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1.  Complications of diverticular disease: surgical laparoscopic treatment 
Il Giornale di Chirurgia  2014;35(5-6):126-128.
Surgical treatment of complicated colonic diverticular disease is still debatable. The aim of our study was to evaluate the outcome of laparoscopic colon resection in patients with diverticulitis and with complications like colon-vescical fistula, peridiverticular abscess, perforation or stricture.
All patients underwent laparoscopic colectomy within 8 years period. Main data recorded were age, sex, return of bowel function, operation time, duration of hospital stay, ASA score, body mass index (BMI), early and late complications. During the study period, 33 colon resections were performed for diverticulitis and complications of diverticulitis. We performed 5 associated procedures. We had 2 postoperative complications; 1 of these required a redo operation with laparotomy for anastomotic leak and 3 patients required conversion from laparoscopic to open colectomy. The most common reasons for conversion were related to the inflammatory process with a severe adhesion syndrome. Mean operative time was 229 minutes, and average postoperative hospital stay was 9,8 days.
Laparoscopic surgery for complications of diverticular disease is safe, effective and feasible. Laparoscopic colectomy has replaced open resection as standard surgery for recurrent and complicated diverticulitis in our institution.
PMCID: PMC4321514  PMID: 24979103
Laparoscopic surgery; Laparoscopy; Diverticulitis; Fistula; Abdomen; Complications
2.  The mGlu2/3 Receptor Agonists LY354740 and LY379268 Differentially Regulate Restraint-Stress-Induced Expression of c-Fos in Rat Cerebral Cortex 
Neuroscience journal  2013;2013:736439.
Metabotropic glutamate 2/3 (mGlu2/3) receptors have emerged as potential therapeutic targets due to the ability of mGlu2/3 receptor agonists to modulate excitatory transmission at specific synapses. LY354740 and LY379268 are selective and potent mGlu2/3 receptor agonists that show both anxiolytic- and antipsychotic-like effects in animal models. We compared the efficacy of LY354740 and LY379268 in attenuating restraint-stress-induced expression of the immediate early gene c-Fos in the rat prelimbic (PrL) and infralimbic (IL) cortex. LY354740 (10 and 30 mg/kg, i.p.) showed statistically significant and dose-related attenuation of stress-induced increase in c-Fos expression, in the rat cortex. By contrast, LY379268 had no effect on restraint-stress-induced c-Fos upregulation (0.3–10 mg/kg, i.p.). Because both compounds inhibit serotonin 2A receptor (5-HT2AR)-induced c-Fos expression, we hypothesize that LY354740 and LY379268 have different in vivo properties and that 5-HT2AR activation and restraint stress induce c-Fos through distinct mechanisms.
PMCID: PMC4437333  PMID: 26317098
3.  Sigmoid volvulus: is it a possible complication after stapled transanal rectal resection (STARR)? 
Il Giornale di Chirurgia  2013;34(7-8):224-226.
We report a case of sigmoid volvulus post-stapled transanal rectal resection (STARR) for obstructed defecation. The patient, a 68-year-old woman with chronic constipation and dolichosigma, two days post-STARR presented severe abdominal pain. CT revealed sigmoid ischemia. The patient underwent resection of the sigmoid colon with end colostomy (Hartmann’s procedure). Can STARR procedure produce a serious complication as sigmoid volvulus in patient with dolichosigma and obstructed defecation syndrome?
PMCID: PMC3915607  PMID: 24091179
Volvulus; STARR; Sigmoid colon; Dolichosigma
4.  Mediastinal hibernoma: a case report 
Journal of Clinical Pathology  2004;57(9):993-994.
Hibernomas are rare benign tumours that arise most often in adults from the remnants of fetal brown adipose tissue. They usually affect muscle and subcutaneous tissue and are asymptomatic and slow growing. The distribution of this tumour follows the sites of persistence of brown fat. Out of more then 100 cases described in the word literature only three hybernomas were mediastinal. A recent clinicopathological study of 170 cases from the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology confirmed the exceptionality of the intrathoracic location. This report describes a very rare case of mediastinal hibernoma in a young man.
PMCID: PMC1770406  PMID: 15333666
hibernoma; mediastinum; S-100; immunohistochemistry
5.  Prognostic significance of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and expression of cell cycle inhibitors p21 and p27 in human pleural malignant mesothelioma 
Thorax  2004;59(5):428-433.
Background: A study was undertaken to analyse the potential prognostic value of the immunohistochemical expression of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and p27 in 29 malignant mesotheliomas already screened for the expression of p21 and p53.
Methods: Immunohistochemistry was used to determine the expression of COX-2 and p27. The correlation with survival of these factors and of p21 and p53 expression was assessed by univariate and multivariate analyses.
Results: A positive statistically significant correlation was found between p27 and p21 expression (p<0.0001), but there was a negative correlation between COX-2 expression and both p27 (p = 0.001) and p21 (p<0.0001). No statistically significant correlation was recorded between p53 and all the other immunohistochemical parameters. Univariate analysis showed that overall survival was strongly influenced by p21, p27, and COX-2 expression, but multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that the only immunohistochemical parameter to influence overall survival of patients with mesothelioma was COX-2.
Conclusions: These findings suggest that COX-2 expression may be a useful prognostic parameter for mesothelioma.
PMCID: PMC1746992  PMID: 15115874
6.  Analysis of cell cycle regulator proteins in non-small cell lung cancer 
Journal of Clinical Pathology  2004;57(1):58-63.
Background/Aims: Abnormalities of the proteins involved in cell cycle checkpoints are extremely common among almost all neoplasms. This study aimed to investigate the expression of four components of the cell cycle machinery—p21, p16, p53, and proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA)—in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
Methods: The expression of p21, p16, p53, and PCNA was examined in 68 well characterised NSCLC specimens using immunohistochemistry. The coregulation of these proteins and their influence on survival were analysed using both univariate and multivariate analyses.
Results: By univariate analysis, the expression of all the proteins examined, except for PCNA, was significantly correlated with survival. In multivariate analysis, the only immunohistochemical parameter able to influence overall survival was p16, confirming the hypothesis that the RB–p16 tumour suppressor pathway is inactivated in most lung cancer samples. Finally, the group of patients with NSCLC who were negative for both p21 and p16 had a significantly shorter overall survival.
Conclusions: These results suggest that loss of control of cell cycle checkpoints is a common occurrence in lung cancers, and support the idea that functional cooperation between different cell cycle inhibitor proteins constitutes another level of regulation in cell growth control and tumour suppression.
PMCID: PMC1770176  PMID: 14693837
7.  Expression of p21 in SV40 large T antigen positive human pleural mesothelioma: relationship with survival 
Thorax  2002;57(4):353-356.
Background: Mesothelioma is the most commonly occurring primary pleural neoplasm. Several studies have documented an increase in the incidence of this malignancy during the last decades. Although the association between asbestos exposure and development of mesothelioma is generally accepted, the exact mechanism of carcinogenesis is unknown. Recently, Simian virus 40 large T antigen (SV40 Tag) expression has been detected in pleural mesothelioma. The ability of SV40 oncoproteins to inactivate p53 and retinoblastoma tumour suppressor proteins has been proposed as an important step in the pathogenesis of human mesothelioma.
Methods: To obtain a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms of the pathogenesis of mesothelioma, the expression of the cell cycle inhibitor p21WAF1/CIP1 (p21), a downstream target of p53, was evaluated immunohistochemically in a group of 29 mesothelioma specimens already characterised for the presence of SV40 Tag sequences.
Results: Statistical analysis did not reveal any correlation between p21 expression and histopathological type of mesothelioma using the κ2 test (p=0.577). A significant positive relationship was found between p21 expression level and the patients' overall survival according to the Kaplan-Meier survival curves and using a log rank test (median difference in survival 7 months, 95% CI 4.8 to 9.9; p<0.001).
Conclusions: Determination of p21 expression bears a prognostic significance in patients affected with mesothelioma, further underlining the role of SV40 in the pathogenesis of malignant pleural mesothelioma.
PMCID: PMC1746306  PMID: 11923556
8.  Atrial fibrillation coexisting with ventricular tachycardia: a challenge for dual chamber defibrillators 
Heart  2001;86(3):253-254.
PMCID: PMC1729879  PMID: 11514472
9.  Prevalence of headache in an elderly population: attack frequency, disability, and use of medication 
OBJECTIVES—To assess the 1 year prevalence of tension-type headache (TTH), migraine headache (MH), and chronic daily headache (CDH), as well as of headache in general in a rural elderly population.
METHODS—A door to door two phase survey was carried out on all elderly (⩾65 years) residents in three villages in central Italy. Participants completed a standardised headache questionnaire and underwent a clinical evaluation by a neurologist. Headache diagnosis was made according to the classification of the International Headache Society, with minor modifications for the classification of patients with MH with⩾15 attacks/month.
RESULTS—Eight hundred and thirty three (72.6%) of the 1147 eligible persons completed the study protocol. One year prevalence rates were respectively 44.5% for TTH, 11.0% for MH, 2.2% for symptomatic headaches, and 0.7% for the remaining types of headache. The prevalence of headache in general was 51.0% because 62 residents had both TTH and MH attacks. Prevalence rates of patients with headache were higher in women than men (62.1% and 36.6% respectively) and decreased steadily with age for the 65-74, 75-84, and 85-96 age groups (56.7%, 45.2% and 26.1% respectively). Prevalence rates were 20.4% for patients with moderate to severe attacks, 18.0% for those with ⩾1 attacks a month, and 4.4% for those with CDH. Of the 425 with headache 52 (12.2%) had not taken any drugs for their attacks in the previous year, 195 (45.9%) had taken them regularly, and 178 (41.9%) had taken them only when the headache pain interfered with activities that could not be postponed. Medication overuse was reported by 37.8% of patients with CDH with higher proportions for transformed migraine than for patients with chronic TTH (69.2% and 23.8% respectively, p=0.009)
CONCLUSIONS—A consistent proportion of elderly people have primary headaches and consultation with a specialist is particularly recommended for patients with moderate or severe attacks, or with CDH.

PMCID: PMC1737286  PMID: 11181862
10.  T-cell dysfunctions in hu-PBL-SCID mice infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) shortly after reconstitution: in vivo effects of HIV on highly activated human immune cells. 
Journal of Virology  1996;70(11):7958-7964.
The state of activation of the immune system may be an important factor which renders a host more receptive to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and more vulnerable to its effects. To explore this issue with a practical in vivo model, we developed a modified protocol of HIV infection in hu-PBL-SCID mice. First, we assessed the time course of activation of human peripheral blood lymphocytes (hu-PBL) in the peritoneal cavity of SCID mice. At 2 to 24 h after the intraperitoneal injection into SCID mice, there was a clear-cut increase in the percentage of hu-PBL expressing early activation markers (CD69), concomitant with the release of soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (sICAM-1) and the soluble interleukin-2 receptor (sIL-2R) and with the accumulation of mRNAs for a number of human cytokines. At 2 weeks, virtually all of the hu-PBL expressed the memory phenotype (CD45RO) and HLA-DR antigens as well. Cells collected from the SCID mouse peritoneum at 2 and 24 h after transplantation were fully susceptible to in vitro infection with HIV type 1 (HIV-1) in the absence of either IL-2 or mitogens. The injection of HIV into hu-PBL-SCID mice at 2 h after reconstitution resulted in a generalized and productive HIV infection of the xenochimeras. This early HIV-1 infection resulted in a dramatic depletion of human CD4+ cells and in decreased levels of sICAM-1 (in the peritoneal lavage fluid) as well as of sIL-2R and immunoglobulins M and A (in the serum). Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and/or reverse transcriptase PCR analysis showed higher levels of IL-4, IL-5, and IL-10 in the HIV-infected animals than in control hu-PBL-SCID mice, while gamma interferon levels in the two groups were comparable. When we compared the current model of HIV-1 infection at 2 weeks after the intraperitoneal injection of the hu-PBL in the SCID mice with the model described here, we found that the majority of immune dysfunctions induced in the 2-h infection of the xenochimeras are not inducible in the 2-week infection. This supports the concept that the state of activation of human cells at the moment of the in vivo infection with HIV-1 is a crucial factor in determining the immune derangement observed in AIDS patients. These results show that some immunological dysfunctions induced by HIV infection in AIDS patients can be mimicked in this xenochimeric model. Thus, the hu-PBL-SCID mouse model may be useful in exploring, in vivo, the relevance of hu-PBL activation and differentiation in HIV-1 infection and for testing therapeutic intervention directed towards either the virus or the immune system.
PMCID: PMC190868  PMID: 8892919

Results 1-10 (10)