247

Insulin and Metformin May Prevent Renal Injury in Young Type 2 Diabetic Goto-Kakizaki Rats

European Journal of Pharmacology. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21167150

Type 2 diabetes is increasing at epidemic proportions throughout the world, and diabetic nephropathy is the principal cause of end stage renal failure. Approximately 40% of patients with type 2 diabetes may progress to nephropathy and a good metabolic control can prevent the development of diabetic renal injury. The aim of our study was to evaluate, in young type 2 diabetic Goto-Kakizaki (GK) rats fed with atherogenic diet, the effects of the anti-diabetic compounds insulin, metformin and gliclazide on renal damage. GK rats fed with atherogenic diet showed increased body weight and fasting blood glucose, total cholesterol, triglycerides, C-reactive protein and protein carbonyl levels and lower HDL-cholesterol concentration; renal markers of inflammation and fibrosis were also elevated. All the anti-diabetic agents ameliorated fasting glycaemia and insulin resistance but only insulin and metformin were able to improve glycoxidation, fibrosis and inflammation kidney parameters. Our data suggest that insulin and metformin treatments, improving glicoxidative, inflammatory and fibrotic renal damage markers, play a key role in the prevention of diabetic nephropathy.

Purification, Biochemical Characterization and Antifungal Activity of a New Lipid Transfer Protein (LTP) from Coffea Canephora Seeds with α-amylase Inhibitor Properties

Biochimica Et Biophysica Acta. Apr, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21167915

A growing number of cysteine-rich antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been isolated from plants and particularly from seeds. It has become increasingly clear that these peptides, which include lipid transfer proteins (LTPs), play an important role in the protection of plants against microbial infection.

Epithelial-stromal Interactions in Salivary Glands of Rats Exposed to Chronic Passive Smoking

Archives of Oral Biology. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21168828

Cigarette smoke leads to precancerous and cancerous lesions in the mouth even when the exposure is passive. The salivary glands are amongst the tissues exposed to the smoke but it is unclear whether or not passive cigarette exposure is related to detectable changes in these tissues. The objective of this study was to observe the tissue architecture of the parotid and submandibular glands in rats after passive cigarette exposure and to measure any changes that occurred.

Antifungal Activity of PvD1 Defensin Involves Plasma Membrane Permeabilization, Inhibition of Medium Acidification, and Induction of ROS in Fungi Cells

Current Microbiology. Apr, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21170711

In recent years, studies have demonstrated the function of many antimicrobial peptides against an extensive number of microorganisms that have been isolated from different plant species and that have been used as models for the study of various cellular processes linked to these peptides' activities. Recently, a new defensin from Phaseolus vulgaris (L.) seeds, named PvD(1,) was isolated and characterized. PvD(1) was purified through anion exchange and phase-reverse chromatography. PvD(1)'s antifungal activity was tested. A SYTOX Green uptake assay revealed that the defensin PvD(1) is capable of causing membrane permeabilization in the filamentous fungi Fusarium oxysporum, Fusarium solani, and Fusarium laterithium and in yeast strains Candida parapsilosis, Pichia membranifaciens, Candida tropicalis, Candida albicans, Kluyveromyces marxiannus, and Saccharomyces cerevisiae at a concentration of 100 μg/ml. Ultrastructural analysis of C. albicans and C. guilliermondii cells treated with this defensin revealed disorganization of both cytoplasmic content and the plasma membrane. PvD(1) is also able to inhibit glucose-stimulated acidification of the medium by yeast cells and filamentous fungi, as well as to induce the production of reactive oxygen species and nitric oxide in C. albicans and F. oxysporum cells.

[Prevalence and Determinants of Obesity and Overweight Among Reproductive Age Women Living in the Semi-arid Region of Brazil]

Ciência & Saúde Coletiva. Jan, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21180822

The study estimated the prevalence and determinants of overweight and obesity in women of reproductive age in the Semi-Arid Region of Brazil. In the cluster sampling of 8,000 households of the state of Ceará, 6,845 women were surveyed. Overweight and obesity were measured by the body mass index and risk factors identified by multivariate analysis. The prevalences of overweight and obesity were 32.6% and 16.1%, respectively. After adjusted analysis, obesity was positively associated with age>30 years (PR=1.55), marital status, married (PR=1.36), elementary education (PR=1.40), age at menarche<12 years (OR=1.59), having >1 child (PR=1.65) and contraceptive use (PR=1.31). Specific health and nutritional conditions were identified as highly associated to morbid obesity: hypertension (PR=3.11), diabetes (PR=2.08), dissatisfaction with body image (PR=4.26) and procedures for weight loss (PR=2.73). The study concluded that overweight and obesity are highly prevalent in the Semi-Arid Region of Brazil. Education was the only socioeconomic determinant considered as amenable to change. The reproductive risk factors identified enforce the need to mobilize the services of prenatal and postpartum care and family planning to prevent and control obesity.

Chronic Variable Stress Alters Inflammatory and Cholinergic Parameters in Hippocampus of Rats

Neurochemical Research. Mar, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21184279

In the present study we investigated the effect of chronic variable stress (CVS) on some parameters of the immune system, including levels of cytokines [interleukin 1β (IL-1 β), interleukin 6 (IL-6), tumor necrosis factor α (TNF- α)] and chemokine CCL2 (MCP-1) in the hippocampus of rats. Acetylcholinesterase activity was also evaluated. Sixty-day old Wistar rats were submitted to different mild stressors for 40 days. After the last stress section, the cytokines and MCP-1 were determined by immunoassay and acetylcholinesterase activity by colorimetric method. Results showed that chronic stress significantly increased the levels of IL-1β, IL-6 and TNF-α, but did not alter the levels of MCP-1. In addition, acetylcholinesterase activity was increased in the hippocampus of rats subjected to CVS. These findings suggest that inflammation and cholinergic dysfunction may be, at least in part, important contributors to the neurological dysfunction observed in some depressed patients.

Analysis of the Workers Head Transcriptome of the Asian Subterranean Termite, Coptotermes Gestroi

Bulletin of Entomological Research. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21205397

The lower termite, Coptotermes gestroi (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae), is originally from Southeast Asia and has become a pest in Brazil. The main goal of this study was to survey C. gestroi transcriptome composition. To accomplish this, we sequenced and analyzed 3003 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) isolated from libraries of worker heads. After assembly, 695 uniESTs were obtained from which 349 have similarity with known sequences. Comparison with insect genomes demonstrated similarity, primarily with genes from Apis mellifera (28%), Tribolium castaneum (28%) and Aedes aegypti (10%). Notably, we identified two endogenous cellulases in the sequences, which may be of interest for biotechnological applications. The results presented in this work represent the first genomic study of the Asian subterranean termite, Coptotermes gestroi.

Orbital Signatures As a Descriptor of Regioselectivity and Chemical Reactivity: the Role of the Frontier Orbitals on 1,3-dipolar Cycloadditions

The Journal of Physical Chemistry. A. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21222451

The FERMO concept emerges as a powerful and innovative implement to investigate the role of molecular orbitals applied to the description of breakage and formation of chemical bonds. In this work, Hartree-Fock (HF) theory and density functional (DFT) calculations were performed for a series of four reactions of 1,3-dipolar cycloadditions and were analyzed by molecular orbital (MO) energies, charge transfer, and molecular dynamics (ADMP) techniques for direct dynamics using the DFT method. The regioselectivity for a series of four 1,3-dipolar cycloaddition reactions was studied here using global and local reactivity indexes. We observed that the HOMO energies are insufficient to describe the behavior of these reactions when there is the presence of heteroatoms. By using the frontier effective-for-reaction molecular orbital (FERMO) concept, the reactions that are driven by HOMO, and those that are not, can be better explained, independent of the calculation method used, because both HF and Kohn-Sham methodologies lead to the same FERMO.

Characterization of Activity and Binding Mode of Glycyrrhetinic Acid Derivatives Inhibiting 11β-hydroxysteroid Dehydrogenase Type 2

The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. May, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21236343

Modulation of intracellular glucocorticoid availability is considered as a promising strategy to treat glucocorticoid-dependent diseases. 18β-Glycyrrhetinic acid (GA), the biologically active triterpenoid metabolite of glycyrrhizin, which is contained in the roots and rhizomes of licorice (Glycyrrhiza spp.), represents a well-known but non-selective inhibitor of 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenases (11β-HSDs). However, to assess the physiological functions of the respective enzymes and for potential therapeutic applications selective inhibitors are needed. In the present study, we applied bioassays and 3D-structure modeling to characterize nine 11β-HSD1 and fifteen 11β-HSD2 inhibiting GA derivatives. Comparison of the GA derivatives in assays using cell lysates revealed that modifications at the 3-hydroxyl and/or the carboxyl led to highly selective and potent 11β-HSD2 inhibitors. The data generated significantly extends our knowledge on structure-activity relationship of GA derivatives as 11β-HSD inhibitors. Using recombinant enzymes we found also potent inhibition of mouse 11β-HSD2, despite significant species-specific differences. The selected GA derivatives potently inhibited 11β-HSD2 in intact SW-620 colon cancer cells, although the rank order of inhibitory potential differed from that obtained in cell lysates. The biological activity of compounds was further demonstrated in glucocorticoid receptor (GR) transactivation assays in cells coexpressing GR and 11β-HSD1 or 11β-HSD2. 3D-structure modeling provides an explanation for the differences in the selectivity and activity of the GA derivatives investigated. The most potent and selective 11β-HSD2 inhibitors should prove useful as mechanistic tools for further anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer in vitro and in vivo studies. Article from the Special issue on Targeted Inhibitors.

Antimycobacterial Activity and Alkaloid Prospection of Psychotria Species (Rubiaceae) from the Brazilian Atlantic Rainforest

Planta Medica. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21243585

Ten Psychotria species were collected in two fragments of Atlantic Forest in Rio de Janeiro: Psychotria pubigera (P1A and B), P. ruelliifolia (P2), P. suterela (P3), P. stachyoides (P4), P. capitata (P5), P. glaziovii (P6), P. leiocarpa (P7), P. nuda (P8), P. racemosa (P9) and P. vellosiana (P10). Ethanol extracts of these species were evaluated for their antimycobacterial activity, in an attempt to find new antituberculosis agents. Psychotria pubigera (P1A), P. ruelliifolia (P2) and P. stachyoides (P4) were the most active against Mycobacterium. The anti-inflammatory potential of these extracts was also evaluated in vitro to learn if they inhibit nitric oxide (NO) production in macrophages and if they have free-radical scavenging properties, because inflammation is a severe problem caused by tuberculosis, especially when the infection is from M. bovis or M. tuberculosis. Psychotria suterela (P3), P. stachyoides (P4) and P. capitata (P5) were the most active in inhibiting macrophage NO production but they were not the most antioxidant species. This suggests that NO inhibitory activity is not due to the scavenging of NO generated but due to a specific inhibition of iNOS activity or expression. In addition, cytotoxicity was tested in the macrophages (the host cells of the Mycobacterium) and it was verified that the extracts selectively killed the bacteria and not the host cells. When analyzing antimycobacterial, cytotoxicity and NO inhibitory activities in combination, P. stachyoides (P4) was the most promising anti-TB extract tested. Further, indol alkaloids were detected in P. suterela and P. nuda, and 5,6-dihydro-β-carboline alkaloids in all of the species studied, with the highest amounts found in P. capitata and P. racemosa.

Homocysteine Alters Glutamate Uptake and Na+,K+-ATPase Activity and Oxidative Status in Rats Hippocampus: Protection by Vitamin C

Metabolic Brain Disease. Mar, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21287399

In the present study we investigate the effect of homocysteine on glutamate uptake, Na+,K+-ATPase, enzymatic antioxidant defenses, as well as reactive species levels in hippocampus of rats. The influence of vitamin C, a classic antioxidant, on the effects elicited by homocysteine was also tested. Results showed that chronic hyperhomocysteinemia decreased glutamate uptake and the activities of Na+,K+-ATPase, catalase and superoxide dismutase in hippocampus of rats. Reactive species levels were increased by chronic homocysteine administration. Concomitant administration of vitamin C significantly prevented these alterations caused by homocysteine. According to our results, it seems possible to suggest that the reduction in glutamate uptake and Na+,K+-ATPase activity may be mediated by oxidative stress, since vitamin C prevented these effects. We suggest that the administration of antioxidants should be considered as an adjuvant therapy to specific diet in homocystinuria.

Treatment with N-methyl-D-aspartate Receptor Antagonist (MK-801) Protects Against Oxidative Stress in Lipopolysaccharide-induced Acute Lung Injury in the Rat

International Immunopharmacology. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21296699

Acute lung injury (ALI) and the acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) are common syndromes that affect both clinical and surgical patients. This study describes the effects of a potent and specific N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor antagonist (MK-801) against oxidative stress in acute lung injury induced by intratracheal lipopolysaccharide (LPS) injection. This study was performed using male Wistar rats weighing 200-250g. Rats were randomly divided into four groups: control with isotonic saline instillation (n=6); LPS (100μg/100g of body weight) treated with saline (n=6); LPS treated with MK-801 (0.3mg/kg, intraperitoneally; n=6); LPS treated with MK-801 (0.3mg/kg, intratracheally; n=6). Twelve hours after the LPS instillation, rats were anesthetized and a bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) was performed in order to determine the alveolar-capillary membrane alterations and the inflammatory infiltrate level. Blood and lung samples were isolated and assayed for oxidative stress variables and histopathologic analysis. The use of MK-801 decreased bronchoalveolar lavage fluid protein, LDH activity and inflammatory cells. Indeed, the treatment with MK-801 significantly attenuated lung oxidative damage and histopathologic alterations after LPS instillation. Our data provide the first experimental demonstration that MK-801 decreases oxidative stress and limits inflammatory response and alveolar disarray in lipopolysaccharide-induced acute lung injury.

Treadmill Step Training-induced Adaptive Muscular Plasticity in a Chronic Paraplegia Model

Neuroscience Letters. Apr, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21310212

The purpose of this study was to provide evidence that treadmill step training is capable of attenuating muscle atrophy and may regulate brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in soleus muscle after complete spinal cord transection (SCT) at T8-T9 in rats. Five days after SCT, spinal animals started a 9-week step-training program on a treadmill with partial body weight support and manual step help. The muscular trophism was studied by analyzing muscle weight and myofiber cross-sectional area of the soleus, while Western blot analysis was used to detect BDNF expression in the same muscle. Step training, initiated immediately after SCT in rats, may partially impede/revert muscular atrophy in chronic paralyzed soleus muscle. Moreover, treadmill step training promoted upregulation of the BDNF in soleus muscle, which was positively correlated with muscle weight and myofiber cross-sectional size. These findings have important implications for the comprehension of the neurobiological substrate that promotes exercise-induced effects on paralyzed skeletal muscle and suggests treadmill training is a viable therapeutic approach in spinal cord injuries.

Treatment of Streptococcal Pharyngitis with Once-daily Amoxicillin Versus Intramuscular Benzathine Penicillin G in Low-resource Settings: a Randomized Controlled Trial

Clinical Pediatrics. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21317198

Primary prevention of acute rheumatic fever is achieved by proper antibiotic treatment of group A β -hemolytic streptococcal (GAS) pharyngitis.

Analysis of Bacillus Anthracis Nucleoside Hydrolase Via in Silico Docking with Inhibitors and Molecular Dynamics Simulation

Journal of Molecular Modeling. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21318235

As the enzyme nucleoside hydrolase (NH) is widely found in nature but has not yet been detected in mammals, it is considered an ideal target in the development of chemotherapy against parasitic diseases and bacterial infections like anthrax. Considering the risk that this biological warfare agent represents nowadays, the search for new drugs and new molecular targets in the development of chemotherapy against anthrax is imperative. On this basis, we performed docking studies of six known NH inhibitors at the active site of NH from Bacillus anthracis (BaNH). Subsequently, molecular dynamics (MD) simulations of these compounds inside BaNH were carried out in order to complement the docking studies and select the most promising compounds as leads for the design of potential BaNH inhibitors. Most of the docking and MD results obtained agreed well with each other and showed good correlation with experimental data.

Specific Threonine Phosphorylation of a Host Target by Two Unrelated Type III Effectors Activates a Host Innate Immune Receptor in Plants

Cell Host & Microbe. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21320695

The Arabidopsis NB-LRR immune receptor RPM1 recognizes the Pseudomonas syringae type III effectors AvrB or AvrRpm1 to mount an immune response. Although neither effector is itself a kinase, AvrRpm1 and AvrB are known to target Arabidopsis RIN4, a negative regulator of basal plant defense, for phosphorylation. We show that RIN4 phosphorylation activates RPM1. RIN4(142-176) is necessary and, with appropriate localization sequences, sufficient to support effector-triggered RPM1 activation, with the threonine residue at position 166 being critical. Phosphomimic substitutions at T166 cause effector-independent RPM1 activation. RIN4 T166 is phosphorylated in vivo in the presence of AvrB or AvrRpm1. RIN4 mutants that lose interaction with AvrB cannot be coimmunoprecipitated with RPM1. This defines a common interaction platform required for RPM1 activation by phosphorylated RIN4 in response to pathogenic effectors. Conservation of an analogous threonine across all RIN4-like proteins suggests a key function for this residue beyond the regulation of RPM1.

Macular Hole Secondary to X-linked Juvenile Retinoschisis

Ophthalmic Surgery, Lasers & Imaging : the Official Journal of the International Society for Imaging in the Eye. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21323260

The authors describe a rare case of full-thickness macular hole formation in a 10-year-old boy with X-linked juvenile retinoschisis.

How Much Varus is Optimal with Proximal Femoral Osteotomy to Preserve the Femoral Head in Legg-Calvé-Perthes Disease?

The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. American Volume. Feb, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21325585

Although proximal femoral varus osteotomy is an established operative treatment for Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease, there is a lack of data on how much varus at the osteotomy is optimal for preserving the spherical shape of the femoral head. The purpose of this study was to determine if there is a correlation between the amount of varus used and the Stulberg radiographic outcome at maturity and to determine if the varus angulation improved over time.

Acute and Chronic Hypermethioninemia Alter Na+,K(+)-ATPase Activity in Rat Hippocampus: Prevention by Antioxidants

International Journal of Developmental Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the International Society for Developmental Neuroscience. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21354298

In the current study we initially investigated the influence of antioxidants (vitamins E plus C) on the effect mediated by acute and chronic administration of methionine (Met) on Na(+),K(+)-ATPase activity in rat hippocampus. We also verified whether the alterations on the enzyme after administration of Met and/or antioxidants were associated with changes in relative expression of Na(+),K(+)-ATPase catalytic subunits (isoforms α1, α2 and α3). For acute treatment, young rats received a single subcutaneous injection of Met or saline (control) and were sacrificed 12 h later. In another set of experiments, rats were pretreated for 1 week with daily intraperitoneal administration of vitamins E (40 mg/kg) and C (100 mg/kg) or saline. After that, rats received a single injection of Met or saline and were killed 12 h later. For chronic treatment, Met was administered to rats from the 6th to the 28th day of life; controls and treated rats were sacrificed 12 h after the last injection. In parallel to chronic treatment, rats received a daily intraperitoneal injection of vitamins E and C from the 6th to the 28th day of life and were killed 12 h after the last injection. Results showed that administration of antioxidants partially prevented the inhibition of enzyme activity caused by acute and chronic hypermethioninemia. Besides, we demonstrated that transcription of catalytic subunits of Na(+),K(+)-ATPase was not altered by chronic and acute exposure to Met and/or vitamins E plus C. These data strongly suggest the oxidative damage as one possible mechanism involved in the reduction of Na(+),K(+)-ATPase activity caused by hypermethioninemia and if confirmed in human beings, we might propose the use of antioxidants as an adjuvant therapy in hypermethioninemic patients.

Rosacea Fulminans in Pregnancy with Ocular Perforation

Journal Der Deutschen Dermatologischen Gesellschaft = Journal of the German Society of Dermatology : JDDG. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21366860

Dorsal Forearm Adipofascial Turnover Flap Among the Elderly

The Journal of Hand Surgery, European Volume. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21372057

We have assessed the results of soft tissue cover on the back of the hand using an adipofascial turnover flap. From 2004 until 2007, 14 patients (mean age: 62 years) underwent reconstruction of extensive defects in the dorsum of the hand, using a forearm adipofascial turnover flap based on the perforators of the anterior interosseous artery covered with a split skin graft. The pivot point of the flap is typically 4-6 cm proximal to the level of the radial styloid process. In 93% of patients, the reconstruction healed without any problem. The adipofascial turnover flap is a useful and reliable method of reconstruction of the dorsum of the hand even in elderly patients.

Synthesis of New Glycyrrhetinic Acid Derived Ring A Azepanone, 29-urea and 29-hydroxamic Acid Derivatives As Selective 11β-hydroxysteroid Dehydrogenase 2 Inhibitors

Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry. Mar, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21376605

Glycyrrhetinic acid, the metabolite of the natural product glycyrrhizin, is a well known nonselective inhibitor of 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (11β-HSD) type 1 and type 2. Whereas inhibition of 11β-HSD1 is currently under consideration for treatment of metabolic diseases, such as obesity and diabetes, 11β-HSD2 inhibitors may find therapeutic applications in chronic inflammatory diseases and certain forms of cancer. Recently, we published a series of hydroxamic acid derivatives of glycyrrhetinic acid showing high selectivity for 11β-HSD2. The most potent and selective compound is active against human 11β-HSD2 in the low nanomolar range with a 350-fold selectivity over human 11β-HSD1. Starting from the lead compounds glycyrrhetinic acid and the hydroxamic acid derivatives, novel triterpene type derivatives were synthesized and analyzed for their biological activity against overexpressed human 11β-HSD1 and 11β-HSD2 in cell lysates. Here we describe novel 29-urea- and 29-hydroxamic acid derivatives of glycyrrhetinic acid as well as derivatives with the Beckman rearrangement of the 3-oxime to a seven-membered ring, and the rearrangement of the C-ring from 11-keto-12-ene to 12-keto-9(11)-ene. The combination of modifications on different positions led to compounds comprising further improved selective inhibition of 11β-HSD2 in the lower nanomolar range with up to 3600-fold selectivity.

Characterisation, Immunolocalisation and Antifungal Activity of a Lipid Transfer Protein from Chili Pepper (Capsicum Annuum) Seeds with Novel α-amylase Inhibitory Properties

Physiologia Plantarum. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21382036

Lipid transfer proteins (LTPs) were thus named because they facilitate the transfer of lipids between membranes in vitro. This study was triggered by the characterization of a 9-kDa LTP from Capsicum annuum seeds that we call Ca-LTP(1) . Ca-LTP(1) was repurified, and in the last chromatographic purification step, propanol was used as the solvent in place of acetonitrile to maintain the protein's biological activity. Bidimensional electrophoresis of the 9-kDa band, which corresponds to the purified Ca-LTP(1) , showed the presence of three isoforms with isoelectric points (pIs) of 6.0, 8.5 and 9.5. Circular dichroism (CD) analysis suggested a predominance of α-helices, as expected for the structure of an LTP family member. LTPs immunorelated to Ca-LTP(1) from C. annuum were also detected by western blotting in exudates released from C. annuum seeds and also in other Capsicum species. The tissue and subcellular localization of Ca-LTP(1) indicated that it was mainly localized within dense vesicles. In addition, isolated Ca-LTP(1) exhibited antifungal activity against Colletotrichum lindemunthianum, and especially against Candida tropicalis, causing several morphological changes to the cells including the formation of pseudohyphae. Ca-LTP(1) also caused the yeast plasma membrane to be permeable to the dye SYTOX green, as verified by fluorescence microscopy. We also found that Ca-LTP(1) is able to inhibit mammalian α-amylase activity in vitro.

Pattern Formation and Coexistence Domains for a Nonlocal Population Dynamics

Physical Review. E, Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics. Jan, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21405734

In this Rapid Communication we propose a most general equation to study pattern formation for one-species populations and their limit domains in systems of length L. To accomplish this, we include nonlocality in the growth and competition terms, where the integral kernels now depend on characteristic length parameters α and β. Therefore, we derived a parameter space (α,β) where it is possible to analyze a coexistence curve α^{*}=α^{*}(β) that delimits domains for the existence (or absence) of pattern formation in population dynamics systems. We show that this curve is analogous to the coexistence curve in classical thermodynamics and critical phenomena physics. We have successfully compared this model with experimental data for diffusion of Escherichia coli populations.

Ileal Perineurioma As a Cause of Intussusception

São Paulo Medical Journal = Revista Paulista De Medicina. Jan, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21437510

CONTEXT: Perineuriomas are rare tumors composed of cells resembling those of the normal perineurium. It usually occurs in subcutaneous, soft-tissue or intraneural locations. Very few reports in the literature have described perineuriomas in the gastrointestinal tract, including the stomach, colon and jejunum. CASE REPORT: We report the clinicopathological and immunohistochemical features of a case of ileal perineurioma that was manifested clinically as intestinal obstruction due to intussusception. Ileal perineurioma has not previously been reported at this anatomical location.

[The Profile of Victims Attended by the Pernambuco Prehospital Air Service]

Revista Da Escola De Enfermagem Da U S P. Mar, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21445514

This descriptive, exploratory study was performed using a quantitative approach to address the profile of victims attended by the Pernambuco prehospital air service. The events were evaluated from August 2007 to July 2008, corresponding to the first year of the hangar working in Recife. In the studied period, 283 event forms were studied, with an average 23 events per month. Regarding the flights, 66% were rescue flights with an answer-time of 11 minutes. As for the causes, 79% were external, mainly traffic accidents. Most victims were male, with a median age range of 34 years. The rescue of severe cases should be fast and effective, thus this study analyzed the association between the severity of a victim and the answer-time.

Hepatic Reduction of the Secondary Bile Acid 7-oxolithocholic Acid is Mediated by 11β-hydroxysteroid Dehydrogenase 1

The Biochemical Journal. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21453287

The oxidized bile acid 7-oxoLCA (7-oxolithocholic acid), formed primarily by gut micro-organisms, is reduced in human liver to CDCA (chenodeoxycholic acid) and, to a lesser extent, UDCA (ursodeoxycholic acid). The enzyme(s) responsible remained unknown. Using human liver microsomes, we observed enhanced 7-oxoLCA reduction in the presence of detergent. The reaction was dependent on NADPH and stimulated by glucose 6-phosphate, suggesting localization of the enzyme in the ER (endoplasmic reticulum) and dependence on NADPH-generating H6PDH (hexose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase). Using recombinant human 11β-HSD1 (11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 1), we demonstrate efficient conversion of 7-oxoLCA into CDCA and, to a lesser extent, UDCA. Unlike the reversible metabolism of glucocorticoids, 11β-HSD1 mediated solely 7-oxo reduction of 7-oxoLCA and its taurine and glycine conjugates. Furthermore, we investigated the interference of bile acids with 11β-HSD1-dependent interconversion of glucocorticoids. 7-OxoLCA and its conjugates preferentially inhibited cortisone reduction, and CDCA and its conjugates inhibited cortisol oxidation. Three-dimensional modelling provided an explanation for the binding mode and selectivity of the bile acids studied. The results reveal that 11β-HSD1 is responsible for 7-oxoLCA reduction in humans, providing a further link between hepatic glucocorticoid activation and bile acid metabolism. These findings also suggest the need for animal and clinical studies to explore whether inhibition of 11β-HSD1 to reduce cortisol levels would also lead to an accumulation of 7-oxoLCA, thereby potentially affecting bile acid-mediated functions.

Molecular Modeling of Mycobacterium Tuberculosis DUTpase: Docking and Catalytic Mechanism Studies

Journal of Biomolecular Structure & Dynamics. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21469751

Mycobacterium tuberculosis is a leading cause of infectious disease in the world today. This outlook is aggravated by a growing number of M. tuberculosis infections in individuals who are immunocompromised as a result of HIV infections. Thus, new and more potent anti-TB agents are necessary. Therefore, dUTpase was selected as a target enzyme to combat M. tuberculosis. In this work, molecular modeling methods involving docking and QM/MM calculations were carried out to investigate the binding orientation and predict binding affinities of some potential dUTpase inhibitors. Our results suggest that the best potential inhibitor investigated, among the compounds studied in this work, is the compound dUPNPP. Regarding the reaction mechanism, we concluded that the decisive stage for the reaction is the stage 1. Furthermore, it was also observed that the compounds with a -1 electrostatic charge presented lower activation energy in relation to the compounds with a -2 charge.

FOCUS 1: a Randomized, Double-blinded, Multicentre, Phase III Trial of the Efficacy and Safety of Ceftaroline Fosamil Versus Ceftriaxone in Community-acquired Pneumonia

The Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. Apr, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21482566

Ceftaroline, the active form of the prodrug ceftaroline fosamil, is a novel cephalosporin with bactericidal activity against important pathogens associated with community-acquired pneumonia (CAP), including Streptococcus pneumoniae and common Gram-negative pathogens. FOCUS 1 is a randomized, double-blinded, Phase III study that was conducted to evaluate the efficacy and safety of ceftaroline fosamil in treating patients with CAP. The primary objective was to determine non-inferiority [lower limit of 95% confidence interval (CI) ≥ -10%] in clinical cure rates achieved with ceftaroline fosamil compared with those achieved with ceftriaxone in the clinically evaluable (CE) and modified intent-to-treat efficacy (MITTE) populations.

Oral Tolerance

Immunological Reviews. May, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21488901

The gut-associated lymphoid tissue is the largest immune organ in the body and is the primary route by which we are exposed to antigens. Tolerance induction is the default immune pathway in the gut, and the type of tolerance induced relates to the dose of antigen fed: anergy/deletion (high dose) or regulatory T-cell (Treg) induction (low dose). Conditioning of gut dendritic cells (DCs) by gut epithelial cells and the gut flora, which itself has a major influence on gut immunity, induces CD103(+) retinoic acid-dependent DC that induces Tregs. A number of Tregs are induced at mucosal surfaces. Th3 type Tregs are transforming growth factor-β dependent and express latency-associated peptide (LAP) on their surface and were discovered in the context of oral tolerance. Tr1 type Tregs (interleukin-10 dependent) are induced by nasal antigen and forkhead box protein 3(+) iTregs are induced by oral antigen and by oral administration of aryl hydrocarbon receptor ligands. Oral or nasal antigen ameliorates autoimmune and inflammatory diseases in animal models by inducing Tregs. Furthermore, anti-CD3 monoclonal antibody is active at mucosal surfaces and oral or nasal anti-CD3 monoclonal antibody induces LAP(+) Tregs that suppresses animal models (experimental autoimmune encephalitis, type 1 and type 2 diabetes, lupus, arthritis, atherosclerosis) and is being tested in humans. Although there is a large literature on treatment of animal models by mucosal tolerance and some positive results in humans, this approach has yet to be translated to the clinic. The successful translation will require defining responsive patient populations, validating biomarkers to measure immunologic effects, and using combination therapy and immune adjuvants to enhance Treg induction. A major avenue being investigated for the treatment of autoimmunity is the induction of Tregs and mucosal tolerance represents a non-toxic, physiologic approach to reach this goal.

[Longitudinality/continuity of Care: Identifying Dimensions and Variables to the Evaluation of Primary Health Care in the Context of the Brazilian Public Health System]

Ciência & Saúde Coletiva. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21503452

Longitudinality, which is concerned with Primary Health Care (APS) professionals accompanying patients over time, is considered a central feature of this level of health care. The fulfilment of this attribute is related to positive health results, which justify its use for assessing Primary Health Care. On the other hand, the term is not commonly used by Brazilian authors, and in international literature the term "continuity of care" is used with a similar meaning. Therefore, this study is composed of a conceptual revision of longitudinality/continuity of care, as well as the identification of its dimensions so as to enable the actual performance of this attribute to be assessed. As a result, the similarity between the two terms is highlighted, although the identified dimensions of each attribute do not entirely coincide. The revision allowed three dimensions to be adopted in accordance with the context of the Brazilian public health care system: identification of the basic unit as a regular source of care, a long-lasting treatment bond and continuous information. The proposal of an APS evaluation variables presented herein is line with these dimensions.

[Spatial Distribution of Endemic Diseases in Ribeirão Preto, São Paulo State]

Ciência & Saúde Coletiva. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21503478

The perception that some diseases happen in certain places is old. The concern in studying the relation between the human being and the environment resulted in several studies of medical geography, directed to the analysis of diseases spatial distribution. This sectional study was carried out in Ribeirão Preto, São Paulo State, and aimed to illustrate, through health problems (dengue, leprosy and tuberculosis), how a Geographic Information System tool allows the identification of heterogeneous areas, providing support for the choice of strategies and specific interventions according to the need of residents, as well as, priority of resources to more vulnerable groups. The population comprised cases of dengue, leprosy and tuberculosis notified in Ribeirão Preto in 2000. Data were collected in the Health Secretary Epidemiological Surveillance of the city. In order to obtain the thematic maps, data were geo-codified with the software MapInfo 7.8 e Spring 4.3. The thematic maps showed the density distribution of dengue, leprosy and tuberculosis cases in the city as a way to complement the analysis of health information, pointing priority areas for the control of these diseases.

Role of Antioxidants on Na(+),K (+)-ATPase Activity and Gene Expression in Cerebral Cortex of Hyperprolinemic Rats

Metabolic Brain Disease. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21509571

Considering that Na(+),K(+)-ATPase is an embedded-membrane enzyme and that experimental chronic hyperprolinemia decreases the activity of this enzyme in brain synaptic plasma membranes, the present study investigated the effect of chronic proline administration on thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances, as well as the influence of antioxidant vitamins E plus C on the effects mediated by proline on Na(+),K(+)-ATPase activity in cerebral cortex of rats. The expression of Na(+),K(+)-ATPase catalytic subunits was also evaluated. Results showed that proline increased thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances, suggesting an increase of lipid peroxidation. Furthermore, concomitant administration of vitamins E plus C significantly prevented the increase of lipid peroxidation, as well as the inhibition of Na(+),K(+)-ATPase activity caused by proline. We did not observe any change in levels of Na(+),K(+)-ATPase mRNA transcripts after chronic exposure to proline and vitamins E plus C. These findings provide insights into the mechanisms through which proline exerts its effects on brain function and suggest that treatment with antioxidants may be beneficial to treat neurological dysfunctions present in hyperprolinemic patients.

Usefulness and Applicability of the Revised Dengue Case Classification by Disease: Multi-centre Study in 18 Countries

BMC Infectious Diseases. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21510901

In view of the long term discussion on the appropriateness of the dengue classification into dengue fever (DF), dengue haemorrhagic fever (DHF) and dengue shock syndrome (DSS), the World Health Organization (WHO) has outlined in its new global dengue guidelines a revised classification into levels of severity: dengue fever with an intermediary group of "dengue fever with warning sings", and severe dengue. The objective of this paper was to compare the two classification systems regarding applicability in clinical practice and surveillance, as well as user-friendliness and acceptance by health staff.

[Latex-induced Anaphylactic Reaction in a Patient Undergoing Open Appendectomy. Case Report]

Revista Brasileira De Anestesiologia. May-Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21596197

Despite the increase of latex allergy in general population, severe anaphylactic events during some surgical procedures are still rare; however, they are associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up of patients affected by this event represent a challenge for anesthesiologists. The objective of this report was to describe a case of severe latex induced anaphylactic reaction and discuss its diagnosis and treatment.

Malaria Chemoprophylaxis Recommendations for Immigrants to Europe, Visiting Relatives and Friends--a Delphi Method Study

Malaria Journal. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21599909

Numbers of travellers visiting friends and relatives (VFRs) from Europe to malaria endemic countries are increasing and include long-term and second generation immigrants, who represent the major burden of malaria cases imported back into Europe. Most recommendations for malaria chemoprophylaxis lack a solid evidence base, and often fail to address the cultural, social and economic needs of VFRs.

The Role of Nucleus Accumbens and Dorsolateral Striatal D2 Receptors in Active Avoidance Conditioning

Neurobiology of Learning and Memory. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21619938

The role of dopamine (DA) in rewarding motivated actions is well established but its role in learning how to avoid aversive events is still controversial. Here we tested the role of D2-like DA receptors in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) and the dorsolateral striatum (DLS) of rats in the learning and performance of conditioned avoidance responses (CAR). Adult male Wistar rats received systemic, intra-NAc or intra-DLS (pre- or post-training) administration of a D2-like receptor agonist (quinpirole) or antagonist ((-)sulpiride) and were given two sessions in the two-way active avoidance task. The main effects observed were: (i) sulpiride and lower (likely pre-synaptic) doses of quinpirole decreased the number of CARs and increased the number of escape failures; (ii) higher doses of quinpirole (likely post-synaptic) increased inter-trial crossings and failures; (iii) pre-training administration of sulpiride decreased the number of CARs in both training and test sessions when infused into the NAc, but this effect was observed only in the test session when it was infused into the DLS; (iv) post-training administration of sulpiride decreased CARs in the test session when infused into the NAc but not DLS. These findings suggest that activation of D2 receptors in the NAc is critical for fast adaptation to responding to unconditioned and conditioned aversive stimuli while activation of these receptors in the DLS is needed for a slower learning of how to respond to the same stimuli based on previous experiences.

Improved SHSAW Transduction Efficiency Using Grating and Uniform Electrode Guiding

IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control. May, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21622064

Pure shear-horizontal surface acoustic wave (SHSAW) devices have been increasingly considered for liquidphase and biosensing applications because of their ability to operate under liquid-loaded conditions and intrinsic sensitivity to mass, stiffness, viscosity, and electrical perturbations occurring at the device/fluid interface. Typically, the SHSAW is weakly guided by a free surface boundary condition (BC) or may not even exist for some materials and orientations, such as the quartz ST-90° orientation considered in this work. For a surrounding free surface BC, the interdigital transducer (IDT) typically generates strong shear-horizontal bulk acoustic waves (SHBAWs) relative to SHSAW. For that reason, guiding structures, e.g., dense and/or thick electrodes in periodic or uniform configurations, are incorporated into the design and placed between IDTs in delay-line devices to increase the ratio of transduced SHSAW power to IDT input power, ηSHSAW. The degree of ηSHSAW improvement depends on the thickness, composition, and geometry of the guiding structure. In previous work, the authors evaluated ηSHSAW using hybrid finite and boundary element method (FEM/BEM) models, but were limited to cases of stress-free or finite-thickness-grating surrounding surfaces. This work extends the analysis to the important boundary condition case of uniform finite-thickness electrode guiding, which is typically employed in liquid-phase and biosensor applications. To integrate the uniform electrode guiding structure with the SHSAW device analysis, a combined finite-length uniform electrode structure followed by an additional quarter-wavelength electrode was considered. In this work, it is shown that adjusting the quarter-wavelength electrode's film thickness and length allows cancellation of the SHSAW reflection from the edge discontinuity. As a result, the finite-length uniform guiding electrode can be treated as if it extends to infinity, and ηSHSAW can be easily obtained. In addition, the finite thickness of all electrodes is considered in the calculations. To verify the model, an IDT with uniform guiding electrodes was simulated and compared with the experimental results of a fabricated and tested device. The simulations predict SHSAW excitation directivity of 9 dB by the IDT, which is experimentally confirmed to within 0.8 dB.

Rheumatoid Arthritis and Metabolic Syndrome

Revista Brasileira De Reumatologia. May-Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21625814

In the past 20 years, the life expectancy of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) has been shown to be reduced by three to ten years as compared to that of the general population. Currently, cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the major cause of death in patients with RA, and acute myocardial infarction can be up to four times more frequent in these patients. The autoimmune systemic inflammatory response, along with the presence of metabolic syndrome (MetS), doubles the risk for fatal or non-fatal CVD and coronary atherosclerosis, regardless of age and sex. Rheumatoid arthritis has been associated with increased prevalence of MetS, but its role in the different characteristics of the disease, such as disease duration, activity, and treatment with glucocorticoids, is not well defined. This study aimed at reviewing the prevalence of MetS and the factors implicated in the development of atherosclerosis in RA patients, assessing the clinical aspects of RA and its association with the development of MetS.

Serum Vitamins in Adult Patients with Short Bowel Syndrome Receiving Intermittent Parenteral Nutrition

JPEN. Journal of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21628608

Short bowel syndrome (SBS) occurs after massive intestinal resection, and parenteral nutrition (PN) therapy may be necessary even after a period of adaptation. The purpose of this study was to determine the vitamin status in adults with SBS receiving intermittent PN.

Aging and Calorie Restriction Modulate Yeast Redox State, Oxidized Protein Removal, and the Ubiquitin-proteasome System

Free Radical Biology & Medicine. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21684330

The ubiquitin-proteasome system governs the half-life of most cellular proteins. Calorie restriction (CR) extends the maximum life span of a variety of species and prevents oxidized protein accumulation. We studied the effects of CR on the ubiquitin-proteasome system and protein turnover in aging Saccharomyces cerevisiae. CR increased chronological life span as well as proteasome activity compared to control cells. The levels of protein carbonyls, a marker of protein oxidation, and those of polyubiquitinated proteins were modulated by CR. Controls, but not CR cells, exhibited a significant increase in oxidized proteins. In keeping with decreased proteasome activity, polyubiquitinated proteins were increased in young control cells compared to time-matched CR cells, but were profoundly decreased in aged control cells despite decreased proteasomal activity. This finding is related to a decreased polyubiquitination ability due to the impairment of the ubiquitin-activating enzyme in aged control cells, probably related to a more oxidative microenvironment. CR preserves the ubiquitin-proteasome system activity. Overall, we found that aging and CR modulate many aspects of protein modification and turnover.

Thermal Rate Constant Calculation of the NF + F Reactive System Multiple Arrangements

The Journal of Physical Chemistry. A. Jul, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21692529

In this work we analyzed the multiple channels of the reaction NF+F through the evaluation of thermal rate constants with both Wigner and Eckart tunneling corrections. Minimum energy paths and intrinsic reaction coordinates of the systems were obtained and accurately studied in order to ensure the consistency of our results. Specifically, we investigated the NF + F = N + F(2), NF + F = NF + F, and NF(2) = NF + F, reactive systems. As experimental data are available for the latter reaction, we were able to conclude that our thermal rate constants are in agreement for a wide range of temperatures. The here performed study is relevant to the understanding of the decomposition process of nitrogen trifluoride (NF(3)).

Development of an Animal Model for Chronic Mild Hyperhomocysteinemia and Its Response to Oxidative Damage

International Journal of Developmental Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the International Society for Developmental Neuroscience. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21704148

The purpose of this study was to develop a chronic chemically induced model of mild hyperhomocysteinemia in adult rats. We produced levels of Hcy in the blood (30μM), comparable to those considered a risk factor for the development of neurological and cardiovascular diseases, by injecting homocysteine subcutaneously (0.03μmol/g of body weight) twice a day, from the 30th to the 60th postpartum day. Controls received saline in the same volumes. Using this model, we evaluated the effect of chronic administration of homocysteine on redox status in the blood and cerebral cortex of adult rats. Reactive oxygen species and thiobarbituric acid reactive substances were significantly increased in the plasma and cerebral cortex, while nitrite levels were reduced in the cerebral cortex, but not in the plasma, of rats subjected to chronic mild hyperhomocysteinemia. Homocysteine was also seen to disrupt enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidant defenses in the blood and cerebral cortex of rats. Since experimental animal models are useful for understanding the pathophysiology of human diseases, the present model of mild hyperhomocysteinemia may be useful for the investigation of additional mechanisms involved in tissue alterations caused by homocysteine.

[The Meaning of Health in Sexual Relations According to Women Treated Under the Unified National Health System in Natal, Rio Grande Do Norte State, Brazil]

Cadernos De Saúde Pública / Ministério Da Saúde, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Escola Nacional De Saúde Pública. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21710007

The aim of this article is to discuss the social representations of "health in sexual relations" as reported by women treated under the Unified National Health System (SUS) in Natal, Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil. A total of 150 women were tested using the free word recall test, with "health in sexual relations" as the stimulus. Women were also asked about their sources of information on the subject. The results were obtained with content analysis and the EVOC software. We identified three representational dimensions: prevention, relationship with the partner, and quality of life. The central nucleus of social representation consisted of the elements "prevention" and "condoms". Likely sources for representation were television, health services, and dialogue with family members and partners. Representations were composed of concepts related to prevention, a good partner relationship, and overall well-being. The results illustrate the need to expand women's sexual health aspects that are considered relevant by the health system.

Chronic Hyperhomocysteinemia Induces Oxidative Damage in the Rat Lung

Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21717134

Tissue accumulation of homocysteine occurs in classical homocystinuria, a metabolic disease characterized biochemically by cystathionine β-synthase deficiency. Vascular manifestations such as myocardial infarction, cerebral thrombosis, hepatic steatosis, and pulmonary embolism are common in this disease and poorly understood. In this study, we investigated the effect of chronic hyperhomocysteinemia on some parameters of oxidative stress (thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances, protein carbonyl content, 2',7'-dichlorofluorescein fluorescence assay, and total radical-trapping antioxidant potent) and activities of antioxidant enzymes (superoxide dismutase, catalase, and glutathione peroxidase) in the rat lung. Reduced glutathione content and glucose 6-phosphate dehydrogenase activity, as well as nitrite levels, were also evaluated. Wistar rats received daily subcutaneous injections of Hcy (0.3-0.6 μmol/g body weight) from the 6th to the 28th days-of-age and the control group received saline. One and 12 h after the last injection, rats were killed and the lungs collected. Hyperhomocysteinemia increased lipid peroxidation and oxidative damage to protein, and disrupted antioxidant defenses (enzymatic and non-enzymatic) in the lung of rats, characterizing a reliable oxidative stress. In contrast, this amino acid did not alter nitrite levels. Our findings showed a consistent profile of oxidative stress in the lung of rats, elicited by homocysteine, which could explain, at least in part, the mechanisms involved in the lung damage that is present in some homocystinuric patients.

Trisomy 13 (Patau Syndrome) and Craniosynostosis

American Journal of Medical Genetics. Part A. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21739580

Trypanosome Prereplication Machinery: a Potential New Target for an Old Problem

Enzyme Research. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21755041

Approximately ten million people suffer from Chagas disease worldwide, caused by Trypanosoma cruzi, with the disease burden predominately focused in Latin America. Sleeping sickness is another serious health problem, caused by Trypanosoma brucei, especially in sub-Saharan countries. Unfortunately, the drugs currently available to treat these diseases have toxic effects and are not effective against all disease phases or parasite strains. Therefore, there is a clear need for the development of novel drugs and drug targets to treat these diseases. We propose the trypanosome prereplication machinery component, Orc1/Cdc6, as a potential target for drug development. In trypanosomes, Orc1/Cdc6 is involved in nuclear DNA replication, and, despite its involvement in such a conserved process, Orc1/Cdc6 is distinct from mammalian Orc1 and Cdc6 proteins. Moreover, RNAi-mediated silencing of trypanosome Orc1/Cdc6 expression in T. brucei decreased cell survival, indicating that Orc1/Cdc6 is critical for trypanosome survival.

Synthesis, Evaluation Against Leishmania Amazonensis and Cytotoxicity Assays in Macrophages of Sixteen New Congeners Morita-Baylis-Hillman Adducts

European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21775030

We report the design, synthesis, in vitro evaluation against Leishmania amazonensis (IC(50)), cytotoxicity assays in macrophages (CC(50)), and selectivity index (SICC(50)/IC(50)) of sixteen new congeners aromatic Morita-Baylis-Hillman adducts 1-16. The 1-16 were prepared in good to excellent yields (58%-97%) from the "one pot" Morita-Baylis-Hillman Reaction between the aldehydes 29-36 and the acrylates 27 or 28 under DABCO as promoter. The MBHA 2-[Hydroxy(2-nitrophenyl)propyl] propanoate (1, IC(50) = 7.52 μg/mL or 28.38 μM; CC(50) = 35.77 μg/mL or 134.98 μM; SI = 4.75) and 2-[Hydroxy(2-nitrophenyl)hydroxyethyl] propanoate (9, IC(50) = 5.48 μg/mL or 20.52 μM; CC(50) = 29.81 μg/mL or 111.64c μM and, SI = 5.43) were the most effective and safe evaluated compounds.

Recovery of Platinum, Tin and Indium from Spent Catalysts in Chloride Medium Using Strong Basic Anion Exchange Resins

Journal of Hazardous Materials. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21784579

This work describes a route for platinum recovery from spent commercial Pt and PtSnIn/Al(2)O(3) catalysts using strong basic mesoporous and macroporous anion exchange resins (Cl(-) form). The catalysts were leached with aqua regia (75 °C, 20-25 min). Platinum adsorption was influenced by the presence of other metals which form chlorocomplexes (tin, indium) and also base metals (aluminum). However, it was possible to overcome this fact by a sequential desorption procedure. Aluminum was selectively removed from the resins by elution with 3 mol L(-1) HCl. Platinum was desorbed passing 1 mol L(-1) Na(2)S(2)O(3) (pH 9). Tin was removed by elution with 0.1 mol L(-1) ascorbic acid. Indium was removed using 0.1 mol L(-1) EDTA as eluent. Desorption efficiency exceeded 99% for all metals. Metals were recovered in high yields (>98 wt%).

Physical Exercise Reverses Cognitive Impairment in Rats Subjected to Experimental Hyperprolinemia

Neurochemical Research. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21792675

This study investigated whether physical exercise would reverse proline-induced performance deficits in water maze tasks, as well as its effects on brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) immunocontent and brain acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity in Wistar rats. Proline administration followed partial time (6th-29th day of life) or full time (6th-60th day of life) protocols. Treadmill exercise was performed from 30th to 60th day of life, when behavioral testing was started. After that, animals were sacrificed for BDNF and AChE determination. Results show that proline impairs cognitive performance, decreases BDNF in cerebral cortex and hippocampus and increases AChE activity in hippocampus. All reported effects were prevented by exercise. These results suggest that cognitive, spatial learning/memory, deficits caused by hyperprolinemia may be associated, at least in part, to the decrease in BDNF levels and to the increase in AChE activity, as well as support the role of physical exercise as a potential neuroprotective strategy.

Modified Native Electrophoresis Protocol for the Solubilization and Separation of Mitochondrial Protein Complexes

Analytical Biochemistry. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21802398

To isolate mitochondrial complexes, we have combined elements from the classic Laemmli protocol and blue native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (BN-PAGE) methods to develop a straightforward modified native electrophoresis protocol. This modified protocol presented good resolution for native electrophoresis of inner mitochondrial membrane proteins, where bands were easily visualized with no leftover stain or gel lanes overlap. Enzymatic tests revealed that complexes I and V remain active in the gel. This protocol, designed to overcome specific limitations of the standard protocols, provides a potential methodology to study membrane proteins in their functional form.

Long-term Intermittent Feeding, but Not Caloric Restriction, Leads to Redox Imbalance, Insulin Receptor Nitration, and Glucose Intolerance

Free Radical Biology & Medicine. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21816219

Calorie restriction is a dietary intervention known to improve redox state, glucose tolerance, and animal life span. Other interventions have been adopted as study models for caloric restriction, including nonsupplemented food restriction and intermittent, every-other-day feedings. We compared the short- and long-term effects of these interventions to ad libitum protocols and found that, although all restricted diets decrease body weight, intermittent feeding did not decrease intra-abdominal adiposity. Short-term calorie restriction and intermittent feeding presented similar results relative to glucose tolerance. Surprisingly, long-term intermittent feeding promoted glucose intolerance, without a loss in insulin receptor phosphorylation. Intermittent feeding substantially increased insulin receptor nitration in both intra-abdominal adipose tissue and muscle, a modification associated with receptor inactivation. All restricted diets enhanced nitric oxide synthase levels in the insulin-responsive adipose tissue and skeletal muscle. However, whereas calorie restriction improved tissue redox state, food restriction and intermittent feedings did not. In fact, long-term intermittent feeding resulted in largely enhanced tissue release of oxidants. Overall, our results show that restricted diets are significantly different in their effects on glucose tolerance and redox state when adopted long-term. Furthermore, we show that intermittent feeding can lead to oxidative insulin receptor inactivation and glucose intolerance.

COX-2 Inhibition Does Not Reverse the Increased Sympathetic Modulation in MSG Obese Rats

Autonomic Neuroscience : Basic & Clinical. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21824825

We evaluate the effects of chronic treatment with celecoxib, a cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) inhibitor, on blood pressure (BP) and heart rate variability (HRV) in obese rats induced by neonatal monosodium glutamate (MSG). The animals were treated with celecoxib or saline for 30 days (from the 60th to the 90th day of age). On the 90th day, the MSG obesity induced an increase in the low-frequency (LF) component (CTR=5.69±18.30ms(2), MSG=38.49±6.27ms(2)) and a decrease in the high-frequency (HF) component of HRV (CTR=71.48±6.22ms(2), MSG=50.94±7.03ms(2)), which were unchanged by celecoxib treatment. We suggest that HRV in MSG obesity involves a greater sympathetic modulation not related with COX-2 products.

Myocardial Perfusion Imaging is a Strong Predictor of Death in Women

JACC. Cardiovascular Imaging. Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21835380

We sought to assess the prognostic value and risk classification improvement using contemporary single-photon emission computed tomography myocardial perfusion imaging (SPECT-MPI) to predict all-cause mortality.

Development and Validation of a Microsimulation Economic Model to Evaluate the Disease Burden Associated with Smoking and the Cost-effectiveness of Tobacco Control Interventions in Latin America

Value in Health : the Journal of the International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research. Jul-Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21839900

To describe the development and validation of a health economic model (HEM) to address the tobacco disease burden and the cost-effectiveness of smoking cessation interventions (SCI) in seven Latin American countries.

Azaphenanthrene Alkaloids with Antitumoral Activity from Anaxagorea Dolichocarpa Sprague & Sandwith (Annonaceae)

Molecules (Basel, Switzerland). 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21860364

Phytochemical investigation of Anaxagorea dolichocarpa Sprague & Sandwith led to isolation of three azaphenanthrene alkaloids: eupolauramine, sampangine and imbiline 1. Their chemical structures were established on the basis of spectroscopic data from IR, HR-ESI-MS, NMR (including 2D experiments) and comparison with the literature. Sampangine and imbiline 1 are being described in the Anaxagorea genus for the first time. Eupolauramine and sampangine show concentration-dependent antitumoral activity in leukemic cells K562 with IC(50) of 18.97 and 10.95 µg/mL, respectively.

[The Progesterone Receptor Gene Polymorphism As Factor of Risk for the Preterm Delivery]

Revista Brasileira De Ginecologia E Obstetrícia : Revista Da Federação Brasileira Das Sociedades De Ginecologia E Obstetrícia. Jun, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21877015

to investigate the association between gene polymorphism of the progesterone receptor (PROGINS) and the risk of premature birth.

In Vivo Induction of Tr1 Cells Via Mucosal Dendritic Cells and AHR Signaling

PloS One. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21886804

Type 1 regulatory T (Tr1) cells, characterized by the secretion of high levels of the anti-inflammatory cytokine interleukin-10 (IL-10), play an important role in the regulation of autoimmune diseases and transplantation. However, effective strategies that specifically induce Tr1 cells in vivo are limited. Furthermore, the pathways controlling the induction of these cells in vivo are not well understood.

Clinical Manifestations of Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 in the Ambulatory Setting

Journal of Infection in Developing Countries. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21918307

In June 2009, the World Health Organization declared an influenza pandemic associated with the pandemic (H1N1) 2009 strain. It was summer in the northern hemisphere, and therefore travelling and vacation time, which also provided an increased opportunity for the dissemination of respiratory diseases.

Clinical Evidence for the Activity of Tetrahydroxypropyl Ethylenediamine (THPE), a New Anti-aging Active Cosmetic

Journal of Drugs in Dermatology : JDD. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21968659

BACKGROUND/ OBJECTIVES: The cellular surface modification of superficial epidermal keratinocytes can induce immediate skin tensioning effects and may improve signs of skin aging. Tetrahydroxypropyl ethylenediamine (THPE) is an active that has been described to induce keratinocytes' morphological changes in vitro. We conducted an in vivo study to assess anti-aging clinical benefits of a THPE-containing product.

Separable Fragments and Membrane Tethering of Arabidopsis RIN4 Regulate Its Suppression of PAMP-triggered Immunity

The Plant Cell. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21984695

RPM1-interacting protein 4 (RIN4) is a multifunctional Arabidopsis thaliana protein that regulates plant immune responses to pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) and bacterial type III effector proteins (T3Es). RIN4, which is targeted by multiple defense-suppressing T3Es, provides a mechanistic link between PAMP-triggered immunity (PTI) and effector-triggered immunity and effector suppression of plant defense. Here we report on a structure-function analysis of RIN4-mediated suppression of PTI. Separable fragments of RIN4, including those produced when the T3E AvrRpt2 cleaves RIN4 and each containing a plant-specific nitrate-induced (NOI) domain, suppress PTI. The N-terminal and C-terminal NOIs each contribute to PTI suppression and are evolutionarily conserved. Native RIN4 is anchored to the plasma membrane by C-terminal acylation. Nonmembrane-tethered derivatives of RIN4 activate a cell death response in wild-type Arabidopsis and are hyperactive PTI suppressors in a mutant background that lacks the cell death response. Our results indicate that RIN4 is a multifunctional suppressor of PTI and that a virulence function of AvrRpt2 may include cleaving RIN4 into active defense-suppressing fragments.

Accuracy of Single-Step Versus 2-Step Double-Mix Impression Technique

ISRN Dentistry. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21991468

Objective. To investigate the accuracy of dies obtained from single-step and 2-step double-mix impressions. Material and Methods. Impressions (n = 10) of a stainless steel die simulating a complete crown preparation were performed using a polyether (Impregum Soft Heavy and Light body) and a vinyl polysiloxane (Perfectim Blue Velvet and Flexi-Velvet) in two consistencies, in one or two (without relief) steps. Accuracy of the stone dies was accessed at a measuring microscope, using a metallic crown with perfect fit to the reference crown preparation. Data were submitted to 2-way ANOVA and Tukey test (α = 0.05). Results. The single-step technique resulted in slightly larger dies, while the 2-step technique without relief produced significantly smaller dies, when compared to the original stainless steel die. Stone dies obtained from 2-step polyether impressions were significantly smaller when compared to dies obtained from 2-step vinyl polysiloxane impressions (Impregum 2-step: -290.94 ± 71.64 μm; Perfectim 2-step: -201.86 ± 28.58 μm). No significant differences were observed in dies obtained from either polyether or vinyl polysiloxane with the single-step technique (Impregum single-step: 63.52 ± 16.60 μm; Perfectim single-step: 79.40 ± 14.11 μm). Conclusion. Higher discrepancies were detected for the 2-step impression technique without relief for the investigated materials.

A Molecular Phylogeny of the Tamarins (genus Saguinus) Based on Five Nuclear Sequence Data from Regions Containing Alu Insertions

American Journal of Physical Anthropology. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 21994015

This study presents a molecular phylogeny of the Saguinus genus, based on the analysis of the DNA sequences of five nuclear loci with Alu insertions in 10 species. The concatenated alignment produced a polytomic arrangement with four main groups, although only two clades-the Amazonian (S. midas, S. niger, and S. bicolor) and the Colombian (S. leucopus and S. oedipus) tamarins-were statistically significant. The emergence of the midas-bicolor clade was estimated at about 5 million years ago (mya), and that of the Colombian clade, at 4.6 mya. The phylogenetic relationships among the mustached tamarins (S. mystax, S. imperator, and S. labiatus) remained unresolved, as did the internal arrangement of the midas group. The lack of a clear consensus on the phylogeny of this group may be related to rapid bursts of evolutionary change within the context of a highly dynamic environment, which may be difficult to resolve using the available quantitative approaches. On the other hand, the discrepancies between mtDNA and nDNA in resolving phylogenies strongly indicate the role of reticulated evolution in the evolutionary history of this group. We hope that the advance of whole genome sequencing technology and increasing information on nuclear markers and SNPs, coupled with a better understanding of the geological phenomena that took place in western Amazonia over the past 20 million years, will shed further light on the phylogenetic history of these New World primates.

Involvement of Mast Cells in a Mouse Model of Postoperative Pain

European Journal of Pharmacology. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22004612

Recent studies have indicated that nearly half of all surgical patients still have inadequate pain relief; therefore, it is becoming increasingly more important to understand the mechanisms involved in postoperative pain in order to be better treated. Previous studies have shown that incisions can cause mast cell degranulation. Thus, the aim of this study was to investigate the involvement of mast cells in a model of postoperative pain in mice. The depletion of mast cell mediators produced by pre-treatment with compound 48/80 (intraplantar ( widely (98 ± 23% of inhibition) and extensively (up to 96 h) prevented postoperative nociception and reduced histamine and serotonin levels (88 ± 4% and 68 ± 10%, respectively) in operated tissue. Furthermore, plantar surgery produced immense mast cell degranulation, as assessed by histology and confirmed by the increased levels of serotonin (three-fold higher) and histamine (fifteen-fold higher) in the perfused tissue, 1h after surgery. Accordingly, pre-treatment with the mast cell membrane stabilizer cromoglycate (200 μg/paw, prevented mechanical allodynia (inhibition of 96 ± 21%) and an increase in histamine (44 ± 10% of inhibition) and serotonin (73 ± 5% of inhibition) levels induced by plantar surgery. Finally, local treatment with H(1) (promethazine, 100 μg/paw,, 5-HT(3) (ondansetron, 10 μg/paw, or 5-HT(2A) (ketanserin, 5 μg/paw, receptor antagonists partially decreased postoperative nociception in mice, but when co-administered together it completely reversed the mechanical allodynia in operated mice. Thus, mast cell activation mechanisms are interesting targets for the development of novel therapies to treat postoperative pain.

In Vitro Rescue of Interspecific Embryos from Elaeis Guineensis X E. Oleifera (Arecaceae)

Revista De Biología Tropical. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22017114

The African oil palm (Elaeis guineensis) is the most effective oil producer in tons per hectare. Nevertheless, its increasing cultivation in Latin America is harmed by the "lethal yellowing". Genetic resistance to this anomaly can be found in the germplasm of American oil palm or caiaué (E. oleifera), a native species from the Amazon rainforest. However, the procedures adopted to induce seeds of E. guineensis to germination frequently result mild for interespecific hybrids. Embryo in vitro cultivation can be a viable option. This work was aimed initially to test liquid MS medium supplemented with different glucose or sucrose concentrations for the in vitro cultivation of zygotic embryos from E. guineensis x E. oleifera controlled pollinations. Additionally we investigated different compost mixtures to acclimatize the regenerated hybrid plantlets. Concentrations of 10, 20 and 30g/L of both sugars were tested on flasks containing five mature zygotic embryos, with 15 repetitions per treatment in a total of 450 explants. The number of embryos displaying shoots and radicles at least 2mm in length per experimental unit was evaluated during phase one of in vitro cultivation. Plantlets displaying shoots and radicles were transferred to phase two of in vitro cultivation and subsequently to acclimatization, under 70% shading with manual water supply. The experiments of acclimatization were conducted with 130 plantlets randomly distributed in pure horticultural compost, 3:1 or 1:1 compost:sand mixtures and each plantlet was defined as an experimental unit. Data were submitted to ANOVA, t test and analyzes of correlation (p < or = 0.05). Highest emergence rates were 97% for shoots and 73% for radicles, observed in MS medium supplemented with 20g/L (110mM) of glucose. This sugar in concentrations of 20 or 30g/L provided balanced shoot/root development, and this was considered one of the reasons for the higher frequency of plantlet establishment. The survival percentage was 55% after the first 43 days of acclimatization and by the fourth month, 66 plants developed simultaneously longer shoot and root systems in pure horticultural compost. In conclusion, radicle development was an impairment to plantlet establishment and was overcame under media with glucose above 110mM. Acclimatization could benefit from an extended period of in vitro development.

Segmental Osteotomy for the Correction of a Malpositioned Single Implant: an 8-year Follow-up

Quintessence International (Berlin, Germany : 1985). Nov-Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22025994

This case report is an 8-year follow-up of a malpositioned single implant, which was treated with segmental osteotomy, to confirm the treatment's characteristics, indications, and advantages. Deep buccal positioning of an endosseous implant placed in the maxillary left central incisor area did not permit acceptable prosthetic rehabilitation, despite its favorable bone insertion with no significant marginal bone loss. The surgical procedure included osteotomy and block movement performed toward the lingual and cervical position, fixed with a provisional prosthesis and miniplates and mini-implants. A connective tissue graft was necessary for esthetics optimization and was performed in a second stage. Advantages including the prevention of alveolar ridge damage, the improvement of gingival contour, and the use of an already integrated implant are presented. Clinically satisfactory hard and soft tissue stability permitted us to consider segmental surgery as a reliable alternative for malpositioned osseointegrated implants.

Use of Molecular Markers in Reciprocal Recurrent Selection of Maize Increases Heterosis Effects

Genetics and Molecular Research : GMR. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22057955

We examined the effect of incorporation of molecular markers on variability between and within populations in order to maximize heterotic effects and longevity of a maize reciprocal recurrent selection program. Molecular variability was quantified by inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers between and within the maize populations Cimmyt and Piranão in the 10th cycle of a reciprocal recurrent selection program. Forty-two S(1) progenies of each population were analyzed, these being families of full-sibs selected according to their agronomic traits. Thirteen primers were selected, which produced 140 bands; 114 of them were polymorphic and 26 monomorphic. Based on UPGMA grouping analysis and by genetic distances, it was possible to identify "contaminant" progenies. These progenies belong to the Piranão or Cimmyt groups, but cluster in the opposite heterotic group. Identification of "contaminant" progenies is relevant for selection, because, besides identifying genotypes that should be eliminated at the recombination stage, it allows increased heterosis expression in crosses between more genetically distinct individuals. After the elimination of the "contaminant" progenies and those that were allocated between the heterotic groups, a new statistical analysis was carried out, which demonstrated increased genetic distances between the populations. It was concluded that the application of molecular markers in reciprocal recurrent selection programs allows the optimization of the monitoring of genetic variability within and between populations, favoring recombination between more distant progenies, besides ensuring increased longevity of the reciprocal recurrent selection program.

Osteoconductive Capacity of Hydroxyapatite Implanted into the Skull of Diabetics

The Journal of Craniofacial Surgery. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22067859

Diabetes mellitus can cause various diseases, including loss of bone mineral density as a characteristic manifestation of osteoporosis. In this condition, bone is more vulnerable to pathologic fractures that can be treated by implantation of biomaterial grafts. The aim of this study was to evaluate the osteogenic capacity of hydroxyapatite implanted into bone defects in the skull of nonobese diabetic mice. Fifteen nonobese diabetic mice were divided into 3 groups: control (nondiabetic), spontaneously diabetic, and spontaneously diabetic receiving insulin replacement applied subcutaneously into the dorsum. Defects were created experimentally in the skull with a surgical bur and filled with hydroxyapatite granules. The animals were killed 4 weeks after surgery, and samples were obtained for analysis. Quantitative methods were used for measurement of the new bone formation. Data were analyzed by analysis of variance followed by the Tukey test (P < 0.05). Radiographic results showed good radiopacity of the hydroxyapatite; however, radiolucent spots were seen between the hydroxyapatite granules in the diabetic groups, indicating infiltration of connective tissue. Microscopic results showed projections of newly formed bone from the margin of bone defect toward the implant. The quantity of newly formed bone was significantly higher (P < 0.05) than that observed in the diabetic groups. The recipient area of diabetic groups contained a larger amount of connective tissue as demonstrated by radiographic analyses. In conclusion, the osteogenesis guided by the properties of hydroxyapatite may even occur in bone suffering from the effects of diabetes, but the quantity of newly formed bone is lower, and the process is slower.

A Novel Rickettsia Infecting Amblyomma Dubitatum Ticks in Brazil

Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22108014

A total of 130 adult free-living ticks of Amblyomma cajennense and 9 free-living Amblyomma dubitatum were collected in the surroundings of the Pampulha Lake, within Belo Horizonte city, state of Minas Gerais, south-eastern Brazil. Each adult tick was tested for rickettsial infection by PCR protocols targeting the rickettsial genes gltA, htrA, and ompA. All the 130 A. cajennense ticks were negative by PCR. In contrast, all 9 A. dubitatum ticks were shown to contain rickettsial DNA. PCR products were sequenced, generating identical sequences for each gene among the 9 ticks, which were shown to contain a novel agent, here designated as Rickettsia sp. strain Pampulha. Phylogenetic analyses inferred from the 3 rickettsial genes (gltA, htrA, ompA) showed that Rickettsia sp. strain Pampulha segregated in the same cluster with R. tamurae, R. monacensis, and several other unclassified rickettsial strains; however, strain Pampulha is a unique Rickettsia strain for the New World, since its closest relatives, according to 3 genes (gltA, htrA, and ompA), are all from the Old World. Because A. dubitatum eventually bites humans, further studies are necessary to determine the potential pathogenicity of Rickettsia sp. strain Pampulha to humans.

Incidence of Infectious Complications in Hip and Knee Arthroplasties in Rheumatoid Arthritis and Osteoarthritis Patients

Revista Brasileira De Reumatologia. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22124594

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is one of the major indications of total hip (THA) or knee (TKA) arthroplasty. International studies have suggested that RA is a risk factor for prosthesis infections.

[Spatial Patterns of Tuberculosis and Its Association with Living Conditions in the City of Ribeirão Preto in the State of São Paulo]

Ciência & Saúde Coletiva. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22124919

This study, with a hybrid, ecological and time-tendency design, sought to establish the relation between the spatial correlation in the occurrence of new cases of TB in the year 2000 and to ascertain the association between living conditions and TB distribution in Ribeirão Preto, State of São Paulo, between 2000 and 2006. The thematic maps were elaborated with the help of MapInfo 7.5 and spatial statistical analysis using Spring 4.3. For the remaining calculations, SPSS 10.0 was used. The indices with the highest factor loads were family heads earning 2 minimum wages or less and with less than 3 years of education. The comparison of the living conditions and TB maps revealed a relation between TB and poorer areas in the city, as the incidence rate in the cluster with poor living conditions was 49.9/100,000 inhabitants. The gross Chance Ratio, considering the cluster with the high living conditions as a reference, proved the association between TB and living conditions and 3.30 for the low living conditions cluster (CR=3.30; CI95%: 1.90-5.70). The city's stratification according to living conditions and incidence of TB allowed for the identification of risk areas, providing input for the local TB Control Program.

Brominated Compounds from Marine Sponges of the Genus Aplysina and a Compilation of Their 13C NMR Spectral Data

Marine Drugs. 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22163189

Aplysina is the best representative genus of the family Aplysinidae. Halogenated substances are its main class of metabolites. These substances contribute greatly to the chemotaxonomy and characterization of the sponges belonging to this genus. Due to their pharmacological activities, these alkaloids are of special interest. The chemistry of halogenated substances and of the alkaloids has long been extensively studied in terrestrial organisms, while the number of marine organisms studied has just started to increase in the last decades. This review describes 101 halogenated substances from 14 species of Aplysina from different parts of the world. These substances can be divided into the following classes: bromotyramines (A), cavernicolins (B), hydroverongiaquinols (C), bromotyrosineketals (D), bromotyrosine lactone derivatives (E), oxazolidones (F), spiroisoxazolines (G), verongiabenzenoids (H), verongiaquinols (I), and dibromocyclohexadienes (J). A compilation of their (13)C NMR data is also part of the review. For this purpose 138 references were consulted.

Exciton Dissociation and Charge Carrier Recombination Processes in Organic Semiconductors

The Journal of Chemical Physics. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22168721

Exciton dissociation and charge recombination processes in organic semiconductors, with thermal effects taken into account, are described in this paper. Here, we analyzed the mechanisms of polaron-excitons dissociation into free charge carriers and the consequent recombination of those carriers under thermal effects on two parallel π-conjugated polymers chains electronically coupled. Our results suggest that exciton dissociation in a single molecule give rise to localized, polaron-like charge carrier. Besides, we concluded that in the case of interchain processes, the bimolecular polaron recombination does not lead to an usual exciton state. Rather, this type of recombination leads to an oscillating dipole between the two chains. The recombination time obtained here for these processes are in agreement with the experimental results. Finally, our results show that temperature effects are essential to the relaxation process leading to polaron formation in a single chain, as in the absence of temperature, this process was not observed. In the case of two chains, we conclude that temperature effects also help the bimolecular recombination process, as observed experimentally.

Pharmacokinetics of Lidocaine and Its Active Metabolite Monoethylglycinexylidide After a Single Intravenous Administration in Chickens (Gallus Domesticus) Anesthetized with Isoflurane

Journal of Veterinary Pharmacology and Therapeutics. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22212047

Studies of Micronuclei and Other Nuclear Abnormalities in Red Blood Cells of Colossoma Macropomum Exposed to Methylmercury

Genetics and Molecular Biology. Oct, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22215976

The frequencies of micronuclei (MN) and morphological nuclear abnormalities (NA) in erythrocytes in the peripheral blood of tambaqui (Colossoma macropomum), treated with 2 mg.L(-1) methylmercury (MeHg), were analyzed. Two groups (nine specimens in each) were exposed to MeHg for different periods (group A - 24 h; group B - 120 h). A third group served as negative control (group C, untreated; n = 9). Although, when compared to the control group there were no significant differences in MN frequency in the treated groups, for NA, the differences between the frequencies of group B (treated for 120 h) and the control group were extremely significant (p < 0.02), thus demonstrating the potentially adverse effects of MeHg on C. macropomum erythrocytes after prolonged exposure.

Antimicrobial Activity of Doripenem Against Gram-negative Pathogens: Results from INVITA-A-DORI Brazilian Study

The Brazilian Journal of Infectious Diseases : an Official Publication of the Brazilian Society of Infectious Diseases. Nov-Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22218508

In vitro activity of doripenem and comparator antimicrobial agents was evaluated against Gram-negative bacilli recently isolated from Brazilian private hospitals that were enrolled in the INVITA-A-DORI Brazilian Study. A total of 805 unique Gram-negative bacilli were collected from patients hospitalized at 18 medical centers between May/08 and March/09. Each hospital was asked to submit 50 single Gram-negative bacilli isolated from blood, lower respiratory tract or intraabdominal secretions. Bacterial identification was confirmed and antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed using Clinical Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI) microdilution method at a central laboratory. CLSI M100-S21 (2011) or US-FDA package insert criteria (tigecycline) was used for interpretation of the antimicrobial susceptibility results. Doripenem was as active as meropenem and more active than imipenem against E. coli and K. pneumoniae isolates. A total of 50.0% of Enterobacter spp. isolates were resistant to ceftazidime but 85.7% of them were inhibited at doripenem MICs < 1 µg/mL. Polymyxin B was the only agent to show potent activity against Acinetobacter spp. (MIC50/90, < 0.5/1 µg/mL) and P. aeruginosa (MIC50/90, 1/2 µg/mL). Although high rates of imipenem (53.1%) and meropenem (44.5%) resistance were detected among P. aeruginosa, doripenem showed MIC50 of 16 µg/mL against imipenem-resistant P. aeruginosa and inhibited a greater number of imipenem-resistant P. aeruginosa (10.5%) at MIC values of < 4 µg/mL than did meropenem (0.0%). In this study, doripenem showed similar in vitro activity to that of meropenem and retained some activity against imipenem-resistant P. aeruginosa isolated from Brazilian medical centers.

[The Efficacy of Three Hand Asepsis Techniques Using Chlorhexidine Gluconate (CHG 2%)]

Revista Da Escola De Enfermagem Da U S P. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22241204

The scrubbing of hands and forearms using antiseptic agents has been the standard pre-operative procedure to prevent surgical site infection. With the introduction of antiseptic agents, the need to use brushes for pre-operative disinfection has been questioned and it has been recommended that the procedure be abandoned due to the injuries it may cause to the skin. With the purpose to provide the foundations for the efficacy of pre-operative asepsis without using brushes or sponges, the objective of this study was to evaluate three methods of pre-operative asepsis using an antimicrobial agent containing chlorhexidine gluconate - CHG 2%; hand-scrubbing with brush (HSB), hand-scrubbing with sponge (HSS), and hand-rubbing with the antiseptic agent (HRA) only. A comparative crossover study was carried with 29 healthcare providers. Antimicrobial efficacy was measured using the glove-juice method before and after each tested method. Statistical analyses showed there were no significant differences regarding the number of colony-forming units when comparing HRA, HSB, and HSS techniques (p=0.148), which theoretically disregards the need to continue using brushes or sponges for hand asepsis.

[The Woman and the Use of Alcohol]

Revista Brasileira De Ginecologia E Obstetrícia : Revista Da Federação Brasileira Das Sociedades De Ginecologia E Obstetrícia. Nov, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22267109

[Cow's Milk Protein Allergy: a Challenging Diagnosis]

Acta Médica Portuguesa. Jul-Aug, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22521006

Cow's Milk Protein Allergy (CMPA) is the most common food allergy in infants. It can manifest itself through a wide variety of symptoms depending on the type of immune response is IgE or non-IgE mediated. In most cases acquisition of tolerance to cow's milk protein (CMP) occurs until the second year of life.

[Transfusion-transmitted Protozoal Infections: What is the Risk in Non-endemic Countries?]

Acta Médica Portuguesa. Dec, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22863498

Protozoal infections that are efficiently transmitted by blood transfusion include Malaria, Chagas Disease, African Trypanosomiasis, Leshmaniasis, Toxoplasmosis and Babesiosis. With exception of Toxoplasmosis and Leishmaniasis, these diseases are endemic in mainly tropical low income countries and, in non-endemic countries like Portugal, the reported cases are imported from these endemic areas by travelers or immigrants. Globalization, with increasing travel and immigration poses the risk of exposition to these infectious agents and raises the issue of possible transmission by blood transfusion. According to recommendations of the Council of Europe, strategies to prevent the transmission of these infections by blood transfusion have been implemented. Given that the risk is introduced by a specific group of donors, travelers or immigrants from endemic areas, the main strategy to prevent this transmission depends on the identification of these groups of donors using questionnaires during the pre-donation procedures. Additional measures, like serological testing and pathogen inactivation procedures, when available, contribute not only to reduce the risk of transmission but also to avoid unnecessary rejections.

Hepatozoon Spp. (Apicomplexa: Hepatozoidae) Infection and Selected Hematological Values of the Neotropical Rattlesnake, Crotalus Durissus Collilineatus (Linnaeus, 1758) (Serpentes: Viperidae), from Brazil

Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine : Official Publication of the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians. Sep, 2011  |  Pubmed ID: 22950311

This study aims to establish the hematological values of Crotalus durissus collilineatus snakes captured in Brazil as well as to verify the effects of hematozoan infection on these snakes. Eighty-three blood samples were drawn from C. d. collilineatus specimens for analysis. The sample set was composed of 30 males and 30 females, recently caught from the wild, and 11 males and 12 females bred in captivity. Blood samples were used to determine red blood cell counts, white blood cell counts, thrombocyte counts, hematocrit values, hemoglobin concentration, and total plasma protein. Blood smears were used to diagnose Hepatozoon spp. infection and to calculate the parasitic load in the sample as well as the percentage of immature red cells. Results obtained for the wild-caught animals, with and without parasites, were compared among themselves and with the values obtained for the captive-bred animals. Hematological values for C. durissus were established. Wild-caught snakes had an infection rate of 38.3%, while no Hepatozoon sp. infection was detected in the captive-bred animals. The snakes which were not infected by the Hepatozoon sp. exhibited average weight, length, and weight-length ratios higher than those of the infected animals. An increase in immature red cells was noted in the Hepatozoon-infected snakes.

Expression of Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and P53 in Neighboring Invasive and in Situ Components of Breast Tumors

Acta Histochemica. May, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21683430

The aim of the study was to assess the relationship between the expression of COX-2 and p53, hormone receptors and HER-2 in the in situ (DCIS) and invasive components of ductal carcinomas (IDC) of the same breast. The expression of COX-2, p53, and hormone receptors was assessed in 87 cases of IDC with contiguous areas of DCIS. Results showed that there was no difference in COX-2 expression comparing the in situ and invasive components of the tumors. In the in situ component, there was a statistically borderline increase in p53 expression in tumors that also expressed COX-2. ER-positive specimens were more common in the group of tumors that expressed COX-2 in the invasive component. From this study we conclude that the expression of COX-2 was similar in the in situ and invasive components of the breast carcinomas. COX-2 positivity was marginally related with the expression of p53 in the in situ components, and with the ER expression in the invasive components.

Impact of Renal Vein Invasion and Fat Invasion in PT3a Renal Cell Carcinoma

BJU International. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21711437

• To evaluate the prognostic impact of tumor fat invasion (FI) and renal vein invasion (RVI) in patients with T3a renal cell carcinoma.

Roles of D1-like Dopamine Receptors in the Nucleus Accumbens and Dorsolateral Striatum in Conditioned Avoidance Responses

Psychopharmacology. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21720753

Aversively motivated learning is more poorly understood than appetitively motivated learning in many aspects, including the role of dopamine receptors in different regions of the striatum.

Study of the Osteoconductive Capacity of Hydroxyapatite Implanted into the Femur of Ovariectomized Rats

Microscopy Research and Technique. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21761494

Osteoporosis is a global public health that affects postmenopausal women due to the deficiency of estrogen, a hormone that plays an important role in the microarchitecture of bone tissue. Osteoporosis predisposes to pathological bone fracture that can be repaired by conventional methods. However, depending on the severity and quantity of bone loss, the use of autogenous grafts or biomaterials such as hydroxyapatite might be necessary. The latter has received increasing attention in the medical field because of its good biological properties such as osteoconductivity and biocompatibility with bone tissue. The objective of this study was to evaluate using histologic and radiographic analyses, the osteogenic capacity of hydroxyapatite implanted into the femur of rats with ovariectomy-induced osteoporosis. Eighteen rats were divided into three groups with six animals in each: group nonovariectomized, bilaterally ovariectomized not receiving estrogen replacement therapy, and bilaterally ovariectomized submitted to estrogen replacement therapy. Defects were created experimentally in the distal epiphysis of the femur with a surgical drill and filled with porous hydroxyapatite granules. The animals were sacrificed 8 weeks after surgery. The volume of newly formed bone in the implant area was quantified by morphometrical methods. The results were analyzed by ANOVA followed by the Tukey test (P < 0.05). The hydroxyapatite granules showed good radiopacity. Histological analysis revealed less quantity of newly formed bone in the ovariectomized group not submitted to hormone replacement therapy. In conclusion, bone neoformation can be expected even in bones compromised by estrogen deficiency, but the quantity and velocity of bone formation are lower.

Phylodynamics and Movement of Phycodnaviruses Among Aquatic Environments

The ISME Journal. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21796218

Phycodnaviruses have a significant role in modulating the dynamics of phytoplankton, thereby influencing community structure and succession, nutrient cycles and potentially atmospheric composition because phytoplankton fix about half the carbon dioxide (CO(2)) on the planet, and some algae release dimethylsulphoniopropionate when lysed by viruses. Despite their ecological importance and widespread distribution, relatively little is known about the evolutionary history, phylogenetic relationships and phylodynamics of the Phycodnaviruses from freshwater environments. Herein we provide novel data on Phycodnaviruses from the largest river system on earth--the Amazon Basin--that were compared with samples from different aquatic systems from several places around the world. Based on phylogenetic inference using DNA polymerase (pol) sequences we show the presence of distinct populations of Phycodnaviridae. Preliminary coarse-grained phylodynamics and phylogeographic inferences revealed a complex dynamics characterized by long-term fluctuations in viral population sizes, with a remarkable worldwide reduction of the effective population around 400 thousand years before the present (KYBP), followed by a recovery near to the present time. Moreover, we present evidence for significant viral gene flow between freshwater environments, but crucially almost none between freshwater and marine environments.

Mediterranean Spotted Fever and Encephalitis: a Case Report and Review of the Literature

Journal of Infection and Chemotherapy : Official Journal of the Japan Society of Chemotherapy. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21879306

Mediterranean spotted fever (MSF) is a disease caused by Rickettsia conorii and transmitted by the brown dog tick Rhipicephalus sanguineus. It is widely distributed through southern Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. It is an emerging or a reemerging disease in some regions. Countries of the Mediterranean basin, such as Portugal, have noticed an increased incidence of MSF over the past 10 years. It was believed that MSF was a benign disease associated with a mortality rate of 1-3% before the antimicrobial drug era. It was called benign summer typhus. Severe forms were described in 1981, and the mortality rate reached 32% in Portugal in 1997. However, neurological manifestations associated with brain lesions are a rare event. We describe the case of a man with fever, maculopapular rash, a black spot, and hemisensory loss including the face on the left side of the body with brain lesions in the imaging studies.

Experimental Hyperprolinemia Induces Mild Oxidative Stress, Metabolic Changes, and Tissue Adaptation in Rat Liver

Journal of Cellular Biochemistry. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21882227

The present study investigated the effects of chronic hyperprolinemia on oxidative and metabolic status in liver and serum of rats. Wistar rats received daily subcutaneous injections of proline from their 6th to 28th day of life. Twelve hours after the last injection the rats were sacrificed and liver and serum were collected. Results showed that hyperprolinemia induced a significant reduction in total antioxidant potential and thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances. The activities of the antioxidant enzymes catalase and superoxide dismutase were significantly increased after chronic proline administration, while glutathione (GSH) peroxidase activity, dichlorofluorescin oxidation, GSH, sulfhydryl, and carbonyl content remained unaltered. Histological analyses of the liver revealed that proline treatment induced changes of the hepatic microarchitecture and increased the number of inflammatory cells and the glycogen content. Biochemical determination also demonstrated an increase in glycogen concentration, as well as a higher synthesis of glycogen in liver of hyperprolinemic rats. Regarding to hepatic metabolism, it was observed an increase on glucose oxidation and a decrease on lipid synthesis from glucose. However, hepatic lipid content and serum glucose levels were not changed. Proline administration did not alter the aminotransferases activities and serum markers of hepatic injury. Our findings suggest that hyperprolinemia alters the liver homeostasis possibly by induction of a mild degree of oxidative stress and metabolic changes. The hepatic alterations caused by proline probably do not implicate in substantial hepatic tissue damage, but rather demonstrate a process of adaptation of this tissue to oxidative stress. However, the biological significance of these findings requires additional investigation.

Ultra-structure and Histochemistry of Digestive Cells of Podisus Nigrispinus (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) Fed with Prey Reared on Bt-cotton

Micron (Oxford, England : 1993). Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21900014

The toxic effects of Bt proteins from the body of the prey/host to predators and parasitoids have been investigated as a route of impact on non-target insects of Bt crops. This research aimed to analyze ultrastructural changes and histochemistry in digestive cells of the middle region of the midgut of Podisus nigrispinus fed, since its second instar, with Spodoptera frugiperda reared on Bt cotton variety Acala90 B, which expresses the toxin Cry 1Ac, and its non-Bt isoline Acala 90. Fragments of the midgut of P. nigrispinus were analyzed by electron microscopy. For the histochemical analysis, Bromophenol Blue, Periodic Acid Schiff von Kossa, Alcian Blue pH 2.5 and Sudan Black were used. The Cry1Ac toxin of Bt cotton ingested by S. frugiperda promotes a disorganization in the perimicrovillar matrix of P. nigrispinus (third trophic level), thus generating ultrastructural changes in the digestive cells, as elongation of microvilli, presence of spherocrystals and granules of different electron densities, in addition to altering the distribution pattern of glycogen, lipids and calcium of these cells in the median region of the midgut. Thus, we conclude that species moderately susceptible to Cry1Ac toxin, such as S. frugiperda, can acquire this toxin and expose it to P. nigrispinus, which can interfere with your ability to predation.

Both the Dorsal Hippocampus and the Dorsolateral Striatum Are Needed for Rat Navigation in the Morris Water Maze

Behavioural Brain Research. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21925543

The multiple memory systems theory proposes that the hippocampus and the dorsolateral striatum are the core structures of the spatial/relational and stimulus-response (S-R) memory systems, respectively. This theory is supported by double dissociation studies showing that the spatial and cue (S-R) versions of the Morris water maze are impaired by lesions in the dorsal hippocampus and dorsal striatum, respectively. In the present study we further investigated whether adult male Wistar rats bearing double and bilateral electrolytic lesions in the dorsal hippocampus and dorsolateral striatum were as impaired as rats bearing single lesions in just one of these structures in learning both versions of the water maze. Such a prediction, based on the multiple memory systems theory, was not confirmed. Compared to the controls, the animals with double lesions exhibited no improvement at all in the spatial version and learned the cued version very slowly. These results suggest that, instead of independent systems competing for holding control over navigational behaviour, the hippocampus and dorsal striatum both play critical roles in navigation based on spatial or cue-based strategies.

A Clinical, Pathologic, and Molecular Study of P53 and Murine Double Minute 2 in Penile Carcinogenesis and Its Relation to Prognosis

Human Pathology. Apr, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21925707

Penile carcinoma constitutes up to 16% of male malignancies in developing countries. Changes in the p53 and murine double minute 2 pathway are important events in various cancers. Associate alterations in murine double minute 2 and p53 expression were evaluated by molecular techniques, with the clinical data of 297 cases of penile carcinoma. Automated immunohistochemistry was performed for murine double minute 2 and p53 using the primary antibodies SPM14 and DO7, respectively. Fluorescent in situ hybridization was performed using the probes murine double minute 2 at 12q15 and TP53 at 17p13.1. Slides were digitalized, and bright-field and fluorescent images were analyzed. TP53 was sequenced in 16 cases. The expression of p53 was higher in poorly differentiated, infiltrative border, corpus spongiosum, corpora cavernosa, and invasive urethral carcinomas. Patients who died of disease also expressed higher levels of p53. p53-negative tumors were associated with higher overall survival. Murine double minute 2 showed no difference of expression in any group of tumors, no correlation with p53 expression. No alterations in genes or chromosomes were observed. Mutations in TP53 were observed in 4 of 16 cases: p.T170M, p.L252P, p.C176Y, and the novel c.803_810del8; these changes correlated with p53 expression by immunohistochemistry. Murine double minute 2 is not useful in the prognosis of penile carcinoma by immunohistochemistry. Additional studies on the transcriptional, posttranscriptional, and epigenetic aspects are necessary to understand the interactions between p53 and murine double minute 2 because we did not observe any numeric alterations by fluorescent in situ hybridization. Examining p53 is helpful in identifying patients with more aggressive tumors and may be crucial in selecting the most suitable surgical procedure.

Evidence That Hyperprolinemia Alters Glutamatergic Homeostasis in Rat Brain: Neuroprotector Effect of Guanosine

Neurochemical Research. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21935728

This study investigated the effects of acute and chronic hyperprolinemia on glutamate uptake, as well as some mechanisms underlying the proline effects on glutamatergic system in rat cerebral cortex. The protective role of guanosine on effects mediated by proline was also evaluated. Results showed that acute and chronic hyperprolinemia reduced glutamate uptake, Na(+), K(+)-ATPase activity, ATP levels and increased lipoperoxidation. GLAST and GLT-1 immunocontent were increased in acute, but not in chronic hyperprolinemic rats. Our data suggest that the effects of proline on glutamate uptake may be mediated by lipid peroxidation and disruption of Na(+), K(+)-ATPase activity, but not by decreasing in glutamate transporters. This probably induces excitotoxicity and subsequent energy deficit. Guanosine was effective to prevent most of the effects promoted by proline, reinforcing its modulator role in counteracting the glutamate toxicity. However, further studies are needed to assess the modulatory effects of guanosine on experimental hyperprolinemia.

Acute Hyperhomocysteinemia Alters the Coagulation System and Oxidative Status in the Blood of Rats

Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21948259

In the present study, we investigated the effect of the acute administration of homocysteine (Hcy) on parameters of the coagulation system, as well as fibrinogen and nitrite levels in the blood of rats. In addition, we evaluated the effect of acute hyperhomocysteinemia on thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances in plasma and on antioxidant enzymes activities (superoxide dismutase, catalase, and gluthatione peroxidase) in the erythrocytes of rats. Wistar rats, aged 29 days, received a single subcutaneous dorsal injection of saline (control) or Hcy (0.6 μmol/g body weight). Fifteen minutes, 1 h, 6 h or 12 h after the injection, the rats were euthanized and the blood, plasma, and erythrocytes were collected. Results showed that Hcy significantly increased platelet count in the blood and plasma fibrinogen levels of rats at 15 min and 1 h, but not at 6 h and 12 h, when compared with the control group. Prothrombin time, activated partial thromboplastin time, and nitrite levels significantly decreased in plasma at 15 min and 1 h, but not at 6 h and 12 h after Hcy administration. In addition, hyperhomocysteinemia increased thiobarbituric acid-reactive, an index of lipid peroxidation, in plasma at 15 min and 1 h; decreased the superoxide dismutase and gluthatione peroxidase activity, and increased the catalase activity at 15 min in erythrocytes of rats, suggesting that acute Hcy administration may alter the oxidative status in the blood of rats. Our findings suggest that hypercoagulability and oxidative stress can occur after acute hyperhomocysteinemia, possibly in association, at least in part, with the vascular dysfunction and thromboembolic complications observed in homocystinuric patients.

Behavioral, Neurochemical and Histological Alterations Promoted by Bilateral Intranigral Rotenone Administration: a New Approach for an Old Neurotoxin

Neurotoxicity Research. Apr, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 21953489

Rotenone exposure in rodents provides an interesting model for studying mechanisms of toxin-induced dopaminergic neuronal injury. However, several aspects remain unclear regarding the effects and the accuracy of rotenone as an animal model of Parkinson's disease (PD). In order to counteract these limitations, this study characterized a precise neurotoxin-delivery strategy employing the bilateral intranigral administration protocol of rotenone as a reliable model of PD. We performed bilateral intranigral injections of rotenone (12 μg) and subsequent general activity (1, 10, 20, and 30 days after rotenone) and cognitive (7, 8, 15, and 30 days after rotenone) evaluations followed by neurochemical and immunohistochemical tests. We have observed that rotenone was able to produce a remarkable reduction on the percentage of tyrosine hydroxylase immunoreactive neurons (about 60%) within the substantia nigra pars compacta. Dopamine (DA) was severely depleted at 30 days after rotenone administration, similarly to its metabolites. In addition, an increase in DA turnover was detected at the same time-point. In parallel, striatal serotonin and its metabolite were found to be increased 30 days after the neurotoxic insult, without apparent modification in the serotonin turnover. Besides, motor behavior was impaired, mainly 1 day after rotenone. Furthermore, learning and memory processes were severely disrupted in different time-points, particularly at the training and test session (30 days). We now provide further evidence of a time-dependent neurodegeneration associated to cognitive impairment after the single bilateral intranigral administration of rotenone. Thus, it is proposed that the current rotenone protocol provides an improvement regarding the existing rotenone models of PD.

Chronic Methylphenidate Administration Alters Antioxidant Defenses and Butyrylcholinesterase Activity in Blood of Juvenile Rats

Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22012612

Methylphenidate (MPH), a psychostimulant that affects both dopaminergic and noradrenergic systems, is one of the most frequently prescribed treatments for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. The present study investigated the effects of chronic administration of MPH on some parameters of oxidative stress, as well as on butyrylcholinesterase (BuChE) activity in blood of young rats. Rats received intraperitoneal injections of MPH (2.0 mg/kg) once a day, from the 15th to the 45th day of age or an equivalent volume of 0.9% saline solution (controls). Two hours after the last injection, animals were euthanized, and blood was collected. Results demonstrated that MPH did not alter the dichlorofluorescein formed, decreased both thiobarbituric acid reactive substances and total non-enzymatic radical-trapping antioxidant, and increased superoxide dismutase and catalase activities, suggesting that this psychostimulant may alter antioxidant defenses. BuChE activity was increased in blood of juvenile rats subjected to chronic MPH administration. These findings suggest that MPH may promote peripheral oxidative adaptations and cholinergic changes.

Loss of RKIP Expression During the Carcinogenic Evolution of Endometrial Cancer

Journal of Clinical Pathology. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22031589

Endometrial cancer is one of the most common cancers in women worldwide, but there is a lack of diagnostic markers for early detection of these tumours. The raf kinase inhibitory protein (RKIP) negatively regulates the Raf/MEK/ERK pathway, and the downregulation of RKIP is associated with tumour progression and metastasis in several human neoplasms. The aim of this study was to assess the expression levels of RKIP in endometrial cancer and determine whether this expression correlates with clinical outcome in these patients.

Cervical Abscess in an Immunocompetent Patient with Mycobacterium Malmoense Pulmonary Disease

Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. Sep, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22057954

Mycobacterium malmoense is a nontuberculous mycobacteria seen mainly in two age groups and with different clinical presentations. Most patients are male adults presenting clinical symptoms and signs similar to those of pulmonary tuberculosis. The second group is formed by immunocompetent children with localized cervical lymphadenitis. Although cervical adenitis is the main extrapulmonary manifestation of M. malmoense, virtually all cases of cervical disease were documented in children. Disseminated disease is rare and has been reported in patients with severely impaired immunity.

The Role of the Ventrolateral Caudoputamen in Predatory Hunting

Physiology & Behavior. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22061428

The ventrolateral caudoputamen (VLCP) is well known to participate in the control of orofacial movements and forepaw usage accompanying feeding behavior. Previous studies from our laboratory have shown that insect hunting is associated with a distinct Fos up-regulation in the VLCP at intermediate rostro-caudal levels. Moreover, using the reversible blockade with lidocaine, we have previously suggested that the VLCP implements the stereotyped actions seen during prey capture and handling, and may influence the motivational drive to start attacking the roaches, as well. However, considering that (1) lidocaine suppresses action potentials not only in neurons, but also in fibers-of-passage, rendering the observed behavioral effect not specific to the ventrolateral caudoputamen; (2) the short lidocaine-induced inactivation period had left a relatively narrow window to observe the behavioral changes; and (3) that the restriction stress to inject the drug could have also disturbed hunting behavior, in the present study, we have examined the role of the VLCP in predatory hunting by placing bilateral NMDA lesions three weeks previous to the behavior testing. We were able to confirm that the VLCP serves to implement the stereotyped sequence of actions seen during prey capture and handling, but the study did not confirm its role in influencing the motivational drive to hunt. Together with other studies from our group, the present work serves as an important piece of information that helps to reveal the neural systems underlying predatory hunting.

Digital Subtraction Radiography Evaluation of Longitudinal Bone Density Changes Around Immediate Loading Implants: a Pilot Study

Dento Maxillo Facial Radiology. Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22074866

The aim of this study was to assess longitudinal quantitative changes in bone density around different implant loading protocols and implant surfaces measured by digital subtraction radiography (DSR).

Involvement of Methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus Aureus Related to Sequence Type 25 and Harboring Pvl Genes in a Case of Carotid Cavernous Fistula After Community-associated Sepsis

Journal of Clinical Microbiology. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22090398

Staphylococcus aureus encoding Panton-Valentine leukocidin (PVL) genes has become the cause of life-threatening infections. We describe a case of carotid cavernous fistula after bacteremia in a 12-year-old male, caused by a methicillin-susceptible S. aureus isolate carrying the pvl, fnbA, and ebpS genes and related to sequence type 25 (ST25). The patient's condition was complicated by pleural empyema and osteomyelitis in the right femur. The patient was discharged in good clinical condition after 160 days of hospitalization.

Antimicrobial and Antibiofilm Action of Casbane Diterpene from Croton Nepetaefolius Against Oral Bacteria

Archives of Oral Biology. May, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22119044

The antibacterial activity of Casbane Diterpene (CD) was evaluated in vitro against Streptococcus oralis, S. mutans, S. salivarius, S. sobrinus, S. mitis and S. sanguinis. The viability of planktonic cells was analysed by susceptibility tests (MIC and MBC) and antibiofilm action was assayed.

Antifungal and Other Biological Activities of Two 2S Albumin-homologous Proteins Against Pathogenic Fungi

The Protein Journal. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22120089

The aim of this study was to determine whether 2S albumins from Passiflora edulis f. flavicarpa and Capsicum annuum seeds inhibit growth, induce plasma membrane permeabilization and induce endogenous production of nitric oxide in different pathogenic and non-pathogenic yeasts. The 2S albumin from P. flavicarpa (Pf-Alb) inhibited the growth of Kluyveromyces marxiannus, Candida albicans and Candida parapsilosis. The membranes of these yeast strains were permeabilized in the presence of Pf-Alb. The Pf-Alb also inhibited the glucose-stimulated acidification of the medium by Saccharomyces cerevisiae and C. albicans cells, which indicates a probable impairment of fungal metabolism because the inhibition of acidification occurred at various Pf-Alb concentrations and pre-incubation times. The 2S albumin from C. annuum (Ca-Alb) inhibited the growth of the yeasts K. marxiannus, C. tropicalis, C. albicans and S. cerevisiae. These yeast strains exhibited NO induction in the presence of Ca-Alb and displayed cellular agglomeration, elongated cells and the induction of pseudohyphae. Pf-Alb and Ca-Alb at various concentrations also inhibited the glucose-stimulated acidification of the medium by S. cerevisiae cells. Our results indicate that the ability of antimicrobial plant proteins such as 2S albumins to induce microbial inhibition could be an important factor in determining pathogen virulence. Therefore, 2S albumins might be targets for the design of new antifungal drugs.

Humoral and Cellular Immune Responses in Pigs Immunized Intranasally with Crude Rhoptry Proteins of Toxoplasma Gondii Plus Quil-A

Veterinary Parasitology. May, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22137347

We evaluated the humoral and cellular immune responses in pigs immunized intranasally with crude rhoptry proteins of Toxoplasma gondii plus Quil-A. The experiment used 13 mixed-breed pigs divided into the following three groups: G1 (vaccinated-challenged, n=6), which received the rhoptry vaccine (200(g/dose); G2 (adjuvant-challenged, n=4), which received PBS plus Quil-A; and G3 (unvaccinated-challenged, n=3), which was the control group. The treatments were performed intranasally at days 0, 21, and 42. Three pigs from G1 produced IgG and IgM antibody levels above the cut-off in the ELISA on the challenge day. Partial protection was observed in G1 at the chronic phase of infection when compared with G3. The preventable fractions were 41.6% and 6.5%, in G1 and G2, respectively. The results of this study suggest that rhoptry proteins plus Quil-A stimulated humoral, local, and systemic immune responses, which were able to partially protect the brain from cyst formation.

Capsicum Annuum L. Trypsin Inhibitor As a Template Scaffold for New Drug Development Against Pathogenic Yeast

Antonie Van Leeuwenhoek. Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22160750

A 6,000 Da peptide, named CaTI, was isolated from Capsicum annuum L. seeds and showed potent inhibitory activity against trypsin and chymotrypsin. The aim of this study was to determine the effect of CaTI on Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Candida albicans, Candida tropicalis and Kluyveromyces marxiannus cells. We observed that CaTI inhibited the growth of S. cerevisiae, K. marxiannus as well as C. albicans and induced cellular agglomeration and the release of cytoplasmic content. No effect on growth was observed in C. tropicalis but morphological changes were noted. In the spot assay, different degrees of sensitivity were shown among the strains and concentrations tested. Scanning electron microscopy showed that S. cerevisiae, K. marxiannus and C. albicans, in the presence of CaTI, exhibited morphological alterations, such as the formation of pseudohyphae, cellular aggregates and elongated forms. We also show that CaTI induces the generation of nitric oxide and interferes in a dose-dependent manner with glucose-stimulated acidification of the medium mediated by H(+)-ATPase of S. cerevisiae cells.

Induction of Immunological Tolerance by Oral Anti-CD3

Clinical & Developmental Immunology. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22162715

In recent years, our knowledge about immunoregulation and autoimmunity has significantly advanced, but nontoxic and more effective treatments for different inflammatory and autoimmune diseases are still lacking. Oral tolerance is of unique immunologic importance because it is a continuous natural immunologic event driven by exogenous antigen and is an attractive approach for treatment of these conditions. Parenteral administration of anti-CD3 monoclonal antibody is an approved therapy for transplantation in humans and is effective in autoimmune diabetes. Orally administered anti-CD3 monoclonal antibody is biologically active in the gut and suppresses experimental models of autoimmune diseases. Orally delivered antibody does not have side effects including cytokine release syndromes, thus oral anti-CD3 antibody is clinically applicable for chronic therapy. Here we review findings that identify a novel and powerful immunologic approach that is widely applicable for the treatment of human autoimmune conditions.

Involvement of the Paraventricular Nucleus (PVN) of Hypothalamus in the Cardiovascular Alterations to Head Up Tilt in Conscious Rats

Neuroscience Research. Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22182743

We evaluated the involvement of paraventricular nucleus (PVN) in the changes in mean arterial pressure (MAP) and heart rate (HR) during an orthostatic challenge (head up tilt, HUT). Adult male Wistar rats, instrumented with guide cannulas to PVN and artery and vein catheters were submitted to MAP and HR recording in conscious state and induction of HUT. The HUT induced an increase in MAP and HR and the pretreatment with prazosin and atenolol blocked these effects. After inhibition of neurotransmission with cobalt chloride (1 mM/100 nl) into the PVN the HR parameters did not change, however we observed a decrease in MAP during HUT. Our data suggest the involvement of PVN in the brain circuitry involved in cardiovascular adjustment during orthostatic challenges.

Prognostication of Soft Tissue Sarcomas Based on Chromosome 17q Gene and Protein Status: Evaluation of TOP2A, HER-2/neu, and Survivin

Annals of Surgical Oncology. Jun, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22203181

Topoisomerase 2 alpha (TOP2A), HER-2/neu, and survivin are genes that lie on chromosome 17 and correlate with the prognosis and prediction of target-driven therapy against tumors. In a previous study, we showed that TOP2A transcripts levels were significantly higher in soft tissue sarcomas (STS) than in benign tumors and desmoid-type fibromatoses (FM). Because these genes have been insufficiently examined in STS, we aimed to identify alterations in TOP2A and HER-2 expression by fluorescent in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry, as well as that of survivin, and correlate them with clinicopathologic findings to assess their prognostic value.

Ewing's Sarcoma Presenting As an Isolated Intra-cardiac Mass

European Journal of Cardio-thoracic Surgery : Official Journal of the European Association for Cardio-thoracic Surgery. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22219489

Physical Exercise Reverses Glutamate Uptake and Oxidative Stress Effects of Chronic Homocysteine Administration in the Rat

International Journal of Developmental Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the International Society for Developmental Neuroscience. Apr, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22244886

The influence of physical exercise on the effects elicited by homocysteine on glutamate uptake and some parameters of oxidative stress, namely thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances, 2',7'-dichlorofluorescein (H(2)DCF) oxidation, as well as enzymatic antioxidant activities, superoxide dismutase, catalase and glutathione peroxidase in rat cerebral cortex were investigated. Wistar rats received subcutaneous administration of homocysteine or saline (control) from the 6th to 29th day of life. The physical exercise was performed from the 30th to 60th day of life; 12 h after the last exercise session animals were sacrificed and the cerebral cortex was dissected out. It is shown that homocysteine reduces glutamate uptake increases thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances and disrupts enzymatic antioxidant defenses in cerebral cortex. Physical activity reversed the homocysteine effects on glutamate uptake and on antioxidant enzymes activities; although the increase in thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances was only partially reversed by exercise. These findings allow us to suggest that physical exercise may have a protective role against homocysteine-induced oxidative imbalance and brain damage to the glutamatergic system.

Diagnostic Accuracy of Brush Cytology in Canine Chronic Intranasal Disease

Veterinary Clinical Pathology / American Society for Veterinary Clinical Pathology. Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22250805

Most cases of canine chronic intranasal disease cannot be differentiated based on clinical examination alone, and biopsy is often required for a definitive diagnosis. Nonsurgical cytologic and histologic biopsy techniques represent desirable diagnostic approaches.

Ezrin Regulates Microvillus Morphogenesis by Promoting Distinct Activities of Eps8 Proteins

Molecular Biology of the Cell. Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22262457

The mechanisms that regulate actin filament polymerization resulting in the morphogenesis of the brush border microvilli in epithelial cells remain unknown. Eps8, the prototype of a family of proteins capable of capping and bundling actin filaments, has been shown to bundle the microvillar actin filaments. We report that Eps8L1a, a member of the Eps8 family and a novel ezrin-interacting partner, controls microvillus length through its capping activity. Depletion of Eps8L1a leads to the formation of long microvilli, whereas its overexpression has the opposite effect. We demonstrate that ezrin differentially modulates the actin-capping and -bundling activities of Eps8 and Eps8L1a during microvillus assembly. Coexpression of ezrin with Eps8 promotes the formation of membrane ruffles and tufts of microvilli, whereas expression of ezrin and Eps8L1a induces the clustering of actin-containing structures at the cell surface. These distinct morphological changes are neither observed when a mutant of ezrin defective in its binding to Eps8/Eps8L1a is coexpressed with Eps8 or Eps8L1a nor observed when ezrin is expressed with mutants of Eps8 or Eps8L1a defective in the actin-bundling or -capping activities, respectively. Our data show a synergistic effect of ezrin and Eps8 proteins in the assembly and organization of actin microvillar filaments.

[Sodium and Glucose Concentration in Therapeutical Solution for Oral Rehydration Prepared by Community Health Agents]

Ciência & Saúde Coletiva. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22267038

Infant Diarrhea is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in children and oral rehydration therapy (ORT) is required. This study evaluates the composition of ORT prepared by Community Health Agents (CHAs) working in Basic Health Units, assessing their profile and knowledge about ORT. After the CHAs answer specific questions, they are invited to prepare ORT using three methods. Glucose and sodium levels were then quantified and compared with WHO recommendations. ANOVA, Tukey and odds ratio were used for statistical analysis. 52 CHAs participated, mainly females, and 90.4% with full high school education. The adequacy of the ORT was 3.9; 9.8 and 28.9% for table spoon, measuring spoon and pinch and scoop, respectively. The ORT preparation by table spoon resulted in 88% of samples with dangerous levels of sodium (≥101 mmol/L). 38.5% of the CHAs had less than 2 years experience, leading to a 4.8 times greater risk of preparing ORT with high sodium. The CHAs indicated ORT as a treatment for diarrhea, though they were unaware of the side effects of inadequate preparation. The composition of the ORT produced by the CHAs was inadequate in all methods tested. The CHAs revealed a lack of knowledge of the side effects iof ORT with inadequate salt levels. The recommendation is to train the CHAs in ORT preparation.

The Anabolic Androgenic Steroid Fluoxymesterone Inhibits 11β-hydroxysteroid Dehydrogenase 2-dependent Glucocorticoid Inactivation

Toxicological Sciences : an Official Journal of the Society of Toxicology. Apr, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22273746

Anabolic androgenic steroids (AAS) are testosterone derivatives used either clinically, in elite sports, or for body shaping with the goal to increase muscle size and strength. Clinically developed compounds and nonclinically tested designer steroids often marketed as food supplements are widely used. Despite the considerable evidence for various adverse effects of AAS use, the underlying molecular mechanisms are insufficiently understood. Here, we investigated whether some AAS, as a result of a lack of target selectivity, might inhibit 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 2 (11β-HSD2)-dependent inactivation of glucocorticoids. Using recombinant human 11β-HSD2, we observed inhibitory effects for several AAS. Whereas oxymetholone, oxymesterone, danazol, and testosterone showed medium inhibitory potential, fluoxymesterone was a potent inhibitor of human 11β-HSD2 (half-maximal inhibitory concentration [IC(50)] of 60-100nM in cell lysates; IC(50) of 160nM in intact SW-620, and 530nM in MCF-7 cells). Measurements with rat kidney microsomes and lysates of cells expressing recombinant mouse 11β-HSD2 revealed much weaker inhibition by the AAS tested, indicating that the adverse effects of AAS-dependent 11β-HSD2 inhibition cannot be investigated in rats and mice. Furthermore, we provide evidence that fluoxymesterone is metabolized to 11-oxofluoxymesterone by human 11β-HSD2. Structural modeling revealed similar binding modes for fluoxymesterone and cortisol, supporting a competitive mode of inhibition of 11β-HSD2-dependent cortisol oxidation by this AAS. No direct modulation of mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) function was observed. Thus, 11β-HSD2 inhibition by fluoxymesterone may cause cortisol-induced MR activation, thereby leading to electrolyte disturbances and contributing to the development of hypertension and cardiovascular disease.

Wood Typification by Venturi Easy Ambient Sonic Spray Ionization Mass Spectrometry: the Case of the Endangered Mahogany Tree

Journal of Mass Spectrometry : JMS. Jan, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22282083

Venturi easy ambient sonic spray ionization mass spectrometry in both its liquid (V(L) -EASI-MS) and solid sample modes (V(S) -EASI-MS) is shown to provide nearly immediate and secure typification of woods, as demonstrated for Mahogany, an endangered and most valuable type of tropical wood. This reddish wood displays unique phytochemical markers (phragmalin-type limonoids) which are rapidly detected from the wood surface by V(S) -EASI-MS or from a simple methanol extract of a tiny wood chip by V(L) -EASI-MS. Unique profiles were obtained for Mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla) whereas genuine samples of six other similar types of woods, which are commonly falsified by artificial coloring and commercialized as Mahogany, display also typical but dissimilar pythochemical profiles as compared to that of the authentic wood. Variable and atypical chemical profiles were observed for artificially colored woods. Secure chemical characterization via V(S) -EASI-MS or V(s) -EASI-MS fingerprints of Mahogany and other types of woods with similar appearance should help to control the illegal logging and trade of this and other endangered woods and their falsification, and to create certified standards. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Week 96 Efficacy, Virology and Safety of Darunavir/r Versus Lopinavir/r in Treatment-Experienced Patients in TITAN

Current HIV Research. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22329524

Long-term potent activity of antiretrovirals is essential for HIV-1-infected, treatment-experienced patients. TITAN (TMC114/r In Treatment-experienced pAtients Naive to lopinavir) compared Week-96 efficacy and safety of darunavir/ritonavir (DRV/r) versus lopinavir/ritonavir (LPV/r). Treatment-experienced, LPV-naïve, HIV-1-infected patients were randomised to DRV/r 600/100 mg bid or LPV/r 400/100 mg bid plus optimised background regimen (ə2 NRTIs/NNRTIs). 595 patients were enrolled (mean baseline HIV-1 RNA: 4.30 log10 copies/mL; median CD4 count: 232 cells/mm3). At Week 96, more DRV/r than LPV/r patients achieved HIV-1 RNA &400 copies/mL (66.8% versus 58.9% [intent-to-treat (ITT)/time-to-loss of virological response (TLOVR)], estimated difference 8.7%, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.7-16.7), demonstrating the primary endpoint of non-inferiority of DRV/r (p<0.001); the difference in response was statistically significant (p=0.034). For the secondary efficacy parameter (HIV-1 RNA <50 copies/mL) at Week 96, response to DRV/r was 60.4% versus 55.2% for LPV/r (ITT-TLOVR), estimated difference 5.8%, 95% CI: -2.3-13.9. Virological failure (VF; HIV-1 RNA >400 copies/mL) with DRV/r (13.8%) was nearly half that with LPV/r (25.6%). Discontinuations due to adverse events were 8.1% for both DRV/r and LPV/r. Treatment-related grade 2-4 diarrhoea was 8.1% (DRV/r) versus 15.2% (LPV/r). Increases in triglycerides and total cholesterol were less pronounced with DRV/r. At 96 weeks, non-inferiority (HIV-1 RNA <400 copies/mL) of DRV/r over LPV/r was maintained; the difference in response was statistically significant. VF rate and treatment-related grade 2-4 diarrhoea were lower with DRV/r versus LPV/r.

First Report of Acute Autochthonous Hepatitis E in Portugal

Journal of Infection in Developing Countries. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22337852

Hepatitis E infection is usually a self-limiting disease. In industrialized countries, sporadic cases of acute hepatitis E virus (HEV) infections have been described; their number seems to be increasing in European countries. We report the first human case of autochthonous acute hepatitis E confirmed in Portugal. Patients with acute non-A-C hepatitis should be tested for HEV in Portugal and hepatitis E infection should be considered in the differential diagnosis of unexplained hepatitis cases.

Week 96 Efficacy, Virology and Safety of Darunavir/r Versus Lopinavir/r in Treatment-experienced Patients in TITAN

Current HIV Research. Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22339125

Long-term potent activity of antiretrovirals is essential for HIV-1-infected, treatment-experienced patients. TITAN (TMC114/r In Treatment-experienced pAtients Naive to lopinavir) compared Week-96 efficacy and safety of darunavir/ritonavir (DRV/r) versus lopinavir/ritonavir (LPV/r). Treatment-experienced, LPV-naive, HIV-1-infected patients were randomised to DRV/r 600/100 mg bid or LPV/r 400/100 mg bid plus optimised background regimen (≥ 2 NRTIs/NNRTIs). 595 patients were enrolled (mean baseline HIV-1 RNA: 4.30 log10 copies/mL; median CD4 count: 232 cells/mm3). At Week 96, more DRV/r than LPV/r patients achieved HIV-1 RNA < 400 copies/mL (66.8% versus 58.9% [intent-to-treat (ITT)/time-to-loss of virological response (TLOVR)], estimated difference 8.7%, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.7-16.7), demonstrating the primary endpoint of non-inferiority of DRV/r (p < 0.001); the difference in response was statistically significant (p = 0.034). For the secondary efficacy parameter (HIV-1 RNA < 50 copies/mL) at Week 96, response to DRV/r was 60.4% versus 55.2% for LPV/r (ITT-TLOVR), estimated difference 5.8%, 95% CI: -2.3-13.9. Virological failure (VF; HIV-1 RNA > 400 copies/mL) with DRV/r (13.8%) was nearly half that with LPV/r (25.6%). Discontinuations due to adverse events were 8.1% for both DRV/r and LPV/r. Treatment-related grade 2-4 diarrhoea was 8.1% (DRV/r) versus 15.2% (LPV/r). Increases in triglycerides and total cholesterol were less pronounced with DRV/r. At 96 weeks, noninferiority (HIV-1 RNA < 400 copies/mL) of DRV/r over LPV/r was maintained; the difference in response was statistically significant. VF rate and treatment-related grade 2-4 diarrhoea were lower with DRV/r versus LPV/r.

Adipofascial Turnover Flap for the Coverage of the Dorsum of the Thumb: an Anatomic Study and Clinical Application

The Journal of Hand Surgery, European Volume. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22357329

The purpose of this report is to show how our anatomical findings have influenced the design of the dorsal homodigital adipofascial turnover arterial flap to the thumb. Thirty-six thumbs from 18 fresh cadavers were dissected at the Fèr à Moulin Laboratoire (Paris, France) between January 1998 and March 1999. All branches of the proper digital artery (PDA) were identified. During the clinical study, from 2002 to 2008, 12 patients with dorsal thumb skin defects were treated with adipofascial turnover flaps. The dorsal branches of the PDA typically emerge at the level of the metacarpophalangeal and interphalangeal joints, 10 mm apart from the joint line. Based on the anatomical study, the flap could be designed predictably and reliably. The main advantages of dorsal adipofascial turnover flaps include their simplicity; the possibility of a one stage procedure; avoiding the use of tissue from elsewhere on the limb/body; minimal donor-site deformity; and avoidance of damage to the volar digital arteries.

Exaggerated Blood Pressure Response During Exercise Treadmill Testing: Functional and Hemodynamic Features, and Risk Factors

Hypertension Research : Official Journal of the Japanese Society of Hypertension. Jul, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22357524

The factors which contribute to an exaggerated blood pressure response (EBPR) during the exercise treadmill test (ETT) are not wholly understood. The association between the insertion/deletion polymorphisms of the angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) and M235T of the angiotensinogen with EBPR during ETT still remains unstudied. To identify and compare the risk factors for hypertension between normotensive subjects with EBPR and those who exhibit a normal curve of blood pressure (BP) during ETT. In a series of EBPR cases from a historical cohort of normotensive individuals, a univariate analysis was performed to estimate the association of the studied factors with BP behavior during ETT. Additionally, logistic multivariate regression was conducted to analyze the joint effects of the variables. P-values above 0.05 were considered statistically significant. From a total of 10,027 analyzed examinations, only 219 met the criteria employed to define EBPR, which resulted in a prevalence of 12.6%. For the systolic component of the BP, hyperreactive subjects displayed a mean age and body mass index (BMI) significantly higher than the others (P=0.002 and <0.001, respectively). No association was observed between the polymorphisms cited above and EBPR. An analysis of the joint effect of variables has indicated that only age (P< 0.001) and BMI (P=0.001) were specifically associated with systolic BP during exercise. Age and BMI were the only factors that independently influenced EBPR during ETT.

Determination of Enrofloxacin by Room-temperature Phosphorimetry After Solid Phase Extraction on an Acrylic Polymer Sorbent

Spectrochimica Acta. Part A, Molecular and Biomolecular Spectroscopy. Feb, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22386147

A phosphorimetric method was developed to enable the determination of enrofloxacin using photochemical derivatization which was used to both improve detection limits and to minimize the uncertainty of measurements. Phosphorescence was induced on cellulose containing TlNO(3). Absolute limit of detection at the ng range and linear analytical response over three orders of magnitude were achieved. A metrological study was made to obtain the combined uncertainty value and to identify that the precision was mainly affected by the changing of substrates when measuring the signal from each replicate. Pharmaceutical formulations containing enrofloxacin were successfully analyzed by the method and the results were similar to the ones achieved using a HPLC method. A solid phase extraction on an acrylic polymer was optimized to separate enrofloxacin from interferents such as diclofenac and other components from biological matrices, which allowed the successful use of the method in urine analysis.

Metabolic Syndrome Prevalence is Increased in Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients and is Associated with Disease Activity

Scandinavian Journal of Rheumatology. May, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22416768

To evaluate the prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MetS) in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) vs. controls, and to verify possible associations of MetS with specific disease-related factors.

Plasmodium Falciparum Malaria, Bilateral Sixth Cranial Nerve Palsy and Delayed Cerebellar Ataxia

Journal of Infection in Developing Countries. Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22421613

We describe the case of a 14-year-old Caucasian male, a resident in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, who was observed in Portugal with severe Plasmodium falciparum malaria with high-level parasitemia and severe thrombocytopenia. The course was complicated by bilateral sixth cranial nerve palsy during acute malaria, followed by the appearance of delayed cerebellar ataxia during the recovery phase. This occurred after successful treatment with quinine plus doxycycline over seven days. Different levels of thrombocytopenia and C-reactive protein were observed during both neurologic events in the presence of HRP-2 positive tests for Plasmodium falciparum antigen. The patient recovered completely after three months.

Rga, a RofA-like Regulator, is the Major Transcriptional Activator of the PI-2a Pilus in Streptococcus Agalactiae

Microbial Drug Resistance (Larchmont, N.Y.). Jun, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22432704

Rapid adaptation to changing environments is key in determining the outcome of infections caused by the opportunistic human pathogen Streptococcus agalactiae. We previously demonstrated that the RofA-like protein (RALP) regulators RogB and Rga activate their downstream divergently transcribed genes, that is, the pilus operon PI-2a and the serine-rich repeat encoding gene srr1, respectively. Characterization of the Rga regulon by microarray revealed that the PI-2a pilus was strongly controlled by Rga, a result confirmed at the protein level. Complementation experiments showed that the expression of Rga, but not RogB, in the double ΔrogB/Δrga mutant, or in the clinical strain 2603V/R displaying frameshift mutations in rogB and rga genes, is sufficient to restore wild-type expression levels of PI-2a pilus and Srr1. Biofilm formation was impaired in the Δrga and Δrga/rogB mutants and restored on complementation with rga. Paradoxically, adherence to intestinal epithelial cells was unchanged in the Δrga mutant. Finally, the existence of several clinical isolates mutated in rga highlights the concept of strain-specific regulatory networks.

Reversal of Profound Neuromuscular Blockade with Sugammadex After Failure of Rapid Sequence Endotracheal Intubation: a Case Report

Revista Brasileira De Anestesiologia. Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22440384

Sugammadex is a reversal agent that acts as a selective antagonist of neuromuscular blockade induced by rocuronium and vecuronium. This is a case report of an elderly female patient who had sugammadex just after rocuronium induction.

Analysis of Individual Versus Group Behavior of Zebrafish: a Model Using PH Sublethal Effects

Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology. Jun, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22467059

An image analysis biomonitoring system was used to evaluate sublethal effects of pH on the mean swimming velocity of zebrafish. Responses to stress were tested comparing individual and group responses. Group analysis indicated no effect for all acid pH and for pH 9.0-9.5. Individual analysis indicated behavioral differences for most acid pH and higher than 9.5. Sensitivity to sublethal pH was best assessed when using individual analysis. Zebrafish decreased hyperactivity and increased hypoactivity with more acid or alkaline pH. Individual approach allowed to determine hyperactivity or hypoactivity and the species' thresholds of exposure, which is critical for the management of impairments.

Validity and Reproducibility of the Asthma Core International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC) Written Questionnaire Obtained by Telephone Survey

The Journal of Asthma : Official Journal of the Association for the Care of Asthma. May, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22468697

To assess the reproducibility and validity of the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC) asthma written questionnaire (IAWQ) for 6- to 7-year-old children administered to their parents/caregivers through a telephone interview.

Regarding "Dengue--how Best to Classify It"

Clinical Infectious Diseases : an Official Publication of the Infectious Diseases Society of America. Jun, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22474173

Chronic Hyperhomocysteinemia Increases Inflammatory Markers in Hippocampus and Serum of Rats

Neurochemical Research. Aug, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22484967

This study investigated the effects of chronic homocysteine administration on some parameters of inflammation, such as cytokines (TNF-α, IL-1β and IL-6), chemokine CCL(2) (MCP-1), nitrite and prostaglandin E(2) levels, as well as on immunocontent of NF-κB/p65 subunit in hippocampus and/or serum of rats. Since acetylcholinesterase has been associated with inflammation, we also evaluated the effect of homocysteine on this enzyme activity in hippocampus of rats. Wistar rats received daily subcutaneous injections of homocysteine (0.3-0.6 μmol/g body weight) or saline (control) from the 6th to the 28th days-of-age. One or 12 h after the last injection, rats were euthanized and hippocampus and serum were used. Results showed that chronic hyperhomocysteinemia significantly increased pro-inflammatory cytokines (TNF-α, IL-1β and IL-6), chemokine CCL(2) (MCP-1) and prostaglandin E(2) in hippocampus and serum of rats at 1 and 12 h after the last injection of homocysteine. Nitrite levels increased in hippocampus, but decreased in serum at 1 h after chronic hyperhomocysteinemia. Acetylcholinesterase activity and immunocontent of citoplasmic and nuclear NF-κB/p65 subunit were increased in hippocampus of rats subjected to hyperhomocysteinemia at 1 h, but did not alter at 12 h after the last injection of homocysteine. According to our results, chronic hyperhomocysteinemia increases inflammatory parameters, suggesting that this process might be associated, at least in part, with the cerebrovascular and vascular dysfunctions characteristic of some homocystinuric patients.

Down-regulation of ANAPC13 and CLTCL1: Early Events in the Progression of Preinvasive Ductal Carcinoma of the Breast

Translational Oncology. Apr, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22496928

Alterations in the gene expression profile in epithelial cells during breast ductal carcinoma (DC) progression have been shown to occur mainly between pure ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) to the in situ component of a lesion with coexisting invasive ductal carcinoma (DCIS-IDC) implying that the molecular program for invasion is already established in the preinvasive lesion. For assessing early molecular alterations in epithelial cells that trigger tumorigenesis and testing them as prognostic markers for breast ductal carcinoma progression, we analyzed, by reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction, eight genes previously identified as differentially expressed between epithelial tumor cells populations captured from preinvasive lesions with distinct malignant potential, pure DCIS and the in situ component of DCIS-IDC. ANAPC13 and CLTCL1 down-regulation revealed to be early events of DC progression that anticipated the invasiveness manifestation. Further down-regulation of ANAPC13 also occurred after invasion appearance and the presence of the protein in invasive tumor samples was associated with higher rates of overall and disease-free survival in breast cancer patients. Furthermore, tumors with low levels of ANAPC13 displayed increased copy number alterations, with significant gains at 1q (1q23.1-1q32.1), 8q, and 17q (17q24.2), regions that display common imbalances in breast tumors, suggesting that down-regulation of ANAPC13 contributes to genomic instability in this disease.

Risk of Orthopedic Surgical Site Infections in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis Treated with Antitumor Necrosis Factor Alfa Therapy

International Journal of Rheumatology. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22500176

Introduction. International guidelines recommend interruption of anti-TNF medications in the perioperative period, but there are no randomized trials to support such recommendation. Objectives. To study literature evidence assessing the risk of surgical site infections in orthopedic surgery patients with RA using anti-TNF drugs, compared to untreated patients or those using conventional DMARD. Methods. Systematic review of cohort studies is concerning surgical site infections in orthopedic procedures in patients with RA. Results. Three studies were selected. Only one was considered of high-quality, albeit with low statistical power. The review resulted in inconclusive data, since the best quality study showed no significant differences between groups, while others showed increased risk of infections in patients using anti-TNF medications. Conclusion. It is unclear whether patients with RA using anti-TNF medications are at increased risk of surgical site infections. Randomized controlled trials or new high quality observational studies are needed to clarify the issue.

Scurvy in an Alcoholic Malnourished Cirrhotic Man with Spontaneous Bacterial Peritonitis

Clinics (São Paulo, Brazil). 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22522768

Cell Therapy in Chagas Cardiomyopathy (Chagas Arm of the Multicenter Randomized Trial of Cell Therapy in Cardiopathies Study): a Multicenter Randomized Trial

Circulation. May, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22523306

Previous studies suggested that transplantation of autologous bone marrow-derived mononuclear cells (BMNCs) improves heart function in chronic chagasic cardiomyopathy. We report the results of the first randomized trial of BMNC therapy in chronic chagasic cardiomyopathy.

Evidence That AKT and GSK-3β Pathway Are Involved in Acute Hyperhomocysteinemia

International Journal of Developmental Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the International Society for Developmental Neuroscience. Aug, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22525229

Homocysteine is a neurotoxic amino acid that accumulates in several disorders including homocystinuria, neurodegenerative and neuroinflammatory diseases. In the present study we evaluated the effect of acute and chronic hyperhomocysteinemia on Akt, NF-κB/p65, GSK-3β, as well as Tau protein in hippocampus of rats. For acute treatment, rats received a single injection of homocysteine (0.6 μmol/g body weight) or saline (control). For chronic treatment, rats received daily subcutaneous injections of homocysteine (0.3-0.6 μmol/g body weight) or saline (control) from the 6th to the 28th days-of-age. One or 12h after the last injection, rats were euthanized, the hippocampus was removed and samples were submitted to electrophoresis followed by Western blotting. Results showed that acute hyperhomocysteinemia increases Akt phosphorylation, cytosolic and nuclear immunocontent of NF-κB/p65 subunit and Tau protein phosphorylation, but reduces GSK-3β phosphorylation at 1h after homocysteine injection. However, 12h after acute hyperhomocysteinemia there is no effect on Akt and GSK-3β phosphorylation. Furthermore, chronic hyperhomocysteinemia did not alter Akt and GSK-3β phosphorylation at 1h and 12h after the last administration of this amino acid. Our data showed that Akt, NF-κB/p65, GSK-3β and Tau protein are activated in hippocampus of rats subjected to acute hyperhomocysteinemia, suggesting that these signaling pathways may be, at least in part, important contributors to the neuroinflammation and/or brain dysfunction observed in some hyperhomocystinuric patients.

Antidepressant-like Effect of the Novel MAO Inhibitor 2-(3,4-dimethoxy-phenyl)-4,5-dihydro-1H-imidazole (2-DMPI) in Mice

Progress in Neuro-psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry. Oct, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22525823

Monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors were the first antidepressant drugs to be prescribed and are still used today with great success, especially in patients resistant to other antidepressants. In this study, we evaluated the MAO inhibitory properties and the potential antidepressant action of 2-(3,4-dimethoxy-phenyl)-4,5-dihydro-1H-imidazole (2-DMPI) in mice. We found that 2-DMPI inhibited both MAO isoforms (K(i) values were 1.53 (1.3-1.8) μM and 46.67 (31.8-68.4) μM for MAO-A and MAO-B, respectively) with 30-fold higher selectivity toward MAO-A. In relation to the nature of MAO-A inhibition, 2-DMPI showed to be a mixed and reversible inhibitor. The treatment with 2-DMPI (100-1000 μmol/kg, s.c.) caused a significant decrease in immobility time in the tail suspension test (TST) without affecting locomotor activity, motor coordination or anxiety-related activities. Conversely, moclobemide (1000 μmol/kg, s.c.) caused a significant increase in immobility time in the TST, which appeared to be mediated by a nonspecific effect on motor coordination function. 2-DMPI (300 μmol/kg, s.c.) decreased serotonin turnover in the cerebral cortex, hippocampus and striatum, whereas dopamine turnover was diminished only in the striatum, and norepinephrine turnover was not changed. The antidepressant-like effect of 2-DMPI was inhibited by the pretreatment of mice with methysergide (2 mg/kg, s.c., a non-selective serotonin receptor antagonist), WAY100635 (0.1 mg/kg, s.c., a selective 5-HT(1A) receptor antagonist) or haloperidol (0.05 mg/kg, i.p., a non-selective dopamine receptor antagonist). These results suggest that 2-DMPI is a prototype reversible and preferential MAO-A inhibitor with potential antidepressant activity, due to its modulatory effect on serotonergic and dopaminergic systems.

Revising the M235T Polymorphism Position for the AGT Gene and Reporting a Modifying Variant in the Brazilian Population with Potential Cardiac and Neural Impact

Journal of Molecular Neuroscience : MN. Sep, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22531885

There is a growing need to curate the overwhelming amount of sequencing data which is available in many public databases. For instance, new information shows that the M235T polymorphism at the angiotensinogen gene (AGT) is actually positioned at the position corresponding to the amino acid 268 and not 235. This polymorphism is filled as rs699 in the NCBI SNP database and results in the synthesis of a threonine (T) instead of a methionine (M). It has been widely studied and associated as an important risk factor for several vascular and neuropsychiatric conditions. We faced this new situation during the targeted sequencing of 360 chromosomes from Brazilian subjects studied for the M235T polymorphism, leading to the identification of a novel variation (rs141900991). This report explores the potential impact of such a dinucleotide variation, which promotes the change of alanine (A) to serine (S) at the AGT protein structure (A237S). Considering the previous M268T variation at the four possible haplotypes combined (MA, MS, TA and TS), we performed a comparative hydrophobicity simulation, using the Kyte-Doolittle algorithm, available at the CLB Bio workbench, in the four possible haplotypes. Additional simulations were performed using the programs PolyPhen, I-Mutant and SIFT, in order to evaluate the pathogenicity of both mutations. The predicted hydrophobicity decreases of a similar magnitude, with both MS and TA haplotypes, but the presence of both variations induces a major decrease in hydrophobicity, suggesting a cumulative effect, with possible modifying effect since that this variation per se would limit the hydrophobicity range and the latter chances in finding significant phenotype differences. A better characterization of this kind of variant is particularly important because the current genome wide scan analyses in complex disorders with cardiac or neural etiology are not generating reliable findings, especially if we consider the huge investment with such approach. Additional and unknown variations like this one, with potential modifying effect, might be more common than previously expected.

Efficacy and Safety of Rilpivirine in Treatment-naive, HIV-1-infected Patients with Hepatitis B Virus/hepatitis C Virus Coinfection Enrolled in the Phase III Randomized, Double-blind ECHO and THRIVE Trials

The Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. Aug, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22532465

The efficacy and hepatic safety of the non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors rilpivirine (TMC278) and efavirenz were compared in treatment-naive, HIV-infected adults with concurrent hepatitis B virus (HBV) and/or hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in the pooled week 48 analysis of the Phase III, double-blind, randomized ECHO (NCT00540449) and THRIVE (NCT00543725) trials.

Isolation and Genotyping of Toxoplasma Gondii from Pregnant Dairy Cows (Bos Taurus) Slaughtered

Revista Brasileira De Parasitologia Veterinária = Brazilian Journal of Veterinary Parasitology : Órgão Oficial Do Colégio Brasileiro De Parasitologia Veterinária. Jan-Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22534951

The current study aimed to evaluate serology, and isolate and genotype Toxoplasma gondii strains from pregnant dairy cows, slaughtered in an abattoir for human consumption, and their fetuses. Blood from 60 pregnant dairy cows and blood and tissue samples (brain, lung, heart, and liver) from their fetuses were collected and analyzed in a mouse bioassay. Antibodies against T. gondii were observed in 48.3% of cows and 3.7% of fetuses (IFAT, titers ≥ 50 for cows and 25 for fetuses were considered positive). Fourteen fetuses (23.3%) and six cows (10.0%) were identified as positive in the bioassay. T. gondii was isolated from a blood sample of a cow older than 4 years old in the 6th month of pregnancy, and from a blood sample of a fetus in the 6th month of gestation. These isolates were identified by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) as being of T. gondii and both strains showed type II alleles for all PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) markers tested. T. gondii type II strain from cattle was isolated for the first time in Brazil. The current study also showed that transplacental transmission of T. gondii naturally occurs in dairy cows (23.3%) from Southern Brazil.

Expression, Purification and Structural Analysis of Recombinant RBdh-2His₆, a Spermadhesin from Buck (Capra Hircus) Seminal Plasma

Reproduction, Fertility, and Development. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22541546

Spermadhesins, a family of secretory proteins from the male genital tract of ungulate species, belong to the group of animal lectins. Spermadhesins have a prominent role in different aspects of fertilisation, such as spermatozoid capacitation, acrosomal stabilisation, sperm-oviduct interaction and during sperm-oocyte fusion. Proteins (spermadhesins) in buck seminal plasma were described. In the present study, bodhesin Bdh-2 cDNA present in buck seminal plasma was subcloned with the expression plasmid pTrcHis TOPO used to transform Escherichia coli Top10 One shot cells. The recombinant clones were selected by growth in 50 µg mL⁻¹ ampicillin-containing LB broth and polymerase chain reaction amplification. Recombinant rBdh-2His₆ synthesis was monitored by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and followed by immunoblotting using monoclonal anti-His antibody. Production of rBdh-2 using low temperatures was not satisfactory. Greater production of rBdh-2 occurred with 1.5mM isopropyl βd-thiogalactoside after 2h of induction. The method used to purify rBdh-2 was affinity chromatography on a His-Trap column following ion-exchange chromatography on a DEAE-Sephacel column. The secondary structure of the rBdh-2His₆ was evaluated by spectral profile circular dichroism (CD). The prevalence of secondary structures like β-sheets, with fewer unfolded structures and α-helices, was confirmed. The structure of rBdh-2His₆ remained stable up to 35°C. However, significant structural changes were observed at temperatures higher than 40 °C related to a distortion of the CD spectrum.

Oocyst Shedding in Cats Vaccinated by the Nasal and Rectal Routes with Crude Rhoptry Proteins of Toxoplasma Gondii

Experimental Parasitology. Jun, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22542988

During this study, cats were immunized by the intranasal and rectal routes with crude rhoptry proteins of Toxoplasma gondii admixed with Quil-A. Twenty-five domestic short hair cats divided into five groups (n=5) were used during this evaluation: G1 and G3 cats received 200 μg of the rhoptry proteins with Quil-A (20 μg) by the intranasal and rectal routes, respectively; G2 and G4 cats received bovine serum albumin (BSA, 200 μg/dose) with Quil-A (20 μg); and G5 animals served as unvaccinated controls. All treatments were performed at days 0, 21, 42, and 63. The challenge was done with 800 cysts of the ME49 of T. gondii strain at day 70 (challenge day). The serum IgG, IgM, IgA, and fecal IgA antibody levels were evaluated by using the indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Some animals produced antibody levels beyond cut-off; however, two animals from G1 (OD(mean)=0.308, OD(cut-off)=0.200) and three from G3 (OD(mean)=0.254) demonstrated IgG levels on being challenged, with similar results occurring in two cats from G1 to IgM (OD(mean)=0.279, OD(cut-off)=0.200). Fecal IgA levels were detected in all G1 cats (OD(mean)=0.330, OD(cut-off)=0.065), and in one cat from G3 (OD(mean)=0.167). The serum and fecal humoral immune responses did not correlate with oocyst shedding. Oocyst shedding varied from 98.4% (G1), 87.5% (G2), 53.0% (G3), to 58% (G4), and was lower than that of G5 cats. The prepatent period of cats vaccinated intranasally (G1) was reduced from 6-9.6 to 2.8 days, suggesting protection of environmental contamination, considering cats as the primary source of contamination. The intranasally and rectally administered rhoptry vaccines were able to partially protect cats against T. gondii cysts on being challenged; however, the intranasal method of vaccination yielded better results relative to the rectal route.

Effect of Annexin-A1 Peptide Treatment During Lung Inflammation Induced by Lipopolysaccharide

Pulmonary Pharmacology & Therapeutics. Aug, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22546484

Lung endotoxemia is characterized by neutrophil accumulation, increased vascular permeability and parenchymal injury. This can also affect the endogenous pathways that operate in the host to keep inflammation under control. Here, we demonstrate differential expression of annexin-A1 (AnxA1) protein in mice after the local or intraperitoneal administration of lipopolysaccharide (LPS; 1 mg/kg) in mice and the regulation of the endotoxemic inflammation after the pre-treatment with the AnxA1 peptidomimetic Ac2-26. The intranasal administration of LPS induced the leukocyte migration and cytokine release to the alveolar space, whereas the peritoneal administration of LPS generated a deregulated cellular and cytokine response, with a marked degree of leukocyte adhesion in the microcirculation. The peptide Ac2-26 pre-treatment inhibited the leukocyte migration and the pro-inflammatory cytokine release. Also, it induced the expression of endogenous AnxA1 and the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10. In conclusion, our data obtained from endotoxemia induced by local or intraperitoneal LPS administration suggested that the molecular mechanisms induced by AnxA1 peptidomimetic Ac2-26 lead to the regulation of leukocyte activation/migration and cytokine production induced by LPS.

Altered Baroreflex and Autonomic Modulation in Monosodium Glutamate-induced Hyperadipose Rats

Metabolism: Clinical and Experimental. Oct, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22554831

We aimed to examine the cardiovascular function by tonic and baroreflex alterations in obese rats induced by monosodium glutamate (MSG). Neonatal male Wistar rats were injected with MSG (4 mg/g body weight) or equimolar saline (control, C). At 90 days, all rats were anesthetized for catheterization of the femoral artery for mean arterial pressure (MAP) and heart rate (HR) recordings in the conscious state. After baseline, we performed IV treatment with hexamethonium (25 mg/kg), or atropine (1 mg/kg) or propranolol (3 mg/kg). We also performed the spectral analysis of heart rate variability (HRV) and baroreflex sensitivity. Baseline comparison showed that obese rats are hypertensive compared with control (C=110±2 mmHg; MSG=: 123±3 mmHg, P<0.05). After ganglionic blockade with hexamethonium the differences in MAP between control and obese rats disappeared. Beta adrenergic blockade with propranolol induced a greater decrease in heart rate compared with control. The analysis of HRV showed that obese rats have increased modulation by both components of the autonomic nervous system compared with control rats. The baroreflex gain showed increased sensitivity for the parasympathetic component in the obese rats (C=-2.41±0.25; MSG=-3.34±0.23 bpm/mmHg) compared with control. Our data suggest that both components of autonomic cardiac tonus and the parasympathetic component of the baroreflex sensitivity are increased in the MSG obese rat. It is possible that the parasympathetic alterations observed in these MSG obese rats may have originated from central areas of cardiovascular control.

The Impact of Immunohistochemical Expression of Nitric Oxide Synthases on Clinical and Pathological Features of Renal Cell Carcinoma

World Journal of Urology. May, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22562149

PURPOSE: To evaluate the immunohistochemical expression of nitric oxide synthase (NOS) types 1, 2, and 3 in intratumoral and non-neoplastic samples of renal cell carcinoma (RCC) and correlate it with the clinical and pathological features of this malignancy. METHODS: We analyzed 110 patients with RCC underwent radical nephrectomy (RN) or partial nephrectomy (PN) by streptavidin-biotin peroxidase method, tissue microarray, and digital microscopy. As endpoints, NOS expression was correlated with pathological features, overall survival (OS), and cancer-specific survival (CSS). RESULTS: Non-neoplastic samples had higher NOS3 and lower NOS 2 levels than RCC tissues. Greater expression of all NOS isoforms was associated with larger tumors. High NOS1 expression correlated with microscopic venous invasion (MVI) (p = 0.046) and lymph node metastases (p = 0.007). High NOS2 expression was linked to MVI, more RN performed, and male gender (p = 0.035, p = 0.003, and p =  0.027, respectively). High NOS3 expression correlated with lymph node metastases (p = 0.039), microlymphatic invasion (p = 0.029), invasion of the renal pelvis and ureter (p = 0.004), RN (p = 0.003), and shorter OS (58.1 vs. 79.4 % respectively, p = 0.033) by univariate analysis. DFS was not influenced by any NOS isoform. By multivariate analysis, the risk factors for death were TNM stages III and IV (hazard ratio [HR] = 4.5), high Fuhrman's grade (HR = 2.9), Karnofsky performance status ≤80 (HR = 2.5), progression (HR = 5.5), and recurrence (HR = 6.3). Stage III disease was an independent risk factor for recurrence (HR = 9.5). CONCLUSIONS: High NOS expression in RCC is associated with a poor prognosis and larger tumors. NOS3 influences OS by univariate analysis.

Mitochondrial Compartmentalization of Redox Processes

Free Radical Biology & Medicine. Jun 1-15, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22564526

Knowledge of location and intracellular subcompartmentalization is essential for the understanding of redox processes, because oxidants, owing to their reactive nature, must be generated close to the molecules modified in both signaling and damaging processes. Here we discuss known redox characteristics of various mitochondrial microenvironments. Points covered are the locations of mitochondrial oxidant generation, characteristics of antioxidant systems in various mitochondrial compartments, and diffusion characteristics of oxidants in mitochondria. We also review techniques used to measure redox state in mitochondrial subcompartments, antioxidants targeted to mitochondrial subcompartments, and methodological concerns that must be addressed when using these tools.

Molecular Modeling Studies on Nucleoside Hydrolase from the Biological Warfare Agent Brucella Suis

Journal of Biomolecular Structure & Dynamics. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22571438

Brucella suis is a dangerous biological warfare agent already used for military purposes. This bacteria cause brucellosis, a zoonosis highly infective and difficult to fight. An important selective target for chemotherapy against this disease is nucleoside hydrolase (NH), an enzyme still not found in mammals. We present here the first three-dimensional structure of B. suis NH (BsNH) and propose this enzyme as a molecular target to the drug design in the fight against brucellosis. In addition, we performed molecular docking studies, aiming to analyze the three-dimensional positioning of nine known inhibitors of Chritidia fasciculata NH (CfNH) in the active sites of BsNH and CfNH. We also analyzed the main interactions of some of these compounds inside the active site of BsNH and the relevant factors to biological activity. These results, together with further molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, pointed out to the most promising compound as lead for the design of potential inhibitors of BsNH. Most of the docking and MD results corroborated to each other and the docking results also suggested a good correlation with experimental data.

The Influence of Early Life Interventions on Olfactory Memory Related to Palatable Food, and on Oxidative Stress Parameters and Na+/K+-ATPase Activity in the Hippocampus and Olfactory Bulb of Female Adult Rats

Neurochemical Research. Aug, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22573388

The effects of neonatal handling and the absence of ovarian hormones on the olfactory memory related to a palatable food in adulthood were investigated. Oxidative stress parameters and Na+/K+-ATPase activity in the hippocampus and olfactory bulb of adult pre-puberty ovariectomized female rats handled or not in the neonatal period were also evaluated. Litters were non-handled or handled (10 min/day, days 1-10 after birth). Females from each litter were divided into: OVX (subjected to ovariectomy), sham, and intact. When adults, olfactory memory related to a palatable food (chocolate) was evaluate using the hole-board olfactory task. Additionally, oxidative stress parameters and Na+/K+-ATPase activity were measured in the hippocampus and olfactory bulb. No difference between groups was observed considering olfactory memory evaluation. Neonatal handled rats presented an increase in Na+/K+-ATPase activity in the hippocampus and in the olfactory bulb, compared to non-handled ones. Considering the surgical procedure, there was a decrease in Na+/K+-ATPase and catalase activities in sham and OVX groups, compared to intact animals in the olfactory bulb. We concluded that olfactory memory related to a palatable food in adulthood was not affected by neonatal handling or by pre-puberty surgery, with or without removal of ovaries. The difference observed between groups in catalase and Na+/K+-ATPase activity does not seem to be related to the olfactory memory. Additionally, the increase in Na+/K+-ATPase activity (an enzyme that maintains the neurochemical gradient necessary for neuronal excitability) induced by neonatal handling may be related to neuroplastic changes in the hippocampus and olfactory bulb.

Improving Patient Access to Specialized Health Care: the Telehealth Network of Minas Gerais, Brazil

Bulletin of the World Health Organization. May, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22589571

The Brazilian population lacks equitable access to specialized health care and diagnostic tests, especially in remote municipalities, where health professionals often feel isolated and staff turnover is high. Telehealth has the potential to improve patients' access to specialized health care, but little is known about it in terms of cost-effectiveness, access to services or user satisfaction.

Spectrofluorimetric Determination of Tetrabenazine After Photochemical Derivatization in Basic Medium

Spectrochimica Acta. Part A, Molecular and Biomolecular Spectroscopy. Apr, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22591799

Photochemical derivatization is proposed for the spectrofluorimetric determination of tetrabenazine (TBZ). A central composite design was used to adjust experimental conditions (60min of UV in a 0.45molL(-1) NaOH solution) enabling the improvement of the analyte signal-to-blank ratio of one order of magnitude, when compared to the TBZ original fluorescence. Limit of quantification was 4.7×10(-8)molL(-1) but the detection power can be improved at least 10 times using solid phase extraction that also allows the separation of the analyte from matrix components, enabling the analysis of biologic fluids. Linear range covered at least three orders of magnitude. The combined uncertainty of the determination (at a 5×10(-6)molL(-1)) was 16%. Recoveries of TBZ in the analyses of a pharmaceutical formulation were in agreement with the ones obtained using a HPLC method. Recovery in saliva (5×10(-7)molL(-1) of TBZ) was 90±3% (n=3). The procedure minimizes the use of toxic chemical derivatization reagents and the generation of hazardous waste.

Cytokines in Schizophrenia: Possible Role of Anti-inflammatory Medications in Clinical and Preclinical Stages

Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences. Jun, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22624729

In this paper, we review the literature on the efficacy of anti-inflammatory agents as neuroprotectors in clinical and preclinical stages of schizophrenia.

Importance of Interplane Coupling on the Magnetic Phases of Quasi-two-dimensional Tantalites

Journal of Physics. Condensed Matter : an Institute of Physics Journal. Jun, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22641091

We propose a three-dimensional model to describe magnetic interactions in a class of tantalite compounds of compositions A(x)A'(1-x)Ta(2)O(6), with A,A' = Fe, Co or Ni. Due to the quasi-two-dimensional nature of the magnetism in these compounds, experimental data have been previously interpreted using two-dimensional models. These are anisotropic Heisenberg models or Ising models and include competing exchange interactions from different neighbors. Taking into account all the relevant exchange terms, which include interplane interactions, we show that the latter allows us to understand the various low-temperature magnetic phases observed by neutron diffraction in this family of compounds. This is done by studying the eigenvalues of the exchange-interaction matrix in wavevector space for different sets of coupling parameters, of which those relative to in-plane interactions have been obtained from high-temperature series analysis of the magnetic susceptibility. This approach is rather general and the model presented here is directly applicable to isostructural compounds like ASb(2)O(6).

Mobilization of Reserve Proteins and Activities of Cysteine Peptidases During Germinative and Post-Germinative Events of Cowpea Seeds

Protein and Peptide Letters. Jun, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22670671

Cysteine peptidases are the best characterized peptidases among those involved with storage protein mobilization during seed germination. In the present work we show two major groups of cysteine peptidase activities, one of higher (55 to 97 kDa) and other with lower (15 to 20 kDa) molecular masses which are temporally activated after 24 and 48 HAI, respectively, in germinating cowpeas. The former group is found both in protein bodies and in cytoplasmic fraction, while the latter is mostly present outside protein bodies. A third cysteine peptidase activity of ~37 kDa was specifically active at quiescent cotyledons and at 12 and 60 hours after imbibition (HAI). Main peptidase activities of albumin fractions were synchronizedly detected with radicle emergence at 36 HAI. Major vicilin mobilization was more pronounced from 60 HAI onwards and steadily increased until 144 HAI, when low levels of the smallest vicilin subunit were present. Cysteine peptidases were susceptible to iodoacetamide, E-64, iodoacetic acid, pCMB and β-mercaptoethanol, except for the ~37 kDa peptidase, which was not affected by any of the inhibitors. By a two-dimensional native/SDS-PAGE combination it was observed an apparent linear arrangement of protein breakdown products as well as of peptidase activity spots. The finding may indicate a complex set of sequential proteolytic events where peptidases induces or activates new peptidases, which may act upon different aggregates or zymogens, and these hydrolysis products appear in a line of constant decreasing Rf x Mr ratio.

Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine : ECAM. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22685486

A Community Study of Factors Related to Poorly Controlled Asthma Among Brazilian Urban Children

PloS One. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22693565

Asthma constitutes a serious public health problem in many regions of the world, including the city of Salvador, State of Bahia-Brazil. The purpose of this study was to analyse the factors associated with poor asthma control.

The Intense Starburst HDF 850.1 in a Galaxy Overdensity at Z ≈ 5.2 in the Hubble Deep Field

Nature. Jun, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22699613

The Hubble Deep Field provides one of the deepest multiwavelength views of the distant Universe and has led to the detection of thousands of galaxies seen throughout cosmic time. An early map of the Hubble Deep Field at a wavelength of 850 micrometres, which is sensitive to dust emission powered by star formation, revealed the brightest source in the field, dubbed HDF 850.1 (ref. 2). For more than a decade, and despite significant efforts, no counterpart was found at shorter wavelengths, and it was not possible to determine its redshift, size or mass. Here we report a redshift of z = 5.183 for HDF 850.1, from a millimetre-wave molecular line scan. This places HDF 850.1 in a galaxy overdensity at z ≈ 5.2, corresponding to a cosmic age of only 1.1 billion years after the Big Bang. This redshift is significantly higher than earlier estimates and higher than those of most of the hundreds of submillimetre-bright galaxies identified so far. The source has a star-formation rate of 850 solar masses per year and is spatially resolved on scales of 5 kiloparsecs, with an implied dynamical mass of about 1.3 × 10(11) solar masses, a significant fraction of which is present in the form of molecular gas. Despite our accurate determination of redshift and position, a counterpart emitting starlight remains elusive.

Renal Sympathetic Nerve Activity is Increased in Monosodium Glutamate Induced Hyperadipose Rats

Neuroscience Letters. Aug, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22705582

The literature suggests that both obesity and hypertension are associated with increased sympathetic nerve activity. In the present study we evaluated the renal sympathetic nerve activity (RSNA), mean arterial pressure (MAP) and heart rate (HR) in hyperadipose rats induced by neonatal administration of monosodium glutamate (MSG). Neonatal Wistar male rats were injected with MSG (4 mg/g body weight ID) or equimolar saline (control) for 5 days. At 90th day, all rats were anesthetized (urethane 1.4 g/kg) and prepared for MAP, HR and renal sympathetic nerve activity recordings. The anesthetized MSG rats presented baseline hypertension and increased baseline RSNA compared with control. Our results suggest the involvement of the renal sympathetic nervous system in the physiopathology of the MSG obesity.

Application of 4D-QSAR Studies to a Series of Raloxifene Analogs and Design of Potential Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulators

Molecules (Basel, Switzerland). 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22706372

Four-dimensional quantitative structure-activity relationship (4D-QSAR) analysis was applied on a series of 54 2-arylbenzothiophene derivatives, synthesized by Grese and coworkers, based on raloxifene (an estrogen receptor-alpha antagonist), and evaluated as ERa ligands and as inhibitors of estrogen-stimulated proliferation of MCF-7 breast cancer cells. The conformations of each analogue, sampled from a molecular dynamics simulation, were placed in a grid cell lattice according to three trial alignments, considering two grid cell sizes (1.0 and 2.0 Ã…). The QSAR equations, generated by a combined scheme of genetic algorithms (GA) and partial least squares (PLS) regression, were evaluated by "leave-one-out" cross-validation, using a training set of 41 compounds. External validation was performed using a test set of 13 compounds. The obtained 4D-QSAR models are in agreement with the proposed mechanism of action for raloxifene. This study allowed a quantitative prediction of compounds' potency and supported the design of new raloxifene analogs.

Acute Aortic Insufficiency Due to Avulsion of Aortic Valve Comissure

Revista Brasileira De Cirurgia Cardiovascular : órgão Oficial Da Sociedade Brasileira De Cirurgia Cardiovascular. Jan-Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22729316

A 66-year-old male patient, prior hypertension, a history of orthopnea, palpitations and chest pain of sudden onset, which was diagnosed as spontaneous avulsion of aortic valve commissure and consequent aortic insufficiency progressing to acute left heart failure refractory to medical treatment. The patient underwent early surgical replacement of the aortic valve by a bioprosthesis, and presented satisfactory postoperative course. Currently, four years after the event, still in attendance in functional class I.

Simultaneous Myocardial and Supra-aortic Trunks Revascularization

Revista Brasileira De Cirurgia Cardiovascular : órgão Oficial Da Sociedade Brasileira De Cirurgia Cardiovascular. Jan-Mar, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22729317

We report the case of a 58-year-old patient, with a three vessel disease with unstable angina. Due to refractory angina, she was referred to urgent coronary artery bypass graft (CABG). In the preoperative evaluation were found severe obstructive lesions in the brachiocephalic trunk origin, left common carotid origin and left internal carotid artery. The patient underwent CABG, supra-aortic trunks revascularization (extra-anatomic bypass) and carotid endarterectomy in the same procedure. She presented an uneventful recovery and was discharged home on the seventh postoperative day. Currently, two years after the procedure, she continues under follow-up, symptomless.

First Principles Calculations of Thermodynamics and Kinetic Parameters and Molecular Dynamics Simulations of Acetylcholinesterase Reactivators: Can Mouse Data Provide New Insights into Humans?

Journal of Biomolecular Structure & Dynamics. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22731788

We have applied a theoretical methodology, previously developed to evaluate the association and kinetic reactivation constants of oximes, comparing theoretical data obtained for human acetylcholinesterase (HsAChE) with in vitro results from Mus musculus AChE (MmAChE) previously reported in the literature. Our results, further checked by additional molecular dynamics simulations steps, showed a good correlation between the theoretical and experimental data, supporting the methodology as appropriate for prediction of thermodynamic and kinetic parameters and corroborated MmAChE as a suitable model for studies with HsAChE.

Molecular Identification and in Vitro Response to Antifungal Drugs of Clinical Isolates of Exserohilum

Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. Sep, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22733074

Exserohilum is an agent of human and animal mycoses. Although classification has been based on a few subtle morphological differences, three species of clinical interest have been traditionally accepted. In this study, by using a multigene sequence analysis, we have demonstrated that Exserohilum longirostratum and E. mcginnisii are probable synonyms of E. rostratum. The isolates tested were mainly from the nasal region. Antifungal susceptibility testing demonstrated high activity of the eight agents tested against this fungus.

Effects of Dopamine and Dobutamine on Isoflurane-induced Hypotension in Hispaniolan Amazon Parrots (Amazona Ventralis)

American Journal of Veterinary Research. Jul, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22738045

To assess the effects of dopamine and dobutamine on the blood pressure of isoflurane-anesthetized Hispaniolan Amazon parrots (Amazona ventralis).

Candida Glabrata: an Emerging Pathogen in Brazilian Tertiary Care Hospitals

Medical Mycology : Official Publication of the International Society for Human and Animal Mycology. Jul, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22762208

Candida glabrata is an infrequent cause of candidemia in Brazilian public hospitals. We investigated putative differences in the epidemiology of candidemia in institutions with different sources of funding. Prospective laboratory-based surveillance of candidemia was conducted in seven private and two public Brazilian tertiary care hospitals. Among 4,363 episodes of bloodstream infection, 300 were caused by Candida spp. (6.9%). Incidence rates were significantly higher in public hospitals, i.e., 2.42 vs. 0.91 episodes per 1,000 admissions (P< 0.01). Patients in private hospitals were older, more likely to be in an intensive care unit and to have been exposed to fluconazole before candidemia. Candida parapsilosis was more frequently recovered as the etiologic agent in public (33% vs. 16%, P< 0.001) hospitals, whereas C. glabrata was more frequently isolated in private hospitals (13% vs. 3%, P < 0.001). Fluconazole resistance among C. glabrata isolates was more frequent in private hospitals (76.5% vs. 20%, P = 0.02). The 30-day mortality was slightly higher among patients in public hospitals (53% vs. 43%, P = 0.10). Candida glabrata is an emerging pathogen in private institutions and in this setting, fluconazole should not be considered as a safe option for primary therapy of candidemia.

Evidence That Conditioned Avoidance Responses Are Reinforced by Positive Prediction Errors Signaled by Tonic Striatal Dopamine

Behavioural Brain Research. Jul, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22771418

We conducted an experiment in which hedonia, salience and prediction error hypotheses predicted different patterns of dopamine (DA) release in the striatum during learning of conditioned avoidance responses (CARs). The data strongly favor the latter hypothesis. It predicts that during learning of the 2-way active avoidance CAR task, positive prediction errors generated when rats do not receive an anticipated footshock (which is better than expected) cause DA release that reinforces the instrumental avoidance action. In vivo microdialysis in the rat striatum showed that extracellular DA concentration increased during early CAR learning and decreased throughout training returning to baseline once the response was well learned. In addition, avoidance learning was proportional to the degree of DA release. Critically, exposure of rats to the same stimuli but in an unpredictable, unavoidable, and inescapable manner, did not produce alterations from baseline DA levels as predicted by the prediction error but not hedonic or salience hypotheses. In addition, rats with a partial lesion of substantia nigra DA neurons, which did not show increased DA levels during learning, failed to learn this task. These data represent clear and unambiguous evidence that it was the factor positive prediction error, and not hedonia or salience, which caused increase in the tonic level of striatal DA and which reinforced learning of the instrumental avoidance response.

[Prevalence of Depression and Associated Factors in a Low Income Community of Porto Alegre, Rio Grande Do Sul]

Revista Brasileira De Epidemiologia = Brazilian Journal of Epidemiology. Jun, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22782100

To estimate the prevalence and demographic and socioeconomic factors associated with depression in adults and in the elderly in a low income community of Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul.

Case of Anaphylaxis Induced by Rocuronium Treated with Sugammadex

Revista Brasileira De Anestesiologia. Jul, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22793969

Anaphylaxis during anesthesia is a rare event that may occur in up to 1:20,000 cases and approximately 60% to 70% of these cases are secondary to the use of muscle relaxants, particularly succinylcholine and rocuronium. The aim of this report is to describe the treatment of a case of rocuronium-induced anaphylaxis with inadequate response to traditional therapy, and the case resolution after using sugammadex.

Species-specific Differences in the Inhibition of Human and Zebrafish 11β-hydroxysteroid Dehydrogenase 2 by Thiram and Organotins

Toxicology. Nov, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22796344

Dithiocarbamates and organotins can inhibit enzymes by interacting with functionally essential sulfhydryl groups. Both classes of chemicals were shown to inhibit human 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 2 (11β-HSD2), which converts active cortisol into inactive cortisone and has a role in renal and intestinal electrolyte regulation and in the feto-placental barrier to maternal glucocorticoids. In fish, 11β-HSD2 has a dual role by inactivating glucocorticoids and generating the major androgen 11-ketotestosterone. Inhibition of this enzyme may enhance glucocorticoid and diminish androgen effects in fish. Here, we characterized 11β-HSD2 activity of the model species zebrafish. A comparison with human and mouse 11β-HSD2 revealed species-specific substrate preference. Unexpectedly, assessment of the effects of thiram and several organotins on the activity of zebrafish 11β-HSD2 showed weak inhibition by thiram and no inhibition by any of the organotins tested. Sequence comparison revealed the presence of an alanine at position 253 on zebrafish 11β-HSD2, corresponding to cysteine-264 in the substrate-binding pocket of the human enzyme. Substitution of alanine-253 by cysteine resulted in a more than 10-fold increased sensitivity of zebrafish 11β-HSD2 to thiram. Mutating cysteine-264 on human 11β-HSD2 to serine resulted in 100-fold lower inhibitory activity. Our results demonstrate significant species differences in the sensitivity of human and zebrafish 11β-HSD2 to inhibition by thiram and organotins. Site-directed mutagenesis revealed a key role of cysteine-264 in the substrate-binding pocket of human 11β-HSD2 for sensitivity to sulfhydryl modifying agents.

Effects of Azadirachtin on Tetranychus Urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae) and Its Compatibility with Predatory Mites (Acari: Phytoseiidae) on Strawberry

Pest Management Science. May, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22807305

BACKGROUND: The spider mite, Tetranychus urticae, is the major strawberry pest in Brazil. The main strategies for its control comprise synthetic acaricides and predatory mites. The recent register of a commercial formula of azadirachtin (Azamax(®) 12 g L(-1) ) can be viable for control of T. urticae. In this work, the effects of azadirachtin on T. urticae and its compatibility with predatory mites Neoseiulus californicus and Phytoseiulus macropilis in the strawberry crop were evaluated. RESULTS: Azadirachtin was efficient against T. urticae, with a mortality rate similar to that of abamectin. In addition, the azadirachtin showed lower biological persistence (7 days) than abamectin (21 days). Azadirachtin did not cause significant mortality of adult predatory mites (N. californicus and P. macropilis), but it did reduce fecundity by 50%. However, egg viability of the azadirachtin treatments was similar to that of the control (>80% viability). The use of azadirachtin and predatory mites is a valuable tool for controlling T. urticae in strawberry crop. CONCLUSIONS: Azadirachtin provided effective control of T. urticae and is compatible with the predatory mites N. californicus and P. macropilis. It is an excellent tool to be incorporated into integrated pest management for strawberry crop in Brazil. Copyright © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry.

Effect of the Type of Emulsifying Salt on Microstructure and Rheological Properties of "requeijão Cremoso" Processed Cheese Spreads

Journal of Food Science. Aug, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22809121

The role of different types of emulsifying salts-sodium citrate (TSC), sodium hexametaphosphate (SHMP), sodium tripolyphosphate (STPP) and tetrasodium pyrophosphate (TSPP)-on microstructure and rheology of "requeijão cremoso" processed cheese was determined. The cheeses manufactured with TSC, TSPP, and STPP behaved like concentrated solutions, while the cheese manufactured with SHMP exhibited weak gel behavior and the lowest values for the phase angle (G"/G'). This means that SHMP cheese had the protein network with the largest amount of molecular interactions, which can be explained by its highest degree of fat emulsification. Rotational viscometry indicated that all the spreadable cheeses behaved like pseudoplastic fluids. The cheeses made with SHMP and TSPP presented low values for the flow behavior index, meaning that viscosity was more dependent on shear rate. Regarding the consistency index, TSPP cheese showed the highest value, which could be attributed to the combined effect of its high pH and homogeneous fat particle size distribution.

Regulation of Inflammatory Chemokine Receptors on Blood T Cells Associated to the Circulating Versus Liver Chemokines in Dengue Fever

PloS One. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22815692

Little is known about the role of chemokines/chemokines receptors on T cells in natural DENV infection. Patients from DENV-2 and -3- outbreaks were studied prospectively during the acute or convalescent phases. Expression of chemokine receptor and activation markers on lymphocyte subpopulations were determined by flow cytometry analysis, plasma chemokine ligands concentrations were measured by ELISA and quantification of CCL5/RANTES(+) cells in liver tissues from fatal dengue cases was performed by immunochemistry. In the acute DENV-infection, T-helper/T-cytotoxic type-1 cell (Th1/Tc1)-related CCR5 is significantly higher expressed on both CD4 and CD8 T cells. The Th1-related CXCR3 is up-regulated among CD4 T cells and Tc2-related CCR4 is up-regulated among CD8 T cells. In the convalescent phase, all chemokine receptor or chemokine ligand expression tends to reestablish control healthy levels. Increased CCL2/MCP-1 and CCL4/MIP-1β but decreased CCL5/RANTES levels were observed in DENV-patients during acute infection. Moreover, we showed an increased CD107a expression on CCR5 or CXCR3-expressing T cells and higher expression of CD29, CD44(HIGH) and CD127(LOW) markers on CCR4-expressing CD8 T cells in DENV-patients when compared to controls. Finally, liver from dengue fatal patients showed increased number of cells expressing CCL5/RANTES in three out of four cases compared to three death from a non-dengue patient. In conclusion, both Th1-related CCR5 and CXCR3 among CD4 T cells have a potential ability to exert cytotoxicity function. Moreover, Tc1-related CCR5 and Tc2-related CCR4 among CD8 T cells have a potential ability to exert effector function and migration based on cell markers evaluated. The CCR5 expression would be promoting an enhanced T cell recruitment into liver, a hypothesis that is corroborated by the CCL5/RANTES increase detected in hepatic tissue from dengue fatal cases. The balance between protective and pathogenic immune response mediated by chemokines during dengue fever will be discussed.

The Highly Dynamic CRISPR1 System of Streptococcus Agalactiae Controls the Diversity of Its Mobilome

Molecular Microbiology. Sep, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22834929

Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) confer immunity against mobile genetic elements (MGEs) in prokaryotes. Streptococcus agalactiae, a leading cause of neonatal infections contains in its genome two CRISPR/Cas systems. We show that type 1-C CRISPR2 is present in few strains but type 2-A CRISPR1 is ubiquitous. Comparative sequence analysis of the CRISPR1 spacer content of 351 S. agalactiae strains revealed that it is extremely diverse due to the acquisition of new spacers, spacer duplications and spacer deletions that witness the dynamics of this system. The spacer content profile mirrors the S. agalactiae population structure. Transfer of a conjugative transposon targeted by CRISPR1 selected for spacer rearrangements, suggesting that deletions and duplications pre-exist in the population. The comparison of protospacers located within MGE or the core genome and protospacer-associated motif-shuffling demonstrated that the GG motif is sufficient to discriminate self and non-self and for spacer selection and integration. Strikingly more than 40% of the 949 different CRISPR1 spacers identified target MGEs found in S. agalactiae genomes. We thus propose that the S. agalactiae type II-A CRISPR1/Cas system modulates the cohabitation of the species with its mobilome, as such contributing to the diversity of MGEs in the population.

Role of Hysterectomy in the Management of Patients with Gestational Trophoblastic Neoplasia: Importance of Receiving Treatment in Reference Centers

The Journal of Reproductive Medicine. Jul-Aug, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22838254

To evaluate hysterectomy prevalence, indications and impact on clinical outcomes in a reference center in southern Brazil.

[Adherence to Drug Treatment Among Registered Users in the "HIPERDIA" Program in Teresina in the State of Piauí]

Ciência & Saúde Coletiva. Jul, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22872351

Arterial hypertension and diabetes mellitus are among the most chronic diseases prevalent in Brazil. The study sought to evaluate the socioeconomic profile and the therapeutic adherence of users registered in the HIPERDIA Program in Teresina in the State of Piauí. This research was conducted in the Primary Healthcare Units, where a questionnaire was given to four hundred people evaluating their adherence based on the Batalla and Morisky-Green tests. The socioeconomic profile of interviewees was as follows: senior citizens, women, married with 1 to 4 years of study, pensioners and salaried employees. Only 22.5% of hypertensive and 30.7% of diabetic interviewees were considered adherents according to Batalla, and among all of them only 26.75% were adherents according to Morisky-Green. There was no association between sociodemographic and clinical variables and adherence according to Morisky-Green, however there was an association with the type of morbidity presented. In light of these results, health education is the main strategy to improve adherence of users as well as the participation of professionals in the Family Healthcare Team, including the pharmacist, the nutritionist and the physical trainer.

Construction and Assessment of Reaction Models of Class I EPSP Synthase. Part II: Investigation of the EPSP Ketal

Journal of Biomolecular Structure & Dynamics. Aug, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22877309

Although the proposed mechanisms are reasonable, there are still many questions about the 5-enolpyruvyl shikimate-3-phosphate (EPSP) synthase mechanism that are difficult to answer by experimental means alone. EPSP synthase is a key enzyme in the shikimic acid pathway, which is found only in plants and some micro-organisms and is also molecular target of glyphosate, active component of one of the top-selling herbicides. In the study of reaction mechanism of EPSP synthase, in addition to inorganic phosphate and EPSP products, after long time at equilibrium, it was shown that a side product is formed, the EPSP ketal. In this line, studies using density functional theory (DFT) techniques were performed to investigate the reaction mechanism of formation of EPSP and the corresponding ketal. Our findings indicate some key amino acid residues in the EPSP synthase mechanism and a possible route for the formation of the EPSP ketal.

Left and Right Ventricular Function and Volume Assessment in Young Thalassemia Major Patients with No Related Myocardial Iron Overload

Annals of Hematology. Aug, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22878458

Thalassemia major (TM) patients have altered ventricular volumes and ejection fraction compared to normals, although evidence for these findings stem from restricted patient groups and has never been reproduced. We sought to evaluate cardiac parameters by cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) in a group of young TM patients not covered by previous studies that are more representative of the TM population in many countries. Seventy patients including 40 TM with normal myocardial iron concentrations, and 30 age- and gender-matched normal (NL) volunteers underwent a CMR study for assessment of left and right ventricle volumes and function using a 1.5-T scanner. Left and right ventricle ejection fraction, indexed systolic and diastolic volumes, and indexed mass were compared between the two groups. Mean age of TM patients was 18.2 ± 7.1 versus 17.5 ± 8.5 years in NL with no significant differences (P = 0.73). There was no difference in left ventricular (LV) ejection fraction between the groups (TM 64.9 ± 5.7 %, NL 64.9 ± 5.2 %; P = 0.97). LV normalized end-diastolic and end-systolic volumes were significantly higher in patients with TM compared to NL volunteers (76.8 ± 19.4 versus 66.6 ± 11.7 mL/m(2), P = 0.008, and 27.0 ± 8.8 versus 23.6 ± 5.0 mL/m(2), P = 0.045). LV indexed mass was also higher in TM patients compared to NL (51.2 ± 11.9 versus 42.0 ± 8.5 g/m(2), P < 0.001). No significant differences were observed in right ventricular parameters. In conclusion, younger patients with TM do not present different left or right ventricular function values compared to normal controls despite having increased left ventricular volumes and mass.

Geopropolis from Melipona Scutellaris Decreases the Mechanical Inflammatory Hypernociception by Inhibiting the Production of IL-1β and TNF-α

Journal of Ethnopharmacology. Sep, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22885134

The pharmacological activity of geopropolis collected by stingless bees (important and threatened pollinators), a product widely used in folk medicine by several communities in Brazil, especially in the Northeast Region, needs to be studied.

Hsp65-producing Lactococcus Lactis Prevents Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis in Mice by Inducing CD4+LAP+ Regulatory T Cells

Journal of Autoimmunity. Aug, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22939403

Heat shock proteins (Hsps) participate in the cellular response to stress and they are hiperexpressed in inflammatory conditions. They are also known to play a major role in immune modulation, controlling, for instance, autoimmune responses. In this study, we showed that oral administration of a recombinant Lactococcus lactis strain that produces and releases LPS-free Hsp65 prevented the development of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) in C57BL/6 mice. This was confirmed by the reduced inflammatory cell infiltrate and absence of injury signs in the spinal cord. The effect was associated with reduced IL-17 and increased IL-10 production in mesenteric lymph node and spleen cell cultures. Hsp65-producing-L.lactis-fed mice had a remarkable increase in the number of natural and inducible CD4+Foxp3+ regulatory T (Treg) cells and CD4+LAP+ (Latency-associated peptide) Tregs - which express the membrane-bound TGF-β - in spleen, inguinal and mesenteric lymph nodes as well as in spinal cord. Moreover, many Tregs co-expressed Foxp3 and LAP. In vivo depletion of LAP+ cells abrogated the effect of Hsp65-producing L. lactis in EAE prevention and worsened disease in medium-fed mice. Thus, Hsp65-L.lactis seems to boost this critical regulatory circuit involved in controlling EAE development in mice.

Immunohistochemical Expression of CD44s in Renal Cell Carcinoma Lacks Independent Prognostic Significance

International Braz J Urol : Official Journal of the Brazilian Society of Urology. Jul, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22951174

Purpose: To analyze the immunohistochemical expression of the standard isoform of CD44 (CD44s) adhesion molecule in clear cell renal cell carcinoma (CCRCC) and its impact on clinical outcomes. Materials and Methods: Ninety-nine consecutive patients treated surgically for RCC between 1992 and 2009 were selected. A single pathologist reviewed all cases to effect a uniform reclassification and determine the most representative tumor areas for construction of a tissue microarray. The same pathologist, who was blinded to the outcome of the cases, semi-quantitatively scored the staining intensity of CD44s in all specimens. The counting was done using the H-Score algorithm. Results: Of the 99 immunostained RCC specimens, 57(57.7 %) showed low expression, and 42(42.4 %) showed high expression levels of CD44s. The expression of CD44s was directly associated with tumor size (p = 0.03), clinical stage (p = 0.02) and Fuhrman grade (p = 0.02). Disease specifi c survival (DSS) rates for patients whose specimens expressed low and high levels of CD44s was 88.1 % and 67.5 %, respectively (p = 0.009). Progression free survival (PFS) rates in patients with low and high expression of CD44s were 78.8 % and 61.7 %, respectively (p = 0.05). Classical features such as the presence of metastasis and clinical stage remained isolated predictors of survival. Conclusions: Immunohistochemical expression of CD44s was associated with important clinical variables such as stage and Fuhrman grade. However, it was not an independent predictor of survival. Therefore, we believe it has a limited role as a prognostic marker in patients with CCRCC.

Methylphenidate Induces Lipid and Protein Damage in Prefrontal Cortex, but Not in Cerebellum, Striatum and Hippocampus of Juvenile Rats

Metabolic Brain Disease. Sep, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22968482

The use of psychostimulant methylphenidate has increased in recent years for the treatment of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder in children and adolescents. However, the behavioral and neurochemical changes promoted by its use are not yet fully understood, particularly when used for a prolonged period during stages of brain development. Thus, the aim of this study was to determine some parameters of oxidative stress in encephalic structures of juvenile rats subjected to chronic methylphenidate treatment. Wistar rats received intraperitoneal injections of methylphenidate (2.0 mg/kg) once a day, from the 15th to the 45th day of age or an equivalent volume of 0.9% saline solution (controls). Two hours after the last injection, animals were euthanized and the encephalic structures obtained for determination of oxidative stress parameters. Results showed that methylphenidate administration increased the activities of superoxide dismutase and catalase, but did not alter the levels of reactive species, thiobarbituric acid reactive substances levels and sulfhydryl group in cerebellum of rats. In striatum and hippocampus, the methylphenidate-treated rats presented a decrease in the levels of reactive species and thiobarbituric acid reactive substances, but did not present changes in the sulfhydryl groups levels. In prefrontal cortex, methylphenidate promoted an increase in reactive species formation, SOD/CAT ratio, and increased the lipid peroxidation and protein damage. These findings suggest that the encephalic structures respond differently to methylphenidate treatment, at least, when administered chronically to young rats. Notably, the prefrontal cortex of juvenile rats showed greater sensitivity to oxidative effects promoted by methylphenidate in relation to other encephalic structures analyzed.

LRRK2 Controls an EndoA Phosphorylation Cycle in Synaptic Endocytosis

Neuron. Sep, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 22998870

LRRK2 is a kinase mutated in Parkinson's disease, but how the protein affects synaptic function remains enigmatic. We identified LRRK2 as a critical regulator of EndophilinA. Using genetic and biochemical studies involving Lrrk loss-of-function mutants and Parkinson-related LRRK2(G2019S) gain-of-kinase function, we show that LRRK2 affects synaptic endocytosis by phosphorylating EndoA at S75, a residue in the BAR domain. We show that LRRK2-mediated EndoA phosphorylation has profound effects on EndoA-dependent membrane tubulation and membrane association in vitro and in vivo and on synaptic vesicle endocytosis at Drosophila neuromuscular junctions in vivo. Our work uncovers a regulatory mechanism that indicates that reduced LRRK2 kinase activity facilitates EndoA membrane association, while increased kinase activity inhibits membrane association. Consequently, both too much and too little LRRK2-dependent EndoA phosphorylation impedes synaptic endocytosis, and we propose a model in which LRRK2 kinase activity is part of an EndoA phosphorylation cycle that facilitates efficient vesicle formation at synapses.

Construction and Assessment of Reaction Models Between F(1)F(0)-synthase and Organotin Compounds: Molecular Docking and Quantum Calculations

Journal of Biomolecular Structure & Dynamics. Oct, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23030507

Organotin compounds are the active components of some fungicides, which are potential inhibitors of the F(1)F(0)-ATP synthase. The studies about the reaction mechanism might indicate a pathway to understand how these compounds work in biological systems, however, has not been clarified so far. In this line, molecular modeling studies and density functional theory calculations were performed in order to understand the molecular behavior of those compounds when they interact with the active site of the enzyme. Our findings indicate that a strong interaction with His132 can favor a chemical reaction with organotin compounds due to π-π stacking interactions with aromatic rings of organotin compounds. Furthermore, dependence on molecule size is related to possibility of reaction with the amino acid residue His132. Thus, it can also be noticed, for organotin compounds, that substituents with four carbons work by blocking the subunit a, in view of the high energy transition found characterized by steric hindrance.

Identification of Staphylococcus Saprophyticus Isolated from Patients with Urinary Tract Infection Using a Simple Set of Biochemical Tests Correlating with 16S-23S Interspace Region Molecular Weight Patterns

Journal of Microbiological Methods. Oct, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23041266

The emergence of Staphylococcus spp. not only as human pathogens, but also as reservoirs of antibiotic resistance determinants, requires the development of methods for their rapid and reliable identification in medically important samples. The aim of this study was to compare three phenotypic methods for the identification of Staphylococcus spp. isolated from patients with urinary tract infection using the PCR of the 16S-23S interspace region generating molecular weight patterns (ITR-PCR) as reference. All 57 S. saprophyticus studied were correctly identified using only the novobiocin disk. A rate of agreement of 98.0% was obtained for the simplified battery of biochemical tests in relation to ITR-PCR, whereas the Vitek I system and novobiocin disk showed 81.2% and 89.1% agreement, respectively. No other novobiocin-resistant non-S. saprophyticus strain was identified. Thus, the novobiocin disk is a feasible alternative for the identification of S. saprophyticus in urine samples in laboratories with limited resources. ITR-PCR and the simplified battery of biochemical tests were more reliable than the commercial systems currently available. This study confirms that automated systems are still unable to correctly differentiate CoNS species and that simple, reliable and inexpensive methods can be used for routine identification.

Restrictive Guideline Reduces Platelet Count Thresholds for Transfusions in Very Low Birth Weight Preterm Infants

Vox Sanguinis. Oct, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23046429

Background and Objectives  Platelet transfusions are performed almost entirely according to expert experience. This study assessed the effectiveness of a restrictive guideline to reduce platelet transfusions in preterm infants. Methods  A retrospective cohort of preterm infants with a birth weight of <1500 g had been born in 2 periods. In Period 1, a transfusion was indicated for a platelet count of <50 000/ml in clinically stable neonates or <100 000/ml in bleeding or clinically unstable infants. In Period 2, the indications were restricted to <25 000/ml in clinically stable neonates, or <50 000/ml in newborns who were either on mechanical ventilation, subject to imminent invasive procedures, within 72 h following a seizure, or extremely premature and <7 days old. A count of <100 000/ml was indicated for bleeding or major surgery. Results  Periods 1 and 2 comprised 121 and 134 neonates, respectively. The rates of ventricular haemorrhage and intrahospital death were similar in both periods. The percentage of transfused infants, the odds of receiving a platelet transfusion, the mean platelet count before transfusion and the percentage of transfusions with a platelet count >50,000/ml were greater in Period 1. Among thrombocytopenic neonates, the percentage of transfused neonates and the number of transfusions were similar in both groups. Conclusion  The restrictive guideline for platelet transfusions reduced the platelet count thresholds for neonatal transfusions without increasing the rate of ventricular haemorrhage.

Hematological and Biochemical Findings in Patients with Dengue Fever: a Current Issue

Revista Brasileira De Hematologia E Hemoterapia. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23049396

Diversity of Bipolaris Species in Clinical Samples in the USA and Their Antifungal Susceptibility Profiles

Journal of Clinical Microbiology. Oct, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23052310

A set of 104 isolates from human clinical samples from the USA, morphologically compatible with Bipolaris, were morphologically and molecularly identified through the sequence analysis of the ITS region of the nuclear rDNA. The predominant species were B. spicifera (67.3%), followed by B. hawaiiensis (18.2%), B. cynodontis (8.6%), B. micropus (2.9%), B. australiensis (2%) and B. setariae (1%). Bipolaris cynodontis, B. micropus and B. setariae represent new records from clinical samples. The most common anatomical sites where isolates were recovered were the nasal region (30.7%), skin (19.2%), lungs (14.4%) and eyes (12.5%). The antifungal susceptibility of 5 species of Bipolaris to 9 drugs is provided. With the exception of fluconazole and flucytosine, the antifungals tested showed good activity.

Postsurgical Pyoderma Gangrenosum Complicating Reduction Mammaplasty

Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. Oct, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23052384

Reduction mammaplasty is one of the most common surgeries performed by plastic surgeons. It relieves back and neck pain and improves the aesthetic contour of the ptotic breast. Postsurgical pyoderma gangrenosum (PSPG) is an unusual inflammatory disorder leading to rapidly progressive skin necrosis that can occur after any surgical procedure. The skin lesions have the characteristic appearance of ulcers with a purple-colored border and erythematous halo. Clinically, the patient has a low fever and severe local pain. In the majority of cases this disease is misdiagnosed as severe infection leading to improper debridement, exacerbating the problem. The mainstay of therapy for PSPG is still nonoperative and focuses on immunosuppressive medications and local wound care, which allows healing in the majority of the cases. It is important for plastic surgeons and infectologists to be cognizant of this entity, as a delay in diagnosis and management can be life-threatening and lead to considerable tissue loss and disfigurement of the breast. The authors report a case of reduction mammaplasty complicated with PSPG and its treatment. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE V: This journal requires that authors assign a level of evidence to each article. For a full description of these Evidence-Based Medicine ratings, please refer to the Table of Contents or the online Instructions to Authors .

Medical Education Content Required for Kernicterus Risk Recognition

Iranian Journal of Pediatrics. Jun, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23056881

The objective of this study was to define the minimum academic content required for pediatricians to recognize the risk of kernicterus.

The Role of the Basal Ganglia in Motivated Behavior

Reviews in the Neurosciences. Oct, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23079510

Abstract The present paper reviews foundational and contemporary theories of motivated behaviors and the growing body of evidence that they require specific functional interactions within the basal ganglia. Such evidence suggests that unconditioned responses (UR), conditioned responses (CR), goal-directed actions and stimulus-response (S-R) habits are selected in the basal ganglia. Such selection depends on activation of striatal neurons by cortical and subcortical neurons encoding unconditioned stimuli (US), conditioned stimuli (CS), goals and neutral stimuli (S). These neurons project respectively to the medial nucleus accumbens (NAc) shell/olfactory tubercle, NAc core/lateral olfactory tubercle, dorsolateral striatum and dorsomedial striatum. The strength of these synapses is altered when the levels of extracellular dopamine in the basal ganglia undergo phasic increases or decreases, which signal outcomes that are, respectively, better or worse than expected. In addition, dopamine release in response to salient USs and to CSs with incentive salience increases the signal-to-noise ratio of corticostriatal neurotransmission, thus 'energizing' the performance of selected actions. Different actions can be selected in the striatum because the striatal neurons of the so-called direct and indirect pathways can respectively initiate and end actions through pallidum/nigral-thalamic projections to premotor and motor areas of the cortex. According to this view, the basal ganglia is thought to play a role in the action-selection processes needed for the expression of both declarative and procedural memories, but the memories of the contexts, predictive stimuli or neutral stimuli associated with free rewards or with an action's outcomes are stored elsewhere.

Full-sib Reciprocal Recurrent Selection in the Maize Populations Cimmyt and Piranão

Genetics and Molecular Research : GMR. 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23079833

We estimated the genetic gains of the 12th cycle of reciprocal recurrent selection for maize traits of agronomic interest. We used 23 ISSR molecular markers in an attempt to maximize genetic variability among and within populations based on selection of S(1) progenies. To this end, 138 full-sib families were evaluated in a randomized block design in two environments (the municipalities of Campos dos Goytacazes and Itaocara, in the State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), with replications within sets. Direct selection for grain yield was used for the selection of the families. To assess genetic diversity among and within populations, we examined plants produced from part of the S(1s) seeds from the parents that originated the 42 full-sib families that were selected from the agronomic traits. Direct selection for grain yield provided good gains for the traits evaluated, with estimated improvement of -0.87 days for days to flowering, 0.35 plants, 1.79 ears per plot, 0.58 g per 100-grain weight, 308.21 g ear weight per plot, and 261.83 kg/ha grain yield. Application of molecular markers at the stage of superior progeny selection led to increased genetic distance among populations, which is a very important factor for utilization of heterosis and providing greater longevity to the reciprocal recurrent selection program.

Effect of the Yellow Passion Fruit Peel Flour (Passiflora Edulis F. Flavicarpa Deg.) in Insulin Sensitivity in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus Patients

Nutrition Journal. Oct, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23088514

ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: A study with the yellow passion fruit peel flour showed positive action in blood glucose control as therapies' adjuvant in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Therefore, we evaluated its effect on insulin sensitivity since there is a quest for studies that focus at better understanding of insulin resistance aspects in diabetic patients. Furthermore its relationship with chronic complications can also give good prospects for alternative treatments. METHODS: A total of 43 type 2 diabetes volunteers (28 females and 15 males) ingested 30 g/day of the yellow passion fruit peel flour for two months. The levels of blood glucose and fasting insulin, HOMA index and glycated hemoglobin were measured for each patient before and after dietary supplementation. RESULTS: There was a significant difference in the fasting blood glucose values (P = 0.000) and glycated hemoglobin (P = 0.032) after supplementation. It was also seen a reduction in HOMA IR (P = 0.005) in the supplemented group, however it was not observed changes in insulin values for females. HOMA beta (P = 0.000) showed significant increase in its values for the studied group. CONCLUSIONS: The supplementation used decreased insulin resistance in type 2 diabetic patients, suggesting a positive action in blood glucose control as adjuvant therapy in conventional treatments.

Palpation- and Ultrasound-guided Brachial Plexus Blockade in Hispaniolan Amazon Parrots (Amazona Ventralis)

Veterinary Anaesthesia and Analgesia. Oct, 2012  |  Pubmed ID: 23107194

Objective  To compare palpation-guided with ultrasound-guided brachial plexus blockade in Hispaniolan Amazon parrots. Study design  Prospective randomized experimental trial. Animals  Eighteen adult Hispaniolan Amazon parrots (Amazona ventralis) weighing 252-295 g. Methods  After induction of anesthesia with isoflurane, parrots received an injection of lidocaine (2 mg kg(-1) ) in a total volume of 0.3 mL at the axillary region. The birds were randomly assigned to equal groups using either palpation or ultrasound as a guide for the brachial plexus block. Nerve evoked muscle potentials (NEMP) were used to monitor effectiveness of brachial plexus block. The palpation-guided group received the local anesthetic at the space between the pectoral muscle, triceps, and supracoracoideus aticimus muscle, at the insertion of the tendons of the caudal coracobrachial muscle, and the caudal scapulohumeral muscle. For the ultrasound-guided group, the brachial plexus and the adjacent vessels were located with B-mode ultrasonography using a 7-15 MHz linear probe. After location, an 8-5 MHz convex transducer was used to guide injections. General anesthesia was discontinued 20 minutes after lidocaine injection and the birds recovered in a padded cage. Results  Both techniques decreased the amplitude of NEMP. Statistically significant differences in NEMP amplitudes, were observed within the ultrasound-guided group at 5, 10, 15, and 20 minutes after injection and within the palpation-guided group at 10, 15, and 20 minutes after injection. There was no statistically significant difference between the two groups. No effect on motor function, muscle relaxation or wing droop was observed after brachial plexus block. Conclusions and clinical relevance  The onset of the brachial plexus block tended to be faster when ultrasonography was used. Brachial plexus injection can be performed in Hispaniolan Amazon parrots and nerve evoked muscle potentials were useful to monitor the effects on nerve conduction in this avian species. Neither technique produced an effective block at the doses of lidocaine used and further study is necessary to develop a useful block for surgical analgesia.

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