ResearchPad - soft-tissues https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Prolyl hydroxylase domain 2 reduction enhances skeletal muscle tissue regeneration after soft tissue trauma in mice]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_14698 The transcription factor Hypoxia-inducible factor 1 (HIF-1) plays a pivotal role in tissue regeneration. HIF-1 is negatively controlled by O2-dependent prolyl hydroxylases with a predominant role of prolyl hydroxylase 2 isoform (Phd2). Transgenic mice, hypomorphic for this isoform, accumulate more HIF-1 under normoxic conditions. Using these mice, we investigated the influence of Phd2 and HIF-1 on the regenerative capability of skeletal muscle tissue after myotrauma. Phd2-hypomorphic and wild type mice (on C57Bl/6 background) were grouped with regeneration times from 6 to 168 hours after closed mechanic muscle trauma to the hind limb. Tissue samples were analysed by immuno-staining and real-time PCR. Bone marrow derived macrophages of wild type and Phd2-hypomorphic mice were isolated and analysed via flow cytometry and quantitative real-time PCR. Phd2 reduction led to a higher regenerative capability due to enhanced activation of myogenic factors accompanied by induction of genes responsible for glucose and lactate metabolism in Phd2-hypomorphic mice. Macrophage infiltration into the trauma areas in hypomorphic mice started earlier and was more pronounced compared to wild type mice. Phd2-hypomorphic mice also showed higher numbers of macrophages in areas with sustained trauma 72 hours after myotrauma application. In conclusion, we postulate that the HIF-1 pathway is activated secondary to a Phd2 reduction which may lead to i) higher activation of myogenic factors, ii) increased number of positive stem cell proliferation markers, and iii) accelerated macrophage recruitment to areas of trauma, resulting in faster muscle tissue regeneration after myotrauma. With the current development of prolyl hydroxylase domain inhibitors, our findings point towards a potential clinical benefit after myotrauma.

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<![CDATA[Tissue reactions to polyethylene glycol and glutaraldehyde-based surgical sealants in a rabbit aorta model]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N96e88f01-d0b9-4764-8dda-82c08d420fc3

Surgical sealants help achieve rapid haemostasis when applied as an adjunct to sutures in vascular surgery, but their use can lead to various side effects. This study compared the local inflammatory reaction to commercially available BioGlue and Coseal sealants in a rabbit aorta suture hole model. Twenty male New Zealand white rabbits were randomised to testing with either BioGlue or Coseal. Two weeks after sealant application to suture holes, sections of the aorta at the puncture site, and surrounding tissue, were processed for histopathological analysis. Inflammation was graded from 0 to 3 according to tissue alteration and presence of inflammatory cells. Material stiffness was measured in vitro using compression testing. From examination of the inflammatory response to the sealants, a less severe histopathological assessment score was assigned to the Coseal compared to the BioGlue group (mean ± SD: 1.56 ± 0.53 vs 2.67 ± 0.50; p = 0.002). While both materials triggered a typical foreign body reaction characterised by granulomatous inflammation, BioGlue additionally provoked eosinophilic cell infiltration. Lymphocytes, plasma cells and B cells were also more prevalent in the BioGlue compared to the Coseal specimens. Coseal residue was either absent or visible in only small quantities, while significant BioGlue deposits remained in the tissue 2 weeks after application. Coseal was much more elastic than BioGlue, with a compressive modulus an order of magnitude lower (mean ± SD: 91 ± 41 vs 1833 ± 297 kPa). Compared to BioGlue, Coseal elicited a less pronounced inflammatory response in the aortic and peri-aortic tissue in this model, and demonstrated greater elasticity.

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<![CDATA[Effects of realistic sheep elbow kinematics in inverse dynamic simulation]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c8823cbd5eed0c48463901b

Looking for new opportunities in mechanical design, we are interested in studying the kinematic behaviour of biological joints. The real kinematic behaviour of the elbow of quadruped animals (which is submitted to high mechanical stresses in comparison with bipeds) remains unexplored. The sheep elbow joint was chosen because of its similarity with a revolute joint. The main objective of this study is to estimate the effects of elbow simplifications on the prediction of joint reaction forces in inverse dynamic simulations. Rigid motions between humerus and radius-ulna were registered during full flexion-extension gestures on five cadaveric specimens. The experiments were initially conducted with fresh specimens with ligaments and repeated after removal of all soft tissue, including cartilage. A digital image correlation system was used for tracking optical markers fixed on the bones. The geometry of the specimens was digitized using a 3D optical scanner. Then, the instantaneous helical axis of the joint was computed for each acquisition time. Finally, an OpenSim musculoskeletal model of the sheep forelimb was used to quantify effects of elbow joint approximations on the prediction of joint reaction forces. The motion analysis showed that only the medial-lateral translation is sufficiently large regarding the measuring uncertainty of the experiments. This translation assimilates the sheep elbow to a screw joint instead of a revolute joint. In comparison with fresh specimens, the experiments conducted with dry bone specimens (bones without soft tissue) provided different kinematic behaviour. From the results of our inverse dynamic simulations, it was noticed that the inclusion of the medial-lateral translation to the model made up with the mean flexion axis does not affect the predicted joint reaction forces. A geometrical difference between the axis of the best fitting cylinder and the mean flexion axis (derived from the motion analysis) of fresh specimens was highlighted. This geometrical difference impacts slightly the prediction of joint reactions.

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<![CDATA[Facial cues to age perception using three-dimensional analysis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6dc9add5eed0c484529fdc

To clarify cues for age perception, the three-dimensional head and face forms of Japanese women were analyzed. It is known that age-related transformations are mainly caused by changes in soft tissue during adulthood. A homologous polygon model was created by fitting template meshes to each study participant to obtain three-dimensional data for analyzing whole head and face forms. Using principal component analysis of the vertices coordinates of these models, 26 principal components were extracted (contribution ratios >0.5%), which accounted for more than 90% of the total variance. Among the principal components, five had a significant correlation with the perceived ages of the participants (p < 0.05). Transformations with these principal components in the age-related direction produced aged faces. Moreover, the older the perceived age, the larger the ratio of age-manifesting participants, namely participants who had one or more age-related principal component score greater than +1.0 σ in the age-related direction. Therefore, these five principal components were regarded as aging factors. A cluster analysis of the five aging factors revealed that all of the participants fell into one of four groups, meaning that specific combinations of factors could be used as cues for age perception in each group. These results suggest that Japanese women can be classified into four groups according to age-related transformations of soft tissue in the face.

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<![CDATA[A method for automatic forensic facial reconstruction based on dense statistics of soft tissue thickness]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c521825d5eed0c484797560

In this paper, we present a method for automated estimation of a human face given a skull remain. Our proposed method is based on three statistical models. A volumetric (tetrahedral) skull model encoding the variations of different skulls, a surface head model encoding the head variations, and a dense statistic of facial soft tissue thickness (FSTT). All data are automatically derived from computed tomography (CT) head scans and optical face scans. In order to obtain a proper dense FSTT statistic, we register a skull model to each skull extracted from a CT scan and determine the FSTT value for each vertex of the skull model towards the associated extracted skin surface. The FSTT values at predefined landmarks from our statistic are well in agreement with data from the literature. To recover a face from a skull remain, we first fit our skull model to the given skull. Next, we generate spheres with radius of the respective FSTT value obtained from our statistic at each vertex of the registered skull. Finally, we fit a head model to the union of all spheres. The proposed automated method enables a probabilistic face-estimation that facilitates forensic recovery even from incomplete skull remains. The FSTT statistic allows the generation of plausible head variants, which can be adjusted intuitively using principal component analysis. We validate our face recovery process using an anonymized head CT scan. The estimation generated from the given skull visually compares well with the skin surface extracted from the CT scan itself.

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<![CDATA[Assessment of intraductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) using grating-based X-ray phase-contrast CT at conventional X-ray sources: An experimental ex-vivo study]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c3fa5acd5eed0c484ca72b8

Background

The extent of intraductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) is commonly underestimated due to the discontinuous growth and lack of microcalcifications. Specimen radiography has been established to reduce the rate of re-excision. However, the predictive value for margin assessment with conventional specimen radiography for DCIS is low. In this study we assessed the potential of grating-based phase-contrast computed tomography (GBPC-CT) at conventional X-ray sources for specimen tomography of DCIS containing samples.

Materials and methods

GBPC-CT was performed on four ex-vivo breast specimens containing DCIS and invasive carcinoma of non-specific type. Phase-contrast and absorption-based datasets were manually matched with corresponding histological slices as the standard of reference.

Results

Matching of CT images and histology was successful. GBPC-CT showed an improved soft tissue contrast compared to absorption-based images revealing more histological details in the same sections. Non-calcifying DCIS exceeding the invasive tumor could be correlated to areas of dilated bright ducts around the tumor.

Conclusions

GBPC-CT imaging at conventional X-ray sources offers improved depiction quality for the imaging of breast tissue samples compared to absorption-based imaging, allows the identification of diagnostically relevant tissue details, and provides full three-dimensional assessment of sample margins.

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<![CDATA[Automatic classification of pediatric pneumonia based on lung ultrasound pattern recognition]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c117b51d5eed0c484698a67

Pneumonia is one of the major causes of child mortality, yet with a timely diagnosis, it is usually curable with antibiotic therapy. In many developing regions, diagnosing pneumonia remains a challenge, due to shortages of medical resources. Lung ultrasound has proved to be a useful tool to detect lung consolidation as evidence of pneumonia. However, diagnosis of pneumonia by ultrasound has limitations: it is operator-dependent, and it needs to be carried out and interpreted by trained personnel. Pattern recognition and image analysis is a potential tool to enable automatic diagnosis of pneumonia consolidation without requiring an expert analyst. This paper presents a method for automatic classification of pneumonia using ultrasound imaging of the lungs and pattern recognition. The approach presented here is based on the analysis of brightness distribution patterns present in rectangular segments (here called “characteristic vectors“) from the ultrasound digital images. In a first step we identified and eliminated the skin and subcutaneous tissue (fat and muscle) in lung ultrasound frames, and the “characteristic vectors”were analyzed using standard neural networks using artificial intelligence methods. We analyzed 60 lung ultrasound frames corresponding to 21 children under age 5 years (15 children with confirmed pneumonia by clinical examination and X-rays, and 6 children with no pulmonary disease) from a hospital based population in Lima, Peru. Lung ultrasound images were obtained using an Ultrasonix ultrasound device. A total of 1450 positive (pneumonia) and 1605 negative (normal lung) vectors were analyzed with standard neural networks, and used to create an algorithm to differentiate lung infiltrates from healthy lung. A neural network was trained using the algorithm and it was able to correctly identify pneumonia infiltrates, with 90.9% sensitivity and 100% specificity. This approach may be used to develop operator-independent computer algorithms for pneumonia diagnosis using ultrasound in young children.

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<![CDATA[Viscoelastic parameters as discriminators of breast masses: Initial human study results]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5bca48d540307c0516656413

Shear wave elastography is emerging as a clinically valuable diagnostic tool to differentiate between benign and malignant breast masses. Elastography techniques assume that soft tissue can be modelled as a purely elastic medium. However, this assumption is often violated as soft tissue exhibits viscoelastic properties. In order to explore the role of viscoelastic parameters in suspicious breast masses, a study was conducted on a group of patients using shear wave dispersion ultrasound vibrometry in the frequency range of 50–400 Hz. A total of 43 female patients with suspicious breast masses were recruited before their scheduled biopsy. Of those, 15 patients did not meet the data selection criteria. Voigt model based shear elasticity showed a significantly (p = 7.88x10-6) higher median value for the 13 malignant masses (16.76±13.10 kPa) compared to 15 benign masses (1.40±1.12 kPa). Voigt model based shear viscosity was significantly different (p = 4.13x10-5) between malignant (8.22±3.36 Pa-s) and benign masses (2.83±1.47 Pa-s). Moreover, the estimated time constant from the Voigt model, which is dependent on both shear elasticity and viscosity, differed significantly (p = 6.13x10-5) between malignant (0.68±0.33 ms) and benign masses (3.05±1.95 ms). Results suggest that besides elasticity, viscosity based parameters like shear viscosity and time constant can also be used to differentiate between malignant and benign breast masses.

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<![CDATA[Imaging of Scleral Collagen Deformation Using Combined Confocal Raman Microspectroscopy and Polarized Light Microscopy Techniques]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9e7ab0ee8fa60b6bb88

This work presents an optospectroscopic characterization technique for soft tissue microstructure using site-matched confocal Raman microspectroscopy and polarized light microscopy. Using the technique, the microstructure of soft tissue samples is directly observed by polarized light microscopy during loading while spatially correlated spectroscopic information is extracted from the same plane, verifying the orientation and arrangement of the collagen fibers. Results show the response and orientation of the collagen fiber arrangement in its native state as well as during tensile and compressive loadings in a porcine sclera model. An example is also given showing how the data can be used with a finite element program to estimate the strain in individual collagen fibers. The measurements demonstrate features that indicate microstructural reorganization and damage of the sclera’s collagen fiber arrangement under loading. The site-matched confocal Raman microspectroscopic characterization of the tissue provides a qualitative measure to relate the change in fibrillar arrangement with possible chemical damage to the collagen microstructure. Tests and analyses presented here can potentially be used to determine the stress-strain behavior, and fiber reorganization of the collagen microstructure in soft tissue during viscoelastic response.

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<![CDATA[A Finite Element Model for Mixed Porohyperelasticity with Transport, Swelling, and Growth]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db39ab0ee8fa60bd40e9

The purpose of this manuscript is to establish a unified theory of porohyperelasticity with transport and growth and to demonstrate the capability of this theory using a finite element model developed in MATLAB. We combine the theories of volumetric growth and mixed porohyperelasticity with transport and swelling (MPHETS) to derive a new method that models growth of biological soft tissues. The conservation equations and constitutive equations are developed for both solid-only growth and solid/fluid growth. An axisymmetric finite element framework is introduced for the new theory of growing MPHETS (GMPHETS). To illustrate the capabilities of this model, several example finite element test problems are considered using model geometry and material parameters based on experimental data from a porcine coronary artery. Multiple growth laws are considered, including time-driven, concentration-driven, and stress-driven growth. Time-driven growth is compared against an exact analytical solution to validate the model. For concentration-dependent growth, changing the diffusivity (representing a change in drug) fundamentally changes growth behavior. We further demonstrate that for stress-dependent, solid-only growth of an artery, growth of an MPHETS model results in a more uniform hoop stress than growth in a hyperelastic model for the same amount of growth time using the same growth law. This may have implications in the context of developing residual stresses in soft tissues under intraluminal pressure. To our knowledge, this manuscript provides the first full description of an MPHETS model with growth. The developed computational framework can be used in concert with novel in-vitro and in-vivo experimental approaches to identify the governing growth laws for various soft tissues.

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<![CDATA[Evaluation of stiffness feedback for hard nodule identification on a phantom silicone model]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db4fab0ee8fa60bdbc2f

Haptic information in robotic surgery can significantly improve clinical outcomes and help detect hard soft-tissue inclusions that indicate potential abnormalities. Visual representation of tissue stiffness information is a cost-effective technique. Meanwhile, direct force feedback, although considerably more expensive than visual representation, is an intuitive method of conveying information regarding tissue stiffness to surgeons. In this study, real-time visual stiffness feedback by sliding indentation palpation is proposed, validated, and compared with force feedback involving human subjects. In an experimental tele-manipulation environment, a dynamically updated color map depicting the stiffness of probed soft tissue is presented via a graphical interface. The force feedback is provided, aided by a master haptic device. The haptic device uses data acquired from an F/T sensor attached to the end-effector of a tele-manipulated robot. Hard nodule detection performance is evaluated for 2 modes (force feedback and visual stiffness feedback) of stiffness feedback on an artificial organ containing buried stiff nodules. From this artificial organ, a virtual-environment tissue model is generated based on sliding indentation measurements. Employing this virtual-environment tissue model, we compare the performance of human participants in distinguishing differently sized hard nodules by force feedback and visual stiffness feedback. Results indicate that the proposed distributed visual representation of tissue stiffness can be used effectively for hard nodule identification. The representation can also be used as a sufficient substitute for force feedback in tissue palpation.

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<![CDATA[Individual and Combined Expression of DNA Damage Response Molecules PARP1, γH2AX, BRCA1, and BRCA2 Predict Shorter Survival of Soft Tissue Sarcoma Patients]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989daddab0ee8fa60bbaabf

DNA damage response (DDR) molecules are protective against genotoxic stresses. DDR molecules are also involved in the survival of cancer cells in patients undergoing anti-cancer therapies. Therefore, DDR molecules are potential markers of cancer progression in addition to being potential therapeutic targets. In this study, we evaluated the immunohistochemical expression of PARP1, γH2AX, BRCA1, and BRCA2 and their prognostic significance in 112 cases of soft tissue sarcoma (STS). The expression of PARP1, γH2AX, BRCA1, and BRCA2 were significantly associated with each other and were associated with higher tumor stage and presence of distant metastasis. The expression of PARP1, γH2AX, and BRCA2 were significantly associated with shorter disease-specific survival (DSS) and event-free survival (EFS) by univariate analysis. BRCA1 expression was associated with shorter DSS. Multivariate analysis revealed the expression of PARP1 and γH2AX to be independent indicators of poor prognosis of DSS and EFS. BRCA2 expression was an independent indicator of poor prognosis of DSS. In addition, the combined expressional patterns of PARP1, γH2AX, BRCA1, and BRCA2 (CSddrm) were independent prognostic predictors of DSS (P < 0.001) and EFS (P = 0.016). The ten-year DSS rate of the CSddrm-low, CSddrm-intermediate, and CSddrm-high subgroups were 81%, 26%, and 0%, respectively. In conclusion, this study demonstrates that the individual and combined expression patterns of the DDR molecules PARP1, γH2AX, BRCA1, and BRCA2 could be predictive of the prognosis of STS patients and suggests that controlling the activity of these DDR molecules could be employed in new therapeutic stratagems for the treatment of STS.

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<![CDATA[The Oropharyngeal Airway in Young Adults with Skeletal Class II and Class III Deformities: A 3-D Morphometric Analysis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dab5ab0ee8fa60bac959

Objectives

1) To determine the accuracy and reliability of an automated anthropometric measurement software for the oropharyngeal airway and 2) To compare the anthropometric dimensions of the oropharyngeal airway in skeletal class II and III deformity patients.

Methods

Cone-beam CT (CBCT) scans of 62 patients with skeletal class II or III deformities were used for this study. Volumetric, linear and surface area measurements retroglossal (RG) and retropalatal (RP) compartments of the oropharyngeal airway was measured with the 3dMDVultus software. Accuracy of automated anthropometric pharyngeal airway measurements was assessed using an airway phantom.

Results

The software was found to be reasonably accurate for measuring dimensions of air passages. The total oropharyngeal volume was significantly greater in the skeletal class III deformity group (16.7 ± 9.04 mm3) compared with class II subjects (11.87 ± 4.01 mm3). The average surface area of both the RG and RP compartments were significantly larger in the class III deformity group. The most constricted area in the RG and RP airway was significantly larger in individuals with skeletal class III deformity. The anterior-posterior (AP) length of this constriction was significantly greater in skeletal class III individuals in both compartments, whereas the width of the constriction was not significantly different between the two groups in both compartments. The RP compartment was larger but less uniform than the RG compartment in both skeletal deformities.

Conclusion

Significant differences were observed in morphological characteristics of the oropharyngeal airway in individuals with skeletal class II and III deformities. This information may be valuable for surgeons in orthognathic treatment planning, especially for mandibular setback surgery that might compromise the oropharyngeal patency.

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<![CDATA[Oncological and surgical outcome after treatment of pelvic sarcomas]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db52ab0ee8fa60bdc63b

Background and objectives

Treatment of pelvic tumors remains challenging due to complex anatomy, poor oncological outcome and high complication rates. We sought to investigate the long-term oncological and surgical outcome of these patients.

Methods

Between 1980 and 2012, 147 patients underwent surgical treatment for pelvic sarcoma. Histological diagnosis was Chondrosarcoma in 54, Ewing’s Sarcoma/PNET in 37, Osterosarcoma in 32 and others in 24 patients. Statistical analysis for the evaluation of oncological and surgical outcome was performed by applying Cox proportional hazards regression and Fine-Gray regression models for competing risk (CR) endpoints.

Results

The estimated overall survival (OS) to death was 80%, 45% and 37% at 1, 5 and 10 years, respectively. Univariate analyses revealed a statistically significant unadjusted influence of age age (p = 0.038; HR = 1.01), margin (p = 0.043; HR = 0.51) and grade (p = 0.001; HR = 2.27) on OS. Considering the multivariable model, grade (p = 0.005; HR = 3.04) and tumor volume (p = 0.014; HR = 1.18) presented themselves as independent prognostic factors on OS. CR analysis showed a cumulative incidence for major complication of 31% at 5 years. Endoprosthetic reconstruction had a higher risk for experiencing a major complication (p<0.0001) and infection (p = 0.001).

Conclusions

Pelvic resections are still associated with a high incidence of complications. Patients with pelvic reconstruction and high volume tumors are especially at risk. Consequently, a cautious decision-making process is necessary when indicating pelvic reconstruction, although a restrictive approach to pelvic reconstruction is not necessarily reasonable when the other option is major amputation.

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<![CDATA[Practical Application of Anatomy of the Oral Cavity in Forensic Facial Reconstruction]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da8bab0ee8fa60b9e277

The oral cavity’s importance in defining the facial region makes it a primary feature for forensic facial reconstruction (FFR). The aim of this study is to construct a pattern of reference for dimensions and proportions of the lips and establish parameters that may help estimate the vermilion borders’ height dimensions and the mouth’s width. By means of cone beam computed tomography, divided into two samples: sample 1 (n = 322; 137 male, 185 female) verified the linear distances delimited by anatomical landmarks in soft tissue. The sample 2 (n = 108; 40 male, 68 female), verified the proportions among the height of the vermilion borders, width of the mouth, and linear distances between craniometric landmarks in hard tissues, both from a Brazilian database. The measurements were completed using OsiriX, and the results were analyzed by means of descriptive statistics at a level of significance of 5%. The height of the vermilion borders corresponded to approximately 26% of the width of the mouth. The width of the mouth increased over the course of time in men and remained stable in women. In men, a mean intercanine distance of 75% of the total mouth’s width was found; for women, it was 80%. The parameters of the relations between soft and hard tissues in the oral cavity region presented that the distance between landmarks ID-SM (Infradentale-Supramentale) corresponded to 55% of the height of the vermilion borders of the mouth for both sexes, while the distance between landmarks PM-SD (Philtrum medium-Supradentale) corresponded to 85% in men and 88% in women. Mean values of 97% of the width of the mouth in women and 93% in men were attributed to the distance between the mentonian foramina. It was not possible to estimate the height of the labial vermilion borders by the bone measurements, FIs-Fli (Foramen incisivus superius-inferius) and NS-GN (Nasospinale-Gnathion). Profound knowledge of the anatomy and morphology of the oral cavity may contribute to increasing the precision of FFRs and help with human identification.

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<![CDATA[Madurella mycetomatis-Induced Massive Shoulder Joint Destruction: A Management Challenge]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dadbab0ee8fa60bb9c94 ]]> <![CDATA[Queen Nefertari, the Royal Spouse of Pharaoh Ramses II: A Multidisciplinary Investigation of the Mummified Remains Found in Her Tomb (QV66)]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da2cab0ee8fa60b82d5c

Queen Nefertari, the favourite Royal Consort of Pharaoh Ramses II (Ancient Egypt, New Kingdom, 19th Dynasty c. 1250 BC) is famous for her beautifully decorated tomb in the Valley of the Queens. Her burial was plundered in ancient times yet still many objects were found broken in the debris when the tomb was excavated. Amongst the found objects was a pair of mummified legs. They came to the Egyptian Museum in Turin and are henceforth regarded as the remains of this famous Queen, although they were never scientifically investigated. The following multidisciplinary investigation is the first ever performed on those remains. The results (radiocarbon dating, anthropology, paleopathology, genetics, chemistry and Egyptology) all strongly speak in favour of an identification of the remains as Nefertari’s, although different explanations—albeit less likely—are considered and discussed. The legs probably belong to a lady, a fully adult individual, of about 40 years of age. The materials used for embalming are consistent with Ramesside mummification traditions and indeed all objects within the tomb robustly support the burial as of Queen Nefertari.

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<![CDATA[Morphological Computation of Haptic Perception of a Controllable Stiffness Probe]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db48ab0ee8fa60bd96cb

When people are asked to palpate a novel soft object to discern its physical properties such as texture, elasticity, and even non-homogeneity, they not only regulate probing behaviors, but also the co-contraction level of antagonistic muscles to control the mechanical impedance of fingers. It is suspected that such behavior tries to enhance haptic perception by regulating the function of mechanoreceptors at different depths of the fingertips and proprioceptive sensors such as tendon and spindle sensors located in muscles. In this paper, we designed and fabricated a novel two-degree of freedom variable stiffness indentation probe to investigate whether the regulation of internal stiffness, indentation, and probe sweeping velocity (PSV) variables affect the accuracy of the depth estimation of stiff inclusions in an artificial silicon phantom using information gain metrics. Our experimental results provide new insights into not only the biological phenomena of haptic perception but also new opportunities to design and control soft robotic probes.

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<![CDATA[Efficacy and safety of gemcitabine plus docetaxel in Japanese patients with unresectable or recurrent bone and soft tissue sarcoma: Results from a single-institutional analysis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db5aab0ee8fa60bdf6bb

Background

Combination therapy with gemcitabine and docetaxel has been reported to be a good therapeutic strategy for patients with soft tissue sarcoma. The aim of the present study was to analyze the efficacy and toxicity of gemcitabine with docetaxel in Japanese patients with advanced bone and soft tissue sarcoma.

Patients and methods

We retrospectively analyzed the effect of gemcitabine and docetaxel therapy on overall response, progression-free survival, overall survival, and toxicity in 42 patients with bone or soft tissue sarcoma who had received the therapy between October 2006 and September 2015, at Tohoku University Hospital.

Results

The median age was 55 years; 23 patients were men, and 19 were women. Eight had bone sarcoma and 34 had soft tissue sarcoma. Forty patients (95%) had previously been treated with one or more chemotherapeutic regimens. The overall response rate was 6.9% and the disease control rate was 55%. The median progression-free survival was 2.3 months and the median overall survival was 14.3 months. Grade 3 or more neutropenia and febrile neutropenia were observed in 74% and 4.8% of all patients, respectively.

Conclusion

The response rate was lower and myelosuppression was more frequently observed than in other previous reports. On the other hand, most of toxicities were enough manageable. In addition, some patients had long survival with a good response. Our study supports the notion that gemcitabine and docetaxel therapy is a good therapeutic option for treating patients with advanced soft tissue sarcoma as well as bone sarcoma, also in Asian populations.

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<![CDATA[GATA3 Expression Is a Poor Prognostic Factor in Soft Tissue Sarcomas]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db32ab0ee8fa60bd225a

Objective

Recent studies have investigated the significance of GATA3 expression in patients with various malignant tumors. However, no previous studies have evaluated the clinicopathological importance of GATA3 expression in soft tissue sarcomas (STS) patients.

Methods

We evaluated GATA3 expression in 76 STS cases using immunohistochemical analysis, and statistically compared clinicopathological characteristics between GATA3-positive and GATA3-negative cases.

Result

GATA3-positive expression was significantly associated with a higher mitotic count (P < 0.0001). Disease-free survival (DFS) of GATA3-positive cases was significantly shorter than that of cases without GATA3 expression (P = 0.0104). Overall survival (OS) of GATA3-positive cases was significantly shorter than that of cases without GATA3 expression (P = 0.0006). GATA3-positive expression was significantly associated with shorter DFS in both univariate analysis (hazard ratio [HR], 2.719; P = 0.012) and multivariate analysis (HR, 2.711; P = 0.014). GATA3-positive expression was also significantly associated with worse OS in both univariate analysis (HR, 5.730; P = 0.0007) and multivariate analysis (HR, 5.789; P = 0.0008).

Conclusion

These results indicate that GATA3 is an independent prognostic factor and suggest that evaluation of GATA3 expression might enable more effective clinical follow-up using prognostic stratification of STS patients.

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