ResearchPad - translational-medicine https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Hesperidin depolarizes the pacemaker potentials through 5-HT<sub>4</sub> receptor in murine small intestinal interstitial cells of Cajal]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_15187 Hesperidin, a citrus flavonoid, can exert numerous beneficial effects on human health. Interstitial cells of Cajal (ICC) are pacemaker cells in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. In the present study, we investigated potential effects of hesperidin on pacemaker potential of ICC in murine small intestine and GI motility. A whole-cell patch-clamp configuration was used to record pacemaker potential in ICC, and GI motility was investigated in vivo by recording gastric emptying (GE) and intestinal transit rate (ITR). Hesperidin depolarized pacemaker potentials of ICC in a dose-dependent manner. Pre-treatment with methoctramine or 4-DAMP did not inhibit hesperidin-induced pacemaker potential depolarization. Neither a 5-HT3 receptor antagonist (Y25130) nor a 5-HT7 receptor antagonist (SB269970) reduced the effect of hesperidin on ICC pacemaker potential, whereas the 5-HT4 receptor antagonist RS39604 was found to inhibit this effect. In the presence of GDP–β–S, hesperidin-induced pacemaker potential depolarization was inhibited. Moreover, in the presence of U73122 and calphostin C, hesperidin did not depolarize pacemaker potentials. Furthermore, hesperidin accelerated GE and ITR in vivo. These results imply that hesperidin depolarized ICC pacemaker potential via 5-HT4 receptors, G protein, and PLC/PKC dependent pathways and that it increased GI motility. Therefore, hesperidin may be a promising novel drug to regulate GI motility.

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<![CDATA[Bi-Level ventilation decreases pulmonary shunt and modulates neuroinflammation in a cardiopulmonary resuscitation model]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Nfc29e3d5-af29-453c-bdc8-d5378300b77b

Background

Optimal ventilation strategies during cardiopulmonary resuscitation are still heavily debated and poorly understood. So far, no convincing evidence could be presented in favour of outcome relevance and necessity of specific ventilation patterns. In recent years, alternative models to the guideline-based intermittent positive pressure ventilation (IPPV) have been proposed. In this randomized controlled trial, we evaluated a bi-level ventilation approach in a porcine model to assess possible physiological advantages for the pulmonary system as well as resulting changes in neuroinflammation compared to standard measures.

Methods

Sixteen male German landrace pigs were anesthetized and instrumented with arterial and venous catheters. Ventricular fibrillation was induced and the animals were left untreated and without ventilation for 4 minutes. After randomization, the animals were assigned to either the guideline-based group (IPPV, tidal volume 8–10 ml/kg, respiratory rate 10/min, FiO21.0) or the bi-level group (inspiratory pressure levels 15–17 cmH2O/5cmH2O, respiratory rate 10/min, FiO21.0). Mechanical chest compressions and interventional ventilation were initiated and after 5 minutes, blood samples, including ventilation/perfusion measurements via multiple inert gas elimination technique, were taken. After 8 minutes, advanced life support including adrenaline administration and defibrillations were started for up to 4 cycles. Animals achieving ROSC were monitored for 6 hours and lungs and brain tissue were harvested for further analyses.

Results

Five of the IPPV and four of the bi-level animals achieved ROSC. While there were no significant differences in gas exchange or hemodynamic values, bi-level treated animals showed less pulmonary shunt directly after ROSC and a tendency to lower inspiratory pressures during CPR. Additionally, cytokine expression of tumour necrosis factor alpha was significantly reduced in hippocampal tissue compared to IPPV animals.

Conclusion

Bi-level ventilation with a constant positive end expiratory pressure and pressure-controlled ventilation is not inferior in terms of oxygenation and decarboxylation when compared to guideline-based IPPV ventilation. Additionally, bi-level ventilation showed signs for a potentially ameliorated neurological outcome as well as less pulmonary shunt following experimental resuscitation. Given the restrictions of the animal model, these advantages should be further examined.

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<![CDATA[Integrative analysis of dysregulated lncRNA-associated ceRNA network reveals potential lncRNA biomarkers for human hepatocellular carcinoma]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Nbefbdee0-3f34-4b48-86f3-7ca275dff284

Background

Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is an aggressive cancer with a poor prognosis and a high incidence. The molecular changes and novel biomarkers of HCC need to be identified to improve the diagnosis and prognosis of this disease. We investigated the current research concentrations of HCC and identified the transcriptomics-related biomarkers of HCC from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TGCA) database.

Methods

We investigated the current research concentrations of HCC using literature metrology analysis for studies conducted from 2008 to 2018. We identified long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) that correlated with the clinical features and survival prognoses of HCC from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TGCA) database. Differentially expressed genes (lncRNAs, miRNAs, and mRNAs) were also identified by TCGA datasets in HCC tumor tissues. A lncRNA competitive endogenous RNA (ceRNA) network was constructed from lncRNAs based on intersected lncRNAs. Survival times and the association between the expression levels of the key lncRNAs of the ceRNA network and the clinicopathological characteristics of HCC patients were analyzed using TCGA. Real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) was used to validate the reliability of the results in tissue samples from 20 newly-diagnosed HCC patients.

Results

Analysis of the literature pertaining to HCC research revealed that current research is focused on lncRNA functions in tumorigenesis and tumor development. A total of 128 HCC dysregulated lncRNAs were identified; 66 were included in the co-expressed ceRNA network. We analyzed survival times and the associations between the expression of 66 key lncRNAs and the clinicopathological features of the HCC patients identified from TCGA. Twenty-six lncRNAs were associated with clinical features of HCC (P < 0.05) and six key lncRNAs were associated with survival time (log-rank test P < 0.05). Six key lncRNAs were selected for the validation of their expression levels in 20 patients with newly diagnosed HCC using qRT-PCR. Consistent fold changes in the trends of up and down regulation between qRT-PCR validation and TCGA proved the reliability of our bioinformatics analysis.

Conclusions

We used integrative bioinformatics analysis of the TCGA datasets to improve our understanding of the regulatory mechanisms involved with the functional features of lncRNAs in HCC. The results revealed that lncRNAs are potential diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers of HCC.

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<![CDATA[A comparative study of machine learning algorithms for predicting acute kidney injury after liver cancer resection]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N40658ae4-5430-4040-9387-c10cda132cde

Objective

Machine learning methods may have better or comparable predictive ability than traditional analysis. We explore machine learning methods to predict the likelihood of acute kidney injury after liver cancer resection.

Methods

This is a secondary analysis cohort study. We reviewed data from patients who had undergone resection of primary hepatocellular carcinoma between January 2008 and October 2015.

Results

The analysis included 1,173 hepatectomy patients, 77 (6.6%) of whom had AKI and 1,096 (93.4%) who did not. The importance matrix for the Gbdt algorithm model shows that age, cholesterol, tumor size, surgery duration and PLT were the five most important parameters. Figure 1 shows that Age, tumor size and surgery duration had weak positive correlations with AKI. Cholesterol and PLT also had weak negative correlations with AKI. The models constructed by the four machine learning algorithms in the training group were compared. Among the four machine learning algorithms, random forest and gbm had the highest accuracy, 0.989 and 0.970 respectively. The precision of four of the five algorithms was 1, random forest being the exception. Among the test group, gbm had the highest accuracy (0.932). Random forest and gbm had the highest precision, both being 0.333. The AUC values for the four algorithms were: Gbdt (0.772), gbm (0.725), forest (0.662) and DecisionTree (0.628).

Conclusions

Machine learning technology can predict acute kidney injury after hepatectomy. Age, cholesterol, tumor size, surgery duration and PLT influence the likelihood and development of postoperative acute kidney injury.

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<![CDATA[Moderation effects of food intake on the relationship between urinary microbiota and urinary interleukin-8 in female type 2 diabetic patients]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Ne4765de9-81ac-4eca-9ceb-240d484e750d

Background

Our previous study demonstrated that the composition of the urinary microbiota in female patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) was correlated with the concentration of urinary interleukin (IL)-8. As the composition of urine is mainly determined by diet, diet might mediate the correlation.

Methods

Seventy female T2DM patients and 70 healthy controls (HCs) were recruited. Midstream urine was used for the urine specimens. Urinary IL-8 was determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. A Chinese Food Frequency Questionnaire was used to collect food intake data. The independent variables in the hierarchical regression analysis were the relative abundances of the bacterial genera and species that were significantly different between the T2DM and HCs and between the T2DM patients with and without detectable urinary IL-8, and the bacterial genera associated with IL-8 concentration in the multiple regression model reported in our previous research. IL-8 concentration was the dependent variable, and nutrient intakes were moderator variables.

Results

Fiber and vitamin B3 and E intake exerted enhancing effects, and water intake exerted a buffering effect, on the positive relationship between the relative abundance of Ruminococcus and IL-8 concentration (p < 0.05). Cholesterol and magnesium intake exerted enhancing effects on the positive relationship between the relative abundance of Comamonas and IL-8 concentration (p < 0.05).

Conclusion

Modulating T2DM patients’ dietary patterns may prevent bladder inflammation.

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<![CDATA[A Novel G Protein–Biased Agonist at the δ Opioid Receptor with Analgesic Efficacy in Models of Chronic Pain]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Ndbf44d9a-3acc-48a2-b199-860a528a7685

Agonists at the δ opioid receptor are known to be potent antihyperalgesics in chronic pain models and effective in models of anxiety and depression. However, some δ opioid agonists have proconvulsant properties while tolerance to the therapeutic effects can develop. Previous evidence indicates that different agonists acting at the δ opioid receptor differentially engage signaling and regulatory pathways with significant effects on behavioral outcomes. As such, interest is now growing in the development of biased agonists as a potential means to target specific signaling pathways and potentially improve the therapeutic profile of δ opioid agonists. Here, we report on PN6047 (3-[[4-(dimethylcarbamoyl)phenyl]-[1-(thiazol-5-ylmethyl)-4-piperidylidene]methyl]benzamide), a novel G protein–biased and selective δ opioid agonist. In cell-based assays, PN6047 fully engages G protein signaling but is a partial agonist in both the arrestin recruitment and internalization assays. PN6047 is effective in rodent models of chronic pain but shows no detectable analgesic tolerance following prolonged treatment. In addition, PN6047 exhibited antidepressant-like activity in the forced swim test, and importantly, the drug had no effect on chemically induced seizures. PN6047 did not exhibit reward-like properties in the conditioned place preference test or induce respiratory depression. Thus, δ opioid ligands with limited arrestin signaling such as PN6047 may be therapeutically beneficial in the treatment of chronic pain states.

SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT

PN6047 (3-[[4-(dimethylcarbamoyl)phenyl]-[1-(thiazol-5-ylmethyl)-4-piperidylidene]methyl]benzamide) is a selective, G protein–biased δ opioid agonist with efficacy in preclinical models of chronic pain. No analgesic tolerance was observed after prolonged treatment, and PN6047 does not display proconvulsant activity or other opioid-mediated adverse effects. Our data suggest that δ opioid ligands with limited arrestin signaling will be beneficial in the treatment of chronic pain.

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<![CDATA[Toward a clinical real time tissue ablation technology: combining electroporation and electrolysis (E2)]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N19046824-e691-40f7-8e19-29152e4b4488

Background

Percutaneous image-guided tissue ablation (IGA) plays a growing role in the clinical management of solid malignancies. Electroporation is used for IGA in several modalities: irreversible electroporation (IRE), and reversible electroporation with chemotoxic drugs, called electrochemotherapy (ECT). It was shown that the combination of electrolysis and electroporation—E2—affords tissue ablation with greater efficiency, that is, lower voltages, lower energy and shorter procedure times than IRE and without the need for chemotoxic additives as in ECT.

Methods

A new E2 waveform was designed that delivers optimal doses of electroporation and electrolysis in a single waveform. A series of experiments were performed in the liver of pigs to evaluate E2 in the context of clinical applications. The goal was to find initial parameter boundaries in terms of electrical field, pulse duration and charge as well as tissue behavior to enable real time tissue ablation of clinically relevant volumes.

Results

Histological results show that a single several hundred millisecond long E2 waveform can ablate large volume of tissue at relatively low voltages while preserving the integrity of large blood vessels and lumen structures in the ablation zone without the use of chemotoxic drugs or paralyzing drugs during anesthesia. This could translate clinically into much shorter treatment times and ease of use compared to other techniques that are currently applied.

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<![CDATA[A prospective randomized trial examining health care utilization in individuals using multiple smartphone-enabled biosensors]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db45ab0ee8fa60bd8263

Background. Mobile health and digital medicine technologies are becoming increasingly used by individuals with common, chronic diseases to monitor their health. Numerous devices, sensors, and apps are available to patients and consumers–some of which have been shown to lead to improved health management and health outcomes. However, no randomized controlled trials have been conducted which examine health care costs, and most have failed to provide study participants with a truly comprehensive monitoring system. Methods. We conducted a prospective randomized controlled trial of adults who had submitted a 2012 health insurance claim associated with hypertension, diabetes, and/or cardiac arrhythmia. The intervention involved receipt of one or more mobile devices that corresponded to their condition(s) (hypertension: Withings Blood Pressure Monitor; diabetes: Sanofi iBGStar Blood Glucose Meter; arrhythmia: AliveCor Mobile ECG) and an iPhone with linked tracking applications for a period of 6 months; the control group received a standard disease management program. Moreover, intervention study participants received access to an online health management system which provided participants detailed device tracking information over the course of the study. This was a monitoring system designed by leveraging collaborations with device manufacturers, a connected health leader, health care provider, and employee wellness program–making it both unique and inclusive. We hypothesized that health resource utilization with respect to health insurance claims may be influenced by the monitoring intervention. We also examined health-self management. Results & Conclusions. There was little evidence of differences in health care costs or utilization as a result of the intervention. Furthermore, we found evidence that the control and intervention groups were equivalent with respect to most health care utilization outcomes. This result suggests there are not large short-term increases or decreases in health care costs or utilization associated with monitoring chronic health conditions using mobile health or digital medicine technologies. Among secondary outcomes there was some evidence of improvement in health self-management which was characterized by a decrease in the propensity to view health status as due to chance factors in the intervention group.

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<![CDATA[Platelet-rich concentrate in serum free medium enhances osteogenic differentiation of bone marrow-derived human mesenchymal stromal cells]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db47ab0ee8fa60bd8e3f

Previous studies have shown that platelet concentrates used in conjunction with appropriate growth media enhance osteogenic differentiation of human mesenchymal stromal cells (hMSCs). However, their potential in inducing osteogenesis of hMSCs when cultured in serum free medium has not been explored. Furthermore, the resulting osteogenic molecular signatures of the hMSCs have not been compared to standard osteogenic medium. We studied the effect of infrequent supplementation (8-day interval) of 15% non-activated platelet-rich concentrate (PRC) in serum free medium on hMSCs proliferation and differentiation throughout a course of 24 days, and compared the effect with those cultured in a standard osteogenic medium (OM). Cell proliferation was analyzed by alamar blue assay. Gene expression of osteogenic markers (Runx2, Collagen1, Alkaline Phosphatase, Bone morphogenetic protein 2, Osteopontin, Osteocalcin, Osteonectin) were analyzed using Q-PCR. Immunocytochemical staining for osteocalcin, osteopontin and transcription factor Runx2 were done at 8, 16 and 24 days. Biochemical assays for the expression of ALP and osteocalcin were also performed at these time-points. Osteogenic differentiation was further confirmed qualitatively by Alizarin Red S staining that was quantified using cetylpyridinium chloride. Results showed that PRC supplemented in serum free medium enhanced hMSC proliferation, which peaked at day 16. The temporal pattern of gene expression of hMSCs under the influence of PRC was comparable to that of the osteogenic media, but at a greater extent at specific time points. Immunocytochemical staining revealed stronger staining for Runx2 in the PRC-treated group compared to OM, while the staining for Osteocalcin and Osteopontin were comparable in both groups. ALP activity and Osteocalcin/DNA level were higher in the PRC group. Cells in the PRC group had similar level of bone mineralization as those cultured in OM, as reflected by the intensity of Alizarin red stain. Collectively, these results demonstrate a great potential of PRC alone in inducing proliferation of hMSCs without any influence from other lineage-specific growth media. PRC alone has similar capacity to enhance hMSC osteogenic differentiation as a standard OM, without changing the temporal profile of the differentiation process. Thus, PRC could be used as a substitute medium to provide sufficient pool of pre-differentiated hMSCs for potential clinical application in bone regeneration.

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<![CDATA[Inductive heating kills cells that contribute to plaque: a proof-of-concept]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db0dab0ee8fa60bcafda

Inducing cell death by heating targeted particles shows promise in cancer treatment. Here, we aim to demonstrate the feasibility of extending the use of this technique to treat and remove vascular deposits and thrombosis. We used induction heating of macrophages, which are key contributors to atherosclerosis and have demonstrated clear feasibility for heating and destroying these cells using ferromagnetic and pure iron particles. Specifically, iron particles achieved maximum temperatures of 51 ± 0.5 °C and spherical particles achieved a maximum temperature of 43.9 ± 0.2 °C (N = 6) after 30 min of inductive heating. Two days of subsequent observation demonstrated that inductive heating led to a significant reduction in cell number. Prior to induction heating, cell density was 105,000 ± 20,820 cells/ml (N = 3). This number was reduced to 6,666 ± 4,410 cells/ml for the spherical particles and 16,666 ± 9,280 cells/ml for the iron particles 24 h after inductive heating. Though cell density increased on the second day following inductive heating, the growth was minimal. Cells grew to 26,667 ± 6,670 cells/ml and 30,000 ± 15,280 cells/ml respectively. Compared to cell cultures with iron and spherical particles that were not subjected to induction heating, we observed a 97% reduction in cell count for the spherical particles and a 91% reduction for the iron particles after the first 24 h. After 48 h we observed a 95% reduction in cell growth for both spherical and iron particles. Induction heating of microparticles was thus highly effective in reducing the macrophage population and preventing their growth. These results demonstrate the feasibility of targeting cells involved in atherosclerosis and warrant further research into potential clinical applications.

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<![CDATA[Evaluation of transport conditions for autologous bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stromal cells for therapeutic application in horses]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da1aab0ee8fa60b7c5ae

Background. Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) are increasingly used for clinical applications in equine patients. For MSC isolation and expansion, a laboratory step is mandatory, after which the cells are sent back to the attending veterinarian. Preserving the biological properties of MSCs during this transport is paramount. The goal of the study was to compare transport-related parameters (transport container, media, temperature, time, cell concentration) that potentially influence characteristics of culture expanded equine MSCs.

Methods. The study was arranged in three parts comparing (I) five different transport containers (cryotube, two types of plastic syringes, glass syringe, CellSeal), (II) seven different transport media, four temperatures (4 °C vs. room temperature; −20 °C vs. −80 °C), four time frames (24 h vs. 48 h; 48 h vs. 72 h), and (III) three MSC concentrations (5 × 106, 10 × 106, 20 × 106 MSC/ml). Cell viability (Trypan Blue exclusion; percent and total number viable cell), proliferation and trilineage differentiation capacity were assessed for each test condition. Further, the recovered volume of the suspension was determined in part I. Each condition was evaluated using samples of six horses (n = 6) and differentiation protocols were performed in duplicates.

Results. In part I of the study, no significant differences in any of the parameters were found when comparing transport containers at room temperature. The glass syringe was selected for all subsequent evaluations (highest recoverable volume of cell suspension and cell viability). In part II, media, temperatures, or time frames had also no significant influence on cell viability, likely due to the large number of comparisons and small sample size. Highest cell viability was observed using autologous bone marrow supernatant as transport medium, and “transport” at 4 °C for 24 h (70.6% vs. control group 75.3%); this was not significant. Contrary, viability was unacceptably low (<40%) for all freezing protocols at −20 °C or −80 °C, particularly with bone marrow supernatant or plasma and DMSO. In part III, various cell concentrations also had no significant influence on any of the evaluated parameters. Chondrogenic differentiation showed a trend towards being decreased for all transport conditions, compared to control cells.

Discussion. In this study, transport conditions were not found to impact viability, proliferation or ability for trilineage differentiation of MSCs, most likely due to the small sample size and large number of comparisons. The unusual low viability after all freezing protocols is in contrast to previous equine studies. Potential causes are differences in the freezing, but also in thawing method. Also, the selected container (glass syringe) may have impacted viability. Future research may be warranted into the possibly negative effect of transport on chondrogenic differentiation.

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<![CDATA[Cut-Offs and Response Criteria for the Hospital Universitario La Princesa Index (HUPI) and Their Comparison to Widely-Used Indices of Disease Activity in Rheumatoid Arthritis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9d7ab0ee8fa60b661f9

Objective

To estimate cut-off points and to establish response criteria for the Hospital Universitario La Princesa Index (HUPI) in patients with chronic polyarthritis.

Methods

Two cohorts, one of early arthritis (Princesa Early Arthritis Register Longitudinal [PEARL] study) and other of long-term rheumatoid arthritis (Estudio de la Morbilidad y Expresión Clínica de la Artritis Reumatoide [EMECAR]) including altogether 1200 patients were used to determine cut-off values for remission, and for low, moderate and high activity through receiver operating curve (ROC) analysis. The areas under ROC (AUC) were compared to those of validated indexes (SDAI, CDAI, DAS28). ROC analysis was also applied to establish minimal and relevant clinical improvement for HUPI.

Results

The best cut-off points for HUPI are 2, 5 and 9, classifying RA activity as remission if ≤2, low disease activity if >2 and ≤5), moderate if >5 and <9 and high if ≥9. HUPI’s AUC to discriminate between low-moderate activity was 0.909 and between moderate-high activity 0.887. DAS28’s AUCs were 0.887 and 0.846, respectively; both indices had higher accuracy than SDAI (AUCs: 0.832 and 0.756) and CDAI (AUCs: 0.789 and 0.728). HUPI discriminates remission better than DAS28-ESR in early arthritis, but similarly to SDAI. The HUPI cut-off for minimal clinical improvement was established at 2 and for relevant clinical improvement at 4. Response criteria were established based on these cut-off values.

Conclusions

The cut-offs proposed for HUPI perform adequately in patients with either early or long term arthritis.

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<![CDATA[Overexpression of centromere protein K (CENPK) in ovarian cancer is correlated with poor patient survival and associated with predictive and prognostic relevance]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da82ab0ee8fa60b9ae2f

Ovarian cancer has a poor prognosis. Most patients are diagnosed with ovarian cancer when the disease has reached an advanced stage and cure rates are generally under 30%. Hence, early diagnosis of ovarian cancer is the best means to control the disease in the long term and abate mortality. So far, cancer antigen 125 (CA125) and human epididymis protein 4 (HE4) are the gold-standard tumor markers for ovarian cancer; however, these two markers can be elevated in a number of conditions unrelated to ovarian cancer, resulting in decreased specifically and positive predictive value. Therefore, it is urgent to identify novel biomarkers with high reliability and sensitivity for ovarian cancer. In this study for the first time, we identified a member of the centromere protein (CENP) family, CENPK, which was specifically upregulated in ovarian cancer tissues and cell lines and the overexpression of which was associated with poor prognoses in patients with ovarian cancer. In addition, the presence of CENPK significantly improved the sensitivity of CA125 or HE4 for predicting clinical outcomes of ovarian cancer patients. In conclusion, we identified that CENPK was specifically upregulated in ovarian cancer cells and can be used as a novel tumor marker of ovarian cancer.

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<![CDATA[Minimum information about tolerogenic antigen-presenting cells (MITAP): a first step towards reproducibility and standardisation of cellular therapies]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da7dab0ee8fa60b991ac

Cellular therapies with tolerogenic antigen-presenting cells (tolAPC) show great promise for the treatment of autoimmune diseases and for the prevention of destructive immune responses after transplantation. The methodologies for generating tolAPC vary greatly between different laboratories, making it difficult to compare data from different studies; thus constituting a major hurdle for the development of standardised tolAPC therapeutic products. Here we describe an initiative by members of the tolAPC field to generate a minimum information model for tolAPC (MITAP), providing a reporting framework that will make differences and similarities between tolAPC products transparent. In this way, MITAP constitutes a first but important step towards the production of standardised and reproducible tolAPC for clinical application.

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<![CDATA[Effects of statins on TH1 modulating cytokines in human subjects]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9daab0ee8fa60b67543

Background. Activation of the innate immune system by cholesterol accelerates atherosclerosis. High levels or modified forms of cholesterol stimulate release of the inflammatory cytokines IL-12 and IL-18 that synergistically stimulate T lymphocytes to produce the atherogenic cytokine interferon-γ. While activation of the innate immune system by cholesterol is well-described in animal models and human subjects with high cholesterol levels or known atherosclerotic disease, the interaction of cholesterol and lipoproteins with the innate immune system in human subjects without known atherosclerosis is less well-described. The goal of our study was to assess the TH1 modulating cytokines IL-12 p40 and IL-18, and their counter regulatory cytokines IL-18 binding protein and IL-27, to determine if their levels are linked to cholesterol levels or other factors.

Methods. We performed a blinded, randomized hypothesis-generating study in human subjects without known atherosclerotic disease. We measured serum lipids, lipoprotein levels, and collected plasma samples at baseline. Subjects were randomized to two weeks of therapy with atorvastatin, pravastatin, or rosuvastatin. Lipids and cytokine levels were measured after two weeks of statin treatment. Subjects were given a four-week statin-free period. At the end of the four-week statin-free period, venous blood was sampled again to determine if serum lipids returned to within 5% of their pre-statin levels. When lipid levels returned to baseline, subjects were again treated with the next statin in the randomization scheme. IL-12, IL-18, IL-18 binding protein, and IL-27 were measured at baseline and after each statin treatment to determine effects of statin treatment on their blood levels, and identify correlations with lipids and lipoproteins.

Results. Therapy with statins revealed no significant change in the levels of IL-12, IL-18, IL-18 binding protein or IL-27 levels. We found that IL-18 levels positively correlate with total cholesterol levels (r2 = 0.15, p < 0.03), but not HDL or LDL cholesterol. In contrast, IL-12 p40 levels inversely correlated with total cholesterol (r2 = −0.17, p < 0.008), HDL cholesterol (r2 = −0.22, p < 0.002), and apolipoprotein A1 (r2 = −0.21, p < 0.002). Similarly, IL-18 binding protein levels inversely correlated with apolipoprotein A1 levels (r2 = −0.13, p < 0.02).

Conclusions. Our findings suggest that total cholesterol levels positively regulate IL-18, while HDL cholesterol and apolipoprotein A1 may reduce IL-12 p40 and IL-18 binding protein levels. Additional studies in a larger patient population are needed to confirm these findings, and verify mechanistically whether HDL cholesterol can directly suppress IL-12 p40 and IL-18 binding protein levels in human subjects.

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<![CDATA[Deficiencies of effectiveness of intervention studies in veterinary medicine: a cross-sectional survey of ten leading veterinary and medical journals]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989daaaab0ee8fa60ba91b7

The validity of studies that assess the effectiveness of an intervention (EoI) depends on variables such as the type of study design, the quality of their methodology, and the participants enrolled. Five leading veterinary journals and 5 leading human medical journals were hand-searched for EoI studies for the year 2013. We assessed (1) the prevalence of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) among EoI studies, (2) the type of participants enrolled, and (3) the methodological quality of the selected studies. Of 1707 eligible articles, 590 were EoI articles and 435 RCTs. Random allocation to the intervention was performed in 52% (114/219; 95%CI:45.2–58.8%) of veterinary EoI articles, against 87% (321/371; 82.5–89.7%) of human EoI articles (adjusted OR:9.2; 3.4–24.8). Veterinary RCTs were smaller (median: 26 animals versus 465 humans) and less likely to enroll real patients, compared with human RCTs (OR:331; 45–2441). Only 2% of the veterinary RCTs, versus 77% of the human RCTs, reported power calculations, primary outcomes, random sequence generation, allocation concealment and estimation methods. Currently, internal and external validity of veterinary EoI studies is limited compared to human medical ones. To address these issues, veterinary interventional research needs to improve its methodology, increase the number of published RCTs and enroll real clinical patients.

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<![CDATA[Optimising Translational Research Opportunities: A Systematic Review and Narrative Synthesis of Basic and Clinician Scientists' Perspectives of Factors Which Enable or Hinder Translational Research]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da4dab0ee8fa60b8d3d3

Introduction

Translational research is central to international health policy, research and funding initiatives. Despite increasing use of the term, the translation of basic science discoveries into clinical practice is not straightforward. This systematic search and narrative synthesis aimed to examine factors enabling or hindering translational research from the perspective of basic and clinician scientists, a key stakeholder group in translational research, and to draw policy-relevant implications for organisations seeking to optimise translational research opportunities.

Methods and Results

We searched SCOPUS and Web of Science from inception until April 2015 for papers reporting scientists’ views of the factors they perceive as enabling or hindering the conduct of translational research. We screened 8,295 papers from electronic database searches and 20 papers from hand searches and citation tracking, identifying 26 studies of qualitative, quantitative or mixed method designs. We used a narrative synthesis approach and identified the following themes: 1) differing concepts of translational research 2) research processes as a barrier to translational research; 3) perceived cultural divide between research and clinical care; 4) interdisciplinary collaboration as enabling translation research, but dependent on the quality of prior and current social relationships; 5) translational research as entrepreneurial science. Across all five themes, factors enabling or hindering translational research were largely shaped by wider social, organisational, and structural factors.

Conclusion

To optimise translational research, policy could consider refining translational research models to better reflect scientists’ experiences, fostering greater collaboration and buy in from all types of scientists. Organisations could foster cultural change, ensuring that organisational practices and systems keep pace with the change in knowledge production brought about by the translational research agenda.

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<![CDATA[Orthostatic stability with intravenous levodopa]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db0dab0ee8fa60bcb031

Intravenous levodopa has been used in a multitude of research studies due to its more predictable pharmacokinetics compared to the oral form, which is used frequently as a treatment for Parkinson’s disease (PD). Levodopa is the precursor for dopamine, and intravenous dopamine would strongly affect vascular tone, but peripheral decarboxylase inhibitors are intended to block such effects. Pulse and blood pressure, with orthostatic changes, were recorded before and after intravenous levodopa or placebo—after oral carbidopa—in 13 adults with a chronic tic disorder and 16 tic-free adult control subjects. Levodopa caused no statistically or clinically significant changes in blood pressure or pulse. These data add to previous data that support the safety of i.v. levodopa when given with adequate peripheral inhibition of DOPA decarboxylase.

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<![CDATA[The association between fluid balance and mortality in patients with ARDS was modified by serum potassium levels: a retrospective study]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da24ab0ee8fa60b7fe61

Background and Objective. Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) is characterized by pulmonary edema and may benefit from conservative fluid management. However, conflicting results exist in the literature. The study aimed to investigate the association between mean fluid balance and mortality outcome in ARDS patients who required invasive mechanical ventilation.

Methods. The study was a secondary analysis of a prospectively collected dataset obtained from the NHLBI Biologic Specimen and Data Repository Information Coordinating Center. ARDS patients with invasive mechanical ventilation were eligible. Demographic and laboratory data were extracted from the dataset. Multivariable regression model was built by stepwise selection of covariates. A fractional polynomial approach was used to test the linearity of mean fluid balance in the model. The potential interactions of mean fluid balance with other variables were tested.

Main Results. A total of 282 patients were eligible for the analysis, including 61 non-survivors with a mortality rate of 21.6%. After stepwise regression analysis, mean fluid balance remained to be an independent predictor of death (OR: 1.00057; 95% CI [1.00034–1.00080]). The two-term model obtained using fractional polynomial analysis was not superior to the linear model. There was significant interaction between mean fluid balance and serum potassium levels (p = 0.011). While the risk of death increased with increasing mean fluid balance at potassium levels of 1.9, 2.9 , 3.9 and 4.9 mmol/l, the risk decreased at potassium level of 5.9 mmol/l.

Conclusion. The present study demonstrates that more positive fluid balance in the first 8 days is significantly associated with increased risk of death. However, the relationship between mean fluid balance and mortality can be modified by serum potassium levels. With hyperkalemia, more positive fluid balance is associated with reduced risk of death.

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<![CDATA[Non-inferiority of retrospective data collection for assessing perioperative morbidity]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db00ab0ee8fa60bc6772

Background. Postoperative morbidity has immediate and delayed consequences for surgical patients, including excess risk of premature death. Capturing these data objectively and routinely in large electronic databases using tools such as the Postoperative Morbidity Survey (POMS) would offer tremendous clinical and translational potential. However, POMS has thus far only utilised prospective data collection by research staff. We hypothesised that retrospective data collection from routinely collated hospital data from paper and electronic charts, medical and nursing notes was non-inferior to prospective data collection requiring research staff capturing POMS-defined morbidity in real-time.

Methods. Morbidity was recorded by a trained investigator as defined by POMS prospectively on postoperative days 3 and 7. Separately, an independent investigator blinded to prospectively acquired data retrospectively assessed the same patients’ morbidity as defined by POMS criteria, using medical charts, nursing summaries and electronic data. Equivalence was accepted when the confidence limits for both modes of data collection fell completely inside the equivalence bounds, with the maximum equivalence difference (i.e., the largest value of the difference in sensitivities deemed to reach a conclusion of equivalence) set a priori at 0.2. Differences for confidence limits between retrospective and prospective data collection were based on Nam’s RMLE method. The relationship between morbidity on postoperative day 3 as recorded by each data collection method on time to become morbidity free and length of hospital stay was compared using the log-rank test.

Results. POMS data from 85 patients undergoing elective or emergency surgery were analyzed. At postoperative day 3, POMS-defined morbidity was similar regardless of whether data were collected prospectively or retrospectively (95% CI [−0.13–0.013]; p < 0.001). Non-inferiority for sensitivity was observed for all other POMS domains and timepoints. Time to become morbidity free Kaplan–Meier plots were indistinguishable between POMS obtained prospectively or retrospectively (hazard ratio: 1.09 (95% CI [0.76–1.57]); p = 0.33, log rank test). Similarly, the mode of data collection did not alter the association between early postoperative morbidity on postoperative day 3 and delayed hospital discharge.

Conclusions. Postoperative morbidity as defined by the Post Operative Morbidity Survey can be assessed retrospectively. These data may therefore be easily captured using electronic patient record systems, thereby expanding the potential for bioinformatics approaches to generate new clinical and translational insights into recovery from surgery.

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