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Find video protocols related to scientific articles indexed in Pubmed.
Effect of copper oxide oxidation state on the polymer-based solar cell buffer layers.
ACS Appl Mater Interfaces
PUBLISHED: 11-19-2014
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Transporting buffer layers are important components of the polymer-based organic photovoltaic devices. In this study, we have investigated the effects of the oxidation state in copper oxide based buffer layer in conjunction to its role in device performance. We have shown that variation in the oxidation state affects the band alignment and built-in voltage of the device, therefore, leading to variation in device performance. Specifically, the fully oxidized copper oxide buffer layer has a valence band position at 5.12 eV, much closer to the highest occupied molecular orbital of Poly(3-hexylthiophene-2,5-diyl) (P3HT) (~5.2 eV), giving a best fill factor and efficiency at 57% and 4.06%, respectively. Lastly, we also demonstrate significant enhancement in device stability, with power conversion efficiency maintained at 75% of the original value even after 40 days, and propose a strategy in recovering the device performance based on the observed property of the oxide buffer layer.
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Phenomapping for Novel Classification of Heart Failure with Preserved Ejection Fraction.
Circulation
PUBLISHED: 11-16-2014
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-Heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) is a heterogeneous clinical syndrome in need of improved phenotypic classification. We sought to evaluate whether unbiased clustering analysis using dense phenotypic data ("phenomapping") could identify phenotypically distinct HFpEF categories.
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FGFR1 mediates recombinant thrombomodulin domain-induced angiogenesis.
Cardiovasc. Res.
PUBLISHED: 11-10-2014
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The recombinant epidermal growth factor-like domain plus the serine/threonine-rich domain of thrombomodulin (rTMD23) promotes angiogenesis and accelerates the generation of activated protein C (APC), which facilitates angiogenesis. The aim of this study was to elucidate the molecular mechanisms underlying the angiogenic activity of rTMD23.
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Photodegradation of Veterinary Ionophore Antibiotics under UV and Solar Irradiation.
Environ. Sci. Technol.
PUBLISHED: 11-10-2014
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The veterinary ionophore antibiotics (IPAs) are extensively used as coccidiostats and growth promoters and are released to the environment via land application of animal waste. Due to their propensity to be transported with runoff, IPAs likely end up in surface waters where they are subject to photodegradation. This study is among the first to investigate the photodegradation of three commonly used IPAs, monensin (MON), salinomycin (SAL) and narasin (NAR), under UV and solar irradiation. Results showed that MON was persistent in a deionized (DI) water matrix when exposed to UV and sunlight, whereas SAL and NAR could undergo direct photolysis with a high quantum yield. Water components including nitrate and dissolved organic matter had a great impact on the photodegradation of IPAs. A pseudosteady state kinetic model was successfully applied to predict IPAs' photodegradation rates in real water matrices. Applying LC/MS/MS, multiple photolytic transformation products of IPAs were observed and their structures were proposed. The direct photolysis of SAL and NAR occurred via cleavage on the ketone moiety and self-sensitized photolysis. With the presence of nitrate, MON was primarily degraded by hydroxyl radicals, whereas SAL showed reactivity toward both hydroxyl and nitrogen-dioxide radicals. Additionally, toxicity tests showed that photodegradation of SAL eliminated its antibiotic properties against Bacillus subtilis.
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Inhibition and Biotransformation Potential of Veterinary Ionophore Antibiotics under Different Redox Conditions.
Environ. Sci. Technol.
PUBLISHED: 10-31-2014
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Veterinary ionophore antibiotics (IPAs) are polyether compounds used extensively in the livestock industry to promote animal growth and prevent coccidia infection. However, the environmental fate and impact of IPAs are not fully understood. In this study, the inhibition and biotransformation potential of the most commonly used IPAs, monensin (MON) and salinomycin (SAL), were investigated under well-defined aerobic, nitrate-reducing, fermentative/sulfate-reducing, and fermentative/methanogenic conditions. Batch assays were conducted with mixed cultures developed from poultry litter (PL), PL-fertilized soil, and municipal anaerobic sludge. Significant transformation of MON and SAL was observed in aerobic, low-buffer capacity culture series as a result of abiotic acid-catalyzed IPAs hydrolysis induced by nitrification. Biotransformation of IPAs was the main transformation process in aerobic, high-buffer capacity culture series. MON persisted under fermentative/sulfate-reducing conditions, whereas SAL was transformed by fermentative bacteria. Both MON and SAL were stable under nitrate-reducing and methanogenic conditions. At IPAs concentrations up to 1 mg/L, MON inhibited only methanogenesis, whereas SAL did not impact any of the biological processes investigated in this study. Multiple, new primary IPA biotransformation products were observed on LC/MS, and their molecular structures were tentatively identified by analyzing LC/MS/MS fragmentation patterns. Overall, MON and SAL exhibited different inhibition and biotransformation patterns at each redox condition tested, which could greatly influence their fate and impact upon their release into the environment as a result of agricultural activities.
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Impact of constitution of the terthiophene-vinylene conjugated side chain on the optical and photovoltaic properties of two-dimensional polythiophenes.
Phys Chem Chem Phys
PUBLISHED: 10-22-2014
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The effects of the spatial arrangement of the conjugated side chains of two-dimensional polymers on their optical, electrochemical, molecular-packing, and photovoltaic characteristics were investigated. Accordingly, novel polythiophenes with horizontally () and vertically () grafted terthiophene-vinylene (TTV) conjugated side chains were synthesized that display two and one UV-vis peaks, respectively; the difference is due to the different constitutions of the conjugated side-chains. Because the spatial arrangement affects the molecular self-assembly, shows stronger crystallinity than , which enhances the charge mobility in devices. Moreover, has a lower HOMO energy level (-5.49 eV) than (-5.40 eV). Bulk heterojunction solar cells fabricated from /PC71BM and /PC71BM exhibit power conversion efficiencies of 4.75% and 4.00%, respectively, and Voc values of 800 and 730 mV, respectively, under AM1.5G illumination (100 mW cm(-2)). Thus, the architecture of the TTV conjugated side chains affects the optical, electrochemical, and photovoltaic properties; this study provides more ideas for improving 2-D conjugated polymers for semiconductor devices.
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Prospective Memory in Subjective Cognitive Decline: A Preliminary Study on the Role of Early Cognitive Marker in Dementia.
Alzheimer Dis Assoc Disord
PUBLISHED: 09-01-2014
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Accumulating evidence shows that subjective cognitive decline (SCD) without impairment on conventional neuropsychological tests may indicate increased risk for Alzheimer disease. Previous studies of mild cognitive impairment have demonstrated the potential role of prospective memory (PM) in the early detection of cognitive decline. We thus aimed to investigate the performance of people with SCD on PM tasks relative to their healthy controls (HCs). Forty-one participants with SCD and demographically matched HCs received regular cognitive testing as well as 2 single-trial naturalistic time-based and event-based PM tasks. Statistical analyses showed that the individuals with SCD performed worse on the time-based PM task, especially on the prospective component, when compared with their HCs. Our findings suggest that PM, especially the time-based one on the prospective component, may be an early cognitive marker of dementia. This implies an underlying difficulty among subjects with SCD in self-initiation that exacerbates their memory difficulties. Further investigation on a large scale is needed.
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Exercise Preconditioning Protects against Spinal Cord Injury in Rats by Upregulating Neuronal and Astroglial Heat Shock Protein 72.
Int J Mol Sci
PUBLISHED: 08-04-2014
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The heat shock protein 72 (HSP 72) is a universal marker of stress protein whose expression can be induced by physical exercise. Here we report that, in a localized model of spinal cord injury (SCI), exercised rats (given pre-SCI exercise) had significantly higher levels of neuronal and astroglial HSP 72, a lower functional deficit, fewer spinal cord contusions, and fewer apoptotic cells than did non-exercised rats. pSUPER plasmid expressing HSP 72 small interfering RNA (SiRNA-HSP 72) was injected into the injured spinal cords. In addition to reducing neuronal and astroglial HSP 72, the (SiRNA-HSP 72) significantly attenuated the beneficial effects of exercise preconditioning in reducing functional deficits as well as spinal cord contusion and apoptosis. Because exercise preconditioning induces increased neuronal and astroglial levels of HSP 72 in the gray matter of normal spinal cord tissue, exercise preconditioning promoted functional recovery in rats after SCI by upregulating neuronal and astroglial HSP 72 in the gray matter of the injured spinal cord. We reveal an important function of neuronal and astroglial HSP 72 in protecting neuronal and astroglial apoptosis in the injured spinal cord. We conclude that HSP 72-mediated exercise preconditioning is a promising strategy for facilitating functional recovery from SCI.
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Effects of size and surface of zinc oxide and aluminum-doped zinc oxide nanoparticles on cell viability inferred by proteomic analyses.
Int J Nanomedicine
PUBLISHED: 08-02-2014
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Although the health effects of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnONPs) on the respiratory system have been reported, the fate, potential toxicity, and mechanisms in biological cells of these particles, as related to particle size and surface characteristics, have not been well elucidated. To determine the physicochemical properties of ZnONPs that govern cytotoxicity, we investigated the effects of size, electronic properties, zinc concentration, and pH on cell viability using human alveolar-basal epithelial A549 cells as a model. We observed that a 2-hour or longer exposure to ZnONPs induced changes in cell viability. The alteration in cell viability was associated with the zeta potentials and pH values of the ZnONPs. Proteomic profiling of A549 exposed to ZnONPs for 2 and 4 hours was used to determine the biological mechanisms of ZnONP toxicity. p53-pathway activation was the core mechanism regulating cell viability in response to particle size. Activation of the Wnt and TGF? signaling pathways was also important in the cellular response to ZnONPs of different sizes. The cadherin and Wnt signaling pathways were important cellular mechanisms triggered by surface differences. These results suggested that the size and surface characteristics of ZnONPs might play an important role in their observed cytotoxicity. This approach facilitates the design of more comprehensive systems for the evaluation of nanoparticles.
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N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) formation potential of amine-based water treatment polymers: Effects of in situ chloramination, breakpoint chlorination, and pre-oxidation.
J. Hazard. Mater.
PUBLISHED: 07-30-2014
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Recent studies show that cationic amine-based water treatment polymers may be important precursors that contribute to formation of the probable human carcinogen N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) during water treatment and disinfection. To better understand how water treatment parameters affect NDMA formation from the polymers, the effects of in situ chloramination, breakpoint chlorination, and pre-oxidation on the NDMA formation from the polymers were investigated. NDMA formation potential (NDMA-FP) as well as dimethylamine (DMA) residual concentration were measured from poly(epichlorohydrin dimethylamine) (polyamine) and poly(diallyldimethylammonium chloride) (polyDADMAC) solutions upon reactions with oxidants including free chlorine, chlorine dioxide, ozone, and monochloramine under different treatment conditions. The results supported that dichloramine (NHCl2) formation was the critical factor affecting NDMA formation from the polymers during in situ chloramination. The highest NDMA formation from the polymers occurred near the breakpoint of chlorination. Polymer chain breakdown and transformation of the released DMA and other intermediates were important factors affecting NDMA formation from the polymers in pre-oxidation followed by post-chloramination. Pre-oxidation generally reduced NDMA-FP of the polymers; however, the treatments involving pre-ozonation increased polyDADMAC's NDMA-FP and DMA release. The strategies for reducing NDMA formation from the polymers may include the avoidance of the conditions favorable to NHCl2 formation and the avoidance of polymer exposure to strong oxidants such as ozone.
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0061?Epidemiological study of lung inflammation and oxidative damage in indium tin oxide workers.
Occup Environ Med
PUBLISHED: 07-15-2014
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Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) is widely used in many kinds of touch panels nowadays. Workers could expose to ITO particles from sintering granules, splashing, pulverisation, cutting, and grinding processes. This study aimed to assess the relationship between ITO exposure and lung inflammation and oxidative damage in ITO workers.
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Neonatal vaccination with plasmid DNA encoding Cyn d 1 effectively prevents allergic responses in mice.
Am J Rhinol Allergy
PUBLISHED: 07-02-2014
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Allergic rhinitis is one of the most common atopic disorders in children. There is no available method to prevent airway sensitization in newborns except allergen avoidance. Recombinant DNA plasmids encoding allergens have been proven to activate Th1 but attenuate Th2-deviated allergic responses in adult animal studies. However, their preventive effects are not presumptive in neonates because of their immature immune function. The aim of this study was to examine the potential preventive effect of a DNA vaccine encoding grass pollen allergen Cyn d 1 on allergic reaction to grass pollen in neonatal mice.
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High job strain is associated with inflammatory markers of disease in young long-haul bus drivers.
J Occup Health Psychol
PUBLISHED: 05-05-2014
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Atherosclerosis is an inflammatory disease. The study was aimed to investigate the association between job strain and inflammation markers and to examine factors contributing to high strain. The long-haul bus drivers (n = 825) were recruited from a Taiwanese transportation company. The psychosocial work environment was measured by a validated job content questionnaire (JCQ). Plasma high sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) and homocysteine (Hcy) were analyzed as inflammation markers. Job strain effects and its interaction with age were analyzed by logistic regression. Explained variance (Nagelkerke R square) was applied to select important stressors. The crude and adjusted odds ratio (OR) for the effect of high strain on high hs-CRP and Hcy were not significant. However, there was significant interaction between job strain and age (p = .014). The significantly increased risk of high strain on high hs-CRP was found among drivers younger than 35 years old (OR = 2.71), but not in driver groups age 35 to 49 and older than 50. The contributing factors to high strain were varied among the 3 age groups. The 3 stressors found for young drivers were having rest time less than 8 hours between 2 shifts, being physically inactive during leisure time, and frequent driving more than 12 hours a day. Job strain interacted with age influenced hs-CRP levels. The risk of inflammatory disease markers only increased in high strained group of young drivers. Appropriate work shift systems should be implemented to increase off-duty time, reduce sleep restrictions, and increase physical activity during leisure time.
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Meta-analysis based variable selection for gene expression data.
Biometrics
PUBLISHED: 05-01-2014
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Recent advance in biotechnology and its wide applications have led to the generation of many high-dimensional gene expression data sets that can be used to address similar biological questions. Meta-analysis plays an important role in summarizing and synthesizing scientific evidence from multiple studies. When the dimensions of datasets are high, it is desirable to incorporate variable selection into meta-analysis to improve model interpretation and prediction. According to our knowledge, all existing methods conduct variable selection with meta-analyzed data in an "all-in-or-all-out" fashion, that is, a gene is either selected in all of studies or not selected in any study. However, due to data heterogeneity commonly exist in meta-analyzed data, including choices of biospecimens, study population, and measurement sensitivity, it is possible that a gene is important in some studies while unimportant in others. In this article, we propose a novel method called meta-lasso for variable selection with high-dimensional meta-analyzed data. Through a hierarchical decomposition on regression coefficients, our method not only borrows strength across multiple data sets to boost the power to identify important genes, but also keeps the selection flexibility among data sets to take into account data heterogeneity. We show that our method possesses the gene selection consistency, that is, when sample size of each data set is large, with high probability, our method can identify all important genes and remove all unimportant genes. Simulation studies demonstrate a good performance of our method. We applied our meta-lasso method to a meta-analysis of five cardiovascular studies. The analysis results are clinically meaningful.
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The role of betel-quid chewing in smoking cessation among workers in Taiwan.
BMC Public Health
PUBLISHED: 03-26-2014
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Current smokers exhibit a higher rate of betel-quid chewing than non-smokers. However, little is known regarding the extent to which betel-quid chewing may affect attempts to quit smoking and smoking cessation. The aim of the present study is to examine the association between betel-quid chewing and patterns of quitting smoking. Specifically, we explore whether betel-quid chewing is associated with (1) current smokers who have never attempted to quit versus those who have attempted to quit and have failed, those who are in the process of quitting, and successful cessation smokers, and (2) current smokers who have attempted to quit and have failed versus those who have successfully quit smoking.
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Vulnerable blood in high risk vascular patients: study design and methods.
Contemp Clin Trials
PUBLISHED: 03-25-2014
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Basic research suggests that rapid increases in circulating inflammatory and hemostatic blood markers may trigger or indicate impending plaque rupture and coronary thrombosis, resulting in acute ischemic heart disease (IHD) events. However, these associations are not established in humans.
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Emergency department visits for food allergy in Taiwan: a retrospective study.
Pediatr Neonatol
PUBLISHED: 03-17-2014
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Little is known about the characteristics of patients who visit the emergency department (ED) due to food allergy in Taiwan. This study aims to assess the triggers, clinical presentations, and management of patients presenting to a tertiary ED for food allergy.
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Intra-articular transplantation of porcine adipose-derived stem cells for the treatment of canine osteoarthritis: A pilot study.
World J Transplant
PUBLISHED: 03-16-2014
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To test whether intra-articular injection of porcine adipose-derived stem cells (ADSCs) can treat canine osteoarthritis (OA).
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Antimicrobial resistance to cefotaxime and ertapenem in Enterobacteriaceae: the effects of altering clinical breakpoints.
J Infect Dev Ctries
PUBLISHED: 03-13-2014
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The Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI) updated its antimicrobial susceptibility testing interpretation criteria for Enterobacteriaceae. This study assessed the effects of clinical breakpoint changes in the CLSI 2009 to 2012 guidelines on antibiotic susceptibility testing reports.
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Effects of a 12-Week Pilates Course on Lower Limb Muscle Strength and Trunk Flexibility in Women Living in the Community.
Health Care Women Int
PUBLISHED: 03-12-2014
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Researchers in Taiwan studying regular adult physical activity found that among married women aged 26 to 55 years, 56% participated in physical activity, and that the convenience and safety of the activity were major factors contributing to their willingness to exercise. Muscle weakness and poor trunk flexibility are closely related to some chronic diseases in women. In this cross-sectional survey, we used the Polestar Pilates™  method to explore the effects of a 12-week Pilates course on the physical fitness of women living in the community. Fifty-three members of the experimental group (mean age: 42.30±9.97) and 43 of the control group (mean age: 41.23±9.83) were included. We confirm that a convenient Pilates exercise intervention can significantly improve muscle strength and trunk flexibility in women. Our findings serve as an important reference for health authorities in Taiwan and provide higher awareness of women's health and physical fitness, which can help prevent chronic and cardiovascular diseases.
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Inflammatory expression profiles in monocyte-to-macrophage differentiation in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus and relationship with atherosclerosis.
Arthritis Res. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 03-07-2014
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Our objectives were to examine mononuclear cell gene expression profiles in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and healthy controls and to compare subsets with and without atherosclerosis to determine which genes' expression is related to atherosclerosis in SLE.
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A gene signature for a long-term survivor of an atypical teratoid/rhabdoid tumor.
Cancer Genet
PUBLISHED: 03-03-2014
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Atypical teratoid/rhabdoid tumors (AT/RTs) are aggressive brain tumors that are commonly associated with a dismal prognosis. However, there have been isolated reports of long-term survival that was not necessarily correlated with other prognostic factors such as age, clinical stage, or extent of surgical resection. Here, we report the case of a 6-year-old boy with AT/RT who remained disease-free for 8 years after undergoing subtotal surgical resection followed only by radiation therapy. On recurrence, the tumor rapidly progressed, leading to the patient's death a short time later. To further characterize this case and learn more about the tumor biology of long-term survivors, we compared the gene expression (GE) profiles from representative samples obtained from primary, recurrent, and progressive disease tumors of the above-mentioned patient along with a cohort of primary untreated AT/RT samples using cDNA microarrays. Global GE analysis and unsupervised hierarchical clustering showed the three events clustered together and distinctly apart from the rest of the samples. This indicates a GE background that is maintained throughout the course of the disease. This unique case suggests that there may be specific clinical characteristics associated with distinctive molecular subtypes of AT/RT. The identification and characterization of AT/RT subtypes could lead to advances in both prognosis and treatment of these tumors.
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Body Mass Index and Functional Mobility Outcome Following Early Rehabilitation after a Total Knee Replacement: A Retrospective Study in Taiwan.
Arthritis Care Res (Hoboken)
PUBLISHED: 03-02-2014
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Objective. Obesity is associated with an increased risk of osteoarthritis (OA), and the incidence of obese patients requiring a total knee replacement (TKR) has increased in recent years. A high body-mass index (BMI) may influence post-TKR rehabilitation outcomes. We investigated the effects of obesity on functional mobility outcomes following post-TKR rehabilitation in Asian patients whose BMIs were not as great as those reported in similar studies performed in non-Asian countries. Methods. A total of 113 patients were divided into normal-weight (n = 23), overweight (n = 32), class-I obese (n = 31); and class-II-III obese (n = 27) patient groups, and retrospectively followed for 6 months after undergoing TKR followed by 2 months of active rehabilitation. Outcome measures were recorded at baseline and at 2- and 6-month follow-up assessments, which included the Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index and the functional reach (FR), single-leg stance (SLS), 10-m walk, timed up-and-go, chair rise, and stair climbing tests. Results. A 4 × 3 (group × time) repeated measures analysis of variance showed that significant improvements occurred in all of the outcome measures for all of the BMI groups at the 2- and 6-month follow-up assessments (P < 0.05 for all). No significant intergroup difference was found in all mobility measures at 2- and 6-month follow-up assessments, except those in the FR and SLS were statistically significant (P < 0.05). Conclusion. The class-II-III obese patients benefited from early post-TKR outpatient rehabilitation, responding as well as patients with lower BMIs. © 2014 American College of Rheumatology.
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Biodegradation of veterinary ionophore antibiotics in broiler litter and soil microcosms.
Environ. Sci. Technol.
PUBLISHED: 02-13-2014
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Ionophore antibiotics (IPAs) are polyether compounds used in broiler feed to promote growth and control coccidiosis. Most of the ingested IPAs are excreted into broiler litter (BL), a mixture of excreta and bedding material. BL is considered a major source of IPAs released into the environment as BL is commonly used to fertilize agricultural fields. This study investigated IPA biodegradation in BL and soil microcosms, as a process affecting the fate of IPAs in the environment. The study focused on the most widely used IPAs, monensin (MON), salinomycin (SAL), and narasin (NAR). MON was stable in BL microcosms at 24-72% water content (water/wet litter, w/w) and 35-60 °C, whereas SAL and NAR degraded under certain conditions. Factor analysis was conducted to delineate the interaction of water and temperature on SAL and NAR degradation in the BL. A major transformation product of SAL and NAR was identified. Abiotic reaction(s) were primarily responsible for the degradation of MON and SAL in nonfertilized soil microcosms, whereas biodegradation contributed significantly in BL-fertilized soil microcosms. SAL biotransformation in soil microcosms yielded the same product as in the BL microcosms. A new primary biotransformation product of MON was identified in soil microcosms. A field study showed that MON and SAL were stable during BL stacking, whereas MON degraded after BL was applied to grassland. The biotransformation product of MON was also detected in the top soil layer where BL was applied.
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Effects of combined UV and chlorine treatment on the formation of trichloronitromethane from amine precursors.
Environ. Sci. Technol.
PUBLISHED: 02-10-2014
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The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of combined low-pressure ultraviolet (LPUV) irradiation and free chlorination on the formation of trichloronitromethane (TCNM) byproduct from amine precursors, including a commonly used polyamine coagulant aid (poly(epichlorohydrin dimethylamine)) and simple alkylamines dimethylamine (DMA) and methylamine (MA). Results showed that TCNM formation can increase up to 15 fold by combined UV/chlorine under disinfection to advanced oxidation conditions. The enhancement effect is influenced by UV irradiance, chlorine dose, and water pH. Extended reaction time leads to the decay of TCNM by direct photolysis. The combined UV/chlorine conditions significantly promoted degradation of polyamine to generate intermediates, including DMA and MA, which are better TCNM precursors than polyamine, and also facilitated transformation of these amine precursors to TCNM. Under combined UV/chlorine, polyamine degradation was likely promoted by radical oxidation, photodecay of chlorinated polyamine, and chlorine oxidation/substitution. Promoted TCNM formation from primary amine MA was primarily due to radicals' involvement. Promoted TCNM formation from secondary amine DMA likely involved a combination of radical oxidation, photoenhanced chlorination reactions, and other unknown mechanisms. Insights obtained in this study are useful for reducing TCNM formation during water treatment when both UV and chlorine will be encountered.
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Sneezing and allergic dermatitis were increased in engineered nanomaterial handling workers.
Ind Health
PUBLISHED: 02-04-2014
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The aim of this study was to survey the work-relatedness of symptoms and diseases among engineered nanomaterials handling workers by questionnaire. A total of 258 exposed workers and 200 comparison workers were recruited from 14 nanomaterials handling factories in Taiwan. In addition to current disease status (prevalence), we classified the diseases worsened by employment (worsened by work). The control banding nanotool risk level matrix was adopted to categorize the severity and probability of nanomaterial exposure. The work-relatedness of symptoms was also self-reported in the questionnaire. The only symptom identified as significantly work-related was sneezing (5.88% in risk level 2 and 7.91% in risk level 1 vs. 2.00% in controls, p=0.04). The prevalences of work-related dry cough (p=0.06) and productive cough (p=0.09) in nanomaterials handling workers were also higher than those in controls. The only disease significantly worsened by work was allergic dermatitis (4.20% in risk level 2, 0% in risk level 1 vs. 0.50% in control, p=0.01). The incidence of angina in nanoworkers was also higher than in controls (p=0.06). In addition to allergic diseases, cardiopulmonary symptoms such as cough and angina may be used as screening tools for medical surveillance of people handling engineered nanomaterials.
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Gene-gene interactions in renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system contributes to end-stage renal disease susceptibility in a Han Chinese population.
ScientificWorldJournal
PUBLISHED: 01-27-2014
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In this study, we investigated whether RAAS gene single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and their interactions were associated with end-stage renal stage (ESRD).
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The clinical utility of informants' appraisals on prospective and retrospective memory in patients with early Alzheimer's disease.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Increasing studies suggest the importance of including prospective memory measures in clinical evaluation of dementia due to its sensitivity and functional relevance. The Prospective and Retrospective Memory Questionnaire (PRQM) is originally a self-rated memory inventory that offers a direct comparison between prospective and episodic memory. However, the informant's report has been recognized as a more valid source of cognitive complaints. We thus aimed to examine the validity of the informant-rated form of the PRMQ in assessing memory function of the patients and in detecting individuals with early dementia. The informants of 140 neurological outpatients with memory complaints completed the Taiwan version of the PRMQ. Tests of prospective memory, short-term memory, and general cognitive ability were also administered to non-demented participants and patients with early stages of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Results showed significant relationships between the PRMQ ratings and objective cognitive measures, and showed that higher ratings on the PRMQ were associated with increasing odds of greater dementia severity. Receiver operative characteristic (ROC) curves showed an adequate ability of the PRMQ to identify patients with dementia (93% sensitivity and 84% specificity). Hierarchical regression revealed that the PRMQ has additional explanatory power for dementia status after controlling for age, education and objective memory test results, and that the prospective memory subscale owns predictive value for dementia beyond the retrospective memory subscale. The present study demonstrated the external validity and diagnostic value of informants' evaluation of their respective patients' prospective and retrospective memory functioning, and highlighted the important role of prospective memory in early dementia detection. The proxy-version of the PRMQ is a useful tool that captures prospective and episodic memory problems in patients with early AD, in combination with standardized cognitive testing.
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Abbott RealTime HBV assay is more sensitive in detection of low viral load and little impacted by drug resistant mutation in chronic hepatitis B patients under nucleot(s)ide analogues therapy.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Selection of drug-resistant strains may lead to failure of HBV antiviral therapy. There is little information whether there is detection difference in drug resistant mutations between different viral load assays of HBV.
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A nation-wide evidence-based data analysis of repeated suicide attempts.
Crisis
PUBLISHED: 12-18-2013
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Taiwan is a high-risk area for suicide. Repeated suicide attempts are an important factor of suicide mortality. Yet there has been little research on the factors associated with repeated suicidal behavior in Taiwan.
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Six-month follow-up study of health markers of nanomaterials among workers handling engineered nanomaterials.
Nanotoxicology
PUBLISHED: 12-03-2013
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Abstract The aim of this study was to identify the health hazards and possible exposure surveillance markers of workers exposed to nanoparticles during manufacturing and application in comparison to a group of unexposed workers. For this longitudinal study, we recruited 158 nanomaterial-handling workers and 104 non-exposed workers from 14 manufacturing plants in Taiwan (baseline). Among them, 124 nanomaterial-handling workers and 77 unexposed workers were monitored 6 months later. We investigated pulmonary and cardiovascular disease markers, inflammation and oxidative stress markers, antioxidant enzymes and genotoxicity markers. Antioxidant enzymes (superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase) and cardiovascular markers (vascular cell adhesion molecule, paraoxonase) were significantly associated with nanomaterial-handling during the 6-month follow-up period. In addition, the small airway damage marker (Clara cell protein 16) and lung function test parameters were also significantly associated with handling nanomaterials. The study markers and lung function tests are possible markers that could be useful for surveillance of nanomaterial-handling workers.
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Did the fire ant supergene evolve selfishly or socially?
Bioessays
PUBLISHED: 11-25-2013
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The genetic basis for animal social organization is poorly understood. Fire ants provide one of the rare cases where variation in social organization has been demonstrated to be under genetic control, which amazingly, segregates as a single Mendelian locus. A recent genetic, genomic, and cytological analysis revealed that this locus actually consists of over 600 genes locked together in a supergene that possesses many characteristics of sex chromosomes. The fire ant social supergene also behaves selfishly, and an interesting evolutionary question is whether the genes incorporated first into the social supergene were those for social adaptation, selfish genetic drive, or something else. In depth, functional molecular genetic analysis in fire ants and comparative genomics in other closely related socially polymorphic species will be required to resolve this question. Editors suggested further reading in BioEssays Social supergenes of superorganisms: Do supergenes play important roles in social evolution? Abstract.
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Metformin induces cytotoxicity by down-regulating thymidine phosphorylase and excision repair cross-complementation 1 expression in non-small cell lung cancer cells.
Basic Clin. Pharmacol. Toxicol.
PUBLISHED: 11-13-2013
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Metformin is an antidiabetic drug recently shown to inhibit cancer cell proliferation and growth, although the involved molecular mechanisms have not been elucidated. In many cancer cells, high expression of thymidine phosphorylase (TP) and Excision repair cross-complementation 1 (ERCC1) is associated with poor prognosis. We used A549 and H1975 human non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines to investigate the role of TP and ERCC1 expression in metformin-induced cytotoxicity. Metformin treatment decreased cellular TP and ERCC1 protein and mRNA levels by down-regulating phosphorylated MEK1/2-ERK1/2 protein levels in a dose- and time-dependent manner. The enforced expression of the constitutively active MEK1 (MEK1-CA) vectors significantly restored cellular TP and ERCC1 protein levels and cell viability. Specific inhibition of TP and ERCC1 expression by siRNA enhanced the metformin-induced cytotoxicity and growth inhibition. Arachidin-1, an antioxidant stilbenoid, further decreased TP and ERCC1 expression and augmented metformins cytotoxic effect, which was abrogated in lung cancer cells transfected with MEK1/2-CA expression vector. In conclusion, metformin induces cytotoxicity by down-regulating TP and ERCC1 expression in NSCLC cells.
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Stem-cell therapy for erectile dysfunction.
Expert Opin Biol Ther
PUBLISHED: 10-03-2013
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Stem cells (SCs) have been investigated for the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED).
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Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Without c-Myc Reduce Airway Responsiveness and Allergic Reaction in Sensitized Mice.
Transplantation
PUBLISHED: 08-31-2013
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Allergic disorders have increased substantially in recent years. Asthma is characterized by airway damage and remodeling. Reprogramming induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from adult somatic cells transfected by Oct-4/Sox-2/Klf-4, but not c-Myc, has shown the potential of embryonic-like cells. These cells have potential for multilineage differentiation and provide a resource for stem cell-based utility. However, the therapeutic potential of iPSCs without c-Myc (iPSC-w/o-c-Myc) in allergic diseases and airway hyperresponsiveness has not been investigated. The aim of this study was to evaluate the therapeutic effect of iPSC-w/o-c-Myc transplantation in a murine asthma model.
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Determinants of daytime sleepiness in first-year nursing students: A questionnaire survey.
Nurse Educ Today
PUBLISHED: 08-06-2013
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Daytime sleepiness may affect student learning achievement. Research studies have found that daytime sleepiness is common in university students; however, information regarding the determinants of daytime sleepiness in this population is still lacking.
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Anti-apoptotic and pro-survival effect of protocatechuic acid on hypertensive hearts.
Chem. Biol. Interact.
PUBLISHED: 07-27-2013
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Cardiac apoptosis was found in hearts from hypertensive animals, therefore in this study we aimed to evaluate the anti-apoptotic and pro-survival effects of protocatechuic acid (PCA) on hypertensive hearts. At first we found that, sedentary group (SHR)-PCA groups decreased TUNEL-positive apoptotic cells than SHR group alone. Protein levels of Fas ligand, Fas death receptor, Fas-associated death domain (FADD), Bid, t-Bid, Bax, cytochrome c, activated caspase-8, activated caspase 9 and activated caspase-3 were decreased in SHR-PCA group compared with SHR group. Moreover, SHR-PCA groups increased pro-survival pathway proteins like IGF1, pIGF1R, pPI3K, p-Akt, Bcl-xL, and Bcl-2 than SHR and sedentary normotensive group (WKY). All these finding suggest us that, Protocatechuic acid prevented hypertension-enhanced cardiac Fas-dependent and mitochondria-dependent apoptotic pathways and enhanced cardiac pro-survival pathway in rat models.
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Mechanism and control of the structural evolution of a polymer solar cell from a bulk heterojunction to a thermally unstable hierarchical structure.
Nanoscale
PUBLISHED: 07-12-2013
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We simultaneously employed grazing incidence small-angle and wide-angle X-ray scattering (GISAXS and GIWAXS) techniques to quantitatively study the structural evolution and kinetic behavior of poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) crystallization, [6,6]-phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) aggregation and amorphous P3HT/PCBM domains from a bulk heterojunction (BHJ) to a thermally unstable structure. The independent phase separation regimes on the nanoscale (?10 nm), mesoscale (?100 nm) and macroscale (??m) are revealed for the first time. Bis-PCBM molecules as inhibitors incorporated into the P3HT/PCBM blend films were adopted as a case study of a control strategy for improving the thermal stability of P3HT/PCBM solar cell. The detailed information on the formation, growth, transformation and mutual interaction between different phases during the hierarchical structural evolution of P3HT/PCBM:xbis-PCBM (x = 8-100%) blend films are presented herein. This systematic study proposes the mechanisms of thermal instability for a polymer/fullerene-based solar cell. We demonstrate a new fundamental concept that the structural evolution and thermal stability of mesoscale amorphous P3HT/PCBM domains during heating are the origin of controlling thermal instability rather than those of nanoscale thermally-stable BHJ structures. It leads to a low-cost and easy-fabrication control strategy for effectively tailoring the hierarchical morphology against thermal instability from molecular to macro scales. The optimum treatment achieving high thermal stability, control of mesoscale domains, can be effectively designed. It is independent of the original BHJ nanostructure design of a polymer/fullerene-based solar cell with high performance. It advances the general knowledge on the thermal instability directly arising from the nanoscale structure.
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Year-long evaluation on the occurrence and fate of pharmaceuticals, personal care products, and endocrine disrupting chemicals in an urban drinking water treatment plant.
Water Res.
PUBLISHED: 06-28-2013
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The occurrence and removal of thirty representative pharmaceutical and personal care products (PPCPs) and endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in an urban drinking water treatment plant (DWTP) were investigated for a period of one year to evaluate current systems treatment efficacy and assess occurrence of PPCPs and EDCs in finished drinking water. Results showed that the average total PPCPs and EDCs concentration in the surface water source was around 360 ng/L (median concentration = 340 ng/L) with 57% coefficient of variation (CV). The median concentrations of most of the individual PPCPs and EDCs in the surface water were below 15 ng/L except for N,N-diethyltoluamide (DEET) and nonylphenol, which were at 122 and 83 ng/L, respectively. The compounds DEET, nonylphenol, ibuprofen, triclosan, atrazine, tris(2-chloroethyl)-phosphate (TCEP), bisphenol-A, and caffeine (in the order of decreasing median concentration) were among twenty compounds detected at least once in the surface water, while all of the above detected compounds, except two, were also detected in the finished drinking water. The average total PPCPs and EDCs concentration in the finished drinking water was around 98 ng/L (median concentration = 96 ng/L) with 66% CV. The median concentrations of most detected PPCPs and EDCs in drinking water were below 5 ng/L except for DEET and nonylphenol, which were at 12 and 20 ng/L, respectively. There was a strong correlation (r = 0.97) between PPCPs and EDCs concentrations in the source water and in the drinking water over the one-year study period when data points from two sampling events with unusual removals were excluded. Individual water treatment unit processes showed greater temporal variations of PPCPs and EDCs removal efficiencies than the overall treatment processes. The removal efficiencies also varied greatly among different PPCPs and EDCs. The average removal for total PPCPs and EDCs was 76 ± 18% at the DWTP, with ozonation showing the highest removal efficiency. Based on the similar occurrence and removal trends observed as that of total PPCPs and EDCs in this study, DEET and nonylphenol can be considered as potential indicator compounds for predicting the occurrence and removal of total PPCPs and EDCs in surface water. No strong correlations could be found between total PPCPs and EDCs removal and the removal of suspended solids, turbidity, or organic carbon.
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Dose-normalization for exposure to mycophenolic acid and the early clinical outcome in patients taking tacrolimus after heart transplantation.
Ann. Transplant.
PUBLISHED: 06-25-2013
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The early phase of MPA exposure has rarely been investigated after solid organ transplantation, especially in heart transplantation patients. We evaluated the association between exposure to mycophenolic acid (MPA), a main metabolite of mycophenolate mofetil (MMF), and clinical events within 3 months after heart transplantation.
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Quantification of tumor necrosis factor-? and matrix metalloproteinases-3 in synovial fluid by a fiber-optic particle plasmon resonance sensor.
Analyst
PUBLISHED: 06-12-2013
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The availability of techniques for sensitive detection of early stage osteoarthritis is critical for improving patient health. This study illustrates the feasibility of a fiber-optic particle plasmon resonance (FOPPR) sensor with gold nanoparticles on the unclad region of optical fiber probes for analysis of osteoarthritis biomarkers, tumor necrosis factor-? (TNF-?) and matrix metalloproteinases-3 (MMP-3). Results show that the sensor can achieve a refractive index resolution of 5.18 × 10?? RIU and limits of detection for TNF-? and MMP-3 as low as 8.22 pg ml?¹ (0.48 pM) and 34.3 pg ml?¹ (1.56 pM), respectively. Additionally, the FOPPR sensor shows a good correlation in determining TNF-? and MMP-3 in synovial fluid with the clinically accepted enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) method. Finally, given the FOPPR sensors nature of being low-cost, label-free, highly sensitive, real-time, simple-to-operate, the FOPPR sensor could offer potential to monitor biomarkers of various diseases, and provide an ideal technical tool for point-of-care diagnostics.
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Readmission, mortality, and first-year medical costs after stroke.
J Chin Med Assoc
PUBLISHED: 05-31-2013
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Stroke is the leading cause of adult disability and mortality in Taiwan, resulting in a tremendous burden on the healthcare system. The purpose of this study was to characterize disease burden by evaluating readmissions, mortality, and medical cost during the first year after acute stroke under the National Health Insurance (NHI) program.
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Inhibition of p38 MAPK-dependent MutS homologue-2 (MSH2) expression by metformin enhances gefitinib-induced cytotoxicity in human squamous lung cancer cells.
Lung Cancer
PUBLISHED: 05-20-2013
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Gefitinib, a quinazoline-derived tyrosine kinase inhibitor, has anti-tumor activity in vivo and in vitro. Human MutS homologue-2 (MSH2) plays a central role in promoting genetic stability by correcting DNA replication errors. The present study investigated the effects of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signal on gefitinib-induced MSH2 expression in two human non-small cell lung squamous cancer cell lines.
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Detection and quantification of ionophore antibiotics in runoff, soil and poultry litter.
J Chromatogr A
PUBLISHED: 05-14-2013
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Ionophore antibiotics (IPAs) are widely used as coccidiostats in poultry and other livestock industries to promote growth and prevent infections. Because most of the ingested IPAs are excreted in poultry litter, which is primarily applied as grassland fertilizer, a significant amount of IPAs can be released into the litter-soil-water environment. A robust analytical method has been developed to quantify IPAs (monensin (MON), salinomycin (SAL) and narasin (NAR)) in complex environmental compartments including surface runoff, soil and poultry litter, with success to minimize matrix interference. The method for water samples involves solid-phase extraction (SPE) followed by liquid-liquid extraction (LLE) post-clean up steps. The method for solid samples involves bi-solvent LLE. IPAs were detected by HPLC-MS, with optimized parameters to achieve the highest sensitivity. Nigericin (NIG), an IPA not used in livestock industry, is successfully applied and validated as a surrogate standard. The method recoveries were at 92-95% and 81-85% in runoff samples from unfertilized and litter-fertilized fields, respectively. For solids, the method recoveries were at 93-99% in soils, and 79-83% in poultry litter samples. SAL was detected at up to 22mg/kg and MON and NAR at up to 4mg/kg in broiler litter from different farms. Up to 183?g/kg of MON was detected in litter-fertilized soils. All three IPAs were detected in the rainfall runoff from litter-fertilized lands at concentrations up to 9?g/L.
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The association of internet use and depression Among The spinal cord injury population.
Arch Phys Med Rehabil
PUBLISHED: 05-07-2013
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To examine the relationship between the frequency of Internet use and depression among people with spinal cord injury (SCI).
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Kinetics and modeling of degradation of ionophore antibiotics by UV and UV/H2O2.
Environ. Sci. Technol.
PUBLISHED: 04-25-2013
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Ionophore antibiotics (IPAs), one of the major groups of pharmaceuticals used in livestock industry, have been found to contaminate agricultural runoff and surface waters via land application of animal manures as fertilizers. However, limited research has investigated the means to remove IPAs from water sources. This study investigates the degradation of IPAs by using ultraviolet (UV) photolysis and UV combined with hydrogen peroxide (UV/H2O2) advanced oxidation process (AOP) under low-pressure (LP) UV lamps in various water matrices. Three widely used (monensin, salinomycin, and narasin) and one model (nigericin) IPAs exhibit low light absorption in the UV range and degrade slowly at the light intensity of 3.36 × 10(-6) Einstein·L(-1)·s(-1) under UV photolysis conditions. However, IPAs react with hydroxyl radicals produced by UV/H2O2 at fast reaction rates, with second-order reaction rate constants at (3.49-4.00) × 10(9) M(-1)·s(-1). Water matrix constituents enhanced the removal of IPAs by UV photolysis but inhibited UV/H2O2 process. A steady-state kinetic model successfully predicts the impact of water constituents on IPA degradation by UV/H2O2 and determines the optimal H2O2 dose by considering both energy consumption and IPA removal. LC/MS analysis of reaction products reveals the initial transformation pathways of IPAs via hydrogen atom abstraction and peroxidation during UV/H2O2. This study is among the first to provide a comprehensive understanding of the degradation of IPAs via UV/H2O2 AOP.
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Lack of achievement of a full score on the childhood myositis assessment scale by healthy four-year-olds and those recovering from juvenile dermatomyositis.
Arthritis Care Res (Hoboken)
PUBLISHED: 04-17-2013
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To test 4-year-olds, using 14 maneuvers of the Childhood Myositis Assessment Scale (CMAS), comparing healthy children with those with juvenile dermatomyositis (DM).
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Pulmonary function tests in idiopathic inflammatory myopathy: association with clinical parameters in children.
Arthritis Care Res (Hoboken)
PUBLISHED: 03-20-2013
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To determine the association of decreased lung function in children with idiopathic inflammatory myopathies (IIMs) with specific clinical parameters.
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Impact of interaction of cigarette smoking with angiotensin-converting enzyme polymorphisms on end-stage renal disease risk in a Han Chinese population.
J Renin Angiotensin Aldosterone Syst
PUBLISHED: 03-13-2013
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BACKGROUND: Several polymorphisms in the angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) and ACE2 genes are associated with the development of end-stage renal disease (ESRD). Certain genetic polymorphisms may modify the deleterious effects of environmental factors such as cigarette smoking and may also modify the inherited risk. We investigated the association of six ACE and ACE2 polymorphisms with ESRD to determine whether a relationship exists between gene-smoking interactions and ESRD. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We performed a case-control association study and genotyped 683 ESRD patients and 653 healthy controls. All subjects were genotyped for ACE (I/D, G2350A and A-240T) and ACE2 (G8790A, A1075G and G16854C) gene polymorphisms by polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) analysis. RESULTS: Significant associations were observed between ACE I/D and G2350A polymorphisms and ESRD. There was no difference in ACE2 genotype distribution between ESRD patients and healthy controls. Haplotype analysis showed that DAA and DAT haplotypes were risk factors for ESRD. Moreover, a gene-environment interaction was observed between ACE I/D polymorphism and cigarette smoking. CONCLUSION: ACE I/D and ACE G2350A polymorphisms were associated with the development of ESRD. The interaction between ACE I/D polymorphism and smoking is also associated with an enhanced risk of ESRD.
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Early life exposure to antibiotics and the risk of childhood allergic diseases: an update from the perspective of the hygiene hypothesis.
J Microbiol Immunol Infect
PUBLISHED: 03-08-2013
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The prevalence of allergic diseases has been growing rapidly in industrial countries during recent decades. It is postulated that growing up with less microbial exposure may render the immune system susceptible to a T helper type 2 (Th2)-predominant allergic response-also known as the hygiene hypothesis. This review delineates recent epidemiological and experimental evidence for the hygiene hypothesis, and integrates this hypothesis into the association between early life exposure to antibiotics and the development of allergic diseases and asthma. Several retrospective or prospective epidemiological studies reveal that early exposure to antibiotics may be positively associated with the development of allergic diseases and asthma. However, the conclusion is inconsistent. Experimental studies show that antibiotics may induce the Th2-skewed response by suppressing the T helper type 1 (Th1) response through inhibition of Th1 cytokines and disruption of the natural course of infection, or by disturbing the microflora of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract and therefore jeopardizing the establishment of oral tolerance and regulatory T cell immune responses. The hygiene hypothesis may not be the only explanation for the rapid increase in the prevalence of allergic diseases and asthma. Further epidemiological and experimental studies addressing the issue of the impact of environmental factors on the development of allergic diseases and the underlying mechanisms may unveil novel strategies for the prevention and treatment of allergic diseases in the future.
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Effects of balance training on functional outcome after total knee replacement in patients with knee osteoarthritis: a randomized controlled trial.
Clin Rehabil
PUBLISHED: 03-05-2013
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To evaluate the effectiveness of additional balance training on mobility and function outcome in patients with knee osteoarthritis after total knee replacement.
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Group constraint-induced movement therapy for children with hemiplegic cerebral palsy: a pilot study.
Am J Occup Ther
PUBLISHED: 02-26-2013
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OBJECTIVE. We investigated the feasibility and effectiveness of group-based constraint-induced movement therapy (CIMT) for children with hemiplegic cerebral palsy in a clinical setting. METHOD. Seven children received CIMT together under the guidance of two occupational therapy practitioners, 2.5 hr/day, 5 days/wk for 4 wk. We used the Grasping and Visual-Motor Integration subtests of the Peabody Developmental Motor Scales to assess the primary outcome and the Functional Skills and Caregiver Assistance Scales of the Pediatric Evaluation Disability Inventory to assess the secondary outcome. Children were examined at preintervention, postintervention, and 1- and 3-mo follow-up. RESULTS. Children demonstrated significant improvement on all outcome measures after intervention (all ps < .05, effect sizes = .39-.84), and effects were maintained at 3-mo follow-up. CONCLUSION. This preliminary study revealed that group-based CIMT for children with hemiplegic cerebral palsy may be a feasible and effective alternative to individual CIMT in clinical practice.
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Acid-catalyzed transformation of ionophore veterinary antibiotics: reaction mechanism and product implications.
Environ. Sci. Technol.
PUBLISHED: 02-22-2013
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Ionophore antibiotics (IPAs) are polyether antimicrobials widely used in the livestock industry and may enter the environment via land application of animal waste and agricultural runoff. Information is scarce regarding potential transformation of IPAs under environmental conditions. This study is among the first to identify the propensity of IPAs to undergo acid-catalyzed transformation in mildly acidic aquatic systems and characterize the reactions in depth. The study focused on the most widely used monensin (MON) and salinomycin (SAL), and also included narasin (NAR) in the investigation. All three IPAs are susceptible to acid-catalyzed transformation. MON reacts much more slowly than SAL and NAR and exhibits a different kinetic behavior that is further evaluated by a reversible reaction kinetic model. Extensive product characterization identifies that the spiro-ketal group of IPAs is the reactive site for the acid-catalyzed hydrolytic transformation, yielding predominantly isomeric and other products. Toxicity evaluation of the transformation products shows that the products retain some antimicrobial properties. The occurrence of IPAs and isomeric transformation products is also observed in poultry litter and agricultural runoff samples. Considering the common presence of mildly acidic environments (pH 4-7) in soils and waters, the acid-catalyzed transformation identified in this study likely plays an important role in the environmental fate of IPAs.
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Molecular signatures in skin associated with clinical improvement during mycophenolate treatment in systemic sclerosis.
J. Invest. Dermatol.
PUBLISHED: 02-20-2013
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Heterogeneity in systemic sclerosis (SSc) confounds clinical trials. We previously identified "intrinsic" gene expression subsets by analysis of SSc skin. Here we test the hypotheses that skin gene expression signatures including intrinsic subset are associated with modified Rodnan skin score (MRSS) improvement during mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) treatment. Gene expression and intrinsic subset assignment were measured in 12 SSc patients biopsies and 10 controls at baseline, and from serial biopsies of 1 cyclophosphamide-treated patient and 9 MMF-treated patients. Gene expression changes during treatment were determined using paired t-tests corrected for multiple hypothesis testing. MRSS improved in four of seven MMF-treated patients classified as the inflammatory intrinsic subset. Three patients without MRSS improvement were classified as normal-like or fibroproliferative intrinsic subsets. A total of 321 genes (false discovery rate (FDR)<5%) were differentially expressed at baseline between patients with and without MRSS improvement during treatment. The expression of 571 genes (FDR<10%) changed between pre- and post-MMF treatment biopsies for patients showing MRSS improvement. Gene expression changes in skin are only seen in patients with MRSS improvement. Baseline gene expression in skin, including intrinsic subset assignment, may identify SSc patients whose MRSS will improve during MMF treatment, suggesting that gene expression in skin may allow targeted treatment in SSc.
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Plasma metabolomic profiles predict near-term death among individuals with lower extremity peripheral arterial disease.
J. Vasc. Surg.
PUBLISHED: 02-19-2013
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Individuals with peripheral arterial disease (PAD) have a nearly two-fold increased risk of all-cause and cardiovascular disease mortality compared to those without PAD. This pilot study determined whether metabolomic profiling can accurately identify patients with PAD who are at increased risk of near-term mortality.
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Virological predictors of response to retreatment in hepatitis C genotype 2 infected patients.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 02-07-2013
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The impact of virological factors and interleukin-28B (IL-28B) genetic variants on retreatment of hepatitis C virus genotype 2 (HCV-2) treatment-experienced patients remains unknown.
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Urine post equivalent daily cranberry juice consumption may opsonize uropathogenicity of Escherichia coli.
J. Infect. Chemother.
PUBLISHED: 01-21-2013
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Basic studies have proven that cranberries may prevent urinary tract infections through changing the adhesiveness of Escherichia coli (E. coli) to urothelial cells. Various cranberry preparations, including extract powder, capsules, and juice, have been shown to be effective in clinical and epidemiological research. Because cranberries are most commonly consumed as juice in a diluted concentration, the aim of this study was to investigate whether the equivalent daily dose of cranberry juice is sufficient to modify host urine to change the uropathogenicity of E. coli. Urine from rats taking an equivalent daily dose of cranberry juice has been shown to decrease the capability of E. coli in hemagglutination, urothelium adhesion, nematode killing, and biofilm formation. All these changes occurred after E. coli was incubated in cranberry metabolite-containing urine, defined as urine opsonization. Urine opsonization of E. coli resulted in 40.9% (p = 0.0038) decrease in hemagglutination ability, 66.7% (p = 0.0181) decrease in urothelium adhesiveness, 16.7% (p = 0.0004) increase in the 50% lethal time in killing nematodes, and 53.9% (p = 5.9 × 10(-4)) decrease in biofilm formation. Thus, an equivalent daily dose of cranberry juice should be considered sufficiently potent to demonstrate urine opsonization in E. coli.
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A Y-like social chromosome causes alternative colony organization in fire ants.
Nature
PUBLISHED: 01-16-2013
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Intraspecific variability in social organization is common, yet the underlying causes are rarely known. In the fire ant Solenopsis invicta, the existence of two divergent forms of social organization is under the control of a single Mendelian genomic element marked by two variants of an odorant-binding protein gene. Here we characterize the genomic region responsible for this important social polymorphism, and show that it is part of a pair of heteromorphic chromosomes that have many of the key properties of sex chromosomes. The two variants, hereafter referred to as the social B and social b (SB and Sb) chromosomes, are characterized by a large region of approximately 13?megabases (55% of the chromosome) in which recombination is completely suppressed between SB and Sb. Recombination seems to occur normally between the SB chromosomes but not between Sb chromosomes because Sb/Sb individuals are non-viable. Genomic comparisons revealed limited differentiation between SB and Sb, and the vast majority of the 616 genes identified in the non-recombining region are present in the two variants. The lack of recombination over more than half of the two heteromorphic social chromosomes can be explained by at least one large inversion of around 9 megabases, and this absence of recombination has led to the accumulation of deleterious mutations, including repetitive elements in the non-recombining region of Sb compared with the homologous region of SB. Importantly, most of the genes with demonstrated expression differences between individuals of the two social forms reside in the non-recombining region. These findings highlight how genomic rearrangements can maintain divergent adaptive social phenotypes involving many genes acting together by locally limiting recombination.
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Hepatitis C virus infection in patients with primary biliary cirrhosis.
Ann Hepatol
PUBLISHED: 01-08-2013
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The aim of this study is to evaluate the role of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in patients with primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC).
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Band gap engineering of chemical vapor deposited graphene by in situ BN doping.
ACS Nano
PUBLISHED: 01-04-2013
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Band gap opening and engineering is one of the high priority goals in the development of graphene electronics. Here, we report on the opening and scaling of band gap in BN doped graphene (BNG) films grown by low-pressure chemical vapor deposition method. High resolution transmission electron microscopy is employed to resolve the graphene and h-BN domain formation in great detail. X-ray photoelectron, micro-Raman, and UV-vis spectroscopy studies revealed a distinct structural and phase evolution in BNG films at low BN concentration. Synchrotron radiation based XAS-XES measurements concluded a gap opening in BNG films, which is also confirmed by field effect transistor measurements. For the first time, a significant band gap as high as 600 meV is observed for low BN concentrations and is attributed to the opening of the ?-?* band gap of graphene due to isoelectronic BN doping. As-grown films exhibit structural evolution from homogeneously dispersed small BN clusters to large sized BN domains with embedded diminutive graphene domains. The evolution is described in terms of competitive growth among h-BN and graphene domains with increasing BN concentration. The present results pave way for the development of band gap engineered BN doped graphene-based devices.
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Androgenic Alopecia Is Associated with Less Dietary Soy, Higher Blood Vanadium and rs1160312 1 Polymorphism in Taiwanese Communities.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2013
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Although the genetic basis of androgenic alopecia has been clearly established, little is known about its non-genetic causes, such as environmental and lifestyle factors.
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Inhibition of p38 MAPK-dependent excision repair cross-complementing 1 expression decreases the DNA repair capacity to sensitize lung cancer cells to etoposide.
Mol. Cancer Ther.
PUBLISHED: 11-03-2011
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Etoposide (VP-16), a topoisomerase II inhibitor, is an effective anticancer drug currently used for the treatment of a wide range of cancers. Excision repair cross-complementary 1 (ERCC1) is a key protein involved in the process of nucleotide excision repair. High level of ERCC1 expression in cancers is associated with resistance to DNA damage-based chemotherapy. In this study, the effects of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signal on the ERCC1 expression induced by etoposide in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines was investigated. Etoposide increased phosphorylated MAPK kinase 3/6 (MKK3/6)-p38 MAPK and ERCC1 protein and mRNA levels in A549 and H1975 cells. Moreover, SB202190, a p38 inhibitor, or knockdown of p38 expression by specific short interfering RNA (siRNA) significantly decreased the etoposide-induced ERCC1 protein levels and DNA repair capacity in etoposide-exposed NSCLC cells. Enhancement of p38 activation by constitutively active MKK6 (MKK6E) increased ERCC1 protein levels. Specific inhibition of ERCC1 by siRNA significantly enhanced the etoposide-induced cytotoxicity and hypoxanthine guanine phosphoribosyltransferase (hprt) gene mutation rate. Moreover, the Hsp90 inhibitor 17-allylamino-17-demethoxygeldanamycin (17-AAG) could decrease the etoposide-induced p38 MAPK-mediated ERCC1 expression and augment the cytotoxic effect and growth inhibition by etopsoside. 17-AAG and etoposide-induced synergistic cytotoxic effect and DNA repair capacity decrease could be abrogated in lung cancer cells with MKK6E or HA-p38 MAPK expression vector transfection. Our results suggest that in human NSCLC cells, ERCC1 is induced by etoposide through the p38 MAPK pathway, and this phenomenon is required for NSCLC survival and resistant DNA damage.
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On-pump beating-heart coronary artery bypass provides efficacious short- and long-term outcomes in hemodialysis patients.
Nephrol. Dial. Transplant.
PUBLISHED: 09-27-2011
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On-pump beating-heart coronary artery bypass grafting surgery (CABG) is beneficial due to the elimination of cardioplegic arrest. However, there are few reports regarding its efficacy in chronic hemodialysis patients. This study investigated the potential benefits of on-pump beating-heart CABG in chronic hemodialysis patients.
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Differential effects of amelogenin on mineralization of cementoblasts and periodontal ligament cells.
J. Periodontol.
PUBLISHED: 09-26-2011
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Amelogenin is a major component of developing extracellular enamel matrix proteins and plays a crucial role during the formation of tooth enamel. In addition, amelogenins are suggested to exert biologic functions as signaling molecules through cell-surface receptors. The purpose of this study is to examine the effect of recombinant human full-length amelogenin (rh174) on the mineralization of human cementoblasts (HCEMs) and human periodontal ligament cells (HPDLs).
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Contribution of resistance-nodulation-division efflux pump operon smeU1-V-W-U2-X to multidrug resistance of Stenotrophomonas maltophilia.
Antimicrob. Agents Chemother.
PUBLISHED: 09-19-2011
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KJ09C, a multidrug-resistant mutant of Stenotrophomonas maltophilia KJ, was generated by in vitro selection with chloramphenicol. The multidrug-resistant phenotype of KJ09C was attributed to overexpression of a resistance nodulation division (RND)-type efflux system encoded by an operon consisting of five genes: smeU1, smeV, smeW, smeU2, and smeX. Proteins encoded by smeV, smeW, and smeX were similar to the membrane fusion protein, RND transporter, and outer membrane protein, respectively, of known RND-type systems. The proteins encoded by smeU1 and smeU2 were found to belong to the family of short-chain dehydrogenases/reductases. Mutant KJ09C exhibited increased resistance to chloramphenicol, quinolones, and tetracyclines and susceptibility to aminoglycosides; susceptibility to ?-lactams and erythromycin was not affected. The expression of the smeU1-V-W-U2-X operon was regulated by the divergently transcribed LysR-type regulator gene smeRv. Overexpression of the SmeVWX pump contributed to the acquired resistance to chloramphenicol, quinolones, and tetracyclines. Inactivation of smeV and smeW completely abolished the activity of the SmeVWX pump, whereas inactivation of smeX alone decreased the activity of the SmeVWX pump. The enhanced aminoglycoside susceptibility observed in KJ09C resulted from SmeX overexpression.
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The T-1237C polymorphism of the Toll-like receptor-9 gene is associated with chronic kidney disease in a Han Chinese population.
Tohoku J. Exp. Med.
PUBLISHED: 09-13-2011
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Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is increasingly recognized as a global public health problem. As inflammatory processes and genetic factors are involved in the pathogenesis of CKD, we have investigated the potential genetic contribution of Toll-like receptor (TLR) gene polymorphisms in CKD. In a case-control association study, 149 CKD patients and 429 healthy controls were genotyped by real-time polymerase chain reaction. CKD patients were defined as kidney damage (albuminuria, proteinuria or hematuria) or glomerular filtration rate < 60 ml/min/1.73 m(2) for 3 months or more. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) at TLR-2 G2408A, TLR-4 A12874G and C13174T, and TLR-9 T-1237C, T-1486C, and G1635A were assessed, and linkage disequilibrium calculations and haplotype association analysis were undertaken. The functions of TLR-9 have been documented to recognize the viral and bacterial CpG DNA sequences, whereas detects microbe-derived peptidoglycan and lipopeptides and TLR-4 binds lipopolysaccharides. SNPs within the TLR genes may influence promoter activity, mRNA conformation and subcellular localization, and/or protein structure and function. Our results show that only the TLR-9 T-1237C and G1635A gene polymorphisms demonstrate an association with CKD (p = 0.002 and p = 0.04, respectively). The TLR-9 TCA haplotype at T-1237C, T-1486C, and G1635A was associated with a lower risk of CKD, whereas the TTA haplotype was associated with a higher risk of CKD. In the Han Chinese population, those who carry the C and A alleles at SNPs T-1237C and G1635A in the TLR-9 gene appear to be more susceptible to the development of CKD.
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N-nitrosamines formation from secondary amines by nitrogen fixation on the surface of activated carbon.
Environ. Sci. Technol.
PUBLISHED: 09-08-2011
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Our previous study demonstrated that many commercial activated carbon (AC) particles may catalyze transformation of secondary amines to yield trace levels of N-nitrosamines under ambient aerobic conditions. Because of the widespread usage of AC materials in numerous analytical and environmental applications, it is imperative to understand the reaction mechanism responsible for formation of nitrosamine on the surface of ACs to minimize their occurrence in water treatment systems and during analytical methods employing ACs. The study results show that the AC-catalyzed nitrosamine formation requires both atmospheric oxygen and nitrogen. ACs surface reactive sites react with molecular oxygen to form reactive oxygen species (ROS), which facilitate fixation of molecular nitrogen on the carbon surfaces to generate reactive nitrogen species (RNS) likely nitrous oxide and hydroxylamine that can react with adsorbed amines to form nitrosamines. ACs properties play a crucial role as more nitrosamine formation is associated with carbon surfaces with higher surface area, more surface defects, reduced surface properties, higher O(2) uptake capacity, and higher carbonyl group content. This study is a first of its kind on the nitrosamine formation mechanism involving nitrogen fixation on AC surfaces, and the information will be useful for minimization of nitrosamines in AC-based processes.
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Stem cell therapy for erectile dysfunction: a critical review.
Stem Cells Dev.
PUBLISHED: 09-07-2011
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Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a prevailing health problem that seriously impacts quality of life. Current treatment options are less effective for patients having cavernous nerve (CN) injury or diabetes mellitus-related ED. These 2 types of ED are thus the main focus of past and current stem cell (SC) therapy studies. In a total of 16 studies so far, rats were exclusively used as disease models and SCs were mostly derived from bone marrow, adipose tissue, or skeletal muscle. For tracking, SCs were labeled with LacZ, green fluorescent protein, 4,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole, DiI, bromodeoxyuridine, or 5-ethynyl-2-deoxyuridine, some of which might have led to data misinterpretation. SC transplantation was done exclusively by intracavernous (IC) injection, which has been recently shown to have systemic effects. Functional assessment was done exclusively by measuring increases of IC pressure during electrostimulation of CN. Histological assessment usually focused on endothelial, smooth muscle, and CN contents in the penis. In general, favorable outcomes have been obtained in all trials so far, although whether SCs had differentiated into specific cell lineages remains controversial. Recent studies have shown that intracavernously injected SCs rapidly escaped the penis and homed into bone marrow. This could perhaps explain why intracavernously injected SCs had systemic antidiabetic effects and prolonged anti-ED effects. These hypotheses and the differentiation-versus-paracrine debate require further investigation.
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JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.

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In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.