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1.  Relationship Between Systemic Thrombogenic or Thrombolytic Indices and Acute Increase of Spontaneous Intracerebral Hemorrhage 
Objective
The objective of this study was to determine the correlations between changes in thrombogenesis or thrombolysis related factors, and the acute increase of a spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage (sICH).
Materials and Methods
From January 2009 to October 2011, 225 patients with sICH were admitted to our hospital within 24 hours of onset. Among them, 111 patients with hypertensive sICH were enrolled in this study. Thrombogenic or thrombolytic factors were checked at admission. The authors checked computed tomography (CT) scans at admission and followed up the next day (between 12-24 hours) or at any time when neurologic signs were aggravated. Cases in which the hematoma was enlarged more than 33% were defined as Group A and the others were defined as Group B.
Results
Group A included 30 patients (27%) and group B included 81 patients (73%). Factors including activated partial thromboplastin time, prothrombin time, fibrinogen, and D-dimer showed a greater increase in group A than in group B. Factors including antithrombin III, factor V, and factor X showed a greater increase in group A than in group B.
Conclusion
Based on the results of this study, it seems that the risk of increase in hematoma size can be predicted by serum thrombogenic or thrombolytic factors at admission.
doi:10.7461/jcen.2014.16.3.159
PMCID: PMC4205240  PMID: 25340016
Intracerebral hemorrhage; Spontaneous; Correlation; Thrombogen; Thrombolysis
2.  Clinical and Radiological Outcomes of a New Cage for Direct Lateral Lumbar Interbody Fusion 
Korean Journal of Spine  2014;11(3):145-151.
Objective
In Korea, direct lateral interbody fusion (DLIF) was started since 2011, using standard cage (6° lordotic angle, 18mm width). Recently, a new wider cage with higher lordotic angle (12°, 22mm) was introduced. The aim of our study is to compare the clinical and radiologic outcomes of the two cage types.
Methods
We selected patients underwent DLIF, 125 cases used standard cages (standard group) and 38 cases used new cages (wide group). We followed them up for more than 6 months, and their radiological and clinical outcomes were analyzed retrospectively. For radiologic outcomes, lumbar lordotic angle (LLA), segmental lordoic angle (SLA), disc angle (DA), foraminal height change (FH), subsidence and intraoperative endplate destruction (iED) were checked. Clinical outcomes were compared using visual analog scale (VAS) score, Oswestry disability index (ODI) score and complications.
Results
LLA and SLA showed no significant changes postoperatively in both groups. DA showed significant increase after surgery in the wide group (p<0.05), but not in the standard group. Subsidence was significantly lower in the wide group (p<0.05). There was no difference in clinical outcomes between the two groups. Additional posterior decompression was done more frequently in the wide group. Postoperative change of foraminal height was significantly lower in the wide group (p<0.05). The iED was observed more frequently in the wide group (p<0.05) especially at the anterior edge of cage.
Conclusion
The new type of cage seems to result in more DA and less subsidence. But indirect foraminal decompression seems to be less effective than standard cage. Intraoperative endplate destruction occurs more frequently due to a steeper lordotic angle of the new cage.
doi:10.14245/kjs.2014.11.3.145
PMCID: PMC4206975  PMID: 25346760
DLIF; Cage; Type; Outcome
3.  Sarcopenia and Neurosurgery 
Aging process can be characterized as a spontaneous decrease of function in various organs with age. Muscle, as a big organ of human body, undergoes aging process presenting with loss of muscle mass, "sarcopenia". Recently, several working groups have tried to make consensus about sarcopenia for definition and diagnosis. Muscle mass is known to be closely related with bone, brain, fat, cardiovascular and metabolic systems. With increased understanding, clinical and basic researches about sarcopenia have been also increased rapidly from various areas of health science and technology. In this paper, the history and recent concepts of sarcopenia were reviewed and brief discussion of its prospect in the field of neurosurgery was done.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2014.56.2.79
PMCID: PMC4200370  PMID: 25328642
Aging; Muscles; Sarcopenia; Consensus; Stroke; Spine
4.  Risk Factors for Delirium after Spine Surgery in Elderly Patients 
Objective
Postoperative delirium is a common complication in the elderly after surgery but few papers have reported after spinal surgery. We analyzed various risk factors for postoperative delirium after spine surgery.
Methods
Between May 2012 and September 2013, 70 patients over 60 years of age were examined. The patients were divided into two groups : Group A with delirium and Group B without delirium. Cognitive function was examined with the Mini-Mental State Examination-Korea (MMSE-K), Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) and Global Deterioration Scale (GDS). Information was also obtained on the patients' education level, underlying diseases, duration of hospital stay and laboratory findings. Intraoperative assessment included Bispectral index (BIS), type of surgery or anesthesia, blood pressure, fluid balance, estimated blood loss and duration of surgery.
Results
Postoperative delirium developed in 17 patients. The preoperative scores for the MMSE, CDR, and GDS in Group A were 19.1±5.4, 0.9±0.6, and 3.3±1.1. These were significantly lower than those of Group B (25.6±3.4, 0.5±0.2, and 2.1±0.7) (p<0.05). BIS was lower in Group A (30.2±6.8 compared to 35.4±5.6 in group B) (p<0.05). The number of BIS <40 were 5.1±3.1 times in Group A, 2.5±2.2 times in Group B (p<0.01). In addition, longer operation time and longer hospital stay were risk factors.
Conclusion
Precise analysis of risk factors for postoperative delirium seems to be more important in spinal surgery because the surgery is not usually expected to have an effect on brain function. Although no risk factors specific to spinal surgery were identified, the BIS may represent a valuable new intraoperative predictor of the risk of delirium.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2014.56.1.28
PMCID: PMC4185316  PMID: 25289122
Postoperative delirium; Cognitive function test; Bispectral index
5.  Unusual Clinical Presentations of Cervical or Lumbar Dorsal Ramus Syndrome 
Korean Journal of Spine  2014;11(2):57-61.
Objective
Patients with cervical (CDRS) or lumbar dorsal ramus syndrome (LDRS) are characterized by neck or low back pain with referred pain to upper or lower extremities. However, we experienced some CDRS or LDRS patients with unusual motor or bladder symptoms. We analyzed and reviewed literatures on the unusual symptoms identified in patients with CDRS or LDRS.
Methods
This study included patients with unusual symptoms and no disorders of spine and central nervous system, a total of 206 CDRS/LDRS patients over the past 3 years. We diagnosed by using double diagnostic blocks for medial branches of dorsal rami of cervical or lumbar spine with 1% lidocaine or 0.5% bupivacaine for each block with an interval of more than 1 week between the blocks. Greater than 80% reduction of the symptoms, including unusual symptoms, was considered as a positive response. The patients with a positive response were treated with radiofrequencyneurotomy.
Results
The number of patients diagnosed with CDRS and LDRS was 86 and 120, respectively. Nine patients (10.5%) in the CDRS group had unusual symptoms, including 4 patients with motor weakness of the arm, 3 patients with tremors, and rotatory torticollis in 2 patients. Ten patients (8.3%) in the LDRS group showed unusual symptoms, including 7 patients with motor weakness of leg, 2 patients with leg tremor, and urinary incontinence in 1 patient. All the unusual symptoms combined with CDRS or LDRS were resolved after treatment.
Conclusion
It seems that the clinical presentationssuch as motor weakness, tremor, urinary incontinence without any other etiologic origin need to be checked for unusual symptoms of CDRS or LDRS.
doi:10.14245/kjs.2014.11.2.57
PMCID: PMC4124925  PMID: 25110484
Spinal nerves; Low back pain; Neck pain; Paralysis; Urinary incontinence; Tremor
6.  A Case of Cauda Equina Syndrome in Early-Onset Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy Clinically Similar to Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease Type 1 
To present a case of cauda equina syndrome (CES) caused by chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP) which seemed clinically similar to Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease type1 (CMT1). CIDP is an immune-mediated polyneuropathy, either progressive or relapsing-remitting. It is a non-hereditary disorder characterized by symmetrical motor and sensory deficits. Rarely, spinal nerve roots can be involved, leading to CES by hypertrophic cauda equina. A 34-year-old man presented with low back pain, radicular pain, bilateral lower-extremity weakness, urinary incontinence, and constipation. He had had musculoskeletal deformities, such as hammertoes and pes cavus, since age 10. Lumbar spine magnetic resonance imaging showed diffuse thickening of the cauda equina. Electrophysiological testing showed increased distal latency, conduction blocks, temporal dispersion, and severe nerve conduction velocity slowing (3 m/s). We were not able to find genetic mutations at the PMP 22, MPZ, PRX, and EGR2 genes. The pathologic findings of the sural nerve biopsy revealed thinly myelinated nerve fibers with Schwann cells proliferation. We performed a decompressive laminectomy, intravenous IgG (IV-IgG) and oral steroid. At 1 week after surgery, most of his symptoms showed marked improvements except foot deformities. There was no relapse or aggravation of disease for 3 years. We diagnosed the case as an early-onset CIDP with cauda equine syndrome, whose initial clinical findings were similar to those of CMT1, and successfully managed with decompressive laminectomy, IV-IgG and oral steroid.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2014.55.6.370
PMCID: PMC4166336  PMID: 25237436
Cauda equina syndrome; Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy; Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease; Laminectomy
7.  Direct Lateral Lumbar Interbody Fusion: Clinical and Radiological Outcomes 
Objective
According to the recent development of minimally invasive spinal surgery, direct lumbar interbody fusion (DLIF) was introduced as an effective option to treat lumbar degenerative diseases. However, comprehensive results of DLIF have not been reported in Korea yet. The object of this study is to summarize radiological and clinical outcomes of our DLIF experience.
Methods
We performed DLIF for 130 patients from May 2011 to June 2013. Among them, 90 patients, who could be followed up for more than 6 months, were analyzed retrospectively. Clinical outcomes were compared using visual analog scale (VAS) score and Oswestry Disability Index (ODI). Bilateral foramen areas, disc height, segmental coronal and sagittal angle, and regional sagittal angle were measured. Additionally, fusion rate was assessed.
Results
A total of 90 patients, 116 levels, were underwent DLIF. The VAS and ODI improved statistically significant after surgery. All the approaches for DLIF were done on the left side. The left and right side foramen area changed from 99.5 mm2 and 102.9 mm2 to 159.2 mm2 and 151.2 mm2 postoperatively (p<0.001). Pre- and postoperative segmental coronal and sagittal angles changed statistically significant from 4.1° and 9.9° to 1.1° and 11.1°. Fusion rates of 6 and 12 months were 60.9% and 87.8%. Complications occurred in 17 patients (18.9%). However, most of the complications were resolved within 2 months.
Conclusion
DLIF is not only effective for indirect decompression and deformity correction but also shows satisfactory mechanical stability and fusion rate.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2014.55.5.248
PMCID: PMC4130949  PMID: 25132930
Direct lumbar interbody fusion; Minimal invasive spine surgery; Radiological outcomes; Clinical outcomes
8.  15-deoxy-Δ12,14-prostaglandin J2 Down-Regulates Activin-Induced Activin Receptor, Smad, and Cytokines Expression via Suppression of NF-κB and MAPK Signaling in HepG2 Cells 
PPAR Research  2013;2013:751261.
15-Deoxy-Δ12,14-prostaglandin J2 (15d-PGJ2) and activin are implicated in the control of apoptosis, cell proliferation, and inflammation in cells. We examined both the mechanism by which 15d-PGJ2 regulates the transcription of activin-induced activin receptors (ActR) and Smads in HepG2 cells and the involvement of the nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathways in this regulation. Activin A (25 ng/mL) inhibited HepG2 cell proliferation, whereas 15d-PGJ2 (2 μM and 5 μM) had no effect. Activin A and 15d-PGJ2 showed different regulatory effects on ActR and Smad expression, NF-κB p65 activity and MEK/ERK phosphorylation, whereas they both decreased IL-6 production and increased IL-8 production. When co-stimulated with 15d-PGJ2 and activin, 15d-PGJ2 inhibited the activin-induced increases in ActR and Smad expression, and decreased activin-induced IL-6 production. However, it increased activin-induced IL-8 production. In addition, 15d-PGJ2 inhibited activin-induced NF-κB p65 activity and activin-induced MEK/ERK phosphorylation. These results suggest that 15d-PGJ2 suppresses activin-induced ActR and Smad expression, down-regulates IL-6 production, and up-regulates IL-8 production via suppression of NF-κB and MAPK signaling pathway in HepG2 cells. Regulation of ActR and Smad transcript expression and cytokine production involves NF-κB and the MAPK pathway via interaction with 15d-PGJ2/activin/Smad signaling.
doi:10.1155/2013/751261
PMCID: PMC3800567  PMID: 24204381
9.  The Effect of Radiofrequency Neurotomy of Lower Cervical Medial Branches on Cervicogenic Headache 
Objective
Cervicogenic headache (CGH) is known to be mainly related with upper cervical problems. In this study, the effect of radiofrequency neurotomy (RFN) for lower cervical (C4-7) medial branches on CGH was evaluated.
Methods
Eleven patients with neck pain and headache, who were treated with lower cervical RFN due to supposed lower cervical zygapophysial joint pain without symptomatic intervertebral disc problem or stenosis, were enrolled in this study. CGH was diagnosed according to the diagnostic criteria of the cervicogenic headache international study group. Visual analogue scale (VAS) score and degree of VAS improvement (VASi) (%) were checked for evaluation of the effect of lower cervical RFN on CGH.
Results
The VAS score at 6 months after RFN was 2.7±1.3, which were significantly decreased comparing to the VAS score before RFN, 8.1±1.1 (p<0.001). The VASi at 6 months after RFN was 63.8±17.1%. There was no serious complication.
Conclusion
Our data suggest that lower cervical disorders can play a role in the genesis of headache in addition to the upper cervical disorders or independently.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2011.50.6.507
PMCID: PMC3272511  PMID: 22323937
Cervicogenic headache; Radiofrequency; Neurotomy; Medial branch
10.  Neuroprotective Effect of Anthocyanin on Experimental Traumatic Spinal Cord Injury 
Objective
We investigated the neuroprotective effect of anthocyanin, oxygen radical scavenger extracted from raspberries, after traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) in rats.
Methods
The animals were divided into two groups : the vehicle-treated group (control group, n=20) received an oral administration of normal saline via stomach intubation immediately after SCI, and the anthocyanin-treated group (AT group, n=20) received 400 mg/kg of cyanidin 3-O-β-glucoside (C3G) in the same way. We compared the neurological functions, superoxide expressions and lesion volumes in two groups.
Results
At 14 days after SCI, the AT group showed significant improvement of the BBB score by 16.7±3.4%, platform hang by 40.0±9.1% and hind foot bar grab by 30.8±8.4% (p<0.05 in all outcomes). The degree of superoxide expression, represented by the ratio of red fluorescence intensity, was significantly lower in the AT group (0.98±0.38) than the control group (1.34±0.24) (p<0.05). The lesion volume in lesion periphery was 32.1±2.4 µL in the control and 24.5±2.3 µL in the AT group, respectively (p<0.05), and the motor neuron cell number of the anterior horn in lesion periphery was 8.3±5.1 cells/HPF in the control and 13.4±6.3 cells/HPF in the AT group, respectively (p<0.05).
Conclusion
Anthocyanin seemed to reduce lesion volume and neuronal loss by its antioxidant effect and these resulted in improved functional recovery.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2011.49.4.205
PMCID: PMC3098422  PMID: 21607177
Spinal cord trauma; Anthocyanin; Antioxidants
11.  Postoperative Systemic Dissemination of Injected Elemental Mercury 
There were only a few reports of mercury on pulmonary artery. However, there is no data on surgery related mercury dissemination. The objective of the present article is to describe one case of postoperative injected mercury dissemination. A 19-year-old man presented severe neck pain including meningeal irritation sign and abdominal pain after injection of mercury for the purpose of suicide. Radiologic study showed injected mercury in the neck involving high cervical epidural space and subcutaneous layer of abdomen. Partial hemilaminectomy and open mercury evacuation of spinal canal was performed. For the removal of abdominal subcutaneous mercury, C-arm guided needle aspiration was done. After surgery, radiologic study showed disseminated mercury in the lung, heart, skull base and low spinal canal. Neck pain and abdominal pain were improved after surgery. During 1 month after surgery, there was no symptom of mercury intoxication except increased mercury concentration of urine, blood and hair. We assumed the bone work during surgery might have caused mercury dissemination. Therefore, we recommend minimal invasive surgical technique for removal of injected mercury. If open exposures are needed, cautious surgical technique to prohibit mercury dissemination is necessary and normal barrier should be protected to prevent the migration of mercury.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2011.49.4.245
PMCID: PMC3098432  PMID: 21607187
Bone work; Mercury poisoning; Postoperative complications; Transvascular dissemination
12.  Symptomatic Post-Discectomy Pseudocyst after Endoscopic Lumbar Discectomy 
Objective
The objectives of this study were to determine the frequency of symptomatic postdiscectomy pseudocyst (PP) after endoscopic discectomy and to compare the results of surgical and conservative management of them.
Methods
Initial study participants were 1,503 cases (1,406 patients) receiving endoscopic lumbar discectomy by 23-member board of neurosurgeons from March 2003 to October 2008. All patients' postoperative magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans were evaluated. On the postoperative MRI, cystic lesion of T2W high and T1W low at discectomy site was regarded as PP. Reviews of medical records and radiological findings were done. The PP patients were divided into two groups, surgical and conservative management by treatment modality after PP detection. We compared the results of the two groups using the visual analogue scale (VAS) for low back pain (LBP), VAS for leg pain (LP) and the Oswestry disability index (ODI).
Results
Among 1,503 cases of all male soldiers, the MRIs showed that pseudocysts formed in 15 patients, about 1.0% of the initial cases. The mean postoperative interval from surgery to PP detection was 53.7 days. Interlaminar approach was correlated with PP formation compared with transforaminal approach (p=0.001). The mean VAS for LBP and LP in the surgical group improved from 6.5 and 4.8 to 2.0 and 2.3, respectively. The mean VAS for LBP and LP in the conservative group improved from 4.4 and 4.4 to 3.9 and 2.3, respectively. There was no difference in treatment outcome between surgical and conservative management of symptomatic PP.
Conclusion
Although this study was done in limited environment, symptomatic PP was detected at two months' postoperative period in about 1% of cases. Interlaminar approach seems to be more related with PP compared with transforaminal approach.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2011.49.1.31
PMCID: PMC3070892  PMID: 21494360
Endoscopic discectomy; Herniated disc; Lumbar; Postoperative complication; Pseudocyst
13.  A Solitary Skull Lesion of Syphilitic Osteomyelitis 
We experienced a rare case of solitary syphilitic osteomyelitis of the skull without any other clinical signs or symptoms of syphilis. A 20-year-old man was referred due to intermittent headache and mild tenderness at the right parietal area of the skull with a palpable coin-sized lesion of softened cortical bone. On radiological studies, the lesion was a radiolucent well enhanced mass (17 mm in diameter). The erythrocyte sedimentation rate (52 mm/h) and C-reactive protein (2.24 mg/dL) were elevated on admission. Serum venereal disease research laboratory (VDRL) and Treponema pallidum haemagglutination assay (TPHA) tests were positive. There were no clinical signs or symptoms of syphilis. After treatment with benzathine penicillin, we removed the lesion and performed cranioplasty. The pathologic finding of the skull lesion was fibrous proliferation with lymphoplasmocytic infiltration forming an osteolytic lesion. In addition, a spirochete was identified using the Warthin-starry stain. The polymerase chain reaction study showed a positive band for Treponema pallidum. Solitary osteomyelitis of the skull can be the initial presenting pathological lesion of syphilis.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2010.48.1.85
PMCID: PMC2916157  PMID: 20717520
Infectious osteomyelitis; Syphilis; Skull; Treponema pallidum
14.  Remote Cerebellar Hemorrhage after Lumbar Spinal Surgery 
Remote cerebellar hemorrhage (RCH) is rare but potentially lethal as a complication of spinal surgery. We recently experienced a case of RCH in a 61-year-old man who showed mental deterioration after lumbar spinal surgery. There was dural tearing with subsequent cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) loss during the surgery. Brain computed tomography scan revealed cerebellar hemorrhage, 3rd and 4th ventricular hemorrhage and pneumocephalus. He underwent suboccipital craniectomy and hematoma removal. The most important pathomechanism leading to RCH after spinal surgery has been known to be venous bleeding due to caudal sagging of cerebellum by rapid leak of large amount of CSF which seems to be related with this case. Dural repair and minimizing CSF loss after intraoperative dural tearing would be helpful to prevent postoperative RCH.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2009.46.5.501
PMCID: PMC2796361  PMID: 20041065
Remote cerebellar hemorrhage; Spinal surgery; Dural tear; Cerebrospinal fluid leakage
15.  Detection of Traumatic Cerebral Microbleeds by Susceptibility-Weighted Image of MRI 
Objective
Susceptibility-weighted image (SWI) is a sensitive magnetic resonance image (MRI) technique to detect cerebral microbleeds (MBLs), which would not be detected by conventional MRI. We performed SWI to detect MBLs and investigated its usefulness in the evaluation of mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI) patients.
Methods
From December 2006 to June 2007, twenty-one MTBI patients without any parenchymal hemorrhage on conventional MRI were selected. Forty-two patients without trauma were selected for control group. According to the presence of MBLs, we divided the MTBI group into MBLs positive [SWI (+)] and negative [SWI (-)] group. Regional distribution of MBLs and clinical factors were compared between groups.
Results
Fifty-one MBLs appeared in 16 patients of SWI (+) group and 16 MBLs in 10 patients of control group [control (+)], respectively. In SWI (+) group, MBLs were located more frequently in white matters than in deep nucleus different from the control (+) group (p < 0.05). Nine patients (56.3%) of SWI (+) group had various neurological deficits (disorientation in 4, visual field defect in 2, hearing difficulty in 2 and Parkinson syndrome in 1). Initial Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS)/mean Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOS) were 13.9 ± 1.5 / 4.7 ± 0.8 and 15.0 ± 0.0 / 5.0 ± 0.0 in SWI (+) and SWI (-) groups, respectively (p < 0.05).
Conclusion
Traumatic cerebral MBLs showed characteristic regional distribution, and seemed to have an importance on the initial neurological status and the prognosis. SWI is useful for detection of traumatic cerebral MBLs, and can provide etiologic evidences for some post-traumatic neurologic deficits which were unexplainable with conventional MRI.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2009.46.4.365
PMCID: PMC2773396  PMID: 19893728
Traumatic brain injury; Susceptibility-weighted image; Microbleeds
16.  Endovascular Treatment for Common Iliac Artery Injury Complicating Lumbar Disc Surgery : Limited Usefulness of Temporary Balloon Occlusion 
Vascular injury during lumbar disc surgery is a rare but potentially life-threatening complication. It has been managed by open vascular surgical repair. With recent technologic advance, endovascular treatment became one of effective treatment modalities. We present a case of a 32-year-old woman who suffered with common iliac artery injury during lumbar disc surgery that was treated successfully by endovascular repair with temporary balloon occlusion and subsequent insertion of a covered stent. Temporary balloon occlusion for 1.5 hours could stop bleeding, but growing pseudoaneurysm was identified at the injury site during the following 13 days. It seems that the temporary balloon occlusion can stall bleeding from arterial injury for considerable time duration, but cannot be a single treatment modality and requires subsequent insertion of a covered stent.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2009.46.3.261
PMCID: PMC2764027  PMID: 19844629
Endovascular repair; Covered stent; Balloon occlusion; Lumbar disc surgery; Common iliac artery; Pseudoaneurysm
17.  Discovery of functional elements in 12 Drosophila genomes using evolutionary signatures 
Nature  2007;450(7167):219-232.
Sequencing of multiple related species followed by comparative genomics analysis constitutes a powerful approach for the systematic understanding of any genome. Here, we use the genomes of 12 Drosophila species for the de novo discovery of functional elements in the fly. Each type of functional element shows characteristic patterns of change, or ‘evolutionary signatures’, dictated by its precise selective constraints. Such signatures enable recognition of new protein-coding genes and exons, spurious and incorrect gene annotations, and numerous unusual gene structures, including abundant stop-codon readthrough. Similarly, we predict non-protein-coding RNA genes and structures, and new microRNA (miRNA) genes. We provide evidence of miRNA processing and functionality from both hairpin arms and both DNA strands. We identify several classes of pre- and post-transcriptional regulatory motifs, and predict individual motif instances with high confidence. We also study how discovery power scales with the divergence and number of species compared, and we provide general guidelines for comparative studies.
doi:10.1038/nature06340
PMCID: PMC2474711  PMID: 17994088
18.  Regulation of the catalytic function of topoisomerase II alpha through association with RNA 
Nucleic Acids Research  2008;36(19):6080-6090.
Topoisomerase IIα interacts with numerous nuclear factors, through which it is engaged in diverse nuclear events such as DNA replication, transcription and the formation or maintenance of heterochromatin. We previously reported that topoisomerase IIα interacts with RNA helicase A (RHA), consistent with a recent view that topoisomerases and helicases function together. Intrigued by our observation that the RHA–topoisomerase IIα interaction is sensitive to ribonuclease A, we explored whether the RHA–topoisomerase IIα interaction can be recapitulated in vitro using purified proteins and a synthetic RNA. This work led us to an unexpected finding that an RNA-binding activity is intrinsically associated with topoisomerase IIα. Topoisomerase IIα stably interacted with RNA harboring a 3′-hydroxyl group but not with RNA possessing a 3′-phosphate group. When measured in decatenation and relaxation assays, RNA binding influenced the catalytic function of topoisomerase IIα to regulate DNA topology. We discuss a possible interaction of topoisomerase IIα with the poly(A) tail and G/U-rich 3′-untranslated region (3′-UTR) of mRNA as a key step in transcription termination.
doi:10.1093/nar/gkn614
PMCID: PMC2577339  PMID: 18820297
19.  The Effect of Barbiturate Coma Therapy for the Patients with Severe Intracranial Hypertension: A 10-Year Experience 
Objective
Barbiturate coma therapy (BCT) has been known to be an useful method to control increased intracranial pressure (IICP) refractory to medical and surgical treatments. We have used BCT for patients with severe IICP during the past 10 years, and analyzed our results with review of literatures.
Methods
We analyzed 92 semicomatose or comatose patients with Glasgow coma scale (GCS) of 7 or less with severe IICP due to cerebral edema secondary to parenchymal damages irrespective of their causes. Forty patients who had received BCT with ICP monitoring from January 1997 to December 2006 were included in BCT group, and fifty-two patients who had been managed without BCT from January 1991 to December 1995 were divided into control group. We compared outcomes with Glasgow outcome scale (GOS) and survival rate between the two groups.
Results
Good outcome (GOS=4 and 5) rates at 3-month after insult were 27.5% and 5.8% in BCT and control group, respectively (p<0.01). One-year survival rates were 35.9% and 12.5% in BCT and control group, respectively (p<0.01). In BCT group, the mean age of good outcome patients (37.1 ± 14.9) was significantly lower than that of poor outcome patients (48.1 ± 13.5) (p<0.05).
Conclusion
With our 10-year experience, we suggest that BCT is an effective treatment method for severe IICP patients for better survival and GOS, especially for younger patients.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2008.44.3.141
PMCID: PMC2588298  PMID: 19096664
Barbiturate coma; Increased intracranial pressure; Survival; Glasgow outcome scale
20.  Comparison of Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion with Direct Lumbar Interbody Fusion: Clinical and Radiological Results 
Objective
The use of direct lumbar interbody fusion (DLIF) has gradually increased; however, no studies have directly compared DLIF and transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF). We compared DLIF and TLIF on the basis of clinical and radiological outcomes.
Methods
A retrospective review was performed on the medical records and radiographs of 98 and 81 patients who underwent TLIF and DLIF between January 2011 and December 2012. Clinical outcomes were compared with a visual analog scale (VAS) and the Oswestry disability index (ODI). The preoperative and postoperative disc heights, segmental sagittal/coronal angles, and lumbar lordosis were measured on radiographs. Fusion rates, operative time, estimated blood loss (EBL), length of hospital stay, and complications were assessed.
Results
DLIF was superior to TLIF regarding its ability to restore disc height, foraminal height, and coronal balance (p<0.001). As the extent of surgical level increased, DLIF displayed significant advantages over TLIF considering the operative time and EBL. However, fusion rates at 12 months post-operation were lower for DLIF (87.8%) than for TLIF (98.1%) (p=0.007). The changes of VAS and ODI between the TLIF and DLIF were not significantly different (p>0.05).
Conclusion
Both DLIF and TLIF are less invasive and thus good surgical options for treating degenerative lumber diseases. DLIF has higher potential in increasing neural foramina and correcting coronal balance, and involves a shorter operative time and reduced EBL, in comparison with TLIF. However, DLIF displayed a lower fusion rate than TLIF, and caused complications related to the transpsoas approach.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2014.56.6.469
PMCID: PMC4303721  PMID: 25628805
Transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion; Direct lumbar interbody fusion; Segmental balance; Coronal balance; Fusion rate
21.  Long Term Effect on Adjacent Segment Motion after Posterior Cervical Foraminotomy 
Korean Journal of Spine  2014;11(1):1-6.
Objective
Posterior cervical foraminotomy (PCF) is a motion-preserving surgical technique. The objective was to determine whether PCF alter cervical motion as a long-term influence.
Methods
Thirty one patients who followed up more than 36 months after PCF for cervical radiculopathy from January 2004 to September 2008 were enrolled in this study. The range of motion (ROM) of whole cervical spine, the operated segment, the cranial and the caudal adjacent segment were obtained. The clinical result and the change of ROMs were compared with those in the patients performed anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) during the same period.
Results
In PCF group, the ROM of whole cervical spine had no significant difference in statistically at preoperative and last follow up. The operated segment ROM was significantly decreased from 11.02±5.72 to 8.82±6.65 (p<0.05). The ROM of cranial adjacent segment was slightly increased from 10.42±5.13 to 11.02±5.41 and the ROM of caudal adjacent segment was decreased from 9.44±6.26 to 8.73±5.92, however these data were not meaningful statistically. In ACDF group, the operated ROM was decreased and unlike in PCF group, especially the ROM of caudal adjacent segment was increased from 9.39±4.21 to 11.33±5.07 (p<0.01).
Conclusion
As part of the long-term effects of PCF on cervical motion, the operated segment motions decreased but were preserved after PCF. However, unlikely after ACDF, the ROMs of the adjacent segment did not increase after PCF. PCF, by maintaining the motion of the operated segment, imposes less stress on the adjacent segments. This may be one of its advantages.
doi:10.14245/kjs.2014.11.1.1
PMCID: PMC4040637  PMID: 24891864
Posterior cervical foraminotomy; Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion; Adjacent segment; Range of motion
22.  A Case of Teriparatide on Pregnancy-Induced Osteoporosis 
Journal of Bone Metabolism  2013;20(2):111-114.
Pregnancy-induced osteoporosis is a rare disorder characterized by fragility fracture and low bone mineral density (BMD) during or shortly after pregnancy, and its etiology is still unclear. We experienced a case of a 39-year-old woman who suffered from lumbago 3 months after delivery. Biochemical evidence of increased bone resorption is observed without secondary causes of osteoporosis. Radiologic examination showed multiple compression fractures on her lumbar vertebrae. We report a case of patient with pregnancy-induced osteoporosis improved her clinical symptom, BMD and bone turnover marker after teriparatide therapy.
doi:10.11005/jbm.2013.20.2.111
PMCID: PMC3910313  PMID: 24524067
Osteoporosis; Pregnancy; Teriparatide
23.  Transient Adverse Neurologic Effects of Spinal Pain Blocks 
Objective
Chronic neck or back pain can be managed with various procedures. Although these procedures are usually well-tolerated, a variety of side effects have been reported. In this study we reviewed cases of unexpected temporary adverse events after blocks and suggest possible causes.
Methods
We reviewed the records of patients treated with spinal pain blocks between December 2009 and January 2011. The types of blocks performed were medial branch blocks, interlaminar epidural blocks and transforaminal epidural blocks. During the first eight months of the study period (Group A), 2% mepivacaine HCL and triamcinolone was used, and during the last six months of the study period (Group B), mepivacaine was diluted to 1% with normal saline.
Results
There were 704 procedures in 613 patients. Ten patients had 12 transient neurologic events. Nine patients were in Group A and one was in Group B. Transient complications occurred in four patients after cervical block and in eight patients after lumbar block. Side effects of lumbar spine blocks were associated with the concentration of mepivacaine (p<0.05). The likely causes were a high concentration of mepivacaine in five patients, inadvertent vascular injection in three patients, intrathecal leak of local anesthetics in one, and underlying conversion disorder in one.
Conclusion
Spinal pain blocks are a good option for relieving pain, but clinicians should always keep in mind the potential for development of inevitable complications. Careful history-taking, appropriate selection of the anesthetics, and using real-time fluoroscopy could help reduce the occurrence of adverse events.
doi:10.3340/jkns.2012.52.3.228
PMCID: PMC3483324  PMID: 23115666
Adverse effect; Spinal pain; Conversion disorder; Medial branch blocks; Paralysis; C2 ganglion block
24.  Salvage Surgical Treatment for Failed Endovascular Procedure of a Blood Blister-Like Aneurysm 
The blood blister-like aneurysm (BBA) of the internal carotid artery (ICA) is a rare but clinically important cause of subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH), which accounts for 0.5% of incidences of ruptured intracranial aneurysms. BBA is a thin-walled, broad-based aneurysm that lacks an identifiable neck and is one of the most difficult lesions to treat. In this paper, a case is presented of a 57-year-old woman with SAH. Her cerebral angiography demonstrated a small BBA on the dorsal wall of her right ICA. Endovascular treatment that consisted of a stent-within-a-stent was attempted, but the replacement of the second stent failed, and the aneurysm became bigger. Surgery was performed by clipping the BBA with a Sundt slim-line encircling graft clip. The patient completely recovered with no complications. This treatment may be a salvageable option for BBA, especially when endovascular treatment has failed.
doi:10.7461/jcen.2012.14.2.99
PMCID: PMC3471259  PMID: 23210036
Blood-blister like aneurysm; Internal carotid artery; Subarachnoid hemorrhage; Encircling graft clip; Endovascular stent
25.  Spontaneous Spinal Epidural Hematomas Associated With Acute Myocardial Infarction Treatment 
Korean Circulation Journal  2011;41(12):759-762.
Many studies have reported spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma (SSEH). Although most cases are idiopathic, several are associated with thrombolytic therapy or anticoagulants. We report a case of SSEH coincident with acute myocardial infarction (AMI), which caused serious neurological deficits. A 56 year old man presented with chest pain accompanied with back and neck pain, which was regarded as an atypical symptom of AMI. He was treated with nitroglycerin, aspirin, low molecular weight heparin, and clopidogrel. A spinal magnetic resonance image taken after paraplegia developed 3 days after the initial symptoms revealed an epidural hematoma at the cervical and thoracolumbar spine. Despite emergent decompressive surgery, paraplegia has not improved 7 months after surgery. A SSEH should be considered when patients complain of abrupt, strong, and non-traumatic back and neck pain, particularly if they have no spinal pain history.
doi:10.4070/kcj.2011.41.12.759
PMCID: PMC3257462  PMID: 22259609
Acute myocardial infarction; Hematoma, epidural, spinal; Paraplegia; Thrombolytic therapy; Anticoagulants

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