Preliminary Data (preliminary + data)

Distribution by Scientific Domains
Distribution within Medical Sciences

Selected Abstracts

Prenatal Stretching Exercise and Autonomic Responses: Preliminary Data and a Model for Reducing Preeclampsia

SeonAe Yeo RNC
Abstract Purpose: Preeclampsia is a leading cause of perinatal mortality and morbidity, and it increases maternal risk for future cardiovascular disease. The purpose of the study was to explore the relationships among stretching exercise, autonomic cardiac response, and the development of preeclampsia. Design: Secondary data analysis. Methods: Heart rate and pulse pressure were longitudinally examined in this secondary data analysis among women who engaged in stretching exercise daily from 18 weeks of gestation to the end of pregnancy compared with women who did walking exercise daily during the same time period. A total of 124 women were randomized to either stretching (n=60) or walking (n=64) in the parent study. Findings: Heart rates in the stretching group were consistently lower than those in the walking group. Conclusions: Based on the results of this secondary data analyses, a physiologic framework for possible beneficial effects of stretching exercise by enhancing autonomic responses on reducing risks for preeclampsia is proposed and discussed. Clinical Relevance: If the protective effect is established, stretching exercise can be translated into nursing intervention for prenatal care. [source]

Histopathologic Clusters Differentiate Subgroups Within the Nonspecific Diagnoses of CAN or CR: Preliminary Data from the DeKAF Study

A. J. Matas
The nonspecific diagnoses ,chronic rejection',CAN', or ,IF/TA' suggest neither identifiable pathophysiologic mechanisms nor possible treatments. As a first step to developing a more useful taxonomy for causes of new-onset late kidney allograft dysfunction, we used cluster analysis of individual Banff score components to define subgroups. In this multicenter study, eligibility included being transplanted prior to October 1, 2005, having a ,baseline' serum creatinine ,2.0 mg/dL before January 1, 2006, and subsequently developing deterioration of graft function leading to a biopsy. Mean time from transplant to biopsy was 7.5 ± 6.1 years. Of the 265 biopsies (all with blinded central pathology interpretation), 240 grouped into six large (n > 13) clusters. There were no major differences between clusters in recipient demographics. The actuarial postbiopsy graft survival varied by cluster (p = 0.002). CAN and CNI toxicity were common diagnoses in each cluster (and did not differentiate clusters). Similarly, C4d and presence of donor specific antibody were frequently observed across clusters. We conclude that for recipients with new-onset late graft dysfunction, cluster analysis of Banff scores distinguishes meaningful subgroups with differing outcomes. [source]

Appraisal of Social Concerns: A cognitive assessment instrument for social phobia

Michael J. Telch Ph.D.
Abstract The current study describes the validation of a new cognitive assessment measure for social phobia, entitled the Appraisal of Social Concerns (ASC). Item content is relevant to a range of social situations. The ASC can be used to tailor interventions to patients' idiosyncratic concerns. Data are presented from both clinical (n=71) and non-clinical (n=550) samples. Preliminary data indicate that the ASC has good internal consistency and test,retest reliability. The construct validity of the ASC is comparable to that of well-established measures in use with social phobics. A strength of the ASC is its sensitivity to the effect of treatment. An exploratory factor analysis yielded three factors tapping concerns about negative evaluation, observable symptoms, and social helplessness. Subscale scores were strongly correlated. Preliminary findings suggest that the ASC is a psychometrically sound, time efficient instrument that can be used for both clinical and research purposes. Depression and Anxiety 19:217,224, 2004. © 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

Whiteflies on tomato crops in Portugal,

EPPO BULLETIN, Issue 1 2002
A. Lopes
In Portugal during the 1960/1980s, there was intensive development of vegetable crop production, in particular protected crops, of which tomato was the most important. The main producing regions now are Ribatejo e Oeste, Alentejo and Algarve. Tomato presents extensive phytosanitary problems, being host to a wide range of pests, including the whiteflies Trialeurodes vaporariorum, in protected crops, and Bemisia tabaci, in protected and field crops. Portugal has applied for the status of an EU ,protected zone' for this latter pest. As B. tabaci is an important vector of a large number of viruses, including tomato yellow leaf curl viruses (TYLCV), a monitoring programme of the tomato crop was implemented in Portugal. Preliminary data are presented concerning B. tabaci in the three main tomato-growing regions of the country. [source]

Autologous transplantation in relapsed and refractory Hodgkin's disease

Andreas Josting
Abstract:, The current data support the use of high-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) and autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT) as standard procedure for the majority of patients with Hodgkin's disease (HD) relapsing or progressing after combination chemotherapy. Prognostic factors reflecting unfavourable prognostic features of the disease as well as resistance to conventional salvage therapy have been identified. Preliminary data suggests a high efficacy of high-dose sequential chemotherapies in these patients. An ongoing randomized trial is comparing standard HDCT versus sequential HDCT in patients with relapsed HD. [source]

Noble gas and boron isotopic signatures of the Bacon-Manito geothermal fluid, Philippines

Abstract Noble gas isotopic composition and abundances were determined on dry gas sampled in geothermal wells from the Bacon-Manito (BGPF) geothermal field in the Philippines. The most significant findings come from the 3He/4He ratio; a mantle-He source is evidenced by ratio close to 7 Ra. Peripheral fluid from the west and south of the geothermal system is relatively enriched in 4He (R/Ra slightly > 2), most probably sourced from U and Th decay in old igneous or crustal rocks. The two end-members mix, producing the range of R/Ra ratios observed in the other wells included in this study. Preliminary data on the ,11B signature of the Bacon Manito fluid separated from vapour range from 7, to 9,. These values suggest that the local magmatic rocks could represent the main boron source, in agreement with the boron isotopic signature of Pacific arc lavas. [source]

RANTES stimulates inflammatory cascades and receptor modulation in murine astrocytes

GLIA, Issue 1 2002
Yi Luo
Abstract Cultured mouse astrocytes respond to the CC chemokine RANTES by production of chemokine and cytokine transcripts. Stimulation of astrocytes with 1 nM RANTES or 3,10 nM of the structurally related chemokines (eotaxin, macrophage inflammatory protein-1, and -, [MIP-1,, MIP-1,]) induced transcripts for KC, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1), tumor necrosis factor-, (TNF-,), MIP-1,, MIP-2, and RANTES in a chemokine and cell-specific fashion. Synthesis of chemokine (KC and MCP-1) and cytokine (TNF-,) proteins was also demonstrated. RANTES-mediated chemokine synthesis was specifically inhibited by pertussis toxin, indicating that G-protein-coupled chemokine receptors participated in astrocyte signaling. Astrocytes expressed CCR1 and CCR5 (the redundant RANTES receptors). Astrocytes derived from mice with targeted mutations of either CCR1 or CCR5 respond after RANTES stimulation, suggesting multiple chemokine receptors may separately mediate RANTES responsiveness in astrocytes. Preliminary data suggest activation of the MAP kinase pathway is also critical for RANTES-mediated signaling in astrocytes. Treatment with RANTES specifically modulated astrocyte receptors upregulating intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1) and downregulating CX3CR1 expression. Thus, after chemokine treatment, astrocytes release proinflammatory mediators and reprogram their surface molecules. The combined effects of RANTES may serve to amplify inflammatory responses within the central nervous system. GLIA 39:19,30, 2002. © 2002 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

Alternatives to standard hemodialysis

Abstract Survival of patients on hemodialysis remains poor, but the benefits of increasing urea clearance have probably been maximized within our current treatment schedules. Long dialysis sessions (8 hr) produce impressive outcomes, with mortality 53% to 55% lower than conventional schedules. Even increasing from 4 to 5 hr may improve survival. Increased frequency of dialysis (6 times weekly) produces impressive reductions in left ventricular mass and could conceivably be implemented in-center. Preliminary data suggest a 61% reduction in mortality with increased frequency. Nightly dialysis combines longer sessions with increased frequency and has produced remarkable clinical gains in blood pressure, left ventricular mass, serum phosphate, and sleep apnea. However, the data are mainly from case series and impact on mortality remains unknown. Expansion of home hemodialysis would be necessary for this modality to grow. Convective therapies remove middle molecules more effectively, and observational data suggest hemodiafiltration has the potential to improve mortality by 35% to 36%. Hemodiafiltration has the advantage of being relatively easy to implement. The uremic milieu is complex and further investigation of the underlying pathophysiology is needed to inform future dialysis interventions. The survival data above are from observational studies, and hence benefits are likely to be exaggerated. Randomized trials of dialysis interventions are desperately needed. They remain difficult to perform, because of the complexity of both the patient population and the interventions, and because of limited available funding. [source]

Myocilin allele-specific glaucoma phenotype database,

HUMAN MUTATION, Issue 2 2008
Alex W. Hewitt
Abstract Glaucoma, a complex heterogenous disease, is the leading cause for optic nerve,related blindness worldwide. Since 1997, when mutations in the myocilin (MYOC) gene were identified as causing juvenile onset as well as a proportion of primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG), more than 180 variants have been documented. Approximately one in 30 unselected patients with POAG have a disease-causing myocilin mutation and it has been shown that firm genotype,phenotype correlations exist. We have compiled an online catalog of myocilin variants and their associated phenotypes. This locus-specific resource, to which future submissions can be made, is available online (; last accessed 28 August 2007). The database, constructed using MySQL, contains three related sheets that contain data pertaining to the information source, variant identified, and relevant study data, respectively. The website contains a list of all identified variants and summary statistics as well as background genomic information, such as the annotated sequence and cross-protein/species homology. Phenotypic data such as the mean±standard deviation (SD) age at POAG diagnosis, mean±SD maximum recorded intraocular pressure, proportion of patients requiring surgical intervention, and age-related penetrance can be viewed by selecting a particular mutation. Approximately 40% of the identified sequence variants have been characterized as disease causing, with the majority (,85%) of these being missense mutations. Preliminary data generated from this online resource highlight the strong genotype,phenotype correlations associated with specific myocilin mutations. The large-scale assimilation of relevant data allows for accurate comprehensive genetic counseling and the translation of genomic information into the clinic. Hum Mutat 29(2), 207,211, 2008. © 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

The Nutrition, Aging, and Memory in Elders (NAME) study: design and methods for a study of micronutrients and cognitive function in a homebound elderly population

Tammy M. Scott
Abstract Background Micronutrient status can affect cognitive function in the elderly; however, there is much to learn about the precise effects. Understanding mediating factors by which micronutrient status affects cognitive function would contribute to elders' quality of life and their ability to remain in the home. Objectives The Nutrition, Aging, and Memory in Elders (NAME) Study is designed to advance the current level of knowledge by investigating potential mediating factors by which micronutrient status contributes to cognitive impairment and central nervous system abnormalities in the elderly. NAME targets homebound elders because they are understudied and particularly at risk for poor nutritional status. Methods Subjects are community-based elders aged 60 and older, recruited through area Aging Services Access Points. The NAME core data include demographics; neuropsychological testing and activities of daily living measures; food frequency, health and behavioral questionnaires; anthropometrics; gene status; plasma micronutrients, homocysteine, and other blood determinants. A neurological examination, psychiatric examination, and brain MRI and volumetric measurements are obtained from a sub-sample. Results Preliminary data from first 300 subjects are reported. These data show that the NAME protocol is feasible and that the enrolled subjects are racially diverse, at-risk, and had similar basic demographics to the population from which they were drawn. Conclusion The goal of the NAME study is to evaluate novel relationships between nutritional factors and cognitive impairment. These data may provide important information on potential new therapeutic strategies and supplementation standards for the elderly to maintain cognitive function and potentially reduce the public health costs of dementia. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Eye movements during fixation as velocity noise in minimum motion detection

Abstract The functional roles and perceptual consequences of fixational eye movements are argued. The retinal image motions due to these eye movements are viewed as normally unnoticed velocity noise that limits performance of minimum motion detection without reference. When the motion detection threshold and the variability of eye velocity during fixation were measured for a group of normal adult observers, an interobserver correlation was established between psychophysical and oculomotor data. In particular, when both eyes were open, the threshold of unreferenced motion was positively correlated with the fixation instability of the eye, making larger drifts. Preliminary data also suggested the possibility that the fixation instability of this eye still dominates the detection threshold if this eye was occluded during the task. Possible schemes of living with such velocity noise as originating from fixation instability are discussed. [source]

Using technical innovations in clinical practice: The Drinker's Check-Up software program

Daniel D. Squires
Interest in assessing and treating a variety of psychological conditions with software programs is increasing rapidly. This article reviews a software program for problem drinkers entitled the Drinker's Check-Up (DCU) and illustrates its use with three patients. The DCU is based on the principles of brief motivational interventions and can be used as a stand-alone intervention by therapists without expertise in substance abuse or as a prelude to alcohol treatment services. It is the first software program to provide integrated assessment, feedback, and assistance with decision making for individuals experiencing problems with alcohol. Preliminary data from an ongoing clinical trial of the DCU as a stand-alone intervention indicate that it is an effective intervention for a wide range of problem drinkers. © 2003 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Clin Psychol/In Session. [source]

Inter-relationship of cytokine production and NOS2 expression in microglia

C. Dello Russo
Under normal conditions, glial cells provide neurotrophic support, but can contribute to damage during neurodegenerative disorders such as multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer's disease. Once activated, glia produce and release inflammatory mediators and potentially neurotoxic substances (including cytokines, NO, and prostanoids) whose interactions could lead to sustained inflammation. We investigated the relationship between cytokine production and NO release using enriched cultures of rat microglia. Preliminary data suggest that low concentrations of endotoxin LPS (1,10 ng/mL) activated microglia by a complex mechanism involving NF,B activation, cAMP increase and PKA activation, and IL-1, production and release. We characterized this system using pharmacological activators and inhibitors of NF,B and PKA, and IL-1r, to reduce IL-1, effects. Norepinephrine (NE) dose-dependently inhibited LPS-induced NOS2 expression and NO generation, via activation of ,-2 adrenergic receptors (,2-ARs) and elevation of cAMP. Similarly, NE dose-dependently blocked LPS-dependent IL-1, production. The addition of PKA inhibitors did not reverse the suppressive effects of NE on NO production, but did reverse its effects on IL-1,. Addition of IL-1r, also reduced NO production, and exogenous IL-1, reversed the inhibitory effects of NE. These data suggest that effects of NE on LPS-dependent NO release is, at least in part, mediated by blocking of IL-1, secretion. At the same time, results with inhibitors suggest that PKA activation is necessary for LPS effects. Together, these results point to the existence of autocrine and paracrine regulatory mechanisms of microglia activation. The relationship between cytokines and NO could be an important mechanism of sustained and disruptive microglia activation. [source]

145 Preliminary Results of Cytoskeletal Components in Various Red Algae Using Confocal Laser Scanning Microscopy

W. E. Schmidt
Data concerning the cytoskeletal components of red algae are scant. The goal of this ongoing comparative survey is to develop a more complete characterization of the red algal cytoskeleton, and subsequent elucidation of its function, using representative taxa belonging to major evolutionary lineages within the Rhodophyta. Preliminary data were obtained using enzyme digestion of cell walls and detergent rinses with direct (phalloidin) and indirect (monoclonal antibodies) labeling methods for microfilaments and tubulin, respectively. Samples were viewed using confocal laser scanning microscopy. Results will be discussed in light of the more thoroughly understood cytoskeletal system reported for green algae. [source]

Copper-coated microsprayer interface for on-line sheathless capillary electrophoresis electrospray mass spectrometry of carbohydrates

Alina D. Zamfir
Abstract A sturdy home-built sheathless CE/ESI-QTOF-MS system was developed and optimized for carbohydrate analysis. The interface and employed methodology provided a simple analytical solution to laborious CE/MS interfacing methods and to problems in characterization of complex carbohydrate mixtures that require high-resolution separation of the components. The CE/ESI interface, feasible in any MS laboratory, consists of a one-piece CE column having the CE terminus in-laboratory shaped as a microsprayer and coated with copper. The CE microsprayer was inserted into an in-house made stainless steel clenching device and the whole assembly was mounted onto a quadrupole TOF mass spectrometer. The analytical potential of the interface in terms of suitability, microsprayer performance, copper coat durability, ionization efficiency, spray stability, and sensitivity was tested first on a simple mixture of standard saccharides, which were separated, resolved, and detected with high separation efficiency. The approach was next assessed for the screening of a biological sample, a complex mixture of O -glycosylated sialylated amino acids from urine of a patient suffering from Schindler disease. Preliminary data allow this method to be considered as one of general applicability in structural glycobiology and glycomics and easy to be implemented for proteomic surveys as well. [source]

University of Rhode Island Change Assessment,Trauma: Preliminary psychometric properties in an alcohol-dependent PTSD sample

Yvonne M. Hunt
The co-occurrence of posttraumatic stress disorder with substance use disorders (PTSD-SUD) is common and is associated with poorer treatment outcomes. Attrition represents an ongoing, but poorly understood challenge in PTSD-SUD treatment research. The current study examined the initial psychometric properties of the University of Rhode Island Change Assessment,Trauma (URICA-T), a scale designed to assess attitudes and behaviors related to addressing trauma issues, in a sample of 42 individuals meeting diagnostic criteria for PTSD and alcohol dependence. Results suggest that the URICA-T may have acceptable psychometric properties as a continuous measure of motivational readiness in a PTSD-SUD sample. Preliminary data also suggests higher URICA-T scores are associated with retention of alcohol dependent-PTSD participants in a study utilizing trauma-focused exposure. [source]

Treatment of chronic hepatitis C virus infection in patients with cirrhosis

Chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection eventually leads to cirrhosis in 20,30% of patients and to hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in 1,5% of patients. Rates of sustained virological response with standard interferon-, (IFN-,) are low in patients without cirrhosis (generally < 20%) and are even lower in those with cirrhosis. Combination therapy with IFN and ribavirin improves response rates in patients with chronic hepatitis C without cirrhosis, and the results from subgroups of HCV-infected patients with advanced fibrosis or cirrhosis are encouraging. Importantly, treatment with IFN slows progression of liver fibrosis, regardless of HCV genotype or early response to therapy, and reduces the risk of HCC by two- to fivefold. The risk of development of HCC is also lower in patients who show at least a partial response to IFN therapy compared with those who show no response. There is a clear need for more definitive studies of treatment in patients with chronic hepatitis C and cirrhosis, ideally using therapies with greater efficacy. Nonetheless, based on the potential to slow the progression of liver fibrosis (regardless of treatment response) and to reduce the risk of HCC, a greater number of HCV-infected patients with cirrhosis should be considered as candidates for IFN treatment. Preliminary data indicate that pegylated IFNs have improved virological response rates and may have additional clinical benefits in the prevention or reduction of fibrosis and retardation of progression of cirrhosis and HCC in these patients. [source]

Genes or environment to determine alcoholic liver disease and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease

C. P. Day
Abstract: While the vast majority of heavy drinkers and individuals with obesity, insulin resistance, and the metabolic syndrome will have steatosis, only a minority will ever develop steatohepatitis, fibrosis, and cirrhosis. Genetic and environmental risk factors for advanced alcoholic liver disease (ALD) and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) seem likely to include factors that influence the severity of steatosis and oxidative stress, the cytokine milieu, the magnitude of the immune response, and/or the severity of fibrosis. For ALD, the dose and pattern of alcohol intake, along with obesity are the most important environmental factors determining disease risk. For NAFLD, dietary saturated fat and antioxidant intake and small bowel bacterial overgrowth may play a role. Family studies and interethnic variations in susceptibility suggest that genetic factors are important in determining disease risk. For ALD, functional polymorphisms in the alcohol dehydrogenases and aldehyde dehydrogenase alcohol metabolising genes play a role in determining susceptibility in Oriental populations. No genetic associations with advanced NAFLD have been replicated in large studies. Preliminary data suggest that polymorphisms in the genes encoding microsomal triglyceride transfer protein, superoxide dismutase 2, the CD14 endotoxin receptor, TNF-,, transforming growth factor-,, and angiotensinogen may be associated with steatohepatitis and/or fibrosis. [source]

Leukotriene pathway genetics and pharmacogenetics in allergy

ALLERGY, Issue 6 2009
N. P. Duroudier
Leukotrienes (LT) are biologically active lipid mediators known to be involved in allergic inflammation. Leukotrienes have been shown to mediate diverse features of allergic conditions including inflammatory cell chemotaxis/activation and smooth muscle contraction. Cysteinyl leukotrienes (LTC4, LTD4 and, LTE4) and the dihydroxy leukotriene LTB4 are generated by a series of enzymes/proteins constituting the LT synthetic pathway or 5-lipoxygenase (5-LO) pathway. Their function is mediated by interacting with multiple receptors. Leukotriene receptor antagonists (LTRA) and LT synthesis inhibitors (LTSI) have shown clinical efficacy in asthma and more recently in allergic rhinitis. Despite growing knowledge of leukotriene biology, the molecular regulation of these inflammatory mediators remains to be fully understood. Genes encoding enzymes of the 5-LO pathway (i.e. ALOX5, LTC4S and LTA4H) and encoding for LT receptors (CYSLTR1/2 and LTB4R1/2) provide excellent candidates for disease susceptibility and severity; however, their role remains unclear. Preliminary data also suggest that 5-LO pathway/receptor gene polymorphism can predict patient responses to LTSI and LTRA; however, the exact mechanisms require elucidation. The aim of this review was to summarize the recent advances in the knowledge of these important mediators, focusing on genetic and pharmacogenetic aspects in the context of allergic phenotypes. [source]

Polymorphic microsatellite loci for assigning parentage in least flycatchers (Empidonax minimus)

S. A. Tarof
Abstract Least flycatchers (Empidonax minimus) are socially monogamous birds that form tight territorial aggregations on the breeding grounds. We designed five polymorphic microsatellite loci for assigning parentage to offspring within least flycatcher clusters. The number of alleles per locus ranged from 7 to 18. Mean polymorphic information content was 83.8%; the probability of exclusion with known maternal genotype was 0.999. These microsatellites are powerful DNA markers for identifying extra-pair paternity in this species. Preliminary data also suggest that these loci may be useful for other members of this genus. [source]

The braun thermoscan thermometer: validation of normal ranges in a paediatric practice

C.A. Streets
Introduction Pyrexia is a common cause of operative cancellation in paediatric practice, and so the accurate determination of temperature is of paramount importance. Recently the Braun ThermoScan infrared aural thermometer has been introduced to Derriford Hospital as a safe and non-invasive technique for measuring temperature. Initially the published upper limits of normal for this technique appeared to be higher than expected. Initial experiences with the thermometer in Derriford Hospital produced high temperature readings in children who were otherwise clinically well. The aim of this study was to compare the manufacturer's published normal ranges with those obtained from a general paediatric population. Methods Ethics Committee approval was obtained. The study was conducted between July and November 2001. Patients less than 16 years of age, and admitted to either the Day Surgical Unit or the general paediatric wards for elective surgery were included. Each child had its temperature measured on admission using the Braun ThermoScan aural thermometer. The ages and temperatures were recorded, and the values compared with the manufacturer's normal ranges using standard error of the means. Results Preliminary data are reported from 248 children: 1,2 years (n = 30), 3,10 years (n = 159), and 11,15 years (n = 59). The table demonstrates that there is no significant statistical difference between the manufacturer's ranges and those of the Derriford Hospital paediatric elective surgical population. Discussion The Braun ThermoScan infrared aural thermometer is considered to be a safe, hygienic, and convenient technique for measuring temperature. Despite initial misgivings that a temperature approaching 38°C could not be considered normal, this study has confirmed that the manufacturer's published normal ranges are indeed compatible with those obtained from a district general hospital paediatric population. Conclusion This study validates the manufacturer's published normal range for the Braun ThermoScan thermometer. This therefore leaves a clinical dilemma , does a child with a temperature of 37.9°C have a pyrexia or not? [source]

Optimization of DNA Extraction from a Scleractinian Coral for the Detection of Thymine Dimers by Immunoassay,

Anastazia T. Banaszak
ABSTRACT Ultraviolet (UV)-B is known to cause DNA damage, principally by the formation of thymine dimers, but little research has been conducted in coral reef environments where UV doses are high. The majority of tropical reef-dwelling corals form a mutualistic symbiosis with the dinoflagellate Symbiodinium but few studies have been conducted on in situ DNA damage in corals and none have investigated the symbiotic components separately. The aim of this research was to quantify DNA damage in both the coral host and the dinoflagellate symbiont. The first step in this investigation was to optimize the extraction of DNA from the host, Porites astreoides, as well as the symbiont. The optimization was divided into a series of steps: the preservation of the samples, separation of the coral tissue from the skeleton, separation of the host tissue from the algal cells to prevent cross contamination as well as the extraction and purification of genomic DNA from the algae that are located intracellularly within the invertebrate animal tissue. The best preservation method was freezing at low temperatures without ethanol. After scraping with a razor blade, the coral tissue can be divided into host and algal components and the DNA extracted using modifications of published techniques yielding DNA suitable for the quantification of thymine dimer formation using antibodies. Preliminary data suggest that in P. astreoides collected from 1 m depth, thymine dimers form approximately 2.8 times more frequently in the host DNA than in the DNA of its symbionts. [source]

The development and evaluation of a measure to assess cancer survivors' unmet supportive care needs: the CaSUN (Cancer Survivors' Unmet Needs measure)

K. Hodgkinson
Abstract Background: Many cancer survivors experience ongoing morbidity over the survivorship continuum and their supportive care needs have yet to be comprehensively assessed. Methods: This study aimed to develop and empirically evaluate a self-report measure of cancer survivors' supportive care needs. In Phase I, questionnaire items were generated based upon previous qualitative research that identified both unique and shared needs in survivors and their partners; items were constructed into the Cancer Survivors' Unmet Needs measure (CaSUN). In Phase 2, the CaSUN was completed by 353 cancer survivors who had been diagnosed with cancer between 1 and 15 years earlier and were currently disease-free. Results: After modification, the CaSUN included 35 unmet need items, 6 positive change items and an open-ended question. Good acceptability, internal consistency and validity were demonstrated, although test,retest reliability was low. Maximum likelihood factor analysis identified five discrete factors: Existential Survivorship, Comprehensive Care, Information, Quality of Life and Relationships. Conclusions: Preliminary data indicates that the CaSUN meets the majority of psychometric criteria for assessment measures, although its low test,retest reliability awaits further investigation. The CaSUN will facilitate the evaluation of supportive care services and generation of service delivery recommendations for cancer survivors. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Quality of life in patients diagnosed with primary hepatocellular carcinoma: Hepatic arterial infusion of Cisplatin versus 90-Yttrium microspheres (Therasphere®)

Jennifer Steel
Background. The aims of the study were to test the difference in health-related quality (HRQL) of life and survival in patients diagnosed with primary hepatocellular carcionma (HCC) and treated with either hepatic arterial infusion (HAI) of Cisplatin or 90-Yttrium microspheres (Therasphere®). Method. The design of the study was a non-randomized parallel cohort study. Twenty-eight patients participated in the present study. HRQL was assessed by administration of the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Hepatobiliary. Survival was measured using Kaplan Meier methods. Results. The results of present study suggest treatment with Therasphere® had an advantage in regard to HRQL and survival when compared to Cisplatin. At 3-month follow-up, patients who were treated with Therasphere® had a higher level of functional well-being as well as overall quality of life when compared to patients treated with Cisplatin. At 6-month follow-up patients (treated with Therasphere®) continued to have better functional well-being when compared to patients being treated with HAI of Cisplatin. At 6-month follow-up, survival was found to be similar for patients treated with Therasphere® when compared to patients being treated with Cisplatin. Conclusions. Preliminary data suggest that treatment with Therasphere® has a modest advantage in regard to HRQL when compared patients treated with HAI of Cisplatin. Future research with Therasphere®, that includes a larger sample size and longer follow-up, is necessary to make definitive conclusions regarding the efficacy and effect on HRQL. Copyright © 2003 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Development of a method for the direct analysis of peptide AM336 in monkey cerebrospinal fluid using liquid chromatography/electrospray ionization mass spectrometry with a mixed-function column

Wei Bu
A liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC/MS) analytical procedure, using a single column for sample clean-up, enrichment and separation, has been developed for the determination of the peptide AM336 in monkey cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). CSF samples were injected and analyzed using a polymer-coated mixed-function high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) column with gradient elution and application of a timed valve-switching event. The mass spectrometer was operated in the positive electrospray ionization (ESI+) mode with single ion recording (SIR) at m/z 920. The method was validated, yielding calibration curves with correlation coefficients greater than 0.9892. Assay precision and accuracy were evaluated by direct injection of AM336-fortified CSF samples at three concentration levels. Analyzed concentrations ranged from 99.93 to 113.1% of their respective theoretical concentrations with coefficients of variation below 9.0%. An evaluation of the signal-to-noise (S/N) ratio for a 200 ng/mL calibration standard, considered to be the lower limit of quantitation (LLOQ), resulted in an estimated limit of detection (LOD) of 31.2,ng/mL. Preliminary data suggest the possibility of using this method to analyze AM336 also in plasma samples, pending the successful outcome of additional investigations. Copyright © 2003 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Oxygen isotopes in nitrate: new reference materials for 18O:17O:16O measurements and observations on nitrate-water equilibration,,

J. K. Böhlke
Despite a rapidly growing literature on analytical methods and field applications of O isotope-ratio measurements of NO3, in environmental studies, there is evidence that the reported data may not be comparable because reference materials with widely varying ,18O values have not been readily available. To address this problem, we prepared large quantities of two nitrate salts with contrasting O isotopic compositions for distribution as reference materials for O isotope-ratio measurements: USGS34 (KNO3) with low ,18O and USGS35 (NaNO3) with high ,18O and ,mass-independent' ,17O. The procedure used to produce USGS34 involved equilibration of HNO3 with 18O-depleted meteoric water. Nitric acid equilibration is proposed as a simple method for producing laboratory NO3, reference materials with a range of ,18O values and normal (mass-dependent) 18O:17O:16O variation. Preliminary data indicate that the equilibrium O isotope-fractionation factor (,) between [NO3,] and H2O decreases with increasing temperature from 1.0215 at 22°C to 1.0131 at 100°C. USGS35 was purified from the nitrate ore deposits of the Atacama Desert in Chile and has a high 17O:18O ratio owing to its atmospheric origin. These new reference materials, combined with previously distributed NO3, isotopic reference materials IAEA-N3 (=IAEA-NO-3) and USGS32, can be used to calibrate local laboratory reference materials for determining offset values, scale factors, and mass-independent effects on N and O isotope-ratio measurements in a wide variety of environmental NO3, samples. Preliminary analyses yield the following results (normalized with respect to VSMOW and SLAP, with reproducibilities of ±0.2,0.3,, 1,): IAEA-N3 has ,18O,=,+25.6, and ,17O,=,+13.2,; USGS32 has ,18O,=,+25.7,; USGS34 has ,18O,=,,27.9, and ,17O,=,,14.8,; and USGS35 has ,18O,=,+57.5, and ,17O,=,+51.5,. Published in 2003 by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Using wind to power a groundwater circulation well,preliminary results

REMEDIATION, Issue 4 2004
Andrew Curtis Elmore
In areas of the country where the U.S. Department of Energy has classified the available wind resources as Class 3 or greater, the use of wind turbines to provide power to relatively small remediation systems such as groundwater circulation wells may be technically and economically feasible. Groundwater circulation wells are a good candidate technology to couple with renewable energy, because the remediation system removes contamination from the subject aquifer with no net loss of the groundwater resource, while the wind turbine does not create potentially harmful air emissions. Wind data collected in the vicinity of the former Nebraska Ordnance Plant Superfund site were used to select a wind turbine system to provide a portion of the energy necessary to power a groundwater circulation well located in an area of high trichloroethylene groundwater contamination. Because utility power was already installed at the remediation system, a 10 kW grid inter-tie wind turbine system supplements the utility system without requiring batteries for energy storage. The historical data from the site indicate that the quantity of energy purchased correlates poorly with the quantity of groundwater treated. Preliminary data from the wind turbine system indicate that the wind turbine provides more energy than the remediation system treatment components and the well submersible pump require on a monthly average. The preliminary results indicate that the coupling of wind turbines and groundwater circulation wells may be an attractive alternative in terms of the system operation time, cost savings, and contaminant mass removal. © 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. [source]

Brain oscillations forever , neurophysiology in future research of child psychiatric problems

Aribert Rothenberger
For decades neurophysiology has successfully contributed to research and clinical care in child psychiatry. Recently, methodological progress has led to a revival of interest in brain oscillations (i.e., a band of periodic neuronal frequencies with a wave-duration from milliseconds to several seconds which may code and decode information). These oscillations will nurture future information processing research during normal and pathological brain development, allowing us to investigate basic neuronal connectivity as well as interactions of brain systems and their modulation (e.g., by temporal neuronal synchronisation) as close correlates of behaviour and intermediate phenotypes from genes to behavioural variations. Especially, a systematic neurodynamic look at transitional processes from rest to stimulus-triggered goal-directed performance will aid behavioural understanding and guidance of children. Preliminary data suggest two separate oscillatory mechanisms in this respect. One is ongoing from pre- to post-stimulus processing and related to quantitative modification of behaviour, while another is merely related to qualitative effects of behaviour and reflects ,on-top' post-stimulus processing by temporal neuronal synchronisation of the oscillatory network in question. Suggested neurodynamic models may be tested in multilevel clinical experiments as well as in the framework of computational neuropsychiatry. [source]

The Impairment of Sexual Function Is Less Distressing for Menopausal than for Premenopausal Women

Marta Berra MD
ABSTRACT Introduction., Menopause requires psychological and physical adjustments because of the occurring significant hormonal changes. Sexuality is one of the aspects that undergoes the most profound modifications. Preliminary data suggest that sometimes women do not regard sexual changes as problematic and often readjust their life and relationship according to their new physical status. Aim., The aim of our study was to evaluate sexual function and the way women feel by comparing healthy postmenopausal and premenopausal women. Methods., One hundred menopausal (M) and 100 premenopausal (pM) healthy women were asked to complete anonymous questionnaires to assess sexual function and stress related to sexual activity. Main Outcome Measures., Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI), Female Sexual Distress Scale (FSDS) were completed by M and pM women. Results., Medium FSFI score was 20.5 ± 9.6 and 26.4 ± 7.7 (P < 0.0005) and medium FSDS score was 12.1 ± 11.7 (95% CI 9.7,14.4) and 11.3 ± 10.2 (P = 0.917) for M and pM women, respectively. Twenty-five of the 69 M women and 20 of the 31 pM women with a pathological score in the FSFI questionnaire scored higher than 15 in the FSDS (P < 0.0005). The overall prevalence of sexual dysfunction was 20% and 25% (P = 0.5) in the M and pM women. Conclusions., Our data confirm that menopause is associated with changes in sexual function that may be compatible with sexual dysfunction. However, personal distress caused by these changes in sexual life appears to be lower among menopausal women (36.2%) as compared with premenopausal women (64.5%). These data suggest that medical treatment for sexual health in menopause must be highly personalized and carefully prescribed. Berra M, De Musso F, Matteucci C, Martelli V, Perrone AM, Pelusi C, Pelusi G, and Meriggiola MC. The impairment of sexual function is less distressing for menopausal than for premenopausal women. J Sex Med 2010;7:1209,1215. [source]

Clinical recommendations for the use of lapatinib ditosylate plus capecitabine for patients with advanced or metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer

Raymond D SNYDER
Abstract Primary and acquired resistance to trastuzumab pose a therapeutic challenge when treating patients with HER2 (erbB-2)-positive locally advanced or metastatic breast cancer (MBC). The recent introduction of lapatinib (Tykerb/Tyverb, GlaxoSmithKline, Brentford, UK) provides a new management option for such patients. A prospective, randomized phase III clinical trial has confirmed that lapatinib in combination with capecitabine extends time to progressive disease in HER2-positive MBC, compared with capecitabine alone in patients with disease progression despite prior anthracycline, taxane and trastuzumab therapy. Preliminary data also indicate that lapatinib may exert a beneficial effect on brain metastases, a common sanctuary site for HER2-positive breast cancer following trastuzumab treatment. The tolerability of lapatinib is commensurate with that of other erbB family tyrosine kinase inhibitors and no significant new adverse events have emerged following its introduction into clinical practice. In particular, no additive cardiotoxicity has been observed when lapatinib is prescribed after trastuzumab therapy. Based on the published literature and supplemented by clinical experience, this article provides practical management recommendations for the use of lapatinib plus capecitabine in patients with MBC. Issues addressed include patient selection, baseline evaluation and monitoring for clinical benefit. The minimization and management of adverse events is also discussed in detail, particularly the dermatological and gastrointestinal effects, which are the most clinically significant side-effects of lapatinib therapy. Further recommendations cover the minimization of drug interactions, anticipated dosing alterations and the optimal employment of oral anticancer regimens. [source]