With a wide range of applications, titanium dioxide (TiO2) nanoparticles (NPs) are manufactured worldwide in large quantities. Recently, in the field of nanomedicine, intravenous injection of TiO2 nanoparticulate carriers directly into the bloodstream has raised public concerns on their toxicity to humans.
In this study, mice were injected intravenously with a single dose of TiO2 NPs at varying dose levels (0, 140, 300, 645, or 1387 mg/kg). Animal mortality, blood biochemistry, hematology, genotoxicity and histopathology were investigated 14 days after treatment.
Death of mice in the highest dose (1387 mg/kg) group was observed at day two after TiO2 NPs injection. At day 7, acute toxicity symptoms, such as decreased physical activity and decreased intake of food and water, were observed in the highest dose group. Hematological analysis and the micronucleus test showed no significant acute hematological or genetic toxicity except an increase in the white blood cell (WBC) count among mice 645 mg/kg dose group. However, the spleen of the mice showed significantly higher tissue weight/body weight (BW) coefficients, and lower liver and kidney coefficients in the TiO2 NPs treated mice compared to control. The biochemical parameters and histological tissue sections indicated that TiO2 NPs treatment could induce different degrees of damage in the brain, lung, spleen, liver and kidneys. However, no pathological effects were observed in the heart in TiO2 NPs treated mice.
Intravenous injection of TiO2 NPs at high doses in mice could cause acute toxicity effects in the brain, lung, spleen, liver, and kidney. No significant hematological or genetic toxicity was observed.
Men who have sex with men (MSM) experience greater mental health problems as compared with heterosexual populations. Informal social support plays a critical role in emotional well-being. The primary goal of this article is to examine the relationship between depressive symptoms and received social support from family, friends, and sex partners within the social network from a sample of 188 African American MSM in Baltimore, Maryland. We found that receiving emotional support from a family member or a sex partner was associated with reduced odds of having depressive symptoms. Receiving financial support from a family member or a friend was associated with increased odds of having depressive symptoms. The results suggest the importance of emotional support provided by family and sex partner in mental health and the potential value of training African American MSM in skills to enhance the quality of the relationships.
Carcinoembryonic antigen-related cell adhesion molecule 1 (CEACAM1) is a multifunctional Ig-like cell adhesion molecule that has a wide range of biological functions. According to previous reports, serum CEACAM1 is dysregulated in different malignant tumours and associated with tumour progression. However, the serum CEACAM1 expression in non-small-cell lung carcinomas (NSCLC) is unclear. The different expression ratio of CEACAM1-S and CEACAM1-L isoform has seldom been investigated in NSCLC. This research is intended to study the serum CEACAM1 and the ratio of CEACAM1-S/L isoforms in NSCLC.
The expression of the serum CEACAM1 was determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The protein expression and the location of CEACAM1 in tumours were observed by immunohistochemical staining. The CEACAM1 mRNA levels in tumour and normal adjacent tissues were measured using quantitative real-time PCR, and the expression patterns and the rate of CEACAM1-S and CEACAM1-L were analysed by reverse transcription-PCR.
Serum CEACAM1 levels were significantly higher in NSCLC patients compared with that from normal healthy controls (P <0.0001). 17 patients (81%) among 21 showed high expression of CEACAM1 by immunohistochemical staining. Although no significant differences were found between tumour and normal tissues on mRNA expression levels of CEACAM1 (P >0.05), the CEACAM1-S and the CEACAM1-S/L (S: L) ratios were significantly higher in tumour than normal tissues (P <0.05).
Our data indicated that the serum levels of CEACAM1 could discriminate lung cancer patients from health donors and that CEACAM1 might be a useful marker in early diagnosis of NSCLC. Moreover, our results showed that the expression patterns of CEACAM1 isoforms could be changed during oncogenesis, even when total CEACAM1 in tumour tissues did not show significant changes. Our study suggested that the expression ratios of CEACAM1-S/CEACAM1-L might be a better diagnostic indicator in NSCLC than the quantitative changes of CEACAM1.
Carcinoembryonic antigen-related cell adhesion molecule 1; Non-small-cell lung carcinomas; Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay; Receiver operating characteristic curve
Acidosis, a critical aspect of central nervous system
and a metabolic corollary of the hypoxic stem cell niche, could be
an expedient trigger for hippocampal neurogenesis and brain repair.
We recently tracked the function of our isoxazole stem cell-modulator
small molecules (Isx) through a chemical biology-target discovery
strategy to GPR68, a proton (pH) sensing G protein-coupled receptor
with no known function in brain. Isx and GPR68 coregulated neuronal
target genes such as Bex1 (brain-enriched X-linked protein-1) in hippocampal
neural progenitors (HCN cells), which further amplified GPR68 signaling
by producing metabolic acid in response to Isx. To evaluate this proneurogenic
small molecule/proton signaling circuit in vivo, we explored GPR68
and BEX1 expression in brain and probed brain function with Isx. We
localized proton-sensing GPR68 to radial processes of hippocampal
type 1 neural stem cells (NSCs) and, conversely, localized BEX1 to
neurons. At the transcriptome level, Isx demonstrated unrivaled proneurogenic
activity in primary hippocampal NSC cultures. In vivo, Isx pharmacologically
targeted type 1 NSCs, promoting neurogenesis in young mice, depleting
the progenitor pool without adversely affecting hippocampal learning
and memory function. After traumatic brain injury, cerebral cortical
astrocytes abundantly expressed GPR68, suggesting an additional role
for proton-GPCR signaling in reactive astrogliosis. Thus, probing
a novel proneurogenic synthetic small molecule’s mechanism-of-action,
candidate target, and pharmacological activity, we identified a new
GPR68 regulatory pathway for integrating neural stem and astroglial
cell functions with brain pH.
Small molecules; acidosis; G protein-coupled
receptors; hippocampal neurogenesis; traumatic brain
Insect fat body is the organ for intermediary metabolism, comparable to vertebrate liver and adipose tissue. Larval fat body is disintegrated to individual fat body cells and then adult fat body is remodeled at the pupal stage. However, little is known about the dissociation mechanism. We find that the moth Helicoverpa armigera cathepsin L (Har-CL) is expressed heavily in the fat body and is released from fat body cells into the extracellular matrix. The inhibitor and RNAi experiments demonstrate that Har-CL functions in the fat body dissociation in H. armigera. Further, a nuclear protein is identified to be transcription factor Har-Relish, which was found in insect immune response and specifically binds to the promoter of Har-CL gene to regulate its activity. Har-Relish also responds to the steroid hormone ecdysone. Thus, the dissociation of the larval fat body is involved in the hormone (ecdysone)-transcription factor (Relish)-target gene (cathepsin L) regulatory pathway.
Insect fat body is the intermediary metabolism organ and the main source of hemolymph components, and it is crucial for insect development and metamorphosis. However, molecular mechanism for the fat body remodeling is almost unknown other than in Drosophila melanogaster. A pupal diapause species the cotton bollworm, Helicoverpa armigera (Har), is a useful model to study individual or tissue remodeling, because larval fat body will remain integral in diapause-type pupae for months, whereas the dissociation of larval fat body will start on day 0 after pupation in nondiapause-type ones. Here, we find that H. armigera cathepsin L (Har-CL) is released from fat body cells into the extracellular matrix for tissue dissociation. A nuclear protein is identified to be transcription factor Har-Relish, which regulates the promoter activity of Har-CL gene. Har-Relish also responds to the steroid hormone ecdysone. Thus, a new regulatory mechanism, ecdysone-Relish-cathepsin L signaling pathway, is involved in the larval fat body dissociation.
The serotonin (5-HT) uptake system is supposed to play a crucial part in vascular functions by “fine-tuning” the local concentration of 5-HT in the vicinity of 5-HT2 receptors in vascular smooth muscle cells. In this study, the mechanism of 5-HT uptake in human brain vascular smooth muscle cells (HBVSMCs) was investigated. [3H]5-HT uptake in HBVSMCs was Na+-independent. Kinetic analyses of [3H]5-HT uptake in HBVSMCs revealed a Km of 50.36 ± 10.2 mM and a Vmax of 1033.61 ± 98.86 pmol/mg protein/min. The specific serotonin re-uptake transporter (SERT) inhibitor citalopram, the specific norepinephrine transporter (NET) inhibitor desipramine, and the dopamine transporter (DAT) inhibitor GBR12935 inhibited 5-HT uptake in HBVSMCs with IC50 values of 97.03 ± 40.10, 10.49 ± 5.98, and 2.80 ± 1.04 μM, respectively. These IC50 values were 100-fold higher than data reported by other authors, suggesting that those inhibitors were not blocking their corresponding transporters. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction results demonstrated the presence of mRNA for organic cation transporter (OCT)-3 and plasma membrane monoamine transporter (PMAT), but the absence of OCT-1, OCT-2, SERT, NET, and DAT. siRNA knockdown of OCT-3 and PMAT specifically attenuated 5-HT uptake in HBVSMCs. It is concluded that 5-HT uptake in HBVSMCs was mediated predominantly by a low-affinity and Na+-independent mechanism. The most probable candidates are OCT-3 and PMAT, but not the SERT.
serotonin; organic cation transporter; monoamine transporter; vascular smooth muscle cells
The purpose of this study was to examine experiencing violence as a predictor of subsequent drug relapse among a sample of former crack, cocaine, and heroin users in Baltimore, MD, USA. The sample consists of 228 former drug users in Baltimore who were recruited through street outreach. Mixed-effects models were used to examine experiencing violence as a predictor of drug relapse at follow-up after adjusting for clustering of responses among participants living in the same census block. Using longitudinal data, we found that experiencing violence in the past year predicted drug relapse at 2-year follow-up among former drug users. Results indicate experiencing violence is a determinant of drug use relapse and highlight the importance of addressing the fundamental issues of violence experienced in inner-city communities. Addressing the extent of recent violence among drug treatment participants, providing coping skills, and reducing community violence are strategies that may address the link between violence and drug relapse.
Violence; Drug relapse; Drug users; Inner city
Despite numerous behavioral interventions designed for women, rates of HIV and STIs are increasing. Interventions are needed that reach a large number of at-risk individuals. This study was a randomized clinical trial of a HIV/STI behavioral intervention conducted in Baltimore, MD, USA. Heterosexual women (n=169) completed a baseline and 3 semiannual follow-up visits. Participants were randomized into a standard of care comparison condition or a Peer Mentor condition. At the 6-month follow-up, Peer Mentors were less likely to have multiple sex partners [AOR: 0.28 (95% CI: 0.13, 0.63)]. At the 18 month follow-up assessment, Peer Mentors increased their condom use during vaginal [AOR: 0.47 (95% CI: 0.25, 0.87)] and anal sex [AOR: 0.24 (95% CI: 0.09, 0.68)] as well as with main [AOR: 0.41 (95% CI: 0.21, 0.77)] and non-main partners [AOR: 0.33 (95% CI: 0.14, 0.79]. Peer education is a sustainable approach to change risky sexual behaviors.
We compared social network characteristics of African American men who have sex with men only (MSMO) with social network characteristics of African American men who have sex with men and women (MSMW).
Study participants were 234 African American men who have sex with men who completed a baseline social network assessment for a pilot behavioral HIV prevention intervention in Baltimore, Maryland, from 2006 through 2009. We surveyed the men to elicit the characteristics of their social networks, and we used logistic regression models to assess differences in network characteristics.
MSMO were significantly more likely than were MSMW to be HIV-positive (52% vs 31%). We found no differences between MSMO and MSMW in the size of kin networks or emotional and material support networks. MSMW had denser sexual networks, reported more concurrent and exchange partners, used condoms with more sexual partners, and reported interaction with a larger number of sexual partners at least once a week.
Although there were many similarities in the social and sexual network characteristics of MSMO and MSMW, differences did exist. HIV prevention interventions should address the unique needs of African American MSMW.
This study examined correlates of disclosure of MSM behavior and seropositive HIV status to social network members among 187 African American MSM in Baltimore, MD. 49.7% of participants were HIV-positive, 64% of their social network members (excluding male sex partners) were aware of their MSM behavior, and 71.3% were aware of their HIV-positive status. Disclosure of MSM behavior to network members was more frequent among participants who were younger, had a higher level of education, and were HIV-positive. Attributes of the social network members associated with MSM disclosure included the network member being HIV-positive, providing emotional support, socializing with the participant, and not being a female sex partner. Participants who were younger were more likely to disclose their positive HIV status. Attributes of social network members associated with disclosure of positive serostatus included the network member being older, HIV-positive, providing emotional support, loaning money, and not being a male sex partner.
Bean pod mottle virus (BPMV) is a wide-spread and destructive virus that causes huge economic losses in many countries every year. A sensitive, reliable and specific method for rapid surveillance is urgently needed to prevent further spread of BPMV.
A degenerate reverse-transcription loop-mediated isothermal amplification (RT-LAMP) primer set was designed on the conserved region of BPMV CP gene. The reaction conditions of RT-LAMP were optimized and the feasibility, specificity and sensitivity of this method to detect BPMV were evaluated using the crude RNA rapidly extracted from soybean seeds.
The optimized RT-LAMP parameters including 6 mM MgCl2, 0.8 M betaine and temperature at 62.5-65°C could successfully amplify the ladder-like bands from BPMV infected soybean seeds. The amplification was very specific to BPMV that no cross-reaction was observed with other soybean viruses. Inclusion of a fluorescent dye makes it easily be detected in-tube by naked eye. The sensitivity of RT-LAMP assay is higher than the conventional RT-PCR under the conditions tested, and the conventional RT-PCR couldn’t be used for detection of BPMV using crude RNA extract from soybean seeds.
A highly efficient and practical method was developed for the detection of BPMV in soybean seeds by the combination of rapid RNA extraction and RT-LAMP. This RT-LAMP method has great potential for rapid BPMV surveillance and will assist in preventing further spread of this devastating virus.
Bean pod mottle virus (BPMV); RT-LAMP; Rapid detection; Soybean seeds
Atherosclerosis is a condition in which a lipid deposition, thrombus formation, immune cell infiltration, and a chronic inflammatory response, but its systemic study has been hampered by the lack of suitable animal models, especially in herbalism fields. We have tried to perform a perfect animal model that completely replicates the stages of human atherosclerosis. This is the first combined study about the immunologic injury and balloon injury based on the cholesterol diet. In this study, we developed a modified protocol of the white rabbit model that could represent a novel approach to studying human atherosclerosis and vulnerable plaque.
U.S. women have worse HAART and HIV health outcomes compared to U.S. men. The study examined main partner factors associated with women's HAART adherence. The community sample comprised 85% African Americans; 63% had a main partner and 32% relied on their partner for emotional support. Adherence was highest (92%) among those without a main partner, and lowest (57%) among those with an HIV seropositive main partner. In adjusted analysis, adherence was 75% less likely among women with an HIV seropositive main partner, and 78% less likely among those relying on their partner for emotional support. Furthermore, HIV seropositive versus other serostatus main partners were most likely to provide medication taking assistance and to be preferred in helping participants deal with HIV, yet were no more likely to be nominated as the most helpful to them. Findings reveal women's perceived unmet support needs from HIV seropositive main partners in this population, and the need for interventions to promote their HAART adherence. Seroconcordant couples-focused intervention that enhances mutual support of HAART adherence may be an effective approach to improving women's HAART adherence and reducing US gender disparities in HIV health outcomes.
HIV/AIDS; highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART); adherence; women; main partners; couples
The development of accessory breast tissue, which is found anywhere along the milk line, is attributed to the failure of milk line remnants to regress during embryogenesis. Primary tumors may arise from any ectopic breast tissue. Accessory breast cancer occurring concurrently with primary invasive breast cancer is extremely rare. Two such cases were reported in this article. One was a 43-year-old Chinese female who exhibited bilateral breast cancer (invasive ductal carcinoma, not otherwise specified, IDC-NOS) and an accessory breast carcinoma (IDC-NOS) incidentally identified in her left axilla. The ectopic breast tissue in her right axilla presented with adenosis. The patient was surgically treated, followed by postoperative docetaxel epirubicin (TE) chemotherapy. The second case was a 53-year-old Chinese female with bilateral breast cancer (apocrine carcinoma) accompanied by an accessory breast carcinoma (IDC-NOS) in her right axilla that was also incidentally identified. The patient was surgically treated after three doses of cyclophosphamide epirubicin docetaxel (CET) neoadjuvant chemotherapy, followed by adjuvant chemotherapy of the same regimen.
invasive breast cancer; bilateral; primary; accessory breast cancer; occurring concurrently
The purpose of this study was to examine whether social network factors predict HIV and Hepatitis C (HCV) serostatus after controlling for individual-level factors at baseline among a cohort of male injection drug users in Chennai, India.
The sample, which was recruited through street outreach, consists of 1,078 males who reported having injected drugs in the last 6 months
The participants reported 3,936 social support and risk network members. HIV and HCV positive serostatus were negatively associated with network member providing emotional support, and positively associated with network member providing material support. In addition, HCV positivity was associated with network member being an active drug user known for more than 10 years and network member being male kin networks, even after adjusting for individual demographic factors and risk behaviors.
These findings suggest that social network factors are significantly linked to HIV and HCV status among IDUs in Southern India and highlight the mixed effects of social capital on health. Future HIV/HCV prevention efforts should incorporate IDU peers to alter drug network injection risk norms. For drug users who have minimal network support, support groups and other informal and formal support mechanisms may help coping with HIV/HCV and cessation of drug use.
Social networks; HIV; Hepatitis C; India; social capital; injection drug users
In order to achieve rapid, automatic, and efficient extraction for trace chemicals from samples, a system of gas-purged headspace liquid phase microextraction (GP-HS-LPME) has been researched and developed based on the original HS-LPME technique. In this system, semiconductor condenser and heater, whose refrigerating and heating temperatures were controlled by microcontroller, were designed to cool the extraction solvent and to heat the sample, respectively. Besides, inert gas, whose gas flow rate was adjusted by mass flow controller, was continuously introduced into and discharged from the system. Under optimized parameters, extraction experiments were performed, respectively, using GP-HS-LPME system and original HS-LPME technique for enriching volatile and semivolatile target compounds from the same kind of sample of 15 PAHs standard mixture. GC-MS analysis results for the two experiments indicated that a higher enrichment factor was obtained from GP-HS-LPME. The enrichment results demonstrate that GP-HS-LPME system is potential in determination of volatile and semivolatile analytes from various kinds of samples.
The dentate gyrus of the hippocampus is one of the most prominent regions in the postnatal mammalian brain where neurogenesis continues throughout life. There is tremendous speculation regarding the potential implications of adult hippocampal neurogenesis, though it remains unclear to what extent this ability becomes attenuated during normal aging, and what genetic changes in the progenitor population ensue over time. Using defined elements of the nestin promoter, we developed a transgenic mouse that reliably labels neural stem and early progenitors with green fluorescent protein (GFP). Using a combination of immunohistochemical and flow cytometry techniques, we characterized the progenitor cells within the dentate gyrus and created a developmental profile from postnatal day 7 (P7) until 6 months of age. In addition, we demonstrate that the proliferative potential of these progenitors is controlled at least in part by cell-autonomous cues. Finally, in order to identify what may underlie these differences, we performed stem cell-specific microarrays on GFP-expressing sorted cells from isolated P7 and postnatal day 28 (P28) dentate gyrus. We identified several differentially expressed genes that may underlie the functional differences that we observe in neurosphere assays from sorted cells and differentiation assays at these different ages. These data suggest that neural progenitors from the dentate gyrus are differentially regulated by cell-autonomous factors that change over time.
brain development; hippocampus; neural stem cell; microarray
Research suggests gender differences in interpersonal relationship factors important to health. This study examined relationship factors associated with HAART adherence among men. The sample (n=154) comprised 95% African Americans and 48% current illicit drug users; 83% reported HAART adherence. Results revealed adherence was associated with comfort level taking HAART in the presence of close friends, and the interaction between informal care (having someone to care for oneself when sick in bed) and reciprocity of support. Among those with informal care, higher reciprocity of support to caregivers was associated with greater adherence. Promoting men’s reciprocity of support to their caregivers and enhancing peer norms of medication taking are important strategies for improving men’s adherence. The findings complement previous findings on relationship factors adversely associated with women’s adherence. Results suggest the merit of interventions targeting men and their informal caregivers, particularly main partners, and gender-specific, contextually tailored strategies to promote HAART adherence.
HIV/AIDS; adherence; highly active antiretroviral therapy; male gender; informal caregiving; reciprocity of social support
The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between perceived drug use stigma, acquiescence response bias, and HIV injection risk behaviors among current injection drug users in Chennai, India.
The sample consists of 851 males in Chennai, India who reported having injected drugs in the last month and were recruited through street outreach.
Results indicate a strong and consistent positive association between drug use stigma and HIV injection drug use risk behaviors. This association held across the injection behaviors of frequency of sharing needles, cookers, cotton filters, rinse water, prefilled syringes and common drug solutions, even after controlling for acquiescence response bias, frequency of injection, and HIV/HCV serostatus.
These findings suggest that future HIV prevention and harm reduction programs for injection drug users and service providers should address drug use stigma.
stigma; HIV; HCV; acquiescence response bias; risk behavior; India; injection drug use
Despite their crucial role in HIV infection and transmission, commercial sex male clients (CSMCs) are rarely studied. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between peer norms and consistent condom use with female sex workers (FSWs) among CSMCs in Sichuan province, China. Male clients with peers who had paid for sex (n=562) were recruited by local health workers through snowball sampling. Measures of peer norms included 1) descriptive norms which were evaluated by perceptions of peer’s condom attitudes and behaviors with FSWs; 2) injunctive norms which were assessed by the perceived peer approval of using condoms with FSWs; and 3) communication of HIV-related topics with peers. The outcome was consistent condom use with FSWs. Results of multivariate logistic regression models revealed that consistent condom use with FSWs was significantly more likely among male clients who perceived more pro-condom descriptive and injunctive norms among their peer groups. In addition, the pattern of commercial sex visits moderated the relations between peer norms and consistent condom use with FSWs. More peer approval of condom use and more HIV-related communication were significantly associated with consistent condom use among clients who visited FSWs with friends but not among those who visited FSWs alone. The findings suggest that social activities surrounding commercial sex visits may provide an entry point for HIV prevention intervention with men who patronize FSWs and that such efforts should tap into existing dynamics of social interaction to promote pro-condom norms.
commercial sex; peer norms; condoms; HIV; China; female sex workers; male sex clients
In cat visual cortex, critical period neuronal plasticity is minimal until approximately 3 postnatal weeks, peaks at 5 weeks, gradually declines to low levels at 20 weeks, and disappears by 1 year of age. Dark rearing slows the entire time course of this critical period, such that at 5 weeks of age, normal cats are more plastic than dark reared cats, whereas at 20 weeks, dark reared cats are more plastic. Thus, a stringent criterion for identifying genes that are important for plasticity in visual cortex is that they show differences in expression between normal and dark reared that are of opposite direction in young versus older animals.
The present study reports the identification by differential display PCR of a novel gene, α-chimaerin, as a candidate visual cortex critical period plasticity gene that showed bidirectional regulation of expression due to age and dark rearing. Northern blotting confirmed the bidirectional expression and 5'RACE sequencing identified the gene. There are two alternatively-spliced α-chimaerin isoforms: α1 and α2. Western blotting extended the evidence for bidirectional regulation of visual cortex α-chimaerin isoform expression to protein in cats and mice. α1- and α2-Chimaerin were elevated in dark reared compared to normal visual cortex at the peak of the normal critical period and in normal compared to dark reared visual cortex at the nadir of the normal critical period. Analysis of variance showed a significant interaction in both cats and mice for both α-chimaerin isoforms, indicating that the effect of dark rearing depended on age. This differential expression was not found in frontal cortex.
Chimaerins are RhoGTPase-activating proteins that are EphA4 effectors and have been implicated in a number of processes including growth cone collapse, axon guidance, dendritic spine development and the formation of corticospinal motor circuits. The present results identify α-chimaerin as a candidate molecule for a role in the postnatal critical period of visual cortical plasticity.
Chimerin; α1-Chimaerin; α2-Chimaerin; Dark Rearing; differential display PCR
Adopting socioecological, intersectionality, and lifecourse theoretical frameworks may enhance our understanding of the production of syndemic adverse health outcomes among gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men (MSM). From this perspective, we present preliminary data from three related studies that suggest ways in which social contexts may influence the health of MSM. The first study, using cross-sectional data, looked at migration of MSM to the gay resort area of South Florida, and found that amount of time lived in the area was associated with risk behaviors and HIV infection. The second study, using qualitative interviews, observed complex interactions between neighborhood-level social environments and individual-level racial and sexual identity among MSM in New York City. The third study, using egocentric network analysis with a sample of African American MSM in Baltimore, found that sexual partners were more likely to be found through face-to-face means than the Internet. They also observed that those who co-resided with a sex partner had larger networks of people to depend on for social and financial support, but had the same size sexual networks as those who did not live with a partner. Overall, these findings suggest the need for further investigation into the role of macro-level social forces on the emotional, behavioral, and physical health of urban MSM.
Homosexuality; Male; Urban health; Social environment
The neuronal pathology caused by neonatal infection of rats with the PVC-211 murine leukemia virus (PVC-211 MuLV) and its underlying mechanisms are not well defined even though a loss of neurons and spongiform neurodegeneration has been reported to accompany the disease. Here we sought to identify sites of neurodegeneration using microglial reactivity as an indirect marker and to characterize microglial activation during disease progression. Using a panel of microglial antibodies including Iba1, OX-42, ED1, and anti-ferritin, we have studied the response of microglial cells to neonatal CNS infection with PVC-211 at post-infection survival times 7, 14, 21, and 28 days. We found that microglial activation occurred primarily in the spinal cord and brainstem where it gradually increased in intensity over the time course of this study. Other brain areas were relatively unremarkable in their microglial reaction to viral infection within this time frame. However, presence of activated microglial cells was not correlated directly with presence of viral glycoprotein (gp70), which was expressed in endothelial cells throughout the CNS. Although double labeling of microglia with Iba1 and ED1 revealed numerous actively phagocytic microglia during disease progression, not all activated microglia were ED1-positive. In addition to the intense microglial activation, we found increased ferritin expression sporadically throughout the virus-infected brain. The ferritin-positive cells were mostly microglia that exhibited dystrophic changes and likely represented a degenerating subpopulation of microglial cells. Thus, activated microglia can co-exist with degenerating microglia in the same brain region. We attempted to localize degenerating neurons or neurites using Fluoro-Jade, anti-tau, and anti-alpha synuclein staining, but none of these procedures yielded results to indicate obvious neuronal pathology. We conclude that the visualization of microglial activation is a more sensitive measure of neuronal perturbations than direct detection of neuronal pathology which may be subtle and not produce overt degenerative changes.
rat; ED1; ferritin; murine leukemia virus; microgliosis
Objective. To correlate visual and neurologic
clinical scores and treatment of optic neuritis and multiple
sclerosis (MS) patients with assays of serum phosphorylated
neurofilament heavy chain (pNF-H) and optical coherence tomography
(OCT) measurements of axonal loss.
Design/Methods. The Optic Neuritis Treatment
Trial (ONTT) randomized 457 patients with acute optic neuritis to
intravenous methylprednisolone (IVMP) followed by oral prednisone,
oral prednisone or placebo treatment arms. We quantified serum
pNF-H levels in 175 ONTT patients 5 years after study entry. We
performed OCT measurements of macular volume and the retinal nerve
fiber layer (RNFL) in a subset of 51 patients at year 15.
Results. Elevated pNF-H levels at year 5
correlated to poorer visual function at study entry. Lower 15 year
macular volumes and RNFL thickness correlated better with
follow-up than with baseline visual function measures. With IVMP
treatment, 15 year RNFL differences of the fellow eye (FE) minus
the affected eye (SE) RNFLFEmSE correlated with five-year pNF-H
levels. PNF-H was reduced by half with IVMP relative to placebo or
by 40% relative to prednisone.
Conclusions/Relevance. Acute optic neuritis
patients who have more severe visual loss during initial
presentation have a higher incidence of axonal loss that was
slightly suppressed with IVMP treatment.
Commercial sex work has re-emerged as a widespread industry since China started economic reforms in the 1980s. This study examined the role of interpersonal and venue-level factors in commercial sex male clients' (CSMCs) condom use with female sex workers (FSWs) in China. Given the heterogeneity of commercial sex industry in China, this study also aimed to explore how these factors function differently by social ranks of commercial sex work frequented by CSMCs. A cross-sectional survey was conducted with 601 CSMCs in Sichuan province, China. Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) prevalence in this sample was 1.7%. In addition to the individual characteristics, interpersonal factor was measured by the frequency of FSWs taking the initiative in condom use and providing condoms. Venue-level factor was assessed by the frequency of the managers of commercial sex venues communicating condom use policies and the frequency of condom availability in commercial sex venues. The primary behavioral outcome was consistent condom use with FSWs. Multivariate logistic regression models revealed that consistent condom use with FSWs was significantly associated with interpersonal (adjusted odds ratio (AOR), 1.62; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.38, 1.90) and venue-level factors (AOR, 1.98; 95% CI, 1.40, 2.80). Moreover, the associations between interpersonal and venue-level factors and consistent condom use were moderated by social ranks of commercial sex work frequented by the male clients. The present study findings underscore the need for comprehensive HIV prevention approaches that integrate individual, interpersonal, and venue-level factors to reduce HIV risk behaviors among CSMCs in China.
Commercial sex male clients; Interpersonal factors; Venue-level factors; Condom use; HIV; China